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Search Results: 1 - 10 of 1425 matches for " Cinzia Colombo "
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Respiratory Allergies: A General Overview of Remedies, Delivery Systems, and the Need to Progress
Giuliano Molinari,Giselda Colombo,Cinzia Celenza
ISRN Allergy , 2014, DOI: 10.1155/2014/326980
Abstract: The spread of respiratory allergies is increasing in parallel with the alarm of the scientific community. Evidently, our knowledge of the onset mechanisms of these diseases and, as a consequence, of the available remedies is inadequate. This review provides a brief, general description of current therapeutic resources and the state of research with regard to both drugs and medical devices in order to highlight their limits and the urgent need for progress. Increasing the amount of basic biochemical research will improve our knowledge of such onset mechanisms and the potential efficacy of therapeutic preparations. 1. Introduction It is known that allergic rhinitis (AR) is mainly induced by an IgE-mediated response and shares many features with allergic asthma (AA). AR is often associated with sinusitis or other comorbidities such as conjunctivitis [1–4] and precedes AA. AR and AA not only have a common biochemical onset but, to some extent, also have common remedies. The interdependence between morbidities of the upper and lower airways is now known under the concept of “united airways” and the need for the concomitant treatment of these diseases is recognized. The IgE-mediated response is not a unique mechanism of allergic reaction onset; other less known mechanisms exist. In fact, five years ago, the ARIA group of experts wrote [5] “allergen-specific IgE, synthesized in response to allergens in the environment, becomes fixed to FcεRI on the membranes of mast cells and basophils; this aggregation results in the production of mediators (histamine, leukotrienes and others) that produce the allergic response; however a direct non-IgE-dependent mechanism also exists and the relative importance of non-IgE to IgE-mediated mechanisms is undetermined.” At present, we know somewhat more [6–21] and research is proceeding in many directions. Long-term birth cohort studies are underway [22] to assess both the genetic and environmental determinants of allergic responses. Several guidelines are available for the prevention, diagnosis, and therapy of these diseases [23–26], but despite the considerable effort made in studying new remedies, which are proposed in many different pharmaceutical forms as described in the central part of this review, the number of allergic patients is growing, especially with respect to children and young adults. As a consequence, the need to make progress is increasingly evident. In the last two years, several proposals/requests have been presented with respect to research, the development, regulation, and utilization of therapeutic
Patient Organizations’ Funding from Pharmaceutical Companies: Is Disclosure Clear, Complete and Accessible to the Public? An Italian Survey
Cinzia Colombo, Paola Mosconi, Walter Villani, Silvio Garattini
PLOS ONE , 2012, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0034974
Abstract: Background Many patients’ and consumers’ organizations accept drug industry funding to support their activities. As drug companies and patient groups move closer, disclosure become essential for transparency, and the internet could be a useful means of making sponsorship information accessible to the public. This survey aims to assess the transparency of a large group of Italian patient and consumer groups and a group of pharmaceutical companies, focusing on their websites. Methodology/Principal Findings Patient and consumer groups were selected from those stated to be sponsored by a group of pharmaceutical companies on their websites. The websites were examined using two forms with principal (name of drug companies providing funds, amount of funding) and secondary indicators of transparency (section where sponsors are disclosed, update of sponsorship). Principal indicators were applied independently by two reviewers to the patient and consumer groups’ websites. Discordances were solved by discussion. One hundred fifty-seven Italian patient and consumer groups and 17 drug companies were considered. Thirteen drug companies (76%) named at least one group funded, on their Italian websites. Of these, four (31%) indicated the activities sponsored and two (15%) the amount of funding. Of the 157 patient and consumer groups, 46 (29%) named at least one pharmaceutical company as providing funds. Three (6%) reported the amount of funding, 25 (54%) the activities funded, none the proportion of income derived from drug companies. Among the groups naming pharmaceutical company sponsors, 15 (33%) declared them in a dedicated section, five (11%) on the home page, the others in the financial report or other sections. Conclusions/Significance Disclosure of funds is scarce on Italian patient and consumer groups’ websites. The levels of transparency need to be improved. Disclosure of patient and consumer groups provided with funds is frequent on Italian pharmaceutical companies’ websites, but information are often not complete.
