Publications by authors named "Tariq Aziz"

55 Publications

Acute Flare of Adult-Onset Autoimmune Enteropathy Associated With Cyclophosphamide.

ACG Case Rep J 2021 Feb 22;8(2):e00541. Epub 2021 Feb 22.

Division of Gastroenterology, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

This is a case of adult-onset autoimmune enteropathy (AIE) in a 46-year-old man with multiple autoimmune conditions who presented with worsening disease process after receiving cyclophosphamide. We describe the investigations and management of this patient over a 6-year timeline. The diagnosis and management of AIE is challenging given the heterogeneity in clinicopathologic findings and a small number of adult case reports. We describe the current diagnostic criteria, review the literature on treatment options and outcomes, and discuss the evidence for cyclophosphamide in the treatment of AIE. Adult-onset AIE should be considered in the differential diagnosis of refractory diarrhea and weight loss.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.14309/crj.0000000000000541DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7901791PMC
February 2021

Kinetic and Thermal Study of Ethylene and Propylene Homo Polymerization Catalyzed by -Zirconocene Activated with Alkylaluminum/Borate: Effects of Alkylaluminum on Polymerization Kinetics and Polymer Structure.

Polymers (Basel) 2021 Jan 15;13(2). Epub 2021 Jan 15.

Research School of Polymeric Materials, School of Material Science & Engineering, Jiangsu University, Zhenjiang 202113, China.

The kinetics of ethylene and propylene polymerization catalyzed by homogeneous metallocene were investigated using 2-thiophenecarbonyl chloride followed by quenched-flow methods. The studied metallocene catalysts are: -MeSi(2-Me-4-Ph-Ind)ZrCl (Mt-I), -Et(Ind)ZrCl (Mt-II) activated with ([MeNPh][B(CF)] (Borate-I), [PhC][B(CF)] (Borate-II), and were co-catalyzed with different molar ratios of alkylaluminum such as triethylaluminium (TEA) and triisobutylaluminium (TIBA). The change in molecular weight, molecular weight distribution, microstructure and thermal properties of the synthesized polymer are discussed in detail. Interestingly, both Mt-I and Mt-II showed high activity in polyethylene with productivities between 3.17 × 10 g/mol·h to 5.06 × 10 g/mol·h, activities were very close to each other with 100% TIBA, but Mt-II/borate-II became more active when TEA was more than 50% in cocatalyst. Similarly, Polypropylene showed the highest activity of 11.07 10 g /mol·h with Mt-I/Borate-I/TIBA. The effects of alkylaluminum on PE molecular weight were much more complicated; MWD curve changed from mono-modal in Mt-I/borate-I/TIBA to bimodal type when TIBA was replaced by different amounts of TEA. In PE, the active center fractions [C*]/[Zr] of Mt-I/borate were higher than that of Mt-II/borate and average chain propagation rate constant () value slightly decreased with the increase of TEA/TIBA ratio, but the Mt-II/borate systems showed higher 1007 (L/mol·s). In PP, the Mt-I/borate presented much higher [C*]/[Zr] and value than the Mt-II. This work also extend to investigate the mechanistic features of zirconocenes catalyzed olefin polymerizations that addressed the largely unknown issues in zirconocenes in the distribution of the catalyst, between species involved in polymer chain growth and dormant state. In both metallocene systems, chain transfer with alkylaluminum is the dominant way of chain termination. To understand the mechanism of cocatalyst effects on PE M and (MWD), the unsaturated chain ends formed via -H transfer have been investigated by H NMR analysis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/polym13020268DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7830494PMC
January 2021

High-performance flexible resistive random access memory devices based on graphene oxidized with a perpendicular oxidation gradient.

Nanoscale 2021 Feb;13(4):2448-2455

Shenyang National Laboratory for Materials Science, Institute of Metal Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 72 Wenhua Road, Shenyang, 110016, P. R. China. and School of Material Science and Engineering, University of Science and Technology of China, 72 Wenhua Road, Shenyang, 110016, P. R. China.

The conventional strategy of fabricating resistive random access memory (RRAM) based on graphene oxide is limited to a resistive layer with homogeneous oxidation, and the switching behavior relies on its redox reaction with an active metal electrode, so the obtained RRAMs are typically plagued by inferior performance and reliability. Here, we report a strategy to develop high-performance flexible RRAMs by using graphene oxidized with a perpendicular oxidation gradient as the resistive layer. In contrast to a homogeneous oxide, this graphene together with its distinctive inter-layer oxygen diffusion path enables excellent oxygen ion/vacancy diffusion. Without an interfacial redox reaction, oxygen ions can diffuse to form conductive filaments with two inert metal electrodes by applying a bias voltage. Compared with state-of-the-art graphene oxide RRAMs, these graphene RRAMs have shown superior performance including a high on-off current ratio of ∼105, long-term retention of ∼106 s, reproducibility over 104 cycles and long-term flexibility at a bending strain of 0.6%, indicating that the material has great potential in wearable smart data-storage devices.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/d0nr07888cDOI Listing
February 2021

Exopolysaccharides from Lactobacillus plantarum YW11 improve immune response and ameliorate inflammatory bowel disease symptoms.

Acta Biochim Pol 2020 Dec;67(4):485-493

Beijing Advanced Innovation Center for Food Nutrition and Human Health, Beijing Technology and Business University, Beijing.

Exopolysaccharides (EPSs) possess many bioactivities such as immune regulation, antioxidant, anti-tumor and modulation of intestinal microbial balance but their direct effect on inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) response has not been studied. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the anti-inflammatory effect of EPS produced by L. plantarum YW11 administered at different dosages in IBD mouse model induced with 5% dextran sulphate sodium (DSS). The DSS-induced colitis, accompanied by body weight loss, reduction of colon coefficient and histological colon injury was considerably ameliorated in mice fed the EPS (10 mg/kg). The middle dose of the EPS (25 mg/kg) could effectively recover the intestinal microbial diversity and increase the abundance of Roseburia, Ruminococcus and Blautia with increased content of butyric acid. Moreover, EPS also reduced the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines (TNF-α, IL-1β, IL-6, IFN-γ, IL-12 and IL-18) and enhanced the anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-10. This study showed that EPS might help in modulation of gut microbiota and improve the immunity of the host to reduce the risk of IBD symptoms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.18388/abp.2020_5371DOI Listing
December 2020

A Statement of Solidarity on COVID-19 Pandemic 2020 by the South Asian Family Physicians.

