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Animal hoarding is considered to be an under-reported problem, which affects the welfare of both people and animals. Few published studies on animal hoarding are available in the scientific literature, particularly outside North America. The present study was designed to obtain data on animal hoarding in Spain, with a particular focus on animal welfare issues. Data were obtained retrospectively from 24 case reports of animal hoarding involving a total of 1,218 dogs and cats and 27 hoarders. All cases were the result of legal intervention by a Spanish humane society during the period from 2002 to 2011. Hoarders could be characterised as elderly, socially isolated men and women who tended to hoard only one species (dog or cat). Most cases presented a chronic course of more than five years of animal hoarding. The average number of animals per case was 50, with most animals being dogs. In 75% of cases the animals showed indications of poor welfare, including poor body condition, and the presence of wounds, parasitic and infectious illnesses. Amongst the hoarded animals aggression and social fear were the most commonly reported behaviours. To the authors’ knowledge, this is the first report on animal hoarding in Spain and one of the first in Europe. Further studies are needed to fully elucidate the epidemiology, cross-cultural differences and aetiology of this under-recognised public health and welfare problem. More research might help to find efficient protocols to assist in the resolution and prevention of this kind of problem.
Observational studies suggest that 25-hydroxy vitamin D (25(OH)D) concentration is inversely associated with pain. However, findings from intervention trials are inconsistent. We assessed the effect of vitamin D supplementation on pain using data from a large, double-blind, population-based, placebo-controlled trial (the D-Health Trial). 21 315 participants (aged 60–84 years) were randomly assigned to a monthly dose of 60 000 IU vitamin D3 or matching placebo. Pain was measured using the six-item Pain Impact Questionnaire (PIQ-6), administered 1, 2 and 5 years after enrolment. We used regression models (linear for continuous PIQ-6 score and log-binomial for binary categorisations of the score, namely ‘some or more pain impact’ and ‘presence of any bodily pain’) to estimate the effect of vitamin D on pain. We included 20 423 participants who completed ≥1 PIQ-6. In blood samples collected from 3943 randomly selected participants (∼800 per year), the mean (sd) 25(OH)D concentrations were 77 (sd 25) and 115 (sd 30) nmol/l in the placebo and vitamin D groups, respectively. Most (76 %) participants were predicted to have 25(OH)D concentration >50 nmol/l at baseline. The mean PIQ-6 was similar in all surveys (∼50·4). The adjusted mean difference in PIQ-6 score (vitamin D cf placebo) was 0·02 (95 % CI (−0·20, 0·25)). The proportion of participants with some or more pain impact and with the presence of bodily pain was also similar between groups (both prevalence ratios 1·01, 95 % CI (0·99, 1·03)). In conclusion, supplementation with 60 000 IU of vitamin D3/month had negligible effect on bodily pain.
Praecox feeling (PF) is a characteristic feeling of bizarreness or unease that a psychiatrist experiences when facing a patient with schizophrenia. This term, proposed by Rumke in 1941, was considered an important feature of a schizophrenia diagnosis. However, since the movement toward operational diagnostic methods in the late 1970s, it has fallen out of use.
This work aims to discuss the role of Praecox Feeling in the clinical approach to schizophrenia diagnosis.
PubMed database was searched using combinations of the terms “praecox”, combined with “feeling” and “schizophrenia”.
PF is sometimes experienced silently before the patient participates verbally. An experienced and attentive clinician can intuitively feels changes in the body posture, facial expression, the tone of the voice, motor behavior, and attitude that could look insignificant, but as a whole they present the patient as “definitely un-understandable.” Although there is lacking evidence to sustain the rehabilitation of the PF as a reliable and valid clinical criterion consistent with the operational approach, a broader scientific approach is called for. PF should not be trivialized, as is sometimes the case, into a quick diagnosis but could be a real determinant of medical decision.
Even though there may not be sufficient evidence to consider it valid clinical diagnostic criteria, it still appears to play an important role in the clinical decision-making process and should not be underestimated or stigmatized. This concept is not completely subjective and does rely on objective information, such as the patient’s behaviour and body language.
The recent literature indicates that the gut microbiota may affect brain functions through endocrine and metabolic pathways, antibody production and the enteric network while supporting its possible role in the onset and maintenance of several neuropsychiatric disorders, neurodevelopment and neurodegenerative disorders.
