Community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) refers to infectious inflammation of the lung parenchyma developing outside of a hospital. CAP has quite a high mortality and morbidity rate worldwide, and especially among elderly patients. The increasing burden of CAP is due to antibiotic resistance, the growth of the elderly population, and underlying comorbidities. Streptococcus pneumoniae remains the most common bacterial pathogen causing CAP, but multi-drug resistance bacteria and potential pathogens have increased the difficulty and challenges of managing CAP. Although preventive measures, diagnostic techniques, and treatment strategies are constantly advancing and improving, the susceptibility of multi-drug resistant pathogens, such as including Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Klebsiella pneumoniae, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, has not improved significantly in recent decades, thus highlighting the importance and necessity of developing new antibiotics for the treatment of CAP. New antimicrobials have been approved over the past few years that will expand treatment options for CAP, and especially for patients with potential comorbidities. This situation also offers the chance to reduce the abuse of antibiotics, their toxicities, and their adverse reactions and to provide effective personalized antibiotic treatment.
Breast cancer diagnosed during pregnancy poses ethical and professional challenges. Clinical management of that condition should ensure the safety of both the mother and fetus. Clinical trials on breast cancer exclude pregnant women, so sufficient evidence with which to formulate guidelines for the management of these patients is lacking. Failing to undergo a breast examination during pregnancy, breast symptoms explained by physiological changes such as pregnancy, and unnecessary abortions after the diagnosis of breast cancer lead to worse outcomes for these patients. Multidisciplinary teams including breast surgeons, obstetricians, radiologists, pathologists, and anesthesiologists need to make an early diagnosis and comprehensively evaluate patients in different gestational weeks and with different stages of breast cancer in order to optimize outcomes.
Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), especially Chinese herbal medicines and acupuncture, has been traditionally used to treat patients with cancers in China and other East Asian countries. Numerous studies have indicated that TCM not only alleviates the symptoms (e.g., fatigue, chronic pain, anorexia/cachexia, and insomnia) of patients with cancer and improves their quality of life (QOL) but also diminishes adverse reactions and complications caused by chemotherapy, radiotherapy, or targeted-therapy. Therefore, Chinese herbal medicines and acupuncture and other alternative therapies need to be understood by TCM physicians and other health care providers. This review mainly summarizes the experimental results and conclusions from literature published since 2010, and a search of the literature as been performed in the PubMed, MEDLINE, Web of Science, Scopus, Springer, ScienceDirect, and China Hospital Knowledge Database (CHKD) databases. Some Chinese herbal medicines (e.g., Panax ginseng, Panax quinquefolius, Astragali radix, Bu-zhong-yi-qi-tang (TJ-41), Liu-jun-zi-tang (TJ-43), Shi-quan-da-bu-tang (TJ-48), and Ban-xia-xie-xin-tang (TJ-14)) and some acupuncture points (e.g., Zusanli (ST36), Zhongwan (CV12), Neiguan (PC6) and Baihui (GV20)) that are commonly used to treat cancer-related symptoms and/or to reduce the toxicity of chemotherapy, radiotherapy, or targeted-therapy are highlighted and summarized. Through a review of literature, we conclude that TCM can effectively alleviate adverse gastrointestinal reactions (including diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting) to these anti-cancer therapies, decrease the incidence of bone marrow suppression, alleviate cardiotoxicity, and protect against chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy and radiation-induced pneumonitis. Moreover, TCM can alleviate epidermal growth factor receptor-tyrosine kinase inhibitor (EGFR-TKI)-related acneiform eruptions, diarrhea, and other adverse reactions. The hope is that this review can contribute to an understanding of TCM as an adjuvant therapy for cancer and that it can provide useful information for the development of more effective anti-cancer therapies. However, more rigorously designed trials involving cancer treatment must be conducted in the future, including complete quality control and standardized models at the cellular, organic, animal and clinical levels, in order to study TCM in multiple forms and at multiple levels.
Obesity and related metabolic diseases have become one of the world's most serious public health problems. Bariatric surgery has gone through a long and difficult development process, from being rejected to gradually recognized, then widely accepted, and finally becoming the "gold standard" for the treatment of morbid obesity with metabolic diseases. Procedures have constantly been improving and evolving as the concept of bariatric surgery has been reappraised. The comparison and selection of different procedures, the emergence of new technologies and treatment methods, and the in-depth study of the mechanism of metabolic weight loss surgery are effectively promoting the rapid development of bariatric surgery. This article looks at both the 2014 and 2019 editions of the Guidelines for Diagnosis and Treatment of Obesity and Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus from the Chinese Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (CSMBS), its review the development of bariatric surgery, and it describes surgical indications and contraindications, the mechanism of weight loss, and tailored selection of the surgical procedure in order to serve as a reference.
Obesity is a public health concern that is becoming increasingly more serious around the world. Bariatric surgery has become more prevalent due to the obesity epidemic worldwide. Sleeve gastrectomy (SG) is one of the most popular procedures which is safe and efficient. Despite all its favorable features, however, there is an increasing evidence from the literature that the long-term incidence of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is likely to represent the Achilles' heel of this procedure. Management of severe reflux after SG usually requires revisional surgery. The relationship between SG and GERD needs to be better ascertained in order to prevent related complications, such as esophageal adenocarcinoma. This review attempts to elucidate the effect of SG on GERD and the postoperative management of reflux disease according to recent literature in the hope of drawing the attention of clinicians to postoperative gastroesophageal reflux and guiding the optimal management strategy associated with this "troublesome complication".
