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To examine the effectiveness of an Internet Based Therapy (IBT) for Bulimia Nervosa (BN), when compared to a brief psychoeducational group therapy (PET) or a waiting list (WL).
93 female BN patients, diagnosed according to DSM-IV criteria. An experimental group (31 IBT patients) was compared to two groups (31 PET and 31 WL). PET and WL were matched to the IBT group in terms of age, disorder duration, previous treatments and severity. All patients completed assesment, prior and after treatment.
Considering IBT, mean scores were lower at the end of treatment for some EDI scales and BITE symptoms scale, while the mean BMI was higher at post-therapy. Main predictors of good IBT outcome were higher scores in EDI perfectionism and higher scores on reward dependence. Drop-out was related to higher SCL-obsessive/compulsive (p=0.045) and novelty seeking (p=0.044) scores and lower reward dependence (p=0.018). At the end of the treatment bingeing and vomiting abstinence rates (22.6% for IBT, 33.3% for PET, and 0.0% for WL; p=0.003) and drop-out rates (35.5% IBT, 12.9% PET and 0% WL; p= 0.001) differed significantly between groups. While the concrete comparison between the two treatments (IBT and PET) did not evidence significant differences for success proportions (p=0.375), statistical differences for drop-out rates (p=0.038) were obtained.
The results of this study suggest that an online self-help approach appears to be a valid treatment option for BN, especially for people who present lower severity of their eating disorder (ED) symptomatology and some specific personality traits.
Currently there is no consensus regarding how long anti-psychotics medication should be continued following a first/single psychotic episode. Clinically patients often request discontinuation after a period of remission. This is one of the first double-blind randomized-controlled studies designed to address the issue.
Patients with DSM-IV schizophrenia and related psychoses (excluding substance induced psychosis) who remitted well following a first/single-episode, and had remained well on maintenance medication for one year, were randomized to receive either maintenance therapy with quetiapine (400 mg/day), or placebo for 12 months. Relapse was defined by the presence of (i) an increase in at least one of the following PANSS psychotic symptom items to a threshold score (delusion, hallucinatory behaviour, conceptual disorganization, unusual thought content, suspiciousness); (ii) CGI Severity of Illness 3 or above; and (iii) CGI Improvement 5 or above.
178 patients were randomized. 144 patients completed the study (80.9%). The relapse rate was 33.7% (30/89) for the maintenance group and 66.3% (59/89) for the placebo group (log-rank test, chi-square=13.328, p<0.001). Relapse was not related to age or gender. Other significant predictors of relapse include medication status, pre-morbid schizotypal traits, verbal memory and soft neurological signs.
There is a substantial risk of relapse if medication is discontinued in remitted first-episode psychosis patients following one year of maintenance therapy. On the contrary 33.7% of patients discontinued medication and remained well.
Medication discontinuation in remitted single episode patients after a period of maintenance therapy is a major clinical decision and thus the identification of risk factors controlling for medication status is important.
Following a first/single episode with DSM-IV schizophrenia and related psychoses, remitted patients who had remained well on maintenance medication for at least one year were randomized to receive either maintenance therapy (with quetiapine 400 mg/day), or placebo for 12 months.
178 patients were randomized. Relapse rates were 33.7% (30/89) in maintenance group and 66.3% (59/89) in placebo group. Potential predictors were initially identified in univariate Cox regression models (p<0.1) and were subsequently entered into a multivariate Cox regression model for measuring the relapse risk. Significant predictors included patients on placebo (hazard ratio, 0.41; CI, 0.25 – 0.68; p=0.001); having more pre-morbid schizotypal traits (hazard ratio, 2.32; CI, 1.33 – 4.04; p=0.003); scoring lower in the logical memory test (hazard ratio, 0.94; CI, 0.9 – 0.99; p=0.028); and having more soft neurological signs (disinhibition) (hazard ratio, 1.33; CI, 1.02 – 1.74; p=0.039).