The aim of this work is to discuss the role of probiotics, prebiotics, or synbiotics as a potential treatment for symptoms of depression, anxiety, and stress.
Pub Med database was searched using following key words: “probiotics”, “prebiotics”, “mental disorders”, “psychological disorders”.
Although the exact mechanism is unknown, there is a link between the gut and mood disorders. Psychosocial factors, such as quality of life or well-being, are greatly influenced by gut function and there is a strong correlation between psychosocial features and gastrointestinal disorders. Elevated stress, anxiety, and depression are linked to intestinal dysbiosis and mood disorders are disproportionately high in patients with functional gut disorders. So, psychobiotics may provide benefit when used in conjunction with current antidepressant medications. Probiotics may exert their therapeutic benefits by restoring microbial balance in the gut, and also by minimizing gastrointestinal complaints, allowing for the effects of antidepressant medication to not be reduced. Stress and immune responses were improved following psychobiotic intervention in stressed adults. Psychobiotics offer potential alternative treatment options in mood disorders and their accompanying symptoms.
Pro and prebiotics can improve mental health and psychological function and can be offered as new medicines for common mental disorders. However, more clinical studies are required to support the clinical use of probiotics.
Despite the multitude of clinical manifestations of post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection (PASC), studies applying statistical methods to directly investigate patterns of symptom co-occurrence and their biological correlates are scarce.
We assessed 30 symptoms pertaining to different organ systems in 749 adults (age = 55 ± 14 years; 47% female) during in-person visits conducted at 6–11 months after hospitalization due to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), including six psychiatric and cognitive manifestations. Symptom co-occurrence was initially investigated using exploratory factor analysis (EFA), and latent variable modeling was then conducted using Item Response Theory (IRT). We investigated associations of latent variable severity with objective indices of persistent physical disability, pulmonary and kidney dysfunction, and C-reactive protein and D-dimer blood levels, measured at the same follow-up assessment.
The EFA extracted one factor, explaining 64.8% of variance; loadings were positive for all symptoms, and above 0.35 for 16 of them. The latent trait generated using IRT placed fatigue, psychiatric, and cognitive manifestations as the most discriminative symptoms (coefficients > 1.5, p < 0.001). Latent trait severity was associated with decreased body weight and poorer physical performance (coefficients > 0.240; p ⩽ 0.003), and elevated blood levels of C-reactive protein (coefficient = 0.378; 95% CI 0.215–0.541; p < 0.001) and D-dimer (coefficient = 0.412; 95% CI 0.123–0.702; p = 0.005). Results were similar after excluding subjects with pro-inflammatory comorbidities.
Different symptoms that persist for several months after moderate or severe COVID-19 may unite within one latent trait of PASC. This trait is dominated by fatigue and psychiatric symptoms, and is associated with objective signs of physical disability and persistent systemic inflammation.
The Dimensional Anhedonia Rating Scale (DARS) is a novel questionnaire to assess anhedonia of recent validation. In this work, we aim to study the equivalence between the traditional paper-and-pencil and the digital format of DARS. Sixty-nine patients filled the DARS in a paper-based and digital versions. We assessed differences between formats (Wilcoxon test), validity of the scales [Kappa and intraclass correlation coefficients (ICCs)], and reliability (Cronbach’s alpha and Guttman’s coefficient). We calculated the comparative fit index and the root mean squared error (RMSE) associated with the proposed one-factor structure. Total scores were higher for paper-based format. Significant differences between both formats were found for three items. The weighted Kappa coefficient was approximately 0.40 for most of the items. Internal consistency was greater than 0.94, and the ICC for the digital version was 0.95 and 0.94 for the paper-and-pencil version (F = 16.7, p < 0.001). Comparative Adjustment Index was 0.97 for the digital DARS and 0.97 for the paper-and-pencil DARS, and RMSE was 0.11 for the digital DARS and 0.10 for the paper-and-pencil DARS. We concluded that the digital DARS is consistent in many respects with the paper-and-pencil questionnaire, but equivalence with this format cannot be assumed without caution.
