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This communication assesses the use of a portable near infrared (NIR) instrument to measure quantitative (fatty acid profile) properties and qualitative (‘Premium’ and ‘Non-premium’) categories of individual Iberian pork carcasses at the slaughterhouse. Acorn-fed Iberian pigs have more unsaturated fats than pigs fed conventional compound feed. Recent advances in miniaturisation have led to a number of handheld NIR devices being developed, allowing processing decisions to be made earlier, significantly reducing time and costs. The most common methods used for assessing quality and authenticity of Iberian hams are analysis of the fatty acid composition of subcutaneous fat using gas chromatography and DNA analysis. In this study, NIR calibrations for fatty acids and classification as premium or non-premium ham, based on carcass fat measured in situ, were developed using a portable NIR spectrometer. The accuracy of the quantitative equations was evaluated through the standard error of cross validation or standard error of prediction of 0.84 for palmitic acid (C16:0), 0.94 for stearic acid (C18:0), 1.47 for oleic acid (C18:1) and 0.58 for linoleic acid (C18:2). Qualitative calibrations provided acceptable results, with up to 98% of samples (n = 234) correctly classified with probabilities ⩾0.9. Results indicated a portable NIR instrument has the potential to be used to measure quality and authenticity of Iberian pork carcasses.
The disease caused by the influenza virus is a global public health problem due to its high rates of morbidity and mortality. Thus, analysis of the information generated by epidemiological surveillance systems has vital importance for health decision making. A retrospective analysis was performed using data generated by the four molecular diagnostic laboratories of the Mexican Social Security Institute between 2010 and 2016. Demographics, influenza positivity, seasonality, treatment choices and vaccination status analyses were performed for the vaccine according to its composition for each season. In all cases, both the different influenza subtypes and different age groups were considered separately. The circulation of A/H1N1pdm09 (48.7%), influenza A/H3N2 (21.1%), influenza B (12.6%), influenza A not subtyped (11%) and influenza A/H1N1 (6.6%) exhibited well-defined annual seasonality between November and March, and there were significant increases in the number of cases every 2 years. An inadequate use of oseltamivir was determined in 38% of cases, and the vaccination status in general varied between 12.1 and 18.5% depending on the season. Our results provide current information about influenza in Mexico and demonstrate the need to update both operational case definitions and medical practice guidelines to reduce the inappropriate use of antibiotics and antivirals.
Circulating 25-hydroxy vitamin D (25(OH)D) is related to decreased rates of gastrointestinal and ear infections in school-age children. Vitamin D-binding protein (DBP) transports 25(OH)D and exerts immunological functions; however, it is unknown whether DBP is associated with infectious morbidity in children. We quantified plasma DBP concentrations in 540 school-age children at the time of recruitment into a cohort study in Bogotá, Colombia and obtained daily information on infectious morbidity symptoms and doctor visits during the school year. We compared the incidence rates of gastrointestinal and respiratory symptoms across quartiles of DBP concentration by estimating adjusted incidence rate ratios (IRRs) with 95% confidence interval (CI). We also estimated the per cent of the associations between DBP and morbidity that were mediated through 25(OH)D using a counterfactual frame. Mean ± s.d. DBP concentration was 2650 ± 1145 nmol/l. DBP was inversely associated with the rates of diarrhoea with vomiting (IRR for quartiles 2–4 vs. 1 = 0.48; 95% CI 0.25–0.92; P = 0.03) and earache/ear discharge with fever (IRR for quartiles 2–4 vs. 1 = 0.29; 95% CI 0.12–0.71; P = 0.006). The DBP–morbidity associations were not mediated through 25(OH)D. We conclude that plasma DBP predicts lower incidence of gastrointestinal and ear infections in school-age children independent of 25(OH)D.
The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence and risk factors for human papillomavirus (HPV) infection in the Southern region of the State of Bahia, evaluating the performance of alternative complementary methods for cervical lesion detection. Cervical samples from women who attended healthcare units were collected and diagnosed by visual inspection, cervical cytology and nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Moreover, hemi-nested PCR was performed to detect different HPV genotypes. The prevalence of HPV infection was 47·7%, with genotype 16 detected in most cases. Infection was associated with dyspareunia and bleeding (P < 0·001, odds ratio (OR) 5·6, 95% confidence interval (CI) 2·815–11·14) and hormonal contraceptive use (P = 0·007, OR 2·33, 95% CI 1·25–4·34). There was a positive correlation between positive PCR and positive visual inspection, cervical cytology and symptoms reported. Furthermore, visual inspection was twice as specific, and had a greater positive predictive value than cytology. We showed a high prevalence of HPV infection in Southern Bahia, with HPV 16 being the most common type, and visual inspection being most effective at detecting HPV lesions, corroborating the suggestion that it can be applied in routine gynecologic examinations for low-income populations.
