Publications by authors named "Vincenzo Nardini"

15 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Total area of inflammatory infiltrate and percentage of inflammatory infiltrate identify different clinical-serological subsets of primary Sjögren's syndrome better than traditional histopathological parameters.

Clin Exp Rheumatol 2020 Jul-Aug;38 Suppl 126(4):195-202. Epub 2020 Oct 23.

Rheumatology Unit, Azienda Ospedaliero-Universitaria Pisana, Pisa, Italy.

Objectives: Recently, the total area of the inflammatory infiltrate and the percentage of inflammatory infiltrate have been proposed as novel histopathological parameters to improve the stratification of patients with Sjögren's syndrome (SS) in clinical trials. Both these parameters provide a more accurate assessment of the extent of the infiltrate in minor salivary gland biopsies (MSGBs) and may overcome the bias related to the Focus score (FS). To date, however, only few studies have investigated their clinical value and feasibility. In this study we revised consecutive MSGBs obtained routinely in a real-life clinical setting and correlated the total area of the inflammatory infiltrate and the percentage of inflammatory infiltrate both with the other MSGB histopathological parameters and with patients' clinical features in order to explore their usefulness in SS diagnostic work-up.

Methods: We assessed the area of the inflammatory infiltrate and the percentage of the inflammatory infiltrate in consecutive MSGBs and correlated these parameters with the number of foci, the FS and the presence of ectopic lymphoid structures (ELS). We also correlated these additional parameters with patients' clinical and biological data.

Results: We revised 69 MSGB samples: 46 from patients with a diagnosis of SS and 23 from subjects with no SS. The total area of inflammatory infiltrate and the percentage of inflammatory infiltrate appeared significantly higher in patients fulfilling the ACR/EULAR classification criteria for SS and correlated significantly with both the number of foci (p<0.001) and the FS (p<0.001). Particularly, they correlated better with the ELS in MSGBs than the number of foci and the FS. When we limited the analysis to the 32/69 patients with a FS<1, both the total area of the inflammatory infiltrate (p=0.02) and the percentage of the inflammatory infiltrate (p=0.03), but not the number of foci (p=0.12) remained significantly higher in the 10/32 anti-Ro/SSA positive patients fulfilling the ACR/EULAR classification criteria. Finally, the total area of inflammatory infiltrate and the percentage of inflammatory infiltrate correlated significantly with several biological and haematological SS-related abnormalities including hypergammaglobulinaemia, C4 levels, total number of white blood cells and the number of circulating lymphocytes.

Conclusions: The total area of the inflammatory infiltrate and the percentage of the inflammatory infiltrate in SS referral centres, and particularly for selected cases, may maximise the information on disease activity at tissue level, ultimately improving SS patients' assessment.
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October 2020

The multiagency approach to Sudden Unexpected Infant Deaths (SUID): eleven years' experience in the Tuscany Region.

Ital J Pediatr 2020 Jul 20;46(1):99. Epub 2020 Jul 20.

Sleep Breathing Disorders and SIDS Centre, Meyer Children's Hospital, Florence, Italy.

Background: The Sudden Unexpected Infant Death Syndrome (SUID) is one of the leading causes of mortality in the first year of life. The aim of this work was the retrospective evaluation of the incidence of SUID and the effectiveness of the multiagency approach to this phenomenon in the Tuscany Region.

Methods: Data were obtained from the regional registry of SUID cases in the period 2009-2019. The registry contains both sudden unexpected deaths in the first week of life (Sudden Unexpected Early Neonatal Deaths - SUEND), and those occurring after the first week up to 1 year of age (SUID).

Results: In this timeframe a total of 73 sudden unexpected deaths occurred in our region; 32 were Unexplained (i.e. Sudden Infant Death Syndrome - SIDS), 24 Explained, 10 Undetermined, and 7 SUEND. Autopsies were performed in 91% of cases, and in 95% of these by three groups of selected pathologists according to our protocol. We found a low incidence of SUID (0.21 ‰), and SIDS deaths accounted for 0.1‰ of live births (48% of cases) with a high prevalence of infants of non-Italian ethnicity (38% of cases). Bereaved families were able to receive psychological support from mental health professionals and have contact with the family association, Seeds for SIDS. Audits were organized when post-mortem examinations were not carried out or carried out incorrectly in procedural terms, and when the diagnosis was particularly uncertain.

