Life Sciences

Cross-Sectional Comparison of the Characteristics of Respiratory Allergy in Immigrants and Italian Children

L.C. , L.Grutta, , P.G. , P.G. , F.A. , R.E. , D.F. , C.G. , C.M. , L.M. , M.F. , M.G. , R.E. , T.M. , V.E.


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Background: Immigrants represent a good epidemiological model to evaluate the relative influence of environmental and inherited factors on the development of allergy. Several studies on allergy in adults have been published, but few data in children are available. We aimed to investigate the differences, between Italian and immigrant children, in clinical characteristics of respiratory allergy. Methods: This was a multicentre cross-sectional study involving children born in Italy from Italian parents and children born either in Italy or abroad from immigrants. Children referred firstly for allergic respiratory disease (rhinitis/asthma), with an ascertained clinical diagnosis and IgE sensitization to inhalants, were included. Demographic features, comorbidities, severity of disease, and sensitization profile were compared between Italians and immigrants, separating also those born in Italy from immigrant parents and those born abroad. Results: One hundred and sixty-five immigrant allergic children were enrolled (100 male, mean age 8.3 yr), 128 of whose had both parents immigrated. Italian children were 237 (156 male, mean age 8.4 yr). The Italian and immigrant children were similar, apart from pet's ownership and family size. There was no difference in the severity of rhinitis/asthma between the groups, whereas significant differences were found in the pattern of sensitization: immigrant children were more frequently sensitized to house dust mites (73.3% vs. 51%, respectively; p = 0.002) and less to grass (41.8% vs. 57.8%; p = 0.002); this was retained also in monosensitized children. Immigrant children born in Italy (n = 105) had a lower prevalence of rhinitis vs. Italians (68.3% vs. 87.6%, respectively, p = 0.003) and of sensitization to grass (28.3% vs. 49.5%, respectively, p = 0.008). No difference was found among macro-regions of origin and demographic or clinical features. Conclusions: Immigrant children born either in Italy or abroad did not show significant differences in the clinical pattern of the respiratory allergic disease when compared to children born from Italian parents. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons A/S

Human Epididymis Protein 4 (HE4) in Benign and Malignant Diseases

S.Petra , N.Dorothea , M.Doris , L.Miriam , H.Linda , K.Angela , F.Sophie , H.Karin , K.Katja , B.Alexander


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Background: Human epididymis protein 4 (HE4) is described as a useful new biomarker in ovarian cancer. As HE4 is neither tumor nor organ specific, we intensively investigated the occurrence of this protein in female and male patients with various benign and malignant diseases in order to avoid misinterpretation and to identify potential additional clinical relevance. Methods: We retrospectively investigated HE4 (ARCHITECT (R), Abbott Diagnostics, US) in the sera of 205 healthy individuals, 654 patients with benign disorders and 720 patients with cancer before initial treatment. Results: The lowest concentrations of HE4 were observed in healthy men (median 26.2 pmol/L) followed by healthy women (median 40.4 pmol/L). In benign diseases, highest HE4 concentrations were seen in both women and men with renal failure (women, median 1041 pmol/L; men, median 1368 pmol/L). In women, the highest HE4 levels in malignant diseases were observed in ovarian cancer (median 242 pmol/l), whereas the highest HE4 concentrations in men occurred in lung cancer (median 89.2 pmol/L). The area under the curve (AUC) of HE4 in women was highest in ovarian cancer and borderline tumors as compared to benign gynecological disorders (88.9%), with a sensitivity of 67.4% at 95% specificity. Also, significantly elevated concentrations of HE4 with reference to the respective group of benign diseases were observed in uterus corpus and breast cancer as well as in lung cancer for men and women. Conclusions: HE4 has the highest relevance in ovarian cancer but can be elevated in a variety of benign and malignant diseases.

