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Childhood maltreatment (CM) plays an important role in the development of major depressive disorder (MDD). The aim of this study was to examine whether CM severity and type are associated with MDD-related brain alterations, and how they interact with sex and age.
Within the ENIGMA-MDD network, severity and subtypes of CM using the Childhood Trauma Questionnaire were assessed and structural magnetic resonance imaging data from patients with MDD and healthy controls were analyzed in a mega-analysis comprising a total of 3872 participants aged between 13 and 89 years. Cortical thickness and surface area were extracted at each site using FreeSurfer.
CM severity was associated with reduced cortical thickness in the banks of the superior temporal sulcus and supramarginal gyrus as well as with reduced surface area of the middle temporal lobe. Participants reporting both childhood neglect and abuse had a lower cortical thickness in the inferior parietal lobe, middle temporal lobe, and precuneus compared to participants not exposed to CM. In males only, regardless of diagnosis, CM severity was associated with higher cortical thickness of the rostral anterior cingulate cortex. Finally, a significant interaction between CM and age in predicting thickness was seen across several prefrontal, temporal, and temporo-parietal regions.
Severity and type of CM may impact cortical thickness and surface area. Importantly, CM may influence age-dependent brain maturation, particularly in regions related to the default mode network, perception, and theory of mind.
In vitro techniques have been developed to facilitate the measurement of nutritional variability amongst food. Many kinetic studies have utilized the modified Tilley and Terry technique, with long-term incubations carried out in Erlenmeyer flasks. These are inefficient in utilizing incubator space for large scale studies. However substitution of Erlenmeyer flasks with tubes as fermentation units leaves the system prone to ‘bridging’, the formation of dense mats of forage particles by entrapped gas, above the level of the media in a fermentation unit. The objective of experiment 1 was to establish an effective incubation technique to eliminate the random variation caused by bridging.
The provision of psychological support to caregivers is an important part of the role of the clinical staff working in palliative care. Staff knowledge and attitudes may determine their openness to referring caregivers to a psychological intervention. We recently developed a self-help intervention for grief and psychological distress among caregivers and were interested in exploring the extent to which staff knowledge and attitudes might affect future implementation. The aims of our study were to: (1) examine the acceptability of self-help psychological intervention for caregivers among palliative care clinical staff; (2) examine potential attitudinal barriers toward prolonged grief disorder (PGD) as a diagnosis and interventions for grief; and (3) bolster staff confidence in skills and knowledge in identifying and managing caregiver psychological distress.
An anonymous survey was distributed among clinical staff at two inpatient units and two community health services that assessed the acceptability of self-help interventions for caregivers, attitudes about PGD diagnosis and grief intervention, and staff confidence in skills and knowledge in assessing caregiver psychological distress.
Overall, clinical staff were positively oriented toward self-help for caregivers and intervention for grief. They were also basically confident in their skills and knowledge. While it was positive PGD attitudes that were associated with acceptability of self-help for caregivers, it was both positive and negative PGD attitudes that were associated more specifically with a willingness to refer caregivers to such an intervention.
Significance of results:
Our findings are useful in highlighting the issues to be considered in the implementation of a self-help intervention within the healthcare service. Clinical staff seemed positively oriented toward engaging with a psychological intervention for caregivers and likely to act as key allies in implementation.
Introduction: Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common sustained arrhythmia affecting 1-2% of the population. Oral anticoagulation (OAC) reduces stroke risk by 60-80% in AF patients, but only 50% of indicated patients receive OAC. Many patients present to the ED with AF due to arrhythmia symptoms, however; lack of OAC prescription in the ED has been identified as a significant gap in the care of AF patients. Methods: This was a multi-center, pragmatic, three-phase before-after study, in three Canadian sites. Patients who presented to the ED with electrocardiographically (ECG) documented, nonvalvular AF and were discharged home were included. Phase 1 was a retrospective chart review to determine OAC prescription of AF patients in each ED; Phase 2 was a low-intensity knowledge translation intervention where a simple OAC-prescription tool for ED physicians with subsequent short-term OAC prescription was used, as well as an AF patient education package and a letter to family physicians; phase 3 incorporated Phase 2 interventions, but added immediate follow-up in a community AF clinic. The primary outcome of the study was the rate of new OAC prescriptions at ED discharge in AF patients who were OAC eligible and were not on OAC at presentation. Results: A total of 632 patients were included from June, 2015-November, 2016. ED census ranged from 30000-68000 annual visits. Mean age was 71±15, 67±12, 67±13 years, respectively. 47.5% were women, most responsible ED diagnosis was AF in 75.8%. The mean CHA2DS2-VASc score was 2.6±1.8, with no difference amongst groups. There were 266 patients eligible for OAC and were not on this at presentation. In this group, the prescription of new OAC was 15.8% in Phase 1 as compared to 54% and 47%, in Phases 2 and 3, respectively. After adjustment for center, components of the CHA2DS2-VASc score, prior risk of bleeding and most responsible ED diagnosis, the odds ratio for new OAC prescription was 8.0 (95%CI (3.5,18.3) p<0.001) for Phase 3 vs 1, and 10.0 (95%CI (4.4,22.9) p<0.001), for Phase 2 vs 1). No difference in OAC prescription was seen between Phases 2 and 3. Conclusion: Use of a simple OAC-prescription tool was associated with an increase in new OAC prescription in the ED for eligible patients with AF. Further testing in a rigorous study design to assess the effect of this practice on stroke prevention in the AF patients who present to the ED is indicated.
