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TECHNICAL ARTICLE
Western blot: Technique, theory, and trouble shooting
Tahrin Mahmood, Ping-Chang Yang
September 2012, 4(9):429-434
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.100998  PMID:23050259
Western blotting is an important technique used in cell and molecular biology. By using a western blot, researchers are able to identify specific proteins from a complex mixture of proteins extracted from cells. The technique uses three elements to accomplish this task: (1) separation by size, (2) transfer to a solid support, and (3) marking target protein using a proper primary and secondary antibody to visualize. This paper will attempt to explain the technique and theory behind western blot, and offer some ways to troubleshoot.
  163 49,098 17,367
ORIGINAL ARTICLES
Antibiotic susceptibility patterns of urinary pathogens in female outpatients
Iram Shaifali, Uma Gupta, Syed Esam Mahmood, Jawed Ahmed
April 2012, 4(4):163-169
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.94940  PMID:22536558
Background: Urinary tract Infection (UTI) is among the most common infections described in outpatient setting and hospital patients. In almost all cases empirical antimicrobial treatment initiates before the laboratory results of urine culture are available; thus antibiotic resistance may increase in uropathogens due to frequent use of antibiotics. Aims: The study was designed to find the prevalence of UTI in females with urinary tract symptoms, to determine the causative organism (s) of UTI, and to determine the antibiotic susceptibility pattern of microbial agents isolated from urine culture (antibiogram). Materials and Methods: The prospective, observational study involved 139 females, aged 15 years and above clinically suspected for UTI attending outpatient Departments of Vivekananda Polyclinic and Institute of Medical Sciences, Lucknow. A structured questionnaire was used to interview the study subjects. A chi-square test and Fisher Exact test were used to analyze data. Results: The overall prevalence of UTI was found to be 45.32% (63/139). Escherichia coli (33.1%) and Klebsiella pneumoniae (7.9%) were the most common organisms isolated. The most effective antibiotic for both was Nitrofurantoin. Conclusions: Regular monitoring is required to establish reliable information about susceptibility pattern of urinary pathogens for optimal empirical therapy of patients with UTI.
  68 5,626 944
REVIEW ARTICLES
Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory role of paraoxonase 1: Implication in arteriosclerosis diseases
Dmitry Litvinov, Halleh Mahini, Mahdi Garelnabi
November 2012, 4(11):523-532
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.103310  PMID:23181222
Paraoxonase 1 (PON1) is a hydrolytic enzyme with wide range of substrates, and capability to protect against lipid oxidation. Despite of the large number of compounds that can be hydrolyzed by paraoxonase, the biologically relevant substrates are still not clearly determined. There is a massive in vitro and in vivo data to demonstrate the beneficial effects of PON1 in several atherosclerosis-related processes. The enzyme is primarily expressed in liver; however, it is also localized in other tissues. PON1 attracted significant interest as a protein that is responsible for the most of antioxidant properties of high-density lipoprotein (HDL). Several bioactive molecules such as dietary polyphenols, aspirin and its hydrolysis product salicylate, are known to stimulate PON1 transcription activation in mouse liver and HepG2 cell line. Studies on the activity, function, and genetic makeup have revealed a protective role of PON1. Some striking data were obtained in PON1 gene knockout and PON1 transgenic mouse models and in human studies. The goal of this review is to assess the current understanding of PON1 expression, enzymatic and antioxidant activity, and its atheroprotective effects. Results from in vivo and in vitro basic studies; and from human studies on the association of PON1 with coronary artery disease (CAD) and ischemic stroke will be discussed.
  60 6,357 1,134
Winter cardiovascular diseases phenomenon
Auda Fares
April 2013, 5(4):266-279
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.110430  PMID:23724401
This paper review seasonal patterns across twelve cardiovascular diseases: Deep venous thrombosis, pulmonary embolism, aortic dissection and rupture, stroke, intracerebral hemorrhage, hypertension, heart failure, angina pectoris, myocardial infarction, sudden cardiac death, venricular arrythmia and atrial fibrillation, and discuss a possible cause of the occurrence of these diseases. There is a clear seasonal trend of cardiovascular diseases, with the highest incidence occurring during the colder winter months, which have been described in many countries. This phenomenon likely contributes to the numbers of deaths occurring in winter. The implications of this finding are important for testing the relative importance of the proposed mechanisms. Understanding the influence of season and other factors is essential when seeking to implement effective public health measures.
