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This study determined farm management factors associated with long-duration bovine tuberculosis (bTB) breakdowns disclosed in the period 23 May 2016 to 21 May 2018; a study area not previously subject to investigation in Northern Ireland. A farm-level epidemiological investigation (n = 2935) was completed when one or more Single Intradermal Comparative Cervical Test (SICCT) reactors or when one or more confirmed (positive histological and/or bacteriological result) lesion at routine slaughter were disclosed. A case-control study design was used to construct an explanatory set of management factors associated with long-duration bTB herd breakdowns; with a case (n = 191) defined as an investigation into a breakdown of 365 days or longer. Purchase of infected animal(s) had the strongest association as the most likely source of infection for long-duration bTB herd breakdowns followed by badgers and then cattle-to-cattle contiguous herd spread. However, 73.5% (95% CI 61.1–85.9%) of the herd type contributing to the purchase of infection source were defined as beef fattening herds. This result demonstrates two subpopulations of prolonged bTB breakdowns, the first being beef fattening herds with main source continuous purchase of infected animals and a second group of primary production herds (dairy, beef cows and mixed) with risk from multiple sources.
Individuals experiencing different medical conditions, as well as healthy volunteers, may often be interested in trial participation, and researchers similarly need to find participants to advance medical knowledge. The ResearchMatch (RM) Trials Today clinical trial searching tool leverages clinicaltrials.gov data to enable potential participants to look for trial opportunities relevant to their situation. To facilitate expanded use of this tool, we undertook a national digital public awareness campaign to increase awareness of Trials Today among members of the general public.
The awareness campaign promoted Trials Today using Facebook and digital banner messages in 2017, encompassing nine cities across the USA. The digital strategy was complemented by print media in several outlets. We employed descriptive statistics to summarize campaign metrics and site usage data during the campaign.
The campaign was successful in increasing visits to Trials Today, with 142,303 sessions logged during its run, as compared to pre-campaign data indicating 104,688 total sessions during the entire 2-year period since the site’s inception. The city-specific click-through rate for all digital impressions, combining Facebook and banner messaging, ranged from 0.50% to 1.09%, resulting in a cost-per-click range of $0.69–$1.15. In addition, visitors conducted 29,697 searches and viewed individual trial records 173,512 times.
The public awareness campaign was successful in increasing use of the RM Trials Today clinical trial searching tool. Our findings support the value of digital media messaging as a cost-effective vehicle for promoting clinical trial awareness, especially for chronic ailments.
Potential participants seek information about clinical trials for many reasons, but the process can be challenging. We analyzed 101,249 searches in ResearchMatch Trials Today, a free interface to recruiting trials from ClinicalTrials.gov. Searches from March 2015 to November 2016 included a broad range of conditions and healthy volunteer concepts, including 12,649 unique topics. Trials Today data indicate that it is being used to identify trials on a variety of topics.
Inefficiencies in the national clinical research infrastructure have been apparent for decades. The National Center for Advancing Translational Science—sponsored Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) program is able to address such inefficiencies. The Trial Innovation Network (TIN) is a collaborative initiative with the CTSA program and other National Institutes of Health (NIH) Institutes and Centers that addresses critical roadblocks to accelerate the translation of novel interventions to clinical practice. The TIN’s mission is to execute high-quality trials in a quick, cost-efficient manner. The TIN awardees are composed of 3 Trial Innovation Centers, the Recruitment Innovation Center, and the individual CTSA institutions that have identified TIN Liaison units. The TIN has launched a national scale single (central) Institutional Review Board system, master contracting agreements, quality-by-design approaches, novel recruitment support methods, and applies evidence-based strategies to recruitment and patient engagement. The TIN has received 113 submissions from 39 different CTSA institutions and 8 non-CTSA Institutions, with projects associated with 12 different NIH Institutes and Centers across a wide range of clinical/disease areas. Already more than 150 unique health systems/organizations are involved as sites in TIN-related multisite studies. The TIN will begin to capture data and metrics that quantify increased efficiency and quality improvement during operations.
