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Firn temperatures at the Dome Summit South drill site, East Antarctica, are simulated by driving a thermal model of the ice sheet with observed instrumental records over the period 1960-96. The model incorporates firn density and thermal properties to reproduce measured borehole temperatures as shallow as 5 m below the surface, where the seasonal temperature wave is readily apparent. The study shows that ice-sheet temperatures are approximately 0.8°C cooler than mean 4 m air temperatures. It also finds that non-conductive processes such as ventilation and radiation can be simulated at this site by assuming perfect thermal contact between the top ∼1 m of firn and the atmosphere on monthly time-scales.
Cannabis is a widely used drug associated with increased risk for psychosis. The dopamine hypothesis of psychosis postulates that altered salience processing leads to psychosis. We therefore tested the hypothesis that cannabis users exhibit aberrant salience and explored the relationship between aberrant salience and dopamine synthesis capacity.
We tested 17 cannabis users and 17 age- and sex-matched non-user controls using the Salience Attribution Test, a probabilistic reward-learning task. Within users, cannabis-induced psychotic symptoms were measured with the Psychotomimetic States Inventory. Dopamine synthesis capacity, indexed as the influx rate constant Kicer, was measured in 10 users and six controls with 3,4-dihydroxy-6-[18F]fluoro-l-phenylalanine positron emission tomography.
There was no significant difference in aberrant salience between the groups [F1,32 = 1.12, p = 0.30 (implicit); F1,32 = 1.09, p = 0.30 (explicit)]. Within users there was a significant positive relationship between cannabis-induced psychotic symptom severity and explicit aberrant salience scores (r = 0.61, p = 0.04) and there was a significant association between cannabis dependency/abuse status and high implicit aberrant salience scores (F1,15 = 5.8, p = 0.03). Within controls, implicit aberrant salience was inversely correlated with whole striatal dopamine synthesis capacity (r = −0.91, p = 0.01), whereas this relationship was non-significant within users (difference between correlations: Z = −2.05, p = 0.04).
Aberrant salience is positively associated with cannabis-induced psychotic symptom severity, but is not seen in cannabis users overall. This is consistent with the hypothesis that the link between cannabis use and psychosis involves alterations in salience processing. Longitudinal studies are needed to determine whether these cognitive abnormalities are pre-existing or caused by long-term cannabis use.
Clozapine is the most effective medication for treatment refractory schizophrenia. However, descriptions of the mental health and comorbidity profile and care experiences of people on clozapine in routine clinical settings are scarce. Using data from the 2010 Australian Survey of High Impact Psychosis, we aimed to examine the proportion of people using clozapine, and to compare clozapine users with other antipsychotic users on demographic, mental health, adverse drug reaction, polypharmacy and treatment satisfaction variables.
Data describing 1049 people with a diagnosis of schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder, who reported taking any antipsychotic medication in the previous 4 weeks, were drawn from a representative Australian survey of people with psychotic disorders in contact with mental health services in the previous 12 months. We compared participants taking clozapine (n = 257, 22.4%) with those taking other antipsychotic medications, on a range of demographic, clinical and treatment-related indicators.
One quarter of participants were on clozapine. Of participants with a chronic course of illness, only one third were on clozapine. After adjusting for diagnosis and illness chronicity, participants taking clozapine had significantly lower odds of current alcohol, cannabis and other drug use despite similar lifetime odds. Metabolic syndrome and diabetes were more common among people taking clozapine; chronic pain was less common. Psychotropic polypharmacy did not differ between groups.
Consistent with international evidence of clozapine underutilisation, a large number of participants with chronic illness and high symptom burden were not taking clozapine. The lower probabilities of current substance use and chronic pain among clozapine users warrant further study.
The capabilities of the X-ray Timing Explorer (XTE) are described with particular attention paid to current scientific problems it will address from galactic neutron star systems to active galactic nuclei. It features a low-background continuous 2-200 keV response with large apertures (a 0.63-m2 proportional counter array and a 0.16-m2 dual rocking NaI/CsI scintillation array). Rapid response (in hours) to temporal phenomena, e.g. transients, is obtained by virtue of a scanning all-sky monitor and rapid maneuverability. XTE will carry out detailed energy-resolved studies of phenomena close to neutron stars (e.g. QPO’s) because of its sub-millisecond timing (to 10 μs), its high telemetry rates (to 256 kb/s), and the high throughput of its data system (to ≳ 2 × 105 c s−1).
