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Psychiatric disorders are highly polygenic and show patterns of partner resemblance. Partner resemblance has direct population-level genetic implications if it is caused by assortative mating, but not if it is caused by convergence or social homogamy. Using genetics may help distinguish these different mechanisms. Here, we investigated whether partner resemblance for schizophrenia and bipolar disorder is influenced by assortative mating using polygenic risk scores (PRSs).
PRSs from The Danish High-Risk and Resilience Study—VIA 7 were compared between parents in three subsamples: population-based control parent pairs (N=198), parent pairs where at least one parent had schizophrenia (N=193), and parent pairs where at least one parent had bipolar disorder (N=115).
The PRS for schizophrenia was predictive of schizophrenia in the full sample and showed a significant correlation between parent pairs (r=0.121, p=0.0440), indicative of assortative mating. The PRS for bipolar disorder was also correlated between parent pairs (r=0.162, p=0.0067), but it was not predictive of bipolar disorder in the full sample, limiting the interpretation.
Our study provides genetic evidence for assortative mating for schizophrenia, with important implications for our understanding of the genetics of schizophrenia.
This report describes a cluster of patients infected by Serratia marcescens in a metropolitan neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) and a package of infection control interventions that enabled rapid, effective termination of the outbreak.
Cross-sectional analytical study using whole-genome sequencing (WGS) for phylogenetic cluster analysis and identification of virulence and resistance genes.
NICU in a metropolitan tertiary-care hospital in Sydney, Australia.
All neonates admitted to the level 2 and level 3 neonatal unit.
Active inpatient and environmental screening for Serratia marcescens isolates with WGS analysis for identification of resistance genes as well as cluster relatedness between isolates. Planning and implementation of a targeted, multifaceted infection control intervention.
The cluster of 10 neonates colonized or infected with Serratia marcescens was identified in a metropolitan NICU. Two initial cases involved devastating intracranial infections with brain abscesses, highlighting the virulence of this organism. A targeted and comprehensive infection control intervention guided by WGS findings enabled termination of this outbreak within 15 days of onset. WGS examination demonstrated phylogenetic linkage across the cluster, and genomic unrelatedness of later strains identified in the neonatal unit and elsewhere.
A comprehensive, multipronged, infection control package incorporating close stakeholder engagement, frequent microbiological patient screening, environmental screening, enhanced cleaning, optimization of hand hygiene and healthcare worker education was paramount to the prompt control of Serratia marcescens transmission in this neonatal outbreak. WGS was instrumental in establishing relatedness between isolates and identification of possible transmission pathways in an outbreak setting.
Ocular abnormalities and visual dysfunction have been associated with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Our study assessed the risks of developing retinal diseases in individuals with ASD.
In all, 18 874 patients with ASD and 188 740 controls were selected from the Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database between 2001 and 2009. The control group was matched based on demographic characteristics and medical and ophthalmological comorbidities. The hazard ratios (HRs) with 95% confidence intervals were calculated with Cox-regression analyses adjusted for selected confounders.
Individuals with ASD had a higher incidence of developing retinal diseases (1.48‰ vs 0.73‰, P < .001), and the diagnosis of retinal diseases occurred earlier than the controls (3.73 vs 6.28 years, P < .001). When compared to the control group, the HR of developing retinal diseases in the ASD group was 1.75 (95%: 1.04-2.94) and 7.84 (95%: 3.51-17.47) for retinal detachment. There was no association between the cumulative daily dose of atypical antipsychotics and the incidence of retinal diseases in the ASD group.
Individuals with ASD have a higher risk of developing retinal detachment and are diagnosed with retinal diseases earlier than controls. Future research is needed to elucidate the mechanisms mediating the progression of retinal diseases in the ASD population.
The establishment of a Westphalian world order gave rise to universally accepted Western norms for state sovereignty, legal state equality, and nonintervention, among other principles. Today, China is both challenging broadly accepted Western norms and capitalizing on certain Westphalian values. According to Chinese representative Yang Jiechi, who participated in high-level strategic talks with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan on 18– 19 March 2021, China's political discourse emphasizes a defence of the UN Charter's core principle of respect for the sovereignty of individual countries. During this meeting, Yang presented China as both emphasizing its own characteristics and reminding the United States that it should not use a double standard when applying the UN Charter to international relations and governance. Ever since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the world has witnessed a return to traditional forms of self-help sovereignty in cross-state competition. The pandemic is one of several reasons why cooperation and trust between different types of regimes have sharply declined while fragmentation has increased. In China's case, the more Beijing wants to defend its autonomy when confronting Western powers in areas such as foreign policy, the more it is being treated by the rest of the world as the main international threat, perhaps even bearing responsibility for the COVID-19 pandemic itself (Kavalski, 2021). In this chapter I will argue that this view of China is a product of our established way of understanding world affairs according to Westphalian state order principles and their epistemology, both built on assumptions regarding self-help and estrangement among nation states.
