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The screen for cognitive impairment in psychiatry (SCIP) is a brief, accessible scale designed for detecting cognitive deficits in psychiatric disorders.
The objective of this study is to test the SCIP's validity as a cognitive test by comparison with standard neuropsychological scale using the Pearson's correlation.
Aims Test the convergent and discriminant validity of the SCIP within the Italian SCIP validation project.
Patients between 18 and 65 years who are in a stable phase of the disease, diagnosed with schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder or bipolar I disorder were enrolled in this study, from the community mental health department of Ferrara.
The tests were administered to 110 patients (mean age: 45 ± 11,4) and to 86 controls (mean age: 35 ± 12,6) of both sex. SCIP presents high correlation with the R-BANS total score (P < 0.01) and the subscales (verbal learning test-immediate, working memory, verbal fluency test, verbal learning test-delayed, processing speed test, P < 0.01). There are significant differences (P < 0.01) in all SCIP dimensions between patient and control group (Table 1).
Our analysis confirm the results of the English, French and Spanish version of the SCIP regarding convergent and discriminant validity. The SCIP represents a valid, simple and brief screening tool for the cognitive evaluation of patients with schizophrenia-spectrum disorders.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
Short dietary assessment instruments are often included to large-scale twin studies that focus on multiple health behaviors and disease outcomes. Due to their feasibility and low cost, food frequency questionnaires (FFQs) are usually employed to provide data on dietary intake and diet quality. Diet quality have been linked with eating styles such as meal and snacking frequency. However, little is known about how diet quality is related with various eating styles. We aimed to construct a food-based diet quality score (DQS) from a short FFQ to estimate diet quality and to examine its association with eating styles and nutrient intakes in Finnish twins. Participants were 3592 twin individuals (764 dizygotic [DZ] pairs and 430 monozygotic [MZ] pairs) aged 31–37 from the wave 5 of the FinnTwin16 study. The DQS (range 0–12 points) was constructed from a short FFQ that included dark bread, white bread, fruits and berries, vegetables, fish, whole grain, fast food, fat free or reduced-fat milk or milk products, sugar-sweetened soft drinks or juices, energy drinks, butter and margarine/vegetable oils. Eating styles were self-reported by questionnaire. Nutrient intakes were calculated from food diaries completed in a subsample of 249 twin individuals (45 same-sex DZ pairs and 60 MZ pairs). Data were analyzed using Pearson correlations and multiple regression models adjusted for covariates in individuals and pairwise analyses. Both in individuals and within twin pairs, a higher diet quality was associated with health-conscious eating, having breakfast, fewer evening meals, and a higher frequency and regularity of eating. No associations were found with night eating styles, food as a reward or food restricting/overeating. Among individuals, the DQS was positively correlated with the intakes of protein, fiber and magnesium and negatively with the intakes of total fat, saturated fat and sucrose (rmax = 0.30 for magnesium). The associations with saturated fat, fiber and magnesium remained significant within same-sex DZ twin pairs (rmax = 0.40 for magnesium) and with sucrose within MZ twin pairs (r = -0.42). The DQS is an easy-to-use short tool for ranking individuals and twin pairs according to overall diet quality. The DQS reflects eating styles and intakes of key nutrients related to diet quality.
Bilingual children show a number of advantages in the domain of communication. The aim of the current study was to investigate whether differences in interactions are present before productive language skills emerge. For a duration of 5 minutes, 64 parents and their 14-month-old infants explored a decorated room together. The coordination of their behaviors in the modalities of action, language, and gesture was coded. The results showed no differences in interactions across different language statuses. In two additional analyses, we first compared monolinguals and bilinguals with caregivers who shared the same language and culture. Results showed the same pattern of non-difference. Second, we compared bilinguals with caregivers from different cultures. The rate and duration of coordination differed across infants with different cultural backgrounds. The findings suggest that exposure to two languages is not sufficient to explain the previously identified beneficial effects in the communicative interactions of bilingual children.
