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      Psoriasis and Dilated Cardiomyopathy: Coincidence or Associated Diseases?


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          Psoriasis is a common immune-mediated disease which affects 1–3% of the population. The etiology of psoriasis is unknown. Idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy is probably the end result of a variety of toxic, metabolic or infectious agents. During a computerized search for cardiomyopathy among all patients hospitalized with psoriasis in the Hadassah University Hospital since 1980 we found an increased prevalence of cardiomyopathy, and specifically dilated cardiomyopathy. We present 4 patients who suffer from both conditions. In accordance with previous data, an association between preexisting psoriasis and dilated cardiomyopathy is suggested. We suggest that the genetic risk factors of dilated cardiomyopathy are shared by psoriasis, and more specifically psoriatic arthritis. Alternatively, the immune reaction that is triggered in dilated cardiomyopathy leading to the progression of the disease might be enhanced in patients with psoriasis or psoriatic arthritis. Chronic inflammation and persistent secretion of proinflammatory cytokines may be considered a potential pathway, triggering the initiation and progression of dilated cardiomyopathy in psoriatic patients. Further investigation of the genetic and immune risk factors involved in dilated cardiomyopathy and in psoriasis may lead to a better understanding of the pathogenesis and treatment of dilated cardiomyopathy.

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          Convergence of IL-1β and VDR Activation Pathways in Human TLR2/1-Induced Antimicrobial Responses

          Antimicrobial effector mechanisms are central to the function of the innate immune response in host defense against microbial pathogens. In humans, activation of Toll-like receptor 2/1 (TLR2/1) on monocytes induces a vitamin D dependent antimicrobial activity against intracellular mycobacteria. Here, we report that TLR activation of monocytes triggers induction of the defensin beta 4 gene (DEFB4), requiring convergence of the IL-1β and vitamin D receptor (VDR) pathways. TLR2/1 activation triggered IL-1β activity, involving the upregulation of both IL-1β and IL-1 receptor, and downregulation of the IL-1 receptor antagonist. TLR2/1L induction of IL-1β was required for upregulation of DEFB4, but not cathelicidin, whereas VDR activation was required for expression of both antimicrobial genes. The differential requirements for induction of DEFB4 and cathelicidin were reflected by differences in their respective promoter regions; the DEFB4 promoter had one vitamin D response element (VDRE) and two NF-κB sites, whereas the cathelicidin promoter had three VDREs and no NF-κB sites. Transfection of NF-κB into primary monocytes synergized with 1,25D3 in the induction of DEFB4 expression. Knockdown of either DEFB4 or cathelicidin in primary monocytes resulted in the loss of TLR2/1-mediated antimicrobial activity against intracellular mycobacteria. Therefore, these data identify a novel mechanism of host defense requiring the induction of IL-1β in synergy with vitamin D activation, for the TLR-induced antimicrobial pathway against an intracellular pathogen.
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            Genetic deficiency of chemokine receptor CCR5 is a strong risk factor for symptomatic West Nile virus infection: a meta-analysis of 4 cohorts in the US epidemic.

            West Nile virus (WNV) causes disease in approximately 20% of infected humans. We previously reported that homozygosity for CCR5Delta32, a nonfunctional variant of chemokine receptor CCR5, is markedly increased among symptomatic WNV-seropositive patients from Arizona and Colorado. To confirm this, we analyzed cohorts from California and Illinois. An increase in CCR5-deficient subjects was found in both (for California, odds ratio [OR], 4.2 [95% confidence interval {CI}, 1.5-11.9] [P= .004]; for Illinois, OR, 3.1 [95% CI, 0.9-11.2] [P= .06]). A meta-analysis of all 4 cohorts showed an OR of 4.2 (95% CI, 2.1-8.3 [P= .0001]). Thus, CCR5 deficiency is a strong and consistent risk factor for symptomatic WNV infection in the United States.
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              Is Open Access

              Reduction of Natural Killer but Not Effector CD8 T Lymphoyctes in Three Consecutive Cases of Severe/Lethal H1N1/09 Influenza A Virus Infection

              Background The cause of severe disease in some patients infected with pandemic influenza A virus is unclear. Methodology/Principal Findings We present the cellular immunology profile in the blood, and detailed clinical (and post-mortem) findings of three patients with rapidly progressive infection, including a pregnant patient who died. The striking finding is of reduction in natural killer (NK) cells but preservation of activated effector CD8 T lymphocytes; with viraemia in the patient who had no NK cells. Comparison with control groups suggests that the reduction of NK cells is unique to these severely ill patients. Conclusion/Significance Our report shows markedly reduced NK cells in the three patients that we sampled and raises the hypothesis that NK may have a more significant role than T lymphocytes in controlling viral burden when the host is confronted with a new influenza A virus subtype.

                Author and article information

                S. Karger AG
                September 2008
                25 April 2008
                : 111
                : 3
                : 202-206
                Department of Cardiology, Hebrew University-Hadassah Medical School, Jerusalem, Israel
                121605 Cardiology 2008;111:202–206
                © 2008 S. Karger AG, Basel

                Copyright: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be translated into other languages, reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, microcopying, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher. Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in government regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug. Disclaimer: The statements, opinions and data contained in this publication are solely those of the individual authors and contributors and not of the publishers and the editor(s). The appearance of advertisements or/and product references in the publication is not a warranty, endorsement, or approval of the products or services advertised or of their effectiveness, quality or safety. The publisher and the editor(s) disclaim responsibility for any injury to persons or property resulting from any ideas, methods, instructions or products referred to in the content or advertisements.

                : 16 January 2008
                : 17 January 2008
                Page count
                Tables: 1, References: 14, Pages: 5
                Novel Insights from Clinical Experience

                General medicine,Neurology,Cardiovascular Medicine,Internal medicine,Nephrology
                Cardiomyopathy,Psoriasis,Psoriatic arthritis,Dilated cardiomyopathy


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