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It is not clear to what extent associations between schizophrenia, cannabis use and cigarette use are due to a shared genetic etiology. We, therefore, examined whether schizophrenia genetic risk associates with longitudinal patterns of cigarette and cannabis use in adolescence and mediating pathways for any association to inform potential reduction strategies.
Associations between schizophrenia polygenic scores and longitudinal latent classes of cigarette and cannabis use from ages 14 to 19 years were investigated in up to 3925 individuals in the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children. Mediation models were estimated to assess the potential mediating effects of a range of cognitive, emotional, and behavioral phenotypes.
The schizophrenia polygenic score, based on single nucleotide polymorphisms meeting a training-set p threshold of 0.05, was associated with late-onset cannabis use (OR = 1.23; 95% CI = 1.08,1.41), but not with cigarette or early-onset cannabis use classes. This association was not mediated through lower IQ, victimization, emotional difficulties, antisocial behavior, impulsivity, or poorer social relationships during childhood. Sensitivity analyses adjusting for genetic liability to cannabis or cigarette use, using polygenic scores excluding the CHRNA5-A3-B4 gene cluster, or basing scores on a 0.5 training-set p threshold, provided results consistent with our main analyses.
Our study provides evidence that genetic risk for schizophrenia is associated with patterns of cannabis use during adolescence. Investigation of pathways other than the cognitive, emotional, and behavioral phenotypes examined here is required to identify modifiable targets to reduce the public health burden of cannabis use in the population.
A new fossil site in a previously unexplored part of western Madagascar (the Beanka Protected Area) has yielded remains of many recently extinct vertebrates, including giant lemurs (Babakotia radofilai, Palaeopropithecus kelyus, Pachylemur sp., and Archaeolemur edwardsi), carnivores (Cryptoprocta spelea), the aardvark-like Plesiorycteropus sp., and giant ground cuckoos (Coua). Many of these represent considerable range extensions. Extant species that were extirpated from the region (e.g., Prolemur simus) are also present. Calibrated radiocarbon ages for 10 bones from extinct primates span the last three millennia. The largely undisturbed taphonomy of bone deposits supports the interpretation that many specimens fell in from a rock ledge above the entrance. Some primates and other mammals may have been prey items of avian predators, but human predation is also evident. Strontium isotope ratios (87Sr/86Sr) suggest that fossils were local to the area. Pottery sherds and bones of extinct and extant vertebrates with cut and chop marks indicate human activity in previous centuries. Scarcity of charcoal and human artifacts suggests only occasional visitation to the site by humans. The fossil assemblage from this site is unusual in that, while it contains many sloth lemurs, it lacks ratites, hippopotami, and crocodiles typical of nearly all other Holocene subfossil sites on Madagascar.
BACKGROUND: IGTS is a rare phenomenon of paradoxical germ cell tumor (GCT) growth during or following treatment despite normalization of tumor markers. We sought to evaluate the frequency, clinical characteristics and outcome of IGTS in patients in 21 North-American and Australian institutions. METHODS: Patients with IGTS diagnosed from 2000-2017 were retrospectively evaluated. RESULTS: Out of 739 GCT diagnoses, IGTS was identified in 33 patients (4.5%). IGTS occurred in 9/191 (4.7%) mixed-malignant GCTs, 4/22 (18.2%) immature teratomas (ITs), 3/472 (0.6%) germinomas/germinomas with mature teratoma, and in 17 secreting non-biopsied tumours. Median age at GCT diagnosis was 10.9 years (range 1.8-19.4). Male gender (84%) and pineal location (88%) predominated. Of 27 patients with elevated markers, median serum AFP and Beta-HCG were 70 ng/mL (range 9.2-932) and 44 IU/L (range 4.2-493), respectively. IGTS occurred at a median time of 2 months (range 0.5-32) from diagnosis, during chemotherapy in 85%, radiation in 3%, and after treatment completion in 12%. Surgical resection was attempted in all, leading to gross total resection in 76%. Most patients (79%) resumed GCT chemotherapy/radiation after surgery. At a median follow-up of 5.3 years (range 0.3-12), all but 2 patients are alive (1 succumbed to progressive disease, 1 to malignant transformation of GCT). CONCLUSION: IGTS occurred in less than 5% of patients with GCT and most commonly after initiation of chemotherapy. IGTS was more common in patients with IT-only on biopsy than with mixed-malignant GCT. Surgical resection is a principal treatment modality. Survival outcomes for patients who developed IGTS are favourable.
