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  • 1
    ISSN: 1600-0838
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine , Sports Science
    Notes: The purpose of this study was to investigate the viscoelastic properties of tendon structures in humans. Elongation of the tendon and aponeurosis of medial gastrocnemius muscle (MG) was directly measured by ultrasonography, while subjects (n=19) performed ramp isometric plantar flexion up to the voluntary maximum, followed by a ramp relaxation. The relationship between tendon elongation (L) and estimated muscle force (Fm) was fitted to a linear regression, the slope of which was defined as compliance of the tendon structures. The hysteresis was calculated as the ratio of the area within the L-Fm loop (elastic energy dissipated) to the area beneath the load portion of the curve (elastic energy input). The resulting L-Fm relationship was non-linear in form, as previously reported on animal and human tendons in vitro. The mean compliance was 4.5±1.1  ·  10−2 mm/N. However, there was a considerable inter-subject variability (2.9 to 7.2  ·  10−2 mm/N). The Young's modulus, i.e., the slope of the stress–strain curve, was 280 MPa, which tended to be lower than the previously reported values for human tendons. It was also found that the strain of the tendon structures was homogeneously distributed along their length. The mean hysteresis (energy dissipation) was 22.2±8.8%. However, again there was a considerable inter-subject variability (9.7 to 37.2%). The present results indicated that the tendon structures of human MG were considerably compliant and their hysteresis was in accordance with previously reported values.
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  • 2
    ISSN: 1399-3054
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: Seven cDNAs, designated PcExp1 to PcExp7, encoding expansin homologues, were isolated from mature pear fruit and their expression profiles were investigated in ripening fruit and other tissues, and in response to ethylene. Accumulation of PcExp2, -3, -5 and -6 mRNA increased markedly with fruit softening and then declined at the over-ripe stage. Treatment of fruit at an early ripening stage with 1-methylcyclopropene (MCP), an inhibitor of ethylene action, suppressed ethylene biosynthesis, fruit softening and the accumulation of the expansin mRNAs. Conversely, propylene treatment at the preclimacteric stage induced accumulation of the same four expansin genes, as well as ethylene production and fruit softening. The expression patterns correlated with alteration in the rate and extent of fruit softening. The abundance of PcExp1 mRNA increased at the late expanding phase of fruit development and further increased during ripening, whereas PcExp4 mRNA levels were constant throughout fruit growth and ripening. The MCP and propylene treatments had little effect on PcExp1 and PcExp4 expression. PcExp7 was expressed in young but not mature fruit. PcExp4 and PcExp6 mRNA was also detected in flowers. The accumulation of PcExp4, -5, -6 and -7 mRNA was more abundant in young growing tissues, but not in fully expanded tissues, suggesting roles for these genes in cell expansion. These results demonstrate that characteristically, multiple expansin genes show differential expression and hormonal regulation during pear fruit development and at least six expansins show overlapping expression during ripening.
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  • 3
    ISSN: 1600-0765
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: Background:  Recent studies have reported a relationship between obesity and periodontal disease. Obesity is the strongest risk factor for type 2 diabetes, which is, in turn, a risk factor for periodontal disease. An oral glucose tolerance test is necessary to diagnose diabetes; however, no study has examined the relationship between obesity and periodontal disease by taking oral glucose tolerance test results into consideration.Methods:  In all, 584 Japanese women aged between 40 and 79 years old, with at least 10 teeth, underwent health examinations. Body mass index, waist–hip ratio, body fat, and oral glucose tolerance test results were used as independent variables with known risk factors for periodontal disease. Mean probing pocket depth and mean attachment loss were used as the dependent variables.Results:  In all of the analyses, body mass index, body fat, and waist–hip ratio were significantly associated with the highest quintile of mean probing pocket depth, even when adjusted for oral glucose tolerance test results. In the multivariate analysis, the subjects with the highest quartile of body mass index had a significantly higher odds ratio (OR) for the highest quintile of mean probing pocket depth [OR, 4.3; 95% confidence interval (CI), 2.1–8.9; p 〈 0.001], whereas neither impaired glucose tolerance nor diabetes were significantly associated with deep pockets. The relationships between the obesity indexes and mean attachment loss did not reach statistical significance.Conclusion:  Obesity was associated with deep pockets in Japanese women, even after adjusting for oral glucose tolerance test.
