Publications by authors named "Laura Marchi"

38 Publications

Detection of Small Airway Dysfunction in Asymptomatic Smokers with Preserved Spirometry: The Value of the Impulse Oscillometry System.

Int J Chron Obstruct Pulmon Dis 2021 14;16:2585-2590. Epub 2021 Sep 14.

Department of Medicine and Surgery, Respiratory Disease and Lung Function Unit, University of Parma, Parma, Italy.

Purpose: Smoking-induced bronchiolitis with progressive small airway dysfunction (SAD) is a leading cause of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. We investigated the value of using the impulse oscillometry system (IOS) to detect SAD in asymptomatic smokers with preserved spirometry.

Patients And Methods: We included 75 asymptomatic smokers (37 females, mean age 47±12 years, 26±17 pack/year) with preserved spirometry [forced expiratory volume at 1st second (FEV1)/forced vital capacity (FVC) ≥0.70 and normal FVC] and 34 never-smokers (19 females, mean age 42±15 years).

Results: In smokers, pack/years were significantly related to spirometry and IOS parameters (p < 0.05). The values of the fall in resistance from 5 Hz to 20 Hz (R5 - R20) were significantly and inversely related to the values of the ratio of forced expiratory volume in 3 and in 6 seconds (FEV/FEV) (p < 0.05). In addition, the percentage of heavy smokers (≥30 pack/year) with R5 - R20 >0.07 kPa·s·L, considered as IOS index of SAD, but not with FEV3/FEV6 less than a lower limit of normal, a spirometry index of SAD, was significantly higher than that of mild smokers (<30 pack/year) and never-smokers (p < 0.05).

Conclusion: This study demonstrates that IOS has the potential to detect SAD in asymptomatic heavy smokers with preserved spirometry and with FEV3/FEV6 values in the normal range. We confirm that IOS provides parameters which can complement traditional measurements of pulmonary function.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.2147/COPD.S319972DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8449545PMC
September 2021

Catastrophisation, chronic pain and sexuality: a cross-sectional investigation in fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis.

Clin Exp Rheumatol 2021 May-Jun;39 Suppl 130(3):161-169. Epub 2021 Jun 10.

Department of Surgical, Medical and Molecular Pathology, Critical and Care Medicine, University of Pisa, Italy.

Objectives: In the present study we investigate the putative differences in pain catastrophising (PC), pain perception (PP), sexual functioning (SF), satisfaction (SS), and overall quality of life between fibromyalgia (FM) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients as compared to healthy controls (HC).

Methods: Fifty-seven native Italian-speaking female individuals suffering either from FM or RA and thirty-eight healthy female controls (FM = 40; RA = 17; HC = 38) were submitted to a semi-structured interview aimed at assessing PP intensity (Visual Analog Scale; VAS), general health conditions (36-items Short-Form Health Survey; SF-36), PC (Pain Catastrophising Scale; PCS), SF and SS (Index of Sexual Satisfaction; ISS/ Female Sexual Function Index; FSFI).

Results: FM patients had a significantly higher PP both as compared to RA and HC (p<0.002 for both), and higher PC as compared to HC but not as compared to RA patients (p<0.03 and p<0.64). When compared to RA patients and HC, they showed a lower quality of life (p<0.002 for both comparisons), a compromised SF (p<0.003 and p<0.002, respectively) and a lower index of SS with respect to HC (p<0.002). RA patients had higher PP (VAS; p<0.002), lower quality of life and SF as compared to HC (p<0.002 and p<0.003, respectively).

Conclusions: FM and RA patients showed a significantly lower quality of life, SF and SS as compared to HC. PC was significantly related to PP and low quality of life in FM patients while in RA patients it negatively affected quality of life and especially the sexual sphere both when considering SF and SS.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
June 2021

Massive foeto-maternal transfusion: how long are foetal blood cells detectable in the maternal circulation?

Blood Transfus 2021 May 21. Epub 2021 May 21.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Santo Stefano Hospital, AUSL Toscana Centro, Prato, Italy.

View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.2450/2021.0037-21DOI Listing
May 2021

Allergens from Edible Insects: Cross-reactivity and Effects of Processing.

Curr Allergy Asthma Rep 2021 05 30;21(5):35. Epub 2021 May 30.

Department of Biotechnology, University of Verona, Verona, Italy.

Purpose Of Review: The recent introduction of edible insects in Western countries has raised concerns about their safety in terms of allergenic reactions. The characterization of insect allergens, the sensitization and cross-reactivity mechanisms, and the effects of food processing represent crucial information for risk assessment.

Recent Findings: Allergic reactions to different insects and cross-reactivity with crustacean and inhalant allergens have been described, with the identification of new IgE-binding proteins besides well-known pan-allergens. Depending on the route of sensitization, different potential allergens seem to be involved. Food processing may affect the solubility and the immunoreactivity of insect allergens, with results depending on species and type of proteins. Chemical/enzymatic hydrolysis, in some cases, abolishes immunoreactivity. More studies based on subjects with a confirmed insect allergy are necessary to identify major and minor allergens and the role of the route of sensitization. The effects of processing need to be further investigated to assess the risk associated with the ingestion of insect-containing food products.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11882-021-01012-zDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8165055PMC
May 2021

Allergenicity assessment of the edible cricket Acheta domesticus in terms of thermal and gastrointestinal processing and IgE cross-reactivity with shrimp.

Food Chem 2021 Oct 20;359:129878. Epub 2021 Apr 20.

