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Young people with 22q11.2 deletion syndrome (22q11.2DS) are at high risk for neurodevelopmental disorders. Sleep problems may play a role in this risk but their prevalence, nature and links to psychopathology and cognitive function remain undescribed in this population.
Sleep problems, psychopathology, developmental coordination and cognitive function were assessed in 140 young people with 22q11.2DS (mean age = 10.1, s.d. = 2.46) and 65 unaffected sibling controls (mean age = 10.8, s.d.SD = 2.26). Primary carers completed questionnaires screening for the children's developmental coordination and autism spectrum disorder.
Sleep problems were identified in 60% of young people with 22q11.2DS compared to 23% of sibling controls (OR 5.00, p < 0.001). Two patterns best-described sleep problems in 22q11.2DS: restless sleep and insomnia. Restless sleep was linked to increased ADHD symptoms (OR 1.16, p < 0.001) and impaired executive function (OR 0.975, p = 0.013). Both patterns were associated with elevated symptoms of anxiety disorder (restless sleep: OR 1.10, p = 0.006 and insomnia: OR 1.07, p = 0.045) and developmental coordination disorder (OR 0.968, p = 0.0023, and OR 0.955, p = 0.009). The insomnia pattern was also linked to elevated conduct disorder symptoms (OR 1.53, p = 0.020).
Clinicians and carers should be aware that sleep problems are common in 22q11.2DS and index psychiatric risk, cognitive deficits and motor coordination problems. Future studies should explore the physiology of sleep and the links with the neurodevelopment in these young people.
Aberrant sensitivity to social reward may be an important contributor to abnormal social behavior that is a core feature of schizophrenia. The neuropeptide oxytocin impacts the salience of social information across species, but its effect on social reward in schizophrenia is unknown.
We used a competitive economic game and computational modeling to examine behavioral dynamics and oxytocin effects on sensitivity to social reward among 39 men with schizophrenia and 54 matched healthy controls. In a randomized, double-blind study, participants received one dose of oxytocin (40 IU) or placebo and completed a 35-trial Auction Game that quantifies preferences for monetary v. social reward. We analyzed bidding behavior using multilevel linear mixed models and reinforcement learning models.
Bidding was motivated by preferences for both monetary and social reward in both groups, but bidding dynamics differed: patients initially overbid less compared to controls, and across trials, controls decreased their bids while patients did not. Oxytocin administration was associated with sustained overbidding across trials, particularly in patients. This drug effect was driven by a stronger preference for winning the auction, regardless of monetary consequences. Learning rate and response variability did not differ between groups or drug condition, suggesting that differences in bidding derive primarily from differences in the subjective value of social rewards.
Our findings suggest that schizophrenia is associated with diminished motivation for social reward that may be increased by oxytocin administration.
The angular dependence of Total-reflection X-Ray Fluorescence intensities can behave in various ways. The variety is discussed by examining the x-ray intensity distribution in the material under investigation. It is shown that for thin layers on solids, interference fringes are present due to x-ray standing waves. This phenomenon is exploited to determine the depth distribution of elements in layered specimens.
