Publications -- Vicki Nejtek

Permanent URI for this collection

This collection is limited to articles published under the terms of a creative commons license or other open access publishing agreement since 2016. It is not intended as a complete list of the author's works.


Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 4 of 4
  • Item
    Establishing Equivalent Aerobic Exercise Parameters Between Early-Stage Parkinson's Disease and Pink1 Knockout Rats
    (IOS Press, 2022-06-28) Salvatore, Michael F.; Soto, Isabel; Kasanga, Ella A.; James, Rachael; Shifflet, Marla K.; Doshier, Kirby; Little, Joel T.; John, Joshia; Alphonso, Helene M.; Cunningham, J. Thomas; Nejtek, Vicki A.
    BACKGROUND: Rodent Parkinson's disease (PD) models are valuable to interrogate neurobiological mechanisms of exercise that mitigate motor impairment. Translating these mechanisms to human PD must account for physical capabilities of the patient. OBJECTIVE: To establish cardiovascular parameters as a common metric for cross-species translation of aerobic exercise impact. METHOD: We evaluated aerobic exercise impact on heart rate (HR) in 21 early-stage PD subjects (Hoehn Yahr /=3 months, >/=3x/week. In 4-month-old Pink1 knockout (KO) rats exercising in a progressively-increased treadmill speed regimen, we determined a specific treadmill speed that increased HR to an extent similar in human subjects. RESULTS: After completing aerobic exercise for approximately 30 min, PD subjects had increased HR approximately 35% above baseline ( approximately 63% maximum HR). Motor and cognitive test results indicated the exercising subjects completed the timed up and go (TUG) and trail-making test (TMT-A) in significantly less time versus exercise-naive PD subjects. In KO and age-matched wild-type (WT) rats, treadmill speeds of 8-10 m/min increased HR up to 25% above baseline ( approximately 67% maximum HR), with no further increases up to 16 m/min. Exercised KO, but not WT, rats showed increased locomotor activity compared to an age-matched exercise-naive cohort at 5 months old. CONCLUSION: These proof-of-concept results indicate HR is a cross-species translation parameter to evaluate aerobic exercise impact on specific motor or cognitive functions in human subjects and rat PD models. Moreover, a moderate intensity exercise regimen is within the physical abilities of early-stage PD patients and is therefore applicable for interrogating neurobiological mechanisms in rat PD models.
  • Item
    Aging-related limit of exercise efficacy on motor decline
    (PLOS, 2017-11-27) Arnold, Jennifer C.; Cantu, Mark A.; Kasanga, Ella A.; Nejtek, Vicki A.; Papa, Evan V.; Bugnariu, Nicoleta; Salvatore, Michael F.
    Identifying lifestyle strategies and allied neurobiological mechanisms that reduce aging-related motor impairment is imperative, given the accelerating number of retirees and increased life expectancy. A physically active lifestyle prior to old age can reduce risk of debilitating motor decline. However, if exercise is initiated after motor decline has begun in the lifespan, it is unknown if aging itself may impose a limit on exercise efficacy to decelerate further aging-related motor decline. In Brown-Norway/Fischer 344 F1 hybrid (BNF) rats, locomotor activity begins to decrease in middle age (12-18 months). One mechanism of aging-related motor decline may be decreased expression of GDNF family receptor, GFRalpha-1, which is decreased in substantia nigra (SN) between 12 and 30 months old. Moderate exercise, beginning at 18 months old, increases nigral GFRalpha-1 and tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) expression within 2 months. In aged rats, replenishing aging-related loss of GFRalpha-1 in SN increases TH in SN alone and locomotor activity. A moderate exercise regimen was initiated in sedentary male BNF rats in a longitudinal study to evaluate if exercise could attenuate aging-related motor decline when initiated at two different ages in the latter half of the lifespan (18 or 24 months old). Motor decline was reversed in the 18-, but not 24-month-old, cohort. However, exercise efficacy in the 18-month-old group was reduced as the rats reached 27 months old. GFRalpha-1 expression was not increased in either cohort. These studies suggest exercise can decelerate motor decline when begun in the latter half of the lifespan, but its efficacy may be limited by age of initiation. Decreased plasticity of GFRalpha-1 expression following exercise may limit its efficacy to reverse motor decline.
