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The objectives of this study were to analyse the differences in the genetic determination of functional longevity in five Spanish lines of rabbits and to check how different systematic factors might affect this genetic determination. Four of the lines were maternal (lines A, V, H and LP), these lines were established selecting base generation animals according to different criteria, but in the subsequent generations all of them were selected for litter size at weaning. The other is the paternal line R, this line was constituted by selecting animals with an outstanding daily growth rate. The trait analysed, length of productive life, was the time in days between the date of the first positive pregnancy test and the date of culling or death of a doe. Four models extended from the Cox proportional hazard model were used to analyse data of each line separately and jointly. The complete model (Model 1) included the fixed effect of year-season (YS) combination, positive palpation order (OPP), that is, reproductive cycle, physiological status of the doe (PS) at service and number of kits born alive (NBA) in each kindling as time-dependent factors. The inbreeding coefficient was fitted as a continuous covariate and the animal’s additive genetic effect was also fitted to the model (Model 1). The other models were identical to Model 1 but excluding OPP (Model 2) or PS (Model 3) or NBA (Model 4), which were explored to assess the consequence on additive variance estimates of not correcting for these animal-dependent factors. Estimated effective heritabilities of longevity were 0.07 ± 0.03, 0.03 ± 0.02, 0.14 ± 0.09, 0.05 ± 0.04, 0.02 ± 0.01 and 0.04 ± 0.01 for lines A, V, H, LP, R and for the merged data set, respectively. Removing the PS from the model led to an increase in the estimated additive genetic variance in all lines (0.17 ± 0.05, 0.05 ± 0.03, 0.29 ± 0.19, 0.29 ± 0.20, 0.07 ± 0.04 and 0.05 ± 0.02 for lines A, V, H, LP, R and the merged data set, respectively). The highest hazard of death and/or culling was observed during the first two parities and decreased as the order of parity progressed. Does non-pregnant-non-lactating had the highest risk of death or culling. The does that had zero kits born alive incurred the highest risk, and this risk decreased as the NBA increased. In conclusion, the consideration of longevity as selection criterion for the studied rabbit lines is not recommended.
Studies suggest that alcohol consumption and alcohol use disorders have distinct genetic backgrounds.
We examined whether polygenic risk scores (PRS) for consumption and problem subscales of the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT-C, AUDIT-P) in the UK Biobank (UKB; N = 121 630) correlate with alcohol outcomes in four independent samples: an ascertained cohort, the Collaborative Study on the Genetics of Alcoholism (COGA; N = 6850), and population-based cohorts: Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC; N = 5911), Generation Scotland (GS; N = 17 461), and an independent subset of UKB (N = 245 947). Regression models and survival analyses tested whether the PRS were associated with the alcohol-related outcomes.
In COGA, AUDIT-P PRS was associated with alcohol dependence, AUD symptom count, maximum drinks (R2 = 0.47–0.68%, p = 2.0 × 10−8–1.0 × 10−10), and increased likelihood of onset of alcohol dependence (hazard ratio = 1.15, p = 4.7 × 10−8); AUDIT-C PRS was not an independent predictor of any phenotype. In ALSPAC, the AUDIT-C PRS was associated with alcohol dependence (R2 = 0.96%, p = 4.8 × 10−6). In GS, AUDIT-C PRS was a better predictor of weekly alcohol use (R2 = 0.27%, p = 5.5 × 10−11), while AUDIT-P PRS was more associated with problem drinking (R2 = 0.40%, p = 9.0 × 10−7). Lastly, AUDIT-P PRS was associated with ICD-based alcohol-related disorders in the UKB subset (R2 = 0.18%, p < 2.0 × 10−16).
AUDIT-P PRS was associated with a range of alcohol-related phenotypes across population-based and ascertained cohorts, while AUDIT-C PRS showed less utility in the ascertained cohort. We show that AUDIT-P is genetically correlated with both use and misuse and demonstrate the influence of ascertainment schemes on PRS analyses.
