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BioMed, Volume 4, Issue 2 (June 2024) – 10 articles

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18 pages, 1807 KiB  
Article
Enhancing Prostate and Bladder Cancer Treatment: Exploring the Synergistic Potential of Entecavir and 5-Fluorouracil Combinations
by Tânia Lourenço, Lara Marques, Eduarda Ribeiro and Nuno Vale
BioMed 2024, 4(2), 185-202; https://doi.org/10.3390/biomed4020015 - 14 Jun 2024
Viewed by 336
Abstract
Prostate and bladder cancer treatments have several challenges, including intense side effects and mechanisms of resistance. Thus, it is urgent to find drugs that can fill these gaps. For this purpose, Entecavir (ETV) was tested alone and in combination with 5-Fluorouracil (5-FU). Prior [...] Read more.
Prostate and bladder cancer treatments have several challenges, including intense side effects and mechanisms of resistance. Thus, it is urgent to find drugs that can fill these gaps. For this purpose, Entecavir (ETV) was tested alone and in combination with 5-Fluorouracil (5-FU). Prior to this, a preliminary computational analysis was conducted to evaluate the combination of these two drugs. After exposing PC-3 and UM-UC-5 cells to the drugs, cell morphology was assessed using a microscope, while cell viability, proliferation, and cytotoxicity were evaluated using the MTT assay, and finally, the statistical analysis was performed. It was concluded that ETV showed significant cytotoxic effects in the PC-3 cells, and 5-FU, although not as effective as in other tumor types, it managed to inhibit the viability of the PC-3 cells. The combination of 5-FU with ETV after 72 h of exposure is an advantageous association, surpassing the results of each drug alone. In the UM-UC-5 cells, ETV alone did not produce the expected effect, neither did the combination. Nevertheless, repurposing ETV has proven to be an effective strategy in PC, especially through its combination with 5-FU. Full article
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14 pages, 2422 KiB  
Article
Customized Lattice Structures Tailored to Mimic Patients’ Bone Anisotropic Properties and Microarchitecture for Joint Reconstruction Applications
by Ahmed Sherif El-Gizawy, Xuewei Ma, Joshua C. Arnone and Ammar A. Melaibari
BioMed 2024, 4(2), 171-184; https://doi.org/10.3390/biomed4020014 - 13 Jun 2024
Viewed by 85
Abstract
Existing implants used with Total Knee Arthroplasty (TKA), Total Hip Arthroplasty (THA), and other joint reconstruction treatments, have displayed premature failures and frequent needs for revision surgery in recent years, particularly with young active patients who represent more than 55% of all joint [...] Read more.
Existing implants used with Total Knee Arthroplasty (TKA), Total Hip Arthroplasty (THA), and other joint reconstruction treatments, have displayed premature failures and frequent needs for revision surgery in recent years, particularly with young active patients who represent more than 55% of all joint reconstruction patients. Bone cement and stress shielding have been identified as the major reasons for premature joint failures. A breakdown of the cement may happen, and revision surgery may be needed because of the aseptic loosening. The significant mismatch of stiffness properties of patient trabecular bones and metallic implant materials in joint reconstruction surgery results in the stress shielding phenomenon. This could lead to significant bone resorption and increased risk of bone fracture and the aseptic loosening of implants. The present project introduces an approach for development of customized cellular structures to match the mechanical properties and architecture of human trabecular bone. The present work aims at fulfilling the objectives of the introduced approach by exploring new designs of customized lattice structures