Life evolved from the primeval world of physics. Sensory systems inform animals of the natural environment, enabling them to conduct responsively. The discovery of weak, DC bioelectric fields in the vicinity of aquatic organisms and the role they play in guiding sharks and rays to their prey have led to the recognition of fundamental, hitherto less well known, physical aspects of sensory biology. The inferred cybernetic algorithm of electric-field orientation in sharks and rays is highly effective and extremely robust. In orienting to the weak DC electric fields of ocean currents and to the earth's magnetic field, sharks and rays unwittingly practise the motional-electric principles that Einstein had in mind when he introduced the special theory of relativity. At the sense-organ, receptor-membrane, and ion-channel levels, the elasmobranch ampullae of Lorenzini operate on the basis of graded positive feedback driven by negative conductance, supposedly employing voltage-sensitive ion channels as the active, excitable elements. The electric sense of sharks and rays presents an exquisite implementation of the very biophysical principles that also govern the graded, much richer than all-or-none, integrative brain processes of animal and man.
The effect of a stomach pentadecapeptide, BPC 157, on Parkinson's disease in mice was investigated, along with its salutary activity on stomach lesions induced by parkinsongenic agents. Parkinsongenic agents, 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) (30.0 mg x kg(-1)b.w. i.p. once daily for 6d, and after 4d once 50.0 mg x kg(-1)b.w. i.p.) or reserpine (5.0 mg x kg(-1)b.w. i.p.) were applied i.p. BPC 157 (1.50 microg or 15.0 ng x kg(-1)b.w. i.p.) was applied 15 min before or alternatively 15 min after each MPTP administration. In reserpine studies, BPC 157 (10.0 microg or 10.0 ng x kg(-1)b.w. i.p.) was given either 15 min before reserpine or in the already established complete catalepsy 24 h thereafter. BPC 157 strongly improved the MPTP-impaired somatosensory orientation and reduced the MPTP-induced hyperactivity, and most importantly, MPTP-motor abnormalities (tremor, akinesia, catalepsy -otherwise very prominent in saline control), leading to almost complete abolition of otherwise regularly lethal course of MPTP treatment in controls. Likewise, in reserpine experiments, BPC 157 strongly prevented the development of otherwise very prominent catalepsy and when applied 24 h thereafter reversed the established catalepsy. In addition, a reduction of reserpine-hypothermy (BPC 157 pre-treatment) and reversal of further prominent temperature fall (BPC 157 post-treatment) have been consistently observed. Taking together these data, as the two most suitable animal models were consistently used and since the high effectiveness was demonstrated in pre- and post-treatment, microg and ng regimens, BPC 157 as an organoprotector should be further therapeutically investigated. Additionally, given in either regimen, pentadecapeptide BPC 157 strongly attenuated the stomach lesions in mice that otherwise consistently appeared in mice treated with the parkinsogenic neurotoxin MPTP.
PL-10.1.AK-15 is an active fragment of a naturally occurring protein first isolated from human gastric juice. Among its other protective effects, PL-10.1.AK-15 has demonstrated a protective effect on the gastrointestinal tract. The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of PL-10.1.AK-15 on two functional parameters of gastrointestinal function: gastric acid secretion and gastrointestinal motility. Gastric acid secretion was assessed in male Wistar rats using a modified method of Shay, while gastrointestinal motility was assessed in male NMRI mice by charcoal propulsion. PL-10.1.AK-15 was given in three different doses (3, 10 and 100 micrograms/kg body weight) in accordance with the experimental protocol. The results of these experiments indicate that PL-10.1.AK-15 in the investigated doses had no influence on gastric acid secretion or gastrointestinal motility.
In this review, we present the voltage-sensitive dye imaging (VSDI) method. The possibility offered for in vivo (and in vitro) brain imaging is unprecedented in terms of spatial and temporal resolution. However, the unresolved multi-component origin of the optical signal encourages us to perform a detailed analysis of the method limitation and the existing models. We propose a biophysical model at a mesoscopic scale in order to understand and interpret this signal.
