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Longitudinal evaluation of allograft diastolic function in paediatric heart transplant recipients is important for early detection of acute rejection, cardiac allograft vasculopathy, and graft dysfunction. Mean diastolic right atrial and pulmonary capillary wedge pressures obtained at catheterisation are the reference standards for assessment. Echocardiography is non-invasive and more suitable for serial surveillance, but individual parameters have lacked accuracy. This study aimed to identify covariates of post-transplant mean right atrial and pulmonary capillary wedge pressures, including B-type natriuretic peptide and certain echocardiographic parameters.
A retrospective review of 143 scheduled cardiac catheterisations and echocardiograms from 56 paediatric recipients transplanted from 2007 to 2011 was performed. Samples with rejection were excluded. Univariate and multivariate linear regression models using backward selection were applied to a database consisting of B-type natriuretic peptide, haemodynamic, and echocardiographic data.
Ln B-type natriuretic peptide, heart rate z-score, left ventricular end-diastolic dimension z-score, mitral E/e’, and percent interventricular septal thickening in systole were independently associated with mean right atrial pressure. Ln B-type natriuretic peptide, heart rate z-score, left ventricular end-diastolic dimension z-score, left ventricular mass (observed/predicted), and mitral E/e’ were independently associated with mean pulmonary capillary wedge pressure. Covariates of B-type natriuretic peptide included mean pulmonary artery and pulmonary capillary wedge pressures, height, haemoglobin, fractional shortening, percent interventricular septal thickening in systole, and pulmonary vascular resistance index.
B-type natriuretic peptide and echocardiographic indices of diastolic function were independently related to post-transplant mean right atrial and pulmonary capillary wedge pressures in paediatric heart transplant recipients without rejection.
We describe an adolescent with Streptococcus pneumoniae meningitis and symptomatic high-grade, second-degree atrioventricular block requiring permanent pacemaker placement. It is difficult to ascertain if these two diagnoses were independent or had a causal relationship though ongoing symptoms were not present prior to the infection. Because of this uncertainty, awareness that rhythm disturbances can be cardiac in origin but also secondary to other aetiologies, such as infection, is warranted.
Kinetoplastid parasites are responsible for both human and animal diseases across the globe where they have a great impact on health and economic well-being. Many species and life cycle stages are difficult to study due to limitations in isolation and culture, as well as to their existence as heterogeneous populations in hosts and vectors. Single-cell transcriptomics (scRNA-seq) has the capacity to overcome many of these difficulties, and can be leveraged to disentangle heterogeneous populations, highlight genes crucial for propagation through the life cycle, and enable detailed analysis of host–parasite interactions. Here, we provide a review of studies that have applied scRNA-seq to protozoan parasites so far. In addition, we provide an overview of sample preparation and technology choice considerations when planning scRNA-seq experiments, as well as challenges faced when analysing the large amounts of data generated. Finally, we highlight areas of kinetoplastid research that could benefit from scRNA-seq technologies.
Lacustrine sedimentary records and the proxies contained within them are valuable archives of past climate. However, the resolution of these records is frequently coarse or contains a high degree of uncertainty, making it difficult to resolve how climatic variability impacts the ecosystems on which humans depend. The goal of this study is to couple recent sediment cores sampled at centimeter-scale resolution with paleo- and historical information about lake levels to document how changes in the paleoenvironment impact the paleoecology of a rift basin lake. We present multiproxy data from three short cores collected from Ferguson's Gulf (FG), a shallow embayment connected to the western shore of Lake Turkana, Kenya. Five distinct biozones were interpreted on the basis of ostracods and geochemistry (δ18O, δ13C, and major elements), spanning the Little Ice Age (LIA) to the modern. Overall, ostracod total abundance and assemblage diversity decreased up-core, with the largest total abundance and genera diversity occurring during the LIA. This fits with regional datasets that indicate the Eastern Branch of the East African Rift System was wetter during the LIA than it is today. This also suggests that human impact in and around Lake Turkana has weakened the resiliency of the ecosystems in FG.
