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This paper reviews the efficacy of a community psychosocial arts program focused on building mental health capacity within post-Ebola Liberia. The aim of this paper was to evaluate the outcome effects of two groups using pre- and post-treatment data. We hypothesized that there would be a difference in symptoms pre- and post-treatment, and the longer program would yield more significant results.
There was a total of 870 child participants. Of 40 sites, 24 were selected for a 5-month treatment (TG1) while the remaining 16 sites received 3 months of treatment (TG2). Paired t tests and a mixed-model analysis of variance (ANOVA) were used to analyse pre- and post-psychological stress symptoms (PSS) for samples from both groups.
Separately, treatment group 1 (TG1) and treatment group 2's (TG2) paired t test yielded significant results (p < 0.001) for the decrease of PSS. The mixed-model ANOVA found that there were significant differences in total pre- and post-test PSS and a significant difference in PSS means over time.
Results indicated that there was a statistically significant decrease in reported symptoms in both treatment groups pre- to post-intervention and a significant difference in total symptoms over time. However, the findings do not indicate that the longer programming was statistically different compared to the shorter programming. The study presented had gaps in data, largely due to limits in research during the crisis. However, this paper provides a unique case study for challenges that can be faced for project evaluation in emergency settings.
X-ray microscopy is a field that has developed rapidly in recent years. Two different approaches have been used. Zone plates have been employed to produce focussed beams with sizes as low as 0.07 pm for x-ray energies below 1 keV. Images of biological materials and elemental maps for major and minor low Z have been produced using above and below absorption edge differences. At higher energies collimators and focussing mirrors have been used to make small diameter beams for excitation of characteristic K— or L-x rays of all elements in the periodic
Health and social care face growing and conflicting pressures: mounting complex needs of an ageing population, restricted funding and a workforce recruitment and retention crisis. In response, in the UK the NHS Long Term Plan promises increased investment and an emphasis on better ‘integrated’ care. We describe key aspects of integration that need addressing.
Declaration of interest
D.K.T. and S.S.S. are on the editorial board of the British Journal of Psychiatry and executives of the Academic Faculty at the Royal College of Psychiatrists. A.J.B.J., H.P. and Z.M. have roles at the Royal College of Psychiatrists that include evaluation of integrated care systems. A.J.B.J. is married to Dr Sarah Wollaston, Member of Parliament for Totnes and Chair of the Health Select Committee.
Adolescence is a critical time point in the lifecourse. LifeLab is an educational intervention engaging adolescents in understanding Developmental Origins of Health and Disease (DOHaD) concepts and the impact of the early life environment on future health, benefitting both their long-term health and that of the next generation. We aimed to assess whether engaging adolescents with DOHaD concepts improves scientific literacy and whether engagement alone improves health behaviours.
Six schools were randomized, three to intervention and three to control. Outcome measures were changed in knowledge, and intended and actual behaviour in relation to diet and lifestyle. A total of 333 students completed baseline and follow-up questionnaires. At 12 months, intervention students showed greater understanding of DOHaD concepts. No sustained changes in behaviours were identified.
Adolescents’ engagement with DOHaD concepts can be improved and maintained over 12 months. Such engagement does not itself translate into behaviour change. The intervention has consequently been revised to include additional components beyond engagement alone.
Herbicide resistance is ‘wicked’ in nature; therefore, results of the many educational efforts to encourage diversification of weed control practices in the United States have been mixed. It is clear that we do not sufficiently understand the totality of the grassroots obstacles, concerns, challenges, and specific solutions needed for varied crop production systems. Weed management issues and solutions vary with such variables as management styles, regions, cropping systems, and available or affordable technologies. Therefore, to help the weed science community better understand the needs and ideas of those directly dealing with herbicide resistance, seven half-day regional listening sessions were held across the United States between December 2016 and April 2017 with groups of diverse stakeholders on the issues and potential solutions for herbicide resistance management. The major goals of the sessions were to gain an understanding of stakeholders and their goals and concerns related to herbicide resistance management, to become familiar with regional differences, and to identify decision maker needs to address herbicide resistance. The messages shared by listening-session participants could be summarized by six themes: we need new herbicides; there is no need for more regulation; there is a need for more education, especially for others who were not present; diversity is hard; the agricultural economy makes it difficult to make changes; and we are aware of herbicide resistance but are managing it. The authors concluded that more work is needed to bring a community-wide, interdisciplinary approach to understanding the complexity of managing weeds within the context of the whole farm operation and for communicating the need to address herbicide resistance.
