Autophagy, a cellular homeostatic pathway, is emerged as an innate immune response against intracellular
pathogens. It can directly eliminate invading bacteria by mediating their delivery to lysosomes. However, successful
intracellular pathogens have developed mechanism(s) to escape or subvert autophagy for their intracellular niches.
Studies on interplay between autophagy and intracellular pathogens are very important for understanding how
infections occur. Particularly, Staphylococcus aureus is an important opportunistic pathogen that causes a wide range of infections. Classically, S. aureus is considered as an extracellular pathogen, but cumulative evidence indicates that
this bacterium invades epithelial cells and replicates intracellularly which is relevant to intracellular persistence and
chronic infections. A serious therapeutic problem of staphylococcal infections is caused by antibiotic resistant strains
which have emerged increasingly in recent years. Thus, new insights in the strategy of S. aureus to interplay with
autophagy is urgently required. This review highlights an impact of S. aureus toxins on autophagy. Alpha-hemolysin
activates autophagy and prevents lysosome-autophagosome fusion, whereas toxic shock syndrome toxin-1 suppresses
autophagosome formation. This opposite function indicates a complicated relationship between autophagy and
intracellular adaptation of S. aureus. The possible effects of these toxins on S. aureus infections are also addressed in
We analyzed the effects of halothane as an inhalational anesthetic agent on electrocardiogram (ECG) parameters in C57/BL6 mice. Following induction of anesthesia using 2% halothane, the ECGs showed a regular
pattern and the heart rate (HR) was within an acceptable range (~500 bpm). The HR decreased with increasing
halothane concentration in a concentration-dependent fashion.
The frequency domain analysis showed that the high-frequency (HF) component decreased and the lowfrequency (LF) component increased in a concentration-dependent fashion. Therefore, the LF/HF ratio increased
with increasing halothane concentration, suggesting effects on the autonomic nervous system.
We analyzed the pharmacological response to sympathetic blockade with propranolol, a typical adrenergic
β-blocker, under halothane anesthesia. Propranolol administration resulted in a decreased HR; interestingly,
intraperitoneal injection of propranolol (120 μg/kg body weight) resulted in arrhythmia (sick sinus syndrome) during anesthesia with 3% halothane.
Our results indicate the importance of selecting a suitable anesthetic agent for C57/BL6 mice in pharmacological studies.
We examined the effects of enflurane anesthesia on the mouse cardiac autonomic nervous system using
electrocardiogram (ECG) analysis. Enflurane had a lower effect on heart rate (HR) compared to isoflurane, which is
more widely used in small animal studies. Under anesthesia with 3 or 4% of enflurane, administration of propranolol
had a significant effect on HR. Enflurane increased R-R interval length in a dose-dependent fashion, and the R-R
interval became unstable at high concentrations. Although HR decreased with high doses of enflurane, we observed
normal sinus rhythm and no arrhythmia. These results suggest that the effect of enflurane anesthesia is acceptable
even though the drug can lead to cardiac instability. No remarkable changes were observed in HR frequency. These
results suggest that enflurane anesthesia may be suitable for cardiac autonomic nervous system analysis.
Background: Retrievable inferior vena cava (IVC) filter devices have been developed to overcome the
long-term complications of permanent filters. It is of interest to evaluate the retrievability of retrievable IVC filters
and how safely the IVC filters indwelled for a long period of time can be retrieved. We reviewed a group of 44
patients, who were selected for ALN retrievable filter implantation and reviewed the indications, efficacy as well as
complications. Material and Methods: 300 venous thromboembolism (VTE) patients were treated in our institution between
2003 and 2014. IVC filters were inserted in 84 cases (28%) and 44 of 84 patients received ALN retrievable filter
implantation. We retrospectively reviewed the indications, efficacy and complications of 44 patients with ALN filters.
Results: All 44 patients had deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and 39 patients (88.6%) also had pulmonary embolism (PE).
The most frequent associated risk factor for DVT was cancer (n=19). The filter was implanted for a median duration
of 708.8 days (range 68-1717). While the filter was in place, at least one venous thromboembolic event occurred in 4.5% (2 of 44 patients）. Filter retrieval was attempted in 8 patients (18.2%) after a median period of 271.9 days (range 79 - 559）. Filter retrievals were successful in all cases. Conclusion: This study showed the efficacy of ALN filter. It also demonstrated the safety of retrieval after a long-term placement.
We conducted an observational gait assessment and examined the relationship of gait deviations with
physical function and walking ability. A total of 57 stroke patients admitted to a rehabilitation unit, who could walk
unaided or under close supervision, were enrolled in the study (37 men; 20 women; 62.2 ± 11.2 years of age; elapsed time since the onset of stroke: 90.9 ± 39.9 days). We combined and partially modified several assessment forms used for gait evaluation. With regard to physical functions, we assessed: lower limb paralysis, sensory impairment, lower limb spasticity, range of motion, lower limb muscle strength, lower limb weight-bearing, and standing balance.
We conducted a 10-meter walk test to assess patients' walking ability. In order to identify variables that affect
the total gait assessment score, a multiple regression analysis was performed. The following parameters were
statistically associated with gait deviations: number of steps required to walk 10 meters (standard partial regression
coefficient=0.68), affected side hip abductor strength (–0.23), ankle plantar flexor spasticity (0.18), and maximum
weight-bearing rate on the unaffected side (0.16). We established the relationship of gait deviations with physical
function and walking ability.