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Little is known about who would benefit from Internet-based personalised nutrition (PN) interventions. This study aimed to evaluate the characteristics of participants who achieved greatest improvements (i.e. benefit) in diet, adiposity and biomarkers following an Internet-based PN intervention. Adults (n 1607) from seven European countries were recruited into a 6-month, randomised controlled trial (Food4Me) and randomised to receive conventional dietary advice (control) or PN advice. Information on dietary intake, adiposity, physical activity (PA), blood biomarkers and participant characteristics was collected at baseline and month 6. Benefit from the intervention was defined as ≥5 % change in the primary outcome (Healthy Eating Index) and secondary outcomes (waist circumference and BMI, PA, sedentary time and plasma concentrations of cholesterol, carotenoids and omega-3 index) at month 6. For our primary outcome, benefit from the intervention was greater in older participants, women and participants with lower HEI scores at baseline. Benefit was greater for individuals reporting greater self-efficacy for ‘sticking to healthful foods’ and who ‘felt weird if [they] didn’t eat healthily’. Participants benefited more if they reported wanting to improve their health and well-being. The characteristics of individuals benefiting did not differ by other demographic, health-related, anthropometric or genotypic characteristics. Findings were similar for secondary outcomes. These findings have implications for the design of more effective future PN intervention studies and for tailored nutritional advice in public health and clinical settings.
Adoption of better technologies is a crucial way for developing countries to close productivity gaps with leading economies. However, the possibility of growing through technological adoption depends decisively on the country’s absorptive capacity. We build a theoretical model of technology adoption that focuses on four factors that shape the countries’ technological absorptive capacity, namely: (i) years of education; (ii) quality of the educational system; (iii) barriers that impede the entry and exit of firms; and (iv) the institutions that enhance or impede the diffusion of new technologies. We calibrate the model for a sample of 86 economies. The USA is our benchmark leading economy. We disentangle the relative weight of each development factor in explaining per capita income differences and study patterns in relationships between the type of development barrier and the level of development. Our results show that in relative terms, years of education and education system quality along with high barriers to opening new firms are the main impediments that middle- to high-income economies face in closing the gap with the USA. Education as a whole (quality plus years of education) explains 50% of the gap between high-income countries (HICs) and the USA, while the entry costs account for nearly 25% of this gap. A remarkable result is the small effect that individual reforms have on steady-state productivity in low-income countries (LICs). Outside of institutional framework, the remaining three factors are individually responsible for less than 15% of the gap. This result is explained by poor global absorptive capacity that reduces the effect of each factor when implemented individually. In fact, there are significant nonlinearities between development level and the effects of individual reforms, which are due to the strong complementarities between the different development factors.
Sex differences in cognitive functioning have long been recognized in schizophrenia patients and healthy controls (HC). However, few studies have focused on patients with an at-risk mental state (ARMS) for psychosis. Thus, the aim of the present study was to investigate sex differences in neurocognitive performance in ARMS patients compared with HC.
The data analyzed in this study were collected within the multicenter European Gene–Environment Interactions study (11 centers). A total of 343 ARMS patients (158 women) and 67 HC subjects (33 women) were included. All participants completed a comprehensive neurocognitive battery. Linear mixed effects models were used to explore whether sex differences in cognitive functioning were present in the total group (main effect of sex) and whether sex differences were different for HC and ARMS (interaction between sex and group).
Women performed better in social cognition, speed of processing, and verbal learning than men regardless of whether they were ARMS or HC. However, only differences in speed of processing and verbal learning remained significant after correction for multiple testing. Additionally, ARMS patients displayed alterations in attention, current IQ, speed of processing, verbal learning, and working memory compared with HC.
Findings indicate that sex differences in cognitive functioning in ARMS are similar to those seen between healthy men and women. Thus, it appears that sex differences in cognitive performance may not be specific for ARMS, a finding resembling that in patients with schizophrenic psychoses.
To evaluate the efficacy of detergent and friction on removal of traditional biofilm and cyclic-buildup biofilm (CBB) from polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) channels and to evaluate the efficacy of glutaraldehyde to kill residual bacteria after cleaning.