University of Verona, Department of Biotechnology, Verona, Italy. Electronic address:

The allergenic potency of the cricket Acheta domesticus, a promising edible insect, has never been assessed. This work aims to study the immunoreactivity of Acheta domesticus, and its cross-reactivity with the shrimp Litopenaeus vannamei, assessing the effect of cooking and gastrointestinal digestion on their allergenic properties. Different cricket proteins were detected by immunoblotting with shrimp-allergic patients' sera. Tropomyosin was identified as the most relevant IgE-binding protein, and its cross-reactivity with shrimp tropomyosin was demonstrated by ELISA. While shrimp tropomyosin showed scarce stability to gastric digestion, cricket tropomyosin withstood the whole digestion process. The sarcoplasmic calcium-binding protein, specifically detected in shrimp, showed exceptional stability to gastrointestinal digestion. IgE-binding proteins in a model of enriched baked products were partially protected from proteolysis. In conclusion, the ingestion of A. domesticus proteins poses serious concerns to the Crustacean-allergic population. The high stability of tropomyosin may represent a risk of primary sensitization and clinical cross-reactivity.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.foodchem.2021.129878DOI Listing
October 2021

The AFLATOX Project: Approaching the Development of New Generation, Natural-Based Compounds for the Containment of the Mycotoxigenic Phytopathogen and Aflatoxin Contamination.

Int J Mol Sci 2021 Apr 26;22(9). Epub 2021 Apr 26.

Department of Medical and Surgical Specialties, Radiological Sciences and Public Health, University of Brescia, 11 Viale Europa, 25123 Brescia, BS, Italy.

The control of the fungal contamination on crops is considered a priority by the sanitary authorities of an increasing number of countries, and this is also due to the fact that the geographic areas interested in mycotoxin outbreaks are widening. Among the different pre- and post-harvest strategies that may be applied to prevent fungal and/or aflatoxin contamination, fungicides still play a prominent role; however, despite of countless efforts, to date the problem of food and feed contamination remains unsolved, since the essential factors that affect aflatoxins production are various and hardly to handle as a whole. In this scenario, the exploitation of bioactive natural sources to obtain new agents presenting novel mechanisms of action may represent a successful strategy to minimize, at the same time, aflatoxin contamination and the use of toxic pesticides. The Aflatox Project was aimed at the development of new-generation inhibitors of aflatoxigenic spp. proliferation and toxin production, through the modification of naturally occurring molecules: a panel of 177 compounds, belonging to the thiosemicarbazones class, have been synthesized and screened for their antifungal and anti-aflatoxigenic potential. The most effective compounds, selected as the best candidates as aflatoxin containment agents, were also evaluated in terms of cytotoxicity, genotoxicity and epi-genotoxicity to exclude potential harmful effect on the human health, the plants on which fungi grow and the whole ecosystem.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijms22094520DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8123576PMC
April 2021

Genetic Profiling of Idiopathic Antenatal Intracranial Haemorrhage: What We Know?

Genes (Basel) 2021 04 15;12(4). Epub 2021 Apr 15.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Santo Eugenio Hospital, ASL Roma 2, 00100 Rome, Italy.

Intracranial hemorrhage (ICH) is reported in premature infants and rarely, in prenatal life. Fetal ICH can be accurately identified in utero and categorized by antenatal sonography and/or MRI. Infectious disease, maternal drug exposure, alloimmune thrombocytopenia, maternal trauma, coagulation disorders and twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome can cause fetal ICH. However, in many cases, the cause is not identified and a genetic disorder should be taken into consideration. We conducted a review of the literature to investigate what we know about genetic origins of fetal ICH. We conducted targeted research on the databases PubMed and EMBASE, ranging from 1980 to 2020. We found 311 studies and 290 articles were excluded because they did not meet the inclusion criteria, and finally, 21 articles were considered relevant for this review. Hemostatic, protrombotic, collagen and X-linked GATA 1 genes were reported in the literature as causes of fetal ICH. In cases of ICH classified as idiopathic, possible underlying genetic causes should be accounted for and investigated. The identification of ICH genetic causes can guide the counselling process with respect to the recurrence risk, in addition to producing relevant clinical data to the neonatologist for the optimal management and prompt treatment of the newborn.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/genes12040573DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8071218PMC
April 2021

Is Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Effective for People with Hypertension? A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of 30 Years of Evidence.

Int J Environ Res Public Health 2021 03 11;18(6). Epub 2021 Mar 11.

Department of Surgical, Medical and Molecular Pathology, Critical and Care Medicine, University of Pisa, 56126 Pisa, Italy.

: Hypertension is among the most important risk factors for cardiovascular diseases, which are considered high mortality risk medical conditions. To date, several studies have reported positive effects of mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) interventions on physical and psychological well-being in other medical conditions, but no meta-analysis on MBSR programs for hypertension has been conducted. Objectives: The objective of this study was to determine the effectiveness of MBSR programs for hypertension. : A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials examining the effects of MBSR on systolic and diastolic blood pressure (BP), anxiety, depression, and perceived stress in people with hypertension or pre-hypertension was conducted. The PubMed/MEDLINE and PsycINFO databases were searched in November 2020 to identify relevant studies. : Six studies were included. The comparison of MBSR versus control conditions on diastolic BP was associated with a statistically significant mean effect size favoring MBSR over control conditions ( = -2.029; 95% confidence interval (CI): -3.676 to -0.383, = 0.016, = 6; 22 effect sizes overall), without evidence of heterogeneity ( = 0.000%). The comparison of MBSR versus control conditions on systolic BP was associated with a mean effect size which was statistically significant only at a marginal level ( = -3.894; 95% CI: -7.736-0.053, = 0.047, = 6; 22 effect sizes overall), without evidence of high heterogeneity ( = 20.772%). The higher the proportion of participants on antihypertensive medications was, the larger the effects of MBSR were on systolic BP ( = -0.750, = -2.73, = 0.003). : MBSR seems to be a promising intervention, particularly effective on the reduction of diastolic BP. More well-conducted trials are required.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18062882DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8000213PMC
March 2021

Air Trapping Is Associated with Heterozygosity for Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Mutations in Patients with Asthma.

Respiration 2021;100(4):318-327. Epub 2021 Feb 5.

Department of Medicine and Surgery, Respiratory Disease and Lung Function Unit, University of Parma, Parma, Italy.

Background: Alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency (AATD) is a hereditary disorder involving lungs, characterized by low serum concentration of the protein alpha-1 antitrypsin (AAT) also called proteinase inhibitor (PI). Asthma is common in AATD patients, but there are only few data on respiratory function in asthmatic patients with AATD.

