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There is a growing interest in studying individual differences in choices that involve trading off reward amount and delay to delivery because such choices have been linked to involvement in risky behaviors, such as substance abuse. The most ubiquitous proposal in psychology is to model these choices assuming delayed rewards lose value following a hyperbolic function, which has one free parameter, named discounting rate. Consequently, a fundamental issue is the estimation of this parameter. The traditional approach estimates each individual’s discounting rate separately, which discards individual differences during modeling and ignores the statistical structure of the population. The present work adopted a different approximation to parameter estimation: each individual’s discounting rate is estimated considering the information provided by all subjects, using state-of-the-art Bayesian inference techniques. Our goal was to evaluate whether individual discounting rates come from one or more subpopulations, using Mazur’s (1987) hyperbolic function. Twelve hundred eighty-four subjects answered the Intertemporal Choice Task developed by Kirby, Petry and Bickel (1999). The modeling techniques employed permitted the identification of subjects who produced random, careless responses, and who were discarded from further analysis. Results showed that one-mixture hierarchical distribution that uses the information provided by all subjects suffices to model individual differences in delay discounting, suggesting psychological variability resides along a continuum rather than in discrete clusters. This different approach to parameter estimation has the potential to contribute to the understanding and prediction of decision making in various real-world situations where immediacy is constantly in conflict with magnitude.
Stable isotopes have been used historically to track food webs. Our approach used a combination of δ13C and radiocarbon (14C) dating to identify carbon sources in cave shrimp within caves of the Karstic Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico. Three sister species of stygobitic Typhlatya shrimps were collected from the cenote pool (cenote hereafter), cavern and cave hydro regions. New and previously reported 14C and δ13C values of whole tissues from the organisms were determined at the AMS laboratory (LEMA) of the Institute of Physics of the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México. This new set of isotopic values of biomass and potential sources were incorporated into the Bayesian Mixing Modeling Software SIAR. In two hypothetical scenarios, the contribution from each feeding source among three species of the Typhlatya genus was determined. Slight differences were also observed between isotopic values of two groups of the same species collected in two distant cenote pools, suggesting this species may feed on a wider array of sources than previously found, and that the oligotrophic environment may have a strong influence on cave shrimp diet.
To examine differences in the availability, variety and distribution of foods and beverages sold at street food stands (SFS) across neighbourhood income levels in Mexico City.
Twenty neighbourhoods representing low-, middle- and high-income levels in Mexico City.
Direct observations of SFS (n 391).
The availability of healthy foods such as fruits/vegetables was high in middle- and high-income neighbourhoods, whereas the availability of unhealthy foods such as processed snacks was higher in low-income neighbourhoods. However, statistically significant differences in food availability across neighbourhoods were only observed for dairy and processed snack items (P < 0·05). Similarly, differences in variety were only observed for cereal and processed snacks (P < 0·05). No statistically significant differences were seen for variety of fruits/vegetable across neighbourhood income levels (P > 0·05). No statistically significant differences across neighbourhood income levels were observed for beverage availability and variety (P > 0·05). Although street foods and beverages were often distributed near homes, public transportation centres and worksites, no differences were observed across neighbourhood income levels (P > 0·05).
Findings suggest that SFS can be a source of both unhealthy foods and healthy foods for communities across neighbourhoods in Mexico City. Additional studies are needed to assess the relationship between street food and beverage availability, and consumption.
To use Internet search data to compare duration of compliance for various diets.
Using a passive surveillance digital epidemiological approach, we estimated the average duration of diet compliance by examining monthly Internet searches for recipes related to popular diets. We fit a mathematical model to these data to estimate the time spent on a diet by new January dieters (NJD) and to estimate the percentage of dieters dropping out during the American winter holiday season between Thanksgiving and the end of December.
Internet searches in the USA for recipes related to popular diets over a 15-year period from 2004 to 2019.
Individuals in the USA performing Internet searches for recipes related to popular diets.
All diets exhibited significant seasonality in recipe-related Internet searches, with sharp spikes every January followed by a decline in the number of searches and a further decline in the winter holiday season. The Paleo diet had the longest average compliance times among NJD (5.32 ± 0.68 weeks) and the lowest dropout during the winter holiday season (only 14 ± 3 % dropping out in December). The South Beach diet had the shortest compliance time among NJD (3.12 ± 0.64 weeks) and the highest dropout during the holiday season (33 ± 7 % dropping out in December).
