Newly activated CD8+ T cells reprogram their metabolism to meet the extraordinary biosynthetic demands of clonal expansion; however, the signals mediating metabolic reprogramming remain poorly defined. Herein, we demonstrate an essential role for sterol regulatory element binding proteins (SREBPs) in the acquisition of effector cell metabolism. Without SREBP signaling, CD8+ T cells are unable to blast, resulting in markedly attenuated clonal expansion during viral infection. Mechanistic studies indicate that SREBPs are essential to meet the heightened lipid requirements of membrane synthesis during blastogenesis. SREBPs are dispensable for homeostatic proliferation, indicating a context-specific requirement for SREBPs in effector responses. These studies provide insights into the molecular signals underlying metabolic reprogramming of CD8+ T cells during the transition from quiescence to activation.
SREBP; LCMV; lipids; CD8+ T cell; metabolism; proliferation
Nonmotor symptoms (NMS) are common in patients with established Parkinson disease (PD) but their frequency in early PD has not been extensively studied. Our aim was to determine the frequency of NMS in a cohort of patients with newly diagnosed PD.
A total of 159 patients with early PD and 99 healthy controls participated in this study. NMS were screened for using the Nonmotor Symptom Questionnaire. Other assessments included measures of motor disability (Movement Disorders Society–revised Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale [MDS-UPDRS]), disease severity (Hoehn & Yahr staging), depression (Geriatric Depression Scale), and global cognitive function (Mini-Mental State Examination and Montreal Cognitive Assessment).
The PD group reported a significantly greater number of NMS compared with controls (8.4 [4.3] vs 2.8 [2.6]). In the PD group, the most commonly experienced NMS were excessive saliva, forgetfulness, urinary urgency, hyposmia, and constipation. Patients with higher MDS-UPDRS III scores and those with the postural instability gait subtype experienced a greater number of NMS.
NMS are common in early PD and reflect the multisystem nature of the disorder. Even in the earliest stages of PD, NMS may be detrimental to patients' functional status and sense of well-being.
Laparoscopic cholecystectomy (LC) is the gold standard procedure for gallbladder removal. However, conversion to open surgery is sometimes needed. The factors underlying a surgeon's decision to convert a laparoscopic case to an open case are complex and poorly understood. With decreasing experience in open cholecystectomy, this procedure is however no longer the “safe” alternative it once was. With such an impending paradigm shift, this study aimed to identify the main reasons for conversion and ultimately to develop guidelines to help reduce the conversion rates.
Using the National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (NSQIP) database and financial records, the authors retrospectively reviewed 1,193 cholecystectomies performed at their institution from 2002 to 2009 and identified 70 conversions. Two independent surgeons reviewed the operative notes and determined the reasons for conversion. The number of ports at the time and the extent of dissection before conversion were assessed and used to create new conversion categories. Hospital length of stay (LOS), 30-day complications, operative times and charges, and hospital charges were compared between the new groups.
In 91% of conversion cases, the conversion was elective. In 49% of these conversions, the number of ports was fewer than four. According to the new conversion categories, most conversions were performed after minimal or no attempt at dissection. There were no differences in LOS, complications, operating room charges, or hospital charges between categories. Of the six emergent conversions (9%), bleeding and concern about common bile duct (CBD) injury were the main reasons. One CBD injury occurred.
In 49% of the cases, conversion was performed without a genuine attempt at laparoscopic dissection. Considering this new insight into the circumstances of conversion, the authors recommend that surgeons make a genuine effort at a laparoscopic approach, as reflected by placing four ports and trying to elevate the gallbladder before converting a case to an open approach.
Conversion; Gallbladder removal; Laparoscopic cholecystectomy
During persistent viral infection, adaptive immune responses are suppressed by immunoregulatory factors, contributing to viral persistence. Although this suppression is mediated by inhibitory factors, the mechanisms by which virus-specific T cells encounter and integrate immunoregulatory signals during persistent infection are unclear. We show that a distinct population of IL-10-expressing immunoregulatory antigen presenting cells (APC) is amplified during chronic versus acute lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCMV) infection and suppresses T cell responses. Although acute LCMV infection induces the expansion of immunoregulatory APC, they subsequently decline. However, during persistent LCMV infection, immunoregulatory APC are amplified and parallel the viral replication kinetics. Further characterization demonstrates that immunoregulatory APC are molecularly and metabolically distinct, and exhibit increased expression of T cell-interacting molecules and negative regulatory factors that suppress T cell responses. Thus, immunoregulatory APC are amplified during viral persistence and deliver inhibitory signals that suppress antiviral T cell immunity and likely contribute to persistent infection.
