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1.  Association of MICA polymorphism with HLA-B51 and disease severity in Korean patients with Behcet's disease. 
Journal of Korean Medical Science  2002;17(3):366-370.
The HLA-B51 allele is known to be associated with Behcet's disease (BD) in many ethnic group. However, it has not yet been clarified whether the HLA-B51 gene itself is the pathogenic gene related to BD or whether it is some other gene in linkage disequlibrium with HLA-B51. Recently, the Triplet repeat (GCT/AGC) polymorphism in transmembrane region of the MHC class I chain-related A (MICA) gene was identified. To investigate the association of MICA with BD, we studied the MICA polymorphism in 108 Korean BD patients and 204 healthy controls in relation to the presence of HLA-B51 and clinical manifestations. The triplet repeat polymorphism was determined by polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-denaturing polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (PAGE). The phenotype frequency of the MICA*A6 allele (relative risk, RR=2.15, p=0.002) and HLA-B51(RR=1.87, p=0.022) were significantly increased in the Korean patients with BD. A strong linkage disequilibrium was observed between the MICA*A6 and HLA-B51 in both the patients with BD and control subjects. Stratification analysis showed that MICA*A6 homozygosity was strongly associated with BD in the HLA-B51-negative population, and HLA-B51 was also associated with MICA*A6-negative population. In conclusion, MICA*A6 rather than HLA-B51 was strongly associated with Korean patients with BD, and the MICA*A6 allele is a useful susceptibility marker of BD, especially in the HLA-B5-negative
PMCID: PMC3054872  PMID: 12068141
2.  Reduced E-cadherin expression as a cause of distinctive signet-ring cell variant in colorectal carcinoma. 
Colorectal signet-ring cell carcinoma (SRCC) is a rare type of adenocarcinoma and presents with distinctive clinicopathological features. This study was performed to assess the biological characteristics of colorectal SRCC regarding the E-cadherin expression. Seventeen patients with primary colorectal SRCC were identified and their clinicopathological characteristics were analyzed. The mean age of the 17 patients was 45.3 yr (14-68). Immunohistochemical staining of E-cadherin and beta-catenin were performed in ten colorectal SRCCs and in 30 ordinary colorectal adenocarcinomas as control. Primary colorectal SRCC occurred in 0.7% of 2,388 colorectal adenocarcinomas. Most patients had advanced stage tumor at surgery (stage III and IV, AJCC: 82%). Five-year survival rate was 16%. Peritoneal seeding was the most common recurrence pattern (41%) and liver metastasis was not identified. All SRCCs showed a markedly reduced or absent expression of E-cadherin on immunohistochemical staining, whereas seven (23.3%) of ordinary carcinomas showed reduced expression, thereby indicating a significant difference between the two groups (p<0.005). In immunohistochemical staining for beta-catenin, eight of ten SRCCs showed reduced membrane expression that did not attain statistical significance compared to ordinary adenocarcinomas. It is suggested that aberrant E-cadherin expression may explain the distinct clinicopathological features in primary colorectal SRCC.
PMCID: PMC3054813  PMID: 11850584
3.  Effects of air pollutants on acute stroke mortality. 
Environmental Health Perspectives  2002;110(2):187-191.
The relationship between stroke and air pollution has not been adequately studied. We conducted a time-series study to examine the evidence of an association between air pollutants and stroke over 4 years (January 1995-December 1998) in Seoul, Korea. We used a generalized additive model to regress daily stroke death counts for each pollutant, controlling for seasonal and long-term trends and meteorologic influences, such as temperature, relative humidity, and barometric pressure. We observed an estimated increase of 1.5% [95% confidence interval (CI), 1.3-1.8%] and 2.9% (95% CI, 0.3-5.5%) in stroke mortality for each interquartile range increase in particulate matter < 10 microm aerodynamic diameter (PM(10)) and ozone concentrations in the same day. Stroke mortality also increased 3.1% (95% CI, 1.1-5.1%) for nitrogen dioxide, 2.9% (95% CI, 0.8-5.0%) for sulfur dioxide, and 4.1% (95% CI, 1.1-7.2%) for carbon monoxide in a 2-day lag for each interquartile range increase in single-pollutant models. When we examined the associations among PM(10) levels stratified by the level of gaseous pollutants and vice versa, we found that these pollutants are interactive with respect to their effects on the risk of stroke mortality. We also observed that the effects of PM(10) on stroke mortality differ significantly in subgroups by age and sex. We conclude that PM(10) and gaseous pollutants are significant risk factors for acute stroke death and that the elderly and women are more susceptible to the effect of particulate pollutants.
PMCID: PMC1240734  PMID: 11836148

Results 1-3 (3)