BioMed Research International The latest articles from Hindawi © 2017 , Hindawi Limited . All rights reserved. Vitamin B-6, Independent of Homocysteine, Is a Significant Factor in Relation to Inflammatory Responses for Chronic Kidney Disease and Hemodialysis Patients Tue, 26 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 The purpose of this study was to investigate whether plasma pyridoxal 5′-phosphate (PLP) and homocysteine were dependent on or independent of each other in order to be associated with inflammatory markers in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) or those receiving hemodialysis treatment. This was a cross-sectional study. Sixty-eight stage 2–5 CKD patients and 68 hemodialysis patients had one time fasting blood drawn for measurements of plasma PLP, pyridoxal (PL), homocysteine, and several inflammatory markers. Early CKD stage (stages 2-3) patients showed significantly lower plasma PLP levels and homocysteine concentrations than patients in an advanced CKD stage (stages 4-5) and those undergoing hemodialysis. Plasma PLP significantly correlated with CRP levels (partial = −0.21, ) and plasma PL significantly correlated with IL-10 levels (partial = −0.24, ), while plasma PLP plus PL significantly correlated with both CRP levels (partial = −0.20, ) and interleukin-1β (partial = 0.22, ) levels after adjusting for plasma homocysteine and other potential confounders. Plasma homocysteine displayed no significant correlations with any inflammatory markers. Vitamin B-6 status, rather than homocysteine, appeared to be a significant factor in relation to inflammatory responses for CKD and hemodialysis patients. Cheng-Hsu Chen, En-Ling Yeh, Chih-Chung Chen, Shih-Chien Huang, and Yi-Chia Huang Copyright © 2017 Cheng-Hsu Chen et al. All rights reserved. XRRA1 Targets ATM/CHK1/2-Mediated DNA Repair in Colorectal Cancer Tue, 26 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 X-ray radiation resistance associated 1 (XRRA1) has been found to regulate the response of human tumor and normal cells to X-radiation (XR). Although XRRA1 overexpression is known to be involved in cancer cell response to XR, there are no reports about whether the expression of XRRA1 in tumors can adjust radioresistance. It is widely known that cell cycle arrest could cause radioresistance. We found that blocked XRRA1 expression could lead to cell cycle G2/M arrest by the regulation of cyclin A, cyclin E, and p21 proteins in colorectal cancer (CRC) and expression of XRRA1 reduced cell cycle arrest and increased cell proliferation in CRC. However, whether regulation of the cell cycle by XRRA1 can influence radioresistance is poorly characterized. Correspondingly, DNA repair can effectively lead to radioresistance. In our study, when cancer cells were exposed to drugs and ionizing radiation, low expression of XRRA1 could increase the phosphorylation of DNA repair pathway factors CHK1, CHK2, and ATM and reduce the expression of γ-H2AX, which is believed to participate in DNA repair in the nucleus. Crucially, our results identify a novel link between XRRA1 and the ATM/CHK1/2 pathway and suggest that XRRA1 is involved in a DNA damage response that drives radio- and chemoresistance by regulating the ATM/CHK1/2 pathway. Wenjun Wang, Minzhang Guo, Xiaojun Xia, Chao Zhang, Yuan Zeng, and Sipei Wu Copyright © 2017 Wenjun Wang et al. All rights reserved. Polysaccharides from Trichosanthes Fructus via Ultrasound-Assisted Enzymatic Extraction Using Response Surface Methodology Mon, 25 Sep 2017 10:08:05 +0000 An efficient procedure for ultrasound-assisted enzymatic extraction of crude polysaccharides from Trichosanthes Fructus (crude TFP) using response surface methodology (RSM) was developed. The Box–Behnken design was applied to optimize the effects of pH (), enzyme amount (), extraction temperature (), and liquid-to-solid ratio () on the extraction. The statistical analysis indicated that the independent variables (,, and ), the quadratic coefficients (,,, and ), and the interaction coefficient () had significant impact on the yield of crude TFP. The optimal conditions were determined as follows: pH 4.5, enzyme amount 5000 u/g, extraction temperature 45°C, and liquid-to-solid ratio 30 ml/g. The experimental yield of crude TFP was 6.58%, which was very close to the predicted yield of 6.71%. TFPI was then purified and characterized with Sephadex G-100 column, UV-Vis, GPC, and FT-IR. The average molecular weight of TFPI was calculated to be 1.49 × 105 Da. TFPI exhibited strong reducing power and possessed not only remarkable scavenging activities against ABTS•+ and DPPH radicals, but also high antitumor activities in C4-2, DU145, and PC3 cells. The results suggest that Trichosanthes Fructus and TFPI could be a novel potent natural medicine with antioxidant and antitumor activities. Fujia Chen, Dahong Li, Hongqi Shen, Chunhong Wang, Enzhong Li, Huihui Xing, Li Guo, Qingchun Zhao, Junhao Shi, Hoang Nguyen, and Jiayang Liu Copyright © 2017 Fujia Chen et al. All rights reserved. Morphometric Analysis and Classification of the Cross-Sectional Shape of the C2 Lamina Mon, 25 Sep 2017 08:57:51 +0000 A thorough understanding of the morphology of the lamina of the second cervical vertebra (C2) is important for safe C2 translaminar screw placement. Although anatomical characteristics of the C2 lamina have been widely documented, individual differences in morphology have not been addressed. The aim of this study was to morphometrically analyze the cross-sectional shape of the C2 lamina and classify the shape to describe