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Geographical distribution of cystic fibrosis; The past 70 years of data analyzis
Seyed Bashir Mirtajani, Poopak Farnia, Maryam Hassanzad, Jalaledin Ghanavi, Parissa Farnia, Ali Akbar Velayati
October-December 2017, 1(2):105-112
Cystic fibrosis (CF) has been generally well defined throughout the world although its prevalence is very difficult to ascertain for a number of reasons, including the fact that the medical/scientific literature and patient registries vary in quality in different countries. In the present review literature (1938–2017), we found out the higher frequency of registered CF patients in the European Union. This could be due to strong clinical awareness and greater health facilities. In contrast, we found a very irregular report from Asian and African countries. In these countries, the national CF registration system is mostly lacking or it is individualized-based research. In this situation, the estimation of various risk factors such as ethnicity and/or races is remained to be resolved. Overall, this review outlines the urgent need for revitalization of national and global CF registration, worldwide.
  22,553 1,982 5
The relationship between nutrition and infectious diseases: A review
Sedigheh Farhadi, Roman S Ovchinnikov
July-September 2018, 2(3):168-172
Nutrition and infectious diseases are related to each other in some aspects. First, nutrition affects the development of human body immune system. Moreover, nutrition can influence emerge of infectious diseases (e.g., gastrointestinal infections), food poisoning, intestinal diseases, and systemic infectious diseases. In this review, the mentioned aspects of the relationship between nutrition and infections are discussed. Furthermore, the relationship between malnutrition and infectious diseases, nutrition in patients with severe combined immunodeficiency and relationship between overeating and infection are reviewed. Overall, some factors can weaken the body's ability to fight infection and cause malnutrition. The factors include anorexia, traditional behaviors, reduction of intestinal absorption, metabolic damage, disorder metabolism of lipids and carbohydrates, reduction of vitamins, iron, zinc, and copper. In the case of the relationship between malnutrition and infection, a large number of studies have illustrated a bidirectional interaction of malnutrition and infection. In this aspect, to treat serious acute malnutrition and limit the rate of death, some preventive studies applied antibiotics, probiotic bacteria, and prebiotic foods. In the future, studies may be conducted on intestinal or systematic immunomodulation.
  17,935 1,447 3
Exploring potential of phage therapy for tuberculosis using model organism
Vijay Singh Gondil, Sanjay Chhibber
January-March 2018, 2(1):9-15
Antibiotics, one of the miracle discoveries of the 20th century after world war revolutionized the treatment and prophylaxis of infectious diseases. Antibiotics led to an increase in the quality of health-care system but with the emergence of antibiotic-resistant bacterial strains compromised their very potential. The WHO calls bacterial resistance as one of the major threats to global health, food security, and development today. Antibiotic resistance poses a need of alternative therapy to conventional antibiotics. As proved in preantibiotic era phage therapy is effective against a number of successful pathogens and can be used as an alternative strategy to restrain stern infections such as antibiotic resistance tuberculosis (TB). In the present paper, effectiveness of phage therapy and use of model organisms for developing treatment strategy for antibiotic-resistant TB is discussed so as to explore new possibilities in battle against antibiotic resistance.
  6,251 885 5
Probiotics: The marvelous factor and health benefits
S Vijayaram, S Kannan
January-March 2018, 2(1):1-8
The aim of this study is well stated to address in recent advances on probiotics in the past 50 years. Probiotics are the living cell organisms. It is a presence in human and animal gut. The probiotic organisms are natural antibiotics in the human-animal gut. This reviews the main role mechanisms of action in probiotics such as probiotics are antibiotics, probiotics in antibacterial activity, probiotic action in fish gut bacteria, dietary supplements of probiotics, gastrointestinal microbiota of fishes, microbial community of the gastrointestinal tract of fish, bioactive compounds from probiotic bacteria, probiotic uses in cancer therapeutic applications, and applications of probiotics. The most common probiotics are used in many ways such as boosting the immune system, inhibition of pathogenic organism, prevention of cancer, reduction of inflammatory bowel disease, reducing cholesterol level, and synthesis of Vitamin A. Nowadays, food products are mainly involved in chemical preservatives. These preservative agents are causing the disease to affect the human health. The probiotic food products are used to the development of human-animal health.