The current study is the first of its kind to use passive surveillance data to compare the duration of adherence with different diets and underscores the potential usefulness of digital epidemiological approaches to understanding health behaviours.
The complex geographical scenario of Mexico allowed the cultural diversification and development of multiple cultures such as Tolteca, Teotihuacan, Mexica, and Maya, among others. Despite this rich cultural heritage, radiometric dating of Mexican cultural samples with radiocarbon (14C) began only in the 1980s and with accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) in 2013. Analysis of 14C with AMS is the most widely used technique to date archaeological objects and cultural heritage. Since 2013, the Accelerator Mass Spectrometry Laboratory (LEMA) facility of the Institute of Physics at UNAM (IF-UNAM) has supported archaeological research in Mexico, but also investigation in other areas such as geology, physics, chemistry, and environmental sciences through the analysis of 14C, 10Be, 26Al, 129I, and Pu. The absolute dating with 14C continues to be the core of LEMA’s work, where different geographical scenarios of the country and climatic conditions present very diverse analytical challenges. This work presents a basic description of the AMS system of the LEMA laboratory and describes some applications that are currently being developed.
Between April 2008 and July 2015, we conducted a total of 18 trips on five different side-haul trawlers fishing within the Argentine Exclusive Economic Zone, monitoring 486 hauls. We observed 100% of the hauls and monitored trawl cables for 136.7 hours, about 5% of the trawl effort, to identify the levels of seabird bycatch from net entanglements and collisions with trawl cables. A total of 35 net entanglements of White-chinned Petrels Procellaria aequinoctialis, Great Shearwaters Ardenna gravis, Black-browed Albatrosses Thalassarche melanophris and Southern Royal Albatross Diomedea epomophora were recorded, all of which occurred during the autumn and winter. Additionally, 656 seabird collisions against trawl cables were recorded including 39 heavy, 96 medium and 521 light. Further, we recorded nine Black-browed Albatrosses and two Great Shearwaters potentially dead. Although in the study fishery the number of deaths in the trawl cables could surpass the number of birds incidentally killed in nets, the mortality rate caused by the latter type of interaction far exceeds those observed in nets from other trawl fisheries operating in the Patagonian Shelf. Fortunately, 26% of the seabirds entangled in the net were recovered and released alive, which indicates that awareness and training in safe bird handling and release may improve captured seabird survival rates. The main objectives of this work is to highlight a little-studied source of seabird mortality by entanglement, to generate discussion on potential technical mitigation measures for side-haul trawl fisheries, and to propose crew training in safe handling and release of seabirds as an immediate mitigation measure.
The following position statement from the Union of the European Phoniatricians, updated on 25th May 2020 (superseding the previous statement issued on 21st April 2020), contains a series of recommendations for phoniatricians and ENT surgeons who provide and/or run voice, swallowing, speech and language, or paediatric audiology services.
This material specifically aims to inform clinical practices in countries where clinics and operating theatres are reopening for elective work. It endeavours to present a current European view in relation to common procedures, many of which fall under the aegis of aerosol generating procedures.
As evidence continues to build, some of the recommended practices will undoubtedly evolve, but it is hoped that the updated position statement will offer clinicians precepts on safe clinical practice.
Public hospital systems have struggled to identify ways of cutting costs while improving quality of mental health treatment, even more since the economic downturn.
To compare mental health care expenditures and quality in two large sites, Boston and Madrid, and to analyze the amount of the expenditure corresponding to pharmacy, ER, outpatient and inpatient care.
Data are mental health electronic records from three hospitals in Madrid (n=31,183 person-years) and in Boston(n=8,805). Adequacy of care was measured as four or more visits within the last year. Unadjusted comparisons of variables were conducted using t-tests. Multivariate generalized linear regression models were computed with log link and residual variance proportional to mean squared, adjusting for covariates. Results were also adjusted for World Bank Purchasing Power Parity and converted to U.S. dollars.
The annual average treatment expenditure is $4,874 in Boston and $2,693 in Madrid . Boston patients had a bigger percentage of use (13,6% vs 5,3%) and greater annual expenditure ($25,175 vs $15,470) for inpatient services (p<0,05). Conversely, Madrid patients used and spent more on outpatient treatments (87% vs 84%;$1,670 vs $1,378;p<0,05). Being in the Boston site, having a bipolar, psychotic or alcohol disorder was a significant positive predictor of total expenditure. Adequacy of care was bigger in Boston (32,8% vs 23,1%)
Emphasis on outpatient care appears to reduce inpatient stays and global expenditures. An earlier recognition due to a more open access to treatments in Spain may help decreasing costs. Bipolar, psychotic and alcohol disorders imply bigger costs.
