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Potential diagnostic value of pleural fluid cytokines levels for tuberculous pleural effusio

Abstract: Abstract Patients with tuberculous pleural effusion (TPE) or malignant pleural effusions (MPE) frequently have similar pleural fluid profiles. New biomarkers for the differential diagnosis of TPE are required. We determined whether cytokine profiles in the PE of patients could aid the differential diagnosis of TPE. 30 patients with TPE, 30 patients with MPE, 14 patients with empyema (EMP) and 14 patients with parapneumonic effusion (PPE) were enrolled between Dec 2018 and 2019. The levels of interleukin (IL)-6, IL-18, IL-27, CXCL8, CCL-1 and IP-10 were determined in PE by ELISA along with measurements of adenosine deaminase (ADA). The best predictors of TPE were combined ADA.IL-27 [optimal cut-off value = 42.68 (103 U ng/l2), sensitivity 100%, specificity 98.28%], ADA [cut off value 27.5 (IU/l), sensitivity 90%, specificity 96.5%] and IL-27 [cut-off value = 2363 (pg/ml), sensitivity 96.7%, specificity 98.3%, p ≤ 0.0001]. A high level of IL-6 [cut-off value = 3260 (pg/ml), sensitivity 100%, specificity 67.2%], CXCL8 [cut-off value = 144.5 (pg/ml), sensitivity 93.3%, specificity 58.6%], CCL1 [cut-off value = 54 (pg/ml), sensitivity 100%, specificity 70.7%] and IP-10 [cut-off value = 891.9 (pg/ml), sensitivity 83.3%, specificity 48.3%] were also predictive of TPE. High ADA.IL-27, ADA and IL-27 levels differentiate between TPE and non-TPE with improved specificity and diagnostic accuracy and may be useful clinically. © 2021, The Author(s)..

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No clinical benefit of high dose corticosteroid administration in patients with COVID-19: A preliminary report of a randomized clinical trial

Abstract: The aim of this study was to evaluate the clinical effects of dexamethasone administration in patients with mild to moderate acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) due to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The study included 50 patients who were randomly assigned to the dexamethasone group or control group. Dexamethasone was administered at a dose of 20 mg/day from day 1–5 and then at 10 mg/day from day 6–10. The need for invasive mechanical ventilation, death rate, duration of clinical improvement, length of hospital stay, and radiological changes in the computed tomography scan were assessed. The results revealed that 92% and 96% of patients in the dexamethasone and control groups, respectively, required noninvasive ventilation (P = 0.500). Among them, 52% and 44% of patients in the dexamethasone and control groups, respectively, required invasive mechanical ventilation (P = 0.389). At the end of the study, 64% of patients in the dexamethasone group and 60% of patients in the control group died (P = 0.500); the remaining patients were discharged from the hospital during the 28-day follow-up period. The median length of hospital stay was 11 days in the dexamethasone group and 6 days in the control group (P = 0.036) and the median length of hospital stay was 7 days in the dexamethasone group and 3 days in the control group (P < 0.001). No significant differences were observed in the other outcomes. This study showed that corticosteroid administration had no clinical benefit in patients with COVID-19-induced mild to moderate ARDS. © 2021 Elsevier B.V.

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Evaluation of interleukin-2 to detect active and latent tuberculosis among household contacts of pulmonary tuberculosis cases