individual differences. Morphometric analysis was conducted on 145 three-dimensional C2 models based on computerized tomography images from Korean adult cadavers. Several parameters were measured on a cross-section image of the lamina model. Based on numerical criteria, all of the C2 lamina’s cross-sectional shapes could be categorized into three distinctive morphological types: pyriform, ellipse, and obpyriform shapes. We confirmed that most Koreans can accommodate C2 translaminar screw placement with a lower limit of the 95% confidence interval of thickness measured at 6.26 mm. Morphometric analysis suggested that the obpyriform-shaped lamina (4.48%) is likely to require screw trajectory adjustment to avoid cortical breakout of the screw. Our results will enhance current anatomical understanding of the C2 lamina and thus facilitate safer C2 translaminar screw placement. Soyeon Kim, Dai-Soon Kwak, and In-Beom Kim Copyright © 2017 Soyeon Kim et al. All rights reserved. Susceptibility of In Vitro Melanoma Skin Cancer to Photoactivated Hypericin versus Aluminium(III) Phthalocyanine Chloride Tetrasulphonate Mon, 25 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 The sensitivity of human melanoma cells to photoactivated Hypericin (Hyp) compared to aluminium(III) phthalocyanine chloride tetrasulphonate (AlPcS4Cl) is reported in this study. Melanoma cells (A375 cell line) were treated with various concentrations of Hyp or AlPcS4Cl alone, for 1, 4, and 24 hrs; varying doses of laser irradiation alone (594 or 682 nm); or optimal concentrations of PSs combined with laser irradiation. Changes in cell morphology, viability, membrane integrity, and proliferation after treatment of cells were determined using inverted microscopy, Trypan blue cell exclusion, Lactate Dehydrogenase (LDH) membrane integrity, and adenosine triphosphate (ATP) cell proliferation assay, respectively. More than 60% of cell survival was observed when cells were treated with 2.5 μM of Hyp or AlPcS4Cl alone at all incubation times or with 5 J/cm2 of 594 or 682 nm laser alone. Combination of PSs and respective lasers leads to a statistically significant incubation time-dependent decrease in survival of cells. Flow cytometry using the FITC Annexin V/PI apoptosis kit demonstrated that cell death induced after Hyp-PDT is via early and late apoptosis whereas early apoptosis was the main mechanism observed with AlPcS4Cl-PDT. Hyp-PDT compared to AlPcS4Cl-PDT is indicated to be a more effective cancer cell death inducer in melanoma cells. I. M. Ndhundhuma and H. Abrahamse Copyright © 2017 I. M. Ndhundhuma and H. Abrahamse. All rights reserved. Prevalence and Relevance of Pruritus in Pregnancy Mon, 25 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Pregnant women are at greater risk to suffer from chronic pruritus, but data on this symptom in this group is very limited. The aim of this study was to investigate the prevalence, clinical characteristics, and the importance of pruritus in pregnant women. A total of 292 consecutive pregnant women at the weeks of gestation (WoG) were recruited into this prospective, cross-sectional study. All patients underwent thorough anamnesis and detailed physical examination with the special emphasis on pruritus. Pruritus was assessed according to Visual Analogue Scale (VAS). Quality of life was measured with the Dermatology Life Quality Index (DLQI). The point prevalence of pruritus was 20.2% (), while pruritus prevalence during the entire pregnancy was 38.0% (). Pruritus started on average at the WoG; it was significantly more common among women in third trimester. The mean VAS was 4.8 (±2.4) points. The DLQI scoring significantly correlated with VAS (, ). Based on the results of our study about one-third of women suffer from pruritus during pregnancy. Many of them find it a very distressing and disturbing symptom. Justyna Szczęch, Artur Wiatrowski, Lidia Hirnle, and Adam Reich Copyright © 2017 Justyna Szczęch et al. All rights reserved. Knockdown of SIRT1 Suppresses Bladder Cancer Cell Proliferation and Migration and Induces Cell Cycle Arrest and Antioxidant Response through FOXO3a-Mediated Pathways Mon, 25 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Bladder cancer (BCa) is one of the most common tumors, but its underlying mechanism has not been fully clarified. Our transcriptome analysis suggested a close link of Sirtuins, Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor (PPAR), cell cycle regulation, reactive oxygen species (ROS) metabolism, and Forkhead Box Class O (FOXO) signaling pathway in BCa. SIRT1 is a key member of Sirtuins, playing important roles in aging and energy metabolism, which has been reported to be involved in various metabolic diseases and tumors. We observed that SIRT1 was upregulated in BCa tissues at both mRNA and protein levels. By establishing a SIRT1-knockdown BCa cell model, our results suggested that proliferation and viability were suppressed. Moreover, migration rate was inhibited as well, possibly via reduction of epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT). In addition, cell cycle arrest was significantly induced, consisting with strongly decreased proteins involved (CDK2/4/6). Furthermore, ROS production was slightly reduced, accompanied by increasing of antioxidant enzymes and total/acetylated FOXO3a. Consistently with our Path-net analysis, we observed no significant alteration of apoptosis in the SIRT1-knockdown BCa cells. Taken together, our results suggested that SIRT1 deficiency in BCa cells could suppress cell viability by activating