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The Rapid ASKAP Continuum Survey (RACS) is the first large-area survey to be conducted with the full 36-antenna Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder (ASKAP) telescope. RACS will provide a shallow model of the ASKAP sky that will aid the calibration of future deep ASKAP surveys. RACS will cover the whole sky visible from the ASKAP site in Western Australia and will cover the full ASKAP band of 700–1800 MHz. The RACS images are generally deeper than the existing NRAO VLA Sky Survey and Sydney University Molonglo Sky Survey radio surveys and have better spatial resolution. All RACS survey products will be public, including radio images (with
15 arcsec resolution) and catalogues of about three million source components with spectral index and polarisation information. In this paper, we present a description of the RACS survey and the first data release of 903 images covering the sky south of declination
made over a 288-MHz band centred at 887.5 MHz.
The emphasis on team science in clinical and translational research increases the importance of collaborative biostatisticians (CBs) in healthcare. Adequate training and development of CBs ensure appropriate conduct of robust and meaningful research and, therefore, should be considered as a high-priority focus for biostatistics groups. Comprehensive training enhances clinical and translational research by facilitating more productive and efficient collaborations. While many graduate programs in Biostatistics and Epidemiology include training in research collaboration, it is often limited in scope and duration. Therefore, additional training is often required once a CB is hired into a full-time position. This article presents a comprehensive CB training strategy that can be adapted to any collaborative biostatistics group. This strategy follows a roadmap of the biostatistics collaboration process, which is also presented. A TIE approach (Teach the necessary skills, monitor the Implementation of these skills, and Evaluate the proficiency of these skills) was developed to support the adoption of key principles. The training strategy also incorporates a “train the trainer” approach to enable CBs who have successfully completed training to train new staff or faculty.
The ‘sick-quitter’ hypothesis states that mental disorders associated with alcohol abstinence are accounted for by people who stop consuming alcohol because of poor health.
We investigated the association between alcohol abstinence and symptoms of common mental disorder and personality disorder, distinguishing between lifelong abstinence and abstinence following previous consumption.
Analyses were based on the British National Survey of Psychiatric Morbidity 2000, which sampled 8580 residents aged 16 to 74 years. Heavy consumers of alcohol were excluded, using the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test Questionnaire. Symptoms of common mental disorder (depression/anxiety) were identified by the Clinical Interview Schedule. The screening questionnaire of the Structured Clinical Interview for Axis II Personality Disorders was used to identify potential personality disorder. Self-reported alcohol abstinence was divided into lifelong abstinence and previous consumption. Previous consumers were asked why they had stopped. Covariates included socioeconomic status, social activity and general health status.
After adjustment, alcohol abstinence was associated with both common mental disorder symptoms and any personality disorder, but only for previous consumers (respective odds ratios 1.70 (1.23-2.34) and 1.45 (1.09-1.94)). Associations were non-specific, being apparent for most individual mental disorder symptoms and personality disorder categories. More detailed analysis indicated that associations were limited to previous consumers who reported ceasing alcohol consumption for health reasons.
The results were consistent with the ‘sick-quitter’ hypothesis and should be taken into account when interpreting associations between moderate alcohol consumption and beneficial health outcomes.
Lipids appear to mediate depressive vulnerability in the elderly, however, sex differences and genetic vulnerability have not been taken into account in previous prospective studies.
Depression was assessed in a population of 1040 women and 752 men aged 65 years and over at baseline and after 7-year follow-up. Clinical level of depression (DEP) was defined as having either a score of 16 and above on the Centre for Epidemiology Studies Depression scale or a diagnosis of current major depression on the Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview. Lipid levels, apolipoprotein E and serotonin transporter linked promoter region (5-HTTLPR) genotypes were evaluated at baseline.
