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The Murcia Twin Registry (MTR) is the only population-based registry in Spain. Created in 2006, the registry has been growing more than a decade to become one of the references for twin research in the Mediterranean region. The MTR database currently comprises 3545 adult participants born between 1940 and 1977. It also holds a recently launched satellite registry of university students (N = 204). Along five waves of data collection, the registry has gathered questionnaire and anthropometric data, as well as biological samples. The MTR keeps its main research focus on health and health-related behaviors from a public health perspective. This includes lifestyle, health promotion, quality of life or environmental conditions. Future short-term development points to the expansion of the biobank and the continuation of the collection of longitudinal data.
The aim of the study was to determine the main factors (sociodemographic, anthropometric, lifestyle and health status) associated with high Na excretion in a representative population of Chile.
Na excretion (g/d), a valid marker of Na intake, was determined by urine analysis and Tanaka’s formulas. Blood pressure was measured by trained staff and derived from the mean of three readings recorded after 15 min rest. The associations of Na excretion with blood pressure and the primary correlates of high Na excretion were determined using logistic regression.
Chileans aged ≥15 years.
Participants (n 2913) from the Chilean National Health Survey 2009–2010.
Individuals aged 25 years or over, those who were obese and those who had hypertension, diabetes or metabolic syndrome were more likely to have higher Na excretion. The odds for hypertension increased by 10·2 % per 0·4 g/d increment in Na excretion (OR=1·10; 95 % CI 1·06, 1·14; P < 0·0001). These findings were independent of major confounding factors.
Age, sex, adiposity, sitting behaviours and existing co-morbidities such as diabetes were associated with higher Na excretion levels in the Chilean population. These findings could help policy makers to implement public health strategies tailored towards individuals who are more likely to consume high levels of dietary salt.
Hydrogels made of sodium 2-acrylamide-2-methypropanesulfonate were synthesized with the goal of creating a polymer for tissue engineering applications. The hydrogels were doped with silver nanoparticles to create hydrogel/Ag with possible antibacterial properties. We varied the weight/volume percentage of Laponite from 3 to 10 w/v% to alter the rheological properties of the hydrogels. Raman spectroscopy was used to study the progress of the chemical reaction at different polymerization times under ultraviolet radiation. By comparing the changes in the intensities of the Raman bands corresponding to C=C and C–C bonds with reaction time, we found that the optimal polymerization time to obtain chains of poly(2-acrylamide-2-methylpropanesulfonate) was 3 to 4 h. Characterization of the hydrogels with scanning electron microscopy indicated pore sizes of 1 to 6 µm.
Composites from carbon nanotubes and polymers have been synthesized and studied. The composites were obtained joining carbon nanotubes with polymethyl methacrylate, nylon-6 and polystyrene. The materials were observed through scanning electron microscopy to evaluate the carbon nanotubes dispersion in the polymeric matrices. FTIR and Raman spectroscopies were used to analyze the interactions among functionalized and non-functionalized multiwalled carbon nanotubes and polymers, demonstrating affinity and peculiar spectra behaviors for each composite with different carbon nanotubes loads.
The Antarctic Roadmap Challenges (ARC) project identified critical requirements to deliver high priority Antarctic research in the 21st century. The ARC project addressed the challenges of enabling technologies, facilitating access, providing logistics and infrastructure, and capitalizing on international co-operation. Technological requirements include: i) innovative automated in situ observing systems, sensors and interoperable platforms (including power demands), ii) realistic and holistic numerical models, iii) enhanced remote sensing and sensors, iv) expanded sample collection and retrieval technologies, and v) greater cyber-infrastructure to process ‘big data’ collection, transmission and analyses while promoting data accessibility. These technologies must be widely available, performance and reliability must be improved and technologies used elsewhere must be applied to the Antarctic. Considerable Antarctic research is field-based, making access to vital geographical targets essential. Future research will require continent- and ocean-wide environmentally responsible access to coastal and interior Antarctica and the Southern Ocean. Year-round access is indispensable. The cost of future Antarctic science is great but there are opportunities for all to participate commensurate with national resources, expertise and interests. The scope of future Antarctic research will necessitate enhanced and inventive interdisciplinary and international collaborations. The full promise of Antarctic science will only be realized if nations act together.
