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Patients with major depressive disorder (MDD) display cognitive deficits in acutely depressed and remitted states. Childhood maltreatment is associated with cognitive dysfunction in adults, but its impact on cognition and treatment related cognitive outcomes in adult MDD has received little consideration. We investigate whether, compared to patients without maltreatment and healthy participants, adult MDD patients with childhood maltreatment display greater cognitive deficits in acute depression, lower treatment-associated cognitive improvements, and lower cognitive performance in remission.
Healthy and acutely depressed MDD participants were enrolled in a multi-center MDD predictive marker discovery trial. MDD participants received 16 weeks of standardized antidepressant treatment. Maltreatment and cognition were assessed with the Childhood Experience of Care and Abuse interview and the CNS Vital Signs battery, respectively. Cognitive scores and change from baseline to week 16 were compared amongst MDD participants with (DM+, n = 93) and without maltreatment (DM−, n = 90), and healthy participants with (HM+, n = 22) and without maltreatment (HM−, n = 80). Separate analyses in MDD participants who remitted were conducted.
DM+ had lower baseline global cognition, processing speed, and memory v. HM−, with no significant baseline differences amongst DM−, HM+, and HM− groups. There were no significant between-group differences in cognitive change over 16 weeks. Post-treatment remitted DM+, but not remitted DM−, scored significantly lower than HM− in working memory and processing speed.
Childhood maltreatment was associated with cognitive deficits in depressed and remitted adults with MDD. Maltreatment may be a risk factor for more severe and persistent cognitive deficits in adult MDD.
The design of government portfolios – that is, the distribution of competencies among government ministries and office holders – has been largely ignored in the study of executive and coalition politics. This article argues that portfolio design is a substantively and theoretically relevant phenomenon that has major implications for the study of institutional design and coalition politics. The authors use comparative data on portfolio design reforms in nine Western European countries since the 1970s to demonstrate how the design of government portfolios changes over time. Specifically, they show that portfolios are changed frequently (on average about once a year) and that such shifts are more likely after changes in the prime ministership or the party composition of the government. These findings suggest a political logic behind these reforms based on the preferences and power of political parties and politicians. They have major implications for the study of institutional design and coalition politics.
Consumption of sugar sweetened beverages (SSBs) in infants and young children are less explored in Asian populations. The Growing in Singapore Towards healthy Outcomes (GUSTO) cohort study examined associations between SSB intakes at ages 18 months and 5 years with adiposity measures at age 6 years. We studied Singaporean infants/children with SSB intake assessed by food frequency questionnaires (FFQ) at ages 18 months (n=555) and 5 years (n=767). The median (interquartile range) for SSB intakes is 28(5.5-98) ml at age 18 months and 111 (57-198) ml at age 5 years. Associations between SSB intakes (100 ml/day increments and tertile categories) and adiposity measures (BMI standard deviation scores (s.d. unit), sum of skinfolds (SSFs)) and overweight/obesity status were examined using multivariable linear and Poisson regression models, respectively. After adjusting for confounders and additionally for energy intake, SSB intakes at age 18 months were not significantly associated with later adiposity measures and overweight/obesity outcomes. In contrast, at age 5 years, SSB intakes when modelled as 100ml/day increments were associated with higher BMI by 0.09 (95% CI: 0.02, 0.16) s.d. unit, higher SSF thickness by 0.68 (0.06, 1.44) mm, and increased risk for overweight/obesity by 1.2 times (1.07, 1.23) at age 6 years. Trends were consistent with SSB intakes modelled as categorical tertiles. In summary, SSB intake in young childhood is associated with higher risks of adiposity and risk for overweight/obesity. Public health policies working to reduce SSB consumption need to focus on prevention programs targeted at young children.
Leishmania rely heavily on glycans to complete their digenetic life cycle in both mammalian and phlebotomine sand fly hosts. Leishmania promastigotes secrete a proteophosphoglycan-rich gel (Promastigote Secretory Gel, PSG) that is regurgitated during transmission and can exacerbate infection in the skin. Here we explored the role of PSG from natural Leishmania-sand fly vector combinations by obtaining PSG from Leishmania (L.) major-infected Phlebotomus (P.) papatasi and P. duboscqi and L. tropica-infected P. arabicus. We found that, in addition to the vector's saliva, the PSG from L. major and L. tropica potently exacerbated cutaneous infection in BALB/c mice, improved the probability of developing a patent cutaneous lesion, parasite growth and the evolution of the lesion. Of note, the presence of PSG in the inoculum more than halved the prepatent period of cutaneous L. tropica infection from an average of 32 weeks to 13 weeks. In addition, L. major and L. tropica PSG extracted from the permissive experimental vector, Lutzomyia (Lu.) longipalpis, also exacerbated infections in mice. These results reinforce and extend the hypothesis that PSG is an important and evolutionarily conserved component of Leishmania infection that can be used to facilitate experimental infection for drug and vaccine screening.
Early life adversity (ELA) has been associated with inflammation and immunosenescence, as well as hyporeactivity of the HPA axis. Because the immune system and the HPA axis are tightly intertwined around the glucocorticoid receptor (GR), we examined peripheral GR functionality in the EpiPath cohort among participants who either had been exposed to ELA (separation from parents and/or institutionalization followed by adoption; n = 40) or had been reared by their biological parents (n = 72).