  59 5,184 878
REVIEW ARTICLE
Hypercalcemia of malignancy: An update on pathogenesis and management
Aibek E Mirrakhimov
November 2015, 7(11):483-493
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.170600  PMID:26713296
Hypercalcemia of malignancy is a common finding typically found in patients with advanced stage cancers. We aimed to provide an updated review on the etiology, pathogenesis, clinical presentation, and management of malignancy-related hypercalcemia. We searched PubMed/Medline, Scopus, Embase, and Web of Science for original articles, case reports, and case series articles focused on hypercalcemia of malignancy published from 1950 to December 2014. Hypercalcemia of malignancy usually presents with markedly elevated calcium levels and therefore, usually severely symptomatic. Several major mechanisms are responsible for the development of hypercalcemia of malignancy including parathyroid hormone-related peptide-mediated humoral hypercalcemia, osteolytic metastases-related hypercalcemia, 1,25 Vitamin D-mediated hypercalcemia, and parathyroid hormone-mediated hypercalcemia in patients with parathyroid carcinoma and extra parathyroid cancers. Diagnosis should include the history and physical examination as well as measurement of the above mediators of hypercalcemia. Management includes hydration, calcitonin, bisphosphonates, denosumab, and in certain patients, prednisone and cinacalcet. Patients with advanced underlying kidney disease and refractory severe hypercalcemia should be considered for hemodialysis. Hematology or oncology and palliative care specialists should be involved early to guide the options of cancer targeted therapies and help the patients and their closed ones with the discussion of comfort-oriented care.
  56 10,293 3,200
ORIGINAL ARTICLES
Evaluation of TNF-α and IL-6 levels in obese and non-obese diabetics: Pre- and postinsulin effects
Rajeev Goyal, Abul Faiz Faizy, Sheelu S Siddiqui, Monil Singhai
April 2012, 4(4):180-184
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.94944  PMID:22536561
Background: Type 2 diabetes (T2DM) mellitus is a serious implication of obesity. The effect of insulin therapy on levels of inflammatory markers among obese and non-obese diabetics has been inadequately studied. Aim: The study aimed to analyze the preinsulin and postinsulin levels of tumor necrosis factor α (TNF-α) and IL-6 in nonobese and obese T2DM patients. Materials and Methods: We assessed TNF-α and IL-6 levels in healthy controls (n=10) and diabetic patients (obese and nonobese; n=20 each) and analyzed the postinsulin effect on TNF-α and IL-6 levels after 24 and 48 weeks. TNF-α and IL-6 levels were also correlated with fasting plasma glucose of obese and nonobese diabetic patients after insulin therapy. Results: There is augmentation of TNF-α and IL-6 levels in diabetic patients and augmentation is more in obese than in nonobese diabetics. The obese group showed a significant decrease (P value<0.05) after 24 weeks of insulin therapy and an extremely significant decrease ( P<0.001) in TNF-α and IL-6 levels after 48 weeks of therapy. The nonobese group showed an extremely significant decrease ( P<0.001) in TNF-α and IL-6levels after 24 and 48 weeks both. Conclusion: There is augmented inflammation in diabetes and it is more in obese diabetics. Insulin therapy tends to counter this inflammation, but the response is delayed in obese diabetics.
