The cell-mediated immunity (CMI)-based in vitro gamma interferon release assay (IGRA) of Mycobacterium leprae-specific antigens has potential as a promising diagnostic means to detect those individuals in the early stages of M. leprae infection. Diagnosis of leprosy is a major obstacle toward ultimate disease control and has been compromised in the past by the lack of specific markers. Comparative bioinformatic analysis among mycobacterial genomes identified potential M. leprae-specific proteins called “hypothetical unknowns.” Due to massive gene decay and the prevalence of pseudogenes, it is unclear whether any of these proteins are expressed or are immunologically relevant. In this study, we performed cDNA-based quantitative real-time PCR to investigate the expression status of 131 putative open reading frames (ORFs) encoding hypothetical unknowns. Twenty-six of the M. leprae-specific antigen candidates showed significant levels of gene expression compared to that of ESAT-6 (ML0049), which is an important T cell antigen of low abundance in M. leprae. Fifteen of 26 selected antigen candidates were expressed and purified in Escherichia coli. The seroreactivity to these proteins of pooled sera from lepromatous leprosy patients and cavitary tuberculosis patients revealed that 9 of 15 recombinant hypothetical unknowns elicited M. leprae-specific immune responses. These nine proteins may be good diagnostic reagents to improve both the sensitivity and specificity of detection of individuals with asymptomatic leprosy.
Cotton, one of the world’s leading crops, is important to the world’s textile and energy industries, and is a model species for studies of plant polyploidization, cellulose biosynthesis and cell wall biogenesis. Here, we report the construction of a plant-transformation-competent binary bacterial artificial chromosome (BIBAC) library and comparative genome sequence analysis of polyploid Upland cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) with one of its diploid putative progenitor species, G. raimondii Ulbr.
We constructed the cotton BIBAC library in a vector competent for high-molecular-weight DNA transformation in different plant species through either Agrobacterium or particle bombardment. The library contains 76,800 clones with an average insert size of 135 kb, providing an approximate 99% probability of obtaining at least one positive clone from the library using a single-copy probe. The quality and utility of the library were verified by identifying BIBACs containing genes important for fiber development, fiber cellulose biosynthesis, seed fatty acid metabolism, cotton-nematode interaction, and bacterial blight resistance. In order to gain an insight into the Upland cotton genome and its relationship with G. raimondii, we sequenced nearly 10,000 BIBAC ends (BESs) randomly selected from the library, generating approximately one BES for every 250 kb along the Upland cotton genome. The retroelement Gypsy/DIRS1 family predominates in the Upland cotton genome, accounting for over 77% of all transposable elements. From the BESs, we identified 1,269 simple sequence repeats (SSRs), of which 1,006 were new, thus providing additional markers for cotton genome research. Surprisingly, comparative sequence analysis showed that Upland cotton is much more diverged from G. raimondii at the genomic sequence level than expected. There seems to be no significant difference between the relationships of the Upland cotton D- and A-subgenomes with the G. raimondii genome, even though G. raimondii contains a D genome (D5).
The library represents the first BIBAC library in cotton and related species, thus providing tools useful for integrative physical mapping, large-scale genome sequencing and large-scale functional analysis of the Upland cotton genome. Comparative sequence analysis provides insights into the Upland cotton genome, and a possible mechanism underlying the divergence and evolution of polyploid Upland cotton from its diploid putative progenitor species, G. raimondii.
BIBAC library; Gossypium hirsutum; Gossypium raimondii; BIBAC end sequence (BES); Genome evolution; SSR; Polyploidization and evolution
Acquired hemophilia A (AHA) is a rare coagulopathy caused by autoantibodies to coagulation factor VIII (FVIII). Most patients with AHA have been previously healthy; however, a variety of morbidities have been associated with the condition including pregnancy. A 40-yr-old woman visited our institution with extensive hematoma on the right hip area. Her medical history revealed no personal or familial history of bleeding diathesis. Her coagulation tests showed markedly prolonged aPTT (117 sec), markedly decreased level of FVIII activity (0.4%) and high-titer FVIII inhibitor (77 BU). Collectively, she was diagnosed as having postpartum AHA and was treated with bypassing agents and corticosteroids. Her aPTT was normalized on the 174th postpartum day and FVIII inhibitor showed negative conversion on the 224th postpartum day. This is the first case of postpartum AHA with high-titer FVIII inhibitor in Korea. Timely diagnosis and management can reduce morbidity and mortality of this potentially life-threatening condition.