Fish biomarkers as a powerful tool for investigative monitoring

W.Sanchez , J.Porcher , A.Bado-Nilles


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Widely used in research activities, biomarkers are effect-based monitoring tools that allow assessing exposure of aquatic organisms and associated effects. However, they are weakly used in regulatory environmental monitoring programmes. The present manuscript highlights the potential of fish biomarkers for control monitoring or environmental investigation. Two cases studies based on angler observations were presented and discussed. The first one reports adverse effects of an industrial effluent in wild gudgeons and the second one describes the decrease of grayling catches. In this context, fish biomarkers allow to determine mechanisms of action of chemicals able to induce observed adverse effects. Complementary works are needed to determine relationship between biochemical responses and individual or populational effects and to define biomarkers as a predictive signal. Resume : Developpes et largement utilises dans les programmes de recherche, les biomarqueurs sont des outils ecotoxicologiques permettant d'evaluer l'exposition des organismes aquatiques et les effets associes. Ils sont toutefois peu utilises pour la surveillance reglementaire de la qualite des milieux aquatiques. Cet article met en lumiere les potentialites des biomarqueurs dans le cadre du controle d'enquete ou de l'investigation environnementale. Deux etudes de cas initiees suite a des observations de pecheurs et portant respectivement sur les effets d'un rejet industriel et sur la diminution des captures de poissons sont analysees. Dans ce contexte, les biomarqueurs mesures chez le poisson permettent de determiner les mecanismes d'action des polluants susceptibles d'etre a l'origine des effets observes. Des travaux complementaires restent necessaires pour etablir de maniere formelle des relations entre les effets precoces et les effets individuels et populationnels, permettant ainsi d'utiliser les biomarqueurs comme des signaux d'alerte.

Colonic transit time is a driven force of the gut microbiota composition and metabolism: in vitro evidence

N.Gaci , W.Tottey , M.Alric , J.Francois , D.Feria , B.Laillet , E.Pujos-Guillot , J.Martin , J.Sebedio , B.Sion , J.Jarrige


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Background/Aims: Human gut microbiota harbors numerous metabolic properties essential for the host's health. Increased intestinal transit time affects a part of the population and is notably observed with human aging, which also corresponds to modifications of the gut microbiota. Thus we tested the metabolic and compositional changes of a human gut microbiota induced by an increased transit time simulated in vitro. Methods: The in vitro system, Environmental Control System for Intestinal Microbiota, was used to simulate the environmental conditions of 3 different anatomical parts of the human colon in a continuous process. The retention times of the chemostat conditions were established to correspond to a typical transit time of 48 hours next increased to 96 hours. The bacterial communities, short chain fatty acids and metabolite fingerprints were determined. Results: Increase of transit time resulted in a decrease of biomass and of diversity in the more distal compartments. Short chain fatty acid analyses and metabolite fingerprinting revealed increased activity corresponding to carbohydrate fermentation in the proximal compartments while protein fermentations were increased in the lower parts. Conclusions: This study provides the evidence that the increase of transit time, independently of other factors, affects the composition and metabolism of the gut microbiota. The transit time is one of the factors that explain some of the modifications seen in the gut microbiota of the elderly, as well as patients with slow transit time.

Interaction Between Dietary and Lifestyle Risk Factors and N-Acetyltransferase Polymorphisms in B-Cell Lymphoma Etiology

C.P , S.S , E.MG , S.A , A.E , Z.M , S.G , G.A , M.M , C.M


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Background: Gene-environment interactions are suggested to play a role in lymphomagenesis.\ud Methods: We tested the interaction between the NAT1/NAT2 phenotype, as inferred by the respective genotypes,\ud and exposure to dietary and lifestyle risk factors, in 199 incident lymphoma cases and 188 population controls. We\ud used unconditional logistic regression to calculate the odds ratio (OR) and its 95% confidence interval for lymphoma\ud (all subtypes combined) and B cell lymphoma, associated to the rapid NAT1 phenotype and to the intermediate and\ud slow NAT2 phenotype, and to the estimated dietary intake of heterocyclic amines and folate, current smoking, coffee,\ud and use of permanent hair dyes, as well as the respective interaction terms. We adjusted the ORs by age, gender, and\ud education, and we used the likelihood ratio test to test the interaction between the NAT1, NAT2 phenotype and the\ud dietary and lifestyle variables.\ud Results: We observed an increase in risk of lymphoma (all subtypes combined) and B-cell lymphoma in particular\ud associated with the estimated above median dietary intake of heterocyclic amines (OR = 4.2, 95%CI 1.2 – 14.8) and\ud folate (OR = 4.1, 95%CI 0.7 – 22.4) among subjects with the NAT1 rapid acetylator phenotype, but not independent on\ud the NAT1 phenotype. The test for interaction was significant for heterocyclic amines, but not for folate (p for interaction\ud = 0.026 and 0.076 respectively). Ever use of permanent hair dyes was associated with an elevated risk independent on\ud the NAT1, NAT2 phenotypes; risk decreased to null among intermediate and slow NAT1 acetylators (p for interaction =\ud 0.010).\ud Conclusions: Our results suggest that NAT1, NAT2 polymorphisms interact with dietary and lifestyle exposures in\ud modulating risk of lymphoma and particularly B-cell lymphoma

