Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health

Zagreb, Croatia

Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health

Zagreb, Croatia
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Liscic R.M.,Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health | Breljak D.,Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health
Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry | Year: 2011

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a fatal disorder of motor neuron degeneration with unclear etiology and no effective treatment to date. ALS is, however, increasingly recognized as a multisystem disorder associated with impaired cognition. The overlap between ALS and dementia at clinical, genetic and neuropathologic levels indicates a spectrum of clinical phenotypes that may include features of frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD). Most cases of ALS are sporadic (SALS), but approximately 10% of all ALS cases are familial ALS (FALS). Mutations in the Cu/Zn superoxide dismutase-1 gene (SOD-1) occur in about 20% of FALS cases. Mutations in the TAR DNA-binding protein 43 gene (TARDBP or TDP-43) may occur in 3-4% of FALS cases, and less frequently, in FTLD. Recently, mutations in the fused in sarcoma/translation in liposarcoma gene (FUS/TLS) were identified as causing about 4-5% of FALS, SALS, and FTLD cases, but not SOD-1 ALS cases, indicating a pathogenic role of FUS, together with TDP-43, in possibly all types of ALS, except for SOD-1 linked ALS. TDP-43 and FUS have striking structural and functional similarities, most likely implicating altered RNA processing as a major event in ALS pathogenesis. Thus, TARDBP and FUS/TLS mutations define a novel class of neurodegenerative diseases called TDP-43- and FUS. -proteinopathies, in which both misfolded proteins are novel targets for the development of therapeutics in this spectrum of diseases. However, SOD-1 linked ALS may have a pathogenic pathway distinct from other types of ALS. © 2010 Elsevier Inc.


Tariba B.,Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health
Biological Trace Element Research | Year: 2011

Metals in wine can originate from both natural and anthropogenic sources, and its concentration can be a significant parameter affecting consumption and conservation of wine. Since metallic ions have important role in oxide-reductive reactions resulting in wine browning, turbidity, cloudiness, and astringency, wine quality depends greatly on its metal composition. Moreover, metals in wine may affect human health. Consumption of wine may contribute to the daily dietary intake of essential metals (i.e., copper, iron, and zinc) but can also have potentially toxic effects if metal concentrations are not kept under allowable limits. Therefore, a strict analytical control of metal concentration is required during the whole process of wine production. This article presents a critical review of the existing literature regarding the measured metal concentration in wine, methods applied for their determination, and possible sources, as well as their impact on wine quality and human health. The main focus is set on aluminum, arsenic, cadmium, chromium, copper, iron, manganese, nickel, lead, and zinc, as these elements most often affect wine quality and human health. © Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011.


Prester L.,Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health
Food Additives and Contaminants - Part A Chemistry, Analysis, Control, Exposure and Risk Assessment | Year: 2011

Fish, cephalopods and shellfish provide a healthy source of high-quality proteins, essential vitamins, minerals and polyunsaturated fatty acids. The beneficial effects of fish consumption on human health such as protection against coronary heart disease and certain cancer may be offset by fish decomposition and the formation of chemical contaminants such as biogenic amines. There are several toxicological effects of biogenic amines on humans, especially histamine. It is the causative agent of histamine or scombroid fish poisoning which is a significant public health problem. In individuals with diminished histamine detoxification, ingestion of even a low or moderate histamine- or tyramine-containing fish may lead to food intolerance. Biogenic amines such as putrescine, tyramine and cadaverine can potentiate histamine toxicity. Furthermore, dietary polyamine intake should be minimised in some cancer patients. Besides their potential toxicity, biogenic amines are used for the evaluation of hygienic quality of different marine and freshwater species. Spoilage pattern and biogenic amine formation are species specific. Histamine has been traditionally used as an indicator of the quality of histidine-rich fish (dark-muscle fish). On the other hand, putrescine and cadaverine are the most objective indicators of quality of histidine-poor fish (white-muscle fish), shellfish and fermented seafood products. © 2011 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.


Bobic J.,Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health
Arhiv za Higijenu Rada i Toksikologiju | Year: 2012

It is generally agreed that personality variables have a relatively consistent influence on the subjective estimation of different situations in everyday life and the way people react to them. The aim of this review was to summarise our previously published findings on the relationship between subjective estimation of one's quality of life and the personality trait neuroticism-emotional stability. We used the WHO Quality of Life - BREF or SF-36 questionnaires for the assessment of the quality of life, Cornell Index for the assessment of neuroticism, and The Social Readjustment Rating Scale for the evaluation of common stressors. Our results have shown that more emotionally stable participants (lower neuroticism) perceive their life better in quality and are more satisfied with their work environment. In addition, our results support the findings from other studies that women have higher neuroticism and lower quality of life scores than men.


Petrinec B.,Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health
Radiation protection dosimetry | Year: 2010

Natural radioactivity of Middle-Adriatic Sea islands and islets was measured. Gamma spectrometric measurements, both in situ and in laboratory, as well as radon measurements in the seawater were performed. Activity concentrations and the associated dose rates due to naturally occurring (232)Th, (238)U and (40)K radioisotopes were determined. Dose rates calculated from in situ gamma spectrometry are in correlation with dose rates calculated from activity concentrations measured in collected samples of pebbles and rocks. In situ gamma ray spectrometry in the seawater has been performed, showing activity concentration of 220 and 240 Bq m(-3) for (214)Bi and (214)Pb, respectively due to the presence of magmatic rocks in the seabed. The radium equivalent activity varied from 13 to 53 Bq kg(-1). These values are lower than the limit values, indicating that the radiation hazard is not significant. The highest mean activity concentrations of naturally occurring radionuclides in rock samples collected were found on the islands of magmatic origin.