and texture tailored to mimic closely patients’ bone anisotropic properties and that can incorporate an engineered biological press-fit fixation technique. The effects of various lattice design variables on the mechanical performance of the structure are examined through a systematic experimental plan using the statistical design of experiments technique and analysis of variance method. All tested lattice designs were explored under realistic geometrical, biological, and manufacturing constraints. Of the four design factors examined in this study, strut thickness was found to have the highest percent contribution (41%) regarding the structure stiffness, followed by unit cell type, and cell size. Strut shape was found to have the lowest effect with only 11% contribution. The introduced solution offers lattice structure designs that can be adjusted to match bone stiffness distribution and promote bone ingrowth and hence eliminating the phenomenon of stress shielding while incorporating biological press-fit fixation technique. Full article
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15 pages, 1748 KiB  
Article
Comprehensive Analysis of the Genetic Variation in the LPA Gene from Short-Read Sequencing
by Raphael O. Betschart, Georgios Koliopanos, Paras Garg, Linlin Guo, Massimiliano Rossi, Sebastian Schönherr, Stefan Blankenberg, Raphael Twerenbold, Tanja Zeller and Andreas Ziegler
BioMed 2024, 4(2), 156-170; https://doi.org/10.3390/biomed4020013 - 4 Jun 2024
Viewed by 277
Abstract
Lipoprotein (a) (Lp(a)) is a risk factor for cardiovascular diseases and mainly regulated by the complex LPA gene. We investigated the types of variation in the LPA gene and their predictive performance on Lp(a) concentration. We determined the Kringle IV-type 2 (KIV-2) copy [...] Read more.
Lipoprotein (a) (Lp(a)) is a risk factor for cardiovascular diseases and mainly regulated by the complex LPA gene. We investigated the types of variation in the LPA gene and their predictive performance on Lp(a) concentration. We determined the Kringle IV-type 2 (KIV-2) copy number (CN) using the DRAGEN LPA Caller (DLC) and a read depth-based CN estimator in 8351 short-read whole genome sequencing samples from the GENESIS-HD study. The pentanucleotide repeat in the promoter region was genotyped with GangSTR and ExpansionHunter. Lp(a) concentration was available in 4861 population-based subjects. Predictive performance on Lp(a) concentration was investigated using random forests. The agreement of the KIV-2 CN between the two specialized callers was high (r = 0.9966; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.9965–0.9968). Allele-specific KIV-2 CN could be determined in 47.0% of the subjects using the DLC. Lp(a) concentration can be better predicted from allele-specific KIV-2 CN than total KIV-2 CN. Two single nucleotide variants, 4925G>A and rs41272114C>T, further improved prediction. The genetically complex LPA gene can be analyzed with excellent agreement between different callers. The allele-specific KIV-2 CN is more important for predicting Lp(a) concentration than the total KIV-2 CN. Full article
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10 pages, 202 KiB  
Review
Assistive Communication Devices in Rett Syndrome: A Case Report and Narrative Review
by Justin Lee, Jessica Lee, Mouath Abu-Daoud and Yazan A. Al-Ajlouni
BioMed 2024, 4(2), 146-155; https://doi.org/10.3390/biomed4020012 - 27 May 2024
Viewed by 280
Abstract
Rett syndrome (RTT) is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder primarily affecting females, characterized by developmental regression and significant communication impairments. Despite the critical role of communication in maintaining quality of life, the long-term efficacy and optimal utilization of augmentative and assistive communication (AAC) devices [...] Read more.
