Background: This study hypothesized that combined serum-deprived (Sd) and healthy (He) adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cell (ADMSC) therapy is superior to either alone in reducing acute lung ischemia-reperfusion injury (ALIRI). Methods: Adult male Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats (n = 30) were equally randomized into group 1 (sham control), group 2 (ALIRI + culture medium), group 3 (ALIRI + intravenous autologous 1.2 × 106 He-ADMSCs at 30 minute, 6 h, and 24 h following lung ischemia/reperfusion for 45 minutes/72 hours, respectively), group 4 (ALIRI + 1.2 × 106 Sd-ADMSCs at identical time points after ischemia/reperfusion), and group 5 (ALIRI + 1.2 × 106 combined Sd-ADMSC/He-ADMSC 1:1). Results: Blood oxygen saturation (%) was lowest in group 2, lower in groups 3 to 5 than in group 1, and lower in group 5 than in group 1, whereas right ventricular systolic pressure (RVSP) showed a reverse pattern among the five groups (all p < 0.001). Additionally, changes in histological scoring of lung parenchymal damage, inflammatory and apoptotic biomarkers showed identical pattern compared to that of RVSP in all groups (all p < 0.001). Protein expressions of VCAM-1, ICAM-1, oxidative stress, TNF-α, nuclear factor-κB, and number of CD68 + cells were highest in group 2, higher in groups 3 to 5 than in group 1, and higher in groups 3 and 4 than in group 5, whereas NQO-1 and HO-1 activities and number of CD31 + and vWF + cells showed opposite changes compared with those of inflammatory biomarkers (all p < 0.001). Conclusion: Combined Sd-ADMSC/He-ADMSC therapy offered superior benefit to either option alone in minimizing rodent ALIRI through suppressing oxidative stress and inflammatory reaction.
Lung ischemia-reperfusion injury; serum-deprived mesenchymal stem cell; cytotherapy; inflammation; oxidative stress
This study investigated whether combining melatonin and apoptotic adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells (A-ADMSC) was superior to ADMSC alone in ameliorating sepsis-induced acute lung injury. Adult male Sprague-Dawley rats (n=50) were randomized equally into five groups: sham controls (SC), sepsis induced by cecal-ligation and puncture (CLP), CLP-melatonin, CLP-A-ADMSC, and CLP-melatonin-A-ADMSC. Circulating interleukin (IL)-6 at 6, 18, and 72 hrs, were highest in CLP and lowest in SC groups, higher in CLP-melatonin than CLP-A-ADMSC and CLP-melatonin-A-ADMSC groups, higher in CLP-A-ADMSC than CLP-melatonin-A-ADMSC groups (all p<0.001). Immune reactivity (indicated by circulating cytotoxic-, and regulatory-T cells) and WBC count at 72 h exhibited the same pattern as that of circulating IL-6 (all p<0.001). Changes in histological scoring of lung parenchyma and the number of CD68+ and CD14+ cells showed a similar pattern compared to that of IL-6 level in all groups (all p<0.001). Changes in protein expressions of inflammatory (oxidative stress, RANTES, TNF-α, NF-κB, MMP-9, MIP-1, IL-1β), apoptotic (cleaved caspase 3 and PARP, mitochondrial Bax), fibrotic (Smad3, TGF-β) markers and those of reactive-oxygen-species (NOX-1, NOX-2) displayed an identical pattern compared to that of circulating IL-6 in all groups (all p<0.001). Anti-oxidative capacities (GR+, GPx+, HO-1, NQO-1+) and angiogenesis marker (CXCR4+ cells) were lowest in SC group but highest in CLP-melatonin-A-ADMSC group, lower in CLP than CLP-melatonin and CLP-A-ADMSC groups, and lower in CLP-melatonin than CLP-A-ADMSC groups (all p<0.001). In conclusion, combined melatonin and A-ADMSC were superior to A-ADMSC alone in protecting the lung from sepsis-induced injury.
Sepsis-induced organ injury; inflammation; oxidative stress; reactive oxygen species; adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells; and melatonin
The millipede genus Chamberlinius is basically confined to Taiwan, with only one of the four known species presumably introduced to southern Japan. Both previously known species are redescribed, based on new material: Chamberlinius hualienensis Wang, 1956 (the type species) and Chamberlinius piceofasciatus (Gressitt, 1941), the latter being a new subjective senior synonym of Chamberlinius shengmui Wang, 1957, syn. n. Two further congeners are described as new: Chamberlinius pessior sp. n. and Chamberlinius sublaevus sp. n. The genus is re-diagnosed, all of its four species are keyed, and their distributions mapped. The tribe Chamberlinini is reclassified and, based on gonopod traits, shown to comprise the following five genera: Chamberlinius Wang, 1956, Haplogonosoma Brölemann, 1916, Riukiupeltis Verhoeff, 1939, Aponedyopus Verhoeff, 1939 and Geniculodesmus Chen, Golovatch and Chang, 2008.
