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The University of São Paulo Twin Panel (Painel USP de Gêmeos), based at the Institute of Psychology of the University of São Paulo, started formally in 2017. Our registry is new, but in only two years of formal existence, it comprises a volunteer sample of 4826 registered individuals (98% twins and 2% higher-order multiples), recruited at the University of São Paulo and by social media campaigns. Our main aim is to conduct and promote research with twins on psychological processes and behavior. The University of São Paulo is the largest higher education and research institution in South America, and the Painel USP de Gêmeos has great potential for fostering research on twin-related issues from a psychological perspective in Brazil and South America.
Chagas disease (CD) is a neglected parasitic condition endemic in the Americas caused by Trypanosoma cruzi. Patients present an acute phase that may or not be symptomatic, followed by lifelong chronic stage, mostly indeterminate, or with cardiac and/or digestive progressive lesions. Benznidazole (BZ) and nifurtimox are the only drugs approved for treatment but not effective in the late chronic phase and many strains of the parasite are naturally resistant. New alternative therapy is required to address this serious public health issue. Repositioning and combination represent faster, and cheaper trial strategies encouraged for neglected diseases. The effect of imatinib (IMB), a tyrosine kinase inhibitor designed for use in neoplasias, was assessed in vitro on T. cruzi and mammalian host cells. In comparison with BZ, IMB was moderately active against different strains and forms of the parasite. The combination IMB + BZ in fixed-ratio proportions was additive. Novel 14 derivatives of IMB were screened and a 3,2-difluoro-2-phenylacetamide (3e) was as potent as BZ on T. cruzi but had low selectivity index. The results demonstrate the importance of phenotypic assays, encourage the improvement of IMB derivatives to reach selectivity and testify to the use of repurposing and combination in drug screening for CD.
We study a class of parabolic equations which can be viewed as a generalized mean curvature flow acting on cylindrically symmetric surfaces with a Dirichlet condition on the boundary. We prove the existence of a unique solution by means of an approximation scheme. We also develop the theory of asymptotic stability for solutions of general parabolic problems.
Recent open-label trials show that psychedelics, such as ayahuasca, hold promise as fast-onset antidepressants in treatment-resistant depression.
To test the antidepressant effects of ayahuasca, we conducted a parallel-arm, double-blind randomized placebo-controlled trial in 29 patients with treatment-resistant depression. Patients received a single dose of either ayahuasca or placebo. We assessed changes in depression severity with the Montgomery-Åsberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS) and the Hamilton Depression Rating scale at baseline, and at 1 (D1), 2 (D2), and 7 (D7) days after dosing.
We observed significant antidepressant effects of ayahuasca when compared with placebo at all-time points. MADRS scores were significantly lower in the ayahuasca group compared with placebo at D1 and D2 (p = 0.04), and at D7 (p < 0.0001). Between-group effect sizes increased from D1 to D7 (D1: Cohen's d = 0.84; D2: Cohen's d = 0.84; D7: Cohen's d = 1.49). Response rates were high for both groups at D1 and D2, and significantly higher in the ayahuasca group at D7 (64% v. 27%; p = 0.04). Remission rate showed a trend toward significance at D7 (36% v. 7%, p = 0.054).
To our knowledge, this is the first controlled trial to test a psychedelic substance in treatment-resistant depression. Overall, this study brings new evidence supporting the safety and therapeutic value of ayahuasca, dosed within an appropriate setting, to help treat depression. This study is registered at http://clinicaltrials.gov (NCT02914769).
