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Mucoadhesive drug delivery systems
Rahamatullah Shaikh, Thakur Raghu Raj Singh, Martin James Garland, A David Woolfson, Ryan F Donnelly
January-March 2011, 3(1):89-100
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.76478  PMID:21430958
Mucoadhesion is commonly defined as the adhesion between two materials, at least one of which is a mucosal surface. Over the past few decades, mucosal drug delivery has received a great deal of attention. Mucoadhesive dosage forms may be designed to enable prolonged retention at the site of application, providing a controlled rate of drug release for improved therapeutic outcome. Application of dosage forms to mucosal surfaces may be of benefit to drug molecules not amenable to the oral route, such as those that undergo acid degradation or extensive first-pass metabolism. The mucoadhesive ability of a dosage form is dependent upon a variety of factors, including the nature of the mucosal tissue and the physicochemical properties of the polymeric formulation. This review article aims to provide an overview of the various aspects of mucoadhesion, mucoadhesive materials, factors affecting mucoadhesion, evaluating methods, and finally various mucoadhesive drug delivery systems (buccal, nasal, ocular, gastro, vaginal, and rectal).
  23,369 971 74
Introduction to metallic nanoparticles
Vicky V Mody, Rodney Siwale, Ajay Singh, Hardik R Mody
October-December 2010, 2(4):282-289
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.72127  PMID:21180459
Metallic nanoparticles have fascinated scientist for over a century and are now heavily utilized in biomedical sciences and engineering. They are a focus of interest because of their huge potential in nanotechnology. Today these materials can be synthesized and modified with various chemical functional groups which allow them to be conjugated with antibodies, ligands, and drugs of interest and thus opening a wide range of potential applications in biotechnology, magnetic separation, and preconcentration of target analytes, targeted drug delivery, and vehicles for gene and drug delivery and more importantly diagnostic imaging. Moreover, various imaging modalities have been developed over the period of time such as MRI, CT, PET, ultrasound, SERS, and optical imaging as an aid to image various disease states. These imaging modalities differ in both techniques and instrumentation and more importantly require a contrast agent with unique physiochemical properties. This led to the invention of various nanoparticulated contrast agent such as magnetic nanoparticles (Fe 3 O 4 ), gold, and silver nanoparticles for their application in these imaging modalities. In addition, to use various imaging techniques in tandem newer multifunctional nanoshells and nanocages have been developed. Thus in this review article, we aim to provide an introduction to magnetic nanoparticles (Fe 3 O 4 ), gold nanoparticles, nanoshells and nanocages, and silver nanoparticles followed by their synthesis, physiochemical properties, and citing some recent applications in the diagnostic imaging and therapy of cancer.
  21,741 738 76
Current approaches toward production of secondary plant metabolites
Md. Sarfaraj Hussain, Sheeba Fareed, Saba Ansari, Md. Akhlaquer Rahman, Iffat Zareen Ahmad, Mohd. Saeed
January-March 2012, 4(1):10-20
Plants are the tremendous source for the discovery of new products with medicinal importance in drug development. Today several distinct chemicals derived from plants are important drugs, which are currently used in one or more countries in the world. Secondary metabolites are economically important as drugs, flavor and fragrances, dye and pigments, pesticides, and food additives. Many of the drugs sold today are simple synthetic modifications or copies of the naturally obtained substances. The evolving commercial importance of secondary metabolites has in recent years resulted in a great interest in secondary metabolism, particularly in the possibility of altering the production of bioactive plant metabolites by means of tissue culture technology. Plant cell and tissue culture technologies can be established routinely under sterile conditions from explants, such as plant leaves, stems, roots, and meristems for both the ways for multiplication and extraction of secondary metabolites. In vitro production of secondary metabolite in plant cell suspension cultures has been reported from various medicinal plants, and bioreactors are the key step for their commercial production. Based on this lime light, the present review is aimed to cover phytotherapeutic application and recent advancement for the production of some important plant pharmaceuticals.
