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Gonorrhoea cases in women have been rising in Australia in the 2010s but the cause of the increase is not well understood. This cross-sectional study aimed to describe the characteristics of genital gonorrhoea infection in women attending the Melbourne Sexual Health Centre, Australia. Gonorrhoea cases were diagnosed by nucleic acid amplification test (NAAT) and/or culture. Genitourinary specimens were obtained in 12 869 clinic visits in women aged 16 years or above between August 2017 and August 2018. Genital gonorrhoea was detected in 142 (1.1%) of the visits. Almost half of the cases were asymptomatic, 47.9% [95% confidence interval (CI) 39.8–56.1%]; yellow, green or pus-like vaginal discharge was present in 11.3% (95% CI 7.0–17.6%) and other genital symptoms in 40.8% (95% CI 33.1–49.1%) of the cases. The mean time between last sexual contact and onset of symptoms was 7.3 days and between the onset of symptoms to presentation to the clinic was 12.1 days. Half of the cases of genital gonorrhoea among women are asymptomatic and these cases would have been missed by testing of only symptomatic women. Further epidemiological and behavioural research is required to understand the temporal changes in sexual practices among women in Australia.
Casein glycomacropeptide (CGMP) is a bioactive milk-derived peptide with potential anti-inflammatory effects. Animal studies suggest that CGMP may work by altering gut microbiota composition and enhancing butyrate production. Its effects on intestinal homeostasis, microbiota and metabolites in humans are unknown. The aim of the present study was to assess both the intestinal and systemic immunomodulatory effects of orally ingested CGMP. We hypothesised that a daily oral CGMP intake would reduce high-sensitive C-reactive protein in healthy adults. In a single-centre limited but randomised, double-blinded, reference-controlled study, we compared the effects of a four-week intervention of either 25 grams of oral powder-based chocolate-flavoured CGMP or a reference drink. We included twenty-four healthy adults who all completed the study. CGMP had no systemic or intestinal immunomodulatory effects compared with a reference drink, either with regard to high-sensitive C-reactive protein, or faecal calprotectin level, faecal microbiota composition or faecal short-chain fatty acid content. CGMP ingestion did not affect satiety or body weight, and it caused no severe adverse events. The palatability of CGMP was acceptable and adherence was high. CGMP did not induce or change gastrointestinal symptoms. In conclusion, we found no immunomodulatory effects of CGMP in healthy adults. In a minor group of healthy adults, oral ingestion of 25 grams of CGMP during four weeks was safe, well tolerated, had acceptable palatability, and was without any effects on body weight.
Despite a growing understanding of disorders of consciousness following severe brain injury, the association between long-term impairment of consciousness, spontaneous brain oscillations, and underlying subcortical damage, and the ability of such information to aid patient diagnosis, remains incomplete.
Cross-sectional observational sample of 116 patients with a disorder of consciousness secondary to brain injury, collected prospectively at a tertiary center between 2011 and 2013. Multimodal analyses relating clinical measures of impairment, electroencephalographic measures of spontaneous brain activity, and magnetic resonance imaging data of subcortical atrophy were conducted in 2018.
In the final analyzed sample of 61 patients, systematic associations were found between electroencephalographic power spectra and subcortical damage. Specifically, the ratio of beta-to-delta relative power was negatively associated with greater atrophy in regions of the bilateral thalamus and globus pallidus (both left > right) previously shown to be preferentially atrophied in chronic disorders of consciousness. Power spectrum total density was also negatively associated with widespread atrophy in regions of the left globus pallidus, right caudate, and in the brainstem. Furthermore, we showed that the combination of demographics, encephalographic, and imaging data in an analytic framework can be employed to aid behavioral diagnosis.
These results ground, for the first time, electroencephalographic presentation detected with routine clinical techniques in the underlying brain pathology of disorders of consciousness and demonstrate how multimodal combination of clinical, electroencephalographic, and imaging data can be employed in potentially mitigating the high rates of misdiagnosis typical of this patient cohort.