A study was conducted over eight consecutive days in February 2010 in which daily variations in the vertical distributions of heterotrophic bacteria, mesozooplankton and ichthyoplankton at 1–1200 m in the South-western Atlantic Ocean were investigated. Diurnal and nocturnal samples were collected at an oceanographic station at four regional depths: Tropical Water (TW) (1 m), South Atlantic Central Water (SACW) (250 m), Antarctic Intermediate Water (AAIW) (800 m) and Upper Circumpolar Deep Water (UCDW) (1200 m). Bacterial, mesozooplankton and larval fish densities significantly differed between sample depths but not between sampling tow times. In total, 154 zooplankton species and 18 larval fish species were identified. The highest number of taxa was obtained from the night-time TW trawls. This depth zone had the highest densities of mesozooplankton, larval fish and bacterioplankton (auto and heterotrophic), associated with the highest temperature and salinity and the lowest inorganic nutrient concentrations. Two sample groups were identified based on their mesozooplankton and larval fish compositions: night-time TW and other water masses (daytime TW, SACW, AAIW and UCDW). Thirty-two indicator species were detected in night-time TW. The copepod Nullosetigera impar was, to the best of our knowledge, identified for the first time on the Brazilian coast. Our results showed significant variability in the abundance and vertical distribution of mesozooplankton, bacterioplankton and larval fish along the water column in an oceanic area. We have provided new data and insights on the composition and vertical distribution of mesozooplankton, larval fish and bacterioplankton in deep waters in the South-western Atlantic Ocean.
The present study evaluated the effects of maternal dyslipidaemia on blood pressure (BP), cardiorespiratory physiology and biochemical parameters in male offspring. Wistar rat dams were fed either a control (CTL) or a dyslipidaemic (DLP) diet during pregnancy and lactation. After weaning, both CTL and DLP offspring received standard diet. On the 30th and 90th day of life, blood samples were collected for metabolic analyses. Direct measurements of BP, respiratory frequency (RF), tidal volume (VT) and ventilation (VE) under baseline condition, as well as during hypercapnia (7 % CO2) and hypoxia (KCN, 0·04 %), were recorded from awake 90-d-old male offspring. DLP dams exhibited raised serum levels of total cholesterol (TC) (4·0-fold), TAG (2·0-fold), VLDL+LDL (7·7-fold) and reduced HDL-cholesterol (2·4-fold), insulin resistance and hepatic steatosis at the end of lactation. At 30 d of age, the DLP offspring showed an increase in the serum levels of TC (P<0·05) and VLDL+LDL (P<0·05) in comparison with CTL offspring. At 90 d of age, DLP offspring exhibited higher mean arterial pressure (MAP, approximately 34 %). In the spectral analysis, the DLP group showed augmented low-frequency (LF) power and LF:high-frequency (HF) ratio when compared with CTL offspring. In addition, the DLP animals showed a larger delta variation in arterial pressure after administration of the ganglionic blocker (P=0·0003). We also found that cardiorespiratory response to hypercapnia and hypoxia was augmented in DLP offspring. In conclusion, the present data show that maternal dyslipidaemia alters cardiorespiratory physiology and may be a predisposing factor for hypertension at adulthood.
The synthesis of alloys with nominal composition for Y1-xSmxCo5 by means of arc furnace and melt-spinning, is of critical scientific importance due that if replaced partially or completely the Samarium by the Yttrium is possible understand what contribution the earth element rare to the exchange interactions that guide to increased remnant magnetization in a nanocomposite. The alloys of Y1-xSmxCo5/Co obtained by melt-spun were characterized by x-ray diffraction with a compact hexagonal crystal structure the CaCu5 type. The alloys for nanocomposites of Y1-xSmxCo5/Co ribbons show ferromagnetic behavior with good magnetic properties, order to demonstrate this the magnetic properties were measured using a pulsed field magnetometer applying a high magnetic field in order to obtain a saturated magnetization curve and a high coercivity of 0.69 MA/m and an enhanced remanence of σr/σsat ratio equal to 0.57 were determined.
