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Two common approaches to identify subgroups of patients with bipolar disorder are clustering methodology (mixture analysis) based on the age of onset, and a birth cohort analysis. This study investigates if a birth cohort effect will influence the results of clustering on the age of onset, using a large, international database.
The database includes 4037 patients with a diagnosis of bipolar I disorder, previously collected at 36 collection sites in 23 countries. Generalized estimating equations (GEE) were used to adjust the data for country median age, and in some models, birth cohort. Model-based clustering (mixture analysis) was then performed on the age of onset data using the residuals. Clinical variables in subgroups were compared.
There was a strong birth cohort effect. Without adjusting for the birth cohort, three subgroups were found by clustering. After adjusting for the birth cohort or when considering only those born after 1959, two subgroups were found. With results of either two or three subgroups, the youngest subgroup was more likely to have a family history of mood disorders and a first episode with depressed polarity. However, without adjusting for birth cohort (three subgroups), family history and polarity of the first episode could not be distinguished between the middle and oldest subgroups.
These results using international data confirm prior findings using single country data, that there are subgroups of bipolar I disorder based on the age of onset, and that there is a birth cohort effect. Including the birth cohort adjustment altered the number and characteristics of subgroups detected when clustering by age of onset. Further investigation is needed to determine if combining both approaches will identify subgroups that are more useful for research.
The use of altrenogest (ALT) supplementation for oestrous synchronization improves subsequent reproductive performance of gilts and sows. However, the causes of this improvement in reproductive performance after ALT treatment are not fully/clearly understood. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of ALT supplementation for oestrous synchronization in gilts on the endometrial glands and embryonic development characteristics at 28 days of pregnancy. Pregnant gilts were divided into two experimental treatments: Control (did not receive ALT; n = 9 gilts) and ALT (ALT feeding at 20 mg/day for 18 days; n = 9 gilts). At 28 days of pregnancy, six gilts from each treatment were slaughtered, and reproductive tracts were immediately evaluated. There was no statistical difference (P > 0.05) between treatments regarding ovulation rate, number of embryos, number of vital embryos and number of non-vital embryos. Embryo weight, length and embryonic vesicle weight were lower in ALT treatment compared with Control (P < 0.01), and it was lower in the cervical uterine region compared with apex uterine region, respectively (P < 0.05). Higher values of gland duct area, gland duct perimeter, percentage of the glandular area and total endometrial area were observed in ALT treatment compared with Control (P < 0.05). The use of ALT during 18 days for oestrous synchronization in gilts increased the gland duct area, perimeter and total endometrial area but did not increase the embryo number and embryo size at day 28 of pregnancy.
Genetic variability in organisms with sexual reproduction is produced by a complex mechanism of cell division of the germ line cells known as meiosis. During meiosis, homologous chromosomes pair and exchange genetic material (meiotic recombination), process that is essential to complete the meiotic division and to produce variability. Homologous chromosome pairing is mediated by the synaptonemal complex (SC). The SC is a proteinaceous structure composed of two lateral elements (LEs) and a central region (CR). Any defect in SC structure impairs meiotic recombination leading to blockage of the cell division process and infertility1. The SC has been observed since the introduction of the electron microscope (EM) in the biological field and it has been reported to be present in almost all the organisms with sexual reproduction, conserving a very similar structure and organisation along the different species2,3. The classic approach to study the SC structure is to chemically fixate the sexual tissues (gonads), dehydrate and embedded them in plastic resins that provide a support for sample sectioning and observation under the EM. However, chemical fixation followed by dehydration is well known to produce artefacts in the structure of many biological samples. Recently, we have combined fluorescence activated cell sorting of cells with SCs with high-pressure freezing and freeze- substitution and have found that the structure of the CR looks different from that observed in chemically fixated samples. These data have prompted us to analyse the organization of the CR components under cryo-processing.
The regrowth of a C3 forage Stylosanthes capitata in a rain-fed field provided the weekly data collection in the southeast of Brazil during a heat event in autumn. A system named Trop-T-FACE simulated the free-air carbon dioxide enrichment and the enhanced temperature in four climatic regimes: current atmospheric conditions (Control), CO2 enrichment (600 ppm, eC), warming (2 °C above ambient canopy temperature, eT), and a combination of eC + eT. The area and biomass of foliage per shoot decreased, and the number of flowers per shoot and flowered ramification increased under single eC treatment besides the increment in palisade parenchyma of leaves. Increased investment in flowering in eC occurred notably when the soil water content was higher than 0.30 m3 m–3. Single eT treatment also impaired the area or biomass of foliage production per shoot, raised the shoot mortality, and promoted the increment of the spongy leaf parenchyma. There was some mitigation of the adverse effects of foliage production of eT or eC in eC + eT, but under this combined treatment, the shoot mortality also increased. Changes in leaf tissues under eC or eT or some mitigation of adverse effects in eC + eT did not offset the constraints on leaf growth per shoot. The harmful impact on foliage production by eC, eT, or eC + eT under rain-fed conditions indicated no advantages for feeding the livestock with the C3 forage S. capitata in expected climate change under field conditions.
