Two cases of Addison's disease associated with myasthenia gravis are reported. This association has been described only rarely in the literature. In the first case, there were marked immunological abnormalities. It is most likely that the origin of the adrenocortical insufficiency in the second case is tuberculous. The pathogenetic mechanism of these associations is briefly discussed.
About 12% of children of myasthenic mothers exhibit a transitory myasthenic syndrome. Usually, these symptoms have disappeared after a few weeks. Treatment with anticholinesterase drugs is successful. The purpose of this paper is to present an infant born to a myasthenic mother, with distal arthrogryposis, severe hypotonia and respiratory distress, unresponsive to administration of pyridostigmine bromide. Eleven other cases of neonatal myasthenia with arthrogryposis are known. Five of them were stillborn or died within the first day of life. The surviving children had profound weakness and needed ventilatory assistance for a long period. The severity of these few cases contrasts with the numerous reports of benign and transitory signs of neonatal myasthenia. Passively transferred maternal acetylcholine receptor antibodies may produce illness in the newborn.
The present report describes clinical variability in an affected dizygotic twin pair. Twin 1 showed classical features of the congenital myasthenic syndromes (CMS), that is, ptosis, dysphonia, asthenia and hypotonia. In twin 2, these clinical signs were less pronounced, but subtle resulting in severe lumbar hyperlordosis. Molecular analysis, performed for both twins, revealed the presence of three polymorphisms in the heterozygous form in RAPSN gene. The present report highlights the clinical variability of the CMS.
A rapid and simple method was developed for the separation and quantification of the anti nerve agent drug pyridostignmine bromide (PB; 3-dimethylaminocarbonyloxy-N-methyl pyridinium bromide) its metabolite N-methyl-3-hydroxypyridinium bromide, the insect repellent DEET (N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide), its metabolites m-toluamide and m-toluic acid, the insecticide permethrin (3-(2,2-dichloro-ethenyl)-2,2-dimethylcyclopropanecarboxylic acid(3-phenoxyphenyl)methylester), and two of its metabolites m-phenoxybenzyl alcohol, and m-phenoxybenzoic acid in rat plasma and urine. The method is based on using C18 Sep-Pak cartridges for solid-phase extraction (SPE) and high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) with reversed-phase C18 column, and gradient UV detection ranging between 208 and 230 nm. The compounds were separated using gradient of 1 to 99% acetonitrile in water (pH 3.20) at a flow-rate ranging between 0.5 and 1.7 ml/min in a period of 17 min. The retention times ranged from 5.7 to 14.5 min. The limits of detection were ranged between 20 and 100 ng/ml, while limits of quantitation were 150-200 ng/ml. Average percentage recovery of five spiked plasma samples were 51.4+/-10.6, 71.1+/-11.0, 82.3+/-6.7, 60.4+/-11.8, 63.6+/-10.1, 69.3+/-8.5, 68.3+/-12.0, 82.6+/-8.1, and from urine 55.9+/-9.8, 60.3+/-7.4, 77.9+/-9.1, 61.7+/-13.5, 68.6+/-8.9, 62.0+/-9.5, 72.9+/-9.1, and 72.1+/-8.0, for pyridostigmine bromide, DEET, permethrin, N-methyl-3-hydroxypyridinium bromide, m-toluamide, m-toluic acid, m-phenoxybenzyl alcohol and m-phenoxybenzoic acid, respectively. The relationship between peak areas and concentration was linear over the range between 100 and 5000 ng/ml. This method was applied to analyze the above chemicals and metabolites following their administration in rats.
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Pemphigus vulgaris (PV) is an autoimmune blistering disease affecting primarily oral mucosa and skin. Among the drugs used for the therapy of pemphigus, both methylprednisolone (MP) and pyridostigmine bromide (PBr) can prevent acantholysis in vitro. However, their putative therapeutic properties in regenerating PV-like lesions and promoting the healing process still remain to be demonstrated. To address this issue, here we have developed a model for studying the process of epithelial cleft regeneration in PV by artificially wounding keratinocyte monolayers.