Impulse control disorders (ICDs), including disordered gambling, can occur in a significant number of patients with Parkinson’s disease (PD) receiving dopaminergic therapy. The neurobiology underlying susceptibility to such problems is unclear, but risk likely results from an interaction between dopaminergic medication and a pre-existing trait vulnerability. Impulse control and addictive disorders form part of a broader psychopathological spectrum of disorders, which share a common underlying genetic vulnerability, referred to as externalizing. The broad externalizing risk factor is a continuously varying trait reflecting vulnerability to various impulse control problems, manifested at the overt level by disinhibitory symptoms and at the personality level by antecedent traits such as impulsivity and novelty/sensation seeking. Trait “disinhibition” is thus a core endophenotype of ICDs, and a key target for neurobiological investigation. The ventral striatal dopamine system has been hypothesized to underlie individual variation in behavioral disinhibition. Here, we examined whether individual differences in ventral striatal dopamine synthesis capacity predicted individual variation in disinhibitory temperament traits in individuals with PD. Eighteen early-stage male PD patients underwent 6-[18F]Fluoro-l-DOPA (FDOPA) positron emission tomography scanning to measure striatal dopamine synthesis capacity, and completed a measure of disinhibited personality. Consistent with our predictions, we found that levels of ventral, but not dorsal, striatal dopamine synthesis capacity predicted disinhibited personality, particularly a propensity for financial extravagance. Our results are consistent with recent preclinical models of vulnerability to behavioral disinhibition and addiction proneness, and provide novel insights into the neurobiology of potential vulnerability to impulse control problems in PD and other disorders.
dopa decarboxylase; dopamine; disordered gambling; externalizing; impulse control disorders; impulsivity; reward; ventral striatum
Non-motor symptoms are present in Parkinson's disease (PD) and a key determinant of quality of life. The Non-motor Symptoms Scale (NMSS) is a validated scale that allows quantifying frequency and severity (burden) of NMS. We report a proposal for using NMSS scores to determine levels of NMS burden (NMSB) and to complete PD patient classification.
This was an observational, cross-sectional international study of 935 consecutive patients. Using a distribution of NMSS scores by quartiles, a classification based on levels from 0 (no NMSB at all) to 4 (very severe NMSB) was obtained and its relation with Hoehn and Yahr (HY) staging, motor and health-related quality of life scales was analyzed. Concordance between NMSB levels and grouping based on clinician's global impression of severity, using categorical regression, was determined. Disability and HRQoL predictors were identified by multiple regression models.
The distribution of motor and QoL scales scores by HY and NMSB levels was significantly discriminative. The difference in the classification of cases for both methods, HY and NMSB, was significant (gamma = 0.45; ASE = 0.032). Concordance between NMSB and global severity-based levels from categorical regression was 91.8%, (kappaw = 0.97). NMS score was predictor of disability and QoL.
Current clinical practice does not address a need for inclusion of non-motor scores in routine assessment of PD in spite of the overwhelming influence of NMS on disability and quality of life. Our data overcome the problems of “pure motor assessment” and we propose a combined approach with addition of NMSB levels to standard motor assessments.
Obesity has been associated with abnormally high expression of the enzyme aromatase in the breast, increased local estrogen production, and predisposition to breast hyperplasia and cancer. Increased adiposity in postmenopausal women may trigger signaling pathways that induce aromatase expression. In breast adipose fibroblasts, increased TNF production may induce the distal aromatase promoter, whereas increased local PGE2 production may induce the proximal promoter region. We review here the mechanisms that control aromatase gene expression in breast adipose tissue, and the paracrine interactions between malignant breast epithelial cells and the surrounding adipose fibroblasts. Systematic characterization of these signaling pathways will facilitate the identification of potential drug targets to selectively reduce aromatase expression and excessive estrogen production, with therapeutic benefit.
Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is a major global health concern with more than 30 million individuals currently infected world-wide. To date attempts to stimulate protective immunity to viral components of HIV have been unsuccessful in preventing or clearing infection. Lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus (LCMV) is an established murine model of persistent viral infection that has been instrumental in illuminating several critical aspects of anti-viral immunity. Although virologically the course of LCMV infection differs significantly from HIV, the immune responses and regulatory mechanisms elicited by these two viruses are markedly similar. In this review we discuss important recent findings in the LCMV model, highlighting the role of host-derived proteins in shaping immune responses to persistent infections, and explore the therapeutic potential of manipulating these pathways to enhance HIV vaccination strategies.
LCMV; HIV; T cell exhaustion; persistent viral infection; CD4 T cell; CD8 T cell; immune regulation
The immune system has evolved multipronged responses that are critical to effectively defend the body from invading pathogens and to clear infection. However, the same weapons employed to eradicate infection can have caustic effects on normal bystander cells. Therefore, tight regulation is vital and the host must balance engendering correct and sufficient immune responses to pathogens while limiting errant and excessive immunopathology. To accomplish this task a complex network of positive and negative immune signals are delivered that in most instances successfully eliminate pathogen. However, in response to some viral infections, immune function is rapidly suppressed leading to viral persistence. Immune suppression is a critical obstacle to the control of many persistent virus infections such as HIV, hepatitis C and hepatitis B virus, which together affect more than 500 million individuals worldwide. Thus, the ability to therapeutically enhance immunity is a potentially powerful approach to resolve persistent infections. The host derived cytokine IL-10 is a key player in the establishment and perpetuation of viral persistence. This chapter discusses the role of IL-10 in viral persistence and explores the exciting prospect of therapeutically blocking IL-10 to increase antiviral immunity and vaccine efficacy.
Amyloid PET tracers have been developed for in vivo detection of brain fibrillar amyloid deposition in Alzheimer’s disease (AD). To serve as an early biomarker in AD the amyloid PET tracers need to be analysed in multicentre clinical studies.
In this study 238 [11C]Pittsburgh compound-B (PIB) datasets from five different European centres were pooled. Of these 238 datasets, 18 were excluded, leaving [11C]PIB datasets from 97 patients with clinically diagnosed AD (mean age 69 ± 8 years), 72 patients with mild cognitive impairment (MCI; mean age 67.5 ± 8 years) and 51 healthy controls (mean age 67.4 ± 6 years) available for analysis. Of the MCI patients, 64 were longitudinally followed for 28 ± 15 months. Most participants (175 out of 220) were also tested for apolipoprotein E (ApoE) genotype.
[11C]PIB retention in the neocortical and subcortical brain regions was significantly higher in AD patients than in age-matched controls. Intermediate [11C]PIB retention was observed in MCI patients, with a bimodal distribution (64 % MCI PIB-positive and 36 % MCI PIB-negative), which was significantly different the pattern in both the AD patients and controls. Higher [11C]PIB retention was observed in MCI ApoE ε4 carriers compared to non-ApoE ε4 carriers (p < 0.005). Of the MCI PIB-positive patients, 67 % had converted to AD at follow-up while none of the MCI PIB-negative patients converted.
This study demonstrated the robustness of [11C]PIB PET as a marker of neocortical fibrillar amyloid deposition in brain when assessed in a multicentre setting. MCI PIB-positive patients showed more severe memory impairment than MCI PIB-negative patients and progressed to AD at an estimated rate of 25 % per year. None of the MCI PIB-negative patients converted to AD, and thus PIB negativity had a 100 % negative predictive value for progression to AD. This supports the notion that PIB-positive scans in MCI patients are an indicator of prodromal AD.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s00259-012-2237-2) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
Amyloid; Multicentre PET; PIB; MCI; Alzheimer’s disease; Mild cognitive impairment; Cognition
Microglial cell activation and cerebral function impairment are described in both chronic hepatitis C viral (HCV) and Human-Immune-Deficiency viral (HIV) infections. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of acute HCV infection upon cerebral function and microglial cell activation in HIV-infected individuals.
A case-control study was conducted. Subjects with acute HCV and chronic HIV coinfection (aHCV) were compared to matched controls with chronic HIV monoinfection (HIVmono). aHCV was defined as a new positive plasma HCV RNA within 12 months of a negative RNA test. Subjects underwent neuro-cognitive testing (NCT), cerebral proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy (1H-MRS) and positron emission tomography (PET) using a 11C-radiolabeled ligand (PK11195), which is highly specific for translocator protein 18 kDA receptors on activated microglial cells. Differences between cases and controls were assessed using linear regression modelling.
