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Duhaime A.-C.,Massachusetts General Hospital | Beckwith J.G.,Simbex, Llc | Maerlender A.C.,Pediatric Neuropsychological Services | Crisco J.J.,Bioengineering Laboratory | And 5 more authors.
Journal of Neurosurgery | Year: 2012

Object. Concussive head injuries have received much attention in the medical and public arenas, as concerns have been raised about the potential short- and long-term consequences of injuries sustained in sports and other activities. While many student athletes have required evaluation after concussion, the exact definition of concussion has varied among disciplines and over time. The authors used data gathered as part of a multiinstitutional longitudinal study of the biomechanics of head impacts in helmeted collegiate athletes to characterize what signs, symptoms, and clinical histories were used to designate players as having sustained concussions. Methods. Players on 3 college football teams and 4 ice hockey teams (male and female) wore helmets instrumented with Head Impact Telemetry (HIT) technology during practices and games over 2-4 seasons of play. Preseason clinical screening batteries assessed baseline cognition and reported symptoms. If a concussion was diagnosed by the team medical staff, basic descriptive information was collected at presentation, and concussed players were reevaluated serially. The specific symptoms or findings associated with the diagnosis of acute concussion, relation to specific impact events, timing of symptom onset and diagnosis, and recorded biomechanical parameters were analyzed. Results. Data were collected from 450 athletes with 486,594 recorded head impacts. Forty-eight separate concussions were diagnosed in 44 individual players. Mental clouding, headache, and dizziness were the most common presenting symptoms. Thirty-one diagnosed cases were associated with an identified impact event; in 17 cases no specific impact event was identified. Onset of symptoms was immediate in 24 players, delayed in 11, and unspecified in 13. In 8 cases the diagnosis was made immediately after a head impact, but in most cases the diagnosis was delayed (median 17 hours). One diagnosed concussion involved a 30-second loss of consciousness; all other players retained alertness. Most diagnoses were based on self-reported symptoms. The mean peak angular and rotational acceleration values for those cases associated with a specific identified impact were 86.1 ±42.6g (range 16.5-177.9g) and 3620 ± 2166 rad/sec2 (range 183-7589 rad/sec2), respectively. Conclusions. Approximately two-thirds of diagnosed concussions were associated with a specific contact event. Half of all players diagnosed with concussions had delayed or unclear timing of onset of symptoms. Most had no externally observed findings. Diagnosis was usually based on a range of self-reported symptoms after a variable delay. Accelerations clustered in the higher percentiles for all impact events, but encompassed a wide range. These data highlight the heterogeneity of criteria for concussion diagnosis, and in this sports context, its heavy reliance on self-reported symptoms. More specific and standardized definitions of clinical and objective correlates of a "concussion spectrum" may be needed in future research efforts, as well as in the clinical diagnostic arena.


Ricotti L.,Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies | Ravaschio A.,Bioengineering Laboratory
Gait and Posture | Year: 2011

Static balance in young athletes is an important ability that has a relevant influence on their present and future sport performances, as well as on the reduction in risk of injury. The present study reports data collected on three homogeneous groups of 9 years-old athletes (n=10 for each group), whose static balance was monitored every two months during an overall period of six months. At the beginning of the study, all of the children in each of the three groups were performing soccer activity with a frequency (three times a week) that was kept constant during the observation period. During the six months, group 1 maintained only the soccer activity, group 2 also performed swimming activity (twice a week) in parallel with the soccer activity, while group 3 started, at month 2, to perform soccer activity with a break dance course (twice a week). Double leg stance (with eyes open and closed) and single leg stance (on dominant and non-dominant leg) tests were performed using a force platform, and the COP area calculated for each trial. Results show a clear decrease in the " soccer + break dance" players COP area values during the six months, suggesting an improvement in their static balance. The difference was significantly greater with respect to that of soccer players and " soccer + swimming" players. This was evident in all the tests performed starting from two months after the break dance activity began. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.


