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The links between low socioeconomic status and poor health are well established, yet despite adversity, some individuals with low socioeconomic status appear to avoid these negative consequences through adaptive coping. Previous research found a set of strategies, called shift-and-persist (shifting the self to stressors while persisting by finding meaning), to be particularly adaptive for individuals with low socioeconomic status, who typically face more uncontrollable stressors. This study tested (a) whether perceived social status, similar to objective socioeconomic status, would moderate the link between shift-and-persist and health, and (b) whether a specific uncontrollable stressor, unfair treatment, would similarly moderate the health correlates of shift-and-persist. A sample of 308 youth (Meanage = 13.0, range 8–17), physician diagnosed with asthma, completed measures of shift-and-persist, unfair treatment, asthma control, and quality of life in the lab, and 2 weeks of daily diaries about their asthma symptoms. Parents reported on perceived family social status. Results indicated that shift-and-persist was associated with better asthma profiles, only among youth from families with lower (vs. higher) parent-reported perceived social status. Shift-and-persist was also associated with better asthma profiles, only among youth who experienced more (vs. less) unfair treatment. These findings suggest that the adaptive values of coping strategies for youth with asthma depend on the family's perceived social status and on the stressor experienced.
We describe the performance of the Boolardy Engineering Test Array, the prototype for the Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder telescope. Boolardy Engineering Test Array is the first aperture synthesis radio telescope to use phased array feed technology, giving it the ability to electronically form up to nine dual-polarisation beams. We report the methods developed for forming and measuring the beams, and the adaptations that have been made to the traditional calibration and imaging procedures in order to allow BETA to function as a multi-beam aperture synthesis telescope. We describe the commissioning of the instrument and present details of Boolardy Engineering Test Array’s performance: sensitivity, beam characteristics, polarimetric properties, and image quality. We summarise the astronomical science that it has produced and draw lessons from operating Boolardy Engineering Test Array that will be relevant to the commissioning and operation of the final Australian Square Kilometre Array Path telescope.
Indonesia has the highest human mortality from highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) A (H5N1) virus infection in the world.
A survey of households (N=2520) measured treatment sources and beliefs among symptomatic household members. A survey of physicians (N=554) in various types of health care facilities measured knowledge, assessment and testing behaviors, and perceived clinical capacity.
Households reported confidence in health care system capacity but infrequently sought treatment for potential HPAI H5N1 signs/symptoms. More clinicians were confident in their knowledge of diagnosis and treatment than in the adequacy of related equipment and resources at their facilities. Physicians expressed awareness of the HPAI H5N1 suspect case definition, yet expressed only moderate knowledge in questioning symptomatic patients about exposures. Self-reported likelihood of testing for HPAI H5N1 virus was high after learning of certain exposures. Knowledge of antiviral treatment was moderate, but it was higher among clinicians in puskesmas. Physicians in private outpatient clinics, the most heavily used facilities, reported the lowest confidence in their diagnostic and treatment capabilities.
Educational campaigns can encourage recall of possible poultry exposure when patients are experiencing signs/symptoms and can raise awareness of the effectiveness of antivirals to drive people to seek health care. Clinicians may benefit from training regarding exposure assessment and referral procedures, particularly in private clinics. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2016;10:838–847)
Not only is depression associated with increased inflammation but inflammation is a risk factor for the genesis of depression. Many of the environmental risk factors for depression are transduced through inflammatory signaling. Anti-inflammatory agents show promise for the management of depression in preclinical, epidemiological, and early clinical studies. This opens the door to the potential for anti-inflammatory agents to treat and prevent depression. There are no evidence-based pharmacotherapies for depression prevention.
ASPREE-D, aspirin in the prevention of depression in the elderly, is a sub study of ASPREE, which explores the potential of aspirin to prevent a range of inflammation related disorders in the elderly. With a sample size of 19,114, and a duration of 5 years, this placebo controlled study will be one of the largest randomized controlled trials in psychiatry and will provide definitive evidence on the ability of aspirin to prevent depression.
This paper presents the rationale for the study and presents a summary of the study design.
ASPREE-D may not only define novel therapy but will provide mechanistic proof of concept of the role of inflammation in depression.
Our knowledge of the universe comes from recording the photon and particle fluxes incident on the Earth from space. We thus require sensitive measurement across the entire energy spectrum, using large telescopes with efficient instrumentation located on superb sites. Technological advances and engineering constraints are nearing the point where we are recording as many photons arriving at a site as is possible. Major advances in the future will come from improving the quality of the site. The ultimate site is, of course, beyond the Earth’s atmosphere, such as on the Moon, but economic limitations prevent our exploiting this avenue to the degree that the scientific community desires. Here we describe an alternative, which offers many of the advantages of space for a fraction of the cost: the Antarctic Plateau.