Relapse predictors may help to inform clinical decisions about discontinuation of maintenance therapy specifically for patients with a first/single episode psychosis following at least one year of maintenance therapy.
We are grateful to Dr TJ Yao at the Clinical Trials Center, University of Hong Kong, for statistical advice. The study was supported by investigator initiated trial award from AstraZeneca and the Research Grants Council Hong Kong (Project number: 765505).
Background: We assessed long-term health-related quality of life (HRQoL) and functioning in adults receiving onabotulinumtoxinA for CM. Methods: Interim analysis of multicentre, prospective, observational study in adults naïve to botulinum toxin (NCT02502123). Mean change from baseline in Migraine-Specific Quality of Life (MSQ) score (primary); healthcare resource utilization (HRU) and work productivity (secondary) assessed in patients receiving 4 of 7 onabotulinumtoxinA treatments (Tx4; ~10 months). Results: Across treatments (baseline, n=196, post-Tx2, n=173, post-Tx4, n=137), the mean (SD) between-session interval and onabotulinumtoxinA dose was 13.1 weeks and 170.4 (17.2) U, respectively. MSQ scores increased significantly (P<0.0001) (baseline to post-Tx4; all role function domains). Patient percentages declined from baseline to post-Tx2 and post-Tx4 for emergency room visits (17.3%; 9.3%; 6.6%), hospital admissions (3.6%; 2.9%; 1.5%), and headache-related diagnostic testing (35.9%; 15.9%; 8.1%). The percentages of patients employed at baseline (73.5%) and post-Tx4 (72.3%) were similar. Hours worked increased slightly from baseline to post-Tx4 (28.0 [SD=15.4]; 29.4 [SD=16.0]). Headache-related missed work hours decreased (5.9 [SD=9.5]; 2.5 [SD=5.9]). Patients reported less headache-related impact on work productivity from baseline to post-Tx4 (5.4 [SD=2.1] vs 3.9 [SD=2.6]) and ability to perform daily activities (6.1 [SD=2.1] vs 4.2 [SD=2.8]). Conclusions: OnabotulinumtoxinA for CM improved HRQoL and work productivity and reduced HRU.
Mastitis is a costly disease and in many areas of the world, these costs have been quantified to support farmers in their decision making with regard to prevention of mastitis. Although for subsaharan circumstances estimates have been made for the costs of subclinical mastitis (SCM), farm-specific cost estimations comprising both clinical mastitis (CM) and SCM are lacking. In this paper, we quantified failure costs of both CM and SCM on 150 Ethiopian market-oriented dairy farms keeping Holstein Friesian × Zebu breed cows. Data about CM were collected by face-to-face interviews and the prevalence of SCM was estimated for each farm using the California mastitis test. All other relevant information needed to calculate the failure costs, such as the consequences of mastitis and price levels, was collected during the farm visits, except for the parameter for milk production losses due to SCM, which was based on literature estimates and subjected to sensitivity analyses. The average total failure costs of mastitis was estimated to be 4 765 Ethiopian Birr (ETB) (1 ETB = 0.0449 USD) per farm per year of which SCM contributed 54% of the costs. The average total failure costs per lactating cow per farm per year were 1 961 ETB, with a large variation between farms (range 0 to 35 084 ETB). This large variation in failure costs between farms was mainly driven by variation in incidence of CM and prevalence of SCM. Milk production losses made the largest contribution (80%), whereas culling contributed 13% to 17% to the total failure costs. In our estimates, costs of veterinary services, drugs, discarded milk and labour made a minor contribution to the total failure costs of mastitis. Relative to the income of dairy farmers in North Western Ethiopia; the total failure costs of mastitis are high. In general, Ethiopian farmers are aware of the negative consequences of CM, but creating awareness of the high costs of SCM and showing large variation between farmers may be instrumental in motivating farmers to also take preventive measures for SCM.
