Human Movement and Rehab

Interdisciplinary Research Laboratory

Agenzia Formativa Adulti n154 det. 1622 15.4.2015 Provincia Pisa


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SONO RIPORTATI I CAMPI DI INTERESSE ED I PRINCIPALI TEMI DI RICERCA POSTI IN ESSERE DALLA NOSTRA ASSOCIAZIONE SIA COME PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR CHE IN COLLABORAZIONE CON PARTNER ISTITUZIONALI:


 

Implementazione della analisi impedenziometrica segmentale per valutare il volume muscolare degli arti e del tronco e la loro correlazione con forza e performance del cammino in soggetti sani anziani

 

 

SCOPO DEL PROGETTO

 

Implementation of segmental Bioelectrical impedance analysis (sBIA) to evaluate the muscle volume of the limbs and trunk and their correlation with strength and gait performance in healthy elderly subjects

 

Bioelectrical impedance analysis (BIA) has gained recognition as an affordable, noninvasive, easy-to-operate, portable, and fast alternative for assessing body composition.

Traditionally, the impedance from wrist to ankle on one side of the body has been used to predict body composition (whole-body method); however, this method is most influenced by the composition of thin segments in the body such as the forearm and lower leg. Therefore, researchers have proposed dividing the human body into different segments or regions to accurately assess body composition.

Segmental BIA (SBIA) can estimate not only whole-body composition, but also segmental (upper arm, forearm, thigh, and lower-leg and trunk) muscle volumes (MVs). Previous studies have validated the accuracy of segmental MV estimated by SBIA against magnetic resonance imaging, computed tomography, and dual energy X-ray absorptiometry.

The present study was designed to evaluate and quantify inter healty age differences in muscle distribution,  assessing abnormal muscle distribution and MV distributions, if the SBIA data is  comparable in force time test (arm and leg) and predicting the walking performance

 

 

STUDIO DEGLI EFFETTI DELLA TOSSINA BOTULINICA IN DISORDINI MOTORI, DISTONIA,SPASTICITA'

 

SCOPO DEL PROGETTO

 

 

Study of the selectivity of botulinum toxins (BoNT-A and BoNT-C) for muscle fiber type units and their kinetics diffusion by exo-endocytosis: electro and impedence myography evaluation, biochemical pathway analysis and possible clinical implication in Spasticity, Dystonia, and Related Motor Disorders

 

Design implementation and clinical validation of 2D high-density electrode arrays (2DHDEMGs),with a bi-dimensional grid of 128 electrodes (8x16 with 10 mm interelectrode distance) positioned on the muscle suitable for recording EMGsurface signals (array processing) from different types of muscles and analysis of innervation zone (IZ).

The knowledge of innervation zone position (IZ) of muscles is crucial to injection the product (BoNTs) in specific sites of muscle to have more efficacy and less side effects .


Analyze the effect of blockade of nerve activity, induced by Botulinum Neurotoxin type A (BoNT/A), that promotes the expression of the slow isoform of myosin heavy chain (MyHC) in contrast with other neuromuscular inactivity models; and correlate the MyHC isoform switch with the muscle fiber denervation by BoNTs to better understand this phenomenon and to investigate if botulinum neurotoxins block preferentially some motor units rather than others.


Study of diffusion of different Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT-A and BoNT-C) formulations injected in the mouse model using an highly sensitive test based on Neural Cell Adhesion Molecule (N-CAM) expression in muscle.

 

STUDIO DEGLI EFFETTI DI ESERCIZIO RIABILITATIVO ASSISTITO AD ALTA INTENSITA' IN PAZIENTI PARKINSON

 

SCOPO DEL PROGETTO

 

 

Study of different types of exercises (randomized controlled trials)  of FORCED EXERCISE (mechanically assisted) in order to minimize the negative effects of the PD on motor and functional performance

Forced Exercise (FE), is a  relatively new approach to exercise in human patients with PD. FE, is defined operationally as a mode of aerobic exercise in which exercise rate is augmented mechanically to assist the participant in achieving and maintaining an exercise rate that is greater than their preferred voluntary rate of exercise. It is important to note that during FE, the participant is contributing actively to the exercise; they are not being moved through the motion passively.

The effects of FE on motor and behavioral function using the 6-OHDA or 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) rodent model of PD has been studied extensively. [Fisher BE, Petzinger GM, Nixon K, et al. Exercise-induced behavioral recovery and neuroplasticity in the 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine-lesioned mouse basal ganglia. J. Neurosci. Res. 2004; 77(3):37890,; Zigmond MJ. Triggering endogenous neuroprotective mechanisms in Parkinson's disease: studies with a cellular model. J. Neural Transm. Suppl. 2006; (70):43942;Zigmond MJ, Cameron JL, Leak RK, et al. Triggering endogenous neuroprotective processes through exercise in models of dopamine deficiency. Parkinsonism Relat. Disord. 2009; 15(Suppl 3):S425.] A typical FE paradigm is motorized treadmill running that requires the animal to maintain a running velocity that is greater than its preferred running velocity.

