68 research outputs found

    Cholesterol Levels and Activity of Membrane Bound Proteins: Characterization by Thermal and Electrochemical Methods

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    The long-term goal of this investigation is to study the effects of increased cholesterol levels on the molecular activity of membrane-bound enzymes such as nitric oxide synthase, that are critical in the functioning of the cardiovascular system. In this particular investigation, we used differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and dielectric thermal analysis (DETA) to study the effect of added cholesterol on melting/recrystallization and dielectric behavior, respectively, of phosphatidylcholine (PC) bilayered thin films. We also used electrochemical methods to investigate the effect of added cholesterol on the redox behavior of the oxygenase domain of nitric oxide synthase as a probe embedded in the PC films. The results show that added cholesterol in the PC films seems to depress the molecular dynamics as indicated by lowered current responses in the presence of cholesterol as well as a slight increase of the transition temperature in the overall two-phase regime behavior observed in PC鈥揷holesterol films. These results are rationalized in the context of the general DSC and DETA behaviors of the PC鈥揷hol films

    Comparison of dynamic monitoring strategies based on CD4 cell counts in virally suppressed, HIV-positive individuals on combination antiretroviral therapy in high-income countries: a prospective, observational study

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    BACKGROUND Clinical guidelines vary with respect to the optimal monitoring frequency of HIV-positive individuals. We compared dynamic monitoring strategies based on time-varying CD4 cell counts in virologically suppressed HIV-positive individuals. METHODS In this observational study, we used data from prospective studies of HIV-positive individuals in Europe (France, Greece, the Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, and the UK) and North and South America (Brazil, Canada, and the USA) in The HIV-CAUSAL Collaboration and The Centers for AIDS Research Network of Integrated Clinical Systems. We compared three monitoring strategies that differ in the threshold used to measure CD4 cell count and HIV RNA viral load every 3-6 months (when below the threshold) or every 9-12 months (when above the threshold). The strategies were defined by the threshold CD4 counts of 200 cells per 渭L, 350 cells per 渭L, and 500 cells per 渭L. Using inverse probability weighting to adjust for baseline and time-varying confounders, we estimated hazard ratios (HRs) of death and of AIDS-defining illness or death, risk ratios of virological failure, and mean differences in CD4 cell count. FINDINGS 47 635 individuals initiated an antiretroviral therapy regimen between Jan 1, 2000, and Jan 9, 2015, and met the eligibility criteria for inclusion in our study. During follow-up, CD4 cell count was measured on average every 4路0 months and viral load every 3路8 months. 464 individuals died (107 in threshold 200 strategy, 157 in threshold 350, and 200 in threshold 500) and 1091 had AIDS-defining illnesses or died (267 in threshold 200 strategy, 365 in threshold 350, and 459 in threshold 500). Compared with threshold 500, the mortality HR was 1路05 (95% CI 0路86-1路29) for threshold 200 and 1路02 (0路91路1路14) for threshold 350. Corresponding estimates for death or AIDS-defining illness were 1路08 (0路95-1路22) for threshold 200 and 1路03 (0路96-1路12) for threshold 350. Compared with threshold 500, the 24 month risk ratios of virological failure (viral load more than 200 copies per mL) were 2路01 (1路17-3路43) for threshold 200 and 1路24 (0路89-1路73) for threshold 350, and 24 month mean CD4 cell count differences were 0路4 (-25路5 to 26路3) cells per 渭L for threshold 200 and -3路5 (-16路0 to 8路9) cells per 渭L for threshold 350. INTERPRETATION Decreasing monitoring to annually when CD4 count is higher than 200 cells per 渭L compared with higher than 500 cells per 渭L does not worsen the short-term clinical and immunological outcomes of virally suppressed HIV-positive individuals. However, more frequent virological monitoring might be necessary to reduce the risk of virological failure. Further follow-up studies are needed to establish the long-term safety of these strategies. FUNDING National Institutes of Health