Multivariate analyses adjusted by socio-demographic and behavioral variables, measures of physical health including ischemic pathologies, and genetic vulnerability indicated gender-specific associations between dyslipidemia and DEP, independent of the use of lipid lowering agents or apolipoprotein E status. Men with low LDL-cholesterol levels had twice the risk of prevalent and incident DEP whereas in women low HDL-cholesterol levels were found to be significantly associated with increased prevalent DEP (OR = 1.5) only. A significant interaction was observed between low LDL-cholesterol and 5-HTTLPR genotype, men with s/s or s/l genotype being at increased risk of DEP (OR = 6.0 and 2.7, respectively). No significant gene-environment interaction was observed for women.
DEP is associated with higher atherogenic risk in women (low HDL-cholesterol), whereas the reverse is observed in men (low LDL-cholesterol). Late-life depression may have a complex gender-specific etiology involving genetic vulnerability in men.
The symptoms of bipolar disorder are sometimes misrecognised for unipolar depression and inappropriately treated with antidepressants. This may be associated with increased risk of developing mania. However, the extent to which this depends on what type of antidepressant is prescribed remains unclear.
To investigate the association between different classes of antidepressants and subsequent onset of mania/bipolar disorder in a real-world clinical setting.
Data on prior antidepressant therapy were extracted from 21,012 adults with unipolar depression receiving care from the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust (SLaM). multivariable Cox regression analysis (with age and gender as covariates) was used to investigate the association of antidepressant therapy with risk of developing mania/bipolar disorder.
In total, 91,110 person-years of follow-up data were analysed (mean follow-up: 4.3 years). The overall incidence rate of mania/bipolar disorder was 10.9 per 1000 person-years. The peak incidence of mania/bipolar disorder was seen in patients aged between 26 and 35 years (12.3 per 1000 person-years). The most frequently prescribed antidepressants were SSRIs (35.5%), mirtazapine (9.4%), venlafaxine (5.6%) and TCAs (4.7%). Prior antidepressant treatment was associated with an increased incidence of mania/bipolar disorder ranging from 13.1 to 19.1 per 1000 person-years. Multivariable analysis indicated a significant association with SSRIs (hazard ratio 1.34, 95% CI 1.18–1.52) and venlafaxine (1.35, 1.07–1.70).
In people with unipolar depression, antidepressant treatment is associated with an increased risk of subsequent mania/bipolar disorder. These findings highlight the importance of considering risk factors for mania when treating people with depression.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
Mood instability is an important problem but has received relatively little research attention. Natural language processing (NLP) is a novel method, which can used to automatically extract clinical data from electronic health records (EHRs).
To extract mood instability data from EHRs and investigate its impact on people with mental health disorders.
Data on mood instability were extracted using NLP from 27,704 adults receiving care from the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust (SLaM) for affective, personality or psychotic disorders. These data were used to investigate the association of mood instability with different mental disorders and with hospitalisation and treatment outcomes.
Mood instability was documented in 12.1% of people included in the study. It was most frequently documented in people with bipolar disorder (22.6%), but was also common in personality disorder (17.8%) and schizophrenia (15.5%). It was associated with a greater number of days spent in hospital (B coefficient 18.5, 95% CI 12.1–24.8), greater frequency of hospitalisation (incidence rate ratio 1.95, 1.75–2.17), and an increased likelihood of prescription of antipsychotics (2.03, 1.75–2.35).
Using NLP, it was possible to identify mood instability in a large number of people, which would otherwise not have been possible by manually reading clinical records. Mood instability occurs in a wide range of mental disorders. It is generally associated with poor clinical outcomes. These findings suggest that clinicians should screen for mood instability across all common mental health disorders. The data also highlight the utility of NLP for clinical research.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
There are often substantial delays before diagnosis and initiation of treatment in people bipolar disorder. Increased delays are a source of considerable morbidity among affected individuals.
To investigate the factors associated with delays to diagnosis and treatment in people with bipolar disorder.
Retrospective cohort study using electronic health record data from the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust (SLaM) from 1364 adults diagnosed with bipolar disorder. The following predictor variables were analysed in a multivariable Cox regression analysis on diagnostic delay and treatment delay from first presentation to SLaM: age, gender, ethnicity, compulsory admission to hospital under the UK Mental Health Act, marital status and other diagnoses prior to bipolar disorder.
