BioMed Research International The latest articles from Hindawi © 2018 , Hindawi Limited . All rights reserved. Time Course of Detection of Human Male DNA from Stained Blood Sample on Various Surfaces by Loop Mediated Isothermal Amplification and Polymerase Chain Reaction Thu, 22 Mar 2018 10:44:37 +0000 This study explores determining the sex of humans from blood stains taken from different surfaces and compares the time course of detection with the conventional PCR, Conventional Loop Mediated Isothermal Amplification (LAMP), and LAMP-Lateral Flow Dipstick (LFD). For the DNA templates, 7 male and 7 female blood stained samples were extracted and added to LAMP and PCR reaction solution to amplify the SRY gene. The DNA samples were extracted from the following blood stained materials: cloth, wood, clay, and tile. Then, the samples were stored at room temperature for 1, 7, 30, and 60 day(s). After the DNA amplification, the gel electrophoresis process was applied to detect LAMP product. The LFD was combined with the LAMP to detect LAMP product on the male cloth samples. For the male samples, the time course of detection on the first and seventh days indicated positive for both LAMP and PCR products on all the surfaces while no DNA amplification was found on any of the female samples. On day 30, positive LAMP product was still found on all the male samples. However, it had faded on the tiles. Moreover, all the male samples, which had tested positive for PCR product, were blurred and unclear. On day 60, LAMP product was still found on all the male samples. Conversely, the PCR method resulted in no bands showing for any of the male samples. However, the LAMP-LFD method detected product on all the male samples of cloth. The results show that the LAMP is an effective, practical, and reliable molecular-biological method. Moreover, the LFD can increase the efficiency and sensitivity of the LAMP, making it more suitable for field studies because gel electrophoresis apparatus is not required. Panan Kanchanaphum Copyright © 2018 Panan Kanchanaphum. All rights reserved. A Clinical Study of Toxication Caused by Carbamazepine Abuse in Adolescents Thu, 22 Mar 2018 08:49:34 +0000 Carbamazepine is known to produce the side effect of euphoria. As such, it lends itself to being a drug of abuse, particularly in the adolescent population. This retrospective study evaluated carbamazepine abuse, treatment course, and associated morbidity in Chinese adolescents. The median dose of carbamazepine resulting in overdose was 2,000 mg (800–5,000). Patients were largely from urban-rural fringe areas (76.47%, 52.94%) with school performance within the last 1/3 range and (52.94%) unsupervised by parents. 35.29% experienced an obvious sense of euphoria. All patients had nervous system symptoms, 6 (35.29%) cases developed coma (GCS < 8), and 5 (29.41%) cases experienced convulsion. Four cases were treated with hemodialysis. The incidence rate in young patients with repeat carbamazepine use and without the supervision of parents was higher than that in first-time users (5/7 versus 4/10), but the difference was not significant. The toxic dose of repeat users was 3428 ± 1035 mg, significantly higher than that of 1470 ± 646 mg in first-time users (). Carbamazepine can produce a sense of euphoria, which is more likely to lead to its abuse and overdose in adolescents. To prevent carbamazepine abuse and overdose will be critical in educating at-risk adolescents and preventing associated morbidities in the future. Wei Xu, Yu-Lin Chen, Ying Zhao, Li-Jie Wang, Jiu-Jun Li, and Chun-Feng Liu Copyright © 2018 Wei Xu et al. All rights reserved. Effects of Afternoon Nap Deprivation on Adult Habitual Nappers’ Inhibition Functions Thu, 22 Mar 2018 08:06:25 +0000 Multiple studies have established the effects of afternoon naps on cognition. However, relatively few studies have investigated the domain of executive functions. Moreover, the effects of napping on inhibition are far from conclusive. The present study employed adult habitual nappers to investigate the effects of afternoon nap deprivation on response-based inhibition assessed by a Go/No-go task and stimulus-based inhibition assessed by a Flanker task and on alertness assessed by a psychomotor vigilance test (PVT) and the Karolinska Sleepiness Scale (KSS). The results showed that afternoon nap deprivation significantly decreased participants’ accuracy and reaction speed for the Go/No-go task but not for the Flanker task. In addition, participants’ alertness was significantly impaired after nap deprivation in terms of increased subjective sleepiness and worse PVT performance. Task-specific effects of napping on inhibition were demonstrated. The implications of the results are discussed. Qingwei Chen, Taotao Ru, Minqi Yang, Pei Yan, Jinghua Li, Ying Yao, Xiaoran Li, and Guofu Zhou Copyright © 2018 Qingwei Chen et al. All rights reserved. JAZF1 Inhibits Adipose Tissue Macrophages and Adipose Tissue Inflammation in Diet-Induced Diabetic Mice Thu, 22 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 Background. Juxtaposed with another zinc finger gene 1 (JAZF1) affects gluconeogenesis, insulin sensitivity, lipid metabolism, and inflammation, but its exact role in chronic inflammation remains unclear. This study aimed to examine JAZF1 overexpression in vivo on adipose tissue macrophages (ATMs). Methods. Mouse models of high-fat diet- (HFD-) induced insulin resistance were induced using C57BL/6J and JAZF1-overexpressing (JAZF1-OX) mice. The mice were randomized (8–10/group) to C57BL/6J mice fed regular diet (RD) (NC group), C57BL/6J mice fed HFD (HF group), JAZF1-OX mice fed RD (NJ group), and JAZF1-OX mice fed HFD (HJ group). Adipose tissue was harvested 12 weeks later. ATMs