In equines, Cr2O3 is widely accepted as an indigestible marker, but there are health concerns regarding the carcinogenic properties of Cr2O3. Recently, TiO2 has been suggested to be an alternative digestibility marker in equines. However, a comparison between Cr2O3 and TiO2 has not been made in equines. Six Welsh pony geldings (initial BW: 254±3 kg; 7 years of age) fed chopped alfalfa hay were used to evaluate the use of TiO2 (Ti) and Cr2O3 (Cr) as markers for calculating apparent digestibility and to investigate the effect of frequency of marker administration on the measurement of digestibility values. Diets contained 4.65 kg dry matter (DM) chopped alfalfa hay supplemented with minerals, vitamins, TiO2 (3.3 g Ti/day) and Cr2O3 (3.2 g Cr/day). Ponies were dosed with either 3.3 g Ti and 3.2 g Cr once daily (DF1) or with 1.65 g Ti and 1.60 g Cr twice daily (DF2). After adaptation to the diets and procedures for 14 days, voluntary voided faeces were collected quantitatively over 7 days and analysed for moisture, ash, Ti and Cr. Apparent total tract DM digestibility (DMD) and organic matter digestibility (OMD) were calculated using the total faecal collection (TFC) and marker method (Ti and Cr). The overall mean cumulative faecal recovery of Cr and Ti (as % of intake) were 102.0% and 96.6%, respectively. Mean daily faecal recoveries of Cr as well as of Ti were not different (P=0.323; P=0.808, respectively) between treatments. Overall daily faecal recovery of Cr differed (P=0.019) from 100% when the marker was dosed once daily, whereas overall daily faecal recovery was similar to 100% for both administration frequencies when Ti was used as a marker. For both markers, the coefficient of variation of the mean faecal marker recovery between horses was lower when the markers were administrated twice per day. Across treatments, cumulative DMD and OMD estimated with Ti were similar (P=0.345; P=0.418, respectively) compared with those values determined by TFC method. When Cr was used, the calculated cumulative DMD tended (P=0.097) to be greater compared with those estimated with TFC, and cumulative OMD values were overestimated (P=0.013). Orally supplemented Ti recovery in the faeces of ponies fed chopped alfalfa hay with Ti administered once or twice daily was close to 100%, making it the preferred marker for digestibility trials in equines.
Forage maize (Zea mays L.) is often grown year after year on the same land on many intensive dairy farms in north-west Europe. This results in agronomical problems such as weed resistance and decline of soil quality, which may be solved by ley-arable farming. In the current study, forage maize was grown at different nitrogen (N) fertilization levels for 3 years on permanent arable land and on temporary arable land after ploughing out different types of grass–clover swards. Swards differed in management (grazing or cutting) and age (temporary or permanent). Maize yield and soil residual mineral N content were measured after the maize harvest. There was no effect on maize yield of the management of ploughed-out grass–clover swards but a clear effect of the age of grass–clover swards. The N fertilizer replacement value (NFRV) of all ploughed grass–clover swards was >170 kg N/ha in the first year after ploughing. In the third year after ploughing, NFRV of the permanent sward still exceeded 200 kg N/ha, whereas that of the temporary swards decreased to 30 kg N/ha on average. Soil residual nitrate (NO3−) remained below the local, legal threshold of 90 kg NO3− N/ha except for the ploughed-out permanent sward in the third year after ploughing (166 kg NO3− N/ha). The current study highlights the potential of forage maize – ley rotations in saving fertilizer N. This is beneficial both for the environment and for the profitability of dairy production in north-western Europe.
Introduction: We sought to characterize the management of uncomplicated subcutaneous abscesses (SA) by Canadian emergency physicians (EPs). Methods: Cross-sectional study of CAEP membership. Subjects were emailed an invitation to an online survey, and two biweekly reminders. Wilcoxon rank sum test was used for association with age, and Chi Square and Fischers exact test were used for binary variables. Results: Response rate was 21.2 % (392 Reponses / 1850 surveyed). Duration of practice ranged from 30.2 % practising <= 5 years, to 25.7% practising >= 20 years. Teaching setting was described in 89.1% of responses. Irrigation with saline is performed by 57.1 % of EPs, tap water 2.1 %, or disinfectant 2.1% of EPs, with 39.1% not doing any irrigation. Approximately half (49.2%) typically do not pack or close wounds, while 40.6 % employ ribbon or gauze packing, and 1.6 % primary closure. Antibiotics are generally not prescribed by 16.8%. EPs prescribe antibiotics when suspecting surrounding cellulitis (84.2%), immunocompromised host (51.6%), MRSA (28.9%), or recurrence within 30 days (27.5 %). Cultures are taken almost always by 28.2%, half the time or less by 33.9%, never by 11.6%, and if MRSA is suspected by 33.9%. Follow-up instructions are with FP (56.7%), ED at 24 hours (5.91 %) or 48 hours (17.74 %), or not required (24.7%). Most EPs (90.9%) report having no standardized protocol for abscess management in their ED. EPs with fewer years in practice are more likely to make cruciate incisions (p=0.009), to generally not irrigate incisions (p=0.02), to culture if MRSA is suspected (p=0.02), and to prescribe antibiotics when suspecting MRSA (p=0.02) immune-compromised host (p=0.03), and in case of spontaneous treatment failure or recurrence (p=0.0004). EPs with more years in practice are more likely to pack with ribbon gauze (p=0.06), and to almost always swab for C&S (p=0.04) Conclusion: Practice variability and deviations from practice guidelines (i.e. IDSA, Choosing Wisely Canada) are noted. A knowledge translation exercise based on the guidelines for Canadian EPs would be useful.
