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Analysis of IL-17+ cells in facet joints of patients with spondyloarthritis suggests that the innate immune pathway might be of greater relevance than the Th17-mediated adaptive immune response
Heiner Appel, René Maier, Peihua Wu, Rebecca Scheer, Axel Hempfing, Ralph Kayser, Andreas Thiel, Andreas Radbruch, Christoph Loddenkemper, Joachim Sieper
Arthritis Research & Therapy , 2011, DOI: 10.1186/ar3370
Abstract: Immunohistochemical analysis of IL-17+ cells was performed in facet joints of 33 ankylosing spondylitis (AS) patients and compared with data from 20 osteoarthritis (OA) patients. The frequency of IL-17+CD4+ T cells in PB and SF of SpA patients (PB n = 30, SF n = 11), rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients (PB n = 14, SF n = 7), OA patients (PB n = 10) and healthy controls (PB n = 12) was analysed after stimulation with Staphylococcus aureus Enterotoxin B and phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate/ionomycin and quantified by flow cytometry.In AS facet joints, the frequency of IL-17-secreting cells was significantly higher than in samples obtained from OA patients (P < 0.001), with a slight predominance of IL-17+ cells among the mononuclear cells (61.5% ± 14.9%) compared to cells with polysegmental nuclei. Immunofluorescence microscopy revealed that the majority of IL-17+ cells were myeloperoxidase-positive (35.84 ± 13.06/high-power field (HPF) and CD15+ neutrophils (24.25 ± 10.36/HPF), while CD3+ T cells (0.51 ± 0.49/HPF) and AA-1+ mast cells (2.28 ± 1.96/HPF) were less often IL-17-positive. The frequency of IL-17+CD4+ T cells in the PB and SF of SpA patients did not differ significantly compared to RA patients, OA patients or healthy controls.Our data suggest an important role for IL-17 in the inflammatory processes in AS. However, the innate immune pathway might be of greater relevance than the Th17-mediated adaptive immune response.Spondyloarthritis (SpA) comprises ankylosing spondylitis (AS), reactive arthritis, arthritis/spondylitis with inflammatory bowel disease and arthritis/spondylitis with psoriasis. Inflammatory back pain, a similar pattern of peripheral joint involvement with an asymmetrical arthritis predominantly of the lower limbs and the possible occurrence of sacroiliitis, spondylitis, enthesitis and uveitis are typical clinical features in this group of diseases [1]. SpA can be split into two categories, SpA with predominant axial involvement and SpA with pred
Approach-related morbidity in transthoracic anterior spine surgery: a clinical study and review of literature
Zenner, Juliane;Koller, Heiko;Hempfing, Axel;Hutter, J?rg;Hitzl, Wolfgang;Resch, Herbert;Tauber, Mark;Meier, Oliver;Ferraris, Luis;
Coluna/Columna , 2010, DOI: 10.1590/S1808-18512010000100014
Abstract: background: anterior access to the thoracic spine is done by open thoracotomy (otc) or video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (vats). vats is known as the method which results in lower morbidity rates, but there is little evidence of its less invasiveness. objective: the current study yielded for outcome data concerning patients' perception of approach-related morbidity (arm) following otc for spinal surgery and that of a control group having a chest tube thoracotomy (ctt). methods: we performed a questionnaire assessment of arm after otc and ctt. applying strict inclusion criteria, we compared outcomes in terms of percentage morbidity (morbidity %) of 43 patients that underwent otc for instrumented scoliosis correction to 30 patients that had ctt for minor thoracic pathologies (e.g., pneumothorax). results: mean age in ctt and otc group was 50.2 and 16.5 years old, follow-up was of 32.2 and 58.4 months, and mean incision length was 2.5 and 25.5 cm, respectively. mean number of levels fused in the otc group was 5.8. mean morbidity (0% delineating no cases, 100% delineating highest morbidity) for the ctt group was 10.8±15.4% (0-59.5%), 42% of patients had no morbidity. signs of intercostal neuralgia (icn) were present in 16.7%. a total of 35.5% had a morbidity >10% (mean: 27.5%), and 10% of morbidity cases were defined as having a chronic post-thoracotomy pain (cpp). in the otc group, mean morbidity was 7.0±12.7% (0-52.1%), 44% had no morbidity. out of the sample, 18.6% had morbidity >10% (mean: 28.6%). signs of icn were present in 14%. in both groups, the presence of icn had a significant impact on and showed correlation with morbidity (p<0.0001). in terms of clinical judgement, the severity of the arm after a ctt or otc was generally mild except for one patient in each group. age and follow-up were significantly different between groups (p<0.0001, p=0.02), but the intergroup difference in morbidity was not significant (p=0.08). conclusions: arm after open thoracic sp
Correlation of histopathological findings and magnetic resonance imaging in the spine of patients with ankylosing spondylitis
Heiner Appel, Christoph Loddenkemper, Zarko Grozdanovic, Harald Ebhardt, Marc Dreimann, Axel Hempfing, Harald Stein, Peter Metz-Stavenhagen, Martin Rudwaleit, Joachim Sieper
Arthritis Research & Therapy , 2006, DOI: 10.1186/ar2035
Abstract: The prevalence of ankylosing spondylitis (AS) within Caucasians has been estimated to be between 0.2% and 0.8% [1,2]. About 20% of these patients with AS have bridging syndesmophytes which result in restricted movement of the spine as a consequence of active inflammation in spinal joints and adjacent structures [3]. It has been suggested that the involvement of zygapophyseal joints is important in the restriction of spinal mobility [3-5]. This is supported by computed tomography observations, which displayed a significant correlation between changes in the zygapophyseal joints and restriction of spinal mobility [6,7].Acute inflammation in the spine associated with AS, as detected by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), has been described in the intervertebral disc, in the vertebra, enthesis of interspinal ligaments, costovertebral joints and zygapophyseal joints [8]. However, systematic MRI of zygapophyseal joints has not been undertaken so far.As a consequence, a correlation of histopathological analysis of the spine and inflammation as visualized by MRI has also not previously been done. In the sacroiliac joints of patients with AS, a correlation of MRI findings and histopathological evaluations from needle biopsies out of the same sacroiliac joints was reported, but without description and quantification of histological edema [9].We have recently reported the first systematic histological study of zygapophyseal joints in patients with AS [10]. In the present study, we first examined whether inflammation in the spine of patients with AS, as detected by histopathology, can be correlated with bone marrow edema detected by MRI and consequently whether a negative MRI excludes active inflammation of the spine in patients with AS.Zygapophyseal joints were obtained from eight patients with AS (mean age 45 (range 30 to 59); five men, three women). This study includes patients from a larger group for which histopathological observations from the zygapophyseal joints were repo
Green’s Function Approach to the Bose-Hubbard Model  [PDF]
Matthias Ohliger, Axel Pelster
World Journal of Condensed Matter Physics (WJCMP) , 2013, DOI: 10.4236/wjcmp.2013.32020

