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Cross-sectional data show elevated levels of circulating cytokines in psychiatric patients. The literature is divided concerning anti-inflammatory drugs’ ability to relieve symptoms, questioning a causal link between inflammatory pathways and psychiatric conditions. We hypothesised that the development of circulating cytokine levels is related to mental distress, and that this relationship is affected by the use of anti-inflammatory drugs.
The study was a longitudinal assessment of 12-week inpatient treatment at Modum Bad Psychiatric Center, Norway. Sera and self-reported Global Severity Index (GSI) scores, which measure psychological distress, were collected at admission (T0), halfway (T1) and before discharge (T2). Other variables known to distort the neuroimmune interplay were included. These were age, gender, diagnosis of PTSD, antidepressants and anti-inflammatory drugs. A total of 128 patients (92 women and 36 men) were included, and 28 were using anti-inflammatory medication. Multilevel modelling was used for data analysis.
Patients with higher levels of IL-1RA and MCP-1 had higher GSI scores (p = 0.005 and p = 0.020). PTSD patients scored higher on GSI than non-PTSD patients (p = 0.002). These relationships were mostly present among those not using anti-inflammatory drugs (n = 99), with higher levels of IL-1RA and MCP-1 being related to higher GSI score (p = 0.023 and 0.018, respectively). Again, PTSD patients showed higher GSI levels than non-PTSD patients (p = 0.014).
Cytokine levels were associated with level of mental distress as measured by the GSI scores, but this relationship was not present among those using anti-inflammatory drugs. We found no association between cytokine levels and development of GSI score over time.
Item 9 of the Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9) queries about thoughts of death and self-harm, but not suicidality. Although it is sometimes used to assess suicide risk, most positive responses are not associated with suicidality. The PHQ-8, which omits Item 9, is thus increasingly used in research. We assessed equivalency of total score correlations and the diagnostic accuracy to detect major depression of the PHQ-8 and PHQ-9.
We conducted an individual patient data meta-analysis. We fit bivariate random-effects models to assess diagnostic accuracy.
16 742 participants (2097 major depression cases) from 54 studies were included. The correlation between PHQ-8 and PHQ-9 scores was 0.996 (95% confidence interval 0.996 to 0.996). The standard cutoff score of 10 for the PHQ-9 maximized sensitivity + specificity for the PHQ-8 among studies that used a semi-structured diagnostic interview reference standard (N = 27). At cutoff 10, the PHQ-8 was less sensitive by 0.02 (−0.06 to 0.00) and more specific by 0.01 (0.00 to 0.01) among those studies (N = 27), with similar results for studies that used other types of interviews (N = 27). For all 54 primary studies combined, across all cutoffs, the PHQ-8 was less sensitive than the PHQ-9 by 0.00 to 0.05 (0.03 at cutoff 10), and specificity was within 0.01 for all cutoffs (0.00 to 0.01).
PHQ-8 and PHQ-9 total scores were similar. Sensitivity may be minimally reduced with the PHQ-8, but specificity is similar.
One new genus of Inocelliidae (Raphidioptera) with one new species and one undetermined specimen is described from the Eocene of North America: Paraksenocellia borealisnew genus, new species from the early Eocene (Ypresian) Okanagan Highlands shale at Driftwood Canyon, British Columbia, Canada (a forewing), and Paraksenocellia species from the middle Eocene (Lutetian) of the Coal Creek Member of the Kishenehn Formation, northwestern Montana, United States of America (a hind wing). These are the oldest records of the family. The new genus possesses many character states that are rare in Inocelliidae, e.g., a very long pterostigma extending to ScP in both the forewings and hind wings; the forewing subcostal space has three crossveins; the forewing and hind wing AA1 are deeply forked; the crossvein between CuA and CuP is located far distad the crossvein 1r-m. Paraksenocellia is confidently a member of the Inocelliidae, as it possesses a proximal shift of the basal crossvein 1r-m (connecting R and M) in the forewing and the loss of the basal crossvein 1r-m in the hind wing, both apomorphies of the family. It shares some character states with the Mesozoic Mesoraphidiidae, which we consider to be mostly stem-group plesiomorphies.
