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Subcutaneous adipose tissue (scAT) and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) play a significant role in obesity-associated systemic low-grade inflammation. High-fat diet (HFD) is known to induce inflammatory changes in both scAT and PBMC. However, the time course of the effect of HFD on these systems is still unknown. The aim of the present study was to determine the time course of the effect of HFD on PBMC and scAT. New Zealand white rabbits were fed HFD for 5 or 10 weeks (i.e. HFD-5 and HFD-10) or regular chow (i.e. control (CNT)-5 and CNT-10). Thereafter, metabolic and inflammatory parameters of PBMC and scAT were quantified. HFD induced hyperfattyacidaemia in HFD-5 and HFD-10 groups, with the development of insulin resistance in HFD-10, while no changes were observed in scAT lipid metabolism and inflammatory status. HFD activated the inflammatory pathways in PBMC of HFD-5 group and induced modified autophagy in that of HFD-10. The rate of fat oxidation in PBMC was directly associated with the expression of inflammatory markers and tended to inversely associate with autophagosome formation markers in PBMC. HFD affected systemic substrate metabolism, and the metabolic, inflammatory and autophagy pathways in PBMC in the absence of metabolic and inflammatory changes in scAT. Dietary approaches or interventions to avert HFD-induced changes in PBMC could be essential to prevent metabolic and inflammatory complications of obesity and promote healthier living.
To evaluate whole-genome sequencing (WGS) as a molecular typing tool for MRSA outbreak investigation.
Investigation of MRSA colonization/infection in a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) over 3 years (2014–2017).
Single-center level IV NICU.
NICU infants and healthcare workers (HCWs).
Infants were screened for MRSA using a swab of the anterior nares, axilla, and groin, initially by targeted (ring) screening, and later by universal weekly screening. Clinical cultures were collected as indicated. HCWs were screened once using swabs of the anterior nares. MRSA isolates were typed using WGS with core-genome multilocus sequence typing (cgMLST) analysis and by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE). Colonized and infected infants and HCWs were decolonized. Control strategies included reinforcement of hand hygiene, use of contact precautions, cohorting, enhanced environmental cleaning, and remodeling of the NICU.
We identified 64 MRSA-positive infants: 53 (83%) by screening and 11 (17%) by clinical cultures. Of 85 screened HCWs, 5 (6%) were MRSA positive. WGS of MRSA isolates identified 2 large clusters (WGS groups 1 and 2), 1 small cluster (WGS group 3), and 8 unrelated isolates. PFGE failed to distinguish WGS group 2 and 3 isolates. WGS groups 1 and 2 were codistributed over time. HCW MRSA isolates were primarily in WGS group 1. New infant MRSA cases declined after implementation of the control interventions.
We identified 2 contemporaneous MRSA outbreaks alongside sporadic cases in a NICU. WGS was used to determine strain relatedness at a higher resolution than PFGE and was useful in guiding efforts to control MRSA transmission.
Background: The relationship between timing of direct enteral feeding tube (DET; gastrostomy/jejunostomy) placement and outcomes after stroke is unknown. Methods: We used the Ontario Stroke Registry and linked administrative databases to identify patients with acute stroke between 2003-2013 who received DET during hospital admission. We used multiple logistic regression and Cox proportional hazard models to determine the association between time from admission to DET placement and outcomes of severe disability at discharge (modified Rankin Scale score 4-5) and 30-day mortality after DET placement, adjusting for age, sex, co-morbidities, stroke type, stroke severity, intensive care or stroke unit admission, palliation, and hospital type. Results: 1,342 patients met our inclusion criteria. There was a lower hazard of 30-day mortality for each week in delay to DET placement (adjusted HR 0.89, 95%CI 0.80 to 0.99), but higher odds of severe disability (adjusted OR 1.36, 95%CI 1.14 to 1.62). Patients with DET placement within 1 week had the highest 30-day mortality compared to subsequent weeks (adjusted HR 1.59, 95%CI 1.05 to 2.4). Conclusions: Delayed DET placement after stroke is associated with lower 30-day mortality but greater disability. Thirty-day mortality was highest in those who received DET within 1 week of admission. These associations may inform decisions regarding timing of DET placement after stroke.