  4,556 757 3
Establishing reference ranges and normal values for coagulation screening in healthy Indian male volunteers enrolled for a longitudinal study
Rehan Ahmed, Prosenjit Ganguli, Natwar Singh, Surinderpal Singh, Umesh Das Gupta, Yogesh K Jaiswal, Zahid Asharaf, Prasanna Reddy, Velu Nair
January-March 2019, 3(1):22-29
Background: The study was designed for establishing reference ranges and normal values for coagulation screening in healthy Indian male volunteers. At present, there are no standard parameters established for coagulation screening assays of Indian population. The parameters used as a reference in the coagulation assays are of Western origin. We know that ethnicity of the western population is different from the Indian population which may result in a different set of reference ranges of the coagulation assay. It is necessary to determine the mean normal values for the coagulation assay, namely prothrombin time (PT), activated partial thromboplastin time (APTT), thrombin time (TT), and fibrinogen in an Indian population. The aim of the study was to establish the reference ranges of coagulation assays for all future experiments on the cohort. Methods: Six hundred healthy male volunteers were sampled and underwent coagulation testing at a seven hundred-bedded hospital at Jammu (Jammu). Fresh normal pool plasma (FNPP) was prepared concurrently and investigated (n = 50 volunteers). In the study population, the arithmetic means of the coagulation assay were as follows: PT: 13.00 s, APTT: 34 s, TT: 17.3 s, and fibrinogen: 298 mg/dl (19 s), and in the FNPP, it was 12.8 s, 33.2 s, 17 s, and 298 mg/dl (19 s), respectively. Results: The reference range of coagulation screening in our study was established as the following values: PT: 10.7–15.3 s, APTT: 26.8–41.2 s, TT: 12.8–21.7 s, and fibrinogen: 223–372 mg/dl. This study has set a reference range of normal values for coagulation assay screening in longitudinal studies where these tests were repeated on the same set of individuals at six-month interval for the subsequent 3 years. Conclusion: We see no effect of age on Coagulation cascade in our study. Overall mean values resembled with various age groups in coagulation cascade. These parameters of Coagulation cascade set a standard for high altitude studies where these tests are in normal procedure.
  5,013 299 -
Inhalational anesthetics agents: The pharmacokinetic, pharmacodynamics, and their effects on human body
Negin Kassiri, Seyed Hossein Ardehali, Farzad Rashidi, Seyed MohammadReza Hashemian
July-September 2018, 2(3):173-177
In this review article, inhalational anesthetics agents and their pharmacokinetic, pharmacodynamics and effects on the central nervous, cardiovascular, and respiratory systems are discussed. There is a wide spectrum of inhalational anesthetic agents with different characteristics. As some examples, in this study, recovery times of sevoflurane and halothane are reviewed. Overall, gas drugs have extensive usage in Intensive Care Unit. For example, a combination of oxygen and helium may be utilized in patients with obstructive airway disorders, endotracheal tubes, acute lung damage, diphtheria, respiratory distress syndrome, asthma, bronchiolitis, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Xenon would be effective in reducing memories after traumatic events.
  4,645 591 -
Useful approaches for reducing aflatoxin M1 content in milk and dairy products
Fatemeh Naeimipour, Jafar Aghajani, Saba Amiri Kojuri, Saman Ayoubi
April-June 2018, 2(2):94-99
The quality and safety of food are of major importance. Using contaminated animals' milk and meat may result in human disease. Among microorganisms, fungal toxins, especially aflatoxin B-1 (AFB1), are of special importance. Aflatoxin M-1 (AFM-1) is a metabolite that is produced by conversion and hydroxylation of AFB-1. Both toxins can cause acute and chronic mycotoxicosis mainly through ingestion of contaminated milk. Hence, it is critical to control and decrease these microorganisms. Despite cost-effective efforts, preventing foods contamination due to aflatoxins (AFs) is not only an expensive but also a difficult task. The best agricultural monitoring during preharvest and postharvest stages cannot eliminate the AFs, especially AFM-1 from milk and dairy products because of the high resistance of these toxins. There have been numerous studies investigating the methods of AF detoxification or reduction from infected milk. By focusing on advantages and disadvantages of preventative procedures using probiotics, antibodies, chemisorbents and even additives, one can choose one or several procedures to eliminate or reduce AFM-1 in milk and its byproducts efficiently.
