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This study proposes two multimodal frameworks to classify pathological voice samples by combining acoustic signals and medical records. In the first framework, acoustic signals are transformed into static supervectors via Gaussian mixture models; then, a deep neural network (DNN) combines the supervectors with the medical record and classifies the voice signals. In the second framework, both acoustic features and medical data are processed through first-stage DNNs individually; then, a second-stage DNN combines the outputs of the first-stage DNNs and performs classification. Voice samples were recorded in a specific voice clinic of a tertiary teaching hospital, including three common categories of vocal diseases, i.e. glottic neoplasm, phonotraumatic lesions, and vocal paralysis. Experimental results demonstrated that the proposed framework yields significant accuracy and unweighted average recall (UAR) improvements of 2.02–10.32% and 2.48–17.31%, respectively, compared with systems that use only acoustic signals or medical records. The proposed algorithm also provides higher accuracy and UAR than traditional feature-based and model-based combination methods.
Major depressive disorder (MDD) is highly heterogeneous and can be classified as treatment-resistant depression (TRD) or antidepressant-responsive depression (non-TRD) based on patients' responses to antidepressant treatment. Methods for distinguishing between TRD and non-TRD are critical clinical concerns. Deficits of cortical inhibition (CI) have been reported to play an influential role in the pathophysiology of MDD. Whether TRD patients' CI is more impaired than that of non-TRD patients remains unclear.
Paired-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation (ppTMS) was used to measure cortical inhibitory function including GABAA- and GABAB-receptor-related CI and cortical excitatory function including glutamate-receptor-related intracortical facilitation (ICF). We recruited 36 healthy controls (HC) and 36 patients with MDD (non-TRD, n = 16; TRD, n = 20). All participants received evaluations for depression severity and ppTMS examinations. Non-TRD patients received an additional ppTMS examination after 3 months of treatment with the SSRI escitalopram.
Patients with TRD exhibited reduced short-interval intracortical inhibition (SICI) and long-interval intracortical inhibition (LICI), as shown by abnormally higher estimates, than those with non-TRD or HC (F = 11.030, p < 0.001; F = 10.309, p < 0.001, respectively). After an adequate trial of escitalopram treatment, the LICI of non-TRD reduced significantly (t = − 3.628, p < 0.001), whereas the ICF remained lower than that of HC and showed no difference from pretreatment non-TRD.
TRD was characterized by relatively reduced CI, including both GABAA- and GABAB-receptor-mediated neurons while non-TRD preserved partial CI. In non-TRD, SSRIs may mainly modulate GABAB-receptor-related LICI. Our findings revealed distinguishable features of CI in antidepressant-resistant and responsive major depression.
The effective charge of an element is a parameter characterizing the electromigration effect, which can determine the reliability of interconnection in electronic technologies. In this work, machine learning approaches were employed to model the effective charge (z*) as a linear function of physically meaningful elemental properties. Average fivefold (leave-out-alloy-group) cross-validation yielded root-mean-square-error divided by whole data set standard deviation (RMSE/σ) values of 0.37 ± 0.01 (0.22 ± 0.18), respectively, and R2 values of 0.86. Extrapolation to z* of totally new alloys showed limited but potentially useful predictive ability. The model was used in predicting z* for technologically relevant host–impurity pairs.
Information systems (IS) have facilitated workflow in the health care system for years. However, the utilization of IS in disaster medical assistance teams (DMATs) has been less studied.
In Taiwan, we started a program in 2008 to build up an information system, MEDical Assistance and Information Dashboard (MED-AID), to improve the capability and increase the efficiency of our national DMAT.
Method: The mission of our national DMAT was to provide acute trauma care and subacute outpatient care in the field after an emergency event (e.g., earthquakes). We built the IS through a user-oriented process to fit the need of the DMAT. We first analyzed the response work in the DMAT missions and reviewed the current paperwork. We evaluated the eligibility and effectiveness of the core functions of DMATs by experts in Taiwan and then developed the IS. The IS was then tested and revised each year in two table-top exercises and one regional full-scale exercise by the DMAT staffs who came from different hospitals in Taiwan.
During the past 10 years, we identified several core concepts of IS of DMAT: patient tracking, medical record, continuity of care, integration of referral resources, disease surveillance, patient information reporting, and medical resources management. The application of the IS facilitate the DMAT in providing safe patient care with continuous recording and integrate patient referral resources based on geographic information. The IS also help the planning in real-time disease surveillance and logistic function in the medical resources monitoring.
Information systems could facilitate patient care and relieve the workload on information analysis and resources management for DMATs.
More than one million runners have joined the marathon games since 2007 in Taiwan. There were over 150 marathon games held in Taiwan in 2018. The increase rate was 21% as compared to that of 2014. The medical encounter rate was 1.33% in 2015 and increased to 1.41% in 2017. The most common type of injury was muscle spasm. The second most common was abrasion due to falls. The treatment for muscle spasm was RICE only. Cardiac arrest of marathon runners was reported occasionally and time is critical for rescue.
