Effects of low temperature on corticoidogenesis (CG) were studied in isolated bovine adrenocortical cells. In the presence of Ca2+, cells were incubated with adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) at 27°C and 37°C for 1 hour. After the incubation, the amount of corticoid was measured fluorometrically. After the incubation at 27°C, as compared with that at 37°C, the CGs induced by 10pM and 1nM ACTH decreased, but the CG induced by 10nM ACTH was not affected. Even in the absence of extracellular Ca2+, 10nM ACTH could induce the same degree of CGs at 37°C and 27°C, There was no difference in the amount of conversion of 25-hydroxycholesterol to corticoid between the incubations at 37°C and 27°C. The amount of conversion at 20°C, however, was significantly lower. Our study shows that Ca2+ is not an important second messenger for CG at 27°C, and that the enzyme activity beyond side chain cleavage of cholesterol (SCC) does not diminish. Because cyclic AMP and Ca2+ are known as second messengers of ACTH, it is suggested that cyclic AMP plays a more important role than Ca2+ in CG during hypothermia and that ACTH not only stimulates SCC but also activates enzyme (s) beyond SCC to evoke CG in the case of deep hypothermia.
Effects of spa therapy on psychological factors were examined in 15 patients with bronchial asthma (10 females and 5 males, mean age 55.0 years) by CMI (Cornell Medical Index), SDS (Selfrating Depression Scale), CAI (Comprehensive Asthma Inventory) and SD (Semantic Differential). The results of these psychological examinations were compared before and after spa therapy for 1-2 months. 1. In CMI, mean point of physical symptoms decreased from 37.7 before spa therapy to 29.7 after the therapy. Mean improvement rate of the symptoms was 73.3%. The mean improvement rate was observed in 60.0% of respiratory symptoms, 66.7% of CIJ symptoms and 46.7% in psychical symptoms. 2. In SDS, many patients showed more than 40 points, suggesting that they have depressive mental state. The mean point decreased from 42.9 to 40.7 by spa therapy. 3. In CAI, categories of mental state, extent of conditioning, suggestion, fear of expectation, dependency, frustration and flight into illness, were clearly improved by spa therapy. 4. It was shown in SD that character of patients changed with beneficial trend for therapy of asthma after spa therapy. These results suggest that psychological disorders of patients with bronchial asthma are improved by spa therapy.
In rheumatoid arthritis (RA), the histological findings of the irradiated synovial membrane showed flattening of epithelial cells, decreased villous proliferation, narrowed vascular lumen, and reduced infiltration of inflammatory cells compared with nonirradiated synovia. However, the mechanisms of the action of low energy lasers in RA are unclear. In order to clarify the effects of low energy laser irradiation, the lymphoid cells in the RA synovial membrane were studied using immuno-histology and the cultured synovial cells were studied with an electron microscopy. The knee joints of 12 RA patients who had been scheduled for arthroplasty were irradiated with a gallium-aluminum-aresenide (Ga-Al-As) laser (790nm wavelength, 10-mW output) two to seven days before the surgical operation, at six points. On the day following the last irradiation, pieces of synovial membrane from the lateral irradiated area and from the medial nonirradiated area as a control were resected during the arthroplasty. The immuno-histological findings of the irradiated synovial membrane based on the peroxidase anti-peroxidase (PAP) method showed decreased CD4 cells in nine cases. A significant difference was seen in Wilcoxon's test (p<0.05). However the findings of the irradiated synovial membrane showed increased CD8 cells in two cases and decreased cells in seven cases. No significant difference was found by Wilcoxon's test on CD8 and CD4/8 of the irradiated synovial membrane. No significant difference in CD4 and CD8 of irradiated peripheral lymphoid cells was revealed by Wilcoxon's test. We noted histological changes (dilation of rER, hypertrophy of Golgi complexes, and decrease in secretions) on the irradiated cultured rheumatoid synovial cells observed by electron microscopy. These findings suggest that low energy laser irradiation decreased T lymphoid cells presumably through disturbance of cytokine secretion in synovial cells.
