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The COllaborative project of Development of Anthropometrical measures in Twins (CODATwins) project is a large international collaborative effort to analyze individual-level phenotype data from twins in multiple cohorts from different environments. The main objective is to study factors that modify genetic and environmental variation of height, body mass index (BMI, kg/m2) and size at birth, and additionally to address other research questions such as long-term consequences of birth size. The project started in 2013 and is open to all twin projects in the world having height and weight measures on twins with information on zygosity. Thus far, 54 twin projects from 24 countries have provided individual-level data. The CODATwins database includes 489,981 twin individuals (228,635 complete twin pairs). Since many twin cohorts have collected longitudinal data, there is a total of 1,049,785 height and weight observations. For many cohorts, we also have information on birth weight and length, own smoking behavior and own or parental education. We found that the heritability estimates of height and BMI systematically changed from infancy to old age. Remarkably, only minor differences in the heritability estimates were found across cultural–geographic regions, measurement time and birth cohort for height and BMI. In addition to genetic epidemiological studies, we looked at associations of height and BMI with education, birth weight and smoking status. Within-family analyses examined differences within same-sex and opposite-sex dizygotic twins in birth size and later development. The CODATwins project demonstrates the feasibility and value of international collaboration to address gene-by-exposure interactions that require large sample sizes and address the effects of different exposures across time, geographical regions and socioeconomic status.
The majority of paediatric Clostridioides difficile infections (CDI) are community-associated (CA), but few data exist regarding associated risk factors. We conducted a case–control study to evaluate CA-CDI risk factors in young children. Participants were enrolled from eight US sites during October 2014–February 2016. Case-patients were defined as children aged 1–5 years with a positive C. difficile specimen collected as an outpatient or ⩽3 days of hospital admission, who had no healthcare facility admission in the prior 12 weeks and no history of CDI. Each case-patient was matched to one control. Caregivers were interviewed regarding relevant exposures. Multivariable conditional logistic regression was performed. Of 68 pairs, 44.1% were female. More case-patients than controls had a comorbidity (33.3% vs. 12.1%; P = 0.01); recent higher-risk outpatient exposures (34.9% vs. 17.7%; P = 0.03); recent antibiotic use (54.4% vs. 19.4%; P < 0.0001); or recent exposure to a household member with diarrhoea (41.3% vs. 21.5%; P = 0.04). In multivariable analysis, antibiotic exposure in the preceding 12 weeks was significantly associated with CA-CDI (adjusted matched odds ratio, 6.25; 95% CI 2.18–17.96). Improved antibiotic prescribing might reduce CA-CDI in this population. Further evaluation of the potential role of outpatient healthcare and household exposures in C. difficile transmission is needed.
The St. Louis aerosol was sampled during the period 16-22 August 1973 simultaneously at two locations using cascade impactors for sequential 12-hour samples. The six particle size fractions of each sampling were individually analyzed using PIXE for elements from S to Br and beyond and for heavy elements including Pb which permitted time variations of concentrations and particle size distributions to be followed and related to meteorological changes during the sampling period. In addition, the data were compared with average levels of the elements in coastal north Florida and maritime Bermuda as well as at a third St. Louis site. From this it appeared that some of the concentrations in St. Louis were at natural levels whereas others appeared to be higher and linked to air pollution sources. These relationships and others in this study may lead to criteria for distinguishing between pollutants and natural background in urban aerosols.
Lempert, Chambers, and Adams (2000; hereafter LCA) make an important contribution to both the debate on affirmative action in legal education and the sociology of the legal profession. We find their empirical results credible and agree with their interpretations of the data related to arguments about the role of affirmative action in Michigan's admissions policies. Yet, in crafting an analysis to demonstrate the similarities in the career outcomes of minority and white graduates, they have minimized evidence that points to substantial continuing patterns of inequality by race and gender within the legal profession. Moreover, LCA only begin to illuminate the mechanisms that produce the career patterns they document. Of particular importance is the question of how race, class, and gender interact to shape lawyers' careers-a topic LCA largely reserve for future analyses.
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.