Liver lesions and portal hypertension in rats, following chronic alcohol administration, are a particular target for therapy. Portal hypertension (mm Hg) assessed directly into the portal vein, and liver lesions induced by 7.28 g/kg b.w. of alcohol given in drinking water for 3 months, were counteracted by a stable gastric pentadecapeptide BPC 157, GEPPPGKPADDAGLV, M.W. 1419, known to have a beneficial effect in a variety of models of gastrointestinal or liver lesions (10 microg or 10 ng/kg b.w. i.p. or i.g.) and propranolol (10 mg/kg b.w. i.g.), but not ranitidine (10 mg/kg b.w. i.g.) or saline (5 ml/kg b.w. i.p./i.g.; control). The medication (once daily) was throughout either the whole 3 months period (1) or the last month only (2) (last application 24 h before sacrifice). In the background of 7.28 g/kg/daily alcohol regimen similar lesions values were assessed in control rats following alcohol consumption, after 2 or 3 months of drinking. Both prophylactic and therapeutic effects were shown. After a period of 2 or 3 months, in all control saline [intragastrically (i.g.) or intraperitoneally (i.p.)] treated rats, the applied alcohol regimen consistently induced a significant rise of portal blood pressure values over values noted in healthy rats. In rats that received gastric pentadecapeptide BPC 157 or propranolol the otherwise raised portal pressure was reduced to the values noted in healthy rats. Besides, a raised surface area (microm(2)) and increased circumference (microm) of hepatocyte or hepatocyte nucleus [HE staining, measured using PC-compatible program ISSA (VAMS, Zagreb, Croatia)] and an advanced steatosis [scored (0-4), Oil Red staining] (on 100 randomly assigned hepatocytes per each liver), an increased liver weight, all together parallel a raised portal pressure in controls. Some of them were completely eliminated (not different from healthy rats, i.e. portal pressure, the circumference and area of hepatocytes, liver weight), while others were markedly attenuated (values less than in drinking controls, still higher than in healthy rats, i.e. circumference and area of hepatocytes nucleus). On the other hand, ranitidine application attenuated only steatosis development. In summary, despite continuous chronic alcohol drinking, pentadecapeptide BPC 157, and propranolol may prevent portal hypertension as well as reverse already established portal hypertension along with related liver disturbances.
The role of capsaicin-sensitive primary afferent sensory nerves in the regulation of gastrointestinal motility in human is not clarified yet. In this study, we investigated the effect of 400 microg capsaicin given intragastrically on gastric emptying measured by 13C-octanoic acid breath test in ten healthy human subjects. Four parameters of gastric emptying curves were taken into consideration: 1) maximum value of the curve, 2) time belonging to this maximum, 3) slope of the rising part of the curve and 4) time belonging to the 50% of the area under the curve. Administration of 400 microg capsaicin significantly increased the slope of gastric emptying curve (from 0.1 +/- 0.01 to 0.139 +/- 0.014 U x min(-1), P < 0.05) and significantly decreased the time belonging to the maximum value of emptying curve (from 150 +/- 18 to 75 +/- 12 min, P < 0.05) and the time belonging to the 50% of the area under the curve (from 112 +/- 15 to 99 +/- 14 min, P < 0.05). According to our results 400 microg capsaicin enhances gastric emptying rate in healthy human subjects.
There is no single technique which fulfils the criterion for a reference method to detect Helicobacter pylori (Hp) infection. The aim was to compare the results of antral histology (H), rapid urease test (U) and urea breath test (UBT) from antral biopsy samples in patients having gastric or duodenal lesions during upper GI endoscopy. We used the following methods: 1) biopsy specimens for histology (Warthin-Starry staining); 2) rapid urease test; and 3) 13C-urea breath test with infrared spectrometry. The total number of patients was 166 examined by H, U, and UBT. H, U and UBT were negative (-) in 64 patients and positive (+) in 51. The true positivity and false negativity (%, number of patients in parentheses) of each method based upon the positivity of the other two tests were: H+, U+ (54): UBT+, 94.4% (51) and UBT-, 5.6% (3); H+, UBT+ (57): U+, 89.5% (51) and U-, 10.5% (6); U+, UBT+ (65): H+, 78.5% (51) and H-, 21.5% (14). If Hp infection is considered to be positive when at least two tests detect the presence of Hp, UBT shows the highest sensitivity in comparison to histology of biopsy specimens and urease test. UBT is highly recommended as a screening test for Hp infection in patients presenting upper GI endoscopic alterations.
