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Many Western countries have seen an increase in the volume and importance of external consultants in the public policy process. This book is the first to investigate this phenomenon in a comparative and interdisciplinary way. The analysis shows who these consultants are, how widely and for what reasons they are used in Britain, the United States, Canada, Australia, The Netherlands and Sweden. In doing so, the book addresses the positive and negative implications of high levels of external policy consultancy, including its implications for the nature of the state (transforming into a contractor state?) and for democratically legitimized and accountable decision-making (transforming into consultocracy?). It provides valuable new insights for students and practitioners in the fields of public administration, public policy, public management, political science and human resource management.
Child maltreatment has been associated with various cumulative risk factors. However, little is known about the extent to which genetic and environmental factors contribute to individual differences between parents in perpetrating child maltreatment. To estimate the relative contribution of genetic and environmental factors to perpetrating maltreatment we used a parent-based extended family design. Child-reported perpetrated maltreatment was available for 556 parents (283 women) from 63 families. To explore reporter effects (i.e., child perspective on maltreatment), child reports were compared to multi-informant reports. Based on polygenic model analyses, most of the variance related to the perpetration of physical abuse and emotional neglect was explained by common environmental factors (physical abuse: c2 = 59%, SE = 12%, p = .006; emotional neglect: c2 = 47%, SE = 8%, p < .001) whereas genetic factors did not significantly contribute to the model. For perpetrated emotional abuse, in contrast, genetic factors did significantly contribute to perpetrated emotional abuse (h2 = 33%, SE = 8%, p < .001), whereas common environment factors did not. Multi-informant reports led to similar estimates of genetic and common environmental effects on all measures except for emotional abuse, where a multi-informant approach yielded higher estimates of the common environmental effects. Overall, estimates of unique environment, including measurement error, were lower using multi-informant reports. In conclusion, our findings suggest that genetic pathways play a significant role in perpetrating emotional abuse, while physical abuse and emotional neglect are transmitted primarily through common environmental factors. These findings imply that interventions may need to target different mechanisms dependings on maltreatment type.
Forage maize (Zea mays L.) is often grown year after year on the same land on many intensive dairy farms in north-west Europe. This results in agronomical problems such as weed resistance and decline of soil quality, which may be solved by ley-arable farming. In the current study, forage maize was grown at different nitrogen (N) fertilization levels for 3 years on permanent arable land and on temporary arable land after ploughing out different types of grass–clover swards. Swards differed in management (grazing or cutting) and age (temporary or permanent). Maize yield and soil residual mineral N content were measured after the maize harvest. There was no effect on maize yield of the management of ploughed-out grass–clover swards but a clear effect of the age of grass–clover swards. The N fertilizer replacement value (NFRV) of all ploughed grass–clover swards was >170 kg N/ha in the first year after ploughing. In the third year after ploughing, NFRV of the permanent sward still exceeded 200 kg N/ha, whereas that of the temporary swards decreased to 30 kg N/ha on average. Soil residual nitrate (NO3−) remained below the local, legal threshold of 90 kg NO3− N/ha except for the ploughed-out permanent sward in the third year after ploughing (166 kg NO3− N/ha). The current study highlights the potential of forage maize – ley rotations in saving fertilizer N. This is beneficial both for the environment and for the profitability of dairy production in north-western Europe.
Higher-educated people often have healthier diets, but it is unclear whether specific dietary patterns exist within educational groups. We therefore aimed to derive dietary patterns in the total population and by educational level and to investigate whether these patterns differed in their composition and associations with the incidence of fatal and non-fatal CHD and stroke. Patterns were derived using principal components analysis in 36 418 participants of the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition-Netherlands cohort. Self-reported educational level was used to create three educational groups. Dietary intake was estimated using a validated semi-quantitative FFQ. Hazard ratios were estimated using Cox Proportional Hazard analysis after a mean follow-up of 16 years. In the three educational groups, similar ‘Western’, ‘prudent’ and ‘traditional’ patterns were derived as in the total population. However, with higher educational level a lower population-derived score for the ‘Western’ and ‘traditional’ patterns and a higher score on the ‘prudent’ pattern were observed. These differences in distribution of the factor scores illustrate the association between education and food consumption. After adjustments, no differences in associations between population-derived dietary patterns and the incidence of CHD or stroke were found between the educational groups (Pinteraction between 0·21 and 0·98). In conclusion, although in general population and educational groups-derived dietary patterns did not differ, small differences between educational groups existed in the consumption of food groups in participants considered adherent to the population-derived patterns (Q4). This did not result in different associations with incident CHD or stroke between educational groups.