J Family Med Prim Care 2020 Apr 30;9(4):1795-1797. Epub 2020 Apr 30.

Member, Federation of Family Physicians Association of India (FFPAI), SMO ESIS General Hospital, Vadodara, Gujarat, India.

The World Organization of Family Doctors (WONCA) is a not-for-profit organization and was founded in 1972 by member organizations in 18 countries. WONCA now has 118 Member Organizations in 131 countries and territories with a membership of about 500,000 family doctors and more than 90 percent of the world's population. WONCA has seven regions, each of which has its own regional Council and run their own regional activities including conferences. WONCA South Asia Region is constituted by the national academies and colleges and academic member organizations of this region namely India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bhutan, and the Maldives. In the background of the ongoing COVID 19 pandemic, the office bearers, academic leaders, practitioners, and researchers of primary care from the South Asia Region have issued a solidarity statement articulating the role of primary care physicians.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4103/jfmpc.jfmpc_619_20DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7346906PMC
April 2020

Screening of folate-producing lactic acid bacteria and modulatory effects of folate-biofortified yogurt on gut dysbacteriosis of folate-deficient rats.

Food Funct 2020 Jul;11(7):6308-6318

Beijing Advanced Innovation Center for Food Nutrition and Human Health, Beijing Engineering and Technology Research Center of Food Additives, Beijing Technology and Business University, Beijing 100048, China.

Folate deficiency is accompanied by gut dysbacteriosis. To understand dietary intervention in folate deficiency, a folate-deficient rat model was used to evaluate the modulatory effects of folate-producing lactic acid bacteria (LAB) and biofortified yogurt on gut dysbacteriosis. The high folate-producing strain was screened from 12 LABs, and its variant, namely Lactobacillus plantarum GSLP-7 V, with folate productivity in yogurt at 3.72 μg mL-1, was obtained by stressing with 5.0 mg L-1 methotrexate and 100.00 mg L-1 Ca2+. To our knowledge, this is the highest folate productivity in yogurt by LAB strains ever reported. To further examine the folate supplement effect in vivo, a folate-deficient rat model was established and fed a folate-free diet for 8 weeks. Also, the effects of L. plantrum GSLP-7 V, yogurt fermented with L. plantrum GSLP-7 V, plain yogurt, and chemical folic acid on folate deficiency and gut dysbacteriosis were examined. Analysis of the change in gut microbiota showed that the gut dysbacteriosis was significantly correlated with folate deficiency. Administration of L. plantrum GSLP-7 V and its fermented yogurt for 10 days restored the disrupted gut microbiota and recovered the serum folate and homocysteine to normal levels, while chemical folic acid worsened the gut dysbacteriosis. Chemical folic acid only enriched Akkermansia, while L. plantrum GSLP-7 V and its fermented yogurt modulated the gut microbiota comprehensively through 7 and 10 key genera, respectively. This study confirmed the effectiveness of dietary intervention with folate-biofortified yogurt through modulating gut microbiota, suggesting the potential of the folate-producing LAB as an agent for the treatment of folate-deficiency related diseases.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1039/d0fo00480dDOI Listing
July 2020

Variations in the profile distribution and protection mechanisms of organic carbon under long-term fertilization in a Chinese Mollisol.

Sci Total Environ 2020 Jun 24;723:138181. Epub 2020 Mar 24.

Institute of Environment and Resources, Heilongjiang Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Harbin 150086, China.

Long term fertilization may have a significant effect on soil organic carbon (SOC) fractions and profile distribution. However, previous research mostly explored the SOC in the topsoil and provided little or no information about its distribution in deeper layers and various protection mechanisms particularly under long-term fertilization. The present study investigated the contents and profile distribution (0-100 cm) of distinct SOC protection mechanisms in the Mollisol (black soil) of Northeast China after 35 years of mineral and manure application. The initial Organic Matter content of the topsoil (0-20 cm) ranged from 26.4 to 27.0 g kg soil, and ploughing depth was up to 20 cm. A combination of physical-chemical fractionation methods was employed to study various SOC fractions. There were significant variations throughout the profile among the various fractions and protection mechanisms. In topsoil (to 40 cm), mineral plus manure fertilization (MNPK) increased the total SOC content and accounted for 16.15% in the 0-20 cm and 12.34% in the 20-40 cm layer, while the manure alone (M) increased the total SOC by 56.14%, 48.73% and 27.73% in the subsoil (40-60, 60-80 and 80-100 cm, respectively). Moreover, MNPK and M in the topsoil and subsoil, respectively increased the unprotected coarse particulate organic carbon (cPOC) (48% and 26%, respectively), physically protected micro-aggregate (μagg) (20% and 18%, respectively) and occluded particulate organic carbon (iPOC) contents (279% and 93%, respectively) compared with the control (CK). A positive linear correlation was observed between total SOC and the cPOC, iPOC, physico-biochemically protected NH-μSilt and physico-chemically protected H-μSilt (p < 0.01) across the whole profile. Overall, physical, physico-biochemical and physico-chemical protection were the predominant mechanisms to sequester carbon in the whole profile, whereas the biochemical protection mechanisms were only relevant in the topsoil, thus demonstrating the differential mechanistic sensitivity of fractions for organic carbon cycling across the profile.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2020.138181DOI Listing
June 2020

Dose-dependent production of linoleic acid analogues in food derived Lactobacillus plantarum K25 and in silico characterization of relevant reactions.

