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Prato allo Stelvio - Prad am Stilfser Joch, Italy

Pacini S.,University of Florence | Morucci G.,University of Florence | Branca J.J.V.,University of Florence | Aterini S.,Prato Hospital | And 3 more authors.
Nutrients | Year: 2013

Cardiovascular diseases are more prevalent in patients with chronic kidney disease than in the general population and they are considered the leading cause of death in patients with end-stage renal disease. The discovery that vitamin D3 plays a considerable role in cardiovascular protection has led, in recent years, to an increase in the administration of therapies based on the use of this molecule; nevertheless, several studies warned that an excess of vitamin D3 may increase the risk of hypercalcemia and vascular calcifications. In this study we evaluated the effects of vitamin D3, and of its selective analog paricalcitol, on immature cardiomyocytes. Results show that vitamin D3 induces cAMP-mediated cell proliferation and significant intracellular calcification. Paricalcitol, however, induces cell differentiation, morphological modifications in cell shape and size, and no intracellular calcification. Furthermore, vitamin D3 and paricalcitol differently affect cardiomyoblasts responses to acetylcholine treatment. In conclusion, our results demonstrate that the effects of vitamin D3 and paricalcitol on cardiomyoblasts are different and, if these in vitro observations could be extrapolated in vivo, they suggest that paricalcitol has the potential for cardiovascular protection without the risk of inducing intracellular calcification. © 2013 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. Source


Guarneri V.,University of Modena and Reggio Emilia | Miles D.,Mount Vernon Cancer Center | Robert N.,U.S. Oncology | Dieras V.,University Pierre and Marie Curie | And 6 more authors.
Breast Cancer Research and Treatment | Year: 2010

Long-term bisphosphonate therapy is associated with increased risk of osteonecrosis of the jaw (ONJ). In a retrospective analysis, a 16% ONJ incidence was reported in patients receiving bisphosphonates with anti-angiogenic therapy (bevacizumab or sunitinib) for bone metastases from breast, colon, or renal cell cancers. To assess ONJ incidence with bevacizumab, we analysed data from 3,560 patients receiving bevacizumab-containing therapy for locally recurrent or metastatic breast cancer (LR/MBC) in two double-blind, randomised trials (AVADO and RIBBON-1) and a large, non-randomised safety study (ATHENA). The overall incidence of ONJ with bevacizumab was 0.3% in the blinded phase of the two randomised trials and 0.4% in the single-arm study. There was a trend towards increased ONJ incidence in patients who received bisphosphonate therapy versus those with no bisphosphonate exposure (0.9 vs. 0.2%, respectively, in the pooled analysis of the randomised trials; 2.4 vs. 0%, respectively, in ATHENA). In conclusion, this is the largest analysis of ONJ in patients receiving bevacizumab for LR/MBC. The 0.3-0.4% incidence is considerably lower than previously suggested with anti-angiogenic therapy in a small retrospective analysis. The risk of ONJ appeared to be increased in patients exposed to bisphosphonates, a pattern consistent with observations before the introduction of anti-angiogenic therapy to breast cancer management. The 0.9-2.4% incidence seen in bisphosphonate-exposed patients receiving bevacizumab is within the 1-6% range reported for bisphosphonates alone. Good oral hygiene, dental examination, and avoidance of invasive dental procedures remain important in patients receiving bisphosphonates, irrespective of bevacizumab administration. © 2010 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. Source


Gremese E.,Catholic University of the Sacred Heart | Carletto A.,University of Verona | Padovan M.,University of Ferrara | Atzeni F.,University of Milan | And 11 more authors.
Arthritis Care and Research | Year: 2013

Objective Obesity is a mild, long-lasting inflammatory disease and, as such, could increase the inflammatory burden of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). The study aim was to determine whether obesity represents a risk factor for a poor remission rate in RA patients requiring anti-tumor necrosis factor α (anti-TNFα) therapy for progressive and active disease despite treatment with methotrexate or other disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs. Methods Patients were identified from 15 outpatient clinics of university hospitals and hospitals in Italy taking part in the Gruppo Italiano di Studio sulle Early Arthritis network. Disease Activity Score in 28 joints (DAS28), body mass index (BMI; categorized as <25, 25-30, and >30 kg/m2), acute-phase reactants, IgM rheumatoid factor, and anti-cyclic citrullinated peptide antibody values were collected. DAS28 remission was defined as a score of <2.6 lasting for at least 3 months. Results Six hundred forty-one outpatients with longstanding RA receiving anti-TNFα blockers (adalimumab, n = 260; etanercept, n = 227; infliximab, n = 154), recruited from 2006-2009 and monitored for at least 12 months, were analyzed. The mean ± SD DAS28 at baseline was 5.6 ± 1.4. A BMI of >30 kg/m2 was recorded in 66 (10.3%) of 641 RA patients. After 12 months of anti-TNFα treatment, a DAS28 of <2.6 was noted in 15.2% of the obese subjects, in 30.4% of the patients with a BMI of 25-30 kg/m2, and in 32.9% of the patients with a BMI of <25 kg/m2 (P = 0.01). The lowest percentage of remission, which was statistically significant versus adalimumab and etanercept (P = 0.003), was observed with infliximab. Conclusion Obesity represents a risk factor for a poor remission rate in patients with longstanding RA treated with anti-TNFα agents. A personalized treatment plan might be a possible solution. Copyright © 2013 by the American College of Rheumatology. Source


