Medical Technology SA - Volume 22, Issue 2, 2008
Volume 22, Issue 2, 2008
Author Johann SchneiderSource: Medical Technology SA 22 (2008)More Less
As the traditional custodians of research, higher educational institutions have played for centuries a central role in the creation of new information and knowledge; the search for solutions to particular challenges; and the innovation to change and to improve our world. Global socioeconomic changes over the past decades resulted in a growing need for applied- and action research to address specific issues that are often linked to commercial demands.
Author Frederick J. VeldmanSource: Medical Technology SA 22, pp 3 –6 (2008)More Less
Fibrinogen is an important risk factor for atherosclerosis, stroke and cardiovascular disease (CVD). This risk is increased when associated with high serum cholesterol, increased blood pressure, obesity and smoking. However, it is also believed that not only the fibrinogen itself, but also the quality of resultant fibrin networks may be a predisposing risk factor for the development of CVD. Changes in the fibrin network architecture are caused by changes in the fibrin polymerisation conditions in the blood. Kinetic and modulating factors determine polymerisation conditions. The kinetic factors are thrombin and fibrinogen concentrations. The modulating factors affect the fibrin structures independent of the kinetic factors. Such factors include all biochemical and physical properties of the direct surrounding within which the circulating fibrinogen molecule finds itself. Current literature describes only the concentration of the circulating plasma fibrinogen to have predictive value for CVD. The main aim of this article is to present a hypothesis that provides a novel way of looking at fibrinogen related CVD risk. We will refer to this hypothesis as the Collective Risk Hypothesis, in which it is postulated that the fibrin network architecture provides a better estimate of CVD risk than just plasma fibrinogen concentration. The fibrin network architecture depends not only on the fibrinogen concentration alone, but also on the collective effect of all other chemical and physical interactions within its direct environment (the modulating factors), which also includes that of the other more established independent CVD risk factors, such as LDL-C, glucose and smoking. This model provides the potential for additional laboratory analysis to establish CVD risk by means of fibrin network architecture analyses, in addition to providing a valuable tool for prevention, diagnosis and monitoring of patients with CVD.
Source: Medical Technology SA 22, pp 7 –14 (2008)More Less
Background: Fumonisin B1 (FB1) and Zearalenone (ZEA) are secondary metabolites produced by the fungi species Fusarium. This study aimed to investigate the structural and cellular responses of wounded cells that have been exposed to ZEA and FB1.
Materials and Methods: Two diode lasers with wavelengths of 636 and 830 nm at a dose of 5 J/cm2 were used to irradiate WS1 cells that had been wounded and exposed to ZEA or FB1. After a repair time of 24 hr, cellular responses were deliberated.
Results: Morphologically, irradiation at 636 nm 830 nm caused marked wound migration in wounded FB1 cells. There was an increase in percentage viability in 636 nm irradiated FB1 test group, and the 636 nm irradiated ZEA test group showed an increase in ATP. The LDH results showed that ZEA exposed cells have a higher cytotoxicity than wounded cells.
Conclusion: These results indicate that 5 J/cm2 of laser irradiation can positively affect cells exposed to the mycotoxins ZEA and FB1 by increasing cell viability.
Source: Medical Technology SA 22, pp 15 –17 (2008)More Less
The quantification of functional Factor VIII (FVIII) levels is used for the diagnosis of patients with Haemophilia A. The most popular method for FVIII quantification is the one-stage FVIII assay. However, there are limitations to this method, for instance the presence of traces of active intermediates may shorten the clotting time and record spuriously high levels of FVIII. Similarly the presence of inhibitors may prolong the clotting time and record spuriously low levels of FVIII. Another disadvantage of the one-stage method is the need for a reagent totally deficient in FVIII. Mutations of the FVIII molecule have also been described that cause falsely elevated results using the one-stage assay. The two-stage method overcomes these limitations. We modified a manual two-stage method to a semi-automated one and evaluated it by testing its reproducibility and sensitivity to low levels of FVIII. This modification made the two-stage method less labour intensive and more time efficient; drawbacks that made the two-stage method unpopular in the past. The semi-automated method is also easier to implement in under-equipped laboratories than automated methods which require expensive automated coagulation instruments. We conclude that the semi-automated method gives reproducible results and is sensitive for low levels of FVIII. We recommend its use in certain circumstances and not to replace the one-stage method as a screening test for Haemophilia A.