We describe the effects of nitric oxide (NO) agonists and antagonists and the influence of a novel organoprotective pentadecapeptide BPC 157, on the development of pulmonary hypertension syndrome and tissue lesions in chicks. Acute toxicity, which includes single dose application of saline (1 mL intraperitoneally (i.p.)), BPC 157 (10 micrograms/kg bw), L-NAME (NO antagonist, doses 50, 100, 150 mg/kg bw) and L-arginine (NO agonist/100 mg/kg bw with their combination L-NAME + BPC 157; L-NAME + L-arginine) was investigated. In this experiment pathohistological examination of the spleen, heart, liver and lungs and hematological analysis was conducted. In the chronic toxicity experiment, the animals were treated daily for 5 weeks with L-NAME (10 mg/kg bw), L-arginine (100 mg/kg bw), BPC 157 (10 micrograms/kg bw) and their combinations (L-NAME + BPC 157; L-NAME + BPC 157; L-NAME + L-arginine) i.p. Seven animals from each group, including controls (saline 1 mL i.p.) were killed every week. Application of L-NAME caused pulmonary hypertension syndrome (PHS) in the treated chicks, which was prevented by the simultaneous application of L-arginine and BPC 157. Pathohistological examination of both acute and chronic toxicity revealed that L-NAME caused severe tissue damage (myocardial and hepatic cell necrosis, necrosis of the lymphoid cells in the spleen) while L-arginine provoked predominantly congestion, edema and hemorrhages in all organs. The effect of L-NAME was successfully inhibited by the application of L-arginine and BPC 157 but the latter substance did not cause any tissue or organ damage. Hematological analysis shows significant hemoglobin and leukocyte number decrease in the L-NAME-treated groups of chicks.
Up to now, for gastric lesions potentiation or induction, as well as determination of endogenous dopamine significance, dopamine antagonist or dopamine vesicle depletor were given separately. Therefore, without combination studies, the evidence for dopamine significance remains split on either blockade of dopamine post-synaptic receptor or inhibition of dopamine storage, essentially contrasting with endogenous circumstances, where both functions could be simultaneously disturbed. For this purpose, a co-administration of reserpine and haloperidol, a dopamine granule depletor combined with a dopamine antagonist with pronounced ulcerogenic effect, was tested, and the rats were sacrificed 24 h after injurious agent(s) administration. Haloperidol (5 mg x kg(-1) b.w. i.p.), given alone, produced the lesions in all rats. Reserpine (5 mg x kg(-1) b.w. i.p.), given separately, also produced lesions. When these agents were given together, the lesions were apparently larger than in the groups injured with separate administration of either haloperidol or reserpine alone. Along with our previous results, when beneficial agents were co-administered, all dopaminomimetics (bromocriptine 10 mg, apomophine 1 mg, amphetamine 20 mg x kg(-1) i.p.) apparently attenuated the otherwise consistent haloperidol-gastric lesions. Likewise, an apparent inhibition of the reserpine-lesions was noted as well. However, if they were given in rats injured with combination of haloperidol and reserpine, their otherwise prominent beneficial effects were absent. Ranitidine (10 mg), omeprazole (10 mg), atropine (10 mg), pentadecapeptide BPC 157 (Gly-Glu-Pro-Pro-Pro-Gly-Lys-Pro-Ala-Asp-Asp-Ala-Gly-Leu-Val) (10 microg or 10 ng x kg(-1) i.p.) evidently prevented both haloperidol-gastric lesions and reserpine-gastric lesions. Confronted with potentiated lesions following a combination of haloperidol and reserpine, these agents maintained their beneficial effects, noted in the rats treated with either haloperidol or reserpine alone. The failure of dopaminomimetics could be most likely due to more extensive inhibition of endogenous dopamine system activity, and need for remained endogenous dopamine for their salutary effect, whereas the beneficial activities of ranitidine, omeprazole, atropine, pentadecapeptide BPC 157 following dopamine system inhibition by haloperidol+reserpine suggest their corresponding systems parallel those of dopamine system, and they may function despite extensive inhibition of endogenous dopamine system activity.