As a result of the genetic selection for prolificacy and the improvements in the environment and farms management, litter size has increased in the last few years so that energy requirements of the lactating sow are greater. In addition, selection for feed efficiency of growing pigs is also conducted in maternal lines, and this has led to a decrease in appetite and feed intake that is extended to the lactation period, so the females are not able to obtain the necessary energy and nutrients for milk production and they mobilize their energetic reserves. When this mobilization is excessive, reproductive and health problems occur which ends up in an early sow culling. In this context, it has been suggested to improve feed efficiency at lactation through genetic selection. The aim of this study is to know, in a Duroc population, the genetic determinism of sow feed efficiency during lactation and traits involved in its definition, as well as genetic and environmental associations between them. The studied traits are daily lactation feed intake (dLFI), daily sow weight balance (dSWB), backfat thickness balance (BFTB), daily litter weight gain (dLWG), sow residual feed intake (RFI) and sow restricted residual feed intake (RRFI) during lactation. Data corresponded to 851 parities from 581 Duroc sows. A Bayesian analysis was performed using Gibbs sampling. A four-trait repeatability animal model was implemented including the systematic factors of batch and parity order, the standardized covariates of sow weight (SWf) and litter weight (LWs) at farrowing for all traits and lactation length for BFTB. The posterior mean (posterior SD) of heritabilities were: 0.09 (0.03) for dLFI, 0.37 (0.07) for dSWB, 0.09 (0.03) for BFTB, 0.22 (0.05) for dLWG, 0.04 (0.02) for RFI and null for RRFI. The genetic correlation between dLFI and dSWB was high and positive (0.74 (0.11)) and null between dLFI and BFTB. Genetic correlation was favourable between RFI and dLFI and BFTB (0.71 (0.16) and −0.69 (0.18)), respectively. The other genetic correlations were not statistically different from zero. The phenotypic correlations were low and positive between dLFI and dSWB (0.27 (0.03), dSWB and BFTB (0.25 (0.04)), and between dLFI and dLWG (0.16 (0.03)). Therefore, in the population under study, the improvement of the lactation feed efficiency would be possible either using RFI, which would not have unfavourable correlated effects, or through an index including its component traits.
Social cognition has been associated with functional outcome in patients with first episode psychosis (FEP). Social cognition has also been associated with neurocognition and cognitive reserve. Although cognitive reserve, neurocognitive functioning, social cognition, and functional outcome are related, the direction of their associations is not clear. Therefore, the main aim of this study was to analyze the influence of social cognition as a mediator between cognitive reserve and cognitive domains on functioning in FEP both at baseline and at 2 years.
The sample of the study was composed of 282 FEP patients followed up for 2 years. To analyze whether social cognition mediates the influence of cognitive reserve and cognitive domains on functioning, a path analysis was performed. The statistical significance of any mediation effects was evaluated by bootstrap analysis.
At baseline, as neither cognitive reserve nor the cognitive domains studied were related to functioning, the conditions for mediation were not satisfied. Nevertheless, at 2 years of follow-up, social cognition acted as a mediator between cognitive reserve and functioning. Likewise, social cognition was a mediator between verbal memory and functional outcome. The results of the bootstrap analysis confirmed these significant mediations (95% bootstrapped CI (−10.215 to −0.337) and (−4.731 to −0.605) respectively).
Cognitive reserve and neurocognition are related to functioning, and social cognition mediates in this relationship.
Performance and feeding behaviour traits in growing pigs could be affected by social interaction effects when animals are raised in group. So, properly knowing the genetic correlations between direct and social interaction effects among performance and feeding behaviour traits could improve the accuracy of the genetic evaluations. Our aim was to explore the role of feeding behaviour traits (FBT) and indirect genetic effects (IGEs) in the genetic evaluations of growing pigs. Thus, genetic parameters were estimated for production traits (PT): average daily gain, average daily feed consumption, feed conversion ratio and backfat thickness; as well as for FBT: average daily feeding rate, average daily feeding frequency, average daily occupation time and average daily time between consecutive visits. Traits were recorded in 1144 Duroc pigs during the fattening period. Two bivariate models were fitted: classic animal model and an animal model fitting IGE. Estimations were done following Bayesian procedures. Heritability estimates obtained with classic animal model for all studied traits were medium-high. The additional heritable variation captured by IGE supposed that the ratios of total genetic variance to phenotypic variance (T2) were higher than the heritability estimates obtained with the classic model, except for occupation time trait, when a lower value (0.20 ± 0.19) was estimated. This is due to a high and negative correlation between IGE and direct genetic effects (DGEs) of this particular trait (−0.78 ± 0.27). Results from classic animal model do not evidence a clear role of FBT to improve the accuracy of breeding value predictions for PT; only average daily feeding rate seems to show a positive correlation (around 0.50 to 0.60) with average daily gain, average daily feed consumption and backfat thickness. However, when IGE model was fitted, the number of estimates of genetic correlations between FBT and PT showing a relevant magnitude increased, generally for the correlations between IGE of FBT and DGE of PT; or particularly for the correlations between IGE of average daily feeding frequency, and the IGE of all the PT, except average daily gain. Thus, in evaluations using the animal model with IGE fitted, the inclusion of FBT could aid the improvement of the accuracy of breeding value predictions for PT. This is a consequence of the improved genetic relationships between traits that can be fitted when considering such models.
