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Background: Mumps, a contagious disease, is transmissible by respiratory droplet particles and is preventable by vaccination. In South Korea, mandatory vaccination against mumps has markedly reduced its incidence. However, both the incidence and the number of reported cases of mumps have persistently increased in South Korea since 2007. Despite high vaccination rates, mumps outbreaks continue to occur, and many studies have been conducted on mumps seroprevalence in children and adolescents. In comparison, few reports have been published regarding mumps seroprevalence in healthcare workers (HCWs) in South Korea. Objective: We investigated the seroprevalence of HCWs in South Korea. Methods: This study was conducted at Asan Medical Center, a 2,705-bed tertiary-care hospital in Seoul, South Korea, with 8,329 HCWs. In 2018, we performed mumps antibody testing for HCWs. We administered MMR vaccination to all HCWs whose antibody test yielded equivocal or negative results. However, we did not repeat mumps antibody testing after MMR vaccination. Results: In total, 6,055 HCWs (73%) underwent mumps antibody testing. The overall mumps seropositivity rate was 87% (95% CI, 86%–87%). Seropositivity rates of all birth cohorts ranged from 72% to 92%. Mumps seropositivity rates were 88% in HCWs born before 1970, 87% in those born between 1970 and 1989, and 88% in those born between 1990 and 1995 (P = .59). Mumps seropositivity rates for both women and men HCWs were 87% (3,770 of 4,311 women and 1,517 of 1,744 men); the difference was not statistically significant (P = .62). The overall mumps seropositivity rate was 87%, which was above the herd immunity threshold of 75%–86%. Conclusions: Our results revealed that the overall mumps seropositivity rate in South Korean HCWs was above the herd immunity threshold. On the basis of this finding, we recommend that MMR vaccination after serologic testing may be a more reasonable approach than universal MMR vaccination alone in Korea.
Background: Measles is a highly contagious disease that is transmissible by airborne particles but is preventable by vaccination. South Korea has maintained a highly immunized adult population; however, small local outbreaks of measles continued to occur, and there have been some reports of pockets of underimmunity among the young adult population. It is important to know the seroepidemiology of healthcare workers (HCWs) for policy-making process, but data on the seroprevalence of measles in HCWs in South Korea are limited. Methods: We investigated the seroprevalence of HCWs at Asan Medical Center, a 2,705-bed tertiary-care hospital in Seoul, South Korea, with 8,329 HCWs. In 2014, after an outbreak of measles occurred in a university in Seoul, Asan Medical Center required measles IgG tests for all HCWs born in and after 1967 for point-prevalence surveillance. In addition, we have routinely performed measles antibody test for new HCWs since 2014. In 2018, antibody tests were administered to HCWs who were born before 1967 or who had taken a leave of absence in 2014. We provided MMR vaccination to all HCWs whose antibody tests yielded negative results. Results: In total, 7,411 HCWs (89%) underwent measles antibody tests from 2014 to 2018. The overall seropositivity was 73% (95% CI, 72%–74%); seroprevalence was 73% in HCWs born in of after 1967, whereas the seroprevalence in HCWs born before 1967 was 98%. The seroprevalence sharply decreased from 85% in the 1986 birth cohort to 42% in the 1995 birth cohort. Conclusions: In conclusion, the proportion of measles-susceptible individuals was substantially high in HCWs, especially in young adults. Because the impact of measles outbreak in healthcare facilities would be critical, a policy regarding routine serologic screening followed by measles vaccination or routine measles vaccination in healthcare facilities should be considered, especially for young Korean HCWs.
Background: We describe and evaluate our outbreak of carbapenem-resistant K. pneumoniae transmitted by contaminated duodenoscopes during endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) procedures. Methods: An outbreak investigation was performed when Klebsiella pneumoniae carbapenemase-producing K. pneumoniae (KPC-KP) were identified from bile specimens of 4 patients. The investigation included medical record review, practice audits, and surveillance cultures of duodenoscopes and environmental sites. If available, clinical specimens were obtained from patients who had undergone ERCP in the previous 3 months. Carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) screening cultures were performed to identify additional patients until no CRE cases were detected during 2 consecutive weeks. Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) of KPC-KP isolates was implemented. Results: In total, 12 cases were identified with exposure to duodenoscope from February 2019 through April 2019, including 6 cases with infections and 6 asymptomatic carriers. Case-control analysis showed that 2 specific duodenoscopes would be associated with the KPC-KP outbreak. Duodenoscope reprocessing procedures did not deviate from manufacturer recommendations for reprocessing. After ethylene oxide (EO) gas sterilization, the outbreak was terminated. Conclusions: Meticulous cleaning protocol and enhanced surveillance are necessary to prevent outbreaks of CRE. Notably, enhanced cleaning measures, such as sterilization for duodenoscopes, would be required after procedures with KPC-KP carriers.