Seven half-day regional listening sessions were held between December 2016 and April 2017 with groups of diverse stakeholders on the issues and potential solutions for herbicide-resistance management. The objective of the listening sessions was to connect with stakeholders and hear their challenges and recommendations for addressing herbicide resistance. The coordinating team hired Strategic Conservation Solutions, LLC, to facilitate all the sessions. They and the coordinating team used in-person meetings, teleconferences, and email to communicate and coordinate the activities leading up to each regional listening session. The agenda was the same across all sessions and included small-group discussions followed by reporting to the full group for discussion. The planning process was the same across all the sessions, although the selection of venue, time of day, and stakeholder participants differed to accommodate the differences among regions. The listening-session format required a great deal of work and flexibility on the part of the coordinating team and regional coordinators. Overall, the participant evaluations from the sessions were positive, with participants expressing appreciation that they were asked for their thoughts on the subject of herbicide resistance. This paper details the methods and processes used to conduct these regional listening sessions and provides an assessment of the strengths and limitations of those processes.
To examine perspectives on food access among low-income families participating in a cost-offset community-supported agriculture (CO-CSA) programme.
Farm Fresh Foods for Healthy Kids (F3HK) is a multicentre randomized intervention trial assessing the effect of CO-CSA on dietary intake and quality among children from low-income families. Focus groups were conducted at the end of the first CO-CSA season. Participants were interviewed about programme experiences, framed by five dimensions of food access: availability, accessibility, affordability, acceptability and accommodation. Transcribed data were coded on these dimensions plus emergent themes.
Nine communities in the US states of New York, North Carolina, Washington and Vermont.
Fifty-three F3HK adults with children.
CSA models were structured by partner farms. Produce quantity was abundant; however, availability was enhanced for participants who were able to select their own produce items. Flexible CSA pick-up times and locations made produce pick-up more accessible. Despite being affordable to most, payment timing was a barrier for some. Unfamiliar foods and quick spoilage hindered acceptability through challenging meal planning, despite accommodations that included preparation advice.
Although CO-CSA may facilitate increased access to fruits and vegetables for low-income families, perceptions of positive diet change may be limited by the ability to incorporate share pick-up into regular travel patterns and meal planning. Food waste concerns may be particularly acute for families with constrained resources. Future research should examine whether CO-CSA with flexible logistics and produce self-selection are sustainable for low-income families and CSA farms.
In September 2015, an outbreak of Escherichia coli Phage Type 32 with an indistinguishable multi locus variable number tandem repeat analysis profile was identified in Scotland. Twelve cases were identified; nine primary cases, two secondary and one asymptomatic case. Extensive food history investigations identified venison products containing wild venison produced by a single food business operator as the most likely source of the outbreak. Of the nine primary cases, eight had consumed venison products, and one case had not eaten venison themselves but had handled and cooked raw venison in the household. This was the first reported outbreak of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) linked to venison products in the UK, and was also notable due to the implicated products being commercially produced and widely distributed. In contrast, previous venison outbreaks reported from other countries have tended to be smaller and related to individually prepared carcases. The outbreak has highlighted some important knowledge gaps in relation to STEC in venison that are currently been investigated via a number of research studies.
The study objective was to determine the prevalence of Staphylococcus aureus colonisation in the nares and oropharynx of healthy persons and identify any risk factors associated with such S. aureus colonisation. In total 263 participants (177 adults and 86 minors) comprising 95 families were enrolled in a year-long prospective cohort study from one urban and one rural county in eastern Iowa, USA, through local newspaper advertisements and email lists and through the Keokuk Rural Health Study. Potential risk factors including demographic factors, medical history, farming and healthcare exposure were assessed. Among the participants, 25.4% of adults and 36.1% minors carried S. aureus in their nares and 37.9% of adults carried it in their oropharynx. The overall prevalence was 44.1% among adults and 36.1% for minors. Having at least one positive environmental site for S. aureus in the family home was associated with colonisation (prevalence ratio: 1.34, 95% CI: 1.07–1.66). The sensitivity of the oropharyngeal cultures was greater than that of the nares cultures (86.1% compared with 58.2%, respectively). In conclusion, the nares and oropharynx are both important colonisation sites for healthy community members and the presence of S. aureus in the home environment is associated with an increased probability of colonisation.