Objectives: The aim of the study was to evaluate lung function in asthmatic outpatients with mutation in the SERPINA1 gene coding for AAT versus asthmatic subjects without mutation.

Methods: We performed the quantitative analysis of the serum concentration of AAT in 600 outpatients affected by mild to moderate asthma from the University Hospital of Parma, Italy. Fifty-seven of them underwent the genetic analysis subsequently; they were subdivided into mutated and non-mutated subjects. All the mutated patients had a heterozygous genotype, except 1 (PI*SS). We assessed the lung function through a flow-sensing spirometer and the small airway parameters through an impulse oscillometry system.

Results: The values of forced vital capacity (% predicted) and those of the residual volume to total lung capacity ratio (%) were, respectively, lower and higher in patients mutated versus patients without mutation, showing a significantly greater air trapping (p = 0.014 and p = 0.017, respectively). Moreover, patients with mutation in comparison to patients without mutation showed lower forced expiratory volume in 3 s (% predicted) and forced expiratory volume in 6 s (L) spirometric values, reflecting a smaller airways contribution.

Conclusions: In asthmatic patients, heterozygosity for AAT with PI*MZ and PI*MS genotypes was associated with small airway dysfunction and with lung air trapping.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000513072DOI Listing
February 2021

Bryo-Activities: A Review on How Bryophytes Are Contributing to the Arsenal of Natural Bioactive Compounds against Fungi.

Plants (Basel) 2021 Jan 21;10(2). Epub 2021 Jan 21.

Department of Chemistry, Life Sciences and Environmental Sustainability, University of Parma, Parco delle Scienze 11/A, 43124 Parma (PR), Italy.

Usually regarded as less evolved than their more recently diverged vascular sisters, which currently dominate vegetation landscape, bryophytes seem having nothing to envy to the defensive arsenal of other plants, since they had acquired a suite of chemical traits that allowed them to adapt and persist on land. In fact, these closest modern relatives of the ancestors to the earliest terrestrial plants proved to be marvelous chemists, as they traditionally were a popular remedy among tribal people all over the world, that exploit their pharmacological properties to cure the most different diseases. The phytochemistry of bryophytes exhibits a stunning assortment of biologically active compounds such as lipids, proteins, steroids, organic acids, alcohols, aliphatic and aromatic compounds, polyphenols, terpenoids, acetogenins and phenylquinones, thus it is not surprising that substances obtained from various species belonging to such ancestral plants are widely employed as antitumor, antipyretic, insecticidal and antimicrobial. This review explores in particular the antifungal potential of the three Bryophyta divisions-mosses (Musci), hornworts (Anthocerotae) and liverworts (Hepaticae)-to be used as a sources of interesting bioactive constituents for both pharmaceutical and agricultural areas, providing an updated overview of the latest relevant insights.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/plants10020203DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7911284PMC
January 2021

Performance of the FMF First-Trimester Preeclampsia-Screening Algorithm in a High-Risk Population in The Netherlands.

Fetal Diagn Ther 2021 5;48(2):103-111. Epub 2021 Jan 5.

Fetal Medicine, University Medical Centre, University of Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands.

Objective: The aim of the study was to evaluate the performance of the first-trimester Fetal Medicine Foundation (FMF) screening algorithm, including maternal characteristics and medical history, blood pressure, pregnancy-associated plasma protein A and placenta growth factor, crown rump length, and uterine artery pulsatility index, for the prediction of preeclampsia in a high-risk population in the Netherlands.

Methods: This is a prospective cohort including nulliparous women and women with preeclampsia or intrauterine growth restriction in previous pregnancy. We screened patients at 11-14 weeks of gestation to calculate the risk for preeclampsia. The primary outcome was preeclampsia and gestational age at delivery. Performance of the model was evaluated by area under the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves (AUCs) and calibration graphs; based on the ROC curves, optimal predicted risk cutoff values for our study population were defined.

Results: We analyzed 362 women, of whom 22 (6%) developed preeclampsia. The algorithm showed fair discriminative performance for preeclampsia <34 weeks (AUC 0.81; 95% CI 0.65-0.96) and moderate discriminative performance for both preeclampsia <37 weeks (AUC 0.71; 95% CI 0.51-0.90) and <42 weeks (AUC 0.71; 95% CI 0.61-0.81). Optimal cutoffs based on our study population for preeclampsia <34, <37, and <42 weeks were 1:250, 1:64, and 1:22, respectively. Calibration was poor.

Conclusions: Performance of the FMF preeclampsia algorithm was satisfactory to predict early and preterm preeclampsia and less satisfactory for term preeclampsia in a high-risk population. However, by addressing some of the limitations of the present study, the performance can potentially improve. This is essential before implementation is considered.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000512335DOI Listing
January 2021

Passive immunity in newborn from SARS-CoV-2-infected mother.

J Med Virol 2021 03 10;93(3):1810-1813. Epub 2020 Nov 10.

Paediatrics and Neonatology Unit, Santo Stefano Hospital, AUSL Toscana Centro, Prato, Italy.

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) vertical transmission is an open issue. Recent reports call into question in utero or peripartum viral transmission to the offspring. Few data are available on immunoglobulin G (IgG) and/or IgM in newborns. Insufficient evidence is available regarding passive immunity in neonates born from SARS-CoV-2 infected women. We report a case of a neonate showing the presence of blood specific IgG and the absence of IgM and negative nasopharyngeal swab. He was born from an asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2-infected mother with positive IgG and IgM. The transplacental passage of specific IgG antibodies from the affected mother to the unaffected fetus highlights neonatal passive immunity.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jmv.26609DOI Listing
March 2021

Intra- and Interobserver Reproducibility of Third Trimester Middle Cerebral Artery Pulsatility Index Measurement: A Prospective Cross-Sectional Study.

Fetal Diagn Ther 2020 21;47(3):214-219. Epub 2019 Aug 21.