  • Item
    Roles of disease severity and post-discharge outpatient visits as predictors of hospital readmissions
    (BioMed Central Ltd., 2016-10-10) Wang, Hao; Johnson, Carol; Robinson, Richard D.; Nejtek, Vicki A.; Schrader, Chet D.; Leuck, JoAnna; Umejiego, Johnbosco; Trop, Allison; Delaney, Kathleen A.; Zenarosa, Nestor R.
    BACKGROUND: Risks prediction models of 30-day all-cause hospital readmissions are multi-factorial. Severity of illness (SOI) and risk of mortality (ROM) categorized by All Patient Refined Diagnosis Related Groups (APR-DRG) seem to predict hospital readmission but lack large sample validation. Effects of risk reduction interventions including providing post-discharge outpatient visits remain uncertain. We aim to determine the accuracy of using SOI and ROM to predict readmission and further investigate the role of outpatient visits in association with hospital readmission. METHODS: Hospital readmission data were reviewed retrospectively from September 2012 through June 2015. Patient demographics and clinical variables including insurance type, homeless status, substance abuse, psychiatric problems, length of stay, SOI, ROM, ICD-10 diagnoses and medications prescribed at discharge, and prescription ratio at discharge (number of medications prescribed divided by number of ICD-10 diagnoses) were analyzed using logistic regression. Relationships among SOI, type of hospital visits, time between hospital visits, and readmissions were also investigated. RESULTS: A total of 6011 readmissions occurred from 55,532 index admissions. The adjusted odds ratios of SOI and ROM predicting readmissions were 1.31 (SOI: 95 % CI 1.25-1.38) and 1.09 (ROM: 95 % CI 1.05-1.14) separately. Ninety percent (5381/6011) of patients were readmitted from the Emergency Department (ED) or Urgent Care Center (UCC). Average time interval from index discharge date to ED/UCC visit was 9 days in both the no readmission and readmission groups (p > 0.05). Similar hospital readmission rates were noted during the first 10 days from index discharge regardless of whether post-index discharge patient clinic visits occurred when time-to-event analysis was performed. CONCLUSIONS: SOI and ROM significantly predict hospital readmission risk in general. Most readmissions occurred among patients presenting for ED/UCC visits after index discharge. Simply providing early post-discharge follow-up clinic visits does not seem to prevent hospital readmissions.
  • Item
    Is there a Neurobiological Rationale for the Utility of the Iowa Gambling Task in Parkinson's Disease?
    (IOS Press, 2021-04-13) Salvatore, Michael F.; Soto, Isabel; Alphonso, Helene M.; Cunningham, Rebecca L.; James, Rachael; Nejtek, Vicki A.
    Up to 23% of newly diagnosed, non-demented, Parkinson's disease (PD) patients experience deficits in executive functioning (EF). In fact, EF deficits may occur up to 39-months prior to the onset of motor decline. Optimal EF requires working memory, attention, cognitive flexibility, and response inhibition underlying appropriate decision-making. The capacity for making strategic decisions requires inhibiting imprudent decisions and are associated with noradrenergic and dopaminergic signaling in prefrontal and orbitofrontal cortex. Catecholaminergic dysfunction and the loss of noradrenergic and dopaminergic cell bodies early in PD progression in the aforementioned cortical areas likely contribute to EF deficits resulting in non-strategic decision-making. Thus, detecting these deficits early in the disease process could help identify a significant portion of individuals with PD pathology (14-60%) before frank motor impairment. A task to evaluate EF in the domain of non-strategic decision-making might be useful to indicate the moderate loss of catecholamines that occurs early in PD pathology prior to motor decline and cognitive impairment. In this review, we focus on the potential utility of the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT) for this purpose, given significant overlap between in loss of dopaminergic and noradrenergic cells bodies in early PD and the deficits in catecholamine function associated with decreased EF. As such, given the loss of catecholamines already well-underway after PD diagnosis, we evaluate the potential utility of the IGT to identify the risk of therapeutic non-compliance and a potential companion approach to detect PD in premotor stages.