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  • 4
    ISSN: 1600-0838
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine , Sports Science
    Notes: The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of resistance training on the tendon properties in knee extensors during 20 days of bed rest. Sixteen men were assigned to the resistance training group (BR-Tr) or the non-training, control group (BR-Con). Leg-press exercises were performed as five sets of 10 repetitions at 90% of maximum load daily for 20 days during bed rest. Before and after bed rest, the elongation of the tendon structures of the vastus lateralis muscle during isometric knee extension was determined using ultrasonography, while subjects performed ramp isometric contraction up to the voluntary maximum, followed by a ramp relaxation. The relationship between estimated muscle force (Fm) and tendon elongation (L) was fitted to a linear regression curve, the slope of which was defined as stiffness. The hysteresis was calculated as the ratio of the area within the Fm–L loop to the area beneath the load portion of the curve. The stiffness decreased significantly after bed rest for BR-Con, but not for BR-Tr. Similarly, the hysteresis increased significantly after bed rest for BR-Con, but not for BR-Tr. These results suggested that the bed rest caused the stiffness of tendon structures to decrease and their hysteresis to increase, and that leg-press training prevents the deconditioning of the tendon structures in knee extensors.
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  • 5
    Electronic Resource
    Electronic Resource
    Copenhagen : Munksgaard International Publishers
    Physiologia plantarum 102 (1998), S. 0 
    ISSN: 1399-3054
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: We have isolated a mitochondrial rps7 gene from sugar beet (Beta vulgaris L. cv. TK81-O). It is present in a single genomic environment, with northern blot analysis showing transcription of this gene. Sequence analysis of RT-PCR-derived cDNA of rps7 showed that three RNA-editing events occurred on rps7 mRNAs. As far as we know, this is the first report of the complete identification of the RNA editing of a mitochondrial rps7 in the angiosperms.
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  • 6
    ISSN: 1399-3054
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Biology
    Notes: The role of APX (ascorbate peroxidase) in protection against oxidative stress was examined using transgenic tobacco plants. The full length cDNA, coding Arabidopsis thaliana L. APX fused downstream to the chloroplast transit sequence from A. thaliana glutathione reductase, was cloned into appropriate binary vector and mobilized into Agrobacterium tumefaciens C58C2. Leaf discs were infected with the Agrobacterium and cultured on medium supplied with kanamycin. The incorporation of the gene in tobacco genome was confirmed by Southern dot blot hybridization. Transgenic lines were generated, and the line Chl-APX5 shown to have 3.8-fold the level of APX activity in the wild-type plants. The isolated chloroplasts from this line showed higher APX activity. During early investigation, this line showed enhanced tolerance to the active oxygen-generating paraquat and sodium sulphite. The first generation of this line, also, showed enhanced tolerance to salt, PEG and water stresses, as determined by net photosynthesis. The present data indicate that overproducing the cytosolic APX in tobacco chloroplasts reduces the toxicity of H2O2.
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  • 7
    ISSN: 1540-8167
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: Introduction: Previous studies have suggested that paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (PAF) of vagal origin often occurs at night and PAF of sympathetic origin occurs during the daytime; however, autonomic tone after spontaneous termination of PAF has not been determined. The aim of this study was to evaluate by heart rate variability (HRV) analysis the relationship between the time of PAF onset and autonomic tone before and after PAF. Methods and Results: Twenty-three patients ( 65 ± 2 years) who underwent 24-hour ambulatory monitoring, had one or more episodes of PAF (〉30 min), and had maintained normal sinus rhythm for 〉60 min before/after PAF were enrolled in this study. Mean duration of PAF was 6.2 ± 1.2 hours. HRV parameters were analyzed in a 10-minutes section at 60 minutes, 20 minutes, and immediately before the onset of PAF and after its termination. PAF began at night in 14 patients (group N) and during the daytime in 9 patients (group D). In group N, the high-frequency (HF) component and low-frequency (LF) component showed a significant decrease after PAF; PAF was preceded by a gradual increase in HF and LF. Changes in the LF/HF ratio, however, did not occur before or after PAF. Conversely, group D showed a significant increase in the LF/HF ratio before PAF and a decrease in LF and the LF/HF ratio after PAF, but no changes in HF. These changes in HRV parameters were not influenced by the duration or termination time of PAF. Conclusion: This study suggests that the autonomic nervous system plays an important role in both the initiation and termination of PAF. Furthermore, the time of PAF onset influences the autonomic tone at the initiation and termination of PAF. (J Cardiovasc Electrophysiol, Vol. 14, pp. 559-564, June 2003)
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  • 8