  46 4,745 701
Statin intolerance because of myalgia, myositis, myopathy, or myonecrosis can in most cases be safely resolved by vitamin d supplementation
Maksim Khayznikov, Kallish Hemachrandra, Ramesh Pandit, Ashwin Kumar, Ping Wang, Charles J Glueck
March 2015, 7(3):86-93
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.153919  PMID:25838999
Background: Low serum vitamin D can cause myalgia, myositis, myopathy, and myonecrosis. Statin-induced myalgia is a major and common cause of statin intolerance. Low serum vitamin D and statins, additively or synergistically, cause myalgia, myositis, myopathy, and/or myonecrosis. Statin-induced myalgia in vitamin D deficient patients can often be resolved by vitamin D supplementation, normalizing serum vitamin D levels. Aims: In 74 men and 72 women (age 59 ± 14 years) intolerant to ≥2 statins because of myalgia, myositis, myopathy, or myonecrosis and found to have low (<32 ng/mL) serum vitamin D, we prospectively assessed whether vitamin D supplementation (vitamin D2: 50,000-100,000 units/week) to normalize serum vitamin D would allow successful rechallenge therapy with statins. Materials and Methods: Follow-up evaluation on vitamin D supplementation was done on 134 patients at 6 months (median 5.3), 103 patients at 12 months (median 12.2), and 82 patients at 24 months (median 24). Results: Median entry serum vitamin D (22 ng/mL, 23 ng/mL, and 23 ng/mL) rose at 6 months, 12 months, and 24 months follow-up to 53 ng/mL, 53 ng/mL, and 55 ng/mL, respectively, (P < .0001 for all) on vitamin D therapy (50,000-100,000 units/week). On vitamin D supplementation, serum vitamin D normalized at 6 months, 12 months, and 24 months follow-up in 90%, 86%, and 91% of the patients, respectively. On rechallenge with statins while on vitamin D supplementation, median low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDLC) fell from the study entry (167 mg/dL, 164 mg/dL, and 158 mg/dL) to 90 mg/dL, 91 mg/dL, and 84 mg/dL, respectively, (P < .0001 for all). On follow-up at median 6 months, 12 months, and 24 months on statins and vitamin D, 88%, 91%, and 95% of the previously statin-intolerant patients, respectively, were free of myalgia, myositis, myopathy, and/or myonecrosis. Conclusions: Statin intolerance because of myalgia, myositis, myopathy, or myonecrosis associated with low serum vitamin D can be safely resolved by vitamin D supplementation (50,000-100,000 units /week) in most cases (88-95%).
  45 4,571 1,179
REVIEW ARTICLE
Hyaluronic acid: A boon in periodontal therapy
Parveen Dahiya, Reet Kamal
May 2013, 5(5):309-315
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.112473  PMID:23814761
Hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring linear polysaccharide of the extracellular matrix of connective tissue, synovial fluid, and other tissues. Its use in the treatment of the inflammatory process is established in medical areas such as orthopedics, dermatology, and ophthalmology. The Pubmed/Medline database was searched for keywords "Hyaluronic acid and periodontal disease" and "Hyaluronic acid and gingivitis" which resulted in 89 and 22 articles respectively. Only highly relevant articles from electronic and manual search in English literature were selected for the present review article. In the field of dentistry, hyaluronic acid has shown anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial effects in the treatment of periodontal diseases. Due to its tissue healing properties, it could be used as an adjunct to mechanical therapy in the treatment of periodontitis. Further studies are required to determine the clinical efficacy of hyaluronic acid in healing of periodontal lesion. The aim of the present review, article is to discuss the role of hyaluronic acid in periodontal therapy.
  42 7,171 1,486
ORIGINAL ARTICLES
Antioxidant enzymes and lipid peroxidation in Type 2 diabetes mellitus patients with and without nephropathy
Manjulata Kumawat, Tarun Kumar Sharma, Ishwar Singh, Neelima Singh, Veena Singh Ghalaut, Satish Kumar Vardey, Vijay Shankar
March 2013, 5(3):213-219
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.109193  PMID:23626958
Background: Oxidative stress has been considered to be a pathogenic factor of diabetic complications including nephropathy. There are many controversies and limited studies regarding the antioxidant enzymes in diabetic nephropathy. Aim: This study was to evaluate the levels of antioxidant enzymes and lipid peroxidation in Type-2 Diabetes Mellitus (DM) patients with and without nephropathy. Materials and Methods: The study included 90 age and sex matched subjects. Blood samples of all subjects were analyzed for all biochemical and oxidative stress parameters. Results: The malondialdehyde (MDA) levels and catalase (CAT) activity were significantly increased and reduced glutathione (GSH) levels and activities of glutathione peroxidase (GPx) and glutathione reductase (GR) were significantly decreased in Type-2 DM with and without nephropathy as compared to controls and also in Type-2 DM with nephropathy as compared to Type-2 DM without nephropathy. There were an excellent positive correlation of glycohemoglobin (HbA1c) with MDA and a good negative correlation of GPx with GSH in controls. There were positive correlations of GR, CAT, and superoxide dismutase (SOD) with MDA in Type-2 diabetes patients with nephropathy. Conclusions: Intensity of oxidative stress in Type-2 diabetic patients with nephropathy is greater when compared with Type-2 diabetic patients without nephropathy as compared to the controls.