Acquired hemophilia A; Postpartum; Factor VIII inhibitor; Korea
Fibrin-related markers (FRM) such as fibrin monomer (FM) and D-dimer (DD) are considered useful biological markers for the diagnosis of disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC). However, no studies on the diagnostic performance of different FRMs have been published in Korea. The aim of this study was to evaluate the diagnostic performance of FM for DIC in comparison with DD.
The reference limit of FM was determined based on plasma sample data obtained from 210 control individuals. To evaluate diagnostic performance, FM data from the plasma samples of 139 patients with DIC-associated diseases were obtained for DIC scoring. FM was measured by immunoturbidimetry using STA-LIATEST FM (Diagnostica Stago, France). Patients were classified according to the DIC score as non-DIC, non-overt DIC, or overt DIC. ROC curve analyses were performed.
The reference limit in the control individuals was determined to be 7.80 µg/mL. Patients with DIC-associated diseases were categorized as non-DIC (N=43), non-overt DIC (N=80), and overt DIC (N=16). ROC curve analyses showed that the diagnostic performance of FM was comparable to DD in both non-overt DIC and overt DIC (P=0.596 and 0.553, respectively). In addition, FM had higher sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, and negative predictive value than DD for differentiating overt DIC from non-DIC.
This study demonstrated that the diagnostic performance of FM for DIC was comparable to DD. FM might be more sensitive and more specific than DD in the diagnosis of overt DIC, but not non-overt DIC.
Area under the curve (AUC); Disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC); D-dimer (DD); Fibrin monomer (FM); Fibrin-related marker (FRM); ROC
Sihler's staining allows visualization of the nerve distribution within soft tissues without extensive dissection and does not require slide preparation, unlike traditional approaches. This technique can be applied to the mucosa, muscle, and organs that contain myelinated nerve fibers. In particular, Sihler's technique may be considered the best tool for observing nerve distribution within skeletal muscles. The intramuscular distribution pattern of nerves is difficult to observe through manual manipulation due to the gradual tapering of nerves toward the terminal end of muscles, so it should be accompanied by histological studies to establish the finer branches therein. This method provides useful information not only for anatomists but also for physiologists and clinicians. Advanced knowledge of the nerve distribution patterns will be useful for developing guidelines for clinicians who perform operations such as muscle resection, tendon transplantation, and botulinum toxin injection. Furthermore, it is a useful technique to develop neurosurgical techniques and perform electrophysiological experiments. In this review, Sihler's staining technique is described in detail, covering its history, staining protocol, advantages, disadvantages, and possible applications. The application of this technique for determining the arterial distribution pattern is also described additionally in this study.
Review; Sihler's staining; Whole mount nerve staining; Nerve; Artery
Subcortical vascular dementia (SVaD), one of common causes of dementia, has concomitant Alzheimer's disease (AD) pathology in over 30%, termed “mixed dementia”. Identifying mixed dementia from SVaD is important because potential amyloid-targeted therapies may be effective for treatment in mixed dementia. The purpose of this study was to discriminate mixed dementia from pure SVaD using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). We measured brain amyloid deposition using the 11C-Pittsburgh compound B positron emission tomography (PiB-PET) in 68 patients with SVaD. A PiB retention ratio greater than 1.5 was considered PiB(+). Hippocampal and amygdalar shape were used in the incremental learning method to discriminate mixed dementia from pure SVaD because these structures are known to be prominently involved by AD pathologies. Among 68 patients, 23 (33.8%) patients were positive for PiB binding. With use of hippocampal shape analysis alone, PiB(+) SVaD could be discriminated from PiB(-) SVaD with 77.9% accuracy (95.7% sensitivity and 68.9% specificity). With use of amygdalar shape, the discrimination accuracy was 75.0% (87.0% sensitivity and 68.9% specificity). When hippocampal and amygdalar shape were analyzed together, accuracy increased to 82.4% (95.7% sensitivity and 75.6% specificity). An incremental learning method using hippocampal and amygdalar shape distinguishes mixed dementia from pure SVaD. Furthermore, our results suggest that amyloid pathology and vascular pathology have different effects on the shape of the hippocampus and amygdala.