Abstract:Background: The interferon-gamma release assays (IGRAs) are the most important diagnostic approach to Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection diagnosis. However, they cannot discriminate between latent tuberculosis infection (LTBI) and active tuberculosis (TB). Some recent studies suggested that interleukin-2 (IL-2) response to M. tuberculosis could be utilized as a potential biomarker to discriminate active disease from LTBI. Objectives: The current study aimed at evaluating the potential role of IL-2 to detect both active TB and LTBI among household contacts of patients with pulmonary TB in two TB-endemic regions of Iran. Methods: A total of 650 household contacts of patients with TB were invited to participate in the current study. All subjects were diagnosed on extensive clinical evaluation of active TB and LTBI based on clinical manifestations and laboratory findings. The IGRA test was performed using QuantiFERON®-TB Gold Plus. The serum level of IL-2 was measured using the ELISA Development Kit. Results: A total of 237 household contacts entered the final analysis, including 132 patients with LTBI and three with active TB. In addition, 14 subjects were included as TB controls and 102 as TB-uninfected controls. The serum level of IL-2 was significantly higher in active TB and LTBI patients than TB-uninfected controls. The ROC curve was plotted between active TB and LTBI, revealing that the cutoff point of 25.5 pg/mL identifies the active form with 88.24% sensitivity and 36.36% specificity. Conclusions: The current study indicated that the IL-2 assay could not discriminate between active TB and LTBI with acceptable sensitivity. © 2021, Author(s).

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Serum cytokine levels of COVID-19 patients after 7 days of treatment with Favipiravir or Kaletra

Abstract:Background: Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has infected 86,4 M patients and resulted in 1,86 M deaths worldwide. Severe COVID-19 patients have elevated blood levels of interleukin-6 (IL-6), IL-1β, tumor necrosis factor (TNF)α, IL-8 and interferon (IFN)γ. Objective: To investigate the effect of antiviral treatment serum cytokines in severe COVID-19 patients. Methods: Blood was obtained from 29 patients (aged 32–79 yr) with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 upon admission and 7 days after antiviral (Favipiravir or Lopinavir/Ritonavir) treatment. Patients also received standard supportive treatment in this retrospective observational study. Chest computed tomography (CT) scans were evaluated to investigate lung manifestations of COVID-19. Serum was also obtained and cytokines levels were evaluated. 19 age- and gender-matched healthy controls were studied. Results: Anti-viral therapy significantly reduced CT scan scores and the elevated serum levels of C-reactive protein (CRP) and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH). In contrast, serum levels of IL-6, IL-8 and IFNγ were elevated at baseline in COVID-19 subjects compared to healthy subjects with IL-6 (p = 0.006) and IL-8 (p = 0.011) levels being further elevated after antiviral therapy. IL-1β (p = 0.01) and TNFα (p = 0.069) levels were also enhanced after treatment but baseline levels were similar to those of healthy controls. These changes occurred irrespective of whether patients were admitted to the intensive care unit. Conclusion: Antiviral treatments did not suppress the inflammatory phase of COVID-19 after 7 days treatment although CT, CRP and LDH suggest a decline in lung inflammation. There was limited evidence for a viral-mediated cytokine storm in these COVID-19 subjects. © 2021 Elsevier B.V.

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SARS-CoV-2 antibody seroprevalence in the general population and high-risk occupational groups across 18 cities in Iran: a population-based cross-sectional study

