Publications by authors named "Matteo Manfredi"

84 Publications

Identification of Recurrent Anatomical Clusters Using Three-dimensional Virtual Models for Complex Renal Tumors with an Imperative Indication for Nephron-sparing Surgery: New Technological Tools for Driving Decision-making.

Eur Urol Open Sci 2022 Apr 4;38:60-66. Epub 2022 Mar 4.

Department of Urology, San Luigi Gonzaga Hospital, University of Turin, Orbassano, Turin, Italy.

Background: Some renal tumors have an imperative indication for nephron-sparing surgery (NSS), such as in cases of chronic kidney disease and bilateral complex tumors.

Objective: To demonstrate the degree to which three-dimensional virtual model (3DVM) assistance can be helpful in planning the surgical strategy for high-complexity renal masses with an imperative indication for NSS.

Design Setting And Participants: Three patients with high-complexity renal masses with unusual anatomy and an imperative indication for NSS were prospectively selected across 2020 and 2021 at our institution. All patients underwent contrast-enhanced computed tomography from which a 3DVM was obtained.

Surgical Procedure: Robot-assisted partial nephrectomy with 3DVM augmented reality guidance.

Measurements: Demographics and tumor-related features were recorded. Data for intraoperative, pathological, and functional assessments were collected for all three patients.

Results And Limitations: Two of the three patients harbored bilateral renal tumors. The third patient presented with a renal mass in the left kidney and contralateral renal hypoplasia (right-split renal function of 25%). All of the patients demonstrated similar anatomical and tumor features on 3DVMs, with potentially independent vascularization and drainage for the lower pole. In one patient the upper pole of the kidney was spared, exiting in a functionally excluded hydrocalyx, while in the other two cases the upper pole was removed together with the lesion. The spared portion of the kidney retained vascularization, as demonstrated by intraoperative ultrasound and indocyanine green injection. The small sample size and short follow-up are the main limitations of the study.

Conclusions: 3DVMs, especially for complex renal masses with an imperative indication for NSS, allow planning of the surgical strategy on the basis of the anatomical characteristics of the organ in which the tumor is growing.

Patient Summary: Three-dimensional models help in defining the best surgical strategy for kidney tumors, especially for complex tumors that require surgery to spare as much of the kidney as possible.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.euros.2022.02.006DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8898779PMC
April 2022

Robotic partial nephrectomy in 3D virtual reconstructions era: is the paradigm changed?

World J Urol 2022 Mar 22;40(3):659-670. Epub 2022 Feb 22.

Division of Urology, Department of Oncology, San Luigi Gonzaga Hospital, University of Turin, Regione Gonzole 10, 10043, Orbassano (Turin), Italy.

Context: The development of a tailored, patient-specific medical and surgical approach is becoming object of intense research. In kidney oncologic surgery, where a clear understanding of case-specific surgical anatomy is considered a key point to optimize the perioperative outcomes, such philosophy gained increasing importance. Recently, important advances in 3D virtual modeling technologies have fueled the interest for their application in the field of robotic minimally invasive surgery for kidney tumors.

Objective: To provide a synthesis of current applications of 3D virtual models for robot-assisted partial nephrectomy.

Evidence Acquisition: Medline, PubMed, the Cochrane Database, and Embase were screened for Literature regarding the use of 3D virtual models for robot-assisted partial nephrectomy (RAPN).

Evidence Synthesis: The use of 3D virtual models for RAPN has been tested in different settings, including surgical indication and planning, intraoperative guidance, and training. Currently, several studies are available on the application of this technology for surgical planning, demonstrating impact on clinical outcomes such as renal function recovery, whilst experiences concerning their intraoperative application for navigation are still experimental. One of the latest innovations in this field is represented by the development of dedicated softwares able to automatically overlap the 3D virtual models to the real anatomy, to perform augmented reality procedures.

Conclusions: The available Literature suggests a potentially crucial role of 3D virtual reconstructions during RAPN. Encouraging results concerning surgical planning and indication, intraoperative navigation, and surgical training are available. In the future, artificial intelligence may represent the key to further improve the 3D virtual modeling technology during RAPN.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00345-022-03964-xDOI Listing
March 2022

Partial vs. radical nephrectomy in non-metastatic pT3a kidney cancer patients: a population-based study.

Minerva Urol Nephrol 2022 Feb 11. Epub 2022 Feb 11.

Department of Urology, San Luigi Gonzaga Hospital, University of Turin, Orbassano, Turin, Italy.

Background: To test for differences in cancer specific mortality (CSM) rates between radical nephrectomy (RN) and partial nephrectomy (PN) in pT3a nmRCC patients.

Methods: Within the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results database (2005-2016), 13,177 pT3a patients treated with either PN or RN were identified. Before and after 1:2 ratio propensity score (PS)-match between PN and RN patients, cumulative incidence plot and competing risks regression (CRR) were used to test differences in CSM and other cause mortality (OCM) rates.

Results: Relative to PN (n=1,615, 22.5%), RN patients harbored higher tumor size (72 vs. 38 mm; >70 mm 51 vs.10%), of more aggressive histology, collecting duct (0.4 vs. 0.2%) and sarcomatoid (2.3 vs.0.8%), of higher grade (51.0 vs. 37.5%). After PS-matching and OCM adjustment, 5-year CSM was 3-fold higher after RN than PN (p<0.01). Similarly, after PS matching and CSM adjustment, also 5-year OCM rates were higher after RN (HR: 1.59, p=0.0003).

Conclusions: PN does not appear to compromise the oncological outcomes in patients with pT3a or high-grade renal masses when compared with RN. Therefore, these concerns should not deter a surgeon from attempting PN when otherwise technically feasible.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.23736/S2724-6051.22.04680-8DOI Listing
February 2022

iTIND for BPH: Technique and procedural outcomes: A narrative review of current literature.

Turk J Urol 2021 11;47(6):470-481

Division of Urology, Department of Oncology, University of Turin School of Medicine, San Luigi Hospital, Orbassano, Italy.

In the last few years, new technologies have been developed to treat benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) in order to offer valid surgical alternatives to transurethral resection of the prostate with lower complications and hospitalization while maintaining satisfactory functional results. Among these new approaches, transurethral implantation of first- and second-generation temporary implantable nitinol device (TIND and iTIND, respectively) (Medi-TateVR ; Medi-Tate Ltd., Or Akiva, Israel) has been proposed. The aim of this work is to describe the surgical technique and to perform a systematic review of the available literature on follow-up of functional outcomes. A systematic research of the available literature on this topic was performed via Medline, Embase, and Cochrane databases in April 2021. Current evidence regarding the implantation of iTIND to treat BPH-related lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTSs) is still limited. Seven studies have been found. Only one randomized controlled trial has been published reporting short-term follow-up of implantation of iTIND versus sham procedure. All the studies reported that both procedures are safe, effective, and well-tolerated. Moreover, such treatment seems to not affect patient's sexual and ejaculatory functions. In conclusions, current clinical evidence suggests that temporary implantation of iTIND is a valid option for the minimally invasive surgical treatment of BPH-related LUTS. Further studies are required in order to confirm the functional results, especially over a long-term follow-up.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.5152/tud.2021.21145DOI Listing
November 2021

Indocyanine Green Drives Computer Vision Based 3D Augmented Reality Robot Assisted Partial Nephrectomy: The Beginning of "Automatic" Overlapping Era.