Objectives: A meta-analysis of the extent, nature and pattern of memory performance in behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia (bvFTD). Multiple observational studies have challenged the relative sparing of memory in bvFTD as stated in the current diagnostic criteria. Methods: We performed a meta-analytic review covering the period 1967 to February 2017 of case-control studies on episodic memory in bvFTD versus control participants (16 studies, 383 patients, 603 control participants), and patients with bvFTD versus those with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) (20 studies, 452 bvFTD, 874 AD). Differences between both verbal and non-verbal working memory, episodic memory learning and recall, and recognition memory were examined. Data were extracted from the papers and combined into a common metric measure of effect, Hedges’ d. Results: Patients with bvFTD show large deficits in memory performance compared to controls (Hedges’ d –1.10; 95% confidence interval [CI] [–1.23, –0.95]), but perform significantly better than patients with AD (Hedges’ d 0.85; 95% CI [0.69, 1.03]). Learning and recall tests differentiate best between patients with bvFTD and AD (p<.01). There is 37–62% overlap in test scores between the two groups. Conclusions: This study points to memory disorders in patients with bvFTD, with performance at an intermediate level between controls and patients with AD. This indicates that, instead of being an exclusion criterion for bvFTD diagnosis, memory deficits should be regarded as a potential integral part of the clinical spectrum. (JINS, 2018, 24, 593–605)
We present 12-month follow-up results for a randomised controlled trial of prolonged exposure and eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing (EMDR) therapy in 85 (78.8%) participants with psychotic disorder and comorbid post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Positive effects on clinician-rated PTSD, self-rated PTSD, depression, paranoid-referential thinking and remission from schizophrenia were maintained up to 12-month follow-up. Negative post-traumatic cognitions declined in prolonged exposure and were stable in EMDR. A significant decline in social functioning was found, whereas reductions in interference of PTSD symptoms with social functioning were maintained. These results support that current PTSD guidelines apply to individuals with psychosis.
Declaration of interest
M.v.d.G. and D.v.d.B. receive income for published books on psychotic disorders and for the training of postdoctoral professionals in the treatment of psychotic disorders. A.d.J. receives income for published books on EMDR therapy and for the training of postdoctoral professionals in this method. A.v.M. receives income for published book chapters on PTSD and for the training of postdoctoral professionals in prolonged exposure. C.d.R. receives income for the training of postdoctoral professionals in EMDR therapy.
The aim of this study was to explore the support needs of Dutch informal caregivers of patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).
Individual semi-structured interviews were conducted with 21 caregivers of ALS patients. Audio-taped interviews were transcribed and data were analyzed thematically.
A total of four global support needs emerged: “more personal time”, “assistance in applying for resources”, “counseling”, and “peer contact”. Despite their needs, caregivers are reluctant to apply for and accept support. They saw their own needs as secondary to the needs of the patients.
Significance of results
ALS seems to lead to an intensive caregiving situation with multiple needs emerging in a short period. This study offers targets for the development of supportive interventions. A proactive approach seems essential, acknowledging the importance of the role of the caregivers in the care process at an early stage, informing them about the risk of burden, monitoring their wellbeing, and repeatedly offering support opportunities. Using e-health may help tailor interventions to the caregivers’ support needs.
Genotype by environment interaction in behavioral traits may be assessed by estimating the proportion of variance that is explained by genetic and environmental influences conditional on a measured moderating variable, such as a known environmental exposure. Behavioral traits of interest are often measured by questionnaires and analyzed as sum scores on the items. However, statistical results on genotype by environment interaction based on sum scores can be biased due to the properties of a scale. This article presents a method that makes it possible to analyze the actually observed (phenotypic) item data rather than a sum score by simultaneously estimating the genetic model and an item response theory (IRT) model. In the proposed model, the estimation of genotype by environment interaction is based on an alternative parametrization that is uniquely identified and therefore to be preferred over standard parametrizations. A simulation study shows good performance of our method compared to analyzing sum scores in terms of bias. Next, we analyzed data of 2,110 12-year-old Dutch twin pairs on mathematical ability. Genetic models were evaluated and genetic and environmental variance components estimated as a function of a family's socio-economic status (SES). Results suggested that common environmental influences are less important in creating individual differences in mathematical ability in families with a high SES than in creating individual differences in mathematical ability in twin pairs with a low or average SES.