Global inequity in access to and availability of essential mental health services is well recognized. The mental health treatment gap is approximately 50% in all countries, with up to 90% of people in the lowest-income countries lacking access to required mental health services. Increased investment in global mental health (GMH) has increased innovation in mental health service delivery in LMICs. Situational analyses in areas where mental health services and systems are poorly developed and resourced are essential when planning for research and implementation, however, little guidance is available to inform methodological approaches to conducting these types of studies. This scoping review provides an analysis of methodological approaches to situational analysis in GMH, including an assessment of the extent to which situational analyses include equity in study designs. It is intended as a resource that identifies current gaps and areas for future development in GMH. Formative research, including situational analysis, is an essential first step in conducting robust implementation research, an essential area of study in GMH that will help to promote improved availability of, access to and reach of mental health services for people living with mental illness in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). While strong leadership in this field exists, there remain significant opportunities for enhanced research representing different LMICs and regions.
The links between low socioeconomic status and poor health are well established, yet despite adversity, some individuals with low socioeconomic status appear to avoid these negative consequences through adaptive coping. Previous research found a set of strategies, called shift-and-persist (shifting the self to stressors while persisting by finding meaning), to be particularly adaptive for individuals with low socioeconomic status, who typically face more uncontrollable stressors. This study tested (a) whether perceived social status, similar to objective socioeconomic status, would moderate the link between shift-and-persist and health, and (b) whether a specific uncontrollable stressor, unfair treatment, would similarly moderate the health correlates of shift-and-persist. A sample of 308 youth (Meanage = 13.0, range 8–17), physician diagnosed with asthma, completed measures of shift-and-persist, unfair treatment, asthma control, and quality of life in the lab, and 2 weeks of daily diaries about their asthma symptoms. Parents reported on perceived family social status. Results indicated that shift-and-persist was associated with better asthma profiles, only among youth from families with lower (vs. higher) parent-reported perceived social status. Shift-and-persist was also associated with better asthma profiles, only among youth who experienced more (vs. less) unfair treatment. These findings suggest that the adaptive values of coping strategies for youth with asthma depend on the family's perceived social status and on the stressor experienced.
BACKGROUND: Meningiomas are the most common primary benign brain tumors in adults. Given the extended life expectancy of most meningiomas, consideration of quality of life (QOL) is important when selecting the optimal management strategy. There is currently a dearth of meningioma-specific QOL tools in the literature. OBJECTIVE: In this systematic review, we analyze the prevailing themes and propose toward building a meningioma-specific QOL assessment tool. METHODS: A systematic search was conducted, and only original studies based on adult patients were considered. QOL tools used in the various studies were analyzed for identification of prevailing themes in the qualitative analysis. The quality of the studies was also assessed. RESULTS: Sixteen articles met all inclusion criteria. Fifteen different QOL assessment tools assessed social and physical functioning, psychological, and emotional well-being. Patient perceptions and support networks had a major impact on QOL scores. Surgery negatively affected social functioning in younger patients, while radiation therapy had a variable impact. Any intervention appeared to have a greater negative impact on physical functioning compared to observation. CONCLUSION: Younger patients with meningiomas appear to be more vulnerable within social and physical functioning domains. All of these findings must be interpreted with great caution due to great clinical heterogeneity, limited generalizability, and risk of bias. For meningioma patients, the ideal QOL questionnaire would present outcomes that can be easily measured, presented, and compared across studies. Existing scales can be the foundation upon which a comprehensive, standard, and simple meningioma-specific survey can be prospectively developed and validated.
