Lentic freshwater systems including those inhabited by aquatic stages of mosquitoes derive most of their carbon inputs from terrestrial organic matter mainly leaf litter. The leaf litter is colonized by microbial communities that provide the resource base for mosquito larvae. While the microbial biomass associated with different leaf species in container aquatic habitats is well documented, the taxonomic composition of these microbes and their response to common environmental stressors is poorly understood. We used indoor aquatic microcosms to determine the abundances of major taxonomic groups of bacteria in leaf litters from seven plant species and their responses to low concentrations of four pesticides with different modes of action on the target organisms; permethrin, malathion, atrazine and glyphosate. We tested the hypotheses that leaf species support different quantities of major taxonomic groups of bacteria and that exposure to pesticides at environmentally relevant concentrations alters bacterial abundance and community structure in mosquito larval habitats. We found support for both hypotheses suggesting that leaf litter identity and chemical contamination may alter the quality and quantity of mosquito food base (microbial communities) in larval habitats. The effect of pesticides on microbial communities varied significantly among leaf types, suggesting that the impact of pesticides on natural microbial communities may be highly complex and difficult to predict. Collectively, these findings demonstrate the potential for detritus composition within mosquito larval habitats and exposure to pesticides to influence the quality of mosquito larval habitats.
The aim of this study was to evaluate long-term oncologic outcomes after concurrent chemoradiation treatment for anal cancer.
Materials and Methods
Between January 1979 and December 2008, the records of 50 consecutive patients with anal cancer and who were treated by chemoradiation or radiation only with a curative intent were retrospectively reviewed. The oncologic outcomes and the risk factors for recurrence were analyzed.
Of the 50 patients, 49 underwent concurrent chemoradiation and one underwent radiation only. After these definitive treatments, 43 (86.0%) achieved a clinical complete response. During the median follow-up of 60 months (range: 2-202 months), the 5-year overall survival, disease-free survival, and locoregional recurrence-free survival were 84.2%, 72.7%, and 69.9%, respectively. Multivariate analysis revealed that the performance status (p=0.031) and a clinical complete response (p=0.039) were the independent predictors for overall survival; lymph node involvement (p=0.031) was the only independent predictor for disease-free survival.
The performance status and a clinical complete response may be reliable predictors of survival after chemoradiation for anal cancer. The addition of irradiation to the inguinal area may not be significantly associated with the outcomes.
Anal cancer; concurrent chemoradiation; prognosis
Gangliosides are ubiquitous components of the membranes of mammalian cells that are thought to play important roles in various cell functions such as cell-cell interaction, cell adhesion, cell differentiation, growth control, and signaling. However, the role that gangliosides play in the immune rejection response after xenotransplantation is not yet clearly understood. In this study, the regulatory effects of human leukocytes on ganglioside expression in primary cultured micro-pig aortic endothelial cells (PAECs) were investigated. To determine the impact of human leukocytes on the expression of gangliosides in PAECs, we performed high-performance thin layer chromatography (HPTLC) in PAECs incubated with FBS, FBS containing human leukocytes, human serum containing human leukocytes, and FBS containing TNF-α. Both HPTLC and immunohistochemistry analyses revealed that PAECs incubated with FBS predominantly express the gangliosides GM3, GM1, and GD3. However, the expression of GM1 significantly decreased in PAECs incubated for 5 h with TNF-α (10 ng/mL), 10% human serum containing human leukocytes, and 10% FBS containing human leukocytes. Taken together, these results suggest that human leukocytes induced changes in the expression profile of ganglioside GM1 similar to those seen upon treatment of PAECs with TNF-α. This finding may be relevant for designing future therapeutic strategies intended to prolong xenograft survival.
Micro-pig aortic endothelial cells; human serum; human leukocyte; tumor necrosis factor-α; ganglioside GM1
The purpose of this large prospective study is to assess the association between the disappearance of the lateral spread response (LSR) before and after microvascular decompression (MVD) and clinical long term results over two years following hemifacial spasm (HFS) treatment.