Rett syndrome (RTT) is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder primarily affecting females, characterized by developmental regression and significant communication impairments. Despite the critical role of communication in maintaining quality of life, the long-term efficacy and optimal utilization of augmentative and assistive communication (AAC) devices in RTT remain underexplored. This study evaluates the impact of AAC devices on communication outcomes and quality of life in individuals with RTT through a case report and narrative review. We conducted a comprehensive literature review and thematic analysis categorizing technologies into communication aids, mobility aids, educational tools, and daily living aids, assessing their effectiveness and challenges. The results show that AAC technologies, including eye-tracking devices, speech-generating devices, and adapted computers, enhance communication, cognitive development, and quality of life for individuals with RTT. The case report of Patient E, utilizing the Tobii Dynavox device, highlights the transformative impact of AAC devices despite challenges in device complexity and therapist training. AAC devices are indispensable for supporting individuals with RTT, though challenges persist related to accessibility, device complexity, and therapist training. Future research should focus on longitudinal studies to assess the sustained impact of AAC technologies and explore family-centered approaches to AAC integration. Full article
10 pages, 8780 KiB  
Brief Report
Manual Reduction for Subacute Osteoporotic Burst and Severe Compression Thoracolumbar Fractures
by Kung-Chia Li, Ching-Hsiang Hsieh, Ting-Hua Liao and Chih-Hung Chen
BioMed 2024, 4(2), 136-145; https://doi.org/10.3390/biomed4020011 - 24 May 2024
Viewed by 266
Abstract
The objective of this study was to retrospectively assess the impact of manual reduction (MR) on patients with subacute osteoporotic thoracolumbar burst fractures and severe compression fractures (OTLBFSCFs). From January 2016 to May 2020, 101 cases of OTLBFSCFs were reviewed, comprising 73 women [...] Read more.
The objective of this study was to retrospectively assess the impact of manual reduction (MR) on patients with subacute osteoporotic thoracolumbar burst fractures and severe compression fractures (OTLBFSCFs). From January 2016 to May 2020, 101 cases of OTLBFSCFs were reviewed, comprising 73 women and 28 men, with an average age of 77.4 ± 8.5 years. Preoperative radiographs, CT or MRI scans, intraoperative C-arm fluoroscopic images, and postoperative X-ray films were utilized to evaluate spinal radiographic parameters. Initially, all patients underwent 3 min of prone positioning as posture reduction (PR), followed by 1–3 sessions of six-member MR to approximate anatomical reduction of the fracture. The average preoperative anterior body height ratio (ABH%) and lateral Cobb angle (LCA) were 38.8% ± 6.2% and 22.6° ± 4.2°, respectively. Post-PR, the average ABH% and LCA were 50.5% ± 8.0% and 14.7° ± 2.7°, respectively. Following MR, the average ABH% and LCA were 99.6% ± 2.4% and 0.4° ± 2.4°, respectively. PR achieved an ABH% correction of 11.7%, while MR achieved 49.1%. LCA restoration was 7.9° with PR and 14.3° with MR. It was deduced that MR proved to be safe and efficacious for subacute OTLBFSCFs and could potentially alter the approach to subsequent surgeries. Full article
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14 pages, 774 KiB  
Review
Review of Laboratory Testing and Biomarker Screening for Preeclampsia
by Antonia F. Oladipo and Maansi Jayade
BioMed 2024, 4(2), 122-135; https://doi.org/10.3390/biomed4020010 - 14 May 2024
Viewed by 542
Abstract
The purpose of this review is to elucidate the different laboratory and biomarker testing methods available for screening and diagnosis of preeclampsia. These include routine testing, such as blood pressure readings, qualitative and quantitative urine testing, complete blood count with platelets, serum creatinine [...] Read more.
The purpose of this review is to elucidate the different laboratory and biomarker testing methods available for screening and diagnosis of preeclampsia. These include routine testing, such as blood pressure readings, qualitative and quantitative urine testing, complete blood count with platelets, serum creatinine levels, liver chemistries, and serum bilirubin levels. This review also details the use of non-routine testing, such as screening for angiogenic and anti-angiogenic markers, such as placental growth factor (PlGF) and soluble fms-like tyrosine kinase-1 (sFlt-1). Blood pressure measurements and proteinuria are the most routinely used screening tools used for preeclampsia and there are limited data on the utility of other screening techniques because of a greater focus on the etiology and treatment of preeclampsia. Similarly, serum angiogenic biomarkers are not routinely collected, so there is limited evidence regarding using them as screening tools for preeclampsia and more data are needed to determine their significance in the screening and diagnosis of preeclampsia. Full article
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10 pages, 1086 KiB  
Brief Report
Foot Position Recognition Using a Smartphone Inertial Sensor in Patient Transfer
by Kodai Kitagawa, Ryo Takashima, Tadateru Kurosawa and Chikamune Wada
BioMed 2024, 4(2), 112-121; https://doi.org/10.3390/biomed4020009 - 25 Apr 2024
Viewed by 450
Abstract
Caregivers experience lower back pain due to patient transfer. Foot position is an important and adjustable posture for reducing lumbar loads during patient transfer. Specifically, a suitable foot position provides the use of the lower limbs instead of the lumbar region in patient [...] Read more.