The use of monthly intranasal mupirocin was associated with a significant reduction in the rate of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus transmission and Staphylococcus aureus invasive infection in a large neonatal intensive care unit. Resistance to mupirocin emerged over time, but it was rare and was not associated with adverse clinical outcomes.
In this paper, first results comparing modified Longin and ninhydrin collagen extraction methodologies are presented. The goal of this study is to investigate the bones of several species with different ages, preservation conditions, and collagen contents to determine the most suitable preparation method. Different types of samples are used such as VIRI samples, previously dated bones, and background samples. Each bone has undergone elemental analysis, infrared analysis, and 14C measurement. The results are presented and the advantages and disadvantages of each preparation method are discussed. In general, results obtained by the two methods are in accordance with the consensus value for 2σ uncertainty. For VIRI I and a mammoth bone, the ninhydrin preparation gives, respectively, 8450±70 BP and 14,870±60 BP whereas the modified Longin process gives 8365±45 BP and 14,750±100 BP in agreement with the expected values. From the experimental point of view, the modified Longin process is easier to implement than the ninhydrin protocol. From this approach, we can conclude that the modified Longin process could be preferred in most cases and particularly when the amount of bone is small and the sample is not too contaminated.
Determination of the proportion of bovine tuberculosis (bTB) breakdowns attributed to a herd purchasing infected animals has not been previously quantified using data from the Animal and Public Health Information System (APHIS) database in Northern Ireland. We used a case–control study design to account for the infection process occurring in the disclosing bTB breakdown herds. Cases (N = 6926) were cattle moving to a future confirmed bTB breakdown where they would disclose as a confirmed bTB reactor or a Lesion at Routine Slaughter (LRS). Controls (N = 303 499) were cattle moving to a future confirmed bTB breakdown where they did not become a bTB reactor or LRS. Our study showed that the cattle leaving herds which disclosed bTB within 450 days had an increased odds of becoming a confirmed bTB reactor or LRS compared with the cattle which left herds that remained free for 450 days (odds ratio (OR) = 2·09: 95% CI 1·96–2·22). Of the 12 060 confirmed bTB breakdowns included in our study (2007–2015 inclusive), 31% (95% CI 29·8–31·5) contained a confirmed bTB reactor(s) or LRS(s) at the disclosing test which entered the herd within the previous 450 days. After controlling for the infection process occurring in the disclosing bTB breakdown herd, our study showed that 6·4% (95% CI 5·9–6·8) of bTB breakdowns in Northern Ireland were directly attributable to the movement of infected animals.
The Taipan galaxy survey (hereafter simply ‘Taipan’) is a multi-object spectroscopic survey starting in 2017 that will cover 2π steradians over the southern sky (δ ≲ 10°, |b| ≳ 10°), and obtain optical spectra for about two million galaxies out to z < 0.4. Taipan will use the newly refurbished 1.2-m UK Schmidt Telescope at Siding Spring Observatory with the new TAIPAN instrument, which includes an innovative ‘Starbugs’ positioning system capable of rapidly and simultaneously deploying up to 150 spectroscopic fibres (and up to 300 with a proposed upgrade) over the 6° diameter focal plane, and a purpose-built spectrograph operating in the range from 370 to 870 nm with resolving power R ≳ 2000. The main scientific goals of Taipan are (i) to measure the distance scale of the Universe (primarily governed by the local expansion rate, H0) to 1% precision, and the growth rate of structure to 5%; (ii) to make the most extensive map yet constructed of the total mass distribution and motions in the local Universe, using peculiar velocities based on improved Fundamental Plane distances, which will enable sensitive tests of gravitational physics; and (iii) to deliver a legacy sample of low-redshift galaxies as a unique laboratory for studying galaxy evolution as a function of dark matter halo and stellar mass and environment. The final survey, which will be completed within 5 yrs, will consist of a complete magnitude-limited sample (i ⩽ 17) of about 1.2 × 106 galaxies supplemented by an extension to higher redshifts and fainter magnitudes (i ⩽ 18.1) of a luminous red galaxy sample of about 0.8 × 106 galaxies. Observations and data processing will be carried out remotely and in a fully automated way, using a purpose-built automated ‘virtual observer’ software and an automated data reduction pipeline. The Taipan survey is deliberately designed to maximise its legacy value by complementing and enhancing current and planned surveys of the southern sky at wavelengths from the optical to the radio; it will become the primary redshift and optical spectroscopic reference catalogue for the local extragalactic Universe in the southern sky for the coming decade.
