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Peripheral gene expression of several molecular pathways has been studied in major depression (MDD) with promising results. We sought to investigate some of these genes in a treatment-free Latino sample of Mexican-descent.
Material and Methods:
The sample consisted of 50 MDD treatment-free cases and 50 sex and age-matched controls. Gene expression of candidate genes of neuroplasticity (BDNF, p11, VGF), inflammation (IL1A, IL1B, IL4, IL6, IL7, IL8, IL10, MIF, TNFA), the canonical Wnt signaling pathway (TCF7L2, APC, GSK3B), and mTOR, was compared in cases and controls. RNA was obtained from blood samples. We used bivariate analyses to compare subjects vs. control mean mRNA quantification of target genes and lineal regression modeling to test for effects of age and BMI on gene expression.
Most subjects were female (66%) with a mean age of 26.7 (SD 7.9) years. Only GSK3B was differentially expressed between cases and controls at a statistically significant level (p = 0.048). TCF7L-2 showed the highest number of correlations with MDD-related traits, yet these were modest in size.
GSK3B encodes a moderator of the canonical Wnt signaling pathway. It has a role in neuroplasticity, neuroprotection, depression and other psychiatric phenotypes. We found that adding population diversity has the potential to elicit distinct peripheral gene expression markers in MDD and MDD-related traits. However, our results should only be considered as hypothesis-generating research that merits further replication in larger cohorts of similar ancestry.
The implications of cannabis use in the onset of early psychosis and the severity of psychotic symptoms have resulted in a proliferation of studies on this issue. However, few have examined the effects of cannabis use on the cognitive symptoms of psychosis (i.e., neurocognitive functioning) in patients with first-episode psychosis (FEP). This systematic review and meta-analysis aim to assess the neurocognitive functioning of cannabis users (CU) and nonusers (NU) with FEP.
Of the 110 studies identified through the systematic review of 6 databases, 7 met the inclusion criteria, resulting in 14 independent samples and 78 effect sizes. The total sample included 304 CU with FEP and 369 NU with FEP. The moderator variables were age at first use, duration of use, percentage of males, and age.
Effect sizes were not significantly different from zero in any neurocognitive domain when users and NU were compared. Part of the variability in effect sizes was explained by the inclusion of the following moderator variables: (1) frequency of cannabis use (β = 0.013, F = 7.56, p = 0.017); (2) first-generation antipsychotics (β = 0.019, F = 34.46, p ≤ 0.001); and (3) country where the study was carried out (β = 0.266, t = 2.06, p = 0.043).
This meta-analysis indicates that cannabis use is not generally associated with neurocognitive functioning in patients with FEP. However, it highlights the deleterious effect of low doses of cannabis in some patients. It also stresses the importance of the type of antipsychotic prescription and cannabis dose as moderator variables in the neurocognitive functioning of CU with FEP.
Drawing on the new institutional theory and the resources based view of the firm (RBV), this study tries to shed light upon the idea that isomorphic organizational changes seek legitimacy over efficiency. Using data from 102 Spanish companies and employing partial least squares, a variance-based structural equation modeling technique, this study concludes that both objectives are achievable simultaneously when firms implement total quality management (TQM) as an integrative stream of both theories. Furthermore, empirical results reveal that: (i) institutional pressures (IP) condition significantly the implementation of TQM, (ii) TQM exerts a double mediating role in the IP-legitimacy and IP-efficiency relationships, and (iii) both efficiency and legitimacy objectives are achieved by means of TQM. However, we observe a dual phenomenon: (i) while we find a significant positive effect of TQM on overall performance (OP) via efficiency and (ii) we failed to find support for the TQM-OP link via legitimacy.
The paper shows the connections between some importance indices for the components in an engineering coherent system and the performance of the system obtained when a redundancy mechanism is applied to a specific component. A copula approach is used to model the dependency among the components. This approach includes the popular case of independent components. Under some assumptions, it is proved that if component i is more important than component j, then the system obtained by applying a redundancy procedure to the ith component is better, under different stochastic criteria, than that obtained with the jth component. These results can be applied to several redundancy mechanisms. A new importance index is defined to study active redundancies. Some illustrative examples are provided.
