Importance of erythropoietin in septic encephalopathyErythropoietin (EPO) is a 31-kDa glycoprotein that has long been studied for its role in hematopoiesis. However, more recent evidence suggests that in addition to its biological functions in the hematopoietic system, EPO may have significant activity in the brain [1–3]. More specific functions in the brain have been proposed, including EPO as a neuroprotective agent against excitotoxicity and apopotosis, as well as EPO enhancing the proliferation and mobilization of neuronal stem cells [4,5].
The Iliad and the Odyssey of metallic foreign body extraction: commentary on “Novel methods of removing metallic foreign body from human soft tissue: a report of 7390 cases”Surgeons have been extracting metallic foreign bodies (MFB) for centuries. Perhaps the earliest literary account comes from Homer's epic poem The Iliad (ca BC 800), based on events of the Trojan War from Greek mythology. Makaon operated on an arrow wound to the abdomen of King Menelaus by extracting the arrow, sucking blood from the wound to remove poison, and applying a salve : The shaft he drew, but left the head behind. Straight the broad belt with gay embroidery graced, He loosed; the corslet from his breast unbraced; Then suck'd the blood, and sovereign balm infused, Which Chron gave, and Aesculapius used .
Radicicol, a Hsp90 inhibitor, inhibits intestinal inflammation and leakage in abdominal sepsisSepsis complex syndromes remain active challenges in critical care medicine because of a deficiency in understanding the molecular basis and cellular signaling network of such infections. We hope that the 21st century will witness a revolution in discovering and targeting the cellular and molecular roots of this clinical entity. Severe sepsis with multiple organ dysfunction remains the most common cause of mortality in noncardiac intensive care units and is ranked as the 10th leading cause of death in the US .
The long and winding road to immune toleranceNo matter how many new immunosuppressive medications reach the market, the “Holy Grail” of transplantation has always been (and according to some will continue to “always” be) the induction of donor-specific immunologic tolerance. In this effort to modulate the immune system, there have been a multitude of different approaches and candidates at the cellular or molecular level. Dendritic cells (DC), as possibly the most effective antigen presenting cells, appear to play a critical role in moderating the immune response.
Strategies to prevent sepsis-induced intensive care unit–acquired weakness: are there any options? Commentary on “Comparison of melatonin and oxytocin in the prevention of critical illness polyneuropathy in rats with surgically induced sepsis”Intensive care unit-acquired weakness (ICUAW) is one of the leading causes of morbidity in critically ill patients and a significant risk factor for the development of chronic critical illness. In 2008, 727,000 patients were hospitalized for sepsis, with mortality rate of 17% at an estimated cost of $14.6 billion . The risk of critical illness neuromuscular abnormalities in patients with sepsis, multiorgan failure, or prolonged mechanical ventilation is reported to be as high as 46% .
Efficient selection of Gal-knockout pig cells for somatic cell nuclear transferThe process of selecting transgenic cells has been one of the bottlenecks in the generation of transgenic animals by somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT). In particular, selection for the Gal double-knockout (Gal-DKO) genotype has been time consuming and inefficient. The objective of this work was to generate a highly efficient system to select Gal-DKO cells to be used in SCNT without affecting the efficiency in production of Gal-null pigs.
Anti-inflammatory effects of linalool in RAW 264.7 macrophages and lipopolysaccharide-induced lung injury modelInflammation, characterized by redness, swelling, pain and a sensation of heat, is one of the body’s self-defense systems. Although the inflammation response has an important role in host survival, it also leads to chronic inflammatory diseases. Linalool is a natural compound of the essential oils in several aromatic plants species. It possesses anti-inflammatory, antinociceptive, and other bioactive properties. In the present study, we investigated the protective effects of linalool on inflammation in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-stimulated RAW 264.7 cells and an LPS-induced in vivo lung injury model.
Participation of autophagy in lung ischemia–reperfusion injury in vivoIn response to stress, autophagy is activated and may present as a cell survival mechanism or lead to cell death. Although there has been some progress in studying the function of autophagy in the ischemia–reperfusion (I/R) injury of other organs, little is known about the role autophagy plays in lung I/R injury.