According to a recent study, ratings on the Psychotic Depression Assessment Scale (PDAS) obtained via a dedicated semi-structured interview are valid measures of the severity of psychotic depression. This study aimed to further test the validity, scalability and responsiveness of the PDAS in older adults using independent ratings on the Clinical Global Impression Scale – Severity (CGI-S) and the Montgomery-Asberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS) as references.
Ratings were performed at admission and discharge at two old age psychiatric wards in Flanders, Belgium. In total, 62 older adults (mean age: 74.3 years) with psychotic depression were included. The PDAS was rated by trained nurses using the semi-structured PDAS interview. Senior psychiatrists scored the participants on the CGI-S. Psychologists or experienced nurses rated participants on the MADRS. Clinical validity was assessed by correlating the PDAS total scores with CGI-S ratings and MADRS total scores. Mokken analysis was performed to assess the scalability of the PDAS. Responsiveness was assessed by comparing the proportion of participants in remission (PDAS total score <8 at study baseline and endpoint).
The Spearman correlation coefficients were 0.76 and 0.79 for the PDAS versus CGI-S and PDAS versus MADRS, respectively. The Mokken analysis yielded a Loevinger coefficient of 0.46, which is indicative of scalability. At admission, no participants met the PDAS remission criterion. At discharge, 54% (95% confidence interval: 47%–60%) of the patients met this criterion.
The PDAS appears to be a clinically valid, scalable and responsive measure of the severity of psychotic depression in older adults.
The aim of this study was to explore the support needs of Dutch informal caregivers of patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).
Individual semi-structured interviews were conducted with 21 caregivers of ALS patients. Audio-taped interviews were transcribed and data were analyzed thematically.
A total of four global support needs emerged: “more personal time”, “assistance in applying for resources”, “counseling”, and “peer contact”. Despite their needs, caregivers are reluctant to apply for and accept support. They saw their own needs as secondary to the needs of the patients.
Significance of results
ALS seems to lead to an intensive caregiving situation with multiple needs emerging in a short period. This study offers targets for the development of supportive interventions. A proactive approach seems essential, acknowledging the importance of the role of the caregivers in the care process at an early stage, informing them about the risk of burden, monitoring their wellbeing, and repeatedly offering support opportunities. Using e-health may help tailor interventions to the caregivers’ support needs.
Introduction of biofortified cassava as school lunch can increase vitamin A intake, but may increase risk of other deficiencies due to poor nutrient profile of cassava. We assessed the potential effect of introducing a yellow cassava-based school lunch combined with additional food-based recommendations (FBR) on vitamin A and overall nutrient adequacy using Optifood (linear programming tool).
Cross-sectional study to assess dietary intakes (24 h recall) and derive model parameters (list of foods consumed, median serving sizes, food and food (sub)group frequency distributions, food cost). Three scenarios were modelled, namely daily diet including: (i) no school lunch; (ii) standard 5d school lunch with maize/beans; and (iii) 5d school lunch with yellow cassava. Each scenario and scenario 3 with additional FBR were assessed on overall nutrient adequacy using recommended nutrient intakes (RNI).
