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The mean episode duration of adolescent major depression is 4 – 9 months among clinically referred youths, recovery rates vary between 35% - 90%, and recurrent episodes are common. In naturalistic studies comprising less selected populations than clinical trials, comorbid psychiatric disorders, poor psychosocial functioning and severity of depression at study entry are among the most consistently reported clinical predictors of less favorable prognosis of youthful depression.
The study aimed at studying the one-year course and at investigating the impact of characteristics of the depressive episode and comorbidity on the one-year outcome of adolescent depression.
A sample of 179 consecutive adolescent (13-19 years) psychiatric outpatients and 17 school-derived matched controls, all with unipolar depressive disorders at baseline, were reinterviewed for DSM-IV Axis I and II disorders at 12 months.
The outpatients had equal recovery rate and episode duration, but shorter time to recurrence than the controls. Fifty percent of the outpatients and 65 % of the depressed controls recovered during the follow-up, 13% of the outpatients and 29% of controls had at least one recurrent depressive episode. Among the outpatients, Axis II comorbidity predicted shorter time to recurrence. Longer time to recovery was predicted by earlier lifetime age of onset for depression, poor psychosocial functioning, depressive disorder diagnosis, and longer episode duration by study entry, with an interaction between episode duration and depressive disorder diagnosis.
Characteristics of depression generally predicted the outcome better than comorbidity. Axis II comorbidity has prognostic value in adolescent depression.
We present studies of polarized cloud emission that are in progress at the
Helsinki University Observatory. Two projects are concerned with FIR/sub-mm
dust polarization, one based on collapse models of protostellar cores, the
other on 3D MHD simulations of larger clouds. We also examine the Zeeman
splitting and the relations between the derived average magnetic field and the
actual field strengths.
We examine the intensity of scattered near-infrared (NIR) light in the case of interstellar clouds illuminated by the normal interstellar radiation field. We have developed a way to convert the observed surface brightness into estimates of the column density and have estimated the accuracy of the new method. The NIR intensities can be converted into reliable estimates of the column density in regions with AV up to almost 20 magnitudes. The errors can be further reduced with detailed radiative transfer modelling and by using the lower resolution information that is provided by the colour excess data of background stars. Therefore, NIR scattered light is a promising new way to map quiescent interstellar clouds at a high, even sub-arcsecond resolution.
Brachyspira (B.) pilosicoli, the causative agent of intestinal spirochaetosis in pigs, is a quite common laboratory finding from faecal samples of weaned and growing pigs in Finland. A better understanding of the epidemiology of B. pilosicoli in and between Finnish pig farms is needed. Altogether 131 B. pilosicoli isolates from 49 Finnish sow herds were studied by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis. MluI was used as a restriction enzyme for all the isolates, and SmaI for 70 isolates. The isolates were divided into 54 different macrorestriction profiles (MRP) by MluI. Most farms had distinct B. pilosicoli genotypes, and common genotypes among herds were rare. B. pilosicoli was re-isolated after 3 years in three herds; the same MRP persisted in each of these herds. A genetic clustering of B. pilosicoli isolates between two major pork production areas was not detected.
Brachyspira pilosicoli and B. innocens were isolated repeatedly from a herd of 60 sows which mostly produced feeder pigs but also raised some fattening pigs. Postweaning diarrhea had been a severe problem in this herd for years. The B. pilosicoli eradication plan was based on the general guidelines for elimination of B. hyodysenteriae, with some modifica-tions. The eradication measures were run in August 1997. In-feed medication with 200p.p.m. tiamulin lasted for 18–30 days, depending on the age group. The piggery unit was emptied, cleaned, disinfected and dried, and all worn surfaces were repaired. The animals were removed to temporary sheds situated 0–100m from the piggery unit. Only the sows and the boar returned to the piggery unit. All other pigs were sold from the sheds within 3 months after the eradication. Immediately after the eradication, the clinical postweaning diarrhea disappeared. The success of the program was monitored four times bacteriologically, and the last control sampling was in December 1999, 7 months after the total withdrawal of antimicrobial feed additives. The primary cultures from the last three samplings were also analysed with B. pilosicoli-specific PCR. All the samples were negative for B. pilosicoli. However, B. innocens could be isolated from each batch of samples. The analysis of B. inno-cens isolates by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis indicated that at least one genotype persisted in the herd. The clinical and laboratory findings suggest that the eradication of B. pilosicoli had succeeded in this herd
Salmonella enterica serovar Infantis is endemic in Finnish cattle. Feed contaminated with
S. Infantis was distributed to cattle farms in May 1995. Following increased sampling, S. Infantis
was detected on 242 farms in 1995. Molecular typing was used to differentiate the farms that
were infected by the feed-related Infantis from those infected by other endemic strains. Twenty-three isolates from feed in 1995 and 413 from cattle (72 from 1992–4, 324 from 1995, 17 from
1996–7) were analysed. The feed-related Infantis was clonally related to the endemic infection
by the ribotype, IS200-type and XbaI-profile. The feed isolates had a distinctive plasmid that
appeared in pulsed-field gel electrophoresis as a 60 kb band when cleaved with XbaI or
linearized by S1-nuclease. This plasmid appeared in cattle only since the outbreak and seemed
stable on the follow-up farms. In addition to contact farms, the feedborne strain was found
on 19% of the farms infected with S. Infantis in 1995 but not having bought suspected
feedstuffs, possibly as secondary infections.
Knowledge of working capacity from adolescence until adulthood among severely disturbed in-patients is scarce.
In a follow-up study of 61 adolescent in-patients, we studied associations between being on a disability pension 20 years after hospitalisation, and the patients' psychopathology and treatment-related factors during the hospitalisation and seven-year follow-up.
Of the former in-patients. 27% had not been on a disability pension, 20% had short-term pension periods, and 53% were pensioned. Subjects whose overall psychosocial functioning had improved and who had not utilised in-patient services until the seven-year follow-up, had a better prognosis in terms of working capacity Half of the subjects who had not been on pension during the follow-up had received a diagnosis of conduct disorder at discharge, and half of those pensioned had a psychotic disorder.
The patients' level of psychosocial functioning and capability to work in young adulthood were associated with long-term prognosis in terms of working capacity Adolescence seems to be the critical time for intensive psychiatric care combined with vocational rehabilitation programmes.