A 6–18 GHz high-power amplifier (HPA) design in GaN on SiC technology is presented. This power amplifier consists of a two-stage corporate amplifier with two and four transistors, respectively. It has been fabricated on UMS using their 0.25 µm gate length process, GH25. A study of the suitable attachment method and measurement on wafer and on jig are detailed. This HPA exhibits an averaged output power of 39.2 dBm with a mean gain of 11 dB in saturation and a 24.5% maximum power added efficiency in pulse mode operation with a duty cycle of 10% with a 25 µs pulse width.
The tourist attraction of a cruise itinerary is composed of the on board experience plus the shore-based experience. Due to the positive dynamism of the cruise industry since the beginning of the twenty-first century, cruise lines are driven to innovate to create new experiences that help maintain high demand rates. From the point of view of creating new experiences on land, cruise lines move their vessels from one destination region to another to maximise the vessel's occupancy and to offer itineraries with a wider variety of shore-based attractions. These new itinerary designs lead to alterations in the seasonality patterns of the neighbouring regions. In this work, the 17 most important cruise ports located in the northeast quadrant of the Atlantic Ocean are analysed to find groups of ports with homogeneous seasonality patterns using clustering techniques. The analysis showed two different seasonality patterns. Consequently, some implications to improve the use of the ports of both clusters are included.
The predominantly carbonate nature of the mountains near the coast of Málaga and Marbella (Costa del Sol, southern Spain) and the presence of springs have favored the formation of travertine buildups during the Quaternary. The geomorphic characteristics of the slopes and the location of the springs have determined the development of three types of travertine growths: (1) spring travertines, located preferentially on the south mountainside, where the slope is steepest; (2) pool-dam-cascade travertines, which form along the north and east edges, far from the carbonate relief and with a gentler slope; and (3) river-valley travertines, formed in the courses of the springs of any sector. Field observations combined with new amino acid racemization (AAR) dating of Helicidae gastropods show that most of the travertine formations are polyphasic and that their development was interrupted by stages of erosion and incision. Five stages of travertine development are evident, most of which are related to warm, moist episodes corresponding to marine oxygen isotope stages (MIS) 7, 5, 3, and 1, although local travertine growth also occurred during MIS 6 and during the transition from MIS 3 to 2.
Earlier activities on health technology assessment (HTA) started in Spain around 1984, with the creation of a National Advisory Board on HTA, and the development of national and regional HTA organizations in the early 1990s. In 2012, the Spanish Health Ministry established the Spanish Network for Health Technology Assessment of the National Health System (RedETS); funded at national level and including all public HTA organizations at national and regional levels. RedETSis focused on the assessment of nondrug health technologies to inform the revision (approval and funding or disinvestment) of the Benefit Portfolio of the Spanish NHS. In parallel with European Network for Health Technology Assessment (EUnetHTA), RedETS has been setting-up and sharing common procedures and methodological guidelines to ensure effective cooperation and mutual recognition of the scientific and technical production in HTA. The output of RedETS is fifty to sixty annual reports, including the production of full HTA reports, Clinical Practice Guidelines, methodological guidance reports, relative effectiveness assessments, tools to support shared decision making between patients and healthcare professionals, and monitoring studies. The HTA assessments requested by the Regional Health Authorities are the biggest component of the annual RedETS working plan. These assessment needs are identified according to a yearly process and prioritized by a Commission composed of representatives from all Spanish regions with the aid of the PRITEC tool. The objectives of this study are to report and update the normative and organizational state of HTA in Spain; describing noteworthy advances witnessed over the past 10 years, as well as discussing existing challenges.
To investigate whether amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI) identified with visual memory tests conveys an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease (risk-AD) and if the risk-AD differs from that associated with aMCI based on verbal memory tests.
4,771 participants aged 70.76 (SD = 6.74, 45.4% females) from five community-based studies, each a member of the international COSMIC consortium and from a different country, were classified as having normal cognition (NC) or one of visual, verbal, or combined (visual and verbal) aMCI using international criteria and followed for an average of 2.48 years. Hazard ratios (HR) and individual patient data (IPD) meta-analysis analyzed the risk-AD with age, sex, education, single/multiple domain aMCI, and Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) scores as covariates.
All aMCI groups (n = 760) had a greater risk-AD than NC (n = 4,011; HR range = 3.66 – 9.25). The risk-AD was not different between visual (n = 208, 17 converters) and verbal aMCI (n = 449, 29 converters, HR = 1.70, 95%CI: 0.88, 3.27, p = 0.111). Combined aMCI (n = 103, 12 converters, HR = 2.34, 95%CI: 1.13, 4.84, p = 0.023) had a higher risk-AD than verbal aMCI. Age and MMSE scores were related to the risk-AD. The IPD meta-analyses replicated these results, though with slightly lower HR estimates (HR range = 3.68, 7.43) for aMCI vs. NC.
