1,763 research outputs found

    Knowledge, attitudes and practices around health research: the perspective of physicians-in-training in Pakistan

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    <p>Abstract</p> <p>Background</p> <p>Health research training is an essential component of medical education and a vital exercise to help develop physician research skills. This study was carried out to assess the level of knowledge, attitudes and practices towards research amongst a group of Post Graduate Medical Trainees (PGMTs') at Aga Khan University (AKU), Pakistan.</p> <p>Methods</p> <p>A cross sectional health research survey was carried out on all PGMTs' at AKU Pakistan. AKU is a tertiary care health facility which offers residency in 28 specialties and fellowship in 16 programs. Knowledge, attitudes and practices related to health research were assessed using a pretested, structured and validated questionnaire. Health research related practices of the residents were examined using questions graded on Likert scale.</p> <p>Results</p> <p>Mean percentage score ± SD on the knowledge scale was 36.9% ± 20.2 and 47.19% ± 25.18 on the attitude scale. Of 104(55.6%) who had previously participated in research 28(26.9%) had been involved in basic science research only, 62(59.6%) in clinical research and 14(13.5%) had participated in both clinical and basic science research projects. 88(47.1%) planned to pursue a future research career. Those who planned to pursue a future research career had more positive health research attitudes p < 0.001. Limited time (45%), poor research infrastructure (20%) and inadequate research funding opportunities (20%) were the major hurdles faced by PGMTs' to pursue research.</p> <p>Conclusion</p> <p>PGMTs' demonstrate inadequate knowledge, while they have moderate attitudes towards health research. Residency training and research facilities at the institution need to undergo major transformation in order to encourage meaningful research by resident trainees.</p

    An integration of complementary strategies for gene-expression analysis to reveal novel therapeutic opportunities for breast cancer

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    INTRODUCTION. Perhaps the major challenge in developing more effective therapeutic strategies for the treatment of breast cancer patients is confronting the heterogeneity of the disease, recognizing that breast cancer is not one disease but multiple disorders with distinct underlying mechanisms. Gene-expression profiling studies have been used to dissect this complexity, and our previous studies identified a series of intrinsic subtypes of breast cancer that define distinct populations of patients with respect to survival. Additional work has also used signatures of oncogenic pathway deregulation to dissect breast cancer heterogeneity as well as to suggest therapeutic opportunities linked to pathway activation. METHODS. We used genomic analyses to identify relations between breast cancer subtypes, pathway deregulation, and drug sensitivity. For these studies, we use three independent breast cancer gene-expression data sets to measure an individual tumor phenotype. Correlation between pathway status and subtype are examined and linked to predictions for response to conventional chemotherapies. RESULTS. We reveal patterns of pathway activation characteristic of each molecular breast cancer subtype, including within the more aggressive subtypes in which novel therapeutic opportunities are critically needed. Whereas some oncogenic pathways have high correlations to breast cancer subtype (RAS, CTNNB1, p53, HER1), others have high variability of activity within a specific subtype (MYC, E2F3, SRC), reflecting biology independent of common clinical factors. Additionally, we combined these analyses with predictions of sensitivity to commonly used cytotoxic chemotherapies to provide additional opportunities for therapeutics specific to the intrinsic subtype that might be better aligned with the characteristics of the individual patient. CONCLUSIONS. Genomic analyses can be used to dissect the heterogeneity of breast cancer. We use an integrated analysis of breast cancer that combines independent methods of genomic analyses to highlight the complexity of signaling pathways underlying different breast cancer phenotypes and to identify optimal therapeutic opportunities.V Foundation for Cancer Research (Partners in Excellence grant

    An Integrated Approach to the Prediction of Chemotherapeutic Response in Patients with Breast Cancer

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    BACKGROUND: A major challenge in oncology is the selection of the most effective chemotherapeutic agents for individual patients, while the administration of ineffective chemotherapy increases mortality and decreases quality of life in cancer patients. This emphasizes the need to evaluate every patient's probability of responding to each chemotherapeutic agent and limiting the agents used to those most likely to be effective. METHODS AND RESULTS: Using gene expression data on the NCI-60 and corresponding drug sensitivity, mRNA and microRNA profiles were developed representing sensitivity to individual chemotherapeutic agents. The mRNA signatures were tested in an independent cohort of 133 breast cancer patients treated with the TFAC (paclitaxel, 5-fluorouracil, adriamycin, and cyclophosphamide) chemotherapy regimen. To further dissect the biology of resistance, we applied signatures of oncogenic pathway activation and performed hierarchical clustering. We then used mRNA signatures of chemotherapy sensitivity to identify alternative therapeutics for patients resistant to TFAC. Profiles from mRNA and microRNA expression data represent distinct biologic mechanisms of resistance to common cytotoxic agents. The individual mRNA signatures were validated in an independent dataset of breast tumors (P = 0.002, NPV = 82%). When the accuracy of the signatures was analyzed based on molecular variables, the predictive ability was found to be greater in basal-like than non basal-like patients (P = 0.03 and P = 0.06). Samples from patients with co-activated Myc and E2F represented the cohort with the lowest percentage (8%) of responders. Using mRNA signatures of sensitivity to other cytotoxic agents, we predict that TFAC non-responders are more likely to be sensitive to docetaxel (P = 0.04), representing a viable alternative therapy. CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that the optimal strategy for chemotherapy sensitivity prediction integrates molecular variables such as ER and HER2 status with corresponding microRNA and mRNA expression profiles. Importantly, we also present evidence to support the concept that analysis of molecular variables can present a rational strategy to identifying alternative therapeutic opportunities

