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1.  Transplacental Transmission of Bluetongue Virus Serotype 1 and Serotype 8 in Sheep: Virological and Pathological Findings 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(12):e81429.
The Bluetongue virus serotype 8 (BTV-8) strain, which emerged in Europe in 2006, had an unusually high ability to cause foetal infection in pregnant ruminants. Other serotypes of BTV had already been present in Europe for more than a decade, but transplacental transmission of these strains had never been demonstrated. To determine whether transplacental transmission is a unique feature of BTV-8 we compared the incidence and pathological consequences of transplacental transmission of BTV-8 to that of BTV-1. Nine pregnant ewes were infected with either BTV-8 or BTV-1. The BTV strains used for the infection were field strains isolated on embryonated chicken eggs and passaged twice on mammalian cells. Blood samples were taken to monitor the viraemia in the ewes. Four weeks after the infection, the foetuses were examined for pathological changes and for the presence of BTV. BTV-8 could be demonstrated in 12 foetuses (43%) from 5 ewes (56%). %). BTV-1 was detected in 14 foetuses (82%) from 6 ewes (67%). Pathological changes were mainly found in the central nervous system. In the BTV-8 group, lympho-histiocytic infiltrates, gliosis and slight vacuolation of the neuropil were found. BTV-1infection induced a severe necrotizing encephalopathy and severe meningitis, with macroscopic hydranencephaly or porencephaly in 8 foetuses. In our experimental setting, using low passaged virus strains, BTV-1 was able to induce transplacental transmission to a higher incidence compared to BTV-8, causing more severe pathology.
PMCID: PMC3864790  PMID: 24358112
2.  Local dynamic stability as a responsive index for the evaluation of rehabilitation effect on fall risk in patients with multiple sclerosis: a longitudinal study 
BMC Research Notes  2013;6:260.
Gait and balance problems are common in patients with multiple sclerosis, leading to high risk for falls. Local Dynamic Stability (LDS), a non-linear gait stability index, has been advocated as an early indicator of risk for falls. With this longitudinal study over three weeks, we aimed to assess the responsiveness of Local Dynamic Stability to a rehabilitation program and to compare it to other measures.
Eighteen patients (mean 54 years, median EDSS score: 5) participated. They were admitted to inpatient rehabilitation and received a three weeks individually tailored program. They performed a 3-minute walking test at the beginning and at the end of the stay, as well as pain, wellbeing, fatigue, and balance assessment. The Local Dynamic Stability was computed from the acceleration signals measured with a 3D-accelerometer.
At the end of the rehabilitation process, patients reported reduced pain (Effect Size: −0.7), fatigue (ES:-0.6), and increased wellbeing (ES: 1.1). A small positive effect on static balance was observed (ES: 0.3). LDS was improved (ES: 0.6), and the effect was higher than walking speed improvement (ES: 0.4).
The Local Dynamic Stability seemed responsive to assess rehabilitation effects in patients with multiple sclerosis. It could constitute a valuable gait quality index, which could evaluate potential effects of rehabilitation on fall risk.
Trial registration
Current Controlled Trials ISRCTN69803702.
PMCID: PMC3720262  PMID: 23835061
Gait; Maximal Lyapunov exponent; Accelerometer; Dynamic balance
3.  Electric Potential Across Epidermis and Its Role During Wound Healing Can Be Studied by Using an In Vitro Reconstructed Human Skin 
Advances in Wound Care  2012;1(2):81-87.
After human epidermis wounding, transepithelial potential (TEP) present in nonlesional epidermis decreases and induces an endogenous direct current epithelial electric field (EEF) that could be implicated in the wound re-epithelialization. Some studies suggest that exogenous electric stimulation of wounds can stimulate healing, although the mechanisms remain to be determined.
The Problem
Little is known concerning the exact action of the EEF during healing. The mechanism responsible for TEP and EEF is unknown due to the lack of an in vitro model to study this phenomenon.
Basic Science Advances
We carried out studies by using a wound created in a human tissue-engineered skin and determined that TEP undergoes ascending and decreasing phases during the epithelium formation. The in vitro TEP measurements over time in the wound were corroborated with histological changes and with in vivo TEP variations during porcine skin wound healing. The expression of a crucial element implicated in Na+ transport, Na+/K+ ATPase pumps, was also evaluated at the same time points during the re-epithelialization process. The ascending and decreasing TEP values were correlated with changes in the expression of these pumps. The distribution of Na+/K+ ATPase pumps also varied according to epidermal differentiation. Further, inhibition of the pump activity induced a significant decrease of the TEP and of the re-epithelization rate.
Clinical Care Relevance
A better comprehension of the role of EEF could have important future medical applications regarding the treatment of chronic wound healing.
This study brings a new perspective to understand the formation and restoration of TEP during the cutaneous wound healing process.
PMCID: PMC3839018  PMID: 24527285
4.  Apoptosis Modulation as a Promising Target for Treatment of Systemic Sclerosis 
Diffuse systemic sclerosis (SSc) is a fatal autoimmune disease characterized by an excessive ECM deposition inducing a loss of function of skin and internal organs. Apoptosis is a key mechanism involved in all the stages of the disease: vascular damage, immune dysfunction, and fibrosis. The purpose of this paper is to gather new findings in apoptosis related to SSc, to highlight relations between apoptosis and fibrosis, and to identify new therapeutic targets.
PMCID: PMC3170778  PMID: 21912551
5.  B Lymphocytes Regulate Dendritic Cell (Dc) Function in Vivo 
Increasing evidence indicates that dendritic cells (DCs) are the antigen-presenting cells of the primary immune response. However, several reports suggest that B lymphocytes could be required for optimal T cell sensitization. We compared the immune responses of wild-type and B cell-deficient (μMT) mice, induced by antigen emulsified in adjuvant or pulsed on splenic dendritic cells. Our data show that lymph node cells from both control and μMT animals were primed, but each released distinct cytokine profiles. Lymph node T cells from control animals secreted interferon (IFN)-γ, interleukin (IL)-2, and IL-4, whereas those from μMT mice produced IFN-γ and IL-2 but no IL-4. To test whether B cells may influence the T helper cell type 1 (Th1)/Th2 balance by affecting the function of DCs, we immunized mice by transferring antigen-pulsed DCs from wild-type or mutant mice. Injection of control DCs induced the secretion of IL-4, IFN-γ, and IL-2, whereas administration of DCs from μMT animals failed to sensitize cells to produce IL-4. Analysis of IL-12 production revealed that DCs from μMT mice produce higher levels of IL-12p70 than do DCs from wild-type animals. These data suggest that B lymphocytes regulate the capacity of DCs to promote IL-4 secretion, possibly by downregulating their secretion of IL-12, thereby favoring the induction of a nonpolarized immune response.
PMCID: PMC2193241  PMID: 10952717
T helper cell type 1/type 2 balance; primary response; interleukin 4; interleukin 10; dendritic–B cell interaction

Results 1-5 (5)