Introduction: Point of care ultrasound (PoCUS) has become an established tool in the initial management of patients with undifferentiated hypotension in the emergency department (ED). Current established protocols (e.g. RUSH and ACES) were developed by expert user opinion, rather than objective, prospective data. Recently the SHoC Protocol was published, recommending 3 core scans; cardiac, lung, and IVC; plus other scans when indicated clinically. We report the abnormal ultrasound findings from our international multicenter randomized controlled trial, to assess if the recommended 3 core SHoC protocol scans were chosen appropriately for this population. Methods: Recruitment occurred at seven centres in North America (4) and South Africa (3). Screening at triage identified patients (SBP<100 or shock index>1) who were randomized to PoCUS or control (standard care with no PoCUS) groups. All scans were performed by PoCUS-trained physicians within one hour of arrival in the ED. Demographics, clinical details and study findings were collected prospectively. A threshold incidence for positive findings of 10% was established as significant for the purposes of assessing the appropriateness of the core recommendations. Results: 138 patients had a PoCUS screen completed. All patients had cardiac, lung, IVC, aorta, abdominal, and pelvic scans. Reported abnormal findings included hyperdynamic LV function (59; 43%); small collapsing IVC (46; 33%); pericardial effusion (24; 17%); pleural fluid (19; 14%); hypodynamic LV function (15; 11%); large poorly collapsing IVC (13; 9%); peritoneal fluid (13; 9%); and aortic aneurysm (5; 4%). Conclusion: The 3 core SHoC Protocol recommendations included appropriate scans to detect all pathologies recorded at a rate of greater than 10 percent. The 3 most frequent findings were cardiac and IVC abnormalities, followed by lung. It is noted that peritoneal fluid was seen at a rate of 9%. Aortic aneurysms were rare. This data from the first RCT to compare PoCUS to standard care for undifferentiated hypotensive ED patients, supports the use of the prioritized SHoC protocol, though a larger study is required to confirm these findings.
Background: Epileptic encephalopathy (EE) is a severe condition in which epileptic activity itself may contribute to severe cognitive and behavioural impairments above and beyond what might be expected from the underlying pathology alone. Next generation sequencing technologies such as whole exome sequencing (WES) can detect underlying genetic causes of in EE. Methods: This report describes genotype-phenotype correlation of 29 subjects with unexplained epileptic encephalopathy, in whom WES, targeting a list of 557 epilepsy-associated genes was performed. Epilepsy phenotyping was done according to current ILAE recommendations. Results: Median age at seizure onset was 14 months (range 1-48). Electroclinical syndromes were applicable for 16/29, 8/16 had a definite/likely diagnosis. 6/8 subjects with West syndrome had variants in ALG13, STXBP1, PAFAH1B1, SLC35A2, CDKL5 and ADSL. 2 patients with Dravet syndrome had variants in SCN1A and PCDH19 respectively. 4/29 had unspecified EE and definite/likely diagnosis due to STXBP1, POLG, and KCNQ2 (2) variants. 4/29 had a possible diagnosis involving GABRB3, ARHGEF9, PCDH19 and SCN3A variants. Conclusions: The high diagnostic yield (definite/likely diagnosis in 11/29 = 38%), involving a broad variety of epilepsy-associated genes in different electroclinical syndromes justifies the diagnostic approach of early onset EE by next generation sequencing.