Protein quality has an important role in increasing satiety. Evidence suggests that whey protein (WP) provides satiety via gastrointestinal hormone secretion. Hydrolysed collagen supplementation can also stimulate the production of incretins and influence satiety and food intake. Thus, we sought to compare the effect of acute supplementation of WP or hydrolysed collagen on post-intervention appetite and energy consumption. This was a randomised, double-blind, crossover pilot study with ten healthy adult women (22·4 years/old) who were submitted to acute intake (single dose) of a beverage containing WP (40 g of concentrated WP) or hydrolysed collagen (40 g). Subjective appetite ratings (feelings of hunger, desire to eat and full stomach) were measured using the Visual Analog Scale (VAS), energy intake was quantified by ad libitum cheese bread consumption 2 hours after supplementation and blood was collected for leptin and glucose determination. There was no difference between treatment groups in the perception of hunger (P = 0·983), desire to eat (P = 0·326), full stomach feeling (P = 0·567) or food consumption (P = 0·168). Leptin concentrations at 60 min post supplementation were higher when subjects received hydrolysed collagen (P = 0·006). Acute supplementation with hydrolysed collagen increased leptin levels in comparison with WP, but had no effect on appetite measured by feelings of hunger, desire to eat, full stomach feeling (VAS) or energy consumption.
Conceptualising Schneider’s first-rank symptoms (FRS) as a diagnostic test whose performance can be measured in terms of sensitivity and specificity involves some issues that require reflection. The first formal proposal was contained in a 1939 monograph Schneider wrote, but little is known of their prehistory. In recent years there has been renewed interest in their clinical value.
This work aims to review the the diagnostic the evolution and diagnostic accuracy of FRS.
A non-systematic review was performed, searching Pubmed/MEDLINE for articles using the keywords “schizophrenia” and “first rank symptoms”.
From the beginning of Western descriptive psychopathology in the early 19th century, symptoms have been observed later described as first-rank by Schneider. When FRS are conceived as simple clinical indicators at a low level of inference, the results of the meta-analytic estimate of their diagnostic accuracy can be considered as a valid appraisal of their performance and usefulness. However, when FRS are conceptualised from a psychopathological perspective as strange and incomprehensible experiences that cannot be reduced merely to their propositional content and require substantial expertise and skill to be properly evaluated, the meta-analytic estimates can hardly be seen as a valid evaluation of their diagnostic significance, considering that some FRS are extremely difficult to assess properly.
The descriptions of these symptoms present substantial temporal and geographical continuity, over two centuries and in many countries. There is contradictory information concerning the validity of FRS as a clinical indicator. Phenomenologically informed studies are needed to address this research gap.
Pork is one of the most consumed meats worldwide, yet, pork quality remains an issue for the industry, mainly because of flavour, colour and water holding capacity instabilities. Castration techniques combined with dietary supplementation with ractopamine hydrochloride (RAC) seem to be a tangible solution to deal with these issues. There is a lack of knowledge of how these techniques will impact the proteomic profile and, consequently, the meat quality. The main goal of this work was to study the proteomic profile of non-aged pork meat under different sexual conditions and RAC dietary supplementation, and how the combination of these two factors impacts meat quality attributes. Forty-eight animals were distributed in six treatments, three sexual conditions (females; surgically castrated males; immune castrated males) and two diets (with RAC inclusion or without). For proteomic analysis, a sample of the Longissimus dorsi muscle was collected 24 h after slaughter and analysed using one-dimensional SDS/PAGE. The ultimate pH and colour (L*, a*, b*) were measured in the carcasses after 24 h, then meat samples were collected to measure drip, cooking and thawing losses, as well as the shear force. The interaction between gender and diet affected the ultimate pH and the L* parameter. Meat tenderness was only influenced by diet. Twenty-seven protein bands were revealed by SDS/PAGE, six of them with the protein abundance affected by diet. In conclusion, the inclusion of dietary RAC caused differences in the pork meat proteome, and more studies are necessary to fully explore the proteins involved in these changes.
