SciCombinator

Discover the most talked about and latest scientific content & concepts.

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Pediatric acute kidney injury (AKI) is a frequently missed complication. AKI has a significant impact on both short- and long-term outcomes in children. Within the last decade, there have been major landmark developments in this field of critical care pediatric nephrology. The topic was searched by two independent researchers using Google Scholar and PubMed and related studies published in the last 10 years. The terms used for the search were ‘pediatric acute kidney injury,’ ‘pediatric acute renal failure,’ ‘pediatric dialysis,’ ‘biomarkers,’ ‘nephrotoxins,’ ‘nephrotoxicity in children,’ and ‘pediatric critical care nephrology.’ We found that AKI is common in critically ill neonates and children. Among the various definitions, the Kidney Disease: Improving Global Outcomes (KDIGO) definition is most commonly used. In addition, it is imperative to risk stratify sick children at admission in the hospital to predict AKI and worse outcomes as this aids in early management. There are now major landmark trials that describe the epidemiology, prevention, and management guidelines in this field and health care professionals need to be aware they should diagnose AKI early. Overall, this review highlights the landmark studies in the last decade and shows that early diagnosis and management of AKI in ‘at risk’ children can improve outcomes.

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Over the past year, the novel coronavirus has been a topic of significant research. Multiple gastroenterological symptoms have been associated with this infection, in addition to the well-established pulmonary presentations. Gastrointestinal bleeding can be a complication of infection by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2, which can be exacerbated by the anticoagulants used to treat its thrombotic sequelae. We describe the clinical cases of four patients infected with the novel coronavirus, with significant upper gastrointestinal bleeding requiring endoscopic visualization, along with their clinical outcomes.

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To describe the radiological features, diagnostic accuracy and features of imaging studies and their relation with clinical course of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pneumonia in pregnant women.

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Objective: To compare the effects of artesunate (Art) and fuzheng huayu decoction on mitochondrial autophagy in the treatment of schistosomiasis liver fibrosis. Methods: Eighty C57BL/6 female mice were randomly divided into healthy control group, infection group, Art treatment group and Fuzheng Huayu Decoction treatment group, with 20 mice in each group. Mice in the infection group and treatment group were infected with 16 Schistosoma japonicum cercariae. After 6 weeks, praziquantel (300 mg/kg) was used for 2 days to kill the worms. The Art treatment group was treated with intraperitoneal injection of 100 mg/kg/day, while the Fuzheng Huayu Decoction treatment group was fed 16g of fuzheng huayu decoction per 1kg per day. After 6 weeks, fresh liver tissues of the four groups were collected. Masson staining and Western blot were used to observe the succinate dehydrogenase subunit A (SDHA) and malate dehydrogenase (MDH2), citrate synthase (CS), ketoglutarate dehydrogenase (OGDH), and target of rapamycin 1 (mTORC1) pathway involved in mitochondrial