    Gene Expression Signatures of Radiation Response Are Specific, Durable and Accurate in Mice and Humans

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    Background: Previous work has demonstrated the potential for peripheral blood (PB) gene expression profiling for the detection of disease or environmental exposures. Methods and Findings: We have sought to determine the impact of several variables on the PB gene expression profile of an environmental exposure, ionizing radiation, and to determine the specificity of the PB signature of radiation versus other genotoxic stresses. Neither genotype differences nor the time of PB sampling caused any lessening of the accuracy of PB signatures to predict radiation exposure, but sex difference did influence the accuracy of the prediction of radiation exposure at the lowest level (50 cGy). A PB signature of sepsis was also generated and both the PB signature of radiation and the PB signature of sepsis were found to be 100 % specific at distinguishing irradiated from septic animals. We also identified human PB signatures of radiation exposure and chemotherapy treatment which distinguished irradiated patients and chemotherapy-treated individuals within a heterogeneous population with accuracies of 90 % and 81%, respectively. Conclusions: We conclude that PB gene expression profiles can be identified in mice and humans that are accurate i

    Parallel Evolution under Chemotherapy Pressure in 29 Breast Cancer Cell Lines Results in Dissimilar Mechanisms of Resistance

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    Background: Developing chemotherapy resistant cell lines can help to identify markers of resistance. Instead of using a panel of highly heterogeneous cell lines, we assumed that truly robust and convergent pattern of resistance can be identified in multiple parallel engineered derivatives of only a few parental cell lines. Methods: Parallel cell populations were initiated for two breast cancer cell lines (MDA-MB-231 and MCF-7) and these were treated independently for 18 months with doxorubicin or paclitaxel. IC50 values against 4 chemotherapy agents were determined to measure cross-resistance. Chromosomal instability and karyotypic changes were determined by cytogenetics. TaqMan RT-PCR measurements were performed for resistance-candidate genes. Pgp activity was measured by FACS. Results: All together 16 doxorubicin- and 13 paclitaxel-treated cell lines were developed showing 2-46 fold and 3-28 fold increase in resistance, respectively. The RT-PCR and FACS analyses confirmed changes in tubulin isofom composition, TOP2A and MVP expression and activity of transport pumps (ABCB1, ABCG2). Cytogenetics showed less chromosomes but more structural aberrations in the resistant cells. Conclusion: We surpassed previous studies by parallel developing a massive number of cell lines to investigate chemoresistance. While the heterogeneity caused evolution of multiple resistant clones with different resistance characteristics, the activation of only a few mechanisms were sufficient in one cell line to achieve resistance. © 2012 Tegze et al

    Measurement of the cross-section and charge asymmetry of WW bosons produced in proton-proton collisions at s=8\sqrt{s}=8 TeV with the ATLAS detector

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    This paper presents measurements of the W+μ+νW^+ \rightarrow \mu^+\nu and WμνW^- \rightarrow \mu^-\nu cross-sections and the associated charge asymmetry as a function of the absolute pseudorapidity of the decay muon. The data were collected in proton--proton collisions at a centre-of-mass energy of 8 TeV with the ATLAS experiment at the LHC and correspond to a total integrated luminosity of 20.2~\mbox{fb^{-1}}. The precision of the cross-section measurements varies between 0.8% to 1.5% as a function of the pseudorapidity, excluding the 1.9% uncertainty on the integrated luminosity. The charge asymmetry is measured with an uncertainty between 0.002 and 0.003. The results are compared with predictions based on next-to-next-to-leading-order calculations with various parton distribution functions and have the sensitivity to discriminate between them.Comment: 38 pages in total, author list starting page 22, 5 figures, 4 tables, submitted to EPJC. All figures including auxiliary figures are available at https://atlas.web.cern.ch/Atlas/GROUPS/PHYSICS/PAPERS/STDM-2017-13

    In depth characterisation of the biomolecular coronas of polymer coated inorganic nanoparticles with differential centrifugal sedimentation

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    Advances in nanofabrication methods have enabled the tailoring of new strategies towards the controlled production of nanoparticles with attractive applications in healthcare. In many cases, their characterisation remains a big challenge, particularly for small-sized functional nanoparticles of 5 nm diameter or smaller, where current particle sizing techniques struggle to provide the required sensitivity and accuracy. There is a clear need for the development of new reliable characterisation approaches for the physico-chemical characterisation of nanoparticles with significant accuracy, particularly for the analysis of the particles in the presence of complex biological fluids. Herein, we show that the Differential Centrifugal Sedimentation can be utilised as a high-precision tool for the reliable characterisation of functional nanoparticles of different materials. We report a method to correlate the sedimentation shift with the polymer and biomolecule adsorption on the nanoparticle surface, validating the developed core–shell model. We also highlight its limit when measuring nanoparticles of smaller size and the need to use several complementary methods when characterising nanoparticle corona complexes

    Search for chargino-neutralino production with mass splittings near the electroweak scale in three-lepton final states in √s=13 TeV pp collisions with the ATLAS detector