    Comparison of dynamic monitoring strategies based on CD4 cell counts in virally suppressed, HIV-positive individuals on combination antiretroviral therapy in high-income countries:a prospective, observational study

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    Clinical guidelines vary with respect to the optimal monitoring frequency of HIV-positive individuals. We compared dynamic monitoring strategies based on time-varying CD4 cell counts in virologically suppressed HIV-positive individuals. In this observational study, we used data from prospective studies of HIV-positive individuals in Europe (France, Greece, the Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, and the UK) and North and South America (Brazil, Canada, and the USA) in The HIV-CAUSAL Collaboration and The Centers for AIDS Research Network of Integrated Clinical Systems. We compared three monitoring strategies that differ in the threshold used to measure CD4 cell count and HIV RNA viral load every 3-6 months (when below the threshold) or every 9-12 months (when above the threshold). The strategies were defined by the threshold CD4 counts of 200 cells per 渭L, 350 cells per 渭L, and 500 cells per 渭L. Using inverse probability weighting to adjust for baseline and time-varying confounders, we estimated hazard ratios (HRs) of death and of AIDS-defining illness or death, risk ratios of virological failure, and mean differences in CD4 cell count. 47鈥635 individuals initiated an antiretroviral therapy regimen between Jan 1, 2000, and Jan 9, 2015, and met the eligibility criteria for inclusion in our study. During follow-up, CD4 cell count was measured on average every 4路0 months and viral load every 3路8 months. 464 individuals died (107 in threshold 200 strategy, 157 in threshold 350, and 200 in threshold 500) and 1091 had AIDS-defining illnesses or died (267 in threshold 200 strategy, 365 in threshold 350, and 459 in threshold 500). Compared with threshold 500, the mortality HR was 1路05 (95% CI 0路86-1路29) for threshold 200 and 1路02 (0路91路1路14) for threshold 350. Corresponding estimates for death or AIDS-defining illness were 1路08 (0路95-1路22) for threshold 200 and 1路03 (0路96-1路12) for threshold 350. Compared with threshold 500, the 24 month risk ratios of virological failure (viral load more than 200 copies per mL) were 2路01 (1路17-3路43) for threshold 200 and 1路24 (0路89-1路73) for threshold 350, and 24 month mean CD4 cell count differences were 0路4 (-25路5 to 26路3) cells per 渭L for threshold 200 and -3路5 (-16路0 to 8路9) cells per 渭L for threshold 350. Decreasing monitoring to annually when CD4 count is higher than 200 cells per 渭L compared with higher than 500 cells per 渭L does not worsen the short-term clinical and immunological outcomes of virally suppressed HIV-positive individuals. However, more frequent virological monitoring might be necessary to reduce the risk of virological failure. Further follow-up studies are needed to establish the long-term safety of these strategies. National Institutes of Healt