tricarboxylic acid cycle in liver tissues. The relative expression levels of adenylate activated protein kinase (AMPK) and mitochondrial autophagy pathway kinase (PINK1) were detected. Liver tissue samples were extracted from each group to detect the mitochondrial oxygen consumption rate. Two-way ANOVA was used to compare the significance and difference between two sets of samples. Results: Masson staining showed that the infection group mice had significantly higher liver fibrosis area than the healthy control group, while the Art treatment group and Fuzheng Huayu Decoction treatment group mice had lower liver fibrosis area than the infection group. Western blot analysis showed that the infection group (0.82±0.05) had significantly lower relative expression of SDHA protein than the healthy control group (1.00±0.05) (t = 11.23, P = 0.0035), while the Art treatment group (0.73±0.05) had significantly higher relative expression of SDHA protein than the infection group (t = 10.79, P = 0.0073). However, there was no significant change in Fuzheng Huayu Decoction treatment group (0.98±0.05) (t = 1.925,P= 0.1266). The relative expression of p-AMPK protein was significantly higher in the infection group (1.15 ±0.05) than in the healthy control group (0.98±0.07,t= 12.18, P = 0.0029), and the expression of p-AMPK in the Art treatment group (0.50±0.05) was significantly lower than the infection group (t = 11.78,P= 0.0032). The relative protein expression of AMPK was significantly lower in the infection group (0.80±0.05) than in the healthy control group (1.00±0.05, t= 10.53, P= 0.0046). The expression of AMPK was significantly lower in the Art treatment group (0.54±0.05) than in the infection group (T = 13.98, P = 0.0036). The relative expression of p-mTORC1 protein (0.93±0.08) was not significantly different in the infection group than in the healthy control group (t = 2.28, P = 0.065), while the Art treatment group (0.63±0.05) had significantly lower relative expression of p-mTORC1 protein than the infection group (t = 10.58, P = 0.029). The expression of p-mTORC1/m-TORC1 was not significantly different in the infection group (0.98±0.03) than in the healthy control group (0.97±0.03, t = 0.98, P = 0.085), while the Art treatment group (0.63±0.05) had significantly lower relative expression of p-mTORC1/m-TORC1 than the infection group (t = 14.58, P = 0. 009). The relative protein expression of PINK1 was significantly lower in the infection group (0.55±0.05) than in the healthy control group (1.00±0.03, t = 13.49, P = 0.0011), while the Art treatment group (1.21±0.05, t = 9.98, P = 0.0046) and Fuzheng Huayu Decoction treatment group (1.31 ±0.35, t = 6.98, P = 0.027) had significantly higher relative protein expression of PINK1 than the infection group. Mitochondrial function tests showed that after adding substrate complex II, the oxygen consumption of the infection group was lower than the healthy control group, while the Art treatment group and the Fuzheng Huayu Decoction treatment group had higher oxygen consumption than the infection group. The oxygen consumption was significantly lower after adding the substrate complex III in the infection group than the healthy control group, while the Art treatment group and Fuzheng Huayu Decoction treatment group had higher oxygen consumption than the infection group. Conclusion: Art can alleviate schistosomiasis liver fibrosis by inhibiting AMPK/mTORC1 signaling pathway activity and enhancing mitochondrial oxygen consumption, autophagy and SDHA expression.