Conclusions: This paper first provides data on SUID mortality based on complete post-mortems in an Italian region. According to these findings we can state that our approach is effective both in terms of correctly performed autopsies and support for bereaved families. Future efforts are necessary to further reduce the incidence of SUID especially among non- Italian infants. An improvement action is also recommended for ensuring a more accurate and consistent picture of the circumstances of death. The final approval of the National Protocol for the management of SUID cases is therefore strongly advocated in order to improve surveillance in this specific field and abolish disparities among the Italian regions.
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July 2020

EGFR and AKT1 overexpression are mutually exclusive and associated with a poor survival in resected gastric adenocarcinomas.

Cancer Biomark 2018 Feb;21(3):731-741

Medical Oncology, University Hospital of Pisa, 56126 Pisa, Italy.

Purpose: The evaluation of molecular targets in gastric cancer has demonstrated the predictive role of HER2 amplification for trastuzumab treatment in metastatic gastric cancer. Besides HER2, other molecular targets are under evaluation in metastatic gastric tumors. However, very little is known about their role in resected tumors. We evaluated the expression of HER2, EGFR, MET, AKT1 and phospho-mTOR in resected stage II-III adenocarcinomas.

Methods: Ninety-two patients with resected stomach (63%) or gastro-esophageal adenocarcinomas (27%) were evaluated. Antibodies anti-HER2, EGFR, MET, AKT1 and phospho-mTOR were used for immunostaining of formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded slides. Using FISH, HER2 amplification was evaluated in cases with an intermediate (+2) staining.

Results: EGFR overexpression (11%) was a poor prognostic factor for overall survival (3-year OS: 47% vs 77%; Log-Rank p= 0.033). MET overexpression (36%) was associated with a trend for a worse survival (3-year OS: 65% vs 77%; Log-Rank p= 0.084). HER2 amplification/overexpression and mTOR hyper-phosphorylation were observed in 13% and 48% of tumors, respectively. AKT1 overexpression (8%) was not a prognostic factor by itself (p= 0.234). AKT1 and EGFR overexpression was mutually exclusive and patients with EGFR or AKT1 overexpression experienced a poor prognosis (3-year OS: 52% vs. 79%, Log-Rank p= 0.005).

Conclusions: EGFR is confirmed a poor prognostic factor in resected gastric cancers. We firstly describe a mutually exclusive overexpression of EGFR and AKT1 with potential prognostic implications, suggesting the relevance of this pathway for the growth of gastric cancers.
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February 2018

Genomic instability and cellular stress in organ biopsies and peripheral blood lymphocytes from patients with colorectal cancer and predisposing pathologies.

Oncotarget 2015 Jun;6(17):14852-64

Unità di Genetica, Dipartimento di Biologia, University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and polyps, are common colorectal pathologies in western society and are risk factors for development of colorectal cancer (CRC). Genomic instability is a cancer hallmark and is connected to changes in chromosomal structure, often caused by double strand break formation (DSB), and aneuploidy. Cellular stress, may contribute to genomic instability. In colorectal biopsies and peripheral blood lymphocytes of patients with IBD, polyps and CRC, we evaluated 1) genomic instability using the γH2AX assay as marker of DSB and micronuclei in mononuclear lymphocytes kept under cytodieresis inhibition, and 2) cellular stress through expression and cellular localization of glutathione-S-transferase omega 1 (GSTO1). Colon biopsies showed γH2AX increase starting from polyps, while lymphocytes already from IBD. Micronuclei frequency began to rise in lymphocytes of subjects with polyps, suggesting a systemic genomic instability condition. Colorectal tissues lost GSTO1 expression but increased nuclear localization with pathology progression. Lymphocytes did not change GSTO1 expression and localization until CRC formation, where enzyme expression was increased. We propose that the growing genomic instability found in our patients is connected with the alteration of cellular environment. Evaluation of genomic damage and cellular stress in colorectal pathologies may facilitate prevention and management of CRC.
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June 2015

Correlation between placental histopathology and fetal/neonatal outcome: chorioamnionitis and funisitis are associated to intraventricular haemorrage and retinopathy of prematurity in preterm newborns.

Gynecol Endocrinol 2011 May 8;27(5):319-23. Epub 2010 Jun 8.

Neonatology and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Department of Pediatrics, S. Chiara Hospital/University of Pisa, Italy.

Introduction: Placental anatomopathologic lesions are usually associated with pregnancy complications and neonatal impaired outcome.

Patients And Methods: We included in our study 122 patients with gestational age of 26-35 weeks. From the analysis of three pathological aspects (chorioamnionitis, funisitis and chronic hypoxia), a score was assigned to each lesion depending on the severity of the alteration, to establish a correlation with an impaired neonatal outcome in preterm newborns.

