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This article synthesises the results of a large international study on primary care (PC), the QUALICOPC study.
Since the Alma Ata Declaration, strengthening PC has been high on the policy agenda. PC is associated with positive health outcomes, but it is unclear how care processes and structures relate to patient experiences.
Survey data were collected during 2011–2013 from approximately 7000 PC physicians and 70 000 patients in 34, mainly European, countries. The data on the patients are linked to data on the PC physicians within each country and analysed using multilevel modelling.
Patients had more positive experiences when their PC physician provided a broader range of services. However, a broader range of services is also associated with higher rates of hospitalisations for uncontrolled diabetes, but rates of avoidable diabetes-related hospitalisations were lower in countries where patients had a continuous relationship with PC physicians. Additionally, patients with a long-term relationship with their PC physician were less likely to attend the emergency department. Capitation payment was associated with more positive patient experiences. Mono- and multidisciplinary co-location was related to improved processes in PC, but the experiences of patients visiting multidisciplinary practices were less positive. A stronger national PC structure and higher overall health care expenditures are related to more favourable patient experiences for continuity and comprehensiveness. The study also revealed inequities: patients with a migration background reported less positive experiences. People with lower incomes more often postponed PC visits for financial reasons. Comprehensive and accessible care processes are related to less postponement of care.
The study revealed room for improvement related to patient-reported experiences and highlighted the importance of core PC characteristics including a continuous doctor–patient relationship as well as a broad range of services offered by PC physicians.
Child maltreatment has been associated with various cumulative risk factors. However, little is known about the extent to which genetic and environmental factors contribute to individual differences between parents in perpetrating child maltreatment. To estimate the relative contribution of genetic and environmental factors to perpetrating maltreatment we used a parent-based extended family design. Child-reported perpetrated maltreatment was available for 556 parents (283 women) from 63 families. To explore reporter effects (i.e., child perspective on maltreatment), child reports were compared to multi-informant reports. Based on polygenic model analyses, most of the variance related to the perpetration of physical abuse and emotional neglect was explained by common environmental factors (physical abuse: c2 = 59%, SE = 12%, p = .006; emotional neglect: c2 = 47%, SE = 8%, p < .001) whereas genetic factors did not significantly contribute to the model. For perpetrated emotional abuse, in contrast, genetic factors did significantly contribute to perpetrated emotional abuse (h2 = 33%, SE = 8%, p < .001), whereas common environment factors did not. Multi-informant reports led to similar estimates of genetic and common environmental effects on all measures except for emotional abuse, where a multi-informant approach yielded higher estimates of the common environmental effects. Overall, estimates of unique environment, including measurement error, were lower using multi-informant reports. In conclusion, our findings suggest that genetic pathways play a significant role in perpetrating emotional abuse, while physical abuse and emotional neglect are transmitted primarily through common environmental factors. These findings imply that interventions may need to target different mechanisms dependings on maltreatment type.
We present 12-month follow-up results for a randomised controlled trial of prolonged exposure and eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing (EMDR) therapy in 85 (78.8%) participants with psychotic disorder and comorbid post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Positive effects on clinician-rated PTSD, self-rated PTSD, depression, paranoid-referential thinking and remission from schizophrenia were maintained up to 12-month follow-up. Negative post-traumatic cognitions declined in prolonged exposure and were stable in EMDR. A significant decline in social functioning was found, whereas reductions in interference of PTSD symptoms with social functioning were maintained. These results support that current PTSD guidelines apply to individuals with psychosis.
Declaration of interest
M.v.d.G. and D.v.d.B. receive income for published books on psychotic disorders and for the training of postdoctoral professionals in the treatment of psychotic disorders. A.d.J. receives income for published books on EMDR therapy and for the training of postdoctoral professionals in this method. A.v.M. receives income for published book chapters on PTSD and for the training of postdoctoral professionals in prolonged exposure. C.d.R. receives income for the training of postdoctoral professionals in EMDR therapy.
