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South Africa (SA) is a developing country with an ageing population. Adequate nutrition and physical activity (PA) protect against the loss of muscle mass and physical function, both of which are important components of sarcopenia. This study aimed to measure the prevalence of sarcopenia in older black SA women and investigate its associations with PA and protein intake.
Materials and Methods
Older black SA women (age, 68 (range; 60–85 years) n = 122) completed sociodemographic questionnaires, 24 h urine collection (estimate protein intake), venous blood (hs-C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) and ferritin), functional tests (grip strength, 3 m timed-up-and-go (TUG), 10 m walk test) and PA monitoring (activPAL). Dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry whole-body scans assessed fat and fat-free soft tissue mass (FFSTM).
According to the European Working group on Sarcopenia in Older People (EWGSOP)2, 2.5% (n = 3) had confirmed sarcopenia of a low severity based on normal physical function. Of the total cohort, 9% (n = 11) had low grip strength, 22.1% (n = 27) had a low appendicular skeletal muscle index (ASMI), and no women had low TUG (s) or gait speed (m/s). Higher ASMI was associated with lower hs-CRP (p = 0.05; Rho = -0.209) and higher ferritin (Rho = 0.252; p = 0.019), grip strength (kg, Rho = 0.223; p = 0.015), and gait speed (m/s, Rho = 0.180; p = 0.050). Protein intake suggested intake of 41.8g/day/ or 0.51 g/kg of body mass/day. Higher total protein intake (g/24h), was associated with higher FFSTM (kg) and ASMI (p < 0.001). PA outcomes were not correlated with FFSTM or ASMI (p > 0.05), however, there was a strong positive correlation of TUG (s) and gait speed (m/s) with time spent: 1) stepping per day (min) and; 2) at a high cadence (> 100 steps/min) (all p < 0.01). Daily step count was 7137 ± 3233 (mean ± Standard deviation), with 97.9 ± 38.7 min of total time spent stepping and 12.6 ± 16.8 min spent stepping at a high cadence (> 100 steps/min). Of note, 13.9% (n = 17) of women were completing > 10,000 steps/day.
Based on the EWGSOP2 criteria, there is a low prevalence of sarcopenia in older black SA women, explained by the maintenance of strength and physical function that directly related to PA, especially that performed at higher intensities. In contrast, low muscle mass was relatively prevalent (22.1%) and was associated with low dietary protein and not PA. Notably, it may be important to review the cut-points of EWGSOP2 criteria to be specific to the older SA women from disadvantaged communities.
Osteoporosis was not a public health concern in black South African (SA) women, until recently when it was reported that the prevalence of vertebral fractures was 9.1% in black compared to 5.0% in white SA women. Accordingly, this study aimed to measure bone mineral density (BMD) of older black SA women and to investigate its association with risk factors for osteoporosis, including strength, muscle and fat mass, dietary intake and objectively measured physical activity (PA).
Methods and materials
Older black SA women (age, 68 (range; 60–85 years) n = 122) completed sociodemographic and quantitative food frequency questionnaires (QFFQ), fasting venous blood samples (25-hydroxycholecalciferol: Vitamin D-25), 24 h urine collection (estimate protein intake), grip strength and PA monitoring (activPAL). Dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) scans of the hip (femoral neck and total) and lumbar spine determined BMD and whole-body scans for fat and fat-free soft tissue mass (FFSTM). WHO classifications were used to determine osteopenia (t-score -2.5 to -1), and osteoporosis (t-score < -2.5).