Rates of the metabolic syndrome in people with psychotic illness are high. Emerging evidence suggests that cannabis use may have a positive impact on cardiometabolic risk factors in the general population, but little is known about its impact for people with psychotic illness. Our aim was to investigate whether the rate of the metabolic syndrome in people with psychotic illness was associated with frequency of cannabis use.
The 2010 Australian psychosis survey used a two-phase design to randomly select a nationally representative sample of 1825 adults with psychotic illness for interview and physical assessment. This study is based on 1813 participants who provided data on cannabis use. Multiple logistic regression was used to model the influence of frequency of cannabis use on the metabolic syndrome, adjusting for potential covariates including antipsychotic medication use, smoking, alcohol use and cognitive function.
One-third (33.0%) of participants had used cannabis in the past year. The proportion of non-users, occasional users and frequent users with the metabolic syndrome was 63.0, 51.7 and 43.5%, respectively (p < 0.001). In unadjusted analyses, both occasional use and frequent cannabis use were associated with significantly lower odds of the metabolic syndrome. In the adjusted analyses, the association between the metabolic syndrome and frequent cannabis use remained significant [odds ratio = 0.56, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.39–0.80], but not the association with occasional use (odds ratio = 0.75, 95% CI 0.49–1.13).
While cannabis use may be detrimental for mental health, these data suggest that it may also have a cardiometabolic protective effect. Further investigation is required to understand the mechanism underlying this paradoxical finding.
Many studies have reported that cannabis use increases the risk of a first episode of psychosis (FEP). However, only a few studies have investigated the nature of cannabis-related experiences in FEP patients, and none has examined whether these experiences are similar in FEP and general populations. The aim of this study was to explore differences in self-reported cannabis experiences between FEP and non-psychotic populations.
A total of 252 subjects, who met International Classification of Diseases (ICD)-10 criteria for FEP, and 217 controls who reported cannabis use were selected from the Genetics and Psychosis (GAP) study. The Medical Research Council Social Schedule and the Cannabis Experience Questionnaire were used to collect sociodemographic data and cannabis use information, respectively.
Both ‘bad’ and ‘enjoyable’ experiences were more commonly reported by FEP subjects than controls. Principal components factor analysis identified four components which explained 62.3% of the variance. Linear regression analysis on the whole sample showed that the type of cannabis used and beliefs about the effect of cannabis on health all contributed to determining the intensity and frequency of experiences. Linear regression analysis on FEP subjects showed that the duration of cannabis use and amount of money spent on cannabis were strongly related to the intensity and frequency of enjoyable experiences in this population.
These results suggest a higher sensitivity to cannabis effects among people who have suffered their first psychotic episode; this hypersensitivity results in them reporting both more ‘bad’ and ‘enjoyable’ experiences. The greater enjoyment experienced may provide an explanation of why FEP patients are more likely to use cannabis and to continue to use it despite experiencing an exacerbation of their psychotic symptoms.
Dobrava-Belgrade virus (DOBV) is the most pathogenic hantavirus in Europe with a case-fatality rate of up to 12%. To detect changes in risk for humans, the prevalence of antibodies to DOBV has been monitored in a population of Apodemus flavicollis in the province of Trento (northern Italy) since 2000, and a sudden increase was observed in 2010. In the 13-year period of this study, 2077 animals were live-trapped and mean hantavirus seroprevalence was 2·7% (s.e. = 0·3%), ranging from 0% (in 2000, 2002 and 2003) to 12·5% (in 2012). Climatic (temperature and precipitation) and host (rodent population density, rodent weight and sex, and larval tick burden) variables were analysed using Generalized Linear Models and multi-model inference to select the best model. Climatic changes (mean annual precipitation and maximum temperature) and individual body mass had a positive effect on hantavirus seroprevalence. Other possible drivers affecting the observed pattern need to be studied further.
