32,075 research outputs found

    Non-Equilibrium Atmospheric Plasma As A Novel Route To Nanomaterial Synthesis And Processing For Biomedical Applications

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    Since last century, the rising interest of value-added and advanced functional materials has spurred a ceaseless development in terms of industrial processes and applications. Among the emerging technologies, thanks to their unique features and versatility in terms of supported processes, non-equilibrium plasma discharges appear as a key solvent-free, high-throughput and cost-efficient technique. Nevertheless, applied research studies are needed with the aim of addressing plasma potentialities optimizing devices and processes for future industrial applications. In this framework, the aim of this dissertation is to report on the activities carried out and the results achieved concerning the development and optimization of plasma techniques for nanomaterial synthesis and processing to be applied in the biomedical field. In the first section, the design and investigation of a plasma assisted process for the production of silver (Ag) nanostructured multilayer coatings exhibiting anti-biofilm and anti-clot properties is described. With the aim on enabling in-situ and on-demand deposition of Ag nanoparticles (NPs), the optimization of a continuous in-flight aerosol process for particle synthesis is reported. The stability and promising biological performances of deposited coatings spurred further investigation through in-vitro and in-vivo tests which results are reported and discussed. With the aim of addressing the unanswered questions and tuning NPs functionalities, the second section concerns the study of silver containing droplet conversion in a flow-through plasma reactor. The presented results, obtained combining different analysis techniques, support a formation mechanism based on droplet to particle conversion driven by plasma induced precursor reduction. Finally, the third section deals with the development of a simulative and experimental approach used to investigate the in-situ droplet evaporation inside the plasma discharge addressing the main contributions to liquid evaporation in the perspective of process industrial scale up

    Associations between computed tomography markers of cerebral small vessel disease and hemorrhagic transformation after intravenous thrombolysis in acute ischemic stroke patients

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    BackgroundHemorrhagic transformation (HT) is common among acute ischemic stroke patients after treatment with intravenous thrombolysis (IVT). We analyzed potential relationships between markers of cerebral small vessel disease (CSVD) and HT in patients after IVT.MethodsThis study retrospectively analyzed computed tomography (CT) data for acute ischemic stroke patients before and after treatment with recombinant tissue plasminogen activator at a large Chinese hospital between July 2014 and June 2021. Total CSVD score were summed by individual CSVD markers including leukoaraiosis, brain atrophy and lacune. Binary regression analysis was used to explore whether CSVD markers were related to HT as the primary outcome or to symptomatic intracranial hemorrhage (sICH) as a secondary outcome.ResultsA total of 397 AIS patients treated with IVT were screened for inclusion in this study. Patients with missing laboratory data (n = 37) and patients treated with endovascular therapy (n = 42) were excluded. Of the 318 patients included, 54 (17.0%) developed HT within 24–36 h of IVT, and 14 (4.3%) developed sICH. HT risk was independently associated with severe brain atrophy (OR 3.14, 95%CI 1.43–6.92, P = 0.004) and severe leukoaraiosis (OR 2.41, 95%CI 1.05–5.50, P = 0.036), but not to severe lacune level (OR 0.58, 95%CI 0.23–1.45, P = 0.250). Patients with a total CSVD burden ≄1 were at higher risk of HT (OR 2.87, 95%CI 1.38–5.94, P = 0.005). However, occurrence of sICH was not predicted by CSVD markers or total CSVD burden.ConclusionIn patients with acute ischemic stroke, severe leukoaraiosis, brain atrophy and total CSVD burden may be risk factors for HT after IVT. These findings may help improve efforts to mitigate or even prevent HT in vulnerable patients

    Characterization of Dutch-Cocoa produced using potash extract from cocoa pod husk as an alkalizing bioresource