were evaluated by flow cytometry. Inflammatory markers were evaluated by ELISA. Results. JAZF1-OX mice had lower blood lipids, blood glucose, body weight, fat weight, and inflammatory markers compared with HF mice (all ). JAZF1 overexpression decreased ATM number and secretion of proinflammatory cytokines. JAZF1 overexpression decreased total CD4+ T cells, active T cells, and memory T cells and increased Treg cells. JAZF1 overexpression downregulated IFN-γ and IL-17 levels and upregulated IL-4 levels. JAZF1 overexpression decreased MHCII, CD40, and CD86 in total ATM, CD11c+ ATM, and CD206+ ATM. Conclusions. JAZF1 limits adipose tissue inflammation by limiting macrophage populations and restricting their antigen presentation function. Fanping Meng, Yao Lin, Min Yang, Minyan Li, Gangyi Yang, Po Hao, and Ling Li Copyright © 2018 Fanping Meng et al. All rights reserved. Influence of Material Selection on the Marginal Accuracy of CAD/CAM-Fabricated Metal- and All-Ceramic Single Crown Copings Thu, 22 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 This study evaluated the marginal accuracy of CAD/CAM-fabricated crown copings from four different materials within the same processing route. Twenty stone replicas of a metallic master die (prepared upper premolar) were scanned and divided into two groups. Group 1 was used for a pilot test to determine the design parameters for best marginal accuracy. Group 2 was used to fabricate 10 specimens from the following materials with one identical CAD/CAM system (GAMMA 202, Wissner GmbH, Goettingen, Germany): A = commercially pure (cp) titanium, B = cobalt-chromium alloy, C = yttria-stabilized zirconia (YSZ), and D = leucite-reinforced glass-ceramics. Copings from group 2 were evaluated for the mean marginal gap size (MeanMG) and average maximum marginal gap size (AMaxMG) with a light microscope in the “as-machined” state. The effect of the material on the marginal accuracy was analyzed by multiple pairwise comparisons (Mann–Whitney, -test, , adjusted by Bonferroni-Holmes method). MeanMG values were as follows: A: 46.92 ± 23.12 μm, B: 48.37 ± 29.72 μm, C: 68.25 ± 28.54 μm, and D: 58.73 ± 21.15 μm. The differences in the MeanMG values proved to be significant for groups A/C , A/D , and B/C . AMaxMG values (A: 91.54 ± 23.39 μm, B: 96.86 ± 24.19 μm, C: 120.66 ± 32.75 μm, and D: 100.22 ± 10.83 μm) revealed no significant differences. The material had a significant impact on the marginal accuracy of CAD/CAM-fabricated copings. Matthias Rödiger, Lea Schneider, and Sven Rinke Copyright © 2018 Matthias Rödiger et al. All rights reserved. Aerobic Interval Training Regulated SIRT3 Attenuates High-Fat-Diet-Associated Cognitive Dysfunction Thu, 22 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 Cognitive dysfunction is an important complicated disease in obesity. Exercise ameliorates obesity and the related cognitive dysfunction. However, the underlying mechanism is still unclear. In this study, we investigated whether aerobic interval training (AIT) could attenuate high-fat-diet- (HFD-) associated cognitive dysfunction and the possible mechanism of SIRT3-MnSOD pathway. C57BL/6 wild-type (WT) mice and SIRT3 knockout (KO) mice were randomized into control (Con) or HFD group with or without AIT training for 6 weeks. The spatial learning and memory ability were impaired in HFD group compared to the control group. The levels of mitochondrial protein acetylation were increased in the hippocampus of HFD group. The acetylation level of antioxidative MnSOD was increased as well. As a result, the ROS and MDA levels were significantly increased, which leads to the neuron apoptosis in the hippocampus. SIRT3 deficiency further aggravated HFD-induced cognitive dysfunction and susceptibility to oxidative stress injury. However, AIT upregulated neuron SIRT3 expression and decreased the acetylation of MnSOD. The hippocampus neuron oxidative stress and apoptosis were both decreased compared to untrained HFD group, which finally improved cognitive function of HFD mice. Collectively, AIT attenuates HFD-associated cognitive dysfunction through SIRT3 upregulation and improvement of antioxidative MnSOD activity. Zhaoling Shi, Chen Li, Yue Yin, Zheng Yang, Han Xue, Nan Mu, Yishi Wang, Manling Liu, and Heng Ma Copyright © 2018 Zhaoling Shi et al. All rights reserved. Correlation between Allergic Rhinitis and Laryngopharyngeal Reflux Thu, 22 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 Background and Objectives. Laryngopharyngeal reflux (LPR) exhibits nonspecific clinical presentations, and these symptoms may be associated with other conditions such as allergies, including allergic rhinitis and laryngitis. However, there is a gap in the literature regarding the correlation of laryngopharyngeal reflux with allergic rhinitis/laryngitis. Hence, the aim of this study is to explore the correlation between these two conditions. Patients and Methods. A total of 126 patients with suggestive manifestations of laryngopharyngeal reflux were included in this study. Patients were classified into LPR positive and negative groups based on the results of a 24-hour oropharyngeal pH monitoring system while allergic rhinitis status was assessed with the score for allergic rhinitis (SFAR). The results of the two groups were compared regarding the SFAR score. Correlation between the pH results and SFAR score was explored. Results. The LPR positive group demonstrated significantly higher SFAR scores compared to the negative LPR group . In addition, the Ryan score was significantly correlated with the SFAR total score and its symptomatology-related items (r ranged between 0.35 and 0.5). Conclusion. It seems that laryngopharyngeal reflux increases patients’ self-rating of allergic