 

 

STUDIO DEGLI EFFETTI DI UNA SUPPLEMENTAZIONE DI AMINOACIDI ARRICCHITI CON LEUCINA IN PAZIENTI CON SCLEROSI LATERALE AMIOTROFICA

 

 

SCOPO DEL PROGETTO

 

Effect of branched-chain amino acid (BCAA) supplementation enriched of leucine (LEU)in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis patients

 

A prospective randomized double-blind study was performed with 12 male PALS,        ( ranging between 44 and 63 y.o.) divided into two groups: the treatment group (T) received BCAA supplementation (80 mg/kg bodyweight/day with ratio leucine/isoleucine/valine of 6/1/1), whereas the control group (C) received placebo (similar enriched flavours) .

ALS patients meeting El Escorial criteria for defined disease, either with bulbar or appendicular onset, regularly assisted in the Clinic, were included in the study. Patients with nasogastric tube or gastrostomy, on assisted mechanical ventilation and without intervening neurological illnesses. Body weight (kg) and height (m) were assessed ,Body mass index (BMI - kg/m2) and midarm circumference (MAC - cm), were determined;

The tricipital (TSF), skinfolds were measured using the scientific Lange branded (0.1mm-accuracy adipometer) midarm muscle circumference (MAMC), arm muscle area (AMA) and arm fat area (AFA) were obtained from MAC and TSF according to Heymsfield et al. The percentage of weight loss (%WL) was determined based upon the usual and the actually measured weight of the patient. BIA was performed by measuring the bioimpedances at 50 kHz and FFM was calculated by using TSF and Desport equation.

We determined the serum levels of albumin, pre-albumin, creatine-kinase (CK), creatine, urea, glucose, aspartate transferase (AST), alanine transferase (ALT), total lymphocyte count, platelets, sodium and potassium for each patient. All measurements were taken before (baseline), every 4 months (mid-points) and at the end of the trial (end point) .

 

 

STUDIO DELLA ANALISI BIOIMPEDENZIOMETRICA SEGMENTALE E CORRELAZIONE CON SPESA ENERGETICA A RIPOSO IN PAZIENTI CON SCLEROSI LATERALE AMIOTROFICA

 

 

SCOPO DEL PROGETTO

 

Correlation among Forced Vital Capacity (FVC), Resting Energy Expenditure (REE) and segmental trunk Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (stBIA) in ALS patients for predicting clinical disease progression: a preliminary study

In als  patients (mean age SD: 52.1 11.5 yrs; 7 M; 5 F) with definite ALS, neurologic deficit was quantified by manual muscular testing of all extremities and the neck as defined by the Medical Research Council.

All patients were stable in pharmacological medication (50 mg riluzole twice a day); no patient received any steroid drug treatment. FVC was measured with a pneumotachograph system (Medical Graphics, St Paul): findings were expressed in relation to a theoretical calculated index value.

Indirect calorimetry was performed with a VO2000 (Medical Graphics, St Paul) that was calibrated each morning before the measurements were made. Measurements were accepted if the results were at a stable plateau for ≥ 20 min.

The measured REE (mREE) was compared with REE obtained from a control population volunteers and with REE calculated (cREE) by using the Harris-Benedict equations. In stBIA, (50 kHz) the 4 source electrodes and the combination of 8 detecting electrodes used in this study allowed to separate the trunk into 5 parts and determine the Z of each part. All PALS were tested each 6 months: in such a preliminary work a 24-month period was analyzed.

 

 

 

UTILIZZO DELLA MIOGRAFIA ULTRASONOGRAFICA NELLA SCLEROSI LATERALE AMIOTROFICA

 

 

SCOPO DEL PROGETTO

 

QUANTITATIVE MUSCLE ULTRASONOGRAPHY IN AMYOTROPHIC LATERAL SCLEROSIS


 

In this study, we examined whether quantitative muscle ultrasonography can detect structural muscle changes in early-stage amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

Bilateral transverse scans were made of five muscles or muscle groups (sternocleidomastoid, biceps brachii/brachialis, forearm flexor group, quadriceps femoris and anterior tibialis muscles) in  patients with ALS.

 Quantitative analysis revealed a significant increase in echo intensity in all muscles and a decrease in muscle thickness of the biceps brachii, forearm flexors and quadriceps femoris on both sides.

Fasciculations were easy to detect in multiple muscles of all screened patients except one.

Quantification of muscle thickness and echo intensity provides a sensitive and specific objective method to discriminate between neuromuscular and non-neuromuscular disease.

We conclude that quantitative ultrasonography can be used to detect muscle changes caused by ALS in an early phase of the disease


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