Abstract:Background: Rapid increases in cases of COVID-19 were observed in multiple cities in Iran towards the start of the pandemic. However, the true infection rate remains unknown. We aimed to assess the seroprevalence of antibodies against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) in 18 cities of Iran as an indicator of the infection rate. Methods: In this population-based cross-sectional study, we randomly selected and invited study participants from the general population (from lists of people registered with the Iranian electronic health record system or health-care centres) and a high-risk population of individuals likely to have close social contact with SARS-CoV-2-infected individuals through their occupation (from employee lists provided by relevant agencies or companies, such as supermarket chains) across 18 cities in 17 Iranian provinces. Participants were asked questions on their demographic characteristics, medical history, recent COVID-19-related symptoms, and COVID-19-related exposures. Iran Food and Drug Administration-approved Pishtaz Teb SARS-CoV-2 ELISA kits were used to detect SARS-CoV-2-specific IgG and IgM antibodies in blood samples from participants. Seroprevalence was estimated on the basis of ELISA test results and adjusted for population weighting (by age, sex, and city population size) and test performance (according to our independent validation of sensitivity and specificity). Findings: From 9181 individuals who were initially contacted between April 17 and June 2, 2020, 243 individuals refused to provide blood samples and 36 did not provide demographic information and were excluded from the analysis. Among the 8902 individuals included in the analysis, 5372 had occupations with a high risk of exposure to SARS-CoV-2 and 3530 were recruited from the general population. The overall population weight-adjusted and test performance-adjusted prevalence of antibody seropositivity in the general population was 17·1% (95% CI 14·6–19·5), implying that 4 265 542 (95% CI 3 659 043–4 887 078) individuals from the 18 cities included were infected by the end of April, 2020. The adjusted seroprevalence of SARS-CoV-2-specific antibodies varied greatly by city, with the highest estimates found in Rasht (72·6% [53·9–92·8]) and Qom (58·5% [37·2–83·9]). The overall population weight-adjusted and test performance-adjusted seroprevalence in the high-risk population was 20·0% (18·5–21·7) and showed little variation between the occupations included. Interpretations: Seroprevalence is likely to be much higher than the reported prevalence of COVID-19 based on confirmed COVID-19 cases in Iran. Despite high seroprevalence in a few cities, a large proportion of the population is still uninfected. The potential shortcomings of current public health policies should therefore be identified to prevent future epidemic waves in Iran. Funding: Iranian Ministry of Health and Medical Education. Translation: For the Farsi translation of the abstract see Supplementary Materials section. © 2021 Elsevier Ltd

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Prevalence of Anti-SARS-CoV-2 Specific Antibodies in Health-Care Workers Compared to General Population during an Early Phase of the Pandemic, Tehran-Iran

Abstract:Background: BACKGROUND: Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) rapidly transmits in general population, mainly between health-care workers (HCWs) who are in close contact with patients. OBJECTIVE: To study the seropositivity of HCWs as a high-risk group compared to general population. METHODS: 72 samples were obtained from HCWs working in Masih Daneshvari hospital as one of the main COVID-19 admission centers in Tehran, during April 4 to 6, 2020. Also we collected 2021 blood samples from general population. The SARS-CoV-2 specific IgM, and IgG antibodies in the collected serum specimens were measured by commercial ELISA kits. RESULTS: Based on the clinical manifestations, 25.0%, 47.2%, and 27.8% of HCWs were categorized as symptomatic with typical symptoms, symptomatic with atypical symptoms, and asymptomatic, respectively. Symptomatic individuals with typical and atypical symptoms were 63.2% and 36.8% positive in RT-PCR test, respectively. Anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgM and IgG antibodies were detected in 15.3% and 27.8% of HCWs samples, respectively. Antibody testing in the general population indicated that SARS-CoV-2 specific IgM and IgG were found in (162/2021) 8%, and (290/2021) 14.4%, respectively. The frequency of positive cases of IgM and IgG were significantly increased in HCWs compared to general population (p= 0.028 for IgM and p= 0.002 for IgG). CONCLUSION: The frequency of SARS-CoV-2 specific antibodies in HCWs was higher than general population indicating a higher viral transmission via close exposure with COVID-19 patients.

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Combination therapy of IFNβ1 with lopinavir–ritonavir, increases oxygenation, survival and discharging of sever COVID-19 infected inpatients