    Analysis of shared heritability in common disorders of the brain

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    ience, this issue p. eaap8757 Structured Abstract INTRODUCTION Brain disorders may exhibit shared symptoms and substantial epidemiological comorbidity, inciting debate about their etiologic overlap. However, detailed study of phenotypes with different ages of onset, severity, and presentation poses a considerable challenge. Recently developed heritability methods allow us to accurately measure correlation of genome-wide common variant risk between two phenotypes from pools of different individuals and assess how connected they, or at least their genetic risks, are on the genomic level. We used genome-wide association data for 265,218 patients and 784,643 control participants, as well as 17 phenotypes from a total of 1,191,588 individuals, to quantify the degree of overlap for genetic risk factors of 25 common brain disorders. RATIONALE Over the past century, the classification of brain disorders has evolved to reflect the medical and scientific communities' assessments of the presumed root causes of clinical phenomena such as behavioral change, loss of motor function, or alterations of consciousness. Directly observable phenomena (such as the presence of emboli, protein tangles, or unusual electrical activity patterns) generally define and separate neurological disorders from psychiatric disorders. Understanding the genetic underpinnings and categorical distinctions for brain disorders and related phenotypes may inform the search for their biological mechanisms. RESULTS Common variant risk for psychiatric disorders was shown to correlate significantly, especially among attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), bipolar disorder, major depressive disorder (MDD), and schizophrenia. By contrast, neurological disorders appear more distinct from one another and from the psychiatric disorders, except for migraine, which was significantly correlated to ADHD, MDD, and Tourette syndrome. We demonstrate that, in the general population, the personality trait neuroticism is significantly correlated with almost every psychiatric disorder and migraine. We also identify significant genetic sharing between disorders and early life cognitive measures (e.g., years of education and college attainment) in the general population, demonstrating positive correlation with several psychiatric disorders (e.g., anorexia nervosa and bipolar disorder) and negative correlation with several neurological phenotypes (e.g., Alzheimer's disease and ischemic stroke), even though the latter are considered to result from specific processes that occur later in life. Extensive simulations were also performed to inform how statistical power, diagnostic misclassification, and phenotypic heterogeneity influence genetic correlations. CONCLUSION The high degree of genetic correlation among many of the psychiatric disorders adds further evidence that their current clinical boundaries do not reflect distinct underlying pathogenic processes, at least on the genetic level. This suggests a deeply interconnected nature for psychiatric disorders, in contrast to neurological disorders, and underscores the need to refine psychiatric diagnostics. Genetically informed analyses may provide important "scaffolding" to support such restructuring of psychiatric nosology, which likely requires incorporating many levels of information. By contrast, we find limited evidence for widespread common genetic risk sharing among neurological disorders or across neurological and psychiatric disorders. We show that both psychiatric and neurological disorders have robust correlations with cognitive and personality measures. Further study is needed to evaluate whether overlapping genetic contributions to psychiatric pathology may influence treatment choices. Ultimately, such developments may pave the way toward reduced heterogeneity and improved diagnosis and treatment of psychiatric disorders

    Albiglutide and cardiovascular outcomes in patients with type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease (Harmony Outcomes): a double-blind, randomised placebo-controlled trial

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    Background: Glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor agonists differ in chemical structure, duration of action, and in their effects on clinical outcomes. The cardiovascular effects of once-weekly albiglutide in type 2 diabetes are unknown. We aimed to determine the safety and efficacy of albiglutide in preventing cardiovascular death, myocardial infarction, or stroke. Methods: We did a double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled trial in 610 sites across 28 countries. We randomly assigned patients aged 40 years and older with type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease (at a 1:1 ratio) to groups that either received a subcutaneous injection of albiglutide (30鈥50 mg, based on glycaemic response and tolerability) or of a matched volume of placebo once a week, in addition to their standard care. Investigators used an interactive voice or web response system to obtain treatment assignment, and patients and all study investigators were masked to their treatment allocation. We hypothesised that albiglutide would be non-inferior to placebo for the primary outcome of the first occurrence of cardiovascular death, myocardial infarction, or stroke, which was assessed in the intention-to-treat population. If non-inferiority was confirmed by an upper limit of the 95% CI for a hazard ratio of less than 1路30, closed testing for superiority was prespecified. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT02465515. Findings: Patients were screened between July 1, 2015, and Nov 24, 2016. 10鈥793 patients were screened and 9463 participants were enrolled and randomly assigned to groups: 4731 patients were assigned to receive albiglutide and 4732 patients to receive placebo. On Nov 8, 2017, it was determined that 611 primary endpoints and a median follow-up of at least 1路5 years had accrued, and participants returned for a final visit and discontinuation from study treatment; the last patient visit was on March 12, 2018. These 9463 patients, the intention-to-treat population, were evaluated for a median duration of 1路6 years and were assessed for the primary outcome. The primary composite outcome occurred in 338 (7%) of 4731 patients at an incidence rate of 4路6 events per 100 person-years in the albiglutide group and in 428 (9%) of 4732 patients at an incidence rate of 5路9 events per 100 person-years in the placebo group (hazard ratio 0路78, 95% CI 0路68鈥0路90), which indicated that albiglutide was superior to placebo (p<0路0001 for non-inferiority; p=0路0006 for superiority). The incidence of acute pancreatitis (ten patients in the albiglutide group and seven patients in the placebo group), pancreatic cancer (six patients in the albiglutide group and five patients in the placebo group), medullary thyroid carcinoma (zero patients in both groups), and other serious adverse events did not differ between the two groups. There were three (<1%) deaths in the placebo group that were assessed by investigators, who were masked to study drug assignment, to be treatment-related and two (<1%) deaths in the albiglutide group. Interpretation: In patients with type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease, albiglutide was superior to placebo with respect to major adverse cardiovascular events. Evidence-based glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor agonists should therefore be considered as part of a comprehensive strategy to reduce the risk of cardiovascular events in patients with type 2 diabetes. Funding: GlaxoSmithKline