Mass asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 nucleic acid amplified testing of healthcare personnel (HCP) was performed at a large tertiary health system. A low period-prevalence of positive HCP was observed. Of those who tested positive, half had mild symptoms in retrospect. HCP with even mild symptoms should be isolated and tested.
To determine whether age, gender and marital status are associated with prognosis for adults with depression who sought treatment in primary care.
Medline, Embase, PsycINFO and Cochrane Central were searched from inception to 1st December 2020 for randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of adults seeking treatment for depression from their general practitioners, that used the Revised Clinical Interview Schedule so that there was uniformity in the measurement of clinical prognostic factors, and that reported on age, gender and marital status. Individual participant data were gathered from all nine eligible RCTs (N = 4864). Two-stage random-effects meta-analyses were conducted to ascertain the independent association between: (i) age, (ii) gender and (iii) marital status, and depressive symptoms at 3–4, 6–8,<Vinod: Please carry out the deletion of serial commas throughout the article> and 9–12 months post-baseline and remission at 3–4 months. Risk of bias was evaluated using QUIPS and quality was assessed using GRADE. PROSPERO registration: CRD42019129512. Pre-registered protocol https://osf.io/e5zup/.
There was no evidence of an association between age and prognosis before or after adjusting for depressive ‘disorder characteristics’ that are associated with prognosis (symptom severity, durations of depression and anxiety, comorbid panic disorderand a history of antidepressant treatment). Difference in mean depressive symptom score at 3–4 months post-baseline per-5-year increase in age = 0(95% CI: −0.02 to 0.02). There was no evidence for a difference in prognoses for men and women at 3–4 months or 9–12 months post-baseline, but men had worse prognoses at 6–8 months (percentage difference in depressive symptoms for men compared to women: 15.08% (95% CI: 4.82 to 26.35)). However, this was largely driven by a single study that contributed data at 6–8 months and not the other time points. Further, there was little evidence for an association after adjusting for depressive ‘disorder characteristics’ and employment status (12.23% (−1.69 to 28.12)). Participants that were either single (percentage difference in depressive symptoms for single participants: 9.25% (95% CI: 2.78 to 16.13) or no longer married (8.02% (95% CI: 1.31 to 15.18)) had worse prognoses than those that were married, even after adjusting for depressive ‘disorder characteristics’ and all available confounders.
Clinicians and researchers will continue to routinely record age and gender, but despite their importance for incidence and prevalence of depression, they appear to offer little information regarding prognosis. Patients that are single or no longer married may be expected to have slightly worse prognoses than those that are married. Ensuring this is recorded routinely alongside depressive ‘disorder characteristics’ in clinic may be important.
The first demonstration of laser action in ruby was made in 1960 by T. H. Maiman of Hughes Research Laboratories, USA. Many laboratories worldwide began the search for lasers using different materials, operating at different wavelengths. In the UK, academia, industry and the central laboratories took up the challenge from the earliest days to develop these systems for a broad range of applications. This historical review looks at the contribution the UK has made to the advancement of the technology, the development of systems and components and their exploitation over the last 60 years.
The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic forced American medical systems to adapt to high patient loads of respiratory disease. Its disruption of normal routines also brought opportunities for broader reform. The purpose of this article is to describe how the Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center (CRDAMC), a medium-sized Army hospital, capitalized on opportunities to advance its strategic aims during the pandemic. Specifically, the hospital sequentially adopted virtual video visits, surged on preventative screenings, and made-over its image to appeal to patients seeking urgent care. These campaigns supported COVID-19 efforts and larger strategic goals simultaneously, and they will endure for years to come. Predictably, CRDAMC encountered obstacles in the course of its transformation. These obstacles and their follow-on lessons are provided to assist future medical leaders seeking quantum change in the opportunities made available by health crises.
This study attempted to replicate whether a bias in probabilistic reasoning, or ‘jumping to conclusions’(JTC) bias is associated with being a sibling of a patient with schizophrenia spectrum disorder; and if so, whether this association is contingent on subthreshold delusional ideation.