Antarctica's ice shelves modulate the grounded ice flow, and weakening of ice shelves due to climate forcing will decrease their ‘buttressing’ effect, causing a response in the grounded ice. While the processes governing ice-shelf weakening are complex, uncertainties in the response of the grounded ice sheet are also difficult to assess. The Antarctic BUttressing Model Intercomparison Project (ABUMIP) compares ice-sheet model responses to decrease in buttressing by investigating the ‘end-member’ scenario of total and sustained loss of ice shelves. Although unrealistic, this scenario enables gauging the sensitivity of an ensemble of 15 ice-sheet models to a total loss of buttressing, hence exhibiting the full potential of marine ice-sheet instability. All models predict that this scenario leads to multi-metre (1–12 m) sea-level rise over 500 years from present day. West Antarctic ice sheet collapse alone leads to a 1.91–5.08 m sea-level rise due to the marine ice-sheet instability. Mass loss rates are a strong function of the sliding/friction law, with plastic laws cause a further destabilization of the Aurora and Wilkes Subglacial Basins, East Antarctica. Improvements to marine ice-sheet models have greatly reduced variability between modelled ice-sheet responses to extreme ice-shelf loss, e.g. compared to the SeaRISE assessments.
Compulsory admission procedures of patients with mental disorders vary between countries in Europe. The Ethics Committee of the European Psychiatric Association (EPA) launched a survey on involuntary admission procedures of patients with mental disorders in 40 countries to gather information from all National Psychiatric Associations that are members of the EPA to develop recommendations for improving involuntary admission processes and promote voluntary care.
The survey focused on legislation of involuntary admissions and key actors involved in the admission procedure as well as most common reasons for involuntary admissions.
We analyzed the survey categorical data in themes, which highlight that both medical and legal actors are involved in involuntary admission procedures.
We conclude that legal reasons for compulsory admission should be reworded in order to remove stigmatization of the patient, that raising awareness about involuntary admission procedures and patient rights with both patients and family advocacy groups is paramount, that communication about procedures should be widely available in lay-language for the general population, and that training sessions and guidance should be available for legal and medical practitioners. Finally, people working in the field need to be constantly aware about the ethical challenges surrounding compulsory admissions.
This study investigated whether the duration and type of screen time (ST) (TV viewing, recreational computer use, video gaming) is longitudinally associated with z-BMI and if these relationships are mediated by disordered eating (emotional, restrained).
At baseline, participants were n 1197 (T1; 60 % female) adolescents (mean age = 13·51 years) who completed surveys over 2 years. ST was assessed by a self-reported measure created by the investigative team, while emotional and restrained eating was measured by the Dutch Eating Behaviour Questionnaire (DEB-Q). Height and weight were objectively measured to quantify z-BMI.
Thirty-one public and two private schools from the region of Ottawa, Canada.
Students in grades 7–12.
Parallel multiple mediation analyses revealed that more time spent watching TV at baseline is associated with higher z-BMI at T3 (total effect; B = 0·19, se = 0·07, P = 0·01, 95 % CI 0·05, 0·34), but no relationships were observed for total ST exposure or other types of ST and z-BMI. Disordered eating did not mediate the positive association between baseline TV viewing and z-BMI at T3.
TV viewing was longitudinally associated with higher z-BMI in a community-based sample of adolescents, but disordered eating behaviours did not mediate this relationship. However, other non-pathological eating behaviours may mediate the association between ST and obesity and warrant further investigation. Finding suggests that targeting reduction in youth’s TV viewing may be an effective component in the prevention of childhood obesity.
Despite abundant research on the potential causal influence of childhood maltreatment (CM) on psychological maladaptation in adulthood, almost none has implemented the discordant twin design as a means of examining the role of such experiences in later disordered gambling (DG) while accounting for genetic and family environmental confounds. The present study implemented such an approach to disentangle the potential causal and familial factors that may account for the association between CM and DG.
Participants were 3750 twins from the Australian Twin Registry [Mage = 37.60 (s.d. = 2.31); 58% female]. CM and DG were assessed separately via two semi-structured telephone interviews. Random-intercept generalized linear mixed models were fit to the data; zygosity, sex, educational attainment, childhood psychiatric disorder, adult antisocial behavior, and alcohol use disorder (AUD) were included as covariates.