Introduction of biofortified cassava as school lunch can increase vitamin A intake, but may increase risk of other deficiencies due to poor nutrient profile of cassava. We assessed the potential effect of introducing a yellow cassava-based school lunch combined with additional food-based recommendations (FBR) on vitamin A and overall nutrient adequacy using Optifood (linear programming tool).
Cross-sectional study to assess dietary intakes (24 h recall) and derive model parameters (list of foods consumed, median serving sizes, food and food (sub)group frequency distributions, food cost). Three scenarios were modelled, namely daily diet including: (i) no school lunch; (ii) standard 5d school lunch with maize/beans; and (iii) 5d school lunch with yellow cassava. Each scenario and scenario 3 with additional FBR were assessed on overall nutrient adequacy using recommended nutrient intakes (RNI).
Primary-school children (n 150) aged 7–9 years.
Best food pattern of yellow cassava-based lunch scenario achieved 100 % RNI for six nutrients compared with no lunch (three nutrients) or standard lunch (five nutrients) scenario. FBR with yellow cassava and including small dried fish improved nutrient adequacy, but could not ensure adequate intake of fat (52 % of average requirement), riboflavin (50 % RNI), folate (59 % RNI) and vitamin A (49 % RNI).
Introduction of yellow cassava-based school lunch complemented with FBR potentially improved vitamin A adequacy, but alternative interventions are needed to ensure dietary adequacy. Optifood is useful to assess potential contribution of a biofortified crop to nutrient adequacy and to develop additional FBR to address remaining nutrient gaps.
This paper assesses a two-dimensional, vertically integrated ice model for its numerical properties in the calculation of ice-sheet evolution on a sloping bed using the shallow-ice approximation. We discuss the influence of initial conditions and individual model parameters on the model’s numerical behaviour, with emphasis on varying spatial discretizations. The modelling results suffer badly from numerical problems. They show a strong dependence on gridcell size and we conclude that the widely used gridcell spacing of 20 km is too coarse. The numerical errors are small in each single time-step, but increase non-linearly over time and with volume change, as a result of feedback of the mass balance with height. We propose a new method for the calculation of the surface gradient near the margin, which improves the results significantly. Furthermore, we show that we may use dimension analysis as a tool to explain in which situations numerical problems are to be expected.
Multi-decade observing campaigns of the globular clusters 47 Tucanae and M15 have led to an outstanding number of discoveries. Here, we report on the latest results of the long-term observations of the pulsars in these two clusters. For most of the pulsars in 47 Tucanae we have measured, among other things, their higher-order spin period derivatives, which have in turn provided stringent constraints on the physical parameters of the cluster, such as its distance and gravitational potential. For M15, we have studied the relativistic spin precession effect in PSR B2127+11C. We have used full-Stokes observations to model the precession effect, and to constrain the system geometry. We find that the visible beam of the pulsar is swiftly moving away from our line of sight and may very soon become undetectable. On the other hand, we expect to see the opposite emission beam sometime between 2041 and 2053.
This study evaluates the impact of a recent upgrade in the physics package of the regional atmospheric climate model RACMO2 on the simulated surface mass balance (SMB) of the Antarctic ice sheet. The modelled SMB increases, in particular over the grounded ice sheet of East Antarctica (+44 Gt a–1), with a small change in West Antarctica. This mainly results from an increase in precipitation, which is explained by changes in the cloud microphysics, including a new parameterization for ice cloud supersaturation, and changes in large-scale circulation patterns, which alter topographically forced precipitation. The spatial changes in SMB are evaluated using 3234 in situ SMB observations and ice-balance velocities, and the temporal variability using GRACE satellite retrievals. The in situ observations and balance velocities show a clear improvement of the spatial representation of the SMB in the interior of East Antarctica, which has become considerably wetter. No improvements are seen for West Antarctica and the coastal regions. A comparison of model SMB temporal variability with GRACE satellite retrievals shows no significant change in performance.