At the lumbar spine 34.4% of the women (n = 42) had osteopenia and 19.7% (n = 24) had osteoporosis. Osteopenia at the left femoral neck was 32% (n = 40) and osteoporosis was 13.1% (n = 16) of participants. The total left hip BMD indicated osteopenia in 27.9% (n = 34) and osteoporosis in 13.1% (n = 16) of participants. Multinomial regression revealed no differences in age (y) or frequency of falls in the past year between all groups (p = 0.727). Compared to those with normal BMD, participants with osteoporosis at the hip neck and lumbar spine were shorter, weighed less and had a lower body mass index (BMI) (all p < 0.05). When adjusted for height, the osteoporotic group (hip neck and lumbar spine) had lower trunk fat (% whole body), FFSTM (kg) and grip strength (kg), compared to those with normal BMD (p < 0.05). Only protein intake (g; 24 h urine analyses) was lower in women with osteoporosis (all sites) compared to those with normal BMD. Fat, carbohydrate and micronutrient intakes (relative to total daily energy intake), and vitamin D concentrations were not associated with BMD (all sites). Number of daily step count and stepping time (min) were inversely associated with BMI (p < 0.05), but not with BMD (all sites; p > 0.05).
A high prevalence of osteopenia and osteoporosis was evident at the lumbar spine and hip in older black SA women. This study highlights the importance of strength, body composition, and protein intake in maintaining BMD and preventing the development of osteoporosis in older women.
We present ALMA detection of the [O iii] 88 μm line and 850 μm dust continuum emission in a Y-dropout Lyman break galaxy, MACS0416_Y1. The [O iii] detection confirms the object with a spectroscopic redshift to be z = 8.3118±0.0003. The 850 μm continuum intensity (0.14 mJy) implies a large dust mass on the order of 4×106M⊙. The ultraviolet-to-far infrared spectral energy distribution modeling, where the [O iii] emissivity model is incorporated, suggests the presence of a young (τage ≍ 4 Myr), star-forming (SFR ≍ 60M⊙yr−1), and moderately metal-polluted (Z ≍ 0.2Z⊙) stellar component with a stellar mass of 3 × 108M⊙. An analytic dust mass evolution model with a single episode of star formation does not reproduce the metallicity and dust mass in ≍ 4 Myr, suggesting an underlying evolved stellar component as the origin of the dust mass.
The COllaborative project of Development of Anthropometrical measures in Twins (CODATwins) project is a large international collaborative effort to analyze individual-level phenotype data from twins in multiple cohorts from different environments. The main objective is to study factors that modify genetic and environmental variation of height, body mass index (BMI, kg/m2) and size at birth, and additionally to address other research questions such as long-term consequences of birth size. The project started in 2013 and is open to all twin projects in the world having height and weight measures on twins with information on zygosity. Thus far, 54 twin projects from 24 countries have provided individual-level data. The CODATwins database includes 489,981 twin individuals (228,635 complete twin pairs). Since many twin cohorts have collected longitudinal data, there is a total of 1,049,785 height and weight observations. For many cohorts, we also have information on birth weight and length, own smoking behavior and own or parental education. We found that the heritability estimates of height and BMI systematically changed from infancy to old age. Remarkably, only minor differences in the heritability estimates were found across cultural–geographic regions, measurement time and birth cohort for height and BMI. In addition to genetic epidemiological studies, we looked at associations of height and BMI with education, birth weight and smoking status. Within-family analyses examined differences within same-sex and opposite-sex dizygotic twins in birth size and later development. The CODATwins project demonstrates the feasibility and value of international collaboration to address gene-by-exposure interactions that require large sample sizes and address the effects of different exposures across time, geographical regions and socioeconomic status.
We determined the incidence, type, and severity of complications after cardiac catheterisation in children with heart disease in Norway, and we present the results in terms of the International Paediatric and Congenital Cardiac Code (IPCCC) nomenclature for complications. All paediatric cardiac catheterisations in Norway are performed in one clinical centre. All procedures performed during a 5-year period beginning in 2010 were prospectively registered, and medical records for cases with complications were reviewed to confirm the event and to re-classify the type, severity, and attributability of the complication according to the IPCCC nomenclature. Univariate and multivariate analyses were performed to identify possible risk predictors. A total of 1318 catheterisations performed on 941 patients were included in the present study, of which 68% were interventional. The complication and major complication rates were 5.5 and 1.4%, respectively. Trauma to the vessels or the myocardium, haemodynamic adverse events, and arrhythmias were the most common types of complications. In the multivariate model, weight <4 kg (odds ratios, 3.0; 95% confidence intervals: 1.6–5.8) and risk category 5 (odds ratios, 5.1; 95% confidence intervals: 2.1–12.3) were significant risk predictors for any complication. In spite of a high rate of interventions, the complication rates in this study were similar to older studies, but diverging methods and terminology limit the comparability. We strongly suggest general use of the proposed IPCCC classification system for registration and reports of complications for paediatric cardiac catheterisations.
