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Traditionally, personalised nutrition was delivered at an individual level. However, the concept of delivering tailored dietary advice at a group level through the identification of metabotypes or groups of metabolically similar individuals has emerged. Although this approach to personalised nutrition looks promising, further work is needed to examine this concept across a wider population group. Therefore, the objectives of this study are to: (1) identify metabotypes in a European population and (2) develop targeted dietary advice solutions for these metabotypes. Using data from the Food4Me study (n 1607), k-means cluster analysis revealed the presence of three metabolically distinct clusters based on twenty-seven metabolic markers including cholesterol, individual fatty acids and carotenoids. Cluster 2 was identified as a metabolically healthy metabotype as these individuals had the highest Omega-3 Index (6·56 (sd 1·29) %), carotenoids (2·15 (sd 0·71) µm) and lowest total saturated fat levels. On the basis of its fatty acid profile, cluster 1 was characterised as a metabolically unhealthy cluster. Targeted dietary advice solutions were developed per cluster using a decision tree approach. Testing of the approach was performed by comparison with the personalised dietary advice, delivered by nutritionists to Food4Me study participants (n 180). Excellent agreement was observed between the targeted and individualised approaches with an average match of 82 % at the level of delivery of the same dietary message. Future work should ascertain whether this proposed method could be utilised in a healthcare setting, for the rapid and efficient delivery of tailored dietary advice solutions.
Research shows that cognitive rehabilitation (CR) has the potential to improve goal performance and enhance well-being for people with early stage Alzheimer’s disease (AD). This single subject, multiple baseline design (MBD) research investigated the clinical efficacy of an 8-week individualised CR intervention for individuals with early stage AD.
Three participants with early stage AD were recruited to take part in the study. The intervention consisted of eight sessions of 60–90 minutes of CR. Outcomes included goal performance and satisfaction, quality of life, cognitive and everyday functioning, mood, and memory self-efficacy for participants with AD; and carer burden, general mental health, quality of life, and mood of carers.
Visual analysis of MBD data demonstrated a functional relationship between CR and improvements in participants’ goal performance. Subjective ratings of goal performance and satisfaction increased from baseline to post-test for three participants and were maintained at follow-up for two. Baseline to post-test quality of life scores improved for three participants, whereas cognitive function and memory self-efficacy scores improved for two.
Our findings demonstrate that CR can improve goal performance, and is a socially acceptable intervention that can be implemented by practitioners with assistance from carers between sessions. This study represents one of the promising first step towards filling a practice gap in this area. Further research and randomised-controlled trials are required.
This study explored how coping with war-related traumatic events in Sierra Leone impacted mental health outcomes among 529 youth (aged 10–17 at baseline; 25% female) using longitudinal data from three time points (Time 1 in 2002, Time 2 in 2004, and Time 3 in 2008). We examined two types of coping items (approach and avoidance); used multiple regression models to test their relations with long-term mental health outcomes (internalizing behaviors, externalizing behaviors, adaptive/prosocial behaviors, and posttraumatic stress symptoms); and used mediation analyses to test whether coping explained the relation between previous war exposures (being raped, death of parent(s), or killing/injuring someone during the war) and those outcomes. We found that avoidance coping items were associated with lower internalizing and posttraumatic stress behaviors at Time 3, and provided some evidence of mediating the relation between death of parent(s) during the war and the two outcomes mentioned above. Approach coping was associated with higher Time 3 adaptive/prosocial behaviors, whereas avoidance coping was associated with lower Time 3 adaptive/prosocial behaviors. Avoidance coping may be a protective factor against mental illness, whereas approach coping may be a promotive factor for adaptive/prosocial behaviors in war-affected societies. This study has important implications for designing and implementing mental health interventions for youth in postconflict settings.
The current study investigated use of a controlled misting environment to simulate field conditions that have been implicated in high levels of the malting barley defect, grain skinning. More than 200 spring barley varieties were assessed to identify those varieties that were particularly resistant or susceptible to the defect. Relationships between skinning severity and the traits ear length, floret number, grain number and grain weight were examined among the varieties. In a panel of seven varieties chosen as treatment controls, misting was found to significantly increase skinning severity. The misting treatment had no effect on measured ear traits of these varieties. Among the 200 varieties grown under the misting treatment, there was a continuous spectrum of skinning severities, which were not correlated with ear length, floret number, grain number or grain weight. Using the misting treatment, differences in susceptibility to grain skinning could be determined among varieties. As the misting treatment did not affect measured ear traits, and no correlation was found between ear traits and skinning severity among varieties, the effect of misting on skinning severity must be mediated through other physiological characteristics.