Oliveira R.N.,Bioengineering Laboratory | Oliveira R.N.,Dublin City University | Alves G.G.,Federal University of Fluminense | Soares G.D.A.,Federal University of Rio de Janeiro | And 2 more authors.
Interface Focus | Year: 2014

Polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) hydrogels are materials for potential use in burn healing. Silver nanoparticles can be synthesized within PVA hydrogels giving antimicrobial hydrogels. Hydrogels have to be swollen prior to their application, and the common medium available for that in hospitals is saline solution, but the hydrogel could also take up some of the wound's fluid. This work developed gamma-irradiated PVA/nano-Ag hydrogels for potential use in burn dressing applications. Silver nitrate (AgNO3) was used as nano-Ag precursor agent. Saline solution, phosphate-buffered solution (PBS) pH 7.4 and solution pH 4.0 were used as swelling media. Microstructural evaluation revealed an effect of the nanoparticles on PVA crystallization. The swelling of the PVA-Ag samples in solution pH 4.0 was low, as was their silver delivery, compared with the equivalent samples swollen in the other media. The highest swelling and silver delivery were related to samples prepared with 0.50% AgNO3, and they also presented lower strength in PBS pH 7.4 and solution pH 4.0. Both PVA-Ag samples were also non-toxic and presented antimicrobial activity, confirming that 0.25% AgNO3 concentration is sufficient to establish an antimicrobial effect. Both PVA-Ag samples presented suitable mechanical and swelling properties in all media, representative of potential burn site conditions. © 2013 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.


Wilczek P.,Bioengineering Laboratory | Zembala M.,Silesian Center for Heart Diseases | Cichon T.,Center of Oncology of Poland | Smolarczyk R.,Center of Oncology of Poland | Szala S.,Center of Oncology of Poland
Kardiochirurgia i Torakochirurgia Polska | Year: 2012

Specific cardiac stem/progenitor cells (CSCs/CPCs) are multipotent and clonogenic, giving rise to cardiomyocytes, smooth muscle cells and endothelial cells. These cells can be used in cell therapy for the treatment of diseased heart tissue, but there is a need for an effective targeting system that directs the cells to the infarcted area. The aim of this study was to monitor changes in CSC/CPC morphology and the percentage of c-kit- and MDR-1-positive cells after culturing on various substrata and in different media. Myocardial tissue samples were taken from explanted hearts under sterile conditions. After the cells had grown to confluence, they were detached by gentle enzymatic digestion and seeded on poly-D-lysine-coated dishes. After a period of one week, the cells were transferred onto different substrata and cultured with growth factors and without growth factors. Cells transferred to the culture dishes coated with different substrata presented differences in morphology and in the percentage of c-kit- and MDR-1-positive cells. Higher percentages of c-kit- and MDR-1-positive cells were observed on the fbronectin-coated dishes cultured without growth factors. The data obtained should be useful for the construction of a Scaffold dedicated to the effective transfer of c-kit- and MDR-1-positive cells to the damaged heart.


Lee S.,Bioengineering Laboratory | Lee S.,University of Tokyo | Hosokawa K.,Bioengineering Laboratory | Kim S.,Dongguk University | And 8 more authors.
Microchimica Acta | Year: 2016

The authors have developed a porous silicon (P-Si) based duplex antibody microarray platform for simultaneous quantitation of the biomarkers prostate-specific antigen (PSA) and human glandular kallikrein 2 (hK2) in serum. Pore size-controlled P-Si surfaces have an extremely enlarged surface area that enables high-density immobilization of fluorescently labeled antibodies by physical adsorption. Automated microarraying of the antibodies provides a fast and reproducible duplex format of antibody arrays on the P-Si chips placed in the wells of a microtiter plate. The assay platform showed a 100 fg·mL−1 limit of detection for both PSA and hK2, and a dynamic range that extends over five orders of magnitude. After optimization of the density of both capture antibodies, neither the PSA nor the hK2 array showed cross-sensitivity to non-target proteins or other plasma proteins. The microarray was evaluated by titration of PSA and hK2, respectively, in the same serum samples. In our perception, this highly sensitive and selective platform holds promise for improved detection of tumor markers in an early diagnostic stage, but also to monitor the recurrence of prostate cancer. [Figure not available: see fulltext.] © 2016 Springer-Verlag Wien


