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The first aim of this study was to provide prevalence suicidal feelings over time (past week, past month, past year and lifetime) in a population-based sample of old to very old adults without dementia. Does prevalence change with rising age? The second aim was to examine the fluctuation of suicidal feelings over time. How does this coincide with depression status?
Data were derived from the Gothenburg H70 Birth Cohort Studies (the H70 studies) which are multidisciplinary longitudinal studies on ageing. A representative sample of adults in Gothenburg, Sweden with birth years 1901–1944 were invited to take part in a longitudinal health study on ageing and participated at one or more occasions during 1986–2014. The sample consisted of 6668 observations originating from 3972 participants without dementia between the ages of 70 and 108, including 1604 participants with multiple examination times. Suicidal feelings were examined during a psychiatric interview using the Paykel questions (life not worth living, death wishes, thoughts of taking own life, seriously considered taking life, attempted suicide).
Prevalence figures for suicidal feelings of any severity were as follows: past week 4.8%, past month 6.7%, past year 11.2% and lifetime 25.2%. Prevalence rates increased with age in the total group and in women but not in men. Suicidal feelings were common in participants with concurrent major or minor depression, but over a third of the participants who reported suicidal feelings did not fulfil criteria for these diagnoses nor did they present elevated mean depressive symptom scores. The majority of participants consistently reported no experience of suicidal feelings over multiple examination times, but fluctuation was more common in women compared with men.
Suicidal feelings in late-life are uncommon in individuals without depression indicating that such behaviour is not a widespread, normative phenomenon. However, such feelings may occur outside the context of depression.
As children learn language, they spontaneously imitate the speech of those around them. This article investigates the new words that five children imitated between 1 and 2 years of age. Children were more likely to imitate new words as they aged and as their productive language developed. After controlling for age, children also were more likely to imitate new words that were shorter and with high neighborhood densities, and that contained sounds the children had previously produced accurately. Together, the findings demonstrate that both the patterns of the target words and children's productive abilities are predictors of children's imitative speech. This supports models of language development where there are influences stemming not only from phonological and lexical representations, but also from phonetic representations.
We study data from an organization in which fund managers privately share and discuss detailed investment recommendations. Buy recommendations generate positive abnormal returns, and sell recommendations result in negative abnormal returns. In the context of these results, we explore an important economic question: Why do skilled investors share profitable ideas with others? Evidence suggests that the managers in our sample share to receive feedback on their ideas and to attract additional arbitrageur capital to the securities they recommend in order to correct mispricings.
Chronic low grade inflammation is considered to contribute to the development of experimental diabetic retinopathy (DR). We recently demonstrated that lack of CD40 in mice ameliorates the upregulation of inflammatory molecules in the diabetic retina and prevented capillary degeneration, a hallmark of experimental diabetic retinopathy. Herein, we investigated the contribution of CD40 to diabetes-induced reductions in retinal function via the electroretinogram (ERG) to determine if inflammation plays a role in the development of ERG defects associated with diabetes. We demonstrate that diabetic CD40−/− mice are not protected from reduction to the ERG b-wave despite failing to upregulate inflammatory molecules in the retina. Our data therefore supports the hypothesis that retinal dysfunction found in diabetics occurs independent of the induction of inflammatory processes.
Measures of social cognition are increasingly being applied to psychopathology, including studies of schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders. Tests of social cognition present unique challenges for international adaptations. The Mayer–Salovey–Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test, Managing Emotions Branch (MSCEIT-ME) is a commonly-used social cognition test that involves the evaluation of social scenarios presented in vignettes.
This paper presents evaluations of translations of this test in six different languages based on representative samples from the relevant countries. The goal was to identify items from the MSCEIT-ME that show different response patterns across countries using indices of discrepancy and content validity criteria. An international version of the MSCEIT-ME scoring was developed that excludes items that showed undesirable properties across countries.
We then confirmed that this new version had better performance (i.e. less discrepancy across regions) in international samples than the version based on the original norms. Additionally, it provides scores that are comparable to ratings based on local norms.
This paper shows that it is possible to adapt complex social cognitive tasks so they can provide valid data across different cultural contexts.