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Nanoscale artificial antigen-presenting cells (aAPCs) are promising to activate T cells directly for cancer immunotherapy, while feasible and flexible strategy to develop nanoscale aAPCs remains highly desirable. Metabolic glycoengineering is used to decorate chemical tags on cells which enables bioorthogonal chemical conjugation of functional molecules. Herein, we develop a nanoscale aAPC by metabolic dendritic cell (DC) labeling to mobilize T-cell based antitumor immunity. We coat azido-labeled DC membrane on imiquimod-loaded polymeric nanoparticles and sequentially modify anti-CD3ε antibody via click chemistry. The nanoscale aAPCs perform improved distribution in lymph nodes and stimulate T cells and resident APCs. Significant inhibition of tumor inoculation and growth is observed after the vaccination, which can be further improved by combining antiprogrammed cell death receptor 1 (PD1) therapy. Our results demonstrate the promising application of metabolically labeled DCs for designing nanoscale aAPCs, which provide a simple and general strategy to potentiate cancer immunotherapy.

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RARS is a challenging clinical problem that impacts many patients. This article seeks to systematically review the literature on RARS management.

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Candida spp. have attracted considerable attention as they cause serious human diseases in immunocompromised individuals. The genomes of the pathogenic Candida spp. have been sequenced, but systemic characterizations of their kinomes are yet to be reported. As in various eukaryotes, the protein kinases play crucial regulatory roles in pathogenicity of Candida. Increased frequency of antifungal resistance in Candida spp. requires significant attention to explore novel therapeutic molecules for their control. The present in-silico study involves novel bioinformatics strategies to identify the kinase proteins and their potential drug targets with the purpose to combat fungal infections. The study reports 103, 107 and 106 kinase proteins from 3 Candida spp., C. albicans, C. parapsilosis and C. tropicalis, respectively. Moreover, 79 common kinase proteins were identified, of which 54 proteins play essential roles in Candida spp. and 42 proteins were human non-homologues. Among the essential and human non-homologous protein kinases, 9 were found to be common essential human non-homologues, of which 6 are uniquely present in Candida. These 6 protein kinases namely, Hsl1, Npr1, Ptk2, Kin2, Ksp1 and orf19.3854 (CAALFM_CR06040WA) are involved in various molecular and cellular processes regulating virulence or pathogenicity. Further, these 6 kinases are prioritized as potential drug targets and explored for discovering new lead compounds against candidiasis. The drug repurposing approach for these 6 kinases show 13 approved drugs and investigational compounds that might play substantial inhibitory roles during combating candidiasis.

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Solution-processing methods were investigated as viable alternatives to produce the polymer-bonded barium hexaferrite (BaM). BaM powders were first synthesized by using the sol-gel auto-combustion method. While the ignition period in two synthesis batches varied, the morphology of hexagonal microplates and nanorods, as well as magnetic properties, were reproduced. To prepare magnetic polymer composites, these BaM powders were then incorporated into the acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS) matrix with a weight ratio of 80:20, 70:30, and 60:40 by using the solution casting method. Magnetizations were linearly decreased with a reduction in ferrite loading. Compared to the BaM loose powders and pressed pellet, both remanent and saturation magnetizations were lower and gave rise to comparable values of the squareness. The squareness around 0.5 of BaM samples and their composites revealed the isotropic alignment. Interestingly, the coercivity was significantly increased from 1727-1776 Oe in loose BaM powders to 1874-2052 Oe for the BaM-ABS composites. These composites have potential to be implemented in the additive manufacturing of rare-earth-free magnets.

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The dairy Nutrients Requirements of Cattle (NRC) was developed using data from purebred Holsteins and it might not accurately predict the performance of crossbred cattle. Our objectives were to evaluate the effects of two feeding levels (FLs) and three breed compositions (BCs) on nutrient intake, digestibility, performance, and methane (CH4) emissions of prepubertal dairy heifers. We used thirty-six heifers from three BCs: purebred Holstein (H), purebred Gyr (G), and F1 Holstein × Gyr (HG). Each BC had 12 animals and the experiment was designed as twelve incomplete three by three Latin squares, in a factorial arrangement three by two, with three BCs and two FLs (400 and 800 g/day). Total tract nutrient digestibility was determined using total fecal collection and DMI was individually measured. The data were analyzed using the PROC MIXED in SAS. Dry matter intake of all nutrients increased from the medium to high feeding level and the nutrients digestibility coefficients did differ among BCs. Achieved body weight gain in the medium FL treatment was greater than those predicted using the NRC, suggesting that crossbred and Gyr heifers have similar performance to Holsteins. Breed composition does not influence body weight gain of confined dairy heifers, but Holstein heifers fed a medium FL had higher feed efficiency and reduced CH4 emissions intensity.

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In this investigation, sludge fibre waste (SFW) and Kraft lignin powder (KLP) are introduced into polylactic acid (PLA) matrix biocomposites. These alternative materials allow for both the reuse of fibre waste from paper mill sludge and a reduction in the amount of high-cost biopolymer used in the same volume. Proportions from 10 to 40 wt.% of SFW with the addition of 2.5% and 5% of KLP are incorporated in PLA by extrusion and injection moulding. The thermogravimetric properties, water absorption, tensile and flexural properties, and morphology of the fabricated biocomposites were investigated. According to the results, KLP contributes to thermically stabilising the loss resulting from the incorporation of SFW. Flexural and tensile tests reveal a more pronounced decrease in strength with an SFW ratio above 10%. The modulus of elasticity increases significantly with an SFW ratio above 20%. The strength properties are stabilised with the addition of 5% KLP. The addition of KLP presents a tendency to reduce water absorption obtained by the incorporation of SFW into biocomposites. Scanning electron micrographs evidence that KLP improves the interfacial adhesion by reducing the voids between fibres and PLA.