Surgery (Austin & Northern Health) - Research Publications

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    3D printed patient-specific prostate cancer models to guide nerve-sparing robot-assisted radical prostatectomy: a systematic review
    Coles-Black, J ; Ong, S ; Teh, J ; Kearns, P ; Ischia, J ; Bolton, D ; Lawrentschuk, N (SPRINGERNATURE, 2022-03-29)
    Precise knowledge of each patient's index cancer and surrounding anatomy is required for nerve-sparing robot-assisted radical prostatectomy (NS-RARP). Complementary to this, 3D printing has proven its utility in improving the visualisation of complex anatomy. This is the first systematic review to critically assess the potential of 3D printed patient-specific prostate cancer models in improving visualisation and the practice of NS-RARP. A literature search of PubMed and OVID Medline databases was performed using the terms "3D Printing", "Robot Assisted Radical Prostatectomy" and related index terms as per the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines. Eight articles were included; six were identified via database searches, to which a further two articles were located via a snowballing approach. Eight papers were identified for review. There were five prospective single centre studies, one case series, one technical report and one letter to the editor. Of these articles, five publications (62.5%) reported on the utility of 3D printed models for NS-RARP planning. Two publications (25%) utilised 3D printed prostate models for simulation and training, and two publications (25%) used the models for patient engagement. Despite the nascency of the field, 3D printed models are emerging in the uro-oncological literature as a useful tool in visualising complex anatomy. This has proven useful in NS-RARP for preoperative planning, simulation and patient engagement. However, best practice guidelines, the future regulatory landscape, and health economic considerations need to be addressed before this synergy of new technologies is ready for the mainstream.
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    Zinc supplementation as an adjunct therapy for COVID-19: Challenges and opportunities
    Chinni, V ; El-Khoury, J ; Perera, M ; Bellomo, R ; Jones, D ; Bolton, D ; Ischia, J ; Patel, O (WILEY, 2021-06-02)
    An outbreak of a novel coronavirus (COVID-19 or 2019-CoV) infection has posed significant threats to international health and the economy. Patients with COVID-19 are at risk of cytokine storm, acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), reduced blood oxygenation, mechanical ventilation, and a high death rate. Although recent studies have shown remdesivir and dexamethasone as treatment options, there is an urgent need to find a treatment to inhibit virus replication and to control the progression of the disease. Essential biometal zinc has generated a lot of excitement as one of the promising candidates to reduce the severity of COVID-19 infection. Several published observations outlined in the review are the reasons why there is a global enthusiasm that zinc therapy could be a possible therapeutic option. However, the biggest challenge in realising the therapeutic value of zinc is lack of optimal treatment modalities such as dose, duration of zinc supplementation and the mode of delivery. In this review, we discuss the regulatory mechanism that hinges upon the bioavailability of zinc. Finally, we propose that intravenous zinc could circumvent the confounding factors affecting the bioavailability of zinc and allow zinc to achieve its therapeutic potential. If successful, due to advantages such as lack of toxicity, low cost and ease of availability, intravenous zinc could be rapidly implemented clinically.
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    A pilot double-blind safety and feasibility randomized controlled trial of high-dose intravenous zinc in hospitalized COVID-19 patients
    Patel, O ; Chinni, V ; El-Khoury, J ; Perera, M ; Neto, AS ; McDonald, C ; See, E ; Jones, D ; Bolton, D ; Bellomo, R ; Trubiano, J ; Ischia, J (WILEY, 2021-03-09)
    Zinc inhibits replication of the SARS-CoV virus. We aimed to evaluate the safety, feasibility, and biological effect of administering high-dose intravenous zinc (HDIVZn) to patients with COVID-19. We performed a Phase IIa double-blind, randomized controlled trial to compare HDIVZn to placebo in hospitalized patients with COVID-19. We administered trial treatment per day for a maximum of 7 days until either death or hospital discharge. We measured zinc concentration at baseline and during treatment and observed patients for any significant side effects. For eligible patients, we randomized and administered treatment to 33 adult participants to either HDIVZn (n = 15) or placebo (n = 18). We observed no serious adverse events throughout the study for a total of 94 HDIVZn administrations. However, three participants in the HDIVZn group reported infusion site irritation. Mean serum zinc on Day 1 in the placebo, and the HDIVZn group was 6.9 ± 1.1 and 7.7 ± 1.6 µmol/l, respectively, consistent with zinc deficiency. HDIVZn, but not placebo, increased serum zinc levels above the deficiency cutoff of 10.7 µmol/l (p < .001) on Day 6. Our study did not reach its target enrollment because stringent public health measures markedly reduced patient hospitalizations. Hospitalized COVID-19 patients demonstrated zinc deficiency. This can be corrected with HDIVZn. Such treatment appears safe, feasible, and only associated with minimal peripheral infusion site irritation. This pilot study justifies further investigation of this treatment in COVID-19 patients.
