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AIMS - We conducted a prospective study of emergency department (ED) patients with acute heart failure (AHF) to determine if worsening HF (WHF) could be predicted based on urinary electrolytes during the first 1-2 h of ED care. Loop diuretics are standard therapy for AHF patients. A subset of patients hospitalized for AHF will develop a blunted natriuretic response to loop diuretics, termed diuretic resistance, which often leads to WHF. Early detection of diuretic resistance could facilitate escalation of therapy and prevention of WHF.
METHODS AND RESULTS - Patients were eligible if they had an ED AHF diagnosis, had not yet received intravenous diuretics, had a systolic blood pressure > 90 mmHg, and were not on dialysis. Urine electrolytes and urine output were collected at 1, 2, 4, and 6 h after diuretic administration. Worsening HF was defined as clinically persistent or WHF requiring escalation of diuretics or administration of intravenous vasoactives after the ED stay. Of the 61 patients who qualified in this pilot study, there were 10 (16.3%) patients who fulfilled our definition of WHF. At 1 h after diuretic administration, patients who developed WHF were more likely to have low urinary sodium (9.5 vs. 43.0 mmol; P < 0.001) and decreased urine sodium concentration (48 vs. 80 mmol/L; P = 0.004) than patients without WHF. All patients with WHF had a total urine sodium of <35.4 mmol at 1 h (100% sensitivity and 60% specificity).
CONCLUSIONS - One hour after diuretic administration, a urine sodium excretion of <35.4 mmol was highly suggestive of the development of WHF. These relationships require further testing to determine if early intervention with alternative agents can prevent WHF.
© 2018 The Authors. ESC Heart Failure published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of the European Society of Cardiology.
OBJECTIVE - A pilot study suggested that combination therapy with low-dose anti-thymocyte globulin (ATG) and pegylated granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (GCSF) preserves C-peptide in established type 1 diabetes (T1D) (duration 4 months to 2 years). We hypothesized that ) low-dose ATG/GCSF or ) low-dose ATG alone would slow the decline of β-cell function in patients with new-onset T1D (duration <100 days).
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS - A three-arm, randomized, double-masked, placebo-controlled trial was performed by the Type 1 Diabetes TrialNet Study Group in 89 subjects: 29 subjects randomized to ATG (2.5 mg/kg intravenously) followed by pegylated GCSF (6 mg subcutaneously every 2 weeks for 6 doses), 29 to ATG alone (2.5 mg/kg), and 31 to placebo. The primary end point was mean area under the curve (AUC) C-peptide during a 2-h mixed-meal tolerance test 1 year after initiation of therapy. Significance was defined as one-sided value < 0.025.
RESULTS - The 1-year mean AUC C-peptide was significantly higher in subjects treated with ATG (0.646 nmol/L) versus placebo (0.406 nmol/L) ( = 0.0003) but not in those treated with ATG/GCSF (0.528 nmol/L) versus placebo ( = 0.031). HbA was significantly reduced at 1 year in subjects treated with ATG and ATG/GCSF, = 0.002 and 0.011, respectively.
CONCLUSIONS - Low-dose ATG slowed decline of C-peptide and reduced HbA in new-onset T1D. Addition of GCSF did not enhance C-peptide preservation afforded by low-dose ATG. Future studies should be considered to determine whether low-dose ATG alone or in combination with other agents may prevent or delay the onset of the disease.
© 2018 by the American Diabetes Association.
Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is a deadly disease with no cure. Alternate conversion of angiotensin II (AngII) to angiotensin-(1-7) (Ang-(1-7)) by angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) resulting in Mas receptor (Mas1) activation improves rodent models of PAH. Effects of recombinant human (rh) ACE2 in human PAH are unknown. Our objective was to determine the effects of rhACE2 in PAH.We defined the molecular effects of Mas1 activation using porcine pulmonary arteries, measured AngII/Ang-(1-7) levels in human PAH and conducted a phase IIa, open-label pilot study of a single infusion of rhACE2 (GSK2586881, 0.2 or 0.4 mg·kg intravenously).Superoxide dismutase 2 (SOD2) and inflammatory gene expression were identified as markers of Mas1 activation. After confirming reduced plasma ACE2 activity in human PAH, five patients were enrolled in the trial. GSK2586881 was well tolerated with significant improvement in cardiac output and pulmonary vascular resistance. GSK2586881 infusion was associated with reduced plasma markers of inflammation within 2-4 h and increased SOD2 plasma protein at 2 weeks.PAH is characterised by reduced ACE2 activity. Augmentation of ACE2 in a pilot study was well tolerated, associated with improved pulmonary haemodynamics and reduced markers of oxidant and inflammatory mediators. Targeting this pathway may be beneficial in human PAH.
Copyright ©ERS 2018.