The Minnesota Center for Twin and Family Research (MCTFR) comprises multiple longitudinal, community-representative investigations of twin and adoptive families that focus on psychological adjustment, personality, cognitive ability and brain function, with a special emphasis on substance use and related psychopathology. The MCTFR includes the Minnesota Twin Registry (MTR), a cohort of twins who have completed assessments in middle and older adulthood; the Minnesota Twin Family Study (MTFS) of twins assessed from childhood and adolescence into middle adulthood; the Enrichment Study (ES) of twins oversampled for high risk for substance-use disorders assessed from childhood into young adulthood; the Adolescent Brain (AdBrain) study, a neuroimaging study of adolescent twins; and the Siblings Interaction and Behavior Study (SIBS), a study of adoptive and nonadoptive families assessed from adolescence into young adulthood. Here we provide a brief overview of key features of these established studies and describe new MCTFR investigations that follow up and expand upon existing studies or recruit and assess new samples, including the MTR Study of Relationships, Personality, and Health (MTR-RPH); the Colorado-Minnesota (COMN) Marijuana Study; the Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development (ABCD) study; the Colorado Online Twins (CoTwins) study and the Children of Twins (CoT) study.
Neurodevelopment is sensitive to genetic and pre/postnatal environmental influences. These effects are likely mediated by epigenetic factors, yet current knowledge is limited. Longitudinal twin studies can delineate the link between genetic and environmental factors, epigenetic state at birth and neurodevelopment later in childhood. Building upon our study of the Peri/postnatal Epigenetic Twin Study (PETS) from gestation to 6 years of age, here we describe the PETS 11-year follow-up in which we will use neuroimaging and cognitive testing to examine the relationship between early-life environment, epigenetics and neurocognitive outcomes in mid-childhood. Using a within-pair twin model, the primary aims are to (1) identify early-life epigenetic correlates of neurocognitive outcomes; (2) determine the developmental stability of epigenetic effects and (3) identify modifiable environmental risk factors. Secondary aims are to identify factors influencing gut microbiota between 6 and 11 years of age to investigate links between gut microbiota and neurodevelopmental outcomes in mid-childhood. Approximately 210 twin pairs will undergo an assessment at 11 years of age. This includes a direct child cognitive assessment, multimodal magnetic resonance imaging, biological sampling, anthropometric measurements and a range of questionnaires on health and development, behavior, dietary habits and sleeping patterns. Data from complementary data sources, including the National Assessment Program — Literacy and Numeracy and the Australian Early Development Census, will also be sought. Following on from our previous focus on relationships between growth, cardiovascular health and oral health, this next phase of PETS will significantly advance our understanding of the environmental interactions that shape the developing brain.
The first twin study in Serbia began in 2011 as a part of the research project, ‘Psychological Foundations of Mental Health: Hereditary and Environmental Factors’. At the same time, the research team from the Faculty of Philosophy and Faculty of Medicine in Novi Sad established the first Serbian twin registry. The registry is intended primarily for the purpose of the research in behavioral genetics, as well as potential future studies in human genetics. It includes information on 1658 volunteers, including twin-pairs, their parent and siblings. The behavioral genetic study of adult twins has been focused on the hereditary and environmental sources of variance of different psychological characteristics, such as personality traits, cognitive abilities, executive functions and aggression, as well as some anthropometric measures and aspects of mental and physical health. Certain molecular genetic analyses have also been performed. The research team is currently starting the longitudinal twin study of children, which will be focused on different indicators of emotional, cognitive and physical development.
The purpose of this review is to provide a detailed and updated description of the FinnTwin16 (FT16) study and its future directions. The Finnish Twin Cohort comprises three different cohorts: the Older Twin Cohort established in the 1970s and the FinnTwin12 and FT16 initiated in the 1990s. FT16 was initiated in 1991 to identify the genetic and environmental precursors of alcoholism, but later the scope of the project expanded to studying the determinants of various health-related behaviors and diseases in different stages of life. The main areas addressed are alcohol use and its consequences, smoking, physical activity, overall physical health, eating behaviors and eating disorders, weight development, obesity, life satisfaction and personality. To date, five waves of data collection have been completed and the sixth is now planned. Data from the FT16 cohort have contributed to several hundred studies and many substudies, with more detailed phenotyping and collection of omics data completed or underway. FT16 has also contributed to many national and international collaborations.
