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Finke C.,Carl von Ossietzky University | Postnova S.,University of Sydney | Postnova S.,The Woolcock Institute of Medical Research | Rosa E.,Illinois State University | And 5 more authors.
European Physical Journal: Special Topics | Year: 2010

We study a physiologically realistic implementation of internal stochasticity in a four-dimensional Hodgkin-Huxley type model of mammalian cold receptors. We show that in a deterministically tonic firing regime, this stochasticity can drive the neuron into a state of complex bursting behaviour. An explanation of the mechanism behind this effect is given in terms of phase space dynamics. © 2010 EDP Sciences and Springer. Source

Zhong J.,University of Basel | Lardinois D.,University of Basel | Szilard J.,The Woolcock Institute of Medical Research | Tamm M.,University of Basel | Roth M.,University of Basel
Lung Cancer | Year: 2011

Pleural malignant mesothelioma is a rare but deadly tumour mainly induced by asbestos inhalation. Despite the ban of asbestos in 1990 in 52 countries, mesothelioma cases still increase worldwide. In pleural mesothelioma, p38 mitogen activated protein kinases (MAPK) have been suggested to play a major role in carcinogenesis and aggressiveness of tumours. The aim of this study was to determine the role of the different four p38 MAPK isoforms and their effect on proliferation together with the underlying signalling pathways in a rat pleural mesothelioma cell line. Rat pleural mesothelioma cells were stimulated with platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF)-BB and/or transforming growth factor beta (TGF)-β MAPK and transcription factor expression and activation was monitored in the cytosol and nucleus by immuno-blotting. Proliferation was determined by manual cell count and siRNAs were used to control MAPK and transcription factor expression and action. Only PDGF-BB, but not TGF-β1 induced proliferation via activated Erk1/2 and p38 MAPK. The p38α and δ isoforms were expressed in the cytosol, and upon activation p38δ translocated into the nucleus, while p38α remained in the cytosol. No other p38 isoform was expressed by rat mesothelioma cells. C/EBP-α was found in both the cytosol and the nucleus, while C/EBP-β was not expressed at all. PDGF-BB induced proliferation was suppressed by down-regulation of either Erk1/2, or p38δ MAPK, or C/EBP-α Furthermore, TGF-β inhibited PDGF-BB induced proliferation by interruption of p38 MAPK signalling. From this rat model, we conclude that in pleural mesothelioma, p38δ in C/EBP-α mediate proliferation and thus may represent new targets in mesothelioma therapy. © 2010 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. Source

King G.G.,The Woolcock Institute of Medical Research | King G.G.,University of Sydney | King G.G.,Cooperative Research Center for Asthma and Airways
Pulmonary Pharmacology and Therapeutics | Year: 2011

Medical imaging has been increasingly used in respiratory research due to the rapid and ongoing development of medical technology. Current imaging is almost entirely 3-dimensional and allows the measurement of structure and function, often both simultaneously. The information complements other measurement methods in airway research because imaging's greatest contributions are those of topographical information, direct visualisation of functional or structural change, sampling of the whole organ (in contrast to for example bronchoscopy) and potential for in vivo imaging in a repeated, prospective nature. Medical imaging modalities of high-resolution computed tomography (HRCT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), ultra-high resolution imaging, positron emission computed tomography (PET) and single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) are reviewed in relation to research in airways disease. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. Source

Coeytaux A.,The Interdisciplinary Center | Coeytaux A.,University of Geneva | Wong K.,The Royal Prince Alfred Hospital | Wong K.,The Woolcock Institute of Medical Research | And 5 more authors.
Australian Family Physician | Year: 2013

Background: Rapid eye movement (REM) sleep behaviour disorder (RBD) is a parasomnia characterised by loss of the usual muscle atonia that occurs during REM sleep, allowing patients to act out their dreams. Objective: This article aims to draw attention to RBD, allowing early recognition and treatment. Summary: As RBD patients are at high risk of hurting themselves and their bed partners while acting out their dreams, improving safety within the bedroom environment and treatment with exogenous melatonin or clonazepam are recommended. Longitudinal studies have shown that the onset of idiopathic RBD may be an early warning sign of specific neurodegenerative diseases. Source

Milne S.,The Woolcock Institute of Medical Research | Milne S.,University of Sydney | King G.G.,The Woolcock Institute of Medical Research | King G.G.,University of Sydney
Journal of Thoracic Disease | Year: 2014

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) involves a complex interaction of structural and functional abnormalities. The two have long been studied in isolation. However, advanced imaging techniques allow us to simultaneously assess pathological processes and their physiological consequences. This review gives a comprehensive account of the various advanced imaging modalities used to study COPD, including computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and the nuclear medicine techniques positron emission tomography (PET) and single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT). Some more recent developments in imaging technology, including micro-CT, synchrotron imaging, optical coherence tomography (OCT) and electrical impedance tomography (EIT), are also described. The authors identify the pathophysiological insights gained from these techniques, and speculate on the future role of advanced imaging in both clinical and research settings. © 2011 - 2014 Journal of Thoracic Disease. Source

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