To save content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about saving content to .
To save content items to your Kindle, first ensure firstname.lastname@example.org
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about saving to your Kindle.
Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
It has been suggested that psychosocial factors are related to survival time of inpatients with cancer. However, there are not many studies examining the relationship between spiritual well-being (SWB) and survival time among countries. This study investigated the relationship between SWB and survival time among three East Asian countries.
This international multicenter cohort study is a secondary analysis involving newly admitted inpatients with advanced cancer in palliative care units in Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan. SWB was measured using the Integrated Palliative Outcome Scale (IPOS) at admission. We performed multivariate analysis using the Cox proportional hazards model to identify independent prognostic factors.
A total of 2,638 patients treated at 37 palliative care units from January 2017 to September 2018 were analyzed. The median survival time was 18.0 days (95% confidence interval [CI] 16.5–19.5) in Japan, 23.0 days (95% CI 19.9–26.1) in Korea, and 15.0 days (95% CI 13.0–17.0) in Taiwan. SWB was a significant factor correlated with survival in Taiwan (hazard ratio [HR] 1.27; 95% CI 1.01–1.59; p = 0.04), while it was insignificant in Japan (HR 1.10; 95% CI 1.00–1.22; p = 0.06), and Korea (HR 1.02; 95% CI 0.77–1.35; p = 0.89).
Significance of results
SWB on admission was associated with survival in patients with advanced cancer in Taiwan but not Japan or Korea. The findings suggest the possibility of a positive relationship between spiritual care and survival time in patients with far advanced cancer.
Accurate prognostication is important for patients and their families to prepare for the end of life. Objective Prognostic Score (OPS) is an easy-to-use tool that does not require the clinicians’ prediction of survival (CPS), whereas Palliative Prognostic Score (PaP) needs CPS. Thus, inexperienced clinicians may hesitate to use PaP. We aimed to evaluate the accuracy of OPS compared with PaP in inpatients in palliative care units (PCUs) in three East Asian countries.
This study was a secondary analysis of a cross-cultural, multicenter cohort study. We enrolled inpatients with far-advanced cancer in PCUs in Japan, Korea, and Taiwan from 2017 to 2018. We calculated the area under the receiver operating characteristics (AUROC) curve to compare the accuracy of OPS and PaP.
A total of 1,628 inpatients in 33 PCUs in Japan and Korea were analyzed. OPS and PaP were calculated in 71.7% of the Japanese patients and 80.0% of the Korean patients. In Taiwan, PaP was calculated for 81.6% of the patients. The AUROC for 3-week survival was 0.74 for OPS in Japan, 0.68 for OPS in Korea, 0.80 for PaP in Japan, and 0.73 for PaP in Korea. The AUROC for 30-day survival was 0.70 for OPS in Japan, 0.71 for OPS in Korea, 0.79 for PaP in Japan, and 0.74 for PaP in Korea.
Significance of results
Both OPS and PaP showed good performance in Japan and Korea. Compared with PaP, OPS could be more useful for inexperienced physicians who hesitate to estimate CPS.
Left ventricular assist devices enable recovery from severe heart failure and serve as a bridge to heart transplantation. However, chronic mechanical unloading can impair myocardial recovery. We aimed to assess myocyte size, fibrosis, apoptosis, and β-adrenoreceptor levels after rats with left ventricle unloading induced by heterotopic heart transplantation were administered carvedilol and metoprolol.
Thirty rats with heart transplants were divided randomly into control, carvedilol treatment, and metoprolol treatment groups. Follow-up was conducted after 2 and 4 weeks of unloading.
Carvedilol and metoprolol treatments did not prevent the decrease in myocyte diameter in unloaded left ventricles. Metoprolol significantly decreased the ratio of the fibrotic area in the unloaded heart, measured using Masson’s trichrome staining after 2 weeks. However, carvedilol and metoprolol did not reduce apoptosis, based on measurements of terminal deoxynucleotidyl-transferase-mediated dUTP nick end-labelling positive cells and the expression of caspase-3 in unloaded hearts after 2 and 4 weeks. Metoprolol treatment did not significantly decrease the mRNA expression of myocardial SERCA2a in the unloaded heart after 2 weeks.
Compared to carvedilol treatment, metoprolol treatment improved myocardial fibrosis and SERCA2a expression to a greater extent; however, neither drug prevented myocardial apoptosis.