  39 3,231 654
REVIEW ARTICLE
Diagnosis and Management of Gallbladder Polyps
Ĺke Andrén-Sandberg
May 2012, 4(5):203-211
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.95897  PMID:22655278
Gallbladder cancer is a rather uncommon disease, when it gives symptoms it has usually reached an incurable stage. Therefore, every attempt must be made to find the asymptomatic stages and look for premalignant gallbladder polyps. Even if gallbladder cancer is a rare disease, gallbladder polyps are common, only a few polyps develop to cancer. This makes gallbladder polyps another problem: which are the polyps that must be surgically removed, which shall be followed-up, or for how long? The author used the keyword "gallbladder polyps" in PubMed and reviewed the scientific literatures published from January 2000 to December 2011. The present review article has summarized almost all respects of gallbladder polyp, including the risk factors, clinical diagnosis and management, and comments made from the author, in which clinical treatments are recommended. It is author's purpose that the 11-year-knowledge about gallbladder polyps summarized from all worlds' literatures is enough to know how clinicians will handle the next patient with gallbladder polyp.
  36 7,537 1,401
REVIEW ARTICLES
Errors in potassium measurement: A laboratory perspective for the clinician
Jaya R Asirvatham, Viju Moses, Loring Bjornson
April 2013, 5(4):255-259
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.110426  PMID:23724399
Errors in potassium measurement can cause pseudohyperkalemia, where serum potassium is falsely elevated. Usually, these are recognized either by the laboratory or the clinician. However, the same factors that cause pseudohyperkalemia can mask hypokalemia by pushing measured values into the reference interval. These cases require a high-index of suspicion by the clinician as they cannot be easily identified in the laboratory. This article discusses the causes and mechanisms of spuriously elevated potassium, and current recommendations to minimize those factors. "Reverse" pseudohyperkalemia and the role of correction factors are also discussed. Relevant articles were identified by a literature search performed on PubMed using the terms "pseudohyperkalemia," "reverse pseudohyperkalemia," "factitious hyperkalemia," "spurious hyperkalemia," and "masked hypokalemia."
  34 9,858 1,743
Stress, burnout and coping strategies in preclinical medical students
Jawad Fares, Hayat Al Tabosh, Zein Saadeddin, Christopher El Mouhayyar, Hussam Aridi
February 2016, 8(2):75-81
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.177299  PMID:27042604
It is acknowledged that physicians do not seek the same expert aid for themselves as they would offer their patients. In their preclinical years, medical students appear to espouse comparable behavior. To many, medicine is described as a never-ending path that places the student under heavy stress and burnout from the beginning, leaving him/her vulnerable and with insufficient coping methods. Hence, the objective of this study is to 1) explore the prevalence of stress and burnout among preclinical medical students, and 2) propose solutions to decrease stress and burnout and improve medical education in the preclinical years. A detailed scholarly research strategy using Google Scholar, Scopus, Embase, MEDLINE and PubMed was implemented to highlight key themes that are relevant to preclinical medical students' stress and burnout. Stress varied among different samples of medical students and ranged between 20.9% and 90%. Conversely, burnout ranged between 27% and 75%. Methods that help in reducing the incidence of stress and burnout by promoting strategies that focus on personal engagement, extracurricular activities, positive reinterpretation and expression of emotion, student-led mentorship programs, evaluation systems, career counseling and life coaching should be adopted.