The F8 and F9 genes encode for coagulation factor VIII (FVIII) and FIX, respectively, and mutations in these genes are the genetic basis of hemophilia A/B. To determine whether a sequence variation in F8/F9 is a disease-causing mutation, frequency data from a control population is needed. This study aimed to obtain data on sequence variation in F8/F9 in a set of functionally validated control chromosomes of Korean descent.
We re-sequenced F8 and F9 from DNA samples of 100 Korean male control individuals with normal PT, aPTT, and FVIII activity. PCR and direct sequencing analyses were performed using primer pairs to cover all coding regions and the flanking intronic sequences.
Thirteen individuals (13%) were hemizygous for sequence variations in the coding region of F8. Six (6%) had c.3780C>G (p.Asp1260Glu), five (5%) had c.3864A>C (p.Ser1288=). One each individual (1%) had c.4794G>T (p.Glu1598Asp) and c.5069 A>G (p.Glu1690Gly). Asp1260Glu and Ser1288= were known SNPs (rs1800291 and rs1800292, respectively). Glu1598Asp was assigned as a missense mutation in public databases (HGMD and HAMSTeRS), and Glu1690Gly was a novel variation. Based on the normal FVIII activities in control individuals carrying these variations (109% and 148%, respectively), they were considered to be rare SNPs. No variation was observed in F9 of control individuals.
A significant proportion of control individuals carried sequence variations in F8, but not in F9. These results can be used as a reference dataset for molecular diagnosis of hemophilia A and B, particularly in Korea.
Hemophilia; F8; F9; Sequence variation; Control population; Korea
The number of patients diagnosed with hereditary hemolytic anemia (HHA) has increased since the advent of novel diagnostic techniques that accurately identify this disorder. Here, we report data from a survey on the prevalence and characteristics of patients diagnosed with HHA in Korea from 2007 to 2011.
Information on patients diagnosed with HHA in Korea and their clinical and laboratory results were collected using a survey questionnaire. Globin gene and red blood cell (RBC) enzyme analyses were performed. In addition, we analyzed data collected by pediatricians.
In total, 195 cases of HHA were identified. Etiologies identified for HHA were RBC membranopathies, hemoglobinopathies, and RBC enzymopathies, which accounted for 127 (64%), 39 (19.9%), and 26 (13.3%) cases, respectively. Of the 39 patients with hemoglobinopathies, 26 were confirmed by globin gene analysis, including 20 patients with β-thalassemia minor, 5 patients with α-thalassemia minor, and 1 patient with unstable hemoglobin disease.
The number of patients diagnosed with hemoglobinopathies and RBC enzymopathies has increased considerably since the previous survey on HHA in Korea, dated from 1997 to 2006. This is likely the result of improved diagnostic techniques. Nevertheless, there is still a need for more sensitive diagnostic tests utilizing flow cytometry and for better standardization of test results to improve the accuracy of diagnosis of RBC membranopathies in Korea. Additionally, more accurate assays for the identification of RBC enzymopathies are warranted.