Primary-school children (n 150) aged 7–9 years.
Best food pattern of yellow cassava-based lunch scenario achieved 100 % RNI for six nutrients compared with no lunch (three nutrients) or standard lunch (five nutrients) scenario. FBR with yellow cassava and including small dried fish improved nutrient adequacy, but could not ensure adequate intake of fat (52 % of average requirement), riboflavin (50 % RNI), folate (59 % RNI) and vitamin A (49 % RNI).
Introduction of yellow cassava-based school lunch complemented with FBR potentially improved vitamin A adequacy, but alternative interventions are needed to ensure dietary adequacy. Optifood is useful to assess potential contribution of a biofortified crop to nutrient adequacy and to develop additional FBR to address remaining nutrient gaps.
A narrow bridge of floating ice that connected the Wilkins Ice Shelf, Antarctica, to two confining islands eventually collapsed in early April 2009. In the month preceding the collapse, we observed deformation of the ice bridge by means of satellite imagery and from an in situ GPS station. TerraSAR-X images (acquired in stripmap mode) were used to compile a time series. The ice bridge bent most strongly in its narrowest part (westerly), while the northern end (near Charcot Island) shifted in a northeasterly direction. In the south, the ice bridge experienced compressive strain parallel to its long axis. GPS position data were acquired a little south of the narrowest part of the ice bridge from 19 January 2009. Analysis of these data showed both cyclic and monotonic components of motion. Meteorological data and re-analysis of the output of weather-prediction models indicated that easterly winds were responsible for the cyclic motion component. In particular, wind stress on the rough ice melange that occupied the area to the east exerted significant pressure on the ice bridge. The collapse of the ice bridge began with crack formation in the southern section parallel to the long axis of the ice bridge and led to shattering of the southern part. Ultimately, the narrowest part, only 900 m wide, ruptured. The formation of many small icebergs released energy of >125 ×106 J.
Persistent katabatic winds form widely distributed localized areas of near-zero net surface accumulation on the East Antarctic ice sheet (EAIS) plateau. These areas have been called 'glaze' surfaces due to their polished appearance. They are typically 2-200 km2 in area and are found on leeward slopes of ice-sheet undulations and megadunes. Adjacent, leeward high-accumulation regions (isolated dunes) are generally smaller and do not compensate for the local low in surface mass balance (SMB). We use a combination of satellite remote sensing and field-gathered datasets to map the extent of wind glaze in the EAIS above 1500 m elevation. Mapping criteria are derived from distinctive surface and subsurface characteristics of glaze areas resulting from many years of intense annual temperature cycling without significant burial. Our results show that 11.2 ± 1.7%, or 950 ± 143 × 103km2, of the EAIS above 1500 m is wind glaze. Studies of SMB interpolate values across glaze regions, leading to overestimates of net mass input. Using our derived wind-glaze extent, we estimate this excess in three recent models of Antarctic SMB at 46-82 Gt. The lowest-input model appears to best match the mean in regions of extensive wind glaze.
Multi-decade observing campaigns of the globular clusters 47 Tucanae and M15 have led to an outstanding number of discoveries. Here, we report on the latest results of the long-term observations of the pulsars in these two clusters. For most of the pulsars in 47 Tucanae we have measured, among other things, their higher-order spin period derivatives, which have in turn provided stringent constraints on the physical parameters of the cluster, such as its distance and gravitational potential. For M15, we have studied the relativistic spin precession effect in PSR B2127+11C. We have used full-Stokes observations to model the precession effect, and to constrain the system geometry. We find that the visible beam of the pulsar is swiftly moving away from our line of sight and may very soon become undetectable. On the other hand, we expect to see the opposite emission beam sometime between 2041 and 2053.
