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Abstract

The objective of the current study was to analyse the total phenolic concentration (TPC), total flavonoid concentration (TFC), individual phenolic compound concentration and DPPH′ radical scavenging activity of four buckwheat (raw, roasted, white and dark) flour samples obtained from the Latvian market, in comparison to those of wheat flour, which is the most common ingredient in production of cereal products. TPC, TFC, and DPPH′ radical scavenging activity values were determined using spectrophotometric methods. Phenolic compounds were determined based on the high performance liquid chromatographic method (HPLC). All buckwheat flour samples had significantly higher TPC and TFC than wheat flour. The highest TPC (974.74 mg GAE·100 g−1 DW) and TFC (495.31 mg CE·100 g−1 DW) was found in raw buckwheat flour (p < 0.05). Buckwheat flour samples demonstrated similar DPPH′ radical scavenging activity, which ranged from 21.067 to 22.644 mM TE·100 g−1 dry matter, and was significantly higher (p < 0.05) than in wheat flour (0.731 mM TE·100 g−1 of dry matter). Dark buckwheat flour contained the highest level of rutin (4.613 mg·100 g−1), whereas raw buckwheat flour displayed the highest level of 3.5-dihydroxybenzoic acid (6.356 mg·100 g−1), sinapic acid (0.947 mg·100 g−1) and epicatechin (2.608 mg·100 g−1).

Abstract

This article presents a review on population genetics of Latvians, which alongside Lithuanians are the two extant Baltic speaking populations. The article provides a description of genome-wide single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) data and contains a comparative analysis of the results of studies performed on classical autosomal genetic markers, mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and the non-recombining part of the Y chromosome (NRY), with data on neighbouring populations. The study also covers data of recently performed ancient DNA (aDNA) studies carried out on samples from the territory of today’s Latvia. The results of population genetic studies have shown a mixture of eastern and western genetic traits in present-day Latvians with only small differences between Latvian subpopulations. Studies of the Baltic “tribal gene” LWb, as well as the gene’s SERPINA1 allele PIZ have indicated the presence of a considerable Baltic admixture in the neighbouring Finno-Ugric and Slavic populations. Although mtDNA analyses have shown that Latvians genetically in general belong to the same common gene pool as most of the Europeans, the Y-chromosomal lineage composition suggests that they are most similar to Northern and Eastern European populations of Lithuanians, Estonians, and Eastern-Slavic populations, which are ethnogenetically closest to them. The analysis of aDNA from the Early and Middle Neolithic did not present any genomic evidence of gene-flow from Central European farmers or any mitochondrial or Y-chromosomal haplogroups that are typical for them in the hunter-gatherers from the territory of today’s Latvia and Lithuania.

Abstract

Consumption of dietary fibre has potential in improving nutrition and health. For further breeding of oats, it is necessary to increase knowledge on variation in the content of fibre and bioactive components in oats. Therefore, the aim of the present investigation was to study the extent of variation in β-glucan concentration of oats grown in Latvia and to evaluate association of β-glucan concentration with protein and fat concentration in newly created oat breeding lines. In 2015 and 2016, concentration of protein, fat, and β-glucan in grain of hulled oat varieties ‘Laima’, ‘Peppi’, and ten breeding lines was determined. The obtained results showed a wide range of fat concentration among varieties, with a range from 5.9 to 8.3%. The concentration of β-glucan ranged from 1.8 to 3.6% depending on the year. The β-glucan concentration had medium close positive correlation with lipid and weak significant positive correlation with protein concentration, which significantly differed among genotypes.

Abstract

Coronary artery chronic total occlusions (CTO) are common — approximately one-third of patients with significant coronary artery disease on angiography have at least 1 CTO. Invasive treatment of these lesions still remain a major challenge for interventional cardiology due to their complexity. Historically, success rates have improved to about 60–70% by using only the traditional antegrade approach. The results have dramatically improved during the last decade after more widespread application of new retrograde techniques. The aim of our study was to review and analyse single hospital experience in CTO invasive treatment and to evaluate the long-term results. A total of 519 patients undergoing percutaneous coronary interventions (PCI) for CTO at a single tertiary PCI centre (Rīga East University Hospital), were included in the study. The median age was 64 years (38–88), and 80% were male. The retrograde approach (RA) was used for 167 (32.2%) of the CTO PCI patients. The overall patient success rate was 81.3% and it increased from 73.9% in 2007 to 95.2% in 2015 (p < 0.001). Mean patient observation time was five years. Overall survival was found significantly better in patients group after successful CTO PCI procedures (Long-rank test, p = 0.013).

Abstract

Obesity can be a factor that affects the course of chronic systemic inflammatory arthritis. The objective of this study was to characterise patients with ankylosing spondylitis (AS) according to an evaluation of their body mass index (BMI) and by exploring the link between the overweightness and obesity with routinely measured disease-specific variables, including disease activity (Bath Ankylosing Spondylitis Disease Activity Index BASDAI; Ankylosing Spondylitis Disease Activity Score, using CRP, ASDAScrp), spinal mobility (Bath Ankylosing Spondylitis Metrology Index, BASMI), functional capacity (BASFI), extraspinal manifestations like fatigue, uveitis, and peripheral arthritis present during the course of the disease. A total of 107 patients were included in the cross-sectional study fulfilling the modified New York criteria for AS. Patients were divided into three groups: with the evaluation of BMI ≤ 24.9, 25.0–29.9 (overweight) and ≥ 30.0 (obesity). The mean BMI was 25.13 (SD 4.07). 33% of patients were overweight and 15% were obese. The mean values of age, duration of AS, ASDAScrp, BASDAI, Bath Ankylosing Spondylitis Functional Index (BASFI), BASMI, pain in spine, and fatigue in the group with BMI ≤ 24.9 were lower than in the other groups (p < 0.05). There was no difference between groups in age of AS onset, uveitis and peripheral arthritis. AS patients who were overweight or obese had a higher level of the disease activity, pain, fatigue, functional disability and spinal mobility impairment with worse values in the case of obesity.

