Expression of nitric oxide synthase in inflammatory bowel disease is not affected by corticosteroid treatment.
AIM: To examine the effect of corticosteroid treatment on the expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) in the colon of patients with inflammatory bowel disease. METHODS: Four groups of patients were studied: (1) ulcerative colitis treated with high dose corticosteroids (six patients, 10 blocks); (2) ulcerative colitis patients who had never received corticosteroids (10 patients, 16 blocks); (3) Crohn's disease treated with high dose corticosteroids (12 patients, 24 blocks); (4) Non-inflammatory, non-neoplastic controls (four patients, six blocks). Full thickness paraffin sections of colons removed at surgery were immunostained with an antibody raised against the C terminal end of iNOS. Sections were assessed semiquantitatively for the presence and degree of inflammation and immunoreactivity for nitric oxide synthase. RESULTS: Cases of ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease with active inflammation showed strong staining for nitric oxide synthase. The staining was diffuse in ulcerative colitis and patchy in Crohn's disease, in accordance with the distribution of active inflammation. Staining was seen in epithelial cells and was most intense near areas of inflammation such as crypt abscesses. Non-inflamed epithelium showed no immunoreactivity. Treatment with corticosteroids made no difference to the amount of nitric oxide synthase. CONCLUSIONS: Expression of nitric oxide synthase is increased in both ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease and appears to be unaffected by treatment with corticosteroids. Disease severity necessitated surgery in all the cases included in this study, regardless of whether or not the patients had received long term corticosteroid treatment. It seems therefore that a high level of iNOS expression and, presumably, production of nitric oxide characterise cases which are refractory to clinical treatment; this suggests that specific inhibition of the enzyme may be a useful therapeutic adjunct. (+info)
Macrophage plasminogen activator: induction by asbestos is blocked by anti-inflammatory steroids.
Intraperitoneal injection of asbestos fibres into mice induces the formation of exudates containing macrophages that produce plasminogen activator. Like-wise, in vitro addition of asbestos to macrophage cultures stimulates plasminogen activator secretion; the synthesis and secretion of lysozyme and lysosomal enzymes are not changed under these conditions. The enhanced secretion of plasminogen activator by macrophages exposed to asbestos is suppressed by low concentrations of anti-inflammatory steroids. (+info)
Pharmacological studies on root bark of mulberry tree (Morus alba L.)
Pharmacological studies were done on the root bark of mulberry tree and pharmacological effects were compared with the clinical effects of "Sohakuhi" in Chinese medicine. n-Butanol- and water-soluble fractions of mulberry root had similar effects except for those on the cadiovascular system. Both fractions showed cathartic, analgesic, diuretic, antitussive, antiedema, sedative, anticonvulsant, and hypotensive actions in mice, rats, guinea pigs and dogs. There appears to be a correlation between the experimental pharmacological results and the clinical applications of mulberry root found in the literature on Chinese medicine. (+info)
Analysis of Chinese herbal creams prescribed for dermatological conditions.
OBJECTIVE: To determine whether Chinese herbal creams used for the treatment of dermatological conditions contain steroids. DESIGN: 11 herbal creams obtained from patients attending general and paediatric dermatology outpatient clinics were analysed with high resolution gas chromatography and mass spectrometry. SETTING: Departments of dermatology and clinical biochemistry. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE: Presence of steroid. RESULTS: Eight creams contained dexamethasone at a mean concentration of 456 micrograms/g (range 64 to 1500 micrograms/g). All were applied to areas of sensitive skin such as face and flexures. CONCLUSION: Greater regulation needs to be imposed on Chinese herbalists to prevent illegal and inappropriate prescribing of potent steroids. (+info)
Characteristics of spontaneous erythema appeared in hairless rats.
The hairless rat (WBN/Kob-Ht), a dominant mutant rat derived from the Wistar strain, rarely develops spontaneous erythema of a progressive nature on its skin. Erythema was first observed at 8 weeks of age and the incidence at 20 weeks of age was about 4% in both males and females. Histopathologically, erythema was characterised by dermatitis induced by an immunological reaction. Areas of erythema in the skin were decreased by treatment with dexamethasone (1 mg/kg) or ciclosporin (25 or 50 mg/kg). These results suggested that erythema on the hairless rat could be used as an animal model of spontaneous dermatitis. (+info)
Topical psoriasis therapy.
