Degenerative aortic stenosis is the second most common acquired valvular heart disease in adults (after mitral insufficiency) and the second most common cause for cardiac surgery (after coronary heart disease). The reasons for the occurrence of these diseases (congenital abnormality of the valve: bicuspid aortic valve disease, advanced renal failure, impaired calcium-phosphorus metabolism) have been established only in a small portion of these patients. The absence of a specific reason, causing calcification and narrowing of the aortic valve in recent years has challenged researchers to start investigating genetic factors that may correlate with the development of degenerative aortic stenosis. Regardless of the conducted studies, knowledge and identification of predictive genetic factors in the occurrence and progression of aortic stenosis are still insufficient. It is assumed that a specific genetic variant in the Lipoprotein (a) locus (LPA locus), reflected by the Lipoprotein (a) [Lp(a)] plasma levels, is connected to the pathology of aortic stenosis in multiethnic groups. The study of the genetic nature of aortic stenosis and significance of Lp( a) plasma levels and genetically determined variations of its structure associated with the manifestation and progression of valvular calcification in the future might provide predictive intervention. Similar studies relating to genetic polymorphisms in LPA locus, plasma concentrations of Lp(a) and their correlation with aortic stenosis have not beenconducted in Bulgaria so far.
Recently, the important role of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) has been identified in follicular development and subsequent ovulation. Although the role of MMP in ovarian tissue remodeling during folliculogenesis has been well studied, the relationship between matrix protease activity and their inhibitors - Tisue inhibitors of matrix metalloproteinases (TIMP) and aging of the oocytes is still unclear. The present study aimed to establish the probable relationship between the expression levels of MMP-2 and TMP-1 and TIMP-2 in follicular fluid with the degree of oocyte maturity and quality. Follicular fluids from 20 women collected on the day of follicular puncture were tested for the presence of MMP-2, TIMP-1, and TIMP-2 using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). The oocytes obtained were described in terms of maturity, morphology, and fertilization, as well as the embryo’s quality and rate of development. MMP-2 was significantly higher in follicular aspirates in the first prophase of meiosis - germinal vesicle (GV), compared to aspirates with first metaphase (MI) (p=0.011) and second metaphase (MII) of mature oocytes (p=0.010). The MMP-2/TIMP-1 ratio was significantly higher for GV compared to M1 (p=0.011), M2 (p=0.006) and atretic oocytes (p=0.032); (F(3, 71)=2.909, p=0.040). Based on our results, we can conclude that MMP-2 concentration in follicular fluids during the IVF / ICSI procedure had a significant relationship to oocyte maturation levels. It was significantly higher in the case of immature oocytes. On the other hand, oocytes with normal morphology were associated with a significantly higher MMP-2 concentration in follicular fluids.
Immune thrombocytopenia (ІTP) is one of the most common causes of clinically overt hemorrhage. Despite the progress made in recent years in clarifying the pathogenesis of the disease, the exact unlockmechanisms still remain unclear. The aim of the study was to correlate the oxidative stress markers and the severity of immune thrombocytopenia in adults and to investigate their predictive value of transforming the acute formof ITPinto chronicІTP.We studiedatotal of 58 subjects (14 patients with newly diagnosedІTP, 13 patients with chronic form ofІTR, and 31 controls). The plasma levels of human pantetheinase ( vanin-1) and lipid hydroperoxides were measured using commercial assay kits.We found that the form of the disease was not significantly related to the plasma vanin-1 levels (p=0.120). Asignificant difference in the vanin-1concentrations was observed between newly diagnosed IPTand the controls (p=0.046). Further studies with larger and more homogenous groups of patients and including more indicators of oxidative stress are needed to be able to draw statistically valid conclusions about the role of oxidative biomarkers in diagnosing and treatment ofІTP.
Osteoporosis is a systemic skeletal disease characterized by decreased bone mass, destruction of the microarchitectonics of bone structure and a high risk for fracture. One of the criteria for altered bone homeostasis includes the changes in serum levels of alkaline phosphatase (ALP) and the activity of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs). The purpose of this study was to determine the serum concentrations of calcium (Ca2+), phosphorus (P), magnesium (Mg2+), alkaline phosphatase (ALP) and MMP-9 in ovariectomized rats. We used 35 female Wistar rats at reproductive age (2 months) divided into 2 groups: a control group (G1-SHAM) – 20 animals subjected to “false” ovariectomy and placebo-operation, and an ovariectomized group (G2-OVX) – 15 animals subjected to bilateral ovariectomy. Blood was collected from the abdominal aorta for testing levels of Ca2 +, P, Mg2+, ALP and MMP-9. No statistically significant differences in serum concentrations of Ca2+, P and Mg2+ were found between G2 and G1 (p>0.05). The values of ALP and MMP-9 in rats of G2 were statistically significantly increased, as compared to G1 (p<0.05). The serum activity of ALP, which is a marker for bone formation, was increased in OVX-induced osteoporosis. Elevated serum MMP-9 levels in G2 confirmed the hypothesis that it is a marker for osteoclast activity.