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Bulletin of RSMU

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Quantitative assessment of cerebral hemodynamics is important for patients with chronic cerebral ischemia (CCI), as it helps to reveal the pathogenesis of the disease and set the course for effective prevention and treatment. The study was aimed to assess the correlation of the left carotid artery (ICA) resistive index (RI) with cognitive functions and brain network organization based on fMRI data in patients with CCI (51 males and 105 females). The listed above indicators were studied in patients with the left ICA RI values below and above the average (0.54 ± 0.013). The lower, normal physiological ICA resistance levels corresponded to the more successful realization of verbal cognitive functions. In the first group, RI was within normal range (RI = 0.42 ± 0.007), and in the second group RI exceeded normal levels (RI = 0.61 ± 0.01). Variation of the right ICA RI did not correlate with the characteristics of verbal cognitive functions. FMRI data analysis was used to assess the differences in connectivity between various brain regions in the groups with low and high RI. The normal physiological and elevated RI values of the left ICA correlated with differences in the organization of brain networks: normal physiological RI values corresponded to a better organization of hemispheric connections in the basal ganglia and brainstem, and high RI values corresponded to a better organization of connections between the frontal regions and the cerebellum as well as occipital areas of the cerebral cortex. The left ICA RI can be considered as a biomarker of cognitive decline and brain networks reorganization in patients with CCI.
Parkinson’s disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative multisystem disorder characterized by pathologic α-synuclein aggregation affecting, among other things, vagal fibers. The aim of this study was to investigate the cross-sectional area (CSA) of the vagus nerve (VN) in patients with PD using ultrasound imaging. The study was conducted in 32 patients with PD (15 men and 17 women; mean age 58 ± 10 years) and 32 healthy controls comparable with the main group in terms of sex and age. All study participants underwent ultrasound examination of the VN using a high-resolution transducer. Left VN CSA was significantly smaller in patients with PD than in the control group (1.78 ± 0.52 mm2 vs 2.11 ± 0.41 mm2; р = 0.007). A similar result was obtained for right VN CSA at the trend level. ROC analysis demonstrated that the threshold CSA value of < 2.10 mm2 for the left VN has low diagnostic sensivity (59%) for VN atrophy in patients with PD. Right VN CSA was significantly larger than left VN CSA in both groups (p < 0.001). The analysis of the PD group did not reveal any associations between VN CSA and age, duration and stage of the disease, motor (UPDRS III) and non-motor (NMSQ) scores. Patients with akinetic-rigid form of PD had smaller left VN CSA than patients with the mixed form of the disease (р < 0.05). A moderate inverse correlation was established between left VN CSA and the area of substantia nigra hyperechogenicity on both sides (р < 0.04); for the right VN a similar correlation was established at the trend level. High-resolution ultrasound of patients with PD demonstrated atrophy of the VN and the association of VN CSA with the clinical form of the disease and the ultrasound features of the substantia nigra.

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Pathogenetic progression mechanisms in the SARS-CoV-2–essential hypertension (EAH) system are more complex than interaction at the level of angiotensinconverting enzyme 2 (ACE2). The study was aimed to assess the dynamic changes of the IL1 members (IL1β, IL1α, IL1ra, IL18, IL18BP, IL37) blood levels in patients with EAH 10, 30, and 180 days after having COVID-19 in order to define cytokine-mediated mechanisms of EAH progression during the period following infection. The study involved four groups of patients: with a history of EAH and COVID-19 (pneumonia/no pneumonia), with a history of COVID-19 (pneumonia/no pneumonia) and no EAH. Cytokine levels were determined by enzyme immunoassay. The study results demonstrate the prolonged proinflammatory immune response during the period following infection in patients with EAH (retaining higher levels of IL1β, IL1α, and IL18 on days 10, 30, and 180 after recovery (р < 0.001) compared to levels measured prior to SARS-CoV-2 infection). In the group with no EAH, the balance of assayed cytokines was restored on day 30 of follow-up. The two-fold increase of blood IL18 levels in patients, having a history of EAH and COVID-19 and showing no increase in the IL18ВР levels after 30 days of follow up compared to the values measured prior to infection, is associated with cardiovascular complications occurring during the first six months of follow-up. This makes it possible to hypothesize the importance of these immunoregulatory peptides for the pathogenesis of complications and enhances the relevance of further scientific research.
Dear researcher!
At the end of 2015, Bulletin of RSMU saw an important change in its typographic design and content. We formulated new editorial policies and established strict ethical standards for submitted manuscripts in accordance with the guidelines of reputable international bodies. As a result, about a quarter of the submitted works have been rejected, the primary reason being the author trying to submit a previously published article. Sometimes authors believe that by making slight changes to the introduction, excluding a few people from the study, performing a new statistical analysis, and thus obtaining totally new results they will turn their old manuscript into a novel work. That is why we would like to talk about scientific integrity, honesty, plagiarism, and self-plagiarism in our special project “Author’s work”.
Richard FEYNMAN Cargo cult science
American physicist Richard P. Feynman, a Nobel laureate, was always very scrupulous about the quality of a research study. During his commencement address at the California Institute of Technology in 1974, he talked about scientific integrity and honesty and warned young researchers “not to fool” themselves. A must-read for anyone who believes he/she is a true scientist.
Ivan PAVLOV On the Russian mind
In 1918, Russian physiologist Ivan Pavlov, a Nobel laureate, delivered two lectures: on the mind in general and the Russian mind in particular; on those mind qualities that determine the success of a research work and on how these qualities are present in the Russian mind. Pavlov's thoughts are an effective vaccine against poor intellectual work.