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Background Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is among the most common psychiatric disorders of childhood that often persists into adulthood and old age. Yet ADHD is currently underdiagnosed and undertreated in many European countries, leading to chronicity of symptoms and impairment, due to lack of, or ineffective treatment, and higher costs of illness.
Methods The European Network Adult ADHD and the Section for Neurodevelopmental Disorders Across the Lifespan (NDAL) of the European Psychiatric Association (EPA), aim to increase awareness and knowledge of adult ADHD in and outside Europe. This Updated European Consensus Statement aims to support clinicians with research evidence and clinical experience from 63 experts of European and other countries in which ADHD in adults is recognized and treated.
Results Besides reviewing the latest research on prevalence, persistence, genetics and neurobiology of ADHD, three major questions are addressed: (1) What is the clinical picture of ADHD in adults? (2) How should ADHD be properly diagnosed in adults? (3) How should adult ADHDbe effectively treated?
Conclusions ADHD often presents as a lifelong impairing condition. The stigma surrounding ADHD, mainly due to lack of knowledge, increases the suffering of patients. Education on the lifespan perspective, diagnostic assessment, and treatment of ADHD must increase for students of general and mental health, and for psychiatry professionals. Instruments for screening and diagnosis of ADHD in adults are available, as are effective evidence-based treatments for ADHD and its negative outcomes. More research is needed on gender differences, and in older adults with ADHD.
Hill (Twin Research and Human Genetics, Vol. 21, 2018, 84–88) presented a critique of our recently published paper in Cell Reports entitled ‘Large-Scale Cognitive GWAS Meta-Analysis Reveals Tissue-Specific Neural Expression and Potential Nootropic Drug Targets’ (Lam et al., Cell Reports, Vol. 21, 2017, 2597–2613). Specifically, Hill offered several interrelated comments suggesting potential problems with our use of a new analytic method called Multi-Trait Analysis of GWAS (MTAG) (Turley et al., Nature Genetics, Vol. 50, 2018, 229–237). In this brief article, we respond to each of these concerns. Using empirical data, we conclude that our MTAG results do not suffer from ‘inflation in the FDR [false discovery rate]’, as suggested by Hill (Twin Research and Human Genetics, Vol. 21, 2018, 84–88), and are not ‘more relevant to the genetic contributions to education than they are to the genetic contributions to intelligence’.
Our understanding of the complex relationship between schizophrenia symptomatology and etiological factors can be improved by studying brain-based correlates of schizophrenia. Research showed that impairments in value processing and executive functioning, which have been associated with prefrontal brain areas [particularly the medial orbitofrontal cortex (MOFC)], are linked to negative symptoms. Here we tested the hypothesis that MOFC thickness is associated with negative symptom severity.
This study included 1985 individuals with schizophrenia from 17 research groups around the world contributing to the ENIGMA Schizophrenia Working Group. Cortical thickness values were obtained from T1-weighted structural brain scans using FreeSurfer. A meta-analysis across sites was conducted over effect sizes from a model predicting cortical thickness by negative symptom score (harmonized Scale for the Assessment of Negative Symptoms or Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale scores).
Meta-analytical results showed that left, but not right, MOFC thickness was significantly associated with negative symptom severity (βstd = −0.075; p = 0.019) after accounting for age, gender, and site. This effect remained significant (p = 0.036) in a model including overall illness severity. Covarying for duration of illness, age of onset, antipsychotic medication or handedness weakened the association of negative symptoms with left MOFC thickness. As part of a secondary analysis including 10 other prefrontal regions further associations in the left lateral orbitofrontal gyrus and pars opercularis emerged.
Using an unusually large cohort and a meta-analytical approach, our findings point towards a link between prefrontal thinning and negative symptom severity in schizophrenia. This finding provides further insight into the relationship between structural brain abnormalities and negative symptoms in schizophrenia.