Results: We found a correlation between chronic hypoxia and preeclampsia, intrauterine growth restriction and/or small-for-gestational age status at birth. Our results also showed the strong association of fetal placental inflammatory status (chorioamnionitis and funisitis) with premature rupture of membranes, very low birth weight, birth at/before 32 gestational weeks, late-onset sepsis, patent duct arteriosus, intraventricular haemorrhage (IVH) and retinopathy of prematurity (ROP).

Conclusions: We confirm that placental lesions are associated with impaired pregnancy and neonatal outcome. During pregnancy it may be useful to identify some markers of inflammatory status and chronic hypoxia for an early diagnosis and a detailed monitoring of pregnancy course. Placental pathological analysis is very important to predict the risk of developing serious complications of preterm birth as ROP and IVH.
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May 2011

Drug addiction during pregnancy: correlations between the placental health and the newborn's outcome - elaboration of a predictive score.

Gynecol Endocrinol 2009 Dec;25(12):786-92

U.O. of Neonatology, S. Chiara Hospital, University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.

During pregnancy, drug addiction represents one of the most dangerous situations. Each drug can badly affect the fetal development and, when the pregnancy is over, the negative influence continues in the newborn which is exposed to many risks, in particular the withdrawal syndrome. Since it is difficult to predict the newborn's outcome only on the basis of the kind of drug assumed by the mother during pregnancy, we propose the idea of a score based on the placenta's state of health. The aim of the study is to correlate the placental score to the withdrawal symptoms graveness. Our retrospective study includes 35 newborns exposed in uterus to illegal and legal drugs. We used the Finnegan's scoring system to quantify withdrawal symptoms and the placental score, based on the anatomopathological analysis, to assess the placenta's health. The newborns included in our study have been divided into two groups depending on the result of the placental score (< or =2 or > or =3). We found a significant statistical difference between the newborns whose placental score was low (< or =2) and those whose score was high (> or =3): the second group showed severe withdrawal symptoms for a longer time during the hospital stay (p = 0.014).
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December 2009

An anencephalus foetus petrified by Gerolamo Segato (1792-1836).

Med Secoli 2008 ;20(1):7-17

Department of Oncology, Medical School, Pisa University, Pisa, Italy.

We report the case of an anencephalic foetus petrified by Gerolamo Segato in the course of his experiments on body conservation. The specimen has been studied applying non-invasive methods. Digital radiography and computed tomography (CT) alogside more advanced techniques such as three-dimensional (3-D) reconstruction and virtual endoscopy (VE) have been used to investigate anatomic morphology and to perform hypotheses about Segato's method of petrification which is still unknown.
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July 2009

Large needle percutaneous aspiration biopsy of the testicle in men with nonobstructive azoospermia: technical performance.

Biomed Pharmacother 2006 Nov 28;60(9):557-60. Epub 2006 Aug 28.

Department of Reproduction and Aging, University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.

The aim of this study was to relate retrospectively in 215 percutaneous large needle aspiration biopsy (LNAB) of the testicles the number of seminiferous tubules (ST) per testicular biopsy, from differently sized testicles, to the size of the needle used in order to obtain information useful for selecting the needle size according to the testicular size. Clinical, ultrasonographic and pathologic data of 134 patients with nonobstructive azoospermia examined with LNAB were retrospectively analyzed. One hundred and sixty-three testicles with volume>or=10 ml, 39<10 ml and>or=6 ml, 13<6 ml underwent 215 LNABs. In the larger testicle group the prevalence of adequate biopsies (ST>/=20) varied from 83% to 50% with a statistically significant difference among the needle groups (P=0.028) and being 83% in the biopsies with the 18 gauge (g.) needle. The mean number of ST obtained with the 18 g. needle was significantly higher than that obtained with the other needles (P=0.000). In the medium volume testicle group the adequate biopsy incidence varied from 20% to 83.3% with statistical significance among the various needle groups (P=0.042) being 83.3% in the biopsies with the 22 g. needle. In the smaller testicle group the mean number of ST obtained with the 22 g. needle was significantly higher than with the 20 g. needle (71 versus 25, P=0.011). In the patients with nonobstructive azoospermia, the 18 g. needle seemed to offer the best performance in the larger testicles, while in the medium and lower sized testicles the smaller 22 g. needle gave results comparable to or slightly better than the other larger needles.
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November 2006

Large-needle percutaneous aspiration biopsy of the testicle in men with nonobstructive azoospermia.

Fertil Steril 2006 Aug 6;86(2):464-5. Epub 2006 Jun 6.

Department of Reproduction and Ageing, Division of Andrology, University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.