A narrow bridge of floating ice that connected the Wilkins Ice Shelf, Antarctica, to two confining islands eventually collapsed in early April 2009. In the month preceding the collapse, we observed deformation of the ice bridge by means of satellite imagery and from an in situ GPS station. TerraSAR-X images (acquired in stripmap mode) were used to compile a time series. The ice bridge bent most strongly in its narrowest part (westerly), while the northern end (near Charcot Island) shifted in a northeasterly direction. In the south, the ice bridge experienced compressive strain parallel to its long axis. GPS position data were acquired a little south of the narrowest part of the ice bridge from 19 January 2009. Analysis of these data showed both cyclic and monotonic components of motion. Meteorological data and re-analysis of the output of weather-prediction models indicated that easterly winds were responsible for the cyclic motion component. In particular, wind stress on the rough ice melange that occupied the area to the east exerted significant pressure on the ice bridge. The collapse of the ice bridge began with crack formation in the southern section parallel to the long axis of the ice bridge and led to shattering of the southern part. Ultimately, the narrowest part, only 900 m wide, ruptured. The formation of many small icebergs released energy of >125 ×106 J.
Multi-decade observing campaigns of the globular clusters 47 Tucanae and M15 have led to an outstanding number of discoveries. Here, we report on the latest results of the long-term observations of the pulsars in these two clusters. For most of the pulsars in 47 Tucanae we have measured, among other things, their higher-order spin period derivatives, which have in turn provided stringent constraints on the physical parameters of the cluster, such as its distance and gravitational potential. For M15, we have studied the relativistic spin precession effect in PSR B2127+11C. We have used full-Stokes observations to model the precession effect, and to constrain the system geometry. We find that the visible beam of the pulsar is swiftly moving away from our line of sight and may very soon become undetectable. On the other hand, we expect to see the opposite emission beam sometime between 2041 and 2053.
This study evaluates the impact of a recent upgrade in the physics package of the regional atmospheric climate model RACMO2 on the simulated surface mass balance (SMB) of the Antarctic ice sheet. The modelled SMB increases, in particular over the grounded ice sheet of East Antarctica (+44 Gt a–1), with a small change in West Antarctica. This mainly results from an increase in precipitation, which is explained by changes in the cloud microphysics, including a new parameterization for ice cloud supersaturation, and changes in large-scale circulation patterns, which alter topographically forced precipitation. The spatial changes in SMB are evaluated using 3234 in situ SMB observations and ice-balance velocities, and the temporal variability using GRACE satellite retrievals. The in situ observations and balance velocities show a clear improvement of the spatial representation of the SMB in the interior of East Antarctica, which has become considerably wetter. No improvements are seen for West Antarctica and the coastal regions. A comparison of model SMB temporal variability with GRACE satellite retrievals shows no significant change in performance.
We consider the minimization of Dirichlet eigenvalues
, of the Laplacian on cuboids of unit measure in
. We prove that any sequence of optimal cuboids in
converges to a cube of unit measure in the sense of Hausdorff as
. We also obtain an upper bound for that rate of convergence.
Supplementation with n-3 fatty acids may improve long-term outcomes of renal transplant recipients (RTR). Recent evidence suggests that EPA and DHA have different outcomes compared with α-linolenic acid (ALA). We examined the prospective associations of EPA–DHA and ALA intakes with graft failure and all-cause mortality in 637 RTR. During 3·1 years (interquartile range 2·7, 3·8) of follow-up, forty-one developed graft failure and sixty-seven died. In age- and sex-adjusted analyses, EPA–DHA and ALA intakes were not associated with graft failure. EPA–DHA intake was not significantly associated with mortality (hazard ratio (HR) 0·79; 95% CI 0·54, 1·15 per 0·1 energy% difference). ALA intake was significantly associated with mortality (HR 1·17; 95% CI 1·04, 1·31 per 0·1 energy% difference). This association remained following adjustments for BMI, proteinuria and intakes of fat, carbohydrate and protein. RTR in the highest tertile of ALA intake exhibited about 2-fold higher mortality risk (HR 2·21; 95% CI 1·23, 3·97) compared with the lowest tertile. In conclusion, ALA intake may be associated with increased mortality in RTR. Future RCT are needed to confirm these results.
This study presents secondary analyses of a recently published trial in which post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) patients with psychosis (n = 108) underwent 8 sessions of trauma-focused treatment, either prolonged exposure (PE) or eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing (EMDR) therapy. 24.1% fulfilled the criteria for the dissociative subtype, a newly introduced PTSD subtype in DSM-5. Treatment outcome was compared for patients with and without the dissociative subtype of PTSD. Patients with the dissociative subtype of PTSD showed large reductions in clinician-administered PTSD scale (CAPS) score, comparable with patients without the dissociative subtype of PTSD. It is concluded that even in a population with severe mental illness, patients with the dissociative subtype of PTSD do benefit from trauma-focused treatments without a pre-phase of emotion regulation skill training and should not be excluded from these treatments.