Abstract

Rosacea is a chronic inflammatory skin disorder affecting predominantly adult patients. The aim of the current investigation was to evaluate clinical response by using quality of life assessment before and after an IPL (intensive pulsed light) therapy course for patients sufferring from rosacea treated in the outpatient clinic “Health and Aesthetics” in Rīga during a one-year period (in 2016). All patients presented with typical clinical symptoms of rosacea on the face — acneiform papules, pustules, telangiectasia, centrofacial erythema, and complaints about flushing and burning. In the current study, 100 rosacea patients treated with IPL therapy were selected. Each patient filled in the quality of life questionnaire before and after two courses of IPL therapy. The interval between IPL therapy sessions was one month. The results reflected comprehensive benefit from IPL therapy for all rosacea patients. No serious side effects from IPL therapy were detected. Side effects like mild eythema after procedure (75%), mild oedema (10%), vesiculation (3%), and hyperpigmentation (8%) were completely resolved within four weeks after completion of treatment. In all patients, quality of life assessment showed a statistically significant increase after two courses of IPL therapy.

Abstract

The influence of a medicinal plant extract, immobilised by ligands, on the activity of antioxidant enzymes and photosynthetic pigment concentration of wheat and maize was studied. The object of study was seed of drought-resistant firm durum wheat (Triticum durum Desf.) and maize (Zea mays L.). Seeds were subjected to general uniform γ-radiation from a 60Co source on a Rkhund installation at average dose power of MD = 0.306 Gy/sec. Before radiation seeds were treated in modified extract from medicinal plants. The treatment of seeds with 0.1 and 0.01% solution of modified extract from Hypericum, Dandelion, and Calendula caused significant reduction in processes initiated by radiation and in formation of free radicals. On the basis of the obtained results it was concluded that the used modified plant extract collection had a protective effect, reducing the amount of free radicals produced by γ-irradiation.

Abstract

The genus Artemisia is one of the largest of the Asteraceae family. It is abundant and diverse, with complex taxonomic relations. In order to expand the knowledge about the classification of Kazakhstan species and compare it with classical studies, matK genes of nine local species including endemic were sequenced. The infrageneric rank of one of them (A. kotuchovii) had remained unknown. In this study, we analysed results of sequences using two methods — NJ and MP and compared them with a median-joining haplotype network. As a result, monophyletic origin of the genus and subgenus Dracunculus was confirmed. Closeness of A. kotuchovii to other species of Dracunculus suggests its belonging to this subgenus. Generally, matK was shown as a useful barcode marker for the identification and investigation of Artemisia genus.

Abstract

Percutaneous transcatheter device closure of secundum atrial septal defects (ASD) has now largely replaced surgical closure in most centres. The aim of this study was to compare results of transcatheter and surgical ASD closure in adults in Latvia during the years 2002–2014 and to analyse long-term outcomes of transcatheter closure. We analysed data from 334 patients with secundum ASD who underwent ASD closure in Pauls Stradiņš Clinical University Hospital. Patients were included into device or surgical closure groups. In the device group, three follow-ups were made 1, 6, and 12 months after the procedure. No follow-up data were available for surgical arm patients beyond their hospitalisation period. The mean age of patients was 45.3 ± 19.9 years for the device group and 40.0 ± 16.9 years for the surgical group (p = 0.023). The mean secundum ASD size in the device and surgical groups was 14.2 ± 5.6 mm and 28.7 ± 10.0 mm, respectively (p < 0.001). No differences were observed regarding procedure success rates: 99.2% in the device group and 100% in the surgical group (p = 0.451). Periprocedural complications generally were more common in the surgical closure group. The study results show a successful introduction of the percutaneous ASD closure method in Latvia with good early and late outcomes and without significant differences in procedure success rate compared to surgical closure.

Abstract

The aim of the study was to evaluate the antimicrobial effect of sage and rosemary essential oils (EO) on microbiota of fresh chicken breast. Sample treatments were stored without packaging, vacuum-packaged, vacuum-packaged with EDTA 1.5% v/w, sage and rosemary EO treatment 0.2% v/w. Assessment of food quality was done by anaerobic plate count (APC), and Enterobacteriaceae, lactic acid bacteria (LAB) and Pseudomonas spp. counts a period of 16 days of storage at 4 ± 0.5 °C. Bacterial species were identified with a MALDI TOF MS Biotyper. Antimicrobial activity of isolates against both EO were tested. The APC varied from 2.97 log CFU/g to 6.81 log CFU/g, LAB from 2.35 log CFU/g to 3.36 log CFU/g and Enterobacteriaceae from 0.00 log CFU/g on day 0 to 4.77 log CFU/g with the highest counts on day 16 and in control unpackaged samples. Pseudomonas spp. was found only on days 0, 4, 8, and 12, with counts from 0.00 log CFU/g on day 16 to 2.89 log CFU/g on day 4 in control unpackaged samples. APC were represented by Staphylococcus and Kocuria, LAB with Lactobacillus and Enterobacteriaceae with Buttiauxella, Escherichia, Hafnia, Serratia and Yersinia. The Pseudomonas genus was represented by ten species. The best antimicrobial effect on APC, Enterobacteriaceae, LAB and Pseudomonas was achieved by application of EO. The results suggest the potential use of Salvia officinalis L. and Rosmarinus officinalis L. EOs as natural food preservatives and potential sources of antimicrobial ingredients in the food industry.