  34 5,476 1,189
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Role of enteric supplementation of probiotics on late-onset sepsis by candida species in preterm low birth weight neonates: A randomized, double blind, placebo-controlled trial
Amrita Roy, Jasodhara Chaudhuri, Debalina Sarkar, Pramit Ghosh, Swapna Chakraborty
January 2014, 6(1):50-57
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.125870  PMID:24678479
Background: The increase in invasive fungal infections (IFIs) in neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) is jeopardizing the survival of preterm neonates. Probiotics modulating the intestinal microflora of preterm neonates may minimize enteral fungal colonization. Aims: This study was to examine whether probiotic supplementation in neonates reduced fungal septicemia. Materials and Methods: This prospective, randomized, double blind trial investigating the supplementation of preterm infants with a probiotic was done from May 2012 to April 2013, with 112 subjects randomized into two groups. Primary outcome: Decreased fungal colonization in gastrointestinal tract. Others: Incidence of late onset septicemia; duration of the primary hospital admission; number of days until full enteral feeds established. Results: Full feed establishment was earlier in probiotics group compared to placebo group (P = 0.016). The duration of hospitalization was less in the probiotic group (P = 0.002). Stool fungal colonization, an important outcome parameter was 3.03 ± 2.33 × 10 5 colony formation units (CFU) in the probiotics group compared to 3 ± 1.5 × 10 5 CFU in the placebo group (P = 0.03). Fungal infection is less in the study group (P = 0.001). Conclusion: The key features of our study were reduced enteral fungal colonization, reduce invasive fungal sepsis, earlier establishment of full enteral feeds, and reduced duration of hospital stay in the probiotics group.
  33 3,312 713
REVIEW ARTICLE
Effectiveness of D-dimer as a screening test for venous thromboembolism: An update
Swaroopa Pulivarthi, Murali Krishna Gurram
October 2014, 6(10):491-499
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.143278  PMID:25489560
Venous thromboembolism (VTE) is the leading cause of morbidity and mortality among hospitalized patients. We searched the PubMed database and reviewed the articles published until June 2011. Articles related to the D-dimer and VTE were considered to write this paper. Many factors play a key role in changing the sensitivity and specificity of D-dimer testing, including the extent of thrombosis and fibrinolytic activity, duration of symptoms, anticoagulant therapy, comorbidity due to surgical or medical illnesses, inflammatory diseases, cancer, elderly age, pregnancy and the postpartum period, and previous VTE. Many previous studies have shown that the D-dimer test is highly sensitive (>95%) in acute deep venous thrombosis or pulmonary embolism, usually with a cut-off value of 500 μg FEU/l, which reasonably rules out acute VTE, particularly in patients with low clinical probability (LCP) or intermediate clinical probability. Patients with high D-dimer levels upon presentation may prompt a more intense diagnostic approach, irrespective of pretest probability. Studies performed after a negative D-dimer for 3 months proved the high negative predictive value (NPV) of D-dimer testing together with LCP in patients with suspected VTE. Among oncology patients, D-dimer testing has the highest sensitivity and NPV in excluding VTE. The new cutoff values of D-dimer testing were analyzed in a recent prospective study of pregnant women; they are 286 ng DDU/ml, 457 ng DDU/ml, and 644 ng DDU/ml for the first, second, and third trimesters, respectively.
  33 6,671 1,533
REVIEW ARTICLES
The effects of β - glucan on fish immunity
Vaclav Vetvicka, Luca Vannucci, Petr Sima
October 2013, 5(10):580-588
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.120792  PMID:24350069
Administration of glucans through immersion, dietary inclusion or injection has been found to enhance many types of immune responses, resistance to bacterial and viral infections and to environmental stress in many fish species. Although the efficacy of the glucan varies with types and administration, glucan used as an immunomodulatory and mostly immunostimulatory additive has been found satisfactory in eliciting immunity in commercial aquaculture. Development of more efficient administration methods will facilitate the routine and prophylactic use of glucans as natural immunostimulants of fish. Using a PubMed search, this review has an extensive literature on glucan in fish immunity.