Does a consumer training work? a follow-up survey of the PartecipaSalute training programs
Mosconi Paola,Satolli Roberto,Colombo Cinzia,Villani Walter
Health Research Policy and Systems , 2012, DOI: 10.1186/1478-4505-10-27
Abstract: Background When properly trained through training programs on epidemiology, clinical research and healthcare policy, members of patients’/consumers’ organizations could be helpful for a patient-oriented healthcare system. Since 2006 the not for profit project PartecipaSalute has organized periodic editions of a training program for representatives of citizens’/patients’ organizations. After five editions of this training program, a survey of the long-term satisfaction and the impact on activities has been carried out. Methods A 17-questions follow-up questionnaire has been developed. The sample comprised 99 people who had taken part in at least one program edition. Results The overall response rate was 89% (89 responders/99 participants). About 98% of participants expressed general satisfaction with the training program and with the knowledge gained. Medical and informative topics were rated better than technical ones for their usefulness (96% versus 86%). The results of the survey showed a strong impact of the training course on single participants, while a weak outcome on the activities of the organizations was reported. Conclusions The training program was positively rated, and improvements in personal knowledge were reported. Less impact was reported on organizations’ activities. Participants showed a remarkable willingness to get more involved in healthcare decisions, and to boost their knowledge of health and research issues. The results show the importance of follow-up to understand the real value of training program and to better organize future programs.
Assessing Steady-state Fluorescence and PRI from Hyperspectral Proximal Sensing as Early Indicators of Plant Stress: The Case of Ozone Exposure
Michele Meroni,Micol Rossini,Valentina Picchi,Cinzia Panigada,Sergio Cogliati,Cristina Nali,Roberto Colombo
Sensors , 2008, DOI: 10.3390/s8031740
Abstract: High spectral resolution spectrometers were used to detect optical signals ofongoing plant stress in potted white clover canopies subjected to ozone fumigation. Thecase of ozone stress is used in this manuscript as a paradigm of oxidative stress. Steadystatefluorescence (Fs) and the Photochemical Reflectance Index (PRI) were investigatedas advanced hyperspectral remote sensing techniques able to sense variations in the excessenergy dissipation pathways occurring when photosynthesis declines in plants exposed to astress agent. Fs and PRI were monitored in control and ozone fumigated canopies during a21-day experiment together with the traditional Normalized Difference Vegetation Index(NDVI) and physiological measurements commonly employed by physiologists to describestress development (i.e. net CO2 assimilation, active fluorimetry, chlorophyll concentrationand visible injuries). It is shown that remote detection of an ongoing stress through Fs andPRI can be achieved in an early phase, characterized by the decline of photosynthesis. Onthe contrary, NDVI was able to detect the stress only when damage occurred. These resultsopen up new possibilities for assessment of plant stress by means of hyperspectral remotesensing.