The 15 amino acid agent BPC 157, showing a wide range of organoprotective action in different experimental models, was used in our experiments in order to establish its influence on different elements connected with the healing process. Elements thought to be of greatest importance in the process of healing are formation of granulation tissue, angiogenesis and production of collagen. In our work we tested the influence of BPC 157 on: granulation tissue and collagen formation, on angiogenesis as well as on tensile strength development, using three experimental rat models: 1) skin incisional wounds; 2) colon-colon anastomoses; and 3) angiogenesis model with synthetic sponge implantation. The specimens were histologically assessed for collagen, reticulin and blood vessels using scoring and morphometry. In all experiments significant differences between BPC 157-treated animals and controls were found, showing a strong, promoting involvement of BPC in the healing process. It is worth noting that these effects were achieved by different routes of application, including intragastric and local, making BPC 157 a potentially useful therapeutic agent.
Various antidepressants have antiulcer activity. Likewise, the models currently used in ulcers and depression disorders research have a considerable degree of similarity. Therefore, the possibility that depression disorders could be effectively influenced by a primary antiulcer agent with a cyto/organoprotective activity, such as the novel stomach pentadecapeptide BPC 157, was investigated in two rat depression assays. First, a forced swimming test (a Porsolt's procedure) was used. As a more severe procedure, chronic unpredictable stress (after 5 d of unpredictable stress protocol, once daily drug application during stress procedure, open field-immobility test assessment at fourth or sixth day of medication) was used. In a forced swimming test, a reduction of the immobility time in BPC 157 (10 microg, 10 ng x kg(-1) i.p.) treated rats corresponds to the activity of the 15 mg or 40 mg (i.p.) of conventional antidepressants, imipramine or nialamide, respectively, given according to the original Porsolt's protocol. In chronic unpredictable stress procedure, particular aggravation of experimental conditions markedly affected the conventional antidepressant activity, whereas BPC 157 effectiveness was continuously present. The effect of daily imipramine (30 mg) medication could be seen only after a more prolonged period, but not after a shorter period (i.e., 4-d protocol). In these conditions, no delay in the effectiveness was noted in BPC 157 medication and a reduction of the immobility of chronically stressed rats was noted after both 4 and 6 d of BPC 157 (10 microg, 10 ng) medication.
A diabetogenic alloxan regimen produced lesions in all stomachs of treated animals, either rats (200 mg x kg(-1) s.c.) or mice (400 mg x kg(-1) i.p.). In control animals, the lesions, when developed (i.e. 24 h following application), appear to be quite sustained, and consistently present also after 1 or 2 weeks. The application of the pentadecapeptide BPC 157 (10 microg or 10 ng x kg(-1) i.p. coadministered together with alloxan) would significantly attenuate these lesions' appearance. This beneficial effect seems to be present in either rats or mice and in either of the tested intervals. Importantly, the beneficial effect seems to be shared by both microgram and nanogram regimens.
Besides a superior protection of the pentadecapeptide BPC 157 (an essential fragment of an organoprotective gastric juice peptide BPC) against different gastrointestinal and liver lesions, an acute anti-inflammatory and analgetic activity was also noted. Consequently, its effect on chronic inflammation lesions, such as adjuvant arthritis, and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agents (NSAIAs)-induced gastrointestinal lesions was simultaneously studied in rats. In gastrointestinal lesions (indomethacin (30 mg/kg s.c.), aspirin (400 mg/kg i.g.) and diclofenac (125 mg/kg i.p.) studies, BPC 157 (10 micrograms or 10 ng/kg i.p.) was regularly given simultaneously and/or 1 h prior to drug application (indomethacin). In the adjuvant arthritis (tail-application of 0.2 mL of Freund's adjuvant) studies (14 days, 30 days, 1 year) BPC 157 (10 micrograms or 10 ng/kg i.p.), it was given as a single application (at 1 h either before or following the application of Freund's adjuvant) or in a once daily regimen (0-14th day, 14-30th day, 14th day-1 year). Given with the investigated NSAIAs, BPC 157 consistently reduced the otherwise prominent lesions in the stomach of the control rats, as well as the lesions in the small intestine in the indomethacin groups. In the adjuvant arthritis studies, the lesion's development seems to be considerably reduced after single pentadecapeptide medication, and even more attenuated in rats daily treated with BPC 157. As a therapy of already established adjuvant arthritis, its salutary effect consistently appeared already after 2 weeks of medication and it could be clearly seen also after 1 year of application. Taking together all these results, the data likely point to a special anti-inflammatory and mucosal integrity protective effect.
