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(1/2045) Constitutional, biochemical and lifestyle correlates of fibrinogen and factor VII activity in Polish urban and rural populations.

BACKGROUND: Fibrinogen and factor VII activity are known to be related to atherosclerosis and coronary heart disease, but population differences in clotting factors and modifiable characteristics that influence their levels have not been widely explored. METHODS: This paper examines correlates of plasma fibrinogen concentration and factor VII activity in 2443 men and women aged 35-64 in random samples selected from the residents in two districts in urban Warsaw (618 men and 651 women) and from rural Tarnobrzeg Province (556 men and 618 women) screened in 1987-1988, and assesses which characteristics might explain urban-rural differences. Fibrinogen and factor VII activity were determined using coagulation methods. RESULTS: Fibrinogen was 12.9 mg/dl higher in men and 14.1 mg/dl higher in women in Tarnobrzeg compared to Warsaw. Factor VII activity was higher in Warsaw (9.2% in men and 15.3% in women). After adjustment for selected characteristics, fibrinogen was higher in smokers compared to non-smokers by 28 mg/dl in men and 22 mg/dl in women. In women, a 15 mg/dl increase in HDL-cholesterol was associated with a 10 mg/dl decrease in fibrinogen (P < 0.01). After adjustment for other variables, a higher factor VII activity in Warsaw remained significant (a difference of 9.4% in men and 14.8% in women). Lower fibrinogen in Warsaw remained significant only in women (15.4 mg/dl difference). CONCLUSIONS: The study confirmed that sex, age, BMI, smoking and blood lipids are related to clotting factors. However, with the exception of gender differences and smoking, associations between clotting factors and other variables were small and of questionable practical importance.  (+info)

(2/2045) Spontaneous heterosis in larval life-history traits of hemiclonal frog hybrids.

European water frog hybrids Rana esculenta (Rana ridibunda x Rana lessonae) reproduce hemiclonally, transmitting only their ridibunda genome to gametes. We compared fitness-related larval life-history traits of natural R. esculenta from Poland with those of the two sympatric parental species and of newly generated F1 hybrids. Compared with either parental species, F1 hybrid offspring had higher survival, higher early growth rates, a more advanced developmental stage by day 49, and earlier metamorphosis, but similar mass at metamorphosis. R. esculenta from natural lineages had trait values intermediate between those of F1 offspring and of the two parental species. The data support earlier observations on natural R. esculenta that had faster larval growth, earlier metamorphosis, and higher resistance to hypoxic conditions compared with either parental species. Observing larval heterosis in F1 hybrids in survival, growth rate, and time to metamorphosis, however, at an even higher degree than in hybrids from natural lineages, demonstrates that heterosis is spontaneous and results from hybridity per se rather than from subsequent interclonal selection; in natural lineages the effects of hybridity and of clonal history are confounded. This is compelling evidence for spontaneous heterosis in hybrid clonals. Results on hemiclonal fish hybrids (Poeciliopsis) showed no spontaneous heterosis; thus, our frog data are not applicable to all hybrid clonals. Our data do show, however, that heterosis is an important potential source for the extensively observed ecological success of hybrid clonals. We suggest that heterosis and interclonal selection together shape fitness of natural R. esculenta lineages.  (+info)

(3/2045) Primary endometrioid carcinoma of fallopian tube. Clinicomorphologic study.