manifestations. It appears that there is an association between laryngopharyngeal reflux and allergic rhinitis/laryngitis. Sami Alharethy, Abdulsalam Baqays, Tamer A. Mesallam, Falah Syouri, Mawaheb Al Wedami, Turki Aldrees, and Alhanouf AlQabbani Copyright © 2018 Sami Alharethy et al. All rights reserved. Does the Width of the Bony Cochlear Nerve Canal Predict the Outcomes of Cochlear Implantation? Wed, 21 Mar 2018 08:03:17 +0000 A narrow bony cochlear nerve canal (BCNC) is associated with sensorineural hearing loss necessitating cochlear implantation (CI). This study evaluated the implications of BCNC width for post-CI outcomes. A total of 56 children who had received CIs were included. The patients were divided into three groups according to the width of the BCNC (Group 1: diameter < 1.4 mm, ; Group 2: diameter 1.4–2.0 mm, ; Group 3: diameter > 2.0 mm, ). The post-CI speech performances were compared among the three groups according to BCNC width. The correlation between BCNC width and post-CI speech performance was evaluated. Logistic regression analysis was also performed to investigate factors that can impact post-CI speech performance. Cochlear nerve deficiency (CND) occurred more frequently in Group 1. Groups 1 and 2 had significantly worse post-CI outcomes. Patients with intact cochlear nerves had significantly better post-CI outcomes than those with CND. When the cochlear nerve was intact, patients with a narrower BCNC showed less favorable results. Therefore, patients with either a narrow BCNC or CND seemed to have poorer outcomes. A narrow BCNC is associated with higher CND rates and poor outcomes. Measurement of BCNC diameter may help predict CI outcomes. Juyong Chung, Jeong Hun Jang, Sun O Chang, Jae-Jin Song, Sung-Woo Cho, So Young Kim, Jun Ho Lee, and Seung-Ha Oh Copyright © 2018 Juyong Chung et al. All rights reserved. Expression and Regulation Profile of Mature MicroRNA in the Pig: Relevance to Xenotransplantation Wed, 21 Mar 2018 07:53:50 +0000 The pig is an important source of meat production and provides a valuable model for certain human diseases. MicroRNA (miRNA), which is noncoding RNA and regulates gene expression at the posttranscriptional level, plays a critical role in various biological processes. Studies on identification and function of mature miRNAs in multiple pig tissues are increasing, yet the literature is limited. Therefore, we reviewed current research to determine the miRNAs expressed in specific pig tissues that are involved in carcass values (including muscle and adipocytes), reproduction (including pituitary, testis, and ovary), and development of some solid organs (e.g., brain, lung, kidney, and liver). We also discuss the possible regulating mechanisms of miRNA. Finally, as pig organs are suitable candidates for xenotransplantation, biomarkers of their miRNA in xenotransplantation were evaluated. Zongpei Song, David K. C. Cooper, Zhiming Cai, and Lisha Mou Copyright © 2018 Zongpei Song et al. All rights reserved. The Antioxidative Function of Alpha-Ketoglutarate and Its Applications Wed, 21 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 Alpha-ketoglutarate (AKG) is a crucial intermediate of the Krebs cycle and plays a critical role in multiple metabolic processes in animals and humans. Of note, AKG contributes to the oxidation of nutrients (i.e., amino acids, glucose, fatty acids) and then provides energy for cell processes. As a precursor of glutamate and glutamine, AKG acts as an antioxidant agent as it directly reacts with hydrogen peroxide with formation of succinate, water, and carbon dioxide; meanwhile, it discharges plenty of ATP by oxidative decarboxylation. Recent studies also show that AKG has alleviative effect on oxidative stress as a source of energy and an antioxidant in mammalian cells. In this review, we highlight recent advances in the antioxidative function of AKG and its applications in animals and humans. Shaojuan Liu, Liuqin He, and Kang Yao Copyright © 2018 Shaojuan Liu et al. All rights reserved. Beryllium Stress-Induced Modifications in Antioxidant Machinery and Plant Ultrastructure in the Seedlings of Black and Yellow Seeded Oilseed Rape Wed, 21 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 Beryllium (Be) could be a threatening heavy metal pollutant in the agroecosystem that may severely affect the performance of crops. The present study was conducted to evaluate the toxic effects of Be (0, 100, 200, and 400 μM) on physiological, ultrastructure, and biochemical attributes in hydroponically grown six-day-old seedlings of two cultivars of Brassica napus L., one tolerant (ZS 758, black seeded) and one sensitive (Zheda 622, yellow seeded). Higher Be concentrations reduced the plant growth, biomass production, chlorophyll contents, and the total soluble protein contents. A significant accumulation of ROS (H2O2, OH−) and MDA contents was observed in a dose-dependent manner. Antioxidant enzymatic activities including SOD, POD, GR, APX, and GSH (except CAT) were enhanced with the increase in Be concentrations in both cultivars. Relative transcript gene expression of above-mentioned antioxidant enzymes further confirmed the alterations induced by Be as depicted from higher involvement in the least susceptible cultivar ZS 758 as compared to Zheda 622. The electron microscopic study showed that higher level of Be (400 μM) greatly damaged the leaf mesophyll and root tip cells. More damage was observed in cultivar Zheda 622 as compared to ZS 758. The damage in leaf mesophyll cells was highlighted as the disruption in cell wall, immature nucleus, damaged mitochondria, and chloroplast structures. In root tip cells, disruption in Golgi bodies and damage in cell wall were clearly noticed. As a whole, the present study