Recently, the effectiveness of pentadecapeptide BPC 157 and other anti-ulcer agents, called 'direct cytoprotection', was evidenced in totally gastrectomized rats duodenum challenged with cysteamine 24 h after surgery, and sacrificed 24 h after ulcerogen application. The further focus was on the possibility that this effect could be seen over a more prolonged period (1, 2, 4 weeks), and in other parts of the gastrointestinal tract (i.e. oesophagus). After the removal of the stomach, the oesophagus and jejunum were joined by a termino-lateral anastomosis. The animals were euthanized 7, 14 or 28 d after surgery, when oesophagitis was blindly assessed both macroscopically (percentage of ulcerations areas) and microscopically (percentage of areas of ulcers, regeneration and hyperplasia; number of inflammatory cells - polymorphonuclear and mononuclear). Starting 24 h after surgery, the medication was continuously given in the drinking water, in a volume of 12.5 mL/rat daily, until euthanasia at the end of the observation period, i.e. 7, 14, 28 d following surgery. Based on previous experiments, the doses of agents were daily calculated per kg b.w. as follows: BPC 157 125 mg or 125 ng, cholestyramine 2.5 mg, ranitidine 125 mg, sucralfate 725 mg, whereas controls received 72.5 mL x kg(-1) water. In support of these initial findings, and considering gastrectomized acid-free rats as an ideal model for long-term cytoprotective studies as well, pentadecapeptide BPC 157 markedly attenuated termino-lateral oesophagojejunal anastomosis-reflux oesophagitis also over a quite prolonged period. This efficacy was only partly shared by other anti-ulcer agents. After 1-week-old oesophagitis (microscopical assessment), but not after 2 or 4 weeks, less damaged mucosa was noted in rats drinking ranitidine or sucralfate compared to controls. Similar effectiveness was noted for cholestyramine. The obtained results were supported also by inflammatory cell assessment. Compared with control values, BPC 157-treated groups consistently presented less polymorphonuclears and less mononuclears in all assessed periods. Interestingly, the values obtained in other treated groups showed no difference compared with control values. Thus, despite limitations, a generalization supporting a direct importance of a common cytoprotective approach, could be clearly provided. A useful, long-lasting cytoprotective activity (apparently more prominent in BPC 157 rats, than in reference agents, ranitidine, sucralfate, as well as cholestyramine) may be a likely suitable therapy in otherwise resistant reflux oesophagitis conditions.
