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Canadian Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology publishes studies of areas related to medical, surgical, pathological, biochemical and physiological aspects of gastroenterology and hepatology.
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Prevalence of Esophageal Eosinophilia, Eosinophilic Esophagitis, and Lymphocytic Gastritis in Children with Celiac Disease: A Saudi Tertiary Center Experience
Background. Celiac disease (CD) is an immune-mediated enteropathy that has been associated with other immune-related gastrointestinal disorders, such as eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) and lymphocytic gastritis (LG). To our knowledge, this is the first study in Saudi Arabia that has described such an association. Aim. To evaluate the prevalence of EoE and LG in children and adolescents with CD. Methods. This was a retrospective cross-sectional study of all pediatric patients (aged 0–18 years) with CD following up at King Abdulaziz University Hospital, between January, 2014, and December, 2021. The study examined clinical, demographic, endoscopic, and histopathological data. Results. Seventy-five patients with CD were included in the analysis. The median age was 12 years (range, 2–18 years). Male constituted 54.7% of the overall cohort (n = 41). The most common clinical symptoms were short stature (54.7%), weight loss (34.7%), abdominal pain (33.3%), abdominal distension (29.3%), anorexia (29.3%), diarrhea (24%), and vomiting (21.3%). The esophageal biopsy results reported were basal cell hyperplasia in 24 patients (32.9%), esophageal eosinophilia in 23 patients (31.5%), and EoE in 3 patients (4.1%). The gastric biopsy results were normal in 40 patients (53.3%). The most common abnormality was chronic inactive gastritis with no Helicobacter pylori (HP) infection (16%). LG was found in 3 patients (4%). Conclusions. The prevalence of EoE in this cohort of patients with CD was lower than the prevalence recorded in a number of other studies. Further studies are needed to determine the effects of a gluten-free diet (GFD) on EOE and LG.
Ghrelin/GHSR Axis Induced M2 Macrophage and Alleviated Intestinal Barrier Dysfunction in a Sepsis Rat Model by Inactivating E2F1/NF-κB Signaling
Sepsis is an inflammatory reaction disorder state that is induced by infection. The activation and regulation of the immune system play an essential role in the development of sepsis. Our previous studies have shown that ghrelin ameliorates intestinal dysfunction in sepsis. Very little is known about the mechanism of ghrelin and its receptor (GHSR) on the intestinal barrier and the immune function of macrophage regulation. Our research is to investigate the regulatory effect and molecular mechanism of the ghrelin/GHSR axis on intestinal dysfunction and macrophage polarization in septic rats. A rat model of sepsis was established by cecal ligation and puncture (CLP) operation. Then, the sepsis rats were treated with a ghrelin receptor agonist (TZP-101) or ghrelin inhibitor (obestatin). The results suggested that TZP-101 further enhanced ghrelin and GHSR expressions in the colon and spleen of septic rats and obestatin showed the opposite results. Ghrelin/GHSR axis ameliorated colonic structural destruction and intestinal epithelial tight junction injury in septic rats. In addition, the ghrelin/GHSR axis promoted M2-type polarization of macrophages, which was characterized by the decreases of IL-1β, IL-6, and TNF-α, as well as the increase of IL-10. Mechanistically, the ghrelin/GHSR axis promoted E2F2 expression and suppressed the activation of the NF-κB signaling pathway in septic rats. Collectively, targeting ghrelin/GHSR during sepsis may represent a novel therapeutic approach for the treatment of intestinal barrier injury.