Urology 2022 Jan 19. Epub 2022 Jan 19.

Department of Oncology, Division of Urology, University of Turin, San Luigi Gonzaga Hospital, Orbassano (Turin), Italy; EAU Section of Uro-Technology (ESUT).

Augmented reality robot-assisted partial nephrectomy (AR-RAPN) is limited by the need of a constant manual overlapping of the hyper-accuracy 3D (HA3D) virtual models to the real anatomy. To present our preliminary experience with automatic 3D virtual model overlapping during AR-RAPN. To reach a fully automated HA3D model overlapping, we pursued computer vision strategies, based on the identification of landmarks to link the virtual model. Due to the limited field of view of RAPN, we used the whole kidney as a marker. Moreover, to overcome the limit of similarity of colors between the kidney and its neighboring structures, we super-enhanced the organ, using the NIRF Firefly fluorescence imaging technology. A specifically developed software named "IGNITE" (Indocyanine GreeN automatIc augmenTed rEality) allowed the automatic anchorage of the HA3D model to the real organ, leveraging the enhanced view offered by NIRF technology. Ten automatic AR-RAPN were performed. For all the patients a HA3D model was produced and visualized as AR image inside the robotic console. During all the surgical procedures, the automatic ICG-guided AR technology successfully anchored the virtual model to the real organ without hand-assistance (mean anchorage time: 7 seconds), even when moving the camera throughout the operative field, while zooming and translating the organ. In 7 patients with totally endophytic or posterior lesions, the renal masses were correctly identified with automatic AR technology, performing a successful enucleoresection. No intraoperative or postoperative Clavien >2 complications or positive surgical margins were recorded. Our pilot study provides the first demonstration of the application of computer vision technology for AR procedures, with a software automatically performing a visual concordance during the overlap of 3D models and in vivo anatomy. Its actual limitations, related to the kidney deformations during surgery altering the automatic anchorage, will be overcome implementing the organ recognition with deep learning algorithms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.urology.2021.10.053DOI Listing
January 2022

Robot-assisted-radical-cystectomy with total intracorporeal Y neobladder: Analysis of postoperative complications and functional outcomes with urodynamics findings.

Eur J Surg Oncol 2022 Mar 16;48(3):694-702. Epub 2021 Dec 16.

Department of Oncology, Division of Urology, University of Turin, San Luigi Gonzaga Hospital, Orbassano (Turin), Italy.

Objectives: To describe our robotic Y intracorporeal neobladder (ICNB) technique and to report its post-operative complications and urodynamics (UD) findings.

Subjects: and Methods: In this prospective study we enrolled patients affected by MIBC (T1-T4N0-N1M0) from 01/2017 to 06/2021 at our Centers. All the patients underwent robotic radical cystectomy (RARC) with Y-ICNB reconfiguration. Early and late complications were collected and classified according to Clavien-Dindo. Continence and potency at 1, 3, 6 and 12 months were evaluated. At the 3rd month of follow-up patients underwent UD. Finally, in a retrospective match paired analysis the functional outcomes of Y RARC patients were compared with a cohort of open Y radical cystectomy.

Results: 45 patients were enrolled. Overall 30-day complications were observed in 25 (55,5%) patients and 30 to 90-days complications in 4 (8,9%). 9 patients (20%) had Clavien ≥3 complications. UDs revealed median neobladder capacity of 268 cc, with a median compliance of 13 ml/cm H20; the voiding phase showed a voiding volume and a post void residual (PVR) of 154 cc and 105 cc respectively. At 12 months of follow-up 4.4%, 15.5% and 4.4% of the patients experienced urge, stress and mix urinary incontinence respectively. The comparison between Y RARC and Y open RC revealed a higher neobladder capacity with open approach (p = 0.049) with subsequent better findings during the voiding phase in terms of maximum flow (p = 0.002), voiding volume (p = 0.001) and PVR (p = 0.01). Focusing on continence recovery, a slight trend in favor of RARC was shown without reaching the statistical significance.

Conclusions: Robotic Y-ICNB is feasible and safe as shown by the low rate of postoperative complications. Satisfying UD functional outcomes are achievable, both during filling and voiding phase.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ejso.2021.12.014DOI Listing
March 2022

Treatment of Ureteral Stent-Related Symptoms.

Urol Int 2021 Nov 2:1-16. Epub 2021 Nov 2.

Division of Urology, Department of Oncology, School of Medicine, San Luigi Hospital, University of Turin, Turin, Italy.

Background: The aim of the study was to assess the effectiveness of the main classes of drugs used at reducing morbidity related to ureteric stents.

Summary: After establishing a priori protocol, a systematic electronic literature search was conducted in July 2019. The randomized clinical trials (RCTs) selection proceeded in accordance with the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses (PRISMA) guidelines and was registered (PROSPERO ID 178130). The risk of bias and the quality assessment of the included RCTs were performed. Ureteral Stent Symptom Questionnaire (USSQ), International Prostate Symptom Score (IPSS), and quality of life (QoL) were pooled for meta-analysis. Mean difference and risk difference were calculated as appropriate for each outcome to determine the cumulative effect size. Fourteen RCTs were included in the analysis accounting for 2,842 patients. Alpha antagonist, antimuscarinic, and phosphodiesterase (PDE) inhibitors significatively reduced all indexes of the USSQ, the IPSS and QoL scores relative to placebo. Conversely, combination therapy (alpha antagonist plus antimuscarinic) showed in all indexes of the USSQ, IPSS, and QoL over alpha antagonist or antimuscarinic alone. On comparison with alpha blockers, PDE inhibitors were found to be equally effective for urinary symptoms, general health, and body pain parameters, but sexual health parameters improved significantly with PDE inhibitors. Finally, antimuscarinic resulted in higher decrease in all indexes of the USSQ, the IPSS, and QoL relative to alpha antagonist. Key message: Relative to placebo, alpha antagonist alone, antimuscarinics alone, and PDE inhibitors alone have beneficial effect in reducing stent-related symptoms. Furthermore, there are significant advantages of combination therapy compared with monotherapy. Finally, PDE inhibitors are comparable to alpha antagonist, and antimuscarinic seems to be more effective than alpha antagonist alone.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000518387DOI Listing
November 2021

Percutaneous Kidney Puncture with Three-dimensional Mixed-reality Hologram Guidance: From Preoperative Planning to Intraoperative Navigation.

