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Abstract

Introduction: The long-term outcome of patients with HLHS (hypoplastic left heart syndrome) is mainly determined by right ventricular function. Our study examines, whether there are differences in segmental right ventricular myocardial displacement and tissue velocities of fetuses with HLHS compared to healthy fetuses during gestation. Materials and methods: A prospective study was conducted including 20 fetuses with HLHS and 20 gestational age matched controls. c-TDI (colour tissue Doppler imaging) derived systolic and diastolic velocities as well as myocardial displacement were assessed in three different locations of the right ventricle (RV). A ROI (region of interest) was placed in the basal, middle and apical part of the myocardium. Possible changes of c-TDI indices in the course of pregnancy and between the three different segments were investigated in both groups. Results: HLHS fetuses showed significantly lower e' velocities measured in the basal and middle part of the RV compared to healthy controls (p < 0.05). Basal displacement showed significantly lower values in HLHS fetuses compared to controls. In control fetuses but not in HLHS fetuses there was a significant increase of basal diastolic velocities and displacement in the course of pregnancy. According to myocardial velocities and displacement values there was a significant decrease from the base of the fetal heart to the apex pointed in both groups. Conclusions: An altered right ventricular myocardial function in HLHS fetuses within different myocardial segments could be demonstrated. An apicobasal gradient with higher velocity and displacement values in the basal part of RV myocardium could be found in both groups. The technique may be of value in the prenatal assessment of myocardial function, however its role as a monitoring tool and outcome predictor needs to be defined.

References O'Brien M, Harries MG, Burge PS, Pepys J. Toluene diisocyanate-induced asthma. I. Reactions to TDI, MDI, HDI and histamine. Clin Allergy 1979;9:1-6. O'Brien M, Newman-Taylor AJ, Burge PS, Harries MG, Fawcett IW, Pepys J. Toluene diisocyanate-induced asthma. II. Inhalation challenge tests and bronchial reactivity studies. Clin Allergy 1979;9:7-15. Park HS, Hwang SC, Nahm DH, Yim H. Immunohistochemical characterization of the cellular infiltrate in airway mucosa of toluene diisocyanate (TDI)-induced asthma: comparison with allergic asthma. J

Abstract

The aim of this work was to investigate the diversity of diatom assemblages developed in the Przyrwa stream, to assess water quality based on benthic diatoms and to make an attempt at the identification of physicochemical factors having the greatest impact on the differentiation of diatom assemblages. Studies were conducted in 2011-2012 on the Przyrwa stream, a left-side tributary of the Wisłok River flowing through the city of Rzeszów and with its spring section located on the borders of the city. A total of 259 diatom taxa were identified in the Przyrwa stream during three studied seasons. At all investigated sites, the most abundant population consisted of Ulnaria ulna (Nitzsch) Compère, Cocconeis pediculus Ehrenb., Achnanthidium minutissimum (Kütz.) Czarnecki var. minutissimum, Navicula gregaria Donkin, Planothidium frequentissimum (Lange-Bert.) Lange-Bert., P. lanceolatum (Brébisson) Lange-Bert., Navicula lanceolata (C. Agardh) Ehrenb., Amphora pediculus (Kütz.) Grunow, Eolimna minima, (Grunow) Lange-Bert., Melosira varians C. Agardh and Cyclotella meneghiniana Kütz. Based on IPS (Specific Pollution Sensitivity Index) and GDI (Generic Diatom Index) indices, the ecological status of the Przyrwa stream was assessed as moderate to poor (mostly III-IV class of water quality), while the TDI (Trophic Diatom Index) index indicated a poor to bad ecological status (mainly IV-V class of water quality).

