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ASPECTS REGARDING THE COUTRY RISK AND ITS RATING
Cristina Ciumas,Viorela-Ligia Vaidean,Stefan Manta,Florina Aurica Moldovan
Annals of the University of Oradea : Economic Science , 2009,
Abstract: Is Romania affected by the country risk? Country risk, especially the score given by the rating companies is meant to lead to economic growth or recession. Is it possible for only one grade to have that much impact upon the economy? The truth is that such
Nociceptive tolerance is improved by bradykinin receptor B1 antagonism and joint morphology is protected by both endothelin type A and bradykinin receptor B1 antagonism in a surgical model of osteoarthritis
Gabriel N Kaufman, Charlotte Zaouter, Barthélémy Valteau, Pierre Sirois, Florina Moldovan
Arthritis Research & Therapy , 2011, DOI: 10.1186/ar3338
Abstract: Osteoarthritis was surgically induced in male rats by transection of the right anterior cruciate ligament. Animals were subsequently treated with weekly intra-articular injections of specific peptide antagonists of ETA and/or BKB1. Hind limb nociception was measured by static weight bearing biweekly for two months post-operatively. Post-mortem, right knee joints were analyzed radiologically by X-ray and magnetic resonance, and histologically by the OARSI histopathology assessment system.Single local BKB1 antagonist treatment diminished overall hind limb nociception, and accelerated post-operative recovery after disease induction. Both ETA and/or BKB1 antagonist treatments protected joint radiomorphology and histomorphology. Dual ETA/BKB1 antagonism was slightly more protective, as measured by radiology and histology.BKB1 antagonism improves nociceptive tolerance, and both ETA and/or BKB1 antagonism prevents joint cartilage degradation in a surgical model of osteoarthritis. Therefore, they represent a novel therapeutic strategy: specific receptor antagonism may prove beneficial in disease management.Osteoarthritis (OA) is characterized by a progressive destruction of articular cartilage accompanied by subchondral bone remodeling, osteophyte formation, and synovial membrane inflammation [1]. Clinically, this disease progresses slowly and principally affects the hands and large weight-bearing joints. Pain is the primary complaint of patients with OA. Its etiology is multifactorial: subchondral bone can have micro-fractures, osteophytes can cause stretching of peri-osteal nerve endings, ligaments may be stretched, the joint capsule can be inflamed or distended, the synovium may be inflamed, and muscles may spasm [2]. Furthermore, neo-innervation of joint tissue concurrent with angiogenesis [3,4] may contribute to deep joint pain. Further understanding of the molecular mechanisms behind these effects should provide avenues towards targeted disease-modifying or -slowing t
Role of Chd7 in Zebrafish: A Model for CHARGE Syndrome
Shunmoogum A. Patten, Nicole L. Jacobs-McDaniels, Charlotte Zaouter, Pierre Drapeau, R. Craig Albertson, Florina Moldovan
PLOS ONE , 2012, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0031650
Abstract: CHARGE syndrome is caused by mutations in the CHD7 gene. Several organ systems including the retina, cranial nerves, inner ear and heart are affected in CHARGE syndrome. However, the mechanistic link between mutations in CHD7 and many of the organ systems dysfunction remains elusive. Here, we show that Chd7 is required for the organization of the neural retina in zebrafish. We observe an abnormal expression or a complete absence of molecular markers for the retinal ganglion cells and photoreceptors, indicating that Chd7 regulates the differentiation of retinal cells and plays an essential role in retinal cell development. In addition, zebrafish with reduced Chd7 display an abnormal organization and clustering of cranial motor neurons. We also note a pronounced reduction in the facial branchiomotor neurons and the vagal motor neurons display aberrant positioning. Further, these fish exhibit a severe loss of the facial nerves. Knock-down of Chd7 results in a curvature of the long body axis and these fish develop irregular shaped vertebrae and have a reduction in bone mineralization. Chd7 knockdown also results in a loss of proper segment polarity illustrated by flawed efnb2a and ttna expression, which is associated with later vascular segmentation defects. These critical roles for Chd7 in retinal and vertebral development were previously unrecognized and our results provide new insights into the role of Chd7 during development and in CHARGE syndrome pathogenesis.