Twins Research Australia (TRA) is a community of twins and researchers working on health research to benefit everyone, including twins. TRA leads multidisciplinary research through the application of twin and family study designs, with the aim of sustaining long-term twin research that, both now and in the future, gives back to the community. This article summarizes TRA’s recent achievements and future directions, including new methodologies addressing causation, linkage to health, economic and educational administrative datasets and to geospatial data to provide insight into health and disease. We also explain how TRA’s knowledge translation and exchange activities are key to communicating the impact of twin studies to twins and the wider community. Building researcher capability, providing registry resources and partnering with all key stakeholders, particularly the participants, are important for how TRA is advancing twin research to improve health outcomes for society. TRA provides researchers with open access to its vibrant volunteer membership of twins, higher order multiples (multiples) and families who are willing to consider participation in research. Established four decades ago, this resource facilitates and supports research across multiple stages and a breadth of health domains.
The Pennsylvania Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children Twin Registry was developed to capture a representative sample of multiple births and their parents in the state of Pennsylvania. The registry has two main efforts. The first began in 2012 through recruitment of adolescents in Pennsylvania schools. The second effort began in January 2019 in partnership with the Pennsylvania Department of Health to capture the birth cohort of twins born from 2007 to 2017. Study recruitment, sample demographics, focus and measures are provided, as well as future directions.
The aim of the Avera Twin Register (ATR) is to establish a prospective longitudinal repository of twins, multiples, siblings and family members’ biological samples to study environmental and genetic influences on health and disease. Also, it is our intention to contribute to international genome-wide association study (GWAS) twin consortia when appropriate sample size is achieved within the ATR. The ATR is young compared with existing registers and continues to collect a longitudinal repository of biological specimens, survey data and health information. Data and biological specimens were originally collected via face-to-face appointments or the postal department and consisted of paper-informed consents and questionnaires. Enrollment of the ATR began on May 18, 2016 and is located in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, a rural and frontier area in the Central United States with a regional population of approximately 880,000. The original target area for the ATR was South Dakota and the four surrounding states: Minnesota, Iowa, North Dakota and Nebraska. The ATR has found a need to expand that area based on twin and multiple siblings who live in various areas surrounding these states. A description of the state of the ATR today and its transition to online data collection and informed consent will be presented. The ATR collects longitudinal data on lifestyle, including diet and activity levels, aging, plus complex traits and diseases. All twins and multiples participating in the ATR are genotyped on the Illumina Global Screening Array and receive zygosity results.
The National Project on Achievement in Twins (NatPAT) began in 2017 as part of the third funding cycle of the Florida Learning Disabilities Research Center, a program project grant funded by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Development. NatPAT will have a nationally representative sample of elementary school-aged twins in the United States. The overall goal of the project is to uncover salient factors, including genetic and environmental influences, which contribute to the co-development of reading and math performance during the critical developmental period of elementary school. Here we present the specific aims, methods and materials, and future directions of the project.
This review offers an update on research conducted with FinnTwin12 (FT12), the youngest of the three Finnish Twin Cohorts. FT12 was designed as a two-stage study. In the first stage, we conducted multiwave questionnaire research enrolling all eligible twins born in Finland during 1983–1987 along with their biological parents. In stage 2, we intensively studied a subset of these twins with in-school assessments at age 12 and semistructured poly-diagnostic interviews at age 14. At baseline, parents of intensively studied twins were administered the adult version of the interview. Laboratory studies with repeat interviews, neuropsychological tests, and collection of DNA were made of intensively studied twins during follow-up in early adulthood. The basic aim of the FT12 study design was to obtain information on individual, familial and school/neighborhood risks for substance use/abuse prior to the onset of regular tobacco and alcohol use and then track trajectories of use and abuse and their consequences into adulthood. But the longitudinal assessments were not narrowly limited to this basic aim, and with multiwave, multirater assessments from ages 11 to 12, the study has created a richly informative data set for analyses of gene–environment interactions of both candidate genes and genomewide measures with measured risk-relevant environments. Because 25 years have elapsed since the start of the study, we are planning a fifth-wave follow-up assessment.