Data were derived from the EUGEI project, a 25-centre, 15-country effort to study psychosis spectrum disorder. The current analyses included 1261 patients with schizophrenia spectrum disorder, 1282 siblings of patients and 1525 healthy comparison subjects, recruited in Spain (five centres), Turkey (three centres) and Serbia (one centre). The beads task was used to assess JTC bias. Lifetime experience of delusional ideation and hallucinatory experiences was assessed using the Community Assessment of Psychic Experiences. General cognitive abilities were taken into account in the analyses.
JTC bias was positively associated not only with patient status but also with sibling status [adjusted relative risk (aRR) ratio : 4.23 CI 95% 3.46–5.17 for siblings and aRR: 5.07 CI 95% 4.13–6.23 for patients]. The association between JTC bias and sibling status was stronger in those with higher levels of delusional ideation (aRR interaction in siblings: 3.77 CI 95% 1.67–8.51, and in patients: 2.15 CI 95% 0.94–4.92). The association between JTC bias and sibling status was not stronger in those with higher levels of hallucinatory experiences.
These findings replicate earlier findings that JTC bias is associated with familial liability for psychosis and that this is contingent on the degree of delusional ideation but not hallucinations.
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has migrated to regions that were initially spared, and it is likely that different populations are currently at risk for illness. Herein, we present our observations of the change in characteristics and resource use of COVID-19 patients over time in a national system of community hospitals to help inform those managing surge planning, operational management, and future policy decisions.
To determine risk factors for mortality among COVID-19 patients admitted to a system of community hospitals in the United States.
Retrospective analysis of patient data collected from the routine care of COVID-19 patients.
System of >180 acute-care facilities in the United States.
All admitted patients with positive identification of COVID-19 and a documented discharge as of May 12, 2020.
Determination of demographic characteristics, vital signs at admission, patient comorbidities and recorded discharge disposition in this population to construct a logistic regression estimating the odds of mortality, particular for those patients characterized as not being critically ill at admission.
In total, 6,180 COVID-19+ patients were identified as of May 12, 2020. Most COVID-19+ patients (4,808, 77.8%) were admitted directly to a medical-surgical unit with no documented critical care or mechanical ventilation within 8 hours of admission. After adjusting for demographic characteristics, comorbidities, and vital signs at admission in this subgroup, the largest driver of the odds of mortality was patient age (OR, 1.07; 95% CI, 1.06–1.08; P < .001). Decreased oxygen saturation at admission was associated with increased odds of mortality (OR, 1.09; 95% CI, 1.06–1.12; P < .001) as was diabetes (OR, 1.57; 95% CI, 1.21–2.03; P < .001).
The identification of factors observable at admission that are associated with mortality in COVID-19 patients who are initially admitted to non-critical care units may help care providers, hospital epidemiologists, and hospital safety experts better plan for the care of these patients.
Bayesian analysis of radiocarbon (14C) dates in North American archaeology is increasing, especially among archaeologists working in deeper time. However, historical archaeologists have been slow to embrace these new techniques, and there have been only a few examples of the incorporation of calendar dates as informative priors in Bayesian models in such work in the United States. To illustrate the value of Bayesian approaches to sites with both substantial earlier Native American occupations as well as a historic era European presence, we present the results of our Bayesian analysis of 14C dates from the earlier Guale village and the Mission period contexts from the Sapelo Shell Ring Complex (9MC23) in southern Georgia. Jefferies and Moore have explored the Spanish Mission period deposits at this site to better understand the Native American interactions with the Spanish during the 16th and 17th centuries along the Georgia Coast. Given the results of our Bayesian modeling, we can say with some degree of confidence that the deposits thus far excavated and sampled contain important information dating to the 17th-century mission on Sapelo Island. In addition, our modeling of new dates suggests the range of the pre-Mission era Guale village. Based on these new dates, we can now say with some degree of certainty which of the deposits sampled likely contain information that dates to one of the critical periods of Mission period research, the AD 1660–1684 period that ushered in the close of mission efforts on the Georgia Coast.
