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For patients with methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) colonization, a traditional fist-bump greeting did not significantly reduce MRSA transfer in comparison to a handshake. However, transfer was reduced with a modified fist bump that minimized the surface area of contact and when hand hygiene was performed before the handshake.
Bipolar disorder (BP) and schizophrenia (SCZ) are severe, heritable psychiatric disorders. Genome-wide research suggests that the molecular basis of BP and SCZ overlap (Cross Disorder PGC Group, Lancet, 2013).
of our work was to investigate whether poligenic scores based on SCZ-associated SNPs in the PGC sample (www.med.unc.edu/pgc/) might predict the age of onset (AO) in BP-I. We hypothesized that the SCZ associated SNPs might predict the late AO of BP-I due to the common character of the SCZ-associated variants.
We selected 10,681 non-ambigous SNPs among the 102,637 SNPs present in the PGC SCZ-sample. Using these SNPs we derived poligenic scores in a Romanian sample of 243 BP-I patients with genome-wide data (604,064 SNPs) to predict the patient AO as dichotomous variable (early onset: AO≤24 years; late onset: AO>24 years). The genotyping of the Romanian patients was performed at the Institute of Human Genetics of Bonn. PLINK 1.07 (Purcell, 2009) was used for computing polygenic scores, means of which were compared by t-test between the early- and the late-AO patient groups.
2114 out of 10, 681 SCZ-SNPs were informative in our sample contributing to polygenic scores in BP-I patients. There was no significant difference in mean polygenic scores between the early- and the late-onset group of BP-I patients (t=1.14, P=0.25).
The polygenic scores based on 2114 SCZ-associated common variants did not predict the onset group in our BP-I patients under the AO-cutoff 24 years. Other AO-cutoffs and phenotypic traits (e.g. incongruent psychosis) might be tested.
Sink drainage systems are not amenable to standard methods of cleaning and disinfection. Disinfectants applied as a foam might enhance efficacy of drain decontamination due to greater persistence and increased penetration into sites harboring microorganisms.
To examine the efficacy and persistence of foam-based products in reducing sink drain colonization with gram-negative bacilli.
During a 5-month period, different methods for sink drain disinfection in patient rooms were evaluated in a hospital and its affiliated long-term care facility. We compared the efficacy of a single treatment with 4 different foam products in reducing the burden of gram-negative bacilli in the sink drain to a depth of 2.4 cm (1 inch) below the strainer. For the most effective product, the effectiveness of foam versus liquid-pouring applications, and the effectiveness of repeated foam treatments were evaluated.
A foam product containing 3.13% hydrogen peroxide and 0.05% peracetic acid was significantly more effective than the other 3 foam products. In comparison to pouring the hydrogen peroxide and peracetic acid disinfectant, the foam application resulted in significantly reduced recovery of gram-negative bacilli on days 1, 2, and 3 after treatment with a return to baseline by day 7. With repeated treatments every 3 days, a progressive decrease in the bacterial load recovered from sink drains was achieved.
An easy-to-use foaming application of a hydrogen peroxide- and peracetic acid-based disinfectant suppressed sink-drain colonization for at least 3 days. Intermittent application of the foaming disinfectant could potentially reduce the risk for dissemination of pathogens from sink drains.
Medical procedures and patient care activities may facilitate environmental dissemination of healthcare-associated pathogens such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).
Observational cohort study of MRSA-colonized patients to determine the frequency of and risk factors for environmental shedding of MRSA during procedures and care activities in carriers with positive nares and/or wound cultures. Bivariate analyses were performed to identify factors associated with environmental shedding.
A Veterans Affairs hospital.
This study included 75 patients in contact precautions for MRSA colonization or infection.
Of 75 patients in contact precautions for MRSA, 55 (73%) had MRSA in nares and/or wounds and 25 (33%) had positive skin cultures. For the 52 patients with MRSA in nares and/or wounds and at least 1 observed procedure, environmental shedding of MRSA occurred more frequently during procedures and care activities than in the absence of a procedure (59 of 138, 43% vs 8 of 83, 10%; P < .001). During procedures, increased shedding occurred ≤0.9 m versus >0.9 m from the patient (52 of 138, 38% vs 25 of 138, 18%; P = .0004). Contamination occurred frequently on surfaces touched by personnel (12 of 38, 32%) and on portable equipment used for procedures (25 of 101, 25%). By bivariate analysis, the presence of a wound with MRSA was associated with shedding (17 of 29, 59% versus 6 of 23, 26%; P = .04).
Environmental shedding of MRSA occurs frequently during medical procedures and patient care activities. There is a need for effective strategies to disinfect surfaces and equipment after procedures.
To test the hypothesis that long-term care facility (LTCF) residents with Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) or asymptomatic carriage of toxigenic strains are an important source of transmission in the LTCF and in the hospital during acute-care admissions.
A 6-month cohort study with identification of transmission events was conducted based on tracking of patient movement combined with restriction endonuclease analysis (REA) and whole-genome sequencing (WGS).
Veterans Affairs hospital and affiliated LTCF.