It is well known that exercise affects white blood cells. However, most studies on these effects were conducted on athletic persons or inactive persons. Therefore, we attempted to investigate the effects of exercise on leukocyte subsets in non-athletic healthy persons. The study was conducted on a total of 10 non-athletic healthy volunteers consisting of five men and five women. Blood samples were collected in the resting stage (B1), immediately after exercise (B2), and in the recovery phase (B3). Treadmill exercise was performed using the Bruce treadmill protocol. The mean recovery time of heart rate in the recovery phase was 6.6±0.6 minutes. Total leukocytes increased from 7, 290/μl to 10, 990/μl at the end of exercise (B2) mainly due to the increase in lymphocytes. The percentage of CD56 positive cells (mostly NK cells) in the lymphocyte population increased, CD3 positive cells (mostly T cells) decreased, and CD20 positive cells (mostly B cells) did not change immediately after exercise. The proportion of CD4 positive cells (mostly T helper/inducer cells) decreased after exercise (B2), whereas CD8 positive cells (mostly T cytotoxic/suppressor cells) were relatively unaffected. As a result, the ratio of CD4 to CD8 decreased. These changes almost returned to the pre-exercised levels in the recovery phase (B3). The cytotoxic capacity of the blood cell improved markedly immediately after exercise. However, the effect was transient.
The effect of octylphthalide (OP) bathing was compared with placebo bathing on patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). A liquid containing octylphthalide was dissolved in water of 40°C at a concentration of 10ppm. A liquid which has quite similar appearance and perfume to the above was used as a placebo. Double blind controlled study tests were performed. Twenty patients (10 for OP bathing and 10 for placebo bathing) were tested by single bathing, 33 other patients (16 patients for OP bathing and 17 for placebo bathing), by serial bathing for 30 days (once a day). After a single bathing, while grip strengths, tender joints scores, and 20m walking time improved significantly in the OP bathing group, only tender joint scores and 20m walking time improved significantly in the placebo bathing group. After serial bathing for 30 days, tender joint scores improved significantly in the OP bathing group, but no improvement was observed in the placebo bathing group. The above results suggest that OP bathing may be beneficial for RA patients, but further study may be needed.
We studied the effects of electro acupuncture stimulation of Baxie on local tolerance as an index of cold induced vasodilation (CIVD). The subjects consisted of 22 healthy adult volunteers. The skin temperature and skin blood flow in the middle finger were simultaneously examined before, during, and after immersion of the finger in cold water. Electroacupuncture stimulation at 1 Hz with a 66 to 100V intensity was performed for 5 minutes. Experiments of no stimulation and electroacupuncture stimulation were conducted on the same subject on different days. The results revealed the following: 1. CIVD was caused by rapid increase of skin blood flow during immersion of the finger in cold water. 2. The minimum skin temperature, minimum skin blood flow, maximum skin blood flow, mean skin temperature in the rising phase of skin temperature, and the index of resistance to frostbite of the electroacupuncture stimulated group were higher than those of the unstilmulated group, and rates of skin temperature increase and decrease during immersion of the finger in cold water in the electroacupuncture stimulated group were significantly higher. These results show that electroacupuncture stimulation increases local cold tolerance in the finger.
Physical factors are known to influence haemodynamics in the veins of the lower extremities. In a controlled randomized study we investigated the effects of combined physical therapy on varicose veins. Over a 24-wk period a treatment group consisting of 12 persons exercised under the activation by means of externally applied compression and cold temperature stimuli (i. e. thermosteresis). They also exercised once a day without supervision for 15min. During the same period a control group of 12 persons underwent the same measurements but no treatment. At baseline and in wk 24 the following measurements were made under standardarized conditions: venous capacity (ml/100ml of tissue) using a strain gauge plethysmograph (Periquant 3800R, Gutman Eurasburg, FRG); and refilling time of subcutaneous veins emptied by activation of the ankle joint pump using a photoplethysmograph (Cardiopluse AnalyzerR, Fritac Zurich). In the treatment group venous capacity decreased by an average of 16% from 4.9±0.3 (sd) ml/100ml tissue to 4.1±0.4 (p<0.005, U-test) while in the control group it remained practically unchanged at 4.8±0.4 vs. 5.0±0.3 Venous refilling time in the lower extremities also increased in the treatment group, half refilling rising from 7.8±1.0 to 11.3±0.9 sec (p<0.001) and total refilling time from 17.1±1.4 to 25.7±2.1 (p<0.001); these parameters remained virtually unchanged in the control group, with half refilling time dropping slightly from 7.7±1.1 to 7.1±1.3 and total refilling time from 18.3±1.7 to 16.3±1.9. Patient self-rating scores obtained using a standardized questionnaire administered at baseline and at the end of wk 24 improved in the treatment group only. The combined physical therapy was thus shown to be of long-term therapeutic value. They improved venous function and reduced patients' symptoms. Our findings indicate that for the further development of this combined treatment regimen it would be useful to identify the individual factors contributing to its efficacy and evaluate them separately.