    The genetic architecture of the human cerebral cortex

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    The cerebral cortex underlies our complex cognitive capabilities, yet little is known about the specific genetic loci that influence human cortical structure. To identify genetic variants that affect cortical structure, we conducted a genome-wide association meta-analysis of brain magnetic resonance imaging data from 51,665 individuals. We analyzed the surface area and average thickness of the whole cortex and 34 regions with known functional specializations. We identified 199 significant loci and found significant enrichment for loci influencing total surface area within regulatory elements that are active during prenatal cortical development, supporting the radial unit hypothesis. Loci that affect regional surface area cluster near genes in Wnt signaling pathways, which influence progenitor expansion and areal identity. Variation in cortical structure is genetically correlated with cognitive function, Parkinson's disease, insomnia, depression, neuroticism, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder

    Adjunctive rifampicin for Staphylococcus aureus bacteraemia (ARREST): a multicentre, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial.

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    BACKGROUND: Staphylococcus aureus bacteraemia is a common cause of severe community-acquired and hospital-acquired infection worldwide. We tested the hypothesis that adjunctive rifampicin would reduce bacteriologically confirmed treatment failure or disease recurrence, or death, by enhancing early S aureus killing, sterilising infected foci and blood faster, and reducing risks of dissemination and metastatic infection. METHODS: In this multicentre, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, adults (鈮18 years) with S aureus bacteraemia who had received 鈮96 h of active antibiotic therapy were recruited from 29 UK hospitals. Patients were randomly assigned (1:1) via a computer-generated sequential randomisation list to receive 2 weeks of adjunctive rifampicin (600 mg or 900 mg per day according to weight, oral or intravenous) versus identical placebo, together with standard antibiotic therapy. Randomisation was stratified by centre. Patients, investigators, and those caring for the patients were masked to group allocation. The primary outcome was time to bacteriologically confirmed treatment failure or disease recurrence, or death (all-cause), from randomisation to 12 weeks, adjudicated by an independent review committee masked to the treatment. Analysis was intention to treat. This trial was registered, number ISRCTN37666216, and is closed to new participants. FINDINGS: Between Dec 10, 2012, and Oct 25, 2016, 758 eligible participants were randomly assigned: 370 to rifampicin and 388 to placebo. 485 (64%) participants had community-acquired S aureus infections, and 132 (17%) had nosocomial S aureus infections. 47 (6%) had meticillin-resistant infections. 301 (40%) participants had an initial deep infection focus. Standard antibiotics were given for 29 (IQR 18-45) days; 619 (82%) participants received flucloxacillin. By week 12, 62 (17%) of participants who received rifampicin versus 71 (18%) who received placebo experienced treatment failure or disease recurrence, or died (absolute risk difference -1路4%, 95% CI -7路0 to 4路3; hazard ratio 0路96, 0路68-1路35, p=0路81). From randomisation to 12 weeks, no evidence of differences in serious (p=0路17) or grade 3-4 (p=0路36) adverse events were observed; however, 63 (17%) participants in the rifampicin group versus 39 (10%) in the placebo group had antibiotic or trial drug-modifying adverse events (p=0路004), and 24 (6%) versus six (2%) had drug interactions (p=0路0005). INTERPRETATION: Adjunctive rifampicin provided no overall benefit over standard antibiotic therapy in adults with S aureus bacteraemia. FUNDING: UK National Institute for Health Research Health Technology Assessment