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    Abstract Alkalizing agents in the processing of Dutch-Cocoa are often imported from developing countries. This occurs amidst humongous quantities of Cocoa Pod Husk (CPH) that are largely rotting away. This study therefore appraises the inherent alkalizing potentials of CPH, including its physicochemical and safety characteristics in the production of Dutch-Cocoa. CPH was calcined, potash extracted, characterized, and applied in formulation (1% to 5% conc.) in Dutch-production of Cocoa. Quality parameters of the resultant product were analyzed following AOAC procedures (p ≀ 0.05). In addition, rats(n=30) were fed it over a 21-day duration while nutritional and safety indicators were monitored. Sensory properties were also evaluated. The results showed some predominant properties of CPH potash extract [Potassium 35.7%, pH 12.3, alkalinity 15.6 g/100 g CO3] and Dutch-cocoa [protein (15.8% to 16.5%), colour (Hunter L,a,b) 36.9, 8.8, 11.7 light - dark red), dispersibility (1.5 to 2.3), wettability (143.7 s), sedimentation (20.7% to 49.3%)] which favourably compared with commercial variants. Apparent digestibility (AD%) was significant (Protein 86%, Fat 88%, Fiber 66% etc) (p ≀ .0.05). Safety indices exhibited no deleterious effect and the product was adjudged acceptable. Dutch-cocoa produced using CPH-derived-potash as an alternate alkalizing bioresource is feasible, while simultaneously providing an environmentally friendly outlet for CP

    Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation in critical airway interventional therapy: A review

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    IntroductionExtracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) is widely used during refractory cardiac or respiratory failure, and some case reports described ECMO utilization in critical airway interventional therapy.MethodsEligible reports about patients receiving airway interventional therapy under ECMO were retrieved from Web of Science, Embase, Medline, and Cochrane databases up to 1 August 2022.ResultsForty-eight publications including 107 patients who underwent ECMO for critical airway problems met the inclusion criteria. The critical airway problem that was reported the most was tumor-associated airway obstruction (n = 66, 61.7%). The second most reported etiology was postoperative airway collapse or stenosis (n = 19, 17.8%). The main interventional therapies applied were airway stent placement or removal (n = 61, 57.0%), mass removal (n = 22, 20.6%), and endotracheal intubation (n = 12, 11.2%) by bronchoscopy. The median ECMO duration was 39.5 hours. Eleven patients had ECMO-associated complications, including seven cases of airway hemorrhage, one case of arteriovenous fistula, one case of vein rupture and hematoma, one case of foot ischemia, and one case of neuropraxia of the cannulation site. In total, 91.6% of the patients survived and were discharged from the hospital.ConclusionECMO appears to be a viable form of life support for patients undergoing interventional therapy for critical airway problems

    Annual SHOT Report 2018

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    SHOT is affiliated to the Royal College of PathologistsAll NHS organisations must move away from a blame culture towards a just and learning culture. All clinical and laboratory staff should be encouraged to become familiar with human factors and ergonomics concepts. All transfusion decisions must be made after carefully assessing the risks and benefits of transfusion therapy. Collaboration and co-ordination among staff is vital

    The place where curses are manufactured : four poets of the Vietnam War

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    The Vietnam War was unique among American wars. To pinpoint its uniqueness, it was necessary to look for a non-American voice that would enable me to articulate its distinctiveness and explore the American character as observed by an Asian. Takeshi Kaiko proved to be most helpful. From his novel, Into a Black Sun, I was able to establish a working pair of 'bookends' from which to approach the poetry of Walter McDonald, Bruce Weigl, Basil T. Paquet and Steve Mason. Chapter One is devoted to those seemingly mismatched 'bookends,' Walt Whitman and General William C. Westmoreland, and their respective anthropocentric and technocentric visions of progress and the peculiarly American concept of the "open road" as they manifest themselves in Vietnam. In Chapter, Two, I analyze the war poems of Walter McDonald. As a pilot, writing primarily about flying, his poetry manifests General Westmoreland's technocentric vision of the 'road' as determined by and manifest through technology. Chapter Three focuses on the poems of Bruce Weigl. The poems analyzed portray the literal and metaphorical descent from the technocentric, 'numbed' distance of aerial warfare to the world of ground warfare, and the initiation of a 'fucking new guy,' who discovers the contours of the self's interior through a set of experiences that lead from from aerial insertion into the jungle to the degradation of burning human feces. Chapter Four, devoted to the thirteen poems of Basil T. Paquet, focuses on the continuation of the descent begun in Chapter Two. In his capacity as a medic, Paquet's entire body of poems details his quotidian tasks which entail tending the maimed, the mortally wounded and the dead. The final chapter deals with Steve Mason's JohnnY's Song, and his depiction of the plight of Vietnam veterans back in "The World" who are still trapped inside the interior landscape of their individual "ghettoes" of the soul created by their war-time experiences