Some Trypanosoma and Leishmania species are multi-host parasites whose distribution overlaps in several parts of the Brazilian Amazon basin. Despite being a common trait among wild mammals, mixed infections and their consequences for the host's health and parasite transmission are still a poorly known phenomenon. Here we describe a triple mixed infection – Trypanosoma cruzi, T. rangeli and Leishmania infantum – in a bone marrow sample from an anteater Tamandua tetradactyla captured in a house backyard from the endemic Abaetetuba municipality in the Amazon basin. T. cruzi was also isolated from blood samples. The mini-exon multiplex PCR characterization detected the infection by T. rangeli and T. cruzi (TcI genotype), while L. infantum infection was confirmed by an ITS-PCR followed by amplicon sequencing. This is the first description of T. rangeli isolation from bone marrow and the first report of L. infantum infection in xenarthrans. The implications of this finding are discussed considering the influence of mixed infections in the role of this mammal species as a putative reservoir host of these 3 trypanosomatid species.
In this work, a method based on Raman spectroscopy in combination with Principal Component Analysis (PCA) and Partial Least Square-Discriminant Analysis (PLS-DA) has been developed for the rapid differentiation of heterofermentative related lactobacilli. In a first approach, Lactobacillus kefir strains were discriminated from other species of heterofermentative lactobacilli: Lb. parakefir and Lb. brevis. After this first approach, PCA allowed for a clear differentiation between Lb. parakefir and Lb.brevis. For the first level of discrimination, PCA was performed on the whole spectra and also on delimited regions, defined taking into consideration the loading values. The best regions allowing a clear differentiation between Lb. kefir and non-Lb. kefir strains were found to be: the 1700–1500 cm−1, 1500–1185 cm−1 and 1800–400 (whole spectrum) cm−1 Raman ranges. In order to develop a classification rule, PLS-DA was carried out on the mentioned regions. This method permitted the discrimination and classification of the strains under study in two groups: Lb. kefir and non-Lb. kefir. The model was further validated using lactobacilli strains from different culture collections or strains isolated from kefir grains previously identified using molecular methods. The second approach based on PCA was also performed on the whole spectra and on delimited regions, being the regions 1700–1500 cm−1, 1500–1185 cm−1 and 1185–1020 cm−1, i.e., those allowing the clearest discrimination between Lb. parakefir and Lb. brevis. The results obtained in this work, allowed a clear discrimination within heterofermentative lactobacilli strains, proteins being the biological structures most determinant for this discrimination.
This paper describes the classification of existing integration schemes for ferroelectric memories, including both nonvolatile and volatile devices, and the status of device development for CMOS (both SRAM and DRAM architecture), GaAs JFET structures, bipolar, and true ferroelectric FETs (in which the ferroelectric is deposited in the gate region to modify the source-to-drain current when the polarization is reversed). Emphasis in the paper is on electroding, film deposition, drying and baking, and annealing steps.
Thermal evaporation is used to deposit thin films of CuZnAl on silicon substrates. For this purpose, a CuZnAl shape memory alloy is used as evaporation source. The chemical composition and the phases present in the films are evaluated at two different deposition rates: 7 and 0.2 Å/s. The thin films are heat treated to promote the diffusion of the elements and characterized by X-ray Diffraction, Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy and Scanning Transmission Electron Microscopy (STEM). It is shown that the chemical composition of the thin films is significantly different to that of the CuZnAl alloy used as evaporation source. Moreover, the films produced at 7 Å/s show a significant loss of Zn, contrary to the results obtained using a deposition rate of 0.2 Å/s. It is also observed that the composition varies across the thickness of the film, suggesting that the various alloying elements are evaporated at different rates during the deposition process. Finally the predominant phases present in the films belong to the AlxCuy family.
To evaluate the effectiveness of a positive deviance strategy for the improvement of hand hygiene compliance in 2 adult step-down units.
A 9-month, controlled trial comparing the effect of positive deviance on compliance with hand hygiene.
Two 20-bed step-down units at a tertiary care private hospital.
The first phase of our study was a 3-month baseline period (from April to June 2008) in which hand hygiene episodes were counted by use of electronic handwashing counters. From July to September 2008 (ie, the second phase), a positive deviance strategy was implemented in the east unit; the west unit was the control unit. During the period from October to December 2008 (ie, the third phase), positive deviance was applied in both units.