Acta Biochim Pol 2020 03;67(1):123-129

Beijing Advanced Innovation Center for Food Nutrition and Human Health, Beijing Technology and Business University, Beijing, China.

The objective of this study was to assess and scrutinize the competency of probiotic L. plantarum K25 to produce linoleic acid analogues in the medium supplemented with different concentrations of linoleic acid, ranging from 1% to 10%, in a dose dependent manner. The analogues produced were identified and quantitated by GC-MS and in silico studies were done to confirm enzymatic reactions involved in its conversion. The results showed that L. plantarum K25 could convert linoleic acid at different concentrations to 9 different fatty acid analogues at concentrations ranging from 0.01 to 17.24 mg/L. Among these metabolites, formation of an essential fatty acid, the linolenic acid, in media supplemented with 9% linoleic acid, is being reported for the first time. Putative candidate enzymes involved in biotransformation of linoleic acid into linoleic acid analogues were identified in the whole genome of L. plantarum K25, which was sequenced previously. In silico studies confirmed that many enzymes, including linoleate isomerase and dehydrogenase, may be involved in biotransformation of linoleic acid into linoleic acid analogues. Both enzymes could effectively bind the linoleic acid molecule, mainly by forming hydrogen bonding between the acidic groups of linoleic acid and the proline residues at the active sites of the enzymes, validating putative reaction partners.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.18388/abp.2020_5167DOI Listing
March 2020

Phosphorus (P) use efficiency in rice is linked to tissue-specific biomass and P allocation patterns.

Sci Rep 2020 03 9;10(1):4278. Epub 2020 Mar 9.

National Engineering Laboratory for Improving Quality of Arable Land, Institute of Agri. Resources and Regional Planning, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Beijing, 100081, China.

Phosphorus (P) is a non-renewable resource which may be depleted within next few decades; hence high P use efficiency is need of time. Plants have evolved an array of adaptive mechanisms to enhance external P acquisition and reprioritize internal utilization under P deficiency. Tissue specific biomass and P allocation patterns may affect the P use efficiency in plants. six rice cultivars were grown in solution culture for 20 days and then were divided into two groups to receive either adequate P or no P that were harvested at 30, 40 and 50 days. Plants were dissected into various tissues/organs. Two rice cultivars viz Super Basmati (P-inefficient) and PS-2 (P-efficient) were grown in soil with no or 50 mg P kg soil till maturity. Rice cultivars PS-2 and Basmati-2000 had higher P uptake, utilization efficiency and internal remobilization than other tested cultivars after P omission. Young leaves and roots were the major sinks while stems and mature leaves were the sources of P during P omission. In conclusion, biomass allocation and P accumulation among various tissues and P remobilization were major factors responsible for P efficiency.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-61147-3DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7062884PMC
March 2020

Comparative residual effect of activated carbon and other organic amendments on immobilization and phytoavailability nickel and other metals to Egyptian Clover () in contaminated soil.

Int J Phytoremediation 2020 21;22(7):687-693. Epub 2020 Feb 21.

Department of Agronomy, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Punjab, Pakistan.

The effect of organic amendments on phytoavailability of nickel (Ni) and other metals in soil may change with time due to transformation of organic matter. We investigated the residual effect of organic amendments (farm manure [FM], poultry manure [PM], pressmud [PrM], and activated carbon [AC]) to immobilize Ni and other metals in soil and absorption of metals by Egyptian clover. Fresh and dry weights of Egyptian clover increased significantly ( < 0.05) due to residual effect of amendments compared to control. Extractable Ni and other metals had significant positive correlation with residual organic matter in soil. Extractable manganese (Mn) in post-harvest soil of Egyptian clover increased compared with that of post-harvest soil of maize (previous crop). However, extractable copper (Cu) decreased with amendments. Copper was the maximum in control followed by AC. Zinc in soil decreased in FM and PrM treated pots but increased in pots amended with PM and AC. Concentration of Ni, Mn, and Cu was the minimum in shoots of those plants grown with AC amended pots compared to the control. It was concluded that AC was the most effective for immobilization of metals in soil which consequently decreased the concentration of metals in shoots of Egyptian clover.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/15226514.2019.1707165DOI Listing
May 2020

In silico characterization of linoleic acid biotransformation to rumenic acid in food derived Lactobacillus plantarum YW11.

Acta Biochim Pol 2020 Feb;67(1):99-109

Beijing Advanced Innovation Center for Food Nutrition and Human Health, Beijing Technology and Business University, Beijing, China.

Lactobacillus plantarum YW11 capability to convert linoleic acid into conjugated linoleic acid and other metabolites was studied in a dose-dependent manner by supplementing LA at different concentrations. L. plantarum YW11 displayed a uniform distinctive growth curve of CLA and other metabolites at concentrations of LA ranging from 1% (w/v) to 10% (w/v), with slightly increased growth at higher LA concentrations. The biotransformation capability of L. plantarum YW11 evaluated by GC-MS revealed a total of one CLA isomer, i.e. 9-cis,11-trans-octadecadienoic acid, also known as the rumenic acid (RA), one linoleic acid isomer (linoelaidic acid), and LA metabolites: (E)-9-octadecenoic acid ethyl ester, trans, trans-9,12-octadecadienoic acid, propyl ester and stearic acid. All the metabolites of linoleic acid were produced from 1 to 10% LA supplemented MRS media, while surprisingly the only conjugated linoleic acid compound was produced at 10% LA. To assess the presence of putative enzymes, responsible for conversion of LA into CLA, in silico characterization was carried out. The in silico characterization revealed presence of four enzymes (10-linoleic acid hydratase, linoleate isomerase, acetoacetate decarboxylase and dehydrogenase) that may be involved in the production of CLA (rumenic acid) and LA isomers. The biotransformation ability of L. plantarum YW11 to convert LA into RA has great prospects for biotechnological and industrial implications that could be exploited in the future scale-up experiments.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.18388/abp.2020_5095DOI Listing
February 2020

Characteristic Mueller matrices for direct assessment of the breaking of symmetries.