    Utilização de plasma autĂłlogo no tratamento de Ășlceras da cĂłrnea no cĂŁo : estudo retrospetivo de 30 casos

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    Dissertação de Mestrado Integrado em Medicina VeterinĂĄria. Área CientĂ­fica - ClĂ­nicaO plasma sanguĂ­neo apresenta caracterĂ­sticas semelhantes Ă s da pelĂ­cula lacrimal. ContĂ©m componentes que, quando aplicados topicamente, promovem a regeneração do tecido corneal e asseguram a sua integridade e viabilidade. ColĂ­rios formulados a partir de sangue do paciente sĂŁo relativamente fĂĄceis de obter e normalmente bem tolerados, sendo usados no tratamento de diversas doenças oculares. Em Ășlceras de cĂłrnea complicadas, para alĂ©m de potenciar a cura, diminui ainda a atividade das colagenases envolvidas no processo. O presente estudo teve como objetivo realizar uma avaliação retrospetiva sobre a utilização de plasma autĂłlogo no tratamento de Ășlceras da cĂłrnea em cĂŁes. Para isso, foram avaliados pacientes diagnosticados com Ășlceras corneais no HRVM num perĂ­odo de seis meses. Foi feita a caracterização da amostra, da doença e do tratamento. Para determinar a eficĂĄcia da plasmaterapia, foram comparados os tempos medianos de cicatrização das lesĂ”es superficiais tratadas com e sem plasma. Para defeitos graves (indolentes e profundos), estes tempos foram correlacionados de acordo com a frequĂȘncia da administração. Recorreu-se a uma anĂĄlise de sobrevivĂȘncia para tratamento estatĂ­stico destes dados. A amostra incluiu 30 cĂŁes de 14 raças distintas, maioritariamente braquicĂ©falas (70%). A idade mĂ©dia foi de 6.69 ± 4.03 anos (compreendida entre 0.17-14 anos). 43.33% (n=13) das lesĂ”es eram estromais e 56.67% (n=17) afetaram apenas o epitĂ©lio. Destas, 40% (n=12) responderam ao tratamento e 16.67% (n=5) tiveram um comportamento indolente. A maioria das Ășlceras superficiais nĂŁo era extensa (n=6; 50%) e as profundas eram predominantemente vastas e malĂĄcicas (n=4; 30.77%). O tratamento variou, tendo sido aplicado plasma autĂłlogo em 5 das 12 lesĂ”es superficiais e em todas as graves (n=18). NĂŁo se encontraram diferenças estatisticamente significativas entre os tempos medianos de recuperação das lesĂ”es superficiais tratadas com e sem plasma (Kaplan Meier; p=0.9), nem entre os tempos de cura dos defeitos graves de acordo com a frequĂȘncia de administração (Kaplan Meier; p=0.9). No presente estudo nĂŁo foram observados efeitos adversos decorrentes da utilização de colĂ­rios de plasma autĂłlogo, tendo sido demonstrado ser um produto bem tolerado pelos pacientes. NĂŁo foi possĂ­vel obter resultados estatisticamente significativos que comprovem a sua eficĂĄcia, devido Ă  heterogeneidade da amostra, diferenças nos protocolos terapĂȘuticos adotados e ausĂȘncia de grupos controlo. Estudos adicionais poderĂŁo contribuir para evidenciar os seus benefĂ­cios terapĂȘuticos.ABSTRACT - Use of autologous plasma in the treatment of corneal ulcers in the dog: a retrospective study of 30 cases - Blood plasma presents characteristics similar to those of the tear film. It contains components that, when applied topically, promote corneal tissue regeneration and ensure its integrity and viability. Eye drops formulated from the patient's blood are relatively easy to obtain and usually well tolerated, and are used in the treatment of various ocular diseases. In complicated corneal ulcers, not only enhances healing but also decreases the activity of the collagenases involved in the process. The present study aimed to perform a retrospective evaluation on the use of autologous plasma in the treatment of corneal ulcers in dogs. Patients diagnosed with corneal ulcers at the HRVM were evaluated over a six-month period. Characterization of the sample, disease and treatment was performed. To determine the efficacy of plasmatherapy, median healing times of superficial lesions treated with and without autologous plasma were compared. For severe defects (indolent and deep) these times were correlated according to the administration frequency. Survival analysis was used for statistical treatment of these data. The sample included 30 dogs of 14 different breeds, mostly brachycephalic (70%). The mean age was 6.69±4.03 years (range 0.17-14 years). 43.33% (n=13) of the lesions were stromal and 56.67% (n=17) affected the epithelium only. From these, 40% (n=12) responded to treatment and 16.67% (n=5) had an indolent behavior. The majority of the superficial ulcers were not extense (n=6; 50%) and the deep ones were predominantly wide and melting (n=4; 30.77%). The treatment varied, with plasma being applied to 5 of the 12 superficial lesions and in all (n=18) severe ulcers. Median recovery times for superficial lesions treated with or without plasma were compared (Kaplan Meier; p=0.9) as well as healing times in severe defects according to the frequency of administration (Kaplan Meier; p=0.9). No significant statistical differences were found. In the present study, no adverse effects from the use of autologous plasma eye drops were observed, having been shown to be a product well tolerated by patients. It was not possible to obtain statistically significant results that prove its efficacy, due to the heterogeneity of the sample, differences in the therapeutic protocols adopted and the absence of control groups. Further studies may contribute to evidence its therapeutic benefits.N/