Abstract:Objective: Interferon Beta-1a (IFN-β1-a), an immunomodulatory mediator with antiviral effects, has shown in vivo and in vitro activities especially on coronavirus including SARS-CoV-2. COVID-19 defined as the disease caused by infection with SARS-CoV-2. The virus has been illustrated inhibits the production of IFN-β1-a from inflammatory cells. We conducted a retrospective study of all adult confirmed COVID-19 hospitalized patients who received combination of three doses of 12 million international units of IFN-β1-a and Lopinavir 400 mg and Ritonavir 100 mg every 12 h (case group) for 14 days besides standard care and age- and sex- matched COVID-19 patients with receiving lopinavir/ritonavir (control group) at Masih Daneshvari Hospital as a designated hospital for COVID-19 between Feb 19 and Apr 30, 2020. Multivariate analysis was done to determine the impact of IFN-β1-a on outcome and all-cause mortality. 152 cases in IFN-β1-a group and 304 cases as control group were included. IFN-β1-a group stayed at hospital longer and required noninvasive ventilation more than control group (13 vs. 6 days, p = 0.001) and (34% vs. 24%, p = 0.04), respectively. During treatment, 57 (12.5%) patients died. The death rate in case and control groups was 11% and 13% respectively. In multivariate analysis, not receiving IFN-β1-a (HR 5.12, 95% CI: 2.77–9.45), comorbidity (HR 2.28, 95% CI: 1.13–4.60) and noninvasive ventilation (HR 2.77, 95% CI: 1.56–4.93) remained significantly associated with all-cause mortality. In this study, risk of death decreased by using IFN-β1-a in COVID-19 patients. More clinical study will be necessary to measure efficacy of IFN-β1-a in COVID-19 treatment. © 2020

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Management of ST-segment-elevation myocardial infarction during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak: Iranian“247” National Committees position paper on primary percutaneous coronary intervention

BACKGROUND: World Health Organization has designated coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) as a pandemic. During the past several weeks, a considerable burden has been imposed on the Iranians healthcare system. The present document reviewed the latest evidence and expert opinion regarding the management of ST-segment-elevation myocardial infarction during the outbreak of COVID-19 and outlines a practical algorithm for it. © 2020 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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COVID-19: Molecular and Cellular Response

Abstract:In late December 2019, a vtiral pneumonia with an unknown agent was reported in Wuhan, China. A novel coronavirus was identified as the causative agent. Because of the human-to-human transmission and rapid spread; coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has rapidly increased to an epidemic scale and poses a severe threat to human health; it has been declared a public health emergency of international concern (PHEIC) by the World Health Organization (WHO). This review aims to summarize the recent research progress of COVID-19 molecular features and immunopathogenesis to provide a reference for further research in prevention and treatment of SARS coronavirus2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection based on the knowledge from researches on SARS-CoV and Middle East respiratory syndrome-related coronavirus (MERS-CoV). © Copyright © 2021 Alipoor, Mortaz, Jamaati, Tabarsi, Bayram, Varahram and Adcock.

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Myocarditis detected after COVID-19 recovery

Abstract:Background: No abstract available

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Clinical and demographic characteristics of patients with COVID-19 infection: Statistics from a single hospital in Iran

Abstract:Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has caused a global pandemic in early 2020. This infectious disorder has a heterogeneous course ranging from asymptomatic disorder to a critical situation needing intensive cares. In the current study, we present a report of affected patients admitted in a single hospital in Iran. Eighty-two hospitalized patients with COVID-19 were assessed. Demographic, clinical, and paraclinical parameters were gathered and statistically analyzed. The median age (IQR) of the patients was 57.32 (45.75, 70) years. At primary evaluation, fever was present in 45.12% of the affected individuals. The most common clinical symptoms were dyspnea (81.71%) and cough (65.85%). Totally, 12 (14.63%) and 14 (17.07%) of patients had low and high WBC counts, respectively. Lymphopenia was detected in 36 (43.9%) of patients, while 6 (7.32%) of patients had lymphocytosis. High levels of Il-6 were detected in 4 (4.88%) of patients. CRP levels were elevated in 69 (84.1%) of patients. The median (IQR) of hospitalization was 7 (5, 9) days. Totally, 26 patients (31%) were hospitalized in ICU. All patients were discharged with good health conditions except for one patient who died. The current study shows the heterogeneous clinical manifestations and paraclinical parameters of COVID-19 patients. © 2021 - IOS Press. All rights reserved.