In this globalized world, the spread of new, exotic and re-emerging diseases has become one of the most important threats to animal production and public health. This systematic review analyses conventional and novel early detection methods applied to surveillance. In all, 125 scientific documents were considered for this study. Exotic (n = 49) and re-emerging (n = 27) diseases constituted the most frequently represented health threats. In addition, the majority of studies were related to zoonoses (n = 66). The approaches found in the review could be divided in surveillance modalities, both active (n = 23) and passive (n = 5); and tools and methodologies that support surveillance activities (n = 57). Combinations of surveillance modalities and tools (n = 40) were also found. Risk-based approaches were very common (n = 60), especially in the papers describing tools and methodologies (n = 50). The main applications, benefits and limitations of each approach were extracted from the papers. This information will be very useful for informing the development of tools to facilitate the design of cost-effective surveillance strategies. Thus, the current literature review provides key information about the advantages, disadvantages, limitations and potential application of methodologies for the early detection of new, exotic and re-emerging diseases.
The links between migrant status and psychosis have attracted considerable attention in recent decades. The aim of the study was to explore the demographic and clinical correlates of migrant v. Australia-born status in individuals with psychotic disorders using a large community-based sample.
Data were drawn from a population-based prevalence survey of adults with psychotic disorders. Known as the Survey of High Impact Psychosis (SHIP), it was conducted in seven Australian catchment areas in 2010. Logistic regression was used for the main analyses, examining associations of migrant status with sociodemographic and clinical variables.
Of the 1825 participants with psychotic disorders, 17.8% (n = 325) were migrants, of whom 55.7% (n = 181) were male. Compared to Australia-born individuals with psychosis, migrants were more likely to be currently married, to have completed a higher level at school, to have left school later, and to be employed with full-time jobs. Migrants with psychosis were either no different from or less impaired or disadvantaged compared to their Australian-born counterparts on a range of clinical and demographic variables.
In a sample of individuals with psychotic disorders, there was no evidence to suggest that migrant status was associated with worse clinical or socio-economic outcomes compared to their native-born counterparts.
The use of inert markers in broiler diets eliminates the need to quantitatively evaluate feed intake and excreta output to determine diet digestibility, and enables nutrient uptake at specific points along the gastrointestinal tract to be examined. Titanium dioxide (TiO2) is commonly used for this purpose and measured using a UV-spectrophotometric assay. Two experiments were conducted to observe whether an inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrophotometer (ICP-OES) assay is able to replace the UV-spectroscopy assay for rapid analysis of TiO2 in broiler feed and ileal digesta samples. In the first experiment, TiO2 was added at 5 g/kg to 19 broiler diets. Ross 308 male broilers (n=452) fed these diets were involved in a series of digestion studies to determine ileal digesta recovery of TiO2. In the second experiment, defined amounts of TiO2 were added to ileal digesta samples from Ross 308 male broilers (n=176) and TiO2 recoveries were determined. The feed and ileal samples from both experiments were analysed by both UV-spectroscopy and ICP-OES, and relatedness of the findings from the two assays was determined. Overall relatedness of the two assays was strong for determination of TiO2 concentration in both the broiler diets and ileal digesta samples (r=0.908 and r=0.884, respectively). Overall recovery of supplemented TiO2 was 97.62% by the UV-spectroscopy assay and 98.77% by the ICP-OES assay. The ICP-OES assay in this study was as accurate as spectrophotometric determination for the quantification of TiO2 content. The ICP-OES method can also be used to analyse several elements within one assay, with a single preparation step, and thus the measurement of TiO2 may be incorporated into the analysis of other minerals. Time and resources dedicated to determining diet digestibility in broilers could be minimised by using the ICP-OES assay to replace the UV-spectroscopy assay when measuring TiO2 concentration.
There are insufficient data from nationwide surveys on the prevalence of specific psychotic disorders and associated co-morbidities.
The 2010 Australian national psychosis survey used a two-phase design to draw a representative sample of adults aged 18–64 years with psychotic disorders in contact with public treatment services from an estimated resident population of 1 464 923 adults. This paper is based on data from 1642 participants with an International Classification of Diseases (ICD)-10 psychotic disorder. Its aim is to present estimates of treated prevalence and lifetime morbid risk of psychosis, and to describe the cognitive, physical health and substance use profiles of participants.
