American University of BeirutBeirut


American University of BeirutBeirut

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Moussa Z.,American University of BeirutBeirut | Chebl M.,American University of BeirutBeirut | Patra D.,American University of BeirutBeirut
Colloids and Surfaces B: Biointerfaces | Year: 2017

Stability of curcumin in neutral and alkaline buffer conditions has been a serious concern for its medicinal applications. We demonstrate that the stability of curucmin can be improved in 1,2-Dioctadecanoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (DSPC) liposomes. Curcumin strongly partition into liquid crystalline phase compared to solid gel phase of DSPC liposomes. Variation of fluorescence intensity of curcumin associated with liposomes with temperature successfully determines phase transition temperature of DSPC liposomes. However, at higher molar ratio curcumin can influence phase transition temperature by intercalating into deep hydrophobic layer of liposomes and facilitating fusion of two membrane phases. Rhamnolipids (RLs) are recently being applied for various biomedical applications. Here, we have explored new insight on intercalation of rhamnolipids with DSPC liposomes. Intercalation of rhamnolipids exceptionally increases partition of curcumin into solid gel phase of DSPC liposomes, whereas this increase is moderate in liquid crystalline phase. Fluorescence quenching study establishes that permeability and fluidity of the DSPC liposomes are enhanced in the presence of RLs. Membrane permeability and fluidity can be improved further by increasing the percentage of RLs in DSPC liposomes. The phase transition temperature of DSPC liposomes decreases with increase in percentage of RLs in DSPC liposomes by encouraging fusion between solid gel and liquid crystalline phases. Intercalation of RLs is found to further boost stability of drug, curcumin, in DSPC liposomes. Thus, mixing RLs with DSPC liposomes could potentially serve as a good candidate for drug delivery application. © 2016 Elsevier B.V.

Hamida Z.,American University of BeirutBeirut | Azizi F.,American University of BeirutBeirut | Saad G.,American University of BeirutBeirut
Journal of Petroleum Science and Engineering | Year: 2017

This study aims at introducing a problem-specific modified Genetic Algorithm (GA) approach for optimal well placement in oil fields. The evolution method used in this algorithm includes a novel genetic operator named “Similarity Operator” alongside the standard operators (i.e. Mutation and Crossover). The role of the proposed operator is to find promising solutions that share similar features with the current elite solution in the population. For the well placement problem in oil fields, these features include the new well location with respect to pre-located wells and the porosity value at the proposed location. The presented approach highlights the importance of the interaction between the nominated location and the pre-located wells in the reservoir. In addition, it enables systematic improvements on the solution while preserving the exploration and exploitation properties of the stochastic search algorithm. The robustness of Genetic Similarity Algorithm (GSA) is assessed on both the PUNQ-S3 and the Brugge field data sets. © 2016 Elsevier B.V.

Battipaglia G.,Saint Antoine Hospital | Ruggeri A.,Saint Antoine Hospital | Massoud R.,American Universit6y of Beirut Medical CenterBeirut | El Cheikh J.,American Universit6y of Beirut Medical CenterBeirut | And 19 more authors.
Cancer | Year: 2017

BACKGROUND: Sorafenib has shown encouraging results in patients with Fms-like tyrosine kinase 3 (FLT3)-positive acute myeloid leukemia. Its role after allogeneic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) has been reported in a few cases with encouraging results. METHODS: The authors describe the use of sorafenib as a maintenance agent after HSCT in 27 patients with FLT3-positive acute myeloid leukemia. RESULTS: The median age of the patients was 46 years (range, 15-57 years). Sorafenib was introduced at a median of 70 days (range, 29-337 days) after HSCT. The median treatment duration was 8.4 months (range, 0.2-46 months). Eleven patients experienced treatment toxicities, mainly of grade 1 to 2 (graded according to the National Cancer Institute Common Toxicity Criteria [version 4.0]). Dose reduction or withdrawal was required in 4 patients and 4 patients, respectively. The persistence of toxicity prompted treatment withdrawal in 1 patient. Clinical improvement followed dose modifications. Thirteen patients experienced chronic graft-versus-host disease (limited in 9 patients and extensive in 4 patients), resulting in dose reduction in 5 patients followed by withdrawal in 1 of these individuals. At a median follow-up of 18 months (range, 4-48 months), 25 patients were alive (all of whom were in complete molecular remission) and 18 were still receiving treatment, with median overall survival and progression-free survival rates of 92%±6% and 92%±5%, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: Sorafenib treatment after HSCT appears to be feasible and highly effective with dose individualization according to patient tolerability. Further analysis is needed to evaluate the immunomodulating role of sorafenib after HSCT. The data from the current support prospective controlled trials of sorafenib after HSCT. © 2017 American Cancer Society.