    ISSN: 1540-8167
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: Connexin43 Expression in DCM. Introduction: Gap junction alterations recently have been implicated in chronic heart failure, but direct evidence between gap junction manifestation in nonischemic dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) is lacking. The current study examines whether qualitative changes or altered distribution of gap junctional connexin43 (Cx43) are related to global ventricular function and ventricular arrhythmia in DCM. Methods and Results: We investigated 31 DCM patients (52 ± 15 years) and 5 control subjects (55 ± 10 years). Expression of Cx43 proteins was qualitatively and quantitatively determined using immunoconfocal microscopy in right ventricular biopsy specimens from each patient. The expression level of Cx43 protein was defined as the proportion of tissue area occupied by Cx43 (percent tissue area) in each test area. Cx43 immunoreactive signal expressed as percent tissue area was not correlated with the change in left ventricular ejection fraction (P = 0.17). Of 31 DCM patients, 23% subsequently developed sustained ventricular tachycardia (VT), which allowed retrospective division of the samples into two groups: non-VT and VT. Left ventricular ejection fraction was comparable in both groups, but the percent tissue area in the VT groups was significantly decreased compared with that of the non-VT groups (P = 0.03). Furthermore, Cx43 protein was distributed heterogeneously in the VT groups (P 〈 0.0001). Conclusion: Heterogeneous reduction of Cx43 protein may result in development of malignant ventricular arrhythmia in DCM.
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  • 9
    ISSN: 1524-475X
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: Aim: This study was aimed to confirm the usefulness of allogeneic cultured dermal substitute (CDS) in the treatment of skin defects after excision of skin cancer. Methods: Eleven elderly patients (mean age of 76.3 year old) with skin cancer were included in this study. Most of the patients had basic disease such as diabetes or ASO. Allogeneic CDS used in the study were produced at Kitasato University. The CDS were applied to skin defects with exposing bone or tendon after oncological surgery, and changed once or twice a week until the open wound became suitable for autologous skin grafting or healed completely. Results: Healthy granulation tissue was formed to cover the exposed bone or tendon in all cases. Only in one case, the treatment with allogeneic CDS was abandoned owing to undesirable infection. In eight cases, appropriate wound beds acceptable for autologous skin graft were prepared. In other two cases, the skin defect became smaller and eventually closed without skin graft. In ten cases with or without skin graft, undesirable scar contracture was not observed over prolonged follow-up. Conclusions: Elderly patients with skin cancer provide reconstructive surgeons with challenging problems when bone or bare tendon is exposed after oncological surgery. Flap transfer might be complicated especially when the patients suffered from a basic disease such as diabetes or ASO. This study has confirmed that the use of allogeneic CDS is a safe and reliable method to achieve wound healing in those high-risk patients.
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  • 10
    Electronic Resource
    Electronic Resource
    Oxford, UK; Malden, USA : Blackwell Science Inc
    Wound repair and regeneration 12 (2004), S. 0 
    ISSN: 1524-475X
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: The authors have developed a CDS by culturing fibroblasts on the two-layered spongy matrix of hyaluronic acid (HA) and atelo-collagen (Col). This CDS is designed to promote wound healing by synergistic effect of fibroblasts and matrix. Both HA and Col molecules seem to function biologically in the process of wound healing. HA molecules play a critical role in several cellular functions such as migration and proliferation by promoting adhesion and disadhesion between the cell and the tissue substrate. Besides providing structural support and strength to the new tissue, Col molecules have a profound effect on the cells within and on its matrix. Col and Col-derived peptides act as chemoattractants for fibroblasts in vitro and may have a similar activity in vivo. Fibroblasts seeded on the Col surface of two-layered spongy matrix were found to attach, proliferate, and release vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) as well as fibronectin. The cryopreserved CDS was found to keep the original potency to release VEGF after thawing followed by re-culturing. Multi-center's clinical research using allogeneic CDS has been proceeded as a national millennium project for regenerative medicine. These products are able to be stored in a freezer and transported to other hospitals in a frozen state. The clinical evaluation involving 180 cases has been already conducted using allogeneic cryopreserved CDS at 30 hospitals across Japan since April 2001. The results obtained in our clinical study suggest that this type of allogeneic CDS is able to provide an effective therapy for patients with severe full-thickness skin defects. These excellent clinical evaluations seem to be closely related to the results obtained in this fundamental study, especially related to the potency of cryopreserved allogeneic CDS to release VEGF and fibronectin.
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