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Ascarid parasites infect a variety of hosts and regular anthelmintic treatment is recommended for all species. Parascaris spp. is the only ascarid species with widespread anthelmintic resistance, which allows for the study of resistance mechanisms. The purpose of this study was to establish an in vitro drug exposure protocol for adult anthelmintic-naïve Parascaris spp. and report a preliminary transcriptomic analysis in response to drug exposure. Live worms were harvested from foal necropsies and maintained in RPMI-1640 at 37 °C. Serial dilutions of oxibendazole (OBZ) and ivermectin (IVM) were prepared for in vitro drug exposure, and worm viability was monitored over time. In a second drug trial, worms were used for transcriptomic analysis. The final drug concentrations employed were OBZ at 40.1 μm (10 μg mL−1) and IVM at 1.1 μm (1 μg mL−1) for 24 and 3 h, respectively. The RNA-seq analysis revealed numerous differentially expressed genes, with some being potentially related to drug detoxification and regulatory mechanisms. This report provides a method for in vitro drug exposure and the phenotypic responses for Parascaris spp., which could be extrapolated to other ascarid parasites. Finally, it also provides preliminary transcriptomic data following drug exposure as a reference point for future studies of Parascaris spp.
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.
In vitro maintenance of helminth parasites enables a variety of molecular, pharmaceutical and immunological analyses. Currently, the nutritional and environmental in vitro requirements of the equine ascarid parasite, Parascaris spp., have not been determined. Additionally, an objective method for assessing viability of Parascaris spp. intestinal stages does not exist. The purpose of this study was to ascertain the in vitro requirements of intestinal stages of Parascaris spp., and to develop a viability assessment method. A total of 1045 worms were maintained in a total of 212 cultures. Worms obtained from naturally infected foals at necropsy were immediately placed in culture flasks containing 200 mL of culture media. A variety of media types, nutrient supplementation and environmental conditions were examined. A motility-based scoring system was used to assess worm viability. Worms maintained in Roswell Park Memorial Institute-1640 had significantly better viability than any other media (P < 0.0001) and all media types supplemented with any of the nutrients examined (P < 0.0001). The use of a platform rocker also significantly improved viability (P = 0.0305). This is the first study to examine the requirements for maintaining Parascaris spp. intestinal stages in vitro and to evaluate their viability based on movement using an objective scoring system.
The postpartum period is well-known risk period for the first onset of autoimmune thyroid disorders (AITDs) as well as first onset of psychiatric disorders. These two disorders are some of the most prevalent medical conditions postpartum, often misdiagnosed and disabling if left untreated. Our study was designed to explore the possible bidirectional association between AITDs and psychiatric disorders during the postpartum period.
A population-based cohort study through linkage of Danish national registers, which comprised 312 779 women who gave birth to their first child during 1997–2010. We conducted Poisson regression analysis to estimate the incidence rate ratio (IRR) of psychiatric disorders among women with first-onset AITDs, the IRR of AITDs among women with first-onset psychiatric disorders as well as the overlap between these disorders using a comorbidity index.
Women with first-onset AITDs postpartum were more likely to have first-onset psychiatric disorders than women who did not have postpartum AITDs (IRR = 1.88, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.25–2.81). Women with first-onset postpartum psychiatric disorders had a higher risk of AITDs than women with no psychiatric disorders (IRR = 2.16, 95% CI: 1.45–3.20). The comorbidity index 2 years after delivery was 2.26 (95% CI: 1.61–2.90), indicating a comorbidity between first-onset AITDs and psychiatric disorders.
First-onset AITDs and psychiatric disorders co-occur in the postpartum period, which has relevance to further studies on the etiologies of these disorders and why childbirth in particular triggers the onset.
Dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DEXA) has been used to assess body composition in dogs and cats in several studies, but studies are difficult to compare for several reasons. The aim of the present study was to evaluate whether positioning of dogs or cats in either dorsal or ventral recumbency during DEXA scanning influences results. Dogs and cats that were brought to the University Hospital for Companion Animals for euthanasia during the period 15 September–6 November 2015 were consecutively recruited if owners signed a written consent. Following euthanasia and before rigor mortis, the animals were body condition scored (BCS, nine-point scale) and DEXA scanned. DEXA measurements of total body mass (TBM), bone mineral content (BMC), bone mineral density (BMD), lean soft tissue mass (LSTM) and body fat (BF) were performed five times in ventral and two times in dorsal recumbency on each animal. Differences between positioning were analysed using Student's t test or Wilcoxon's test depending on normality of the data. A total of thirteen dogs and seven cats of different breeds, size, sexes and age were included. The CV for DEXA parameters in ventral or dorsal recumbency were, for dogs, TBM ≤ 0·1 %, BMC ≤ 1·63 %, BMD ≤ 1·29 %, LSTM ≤ 0·89 % and BF ≤ 1·52 %; and, for cats, TBM ≤ 0·08 %, BMC ≤ 0·61 %, BMD ≤ 0·49 %, LSTM ≤ 0·45 % and BF ≤ 0·88 %. In both positions, a good correlation was found for dogs (r 0·84–0·85; P < 0·0003) and cats (r 0·89–0·90; P < 0·0081) between the nine-point BCS system and BF percentage measured by DEXA. Ventral and dorsal recumbency provides comparable results, except that BMD measures were higher in dorsal recumbency (P < 0·0004).