antioxidant response and inducing cell cycle arrest possibly via FOXO3a-related pathways. Qingxuan Hu, Gang Wang, Jianping Peng, Guofeng Qian, Wei Jiang, Conghua Xie, Yu Xiao, and Xinghuan Wang Copyright © 2017 Qingxuan Hu et al. All rights reserved. Identification of Potent Chloride Intracellular Channel Protein 1 Inhibitors from Traditional Chinese Medicine through Structure-Based Virtual Screening and Molecular Dynamics Analysis Mon, 25 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Chloride intracellular channel 1 (CLIC1) is involved in the development of most aggressive human tumors, including gastric, colon, lung, liver, and glioblastoma cancers. It has become an attractive new therapeutic target for several types of cancer. In this work, we aim to identify natural products as potent CLIC1 inhibitors from Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) database using structure-based virtual screening and molecular dynamics (MD) simulation. First, structure-based docking was employed to screen the refined TCM database and the top 500 TCM compounds were obtained and reranked by -Score. Then, 30 potent hits were achieved from the top 500 TCM compounds using cluster and ligand-protein interaction analysis. Finally, MD simulation was employed to validate the stability of interactions between each hit and CLIC1 protein from docking simulation, and Molecular Mechanics/Generalized Born Surface Area (MM-GBSA) analysis was used to refine the virtual hits. Six TCM compounds with top MM-GBSA scores and ideal-binding models were confirmed as the final hits. Our study provides information about the interaction between TCM compounds and CLIC1 protein, which may be helpful for further experimental investigations. In addition, the top 6 natural products structural scaffolds could serve as building blocks in designing drug-like molecules for CLIC1 inhibition. Wei Wang, Minghui Wan, Dongjiang Liao, Guilin Peng, Xin Xu, Weiqiang Yin, Guixin Guo, Funeng Jiang, Weide Zhong, and Jianxing He Copyright © 2017 Wei Wang et al. All rights reserved. Magnetic Resonance Colonography May Predict the Need for Bowel Resection in Colorectal Endometriosis Mon, 25 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Purpose. To define if MRI findings in patients with deep pelvic endometriosis (DPE) may be predictive for the need of bowel resection. Material and Methods. A retrospective survey of 196 pelvic MRIs of women who received laparoscopic procedures for DPE was carried out. A pelvic MRI was performed in all patients: it consisted in T2w-TSE sequences in axial, sagittal, and coronal planes and T1w and THRIVE sequences in the axial plane; the exam was completed by MR-Colonography. Intestinal lesions were measured in short and long axis and the degree of stenosis was established. A multivariate logistic regression was used to identify the predictors of intestinal resection. Results. 57/196 patients received an intestinal resection. Multivariate logistic regression demonstrated a predictive value of short axis (Odds-Ratio = 2.29, ) and stenosis (Odds-Ratio = 1.20, ). ROC analysis showed that a cut-off value of 11 mm for the short axis and 30% for the stenosis may correctly classify, respectively, 96,94% (sensitivity 92,9% and specificity 98,56%) and 97,96% (sensitivity 94,74% and specificity 99,3%) of the cases. Conclusion. The presence of an endometriotic rectal nodule > 11 mm in short axis causing a stenosis > 30% in pelvic MRI reliably predicts the need of a rectal resection. Arnaldo Scardapane, Filomenamila Lorusso, Mariantonietta Francavilla, Stefano Bettocchi, Fabiana Divina Fascilla, Giuseppe Angelelli, and Marco Scioscia Copyright © 2017 Arnaldo Scardapane et al. All rights reserved. Can the Weight of an External Breast Prosthesis Influence Trunk Biomechanics during Functional Movement in Postmastectomy Women? Sun, 24 Sep 2017 09:36:56 +0000 Introduction. Recent papers indicate that one-side mastectomy can produce deleterious effects on the posture and musculoskeletal system. This study was conducted to better understand the underlying mechanisms involved in trunk motion in external prosthesis users. Objective. The aim was to evaluate the changes in surface electromyographic (SEMG) activity of the erector spinae muscles (ES) in postmastectomy women with and without breast prostheses during functional body movement tests. Methods. In 51 one-side postmastectomy women the SEMG muscle activity of bilateral ES was measured during symmetrical and asymmetrical dynamic activities in a counterbalanced manner with different weights of the breast prosthesis. Range-of-motion measurements were taken for forward bending, backward bending, lateral bending, and rotation. Results. The mean level of the ES activity in the lumbar region was not affected by the weight of the external breast prosthesis during most of the functional body tests (). The activity of ES during functional body tests with and without different external breast prostheses did not differ between the two sides of the trunk (mastectomy and nonmastectomy) for most of the movement tests (). Conclusion. The lumbar ES activity during functional tests is not associated with the weight of the external breast prosthesis in postmastectomy women. Katarzyna Hojan and Faustyna Manikowska Copyright © 2017 Katarzyna Hojan and Faustyna Manikowska. All rights reserved. Effectiveness of a Lytic Phage SRG1 against Vancomycin-Resistant Enterococcus faecalis in Compost and Soil Sun, 24 Sep 2017 08:46:34 +0000 Nosocomial infections caused by vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus have become a major problem. Bacteriophage therapy is proposed as a potential alternative therapy. Bacteriophages are viruses that infect bacteria and are ubiquitous in nature. Lytic bacteriophage was isolated from sewage water that infects VREF, the causative agent of endocarditis, bacteraemia, and urinary tract infections (UTIs). The phage produced clear plaques with unique clear morphology and well-defined boundaries. TEM results of phage revealed it to be  nm long and  nm wide. The characterization of bacteriophage revealed that infection process of phage was calcium and magnesium dependent and phage titers were highest under optimum conditions for VREF, with an optimal temperature range of 37–50°C. The maximum growth was observed at 37°C, hence having 100% viability. The latent period for phage was small with a burst size of 512 viral particles per bacterial cell. The phage was tested against various clinical strains and results proved it to be host specific. It can be used as a potential therapeutic agent for VREF infections. The phage efficiently eradicated VREF inoculated in cattle compost, poultry compost, and a soil sample which makes it a potential agent for clearing compost and soil sample. Sidra Rahmat Ullah, Saadia Andleeb, Taskeen Raza, Muhsin Jamal, and Khalid Mehmood Copyright © 2017 Sidra Rahmat Ullah et al. All rights reserved. Retracted: Study of Effect of Salvianolic Acid B on Motor Function Recovery in Rats with Spinal Cord Injury Sun, 24 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 BioMed Research International Copyright © 2017 BioMed Research International. All rights reserved. Mitochondria Associated MicroRNA Expression Profiling of Heart Failure Sun, 24 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Heart failure (HF) is associated with mitochondrial dysfunction and energy metabolism impairment. MicroRNAs are implicated in the development of heart failure. However, the mitochondria enriched microRNA during heart failure remains elusive. Here, we generated a pressure overload-induced early and late stage heart failure model at 4 weeks and 8 weeks following transverse aortic constriction (TAC) in mice. We found that expression of mitochondrion protein COX4 was highly enriched in isolated mitochondria from cardiac tissues while GAPDH could hardly be detected. Furthermore, small RNA sequencing for mitochondria RNAs from failing hearts was performed. It was found that 69 microRNAs were upregulated and 2 were downregulated in early heart failure, while 16 microRNAs were upregulated and 6 were downregulated in late heart failure. 15 microRNA candidates were measured in both mitochondria and total cardiac tissues of heart failure by real-time PCR. MiR-696, miR-532, miR-690, and miR-345-3p were enriched in mitochondria from the failing heart at early stage. Bioinformatics analysis showed that mitochondria enriched microRNAs in HF were associated with energy metabolism and oxidative stress pathway. For the first time, we demonstrated microRNAs were enriched in mitochondria during heart failure, which established a link between microRNA and mitochondrion in heart failure. Xiaoxia Wang, Chun Song, Xiao Zhou, Xiaorui Han, Jun Li, Zengwu Wang, Haibao Shang, Yuli Liu, and Huiqing Cao Copyright © 2017 Xiaoxia Wang et al. All rights reserved. Analytical Validation of a New Enzymatic and Automatable Method for d-Xylose Measurement in Human Urine Samples Sun, 24 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Hypolactasia, or intestinal lactase deficiency, affects more than half of the world population. Currently, xylose quantification in urine after gaxilose oral administration for the noninvasive diagnosis of hypolactasia is performed with the hand-operated nonautomatable phloroglucinol reaction. This work demonstrates that a new enzymatic xylose quantification method, based on the activity of xylose dehydrogenase from Caulobacter crescentus, represents an excellent alternative to the manual phloroglucinol reaction. The new method is automatable and facilitates the use of the gaxilose test for hypolactasia diagnosis in the clinical practice. The analytical validation of the new technique was performed in three different autoanalyzers, using buffer or urine samples spiked with different xylose concentrations. For the comparison between the phloroglucinol and the enzymatic assays, 224 urine samples of patients to whom the gaxilose test had been prescribed were assayed by both methods. A mean bias of −16.08 mg of xylose was observed when comparing the results obtained by both techniques. After adjusting the cut-off of the enzymatic method to 19.18 mg of xylose, the Kappa coefficient was found to be 0.9531, indicating an excellent level of agreement between both analytical procedures. This new assay represents the first automatable enzymatic technique validated for xylose quantification in urine. Israel Sánchez-Moreno, Carmen Monsalve-Hernando, Ana Godino, Luis Illa, María Jesús Gaspar, Guillermo Manuel Muñoz, Ana Díaz, José Luis Martín, Eduardo García-Junceda, Alfonso Fernández-Mayoralas, and Carmen Hermida Copyright © 2017 Israel Sánchez-Moreno et al. All rights reserved. Health Status and the Demand for Healthcare among the Elderly in the Rural Quoc-Oai District of Hanoi in Vietnam Sun, 24 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Background. Vietnam is experiencing an unprecedented demographic transition. Its proportion of elderly people is growing rapidly. Objective. This study explored the health status and health-related