High-resolution (or “cross-correlation”) electron backscatter diffraction analysis (HR-EBSD) utilizes cross-correlation techniques to determine relative orientation and distortion of an experimental electron backscatter diffraction pattern with respect to a reference pattern. The integrity of absolute strain and tetragonality measurements of a standard Si/SiGe material have previously been analyzed using reference patterns produced by kinematical simulation. Although the results were promising, the noise levels were significantly higher for kinematically produced patterns, compared with real patterns taken from the Si region of the sample. This paper applies HR-EBSD techniques to analyze lattice distortion in an Si/SiGe sample, using recently developed dynamically simulated patterns. The results are compared with those from experimental and kinematically simulated patterns. Dynamical patterns provide significantly more precision than kinematical patterns. Dynamical patterns also provide better estimates of tetragonality at low levels of distortion relative to the reference pattern; kinematical patterns can perform better at large values of relative tetragonality due to the ability to rapidly generate patterns relating to a distorted lattice. A library of dynamically generated patterns with different lattice parameters might be used to achieve a similar advantage. The convergence of the cross-correlation approach is also assessed for the different reference pattern types.
A trend toward greater body size in dizygotic (DZ) than in monozygotic (MZ) twins has been suggested by some but not all studies, and this difference may also vary by age. We analyzed zygosity differences in mean values and variances of height and body mass index (BMI) among male and female twins from infancy to old age. Data were derived from an international database of 54 twin cohorts participating in the COllaborative project of Development of Anthropometrical measures in Twins (CODATwins), and included 842,951 height and BMI measurements from twins aged 1 to 102 years. The results showed that DZ twins were consistently taller than MZ twins, with differences of up to 2.0 cm in childhood and adolescence and up to 0.9 cm in adulthood. Similarly, a greater mean BMI of up to 0.3 kg/m2 in childhood and adolescence and up to 0.2 kg/m2 in adulthood was observed in DZ twins, although the pattern was less consistent. DZ twins presented up to 1.7% greater height and 1.9% greater BMI than MZ twins; these percentage differences were largest in middle and late childhood and decreased with age in both sexes. The variance of height was similar in MZ and DZ twins at most ages. In contrast, the variance of BMI was significantly higher in DZ than in MZ twins, particularly in childhood. In conclusion, DZ twins were generally taller and had greater BMI than MZ twins, but the differences decreased with age in both sexes.
Internet interventions are assumed to be cost-effective. However, it is unclear how strong this evidence is, and what the quality of this evidence is.
A comprehensive literature search (1990–2014) in Medline, EMBASE, the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, NHS Economic Evaluations Database, NHS Health Technology Assessment Database, Office of Health Economics Evaluations Database, Compendex and Inspec was conducted. We included economic evaluations alongside randomized controlled trials of Internet interventions for a range of mental health symptoms compared to a control group, consisting of a psychological or pharmaceutical intervention, treatment-as-usual (TAU), wait-list or an attention control group.