In patients with psychotic disorders, the effects of psychological post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) treatment on symptoms of psychosis, depression and social functioning are largely unknown
In a single-blind randomized controlled trial (RCT) 155 outpatients in treatment for psychosis (61.3% schizophrenic disorder, 29% schizoaffective disorder) were randomized to eight sessions prolonged exposure (PE; n = 53) or eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) (n = 55), or a waiting-list condition (WL, n = 47) for treatment of their co-morbid PTSD. Measures were performed on (1) psychosis: severity of delusions (PSYRATS-DRS), paranoid thoughts (GPTS), auditory verbal hallucinations (PSYRATS-AHRS), and remission from psychotic disorder (SCI-SR-PANSS); (2) depression (BDI-II); (3) social functioning (PSP). Outcomes were compared at baseline, post-treatment, 6-month follow-up and over all data points.
Both PE and EMDR were significantly associated with less severe paranoid thoughts post-treatment and at 6-month follow-up, and with more patients remitting from schizophrenia, at post-treatment (PE and EMDR) and over time (PE). Moreover, PE was significantly associated with a greater reduction of depression at post-treatment and at 6-month follow-up. Auditory verbal hallucinations and social functioning remained unchanged.
In patients with chronic psychotic disorders PE and EMDR not only reduced PTSD symptoms, but also paranoid thoughts. Importantly, in PE and EMDR more patients accomplished the status of their psychotic disorder in remission. Clinically, these effects are highly relevant and provide empirical support to the notion that delivering PTSD treatment to patients with psychotic disorders and PTSD deserves increasing recognition and acceptance among clinicians.
Fe fortification of centrally manufactured and frequently consumed condiments such as bouillon cubes could help prevent Fe deficiency in developing countries. However, Fe compounds that do not cause sensory changes in the fortified product, such as ferric pyrophosphate (FePP), exhibit low absorption in humans. Tetra sodium pyrophosphate (NaPP) can form soluble complexes with Fe, which could increase Fe bioavailability. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate Fe bioavailability from bouillon cubes fortified with either FePP only, FePP+NaPP, ferrous sulphate (FeSO4) only, or FeSO4+NaPP. We first conducted in vitro studies using a protocol of simulated digestion to assess the dialysable and ionic Fe, and the cellular ferritin response in a Caco-2 cell model. Second, Fe absorption from bouillon prepared from intrinsically labelled cubes (2·5 mg stable Fe isotopes/cube) was assessed in twenty-four Fe-deficient women, by measuring Fe incorporation into erythrocytes 2 weeks after consumption. Fe bioavailability in humans increased by 46 % (P<0·005) when comparing bouillons fortified with FePP only (4·4 %) and bouillons fortified with FePP+NaPP (6·4 %). Fe absorption from bouillons fortified with FeSO4 only and with FeSO4+NaPP was 33·8 and 27·8 %, respectively (NS). The outcome from the human study is in agreement with the dialysable Fe from the in vitro experiments. Our findings suggest that the addition of NaPP could be a promising strategy to increase Fe absorption from FePP-fortified bouillon cubes, and if confirmed by further research, for other fortified foods with complex food matrices as well.
On the basis of a multidisciplinary approach we have unraveled the palaeo-earthquake history of a trenched section across the Peel Boundary Fault. The area shows at present one of the largest contrasts in relative motion on both sides of the fault on the basis of repeated levelling. The geological record for the last 25 thousand years, recovered in the trench, shows evidence of two heavy earthquakes (moment magnitude between 6.0 and 6.6), that occurred in a relatively short timespan around 15 thousands years ago. A third less severe event occurred somewhere in the mid Holocene. The time interval between the two large events is in the order of 1500 years, an interval comparable to that between the last volcanic explosions in the nearby Eifel area. Both records together seem to suggest a relation between large-scale faulting and volcanic activity in the nearby Eifel area, but this interpretation is based on one trench only and should be tested by opening more trenches in the zone that is assumed to be affected by these large events.
The coversands along the Peel Boundary Fault in the Netherlands were investigated by a luminescence dating approach combining Infrared Optically Stimulated Luminescence (IRSL) and Thermoluminescence (TL) methods. At the Neer trench, ten samples were collected and investigated in order to set up an independent chronological framework for the deposition history of the fluvio-aeolian and aeolian sediments and hence the timing of Late Weichselian and Holocene earthquake events. Five sedimentary units could be distinguished by this chronological approach. The oldest fluvio-aeolian unit yielded a mean deposition age of 35.9±0.4 ka and is designated to correlate with the Middle Weichselian. An IRSL age estimate of 20.1 ±2.9 ka was determined for the sediment that most likely represents the Older Coversands I, and a mean luminescence age of 15.1±1.2 ka for deposits just below the Beuningen gravel bed. The aeolian sediment from above the Beuningen horizon yielded an IRSL age estimate of 9.4±1.0 ka. The youngest deposits from the colluvial wedge yielded <6.9±0.7 ka BP, and so an earthquake event was likely to occur during the Middle or Late Holocene, as evidenced by the luminescence age estimates.