Alzheimer's disease (AD), the most common disease causing dementia, is linked to increased mortality. However, the effect of antipsychotic use on specific causes of mortality has not yet been investigated thoroughly.
Utilizing the Danish nationwide registers, we defined a cohort of patients diagnosed with AD. Utilizing separate Cox regressions for specific causes of mortality, we investigated the effects of cumulative antipsychotic dosage after diagnosis and current antipsychotic exposure in the time period 2000–2011.
In total, 45,894 patients were followed for 3,803,996 person-years. A total of 6129 cardiovascular related deaths, 2088 cancer related deaths, 1620 infection related deaths, and 28 intentional self-harm related deaths are presented. Current antipsychotic exposure increased mortality rate with HR between 1.92 and 2.31 for cardiovascular, cancer, and infection related death. Cumulative antipsychotic dosages were most commonly associated with increased rates of mortality for cardiovascular and infection as cause of death, whereas the associations were less clear with cancer and intentional self-harm as cause of death.
We showed that cumulative antipsychotic drug dosages increased mortality rates for cardiovascular and infection as cause of death. These findings highlight the need for further investigations of long-term effects of treatment and of possible sub-groups who could benefit from treatment.
Many new approaches have been developed to treat borderline personality disorder (BPD) by means of psychotherapy. Though there is a clear research trend towards short-interventions, the evidence from randomised controlled trials (RCT) on longer-term programmes still accumulates. On the one hand, well-established treatments like Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) or Mentalisation-Based Treatment (MBT) are now subject to real-world effectiveness studies; on the other hand, new dynamic approaches have been studied, lasting longer than 6 months.
We are currently updating the cochrane Collaboration review on psychological interventions for BPD. First findings on the effects of longer-term psychotherapies will be presented.
We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) according to cochrane collaboration standards. Any randomized comparisons of psychological interventions versus unspecific control interventions, waitlist or specific psychotherapeutic interventions in adult BPD patients were eligible. Primary outcomes were BPD core pathology as depicted by DSM criteria. Secondary outcomes included associated pathology, i.e., depression and anxiety, general psychopathology severity and functioning as well as tolerability and safety. Two researchers selected trials, assessed quality and extracted data independently.
The current evidence of longer-term psychological interventions in general, and the types of interventions for which RCT evidence is available will be evaluated and critically discussed.
Disclosure of interest
The authors declare that they have no competing interest.
Adverse psychosocial working environments characterized by job strain (the combination of high demands and low control at work) are associated with an increased risk of depressive symptoms among employees, but evidence on clinically diagnosed depression is scarce. We examined job strain as a risk factor for clinical depression.
We identified published cohort studies from a systematic literature search in PubMed and PsycNET and obtained 14 cohort studies with unpublished individual-level data from the Individual-Participant-Data Meta-analysis in Working Populations (IPD-Work) Consortium. Summary estimates of the association were obtained using random-effects models. Individual-level data analyses were based on a pre-published study protocol.
We included six published studies with a total of 27 461 individuals and 914 incident cases of clinical depression. From unpublished datasets we included 120 221 individuals and 982 first episodes of hospital-treated clinical depression. Job strain was associated with an increased risk of clinical depression in both published [relative risk (RR) = 1.77, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.47–2.13] and unpublished datasets (RR = 1.27, 95% CI 1.04–1.55). Further individual participant analyses showed a similar association across sociodemographic subgroups and after excluding individuals with baseline somatic disease. The association was unchanged when excluding individuals with baseline depressive symptoms (RR = 1.25, 95% CI 0.94–1.65), but attenuated on adjustment for a continuous depressive symptoms score (RR = 1.03, 95% CI 0.81–1.32).
Job strain may precipitate clinical depression among employees. Future intervention studies should test whether job strain is a modifiable risk factor for depression.