The Early Growth and Development Study (EGDS) is a prospective adoption study of birth parents, adoptive parents and adopted children (n = 561 adoptees). The original sample has been expanded to include siblings of the EGDS adoptees who were reared by the birth mother and assessed beginning at age 7 years (n = 217 biological children), and additional siblings in both the birth and adoptive family homes, recruited when the adoptees were 8–15 years old (n = 823). The overall study aims are to examine how family, peer and contextual processes affect child and adolescent adjustment, and to examine their interplay (mediation, moderation) with genetic influences. Adoptive and birth parents were originally recruited through adoption agencies located throughout the USA following the birth of a child. Assessments are ongoing and occurred in 9 month’s intervals until the adoptees turned 3 years of age, and in 1 to 2 year intervals thereafter through age 15. Data collection includes the following primary constructs: child temperament, behavior problems, mental health, peer relations, executive functioning, school performance and health; birth and adoptive parent personality characteristics, mental health, health, context, substance use, parenting and marital relations; and the prenatal environment. Findings highlight the power of the adoption design to detect environmental influences on child development and provide evidence of complex interactions and correlations between genetic, prenatal environmental and postnatal environmental influences on a range of child outcomes. The study sample, procedures and an overview of findings are summarized and ongoing assessment activities are described.
TwinsUK is the largest cohort of community-dwelling adult twins in the UK. The registry comprises over 14,000 volunteer twins (14,838 including mixed, single and triplets); it is predominantly female (82%) and middle-aged (mean age 59). In addition, over 1800 parents and siblings of twins are registered volunteers. During the last 27 years, TwinsUK has collected numerous questionnaire responses, physical/cognitive measures and biological measures on over 8500 subjects. Data were collected alongside four comprehensive phenotyping clinical visits to the Department of Twin Research and Genetic Epidemiology, King’s College London. Such collection methods have resulted in very detailed longitudinal clinical, biochemical, behavioral, dietary and socioeconomic cohort characterization; it provides a multidisciplinary platform for the study of complex disease during the adult life course, including the process of healthy aging. The major strength of TwinsUK is the availability of several ‘omic’ technologies for a range of sample types from participants, which includes genomewide scans of single-nucleotide variants, next-generation sequencing, metabolomic profiles, microbiomics, exome sequencing, epigenetic markers, gene expression arrays, RNA sequencing and telomere length measures. TwinsUK facilitates and actively encourages sharing the ‘TwinsUK’ resource with the scientific community — interested researchers may request data via the TwinsUK website (http://twinsuk.ac.uk/resources-for-researchers/access-our-data/) for their own use or future collaboration with the study team. In addition, further cohort data collection is planned via the Wellcome Open Research gateway (https://wellcomeopenresearch.org/gateways). The current article presents an up-to-date report on the application of technological advances, new study procedures in the cohort and future direction of TwinsUK.
The Boston University Twin Project (BUTP) uses a multimethod, longitudinal approach to study the role of genetic and environmental factors on the development of child temperament and related behaviors in early childhood. There are two phases in this project. The first, described in the previous Twin Research and Human Genetics special issue on twin registries, focused on activity level and comprised over 300 twin pairs assessed in the home and laboratory at ages 2 and 3. In this article, we describe subject recruitment, sample characteristics, and study procedures and measures of the second phase of the BUTP. This recent study focuses more broadly on the development of multiple temperament dimensions and explores associations between temperament trajectories, parenting and child adjustment in a new cohort of approximately 300 twin pairs assessed at 3, 4 and 5 years of age.
The German Twin Family Panel (TwinLife) is a German longitudinal study of monozygotic and dizygotic same-sex twin pairs and their families that was designed to investigate the development of social inequalities over the life course. The study covers an observation period from approximately 2014 to 2023. The target population of the sample are reared-together twins of four different age cohorts that were born in 2009/2010 (cohort 1), in 2003/2004 (cohort 2), in 1997/1998 (cohort 3) and between 1990 and 1993 (cohort 4). In the first wave, the study included data on 4097 twin families. Families were recruited in all parts of Germany so that the sample comprises the whole range of the educational, occupational and income structure. As of 2019, two face-to-face, at-home interviews and two telephone interviews have been conducted. Data from the first home and telephone interviews are already available free of charge as a scientific use-file from the GESIS data archive. This report aims to provide an overview of the study sample and design as well as constructs that are unique in TwinLife in comparison with previous twin studies — such as an assessment of cognitive abilities or information based on the children’s medical records and report cards. In addition, major findings based on the data already released are displayed, and future directions of the study are presented and discussed.
