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Articles by V Bianchi
Total Records ( 3 ) for V Bianchi
  V Bianchi , A Ivaldi , A Raspagni , C Arfini and M. Vidali

Aims: Carbohydrate-deficient transferrin (CDT) has become widely used in traffic medicine to detect chronic alcohol abuse among subjects applying for driving-license renewal or regranting. By defining cut-off values in a large population of abstainers and moderate drinkers, we report on CDT, GGT–CDT (a combination of gamma-glutamylaminotransferase (GGT) and CDT) and the association between blood alcohol concentration (BAC) and CDT among Italian drivers. Methods: CDT was evaluated by a high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC)-based commercial kit in 652 abstainers or moderate drinkers, 603 drivers applying for driving-license regranting after a rehabilitation programme and 105 drivers involved in car accidents with blood alcohol concentration higher than the legal limit used in Italy (BAC >0.5g/l). GGT–CDT was calculated according to Sillanaukee and Olsson and Niemelä. BAC has been assessed by gas chromatography–mass spectrometry. Results: A common CDT cut-off (1.8%) and gender-specific GGT–CDT cut-off (4.15% for males, 3.56% for females) were calculated as 99.9th percentiles of the control population. Also, 3% and 27% of subjects were classified as CDT positive respectively among drivers applying for license regranting and drivers involved in car accidents. A significant association between BAC and both CDT values and CDT positivity was found, with a frequency up to 49% of CDT samples, suggesting chronic alcohol abuse, among drivers with BAC >2.5g/l. Concordance between CDT and GGT–CDT was only moderate (kappa = 0.44), with CDT performing better than GGT–CDT. Conclusions: A relevant proportion of drivers with high BAC are chronic abusers. GGT–CDT, previously validated with CDT immunoassays, should not be applied to traffic medicine in its current form and its performances re-evaluated with CDT measured by HPLC.

  E Fragouli , V Bianchi , P Patrizio , A Obradors , Z Huang , A Borini , J. D. A Delhanty and D. Wells

The ability to identify oocytes with the greatest potential for producing a viable embryo would be of great benefit to assisted reproductive treatments. One of the most important defects affecting oocytes is aneuploidy. Aneuploidy is also closely related with advancing maternal age, a phenomenon not well understood. This study combined a comprehensive cytogenetic investigation of 21 oocytes with a detailed assessment of their transcriptome. The first polar body was removed from all oocytes and aneuploidy assessed using comparative genomic hybridization. Preliminary mRNA transcript data were produced with the use of microarrays for seven of the corresponding oocytes (three normal and four aneuploid). The results obtained for normal and aneuploid oocytes were compared and 327 genes were found to display statistically (P < 0.05) significant differences in transcript levels. Ninety-six of these genes were further assessed in seven aneuploid and seven normal oocytes using real-time PCR. The results indicated that aneuploidy is associated with altered transcript levels affecting a subset of genes. A link between mRNA transcript numbers and age was also observed. The possibility that different transcript levels in the oocyte have an impact on cellular pathways remains to be proven. However, it may be significant that some of the highlighted genes produce proteins involved in spindle assembly and chromosome alignment. Additionally, several genes with altered amounts of transcript produce cell surface or excretory molecules, and could potentially serve as targets for non-invasive oocyte aneuploidy assessment.

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