Introduction: Point of care ultrasound has become an established tool in the initial management of patients with undifferentiated hypotension. Current established protocols (RUSH, ACES, etc) were developed by expert user opinion, rather than objective, prospective data. We wished to use reported disease incidence to develop an informed approach to PoCUS in hypotension using a “4 F’s” approach: Fluid; Form; Function; Filling. Methods: We summarized the incidence of PoCUS findings from an international multicentre RCT, and using a modified Delphi approach incorporating this data we obtained the input of 24 international experts associated with five professional organizations led by the International Federation of Emergency Medicine. The modified Delphi tool was developed to reach an international consensus on how to integrate PoCUS for hypotensive emergency department patients. Results: Rates of abnormal PoCUS findings from 151 patients with undifferentiated hypotension included left ventricular dynamic changes (43%), IVC abnormalities (27%), pericardial effusion (16%), and pleural fluid (8%). Abdominal pathology was rare (fluid 5%, AAA 2%). After two rounds of the survey, using majority consensus, agreement was reached on a SHoC-hypotension protocol comprising: A. Core: 1. Cardiac views (Sub-xiphoid and parasternal windows for pericardial fluid, cardiac form and ventricular function); 2. Lung views for pleural fluid and B-lines for filling status; and 3. IVC views for filling status; B. Supplementary: Additional cardiac views; and C. Additional views (when indicated) including peritoneal fluid, aorta, pelvic for IUP, and proximal leg veins for DVT. Conclusion: An international consensus process based on prospectively collected disease incidence has led to a proposed SHoC-hypotension PoCUS protocol comprising a stepwise clinical-indication based approach of Core, Supplementary and Additional PoCUS views.
Introduction: Point of care ultrasound (PoCUS) provides invaluable information during resuscitation efforts in cardiac arrest by determining presence/absence of cardiac activity and identifying reversible causes such as pericardial tamponade. There is no agreed guideline on how to safely and effectively incorporate PoCUS into the advanced cardiac life support (ACLS) algorithm. We consider that a consensus-based priority checklist using a “4 F’s” approach (Fluid; Form; Function; Filling), would provide a better algorithm during ACLS. Methods: The ultrasound subcommittee of the Australasian College for Emergency Medicine (ACEM) drafted a checklist incorporating PoCUS into the ACLS algorithm. This was further developed using the input of 24 international experts associated with five professional organizations led by the International Federation of Emergency Medicine. A modified Delphi tool was developed to reach an international consensus on how to integrate ultrasound into cardiac arrest algorithms for emergency department patients. Results: Consensus was reached following 3 rounds. The agreed protocol focuses on the timing of PoCUS as well as the specific clinical questions. Core cardiac windows performed during the rhythm check pause in chest compressions are the sub-xiphoid and parasternal cardiac views. Either view should be used to detect pericardial fluid, as well as examining ventricular form (e.g. right heart strain) and function, (e.g. asystole versus organized cardiac activity). Supplementary views include lung views (for absent lung sliding in pneumothorax and for pleural fluid), and IVC views for filling. Additional ultrasound applications are for endotracheal tube confirmation, proximal leg veins for DVT, or for sources of blood loss (AAA, peritoneal/pelvic fluid). Conclusion: The authors hope that this process will lead to a consensus-based SHoC-cardiac arrest guideline on incorporating PoCUS into the ACLS algorithm.
I wonder whether we have not heard just a little too much of the secular element in functionalist theories as explanations of spiritual power at work within society. For while it is important to understand exactly how such power does its job, it does seem of equal if not far greater importance not to lose sight of its origins. Edward Thompson, for example, has presented a now often quoted summary of the virtues of the nineteenth century Catholic priest amongst the Irish poor of the ghetto. ...... ‘the only authority to whom the Irish labourers showed any deference; poorer; closer to the peasantry; literate but not far removed in class; free from identification with English employers; knowing the Gaelic, he brought news of home and .... relations and could be entrusted with remittances or messages.’ Is this why the priest held a place of honour in folk society, because he could be entrusted with anything from banking to pig keeping? Does it not seem odd that Thompson did not trouble to ask himself what the priest, a representative of everything ‘wholly other’, was doing in the slum in the first place? Had he done so I think he would have found that it was not by being spokesman for the evolutionary social services he held his power, but rather because he was, and instinctively was understood to be an objective bearer of holiness.