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Corticosteroids are a new and selective stimulus of GH secretion. They do not cause GH release in obese subjects. Their relative independence from cholinergic control suggest that they act by reducing somatostatin secretion.
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To study the effect of strengthening Pi and nourishing Shen therapy (SPNST) in treating patients with glucocorticoid resistant myasthenia gravis (GR-MG).
After ethical approval, 10 myasthenic patients undergoing videothoracoscopic-assisted thymectomy were enrolled in the study. Neuromuscular block was achieved with 0.3 mg/kg rocuronium and additional doses were given according to train-of-four (TOF) monitoring or movement of the diaphragm. Sugammadex 2 mg/kg was given after surgery. Recovery time (time to obtain a TOF value > 0.9) was recorded for all subjects.
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Organophosphonate (OP) nerve agents, such as soman, are potent irreversible inhibitors of central and peripheral acetylcholinesterases (AChEs). Pre-treatment of OP poisoning relies on the subchronic administration of a reversible AChE inhibitor. In the present limited study, the protective effects against soman toxicity of such compounds, i.e., the current pre-treatment pyridostigmine and huperzine, a proposed pre-treatment, are compared in primates. This is the first time primates are used to study the potential of pre-treatment with hyperzine. Indeed, previous studies with huperzine used nonprimate models which are not the most appropriate for pre-treatment in humans. Each medication is given via a subcutaneous mini-osmotic pump for 6 days at a delivery rate providing about 20% inhibition of red cell AChE activity. In this trial with only four primates, huperzine selectively inhibits red cell AChE activity whereas pyridostigmine also inhibits plasma butyrylcholinesterase (BuChE). This latter may act as endogenous scavenger of OP compounds helping to confer additional protection against OPs. During intoxication, the cumulative dose of soman needed to produce convulsions and epileptic activity is 1.55-fold higher in the animals pre-treated with huperzine compared to those pre-treated with pyridostigmine. Thus, replacing PYR by HUP for a subchronic pre-treatment of primates gives them better tolerance to the epileptic effects of soman.
Autonomic imbalance characterized by sympathetic predominance coinciding with diminished vagal activity is an independent risk factor in cardiovascular diseases. Several studies show that vagus nerve stimulation exerted beneficial effects on cardiac function and survival. In this study, we investigated the vagomimetic effect of pyridostigmine on left ventricular (LV) remodeling in rats after myocardial infarction. After myocardial infarction, surviving rats were treated with or without pyridostigmine (31 mg·kg⁻¹·d⁻¹) for 2 weeks, and hemodynamic parameters were measured. LV tissue was used to assess infarct size and interstitial fibrosis by Masson's trichrome and 0.1% picrosirius red staining. Protein expression of heart tissues was used to assess the efficacy of the treatment. Pyridostigmine markedly reduced myocardial infarct size and improved cardiac diastolic function. These improvements were accompanied with a significant decrease in matrix metalloproteinase-2 expression and collagen deposition. Additionally, pyridostigmine inhibited both transforming growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1) and TGF-β1-activated kinase expression in hearts postmyocardial infarction. Thus, pyridostigmine reduces collagen deposition, attenuates cardiac fibrosis, and improves LV diastolic function after myocardial infarction via TGF-β1/TGF-β1-activated kinase pathway inhibition.
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Many Persian Gulf War veterans took pyridostigmine bromide (PB) during the Persian Gulf War. Previous research suggests that PB intake and insecticide exposure may reduce muscular strength. During 1994 and 1995, we examined the relationships between self-reported PB intake, self-reported exposures, and handgrip strength among 527 Gulf War veterans (GWVs) and 969 nondeployed veterans of that era (NDVs). We found that 25.4% and 6.7% of the GWVs and NDVs, respectively, reported generalized musucle weakness (for 1 month or longer) since the Gulf War (July 1990). Many veterans also reported exposure to insecticide during the war. Dominant handgrip strength was measured three times with a hand-held dynamometer in subjects standing with the elbow bent at a right angle. Multiple linear regression revealed that handgrip strength was negatively associated with age (p = 0.001) and female gender (p < 0.001). Handgrip strength was also found to be positively associated with height (p < 0.001), but it was not associated with PB intake (p = 0.558). Exposure to insecticides had no major effect on handgrip strength. These data suggest no association between PB intake and postwar handgrip strength.