PTFE channels were exposed to artificial test soil containing 108 CFU/mL of Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Enterococcus faecalis, followed by full cleaning and high-level disinfection (HLD) for five repeated rounds to establish CBB. For traditional biofilm, the HLD step was omitted. Cleaning with enzymatic and alkaline detergents, bristle brush, and Pull Thru channel cleaner were compared to a water flush only. Carbohydrate, protein, viable count, adenosine triphosphate (ATP) levels were analyzed and atomic force microscopy (AFM) was performed.
In the absence of friction, cleaning of traditional biofilm and CBB was not effective compared to the positive control (Dunn-Bonferroni tests; P > .05) regardless of the detergent used. ATP, protein, and carbohydrate analyses were unable to detect traditional biofilm or CBB. The AFM analysis showed that fixation resulted in CBB being smoother and more compact than traditional biofilm.
Friction during the cleaning process was a critical parameter regardless of the detergent used for removal of either traditional biofilm or CBB. Glutaraldehyde effectively killed the remaining microorganisms regardless of the cleaning method used.
Consanguineous marriages potentially play an important role in the transmission of β-thalassaemia in many communities. This study aimed to determine the rate and socio-demographic associations of consanguineous marriages and to assess the influence on the prevalence of β-thalassaemia in Sri Lanka. Three marriage registrars from each district of Sri Lanka were randomly selected to prospectively collect data on all couples who registered their marriage during a 6-month period starting 1st July 2009. Separately, the parents of patients with β-thalassaemia were interviewed to identify consanguinity. A total of 5255 marriages were recorded from 22 districts. The average age at marriage was 27.3 (±6.1) years for males and 24.1 (±5.7) years for females. A majority (71%) of marriages were ‘love’ marriages, except in the Moor community where 84% were ‘arranged’ marriages. Overall, the national consanguinity rate was 7.4%. It was significantly higher among ethnic Tamils (22.4%) compared with Sinhalese (3.8%) and Moors (3.2%) (p < 0.001). Consanguinity rates were also higher in ‘arranged’ as opposed to ‘love’ marriages (11.7% vs 5.6%, p < 0.001). In patients with β-thalassaemia, the overall consanguinity rate was 14.5%; it was highest among Tamils (44%) and lowest among Sinhalese (12%). Parental consanguinity among patients with β-thalassaemia was double the national average. Although consanguinity is not the major factor in the transmission of the disease in the country, emphasis should be given to this significant practice when conducting β-thalassaemia prevention and awareness campaigns, especially in high-prevalence communities.
To determine if specific dietary patterns are associated with risk of hypertension, type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) and high BMI in four sites in Peru.
We analysed dietary patterns from a cohort of Peruvian adults in four geographical settings using latent class analysis. Associations with prevalence and incidence of hypertension, T2DM and high BMI were assessed using Poisson regression and generalised linear models, adjusted for potential confounders.
Four sites in Peru varying in degree of urbanisation.
Adults aged ≥35 years (n 3280).
We identified four distinct dietary patterns corresponding to different stages of the Peruvian nutrition transition, reflected by the foods frequently consumed in each pattern. Participants consuming the ‘stage 3’ diet, characterised by high proportional consumption of processed foods, animal products and low consumption of vegetables, mostly consumed in the semi-urban setting, showed the highest prevalence of all health outcomes (hypertension 32·1 %; T2DM 10·7 %; high BMI 75·1 %). Those with a more traditional ‘stage 1’ diet characterised by potato and vegetables, mostly consumed in the rural setting, had lower prevalence of hypertension (prevalence ratio; 95 CI: 0·57; 0·43, 0·75), T2DM (0·36; 0·16, 0·86) and high BMI (0·55; 0·48, 0·63) compared with the ‘stage 3’ diet. Incidence of hypertension was highest among individuals consuming the ‘stage 3’ diet (63·75 per 1000 person-years; 95 % CI 52·40, 77·55).
The study found more traditional diets were associated with a lower prevalence of three common chronic diseases, while prevalence of these diseases was higher with a diet high in processed foods and low in vegetables.
