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Gh. Duca, Maria Nedealcov and Violeta Ivanov

Abstract

Aridity in new climatic conditions requires indexes which could adequately explain this process. All the more so, the quantities of atmospheric precipitations also continue to increase on the background of the temperatures increase in the conditions of the Republic of Moldova. Their variable character in the last period of time with the installation of dry and droughty periods alternating with rainy flood-provoking periods determines the selection of the most optimal ecometric indexes that could correctly explain the occurrence of pronounced desertification in the last period of time.

Open access

Gheorghe Duca, Hong Xiao, Maria Nedealcov, Violeta Ivanov and Anatol Tarita

Abstract

Current changes of the environment represent the major threats to the sustainable development and are one of the biggest problems, with negative consequences on the national economy. The accelerated pace of these changes is shareholder and by the manifestation of extreme events, which in recent years become more intense and frequent. The drought events frequent manifestation over the Republic of Moldova territory, in the context of climate change, requires a scientific monitoring adjusted.

The dry period’s manifestation is greatly conditioned by increasing daytime temperatures (above 25°C) and the lower relative humidity (below 30%). At present, on the background of climate change, there is an increase of dry days. Over the Republic of Moldova territory, their occurrence during growth and development of crops particularly damaging role in obtaining low yields. Meanwhile, prolonged dry periods, may possibly cause fires, at the same time can determine lands’ irrigation and surface water quality.

In this context, there is a need to estimate the evaporation’s spatial and temporal variability, the number of dry days and their correlation to Dry Periods Index (Izu), the index developed at regional level.

Open access

Violeta S. Rilcheva, Nina P. Ayvazova, Danail I. Martinov, Cvetomir I. Ivanov and Emiliana I. Konova

Abstract

The aim of the study was to explore the impact of oxidative stress on frozen seminal plasma in fertile and infertile men by examining the total antioxidant capacity. Patients: Infertile patients from male infertility clinic with various diagnoses and fertile men. Design: Seminal plasma from proven fertile men [n=50] and infertile patients [n=50] were examined for total antioxidant capacity (TAC) level, semen parameters such as morphology, motility and concentration, and DNA integrity test. Interventions: Seminal plasma TAC measurement by luminometric assay using the TAC assay kit, semen analysis parameters, DNA integrity test. Fertile men showed higher TAC values (median and SD): 1201µM (SD±548), as compared with the infertile patients: 831μM (SD±343). The result from sperm morphology of fertile patients showed a mean percentage of 4.8 % (SD±1.68) whereas the percentage in the infertile group was 2.68% (SD ±1.68). The same group of samples, analyzed for DNA damage showed a mean of DFI 10.38% (SD±5.17%) in fertile men and a mean of DFI 17.22% (SD±7.22%) in infertile men. Total antioxidant capacity of the seminal plasma as measured by the luminоmetric assay is a reliable and simple test for diagnosing and management of male infertility.

Open access

Eusebiu V. Gorduza, Roxana Popescu, Lavinia Caba, Iuliu Ivanov, Violeta Martiniuc, Florina Nedelea, Mariela Militaru and Demetra G. Socolov

Abstract

Background. The Down syndrome is a severe disease without pathogenic therapy. The only possibility to reduce the consequences of disease is prenatal screening and diagnosis. The gold standard in prenatal diagnosis is the conventional banding cytogenetic analysis of fetal cells obtained by invasive procedures. To reduce the complications, in the last years different methods to detect fetal cells or DNA in maternal blood were developed. Aim. The aim of study was to verify the reliability of quantification by immunoprecipitation of methylated fetal DNA in maternal blood in the prenatal diagnosis of 21 trisomy. Method. We analyzed probes from 12 pregnant women (7 with confirmed 21 trisomy pregnancy and 5 with normal pregnancy), with two being rejected for technical considerations. For each probe we carried out: extraction of total DNA (maternal and fetal), DNA fragmentation, immunoprecipitation of methylated DNA, washing, isolation of DNA and qPCR for immunoprecipitated DNA. To highlighting specific methylated regions on fetal 21 chromosome we used eight pairs of specific primers for chromosome 21. Finally we analysed the results of qPCR applying the formula D=- 6.331+0.959XEP4+1.188XEP5+0.424XEP6+0.621XEP7+0.028XEP8+0.387XEP10-0.683XEP11+ 0.897XEP12, where XEPi= fraction value for each marker. Results. In all normal pregnancies the value of D factor was negative concordant with absence of trisomy (100% specificity). In 5 from 6 pregnancies with 21 trisomy the value of D factor was positive, which indicated a high sensibility. However, to a precise estimation of this method is required a larger number of cases that allowing the obtaining of statistically validated results.

