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Fidenza, Italy

Rossi S.,University of Parma | Baruffi S.,University of Parma | Corradi D.,University of Parma | Callegari S.,Vaio Hospital | And 5 more authors.
Journal of Biological Research (Italy) | Year: 2014

Cardiovascular disease increases with age as well as alterations of cardiac electrophysiological properties, but a detailed knowledge about changes in cardiac electrophysiology relevant to arrhythmogenesis in the elderly is relatively lacking. The aim of this study was to determine specific age-related changes in electrophysiological properties of the ventricles which can be related to a structural-functional arrhythmogenic substrate. Multiple epicardial electrograms were recorded on the ventricular surface of in vivo control and aged rats, while arrhythmia vulnerability was investigated by premature stimulation protocols. Single or multiple ectopic beats and sustained ventricular arrhythmias were frequently induced in aged but not in control hearts. Abnormal ventricular activation patterns during sinus rhythm and unchanged conduction velocity during point stimulation in aged hearts suggest the occurrence of impaired impulse conduction through the distal Purkinje system that might create a potential reentry substrate. © S. Rossi et al., 2014.

Rossi S.,University of Parma | Baruffi S.,University of Parma | Callegari S.,Vaio Hospital | Carnevali L.,University of Parma | And 6 more authors.
Journal of Biological Research (Italy) | Year: 2014

Previously, we observed that a single low-intensity premature ventricular stimulation could occasionally induce spontaneous ectopic beats in normal rat hearts. Possible hypothesis for the arrhythmia is that a premature beat can encounter a zone of conduction block to initiate reentry. However, enhanced dispersion of repolarization, a necessary condition for initiation of reentry, is unlikely to be present in normal myocardium. Thus, the main objective of the present study was to perform detailed pace mapping measurements in normal ventricular myocardium with a view to identify pacing sites and critical coupling intervals which could induce spontaneous ectopic beats and to characterize the reentrant circuits. © S. Rossi et al., 2014.

Corradi D.,University of Parma | Callegari S.,Vaio Hospital | Manotti L.,University of Parma | Ferrara D.,University of Milan | And 12 more authors.
Heart Rhythm | Year: 2014

Background The extent to which atrial myocardium is remodeled in patients with persistent lone atrial fibrillation (LAF) is largely unknown. Objective The purpose of this study was to perform a clinicopathologic investigation in patients with persistent LAF. Methods We characterized structural and molecular remodeling in atrial biopsies from 19 patients (17 males, mean age 49 years) with persistent (>7 days; n = 8) or long-lasting persistent (>1 year; n = 11) LAF who underwent surgical ablation. Atrial tissue from 15 autopsy samples without clinicopathologic evidence of heart disease served as controls. Results Morphometric analysis showed cardiomyocyte hypertrophy and greater amounts of myolytic damage and interstitial fibrosis in persistent LAF patients compared to controls (P <.0001). Atrial tissue levels of heme oxygenase-1 and 3-nitrotyrosine were increased in persistent LAF patients (P <.001), consistent with oxidative stress. Levels of superoxide dismutase-2, interleukin-8, interleukin-10, tumor necrosis factor-α, and thiobarbituric acid reactive substance were greater in controls than in persistent LAF patients. Immunoreactive signal for connexin43 was reduced more frequently in persistent LAF patients than controls. There was no correlation between features of structural or molecular remodeling and clinical parameters, including persistent LAF duration. Conclusion In persistent LAF patients, the atria are modified by structural remodeling and molecular changes of oxidative stress. Tissue changes in persistent LAF appear to occur early after its onset and are qualitatively no different than those observed in patients with atrial fibrillation related to conventional risk factors. These findings suggest that different types of atrial fibrillation are associated with the same spectrum of tissue lesions. Early intervention to restore sinus rhythm in persistent LAF patients may prevent irreversible tissue change, especially interstitial fibrosis. © 2014 Heart Rhythm Society.

Vaglio A.,University of Parma | Mancini C.,University of Parma | Chierici E.,Vaio Hospital | Cobelli R.,University of Parma | And 5 more authors.
American Journal of Transplantation | Year: 2010

Central nervous system (CNS) lymphoma is a rare posttransplant lymphoproliferative disorder (PTLD), which usually has a poor outcome. To date, no specific conditions predisposing to this complication have been identified. We here describe the case of a renal transplant patient who was initially diagnosed as having Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-associated leukoencephalopathy and ultimately developed EBV-positive CNS lymphoma. The patient was a young lady who, 2 years after transplantation, presented with focal neurological and electroencephalographic abnormalities and diffuse white matter lesions on brain magnetic resonance imaging. EBV-DNA was detected in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) by polymerase chain reaction. After acyclovir therapy and immunosuppressive drug tapering, the symptoms and electroencephalographic abnormalities subsided, and EBV-DNA disappeared from the CSF. Ten years later, a bulky cerebral mass was found. After excision, a diagnosis of EBV-positive, Hodgkin-like monomorphic B-cell PTLD was made. This case illustrates the potential pathophysiological relationships between EBV infection, leukoencephalopathy and CNS lymphoma; although a long time elapsed from the initial neurological illness to CNS lymphoma, a link between these two conditions cannot be excluded. Therefore, a careful long-term follow-up of EBV-related encephalopathy is advisable. © 2010 The American Society of Transplantation and the American Society of Transplant Surgeons.

Pedretti G.,Vaio Hospital | Giuri P.G.,S. Anna Hospital | Chesi G.,Magati Hospital | Civardi G.,Hospital of Val dArda | And 3 more authors.
Italian Journal of Medicine | Year: 2014

The article reports the results of an observational study conducted in 53 internal medicine departments of the Emilia Romagna region based on the answers to 54 questions administered in a questionnaire, submitted electronically, based on the type of center (large >250 beds, small <250 beds), laboratory equipment, management aspects, pharmacological and clinical/economic aspects and use of antibiotics in the empirical treatment of severe infections. The result is a snapshot of the existing situation which shows a substantial availability of resources and a good level of expertise in the field of infectious disease management, despite some areas still need improvement. It also highlights some differences in terms of procedures amongst large hospitals, where infectious diseases are treated by an ad hoc specialized staff, and the small ones, where the internist is generally involved, being responsible for both direct management of severe infections and giving advice to other departments (emergency or surgery). It emerged that, both in small and large hospitals, more discussion and continuous assessment are needed to apply the appropriate protocols based on reference checklists. ©Copyright G. Pedretti et al., 2014.

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