Castration is a routine procedure for male farm animals. The ethics of castration are widely debated because the procedure may potentially result in pain and distress. The indications for early castration in farmed guanacos are: 1) prevention of aberrant behaviour in human-imprinted males, 2) elimination of inter-male aggression, so that males may be housed together or with females, 3) avoidance of accidental breeding (Fowler, 1998). In addition, it has been argued (Molony and Kent, 1997) that to study the pain response to castration is ethically acceptable as the overall welfare of the animal is improved by the procedure. Guanaco farming has been recently established in South America, and there is therefore little information available on how guanacos respond to castration. The purpose of this study was to assess pain in farmed guanacos. The hypothesis was that pain experienced by guanacos due to castration may be displayed in behavioural and physiological changes, as has been reported in lambs, calves and piglets. The study was carried out in 2001 on four-month-old farmed male guanaco. Changes in plasma cortisol concentration and the frequency of specific daytime behavioural postures and activities following castration are reported.
Research suggests that lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) adolescents have a higher risk of suicidal behaviours than their heterosexual peers, but little is known about specific risk factors.
To assess sexual orientation as a risk factor for suicidal behaviours, and to identify other risk factors among LGB adolescents and young adults.
A systematic search was made of six databases up to June 2015, including a grey literature search. Population-based longitudinal studies considering non-clinical populations aged 12–26 years and assessing being LGB as a risk factor for suicidal behaviour compared with being heterosexual, or evaluating risk factors for suicidal behaviour within LGB populations, were included. Random effect models were used in meta-analysis.
Sexual orientation was significantly associated with suicide attempts in adolescents and youths (OR=2.26, 95% CI 1.60–3.20). Gay or bisexual men were more likely to report suicide attempts compared with heterosexual men (OR=2.21, 95% CI 1.21–4.04). Based on two studies, a non-significant positive association was found between depression and suicide attempts in LGB groups.
Sexual orientation is associated with a higher risk of suicide attempt in young people. Further research is needed to assess completed suicide, and specific risk factors affecting the LGB population.
Anxiety disorders are common, and cognitive–behavioural therapy (CBT) is a first-line treatment. Candidate gene studies have suggested a genetic basis to treatment response, but findings have been inconsistent.
To perform the first genome-wide association study (GWAS) of psychological treatment response in children with anxiety disorders (n = 980).
Presence and severity of anxiety was assessed using semi-structured interview at baseline, on completion of treatment (post-treatment), and 3 to 12 months after treatment completion (follow-up). DNA was genotyped using the Illumina Human Core Exome-12v1.0 array. Linear mixed models were used to test associations between genetic variants and response (change in symptom severity) immediately post-treatment and at 6-month follow-up.
No variants passed a genome-wide significance threshold (P=5×10–8) in either analysis. Four variants met criteria for suggestive significance (P<5×10–6) in association with response post-treatment, and three variants in the 6-month follow-up analysis.
This is the first genome-wide therapygenetic study. It suggests no common variants of very high effect underlie response to CBT. Future investigations should maximise power to detect single-variant and polygenic effects by using larger, more homogeneous cohorts.
I deficiency is still a worldwide public health problem, with children being especially vulnerable. No nationwide study had been conducted to assess the I status of Spanish children, and thus an observational, multicentre and cross-sectional study was conducted in Spain to assess the I status and thyroid function in schoolchildren aged 6–7 years. The median urinary I (UI) and thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) levels in whole blood were used to assess the I status and thyroid function, respectively. A FFQ was used to determine the consumption of I-rich foods. A total of 1981 schoolchildren (52 % male) were included. The median UI was 173 μg/l, and 17·9 % of children showed UI<100 μg/l. The median UI was higher in males (180·8 v. 153·6 μg/l; P<0·001). Iodised salt (IS) intake at home was 69·8 %. IS consumption and intakes of ≥2 glasses of milk or 1 cup of yogurt/d were associated with significantly higher median UI. Median TSH was 0·90 mU/l and was higher in females (0·98 v. 0·83; P<0·001). In total, 0·5 % of children had known hypothyroidism (derived from the questionnaire) and 7·6 % had TSH levels above reference values. Median TSH was higher in schoolchildren with family history of hypothyroidism. I intake was adequate in Spanish schoolchildren. However, no correlation was found between TSH and median UI in any geographical area. The prevalence of TSH above reference values was high and its association with thyroid autoimmunity should be determined. Further assessment of thyroid autoimmunity in Spanish schoolchildren is desirable.