Fetal Medicine Unit, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Vrije Universiteit Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Background: Middle cerebral artery (MCA) pulsatility index (PI) Doppler in the third trimester of pregnancy is increasingly used.

Objectives: The aim of the study was to investigate intra- and interobserver reproducibility of MCA PI in the third trimester.

Method: Singleton pregnancies between 30+0 and 40+0 weeks were recruited. MCA Doppler velocimetry measurements were performed prospectively, independently, and blindly. Intra- and interobserver reproducibility was assessed by concordance correlation coefficient (CCC) and intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC); Bland-Altman plots were built, and limits of agreement (LoA) were calculated. Results were interpreted according to the cutoff set by the True Reproducibility of Ultrasound Techniques Review.

Results: We enrolled 101 patients. ICCs for intraobserver reproducibility were 0.84 and 0.78 for raw values and percentiles, respectively; CCCs were 0.72 and 0.64. For interobserver reproducibility ICCs were 0.84 and 0.78, CCCs 0.72 and 0.63. According to the chosen criteria, these values show a poor-moderate reproducibility of third trimester MCA PI. Cohen's Kappa coefficients were 0.59 and 0.42, indicating a moderate agreement in discriminating normal and abnormal values.

Conclusions: Intra- and interobserver reproducibility of third trimester MCA PI, as assessed by ICC, CCC, and LoA, is far from satisfactory. This should be taken into account before taking clinical decisions.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000501772DOI Listing
December 2020

Alexithymia and Psychological Distress in Patients With Fibromyalgia and Rheumatic Disease.

Front Psychol 2019 31;10:1735. Epub 2019 Jul 31.

Department of Surgical, Medical and Molecular Pathology and Critical Care Medicine, University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.

Background: Fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) is a chronic rheumatologic disease characterized by widespread musculoskeletal pain and other psychopathological symptoms which have a negative impact on patients' quality of life. FMS is frequently associated with alexithymia, a multidimensional construct characterized by difficulty in identifying feelings (DIF) and verbally communicating them difficulty describing feelings (DDF) and an externally oriented cognitive thinking style (EOT). The aim of the present study was to investigate the relationship between alexithymia, anxious and depressive symptoms and pain perception, in patients with FMS and other rheumatic diseases (RD).

Methods: The sample consisted of 127 participants (M = 25, F = 102; mean age: 51.97; SD: 11.14), of which 48 with FMS, 41 with RD and 38 healthy control group (HC). All groups underwent to a test battery investigating anxiety and depressive symptoms (HADS), pain (VAS; QUID-S/-A) and alexithymia (TAS-20).

Results: A high prevalence of alexithymia (TAS ≥ 61) was found in FMS (47.9%) and RD (41.5%) patients, compared to the HC group (2.6%). FMS patients showed significant higher scores than HC on DIF, DDF, EOT, anxiety and depression. The clinical sample, FMS and RD groups combined ( = 89), alexithymic patients (AL, = 40) exhibited higher scores in pain and psychological distress compared to non-alexithymic patients (N-AL, = 34). Regression analysis found no relationship between alexithymia and pain in AL, meanwhile pain intensity was predicted by anxiety in N-AL.

Conclusion: While increasing clinical symptoms (pain intensity and experience, alexithymia, anxiety, and depression) in patients with fibromyalgia or rheumatic diseases, correlations were found on the one side, between alexithymia and psychological distress, on the other side, between pain experience and intensity. Meanwhile, when symptoms of psychological distress and alexithymia were subthreshold, correlations with pain experience and intensity became stronger.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2019.01735DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6685004PMC
July 2019

Is the protein profile of pig Longissimus dorsi affected by gender and diet?

J Proteomics 2019 08 2;206:103437. Epub 2019 Jul 2.

Interdepartmental Center for Safety, Technologies and Innovation in Agrifood (SITEIA.PARMA), University of Parma, Parma, Italy; Department of Food and Drug, University of Parma, Parma, Italy; Institute of Biophysics, CNR, Pisa, Italy. Electronic address:

The impact of gender and diet on the proteome of Longissimus dorsi was addressed by 2D-PAGE analysis of male and female pigs, fed with a barley-based control diet and a diet enriched with extruded linseed and plant extracts. No statistically significant difference in protein number between female and male samples was found. Furthermore, PCA excluded gender-dependent protein clusters. For both the control and enriched diet, several spots exhibited at least a 1.5-fold intensity difference, but none showed a statistically relevant variation. Protein profiles PCA for both diets indicated that the first two principal components account up to 47% of total variance, with two diet-dependent separated clusters. Among 176 common spots, 29 exhibited >1.5 fold change, mostly more abundant in the control diet. PMF identified 14 distinct proteins, including myofibrillar proteins, glycolytic enzymes and myoglobin, thus suggesting a diet-dependent meat quality. A statistically significant increase in carbonylated proteins of enriched diet samples was detected using the 2,4-dinitrophenylhydrazine method but not using fluorescein-5-thiosemicarbazide-labeled bands. ROS induction and DNA oxidative damage, detected in a human cell line exposed to digested meat from both diets, further support the notion that the enriched diet does not protect against oxidative stress. SIGNIFICANCE: The comparison of the protein profile of female and male Longissimus dorsi from pigs fed by a control diet and a diet enriched with polyphenols, indicate no gender effect, whereas diet affects the abundance of several proteins, possibly linked to meat quality. Protein carbonylation was statistically higher in meat from the enriched diet, suggesting that polyphenols at the concentration present in the diet did not exert a protective effect against oxidation.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jprot.2019.103437DOI Listing
August 2019

Personality Traits in Fibromyalgia (FM): Does FM Personality Exists? A Systematic Review.

Clin Pract Epidemiol Ment Health 2018 31;14:263. Epub 2018 Oct 31.

Department of Surgical, Medical and Molecular Pathology, Critical and Care Medicine, University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.

View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.2174/1745017901814010263DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6407648PMC
October 2018

Defense mechanisms in cancer patients: a systematic review.