Millipede; Chamberlinius; Chamberlinini; taxonomy; new species; key; distribution; Taiwan
Polydesmidae are represented in Taiwan by seven species in two genera. Neither of the genera is endemic to Taiwan, but six of the species are, including five new: Nipponesmus minor sp. n., Epanerchodus bispinosus sp. n., Epanerchodus curtigonopus sp. n., Epanerchodus flagellifer sp. n. and Epanerchodus pinguis sp. n. In addition, the diagnosis of the hitherto enigmatic genus Nipponesmus Chamberlin & Wang, 1953 is refined vis-à-vis the especially similar, Central Asian, Siberian and Eastern European genus Schizoturanius Verhoeff, 1931, chiefly based on new material of the type-species Nipponesmus shirinensis Chamberlin & Wang, 1953; this species is adequately redescribed and represents still another Taiwanese endemic. A key to all three currently known species of Nipponesmus Chamberlin & Wang, 1953 is given. The highly speciose Central to East Asian genus Epanerchodus Attems, 1901 is represented in Taiwan by five species, all keyed, including Epanerchodus orientalis Attems, 1901, which is long known to be highly variable in Japan and found particularly polymorphous and apparently allochthonous in Taiwan. The following synonymy is formalized: Epanerchodus orientalis orientalis Attems, 1901 = Epanerchodus orientalis takakuwai Verhoeff, 1913, syn. n. The genus Usbekodesmus Lohmander, 1932 is formally synonymized with Epanerchodus Attems, 1901, syn. n., resulting in the following new formal transfers: Epanerchodus redikorzevi (Lohmander, 1932), Epanerchodus swatensis (Golovatch, 1991), Epanerchodus varius (Geoffroy & Golovatch, 2004), Epanerchodus anachoretus (Golovatch, 1986), Epanerchodus buddhis (Golovatch, 1986), Epanerchodus occultus (Golovatch, 1986), Epanerchodus sacer (Golovatch, 1987), Epanerchodus theocraticus (Golovatch, 1990) and Epanerchodus theosophicus (Golovatch, 1986), all comb. n. ex Usbekodesmus. The distributions of all seven species of Polydesmidae occurring in Taiwan are mapped and discussed.
millipede; Polydesmidae; taxonomy; new species; new synonymy; key; Taiwan
The millipede genus Aponedyopus is endemic to Taiwan and contains three species. All previously described nominal species are considered to represent one species: Aponedyopus montanus Verhoeff, 1939 (the type species), including Aponedyopus reesi (Wang, 1957) and Aponedyopus maculatus Takakuwa, 1942, syn. n. Two further species are described as new: Aponedyopus similis sp. n. and Aponedyopus latilobatus sp. n. The genus is re-diagnosed, all of its three species are keyed, and their distributions mapped.
Millipede; Aponedyopus; taxonomy; new species; distribution; key; Taiwan
Intraventricular rupture of brain abscesses (IVRBA) remains a catastrophic and fatal complication of bacterial brain abscess (BBA). However, no information has been reported about the risk factors that are predictive of intraventricular rupture.
This study was undertaken to determine the potential risk factors that are predictive of intraventricular ruptures in patients with BBA but without intraventricular rupture when arriving at the hospital. A comparison is also made between patients who already have IVRBA at the time of admission (initial IVRBA) and those who have the episode during hospitalisation (subsequent IVRBA).
62 patients, including 45 who had initial IVRBA and 17 who had subsequent IVRBA, were examined. Stepwise logistic regression analysis showed that the adjusted risk of intraventricular rupture during hospitalisation for patients with multiloculated brain abscesses had an odds ratio (OR) of 4.2 (95% confidence interval (CI) 1.24 to 14.3; p = 0.02) compared with those without multiloculated brain abscesses (referent); a reduction of 1 mm in the distance between the ventricle and brain abscesses would increase the rupture rate by 10% (p = 0.006, OR 0.9, 95% CI 0.83 to 0.97).
This study shows that if the abscess is deep seated, multiloculated and close to the ventricle wall, a reduction of 1 mm in the distance between the ventricle and brain abscesses will increase the rupture rate by 10%. Despite aggressive medical and surgical management shown in this series, many patients continue to progress poorly.
Nucleos(t)ide analogues reduce the incidence of hepatitis B virus (HBV) reactivation in cancer patients undergoing systemic cytotoxic chemotherapy but the experience of solid tumors remains limited. Aims. The aim of this study was to compare the efficacy of entecavir and lamivudine in the prophylaxis of HBV reactivation in solid tumor patients undergoing systemic cytotoxic chemotherapy.
HBsAg seropositive patients undergoing systemic cytotoxic chemotherapy for solid tumors with prophylactic entecavir and lamivudine between January 2006 and June 2013 were retrospectively investigated. The incidence of HBV reactivation and outcome of the patients were analyzed. The risk factors of HBV reactivation were examined.
A total of 213 patients (entecavir group, 70 patients; lamivudine group, 143 patients) were evaluated. Less incidence of HBV reactivation was noticed in entecavir group than in lamivudine group (0% vs. 7.0%, P = 0.02). No HBV reactivation was noticed in the patients with a baseline HBV DNA level < 2000 IU/mL. A baseline HBV DNA level ≥ 2000 IU/mL, HBeAg, and lamivudine were significantly associated with HBV reactivation. Subgroup analysis of the patients with a baseline HBV DNA level ≥ 2000 IU/mL found that lamivudine was significantly associated with HBV reactivation. Most of the reactivation events were properly managed by using tenofovir disoproxil fumarate. The incidence of hepatitis during chemotherapy and disruption of chemotherapy was similar between patients using entecavir and lamivudine with a baseline HBV DNA level ≥ or < 2000 IU/mL.
