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Serotonin (5-HT) is thought to be critical for affect regulation in the brain and many antidepressants are thought to primarily work by altering 5-HT levels. However there has not been a validated means of directly imaging of endogenous 5-HT levels in humans. The main aims of this project are to image the effect of Citalopram on brain endogenous 5-HT levels and to determine the relationship between brain 5-HT and affect regulation.
Thirteen healthy volunteers (mean age 50.9yrs, range 35–63) underwent two Positron Emission Tomography (PET) scans with [11C]-CUMI, a highly selective 5-HT1A agonist radioligand. Subjects received either a slow intravenous infusion of citalopram 10mg or saline starting 45 minutes before each PET scan in a randomized design. All subjects had a functional MRI emotion processing task (block design) known to activate the amygdala on a separate day.
The citalopram infusion induced 6–11% increases in [11C]-CUMI binding potential in anterior cingulate, insula and cortical brain regions (p < 0.05 corrected for repeated measures).
BOLD response to fearful vs neutral faces in the left amygdala inversely correlated with baseline dorsal raphe BP (Pearson r2 =−0.90, p < 0.001) and directly correlated with dorsal raphe BP changes (r2=0.51, p = 0.07).
The increase in [11C]CUMI-101 availability would be consistent with a decrease in endogenous 5-HT availability in certain terminal regions. The relationship between brain emotion processing and [11C]-CUMI binding in the raphe indicates the 5-HT levels at presynaptic receptors regulate emotional processing and suggests presynaptic 5-HT as a treatment target for affective disorders.
The Report to People on Employment (Government of India, 2010) recognizes the shift in India's age structure due to increasing longevity and declining fertility and the resultant doubling of the share of older persons in the population between 2001 and 2026. However, the report stops short of providing a clear strategy to enhance the income security of the elderly and create more favourable working conditions. In addition, the report does not highlight the problem of accessing social security, particularly in the informal sector. Considering the fact that providing employment and social security is crucial for the poor and other vulnerable sections of the population including the elderly workforce, there is a need for strong policy initiatives to overcome this lacuna. Much of the elderly workforce in informal sectors is left to fend for itself. Moreover, low wages and increasing wage differentials across different segments of the labour market have led to the concentration of benefits of recent economic growth in the hands of more secured job holders. One recent study (Bloom et al., 2010) finds low levels of earning during prime working age and consequently low levels of saving as one of the important reasons for participation of the elderly in the labour market in India. This is happening at a stage in the life of the elderly when the demand for health and medical care is likely to go up, and in turn increasing the old age dependency and therefore the economic burden of the ageing generation.
Antidepressant drugs such as selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors (SSRIs) remediate negative biases in emotional processing in depressed patients in both behavioural and neural outcome measures. However, it is not clear if these effects occur before, or as a consequence of, changes in clinical state.
In the present study, we investigated the effects of short-term SSRI treatment in depressed patients on the neural response to fearful faces prior to clinical improvement in mood. Altogether, 42 unmedicated depressed patients received SSRI treatment (10 mg escitalopram daily) or placebo in a randomised, parallel-group design. The neural response to fearful and happy faces was measured on day 7 of treatment using functional magnetic resonance imaging. A group of healthy controls was imaged in the same way.
Amygdala responses to fearful facial expressions were significantly greater in depressed patients compared to healthy controls. However, this response was normalised in patients receiving 7 days treatment with escitalopram. There was no significant difference in clinical depression ratings at 7 days between the escitalopram and placebo-treated patients.
Our results suggest that short-term SSRI treatment in depressed patients remediates amygdala hyperactivity in response to negative emotional stimuli prior to clinical improvement in depressed mood. This supports the hypothesis that the clinical effects of antidepressant treatment may be mediated in part through early changes in emotional processing. Further studies will be needed to show if these early effects of antidepressant medication predict eventual clinical outcome.
Rubella, a mild, vaccine-preventable disease, can manifest as congenital rubella syndrome (CRS), a devastating disease of the fetus. To emphasize the inadequacy of the existing rubella vaccination programme in India, we evaluated epidemiological evidence of rubella virus activity with data available from a tertiary-care centre. The proportion of suspected CRS cases that were laboratory confirmed increased from 4% in 2000 to 11% in 2008. During the same period, 329 clinically suspected postnatal rubella cases were tested of which 65 (20%) were laboratory confirmed. Of women (n=770) of childbearing age, 12·5% were susceptible to rubella.
Indian gooseberry, popularly known as amla, is harvested from two species of Phyllanthus, namely Phyllanthus emblica and Phyllanthus indofischeri. Although these two species are characterized on vegetative and reproductive features, development of reliable and authentic identification based on molecular approaches is necessary for precise identification. Most of the commercial orchards of Indian gooseberry are established with mixture of the two species. Introduction of unauthentic clones and seedlings in the establishment of orchards and differences in the growth of these two species under different elevations are the major constrains in identification. The present work aims to study the changes in vegetative and reproductive features under different elevations and to develop a simple molecular tool for precise identification of these two species based on single nucleotide polymorphisms in trnL (UAA) intron sequences of chloroplast DNA. Genomic DNA of leaf tissues of P. emblica and P. indofischeri, collected from the authentic source, was subjected to polymerase chain reaction amplification using trnL (UAA) intron gene-specific primers. The amplified product with the molecular weight of 540 bp was sequenced and used as reference for identification of these two species. The trnL (UAA) introns sequenced from 60 individual trees in three different orchards were compared with trnL (UAA) intron of authentic samples, and confirmed that these orchards have 76% population of P. indofischeri and remaining 24% is occupied by P. emblica. Thus, trnL (UAA) intron is a potential DNA marker for precise identification of these two species. The importance of the present study and its practical application in genetic improvement of Indian gooseberry are discussed.