The median diagnostic delay was 62 days (interquartile range: 17–243) and median treatment delay was 31 days (4–122). Compulsory hospital admission was associated with a significant reduction in both diagnostic delay (hazard ratio 2.58, 95% CI 2.18–3.06) and treatment delay (4.40, 3.63–5.62). Prior diagnoses of other psychiatric disorders were associated with increased diagnostic delay, particularly alcohol (0.48, 0.33–0.41) and substance misuse disorders (0.44, 0.31–0.61). Prior diagnosis of schizophrenia and psychotic depression were associated with reduced treatment delay.
Some individuals experience a significant delay in diagnosis and treatment of bipolar disorder, particularly those with alcohol/substance misuse disorders. These findings highlight a need to better identify the symptoms of bipolar disorder and offer appropriate treatment sooner in order to facilitate improved clinical outcomes. This may include the development of specialist early intervention services.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
Public health monitoring is commonly undertaken in social media but has never been combined with data analysis from electronic health records. This study aimed to investigate the relationship between the emergence of novel psychoactive substances (NPS) in social media and their appearance in a large mental health database.
Insufficient numbers of mentions of other NPS in case records meant that the study focused on mephedrone. Data were extracted on the number of mephedrone (i) references in the clinical record at the South London and Maudsley NHS Trust, London, UK, (ii) mentions in Twitter, (iii) related searches in Google and (iv) visits in Wikipedia. The characteristics of current mephedrone users in the clinical record were also established.
Increased activity related to mephedrone searches in Google and visits in Wikipedia preceded a peak in mephedrone-related references in the clinical record followed by a spike in the other 3 data sources in early 2010, when mephedrone was assigned a ‘class B’ status. Features of current mephedrone users widely matched those from community studies.
Combined analysis of information from social media and data from mental health records may assist public health and clinical surveillance for certain substance-related events of interest. There exists potential for early warning systems for health-care practitioners.
The field of human rights is not static. It evolves in response to newly identified needs as well as clearer perceptions of recognised needs. Much of the discussion in this volume explores the fresh articulation of new substantive rights, the identification of new ‘rights-bearers’, and the creation of new mechanisms for rights protection.
Little research exists on how partners of sex offenders are perceived. Using attachment theory, we hypothesised that one's attachment would generalise to perceptions of sexual offenders and their partners. One hundred and six British adults’ attachment styles were assessed, as well as perceptions of sex offenders and their partners. Generally, perceivers’ attachment avoidance was associated with positive perceptions of both partners and offenders, while attachment anxiety was associated with negative perceptions of partners but positive perceptions of sex offenders. Perceptions of sex offenders and their partners were highly correlated and negative in nature, and sex offenders were more negatively perceived.
A theoretically based relationship for the Darcy–Weisbach friction factor
for rough-bed open-channel flows is derived and discussed. The derivation procedure is based on the double averaging (in time and space) of the Navier–Stokes equation followed by repeated integration across the flow. The obtained relationship explicitly shows that the friction factor can be split into at least five additive components, due to: (i) viscous stress; (ii) turbulent stress; (iii) dispersive stress (which in turn can be subdivided into two parts, due to bed roughness and secondary currents); (iv) flow unsteadiness and non-uniformity; and (v) spatial heterogeneity of fluid stresses in a bed-parallel plane. These constitutive components account for the roughness geometry effect and highlight the significance of the turbulent and dispersive stresses in the near-bed region where their values are largest. To explore the potential of the proposed relationship, an extensive data set has been assembled by employing specially designed large-eddy simulations and laboratory experiments for a wide range of Reynolds numbers. Flows over self-affine rough boundaries, which are representative of natural and man-made surfaces, are considered. The data analysis focuses on the effects of roughness geometry (i.e. spectral slope in the bed elevation spectra), relative submergence of roughness elements and flow and roughness Reynolds numbers, all of which are found to be substantial. It is revealed that at sufficiently high Reynolds numbers the roughness-induced and secondary-currents-induced dispersive stresses may play significant roles in generating bed friction, complementing the dominant turbulent stress contribution.