Determining infectious cross-transmission events in healthcare settings involves manual surveillance of case clusters by infection control personnel, followed by strain typing of clinical/environmental isolates suspected in said clusters. Recent advances in genomic sequencing and cloud computing now allow for the rapid molecular typing of infecting isolates.
To facilitate rapid recognition of transmission clusters, we aimed to assess infection control surveillance using whole-genome sequencing (WGS) of microbial pathogens to identify cross-transmission events for epidemiologic review.
Clinical isolates of Staphylococcus aureus, Enterococcus faecium, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Klebsiella pneumoniae were obtained prospectively at an academic medical center, from September 1, 2016, to September 30, 2017. Isolate genomes were sequenced, followed by single-nucleotide variant analysis; a cloud-computing platform was used for whole-genome sequence analysis and cluster identification.
Most strains of the 4 studied pathogens were unrelated, and 34 potential transmission clusters were present. The characteristics of the potential clusters were complex and likely not identifiable by traditional surveillance alone. Notably, only 1 cluster had been suspected by routine manual surveillance.
Our work supports the assertion that integration of genomic and clinical epidemiologic data can augment infection control surveillance for both the identification of cross-transmission events and the inclusion of missed and exclusion of misidentified outbreaks (ie, false alarms). The integration of clinical data is essential to prioritize suspect clusters for investigation, and for existing infections, a timely review of both the clinical and WGS results can hold promise to reduce HAIs. A richer understanding of cross-transmission events within healthcare settings will require the expansion of current surveillance approaches.
The role that vitamin D plays in pulmonary function remains uncertain. Epidemiological studies reported mixed findings for serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D)–pulmonary function association. We conducted the largest cross-sectional meta-analysis of the 25(OH)D–pulmonary function association to date, based on nine European ancestry (EA) cohorts (n 22 838) and five African ancestry (AA) cohorts (n 4290) in the Cohorts for Heart and Aging Research in Genomic Epidemiology Consortium. Data were analysed using linear models by cohort and ancestry. Effect modification by smoking status (current/former/never) was tested. Results were combined using fixed-effects meta-analysis. Mean serum 25(OH)D was 68 (sd 29) nmol/l for EA and 49 (sd 21) nmol/l for AA. For each 1 nmol/l higher 25(OH)D, forced expiratory volume in the 1st second (FEV1) was higher by 1·1 ml in EA (95 % CI 0·9, 1·3; P<0·0001) and 1·8 ml (95 % CI 1·1, 2·5; P<0·0001) in AA (Prace difference=0·06), and forced vital capacity (FVC) was higher by 1·3 ml in EA (95 % CI 1·0, 1·6; P<0·0001) and 1·5 ml (95 % CI 0·8, 2·3; P=0·0001) in AA (Prace difference=0·56). Among EA, the 25(OH)D–FVC association was stronger in smokers: per 1 nmol/l higher 25(OH)D, FVC was higher by 1·7 ml (95 % CI 1·1, 2·3) for current smokers and 1·7 ml (95 % CI 1·2, 2·1) for former smokers, compared with 0·8 ml (95 % CI 0·4, 1·2) for never smokers. In summary, the 25(OH)D associations with FEV1 and FVC were positive in both ancestries. In EA, a stronger association was observed for smokers compared with never smokers, which supports the importance of vitamin D in vulnerable populations.