Herein the synthesis and the crystal growth of benzoyl valine (BV), an organic nonlinear optical (NLO) material for frequency conversion was grown by slow evaporation solution growth technique at room temperature has been reported. The compound was prepared by Stockman method of benzoylation. The solubility curve shows linear nature up to a temperature of 313 K. XRD study reveals that the crystal belongs to monoclinic system with P21 non-centrosymmetric space group. The fundamental vibrational frequency of various functional groups (400-4000 cm-1) in the crystal was determined from FTIR analysis. 1H and 13C NMR spectral studies reveal the presence of proton and carbon network in the grown crystalline sample. The optical behaviour of the crystal was ascertained by optical UV absorption spectral studies. The UV cut off region (λmax) lies around 200 nm and the crystal is absolutely transparent from 220–800 nm suggesting its application as NLO material. The thermal stability of the crystal was determined by thermogravimetric and differential thermal analyses. Laser damage threshold of BV was found to be 0.34 GW/cm2 and hence BV can be used in frequency doubler system. Photoconductivity study of BV revealed negative photoconductiviting nature of the sample. The microhardness studies confirm that BV has a moderate Vickers hardness number (VHN) value in comparison to the other organic NLO crystals.
Previous imaging studies have revealed that acute major depression is characterized by altered neural responses to negative emotional stimuli. Typically, responses in limbic regions such as the amygdala are increased while activity in cortical regulatory regions such as the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) is diminished. Whether these changes persist in unmedicated recovered patients is unclear.
We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to examine neural responses to emotional faces in a facial expression-matching task in 16 unmedicated recovered depressed patients and 21 healthy controls.
Compared with controls, recovered depressed patients had increased responses bilaterally to fearful faces in the DLPFC and right caudate. Responses in the amygdala did not distinguish the groups.
Our findings indicate that clinical recovery from depression is associated with increased activity in the DLPFC to negative emotional stimuli. We suggest that this increase may reflect a compensatory cortical control mechanism with the effect of limiting emotional dysregulation in limbic regions such as the amygdala.
A higher risk of suicide has been associated with low birth weight in one
study, but not yet replicated. Higher birth order has been associated
with self-harm, but not with suicide.
To examine the relationship between perinatal circumstances and
subsequent young adult suicide in Scotland.
Using linked data from the Scottish Morbidity Record and Scottish death
records, a birth cohort of 1 061 830 people was followed-up for a mean of
25.1 years. Data were analysed using Cox regression.
Higher maternal parity, younger maternal age (<25 years),
non-professional parental occupations and low birth weight (<2500 g)
were independently associated with higher suicide risk of offspring as
young adults. There was no independent association with gestational
Our findings provide support for the influence of maternal circumstance
and foetal experience on subsequent mental health.
Black Diamond (BD) is gaining popularity as a low k dielectric for copper/low k integration. However, because of lower hardness and more hydrophobic in nature of BD film surface comparing with those of the conventional oxide, some specific defects appear during CMP process of Cu/BD patterned wafers. In this study, the patterned wafer inspection systems, AIT II, and SEM review station are used to review and to classify such defects generated from CMP process. Using conventional Cu/Oxide CMP process, the percentage of these specific defects from Cu/BD CMP is typically more than 60 of total defect count. By modifying the composition of slurry with new additives and optimization of polishing and cleaning parameters, the total defect count can be reduced by 80%, in which the amount of specific defects is less than 5% of total defect count.
The evolution from Cu to Ta surface during Cu CMP has been investigated. As a first step of Cu CMP, removing excess Cu on field area to Ta often gives rise to topography issues such as dishing or erosion. The exposure of Ta is detected by in-situ reflectance measurement, where the downward slope-start signifies the beginning of Ta exposure. For blanket wafers, the maximum remaining Cu thickness at slope-start increases with initial Cu thickness. Applying lower polishing pressure and table speed, so-called soft landing, near the Cu-Ta transition stage results in thicker remaining Cu. In patterned wafers, Ta exposure starts near high pattern density areas such as wide lines, and contrary to blanket wafers, remaining Cu thickness at slope-start cannot be correlated simply with initial Cu thickness. In this experiment, with increasing initial Cu thickness, remaining Cu thickness at slope-start decreased. The amount of dishing is largely proportional to the initial Cu thickness.
Lanthanum and neodymium titanates were prepared by a sol-gel route. Synthesis of La2Ti2O7 from pure alkoxide precursors yielded an intermediate perovskite type phase, La(1–x)TiO3, which partially transformed to La2Ti2O7 on heating to 1500 °C. Substitution of the lanthanum acetylacetonate for alkoxide precursor yielded La2Ti2O7 without any intermediate phase at a very low temperature of 700 °C. Sintering of the La2Ti2O7 gel powder yielded a highly dense ceramic with ∼97% theoretical density. Similar sintering treatment resulted in ∼92% theoretical density for Nd2Ti2O7.
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