Missing outcome data plague many randomized experiments. Common solutions rely on ignorability assumptions that may not be credible in all applications. We propose a method for confronting missing outcome data that makes fairly weak assumptions but can still yield informative bounds on the average treatment effect. Our approach is based on a combination of the double sampling design and nonparametric worst-case bounds. We derive a worst-case bounds estimator under double sampling and provide analytic expressions for variance estimators and confidence intervals. We also propose a method for covariate adjustment using poststratification and a sensitivity analysis for nonignorable missingness. Finally, we illustrate the utility of our approach using Monte Carlo simulations and a placebo-controlled randomized field experiment on the effects of persuasion on social attitudes with survey-based outcome measures.
Randomized experiments commonly compare subjects receiving a treatment to subjects receiving a placebo. An alternative design, frequently used in field experimentation, compares subjects assigned to an untreated baseline group to subjects assigned to a treatment group, adjusting statistically for the fact that some members of the treatment group may fail to receive the treatment. This article shows the potential advantages of a three-group design (baseline, placebo, and treatment). We present a maximum likelihood estimator of the treatment effect for this three-group design and illustrate its use with a field experiment that gauges the effect of prerecorded phone calls on voter turnout. The three-group design offers efficiency advantages over two-group designs while at the same time guarding against unanticipated placebo effects (which would undermine the placebo-treatment comparison) and unexpectedly low rates of compliance with the treatment assignment (which would undermine the baseline-treatment comparison).
Regression discontinuity (RD) designs enable researchers to estimate causal effects using observational data. These causal effects are identified at the point of discontinuity that distinguishes those observations that do or do not receive the treatment. One challenge in applying RD in practice is that data may be sparse in the immediate vicinity of the discontinuity. Expanding the analysis to observations outside this immediate vicinity may improve the statistical precision with which treatment effects are estimated, but including more distant observations also increases the risk of bias. Model specification is another source of uncertainty; as the bandwidth around the cutoff point expands, linear approximations may break down, requiring more flexible functional forms. Using data from a large randomized experiment conducted by Gerber, Green, and Larimer (2008), this study attempts to recover an experimental benchmark using RD and assesses the uncertainty introduced by various aspects of model and bandwidth selection. More generally, we demonstrate how experimental benchmarks can be used to gauge and improve the reliability of RD analyses.
Soda consumption is high in the USA, especially among minorities and individuals of lower socio-economic status (SES); this may be due to its affordable price in relation to healthier alternatives. The objective of the present study was to examine geospatial variation in price of milk and soda, and the price of milk relative to soda, by neighbourhood SES and proportion of Hispanic and black individuals.
Retailer soda and milk prices (n 2987; Information Resources, Inc. Academic Data Set 2004–2011) were linked to census block group sociodemographic characteristics (American Community Survey 2005–2009). Linear hierarchical regression models were used to adjust for confounders.
Large chain supermarkets and superstores (n 1743) in forty-one states and 1694 block groups (USA).
For equivalent fluid ounces, price of soda on average was 62 % lower than milk ($US 0·23 v. $US 0·63 per serving) and there was high dispersion in milk price across geographic areas. After adjustment for confounding, neighbourhoods with a higher concentration of black and Hispanic individuals tended to have lower soda prices and higher milk prices (−$US 0·001 and +$US 0·007 in price per serving, respectively, for a one quintile increase in black/Hispanic population), while soda and milk both became less expensive as SES decreased (–$US 0·002 and −$US 0·015 in serving price per one sd decrease in SES index, respectively).
Neighbourhoods with a higher concentration of blacks and Hispanics may be at greater risk of higher soda consumption due to more affordable prices, in absolute terms and relative to the price of milk.
Single pulse studies of pulsar radio emission provide a window into the time dependent behavior of the radio loud region. I have analyzed a series of precision polarimetric observations of pulsar B0611+22 to determine the geometry of the emission region. The observations are consistent with a central core emission region, and a periodically present conal component. This identification leads to the surprising result that all emission is from the leading half of the polar cap.
Multi-frequency, single-pulse polarimetric observations of the Vela pulsar have been made using the VLA. These high time resolution measurements allow us to probe the geometry, and the time dependent characteristics of the radio emission region. Evidence for multiple emission components with differing spectral indices is found.