Binary toxin (BT) has been associated with strains causing more severe Clostridium difficile infection (CDI), such as ribotype 027. Data on the outcome of patients having BT present in ribotypes other than 027 are scarce. Our objective was to investigate the association between BT isolates and outcome of CDI in a non-027 ribotype setting. We prospectively included CDI episodes (January–June 2013 and March–June 2014) from symptomatic patients aged >2 years. Epidemiological and clinical data were recorded. BT genes were detected using multiplex PCR. During the study period, we identified 326 episodes of CDI, of which 319 were available for molecular analysis. Of these, 54 (16·9%) were caused by C. difficile strains with BT. Most (90·7%) isolates with BT were ribotype 078/126. CDI patients with BT-positive strains did not differ from those with BT-negative strains in terms of recurrence (13·0% vs. 15·5%, P = 0·835), treatment failure (0·0% vs. 2·3%, P = 0·594), overall mortality (11·1% vs. 9·1%, P = 0·612), or CDI-related mortality (0·0% vs. 1·9%, P = 0·612). Multivariate regression revealed no association between BT and poor outcome. In conclusion, in a non-027 setting, we found that most BT isolates were 078/126 and were not associated with poor outcome.
The in vitro leishmanicidal activity of a series of imidazole-containing phthalazine derivatives 1–4 was tested on Leishmania infantum, Leishmania braziliensis and Leishmania donovani parasites, and their cytotoxicity on J774·2 macrophage cells was also measured. All compounds tested showed selectivity indexes higher than that of the reference drug glucantime for the three Leishmania species, and the less bulky monoalkylamino substituted derivatives 2 and 4 were clearly more effective than their bisalkylamino substituted counterparts 1 and 3. Both infection rate measures and ultrastructural alterations studies confirmed that 2 and 4 were highly leishmanicidal and induced extensive parasite cell damage. Modifications to the excretion products of parasites treated with 2 and 4 were also consistent with substantial cytoplasmic alterations. On the other hand, the most active compounds 2 and 4 were potent inhibitors of iron superoxide dismutase enzyme (Fe-SOD) in the three species considered, whereas their impact on human CuZn-SOD was low. Molecular modelling suggests that 2 and 4 could deactivate Fe-SOD due to a sterically favoured enhanced ability to interact with the H-bonding net that supports the antioxidant features of the enzyme.
The dietary patterns of immigrants usually change with the duration of residence and progressively resemble those of the host country. However, very few studies have investigated individuals migrating to countries with a high-quality diet, such as the Mediterranean diet (MD), and none has yet focused on Latin-American immigrants. The present study examined the association of the duration of residence with obesity-related eating habits and dietary patterns among Latin-American immigrants residing in Spain. A cross-sectional study was conducted in 2008–10 in a representative sample of the adult population residing in Spain. Adherence to the MD was defined as a MD Adherence Screener score ≥ 9. Analyses were conducted by including 419 individuals aged 18–64 years born in Latin-American countries. Compared with immigrants residing in Spain for < 5 years, those residing for ≥ 10 years accounted for a lower percentage of individuals who habitually ate at fast-food restaurants and never trimmed visible fat from meat. Moreover, these immigrants were found to have a lower intake of sugary beverages and a higher intake of Na, saturated fat, fibre, olive oil, vegetables and fish and to more frequently strictly adhere to the MD. A longer duration of residence in Spain was found to be associated with both healthy and unhealthy changes in some eating habits and dietary patterns among Latin-American immigrants. Some of the healthy changes observed contrasted the ‘Westernisation’ of the diet reported in studies conducted in other Western countries. The results of the present study support the role of the food environment of the host country in the modification of the dietary patterns of immigrants.
A large-scale mass vaccination campaign was carried out in Java, Indonesia in an attempt to control outbreaks of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in backyard flocks and commercial smallholder poultry. Sero-monitoring was conducted in mass vaccination and control areas to assess the proportion of the target population with antibodies against HPAI and Newcastle disease (ND). There were four rounds of vaccination, and samples were collected after each round resulting in a total of 27 293 samples. Sampling was performed irrespective of vaccination status. In the mass vaccination areas, 20–45% of poultry sampled had a positive titre to H5 after each round of vaccination, compared to 2–3% in the control group. In the HPAI + ND vaccination group, 12–25% of the population had positive ND titres, compared to 5–13% in the areas without ND vaccination. The level of seropositivity varied by district, age of the bird, and species (ducks vs. chickens).