Eur Urol 2021 Nov 16. Epub 2021 Nov 16.

Division of Urology, Department Of Oncology, School of Medicine, University of Turin, San Luigi Hospital, Orbassano, Turin, Italy.

Background: Despite technical and technological innovations, percutaneous puncture still represents the most challenging step when performing percutaneous nephrolithotomy. This maneuver is characterized by the steepest learning curve and a risk of injuring surrounding organs and kidney damage.

Objective: To evaluate the feasibility of three-dimensional mixed reality (3D MR) holograms in establishing the access point and guiding the needle during percutaneous kidney puncture.

Design, Setting, And Participants: This prospective study included ten patients who underwent 3D MR endoscopic combined intrarenal surgery (ECIRS) for kidney stones from July 2019 to January 2020. A retrospective series of patients who underwent a standard procedure were selected for matched pair analysis.

Surgical Procedure: For patients who underwent 3D MR ECIRS, holograms were overlapped on the real anatomy to guide the surgeon during percutaneous puncture. In the standard group, the procedures were only guided by ultrasound and fluoroscopy.

Measurements: Differences in preoperative and postoperative patient characteristics between the groups were tested using a χ test and a Kruskal-Wallis test for categorical and continuous variables, respectively. Results are reported as the median and interquartile range for continuous variables and as the frequency and percentage for categorical variables.

Results And Limitations: Ten patients underwent 3D MR ECIRS. In all cases, the inferior calyx was punctured correctly, as planned using the overlapping hologram. The median puncture and radiation exposure times were 27 min and 120 s, respectively. No intraoperative or major postoperative complications occurred. Matched pair analysis with the standard ECIRS group revealed a significantly shorter radiation exposure time for the 3D MR group (p < 0.001) even though the puncture time was longer in comparison to the standard group (p < 0.001). Finally, use of 3D MR led to a higher success rate for renal puncture at the first attempt (100% vs 50%; p = 0.032). The main limitations of the study are the small sample size and manual overlapping of the rigid hologram models.

Conclusions: Our experience demonstrates that 3D MR guidance for renal puncture is feasible and safe. The procedure proved to be effective, with the inferior calyx correctly punctured in all cases, and was associated with a low intraoperative radiation exposure time because of the MR guidance.

Patient Summary: Three-dimensional virtual models visualized as holograms and intraoperatively overlapped on the patient's real anatomy seem to be a valid new tool for guiding puncture of the kidney through the skin for minimally invasive treatment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.eururo.2021.10.023DOI Listing
November 2021

The Impact of SARS-CoV-2 Pandemic on Time to Primary, Secondary Resection and Adjuvant Intravesical Therapy in Patients with High-Risk Non-Muscle Invasive Bladder Cancer: A Retrospective Multi-Institutional Cohort Analysis.

Cancers (Basel) 2021 Oct 21;13(21). Epub 2021 Oct 21.

Department of Urology, University of Bologna, S-Orsola-Malpighi Hospital, 40138 Bologna, Italy.

Background: To investigate the impact of COVID-19 outbreak on the diagnosis and treatment of non-muscle invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC).

Methods: A retrospective analysis was performed using an Italian multi-institutional database of TURBT patients with high-risk urothelial NMIBC between January 2019 and February 2021, followed by Re-TURBT and/or adjuvant intravesical BCG.

Results: A total of 2591 patients from 27 institutions with primary TURBT were included. Of these, 1534 (59.2%) and 1056 (40.8%) underwent TURBT before and during the COVID-19 outbreak, respectively. Time between diagnosis and TURBT was significantly longer during the COVID-19 period (65 vs. 52 days, = 0.002). One thousand and sixty-six patients (41.1%) received Re-TURBT, 604 (56.7%) during the pre-COVID-19. The median time to secondary resection was significantly longer during the COVID-19 period (55 vs. 48 days, < 0.0001). A total of 977 patients underwent adjuvant intravesical therapy after primary or secondary resection, with a similar distribution across the two groups ( = 453, 86% vs. = 388, 86.2%). However, the proportion of the patients who underwent maintenance significantly differed (79.5% vs. 60.4%, < 0.0001).

Conclusions: The COVID-19 pandemic represented an unprecedented challenge to our health system. Our study did not show significant differences in TURBT quality. However, a delay in treatment schedule and disease management was observed. Investigation of the oncological impacts of those differences should be advocated.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/cancers13215276DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8582553PMC
October 2021

DeepREx-WS: A web server for characterising protein-solvent interaction starting from sequence.

Comput Struct Biotechnol J 2021 13;19:5791-5799. Epub 2021 Oct 13.

Biocomputing Group, Department of Pharmacy and Biotechnology, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy.

Protein-solvent interaction provides important features for protein surface engineering when the structure is absent or partially solved. Presently, we can integrate the notion of solvent exposed/buried residues with that of their flexibility and intrinsic disorder to highlight regions where mutations may increase or decrease protein stability in order to modify proteins for biotechnological reasons, while preserving their functional integrity. Here we describe a web server, which provides the unique possibility of integrating knowledge of solvent and non-solvent exposure with that of residue conservation, flexibility and disorder of a protein sequence, for a better understanding of which regions are relevant for protein integrity. The core of the webserver is DeepREx, a novel deep learning-based tool that classifies each residue in the sequence as buried or exposed. DeepREx is trained on a high-quality, non-redundant dataset derived from the Protein Data Bank comprising 2332 monomeric protein chains and benchmarked on a blind test set including 200 protein sequences unrelated with the training set. Results show that DeepREx performs at the state-of-the-art in the field. In turn, the Web Server, DeepREx-WS, supplements the predictions of DeepREx with features that allow a better characterisation of exposed and buried regions: i) residue conservation derived from multiple sequence alignment; ii) local sequence hydrophobicity; iii) residue flexibility computed with MEDUSA; iv) a predictor of secondary structure; v) the presence of disordered regions as derived from MobiDB-Lite3.0. The web server allows browsing, selecting and intersecting the different features. We demonstrate a possible application of the DeepREx-WS for assisting the identification of residues to be variated in protein surface engineering processes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.csbj.2021.10.016DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8566768PMC
October 2021

A Fully Automatic Artificial Intelligence System Able to Detect and Characterize Prostate Cancer Using Multiparametric MRI: Multicenter and Multi-Scanner Validation.

Front Oncol 2021 1;11:718155. Epub 2021 Oct 1.

Department of Radiology, Candiolo Cancer Institute, FPO-IRCCS, Candiolo, Italy.