Neither quasi-causal nor familial effects of CM predicted DG after adjusting for covariates. Educational attainment appeared to reduce the risk of DG while AUD appeared to increase risk; evidence also emerged for familial effects of antisocial behavior on DG. Post-hoc analyses revealed a familial effect of CM on antisocial behavior, indicating that the association between CM and DG identified in unadjusted models and in prior studies may be accounted for by genetic and shared family environmental effects of antisociality.
These findings add to the meager literature showing that CM does not exert a causal effect on DG, and present novel evidence that familial effects of antisocial behavior may account for the association between CM and DG identified in extant non-twin research.
We implemented universal severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) testing of patients undergoing surgical procedures as a means to conserve personal protective equipment (PPE). The rate of asymptomatic coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) was <0.5%, which suggests that early local public health interventions were successful. Although our protocol was resource intensive, it prevented exposures to healthcare team members.
The concentration of radiocarbon (14C) differs between ocean and atmosphere. Radiocarbon determinations from samples which obtained their 14C in the marine environment therefore need a marine-specific calibration curve and cannot be calibrated directly against the atmospheric-based IntCal20 curve. This paper presents Marine20, an update to the internationally agreed marine radiocarbon age calibration curve that provides a non-polar global-average marine record of radiocarbon from 0–55 cal kBP and serves as a baseline for regional oceanic variation. Marine20 is intended for calibration of marine radiocarbon samples from non-polar regions; it is not suitable for calibration in polar regions where variability in sea ice extent, ocean upwelling and air-sea gas exchange may have caused larger changes to concentrations of marine radiocarbon. The Marine20 curve is based upon 500 simulations with an ocean/atmosphere/biosphere box-model of the global carbon cycle that has been forced by posterior realizations of our Northern Hemispheric atmospheric IntCal20 14C curve and reconstructed changes in CO2 obtained from ice core data. These forcings enable us to incorporate carbon cycle dynamics and temporal changes in the atmospheric 14C level. The box-model simulations of the global-average marine radiocarbon reservoir age are similar to those of a more complex three-dimensional ocean general circulation model. However, simplicity and speed of the box model allow us to use a Monte Carlo approach to rigorously propagate the uncertainty in both the historic concentration of atmospheric 14C and other key parameters of the carbon cycle through to our final Marine20 calibration curve. This robust propagation of uncertainty is fundamental to providing reliable precision for the radiocarbon age calibration of marine based samples. We make a first step towards deconvolving the contributions of different processes to the total uncertainty; discuss the main differences of Marine20 from the previous age calibration curve Marine13; and identify the limitations of our approach together with key areas for further work. The updated values for ΔR, the regional marine radiocarbon reservoir age corrections required to calibrate against Marine20, can be found at the data base http://calib.org/marine/.
Radiocarbon (14C) ages cannot provide absolutely dated chronologies for archaeological or paleoenvironmental studies directly but must be converted to calendar age equivalents using a calibration curve compensating for fluctuations in atmospheric 14C concentration. Although calibration curves are constructed from independently dated archives, they invariably require revision as new data become available and our understanding of the Earth system improves. In this volume the international 14C calibration curves for both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres, as well as for the ocean surface layer, have been updated to include a wealth of new data and extended to 55,000 cal BP. Based on tree rings, IntCal20 now extends as a fully atmospheric record to ca. 13,900 cal BP. For the older part of the timescale, IntCal20 comprises statistically integrated evidence from floating tree-ring chronologies, lacustrine and marine sediments, speleothems, and corals. We utilized improved evaluation of the timescales and location variable 14C offsets from the atmosphere (reservoir age, dead carbon fraction) for each dataset. New statistical methods have refined the structure of the calibration curves while maintaining a robust treatment of uncertainties in the 14C ages, the calendar ages and other corrections. The inclusion of modeled marine reservoir ages derived from a three-dimensional ocean circulation model has allowed us to apply more appropriate reservoir corrections to the marine 14C data rather than the previous use of constant regional offsets from the atmosphere. Here we provide an overview of the new and revised datasets and the associated methods used for the construction of the IntCal20 curve and explore potential regional offsets for tree-ring data. We discuss the main differences with respect to the previous calibration curve, IntCal13, and some of the implications for archaeology and geosciences ranging from the recent past to the time of the extinction of the Neanderthals.