A baseline HBV DNA level ≥ 2000 IU/mL, HBeAg, and lamivudine were the risk factors of HBV reactivation during systemic cytotoxic chemotherapy in solid tumor patients. Entecavir was superior to lamivudine in terms of less incidence of reactivation in the patients with a baseline HBV DNA level ≥ 2000 IU/mL. Both agents were equally efficacious in the patients with HBV DNA levels < 2000 IU/mL.
Objective: This study tested the hypothesis that autologous adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells (ADMSCs) embedded in platelet-rich fibrin (PRF) can significant promote myocardial regeneration and repair after acute myocardial infarction (AMI). Summary background: With avoiding the needle-related complications, PRF-embedded autologous ADMSCs graft provides a new effective stem cell-based therapeutic strategy for myocardial repair. Methods: Adult male Sprague-Dawley rats were equally divided (n = 8 per group) into group 1 (sham-operated), group 2 (AMI by ligating left coronary artery), group 3 (AMI+ PRF), and group 4 (AMI+PRF-embedded autologous ADMSCs). RPF with or without ADMSCs was patched on infarct area 1h after AMI induction. All animals were sacrificed on day 42 after echocardiography. Results: Left ventricular (LV) dimension and infarct/fibrotic areas were lowest in group 1, highest in group 2, in group 3 higher than in group 4, whereas LV performance and wall thickness exhibited a reversed pattern in all groups (all p < 0.001). Protein expressions of inflammatory (MMP-9, IL-1β), oxidative, apoptotic (Bax, cleaved PARP), fibrotic (Smad 3, TFG-β), hypertrophic (β-MHC), and heart failure (BNP) biomarkers displayed an identical pattern in infarct/fibrotic areas, whereas the protein expressions of anti-inflammatory (IL-10), anti-apoptotic (Bcl-2), anti-fibrotic (Smad1/5, BMP-2) biomarkers and α-MHC showed an opposite pattern (all p < 0.01). Angiogenic activities (c-Kit+, Sca-1+, CD31+, SDF-1α+, CXCR4+ cells; protein expressions of SDF-1α, CXCR4, VEGF) were highest in group 4 and lowest in group 1 (all p < 0.001). Conclusion: ADMSCs embedded in PRF offered significant benefit in preserving LV function and limiting LV remodeling after AMI.
Acute myocardial infarction; engineered tissue; platelet-rich fibrin; mesenchymal stem cells
Background: This study tested the hypothesis that peripheral blood-derived endothelial progenitor cell (PBDEPC) therapy can impede the deterioration of chronic kidney disease (CKD) induced by 5/6 nephrectomy in rats. Methods and results: Adult-male rats (n = 30) were equally categorized into group 1 (sham control), group 2 (CKD only) and group 3 [CKD + PBDEPC (left intra-arterial (3.3 × 105) and penile vein (6.7 × 105) injections by day 14 after CKD induction]. By day 60, kidney blood flow (KBF) was significantly lower in group 2 than that in groups 1 and 3, and significantly lower in group 3 than that in group 1, whereas the levels of serum creatinine, and kidney injury score and size showed an opposite pattern compared to that of KBF among all groups (all p < 0.001). Protein expressions of apoptotic (caspase 3, PARP), inflammatory (TNF-α, MMP-9), oxidative-stress (oxidized protein, NOX-1), fibrotic (Smad3, TGF-β), and hypoxic/ischemic cell-stress (HIF-1α, p-Akt) biomarkers showed an opposite pattern, whereas angiogenesis at protein (eNOS, CD31) and cellular (CD31+, CXCR4+) levels showed an identical pattern compared to that of blood flow in all groups (all p < 0.01). Other pro-angiogenic biomarkers (SDF-1α, CXCR4, VEGF) at protein and cellular levels and antioxidants (HO-1+, NQO 1, GR+) at cellular level showed progressive significant increase from groups 1 to 3 (all p < 0.001). Conclusion: The results support that PBDEPC therapy effectively inhibits the propagation of CKD and the deterioration of renal function through enhancement of angiogenesis, blood flow, and anti-oxidative capacity as well as suppression of inflammation, oxidative stress, apoptosis, and fibrosis in a rodent model.