Twenty-four aHCV cases completed NCT and 1H-MRS, 8 underwent PET. Of 57 HIVmono controls completing NCT, 12 underwent 1H-MRS and 8 PET. Subjects with aHCV demonstrated on NCT, significantly poorer executive function (mean (SD) error rate 26.50(17.87) versus 19.09(8.12), p = 0.001) and on 1H-MRS increased myo-inositol/creatine ratios (mI/Cr, a marker of cerebral inflammation) in the basal ganglia (ratio of 0.71(0.22) versus 0.55(0.23), p = 0.03), compared to subjects with HIVmono. On PET imaging, no difference in 11C-PK11195 binding potential (BP) was observed between study groups (p>0.10 all cerebral locations), however lower BPs were associated with combination antiretroviral therapy (cART) use in the parietal (p = 0.01) and frontal (p = 0.03) cerebral locations.
Poorer cognitive performance and disturbance of cerebral metabolites are observed in subjects with aHC,V compared to subjects with HIVmono. Higher 11C-PK11195 BP was not observed in subjects with aHCV, but was observed in subjects not on cART.
Investigate the efficacy and pharmacodynamic effects of MK-1775, a potent Wee1 inhibitor, in both monotherapy and in combination with gemcitabine using a panel of p53-deficient and p53-wild type human pancreatic cancer xenografts.
Nine individual patient-derived pancreatic cancer xenografts (six with p53-deficient and three with p53-wild type status) from the PancXenoBank collection at Johns Hopkins were treated with MK-1775, gemcitabine or gemcitabine followed 24 h later by MK-1775 for 4 weeks. Tumor growth rate/regressions were calculated on day 28. Target modulation was assessed by western blot and IHC.
MK-1775 treatment led to the inhibition of Wee1 kinase and reduced inhibitory phosphorylation of its substrate Cdc2. MK-1775, when dosed with gemcitabine, abrogated the checkpoint arrest to promote mitotic entry and facilitated tumor cell death as compared to control and gemcitabine treated tumors. MK-1775 monotherapy did not induce tumor regressions. However, the combination of gemcitabine with MK-1775 produced robust anti-tumor activity and remarkably enhanced tumor regression response (4.01 fold) compared to gemcitabine treatment in p53-deficient tumors. Tumor re-growth curves plotted after the drug treatment period suggest that the effect of the combination therapy is longer-lasting than that of gemcitabine. None of the agents produced tumor regressions in p53-wild type xenografts.
These results indicate that MK-1775 selectively synergizes with gemcitabine to achieve tumor regressions, selectively in p53-deficient pancreatic cancer xenografts.
MK-1775; Wee1 kinase; pancreatic cancer; chemotherapy; cell cycle inhibitor
This positron emission tomography (PET) study aimed to further define selectivity of [11C]Ro15-4513 binding to the GABARα5 relative to the GABARα1 benzodiazepine receptor subtype. The impact of zolpidem, a GABARα1-selective agonist, on [11C]Ro15-4513, which shows selectivity for GABARα5, and the nonselective benzodiazepine ligand [11C]flumazenil binding was assessed in humans. Compartmental modelling of the kinetics of [11C]Ro15-4513 time-activity curves was used to describe distribution volume (VT) differences in regions populated by different GABA receptor subtypes. Those with low α5 were best fitted by one-tissue compartment models; and those with high α5 required a more complex model. The heterogeneity between brain regions suggested spectral analysis as a more appropriate method to quantify binding as it does not a priori specify compartments. Spectral analysis revealed that zolpidem caused a significant VT decrease (∼10%) in [11C]flumazenil, but no decrease in [11C]Ro15-4513 binding. Further analysis of [11C]Ro15-4513 kinetics revealed additional frequency components present in regions containing both α1 and α5 subtypes compared with those containing only α1. Zolpidem reduced one component (mean±s.d.: 71%±41%), presumed to reflect α1-subtype binding, but not another (13%±22%), presumed to reflect α5. The proposed method for [11C]Ro15-4513 analysis may allow more accurate selective binding assays and estimation of drug occupancy for other nonselective ligands.
