[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Factors related to bacterial virulence and/or to the host have been implicated in the pathogenesis of recurrent urinary tract infections (rUTI), but in most cases the cause is unknown. Mannose binding lectin (MBL) is an acute phase glycoprotein that exerts immunological functions by binding to the surface of a variety of pathogens. Some human gene variants reduce MBL activity thereby predisposing the host to bacterial and viral infections. The aim of this study was to investigate MBL2 gene variants in relation to rUTI risk. Six MBL gene variants and seven haplotypes were analyzed by PCR and direct sequencing in rUTI patients (n=83) and in healthy subjects from southern Italy (n=642). The frequencies of the L allele (-550) and the HYPA haplotype were higher in controls than in patients stratified according to sex (p<0.05). Our data indicate that the HYPA haplotype in the MBL2 gene could be associated with a minor risk of developing rUTI in males.
International journal of infectious diseases: IJID: official publication of the International Society for Infectious Diseases 12/2013; · 2.17 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Accumulating evidence shows an association between deregulation of miRNAs and exposure to environmental chemicals; miRNAs play a unique regulatory role in gene expression. Among environmental pollutants, dioxins are a family of compounds that are known to have multiple hazardous effects. Also, in utero exposure of the fetus to dioxins has been shown to cause impaired psychomotor development, decreased immune function and skin disease. miR-191 is a microRNA that has been found to be up-regulated by dioxin in hepatocellular carcinoma cells in vitro. Our study provides the first molecular evidence in vivo of a positive relationship between levels of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and miR-191 expression in human peripheral blood mononuclear cells. miR-191 expression was significantly correlated with blood concentrations of total PCB and, in particular, of 3,3',4,4',5,5'-hexachlorobiphenyl (PCB 169, a coplanar congener). Blood concentrations of PCB 169 correlated significantly with miR-191 expression in pregnant women living in a PCB-polluted area, who underwent therapeutic abortion due to fetal malformations. These data suggest that miRNAs could be potential biomarkers to clarify the mechanisms of environmental disease.
Mutation Research/Fundamental and Molecular Mechanisms of Mutagenesis 03/2013; · 3.90 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: STUDY OBJECTIVE: To describe the hysteroscopic findings in patients complaining of menorrhagia to establish any significant association between menorrhagia and benign/malignant intrauterine disorders. DESIGN: Prospective cohort study (Canadian Task Force classification II). SETTING: University La Sapienza, Rome, Italy. PATIENTS: One hundred eighteen premenopausal women undergoing office hysteroscopy for menorrhagia (group A) and 344 premenopausal patients undergoing office hysteroscopy for other indications (noncyclic abnormal uterine bleeding, infertility, ultrasonographic abnormalities, etc) (group B). INTERVENTIONS: Office hysteroscopy. MEASUREMENT AND MAIN RESULTS: Data on the prevalence of hysteroscopic findings (cervical polyps, endometrial polyps, submucous myomas, low-grade hyperplasia and high-grade hyperplasia/endometrial carcinoma) were compared between group A and group B. The total prevalence, as well as the prevalence of type 0 and type I myomas (totally or >50% intracavitary, respectively), and the mean number per patients with submucous myomas was significantly higher in group A compared with group B (p = .0001, p = .024, and p = .017, respectively). Multivariable logistic regression analysis showed a statistically significant association between age (odds ratio 4.15, 95% confidence interval 1.55-11.1 in the 40- to 49-year age group), presence of submucous myomas (odds ratio 2.76, 95% confidence interval 1.52-5.00), and menorrhagia. CONCLUSIONS: Menorrhagia seems to be associated with aging, the presence and number of submucous myomas, and with the degree of their intracavitary development.
Journal of Minimally Invasive Gynecology 01/2013; · 1.61 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Besides life-style changes, electrical stimulation or surgery, pharmacological treatment is becoming the first-choice approach in women suffering from lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS), including urge urinary incontinence (UUI) and overactive bladder (OAB). Several drugs for the treatment of bladder storage and voiding disorders are currently available and, in the near future, novel compounds with higher specificity for the lower urinary tract receptors will be accessible. This will bring optimization of therapy, reducing side effects and increasing compliance, especially in patients with comorbidities and in women. The purpose of this paper is to give an overview on the pharmacotherapy of two common inter-correlated urological conditions, UUI and OAB. The study was conducted by analyzing and comparing the data of the recent international literature on this topic. Advances in the discovery of pharmacological options have dramatically improved the quality of life of patients affected by incontinence, but further studies are needed to increase the effectiveness and safety of the therapies used in this field.