The photometric phase curves of Saturn's A and B rings exhibit a sharp peak in reflectance when the phase angle approaches zero, commonly known as the opposition effect. Recent work has suggested that the width and amplitude of the opposition effect may be consistent with coherent backscattering from wavelength-sized grains which cover the surfaces of macroscopic ring particles.
Depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are significant risks for suicide and other adverse events among US military personnel, but prevalence data among ship-assigned personnel at the onset of deployment are unknown.
To determine the prevalence of shipboard personnel who screen positive for PTSD and/or major depressive disorder (MDD) at the onset of deployment, and also those who reported these diagnoses made by a physician or healthcare professional in the year prior to deployment.
Active-duty ship-assigned personnel (N = 2078) completed anonymous assessments at the beginning of deployment. Depression was measured using the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CES-D; score of ≥22), and PTSD was assessed using the PTSD Checklist–Civilian Version (PCL-C; both score and symptom criteria were used).
In total, 7.3% (n = 151 of 2076) screened positive for PTSD and 22% (n = 461 of 2078) for MDD at deployment onset. Only 6% and 15% of those who screened positive for PTSD or MDD, respectively, had been diagnosed by a healthcare professional in the past year.
Missed opportunities for mental healthcare among screen-positive shipboard personnel reduce the benefits associated with early identification and linkage to care. Improved methods of mental health screening that promote early recognition and referral to care may mitigate psychiatric events in theatre.
Whether monozygotic (MZ) and dizygotic (DZ) twins differ from each other in a variety of phenotypes is important for genetic twin modeling and for inferences made from twin studies in general. We analyzed whether there were differences in individual, maternal and paternal education between MZ and DZ twins in a large pooled dataset. Information was gathered on individual education for 218,362 adult twins from 27 twin cohorts (53% females; 39% MZ twins), and on maternal and paternal education for 147,315 and 143,056 twins respectively, from 28 twin cohorts (52% females; 38% MZ twins). Together, we had information on individual or parental education from 42 twin cohorts representing 19 countries. The original education classifications were transformed to education years and analyzed using linear regression models. Overall, MZ males had 0.26 (95% CI [0.21, 0.31]) years and MZ females 0.17 (95% CI [0.12, 0.21]) years longer education than DZ twins. The zygosity difference became smaller in more recent birth cohorts for both males and females. Parental education was somewhat longer for fathers of DZ twins in cohorts born in 1990–1999 (0.16 years, 95% CI [0.08, 0.25]) and 2000 or later (0.11 years, 95% CI [0.00, 0.22]), compared with fathers of MZ twins. The results show that the years of both individual and parental education are largely similar in MZ and DZ twins. We suggest that the socio-economic differences between MZ and DZ twins are so small that inferences based upon genetic modeling of twin data are not affected.
Patient-reported outcomes and epidemiological studies in adults with tetralogy of Fallot are lacking. Recruitment and longitudinal follow-up investigation across institutions is particularly challenging. Objectives of this study were to assess the feasibility of recruiting adult patients with tetralogy of Fallot for a patient-reported outcomes study, describe challenges for recruitment, and create an interactive, online tetralogy of Fallot registry.
Adult patients living with tetralogy of Fallot, aged 18–58 years, at the University of North Carolina were identified using diagnosis code query. A survey was designed to collect demographics, symptoms, history, and birth mother information. Recruitment was attempted by phone (Part I, n=20) or by email (Part II, n=20). Data analysis included thematic grouping of recruitment challenges and descriptive statistics. Feasibility threshold was 75% for recruitment and for data fields completed per patient.
In Part I, 60% (12/20) were successfully contacted and eight (40%) were enrolled. Demographics and birth mother information were obtained for all enrolled patients. In Part II, 70% (14/20) were successfully contacted; 30% (6/20) enrolled and completed all data fields linked to REDCap database; the median time for survey completion was 8 minutes. Half of the patients had cardiac operations/procedures performed at more than one hospital. Automatic electronic data entry from the online survey was uncomplicated.