Although verbal aMCI was most common, a significant proportion of participants had visual-only or combined visual and verbal aMCI. Compared with verbal aMCI, the risk-AD was the same for visual aMCI and higher for combined aMCI. Our results highlight the importance of including both verbal and visual memory tests in neuropsychological assessments to more reliably identify aMCI.
The study of the paradigmatic traits of teenage slang has shown that a sense of togetherness is predominant (Eble, 1996; Allen, 1998; Mattiello, 2005, 2008; Smith, 2011). This cohesive linguistic device is not consciously intended to exclude unwished members from conversations or common understanding, but the idea of relying on a preserved sense of solidarity and acceptance is a human urge, especially among teenagers or young adults (cf. Mattiello, 2005: 13). These features are a necessary starting point to understand that the colloquial nature or social restriction of these words and phrases are precisely aimed to ‘establish or reinforce social identity within a group or with a trend or fashion in society at large’ (Eble, 1996: 11).
Cognitive deficits are a core feature of early stages in schizophrenia. However, the extent to which antipsychotic (AP) have a deleterious effect on cognitive performance remains under debate. We aim to investigate whether anticholinergic loadings and dose of AP drugs in first episode of psychosis (FEP) in advanced phase of remission are associated with cognitive impairment and the differences between premorbid intellectual quotient (IQ) subgroups.
Two hundred and sixty-six patients participated. The primary outcomes were cognitive dimensions, dopaminergic/anticholinergic load of AP [in chlorpromazine equivalents (Eq-CPZ) and the Anticholinergic Risk Scale (ARS), respectively].
Impairments in processing speed, verbal memory and global cognition were significantly associated with high Eq-CPZ and verbal impairment with high ARS score. Moreover, this effect was higher in the low IQ subgroup.
Clinicians should be aware of the potential cognitive impairment associated with AP in advanced remission FEP, particularly in lower premorbid IQ patients.
In 1966, after more than 700 years, the irrigation community in Mula (Spain) switched from auctions to quotas to allocate water from its river. This change happened in the absence of either political or technological change. Quotas were more efficient, but required that farmers own water property rights. I develop a model in which poor farmers cannot credibly commit to purchase water rights. I show that empirical evidence on savings and prices is consistent with this interpretation. A temporary increase in output prices in the 1950s and better financial institutions allowed farmers to accumulate savings and solve the commitment problem.
“There is nothing more difficult to arrange, more doubtful of success, and more dangerous to carry through, than to initiate a new order of things.”
Observing the supernovae (SNe) associated to the different types of gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) is one of the few means to study their progenitors. In the past years, it has become clear that GRB-like events are more heterogeneous than previously thought. There is a marked difference between long GRBs, which are produced by the collapse of very massive stars and are normally associated with broad-lined type Ic SNe, and short bursts, which occur when two compact objects merge and that, at least in some cases, can produce an associated kilonova. Moreover, the SNe associated with different sub-types of long GRBs are also seen to differ, especially those associated with ultra-long duration GRBs. To address this issue in a systematic way we started an observing programme in 2010 at the 10.4m GTC telescope. Here we present some results of our programme, including the detection of 12 new GRB-SNe. Highlights of our sample are the discovery of the first spectroscopic SN associated with a highly energetic (Eγ, iso ~ 1054 erg) “cosmological” burst (GRB 130427A), the study of the SN associated with a shock-breakout GRB (GRB 140606B) and the SN associated with the peculiar ultra-long GRB 101225A at z = 0.85. The sample includes also the follow-up of several short GRBs in search for kilonovae emission (GRB 130603B and GRB 160821B are important examples). Amongst our latest results we present the photometric and spectroscopic observations of the SNe associated with GRB 150818A and GRB 161219B.