  16,983 1,889 55
Nanotechnology in cosmetics: Opportunities and challenges
Silpa Raj, Shoma Jose, US Sumod, M Sabitha
July-September 2012, 4(3):186-193
Nanotechnology is the science of manipulating atoms and molecules in the nanoscale - 80,000 times smaller than the width of a human hair. The world market for products that contain nanomaterials is expected to reach $2.6 trillion by 2015. The use of nanotechnology has stretched across various streams of science, from electronics to medicine and has now found applications in the field of cosmetics by taking the name of nanocosmetics. This widespread influence of nanotechnology in the cosmetic industries is due to the enhanced properties attained by the particles at the nano level including color, transparency, solubility etc. The different types of nanomaterials employed in cosmetics include nanosomes, liposomes, fullerenes, solid lipid nanoparticles etc. Recently, concerns over the safety of such nanocosmetics are raised and have forced the cosmetic industries to limit the use of nanotechnology in cosmetics and for enforcing laws to undergo a full-fledged safety assessment before they enter into the market. In this review, emphasis is made on the types of nanomaterials used in cosmetics by the various cosmetic brands, the potential risks caused by them both to human life and also to the environment and what all regulations have been undertaken or can be taken to overcome them.
  13,997 422 43
Differential scanning calorimetry: An invaluable tool for a detailed thermodynamic characterization of macromolecules and their interactions
Michael H Chiu, Elmar J Prenner
January-March 2011, 3(1):39-59
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.76463  PMID:21430954
Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC) is a highly sensitive technique to study the thermotropic properties of many different biological macromolecules and extracts. Since its early development, DSC has been applied to the pharmaceutical field with excipient studies and DNA drugs. In recent times, more attention has been applied to lipid-based drug delivery systems and drug interactions with biomimetic membranes. Highly reproducible phase transitions have been used to determine values, such as, the type of binding interaction, purity, stability, and release from a drug delivery mechanism. This review focuses on the use of DSC for biochemical and pharmaceutical applications.
  13,324 333 50
A novel chiral GC/MS method for the analysis of fluoxetine and norfluoxetine enantiomers in biological fluids
Janet Mifsud, Lino J Sghendo
July-September 2012, 4(3):236-245
Aims: A novel robust chiral gas chromatographic/mass spectrometric (GC/MS) method for the separation and measurement of fluoxetine and norfluoxetine enantiomers in urine and plasma was developed. Materials and Methods: The drug was extracted from the samples by a liquid-liquid technique, using chloroform, and the enantiomers were separated and measured on a chiral gas chromatographic column (HYDRODEX β-6TBDM®, 0.25 μm × 0.25 mm × 50 m). GC/MS instrumentation was used for the acquisition of data in the electron impact selective-ion monitoring mode. Results: The ions chosen were of a mass-to-charge ratio (m/z) exactly equal to 44 units, in order to measure fluoxetine enantiomers, 134 units in order to measure norfluoxetine enantiomers, and 58 units in order to measure diphenhydramine, the internal standard. The method was found to be linear and reproducible in the 50-500 ng/mL concentration range for both urine samples and plasma samples and for both fluoxetine and norfluoxetine, with correlation coefficients ranging between 0.994 and 0.997. Conclusions: This methodology has an enormous potential for application in pharmacokinetic studies of the enantiomers of fluoxetine
  13,391 67 7
Emerging fungal infections among children: A review on its clinical manifestations, diagnosis, and prevention
Akansha Jain, Shubham Jain, Swati Rawat
October-December 2010, 2(4):314-320
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.72131  PMID:21180463
The incidence of fungal infections is increasing at an alarming rate, presenting an enormous challenge to healthcare professionals. This increase is directly related to the growing population of immunocompromised individuals especially children resulting from changes in medical practice such as the use of intensive chemotherapy and immunosuppressive drugs. Although healthy children have strong natural immunity against fungal infections, then also fungal infection among children are increasing very fast. Virtually not all fungi are pathogenic and their infection is opportunistic. Fungi can occur in the form of yeast, mould, and dimorph. In children fungi can cause superficial infection, i.e., on skin, nails, and hair like oral thrush, candida diaper rash, tinea infections, etc., are various types of superficial fungal infections, subcutaneous fungal infection in tissues under the skin and lastly it causes systemic infection in deeper tissues. Most superficial and subcutaneous fungal infections are easily diagnosed and readily amenable to treatment. Opportunistic fungal infections are those that cause diseases exclusively in immunocompromised individuals, e.g., aspergillosis, zygomycosis, etc. Systemic infections can be life-threatening and are associated with high morbidity and mortality. Because diagnosis is difficult and the causative agent is often confirmed only at autopsy, the exact incidence of systemic infections is difficult to determine. The most frequently encountered pathogens are Candida albicans and Aspergillus spp. But other fungi such as non-albicans Candida spp. are increasingly important.