Continuous intra-operative monitoring during MVD was performed in 244 consecutive patients with HFS. Patients with persistent LSR after decompression (n=22, 9.0%), without LSR from the start of the surgery (n=4, 1.7%), and with re-operation (n=15, 6.1%) and follow-up loss (n=4, 1.7%) were excluded. For the statistical analysis, patients were categorized into two groups according to the disappearance of their LSR before or after MVD.
Intra-operatively, the LSR was checked during facial electromyogram monitoring in 199 (81.5%) of the 244 patients. The mean follow-up duration was 40.9±6.9 months (range 25-51 months) in all the patients. Among them, the LSR disappeared after the decompression (Group A) in 128 (64.3%) patients; but in the remaining 71 (35.6%) patients, the LSR disappeared before the decompression (Group B). In the post-operative follow-up visits over more than one year, there were significant differences between the clinical outcomes of the two groups (p<0.05).
It was observed that the long-term clinical outcomes of the intra-operative LSR disappearance before and after MVD were correlated. Thus, this factor may be considered a prognostic factor of HFS after MVD.
Clinical outcome; Hemifacial spasm; Lateral spread response; Microvascular decompression
Preoperative chemoradiotherapy is now widely accepted to treat rectal cancer; however, the prognosis for rectal cancer patients during and after chemoradiotherapy must be determined. The aim of this study was to evaluate the serial serum carcinoembryonic antigen (s-CEA) samples in patients with rectal cancer who underwent radical surgery after concurrent chemoradiotherapy (CRT).
This study evaluated 236 patients with rectal cancer who received preoperative CRT followed by curative surgery between June 2005 and June 2010. We measured the patient's s-CEA levels pre-CRT, post-CRT and post-surgery. Patients were classified into four groups according to their s-CEA concentrations (group 1, high, high, high; group 2, high, high, normal; group 3, high, normal, normal; group 4, normal, normal, normal). We analyzed the clinicopathologic factors and the outcomes among these groups.
Of the 236 patients, 12 were in group 1, 31 were in group 2, 67 were in group 3, and 126 were in group 4. The 3-year disease-free survival rate in group 1 was poorer than those in group 3 (P = 0.007) and group 4 (P < 0.001). In a univariate analysis, type of surgery, clinical N stage, pathologic T or N stage, lymphovascular invasion, perineural invasion, and CEA group were prognostic factors. A multivariate analysis revealed that type of surgery, pathologic T stage, and lymphovascular invasion were independent prognostic factors; however, no statistical significance was associated with the CEA group.
High pre-CRT, post-CRT, and post-surgery s-CEA levels in patients with rectal cancer were associated with high rates of systemic recurrence and poor survival. Therefore, patients with sustained high s-CEA levels during CRT require careful monitoring after surgery.
Rectal neoplasms; Carcinoembryonic antigen; Chemoradiotherapy
Rapid reduction of a large acute subdural hematoma has been frequently reported. In my knowledge, however, it was rarely reported that rapid spontaneous reduction occurred in large volume of spontaneous intracerebral hematoma (sICH). We describe a patient with a rapid spontaneous decrease in the volume of a large hematoma. A 73-year-old man presented semi-comatose mentality. Initial brain computed tomography (CT) revealed the huge sICH. An emergency operation was planned, but was not performed due to the refusal of patient's family. Therefore, we decided to treat with conservative therapy. However, follow-up brain CT 16 hours after initial scan showed a remarkable reduction of previous sICH. The mechanism involving the spontaneous rapid decrease of the hematoma is presumed to occur through redistribution in brain atrophy, compression effect from the increased intracranial pressure and dilution through a wash out by the cerebrospinal fluid.
