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Prematurity is a risk factor for hypertension, vascular stiffness, nephron deficit and adult onset cardiorenal disease. The vascular tree and kidneys share morphogenic drivers that promote maturation in utero before 36 weeks of gestation. Vascular elastin accrual terminates after birth leaving collagen to promote vascular stiffness. Our objective was to determine if the histomorphometry of the umbilical artery, an extension of the aorta, parallels nephron mass across gestational age groups. From a cohort of 54 newborns, 32 umbilical cord specimens were adequate for evaluation. The umbilical cord was sectioned, stained with trichrome, and digitalized. Muscular and collagenous areas of the umbilical artery were measured in pixels using the Image J 1.48q software. Total kidney volume was measured by ultrasound and factored by body surface area (TKV/BSA). The umbilical artery total area was significantly greater in term v. preterm infants (9.3±1.3 v. 7.0±2.0 mm2; P<0.05) and increased with gestational age; while the percent muscular and collagen areas were independent of gestational age (R2=0.04; P=ns). Percent muscular area correlated positively with TKV/BSA (r=0.53; P=0.002); while an increase in collagen correlated inversely with kidney mass (r=−0.53; P=0.002). In conclusion, an enhanced % muscular area and presumed vascular elasticity was associated with increased renal mass in all infants. Umbilical artery histomorphometry provides a link between the intrauterine environment, vascular and kidney development.
Although cognitive deficits in bipolar disorder have been associated with diminished functional outcome, this relationship has been studied primarily through cross-sectional designs, and has not been studied in patients early in the course of illness. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the impact of cognitive functioning on longitudinal 6-month functional and clinical outcome in recently diagnosed clinically stable patients with bipolar disorder.
A total of 53 recently diagnosed patients with DSM-IV bipolar disorder type I were assessed within 3 months of their first manic episode using a neuropsychological battery measuring verbal/pre-morbid intellectual functioning, learning/memory, spatial/non-verbal reasoning, attention/processing speed and executive function. Functional outcome was assessed at baseline and 6 months using the Multidimensional Scale of Independent Functioning (MSIF) and DSM-IV Global Assessment of Functioning Scale (GAF). Clinical outcome was assessed with symptom ratings and by monitoring onset of new mood episodes.
Memory, particularly verbal learning/memory, was robustly associated with 6-month functional outcome on the MSIF, even after partialling out the influence of mood symptoms and substance abuse co-morbidity. Depression ratings at 6 months, but not cognitive variables, were associated with 6-month GAF scores. Cognitive functioning was not associated with 6-month clinical outcome.
Memory was associated with 6-month longitudinal functional but not clinical outcome in recently diagnosed patients with bipolar disorder. These data further support the distinction between clinical and functional outcome, and emphasize the need for identification of, and development of treatments for, cognitive impairments early in the course of bipolar disorder.
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