Many of the X-ray pulsars for which X-ray lightcurves have been presented in the literature exhibit asymmetric emission beams. We postulate the existence of an off-centre magnetic dipole field embedded in the rotating neutron star and show that such a field leads to varying rates of matter transfer between an accretion dise and the neutron star surface, over a rotation period. Assuming that the accretion rate onto the surface is simply related to the luminosity, we show that most of the observed asymmetries can be accounted for by this mechanism.
To investigate the use of community-supported agriculture (CSA) as an employer-based health promotion intervention.
Quasi-experimental study using a convenience sample of employees at three employers.
Participants and controls from three Minnesota employers completed baseline and follow-up health assessments and surveys about their experiences with CSA.
A total of 324 participants purchased a CSA share and were eligible for study inclusion. Study participants were matched by age, sex, employer and occupation to a non-randomized control group of individuals who did not purchase a CSA share but completed health assessments during the same time frame as the study participants.
The majority of participants were female, white, middle-aged and highly educated. The most common reason for purchasing a CSA share was a desire for fresh food, and the majority of participants were satisfied with their experience. Participants reported a significant increase in the number of vegetables present in the household and the frequency of family meals. The frequency of eating out decreased significantly, especially at fast-food restaurants. Participants also reported an increase in the amount and variety of produce consumed. However, health assessment data did not show significant changes in dietary intake, health status or BMI.
CSA participation was associated with improvement in some aspects of the household environment and dietary behaviours. Further research is needed to determine whether employer-based CSA interventions may also lead to improvements in dietary intake and health.
This paper describes the system architecture of a newly constructed radio telescope – the Boolardy engineering test array, which is a prototype of the Australian square kilometre array pathfinder telescope. Phased array feed technology is used to form multiple simultaneous beams per antenna, providing astronomers with unprecedented survey speed. The test array described here is a six-antenna interferometer, fitted with prototype signal processing hardware capable of forming at least nine dual-polarisation beams simultaneously, allowing several square degrees to be imaged in a single pointed observation. The main purpose of the test array is to develop beamforming and wide-field calibration methods for use with the full telescope, but it will also be capable of limited early science demonstrations.
We have developed a 350 μm radiometer to perform automated site testing in remote regions of Antarctica. In summer 2000–2001 the instrument operated at Concordia, a new station under construction at Dome C on the Antarctic Plateau. We present the results, and compare them with the atmospheric opacity measured at the South Pole in the same five-week period. During these five weeks, observing conditions at Dome C were, on average, substantially better than those at the South Pole.
We describe the specifications, characteristics, calibration, and analysis of data from the University of New South Wales Infrared Fabry–Perot (UNSWIRF) etalon. UNSWIRF is a near-infrared tunable imaging spectrometer, used primarily in conjunction with IRIS on the AAT, but suitable for use as a visitor instrument at other telescopes. The etalon delivers a resolving power in excess of 4000 (corresponding to a velocity resolution ∼75 km s−1), and allows imaging of fields up to 100″ in diameter on the AAT at any wavelength between 1·5 and 2·4 μm for which suitable blocking filters are available.
The scientific literature contains evidence suggesting that women who have been treated for breast cancer may, as a result of their diagnosis, increase their phyto-oestrogen (PE) intake. In the present paper, we describe the creation of a dietary analysis database (based on Dietplan6) for the determination of dietary intakes of specific PE (daidzein, genistein, glycitein, formononetin, biochanin A, coumestrol, matairesinol and secoisolariciresinol), in a group of women previously diagnosed and treated for postmenopausal breast cancer. The design of the database, data evaluation criteria, literature data entry for 551 foods and primary analysis by LC–MS/MS of an additional thirty-four foods for which there were no published data are described. The dietary intake of 316 women previously treated for postmenopausal breast cancer informed the identification of potential food and beverage sources of PE and the bespoke dietary analysis database was created to, ultimately, quantify their PE intake. In order that PE exposure could be comprehensively described, fifty-four of the 316 subjects completed a 24 h urine collection, and their urinary excretion results allowed for the description of exposure to include those identified as ‘equol producers’.
To examine the association between frequency of assisting with home meal preparation and fruit and vegetable preference and self-efficacy for making healthier food choices among grade 5 children in Alberta, Canada.
A cross-sectional survey design was used. Children were asked how often they helped prepare food at home and rated their preference for twelve fruits and vegetables on a 3-point Likert-type scale. Self-efficacy was measured with six items on a 4-point Likert-type scale asking children their level of confidence in selecting and eating healthy foods at home and at school.
Schools (n 151) located in Alberta, Canada.
Grade 5 students (n 3398).
A large majority (83–93 %) of the study children reported helping in home meal preparation at least once monthly. Higher frequency of helping prepare and cook food at home was associated with higher fruit and vegetable preference and with higher self-efficacy for selecting and eating healthy foods.
Encouraging children to be more involved in home meal preparation could be an effective health promotion strategy. These findings suggest that the incorporation of activities teaching children how to prepare simple and healthy meals in health promotion programmes could potentially lead to improvement in dietary habits.