Intraoperative stress in cardiac surgery: Attendings versus residentsPerforming cardiac surgery is associated with stress for surgeons. We investigated stress levels of experienced surgeons and trainees during coronary artery bypass graft teaching procedures.
Predictive value of pleural and serum interleukin-6 levels for pneumonia and hypo-oxygenations after esophagectomyPulmonary complications after esophagectomy continue to be a significant cause of morbidity and mortality. Although several factors have been implicated to be associated with pulmonary complications after esophagectomy, the prediction of pulmonary complications remains a challenge. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the predictive value of cytokine levels in sera and pleural drainage fluid for pneumonia and hypo-oxygenations following esophagectomy.
Force recovery and axonal regeneration of the sternomastoid muscle reinnervated with the end-to-end nerve anastomosisEnd-to-end nerve anastomosis (EEA) is a commonly used nerve repair technique. However, this method generally results in poor functional recovery. This study was designed to determine the correlation of functional recovery to the extent of axonal reinnervation after EEA procedure in a rat model.
Alpha tocopherol treatment reduces the expression of Nogo-A and NgR in rat brain after traumatic brain injuryNeurite outgrowth inhibitor-A (Nogo-A), myelin-associated glycoprotein, and oligodendrocyte myelin glycoprotein are three myelin-associated proteins that act as inhibitors to central nervous system regeneration. Neurite outgrowth inhibitor-A imposes the strongest effect on inhibiting axonal regeneration after traumatic brain injury. Alpha-tocopherol, a member of the vitamin E family, is recognized as an active antioxidative substance. Its use has not been well studied in brain injury research, especially in axonal regeneration research.
Corrigendum for the paper “Platonin mitigates acute lung injury induced by bilateral lower limb ischemia-reperfusion in rats”The authors would like to correct an error printed in our article on the effects of platonin against lung injury induced by bilateral lower limb ischemia-reperfusion in rats . The correct Figure 2 is shown below. We wish to express our sincere apology for this error.
Commentary on “Defining and predicting surgeon utilization at Forward Surgical Teams in Afghanistan”In a recently published paper in the Journal of Surgical Research, Remick et al.  discuss contrasts between two Forward Surgical Teams deployed to Afghanistan during Operation Enduring Freedom during two separate time periods. Forward Surgical Teams are currently the smallest unit available to the US Army to provide resuscitative surgery in the field. These units, and variations, have been pushed farther afield in an effort to provide far-forward resuscitative capacity for our injured service members in the conflict in the Middle East.
Inhibition of hydrogen sulfide generation contributes to lung injury after experimental orthotopic lung transplantationLung injury induced by ischemia or reperfusion significantly accounts for the risk of early mortality of lung transplantation (LT). Recent studies have demonstrated that hydrogen sulfide (H2S) and its endogenous synthase cystathionine-γ-lyase (CSE) confer protection against injury induced by ischemia or reperfusion in various organs. This prompted us to define the role of CSE/H2S pathway in transplantation-induced lung injury.
Bone marrow–derived cells participate in the long-term remodeling in a mouse model of esophageal reconstructionThe default response of the esophagus to injury includes inflammation and scar tissue formation often leading to stricture. Biologic scaffolds composed of extracellular matrix (ECM) have been associated with the reconstitution of functional esophageal tissue in preclinical studies and clinical case reports of esophageal mucosal resection, anastomotic reinforcement, and full circumferential replacement. However, the mechanisms responsible for this change in the default response to esophageal injury are not fully understood.
Angiotensin II as a limiting agent to intracellular calcium signaling in inflammatory statesAngiotensin II, the end product of the renal angiotensin system, is well known for its role in increasing peripheral vascular resistance and subsequent elevation in blood pressure in a clinical setting. The regulatory effect of angiotensin II on growth factors and inflammatory cytokines in an immunologic setting is less known but equally important aspect of this protein molecule. In a recently published article in the Journal of Surgical Research, Lo et al. has expanded on this topic by exploring the role of angiotensin II.