Studies of dislocation density evolution are fundamental to improved understanding in various areas of deformation mechanics. Recent advances in cross-correlation techniques, applied to electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD) data have particularly shed light on geometrically necessary dislocation (GND) behavior. However, the framework is relatively computationally expensive—patterns are typically saved from the EBSD scan and analyzed offline. A better understanding of the impact of EBSD pattern degradation, such as binning, compression, and various forms of noise, is vital to enable optimization of rapid and low-cost GND analysis. This paper tackles the problem by setting up a set of simulated patterns that mimic real patterns corresponding to a known GND field. The patterns are subsequently degraded in terms of resolution and noise, and the GND densities calculated from the degraded patterns using cross-correlation ESBD are compared with the known values. Some confirmation of validity of the computational degradation of patterns by considering real pattern degradation is also undertaken. The results demonstrate that the EBSD technique is not particularly sensitive to lower levels of binning and image compression, but the precision is sensitive to Poisson-type noise. Some insight is also gained concerning effects of mixed patterns at a grain boundary on measured GND content.
Early in the history of schistosomiasis research, children under 5 years of age were known to be infected. Although this problem was recognized over 100 years ago, insufficient action has been taken to address this issue. Under current policy, such infected children only receive their first antiparasitic treatment (praziquantel – PZQ) upon entry into primary school as current mass drug administration programmes typically target school-aged children. For many infected children, they will wait up to 6 years before receiving their first medication and significant schistosomiasis-related morbidity may have already established. This inequity would not be accepted for other diseases. To unveil some of the reasons behind this neglect, it is paramount to understand the intricate historical relationship between schistosomiasis and British Imperial medicine, to underline its lasting influence on today's public health priorities. This review presents a perspective on the historical neglect of paediatric schistosomiasis, focusing on important gaps that persist from the early days after discovery of this parasite. Looking to end this inequity, we address several issues that need to be overcome to move forward towards the lasting success of schistosomiasis control and elimination efforts.
We carried out an extensive photometric and spectroscopic investigation of the SPB binary, HD 25558 (see Fig. 1 for the time and geographic distribution of the observations). The ~2000 spectra obtained at 13 observatories during 5 observing seasons, the ground-based multi-colour light curves and the photometric data from the MOST satellite revealed that this object is a double-lined spectroscopic binary with a very long orbital period of about 9 years. We determined the physical parameters of the components, and have found that both lie within the SPB instability strip. Accordingly, both components show line-profile variations consistent with stellar pulsations. Altogether, 11 independent frequencies and one harmonic frequency were identified in the data. The observational data do not allow the inference of a reliable orbital solution, thus, disentangling cannot be performed on the spectra. Since the lines of the two components are never completely separated, the analysis is very complicated. Nevertheless, pixel-by-pixel variability analysis of the cross-correlated line profiles was successful, and we were able to attribute all the frequencies to the primary or secondary component. Spectroscopic and photometric mode-identification was also performed for several of these frequencies of both binary components. The spectroscopic mode-identification results suggest that the inclination and rotation of the two components are rather different. While the primary is a slow rotator with ~6 d rotation period, seen at ~60° inclination, the secondary rotates fast with ~1.2 d rotation period, and is seen at ~20° inclination. Our spectropolarimetric measurements revealed that the secondary component has a magnetic field with at least a few hundred Gauss strength, while no magnetic field was detected in the primary.
The detailed analysis and results of this study will be published elsewhere.
Little is known about the effects of combined micronutrient and sugar consumption on growth and cognition. In the present study, we investigated the effects of micronutrients and sugar, alone and in combination, in a beverage on growth and cognition in schoolchildren. In a 2 × 2 factorial design, children (n 414, 6–11 years) were randomly allocated to consume beverages containing (1) micronutrients with sugar, (2) micronutrients with a non-nutritive sweetener, (3) no micronutrients with sugar or (4) no micronutrients with a non-nutritive sweetener for 8·5 months. Growth was assessed and cognition was tested using the Kaufman Assessment Battery for Children version II (KABC-II) subtests and the Hopkins Verbal Learning Test (HVLT). Micronutrients decreased the OR for Fe deficiency at the endpoint (OR 0·19; 95 % CI 0·07, 0·53). Micronutrients increased KABC Atlantis (intervention effect: 0·76; 95 % CI 0·10, 1·42) and HVLT Discrimination Index (1·00; 95 % CI 0·01, 2·00) scores. Sugar increased KABC Atlantis (0·71; 95 % CI 0·05, 1·37) and Rover (0·72; 95 % CI 0·08, 1·35) scores and HVLT Recall 3 (0·94; 95 % CI 0·15, 1·72). Significant micronutrient × sugar interaction effects on the Atlantis, Number recall, Rover and Discrimination Index scores indicated that micronutrients and sugar in combination attenuated the beneficial effects of micronutrients or sugar alone. Micronutrients or sugar alone had a lowering effect on weight-for-age z-scores relative to controls (micronutrients − 0·08; 95 % CI − 0·15, − 0·01; sugar − 0·07; 95 % CI − 0·14, − 0·002), but in combination, this effect was attenuated. The beverages with micronutrients or added sugar alone had a beneficial effect on cognition, which was attenuated when provided in combination.
