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IFCC Professional Scientific Exchange Programme (PSEP) Reports

PSEP at Dr. Hugo Mendieta Zerón Laboratory  - Centro de Investigación en Ciencias Médicas CICMED, Centro de Investigación en Química Sustentable - Universidad Autónoma del Estado de México, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México - Toluca- México

by Mr. Cristian Layton Bacteriologist - Colegio Mayor de Cundinamarca University
National of Bacteriology Colleague - Bogotá D.C, Colombia

México- December, 2012


President International Federation of Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine (IFCC)

First of all I would like to express my deepest gratitude to the IFCC Professional Scientific Exchange Programme (PSEP) for having given me the opportunity to take part in this experience. I was very proud and excited when I received news that my application was accepted to attend the programme in Research in Sustainable Chemistry Center (CIQS) of the National Autonomous of Mexico University (UNAM) and Autonomous of State of México University (UAEMEX).

It has been an important experience for my professional curriculum; I obtained answers to many long-standing questions in Clinical chemistry. I evaluated antimitotic properties of the molecules obtained by organic synthesis in cell lines models and analyzed the intracellular signaling mechanism"Advanced training in technical evaluation of molecules with antimitotic properties obtained by organic synthesis in cell culture models".It also offered me the possibility to meet colleagues from many countries and to discuss with them different subjects in Clinical chemistry and share our respective experiences in research.

The CIQS of the UNAM and CICMED of the UAEMEX are institutions engaged in the various processes that require interaction across sectors and sustainable set of institutions involved in the development of drug treatments, insurance, scientific and research potential in Latin America and continue the development of methodologies and organic molecules that represent a solution to the current problems of resistance and decrease in the effectiveness of conventional treatments.

The results of this project are going to contribute to the research and to establishing measures in  Public Health. The IFCC support has certainly been essential in the acquisition of new knowledge and learning.

Best regards,

Cristian Layton
Bacteriologist- Colegio Mayor de Cundinamarca University
National of Bacteriology Colleague
Bogotá D.C, Colombia

Complementary activities: Congress and Conferences

10th International Congress on Adolescent Health, University of the State of Mexico, SIEA, CICMED, Deusto University, National Institute of Psychiatry and School of Behavioral Sciences, Toluca, Mexico, November 5,6 and 7, 2012

1st Symposium Student and Clinical Laboratory Professionals Mexico State, University of the State of Mexico, Professionals Association of Clinical Laboratory of the State of Mexico, AC and the National Federation of Clinical Chemists, CONAQUIC, AC, Toluca, Mexico, November 11, 2012.

2nd Contest of Biochemistry Research, State Autonomous University of Mexico, School of Medicine, Toluca, Mexico, November 16, 2012.

Keynote - Cellular Reprogramming: induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS) Introducing LXI work with current issues in the clinical laboratory, Professionals Association of Clinical Laboratory of the State of Mexico, Mexico, October 25, 2012

Support activities carried out under the project:

"SOCS-3, JAK-2/STAT3, leptin and adiponectin detection in breast cancer"

Activities of search and literature review;

Reviewing inserts for determination of leptin and adiponectin through kits: "Human Adiponectin ELISA" and "96 Test ELISA Human Leptin" commercial household Genway blood sample project attached to breast cancer.

Laboratory of Human Genetics, Faculty of Medicine UAEM, Maternal Perinatal Hospital Pretelini Monica, Deputy Secretary of Health, Breast Cancer, CICMED Molecular Biology Laboratory, Department of Pathology (HMPMP).

Activities carried out between September and December 2012in the Laboratory of Molecular Biology Research Center of Medical Science and Research Centre in Sustainable Chemistry, development of advanced research projects, in which I have been supporting and receiving training Technical skills and methodological: Blood sampling, Information management, patient reception and treatment, Transport and storage of biopsy samples, Cell culture and in suspension by explants, genotyping of human papillomavirus, Spectrophotometric Quantification of Nano- and Standard-Volume Samples, Real time PCR


Dr. Graham Beastall
President, International Federation of Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine (IFCC)

Dr. Hugo Mendieta Zerón
Medical Research Center (CICMED), Autonomous University of the State of Mexico (UAEMex); Materno Perinatal Hospital "Monica Pretelini" (HMPMP); Asociación Científica Latina (ASCILA) and Ciprés Grupo Médico (CGM) Toluca, Mexico.

Dr. Erik Cuevas Yañez
Sustainable Chemistry Research Center (CIQS)Autonomous University of the State of Mexico (UAEMex), National Autonomous University of México (UNAM).