The increasing prevalence of obesity among youth has elicited calls for schools to become more active in promoting healthy weight. The present study examined associations between various aspects of school food environments (specifically the availability of snack- and beverage-vending machines and the presence of snack and beverage logos) and students’ weight status, as well as potential influences of indices of diet and food behaviours.
A cross-sectional, self-administered web-based survey. A series of multinomial logistic regressions with generalized estimating equations (GEE) were constructed to examine associations between school environment variables (i.e. the reported presence of beverage- and snack-vending machines and logos) and self-reported weight- and diet-related behaviours.
Secondary schools in Alberta, Canada.
A total of 4936 students from grades 7 to 10.
The presence of beverage-vending machines in schools was associated with the weight status of students. The presence of snack-vending machines and logos was associated with students’ frequency of consuming vended goods. The presence of snack-vending machines and logos was associated with the frequency of salty snack consumption.
The reported presence of snack- and beverage-vending machines and logos in schools is related to some indices of weight status, diet and meal behaviours but not to others. The present study supported the general hypothesis that the presence of vending machines in schools may affect students’ weight through increased consumption of vended goods, but notes that the frequency of ‘junk’ food consumption does not seem to be related to the presence of vending machines, perhaps reflecting the ubiquity of these foods in the daily lives of students.
In addition to deficits in delayed recall, recent research suggests that participants with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI) demonstrate diminished use of strategic encoding strategies during learning. Few studies have explored the cognitive mechanisms underlying this deficit. The aim of this study was to investigate in aMCI whether components of working memory (executive attention – attention set-shifting, dividing and focusing attention; and episodic buffer functions – strategic retrieval and manipulation of information) predict strategic encoding strategies during learning (semantic clustering). Thirty-three participants with aMCI and 33 healthy older adults (HOA) were administered neuropsychological tests assessing word-list learning and working memory. The aMCI group demonstrated significant impairment in acquisition, retrieval of information, and decreased use of semantic clustering strategies. Use of semantic clustering in the aMCI group was not predicted by measures of executive attention or phonemic verbal fluency, but was predicted by semantic verbal fluency performance. In the HOA group, semantic clustering was strongly related to semantic verbal fluency. These findings suggest that in aMCI, diminished strategic encoding strategies during learning (semantic clustering) is selectively related to the strategic function of the episodic buffer, but only when in interaction with the manipulation and retrieval of semantic associations. (JINS, 2010, 16, 342–351.)
The purpose of the present paper is to provide an integrated overview of the research methodology and key findings from a decade of research on family meals as part of Project EAT (Eating Among Teens), a large, population-based study of adolescents.
Focus groups conducted with 141 middle-school and high-school adolescents suggested the importance of family meals in influencing adolescents’ food choices. These findings led to the inclusion of questions on family meals in the Project EAT-I survey, completed by 4746 middle-school and high-school students, and in the Project EAT-II longitudinal survey, completed by 2516 of the original participants five years later. A subset of 902 parents also participated in telephone interviews as part of Project EAT-I.
Findings indicate that many adolescents and parents view family meals in a positive light, but there is great diversity in the context and frequency of family meal patterns in the homes of adolescents. Findings further suggest that family meals may have benefits in terms of dietary intake, disordered eating behaviours, substance use and psychosocial health.
Findings from Project EAT, in conjunction with other research studies on family meals, suggest the importance of working with families to increase the frequency and improve the quality of family meals. Further research is needed in order to elucidate the pathways that underpin the relationships between family meals and health outcomes. Suggestions for a future research agenda based on what was learned from Project EAT are provided.
To assess the overall diet quality of a sample of adolescents living in Alberta, Canada, and evaluate whether diet quality, nutrient intakes, meal behaviours (i.e. meal skipping and consuming meals away from home) and physical activity are related.
A cross-sectional study design. Students completed the self-administered Web-Survey of Physical Activity and Nutrition (Web-SPAN). Students were classified as having poor, average or superior diet quality based on Canada’s Food Guide to Healthy Eating (CFGHE).
One hundred and thirty-six schools (37 %) within forty-four public and private school boards (75 %) in Alberta, Canada.
Grade 7 to 10 Alberta students (n 4936) participated in the school-based research.
On average, students met macronutrient requirements; however, micronutrient and fibre intakes were suboptimal. Median CFGHE food group intakes were below recommendations. Those with poor diet quality (42 %) had lower intakes of protein, fibre and low-calorie beverages; higher intakes of carbohydrates, fat and Other Foods (e.g. foods containing mostly sugar, high-salt/fat foods, high-calorie beverages, low-calorie beverages and high-sugar/fat foods); a lower frequency of consuming breakfast and a higher frequency of consuming meals away from home; and a lower level of physical activity when compared with students with either average or superior diet quality.
Alberta adolescents were not meeting minimum CFGHE recommendations, and thus had suboptimal intakes and poor diet quality. Suboptimal nutritional intakes, meal behaviours and physical inactivity were all related to poor diet quality and reflect the need to target these health behaviours in order to improve diet quality and overall health and wellness.