confirmed that more inhibitory effects were recorded in yellow seeded Zheda 622 as compared to black seeded ZS 758 cultivar, which is regarded as more sensitive cultivar. Skhawat Ali, Rong Jin, Rafaqat A. Gill, Theodore M. Mwamba, Na Zhang, Zaid ul Hassan, Faisal Islam, Shafaqat Ali, and Weijun Zhou Copyright © 2018 Skhawat Ali et al. All rights reserved. Bioinformatical Analysis of Organ-Related (Heart, Brain, Liver, and Kidney) and Serum Proteomic Data to Identify Protein Regulation Patterns and Potential Sepsis Biomarkers Wed, 21 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 During the last years, proteomic studies have revealed several interesting findings in experimental sepsis models and septic patients. However, most studies investigated protein alterations only in single organs or in whole blood. To identify possible sepsis biomarkers and to evaluate the relationship between protein alteration in sepsis affected organs and blood, proteomics data from the heart, brain, liver, kidney, and serum were analysed. Using functional network analyses in combination with hierarchical cluster analysis, we found that protein regulation patterns in organ tissues as well as in serum are highly dynamic. In the tissue proteome, the main functions and pathways affected were the oxidoreductive activity, cell energy generation, or metabolism, whereas in the serum proteome, functions were associated with lipoproteins metabolism and, to a minor extent, with coagulation, inflammatory response, and organ regeneration. Proteins from network analyses of organ tissue did not correlate with statistically significantly regulated serum proteins or with predicted proteins of serum functions. In this study, the combination of proteomic network analyses with cluster analyses is introduced as an approach to deal with high-throughput proteomics data to evaluate the dynamics of protein regulation during sepsis. Andreas Hohn, Ivan Iovino, Fabrizio Cirillo, Hendrik Drinhaus, Kathrin Kleinbrahm, Lennert Boehm, Edoardo De Robertis, and Jochen Hinkelbein Copyright © 2018 Andreas Hohn et al. All rights reserved. SRMDAP: SimRank and Density-Based Clustering Recommender Model for miRNA-Disease Association Prediction Wed, 21 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 Aberrant expression of microRNAs (miRNAs) can be applied for the diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment of human diseases. Identifying the relationship between miRNA and human disease is important to further investigate the pathogenesis of human diseases. However, experimental identification of the associations between diseases and miRNAs is time-consuming and expensive. Computational methods are efficient approaches to determine the potential associations between diseases and miRNAs. This paper presents a new computational method based on the SimRank and density-based clustering recommender model for miRNA-disease associations prediction (SRMDAP). The AUC of 0.8838 based on leave-one-out cross-validation and case studies suggested the excellent performance of the SRMDAP in predicting miRNA-disease associations. SRMDAP could also predict diseases without any related miRNAs and miRNAs without any related diseases. Xiaoying Li, Yaping Lin, Changlong Gu, and Zejun Li Copyright © 2018 Xiaoying Li et al. All rights reserved. Radiotherapy for Adult Medulloblastoma: Evaluation of Helical Tomotherapy, Volumetric Intensity Modulated Arc Therapy, and Three-Dimensional Conformal Radiotherapy and the Results of Helical Tomotherapy Therapy Wed, 21 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 Introduction. All adult medulloblastoma (AMB) patients should be treated with craniospinal irradiation (CSI) postoperatively. Because of the long irradiation range, multiple radiation fields must be designed for conventional radiotherapy technology. CSI can be completed in only one session with helical tomotherapy (HT). We evaluated the dose of HT, volumetric intensity modulated arc therapy (VMAT), and three-dimensional conformal radiotherapy (3D-CRT) of AMB and the results of 5 cases of AMB treated with HT. Methods. Complete craniospinal and posterior cranial fossa irradiation with HT, VMAT, and 3D-CRT and dose evaluation were performed. And results of 5 cases of AMB treated with HT were evaluated. Results. A large volume of tissue was exposed to low dose radiation in the organs at risk (OAR), while a small volume was exposed to high dose radiation with HT. The conformity and uniformity of the targets were good with HT and VMAT, and the volume of targets exposed to high dose with VMAT was larger than that of HT. The uniformity of 3D-CRT was also good, but the dose conformity was poor. The main toxicity was hematologic toxicity, without 4th-degree bone marrow suppression. There was 3rd-degree inhibition in the white blood cells, hemoglobin, and platelets. The three female patients suffered menstrual disorders during the course of radiation. Two female patients with heavy menstruation suffered 3rd-degree anemia inhibition, and 2 patients suffered amenorrhea after radiotherapy. Although menstrual cycle was normal, the third patient was not pregnant. Conclusion. CSI with HT is convenient for clinical practice, and the side effects are mild. With good conformity and uniformity, VMAT can also be used for selection in CSI. For poor conformity, 3D-CRT should not be the priority selection for CSI. In female patients, the ovaries should be protected. Sun Zong-wen, Yang Shuang-yan, Du Feng-lei, Cheng Xiao-long, Li Qinglin, Chen Meng-yuan, Hua Yong-hong, Jin Ting, Hu Qiao-ying, Chen Xiao-zhong, Chen Yuan-yuan, and Chen Ming Copyright © 2018 Sun Zong-wen et al. All rights reserved. Temporal Trends of Common Female Malignances on