Since the discovery of periodic variability of Class II methanol masers associated with high-mass star formation, several possible driving mechanisms have been proposed to explain this phenomenon. Here the colliding wind binary (CWB) hypothesis is proposed to describe the periodic variability. It is shown that the recombination of a partially ionized gas describes the flare profiles remarkably well. In addition, the quiescent state flux density is also described remarkably well by the time-dependent change of the electron density. This suggests that the periodicity is caused by the time-dependent change in the radio free-free emission from the background HII regions against which the maser is projected.
In 2015, the Belgian National Reference Centre for Bordetella analyzed 4110 respiratory samples by qPCR and 4877 serum samples by serology. Whereas about 50% of respiratory samples were from infants and children below the age of five, serum samples were distributed among all age categories. A total of 394 (9·6%) cases was diagnosed as positive for Bordetella pertussis by qPCR and 844 (17·3%) cases were diagnosed as acute infection by serology (anti-pertussis toxin (PT) IgG > 125 IU/ml). Another 1042 (21·4%) sera had anti-PT IgG between 55 and 125 IU/ml reflecting a vaccination or pertussis infection during the last 1–2 years. Seventy per cent of the pertussis cases diagnosed by qPRC were in infants and children younger than 14 years old, whereas the highest number of sera with anti-PT levels >125 IU/ml was in the age group of 10–14 years old. Based on the limited data of the last vaccination (reported for only 15% of the samples), recent booster vaccination in the teenager group may have contributed only minimally to these elevated anti-PT levels. The highest number of sera with anti-PT titers between 55 and 125 IU/ml was found in the age category 50–59 years old. It is clear that pertussis continues to be a problem in Belgium and that other vaccination strategies (maternal vaccination, cocoon vaccination) and ultimately better vaccines will be needed to control this highly infectious respiratory disease.
Dilated cardiomyopathy in children causes heart failure and has a poor prognosis. Health-related quality of life in this patient group is unknown. Moreover, results may provide detailed information of parents’ sense of their child’s functioning. We hypothesised that health-related quality of life, as rated by parents, and the paediatric heart failure score, as assessed by physicians, have both predictive value on outcome.
Methods and results
In this prospective study, health-related quality of life was assessed by parent reports: the Infant Toddler Quality of Life questionnaire (0–4 years) or Child Health Questionnaire-Parent Form 50 (4–18 years) at 3–6-month intervals. We included 90 children (median age 3.8 years, interquartile range (IQR) 0.9–12.3) whose parents completed 515 questionnaires. At the same visit, physicians completed the New York University Pediatric Heart Failure Index. Compared with Dutch normative data, quality of life was severely impaired at diagnosis (0–4 years: 7/10 subscales and 4–18 years: 8/11 subscales) and ⩾1 year after diagnosis (3/10 and 6/11 subscales). Older children were more impaired (p<0.05). After a median follow-up of 3 years (IQR 2–4), 15 patients underwent transplantation. Using multivariable time-dependent Cox regression, “physical functioning” subscale and the Heart Failure Index were independently predictive of the risk of death and heart transplantation (hazard ratio 1.24 per 10% decrease of predicted, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.06–1.47 and hazard ratio 1.38 per unit, 95% CI 1.19–1.61, respectively).
Physical impairment rated by parents and heart failure severity assessed by physicians independently predicted the risk of death or heart transplantation in children with dilated cardiomyopathy.
Poor recovery from depressive disorder has been shown to be related to low perceived social support and loneliness, but not to social network size or frequency of social interactions. Some studies suggest that the significance of social relationships for depression course may be greater in younger than in older patients, and may differ between men and women. None of the studies examined to what extent the different aspects of social relationships have unique or overlapping predictive values for depression course. It is the aim of the present study to examine the differential predictive values of social network characteristics, social support and loneliness for the course of depressive disorder, and to test whether these predictive associations are modified by gender or age.