Prevalence of Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C Viral Infections and Their Associated Factors among Diabetic Patients Visiting Debre Tabor Referral Hospital, Northwest Ethiopia, 2021: A Cross-Sectional Study
Background. Viral hepatitis is a global public health problem that affects millions of people each year, causing disability and death. Hepatitis B and C viruses are the most common causes of viral hepatitis and are associated with chronic liver disease, cirrhosis, and hepatocellular carcinoma. The primary site of infection for these viruses is the liver, the primary site of hormone and glucose metabolism closely linked to diabetes mellitus (DM), which is associated with increased morbidity and mortality worldwide. As a result, assessing the coexistence of viral hepatitis and DM could be important in disease management, prevention, and control measures in DM patients. Objective. The aim of our study is to assess the prevalence and associated factors of HBV and HCV among diabetes patients attending Debre Tabor Referral Hospital. Methods. An institutional-based, cross-sectional study was conducted from December 1, 2021, to February 30, 2021. A systematic sampling technique was used for selecting study participants. Serum samples were screened with a rapid test kit for hepatitis B (HBV) and hepatitis C (HCV) infections. A pretested structured questionnaire was constructed to collect the data, which were later analyzed using SPSS version 23. Inferential statistics were used to evaluate the associated risk factors for the outcome variable. A value of <0.05 was considered statistically significant. Result. A total of 152 diabetes patients were included in this study, with 78 (51.3%) males and 74 (48.7%) females, with a mean age of 39.24 ± 17.90 years. The prevalence of HBV and HCV was 6 (3.9%) and 2 (1.3%), respectively. Most of potential risk factors such as, histories of surgical procedures, tooth extraction, hepatitis infection in the family, blood transfusion, alcohol consumption, body tattooing, and multiple sexual partners were not statistically significant for HBV and HCV infections. Conclusion. In this study, no association was obtained between sociodemographic, clinical, and behavioural factors and the prevalence of hepatitis B and C viruses. Furthermore, there is no significant association detected between HBV or potential HCV infection and DM. Despite these results, continuing professional training programs on HBV and HCV infection, including increased vaccination coverage rates for HBV, are required.
Combined Age with Mean Decrease Rates of Total Bilirubin and MELD Score as a Novel and Simple Clinical Predictor on 90-Day Transplant-Free Mortality in Adult Patients with Acute Liver Failure Undergoing Plasma Exchange: A Single-Center Retrospective Study
Background. Acute liver failure (ALF), previously known as fulminant hepatic failure, has become a common, rapidly progressive, and life-threatening catastrophic hepatic disease in intensive care unit (ICU) due to the continuous increase in drug abuse, viral infection, metabolic insult, and auto-immune cause. At present, plasma exchange (PE) is the main effective alternative treatment for ALF in ICU clinical practice, and high-volume plasma exchange (HVP) has been listed as a grade I recommendation for ALF management in the American Society for Apheresis (ASFA) guidelines. However, no existing models can provide a satisfactory performance for clinical prediction on 90-day transplant-free mortality in adult patients with ALF undergoing PE. Our study aims to identify a novel and simple clinical predictor of 90-day transplant-free mortality in adult patients with ALF undergoing PE. Methods. This retrospective study contained adult patients with ALF undergoing PE from the Medical ICU (MICU) in the Second Affiliated Hospital of Harbin Medical University between January 2017 and December 2020. Baseline and clinical data were collected and calculated on admission to ICU before PE, including gender, age, height, weight, body mass index (BMI), etiology, total bilirubin, direct bilirubin, indirect bilirubin, prothrombin activity, model for end-stage liver disease (MELD) score, and sequential organ failure assessment (SOFA) score. Enrolled adult patients with ALF undergoing PE were divided into a survival group and a death group at discharge and 90 days on account of medical records and telephone follow-up. After each PE, decreased rates of total bilirubin and MELD score and increased rates of prothrombin activity were calculated according to the clinical parameters. In clinical practice, different patients underwent different times of PE, and thus, mean decrease rates of total bilirubin and MELD score and mean increase rate of prothrombin activity were obtained for further statistical analysis. Results. A total of 73 adult patients with ALF undergoing 204 PE were included in our retrospective study, and their transplant-free mortality at discharge and 90 days was 6.85% (5/73) and 31.51% (23/73), respectively. All deaths could be attributed to ALF-induced severe and life-threatening complications or even multiple organ dysfunction syndrome (MODS). Most of the enrolled adult patients with ALF were men (76.71%, 56/73), with a median age of 48.77 years. Various hepatitis virus infections, unknown etiology, auto-immune liver disease, drug-induced liver injury, and acute pancreatitis (AP) accounted for 75.34%, 12.33%, 6.85%, 4.11%, and 1.37% of the etiologies in adult patients with ALF, respectively. Univariate analysis showed a significant difference in age, mean decrease rates of total bilirubin and MELD score mean increase rate of prothrombin activity, decrease rates of total bilirubin and MELD score, and increase rate of prothrombin activity after the first PE between the death group and survival group. Multivariate analysis showed that age and mean decrease rates of total bilirubin and MELD score were closely associated with 90-day transplant-free mortality in adult patients with ALF undergoing PE. The 90-day transplant-free mortality was 1.081, 0.908, and 0.893 times of the original value with each one-unit increase in age and mean decrease rates of total bilirubin and MELD score, respectively. The areas under the receiver operatingcharacteristic (ROC) curve of age, mean decrease rates of total bilirubin and MELD score, and the three combined were 0.689, 0.225, 0.123, and 0.912, respectively. The cut-off values of age, mean decrease rates of total bilirubin and MELD score, and the three combined were 61.50, 3.12, 1.21, and 0.33, respectively. The specificity and sensitivity of combined age with mean decrease rates of total bilirubin and MELD score for predicting 90-day transplant-free mortality in adult patients with ALF undergoing PE were 87% and 14%. Conclusion. Combined age with mean decrease rates of total bilirubin and MELD score as a novel and simple clinical predictor can accurately predict 90-day transplant-free mortality in adult patients with ALF undergoing PE, which is worthy of application and promotion in clinical practice, especially in the identification of potential transplant candidates.