Twenty cases of primary Fallopian tube endometrioid carcinoma (PFTEC) are presented in the paper. This accounts for 42.5% of all histologic forms of primary Fallopian tube carcinoma (PFTC) found in our Department. The youngest patient was 38, and the oldest 68 years (mean: 56 years). Seven patients were nulliparas. Only two cases were bilateral. According to FIGO staging, 13 cases were evaluated as stage I, 4 as II, and 3 as stage III. Due to the histologic grading, 8 tumors were classified as well, 7 as moderately, and 5 as poorly differentiated. In the time of preparation of the manuscript, 12 women were still alive, 2 of them with recurrent disease. The follow-up of patients without recurrence ranged from 4 to 120 months (median: 63). Eight patients had died (survival time: from 4 to 65 months; median: 26). Metastases were found in 8 patients, especially to ovaries. In 14/20 cases of PFTEC various forms of tubal wall invasion were observed. Blood or lymphatic vessels involvement was found in 9 patients. Six of them had died and one is alive with the symptoms of disease. Immunohistochemical detection of the mutant form of p53 protein and oncogene product, c-erbB-2, was studied in 17 cases. Nine patients exhibited simultaneous p53 protein accumulation and c-erbB-2 expression. 2/9 of these patients are alive with recurrent tumors and 4/9 died. Endometrioid carcinoma of the Fallopian tube can be characterized by a tendency to superficial invasion of tubal wall and in a half of the cases by invasion of vessels. The majority of these tumors were diagnosed at an early stage tumors.  (+info)

(4/2045) Multidrug-resistant Streptococcus pneumoniae in Poland: identification of emerging clones.

Penicillin resistance among Streptococcus pneumoniae isolates has rapidly emerged in Poland during the last decade and has reached prevalence levels of up to 14.4% in 1997. In order to investigate the nature of this increase, a molecular epidemiological analysis of non-penicillin-susceptible multidrug-resistant pneumococci isolated in 1995 and 1996 was conducted. Thirty-seven patients who suffered mainly from upper respiratory tract infections and pneumococcal pneumonia were enrolled in this study. The medical centers to which the patients were admitted were located in 16 Polish towns across the country. Eight distinct BOX PCR types were observed, representing 14 subtypes. Restriction fragment end labeling (RFEL) analysis divided the pneumococcal strains into 16 distinct types. By combining the BOX PCR and RFEL data, four genetically distinct clusters of strains were identified. Two clusters represented the genetic clones 23F and 9V, which have recently emerged all over the world. The two other genetic clusters, which represented serotypes 23F and 6B, clearly predominated in the analyzed collection of Polish non-penicillin-susceptible pneumococcal strains. Since the latter clusters did not match any of the 133 RFEL types of non-penicillin-susceptible pneumococci collected in 15 other countries, their Polish clonal origin is most likely.  (+info)

(5/2045) Molecular epidemiologic research on the effects of environmental pollutants on the fetus.

Evidence shows that fetuses and infants are more affected than adults by a variety of environmental toxicants because of differential exposure, physiologic immaturity, and a longer lifetime over which disease initiated in early life can develop. In this article we review data on the effects of in utero exposure to common environmental contaminants, including polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH), particulate matter and environmental tobacco smoke (ETS). We then summarize results from our molecular epidemiologic study to assess risks from in utero exposures to ambient air pollution and ETS. This research study, conducted in Poland, used biomarkers to measure the internal and bioeffective dose of toxicants and individual susceptibility factors. The study included 160 mothers and 160 newborns. Ambient air pollution was significantly associated (p= 0.05) with the amount of PAH bound to DNA (PAH-DNA adducts) in both maternal and infant cord white blood cells (WBC). Newborns with elevated PAH-DNA adducts (greater than the median) had significantly decreased birth weight (p= 0.05), birth length (p= 0.02), and head circumference (p= 0.0005) compared to the newborns with lower adducts (n= 135). Maternal and infant cotinine levels were increased by active and passive cigarette smoke exposure of the mother (p= 0.01). An inverse correlation was seen between newborn plasma cotinine (nanograms per milliliter) and birth weight (p= 0.0001) and length (p= 0.003). Adducts were elevated in placental tissue and WBC of newborns who were heterozygous or homozygous for the cytochrome P4501A1 MspI restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) compared to newborns without the RFLP. Levels of PAH-DNA and cotinine were higher in newborns than mothers. These results document that there is significant transplacental transfer of PAH and ETS constituents from mother to fetus; that PAH-DNA adduct levels in maternal and newborn WBC were increased with environmental exposure to PAH from ambient pollution; and that the fetus is more sensitive to genetic damage than the mother. The study also provided the first molecular evidence that transplacental PAH exposure to the fetus is compromising fetal development. If confirmed, these findings could have significant public health implications since a number of studies have found that reduction of head circumference at birth correlates with lower intelligence quotient as well as poorer cognitive functioning and school performance in childhood.  (+info)