  10,799 246 21
A pharmacological appraisal of medicinal plants with antidiabetic potential
Vasim Khan, Abul Kalam Najmi, Mohd. Akhtar , Mohd. Aqil , Mohd. Mujeeb , KK Pillai
January-March 2012, 4(1):27-42
Diabetes mellitus is a complicated metabolic disorder that has gravely troubled the human health and quality of life. Conventional agents are being used to control diabetes along with lifestyle management. However, they are not entirely effective and no one has ever been reported to have fully recovered from diabetes. Numerous medicinal plants have been used for the management of diabetes mellitus in various traditional systems of medicine worldwide as they are a great source of biological constituents and many of them are known to be effective against diabetes. Medicinal plants with antihyperglycemic activities are being more desired, owing to lesser side-effects and low cost. This review focuses on the various plants that have been reported to be effective in diabetes. A record of various medicinal plants with their established antidiabetic and other health benefits has been reported. These include Allium sativa, Eugenia jambolana, Panax ginseng, Gymnema sylvestre, Momrodica charantia, Ocimum sanctum, Phyllanthus amarus, Pterocarpus marsupium, Trigonella foenum graecum and Tinospora cordifolia. All of them have shown a certain degree of antidiabetic activity by different mechanisms of action.
  10,231 740 24
Chemical warfare agents
K Ganesan, SK Raza, R Vijayaraghavan
July-September 2010, 2(3):166-178
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.68498  PMID:21829312
Among the Weapons of Mass Destruction, chemical warfare (CW) is probably one of the most brutal created by mankind in comparison with biological and nuclear warfare. Chemical weapons are inexpensive and are relatively easy to produce, even by small terrorist groups, to create mass casualties with small quantities. The characteristics of various CW agents, general information relevant to current physical as well as medical protection methods, detection equipment available and decontamination techniques are discussed in this review article. A brief note on Chemical Weapons Convention is also provided.
  10,185 332 30
Significance of curve of Spee: An orthodontic review
KP Senthil Kumar, S Tamizharasi
August 2012, 4(6):323-328
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.100287  PMID:23066282
Exaggerated curve of Spee is frequently observed in dental malocclusions with deep overbites. Such excessive curve of Spee alters the muscle imbalance, ultimately leading to the improper functional occlusion. It has been proposed that an imbalance between the anterior and the posterior components of occlusal force can cause the lower incisors to overerupt, the premolars to infraerupt, and the lower molars to be mesially inclined. This altered condition requires specialized skills for the practitioner. It would be useful if we have a thorough knowledge of how and when this curve of Spee develops, so that it will aid us in our treatment. The understanding of why the curve of Spee develops is limited in literature. The purpose of this article is to increase our knowledge regarding the development and its effect on dentition and its treatment in exaggerated cases.