Congenital hemolytic anemia; Hereditary spherocytosis; Thalassemia; Congenital nonspherocytic anemia
Chronic granulomatous disease (CGD) is a rare genetic disease, which is caused by defects in the NADPH oxidase complex (gp91phox, p22phox, p40phox, p47phox, and p67phox) of phagocytes. This defect results in impaired production of superoxide anions and other reactive oxygen species (ROS), which are necessary for killing bacterial and fungal microorganisms and leads to recurrent, life-threatening bacterial and fungal infections and granulomatous inflammation. The dihydrorhodamine (DHR) flow cytometry assay is a useful diagnostic tool for CGD that can detect absent or reduced NADPH oxidase activity in stimulated phagocytes. We report a patient with X-linked CGD carrying a novel mutation of the CYBB gene whose chimerism status following hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) has been rapidly determined using the DHR assay. The level of DHR activity correlates well with short tandem repeat PCR analysis. Considering the advantages of this simple, rapid, and cost-effective procedure, serial measurement of DHR assay would facilitate the rapid determination of a patient's engraftment status, as a supplementary monitoring tool of chimerism status following HSCT.
Chronic granulomatous disease; Dihydrorhodamine assay; Chimerism
Long intergenic non-coding RNAs (lincRNAs) have historically been ignored in cancer biology. However, thousands of lincRNAs have been identified in mammals using recently developed genomic tools, including microarray and high-throughput RNA sequencing (RNA-seq). Several of the lincRNAs identified have been well characterized for their functions in carcinogenesis. Here we performed RNA-seq experiments comparing gastric cancer with normal tissues to find differentially expressed transcripts in intergenic regions. By analyzing our own RNA-seq and public microarray data, we identified 31 transcripts, including a known expressed sequence tag, BM742401. BM742401 was downregulated in cancer, and its downregulation was associated with poor survival in gastric cancer patients. Ectopic overexpression of BM742401 inhibited metastasis-related phenotypes and decreased the concentration of extracellular MMP9. These results suggest that BM742401 is a potential lincRNA marker and therapeutic target.
gastric cancer; high-throughput RNA sequencing; long intergenic non-coding RNA; non-coding RNA; RNA-seq
Cotton fiber length is very important to the quality of textiles. Understanding the genetics and physiology of cotton fiber elongation can provide valuable tools to the cotton industry by targeting genes or other molecules responsible for fiber elongation. Ligon Lintless-1 (Li1) is a monogenic mutant in Upland cotton (Gossypium hirsutum) which exhibits an early cessation of fiber elongation resulting in very short fibers (< 6 mm) at maturity. This presents an excellent model system for studying the underlying molecular and cellular processes involved with cotton fiber elongation. Previous reports have characterized Li1 at early cell wall elongation and during later secondary cell wall synthesis, however there has been very limited analysis of the transition period between these developmental time points.
Physical and morphological measurements of the Li1 mutant fibers were conducted, including measurement of the cellulose content during development. Affymetrix microarrays were used to analyze transcript profiles at the critical developmental time points of 3 days post anthesis (DPA), the late elongation stage of 12 DPA and the early secondary cell wall synthesis stage of 16 DPA. The results indicated severe disruption to key hormonal and other pathways related to fiber development, especially pertaining to the transition stage from elongation to secondary cell wall synthesis. Gene Ontology enrichment analysis identified several key pathways at the transition stage that exhibited altered regulation. Genes involved in ethylene biosynthesis and primary cell wall rearrangement were affected, and a primary cell wall-related cellulose synthase was transcriptionally repressed. Linkage mapping using a population of 2,553 F2 individuals identified SSR markers associated with the Li1 genetic locus on chromosome 22. Linkage mapping in combination with utilizing the diploid G. raimondii genome sequences permitted additional analysis of the region containing the Li1 gene.
The early termination of fiber elongation in the Li1 mutant is likely controlled by an early upstream regulatory factor resulting in the altered regulation of hundreds of downstream genes. Several elongation-related genes that exhibited altered expression profiles in the Li1 mutant were identified. Molecular markers closely associated with the Li1 locus were developed. Results presented here will lay the foundation for further investigation of the genetic and molecular mechanisms of fiber elongation.