CKD is steadily increasing along with obesity worldwide. Furthermore, obesity is a proinflammatory risk factor for progression of CKD and cardiovascular disease. We tested the hypothesis that implementation of caloric restriction and aerobic exercise is feasible and can improve the proinflammatory metabolic milieu in patients with moderate to severe CKD through a pilot, randomized, 2×2 factorial design trial. Of 122 participants consented, 111 were randomized to receive caloric restriction and aerobic exercise, caloric restriction alone, aerobic exercise alone, or usual care. Of those randomized, 42% were women, 25% were diabetic, and 91% were hypertensive; 104 started intervention, and 92 completed the 4-month study. Primary outcomes were a change from baseline in absolute fat mass, body weight, plasma F-isoprostane concentrations, and peak oxygen uptake (VO). Compared with usual care, the combined intervention led to statistically significant decreases in body weight and body fat percentage. Caloric restriction alone also led to significant decreases in these measures, but aerobic exercise alone did not. The combined intervention and each independent intervention also led to significant decreases in F-isoprostane and IL-6 concentrations. No intervention produced significant changes in VO, kidney function, or urine albumin-to-creatinine ratio. In conclusion, 4-month dietary calorie restriction and aerobic exercise had significant, albeit clinically modest, benefits on body weight, fat mass, and markers of oxidative stress and inflammatory response in patients with moderate to severe CKD. These results suggest healthy lifestyle interventions as a nonpharmacologic strategy to improve markers of metabolic health in these patients.
Copyright © 2018 by the American Society of Nephrology.
BACKGROUND - Magnetic compression anastomosis (magnamosis) uses a pair of self-centering magnetic Harrison Rings to create an intestinal anastomosis without sutures or staples. We report the first-in-human case series using this unique device.
STUDY DESIGN - We conducted a prospective, single-center, first-in-human pilot trial to evaluate the feasibility and safety of creating an intestinal anastomosis using the Magnamosis device. Adult patients requiring any intestinal anastomosis to restore bowel continuity were eligible for inclusion. For each procedure, 1 Harrison Ring was placed in the lumen of each intestinal segment. The rings were brought together and mated, and left to form a side to side, functional end to end anastomosis. Device movement was monitored with serial x-rays until it was passed in the stool. Patients were monitored for adverse effects with routine clinic appointments, as well as questionnaires.
RESULTS - Five patients have undergone small bowel anastomosis with the Magnamosis device. All 5 patients had severe systemic disease and underwent complex open urinary reconstruction procedures, with the device used to restore small bowel continuity after isolation of an ileal segment. All devices passed without obstruction or pain. No patients have had any complications related to their anastomosis, including anastomotic leaks, bleeding, or stricture at median follow-up of 13 months.
CONCLUSIONS - In this initial case series from the first-in-human trial of the Magnamosis device, the device was successfully placed and effectively formed a side to side, functional end to end small bowel anastomosis in all 5 patients. No patients have had any anastomotic complications at intermediate follow-up.
Copyright © 2017 American College of Surgeons. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
BACKGROUND - The challenging biological and mechanical environment of posterolateral fusion (PLF) requires a carrier that spans the transverse processes and resists the compressive forces of the posterior musculature. The less traumatic posterolateral approach enabled by minimally invasive surgical techniques has prompted investigations into alternative rhBMP-2 carriers that are injectable, settable, and compression-resistant. In this pilot study, we investigated injectable low-viscosity (LV) polymer/composite bone grafts as compression-resistant carriers for rhBMP-2 in a single-level rabbit PLF model.
METHODS - LV grafts were augmented with ceramic microparticles: (1) hydrolytically degradable bioactive glass (BG), or (2) cell-degradable 85% β-tricalcium phosphate/15% hydroxyapatite (CM). Material properties, such as pore size, viscosity, working time, and bulk modulus upon curing, were measured for each LV polymer/ceramic material. An in vivo model of posterolateral fusion in a rabbit was used to assess the grafts' capability to encourage spinal fusion.
RESULTS - These materials maintained a working time between 9.6 and 10.3 min, with a final bulk modulus between 1.2 and 3.1 MPa. The LV polymer/composite bone grafts released 55% of their rhBMP-2 over a 14-day period. As assessed by manual palpation in vivo, fusion was achieved in all (n = 3) animals treated with LV/BG or LV/CM carriers incorporating 430 μg rhBMP-2/ml. Images of μCT and histological sections revealed evidence of bone fusion near the transverse processes.
CONCLUSION - This study highlights the potential of LV grafts as injectable and compression-resistant rhBMP-2 carriers for posterolateral spinal fusion.
As observed during the 2013-2016 Ebola virus disease epidemic, containment of filovirus outbreaks is challenging and made more difficult by the lack of approved vaccine or therapeutic options. Marburg and Ravn viruses are highly virulent and cause severe and frequently lethal disease in humans. Monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) are a platform technology in wide use for autoimmune and oncology indications. Previously, we described human mAbs that can protect mice from lethal challenge with Marburg virus. We demonstrate that one of these mAbs, MR191-N, can confer a survival benefit of up to 100% to Marburg or Ravn virus-infected rhesus macaques when treatment is initiated up to 5 days post-inoculation. These findings extend the small but growing body of evidence that mAbs can impart therapeutic benefit during advanced stages of disease with highly virulent viruses and could be useful in epidemic settings.
Copyright © 2017, American Association for the Advancement of Science.