This article reviews the advancements and prospects of liquid cell transmission electron microscopy (TEM) imaging and analysis methods in understanding the nucleation, growth, etching, and assembly dynamics of nanocrystals. The bonding of atoms into nanoscale crystallites produces materials with nonadditive properties unique to their size and geometry. The recent application of in situ liquid cell TEM to nanocrystal development has initiated a paradigm shift, (1) from trial-and-error synthesis to a mechanistic understanding of the “synthetic reactions” responsible for the emergence of crystallites from a disordered soup of reactive species (e.g., ions, atoms, molecules) and shape-defined growth or etching; and (2) from post-processing characterization of the nanocrystals’ superlattice assemblies to in situ imaging and mapping of the fundamental interactions and energy landscape governing their collective phase behaviors. Imaging nanocrystal formation and assembly processes on the single-particle level in solution immediately impacts many existing fields, including materials science, nanochemistry, colloidal science, biology, environmental science, electrochemistry, mineralization, soft condensed-matter physics, and device fabrication.
We aimed to identify the association of hydration status with insulin resistance (IR) and body fat distribution. A total of 14 344 adults participated in the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2008–2010. We used urine specific gravity (USG) to indicate hydration status, and HOMA-IR (homoeostasis model assessment of IR) and trunk:leg fat ratio (TLR) as primary outcomes. In multivariate logistic regression, the OR per 0·01 increase in USG for high IR was 1·303 (95 % CI 1·185, 1·433; P < 0·001). In multivariate generalised additive model plots, increased USG showed a J-shaped association with logarithmic HOMA-IR, with the lowest Akaike’s information criterion score of USG 1·030. Moreover, increased USG was independently associated with increased trunk fat, decreased leg fat and increased TLR. In mediation analysis, the proportion of mediation effects of USG on TLR via IR was 0·193 (95 % CI 0·132, 0·285; P < 0·001), while the proportion of mediation effects of USG on IR via TLR was 0·130 (95 % CI 0·086, 0·188; P < 0·001). Increased USG, a sign of low hydration status and presumably high vasopressin, was associated with IR and poor fat distribution. Direct effect of low hydration status may be more dominant than indirect effect via IR or fat distribution. Further studies are necessary to confirm our findings.
The experiments reported in this research paper aimed to determine the effect of supplementing different forms of L-methionine (L-Met) and acetate on protein synthesis in immortalized bovine mammary epithelial cell line (MAC-T cells). Treatments were Control, L-Met, conjugated L-Met and acetate (CMA), and non-conjugated L-Met and Acetate (NMA). Protein synthesis mechanism was determined by omics method. NMA group had the highest protein content in the media and CSN2 mRNA expression levels (P < 0.05). The number of upregulated and downregulated proteins observed were 39 and 77 in L-Met group, 62 and 80 in CMA group and 50 and 81 in NMA group from 448 proteins, respectively (P < 0.05). L-Met, NMA and CMA treatments stimulated pathways related to protein and energy metabolism (P < 0.05). Metabolomic analysis also revealed that L-Met, CMA and NMA treatments resulted in increases of several metabolites (P < 0.05). In conclusion, NMA treatment increased protein concentration and expression level of CSN2 mRNA in MAC-T cells compared to control as well as L-Met and CMA treatments through increased expression of milk protein synthesis-related genes and production of the proteins and metabolites involved in energy and protein synthesis pathways.
To investigate the impacts of depression screening, diagnosis and treatment on major adverse cardiac events (MACEs) in acute coronary syndrome (ACS).
Prospective cohort study including a nested 24-week randomised clinical trial for treating depression was performed with 5–12 years after the index ACS. A total of 1152 patients recently hospitalised with ACS were recruited from 2006 to 2012, and were divided by depression screening and diagnosis at baseline and 24-week treatment allocation into five groups: 651 screening negative (N), 55 screening positive but no depressive disorder (S), 149 depressive disorder randomised to escitalopram (E), 151 depressive disorder randomised to placebo (P) and 146 depressive disorder receiving medical treatment only (M).