Diabetes along with related comorbidities associated with high disability rates severely threatens human health. The etiology of diabetes is complex. Genetics, environmental factors, eating habits, drug usage, aging, and lack of movement play important roles in the development of diabetes. Intestinal flora is reportedly closely related to the occurrence and development of type 2 diabetes. Herein, we review changes in abundance and proportion of intestinal flora in patients with type 2 diabetes and regulation of intestinal flora through diet, drugs, and surgery to prevent and treat type 2 diabetes. A more appropriate clinical diagnosis and treatment plan could be made considering changes in intestinal flora in the future.
Antipsychotic-induced metabolic dysfunction (AIMD) is an intractable clinical challenge worldwide. The situation is becoming more critical as second-generation antipsychotics (SGAs), to a great extent, have replaced the role of first-generation antipsychotics in managing major psychiatric disorders. Although the exact mechanisms for developing AIMD is intricate, emerging evidence has indicated the involvement of the microbiota-gut-brain axis in AIMD. SGAs treatment may change the diversity and compositions of intestinal flora (e.g., decreased abundance of Bacteroidetes and Akkermansia muciniphila, and increased Firmicutes). Short-chain fatty acids and other metabolites derived from gut microbiota, on the one hand, can regulate the activity of intestinal endocrine cells and their secretion of satiety hormones (e.g., glucagon-like peptide 1, peptide YY, cholecystokinin and ghrelin); on the other hand, can activate the vagus nerve or transport into the brain to exert a central modulation of foraging behaviors via binding to neuropeptide receptors. Interestingly, metformin, a classical antidiabetic agent, is capable of alleviating AIMD possibly by regulating the microbiota-gut-brain axis. That is, metformin can not only partially reverse the alterations of gut microbial communities due to SGAs treatment, but also play a positive role in rectifying the disturbances of peripheral and central satiety-related neuropeptides. Current evidence has indicated a promising role for metformin on ameliorating AMID, but further verifications in well-designed clinical trials are still warranted.
Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disorder, which has become the leading cause of dementia cases globally. Synaptic failure is an early pathological feature of AD. However, the cause of synaptic failure in AD, especially the GABAergic synaptic activity remains unclear. Extensive evidence indicates that the presence of soluble amyloid-β is an early pathological feature in AD, which triggers synaptic dysfunction and cognitive decline. Our recent study explored the relation of GABAergic transmission and soluble Aβ in early APP/PS1 mice. Firstly, we found soluble Aβ42 levels were significantly increased in serum, hippocampus and prefrontal cortex in 3-4 months APP/PS1 mice, which was much earlier than Aβ plagues formation. In addition, we found TNF-α and BDNF expression levels were increased, while KCC2 and GABAAR expression were decreased in 3-4 months APP/PS1 hippocampus. When we treated 3-4 months APP/PS1 mice with a potent γ-secretase inhibitor, LY411575, which can reduce the soluble Aβ42 levels, the TNF-α and BDNF protein levels were decreased, while KCC2 and GABAAR levels were increased. In conclusion, our study suggested soluble Aβ may impaired the GABA inhibition by mediating KCC2 levels in early APP/PS1 mice. KCC2 may be served as a potential biomarker for AD.
Induced by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and its variants, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused a serious crisis for healthcare systems worldwide. COVID-19 vaccine coverage has increased in many countries, but the COVID-19 epidemic has rapidly expanded, with a daily increase of 30,390 COVID-19 cases and 9,761 deaths since August 12, 2021. This article provides a brief overview of growing concerns about a rebound of the COVID-19 pandemic caused by the Delta variant and public health epidemic control measures that have recently been relaxed. As of August 13, 2021, 465,679 cases of COVID-19 due to the Delta variant of SARS-CoV-2 have been detected in over 120 countries. Epidemic control measures were relaxed in some areas, such as allowing large gatherings and improper criteria for ending self-isolation. Even in China, where the epidemic was tightly controlled with strict non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs), new COVID-19 cases, and asymptomatic cases in particular, spiked in the first 13 days of August. More importantly, most of those cases were local, while most of the cases accounting for the previous increase were imported. Therefore, relaxed epidemic control measures and asymptomatic infections possibly caused by the Delta variant of SARS-CoV-2 may increase the risk of virus transmission. Accordingly, suggestions for COVID-19 containment, such as encouraging vaccination of the general population, using Internet of Things technology (loT) to reduce the possibility of contact with the asymptomatic infected, and enhancing disease surveillance, have been offered here.
Coronavirus disease 19 (COVID-19) continues to rage as a global pandemic. A number of potential therapeutic agents have been explored over the past year or two. However, numerous drugs that were expected to prove highly effective, such as lopinavir/ritonavir and remdesivir, have been found to have little benefit in large clinical trials. Interleukin-6 receptor antagonists, glucocorticoids, Janus kinase inhibitors, and some antivirals have been found to provide significant benefits in terms of reducing viral load, reducing the time of nucleic acid conversion, or improving survival. For example, bamlanivimab and etesevimab, which are newly designed monoclonal antibodies against the surface spike protein S1 subunit receptor-binding domain (RBD) of SARS-CoV-2, have a significant effect on reducing the viral load and the hospitalization rate of patients with mild COVID-19. Several vaccines against SARS-CoV-2 have been widely administered worldwide and have provided good protection. Nevertheless, the increasingly hardy variants of the virus have raised the requirements for vaccine design. Perhaps RBD-based vaccines are a viable way to defend against variants, but this still needs to be verified in a large sample. Therefore, this paper provides an update on the treatment options for COVID-19 based on three previously proposed dimensions of drug screening: standard assays of existing broad-spectrum antivirals, screening of chemical libraries, and redevelopment of new, specific drugs.