The objective was to study the effect of maternal supplementation with a yeast cell wall-based product containing a mannan-rich fraction (MRF) during gestation and lactation on piglet intestinal gene expression. First parity sows were fed experimental gestation and lactation diets with or without MRF (900 mg/kg). After farrowing, piglets were fostered within treatment, as necessary. Sow and litter production performance data were collected until weaning. On day 10 post farrowing, jejunum samples from piglets were collected for gene expression analysis using the Affymetrix Porcine GeneChip array. Most performance parameters did not differ between the treatments. However, protein (P<0.01), total solids less fat (P<0.03) and the concentration of immunoglobulin G (IgG) in milk were greater (P<0.05) in the MRF-supplemented group. Gene expression results using hierarchical clustering revealed an overall dietary effect. Further analysis elucidated activation of pathways involved in tissue development, functioning and immunity, as well as greater cell proliferation and less migration of cells in the jejunum tissue. In conclusion, feeding the sow MRF during pregnancy and lactation was an effective nutritional strategy to bolster colostrum and milk IgG that are essential for development of piglet immune system and gut. In addition, the gene expression patterns affected by the passive immunity transfer showed indicators that could benefit animal performance long term.
Engineered remediation technologies such as denitrifying bioreactors target single contaminants along a nutrient transfer continuum. However, mixed contaminant discharges to a water body are more common from agricultural systems. Indeed, evidence presented herein indicates that pollution swapping within denitrifying bioreactor systems adds to such deleterious discharges. The present paper proposes a more holistic approach to contaminant remediation on farms, moving from the use of ‘denitrifying bioreactors’ to the concept of a ‘permeable reactive interceptor’ (PRI). Besides management changes, a PRI should contain additional remediation cells for specific contaminants in the form of solutes, particles or gases. Balance equations and case studies representing different geographic areas are presented and used to create weighting factors. Results showed that national legislation with respect to water and gaseous emissions will inform the eventual PRI design. As it will be expensive to monitor a system continuously in a holistic manner, it is suggested that developments in the field of molecular microbial ecology are essential to provide further insight in terms of element dynamics and the environmental controls on biotransformation and retention processes within PRIs. In turn, microbial and molecular fingerprinting could be used as an in-situ cost-effective tool to assess nutrient and gas balances during the operational phases of a PRI.
Nitrification inhibitors are used in agriculture for the purpose of decreasing nitrogen (N) losses, by limiting the microbially mediated oxidation of ammonium (NH4+) to nitrate (NO3−). Successful inhibition of nitrification has been shown in numerous studies, but the extent to which inhibitors affect other N transformations in soil is largely unknown. In the present study, cattle slurry was applied to microcosms of three different grassland soils, with or without the nitrification inhibitor dicyandiamide (DCD). A solution containing NH4+ and NO3−, labelled with 15N either on the NH4+ or the NO3− part, was mixed with the slurry before application. Gross N transformation rates were estimated using a 15N tracing model. In all three soils, DCD significantly inhibited gross autotrophic nitrification, by 79–90%. Gross mineralization of recalcitrant organic N increased significantly with DCD addition in two soils, whereas gross heterotrophic nitrification from the same pool decreased with DCD addition in two soils. Fungal to bacterial ratios were not significantly affected by DCD addition. Total gross mineralization and immobilization increased significantly across the three soils when DCD was used, which suggests that DCD can cause non-target effects on soil N mineralization–immobilization turnover.
Strain measurements were performed on multilayer films of Mo/Ni using x-ray diffraction with the scattering vector at varying degrees of inclination to the surface normal. In-plane variations in the lattice parameters confirm that there are coherency stresses between the Mo and Ni layers. Assuming the Nishiama-Wasserman orientation for the planes of Ni and Mo allowed the calculation of the complete stress state in both materials. The in-plane lattice parameter, the perpendicular lattice parameter and the unstrained lattice parameter have also been derived from the data. The substrate interaction stress which would be necessary to provide a force balance between the layers was calculated. This was found to be in good agreement with the global stress measured from wafer curvature. Preliminary results of modelling of the high angle superlattice lines to extract interfacial roughness in the growth direction are also presented.