  9,901 334 -
Chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear decontamination: Recent trends and future perspective
Vinod Kumar, Rajeev Goel, Raman Chawla, M Silambarasan, Rakesh Kumar Sharma
July-September 2010, 2(3):220-238
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.68505  PMID:21829318
Chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear (CBRN) decontamination is the removal of CBRN material from equipment or humans. The objective of the decontamination is to reduce radiation burden, salvage equipment, and materials, remove loose CBRN contaminants, and fix the remaining in place in preparation for protective storage or permanent disposal work activities. Decontamination may be carried out using chemical, electrochemical, and mechanical means. Like materials, humans may also be contaminated with CBRN contamination. Changes in cellular function can occur at lower radiation doses and exposure to chemicals. At high dose, cell death may take place. Therefore, decontamination of humans at the time of emergency while generating bare minimum waste is an enormous task requiring dedication of large number of personnel and large amount of time. General principles of CBRN decontamination are discussed in this review with emphasis on radiodecontamination.
  9,613 262 13
A review on phytochemical and pharmacological investigations of miswak (Salvadora persica Linn)
Jamal Akhtar, Khalid M Siddique, Salma Bi, Mohd Mujeeb
January-March 2011, 3(1):113-117
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.76488  PMID:21430961
The miswak is a natural toothbrush made from the twigs of the Salvadora persica (Salvadoraceae). Its use predates the inception of Islam and is frequently advocated in the Hadith (the traditions relating to the life of Prophet Muhammad PBUH ). In addition to strengthening the gums, it prevents tooth decay, eliminating toothaches and halt further increase in decay that has already set in. It creates a fragrance in the mouth, eliminates bad odor, improves the sense of taste, and causes the teeth to glow and shine. The other parts of the tree have therapeutic values as corrective, deobstruent, liver tonic, diuretic, analgesic, anthelmintic, astringent, lithontriptic, carminative, diuretic, aphrodisiac, and stomachic. The present review is therefore an effort to give detailed survey of the literature on phytochemistry and pharmacological activities of miswak.
  9,554 276 14
The thermodynamics of simple biomembrane mimetic systems
Antonio Raudino, Maria Grazia Sarpietro, Martina Pannuzzo
January-March 2011, 3(1):15-38
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.76462  PMID:21430953
Insight into the forces governing a system is essential for understanding its behavior and function. Thermodynamic investigations provide a wealth of information that is not, or is hardly, available from other methods. This article reviews thermodynamic approaches and assays to measure collective properties such as heat adsorption / emission and volume variations. These methods can be successfully applied to the study of lipid vesicles (liposomes) and biological membranes. With respect to instrumentation, differential scanning calorimetry, pressure perturbation calorimetry, isothermal titration calorimetry, dilatometry, and acoustic techniques aimed at measuring the isothermal and adiabatic processes, two- and three-dimensional compressibilities are considered. Applications of these techniques to lipid systems include the measurement of different thermodynamic parameters and a detailed characterization of thermotropic, barotropic, and lyotropic phase behavior. The membrane binding and / or partitioning of solutes (proteins, peptides, drugs, surfactants, ions, etc.) can also be quantified and modeled. Many thermodynamic assays are available for studying the effect of proteins and other additives on membranes, characterizing non-ideal mixing, domain formation, bilayer stability, curvature strain, permeability, solubilization, and fusion. Studies of membrane proteins in lipid environments elucidate lipid-protein interactions in membranes. Finally, a plethora of relaxation phenomena toward equilibrium thermodynamic structures can be also investigated. The systems are described in terms of enthalpic and entropic forces, equilibrium constants, heat capacities, partial volume changes, volume and area compressibility, and so on, also shedding light on the stability of the structures and the molecular origin and mechanism of the structural changes.