We use a diagrammatic hopping expansion to calculate finite-temperature Green functions of the Bose-Hubbard model which describes bosons in an optical lattice. This technique allows for a summation of subsets of diagrams, so the divergence of the Green function leads to non-perturbative results for the boundary between the superfluid and the Mott phase for finite temperatures. Whereas the first-order calculation reproduces the seminal mean-field result, the second order goes beyond and shifts the phase boundary in the immediate vicinity of the critical parameters determined by high-precision Monte-Carlo simulations of the Bose-Hubbard model. In addition, our Greens function approach allows for calculating the excitation spectrum both for zero and finite temperature and for determining the effective masses of particles and holes.

In-Situ Hydroelectrothermal Deposition of Silicate Layers on Stainless Steel Surfaces  [PDF]
Jaybalan Tamahrajah, Axel Brehm
Advances in Materials Physics and Chemistry (AMPC) , 2015, DOI: 10.4236/ampc.2015.59038
Abstract: The deposition of zeolites on solid support materials is possible by means of electrochemical methods, impregnation processes, as well as in-situ syntheses. Electrochemical deposition of zeolites has been reported as well, however with readily synthesized zeolite structures. Adhesive deposition of zeolites on stainless steel (S316) has been reported. This report investigates the feasibility of the deposition of silicates by in-situ hydroelectrothermal means. The investigation was done in aqueous solutions of pH = 7 to 13 at different temperatures (25°C to 70°C) by linear sweep method. Deposition was done at a saturated H2 atmosphere to ensure prior deposition of thin iron oxide film on the surface and formation of Fe-O-Si-linkages. This was proven by Raman measurement of the samples. Further linear sweep experiments in the presence of silica show monodentate and bidentate Fe-O-Si linkages on the surface, proven by IR-measurements. Presence of dissolved silica was done by UV-Vis with the molybdate yellow method. The best results are achieved at 70°C at pH 13 and ﹣4 mV (vs Ag/AgCl) or 200 mV (vs SHE). Discontinuous homogeneous layers are found on the stainless steel surface observed by SEM, EDX measurements and electrochemical measurements. Layer discontinuties are caused due to low silica concentration at equilibrium hydrothermal conditions, especially in the absence of silicic acid. All results shown are for the best results achieved except for linear sweep measurements and solubility constants of dissolved silica.
Nuclear Power and Radioactive Contamination  [PDF]
Nils-Axel M?rner
Journal of Environmental Protection (JEP) , 2014, DOI: 10.4236/jep.2014.53021