GABA; imaging; kinetic modelling; pharmacokinetics; positron emission tomography
Dengue fever is a mosquito-borne viral disease estimated to cause about 230 million infections worldwide every year, of which 25,000 are fatal. Global incidence has risen rapidly in recent decades with some 3.6 billion people, over half of the world's population, now at risk, mainly in urban centres of the tropics and subtropics. Demographic and societal changes, in particular urbanization, globalization, and increased international travel, are major contributors to the rise in incidence and geographic expansion of dengue infections. Major research gaps continue to hamper the control of dengue. The European Commission launched a call under the 7th Framework Programme with the title of ‘Comprehensive control of Dengue fever under changing climatic conditions’. Fourteen partners from several countries in Europe, Asia, and South America formed a consortium named ‘DengueTools’ to respond to the call to achieve better diagnosis, surveillance, prevention, and predictive models and improve our understanding of the spread of dengue to previously uninfected regions (including Europe) in the context of globalization and climate change.
The consortium comprises 12 work packages to address a set of research questions in three areas:
Research area 1: Develop a comprehensive early warning and surveillance system that has predictive capability for epidemic dengue and benefits from novel tools for laboratory diagnosis and vector monitoring.
Research area 2: Develop novel strategies to prevent dengue in children.
Research area 3: Understand and predict the risk of global spread of dengue, in particular the risk of introduction and establishment in Europe, within the context of parameters of vectorial capacity, global mobility, and climate change.
In this paper, we report on the rationale and specific study objectives of ‘DengueTools’. DengueTools is funded under the Health theme of the Seventh Framework Programme of the European Community, Grant Agreement Number: 282589 Dengue Tools.
dengue; dengue control; dengue diagnostics; economic evaluation; entomology; climate change; early warning systems; risk mapping; surveillance; globalization
[11C]Pittsburgh Compound B positron emission tomography has now been extensively used to evaluate the amyloid load in different types of dementia and has become a powerful research tool in the field of neurodegenerative diseases. In the present short review we discuss the properties of amyloid imaging agent [11C]Pittsburgh Compound B, the different modalities of molecular imaging, image processing and data analysis, and newer amyloid imaging agents.
Ecstasy (±3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine, MDMA) is a popular recreational drug with known serotonergic neurotoxicity. Its long-term effects on dopaminergic function are less certain. Studying the long-term effects of ecstasy is often confounded by concomitant polydrug use and the short duration of abstinence. We used 18F-dopa positron emission tomography (PET) to investigate the long-term effects of ecstasy on nigrostriatal dopaminergic function in a group of male ex-recreational users of ecstasy who had been abstinent for a mean of 3.22 years. We studied 14 ex-ecstasy users (EEs), 14 polydrug-using controls (PCs) (matched to the ex-users for other recreational drug use), and 12 drug-naive controls (DCs). Each participant underwent one 18F-dopa PET, cognitive assessments, and hair and urinary analyses to corroborate drug-use history. The putamen 18F-dopa uptake of EEs was 9% higher than that of DCs (p=0.021). The putamen uptake rate of PCs fell between the other two groups, suggesting that the hyperdopaminergic state in EEs may be due to the combined effects of ecstasy and polydrug use. There was no relationship between the amount of ecstasy used and striatal 18F-dopa uptake. Increased putaminal 18F-dopa uptake in EEs after an abstinence of >3 years (mean) suggests that the effects are long lasting. Our findings suggest potential long-term effects of ecstasy use, in conjunction with other recreational drugs, on nigrostriatal dopaminergic functions. Further longitudinal studies are required to elucidate the significance of these findings as they may have important public health implications.
MDMA; ecstasy; addiction; dopamine; F-dopa; PET; addiction & substance abuse; dopamine; imaging, clinical or preclinical; psychopharmacology; ecstasy
Persistent virus infection drives follicular T helper cell differentiation.
CD4 T cell responses are crucial to prevent and control viral infection; however, virus-specific CD4 T cell activity is considered to be rapidly lost during many persistent viral infections. This is largely caused by the fact that during viral persistence CD4 T cells do not produce the classical Th1 cytokines associated with control of acute viral infections. Considering that CD4 T cell help is critical for both CD8 T cell and B cell functions, it is unclear how CD4 T cells can lose responsiveness but continue to sustain long-term control of persistent viral replication. We now demonstrate that CD4 T cell function is not extinguished as a result of viral persistence. Instead, viral persistence and prolonged T cell receptor stimulation progressively redirects CD4 T cell development away from the Th1 response induced during an acute infection toward T follicular helper cells. Importantly, this sustained CD4 T cell functionality is critical to maintain immunity and ultimately aid in the control of persistent viral infection.
