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To determine the relationship between falls and deficits in specific cognitive domains in older adults.
An analysis of the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing (ELSA) cohort.
United Kingdom community-based.
5197 community-dwelling older adults recruited to a prospective longitudinal cohort study.
Data on the occurrence of falls and number of falls, which occurred during a 12-month follow-up period, were assessed against the specific cognitive domains of memory, numeracy skills, and executive function. Binomial logistic regression was performed to evaluate the association between each cognitive domain and the dichotomous outcome of falls in the preceding 12 months using unadjusted and adjusted models.
Of the 5197 participants included in the analysis, 1308 (25%) reported a fall in the preceding 12 months. There was no significant association between the occurrence of a fall and specific forms of cognitive dysfunction after adjusting for self-reported hearing, self-reported eyesight, and functional performance. After adjustment, only orientation (odds ratio [OR]: 0.80; 95% confidence intervals [CI]: 0.65–0.98, p = 0.03) and verbal fluency (adjusted OR: 0.98; 95% CI: 0.96–1.00; p = 0.05) remained significant for predicting recurrent falls.
The cognitive phenotype rather than cognitive impairment per se may predict future falls in those presenting with more than one fall.
Although food from grazed animals is increasingly sought by consumers because of perceived animal welfare advantages, grazing systems provide the farmer and the animal with unique challenges. The system is dependent almost daily on the climate for feed supply, with the importation of large amounts of feed from off farm, and associated labour and mechanisation costs, sometimes reducing economic viability. Furthermore, the cow may have to walk long distances and be able to harvest feed efficiently in a highly competitive environment because of the need for high levels of pasture utilisation. She must, also, be: (1) highly fertile, with a requirement for pregnancy within ~80 days post-calving; (2) ‘easy care’, because of the need for the management of large herds with limited labour; (3) able to walk long distances; and (4) robust to changes in feed supply and quality, so that short-term nutritional insults do not unduly influence her production and reproduction cycles. These are very different and are in addition to demands placed on cows in housed systems offered pre-made mixed rations. Furthermore, additional demands in environmental sustainability and animal welfare, in conjunction with the need for greater system-level biological efficiency (i.e. ‘sustainable intensification’), will add to the ‘robustness’ requirements of cows in the future. Increasingly, there is evidence that certain genotypes of cows perform better or worse in grazing systems, indicating a genotype×environment interaction. This has led to the development of tailored breeding objectives within countries for important heritable traits to maximise the profitability and sustainability of their production system. To date, these breeding objectives have focussed on the more easily measured traits and those of highest relative economic importance. In the future, there will be greater emphasis on more difficult to measure traits that are important to the quality of life of the animal in each production system and to reduce the system’s environmental footprint.
Most studies underline the contribution of heritable factors for psychiatric disorders. However, heritability estimates depend on the population under study, diagnostic instruments, and study designs that each has its inherent assumptions, strengths, and biases. We aim to test the homogeneity in heritability estimates between two powerful, and state of the art study designs for eight psychiatric disorders.
We assessed heritability based on data of Swedish siblings (N = 4 408 646 full and maternal half-siblings), and based on summary data of eight samples with measured genotypes (N = 125 533 cases and 208 215 controls). All data were based on standard diagnostic criteria. Eight psychiatric disorders were studied: (1) alcohol dependence (AD), (2) anorexia nervosa, (3) attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), (4) autism spectrum disorder, (5) bipolar disorder, (6) major depressive disorder, (7) obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and (8) schizophrenia.
Heritability estimates from sibling data varied from 0.30 for Major Depression to 0.80 for ADHD. The estimates based on the measured genotypes were lower, ranging from 0.10 for AD to 0.28 for OCD, but were significant, and correlated positively (0.19) with national sibling-based estimates. When removing OCD from the data the correlation increased to 0.50.
Given the unique character of each study design, the convergent findings for these eight psychiatric conditions suggest that heritability estimates are robust across different methods. The findings also highlight large differences in genetic and environmental influences between psychiatric disorders, providing future directions for etiological psychiatric research.
To investigate relationships between mortality and circulating 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D), 25-hydroxycholecalciferol (25(OH)D3) and 25-hydroxyergocalciferol (25(OH)D2).
Case–cohort study within the Melbourne Collaborative Cohort Study (MCCS). We measured 25(OH)D2 and 25(OH)D3 in archived dried blood spots by LC–MS/MS. Cox regression was used to estimate mortality hazard ratios (HR), with adjustment for confounders.
The MCCS included 29 206 participants, who at recruitment in 1990–1994 were aged 40–69 years, had dried blood spots collected and no history of cancer. For the present study we selected participants who died by 31 December 2007 (n 2410) and a random sample (sub-cohort, n 2996).