Some International Relations (IR) scholars have started to describe the political practices of China and other Asian countries as examples of an emerging ‘Eastphalian order’. It has to be acknowledged that this proposition suffers from some geopolitical limitations. For instance, the projected Eastphalian order appears to suggests that China and its neighbouring countries have the potential to form a strong multilateral base for pushing against the constraints of the existing Westphalian order, which might be a contributing factor to destructive competition among Asian countries.
Family coaggregation of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), autism spectrum disorder (ASD), bipolar disorder (BD), major depressive disorder (MDD) and schizophrenia have been presented in previous studies. The shared genetic and environmental factors among psychiatric disorders remain elusive.
This nationwide population-based study examined familial coaggregation of major psychiatric disorders in first-degree relatives (FDRs) of individuals with ASD. Taiwan's National Health Insurance Research Database was used to identify 26 667 individuals with ASD and 67 998 FDRs of individuals with ASD. The cohort was matched in 1:4 ratio to 271 992 controls. The relative risks (RRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) of ADHD, ASD, BD, MDD and schizophrenia were assessed among FDRs of individuals with ASD and ASD with intellectual disability (ASD-ID).
FDRs of individuals with ASD have higher RRs of major psychiatric disorders compared with controls: ASD 17.46 (CI 15.50–19.67), ADHD 3.94 (CI 3.72–4.17), schizophrenia 3.05 (CI 2.74–3.40), BD 2.22 (CI 1.98–2.48) and MDD 1.88 (CI 1.76–2.00). Higher RRs of schizophrenia (4.47, CI 3.95–5.06) and ASD (18.54, CI 16.18–21.23) were observed in FDRs of individuals with both ASD-ID, compared with ASD only.
The risk for major psychiatric disorders was consistently elevated across all types of FDRs of individuals with ASD. FDRs of individuals with ASD-ID are at further higher risk for ASD and schizophrenia. Our results provide leads for future investigation of shared etiologic pathways of ASD, ID and major psychiatric disorders and highlight the importance of mental health care delivered to at-risk families for early diagnoses and interventions.
Current anti-Chinese sentiment in the international community has emerged from a knowledge-production background that entails the material fact of China's rising power and ideational factors tied to how the rising China phenomenon is interpreted. The ideational factors can be divided into two groups. One analyses China according to established Western IR theories that describe the country in terms of either threat or opportunity, thereby rendering China as part of an established universal ontology. A second group approaches China's experiences in a more sympathetic light, but still conceptualizes China's rise according to fixed categories such as “nation-state.” This paper argues that both of these groups are guilty of creating self-fulfilling prophecies – that is, they consistently theorize China in opposition to the West owing to the rational epistemology upon which they built their knowledge or perceptions of China. This epistemology conflicts with the efforts of Chinese IR scholars to evaluate China's rise in a relational manner.
Population-based colorectal cancer (CRC) screening programs that use a fecal immunochemical test (FIT) are often faced with a noncompliance issue and its subsequent waiting time (WT) for those FIT positives complying with confirmatory diagnosis. We aimed to identify factors associated with both of the correlated problems in the same model.
A total of 294,469 subjects, either with positive FIT test results or having a family history, collected from 2004 to 2013 were enrolled for analysis. We applied a hurdle Poisson regression model to accommodate the hurdle of compliance and also its related WT for undergoing colonoscopy while assessing factors responsible for the mixture of the two outcomes.
The effect on compliance and WT varied with contextual factors, such as geographic areas, type of screening units, and level of urbanization. The hurdle score, representing the risk score in association with noncompliance, and the WT score, reflecting the rate of taking colonoscopy, were used to classify subjects into each of three groups representing the degree of compliance and the level of health awareness.
Our model was not only successfully applied to evaluating factors associated with the compliance and the WT distribution, but also developed into a useful assessment model for stratifying the risk and predicting whether and when screenees comply with the procedure of receiving confirmatory diagnosis given contextual factors and individual characteristics.