  4,565 588 1
Thyroid dysfunction in early pregnancy and spontaneous abortion
Preeti Gahlawat, Aditi Singh, Smiti Nanda, Simmi Kharb
July-September 2017, 1(1):81-84
Background: Pregnancy is associated with significant but reversible changes in thyroid function. Abnormal thyroid hormone levels could give rise to increased malplacentation increase to malplacentation that underlies the association between maternal thyroid dysfunction and adverse obstetric outcomes such as fetal brain damage, preterm births, and fetal death. Aim: The present study was planned to predict the risk of abortion in pregnancy by studying the relation between thyroid profile and rate of abortion. Methods: This prospective observational study was carried out in 100 pregnant women with a singleton pregnancy of 6–12 weeks of gestation in the Department of Biochemistry in collaboration with the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Pt. B.D. Sharma, PGIMS, Rohtak. The patients were divided into three groups, namely, Group 1 (n = 30, control group) included normal pregnant women with no history of abortion; Group 2 (n = 35) included pregnant females with previous history of abortion; and Group 3 (n = 35) comprised pregnant women coming with chief complaint of bleeding per vaginum. A volume of 5 mL blood sample was taken and serum was separated using centrifugation. Triiodothyronine (T3), thyroxine (T4), and thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) levels were estimated by chemiluminiscence. Results: T3, T4 and levels were comparable in all the three groups and the difference was not statistically significant. TSH levels were found to be negatively correlated with T3 and T4 values in the three groups. Only, 13% of the patients had spontaneous abortion. Nearly 6.66% of the patients in Group 1, 11.42% in Group 2 and 19.99% of patients in Group 3 ended up in abortion. TSH was found to be strongly associated with abortion in all the three groups (P ≤ 0.001). TSH levels were significantly higher in the first trimester in women who had an abortion than pregnant women who had a successful continuation of pregnancy. Conclusions: TSH was strongly associated with abortion in the first trimester in all the three groups.
  4,463 347 1
Epidemiology of multi-drug-resistant tuberculosis in Northern India
Ankur Kumar, Amresh Kumar Singh, Vandana Upadhyay, Jayesh Pandey
April-June 2018, 2(2):112-121
India is the world's second most populous country, accounting for a quarter of the world's annual incidence of tuberculosis (TB). Every year around 2 million people develop TB in India and 300,000 die due to the TB. The emergence of drug-resistant-TB (DR-TB) has become a major public health concern in India. This situation is worsened by the appearance of multi-drug-resistant (MDR) strains of Mycobacterium tuberculosis. We sought to determine the characteristics and relative frequency of transmission of MDR-TB in North India and their association with the clinical and epidemiological characteristics of TB-patients and to mitigate the impeding drug-resistant TB epidemic in the country; it will help to established TB surveillance system effectively in the country. Diagnosis of MDR-TB prompts an appropriate treatment for patients with presumptive MDR-TB or rifampicin resistance in TB patients who have failed treatment with first-line drugs. If left undiagnosed or poorly treated, MDR-TB patients suffer for months to years before succumbing to the disease; hence, transmission of MDR-TB continues MDR-TB patients were found to be significantly higher in previously treated patients in comparison to newly diagnosed patients. The emerging drug susceptibility testing patterns and enlisting the help of an expert in DR-TB should be sought sooner rather than later through more than 100 established DR-TB centers across the country. To control the primary transmission of MDR-TB in Northern India, we recommend that improving the social support, living standards, and medical security of each patient should become a priority.
  4,257 530 1
Recent methods for diagnosis of nontuberculous mycobacteria infections: Relevance in clinical practice
Anand Kumar Maurya, Vijaya Lakshmi Nag, Surya Kant, Anuradha Sharma, Ravi Shekhar Gadepalli, Ram Awadh Singh Kushwaha
July-September 2017, 1(1):14-18
Nontuberculous mycobacteria (NTM) infections are ever more important in recent years for leading causes of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Clinical appearance of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (TB) complex and NTM is same, but the treatment regimen is always different. NTM is challenging for both diagnostic and therapeutic with reason that it mimic pathological, microbiological, immunological, and radiological findings of TB. Newer molecular diagnostic methods allow for a better identification of NTM infections in patients not responding to antitubercular treatment and falsely categorized as drug-resistant TB. This article will explore the recent methods for the diagnosis and identification of NTM infections in clinical practice. In the future, the molecular-based diagnosis will significantly reduce the turnaround time of the diagnosis and thereby improving patient outcome.