Opt Lett 2020 Feb;45(3):706-709

Mueller polarimetry is a powerful optical technique in the analysis of micro-structural properties of optical samples. However, there is no explicit relationship between individual Mueller matrix elements and the physical properties of the sample. Several matrix decomposition algorithms corresponding to specific optical models have been proposed, which extract the physical information from measured Mueller matrices. Nevertheless, we still need a prior assessment method to decide which model is more suitable for the experimental data. In this Letter, we propose a set of characteristic Mueller matrices that allows us to obtain information about the breaking of rotation, mirror, and reciprocal symmetry properties in the sample by direct inspection of several elements of the Mueller matrix. By further analyzing the possible origin of symmetry breaking, we can learn the type and mixing status of anisotropies in the measured sample. We have verified our theory with Monte Carlo simulations of polarized light scattering in an isotropic or anisotropic medium containing different configurations of spherical and cylindrical scatterers. This study may help experimenters choose more suitable Mueller matrix decomposition methods.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/OL.375543DOI Listing
February 2020

Hypovascular pancreas head adenocarcinoma: CT texture analysis for assessment of resection margin status and high-risk features.

Eur Radiol 2020 May 17;30(5):2853-2860. Epub 2020 Jan 17.

Department of Diagnostic Imaging, Juravinski Hospital and Cancer Centre, Hamilton Health Sciences, McMaster University, 711 Concession Street, Hamilton, ON, L8V 1C3, Canada.

Objectives: To determine if CT texture analysis features are associated with hypovascular pancreas head adenocarcinoma (PHA) postoperative margin status, nodal status, grade, lymphovascular invasion (LVI), and perineural invasion (PNI).

Methods: This Research Ethics Board-approved retrospective cohort study included 131 consecutive patients with resected PHA. Tumors were segmented on preoperative contrast-enhanced CT. Tumor diameter and texture analysis features including mean, minimum and maximum Hounsfield units, standard deviation, skewness, kurtosis, and entropy and gray-level co-occurrence matrix (GLCM) features correlation and dissimilarity were extracted. Two-sample t test and logistic regression were used to compare parameters for prediction of margin status, nodal status, grade, LVI, and PNI. Diagnostic accuracy was assessed using receiver operating characteristic curves and Youden method was used to establish cutpoints.

Results: Margin status was associated with GLCM correlation (p = 0.012) and dissimilarity (p = 0.003); nodal status was associated with standard deviation (p = 0.026) and entropy (p = 0.031); grade was associated with kurtosis (p = 0.031); LVI was associated with standard deviation (p = 0.047), entropy (p = 0.026), and GLCM correlation (p = 0.033) and dissimilarity (p = 0.011). No associations were found for PNI (p > 0.05). Logistic regression yielded an area under the curve of 0.70 for nodal disease, 0.70 for LVI, 0.68 for grade, and 0.65 for margin status. Optimal sensitivity/specificity was as follows: nodal disease 73%/72%, LVI 72%/65%, grade 55%/83%, and margin status 63%/66%.

Conclusions: CT texture analysis features demonstrate fair diagnostic accuracy for assessment of hypovascular PHA nodal disease, LVI, grade, and postoperative margin status. Additional research is rapidly needed to identify these high-risk features with better accuracy.

Key Points: • CT texture analysis features are associated with pancreas head adenocarcinoma postoperative margin status which may help inform treatment decisions as a negative resection margin is required for cure. • CT texture analysis features are associated with pancreas head adenocarcinoma nodal disease, a poor prognostic feature. • Indicators of more aggressive pancreas head adenocarcinoma biology including tumor grade and LVI can be diagnosed using CT texture analysis with fair accuracy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00330-019-06583-0DOI Listing
May 2020

MRI vs. CT for the Detection of Liver Metastases in Patients With Pancreatic Carcinoma: A Comparative Diagnostic Test Accuracy Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.

J Magn Reson Imaging 2021 01 14;53(1):38-48. Epub 2020 Jan 14.

Department of Diagnostic Imaging, Juravinski Hospital and Cancer Centre, Hamilton Health Sciences, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Background: The detection of liver metastases is important for pancreatic cancer curative treatment eligibility. The data suggest that magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is more sensitive than computed tomography (CT) for the diagnosis of pancreatic cancer liver metastases. However, MRI is not currently recommended in multiple published guidelines.

Purpose: To perform a comparative diagnostic test accuracy systematic review and meta-analysis comparing CT and MRI for pancreatic cancer liver metastases detection.

Study Type: Systematic review and meta-analysis.

Data Sources: MEDLINE, EMBASE, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, Scopus, and multiple radiology society meeting archives were searched until November 2018. Comparative design studies reporting on liver CT and MRI accuracy for detection of pancreatic cancer liver metastases in the same cohort were included.

Field Strength: 1.5T or 3.0T.

Assessment: Demographic, methodologic, and diagnostic test accuracy data were extracted. Risk of bias was assessed using the Quality Assessment of Diagnostic Accuracy Studies (QUADAS)-2 tool.

Statistical Tests: Accuracy metrics were obtained using bivariate random-effects meta-analysis. The impact of different covariates on accuracy estimates was assessed using a meta-regression model. Covariates included modality, study design, tumor characteristics, risk of bias, and imaging protocols.

Results: Fourteen studies including 987 patients with pancreatic cancer (205 with liver metastases) were included. Sensitivity for CT and MRI was 45% (confidence intervals [95% CI] 21-71%) and 83% (95% CI 74-88%), respectively. Specificity for CT and MRI was 94% (95% CI 84-98%) and 96% (95% CI 93-97%), respectively. The greater observed sensitivity of MRI was preserved in the meta-regression model (P = 0.01), while no difference in specificity was detected (P = 0.16). CT sensitivity was highest for triphasic and quadriphasic examinations compared to single phase or biphasic protocols (P = 0.03). Most studies were at high risk of bias.