In the last years, the widespread use of the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood examination to triage patients who will enter the diagnostic/therapeutic path for prostate cancer (PCa) has almost halved PCa-specific mortality. As a counterpart, millions of men with clinically insignificant cancer not destined to cause death are treated, with no beneficial impact on overall survival. Therefore, there is a compelling need to develop tools that can help in stratifying patients according to their risk, to support physicians in the selection of the most appropriate treatment option for each individual patient. The aim of this study was to develop and validate on multivendor data a fully automated computer-aided diagnosis (CAD) system to detect and characterize PCas according to their aggressiveness. We propose a CAD system based on artificial intelligence algorithms that a) registers all images coming from different MRI sequences, b) provides candidates suspicious to be tumor, and c) provides an aggressiveness score of each candidate based on the results of a support vector machine classifier fed with radiomics features. The dataset was composed of 131 patients (149 tumors) from two different institutions that were divided in a training set, a narrow validation set, and an external validation set. The algorithm reached an area under the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve in distinguishing between low and high aggressive tumors of 0.96 and 0.81 on the training and validation sets, respectively. Moreover, when the output of the classifier was divided into three classes of risk, i.e., indolent, indeterminate, and aggressive, our method did not classify any aggressive tumor as indolent, meaning that, according to our score, all aggressive tumors would undergo treatment or further investigations. Our CAD performance is superior to that of previous studies and overcomes some of their limitations, such as the need to perform manual segmentation of the tumor or the fact that analysis is limited to single-center datasets. The results of this study are promising and could pave the way to a prediction tool for personalized decision making in patients harboring PCa.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fonc.2021.718155DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8517452PMC
October 2021

New Ultra-minimally Invasive Surgical Treatment for Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia: A Systematic Review and Analysis of Comparative Outcomes.

Eur Urol Open Sci 2021 Nov 22;33:28-41. Epub 2021 Sep 22.

Department of Oncology, Division of Urology, University of Turin, Turin, Italy.

Context: Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) associated with lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) is diagnosed in up to 80% of men during their lifetime. Several novel ultra-minimally invasive surgical treatments (uMISTs) for BPH/benign prostatic obstruction (BPO) have become available over the past 5 yr.

Objective: To evaluate the perioperative and functional outcomes of recently introduced uMISTs for BPH/BPO, including Urolift, Rezūm, temporary implantable nitinol device, prostatic artery embolization (PAE), and intraprostatic injection.

Evidence Acquisition: A systematic literature search was conducted in December 2020 using Medline (via PubMed), Embase (via Ovid), Scopus, and Web of Science (registered on PROSPERO as CRD42021225014). The search strategy used PICO criteria and article selection was conducted in accordance with the PRISMA guidelines. The risk of bias and the quality of the articles included were assessed. A dedicated data extraction form was used to collect the data of interest. Pooled and cumulative analyses were performed to compare perioperative and functional outcomes between study groups. A random-effects model using the DerSimonian and Laird method was used to evaluate heterogeneity. Stata version 15.0 software was used for all statistical analyses.

Evidence Synthesis: The initial electronic search identified 3978 papers, of which 48 ultimately met the inclusion criteria and were included in the analysis. Pooled analysis revealed a uMIST benefit in terms of International Prostate Symptom Score (IPSS; -9.81 points, 95% confidence interval [CI] -11.37 to -8.25 at 1 mo; -13.13 points, 95% CI -14.98 to -11.64 at 12 mo), maximum flow rate (from +3.66 ml/s, 95% CI 2.8-4.5 to +4.14 ml/s, 95% CI 0.72-7.56 at 12 mo), and postvoid residual volume (-10.10 ml, 95% CI -27.90 to 7.71 at 12 mo). No negative impact was observed on scores for the International Index of Erectile Function-5, Male Sexual Health Questionnaire-Ejaculatory Dysfunction bother and function scales (overall postintervention change in pooled median score of 1.88, 95% CI 1.34-2.42 at the start of follow-up; and 1.04, 95% CI 0.28-1.8 after 1 yr), or the IPSS-Quality of Life questionnaire.

Conclusions: Novel uMISTs can yield fast and effective relief of LUTS without affecting patient quality of life. Only Rezūm, UroLift, and PAE had a minimal impact on patients' sexual function with respect to baseline, especially regarding preservation of ejaculation.

Patient Summary: We reviewed outcomes for recently introduced ultra-minimally invasive surgical treatments for patients with lower urinary tract symptoms caused by benign prostate enlargement or obstruction. The evidence suggests that these novel techniques are beneficial in terms of controlling symptoms while preserving sexual function.

Take Home Message: Novel ultra-minimally invasive treatments can yield fast and effective relief of lower urinary tract symptoms without affecting a patient's quality of life.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.euros.2021.08.009DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8473553PMC
November 2021

A risk-group classification model in patients with bladder cancer under neoadjuvant cisplatin-based combination chemotherapy.

Future Oncol 2021 Oct 19;17(30):3987-3994. Epub 2021 Jul 19.

Department of Urology, Humanitas Gavazzeni, Bergamo, Italy.

The objective of the current research was to explore the potential prognostic value of readily available clinical and pathologic variables in bladder cancer. The novel association found between cholesterol levels and prognosis may provide the rationale for exploring novel treatments. Patients included had histologically confirmed urothelial bladder cancer and were treated with at least 3 cycles of cisplatin-based neoadjuvant chemotherapy before radical cystectomy with lymphadenectomy. A total of 245 patients at low, intermediate and high risk, presenting with 0-1, 2 or 3-4 risk factors, including positive lymph nodes, Hb <12.8, NLR ≥2.7 and cholesterol levels ≥199, were included. Five-year cancer-specific survival rate was 0.67, 0.78 and 0.94 at high, intermediate and low risk, respectively. Total cholesterol levels at the time of cystectomy may represent a commonly assessable prognostic factor and may be incorporated in a clinically meaningful risk-group classification model.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2217/fon-2020-1298DOI Listing
October 2021

Neutrophil percentage-to-albumin ratio predicts mortality in bladder cancer patients treated with neoadjuvant chemotherapy followed by radical cystectomy.

Future Sci OA 2021 Aug 20;7(7):FSO709. Epub 2021 Apr 20.

Department of Emergency & Organ Transplantation-Urology, Andrology & Kidney Transplantation Unit, University of Bari, Bari, Italy.

Aim: To investigate the prognostic role of neutrophil percentage-to-albumin ratio (NPAR) in muscle-invasive bladder cancer (MIBC) patients treated with neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NAC) and radical cystectomy (RC).

Patients & Methods: 213 patients were included.

Inclusion Criteria: Nonmetastatic, MIBC (cT2-T4aN0M0), at least three cycles of NAC, undergone RC and with blood count within 30 days before NAC.