Expression of the strict GR target genes FKBP5 and GILZ as well as total and 1F and 1H GR transcripts were similar between groups. Furthermore, there were no differences in GR sensitivity, examined by the effects of dexamethasone on IL6 production in LPS-stimulated whole blood. Although we did not find differences in methylation at the GR 1F exon or promoter region, we identified a region of the GR 1H promoter (CpG 1-9) that showed lower methylation levels in ELA.
Our results suggest that peripheral GR signaling was unperturbed in our cohort and the observed immune phenotype does not appear to be secondary to an altered GR response to the perturbed HPA axis and glucocorticoid (GC) profile, although we are limited in our measures of GR activity and time points.
This is a copy of the slides presented at the meeting but not formally written up for the volume.
Description: Semiconductor physics contains a rich body of theory and working designs. However, their material properties seem to be reaching their limits. Perovskite oxides on the other hand have abundant physical properties, but are still under active investigation. The advent of RHEED-monitoring of pulsed laser deposition allows for the fabrication of structures with single unit cell (4 Å) thick layers. In this way we may be able to fabricate quantum well structures for both applications and fundamental investigations. Superlattices of the Mott insulator LaTiO3 (LTO) and the band gap insulator SrTiO3 (STO) form such a structure. The superlattices are metallic, both as-grown and post-annealed . This has been attributed to the existence of metallic states at the interfaces between LTO and STO . At these interfaces the electron density is found to extend about 10 Å into the STO. However, theoretically, the required length scale for quantum confinement is of the order of 4 Å. A possible way to increase this confinement is to use a buffer material with a larger band gap than that of LTO (similar to semiconductor band gap engineering) and/or with a lower dielectric constant . LaAlO3 (LAO) is such a material (ΔELAO = 5.6 eV vs. ΔESTO = 3.2 eV, εLAO = 24 vs. εSTO = 300). Here we report on the growth of LTO/LAO superlattices on STO substrates. As-grown superlattices of LTO/LAO are metallic, while post-annealing turns them insulating. This may be explained from a disorder-order transition in a 2D Mott-Hubbard model . XPS and EELS measurements of the titanium valence show interesting differences for LTO layers close to and far away from the sample surface. The former, for thin LAO capping layers, show the presence of Ti4+ while the latter only have Ti3+. Hard XPS of samples with varying capping layer thickness shows an exponential dependence of the Ti3+ contents on a length scale of about 5 unit cells.  A. Ohtomo et al., Nature 419, 378-380 (2002).  S. Okamoto & A.J. Millis, Phys. Rev. B 70, 075101 (2004).  D. Heidarian & N. Trivedi, Phys. Rev. Lett. 93, 126401 (2004).
Healthcare workers (HCWs) are at risk of acquiring and transmitting respiratory viruses while working in healthcare settings.
To investigate the incidence of and factors associated with HCWs working during an acute respiratory illness (ARI).
HCWs from 9 Canadian hospitals were prospectively enrolled in active surveillance for ARI during the 2010–2011 to 2013–2014 influenza seasons. Daily illness diaries during ARI episodes collected information on symptoms and work attendance.
At least 1 ARI episode was reported by 50.4% of participants each study season. Overall, 94.6% of ill individuals reported working at least 1 day while symptomatic, resulting in an estimated 1.9 days of working while symptomatic and 0.5 days of absence during an ARI per participant season. In multivariable analysis, the adjusted relative risk of working while symptomatic was higher for physicians and lower for nurses relative to other HCWs. Participants were more likely to work if symptoms were less severe and on the illness onset date compared to subsequent days. The most cited reason for working while symptomatic was that symptoms were mild and the HCW felt well enough to work (67%). Participants were more likely to state that they could not afford to stay home if they did not have paid sick leave and were younger.
HCWs worked during most episodes of ARI, most often because their symptoms were mild. Further data are needed to understand how best to balance the costs and risks of absenteeism versus those associated with working while ill.
This article focuses on chemical retailers Jack and Charles Colbert to, first, show the externalization processes linked to the greening of U.S. industry through stricter consumer and environmental protection regulations and, second, illustrate the limitations of nationally framed environmentalism targeting businesses in a global market. Throughout the 1970s and 1980s, the Colberts traded chemicals that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency had banned for use in the United States. They exported them legally to countries where the material was still a permitted commodity—primarily in the global South. Rare interview material illustrates how the exporters justified their unequal business deals by misappropriating the meaning of recycling.
The potential of energy-dispersive X-ray fluorescence spectrometry for analysis of refractory metals and WC-based hard metals is investigated. Both, photon excitation by filtered tube radiation and by the characteristic, lines of a secondary target are employed. Both excitation systems give good results. If the counting times are adjusted to account for the lower sensitivity of energy dispersive as opposed to wavelength dispersive X-ray spectrometry the detection limit and precision data are comparable. The multielement analyses of interest in these applications that comprise an energy range of 5 keV or more are better handled by direct excitation with filtered tube radiations than either by secondary target excitation or by wavelength dispersive X-ray spectrometry.