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The current study investigated the comprehension of subject and object relative clauses (RCs) in bilingual Mandarin–English children (N = 55, Mage = 7 years, 5 months [7;5], SD = 1;8) and language-matched monolingual Mandarin-speaking children (N = 59, Mage = 5;4, SD = 0;7). The children completed a picture-referent selection task that tested their comprehension of subject and object RCs, and standardized assessments of vocabulary knowledge. Results showed a very similar pattern of responding in both groups. In comparison to past studies of Cantonese, the bilingual and monolingual children both showed a significant subject-over-object RC advantage. An error analysis suggested that the children’s difficulty with object RCs reflected the tendency to interpret the sentential subject as the head noun. A subsequent corpus analysis suggested that children’s difficulty with object RCs may be in part due to distributional information favoring subject RC analyses. Individual differences analyses suggested crosslinguistic transfer from English to Mandarin in the bilingual children at the individual but not the group level, with the results indicating that comparative English dominance makes children vulnerable to error.
Cognitive impairment is a core feature of schizophrenia and has been observed in both familial (FHR) and clinical high-risk (CHR) samples. Nonetheless, there is a paucity of research directly contrasting cognitive profiles in these two high-risk states and first-episode schizophrenia. This study aimed to compare cognitive functions in patients with first-episode schizophrenia-spectrum disorder (FES), their unaffected siblings (FHR), CHR individuals and healthy controls.
A standardized battery of cognitive assessments was administered to 69 FES patients, 71 help-seeking CHR individuals without family history of psychotic disorder, 50 FHR participants and 68 controls. FES and CHR participants were recruited from territory-wide early intervention service for psychosis in Hong Kong. CHR status was ascertained using Comprehensive Assessment of At-Risk Mental State.
Among four groups, FES patients displayed the largest global cognitive impairment and had medium-to-large deficits across all cognitive tests relative to controls. CHR and FHR participants significantly underperformed in most cognitive tests than controls. Among various cognitive tests, digit symbol coding demonstrated the greatest magnitude of impairment in FES and CHR groups compared with controls. No significant difference between two high-risk groups was observed in global cognition and all individual cognitive tests except digit symbol coding which showed greater deficits in CHR than in FHR participants.
Clinical and familial risk groups experienced largely comparable cognitive impairment that was intermediate between FES and controls. Digit symbol coding may have the greatest discriminant capacity in distinguishing FES and CHR from healthy controls, and between two high-risk samples.
We report on an eye-tracking study that investigated four-year-old Cantonese-speaking children's online processing of subject and object relative clauses (RCs). Children's eye-movements were recorded as they listened to RC structures identifying a unique referent (e.g. “Can you pick up the horse that pushed the pig?”). Two RC types, classifier (CL) and ge3 RCs, were tested in a between-participants design. The two RC types differ in their syntactic analyses and frequency of occurrence, providing an important point of comparison for theories of RC acquisition and processing. A permutation analysis showed that the two structures were processed differently: CL RCs showed a significant object-over-subject advantage, whereas ge3 RCs showed the opposite effect. This study shows that children can have different preferences even for two very similar RC structures within the same language, suggesting that syntactic processing preferences are shaped by the unique features of particular constructions both within and across different linguistic typologies.
The current study investigated the role of cross-linguistic influence in Cantonese–English bilingual children's comprehension of subject- and object-extracted relative clauses (RCs). Twenty simultaneous Cantonese–English bilingual children (Mage = 8;11, SD = 2;6) and 20 vocabulary-matched Cantonese monolingual children (Mage = 6;4, SD = 1;3) completed a test of Cantonese RC comprehension. The bilingual children also completed a test of English RC comprehension. The results showed that, whereas the monolingual children were equally competent on subject and object RCs, the bilingual children performed significantly better on subject RCs. Error analyses suggested that the bilingual children were most often correctly assigning thematic roles in object RCs, but were incorrectly choosing the RC subject as the head referent. This pervasive error was interpreted to be due to the fact that both Cantonese and English have canonical SVO word order, which creates competition with structures that compete with an object RC analysis.
The present study aimed to review the literature on micronutrient deficiency and other factors influencing a deficiency status among children living in China.
A systematic review was performed to analyse the literature.
Studies were identified through a search of PubMed and secondary references.
Children living in China aged less than 18 years.
Sixty-one articles were included. The prevalence of vitamin A deficiency decreased to approximately 10 % in 1995–2009. It increased with age but no significant difference was found between genders. The prevalence of thiamin and vitamin B12 deficiency was 10·5 % in Yunnan and 4·5 % in Chongqing provinces, respectively. Higher vitamin D deficiency rates were seen in spring and winter. The incidence of bleeding due to vitamin K deficiency was 3·3 % in 1998–2001 and more prevalent in rural areas. Both iodine deficiency and excess iodine intake were observed. Goitre rates were reported in Tibet, Jiangxi, Gansu and Hong Kong (3·5–46 %). Anaemia rates ranged from 20 % to 40 % in 2007–2011. High Se deficiency rates were found in Tibet, Shaanxi and Jiangsu. High Zn deficiency rates were also found (50–70 %) in 1995–2006. Few studies reported Ca deficiency rates (19·6–34·3 %). The degrees of deficiency for vitamin A, vitamin B12, Fe and Zn were more substantial in rural areas compared with urban areas.
The prevalence of micronutrient deficiency rates varied. Socio-economic status, environmental factors and the Chinese diet may influence micronutrient deficiency. Public health policies should consider implementing programmes of supplementation, food fortification and nutrition education to address these deficiencies among Chinese children.
The present study aimed to examine the clinical validity and applicability of the Chinese version of Mattis Dementia Rating Scale (CDRS) for elderly Chinese individuals. The scale was found to have good reliability with internal consistency ranging from 0.7 to 0.9. Its significant correlation with the Chinese version of Mini-Mental State Examination (CMMSE) suggested satisfactory construct validity of the scale. The discriminant validity of the CDRS in differentiating Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients and Normal Control (NC) elderly was also supported by the Receiver Operating Characteristics (ROC) analysis. Several cut-off points were presented for different clinical or research applications, and formulas to adjust for the age and educational level of the CDRS total score were provided. The Initiation/Perseveration and Memory subscales were suggested to be an abbreviated version of the CDRS for a quick screening. The present results also showed the association between the impairment of the CDRS performance and the progress of the AD. (JINS, 2003, 9, 45–55.)
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