Caregivers experience lower back pain due to patient transfer. Foot position is an important and adjustable posture for reducing lumbar loads during patient transfer. Specifically, a suitable foot position provides the use of the lower limbs instead of the lumbar region in patient handling. Thus, we have developed a monitoring and feedback system for foot positioning using wearable sensors to instruct suitable foot positions. However, existing measurement methods require multiple specific wearable sensors. In addition, the existing method has not been evaluated in patient transfer, including twisting and lowering. Thus, the objective of this study was to develop and evaluate a measurement method using only a smartphone-installed inertial sensor for foot position during patient transfer, including twisting and lowering. The smartphone attached to the trunk measures the acceleration, angular velocity, and geomagnetic field. The proposed method recognizes anteroposterior and mediolateral foot positions by machine learning using inertial data. The proposed method was tested using simulated patient transfer motions, including horizontal rotation. The results showed that the proposed method could recognize the two foot positions with more than 90% accuracy. These results indicate that the proposed method can be applied to wearable monitoring and feedback systems to prevent lower back pain caused by patient transfer. Full article
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12 pages, 2821 KiB  
Technical Note
Implementing A Flexible Sensor to Identify Forces during Instrument-Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization
by Nickolai J. P. Martonick, Russell T. Baker and Craig P. McGowan
BioMed 2024, 4(2), 100-111; https://doi.org/10.3390/biomed4020008 - 16 Apr 2024
Viewed by 493
Abstract
Instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilization (IASTM) techniques use specialized hand-held instruments for applying controlled mechanical forces to the body with the goal of facilitating healing, improving range of motion, and reducing pain. Nevertheless, an optimal range of forces for achieving clinical outcomes has yet [...] Read more.
Instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilization (IASTM) techniques use specialized hand-held instruments for applying controlled mechanical forces to the body with the goal of facilitating healing, improving range of motion, and reducing pain. Nevertheless, an optimal range of forces for achieving clinical outcomes has yet to be established. A barrier to advancing research on IASTM force optimization is the lack of commercially available instruments that quantify treatment forces. The aim of the current study was to assess the feasibility of attaching a flexible force sensor to a commercially available IASTM instrument to obtain valid force measurements. The validity of this novel approach was assessed by comparing data between the flexible force sensor and a force plate during a simulated treatment. Intraclass correlation coefficients, linear regression models, and Bland Altman plots all indicated excellent agreement between the force plate and flexible sensor when the instrument was used at 45°, 65°, and 90° treatment angles. Agreement between measures decreased when the instrument was held at 30°. Thus, commercially available instruments with attached sensors could make force measurement more accessible and feasible for a wider range of research settings, facilitating the advancement of IASTM research and ultimately informing clinical decision-making to improve patient care. Full article
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11 pages, 725 KiB  
Article
Form Matters—Technical Cues in the Single Leg Heel Raise to Failure Test Significantly Change the Outcome: A Study of Convergent Validity in Australian Football Players
by Brady Green, Molly Coventry, Tania Pizzari, Ebonie K. Rio and Myles C. Murphy
BioMed 2024, 4(2), 89-99; https://doi.org/10.3390/biomed4020007 - 7 Apr 2024
Viewed by 956
Abstract
Practitioners routinely use the single leg heel raise (SLHR) to quantify calf function in healthy and injured populations. Despite this, approaches vary and the impact of cueing on SLHR performance and results interpretation in athletesis unknown. The primary aim of this study was [...] Read more.