Intracerebral hematoma; Spontaneous reduction; Redistribution
The human colorectal carcinoma-associated GA733 antigen epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAM) was initially described as a cell surface protein selectively expressed in some myeloid cancers. Gangliosides are sialic acid-containing glycosphingolipids involved in inflammation and oncogenesis. We have demonstrated that treatment with anti-EpCAM mAb and RAW264.7 cells significant inhibited the cell growth in SW620 cancer cells, but neither anti-EpCAM mAb nor RAW264.7 cells alone induced cytotoxicity. The relationship between ganglioside expression and the anti-cancer effects of anti-EpCAM mAb and RAW264.7 was investigated by high-performance thin-layer chromatography. The results demonstrated that expression of GM1 and GD1a significantly increased in the ability of anti-EpCAM to inhibit cell growth in SW620 cells. Anti-EpCAM mAb treatment increased the expression of anti-apoptotic proteins such as Bcl-2, but the expression of pro-apoptotic proteins Bax, TNF-α, caspase-3, cleaved caspase-3, and cleaved caspase-8 were unaltered. We observed that anti-EpCAM mAb significantly inhibited the growth of colon tumors, as determined by a decrease in tumor volume and weight. The expression of anti-apoptotic protein was inhibited by treatment with anti-EpCAM mAb, whereas the expression of pro-apoptotic proteins was increased. These results suggest that GD1a and GM1 were closely related to anticancer effects of anti-EpCAM mAb. In light of these results, further clinical investigation should be conducted on anti-EpCAM mAb to determine its possible chemopreventive and/or therapeutic efficacy against human colon cancer.
antibodies, monoclonal; apoptosis; colon neoplasms; EPCAM protein, human; gangliosides; macrophages
The aim of this study is to investigate the clinical outcomes of surgery and coiling and analyze the predicting factors affecting the clinical outcomes of ruptured posterior inferior cerebellar artery (PICA) aneurysms.
During the last 15 years, 20 consecutive patients with ruptured PICA aneurysms were treated and these patients were included in this study. The Fisher's exact test was used for the statistical significance of Glasgow Outcome Scale (GOS) according to initial Hunt-Hess (H-H) grade, treatment modalities, and the presence of acute hydrocephalus.
Eleven (55%) and nine (45%) patients were treated with surgical clipping and endovascular treatment, respectively. Among 20 patients, thirteen (65.0%) patients had good outcomes (GOS 4 or 5). There was the statistical significance between initial poor H-H grade, the presence of acute hydrocephalus and poor GOS.
In our study, we suggest that initial H-H grade and the presence of acute hydrocephalus may affect the clinical outcome rather than treatment modalities in the ruptured PICA aneurysms.
Aneurysm; Endovascular treatment; Posterior inferior cerebellar artery; Subarachnoid hemorrhage; Surgical clipping
Interaction of aquatic stages of coexisting mosquito species may have significant influence on resulting adult mosquito populations. We used two coexisting species, Anopheles gambiae s.s. and Culex quinquefasciatus to investigate whether third instars of one species consumed first instars of the other. First instars of one species were readily consumed by a third instar of the other species irrespective food quantity. DNA of Cx. quinquefasciatus was detected in the eight An. gambiae s.s. third instars presumed to have consumed at least one Cx. quinquefasciatus first instar. Likewise, DNA of An. gambiae s.s. was detected in five of eight Cx. quinquefasciatus third instars presumed to have consumed at least one An. gambiae s.s. first instar. A small number of dead first instars was found in the controls indicating that some larvae in the treatment group may have been consumed after they had died. These findings suggest that intraguild predation between the two species may be common in nature and that it is a facultative process that is not induced by food shortage. The findings further suggest that polymerase chain reaction could be a useful technique in the study of this phenomenon in natural habitats.
