Other affiliations: University of Lisbon
Bio: Catarina Martins is an academic researcher from University of Porto. The author has contributed to research in topics: Visual arts education & The arts. The author has an hindex of 7, co-authored 24 publications receiving 105 citations. Previous affiliations of Catarina Martins include University of Lisbon.
TL;DR: The use of nanoparticles as drug carriers has been explored and presents several advantages, such as controlled and targeted release of loaded or coupled drugs, and the improvement of the drug's bioavailability, in addition to others as discussed by the authors.
Abstract: Since the last decade, nanotechnology has evolved rapidly and has been applied in several areas, such as medicine, pharmaceutical, microelectronics, aerospace, food industries, among others. The use of nanoparticles as drug carriers has been explored and presents several advantages, such as controlled and targeted release of loaded or coupled drugs, and the improvement of the drug's bioavailability, in addition to others. However, they also have some limitations, related to their in vivo toxicity, which affects all organs including the healthy ones, and overall improvement in the disease treatment, which can be unnoticeable or minimal. Silver nanoparticles have been increasingly investigated due to their peculiar physical, chemical, and optical properties, which allows them to cover several applications, namely in the transport of drugs to a specific target in the body. Given the limitations of conventional cancer chemotherapy, which include low bioavailability and the consequent use of high doses that cause adverse effects, strategies that overcome these difficulties are extremely important. This review embraces an overview and presentation about silver nanoparticles used as anticancer drug carrier systems and focuses a discussion on the state of the art of silver nanoparticles exploited for transport of anticancer drugs and their influence on antitumor effects.
TL;DR: The results of the study showing fluctuations in inflammatory markers along the hearing loss process, reinforce the idea that inflammatory mechanisms are involved in hearing loss pathogenesis but also in tinnitus.
Abstract: Objective: Tinnitus is associated with various conditions such as presbycusis, infectious, autoimmune and many other diseases. Our study aims to identify an association between inflammatory markers...
TL;DR: Findings indicate that dog neutrophils are competent effector cells able to control the initial L. infantum infection, however, some parasites evade intracellular effector mechanisms and can be transferred to the definitive host cell, the macrophage, contributing to the development of canine leishmaniosis.
Abstract: Canine leishmaniosis caused by L. infantum is a severe zoonotic disease. Although macrophages are the definitive host cells, neutrophils are the first cells to encounter the parasite soon after its inoculation in the dermis by the phlebotomine vector. To study the interaction of dog neutrophils and L. infantum promastigotes, blood neutrophils were isolated from healthy donors and the infection was established in vitro. In the majority of the dogs, L. infantum was efficiently phagocytized by neutrophils, and oxidative (superoxide production) and non-oxidative (neutrophil elastase exocytosis) intracellular effector mechanisms were activated, but the release of neutrophil extracellular traps was minimized. Furthermore, promastigotes and culture supernatants induced neutrophil migration, but the prior contact with Leishmania inhibits chemotaxis, which might contribute to neutrophil retention at the inoculation site. Neutrophil-parasite interaction resulted in a decrease in parasite viability, although some intracellular promastigotes survive and maintain their proliferative capacity. These findings indicate that dog neutrophils are competent effector cells able to control the initial L. infantum infection. However, some parasites evade intracellular effector mechanisms and can be transferred to the definitive host cell, the macrophage, contributing to the development of canine leishmaniosis.
TL;DR: Carbon quantum dots (CQDs) have started to emerge as candidates for application in cell imaging, biosensing, and targeted drug delivery, amongst other research fields, due to their unique properties as mentioned in this paper.
Abstract: Carbon quantum dots (CQDs) have started to emerge as candidates for application in cell imaging, biosensing, and targeted drug delivery, amongst other research fields, due to their unique properties. Those applications are possible as the CQDs exhibit tunable fluorescence, biocompatibility, and a versatile surface. This review aims to summarize the recent development in the field of CQDs research, namely the latest synthesis progress concerning materials/methods, surface modifications, characterization methods, and purification techniques. Furthermore, this work will systematically explore the several applications CQDs have been subjected to, such as bioimaging, fluorescence sensing, and cancer/gene therapy. Finally, we will briefly discuss in the concluding section the present and future challenges, as well as future perspectives and views regarding the emerging paradigm that is the CQDs research field.
TL;DR: The molecules that regulate the process of angiogenesis, defined as the formation of new capillary vessels from existent microvessels, which plays a major role in the evolvement of a vascular supply in tissue during development or remodeling and disease is summarized.