Cotton; Ligon Lintless-1; Microarray; Cotton fiber elongation; Microsatellite markers
The incidence of pulmonary embolism (PE) rises markedly with age, and only a few cases have been reported in younger adults. Thrombophilia has been reported as one of the predisposing factors for PE in younger adults. Here we report an extraordinary case of PE complicated with dysplasminogenemia, a rare genetic disorder resulting in hypercoagulability, in a young male. An 18-yr-old male visited an emergency room in the United States complaining chest discomfort. He was diagnosed as PE with deep vein thrombosis without apparent risk factors. Anticoagulation therapy with warfarin had been initiated and discontinued after 6 months of treatment. After returning to Korea he was tested for thrombophilia which revealed decreased activity of plasminogen and subsequent analysis of PLG gene showed heterozygous Ala620Thr mutation. He was diagnosed with PE complicated with dysplasminogenemia. Life-long anticoagulation therapy was initiated. He is currently under follow-up without clinical events for 2 yr.
Deficiency; Diagnosis; Plasminogen; Pulmonary Embolism; Venous Thromboembolism
Hearing loss (HL) is one of the most frequent clinical manifestations of patients who suffer with multi-systemic genetic disorders. HL in association with other physical stigmata is referred to as a syndromic form of HL. LEOPARD syndrome (LS) is one of the disorders with syndromic HL and it is caused by a mutation in the PTPN11 or RAF1 gene. In general, 5 year old children who undergo cochlear implantation usually show a marked change in behavior regarding sound detection within the first 6 months of implant use, but word identification may not be exhibited for at least another 6-12 months of implant use. We herein report on a 5-year-old girl with LS. Her clinical manifestations including bilateral sensorineural HL, which indicated the diagnosis of LS. We confirmed the diagnosis by identifying a disease-causing mutation in the PTPN11 gene, which was a heterozygous missense mutation Ala461Thr (c.1381G>A). She underwent cochlear implantation (CI) without complications and she is currently on regular follow-up at postoperative 1 year. This is the first reported case of CI in a patient with LS in the medical literature.
LEOPARD syndrome; Mutation; Cochlear implantation
Leprosy is not eradicable with currently available diagnostics or interventions as evidenced by its stable incidence. Early diagnosis of Mycobacterium leprae infection should therefore be emphasized in leprosy-research. It remains challenging to develop tests based on immunological biomarkers that distinguish individuals controlling bacterial replication from those developing disease.
To identify biomarkers for field-applicable diagnostics, we determined cytokines/chemokines induced by M. leprae proteins in blood of leprosy patients and controls (EC) from high leprosy-prevalence areas (Bangladesh, Brazil, Ethiopia) and from South Korea where leprosy is not endemic anymore.
M. leprae- sonicate induced IFN-γ was similar for all groups, excluding M. leprae/IFN-γ as a diagnostic read-out. By contrast, ML2478 and ML0840 induced high IFN-γ concentrations in Bangladeshi EC, which were completely absent for South Korean controls. Importantly, ML2478/IFN-γ could indicate distinct degrees of M. leprae exposure, and thereby the risk of infection and transmission, in different parts of Brazilian and Ethiopian cities.
Notwithstanding these discriminatory responses, M. leprae proteins did not distinguish patients from EC in one leprosy endemic area based on IFN-γ. Analyses of additional cytokines/chemokines showed that M. leprae and ML2478 induced significantly higher concentrations of MCP-1, MIP-1β and IL-1β in patients compared to EC, whereas IP-10, like IFN-γ, differed between EC from areas with dissimilar leprosy prevalence.
This study identifies M. leprae-unique antigens, particularly ML2478, as biomarker tools to measure M. leprae exposure using IFN-γ or IP-10, and also shows that MCP-1, MIP-1β and IL-1β can potentially distinguish pathogenic immune responses from those induced during asymptomatic exposure to M. leprae.