Practitioners routinely use the single leg heel raise (SLHR) to quantify calf function in healthy and injured populations. Despite this, approaches vary and the impact of cueing on SLHR performance and results interpretation in athletesis unknown. The primary aim of this study was to quantify the level of agreement of the cued versus non-cued SLHR tests. The secondary aim was to explore test outcomes and the potential impact of intrinsic factors. Cued and non-cued SLHR tests were conducted in fifty-one Australian football players (23 women, 28 men). Metronome pacing (60 bpm) and five key cues were included in the cued condition. The level of agreement (Bland–Altman) between tests was measured for capacity (repetitions to failure) and asymmetry. Data from 100 legs were included. The non-cued and cued SLHR tests demonstrated poor agreement in both capacity and asymmetry. More repetitions to failure were performed in the non-cued SLHR [Mean (SD) = 33.9 (10.3) vs. 21.9 (5.3), p < 0.001)], and men had greater capacity (36.8 (10.4) vs. 30.3 (9.2), p < 0.001). During the cued SLHR, older players (age ≥ 30 years: −5.1 repetitions, p = 0.01) and Indigenous players (−3.4 repetitions, p = 0.002) and had reduced calf muscle function. Cueing the SLHR test significantly changes the result—outcomes are not comparable or interchangeable with the commonly used non-cued SLHR. These findings can guide practitioners quantifying calf capacity. Full article
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11 pages, 718 KiB  
Article
Resilience and Sense of Coherence among Female Fibromyalgia Patients Living in a Conflict Zone Who Underwent Fibrotherapy Intervention
by Liraz Cohen-Biton, Dan Buskila and Rachel Nissanholtz-Gannot
BioMed 2024, 4(2), 78-88; https://doi.org/10.3390/biomed4020006 - 22 Mar 2024
Viewed by 580
Abstract
Objective: This study sought to examine whether the sense of coherence (SoC) and resilience among female fibromyalgia (FM) patients increased after participation in a fibrotherapy intervention program (FTI) and whether SoC and resilience increased among female FM patients (FFMPs) exposed to security threats [...] Read more.
Objective: This study sought to examine whether the sense of coherence (SoC) and resilience among female fibromyalgia (FM) patients increased after participation in a fibrotherapy intervention program (FTI) and whether SoC and resilience increased among female FM patients (FFMPs) exposed to security threats who changed their coping strategies to problem-oriented coping. Methods: Ninety-six FFMPs aged 19–75 enrolled in the FTI program led by Rabbi Firer in Sderot, Israel. The intervention program is divided into three stages, each comprising a distinct weekly treatment plan. The treatment plans encompass the following modalities: physiotherapy adapted to FM conditions, group therapy, hydrotherapy, horticultural therapy/cooking therapy, Pilates, pottery therapy, and kundalini yoga. Each stage spans a duration of 10 weeks, culminating in a total program duration of 30 weeks. Results: The findings show that after participating in FTI, the problem-orientation level of coping and health indicators, including functional ability and physiological scores (pre- and post-exertion), increased while psychological distress levels decreased. Overall, all the physiological scales measured before and after the FTI showed a significant improvement among the entire sample. FFMPs with problem-oriented strategies reported higher levels of SoC and resilience after participating in the FTI program. Conclusions: The FTI provided FFMPs with tools to understand the meaning of their disease and its management, whereas before they were preoccupied with the presence of the disease and its negative impact on their lives. The participation of FFMPs in the FTI leads to a perceptual change, the adoption of problem-oriented coping strategies, and the increased utilization of coping resources, namely, SoC and resilience. Problem-oriented coping combined with high SoC and resilience led FFMPs to adopt health strategies such as physical activity and other empowering activities that raised their physical and mental health indicators. Full article
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