P Cugini

Sapienza University of Rome, Roma, Latium, Italy

Are you P Cugini?

Claim your profile

Publications (254)242.66 Total impact

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Diabetes mellitus (DM) can be complicated by an involvement of Neurovegetative System (NVS), conventionally and non-invasively diagnosed by the means of Ewing's test and Heart Rate Variability (HRV) analysis. It is well known that the NVS is physiologically responsible, via biological clocks, for the regulation of Circadian Rhythms (CR) characterizing the majority of biological functions. Therefore, this study is aimed at investigating the CR of Heart Rate (HR) and Blood Pressure (BP) in DM, postulating that the diagnosis of Silent Cardiac Dysautonomia (SCD) could be facilitated by detecting anomalous rhythmometric changes, including the worse one, i.e., the lose of a CR. The study has been performed on 30 clinically healthy subjects (CHS), 10 patients with DM1 and 30 patients with DM2, who underwent an ambulatory BP monitoring (ABPM) collecting data equidistantly every 30 minutes, under standardized conditions of lifestyle. The group specific monitored values of systolic (S), diastolic (D) BP, as well as HR have been analyzed via: 1. a conventional analysis of their intradiem variability; 2. a chronobiometric analysis (Cosinor method) of their CR. The conventional analysis disclosed that in CHS, DM1 and DM2, both the HR and BP show an intradiem variability that is significant (p less than 0.001). The chronobiological analysis showed that in CHS and DM2, both the HR and BP show a significant CR (p less than 0.001), viceversa in DM1 HR is characterized by a non significant CR (p=0.124), notwithstanding that the SBP and DBP maintain a significant CR (p less than 0.001). The disappearance of HR CR in DM1 reveals the involvement of neurovegetative biological clock that selectively controls the HR CR, as it is demonstrated by the pathophysiological finding of an internal desynchronization between the HR and BP CR. The selective lose of HR CR in DM1 leads to conclude that the ABPM, along with its Cosinor analysis, might be a practical, repeatable, low cost, low risk technique for diagnosing the SCD, at least in DM1.
    La Clinica terapeutica 01/2010; 161(1):e1-10. · 0.33 Impact Factor
  • P Cugini
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In this article it is reported a historical-philosophical "excursus" on the schools of thought followed by science in order to provide the highest degree of truth to the knowledge of natural reality.
    La Clinica terapeutica 01/2009; 160(1):ep9-11. · 0.33 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Introduction: This study is a systematic revision of scientific articles regarding the epidemiological, clinical and therapeutic aspects of cardiomyopathy associated with celiac disease. Material and methods: 1193 adult cases of cardiomyopathy and 15890 clinically healthy control subjects have been scrutinized. Results: The prevalence of celiac disease in cardiomyopathy patients was found higher vs control (3.36 vs. 0.425%, P=0.004). The risk of association was 2-3 times higher than expected. Mean age a 42 years ejection fraction was 25%. A gluten free diet induced an improvement in cardiac performance. Conclusions: In patients with cardiomyopaty may be the real risk of a concomitant celiac disease. The study protocol is not able to provide inferences on the causeeffect relationship existing between two diseases. Gluten free diet can improve cardiac performance in patients with this association. In patients with cardiomyopathy, an appropriate screening of celiac disease should be routinely performed.
    Archives of Medical Science 02/2008; 4(2):103–107. · 1.89 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The scope of this study is to detect whether or not the entropy (E) circadian rhythm (CR) is maintained preserved in sinusal R-R intervals (SRRI), its loss being the expression of a transition to an indeterministic chaos in heart rate variability (HRV). The E of SRRI was estimated in 14 type I diabetic pregnant women (DPW) in the first trimester of an apparently uncomplicated gestation (7 patients - mean age = 30.3 +/- 4.1 y - without clinical and laboratory evidence of cardiac autonomic neuropathy, and 7 patients - mean age = 30.7 +/- 3.6 y - with positive tests for a cardiac dysautonomia). The E CR was studied via the single cosinor method, and summarized via the population-mean cosinor method. The E CR was found not to be preserved in both the investigated type I DPW, despite the occurrence of the SRRI CR. The loss of the E CR confirms that in type I DPW there is a transition to an indeterministic disorder in HRV due to the lack of an autocorrelated periodic chaos in cardiac pacing. Such an unphysiological neurovegetative regulation suggests a new silent cardiac dysautonomic syndrome, that we intend to call "minimum delirium cordis syndrome" (MDCS). Can the MDCS be regarded as a condition of cardiovascular risk? To answer this question, it seems justified to suggest that the study of the E CR should be added to the routine tests that are presently applied to clinical analysis of the Holter ECG, being the classic tests of linear analysis not methodologically suitable for detecting the indeterministic chaos of the MDCS.