The Sewol ferry disaster is one of the most tragic events in Korea’s modern history. Among the 476 people on board, which included Danwon High School students (324) and teachers (14), 304 passengers died in the disaster (295 recovered corpses and 9 missing) and 172 survived. Of the rescued survivors, 72 were attending Danwon High School, located in Ansan City, and residing in a residence nearby. Because the students were young, emotionally susceptible adolescents, both the government and the parents requested the students be grouped together at a single hospital capable of appropriate psychiatric care. Korea University Ansan Hospital was the logical choice, as the only third-tier university-grade hospital with the necessary faculty and facilities within the residential area of the families of the students. We report the experiences and the lessons learned from the processes of preparing for and managing the surviving young students as a community-based hospital. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2017;11:389–393)
It is controversial whether Borna disease virus (BDV) infects humans and causes psychiatric disorders.
The relationship between BDV infection and schizophrenia with deficit syndrome was investigated.
Using the Schedule for the Deficit Syndrome, 62 schizophrenic in-patients were selected from three psychiatric hospitals. RNA was extracted from peripheral blood mononuclear cells and analyzed using nested reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction with primers to detect BDV p24 and p40.
Results and conclusions:
BDV transcripts were not detected in samples from any of the 62 schizophrenic patients. These data do not support an etiologic association between BDV infection and the deficit form of schizophrenia.
Nanoparticles of Cd1–xCuxS (x = 0–0.15) were synthesized by chemical coprecipitation using thiophenol as a capping agent. The x-ray diffraction patterns reveal that the pure and doped CdS nanoparticles are single phase with cubic zinc blende structure. The transmission electron microscopy shows the average size of the nanoparticles is about 8.5 nm. Optical absorption spectra indicate the energy gap decreases with increasing Cu2+ concentration. The broad emission peak around 520 nm is completely quenched with increasing Cu2+ content. The electron spin resonance analysis also confirms the Cu (II) ion to be doped substitutionally in CdS nanoparticles and the Lande factor of all the samples with sharp resonance is g = 2.0.
To describe the incidence of recovery of both vancomycin-resistant enterococci (VRE) and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) from culture of a single clinical specimen, to describe the clinical characteristics of patients from whom these specimens were recovered, and to identify the risk factors of these patients.
A retrospective cohort and case-control study.
A tertiary care university hospital and referral center in Seoul, Korea.
We identified 61 case patients for whom a single clinical specimen yielded both VRE and MRSA on culture, and 122 control patients for whom any clinical specimen yielded only VRE on culture. The control patients were selected by matching 2 :1 with the case patients for age, sex, and first date of sampling that led to isolation of VRE or both VRE and MRSA among 1,536 VRE-colonized patients from January 1, 2003, through December 31, 2006. To identify patient risk factors for the recovery of both VRE and MRSA in a single clinical specimen, we performed univariate comparisons between the 2 groups and then multivariate logistic regression analysis.
The incidence of recovery of both VRE and MRSA from culture of a single clinical specimen was 3.97% (for 61 of 1,536 VRE-colonized patients) over 4 years. Among these 82 single clinical specimens, the most common type was wound specimens (26.8%), followed by lower respiratory tract specimens (18.3%), urine specimens (17.1%), and catheter tips (15.9%). Of the 61 case patients, 14 (23.0%) had 2 or more single clinical specimens that yielded both VRE and MRSA on culture, and the longest interval from the first sampling that yielded both organisms to the last sampling that yielded both was 174 days. Independent patient risk factors for the presence of both VRE and MRSA in a single clinical specimen were chronic renal disease (odds ratio [OR], 7.00; P = .012), urinary catheterization (OR, 3.36; P = .026), and longer total cumulative duration of hospital stay within the previous year (OR, 1.03; P < .001).
We confirmed that the recovery of VRE and MRSA from a single clinical specimen occurs continually. Because prolonged cell-to-cell contact can facilitate transfer of vanA, close observation and surveillance for vancomycin-resistant S. aureus, especially among patients with risk factors for the recovery of both VRE and MRSA from a single clinical specimen, should be continued.
The role of folate, vitamin B12 and homocysteine levels in
depression is not clear.
To investigate cross-sectional and prospective associations between
folate, B12 and homocysteine levels and late-life
A total of 732 Korean people aged 65 years or over were evaluated at
baseline. Of the 631 persons who were not depressed, 521 (83%) were
followed over a period of 2–3 years and incident depression was
ascertained with the Geriatric Mental State schedule. Serum folate, serum
vitamin B12 and plasma homocysteine levels were assayed at
both baseline and follow-up.
Lower levels of folate and vitamin B12 and higher homocysteine
levels at baseline were associated with a higher risk of incident
depression at follow-up. Incident depression was associated with a
decline in vitamin B12 and an increase in homocysteine levels
over the follow-up period.
Lower folate, lower vitamin B12 and raised homocysteine levels
may be risk factors for late-life depression.