The impact of age on the development of depression among patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) at stages before dialysis is not well known. We aimed to explore the incidence of major depression among predialysis CKD patients of successively older ages through midlife.
We conducted a retrospective cohort study using the longitudinal health insurance database 2005 in Taiwan. This study investigated 17,889 predialysis CKD patients who were further categorized into study (i.e. middle and old-aged) groups and comparison group aged 18–44. The International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification (ICD-9-CM) was applied for coding diseases.
The group aged 75 and over had the lowest (hazard ratio [HR] 0.47; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.32–0.69) risk of developing major depression, followed by the group aged 65–74 (HR 0.67; 95% CI 0.49–0.92), using the comparison group as reference. The adjusted survival curves showed significant differences in cumulative major depression-free survival between different age groups. We observed that the risk of major depression development decreases with higher age. Females were at a higher risk of major depression than males among predialyasis CKD patients.
The incidence of major depression declines with higher age in predialysis CKD patients over midlife. Among all age groups, patients aged 75 and over have the lowest risk of developing major depression. A female preponderance in major depression development is present. We suggest that depression prevention and therapy should be integrated into the standard care for predialysis CKD patients, especially for those young and female.
This study investigated the prevalence and characteristics of schizophrenia in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) in Taiwan.
National Health Insurance claims data for patients with principal diagnoses of schizophrenia and T2DM were analysed.
Compared with patients with schizophrenia in the general population (GP), those with schizophrenia and T2DM were more likely to have higher Charlson comorbidity index (CCI) scores and multiple comorbidities, and were older. The prevalence of schizophrenia was significantly higher in patients with T2DM than in the GP from 2000 to 2010. In addition, during this period, the prevalence of schizophrenia in patients with T2DM increased from 0.64% to 0.85%; such an increase in the GP was also observed. A high prevalence of schizophrenia was observed in patients with T2DM aged less than 60 years old; those residing in eastern Taiwan; those with incomes of ≤NT$17,280, NT$17,281–NT$22,880, NT$22,881–NT$28,800, and NT$36,301–NT$45,800; and those with CCI > 2.
Our study found the prevalence of schizophrenia is higher in patients with T2DM than in the GP, particularly those with earlier ages less than 60 years old. Public health initiatives are necessary to prevent and treat schizophrenia in patients with T2DM, specifically for those with the aforementioned and premature death risk.
This paper develops an analytically tractable, two-country, two-traded-good dynamic general-equilibrium model of money to examine the long-run and short-run effects of a temporary change in the domestic inflation target on the trade pattern, the terms of trade, the foreign exchange rate, and the capital accumulation of each country and of the world economy. We find that such a temporary monetary innovation can generate permanent effects on the world distribution of capital and the pattern of trade, resulting in nonneutrality in an otherwise money-neutral cash-in-advance setting. This change also leads to very rich transitional dynamics that we fully characterize analytically. In particular, endogenous responses in transition can be monotone or nonmonotone and can exhibit over-shooting. Our analytic findings and quantitative results help explain some noticeable changes in the capital accumulation, output, and bilateral trade of several countries adopting inflation targeting. Since the permanent effects of a temporary change in the domestic inflation target on the pattern of international trade and the performance of the macroeconomy are driven by a new channel through the world distribution of capital, we add new insights to the literature.
This paper discusses a pulse electroplating method for preparing copper (Cu)-coated gas diffusion electrodes (GDEs) for the electrochemical conversion of carbon dioxide (CO2) to hydrocarbons such as ethylene. Ionomer coating and air-plasma surface pre-treatments were explored as means of hydrophilizing the carbon surface to enable adhesion of electrodeposited material. The pulsed-current electrodeposition method used successfully generated copper and copper oxide micro- and nano-particles on the prepared surfaces. Copper(I) species identified on the ionomer-treated GDEs are presumed to be highly active for the selective generation of ethylene as compared to other gaseous byproducts of CO2 reduction. Conversely, copper catalysts deposited onto plasma-treated GDEs were found to have poor activity for hydrocarbon production, likely due to substantial metallic character. Of note, plasma treatment of an ionomer-treated GDE after copper plating yielded further improvements in catalytic activity and durability towards ethylene production.