The history of the feed industry is pertinent in terms of understanding how and why certain practices have evolved. Some of these practices have been superseded by modern, more natural alternatives, for example the traditional use of antibiotics in feed. In other cases, such as inorganic minerals, more natural versions akin to those found in plant and animal materials are available, although these new initiatives are still being taken up globally. Research continues to increase our knowledge and understanding of nutrient balance and digestion, and in some species this is more advanced than others. The following paper represents the first complete history of the feed industry, its major milestones, and projects how it might continue to utilise new technology developments to improve animal feeding practices.
The increased demand for animal-derived protein and energy for human consumption will have to be achieved through a combination of improved animal genetic merit and better management strategies. The objective of the present study was to quantify whether differences in genetic merit among animals materialised into phenotypic differences in commercial herds. Carcass phenotypes on 156 864 animals from 7301 finishing herds were used, which included carcass weight (kg), carcass conformation score (scale 1 to 15), carcass fat score (scale 1 to 15) at slaughter as well as carcass price. The price per kilogram and the total carcass value that the producer received for the animal at slaughter was also used. A terminal index, calculated in the national genetic evaluations, was obtained for each animal. The index was based on pedigree index for calving performance, feed intake and carcass traits from the national genetic evaluations. Animals were categorised into four terminal index groups on the basis of genetic merit estimates that were derived before the expression of the phenotypic information by the validation animals. The association between terminal index and phenotypic performance at slaughter was undertaken using mixed models; whether the association differed by gender (i.e. young bulls, steers and heifers) or by early life experiences (animals born in a dairy herd or beef herd) was also investigated. The regression coefficient of phenotypic carcass weight, carcass conformation and carcass fat on their respective estimated breeding values (EBVs) was 0.92 kg, 1.08 units and 0.79 units, respectively, which is close to the expectation of one. Relative to animals in the lowest genetic merit group, animals in the highest genetic merit group had, on average, a 38.7 kg heavier carcass, with 2.21 units greater carcass conformation, and 0.82 units less fat. The superior genetic merit animals were, on average, slaughtered 6 days younger than their inferior genetic merit contemporaries. The superior carcass characteristics of the genetically elite animals materialised in carcasses worth €187 more than those of the lowest genetic merit animals. Although the phenotypic difference in carcass traits of animals divergent in terminal index differed statistically by animal gender and early life experience, the detected interactions were generally biologically small. This study clearly indicates that selection on an appropriate terminal index will produce higher performing animals and this was consistent across all production systems investigated.
Mannan-oligosaccharides (MOS), as zootechnical feed ingredients, are widely used in animal nutrition. MOS has been commercially available since the launch of Bio-Mos® in the early 1990's and has a substantial body of scientific papers and practical examples of its efficacy. Since 1999, the use of MOS in animal feed has become more prominent, mainly due to the European ban on prophylactic antibiotic growth promoters in animal feed. MOS, with its ability to bind and limit the colonisation of gut pathogens, has proven to be an effective solution for antibiotic-free diets, as well as providing support for immunity and digestion. MOS has been shown to improve gastrointestinal health, thus improving wellbeing, energy levels and performance. Most MOS products, particularly those that have been scientifically developed, derive from the cell wall of the yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae. In 2009, a mannose-rich fraction (MRF) product was commercially launched as a ‘second generation’ of these MOS-type products, with enhanced activities in immune modulation and intestinal health. The purpose of this paper is to review the existing data on the benefits of MOS for all species of animals, discuss its mechanisms of action in vivo and compare the benefits of using second generation MRF to original MOS.
Background: Epilepsy occurs in up to 90% of patients with Tuberous Sclerosis Complex (TSC) and is often refractory to medications. Our objective was to assess the safety and outcome of epilepsy surgery in children with TSC at our institution. Methods: We performed a systematic, retrospective chart review of children with TSC who underwent epilepsy surgery at our institution. Patients were identified through epilepsy and clinical neurophysiology databases. Results: 19 patients (out of 81 with TSC) underwent surgery between 1995-2014. Median age at surgery was 4.2 (Range 1.1-15.6) years, with patients having failed a median 4 (Range 0-10) anti-seizure medications. Surgery comprised corpus callosotomy in 2 and resection of one or more tubers in 17. 2 patients had a subsequent second resection. Minor neurologic deficits occurred after 14% of surgeries. Median follow-up was 2.4 years (Range 0.3 -13.8 years) following surgery . At last follow-up, 47% were seizure free, including 2 patients off anti-seizure medication. Conclusions: Epilepsy surgery is safe and effective in carefully selected TSC patients, with the majority having a good seizure outcome. Children with epilepsy secondary to TSC should be referred for epilepsy surgery assessment.