The study included 29 LTCF residents identified as asymptomatic carriers of toxigenic C. difficile based on every other week perirectal screening and 37 healthcare facility-associated CDI cases (ie, diagnosis >3 days after admission or within 4 weeks of discharge to the community), including 26 hospital-associated and 11 LTCF-associated cases.
Of the 37 CDI cases, 7 (18·9%) were linked to LTCF residents with LTCF-associated CDI or asymptomatic carriage, including 3 of 26 hospital-associated CDI cases (11·5%) and 4 of 11 LTCF-associated cases (36·4%). Of the 7 transmissions linked to LTCF residents, 5 (71·4%) were linked to asymptomatic carriers versus 2 (28·6%) to CDI cases, and all involved transmission of epidemic BI/NAP1/027 strains. No incident hospital-associated CDI cases were linked to other hospital-associated CDI cases.
Our findings suggest that LTCF residents with asymptomatic carriage of C. difficile or CDI contribute to transmission both in the LTCF and in the affiliated hospital during acute-care admissions. Greater emphasis on infection control measures and antimicrobial stewardship in LTCFs is needed, and these efforts should focus on LTCF residents during hospital admissions.
X-ray fluorescence (XRF) has been employed as one of several orthogonal means of screening materials to prevent counterfeit and adulterated products from entering the product stream. We document the use of principal component analysis (PCA) of XRF data on compositionally similar and dissimilar stainless steels for the purpose of testing the feasibility of employing XRF spectra to parse and bin these alloys as the same or significantly different alloy materials. The results indicate that XRF spectra can separate and assign alloys via PCA, but that important corrections for detector drift and scaling must be performed in order to achieve valid results.
Implementation of an antimicrobial stewardship program bundle for urinary tract infections among 92 patients led to a higher rate of discontinuation of therapy for asymptomatic bacteriuria (52.4% vs 12.5%; P =.004), more appropriate durations of therapy (88.7% vs 63.6%; P =.001), and significantly higher overall bundle compliance (75% vs 38.2%; P < .001).
The nutrient choline is necessary for membrane synthesis and methyl donation, with increased requirements during lactation. The majority of immune development occurs postnatally, but the importance of choline supply for immune development during this critical period is unknown. The objective of this study was to determine the importance of maternal supply of choline during suckling on immune function in their offspring among rodents. At parturition, Sprague–Dawley dams were randomised to either a choline-devoid (ChD; n 7) or choline-sufficient (ChS, 1 g/kg choline; n 10) diet with their offspring euthanised at 3 weeks of age. In a second experiment, offspring were weaned to a ChS diet until 10 weeks of age (ChD-ChS, n 5 and ChS-ChS, n 9). Splenocytes were isolated, and parameters of immune function were measured. The ChD offspring received less choline in breast milk and had lower final body and organ weight compared with ChS offspring (P<0·05), but this effect disappeared by week 10 with choline supplementation from weaning. ChD offspring had a higher proportion of T cells expressing activation markers (CD71 or CD28) and a lower proportion of total B cells (CD45RA+) and responded less to T cell stimulation (lower stimulation index and less IFN-γ production) ex vivo (P<0·05). ChD-ChS offspring had a lower proportion of total and activated CD4+ T cells, and produced less IL-6 after mitogen stimulation compared with cells from ChS-ChS (P<0·05). Our study suggests that choline is required in the suckling diet to facilitate immune development, and choline deprivation during this critical period has lasting effects on T cell function later in life.
High-temperature X-ray diffraction with concurrent gas chromatography (GC) was used to study cobalt disulfide cathode pellets disassembled from thermal batteries. When CoS2 cathode materials were analyzed in an air environment, oxidation of the K(Br, Cl) salt phase in the cathode led to the formation of K2SO4 that subsequently reacted with the pyrite-type CoS2 phase leading to cathode decomposition between ~260 and 450 °C. Independent thermal analysis experiments, i.e. simultaneous thermogravimetric analysis/differential scanning calorimetry/mass spectrometry (MS), augmented the diffraction results and support the overall picture of CoS2 decomposition. Both gas analysis measurements (i.e. GC and MS) from the independent experiments confirmed the formation of SO2 off-gas species during breakdown of the CoS2. In contrast, characterization of the same cathode material under inert conditions showed the presence of CoS2 throughout the entire temperature range of analysis.
We present the first experimentally determined oscillator strengths for the Pb ii transitions at 1203.6 Å and 1433.9 Å, obtained from lifetime measurements made using beam-foil techniques. We also present new detections of these lines in the interstellar medium from an analysis of archival spectra acquired by the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph onboard the Hubble Space Telescope. Our observations of the Pb ii λ1203 line represent the first detection of this transition in interstellar gas. Our experimental f-values for the Pb ii λ1203 and λ1433 transitions are consistent with recent theoretical results, including our own relativistic calculations, but are significantly smaller than previous values based on older calculations. Our new f-value for Pb ii λ1433 (0.321 ± 0.034) yields an increase in the interstellar abundance of Pb of 0.43 dex over estimates based on the f-value listed by Morton. With our revised f-values, and with our new detections of Pb ii λ1203 and λ1433, we find that the depletion of Pb onto interstellar grains is not nearly as severe as previously thought, and is very similar to the depletions seen for elements such as Zn and Sn, which have similar condensation temperatures.