Causal relationships between vascular factors and late-life depression are controversial.
To investigate prospective associations between risk factors for vascular disease and incidence of late-life depression.
Of 661 community participants aged 65 years or over, without depression at baseline, 521 (79%) were re-evaluated 2 years later. At baseline and follow-up, a diagnostic interview for depression was carried out and information on vascular status, disability and cognitive function was gathered.
Pre-existing heart disease, incident stroke and lower baseline high-density lipoprotein cholesterol level were significantly associated with incidence of late-life depression, independently of disability and cognitive function.
These results provide some support for a vascular aetiology of late-life depression. However, important risk factors for cerebrovascular disease such as hypertension and diabetes were not implicated, and the associations with lipid levels might still be explained by affective states earlier in life.
Size-tuned ZnO nanorod arrays (NRAs), aligned well vertically and laterally, were synthesized by catalyst-free, metalorganic chemical vapor deposition on GaN-buffered Al2O3 (0001) substrates by adjusting the O/Zn precursor ratio in the reactor. Their electrical transport properties were investigated using field effect transistors based on individual ZnO nanorods. We find that the carrier concentrations and mobilities in the nanorods are not very sensitive to the change of the precursor ratio. This suggests that altering the precursor ratio is a way of fabricating size-tuned ZnO NRAs with quite consistent electrical properties.
Metal oxide nanoparticles within the protein ferritin can act as an energy storage source in nano-bio batteries containing ferrous ferritin and a reconstituted ferritin cage containing different inorganic elements, such as Co, Mn, Ni, and Pt. These components were introduced as two ferritin half-cells with different redox potentials existing between the ferrous ferritin and the reconstituted ferritin. The reduction of ferritin was analyzed in a solution containing 3-[N-morpholino] propanesulfonic acid buffer and oxidized methyl viologen using cyclic voltammetry. The reduction and oxidation peaks of the methyl viologen occurred at potentials of −300 and −100 mV, respectively, and the reduction and the oxidation peaks of the released Fe occurred at potentials of −300 and −100 mV, respectively. The reduction of ferritin was influenced by the pH of the ferritin solution.
The swelling behavior of chitosan hydrogels in ionic liquid–water binary systems was studied using hydrophilic room-temperature ionic liquids (RTILs) to elucidate the swelling properties of chitosan hydrogels. It was confirmed that chitosan hydrogels are much stiffer after immersing in a pure RTIL because the water existing inside the chitosan polymer network is extracted into the RTIL. The pH of the binary system changes when the RTIL is in contact with water. The chitosan hydrogels were fully dissociated at a 90% water content in the BMI-BF4-water binary system. The equilibrium binary system content behavior of the chitosan hydrogels depended upon the amount of free water present. The water behavior in a pure RTIL was examined using differential scanning calorimetry.
Composite fibers composed of chitosan and single-wall carbon nanotubes (CNTs) have been fabricated using a wet spinning method. The dispersion was improved by the sonic agitation of the CNTs in a chitosan solution followed by centrifugation to remove tube aggregates and any residual catalyst. The mechanical behavior was investigated using a dynamic mechanical analyzer (DMA). The mechanical tests showed a dramatic increase in Young's modulus for the chitosan/CNT composite fibers fabricated using the improved dispersion method. The strain on the microfibers was determined from tensile load measurements during pH switching in acidic or basic electrolyte solutions. The microfibers showed a general actuation behavior of expanding at pH = 2 and contracting at pH = 7 under low tensile loads. However, a reverse of this actuation behavior was exhibited under high tensile loads. This anomalous pH actuation is both new and surprising. It was explained from an analysis of the differences in sample stiffness and Poisson’s ratio under tensile load in electrolyte solutions with different pH values.
Composite nanofibers including ferritin nanoparticles or multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) were fabricated to enhance the physical properties of the nanofibers, such as the elastic modulus and electrical conductivity. The ferritin was homogeneously incorporated in the polymeric nanofibers, but excess carbon nanotubes (CNTs) added to the polymer solution resulted in the fabrication of composite nanofibers with rough surfaces. PVA/ferritin/CNT composite nanofibers were fabricated that had smooth surfaces, and had a good dispersion of ferritin and CNTs. These composite nanofibers are applicable to artificial muscles requiring enhanced physical properties.