J Psychosom Res 2018 12 29;115:76-86. Epub 2018 Oct 29.

Department of Surgical, Medical and Molecular Pathology, Critical and Care Medicine, University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.

The importance of defense mechanisms in cancer progression and adaptation have been largely observed. However, few studies referred to the generally accepted hierarchical organization of defenses and used validated measurements for defensive assessment. In this systematic review, we investigated the whole hierarchy of defense mechanisms and how they associate with various psychological aspects in cancer patients. A literature search was conducted using electronic databases. Among 1570 records published from 1990 to date, only 15 articles met inclusion criteria. Findings related to cancer patients' defensive functioning and its relations with other physical and psychological variables were extracted. A general consistency emerges on the role of defense mechanisms in cancer progression and recovery. Following the hierarchical organization of defenses, higher physical and emotional functioning emerged as being associated with High-adaptive defenses, while Mental Inhibition defenses, in particular repression, promote psychosomatic symptoms, passive decisional preferences and worse physical and emotional health. Disavowal defenses foster lower anxiety and higher emotional functioning by denying anxiety about death. Image distortion defenses, including both Minor and Major image-distorting defenses, were more frequent in cancer patients than in control groups and finally, Action defenses predicted sleep disturbance and lower survival probability. The early detection of maladaptive defensive functioning may foster appropriate psychotherapeutic intervention and prevent worsening of the illness. Further investigations are required to replicate these findings and highlight associations between defense mechanisms and various aspects of mental functioning in cancer patients.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jpsychores.2018.10.016DOI Listing
December 2018

Screening for Common Fetal Trisomies in Twin Pregnancies: First-Trimester Combined, Cell-Free DNA, or Both?

Fetal Diagn Ther 2019 22;46(4):217-222. Epub 2018 Nov 22.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology "L. Mangiagalli," Fondazione Ca' Granda Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico, Milan, Italy.

Objective: To examine the distribution of risks for fetal trisomies after first-trimester combined screening in twins and to investigate different strategies for clinical implementation of cell-free DNA (cfDNA) testing.

Methods: We retrospectively analyzed all twin pregnancies undergoing first-trimester combined screening over a 10 years' period. The population was stratified according to various risk cut-offs, and we examined different screening strategies for implementation of cfDNA testing in terms of impact on invasive testing rate, cfDNA test failure rate, and economic costs.

Results: We included 572 twin pregnancies: 480 (83.92%) dichorionic and 92 (16.08%) monochorionic. Performing a first-line combined screening and offering cfDNA testing to the group with a risk between 1 in 10 and 1 in 1,000, would lead to an invasive testing rate of 2.45%, and cfDNA testing would be performed in 22.20% of the population. This strategy would be cost-neutral compared to universal combined screening alone.

Conclusions: First-trimester combined screening results can be used to stratify twin pregnancies into different risk categories and select those that could be offered cfDNA testing. A contingent screening strategy would substantially decrease the need for invasive testing in twins and it would be cost-neutral compared to combined testing alone.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000494055DOI Listing
March 2020

Isolated fetal echogenic bowel in a retrospective cohort: The role of infection screening.

Eur J Obstet Gynecol Reprod Biol 2018 Dec 9;231:136-141. Epub 2018 Oct 9.

Fetal Medicine Unit, Azienda Ospedaliero-Universitaria Careggi, Florence, Italy. Electronic address:

Objective: Fetal echogenic bowel (FEB) is an ultrasonographic marker of fetal infection. We aimed to determine the utility of infection screening when FEB is isolated.

Study Design: Retrospective observational study of isolated FEB cases between 2006-2014. Infection screening included toxoplasmosis, rubella, syphilis, cytomegalovirus (CMV), herpes simplex virus and parvovirus B19. Fetal karyotyping, screening for cystic fibrosis (CF) and follow-up scans were also offered, according to international standards. Incidence of infection and 95% confidence interval (CI) were calculated.

Results: 148 patients with 154 fetuses were included. 4.7% of mothers developed acute infection: four patients developed CMV infection (2.7%, 95% CI 1.1-6.9%), in two fetuses infection was confirmed with amniocentesis and pregnancies were terminated; Parvovirus B19 infection was detected in 2 patients (1.4%, 95% CI 0.4-5.0) and confirmed in one fetus, which developed anemia; there was one toxoplasmosis maternal infection (0.7%, 95% CI 0.1-3.8%) treated with spyramicin, whose fetus was not infected. Percentage of chromosomal/genetic abnormalities was 3.2%, CF 1.3%, intra-amniotic bleeding 1.3%, FGR 34% and other ultrasonographic abnormalities at follow-up scans 18%.

Conclusions: The association between isolated FEB and fetal infection is uncommon (1.9% in our population). CMV maternal infection screening is supported by our findings, whereas screening for other infections needs to be further investigated.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ejogrb.2018.10.017DOI Listing
December 2018

Cardiovascular Hemodynamic Changes After Antenatal Corticosteroids in Growth Restricted and Appropriate for Gestational Age Fetuses.

Ultraschall Med 2020 Jun 26;41(3):292-299. Epub 2018 Oct 26.

Department of Obstetrics, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Netherlands.

Purpose:  To investigate hemodynamic effects after antenatal corticosteroids (ACS) administration in appropriate for gestational age (AGA) and early growth restricted (GR) fetuses by measurement of Doppler cardiovascular function parameters.

Materials And Methods:  Prospective cohort study. AGA and GR singleton pregnancies receiving ACS for fetal lung maturation between 24 + 0-33 + 6 weeks were enrolled. Feto-placental vascular hemodynamics were studied by: umbilical artery (UA) pulsatility index (PI), middle cerebral artery (MCA) PI, renal artery (RenA) PI. Cardiac function was evaluated by ductus venosus (DV) PI and by echocardiographic parameters: E to A wave ratios (E/A) and mitral and tricuspid annular plane systolic excursion (MAPSE and TAPSE) for diastolic function, left and right myocardial performance index (MPI) for overall (diastolic and systolic) function. A single operator performed all the measurements at 3 different time points (E): E0 before or within 4 hours of ACS administration (baseline examination), E1 24-48 hours after the first dose and E2 7 days after the second dose of ACS. The values were expressed as z-scores. Pairwise comparisons with paired t-test were performed to compare measurements before and after exposure to ACS.