We conducted a systematic review of randomised controlled trials (RCT) of increased intake of arachidonic acid (ARA) on fatty acid status and health outcomes in humans. We identified twenty-two articles from fourteen RCT. Most studies were conducted in adults. These used between 80 and 2000 mg ARA per d and were of 1–12 weeks duration. Supplementation with ARA doses as low as 80 mg/d increased the content of ARA in different blood fractions. Overall there seem to be few marked benefits for adults of increasing ARA intake from the typical usual intake of 100–200 mg/d to as much as 1000 mg/d; the few studies using higher doses (1500 or 2000 mg/d) also report little benefit. However, there may be an impact of ARA on cognitive and muscle function which could be particularly relevant in the ageing population. The studies reviewed here suggest no adverse effects in adults of increased ARA intake up to at least 1000–1500 mg/d on blood lipids, platelet aggregation and blood clotting, immune function, inflammation or urinary excretion of ARA metabolites. However, in many areas there are insufficient studies to make firm conclusions, and higher intakes of ARA are deserving of further study. Based on the RCT reviewed, there are not enough data to make any recommendations for specific health effects of ARA intake.
Under current Australian industry pre-slaughter guidelines, lambs may be off feed for up to 48 h before slaughter. The purpose of this study was to examine what proportion of circulating metabolites at slaughter are due to stress and feed deprivation and if this response differs between Merino and Terminal genotypes. In addition the effect of feed deprivation on carcass weight and meat quality was examined. Jugular blood samples were collected from 88 Merino and Terminal sired lambs at rest and at slaughter following 24, 36 and 48 h of feed deprivation and plasma analysed for glucose, lactate, non-esterified fatty acids (NEFA) and β-hydroxybutyrate (BHOB). From the same carcasses hot carcass weight (HCWT) were measured as well as a suite of meat quality traits measured such as M. longissimus lumborum (loin) and M. semitendinosus pH at 24 h postmortem. Loin samples were also analysed for intramuscular fat content and Warner–Bratzer Shear Force. Merino sired lambs had a higher NEFA response compared to Terminal sired lambs at slaughter after 24, 36 and 48 h of feed deprivation, with NEFA levels up to 35% higher than previously reported in the same animals at rest in animal house conditions, whereas BHOB response to feed deprivation was not affected by sire type (P>0.05) and similar to previously reported at rest. In addition to the metabolic effects, increasing feed deprivation from 36 h was associated with a 3% reduction in HCWT and dressing percentage as well as causing increased ultimate pH in the M. semitendinosus in Merino sired lambs. Findings from this study demonstrate that Merino and Terminal sired lambs differ in their metabolic response to feed deprivation under commercial slaughter conditions. In addition, commercial feed deprivation appears to have a negative effect on ultimate pH and carcass weight and warrants further investigation.