    Quantitative 18F-AV1451 Brain Tau PET Imaging in Cognitively Normal Older Adults, Mild Cognitive Impairment, and Alzheimer's Disease Patients

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    Recent developments of tau Positron Emission Tomography (PET) allows assessment of regional neurofibrillary tangles (NFTs) deposition in human brain. Among the tau PET molecular probes, 18F-AV1451 is characterized by high selectivity for pathologic tau aggregates over amyloid plaques, limited non-specific binding in white and gray matter, and confined off-target binding. The objectives of the study are (1) to quantitatively characterize regional brain tau deposition measured by 18F-AV1451 PET in cognitively normal older adults (CN), mild cognitive impairment (MCI), and AD participants; (2) to evaluate the correlations between cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) biomarkers or Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) and 18F-AV1451 PET standardized uptake value ratio (SUVR); and (3) to evaluate the partial volume effects on 18F-AV1451 brain uptake.Methods: The study included total 115 participants (CN = 49, MCI = 58, and AD = 8) from the Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI). Preprocessed 18F-AV1451 PET images, structural MRIs, and demographic and clinical assessments were downloaded from the ADNI database. A reblurred Van Cittertiteration method was used for voxelwise partial volume correction (PVC) on PET images. Structural MRIs were used for PET spatial normalization and region of interest (ROI) definition in standard space. The parametric images of 18F-AV1451 SUVR relative to cerebellum were calculated. The ROI SUVR measurements from PVC and non-PVC SUVR images were compared. The correlation between ROI 18F-AV1451 SUVR and the measurements of MMSE, CSF total tau (t-tau), and phosphorylated tau (p-tau) were also assessed.Results:18F-AV1451 prominently specific binding was found in the amygdala, entorhinal cortex, parahippocampus, fusiform, posterior cingulate, temporal, parietal, and frontal brain regions. Most regional SUVRs showed significantly higher uptake of 18F-AV1451 in AD than MCI and CN participants. SUVRs of small regions like amygdala, entorhinal cortex and parahippocampus were statistically improved by PVC in all groups (p < 0.01). Although there was an increasing tendency of 18F-AV-1451 SUVRs in MCI group compared with CN group, no significant difference of 18F-AV1451 deposition was found between CN and MCI brains with or without PVC (p > 0.05). Declined MMSE score was observed with increasing 18F-AV1451 binding in amygdala, entorhinal cortex, parahippocampus, and fusiform. CSF p-tau was positively correlated with 18F-AV1451 deposition. PVC improved the results of 18F-AV-1451 tau deposition and correlation studies in small brain regions.Conclusion: The typical deposition of 18F-AV1451 tau PET imaging in AD brain was found in amygdala, entorhinal cortex, fusiform and parahippocampus, and these regions were strongly associated with cognitive impairment and CSF biomarkers. Although more deposition was observed in MCI group, the 18F-AV-1451 PET imaging could not differentiate the MCI patients from CN population. More tau deposition related to decreased MMSE score and increased level of CSF p-tau, especially in ROIs of amygdala, entorhinal cortex and parahippocampus. PVC did improve the results of tau deposition and correlation studies in small brain regions and suggest to be routinely used in 18F-AV1451 tau PET quantification

    Conversion Discriminative Analysis on Mild Cognitive Impairment Using Multiple Cortical Features from MR Images