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2.  Takayasu's arteritis presenting with temporary loss of vision in a 23-year-old woman with beta thalassemia trait: a case report 
Introduction
The simultaneous presence of Takayasu's arteritis and beta thalassemia trait is a rare combination. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first case report on Takayasu's arteritis and beta thalassemia presenting together.
Case presentation
This is a case report of a 23-year-old Asian woman of Pakistani descent who presented with a headache, blurred vision and dizziness.
Conclusion
The correct diagnosis of our patient was based on clinical suspicion, appropriate imaging studies, and deliberation of the differential diagnosis. The management of our patient depended on the correct diagnosis of both the diseases.
doi:10.1186/1752-1947-5-466
PMCID: PMC3187748  PMID: 21933404
3.  LIM kinase 1 - dependent cofilin 1 pathway and actin dynamics mediate nuclear retinoid receptor function in T lymphocytes 
BMC Molecular Biology  2011;12:41.
Background
It is known that retinoid receptor function is attenuated during T cell activation, a phenomenon that involves actin remodeling, suggesting that actin modification may play a role in such inhibition. Here we have investigated the role of actin dynamics and the effect of actin cytoskeleton modifying agents on retinoid receptor-mediated transactivation.
Results
Agents that disturb the F-actin assembly or disassembly attenuated receptor-mediated transcription indicating that actin cytoskeletal homeostasis is important for retinoid receptor function. Overexpression or siRNA-induced knockdown of cofilin-1 (CFL1), a key regulator of F-actin assembly, induced the loss of receptor function. In addition, expression of either constitutively active or inactive/dominant-negative mutants of CFL1or CFL1 kinase LIMK1 induced loss of receptor function suggesting a critical role of the LIMK1-mediated CFL1 pathway in receptor-dependent transcription. Further evidence of the role of LMK1/CFL1-mediated actin dynamics, was provided by studying the effect of Nef, an actin modifying HIV-1 protein, on receptor function. Expression of Nef induced phosphorylation of CFL1 at serine 3 and LIMK1 at threonine 508, inhibited retinoid-receptor mediated reporter activity, and the expression of a number of genes that contain retinoid receptor binding sites in their promoters. The results suggest that the Nef-mediated inhibition of receptor function encompasses deregulation of actin filament dynamics by LIMK1 activation and phosphorylation of CFL1.
Conclusion
We have identified a critical role of LIMK1-mediated CFL1 pathway and actin dynamics in modulating retinoid receptor mediated function and shown that LIMK1-mediated phosphocycling of CFL1 plays a crucial role in maintaining actin homeostasis and receptor activity. We suggest that T cell activation-induced repression of nuclear receptor-dependent transactivation is in part through the modification of actin dynamics.
doi:10.1186/1471-2199-12-41
PMCID: PMC3187726  PMID: 21923909
4.  Factors Associated with Adherence to Anti-Hypertensive Treatment in Pakistan 
PLoS ONE  2007;2(3):e280.
Objectives
Poor adherence is one of the biggest obstacles in therapeutic control of high blood pressure. The objectives of this study were (i) to measure adherence to antihypertensive therapy in a representative sample of the hypertensive Pakistani population and (ii) to investigate the factors associated with adherence in the studied population.
Methods and Results
A cross-sectional study was conducted on a simple random sample of 460 patients at the Aga Khan University Hospital (AKUH) and National Institute of Cardiovascular Diseases, Karachi, from September 2005–May 2006. Adherence was assessed using the Morisky Medication Adherence Scale (MMAS), with scores ranging from 0 (non-adherent) to 4 (adherent). In addition to MMAS, patient self-reports about the number of pills taken over a prescribed period were used to estimate adherence as a percentage. AKU Anxiety and Depression Scale (AKU-ADS) was incorporated to find any association between depression and adherence. At a cut-off value of 80%, 77% of the cases were adherent. Upon univariate analyses, increasing age, better awareness and increasing number of pills prescribed significantly improved adherence, while depression showed no association. Significant associations, upon multivariate analyses, included number of drugs that a patient was taking (P<0.02) and whether he/she was taking medication regularly or only for symptomatic relief (P<0.00001).
Conclusions
Similar to what has been reported worldwide, younger age, poor awareness, and symptomatic treatment adversely affected adherence to antihypertensive medication in our population. In contrast, monotherapy reduced adherence, whereas psychosocial factors such as depression showed no association. These findings may be used to identify the subset of population at risk of low adherence who should be targeted for interventions to achieve better blood pressure control and hence prevent complications.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0000280
PMCID: PMC1805684  PMID: 17356691

Results 1-4 (4)