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  • Blackwell Science Pty  (34)
  • Munksgaard International Publishers  (34)
  • Macmillian Magazines Ltd.  (21)
  • 1
    ISSN: 1440-1681
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: 1. Tetramethylpyrazine (TMP) is one of the active principles contained in Ligusticum chuanxiong Hort. (Umbelliferae), a herb that has been used widely in China to treat vascular disorders.2. In an attempt to elucidate the possible mechanisms of action of TMP, the effect of TMP on intracellular calcium concentrations ([Ca2+]i) was investigated in cultured vascular smooth muscle (A7r5) cells using the Ca2+-sensitive dye Fura-2 as an indicator.3. The increase in [Ca2+]i in A7r5 cells produced by vasopressin (1 µmol/L) or phenylephrine (1 µmol/L) was attenuated by TMP in a concentration-dependent manner. Only inhibitors specific to ATP-sensitive potassium (KATP) channels or small conductance calcium-activated potassium (SKCa) channels attenuated the action of TMP (10 µmol/L) on [Ca2+]i. However, blockers of other K+ channels failed to modify the inhibitory action of TMP (10 µmol/L) on [Ca2+]i.4. The action of TMP on membrane potential in A7r5 cells was monitored by the fluorescence of bisoxonol. Tetramethylpyrazine caused a concentration-dependent inhibition of changes in membrane potential elicited by KCl (20 mmol/L) or phenylephrine (1 µmol/L), an effect that was totally reversed by glibenclamide (100 µmol/L) and apamin (100 nmol/L) in combination.5. The results obtained indicate that the decrease in [Ca2+]i in A7r5 cells produced by TMP is mediated mainly by opening of KATP and/or SKCa channels.
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  • 2
    ISSN: 1440-1681
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: 1. Sulphotransferases are a superfamily of enzymes involved in both detoxification and bioactivation of endogenous and exogenous compounds. The arylsulphotransferase SULT1A1 has been implicated in a decreased activity and thermostability when the wild-type arginine at position 213 of the coding sequence is substituted by a histidine. SULT1A1 is the isoform primarily associated with the conversion of dietary N-OH arylamines to DNA binding adducts and is therefore of interest to determine whether this polymorphism is linked to colorectal cancer.2. Genotyping, using polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP) analysis, was performed using DNA samples of healthy control subjects (n = 402) and patients with histologically proven colorectal cancer (n = 383). Both control and test populations possessed similar frequencies for the mutant allele (32.1 and 31%, respectively; P = 0.935). Results were not altered when age and gender were considered as potential confounders in a logistic regression analysis.3. Examination of the sulphonating ability of the two allozymes with respect to the substrates p-nitrophenol and paracetamol showed that the affinity and rate of sulphonation was unaffected by substitution of arginine to histidine at position 213 of the amino acid sequence.4. From this study, we conclude that the SULT1A1 R213H polymorphism is not linked with colorectal cancer in this elderly Australian population.
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  • 3
    ISSN: 1440-1681
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: 1. Fluorescent Ca2+ indicators, such as fura-2/AM and calcium green-1, have become one of the most popular tools for measuring intracellular calcium ([Ca2+]i).2. Electrical stimulation triggers a cascade of events in the cardiac muscle, which results in a [Ca2+]i transient and, eventually, contraction. The events that occur in electrically induced cardiac myocytes mimic the normal physiological events in vivo.3. The electrically induced [Ca2+]i transient represents influx of Ca2+ from outside and mobilization of Ca2+ from the intracellular store and is directly related to contraction. Thus, it is more important to determine the electrically induced [Ca2+]i transient than [Ca2+]i. The [Ca2+]i transient can be easily measured with the spectrofluorescence method using fura 2/AM as the Ca2+ indicator in a single ventricular myocyte preparation.4. We made use of the results of studies on carbachol, tetrandrine and cardiotoxin to illustrate the usefulness of the electrically induced [Ca2+]i transient in the study of actions of cardiac drugs.