A clear protection of the gastrointestinal tract and an evident anti-inflammatory effect were shown for a novel stomach pentadecapeptide BPC 157 (i.p./i.g.) in comparison with several reference standards in various ulcer models along with a protection of endothelium and particular interaction with the NO-system. Thus, we evaluated whether this pentadecapeptide along with other gastroprotective agents could affect angiogenesis and the healing process in vivo using a procedure initially described by Szabo and co-workers. In each rat, two sterile sponges (1 x 1 x 0.25 cm; V = 0.25 mL) with the same quantities of BPC 157 (10 ng x mL(-1), 10 microg x mL(-1), 50 microg x kg(-1)) or reference agents (cimetidine: 10, 100, 500 mg x mL(-1); ranitidine: 2.5, 25, 250 mg x mL(-1); famotidine: 10, 50, 100 mg x mL(-1); omeprazole: 10, 50, 100 mg x mL(-1); sucralfate: 1, 5, 10 mg x mL(-1) were implanted subcutaneously in the lumbar region. The sponges were removed after 3 or 7 d, fixed in formalin, and processed for histologic and histochemical evaluation and morphometry assessment. Compared with the control values, the number of newly formed endothelial spaces inside newly formed granulation tissue was markedly increased in all animals treated with BPC 157, cimetidine, ranitidine, famotidine, sucralfate and omeprazole, a consistent finding noted after either 3 or 7 d. Compared with control values, markedly more granulation tissue was noted in the rats in the groups of animals treated with BPC 157 (50 microg) and in the rats treated with sucralfate in all dosages used, euthanized after 3 d. In all groups treated with H2-blockers however, similar values to those of controls were noted. Thus, it could be concluded that an evident angiogenic property was consistently noted for the novel pentadecapeptide BPC 157, H2-blockers (cimetidine, famotidine and ranitidine) and omeprazole, besides the well known angiogenic effect of sucralfate. Furthermore, unlike H2-blockers and omeprazole, BPC 157 stimulates the formation of granulation tissue, suggesting a particular activity, similar to that previously noted for sucralfate.
The two hallmark lesions of Alzheimer's disease (AD) are extracellular amyloid plaques, mainly formed by a small peptide called amyloid-beta (Abeta), and neurofibrillary tangles, which are intracellular inclusions formed by aggregates of hyperphosphorylated tau protein. One of the major neurochemical features of AD is the marked reduction of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in disease-relevant brain regions such as the cerebral cortex and hippocampus. This loss is further compounded by the loss of cholinergic cells, which contributes to the cognitive dysfunction. This observation has had a major impact on therapeutic treatments, as efforts to restore cholinergic function such as the administration of acetylcholinesterase inhibitors have been, until recently, the major treatment options available for AD. Understanding the relationship of these hallmark lesions with the plethora of other changes that occur in the AD brain has proven to be a difficult challenge to resolve. The utilization of transgenic mouse models, that recapitulate one or more neuropathological and neurochemical features of the AD brain is providing some inroads, as they offer a means to gain mechanistic insights into the disease process in an in vivo setting. In this review, we consider the role of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in transgenic models and in AD.
On May 10th 2010 Platon Grigorevitch Kostyuk sadly left us at the age of 85. He was a talented scientist, a brilliant experimenter, an outstanding organizer of science and an excellent teacher. Platon Kostyuk was born in 1924 in Kiev, Ukraine. He obtained a double education: a graduate of the Kiev University Department of Biology in 1946 and the Kiev Medical Institute in 1949, he became a pioneer in neuroscience, the first in the Soviet Union to use microelectrodes for intracellular recording of electrical signals in neurons. Despite the difficulties for international travel for those living behind the Iron Curtain, he was able to present his work at the International Congress of Physiology in Buenos Aires in 1959 and here met Prof. John Eccles who invited him to work at the University of Canberra in Australia in 1960–1961. This was the start of an outstanding international career, complementing his creative achievements in the Soviet Union. In 1966 P.G. Kostyuk became director of the Bogomoletz Institute of Physiology in Kiev, which he headed for nearly 45 years. Under his direction this Institute became a leading centre for neuroscience, renowned not only in the Soviet Union but also internationally. New directions of research were developed in cell physiology, molecular biophysics and neurophysiology. Several important discoveries were made including the development of a method for intracellular perfusion, evidence for a calcium-dependent conductance in nerve cells and the discovery of new types of ion channels. Elected to the Ukraine Academy of Science in 1969 and Grand Academician of the Soviet Academy of Science in 1974, Kostyuk has also been honoured by many international societies. He is the author of more than 650 articles, 17 monographs and 7 discoveries and was the creator and editor of two scientific journals: "Neurophysiology" and "Neuroscience". The outstanding career and multifaceted activities of Academician Platon Kostyuk form a pyramid of achievement, at the top of which ride his research in cognition and his enthusiasm for the discovery of the secrets of Nature.
to present our experience in eradicating Hp in three consecutive trials performed between 1995 and 1999.