Studies were conducted to examine the population genetic structure of Anopheles arabiensis (Patton) in Mwea Rice Irrigation Scheme and surrounding areas in Central Kenya, under different agricultural systems. This study was motivated by observed differences in malaria transmission indices of An. arabiensis within the scheme compared with adjacent nonirrigated areas. Agricultural practices can modify local microclimate and influence the number and diversity of larval habitats and in so doing may occasion subpopulation differentiation. Thirty samples from each of the three study sites were genotyped at eight microsatellite loci. Seven microsatellite loci showed high polymorphism but revealed no genetic differentiation (FST = 0.006, P = 0.312) and high gene flow (Nm = 29–101) among the three populations. Genetic bottleneck analysis showed no indication of excess heterozygosity in any of the populations. There was high frequency of rare alleles, suggesting that An. arabiensis in the study area has a high potential of responding to selective pressures from environmental changes and vector control efforts. These findings imply that An. arabiensis in the study area occurs as a single, continuous panmictic population with great ability to adapt to human-imposed selective pressures.
Microsatellites; An. arabiensis; gene flow; agricultural practices; Kenya
Eotaxin is an important inflammatory chemokine in eosinophil chemotaxis and activation and, thus, is implicated in asthma. Recently, obesity was associated with an increased prevalence of asthma, but the relationship between obesity and eotaxin expression has only been partially understood in obese mice and human studies. Therefore, we studied the expression patterns of eotaxin in 3T3-L1 preadipocytes/adipocytes to determine whether eotaxin levels are influenced by body weight gain and/or reduction in diet-induced obese mice. First, we investigated eotaxin expression during differentiation in 3T3-L1 adipocytes. Then, we treated 3T3-L1 preadipocytes/adipocytes with tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α), eotaxin, interleukin (IL)-4, IL-5, or leptin. To examine the effects of weight loss in high-fat diet induced obese mice, we fed C57BL/6 mice a high-fat diet or a normal diet for 26 weeks. Then, half of the high-fat diet group were fed a normal diet until 30 weeks to reduce weight. Epididymal adipose tissue, visceral adipose tissue, serum, and bronchoalveolar fluid of mice were examined for eotaxin expression. The results showed that eotaxin expression levels increased with adipocyte differentiation and that more eotaxin was expressed when the cells were stimulated with TNF-α, eotaxin, IL-4, IL-5, or leptin. An in vivo study showed that eotaxin levels were reduced in visceral adipose tissues when high-fat diet fed mice underwent weight loss. Taken together, these results indicate a close relationship between eotaxin expression and obesity as well as weight loss, thus, they indirectly show a relation to asthma.
Eotaxin; 3T3-L1 adipocytes; obesity; weight loss; asthma
The aim of this study was to analyze the correlation between thromboembolic complications and antiplatelet drugs before and after neurointervention.
Blood samples and radiographic data of patients who received a neurointervention (coil embolization, stent placement or both) were collected prospectively. Rapid platelet function assay-aspirin (RPFA-ASA) was used to calculate aspirin resistance in aspirin reaction units (ARU). For clopidogrel resistance, a P2Y12 assay was used to analyze the percentage of platelet inhibition. ARU > 550 and platelet inhibition < 40% were defined as aspirin and clopidogrel resistance, respectively.
Both aspirin and clopidogrel oral pills were administered in fifty-three patients before and after neurointerventional procedures. The mean resistance values of all patients were 484 ARU and < 39%. Ten (17.0%) of 53 patients showed resistance to aspirin with an average of 597 ARU, and 33 (62.3%) of 53 patients showed resistance to clopidogrel with an average of < 26%. Ten patients demonstrated resistance to both drugs, 5 of which suffered a thromboembolic complication after neurointervention (mean values : 640 ARU and platelet inhibition < 23%). Diabetic patients and patients with hypercholesterolemia displayed mean aspirin resistances of 513.7 and 501.8 ARU, and mean clopidogrel resistances of < 33.8% and < 40.7%, respectively.
Identifying individuals with poor platelet inhibition using standard regimens is of great clinical importance and may help prevent cerebral ischemic events in the future. Neurointerventional research should focus on ideal doses, timing, choices, safety, and reliable measurements of antiplatelet drug therapy, as well as confirming the clinical relevance of aggregometry in cerebrovascular patients.