Nanocomposites Based on Conducting Polymers and Functionalized Carbon Nanotubes with Different Dopants Obtained by Electropolymerization  [PDF]
Florina Branzoi, Viorel Branzoi
Journal of Surface Engineered Materials and Advanced Technology (JSEMAT) , 2014, DOI: 10.4236/jsemat.2014.43020
Abstract:

Nanocomposite films based on poly (3,4-ethylenedioxy thiophene) (PEDOT), functionalized single-walled carbon nanotubes and different dopants were studied. It was fabricated by a simple oxidative electropolymerization method. The dopant substances used were SDS (Sodium dodecyl sulfate) and tiron (1,2-Dihydroxybenzene-3,5-disulfonic acid disodium salt hydrate). These nano-composite films were grown electrochemically from aqueous solutions such that constituents were deposited simultaneously onto substrate electrode. The synthetic, morphological and electrical properties of the nanocomposite films obtained were compared. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) revealed that the composite films consisted of nanoporous networks of SWCNTS (single-walled carbon nanotubes) coated with polymeric film. Cyclic voltammetry (CV), electro-chemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) and FT-IR spectroscopy demonstrated that these composite films had similar electrochemical response rates to pure polymeric films but a lower resistance and much improved mechanical integrity. The negatively charged functionalized carbon nano-tubes (CNTSF) served as anionic dopant during the electropolymerization to synthesize polymer/CNTSF composite films. The specific electrochemical capacitance of the composite films is a significantly higher value than that for pure polymer films prepared similarly. Using these composite films, the modified electrodes with improved properties were obtained. (In this paper, for simplicity, the SWANTs-COOH group will be noted CNTsF which means functionalized carbon nanotubes.)

The Electrochemical Behaviour of PEDOT Film Electrosynthesized in Presence of Some Dopants  [PDF]
Florina Branzoi, Viorel Branzoi
Open Journal of Organic Polymer Materials (OJOPM) , 2015, DOI: 10.4236/ojopm.2015.54010
Abstract: Electropolymerization and characterization of poly(3,4-ethylene dioxythiophene) (PEDOT) doped with functionalized single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWANTs) polyaminobenzene sulfonic acid (PABS) and different dopants were studied. It was fabricated by a simple oxidative electropolymerization method. The nanocomposite coatings have been prepared by using electrochemical methods from aqueous solutions, such that the components were deposited onto platinum electrode substrate. The morphology of composite films was analyzed by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The electrochemical and physical properties of the resulting composites were evaluated by cyclic voltammetry (CV), electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR) techniques in 0.1 M LiClO4 aqueous solutions. The value of specific electrochemical capacitance of the composite films is considerably higher than that of the pure polymers films. The improved properties of the electrodes were obtained by using these composite films. The dopant substances used were sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS) and 1,2-Dihydroxy- benzene-3,5-disulfonic acid disodium salt hydrate (tiron).
Endothelin-1 in osteoarthritic chondrocytes triggers nitric oxide production and upregulates collagenase production
Christina Manacu, Johanne Martel-Pelletier, Marjolaine Roy-Beaudry, Jean-Pierre Pelletier, Julio C Fernandes, Fazool S Shipkolye, Dragoslav R Mitrovic, Florina Moldovan
Arthritis Research & Therapy , 2005, DOI: 10.1186/ar1489
Abstract: Cartilage degradation in osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis constitutes a major structural change in the joint, which may severely impair its function and cause pain and disability. This degradation is accompanied by the release in the synovial fluid of degraded matrix constituents that primarily result from an increased matrix catabolism [1]. Various factors are directly involved in this process. Endothelin-1 (ET-1), a potent vasoconstrictor and promitogen peptide for many cell types, including chondrocytes, was recently identified as one such factor [2,3].ET-1 binds to the specific endothelin A or endothelin B receptors expressed on chondrocytes [4] and triggers a cascade of intracellular events, including phospholipase C activation [5], an increase in intracellular calcium [6,7], prostaglandin production [8] and nitric oxide (NO) release [9]. The effect of ET-1 on DNA and protein synthesis in chondrocytes is biphasic. The potent initial stimulatory effect of ET-1 decreases progressively with time and is followed by an inhibition [3,8]. The inhibitory effect seems to be mediated by NO and cGMP, both produced in response to ET-1 stimulation [8,9]. Additionally, we have recently demonstrated that ET-1 is significantly increased locally in OA cartilage and synovial membrane when compared with normal tissues. In OA cartilage, ET-1 is involved in cartilage catabolism through metalloprotease (MMP) regulation and the induction of type II collagen breakdown [2].MMPs are a family of structurally related zinc-dependent neutral endopeptidases classified into subgroups of collagenases, gelatinases, stromelysins, membrane-type MMPs and other MMPs [10]. When activated, MMPs degrade a broad spectrum of substrates, including collagens and other matrix macromolecules. As a whole, MMPs play an important role in the extracellular matrix remodelling that occurs under physiological and pathological conditions. Among all the MMPs, we have recently demonstrated an induction in