    Acta cardiologica 07/2007; 62(3):257-64. · 0.61 Impact Factor
  • Acta Cardiologica - ACTA CARDIOL. 01/2007; 62(3):253-260.
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Not Available Bibtex entry for this abstract Preferred format for this abstract (see Preferences) Find Similar Abstracts: Use: Authors Title Return: Query Results Return items starting with number Query Form Database: Astronomy Physics arXiv e-prints
    Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 12/2006; 783(1):328 - 329. · 4.38 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy (IDCM) and coeliac disease (CD) are two pathological conditions which may lead, by different mechanisms, to malabsorption of various micronutrients, including carnitine, active in cardiac metabolism. The aim of the present investigation was primarily to evaluate differences in serum concentrations of total carnitine between IDCM patients and patients with IDCM associated with CD and then also to evaluate, in the latter, the effect of a gluten-free diet on serum concentrations of total carnitine. Serum carnitine was determined by enzymatic spectrophotometric assay in three groups of individuals: group A, 10 patients (5 males, 5 females), mean age 46.5+/-10.8 years, presenting isolated IDCM; group B, 3 patients (2 males, 1 female), mean age 34+/-8 years, with IDCM+CD; and group C, 10 healthy subjects (5 males, 5 females), mean age 38.6+/-11.1 years. All patients with IDCM belonged to class NYHA I-II. Mean concentrations of total serum carnitine in the group of patients with isolated IDCM (group A) were found to be lower than in the controls (group C). The concentrations in patients with IDCM associated with CD (group B) were lower than in the control group and also lower than in the isolated IDCM (group A). After 2 years on a gluten-free diet, patients presenting IDCM associated with CD showed a progressive increase in mean serum carnitine levels compared to values observed prior to the diet. Patients presenting IDCM associated with CD show a greater decrease in serum total carnitine levels than patients presenting the isolated form of IDCM. A gluten-free diet, in these patients, leads to a progressive increase in serum levels of this substance.
    Nutrition Metabolism and Cardiovascular Diseases 09/2005; 15(4):279-83. · 3.98 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The study estimates the unpredictable disorder (chaos) within the 24 h pattern of sinus R-R intervals (SRRI) in clinically healthy pregnant women (CHPW) and clinically healthy non-pregnant women (CHNPW), in order to evaluate the early gestational changes in neurovegetative cardiac pacing. SRRI were provided by the 24-h Holter ECG of 10 CHPW and 10 CHNPW. SRRI were investigated by descriptive conventional statistics by means of the Time and Frequency Domain Analysis, and subsequently, in their chaotic component by means of entropy analysis. Both the SRRI and entropy were tested via the Cosinor method to better decipher whether or not the periodic disorder in heart rate variability is modified in pregnancy as a result of a gestational tonic resetting of the cardiac sympatho-vagal regulation. Cosinor analysis documented that the circadian rhythm of both the SRRI and entropy were preserved in CHNPW and CHPW. However, the circadian rhythm of SRRI and entropy in CHPW exhibited a significantly decreased 24 h mean. Via the analysis of the rhythmicity of entropy, this study has documented that the chaos in the 24 h pattern of SRRI is less prominent in CHPW than in CHNPW. Such a reduction of level in the deterministic periodic chaos of heart rate variability provides evidence that, in early pregnancy, a tonic elevation of the sympathetic activity regulates cardiac pacing.