Background: Dysphagia is a common and devastating complication after acute stroke. Percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy (PEG) tubes are often placed for persistent dysphagia. However, little is known regarding outcomes after PEG tube placement. Methods: We used a 10-year Ontario Stroke Registry to shed light on the clinical outcomes of patients with PEG tube insertion after ischemic stroke or intracranial hemorrhage compared to patients with only NG tubes, including rate of pneumonia, disability, and mortality. Results: Using propensity score matching, 1,793 patients were successfully matched and had similar baseline characteristics. Compared with NG, patients with PEG had a higher rate of pneumonia (32.6% vs. 20.6%; RR 1.59), higher disability at discharge (modified Rankin Scale Score 3-5; 74.0% vs. 65.4%; RR 1.13), and higher rate of long-term care placement (27.1% vs. 9.3%; RR 2.9). >From stroke onset, there was a lower rate of death in patients with PEG compared to NG at 30 days (15.3% vs. 34.3%; RR 0.45) but no difference at 2 years (52.8% vs. 53.5%; RR 0.99, p=0.71). *All significant p <0.0001. Conclusions: In conclusion, PEG tube placement after stroke may prolong survival in patients with poor outcomes. Our study provides a framework for discussions between physicians, patients, and families with regards to expected prognosis after PEG tube placement.
Background: In patients with acute stroke, nasogastric (NG) tubes are commonly inserted for feeding when dysphagia is identified, and percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy (PEG) tubes are placed for severe or persistent dysphagia. However, little is known regarding predictors of PEG insertion. Methods: We used the Ontario stroke registry from 2003-2013 to identify baseline characteristics of all patients with NG or PEG tube insertion after stroke. We used multiple logistic regression with backwards selection to determine variables that were independent predictors of PEG tube insertion during admission. Results: 4002 patients with NG and 1903 patients with PEG were included in the analysis. Independent predictors of PEG were: Age (80+ vs. <60; odds ratio [OR] 1.70), past history of stroke (OR 1.17), higher stroke severity (severe vs. mild stroke; OR 1.37), stroke unit admission (OR 1.46), and dysphagia screening (OR 1.52). Factors associated with reduced odds of PEG insertion were: Prior history of peptic ulcer disease (OR 0.70), prior independence (OR 0.78), dementia (OR 0.76), palliative status (OR 0.49), and thrombolysis (OR 0.66). *All p<0.01 Conclusions: The strongest predictors of PEG were older age, higher stroke severity, stroke unit admission and dysphagia screening. Patients with dementia had reduced odds of PEG. Thrombolysis also reduced odds of PEG and may be protective.
Previous studies have investigated the association between dietary inflammatory potential and the development of cancer. For breast cancer the results have been equivocal. The present study aimed to investigate whether higher Dietary Inflammatory IndexTM (DII) scores were associated with increased risk of breast cancer among Chinese women. A total of 867 cases and 824 controls were recruited into the present case–control study from September 2011 to February 2016. DII scores were computed based on baseline dietary intake assessed by a validated 81-item FFQ. The OR and 95 % CI were assessed by multivariable logistic regression after adjusting for various potential confounders. DII scores in this study ranged from −5·87 (most anti-inflammatory score) to +5·71 (most proinflammatory score). A higher DII score was associated with a higher breast cancer risk (adjusted ORquartile 4 v. 1 2·28; 95 % CI 1·71, 3·03; adjusted ORcontinuous 1·40; 95 %CI 1·25, 1·39). In stratified analyses, positive associations also were observed except for underweight women or women with either oestrogen receptor+ or progesterone receptor+ status (but not both). Results from this study indicated that higher DII scores, corresponding to more proinflammatory diets, were positively associated with breast cancer risk among Chinese women.
The middle ear and mastoid are complex three-dimensional structures and therefore tympanomastoid procedures require detailed documentation. Traditional written accounts can be inaccurate and difficult to interpret.
This audit of 95 patients compares the completion of essential operative details using: an all-electronic version of a standardised proforma with a diagrammatic template, a non-electronic version with a diagrammatic template, and a traditional handwritten template.
The electronic template resulted in 81 per cent of essential operative items being recorded, compared to 78 per cent (p = 0.3) with a previous non-electronic template and 50 per cent (p = 0.0004) when using simple handwritten recording.