Of the 6587 abstracts identified, 16 papers met the inclusion criteria. Nine studies featured a societal perspective. Results demonstrated that guided Internet interventions for depression, anxiety, smoking cessation and alcohol consumption had favourable probabilities of being more cost-effective when compared to wait-list, TAU, group cognitive behaviour therapy (CBGT), attention control, telephone counselling or unguided Internet CBT. Unguided Internet interventions for suicide prevention, depression and smoking cessation demonstrated cost-effectiveness compared to TAU or attention control. In general, results from cost-utility analyses using more generic health outcomes (quality of life) were less favourable for unguided Internet interventions. Most studies adhered reasonably to economic guidelines.
Results of guided Internet interventions being cost-effective are promising with most studies adhering to publication standards, but more economic evaluations are needed in order to determine cost-effectiveness of Internet interventions compared to the most cost-effective treatment currently available.
For over 100 years, the genetics of human anthropometric traits has attracted scientific interest. In particular, height and body mass index (BMI, calculated as kg/m2) have been under intensive genetic research. However, it is still largely unknown whether and how heritability estimates vary between human populations. Opportunities to address this question have increased recently because of the establishment of many new twin cohorts and the increasing accumulation of data in established twin cohorts. We started a new research project to analyze systematically (1) the variation of heritability estimates of height, BMI and their trajectories over the life course between birth cohorts, ethnicities and countries, and (2) to study the effects of birth-related factors, education and smoking on these anthropometric traits and whether these effects vary between twin cohorts. We identified 67 twin projects, including both monozygotic (MZ) and dizygotic (DZ) twins, using various sources. We asked for individual level data on height and weight including repeated measurements, birth related traits, background variables, education and smoking. By the end of 2014, 48 projects participated. Together, we have 893,458 height and weight measures (52% females) from 434,723 twin individuals, including 201,192 complete twin pairs (40% monozygotic, 40% same-sex dizygotic and 20% opposite-sex dizygotic) representing 22 countries. This project demonstrates that large-scale international twin studies are feasible and can promote the use of existing data for novel research purposes.
It is well known that web-based interventions can be effective treatments for depression. However, dropout rates in web-based interventions are typically high, especially in self-guided web-based interventions. Rigorous empirical evidence regarding factors influencing dropout in self-guided web-based interventions is lacking due to small study sample sizes. In this paper we examined predictors of dropout in an individual patient data meta-analysis to gain a better understanding of who may benefit from these interventions.
A comprehensive literature search for all randomized controlled trials (RCTs) of psychotherapy for adults with depression from 2006 to January 2013 was conducted. Next, we approached authors to collect the primary data of the selected studies. Predictors of dropout, such as socio-demographic, clinical, and intervention characteristics were examined.
Data from 2705 participants across ten RCTs of self-guided web-based interventions for depression were analysed. The multivariate analysis indicated that male gender [relative risk (RR) 1.08], lower educational level (primary education, RR 1.26) and co-morbid anxiety symptoms (RR 1.18) significantly increased the risk of dropping out, while for every additional 4 years of age, the risk of dropping out significantly decreased (RR 0.94).
Dropout can be predicted by several variables and is not randomly distributed. This knowledge may inform tailoring of online self-help interventions to prevent dropout in identified groups at risk.
We have developed a sheep model to facilitate studies of the fetal programming effects of mismatched perinatal and postnatal nutrition. During the last trimester of gestation, twenty-one twin-bearing ewes were fed a normal diet fulfilling norms for energy and protein (NORM) or 50 % of a normal diet (LOW). From day 3 postpartum to 6 months (around puberty) of age, one twin lamb was fed a conventional (CONV) diet and the other a high-carbohydrate–high-fat (HCHF) diet, resulting in four groups of offspring: NORM-CONV; NORM-HCHF; LOW-CONV; LOW-HCHF. At 6 months of age, half of the lambs (all males and three females) were slaughtered for further examination and the other half (females only) were transferred to a moderate sheep diet until slaughtered at 24 months of age (adulthood). Maternal undernutrition during late gestation reduced the birth weight of LOW offspring (P< 0·05), and its long-term effects were increased adrenal size in male lambs and adult females (P< 0·05), increased neonatal appetite for fat-(P= 0·004) rather than carbohydrate-rich feeds (P< 0·001) and reduced deposition of subcutaneous fat in both sexes (P< 0·05). Furthermore, LOW-HCHF female lambs had markedly higher visceral:subcutaneous fat ratios compared with the other groups (P< 0·001). Postnatal overfeeding (HCHF) resulted in obesity (>30 % fat in soft tissue) and widespread ectopic lipid deposition. In conclusion, our sheep model revealed strong pre- and postnatal impacts on growth, food preferences and fat deposition patterns. The present findings support a role for subcutaneous adipose tissue in the development of visceral adiposity, which in humans is known to precede the development of the metabolic syndrome in human adults.