quality of life (HRQoL) of rural elderly Vietnamese and assessed their needs for healthcare services. Design. This study used a survey with stratified proportion sampling and quota assignment. In 2016, data was collected from 713 people in the rural Quoc-Oai district of Hanoi aged 60 or older. Results. The mean age of the respondents was 70.9. Both self-rated health status and functional status decreased with age. Women reported more functional limitations than men. Musculoskeletal disorders were the most frequently reported chronic diseases, followed by hypertension, gastrointestinal diseases, and cardiovascular diseases. Age, self-rated health status, BMIs, and the number of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) were found to be significant determinants of HRQoL, after controlling for socioeconomic effects. More than half the respondents requested more healthcare information, particularly on disease management. Conclusions. Vietnam’s healthcare system is being challenged to make health services easily accessible and meet the growing needs for chronic illness management, risk reduction, promoting healthy lifestyles, and improving the aging population’s quality of life. Kyung-Sook Bang, Sunghee H. Tak, Juhwan Oh, Jinseon Yi, Soo-Young Yu, and Truong Quang Trung Copyright © 2017 Kyung-Sook Bang et al. All rights reserved. An EEG Tool for Monitoring Patient Engagement during Stroke Rehabilitation: A Feasibility Study Sun, 24 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Objective. Patient engagement is of major significance in neural rehabilitation. We developed a real-time EEG marker for attention, the Brain Engagement Index (BEI). In this work we investigate the relation between the BEI and temporary functional change during a rehabilitation session. Methods. First part: 13 unimpaired controls underwent BEI monitoring during motor exercise of varying levels of difficulty. Second part: 18 subacute stroke patients underwent standard motor rehabilitation with and without use of real-time BEI feedback regarding their level of engagement. Single-session temporary functional changes were evaluated based on videos taken before and after training on a given task. Two assessors, blinded to feedback use, assessed the change following single-session treatments. Results. First part: a relation between difficulty of exercise and BEI was identified. Second part: temporary functional change was associated with BEI level regardless of the use of feedback. Conclusions. This study provides preliminary evidence that when BEI is higher, the temporary functional change induced by the treatment session is better. Further work is required to expand this preliminary study and to evaluate whether such temporary functional change can be harnessed to improve clinical outcome. Clinical Trial Registration. Registered with, unique identifier: NCT02603718 (retrospectively registered 10/14/2015). Gadi Bartur, Katherin Joubran, Sara Peleg-Shani, Jean-Jacques Vatine, and Goded Shahaf Copyright © 2017 Gadi Bartur et al. All rights reserved. Corrigendum to “Chitosan Prevents Gentamicin-Induced Nephrotoxicity via a Carbonyl Stress-Dependent Pathway” Sun, 24 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Chu-Kuang Chou, Yi-Chieh Li, Shih-Ming Chen, Yi-Min Shih, and Jen-Ai Lee Copyright © 2017 Chu-Kuang Chou et al. All rights reserved. Comparison of the Feasibility and Safety of First- versus Second-Generation AMPLATZER™ Occluders for Left Atrial Appendage Closure Wed, 20 Sep 2017 07:05:59 +0000 Introduction. Left atrial appendage closure (LAAC) is considered an alternative to oral anticoagulation therapy in patients with atrial fibrillation (AF). The aim of this study was to compare the safety and efficacy of the first- and second-generation AMPLATZER Devices for LAAC, AMPLATZER Cardiac Plug (ACP) versus AMPLATZER Amulet™. Methods. Procedural data, such as fluoroscopy time, radiation dose, and contrast-dye, as well as VARC criteria and major adverse events (MAEs) were assessed for both devices. The rate of peridevice leaks was analyzed at echocardiographic follow-up. Results. A total of 196 patients with AF underwent LAAC with the ACP () or Amulet device (). The use of Amulet was associated with significantly lower fluoroscopy time (14.8 ± 7.4 min versus 10.6 ± 4.1 min; ), lower radiation dose (4833 ± 3360 cGycm2 versus 3206 ± 2169 cGycm2; ), and reduced amount of contrast-dye (150.2 ± 83.9 ml versus 128.8 ± 46.0 ml; ). Furthermore, LAAC with Amulet devices resulted in lower device-resizing rates (3 versus 16 cases; ). Peridevice leaks were less frequent in the Amulet group (12 versus 4; ). MAE occurred in 6 ACP and 4 Amulet patients (). Conclusions. The Amulet device is associated with shorter fluoroscopy times and radiation dosages, reduced use of contrast-dye, lower recapture rates, and less peridevice leaks as compared to the ACP. Baravan Al-Kassou and Heyder Omran Copyright © 2017 Baravan Al-Kassou and Heyder Omran. All rights reserved. Home Remodeling and Food Allergy Interact Synergistically to Increase the Risk of Atopic Dermatitis Wed, 20 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Purpose. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of home remodeling and food allergy (FA) on the development of atopic dermatitis (AD) in children. Methods. The Modified International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood questionnaire was used to survey 4,111 children recruited from 3 kindergartens and 6 elementary schools from Seongnam, Korea. Participants’ parents agreed for them to participate in physical examinations, skin prick tests, and blood tests. Results. Home remodeling in the past 12 months (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] 3.40, ), lifetime diagnosis of FA (aOR 3.95, ), parental history of AD (aOR 2.67, ), and FA (aOR 2.35, ) were independent risk factors for lifetime diagnosis of AD ever. When history of home remodeling and FA were combined, the risk for moderate-to-severe AD by scoring atopic dermatitis (SCORAD) score increased (aOR, 7.19, , P for interaction = 0.034). Conclusion. Home remodeling, lifetime diagnosis of FA, parental history of AD, and parental history of FA were independent risk factors for AD. In addition, we observed a synergistic interaction between home remodeling and FA in the risk of moderate-to-severe AD. Won Seok Lee, Kyung Suk Lee, Shinhae Lee, Myongsoon Sung, Seung-Jin Lee, Hye Mi Jee, Youn Ho Sheen, Man Yong Han, and Young-Ho Jung Copyright © 2017 Won Seok Lee et al. All rights reserved. Comment on “Ebola Virus Infection among Western Healthcare Workers Unable to Recall the Transmission Route” Wed, 20 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Mark G. Kortepeter, Theodore J. Cieslak, Elena H. Kwon, Philip W. Smith, Christopher J. Kratochvil, and Angela L. Hewlett Copyright © 2017 Mark G. Kortepeter et al. All rights reserved. Differentiation of Human Amniotic Mesenchymal Stem Cells into Human Anterior Cruciate Ligament Fibroblast Cells by In Vitro Coculture Wed, 20 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Anterior cruciate ligament injuries are common in humans, though cellular components of the knee have little regenerative or proliferation potential. This study investigated the differentiation of human amnion-derived mesenchymal stem cells (hAMSCs) into human anterior cruciate ligament fibroblasts (hACLFs) in vitro through induction with bFGF and TGF-β1 with coculture systems. Groups A and B comprised hAMSCs at the 3rd passage cultured with and without bFGF and TGF-β1, respectively; Groups C and D consisted of hAMSCs and hACLFs in monolayer coculture with and without bFGF and TGF-β1, respectively; Groups E and F were composed of hAMSCs and hACLFs in Transwell coculture with and without bFGF and TGF-β1, respectively. Cell morphology and proliferation were recorded. Protein expression and relative mRNA expression were evaluated in each group. Cell proliferation was significantly higher in the induced groups than in the noninduced groups. Protein expression increased over time with the highest expression observed in Group E. mRNA levels were significantly higher in Group E than in other groups. This study is the first to demonstrate the use of the Transwell coculture system for this purpose, and hAMSCs were successfully differentiated into hACLFs. Thus, hAMSCs may be a superior choice for hACLF differentiation via Transwell coculture. Yuwan Li, Ziming Liu, Ying Jin, Xizhong Zhu, Shengmin Wang, Jibin Yang, Youliang Ren, Qiang Fu, Huazhang Xiong, Gang Zou, and Yi Liu Copyright © 2017 Yuwan Li et al. All rights reserved. Corrigendum to “Nicotine Enhances Interspecies Relationship between Streptococcus mutans and Candida albicans” Wed, 20 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Shiyu Liu, Wei Qiu, Keke Zhang, Xuedong Zhou, Biao Ren, Jinzhi He, Xin Xu, Lei Cheng, and Mingyun Li Copyright © 2017 Shiyu Liu et al. All rights reserved. Angelica sinensis Suppresses Body Weight Gain and Alters Expression of the FTO Gene in High-Fat-Diet Induced Obese Mice Wed, 20 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 The root of Angelica sinensis (RAS) is a traditional Chinese medicine used for preventing and treating various diseases. In this study, we assessed RAS supplementation effects on body weight and the FTO gene expression and methylation status in a high-fat-diet (HFD) induced obese mouse model. Female obese mice were divided into groups according to RAS dosage in diet as follows: normal diet, HFD diet (HC), HFD with low-dosage RAS (DL), HFD with medium-dosage RAS (DM), and HFD with high-dosage RAS (DH). After RAS supplementation for 4 weeks, body weight suppression and FTO expression in DH mice were significantly higher than in HC mice, whereas no significant change in FTO expression was detected between DM and DL mice or in their offspring. Bisulfite sequencing PCR (BSP) revealed that the CpG island in the FTO promoter was hypermethylated up to 95.44% in the HC group, 91.67% in the DH group, and 90.00% in the normal diet group. Histological examination showed that adipocytes in the DH group were smaller than those in the HC group, indicating a potential role of RAS in obesity. This study indicated that RAS could ameliorate obesity induced by HFD and that the molecular mechanism might be associated with the expression of the FTO gene. Tao Zhong, Xiao-Yue Duan, Hao Zhang, Li Li, Hong-Ping Zhang, and Lili Niu Copyright © 2017 Tao Zhong et al. All rights reserved. Effectiveness of Therapeutic Exercise in Fibromyalgia Syndrome: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Clinical Trials Wed, 20 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Objective. The aim of this study was to summarize evidence on the effectiveness of therapeutic exercise in Fibromyalgia Syndrome. Design. Studies retrieved from the Cochrane Plus, PEDro, and Pubmed databases were systematically reviewed. Randomized controlled trials and meta-analyses involving adults with fibromyalgia were included. The primary outcomes considered in this systematic review were pain, global well-being, symptoms