Abstract

Polyurethane (PU) is a polymer widely used in the biomedical field with excellent mechanical properties and good biocompatibility. However, it usually exhibits poor antibacterial properties for practical applications. Efforts are needed to improve the antibacterial activities of PU films for broader application prospect and added application values. In the present work, two PU films, TDI-P(E-co-T) and TDI-N-100-P(E-co-T), were prepared. Silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) were composited into the TDI-N-100-P(E-co-T) film for better mechanical properties and antibacterial activities, and resultant PU/AgNPs composite film was systematically characterized and studied. The as-prepared PU/AgNPs composite film exhibits much better antibacterial properties than the traditional PU membrane, exhibiting broader application prospect.

Comparative Studies of Lymph Node Cell Subpopulations and Cytokine Expression in Murine Model for Testing the Potentials of Chemicals to Induce Respiratory Sensitization

Objectives: To investigate immunological changes in lymph nodes based on expression of cell-specific receptors and cytokine expression profile and accompanying inflammatory reactions in lungs of mice treated with chemicals of known potentials to induce respiratory sensitization and those in which activity in this regard is unclear. Materials and Methods: On day 1 and 7, Balb/c mice received toluene-2,4-diisocyanate (TDI), trimellitic anhydride (TMA), 1-chloro-2,4-dinitrobenzene (DNCB), glutaraldehyde (GA), formaldehyde (FA), benzalkonium chloride (ChB) or vehicle. On day 14, they received a single intranasal instillation with the same chemical or vehicle. On day 15, auricular lymph nodes (LN) were excised and used for analyzes of T-, B-cells, expression of CD44 and for the estimation of IL-4 and IFN-γ production after in vitro stimulation with concanavalin A (ConA) and also for IL-4 and IFN-γ mRNA expression analyses using Real-Time PCR. Inflammatory changes in lungs were observed by estimation of TNF-α and MIP-2 concentrations and cell numbers and their type in BAL. Results: There were no significant changes in cell subpopulations of T helper cells in LN. The percent of B cells was significantly increased after treatment with DNCB, TDI, and GA. Increased expression of CD44 on T cells was also observed. Both IL-4 and IFN-γ were found increased in TDI- and FA-treated mice, while only IL-4 was increased in TMA-treated mice. Real-Time PCR analyses, however, showed increased IL-4 mRNA expression for TDI- and TMA-, and IFN-γ mRNA expression for DNCB-treated mice. We haven't observed significant changes in inflammatory reactions in the lungs of exposed animals. Conclusions: Studying immunological changes with first determining the activation status of T cells followed by analyzes of expression of mRNA for Th1 and Th2 cytokines in murine model could be a useful method for assessment of the potentials of chemicals to induce respiratory sensitization but is not sufficient. Addition of ventilatory measurements, but not necessarily inflammatory reactions, could complete the model.

Abstract

The paper describes the comparison of braking properties of summer and winter tyres on a vehicle Škoda Octavia II, 2.0 TDI (103 kW), with summer tyres Michelin Pilot Primacy 225/45 R17 91W and winter tyres Dunlop SP Winter Sport 3D 195/65 R15 91T. Testing was done in summer on a dry asphalt road and in winter on a snowy asphalt road with compacted snow without gritting. A device for the measuring of deceleration was XL Meter Pro Alpha.

Abstract

Modern industry and science require novel 3D optical measuring systems and laser technologies with micro/nanometer resolution for solving actual problems. Such systems, including the 3D dimensional inspection of ceramic parts for electrotechnical industry, laser inspection of wheel pair diagnostic for running trains and 3D superresolution low-coherent micro- /nanoprofilometers are presented. The newest results in the field of laser technologies for high-precision synthesis of microstructures by updated image generator using the semiconductor laser are given. The measuring systems and the laser image generator developed and produced by TDI SIE and IAE SB RAS have been tested by customers and used in different branches of industry and science.