Aspirin; Clopidogrel; Resistance; Neurointervention
Tumors of the small bowel are rare, accounting for about 3-6% of all gastrointestinal neoplasms, though they cover more than 90% of the intestinal surface. However, diagnosis and treatment are difficult and present an ongoing challenge for both gastrointestinal surgeons and gastroenterologists. The aim of this study was to investigate the clinical features of small bowel tumors.
Between November 1994 and November 2007, 81 patients underwent treatments for primary tumors in the jejuno-ileal region at the Department of Surgery, Kangnam St. Mary's Hospital, the Catholic University of Korea. A retrospective review of the patients' characteristics and variable tumor factors was performed.
The mean age of the patients was 53.2 years with 48 men and 33 women. The most common symptom was abdominal pain (59.3%), followed by bleeding (22.2%) and an abdominal mass (6.2%). We found that the patients with ileal tumors complained mainly of abdominal pain (72.9%) whereas the patients with jejunal tumors presented with gastrointestinal bleeding (36.4%) (P = 0.048). Seventy-six of the 81 patients (93.8%) had malignant tumors, including 40 (49.4%) gastrointestinal stromal tumors, 26 (32.1%) lymphomas and 5 (6.2%) adenocarcinomas. No postoperative mortalities were observed. The overall 5-year survival rate of the patients with malignant small bowel tumors was 31.8%.
Because the clinical features of a primary tumor of the small bowel are obscure and its diagnosis is difficult, maintaining a high degree of suspicion and recognizing the possibility of a primary small bowel tumor are important.
Small intestine; Gastrointestinal stromal tumors; Lymphoma
In this study, we investigated the potential of combined treatment with temozolomide (TMZ) chemotherapy and tumor antigen-pulsed dendritic cells (DCs) and the underlying immunological factors of TMZ chemoimmunotherapy with an intracranial GL26 glioma animal model. The combined treatment enhanced the tumor-specific immune responses and prolonged the survival more effectively than either single therapy in GL26 tumor-bearing animals. Apoptosis was induced in the tumors of the animals by the treatment with TMZ. Calreticulin (CRT) surface exposure was detected by immunofluorescence staining of TMZ-treated GL26 cells. TMZ chemotherapy increased tumor antigen cross-priming from tumor cells, leading to cross-priming of tumor antigen-specific CD4+ T cells and CD8+ T cells. This chemotherapy appeared to suppress the frequency of CD4+ CD25+ regulatory T cells (Treg). Moreover, this combined therapy resulted in an increase in the tumor infiltration of CD4+ and CD8+ T cells. Collectively, the findings of this study provide evidence that the combination of TMZ chemotherapy and treatment with DC-based vaccines leads to the enhancement of antitumor immunity through increased tumor-specific immune responses via the cross-priming of apoptotic tumor cell death mediated by CRT exposure and, in part, the suppression of Treg. Therefore, CRT exposure, regulatory T cells, and cross-priming by TMZ chemotherapy may be immunological factors related to the enhancement of the antitumor effects of chemoimmunotherapy in an experimental brain tumor model.
Several surgical procedures have been reported for the treatment of chronic subdural hematoma (CSDH). We compared the results of treatments for CSDH obtained from one burr-hole craniostomy with closed system drainage with or without irrigation, two burr-hole craniostomy with closed system drainage with irrigation, and small craniotomy with irrigation and closed-system drainage.
Eighty-seven patients with CSDH underwent surgery at our institution from January 2004 to December 2008. Our patients were classified into three groups according to the operative procedure; group I, one burr-hole craniostomy with closed system drainage with or without irrigation (n = 25), group II, two burr-hole craniostomy with closed system drainage with irrigation (n = 32), and group III, small craniotomy with irrigation and closed-system drainage (n = 30).