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    Zinc Preconditioning Provides Cytoprotection following Iodinated Contrast Media Exposure in In Vitro Models
    Perera, M ; Ischia, J ; Bolton, D ; Shulkes, A ; Baldwin, GS ; Patel, O ; de Barros, ALB (WILEY-HINDAWI, 2021-02-17)
    Methods: Normal human proximal renal kidney cells (HK-2) were preconditioned with either increasing doses of ZnCl2 or control. Following this preconditioning, cells were exposed to increasing concentrations of Iohexol 300 mg I2/ml for four hours. Key outcome measures included cell survival (MTT colorimetric assay) and ROS generation (H2DCFDA fluorescence assay). Results: Contrast media induced a dose-dependent reduction in survival of HK-2 cells. Compared to control, contrast media at 150, 225, and 300 mg I2/ml resulted in 69.5% (SD 8.8%), 37.3% (SD 4.8%), and 4.8% (SD 6.6%) cell survival, respectively (p < 0.001). Preconditioning with 37.5 μM and 50 μM ZnCl2 increased cell survival by 173% (SD 27.8%) (p < 0.001) and 219% (SD 32.2%) (p < 0.001), respectively, compared to control preconditioning. Zinc preconditioning resulted in a reduction of ROS generation. Zinc pre-conditioning with 37.5 μM μM ZnCl2 reduced ROS generation by 46% (p < 0.001) compared to control pre-conditioning. Conclusions: Zinc preconditioning reduces oxidative stress following exposure to radiographic contrast media which in turn results in increased survival of renal cells. Translation of this in vitro finding in animal models will lay the foundation for future use of zinc preconditioning against contrast induced nephropathy.
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    Randomised controlled trial for high-dose intravenous zinc as adjunctive therapy in SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) positive critically ill patients: trial protocol
    Perera, M ; El Khoury, J ; Chinni, V ; Bolton, D ; Qu, L ; Johnson, P ; Trubiano, J ; McDonald, CF ; Jones, D ; Bellomo, R ; Patel, O ; Ischia, J (BMJ PUBLISHING GROUP, 2020-01-01)
    INTRODUCTION: SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) has caused an international pandemic of respiratory illness, resulting in significant healthcare and economic turmoil. To date, no robust vaccine or treatment has been identified. Elemental zinc has previously been demonstrated to have beneficial effects on coronaviruses and other viral respiratory infections due to its effect on RNA polymerase. Additionally, zinc has well-demonstrated protective effects against hypoxic injury-a clear mechanism of end-organ injury in respiratory distress syndrome. We aimed to assess the effect of high-dose intravenous zinc (HDIVZn) on SARS-CoV-2 infection. The end of study analyses will evaluate the reduction of impact of oxygen saturations or requirement of oxygen supplementation. METHODS AND ANALYSIS: We designed a double-blind randomised controlled trial of daily HDIVZn (0.5 mg/kg) versus placebo. Primary outcome measures are lowest oxygen saturation (or greatest level of supplemental oxygenation) for non-ventilated patients and worst PaO2/FiO2 for ventilated patients. Following power calculations, 60 hospitalised patients and 100 ventilated patients will be recruited to demonstrate a 20% difference. The duration of follow-up is up to the point of discharge. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: Ethical approval was obtained through the independent Human Research Ethics Committee. Participant recruitment will commence in May 2020. Results will be published in peer-reviewed medical journals. TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: ACTRN126200000454976.
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    Experimental rat models for contrast-induced nephropathy; A comprehensive review
    Perera, M ; Ischia, J ; Bolton, D ; Shulkes, A ; Baldwin, GS ; Patel, O (Society of Diabetic Nephropathy Prevention, 2020-04-01)
    Contrast-induced nephropathy (CIN) is an iatrogenic disease caused by the parenteral administration of iodinated contrast media (CM). A number of agents are currently being assessed to minimise or prevent CIN. Such agents are typically assessed using rat models. The aim of this study was to provide a comprehensive review of the rat models of CIN used in pre-clinical research. The MEDLINE, EMBASE, Web of Science and Cochrane databases were systematically searched. Articles reporting rat models of CIN were included for assessment. Study designs, contrast agents and outcome measures were assessed. Of the assessed studies, a majority report a requirement for pre-existing renal impairment prior to the administration of CM. Outcome measures are heterogenous between studies, but typically include assessment and quantification of serum biochemical markers, cellular oxidative stress and histopathological changes. The significant variation in methodology reported in the current literature highlights the lack of consensus. The use of a reliable pre-contrast insult appears critical to result in the development of contrast nephropathy. The use of acceptable outcome measures appears to include serum laboratory markers, quantification of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and objective histopathological outcomes.