Research Spotlight

Posted May 15th 2016

Evaluation of microrna375 as a novel biomarker for graft damage in clinical islet transplantation.

Bashoo Naziruddin Ph.D.

Bashoo Naziruddin Ph.D.

Kanak, M. A., M. Takita, R. Shahbazov, M. C. Lawrence, W. Y. Chung, A. R. Dennison, M. F. Levy and B. Naziruddin (2015). “Evaluation of microrna375 as a novel biomarker for graft damage in clinical islet transplantation.” Transplantation 99(8): 1568-1573.

Full text of this article.

Background. Early and sensitive detection of islet graft damage is essential for improving posttransplant outcomes. MicroRNA 375 (miR375) has been reported as a biomarker of pancreatic beta-cell death in small animal models. Methods. The miR375 levels were measured in purified human islets, sera from patients with autologous and allogeneic islet transplantation as well as total pancreatectomy alone (nontransplanted group). The miR375 levels were also determined in a miniaturized in vitro tube model comprising human islets and autologous blood. Results. The miR375 expression level in islets was dose-dependent (P < 0.001) and significantly elevated after islet damage in plasma in the in vitro model (P = 0.003). Clinical analysis revealed that circulating miR375 levels in both autologous and allogeneic islet recipients were significantly elevated for 7 days after islet infusion, compared with the nontransplanted group (P = 0.005 and < 0.001, respectively). Furthermore, miR375 detected the difference in islet graft damage among 3 different anti-inflammatory protocols for clinical autologous transplantation (P < 0.01). Conclusions. Circulating miR375 can be a reliable biomarker to detect graft damage in clinical islet transplantation because serum C-peptide and proinsulin levels are difficult to interpret due to the influence of multiple factors, such as beta-cell stress and physiological response.


Posted May 15th 2016

Headache and chiari i malformation in children and adolescents.

Chaouki K. Khoury M.D.E

Chaouki K. Khoury, M.D.

Victorio, M. C. and C. K. Khoury (2016). “Headache and chiari i malformation in children and adolescents.” Seminars in Pediatric Neurology 23(1): 35-39.

Full text of this article.

Headache is a common problem in children and adolescents. Its recurrent and disabling nature may lead to use of neuroimaging to exclude secondary causes of headache such as Chiari I malformation (CM I). CM I has a variety of presentation with headache being the most common symptom. CM I can be asymptomatic and is also often found incidentally in neuroimaging done for conditions other than headache. This article reviews the spectrum of headache in patients with CM I.


Posted May 15th 2016

Management of primary headache in the emergency department and inpatient headache unit.

Chaouki K. Khoury M.D.

Chaouki K. Khoury, M.D.

Kabbouche, M. and C. K. Khoury (2016). “Management of primary headache in the emergency department and inpatient headache unit.” Seminars in Pediatric Neurology 23(1): 40-43.

Full text of this article.

Migraine is a chronic disorder with debilitating exacerbations throughout the lifetime of migraineurs. Children and adolescents are significantly affected. The prevalence of migraine in this age group is higher than predicted in the last decade. Fortunately, this chronic disease is getting more attention and recognition, and better treatments are now being offered to these patients. Different medications are available, mostly for the outpatient management of an attack and include the use of over-the-counter antiinflammatory medications as well as prescribed medications like the triptans group. These therapies do sometime fail and the exacerbations can last days to weeks. Early aggressive intravenous treatment can be very effective in breaking the attack and allowing the child to be functional faster and sometimes may prevent chronification of an attack.


Posted May 15th 2016

Reproductive health and women with congenital heart disease a practice update.

Claudia C. Beal Ph.D.

Claudia C. Beal, Ph.D.

Osteen, K. A. and C. C. Beal (2016). “Reproductive health and women with congenital heart disease a practice update.” Journal of Perinatal & Neonatal Nursing 30(1): 25-35.

Full text of this article.

The purpose of this article was to examine reproductive health issues for women with congenital structural abnormalities of the heart. Because of surgical advances and innovations in healthcare, infants with congenital heart disease often live now into adulthood. Women with congenital heart disease have reported the desire to have children but expressed concern about fertility and the health consequences of pregnancy. Although many women with congenital heart disease are able to give birth without adverse outcomes, life-threatening complications can occur. Best practices for the care of women with congenital heart disease are grounded in an understanding of how cardiac defects may affect pregnancy and in communicating the implications of cardiac defects for reproductive health to support informed decision making.


Posted May 15th 2016

Intradermal injection of an anti-langerin-hivgag fusion vaccine targets epidermal langerhans cells in nonhuman primates and can be tracked in vivo.

Gerard Zurawski Ph.D.

Gerard Zurawski, Ph.D.

Salabert, N., B. Todorova, F. Martinon, R. Boisgard, G. Zurawski, S. Zurawski, N. Dereuddre-Bosquet, A. Cosma, T. Kortulewski, J. Banchereau, Y. Levy, R. Le Grand and C. Chapon (2016). “Intradermal injection of an anti-langerin-hivgag fusion vaccine targets epidermal langerhans cells in nonhuman primates and can be tracked in vivo.” European Journal of Immunology 46(3): 689-700.

Full text of this article.

The development of new immunization strategies requires a better understanding of early molecular and cellular events occurring at the site of injection. The skin is particularly rich in immune cells and represents an attractive site for vaccine administration. Here, we specifically targeted vaccine antigens to epidermal Langerhans cells (LCs) using a fusion protein composed of HIV antigens and a monoclonal antibody targeting Langerin. We developed a fluorescence imaging approach to visualize, in vivo, the vaccine-targeted cells. Studies were performed in nonhuman primates (NHPs) because of their relevance as a model to assess human vaccines. We directly demonstrated that in NHPs, intradermally injected anti-Langerin-HIVGag specifically targets epidermal LCs and induces rapid changes in the LC network, including LC activation and migration out of the epidermis. Vaccine targeting of LCs significantly improved anti-HIV immune response without requirement of an adjuvant. Although the co-injection of the TLR-7/8 synthetic ligand, R-848 (resiquimod), with the vaccine, did not enhance significantly the antibody response, it stimulated recruitment of HLA-DR+ inflammatory cells to the site of immunization. This study allowed us to characterize the dynamics of early local events following the injection of a vaccine-targeted epidermal LCs and R-848.