  3,618 676 1
Impact of geographical information system on public health sciences
Jafar Aghajani, Parissa Farnia, Ali Akbar Velayati
October-December 2017, 1(2):94-100
In this brief review, the geographic information systems (GISs) and its beneficial influence in the field of health were discussed and highlighted. Basically, GIS is a computerized system that can significantly add to assess and monitor the effects of environmental factors (namely, population, air pollution, location, climatic changes) on public health problems. The main benefits of GIS in health services are mapping and/or visualizing of disease distribution, which will ultimately improves our understanding of disease diversities and their spatial patterns. Therefore, GIS technology is capable of providing the intra- and inter-logical connection between health, social services, and natural environment.
  3,395 476 2
A study of the diurnal height changes among sample of adults aged 30 years and above in Ghana
Frederick Vuvor, Obed Harrison
October-December 2017, 1(2):113-119
Background: The diurnal variations in stature significantly affect the reliability of height data. Diurnal variation in stature affects the reliability of any data that involves height measurement without a correction factor at different times of the day. The aim of this study was to determine the diurnal height loss of adults aged ≥30 years in the Greater Accra Region of Ghana. Methods: A total of 90 individuals were randomly sampled. Weight and height measurements were taken twice a day between 5.30–7.30 am and 5–7 pm. The WHO Stepwise questionnaires were used to gather all information on subjects. Results: The maximum height loss between 7 am and 7 pm from the study was 2.7 cm whereas mean was 1.61 cm. There was a greater mean height loss in males (1.63 cm) than in females (1.59 cm), greater mean body mass index (BMI) difference between morning and evening BMI was observed for females (1.21 kg/m2) than in males (1.02 kg/m2). There was a significant association between height loss and occupational activities (P < 0.001). Conclusion: The height of the individuals significantly reduced from 7 am to 7 pm and increased from 7 pm to 7 am. The major factor that contributes to diurnal height variations is the level of occupational activity performed in a day. No significant relationships were established between age, sex, total caloric intake, and diurnal height loss.
  3,579 282 -
Outdoor air pollution affects tuberculosis development based on geographical information system modeling
Esmaeil Rajaei, Maryam Hadadi, Majid Madadi, Jafar Aghajani, Mohanad Mohsin Ahmad, Poopak Farnia, Jalaledin Ghanavi, Parissa Farnia, Ali Akbar Velayati
January-March 2018, 2(1):39-45
Background : Daily intake of air is 30 Ib as compared with 2-Ib of food and 4½ of water. Thereby, breathing-contaminated air is as harmful as drinking or eating contaminated water or food, respectively. Recent research has highlighted the extent of outdoor air pollution in large cities and warranted high-quality studies to clarify the magnitude of the problem. Here, we evaluated the possible association between tuberculosis (TB) development and exposure to outdoor air pollution in a metropolitan city of Tehran. Methods: Extraction and analysis of relevant data. Investigation performed on TB patients (n = 1167) that were residing in Tehran for the past 10 years. The average concentration of sulfur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen dioxide, carbon monoxide (CO), and particles with an aerodynamic diameter of ≤ 2.5μm (PM2.5) and ≤ 10.0 (PM10) was measured from Tehran Air Quality Control Corporation (TAQCC). Patient and ecological informations were analyzed using geographical information system. Results: Based on TAQCC, Tehran had an average of 180–250 polluted days per year for the last 10 years. The high incidence of pulmonary TB (18 to 31/100,000) was detected in populations which were exposed to high concentration of CO (2.7 to 5.2 parts per million, 95% confidence interval [CI]; 1.10 to 1.90) and PM2.5(35 to 42μg/m3; 95% CI 1.03 to 1.80). The level of SO2,NO, and PM10was also high but not significantly related to TB (P > 0.05). Conclusion: The long-term exposure to PM2.5 and CO was positively associated with TB development.