    Chronobiology International 02/2005; 22(4):711-22. · 4.35 Impact Factor
  • P Cugini
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Claude Bernard has been a great medical physiologist of the ninenteenth century, who was able to convince biologists and physicians that the "experimental method" can and must be applied to the phenomena of living matter, as it is applied in physics and chemistry. With the concept of the "universality of the experimental method", the Modern Experimental Medicine begun to exist. However, C. Bernard deserves of further honor, having identified and promulgated a law of the living matter, i.e., the law concerning the "constancy of the interior biological environment". Such a law was later consacrated in 1929 by G.W. Cannon with the term "homeostasis". The homeostatic conception of biological functions had a great epistemological impact in the history of biology and medicine. As a matter of fact, all the modern biologists and physicians are today educated at the light of the homeostatic systems. Accordingly, C. Bernard is celebrated in his fame as the tutor of scientific medicine. Reading, however, what C. Bernard has written on the personalism and the eponimy of scientific ideas, one is prone to think that he would have not appreciated the dogmatic exaltation, the cult of his ideas on the biological constancy. He was aware that "... it is a fundamental rule in science to modify and change the ideas going on". And again "... But, since these ideas are not immutable verities, one must be ready to abandon and modify them when they cease to represent the reality". And again "The systems and doctrines are personal and pretend to be immortal and to preserve their personality. The experimental method, however, is impersonal; it zeroes the individuality and sacrifices the particular ideas of the a single person in favor of a general verity, which is established by means of the experimental criterion". And again "The great persons have never been promoters of absolute ed eternal verities in experimental sciences". And again "Any person who made the science to proceed, never pretended to define the limits; this person is destined to be surpassed and left apart by the progress of the future generations". And again "One of the most important obstacle that is encountered by humans along the course of knowledge is represented by the tendency of human acquisitions to be transformed into systems". With the discovery of chaos and biological systems in living matter, the law of homeostasis must be now revised.
    La Clinica terapeutica 05/2004; 155(4):159-64. · 0.33 Impact Factor
  • P Cugini, P Lucia
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS) is characterized by a circadian rhythm (CR) whose acrophase is detectable early in the morning. The prorenin and angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) show a CR as well. However, while the prorenin is in phase with the RAAS the ACE shows its circadian acrophase in the afternoon suggesting a negative feed-back. The RAAS CR is influenced by many factors. Its mesor is modified by sodium intake. The physical activity and rest affect both the mesor and acrophase. The variations in mesor amplitude and acrophase in aged subjects are conditioned by sex and physical activity. Moreover, the RAAS CR seems to be influenced by the race. In addition, it is abolished by the beta-adrenergic blockade, suggesting the existence of an adrenergic clock. Interestingly, the RAAS CR seems not to be a pacemaker for the blood pressure CR, whose acrophase is early in the afternoon. The RAAS CR is not substantially modified has in essential hypertension. However, the CR of plasma renin activity is disappeared in the low-renin essential hypertension, while the CR of plasma aldosterone is detectable. On the contrary, the aldosterone CR is not detectable in ascitic liver cirrhosis; but, it is restored when the ascites is removed by peritoneal-jugular shunt. No significant variation of the RAAS CR seems to occur in obesity and Cushing's syndrome. The RAAS CR has disappeared in Conn's disease as well as in Bartter's syndrome and Liddle's syndrome. The administration of indomethacine in Bartter's syndrome and of triamterene in Liddle's syndrome is able to restore the RAAS CR. Finally, the RAAS CR is not detectable in the heart or kidney transplanted patients; such a phenomenon could be attributed to cyclosporine and corticosteroids administration and to the denervation of the transplanted organs.
    La Clinica terapeutica 01/2004; 155(7-8):287-91. · 0.33 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to quantify the degree of sub-clinical anxiety and depression in essentially obese patients (EOP) and normoponderal healthy subjects (NHS) in order to identify quantitative differences based on mean scores and percentages (the latter in cases showing a tendency towards pathological anxiety and depression indicated by a score of > or = 8). The study involved 69 EOP (age: 13-72 years; BMI: > 25.0 and < 35.0 kg/m2) and 66 NHS (age: 18-68 years; BMI: > 18.5 and < or = 25.0 kg/m2). The scores, expressed in Anxiety Units (AU) and Depression Units (DU), were computed using ad hoc questionnaires (the ASQ and CDQ) validated for the Italian population. The mean scores of sub-clinical anxiety and depression in the EOP were significantly higher (both p = 0.001) than those of the NHS (6.33 +/- 2.38 vs 5.02 +/- 2.22 AU; 6.42 +/- 2.42 vs 5.02 +/- 2.03 DU), as were the percentages of cases with a tendency towards pathological anxiety and depression (42% vs 18%, and 43% vs 12%) (both p = 0.001). The significantly higher mean sub-clinical anxiety and depression score in the EOP indicate that a worse mood status is associated with obesity in a non-random manner. The significantly higher percentages of EOP with a tendency towards pathologic anxiety and depression indicate that obesity is a clinical condition that predisposes to the development of clinically relevant affective disorders.