Chronic kidney disease; 5/6 nephrectomy; apoptosis; inflammation; oxidative stress; angiogenesis
This study tested the hypothesis that exendin-4 protects against critical limb ischemia (CLI) in obese mice undergoing hypoxic stress (H). B6 mice were categorized into aged-matched control (C)-H (group 1-A), obesity (induced by high-fat diet) (O)-H (group 1-B), C-H-CLI (group 2-A), O-H-CLI (group 2-B), C-H-CLI-exendin-4 (group 3-A) and O-H-CLI-exendin-4 (group 3-B). Animals were sacrificed by day 14 after CLI procedure. By day 14, laser Doppler results showed that blood flow in CLI area was higher in group 3-A than group 2-A, higher in group 3-B than group 2-B, highest in groups 1-A and 1-B, higher in group 2-A than in group 2-B, and higher in group 3-A than in group 3-B (all p<0.001), but not significantly different between groups 1-A and 1-B. Furthermore, circulating numbers of endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) (c-kit/CD31+, Sca-1/KDR+) showed an identical pattern of blood flow in CLI area among groups 2-A, 2-B, 3-A and 3-B, except that these biomarkers were lowest in groups 1-A and 1-B (all p<0.001). Protein and cellular levels of angiogenesis factors (VEGF, CXCR4, SDF-1α) exhibited an identical pattern of circulating EPC numbers among all groups (all p<0.001). Protein levels of apoptotic (cytosolic cytochrome-C, mitochondrial Bax, cleaved caspase 3 and PARP) and fibrotic (Samd 3, TGF-β) biomarkers showed an opposite pattern of blood flow in CLI area among groups 2-A, 2-B, 3-A and 3-B, but were lowest in groups 1-A and 1-B (all p<0.001). This finding suggests exendin-4 protected against CLI in obese mice undergoing hypoxic stress mainly through enhancing angiogenesis and inhibiting apoptosis.
Critical limb ischemia; obesity; exendin-4; angiogenesis; apoptosis
We tested the hypothesis that apoptotic adipose-derived mesenchymal stem cells (A-ADMSC) are superior to healthy (H)-ADMSC in attenuating cecal ligation puncture (CLP)-induced sepsis-mediated lung and kidney injuries.
Adult male rats divided into group 1 (sham controls), group 2 (CLP), group 3 [CLP + H-ADMSC administered at 0.5, 6, and 18 hours after CLP], and group 4 [CLP + A-ADMSC administered as in group 3] were sacrificed 72 hours after CLP with blood, lung, and kidney collected for studies.
White blood cell (WBC) count, circulating TNF-α and creatinine levels were higher in groups 2 and 3 than in groups 1 and 4 (all P < 0.001). Kidney and lung damage scores were highest in group 2, lowest in group 1, significantly higher in group 3 than in group 4 (all P < 0.0001). Protein expressions of inflammatory (ICAM-1, MMP-9, TNF-α, NF-κB), oxidative, and apoptotic (Bax, caspase-3, PARP) biomarkers were higher in groups 2 and 3 than groups 1 and 4, whereas anti-apoptotic (Bcl-2) and mitochondrial integrity (cytochrome-C) biomarkers were lower in groups 2 and 3 than in groups 1 and 4 (all P < 0.001). Expressions of anti-oxidant biomarkers at protein (GR, GPx, NQO-1, HO-1) and cellular (GR, GPx) levels were highest in group 4 (all P < 0.001). The number of inflammatory cells (CD3+) in lungs and levels of DNA damage marker (γ-H2AX) in kidneys were higher in groups 2 and 3 than in groups 1 and 4 (all P < 0.001).
A-ADMSC therapy was superior to H-ADMSC therapy in protecting major organs from damage in rats with CLP-induced sepsis syndrome.
We tested the hypothesis that Lipofectamine siRNA delivery to deplete transient receptor potential cation channel (TRPC) 1 protein expression can suppress hypoxia-induced pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) in mice. Adult male C57BL/6 mice were equally divided into group 1 (normal controls), group 2 (hypoxia), and group 3 (hypoxia + siRNA TRPC1). By day 28, right ventricular systolic pressure (RVSP), number of muscularized arteries, right ventricle (RV), and lung weights were increased in group 2 than in group 1 and reduced in group 3 compared with group 2. Pulmonary crowded score showed similar pattern, whereas number of alveolar sacs exhibited an opposite pattern compared to that of RVSP in all groups. Protein expressions of TRPCs, HIF-1α, Ku-70, apoptosis, and fibrosis and pulmonary mRNA expressions of inflammatory markers were similar pattern, whereas protein expressions of antifibrosis and VEGF were opposite to the pattern of RVSP. Cellular markers of pulmonary DNA damage, repair, and smooth muscle proliferation exhibited a pattern similar to that of RVSP. The mRNA expressions of proapoptotic and hypertrophy biomarkers displayed a similar pattern, whereas sarcomere length showed an opposite pattern compared to that of RVSP in all groups. Lipofectamine siRNA delivery effectively reduced TRPC1 expression, thereby attenuating PAH-associated RV and pulmonary arteriolar remodeling.
We investigated whether attenuating dipeptidyl peptidase-IV (DPP4) enzyme activity protected rat heart from ischemia-reperfusion (IR) injury (40-min left anterior descending coronary artery ligation followed by 72 h reperfusion).