The objective of this study was to assess the effectiveness of a catheter-related bloodstream infection (CR BSI) reduction programme and healthcare workers' compliance with recommendations. A 3-year surveillance programme of CR BSIs in all hospital settings was implemented. As part of the programme, there was a direct observation of insertion and maintenance of central venous catheters (CVCs) to determine performance. A total of 38 education courses were held over the study period and feedback reports with the results of surveillance and recommendations were delivered to healthcare workers every 6 months. A total of 6722 short-term CVCs were inserted in 4982 patients for 58 763 catheter-days. Improvements of compliance with hand hygiene was verified at the insertion (87·1–100%, P < 0·001) and maintenance (51·1–72·1%, P = 0·029) of CVCs; and the use of chlorhexidine for skin disinfection was implemented at insertion (35·7–65·4%, P < 0·001) and maintenance (33·3–45·9%, P < 0·197) of CVCs. There were 266 CR BSI incidents recorded with an annual incidence density of 5·75/1000 catheter-days in the first year, 4·38 in the second year [rate ratio (RR) 0·76, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0·57–1·01] and 3·46 in the third year (RR 0·60, 95% CI 0·44–0·81). The education programme clearly improved compliance with recommendations for CVC handling, and was effective in reducing the burden of CR BSIs.
Few randomised clinical trials have examined the efficacy of an
intervention aimed at improving psychosocial functioning in bipolar
To examine changes in psychosocial functioning in a group that has been
enrolled in a functional remediation programme 1 year after baseline.
This was a multicentre, randomised, rater-masked clinical trial comparing
three patient groups: functional remediation, psychoeducation and
treatment as usual over 1-year follow-up. The primary outcome was change
in psychosocial functioning measured by means of the Functioning
Assessment Short Test (FAST). Group×time effects for overall psychosocial
functioning were examined using repeated-measures ANOVA (trial
There was a significant group×time interaction for overall psychosocial
functioning, favouring patients in the functional remediation group
(F = 3.071, d.f. = 2, P =
Improvement in psychosocial functioning is maintained after 1-year
follow-up in patients with bipolar disorder receiving functional
For optimal application of Nesidiocoris tenuis as a biological control agent, adequate field management and programmed mass rearing are essential. Mathematical models are useful tools for predicting the temperature-dependent developmental rate of the predator. In this study, the linear model and nonlinear models Logan type III, Lactin and Brière were estimated at constant temperatures and validated at alternating temperatures and under field conditions. N. tenuis achieved complete development from egg to adult at constant temperatures between 15 and 35°C with high survivorship (>80%) in the range 18–32°C. The total developmental time decreased from a maximum at 15°C (76.74 d) to a minimum at 33°C (12.67 d) and after that, increased to 35°C (13.98 d). Linear and nonlinear developmental models all had high accuracy (Ra2 >0.86). The maximum developmental rate was obtained between 31.9°C (Logan type III and Brière model for N1) and 35.6°C (for the egg stage in the Brière model). Optimal survival and the highest developmental rate fell within the range 27–30°C. The field validation revealed that the Logan type III and Lactin models offered the best predictions (95.0 and 94.5%, respectively). The data obtained on developmental time and mortality at different temperatures are useful for mass rearing this predator, and the developmental models are valuable for using N. tenuis as a biological control agent.
Functional remediation is a novel intervention with demonstrated efficacy at improving functional outcome in euthymic bipolar patients. However, in a previous trial no significant changes in neurocognitive measures were detected. The objective of the present analysis was to test the efficacy of this therapy in the enhancement of neuropsychological functions in a subgroup of neurocognitively impaired bipolar patients.
A total of 188 out of 239 DSM-IV euthymic bipolar patients performing below two standard deviations from the mean of normative data in any neurocognitive test were included in this subanalysis. Repeated-measures analyses of variance were conducted to assess the impact of the treatment arms [functional remediation, psychoeducation, or treatment as usual (TAU)] on participants’ neurocognitive and functional outcomes in the subgroup of neurocognitively impaired patients.