Introduction: Medical education includes a diverse range of topics and disciplines. For junior clinician educators, it may be difficult to get a grasp of pertinent literature. Our study aims to retrospectively identify whether senior clinician educators (SCEs) and junior clinician educators (JCEs) differ in their selection of what they perceive as key medical education articles. Methods: As a part of the Academic Life in Emergency Medicine (ALiEM) Faculty Incubator program, we developed a series of primer articles for JCEs over the preceding year, designed to enhance their educational growth by identifying and discussing key articles within specific medical education arenas. Each set of articles within the primer series were selected based on data collected from JCEs and SCEs, who ranked the specific articles with respect to their perceived relevancy to the JCEs. ANOVA analysis was performed for each of the nine primer series to determine whether there was a statistically significant difference between senior and junior CEs ratings of articles. Results: 216 total articles were evaluated within the nine different primer topics. Through a multilevel regression analysis of the data, no statistically significant difference was found between the rankings of papers by SCEs and JCEs (95%CI: -0.27, 0.40). However, a subgroup analysis of the data found that 3 of the 9 primers showed statistically significant divergence based on seniority (p<0.05). Conclusion: Based on this data, involvement of JCEs in the consensus-building process was important in identifying divergence in views between JCEs and SCEs in one-third of cases. To our knowledge, no other group have compared whether junior and senior clinical educators may have divergent opinions about the relevance of medical education literature. Our findings suggest that it may be important to involve JCEs in selecting articles that are worthwhile for their learning, since SCEs may not fully understand their needs.
Introduction: Creatine kinase (CK) measurement, despite not being recommended for the diagnosis of a Non-ST Elevation Myocardial Infarction (NSTEMI) is still routinely performed in the emergency department (ED) for the workup of NSTEMI. The diagnostic utility of CK among ED patients with suspected NSTEMI is still not well understood. The objectives of this study were to assess: the additional value of CK in NSTEMI diagnosis and the correlation between the highest CK/TNI values and ejection fraction (EF) on follow-up echocardiography among patients with suspected NSTEMI. Methods: This was a prospective cohort study conducted at the Civic and General Campuses of The Ottawa Hospital from March 2014 to March 2016. We enrolled adults (18 years) for whom troponin (TNI) and CK were ordered for chest pain or non-chest pain symptoms within the past 24 hours concerning for NSTEMI and excluded those with suspected ST-Elevation Myocardial Infarction (STEMI). Primary outcome was a 30-day NSTEMI adjudicated by two blinded physicians. Demographics, medical history, and ED CK/TNI values were collected. We used descriptive statistics and report test diagnostic characteristics. Results: Of the 1,663 patients enrolled, 84 patients (5.1%) suffered NSTEMI. The sensitivity and specificity of CK was 30.9% (95%CI 21.1, 40.8) and 91.4% (95%CI 90.0, 92.8) respectively. The sensitivity and specificity of troponin was 96.4% (95%CI 92.4, 100) and 88.1% (95%CI 86.5, 89.7) respectively. Among 3 (0.2%) patients with missed NSTEMI diagnosis with TNI, CK measurements did not add value. The mean CK values were not significantly different between those with normal and abnormal EF on follow-up (132.4 U/L and 146.3 U/L respectively; p=0.44), whereas the mean TNI values were significantly different (0.5 µg/L and 1.3 µg/L respectively; p=0.046). Conclusion: CK measurements neither provide any additional value in the work-up of NSTEMI in the ED nor correlate with EF on follow-up. Discontinuing routine CK measurements would reduce overall costs and improve resource utilization in the ED, and streamline the management of patients in the ED with chest pain.