The construction of tissue microarrays (TMAs) with cores from a large number of paraffin-embedded tissues (donors) into a single paraffin block (recipient) is an effective method of analyzing samples from many patient specimens simultaneously. For the TMA to be successful, the cores within it must capture the correct histologic areas from the donor blocks (technical accuracy) and maintain concordance with the tissue of origin (analytical accuracy). This can be particularly challenging for tissues with small histological features such as small islands of carcinoma in situ (CIS), thin layers of normal urothelial lining of the bladder, or cancers that exhibit intratumor heterogeneity. In an effort to create a comprehensive TMA of a bladder cancer patient cohort that accurately represents the tumor heterogeneity and captures the small features of normal and CIS, we determined how core size (0.6 vs 1.0 mm) impacted the technical and analytical accuracy of the TMA. The larger 1.0 mm core exhibited better technical accuracy for all tissue types at 80.9% (normal), 94.2% (tumor), and 71.4% (CIS) compared with 58.6%, 85.9%, and 63.8% for 0.6 mm cores. Although the 1.0 mm core provided better tissue capture, increasing the number of replicates from two to three allowed with the 0.6 mm core compensated for this reduced technical accuracy. However, quantitative image analysis of proliferation using both Ki67+ immunofluorescence counts and manual mitotic counts demonstrated that the 1.0 mm core size also exhibited significantly greater analytical accuracy (P=0.004 and 0.035, respectively, r=0.979 and 0.669, respectively). Ultimately, our findings demonstrate that capturing two or more 1.0 mm cores for TMA construction provides superior technical and analytical accuracy over the smaller 0.6 mm cores, especially for tissues harboring small histological features or substantial heterogeneity.
BACKGROUND - Oxidative stress is highly prevalent in patients with end-stage renal disease and is linked to excess cardiovascular risk. Identifying therapies that reduce oxidative stress has the potential to improve cardiovascular outcomes in patients undergoing maintenance dialysis.
STUDY DESIGN - Placebo-controlled, 3-arm, double-blind, randomized, clinical trial.
SETTING & PARTICIPANTS - 65 patients undergoing thrice-weekly maintenance hemodialysis.
INTERVENTION - Patients were randomly assigned in a 1:1:1 ratio to receive once-daily coenzyme Q (CoQ; 600 or 1,200mg) or matching placebo for 4 months.
OUTCOMES - The primary outcome was plasma oxidative stress, defined as plasma concentration of F-isoprotanes. Secondary outcomes included levels of plasma isofurans, levels of cardiac biomarkers, predialysis blood pressure, and safety/tolerability.
MEASUREMENTS - F-isoprostanes and isofurans were measured as plasma markers of oxidative stress, and N-terminal pro-brain natriuretic peptide and troponin T were measured as cardiac biomarkers at baseline and 1, 2, and 4 months.
RESULTS - Of 80 randomly assigned patients, 15 were excluded due to not completing at least 1 postbaseline study visit and 65 were included in the primary intention-to-treat analysis. No treatment-related major adverse events occurred. Daily treatment with 1,200mg, but not 600mg, of CoQ significantly reduced plasma F-isoprostanes concentrations at 4 months compared to placebo (adjusted mean changes of -10.7 [95% CI, -7.1 to -14.3] pg/mL [P<0.001] and -8.3 [95% CI, -5.5 to -11.0] pg/mL [P=0.1], respectively). There were no significant effects of CoQ treatment on levels of plasma isofurans, cardiac biomarkers, or predialysis blood pressures.
LIMITATIONS - Study not powered to detect small treatment effects; difference in baseline characteristics among randomized groups.
CONCLUSIONS - In patients undergoing maintenance hemodialysis, daily supplementation with 1,200mg of CoQ is safe and results in a reduction in plasma concentrations of F-isoprostanes, a marker of oxidative stress. Future studies are needed to determine whether CoQ supplementation improves clinical outcomes for patients undergoing maintenance hemodialysis.
Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Inc.
OBJECTIVES - The aim of the study was to assess the extent to which misoprostol alters mucosal or systemic immune responses following either buccal or vaginal administration.
METHODS - This was a prospective, crossover pilot study of 15 healthy, reproductive-age women. Women first received 800 μg misoprostol either via buccal or vaginal administration and were crossed over 1 month later to receive the drug via the other route. Cervicovaginal lavage samples, cervical Cytobrush samples, cervicovaginal swabs, urine and blood were obtained immediately prior to drug administration and the following day. Parameters assessed included urine and cervicovaginal misoprostol levels, whole blood cytokine responses (by ELISA) to immune stimulation with lipopolysaccharide, peripheral blood and cervical lymphocyte phenotyping by flow cytometry, cervicovaginal antimicrobial peptide measurement by ELISA and vaginal microbial ecology assessment by 16S rRNA sequencing.
RESULTS - Neither buccal nor vaginal misoprostol significantly altered local or systemic immune and microbiological parameters.
CONCLUSION - In this pilot study, we did not observe significant alteration of mucosal or systemic immunology or vaginal microbial ecology 1 day after drug administration following either the buccal or vaginal route.