Ecstasy (MDMA) is a popular recreational drug with known serotonergic neurotoxicity. Its long-term effects on dopaminergic function are less certain. Studying the long-term effects of ecstasy is often confounded by concomitant polydrug use and the short duration of abstinence. We used 18F-dopa positron emission tomography (PET) to investigate the long-term effects of ecstasy on nigrostriatal dopaminergic function in a group of male ex-recreational users of ecstasy who had been abstinent for a mean 3·22 years. We studied 14 ex-ecstasy users, 14 polydrug-using controls (matched to the ex-users for other recreational drug use) and 12 drug-naïve controls. Each participant underwent one 18F-dopa PET, cognitive assessments, and hair and urinary analysis to corroborate drug use history. The putamen 18F-dopa uptake of ex-ecstasy users was 9% higher than drug-naïve controls (p=0·021). The putamen uptake of polydrug-using controls fell between the other two groups, suggesting the hyperdopaminergic state in ex-ecstasy users may be due to the combined effects of ecstasy and polydrug use. There was no relationship between the amount of ecstasy use and striatal 18F-dopa uptake. Increased putaminal 18F-dopa uptake in ex-ecstasy users after an abstinence of over three years (mean) suggests that the effects are long-lasting. Our findings suggest potential long-term effects of ecstasy use, in conjunction with other recreational drugs, on nigrostriatal dopaminergic functions. Further longitudinal studies are needed to elucidate the significance of these findings as they may have important public health implications.
MDMA; ecstasy; addiction; dopamine; F-dopa; PET
Vigorous T cell responses are critical for the control of viral infections. However, in some instances antiviral T cell responses are suppressed resulting in viral persistence. The loss of T cell function is regulated by a variety of host-based immunosuppressive factors that directly inhibit antiviral immunity and prevent viral clearance. Nevertheless, residual levels of T cell activity are actively sustained to exert an important degree of control over persistent virus replication. How T cells are differentially regulated in response to persistent infection and the positive and negative signals that result in these divergent functional responses are just now beginning to come to light. Unraveling this complex dual counter-regulation of T cell responses during persistent virus infection will provide valuable insight toward the development of therapies to overcome immune suppression and stimulate T cell responses to eliminate persistent viral replication. In this review we will highlight this emerging field and discuss the complex interplay between immune-modulatory factors that suppress and sustain antiviral immunity to control and in some instances eliminate persistent viral replication.
To compare the recovery of mobility and self-care functions among veteran amputees according to the timing and type of rehabilitation services received.
Observational study of inpatient rehabilitation care patterns of 2 types (specialized and consultative) with 2 timings (early and late).
Data from inpatient specialized rehabilitation units (SRUs) and consultative services within 95 Veterans Affairs Medical Centers across the United States during fiscal years 2003-2004.
Medical records of 1,502 patients who received early or late consultative or specialized rehabilitation.
Assessment of risk factors
Hypotheses were established and general categories of negative and positive risk factors specified a priori from available clinical characteristics. Linear mixed effects models were used to model motor Functional Independence Measure (FIM™) gain scores on patient-level variables accounting for the correlation within the same facility.
Main outcome measures
Recovery of activities of daily living (ADLs) and mobility (physical functioning) expressed as the magnitudes of gains in motor FIM™ scores achieved by rehabilitation discharge.
After adjustment, amputees who received specialized rehabilitation had motor FIM™ gains that were on average 8.0 points higher than those amputees who received consultative rehabilitation. Although patients whose rehabilitation was delayed until after discharge from the index surgical stay tended to be more clinically complex, they had comparable gains to patients who received early rehabilitation. Advanced age, trans-femoral amputation, paralysis, serious nutritional compromise, and psychosis were associated with lower motor FIM™ gains. The variance for the random effect for facility was statistically significant, suggesting extraneous variation within facility that was not explainable by observed patient-level variables.
Based on this analysis, those patients who receive specialized rehabilitation can be expected to make comparatively higher gains than patients who receive consultative services, regardless of timing and clinical complexity. Findings highlight the need for clinicians to adjust prognostic expectations to both clinical severity and the type of rehabilitation patients receive.