Cumulative MACE incidences over a median 8.4-year follow-up period were 29.6% in N, 43.6% in S, 40.9% in E, 53.6% in P and 59.6% in M. Compared to N, screening positive was associated with higher incidence of MACE [adjusted hazards ratio 2.15 (95% confidence interval 1.63–2.83)]. No differences were found between screening positive with and without a formal depressive disorder diagnosis. Of those screening positive, E was associated with a lower incidence of MACE than P and M. M had the worst outcomes even compared to P, despite significantly milder depressive symptoms at baseline.
Routine depression screening in patients with recent ACS and subsequent appropriate treatment of depression could improve long-term cardiac outcomes.
This study aimed to investigate associations among spirituality, coping strategies, quality of life (QOL), and the effects of depression and anxiety thereon in cancer patients.
In total, 237 cancer patients referred to a psycho-oncology clinic at a university hospital in Korea were enrolled. After identifying predictors of patient QOL in a stepwise regression model, we developed a hypothetical path model wherein interpersonal coping was considered as a mediating variable between spirituality (meaning/peace) and QOL and wherein depression and anxiety affected each of these three variables.
The direct effect of spirituality (meaning/peace) on QOL was 36.7%. In an indirect model, interpersonal coping significantly mediated the relationship between spirituality (meaning/peace) and QOL. Depression exerted the largest negative effect on spirituality (meaning/peace), interpersonal coping, and QOL. Anxiety had negative effects on spirituality (meaning/peace) and QOL, but a positive effect on interpersonal coping.
Significance of results
Interpersonal coping strategies work as a partial mediator of the relationship between meaning/peace subscales of spirituality and QOL. Effective management of depression may help in achieving better outcomes associated therewith. Greater attention and efforts to improve social connectedness and meaning of life in spiritual well-being may improve the QOL of cancer patients.
Depressive symptoms are common in bereaved caregivers; however, there have been few prospective studies using a structured interview. This study investigated the prevalence and preloss predictors of major depressive disorder (MDD) in bereaved caregivers of patients in a palliative care unit.
This prospective cohort study collected caregiver sociodemographic and psychological data before the death of a palliative care unit patient, including MDD, care-burden, coping style, and hopeful attitude. Postloss MDD was assessed 6 and 13 months after death, and a multivariate logistic regression analysis was conducted to identify its predictors.
Of 305 caregivers contacted, 92 participated in this study. The prevalence of preloss MDD was 21.8%; the prevalences of postloss MDD were 34.8% and 24.7% at 6 and 13 months, respectively. Preloss MDD predicted postloss MDD at 6 months (odds ratio [OR] = 5.38, 95% confidence interval [CI95%] = 1.29, 22.43); preloss nonhopeful attitude and unemployment status of caregivers predicted postloss MDD at 13 months (OR = 8.77, CI95% = 1.87, 41.13 and OR = 7.10, CI95% = 1.28, 39.36, respectively).
Significance of results
Approximately 35% of caregivers suffered from MDD at 6 months postloss, but the prevalence of MDD decreased to about 25% at 13 months. Preloss MDD significantly predicted postloss MDD at 6 months, whereas hopeful attitude and unemployment at baseline were significantly associated with postloss MDD at 13 months.
We trace Sn nanoparticles (NPs) produced from SnO2 nanotubes (NTs) during lithiation initialized by high energy e-beam irradiation. The growth dynamics of Sn NPs is visualized in liquid electrolytes by graphene liquid cell transmission electron microscopy. The observation reveals that Sn NPs grow on the surface of SnO2 NTs via coalescence and the final shape of agglomerated NPs is governed by surface energy of the Sn NPs and the interfacial energy between Sn NPs and SnO2 NTs. Our result will likely benefit more rational material design of the ideal interface for facile ion insertion.
A single-item depression measure may not be adequate in capturing the complex entity of mental health, despite wide use of this indicator in community studies. This study evaluated the accuracy of a single-question depression measure in comparison to two composite indices–the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CESD) and the Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS).
Materials and methods:
A total of 800 elderly participants ranging from 60 to 89 years of age and residing in Seoul were recruited using a multistage sampling scheme in 2015. The survey was conducted by trained interviewers with a constructed questionnaire. Reliability and validity measures such as the Kappa index, sensitivity, specificity, PPV, NPV, and AUC were used to evaluate the accuracy of the single question measure. Socio-demographic group differences in accuracy were compared by age, sex, marital status, education, employment, and financial status.
