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Daniel Vasile Balaban, Alina Popp, Acs Beata, Florina Vasilescu and Mariana Jinga
Background. Celiac disease (CD) is significantly underdiagnosed, despite significant efforts made in the last decades to increase its diagnostic rate. This has lead to a high need for developing new diagnostic strategies. Our aim was to evaluate the diagnostic performance of two routine hematologic indices for CD. Methods. In a prospective observational study, 34 newly diagnosed CD patients, 34 age-sex matched controls with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and 16 treated CD patients were assessed regarding the differences in mean lymphocyte count (LY), red blood cell distribution width (RDW) and their ratio (RDW/LY). Results. Elevated RDW (>14) and lymphopenia (<1.5 x 10e9/L) were more frequently seen in newly diagnosed CD patients compared to IBS control group and treated CD patients. Newly diagnosed CD patients had significantly higher mean values of RDW/LY - 10.09, compared to 7.72 in the CD-treated group and 6.79 in IBS controls (p<0.01). Subgroup analysis revealed that RDW/LY was higher in patients with destructive histology (Marsh≥3a), 10.54 vs. 7.99. For a value over 7, RDW/LY had a sensitivity of 88.24% (95% CI 72.55-96.70%) and AUROC of 0.785 (95% CI 0.683- 0.887). Conclusions. RDW/LY ratio is a widely available tool which could be used routinely in clinical practice for CD screening.
Cuma Mertoglu, Murat Gunay, Ali Gurel, Mehmet Gungor and Vahdet Gul
Purpose: Acute kidney injury (AKI) is a severe kidney disease carrying high morbidity and mortality. An ischemic process, at the cellular level, has been detected prior to the full-blown AKI. An elevated ischemic modified albumin (IMA) was also found to be increased fast at several minutes following an ischemic process in the body. In this connection, we have investigated, in advance, the changes of IMA concentrations in patients with possible AKI. Methods: IMA and other biochemical and haematological parameters were measured in sera of thirty nine patients with AKI and of thirty eight healthy controls. AKI is defined by an increase in serum creatinine by ≥ 0.3 mg/dl in 48 hours or an increase by ≥ 1.5-fold from a known or assumed baseline. The results in the two groups were compared. Results: IMA, creatinine, blood urea nitrogen, white blood cell, neutrophil, neutrophil-lymphocyte ratio (NLR), platelet-lymphocyte ratio (PLR) and mean platelet volume were found to be higher in patients with AKI than in healthy controls. In contrast, total protein, albumin, lymphocyte, and haemoglobin were lower in patients with AKI than in healthy controls. No significant difference was recorded in platelet counts between the two groups. Conclusion: Our results indicate that increased levels of NLR and PLR play a central role in a systemic inflammation in AKI. Monitoring serum IMA could be a useful tool in the assessment of AKI.
The mountain lion range once extended throughout the state of Minnesota. The breeding population has been greatly reduced with time, new roads, and timber harvesting, which have broken large tracts of contiguous forest into isolated patches that are too small and no longer suitable for the breeding mountain lion population. The objective of this study is to use suitability analysis to determine the most suitable habitat to conserve mountain lion populations threatened by habitat fragmentation. To attain our objective, we created three sub models that contribute to the overarching goal of the suitability model. A habitat sub model was developed for finding the best habitat, a food sub model for access to the maximum amount of food needed, and a security sub model focusing on the distance from houses, roads, and urban development. Using the Weighted Sum tool, the three sub models were combined to produce a suitability surface based on the trade-off of the preferences of the goals represented by each sub model. Our suitability model shows large areas of high-quality mountain lion habitat in the northern and north-eastern sections of the state. These areas contain favourable locations for mountain lion habitat, such as forested land cover, low-density populations, steep slopes, short distances to streams, and area unimpeded by major roads. The southern and western parts of the state are characterized by lower slopes, more agricultural land, grassland, developed land, and higher population density, which results in lower quality habitat. The twin cities have the worst mountain lion habitat.
Omar Sadik, Lia Mara Ditu, Irina Gheorghe, Alina Maria Holban, Carmen Curutiu, Gratiela Gradisteanu Parcalabioru, Ionela Avram, Otilia Banu, Othman Al-mahdawy, Dunya A. Alkurjia and Mariana Carmen Chifiriuc
In recent years, a significant number of epidemiological variations have been observed for fungal infections. In immunocompromised patients, Candida albicans is crucially involved in invasive infections, mostly originating in respiratory tract colonization. The global rise in candidiasis has led researchers to investigate possible correlations between fungal strains virulence profiles and their pathogenic potential, among the most investigated genes being those involved in adherence and biofilm development. In this study, we established the adherence gene profiles of C. albicans strains isolated from respiratory tract secretions in patients hospitalized for cardiovascular diseases and correlated them with the ability of the respective strains to colonize the epithelial cells and form biofilms on the inert substratum. The strains isolated from the lower respiratory tract exhibited the highest adherence capacity and were intensive biofilm producers. The SAP9, ALS3, ALS5, and ALS6 genes were the most frequently detected. There was a significant association between the presence of ALS 3 gene and the cellular substrate colonizing potential of the harboring strains. We also found that the strains expressing SAP9 were more virulent in the phenotypic assays. Detecting the presence of adherence genes from different clinical isolates is a cost-effective tool that would allow researchers to predict the virulence of a certain strain and estimate its potential to adhere to host cells and develop biofilms.