Choline demands during lactation are high; however, detailed knowledge is lacking regarding the optimal dietary intake during this critical period. The present study was designed to determine the effects of varying intakes of choline on maternal immune function during lactation. Primiparous Sprague–Dawley rats (n 42) were randomised 24-48 h before birth and fed the following diets for 21 d: choline-devoid (0 g choline/kg diet; D, n 10); 1·0 g choline/kg diet (C1, n 11); 2·5 g choline/kg diet (C2·5, n 10); 6·2 g choline/kg diet (C6, n 11). Splenocytes were isolated and stimulated ex vivo with concanavalin A, lipopolysaccharide (LPS) or CD3/CD28. D and C6 dams had lower final body weight, spleen weight and average pup weight than C1 dams (P< 0·05). There was a linear relationship between free choline concentration in pup stomach contents with maternal dietary choline content (P< 0·001, r2 0·415). Compared with C1 and C2·5, D spleens had a lower proportion of mature T cells and activated suppressor cells, and this resulted in reduced cytokine production after stimulation (P< 0·05). Feeding 6·2 g choline/kg diet resulted in a higher cytokine production after stimulation with CD3/CD28 (P< 0·05). Except for a higher IL-6 production after LPS stimulation with cells from the C2·5 dams (P< 0·05), there were no differences between the C1 and C2·5 dams. For the first time, we show that feeding lactating mothers a diet free of choline has substantial effects on their immune function and on offspring growth. Additionally, excess dietary choline had adverse effects on maternal and offspring body weight but only minimal effects on maternal immune function.
the intellectual work that faculty members do when they use their disciplinary knowledge (in our case, mathematics) to investigate a question about their students' learning (and their teaching), submit their findings to peer review, and make them public for others to build upon.
This chapter considers questions and situations that might prompt a SoTL study. It presents a taxonomy of SoTL questions derived from the work of Carnegie scholars that can be useful in guiding the development of a project. We discuss how disciplinary knowledge can be brought to bear on framing SoTL research questions. We describe how literature searches can inform SoTL studies and give suggestions for conducting a search. The chapter includes illustrative examples and points to additional examples in Part II.
A Typical Starting Point
In one of the formative articles of the scholarship of teaching and learning movement in the United States, Randy Bass (1999) discussed the different reactions that “teaching problems” and “research problems” typically garner from faculty members, with the latter engendering far more positive interest and reaction. He posited that one of the tenets of SoTL is that a teaching problem should be viewed as an invitation to a scholarly investigation, similar to how most faculty members view a research problem.
Here is a problem that any teacher can relate to:
My students aren't as prepared for class as I would like them to be.
An attempt to fix the problem might lead to the following sequence of thoughts or actions.
• What if I give my students reading assignments in the textbook? (Few will actually read and those who do won't read carefully enough.)
• What if I give them reading questions for the assigned reading? (They may read just enough to answer the questions.)
• What if I also ask them to generate their own questions after reading? (I probably won't be satisfied with the questions they ask.)
• How can I get them to ask better questions? (What do I mean by better questions?)
Scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL) is a scholarly activity whose history is generally not well known to teaching or research mathematicians. Many activities are labeled SoTL, some appropriately and others not. In light of this, Chapter 1 has several goals. It aims to inform the reader about the origins of the scholarship of teaching and learning, the efforts to forge connections between SoTL and academic disciplines, and the emergence of SoTL within mathematics. It attempts to set SoTL apart from good teaching, scholarly teaching, and, to the extent possible, research in undergraduate mathematics education (RUME). The chapter addresses the issue of evaluating and valuing this work for tenure and promotion, a matter of great concern for junior faculty members. It closes with a brief discussion of the benefits of SoTL, a topic that we revisit in the Epilogue, Chapter 20, where we present a synthesis of the benefits our authors experienced from participating in SoTL.
The Origins of SoTL in Higher Education
In 1990, Ernest Boyer, President of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, introduced the expression “scholarship of teaching” into the vocabulary of higher education. His book, Scholarship Reconsidered (Boyer, 1990), called for colleges and universities to embrace a broader vision of scholarship in order to tap the full range of faculty talents across their entire careers and to foster vital connections between academic institutions and their surrounding communities. Boyer argued for the recognition of four types of scholarship: discovery, application, integration, and teaching. The scholarship of discovery refers to what is traditionally called research in most disciplines. The scholarship of application, now frequently called scholarship of engagement, refers to applying knowledge to consequential problems, often conducted with and for community partners. The scholarship of integration makes connections between disciplines. More and more, interdisciplinary work is being recognized as essential to solving complex real world problems. These scholarships may have different interpretations depending on the discipline and type of institution. For example, for engineers, consulting work is often considered scholarship of application.