Results: Five-years overall survival (OS) with NPAR >18 was 34.06% (95% CI: 18.3-50.5) and 65.37% (95% CI: 52.4-75.6) with NPAR <18. Five years cancer-specific survival (CSS) with NPAR >18 was 42.9% (95% CI: 23.9-60.7) and 74.5% (95% CI: 62.6-83.1) with NPAR <18 (p < 0.001). In multivariable analysis, NPAR increased OS of 1.3 points and CSS of 4.37 points.

Conclusion: High NPAR prior to NAC seems to be a strong predictor of OS and CSS in MIBC patients treated with NAC and RC.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2144/fsoa-2021-0008DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8256323PMC
August 2021

Beyond the Learning Curve of Prostate MRI/TRUS Target Fusion Biopsy after More than 1000 Procedures.

Urology 2021 09 2;155:39-45. Epub 2021 Jul 2.

Department of Oncology, Division of Urology, University of Turin, San Luigi Gonzaga Hospital, Turin, 10043.

Objective: To evaluate the learning curve (LC) of two urology residents in the execution of fusion biopsy (FB) in terms of overall prostate cancer (PCa) and clinically significant (cs) PCa detection rate (DR) and according to different characteristics of the lesions on MRI MATERIAL AND METHODS: We analyzed data from our prospective maintained FB database between January 2015 and December 2019. FB was performed using the BioJet fusion system (D&K Technologies, Barum, Germany) with a transrectal or transperineal approach. An ANOVA test was used to evaluate the homogeneity of our cohort. Multivariable linear and logistic regression analysis were used to evaluate the relationship between operator experience and DR for PCa and csPCa. Then, the postprocedural complication rate trend was evaluated.

Results: 1005 patients were included. The overall DR of PCa was 61.2% (615/1005) [IC 0.58 - 0.64]; whilst DR for csPCA was 54.6% (549/1005) [IC 0.51 - 0.57]. Operator experience does not seem to influence the DR of overall PCa and csPCa; whilst for lesions <8 mm in diameter, PCa and csPCa DR increased significantly with operator experience (P = 0.048 and P = 0.038, respectively). Postprocedural complications remained stable during the whole study period (P = 0.75).

Conclusion: A standardized FB approach turned out to be feasible, safe, and effective since the beginning of the residents' LC. PCa and csPCa DR remained stable, at 60% and 55% respectively, after more than 1,000 biopsies. However, for lesions smaller than 8 mm, at least 100 FB of experience is needed to correctly sample the area.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.urology.2021.06.021DOI Listing
September 2021

Increased Body Mass Index Is a Risk Factor for Poor Clinical Outcomes after Radical Prostatectomy in Men with International Society of Urological Pathology Grade Group 1 Prostate Cancer Diagnosed with Systematic Biopsies.

Urol Int 2022 24;106(1):75-82. Epub 2021 Jun 24.

Department of Emergency and Organ Transplantation-Urology, Andrology and Kidney Transplantation Unit, University of Bari, Bari, Italy.

Introduction: The association between obesity and clinically significant prostate cancer (PCa) is still a matter of debate. In this study, we evaluated the effect of body mass index (BMI) on the prediction of pathological unfavorable disease (UD), positive surgical margins (PSMs), and biochemical recurrence (BCR) in patients with clinically localized (≤cT2c) International Society of Urological Pathology (ISUP) grade group 1 PCa at biopsy.

Methods: 427 patients with ISUP grade group 1 PCa who have undergone radical prostatectomy and BMI evaluation were included. The outcome of interest was the presence of UD (defined as ISUP grade group ≥3 and pT ≥3a), PSM, and BCR.

Results: Statistically significant differences resulted in comparing BMI with prostate-specific antigen (PSA) and serum testosterone levels (both p < 0.0001). Patients with UD and PSM had higher BMI values (p < 0.0001 and p = 0.006, respectively). BCR-free survival was significantly decreased in patients with higher BMI values (p < 0.0001). BMI was an independent risk factor for BCR and PSM. Receiver-operating characteristic analysis testing PSA accuracy in different BMI groups, showed that PSA had a reduced predictive value (area under the curve [AUC] = 0.535; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.422-0.646), in obese men compared to overweight (AUC = 0.664; 95% CI = 0.598-0.725) and normal weight patients (AUC = 0.721; 95% CI = 0.660-0.777).

Conclusion: Our findings show that increased BMI is a significant predictor of UD and PSM at RP in patients with preoperative low-to intermediate-risk diseases, suggesting that BMI evaluation may be useful in a clinical setting to identify patients with favorable preoperative disease characteristics harboring high-risk PCa.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000516680DOI Listing
March 2022

Three vs. Four Cycles of Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy for Localized Muscle Invasive Bladder Cancer Undergoing Radical Cystectomy: A Retrospective Multi-Institutional Analysis.

Front Oncol 2021 11;11:651745. Epub 2021 May 11.

Division of Urology of European Institute of Oncology (IEO), IRCCS, Milan, Italy.

Background: Three or four cycles of cisplatin-based chemotherapy is the standard neoadjuvant treatment prior to cystectomy in patients with muscle-invasive bladder cancer. Although NCCN guidelines recommend 4 cycles of cisplatin-gemcitabine, three cycles are also commonly administered in clinical practice. In this multicenter retrospective study, we assessed a large and homogenous cohort of patients with urothelial bladder cancer (UBC) treated with three or four cycles of neoadjuvant cisplatin-gemcitabine followed by radical cystectomy, in order to explore whether three vs. four cycles were associated with different outcomes.

Methods: Patients with histologically confirmed muscle-invasive UBC included in this retrospective study had to be treated with either 3 (cohort A) or 4 (cohort B) cycles of cisplatin-gemcitabine as neoadjuvant therapy before undergoing radical cystectomy with lymphadenectomy. Outcomes including pathologic downstaging to non-muscle invasive disease, pathologic complete response (defined as absence of disease -ypT0), overall- and cancer-specific- survival as well as time to recurrence were compared between cohorts A vs. B.

Results: A total of 219 patients treated at 14 different high-volume Institutions were included in this retrospective study. Patients who received 3 (cohort A) vs. 4 (cohort B) cycles of neoadjuvant cisplatin-gemcitabine were 160 (73,1%) vs. 59 (26,9%).At univariate analysis, the number of neoadjuvant cycles was not associated with either pathologic complete response, pathologic downstaging, time to recurrence, cancer specific, and overall survival. Of note, patients in cohort B vs. A showed a worse non-cancer specific overall survival at univariate analysis (HR= 2.53; 95 CI= 1.05 - 6.10; p=0.046), although this finding was not confirmed at multivariate analysis.

Conclusions: Our findings suggest that 3 cycles of cisplatin-gemcitabine may be equally effective, with less long-term toxicity, compared to 4 cycles in the neoadjuvant setting.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fonc.2021.651745DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8144638PMC
May 2021

The real-time intraoperative guidance of the new HIFU Focal-One platform allows to minimize the perioperative adverse events in salvage setting.