  33 3,885 788
Spontaneous pneumomediastinum: Time for consensus
Sonu Sahni, Sameer Verma, Jinette Grullon, Anthony Esquire, Purvesh Patel, Arunabh Talwar
August 2013, 5(8):460-464
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.117296  PMID:24083220
Pneumomediastinum (PM) is defined as the presence of free air in the mediastinal cavity. It is often regarded as a revealing sign of a more serious medical condition. PM is broken down into two categories, one, with an instigating event, referred to as secondary PM. The other is when free air is discovered in the mediastinal cavity without a clear etiology, referred to as spontaneous pneumomediastinum (SPM). Often misdiagnosed due to the vague nature of presenting symptoms, SPM must be part of the differential diagnosis of a chest pain patient to expedite discovery and if necessary, management. A MedLine/PubMED search was performed identifying all relevant articles with "SPM" in the title. Six case series were reviewed to determine what clinical scenario constitutes a possible case of SPM. Results showed that almost all patients with SPM exhibited some chest pain, but Hamman's crunch was present in only one-fifth of patients. Patients with certain pre-existing pulmonary diseases showed a greater propensity for the presence of free air in the mediastinal cavity. SPM must be diagnosed and managed promptly due to rare, but serious complications and any chest pain with an unknown etiology should contain SPM in the differential diagnosis.
  33 4,217 939
ORIGINAL ARTICLES
Familial, Environmental, and Occupational Risk Factors in Development of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
Kamalesh Das, Chiranjib Nag, Mrinalkanti Ghosh
August 2012, 4(8):350-355
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.99517  PMID:22912943
Background: Definite etiology of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is still a matter of debate. Aims: The study was designed to evaluate the role of environmental, occupational, and familial risk factors in development of ALS. Materials and Methods: This was a case control study of 110 cases of definite ALS with 240 age and sex matched controls. Investigations were done on the following aspects- family history, occupation, living place, source of drinking water, exposure to industrial, chemical, agricultural toxins and heavy metals, physical and electrical injury, working under magnetic field for more than 10 years in both the groups. Clinical examinations, electrophysiological, and neuroimaging studies were done in every patient. Chi square test, logistic regression analysis, and calculation of odds ratio were used to analyze the data. Results: Rural livings (odds ratio = 1.99), smoking (odds ratio = 1.88), insecticides, and pesticides exposures (odds ratio = 1.61), electrical injury (odds ratio = 6.2) were detected as the associated factors in development amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Conclusions: The study expressed the need of extensive research globally in molecular and genetic levels to detect the associated factors in etiopathogenesis of ALS for better understanding the etiology and for remedial aspects.
  32 3,760 671
Body mass index relates to blood pressure among adults
Suman Dua, Monika Bhuker, Pankhuri Sharma, Meenal Dhall, Satwanti Kapoor
February 2014, 6(2):89-95
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.127751  PMID:24696830
Background: The blood pressure and anthropometric measurements are important for evaluating the health of children, adolescents as well as adults. Aim: The aim is to study the blood pressure and body dimensions and to find out the prevalence of overweight/obesity and hypertension among adults. Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted of all the people belonging to the Punjabi community, residing in Roshanara area and Jaina building in Delhi, for the past 20 years and aged 18-50 years. The men were engaged in transport business and women were mainly housewives. Results: Mean values of all the measurements, that is, height, weight, upper arm circumference, pulse rate, systolic blood pressure (SBP), and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) were higher among males as compared with females, except skinfold thicknesses. Body mass index (BMI) and fat percentage was found to be higher among females as compared with males. There was a significant positive correlation between BMI, fat percentage, and blood pressure both SBP as well as DBP. Odds ratio showed that overweight/obese subjects were more likely to have hypertension than those with normal BMI. Conclusion: Prevalence of prehypertension among overweight/obese suggested an early clinical detection of prehypertension and intervention including life style modification, particularly weight management.