To shorten the rescue time of the runners in an emergency. Base on the prodromal research, BLE communication technology is further used to improve the rescue positioning communication technology in the marathon.
After rescue notification devices have been set up in each 0.5 km on the runway of the marathon, the runner can send a rescue signal through the rescue notification devices in case of emergency. The rescue signal, periodically advertisement SN# with rescue mark, of the runner can be precisely located and the rescue can be started very soon.
In the simulation, the rescue signal can be located in 7.5 minutes, fastest in 3 seconds. The precision rate of timing is ±160ms/6σ that under IAAF accuracy requirement. The location error is less than 20 meters, and the rescue time can be shortened to one half as before.
The rescue time of runner is correlated with the quality of marathon EMS. It is critical to the runner, especially in cardiac arrest. By using BLE communication devices, the runner can be located faster and more precisely. As rescue time shortened, CPR & AED can be given sooner. The quality of marathon EMS will be improved substantially.
Two solid state anaerobic digesters (SSADs), 15 L each, were set up for co-digestion of switchgrass with primary digestate of a liquid anaerobic digester (LAD) and the recirculating leachate. Both the LAD and two SSADs were operated at 50°C. The results showed that the bioreactors were not started up stably until day 16 and day 47 for reactors A and B, respectively. The supplement of LAD digestate or injection of sodium hydroxide (NaOH) into the recirculating leachate readily reinitiated the biogas production to normal daily high rates of the two individual SSADs, one on day 16 and the other on day 47. In contrast to reactor A, there was a longer lag phase for bioreactor B, however, it showed 46.2% [77.9 vs 53.3 L kg−1 volatile solid (VS)] more cumulative biogas yields, and higher reduction rate of total solid, VS, cellulose and hemicellulose of 29.5, 31, 40.6 and 15%, respectively, which was likely due to optimized pH and NaOH pretreated switchgrass during start-up period. Methane contents of biogas increased gradually and stabilized at 50% for both reactors, indicating a normal operation of anaerobic digestion lasted for at least 100 days. The determined parameters of digested residues met China organic fertilizer standard (NY 525-2012) except for high moisture and low total nutrient contents. Therefore, the product of SSAD has the potential value of organic fertilizer. It is concluded that the LAD digestate can be reused as inoculums by co-digestion with agricultural residues for biogas and organic fertilizer production in SSAD.
The apolipoprotein E (APOE) genotype provides information about Alzheimer’s disease risk, yet genotype disclosure is discouraged due to concerns about possible distress. This is the first study investigating the psychological and behavioral impacts that genetic susceptibility testing for Alzheimer’s disease has in an Asian population.
From March 2016 to November 2017, we ran a prospective cohort study at Duke-National University of Singapore Medical School. 280 healthy Chinese elderly filled in questionnaires that measured psychological symptoms and health behaviors, 1 week before and 6 weeks after APOE genotype disclosure. Responses from ε4-positive subjects (associated with greater Alzheimer’s disease risk) were compared to responses from ε4-negative subjects.
ε4 presence was not significantly associated with anxiety (p = 0.09) or depression (p = 0.25). No associations were found for changes to diet (p = 0.36), dietary supplements consumption (p = 0.90), physical activity (p = 0.15), or cognitive activity (p = 0.18).
There is no evidence to suggest that disclosure of APOE to Asian populations was associated with any short-term adverse psychological or behavioral impacts.
Research suggests an association between metabolic disorders, such as type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), and schizophrenia. However, the risk of metabolic disorders in the unaffected siblings of patients with schizophrenia remains unclear.
Using the Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database, 3135 unaffected siblings of schizophrenia probands and 12,540 age-/sex-matched control subjects were included and followed up to the end of 2011. Individuals who developed metabolic disorders during the follow-up period were identified.
The unaffected siblings of schizophrenia probands had a higher prevalence of T2DM (3.4% vs. 2.6%, p = 0.010) than the controls. Logistic regression analyses with the adjustment of demographic data revealed that the unaffected siblings of patients with schizophrenia were more likely to develop T2DM (odds ratio [OR]: 1.39, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.10–1.75) later in life compared with the control group. Moreover, only female siblings of schizophrenia probands had an increased risk of hypertension (OR: 1.47, 95% CI: 1.07–2.01) during the follow-up compared with the controls.
The unaffected siblings, especially sisters, of schizophrenia probands had a higher prevalence of T2DM and hypertension compared with the controls. Our study revealed a familial link between schizophrenia and T2DM in a large sample. Additional studies are required to investigate the shared pathophysiology of schizophrenia and T2DM.