Progesterone (P4) plays a key role in pregnancy establishment and maintenance; during early pregnancy, P4 stimulates the production and release of uterine secretions necessary for conceptus growth prior to implantation; therefore, exogenous P4 supplementation may improve embryo development. This study evaluated the effects of supplementation during early pregnancy with long-acting injectable progesterone or altrenogest on embryonic characteristics of sows and gilts. Thus, a total of 32 sows and 16 gilts were used. On day 6 of pregnancy sows and gilts were allocated to one of the following groups: non-supplemented; supplemented with 20 mg of altrenogest, orally, from days 6 to 12 of pregnancy; supplemented with 2.15 mg/kg of long-acting injectable progesterone on day 6 of pregnancy. Animals were killed on day 28 of pregnancy, and ovulation rate, embryo survival, embryo weight, crown-to-rump length, uterine glandular epithelium and endometrial vascularization were assessed. Treatments had no effect on pregnancy rate, embryo survival or endometrial vascular density (P > 0.05). Non-supplemented gilts presented larger and heavier embryos compared to gilts from supplemented groups (P < 0.05). Sows in the altrenogest group presented larger and heavier embryos compared to non-supplemented sows and sows supplemented with long-acting injectable progesterone. In conclusion, supplementation of sows and gilts with progestagen from day 6 of pregnancy can be used as a means to improve embryo survival without deleterious effects.
Although both obesity and ageing are risk factors for cognitive impairment, there is no evidence in Chile on how obesity levels are associated with cognitive function. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to investigate the association between adiposity levels and cognitive impairment in older Chilean adults. This cross-sectional study includes 1384 participants, over 60 years of age, from the Chilean National Health Survey 2009–2010. Cognitive impairment was evaluated using the Mini-Mental State Examination. BMI and waist circumference (WC) were used as measures of adiposity. Compared with people with a normal BMI, the odds of cognitive impairment were higher in participants who were underweight (OR 4·44; 95 % CI 2·43, 6·45; P < 0·0001), overweight (OR 1·86; 95 % CI 1·06, 2·66; P = 0·031) and obese (OR 2·26; 95 % CI 1·31, 3·21; P = 0·003). The associations were robust after adjustment for confounding variables. Similar results were observed for WC. Low and high levels of adiposity are associated with an increased likelihood of cognitive impairment in older adults in Chile.
The use of additives such as ractopamine (Rac) in pregnant sows during early-mid pregnancy is an alternative to increase foetal and progeny growth and development. However, Rac supplementation in finishing pigs can lead to behavioural and physiological changes similar to the typical stress responses. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of dietary supplementation with Rac in pregnant sows from day 25 to 50 of gestation (pre-hyperplastic stage) on piglet’s vitality, blood parameters, number, diameter and perimeter of muscle fibres in semitendinosus muscle and developmental characteristics of piglets at birth to weaning. Forty-one hybrid sows were divided into three dietary treatments: (1) control diet without Rac (control), (2) addition of 10 mg/kg of Rac (Rac10) and (3) addition of 20 mg/kg of Rac (Rac20). Higher numbers of low-vitality piglets (P<0.05) were observed in Rac-fed sows, regardless of dose, compared with the control group. Very low-density lipoprotein levels were lower in the Rac10 group when compared with the Rac20 group at day 21. Haematocrit was greater, and the mean corpuscular haemoglobin concentration was lower in piglets from Rac-fed sows. No significant statistical differences were detected regarding piglets body weight, average daily gain, blood gasometry, complete blood count and muscle fibre measurements in semitendinosus muscle. The use of Rac in pregnant sows reduced the vitality parameters of piglets but did not improve the performance from birth until weaning and did not negatively influence the haematological parameter and lipid metabolism.