Mycobacterium leprae (M. leprae); biomarkers; leprosy; multiplex analysis
Phagocytosis and autophagy are two important and related arms of the host's first-line defense against microbial invasion. Rubicon is a RUN domain containing cysteine-rich protein that functions as part of a Beclin-1-Vps34-containing autophagy complex. We report that Rubicon is also an essential, positive regulator of the NADPH oxidase complex. Upon microbial infection or Toll-like-receptor 2 (TLR2) activation, Rubicon interacts with the p22phox subunit of the NADPH oxidase complex, facilitating its phagosomal trafficking to induce a burst of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and inflammatory cytokines. Consequently, ectopic expression or depletion of Rubicon profoundly affected ROS, inflammatory cytokine production, and subsequent antimicrobial activity. Rubicon's actions in autophagy and in the NADPH oxidase complex are functionally and genetically separable, indicating that Rubicon functions in two ancient innate immune machineries, autophagy and phagocytosis, depending on the environmental stimulus. Rubicon may thus be pivotal to generating an optimal intracellular immune response against microbial infection.
Background and Purpose
Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) has potential as a noninvasive neuromodulation treatment method for various neuropsychiatric disorders, and repeated sessions of rTMS are more likely to enhance the therapeutic efficacy. This study investigated neurophysiologic and spatiodynamic changes induced by repeated 1-Hz rTMS of the temporal cortex using transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) indices and fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (FDG-PET).
Twenty-seven healthy subjects underwent daily 1-Hz active or sham rTMS of the right temporal cortex for 5 consecutive days. TMS indices of motor cortical excitability were measured in both hemispheres daily before and after each rTMS session, and 2 weeks after the last stimulation. FDG-PET was performed at baseline and after the 5 days of rTMS sessions.
All subjects tolerated all of the sessions well, with only three of them (11.1%) reporting mild transient side effects (i.e., headache, tinnitus, or local irritation). One-Hz rTMS decreased motor evoked potential amplitudes and delayed cortical silent periods in the stimulated hemisphere. Statistical parametric mapping of FDG-PET data revealed a focal reduction of glucose metabolism in the stimulated temporal area and an increase in the bilateral precentral, ipsilateral superior and middle frontal, prefrontal and cingulate gyri.
Repeated rTMS sessions for 5 consecutive days were tolerated in all subjects, with only occasional minor side effects. Focal 1-Hz rTMS of the temporal cortex induces cortico-cortical modulation with widespread functional changes in brain neural networks via long-range neural connections.
repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS); cortical excitability; fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (FDG-PET); cortico-cortical modulation
Mycobacterium bovis bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) is the only vaccine available against tuberculosis, and the strains used worldwide represent a family of daughter strains with distinct genotypic characteristics. Here, we report the complete genome sequence of M. bovis BCG Korea, the strain that will be actually used in Korea for vaccine production.
The aim of this study is to observe glycemic changes after emphasizing the importance of lifestyle modification in patients with mild or moderately uncontrolled type 2 diabetes.
Materials and Methods
We examined 51 type 2 diabetic patients with 7.0-9.0% hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) who preferred to change their lifestyle rather than followed the recommendation of medication change. At the enrollment, the study subjects completed questionnaires about diet and exercise. After 3 months, HbA1c levels were determined and questionnaires on the change of lifestyle were accomplished. We divided the study subjects into 3 groups: improved (more than 0.3% decrease of HbA1c), aggravated (more than 0.3% increase of HbA1c) and not changed (-0.3%
Among the total 51 subjects, 18 patients (35.3%) showed the decreased levels of HbA1c after 3 months with mean change of -0.74±0.27%, and HbA1c values of 11 patients (21.5%) were less than 7%. In addition, the HbA1c level was significantly reduced in patients who reportedly followed the lifestyle modification such as diet and exercise for 3 months, compared with the one obtained from patients who refused this lifestyle change (p=0.002).