  9,235 84 3
Transvaginal ultrasonography in first trimester of pregnancy and its comparison with transabdominal ultrasonography
Aneet Kaur, Amarjit Kaur
July-September 2011, 3(3):329-338
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.84432  PMID:21966152
Objectives : Examination of pregnant women in the first trimester with transvaginal ultrasonography with the aim to study various fetal development markers, e.g., gestation sac, yolk sac, fetal heart motion, CRL length, and fetal anatomy in both normal and abnormal pregnancies. Comparative evaluation of transvaginal ultrasonography vis-ΰ-vis transabdominal scanning in the study of first trimester of pregnancy and its complications. To assess the relative merits and demerits of transvaginal ultrasonography in comparison with the transabdominal technique. Materials and Methods : The study will be conducted on 50 females patients during the first trimester of pregnancy. The study population will consist of both normal and abnormal pregnancies. These patients will be included on the basis of suspicion of or proven pregnancy of duration up to 12 weeks from LMP. The evaluation of the patients will include the following: Record of patients obstetrical history and clinical examination, record of pregnancy test and relevant investigations, ultrasonic examination of pregnancy. (a) Transabdominal ultrasound scanning will be done with moderately distended bladder by using real time scanners with low frequency probe (3/3.5 MHz); (b) transvaginal sonography will be done with the real-time sector scanner using high-frequency endovaginal probe (5/7.5 MHz), after the patient voids urine. Relevant images will be taken by using the multiformat automatic camera. Results and Conclusions : In the study of 46 normal intrauterine pregnancies, TVS showed additional information in 36 patients (78.3%) as compared to TAS, in detection of gestation sac, yolk sac, double bleb sign, or better visualization of embryonic anatomy. In the abnormal pregnancy (n=17), TVS provided more information in 11 cases (64.9%), which included detection of embryonic demise, yolk sac, double bleb sign, or subchorionic hemorrhage. Regarding ectopic gestations (n=7), TVS gave additional information in 5 cases (71.4%) which included detection of ectopic fetal pole, yolk sac, decidual cast, adnexal mass, and fluid in cul de sac. In two cases, both TAS and TVS gave equal information. However, in 2 cases TAS demonstrated the extent of intraabdominal fluid better than TVS. The other advantages of TVS over TAS are that there is no need for the patient to have uncomfortably full bladder and time is saved from having to wait for bladder to fill. Thus, the potential preoperative patient can be kept fasting. TVS is also superior in obese patients, in patients with retroverted uterus and it also bypasses obstacles such as bone, gas filled bowel, and extensive pelvic adhesions. The limitations encountered with TVS were limited manoveuribility of probe and because of the unorthodox position and angle of the transducer, correct orientation was difficult initially.
  9,142 90 3
Patent protection strategies
Himanshu Gupta, Suresh Kumar, Saroj Kumar Roy, RS Gaud
January-March 2010, 2(1):2-7
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.62694  PMID:21814422
It is widely recognized that the pharmaceutical industry faces serious financial challenges. Large numbers of blockbuster drugs are losing patent protection and going generic. The pipeline of new drugs is too sparse to fill the gap and generate a platform for future growth. Moreover, many of the new products are biologics with much narrower target patient populations and comparatively higher prices relative to traditional pharmaceuticals. So now the time has come for pharmaceutical scientists to have a better understanding of patent fundamentals. This need is illustrated by analyses of key scientific and legal issues that arose during recent patent infringement cases involving Prozac, Prilosec, and Buspar. Facing this scenario, the pharmaceutical industry has moved to accelerate drug development process and to adopt at the same time different strategies to extend the life time of the patent monopoly to provide the economic incentives and utilizing it for drug discovery and development. This review covers the need of patent protection and various strategies to extend the patent.
  8,568 614 4
Impacted canines: Etiology, diagnosis, and orthodontic management
Ranjit Manne, ChandraSekhar Gandikota, Shubhaker Rao Juvvadi, Haranath Reddy Medapati Rama, Sampath Anche
August 2012, 4(6):234-238
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.100216  PMID:23066259
Impaction of maxillary and mandibular canines is a frequently encountered clinical problem, the treatment of which usually requires an interdisciplinary approach. Surgical exposure of the impacted tooth and the complex orthodontic mechanisms that are applied to align the tooth into the arch may lead to varying amounts of damage to the supporting structures of the tooth, not to mention the long treatment duration and the financial burden to the patient. Hence, it seems worthwhile to focus on the means of early diagnosis and interception of this clinical situation. In the present article, an overview of the incidence and sequelae, as well as the surgical, periodontal, and orthodontic considerations in the management of impacted canines is presented.