The HR per 25 nmol/l increment in concentration of 25(OH)D and 25(OH)D3 were 0·86 (95 % CI 0·78, 0·96; P=0·007) and 0·85 (95 % CI 0·77, 0·95; P=0·003), respectively. Of 5108 participants, sixty-three (1·2 %) had detectable 25(OH)D2; their mean 25(OH)D concentration was 11·9 (95 % CI 7·3, 16·6) nmol/l higher (P<0·001). The HR for detectable 25(OH)D2 was 1·80 (95 % CI 1·09, 2·97; P=0·023); for those with detectable 25(OH)D2, the HR per 25 nmol/l increment in 25(OH)D was 1·06 (95 % CI 0·87, 1·29; P interaction=0·02). HR were similar for participants who reported being in good, very good or excellent health four years after recruitment.
Total 25(OH)D and 25(OH)D3 concentrations were inversely associated with mortality. The finding that the inverse association for 25(OH)D was restricted to those with no detectable 25(OH)D2 requires confirmation in populations with higher exposure to ergocalciferol.
C band backscatter parameters contain information about the upper snowpack/firn in the dry snow zone. The wide incidence angle diversity of the Advanced Scatterometer (ASCAT) gives unprecedented characterisation of backscatter anisotropy, revealing the backscatter response to climatic forcing. The A (isotropic component) and M2 (bi-sinusoidal azimuth anisotropy) parameters are investigated here, in conjunction with data from atmospheric and snowpack models, to identify the backscatter response to surface forcing parameters (wind speed and persistence, precipitation, surface temperature, density and grain size). The long-term mean A parameter is successfully recreated with a regression using these drivers, indicating strong links between the A parameter and precipitation on long timescales. While the ASCAT time series is too short to determine which factors drive observed trends, factors influencing the seasonal and short timescale variability are revealed. On these timescales, A strongly responds to the propagation of surface temperature cycles/anomalies downward through the firn, via direct modulation of the dielectric constant. The influence of precipitation on A is small at shorter timescales. The M2 parameter is controlled by wind speed and persistence, through modification of monodirectionally-aligned surface roughness. This variability indicates that throughout much of coastal Antarctica, a microwave ‘snapshot’ is generally not representative of longer-term conditions.
Observational studies have suggested that 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) levels are associated with inflammatory markers. Most trials reporting significant associations between vitamin D intake and inflammatory markers used specific patient groups. Thus, we aimed to determine the effect of supplementary vitamin D using secondary data from a population-based, randomised, placebo-controlled, double-blind trial (Pilot D-Health trial 2010/0423). Participants were 60- to 84-year-old residents of one of the four eastern states of Australia. They were randomly selected from the electoral roll and were randomised to one of three trial arms: placebo (n 214), 750 μg (n 215) or 1500 μg (n 215) vitamin D3, each taken once per month for 12 months. Post-intervention blood samples for the analysis of C-reactive protein (CRP), IL-6, IL-10, leptin and adiponectin levels were available for 613 participants. Associations between intervention group and biomarker levels were evaluated using quantile regression. There were no statistically significant differences in distributions of CRP, leptin, adiponectin, leptin:adiponectin ratio or IL-10 levels between the placebo group and either supplemented group. The 75th percentile IL-6 level was 2·8 pg/ml higher (95 % CI 0·4, 5·8 pg/ml) in the 1500 μg group than in the placebo group (75th percentiles:11·0 v. 8·2 pg/ml), with a somewhat smaller, non-significant difference in 75th percentiles between the 750 μg and placebo groups. Despite large differences in serum 25(OH)D levels between the three groups after 12 months of supplementation, we found little evidence of an effect of vitamin D supplementation on cytokine or adipokine levels, with the possible exception of IL-6.
We sought to explain seasonality and other aspects of Campylobacter jejuni epidemiology by integrating population genetic and epidemiological analysis in a large 3-year longitudinal, two-centre, population-based study. Epidemiological information was collected for 1505 isolates, which were multilocus sequence-typed. Analyses compared pathogen population structure between areas, over time, and between clinical presentations. Pooled analysis was performed with published international datasets. Subtype association with virulence was not observed. UK sites had nearly identical C. jejuni populations. A clade formed by ST45 and ST283 clonal complexes showed a summer peak. This clade was common in a Finnish dataset but not in New Zealand and Australian collections, countries with less marked seasonality. The UK, New Zealand and Australian collections were otherwise similar. These findings map to known in-vitro differences of this clade. This identifies a target for studies to elucidate the drivers of the summer peak in human C. jejuni infection.