Characterizing ruminal parameters in the context of sampling routine and feed efficiency is fundamental to understand the efficiency of feed utilization in the bovine. Therefore, we evaluated microbial and volatile fatty acid (VFA) profiles, rumen papillae epithelial and stratum corneum thickness and rumen pH (RpH) and temperature (RT) in feedlot cattle. In all, 48 cattle (32 steers plus 16 bulls), fed a high moisture corn and haylage-based ration, underwent a productive performance test to determine residual feed intake (RFI) using feed intake, growth, BW and composition traits. Rumen fluid was collected, then RpH and RT logger were inserted 5.5±1 days before slaughter. At slaughter, the logger was recovered and rumen fluid and rumen tissue were sampled. The relative daily time spent in specific RpH and RT ranges were determined. Polynomial regression analysis was used to characterize RpH and RT circadian patterns. Animals were divided into efficient and inefficient groups based on RFI to compare productive performance and ruminal parameters. Efficient animals consumed 1.8 kg/day less dry matter than inefficient cattle (P⩽0.05) while achieving the same productive performance (P⩾0.10). Ruminal bacteria population was higher (P⩽0.05) (7.6×1011v. 4.3×1011 copy number of 16S rRNA gene/ml rumen fluid) and methanogen population was lower (P⩽0.05) (2.3×109v. 4.9×109 copy number of 16S rRNA gene/ml rumen fluid) in efficient compared with inefficient cattle at slaughter with no differences (P⩾0.10) between samples collected on-farm. No differences (P⩾0.10) in rumen fluid VFA were also observed between feed efficiency groups either on-farm or at slaughter. However, increased (P⩽0.05) acetate, and decreased (P⩽0.05) propionate, butyrate, valerate and caproate concentrations were observed at slaughter compared with on-farm. Efficient had increased (P⩽0.05) rumen epithelium thickness (136 v. 126 µm) compared with inefficient cattle. Efficient animals also spent 318% and 93.2% more time (P⩽0.05) in acidotic (4.14% v. 1.30%) (pH⩽5.6) and optimal (5.6<pH<6.0) (8.53% v. 4.42%) RpH range compared with inefficient cattle. The circadian patterns revealed lower (P⩽0.05) RpH and no differences (P⩾0.10) in RT pre-, during, and post-prandial periods in efficient compared with inefficient cattle. In essence, superior feed efficiency in cattle seems linked to rumen features consistent with improved efficiency of feed utilization. Microbial abundance, rumen epithelial histomorphology, and RpH, may serve as indicators for feed efficiency in cattle. The divergences of assessments made on-farm and at slaughter should be considered in the development of proxies for feed efficiency.
Evidence suggests that autism and schizophrenia share similarities in genetic, neuropsychological and behavioural aspects. Although both disorders are associated with theory of mind (ToM) impairments, a few studies have directly compared ToM between autism patients and schizophrenia patients. This study aimed to investigate to what extent high-functioning autism patients and schizophrenia patients share and differ in ToM performance.
Thirty high-functioning autism patients, 30 schizophrenia patients and 30 healthy individuals were recruited. Participants were matched in age, gender and estimated intelligence quotient. The verbal-based Faux Pas Task and the visual-based Yoni Task were utilised to examine first- and higher-order, affective and cognitive ToM. The task/item difficulty of two paradigms was examined using mixed model analyses of variance (ANOVAs). Multiple ANOVAs and mixed model ANOVAs were used to examine group differences in ToM.
The Faux Pas Task was more difficult than the Yoni Task. High-functioning autism patients showed more severely impaired verbal-based ToM in the Faux Pas Task, but shared similar visual-based ToM impairments in the Yoni Task with schizophrenia patients.
The findings that individuals with high-functioning autism shared similar but more severe impairments in verbal ToM than individuals with schizophrenia support the autism–schizophrenia continuum. The finding that verbal-based but not visual-based ToM was more impaired in high-functioning autism patients than schizophrenia patients could be attributable to the varied task/item difficulty between the two paradigms.
Default mode network (DMN) is vulnerable to the effects of APOE genotype. Given the reduced brain volumes and APOE ε 4-related brain changes in elderly carriers, it is less known that whether these changes would influence the functional connectivity and to what extent. This study aimed to examine the functional connectivity within DMN, and its diagnostic value with age-related morphometric alterations considered.
Whole brain and seed-based resting-state functional connectivity (RSFC) analysis were conducted in cognitively normal APOE ε 4 carriers and matched non-carriers (N=38). The absolute values of mean correlation coefficients (z-values) were used as a measure of functional connectivity strength (FCS) between DMN subregions, which were also used to estimate their diagnostic value by receiver-operating characteristic (ROC) curves.