High-resolution spectra for all bright ( mag) and cooler than F5 spectral class dwarf stars were observed in two fields with radii of 20 degrees (centered at (2000) = 161.03º and (2000) = 86.60º and at (2000) = 265.08º and (2000) = 39.58º) towards the northern ecliptic pole. They coincide with two of the preliminary ESA PLATO fields which also will be targeted by the NASA TESS mission. We use high-resolution spectra obtained with the VUES spectrograph mounted on the 1.65 m telescope at the Moletai Astronomical Observatory of the Institute of Theoretical Physics and Astronomy, Vilnius University. In total we observed 405 stars. Spectroscopic atmospheric parameters and abundances of 23 neutral and ionised atomic species were determined for 261 slowly rotating stars (up to 15 kms-1). 73% of stars were analysed spectroscopically for the first time. We also derived stellar ages and orbital parameters to draw a chemical picture of the Solar vicinity.
Stars and planets form from the same material, thus some of their properties are expected to be inter-connected. In order to characterise exoplanets, we need to investigate the planet-hosting stars. Carbon and oxygen are quite abundant and play an important role in stellar interiors by generating energy in thermonuclear reactions. Abundances of C and O may influence water availability on exoplanets. The C/O ratio also controls an amount of carbides and silicates that can be formed. Thus, we are performing a uniform study of C/O ratios in bright stars ( V < mag) located towards the northern ecliptic pole which will be targeted by the TESS and JWST space missions. The first results for a sample of 140 stars analysed are presented.
Different diagnostic interviews are used as reference standards for major depression classification in research. Semi-structured interviews involve clinical judgement, whereas fully structured interviews are completely scripted. The Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview (MINI), a brief fully structured interview, is also sometimes used. It is not known whether interview method is associated with probability of major depression classification.
To evaluate the association between interview method and odds of major depression classification, controlling for depressive symptom scores and participant characteristics.
Data collected for an individual participant data meta-analysis of Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9) diagnostic accuracy were analysed and binomial generalised linear mixed models were fit.
A total of 17 158 participants (2287 with major depression) from 57 primary studies were analysed. Among fully structured interviews, odds of major depression were higher for the MINI compared with the Composite International Diagnostic Interview (CIDI) (odds ratio (OR) = 2.10; 95% CI = 1.15–3.87). Compared with semi-structured interviews, fully structured interviews (MINI excluded) were non-significantly more likely to classify participants with low-level depressive symptoms (PHQ-9 scores ≤6) as having major depression (OR = 3.13; 95% CI = 0.98–10.00), similarly likely for moderate-level symptoms (PHQ-9 scores 7–15) (OR = 0.96; 95% CI = 0.56–1.66) and significantly less likely for high-level symptoms (PHQ-9 scores ≥16) (OR = 0.50; 95% CI = 0.26–0.97).
The MINI may identify more people as depressed than the CIDI, and semi-structured and fully structured interviews may not be interchangeable methods, but these results should be replicated.
Declaration of interest
Drs Jetté and Patten declare that they received a grant, outside the submitted work, from the Hotchkiss Brain Institute, which was jointly funded by the Institute and Pfizer. Pfizer was the original sponsor of the development of the PHQ-9, which is now in the public domain. Dr Chan is a steering committee member or consultant of Astra Zeneca, Bayer, Lilly, MSD and Pfizer. She has received sponsorships and honorarium for giving lectures and providing consultancy and her affiliated institution has received research grants from these companies. Dr Hegerl declares that within the past 3 years, he was an advisory board member for Lundbeck, Servier and Otsuka Pharma; a consultant for Bayer Pharma; and a speaker for Medice Arzneimittel, Novartis, and Roche Pharma, all outside the submitted work. Dr Inagaki declares that he has received grants from Novartis Pharma, lecture fees from Pfizer, Mochida, Shionogi, Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma, Daiichi-Sankyo, Meiji Seika and Takeda, and royalties from Nippon Hyoron Sha, Nanzando, Seiwa Shoten, Igaku-shoin and Technomics, all outside of the submitted work. Dr Yamada reports personal fees from Meiji Seika Pharma Co., Ltd., MSD K.K., Asahi Kasei Pharma Corporation, Seishin Shobo, Seiwa Shoten Co., Ltd., Igaku-shoin Ltd., Chugai Igakusha and Sentan Igakusha, all outside the submitted work. All other authors declare no competing interests. No funder had any role in the design and conduct of the study; collection, management, analysis and interpretation of the data; preparation, review or approval of the manuscript; and decision to submit the manuscript for publication.