Data Conclusion: MRI is more sensitive than CT for pancreatic cancer liver metastases detection, accounting for confounding variables. Consideration of this finding in clinical practice guidelines is recommended.

Level Of Evidence: 3 TECHNICAL EFFICACY STAGE: 3.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jmri.27056DOI Listing
January 2021

Physicochemical and Microbiological Properties of Synbiotic Yogurt Made with Probiotic Yeast in Combination with Inulin.

Foods 2019 Oct 10;8(10). Epub 2019 Oct 10.

Beijing Advanced Innovation Center for Food Nutrition and Human Health, Beijing Engineering and Technology Research Center of Food Additives, Beijing Technology and Business University, Beijing 100048, China.

is a unique species of yeast previously characterized as a probiotic strain (CNCM I-745) among a few probiotic yeasts reported to date. Inulin is one of the most common prebiotics that exhibit twisted hydrocolloidal properties in dairy products. The present study was designed to develop a synbiotic yogurt by incorporation of and inulin at 1%, 1.5%, and 2% (w/v), comparing with the probiotic and control plain yogurts. Microrheological, microstructural, microbiological, sensory properties, and volatile compounds of the yogurt samples were evaluated. Microrheological analysis showed that addition of inulin to yogurt slightly reduced the values of G' and G″, while solid-liquid balance (SLB) values confirmed more solid properties of the synbiotic yogurt (0.582~0.595) than the plain yogurt (0.503~0.518). A total of 18 volatile compounds were identified in the synbiotic yogurt, while only five and six compounds were identified in plain and probiotic yogurts, respectively. Physiochemical parameters such as pH, acidity, and protein content were in the normal range (as with the control), while fat content in the synbiotic yogurt decreased significantly. Addition of 1% inulin not only reduced syneresis but also maintained viability of after 28 days of storage. Microstructural and microrheological studies confirmed the dense, compressed, homogeneous structure of the synbiotic yogurt. Thus, addition of inulin improved the textural and sensory properties of the synbiotic yogurt, as well as survival of with viable count above 6.0 log CFU/g in yogurt, as generally required for probiotics. Therefore, novel synbiotic yogurt with desirable quality was developed as an effective carrier for delivery of the probiotic yeast exerting its beneficial health effects.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/foods8100468DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6835504PMC
October 2019

Purity-depolarization relations and the components of purity of a Mueller matrix.

Opt Express 2019 Aug;27(16):22645-22662

A comprehensive physically realizable space, namely, the overall purity index-components of purity (PI-CP) space is proposed for the characterization of the depolarization caused by random (or deterministic) media. The overall purity index (PI)is obtained via indices of polarimetric purity which are incurred by the eigenvalues of the covariance matrix, whereas the components of purity (CP) are the functions of the elements of a Mueller matrix. On the one hand, the proposed space is useful in studying the depolarization caused by material media and on the other hand, it provides information on the diattenuation-polarizance properties of a Mueller matrix. Thus, it gives a remarkable physical insight of the depolarization problem.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/OE.27.022645DOI Listing
August 2019

The role of circulating extracellular vesicles in breast cancer classification and molecular subtyping.

Breast J 2019 07 12;25(4):691-695. Epub 2019 May 12.

Division of Nephrology, Department of Medicine, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Currently, tumor biopsies are used for breast cancer molecular subtyping. Biopsies are associated with various pathological changes and are thought to contribute to the dissemination of tumor cells. Extracellular vesicles shed by tumor cells into circulation exhibit the molecular signature of the parent cells. Herein, we show that proteomic analysis of circulating EV can discriminate BC patients from healthy subjects and indicate stage of the disease. Also, we performed a correlation between the BC molecular subtype using plasma EV and immunohistochemistry of tumor biopsies. Circulating EV may represent a useful, non-invasive tool to study the molecular makeup of BC tumors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/tbj.13309DOI Listing
July 2019

Change of proteolysis and sensory profile during ripening of Cheddar-style cheese as influenced by a microbial rennet from rice wine.

Food Sci Nutr 2019 Apr 25;7(4):1540-1550. Epub 2019 Mar 25.

Beijing Advanced Innovation Center for Food Nutrition and Human Health Beijing Technology and Business University Beijing China.

To test the potential of a novel microbial rennet isolated from traditional fermented rice wine for cheese making, Cheddar-style cheese made with this enzyme was studied for changes in composition, proteolysis, and sensory profile during 90 days of ripening in comparison with a control cheese made with a commercial rennet. The initial proteolysis assay of the microbial rennet on milk proteins indicated a notable increase in the hydrolysis of casein components (α-, β-, and κ-caseins) but no effect on whey proteins upon increasing the concentration of the enzyme. Correspondingly, compared to cheese made with commercial rennet, the use of the microbial rennet in Cheddar-style cheese resulted in significantly higher primary and secondary proteolysis in the later stages of ripening (60-90 days ripening) and thus a softer texture and the formation of more volatile compounds and free amino acids (FAAs) despite its lower moisture content (41.7%, w/w). Though the cheese made with the microbial rennet was found to contain bitter-taste FAAs (1,000 mg/100 g), the combined effect of other-taste FAAs, including sweet (231 mg/100 g), umami (225 mg/100 g), and tasteless (361 mg/100 g) FAAs, in the cheese attenuated the bitter taste of the cheese. This analysis was in accordance with the sensory evaluation, which showed no significantly different sensory scoring between the cheeses made with the microbial and commercial rennets. The present study demonstrated a novel approach to evaluate the bitter taste of ripened cheese. The results of this study suggest the potential of the microbial rennet from rice wine to serve as a new source of milk-clotting agents in cheese making.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/fsn3.1003DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6475752PMC
April 2019

Categorization of wheat genotypes for phosphorus efficiency.