    Eating and weight disorders: EWD 12/2003; 8(4):319-20. · 0.53 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The present study investigated the orexigram, the time-qualified self-rated estimate of hunger sensation (HS), in patients affected by morbid obesity (MO) with the aim of detecting how daily HS behaves before morbidly obese patients (MOP) undergo bariatric surgery (BS). This article is therefore a preliminary report as it is necessary to make subsequent comparisons with post-BS orexigrams. Preoperative orexigrams may be helpful in selecting the MOPs who are candidates for surgical treatment. Ten MOPs (five males and five females, with a mean age of 34 +/- 11 yr and a mean BMI of 49.32 +/- 7.26 kg/m2), and 19 clinically healthy control subjects (CHS: nine males and ten females, with a mean age of 24 +/- 2 yr and a mean BMI of 21.00 +/- 1.70 kg/m2) gave their informed consent to participate in the study. All of the study participants were asked to compile a 24-h orexigram, which was then biometrically analysed by means of: 1) conventional methods for parametric statistics; 2) rhythm analysis for their circadian rhythms; and 3) spectral analysis for their harmonic structure. The orexigrams of the MOPs had significantly increased mean daily levels (daily hyperorexia), retained their circadian periodicity despite an increase in mesor, and were consistently modified in their ultradian spectral harmonic components. The results show that the studied MOPs complain of a daily hyperorexia that is still perceived circadically. This perception is a structured abnormality, as demonstrated by the consistent changes in the spectral analysis, and so MOPs can be diagnosed as being affected by so-called "hyperorectic obesity". It will be interesting to see whether or not presurgical hyperorexia in MOPs is corrected by BS: if so, hyperorexia may become an additional indication, and presurgery orexigrams could be suggested as an additional means of selecting the hyperorectic MOPs who are candidates for surgical treatment.
    Eating and weight disorders: EWD 10/2003; 8(3):194-200. · 0.53 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to investigate the daily pattern of hunger sensation (HS) in patients affected by a non-advanced form of cystic fibrosis (CF) in order to detect how the orectic stimulus (OS) behaves in fibrocystic patients (FP) who are obliged to eat frequently because of their pancreatic exocrine insufficiency. The study involved 27 out-patients (13 males and 14 females; mean age 18 +/- 4 years; mean BMI 18.77 +/- 2.17 kg/m2) with a non-advanced form of CF, and 19 clinically healthy subjects (CHS, 9 males and 10 females; mean age 24 +/- 2 years; mean BMI 21.00 +/- 1.70 kg/m2). The FP were used to eating frequent small meals between the three main meals of breakfast, lunch and dinner. All of the participants were asked to compile an "orexigram"' which was chrono-biometrically analysed by means of: 1) conventional statistical methods; 2) rhythmometric analysis of circadian rhythm (CR); and 3) spectral analysis of the harmonic structure substantiating the within-day variability of HS. HS in FP had 1) a significantly increased daily mean level; 2) a well-established CR, with a significantly increased oscillatory mesor and amplitude; and 3) a modified orexigram power spectrum affecting the ultradian harmonic components. Our results suggest that the orectic perception of CF patients is characterised by "daily hyperorexia", with the maintenance of HS CR. This condition seems to be a structured abnormality insofar as there are visible changes in the orexigram spectral resolution, particular in the ultradian harmonic components whose oscillatory frequency is responsible for the diurnal pattern of HS. The hyperorexia of the investigated FP indicates that their frequent small meals are not sufficient to satisfy their HS, which may cause a vicious circle leading to progressively disrupted mealtime behaviour.
    Eating and weight disorders: EWD 07/2003; 8(2):124-9. · 0.53 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The present study investigates the properties of blood pressure (BP) circadian rhythm (CR) in newly-diagnosed hypertensives (NDH) as a function of the chronological age in which hypertension became manifest. The study was performed on 141 NDH (71 males and 70 females, ranging in age from 24 year to 79 years), who were monitored in their 24-h BP via a non-invasive, ambulatory, automated recorder. The relation between the properties of BP CR and the age of the development of hypertension was investigated via the Clinospectror method, a trend analysis (periodic-linear regression method) for rhythmic biophenomena. A trend was detected for each one of the three properties of BP CR in relation with the age in which high BP made its appearance. As a matter of fact, the daily mean level (mesor) of BP CR was seen to be progressively less pronounced. The amplitude was found to show a progressive increment of its extent. The acrophase was seen to show a progressive antemeridian rotation of its timing. These trends suggest that hypertension tends to be less severe when its development occurs in subjects older in age. Such a less pronounced severity is, however, accompanied by a more pronounced oscillation of BP values during the 24-h of the day. Such a higher circadian variability, in turn, tends to show its highest expression during the morning hours of the day.