Nb-doped Bi4Ti3O12 (Nb-BIT) ferroelectric thin films were prepared in the presence of a nonionic surfactant (pluronic P123) added as an additive to the sol solution and by rapid thermal annealing (RTA). The film annealed at the relatively low temperature of 600 °C was well crystallized and showed good ferroelectricity. The switching charge of capacitors with polarization reversal rapidly increased with a large amplitude and low frequency of the applied pulse, and gradually decreased with a small amplitude and high frequency. The remanent polarization (2Pr) after subjecting the Nb-BIT capacitors to 108 read/write cycles was 46 μC/cm2, which is remarkably higher than 20 μC/cm2 observed in the initial state. These phenomena seem to appear by the presence of space charges trapped after heat treatment by the RTA process.
Microwave properties of coplanar waveguide (CPW) transmission lines fabricated on high dielectric materials, such as ferroelectric Ba1−xSrxTiO3 films, are highly sensitive on the dimension and shape of electrodes. A small change in device dimension affects the total electrical length of the CPW, which may mislead the effective dielectric constant of the dielectric layer. Furthermore, extracting dielectric constant of high-k thin films from the measured microwave properties, such as S-parameters, is very difficult. The well known a modified conformal mapping method frequently exhibits an inconsistent dielectric constant for CPW on high-k materials. CPW transmission lines were fabricated on high-k thin films, ferroelectric Ba0.6Sr0.4TiO3, which were deposited by the pulsed laser deposition with partial oxygen backgrounds. A large phase shift angle of 100° at 10 GHz was observed from the CPW (gap = 4 μm, length = 3 mm) with a 40 V of dc bias, which supports that the idea of the tunable microwave device application using ferroelectrics films. The dielectric constant of the thin ferroelectric film was extracted from the dimension of the CPW (gap, width, length) and the measured S-parameters by a modified conformal mapping. However, the dielectric constant of the ferroelectric thin film calculated by a modified conformal mapping exhibits a gap dependency; dielectric constant (990 ∼ 830) decreases with increasing gap size (4 ∼ 19 μm, respectively). For comparison, dielectric properties have been extracted by extensive EM-simulation using a HFSS™ (Ansoft) with observed dimensions of CPW devices. Total phase, which is closely related with the dielectric constant of the film, is strongly affected by gap size, film thickness, and slanted angle of CPW.
We have studied infrared photoluminescence (PL) and x-ray diffraction (XRD) of 400 nm and 1500 nm thick InAs epilayers on GaAs, and 4 nm thick InAs on graded InGaAs layer with total thickness of 300 nm grown by molecular beam epitaxy. The PL peak positions of 400 nm, 1500 nm and 4 nm InAs epilayer measured at 10 K are blue-shifted from that of InAs bulk by 6.5, 4.5, and 6 meV, respectively, which can be largely explained by the residual strain in the epilayer. The residual strain caused by the lattice mismatch between InAs and GaAs or graded InGaAs/GaAs was observed from XRD measurements. While the PL peak position of 400 nm thick InAs layer is linearly shifted toward higher energy with increase in excitation intensity ranging from 10 to 140 mW, those of 4 nm InAs epilayer on InGaAs and 1500 nm InAs layer on GaAs is gradually blue-shifted and then, saturated above a power of 75 mW. These results suggest that adopting a graded InGaAs layer between InAs and GaAs can efficiently reduce the strain due to lattice mismatch in the structure of InAs/GaAs.
Ferroelectric BaTiO 3 thin films with perovskite structure were grown by sol-gel spin-on processing onto (111)Pt/Ti/SiO2/Si substrates. In order to investigate the effects of space charge in BaTiO3 thin films, we measured the relative dielectric constant and the ac conductivity of the films as a function of frequency, ac oscillation amplitude and temperature. Dielectric constant and dielectric loss were 147 and 0.03 at 100 kHz, respectively. Also, BaTiO3 thin films exhibited marked dielectric relaxation above the Curie temperature and in the low frequency region below 100 Hz. This low frequency dielectric relaxation is attributed to the ionized space charge carriers such as oxygen vacancies and defects in BaTiO3 film and the interfaical polarization. The thermal activation energy for the relaxation process of the ionized space charge carriers was 0.72 eV.
The effects of hydrogen plasma exposure upon electron Hall mobilities in InSb heteroepitaxial film grown on GaAs substrate have been investigated. After exposure to a hydrogen plasma at 250°C, the electron Hall mobility is significantly increased at low temperatures and the temperature dependence of the mobility is reduced. For the film with a broad x-ray rocking-curve width, 4 h-hydrogen plasma exposure can give rise to the enhancement of the mobility up to 6 times at low temperature. The mobility for the film with a narrow line width is enhanced around 1.5 times. These enhanced mobilities are nearly restored by 350°C rapid thermal annealing. The enhancement of the mobility due to hydrogenation is attributed to the satisfaction of the dangling bonds generated by the misfit dislocations.
Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this to your organisation's collection.