An electronic proforma with a diagrammatic template improves the documentation and interpretation of tympanomastoid procedures compared to traditional handwritten records.
This paper presents the first major data release and survey description for the ANU WiFeS SuperNovA Programme. ANU WiFeS SuperNovA Programme is an ongoing supernova spectroscopy campaign utilising the Wide Field Spectrograph on the Australian National University 2.3-m telescope. The first and primary data release of this programme (AWSNAP-DR1) releases 357 spectra of 175 unique objects collected over 82 equivalent full nights of observing from 2012 July to 2015 August. These spectra have been made publicly available via the WISEREP supernova spectroscopy repository.
We analyse the ANU WiFeS SuperNovA Programme sample of Type Ia supernova spectra, including measurements of narrow sodium absorption features afforded by the high spectral resolution of the Wide Field Spectrograph instrument. In some cases, we were able to use the integral-field nature of the Wide Field Spectrograph instrument to measure the rotation velocity of the SN host galaxy near the SN location in order to obtain precision sodium absorption velocities. We also present an extensive time series of SN 2012dn, including a near-nebular spectrum which both confirms its ‘super-Chandrasekhar’ status and enables measurement of the sub-solar host metallicity at the SN site.
The fast stellar winds can blow bubbles in the circumstellar material ejected from previous phases of stellar evolution. These are found at different scales, from planetary nebulae (PNe) around stars evolving to the white dwarf stage, to Wolf-Rayet (WR) bubbles and up to large-scale bubbles around massive star clusters. In all cases, the fast stellar wind is shock-heated and a hot bubble is produced. Processes of mass evaporation and mixing of nebular material and heat conduction occurring at the mixing layer between the hot bubble and the optical nebula are key to determine the thermal structure of these bubbles and their evolution. In this contribution we review our current understanding of the X-ray observations of hot bubbles in PNe and present the first spatially-resolved study of a mixing layer in a PN.
Twenty Small Tailed Han (STH) and 20 Ujumqin (UJU) ewes naturally infected with gastrointestinal nematodes were randomly assigned to one of four treatments arranged in a 2 × 2 factorial design, receiving anthelmintic treatment (AT) or non-anthelmintic treatment (NonAT) prior to lambing. After lambing, the effects of AT on feed intake, digestion and milk yield in ewes, and the growth rates of lambs fed their mother's milk were assessed for 28 days. Faecal samples were collected to determine faecal egg counts (FECs), milk was collected to measure milk yield and ewes and lambs were weighed to quantify daily body weight change. The results showed that AT significantly increased ewe dry matter intake (2411 g/d for AT and 2209 g/d for NonAT) and decreased FECs (50 eggs/g for AT and 2655 eggs/g for NonAT). All ewes lost weight after lambing, but body weight loss in the AT (43 g/d) was significantly less than in NonAT (84 g/d), and STH ewes (70 g/d) lost more weight than UJU ewes (58 g/d). Anthelmintic-treated ewes produced more milk for their lambs to consume. However, the extent of these positive effects of AT differed between STH and UJU ewes. The average daily body weight gain of lambs in AT was higher than those in NonAT. In conclusion, effective AT in ewes before lambing benefits subsequent lactation in ewes and growth rate in lambs.
Background: Dysphagia is a devastating complication of stroke and can lead to malnutrition, immobility, aspiration pneumonia, and death. Guidelines advocate screening all patients with acute stroke for swallowing impairment. However, previous research suggests only 60% are screened, and it is unclear what factors contribute to receiving dysphagia screening. Methods: We used the Ontario Stroke Registry to identify patients who were admitted to Regional Stroke Centres from 2010-2013. We used multivariable regression to identify predictors of receiving a dysphagia screen within 72 hours. Results: Among 7172 patients with acute ischemic stroke, 1705 patients (23.8%) did not undergo screening. Factors increasing the odds of being tested were: Stroke unit admission (adjusted odds ratio aOR 6.5), presenting with speech deficits (aOR 1.9) or weakness (aOR 1.5), or receiving thrombolysis (aOR 1.9). Seizure (aOR 0.49) and mild stroke (aOR 0.59 vs moderate stroke) decreased the odds of being tested. Among those with mild strokes who received a swallowing screen, 33% failed. *All p<0.0001. Conclusions: Patients with mild stroke are at risk of not being screened for dysphagia, despite a significant fail rate among those tested. This may expose untested patients to a higher risk of complications from dysphagia, and suggests a gap in process of care that should be addressed.