Although recruitment (54%) fell below our feasibility threshold, enrolled individuals were willing to complete phone or online surveys. Incorrect contact information, privacy concerns, and patient-reported time constraints were challenges for recruitment. Creating an online survey and linked database is technically feasible and efficient for patient-reported outcomes research.
The supernova remnant G109.2–1.0 was discovered at λ49cm by Hughes, Harten and van den Bergh (1981) during a survey of part of the Galactic plane. The northern part of it had been detected previously as the non-thermal radio source CTB109 by Wilson and Bolton (1960), and by Raghava Roa et al (1965), but the extended low brightness of the source and its close proximity to the very strong source Cas A, from which it is separated by ∼5′, excluded it from any further detailed study. It was discovered independently at X-ray wavelengths by Gregory and Fahlman (1980). Recently, the original WSRT radio observations have been found to be in error as a result of applying the CLEAN procedure to an extended source, and since the object appears to contain an X-ray pulsar (Fahlman and Gregory, 1981), it was decided to carry out a more detailed and extensive mapping of the remmant using different antenna arrays and frequencies. This paper describes the results obtained at λ49cm and λ21cm using the Westerbork Synthesis Radio Telescope (WSRT), at λ21cm using the aperture synthesis array at the Dominion Radio Astrophysical Observatory (DRAO) and at λ4.6cm using the 46m telescope of the Algonquin Radio Observatory (ARO). Thus, data has been obtained from three completely independent telescopes, using completely independent data reduction systems. Of importance is the fact that not only have wavelengths been chosen such that the larger dimensions of the array give a reasonable angular resolution of ≤1′, but also that the smallest spacing enables the larger angular dimensions of the remnant to be observed. This paper presents some of the results and a brief interpretation.
A Tandem Van de Graaff accelerator has been modified for use in the direct measurement of natural abundances of 10Be and 14C. A description of the system is given and some 10Be results on oceanographic samples are discussed.
Not only is depression associated with increased inflammation but inflammation is a risk factor for the genesis of depression. Many of the environmental risk factors for depression are transduced through inflammatory signaling. Anti-inflammatory agents show promise for the management of depression in preclinical, epidemiological, and early clinical studies. This opens the door to the potential for anti-inflammatory agents to treat and prevent depression. There are no evidence-based pharmacotherapies for depression prevention.
ASPREE-D, aspirin in the prevention of depression in the elderly, is a sub study of ASPREE, which explores the potential of aspirin to prevent a range of inflammation related disorders in the elderly. With a sample size of 19,114, and a duration of 5 years, this placebo controlled study will be one of the largest randomized controlled trials in psychiatry and will provide definitive evidence on the ability of aspirin to prevent depression.
This paper presents the rationale for the study and presents a summary of the study design.
ASPREE-D may not only define novel therapy but will provide mechanistic proof of concept of the role of inflammation in depression.
The aims of the present study were to provide nationally representative data on fruit and vegetable consumption in Vietnam, and to assess the accuracy of the reported numbers of ‘standard servings’ consumed. Data analysed were from a multi-stage stratified cluster survey of 14 706 participants (46·5 % males, response proportion 64·1 %) aged 25−64 years in Vietnam. Measurements were made in accordance with the WHO STEPwise approach to surveillance of non-communicable diseases (STEPS) protocols. Approximately 80 % of Vietnamese people reported having less than five servings of fruit and vegetables daily in a typical week. Fruit and vegetable intake reported in ‘standard serving’ sizes was positively correlated with levels of education completed and household income (P<0·001 for trend). The correlations between summary values for each province reflect some known demographic, geographical and climatic characteristics of the country. For example, provinces at higher latitude had higher mean servings of vegetables (r 0·90), and provinces with higher proportions of urban population had higher mean servings of fruit (r 0·40). In conclusion, about eight in ten Vietnamese people aged 25–64 years did not meet WHO recommendations for daily consumption of at least five servings of fruit and vegetables. On the basis of the consistency of the data collected with other estimates and with physical and demographic characteristics of the country, the WHO STEPS instrument has construct validity for measuring fruit and vegetable intake, but with two issues identified. The issues were seasonal variation in reporting and a limitation on the usefulness of the information for associative analyses.