We evaluated the spatial heterogeneity of historical carbon accumulation rates in a forested, ombrotrophic bog in Minnesota to aid understanding of responses to an ongoing decade-long warming manipulation. Eighteen peat cores indicated that the bog has been accumulating carbon for over 11,000 years, to yield 176±40 kg C m−2 to 225±58 cm of peat depth. Estimated peat basal ages ranged from 5100 to 11,100 cal BP. The long-term apparent rate of carbon accumulation over the entire peat profile was 22±2 kg C m−2 yr−1. Plot location within the study area did not affect carbon accumulation rates, but estimated basal ages were younger in profiles from plots closer to the bog lagg and farther from the bog outlet. In addition, carbon accumulation varied considerably over time. Early Holocene net carbon accumulation rates were 30±6 g C m−2 yr−1. Around 3300 calendar BP, net carbon accumulation rates dropped to 15±8 g C m−2 yr−1 until the last century when net accumulation rates increased again to 74±57 g C m−2 yr−1. During this period of low accumulation, regional droughts may have lowered the water table, allowing for enhanced aerobic decomposition and making the bog more susceptible to fire. These results suggest that experimental warming treatments, as well as a future warmer climate may reduce net carbon accumulation in peat in this and other southern boreal peatlands. Furthermore, our we caution against historical interpretations extrapolated from one or a few peat cores.
Objectives: Rates of cognitive, academic and behavioral comorbidities are elevated in children with epilepsy. The contribution of environmental and genetic influences to comorbidity risk is not fully understood. This study investigated children with epilepsy, their unaffected siblings, and controls to determine the presence and extent of risk associated with family relatedness across a range of epilepsy comorbidities. Methods: Participants were 346 children (8–18 years), n=180 with recent-onset epilepsy, their unaffected siblings (n=67), and healthy first-degree cousin controls (n=99). Assessments included: (1) Child Behavior Checklist/6-18 (CBCL), (2) Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF), (3) history of education and academic services, and (4) lifetime attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) diagnosis. Analyses consisted of linear mixed effect models for continuous variables, and logistic mixed models for binary variables. Results: Differences were detected between the three groups of children across all measures (p<.001). For ADHD, academic problems, and executive dysfunction, children with epilepsy exhibited significantly more problems than unaffected siblings and controls; siblings and controls did not differ statistically significantly from each other. For social competence, children with epilepsy and their unaffected siblings displayed more abnormality compared with controls, with no statistically significant difference between children with epilepsy and unaffected siblings. For behavioral problems, children with epilepsy had more abnormality than siblings and controls, but unaffected siblings also exhibited more abnormalities than controls. Conclusions: The contribution of epilepsy and family relatedness varies across specific neurobehavioral comorbidities. Family relatedness was not significantly associated with rates of ADHD, academic problems and executive dysfunction, but was associated with competence and behavioral problems. (JINS, 2018, 24, 1–9)
Erect veldtgrass (Ehrharta erecta Lam.) is an invasive grass actively spreading in California that is capable of invading multiple habitats. Our objective is to contribute to a better understanding of the ecology, impacts, and potential for control of E. erecta in order to guide management practices. In a mixed-evergreen forest in Santa Cruz County, we measured impacts of E. erecta on native plant species richness and abundance in an observational comparison across 11 sites. Strikingly, we measured nearly four times greater total vegetation cover in plots invaded by E. erecta. However, native plants were not significantly less abundant in invaded plots than in reference plots, and native cover was not significantly predicted by E. erecta cover within invaded plots. We did, however, find evidence of change in community composition in response to E. erecta abundance. Our findings demonstrate that native species can persist in the presence of E. erecta, although the long-term impacts on populations of the perennial plants that dominate this forest understory are still unknown.
