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Taipei, Taiwan

Tsai M.-C.,Cathy General Hospital | Wu J.-Y.,Taipei Medical University | Lin H.-C.,Taipei Medical University Hospital | Chen T.-H.,Depratment of Internal Medicine | And 5 more authors.
Current Nanoscience | Year: 2012

Kinesin motor proteins can hydrolyze ATP and unidirectionally transport specific cargo molecules along microtubule tracks (MTs). Engineering scientists interested in nanotechnology have used kinesin and MTs to build shuttles of 2 geometries. In the bead geometry, the kinesin shuttles transport cargos along the MTs. In the gliding geometry, cargos are carried by MTs, which glide on a kinesin lawn. To realize the goal of building in vitro protein shuttles with real utilities, the issue of how to allow the shuttles specifically, yet easily, to transport the designated cargos has not been completely resolved. Popular methods, such as non-specific bead attachments, or biotinylation of tubulin subunits by covalent tagging with reactive chemicals, have limitations. In this study, we focus on developing a bead geometry protein shuttle to transport specific DNA. Because numerous DNA-binding proteins must form homodimers to bind DNA, we created kinesin fusion proteins KIF5-cro proteins. These proteins were made by genetically fusing the tail of a truncated kinesin with the cro protein, which is a DNA-binding protein derived from the λ bacteriophage. We showed that the resultant kinesin fusion proteins transport DNA with specificity and high affinity (K d 60 nM). This study provides a discussion on the plausible approaches of applying the recombinant DNA technology to the shuttles of the gliding geometry. © 2012 Bentham Science Publishers. Source

Shih M.-L.,Tri Service General Hospital | Duh Q.-Y.,University of California at San Francisco | Hsieh C.-B.,Tri Service General Hospital | Liu Y.-C.,Tri Service General Hospital | And 4 more authors.
World Journal of Surgery | Year: 2010

Background: We investigated the analgesic efficacy of bilateral superficial cervical plexus block in patients undergoing thyroidectomy and to determine whether it reduces the adverse effects of general anesthesia. Methods: We prospectively recruited 162 patients who underwent elective thyroid operations from March 2006 to October 2007. They were randomly assigned to receive a bilateral superficial cervical block (12 ml per side) with isotonic saline (group A; n = 56), bupivacaine 0.5% (group B; n = 52), or levobupivacaine 0.5% (group C; n = 54) after induction of general anesthesia. The analgesic efficacy of the block was assessed with: intraoperative anesthetics (desflurane), numbers of patients needing postoperative analgesics, the time to the first analgesics required, and pain intensity by visual analog scale (VAS). Postoperative nausea and vomiting (PONV) for 24 h were also assessed by the "PONV grade." We also compared hospital stay, operative time, and discomfort in swallowing. Results: There were no significant differences in patient characteristics. Each average end-tidal desflurane concentration was 5.8, 3.9, and 3.8% in groups A, B, and C, respectively (p<0.001).Fewer patients in groups B and C required analgesics (A: B: C = 33:8:7; p>0.001), and it took longer before the first analgesic dose was needed postoperatively (group A: B: C = 82.1:360.8:410.1 min; p<0.001).Postoperative pain VAS were lower in groups B and C for the first 24 h postoperatively (p<0.001). Incidences of overall and severe PONV were lower, however, there were not sufficient numbers of patients to detect differences in PONV among the three groups. Hospital stay was shorter in group B and group C (p = 0.011). There was no significant difference in operative time and postoperative swallowing pain among the three groups. Conclusions: Bilateral superficial cervical plexus block reduces general anesthetics required during thyroidectomy. It also significantly lowers the severity of postoperative pain during the first 24 h and shortens the hospital stay. © The Author(s) 2010. This article is published with open access at Springerlink.com. Source

Lin H.-C.,Taipei Medical University Hospital | Lin H.-C.,Taipei Veterans General Hospital | Pai S.-F.,Taipei Veterans General Hospital | Pai S.-F.,National Yang Ming University | And 5 more authors.
Journal of the Formosan Medical Association | Year: 2011

Background/Purpose: Isolation of teeth with rubber dams is an important procedure for infection control in dentistry, especially in endodontic treatment. This study surveyed the prevalence of rubber dam usage in nonsurgical root canal treatment (RCT) by dentists under the National Health Insurance system in Taiwan. Methods: A total of 1,332 completed RCT cases were randomly selected from a large database from the Bureau of National Health Insurance in Taiwan in 2004. The radiographs and dental charts of the selected cases were evaluated for the prevalence of rubber dam usage in RCT. The frequencies of rubber dam usage for RCT by dentists were compared between hospitals and private dental clinics and among six different regions in Taiwan. Results: The overall prevalence of rubber dam usage for RCT by dentists under the National Health Insurance system in Taiwan was 16.5%. The frequency of rubber dam usage for RCT by dentists in hospitals (32.8%) was significantly higher than that (10.3%) in private dental clinics (p < 0.0001). However, there was no significant difference in the frequency of rubber dam usage for RCT by dentists among six different geographic regions in Taiwan. Conclusion: The prevalence of rubber dam usage for RCT by dentists in Taiwan is relatively low. Because rubber dam isolation of an endodontically-treated tooth can provide better infection control, increase patient protection, and improve treatment efficiency, there is an urgent need to advise dentists in Taiwan to use rubber dams for every RCT case. © 2011 Elsevier & Formosan Medical Association. Source