The Numeniini is a tribe of 13 wader species (Scolopacidae, Charadriiformes) of which seven are Near Threatened or globally threatened, including two Critically Endangered. To help inform conservation management and policy responses, we present the results of an expert assessment of the threats that members of this taxonomic group face across migratory flyways. Most threats are increasing in intensity, particularly in non-breeding areas, where habitat loss resulting from residential and commercial development, aquaculture, mining, transport, disturbance, problematic invasive species, pollution and climate change were regarded as having the greatest detrimental impact. Fewer threats (mining, disturbance, problematic native species and climate change) were identified as widely affecting breeding areas. Numeniini populations face the greatest number of non-breeding threats in the East Asian-Australasian Flyway, especially those associated with coastal reclamation; related threats were also identified across the Central and Atlantic Americas, and East Atlantic flyways. Threats on the breeding grounds were greatest in Central and Atlantic Americas, East Atlantic and West Asian flyways. Three priority actions were associated with monitoring and research: to monitor breeding population trends (which for species breeding in remote areas may best be achieved through surveys at key non-breeding sites), to deploy tracking technologies to identify migratory connectivity, and to monitor land-cover change across breeding and non-breeding areas. Two priority actions were focused on conservation and policy responses: to identify and effectively protect key non-breeding sites across all flyways (particularly in the East Asian- Australasian Flyway), and to implement successful conservation interventions at a sufficient scale across human-dominated landscapes for species’ recovery to be achieved. If implemented urgently, these measures in combination have the potential to alter the current population declines of many Numeniini species and provide a template for the conservation of other groups of threatened species.
Strategies to dissect phenotypic and genetic heterogeneity of major depressive disorder (MDD) have mainly relied on subphenotypes, such as age at onset (AAO) and recurrence/episodicity. Yet, evidence on whether these subphenotypes are familial or heritable is scarce. The aims of this study are to investigate the familiality of AAO and episode frequency in MDD and to assess the proportion of their variance explained by common single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP heritability).
For investigating familiality, we used 691 families with 2–5 full siblings with recurrent MDD from the DeNt study. We fitted (square root) AAO and episode count in a linear and a negative binomial mixed model, respectively, with family as random effect and adjusting for sex, age and center. The strength of familiality was assessed with intraclass correlation coefficients (ICC). For estimating SNP heritabilities, we used 3468 unrelated MDD cases from the RADIANT and GSK Munich studies. After similarly adjusting for covariates, derived residuals were used with the GREML method in GCTA (genome-wide complex trait analysis) software.
Significant familial clustering was found for both AAO (ICC = 0.28) and episodicity (ICC = 0.07). We calculated from respective ICC estimates the maximal additive heritability of AAO (0.56) and episodicity (0.15). SNP heritability of AAO was 0.17 (p = 0.04); analysis was underpowered for calculating SNP heritability of episodicity.
AAO and episodicity aggregate in families to a moderate and small degree, respectively. AAO is under stronger additive genetic control than episodicity. Larger samples are needed to calculate the SNP heritability of episodicity. The described statistical framework could be useful in future analyses.
We aimed to reparameterize and validate an existing dengue model, comprising an entomological component (CIMSiM) and a disease component (DENSiM) for application in Malaysia. With the model we aimed to measure the effect of importation rate on dengue incidence, and to determine the potential impact of moderate climate change (a 1 °C temperature increase) on dengue activity. Dengue models (comprising CIMSiM and DENSiM) were reparameterized for a simulated Malaysian village of 10 000 people, and validated against monthly dengue case data from the district of Petaling Jaya in the state of Selangor. Simulations were also performed for 2008-2012 for variable virus importation rates (ranging from 1 to 25 per week) and dengue incidence determined. Dengue incidence in the period 2010–2012 was modelled, twice, with observed daily weather and with a 1 °C increase, the latter to simulate moderate climate change. Strong concordance between simulated and observed monthly dengue cases was observed (up to r = 0·72). There was a linear relationship between importation and incidence. However, a doubling of dengue importation did not equate to a doubling of dengue activity. The largest individual dengue outbreak was observed with the lowest dengue importation rate. Moderate climate change resulted in an overall decrease in dengue activity over a 3-year period, linked to high human seroprevalence early on in the simulation. Our results suggest that moderate reductions in importation with control programmes may not reduce the frequency of large outbreaks. Moderate increases in temperature do not necessarily lead to greater dengue incidence.