Age distribution, male and female ratio, Markwalder's grade on admission and at the time of discharge, size of hematoma before and after surgery, duration of operation, Hounsfield unit of hematoma before and after surgery, duration of hospital treatment, complication rate, and revision rate were categories that we compared between groups. Duration of operation and hospitalization were only two categories which were different. But, when comparing burr hole craniostomy group (group I and group II) with small craniotomy group (group III), duration of post-operative hospital treatment, complication and recurrence rate were statistically lower in small craniotomy group, even though operation time was longer.
Such results indicate that small craniotomy with irrigation and closed-system drainage can be considered as one of the treatment options in patients with CSDH.
Chronic subdural hematoma; Burr hole craniostomy; Small craniotomy
This study was performed to assess the efficacy of GKS in patients with ten or more brain metastases.
From Aug 2002 to Dec 2007, twenty-six patients (13 men and 13 women) with ten or more cerebral metastatic lesions underwent GKS. The mean age was 55 years (32-80). All patients had Karnofsky performance status (KPS) score of 70 or better. According to recursive partitioning analysis (RPA) classification, 3 patients belonged to class I and 23 to class II. The location of primary tumor was lung (21), breast (3) and unknown (2). The mean number of the lesions per patient was 16.6 (10-37). The mean cumulated volume was 10.9 cc (1.0-42.2). The median marginal dose was 15 Gy (9-23). Overall survival and the prognostic factors for the survival were retrospectively analyzed by using Kaplan Meier method and univariate analysis.
Overall median survival from GKS was 34 weeks (8-199). Local control was possible for 79.5% of the lesions and control of all the lesions was possible in at least 14 patients (53.8%) until 6 months after GKS. New lesions appeared in 7 (26.9%) patients during the same period. At the last follow-up, 18 patients died; 6 (33.3%) from systemic causes, 10 (55.6%) from neurological causes, and 2 (11.1%) from unknown causes. Synchronous onset in non-small cell lung cancer (p=0.007), high KPS score (≥80, p=0.029), and controlled primary disease (p=0.020) were favorable prognostic factors in univariate analysis.
In carefully selected patients, GKS may be a treatment option for ten or more brain metastases.
Multiple; Brain metastases; Gamma knife radiosurgery; Prognostic factor
This study is to report our experience of 40 cases of spinal schwannoma.
From 1995 to 2006, medical records were retrospectively reviewed in 40 cases of spinal schwannoma.
We treated 40 spinal schwannomas in 38 (22 male and 16 female) patients. The mean age was 50.2. Four cases were sited in the cervical spine, 11 cases in the thoracic spine, and 25 cases in the lumbar spine. Two patients showed recurrences. Thirty-eight cases were intradural-extramedullary type and 2 cases were extradural. Two cases (5%) including 1 recurred case had no postoperative motor improvement. Ninety-five percents of patients improved on postoperative motor grade.
Spinal schwannoma is mostly benign and extramedullary tumor. There were 2 recurred cases (5%) that had history of previous subtotal removal at first operation and had shown worse prognosis compared with the cases without recurrence. To reduce the recurrence of spinal schannoma, total excision of tumor mass should be done.
Spinal schwannoma; Recurrence; Laminoplasty
To evaluate the transplacental transfer of Theileria sergenti infection in cattle, we used DNA probes to detect T. sergenti in 6 pregnant cows and their calves. All the animals were monitored by parasitologic, serologic, and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assays for a predicted 875-base-pair (bp) DNA product and a 684-bp amplicon detected by nested PCR in the blood and spleens of aborted fetuses. An open reading frame (ORF) starting at nucleotide 170 and terminating at position 1021 was shown to code for a polypeptide of 283 amino acid residues. All 6 dams and 5 calves were positive for T. sergenti in all tests. One calf was positive only with nested PCR. We conclude that transplacental transmission of T. sergenti is a significant problem. The relevance of the data in the programmed introduction of new (especially pregnant) animals into established clean herds needs serious consideration with regard to control of theileriosis and other tickborne diseases.