Results:  25 AGA and 20 GR fetuses (mean gestational age: 31 + 1 and 30 + 6, respectively) were included in the analysis. In the AGA group ACS administration was associated with a significant reduction in UA PI. In the GR fetuses ACS temporarily (E0-E1) restored UA-end diastolic flow (EDF) in 6 of 9 fetuses with A/R-EDF ("Return of EDF phenomenon") and produced a significant increase (worsening) in right MPI (both in E1-E2 and in E0-E2).

Conclusion:  ACS administration is associated with UA vasodilation in both AGA and GR fetuses and with an increase in right MPI in the latter group. This suggests a worsening in cardiac function in GR fetuses.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1055/a-0654-4824DOI Listing
June 2020

Personality Traits in Fibromyalgia (FM): Does FM Personality Exists? A Systematic Review.

Clin Pract Epidemiol Ment Health 2018 28;14:223-232. Epub 2018 Sep 28.

Department of Surgical, Medical and Molecular Pathology, Critical and Care Medicine, University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.

Introduction: Fibromyalgia (FM) is the second most common rheumatic disease with many effects on patient's quality of life. It has been described as a chronic condition characterized by widespread musculo-skeletal pain, sleep disorders and prominent fatigue. Regarding the role of personality factors in fibromyalgia, researchers have focused both on personality traits and psychopathological aspects showing inconsistent results. In particular, several studies have examined the role of alexithymia in FM patients, a trait of personality characterized by difficulty in identification, recognition and description of emotions and feelings, while others have focused on a specific type of personality, such as type D personality (distressed personality). Other studies investigated personality in FM patients referring to Cloninger's model, a psychobiological model of personality that includes both temperamental and character dimensions of personality. Analyzing scientific literature on this subject seems well suited to provide a critical review of the latest studies and their results.

Methods: The method used for this review satisfies the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Review and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA). We identified PsycInfo and PubMed as databases for our research.

Results: Personality is studied under many aspects and a reference model is not always present. Many studies underline high levels of alexithymia and type D personality in FM patients but when depression is controlled, these results do not differ from those of healthy controls.

Conclusion: Studies that use a comprehensive model of personality present a different theoretical approach and use alternatively the Big-Five model, Eysenck's and Cloninger's models. The use of a comprehensive model of personality and the control of psychopathological disorders, such as anxiety and depression, seem to be very relevant for a better understanding of a specific personality profile associated with fibromyalgia.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.2174/1745017901814010223DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6166394PMC
September 2018

Potentially traumatic events, post-traumatic stress disorder and post-traumatic stress spectrum in patients with fibromyalgia.

Clin Exp Rheumatol 2019 Jan-Feb;37 Suppl 116(1):39-43. Epub 2018 Apr 24.

Psychiatric Clinic, Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, University of Pisa, Italy.

Objectives: Fibromyalgia (FM) is defined as a severe, chronic, non-articular rheumatic condition characterised by widespread musculoskeletal pain, hyperalgesia and generalised tender points, in the absence of inflammatory or structural musculoskeletal abnormalities. Pain is the predominant symptom, allodynia and hyperalgesia are common signs. Extreme fatigue, impaired cognition and non-restorative sleeping difficulties coexist in addition to other somatic symptoms. Several studies suggest there is a meaningful relationship between FM and the psychological symptoms of depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). PTSD is a mental disorder that can develop after a person has been exposed to a traumatic event, characterised by a specific set of symptoms including re-experiencing of the event, avoidance and numbing and arousal. The present study investigates the impact of lifetime potentially traumatic events, including losses, and of post-traumatic stress symptoms on the severity of illness in patients with fibromyalgia (FM).

Methods: Sixty-one patients with FM, diagnosed according to the American College of Rheumatology criteria, were consecutively enrolled at the Unit of Rheumatology, University of Pisa, Italy. Assessments included: the SCID-5 and the Trauma and Loss Spectrum Self-Report (TALS-SR) lifetime version.

Results: 21.3% of the subjects (n=13) met the criteria for "partial" PTSD: 57.4% criterion B, 42.6% criterion C, 31.1 criterion D and 44.3% criterion E. Fibromyalgia patients without PTSD reported significantly lower scores in all domains compared to the patients with partial PTSD, the latter ones reporting significantly lower scores in all domains compared to full PTSD with the exception of domain I. In particular, these differences were noticeable in Domain VI and Domain VIII.

Conclusions: The results of the study show that fibromyalgic patients with PTSD report more potentially traumatic events, avoidance symptoms, numbing, arousal, maladaptive coping and personality characteristics compared to patients with partial or without PTSD; these results could indicate that loss and/or trauma events represent a risk factor for the development of symptoms of FM in genetically predisposed individuals.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
May 2019

Epigenetic modifications preserve the hyperaccumulator Noccaea caerulescens from Ni geno-toxicity.

Environ Mol Mutagen 2018 07 15;59(6):464-475. Epub 2018 Apr 15.

Department of Chemistry, Life Sciences and Environmental Sustainability, University of Parma, Parco Area delle Scienze 11/a, Parma, 43124, Italy.