While previous work showed that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention toolkit for carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) can reduce spread regionally, these interventions are costly, and decisions makers want to know whether and when economic benefits occur.
Orange County, California
Using our Regional Healthcare Ecosystem Analyst (RHEA)-generated agent-based model of all inpatient healthcare facilities, we simulated the implementation of the CRE toolkit (active screening of interfacility transfers) in different ways and estimated their economic impacts under various circumstances.
Compared to routine control measures, screening generated cost savings by year 1 when hospitals implemented screening after identifying ≤20 CRE cases (saving $2,000–$9,000) and by year 7 if all hospitals implemented in a regional coordinated manner after 1 hospital identified a CRE case (hospital perspective). Cost savings was achieved only if hospitals independently screened after identifying 10 cases (year 1, third-party payer perspective). Cost savings was achieved by year 1 if hospitals independently screened after identifying 1 CRE case and by year 3 if all hospitals coordinated and screened after 1 hospital identified 1 case (societal perspective). After a few years, all strategies cost less and have positive health effects compared to routine control measures; most strategies generate a positive cost-benefit each year.
Active screening of interfacility transfers garnered cost savings in year 1 of implementation when hospitals acted independently and by year 3 if all hospitals collectively implemented the toolkit in a coordinated manner. Despite taking longer to manifest, coordinated regional control resulted in greater savings over time.
A crops ability to both suppress weed growth and tolerate weed competition is a key consideration when taking an agroecological approach to weed management. Amongst other cereals, oats are widely considered to have superior weed competitiveness yet studies examining competitive ability of oat varieties are rare. We investigated the ability of oats to suppress weeds and yield in the presence of competition from weeds in trials involving five husked and three naked oat varieties at an organic site in the east of England over four trial years (2009-13). We identified a number of key traits that were important for weed suppression including establishment rate, tillering ability, and early leaf area index (LAI) which highlight the importance of rapid early growth rate. Furthermore, taller varieties tended to be more weed tolerant but not necessarily more suppressive. Trade-offs between competitive traits and yield were not found in this study. Crop tillering ability was highlighted as an important trait for selection due to its beneficial effects on weed suppression as well as grain yield and also its high heritability.
Ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) is a frequent complication of severe burn injury. Comparing the current ventilator-associated event-possible VAP definition to the pre-2013 VAP definition, we identified considerably fewer VAP cases in our burn ICU. The new definition does not capture many VAP cases that would have been reported using the pre-2013 definition.
Objectives: The cerebellum (CB) is known for its role in supporting processing speed (PS) and cognitive efficiencies. The CB often sustains damage from treatment and resection in pediatric patients with posterior fossa tumors. Limited research suggests that CB atrophy may be associated with the radiation treatment experienced during childhood. The purpose of the study was to measure cerebellar atrophy to determine its neurobehavioral correlates. Methods: Brain magnetic resonance images were collected from 25 adult survivors of CB tumors and age- and gender-matched controls (Mage=24 years (SD=5), 52% female). Average age at diagnosis was 9 years (SD=5) and average time since diagnosis was 15 years (SD=5). PS was measured by the Symbol Digit Modality Test. To quantify atrophy, an objective formula was developed based on prior literature, in which Atrophy=[(CB White+CB Gray Volume)/Intracranial Vault (ICV)]controls-[(CB White+CB Gray+Lesion Size Volume)/ICV]survivors. Results: Regression analyses found that the interaction term (age at diagnosis*radiation) predicts CB atrophy; regression equations included the Neurological Predictor Scale, lesion size, atrophy, and the interaction term and accounted for 33% of the variance in oral PS and 48% of the variance in written PS. Both interactions suggest that individuals with smaller CB lesion size but a greater degree of CB atrophy had slower PS, whereas individuals with a larger CB lesion size and less CB atrophy were less affected. Conclusion: The results of the current study suggest that young age at diagnosis and radiation is associated with CB atrophy, which interacts with lesion size to impact both written and oral PS. (JINS, 2016, 23, 1–11)
Placebo responses raise significant challenges for the design of clinical trials. We report changes in agitation outcomes in the placebo arm of a recent trial of citalopram for agitation in Alzheimer's disease (CitAD).