We also compared the effectiveness of mechanical (hand pulling with volunteers) and chemical (glyphosate) management methods. Twenty-two months following management treatments, we found substantial reductions in E. erecta using both mechanical and herbicide treatments, but herbicide application also produced greater reductions in native species cover and species richness. Transplanting native yerba buena [Clinopodium douglasii (Benth.) Kuntze] into management plots following treatment did not slow regrowth of E. erecta. It did, however, increase total native plant percent cover in herbicide and pull treatments, although largely by increasing C. douglasii cover. Effective management is possible using either manual or chemical removal methods; the optimal method may depend on the availability of manual labor and the sensitivity of the habitat to non-target effects on native plants.
This study aims to investigate the climate–malaria associations in nine cities selected from malaria high-risk areas in China. Daily reports of malaria cases in Anhui, Henan, and Yunnan Provinces for 2005–2012 were obtained from the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Generalized estimating equation models were used to quantify the city-specific climate–malaria associations. Multivariate random-effects meta-regression analyses were used to pool the city-specific effects. An inverted-U-shaped curve relationship was observed between temperatures, average relative humidity, and malaria. A 1 °C increase of maximum temperature (Tmax) resulted in 6·7% (95% CI 4·6–8·8%) to 15·8% (95% CI 14·1–17·4%) increase of malaria, with corresponding lags ranging from 7 to 45 days. For minimum temperature (Tmin), the effect estimates peaked at lag 0 to 40 days, ranging from 5·3% (95% CI 4·4–6·2%) to 17·9% (95% CI 15·6–20·1%). Malaria is more sensitive to Tmin in cool climates and Tmax in warm climates. The duration of lag effect in a cool climate zone is longer than that in a warm climate zone. Lagged effects did not vanish after an epidemic season but waned gradually in the following 2–3 warm seasons. A warming climate may potentially increase the risk of malaria resurgence in China.
While livestock sector is the back-bone of Ethiopian economy, production levels are low due to a variety of causes. It is characterized by low milk production, poor growth rates, extended calving or lambing intervals and a relatively late age at maturity. The major constrain for this is seasonality of feed quality and poor availability during the dry season, with nitrogen supply especially limiting. However legume forages such as cowpea offer the possibility to enhance dietary N levels and improve livestock production (Abule et al., 1995). With its quick growth, drought resistance and rapid ground cover cowpea has become an essential component of sustainable subsistence agriculture in marginal lands and drier regions of the tropics. This study was conducted to examine the ability of cowpea forages, offered as a supplement to low quality maize stover, to enhance intake and production performance in growing Ethiopian highland sheep.
The last few years have seen a growing interest in the urbanism of the Greek and Roman world. This has led to a consensus of sorts about some of its vital statistics, such as the sizes of the populations of the most important settlements and the size of the overall urban population, the urbanization rate (i.e., the share of individuals that lived in urban, rather than rural, contexts), and the total population. A good example comes from W. Scheidel in the Cambridge economic history of the Greco-Roman world. According to him, it is likely that c.1.5 million people lived in the 5 largest cities of the Greco-Roman world by the 2nd c. A.D. These included Rome, which is usually agreed to have had a population of about 1 million; Alexandria, which might have had c.500,000; Antioch, which could have had at least 150,000; and Carthage and Ephesus (Scheidel does not give explicit figures for those).
Radio-glaciological parameters from the Moore’s Bay region of the Ross Ice Shelf, Antarctica, have been measured. The thickness of the ice shelf in Moore’s Bay was measured from reflection times of radio-frequency pulses propagating vertically through the shelf and reflecting from the ocean, and is found to be 576 ± 8 m. Introducing a baseline of 543 ± 7m between radio transmitter and receiver allowed the computation of the basal reflection coefficient, R, separately from englacial loss. The depth-averaged attenuation length of the ice column, 〈L〉 is shown to depend linearly on frequency. The best fit (95% confidence level) is 〈L(ν)〉= (460±20) − (180±40)ν m (20 dB km−1), for the frequencies ν = [0.100–0.850] GHz, assuming no reflection loss. The mean electric-field reflection coefficient is (1.7 dB reflection loss) across [0.100–0.850] GHz, and is used to correct the attenuation length. Finally, the reflected power rotated into the orthogonal antenna polarization is <5% below 0.400 GHz, compatible with air propagation. The results imply that Moore’s Bay serves as an appropriate medium for the ARIANNA high-energy neutrino detector.