In this study, 35.3% of the patients with mild or moderately uncontrolled type 2 diabetes showed the significant improvement of HbA1c levels after 3 months by simply regulating their daily diet and exercise without change of medication. This suggests that the lifestyle modification is significantly associated with the improvement of glucose control.
Diabetes mellitus; glycemic control; lifestyle; modification
The aim of this study was to investigate antifactor Xa (aFXa) levels after once daily dose of 40 mg of enoxaparin and to evaluate factors influencing aFXa levels among Korean intensive care unit (ICU) patients. This prospective observational study was conducted between August and December 2011 in medical ICUs at Samsung Medical Center. AFXa levels between 0.1 and 0.3 U/mL were considered to be effective for antithrombotic activity. Fifty-five patients were included. The median aFXa levels were 0.22 (IQR 0.17-0.26) at 4 hr, 0.06 (IQR 0.02-0.1) at 12 hr, and 0 U/mL (IQR 0-0.03) at 24 hr. The numbers of patients showing effective antithrombotic aFXa levels were 48 (87.3%), 18 (32.7%), and 0 (0%) at 4, 12 and 24 hr, respectively. At 12 hr, higher sequential organ failure assessment (SOFA) scores and hyperbilirubinemia were significantly associated with low aFXa levels (OR, 0.58; 95% CI, 0.36-0.93; P = 0.02 and 0.06; 0.003-0.87; 0.04, respectively). Once daily dose of 40 mg of enoxaparin is inadequate for maintaining effective antithrombotic aFXa levels, and the inadequacy is more salient for patients with high SOFA scores and hyperbilirubinemia.
Asia; Enoxaparin; Factor Xa; Intensive Care Units; Venous Thrombosis
Usher syndrome type II (USH2) is the most common form of Usher syndrome, characterized by moderate to severe hearing impairment and progressive visual loss due to retinitis pigmentosa. It has been shown that mutations in the USH2A gene are responsible for USH2. The authors herein describe a 34-year-old Korean woman with the typical clinical manifestation of USH2; she had bilateral hearing disturbance and progressive visual deterioration, without vestibular dysfunction. Molecular genetic study of the USH2A gene revealed a novel frameshift mutation (c.2310delA; Glu771LysfsX17). She was heterozygous for this mutation, and no other mutation was found in USH2A, suggesting the possibility of an intronic or large genomic rearrangement mutation. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of a genetically confirmed case of USH2 in Korea. More investigations are needed to delineate genotype-phenotype correlations and ethnicity-specific genetic background of Usher syndrome.
Usher syndrome type II; USH2A; Mutation; Frameshift; Korea
Notified tuberculosis (TB) cases in Korea have not decreased over the last decade (2001-2010).
To clarify the reasons, we analyzed an annual report on notified tuberculosis patients and age-specific population drift in Korea.
Compared to the age-specific notified TB cases between 2001 and 2010, distinctive features in notified TB cases and new cases increased markedly in people aged 45-54 years and in patients over 65 years old, whereas those between 15-34 years in 2010 decreased drastically. In particular, notified TB individuals over 65 years old occupied 29.6% of the cases in 2010, which was 1.5 times higher than that in 2001. The main reason not to decrease in notified TB patients for the last decade (2001-2010) was due to the increasing elderly population as well as the aging of baby boomers, which have a higher risk of TB development.
Korea needs to pay attention to the older population in order to successfully decrease the burden of TB in the future.
Tuberculosis; Population Dynamics; Aging
Ginseng is one of the most widely used herbal medicines in human. Central nervous system (CNS) diseases are most widely investigated diseases among all others in respect to the ginseng’s therapeutic effects. These include Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, cerebral ischemia, depression, and many other neurological disorders including neurodevelopmental disorders. Not only the various types of diseases but also the diverse array of target pathways or molecules ginseng exerts its effect on. These range, for example, from neuroprotection to the regulation of synaptic plasticity and from regulation of neuroinflammatory processes to the regulation of neurotransmitter release, too many to mention. In general, ginseng and even a single compound of ginsenoside produce its effects on multiple sites of action, which make it an ideal candidate to develop multi-target drugs. This is most important in CNS diseases where multiple of etiological and pathological targets working together to regulate the final pathophysiology of diseases. In this review, we tried to provide comprehensive information on the pharmacological and therapeutic effects of ginseng and ginsenosides on neurodegenerative and other neurological diseases. Side by side comparison of the therapeutic effects in various neurological disorders may widen our understanding of the therapeutic potential of ginseng in CNS diseases and the possibility to develop not only symptomatic drugs but also disease modifying reagents based on ginseng.