European journal of obstetrics, gynecology, and reproductive biology 01/2013; · 1.97 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We report the case of a yolk sac tumor of the ovary in a 26 years old woman. The laparoscopic approach and the BEP chemotherapy were fundamental to have a minimally invasive treatment and to preserve fertility.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We did a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study to assess the incidence of infectious complications and the protective effect of antibiotic administration during operative hysteroscopic procedures in an office setting. A total of 1046 consecutively enrolled women with intrauterine lesions were randomly allocated to the reference group (523 patients administered with 1 g of cefazolin intramuscularly) and the study group (523 patients administered with 10 mL of isotonic sodium chloride solution), and treated in office setting by operative hysteroscopy for endometrial polypectomy, uterine septa, submucosal myomas, and intrauterine adhesions. The primary outcome measure was the computation of difference between groups in postsurgical infectious complications occurring in the 5 days after the procedures. The time spent in performing the various procedures did not differ significantly (P > .05) between the groups. With respect to the overall rate of postsurgical infection, we found that 12 (1.15%) of 1046 patients referred with symptoms related to infective complications, 7 (1.3% of 523 women) in the study-untreated-group and 5 (1.0% of 523 women) in the reference group. Such incidences did not differ significantly between the groups (P > .05). Antibiotics were prescribed in all cases of postsurgical infection and the infective process resolved in few days. None of these patients developed serious infections with adnexal involvement, as confirmed by clinical and ultrasounds evaluation. The results of the current study would support the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommendation not to prescribe routine antibiotic administration in the case of hysteroscopic surgery.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Data relating to the influence of hormonal contraception on sexual life are conflicting and mostly they refer to oral contraceptives. In this study we evaluated the effect of a long-acting contraceptive on sexual function, metabolism and bleeding pattern variations.
23 women with a permanent partner and an active sexual life completed a specific questionnaire at the start of the study and after cycles 3 and 6 of contraceptive use; a blood sample was performed or metabolic evaluation and a "bleeding calendar" was compiled by the patients.
There is an increase of quality and frequency of sexual function after 6 month of contraception; there aren't significant change in metabolic parameters and is detectable a modification of bleeding patterns.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive and seriously disabling adult-onset neurological disease. Accumulating evidence indicates that various miRNAs, expressed in a spatially and temporally controlled manner in the brain, play a key role in neuronal development. In addition, misregulation of microRNAs contributes to some mental disorders and neurodegeneration diseases. Here, we analyzed the expression profiles of 911 human miRNAs using microarray technology in leukocytes, the most readily available human tissue cells, obtained from 8 patients affected by sporadic amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (sALS) and 12 healthy controls. An independent group of 14 sALS patients and 14 controls was used for validation by TaqMan real-time polymerase chain reaction assay. We identified 8 miRNAs that were significantly up- or downregulated in sALS patients as compared to healthy controls. The significant variations in miRNAs profiles detected in leukocytes have been related to miRNAs predominantly expressed in the nervous system. One of these miRNAs, miR-338-3p, has previously been shown to be de-regulated in ALS brains. This study, for the first time, detected specific microRNAs disease-related changes at an earlier stage of sALS. We suggest that miRNAs profiles found in the peripheral blood leukocytes from sALS patients can be relevant to understand the pathogenesis of sALS and/or used as biomarkers of the disease.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Menopause is characterized by depletion of ovarian follicles, a reduction of ovarian hormones to castrate levels and elevated levels of serum gonadotropins from the anterior pituitary gland. Although this process has significant repercussions throughout the body and affects a large proportion of our society, the neuroendocrine control mechanisms that accompany menopause are poorly understood. This review aims to examine rigorously the most accredited literature to provide an update about our current understanding of the role of the hypothalamic-pituitary axis in the onset of and transition into female reproductive senescence, focusing on the role of some specific neuropeptides in regulating the HPG axis and on their effects on several menopausal symptoms, especially referring to the cardiovascular risk, to open up new horizons for new therapeutic strategies.