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1.  Accuracy of contrast-enhanced ultrasound in the detection of bladder cancer 
The British Journal of Radiology  2011;84(1008):1091-1099.
To assess the accuracy contrast-enhanced ultrasound (CEUS) in bladder cancer detection using transurethral biopsy in conventional cystoscopy as the reference standard and to determine whether CEUS improves the bladder cancer detection rate of baseline ultrasound.
43 patients with suspected bladder cancer underwent conventional cystoscopy with transurethral biopsy of the suspicious lesions. 64 bladder cancers were confirmed in 33 out of 43 patients. Baseline ultrasound and CEUS were performed the day before surgery and the accuracy of both techniques for bladder cancer detection and number of detected tumours were analysed and compared with the final diagnosis.
CEUS was significantly more accurate than ultrasound in determining presence or absence of bladder cancer: 88.37% vs 72.09%. Seven of eight uncertain baseline ultrasound results were correctly diagnosed using CEUS. CEUS sensitivity was also better than that of baseline ultrasound per number of tumours: 65.62% vs 60.93%. CEUS sensitivity for bladder cancer detection was very high for tumours larger than 5 mm (94.7%) but very low for tumours <5 mm (20%) and also had a very low negative predictive value (28.57%) in tumours <5 mm.
CEUS provided higher accuracy than baseline ultrasound for bladder cancer detection, being especially useful in non-conclusive baseline ultrasound studies.
PMCID: PMC3473820  PMID: 21123306
2.  Determining which mechanisms lead to activation in the motor cortex: a modeling study of transcranial magnetic stimulation using realistic stimulus waveforms and sulcal geometry1 
To determine which mechanisms lead to activation of neurons in the motor cortex during transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) with different current directions and pulse waveforms.
The total electric field induced in a simplified model of a cortical sulcus by a figure-eight coil was calculated using the finite element method (FEM). This electric field was then used as the input to determine the response of compartmental models of several types of neurons.
The modeled neurons were stimulated at different sites: fiber bends for pyramidal tract neurons, axonal terminations for cortical interneurons and axon collaterals, and a combination of both for pyramidal association fibers. All neurons were more easily stimulated by a PA directed electric field, except association fibers. Additionally, the second phase of a biphasic pulse was found to be more efficient than the first phase of either monophasic or biphasic pulses.
The stimulation threshold for different types of neurons depends on the pulse waveform and current direction. The reported results might account for the range of responses obtained in TMS of the motor cortex when using different stimulation parameters.
Modeling studies combining electric field calculations and neuronal models may lead to a deeper understanding of the effect of the TMS-induced electric field on cortical tissue, and may be used to evaluate improvements in TMS coil and waveform design.
PMCID: PMC3053122  PMID: 21035390
transcranial magnetic stimulation; TMS; activation; mechanism; motor cortex; FEM
3.  Autologous stem cell transplantation improves quality of life in economically challenged, Brazilian multiple myeloma patients 
Clinics  2011;66(11):1855-1859.
1) To characterize the impact of multiple myeloma on the quality of life of patients treated in two public institutions in São Paulo State, Brazil, using a generic Short Form 36 Health Survey and a questionnaire specific for oncologic patients (QLQ-C30) upon diagnosis, after the clinical treatment, and at day +100 after autologous stem cell transplantation; 2) to evaluate whether autologous stem cell transplantation can improve the quality of life of our economically challenged population aside from providing a clinical benefit and disease control.
We evaluated 49 patients with multiple myeloma (a total of 70 interviews) using the two questionnaires. The scores upon diagnosis, post-treatment/pre-autologous stem cell transplantation, and at D+100 were compared using ANOVA (a comparison of the three groups), post hoc tests (two-by-two comparisons of the three groups), and paired t-tests (the same case at two different times).