Thirumala S.,Bioengineering Laboratory | Thirumala S.,Louisiana State University | Gimble J.M.,Louisiana State University | Devireddy R.V.,Bioengineering Laboratory
Journal of Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine | Year: 2010

Developing effective techniques for the cryopreservation of human adipose-derived adult stem cells could increase the usefulness of these cells in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine. Unfortunately, the use of serum and a commonly used cryoprotectant chemical, dimethyl sulphoxide (DMSO), during cryopreservation storage restricts the direct translation of adult stem cells to in vivo applications. The objective of this study was to test the hypothesis that the stromal vascular fraction (SVF) of adipose tissue can be effectively cryopreserved and stored in liquid nitrogen, using a freezing medium containing high molecular weight polymers, such as methylcellulose (MC) and/or polyvinylpyrollidone (PVP), as the cryoprotective agent (CPA) instead of DMSO. To this end, we investigated the post-freeze/thaw viability and apoptotic behaviour of SVF of adipose tissue frozen in 16 different media: (a) the traditional medium containing Dulbecco's modified Eagle's medium (DMEM) with 80% fetal calf serum (FCS) and 10% DMSO; (b) DMEM with 80% human serum (HS) and 10% DMSO; (c) DMEM with 0%, 2%, 4%, 6%, 8% or 10% DMSO; (d) DMEM with 1% MC and 10% of either HS or FCS or DMSO; (e) DMEM with 10% PVP and varying concentrations of FCS (0%, 10%, 40% or 80%); (f) DMEM with 10% PVP and 10% HS. Approximately 1 ml (106 cells/ml) of SVF cells were frozen overnight in a -80 °C freezer and stored in liquid nitrogen for 2 weeks before being rapidly thawed in a 37 °C water bath (1-2 min agitation), resuspended in culture medium and seeded in separate wells of a six-well plate for a 24 h incubation period at 37 °C. After 24 h, the thawed samples were analysed by brightfield microscopy and flow cytometry. The results suggest that the absence of DMSO (and the presence of MC) significantly increases the fraction of apoptotic and/or necrotic SVF cells. However, the percentage of viable cells obtained with 10% PVP and DMEM was comparable with that obtained in freezing medium with DMSO and serum (HS or FCS), i.e. ∼54 ± 14% and ∼63 ± 10%, respectively. Adipogenic and osteogenic differentiation behaviour of the frozen thawed cells was also assessed, using histochemical staining. Our results suggest that post-thaw SVF cell viability and adipogenic and osteogenic differentiability can be maintained even when they are frozen in the absence of serum and DMSO but with 10% PVP in DMEM. Copyright © 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.


Biffi E.,Bioengineering Laboratory | Beretta E.,IRCCS E. Medea | Fave M.D.,IRCCS E. Medea | Brunati F.,IRCCS E. Medea | And 5 more authors.
ACM International Conference Proceeding Series | Year: 2015

Improving walking ability is one of the main goals of a rehabilitation procedure. New technologies based on Virtual Reality (VR) has been recently flanked standard therapies. In this study, 4 children suffering from acquired brain injury (ABI) underwent a 5 session treatment with the Gait Real-time Analysis Interactive Lab (GRAIL), to improve walking and balance ability. The GRAIL is an instrumented multi-sensor platform based on immersive virtual reality for gait training and rehabilitation in engaging VR environments, which has been included in few studies to evaluate gait patterns in normal and disabled people and to improve gait in adults. Results are promising: improvements were recorded at the ankle level, selectively at the affected side, and at the pelvic level, thus improving the walking pattern symmetry. Small changes were measured at the hip and knee joints, which were already comparable to healthy subjects. These results suggest that a longer intervention may be even more effective. In the next future more children will be enrolled to strongly prove the effectiveness of GRAIL in the rehabilitation of children with ABI. © 2015 ACM.