In the CitAD study, all participants and caregivers received a psychosocial intervention and 92 were assigned to placebo for nine weeks. Outcomes included Neurobehavioral Rating Scale agitation subscale (NBRS-A), modified AD Cooperative Study-Clinical Global Impression of Change (CGIC), Cohen-Mansfield Agitation Inventory (CMAI), the Neuropsychiatric Inventory (NPI) Agitation/Aggression domain (NPI A/A) and Total (NPI-Total) and ADLs. Continuous outcomes were analyzed with mixed-effects modeling and dichotomous outcomes with logistic regression.
Agitation outcomes improved over nine weeks: NBRS-A mean (SD) decreased from 7.8 (3.0) at baseline to 5.4 (3.2), CMAI from 28.7 (6.7) to 26.7 (7.4), NPI A/A from 8.0 (2.4) to 4.9 (3.8), and NPI-Total from 37.3 (17.7) to 28.4 (22.1). The proportion of CGI-C agitation responders ranged from 21 to 29% and was significantly different from zero. MMSE improved from 14.4 (6.9) to 15.7 (7.2) and ADLs similarly improved. Most of the improvement was observed by three weeks and was sustained through nine weeks. The major predictor of improvement in each agitation measure was a higher baseline score in that measure.
We observed significant placebo response which may be due to regression to the mean, response to a psychosocial intervention, natural course of symptoms, or nonspecific benefits of participation in a trial.
Given the substantial overlap in cognitive dysfunction between bipolar disorder (BD) and schizophrenia (SZ), we examined the utility of the MATRICS Consensus Cognitive Battery (MCCB)—developed for use in SZ—for the measurement of cognition in patients with BD with psychosis (BDP) and its association with community functioning. The MCCB, Multnomah Community Ability Scale, and measures of clinical symptoms were administered to participants with BDP (n=56), SZ (n=37), and healthy controls (HC) (n=57). Groups were compared on clinical and cognitive measures; linear regressions examined associations between MCCB and community functioning. BDP and SZ groups performed significantly worse than HC on most neurocognitive domains; BDP and HC did not differ on Social Cognition. Patients with BDP performed better than patients with SZ on most cognitive measures, although groups only differed on social cognition, working memory, verbal memory, and the composite after controlling for clinical variables. MCCB was not associated with community functioning. The MCCB is an appropriate measure of neurocognition in BDP but does not appear to capture social cognitive deficits in this population. The addition of appropriate social cognitive measures is recommended. (JINS, 2015, 21, 468–472)
Ecological niche modeling (ENM) is a quantitative approach to predict species’ abiotic requirements. It is a correlative technique, requiring geographically explicit information on species occurrences and the suites of environmental conditions experienced at each occurrence point. The output of these models is a set of environmental suitability rules that can be projected geographically and through time to test biogeographic, ecologic, and evolutionary hypotheses. Although developed by biologists and used extensively in the modern, ENM is in its early stages of application to the deep-time fossil record (hence PaleoENM). In part its limited use in the fossil record thus far reflects the methodological challenge of constructing paleoenvironmental layers needed for PaleoENM analysis, whereas in the modern these layers are available from large public databases (e.g., WorldClim). This paper provides a contextual and methodological framework for appropriately applying PaleoENM, including best practices for developing species occurrence and paleoenvironmental data sets for PaleoENM analyses.