Breast, Cervical, and Ovarian Cancer Mortality in Japan, Republic of Korea, and Singapore: Application of the Age-Period-Cohort Model Wed, 21 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 Background. Reproductive system cancer is an important cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide which threatens women’s health and lives. Breast, cervical, and ovarian cancer have the higher incidence and mortality among a series of gynecology malignant tumor. We aimed to compare and assess the temporal trends of common female malignances on breast, cervical, and ovarian cancer mortality in developed regions of Asia including Japan, Republic of Korea, and Singapore and analyze the detached effects of chronological age, time period, and birth cohort by age-period-cohort (APC) analysis. Methods. The mortality data for these three cancers were collected from the WHO Mortality Database in Japan, Republic of Korea, and Singapore from 1954 to 2013, from 1989 to 2013, and from 1964 to 2013, respectively. We fitted an age-period-cohort model and intrinsic estimator method to estimate the independent effect of each age, time period, and birth cohort on cancer mortality and describe the secular changes in three Asian countries. Results. For the overall trends of breast cancer, the ASMRs of breast cancer showed a general increasing trend among three countries during the study periods while the change pattern in Singapore was different from the rest of the two countries for cervical and ovarian cancer. By APC analysis, the three cancer mortality risks generally increased with age and decreased with birth cohort. For period effects of breast and ovarian cancer, increasing effects with time were observed; however, for period effects of cervical cancer, converse change pattern was presented among three countries. Conclusions. Our study shows that the ASMRs of breast, cervical, and ovarian cancer remain high in Singapore compared to Japan and Korea. Generally speaking, the mortality risk of three cancers increased with age, and period and cohort effects may collectively affect the common female malignances mortality for East Asian women. Jinyao Wang, Haizhen Lv, Zhilin Xue, Lu Wang, and Zhiqiang Bai Copyright © 2018 Jinyao Wang et al. All rights reserved. Towards 90-90-90 Target: Factors Influencing Availability, Access, and Utilization of HIV Services—A Qualitative Study in 19 Ugandan Districts Wed, 21 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 Background. UNAIDS has set a new target 90-90-90 by 2020. To achieve this target, current programs need to address challenges that limit access, availability, and utilization of HIV testing and treatment services. Therefore, the aim of this study was to identify the barriers that influence access, availability, and utilization of HIV services in rural Uganda within the setting of a large donor funded program. Methods. We conducted key informant interviews with stakeholders at the district level, staff of existing HIV/AIDS projects, and health facilities in 19 districts. Data were also collected from focus group discussions comprised of clients presenting for HIV care and treatment. Data were transcribed and analyzed using content analysis. Results. Barriers identified were as follows: (1) drug shortages including antiretroviral drugs at health facilities. Some patients were afraid to start ART because of worrying about shortages; (2) distance and (3) staffing shortages; (4) stigma persistence; (5) lack of social and economic support initiatives that enhance retention in treatment. Conclusions. In conclusion, our study has identified several factors that influence access, availability, and utilization of HIV services. Programs need to address drug and staff shortages, HIV stigma, and long distances to health facilities to broaden access and utilization in order to realize the UNAIDS target. Francis Bajunirwe, Flora Tumwebaze, Denis Akakimpa, Cissy Kityo, Peter Mugyenyi, and George Abongomera Copyright © 2018 Francis Bajunirwe et al. All rights reserved. Factors Affecting the Length of Stay in the Intensive Care Unit: Our Clinical Experience Tue, 20 Mar 2018 08:39:37 +0000 Background and Aim. Long hospital days in intensive care unit (ICU) due to life-threatening diseases are increasing in the world. The primary goal in ICU is to decrease length of stay in order to improve the quality of medical care and reduce cost. The aim of our study is to identify and categorize the factors associated with prolonged stays in ICU. Materials and Method. We retrospectively analyzed 3925 patients. We obtained the patients’ demographic, clinical, diagnostic, and physiologic variables; mortality; lengths of stay by examining the intensive care unit database records. Results. The mean age of the study was 61.6 ± 18.9 years. The average length of stay in intensive care unit was 10.2 ± 25.2 days. The most common cause of hospitalization was because of multiple diseases (19.5%). The length of stay was positively correlated with urea, creatinine, and sodium. It was negatively correlated with uric acid and hematocrit levels. Length of stay was significantly higher in patients not operated on than in patients operated on (). Conclusion. Our study showed a significantly increased length of stay in patients with cardiovascular system diseases, multiple diseases, nervous system diseases, and cerebrovascular diseases. Moreover we showed that when urea, creatinine, and sodium values increase, in parallel the length of stay increases. Mehmet Toptas, Nilay Sengul Samanci, İbrahim Akkoc, Esma Yucetas, Egemen Cebeci, Oznur Sen, Mehmet Mustafa Can, and Savas Ozturk Copyright © 2018 Mehmet Toptas et al. All rights reserved. How Artificial Intelligence Can Improve Our Understanding