Two hundred thirteen testicular specimens of men with nonobstructive azoospermia were obtained by large-needle percutaneous aspiration biopsy. The mean values of the number of seminiferous tubules per histologic section, dimension, weight, and the fraction of biopsies with spermatogenetic cells (53, 0.2 x 0.3 x 0.62 cm, 385 mg, and 63%, respectively) were similar to those obtained by open or other surgical biopsy techniques that were used for assisted fertilization in the same type of patients.
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August 2006

Fine-needle and large-needle percutaneous aspiration biopsy of testicles in men with nonobstructive azoospermia: safety and diagnostic performance.

Fertil Steril 2005 Apr;83(4):1029-33

Department of Reproduction and Aging, University of Pisa, Spedali Riuniti Santa Chiara, Via Roma 67, 56126 Pisa, Italy.

Objective: To assess by ultrasonography the safety of the association fine-needle aspiration (FNA) plus a new percutaneous large-needle aspiration biopsy technique (LNAB), and to compare the results obtained with the two techniques in the same testicle and with FNA in the two testicles of the same patient.

Design: Retrospective analysis of clinical, ultrasonographic, and pathologic data.

Setting: Clinical and academic research environment.

Patient(s): Three hundred and eighty-seven testicles of 233 patients (ages 19 to 57 years) with nonobstructive azoospermia were consecutively examined with FNA (154) or FNA + LNAB (233); 54 patients (89 testicles) examined with FNA + LNAB underwent a second ultrasonography up to 63 days after.

Intervention(s): Ultrasonography, FNA, LNAB.

Main Outcome Measure(s): Hypoechoic area at ultrasonography; cytologic picture at FNA or LNAB of only Sertoli cells (category 1), spermatogenetic cells different from elongated spermatids or spermatozoa (category 2), and elongated spermatids and/or spermatozoa (category 3).

Result(s): Among the 54 patients monitored by ultrasonography 48 (88.9%) showed no difference and 6 (11.1%) showed an hypoechoic area < or =1 cm in the second image. Category 1 occurred at FNA or LNAB in a very similar number of testicles (36% vs. 36.9%). Categories 2 and 3 were more frequent at LNAB (29.9% vs. 9.8%) and at FNA (54.2% vs. 33.2%), respectively. One hundred and sixty-six patients had both testicles examined by FNA; 147 pair of testicles were concordant for the presence or the absence of spermatozoa or elongated spermatids. In the remaining 19 patients (11.4%), these spermatogenetic cells were shown only in the specimen from one of the two testicles. These 19 patients accounted for 20.0% of 93 patients with spermatogenetic cells in at least one of the two testicles.

Conclusion(s): The combination of FNA and LNAB did not produce clinically or subclinically relevant complications. No important differences in the identification of category 1 with FNA or LNAB were found. Fine-needle aspiration was more adequate in identifying category 3, which was particularly relevant in 20% of the men who had these cells in at least one of the two testicles.
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April 2005

Chemotherapy with epirubicin and paclitaxel for breast cancer during pregnancy: case report and review of the literature.

Anticancer Res 2003 Nov-Dec;23(6D):5225-9

Department of Procreative Medicine, Division of Gynecology and Obstetrics, University of Pisa, Via Roma 67, 56127 Pisa, Italy.

Background: Breast cancer diagnosed during pregnancy is a challenging clinical situation. Little data are currently available about chemotherapy in pregnant women with this malignancy.

Case Report: We report the case of a 36-year-old pregnant woman with a T2N1M0 breast cancer who received sequential chemotherapy including epirubicin (120 mg/m2 every three weeks for four cycles) and paclitaxel (175 mg/m2 every three weeks for three cycles) from the 14th to the 32nd week of gestation. The patient delivered a normal female baby by caesarean section at the 36th week. The immunohistochemical examination of the placenta showed a diffuse, strong P-glycoprotein expression. Thirty-six months after the delivery, the mother was disease-free and the infant showed normal development and growth.

Discussion: Sequential chemotherapy including epirubicin and paclitaxel should be taken into consideration as adjuvant treatment for pregnant women with high-risk breast cancer. The strong placental expression of P-glycoprotein may play a major role in limiting fetal exposure to anthracyclines and taxanes.
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April 2004

Second-trimester diagnosis of intracranial vascular anomalies in a fetus with subdural hemorrhage.

Prenat Diagn 2004 Jan;24(1):31-4

Division of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.

Objectives: Risk factors for intracranial hemorrhage occurring in prenatal life are imperfectly known. A case of prenatal diagnosis of subdural hemorrhage associated with multiple intracranial vascular aneurysms is described.

Methods: Sonography and magnetic resonance imaging of the fetal head were obtained at 21 weeks' gestation and compared with pathologic findings.