PLoS One 2018 17;13(10):e0205471. Epub 2018 Oct 17.

UWA School of Agriculture and Environment, The University of Western Australia, Perth, Australia.

Production of phosphorus efficient crop cultivars can increase food productivity and decrease environmental pollution. Categorization of existing germplasm is a prerequisite to develop P efficient crop cultivars. For first experiment, 30 wheat genotypes were grown in hydroponics with two P levels (i.e., deficit, 20 μm KH2PO4 and adequate, 200 μm KH2PO4). Genotypes differed significantly for various P efficiency parameters. Two genotypes (Dirk and Bhakkar-02) showed < 25% decrease in growth at P deficiency. Genotype Seher-06 proved to be inefficient. Twelve selected genotypes based on the first experiment were sown in soil with two P levels (0 and 30 mg P kg-1) till maturity. As expected, genotypes differed for grain yield at both P levels. The efficient cultivars selected on the basis of both absolute and relative dry matter production at both P levels such as Dirk. Genotypes were grouped into three, four and nine classes on the basis of various parameters for P efficiency as proposed by different researchers. Most genotypes behaved in a similar fashion by different categorization methods and also at different P supply. The method to categorize the genotypes into three classes and plotting them into 9 classes proposed by Gill and his coworkers, is the best to differentiate the minor differences in genotypes. At least three different parameters at both P regimes should be used. The parameters may vary as per objectives of the study and/or growth conditions.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0205471PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6192622PMC
March 2019

Overexpression of MUC1 and Genomic Alterations in Its Network Associate with Prostate Cancer Progression.

Neoplasia 2017 Nov 18;19(11):857-867. Epub 2017 Sep 18.

Division of Nephrology, Department of Medicine, McMaster University; Father Sean O'Sullivan Research Institute; Hamilton Center for Kidney Research, St. Joseph's Hospital. Electronic address:

We investigate the association of MUC1 with castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC), bone metastasis, and PC recurrence. MUC1 expression was studied in patient-derived bone metastasis and CRPCs produced by prostate-specific PTEN mice and LNCaP xenografts. Elevations in MUC1 expression occur in CRPC. Among nine patients with hormone-naïve bone metastasis, eight express MUC1 in 61% to 100% of PC cells. Utilizing cBioPortal PC genomic data, we organized a training (n=300), testing (n=185), and validation (n=194) cohort. Using the Cox model, a nine-gene signature was derived, including eight genes from a MUC1-related network (APC, CTNNB1/β-catenin, GALNT10, GRB2, LYN, SIGLEC1, SOS1, and ZAP70) and FAM84B. Genomic alterations in these genes reduce disease-free survival (DFS) in the training (P=.00161), testing (P=.00699), entire (training+testing, P=5.557e-5), and a validation cohort (P=3.326e-5). The signature independently predicts PC recurrence [hazard ratio (HR)=1.731; 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.104-2.712; P=.0167] after adjusting for known clinical factors and stratifies patients with high risk of PC recurrence using the median (HR 2.072; 95% CI: 1.245-3.450, P=.0051) and quartile 3 (HR 3.707, 95% CI: 1.949-7.052, P=6.51e-5) scores. Several novel β-catenin mutants are identified in PCs leading to a rapid onset of death and recurrence. Genomic alterations in APC and CTNNB1/β-catenin reduce DFS in two independent PC cohorts (n=485, P=.0369; n=84, P=.0437). The nine-gene signature also associates with reductions in overall survival (P=.0458) and DFS (P=.0163) in melanoma patients (n=367). MUC1 upregulation is associated with CRPC and bone metastasis. A nine-gene signature derived from a MUC1 network predicts PC recurrence.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.neo.2017.06.006DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5605493PMC
November 2017

Physically Realizable Space for the Purity-Depolarization Plane for Polarized Light Scattering Media.

Phys Rev Lett 2017 Jul 21;119(3):033202. Epub 2017 Jul 21.

Shenzhen Key Laboratory for Minimal Invasive Medical Technologies, Institute of Optical Imaging and Sensing, Graduate School at Shenzhen, Tsinghua University, Shenzhen 518055, China.

We propose a physically realizable space for the polarized light scattering measurement using the Stokes-Mueller formalism by a purity-index-depolarization-index (PI-P_{Δ}) plane. The parameter PI is defined from indices of polarimetric purity (IPP), which exhibits the overall magnitude of the polarimetric randomness of a medium, while the depolarization index (P_{Δ}) delineates a proper global degree of polarimetric purity and may also refer to the average measure of depolarization power of the scattering medium. Subregions and curves connecting the edge points in the plane are obtained by imposing certain constraints on the IPP; consequently any point on the subregion indicates the information related to a decomposition of the Mueller matrix into its components as a convex sum. From the same set of constraints, complete information about the depolarization index versus the entropy [S(M)-P_{Δ}] diagram is recovered. This work provides a simple geometric representation and a deeper perceptivity of the light scattering media comprising depolarization.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevLett.119.033202DOI Listing
July 2017

Upregulation of FAM84B during prostate cancer progression.