The 1-month treated prevalence of psychotic disorders was 3.10 cases per 1000 population aged 18–64 years, not accounting for people solely accessing primary care services; lifetime morbid risk was 3.45 per 1000. Mean premorbid intelligence quotient was approximately 0.5 s.d.s below the population mean; current cognitive ability (measured with a digit symbol coding task) was 1.6 s.d.s below the population mean. For both cognitive tests, higher scores were significantly associated with better independent functioning. The prevalence of the metabolic syndrome was high, affecting 60.8% of participants, and pervasive across diagnostic groups. Of the participants, two-thirds (65.9%) were current smokers, 47.4% were obese and 32.4% were sedentary. Of the participants, half (49.8%) had a lifetime history of alcohol abuse/dependence and 50.8% lifetime cannabis abuse/dependence.
Our findings highlight the need for comprehensive, integrative models of recovery to maximize the potential for good health and quality of life for people with psychotic illness.
The Millimetre Astronomy Legacy Team 90 GHz (MALT90) survey aims to characterise the physical and chemical evolution of high-mass star-forming clumps. Exploiting the unique broad frequency range and on-the-fly mapping capabilities of the Australia Telescope National Facility Mopra 22 m single-dish telescope1, MALT90 has obtained 3′ × 3′ maps towards ~2 000 dense molecular clumps identified in the ATLASGAL 870 μm Galactic plane survey. The clumps were selected to host the early stages of high-mass star formation and to span the complete range in their evolutionary states (from prestellar, to protostellar, and on to
regions and photodissociation regions). Because MALT90 mapped 16 lines simultaneously with excellent spatial (38 arcsec) and spectral (0.11 km s−1) resolution, the data reveal a wealth of information about the clumps’ morphologies, chemistry, and kinematics. In this paper we outline the survey strategy, observing mode, data reduction procedure, and highlight some early science results. All MALT90 raw and processed data products are available to the community. With its unprecedented large sample of clumps, MALT90 is the largest survey of its type ever conducted and an excellent resource for identifying interesting candidates for high-resolution studies with ALMA.
Large epidemiological studies are needed to better understand the prevalence and profile of offending by people with mental illness. This study used a whole-of-population design to examine the prevalence, type and pattern of offending across all psychiatric diagnoses, including schizophrenia, compared to the general population.
We used whole-of-population longitudinal record-linked data for a cohort of all Western Australians born 1955–1969 to determine arrest history over the period 1985–1996 and to ascertain recorded history of psychiatric illness. Of the cohort, 116 656 had been arrested and 40 478 were on the psychiatric case register.
The period prevalence of arrest for people with any psychiatric illness was 32.1%. The highest arrest prevalence, by diagnostic category, was for substance use disorders (59.4%); the prevalence for schizophrenia was 38.7%. Co-morbid substance use disorders significantly increased risk of arrest in people with schizophrenia. The prevalence of mental illness among offenders was 11.1%: 6.5% of offenders had substance use disorders and 1.7% had schizophrenia. For the majority of offenders with a psychiatric illness, first arrest preceded first contact with mental health services; for schizophrenia only, this proportion was increasing over time. The mean percentage annual change in the number of arrests during 1985–1996 rose significantly for offenders with a psychiatric illness other than schizophrenia and dropped significantly for those with no mental illness. Compared to non-psychiatric offenders, offenders with schizophrenia were more likely to offend alone, to offend in open places and to target strangers.
Our findings open the way to an informed approach to the management of offenders with mental illness.