Methods and results
Adult male Fischer 344 rats (n = 24) were equally divided into sham-control (WT-SC), WT-IR, and WT-IR-Sita (oral sitagliptin 400 mg/kg/day for 3 days) groups, whereas adult male DPP4-deficiency (DPP4D) rats (n = 16) were equally divided into DPP4D-SC and DPP4D-IR groups. Animals were sacrificed at 72 h after reperfusion with collection of heart specimens. Infarct area (H&E), collagen deposition (Sirius-red stain), fibrotic area (Masson's trichrome), and fluorescent-ROS intensity (H2DCFDA-labeling myocardium) of left ventricle were significantly higher in WT-IR than those in other groups, significantly higher in WT-IR-Sita and DPP4D-IR groups than in WT-SC and DPP4D-SC groups (all p < 0.001), but there was no difference between the latter two groups. Protein expressions of oxidative stress (oxidized protein), reactive oxygen species (NOX-1, NOX-2), inflammation (TNF-α, NF-κB, MMP-9, VCAM-1), apoptosis (mitochondrial Bax, cleaved caspase-3 and PARP), myocardial damage markers (cytosolic cytochrome-C, γ-H2AX), and number of inflammatory cells (CD14+, CD68+, CD40+ cells) showed a pattern identical to that of histological changes among all groups (all p < 0.005), whereas markers of anti-apoptosis (Bcl-2) and mitochondrial integrity (mitochondrial cytochrome-C) as well as left ventricular ejection fraction showed an opposite pattern (all p < 0.001). Protein expressions of anti-oxidants (HO-1, NQO-1), angiogenesis factors (SDF-1α, CXCR4), and glycogen-like-peptide-1-receptor were significantly higher inWT-IR-Sita and DPP4D-IR than those in other groups (all p < 0.001).
Abrogation of DPP4 activity protects against myocardial IR injury and preserved heart function.
Ischemia-reperfusion injury; Dipeptidyl peptidase-IV (DPP4) enzyme; Sitagliptin; Inflammation; Oxidative stress; Heart function
Background: We investigated whether extracorporeal shock wave (ECSW) therapy can attenuate cyclophosphamide (CYP)-induced acute interstitial cystitis (AIC) in rats. Methods and Results: Eighteen male-adult Sprague-Dawley rats were equally divided into group 1 (sham control), group 2 (AIC induced by 150 mg/kg CYP by intra-peritoneal injection) and group 3 (AIC + ECSW 200 impulses at 0.11 mJ/mm2 to the urinary bladder at 3 and 24 h after CYP treatment). Smooth-muscle cells co-culture with menadione (25 µM) with and without ECSW treatment was performed. Western-blot results demonstrated that ECSW significant attenuated oxidative stress and inflammatory reactions in this in-vitro studies (all p < 0.001). 24-hour urine amount and microscopic findings of red-blood-cell count (i.e., hematuria) were higher in group 2 than in groups 1 and 3, and significantly higher in group 3 than in group 1 (all p < 0.001). The urine levels of albumin and interleukin-6 showed an identical pattern of hematuria among all three groups (all p < 0.001). The cellular and mRNA expressions of macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF)+, CD74+, CD68+, substance p+, and Cox-2+ cells in the bladder tissue exhibited an identical pattern of hematuria among all groups (all p < 0.0001). The integrity of epithelial layer and collagen-deposition area as stained by Sirius red displayed an opposite pattern of hematuria among the three groups (p < 0.0001). The protein expression of IL-12, iNOS, TNF-α, NF-κB, MMP-9, NOX-1, NOX-2, RANTES, and Oxyblot displayed an identical pattern of hematuria among all groups (all p < 0.01). Conclusion: ECSW therapy markedly attenuated CYP-induced AIC through inhibitions of the inflammation and oxidative stress.
Acute interstitial cystitis; cyclophosphamide treatment; extra-corporeal shock wave; inflammatory biomarkers
Seizures are one of the most important neurologic complications of human immuno-deficiency virus (HIV)-negative cryptococcal meningitis. A better understanding of the risk associated factors can help predict those who will require treatment.
This 22-year retrospective study enrolled 180 patients. Prognostic variables independently associated with seizures or fatality were analyzed using stepwise logistic regression.
Twenty-eight patients with HIV-negative cryptococcal meningitis had seizures, including 13 with early seizures and 15 with late seizures. The mean time interval from HIV-negative cryptococcal meningitis to first seizure in the early and late seizure groups were 1.5 and 51.4 days, respectively. Nine out of the 28 cases (32%) occurred within 24 hours of presentation. The overall mortality rate was 54% (15/28) and two patients progressed to epilepsy.
Patients with seizure have worse outcomes and longer hospitalization. Most first seizures occur within one year after the diagnosis of HIV-negative cryptococcal meningitis.
Outcome; Risk factors; Seizures; HIV-negative cryptococcal meningitis
We tested the hypothesis that clopidogrel and cilostazol combination therapy could effectively attenuate systemic inflammatory reaction, facilitate proliferation of circulating endothelial progenitor cell (EPC), and improve the clinical outcomes of critical limb ischemia (CLI) in patients unsuitable for surgical revascularization or percutaneous transluminal angioplasty (PTA).
A total 55 patients (mean age, 72 years; 56% female) were consecutively enrolled. Clopidogrel and cilostazol combination therapy was administered throughout the study period.
As compared with the baseline, circulating endothelial progenitor cell level (as shown by flow cytometry) was significantly increased (p < 0.003), whereas the CLI-related ulcers and painfulness were significantly improved (all p < 0.01) by day 90 after treatment. On the other hand, after clopidogrel and cilostazol combination therapy, galectin-3 level, lipoprotein-associated phospholipase A2 gene expression, and RhoA/ROCK-related protein expression in peripheral blood mononuclear cells were significantly suppressed (all p < 0.01). Eventually, by day 90, 5 patients (9.1%) died of other etiologies, 3 (5.5%) withdrew from the study, 6 (10.9%) required amputation, and the remaining 41 had satisfactory clinical improvement with complete wound healing in 9 (16.4%) patients.
