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1.  Current perspectives on the spread of dengue in India 
Dengue fever (DF) and dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF) are important arthropod-borne viral diseases. Each year, there are ~50 million dengue infections and ~500,000 individuals are hospitalized with DHF, mainly in Southeast Asia. Dengue in India has dramatically expanded over the last few decades, with rapidly changing epidemiology. The first major DHF outbreak in the entire nation occurred in 1996 by dengue virus serotype 2, and after a gap of almost a decade, the country faced yet another DF outbreak in the year 2003 by dengue virus serotype 3. A dramatic increase in the number and frequency of outbreaks followed, and, at present, in most of the states of India, dengue is almost endemic. At present, all the four serotypes are seen in circulation, but the predominant serotype keeps changing. Despite this trend, surveillance, reporting, and diagnosis of dengue remain largely passive in India. More active community-based epidemiological studies with intensive vector control and initiatives for dengue vaccine development should be geared up to control the spread of dengue in India. We review here the factors that may have contributed to the changing epidemiology of dengue in India.
PMCID: PMC4266245  PMID: 25525374
dengue; epidemiology; India; pathogenesis; vaccine
2.  Development of minimally invasive techniques for management of medically-complicated obesity 
World Journal of Gastroenterology : WJG  2014;20(37):13424-13445.
The field of bariatric surgery has been rapidly growing and evolving over the past several decades. During the period that obesity has become a worldwide epidemic, new interventions have been developed to combat this complex disorder. The development of new laparoscopic and minimally invasive treatments for medically-complicated obesity has made it essential that gastrointestinal physicians obtain a thorough understanding of past developments and possible future directions in bariatrics. New laparoscopic advancements provide patients and practitioners with a variety of options that have an improved safety profile and better efficacy without open, invasive surgery. The mechanisms of weight loss after bariatric surgery are complex and may in part be related to altered release of regulatory peptide hormones from the gut. Endoscopic techniques designed to mimic the effects of bariatric surgery and endolumenal interventions performed entirely through the gastrointestinal tract offer potential advantages. Several of these new techniques have demonstrated promising, preliminary results. We outline herein historical and current trends in the development of bariatric surgery and its transition to safer and more minimally invasive procedures designed to induce weight loss.
PMCID: PMC4188895  PMID: 25309074
Obesity; Bariatrics; Bariatric surgery; Weight loss; Endoscopy
4.  Genetic Variability, Character Association, and Path Analysis for Economic Traits in Menthofuran Rich Half-Sib Seed Progeny of Mentha piperita L. 
BioMed Research International  2014;2014:150830.
Menthofuran rich eight half-sib seed progeny of Mentha piperita (MPS-36) were studied for various genetic parameters, namely, coefficient of variation, heritability, genetic advance, correlation, and path of various plant and oil attributes, namely, plant height, L : S ratio, herb yield, β-myrcene, limonene, 1,8-cineole, menthone, menthofuran, neomenthone, pulegone, and menthol. Maximum genotypic coefficient of variation and genetic advance as percentage of mean were recorded for pulegone, followed by menthofuran and 1,8-cineole. The genotypic correlation in general was higher than phenotypic; positive significant correlation was recorded for limonene with 1,8-cineole and menthone, β-myrcene with limonene, and 1,8-cineole and menthofuran with neomenthol. A high direct positive effect on menthofuran was of neomenthol.
PMCID: PMC4055078  PMID: 24963471
5.  State of the Globe: Hepatitis A Virus - Return of a Water Devil 
PMCID: PMC4049040  PMID: 24926164
6.  Hepatitis B Virus Induces Cell Proliferation via HBx-Induced microRNA-21 in Hepatocellular Carcinoma by Targeting Programmed Cell Death Protein4 (PDCD4) and Phosphatase and Tensin Homologue (PTEN) 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(3):e91745.