Early identification of problems with psychosocial stress regulation is important for supporting mental and physical health. However, we currently lack knowledge about when reliable individual differences in stress-responsive physiology emerge and which aspects of maternal behavior determine the unfolding of infants' stress responses. Knowledge of these processes is further limited by analytic approaches that do not account for multiple levels of within- and between-family effects. In a low-risk sample (n = 100 dyads), we observed infant cortisol and mother/infant behavior during regular play and stress sessions longitudinally from age 1 to 3, and used a three-level model to separately examine variability in infant cortisol trajectories within sessions, across years, and across infants. Stable individual differences in hypothalamus–pituitary–adrenal axis regulation were observed in the first 3 years of life. Infants of less sensitive and more intrusive mothers manifested stress sensitization, that is, elevated cortisol levels during and following stress exposure, a profile related to behavioral distress. These findings have important practical implications, suggesting that children at risk for long-term stress dysregulation may be identified in the earliest years of life.
Objectives: To investigate the use, challenges and opportunities associated with using patient-reported outcomes (PROs) in studies with patients with rare lysosomal storage diseases (LSDs), we conducted interviews with researchers and health technology assessment (HTA) experts, and developed the methods for a systematic review of the literature. The purpose of the review is to identify the psychometrically sound generic and disease-specific PROs used in studies with patients with five LSDs of interest: Fabry, Gaucher (Type I), Niemann-Pick (Type B) and Pompe diseases, and mucopolysaccharidosis (Types I and II).
Methods: Researchers and HTA experts who responded to an email invitation participated in a telephone interview. We used qualitative content analysis to analyze the anonymized transcripts. We conducted a comprehensive literature search for studies that used PROs to investigate burden of disease or to assess the impact of interventions across the five LSDs of interest.
Results: Interviews with seven researchers and six HTA experts representing eight countries revealed five themes. These were: (i) the importance of using psychometrically sound PROs in studies with rare diseases, (ii) the paucity of disease-specific PROs, (iii) the importance of having PRO data for economic analyses, (iv) practical and psychometric limitations of existing PROs, and (v) suggestions for new PROs. The systematic review has been completed.
Conclusions: The interviews highlight current challenges and opportunities experienced by researchers and HTA experts involved in work with rare LSDs. The ongoing systematic review will highlight the experience, opportunities, and limitations of PROs in LSDs and provide suggestions for future research.
Background: Painful diabetic neuropathy (PDN) is a frequent complication of diabetes mellitus. Current treatment recommendations are based on short-term trials, generally of duration ≤3 months. Limited data are available on the long-term outcomes of this chronic disease. This study aims to determine the long-term clinical effectiveness of the management of chronic PDN at tertiary pain centres. Methods: From a prospective observational cohort study of patients with chronic neuropathic non-cancer pain recruited from seven Canadian tertiary pain centres, 43 patients diagnosed with PDN were identified for analysis. Data were collected according to Initiative on Methods, Measurement, and Pain Assessment in Clinical Trials (IMMPACT) guidelines including Brief Pain Inventory (BPI). Results: At 12-month follow-up, 37.2% of 43 patients achieved pain reduction of ≥30%, 51.2% achieved functional improvement with a reduction of ≥1 on the Pain Interference Scale (0-10, BPI), and 30.2% (95% CI: 17.2% to 46.1%) had achieved both these measures. Symptom management included at least 2 medication classes in 55.3%, and 3 medications classes (opioids, antidepressants, anticonvulsants) in 25.5%. Conclusions: A sizable minority of patients being managed for PDN in a tertiary care setting achieve meaningful improvement. Polypharmacy, including analgesic antidepressants, anticonvulsants and opioids, is often necessary to attain symptom management.