Informing women about hormone replacement therapy: the consensus conference statement
Paola Mosconi, Serena Donati, Cinzia Colombo, Alfonso Mele, Alessandro Liberati, Roberto Satolli, Consensus Conference Working Group
BMC Women's Health , 2009, DOI: 10.1186/1472-6874-9-14
Abstract: We therefore felt that an explicit, rigorous and structured assessment of the information needs on this issue was urgent and we opted for the organisation of a national consensus conference (CC) to assess the current status of the quality of information on hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and re-visit recent research findings on its risks/benefits.We chose a structured approach based on the traditional CC method combined with a structured preparatory work supervised by an organising committee (OC) and a scientific board (SB). The OC and SB chose the members of the CC's jury and appointed three multidisciplinary working groups (MWG) which were asked to review clinical issues and different aspects of the quality of information. Before the CC, the three MWGs carried out: a literature review on the risk/benefit profile of HRT and two surveys on the quality of information on lay press and booklets targeted to women. A population survey on women's knowledge, attitude and practice was also carried out. The jury received the documents in advance, listened the presentations during the two-day meeting of the CCs, met immediately after in a closed-door meeting and prepared the final document. Participants were researchers, clinicians, journalists as well as consumers' representatives.Key messages in the CC's deliberation were: a) women need to be fully informed about the transient nature of menopausal symptoms, about HRT risks and benefits and about the availability of non-pharmacological interventions; b) HRT is not recommended to prevent menopausal symptoms; c) the term "HRT" is misleading and "post menopausal hormone therapy" should be the preferred definition.This CC led to the identification of specific information drawbacks. Women are exposed to messages that are often partial, non evidence-based nor transparently developed. The structured and participative methodology of this CC allowed a multidisciplinary perspective and a substantial lay people input.In Italy, as in
Informing Women on Menopause and Hormone Therapy: Know the Menopause a Multidisciplinary Project Involving Local Healthcare System
Serena Donati, Roberto Satolli, Cinzia Colombo, Sabrina Senatore, Rodolfo Cotichini, Roberto Da Cas, Stefania Spila Alegiani, Paola Mosconi
PLOS ONE , 2013, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0085121
Abstract: Background Hormone therapy (HT) in the menopause is still a tricky question among healthcare providers, women and mass media. Informing women about hormone replacement therapy was a Consensus Conference (CC) organized in 2008: the project Know the Menopause has been launched to shift out the results to women and healthcare providers and to assess the impact of the cc’s statement. Methods And Findings: The project, aimed at women aged 45-60 years, was developed in four Italian Regions: Lombardy, Tuscany, Lazio, Sicily, each with one Local Health Unit (LHU) as “intervention” and one as “control”. Activities performed were: survey on the press; training courses for health professionals; educational materials for target populations; survey aimed at women, general practitioners (GPs), and gynaecologists; data analysis on HT drugs’ prescription. Local activities were: training courses; public meetings; dissemination on mass media. About 3,700 health professionals were contacted and 1,800 participated in the project. About 146,500 printed leaflets on menopause were distributed to facilitate the dialogue among women and health care professionals. Training courses and educational cascade-process activities: participation ranged 25- 72% of GPs, 17-71% of gynaecologists, 14-78% of pharmacists, 34-85% of midwives. Survey: 1,281 women interviewed. More than 90% believed menopause was a normal phase in life. More than half did not receive information about menopause and therapies. HT prescription analysis: prevalence fell from 6% to 4% in five years. No differences in time trends before-after the intervention. Major limitations are: organizational difficulties met by LHU, too short time for some local activities. Conclusions A huge amount of information was spread through health professionals and women. The issue of menopause was also used to discuss women’s wellbeing. This project offered an opportunity to launch a multidisciplinary, multimodal approach to menopause looking not only at pharmacological aspects, but also at quality of life and information.
Policy Research in a Complex Context  [PDF]
Alessandro Colombo
Intelligent Information Management (IIM) , 2010, DOI: 10.4236/iim.2010.211071
Abstract: Today’s world is characterized by uncertainty and complexity. While examining the importance of research in such a context, the paper attempts to outline a first definition of the role and potential of policy research. The policy process itself has become increasingly complex and non linear, as has its relationship with research. Consequently, policy researchers’ contributions to policymakers may not have a direct, punctual and immediate influence on single issues, but rather a more pervasive, interactive, deliberative effect. Focusing on the theoretical definition of the risk, uncertainty and complexity of the policy process today, the paper outlines some questions and puts forward possible answers which offer a starting point for further analysis. It explores a new role for policy research and underlines the opportunities offered by argumentative, deliberative and multidisciplinary approaches which can positively impact democracy.