The Murcia Twin Registry (MTR) is the only population-based registry in Spain. Created in 2006, the registry has been growing more than a decade to become one of the references for twin research in the Mediterranean region. The MTR database currently comprises 3545 adult participants born between 1940 and 1977. It also holds a recently launched satellite registry of university students (N = 204). Along five waves of data collection, the registry has gathered questionnaire and anthropometric data, as well as biological samples. The MTR keeps its main research focus on health and health-related behaviors from a public health perspective. This includes lifestyle, health promotion, quality of life or environmental conditions. Future short-term development points to the expansion of the biobank and the continuation of the collection of longitudinal data.
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.
We have observed the G23 field of the Galaxy AndMass Assembly (GAMA) survey using the Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder (ASKAP) in its commissioning phase to validate the performance of the telescope and to characterise the detected galaxy populations. This observation covers ~48 deg2 with synthesised beam of 32.7 arcsec by 17.8 arcsec at 936MHz, and ~39 deg2 with synthesised beam of 15.8 arcsec by 12.0 arcsec at 1320MHz. At both frequencies, the root-mean-square (r.m.s.) noise is ~0.1 mJy/beam. We combine these radio observations with the GAMA galaxy data, which includes spectroscopy of galaxies that are i-band selected with a magnitude limit of 19.2. Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) infrared (IR) photometry is used to determine which galaxies host an active galactic nucleus (AGN). In properties including source counts, mass distributions, and IR versus radio luminosity relation, the ASKAP-detected radio sources behave as expected. Radio galaxies have higher stellar mass and luminosity in IR, optical, and UV than other galaxies. We apply optical and IR AGN diagnostics and find that they disagree for ~30% of the galaxies in our sample. We suggest possible causes for the disagreement. Some cases can be explained by optical extinction of the AGN, but for more than half of the cases we do not find a clear explanation. Radio sources aremore likely (~6%) to have an AGN than radio quiet galaxies (~1%), but the majority of AGN are not detected in radio at this sensitivity.
On 16 March 2018, a nursing home notified a possible acute gastroenteritis outbreak that affected 11 people. Descriptive and case–control studies and analysis of clinical and environmental samples were carried out to determine the characteristics of the outbreak, its aetiology, the transmission mechanism and the causal food. The extent of the outbreak in and outside the nursing home was determined and the staff factors influencing propagation were studied by multivariate analysis. A turkey dinner on March 14 was associated with the outbreak (OR 4.22, 95% CI 1.11–16.01). Norovirus genogroups I and II were identified in stool samples. The attack rates in residents, staff and household contacts of staff were 23.49%, 46.22% and 22.87%, respectively. Care assistants and cleaning staff were the staff most frequently affected. Cohabitation with an affected care assistant was the most important factor in the occurrence of cases in the home (adjusted OR 6.37, 95% CI 1.13–36.02). Our results show that staff in close contact with residents and their household contacts had a higher risk of infection during the norovirus outbreak.
We investigated the distribution of comorbidities among adult tuberculosis (TB) patients in Chiapas, the poorest Mexican state, with a high presence of indigenous population, and a corridor for migrants from Latin America. Secondary analysis on 5508 new adult TB patients diagnosed between 2010 and 2014 revealed that the most prevalent comorbidities were diabetes mellitus (DM; 19.1%) and undernutrition (14.4%). The prevalence of DM in these TB patients was significantly higher among middle aged (41–64 years) compared with older adults (⩾65 years) (38.6% vs. 23.2%; P < 0.0001). The prevalence of undernutrition was lower among those with DM, and higher in communities with high indigenous presence. Immigrants only comprised 2% of all TB cases, but were more likely to have unfavourable TB treatment outcomes (treatment failure, death and default) when compared with those born in Chiapas (29.5% vs. 11.1%; P < 0.05). Unfavourable TB outcomes were also more prevalent among the TB patients with undernutrition, HIV or older age, but not DM (P < 0.05). Our study in Chiapas illustrates the challenges of other regions worldwide where social (e.g. indigenous origin, poverty, migration) and host factors (DM, undernutrition, HIV, older age) are associated with TB. Further understanding of these critical factors will guide local policy makers and health providers to improve TB management.