Agricultural activities have imposed significant impacts on water resources, leading to hypoxic zones and harmful algal blooms all over the world. Government agencies, nongovernmental organizations, and individuals have been making various efforts to reduce this non-point source pollution. Among those efforts, even the more cost-effective examples of performance-based environmental payment programs generally have low participation rates. We investigate the effects of externalities in farmers’ decisions on neighboring farms, incorporating both a knowledge spillover effect and a positive environmental outcome externality of farmers’ best-management practice (BMP) adoption decisions. Our focus is on how these effects may influence the outcome of performance-based payment programs and how policy makers might recognize these effects in the design of cost-effective policies to promote program participation and BMP adoption. Rather than imposing an assumption of profit-maximization or forward-looking behavior, we allow outcomes to emerge from interactions among neighboring farmers. We recommend cost-effective policies across communities depending on their composition. It is more cost-effective to target communities with fewer innovators and/or target the programs towards the least-innovative individuals.
The Handbook of Behavior Change is the first wide-ranging compendium of theory- and evidence-based research and practice on behavior change. It provides scientists, students, and practitioners with the current evidence on behavior change and expert advice on how to develop, evaluate, and implement behavior change interventions. The handbook also sets an agenda for future research on behavior change theory and practice across multiple behaviors, contexts, and populations. This chapter outlines emerging issues and future research directions arising from the handbook. The chapter stresses the importance of theory development, including the need for greater emphasis on ecological and social theories; clearer descriptions and operationalizations of behavior change theories; and increased application of interdisciplinary approaches. Future research on intervention development should conduct more comprehensive intervention fidelity assessments; adopt novel means to improve the translation, feasibility, and optimization of interventions; ensure consideration of ethical issues in behavior change research; routinely evaluate mechanisms of action in behavior change interventions; and apply complex systems approaches to behavior change. “Best-practice” guidance on behavior change should consider emerging methods and approaches to behavior change; implement trials to evaluate the long-term maintenance of behavior change; and develop core curricula on behavior change to educate the next generation of scientists and practitioners.
A preponderance of theories have been adopted to identify the determinants of behavior. Despite claims of generalizability, research applying these theories has identified gaps or boundary conditions that delimit their application. Theory integration provides one means to address these gaps. This chapter outlines the contribution of integrated theories to advancing knowledge of behavior change. Four approaches to theory integration are identified and summarized: additional constructs, core constructs, expert consensus, and utility-based approaches. Theory integration is often motivated by the need to reduce redundancy in constructs across existing theories and improve their predictive power to arrive at optimally comprehensive, parsimonious, explanations of behavior. Examples of integrated theories are provided and how they have contributed to theory development outlined. Behavior change interventions based on integrated theory comprise multiple techniques that target change in the constructs that set the integrated theory apart from its constituent theories. While some interventions based on integrated theories have demonstrated efficacy in changing behavior, future research on integrated theories needs to adopt factorial designs that independently target change in integrated theory constructs. Such research will demonstrate the independent and interactive effects of techniques based on the integrated theory on behavior and on measures of the targeted theory construct.
Social problems in many domains, including health, education, social relationships, and the workplace, have their origins in human behavior. The documented links between behavior and social problems have sparked interest in governments and organizations to develop effective interventions to promote behavior change. The Handbook of Behavior Change provides comprehensive coverage of contemporary theory, research, and practice on behavior change. The handbook incorporates theory- and evidence-based approaches to behavior change with chapters from leading theorists, researchers, and practitioners from multiple disciplines, including psychology, sociology, behavioral science, economics, and implementation science. Chapters are organized into three parts: (1) Theory and Behavior Change; (2) Methods and Processes of Behavior Change: Intervention Development, Application, and Translation; and (3) Behavior Change Interventions: Practical Guides to Behavior Change. This chapter provides an overview of the theory- and evidence-based approaches of the handbook, introduces the content of the handbook, and provides suggestions on how the handbook may be used by different readers. The handbook aims to provide all interested in behavior change, including researchers and students, practitioners, and policy makers, with up-to-date knowledge on behavior change and guidance on how to develop effective interventions to change behavior in different populations and contexts.