Supplementation with n-3 fatty acids may improve long-term outcomes of renal transplant recipients (RTR). Recent evidence suggests that EPA and DHA have different outcomes compared with α-linolenic acid (ALA). We examined the prospective associations of EPA–DHA and ALA intakes with graft failure and all-cause mortality in 637 RTR. During 3·1 years (interquartile range 2·7, 3·8) of follow-up, forty-one developed graft failure and sixty-seven died. In age- and sex-adjusted analyses, EPA–DHA and ALA intakes were not associated with graft failure. EPA–DHA intake was not significantly associated with mortality (hazard ratio (HR) 0·79; 95% CI 0·54, 1·15 per 0·1 energy% difference). ALA intake was significantly associated with mortality (HR 1·17; 95% CI 1·04, 1·31 per 0·1 energy% difference). This association remained following adjustments for BMI, proteinuria and intakes of fat, carbohydrate and protein. RTR in the highest tertile of ALA intake exhibited about 2-fold higher mortality risk (HR 2·21; 95% CI 1·23, 3·97) compared with the lowest tertile. In conclusion, ALA intake may be associated with increased mortality in RTR. Future RCT are needed to confirm these results.
The effect of temperature on the reproduction and development of Busseola fusca was studied under laboratory conditions. Single male–female pairs were confined to oviposition chambers kept at 15, 20, 26 and 30 ± 1°C and a 14L:10D photoperiod. Data on reproduction parameters were captured daily. Oviposition occurred at all the mentioned temperatures but no fertility was recorded at 30°C. The total number of eggs laid per female moth was between 300 and 400 and the optimum temperature for oviposition and fertility was between 20 and 26°C. Larval development was studied at five different temperature regimes, i.e. 15, 18, 20, 26 and 30 ± 1°C and a 14L:10D photoperiod. The most favourable temperature as well as the upper threshold temperature for larval development was between 26 and 30°C. Total development period was 152.6–52.6 days, respectively, at 15°C, and 26–30°C. The thermal constants for B. fusca was 99.50, 536.48, 246.25 and 893.66°D and lower temperature thresholds were 10.36, 8.14, 8.99 and 8.84°C, for completion of the egg, larval, pupal and egg-to-adult stages, respectively. Results on the thermal constants and lower and upper threshold temperatures of B. fusca can be used to predict the impact of climate change on the distribution and population growth of this pest.
This study presents secondary analyses of a recently published trial in which post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) patients with psychosis (n = 108) underwent 8 sessions of trauma-focused treatment, either prolonged exposure (PE) or eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing (EMDR) therapy. 24.1% fulfilled the criteria for the dissociative subtype, a newly introduced PTSD subtype in DSM-5. Treatment outcome was compared for patients with and without the dissociative subtype of PTSD. Patients with the dissociative subtype of PTSD showed large reductions in clinician-administered PTSD scale (CAPS) score, comparable with patients without the dissociative subtype of PTSD. It is concluded that even in a population with severe mental illness, patients with the dissociative subtype of PTSD do benefit from trauma-focused treatments without a pre-phase of emotion regulation skill training and should not be excluded from these treatments.
In patients with psychotic disorders, the effects of psychological post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) treatment on symptoms of psychosis, depression and social functioning are largely unknown
In a single-blind randomized controlled trial (RCT) 155 outpatients in treatment for psychosis (61.3% schizophrenic disorder, 29% schizoaffective disorder) were randomized to eight sessions prolonged exposure (PE; n = 53) or eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) (n = 55), or a waiting-list condition (WL, n = 47) for treatment of their co-morbid PTSD. Measures were performed on (1) psychosis: severity of delusions (PSYRATS-DRS), paranoid thoughts (GPTS), auditory verbal hallucinations (PSYRATS-AHRS), and remission from psychotic disorder (SCI-SR-PANSS); (2) depression (BDI-II); (3) social functioning (PSP). Outcomes were compared at baseline, post-treatment, 6-month follow-up and over all data points.