Alterations of the glucocorticoid system and of hippocampal volumes have consistently been reported in patients with major depressive disorders (MDD). The aim of the present study was to investigate whether the messenger RNA (mRNA) expression of glucocorticoid inducible genes is associated with changes in the cornu ammonis (CA) and dentate gyrus subfields. Forty-three patients with MDD and 43 healthy controls were recruited and investigated with high resolution magnetic resonance imaging. Hippocampal subfields were measured using freesurfer. Measurement of whole blood mRNA expression of glucocorticoid inducible genes serum and glucocorticoid-regulated kinase 1 (SGK1), FK506 binding protein 5 (FKBP5), and glucocorticoid induced leucine zipper (GILZ) was performed. Patients with MDD had significantly smaller volumes of CA1, CA2/3, CA4/DG, and subiculum compared to healthy controls. In the regression analysis, the factor diagnosis had a significant moderating effect on the association of SGK1 and hippocampal volumes. Patients with low expression of SGK1 had significantly smaller CA2/3 and CA4/DG volumes compared to patients with high expression of SGK1 mRNA and to healthy controls with low/high expression of SGK1, respectively. Therefore, a lack of mRNA expression of glucocorticoid inducible genes in patients with MDD that seems to correspond to a blunted cortisol response is associated with smaller hippocampal CA and dentate gyrus volumes. SGK1 seems to be particularly relevant for stress-related mental disorders.
Implantable electronic biomedical devices are used clinically to diagnose and treat an increasing number of medical conditions. Such devices typically employ hermetic packages that often incorporate electrical feedthroughs made with conventional ceramic-to-metal bonding technologies. This sealing technology is well established and provides robust hermetic seals, but is limited in both the number and spacing of electrical leads. Emerging devices for interfacing with the human nervous system, however, will require a large number of external electrical leads implemented in a miniaturized packaging configuration. Commercially available feedthrough technologies are currently incapable of providing external electrical contacts with spacings as small as 200 to 400 microns, and thus are neither compatible with integrated circuit I/O (input/output) pad spacings nor with miniature implantable packages. We report the development of a hermetic high-density feedthrough (HDF) technology that allows for conductive path densities as high as 1,000 per cm2, and that is capable of supporting neural interface devices. The fabrication process utilizes multilayer high temperature co-fired ceramic (HTCC) technology in conjunction with platinum leads. Before co-firing, green alumina substrates are interleaved with linear, parallel Pt trace arrays in either wire or thin foils to form the electrical feedthroughs. Layered stacks of spatially isolated traces are first compacted into a composite, and then fired to achieve densification. After firing, the densified multilayered composite compacts are sliced perpendicular to the Pt traces and lapped to produce multiple feedthrough arrays with a high density of leads (conductors). Both hermeticity and biocompatibility of such implantable feedthroughs are important, as both moisture and positive mobile ion contamination from the saline environment of the human body can lead to compromised performance or catastrophic failure. HDFs fabricated using this process with 100 conductors and lead-to-lead spacings as low as 400 microns have been helium leak tested repeatedly and found to exceed industry-accepted standards with helium leak rates in the range of 10–11 mbar-l/s. The spacing of the current prototype matches industry standard neural interface technology, and can be scaled to higher densities with lead-to-lead spacings as small as 200 microns. The reported HDF process has several distinct advantages over prior approaches, including the provision of a large number of conductive feedthrough leads suitable for flip-chip bonding with sub-mm lead-to-lead spacings (pitch), and the incorporation of materials (alumina and platinum) that are already used in medical implants. The implementation of such an HDF technology allows for significant package miniaturization, allowing greater flexibility in surgical placement as well as less invasive procedures for implantable electronic biomedical devices.
Silicon nanoparticles-based inks were investigated in respect of their suitability for photovoltaic and thermoelectric applications. Nanoparticles with a diameter ranging between 20 to 150 nm were functionalized in order to avoid oxidation as well as having a good stability in suspension. After inkjet-printing and drying, they were annealed up to 1000 °C under nitrogen atmosphere by both rapid thermal and microwave annealing. The influence of the annealing treatment on the structural, electrical, optical and thermal properties was investigated by Raman, SEM, electrical and optical measurements. SEM and Raman demonstrate evolution of the microstructure at temperature as low as 600 °C. Optical, electrical and thermal properties depend strongly on the annealing temperature and tend to exhibit a modification of physical properties above 800 °C when the smallest nanoparticles begin to melt. The annealing method has been identified to be of primary importance on the layer microstructure and its thermal behavior.
Although usually thought of as external environmental stressors, a significant heritable component has been reported for measures of stressful life events (SLEs) in twin studies.
We examined the variance in SLEs captured by common genetic variants from a genome-wide association study (GWAS) of 2578 individuals. Genome-wide complex trait analysis (GCTA) was used to estimate the phenotypic variance tagged by single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). We also performed a GWAS on the number of SLEs, and looked at correlations between siblings.