We present TreeFrog, a massively parallel halo merger tree builder that is capable comparing different halo catalogues and producing halo merger trees. The code is written in c++11, use the MPI and OpenMP API’s for parallelisation, and includes python tools to read/manipulate the data products produced. The code correlates binding energy sorted particle ID lists between halo catalogues, determining optimal descendant/progenitor matches using multiple snapshots, a merit function that maximises the number of shared particles using pseudo-radial moments, and a scheme for correcting halo merger tree pathologies. Focusing on VELOCIraptor catalogues for this work, we demonstrate how searching multiple snapshots spanning a dynamical time significantly reduces the number of stranded halos, those lacking a descendant or a progenitor, critically correcting poorly resolved halos. We present a new merit function that improves the distinction between primary and secondary progenitors, reducing tree pathologies. We find FOF accretion rates and merger rates show similar mass ratio dependence. The model merger rates from Poole, et al. [2017, 472, 3659] agree with the measured net growth of halos through mergers.
Facial transplantation is emerging as a therapeutic option for self-inflicted gunshot wounds. The self-inflicted nature of this injury raises questions about the appropriate role of self-harm in determining patient eligibility. Potential candidates for facial transplantation undergo extensive psychosocial screening. The presence of a self-inflicted gunshot wound warrants special attention to ensure that a patient is prepared to undergo a demanding procedure that poses significant risk, as well as stringent lifelong management. Herein, we explore the ethics of considering mechanism of injury in the patient selection process, referring to the precedent set forth in solid organ transplantation. We also consider the available evidence regarding outcomes of individuals transplanted for self-inflicted mechanisms of injury in both solid organ and facial transplantation. We conclude that while the presence of a self-inflicted gunshot wound is significant in the overall evaluation of the candidate, it does not on its own warrant exclusion from consideration for a facial transplantation.
Hermaphroditism is thought to be an advantageous strategy common in marine molluscs that exhibit simultaneous, sequential or alternating hermaphroditism. Several species of patellid limpets have previously been shown to be protandrous hermaphrodites. The present study aimed to confirm whether this phenomenon occurs in Patella piperata. Transitional forms of simultaneous protandrous hermaphroditism were found in intermediate size classes of P. piperata, in Madeira (North-eastern Atlantic). Sequential hermaphroditism was confirmed after histological analysis. The overall sex-ratio was biased towards females but approached similar proportions in the larger size classes. Analysis of size at sex change showed that at a shell length of 36 mm 50% of the population probably have changed sex. The results reported confirm the occurrence of sequential hermaphroditism. These findings are of utmost importance to the understanding of the reproductive biology of this species with direct effect on management and conservation of this traditionally harvested limpet.
To determine the association between excess body fat, assessed by skinfold thickness, and the incidence of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) and hypertension (HT).
Data from the ongoing PERU MIGRANT Study were analysed. The outcomes were T2DM and HT, and the exposure was skinfold thickness measured in bicipital, tricipital, subscapular and suprailiac areas. The Durnin–Womersley formula and SIRI equation were used for body fat percentage estimation. Risk ratios and population attributable fractions (PAF) were calculated using Poisson regression.
Rural (Ayacucho) and urban shantytown district (San Juan de Miraflores, Lima) in Peru.
Adults (n 988) aged ≥30 years (rural, rural-to-urban migrants, urban) completed the baseline study. A total of 785 and 690 were included in T2DM and HT incidence analysis, respectively.
At baseline, age mean was 48·0 (sd 12·0) years and 47 % were males. For T2DM, in 7·6 (sd 1·3) years, sixty-one new cases were identified, overall incidence of 1·0 (95 % CI 0·8, 1·3) per 100 person-years. Bicipital and subscapular skinfolds were associated with 2·8-fold and 6·4-fold risk of developing T2DM. On the other hand, in 6·5 (sd 2·5) years, overall incidence of HT was 2·6 (95 % CI 2·2, 3·1) per 100 person-years. Subscapular and overall fat obesity were associated with 2·4- and 2·9-fold risk for developing HT. The PAF for subscapular skinfold was 73·6 and 39·2 % for T2DM and HT, respectively.
We found a strong association between subscapular skinfold thickness and developing T2DM and HT. Skinfold assessment can be a laboratory-free strategy to identify high-risk HT and T2DM cases.