Abstract

Uranium concentrations in groundwater taken from private drilled wells have been never determined in Poland, implying a lack of available data to quantify the human exposure to U through drinking water consumption, especially in rural areas influenced by mining activities. The main aim of the study was the assessment of human health risk related to the consumption of well waters containing U, collected from selected rural areas of the Lower Silesian region (Poland). The random daytime (RDT) sampling method was applied to the collection of well waters from three control study areas (CSA): Mniszków (CSA-A), Stara Kamienica/M. Kamienica/Kopaniec (CSA-B) and Kletno (CSA-C). The analyses of RDT samples were performed by validated method based on inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Uranium concentration ranges in well waters and the estimated geometric means for individual control study areas were: 0.005-1.03 μg/L and 0.052 μg/L (CSA-A), 0.027-10.6 μg/L and 0.40 μg/L (CSA-B), and 0.006-27.1 μg/L and 0.38 μg/L (CSA-C). The average and individual chronic daily intakes (CDI) of U by drinking water pathway (adults/children) were in the ranges of: 0.0017-0.013/0.0052-0.040 μg · kg-1 · day-1 and 0.0002-0.90/0.0005-2.71 μg · kg-1 · day-1. The average %TDI and ranges of individual %TDI (adults/children) were: 0.17%/0.52% and 0.02-3.4%/0.05-10.3% (CSA-A), 1.3%/4.0% and 0.09-35%/0.27-106% (CSA-B), and 1.3%/3.8% and 0.02-90%/0.06-271% (CSA-C). The estimated average CDI values of U through well water are significantly lower than the TDI (1 μg · kg-1 · day-1), while for individual CDI values the contribution to the TDI can reach even 90% (adults) and 271% (children), indicating essential human health risk for children consuming well water from private drilled wells located in CSA-B and CSA-C (5.3% of total number of samples collected).

Abstract

Bread, which is a major breakfast food, has been documented to be susceptible to contamination by toxic fungi metabolites (mycotoxins) in various parts of the world. Total aflatoxins (AfT) and fumonisins (FB) are two important mycotoxins known for their ability to cause health damage to animals and humans when ingested through food over a long time. This study set out to determine the presence and level of these mycotoxins in bread produced and/or consumed within Lokoja, Kogi State, Nigeria. After extraction, ELISA was used to quantify the toxins in 30 samples of bread. The outcome showed 50% (15/30) contamination of bread samples by AfT and 93.3% (28/30) contamination by FB within the ranges 0.1-5.5 μg/kg and 10-220 μg/kg respectively. Three (3) of the bread samples were contaminated by AfT beyond the safe limit, while all the samples contaminated with FB were contaminated within the safe limit. The mutual occurrence of both toxins was recorded at 46.7%. EDI for AfT and FB were estimated to be 0.0048 μg/kg bw/day and 0.3379 μg/kg bw/day respectively while risk characterisation gave an estimated TDI% of 16.896% for FB. The results suggest that chronic toxic effects rather than acute toxicity could occur from long-term exposure to AfT and FB from bread. It is therefore advised that the raw materials used in bread manufacturing should be monitored and regulated for mycotoxins.

Abstract

Functional diversity and detritus soil food web of soil inhabiting nematodes in natural woodland dominated by Acacia nilotica L. was studied. Functional diversity was studied in terms of trophic groups assessed by Trophic diversity index (TDI) and Shannon-Weaver index (H′), while food web was diagnosed by channel index (CI). The plant parasitic channel was determined by plant parasitic index (PPI). The stability of the soil ecosystem was measured in terms of maturity index (MI), structure index (SI) and enrichment index (EI). Shannon-Weaver index of the area was recorded as 2.1 ± 0.3 while trophic diversity index 2.6 ± 0.7, maturity index (MI) 3.1 ± 0.2, channel index 62.4 ± 28.1 and structure and enrichment indices 68.1 ± 18.5 and 15.4 ± 13.7 respectively. A high degree of positive correlation was recorded between population of dorylaims and MI while some degree of negative correlation existed between population of plant parasitic nematodes and MI. Population of other nematodes showed a positive correlation with SI and EI. The faunal profile was found to be tilted towards quadrat C giving the idea of relatively undisturbed ecosystem with moderate enrichment and fungal decomposition channel.