Cristian Layton 1Cristian Layton 2
Cristian LaytonCristian Layton and his colleagues at Dr. Hugo Mendieta Zerón Laboratory

PSEP at Professor Andrew McKie - Iron Metabolism Research Group - Kings College, London, United Kingdom

by Dr. Victor Manolov
Central Clinical Laboratory at Medical University "Alexandrovska" Hospital in Sofia, Bulgaria

I am working at Medical University's Hospital in Sofia. I am preparing my PhD work in the field of iron metabolism regulation and disorders. As a part of this I had a chance to visit the Iron Metabolism Group at the King's College London - to learn from the source of knowledge.

The scientific team I worked with are a co-discoverers of iron membrane transporters ferroportin and duodenal cytochrome B. Ferroportin is inhibited by hepcidin, which binds to ferroportin and internalizes it within the cell. This results in the retention of iron within cells, and a reduction in iron levels within the plasma. This is especially significant in enterocytes which are shed at the end of their lifespan. The extra iron retained within them is not only prevented from entering the bloodstream but ends up being excreted into the faeces. Hepcidin is thus the "master regulator" of human iron metabolism. This is part of the mechanism that causes anaemia of chronic disease; hepcidin is released from the liver in response to inflammatory cytokines, namely interleukin-6, which results in an increased hepcidin concentration and a consequent decrease in plasma iron levels. Dcytb has been identified as the mammalian transplasma ferric reductase that catalyzes the reduction of ferric to ferrous iron in the process of iron absorption. Its mRNA and protein levels are up-regulated by several independent stimulators of iron absorption. Furthermore, its cDNA encodes putative binding sites for heme and ascorbic acid. Using Northern and Western blots, RT-PCR and confocal microscopy the expression and localisation of Dcytb in cell lines and tissues of CD1 mice was studied. Dcytb expression and function were modulated by iron. Dcytb and DMT1, both predominantly localised in the apical region of the duodenum were up-regulated in iron deficiency. Dcytb, the iron regulated ferric reductase may also utilize cytoplasmic ascorbate as electron donor for transmembrane reduction of iron. Dcytb expression was found in other tissues apart from the duodenum and its regulation and functions at these other sites are of interest in iron metabolism.

My reception at the Iron Metabolism Group at King's College London was warm and the support provided by Prof. Andrew McKie and Dr. G.O. Latunde-Dada enabled me to feel at home quickly. In spite of their daily work with students and postgraduates they shared with me their experience from department of Diabetes and Nutritional Sciences. During the PSEP programme visiting the Iron Metabolism Group at King's College London and with reference to the project topic, I used new and highly specific techniques such as extraction of RNA and protein, synthesis of cDNA. Protein quantification, ferric-reductase assay, nanodrop techniques and densitometric evaluation of results were used for the characterization of K 562 cells. In order to complete the study I was taught to perform PCR, qPCR and Western Blot analyses; techniques which I will be able to use in my future work at Medical University in Sofia, Bulgaria, which is a part of my PhD work.

Mrs. Ester Lee, with Prof. McKie's support, arranged a visit to Kings College Hospital laboratory, where Dr. Sherwood showed me their new integrated system and shared his experience managing 450 staff.


I am grateful and indebted to IFCC for approving and supporting my application, especially to the Current President Dr. Graham Beastall. I want to thank to Mrs. Colli-Lanzi for her help through my IFCC communication. I extend my heartfelt gratitude to Prof. Andrew McKie and Dr. G.O. Latunde-Dada for hosting me and allowing me to access the Iron Metabolism Group knowledge and for also planning my project. I am also grateful to Mrs. Ester Lee for her help in making me feel at home in London. Also, thanks to Mrs. Vicky Clark from Kings College Hospital WEC reception for her support during my London visit. Thanks to Dr. Joe Varghese and Dr. Neeta Patel from Prof. McKie's group for their assistance throughout my visit and laboratory work at Kings. I also acknowledge Dr. Roy Sherwood from Kings College Hospital Laboratory and Dr. Sukhi Bansal for their time and shared work experiences. Finally, I would like to thank Prof. Kamen Tzatchev and Bisera Atanasova from Medical University "Alexandrovska" Hospital, Sofia, Bulgaria for their support.

I would be glad to have another chance to visit Kings College London to continue my scientific project, as part of Prof. McKie's Iron Metabolism Group.

