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Clonal Mycobacterium mucogenicum isolates (determined by molecular typing) were recovered from 19 bronchoscopic specimens from 15 patients. None of these patients had evidence of mycobacterial infection. Laboratory culture materials and bronchoscopes were negative for Mycobacteria. This pseudo-outbreak was caused by contaminated ice used to provide bronchoscopic lavage. Control was achieved by transitioning to sterile ice.
Leprocaulon calcicola is described as new from walls in SE England; it is leprose, pale to mid blue-grey, and contains zeorin and usnic acid. It differs from L. knudsenii from North America in its habitat on mortared walls rather than non-calcareous rock and in its ITS sequence. ‘Lecanora’ ecorticata differs in the yellower colour, and the presence of unidentified fatty acids and traces of unknown terpenoids (but not zeorin) by thin-layer chromatography. Leprose lichens with usnic acid are still poorly known and sequencing must be used to support morphological and chemical studies.
Approximately half of the variation in wellbeing measures overlaps with variation in personality traits. Studies of non-human primate pedigrees and human twins suggest that this is due to common genetic influences. We tested whether personality polygenic scores for the NEO Five-Factor Inventory (NEO-FFI) domains and for item response theory (IRT) derived extraversion and neuroticism scores predict variance in wellbeing measures. Polygenic scores were based on published genome-wide association (GWA) results in over 17,000 individuals for the NEO-FFI and in over 63,000 for the IRT extraversion and neuroticism traits. The NEO-FFI polygenic scores were used to predict life satisfaction in 7 cohorts, positive affect in 12 cohorts, and general wellbeing in 1 cohort (maximal N = 46,508). Meta-analysis of these results showed no significant association between NEO-FFI personality polygenic scores and the wellbeing measures. IRT extraversion and neuroticism polygenic scores were used to predict life satisfaction and positive affect in almost 37,000 individuals from UK Biobank. Significant positive associations (effect sizes <0.05%) were observed between the extraversion polygenic score and wellbeing measures, and a negative association was observed between the polygenic neuroticism score and life satisfaction. Furthermore, using GWA data, genetic correlations of -0.49 and -0.55 were estimated between neuroticism with life satisfaction and positive affect, respectively. The moderate genetic correlation between neuroticism and wellbeing is in line with twin research showing that genetic influences on wellbeing are also shared with other independent personality domains.
Major depressive disorder (MDD) is moderately heritable, however genome-wide association studies (GWAS) for MDD, as well as for related continuous outcomes, have not shown consistent results. Attempts to elucidate the genetic basis of MDD may be hindered by heterogeneity in diagnosis. The Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression (CES-D) scale provides a widely used tool for measuring depressive symptoms clustered in four different domains which can be combined together into a total score but also can be analysed as separate symptom domains.
We performed a meta-analysis of GWAS of the CES-D symptom clusters. We recruited 12 cohorts with the 20- or 10-item CES-D scale (32 528 persons).
One single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP), rs713224, located near the brain-expressed melatonin receptor (MTNR1A) gene, was associated with the somatic complaints domain of depression symptoms, with borderline genome-wide significance (pdiscovery = 3.82 × 10−8). The SNP was analysed in an additional five cohorts comprising the replication sample (6813 persons). However, the association was not consistent among the replication sample (pdiscovery+replication = 1.10 × 10−6) with evidence of heterogeneity.
Despite the effort to harmonize the phenotypes across cohorts and participants, our study is still underpowered to detect consistent association for depression, even by means of symptom classification. On the contrary, the SNP-based heritability and co-heritability estimation results suggest that a very minor part of the variation could be captured by GWAS, explaining the reason of sparse findings.
Community-acquired Staphylococcus aureus infections are a public health concern, yet little is known about infections that do not present to hospital. We identified community-onset S. aureus infections via specimens submitted to a community-based pathology service. Referring doctors confirmed eligibility and described infection site, severity and treatment. Isolates were characterized on antibiotic resistance, PFGE, MLST/SCCmec, and Panton–Valentine leukocidin (PVL), representing 106 community-onset infections; 34 non-multiresistant methicillin-resistant S. aureus (nmMRSA) (resistant to <3 non-β-lactam antibiotics), 15 multiply antibiotic-resistant MRSA (mMRSA) and 57 methicillin-sensitive S. aureus (MSSA). Most (93%) were skin and soft tissue infections. PVL genes were carried by 42% of nmMRSA isolates [95% confidence interval (CI) 26–61] and 15% of MSSA (95% CI 8–28). PVL was associated with infections of the trunk, head or neck (56·4% vs. 24·3%, P = 0·005) in younger patients (23 vs. 52 years, P < 0·001), and with boils or abscesses (OR 8·67, 95% CI 2·9–26·2), suggesting underlying differences in exposure and/or pathogenesis.
To access the fermentative response of equine caecal microbial population to nitrogen availability, an in vitro study was conducted using caecal contents provided with adequate energy sources and nitrogen as limiting nutrient. Two nitrogen (N) sources were provided, protein (casein) and non-protein (urea). Caecal fluid, taken from three cannulated horses receiving a hay–concentrate diet, was mixed with a N-free buffer–mineral solution. The influence of four N levels (3.7, 6.3, 12.5 or 25 mg of N in casein or urea) was studied using the gas production technique. Total volatile fatty acids (VFA), NH3-N and gas production were measured after a 24-h incubation period. Microbial biomass was estimated using adenine and guanine bases as internal markers, and ATP production was estimated stoichiometrically. Microbial growth efficiency (YATP) and gas efficiency (Egas) were estimated. Fermentation with casein as the sole N source was generally characterized by lower total VFA, NH3-N, total gas production and higher acetate : propionate (A : P) ratio and YATP than with urea. Results herein presented indicate that, under these in vitro conditions, caecal microbial population does in fact use urea N, but less efficiently than casein in terms of microbial growth.
Three species of Australian endemic catsharks (grey spotted catshark Asymbolus analis, orange spotted catshark A. rubiginosus and Australian sawtail shark Figaro boardmani) were collected from the trawl grounds of a highly seasonal commercial fishery off southern Queensland, Australia. Specimens were collected on the mid to outer continental shelf at depths between 78 and 168 m. This study provides the first information on the reproductive biology of these three poorly-known species. Mature female and male A. analis were observed from 455 mm total length (TL), mature female A. rubiginosus from 410 mm TL, mature male A. rubiginosus from 405 mm TL, mature female F. boardmani from 402 mm TL and mature male F. boardmani from 398 mm TL (although a lack of immature specimens precluded more accurate assessments of size at maturity). The reproductive mode of all species was confirmed as single oviparous (carrying only one egg case in each uterus at a time). Ovarian fecundity (the number of vitellogenic follicles) ranged from 7–20 in A. analis, 5–23 in A. rubiginosus and 9–13 in F. boardmani. Several indicators suggest that Asymbolus catsharks off southern Queensland are reproductively active year-round. The proportion of female A. rubiginosus carrying egg cases was highest in spring (60%), intermediate in autumn (50%) and lowest in winter (44%).