Both PE and EMDR were significantly associated with less severe paranoid thoughts post-treatment and at 6-month follow-up, and with more patients remitting from schizophrenia, at post-treatment (PE and EMDR) and over time (PE). Moreover, PE was significantly associated with a greater reduction of depression at post-treatment and at 6-month follow-up. Auditory verbal hallucinations and social functioning remained unchanged.
In patients with chronic psychotic disorders PE and EMDR not only reduced PTSD symptoms, but also paranoid thoughts. Importantly, in PE and EMDR more patients accomplished the status of their psychotic disorder in remission. Clinically, these effects are highly relevant and provide empirical support to the notion that delivering PTSD treatment to patients with psychotic disorders and PTSD deserves increasing recognition and acceptance among clinicians.
Fe fortification of centrally manufactured and frequently consumed condiments such as bouillon cubes could help prevent Fe deficiency in developing countries. However, Fe compounds that do not cause sensory changes in the fortified product, such as ferric pyrophosphate (FePP), exhibit low absorption in humans. Tetra sodium pyrophosphate (NaPP) can form soluble complexes with Fe, which could increase Fe bioavailability. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate Fe bioavailability from bouillon cubes fortified with either FePP only, FePP+NaPP, ferrous sulphate (FeSO4) only, or FeSO4+NaPP. We first conducted in vitro studies using a protocol of simulated digestion to assess the dialysable and ionic Fe, and the cellular ferritin response in a Caco-2 cell model. Second, Fe absorption from bouillon prepared from intrinsically labelled cubes (2·5 mg stable Fe isotopes/cube) was assessed in twenty-four Fe-deficient women, by measuring Fe incorporation into erythrocytes 2 weeks after consumption. Fe bioavailability in humans increased by 46 % (P<0·005) when comparing bouillons fortified with FePP only (4·4 %) and bouillons fortified with FePP+NaPP (6·4 %). Fe absorption from bouillons fortified with FeSO4 only and with FeSO4+NaPP was 33·8 and 27·8 %, respectively (NS). The outcome from the human study is in agreement with the dialysable Fe from the in vitro experiments. Our findings suggest that the addition of NaPP could be a promising strategy to increase Fe absorption from FePP-fortified bouillon cubes, and if confirmed by further research, for other fortified foods with complex food matrices as well.
As far as the protestant countries are concerned the eighteenth century, the ‘age of reason’, might as well be called ‘the age of revival’. On the one hand, we meet with a strong desire to escape the snares of this world by concentrating upon the mysteries of salvation: the road to sanctity is a narrow road, to be trodden in fear and trembling. On the other hand there are those for whom this world is a world full of new and unexpected possibilities, a world to be explored and to be made instrumental to the fulfilment of the divine plan with regard to the development of humanity in its secular context. Naturally, also in the eighteenth century ‘sanctity’ and ‘secularity’ were not seen as in themselves mutually exclusive concepts. While many revivalists looked forward to the enlightenment of this world by the knowledge of God, many men of the enlightenment saw before them the prospect of the sanctification of the world by the combined influences of reason and revelation. Some of the fathers of the enlightenment - notably Locke and Leibniz - were essentially committed to the cause of Christianity, while on the other hand protagonists of the pietist and revival movements such as Francke and Edwards cannot in fairness be accused of an anti-rational attitude and of a lack of interest in the well-being of this world. Nevertheless, within the circle of eighteenth-century protestant Christianity there were conspicuous differences with regard to the evaluation of and the attitude towards the world in which the Christian community, while living in the expectation of the kingdom, still had to find its way and its place.