Oncotarget 2017 Mar;8(12):19218-19235

Division of Nephrology, Department of Medicine, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Although the FAM84B gene lies within chromosome 8q24, a locus frequently altered in prostate cancer (PC), its alteration during prostate tumorigenesis has not been well studied. We report here FAM84B upregulation in DU145 cell-derived prostate cancer stem-like cells (PCSLCs) and DU145 cell-produced lung metastases compared to subcutaneous xenograft tumors. FAM84B protein was detected in bone metastases and primary PCs. Nanostring examination of 7 pairs of tumor adjacent normal and PC tissues revealed elevations in FAM84B mRNA levels in all carcinomas. Furthermore, through analysis of FAM84B expression using large datasets within the Gene Expression Omnibus and OncomineTM database, we demonstrate significant increases in FAM84B mRNA in 343 primary PCs versus 181 normal tissues, and elevations in the FAM84B gene copy number (GCN) in 171 primary PCs versus 61 normal tissues. While FAM84B was not detected at higher levels via immunohistochemistry in high grade (Gleason score/GS 8-10) tumors compared to GS6-7 PCs, analyses of FAM84B mRNA and GCN using datasets within the cBioPortal database demonstrated FAM84B upregulation in 12% (67/549) of primary PCs and 18% (73/412) of metastatic castration resistant PCs (mCRPCs), and GCN increases in 4.8% (26/546) of primary PCs and 26% (121/467) of mCRPCs, revealing an association of the aforementioned changes with CRPC development. Of note, an increase in FAM84B expression was observed in xenograft CRPCs produced by LNCaP cells. Furthermore, FAM84B upregulation and GCN increases correlate with decreases in disease free survival and overall survival. Collectively, we demonstrate a novel association of FAM84B with PC tumorigenesis and CRPC progression.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.15168DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5386679PMC
March 2017

Pancreatic Struma with Papillary Thyroid Carcinoma: a Diagnostic Dilemma.

Endocr Pathol 2017 Mar;28(1):91-94

Department of Pathobiology and Laboratory Medicine, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12022-016-9462-3DOI Listing
March 2017

Amplification of MUC1 in prostate cancer metastasis and CRPC development.

Oncotarget 2016 Dec;7(50):83115-83133

Division of Nephrology, Department of Medicine, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

Evidence supports the upregulation of MUC1 in prostate cancer (PC). However, this has not been thoroughly investigated. We report here an association of MUC1 upregulation with PC metastasis and the development of castration resistant PC (CRPC). MUC1 expression was specifically increased in DU145 cell-derived PC stem-like cells (PCSLCs) in comparison to their non-PCSLCs counterparts. While immunohistochemistry staining of 34 primary PCs revealed variability in MUC1 expression, Nanostring technology demonstrated elevated MUC1 mRNA levels in 4 of 7 PCs compared to their normal matched tissues. By analyzing MUC1 mRNA levels and gene copy number (GCN) using the OncomineTM database, elevations in MUC1 mRNA in 82 metastases versus 280 primary PCs and in MUC1 GCN in 37 metastases over 181 primary tumors were demonstrated. Analysis of genomic datasets within cBioPortal revealed increases in MUC1 GCN in 2% (6/333) of primary PCs, 6% (9/150) of metastatic PCs, and 33% (27/82) of CRPCs; in comparison, the respective increase in androgen receptor (AR) GCN was 1%, 63%, and 56%, revealing a specific increase in MUC1 GCN for CRPC. Furthermore, a 25-gene MUC1 network was amplified in 52% of CRPCs compared to 69% of CRPCs displaying increases in an AR co-regulator group. While genomic alterations in the MUC1 network largely overlap with those in the AR group, 18 CRPCs (66.7% being neuroendocrine PC) showed genomic alterations only in the MUC1 network. Moreover, genomic alterations in the MUC1 network correlated with PC relapse. Collectively, our observations suggest a combination therapy involving MUC1-based immunotherapy and androgen deprivation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.13073DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5347757PMC
December 2016

Autologous mesenchymal stromal cell transplantation for spinal cord injury: A Phase I pilot study.

Cytotherapy 2016 Apr;18(4):518-22

Armed Forces Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine, Rawalpindi, Pakistan.

Background Aims: Mesenchymal stromal cell (MSC) transplantation has immerged as promising therapeutic approach to treat spinal cord injury (SCI). In this pilot study, we investigated the safety of intrathecal injection of autologous bone marrow-derived MSCs in nine patients with SCI.

Methods: Patients with complete SCI at the thoracic level were divided into two groups: chronic (>6 months, group 1) and sub-acute SCI (<6 months, group 2), according to time elapsed since injury. MSCs were isolated by density gradient separation of autologous bone marrow harvested from the iliac crest. Cells were cultured in a Good Manufacturing Practice-compliant facility to produce clinical scale dose. After quality control testing, MSCs were injected back to patients by intrathecal injection. Safety was defined as absence of adverse event and side effects after 1 month after receiving the injection.

Results: Six patients had chronic SCI with a median duration of 33 months since date of injury (range: 10-55 months), and three patients were in sub-acute phase of disease. Each patient received two or three injections with a median of 1.2 × 10(6) MSCs/kg body weight. No treatment-related adverse event was observed during median follow-up of 720 days (range: 630-826 days) in group 1 and 366 days (range: 269-367 days) in group 2, respectively.

Discussion: This pilot study demonstrated that autologous MSCs can be safely administered through intrathecal injection in spinal cord injury patients. Further investigation through randomized, placebo-controlled trials is needed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jcyt.2016.01.004DOI Listing
April 2016

Neural Cell Adhesion Protein CNTN1 Promotes the Metastatic Progression of Prostate Cancer.

Cancer Res 2016 Mar 21;76(6):1603-14. Epub 2016 Jan 21.

Division of Nephrology, Department of Medicine, McMaster University, Hamilton, Canada.

Prostate cancer metastasis is the main cause of disease-related mortality. Elucidating the mechanisms underlying prostate cancer metastasis is critical for effective therapeutic intervention. In this study, we performed gene-expression profiling of prostate cancer stem-like cells (PCSC) derived from DU145 human prostate cancer cells to identify factors involved in metastatic progression. Our studies revealed contactin 1 (CNTN1), a neural cell adhesion protein, to be a prostate cancer-promoting factor. CNTN1 knockdown reduced PCSC-mediated tumor initiation, whereas CNTN1 overexpression enhanced prostate cancer cell invasion in vitro and promoted xenograft tumor formation and lung metastasis in vivo. In addition, CNTN1 overexpression in DU145 cells and corresponding xenograft tumors resulted in elevated AKT activation and reduced E-cadherin (CDH1) expression. CNTN1 expression was not readily detected in normal prostate glands, but was clearly evident on prostate cancer cells in primary tumors and lymph node and bone metastases. Tumors from 637 patients expressing CNTN1 were associated with prostate cancer progression and worse biochemical recurrence-free survival following radical prostatectomy (P < 0.05). Collectively, our findings demonstrate that CNTN1 promotes prostate cancer progression and metastasis, prompting further investigation into the mechanisms that enable neural proteins to become aberrantly expressed in non-neural malignancies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-15-1898DOI Listing
March 2016

Choroidal neo-vascularization presentation in younger age group (pre-senile).

