Abstract: A dry sample of Nostoc commune from an organic farm in Pingtung city (Taiwan) was used to prepare polysaccharide-rich (NCPS) extract. The conditioned medium (CM) from NCPS-treated human peripheral blood (PB)-mononuclear cells (MNC) effectively inhibited the growth of human leukemic U937 cells and triggered differentiation of U937 monoblast cells into monocytic/macrophagic lines. Cytokine levels in MNC-CMs showed upregulation of granulocyte/macrophage-colony stimulatory factor and IL-1β and downregulation of IL-6 and IL-17 upon treatment with NCPS. Moreover, murine macrophage RAW264.7 cells treated with NCPS exhibited the stimulatory effects of nitric oxide and superoxide secretion, indicating that NCPS might activate the immunity of macrophages. Collectively, the present study demonstrates that NCPS from N. commune could be potentially used for macrophage activation and consequently inhibited the leukemic cell growth and induced monocytic/macrophagic differentiation.
Abstract: Dennettia tripetala (commonly known as Pepperfruit) is widely consumed by the inhabitants of West Africa due to its distinctive spicy taste. It is also used traditionally as a remedy for cough, fever, toothache, diabetes, and nausea. The highly nutritious fruit is rich in protein, carbohydrates, as well as the antioxidant vitamins A, C, and E. The plant possesses phytochemicals that have been shown to elicit antimicrobial, insecticidal, analgesic, and anti-inflammatory properties. The plant has also been shown to possess chemotherapeutic, antihyperglycemic, and antioxidant properties. In addition, D. tripetala finds application in food preservation and seasoning. This review is the first attempt to pool together scientific evidence for the ethnomedicinal uses of D. tripetala. A critique of the literature is provided, as well as suggestions for future studies that can pave the way for further discoveries on the medicinal effects of D. tripetala.
Abstract: A large number of drugs are introduced every year, and newer interactions between medications are increasingly reported. Clinically significant drug interactions can occur when two or more drugs are taken in combination. With the continuing increase in the list of drugs capable of interactions, detection of these interactions from prescriptions becomes more important to ensure effective patient care. The aim of this study is to identify the possible drug interactions in the prescriptions of diabetic inpatients and to make physicians aware of these interactions to prevent the occurrence of clinically adverse effects. In a specially designed and validated data entry format, data for the following criteria were collected: drugs prescribed, major drug class prescribed, pharmacological classification of the observed drug interaction, and frequently occurring drug interactions. All the possible drug interactions were identified and evaluated using standard drug interaction reference books and databases. During the study period, 50 prescriptions of diabetic inpatients were screened randomly. Out of these prescriptions, 35 (70%) prescriptions had at least one possible drug-drug interaction. The major classes of drugs causing interactions included cardiac drugs (92%), analgesic drugs (66%), antibiotic drugs (52%), antidiabetic drugs (26%), diuretic drugs (26%), and antipsychotic drugs (24%). This study showed that 34 (68%) of the above prescriptions had minor interactions, 33(66%) had moderate interactions, and 10 (20%) had severe interactions. Of these, the drugs prescribed specifically for diabetes caused only nine moderate interactions. Thus, screening of prescriptions by the clinical pharmacist will help to minimize clinical occurrence of major/severe drug interactions in diabetic patients.
Abstract: Cyclophosphamide (CP), a bifunctional alkylating agent used in chemotherapy has been reported to induce organ toxicity mediated by generation of reactive oxygen species and oxidative stress. Gallic acid (GA), a phenolic substance, is a natural antioxidant with proven free radical scavenging activity and offers protection against oxidative damage. This research study was designed to investigate the ameliorative effect of GA against CP-induced toxicity in rats. Twenty-five male Wistar rats (180–200 g) were randomized into five treatment groups: (A) control, (B) CP, 2 mg/kg body weight (b.w.), (C) pre-treatment with GA (20 mg/kg b.w.) for seven days followed by CP (2 mg/kg b.w.) for seven days, (D) co-treatment with GA (20 mg/kg b.w) and CP (2 mg/kg b.w.) for seven days, and (E) GA (20 mg/kg b.w.) for seven days. CP induced marked renal and hepatic damages as plasma levels of urea, creatinine, bilirubin and activities of AST, ALT, ALP and GGT were significantly elevated (p < 0.05) in the CP-treated group relative to control. In addition, hepatic levels of GSH, vitamin C and activities of SOD, catalase and GST significantly reduced in the CP-treated group when compared with control. This was accompanied with a significant increase in hepatic lipid peroxidation. The restoration of the markers of renal and hepatic damages as well as antioxidant indices and lipid peroxidation by pre- and co-treatment with GA clearly shows that GA offers ameliorative effect by scavenging the reactive oxygen species generated by CP. This protective effect may be attributed to the antioxidant property of gllic acid.
Abstract: Chikungunya virus (CHIKV) is an arthropod-borne alphavirus that causes febrile chikungunya fever (CHIKF) in humans. This disease is debilitating and characterized by acute fever onset and chronic incapacitating polyarthralgia. CHIKF pathogenesis remains poorly defined with no approved vaccines and therapies. Recent outbreaks in the Caribbean islands have elevated concerns over the possibility of a global pandemic. Tremendous efforts have been made to develop relevant mouse models to enable the study of infection and immunity against this viral disease. Among them, the more common C57BL/6 mouse model demonstrated the ability to recapitulate the symptoms shown in infected humans, including self-limiting arthritis, myositis, and tenosynovitis. This has facilitated the unraveling of some key factors involved in disease pathogenesis of CHIKF. However, the stark differences in immune response between humans and mouse models necessitate the development of an animal model with an immune system that is more genetically similar to the human system for a better representation. In this paper, we aim to uncover the limitations of the C57BL/6 model and discuss alternative mouse models for CHIKV research.
Abstract: Objectives: The objective of this work was to compare the efficacy of Maitland mobilization and conventional physical therapy on pain response, range of motion (ROM) and functional ability in patients with chronic low back pain due to lumbar spondylosis. Methods: A total sample of 30 subjects (40–70 years of age) with complaints of slow insidious onset of low back pain (LBP), with or without radiation not less than three months duration and decrease ROM were randomly assigned to: group-I, Maitland mobilization and lumbar stabilization exercises; group-II conventional physical therapy (traction, strengthening, stretching exercises.) and outcomes were assessed for dependent variables. Results: There is statically a significant difference between pre and post measurement readings with time (p = 0.00) and between groups (p < 0.05) with respect to pain and function, but, with respect to ROM readings, showed statistical significance with time (p = 0.00) and no significance between groups (p > 0.05), indicating manual therapy group-I is improving faster and better than conventional physical therapy group-II. Conclusion: Our results showed that manual therapy interventions are more effective in managing low back pain, and function and range of motion of the lumbar spine than conventional physical therapy treatment.