APOE ε 4 carriers demonstrated decreased interhemispheric FCS, particularly between right hippocampal formation (R.HF) and left inferior parietal lobular (L.IPL) (t=3.487, p<0.001). ROC analysis showed that the FCS of R.HF and L.IPL could differentiate APOE ε 4 carriers from healthy counterparts (AUC value=0.734, p=0.025). Moreover, after adjusting the impact of morphometry, the differentiated value of FCS of R.HF and L.IPL was markedly improved (AUC value=0.828, p=0.002).
Our findings suggest that APOE ε 4 allele affects the functional connectivity within posterior DMN, particularly the atrophy-corrected interhemispheric FCS before the clinical expression of neurodegenerative disease.
Inpatients with blood cultures positive for Staphylococcus aureus, Enterococcus faecalis, E. faecium, Streptococcus pneumoniae, S. pyogenes, S. agalactiae, S. anginosus, Streptococcus spp., and Listeria monocytogenes during the 6 months before and after implementation of Verigene Gram-positive blood culture microarray (BC-GP) with an antimicrobial stewardship intervention.
Before the intervention, no rapid diagnostic technology was used or antimicrobial stewardship intervention was undertaken, except for the use of peptide nucleic acid fluorescent in situ hybridization and MRSA agar to identify staphylococcal isolates. After the intervention, all Gram-positive blood cultures underwent BC-GP microarray and the antimicrobial stewardship intervention consisting of real-time notification and pharmacist review.
In total, 513 patients with bacteremia were included in this study: 280 patients with S. aureus, 150 patients with enterococci, 82 patients with stretococci, and 1 patient with L. monocytogenes. The number of antimicrobial switches was similar in the pre–BC-GP (52%; 155 of 300) and post–BC-GP (50%; 107 of 213) periods. The time to antimicrobial switch was significantly shorter in the post–BC-GP group than in the pre–BC-GP group: 48±41 hours versus 75±46 hours, respectively (P<.001). The most common antimicrobial switch was de-escalation and time to de-escalation, was significantly shorter in the post-BC-GP group than in the pre–BC-GP group: 53±41 hours versus 82±48 hours, respectively (P<.001). There was no difference in mortality or hospital length of stay as a result of the intervention.
The combination of a rapid microarray diagnostic test with an antimicrobial stewardship intervention improved time to antimicrobial switch, especially time to de-escalation to optimal therapy, in patients with Gram-positive blood cultures.
Relapse is distressingly common after the first episode of psychosis, yet it is poorly understood and difficult to predict. Investigating changes in cognitive function preceding relapse may provide new insights into the underlying mechanism of relapse in psychosis. We hypothesized that relapse in fully remitted first-episode psychosis patients was preceded by working memory deterioration.
Visual memory and verbal working memory were monitored prospectively in a 1-year randomized controlled trial of remitted first-episode psychosis patients assigned to medication continuation (quetiapine 400 mg/day) or discontinuation (placebo). Relapse (recurrence of positive symptoms of psychosis), visual (Visual Patterns Test) and verbal (Letter–Number span test) working memory and stressful life events were assessed monthly.
Remitted first-episode patients (n = 102) participated in the study. Relapsers (n = 53) and non-relapsers (n = 49) had similar baseline demographic and clinical profiles. Logistic regression analyses indicated relapse was associated with visual working memory deterioration 2 months before relapse [odds ratio (OR) 3.07, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.19–7.92, P = 0.02], more stressful life events 1 month before relapse (OR 2.11, 95% CI 1.20–3.72, P = 0.01) and medication discontinuation (OR 5.52, 95% CI 2.08–14.62, P = 0.001).
Visual working memory deterioration beginning 2 months before relapse in remitted first-episode psychosis patients (not baseline predictor) may reflect early brain dysfunction that heralds a psychotic relapse. The deterioration was found to be unrelated to a worsening of psychotic symptoms preceding relapse. Testable predictors offer insight into the brain processes underlying relapse in psychosis.