    La Clinica terapeutica 01/2003; 154(1):21-6. · 0.33 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: We studied the within-day determinations of some body composition (BC) parameters in clinically healthy elderly subjects with the aim of investigating their circadian rhythms (CR), which are known to vary in a circadian manner in clinically healthy young adults. The study involved six non-smoking, clinically healthy elderly males (mean age: 75 +/- 4 years; mean weight: 71.07 +/- 10.26 kg; mean height: 170 +/- 5 cm, mean BMI: 24 +/- 1 kg/m2). The BC parameters were determined by means of bioelectrical impedance analysis (BIA) at 2-hour intervals during the day and night, with the subjects lying horizontally in bed. The time-qualified BC estimates were analysed using the Cosinor method. The analysis revealed that the healthy elderly subjects had lost the CR of a number of the BC parameters, including fat body mass, cell body mass, extracellular body mass, total body water, extracellular body water, intracellular body water, and the Na and K exchangeable pools. However, they still retained the CR of body weight and lean body mass, with the expected nocturnal phase of oscillation. The abolition of the CR of the majority of BC parameters in the elderly suggests that human senescence is characterised by consistent changes in the daily rhythmic patterns of fat, water and electrolyte metabolism.
    Eating and weight disorders: EWD 10/2002; 7(3):182-9. · 0.53 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Darier's erythema annulare centrifugum (EAC) is often associated with infectious, autoimmune or neoplastic disease, nevertheless, most cases of EAC remain unexplained. We report a case of EAC with neonatal onset and a clinical course of over 20 years. The patient presented from the 6th day of life with erythematous papules that enlarged centrifugally to form figurate, annular or policyclic plaques involving the entire cutaneous surface. The clinical picture had a chronic course, disappearing only during unrelated febrile episodes. Histologic examination revealed a normal epidermis and a dense perivascular lymphohistiocytic infiltrate and numerous eosinophils in the superficial and reticular dermis. Today the patient is 24 years old and his lesions are still unchanged. Recently, clinical evaluation revealed a diffuse sderodermic induration. A second biopsy showed a diffuse thickening of collagen fibers in the dermis. To our knowledge, this is the second report of EAC with neonatal onset and such a long and peculiar clinical course.
    Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology 10/2002; 16(5):500-3. · 2.69 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: 1. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of a short (1 day) fast by testing biohumoral variables associated with the human circadian rhythm. 2. Fifteen clinically healthy male volunteers (32 +/- 8 years old) participated in the study. Subjects were fed a control diet for 7 days. The last day was a control day and the following 8th day was the fasting day. Each subject was asked to collect urine seven times over a 24 h period. Chemical and hormonal variables were measured in each fractionated urine specimen. The time- qualified urinary excretion rates were biometrically analysed using conventional and chronobiological methods. 3. During fasting, significant incremental changes were detected in the urinary excretion rates of potassium, aldosterone, 17-hydroxycorticosteroids and adrenaline and significant decremental changes were detected in the excretion rates of sodium, chloride, creatinine, urea nitrogen, uric acid, 17-ketosteroids, noradrenaline and dopamine. The circadian rhythmicity of the variables was well preserved and remained almost stable throughout the fasting phase. 4. Fasting affected the mean oscillatory levels and oscillatory amplitudes of variables, suggesting that nutrients may have played roles as tonic and phasic modulators on the mechanisms that physiologically regulate ircadian rhythmicity.
    Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology and Physiology 08/2002; 29(7):582-8. · 2.41 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The present study investigated the blood pressure (BP) load (L), namely Baric Impact (BI), in normotensives with and without endothelial dysfunction (ED). The aim was to detect baric differences supporting the thesis that the ED is associated with vasopressant effects that are responsible for a paraphysiological condition of higher BP (pre-hypertension) even in normotensives. Thirty-eight normotensives were investigated in their endothelium-dependent vasomotricity by mean of the non-invasive post-ischemic brachial artery vasodilation test. Additionally, their underwent a non-invasive ambulatory (A) BP monitoring (M) over the 24-h span in order to confirm that they were not hypertensive. The ABPM served also to compute the systolic (S) and diastolic (D) BI. The ED was detected in eight normotensives of the investigated group. These cases with ED were found to show a significantly higher SBI and DBI as compared to the normotensives without ED. The significant elevation of the SBI and DBI in normotensives with ED is an evidence convincing that a dysfunctional endothelium is responsible for vasopressant effects that cause a paraphysiological status of "pre-hypertension".