Hepatitis B viral infection-induced hepatocellular carcinoma is one of the major problems in the developing countries. One of the HBV proteins, HBx, modulates the host cell machinery via several mechanisms. In this study we hypothesized that HBV enhances cell proliferation via HBx-induced microRNA-21 in hepatocellular carcinoma. HBx gene was over-expressed, and miRNA-21 expression and cell proliferation were measured in Huh 7 and Hep G2 cells. miRNA-21 was over-expressed in these cells, cell proliferation and the target proteins were analyzed. To confirm the role of miRNA-21 in HBx-induced proliferation, Hep G cells (a cell line that expresses HBV stably) were used for miRNA-21 inhibition studies. HBx over-expression enhanced proliferation (3.7- and 4.5-fold increase; n = 3; p<0.01) and miRNA-21 expression (24- and 36-fold increase, normalized with 5S rRNA; p<0.001) in Huh 7 and Hep G2 cells respectively. HBx also resulted in the inhibition of miRNA-21 target proteins, PDCD4 and PTEN. miRNA-21 resulted in a significant increase in proliferation (2- and 2.3-fold increase over control cells; p<0.05 in Huh 7 and Hep G2 cells respectively) and decreased target proteins, PDCD4 and PTEN expression. Anti-miR-21 resulted in a significant decrease in proliferation (p<0.05) and increased miRNA-21 target protein expression. We conclude that HBV infection enhances cell proliferation, at least in part, via HBx-induced miRNA-21 expression during hepatocellular carcinoma progression.
PMCID: PMC3954734  PMID: 24633222
7.  Hepatitis C virus: Screening, diagnosis, and interpretation of laboratory assays 
An estimated 3% of the world population is infected with Hepatitis C virus (HCV), a hepatotropic RNA virus, transmitted primarily via the blood route. The major modes of transmission of the virus include injection drug use, unsafe injection practices, blood transfusion etc. HCV causes chronic hepatitis in about 80% of those infected by it. The mainstay in diagnosing infection with HCV is to initially screen high risk groups for antibodies to HCV (anti-HCV). The inclusion of serum to cut-off ratio (S/CO) in recent guidelines is helpful in deciding the supplemental assay to be used to confirm initially reactive screening results. Nucleic acid amplification tests (NAT) are used as confirmatory tools, and also to determine viral load prior to initiating treatment. Quantitative NAT has replaced qualitative assays. Genotyping is an important tool in clinical management to predict the likelihood of response and determine the optimal duration of therapy. The impact of this infection has begun to emerge in India. The problem of professional blood donation despite an existing law against it, and flourishing unsafe injection practices, are potential sources for the spread of hepatitis C in our country. All health care practitioners need to understand how to establish or exclude a diagnosis of HCV infection and to interpret the tests correctly. In the absence of a preventive or therapeutic vaccine, and also of post-exposure prophylaxis against the virus, it is imperative to diagnose infection by HCV so as to prevent hepatic insult and the ensuing complications that follow, including primary hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). This review aims to help blood bank staff regarding options for diagnosis and management of donors positive for HCV.
PMCID: PMC3943138  PMID: 24678168
Blood borne virus; hepatitis C virus diagnosis; nucleic acid test
8.  Automation in Immunohematology 
There have been rapid technological advances in blood banking in South Asian region over the past decade with an increasing emphasis on quality and safety of blood products. The conventional test tube technique has given way to newer techniques such as column agglutination technique, solid phase red cell adherence assay, and erythrocyte-magnetized technique. These new technologies are adaptable to automation and major manufacturers in this field have come up with semi and fully automated equipments for immunohematology tests in the blood bank. Automation improves the objectivity and reproducibility of tests. It reduces human errors in patient identification and transcription errors. Documentation and traceability of tests, reagents and processes and archiving of results is another major advantage of automation. Shifting from manual methods to automation is a major undertaking for any transfusion service to provide quality patient care with lesser turnaround time for their ever increasing workload. This article discusses the various issues involved in the process.