A significant proportion of variance in SLEs was captured by SNPs (30%, p = 0.04). When events were divided into those considered to be dependent or independent, an equal amount of variance was explained for both. This ‘heritability’ was in part confounded by personality measures of neuroticism and psychoticism. A GWAS for the total number of SLEs revealed one SNP that reached genome-wide significance (p = 4 × 10−8), although this association was not replicated in separate samples. Using available sibling data for 744 individuals, we also found a significant positive correlation of R2 = 0.08 in SLEs (p = 0.03).
These results provide independent validation from molecular data for the heritability of reporting environmental measures, and show that this heritability is in part due to both common variants and the confounding effect of personality.
Integrated Multi-Trophic Aquaculture takes advantage of the mutualism between some detritivorous fish and phytoplankton. The fish recycle nutrients by consuming live (and dead) algae and provide the inorganic carbon to fuel the growth of live algae. In the meanwhile, algae purify the water and generate the oxygen required by fishes. Such mechanism stabilizes the functioning of an artificially recycling ecosystem, as exemplified by combining the euryhaline tilapia Sarotherodon melanotheron heudelotii and the unicellular alga Chlorella sp. Feed addition in this ecosystem results in faster fish growth but also in an increase in phytoplankton biomass, which must be limited. In the prototype described here, the algal population control is exerted by herbivorous zooplankton growing in a separate pond connected in parallel to the fish–algae ecosystem. The zooplankton production is then consumed by tilapia, particularly by the fry and juveniles, when water is returned to the main circuit. Chlorella sp. and Brachionus plicatilis are two planktonic species that have spontaneously colonized the brackish water of the prototype, which was set-up in Senegal along the Atlantic Ocean shoreline. In our system, water was entirely recycled and only evaporation was compensated (1.5% volume/day). Sediment, which accumulated in the zooplankton pond, was the only trophic cul-de-sac. The system was temporarily destabilized following an accidental rotifer invasion in the main circuit. This caused Chlorella disappearance and replacement by opportunist algae, not consumed by Brachionus. Following the entire consumption of the Brachionus population by tilapias, Chlorella predominated again. Our artificial ecosystem combining S. m. heudelotii, Chlorella and B. plicatilis thus appeared to be resilient. This farming system was operated over one year with a fish productivity of 1.85 kg/m2 per year during the cold season (January to April).
A single nucleotide polymorphism rs12807809 located upstream of the neurogranin (NRGN) gene has been identified as a risk variant for schizophrenia in recent genome-wide association studies. To date, there has been little investigation of the endophenotypic consequences of this variant, and our own investigations have suggested that the effects of this gene are not apparent at the level of cognitive function in patients or controls. Because the impact of risk variants may be more apparent at the level of brain, the aim of this investigation was to delineate whether NRGN genotype predicted variability in brain structure and/or function. Healthy individuals participated in structural (N = 140) and/or functional (N = 36) magnetic resonance imaging (s/fMRI). Voxel-based morphometry was used to compare gray and white matter volumes between carriers of the non-risk C allele (i.e., CC/CT) and those who were homozygous for the risk T allele. Functional imaging data were acquired during the performance of a spatial working memory task, and were also analyzed with respect to the difference between C carriers and T homozygotes. There was no effect of the NRGN variant rs12807809 on behavioral performance or brain structure. However, there was a main effect of genotype on brain activity during performance of the working memory task, such that while C carriers exhibited a load-independent decrease in left superior frontal gyrus/BA10, TT individuals failed to show a similar decrease in activity. The failure to disengage this ventromedial prefrontal region, despite preserved performance, may be indicative of a reduction in processing efficiency in healthy TT carriers. Although it remains to be established whether this holds true in larger samples and in patient cohorts, if valid, this suggests a potential mechanism by which NRGN variability might contribute to schizophrenia risk.
An unlinked anonymous survey was conducted to measure the prevalence of selected markers for HIV, hepatitis B and C infection in recruits to the UK Armed Forces to inform future screening and hepatitis B vaccination policies. During 2007, nearly 14 000 left-over samples taken from new recruits for blood typing were collected, unlinked from identifiers and anonymously tested for HIV, hepatitis C and current and past cleared hepatitis B infection. Overall, serological evidence of HIV and hepatitis C was found in 0·06% and 0·06% of recruits, respectively. Evidence of past cleared and current hepatitis B infection was found in 3·63% and 0·37% of recruits, respectively. Overall, prevalence rates were broadly consistent with UK population estimates of infection. However, HIV and hepatitis B prevalence was higher in recruits of African origin than in those from the UK (P<0·0001). Screening for these infections is an option that could be considered for those entering Services from high-prevalence countries.