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To determine the reliability of teleneuropsychological (TNP) compared to in-person assessments (IPA) in people with HIV (PWH) and without HIV (HIV−).
Participants included 80 PWH (Mage = 58.7, SDage = 11.0) and 23 HIV− (Mage = 61.9, SDage = 16.7). Participants completed two comprehensive neuropsychological IPA before one TNP during the COVID-19 pandemic (March–December 2020). The neuropsychological tests included: Hopkins Verbal Learning Test-Revised (HVLT-R Total and Delayed Recall), Controlled Oral Word Association Test (COWAT; FAS-English or PMR-Spanish), Animal Fluency, Action (Verb) Fluency, Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale 3rd Edition (WAIS-III) Symbol Search and Letter Number Sequencing, Stroop Color and Word Test, Paced Auditory Serial Addition Test (Channel 1), and Boston Naming Test. Total raw scores and sub-scores were used in analyses. In the total sample and by HIV status, test-retest reliability and performance-level differences were evaluated between the two consecutive IPA (i.e., IPA1 and IPA2), and mean in-person scores (IPA-M), and TNP.
There were statistically significant test-retest correlations between IPA1 and IPA2 (r or ρ = .603–.883, ps < .001), and between IPA-M and TNP (r or ρ = .622–.958, ps < .001). In the total sample, significantly lower test-retest scores were found between IPA-M and TNP on the COWAT (PMR), Stroop Color and Word Test, WAIS-III Letter Number Sequencing, and HVLT-R Total Recall (ps < .05). Results were similar in PWH only.
This study demonstrates reliability of TNP in PWH and HIV−. TNP assessments are a promising way to improve access to traditional neuropsychological services and maintain ongoing clinical research studies during the COVID-19 pandemic.
We investigated the impact of culturally relevant social, educational, and language factors on cognitive test performance among Spanish speakers living near the US–Mexico border.
Participants included 254 healthy native Spanish speakers from the Neuropsychological Norms for the US–Mexico Border Region in Spanish (NP-NUMBRS) project (Age: M = 37.3, SD = 10.4; Education: M = 10.7, SD = 4.3; 59% Female). A comprehensive neuropsychological battery was administered in Spanish. Individual test scaled scores and T-scores (based on region-specific norms adjusted for age, education, and sex) were averaged to create Global Mean Scaled and T-scores. Measures of culturally relevant factors included a self-reported indicator of educational quality/access (proportion of education in Spanish-speaking country, quality of school/classroom setting, stopped attending school to work), childhood socioeconomic environment (parental education, proportion of time living in Spanish-speaking country, childhood socioeconomic and health status, access to basic resources, work as a child), and Spanish/English language use and fluency.
Several culturally relevant variables were significantly associated with unadjusted Global Scaled Scores in univariable analyses. When using demographically adjusted T-scores, fewer culturally relevant characteristics were significant. In multivariable analyses, being bilingual (p = .04) and working as a child for one’s own benefit compared to not working as a child (p = .006) were significantly associated with higher Global Mean T-score, accounting for 9% of variance.
Demographically adjusted normative data provide a useful tool for the identification of brain dysfunction, as these account for much of the variance of sociocultural factors on cognitive test performance. Yet, certain culturally relevant variables still contributed to cognitive test performance above and beyond basic demographics, warranting further investigation.
Field studies with flatfan, twinjet, flood and rotary atomizers were conducted in 1987 and 1988. The results indicated that tridiphane at 0.6 kg ai/ha plus atrazine at 1.7 kg ai/ha with 2.0 L/ha of soybean oil adjuvant was more effective in controlling giant foxtail and common lambsquarters when applied by the flatfan, twinjet, and rotary atomizers. Image analysis indicated that weed control by a postemergence herbicide was generally enhanced by better application coverage. Droplet size measurement by phase droplet particle/droplet analyzer demonstrated that the rotary atomizer produced a narrower range of droplet diameters between the Dv.1 and Dv.9 volumes than any of the other atomizers.
The HIV epidemic in China has been increasing exponentially, yet there
have been no studies of the neurobehavioral effects of HIV infection in
that country. Most neuroAIDS research has been conducted in Western
countries using Western neuropsychological (NP) methods, and it is unclear
whether these testing methods are appropriate for use in China.