Self-determination theory is a generalized theory of behavior that focuses on motivation quality and psychological need satisfaction as preeminent behavioral determinants. The theory distinguishes between autonomous and controlled forms of motivation. Autonomous motivation reflects willingly engaging in behaviors for self-endorsed reasons, whereas controlled motivation reflects engaging in behavior for externally or internally pressured or controlled reasons. Satisfaction of the needs for autonomy, competence, and relatedness is necessary for optimal functioning and well-being, and influences the form of motivation, autonomous or controlled, experienced by individuals when acting. Autonomous motivation is consistently related to sustained behavior change and adaptive outcomes. Interventions to promote autonomous motivation have targeted psychological need support provided by social agents (e.g., leaders, managers, teachers, health professionals), particularly autonomy need support. Interventions using need-supportive techniques have demonstrated efficacy in promoting autonomous motivation, behavior change, and adaptive outcomes. Research has identified behaviors displayed, and language used, by social agents, or communicated by other means, that support autonomous motivation. Autonomy-support training programs have been developed to train social agents to promote autonomous motivation and behavior change. Future research needs to examine the unique and interactive effects of specific autonomy-support techniques, provide further evidence for long-term efficacy, and examine “dose” effects and long-term efficacy.
Biogenic nanoscale vanadium magnetite is produced by converting V(V)-bearing ferrihydrites through reductive transformation using the metal-reducing bacterium Geobacter sulfurreducens. With increasing vanadium in the ferrihydrite, the amount of V-doped magnetite produced decreased due to V-toxicity which interrupted the reduction pathway ferrihydrite–magnetite, resulting in siderite or goethite formation. Fe L2,3 and V L2,3 X-ray absorption spectra and data from X-ray magnetic circular dichroism analysis revealed the magnetite to contain the V in the Fe(III) Oh site, predominately as V(III) but always with a component of V(VI), present a consistent V(IV)/V(III) ratio in the range 0.28 to 0.33. The bacteriogenic production of V-doped magnetite nanoparticles from V-doped ferrihydrite is confirmed and the work reveals that microbial reduction of contaminant V(V) to V(III)/V(IV) in the environment will occur below the Fe-redox boundary where it will be immobilised in biomagnetite nanoparticles.
The coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic requires urgent modification to existing head and neck cancer diagnosis and management practices. A protocol was established that utilises risk stratification, early investigation prior to clinical review and a reduction in aerosol generating procedures to lessen the risk of coronavirus disease 2019 spread.
Two-week wait referrals were stratified into low, intermediate and high risk. Low risk patients were referred back to primary care with advice; intermediate and high risk patients underwent investigation. Clinical encounters and aerosol generating procedures were minimised. A combined diagnostic and therapeutic surgical approach was undertaken where possible.
Forty-one patients were used to assess feasibility. Thirty-one per cent were low risk, 35 per cent were intermediate and 33 per cent were high risk. Thirty-three per cent were discharged with no imaging.
Implementing this protocol reduces the future burden on tertiary services, by empowering primary care physicians to re-refer low risk patients. The protocol is applicable across the UK and avoids diagnostic delay.