The number of separable cognitive dimensions in schizophrenia has been debated. Guided by the extant factor analytic literature, the NIMH Measurement and Treatment Research to Improve Cognition in Schizophrenia (MATRICS) initiative selected seven cognitive domains relevant to treatment studies in schizophrenia: speed of processing, attention/vigilance, working memory, verbal learning, visual learning, reasoning and problem solving, and social cognition. These domains are assessed in the MATRICS Consensus Cognitive Battery (MCCB). The aim of this study was to conduct a confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) of the beta battery of the MCCB to compare the fit of the MATRICS consensus seven-domain model to other models in the current literature on cognition in schizophrenia.
Using data from 281 schizophrenia outpatients, we compared the seven correlated factors model with alternative models. Specifically, we compared the 7-factor model to (a) a single-factor model, (b) a three correlated factors model including speed of processing, working memory, and general cognition, and (c) a hierarchical model in which seven first-order factors loaded onto a second-order general cognitive factor.
Multiple fit indices indicated the seven correlated factors model was the best fit for the data and provided significant improvement in model fit beyond the comparison models.
These results support the assessment of these seven cognitive dimensions in clinical trials of interventions to improve cognition in schizophrenia. Because these cognitive factors are separable to some degree, it is plausible that specific interventions may have differential effects on the domains.
Streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetes is associated with reductions in the electrical response of the outer retina and retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) to light. Aldose reductase (AR) is the first enzyme required in the polyol-mediated metabolism of glucose, and AR inhibitors have been shown to improve diabetes-induced electroretinogram (ERG) defects. Here, we used control and AR−/− mice to determine if genetic inactivation of this enzyme likewise inhibits retinal electrophysiological defects observed in a mouse model of type 1 diabetes. STZ was used to induce hyperglycemia and type 1 diabetes. Diabetic and age-matched nondiabetic controls of each genotype were maintained for 22 weeks, after which ERGs were used to measure the light-evoked components of the RPE (dc-ERG) and the neural retina (a-wave, b-wave). In comparison to their nondiabetic controls, wildtype (WT) and AR−/− diabetic mice displayed significant decreases in the c-wave, fast oscillation, and off response components of the dc-ERG but not in the light peak response. Nondiabetic AR−/− mice displayed larger ERG component amplitudes than did nondiabetic WT mice; however, the amplitude of dc-ERG components in diabetic AR−/− animals were similar to WT diabetics. ERG a-wave amplitudes were not reduced in either diabetic group, but b-wave amplitudes were lower in WT and AR−/−diabetic mice. These findings demonstrate that the light-induced responses of the RPE and outer retina are disrupted in diabetic mice, but these defects are not due to photoreceptor dysfunction, nor are they ameliorated by deletion of AR. This latter finding suggests that benefits observed in other studies utilizing pharmacological inhibitors of AR might have been secondary to off-target effects of the drugs.
At the present time, there is a trend towards performing open heart surgery at a younger age. Myocardium of infants has been thought to be more vulnerable to cardiopulmonary bypass in comparison with adults. For this study, we evaluated the degree of myocardial injury by measurement of cardiac troponin levels in infants in comparison with older children for similar surgeries.
Serum was collected before bypass, after bypass, and daily after surgery and serum cardiac troponin I level (micrograms per litre). The demographic data, cardiac diagnoses, types of surgery performed, and peri-operative parameters were collected.
Of the 21 children enrolled consecutively, five were infants. Among the 21 patients, four patients had post-operative peak troponin values greater than 100 (three were infants) and all four patients survived and had normal left ventricular systolic function upon discharge echocardiogram. The five infants had peak troponin levels of 222.3, 202, 129, 26.7, and 82.3. The post-operative peak troponin levels were significantly higher in infants (mean 132.5 with a standard deviation of 81.6) than in the older children (mean 40.3 with a standard deviation of 33.4), although there was no significant difference in bypass time, bypass temperature, cross-clamp time, or the length of stay in the intensive care unit between the two age groups.
Higher troponin release is seen in infants in comparison with older children after bypass for similar surgeries. A troponin level greater than 100 after bypass does not necessarily predict death or a severe cardiovascular event in the very young.