We present an overview of the survey for radio emission from active stars that has been in progress for the last six years using the observatories at Fleurs, Molonglo, Parkes and Tidbinbilla. The role of complementary optical observations at the Anglo-Australian Observatory, Mount Burnett, Mount Stromlo and Siding Spring Observatories and Mount Tamborine are also outlined. We describe the different types of star that have been included in our survey and discuss some of the problems in making the radio observations.
The single G8V active chromosphere star HD36705 (AB Dor) was observed at 8.4 GHz with the Parkes 64 m telescope during three observing sessions involving a total of 21 days in the interval 1985 December to 1986 February. Subsequent photometric observations were made of the star with the 0.25 m and 0.45 m telescopes of the Monash Observatory in 1986 March-April. Two strong radio flares, each lasting three days, were detected; they yielded peak radio powers of P8.4≈4×109 W Hz-1, comparable with the microwave power emitted by the RS CVn binaries. Significant circular polarization of 13% left-hand was measured on only one of the six active days. The 8.4 GHz flux density showed smooth variation over an interval of several hours, consistent with the flare source being partly occulted by the stellar disk as the star rotated. When all the radio data was phase-binned using the known rotation period of 0.514 day we found two radio maxima corresponding to radio sources at stellar longitudes ~180° apart. The subsequent photometric data showed intensity variations that were consistent with the starspots at the same approximate longitudes. We thus interpret our radio curve as showing the presence of comparatively small (<0.5 D*) radio sources in the corona above the star spots. The upper limit to source diameter gives a peak brightness temperature ≥2×l010 K, which can be achieved by gyro-synchrotron emission only if the source is optically thick and the electrons, with average energy ~ 2 MeV, have a hard energy spectrum. The observed radiation can be due only to very high harmonics of the gyro-frequency, leading to an estimate for the magnetic field strength of ~30G.
We describe bright microwave events that were first detected with the Parkes 64-m telescope at 8.4 or 22 GHz from six active-chromosphere stars. In some flares spectral data were obtained over a large frequency range from simultaneous measurements with the Parkes reflector (8.4 or 22 GHz), the Tidbinbilla interferometer (8.4 and 2.29 GHz), the Fleurs synthesis telescope (1.42 GHz) and the Molonglo Observatory synthesis telescope (0.843 GHz). Data on circular polarization were obtained from the Parkes observations at 8.4 GHz.
The stars were in a wide variety of evolutionary states, ranging from a single pre-main-sequence star (HD 36705), two RS CVn binaries (HD 127535, HD 128171), an Algol (HD 132742) and two apparently single K giants (HD 32918 and HD 196818). Their high brightness temperatures, positive spectral indices and low polarization are consistent with optically thick gyrosynchrotron emission from mildly relativistic electrons with average energies 0.5 to 3 MeV gyrating in inhomogeneous magnetic fields of 5 to 100 G.
We present the first massive frequency analysis of the 1200 first overtone RR Lyrae stars in the Large Magellanic Cloud observed in the first 4.3 yr of the MACHO project. Besides the many new double-mode variables, we also discovered stars with closely spaced frequencies. These variables are most probably nonradial pulsators.
We analyzed birth order differences in means and variances of height and body mass index (BMI) in monozygotic (MZ) and dizygotic (DZ) twins from infancy to old age. The data were derived from the international CODATwins database. The total number of height and BMI measures from 0.5 to 79.5 years of age was 397,466. As expected, first-born twins had greater birth weight than second-born twins. With respect to height, first-born twins were slightly taller than second-born twins in childhood. After adjusting the results for birth weight, the birth order differences decreased and were no longer statistically significant. First-born twins had greater BMI than the second-born twins over childhood and adolescence. After adjusting the results for birth weight, birth order was still associated with BMI until 12 years of age. No interaction effect between birth order and zygosity was found. Only limited evidence was found that birth order influenced variances of height or BMI. The results were similar among boys and girls and also in MZ and DZ twins. Overall, the differences in height and BMI between first- and second-born twins were modest even in early childhood, while adjustment for birth weight reduced the birth order differences but did not remove them for BMI.