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Evaluating the effects of Intravenous Immunoglobulin (IVIg) on the management of severe COVID-19 cases: A randomized controlled trial

Abstract:Background: The newly discovered coronavirus has turned into coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and it rages at an unprecedented rate. Considering the findings of previous studies on the use of Intravenous Immunoglobulin (IVIg) for treating severe H1N1 infection and the satisfying results for reducing viral load and mortality, this study aimed to investigate the potential usefulness of IVIg for the management of severe cases. Methods: In this randomized controlled trial, 84 patients were included: 52 in the IVIg group and 32 in the control group. The intervention group received IVIg at a dose of 400 mg/kg, IV, daily for three days. Both groups received hydroxychloroquine, lopinavir/ritonavir and supportive care. The demographic data, mortality rate, the need for mechanical ventilation, length of stay in hospital and in Intensive Care Unit (ICU), and imaging findings were recorded and compared in terms of the mentioned factors. Results: The mean time from admission to IVIg initiation was 3.84 ± 3.35 days. There was no significant difference between the two groups in terms of mortality rate (P-value = 0.8) and the need for mechanical ventilation (P-value = 0.39). The length of hospital stay was significantly lower for the control group than that of the intervention group (P-value = 0.003). There was a significant positive relationship between the time from hospital admission to IVIg initiation and the length of stay in the hospital and ICU among the survivors (P-value < 0.001 and =0.01, respectively). Conclusions: Our findings did not support the use of IVIg in combination with hydroxychloroquine and lopinavir/ritonavir in treatment of severe COVID-19 cases. © 2020

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COVID-19 and substance use disorders: Recommendations to a comprehensive healthcare response. an international society of addiction medicine practice and policy interest group position paper

Abstract:Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) is escalating all over the world and has higher morbidities and mortalities in certain vulnerable populations. People Who Use Drugs (PWUD) are a marginalized and stigmatized group with weaker immunity responses, vulnerability to stress, poor health conditions, high-risk behaviors, and lower access to health care services. These conditions put them at a higher risk of COVID-19 infection and its complications. In this paper, an international group of experts on addiction medicine, infectious diseases, and disaster psychiatry explore the possible raised concerns in this issue and provide recommendations to manage the comorbidity of COVID-19 and Substance Use Disorder (SUD). © 2020 Iran University of Medical Sciences. All rights reserved.

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Prevalence and Mechanisms of Carbapenem Resistance in Acinetobacter baumannii: A Comprehensive Systematic Review of Cross-Sectional Studies from Iran

Abstract:Introduction: Carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii (CRAB) is recognized to be among the most difficult antimicrobial-resistant gram-negative bacilli to control and treat. An understanding of the epidemiology of CRAB and the mechanisms of resistance to carbapenems is necessary to develop strategies to curtail their spread. Methods: Electronic databases were searched from January 1995 to December 2017 for all studies, which: (1) provide data on the frequency and antibiotic resistance profile of the isolated A. baumannii and (2) describe the mechanisms of carbapenem resistance in detail. Results: Sixty-eight studies were found referring to mechanisms of carbapenem resistance in clinical isolates of A. baumannii, and 56 studies were found referring to the frequency of CRAB. The pooled frequency of carbapenem resistance was 85.1% (95% confidence interval [CI]: 82.2-88.1) in 8,067 clinical isolates of A. baumannii. Resistances due to blaOXA23 (55.3%), blaOXA24 (41.4%), and blaOXA58 (5.2%) genes were the most prevalent reported mechanisms of resistance to carbapenem, respectively. Conclusions: Our data warn that CRAB will rise if the current situation remains uncontrolled. Better control infection strategies and antibiotic managements, particularly in the health care systems, are needed to limit the spread of this pathogen. © Copyright 2020, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers 2020.