The results of the present study highlight that clopidogrel and cilostazol combination therapy may be considered to be an alternative method for treating patients with CLI unsuitable for surgical revascularization or PTA.
Critical limb ischemia; Endothelial progenitor cells; Inflammation; Clopidogrel; Cilostazol therapy
Vascular abnormalities are the predominant histologic changes associated with radiation in nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC). This study examined if the duration after radiotherapy correlates with the progression of carotid intima-media thickness (IMT) and investigated its relationship with inflammatory markers.
One hundred and five NPC patients post-radiotherapy for more than one year and 25 healthy control subjects were examined by B-mode ultrasound for IMT measurement at the far wall of the common carotid artery (CCA). Surrogate markers including lipid profile, HbA1c, and high sensitive C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) were assessed.
The IMT of CCA was significantly increased in NPC patients and carotid plaque was detected in 38 NPC patients (38/105, 36.2%). Significant risk factors for carotid plaques included age, duration after radiotherapy, and HbA1c levels. Age, duration after radiotherapy, hs-CRP, HbA1c, and platelet count positively correlated with IMT. The cut-off value of age and duration after radiotherapy for the presence of plaque was 52.5 years and 42.5 months, respectively. In NPC subjects, multiple linear regression analysis revealed that age, gender, duration after radiotherapy and platelet counts were independently associated with CCA IMT. After adjustments for age, gender and platelet counts, IMT increased in a linear manner with duration after radiotherapy.
Radiation-induced vasculopathy is a dynamic and progressive process due to late radiation effects. Extra-cranial color-coded duplex sonography can be part of routine follow-up in NPC patients aged ≥50 years at 40 months post-radiotherapy.
Atherosclerosis; Nasopharyngeal carcinoma; Radiotherapy; Risk factors
This study investigated the association between innate immune reaction and myocardial damage after acute myocardial infarction (AMI) and anti-inflammatory role of tacrolimus in reducing infarct size. Male mini-pigs (n=18) were equally categorized into sham control (SC), untreated AMI (by ligation of left anterior descending coronary artery), and AMI-Tacrolimus (AMI-Tac) (0.5 mg intra-coronary injection 30 minutes post-AMI). Cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was performed at post-AMI days 2, 5 and 21 before sacrificing the animals.
By post-AMI day 21, left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) was lowest in untreated AMI animals, significantly higher in SC than in AMI-Tac group (all p<0.003). Infarct areas at basal, middle, and apical levels, numbers of CD14+ and iNOS+ cells in infarct area (IA) and peri-IA, and protein expression of CD14, CD68, and Ly6g from circulating inflammatory cells showed an opposite pattern compared with that of LVEF in all groups (all p<0.005). Protein expressions of MCP-1, MIP-1, TNF-α, NF-κB, iNOS, and IL-12 in IA and peri-IA exhibited an identical pattern compared to that of CD14, CD68, and Ly6g from circulating inflammatory cells (all p<0.01). Expressions of myocardial damage biomarkers in IA and peri-IA [γ-H2AX, β-myosin heavy chain (MHC), Smad3, TGF-β] were highest in AMI and higher in AMI-Tac than in SC, whereas expressions of myocardial integrity biomarkers (connexin43, mitochondrial cytochrome-C, α-MHC, BMP-2, Smad1/5) were opposite to those of damage biomarkers (all p<0.001).
Innate immune responses were markedly augmented and LVEF was significantly reduced after AMI but were remarkably improved after tacrolimus treatment.
This study tested the hypothesis that exendin-4 and sitagliptin can effectively protect kidney from acute ischemia-reperfusion (IR) injury.
Adult SD-rats (n = 48) equally divided into group 1 (sham control), group 2 (IR injury), group 3 [IR + sitagliptin 600 mg/kg at post-IR 1, 24, 48 hr)], and group 4 [IR + exendin-4 10 μm/kg at 1 hr after procedure] were sacrificed after 24 and 72 hrs (n = 6 at each time from each group) following clamping of bilateral renal pedicles for 60 minutes (groups 2–4).
Serum creatinine level and urine protein to creatinine ratio were highest in group 2 and lowest in group 1 (all p < 0.001) without notable differences between groups 3 and 4. Kidney injury score, expressions of inflammatory biomarkers at mRNA (MMP-9, TNF-α, IL-1β, PAI-1), protein (TNF-α, NF-κB and VCAM-1), and cellular (CD68+) levels in injured kidneys at 24 and 72 hr showed an identical pattern compared to that of creatinine level in all groups (all p < 0.0001). Expressions of oxidized protein, reactive oxygen species (NOX-1, NOX-2), apoptosis (Bax, caspase-3 and PARP), and DNA damage marker (γH2AX+) of IR kidney at 24 and 72 hrs exhibited a pattern similar to that of inflammatory mediators among all groups (all p < 0.01). Renal expression of glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor, and anti-oxidant biomarkers at cellular (GPx, GR) and protein (NQO-1, HO-1, GPx) levels at 24 and 72 hr were lowest in group 1, significantly lower in group 2 than in groups 3 and 4 (all p < 0.01).