Background: Bedside dysphagia screening is recommended for all patients with acute ischemic stroke, in order to detect swallowing impairment early and prevent complications. However, limited data are available on outcomes associated with failing a dysphagia screen. Methods: We used the Ontario Stroke Registry to identify patients who were admitted to Regional Stroke Centres from 2010-2013 and received a dysphagia screen within 72 hours. We used multivariable regression to determine outcomes of patients who failed the dysphagia screen. Results: Among 5145 patients who underwent dysphagia screening, 2458 (47.8%) failed and 2687 (52.2%) passed. Patients who failed had more co-morbidities and presented with more severe strokes (mean NIHSS 11.0 vs. 5.4). Among those who failed, 9% required permanent feeding tubes, versus 0.1% among those who passed. After controlling for age, co-morbidities, and stroke severity, failing a bedside swallowing screen remained highly predictive of poor outcomes, including decubitus ulcer (adjusted odds ratio aOR 10.5), pneumonia (aOR 4.6), discharge to long-term care (aOR 4.1) and 30-day mortality (aOR 4.5; 16.6% vs. 2.2%). *All p <0.0001 Conclusions: Patients who failed a dysphagia screen on admission had dramatically worse outcomes after controlling for baseline factors. A bedside dysphagia screen provides immediate risk stratification for acute stroke patients and can be used to guide appropriate care.
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is associated with elevated risk for metabolic syndrome (MetS). However, the direction of this association is not yet established, as most prior studies employed cross-sectional designs. The primary goal of this study was to evaluate bidirectional associations between PTSD and MetS using a longitudinal design.
A total of 1355 male and female veterans of the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan underwent PTSD diagnostic assessments and their biometric profiles pertaining to MetS were extracted from the electronic medical record at two time points (spanning ~2.5 years, n = 971 at time 2).
The prevalence of MetS among veterans with PTSD was just under 40% at both time points and was significantly greater than that for veterans without PTSD; the prevalence of MetS among those with PTSD was also elevated relative to age-matched population estimates. Cross-lagged panel models revealed that PTSD severity predicted subsequent increases in MetS severity (β = 0.08, p = 0.002), after controlling for initial MetS severity, but MetS did not predict later PTSD symptoms. Logistic regression results suggested that for every 10 PTSD symptoms endorsed at time 1, the odds of a subsequent MetS diagnosis increased by 56%.
Results highlight the substantial cardiometabolic concerns of young veterans with PTSD and raise the possibility that PTSD may predispose individuals to accelerated aging, in part, manifested clinically as MetS. This demonstrates the need to identify those with PTSD at greatest risk for MetS and to develop interventions that improve both conditions.
Altered microbial communities are thought to play an important role in eosinophilic oesophagitis, an allergic inflammatory condition of the oesophagus. Identification of the majority of organisms present in human-associated microbial communities is feasible with the advent of high throughput sequencing technology. However, these data consist of non-negative, highly skewed sequence counts with a large proportion of zeros. In addition, hierarchical study designs are often performed with repeated measurements or multiple samples collected from the same subject, thus requiring approaches to account for within-subject variation, yet only a small number of microbiota studies have applied hierarchical regression models. In this paper, we describe and illustrate the use of a hierarchical regression-based approach to evaluate multiple factors for a small number of organisms individually. More specifically, the zero-inflated negative binomial mixed model with random effects in both the count and zero-inflated parts is applied to evaluate associations with disease state while adjusting for potential confounders for two organisms of interest from a study of human microbiota sequence data in oesophagitis.