Dietary long-chain n-3 PUFA (n-3 LCPUFA) in infancy may have long-term effects on lifestyle disease risk. The present follow-up study investigated whether maternal fish oil (FO) supplementation during lactation affected growth and blood pressure in adolescents and whether the effects differed between boys and girls. Mother–infant pairs (n 103) completed a randomised controlled trial with FO (1·5 g/d n-3 LCPUFA) or olive oil (OO) supplements during the first 4 months of lactation; forty-seven mother–infant pairs with high fish intake were followed-up for 4 months as the reference group. We also followed-up 100 children with assessment of growth, blood pressure, diet by FFQ and physical activity by 7-d accelerometry at 13·5 (sd 0·4) years of age. Dried whole-blood fatty acid composition was analysed in a subgroup (n 49). At 13 years of age, whole-blood n-3 LCPUFA, diet, physical activity and body composition did not differ between the three groups. The children from the FO group were 3·4 (95 % CI 0·2, 6·6) cm shorter (P=0·035) than those from the OO group, and tended to have less advanced puberty (P=0·068), which explained the difference in height. There was a sex-specific effect on diastolic blood pressure (Psex×group=0·020), which was driven by a 3·9 (95 % CI 0·2, 7·5) mmHg higher diastolic blood pressure in the FO compared with the OO group among boys only (P=0·041). Our results indicate that early n-3 LCPUFA intake may reduce height in early adolescence due to a delay in pubertal maturation and increase blood pressure specifically in boys, thereby tending to counteract existing sex differences.
Psychosocial therapy after deliberate self-harm might be associated with reduced risk of specific causes of death.
In this matched cohort study, we included patients, who after an episode of deliberate self-harm received psychosocial therapy at a Suicide Prevention Clinic in Denmark between 1992 and 2010. We used propensity score matching in a 1:3 ratio to select a comparison group from 59 046 individuals who received standard care. National Danish registers supplied data on specific causes of death over a 20-year follow-up period.
At the end of follow-up, 391 (6.9%) of 5678 patients in the psychosocial therapy group had died, compared with 1736 (10.2%) of 17 034 patients in the matched comparison group. Lower odds ratios of dying by mental or behavioural disorders [0.54, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.37–0.79], alcohol-related causes (0.63, 95% CI 0.50–0.80) and other diseases and medical conditions (0.61, 95% CI 0.49–0.77) were noted in the psychosocial therapy group. Also, we found a reduced risk of dying by suicide as well as other external causes, however, not by neoplasms and circulatory system diseases. Numbers needed to treat were 212.9 (95% CI 139.5–448.4) for mental or behavioural disorders as a cause of death, 111.1 (95% CI 79.2–210.5) for alcohol-related causes and 96.8 (95% CI 69.1–161.8) for other diseases and medical conditions.
Our findings indicate that psychosocial therapy after deliberate self-harm might reduce long-term risk of death from select medical conditions and external causes. These promising results should be tested in a randomized design.
Mutants of Bacillus subtilis can be developed to overproduce Val in vitro. It was hypothesized that addition of Bacillus subtilis mutants to pig diets can be a strategy to supply the animal with Val. The objective was to investigate the effect of Bacillus subtilis mutants on growth performance and blood amino acid (AA) concentrations when fed to piglets. Experiment 1 included 18 pigs (15.0±1.1 kg) fed one of three diets containing either 0.63 or 0.69 standardized ileal digestible (SID) Val : Lys, or 0.63 SID Val : Lys supplemented with a Bacillus subtilis mutant (mutant 1). Blood samples were obtained 0.5 h before feeding and at 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 h after feeding and analyzed for AAs. In Experiment 2, 80 piglets (9.1±1.1 kg) were fed one of four diets containing 0.63 or 0.67 SID Val : Lys, or 0.63 SID Val : Lys supplemented with another Bacillus subtilis mutant (mutant 2) or its parent wild type. Average daily feed intake, daily weight gain and feed conversion ratio were measured on days 7, 14 and 21. On day 17, blood samples were taken and analyzed for AAs. On days 24 to 26, six pigs from each dietary treatment were fitted with a permanent jugular vein catheter, and blood samples were taken for AA analysis 0.5 h before feeding and at 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 h after feeding. In experiment 1, Bacillus subtilis mutant 1 tended (P<0.10) to increase the plasma levels of Val at 2 and 3 h post-feeding, but this was not confirmed in Experiment 2. In Experiment 2, Bacillus subtilis mutant 2 and the wild type did not result in a growth performance different from the negative and positive controls. In conclusion, results obtained with the mutant strains of Bacillus subtilis were not better than results obtained with the wild-type strain, and for both strains, the results were not different than the negative control.