Current ultra-high-risk (UHR) criteria appear insufficient to predict imminent onset of first-episode psychosis, as a meta-analysis showed that about 20% of patients have a psychotic outcome after 2 years. Therefore, we aimed to develop a stage-dependent predictive model in UHR individuals who were seeking help for co-morbid disorders.
Baseline data on symptomatology, and environmental and psychological factors of 185 UHR patients (aged 14–35 years) participating in the Dutch Early Detection and Intervention Evaluation study were analysed with Cox proportional hazard analyses.
At 18 months, the overall transition rate was 17.3%. The final predictor model included five variables: observed blunted affect [hazard ratio (HR) 3.39, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.56–7.35, p < 0.001], subjective complaints of impaired motor function (HR 5.88, 95% CI 1.21–6.10, p = 0.02), beliefs about social marginalization (HR 2.76, 95% CI 1.14–6.72, p = 0.03), decline in social functioning (HR 1.10, 95% CI 1.01–1.17, p = 0.03), and distress associated with suspiciousness (HR 1.02, 95% CI 1.00–1.03, p = 0.01). The positive predictive value of the model was 80.0%. The resulting prognostic index stratified the general risk into three risk classes with significantly different survival curves. In the highest risk class, transition to psychosis emerged on average ⩾8 months earlier than in the lowest risk class.
Predicting a first-episode psychosis in help-seeking UHR patients was improved using a stage-dependent prognostic model including negative psychotic symptoms (observed flattened affect, subjective impaired motor functioning), impaired social functioning and distress associated with suspiciousness. Treatment intensity may be stratified and personalized using the risk stratification.
Tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs) and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) may be associated with lower heart rate variability (HRV), a condition associated with increased mortality risk. We aimed to investigate the association between TCAs, SSRIs and HRV in a population-based study.
In the prospective Rotterdam Study cohort, up to five electrocardiograms (ECGs) per participant were recorded (1991–2012). Two HRV variables were studied based on 10-s ECG recordings: standard deviation of normal-to-normal RR intervals (SDNN) and root mean square of successive RR interval differences (RMSSD). We compared the HRV on ECGs recorded during use of antidepressants with the HRV on ECGs recorded during non-use of any antidepressant. Additionally, we analysed the change in HRV on consecutive ECGs. Those who started or stopped using antidepressants before the second ECG were compared with non-users on two ECGs.
We included 23 647 ECGs from 11 729 participants (59% women, mean age 64.6 years at baseline). Compared to ECGs recorded during non-use of antidepressants (n = 22 971), SDNN and RMSSD were lower in ECGs recorded during use of TCAs (n = 296) and SSRIs (n = 380). Participants who started using TCAs before the second ECG had a decrease in HRV and those who stopped had an increase in HRV compared to consistent non-users (p < 0.001). Starting or stopping SSRIs was not associated with HRV changes.
TCAs were associated with a lower HRV in all analyses, indicating a real drug effect. For SSRIs the results are mixed, indicating a weaker association, possibly due to other factors.
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is highly prevalent in patients with a psychotic disorder. Because a PTSD diagnosis is often missed in patients with psychosis in routine care, a valid screening instrument could be helpful.
To determine the validity of the Trauma Screening Questionnaire (TSQ) as a screening tool for PTSD among individuals with psychotic disorders.
Among 2608 patients with a psychotic disorder, the rate of trauma exposure was determined and the TSQ was administered to screen for PTSD. PTSD status was verified in 455 patients using the Clinician-Administered PTSD Scale (trial registration: ISRCTN 79584912).
Trauma exposure was reported by 78.2% of the 2608 patients. PTSD prevalence was estimated at 16% (95% CI 14.6–17.4%) compared with 0.5% reported in the patients' clinical charts. A TSQ cut-off score of six predicted PTSD with 78.8% sensitivity, 75.6% specificity, 44.5% correct positives and 93.6% correct negatives.
The TSQ seems to be a valid screening tool for PTSD in patients with a psychotic disorder.