J Ultrasound 2021 May 24. Epub 2021 May 24.

Department of Oncology, Division of Urology, San Luigi Gonzaga Hospital, University of Turin, Orbassano, Turin, Italy.

Purpose: To assess the use of the new Focal-One HIFU platform in salvage setting to evaluate the occurrence of postoperative complications.

Methods: Patients who underwent salvage HIFU (sHIFU) with Focal-One platform were enrolled prospectively (Candiolo cancer institute-FPO IRCCS; registry number: 258/2018). Perioperative and postoperative outcomes (in terms of oncological and functional ones) were recorded during the first year of follow-up. In particular postoperative complications were classified according to Clavien-Dindo system.

Results: 20 patients were enrolled. No grade 3 complications were recorded. Referring to grade 2 complications, eight patients reported urgency after 3 months of follow-up, and in 4 cases, a low urinary tract infection occurred. Evaluating the impact of sHIFU on patients' sexual potency, micturition and quality of life, no significant deterioration was recorded during the follow-up as proven using the ANOVA analysis for repeated measurements. Only two patient had a biochemical failure after 12 months of follow-up.

Conclusions: The real-time intraoperative guidance with Focal-One platform, allows a continuous monitoring and tailoring of the treatment, with a minimization of the adverse events even in a salvage setting.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s40477-021-00594-8DOI Listing
May 2021

Diagnostic Accuracy of Single-plane Biparametric and Multiparametric Magnetic Resonance Imaging in Prostate Cancer: A Randomized Noninferiority Trial in Biopsy-naïve Men.

Eur Urol Oncol 2021 12 21;4(6):855-862. Epub 2021 Apr 21.

Department of Urology, University of Turin, San Luigi Gonzaga Hospital, Orbassano, Turin, Italy.

Background: Urological guidelines recommend multiparametric magnetic resonance imaging (mpMRI) in men with a suspicion of prostate cancer (PCa). The resulting increase in MRI demand might place health care systems under substantial stress.

Objective: To determine whether single-plane biparametric MRI (fast MRI) workup could represent an alternative to mpMRI in the detection of clinically significant (cs) PCa.

Design, Setting, And Participants: Between April 2018 and February 2020, 311 biopsy-naïve men aged ≤75 yr with PSA ≤15 ng/ml and negative digital rectal examination were randomly assigned to 1.5-T fast MRI (n = 213) or mpMRI (n = 98).

Intervention: All MRI examinations were classified according to Prostate Imaging-Reporting and Data System (PI-RADS) version 2. Men scored PI-RADS 1-2 underwent 12-core standard biopsy (SBx) and those with PI-RADS 4-5 on fast MRI or PI-RADS 3-5 on mpMRI underwent targeted biopsy in combination with SBx. Equivocal cases on fast MRI (PI-RADS 3) underwent mpMRI and then biopsy according to the findings.

Outcome Measurements And Statistical Analysis: The primary outcome was to compare the detection rate of csPCa in both study arms, setting a 10% difference for noninferiority. The secondary outcome was to assess the role of prostate-specific antigen density (PSAD) in ruling out men who could avoid biopsy among those with equivocal findings on fast MRI.

Results And Limitations: The overall MRI detection rate for csPCa was 23.5% (50/213; 95% confidence interval [CI] 18.0-29.8%) with fast MRI and 32.7% (32/98; 95% CI 23.6-42.9%) with mpMRI (difference 9.2%; p = 0.09). The reproducibility of the study could have been affected by its single-center nature.

Conclusions: Fast MRI followed by mpMRI in equivocal cases is not inferior to mpMRI in the detection of csPCa among biopsy-naïve men aged ≤75 yr with PSA ≤15 ng/ml and negative digital rectal examination. These findings could pave the way to broader use of MRI for PCa diagnosis.

Patient Summary: A faster MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) protocol with no contrast agent and fewer scan sequences for examination of the prostate is not inferior to the typical MRI approach in the detection of clinically significant prostate cancer. If our findings are confirmed in other studies, fast MRI could represent a time-saving and less invasive examination for men with suspicion of prostate cancer. This trial is registered at ClinicalTrials.gov as NCT03693703.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.euo.2021.03.007DOI Listing
December 2021

Comparison between minimally-invasive partial and radical nephrectomy for the treatment of clinical T2 renal masses: results of a 10-year study in a tertiary care center.

Minerva Urol Nephrol 2021 Aug 22;73(4):509-517. Epub 2021 Apr 22.

Division of Urology, Department of Oncology, School of Medicine, University of Turin, San Luigi Gonzaga Hospital, Orbassano, Turin, Italy.

Background: Even if partial nephrectomy (PN) is nowadays considered the standard for managing cT1 renal masses, its role in the management of cT2 kidney tumors is controversial. We aimed to compare oncologic and functional outcomes of minimally invasive radical nephrectomy (RN) and PN in cT2 renal masses.

Methods: Patients with cT2 renal masses underwent minimally-invasive PN or RN performed by a highly experienced single surgeon from 2009 to 2019 were considered. Demographic, perioperative and functional variables were compared. Cumulative incidence plot and competing risks regression (CRR) models were used to test differences in 5-year cancer-specific mortality (CSM) and 5-year other-cause mortality (OCM) rates. Kaplan-Meier and Cox regression model was used to test differences in 5-year progression free survival (PFS) rates.

Results: Overall, 52 PN vs. 64 RN patients were identified. Relative to RN, PN patients recorded higher rates of complications (25% vs. 7.8%, P=0.02) but lower upstaging rate (≥pT3a 64.1% vs. 19.2%, P<0.0001). Functional outcomes were in favor of PN (all P<0.001). No differences were recorded between 5-year CSM and OCM according to nephrectomy type. At CRR models, older age and upstaging were independent predictors of 5-year OCM and CSM, respectively (all P<0.01). Finally, only upstaging, high grade tumors and presence of positive surgical margins were identified as independent predictors of 5-year PFS (all P<0.01).

Conclusions: In experienced hands the treatment of cT2 renal neoplasms with minimally-invasive PN is feasible, providing perioperative and oncological safety profiles comparable to RN, with advantages in terms of functional outcomes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.23736/S2724-6051.21.04390-1DOI Listing
August 2021

3D imaging technologies in minimally invasive kidney and prostate cancer surgery: which is the urologists' perception?

Minerva Urol Nephrol 2022 Apr 26;74(2):178-185. Epub 2021 Mar 26.

School of Medicine, Division of Urology, Department of Oncology, San Luigi Hospital, University of Turin, Orbassano, Turin, Italy.

Background: Many specific 3D imaging technologies are currently available for the practising urologists. The aim of the study was to assess their perception about different 3D imaging tools in the field of prostate and kidney cancer surgery.