  3,120 356 -
Bioinformatics tools for genomic and evolutionary analysis of infectious agents
Vivek Dhar Dwivedi, Shiv Bharadwaj, Partha Sarathi Mohanty, Umesh Datta Gupta
July-September 2018, 2(3):163-167
Genome sequence analysis of infectious agents (IAs) reveals many secrets about their life processes and evolutionary history. Increasing the huge amount of genomic sequence data of various IAs in different biological sequence databases, which are being produced through different sequencing projects, is continuously motivating the genome researchers to unlock the mysteries related to the life of IAs. Furthermore, that information may be helpful for treating the serious illness problem caused by IAs. However, all the genome analysis work requires a good knowledge of bioinformatics tools that may be useful for genome researchers to extract the meaningful and accurate information from the genome sequence data of IAs. In this article, the most recent bioinformatics tools for the genomic and evolutionary analysis of infectious agents have been discussed and compared in detail which will help the genome researchers to select the most appropriate tool for genomic and evolutionary analysis of IAs.
  3,009 341 -
Chronic myeloid leukemia and ferritin levels
Kumar Saurabh, Veena Singh Ghalaut, Jyoti Bala
October-December 2017, 1(2):120-123
Background: Ferritin is a positive acute-phase reactant, exhibiting increased levels in blood during the acute-phase response. High plasma ferritin levels have been reported for various types of cancers, irrespective of the amount of total body iron. Hence, this study was designed to assess the status of ferritin levels in chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) patients both before and after chemotherapy and to compare them with age- and sex-matched healthy controls. Methods: Thirty patients of CML after confirmed diagnosis were taken up for the study. CML patients were treated by imatinib therapy. Serum ferritin was estimated by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay in thirty newly diagnosed CML patients and in thirty age- and sex-matched healthy controls. The test was repeated at first complete remission or at 3 months (whichever is earlier) in CML patients. Patients and controls were categorized into three groups as follows: (1) Group I: Control group –age- and sex-matched healthy volunteers (2) Group II: CML patients at the time of diagnosis (before imatinib therapy) (3) Group III: CML patients at first complete remission or at 3 months of imatinib therapy (whichever is earlier). Results: The ferritin levels were significantly increased in Group II and Group III (387.68 ± 221.61 ng/mL and 295.43 ± 169.17 ng/mL, respectively) as compared to controls (73.27 ± 60.82 ng/mL) (P = 0.000 and P = 0.000, respectively). The ferritin levels were decreased in Group III as compared to Group II, although the difference was not statistically significant (P = 0.075). Conclusion: Our study revealed that serum ferritin could be a useful marker in determining disease progression or monitor the effectiveness of treatment in leukemic patients.
  2,695 221 -
Role of magnesium in preeclampsia
Simmi Kharb, K Goel, J Bhardwaj, S Nanda
July-September 2018, 2(3):178-180
Background: The present study was planned to study the role of Mg in preeclampsia and its correlation with dietary intake of proteins and calories by analyzing serum Mg at 20 weeks, delivery, and cord blood Mg levels. Methods: The study was conducted in 102 pregnant women aged 17–36 years attending the outpatient department (OPD) before 20 weeks of gestation. The study samples were drawn twice: once before 20 weeks during visit in the OPD and second within 1 h of childbirth. Serum was analyzed for Mg levels using spectrophotometric method. Furthermore, thyroid-stimulating hormone and glucose challenge test were done as per the standard methods. Results: In normal pregnant women, the mean serum Mg level at <20 weeks of gestation was 2.03 ± 0.34 mg/dl, at term was 1.93 ± 0.41 mg/dl, and in cord blood was 1.84 ± 0.35 mg/dl. Conclusion: The study data support the hypothesis that Mg deficiency might be the causative factor in the development of preeclampsia.
  2,382 345 1
Liposomes as potential nanocarriers for theranostic applications in chronic inflammatory lung diseases
Hande Suer, Hasan Bayram
July-September 2017, 1(1):1-8
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and asthma affect millions of people worldwide. Conventional treatments are not sufficient at preventing the progression of these diseases. The treatments are unspecific, and when administered systematically, and in high doses, they have adverse health effects. Further, the current diagnostic methods are poor and they are not capable of identifying the accurate state of the disease. Nanoparticle-based theranostics (NBTs) are well-established systems that simultaneously provide treatment and diagnostics. Various nanocarriers can be used in NBT and are designed according to the need. In this review, liposome-based theranostic systems are evaluated and possible modifications that could provide better drug delivery and accumulation and diagnosis are exemplified. These systems can be applied to conventional therapeutics to avoid side effects and perhaps overcome the challenges that interfere with their cellular accumulation.