of the Genes Associated with Endometriosis: Natural Language Processing of the PubMed Database Tue, 20 Mar 2018 06:40:06 +0000 Endometriosis is a disease characterized by the development of endometrial tissue outside the uterus, but its cause remains largely unknown. Numerous genes have been studied and proposed to help explain its pathogenesis. However, the large number of these candidate genes has made functional validation through experimental methodologies nearly impossible. Computational methods could provide a useful alternative for prioritizing those most likely to be susceptibility genes. Using artificial intelligence applied to text mining, this study analyzed the genes involved in the pathogenesis, development, and progression of endometriosis. The data extraction by text mining of the endometriosis-related genes in the PubMed database was based on natural language processing, and the data were filtered to remove false positives. Using data from the text mining and gene network information as input for the web-based tool, 15,207 endometriosis-related genes were ranked according to their score in the database. Characterization of the filtered gene set through gene ontology, pathway, and network analysis provided information about the numerous mechanisms hypothesized to be responsible for the establishment of ectopic endometrial tissue, as well as the migration, implantation, survival, and proliferation of ectopic endometrial cells. Finally, the human genome was scanned through various databases using filtered genes as a seed to determine novel genes that might also be involved in the pathogenesis of endometriosis but which have not yet been characterized. These genes could be promising candidates to serve as useful diagnostic biomarkers and therapeutic targets in the management of endometriosis. J. Bouaziz, R. Mashiach, S. Cohen, A. Kedem, A. Baron, M. Zajicek, I. Feldman, D. Seidman, and D. Soriano Copyright © 2018 J. Bouaziz et al. All rights reserved. Prognostic Significance of Blood Transfusion in Elderly Patients with Primary Diffuse Large B-Cell Lymphoma Tue, 20 Mar 2018 06:25:54 +0000 The current study sought to evaluate whether blood transfusions affect survival of elderly patients with primary diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL). A total of 104 patients aged 60 years and over were enrolled and divided into two groups: 24 patients who received transfusions and 80 patients who did not. Statistical analyses showed significant differences in LDH levels, platelet (Plt) counts, and hemoglobin (Hb) and albumin (Alb) levels between the two groups. Univariate analyses showed that LDH level ≥ 245 IU/L, cell of origin (germinal center/nongerminal center), and blood transfusion were associated with both overall survival (OS) and progression-free survival (PFS). Higher IPI (3–5), Alb level < 35 g/L, and rituximab usage were associated with OS. Appearance of B symptoms was associated with PFS. Multivariate analyses showed that cell of origin and rituximab usage were independent factors for OS and LDH level was an independent factor for PFS. Blood transfusion was an independent factor for PFS, but not for OS. Our preliminary results suggested that elderly patients with primary DLBCL may benefit from a restrictive blood transfusion strategy. Liping Fan, Danhui Fu, Jinquan Hong, Haobo Huang, Wenqian He, Feng Zeng, Qiuyan Lin, and Qianling Xie Copyright © 2018 Liping Fan et al. All rights reserved. Statistical Validation for Clinical Measures: Repeatability and Agreement of Kinect™-Based Software Tue, 20 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 Background. The rehabilitation process is a fundamental stage for recovery of people’s capabilities. However, the evaluation of the process is performed by physiatrists and medical doctors, mostly based on their observations, that is, a subjective appreciation of the patient’s evolution. This paper proposes a tracking platform of the movement made by an individual’s upper limb using Kinect sensor(s) to be applied for the patient during the rehabilitation process. The main contribution is the development of quantifying software and the statistical validation of its performance, repeatability, and clinical use in the rehabilitation process. Methods. The software determines joint angles and upper limb trajectories for the construction of a specific rehabilitation protocol and quantifies the treatment evolution. In turn, the information is presented via a graphical interface that allows the recording, storage, and report of the patient’s data. For clinical purposes, the software information is statistically validated with three different methodologies, comparing the measures with a goniometer in terms of agreement and repeatability. Results. The agreement of joint angles measured with the proposed software and goniometer is evaluated with Bland-Altman plots; all measurements fell well within the limits of agreement, meaning interchangeability of both techniques. Additionally, the results of Bland-Altman analysis of repeatability show 95% confidence. Finally, the physiotherapists’ qualitative assessment shows encouraging results for the clinical use. Conclusion. The main conclusion is that the software is capable of offering a clinical history of the patient and is useful for quantification of the rehabilitation success. The simplicity, low cost, and visualization possibilities enhance the use of the software Kinect for rehabilitation and other applications, and the expert’s opinion endorses the choice of our approach for clinical practice. Comparison of the new measurement technique with established goniometric methods determines that the proposed software agrees sufficiently to be used interchangeably. Natalia