Two naturalistic cohort studies with the same design and overlapping instruments were combined to obtain a study sample of 1474 patients with a major depressive disorder, of whom 1181 (80.1%) could be studied over a 2-year period. Social relational variables were assessed at baseline. Two aspects of depression course were studied: remission at 2-year follow-up and change in depression severity over the follow-up period. By means of logistic regression and random coefficient analysis, the individual and combined predictive values of the different social relational variables for depression course were studied, controlling for potential confounders and checking for effect modification by age (below 60 v. 60 years or older) and gender.
Multiple aspects of the social network, social support and loneliness were related to depression course, independent of potential confounders – including depression severity – but when combined, their predictive values were found to overlap to a large extent. Only the social network characteristic of living in a larger household, the social support characteristic of few negative experiences with the support from a partner or close friend, and limited feelings of loneliness proved to have unique predictive value for a favourable course of depression. Little evidence was found for effect modification by gender or age.
If depressed persons experience difficulties in their social relationships, this may impede their recovery. Special attention for interpersonal problems, social isolation and feelings of loneliness seems warranted in depression treatment and relapse prevention. It will be of great interest to test whether social relational interventions can contribute to better recovery and relapse prevention of depressive disorder.
Preliminary studies report no negative and a possible positive impact of deep brain stimulation (DBS) on cognition of patients with treatment-resistant depression (TRD). However, these studies neither controlled for practice effects nor compared active with sham stimulation.
To address these limitations, we compared 25 TRD patients, who underwent DBS of the ventral anterior limb of the internal capsule (vALIC), with 21 healthy controls (HCs) matched on gender, age and education level. Both groups did subtests of the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery assessing verbal and visuospatial memory, attention, cognitive flexibility, psychomotor functioning, planning and object naming. TRD patients were tested 3 weeks prior to DBS surgery (baseline), 3 weeks following surgery (T1) and following 52 weeks of DBS optimization (T2). HCs were tested at baseline, 6 weeks following baseline (T1) and 20–24 weeks following baseline (T2). Subsequently, TRD patients entered a randomized, double-blind crossover phase, in which they were tested in an active and a sham stimulation phase.
TRD patients did not improve on a test of immediate verbal recognition from baseline to T1, whereas HCs did (group x time: p = 0.001). Both TRD patients and HCs improved over sessions on tests measuring delayed verbal recall, visuospatial memory, planning and object naming (all p < 0.01). Active and sham stimulation did not have an impact on any of the tests differentially.
vALIC DBS neither has a lasting positive nor negative impact on cognition in TRD patients. DBS surgery might have a temporary negative effect on verbal memory.
A recent countrywide MRSA spa-type 1081 outbreak in The Netherlands predominantly affected nursing homes, generating questions on how infection spreads within and between nursing homes despite a low national prevalence. Since the transfer of residents between nursing homes is uncommon in The Netherlands, we hypothesized that staff exchange plays an important role in transmission. This exploratory study investigated the extent of former (last 2 years) and current staff exchange within and between nursing homes in The Netherlands. We relied on a questionnaire that was targeted towards nursing-home staff members who had contact with residents. We found that 17·9% and 12·4% of the nursing-home staff formerly (last 2 years) or currently worked in other healthcare institutes besides their job in the nursing home through which they were selected to participate in this study. Moreover, 39·7% of study participants worked on more than one ward. Our study shows that, in The Netherlands, nursing-home staff form a substantial number of links between wards within nursing homes and nursing homes are linked to a large network of healthcare institutes through their staff members potentially providing a pathway for MRSA transmission between nursing homes and throughout the country.
Supersoft X-ray sources (hereafter SSS) are a class of luminous (bolometric luminosity ~ 1037 − 1038 erg s−1) objects with a characteristic radiation temperature of 30 to 60 eV (Hasinger 1994; Kahabka & Trümper 1996). The most popular model for SSS is that they are massive white dwarfs steadily burning nuclear fuel accreted from a more massive binary companion at a rate near or above the Eddington limit (van den Heuvel et al. 1992).