  32 5,416 1,101
REVIEW ARTICLES
The emerging role of outdoor and indoor air pollution in cardiovascular disease
Jacinta C Uzoigwe, Thavaleak Prum, Eric Bresnahan, Mahdi Garelnabi
August 2013, 5(8):445-453
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.117290  PMID:24083218
Outdoor and indoor air pollution poses a significant cardiovascular risk, and has been associated with atherosclerosis, the main underlying pathology in many cardiovascular diseases. Although, it is well known that exposure to air pollution causes pulmonary disease, recent studies have shown that cardiovascular health consequences of air pollution generally equal or exceed those due to pulmonary diseases. The objective of this article is to evaluate the current evidence on the emerging role of environmental air pollutions in cardiovascular disease, with specific focus on the types of air pollutants and mechanisms of air pollution-induced cardiotoxicity. Published literature on pollution was systematically reviewed and cited in this article. It is hoped that this review will provide a better understanding of the harmful cardiovascular effects induced by air pollution exposure. This will help to bring a better understanding on the possible preventive health measures and will also serve regulatory agencies and researchers. In addition, elucidating the biological mechanisms underlying the link between air pollution and cardiovascular disease is an essential target in developing novel pharmacological strategies aimed at decreasing adverse effects of air pollution on cardiovascular system.
  32 6,783 763
Collagen IV in normal skin and in pathological processes
Ana Maria Abreu-Velez, Michael S Howard
January 2012, 4(1):1-8
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.92892  
Context: Type IV collagen is a type of collagen found primarily in the skin within the basement membrane zone. The type IV collagen C4 domain at the C-terminus is not removed in post-translational processing, and the fibers are thus link head-to-head, rather than in a parallel fashion. Also, type IV collagen lacks a glycine in every third amino-acid residue necessary for the tight collagen helix. Thus, the overall collagen-IV conformation is structurally more pliable and kinked, relative to other collagen subtypes. These structural features allow collagen IV to form sheets, which is the primary structural form found in the cutaneous basal lamina. There are six human genes associated with collagen IV, specifically COL4A1, COL4A2, COL4A3, COL4A4, COL4A5 and COL4A6. The aim of this review is to highlight the significance of this protein in normal skin, and in selected diseases. Results: The alpha 3 protein constituent of type IV collagen is thought to be the antigen implicated in Goodpasture's syndrome, wherein the immune system attacks the basement membranes of the renal glomeruli and pulmonary alveoli. In addition, mutations to the genes coding for type IV collagen lead to the Alport syndrome. Furthermore, autoantibodies directed against denatured human type IV collagen have been described in rheumatoid arthritis, scleroderma, and SLE. Structural studies of collagen IV have been utilized to differentiate between subepidermal blistering diseases, including bullous pemphigoid, acquired epidermolysis bullosa, anti-epiligrin cicatricial pemphigoid, and bullous lupus erythematosus. Collagen IV is also of importance in wound healing and in embryogenesis. Conclusions: Pathological studies have demonstrated that minor structural differences in collagen IV can lead to distinct, clinically different diseases.
  32 6,004 1,398
LETTERS TO EDITOR
Western blot: Technique, theory and trouble shooting
Zhi-Qiang Liu, Tahrin Mahmood, Ping-Chang Yang
March 2014, 6(3):160-160
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.128482  PMID:24741558
  30 7,779 3,836
ORIGINAL ARTICLES
Incidence, Patterns, and Factors Predicting Mortality of Abdominal Injuries in Trauma Patients
Mohammad A Gad, Aly Saber, Shereif Farrag, Mohamed E Shams, Goda M Ellabban
March 2012, 4(3):129-134
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.93889  
Background: Abdominal trauma is a major public health problem for all nations and all socioeconomic strata. Aim: This study was designed to determine the incidence and patterns of abdominal injuries in trauma patients. Materials and Methods: We classified and identified the incidence and subtype of abdominal injuries and associated trauma, and identified variables related to morbidity and mortality. Results: Abdominal trauma was present in 248 of 300 cases; 172 patients with blunt abdominal trauma and 76 with penetrating. The most frequent type of abdominal trauma was blunt trauma; its most common cause was motor vehicle accident. Among patients with penetrating abdominal trauma, the most common cause was stabbing. Most abdominal trauma patients presented with other injuries, especially patients with blunt abdominal trauma. Mortality was higher among penetrating abdominal trauma patients. Conclusions: Type of abdominal trauma, associated injuries, and Revised Trauma Score are independent risk factors for mortality in abdominal trauma patients.
