The human gastrointestinal tract (GIT) is inhabited by a wide cluster of microorganisms that play protective, structural, and metabolic functions for the intestinal mucosa. Gut microbiota is involved in the barrier functions and in the maintenance of its homeostasis. It provides nutrients, participates in the signaling network, regulates the epithelial development, and affects the immune system. Considering the microbiota ability to respond to homeostatic and physiological changes, some researchers proposed that it can be seen as an endocrine organ. Evidence suggests that different factors can determine changes in the gut microbiota. These changes can be both quantitative and qualitative resulting in variations of the composition and metabolic activity of the gut microbiota which, in turn, can affect health and different disease processes. Recent studies suggest that exercise can enhance the number of beneficial microbial species, enrich the microflora diversity, and improve the development of commensal bacteria. All these effects are beneficial for the host, improving its health status. In this paper, we intend to shed some light over the recent knowledge of the role played by exercise as an environmental factor in determining changes in microbial composition and how these effects could provide benefits to health and disease prevention.
Background: On the 31 December 2019, the World Health Organization (WHO) was informed of a cluster of cases of pneumonia of unknown origin detected in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China. The infection spread first in China and then in the rest of the world, and on the 11th of March, the WHO declared that COVID-19 was a pandemic. Taking into consideration the mortality rate of COVID-19, about 5-7%, and the percentage of positive patients admitted to intensive care units being 9-11%, it should be mandatory to consider and take all necessary measures to contain the COVID-19 infection. Moreover, given the recent evidence in different hospitals suggesting IL-6 and TNF-α inhibitor drugs as a possible therapy for COVID-19, we aimed to highlight that a dietary intervention could be useful to prevent the infection and/or to ameliorate the outcomes during therapy. Considering that the COVID-19 infection can generate a mild or highly acute respiratory syndrome with a consequent release of pro-inflammatory cytokines, including IL-6 and TNF-α, a dietary regimen modification in order to improve the levels of adiponectin could be very useful both to prevent the infection and to take care of patients, improving their outcomes.
Sudden cardiac death (SCD) represents about 25% of deaths in clinical cardiology. The identification of risk factors for SCD is the philosopher's stone of cardiology and the identification of non-invasive markers of risk of SCD remains one of the most important goals for the scientific community.The aim of this review is to analyze the state of the art around the heart rate variability (HRV) as a predictor factor for SCD.HRV is probably the most analyzed index in cardiovascular risk stratification technical literature, therefore an important number of models and methods have been developed.Nowadays, low HRV has been shown to be independently predictive of increased mortality in post- myocardial infarction patients, heart failure patients, in contrast with the data of the general population.Contrariwise, the relationship between HRV and SCD has received scarce attention in low-risk cohorts. Furthermore, in general population the attributable risk is modest and the cost/benefit ratio is not always convenient.The HRV evaluation could become an important tool for health status in risks population, even though the use of HRV alone for risk stratification of SCD is limited and further studies are needed.
The orexin-A/hypocretin-1 and orexin-B/hypocretin-2 are neuropeptides synthesized by a cluster of neurons in the lateral hypothalamus and perifornical area. Orexin neurons receive a variety of signals related to environmental, physiological and emotional stimuli, and project broadly to the entire CNS. Orexin neurons are “multi-tasking” neurons regulating a set of vital body functions, including sleep/wake states, feeding behavior, energy homeostasis, reward systems, cognition and mood. Furthermore, a dysfunction of orexinergic system may underlie different pathological conditions. A selective loss orexin neurons was found in narcolepsia, supporting the crucial role of orexins in maintaining wakefulness. In animal models, orexin deficiency lead to obesity even if the consume of calories is lower than wildtype counterpart. Reduced physical activity appears the main cause of weight gain in these models resulting in energy imbalance. Orexin signaling promotes obesity resistance via enhanced spontaneous physical activity and energy expenditure regulation and the deficiency/dysfunction in orexins system lead to obesity in animal models despite of lower calories intake than wildtype associated with reduced physical activity. Interestingly, orexinergic neurons show connections to regions involved in cognition and mood regulation, including hippocampus. Orexins enhance hippocampal neurogenesis and improve spatial learning and memory abilities, and mood. Conversely, orexin deficiency results in learning and memory deficits, and depression.
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) refers to complex neurobehavioral and neurodevelopmental conditions characterized by impaired social interaction and communication, restricted and repetitive patterns of behavior or interests, and altered sensory processing. Environmental, immunological, genetic, and epigenetic factors are implicated in the pathophysiology of autism and provoke the occurrence of neuroanatomical and neurochemical events relatively early in the development of the central nervous system. Many neurochemical pathways are involved in determining ASD; however, how these complex networks interact and cause the onset of the core symptoms of autism remains unclear. Further studies on neurochemical alterations in autism are necessary to clarify the early neurodevelopmental variations behind the enormous heterogeneity of autism spectrum disorder, and therefore lead to new approaches for the treatment and prevention of autism. In this review, we aim to delineate the state-of-the-art main research findings about the neurochemical alterations in autism etiology, and focuses on gamma aminobutyric acid (GABA) and glutamate, serotonin, dopamine, N-acetyl aspartate, oxytocin and arginine-vasopressin, melatonin, vitamin D, orexin, endogenous opioids, and acetylcholine. We also aim to suggest a possible related therapeutic approach that could improve the quality of ASD interventions. Over one hundred references were collected through electronic database searching in Medline and EMBASE (Ovid), Scopus (Elsevier), ERIC (Proquest), PubMed, and the Web of Science (ISI).
Brain mitochondrial dysfunction is involved in the development of neurological and neurodegenerative diseases. Mitochondria specifically located at synapses play a key role in providing energy to support synaptic functions and plasticity, thus their defects may lead to synaptic failure, which is a common hallmark of neurodegenerative diseases. High-Fat Diet (HFD) consumption increases brain oxidative stress and impairs brain mitochondrial functions, although the underlying mechanisms are not completely understood. The aim of our study is to analyze neuroinflammation and mitochondrial dysfunctions in brain cortex and synaptosomal fraction isolated from a mouse model of diet-induced obesity. Male C57Bl/6 mice were divided into two groups fed a standard diet or HFD for 18 weeks. At the end of the treatment, inflammation (detected by ELISA), antioxidant state (measured by enzymatic activity), mitochondrial functions and efficiency (detected by oxidative capacity and Seahorse analysis), and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) pathway (analyzed by western blot) were determined in brain cortex and synaptosomal fraction. In HFD animals, we observed an increase in inflammatory parameters and oxidative stress and a decrease in mitochondrial oxidative capacity both in the brain cortex and synaptosomal fraction. These alterations parallel with modulation of BDNF, a brain key signaling molecule that is linking synaptic plasticity and energy metabolism. Neuroinflammation HFD-dependent negatively affects BDNF pathway and mitochondrial activity in the brain cortex. The effect is even more pronounced in the synaptic region, where the impaired energy supply may have a negative impact on neuronal plasticity.
scite is a Brooklyn-based startup that helps researchers better discover and understand research articles through Smart Citations–citations that display the context of the citation and describe whether the article provides supporting or contrasting evidence. scite is used by students researchers from around the world and is funded in part by the National Science Foundation and the National Institute on Drug Abuse of the National Institutes of Health.
334 Leonard St
Brooklyn, NY 11211
Copyright © 2023 scite Inc. All rights reserved.
Made with 💙 for researchers