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Successful Treatment of Covid-19 Associated Cytokine Release Syndrome with Colchicine. A Case Report and Review of Literature

Abstract:We describe the case of a 42 year old, healthy patient with Covid-19 who despite improvement in his respiratory symptoms developed a mild to moderate cytokine release syndrome (CRS) and an associated monoarticular gout flare. Since the patient refused admission to the hospital and had stable vital signs, we chose to treat him with a safe anti-inflammatory and non-immunosuppressive therapy. To hit two birds with one stone, we considered colchicine, as it has systemic anti-inflammatory effects and is also effective in gout flare. Unexpectedly, 48 hours after treatment, not only did his ongoing fever and toe pain disappear, he also had significant improvements in his general state of health and all his inflammatory markers including fibrinogen, ferritin, D-dimer, and IL-6 levels normalized. To our knowledge, the use of colchicine in Covid-19 and CRS has not been reported. This observation merits the consideration of colchicine as a safe, inexpensive and oral medication for the treatment of mild to moderate CRS in Covid-19 patients. More importantly, in Covid-19 patients with early lung involvement colchicine may be an appropriate candidate to prevent CRS in adjunction with routine antiviral agents. Indeed, multicenter, randomized controlled studies are required to evaluate the benefits of this therapy. © 2020, © 2020 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

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Proteomic and genomic biomarkers for Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer: Peroxiredoxin, Haptoglobin, and Alpha-1 antitrypsin

Abstract:Background: The development of lung cancer is a multifactorial process that involves the environmental and genetic factors. The mortality rate of this cancer is higher than breast, colorectal, and prostate cancers. In this study, we try to analyze the proteome of patients with Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer (NSCLC) and compare it with the healthy samples. Methods: This study has compared 30 lung tissue samples from patients with NSCLC and 30 healthy samples using proteomics and RT-PCR. Hence, tissue samples were obtained from the surgical ward in sterile conditions, and then, protein extraction applied to them. At the next stage, two-dimensional electrophoresis and mass spectrometry LCMS/MS were performed for protein isolation and sequencing, respectively. Results: The proteome analysis identified more than 40 differences in proteomic pattern of normal lung tissues compared to lung tissues with NSCLC. Peroxiredoxin, Haptoglobin, and Alpha-1 antitrypsin proteins were identified. Molecularly, it has also been shown that the two main proteins of Peroxiredoxin-2 and Alpha-1 antitrypsin were upregulated, and the expression of Haptoglobin protein was downregulated in cancer tissue. Conclusion: The results of this study showed that there are some differences in term of protein content between the normal and cancerous lung tissues. Further studies are needed to evaluate these proteins that investigate whether these proteins can candidate as biomarkers to use in the early diagnosis of patients with NSCLC. © 2020 The Authors. Cancer Medicine published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

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EPA and DHA have selective toxicity for PBMCs from multiple myeloma patients in a partly caspase-dependent manner

Abstract: Poly-unsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) have been shown to have cytotoxic effects in both solid and non-solid tumors. Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) are among the most studied PUFAs. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the cytotoxic effects of these two fatty acids (FAs) in the peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) obtained from untreated patients (new cases) with confirmed symptomatic multiple myeloma (MM). Our results showed that EPA at the concentration of 100 μM and DHA at 50 and 100 μM induce potent apoptotic effects in the PBMCs of MM patients (P < 0.05) as evidenced by Annexin V and propidium iodide (PI) staining, while they have little or no effects on the PBMCs isolated from healthy donors (P > 0.05). The observed effects were concentration- and time-dependent and 72 h treatment with DHA at a concentration of 100 μM had the strongest effect (P < 0.01). CD138 + cells isolated from MM patients showed great sensitivity to EPA/DHA. EPA- and DHA-induced apoptosis was significantly inhibited by the pan-caspase inhibitor (Z-VAD-FMK), indicating that cell death was at least partly dependent on caspase activation. The results of the present study showed that EPA and DHA have selective toxicities for malignant human plasma cells from MM patients, but not for mononuclear cells of healthy donors. These results warrant further studies with larger study populations to investigate the usefulness of PUFAs as a promising adjunctive therapy in the treatment of MM. © 2019 Elsevier Ltd and European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism

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