  30 4,536 759
REVIEW ARTICLES
Scientific evidence-based effects of hydrotherapy on various systems of the body
A Mooventhan, L Nivethitha
May 2014, 6(5):199-209
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.132935  PMID:24926444
The use of water for various treatments (hydrotherapy) is probably as old as mankind. Hydrotherapy is one of the basic methods of treatment widely used in the system of natural medicine, which is also called as water therapy, aquatic therapy, pool therapy, and balneotherapy. Use of water in various forms and in various temperatures can produce different effects on different system of the body. Many studies/reviews reported the effects of hydrotherapy only on very few systems and there is lack of studies/reviews in reporting the evidence-based effects of hydrotherapy on various systems. We performed PubMed and PubMed central search to review relevant articles in English literature based on "effects of hydrotherapy/balneotherapy" on various systems of the body. Based on the available literature this review suggests that the hydrotherapy has a scientific evidence-based effect on various systems of the body.
  30 12,026 2,341
ORIGINAL ARTICLES
The reliability of the Canadian triage and acuity scale: Meta-analysis
Amir Mirhaghi, Abbas Heydari, Reza Mazlom, Mohsen Ebrahimi
July 2015, 7(7):299-305
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.161243  PMID:26258076
Background: Although the Canadian Triage and Acuity Scale (CTAS) have been developed since two decades ago, the reliability of the CTAS has not been questioned comparing to moderating variable. Aims: The study was to provide a meta-analytic review of the reliability of the CTAS in order to reveal to what extent the CTAS is reliable. Materials and Methods: Electronic databases were searched to March 2014. Only studies were included that had reported samples size, reliability coefficients, adequate description of the CTAS reliability assessment. The guidelines for reporting reliability and agreement studies (GRRAS) were used. Two reviewers independently examined abstracts and extracted data. The effect size was obtained by the z-transformation of reliability coefficients. Data were pooled with random-effects models and meta-regression was done based on method of moments estimator. Results: Fourteen studies were included. Pooled coefficient for the CTAS was substantial 0.672 (CI 95%: 0.599-0.735). Mistriage is less than 50%. Agreement upon the adult version, among nurse-physician and near countries is higher than pediatrics version, other raters and farther countries, respectively. Conclusion: The CTAS showed acceptable level of overall reliability in the emergency department but need more development to reach almost perfect agreement.
  29 2,649 649
Profile of hepatic involvement by dengue virus in dengue infected children
Amrita Roy, Debalina Sarkar, Sohini Chakraborty, Jasodhara Chaudhuri, Pramit Ghosh, Swapna Chakraborty
August 2013, 5(8):480-485
DOI:10.4103/1947-2714.117313  PMID:24083224
Background: The spectrum of liver dysfunction in children with dengue infection is wide and has been associated with disease severity. Aims: This study was undertaken to estimate the range of hepatic involvement in dengue infection in children. Materials and Methods: This study assessed the biochemical and clinical profile of hepatic involvement by dengue virus in 120 children with serologically positive dengue fever (DF), aged 2 months to 14 years. Results: All cases were grouped into DF without warning signs (Group 1), DF with warning signs (Group 2) and severe dengue (Group 3) according to revised World Health Organization 2009 criteria. The spectrum of hepatic manifestations included hepatomegaly (80.8%), hepatic tenderness (46.3%), jaundice (60%), raised aspartate transaminase (AST), alanine transaminase (ALT) and prolonged prothrombin time (41.7%) and reduced serum albumin (56%). Conclusions: Hepatic dysfunction was observed more in Groups 2 and 3. There was 84.4% and 93.75% ALT and AST elevation respectively in Group 2 and 94.5% and 95.9% ALT and AST elevation respectively in Group 3 and fulminant hepatic failure was observed in Group 3. Therefore in a child with fever, jaundice, hepatomegaly and altered liver function tests, the diagnosis of dengue infection should be strongly considered in areas where dengue infection is endemic.
  28 4,754 809
* Source: CrossRef
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