During the first phase, there was no statistically significant difference between the 2 step-down units in the number of episodes of hand hygiene per 1,000 patient-days or in the incidence density of healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) per 1,000 patient-days. During the second phase, there were 62,000 hand hygiene episodes per 1,000 patient-days in the east unit and 33,570 hand hygiene episodes per 1,000 patient-days in the west unit (P < .01). The incidence density of HAIs per 1,000 patient-days was 6.5 in the east unit and 12.7 in the west unit (P = .04). During the third phase, there was no statistically significant difference in hand hygiene episodes per 1,000 patient-days (P = .16) or in incidence density of HAIs per 1,000 patient-days.
A positive deviance strategy yielded a significant improvement in hand hygiene, which was associated with a decrease in the overall incidence of HAIs.
The purpose of this study was to assess the feasibility, acceptability and effect of an in-home water chlorination programme in a rural village. Previous studies at this site showed high levels of faecal coliforms in household water, high diarrhoea rates in children, and enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli and rotaviruses were the most common pathogens isolated from patients. Household water came from a pond and was stored in clay pots. No homes had sanitary facilities. A blind, cross-over trial of treatment of household water with inexpensive hypochlorite by a community health worker was carried out over 18 weeks among 20 families. Water in the clay pots was sampled serially, and symptom surveillance was done by medical students. The programme was generally acceptable to the villagers and no change in water use patterns were apparent. The mean faecal coliform level in the chlorinated water was significantly less than in the placebo treated samples (70 vs 16000 organisms/dl, P < 0·001). People living in houses receiving placebo treatment had a mean of 11·2 days of diarrhoea per year, and the highest rate of 36·7 was among children less than 2 years old. Diarrhoea rates were not significantly different among the participants while exposed to water treated with hypochlorite. We conclude that a low-cost programme of this type, which utilizes community resources, is logistically feasible, appears to be culturally acceptable in this setting, and can result in a marked reduction in water contamination. The lack of effect on diarrhoea rates suggests that improvement in water quality may affect morbidity only when other variables relating to faecal–oral agent transmission are ameliorated at the same time.
The main purpose of ArcelorMittal Tubarao skin pass is to improve
the flatness in thin gauges hot rolled strips. Since the start-up in
2002 several actions have been implemented and a consistent
evolution of quality and process control has been reached: The philosophy of production scheduling along the rolls campaign
to minimize the effect of roll wear; The definition of optimum target elongations to keep as constant
as possible the roll forces and avoid roll bending changes; The automation of bending forces control according to
characteristics of the strip and the rolls.
The rotating lance, tested in the CaO-Mg and CaC2-Mg processes,
promotes a 20% and 30% increase, respectively, in the desulphurization
rate, a 50% reduction of temperature drop, and a reduction of
metal splash occurrences. A criterion was developed that takes into
account the equipment dimensions and the mass flow rates of gas
and desulphurization material, with the objective of transposing the
results obtained at Usiminas steel shop n°1 desulphurization station,
to other industrial plants. Furthermore, it allows simulations to be
made with the objective of optimizing the pig iron desulphurization
processes that use the above mentioned materials as desulphurization
Recent data have shown that owing to their seed-predator capacity Chiroderma doriae and Chiroderma villosum trophically depart from all previously studied species within the canopy fruit-bat ensemble. In this paper, the hypothesis that morphological adaptations related to granivory have evolved in these bats is investigated and discussed. A canonical variate analysis was used to search for possible divergent trends between the masticatory apparatus of Chiroderma and other stenodermatines currently recognized in the same ensemble. A total of 142 specimens representative of eight species was included in the analysis. Species of Chiroderma can be discriminated from all other species in the sample based on the increased development of masseter-related variables (height of the anterior zygomatic arch, masseter moment arm, and masseter volume), which, in conjunction with other morphological characteristics (dentition and gape angle) discussed herein, corroborates the evolution of durophagy in this group. A complementary analysis based on a Mantel test revealed that the pattern of morphological differentiation that emerged from the canonical variate analysis does not agree with the one expected based solely on the phylogenetic relationships adopted for the canopy fruit-bats studied here. This result is consistent with the hypothesis that morphological adaptations related to granivory have evolved in Chiroderma.