320 duodenal ulcer outpatients have been enrolled in three open, prospective controlled trials. Hp infection was confirmed by Giemsa stain and Rut. In Trial I, 52 cases received 20 mg omeprazole + 2 x 250 mg clarithromycin + 2 x 500 mg tinidazole (OCT), 48 patients were given 20 mg omeprazole, 2 x 1000 mg amoxicillin + 2 x 500 mg metronidazole (OAM) for 7 days; in Trial II, 48 cases received 40 mg pantoprazole + 2 x 1000 mg amoxicillin + 2 x 500 mg clarithromycin (PAC) for 7 days and 5l cases 2 x 400 mg ranitidin bismuth citrate + 2 x 500 mg clarithromycin for 14 days (RBC-C); in Trial III, 60 cases were treated with 2 x 30 mg lansoprazole + 2 x 250 mg clarithromycin + 2 x 500 mg metronidazole and 6l patients received 2 x 400 mg ranitidin bismuth citrate+2 x 250 mg clarithromycin + 2 x 500 mg metronidazole (RBC-CM). The patients were controlled within 4-6 weeks by endoscopy in trials I-II and 13C-urea breath test in trial III.
Eradication rates on ITT/PP basis were: OCT: 72.3/80.2% vs OAM 51.2/63.5% (P = 0.02/P = 0.03); PAC: 80.8/88.3% vs RBC-C 80.3/85.4% (P = 0.65/0.67) and LCM 78.3/92.1% vs RBC-CM 78.7/90.5% (P = 0.86/P = 0.93). Side effects occurred in 5.2, 8.6, 9.5, 14.5, 13.5 and 18.3% of the cases.
Regimens using 2 x l PPI or RBC + 2 antibiotics for l week proved to be the most effective for Hp eradication in duodenal ulcer patients.
In primates, tracking eye movements help vision by stabilising onto the retinas the images of a moving object of interest. This sensorimotor transformation involves several stages of motion processing, from the local measurement of one-dimensional luminance changes up to the integration of first and higher-order local motion cues into a global two-dimensional motion immune to antagonistic motions arising from the surrounding. The dynamics of this surface motion segmentation is reflected into the various components of the tracking responses and its underlying neural mechanisms can be correlated with behaviour at both single-cell and population levels. I review a series of behavioural studies which demonstrate that the neural representation driving eye movements evolves over time from a fast vector average of the outputs of linear and non-linear spatio-temporal filtering to a progressive and slower accurate solution for global motion. Because of the sensitivity of earliest ocular following to binocular disparity, antagonistic visual motion from surfaces located at different depths are filtered out. Thus, global motion integration is restricted within the depth plane of the object to be tracked. Similar dynamics were found at the level of monkey extra-striate areas MT and MST and I suggest that several parallel pathways along the motion stream are involved albeit with different latencies to build-up this accurate surface motion representation. After 200-300 ms, most of the computational problems of early motion processing (aperture problem, motion integration, motion segmentation) are solved and the eye velocity matches the global object velocity to maintain a clear and steady retinal image.
Studies on the genetic forms of epilepsy, chronic pain, and migraine caused by mutations in ion channels have given crucial insights into the molecular mechanisms, pathogenesis, and therapeutic approaches to complex neurological disorders. In this review we focus on the role of mutated CaV2.1 (i.e., P/Q-type) voltage-activated Ca2+ channels, and on the ultimate consequences that mutations causing familial hemiplegic migraine type-1 (FHM1) have in neurotransmitter release. Transgenic mice harboring the human pathogenic FHM1 mutation R192Q or S218L (KI) have been used as models to study neurotransmission at several central and peripheral synapses. FHM1 KI mice are a powerful tool to explore presynaptic regulation associated with expression of CaV2.1 channels. Mutated CaV2.1 channels activate at more hyperpolarizing potentials and lead to a gain-of-function in synaptic transmission. This gain-of-function might underlie alterations in the excitatory/ inhibitory balance of synaptic transmission, favoring a persistent state of hyperexcitability in cortical neurons that would increase the susceptibility for cortical spreading depression (CSD), a mechanism believed to initiate the attacks of migraine with aura.