Individual relationships between Mainland China and Tibet, Xinjiang, Hong Kong and Taiwan are considered confusing for some because China’s rising international power is not resulting in stronger calls for a shared identity based on ‘Chinese pride’ or historical links. Instead, China’s economic growth appears to be provoking increasingly stronger calls for autonomy or independence. In this article I discuss why Beijing’s self-described peace and development policy is failing to procure positive responses in those four regions, with a primary focus on the failed use of narrowly-defined Westphalian thinking to understand relevant issues. I argue that the reason for this failure is the tension between the individualist ontology underlying modern international politics (as expressed in terms of Westphalian sovereignty) and the relational ontology underpinning a traditional Chinese politics built upon a tianxia (‘all-under-heaven’) world view. This tension has become conspicuous in the context of China’s recent rise and Beijing’s growing confidence in contesting Western power. The Chinese leadership’s reliance on arguments involving historical connections with Tibet, Xinjiang, Hong Kong and Taiwan, and calls for autonomy or independence from citizens living in those four areas, are examples of this contestation.
SiO2-MgF2/TiO2 double-layer films with antireflective, self-cleaning and adherent properties were prepared by spin-coating SiO2-MgF2 and TiO2 sol on glass substrate successively and subsequently being calcined at 250°C. The optical and structural properties of films have been investigated by visible spectrophotometer and field emission scanning electron microscope, respectively. At the same time, self-cleaning property generated from superhydrophilicity and photocatalysis was obtained. The results indicated that the as-prepared SiO2-MgF2/TiO2 double-layer films show a maximum increase in transmittance near 520 nm wavelength of 2.8% and photocatalytic property with the R value of 4.7(JIS R 1703–2).It has been demonstrated that high transmittance, self-cleaning and adherent composite has been obtained by a simple sol–gel route presenting good potential to be applied on photovoltaics systems.
There is increasing interest in the use of additive manufacturing (AM) for Ni-based superalloys due to their various applications in the aerospace and power-generation sectors. Ni-based superalloys are known to have a complex chemistry, with over a dozen alloying elements in most alloys, enabling them to achieve outstanding high-temperature mechanical performance as well as oxidation resistance when processed using conventional routes (e.g., casting and forging). Nonetheless, this complex chemistry results in the formation of various phases that could affect their processability using AM, resulting in cracking. Furthermore, due to the directional solidification and rapid cooling associated with AM processes, the alloys experience significant anisotropy due to the epitaxially grown microstructure, as well as the residual stresses that can sometimes be difficult to mitigate using thermal postprocessing techniques. This article highlights the outstanding issues in Ni-based superalloys AM processing, with special emphasis on defect formation mechanisms, process optimization, and residual stress development.
This paper explores the growth effects of both consumption- and wealth-induced social comparisons in a unified small open endogenous growth model. We analytically show that in an open economy not only do these two distinct status-seeking motives have very different growth effects, but these growth effects are also quite different from the conventional wisdom based on a closed economy. Status-seeking behavior need not favor economic growth. The asset portfolios of households and the imperfection of the international asset market both play an important role and jointly govern the growth effects of social status seeking. We also perform a quantitative experiment, showing that our analytical findings are robust and empirically plausible. Our analysis provides novel implications for social comparisons and new insights into the literature.
Hypoxia is the primary stimulus for the production of erythropoietin (EPO) in both fetal and adult life. Here, we investigated fetal plasma EPO concentrations in monochorionic (MC) twin pregnancies with selective intrauterine growth restriction (sIUGR) and abnormal umbilical artery (UA) Doppler. We diagnosed sIUGR in presence of (1) birth-weight discordance >20% and (2) either twin with a birth weight <10th percentile. An abnormal UA Doppler was defined as a persistent absent-reverse end diastolic flow (AREDF). The intertwin EPO ratio was calculated as the plasma EPO level of the smaller (or small-for-gestational-age) twin divided by the EPO concentration of the larger (or appropriate-for-gestational-age (AGA)) twin. Thirty-two MC twin pairs were included. Of these, 17 pairs were normal twins (Group 1), seven pairs were twins with sIUGR without UA Doppler abnormalities (Group 2), and eight pairs were twins with sIUGR and UA Doppler abnormalities (Group 3). The highest EPO ratio was identified in Group 3 (p < .001) but no significant differences were observed between Groups 1 and 2. Fetal hemoglobin levels did not differ significantly in the three groups, and fetal EPO concentration did not correlate with gestational age at birth. We conclude that fetal plasma EPO concentrations are selectively increased in MC twin pregnancies with sIUGR and abnormal UA Doppler, possibly as a result of uncompensated hypoxia.