Exendin-4 and sitagliptin provided significant protection for the kidneys against acute IR injury.
Exendin-4; Sitagliptin; Acute ischemia-reperfusion injury; Inflammation; Oxidative stress
Laryngeally echolocating bats avoid self-deafening (forward masking) by separating pulse and echo either in time using low duty cycle (LDC) echolocation, or in frequency using high duty cycle (HDC) echolocation. HDC echolocators are specialized to detect fluttering targets in cluttered environments. HDC echolocation is found only in the families Rhinolophidae and Hipposideridae in the Old World and in the New World mormoopid, Pteronotus parnellii. Here we report that the hipposiderid Coelops frithii, ostensibly an HDC bat, consistently uses an LDC echolocation strategy whether roosting, flying, or approaching a fluttering target rotating at 50 to 80 Hz. We recorded the echolocation calls of free-flying C. frithii in the field in various situations, including presenting bats with a mechanical fluttering target. The echolocation calls of C. frithii consisted of an initial narrowband component (0.5±0.3 ms, 90.6±2.0 kHz) followed immediately by a frequency modulated (FM) sweep (194 to 113 kHz). This species emitted echolocation calls at duty cycles averaging 7.7±2.8% (n = 87 sequences). Coelops frithii approached fluttering targets more frequently than did LDC bats (C.frithii, approach frequency = 40.4%, n = 80; Myotis spp., approach frequency = 0%, n = 13), and at the same frequency as sympatrically feeding HDC species (Hipposideros armiger, approach rate = 53.3%, n = 15; Rhinolophus monoceros, approach rate = 56.7%, n = 97). We propose that the LDC echolocation strategy used by C. frithii is derived from HDC ancestors, that this species adjusts the harmonic contents of its echolocation calls, and that it may use both the narrowband component and the FM sweep of echolocations calls to detect fluttering targets.
We hypothesized that dipeptidyl peptidase-IV (DPP4) may impair angiogenesis, endothelial function, and the circulating number of endothelial progenitor cells (EPC) in a model of critical limb ischemia (CLI) through ligating the left femoral artery using DPP4-deficient rats.
Adult male DPP4-deficient (DPP4D) rats (n = 18) were equally divided into CLI only (DPP4D-CLI) and CLI treated by granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (GCSF) (DPP4D-CLI-GCSF). For comparison, age-matched wild-type (WT) Fischer 344 rats (n = 18) were randomized into two groups receiving identical treatment compared to their DPP4-deficient counterparts and labeled as WT-CLI (n = 9) and WT-CLI-GCSF (n = 9), respectively.
The circulating number of EPCs (CD31+, CD34+, CD133, C-kit+) was significantly lower in DPP4-deficient than in WT rats on post-CLI days 1 and 4 (all P < 0.01). The ratio of ischemia/normal blood flow was remarkably lower in DPP4D-CLI-GCSF rats than in WT-CLI-GCSF animals on post-CLI Day 14 (all P < 0.01). Protein expressions of pro-angiogenic factors (endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS), CXCR4, SDF-1α, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)) were remarkably higher in WT-CLI than in DPP4D-CLI rats, and higher in WT-CLI-GCSF than in DPP4D-CLI-GCSF animals (all P < 0.01). Moreover, the numbers of small vessel in the ischemic area were substantially higher in WT-CLI-GCSF than in DPP4D-CLI-GCSF rats (P < 0.001). Furthermore, vasorelaxation and nitric oxide production of the normal femoral artery were significantly reduced in DPP4-deficient than in WT Fischer rats (all P < 0.01).
Contrary to our hypothesis, DPP4-deficient rats were inferior to age-matched WT Fischer rats in terms of angiogenesis, endothelial function, circulating EPC number and response to GCSF, suggesting a positive role of DPP4 in maintaining vascular function and tissue perfusion in this experimental setting.
This study aimed to analyze the clinical features, causative pathogens, neuro-imaging findings, and therapeutic outcomes of bacterial brain abscess in patients with nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) following radiotherapy.
NPC patients with bacterial brain abscess were evaluated. Their clinical data were collected over a 22-year period. For comparison, the clinical features, causative pathogens, neuro-imaging findings, and therapeutic outcomes between NPC and non-NPC patients were analyzed.
NPC accounted for 5.7% (12/210) of the predisposing factors, with Viridans streptococci and Staphylococcus aureus as the two most common causative pathogens. Significant statistical analysis between the two groups (NPC and non-NPC patients) included chronic otitis media (COM) as the underlying disease, post-radiation necrosis by neuro-imaging, and the temporal lobe as the most common site of brain abscesses. The fatality rate in patients with and without NPC was 16.7% and 20.7%, respectively.
NPC patients with bacterial brain abscess frequently have COM as the underlying disease. Neuro-imaging often reveals both post-radiation necrosis and the temporal lobe as the most common site of brain abscesses, the diagnosis of which is not always a straightforward process. Radiation necrosis can mimic brain abscess on neuro-imaging and pose significant diagnostic challenges. Early diagnosis and treatment is essential for survival.