Lopez, Elisa Perez, Emanuel Tello, Alejandro Rodrigo, and Max E. Valentinuzzi Copyright © 2018 Natalia Lopez et al. All rights reserved. Effect of Icariin on Tibial Dyschondroplasia Incidence and Tibial Characteristics by Regulating P2RX7 in Chickens Tue, 20 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 Tibial dyschondroplasia (TD) is a disease of rapid growing chickens that occurs in many avian species; it is characterized by nonvascular and nonmineralized growth plates, along with tibia bone deformation and lameness. Icariin is widely used to treat bone diseases in humans, but no report is available regarding the effectiveness of icariin against avian TD. Therefore, this study was designed to determine its effect against TD. For this purpose, a total of 180 broiler chicks were distributed into three groups including control, TD, and icariin group. Control group was given a standard normal diet, while TD and icariin groups received normal standard diet containing 50 mg/kg thiram to induce TD from days 3 to 7 after hatch. After the induction of TD, the chicks of icariin group were fed with standard normal diet by adding 10 mg/kg icariin in water. Then morphological and production parameters analysis of tibial bone indicators, physiological index changes, and gene expression were examined. The results showed that icariin administration not only decreased the mortality but also mitigated the lameness and promoted the angiogenesis, which diminished the TD lesion and significantly increased the expression of P2RX7 () in TD affected thiram induced chicks. In conclusion, present findings suggest that icariin has a significant role in promoting the recovery of chicken growth plates affected by TD via regulating the P2RX7. Our findings reveal a new target for clinical treatment and prevention of TD in broiler chickens. Hui Zhang, Khalid Mehmood, Xiong Jiang, Wangyuan Yao, Mujahid Iqbal, Kun Li, Xiaole Tong, Lei Wang, Meng Wang, Lihong Zhang, Fazul Nabi, Mujeeb Ur Rehman, and Jiakui Li Copyright © 2018 Hui Zhang et al. All rights reserved. Corrigendum to “Classification of Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Using Significance Analysis of Microarray-Gene Set Reduction Algorithm” Tue, 20 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 Lei Zhang, Linlin Wang, Bochuan Du, Tianjiao Wang, Pu Tian, and Suyan Tian Copyright © 2018 Lei Zhang et al. All rights reserved. Corrigendum to “Effects of rhBMP-2 Loaded Titanium Reinforced Collagen Membranes on Horizontal Bone Augmentation in Dogs” Tue, 20 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 Ki-Sun Lee, Yu-Sung Jeon, Sang-Wan Shin, and Jeong-Yol Lee Copyright © 2018 Ki-Sun Lee et al. All rights reserved. Cancer Immunotherapy and Identification of Prognostic and Predictive Biomarkers Tue, 20 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 Carmen Criscitiello, Michele Santangelo, and Fotios Loupakis Copyright © 2018 Carmen Criscitiello et al. All rights reserved. Screening of Serum Protein Markers for Avascular Osteonecrosis of Femoral Head Differentially Expressed after Treatment with Yuanshi Shengmai Chenggu Tablets Tue, 20 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 Avascular necrosis of the femoral head (ANFH) is an a frequently occurring orthopaedic disease with high morbidity. Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) Yuanshi Shengmai Chenggu Tablet is a valid prescription for treating steroid-induced femoral head necrosis. However, there are rare investigations about the serum protein marker expression after the acting of drugs on hormone and TCM. In the present study, we aimed to systematically discover and validate the serum biomarkers expression difference in patients with steroid-induced avascular necrosis of femoral head (SANFH) after taking Yuanshi Shengmai Chenggu Tablets (SANFH-TCM), so as to reveal the action mechanism of TCM from the molecular level by using isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantification (iTRAQ) with multiple reaction monitoring quantification. Significant differences in fibrinogen alpha, fibrinogen beta, fibrinogen gamma, fibronectin, C-reactive protein, apolipoprotein A, apolipoprotein D, and apolipoprotein E were found among SANFH, SANFH-TCM, and healthy controls. Therefore, our study proposes potential biomarkers for SANFH diagnosis and for the prognosis of femoral head necrosis after Traditional Chinese Medicine treatment. Peng Deng, Jianchun Zeng, Jie Li, Wenjun Feng, Jinlun Chen, and Yirong Zeng Copyright © 2018 Peng Deng et al. All rights reserved. Right Ventricle Remodeling and Function in Scleroderma Patients Tue, 20 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 Scleroderma, known also as systemic sclerosis (SSc), is a severe disease associated with high mortality rates, and right ventricular (RV) remodeling and dysfunction, along with pulmonary artery hypertension (PAH), are among the most important internal organ manifestations of this disease. PAH has a higher prevalence in patients with SSc compared to the general population and represents a significant predictor of mortality in SSc. In patients with SSc, the morphological remodeling and alteration of RV function begin even before the setting of PAH and lead to development of a specific adaptive pattern of the RV which is different from the one recorded in patients with IAPH. These alterations cause worse outcomes and increased mortality rates in SSc patients. Early detection of RV dysfunction and remodeling is possible using modern imaging tools currently available and can indicate the initiation of specific therapeutic measures before installation of PAH. The aim of this review is to summarize the current knowledge related to mechanisms involved in