Solid-oxide fuel cell (SOFC) performance depends greatly upon electrode design. The composite anode plays a critical role in fuel reforming, especially when hydrocarbons are included in the fuel mixture. Because direct observation of fuel reforming in a functioning SOFC is difficult, if not impossible, an alternative experimental configuration is needed to evaluate anode performance. The Separated Anode Experiment (SAE) is designed to isolate and study porous-media transport and heterogeneous reforming chemistry in SOFC anodes. Although the experiment does not incorporate a dense electrolyte membrane or a cathode, it is configured to replicate important aspects of anode behavior in a fully operational SOFC. The experiment is also designed to facilitate model-based interpretation of the results. Comparisons of two significantly different anode structures are used to illustrate the experimental and modeling capabilities.
The primary objective of this study was to assess the impact of catfish imports and tariffs on the U.S. catfish industry, with particular focus on the U.S. International Trade Commission ruling on Vietnam in 2003. Given the importance of Vietnam to the U.S. catfish market, it was assumed that catfish import prices would increase by 35 percent if the maximum tariff was imposed on catfish from Vietnam. With the tariff, domestic catfish prices at the wholesale level would increase by $0.06 per lb, and farm prices by $0.03 per lb. Processor sales would increase by 1.66 percent. Total welfare at the wholesale level would increase from $69.2 million to $71.7 million, an increase of about 3.63 percent, and processor and farm revenue would increase by 4.4 percent and 5.8 percent, respectively. These results represent the greatest possible benefit and suggest modest gains for the U.S. catfish industry.
The evolution of glyphosate resistance in weedy species places an environmentally benign herbicide in peril. The first report of a dicot plant with evolved glyphosate resistance was horseweed, which occurred in 2001. Since then, several species have evolved glyphosate resistance and genomic information about nontarget resistance mechanisms in any of them ranges from none to little. Here, we report a study combining iGentifier transcriptome analysis, cDNA sequencing, and a heterologous microarray analysis to explore potential molecular and transcriptomic mechanisms of nontarget glyphosate resistance of horseweed. The results indicate that similar molecular mechanisms might exist for nontarget herbicide resistance across multiple resistant plants from different locations, even though resistance among these resistant plants likely evolved independently and available evidence suggests resistance has evolved at least four separate times. In addition, both the microarray and sequence analyses identified non–target-site resistance candidate genes for follow-on functional genomics analysis.
Simple Triage and Rapid Treatment (START) and more recently developed prehospital casualty triage algorithms are widely used, in part because they are easy to teach and learn, and can be performed rapidly. Every rapid triage protocol has inherent, significant limitations: (1) no mechanism of injury (MOI) considerations; (2) limited assessment points; and (3) no refinement in truly mass-casualty situations where transport of “minor” or “moderate” patients may be delayed.
When rapid initial triage protocols are utilized, a significant triage deficiency (“under-triage”) may occur when “minor” or “moderate” casualties actually are more severely injured than initially triaged. Some MOI produce casualties with subtle or latent (i.e., hidden or delayed) signs and symptoms not considered in the commonly used prehospital triage algorithms. This research did not focus on START or other initial triage screening methods. Instead, it focuses on developing follow-on triage guidance to more specifically prioritize “delayed transport” casualties based upon signs and symptoms related to their MOI.
Using expert opinion and accepted clinical criteria, triage algorithms were developed to re-evaluate patients triaged to “minor” and “moderate” cohorts. A detailed literature search produced a draft list of relevant signs and symptoms for each selected MOI. The lists then were evaluated by a multi-disciplinary panel of experts via an anonymous, mail-based Delphi method. The input shaped triage algorithms for each selected MOI, which then were subjected to a second stage Delphi process.
Consensus was achieved using the Delphi method. The algorithms extend patient assessment beyond the rapid initial triage protocols and incorporate triage criteria specific to each selected injury mechanism or condition: (1) penetrating injuries; (2) unconventional MOI (burns, blast, chemical, radiation); (3) smoke and other inhalation exposure; and (4) injuries with concomitant pregnancy. The full list of triage protocols is designated by the acronym “-PLUS”.
“-PLUS” Prehospital Casualty Triage may supplement the strengths of already existing, widely accepted mass-casualty triage strategies. It does not displace START or other rapid initial triage protocols, but in mass-casualty situations with extensive delays in transport, it provides a method to identify under-triage of seriously injured casualties. “-PLUS” also presents a framework for capturing the triage considerations used by experienced medical providers, and so may provide a valuable teaching tool for training future triage professionals. Further research and field assessment is required.
To examine whether a worksite nutrition programme using a low-fat vegan diet could significantly improve nutritional intake.