Patients receiving functional remediation (n = 56) showed an improvement on delayed free recall when compared with the TAU (n = 63) and psychoeducation (n = 69) groups as shown by the group × time interaction at 6-month follow-up [F2,158 = 3.37, degrees of freedom (df) = 2, p = 0.037]. However, Tukey post-hoc analyses revealed that functional remediation was only superior when compared with TAU (p = 0.04), but not with psychoeducation (p = 0.10). Finally, the patients in the functional remediation group also benefited from the treatment in terms of functional outcome (F2,158 = 4.26, df = 2, p = 0.016).
Functional remediation is effective at improving verbal memory and psychosocial functioning in a sample of neurocognitively impaired bipolar patients at 6-month follow-up. Neurocognitive enhancement may be one of the active ingredients of this novel intervention, and, specifically, verbal memory appears to be the most sensitive function that improves with functional remediation.
This retrospective study aimed to evaluate the effective closure rate for spontaneous cerebrospinal fluid leaks with functional endoscopic sinus surgery and identify patient characteristics that may be associated with a need for additional therapy.
A retrospective analysis of patients with spontaneous cerebrospinal fluid leaks was performed. Data on the nature of presentation, patient body mass index, defect location and size, intracranial pressure, clinical follow up, and complications were collected.
Twenty-five patients had spontaneous cerebrospinal fluid leaks with evidence of idiopathic intracranial hypertension. The most common sites were the cribriform plate, followed by the ethmoid roof and sphenoid lateral pterygoid recess. All patients underwent endonasal endoscopic surgery to repair the defect. Post-operatively, all patients underwent lumbar drainage and acetazolamide therapy.
Spontaneous cerebrospinal fluid leaks represent a surgical challenge because of their high recurrence rates. The most important factor for obtaining a successful repair in these patients is reducing their intracranial pressure through nutritional, medical or surgical means.
The effects of thermal treatments on the thermoluminescent (TL) signal of NaCl (ACS reagent) induced by gamma radiation were investigated. Samples of NaCl were thermally treated at 500, 800 and 1000 °C and characterized by X-Ray diffraction and scanning electron microscopy. After their exposure 0.1 to 150 Gy of gamma radiation from a gamma-ray source of 60Co, a TL curve for each temperature of treatment was obtained. We observed a different TL behavior on the irradiated samples as a function of the temperature applied during the thermal treatments. For the sample treated at 500 °C, three peaks centered at 102, 133 and 228 °C were observed. Samples treated at 800 and 1000 °C showed two main peaks at 128 and 220 °C and 136 and 219 °C, respectively; however, the highest TL intensity signal was observed for the sample at 800 °C. All samples showed a linear dependency of the integrated TL intensity from the signal emitted as function of the irradiation time. This is an important advantage because NaCl could be applied as a very low cost thermoluminescent dosimetric material. A comparison between the TL signal induced by gamma radiation in pure and Eu doped NaCl is also reported.
The kinetic performance of metallocene type catalysts as well as their instantaneous activity is determined on line by two independent methods in the semi-batch polymerization of ethylene via metallocenes. On the basis of first-principles, both methods are described and guidelines for their implementation at a laboratory scale reactor are offered. Polymerization tests were conducted with two heterogenized metallocene catalysts showing that the direct method (based on ethylene flow measurement) and also the calorimetric method (based on energy balances) reported equivalent high quality information. The calorimetric method here developed can be readily used by the chemical practitioner as the notions and tools required for its implantation are easily grasped. It is noted that the calorimetric method has the advantage of requiring a low cost instrumentation (only thermocouples) whereas the direct method needs a relatively more sophisticated equipment (mass flow meter).