  8,612 291 3
Orphan drug: Development trends and strategies
Aarti Sharma, Abraham Jacob, Manas Tandon, Dushyant Kumar
October-December 2010, 2(4):290-299
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.72128  PMID:21180460
The growth of pharma industries has slowed in recent years because of various reasons such as patent expiries, generic competition, drying pipelines, and increasingly stringent regulatory guidelines. Many blockbuster drugs will loose their exclusivity in next 5 years. Therefore, the current economic situation plus the huge generic competition shifted the focus of pharmaceutical companies from the essential medicines to the new business model - niche busters, also called orphan drugs. Orphan drugs may help pharma companies to reduce the impact of revenue loss caused by patent expiries of blockbuster drugs. The new business model of orphan drugs could offer an integrated healthcare solution that enables pharma companies to develop newer areas of therapeutics, diagnosis, treatment, monitoring, and patient support. Incentives for drug development provided by governments, as well as support from the FDA and EU Commission in special protocols, are a further boost for the companies developing orphan drugs. Although there may still be challenges ahead for the pharmaceutical industry, orphan drugs seem to offer the key to recovery and stability within the market. In our study, we have compared the policies and orphan drug incentives worldwide alongwith the challenges faced by the pharmaceutical companies. Recent developments are seen in orphan drug approval, the various drugs in orphan drug pipeline, and the future prospectives for orphan drugs and diseases.
  8,807 0 25
Cyclodextrins in delivery systems: Applications
Gaurav Tiwari, Ruchi Tiwari, Awani K Rai
April-June 2010, 2(2):72-79
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.67003  PMID:21814436
Cyclodextrins (CDs) are a family of cyclic oligosaccharides with a hydrophilic outer surface and a lipophilic central cavity. CD molecules are relatively large with a number of hydrogen donors and acceptors and, thus in general, they do not permeate lipophilic membranes. In the pharmaceutical industry, CDs have mainly been used as complexing agents to increase aqueous solubility of poorly soluble drugs and to increase their bioavailability and stability. CDs are used in pharmaceutical applications for numerous purposes, including improving the bioavailability of drugs. Current CD-based therapeutics is described and possible future applications are discussed. CD-containing polymers are reviewed and their use in drug delivery is presented. Of specific interest is the use of CD-containing polymers to provide unique capabilities for the delivery of nucleic acids. Studies in both humans and animals have shown that CDs can be used to improve drug delivery from almost any type of drug formulation. Currently, there are approximately 30 different pharmaceutical products worldwide containing drug/CD complexes in the market.
  7,800 533 75
Fast dissolving strips: A novel approach for the delivery of verapamil
S Kunte, P Tandale
October-December 2010, 2(4):325-328
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.72133  PMID:21180465
Objective: Fast dissolving drug delivery system offers a solution for those patients having difficulty in swallowing tablets/capsules etc. Verapamil is a calcium channel blocker used as an antianginal, antiarrhythmic, and antihypertensive agent with extensive first pass metabolism which results in less bioavailability. This work investigated the possibility of developing verapamil fast dissolving strips allowing fast, reproducible drug dissolution in the oral cavity; thus bypassing first pass metabolism. Materials and methods: The fast dissolving strips were prepared by solvent casting technique with the help of HPMC E6 and maltodextrin. The strips were evaluated for drug content uniformity, film thickness, folding endurance, in vitro disintegration time, in vitro dissolution studies, surface pH study, and palatability study. Results: Official criteria for evaluation parameters were fulfilled by all formulations. Disintegration time showed by formulations was found to be in range of 20.4-28.6 sec. Based on the evaluation parameters, the formulation containing 2% HPMC E6 and 3.5% maltodextrin showed optimum performance against other formulations. Conclusion: It was concluded that the fast dissolving strips of verapamil can be made by solvent casting technique with enhanced dissolution rate, taste masking, and hence better patient compliance and effective therapy
  7,306 599 21
Recent trends and future of pharmaceutical packaging technology
Nityanand Zadbuke, Sadhana Shahi, Bhushan Gulecha, Abhay Padalkar, Mahesh Thube
April-June 2013, 5(2):98-110
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.111820  PMID:23833515
The pharmaceutical packaging market is constantly advancing and has experienced annual growth of at least five percent per annum in the past few years. The market is now reckoned to be worth over $20 billion a year. As with most other packaged goods, pharmaceuticals need reliable and speedy packaging solutions that deliver a combination of product protection, quality, tamper evidence, patient comfort and security needs. Constant innovations in the pharmaceuticals themselves such as, blow fill seal (BFS) vials, anti-counterfeit measures, plasma impulse chemical vapor deposition (PICVD) coating technology, snap off ampoules, unit dose vials, two-in-one prefilled vial design, prefilled syringes and child-resistant packs have a direct impact on the packaging. The review details several of the recent pharmaceutical packaging trends that are impacting packaging industry, and offers some predictions for the future.