Changed spatial configurations at sowing have been investigated as a strategy to minimize interspecific competition and improve the establishment and persistence of multi-species plantings in pastures, but the impact of this practice on the soil microbiome has received almost no previous research attention. Differences in populations of bacteria and fungi in the surface 10 cm of soil in the third year following pasture establishment were quantified using quantitative polymerase chain reaction and terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism methods. Populations were compared on, and between, drill rows sown to either the perennial grass phalaris (Phalaris aquatica L.), perennial legume lucerne (alfalfa; Medicago sativa L.) or the annual legume subterranean clover (Trifolium subterraneum L.). Results showed that soil microbial abundance and diversity were related to plant distribution across the field at the time of sampling and to soil chemical parameters including total carbon (C), mineral nitrogen (N), pH, and available phosphorus (P), potassium (K) and sulfur (S). Despite the 27-month lag since sowing, pasture species remained concentrated around the original drill row with very little colonization of the inter-row area. The abundance and diversity of bacterial and fungal populations were consistently greater under drill rows associated with higher total C concentrations in the surface soil compared with the inter-row areas. Our results showed that the pH and available nutrients were similar between the subterranean clover drill row and the inter-row, suggesting that soil microbial populations were not impacted directly by these soil fertility parameters, but rather were related to the presence or absence of plants. The abundance of bacteria and fungi were numerically lower under phalaris rows compared to rows sown to legumes. The richness and diversity of fungal populations were lowest between rows where lucerne was planted. Possible explanations for this observation include a lower C:N ratio of lucerne roots and/or a lack of fibrous roots at the soil surface compared to the other species, illustrating the influence of contrasting plant types on the soil microflora community. This study highlights the enduring legacy of the drill row on the spatial distribution of plants well into the pasture phase of a cropping rotation and discusses the opportunity to enhance the microbiome of cropping soils on a large scale during the pasture phase by increasing plant distribution across the landscape.
Deficits in executive functions may play a leading role in late-life suicide behaviours.
To determine whether executive functions, and more specifically cognitive inhibition, could be associated with increased risk of suicidal behaviours among depressed elderly individuals.
We compared 10 depressed suicide attempters aged 65 and older with 10 depressed suicide non-attempters matched for age, gender and education. To assess cognitive inhibition, we used neutral material, in the form of the Modified Card Sorting Test (MCST), Go-No-Go task (GNG) and Stroop test (ST). The Brixton Spatial Anticipation test (BSA), the dual-task performance and verbal fluencies test were also used to assess flexibility, planning tasks and memory.
Suicidal (mean, 75.30 years; 70% female) and non-suicidal (mean, 72.90 years; 70% female) depressed groups were comparable in terms of burden of physical illness and severity of depression according to the Hamilton Depression Scale (mean score 27.90, p = 0.529). Suicide attempters showed greater impairments in cognitive inhibition as illustrated by significant between-group differences in the number of MCST errors (p = 0.023) and MCST preservative errors (p = 0.035), and by the trend of worse performance on GNG (p = 0.052). No significant differences were found in the scores on ST, BSA, dual-task performance and in semantic or phonemic verbal fluencies. Furthermore, suicide attempt was also associated with GNG score (adjusted Odds Ratio = 0.25 [95CI = 0.07–0.95], p = 0.041) after adjustment for age.
Our case-control study shows that poor cognitive inhibition is associated with suicidal behaviours in late-life depression.
Previous studies using a modified Stroop test suggested that suicide attempters, in contrast to depressed patients with no suicidal history, display a particular attentional bias toward suicide-related cues. However, negative results have also been reported. In the present study, we collected new data and pooled them as part of a meta-analysis intended to shed further light on this question.
– a cross-sectional study comparing performance on the modified Stroop task for suicide-related, positively-valenced and negatively-valenced words in 33 suicide attempters and 46 patient controls with a history of mood disorders;
– a systematic review and a meta-analysis of studies comparing performance on the modified Stroop task among patients with vs. without a history of suicidal acts in mood disorders.
The cross-sectional study showed no significant difference in interference scores for any type of words between suicide attempters and patient controls. A meta-analysis of four studies, including 233 suicide attempters and 768 patient controls, showed a significant but small attentional bias toward suicide-related words (Hedges’g = 0.22; 95% CI [0.06 to 0.38]; Z = 2.73; P = 0.006), but not negatively-valenced words (Hedges’g = 0.06; 95% CI [−0.09 to 0.22]; Z = 0.77; P = 0.4) in suicide attempters compared to patient controls.
Positively-valenced words and healthy controls could not be assessed in the meta-analysis.
Our data support a selective information-processing bias among suicide attempters. Indirect evidence suggests that this effect would be state-related and may be a cognitive component of the suicidal crisis. However, we could not conclude about the clinical utility of this Stroop version at this stage.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.