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Intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) exerts a negative impact on developing cardiomyocytes and emerging evidence suggests activation of oxidative stress pathways plays a key role in this altered development. Here, we provided pregnant guinea pig sows with PQQ, an aromatic tricyclic o-quinone that functions as a redox cofactor antioxidant, during the last half of gestation as a potential antioxidant intervention for IUGR-associated cardiomyopathy.
Pregnant guinea pig sows were randomly assigned to receive PQQ or placebo at mid gestation and fetuses were identified as spontaneous IUGR (spIUGR) or normal growth (NG) near term yielding four cohorts: NG ± PQQ and spIUGR ± PQQ. Cross sections of fetal left and right ventricles were prepared and cardiomyocyte number, collagen deposition, proliferation (Ki67) and apoptosis (TUNEL) were analyzed.
Cardiomyocyte endowment was reduced in spIUGR fetal hearts when compared to NG; however, PQQ exerted a positive effect on cardiomyocyte number in spIUGR hearts. Cardiomyocytes undergoing proliferation and apoptosis were more common in spIUGR ventricles when compared with NG animals, which was significantly reduced with PQQ supplementation. Similarly, collagen deposition was increased in spIUGR ventricles and was partially rescued in PQQ-treated spIUGR animals.
The negative influence of spIUGR on cardiomyocyte number, apoptosis, and collagen deposition during parturition can be suppressed by antenatal administration of PQQ to pregnant sows. These data identify a novel therapeutic intervention for irreversible spIUGR-associated cardiomyopathy.
Research demonstrates greater mortality and physical health morbidity in those with mental illness, as compared to the general population. National Health Service (NHS) England has introduced policies to reflect this and promote improvements in physical healthcare for mental health patients. Inpatient admission provides a valuable opportunity to action such recommendations and offer a detailed health review, guided by local frameworks. A new annual audit commenced in Cheshire and Wirral Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (CWP) assesses admission physical health screening on its adult acute inpatient wards.
Audit standard was 100% compliance to CWP's admission pathway (Policy CP35). Parameters included doctor's review, medical history, physical examination, drug history, medication chart, allergy status, venous thromboembolic risk, blood tests, electrocardiogram (ECG), physiological observations, smoking history, body mass index (BMI) and falls risk. Data were collected retrospectively for all patients admitted or transferred to Juniper Ward, an acute adult inpatient unit in Bowmere Hospital in Chester, during October 2020 (cycle 1) and September 2021 (cycle 2). Different months were assessed due to senior staff changes in October 2021.
30 patients were identified in 2020 and 37 in 2021. In 2020 the most consistently achieved parameters were, in order, medication chart/drug history, doctor's review and past medical history. In 2021 the most consistently achieved parameters were medication chart/drug history, smoking status and past medical history. Across both years completion of the cardiometabolic tool was lowest, although this improved from 6.7% to 16.2%. In 2020 there were 5 parameters achieving <50% compliance (cardiometabolic, physiological observations, smoking status, BMI and falls risk). In 2021 this reduced to 3 parameters (doctor's review, cardiometabolic tool, falls risk). Local policy was updated following the 2020 results, amending the criteria for doctor's review from commenced within 6 hours, to completed within 12 hours. Improvement was seen in all other areas in 2021, with medication chart/drug history documentation achieved in 100% of admissions.
Generalised improvement was seen following the 2020 audit, although only one parameter reached 100% compliance and most remained under 75%. The first cycle led to a policy change with respect to the doctor's review timeframe, although this limited direct comparison between years. A flow chart will be trialled on Juniper Ward, highlighting required tasks and assigning ownership to specific team members. The local Medical Education team were also made aware of the results to inform junior doctor induction. The audit will be repeated in Autumn 2022.
The burden of disease attributable to alcohol and other drug (AOD) use in young people is considerable. Prevention can be effective, yet few programs have demonstrated replicable effects. This study aimed to replicate research behind Climate Schools: Alcohol and Cannabis course among a large cohort of adolescents.
Seventy-one secondary schools across three States participated in a cluster-randomised controlled trial. Year 8 students received either the web-based Climate Schools: Alcohol and Cannabis course (Climate, n = 3236), or health education as usual (Control, n = 3150). Outcomes were measured via self-report and reported here for baseline, 6- and 12-months for alcohol and cannabis knowledge, alcohol, cannabis use and alcohol-related harms.
Compared to Controls, students in the Climate group showed greater increases in alcohol- [standardised mean difference (SMD) 0.51, p < 0.001] and cannabis-related knowledge (SMD 0.49, p < 0.001), less increases in the odds of drinking a full standard drink[(odds ratio (OR) 0.62, p = 0.014], and heavy episodic drinking (OR 0.49, p = 0.022). There was no evidence for differences in change over time in the odds of cannabis use (OR 0.57, p = 0.22) or alcohol harms (OR 0.73, p = 0.17).
The current study provides support for the effectiveness of the web-based Climate Schools: Alcohol and Cannabis course in increasing knowledge and reducing the uptake of alcohol. It represents one of the first trials of a web-based AOD prevention program to replicate alcohol effects in a large and diverse sample of students. Future research and/or adaptation of the program may be warranted with respect to prevention of cannabis use and alcohol harms.
Nutrigenomics is the study of how constituents of the diet interact with genes, and their products, to alter phenotype and, conversely, how genes and their products metabolise these constituents into nutrients, antinutrients, and bioactive compounds. Results from molecular and genetic epidemiological studies indicate that dietary unbalance can alter gene–nutrient interactions in ways that increase the risk of developing chronic disease. The interplay of human genetic variation and environmental factors will make identifying causative genes and nutrients a formidable, but not intractable, challenge. We provide specific recommendations for how to best meet this challenge and discuss the need for new methodologies and the use of comprehensive analyses of nutrient–genotype interactions involving large and diverse populations. The objective of the present paper is to stimulate discourse and collaboration among nutrigenomic researchers and stakeholders, a process that will lead to an increase in global health and wellness by reducing health disparities in developed and developing countries.
While research has shown community-based psychiatric care to be as good as, or better than, hospital-based care, generalisation to clinical practice has been difficult. This prospective, randomised controlled study examined a community-based approach feasible within NHS conditions. Ninety-four patients were randomly allocated to experimental and 78 to control treatments and followed for one year. The groups were well matched apart from an excess of psychotic control patients. No differences in clinical or social functioning outcome were found. Both groups improved substantially on clinical measures in the first six weeks, with some slow consolidation thereafter. There were three suicides in the control group and one in the experimental group. Access to care was better in the experimental group (93% attended assessment) than in the control group (75% attended assessment).
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