: Of the included patients, 87.8% had a family budget under US $600 (economic class C, D, or E) per month. The generic Short Form 36 Health Survey questionnaire demonstrated that physical function, role-physical, and bodily pain indices were statistically different across all three groups, favoring the D+100 autologous stem cell transplantation group (ANOVA). The questionnaire specific for oncologic patients, the QLQ-C30 questionnaire, confirmed what had been demonstrated by the Short Form 36 Health Survey with respect to physical function and bodily pain, with improvements in role functioning, fatigue, and lack of appetite and constipation, favoring the D+100 autologous stem cell transplant group (ANOVA). The post hoc tests and paired t-tests confirmed a better outcome after autologous stem cell transplantation.
The questionnaire specific for cancer patients seems to be more informative than the generic Short Form 36 Health Survey questionnaire and reflects the real benefit of autologous stem cell transplantation in the quality of life of multiple myeloma patients in two public Brazilian institutions that provide assistance for economically challenged patients.
PMCID: PMC3203955  PMID: 22086513
Myeloma; Quality of life; SF-36; QLQ-C30; Transplantation
4.  Prognostic impact of cancer/testis antigen expression in advanced stage multiple myeloma patients 
This study aims to analyze the expression of 14 cancer/testis (CT) antigens in multiple myeloma (MM) to identify possible prognostic markers and therapeutic targets. The expression of MAGEA1, MAGEA2, MAGEA3/6, MAGEA4, MAGEA10, MAGEA12, BAGE1, MAGEC1/CT7, the GAGE family, LAGE-1, PRAME, NY-ESO-1, SPA17 and SSX1 was studied by RT-PCR in 15 normal tissues, a pool of 10 normal bone marrow samples, 3 normal tonsils and bone marrow aspirates from 6 normal donors, 3 monoclonal gammopathies of undetermined significance (MGUS), 5 solitary plasmacytomas, 39 MM samples (95% advanced stage) and the MM cell line U266. MAGEC1/CT7 was expressed in bone marrow aspirates from one MGUS and one plasmacytoma. The frequencies at which CT antigen were found to be expressed in MM patients were MAGEC1/CT7 77%, LAGE-1 49%, MAGEA3/6 41%, MAGEA2 36%, GAGE family 33%, NY-ESO-1 33%, BAGE-1 28%, MAGEA1 26%, PRAME 23%, SSX-1 26%, MAGEA12 20.5%, MAGEA4 0%, and MAGEA10 0%. Cox's regression model showed that GAGE family expression and having >6 CT antigens expressed were independent prognostic factors when all patients were analyzed. However, MAGEC1/CT7 expression was the only independent prognostic factor when non-transplanted patients where analyzed. Based on our findings, MAGEC1/CT7, MAGEA3/6 and LAGE-1 are good candidates for immunotherapy, since together they cover 85% of our MM cases. Furthermore, expression of the GAGE family, >6 CT antigens and MAGEC1/CT7 seem to have impact on MM prognosis.
PMCID: PMC2935785  PMID: 18237105
human; multiple myeloma; CT antigens; mRNA; tissue distribution; prognosis
5.  Medial prefrontal cortex pathology in schizophrenia as revealed by convergent findings from multimodal imaging 
Molecular Psychiatry  2010;15(8):823-830.
Neuroimaging studies have found evidence of altered brain structure and function in schizophrenia, but have had complex findings regarding the localization of abnormality. We applied multimodal imaging (voxel-based morphometry (VBM), functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) combined with tractography) to 32 chronic schizophrenic patients and matched healthy controls. At a conservative threshold of P=0.01 corrected, structural and functional imaging revealed overlapping regions of abnormality in the medial frontal cortex. DTI found that white matter abnormality predominated in the anterior corpus callosum, and analysis of the anatomical connectivity of representative seed regions again implicated fibres projecting to the medial frontal cortex. There was also evidence of convergent abnormality in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, although here the laterality was less consistent across techniques. The medial frontal region identified by these three imaging techniques corresponds to the anterior midline node of the default mode network, a brain system which is believed to support internally directed thought, a state of watchfulness, and/or the maintenance of one's sense of self, and which is of considerable current interest in neuropsychiatric disorders.
PMCID: PMC2927029  PMID: 20065955
schizophrenia; voxel-based morphometry; fMRI; diffusion tensor imaging; default mode network; anterior cingulate cortex

Results 1-5 (5)