Genome-wide association analysis on monozygotic twin-pairs offers a route to discovery of gene–environment interactions through testing for variability loci associated with sensitivity to individual environment/lifestyle. We present a genome-wide scan of loci associated with intra-pair differences in serum lipid and apolipoprotein levels. We report data for 1,720 monozygotic female twin-pairs from GenomEUtwin project with 2.5 million SNPs, imputed or genotyped, and measured serum lipid fractions for both twins. We found one locus associated with intra-pair differences in high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, rs2483058 in an intron of SRGAP2, where twins carrying the C allele are more sensitive to environmental factors (P = 3.98 × 10−8). We followed up the association in further genotyped monozygotic twins (N = 1,261), which showed a moderate association for the variant (P = 0.200, same direction of an effect). In addition, we report a new association on the level of apolipoprotein A-II (P = 4.03 × 10−8).
NASA's NuSTAR observatory is the first focusing hard X-ray telescope. Launched in June 2012, NuSTAR is sensitive in the 3–79 keV range with unprecedented ~17″ FWHM angular resolution above 12 keV, a result of its multilayer-coated optics and 10-m focal length. With its large effective area (900 cm2 at 10 keV), NuSTAR has point-source sensitivity ~100 times better than previous hard X-ray telescopes. Here we describe NuSTAR and its planned work on rotation-powered pulsars and magnetars during its nominal 2-yr baseline mission that has just commenced.
Human cytomegalovirus (CMV) is a common herpesvirus establishing lifelong persisting infection, which has been implicated in immunosenescence and mortality in the elderly. Little is known about how and when susceptibility to CMV infection is determined. We measured CMV seroprevalence in two genetically informative cohorts. From the Leiden Longevity Study (LLS) we selected long-lived sib-pairs (n=844) and their middle-aged offspring and the offspring's partners (n=1452). From the Longitudinal Study of Aging Danish Twins (LSADT) 604 (302 pairs) same-sex monozygotic (MZ) and dizygotic (DZ) twins aged 73–94 years were included (n=302 pairs). Offspring of the long-lived LLS participants had significantly lower seroprevalence of CMV compared to their partners (offspring: 42% vs. partners: 51%, P=0·003). Of 372 offspring living with a CMV-positive partner, only 58% were infected. The corresponding number for partners was 71% (P<0·001). In the LSADT, MZ and DZ twins had high and similar CMV-positive concordance rates (MZ: 90% vs. DZ: 88%, P=0·51) suggesting that shared family environment accounts for the similarity within twin pairs. Our findings suggest that susceptibility to CMV infection – even under continuous within-partnership exposure – appears to be more strongly influenced by early-life environment than by genetic factors and adult environment.
Congenital heart defect patients may experience neurodevelopmental impairment. We investigated their educational attainments from basic schooling to higher education.
Patients and methods
Using administrative databases, we identified all Danish patients with a cardiac defect diagnosis born from 1 January, 1977 to 1 January, 1991 and alive at age 13 years. As a comparison cohort, we randomly sampled 10 persons per patient. We obtained information on educational attainment from Denmark's Database for Labour Market Research. The study population was followed until achievement of educational levels, death, emigration, or 1 January, 2006. We estimated the hazard ratio of attaining given educational levels, conditional on completing preceding levels, using discrete-time Cox regression and adjusting for socio-economic factors. Analyses were repeated for a sub-cohort of patients and controls born at term and without extracardiac defects or chromosomal anomalies.