PMCID: PMC3439752  PMID: 22988378
Automation; immunohematology; serology
10.  Viral Infections of the Biliary Tract 
Bacterial infections of the biliary tract are often considered to be an important cause of acute cholangitis. Viral infections of the biliary tract however, are very often mistaken as viral hepatitis. This article highlights various viral causes of common biliary tract infections. Viral cholangitis is both less common and less discussed than viral hepatitis. Hepatotropic viruses (A, B, C, and E) are generally regarded as hepatocellular pathogens, yet cholangitic manifestations are now well described in association with these diseases. Systemic viral diseases also lead to cholangitis in varying proportion to hepatitis. Human immunodeficiency virus is associated with protean hepatic complications, including cholangitis due to several causes. Other systemic viruses, most notably those of the herpes virus family, also cause hepatic disease including cholangitis and possibly ductopenia in both immunocompromised and immunocompetent patients.
PMCID: PMC2702917  PMID: 19568530
Biliary tract; viral infections; review; cholangitis; cholangiopathy; hepatitis; infection; virus
11.  The changing epidemiology of dengue in Delhi, India 
Virology Journal  2006;3:92.
A major DHF outbreak occurred in Delhi in 1996. Following this another outbreak was reported in the year 2003. In the years 2004 and 2005, though no outbreak was reported, a definitely higher number of samples were received in the virology laboratory of A.I.I.M.S. from suspected cases of dengue infection. This study was designed to compare the serological and virological profiles of confirmed dengue cases in the years 2003, 2004 and 2005.
Out of 1820 serum samples received from suspected cases in all three years, 811 (44.56%) were confirmed as dengue infection serologically. Out of these confirmed dengue cases maximum cases, in all three years, were seen in the age group 21–30 years. There was an increase in the number of samples received in the post monsoon period (September to November) with a peak in the second and third week of October. More samples were received from DHF cases in the year 2005 than 2004 and 2003. All four dengue serotypes were seen co-circulating in the year 2003, followed by complete predominance of dengue serotype 3 in 2005.
Epidemiology of dengue is changing rapidly in Delhi. Dengue infections are seen every year thus making it an endemic disease. After co-circulation of all serotypes in 2003, now dengue serotype 3 is emerging as the predominant serotype.
PMCID: PMC1636631  PMID: 17083743
12.  Cocirculation of Dengue Serotypes, Delhi, India, 2003 
Emerging Infectious Diseases  2006;12(2):352-353.
PMCID: PMC3373095  PMID: 17080580
Dengue virus; epidemiology; outbreaks; India; letter
13.  The C Terminus of the Saccharomyces cerevisiae α-Factor Receptor Contributes to the Formation of Preactivation Complexes with Its Cognate G Protein 
Molecular and Cellular Biology  2000;20(14):5321-5329.
Binding of the α-factor pheromone to its G-protein-coupled receptor (encoded by STE2) activates the mating pathway in MATa yeast cells. To investigate whether specific interactions between the receptor and the G protein occur prior to ligand binding, we analyzed dominant-negative mutant receptors that compete with wild-type receptors for G proteins, and we analyzed the ability of receptors to suppress the constitutive signaling activity of mutant Gα subunits in an α-factor-independent manner. Although the amino acid substitution L236H in the third intracellular loop of the receptor impairs G-protein activation, this substitution had no influence on the ability of the dominant-negative receptors to sequester G proteins or on the ability of receptors to suppress the GPA1-A345T mutant Gα subunit. In contrast, removal of the cytoplasmic C-terminal domain of the receptor eliminated both of these activities even though the C-terminal domain is unnecessary for G-protein activation. Moreover, the α-factor-independent signaling activity of ste2-P258L mutant receptors was inhibited by the coexpression of wild-type receptors but not by coexpression of truncated receptors lacking the C-terminal domain. Deletion analysis suggested that the distal half of the C-terminal domain is critical for sequestration of G proteins. The C-terminal domain was also found to influence the affinity of the receptor for α-factor in cells lacking G proteins. These results suggest that the C-terminal cytoplasmic domain of the α-factor receptor, in addition to its role in receptor downregulation, promotes the formation of receptor–G-protein preactivation complexes.
PMCID: PMC85981  PMID: 10866688

Results 1-13 (13)