Jahrestagung der Gesellschaft für Medizinische Ausbildung ; Ruhr-Universität Bochum ; 23.-25. September 2010 ; Tagungsband ; Viel verändert - viel erreicht? Bilanz und Zukunft der Studienreformen
Anti-angiogenesis in hepatocellular carcinoma treatment : current evidence and future perspectives
- Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is among the most common cancer diseases worldwide. Arterial hypervascularisation is an essential step for HCC tumorigenesis and can be targeted by transarterial chemoembolization (TACE). This interventional method is the standard treatment for patients with intermediate stage HCC, but is also applied as “bridging” therapy for patients awaiting liver transplantation in many centers worldwide. Usually the devascularization effect induced by TACE is transient, consequently resulting in repeated cycles of TACE every 4-8 wk. Despite documented survival benefits, TACE can also induce the up-regulation of proangiogenic and growth factors, which might contribute to accelerated progression in patients with incomplete response. In 2007, sorafenib, a multi-tyrosine kinase and angiogenesis inhibitor, was approved as the first systemic treatment for advanced stage HCC. Other active targeted compounds, either inhibitors of angiogenesis and/or growth factors, are currently being investigated in numerous clinical trials. To overcome revascularisation or tumor progression under TACE treatment it seems therefore attractive to combine TACE with systemic targeted agents, which might theoretically block the effects of proangiogenic and growth factors. Over the last 12 mo, several retrospecretrospective or prospective cohort studies combining TACE and sorafenib have been published. Nevertheless, robust results of the efficacy and tolerability of such combination strategies as proven by randomized, controlled trials are awaited in the next two years.
"Eingriffe in die Keimbahn sind für mich ein Tabu" : Gespräch mit dem Mediziner Hubert Serve und der Politikwissenschaftlerin Anja Karnein über die ethischen Grenzen der Zell- und Gentherapie
- Je besser Forscher es verstehen, defekte Gene zu reparieren oder beliebige Körperzellen zu reprogrammieren, desto gefahrloser wird die Gen- und Stammzell-Therapie für Patienten, die an heute noch unheilbaren Krankheiten leiden. Gleichzeitig zeichnet sich damit die Möglichkeit ab, in ferner Zukunft vielleicht das Genom kommender Generationen zu verändern oder Menschen zu klonieren. Der Internist Prof. Hubert Serve und die Politikwissenschaftlerin Dr. Anja Karnein wagen im Gespräch mit den beiden Redakteurinnen des Wissenschaftsmagazins »Forschung Frankfurt« Dr. Anne Hardy und Ulrike Jaspers einen Ausblick jenseits aller aktuellen Debatten. Sie diskutieren aber auch über die Themen, die Patienten wie Wissenschaftler zurzeit unmittelbar berühren.
Die Gentherapie kommt aus den Kinderschuhen : über beeindruckende Erfolge und die Beseitigung von Stolpersteinen
- Rückschläge werfen eine neue Technologie um Jahrzehnte zurück – besonders, wenn Menschenleben zu beklagen sind. Bei der Gentherapie wird aber oft vergessen, dass sie nur bei Patienten angewendet wird, für die es keine konventionelle Therapie mehr gibt. Nach der Euphorie und den Rückschlägen der Anfangsjahre können Forscher nun die ersten Erfolge vorweisen.
Wenn Zellen zu Medikamenten werden : neue Zelltherapien verbessern die Heilungschancen bei Leukämien
- Die Transplantation von Zellen aus dem Knochenmark oder von Stammzellen aus dem Blut gehört zu den bekanntesten Therapien bei Leukämie. Doch dabei treten Immunreaktionen als Nebenwirkung auf. Deshalb nehmen Forscher seit Kurzem auch die Transplantation bestimmter Immunzellen in den Blick. Im Labor gentechnisch aufgerüstet, werden sie zu äußerst effizienten "Krebs-Medikamenten".
Die Zeit für die Zelle zurückdrehen : Reprogrammierung als Chance für die regenerative Medizin
Harald von Melchner
- Einer der Träume der Medizin ist die Verwendung von Stammzellen als eine Art Ersatzteillager. Mit der Reprogrammierung differenzierter Zellen rückt dieser Traum, nicht abstoßbare, gesunde Organe zu erzeugen, ein Stück weiter in den Bereich des Möglichen.
Linkage between increased nociception and olfaction via a SCN9A haplotype
Bruno Georg Oertel
- Background and Aims: Mutations reducing the function of Nav1.7 sodium channels entail diminished pain perception and olfactory acuity, suggesting a link between nociception and olfaction at ion channel level. We hypothesized that if such link exists, it should work in both directions and gain-of-function Nav1.7 mutations known to be associated with increased pain perception should also increase olfactory acuity.
Methods: SCN9A variants were assessed known to enhance pain perception and found more frequently in the average population. Specifically, carriers of SCN9A variants rs41268673C>A (P610T; n = 14) or rs6746030C>T (R1150W; n = 21) were compared with non-carriers (n = 40). Olfactory function was quantified by assessing odor threshold, odor discrimination and odor identification using an established olfactory test. Nociception was assessed by measuring pain thresholds to experimental nociceptive stimuli (punctate and blunt mechanical pressure, heat and electrical stimuli).
Results: The number of carried alleles of the non-mutated SCN9A haplotype rs41268673C/rs6746030C was significantly associated with the comparatively highest olfactory threshold (0 alleles: threshold at phenylethylethanol dilution step 12 of 16 (n = 1), 1 allele: 10.6±2.6 (n = 34), 2 alleles: 9.5±2.1 (n = 40)). The same SCN9A haplotype determined the pain threshold to blunt pressure stimuli (0 alleles: 21.1 N/m2, 1 allele: 29.8±10.4 N/m2, 2 alleles: 33.5±10.2 N/m2).