Anabolic and catabolic responses of human articular chondrocytes to varying oxygen percentages
Simon Str?bel, Marko Loparic, David Wendt, Andreas D Schenk, Christian Candrian, Raija LP Lindberg, Florina Moldovan, Andrea Barbero, Ivan Martin
Arthritis Research & Therapy , 2010, DOI: 10.1186/ar2942
Abstract: HAC expanded in monolayer were cultured in pellets for two weeks (Phase I) or up to an additional two weeks (Phase II). In each Phase, cells were exposed to 19% or 5% oxygen. Resulting tissues and culture media were assessed to determine amounts of produced/released proteoglycans and collagens, metalloproteinases (MMPs), collagen degradation products and collagen fibril organization using biochemical, (immuno)-histochemical, gene expression and scanning electron microscopy analyses. In specific experiments, the hypoxia-inducible factor-1α (HIF-1α) inhibitor cadmium chloride was supplemented in the culture medium to assess the involvement of this pathway.Independent from the oxygen percentage during expansion, HAC cultured at 5% O2 (vs 19% O2) during Phase I accumulated higher amounts of glycosaminoglycans and type II collagen and expressed reduced levels of MMP-1 and MMP-13 mRNA and protein. Switching to 19% oxygen during Phase II resulted in reduced synthesis of proteoglycan and collagen, increased release of MMPs, accumulation of type II collagen fragments and higher branching of collagen fibrils. In contrast, reducing O2 during Phase II resulted in increased proteoglycan and type II collagen synthesis and reduced expression and release of MMP-13 mRNA and protein. Supplementation of cadmium chloride during differentiation culture at 5% O2 drastically reduced the up-regulation of type II collagen and the down-regulation of MMP-1 mRNA.The application of more physiologic oxygen percentage during specific phases of differentiation culture enhanced the biosynthetic activity and reduced the activity of catabolic enzymes implicated in cartilage breakdown. Modulation of the oxygen percentage during HAC culture may be used to study pathophysiological events occurring in osteoarthritis and to enhance properties of in vitro engineered cartilaginous tissues.Homeostasis of normal cartilage in adults represents a delicate balance between the synthesis and the degradation of ext
Bovine and Human Serum Albumin Interactions with 3-Carboxyphenoxathiin Studied by Fluorescence and Circular Dichroism Spectroscopy
Aurica Varlan,Mihaela Hillebrand
Molecules , 2010, DOI: 10.3390/molecules15063905
Abstract: The interactions of 3-carboxyphenoxathiin with Bovine Serum Albumin (BSA) and Human Serum Albumin (HSA) have been studied by fluorescence and circular dichroism spectroscopy. The binding of 3-carboxyphenoxathiin quenches the BSA and HSA fluorescence, revealing a 1:1 interaction with a binding constant of about 105 M-1. In addition, according to the synchronous fluorescence spectra of BSA and HSA in presence of 3-carboxyphenoxathiin, the tryptophan residues of the proteins are most perturbed by the binding process. Finally, the distance between the acceptor, 3-carboxyphenoxathiin, and the donor, BSA or HSA, was estimated on the basis of the F?rster resonance energy transfer (FRET). The fluorescence results are correlated with those obtained from the circular dichroism spectra, which reveal the change of the albumin conformation during the interaction process.
Agro tourism, One of the Main Factors in Rural Development
Aurica Grigore,George Ungureanu
Acta Universitatis Danubius : Oeconomica , 2008,
Abstract: The paper describes the steps in projecting agro-tourism activity and it presents the issues and opportunities that show the importance ofagro tourism activity as source of improving the income of small agricultural households. This paper examines the effects of agro tourism activity onstandard small agricultural household - A and it is presented the empirical evaluation of agro tourism effects on resource distribution within a smallagricultural household A as on net income.
The Income of Meat Products in Galati County
Aurica Grigore,Cornelia Tureac
Acta Universitatis Danubius : Oeconomica , 2008,
Abstract: The work has proposed to study the supply and the demand of the production from on sale Galati County, starting from the requirementsof population consumptions, from the existing funds for the growth of animal production and from the requirements and the potential that can beexpected. The sale of meat products is low enough, due to the reduced number of animals, small productions and the reduced production average onhectare. Weak economical and productivity performances are resistant by minimization of the self-consuming through the limit of surviving.
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