In the present study, shock tube experiments are used to study the very late-time development of the Richtmyer–Meshkov instability from a diffuse, nearly sinusoidal, initial perturbation into a fully turbulent flow. The interface is generated by two opposing gas flows and a perturbation is formed on the interface by transversely oscillating the shock tube to create a standing wave. The puncturing of a diaphragm generates a Mach
shock wave that then impacts a density gradient composed of air and SF6, causing the Richtmyer–Meshkov instability to develop in the 2.0 m long test section. The instability is visualized with planar Mie scattering in which smoke particles in the air are illuminated by a Nd:YLF laser sheet, and images are recorded using four high-speed video cameras operating at 6 kHz that allow the recording of the time history of the instability. In addition, particle image velocimetry (PIV) is implemented using a double-pulsed Nd:YAG laser with images recorded using a single CCD camera. Initial modal content, amplitude, and growth rates are reported from the Mie scattering experiments while vorticity and circulation measurements are made using PIV. Amplitude measurements show good early-time agreement but relatively poor late-time agreement with existing nonlinear models. The model of Goncharov (Phys. Rev. Lett., vol. 88, 2002, 134502) agrees with growth rate measurements at intermediate times but fails at late experimental times. Measured background acceleration present in the experiment suggests that the late-time growth rate may be influenced by Rayleigh–Taylor instability induced by the interfacial acceleration. Numerical simulations conducted using the LLNL codes Ares and Miranda show that this acceleration may be caused by the growth of boundary layers, and must be accounted for to produce good agreement with models and simulations. Adding acceleration to the Richtmyer–Meshkov buoyancy–drag model produces improved agreement. It is found that the growth rate and amplitude trends are also modelled well by the Likhachev–Jacobs vortex model (Likhachev & Jacobs, Phys. Fluids, vol. 17, 2005, 031704). Circulation measurements also show good agreement with the circulation value extracted by fitting the vortex model to the experimental data.
Research mostly conducted in the UK and northern Europe has established that there are high rates of first-episode psychosis (FEP) in large cities and immigrant populations; moreover, psychosis has been found to be associated with cannabis use and early trauma. The present study aimed to evaluate the incidence rate of FEP and the distribution of several risk factors (e.g. age, ethnicity, substance abuse) in Bologna, Italy.
The Bologna FEP (BoFEP) study is an 8-year prospective study. All FEP patients, 18–64 years old, consecutively referred to the West Bologna Community Mental Health Centre (CMHC) from 2002 to 2009 were evaluated. Sociodemographic information, migration history and clinical data were collected through an ad-hoc schedule. Psychiatric diagnoses were recorded using the Schedule for Clinical Assessment of Neuropsychiatry (SCAN).
The overall incidence rate (IR) in the BoFEP study was 16.4 per 100 000 person-years [95% confidence interval (CI) 13.9–18.9]. The incidence was higher in young people, men and migrants (MI).
The IR of FEP found by the Bologna study is lower than that found by other European studies. However, as in other studies, the incidence was higher in certain groups. This heterogeneity has implications for policy and mental health service development, and for understanding the aetiology of psychosis.
To date, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has made little impact on the diagnosis and monitoring of psychoses in individual patients. In this study, we used a support vector machine (SVM) whole-brain classification approach to predict future illness course at the individual level from MRI data obtained at the first psychotic episode.
One hundred patients at their first psychotic episode and 91 healthy controls had an MRI scan. Patients were re-evaluated 6.2 years (s.d.=2.3) later, and were classified as having a continuous, episodic or intermediate illness course. Twenty-eight subjects with a continuous course were compared with 28 patients with an episodic course and with 28 healthy controls. We trained each SVM classifier independently for the following contrasts: continuous versus episodic, continuous versus healthy controls, and episodic versus healthy controls.
At baseline, patients with a continuous course were already distinguishable, with significance above chance level, from both patients with an episodic course (p=0.004, sensitivity=71, specificity=68) and healthy individuals (p=0.01, sensitivity=71, specificity=61). Patients with an episodic course could not be distinguished from healthy individuals. When patients with an intermediate outcome were classified according to the discriminating pattern episodic versus continuous, 74% of those who did not develop other episodes were classified as episodic, and 65% of those who did develop further episodes were classified as continuous (p=0.035).
We provide preliminary evidence of MRI application in the individualized prediction of future illness course, using a simple and automated SVM pipeline. When replicated and validated in larger groups, this could enable targeted clinical decisions based on imaging data.
The structure, morphology, and transport properties of thin films of InN grown on several cubic semiconductors has been studied as a function of substrate temperature. Films were deposited using rf-magnetron sputtering onto the (111) face of GaAs, Ge, Si and ZrO2. In general, the film structure is such that (00.1)InN parallels the (111) plane of the cubic substrate above some deposition temperature. The in-plane structural coherence duplicates the magnitude of the calculated lattice mismatch between InN and the substrate. Electrical transport properties for growth onto (111) ZrO2 were characterized by n-type carrier concentration and mobilities ranging up to 44 cm2 /Vsec. A morphology-induced decrease in electrical mobility is observed for deposition temperatures above 350°C, as shown by SEM.