Conclusions: The findings established a working link between nociception and olfaction via Nav1.7 in the gain-of-function direction. Hence, together with the known reduced olfaction and pain in loss-of-function mutations, a bidirectional genetic functional association between nociception and olfaction exists at Nav1.7 level.
Suppression of HBV by Tenofovir in HBV/HIV coinfected patients : a systematic review and meta-analysis
Theodora de Vries-Sluijs
Mamta K. Jain
- Background: Hepatitis B coinfection is common in HIV-positive individuals and as antiretroviral therapy has made death due to AIDS less common, hepatitis has become increasingly important. Several drugs are available to treat hepatitis B. The most potent and the one with the lowest risk of resistance appears to be tenofovir (TDF). However there are several questions that remain unanswered regarding the use of TDF, including the proportion of patients that achieves suppression of HBV viral load and over what time, whether suppression is durable and whether prior treatment with other HBV-active drugs such as lamivudine, compromises the efficacy of TDF due to possible selection of resistant HBV strains.
Methods: A systematic review and meta-analysis following PRISMA guidelines and using multilevel mixed effects logistic regression, stratified by prior and/or concomitant use of lamivudine and/or emtricitabine.
Results: Data was available from 23 studies including 550 HBV/HIV coinfected patients treated with TDF. Follow up was for up to seven years but to ensure sufficient power the data analyses were limited to three years. The overall proportion achieving suppression of HBV replication was 57.4%, 79.0% and 85.6% at one, two and three years, respectively. No effect of prior or concomitant 3TC/FTC was shown. Virological rebound on TDF treatment was rare.
Interpretation: TDF suppresses HBV to undetectable levels in the majority of HBV/HIV coinfected patients with the proportion fully suppressed continuing to increase during continuous treatment. Prior treatment with 3TC/FTC does not compromise efficacy of TDF treatment. The use of combination treatment with 3TC/FTC offers no significant benefit over TDF alone.
FTY720 treatment in the convalescence period improves functional recovery and reduces reactive astrogliosis in photothrombotic stroke
- Background: The Sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P) signaling pathway is known to influence pathophysiological processes within the brain and the synthetic S1P analog FTY720 has been shown to provide neuroprotection in experimental models of acute stroke. However, the effects of a manipulation of S1P signaling at later time points after experimental stroke have not yet been investigated. We examined whether a relatively late initiation of a FTY720 treatment has a positive effect on long-term neurological outcome with a focus on reactive astrogliosis, synapses and neurotrophic factors.
Methods: We induced photothrombotic stroke (PT) in adult C57BL/6J mice and allowed them to recover for three days. Starting on post-stroke day 3, mice were treated with FTY720 (1 mg/kg b.i.d.) for 5 days. Behavioral outcome was observed until day 31 after photothrombosis and periinfarct cortical tissue was analyzed using tandem mass-spectrometry, TaqMan®analysis and immunofluorescence.
Results: FTY720 treatment results in a significantly better functional outcome persisting up to day 31 after PT. This is accompanied by a significant decrease in reactive astrogliosis and larger post-synaptic densities as well as changes in the expression of vascular endothelial growth factor α (VEGF α). Within the periinfarct cortex, S1P is significantly increased compared to healthy brain tissue.
Conclusion: Besides its known neuroprotective effects in the acute phase of experimental stroke, the initiation of FTY720 treatment in the convalescence period has a positive impact on long-term functional outcome, probably mediated through reduced astrogliosis, a modulation in synaptic morphology and an increased expression of neurotrophic factors.
Baseline MELD score predicts hepatic decompensation during antiviral therapy in patients with chronic hepatitis C and advanced cirrhosis
Michael von Wagner
Wolf Peter Hofmann
- Background and Aims: In patients with advanced liver cirrhosis due to chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection antiviral therapy with peginterferon and ribavirin is feasible in selected cases only due to potentially life-threatening side effects. However, predictive factors associated with hepatic decompensation during antiviral therapy are poorly defined.
Methods: In a retrospective cohort study, 68 patients with HCV-associated liver cirrhosis (mean MELD score 9.18±2.72) were treated with peginterferon and ribavirin. Clinical events indicating hepatic decompensation (onset of ascites, hepatic encephalopathy, upper gastrointestinal bleeding, hospitalization) as well as laboratory data were recorded at baseline and during a follow up period of 72 weeks after initiation of antiviral therapy. To monitor long term sequelae of end stage liver disease an extended follow up for HCC development, transplantation and death was applied (240weeks, ±SD 136weeks).
Results: Eighteen patients (26.5%) achieved a sustained virologic response. During the observational period a hepatic decompensation was observed in 36.8%. Patients with hepatic decompensation had higher MELD scores (10.84 vs. 8.23, p<0.001) and higher mean bilirubin levels (26.74 vs. 14.63 µmol/l, p<0.001), as well as lower serum albumin levels (38.2 vs. 41.1 g/l, p = 0.015), mean platelets (102.64 vs. 138.95/nl, p = 0.014) and mean leukocytes (4.02 vs. 5.68/nl, p = 0.002) at baseline as compared to those without decompensation. In the multivariate analysis the MELD score remained independently associated with hepatic decompensation (OR 1.56, 1.18–2.07; p = 0.002). When the patients were grouped according to their baseline MELD scores, hepatic decompensation occurred in 22%, 59%, and 83% of patients with MELD scores of 6–9, 10–13, and >14, respectively. Baseline MELD score was significantly associated with the risk for transplantation/death (p<0.001).
Conclusions: Our data suggest that the baseline MELD score predicts the risk of hepatic decompensation during antiviral therapy and thus contributes to decision making when antiviral therapy is discussed in HCV patients with advanced liver cirrhosis.