Nuclear power was designed to produce electric power. Each part of the chain from uranium mining to handling of the waste is linked to serious contamination risks, however. Uranium mining is generally linked to local to regional contamination. The fuel production also produces depleted uranium at a ratio of 1:7. The reactors are operating under danger of accidents. Numerous minor accidents and endless temporary shut-downs are occasionally mixed with disastrous accidents. The Chernobyl (1986) and Fukushima (2011) accidents are notorious. The radioactive contamination from those accidents is still incomprehensible and will keep serious destructions of the environment for centuries to come. The handling of the high-level nuclear waste remains unsolved. Methods proposed in Sweden, Finland and France seem likely to lead to disastrous radioactive contaminations in the future. The only way out of this dilemma seems to be a disposal where the waste, though effectively sealed-off in the bedrock, remains accessible and controllable. At present, the “cost & benefit” balance seems strongly tilted over to the “far too costly side”, however.

An M > 6 Earthquake ~750 BC in SE Sweden  [PDF]
Nils-Axel M?rner
Open Journal of Earthquake Research (OJER) , 2014, DOI: 10.4236/ojer.2014.32008

At about 780-750 BC, a major earthquake struck southeast Sweden. At Brantetrask, the bedrock of quartzite was heavily fractured into big, flat blocks. Local people turned the site into a quarry for flat blocks to be placed around the Late Bronze Age graves at Brantevik, the big flat blocks of the sarcophagus, and two 5 tons monoliths transported 30 km to the SSW and erected as the bow and stern stones in the huge ship monument of Ales Stones. Rock carvings from the Bronze Age at Jarrestad became traversed by numerous fractures. Similar rock carving fracturing was observed at six other sites within a radius of 5 km from Brantetrask. In the shore cliff at Ales Stones a seismite was recorded and dated at 780-750 BC. At Glimme hallar, 4 km WSW of Brantevik, the bedrock shows signs of young tectonization. At Lillehem, 40 km to the NNW of Brantetrask, seismically disturbed beds were recorded and dated at the Late Holocene. The seismic event is concluded to have occurred around 780-750 cal.yrs BC and to have had a magnitude in the order of 6.3 to 6.8 and an intensity of about IX on the IES scale.

The Flooding of Ur in Mesopotamia in New Perspectives  [PDF]
Nils-Axel M?rner
Archaeological Discovery (AD) , 2015, DOI: 10.4236/ad.2015.31003
Abstract: At around 5000 years BP sea level peaked in the Persian Gulf region at a level of +0.3 m as now determined in Qatar. This coincides with the famous flooding of the ancient city of Ur, originally interpreted as due to local changes in the fluvial system. We can now propose that, in fact, it was the sea level rise that triggered the fluvial reorganization and rise in ground water level that ultimately led to “the flooding of Ur”.
Glacial Isostasy: Regional—Not Global  [PDF]
Nils-Axel M?rner
International Journal of Geosciences (IJG) , 2015, DOI: 10.4236/ijg.2015.66045
Abstract: The load of the continental ice caps of the Ice Ages deformed the bedrock, and when the ice melted in postglacial time, land rose. This process is known as glacial isostasy. The deformations are compensated either regionally or globally. Fennoscandian data indicate a regional compensation. Global sea level data support a regional, not global, compensation. Subtracting GIA corrections from satellite altimetry records brings—for the first time—different sea level indications into harmony of a present mean global sea level rise of 0.0 to 1.0 mm/yr.
Origin of the Amazonian Rainforest  [PDF]
Nils-Axel M?rner
International Journal of Geosciences (IJG) , 2016, DOI: 10.4236/ijg.2016.74036
Abstract: In the last 30 ma, the passive continental margin of South America and the Amazonian basin experienced three periods of major sea level inundation; viz. at around 20 ma, at around 10 ma and at around 3 ma. The establishment of the immense Amazonian rainforest ecosystem covering some 6 million square km can neither have occurred during the periods of high sea level nor at the intermediate periods of arid or semi-arid climatic conditions. Therefore, the origin of the Amazonian rainforest of present-day dimensions must be set at the Late Miocene. The establishment of the Amazonian rainforest implied the withdrawal of enormous quantities of water from the global hydrological cycle. The drastic increase in evaporation leading to the Messinian salinity crisis in the Mediterranean occurred at the same time as the Amazonian rainforest (sensu hodierno) establishment suggesting a causal linkage.
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