We identified 2986 patients. Their probability of completing compulsory basic schooling was approximately 10% lower than that of control individuals (adjusted hazard ratio = 0.79, ranged from 0.75 to 0.82 0.79; 95% confidence interval: 0.75–0.82). Their subsequent probability of completing secondary school was lower than that of the controls, both for all patients (adjusted hazard ratio = 0.74; 95% confidence interval: 0.69–0.80) and for the sub-cohort (adjusted hazard ratio = 0.80; 95% confidence interval: 0.73–0.86). The probability of attaining a higher degree, conditional on completion of youth education, was affected both for all patients (adjusted hazard ratio = 0.88; 95% confidence interval: 0.76–1.01) and for the sub-cohort (adjusted hazard ratio = 0.92; 95% confidence interval: 0.79–1.07).
The probability of educational attainment was reduced among long-term congenital heart defect survivors.
We present a theoretical model for the wave-induced drift and horizontal deformation of an oil slick. The waves and the mean flow are coupled through the influence of the mean flow on the concentration of slick material, which in turn determines the damping rate of the waves and hence the transfer of momentum from the waves to the mean flow. We also briefly discuss a simplified version of the model that can be used when remote sensing data are available. With this simpler model the wave-induced forcing of the mean flow is obtained directly from observations of the wave field, hence knowledge of any specific slick properties is not required.
To determine the long-term significance of right bundle branch block on left ventricular systolic and diastolic function in children subsequent to surgical closure of ventricular septal defect.
We studied 26 children who underwent surgical closure of a ventricular septal defect 11 ± 2 years postoperatively by use of conventional and tissue Doppler echocardiography, comparing the findings to those obtained from a control group. Of those having surgical correction 14 had postoperative right bundle branch block.
Irrespective of the presence of right bundle branch block, the peak systolic velocity of the mitral ring was lower in those undergoing surgical correction, with values of 5.2 ± 1.4 cm/s in those with right bundle branch block, 5.4 ± 1.2 cm/s in those without right bundle branch block after surgical correction, and 6.6 ± 1.0 cm/s in the control subjects (p < 0.01). In terms of diastolic function, the early septal velocity of transmitral inflow divided by the early diastolic mitral annular velocity was significantly higher in children with right bundle branch block, at 12 ± 3.0 cm/s compared to 8.4 ± 1.5 cm/s in the control subjects (p < 0.01), but not significantly higher in the children without right bundle branch block after correction compared to the control group. The fractional shortening percentage was similar in both patients and control subjects. The changes noted in left ventricular function were not significantly related to age at surgery, the period of follow-up, or the surgical method.
Systolic long axis function is significantly reduced in children after surgical closure of ventricular septal defects, irrespective of the presence of right bundle branch block. Diastolic dysfunction, in contrast, was observed primarily in children with post-operative right bundle branch block.
This study estimated the effect of discontinued use of antimicrobial growth promoters (duAGPs) on the risk of antibiotic treatment for diarrhoea, arthritis, pneumonia, unthriving and miscellaneous disorders in Danish pig farms. The estimation was done in a case-crossover study comparing: (1) the proportion of days per farm where treatment was performed (PDT) and (2) the proportion of pigs treated per day per farm at days where treatment was performed (PPT) before and after duAGPs at 68 farrow-to-finish farms. The farms were selected using a two-stage (veterinarian/farm) convenience sampling. On average, during the first year after duAGPs there was a significant increase in the risk of antibiotic treatment for diarrhoea (PDT: OR 2·5, 95% CI 1·7–3·8; PPT: OR 1·6, 95% CI 1·1–2·2). However, the effect varied among farms – some farms experienced substantial problems, while others experienced few problems after duAGPs. No effect was identified for the risk of treatment for other diseases.