Mycobacterium marinum, a bacterium found in freshwater and saltwater, can infect persons with direct exposure to fish or aquariums. During December 2013, the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene learned of four suspected or confirmed M. marinum skin or soft tissue infections (SSTIs) among persons who purchased whole fish from Chinese markets. Ninety-eight case-patients with non-tuberculous mycobacteria (NTM) SSTIs were identified with onset June 2013–March 2014. Of these, 77 (79%) were female. The median age was 62 years (range 30–91). Whole genome sequencing of clinical isolates revealed two main clusters and marked genetic diversity. Environmental samples from distributors yielded NTM though not M. marinum. We compared 56 case-patients with 185 control subjects who shopped in Chinese markets, frequency-matched by age group and sex. Risk factors for infection included skin injury to the finger or hand (odds ratio [OR]: 15·5; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 6·9–37·3), hand injury while preparing fish or seafood (OR 8·3; 95% CI 3·8–19·1), and purchasing tilapia (OR 3·6; 95% CI 1·1–13·9) or whiting (OR 2·7; 95% CI 1·1–6·6). A definitive environmental outbreak source was not identified.
Placental transport of vitamin D and other nutrients (e.g. amino acids, fats and glucose) to the fetus is sensitive to maternal and fetal nutritional cues. We studied the effect of maternal calorific restriction on fetal vitamin D status and the placental expression of genes for nutrient transport [aromatic T-type amino acid transporter-1 (TAT-1); triglyceride hydrolase/lipoprotein uptake facilitator lipoprotein lipase (LPL)] and vitamin D homeostasis [CYP27B1; vitamin D receptor (VDR)], and their association with markers of fetal cardiovascular function and skeletal muscle growth. Pregnant sheep received 100% total metabolizable energy (ME) requirements (control), 40% total ME requirements peri-implantation [PI40, 1–31 days of gestation (dGA)] or 50% total ME requirements in late gestation (L, 104–127 dGA). Fetal, but not maternal, plasma 25-hydroxy-vitamin D (25OHD) concentration was lower in PI40 and L maternal undernutrition groups (P<0.01) compared with the control group at 0.86 gestation. PI40 group placental CYP27B1 messenger RNA (mRNA) levels were increased (P<0.05) compared with the control group. Across all groups, higher fetal plasma 25OHD concentration was associated with higher skeletal muscle myofibre and capillary density (P<0.05). In the placenta, higher VDR mRNA levels were associated with higher TAT-1 (P<0.05) and LPL (P<0.01) mRNA levels. In the PI40 maternal undernutrition group only, reduced fetal plasma 25OHD concentration may be mediated in part by altered placental CYP27B1. The association between placental mRNA levels of VDR and nutrient transport genes suggests a way in which the placenta may integrate nutritional cues in the face of maternal dietary challenges and alter fetal physiology.
Two examples of anionic complexes having vapochromic behavior are investigated: [K(H2O)][Pt(ppy)(CN)2] “Pt(ppy)” and [K(H2O)][Pt(bzq)(CN)2] “Pt(bzq)”, where ppy = 2-phenylpyridinate and bzq = 7,8-benzoquinolate. These monohydrate-potassium salts exhibit a change in color from purple to yellow [Pt(ppy)] and from red to yellow [Pt(bzq)] upon heating to 110 °C, and they transform back into the original color upon absorption of water molecules from the environment. Available only in the form of polycrystalline samples, no structural information on such compounds is accessible, due to highly overlapping peaks in powder diffraction profiles. We use in situ Pair Distribution Function measurements on powder samples to investigate the dynamics of the structural changes induced by temperature variations. By means of a multivariate approach, we were able to extract dynamic structural information from collected profiles without using prior knowledge on the static crystal structure of the compounds. The critical temperature and the characteristics of the vapochromic transition have been identified, as well as the main structural changes causing it.
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.