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Several studies demonstrate links between environmental stress and index of reduced health, including risk factors for cardiovascular disease, reduced immune function and cancer risks. We investigated the hypothesis that pollution, as an environmental stress, impacts health by modulating the rate of cellular aging in healthy pregnant women. Our research looked at the effects that illegal waste sites have on the localized population of pregnant women in Campania, Italy. As is often the case in illegal dumping, the effects on the population are often seen well before knowing what specific agents in the soil and water are responsible. Here we provide evidence that the pollution in this region is significantly associated with higher oxidative stress, shorter telomere length and lower telomerase activity, which are known determinants of cell senescence and aging-related meiotic dysfunction in women, in peripheral blood mononuclear cells from healthy pregnant women, subjected to therapeutic abortion in the second trimester of pregnancy. These findings may have implications for understanding how, at the cellular level, environmental stress may promote earlier onset of age-related diseases.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Transcriptional silencing by CpG island hypermethylation plays a critical role in endometrial carcinogenesis. In a collection of benign, premalignant and malignant endometrial lesions, a methylation profile of a complete gene panel, such steroid receptors (ERα, PR), DNA mismatch repair (hMLH1), tumor-suppressor genes (CDKN2A/P16 and CDH1/E-CADHERIN) and WNT pathway inhibitors (SFRP1, SFRP2, SFRP4, SFRP5) was investigated in order to demonstrate their pathogenetic role in endometrial lesions. Our results indicate that gene hypermethylation may be an early event in endometrial endometrioid tumorigenesis. Particularly, ERα, PR, hMLH1, CDKN2A/P16, SFRP1, SFRP2 and SFRP5 revealed a promoter methylation status in endometrioid carcinoma, whereas SFRP4 showed demethylation in cancer. P53 immunostaining showed weak-focal protein expression level both in hyperplasic lesions and in endometrioid cancer. Non-endometrioid cancers showed very low levels of epigenetic methylations, but strong P53 protein positivity. Fisher exact test revealed a statistically significant association between hMLH1, CDKN2A/P16 and SFRP1 genes methylation and endometrioid carcinomas and between hMLH1 gene methylation and peritumoral endometrium (p < 0.05). Our data confirm that the methylation profile of the peritumoral endometrium is different from the altered molecular background of benign endometrial polyps and hyperplasias. Therefore, our findings suggest that the methylation of hMLH1, CDKN2A/P16 and SFRP1 may clearly distinguish between benign and malignant lesions. Finally, this study assessed that the use of an epigenetic fingerprint may improve the current diagnostic tools for a better clinical management of endometrial lesions.
Cancer biology & therapy 09/2011; 12(5):447-57. · 3.29 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Emergency contraception is a common practice now. Many categories of drugs are marketed with modifications in dosage, in combination and even in the timing of administration. Recent re-analysis suggests that there is still no uniformity of opinion on the actual mechanism of action and this has often fueled the ethical controversy. This review analyzes the most common emergency contraception drugs: levonorgestrel, mifepristone and ulipristal acetate about their action underlining that the hormonal products, when used in emergency contraception, play different roles depending on the phase of the menstrual cycle during which they are administered.This review aims to examine rigorously the most accredited literature to verify if a evidence-based uniformity of opinions has been achieved about the biological effects of hormones administered after the sexual intercourse.
Translational medicine @ UniSa. 09/2011; 1:271-94.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To assess the efficacy of a polyethylene oxide-sodium carboxymethylcellulose gel (Intercoat; Gynecare, division of Ethicon, Inc., Somerville, NJ) in preventing the development of de novo intrauterine adhesions (IUAs) after hysteroscopic surgery and to rate the patency of the internal uterine ostium at 1-month follow-up diagnostic hysteroscopy.
Randomized controlled study (Canadian Task Force classification I).
One hundred ten patients diagnosed during office hysteroscopy as having single or multiple lesions suitable for surgical treatment or resistant dysfunctional uterine bleeding requiring endometrial ablation.
Patients were randomized to 2 groups. Group 1 underwent hysteroscopic surgery plus intrauterine application of Intercoat gel, and group 2 underwent hysteroscopic surgery only (control group). Follow-up office hysteroscopy was performed at 1 month after surgery to assess the rate and severity of IUA formation and to rate the patency of the internal uterine ostium after the surgical intervention.
Compared with the group 2, group 1 demonstrated a significant reduction in the incidence (6% vs 22%; p <.05) of de-novo IUAs. Application of the gel seemed to reduce the severity of IUAs, with fewer moderate and severe IUAs at follow-up in group 1 in comparison with group 2 (33% vs 92%). Furthermore, group 1 demonstrated significant improvement in the degree of patency of the internal uterine ostium (41.9% of cases) in comparison with diagnostic office hysteroscopy performed at enrollment (p <.05). In contrast, in group 2, worsening of patency of the internal uterine ostium was recorded in 18.2% of cases (p <.05).