Transmission experiments are useful for investigating the mechanisms of low pathogenic notifiable avian influenza virus (LPNAI) transmission. In this study, the hypothesis that inoculation-infected chickens are more infectious than contact-infected chickens was tested. To this end, extended transmission experiments with one H5N2 and one H7N1 LPAIV which had previously been characterized in a series of standard transmission experiments were conducted in specific pathogen-free (SPF) chickens. For the H5N2 LPAIV, the infectivity of contact-infected chickens was similar to the infectivity of inoculated chickens. Despite results from a previous study suggesting the H7N1 LPAIV strain to be similarly infectious to SPF chickens as the H5N2 LPAIV strain, the acquisition of contact-infected chickens proved more difficult for H7N1 LPAIV. It was assumed that this might have been a consequence of the length and timing of the exposure period. In conclusion, for LPNAIVs that first seemed equally infectious, short-term transmissibility may vary considerably.
Belemnitellid cephalopods from the Maastrichtian stratotype area (southeast Netherlands) are shown to be comparatively well preserved. Although partial diagenetic alteration has been observed, micromilling techniques have permitted the extraction of pristine belemnite calcite, suitable for the reconstruction of strontium (Sr), oxygen (O) and carbon (C) isotope variation of Maastrichtian seawater. A distinct Sr isotope pattern in the Maastricht record can be matched stratigraphically with records from Hemmoor (northern Germany), El Kef (Tunisia) and ODP site 690 (Maud Rise, Antarctica), leading to a new chemostratigraphical age model for the Maastrichtian stratotype section. Our data improve currently applied strontium isotope stratigraphical reference curves by revealing an Sr isotope inflection pattern near the lower/upper Maastrichtian boundary that is a potentially diagnostic feature for intra-Maastrichtian stratigraphical correlation between distant sections. Belemnites further show significant stratigraphical oxygen isotope variation through the Maastrichtian. We interpret this variation to have resulted from palaeoceanographic reorganisations in the Atlantic Ocean during this time interval.
In biological control, successful establishment of a natural enemy species depends on its adaptability in the introduced range including its ability to re-establish desired ecological interactions with the pest. These are affected by genetic parameters hitherto largely unresolved in biological control. The larger grain borer (LGB), Prostephanus truncatus, an invasive species from meso-America, is the most important post-harvest pest of maize in Africa. We studied the genetic structure of Teretrius nigrescens, a predatory beetle previously released for the control of the pest in Africa, to test the hypothesis that establishment patterns were a result of ecotype–environment mismatch and to follow up on our earlier reports of distinct lineages of the predator. We studied 13 populations of T. nigrescens, using 16 polymorphic microsatellite markers. Five genetic populations with a hierarchical structure and significant isolation by distance were detected. The most diverse population was found in southern Mexico, consistent with earlier lineage coexistence observations. Populations introduced to Africa maintained genetic similarity to local geographic populations of their area of origin. The more successful Benin releases were also more genetically diverse. Loss of rare alleles and a higher frequency of existing private alleles in some populations indicated population expansions following bottleneck events. Sustainable biological control should accommodate pest and natural enemy species, and monitor genetic changes associated with introduction and release.
Aquatic wild birds are often carriers of low-pathogenic avian influenza viruses (LPAIVs). If H5 and H7 LPAIVs are transmitted to poultry and have the opportunity to circulate, a highly pathogenic AIV may arise. Contact with aquatic wild birds is one of the most important ways in which these LPAIVs can be introduced into poultry flocks. In this study, the transmissibility of a duck-originated H5 LPAIV between ducks and chickens was analysed in a series of animal experiments, using different transmission routes. Results indicate that the outcome of virus intake by chickens exposed to infectious ducks depends on the way the virus is presented. Faecally contaminated drinking water proved to be the most efficient route by which the virus can be transmitted to chickens. The results from this study also suggest that some duck-originated H5 LPAIVs may be introduced to poultry but do not have the potential to become established in poultry populations.