Twenty-eight HIV seropositive (HIV+) and twenty-three HIV seronegative
(HIV−) individuals with comparable gender, age, and education
distributions were recruited in Beijing and the rural Anhui province in
China. Thirty-nine HIV+ and thirty-one HIV− individuals were
selected from a larger U.S. cohort recruited at the HIV Neurobehavioral
Research Center, in San Diego, to be matched to the Chinese sample for
age, disease status, and treatment variables. The NP test battery used
with the U.S. and China cohorts included instruments widely used to study
HIV infection in the United States. It consisted of 14 individual test
measures, each assigned to one of seven ability areas thought to be
especially vulnerable to effects of HIV on the brain (i.e., verbal
fluency, abstraction/executive function, speed of information
processing, working memory, learning, delayed recall, and motor function).
To explore the cross-cultural equivalence and validity of the NP measures,
we compared our Chinese and U.S. samples on the individual tests, as well
as mean scaled scores for the total battery and seven ability domains. On
each NP test measure, the mean of the Chinese HIV+ group was worse than
that of the HIV− group. A series of 2 × 2 analyses of variance
involving HIV+ and HIV− groups from both countries revealed highly
significant HIV effects on the Global and all Domain mean scaled scores.
Country effects appeared on two of the individual ability areas, at least
partly due to education differences between the two countries.
Importantly, the absence of HIV-by-Country interactions suggests that the
NP effects of HIV are similar in the two countries. The NP test battery
that was chosen and adapted for use in this study of HIV in China appears
to have good cross-cultural equivalence, but appropriate Chinese norms
will be needed to identify disease-related impairment in individual
Chinese people. To inform the development of such norms, a much larger
study of demographic effects will be needed, especially considering the
wide range of education in that country. (JINS, 2007,
Severe tropical cyclones are a major cause of episodic mortality for Pacific Island flying foxes (large fruit bats). Many flying foxes starve after forests are stripped of food sources, and hunting by humans may also increase in the post-cyclone period. In December 2001, Cyclone Waka passed directly over the Vava'u Islands in the Kingdom of Tonga, western Polynesia. We visited the islands 6 mo later to survey the flying fox (Pteropus tonganus) population and assess availability of potential food items (fruit and flower) in primary, secondary and plantation forests. Less than 20% of the pre-cyclone bat population (surveyed in 1999–2001) remained 6 mo after the storm. The density of potential food trees in flower or fruit at this time was only 15% of pre-cyclone density, and the main species available were different in the two time periods. The highest density of potential food trees occurred in secondary forest (26 flowering or fruiting trees ha−1) and plantations (23 ha−1); primary forest offered the least food (18 ha−1). Since 65–70% of the land area has been converted to agricultural plantations, this vegetation type had the highest absolute number of food-bearing trees – almost seven times that of primary forest. Flowering coconuts (Cocos nucifera) were the most abundant food source overall and we suggest that this species may be important in sustaining flying foxes following severe storms.
On 31 December 2001, Tropical Cyclone Waka passed directly over the Vava'u island group, Kingdom of Tonga, with sustained and maximum wind speeds of 185 km h−1 and 230 km h−1 respectively. During a prior study of forest secondary succession, 44 forest plots on 13 islands had been surveyed in 1995 and their locations marked. Nineteen of the plots were resurveyed and two additional transects established in May–June 2002, 6 mo following the cyclone. Cyclone-related tree mortality averaged 6%, varied from 0–7% for lowland late-successional species, and tended to be higher for early successional plots (8–16%) and species (4–19%). Severe damage (uprooting, snapped stems) affected 25% of the 2030 stems measured. The proportion of snapped stems was disproportionately high in the 10–15-cm stem diameter class. Uprooting was more prevalent than expected by chance among larger trees (>20 cm diameter). The greatest mortality and severe damage (combined,>35% of stems) occurred in plots that were early successional. Over the 6 y prior to the storm, background recruitment and mortality averaged 1.4% and 3.3% respectively. Mortality was greater than recruitment, while basal area was increasing, in most plots that had not experienced additional anthropogenic disturbance.
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