Presenting evidence-based health information for people with multiple sclerosis: the IN-DEEP project protocol
Sophie Hill, Graziella Filippini, Anneliese Synnot, Michael Summers, Deirdre Beecher, Cinzia Colombo, Paola Mosconi, Mario A Battaglia, Sue Shapland, Richard H Osborne, Melanie Hawkins
BMC Medical Informatics and Decision Making , 2012, DOI: 10.1186/1472-6947-12-20
Abstract: This project is an Australian-Italian collaboration between researchers, MS societies and people with MS. Using a four-stage mixed methods design, a model will be developed for presenting evidence-based health information on the Internet for people with MS and their families. This evidence-based health information will draw upon systematic reviews of MS interventions from The Cochrane Library. Each stage of the project will build on the last. After conducting focus groups with people with MS and their family members (Stage 1), we will develop a model for summarising and presenting Cochrane MS reviews that is integrated with supporting information to aid understanding and decision making. This will be reviewed and finalised with people with MS, family members, health professionals and MS Society staff (Stage 2), before being uploaded to the Internet and evaluated (Stages 3 and 4).This project aims to produce accessible and meaningful evidence-based health information about MS for use in the varied decision making and management situations people encounter in everyday life. It is expected that the findings will be relevant to broader efforts to provide evidence-based health information for patients and the general public. The international collaboration also permits exploration of cultural differences that could inform international practice.Systematic reviews represent the highest level of evidence of the effectiveness of health care interventions [1]. Historically, it has been clinicians who have used evidence from systematic reviews of controlled trials to stay abreast of current research and inform their practice [2]. Increasingly, however, evidence-based health information, including systematic reviews, is also being provided to lay audiences [3].A recognised source of high quality evidence is the Cochrane Collaboration [4]. Cochrane systematic reviews summarise evidence from trials on the effects of treatments (medicines, surgery, rehabilitation), and behavioura
Anti-plasmodial and insecticidal activities of the essential oils of aromatic plants growing in the Mediterranean area
Mario Dell'Agli, Cinzia Sanna, Patrizia Rubiolo, Nicoletta Basilico, Elisa Colombo, Maria M Scaltrito, Ousmane Ndiath, Luca Maccarone, Donatella Taramelli, Carlo Bicchi, Mauro Ballero, Enrica Bosisio
Malaria Journal , 2012, DOI: 10.1186/1475-2875-11-219
Abstract: The essential oils were obtained by steam distillation, fractionated by silica gel column chromatography and analysed by GC-FID-MS. Total oil and three main fractions were tested on D10 and W2 strains of Plasmodium falciparum in vitro. Larvicidal and adulticidal activities were tested on Anopheles gambiae susceptible strains.The essential oil of savory, rich in thymol, was the most effective against P. falciparum with an inhibitory activity independent from the time of collection (IC50 17–26?μg/ml on D10 and 9–11?μg/ml on W2). Upon fractionation, fraction 1 was enriched in mono-sesquiterpenoid hydrocarbons; fraction 2 in thymol (73-83%); and fraction 3 contained thymol, carvacrol and terpinen-4-ol, with a different composition depending on the time of collection. Thymol-enriched fractions were the most active on both strains (IC50 20–22?μg/ml on D10 and 8–10?μg/ml on W2) and thymol was confirmed as mainly responsible for this activity (IC50 19.7± 3.0 and 10.6 ± 2.0?μg/ml on D10 and W2, respectively). The essential oil of S. thymbra L. showed also larvicidal and adulticidal activities. The larvicidal activity, expressed as LC50, was 0.15?±?0.002; 0.21?±?0.13; and 0.15?±?0.09?μg/ml (mean ± sd) depending on the time of collection: before, during and after flowering, respectively.This study provides evidence for the use of essential oils for treating malaria and fighting the vector at both the larval and adult stages. These findings open the possibility for further investigation aimed at the isolation of natural products with anti-parasitic properties.
Enhancement and knowledge
Cinzia Talamo
Techne : Journal of Technology for Architecture and Environment , 2012,
Abstract: Many issues related to enhancement strategies emerge nowadays both from the scenario offered by public real estates and from the current processes of conveyance of public assets to local authorities. On one hand it is still difficult, from a strategic point of view, to approach in the medium-long term the chronic problems of the public estates due to deterioration, obsolescence and organizational inadequacy. On the other hand there is the risk that inadequate levels of knowledge lead on one side to a prevalence of the binomial enhancement-alienation and on the other side to a lack of full comprehension of the actual potentialities of the existing assets. In this direction it is possible to analyze the topic of enhancement through, among many, the key of knowledge during the lifecycle of a building.
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