It is accepted that eradication of Helicobacter pylori leads to healing of chronic active gastritis facilitates ulcer healing and prevents ulcer recurrence in duodenal ulcer (DU) patients. However, it is not entirely known whether the eradication of the bacteria normalizes gastric acid secretion and abolishes dyspeptic symptoms after ulcer healing. This study was aimed to evaluate the intragastric acidity and dyspeptic complaints before, and 3 months after, eradication in 18 endoscopically proven H. pylori positive DU patients. Gastric pH was measured by 24-h continuous intraluminal recording, serum gastrin measurements and Congo-red tests were also performed. Dyspeptic complaints and antacid consumptions were recorded in diary cards, antisecretory therapy was not allowed after the cessation of eradication therapy. Endoscopy, H. pylori status and Congo-red tests were controlled at the 6th and 12th week, while pH measurements and serum gastrin tests were performed at inclusion and 3 months later. Three patients dropped out and in 14 out of the remaining subjects healing of DUs and successful eradications were achieved by the 6th and 12th week controls. The 24-h median pH and the percentage of 24-h pH readings under pH 3 were not changing significantly by the 3-month controls (from 1.9±0.5 to 1.8±0.4 and from 52.6±5.5% to 58.6±5%, respectively). Similary, no significant changes were observed in serum gastrin levels and dyspeptic symptom scores (from 72±7 pg/ml to 56.7±8 pg/ml and from 2.69±0.4 to 1.26±0.3, respectively). The antacid consumption was almost stable when compared with the pre- and post-eradication periods. It was concluded that despite successful H. pylori eradication and healing of DU, intragastric acidity does not change significantly at least 3 months after the therapy. The persisting dyspeptic symptoms and the need for antacid consumption suggest that some healed ulcer patients require antisecretory therapy in the post-eradication period.
Synaptic plasticity following NMDA application on hippocampal slices from young (3-5 months) and aged (24-27 months) rats was compared. In young rats, NMDA (20 microM) induced opposite effects depending on the duration of the application. A short (1 min) or long (5 min) application induced a long-term depression of synaptic activity while a 3 min application induced a potentiation. In aged rats, however, NMDA application always induced depression, regardless of the duration. To identify mechanisms which could explain the difference observed between young and aged rats, we explored changes in NMDA receptor activation and changes in kinase/phosphatase balance. We first demonstrate that the potentiation present in slices from young rats was not restored in aged rats by exogenous application of the co-agonist of NMDA receptor d-serine (which compensates for the changes in NMDAR activation seen in aged rats). This suggested that alterations in synaptic plasticity activation mainly involve intracellular mechanisms. We next showed that the participation of the kinases PKA and CaMKII in the NMDA-induced potentiation in young rats is negligible. Finally, we determined the consequences of phosphatase inhibition in aged rats. Incubation of slices in okadaic acid (a PP1/PP2B antagonist) did not affect the depression induced by a 3min NMDA application in aged rats. The PP2B antagonist FK506 restored potentiation in aged rats (3 min NMDA application). In hippocampal neurons from aged rats, a depression is always observed, suggesting a preferential activation of PP2B by NMDA in these neurons.
We analysed the early visual responses of relay cells of the dorsal part of cat lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN) for the occurrence and characteristics of high-frequency (>300 Hz) spike patterns comparable to the high-frequency oscillations (HFO) found in the human somatosensory system. By using a special algorithm for correcting response latency, we can show that the vast majority of dLGN visual responses which were elicited by a sudden change in contrast show HFOs in the range of 300 to more than 800 Hz. After response time correction these HFOs are clearly visible in summed responses, indicating that these patterns are highly reproducible by identical stimuli. On this basis we analysed the HFOs in more detail. We found the oscillation frequency to increase with stimulus contrast and the area of the receptive field centre covered by an excitatory stimulus. Inhibition reduces the oscillation frequency as demonstrated with additional stimulation of the antagonistic surround of the receptive field and by blocking inhibition with micro-iontophoretical application of bicuculline methiodide. The HFO was almost independent of the state of the system as estimated from the EEG pattern. Based on these findings we discuss whether bursts of action potentials triggered by the low-threshold calcium spike (LTS) can contribute to this pattern of visual thalamic activity.