The Ni hyperaccumulator Noccaea caerulescens has adapted to live in a naturally stressed environment, evolving a complex pattern of traits to cope with adverse conditions. Evidence is accumulating regarding the important role of epigenetic modifications in regulating plant responses to stress. In this study, we present data from the natural "open-field" adaptation of the Ni hyperaccumulator N. caerulescens to serpentine soil and provide the first evidence of the involvement of epigenetic changes in response to the high Ni content present in plant leaves. The alkaline comet assay revealed the integrity of the nuclei of leaf cells of N. caerulescens grown in a Ni-rich environment, while in the non-tolerant Arabidopsis thaliana exposed to Ni, the nuclei were severely damaged. DNA of N. caerulescens plants grown in situ were considerably hyper-methylated compared to A. thaliana plants exposed to Ni. In addition, qRT-PCR revealed that N. caerulescens MET1, DRM2, and HDA8 genes involved in epigenetic DNA and histone modification were up-regulated in the presence of high Ni content in leaves. Such epigenetic modifications may constitute a defense strategy that prevents genome instability and direct damage to the DNA structure by Ni ion, enabling plants to survive in an extreme environment. Further studies will be necessary to analyze in detail the involvement of DNA methylation and other epigenetic mechanisms in the complex process of metal hyperaccumulation and plants' adaptive response. Environ. Mol. Mutagen. 59:464-475, 2018. © 2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/em.22191DOI Listing
July 2018

Claimed effects, outcome variables and methods of measurement for health claims on foods related to the gastrointestinal tract proposed under regulation (EC) 1924/2006.

Int J Food Sci Nutr 2018 Nov 29;69(7):771-804. Epub 2018 Jan 29.

a Department of Food and Drugs, The Laboratory of Phytochemicals in Physiology , University of Parma , Parma , Italy.

Most of the requests of authorisation to the use of health claims pursuant to Regulation EC 1924/2006 related to the gastrointestinal (GI) tract have received a negative opinion by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), mainly because of an insufficient substantiation of the claimed effect (CE). The present manuscript refers to the collection, collation and critical analysis of outcome variables (OVs) and methods of measurement (MMs) related to the GI tract compliant with Regulation 1924/2006. The critical evaluation of OVs and MMs was based on the literature review, with the final aim of defining their appropriateness in the context of a specific CE. The results obtained are relevant for the choice of the best OVs and MMs to be used in randomised controlled trials aimed to substantiate the claims on the GI tract. Moreover, the results can be used by EFSA for updating the guidance for the scientific requirements of such health claims.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09637486.2018.1427220DOI Listing
November 2018

Intraobserver and interobserver reproducibility of third trimester uterine artery pulsatility index.

Prenat Diagn 2017 12 8;37(12):1198-1202. Epub 2017 Nov 8.

Unit of Fetal Medicine and Diagnosis, Department for Women and Child Health, Careggi University Hospital, University of Florence, Florence, Italy.

Objectives: The primary aim of the study was to investigate intraobserver and interobserver reproducibility of uterine artery (UtA) pulsatility index (PI) in the third trimester of pregnancy. The secondary aim of the study was to examine whether high maternal body mass index (BMI) or gestational age (GA) influence the reliability of this measurement.

Methods: Singleton pregnancies in women with known BMI were recruited between 30 and 40  weeks. UtA PI Doppler measurements were performed prospectively, independently, and blindly by 2 Fetal Medicine Foundation-accredited operators. Intraobserver and interobserver reproducibility was assessed by concordance correlation coefficient (CCC) and intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC); Bland-Altman plots were built and limits of agreement (LoA) were calculated. The analysis was performed for both raw numbers and percentiles. To estimate the intraoperator and interoperator agreement in defining normal and pathological measurements, the assessments were divided in 2 categories-UtA PI <95th percentile/ ≥95th percentile-and Cohen's kappa coefficients were calculated. Results were interpreted according to the cutoffs reported by the True Reproducibility of Ultrasound Techniques review. Correlation between maternal BMI and GA and accuracy of UtA measurements was studied with Spearman's correlation coefficient.

Results: Measurements were available in 101 women. For intraobserver reproducibility, ICCs and CCCs were calculated for raw values and percentiles and were 0.912 and 0.835, and 0.837 and 0.716, respectively. For interobserver reproducibility, ICCs and CCCs were 0.809 and 0.732, and 0.677 and 0.576, respectively. This indicates a poor-moderate reproducibility of third trimester UtA PI. LoA were also wide (from a minimum of -0.30-0.35 to a maximum of -0.53-0.62). Cohen's kappa coefficients were 0.478 and 0.418, showing a moderate intraoperator and interoperator agreement in distinguishing between normal and pathological values. No correlation was found between maternal BMI and GA and reproducibility of the measurements.

Conclusions: Intraobserver and interobserver reproducibility of third trimester UtA PI as assessed by ICC, CCC, and LoA is only moderate-poor. The agreement between operators in defining pathological and normal measurements is moderate.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/pd.5163DOI Listing
December 2017

E-cigarettes induce toxicological effects that can raise the cancer risk.

Sci Rep 2017 05 17;7(1):2028. Epub 2017 May 17.

Department of Pharmacy and Biotechnology, Alma Mater Studiorum-University of Bologna, Via Irnerio 48, 40126, Bologna, Italy.

Electronic cigarettes (e-cigs) are devices designed to deliver nicotine in a vaping solution rather than smoke and without tobacco combustion. Perceived as a safer alternative to conventional cigarettes, e-cigs are aggressively marketed as lifestyle-choice consumables, thanks to few restrictions and a lack of regulatory guidelines. E-cigs have also gained popularity among never-smokers and teenagers, becoming an emergent public health issue. Despite the burgeoning worldwide consumption of e-cigs, their safety remains largely unproven and it is unknown whether these devices cause in vivo toxicological effects that could contribute to cancer. Here we demonstrate the co-mutagenic and cancer-initiating effects of e-cig vapour in a rat lung model. We found that e-cigs have a powerful booster effect on phase-I carcinogen-bioactivating enzymes, including activators of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and increase oxygen free radical production and DNA oxidation to 8-hydroxy-2'-deoxyguanosine. Furthermore, we found that e-cigs damage DNA not only at chromosomal level in peripheral blood, such as strand breaks in leucocytes and micronuclei formation in reticulocytes, but also at gene level such as point mutations in urine. Our results demonstrate that exposure to e-cigs could endanger human health, particularly among younger more vulnerable consumers.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-017-02317-8DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5435699PMC
May 2017

Long-term liquid storage and reproductive evaluation of an innovative boar semen extender (Formula12) containing a non-reducing disaccharide and an enzymatic agent.