During 1990 we surveyed the southern sky using a multi-beam receiver at frequencies of 4850 and 843 MHz. The half-power beamwidths were 4 and 25 arcmin respectively. The finished surveys cover the declination range between +10 and −90 degrees declination, essentially complete in right ascension, an area of 7.30 steradians. Preliminary analysis of the 4850 MHz data indicates that we will achieve a five sigma flux density limit of about 30 mJy. We estimate that we will find between 80 000 and 90 000 new sources above this limit. This is a revised version of the paper presented at the Regional Meeting by the first four authors; the surveys now have been completed.
Negative symptoms and cognitive deficits in schizophrenia are partially overlapping. However, the nature of the relationship between negative symptoms and cognition remains equivocal. Recent reviews have demonstrated the presence of two negative symptom subdomains, diminished emotional expression (DEE) and avolition. In view of this, we sought to clarify the relationship between negative symptoms and cognitive domains.
A total of 687 participants with schizophrenia were assessed on measures of psychopathology and cognition. Three cognitive factors, namely executive function, fluency/memory and speed/vigilance were computed from the cognitive tests. Confirmatory factor analysis was utilized to examine if a one-factor or two-factor negative model was applicable to our sample. Subsequently, the relationships between negative symptoms and cognition were examined using structural equation modeling.
Results demonstrated that the two-factor model fitted the data well. While negative symptoms were mildly to moderately associated with cognition, we found that DEE had unique associations with cognition compared to social avolition, contributing to the validity of the constructs and suggesting the possibility of common underlying substrates in negative symptoms and cognition.
Our study highlighted the need to classify DEE and social avolition separately as both are necessary in refining the complex relationship between negative symptoms and cognition as well as potentially guiding treatment and management of schizophrenia.
Intra-individual variability (IIV) and the change of attentional functions have been reported to be susceptible to both healthy ageing and pathological ageing. The current study aimed to evaluate the IIV of attention and the age-related effect on alerting, orienting, and executive control in cognitively healthy older adults.
We evaluated 145 Chinese older adults (age range of 65–80 years, mean age of 72.41 years) with a comprehensive neuropsychological battery and the Attention network test (ANT). A two-step strategy of analytical methods was used: Firstly, the IIV of older adults was evaluated by the intraindividual coefficient of variation of reaction time (ICV-RT). The correlation between ICV-RT and age was used to evaluate the necessity of subgrouping. Further, the comparisons of ANT performance among three age groups were performed with processing speed adjusted.
Person's correlation revealed significant positive correlations between age and IIV (r = 0.185, p = 0.032), age and executive control (r = 0.253, p = 0.003). Furthermore, one-way ANOVA comparisons among three age groups revealed a significant age-related disturbance on executive control (F = 4.55, p = 0.01), in which oldest group (group with age >75 years) showed less efficient executive control than young-old (group with age 65–70 years) (Conventional score, p = 0.012; Ratio score, p = 0.020).
Advancing age has an effect on both IIV and executive attention in cognitively healthy older adults, suggesting that the disturbance of executive attention is a sensitive indicator to reflect healthy ageing. Its significance to predict further deterioration should be carefully evaluated with prospective studies.
In traditional transit timing variations (TTVs) analysis of multi-planetary systems, the individual TTVs are first derived from transit fitting and later modelled using n-body dynamic simulations to constrain planetary masses. We show that fitting simultaneously the transit light curves with the system dynamics (photo-dynamical model) increases the precision of the TTV measurements and helps constrain the system architecture. We exemplify the advantages of applying this photo-dynamical model to a multi-planetary system found in K2 data very close to 3:2 mean motion resonance, K2-19. In this case the period of the larger TTV variations (libration period) is much longer (>1.5 years) than the duration of the K2 observations (80 days). However, our method allows to detect the short period TTVs produced by the orbital conjunctions between the planets that in turn permits to uniquely characterise the system. Therefore, our method can be used to constrain the masses of near-resonant systems even when the full libration curve is not observed.