At two corporate sites of the Government Employees Insurance Company, employees who were either overweight (BMI ≥ 25 kg/m2) and/or had type 2 diabetes participated in a 22-week worksite-based dietary intervention study.
At the intervention site, participants were asked to follow a low-fat vegan diet and participate in weekly group meetings that included instruction and group support (intervention group). At the control site, participants received no instruction (control group). At weeks 0 and 22, participants completed 3 d dietary records to assess energy and nutrient intake.
A total of 109 participants (sixty-five intervention and forty-four control).
In the intervention group, reported intake of total fat, trans fat, saturated fat and cholesterol decreased significantly (P ≤ 0·001), as did energy and protein (P = 0·01), and vitamin B12 (P = 0·002), compared with the control group. Intake (exclusive of any use of nutritional supplements) of carbohydrate, fibre, vitamin C, magnesium and potassium increased significantly (P ≤ 0·0001), as did that for β-carotene (P = 0·0004), total vitamin A activity (P = 0·004), vitamin K (P = 0·01) and sodium (P = 0·04) in the intervention group, compared with the control group.
The present study suggests that a worksite vegan nutrition programme increases intakes of protective nutrients, such as fibre, folate and vitamin C, and decreases intakes of total fat, saturated fat and cholesterol.
New Zealand bittercress is reported as new to the United States. While collecting specimens to determine what Cardamine species occur in the nursery trade, New Zealand bittercress was discovered in a container nursery in Wilkes County, North Carolina. The nursery tracked the shipment of contaminated plants to a wholesale nursery in Washington County, Oregon. It was subsequently confirmed that New Zealand bittercress also occurs in a nursery in Clackamas County, Oregon, and has likely been distributed throughout the United States as a contaminant in container grown ornamental plants. Thus far there have been no reports of naturalized populations outside of container nursery crop production facilities.
This review provides an assessment of research findings into the current practices and standards and the principles and aspirations for organic dairy production, with respect to the health and welfare of the dairy cow. The relationships between the four main factors: management, environment, genetics and nutrition and their impact on the health and welfare status of organic dairy cows are considered. The concept that good animal health and welfare is more than merely the absence of disease, with behavioural aspects of health and welfare such as physiological and psychological needs, is also discussed. These factors are inter-related and important in all dairy systems, irrespective of whether the system is organic, low-input or intensive. Incidences of individual clinical and sub-clinical diseases that are recorded in conventional dairy systems also occur in organic dairy systems, with infertility, lameness and mastitis being the major problems. However, the magnitude of the incidence of many of these diseases may be either lower or higher in organic systems due to different management practices and the standards defined for organic milk production that, for example, prohibit the routine use of conventional medicines and require the feeding of high-forage diets. In relation to different systems, it is important to note that contrary to a common assumption, good welfare does not necessarily occur with more extensive systems. The type of organic system (self-sufficient, purchased-feed) also has the potential to have a major influence on the incidence of health problems and the reproductive status of organic dairy herds. Health status is also influenced by environmental and welfare factors, including the method of rearing replacement animals, type of housing and the geographical and climatic conditions of individual farms. Overall, this review identifies where conflicts arise between current practice and the organic principles and standards, and aims to provide suggestions to bring about further improvement in organic dairy health and welfare.
A prospective study of genital infection was conducted in four inner-city family–planning clinics. Fifteen per cent of routine attenders had symptoms and signs of vaginal infection and many more women attended primarily because of symptoms. Among the women with both signs and symptoms, 70% had positive laboratory findings, Trichomonas vaginalis, Candida albicans and bacterial vaginosis being equally prevalent. Measurement of vaginal pH in the clinic was the single most useful clinical finding for directing empirical therapy. Among patients with a discharge confirmed on examination and an abnormally high pH, 72% had either T. vaginalis or bacterial vaginosis. Neisseria gonorrhoeae was isolated from 4% of women with, and 1% of those without, symptoms. We believe that it is worthwhile to investigate patients presenting to family-planning clinics with vaginal symptoms. No single specimen was found ideal for all pathogens, a cervical swab is better for gonococci and also for T. vaginalis but a vaginal swab is needed for Candida and bacterial vaginosis.
During a study of genital infection in inner-city family-planning patients we examined 452 women for Chlamydia trachomatis. The prevalence of infection was 7·3%. There was no significant difference between patients attending because of genital symptoms and those who were attending for routine family-planning advice. Infection was found to be correlated with five main demographic parameters; age less than 25, no stable partnership, hormonal contraception, nulliparity and West Indian Ethnic origin. Using these parameters a simple scoring system was devised which allowed a high-risk population to be defined in whom screening would be economically justified.