(6/2045) Mucolipidosis type IV: the origin of the disease in the Ashkenazi Jewish population.

Mucolipidosis type IV (MLIV) is a neurodegenerative lysosomal storage disease in which most of the patients diagnosed hitherto are Ashkenazi Jews. The basic metabolic defect causing this disease is still unknown and the relevant gene has not yet been mapped or cloned. Seventeen Israel Ashkenazi families with MLIV patients had been interviewed to study their family origin. Although the families immigrated to Israel from various European countries they all could trace their roots three to four generations back to northern Poland or the immediate neighbouring country, Lithuania. Furthermore, there are only one or two ultraorthodox families among the 70-80 Ashkenazi families with MLIV patients worldwide, a marked under-representation of this group which constitutes at least 10% of the Ashkenazi population. This data indicate that MLIV mutation occurred only around the 18th and 19th centuries, after the major expansion of this population, in a founder in this defined European region belonging to a more modern, secular family.  (+info)

(7/2045) Application of the classic Limulus test and the quantitative kinetic chromogenic LAL method for evaluation of endotoxin concentration in indoor air.

The classic (gel-clot procedure) Limulus test (CLT) and the quantitative kinetic chromogenic LAL method (KQCL) used for the evaluation of bacterial endotoxin concentration in the indoor air of dwellings were compared. The scientific procedure included analyses of 40 air samples supplemented by the analysis of 20 sample duplicates (selected at random) which were taken during the fall season from 10 flats located in 3 towns of the Upper Silesian region (southern Poland). The particulate aerosol probes were sampled by Harvard impactor and Casella sampler. The same samples were analyzed in the Netherlands using the quantitative kinetic chromogenic LAL method, and in Poland using the classic Limulus test. Comparison of both methods revealed that the quantitative kinetic chromogenic LAL method was more precise, with better reproducibility (the coefficient of variation between analyses of the main probe and its duplicate was over two times smaller in the KQCL method than in the CLT method), fully automated in the phase of analysis and data reading, and faster and more effective than the classic Limulus test. Nevertheless, on the basis of the obtained results, the usefulness of the classic Limulus method for assessment of the degree of pollution of indoor air with bacterial endotoxin seems to be confirmed as in the majority of examined samples (21 out 40) the results obtained by both methods were of the same order of magnitude, and in the remaining 19 samples did exceed one order of magnitude. Thus, the data received by means of the classic Limulus test may be regarded as acceptable.  (+info)

(8/2045) Seroepidemiologic study on the occurrence of antibodies against Yersinia enterocolitica and Yersinia pseudotuberculosis in urban and rural population of the Lublin region (eastern Poland).

The aim of this study was to assess the seroprevalence of antibodies against Yersinia in the rural and urban population and to determine the frequency of particular serotypes of Yersinia enterocolitica and Yersinia pseudotuberculosis. 472 sera were examined, 257 of rural inhabitants and 215 of urban inhabitants. The survey was carried out by passive hemagglutination test with the antigens of Yersinia serotypes considered pathogenic for humans: Y. enterocolitica 03, 05, 06, 08, 09 and Y. pseudotuberculosis I and III. In the examined rural population positive reactions to Yersinia antigens were significantly more frequent than in the examined urban population (42% versus 20%, p<0.0001). The most frequent reactions were against Y. enterocolitica serotypes 05 and 08.  (+info)