Intercoat gel seems to prevent de novo formation of IUAs and to improve the patency of the internal uterine ostium at follow-up hysteroscopy. However, larger studies are needed to confirm these findings.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The endocannabinoid system plays protective roles against the growth and the spreading of several types of carcinomas. Because estrogens regulate this system both in physiological states and cancer, in this paper we evaluated its involvement in endometrial carcinoma, a well-known estrogen-dependent tumor. To test whether the endocannabinoid system is expressed in endometrial cancer, tissue samples were collected both from 18 patients undergoing surgical treatment for endometrial adenocarcinoma and 16 healthy age-matched controls, and treated for Western blot and immunohistochemical analysis. Moreover, tissues were dounce homogenized and submitted to endocannabinoid measurement by liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry. To evaluate the physiological role of the endocannabinoid system, a human endometrial cancer cell-line (AN3CA) was used and transiently transfected with a plasmid containing the cDNA for the endocannabinoid receptor CB(2). Cells were incubated for 48 h with an agonist (JWH133) (10 mum) or antagonist (SR144528) (1 mum) of CB(2) 24 h after transfection, and cell proliferation was measured by the 3-[4,5-dimethyltiazol-2yl]-2,5 diphenyltetrazolium bromide formazan assay. In human endometrial carcinoma biopsies the expression of CB(2) receptor and the levels of its ligand, 2-arachidonoylglycerol increased, whereas monoacylglycerol lipase, an enzyme responsible for 2-arachidonoylglycerol degradation, was down-regulated. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed that CB(2) was overexpressed only in malignant endometrial cells. CB(2)-overexpressing AN3CA cells showed a significant reduction in cell vitality compared with parental AN3CA cells: incubation with the selective CB(2) antagonist SR144128 restored the viability of CB(2)-overexpressing cells to that of untransfected cells. In conclusion, the endocannabinoid system seems to play an important role in human endometrial carcinoma, and modulation of CB(2) activity/expression may account for a tumor-suppressive effect.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The aim of this review is to define the role of the combined dienogest (DNG)/estradiol valerate (E2V) contraceptive pill, in terms of biochemistry, metabolic and pharmacological effects and clinical application as well. E2V is the esterified form of 17β-estradiol (E2), while dienogest is a fourth-generation progestin with a partial antiandrogenic effect. The cycle stability is achieved with 2 to 3 mg DNG, supporting contraceptive efficacy. In this new oral contraceptive, E2V is combined with DNG in a four-phasic dose regimen (the first two tablets contain 3 mg E2V; the next five tablets include 2 mg E2V + 2 mg DNG, followed by 17 tablets with 2 mg E2V + 3 mg DNG; followed by two tablets with 1 mg E2V only, and finally two placebo tablets). Duration and intensity of scheduled withdrawal bleeding are lower with this contraceptive pill, whereas the incidence and the intensity of intra-cyclic bleeding are similar to the other oral contraceptive. With this new pill the levels of high density lipoprotein increased, while the levels of prothrombin fragment 1 + 2 and D-dimer remained relatively unchanged; the levels of sex hormone binding globulin, cortisol binding globulin, thyroxine binding globulin increased. The most frequently reported adverse events are: breast pain, headache, acne, alopecia, migraine, increase of bodyweight. The satisfaction rate is about 79.4%.
International Journal of Women's Health 01/2010; 2:279-90.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Office operative hysteroscopy is a recent technique that enables treatment of uterine pathologic disorders in the ambulatory setting using miniaturized hysteroscopes with mechanical or electric instruments. The available international literature from 1990 to 2002 has clearly demonstrated that such technique enables performance of hysteroscopically directed endometrial biopsy and treatment of uterine adhesions, anatomic disorders, polyps, and small myomas safely and successfully without cervical dilation and the need for anesthesia. This review provides a comprehensive survey of further advancements of office operative hysteroscopy in the treatment of other gynecologic pathologic conditions that have not been included in the schema of treatment indications for office procedures proposed in 2002. A search of MEDLINE, EMBASE, and the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews identified articles published from 2003 to 2009. Eighteen articles were identified: 9 on hysteroscopic sterilization; 1 on office-based metroplasty, 8 on office-based treatment of some uncommon gynecologic pathologic conditions (e.g., hematometra, diagnosis and treatment of vaginal lesions, treatment of uterine cystic neoformations, bleeding from the cervical stump, diagnosis and treatment of endocervical ossification, and removal of uterovaginal packing). All performed procedures were carried out safely and successfully in the office setting, with high patient tolerance and minimal discomfort. The success of the procedures has been confirmed by resolution of symptoms and at follow-up ultrasonographic and hysteroscopic examinations. Currently, as a result of technologic advancements and increased operator experience, an increasing number of gynecologic pathologic conditions traditionally treated in the operating room may be treated safely and effectively using office operative hysteroscopy.