    The treatment effect of rivaroxaban on clot characteristics in patients who present acutely with first time deep vein thrombosis

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    BACKGROUND: The acute vascular disease deep vein thrombosis (DVT) requires oral anticoagulants to prevent progression. Monitoring therapeutic efficacy of direct oral anticoagulants (DOAC), including rivaroxaban, is problematic as no reliable test is available. Advances in rheometry have led to the development of a functional coagulation biomarker using Gel Point (GP) analysis which assesses clot structure formation. The biomarker measures incipient clot formation time (TGP) and quantifies fibrin clot structure in terms of fractal dimension (df).OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to investigate clot structure formation in first time DVT and the effect of rivaroxaban treatment.METHODS: This prospective observational cohort study measured the GP and standard laboratory markers at three sample points: pre-treatment and at 20 and 60 days following 15mg BD and 20mg OD rivaroxaban respectively. RESULTS: Forty DVT patients (mean age 64 years [SD±14.8]; 23 males, 17 female) were recruited. The results show that DVT vs non-DVT patients did not have a significantly different GP profile (df: 1.72±0.06 vs 1.70±0.06 and TGP: 267±68sec vs 262±73sec) with both within the defined healthy index. In addition, rivaroxaban therapy increased TGP to 392s (±135s) after 20 days, and subsequently increased to 395s (±194s) at 60 days but did not significantly increase df (from 1.69±0.05 to 1.71±0.06). CONCLUSIONS: The results indicate in this cohort of DVT patients there was no underlying hypercoagulable effect as determined by gel point analysis. Furthermore, the anticoagulant effect of rivaroxaban prolonged clotting, suggesting a protective effect against clot formation, without significantly reducing clot microstructural properties