A2ML1 Inhibits Esophageal Squamous Cell Carcinoma Progression and Serves as a Novel Prognostic Biomarker
Studies have established a correlation between α2-macroglobulin-like 1 (A2ML1) and the prognosis of lung, pancreatic, and breast cancers; however, research on its involvement in the pathogenesis of esophageal carcinoma remains limited. Therefore, in this study, we aimed to investigate the role of A2ML1 in the progression of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC). Immunohistochemical staining was employed to assess the expression level of A2ML1 protein in both tumor and adjacent normal tissues of patients with ESCC. The Kaplan–Meier method, along with univariate and multivariate Cox risk ratio analyses, was used to determine survival rates and prognostic factors. Furthermore, two human ESCC cell lines, KYSE30 and KYSE150, were used to assess the effect of A2ML1 overexpression on cell proliferation and apoptosis. A human apoptosis antibody kit was also used to analyze the downstream action proteins of A2ML1, and a nude mouse xenotransplantation model was used to evaluate the effect of A2ML1 on ESCC tumorigenesis in vivo. The protein level of A2ML1 in ESCC tissues was significantly lower than that in normal esophageal tissues, and higher A2ML1 protein levels were associated with smaller ESCC tumor sizes and improved tumor-specific survival rates. Multivariate analysis established A2ML1 as a novel independent prognostic factor for ESCC. Moreover, A2ML1 overexpression significantly inhibited ESCC cell proliferation and promoted apoptosis. A2ML1 consistently inhibited tumor growth in mouse models. Furthermore, the human apoptotic antibody kit results showed increased expression of the proliferation-inhibiting protein p21 downstream of KYSE150 cells overexpressing A2ML1. Our findings demonstrate that a correlation exists between A2ML1 and ESCC prognosis and that A2ML1 plays an antitumor role in ESCC progression. This study underscores the potential of A2ML1 as a novel biomarker for predicting the prognosis of ESCC.
miR-325-3p Reduces Proliferation and Promotes Apoptosis of Gastric Cancer Cells by Inhibiting Human Antigen R
Human antigen R (HuR), also known as ELAVL1, is a widely expressed RNA-binding protein (RBP) that has a significant impact on the development and advancement of tumors. Our previous study found that 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) may impede the proliferation and increase apoptosis in gastric cancer cells by reducing the nucleocytoplasmic shuttling of HuR. However, how posttranscriptional regulation influences HuR functions in gastric cancer remains to be elucidated. Here, we demonstrated that miR-325-3p has the potential to regulate the expression level of HuR by directly binding to its 3′UTR, which in turn led to a significant reduction in proliferation and an increase in apoptosis in gastric cancer cells. In addition, xenograft experiment showed that knockdown of HuR or overexpression of miR-325-3p group exhibited smaller tumor sizes after transplant of gastric cancer cells into zebrafish larvae. Thus, our findings offer new insights into the pathogenesis of gastric cancer and may potentially assist in identifying novel targets for drug therapy.