Mantovani A.,Instituto Superiore Of Sanita | Fucic A.,Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health
Reproductive Toxicology | Year: 2014

Puberty is the developmental window when the final maturation of body systems is orchestrated by hormones; lifelong sex-related differences and capacity to interact with the environment are defined during this life stage. Increased incidence in a number of chronic, multifactorial diseases could be related to environmental exposures during puberty: however, insight on the susceptibility of the peripubertal period is still limited. The estrogen/androgen balance is a crucial axis in harmonizing the whole pubertal development, pointing out the significance of exposures to endocrine disruptors. Besides the reproductive system, endocrine-related perturbations may affect the maturation of skeleton, adipose tissues, brain, immune system, as well as cancer predisposition. Thus, risk assessment of environmental stressors should duly consider specific aspects of the pubertal window. Besides endocrine-related mechanisms, suggested research priorities include signaling molecules (e.g., kisspeptins, dopamine) as xenobiotic targets and disturbances of specific pubertal methylation processes potentially involved in neurobehavioral disorders and cancer risk in adulthood. © 2013 Elsevier Inc.


Prester L.,Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health
Journal of the American College of Nutrition | Year: 2015

Seafood allergies have been increasing their presence in the last 2 decades. Allergic reactions to seafood can range from mild urticarial and oral allergy syndrome to life-threatening anaphylactic reactions. Ingestion of seafood infested with Anisakis larvae can cause a disease known as anisakiasis with symptoms similar to true seafood allergy. Furthermore, some adverse reactions to seafood including histamine fish poisoning (HFP), and intolerance to histamine can trigger clinical symptoms, which, although nonallergic in origin, are similar to true immunoglobulin E (IgE)-mediated allergic reactions. Because seafood allergy usually remains a lifelong food allergy, this review focuses on the current knowledge on fish and shellfish allergens and emphasizes the importance of differentiating seafood allergy from other allergy-like reactions (anisakiasis, HFP, and intolerance to histamine). Key teaching points: • Fish and shellfish are potent allergens that can provoke serious IgE antibody-mediated adverse reactions in sensitive individuals. • Sensitization to seafood allergens can be achieved by ingestion, inhalation, or skin contact. • Shellfish major allergen, tropomyosin, shares significant homology to arthropods (dust mites and cockroaches). • Accidental exposures to seafood products cross-contaminated with fish or shellfish allergens (hidden allergens) during processing may present a health risk for sensitive individuals. • Allergens of fish parasite A. simplex present common hidden allergens in seafood, particularly in raw and undercooked home-made fish dishes. • Symptoms caused by HFP, histamine intolerance, and anisakiasis are similar to true seafood allergy. 2015 © American College of Nutrition Published by Taylor & Francis Group, LLC


Komorsky-Lovric S.,Ruder Boskovic Institute | Novak I.,Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health
Electrochimica Acta | Year: 2013

Microparticles of flavonoids myricetin and dihydromyricetin are measured by cyclic and square-wave voltammetry. The first electrode reaction of both compounds is reversible, two-electrons, two-protons oxidation of pyrogallol group with E7 = 0.300 V vs. NHE. This makes them as potent antioxidants as quercetin. The second and the third electrode reactions are irreversible, one-electron, one-proton oxidations of hydroxyl groups. The results demonstrate that the applied technique is useful for the measurement of solid state reactivity of antioxidants. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Gajski G.,Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health | Garaj-Vrhovac V.,Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health
Environmental Toxicology and Pharmacology | Year: 2013

Melittin (MEL) is a major peptide constituent of bee venom that has been proposed as one of the upcoming possibilities for anticancer therapy. Recent reports point to several mechanisms of MEL cytotoxicity in different types of cancer cells such as cell cycle alterations, effect on proliferation and/or growth inhibition, and induction of apoptotic and necrotic cell death trough several cancer cell death mechanisms, including the activation of caspases and matrix metalloproteinases. Although cytotoxic to a broad spectrum of tumour cells, the peptide is also toxic to normal cells. Therefore its therapeutic potential cannot be achieved without a proper delivery vehicle which could be overcome by MEL nanoparticles that possess the ability to safely deliver significant amount of MEL intravenously, and to target and kill tumours. This review paper summarizes the current knowledge and brings latest research findings on the anticancer potential of this lytic peptide with diverse functions. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.


Prester L.,Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health
Arhiv za Higijenu Rada i Toksikologiju | Year: 2011

Humid indoor environments may be colonised by allergenic filamentous microfungi (moulds), Aspergillus spp., Penicillium spp., Cladosporium spp., and Alternaria spp. in particular. Mould-induced respiratory diseases are a worldwide problem. In the last two decades, mould allergens and glucans have been used as markers of indoor exposure to moulds. Recently, mould allergens Alt a 1 (Alternaria alternata) and Asp f 1 (Aspergillus fumigatus) have been analysed in various environments (residential and occupational) with enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays, which use monoclonal or polyclonal antibodies. Household Alt a 1 and Asp f 1 levels were usually under the limit of the method detection. By contrast, higher levels of mould allergens were found in environments with high levels of bioaerosols such as poultry farms and sawmills. Data on allergen Alt a 1 and Asp f 1 levels in agricultural settings may provide information on possible colonisation of respective moulds and point out to mould-related diseases in occupants.

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