Methods: All the attendees of the 8th Techno-Urology-Meeting were asked to fill a questionnaire regarding the role of 3D virtual reconstruction PDFs, 3D printing models, augmented-reality (AR) and mixed reality technology in the setting of surgical planning, patient counselling, intraoperative guidance and training for kidney and prostate cancer surgery; Moreover the different materials used for 3D printing were compared to assess the most suitable in reproducing the organ and tumor features, as well as their estimated cost and production time.

Results: The population consisted of 180 attendees. Overall, AR was the preferred option for intraoperative guidance and training, in both prostate (55% and 38.3%) and kidney cancer surgery (58.3% and 40%). HoloLens (Microsoft Corp., Redmond, WA, USA) was perceived as the best imaging technology for the surgical planning (50% for prostate and 60% for kidney), whereas printed models for patients counselling (66.7% for prostate and 61.7% for kidney). Fused deposition models were deemed as the best printing technology in representing kidney anatomy and renal tumor location (40%), while silicon (46.7%) and Polyjet (36.7%) models for prostate anatomy and cancer location. Finally, attendees demonstrated poor knowledge of 3D printing costs and production times.

Conclusions: Our study shows the perceptions of a heterogeneous surrogate of practicing urologists about the role and potential applications of 3D imaging technologies in daily surgical practice.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.23736/S2724-6051.21.04131-XDOI Listing
April 2022

The emerging landscape of tumor marker panels for the identification of aggressive prostate cancer: the perspective through bibliometric analysis of an Italian translational working group in uro-oncology.

Minerva Urol Nephrol 2021 08 26;73(4):442-451. Epub 2021 Mar 26.

Department of Translational Medical Sciences, Federico II University, Naples, Italy -

Molecular heterogeneity and availability of different therapeutic strategies are relevant clinical features of prostate cancer. On this basis, there is an urgent need to identify prognostic and predictive biomarkers for an individualized therapeutic approach. In this context, researchers focused their attention on biomarkers able to discriminate potential life-threatening from organ-confined disease. Such biomarker could provide aid in clinical decision making, helping to choose the treatment which ensures the best results in terms of patient survival and quality of life. To address this need, many new laboratory tests have been proposed, with a clear tendency to use panels of combined biomarkers. In this review we evaluate current data on the application in clinical practice of the most promising laboratory tests: Phi, 4K score and Stockholm 3 as circulating biomarkers, Mi-prostate score, Exo DX Prostate and Select MD-X as urinary biomarkers, Confirm MDx, Oncotype Dx, Prolaris and Decipher as tissue biomarkers. In particular, the ability of these tests in the identification of clinically significant PCa and their potential use for precision medicine have been explored in this review.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.23736/S2724-6051.21.04098-4DOI Listing
August 2021

Multiparametric magnetic resonance imaging-targeted prostate biopsy: present and future of the prostate cancer diagnostic pathway.

Minerva Urol Nephrol 2021 02;73(1):128-129

Department of Radiology, IRCCS Candiolo Cancer Institute - FPO, Candiolo, Turin, Italy.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.23736/S2724-6051.21.04341-1DOI Listing
February 2021

Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning in Prostate Cancer Patient Management-Current Trends and Future Perspectives.

Diagnostics (Basel) 2021 02 20;11(2). Epub 2021 Feb 20.

Division of Urology, European Institute of Oncology (IEO)-IRCCS, 20141 Milan, Italy.

Artificial intelligence (AI) is the field of computer science that aims to build smart devices performing tasks that currently require human intelligence. Through machine learning (ML), the deep learning (DL) model is teaching computers to learn by example, something that human beings are doing naturally. AI is revolutionizing healthcare. Digital pathology is becoming highly assisted by AI to help researchers in analyzing larger data sets and providing faster and more accurate diagnoses of prostate cancer lesions. When applied to diagnostic imaging, AI has shown excellent accuracy in the detection of prostate lesions as well as in the prediction of patient outcomes in terms of survival and treatment response. The enormous quantity of data coming from the prostate tumor genome requires fast, reliable and accurate computing power provided by machine learning algorithms. Radiotherapy is an essential part of the treatment of prostate cancer and it is often difficult to predict its toxicity for the patients. Artificial intelligence could have a future potential role in predicting how a patient will react to the therapy side effects. These technologies could provide doctors with better insights on how to plan radiotherapy treatment. The extension of the capabilities of surgical robots for more autonomous tasks will allow them to use information from the surgical field, recognize issues and implement the proper actions without the need for human intervention.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/diagnostics11020354DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7924061PMC
February 2021

Solvent Accessibility of Residues Undergoing Pathogenic Variations in Humans: From Protein Structures to Protein Sequences.

Front Mol Biosci 2020 7;7:626363. Epub 2021 Jan 7.

Biocomputing Group, Department of Pharmacy and Biotechnologies, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy.

Solvent accessibility (SASA) is a key feature of proteins for determining their folding and stability. SASA is computed from protein structures with different algorithms, and from protein sequences with machine-learning based approaches trained on solved structures. Here we ask the question as to which extent solvent exposure of residues can be associated to the pathogenicity of the variation. By this, SASA of the wild-type residue acquires a role in the context of functional annotation of protein single-residue variations (SRVs). By mapping variations on a curated database of human protein structures, we found that residues targeted by disease related SRVs are less accessible to solvent than residues involved in polymorphisms. The disease association is not evenly distributed among the different residue types: SRVs targeting glycine, tryptophan, tyrosine, and cysteine are more frequently disease associated than others. For all residues, the proportion of disease related SRVs largely increases when the wild-type residue is buried and decreases when it is exposed. The extent of the increase depends on the residue type. With the aid of an in house developed predictor, based on a deep learning procedure and performing at the state-of-the-art, we are able to confirm the above tendency by analyzing a large data set of residues subjected to variations and occurring in some 12,494 human protein sequences still lacking three-dimensional structure (derived from HUMSAVAR). Our data support the notion that surface accessible area is a distinguished property of residues that undergo variation and that pathogenicity is more frequently associated to the buried property than to the exposed one.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fmolb.2020.626363DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7817970PMC
January 2021

Association of statin use and oncological outcomes in patients with first diagnosis of T1 high grade non-muscle invasive urothelial bladder cancer: results from a multicenter study.

Minerva Urol Nephrol 2021 12 13;73(6):796-802. Epub 2021 Jan 13.

Section of Urology, Unit of Andrology and Kidney Transplantation, Department of Emergency and Organ Transplantation, University of Bari, Bari, Italy.

Background: We aimed to test the hypothesis that the immune-modulatory effect of statins may improve survival outcomes in patients with non-muscle invasive bladder cancer (NMIBC). We focused on a cohort of patients diagnosed with high risk NMIBC, that were treated with intravesical BCG immunotherapy.