Results: Sonography showed a large transonic mass displacing the normal intracranial structures. Magnetic resonance imaging demonstrated the hemorrhagic origin of the mass and showed multiple vascular anomalies. Postmortem examination confirmed the compression of the cerebral hemisphere by a blood collection, probably because of bleeding from one of the multiple vascular aneurysms into the subdural space.

Conclusion: Magnetic resonance imaging with the use of single-shot ultrafast sequences may be useful not only in the differential diagnosis of fetal intracranial hemorrhage but also in identifying vascular risk factors.
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January 2004

Feline cutaneous neuroendocrine carcinoma (Merkel cell tumour): clinical and pathological findings.

Vet Dermatol 2003 Apr;14(2):111-5

Department of Surgery, Laboratory of Pathology, University of Pisa, Italy.

A case of a feline Merkel cell tumour is described. An 8-year-old, female cat developed a round, alopecic, reddish mass on the nose. Wide excisional surgery was performed with cartilage resection. Histologically the mass was composed of solid islands of mostly basophilic densely packed cells with a scant cytoplasm, which was suggestive of a neuroendocrine origin. Results of immunohistochemical studies using antibodies against neurone-specific enolase, chromogranin, synaptophysin and pan-cytokeratin allowed classification of the lesion as a Merkel cell tumour. Ultrastructurally, dense core granules were identified in the cytoplasm. In a 2-year follow-up no relapses or metastases were observed. The clinical course recorded is in contrast with the malignant nature of a Merkel cell tumour recently described in a cat and of the human Merkel cell tumour, but is similar to the course of the canine Merkel cell tumour which is often benign. Early diagnosis along with the use of wide surgical excision might be considered an important factor in preventing relapse of this tumour.
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April 2003

Spermatogenesis in azoospermic, formerly cryptorchid men. Use of needle aspiration techniques.

Acta Cytol 2002 Sep-Oct;46(5):848-54

Divisions of Andrology, Department of Reproduction and Aging, University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.

Objective: To assess the use of testicular needle aspiration techniques to evaluate fertility potential in azoospermic, formerly cryptorchid men.

Study Design: Fifteen consecutive adult azoospermic, formerly cryptorchid patients (eight unilateral and seven bilateral) were examined by needle aspiration techniques, fine (FNA) and large needle (LNAB) testicular aspiration biopsy, for cytologic and histologic analysis. Five of the 15 subsequently underwent surgical biopsy for attempted assisted fertilization.

Results: Spermatozoa or spermatids were detected by FNA cytology or LNAB histology in one or both testicles in 87.5% of the unilateral and 28.6% of the bilaterally affected, formerly cryptorchid patients (P = .041, Fisher's exact test). The addition of LNAB to FNA identified spermatids in one patient with unilateral cryptorchidism and only Sertoli cells on FNA cytology. Furthermore, LNAB differentiated testicles with the cytologic finding of only Sertoli cells into those with or without diffuse fibrosis. In the five patients in whom assisted fertilization was attempted, the needle aspiration techniques predicted the presence or absence of spermatozoa in the subsequent surgical biopsy.

Conclusion: The two needle aspiration techniques can be used to assess the fertility potential of azoospermic, formerly cryptorchid men and to select patients for assisted fertilization.
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October 2002

Detection of enteroviral infection in myocardial tissues by polymerase chain reaction (PCR).

Clin Microbiol Infect 1996 ;2(2):109-114

Institute of Cardiology, Cisanello Hospital, University of Pisa, Italy.

OBJECTIVE: To determine if enteroviral infection is linked to myocarditis and dilated cardiomyopathy. Enteroviruses, especially coxsackieviruses, appear to be the most common agents of viral myocarditis. METHODS: We collected 53 endomyocardial biopsies and two autopsy specimens from 41 patients affected by myocarditis or dilated cardiomyopathy. The patients were diagnosed clinically, hemodynamically, virologically and histologically (Dallas classification). We tested for the presence of enteroviral sequences by PCR, using 5prime prime or minute non-coding (coxsackievirus B3, CB3, map position 450--474, 584--603) derived primers. Specificity was confirmed using the Southern blot. We used a fraction of CB3 acutely infected mouse myocardial tissue as a control. RESULTS: We detected enteroviral sequences in four patients with active myocarditis, borderline myocarditis or cardiomyopathy. The patient with active myocarditis had shown neutralizing antibodies in serologic analysis for coxsackievirus B3 and B5. CONCLUSIONS: The data support a weak link of enteroviral infection to human myocarditis and dilated cardiomyopathy, at least when using a PCR assay on biopsies.
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January 1996