Anim Reprod Sci 2017 May 24;180:10-16. Epub 2017 Feb 24.

Department of Veterinary Science, University of Parma, Via del Taglio, 10, 43126 Parma, Italy.

There are no reports of saccharolytic enzymes being used in the preparation of formulations for animal semen extenders. In the present study, the use of an innovative semen extender (Formula12) in the long-term liquid storage of boar semen at 17°C was evaluated. The formulation included use of a disaccharide (sucrose) as the energy source precursor coupled to an enzymatic agent (invertase). The innovative extender was evaluated and compared in vitro to a commercial extender (Vitasem LD) for the following variables: Total Motility (TM), Forward Progressive Motility (FPM), sperm morphology, membrane integrity, acrosome integrity, and chromatin instability. Boar sperm diluted in Formula12 and stored for 12 days at 17°C maintained a commercially acceptable FPM (>70%). Using the results from the in vitro study, an AI field trial was performed. A total of 170 females were inseminated (135 with Formula12 and 35 with Vitasem LD). The pregnancy rates were 97.8% compared with 91.4%, and the farrowing rates were 96.3% compared with 88.6% when Formula12 and Vitasem LD were used, respectively. The mean number of piglets born/sow were 14.92±0.46 compared with 13.83±0.70, and the number of piglets born alive/sow were 14.07±0.46 compared with 12.12±0.70 (P<0.05). The results obtained in this study demonstrated that use of the innovative concept to provide a precursor of glucose and fructose as energy sources for an enzymatic agent in an extender allowed for meeting the metabolic requirements of boar sperm during storage at 17°C. It is suggested that there was a beneficial effect on fertilizing capacity of boar sperm in the female reproductive tract with use of these technologies.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.anireprosci.2017.02.007DOI Listing
May 2017

Intra- and inter-observer reproducibility and generalizability of first trimester uterine artery pulsatility index by transabdominal and transvaginal ultrasound.

Prenat Diagn 2016 Dec 6;36(13):1261-1269. Epub 2016 Dec 6.

Department of Fetal Medicine, Obstetrics and Gynecology, University Medical Center Groningen, University of Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands.

Objectives: The primary aim of the study was to assess intra-observer and inter-observer reproducibility and generalizability (general reliability) of first trimester Doppler measurements of uterine arteries (UtA) performed both transabdominally (TA) and transvaginally (TV). Secondary aims were to investigate whether maternal BMI and acquisition modality (transabdominal or transvaginal) affect feasibility and reliability of UtA Doppler evaluation.

Methods: Singleton pregnancies between 11 and 13 weeks underwent TA and TV Doppler measurements of UtA prospectively, blindly and independently by Fetal Medicine Foundation-accredited operators. The more experienced operator performed all the scans to assess intra-observer reproducibility. Inter-observer reproducibility and generalizability was evaluated among different operators and different ultrasound equipment. Intra- and inter-rater reliability was assessed by Concordance Correlation Coefficient and Intraclass Correlation Coefficient; agreement was estimated with Limits of Agreement and reported graphically with Bland-Altman plots. Correlation between BMI and feasibility and accuracy of UtA measurements were studied with Spearman's correlation coefficient. Differences between TA and TV measurements were evaluated by Wilcoxon test.

Results: A total of 101 women were enrolled. The intra-observer reproducibility for TA and TV measurements ranged from 0.87 to 0.94, respectively. The inter-observer reproducibility varied from 0.57 (for TA measurements by the less experienced operator) to 0.95 (for TV measurements by the more experienced operator), and it was independent of the ultrasound equipment used. Spearman's correlation coefficient failed to demonstrate a correlation between BMI and time to get the first set of TA-TV measurements, or between BMI and TA-TV reproducibility. In four patients, the operators could not obtain the TA measurements due to high BMI. In our population the UtA pulsatility index (PI) values did not differ significantly between the TA or TV approach.

Conclusions: UtA PI measurements obtained by experienced operators show a moderate intra- and inter-observer reproducibility. The TV approach might be used when TA measurements fail in obese women, especially since specific reference ranges for TV measurements may not be necessary. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/pd.4970DOI Listing
December 2016

Mechanisms for the inhibition of amyloid aggregation by small ligands.

Biosci Rep 2016 Oct 29;36(5). Epub 2016 Sep 29.

Dipartimento di Scienze Biomediche Sperimentali e Cliniche, Università degli Studi di Firenze, viale Morgangi 50, 50134 Firenze, Italy.

The formation of amyloid aggregates is the hallmark of systemic and neurodegenerative disorders, also known as amyloidoses. Many proteins have been found to aggregate into amyloid-like fibrils and this process is recognized as a general tendency of polypeptides. Lysozyme, an antibacterial protein, is a well-studied model since it is associated in human with systemic amyloidosis and that is widely available from chicken eggs (HEWL, hen egg white lysozyme). In the present study we investigated the mechanism of interaction of aggregating HEWL with rosmarinic acid and resveratrol, that we verified to be effective and ineffective, respectively, in inhibiting aggregate formation. We used a multidisciplinary strategy to characterize such effects, combining biochemical and biophysical methods with molecular dynamics (MD) simulations on the HEWL peptide 49-64 to gain insights into the mechanisms and energy variations associated to amyloid formation and inhibition. MD revealed that neither resveratrol nor rosmarinic acid were able to compete with the initial formation of the β-sheet structure. We then tested the association of two β-sheets, representing the model of an amyloid core structure. MD showed that rosmarinic acid displayed an interaction energy and a contact map comparable to that of sheet pairings. On the contrary, resveratrol association energy was found to be much lower and its contact map largely different than that of sheet pairings. The overall characterization elucidated a possible mechanism explaining why, in this model, resveratrol is inactive in blocking fibril formation, whereas rosmarinic acid is instead a powerful inhibitor.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1042/BSR20160101DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5041158PMC
October 2016
-->