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  • 4
    ISSN: 1440-1681
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: 1. The effects of κ opioid receptor stimulation on cardiac rhythm and the underlying signal pathways were investigated in the rat.2. Stimulation of κ opioid receptors with 40–50 μmol/L U50 488H, a selective κ opioid receptor agonist, induced dysrhythmias and increased inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (IP3) production in rat isolated, perfused heart. The pro-arrhythmic effects of U50 488H were abolished by 5 μmol/L nor- binaltorphimine (nor-BNI), a specific κ opioid receptor antagonist.3. The effect of U50 488H on cardiac dysrhythmia and IP3 production were abolished by 1 mmol/L neomycin and streptomycin, phospholipase C (PLC) inhibitors.4. At 1 μmol/L, U50 488H, which itself has no effect on cardiac rhythm and IP3 production, significantly attenuated the potentiating effect of 1 μmol/L noradrenaline (NA) on dysrhythmias, which were induced by low flow in the isolated heart. The effects of U50 488H were abolished by 1 μmol/L nor-BNI. Cytosolic cAMP production was augmented by 1 μmol/L NA and this was significantly attenuated by 1 μmol/L U50 488H.5. At 1 μmol/L, U50 488H also reduced [Ca2+]i oscillations induced by 0.5 μmol/L NA and 0.5 μmol/L forskolin, an activator of adenylate cyclase (AC).6. In conclusion, U50 488H exerted pro- and anti-arrhythmic actions at high and lower concentrations, respectively. The former effect was mediated via the PLC/IP3 pathway, while the latter was mediated via the AC/cAMP pathway.
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  • 5
    ISSN: 1440-1797
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
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  • 6
    ISSN: 1440-1797
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: Backgrounds and Aims:  There is relatively little data on the seroprevalence of Helicobacter pylori in patients undergoing continuous ambulatory peritoneal dialysis (CAPD). This study aims at establishing the seroprevalence of and the factors associated with H. pylori infection in Chinese CAPD patients.Methods:  All CAPD patients from a single dialysis centre were invited to participate in the study. Diagnosis of H. pylori infection was made serologically by the pylori DTect ELISA method. Dyspeptic symptoms were assessed by the Hong Kong Index of Dyspepsia (HKID) Questionnaire. Demographic, clinical and laboratory parameters were correlated with the H. pylori serology results.Results:  One hundred and thirty-six Chinese CAPD patients were included in the study. The mean age of the patients was 61.8 ± 12.5 years with a male to female ratio of 1:1.4. The mean duration of CAPD was 54 ± 42 months. Thirty-five patients (26%) have positive serology against H. pylori. Nineteen patients had a HKID score of 〉16. There was no association between H. pylori seropositivity and dyspeptic symptoms (P = 0.62). Patients who were seropositive for H. pylori were significantly older (64.9 ± 9.5 years vs 60.7 ± 13.2 years, P 〈 0.05) and had lower KT/V-values than patients who were seronegative for H. pylori (1.88 ± 0.3 vs 2.03 ± 0.3, P 〈 0.05). Patients with positive or negative H. pylori serological status did not differ in terms of demographic parameters (e.g. sex, duration of CAPD), clinical factors (e.g. bodyweight, body mass index, hepatitis status, use of H2 antagonists or proton pump inhibitors) and laboratory data (e.g. haemoglobin, serum urea, creatinine, albumin and parathyroid hormone levels).Conclusions:  The seroprevalence of H. pylori infection among Chinese CAPD patients is 26%. Helicobacter pylori seropositivity is not associated with dyspepsia. Older age and lower KT/V-values appear to be associated with the development of H. pylori seropositivity in our dialysis population.