The VISCACHA (VIsible Soar photometry of star Clusters in tApii and Coxi HuguA†) Survey is an ongoing project based on deep and spatially resolved photometric observations of Magellanic Cloud star clusters, collected using the SOuthern Astrophysical Research (SOAR) telescope together with the SOAR Adaptive Module Imager. So far we have used >300h of telescope time to observe ∼150 star clusters, mostly with low mass (M < 104M⊙) on the outskirts of the LMC and SMC. With this high-quality data set, we homogeneously determine physical properties using deep colour-magnitude diagrams (ages, metallicities, reddening, distances, mass, luminosity and mass functions) and structural parameters (radial density profiles, sizes) for these clusters which are used as a proxy to investigate the interplay between the Magellanic Clouds and their evolution. We present the VISCACHA survey and its initial results, based on our first two papers. The project’s long term goals and expected legacy to the community are also addressed.
We present VELOCIraptor, a massively parallel galaxy/(sub)halo finder that is also capable of robustly identifying tidally disrupted objects and separate stellar halos from galaxies. The code is written in C++11, use the Message Passing Interface (MPI) and OpenMP Application Programming Interface (API) for parallelisation, and includes python tools to read/manipulate the data products produced. We demonstrate the power of the VELOCIraptor (sub)halo finder, showing how it can identify subhalos deep within the host that have negligible density contrasts to their parent halo. We find a subhalo mass-radial distance dependence: large subhalos with mass ratios of ≳10−2 are more common in the central regions than smaller subhalos, a result of dynamical friction and low tidal mass loss rates. This dependence is completely absent in (sub)halo finders in common use, which generally search for substructure in configuration space, yet is present in codes that track particles belonging to halos as they fall into other halos, such as hbt+. VELOCIraptor largely reproduces the dependence seen without tracking, finding a similar radial dependence to hbt+ in well-resolved halos from our limited resolution fiducial simulation.
The Roosevelt–Rondon Expedition marmoset Mico marcai was first collected in 1914 and all information on this primate previously came from three skins brought back by this expedition. As a result, M. marcai is categorized as Data Deficient on the IUCN Red List. As the presumed range of M. marcai lies on the path of the advancing arc of deforestation in Brazil, the collection of relevant data to assess the conservation status of this Amazonian species is of some urgency. Here we present the first field data on the distribution and population size of, and threats to, M. marcai, to reassess the species’ conservation status. During 2012–2015 we surveyed the species in the Marmelos–Aripuanã interfluve, and estimated its density using distance sampling. We also used spatial predictive modelling to estimate forest loss within the species range under two deforestation scenarios. We found the marmoset in 13 localities and estimated its extent of occurrence to be 31,073 km2. We estimated the species’ density to be 8.31 individuals/km2 and extrapolated this to estimate a total population of 258,218 individuals (CI 150,705–441,860). Under a business-as-usual deforestation scenario, c. 10,000 km2 of forest, comprising 33% of the species’ range, would be lost in three marmoset generations (c. 18 years), and we, therefore, recommend that M. marcai be categorized as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List based on criterion A3c. Other Amazonian marmosets require similar reassessment as their ranges also fall in the path of the arc of deforestation.
In 2017, dicamba-resistant (DR) soybean was commercially available to farmers in the United States. In August and September of 2017, a survey of 312 farmers from 60 Nebraska soybean-producing counties was conducted during extension field days or online. The objective of this survey was to understand farmers’ adoption and perceptions regarding DR soybean technology in Nebraska. The survey contained 16 questions and was divided in three parts: (1) demographics, (2) dicamba application in DR soybean, and (3) dicamba off-target injury to sensitive soybean cultivars. According to the results, 20% of soybean hectares represented by the survey were planted to DR soybean in 2017, and this number would probably double in 2018. Sixty-five percent of survey respondents own a sprayer and apply their own herbicide programs. More than 90% of respondents who adopted DR soybean technology reported significant improvement in weed control. Nearly 60% of respondents used dicamba alone or glyphosate plus dicamba for POST weed control in DR soybean; the remaining 40% added an additional herbicide with an alternative site of action (SOA) to the POST application. All survey respondents used one of the approved dicamba formulations for application in DR soybean. Survey results indicated that late POST dicamba applications (after late June) were more likely to result in injury to non-DR soybean compared to early POST applications (e.g., May and early June) in 2017. According to respondents, off-target dicamba movement resulted both from applications in DR soybean and dicamba-based herbicides applied in corn. Although 51% of respondents noted dicamba injury on non-DR soybean, 7% of those who noted injury filed an official complaint with the Nebraska Department of Agriculture. Although DR soybean technology allowed farmers to achieve better weed control during 2017 than previous growing seasons, it is apparent that off-target movement and resistance management must be addressed to maintain the viability and effectiveness of the technology in the future.