Methods: We included patients at first diagnosis of T1 high grade NMIBC after transurethral resection of bladder (TURB). All procedures were performed at 18 different tertiary institutions between January 2002 and December 2012. Univariable and multivariable models were used to test differences in terms of residual tumor, disease recurrence, disease progression and overall mortality (OM) rates.

Results: Overall, 1510 patients with T1 high grade NMIBC at TURB were included in our analyses. Of these, 402 (26.6%) were statin users. At multivariable analysis, statin use was associated with a higher rate of high-grade BC at re-TURB (OR: 1.37, 95%CI: 1.04-1.78; P=0.022), while at follow-up it was not independently associated with OM (HR: 0.71, 95%CI: 0.50-1.03; P=0.068) and disease progression rates (HR: 0.97, 95%CI: 0.79-1.19; P=0.753). Conversely, statin use has been shown to be independently associated with a lower risk of recurrence (HR:0.80, 95%CI: 0.67-0.95; P=0.009). The median recurrence-free survival was 47 (95%CI 40-49) months for those classified as non-statin users vs. 53 (95%CI 48-68) months in those classified as statin users.

Conclusions: Statin daily intake do not compromise oncological outcomes in high risk NMIBC patients treated with BCG. Moreover, statin may have a beneficial effect on recurrence rates in this cohort of patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.23736/S2724-6051.20.04076-XDOI Listing
December 2021

Anastomosis quality score during robot-assisted radical prostatectomy: a new simple tool to maximize postoperative management.

World J Urol 2021 Aug 3;39(8):2921-2928. Epub 2021 Jan 3.

Division of Urology, Department of Oncology, School of Medicine, University of Turin, San Luigi Hospital, Regione Gonzole 10, 10043, Orbassano, Turin, Italy.

Purpose: The urethro-vesical anastomosis represents one of the most challenging steps of robotic prostatectomy (RARP). To maximize postoperative management, we specifically designed our anastomosis quality score (AQS), based on the intraoperative characteristics of the urethra and bladder neck.

Methods: This is a prospective study, conducted from April 2019 to March 2020. All the patients were classified into three different AQS categories (low, intermediate, high) based on the quality of the anastomosis. The postoperative management was modulated accordingly.

Results: We enrolled 333 patients. According to AQS, no differences were recorded in intraoperative complications (p = 0.9). Median hospital stay and catheterization time were longer in AQS 1 group (p < 0.001). Additionally, the occurrence of postoperative complication was higher in AQS 1 category (p = 0.002) but, when focusing on the complications related to the quality of the anastomosis, no differences were found neither for acute urinary retention (p = 0.12) nor urine leakage (p = 0.11). Finally, concerning the continence recovery, no significant differences were found among the three groups for each time point. The highest potency recovery rate at one month of follow-up was recorded in AQS 3 category (p = 0. 03).

Conclusion: The AQS proposed revealed to be a valid too to intraoperatively categorize patients who underwent RARP on the basis of the urethral and bladder neck features. The modulated postoperative management for each specific score category allowed to limit the occurrence of complications and to maximize the functional outcomes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00345-020-03549-6DOI Listing
August 2021

Implementing telemedicine for the management of benign urologic conditions: a single centre experience in Italy.

World J Urol 2021 Aug 1;39(8):3109-3115. Epub 2021 Jan 1.

Division of Urology, Department of Oncology, School of Medicine, San Luigi Hospital, University of Turin, Regione Gonzole 10, 10043, Orbassano, Turin, Italy.

Purpose: To assess the use of telemedicine with phone-call visits as a practical tool to follow-up with patients affected by urological benign diseases, whose clinic visits had been cancelled during the acute phase of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Methods: Patients were contacted via phone-call and a specific questionnaire was administered to evaluate the health status of these patients and to identify those who needed an "in-person" ambulatory visit due to the worsening of their condition. Secondarily, the patients' perception of a potential shift towards a "telemedicine" approach to the management of their condition and to indirectly evaluate their desire to return to "in-person" clinic visits.

Results: 607 were contacted by phone-call. 87.5% (531/607) of the cases showed stability of the symptoms so no clinic in-person or emergency visits were needed. 81.5% (495/607) of patients were more concerned about the risk of contagion than their urological condition. The median score for phone visit comprehensibility and ease of communication of exams was 5/5; whilst patients' perception of phone visits' usefulness was scored 4/5. 53% (322/607) of the interviewees didn't own the basic supports required to be able to perform a real telemedicine consult according to the required standards.

Conclusion: Telemedicine approach limits the number of unnecessary accesses to medical facilities and represents an important tool for the limitation of the risk of transmission of infectious diseases, such as COVID-19. However, infrastructures, health workers and patients should reach out to a computerization process to allow a wider diffusion of more advanced forms of telemedicine, such as televisit.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00345-020-03536-xDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7775638PMC
August 2021

The importance of anatomical reconstruction for continence recovery after robot assisted radical prostatectomy: a systematic review and pooled analysis from referral centers.

Minerva Urol Nephrol 2021 04 17;73(2):165-177. Epub 2020 Nov 17.

Division of Urology, Department of Oncology, School of Medicine, San Luigi Gonzaga Hospital, University of Turin, Orbassano, Turin, Italy.

Introduction: Urinary incontinence is one of the most scared sequelae of robot assisted radical prostatectomy (RARP). Therefore, different surgical modifications, aimed to restore the original anatomy, were proposed to overcome this issue. The purpose of this study is to assess which is the best reconstruction technique (posterior only: PR; anterior only: AR; total: TR) compared to the standard approach for continence recovery after RARP in a tertiary care center.

Evidence Acquisition: After establishing an a priori protocol, a systematic electronic literature search was conducted in May 2019. The article selection proceeded in accordance with the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses (PRISMA) guidelines and was registered (PROSPERO registry number 131667). The risk of bias and the quality assessment of the included studies were performed. Simple pooled analysis was performed for continence rates according to the definition of continence (0 pad vs. 0-1 pad) and the different types of reconstruction at 1, 4, 12, 24, 52 weeks after RARP. Complication rate, operative and console time and estimated blood loss were pooled. Two-side test of proportion and T-test were used to compare rates and mean, respectively.

Evidence Synthesis: Six studies meeting the inclusion criteria were found and included in the analysis. All the included studies were of "poor" or "good" quality. A high or moderate risk of bias was recorded. TR showed higher continence recovery rates, compared to their anterior reconstruction counterpart at 1, 4, 12, 24, 52 weeks (P<0.001 at all time-points). At 12 weeks TR showed the highest continence rates (P<0.001), followed by AR and PR. No statistically significant differences were recorded regarding anastomosis-related complication rates (anastomosis stricture P=0.08; urine leakage P=0.1).

Conclusions: In patients undergoing RARP, TR facilitates a faster and higher continence recovery compared to standard approach or PR or AR only.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.23736/S2724-6051.20.04146-6DOI Listing
April 2021
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