The COVID-19 pandemic is a global challenge for humanity, in which a large number of resources are invested to develop effective vaccines and treatments. At the same time, governments try to manage the spread of the disease while alleviating the strong impact derived from the slowdown in economic activity. Governments were forced to impose strict lockdown measures to tackle the pandemic. This significantly changed people’s mobility and habits, subsequently impacting the economy. In this context, the availability of tools to effectively monitor and quantify mobility was key for public institutions to decide which policies to implement and for how long. Telefonica has promoted different initiatives to offer governments mobility insights throughout many of the countries where it operates in Europe and Latin America. Mobility indicators with high spatial granularity and frequency of updates were successfully deployed in different formats. However, Telefonica faced many challenges (not only technical) to put these tools into service in a short timing: from reducing latency in insights to ensuring the security and privacy of information. In this article, we provide details on how Telefonica engaged with governments and other stakeholders in different countries as a response to the pandemic. We also cover the challenges faced and the shared learnings from Telefonica’s experience in those countries.
Neurobehavioral decision profiles have often been neglected in chronic diseases despite their direct impact on major public health issues such as treatment adherence. This remains a major concern in diabetes, despite intensive efforts and public awareness initiatives regarding its complications. We hypothesized that high rates of low adherence are related to risk-taking profiles associated with decision-making phenotypes. If this hypothesis is correct, it should be possible to define these endophenotypes independently based both on dynamic measures of metabolic control (HbA1C) and multidimensional behavioral profiles.
In this study, 91 participants with early-stage type 1 diabetes fulfilled a battery of self-reported real-world risk behaviors and they performed an experimental task, the Balloon Analogue Risk Task (BART).
K-means and two-step cluster analysis suggest a two-cluster solution providing information of distinct decision profiles (concerning multiple domains of risk-taking behavior) which almost perfectly match the biological partition, based on the division between stable or improving metabolic control (MC, N = 49) v. unstably high or deteriorating states (NoMC, N = 42). This surprising dichotomy of behavioral phenotypes predicted by the dynamics of HbA1C was further corroborated by standard statistical testing. Finally, the BART game enabled to identify groups differences in feedback learning and consequent behavioral choices under ambiguity, showing distinct group choice behavioral patterns.
These findings suggest that distinct biobehavioral endophenotypes can be related to the success of metabolic control. These findings also have strong implications for programs to improve patient adherence, directly addressing risk-taking profiles.
There is a significant difficulty in the engagement of people with dementia in therapeutic activities. Considering that stimulus attributes (e.g., content of a specific activity) seem to be determinant to achieve an expected engagement, innovative approaches are required.
characterise the engagement of people with dementia in serious traditional multidimensional games (sTMG), comparing with conventional therapy (CT) sessions.
Subjects with dementia were recruited in Alzheimer’s Portugal Foundation. Sociodemographic and clinical participants’ characteristics were collected, including classification of dementia severity using Mini-mental State Examination (MSE) and walking independence classification (dependent - someone needs supervision or human support to walk). Gerontologist, psychologist, occupational therapist and physiotherapist were invited to classify patients’ engagement in routine CT (i.e., cognitive therapy and exercise classes), according to 0 -10 scale (10 – successful engagement). Serious adaptations in TMG were implemented in 3 consecutive sessions (1 per week/ 45 min./session) and patient s engagement was rated in each session. Success index (number of subjects showing higher engagement in TMG/total participants) was calculated.
Thirteen participants (5 males; 79.23±8.39yrs; 15.76±9.22 MSE; 9 walk independently) were enrolled. Success index was 38%; comparing TMG with cognitive therapy and 31%, comparing to movement classes. Two patients with severe dementia and walking independency were more engaged in sTMG sessions (sTMG - 4;4; Cognitive therapy - 2;1; Exercises Classes). Four patients with moderate dementia and walking independency obtained worse engagement (sTMG –3;6;2;7; Cognitive therapy – 6;7;8;8 Exercises Classes – 4;6;7;9).
Our results showed that sTMG sessions had a positive impact in people with dementia, specifically in advanced/severe cases. In this respect, a previous study of Natalie et al., (2017) concluded that engagement was lower in cognitive activities for people with severe dementia, which can explain the higher engagement in sTMG sessions. Furthermore, Bier et al. (2008) enlightened that people with dementia in a moderate stage are characterised by emergent behavioural changes, which might difficult patients’ integration in new activities.
sTMG had a positive impact in the engagement of people with dementia. Specifically, for patients at middle stage of dementia, future studies include longer sTMG protocols, possibly providing better patients’ integration.