Alloni A.,University of Pavia | Lanzola G.,University of Pavia | Triulzi F.,Neuroradiology Unit | Bellazzi R.,University of Pavia | Reni G.,Bioengineering Laboratory
Proceedings of the Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, EMBS | Year: 2015

The Colibri project is introduced, whose aim is setting up a shared database of Magnetic Resonance images concerning pediatric patients affected by neurological rare disorders. The project involves 19 Italian centers of excellence in pediatric neuro-radiology and is supported by the nationwide coordinating center for the Information and Communication Technology research infrastructure. After the first year devoted to the design and the implementation, in November 2014 the system finally went into service at the centers involved in the project. This paper illustrates the initial assessment of the user perception and provides some preliminary statistics about its use. © 2015 IEEE.


Coelli S.,Polytechnic of Milan | Sclocco R.,Polytechnic of Milan | Barbieri R.,Harvard University | Reni G.,Bioengineering Laboratory | And 2 more authors.
Proceedings of the Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, EMBS | Year: 2015

This paper investigates the relation between mental engagement level and sustained attention in 9 healthy adults performing a Conners' 'not-X' continuous performance test (CPT), while their electroencephalographic (EEG) activity was simultaneously acquired. Spectral powers were estimated and extracted in the classical EEG frequency bands. The engagement index (β/α) was calculated employing four different cortical montages suggested by the literature. Results show the efficacy of the estimated measures in detecting changes in mental state and its correlation with subject reaction times throughout the test. Moreover, the influence of the recording sites was proved underling the role of frontal cortex in maintaining a constant sustained attention level. © 2015 IEEE.


Wilczek P.M.,Bioengineering Laboratory | Zembala M.,Silesian Medical University | Mzyk A.,Bioengineering Laboratory | Cichon T.,Center of Oncology of Poland | Smolarczyk R.,Center of Oncology of Poland
Kardiochirurgia i Torakochirurgia Polska | Year: 2013

Background: Specific cardiac stem cells/progenitor cells (CSCs/CPCs) are multipotent and clonogenic, giving rise to cardiomyocytes, smooth muscle cells and endothelial cells. These cells can be used in cell therapy for the treatment of diseased heart tissue, but there is a need for an effective isolation process, and characterization of the phenotype and morphology of the isolated cells, to increase the potential therapeutic use of this type of cells. Aim of the study: The aim of this study was to isolate the CSCs/CPCs from the tissue fragments derived from explanted heart, and characterize the phenotype and morphology of the isolated cells. Material and methods: Myocardial tissue samples were taken from explanted hearts under sterile conditions. After the cells had grown to confluence, they were detached by gentle enzymatic digestion and seeded on poly-D-lysine-coated dishes. Using flow cytometry methods the phenotype of the isolated cells was analyzed. Applying phase contrast and fluorescent microscopy techniques the morphology of the cells and growth characteristics were evaluated. Results: The isolated cells showed the CSCs/CPCs phenotype expressing the c-kit receptor, Nkx 2.5, MDR-1, and GATA-4. The cells were also positive for mesenchymal stem cell receptors including CD90, CD105, CD73 and CD144. Only a few cells were positive for the Lin-1, Lin-2 and Lin-3 receptors. The growth characteristics and cell morphology differ depending on the place of isolation. Conclusions: The CSCs/CPCs seems to have a great therapeutic potential, but there is a need for a full description of phenotype, morphology and growth characteristics.

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