the remodeling and functional alteration of the RV in SSc patients. Roxana Cucuruzac, Iolanda Muntean, Imre Benedek, Andras Mester, Nora Rat, Adriana Mitre, Monica Chitu, and Theodora Benedek Copyright © 2018 Roxana Cucuruzac et al. All rights reserved. Corrigendum to “Natural Treatment Systems as Sustainable Ecotechnologies for the Developing Countries” Tue, 20 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 Qaisar Mahmood, Arshid Pervez, Bibi Saima Zeb, Habiba Zaffar, Hajra Yaqoob, Muhammad Waseem, Zahidullah, and Sumera Afsheen Copyright © 2018 Qaisar Mahmood et al. All rights reserved. In Vitro Lethal Activity of the Nematophagous Fungus Clonostachys rosea (Ascomycota: Hypocreales) against Nematodes of Five Different Taxa Tue, 20 Mar 2018 00:00:00 +0000 This study was aimed to evaluate the in vitro lethal activity of the nematophagous fungi Clonostachys rosea against 5 nematodes species belonging to different taxa. Two groups of 35 Petri dishes (PD) each were divided into 5 series of 7 (PD). Group 1 (series 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5) contained only water agar; meanwhile group 2 plates (series 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10) contained C. rosea cultures growth on water agar. Every plate from the two groups was added with 500 nematodes corresponding to the following genera/specie: Haemonchus contortus, Caenorhabditis elegans, Rhabditis sp., Panagrellus redivivus, and Butlerius sp. After 5-day incubation at room temperature, free (nontrapped) larvae were recovered from plates using the Baermann funnel technique. Recovered nematodes were counted and compared with their proper controls. Results shown an important reduction percentage of the nematode population attributed to the fungal lethal activity as follows: H. contortus (L3) 87.7%; C. elegans 94.7%; Rhabditis sp. 71.9%; P. redivivus 92.7%; and Butlerius sp. 100% (). The activity showed by C. rosea against the H. contortus can be crucial for further studies focused to the biological control of sheep haemonchosis, although the environmental impact against beneficial nematodes should be evaluated. Rosalia Rodríguez-Martínez, Pedro Mendoza-de-Gives, Liliana Aguilar-Marcelino, María Eugenia López-Arellano, Marcela Gamboa-Angulo, Greta Hanako Rosas-Saito, Manuela Reyes-Estébanez, and Virginia Guadalupe García-Rubio Copyright © 2018 Rosalia Rodríguez-Martínez et al. All rights reserved. Patient-Specific Surgical Implants Made of 3D Printed PEEK: Material, Technology, and Scope of Surgical Application Mon, 19 Mar 2018 08:12:42 +0000 Additive manufacturing (AM) is rapidly gaining acceptance in the healthcare sector. Three-dimensional (3D) virtual surgical planning, fabrication of anatomical models, and patient-specific implants (PSI) are well-established processes in the surgical fields. Polyetheretherketone (PEEK) has been used, mainly in the reconstructive surgeries as a reliable alternative to other alloplastic materials for the fabrication of PSI. Recently, it has become possible to fabricate PEEK PSI with Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF) technology. 3D printing of PEEK using FFF allows construction of almost any complex design geometry, which cannot be manufactured using other technologies. In this study, we fabricated various PEEK PSI by FFF 3D printer in an effort to check the feasibility of manufacturing PEEK with 3D printing. Based on these preliminary results, PEEK can be successfully used as an appropriate biomaterial to reconstruct the surgical defects in a “biomimetic” design. Philipp Honigmann, Neha Sharma, Brando Okolo, Uwe Popp, Bilal Msallem, and Florian M. Thieringer Copyright © 2018 Philipp Honigmann et al. All rights reserved. Automatic Myotendinous Junction Tracking in Ultrasound Images with Phase-Based Segmentation Mon, 19 Mar 2018 07:16:33 +0000 Displacement of the myotendinous junction (MTJ) obtained by ultrasound imaging is crucial to quantify the interactive length changes of muscles and tendons for understanding the mechanics and pathological conditions of the muscle-tendon unit during motion. However, the lack of a reliable automatic measurement method restricts its application in human motion analysis. This paper presents an automated measurement of MTJ displacement using prior knowledge on tendinous tissues and MTJ, precluding the influence of nontendinous components on the estimation of MTJ displacement. It is based on the perception of tendinous features from musculoskeletal ultrasound images using Radon transform and thresholding methods, with information about the symmetric measures obtained from phase congruency. The displacement of MTJ is achieved by tracking manually marked points on tendinous tissues with the Lucas-Kanade optical flow algorithm applied over the segmented MTJ region. The performance of this method was evaluated on ultrasound images of the gastrocnemius obtained from 10 healthy subjects ( years of age). Waveform similarity between the manual and automatic measurements was assessed by calculating the overall similarity with the coefficient of multiple correlation (CMC). In vivo experiments demonstrated that MTJ tracking with the proposed method (CMC = ) was more consistent with the manual measurements than existing optical flow tracking methods (CMC = ). This study demonstrated that the proposed method was robust to the interference of nontendinous components, resulting in a more reliable measurement of MTJ displacement, which may facilitate further research and applications related to the architectural change of muscles and tendons. Guang-Quan Zhou, Yi Zhang, Ruo-Li Wang, Ping Zhou, Yong-Ping Zheng, Olga Tarassova, Anton Arndt, and Qiang Chen Copyright © 2018 Guang-Quan Zhou et al. All rights reserved.