The Murcia Twin Registry (MTR) is the only population-based registry in Spain. Created in 2006, the registry has been growing more than a decade to become one of the references for twin research in the Mediterranean region. The MTR database currently comprises 3545 adult participants born between 1940 and 1977. It also holds a recently launched satellite registry of university students (N = 204). Along five waves of data collection, the registry has gathered questionnaire and anthropometric data, as well as biological samples. The MTR keeps its main research focus on health and health-related behaviors from a public health perspective. This includes lifestyle, health promotion, quality of life or environmental conditions. Future short-term development points to the expansion of the biobank and the continuation of the collection of longitudinal data.
The rocky shores of the north-east Atlantic have been long studied. Our focus is from Gibraltar to Norway plus the Azores and Iceland. Phylogeographic processes shape biogeographic patterns of biodiversity. Long-term and broadscale studies have shown the responses of biota to past climate fluctuations and more recent anthropogenic climate change. Inter- and intra-specific species interactions along sharp local environmental gradients shape distributions and community structure and hence ecosystem functioning. Shifts in domination by fucoids in shelter to barnacles/mussels in exposure are mediated by grazing by patellid limpets. Further south fucoids become increasingly rare, with species disappearing or restricted to estuarine refuges, caused by greater desiccation and grazing pressure. Mesoscale processes influence bottom-up nutrient forcing and larval supply, hence affecting species abundance and distribution, and can be proximate factors setting range edges (e.g., the English Channel, the Iberian Peninsula). Impacts of invasive non-native species are reviewed. Knowledge gaps such as the work on rockpools and host–parasite dynamics are also outlined.
The COllaborative project of Development of Anthropometrical measures in Twins (CODATwins) project is a large international collaborative effort to analyze individual-level phenotype data from twins in multiple cohorts from different environments. The main objective is to study factors that modify genetic and environmental variation of height, body mass index (BMI, kg/m2) and size at birth, and additionally to address other research questions such as long-term consequences of birth size. The project started in 2013 and is open to all twin projects in the world having height and weight measures on twins with information on zygosity. Thus far, 54 twin projects from 24 countries have provided individual-level data. The CODATwins database includes 489,981 twin individuals (228,635 complete twin pairs). Since many twin cohorts have collected longitudinal data, there is a total of 1,049,785 height and weight observations. For many cohorts, we also have information on birth weight and length, own smoking behavior and own or parental education. We found that the heritability estimates of height and BMI systematically changed from infancy to old age. Remarkably, only minor differences in the heritability estimates were found across cultural–geographic regions, measurement time and birth cohort for height and BMI. In addition to genetic epidemiological studies, we looked at associations of height and BMI with education, birth weight and smoking status. Within-family analyses examined differences within same-sex and opposite-sex dizygotic twins in birth size and later development. The CODATwins project demonstrates the feasibility and value of international collaboration to address gene-by-exposure interactions that require large sample sizes and address the effects of different exposures across time, geographical regions and socioeconomic status.
The National Academy of Sciences-National Research Council (NAS-NRC) Twin Registry is one of the oldest, national population-based twin registries in the USA. It comprises 15,924 White male twin pairs born in the years 1917–1927 (N = 31.848), both of whom served in the armed forces, chiefly during World War II. This article updates activities in this registry since the most recent report in Twin Research and Human Genetics (Page, 2006). Records-based data include information from enlistment charts and Veterans Administration data linkages. There have been three major epidemiologic questionnaires and an education and earnings survey. Separate data collection efforts with the NAS-NRC registry include the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) subsample, the Duke Twins Study of Memory in Aging and a clinically based study of Parkinson’s disease. Progress has been made on consolidating the various data holdings of the NAS-NRC Twin Registry. Data that had been available through the National Academy of Sciences are now freely available through National Archive of Computerized Data on Aging (NACDA).