Open access

Violeta Mihailović-Vučinić, Svetlana Ignjatović, Aleksandra Dudvarski-Ilić, Mihailo Stjepanović, Mira Vuković, Maja Omčikus, Sandra Singh, Spasoje Popević, Jelica Videnović-Ivanov and Snežana Filipović

Summary

Recently published data indicate that vitamin D abnormalities are common in sarcoidosis patients. The purpose of this study was to compare serum vitamin 25(OH)D levels among sarcoidosis patients with different clinical cour - ses of the disease. The study also included the first observations on cognitive functions (i.e. depression and fatigue syndrome) in relation to vitamin D deficiency in sarcoidosis patients. At the Biochemical Laboratory of the Clinical Center of Serbia, Belgrade, vitamin D25(OH)D was measured using the Elecsys® Vitamin D total test. A total of 226 patients with biopsy-positive sarcoidosis were analyzed. The average median value of serum vitamin D was 9.47 mg/L, suggesting severe deficiency. Statistically significant correlation was found in patients with chronic disease and low levels of serum vitamin 25(OH)D (Chi-Square=6.044; df=2; p=0.014). The patient group with vitamin D serum levels higher than 20 mg/L showed higher levels of the mean forced vi tal capacity (FVC) by 380 mL, and forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1) by 220 mL, when compared to the patient group with lower serum vitamin D. A statistically significant role was established for serum vitamin 25(OH)D levels as the predictor of fatigue (R2=0.878; p=0.038 (b=0.216)) and depression in patients with sarcoidosis (R2=0.80; p=0.000 (b=0.391)). The insufficiency of 25(OH)D seems to be an important factor in predicting the course of chronic disease, significant lung function impairments and cognitive failures such as fatigue and depression. The fact that the majo rity of the analyzed sarcoidosis patients had totally deficient serum 25(OH)D levels made this finding even more notable.

Open access

Spasoje Popević, Zorica Šumarac, Dragana Jovanović, Dragan Babić, Mihailo Stjepanović, Snežana Jovičić, Dragana Šobić-Šaranović, Snežana Filipović, Branko Gvozdenović, Maja Omčikus, Anđela Milovanović, Jelica Videnović-Ivanov, Ana Radović, Vladimir Žugić and Violeta Mihailović-Vučinić

Summary

Background: Until now, a proper biomarker(s) to evaluate sarcoidosis activity has not been recognized. The aims of this study were to evaluate the sensitivity and specificity of the two biomarkers of sarcoidosis activity already in use (serum angiotensin converting enzyme – ACE and serum chitotriosidase) in a population of 430 sarcoidosis patients. The activities of these markers were also analyzed in a group of 264 healthy controls.

Methods: Four hundred and thirty biopsy positive sarcoidosis patients were divided into groups with active and inactive disease, and groups with acute or chronic disease. In a subgroup of 55 sarcoidosis patients, activity was also assessed by F-18 fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (18F-FDG-PET) scanning. Both serum chitotriosidase and ACE levels showed non-normal distribution, so nonparametric tests were used in statistical analysis.

Results: Serum chitotriosidase activities were almost 6 times higher in patients with active sarcoidosis than in healthy controls and inactive disease. A serum chitotriosidase value of 100 nmol/mL/h had the sensitivity of 82.5% and specificity of 70.0%. A serum ACE activity cutoff value of 32.0 U/L had the sensitivity of 66.0% and the specificity of 54%. A statistically significant correlation was obtained between the focal granulomatous activity detected on 18F-FDG PET/CT and serum chitotriosidase levels, but no such correlation was found with ACE. The levels of serum chitotriosidase activity significantly correlated with the disease duration (P<0.0001). Also, serum chitotriosidase significantly correlated with clinical outcome status (COS) categories (ρ=0.272, P=0.001).

Conclusions: Serum chitotriosidase proved to be a reliable biomarker of sarcoidosis activity and disease chronicity.