Carotid body (CB) glomus cells are highly dopaminergic and express the glial cell line derived neurotrophic factor. The intrastriatal grafting of CB cell aggregates exerts neurotrophic actions on nigrostriatal neurons in animal models of Parkinson disease (PD).
We conducted a phase I–II clinical study to assess the feasibility, long term safety, clinical and neurochemical effects of intrastriatal CB autotransplantation in patients with PD.
Thirteen patients with advanced PD underwent bilateral stereotactic implantation of CB cell aggregates into the striatum. They were assessed before surgery and up to 1–3 years after surgery according to CAPIT (Core Assessment Programme for Intracerebral Transplantation) and CAPSIT‐PD (Core Assessment Programme for Surgical Interventional Therapies in Parkinson's Disease) protocols. The primary outcome measure was the change in video blinded Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale III score in the off‐medication state. Seven patients had 18F‐dopa positron emission tomography scans before and 1 year after transplantation.
Clinical amelioration in the primary outcome measure was observed in 10 of 12 blindly analysed patients, which was maximal at 6–12 months after transplantation (5–74%). Overall, mean improvement at 6 months was 23%. In the long term (3 years), 3 of 6 patients still maintained improvement (15–48%). None of the patients developed off‐period dyskinesias. The main predictive factors for motor improvement were the histological integrity of the CB and a milder disease severity. We observed a non‐significant 5% increase in mean putaminal 18F‐dopa uptake but there was an inverse relationship between clinical amelioration and annual decline in putaminal 18F‐dopa uptake (r = −0.829; p = 0.042).
CB autotransplantation may induce clinical effects in patients with advanced PD which seem partly related to the biological properties of the implanted glomus cells.
Persistent levels of IL-10 play a central role in progressive immune dysfunction associated with chronic viral infections such as HIV, but the underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. Because IL-10 affects the phenotypic and functional properties of DCs, which are responsible for initiating adaptive immune responses, we investigated whether IL-10 induces changes in DC phenotype and function in the context of HIV infection. Here, we show that IL-10 treatment of immature and mature human DCs in culture induced contrasting phenotypic changes in these populations: immature DCs exhibited aberrant resistance to NK cell–mediated elimination, whereas mature DCs exhibited increased susceptibility to NKG2D-dependent NK elimination. Treatment of immature and mature DCs with HIV resulted in potent IL-10 secretion and the same phenotypic and functional changes observed in the IL-10–treated cells. Consistent with these in vitro data, LNs isolated from individuals infected with HIV exhibited aberrant accumulation of a partially “immature” DC population. Together, these data suggest that the progressive immune dysfunction observed in chronic viral infections might be caused in part by IL-10–induced reversal of DC susceptibility to NK cell–mediated elimination, resulting in the accumulation of poorly immunogenic DCs in LNs, the sites of adaptive immune response induction.
Persistent viral infections are a major health concern worldwide. During persistent infection, overwhelming viral replication and the rapid loss of antiviral T-cell function can prevent immune-mediated clearance of the infection, and therapies to reanimate the immune response and purge persistent viruses have been largely unsuccessful. Adoptive immunotherapy using memory T cells is a highly successful therapeutic approach to eradicate a persistent viral infection. Understanding precisely how therapeutically administered memory T cells achieve clearance should improve our ability to terminate states of viral persistence in humans. Mice persistently infected from birth with lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus are tolerant to the pathogen at the T-cell level and thus provide an excellent model to evaluate immunotherapeutic regimens. Previously, we demonstrated that adoptively transferred memory T cells require recipient dendritic cells to effectively purge an established persistent viral infection. However, the mechanisms that reactivate and sustain memory T-cell responses during clearance of such an infection remain unclear. Here we establish that therapeutic memory T cells require CD80 and CD86 costimulatory signals to efficiently clear an established persistent viral infection in vivo. Early blockade of costimulatory pathways with CTLA-4-Fc decreased the secondary expansion of virus-specific CD8+ and CD4+ memory T cells as well as their ability to produce antiviral cytokines and purge the persistent infection. Late costimulation blockade also reduced virus-specific T-cell numbers, illustrating that sustained interactions with costimulatory molecules is required for efficient T-cell expansion. These findings indicate that antiviral memory T cells require costimulation to efficiently clear a persistent viral infection and that costimulatory pathways can be targeted to modulate the magnitude of an adoptive immunotherapeutic regimen.