  7,328 299 6
Triage, monitoring, and treatment of mass casualty events involving chemical, biological, radiological, or nuclear agents
Aruna C Ramesh, S Kumar
July-September 2010, 2(3):239-247
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.68506  PMID:21829319
In a mass casualty situation due to chemical, biological, radiological, or nuclear (CBRN) event, triage is absolutely required for categorizing the casualties in accordance with medical care priorities. Dealing with a CBRN event always starts at the local level. Even before the detection and analysis of agents can be undertaken, zoning, triage, decontamination, and treatment should be initiated promptly. While applying the triage system, the available medical resources and maximal utilization of medical assets should be taken into consideration by experienced triage officers who are most familiar with the natural course of the injury presented and have detailed information on medical assets. There are several triage systems that can be applied to CBRN casualties. With no one standardized system globally or nationally available, it is important for deploying a triage and decontamination system which is easy to follow and flexible to the available medical resources, casualty number, and severity of injury.
  7,453 173 6
Biomembrane models and drug-biomembrane interaction studies: Involvement in drug design and development
R Pignatello, T Musumeci, L Basile, C Carbone, G Puglisi
January-March 2011, 3(1):4-14
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.76461  PMID:21430952
Contact with many different biological membranes goes along the destiny of a drug after its systemic administration. From the circulating macrophage cells to the vessel endothelium, to more complex absorption barriers, the interaction of a biomolecule with these membranes largely affects its rate and time of biodistribution in the body and at the target sites. Therefore, investigating the phenomena occurring on the cell membranes, as well as their different interaction with drugs in the physiological or pathological conditions, is important to exploit the molecular basis of many diseases and to identify new potential therapeutic strategies. Of course, the complexity of the structure and functions of biological and cell membranes, has pushed researchers toward the proposition and validation of simpler two- and three-dimensional membrane models, whose utility and drawbacks will be discussed. This review also describes the analytical methods used to look at the interactions among bioactive compounds with biological membrane models, with a particular accent on the calorimetric techniques. These studies can be considered as a powerful tool for medicinal chemistry and pharmaceutical technology, in the steps of designing new drugs and optimizing the activity and safety profile of compounds already used in the therapy.