  2,272 421 -
Predictable repeatability issues with GeneXpert-Xpert MTB/RIF (version 4) derived rifampicin resistant tuberculosis results from South India: Appreciating the limits of a technological marvel!
Praveen Sanker, Ramya Puthukkudi Kottuthodi, Anusree Puthenveettil Ambika, Vishnu T Santhosh, Ravikrishnan Balakrishnan, Sunil Kumar Mrithunjayan, Hisham Moosan
July-September 2017, 1(1):76-80
Background: GeneXpert MTB/RIF (Xpert), the fully automated cartridge-based nucleic acid amplification test for simultaneous identification of Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex and rifampicin resistance (RR), directly from samples is considered as a game changer for tuberculosis (TB) control programs worldwide. Methods: We are reporting serious issues with repeatability among a subgroup of Xpert (Version 4) identified RR results from South Indian state recently switched to Xpert by the National TB control program. Results: We have demonstrated that poor repeatability is frequently associated with those Xpert derived RR results, identified by detection of delayed amplification of any probe in the presence of positive analyte results for all probes. Another significant contributing factor was found to be lower bacterial loads in samples. The repeat tests were done by Xpert and/or by line probe assay depending on smear positivity. The finding is worrying as Xpert is recommended over other tests due to its reportedly better performance among low bacterial load samples such as pediatric, extra-pulmonary, HIV-TB co-infected, and smear negative pulmonary TB and the same samples, it seems are more likely to cause error prone RR results. Conclusions: We recommend for additional genotypic tests with specific mutant probes for detecting mutations at rpoB hot sites and growth based tests for all Xpert derived RR-TB cases identified by the above algorithm for confirmation of the presence of mutation, based on our available data.
  2,289 313 3
Urine creatinine and anthropometric indices of sportsmen and women
Matilda Steiner-Asiedu, Juliet Vickar, Frederick Vuvor, Isaac Agbemafle, Yusif M Tahiru
October-December 2017, 1(2):134-140
Background: Interpretation of the different aerobic and anaerobic metabolism, training, and anthropometric indices of sportspersons from different sports discipline can aid in improving sports performance. This study sought to evaluate the association between urine creatinine concentration (UCR) and percentage body fat (%BF), body mass index (BMI), and duration of training (DOT) among University of Ghana sportspersons. Methods: A cross-sectional study design was used. Information on background characteristics, body weight, height, %BF, and sporting activity profiles were gathered on a convenient sample of 101 University of Ghana sportsmen and women across all levels of study. BMI and %BF were determined using the Omron Fat Loss Monitor™. Creatinine concentration in 24-h urine samples was analyzed using Jaffe's reaction, and absorbance read spectrophotometrically at 530 nm. Results: Mean age was 22 ± 3 years. Thirty-one percent (31%) of the participants played football, whereas 69% took part in other sports (handball, volleyball, rugby, and baseball). Average daily DOT of 113.6 ± 44 min (males) and 95.1 ± 54 min (females) was reported by the participants. Mean BMI and %BF were 23.1 ± 3.7 Kg/m2 and 23.2 ± 9.0%, respectively. The mean BMI was within normal range as per the WHO standards, whereas %BF exceeded required limits for each sports discipline. UCR was higher for males (1.2 ± 0.5 g/d) as compared to females (0.8 ± 0.5 g/d). There was a weak positive correlation between UCR and BMI (r = 0.123; P = 0.22) and between UCR and DOT (r = 0.074; P = 0.46). %BF and UCR were inversely related (r = −0.114, P = 0.26). There was no association between UCR and type of sports (P = 0.24). There was a significant association between the type of sports and BMI (P = 0.002). Conclusion: There was a weak positive correlation between creatinine and BMI as well as training duration. Type of sports played is a significant predictor of sportspersons' BMI.