De Luca G.,University of Piemonte Orientale | Bellandi F.,Prato Hospital | Huber K.,Wilhelminen Hospital | Noc M.,University of Ljubljana | And 9 more authors.
Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis | Year: 2011

Background: Even although time to treatment has been shown to be a determinant of mortality in primary angioplasty, the potential benefits are still unclear from early pharmacological reperfusion by glycoprotein (Gp) IIb-IIIa inhibitors. Therefore, the aim of this meta-analysis was to combine individual data from all randomized trials conducted on upstream as compared with late peri-procedural abciximab administration in primary angioplasty. Methods: The literature was scanned using formal searches of electronic databases (MEDLINE and EMBASE) from January 1990 to December 2010. All randomized trials on upstream abciximab administration in primary angioplasty were examined. No language restrictions were enforced. Results: We included a total of seven randomized trials enrolling 722 patients, who were randomized to early (n=357, 49.4%) or late (n=365, 50.6%) peri-procedural abciximab administration. No difference in baseline characteristics was observed between the two groups. Follow-up data were collected at a median (25th-75th percentiles) of 1095days (720-1967). Early abciximab was associated with a significant reduction in mortality (primary endpoint) [20% vs. 24.6%; hazard ratio (HR) 95% confidence interval (CI)=0.65 (0.42-0.98) P=0.02, P het=0.6]. Furthermore, early abciximab administration was associated with a significant improvement in pre-procedural thrombolysis in myocardial infarction (TIMI) 3 flow (21.6% vs. 10.1%, P<0.0001), post-procedural TIMI 3 flow (90% vs. 84.8%, P=0.04), an improvement in myocardial perfusion as evaluated by post-procedural myocardial blush grade (MBG) 3 (52.0% vs. 43.2%, P=0.03) and ST-segment resolution (58.4% vs. 43.5%, P<0.0001) and significantly less distal embolization (10.1% vs. 16.2%, P=0.02). No difference was observed in terms of major bleeding complications between early and late abciximab administration (3.3% vs. 2.3%, P=0.4). Conclusions: This meta-analysis shows that early upstream administration of abciximab in patients undergoing primary angioplasty for ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) is associated with significant benefits in terms of pre-procedural epicardial re-canalization and ST-segment resolution, which translates in to significant mortality benefits at long-term follow-up. © 2011 International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis. Source


Cantini F.,Rheumatology Unit | Niccoli L.,Rheumatology Unit | Nannini C.,Rheumatology Unit | Kaloudi O.,Rheumatology Unit | And 3 more authors.
Biologics: Targets and Therapy | Year: 2012

Purpose: To evaluate the long-term efficacy of infliximab in patients with refractory Behçet's disease (BD)-associated and idiopathic posterior uveitis (PU). Methods: Single center, prospective, 6-year duration, follow-up study on 50 consecutive patients (20 [40%] males and 30 [60%] females with a mean age of 37.5 ± 12.3 years) with refractory BD-associated PU (36 patients) and idiopathic PU (14 patients) who had failed at least one immunosuppressive drug. At baseline, patients received prednisone 1 mg/kg/day with rapid tapering and infliximab infusions (5 mg/kg) at weeks 0, 2, 6, and every 8 weeks thereafter. Nonresponders after the third infusion withdrew from the study. Primary outcome measures were visual acuity (VA) value improvement compared to baseline. Secondary outcome measures were proportion of patients with VA improvement from baseline; proportion of patients achieving disease remission; number of PU fare-ups; and incidence of adverse events. Results: At the final follow-up, mean right and left eye VA respectively increased from 0.57 ± 0.31 at baseline to 0.68 ± 0.33 (P = 0.048) and from 0.67 ± 0.28 to 0.76 ± 0.27 (P = 0.047). None of the patients had VA worsening and new onset ocular complications. A complete response of PU was recorded in 34/50 (68%) patients and partial response in 11/50 (22%). Five patients were nonresponders and withdrew from the study after the third infusion. A significant reduction of ocular attacks and of the proportion of patients with cystoid macular edema was observed. No differences in infliximab efficacy was recorded between patients with BD-associated and idiopathic PU. No serious adverse events occurred. The mean follow-up duration was 36.8 months. Conclusion: Long-term infliximab therapy was equally effective and safe with a significant VA gain in refractory BD-associated and idiopathic PU. © 2012 Cantini et al. Source

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