of depression, and health-related quality of life. Results. Effects were summarized using standardized mean differences with 95% confidence intervals using a random effects model. This study provides strong evidence that physical exercise reduces pain (−1.11 [95% CI] −1.52; −0.71; overall effect ), global well-being (−0.67 [95% CI] −0.89, −0.45; ), and symptoms of depression (−0.40 [95% CI] −0.55, −0.24; ) and that it improves both components of health-related quality of life (physical: 0.77 [95% CI] 0.47; 1.08; ; mental: 0.49 [95% CI] 0.27; 0.71; ). Conclusions. This study concludes that aerobic and muscle strengthening exercises are the most effective way of reducing pain and improving global well-being in people with fibromyalgia and that stretching and aerobic exercises increase health-related quality of life. In addition, combined exercise produces the biggest beneficial effect on symptoms of depression. M. Dolores Sosa-Reina, Susana Nunez-Nagy, Tomás Gallego-Izquierdo, Daniel Pecos-Martín, Jorge Monserrat, and Melchor Álvarez-Mon Copyright © 2017 M. Dolores Sosa-Reina et al. All rights reserved. The Proangiogenic Capabilities of Malignant Ascites Generated by Aggressive Ovarian Tumors Wed, 20 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Here we examined whether malignant ascites may determine ovarian tumor angiogenesis, and if so whether ascites generated by highly aggressive serous and undifferentiated cancers are more proangiogenic than those from less aggressive clear cell and endometrioid tumors. Angiogenesis was analyzed according to expression of CD31, CD34, and connexin 43. Proliferation and migration of endothelial cells were tested using fluorescence-based methods. The quantification of angiogenic agents and hypoxia-inducible factor 1α (HIF-1α) was performed using specific immunoassays. Results showed that the expression of CD31 and CD34 in serous and undifferentiated tumors was greater, whereas endothelial expression of connexin 43 was lower than in clear cell and endometrioid lesions. Serous cancers that formed in the presence of ascites displayed increased expression of connexin 43 in vascular smooth muscles as compared with tumors developed in the fluid’s absence. Endothelial cells exposed to ascites from serous and undifferentiated tumors proliferated and migrated more vigorously than cells subjected to ascites from clear cell and endometrioid cancers. They also exhibited an increased level of HIF-1α and produced increased amounts of multiple proangiogenic agents. Our results indicate that high vascularization of aggressive ovarian tumors may be associated with profound angiogenic capabilities of ascites generated by these tumors. Justyna Mikuła-Pietrasik, Paweł Uruski, Sebastian Szubert, Konstantin Maksin, Rafał Moszyński, Dariusz Szpurek, Aldona Woźniak, Stefan Sajdak, Andrzej Tykarski, and Krzysztof Książek Copyright © 2017 Justyna Mikuła-Pietrasik et al. All rights reserved. Andrographolide Promotes Neural Differentiation of Rat Adipose Tissue-Derived Stromal Cells through Wnt/β-Catenin Signaling Pathway Wed, 20 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Adipose tissue-derived stromal cells (ADSCs) are a high-yield source of pluripotent stem cells for use in cell-based therapies. We explored the effect of andrographolide (ANDRO, one of the ingredients of the medicinal herb extract) on the neural differentiation of rat ADSCs and associated molecular mechanisms. We observed that rat ADSCs were small and spindle-shaped and expressed multiple stem cell markers including nestin. They were multipotent as evidenced by adipogenic, osteogenic, chondrogenic, and neural differentiation under appropriate conditions. The proportion of cells exhibiting neural-like morphology was higher, and neurites developed faster in the ANDRO group than in the control group in the same neural differentiation medium. Expression levels of the neural lineage markers MAP2, tau, GFAP, and β-tubulin III were higher in the ANDRO group. ANDRO induced a concentration-dependent increase in Wnt/β-catenin signaling as evidenced by the enhanced expression of nuclear β-catenin and the inhibited form of GSK-3β (pSer9). Thus, this study shows for the first time how by enhancing the neural differentiation of ADSCs we expect that ANDRO pretreatment may increase the efficacy of adult stem cell transplantation in nervous system diseases, but more exploration is needed. Yan Liang, Miao Li, Tao Lu, Wang Peng, and Jian-Huang Wu Copyright © 2017 Yan Liang et al. All rights reserved. Improving Prediction Accuracy of “Central Line-Associated Blood Stream Infections” Using Data Mining Models Wed, 20 Sep 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Prediction of nosocomial infections among patients is an important part of clinical surveillance programs to enable the related personnel to take preventive actions in advance. Designing a clinical surveillance program with capability of predicting nosocomial infections is a challenging task due to several reasons, including high dimensionality of medical data, heterogenous data representation, and special knowledge required to extract patterns for prediction. In this paper, we present details of six data mining methods implemented using cross industry standard process for data mining to predict central line-associated blood stream infections. For our study, we selected datasets of healthcare-associated infections from US National Healthcare Safety Network and consumer survey data from Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems. Our experiments