Dr . Manolov And Dr . Latunde -DadaDr Manolov and Dr Latunde-Dada

Dr V. Manolov and Dr Joe Varghese.pngDr Manolov and Dr Joe Vargese

PSEP at Department of Clinical chemistry, Gent University (Belgium)

Catholic University of Bukavu, Department of Laboratory Medicine, DRCongo

Affordable diabetes diagnosis in Central Africa

Being awarded the IFCC Professional Scientific Exchange Program scholarship, I had the opportunity to visit the Department of Clinical Chemistry, Gent University for three months, from 21 September to 21 December 2012. The main purpose of my visit was focused on affordable diabetes diagnosis in developing countries. Diabetes is a major health and socioeconomic challenges in sub Saharan Africa. The prevalence of the disease is increasing in Africa owing principally to ageing and urbanization of population. The projected prevalence growth for sub-Saharan Africa is 98%, from 12.1 million in 2010 to 23.9 million in 2030. Our project was aimed at developing affordable diagnosis of diabetes based on the serum fructosamine assay and assaying glycated keratin in finger nails. In Central Africa, diagnosis is still limited to blood level glucose measurements because of the poverty of population and precariousness of the healthcare system. The reduced cost, simplicity and the lesser preanalytical requirements are major advantages and may give hope in diabetic populations from developing countries, particularly in DRCongo. Furthermore, as in Africa,  since haemoglobinopaties disorders account for more than 70% of total haemoglobinopathies in the world, this method presents an advantage of to be not affected by haemoglobin abnormalities .

In spite of the development of manual method of diagnosis diabetes was our main purpose. I have learnt more about automated methods based on fructosamine assay and glycated hemoglobin A1C, which permitted us to make a comparison on practicability and the cost of these methods in developing countries. I received theoretical and practical training about the process of glycation and deglycation which would explain some pathologic situations.

I also had the opportunity to participate in the "African platform congress" organized by Gent University (Dec 7, 2012), in which I presented a poster of our research and also the results explaining diabetes mellitus as the correlation of ferroportin Q248JH mutation in Bantu population and iron overload bio-availability in South Kivu ( DRCongo). There was a moment to exchange experiences with other researchers from developing countries.

I am grateful to the International Federation of Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine for the financial support during my stay. Professor J. Delanghe, chief of Clinical Chemistry laboratory, has spent more useful time with us in the laboratory. I thank him so much for his personal contributions to my formation (photo 3). It is a pleasure to thank the staff of clinical chemistry laboratory for his kindness and technical support which facilitated my integration into this laboratory.

Initially, we developed an affordable method based on fructosamine determination in serum. This assay has included 236 diabetic and non diabetic patients from DRCongo. Fructosamine in the serum reacted well with NBT reagent forming a Schiff base, which was read spectrophotometrically at 530nm. Subsequently, commercial fructosamine assay was transferred to an automated analyzer . The correlation between the two methods ranged around 0,906 ( P <0,001). No significant analytical interference due to uric acid and  triglycerides were observed.

Secondly, our research focused on exploring the diagnostic possibilities of determination of glycated keratins in finger nails:215 samples of clipped nails (99 diabetics, 116 non diabetic controls) .In Africa, there is an important threshold vs. preservation of blood. Therefore, analysing glycated keratins in nails could offer a psychologically more acceptable alternative for diagnosing diabetes. Glycated keratin reacted with NBT reagent. Results were expressed as mmmol of glycated keratin /mg of nails. A t student test showed discrimination between diabetics and non diabetics (fig1). The receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve revealed a specificity of 93% and a sensitivity of 65% ,with an area under curve of 0.801.

Slide Kishabongo

Because of their simplicity and his reduced cost, both methods may contribute to improvement of diabetes monitoring in developing countries.

The visit to the laboratory of clinical chemistry of Gent University was beneficial not only for us but for African populations because the development of the methods of diagnosis diabetes mellitus will be applied in African countries. .Fructosamine assay in serum will be implemented in the near future in the clinical chemistry lab at the Bukavu university hospital (South Kivu, DRC) as the equipment has recently become available. Implementing the new assays will contribute to a better diabetes detection and treatment.

Antoine Sadiki 1.JPG

A. Sadiki working in laboratory of Clinical Chemistry, Gent University Hospital

Antoine Sadiki 2.JPG

A. Sadiki in Laboratory of Clinical Chemistry, Gent University Hospital

Antoine Sadiki 3.JPG

Professor J. Delanghe discussing with A.Sadiki in laboratory of Clinical Chemistry,Gent University Hospital

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