This contribution explores the potential of lead user research for early-stage designing for intelligent ecosystems through a literature review and a single case study concerning a lead user research initiative on blood pressure monitoring. The results suggest advantages of executing lead user research in early-stage designing for intelligent ecosystems from the points of view envisioning broad initial ecosystem boundaries, developing first intelligence components, and overcoming research challenges related to technical issues.
The co-infection between visceral leishmaniasis (VL) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) has increased in several countries in the world. The current serological tests are not suitable since they present low sensitivity to detect the most of VL/HIV cases, and a more precise diagnosis should be performed. In this context, in the present study, an immunoproteomics approach was performed using Leishmania infantum antigenic extracts and VL, HIV and VL/HIV patients sera, besides healthy subjects samples; aiming to identify antigenic markers for these clinical conditions. Results showed that 43 spots were recognized by antibodies in VL and VL/HIV sera, and 26 proteins were identified by mass spectrometry. Between them, β-tubulin was expressed, purified and tested in ELISA experiments as a proof of concept for validation of our immunoproteomics findings and results showed high sensitivity and specificity values to detect VL and VL/HIV patients. In conclusion, the identified proteins in the present work could be considered as candidates for future studies aiming to improvement of the diagnosis of VL and VL/HIV co-infection.
Risperidone (RISP) may induce both elevated prolactin (PRL) levels and weight gain. the aim of this study was to evaluate body weight and mass index (BMI), and PRL modifications in schizophrenic patients treated for 1 year with long-acting risperidone (LAR).
Body weight and BMI (calculated as weight in kilograms divide by height in meter squared) were determined at baseline and at endpoint in 19 schizophrenic patients (9 men and 10 women; mean[SEM] age 33.4[2.9] years). PRL levels were determined at baseline, after oral risperidone treatment (mean length of treatment: 79 days; mean dose: 5.8[0.5] mg daily) and during a 12 month treatment with LAR (mean dose: 50 mg every 2 weeks; PRL levels were measured before each injection).
At endpoint, a significant weight gain (Δweight: 8,1[1,4] kg) and BMI (ΔBMI: 2,9[0,5] kg/m²) was observed (both p< 0.0002). Compared with baseline, PRL levels were significantly increased (p< 0.0007; mean ΔPRL: 33 ng/ml). There was an association between ΔBMI>1,5 kg/m² and ΔPRL>40 ng/ ml (p< 0.04). Moreover ΔBMI was linked to the length of treatment (rho=0.47; n=19; p< 0.05).
Our results suggest a link between weight gain and long term hyperprolactinemia in patients treated with LAR. It has been hypothesized that PRL may have a role in the regulation of food intake by increasing leptin synthesis and secretion.
Between 1803 and 1805, Hölderlin translated and commented on nine fragments by Pindar that have come to be known in the critical literature as the Pindar Fragments. The last translated fragment concerns the fight between the Centaurs and the Lapiths at the wedding of Pirithous and Hippodame, after Eurytion, inebriated and driven by lust, attacks the bride. This mythological episode of strife and violence – the so-called centauromachy that ended with the defeat and expulsion of the centaurs – is translated, entitled and commented upon by Hölderlin as follows:
The man-conquering: after
The centaurs learnt
Of the honey-sweet wine, suddenly they thrust
The white milk with their hands, the table away, spontaneously,
And drinking out of silver horns
The concept of the centaurs is surely that of the spirit of a river insofar as it forms a path and a boundary, with violence, on the originally pathless and upwards growing earth.
Its image is therefore at places in nature where the shore is rich in cliffs and grottoes, especially at places where originally the river had to leave the mountainchain and had to cut across its direction.
Hence centaurs are also originally teachers of the science of nature, because nature can best be examined from that viewpoint.
In regions such as this the river had originally to wander about aimlessly before it could tear out a course. By this means there formed, as beside ponds, damp meadows and caves in the earth for suckling creatures, and meanwhile the centaur was a wild herdsman, like the Odyssean Cyclops. The waters longingly sought their direction. But the more firmly the dry land took shape upon the banks and secured its direction by means of the firmly rooting trees, by bushes and grapevines, the more the river also, which took its motion from the shape of the bank, had to gain its direction until, forced on from its origin, it broke through at a point where the mountains that enclosed it were most loosely connected.