Exposure to external phobic cues is an effective therapy for panic/agoraphobia but the value of exposure to interoceptive cues is unclear.
Randomised controlled comparison in panic/agoraphobia of the effects of (a) external, (b) interoceptive or (c) combined external and interoceptive self-exposure to (d) control subjects.
Eighty out-patients were randomised to a control group or to one of three forms of self-exposure treatment (external, interoceptive, or combined). Each treatment included seven sessions over 10 weeks and daily self-exposure homework. Assessments were at pre- and post-treatment and up to 1 year post-entry. Assessors remained blind during treatment.
The three self-exposure groups improved significantly and similarly at post-treatment and up to 1-year follow-up, and significantly more than did the control subjects. Rates of improvement on main outcome measures averaged 60% at post-treatment and 77% at follow-up.
The three methods of self-exposure were equally effective in reducing panic and agoraphobic symptoms in the short- and long-term.
Identifying predictors of treatment outcome can suggest ways to improve treatment delivery and understanding of its mechanism of action.
Predictors of treatment outcome were sought among 46 out-patients with obsessive–compulsive disorder who completed a nine-week randomised controlled trial of two forms of exposure therapy with ritual prevention.
In both exposure conditions the best predictor of good outcome at the end of treatment (week 9) and of follow-up (week 32) was early compliance in doing exposure homework within a week of starting treatment. A weaker predictor of good outcome at follow-up was within-session reduction in anxiety from weeks 0 to 4.
The strongest and most consistent predictor of better outcome to weeks 9 and 32 was compliance with exposure and ritual prevention in the first week of treatment.
The Yale–Brown Obsessive–Compulsive Scale (YBOCS) and Compulsion Checklist (CC) were compared with one another and with five other measures to assess their place in measuring the outcome of obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD).
Data came from a randomised trial of 46 patients with OCD who completed eight weeks of treatment by exposure and response prevention. Using a structured modelling analysis, the YBOCS and the CC were compared with a latent factor derived from five other variables (Target Rituals, Target Obsession, Clinical Global Impression, Avoidance, Disability) of baseline severity and change after treatment, and also directly with those variables.
Both the YBOCS and the CC were accurate and sensitive measures of OCD. The YBOCS related slightly more than did the CC to the latent factor and to Disability directly. The YBOCS related slightly more to Disability than it did to other measures. Inter-assessor and self v. assessor reliability was high.
The 10-item YBOCS plus the 4-item Disability scale are a simple and efficient way to measure important aspects of OCD in clinical practice.
This study tested whether adding imagined exposure to live exposure would increase the concordance between behavioural and subjective improvement in obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD).
46 OCD out-patients were randomly allocated to 9 weekly sessions of either combined live + imagined exposure/ritual prevention (Exi, n = 23), or only live exposure/ritual prevention (Ex, n = 23). Patients were asked to do 90 min of daily self-exposure at home (corresponding to Exi or Ex). Measures were: (A) behavioural; (B) subjective; (C) clinical global impression (CGI).
After 9 weeks of treatment, improvement was greater on behavioural than subjective measures (similar for the Exi and Ex groups). At 20 weeks (3-month follow-up) each group had improved slightly more on subjective measures and slightly less on behavioural ones. Two subjective measures improved less during Exi than Ex, but this difference disappeared at follow-up. The greater difference between behavioural and subjective improvement scores in Exi than in Ex did not relate to clinical outcome at the end of treatment or follow-up.
Compared to live exposure alone, combined imagined plus live exposure did not enhance behavioural/subjective concordance.