Differences in forage nutritive value between morning and afternoon are related to patterns of dehydration and carbohydrate accumulation throughout the day. In this way, management strategies that maximize grazing time during the afternoon could increase forage nutritive value and consequently nutrient intake. The aim of the current experiment was to evaluate the effect of the time of day (06.00 h [designated AM] or 15.00 h [PM]) that cattle are moved to a new paddock on forage nutritive value, grazing behaviour and animal performance of beef cattle on rotationally stocked Marandu palisadegrass (Brachiaria brizantha cv. Marandu Syn. Urochloa brizantha cv. Marandu) pastures. A spring and summer study was conducted in Pirassununga, SP, Brazil from October 2012 to March 2013 (182 days). Treatments were distributed in a randomized complete block design with three replications. Herbage mass, morphological composition, herbage allowance and stocking rates were similar between treatments during spring and summer. Moving animals to a new paddock, regardless of the time of day – 06.00 h (AM) or 15.00 h (PM) – stimulated grazing, modifying the distribution of meals throughout the day. However, compensatory mechanisms among grazing time, bite rate and forage nutritive value throughout the day operated in order to generate similar performance between animals offered a new paddock in the morning or in the afternoon.
To investigate whether amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI) identified with visual memory tests conveys an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease (risk-AD) and if the risk-AD differs from that associated with aMCI based on verbal memory tests.
4,771 participants aged 70.76 (SD = 6.74, 45.4% females) from five community-based studies, each a member of the international COSMIC consortium and from a different country, were classified as having normal cognition (NC) or one of visual, verbal, or combined (visual and verbal) aMCI using international criteria and followed for an average of 2.48 years. Hazard ratios (HR) and individual patient data (IPD) meta-analysis analyzed the risk-AD with age, sex, education, single/multiple domain aMCI, and Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) scores as covariates.
All aMCI groups (n = 760) had a greater risk-AD than NC (n = 4,011; HR range = 3.66 – 9.25). The risk-AD was not different between visual (n = 208, 17 converters) and verbal aMCI (n = 449, 29 converters, HR = 1.70, 95%CI: 0.88, 3.27, p = 0.111). Combined aMCI (n = 103, 12 converters, HR = 2.34, 95%CI: 1.13, 4.84, p = 0.023) had a higher risk-AD than verbal aMCI. Age and MMSE scores were related to the risk-AD. The IPD meta-analyses replicated these results, though with slightly lower HR estimates (HR range = 3.68, 7.43) for aMCI vs. NC.
Although verbal aMCI was most common, a significant proportion of participants had visual-only or combined visual and verbal aMCI. Compared with verbal aMCI, the risk-AD was the same for visual aMCI and higher for combined aMCI. Our results highlight the importance of including both verbal and visual memory tests in neuropsychological assessments to more reliably identify aMCI.
The objective was to compare the performance of the updated Charlson comorbidity index (uCCI) and classical CCI (cCCI) in predicting 30-day mortality in patients with Staphylococcus aureus bacteraemia (SAB). All cases of SAB in patients aged ⩾14 years identified at the Microbiology Unit were included prospectively and followed. Comorbidity was evaluated using the cCCI and uCCI. Relevant variables associated with SAB-related mortality, along with cCCI or uCCI scores, were entered into multivariate logistic regression models. Global model fit, model calibration and predictive validity of each model were evaluated and compared. In total, 257 episodes of SAB in 239 patients were included (mean age 74 years; 65% were male). The mean cCCI and uCCI scores were 3.6 (standard deviation, 2.4) and 2.9 (2.3), respectively; 161 (63%) cases had cCCI score ⩾3 and 89 (35%) cases had uCCI score ⩾4. Sixty-five (25%) patients died within 30 days. The cCCI score was not related to mortality in any model, but uCCI score ⩾4 was an independent factor of 30-day mortality (odds ratio, 1.98; 95% confidence interval, 1.05–3.74). The uCCI is a more up-to-date, refined and parsimonious prognostic mortality score than the cCCI; it may thus serve better than the latter in the identification of patients with SAB with worse prognoses.