We re-analyzed OJ287 in 120 Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA, MOJAVE) observations (at 15 GHz) covering the time span between Apr. 1995 and Apr. 2017. We find that the radio jet motion over the sky is consistent with a precessing and nutating jet source. The variability of the radio flux-density can be explained by Doppler beaming due to a change in the viewing angle. We suggest that part of the optical emission is due to synchrotron emission related to the jet radiation. We find a strikingly similar scaling for the timescales for precession and nutation as indicated for SS433 with a factor of roughly 50 times longer in OJ287.
Universal screening for postpartum depression is recommended in many countries. Knowledge of whether the disclosure of depressive symptoms in the postpartum period differs across cultures could improve detection and provide new insights into the pathogenesis. Moreover, it is a necessary step to evaluate the universal use of screening instruments in research and clinical practice. In the current study we sought to assess whether the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS), the most widely used screening tool for postpartum depression, measures the same underlying construct across cultural groups in a large international dataset.
Ordinal regression and measurement invariance were used to explore the association between culture, operationalized as education, ethnicity/race and continent, and endorsement of depressive symptoms using the EPDS on 8209 new mothers from Europe and the USA.
Education, but not ethnicity/race, influenced the reporting of postpartum depression [difference between robust comparative fit indexes (∆*CFI) < 0.01]. The structure of EPDS responses significantly differed between Europe and the USA (∆*CFI > 0.01), but not between European countries (∆*CFI < 0.01).
Investigators and clinicians should be aware of the potential differences in expression of phenotype of postpartum depression that women of different educational backgrounds may manifest. The increasing cultural heterogeneity of societies together with the tendency towards globalization requires a culturally sensitive approach to patients, research and policies, that takes into account, beyond rhetoric, the context of a person's experiences and the context in which the research is conducted.
The Antarctic Roadmap Challenges (ARC) project identified critical requirements to deliver high priority Antarctic research in the 21st century. The ARC project addressed the challenges of enabling technologies, facilitating access, providing logistics and infrastructure, and capitalizing on international co-operation. Technological requirements include: i) innovative automated in situ observing systems, sensors and interoperable platforms (including power demands), ii) realistic and holistic numerical models, iii) enhanced remote sensing and sensors, iv) expanded sample collection and retrieval technologies, and v) greater cyber-infrastructure to process ‘big data’ collection, transmission and analyses while promoting data accessibility. These technologies must be widely available, performance and reliability must be improved and technologies used elsewhere must be applied to the Antarctic. Considerable Antarctic research is field-based, making access to vital geographical targets essential. Future research will require continent- and ocean-wide environmentally responsible access to coastal and interior Antarctica and the Southern Ocean. Year-round access is indispensable. The cost of future Antarctic science is great but there are opportunities for all to participate commensurate with national resources, expertise and interests. The scope of future Antarctic research will necessitate enhanced and inventive interdisciplinary and international collaborations. The full promise of Antarctic science will only be realized if nations act together.
In traditional transit timing variations (TTVs) analysis of multi-planetary systems, the individual TTVs are first derived from transit fitting and later modelled using n-body dynamic simulations to constrain planetary masses. We show that fitting simultaneously the transit light curves with the system dynamics (photo-dynamical model) increases the precision of the TTV measurements and helps constrain the system architecture. We exemplify the advantages of applying this photo-dynamical model to a multi-planetary system found in K2 data very close to 3:2 mean motion resonance, K2-19. In this case the period of the larger TTV variations (libration period) is much longer (>1.5 years) than the duration of the K2 observations (80 days). However, our method allows to detect the short period TTVs produced by the orbital conjunctions between the planets that in turn permits to uniquely characterise the system. Therefore, our method can be used to constrain the masses of near-resonant systems even when the full libration curve is not observed.
We describe the preliminary design of a magnetograph and visible-light imager instrument to study the solar dynamo processes through observations of the solar surface magnetic field distribution. The instrument will provide measurements of the vector magnetic field and of the line-of-sight velocity in the solar photosphere. As the magnetic field anchored at the solar surface produces most of the structures and energetic events in the upper solar atmosphere and significantly influences the heliosphere, the development of this instrument plays an important role in reaching the scientific goals of The Atmospheric and Space Science Coordination (CEA) at the Brazilian National Institute for Space Research (INPE). In particular, the CEA's space weather program will benefit most from the development of this technology. We expect that this project will be the starting point to establish a strong research program on Solar Physics in Brazil. Our main aim is acquiring progressively the know-how to build state-of-the-art solar vector magnetograph and visible-light imagers for space-based platforms to contribute to the efforts of the solar-terrestrial physics community to address the main unanswered questions on how our nearby Star works.