Shoker T.A.,American University of BeirutBeirut | Tanios R.,American University of BeirutBeirut | Fayad R.,American University of BeirutBeirut | Ghaddar T.H.,American University of BeirutBeirut
RSC Advances | Year: 2015

We report a new family of ruthenium poly-pyridyl complexes that bear tetrazolate based ligands (either bi-chelate as in T162 or tri-chelate as in T120 and T147), along with their spectroscopic, electrochemical, and theoretical characterization. Dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs) with these complexes show good conversion efficiencies that are highly dependent on the respective electrolyte composition especially in the case of T120 and T147, due to their low lying LUMOs when compared to N719 and T162. DSSCs based on these dyes showed superb stability under light soaking at 70 °C for 2000 h. The T120 and T147 based cells retained their initial efficiencies after the long term-stability test, while the T162 and N719 efficiencies decreased by 18% and 40%, respectively. This journal is © The Royal Society of Chemistry.

Abdal-Hay A.,South Valley University | Hasan A.,American University of BeirutBeirut | Hasan A.,Qatar University | Yu-Kyoung,Chonbuk National University | And 4 more authors.
Materials Science and Engineering C | Year: 2016

This article demonstrates the use of hybrid nanofibers to improve the biodegradation rate and biocompatibility of AM50 magnesium alloy. Biodegradable hybrid membrane fiber layers containing nano-hydroxyapatite (nHA) particles and poly(lactide)(PLA) nanofibers were coated layer-by-layer (LbL) on AM50 coupons using a facile single-step air jet spinning (AJS) approach. The corrosion performance of coated and uncoated coupon samples was investigated by means of electrochemical measurements. The results showed that the AJS 3D membrane fiber layers, particularly the hybrid membrane layers containing a small amount of nHA (3 wt.%), induce a higher biocorrosion resistance and effectively decrease the initial degradation rate compared with the neat AM50 coupon samples. The adhesion strength improved highly due to the presence of nHA particles in the AJS layer. Furthermore, the long biodegradation rates of AM50 alloy in Hank's balanced salt solution (HBSS) were significantly controlled by the AJS-coatings. The results showed a higher cytocompatibility for AJS-coatings compared to that for neat Mg alloys. The nanostructured nHA embedded hybrid PLA nanofiber coating can therefore be a suitable coating material for Mg alloy as a potential material for biodegradable metallic orthopedic implants. © 2015 Elsevier B.V.

PubMed | American University of BeirutBeirut, Lebanese International University and American University of Beirut
Type: | Journal: Frontiers in microbiology | Year: 2016

Peramivir is a novel cyclopentane neuraminidase inhibitor of influenza virus. It was approved by the Food and Drug Administration in December 2014 for treatment of acute uncomplicated influenza in patients 18 years and older. For several months prior to approval, the drug was made clinically available under Emergency Use authorization during the 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic. Peramivir is highly effective against human influenza A and B isolates as well as emerging influenza virus strains with pandemic potential. Clinical trials demonstrated that the drug is well-tolerated in adult and pediatric populations. Adverse events are generally mild to moderate and similar in frequency to patients receiving placebo. Common side effects include gastrointestinal disorders and decreased neutrophil counts but are self-limiting. Peramivir is administered as a single-dose via the intravenous route providing a valuable therapeutic alternative for critically ill patients or those unable to tolerate other administration routes. Successful clinical trials and post-marketing data in pediatric populations in Japan support the safety and efficacy of peramivir in this population where administration of other antivirals might not be feasible.

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