The Padua Inventory (PI) of obsessions and compulsions is one of the most usually applied tests to assess obsessive-compulsive symptomatology in research contexts as well as for clinical and screening purposes. A reliability generalization meta-analysis was accomplished to estimate the average reliability of the PI scores and to search for characteristics of the samples and studies that can explain the variability among reliability estimates. An exhaustive literature search enabled us to select 39 studies (53 independent samples) that reported alpha and/or test-retest coefficients with the data at hand for the PI total score and subscales. An excellent average coefficient alpha was found for the PI total score (M = .935; 95%CI = .922–.949) and for Impaired Mental Control subscale (M = .911; 95%CI = .897–.924), being good for Contamination (M = .861; 95%CI = .841–.882) and Checking (M = .880; 95%CI = .856–.903), and fair for Urges and Worries (M = .783; 95%CI = .745–.822). The average test-retest reliability for PI total score was also satisfactory (M = .835; 95%CI = .782–.877). Moderator analyses showed larger coefficients alpha for larger standard deviation of the PI total scores (p = .0005; R2 = .46), for adapted versions of the test (p = .002; R2 = .32), and for samples composed of clinical participants (p = .066; R2 = .10). The practical implications of these results are discussed as well as the need for researchers to report reliability estimates with the data at hand.
This article explores the activities of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation in Spain during the transition to democracy. It describes the financial, logistical and training support with which this German Foundation contributed to the unexpected rebirth of the Spanish Socialist Party after Franco and its meteoric emergence as the leading left-wing party. It also assesses its cooperation with the Socialist trade union, which moved from irrelevance to a position of importance greater than the powerful Communist union. Finally, the article examines how the Foundation diversified its activities in order to meet the growing needs of and challenges faced by the Spanish Socialists in their path towards power.
This work analyses the evolution of the scientific visibility of the neurophysiologist José Manuel Rodríguez Delgado. It examines the longitudinal evolution from 1955 to 2013 of an article (Delgado, Roberts, & Miller, 1954) studying the neurological basis of learning and motivation and compares it with a coetaneous article (Olds & Milner, 1954) with a similar subject and methodology. Both studies have been essential in Psychology. This work analyses the number of times each article has been cited between 1955–1984 and 1985–2013. The results show that the visibility of James Olds and Peter Milner’s article (expressed in number of citations between 1955–1984 and 1985–2013) has longitudinally increased (p < .001), whereas the number of citations received by José Manuel Rodríguez Delgado et al.’s article has significantly reduced (p < .001). The results are discussed and the low visibility of Delgado’s article is explained through historical and social factors, including the growing concern about compliance with bioethical and research guidelines and the controversial media projection of the Spanish scientist, not by the intrinsic value or the scientific repercussion of the compared articles.
This paper analyses the consequences of urban environmental degradation on the well-being of Spanish miners. It is based on analyses of differences in mortality and height. The first part of the paper examines new hypotheses regarding the urban penalty. We take into consideration existing works in economic theory that address market failures when analysing the higher urban death rate. We explain the reduction in height using the model recently created by Floud, Fogel, Harris and Hong for British cities. The second part of the paper presents information demonstrating that the urban areas in the two largest mining areas in Spain (Bilbao and the Cartagena-La Unión mountain range) experienced a higher death rate relative to rural areas as a consequence of market failures derived from what we term an ‘anarchic urbanisation’.
Ignition in a supersonic mixing layer interacting with an oblique shock wave is investigated analytically and numerically under conditions such that the post-shock flow remains supersonic. The study requires consideration of the structure of the post-shock ignition kernel that is found to exist around the point of maximum temperature, which may be located either near the edge of the mixing layer or in its interior, depending on the profiles of the fuel concentration, temperature and Mach number across the mixing layer. The ignition kernel displays a balance between the rates of chemical reaction and of post-shock flow expansion, including the acoustic interactions of the chemical heat release with the shock wave, leading to increased front curvature. The analysis, which adopts a one-step chemistry model with large activation energy, indicates that ignition develops as a fold bifurcation, the turning point in the diagram of the peak perturbation induced by the chemical reaction as a function of the Damköhler number providing the critical conditions for ignition. While an explicit formula for the critical Damköhler number for ignition is derived when ignition occurs in the interior of the mixing layer, under which condition the ignition kernel is narrow in the streamwise direction, numerical integration is required for determining ignition when it occurs at the edge, under which condition the kernel is no longer slender. Subsequent to ignition, for the Arrhenius chemistry addressed, the lead shock will rapidly be transformed into a thin detonation on the fuel side of the ignition kernel, and, under suitable conditions, a deflagration may extend far downstream, along with the diffusion flame that must separate the rich and lean reaction products. The results can be helpful in describing supersonic combustion for high-speed propulsion.