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Dali C.,Rigshospitalet | Hanson L.G.,Copenhagen University | Hanson L.G.,Technical University of Denmark | Barton N.W.,Shire Inc | And 3 more authors.

Background: Late infantile metachromatic leukodystrophy (MLD) is an autosomal recessive lysosomal storage disorder that causes severe demyelination of the nervous system. The neuronal metabolite N-acetylaspartate (NAA) serves as a source of acetyl groups for myelin lipid synthesis in oligodendrocytes and is known as a marker for neuronal and axonal loss. NAA and other metabolite levels measured by proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) correlate with performance of the brain in normal children. There is a need for sensitive measures of disease progression in patients with MLD to enable development of future treatments. Methods: A cross-section of 13 children with late infantile MLD were examined by proton MRS. Signals from NAA, total choline, and total creatine in the deep white matter were measured and correlated with the results of cognitive and motor function tests. Results: The NAA signal decreased as the disease process advanced. Motor function, measured by the Gross Motor Function Measure-88, varied from 13 (only head movement in the supine position) to 180 (able to walk) across the study cohort, demonstrating a wide range in functional status. Similarly, varied decreases were observed in cognitive function. We report strong positive correlations between standardized measures of motor and cognitive function and NAA levels in the deep white matter. Conclusions: We suggest that NAA levels could serve as a sensitive biomarker in children with MLD. Proton MRS may provide a valuable tool for measuring the effects of treatment interventions in this disorder. Copyright © 2010 by AAN Enterprises, Inc. Source

Gattuso A.,Istituto Superiore di Sanita | Gianfranceschi M.V.,Istituto Superiore di Sanita | Sonnessa M.,Istituto Superiore di Sanita | Delibato E.,Istituto Superiore di Sanita | And 5 more authors.
International Journal of Food Microbiology

The aim of this study was to optimize a Real-Time PCR protocol for a rapid detection of Listeria monocytogenes in pork meat, using reduced volumes of primary selective enrichment broth and times of incubation to decrease the cost and time for analysis. Forty-five samples of pork meat were artificially contaminated with two different levels of L. monocytogenes (1-10. CFU per sample and 10-100. CFU per sample), homogenized in three different volumes of Half Fraser Broth (1:3; 1:5 and 1:10) and incubated at 30. °C. ±. 1. °C for 5. h, 8. h and 24. h. The detection was conducted in parallel by Real-Time PCR and the ISO standard 11290-1 methods. L. monocytogenes was detected in all the samples after 24. h by Real-Time PCR method, also using reduced volumes of Half Fraser Broth. This represents a clear advantage as the time to final detection and the inherent costs were significantly reduced compared to the ISO reference method. All samples artificially contaminated were correctly detected also after 8 of incubation at 30. °C. ±. 1. °C in Half Fraser Broth and 24. h in Fraser Broth at 37. °C. ±. 1. °C using cultural method. © 2014 Elsevier B.V. Source

Pugno N.,Polytechnic University of Turin | Pugno N.,National Institute of Nuclear Physics, Italy | Pugno N.,National Institute of Metrological Research | Lepore E.,Polytechnic University of Turin | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Adhesion

In this paper, we report experimental measurements of normal adhesive force versus body displacement for living Tokay geckos (Gekko gecko) adhered to Poly(methyl meth acrylate) (PMMA) or glass surfaces. We have measured the normal adhesive force needed for reaching the gecko detachment. Atomic force and scanning electron microscopies are used to characterize the surfaces and feet topologies. The measured safety factors (maximum adhesive force divided by the body weight) are 10.23 on PMMA surfaces or 9.13 on glass surfaces. We have observed minor and reversible damage of the gecko feet caused by our tests, as well as the self-renewal of the gecko adhesive abilities after the moult. Copyright © Taylor & Francis Group, LLC. Source

de Souza M.F.A.,DVM | Costa-e-Silva E.V.,Federal University of Mato Grosso do Sul | Macedo G.G.,Federal University of Mato Grosso do Sul | Soares B.D.,Brazilian National Council for Scientific and Technological Development | Zuccari C.E.S.N.,Federal University of Mato Grosso do Sul

Background: Poor semen quality of pedigree bulls has major economic implications in cattle breeding. Aims: To evaluate the effect of homeopathy on the semen of bulls with reproductive disorders. Methods: The behavioral, clinical and spermatic characteristics of four Nelore bulls were evaluated. The bulls received individualized homeopathic treatment mixed into the feed and administered once per day. Semen was collected using an artificial vagina. Successful collection, freezing, effective doses, and the number of doses of semen per collection were compared before and after homeopathic treatment. Results: The bulls were treated with Sulphur, Phosphorus, Lycopodium and Argentum nitricum all in 30CH dilution. The rates of successful collection were 97.14%, 100%, 96.67% and 30.77% pretreatment and 95.45%, 100%, 94.67% and 96.77% at post-treatment for bulls A, B, C and D, respectively. The average number of doses per ejaculate pre and post-treatment were 102.67 (SD 74.41) vs. 300.08 (SD 180.58), 0 vs. 234.78 (SD 96.12), 0 vs. 105.12 (SD 54.98), 0 ± vs. 107.37 (SD 52.12) respectively. Many of these differences were statistically significant. Conclusion: The use of homeopathy apparently improved the production of viable doses of semen from bulls with previous freezing problems and poor semen quality. Controlled studies should be conducted. © 2012 The Faculty of Homeopathy. Source

Benzoni G.,In Vivo NSA | Foresti F.,DVM | Archetti I.L.,Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale Lombardia Emilia Romagna | Coceva G.,GKL | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Animal Physiology and Animal Nutrition

The transfer of passive immunity from sows to piglets is important and it is the first immune protection of the new born piglet. Improving sows immunity by adding immuno-stimulating product in sows diet can positively affect colostrum composition and transfer of immune molecules to piglets. The aim of the current study is to evaluate the benefit of a different solution, made of specific fatty acids from marine origin that have been used in human medicine for decades, for sows and piglets. Two trials were conducted in commercial farm, involving 240 sows at different periods of the year. Sows were divided in a control group, without supplementation, and a test group, supplemented with the feed additive from the 90th day of gestation to weaning. Sows body condition, piglets viability and growth were recorded. Milk immunoglobulin content was measured, as well as Aujeszky antibodies in sows and piglets blood as marker of specific immunity, and blood bactericidal activity, complement activity and lysozyme as markers of non specific immunity. No effect of the product was observed on piglets zootechnical criteria and specific immunity parameters but significant improvement of piglet non specific immunity, was observed. No difference was observed neither in the piglets blood PRRSV and PCV2 antibodies and viruses nor in Aujeszky antibodies. Blood complement activity seems to be an accurate indicator of immuno-stimulating additive efficiency. Giving alkyl-glycerol fatty acids to sows in late gestation and lactation can improve the passive immunity transfer to piglets. © 2012 Blackwell Verlag GmbH. Source

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