We analyzed birth order differences in means and variances of height and body mass index (BMI) in monozygotic (MZ) and dizygotic (DZ) twins from infancy to old age. The data were derived from the international CODATwins database. The total number of height and BMI measures from 0.5 to 79.5 years of age was 397,466. As expected, first-born twins had greater birth weight than second-born twins. With respect to height, first-born twins were slightly taller than second-born twins in childhood. After adjusting the results for birth weight, the birth order differences decreased and were no longer statistically significant. First-born twins had greater BMI than the second-born twins over childhood and adolescence. After adjusting the results for birth weight, birth order was still associated with BMI until 12 years of age. No interaction effect between birth order and zygosity was found. Only limited evidence was found that birth order influenced variances of height or BMI. The results were similar among boys and girls and also in MZ and DZ twins. Overall, the differences in height and BMI between first- and second-born twins were modest even in early childhood, while adjustment for birth weight reduced the birth order differences but did not remove them for BMI.
The layered agpaitic nepheline syenites (kakortokites) of the Ilímaussaq complex, South Greenland, host voluminous accumulations of eudialyte-group minerals (EGM). These complex Na-Ca-zirconosilicates contain economically attractive levels of Zr, Nb and rare-earth elements (REE), but have commonly undergone extensive autometasomatic/hydrothermal alteration to a variety of secondary mineral assemblages. Three EGM alteration assemblages are recognized, characterized by the secondary zirconosilicates catapleiite, zircon and gittinsite. Theoretical petrogenetic grid models are constructed to assess mineral stabilities in terms of component activities in the late-stage melts and fluids. Widespread alteration of EGM to catapleiite records an overall increase in water activity, and reflects interaction of EGM with late-magmatic Na-, Cl- and F-rich aqueous fluids at the final stages of kakortokite crystallization. Localized alteration of EGM and catapleiite to the rare Ca-Zr silicate gittinsite, previously unidentified at Ilímaussaq, requires an increase in CaO activity and suggests post-magmatic interaction with Ca-Sr bearing aqueous fluids. The pseudomorphic replacement of EGM in the kakortokites was not found to be associated with significant remobilization of the primary Zr, Nb and REE mineralization, regardless of the high concentrations of potential transporting ligands such as F and Cl. We infer that the immobile behaviour essentially reflects the neutral to basic character of the late-magmatic fluids, in which REE-F compounds are insoluble and remobilization of REE as Cl complexes is inhibited by precipitation of nacareniobsite-(Ce) and various Ca-REE silicates. A subsequent decrease in F– activity would furthermore restrict the mobility of Zr as hydroxyl-fluoride complexes, and promote precipitation of the secondary zirconosilicates within the confines of the replaced EGM domains.
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.
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.
Recent advances in research tools for the systematic analysis of textual data are enabling exciting new research throughout the social sciences. For comparative politics, scholars who are often interested in non-English and possibly multilingual textual datasets, these advances may be difficult to access. This article discusses practical issues that arise in the processing, management, translation, and analysis of textual data with a particular focus on how procedures differ across languages. These procedures are combined in two applied examples of automated text analysis using the recently introduced Structural Topic Model. We also show how the model can be used to analyze data that have been translated into a single language via machine translation tools. All the methods we describe here are implemented in open-source software packages available from the authors.
Bent-double sources, sometimes referred to as wide- or narrow-angle tails, are most likely the result of ram pressure from either the motion of the source through a dense medium or the "cluster weather." These unusual sources have long been associated with high density, high velocity dispersion, and turbulent environments of massive clusters, however a surprising number have been found in lower mass systems. We focus our attention on a sample of such sources in galaxy groups where the velocity dispersion is significantly lower. We have acquired multi-frequency radio continuum observations using the GMRT of our bent-double sample and new optical spectroscopy to measure the velocity dispersion of groups hosting these bent-double sources. Our goal is to derive an estimate of the density of the intergalactic medium in these groups. Here, we present GMRT data for one source in our sample.
Campylobacter is the most prevalent cause of bacterial gastroenteritis worldwide and it represents a significant public health risk of increasing severity due to its escalating resistance to clinically important quinolone and macrolide antibiotics. As a zoonotic pathogen Campylobacter is transmitted along the food chain and naturally cycles from environmental waters, feedstuff, animals and food to humans. We determined antibiotic resistance profiles, as well as multilocus sequence types and flaA-SVR types for 52 C. jejuni isolated in Slovenia from human, animal, raw and cured chicken meat and water samples. Twenty-eight different sequence types, arranged in ten clonal complexes, three new allele types and five new sequence types were identified, indicating the relatively high diversity in a small group of strains. The assignment of strains from different sources to the same clonal complexes indicates their transmission along the food supply chain. The most prevalent clonal complex was CC21, which was also the genetic group with 95% of quinolone-resistant strains. Based on the genetic relatedness of these quinolone-resistant strains identified by polymerase chain reaction with a mismatch amplification mutation assay and sequencing of the quinolone resistance-determining region of the gyrA gene, we conclude that the high resistance prevalence observed indicates the local clonal spread of quinolone resistance with CC21.