Monthly disaggregated US data from 1978 to 2016 reveal that exposure to news on inflation and monetary policy helps to explain inflation expectations. This remains true when controlling for household personal characteristics, perceptions of government policy effectiveness, expectations of future interest and unemployment rates, and sentiment. We find an asymmetric impact of news on inflation and monetary policy after 1983, with news on rising inflation and easier monetary policy having a stronger effect in comparison to news on lowering inflation and tightening monetary policy. Our results indicate the impact on inflation expectations of monetary policy news manifested through consumer sentiment during the lower bound period.
Bipolar disorder is a highly heritable mental illness that transmits intergeneratively. Previous studies supported that first-degree relatives (FDRs), such as parents, offspring, and siblings, of patients with bipolar disorder, had a higher risk of bipolar disorder. However, whether FDRs of bipolar patients have an increased risk of schizophrenia, major depressive disorder (MDD), autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) remains unclear.
Among the entire population in Taiwan, 87 639 patients with bipolar disorder and 188 290 FDRs of patients with bipolar disorder were identified in our study. The relative risks (RRs) of major psychiatric disorders were assessed among FDRs of patients with bipolar disorder.
FDRs of patients with bipolar disorder were more likely to have a higher risk of major psychiatric disorders, including bipolar disorder (RR 6.12, 95% confidence interval (CI) 5.95–6.30), MDD (RR 2.89, 95% CI 2.82–2.96), schizophrenia (RR 2.64, 95% CI 2.55–2.73), ADHD (RR 2.21, 95% CI 2.13–2.30), and ASD (RR 2.10, 95% CI 1.92–2.29), than the total population did. These increased risks for major psychiatric disorders were consistent across different familial kinships, such as parents, offspring, siblings, and twins. A dose-dependent relationship was also found between risk of each major psychiatric disorder and numbers of bipolar patients.
Our study was the first study to support the familial coaggregation of bipolar disorder with other major psychiatric disorders, including schizophrenia, MDD, ADHD, and ASD, in a Taiwanese (non-Caucasian) population. Given the elevated risks of major psychiatric disorders, the public health government should pay more attention to the mental health of FDRs of patients with bipolar disorder.
The impact of age on the development of depression among patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) at stages before dialysis is not well known. We aimed to explore the incidence of major depression among predialysis CKD patients of successively older ages through midlife.
We conducted a retrospective cohort study using the longitudinal health insurance database 2005 in Taiwan. This study investigated 17,889 predialysis CKD patients who were further categorized into study (i.e. middle and old-aged) groups and comparison group aged 18–44. The International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification (ICD-9-CM) was applied for coding diseases.
The group aged 75 and over had the lowest (hazard ratio [HR] 0.47; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.32–0.69) risk of developing major depression, followed by the group aged 65–74 (HR 0.67; 95% CI 0.49–0.92), using the comparison group as reference. The adjusted survival curves showed significant differences in cumulative major depression-free survival between different age groups. We observed that the risk of major depression development decreases with higher age. Females were at a higher risk of major depression than males among predialyasis CKD patients.
The incidence of major depression declines with higher age in predialysis CKD patients over midlife. Among all age groups, patients aged 75 and over have the lowest risk of developing major depression. A female preponderance in major depression development is present. We suggest that depression prevention and therapy should be integrated into the standard care for predialysis CKD patients, especially for those young and female.
Previous studies of East Asian welfare regimes focus on similarities between social security schemes. In contrast, this paper explores cross-national variations in public–private pension mixes in six welfare states: China, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan. Our research echoes the pension policy analysis of international organisations but takes a step forward with emphasis on the historical and institutional characteristics of the respective pension systems. The analysis identifies three institutional patterns. First, the statist pension system (Taiwan and China) primarily relies on public pensions to provide old-age security, with private pensions playing a rather minor role. Second, in the dualist pension system (Japan and Korea) both public and private pensions work in parallel to ensure retirement income, though a clear security gap exists between workers in the formal and informal economies. Finally, the individualist pension system (Hong Kong and Singapore) is characterised by genuine fully funded individual accounts, emphasising citizens’ own responsibilities for ensuring old-age security. These three types of pension systems demonstrate distinct institutional characteristics and policy outcomes, illustrated by the juxtaposition of their institutional structures as well as by the comparison of key indicators collected from government reports and Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development statistics. The paper concludes with a theoretical reflection of East Asian pension policies and a diagnosis of the distinct challenges confronted by each of the various pension patterns.
This paper presents evidence against the existence of sonority-driven stress in Gujarati. Gujarati is one of the clearest and most revealing cases of sonority-driven stress with distinctions among peripheral vowels. A production experiment was performed to determine the accuracy of the claim that [a] attracts stress away from the default position. Of the five types of phonetic evidence examined, only F1 provides clear evidence for stress, revealing stress to be consistently penultimate, and not sonority-driven. As Gujarati is one of the core cases of sonority-driven stress, this finding challenges the claim that it exists. However, this paper does not exclude the possibility that stress may avoid schwa (or central vowels), as reported for several languages. Theoretical and methodological implications are discussed, particularly for theories that have a ‘symmetric effect’ and for descriptions that are impressionistic.