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1.  International study of factors affecting human chromosome translocations 
Mutation research  2008;652(2):112-121.
Chromosome translocations in peripheral blood lymphocytes of normal, healthy humans increase with age, but the effects of gender, race, and cigarette smoking on background translocation yields have not been examined systematically. Further, the shape of the relationship between age and translocation frequency (TF) has not been definitively determined. We collected existing data from sixteen laboratories in North America, Europe, and Asia on TFs measured in peripheral blood lymphocytes by fluorescence in situ hybridization whole chromosome painting among 1933 individuals. In Poisson regression models, age, ranging from newborns (cord blood) to 85 years, was strongly associated with TF and this relationship showed significant upward curvature at older ages vs. a linear relationship (p <0.001). Ever smokers had significantly higher TFs than non-smokers (rate ratio (RR) = 1.19, 95% confidence interval (CI), 1.09–1.30) and smoking modified the effect of age on TFs with a steeper age-related increase among ever smokers compared to non-smokers (p<0.001). TFs did not differ by gender. Interpreting an independent effect of race was difficult owing to laboratory variation. Our study is three times larger than any pooled effort to date, confirming a suspected curvilinear relationship of TF with age. The significant effect of cigarette smoking has not been observed with previous pooled studies of TF in humans. Our data provide stable estimates of background TF by age, gender, race, and smoking status and suggest an acceleration of chromosome damage above age 60 and among those with a history of smoking cigarettes.
PMCID: PMC2696320  PMID: 18337160
chromosome translocations; background frequency; controls; fluorescence in situ hybridization
2.  Improved Identification of Mycobacteria by Using the Microbial Identification System in Combination with Additional Trimethylsulfonium Hydroxide Pyrolysis 
Journal of Clinical Microbiology  1998;36(9):2477-2480.
The MIDI automated Microbial Identification System (MIS) uses gas chromatography (GC) analysis of whole-cell fatty acid methyl esters (FAMEs) between 9 and 20 carbons in length to characterize a wide range of bacterial genera and species, including mycobacteria. Mycolic acid cleavage products (MACPs) with chain lengths of C22 to C26 are not released by MIDI sample preparation of mycobacteria. Therefore, the MIS library search report often matches several mycobacterial species without any significant difference in the similarity indices. The problem is solved by adding trimethylsulfonium hydroxide (TMSH) instead of sodium sulfate in the last step of sample preparation, thus allowing the identification of MACPs in addition to FAMEs. Only one GC run parameter has to be changed: the temperature program must be extended from 260 to 310°C. The MIS library search report for the identification of bacteria is not disturbed by TMSH. The combination of conventional library search report with the information of typical MACP patterns yields significantly better discrimination of mycobacterial species than the MIDI method allows.
PMCID: PMC105147  PMID: 9705377

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