Psoriasis is a common dermatosis, affecting from 1 to 3 percent of the population. Until recently, the mainstays of topical therapy have been corticosteroids, tars, anthralins and keratolytics. Recently, however, vitamin D analogs, a new anthralin preparation and topical retinoids have expanded physicians' therapeutic armamentarium. These new topical therapies offer increased hope and convenience to the large patient population with psoriasis. (+info)
Altered leucocyte trafficking and suppressed tumour necrosis factor alpha release from peripheral blood monocytes after intra-articular glucocorticoid treatment.
OBJECTIVES: A generalised transient improvement may follow intra-articular administration of glucocorticoids to patients with inflammatory arthropathy. This may represent a systemic anti-inflammatory effect of glucocorticoid released from the joint, mediated through processes such as altered leucocyte trafficking or suppressed release of pro-inflammatory cytokines. Patients, who had received intra-articular injections of glucocorticoids were therefore studied for evidence of these two systemic effects. METHODS: Patients with rheumatoid arthritis were studied. Peripheral blood leucocyte counts, tumour necrosis factor alpha (TNF alpha) release by peripheral blood monocytes, blood cortisol concentrations, and blood methylprednisolone concentration were measured for 96 hours after intra-articular injection of methylprednisolone acetate. RESULTS: Measurable concentrations of methylprednisolone were present in blood for up to 96 hours after injection. Significant suppression of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis persisted throughout this time. Altered monocyte and lymphocyte trafficking, as evidenced by peripheral blood monocytopenia and lymphopenia, was apparent by four hours after injection and resolved in concordance with the elimination of methylprednisolone. Granulocytosis was observed at 24 and 48 hours. Release of TNF alpha by endotoxin stimulated peripheral blood monocytes was suppressed at four hours and thereafter. Suppression was maximal at eight hours and was largely reversed by the glucocorticoid antagonist, mifepristone. CONCLUSIONS: After intra-articular injection of methylprednisolone, blood concentrations of glucocorticoid are sufficient to suppress monocyte TNF alpha release for at least four days and to transiently alter leucocyte trafficking. These effects help to explain the transient systemic response to intra-articular glucocorticoids. Suppression of TNF alpha is principally a direct glucocorticoid effect, rather than a consequence of other methylprednisolone induced changes to blood composition. (+info)
A comparative study of the effects of ketotifen, disodium cromoglycate, and beclomethasone dipropionate on bronchial mucosa and asthma symptoms in patients with atopic asthma.
Asthma is a chronic inflammatory disorder of the airways that is characterized by infiltration of many inflammatory cells into the bronchial mucosa. We compared the effects of ketotifen, disodium cromoglycate (DSCG), and beclomethasone dipropionate (BDP) on inflammatory cells in the bronchial mucosa and on the asthma symptoms of patients with atopic asthma. In this 12-week parallel study, 32 patients were randomly allocated to either the ketotifen group (2 mg day-1, n = 13), DSCG group (8 mg day-1, n = 9) or BDP (400 micrograms day-1, n = 10). Each subject recorded daily asthma symptoms and peak expiratory flow (PEF). Before and after treatment, pulmonary function and bronchial responsiveness to methacholine were evaluated, and fibreoptic bronchoscopy and biopsy were performed before and after treatment. Biopsy specimens were obtained by bronchoscopy. We performed immunohistochemistry using specific monoclonal antibodies for activated eosinophils (EG2), mast cells (AA1), and T cells (CD3, CD4, and CD8). Our clinical findings showed significant improvement in symptom score and bronchial responsiveness (P < 0.01) each) in all groups. Both the DSCG and the BDP groups had significantly better symptom scores than the ketotifen group (P < 0.05, both groups). PEF significantly increased in the DSCG group in comparison to the ketotifen (P < 0.01) and BDP (P < 0.05) groups, FEV1% increased significantly in the DSCG (P < 0.01) and BDP (P < 0.05) groups in comparison to the ketotifen group. Compared with their baseline values, treatment significantly decreased EG2+ activated eosinophils, and CD3+ and CD4+ T cells, in each group (P < 0.01). Both the DSCG (P < 0.05) and the BDP groups (P < 0.01) exhibited significant decreases in AA1+ mast cell count, but this was not observed in the ketotifen group. Comparing before- and after-treatment values, only the DSCG group exhibited a significant decrease in the number of CD8+ T cells (P < 0.01). Ketotifen, DSCG, and BDP all showed anti-inflammatory activity as determined by examination of the bronchial mucosa of asthmatic patients; and both the DSCG and BDP groups had better clinical responses than the ketotifen group. (+info)