The aim of this study was to examine the metabolic response to feed deprivation up to 48 h in low and high yielding lamb genotypes. It was hypothesised that Terminal sired lambs would have decreased plasma glucose and increased plasma non-esterified fatty acids (NEFA) and β-hydroxybutyrate (BHOB) concentrations in response to feed deprivation compared to Merino sired lambs. In addition, it was hypothesised that the metabolic changes due to feed deprivation would also be greater in progeny of sires with breeding values for greater growth, muscling and leanness. Eighty nine lambs (45 ewes, 44 wethers) from Merino dams with Merino or Terminal sires with a range in Australian Sheep Breeding Values (ASBVs) for post-weaning weight (PWT), post-weaning eye muscle depth and post-weaning fat depth (PFAT) were used in this experiment. Blood samples were collected via jugular cannulas every 6 h from time 0 to 48 h of feed deprivation for the determination of plasma glucose, NEFA, BHOB and lactate concentration. From 12 to 48 h of feed deprivation plasma glucose concentration decreased (P < 0.05) by 25% from 4.04 ± 0.032 mmol/l to 3.04 ± 0.032 mmol/l. From 6 h NEFA concentration increased (P < 0.05) from 0.15 ± 0.021 mmol/l by almost 10-fold to 1.34 ± 0.021 mmol/l at 48 h of feed deprivation. Feed deprivation also influenced BHOB concentrations and from 12 to 48 h it increased (P < 0.05) from 0.15 ± 0.010 mmol/l to 0.52 ± 0.010 mmol/l. Merino sired lambs had a 8% greater reduction in glucose and 29% and 10% higher NEFA and BHOB response, respectively, compared to Terminal sired lambs (P < 0.05). In Merino sired lambs, increasing PWT was also associated with an increase in glucose and decline in NEFA and BHOB concentration (P < 0.05). In Terminal sired lambs, increasing PFAT was associated with an increase in glucose and decline in NEFA concentration (P < 0.05). Contrary to the hypothesis, Merino sired lambs showed the greatest metabolic response to fasting especially in regards to fat metabolism.
Life span bias potentially alters species abundance in death assemblages through the overrepresentation of short-lived organisms compared with their long-lived counterparts. Although previous work found that life span bias did not contribute significantly to live–dead discordance in bivalve assemblages, life span bias better explained discordance in two groups: longer-lived bivalve species and species with known life spans. More studies using local, rather than global, species-wide life spans and mortality rates would help to determine the prevalence of life span bias, especially for long-lived species with known life spans. Here, we conducted a field study at two sites in North Carolina to assess potential life span bias between Mercenaria mercenaria and Chione elevata, two long-lived bivalve species that can be aged directly. We compared the ability of directly measured local life spans with that of regional and global life spans to predict live–dead discordance between these two species. The shorter-lived species (C. elevata) was overrepresented in the death assemblage compared with its live abundance, and local life span data largely predicted the amount of live–dead discordance; local life spans predicted 43% to 88% of discordance. Furthermore, the global maximum life span for M. mercenaria resulted in substantial overpredictions of discordance (1.4 to 1.6 times the observed live–dead discordance). The results of this study suggest that life span bias should be considered as a factor affecting proportional abundances of species in death assemblages and that using life span estimates appropriate to the study locality improves predictions of discordance based on life span compared with using global life span estimates.
The choice of animal-based traits to identify and deal with production diseases is often a challenge for pig farmers, researchers and other related professionals. This systematic review focused on production diseases, that is, the diseases that arise from management practices, affecting the digestive, locomotory and respiratory system of pigs. The aim was to classify all traits that have been measured and conduct a meta-analysis to quantify the impact of diseases on these traits so that these can be used as indicators for intervention. Data were extracted from 67 peer-reviewed publications selected from 2339 records. Traits were classified as productive (performance and carcass composition), behavioural, biochemical and molecular traits. A meta-analysis based on mixed models was performed on traits assessed more than five times across studies, using the package metafor of the R software. A total of 524 unique traits were recorded 1 to 31 times in a variety of sample material including blood, muscle, articular cartilage, bone or at the level of whole animal. No behavioural traits were recorded from the included experiments. Only 14 traits were measured on more than five occasions across studies. Traits within the biochemical, molecular and productive trait groups were reported most frequently in the published literature and were most affected by production diseases; among these were some cytokines (interleukin (IL) 1-β, IL6, IL8 and tumour necrosis factor-α), acute phase proteins (haptoglobin) and daily weight gain. Quantification of the influence of factors relating to animal characteristics or husbandry practices was not possible, due to the low frequency of reporting throughout the literature. To conclude, this study has permitted a holistic assessment of traits measured in the published literature to study production diseases occurring in various stages of the production cycle of pigs. It shows the lack of consensus and common measurements of traits to characterise production diseases within the scientific literature. Specific traits, most of them relating to performance characteristics or immunological response of pigs, are proposed for further study as potential tools for the prognosis and study of production diseases.