Infrared thermography of cutaneous melanoma metastasesDifferentiating melanoma metastasis from benign cutaneous lesions currently requires biopsy or costly imaging, such as positron emission tomography scans. Melanoma metastases have been observed to be subjectively warmer than similarly appearing benign lesions. We hypothesized that infrared (IR) thermography would be sensitive and specific in differentiating palpable melanoma metastases from benign lesions.
Commentary: Empiric antibiotics pending bronchoalveolar lavage data in patients without pneumonia significantly alters the flora but not the resistance profile if a subsequent pneumonia developsVentilator-associated pneumonia (VAP), defined as pneumonia that occurs within 48–72 h of endotracheal intubation, has been reported to occur in up to 52% of critically ill patients . VAP is associated with increased morbidity, mortality, the length of hospital stay, and excess costs . Given the magnitude of the problem, there has been an impetus to identify processes of care that are linked to outcome such as appropriate antibiotic coverage and timing in patients with suspected VAP. In 2005, the American Thoracic Society (ATS) and Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) published the consensus guidelines for the management of VAP.
Radical gastrectomy with para-aortic lymphadenectomy for carcinoma? The controversy continues. Commentary on Risk Factors for Metastasis to Para-Aortic Lymph Nodes in Gastric Cancer: A Single Institution Study in China. Journal of Surgical ResearchGastric cancer is the fourth most common cancer worldwide and the second leading cause of cancer death. The highest incidence of gastric cancer is in Eastern Asia. China has 463,000 new cases a year, whereas the United States as an annual incidence of 21,000 cases . Intestinal type gastric cancer is more prevalent in high-risk areas and is influenced by environmental factors. Because the incidence and histology are variable by region, there remains significant worldwide controversy regarding management of the disease.
The dream: A leadership fableR. Buckingham Daniels1—“Buck” to most people—was as cool as a cucumber as he was rolled down the hall to the operating room. Maybe it was the premedication. Maybe it was because he would not be under anesthesia for very long; the procedure was relatively minor, and he had great confidence in his surgeon. Maybe it was because he had been a practicing surgeon for 30 years and knew the drill. Maybe it was because he knew that, as head of the medical center, he would receive extra good care. Or, maybe it was because he had a lot on his mind: his hospital's growing number of uninsured patients, decreasing reimbursement, and disgruntled physicians—realities he did not want to deal with.
Selective occlusion of the portal vein while maintaining hepatic artery blood flow during partial hepatectomy: a new method for preventing ischemia-reperfusion injury?The liver is an essential multifunctional organ with diverse vital functions in nutrient metabolism, blood and bile formation, detoxification, and hormone production. Liver function can be impaired by drug and alcohol abuse, food and environmental toxins, metabolic disorders, viral infections, and congenital defects. Primary liver cancer and liver metastases, primarily from colorectal cancer, can also cause life-threatening damage to the liver . Depending on comorbidities, tumor size, and the segmental distribution of tumors in the liver, the techniques of ablation, resection, or liver transplantation remain the most important and successful treatment modalities for primary and secondary liver cancer [2,3].
Experimental study on the effect of controlled hypotension levels on rabbit CA1 neuronsThe present study investigated the effect of controlled hypotension (CH) levels regulated by nitroprusside on hippocampal CA1 neurons.
Early laparotomy wound failure as the mechanism for incisional hernia formationIncisional hernia is the most common complication of abdominal surgery leading to reoperation. In the United States, 200,000 incisional hernia repairs are performed annually, often with significant morbidity. Obesity is increasing the risk of laparotomy wound failure.
A blood test for acute rejection after renal transplantation? Commentary on “Osteopontin level correlates with acute cellular renal allograft rejection”End-stage renal disease affects over 500,000 patients each year in the United States. Currently, over 92,000 people wait on the kidney transplant list in the United States alone, where approximately 16,000 transplants occur annually . With such a discrepancy between supply and demand, graft survival is critical. Yet, even with advances in transplantation technique and immunosuppression, year one acute rejection rates remain between 10% and 20% . Acute rejection begins subclinically and progression may lead to irreversible organ damage or graft loss.