Orthocoelium streptocoelium is a common paramphistome species parasitizing the rumen and/or reticulum of small ruminants, leading to significant losses. This study first determined the complete mitochondrial (mt) genome of O. streptocoelium. The complete mt genome of O. streptocoelium was amplified, sequenced, assembled, analysed and then compared with those of other digeneans. The entire mt genome of O. streptocoelium is 13,800 bp in length, which is smaller than those of other digeneans except for Opisthorchis viverrini. This mt genome contains 12 protein-coding genes, 22 transfer RNA genes, two ribosomal RNA genes and two non-coding regions. The arrangement of the O. streptocoelium mt genome is the same as those of other digeneans except for Schistosoma haematobium and Schistosoma spindale. Phylogenetic analyses based on concatenated amino acid sequences of the 12 protein-coding genes representing 16 digeneans were conducted to assess the relationship of O. streptocoelium with other digeneans. The result indicated that O. streptocoelium is closely related to Paramphistomum cervi and Fischoederius elongates, which is in accordance with their relationships by taxonomy. This complete mt genome of O. streptocoelium enriched the mitochondrial genome data of paramphistomes and provided important molecular markers for diagnostics and studies of population variation, epidemiology, ecology and evolution of O. streptocoelium and other digeneans.
Most influenza virus infections are associated with mild disease. One approach to estimate the occurrence of influenza virus infections in individuals is via repeated measurement of humoral antibody titres. We used baseline and convalescent antibody titres measured by haemagglutination inhibition (HI) and viral neutralization (VN) assays against influenza A(H1N1), A(H3N2) and B viruses to investigate the characteristics of antibody rises following virologically confirmed influenza virus infections in participants in a community-based study. Multivariate models were fitted in a Bayesian framework to characterize the distribution of changes in antibody titres following influenza A virus infections. In 122 participants with PCR-confirmed influenza A virus infection, homologous antibody titres rose by geometric means of 1·2- to 10·2-fold after infection with A(H1N1), A(H3N2) and A(H1N1)pdm09. Significant cross-reactions were observed between A(H1N1)pdm09 and seasonal A(H1N1). Antibody titre rises for some subtypes and assays varied by age, receipt of oseltamivir treatment, and recent receipt of influenza vaccination. In conclusion, we provided a quantitative description of the mean and variation in rises in influenza virus antibody titres following influenza virus infection. The multivariate patterns in boosting of antibody titres following influenza virus infection could be taken into account to improve estimates of cumulative incidence of infection in seroepidemiological studies.
The first observations by a worldwide network of advanced interferometric gravitational wave detectors offer a unique opportunity for the astronomical community. At design sensitivity, these facilities will be able to detect coalescing binary neutron stars to distances approaching 400 Mpc, and neutron star–black hole systems to 1 Gpc. Both of these sources are associated with gamma-ray bursts which are known to emit across the entire electromagnetic spectrum. Gravitational wave detections provide the opportunity for ‘multi-messenger’ observations, combining gravitational wave with electromagnetic, cosmic ray, or neutrino observations. This review provides an overview of how Australian astronomical facilities and collaborations with the gravitational wave community can contribute to this new era of discovery, via contemporaneous follow-up observations from the radio to the optical and high energy. We discuss some of the frontier discoveries that will be made possible when this new window to the Universe is opened.
The work was intended to explore the effect of the widely available cationic polymer polyethylenimine (PEI) on small diameter poly(ɛ-caprolactone) (PCL) blood vessel grafts. PEI was blended with PCL and electrospun into nanofibrous vascular scaffolds. The morphologies, wettabilities, mechanical properties, and biological activities of the PCL/PEI electrospun nanofibers were investigated. It was found that by increasing the content of PEI to 5% within the scaffolds, the fiber diameters decreased from 469.7 ± 212.1 to 282.5 ± 107.1 nm, the water contact angle was reduced from 126.6 ± 1.1° to 27.6 ± 3.9°, while the Young's modulus increased from 2.0 ± 0.2 to 4.1 ± 0.1 MPa, the suture retention strength increased from 4.2 ± 0.4 to 6.1 ± 0.7 N, and the burst pressure increased from 801.2 ± 14.1 to 926.2 ± 22.8 mmHg. The in vitro evaluations demonstrated that the nanofibers containing 2% PEI promoted the attachment and proliferation of human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs).
The robust spines and sclerites of the early to middle Cambrian ‘mollusc’ Wiwaxia are ubiquitous in suitably preserved deposits, but are strikingly absent from the Chengjiang Lagerstätte (Cambrian Stage 3, Yunnan Province, SW China). Here we provide the first record of Wiwaxia sclerites from this rich deposit, extending the record of the genus to the earliest Cambrian Series 2. This reinforces the cosmopolitan distribution of this iconic Cambrian lophotrochozoan and demonstrates the strong faunal continuity that unites distant Cambrian Lagerstätten.