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Salisbury, United Kingdom

Thomas R.J.,Biomedical science
Bioengineered Bugs | Year: 2010

The specter of intentional release of pathogenic microbes and their toxins is a real threat. This article reviews the literature on adhesins of biothreat agents, their interactions with oligosaccharides and the potential for anti-adhesion compounds as an alternative to conventional therapeutics. The minimal binding structure of ricin has been well characterised and offers the best candidate for successful anti-adhesion therapy based on the Galβ1-4GlcNAc structure. The botulinum toxin serotypes A-F bind to a low number of gangliosides (GT1b, GQ1b, GD1a and GD1b) hence it should be possible to determine the minimal structure for binding. The minimal disaccharide sequence of GalNAcβ1-4Gal found in the gangliosides asialo-GM1 and asialo-GM2 is required for adhesion for many respiratory pathogens. Although a number of adhesins have been identified in bacterial biothreat agents such as Yersinia pestis, Bacillus anthracis, Francisella tularensis, Brucella species and Burkholderia pseudomallei, specific information regarding their in vivo expression during pneumonic infection is lacking. Limited oligosaccharide inhibition studies indicate the potential of GalNAcβ1-4Gal, GalNAcβ-3Gal and the hydrophobic compound, para-nitrophenol as starting points for the rational design of generic antiadhesion compounds. A cocktail of multivalent oligosaccharides based on the minimal binding structures of identified adhesions would offer the best candidates for anti-adhesion therapy. © 2010 Landes Bioscience. Source


De Almeida Mello J.,Biomedical science | Van Durme T.,Catholic University of Louvain | MacQ J.,Catholic University of Louvain | Declercq A.,Catholic University of Leuven
BMC Public Health | Year: 2012

Background: Older people usually prefer staying at home rather than going into residential care. The Belgian National Institute for Health and Disability Insurance wishes to invest in home care by financing innovative projects that effectively help older people to stay at home longer. In this study protocol we describe the evaluation of 34 home care projects. These projects are clustered according to the type of their main intervention such as case management, night care, occupational therapy at home and psychological/psychosocial support. The main goal of this study is to identify which types of projects have the most effect in delaying institutionalization of frail older persons. Methods/design. This is a longitudinal intervention study based on a quasi-experimental design. Researchers use three comparison strategies to evaluate intervention - comparison among different types of projects, comparisons between older persons in the projects and older persons not benefiting from a project but who are still at home and between older persons in the projects and older persons who are already institutionalized. Projects are asked to include clients who are frail and at risk of institutionalization. In the study we use internationally validated instruments such as the interRAI Home Care instrument, the WHO-QOL-8 and the Zarit Burden Interview-12. These instruments are filled out at baseline, at exit from the project and 6 months after baseline. Additionally, caregivers have to do a follow-up every 6 months until exit from the project. Criteria to exit the cohort will be institutionalization longer than 3 months and death. The main analysis in the study consists of the calculation of incidence rates, cumulative incidence rates and hazard rates of definitive institutionalization through survival analyses for each type of project. Discussion. This research will provide knowledge on the functional status of frail older persons who are still living at home. This is important information to identify determinants of risk for institutionalization. The identification of effective home care projects in delaying institutionalization will be useful to inform and empower home care providers, policy and related decision makers to manage and improve home care services. © 2012 De Almeida Mello et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Source


Oyston P.,Biomedical science | Robinson K.,University of Nottingham
Journal of Medical Microbiology | Year: 2012

Vaccine development has played a hugely important role in combating infectious disease. Despite this success, there is still a great need for new vaccines and these are emerging far more slowly than we would wish. Despite the massive expansion in understanding of immune responses to infection, research is often hindered by a lack of understanding of the immune responses required specifically for protection, or by a lack of approved adjuvants and delivery systems to induce the required responses. In addition, the financial commitment required to license new vaccines is significant, and the more lucrative markets are often not those with the greatest need. In this review, we discuss many of the hurdles that new vaccines must overcome in order to reduce morbidity and mortality, and some of the initiatives that are being attempted to supply new vaccines to those that need them most. © 2012 Crown Dstl. Source


Kirkman E.,Biomedical science | Watts S.,Biomedical science
Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences | Year: 2011

Lung injuries, predominantly arising from blast exposure, are a clinical problem in a significant minority of current military casualties. This special feature consists of a series of articles on lung injury. This first article examines the mechanism of the response to blast lung (primary blast injury to the lung). Subsequent articles examine the incidence of blast lung, clinical consequences and current concepts of treatment, computer (in silico) modelling of lung injury and finally chemical injuries to the lungs. Blast lung is caused by a shock wave generated by an explosion causing widespread damage in the lungs, leading to intrapulmonary haemorrhage. This, and the ensuing inflammatory response in the lung, leads to a compromise in pulmonary gas exchange and hypoxia that can worsen over several hours. There is also a characteristic cardio-respiratory effect mediated via an autonomic reflex causing apnoea (or rapid shallow breathing), bradycardia and hypotension (the latter possibly also due to the release of nitric oxide). An understanding of this response, and the way it modifies other reflexes, can help the development of new treatment strategies for this condition and for the way it influences the patient's response to concomitant injuries. © 2011 The Royal Society. Source


El-Sherbiny I.M.,Center for Materials Science | El-Shibiny A.,Biomedical science | Salih E.,Center for Materials Science
Journal of Photochemistry and Photobiology B: Biology | Year: 2016

This study reports the photo-induced green synthesis and antimicrobial assessment of poly(ϵ-caprolactone)/curcumin/grape leaf extract-Ag hybrid nanoparticles (PCL/Cur/GLE-Ag NPs). PCL/Cur/GLE NPs were synthesized via emulsion-solvent evaporation in the presence of PVA as a capping agent, then used as active nano-supports for the green synthesis and stabilization of AgNPs on their surfaces. Both Cur and GLE were selected and incorporated into the PCL nano-supports due to their reported promising antimicrobial activity that would further enhance that of the synthesized AgNPs. The developed PCL/Cur/GLE NPs and PCL/Cur/GLE-Ag hybrid NPs were characterized using UV-visible spectrophotometry, high resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM) and X-ray diffraction (XRD). HRTEM images showed that the PCL/Cur/GLE NPs are monodispersed and spherical with size of about 270 nm, and the AgNPs were formed mainly on their surfaces with average size in the range 10-30 nm. The synthesized AgNPs were found to be crystalline as shown by XRD patterns with fcc phase oriented along the (111), (200), (220) and (311) planes. The antimicrobial characteristics of the newly developed NPs were investigated against gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria in addition to two fungal strains. The results demonstrated that the PCL/Cur/GLE-Ag hybrid NPs have a potential antimicrobial activity against pathogenic bacterial species and could be considered as an alternative antibacterial agent. © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved. Source

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