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1.  Validity of a Self-administered Version of the Brief Index of Lupus Damage in a Predominantly African American Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Cohort 
Arthritis care & research  2014;66(6):888-896.
To assess the reliability, criterion and construct validity of the self-administered Brief Index of Lupus Damage (SA-BILD), a patient-reported measure of organ damage in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE).
The validity of the SA-BILD was assessed using data from the Georgians Organized Against Lupus (GOAL) survey. GOAL is longitudinal cohort of SLE patients predominantly derived from the Georgia Lupus Registry, a population-based registry established in Atlanta, Georgia, United States (US). Seven hundred eleven participants with documented SLE completed the SA-BILD. To test reliability, the SA-BILD was re-administered to 32 patients. Criterion validity was examined in 150 respondents for whom the SLICC/ACR Damage Index (SDI) was also completed. Construct validity was assessed among 711 GOAL participants dividing the SA-BILD scores into quartiles and examining the association with demographics, health status and health care utilization.
The test-retest correlation score was 0.93 (p<0.0001). The item-by-item agreement with the SDI was over 80% for most SA-BILD items. The Spearman rank correlation for SDI and SA-BILD was moderately high (r=0.59, p<0.0001). SA-BILD scores showed significant associations in the expected directions with age, disease duration, disease activity, overall health, comorbidity index, and physician visits.
The SA-BILD is reliable and has very good or good criterion validity compared to the SDI when tested in a predominantly African American cohort of US SLE patients. Associations of SA-BILD scores with sociodemographics and health status are consistent with previous studies. These findings support the use of SA-BILD as a valid measure of patient-reported damage in SLE.
PMCID: PMC4025986  PMID: 24249662
Systemic Lupus Erythematosus; disease outcomes; patient-reported damage; instrument validation
3.  Fabrication and characterization of graphene hydrogel via hydrothermal approach as a scaffold for preliminary study of cell growth 
Three-dimensional assembly of graphene hydrogel is rapidly attracting the interest of researchers because of its wide range of applications in energy storage, electronics, electrochemistry, and waste water treatment. Information on the use of graphene hydrogel for biological purposes is lacking, so we conducted a preliminary study to determine the suitability of graphene hydrogel as a substrate for cell growth, which could potentially be used as building blocks for biomolecules and tissue engineering applications.
A three-dimensional structure of graphene hydrogel was prepared via a simple hydrothermal method using two-dimensional large-area graphene oxide nanosheets as a precursor.
The concentration and lateral size of the graphene oxide nanosheets influenced the structure of the hydrogel. With larger-area graphene oxide nanosheets, the graphene hydrogel could be formed at a lower concentration. X-ray diffraction patterns revealed that the oxide functional groups on the graphene oxide nanosheets were reduced after hydrothermal treatment. The three-dimensional graphene hydrogel matrix was used as a scaffold for proliferation of a MG63 cell line.
Guided filopodia protrusions of MG63 on the hydrogel were observed on the third day of cell culture, demonstrating compatibility of the graphene hydrogel structure for bioapplications.
PMCID: PMC3173046  PMID: 21931479
cell culture; graphene; hydrogel

Results 1-3 (3)