This study examined whether children's coping strategies are related to post-concussive symptoms following mild traumatic brain injury (TBI) versus orthopedic injury (OI). Participants were 8- to 15-year-old children with mild TBI (n = 167) or OI (n = 84). They rated their current preferred coping strategies and post-injury symptoms at 2 weeks (baseline) and 1, 3, and 12 months post-injury. Children's reported use of coping strategies did not vary significantly over time, so their baseline coping ratings were examined as predictors of post-concussive symptoms across time. Self-ratings of symptoms were positively related to emotion-focused strategies and negatively related to problem-focused engagement after both mild TBI and OI. Higher problem-focused disengagement predicted larger group differences in children's ratings of symptoms, suggesting that problem-focused disengagement moderates the effects of mild TBI. Coping strategies collectively accounted for approximately 10–15% of the variance in children's post-concussive symptoms over time. The findings suggest that coping may play an important role in accounting for children's perceptions of post-concussive symptoms after mild TBI. (JINS, 2011, 17, 317–326)
During November and December 1981 more than 50 residents in a village in Derbyshire had an acute gastrointestinal illness. One month later a second outbreak occurred affecting another 22 people. Campylobacter jejuni was isolated from 12 patients; no other gastrointestinal pathogens were identified. A casecontrol study showed an association with the consumption of unpasteurized milk from one particular farm. No new cases were identified for 6 months following the application of a Pasteurization Order from 26 January to 23 February 1982.
The occurrence of postconcussive symptoms (PCS) following mild traumatic brain injury (TBI) in children may depend on cognitive reserve capacity. This prospective, longitudinal study examined whether the relationship between mild TBI and PCS is moderated by cognitive ability, which served as a proxy for cognitive reserve. Participants included 182 children with mild TBI and 99 children with orthopedic injuries (OI), ranging from 8 to 15 years of age when injured. Mild TBI were classified as complicated (n = 32) or uncomplicated (n = 150) depending on whether they were associated with trauma-related intracranial abnormalities on magnetic resonance imaging. PCS were assessed initially within 3 weeks of injury, and again at 1, 3, and 12 months post injury. The initial assessment also included standardized tests of children’s cognitive skills and retrospective parent ratings of pre-injury symptoms. Hierarchical linear modeling indicated that ratings of PCS were moderated jointly by cognitive ability and injury severity. Children of lower cognitive ability with a complicated mild TBI were especially prone to cognitive symptoms across time according to parents and to high acute levels of PCS according to children’s self-ratings. Cognitive reserve is an important moderator of the outcomes of mild TBI in children and adolescents. (JINS, 2010, 16, 94–105.)
Toxoplasma gondii is a highly ubiquitous and prevalent parasite. Despite the cat being the only definitive host, it is found in almost all geographical areas and warm blooded animals. Three routes of transmission are recognised: ingestion of oocysts shed by the cat, carnivory and congenital transmission. In natural populations, it is difficult to establish the relative importance of these routes. This paper reviews recent work in our laboratory which suggests that congenital transmission may be much more important than previously thought. Using PCR detection of the parasite, studies in sheep show that congenital transmission may occur in as many as 66% of pregnancies. Furthermore, in families of sheep on the same farm, exposed to the same sources of oocysts, significant divergent prevalences of Toxoplasma infection and abortion are found between different families. The data suggest that breeding from infected ewes increases the risk of subsequent abortion and infection in lambs. Congenital transmission rates in a natural population of mice were found to be 75%. Interestingly, congenital transmission rates in humans were measured at 19·8%. The results presented in these studies differ from those of other published studies and suggest that vertical transmission may be much more important than previously thought.
Three tubular electrostatic precipitators are described for the assay of bacterial and bacteriophage aerosols. Particles can be sampled directly on agar or on agar-impregnated paper in a wide range of aerosol concentrations, or sampled into a fluid for the assay of airborne micro-organisms. Rapid consecutive sampling is possible with the samplers and a collection efficiency approaching 100% is readily obtained. Their sampling efficiency is compared with that of the slit sampler and the liquid impinger.