Abstract: Endothelial cells lining the lumen of vessels are maintained in the quiescent state and play important physiological roles. Yet, they can be de-differentiated and become one of the most rapidly proliferating of all cell types when stimulated. Angiogenesis or neovascularization is defined as the formation of new capillary vessels from existent microvessels, which plays a major role in the evolvement of a vascular supply in tissue during development or remodeling and disease. Angiogenesis is believed to be regulated by the balance between inducers and inhibitors. In this review article, I will summarize the molecules that regulate the process of angiogenesis.
TL;DR: The present comprehensive review of primary Sjögren’s syndrome addresses the clinical manifestations and complications of the disease, the diagnostic workup, the pathogenic mechanisms and the therapeutic approaches.
Abstract: Primary Sjogren’s syndrome (pSS) is a chronic systemic autoimmune rheumatic disease characterized by lymphoplasmacytic infiltration of the salivary and lacrimal glands, whereby sicca syndrome and/or systemic manifestations are the clinical hallmarks, associated with a particular autoantibody profile. pSS is the most frequent connective tissue disease after rheumatoid arthritis, affecting 0.3–3% of the population. Women are more prone to develop pSS than men, with a sex ratio of 9:1. Considered in the past as innocent collateral passive victims of autoimmunity, the epithelial cells of the salivary glands are now known to play an active role in the pathogenesis of the disease. The aetiology of the “autoimmune epithelitis” still remains unknown, but certainly involves genetic, environmental and hormonal factors. Later during the disease evolution, the subsequent chronic activation of B cells can lead to the development of systemic manifestations or non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. The aim of the present comprehensive review is to provide the current state of knowledge on pSS. The review addresses the clinical manifestations and complications of the disease, the diagnostic workup, the pathogenic mechanisms and the therapeutic approaches.
TL;DR: A system composed by several modules whose main goal is to work as a formative assessment tool for students and to help teachers creating and assessing exams as well monitoring students' progress is described.
Abstract: Assessment plays a central role in any educational process as a way of evaluating the students' knowledge on the concepts associated with learning objectives. The assessment of free-text answers is a process that, besides being very costly in terms of time spent by teachers, may lead to inequities due to the difficulty in applying the same evaluation criteria to all answers. This paper describes a system composed by several modules whose main goal is to work as a formative assessment tool for students and to help teachers creating and assessing exams as well monitoring students' progress. The system automatically creates training exams for students to practice based on questions from previous exams and assists teachers in the creation of evaluation exams with various kinds of information about students' performance. The system automatically assesses training exams to give automatic feedback to students. The correction of free-text answers is based on the syntactic and semantic similarity between the student answers and various reference answers, thus going beyond the simple lexical matching. For this, several pre-processing tasks are performed in order to reduce each answer to its more manageable canonical form. Besides the syntactic and semantic similarity between answers, the way the teacher evaluates the answers is also acquired. To accomplish that, the assessment is done using sub scores defined by the teacher concerning parts of the answer or its subgoals. The system has been trained and tested on exams manually graded by History teachers. There is a good correlation between the evaluation of the instructors and the evaluation performed by our system.
TL;DR: In conclusion, testicular T production does not seem to be impaired in men with KS, and ITT concentrations are increased, but not because of increased SHBG activity.
Abstract: Klinefelter syndrome (KS, 47,XXY) is associated with low serum testosterone (T), long thought to arise from disturbed steroidogenesis in Leydig cells. However, intratesticular testosterone (ITT) concentrations were recently found to be normal in a KS mouse model(41,XXY*). So far, nothing was known about ITT concentrations in human patients with KS. Therefore, ITT, sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) and histological parameters were measured in human testicular biopsies of 11 KS patients, 30 azoospermic patients with Sertoli-cell-only syndrome and nine men with normal spermatogenesis as controls. ITT concentrations showed an overall pronounced excess over intratesticular SHBG in molar terms and were significantly increased in men with KS despite of reduced serum T levels. While the ratio of ITT/serum T was markedly increased in KS, the ITT/LH-ratio was comparable between all groups. After finding significantly increased ITT levels in men with KS, a finding even more striking than in the 41,XXY* KS mouse model, we set out to find a possible 'vascular' explanation for the lack of T release into the testicular blood stream. In testis biopsies from patients,reliable analysis of the vessels is, however, not possible because of the bias resulting from the dissection technique requiring avoidance of larger blood vessels to prevent bleeding. Consequently, the blood vessel constitution was evaluated in whole testis sections from adult male 41,XXY* and 40,XY*mice (n=5, each). Indeed, the blood vessel/testes surface ratio correcting for the smaller testes of XXY*mice was significantly lower in these mice compared with XY*controls. In conclusion, testicular T production does not seem to be impaired in men with KS. On the contrary, ITT concentrations are increased, but not because of increased SHBG activity. The data from the mouse model let us speculate that a reduced vascular bed might be involved in lower release of T into the blood stream.