show that central line-associated blood stream infections (CLABSIs) can be successfully predicted using AdaBoost method with an accuracy up to 89.7%. This will help in implementing effective clinical surveillance programs for infection control, as well as improving the accuracy detection of CLABSIs. Also, this reduces patients’ hospital stay cost and maintains patients’ safety. Amin Y. Noaman, Farrukh Nadeem, Abdul Hamid M. Ragab, Arwa Jamjoom, Nabeela Al-Abdullah, Mahreen Nasir, and Anser G. Ali Copyright © 2017 Amin Y. Noaman et al. All rights reserved. Sterilization of Biofilm on a Titanium Surface Using a Combination of Nonthermal Plasma and Chlorhexidine Digluconate Tue, 19 Sep 2017 09:31:11 +0000 Nosocomial infections caused by opportunistic bacteria pose major healthcare problem worldwide. Out of the many microorganisms responsible for such infections, Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a ubiquitous bacterium that accounts for 10–20% of hospital-acquired infections. These infections have mortality rates ranging from 18 to 60% and the cost of treatment ranges from $20,000 to $80,000 per infection. The formation of biofilms on medical devices and implants is responsible for the majority of those infections. Only limited progress has been made to prevent this issue in a safe and cost-effective manner. To address this, we propose employing jet plasma to break down and inactivate biofilms in vitro. Moreover, to improve the antimicrobial effect on the biofilm, a treatment method using a combination of jet plasma and a biocide known as chlorhexidine (CHX) digluconate was investigated. We found that complete sterilization of P. aeruginosa biofilms can be achieved after combinatorial treatment using plasma and CHX. A decrease in biofilm viability was also observed using confocal laser scanning electron microscopy (CLSM). This treatment method sterilized biofilm-contaminated surfaces in a short treatment time, indicating it to be a potential tool for the removal of biofilms present on medical devices and implants. Tripti Thapa Gupta, Surya B. Karki, Jyl S. Matson, Daniel J. Gehling, and Halim Ayan Copyright © 2017 Tripti Thapa Gupta et al. All rights reserved. Profiling microRNA from Brain by Microarray in a Transgenic Mouse Model of Alzheimer’s Disease Tue, 19 Sep 2017 08:42:05 +0000 MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small noncoding RNAs, which regulate numerous cell functions by targeting mRNA for cleavage or translational repression, and have been found to play an important role in Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Our study aimed to identify differentially expressed miRNAs in AD brain as a reference of potential therapeutic miRNAs or biomarkers for this disease. We used amyloid precursor protein (APP) and presenilin 1 (PS1) double transgenic mice and age-matched wild-type (WT) littermates to determine the expression of miRNAs in the brain. MiRNAs were profiled by microarray, and differentially expressed miRNAs underwent target prediction and enrichment analysis. Microarray analysis revealed 56 differentially expressed miRNAs in AD mouse brain, which involved 39 miRNAs that were significantly upregulated and 19 that were downregulated at different ages. Among those miRNAs, a total of 11 miRNAs, including miR-342-3p, miR-342-5p, miR-376c-3p, and miR-301b-3p, were not only conserved in human but also predicted to have targets and signaling pathways closely related to the pathology of AD. In conclusion, in this study, differentially expressed miRNAs were identified in AD brain and proposed as biomarkers, which may have the potential to indicate AD progression. Despite being preliminary, these results may aid in investigating pathological hallmarks and identify effective therapeutic targets. Lin-lin Wang, Li Min, Qing-dong Guo, Jun-xia Zhang, Hai-lun Jiang, Shuai Shao, Jian-guo Xing, Lin-lin Yin, Jiang-hong Liu, Rui Liu, and Shui-long Guo Copyright © 2017 Lin-lin Wang et al. All rights reserved. Gastrointestinal Motility, Mucosal Mast Cell, and Intestinal Histology in Rats: Effect of Prednisone Tue, 19 Sep 2017 08:38:12 +0000 Our aim was to verify the effects of prednisone related to gastrointestinal motility, intestinal histology, and mucosal mast cells in rats. Two-month-old male Wistar rats were randomly assigned to control group (vehicle) animals receiving saline 0.9% () or treated orally with 0.625 mg/kg/day of prednisone () or 2.5 mg/kg/day of prednisone () during 15 days. Mast cells and other histologic analyses were performed in order to correlate to gastric emptying, cecum arrival, and small intestine transit evaluated by Alternating Current Biosusceptometry. Results showed that prednisone in adult rats increased the frequency of gastric contractions, hastened gastric emptying, slowed small intestinal transit, and reduced mucosal mast cells. Histologically, the treatment with both doses of prednisone decreased villus height, whereas longitudinal and circular muscles and crypt depth were not affected. These findings indicate an impairment of intestinal absorption which may be linked to several GI dysfunctions and symptoms. The relationship between gastrointestinal motor disorders and cellular immunity needs to be clarified in experimental studies since prednisone is one of the most prescribed glucocorticoids worldwide. Maysa Bruno de Lima, Loyane Almeida Gama, Andrieli Taise Hauschildt, Denize Jussara Rupolo Dall’Agnol, Luciana Aparecida Corá, and Madileine Francely Americo Copyright © 2017 Maysa Bruno de Lima et al. All rights reserved.