Although the Near Threatened jaguar Panthera onca ranges from the south-west USA to central Argentina, populations outside Amazonia are generally small and isolated. One such area, the Sierra Madre de Chiapas in the state of Chiapas, Mexico, is potentially an important area for jaguar conservation but information on the species in this region is limited and its conservation status is unknown. In this study we documented the occurrence and abundance of jaguars in the Sierra Madre de Chiapas complex. We compiled all available records of the species within the region and conducted a camera-trap survey during August 2015–December 2016. Interviews were conducted to determine the perception of the jaguar by cattle owners and to obtain information on any livestock predation. We found that jaguars still occur throughout the Sierra Madre de Chiapas landscape, including the plains on the Pacific Coast of Chiapas, but its abundance in the region is low. On the basis of our findings we have incorporated the Sierra Madre de Chiapas in Mexico's National Jaguar Conservation Strategy, and recommend that international organizations include this area in their priorities for jaguar conservation. To improve coexistence between jaguars and the communities of the Sierra Madre de Chiapas, strategies need to be developed, in collaboration with the local communities, to improve livestock practices for reduction of predation by jaguars, to strengthen government conservation policies and to implement educational and communication programmes about the importance of this species in the region.
The aim of this study was to re-examine the chronic effect (>7 d) of fructose consumption on postprandial TAG, in adolescents and adults. The research was carried out in March 2017 and used different electronic databases, such as Medline® (Pubmed®), Embase® and Cochrane. The review considered clinical trials (parallel or crossed) that evaluated the effect of fructose consumption for a period longer than 7 d, in humans. Two investigators independently performed data extraction. The outcome was the absolute delta of TAG concentration in a 4-h postprandial period. The results were presented with delta mean difference between treatments with 95 % CI. The calculations were made based on random-effect models. Statistical heterogeneity of treatment effects between studies was assessed by Cochrane’s ‘Q Test’ and ‘I2’ inconsistency test. The meta-analysis of the twelve selected interventions (n 318) showed that fructose generated larger variation (δ) of TAG concentrations during the postprandial period, compared with other carbohydrates (mean difference: 8·02 (95 % CI 0·46, 15·58) mg/dl (0·09 (95 % CI 0·01, 0·18) mmol/l); I2: 74 %). High heterogeneity was generated almost exclusively by one study, and its withdrawal did not alter the result. We concluded that chronic consumption of fructose (>7 d) has a negative role on postprandial TAG in healthy adolescents and adults, as well as in overweight/obese individuals, but not in diabetics.
We show that on-off intermittency in solar and stellar cycles is a result of amplitude-phase synchronization in multiscale interactions in solar/stellar dynamos or magnetorotational instability which leads to the formation of kinematic and magnetic coherent structures, and the novel techniques of Lagrangian coherent structures can detect transport barriers and vortices such as magnetic flux tubes/ropes in solar and stellar turbulence with high accuracy.
One of the Leishmania species known to be non-infective to humans is Leishmania (Mundinia) enriettii whose vertebrate host is the guinea pig Cavia porcellus. It is a good model for cutaneous leishmaniasis, chemotherapeutic and molecular studies. In the last years, an increased interest has emerged concerning the L. (Mundinia) subgenus after the finding of Leishmania (M.) macropodum in Australia and with the description of other new/putative species such as L. (M.) martiniquensis and ‘L. (M.) siamensis’. This review focused on histopathology, glycoconjugates and innate immunity. The presence of Leishmania RNA virus and shedding of extracellular vesicles by the parasite were also evaluated.