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We analysed the dispensed use of subsidised RRMS drugs by jurisdiction.
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The actions of pyridostigmine (Pyr), a quaternary carbamate compound, and physostigmine ( Phy ), a tertiary carbamate, both known for their reversible inhibition of acetylcholinesterase (AChE), were studied on the electrically excitable membrane and acetylcholine (ACh) receptor of the frog cutaneous pectoris, sartorius, and interosseal muscles, as well as the chronically denervated soleus muscle of the rat and myoballs from neonatal rats. Both Pyr and Phy first potentiated, then depressed and finally blocked the indirectly evoked muscle twitch. Pyr and Phy had negligible effects upon either membrane potential or muscle action potential. But at the synaptic junction, they decreased the peak amplitude of the endplate current (EPC) in a voltage- and concentration-dependent manner. Pyridostigmine produced a marked prolongation of the decay time constants of both the EPC and the miniature endplate current ( MEPC ), while maintaining a single exponential decay, and Phy decreased peak amplitude, while having little effect on its voltage dependence. Physostigmine also decreased the decay time constant, suggesting a channel block, presumably in open state. Single channel recordings using patch clamp techniques disclosed that Pyr interacts with the ACh receptor as a weak agonist capable of inducing desensitization, alone, and when combined with ACh. Physostigmine interacts directly with the ACh-ionic channel complex, blocking it in open conformation.
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Our results show that beta 2-adrenergic activation by salbutamol is able to inhibit not only the GH rise induced by GHRH, arginine and pyridostigmine, but even the potentiating effect of both arginine and pyridostigmine on the GH response to GHRH. They indicate that catecholamines, acetylcholine and arginine play a major role in GH secretion having opposite influences aimed to balance the function of the hypothalamus-GH-IGF-I axis in man.
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Dexamethasone-induced GH secretion in normal subjects (28.6 +/- 7.8 millimicron/l, P less than 0.05). Corticosteroids did not alter GH levels in obese subjects. Pretreatment with pyridostigmine increased dexamethasone-induced GH release in normal subjects (40.8 +/- 6.8 millimicron/l) but this did not achieve statistical significance. Dexamethasone plus pyridostigmine did not alter GH levels in obese subjects (8.0 +/- 1.6 mU/l). In some subjects, dexamethasone pretreatment potentiated GHRH-stimulated GH secretion, while in half the subjects the basal GH levels were not altered. In control subjects, hydrocortisone and deflazacort caused GH release similar to dexamethasone.
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Rats were trained to make conditioned food reflex excursions in two states: in normal conditions and on a background of treatment with pharmacological agents producing dissociative states. A number of cholinergic substances were completely interchangeable in dissociative learning; anticholinergic compounds efficiently neutralized the ability of cholinergic substances to produce dissociative states; muscarinic cholinoreceptors played the leading role in production of the dissociative state.
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Ten normal subjects and 22 obese subjects were studied. Normal controls were within 10% of their ideal body weight. Obese subjects had a body mass index of 37.1 +/- 1.1 (mean +/- SEM).
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Mycophenolate mofetil (MM), an immunosuppressant used after organ transplantation, is also used for treatment of autoimmune myasthenia gravis (MG). A patient with generalized MG was effectively managed with MM but developed CNS lymphoma after 3 years of treatment. Primary CNS lymphoma regressed on withdrawal of MM. Despite minimal short-term side effects and apparent efficacy, chronic treatment of MG with MM may be associated with increased risk of lymphoproliferative disorders.