Risques de pertes de nitrate par lixiviation a court et moyen terme dans les rotations cerealieres incluant du pois ou du colza

D.Beillouin , A.Schneider , B.Carrouee , F.Flenet , L.Champolivier , J.Cohan , M.Jeuffroy


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During the 90s and 2000s, the nitrate losses through leaching during the winter period following a givencrop have been widely studied in France and abroad. This study quantifies soil mineral nitrogencontents and nitrate leaching during the second autumn-winter period after harvest of a pea, a rapeseedor a wheat. Nitrate leaching during successive years for cereal-based sequences including pea orrapeseed has also been studied from simulations based on measurements of soil nitrogen content atthe beginning of winter in various crop sequences. During the autumn following a pea or an rapeseed, nitrate leaching is increased, compared to a wheat crop. On the opposite, during the autumn following apea-wheat sequence or an rapeseed-wheat sequence, nitrate leaching is reduced, compared to awheat-wheat sequence, due to a higher use efficiency of the available soil inorganic N by the 2nd wheatcrop. Thanks to this inter-annual compensation, the diversification of cereal-based crop sequences bythe introduction of a pea or a rapeseed does not increase the risk of nitrate leaching compared tocereal-based crop sequences. In addition, a pea crop allows to decrease N losses linked to the use offertilizers , and thus Nlosses linked to ammonium volatilization and its partial redeposition, and greenhouse gas emissionssuch as nitrogen protoxide. Resume : Les pertes de nitrate par lixiviation sur la periode hivernale qui suit la recolte dune culture ont etelargement etudiees dans les annees 1990 et 2000 dans differents dispositifs en France et a letranger. Cette etude quantifie les stocks dazote mineral du sol et la lixiviation du nitrate lors du deuxiemeautomne-hiver apres la recolte dune culture de pois, de colza, ou de ble. La lixiviation pluri-annuellepour des successions cerealieres comprenant du pois ou du colza a egalement ete analysee a partir desimulations basees sur des mesures de stock dazote en entree hiver. Pendant lautomne qui suit unpois ou un colza, la lixiviation est augmentee, par rapport a un ble. Au contraire, pendant lautomne quisuit un ble de pois ou un ble de colza, la lixiviation de nitrate est reduite, par rapport a un ble de ble,grace a une meilleure utilisation de lazote disponible par le second ble. Grace a cette compensationinter-annuelle, la diversification des rotations cerealieres, par lintroduction de pois ou de colza,naugmente pas les risques de lixiviation par rapport a des successions a base de cereales. En outre, laculture de pois reduit les pertes ponctuelles dazote liees a lusage dengrais , celles liees a la volatilisation de composesazotes et a leur redeposition partielle, et les emissions de gaz a effet de serre comme le protoxydedazote, conduisant a un bilan azote globalement positif pour les successions integrant cettelegumineuse.

Oral Vinorelbine and Cisplatin With Concomitant Radiotherapy in Stage III Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer (NSCLC): a Feasibility Study

S.Michael , F.Michael , B.Gabriele , F.Rainer , H.Rudolf , K.Philip , S.Sabine , A.Delphine , F.Alberto


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Background: Concurrent chemoradiotherapy has improved survival in inoperable stage III non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). This phase I trial was performed in order to establish a dose recommendation for oral vinorelbine in combination with cisplatin and simultaneous radiotherapy. Patients and Methods: Previously untreated patients with stage IIIB NSCLC received concurrent chemoradiotherapy with 66 Gy and 2 cycles of cisplatin and oral vinorelbine which was administered at 3 different levels (40, 50 and 60 mg/m(2)). This was to be followed by 2 cycles of cisplatin/vinorelbine oral consolidation chemotherapy. The study goal was to determine the maximal recommended dose of oral vinorelbine during concurrent treatment. Results: 11 stage IIIB patients were entered into the study. The median radiotherapy dose was 66 Gy. Grade 3-4 toxicity included neutropenia, esophagitis, gastritis and febrile neutropenia. The dose-limiting toxicity for concurrent chemoradiotherapy was esophagitis. 9 patients received consolidation chemotherapy, with neutropenia and anemia/thrombocytopenia grade 3 being the only toxicities. The overall response was 73%. Conclusion: Oral vinorelbine 50 mg/m(2) (days 1, 8, 15 over 4 weeks) in combination with cisplatin 20 mg/m2 (days 1-4) is the recommended dose in combination with radiotherapy (66 Gy) and will be used for concurrent chemoradiotherapy in a forthcoming phase III trial testing the efficacy of consolidation chemotherapy in patients not progressing after chemoradiotherapy.
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