    La Clinica terapeutica 01/2002; 153(5):309-15. · 0.33 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The present study investigates the circadian rhythm (CR) of levo-carnitine (L-c) in systemic venous blood, in order to detect rhythmometric parameters that can be used for programming an eventual chronoterapy with such a molecule. The L-c CR was investigated in 10 clinically healthy subjects (5 M; 5 F; mean age: 26.02 +/- 1.11 yrs), who were diurnally active and nocturnally resting. Blood samples were taken at 06:00; 08:00; 12:00; 18:00; 20:00; 24:00, not juxtaposed to breakfast, lunch and dinner. The serum concentrations of L-c were assayed via a spectrophotometric method. A nychtohemeral variability in circulating levels of L-c was observed, with a peak in the afternoon. Such a intradiem variability was validated to have the properties of a significant CR (MESOR = 33.37 mumol/l with a SEM of 1.19 mumol/l; amplitude = 6.31 mumol/l with 95%CL ranging from 3.58 mumol/l to 9.69 mumol/l; acrophase at 15:52 h:min with 95%CL ranging from 13:28 h:min to 17:00 h:min). It is important to remark that the validation of a CR for the systemic serum levels of L-c was obtained in diurnally-active/nocturnally resting subjects. Such validated rhythmometric properties are parameters that can be used for programming an eventual chronotherapy, considering that the molecule L-c is used for treating its various types of primary and secondary deficiency.
    La Clinica terapeutica 01/2002; 153(4):237-42. · 0.33 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The present study investigates the daily pattern of hunger sensation (HS), namely orexia, in patients affected by "Dysthymic Disorder" (DD). The aim is to detect whether there are changes in the circadian rhythm (CR) of HS, herein investigated as a "marker rhythm", that can reveal a dysfunction of the "circadian biological clock" (CBC). In such a circumstance, one could be authorised to suggest a resynchronizing therapy, via antidepressant chronizing drugs and/or morning exposure to bright light, as it is currently done in other types of human depression, having a documented dysfunction of the CBC. Volunteered with informed consent for the study 6 women (age = 34-56 years; mean BMI = 22.7 +/- 4.8 kg/m2) affected by DD. 10 clinically healthy women (CHW, age = 21-52 years; mean BMI = 24.0 +/- 0.5 kg/m2) were recruited as the controls. Both of the dysthymic patients (DP) and CHW were asked to compile the "orexigram", which was chronobiometrically analyzed by means of the 1. conventional statistical methods; 2. rhythmometric analysis for the CR; 3. spectral analysis for the harmonic components of the orexigram. The DP were found to be characterized by a normal daily level of HS, with 1. the CR of the orectic stimulus to be preserved and well located in its acrophase, and 2. the spectrogram of the orexigram to be substantially well configured. The above-cited results suggest that the DP show no alterations in the HS marker rhythm that can be taken as an evidence for declaring that the DD is not characterized by a relevant dysfunction of the CBC. Lacking in particular a phase-shift in HS marker rhythm, it can be argued that the DD is an affective disorder for which a resynchronizing therapy (exposure to bright light or pharmacological chronizers) seems to be "a priori" not indicated.
    La Clinica terapeutica 01/2002; 153(1):25-30. · 0.33 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

424 Citations
242.66 Total Impact Points


  • 1987–2010
    • Sapienza University of Rome
      • • Department of Surgical Sciences
      • • Department of Medicine
      Roma, Latium, Italy
  • 2002
    • Azienda Ospedaliera Santa Maria di Terni
      Terni, Umbria, Italy
  • 1996–2002
    • Nakamura Gakuen University
      Hukuoka, Fukuoka, Japan
  • 1993–2002
    • Kyushu University
      • Faculty of Medical Sciences
      Fukuoka-shi, Fukuoka-ken, Japan
    • University of Wales
      Cardiff, Wales, United Kingdom
  • 1982–1993
    • The American University of Rome
      Roma, Latium, Italy
  • 1992
    • Umberto I Policlinico di Roma
      Roma, Latium, Italy
  • 1989
    • Martin Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg
      Halle-on-the-Saale, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany
  • 1985
    • Università Degli Studi Roma Tre
      Roma, Latium, Italy
  • 1984
    • University of Minnesota Duluth
      Duluth, Minnesota, United States