Panax ginseng; Alzheimer’s disease; Parkinson’s disease; Ischemia; Neurodevelopmental disorders
Whether addition of cilostazol is superior to increasing dose of clopidogrel in patients with hyporesponsiveness to chronic clopidogrel therapy is unknown.
Materials and Methods
We studied 73 patients with hyporesponsiveness to clopidogrel on standard dual antiplatelet therapy for more than 2 weeks. Clopidogrel hyporesponsiveness was defined as percent inhibition of P2Y12 reaction units (PRU) <30% on VerifyNow P2Y12 assay. Patients were randomly assigned to increased dose of clopidogrel (aspirin 100 mg+clopidogrel 150 mg daily: group A, n=38) or to receiving additional cilostazol (aspirin 100 mg+clopidogrel 75 mg+cilostazol 100 mg bid daily: group B, n=35).
Baseline percent inhibition of PRU and PRU was similar between 2 groups (13.0±10.2% versus 11.8±9.7%, p=0.61, and 286.3±54.7 versus 295.7±53.7, p=0.44, respectively). At follow-up, percent inhibition of PRU was higher and PRU was lower significantly in group B than in group A (38.5±17.9% versus 28.3±16.6%, p=0.02, and 207.3±68.2 versus 241.3±76.7, p=0.050, respectively). Among those still showing hyporesponsiveness to clopidogrel at follow-up (21 patients in group A, 10 patients in group B), 12 patients completed further crossover study. Compared to the baseline, magnitude of change in percent inhibition of PRU and PRU showed an improved tendency after the crossover (from 2.7±8.7% to 15.8±18.4%, p=0.08, and from -18.6±58.0 to -61.9±84.3, p=0.08).
Adjunctive cilostazol improved clopidogrel responsiveness better than the higher maintenance dose of clopidogrel in hyporesponsive patients with chronic clopidogrel therapy.
Clopidogrel; cilostazol; platelets
Gelsolin and matrix metalloproteinase 12 (MMP12) expression has been reported in Langerhans cell histiocytosis (LCH), but the clinical significance of this expression is unknown. We investigated the associations of these proteins with clinical manifestations in patients diagnosed with LCH.
We performed a retrospective analysis of clinical data from patients diagnosed with LCH and followed up between 1998 and 2008. Available formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded specimens were used for gelsolin and MMP12 immunohistochemical staining. We analyzed the expression levels of these proteins and their associations with LCH clinical features.
Specimens from 36 patients (20 males, 16 females) with a diagnosis of LCH based on CD1a positivity with clinical manifestations were available for immunohistochemical staining. Median patient age was 62 months (range, 5 to 207). The expression of gelsolin varied; it was high in 17 patients (47.2%), low in 11 patients (30.6%), and absent in 8 patients (22.2%). The high gelsolin expression group had a higher tendency for multi-organ and risk organ involvement, although the trend was not statistically significant. MMP12 was detected only in 7 patients (19.4%) who showed multi-system involvement (P=0.018) and lower event-free survival (P=0.002) in comparison to patients with negative MMP12 staining.
Gelsolin and MMP12 expression may be associated with the clinical course of LCH, and MMP12 expression may be particularly associated with severe LCH. Further studies of larger populations are needed to define the precise role and significance of gelsolin and MMP12 in the pathogenesis of LCH.
Histiocytosis; Langerhans cells; Immunohistochemistry; Gelsolin; Matrix Metalloproteinase 12
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