  2,361 168 -
Advances in protein tertiary structure prediction
Tayebeh Farhadi
January-March 2018, 2(1):20-25
Proteins are composed of linear chains of amino acids that form a unique three-dimensional structure in their native environment. Such native structure favors the proteins to perform their biochemical activity. Protein is formed of some levels of structure. The primary structure of a protein is specified by the particular amino acid sequence. In an amino acid sequence, patterns of local bonding can be identified as secondary structure. The final level that forms a tertiary protein structure is composed of the mentioned elements and form after the protein folds into its native state. To find the native structure of proteins, the physicochemical principles as well as identifying the lowest free-energy states are considered as the best properties and to predict target proteins with unknown structures, the bioinformatics-based methods have earned considerable success. Protein structure prediction methods have been mainly classified into three types: ab Initio folding, comparative (homology) modeling and threading. Each mentioned method may be applied for a protein structure, depending on the existence of related experimental structures that are deposited in the PDB. Once an initial model is generated, refinement simulations are conducted to reassemble the global topology and the local structures of the protein chains. Since significant features of a model may be in regions that are structurally distinct from the template, refining of a primary model is influential. A trustful strategy is included a stereo-chemical check and discovering how the model deviates from the basic disciplines of known experimental structures.
  2,211 313 -
Evaluation of in silico protein secondary structure prediction methods by employing statistical techniques
Kandavelmani Angamuthu, Shanmughavel Piramanayagam
July-September 2017, 1(1):29-36
Background: With the advent of many new advanced techniques, sequences of a number of proteins have been made available. But the relative paucity of the experimentally determined three-dimensional structures of these proteins has paved way for the development of computational structure prediction methods. Protein secondary structure prediction is an essential step in modeling the tertiary structure. Among the various secondary structure prediction methods available, three different methods with unique working principles, namely, GOR, HNN, and SOPMA were evaluated for their efficiency to predict secondary structures. Methods: A set of 90 different proteins with known secondary structures from three major classes namely, mainly alpha, mainly beta, and mainly alpha beta was used as reference. Secondary structure data of these proteins obtained through experimental methods were compared with that of predictions made by GOR, HNN, and SOPMA respectively by employing various statistical analyses, namely paired sample test, correlation coefficient, standard deviation, standard error mean and scatter plots. Results: The secondary structure prediction tools namely, GOR and HNN were found to predict helical structures more accurately than the sheets. SOPMA was observed to predict sheets more accurately than helices. Conclusion: Based on the observed results, it could be concluded that there is no single tool that consistently predicts all the secondary structures accurately. It could also be anticipated that a combined use of these secondary prediction tools could further enhance the efficacy of in silico protein secondary structure prediction methods.
  2,144 276 3
Construction and genetic improvement of copper bioreporter Escherichia Coli
Kimia Taghavi, Puria Motamed Fath, Saman Hosseinkhani, Mohammad Mirzaei, Hadi Behrooj, Arda Kiani, Atefeh Abedini, Fatemeh Razavi
January-March 2018, 2(1):26-30
Background: Copper is a pollutant compound which can cause earnest toxicity in human and some organisms. Bioreporters are frugal and non-toxic detectors for pollution compounds. Precedent designed recombinant Escherichia coli copper bioreporters with the lux gene of Vibrio fischeri or Aequorin luciferase of Jellyfish does not provide a high sensitivity. The aim of current study was to design an incipient Copper bioreporter with applying firefly luciferase and Copper resistance promoter of P. syringae pv.Tomato in Escherichia coli XL1-Blue. Methods: Recombinant pGL3 was obtained by applying the pGL3-Control vector to Escherichia coli XL1-Blue, by Polymerase Chain Reaction method and double digestion. Recombinant Escherichia coli cells were cultured with applying different concentrations of copper sulphate to study the activity of luciferase by Luminometer. Copper bioreporter specificity was resolute by different concentrations of Zinc sulfate and Ferric sulfate. Results: Recombinant Escherichia coli BL21, with copper promoter gene in pGL3 Vector showed the highest Luciferase activity in 0.1 millimolar of Copper sulfate. The highest Luciferase activity was in 0.09 millimolar and 1.0 millimolar of Zinc sulfate and Ferric sulfate respectively. Conclusion: Current study provided a categorical bioreporter for detecting copper, utilizing firefly luciferase with a high specificity (96.1%). By optimizing inhibitor factors, application of current copper bioreporter can be developed in human life.