Acute traumatic stress may lead to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), which is characterized by delayed neuropsychiatric symptoms including depression, irritability, and impaired cognitive performance. Curiously, inhibitors of the acetylcholine-hydrolysing enzyme acetylcholinesterase may induce psychopathologies that are reminiscent of PTSD. It is unknown how a single stressful event mediates long-term neuronal plasticity. Moreover, no mechanism has been proposed to explain the convergent neuropsychological outcomes of stress and of acetylcholinesterase inhibition. However, acute stress elicits a transient increase in the amounts released of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine and a phase of enhanced neuronal excitability. Inhibitors of acetylcholinesterase also promote enhanced electrical brain activity, presumably by increasing the survival of acetylcholine at the synapse. Here we report that there is similar bidirectional modulation of genes that regulate acetylcholine availability after stress and blockade of acetylcholinesterase. These calcium-dependent changes in gene expression coincide with phases of rapid enhancement and delayed depression of neuronal excitability. Both of these phases are mediated by muscarinic acetylcholine receptors. Our results suggest a model in which robust cholinergic stimulation triggers rapid induction of the gene encoding the transcription factor c-Fos. This protein then mediates selective regulatory effects on the long-lasting activities of genes involved in acetylcholine metabolism.
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Vagal stimulation alone achieved bradycardia without consistent and reproducible cardiac arrest. After drug administration 6 animals displayed significant potentiation of vagal-induced asystole in the 60-second stimulation protocol (1.6+/-0.9 seconds non-drug-treated versus 52.0+/-5.6 seconds drug-treated; p < 0.05). In the sequential 15-second impulse protocol after drug treatment, 6 animals achieved consistent, escape-free asystole during five to six sequential 15-second stimulations versus a brief pause and bradycardia produced without drug treatment.
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Lambert-Eaton myasthenic syndrome (LEMS) is a rare autoimmune disorder of neuromuscular transmission (NMJ) that shares many clinical features with myasthenia gravis (MG). We report a 73 year-old lady who presented 10 years previously with stiffness of both calves, dry mouth, fatigue, proximal weakness and areflexia in lower limbs. Neurophysiological studies were consistent with LEMS. Her work up for an underlying neoplasm was negative. She recently developed unilateral ptosis and diplopia which dramatically improved with pyridostigmine suggesting concomitant MG.
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The plasma concentrations of pyridostigmine were measured in eight patients during the antagonism of non-depolarizing neuromuscular blockade. After the injection i.v. of pyridostigmine bromide 14.6 mg/70 kg, the concentration of the drug rapidly decreased between 2 and 7 min, and then declined more slowly. After 2 h, significant amounts of pyridostigmine were still present in the plasma of all subjects. In the eight patients studied, the initial half-life was 1.0 +/- 0.3 min and the terminal half-life was 46.4 +/- 6.5 min (mean +/- SEM). Total body clearance of pyridostigmine was 8.7 +/- 1.5 ml min-1 kg-1, and the total apparent volume of distribution was 536 +/- 80 ml kg-1. Possible explanations for the differences between these results and previous studies are considered.
Gulf War syndrome (GWS) is a multi-symptom condition comprising a variety of signs and symptoms described in the literature, which not been fully resolved. The various symptoms of the condition include muscle fatigue and tiredness, malaise, myalgia, impaired cognition, ataxia, diarrhoea, bladder dysfunction, sweating disturbances, headaches, fever, arthralgia, skin rashes, and gastrointestinal and sleep disturbances. In addition, excessive chemical sensitivity and odour intolerance is reported. The aetiology of the condition is unclear, but many reviews and epidemiological analyses suggest association with pyridostigmine bromide (PB), certain vaccination regimes, a variety of possible chemical exposures, including smoke from oil-well fires or depleted uranium from shells, as well as physical and psychological stress. Recently, Shoenfeld et al. suggested that four conditions--siliconosis, macrophagic myofaciitis (MMF), GWS and post-vaccination phenomena--that share clinical and pathogenic resemblances, may be incorporated into common syndrome called 'Autoimmune (Autoinflammatory) Syndrome induced by Adjuvants' (ASIA). Symptoms and signs of the four conditions described by Shoenfeld et al. show that at least eight out of ten main symptoms are in correlation in all four conditions. Namely, myalgia, arthralgias, chronic fatigue, neurological cognitive impairment, gastrointestinal symptoms, respiratory symptoms, skin manifestations and appearance of autoantibodies. Regardless of the aetiology of GWS, be it exposure to environmental factors or chemical drugs, vaccinations or the adjuvants in them, GWS fits well with the definition of ASIA and is included as part of 'Shoenfeld's syndrome'.