Hsu F.-H.,National Taiwan University | Chen H.-I.H.,University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio | Tsai M.-H.,National Taiwan University | Lai L.-C.,National Taiwan University | And 4 more authors.
BMC Research Notes | Year: 2011

Background: Circular Binary Segmentation (CBS) is a permutation-based algorithm for array Comparative Genomic Hybridization (aCGH) data analysis. CBS accurately segments data by detecting change-points using a maximal-t test; but extensive computational burden is involved for evaluating the significance of change-points using permutations. A recent implementation utilizing a hybrid method and early stopping rules (hybrid CBS) to improve the performance in speed was subsequently proposed. However, a time analysis revealed that a major portion of computation time of the hybrid CBS was still spent on permutation. In addition, what the hybrid method provides is an approximation of the significance upper bound or lower bound, not an approximation of the significance of change-points itself. Results: We developed a novel model-based algorithm, extreme-value based CBS (eCBS), which limits permutations and provides robust results without loss of accuracy. Thousands of aCGH data under null hypothesis were simulated in advance based on a variety of non-normal assumptions, and the corresponding maximal-t distribution was modeled by the Generalized Extreme Value (GEV) distribution. The modeling results, which associate characteristics of aCGH data to the GEV parameters, constitute lookup tables (eXtreme model). Using the eXtreme model, the significance of change-points could be evaluated in a constant time complexity through a table lookup process. Conclusions: A novel algorithm, eCBS, was developed in this study. The current implementation of eCBS consistently outperforms the hybrid CBS 4× to 20× in computation time without loss of accuracy. Source codes, supplementary materials, supplementary figures, and supplementary tables can be found at http://ntumaps.cgm.ntu.edu.tw/eCBSsupplementary. © 2011 Hsu et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Source

Yang C.-P.,Armed Forces TaoYuan General Hospital | Cherng C.-H.,National Defense Medical Center | Wu C.-T.,National Defense Medical Center | Huang H.-Y.,Graduate Institute of Medical science | And 3 more authors.
Anesthesia and Analgesia | Year: 2013

BACKGROUND:: Glutamate homeostasis and microglia activation play an important role in the development and maintenance of neuropathic pain. We designed this investigation to examine whether ultra-low dose naloxone administered alone or in combination with morphine could alter the concentration of the excitatory amino acids (EAAs) glutamate and aspartate, as well as the expression of tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and its receptors (TNFR1 and TNFR2) in the spinal cord dorsal horn of rats with partial sciatic nerve transection (PST). METHODS:: Male Wistar rats underwent intrathecal catheter implantation for drug delivery and were divided in 7 groups: sham-operated + saline (sham), PST + saline (S), PST + 15 ng naloxone (n), PST + 15 μg naloxone (N), PST + 10 μg morphine (M), PST + 15 ng naloxone + 10 μg morphine (Mn), PST + 15 μg naloxone + 10 μg morphine (MN). Thermal withdrawal latency and mechanical withdrawal threshold, TNF-α and TNFR expression in the spinal cord and dorsal root ganglia, and EAAs glutamate and aspartate concentration in cerebrospinal fluid dialysates were measured. RESULTS:: Ten days after PST, rats developed hyperalgesia (P < 0.0001) and allodynia (P < 0.0001), and increased TNF-α (P < 0.0001) and TNFR1 expression (P = 0.0009) were measured in the ipsilateral spinal cord dorsal horn. The antihyperalgesic and antiallodynic effects of morphine (10 μg) were abolished by high-dose naloxone (15 μg; P = 0.0031) but enhanced by ultra-low dose naloxone (15 ng; P = 0.0015), and this was associated with a reduction of TNF-α (P < 0.0001) and TNFR1 (P = 0.0009) expression in the spinal cord dorsal horn and EAAs concentration (glutamate: P = 0.0001; aspartate: P = 0.004) in cerebrospinal fluid dialysate. Analysis of variance (ANOVA) or Student t test with Bonferroni correction were used for statistical analysis. CONCLUSIONS:: Ultra-low dose naloxone enhances the antihyperalgesia and antiallodynia effects of morphine in PST rats, possibly by reducing TNF-α and TNFR1 expression, and EAAs concentrations in the spinal dorsal horn. Ultra-low dose naloxone may be a useful adjuvant for increasing the analgesic effect of morphine in neuropathic pain conditions. Copyright © 2013 International Anesthesia Research Society. Source

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