Bacterial brain abscess; Nasopharyngeal carcinoma; Therapeutic outcome
Background and aim
Procedural failure and untoward clinical outcomes after surgery remain problematic in critical limb ischemia (CLI) patients. This study tested a clopidogrel-cilostazol combination treatment compared with either treatment alone in attenuating CLI and improving CLI-region blood flow in rats.
Male Sprague–Dawley rats (n = 40) were equally divided into five groups: control, CLI induction only, CL I + cilostazol (12.0 mg/day/kg), CLI + clopidogrel (8.0 mg/kg/day) and CLI + combined cilostazol-clopidogrel. After treatment for 21 days, Laser Doppler imaging was performed.
On day 21, the untreated CLI group had the lowest ratio of ischemic/normal blood flow (p < 0.001). Inflammation measured by VCAM-1 protein expression; oxidative stress; PAI-1, MMP-9 and TNF-α mRNA expressions; and immunofluorescence staining (IF) of CD68+ cells was lower with combined treatment than with the other treatments, and lower in the two single-treatment groups than the untreated CLI group (all p < 0.01). Anti-inflammatory mRNA expression of interleukin-10, and eNOS showed a reverse pattern among these groups. Apoptosis measured by Bax, caspase-3 and PARP; and muscle damage measured by cytosolic cytochrome-C, and serum and muscle micro-RNA-206 were all lowest with combination treatment, and the two single-treatment groups showed lower values than the untreated group (all p < 0.001). Angiogenesis measured by eNOS, IF staining of CD31+ and vWF + cells; and number of vessels in CLI region were highest with combination treatment and higher in the single-treatment groups than the untreated group (all p < 0.001).
Combined cilostazol-clopidogrel therapy is superior to either agent alone in improving ischemia in rodent CLI.
Critical limb ischemia; Apoptosis; Inflammation; Pharmacomodulation; Angiogenesis
The roles of circulating endothelial progenitor cell (EPC) and mononuclear cell apoptosis (MCA) in liver cirrhosis (LC) patients are unknown. Moreover, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and stromal cell-derived factor (SDF)-1α are powerful endogenous substances enhancing EPC migration into circulation. We assessed the level and function of EPCs [CD31/CD34 (E1), KDR/CD34 (E2), CXCR4/CD34 (E3)], levels of MCA, VEGF and SDF-1α in circulation of LC patients.
Blood sample was prospectively collected once for assessing EPC level and function, MCA, and plasma levels of VEGF and SDF-1α using flow cytometry and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), respectively, in 78 LC patients and 25 age- and gender-matched healthy controls.
Number of EPCs (E1, E2, E3) was lower (all p < 0.0001), whereas SDF-1α level and MCA were higher (p < 0.001) in study patients compared with healthy controls. Number of EPCs (E2, E3) was higher but MCA was lower (all p < 0.05) in Child's class A compared with Child's class B and C patients, although no difference in VEGF and SDF-1α levels were noted among these patients. Chronic hepatitis B and esophageal varices bleeding were independently, whereas chronic hepatitis C, elevated aspartate aminotransferase (AST), and decompensated LC were inversely and independently correlated with circulating EPC level (all p < 0.03). Additionally, angiogenesis and transwell migratory ability of EPCs were reduced in LC patients than in controls (all p < 0.001).
The results of this study demonstrated that level, angiogenic capacity, and function of circulating EPCs were significantly reduced, whereas plasma levels of SDF-1α and circulating MCA were substantially enhanced in cirrhotic patients.
Liver cirrhosis; Circulating endothelial progenitor cells; Angiogenesis factors; Cellular apoptosis
Obesity is an important cardiovascular risk factor. This study tested the effect of obesity reduction on preserving left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) and attenuating inflammation, oxidative stress and LV remodeling in obese mice.
Methods and results
Eight-week-old C57BL/6 J mice (n=24) were equally divided into control (fed a control diet for 22 weeks), obesity (high-fat diet, 22 weeks), and obese reduction (OR) (high-fat diet, 14 weeks; then control diet, 8 weeks). Animals were sacrificed at post 22-week high-fat diet and the LV myocardium collected. Heart weight, body weight, abdominal-fat weight, total cholesterol level and fasting blood glucose were higher in obesity than in control and OR (all p<0.001). Inflammation measured by mRNA expressions of IL-6, MMP-9, PAI-1 and leptin and protein expression of NF-κB was higher, whereas anti-inflammation measured by mRNA expressions of adiponectin and INF-γ was lower in obesity than in control and OR (all p<0.003). Oxidative protein expressions of NOX-1, NOX-2 and oxidized protein were higher, whereas expression of anti-oxidant markers HO-1 and NQO-1 were lower (all p<0.01); and apoptosis measured by Bax and caspase 3 was higher, whereas anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 was lower in obesity as compared with control and OR (all p<0.001). The expressions of fibrotic markers phosphorylated Smad3 and TGF-β were higher, whereas expression of anti-fibrotic phosphorylated Smad1/5 and BMP-2 were lower (all p<0.02); and LVEF was lower, whereas the LV remodeling was higher in obesity than in control and OR (all p<0.001).
Impaired LVEF, enhanced LV remodeling, inflammation, fibrosis, oxidative stress and apoptosis were reversed by reduction in mouse obesity.
Obesity; Inflammation; Oxidative stress; Apoptosis; Fibrosis