  2,042 299 -
Anti-tuberculosis therapy: Urgency for new drugs and integrative approach
Lingaraja Jena, Bhaskar C Harinath
January-March 2018, 2(1):16-19
Tuberculosis (TB) remains the major health problem causing morbidity and mortality throughout the world. Increase in multidrug resistant, extensively drug-resistant, and totally drug-resistant cases of tuberculosis are causing concern to the health administrators of TB control programs. In spite of tremendous research on drug targets and drugs in TB, no new drug which is safer and more effective, has come out. This mini-review focuses on different important drug targets in Mycobacterium tuberculosis reported and emphasizes the urgency for new drug development and integrative approach for successful control of TB.
  1,960 326 -
Longitudinal assessment of the bacterial burden of buruli ulcer wounds during treatment
Grace Kpeli, Evelyn Owusu-Mireku, Julia Hauser, Gerd Pluschke, Dorothy Yeboah-Manu
July-September 2017, 1(1):65-70
Background: Bacterial contamination is common to all wounds. The bacterial burden of wounds has been found to have an inverse relationship with chronic wound healing. In seeking to develop a better understanding of the evolution of Buruli ulcer (BU) wounds, we performed a longitudinal study to quantify the bacterial burden of BU wounds during the course of streptomycin/rifampicin (SR) treatment. Methods: Twenty-one IS2404 polymerase chain reaction confirmed patients were longitudinally followed during the course of their treatment. Swab or tissue samples obtained from the lesions were quantitatively analyzed to determine the bacterial burden pre-, during, and post-SR treatment. Furthermore, the species of bacterial isolates obtained at these time points were also identified. Results: Based on the determination of the bacterial burden, 18/22 (81.8%) pretreatment, 15/25 (57.7%) during treatment, and 36/48 (75.0%) posttreatment samples were classified as superinfected, respectively. Thirty bacterial species including two species of anaerobic Clostridia (Clostridium perfringens and Clostridium sporogenes) were identified among 114 isolates. While Enterococcus faecalis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Chryseomonas luteola dominated pretreatment, P. aeruginosa dominated during and posttreatment. Conclusions: Most BU patients presented with lesions with a high bacterial load which increased significantly posttreatment. Therefore, good wound care is necessary to control the microbial burden of BU wounds, especially posttreatment to minimize complications.
  2,082 162 -
Tuberculosis Serology is Useful in Rural Areas
Roland Maes
October-December 2017, 1(2):85-93
The fight on tuberculosis initiated after World War II with the imposition of the Bacillus Calmette–Guérin (BCG) vaccine by the WHO in 1950, and the discovery of the drug streptomycin, which was rapidly followed by a recommended 4 drug regimen (isoniazid, ethambutol, rifampicin, pyrazinamide, and streptomycin being reserved to resistant cases). The diagnostic that justified a treatment was based on the microscopic examination of bacterial presence in sputum, that is, the bacilloscopy, and on culture in vitro of the pathogen, which is more expensive and much more demanding on time. During the following 7 decennia, this approach remained unchanged: no new vaccines were developed despite the documented observed ineffectiveness of the BCG, and the 4 drug regimen (plus streptomycin) admitted additional drugs only from 2012 on. The ineffectiveness of the original 4 + 1-drug cocktail, that became obvious in France in 1994, is traced in part to the immunodepressing effect of some of them. The use of only four drugs also favors defensive mutations by the pathogen. The late addition of more antibiotics to the regular regimen applied to multidrug-resistant-cases may be useful on the immediate term but side effects are crimpling and evidently, measures in addition to “more drugs” must be taken to control the disease. A diagnostic based exclusively on antigen detection remained the norm during nearly 7 decennia. This detection benefited from technologically improved methods (e.g., the interferon test and the numerous nucleic acid amplification tests). The latest of these is the GeneXpert/RIF test. This newly devised antigen test is a quantitative improvement on previous tests detecting the presence of the antigen. However, due to its centralized system of analysis and inaccuracy, it is not suited for rural areas, and it does not favor communication between mycobacteriologist, immunologist, and clinician. In this review article, the concentration is on those rare publications that highlighted the problem posed by various diagnostic tests and their application.
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