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To investigate the association between suicide death and serum cholesterol levels as measured at times close to suicide death.
We conducted a nested case-control study of 41 cases of suicide deaths and 205 matched controls with serum total cholesterol (TC) levels till 3 years before suicide death in a large cohort of Japanese workers.
Individuals in the lowest versus highest tertile/predefined category of TC in a Japanese working population had a three- to four-fold greater risk of suicide death. Each 10 mg/dl decrement of average TC was associated with an 18% increased chance of suicide death (95% confidence interval, 2–35%). Similar results were found for TC levels at each year.
These results suggest that a low serum TC level in recent past is associated with an increased risk of suicide death.
To investigate the relationship between the severities of symptom dimensions in obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and white matter alterations.
We applied tract-based spatial statistics for diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) acquired by 3T magnetic resonance imaging. First, we compared fractional anisotropy (FA) between 20 OCD patients and 30 healthy controls (HC). Then, applying whole brain analysis, we searched the brain regions showing correlations between the severities of symptom dimensions assessed by Obsessive-Compulsive Inventory-Revised and FA in all participants. Finally, we calculated the correlations between the six symptom dimensions and multiple DTI measures [FA, axial diffusivity (AD), radial diffusivity (RD), mean diffusivity (MD)] in a region-of-interest (ROI) analysis and explored the differences between OCD patients and HC.
There were no between-group differences in FA or brain region correlations between the severities of symptom dimensions and FA in any of the participants. ROI analysis revealed negative correlations between checking severity and left inferior frontal gyrus white matter and left middle temporal gyrus white matter and a positive correlation between ordering severity and right precuneus in FA in OCD compared with HC. We also found negative correlations between ordering severity and right precuneus in RD, between obsessing severities and right supramarginal gyrus in AD and MD, and between hoarding severity and right insular gyrus in AD.
Our study supported the hypothesis that the severities of respective symptom dimensions are associated with different patterns of white matter alterations.
Nano-sized PtRu catalysts supported on carbon nanoparticles were synthesized by a polyol process. The PtRu catalyst prepared at pH=3 indicated higher catalysis for methanol oxidation than one prepared at pH=5.5. The samples were analyzed by techniques of the extended X-ray absorption fine structure (EXAFS), transmission electron microscope (TEM), X-ray diffraction (XRD) and X-ray fluorescence (XRF). Their results showed that the pH of the precursor solution during the polyol process affected the substructure of the PtRu nanoparticles. The correlation of the substructure with the catalytic activity was studied.
Two studies tested whether subjects with obsessive-compulsive disorder could successfully use BT STEPS, a computer-aided system, to perform self-assessment for self-treatment of obsessive-compulsive disorder by exposure and ritual prevention.
Subjects were given a self-guiding manual and could use a touch-tone telephone to access computer-controlled Interactive Voice Response interviews at their convenience from home. Using the BT STEPS system, patients rated themselves and worked out a plan for individually tailored self-exposure therapy.
Outcomes were similar in the two studies. Of the 63 subjects who used BT STEPS, 84% completed the self-assessment module. Most calls were made outside usual office hours. As expected, subjects did not improve merely by completing self-assessment. However, completion of self-assessment predicted later improvement with self-exposure therapy.
Most subjects successfully completed self-assessment using BT STEPS from their homes.
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