Two in vitro and one in vivo experiments were conducted to investigate the effects of a selection of plant compounds on rumen fermentation, microbial concentration and methane emissions in goats. Treatments were: control (no additive), carvacrol (CAR), cinnamaldehyde (CIN), eugenol (EUG), propyl propane thiosulfinate (PTS), propyl propane thiosulfonate (PTSO), diallyl disulfide (DDS), a mixture (40 : 60) of PTS and PTSO (PTS+PTSO), and bromochloromethane (BCM) as positive control with proven antimethanogenic effectiveness. Four doses (40, 80, 160 and 320 µl/l) of the different compounds were incubated in vitro for 24 h in diluted rumen fluid from goats using two diets differing in starch and protein source within the concentrate (Experiment 1).The total gas production was linearly decreased (P<0.012) by all compounds, with the exception of EUG and PTS+PTSO (P⩾0.366). Total volatile fatty-acid (VFA) concentration decreased (P⩽0.018) only with PTS, PTSO and CAR, whereas the acetate:propionate ratio decreased (P⩽0.002) with PTS, PTSO and BCM, and a tendency (P=0.064) was observed for DDS. On the basis of results from Experiment 1, two doses of PTS, CAR, CIN, BCM (160 and 320 µl/l), PTSO (40 and 160 µl/l) and DDS (80 and 320 µl/l) were further tested in vitro for 72 h (Experiment 2). The gas production kinetics were affected (P⩽0.045) by all compounds, and digested NDF (DNDF) after 72 h of incubation was only linearly decreased (P⩽0.004) by CAR and PTS. The addition of all compounds linearly decreased (P⩽0.009) methane production, although the greatest reductions were observed for PTS (up to 96%), DDS (62%) and BCM (95%). No diet–dose interaction was observed. To further test the results obtained in vitro, two groups of 16 adult non-pregnant goats were used to study in vivo the effect of adding PTS (50, 100 and 200 mg/l rumen content per day) and BCM (50, 100 and 160 mg/l rumen content per day) during the 9 days on methane emissions (Experiment 3). The addition of PTS and BCM resulted in linear reductions (33% and 64%, respectively, P⩽0.002) of methane production per unit of dry matter intake, which were lower than the maximum inhibition observed in vitro (87% and 96%, respectively). We conclude that applying the same doses in vivo as in vitro resulted in a proportional lower extent of methane decrease, and that PTS at 200 mg/l rumen content per day has the potential to reduce methane emissions in goats. Whether the reduction in methane emission observed in vivo persists over longer periods of treatments and improves feed conversion efficiency requires further research.
To examine the association of breakfast consumption with objectively measured and self-reported physical activity, sedentary time and physical fitness.
The HELENA (Healthy Lifestyle in Europe by Nutrition in Adolescence) Cross-Sectional Study. Breakfast consumption was assessed by two non-consecutive 24 h recalls and by a ‘Food Choices and Preferences’ questionnaire. Physical activity, sedentary time and physical fitness components (cardiorespiratory fitness, muscular fitness and speed/agility) were measured and self-reported. Socio-economic status was assessed by questionnaire.
Ten European cities.
Adolescents (n 2148; aged 12·5–17·5 years).
Breakfast consumption was not associated with measured or self-reported physical activity. However, 24 h recall breakfast consumption was related to measured sedentary time in males and females; although results were not confirmed when using other methods to assess breakfast patterns or sedentary time. Breakfast consumption was not related to muscular fitness and speed/agility in males and females. However, male breakfast consumers had higher cardiorespiratory fitness compared with occasional breakfast consumers and breakfast skippers, while no differences were observed in females. Overall, results were consistent using different methods to assess breakfast consumption or cardiorespiratory fitness (all P ≤ 0·005). In addition, both male and female breakfast skippers (assessed by 24 h recall) were less likely to have high measured cardiorespiratory fitness compared with breakfast consumers (OR = 0·33; 95 % CI 0·18, 0·59 and OR = 0·56; 95 %CI 0·32, 0·98, respectively). Results persisted across methods.
Skipping breakfast does not seem to be related to physical activity, sedentary time or muscular fitness and speed/agility as physical fitness components in European adolescents; yet it is associated with both measured and self-reported cardiorespiratory fitness, which extends previous findings.