Antarctic and Southern Ocean science is vital to understanding natural variability, the processes that govern global change and the role of humans in the Earth and climate system. The potential for new knowledge to be gained from future Antarctic science is substantial. Therefore, the international Antarctic community came together to ‘scan the horizon’ to identify the highest priority scientific questions that researchers should aspire to answer in the next two decades and beyond. Wide consultation was a fundamental principle for the development of a collective, international view of the most important future directions in Antarctic science. From the many possibilities, the horizon scan identified 80 key scientific questions through structured debate, discussion, revision and voting. Questions were clustered into seven topics: i) Antarctic atmosphere and global connections, ii) Southern Ocean and sea ice in a warming world, iii) ice sheet and sea level, iv) the dynamic Earth, v) life on the precipice, vi) near-Earth space and beyond, and vii) human presence in Antarctica. Answering the questions identified by the horizon scan will require innovative experimental designs, novel applications of technology, invention of next-generation field and laboratory approaches, and expanded observing systems and networks. Unbiased, non-contaminating procedures will be required to retrieve the requisite air, biota, sediment, rock, ice and water samples. Sustained year-round access to Antarctica and the Southern Ocean will be essential to increase winter-time measurements. Improved models are needed that represent Antarctica and the Southern Ocean in the Earth System, and provide predictions at spatial and temporal resolutions useful for decision making. A co-ordinated portfolio of cross-disciplinary science, based on new models of international collaboration, will be essential as no scientist, programme or nation can realize these aspirations alone.
A significant fraction (~ 30%) of the gamma-ray sources detected by the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope is still of unknown origin, being not yet associated with counterparts at lower energies. Many unidentified gamma-ray sources (UGSs) could be blazars, the largest identified population of extragalactic gamma-ray sources and the rarest class of active galactic nuclei. In particular, it has been found that blazars occupy a defined region in WISE three dimensional color space, well separated from that occupied by other sources in which thermal emission prevails. For farther sources with weaker IR emission, additional informations can be obtained combining WISE data with X-ray or radio emission. Alternatively, the low-frequency radio emission can be used for identifying potential gamma-ray candidate blazars. However, optical spectroscopic observations represent the tell-tale tool to confirm the exact nature of these sources. To this end, an extensive observational campaign has been performed with several optical telescopes, aimed at pinpointing the exact nature of gamma-ray candidate blazars selected with the different selection methods mentioned above. The results of this campaign lead to the discovery of 60 new gamma-ray blazars, thus confirming the effectiveness of these selection criteria.
Introduction. The nutritional and functional qualities of wild and
cultivated Mexican serviceberry have not yet been reported. This species could have
similar potential for commercialization to that of Saskatoon berry (Amelanchier
alnifolia Nutt.). Materials and methods. Wild and cultivated
fruits at two maturity stages were assessed for CIE Lab color, fruit size, titratable
acidity and total soluble solids. Also, chemical composition and mineral contents were
determined. In addition, vitamin C and simple phenols were assessed. Total soluble
phenols, condensed tannins and anthocyanins as well as Trolox antioxidant activity and
oxygen radical antioxidant activity were determined. Results. Fruit size,
titratable acidity, total soluble solids, iron and simple phenols were higher in fruits of
cultivated plants than in those of wild plants. Total fiber, calcium, vitamin C, total
soluble phenols and condensed tannins were higher in wild fruits. Wild and cultivated
serviceberry showed higher Trolox antioxidant activity compared with oxygen radical
antioxidant activity. Caffeic, chlorogenic, coumaric and syringic acids and rutin were the
predominant simple phenolics; they comprised from 59.3% (cultivated overripe fruit) to
76.9% (wild ripe fruit) of the sum of simple phenolics. The antioxidant activity of wild
and cultivated fruit (258.3–699.2 mmol·kg–1, fw) is up to 3.8 times higher compared with
those of fruits commonly consumed. Conclusion. Contents of antioxidant
compounds and the outstanding antioxidant activities of wild and cultivated Mexican
serviceberry make this species a natural resource that could contribute to health.
In this paper, we give lower bounds for the fundamental tone of open sets in minimal submanifolds immersed into warped product spaces of type Nn ×f Qq, where f ∈ C∞(N). This setting allows us to deal, among other things, with minimal submanifolds bounded by cylinders, cones, spheres and pseudo-hyperbolic spaces where most of these examples are not covered in the literature. Applications also include the study of the essential spectrum of hyperbolic graphs over compact regions of the boundary at infinity.