J Pak Med Assoc 2014 Sep;64(9):1098-100

Age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) is the most common cause of permanent visual loss in the elderly. Advancing age, as the name suggests, is a major risk factor. Vascular endothelial growth factor. (VEGF) along with other factors could be responsible for the dramatic damage in the eyes. Although uncommon in pre-senile group, this disorder can also occur unrelated to age, such as pathologic myopia in which Fuch's spots can classically be seen. It can also occur following traumatic disruption of the Bruch's membrane. Herein we report a case of a 20-year-old healthy female with no known co-morbidities who presented with complaints of sudden central visual loss in her left eye over the course of a few days (one week) with no preceding history of traumatic event or predisposing factor. To investigate the cause, Optical Coherence Tomography/Fluorescein angiography (OCT/FFA) was ordered which exhibited the classical signs of choroidal neo-vascularization.
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September 2014

Serum proteomics in multiple sclerosis disease progression.

J Proteomics 2015 Apr 6;118:2-11. Epub 2015 Mar 6.

PROOF Centre of Excellence, Vancouver, BC V6Z 1Y6, Canada; Department of Statistics, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z4, Canada. Electronic address:

Unlabelled: Multiple sclerosis (MS) is associated with chronic degeneration of the central nervous system and may cause permanent neurological problems and considerable disability. While its causes remain unclear, its extensive phenotypic variability makes its prognosis and treatment difficult. The identification of serum proteomic biomarkers of MS progression could further our understanding of the molecular mechanisms related to MS disease processes. In the current study, we used isobaric tagging for relative and absolute protein quantification (iTRAQ) methodology and advanced multivariate statistical analysis to quantify and identify potential serum biomarker proteins of MS progression. We identified a panel of 11 proteins and combined them into a classifier that best classified samples into the two disease groups. The estimated area under the receiver operating curve of this classifier was 0.88 (p-value=0.017), with 86% sensitivity and specificity. The identified proteins encompassed processes related to inflammation, opsonization, and complement activation. Results from this study are in particular valuable to design a targeted Multiple Reaction Monitoring mass spectrometry based (MRM-MS) assay to conduct an external validation in an independent and larger cohort of patients. Validated biomarkers may result in the development of a minimally-invasive tool to monitor MS progression and complement current clinical practices.

Biological Significance: A hallmark of multiple sclerosis is the unpredictable disease course (progression). There are currently no clinically useful biomarkers of MS disease progression; most work has focused on the analysis of CSF, which requires an invasive procedure. Here, we explore the potential of proteomics to identify panels of serum biomarkers of disease progression in MS. By comparing the protein signatures of two challenging to obtain, but well-defined, MS phenotypic groups at the extremes of progression (benign and aggressive cases of MS), we identified proteins that encompass processes related to inflammation, opsonization, and complement activation. Findings require validation, but are an important step on the pathway to clinically useful biomarker discovery. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Protein dynamics in health and disease. Guest Editors: Pierre Thibault and Anne-Claude Gingras.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jprot.2015.02.018DOI Listing
April 2015

Laurence Moon Bardet Biedl Syndrome with anaemia.

J Ayub Med Coll Abbottabad 2014 Oct-Dec;26(4):625-7

Laurence Moon Bardet Biedl Syndrome is a rare genetic disorder. Consanguineous marriage is usually the common cause. Principal features of Bardet Biedl Syndrome are red cone dystrophy, obesity, polydactyl, hypogonadism and renal anomalies. The diagnosis was overlooked in our patient until he came in our hospital. We here report an infrequent case of autosomal recessive disorder with Anaemia.
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March 2015

Diagnostic accuracy of ultrasonography in acute appendicitis.

J Ayub Med Coll Abbottabad 2014 Jan-Mar;26(1):12-7

Background: The diagnosis of acute appendicitis is mainly clinical and to augment the clinical diagnosis ultrasonography and Computerized Tomographic Scan of the abdomen are also being used to help in diagnosis of the disease; which all carry some inherent limitations. This study was done to establish diagnostic accuracy of Ultrasonography (USG) in acute appendicitis taking histopathology of removed appendix as the gold standard.

Methods: This cross-sectional validation study was conducted in Radiology Department, Military Hospital and Combined Military Hospital Rawalpindi from July 2007 to January 2008. Sixty cases of clinically suspected acute appendicitis were selected on non-probability convenience sampling technique. All of them underwent ultrasound evaluation. Diagnostic accuracy of USG was calculated keeping histopathology of the removed appendix as gold standard whenever appendectomy was carried out.

Results: Out of 60 patients whose USG of right lower quadrant was performed, 30 patients were correctly diagnosed as having acute appendicitis on USG out of 34 finally diagnosed cases based on histopathology. Similarly we picked 12 normal appendices out of 26 non-appendicitis patients. This showed that US scan has sensitivity of 88%, specificity of 92%, positive predictive value of 94%, negative predictive value of 86%, and overall accuracy of 90%. The most accurate appendiceal finding for appendicitis was a diameter of 7 mm or larger followed by non- compressibility of inflamed appendix.

Conclusion: Ultrasonography has high accuracy in diagnosing acute appendicitis and reduces negative appendectomies. Greater than 6-mm diameter of the appendix under compression is the most accurate USG finding with high positive predictive value for the diagnosis of acute appendicitis.
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December 2014