The prevalence of depression by a single-question measure was much lower than those of CESD and GDS (5.5%, 12.3%, and 12.1%, respectively). The sensitivity of the single-item measure, based on CESD and GDS, was extremely low at 30.6% and 36.1%. In the subgroup analysis, however, there was a marked educational discrepancy in all accuracy measures; in sensitivity, people with a university degree or higher showed about 2.4 times higher sensitivity than those having only a primary school education.
The results show that a single-question depression measure should be used with caution. In addition, the single-question measure could substantially underestimate depression among the risk group of older adults.
This study examined the effects of a variety of metallurgical factors on the electrochemical corrosion behavior of superaustenitic stainless steel welds. First, the effects of the sigma (σ)-phase on the corrosion behavior were studied by means of a three-dimensional-atom probe. Cr and Mo depletion areas formed around the σ-phases which are precipitated in the interdendritic area were clearly observed. Second, the effects of oxide inclusion on the pitting corrosion of the steel welds were analyzed. The utilization of high resolution transmission electron microscope clearly demonstrated that the thickness and Cr content of the passive film formed on the steel surface decreased significantly with decreasing distance to the oxide inclusion, resulting in a deterioration of the corrosion resistance. Third, the effects of alloying elements, Cu and Al, were evaluated using an electrochemical polarization technique. This confirmed that Cu has a detrimental effect on the resistance to localized corrosion of the steel. The addition of Al up to 0.25 wt% had no significant effects on corrosion resistance in a chloride environment despite the presence of an Al-based oxide layer (Al2O3) on the outermost surface.
The National Institute of Neurological Disease and Stroke-Canadian Stroke Network (NINDS-CSN) 5-minute neuropsychology protocol consists of only verbal tasks, and is proposed as a brief screening method for vascular cognitive impairment. We evaluated its feasibility within two weeks after stroke and ability to predict the development of post-stroke dementia (PSD) at 3 months after stroke.
We prospectively enrolled subjects with ischemic stroke within seven days of symptom onset who were consecutively admitted to 12 university hospitals. Neuropsychological assessments using the NINDS-CSN 5-minute and 60-minute neuropsychology protocols were administered within two weeks and at 3 months after stroke onset, respectively. PSD was diagnosed with reference to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association statement, requiring deficits in at least two cognitive domains.
Of 620 patients, 512 (82.6%) were feasible for the NINDS-CSN 5-minute protocol within two weeks after stroke. The incidence of PSD was 16.2% in 308 subjects who had completed follow-up at 3 months after stroke onset. The total score of the NINDS-CSN 5-minute protocol differed significantly between those with and without PSD (4.0 ± 2.7, 7.4 ± 2.7, respectively; p < 0.01). A cut-off value of 6/7 showed reasonable discriminative power (sensitivity 0.82, specificity 0.67, AUC 0.74). The NINDS-CSN 5-minute protocol score was a significant predictor for PSD (adjusted odds ratio 6.32, 95% CI 2.65–15.05).
The NINDS-CSN 5-minute protocol is feasible to evaluate cognitive functions in patients with acute ischemic stroke. It might be a useful screening method for early identification of high-risk groups for PSD.
To clarify the effect of bainite in microstructure on hydrogen diffusion and trapping behavior and susceptibility to hydrogen assisted cracking of API grade linepipe steel, three specimens with different fraction of bainite in the microstructure are used. Firstly, hydrogen diffusion and trapping behaviors of the steels are studied by utilizing the electrochemical permeation technique. For fundamental analysis on the experimental data, a variety of diffusion parameters were determined by curve-fitting with a theoretical diffusion equation based on numerical finite difference method (FDM). It indicates that the steel with higher fraction of bainite exhibits much higher sub-surface hydrogen concentration and much lower apparent hydrogen diffusivity. This behavior can be understood by the fact that the steel containing higher fraction of bainite in the microstructure has higher concentration of reversible traps and consequent larger diffusible hydrogen, leading to much slower diffusion kinetics of hydrogen atoms. Consequently, the susceptibility to hydrogen induced cracking (HIC) and sulfide stress cracking (SSC) of the steel with higher fraction of bainite increases significantly.