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  • 7
    ISSN: 1442-2042
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: Abstract  Aim: To compare bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) with epirubicin in adjuvant therapy of superficial bladder transitional cell carcinoma, with respect to recurrence, progression and survival. Prognostic factors are also evaluated.Methods: Between October 1991 and September 1999, all patients harboring superficial bladder cancers (Ta or T1) with any of the relevant criteria (stage 〉 a, grade 〉 1, size 〉 1 cm, multiple or recurrent tumors), after complete transurethral resection were randomized to receive either 81 mg Connaught strain BCG or 50 mg epirubicin. Patients with recurrences were eligible to crossover, even repeatedly, until progression. Recurrence, progression and survival were analyzed in relation to initial treatment, patient characteristics and tumor characteristics.Results: There were 209 patients included in the study, 149 men and 60 women. The mean age was 69.9 years (range, 24–92). The BCG group consisted of 102 patients and the epirubicin group contained 107 patients. Final analysis was made at a median follow up of 23, 47 and 61 months for recurrence, progression and survival, respectively. The 10-year Kaplan-Meier estimates for recurrence-free, progression-free and disease-specific survival were 61%, 78% and 80%, respectively, for the BCG group. The corresponding figures were 32%, 74% and 92%, respectively, for the epirubicin group. Time to recurrence differed significantly between two treatment groups (P = 0.0004). Multiplicity increased the risk of recurrence, while grading influenced recurrence, progression and disease specific survival.Conclusions: Bacillus Calmette-Guerin prolonged time to recurrence when compared with epirubicin. Grading was shown to be a universal prognostic factor for recurrence, progression and disease specific survival.
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  • 8
    ISSN: 1399-3038
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: Cow's milk and soy protein allergies are commonly associated with atopic dermatitis (AD) in young children. Amino acid (AA)-based elemental milk formula may improve AD control in these patients. This study investigates the efficacy of AA-based formula in treating young AD patients irrespective of their food allergy status. AD patients younger than 3 yr old were eligible. Sensitization to food allergens was ascertained by skin prick tests and allergen-specific immunoglobulin E (IgE) assay. Patients were then randomly allocated to take either active treatment or pre-existing formulae (placebo) for 6 wk. They were allowed a 6-wk washout period before crossed over to the other intervention for another 6 wk. Fifteen AD patients, with median (interquartile range, IQR) age of 1.4 (0.6–2.6) yr, were recruited. Their median (IQR) SCORAD score was 23.9 (10.5–29.7). Seven of them were sensitized to cow's milk or soybean. Among 11 patients who completed the study, the median changes for all scores and urinary eosinophil protein X (EPX) concentration were not statistically significant. There was also no evidence of carry-over effects for SCORAD and its various components and global health score, except for urinary EPX concentration (p = 0.05). Our results do not support the use of AA-based elemental milk formula in treating young children with AD irrespective of their food allergy status.
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  • 9
    ISSN: 1399-3038
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
    Notes: There is a worldwide belief that the prevalence of asthma and other allergic diseases is increasing but the measures used in many studies are susceptible to systematic errors. We examined the trend of asthma, allergic rhinitis and eczema prevalence in school children aged 6–7 years in Hong Kong from 1995 to 2001 using standardized ISAAC methodology. There were 4448 and 3618 children participating in 2001 and 1995, respectively. The prevalence of life-time rhinitis (42.4% vs. 38.9%, p 〈 0.01), current rhinitis (37.4% vs. 35.1%, p 〈 0.03), current rhinoconjunctivitis (17.2 vs. 13.6%, p 〈 0.01) and life-time eczema (30.7% vs. 28.1%, p = 0.01) increased significantly. There was no significant change in prevalence of life-time asthma, life-time wheeze and current wheeze albeit a significant increase in severe asthma symptoms. We investigated a number of potential risk factors including sex, family history of atopy, sibship size, birth weight, respiratory tract infections, pet ownership and exposure to tobacco smoke. However, the increases in prevalence of rhinitis and eczema could not be entirely explained by the change of prevalence of these risk factors. The odds ratio OR for the study period remained significantly associated with current rhinitis (OR 1.31, 95% confidence intervals CI 1.17–1.46), current rhinoconjunctivitis (OR 1.63, 95% CI 1.41–1.87) and life-time eczema (OR 1.30, 95% CI 1.16–1.45) after adjustment for these confounding variables using logistic regression model. Further study is warranted to elucidate the factors contributing to the observable change in the prevalence of rhinitis in our population.
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  • 10
    Electronic Resource
    Electronic Resource
    Melbourne, Australia : Blackwell Science Pty
    Nephrology 7 (2002), S. 0 
    ISSN: 1440-1797
    Source: Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
    Topics: Medicine
    Type of Medium: Electronic Resource
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