  7,423 149 43
Khamiras, a natural cardiac tonic: An overview
Sayeed Ahmad, Shabana Rehman, Aftab M Ahmad, Khalid M Siddiqui, Seemin Shaukat, Masood Shah Khan, YT Kamal, Tamanna Jahangir
April-June 2010, 2(2):93-99
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.67009  PMID:21814439
The Unani system of Medicine (Unanipathy), which originated in Greece, is based on the principles proposed by Galen, a Greek practitioner. Since then, many Arab and Persian scholars have contributed to the system. Among them Ibn-e-Sina, an Arab philosopher and Physicist who wrote 'Kitab-al-shifa' are worth mentioning. This system has an extensive and inspiring record in India. It was introduced in India around the tenth century A.D with the spread of Islamic civilization. At present, Unanipathy has become an important part of the Indian system of Medicine. Unani medicines have been used since ancient times, as medicines for the treatment of various ailments. In spite of the great advances observed in modern medicine in recent decades, Unani drugs still make an important contribution to healthcare. The Unani system of medicine is matchless in treating chronic diseases like arthritis, asthma, mental, cardiac, and digestive disorders, urinary infections, and sexual diseases. The medicines administered go well with the temperament of the patient, thus speeding up the process of recovery and also reducing the risk of drug reaction. The Unani system of medicine recognizes the influence of the surroundings and ecological conditions on the state of health of human beings. The system aims at restoring the equilibrium of various elements and faculties of the human body. It has laid down six essential prerequisites for the prevention of diseases and places great emphasis, on the one hand, on the maintenance of proper ecological balance, and on the other, on keeping water, food, and air free from pollution. These essentials, known as 'Asbab-e-Sitta Zarooriya', are air, food, and drink, bodily movement and repose, psychic movement and repose, sleep and wakefulness, and excretion and retention. The Unani system is a secular system in temperament and is popular among the masses. In Unani medicine, although the general preference is for single drugs, compound formulations are also used in the treatment of various complex and chronic disorders. In the light of the present knowledge, this review is a small effort to discuss the efficacious nature of 'Khamira', a semi-solid preparation, which is traditionally used for cardiac ailments, such as, palpitations, weakness of the heart, and so on. On the basis of their constituents these are named as, Khamira Aabresham, Khamira Gaozaban, Khamira Marwareed, and so on. Khameeras are also used as general tonics for other vital organs like the liver and brain. In view of the increasing number of cardiac diseases, a thorough evaluation of this ancient work on Khamira is of special significance.
  7,262 251 6
Structural modifications of quinoline-based antimalarial agents: Recent developments
Sandhya Bawa, Suresh Kumar, Sushma Drabu, Rajiv Kumar
April-June 2010, 2(2):64-71
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.67002  PMID:21814435
Antimalarial drugs constitute a major part of antiprotozoal drugs and have been in practice for a long time. Antimalarial agents generally belong to the class of quinoline which acts by interfering with heme metabolism. The recent increase in development of chloroquine-resistant strains of Plasmodium falciparum and failure of vaccination program against malaria have fuelled the drug discovery program against this old and widespread disease. Quinoline and its related derivative comprise a class of heterocycles, which has been exploited immensely than any other nucleus for the development of potent antimalarial agents. Various chemical modifications of quinoline have been attempted to achieve analogs with potent antimalarial properties against sensitive as well as resistant strains of Plasmodium sp., together with minimal potential undesirable side effects. This review outlines essentially some of the recent chemical modifications undertaken for the development of potent antimalarial agents based on quinoline.
  6,991 492 23
Chitinases: An update
Rifat Hamid, Minhaj A Khan, Mahboob Ahmad, Malik Mobeen Ahmad, Malik Zainul Abdin, Javed Musarrat, Saleem Javed
January-March 2013, 5(1):21-29
DOI:10.4103/0975-7406.106559  PMID:23559820
Chitin, the second most abundant polysaccharide in nature after cellulose, is found in the exoskeleton of insects, fungi, yeast, and algae, and in the internal structures of other vertebrates. Chitinases are enzymes that degrade chitin. Chitinases contribute to the generation of carbon and nitrogen in the ecosystem. Chitin and chitinolytic enzymes are gaining importance for their biotechnological applications, especially the chitinases exploited in agriculture fields to control pathogens. Chitinases have a use in human health care, especially in human diseases like asthma. Chitinases have wide-ranging applications including the preparation of pharmaceutically important chitooligosaccharides and N-acetyl D glucosamine, preparation of single-cell protein, isolation of protoplasts from fungi and yeast, control of pathogenic fungi, treatment of chitinous waste, mosquito control and morphogenesis, etc. In this review, the various types of chitinases and the chitinases found in different organisms such as bacteria, plants, fungi, and mammals are discussed.
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