The use of valid and practical screening scales might ease the burden for greatly needed universal testing for mental health, substance use and dual disorders, but do they work well with all populations? Do they miss correct identification of certain groups?
To understand discrepancies in diagnostic prediction using the AC-OK screen in conjunction with other standardized assessment scales.
Two hundred and twenty-six Latino participants were recruited from primary care and community clinics in Madrid, Barcelona and Boston and assessed with standardized mental health and substance abuse measures including the AC-OK screen and with a Computerized adaptive test for mental health (CAT-MH). A measure of frequency of discrepancies and an adjusted and unadjusted comparison of results and demographic characteristics or respondents were made for mental health, substance abuse or for discrepancies in both categories.
35.4% of cases were discrepant in mental health (AC-OK-Mental Health vs. Patient Health Questionnaire-9, Generalized Anxiety Disorder 7 or PTSD Checklist) and 14.2% in substance abuse (AC-OK-substance abuse vs. drug abuse screening test or Alcohol use disorders identification test). When CAT-MH scale was incorporated, discrepant results were found in 24.3% and 14.2%, respectively. No association was found between substance abuse discrepancies and patient demographics. In logit regressions being from Barcelona, of younger age and male were significant predictors of discrepancies.
Discrepancies were observed in the diagnostic prediction, with differences detected for site and sociodemographic characteristics of participants suggesting the importance of testing screeners for site and population differences. Evidence for the misclassification of young males is discussed. Caution is warranted in the implementation of screeners for at risk populations.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
Several photocatalysts, based on titanium dioxide, were synthesized by spark anodization techniques and anodic spark oxidation. Photocatalytic activity was determined by methylene blue oxidation and the catalytic activities of the catalysts were evaluated after 70 hours of reaction. Scanning Electron Microscopy and X Ray Diffraction analysis were used to characterize the catalysts. The photocatalyst prepared with a solution of sulfuric acid and 100 V presented the best performance in terms of oxidation of the dye (62%). The electric potential during the synthesis (10 V, low potential; 100 V, high potential) affected the surface characteristics: under low potential, catalyst presented smooth and homogeneous surfaces with spots (high TiO2 concentration) of amorphous solids; under low potential, catalyst presented porous surfaces with crystalline solids homogeneously distributed.
The purpose of this work was the synthesis of the perovskites with rare earth, by gel combustion method with pigmenting, magnetic and luminescent properties. The synthesis of perovskite structure is important for material development, with multi features. In this work, the synthesis was from metal oxides by the method of combustion of gels at 500 °C, for 10 s. Color of perovskites obtained, with nanometric particle size (31-44 nm) was analysed by CIEL*a*b* with tonalities ranged from white to pink except for Pr-perovskites with yellow and brown. Its paramagnetic properties were verified by magnetic susceptibility. Its luminescence was at 260 nm, except for Pr-perovskites. This work opens an important opportunity to develop ceramic pigments with perovskites structures integrating other properties as luminescence and paramagnetism by combustion sol-gel method.
A simple and facile stereolithography 3D printing technique was utilized to fabricate piezoelectric photopolymer-based polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) blends. Different process variables, such as solvent (N,N-dimethylformamide, DMF) to PVDF ratio and PVDF solution to photopolymer resin (PR) ratio, were engineered to enhance the dispersion of the PVDF into the PR so as to achieve the maximum piezoelectric coupling coefficient. Our results demonstrate that a ratio of 1:10 (PVDF:DMF) and 2 wt%-PVDF/PR was optimal for the best dissolution of the PVDF, 3D printability, and piezoelectric properties. Under these conditions, the blend generated ±0.121 nA under 80 N dynamic loading excitation. We believe that the findings of this work would promote many further studies on the mass production of flexible piezoelectric polymer blends with higher quality finished surface and design flexibility.
Floriculture value exceeds $5.8 billion in the United States. Environmental challenges, market trends, and diseases complicate breeding priorities. To inform breeders’ and geneticists’ research efforts, we set out to gather consumers’ preferences in the form of willingness to pay (WTP) for different rose attributes in a discrete choice experiment. The responses are modeled in WTP space, using polynomials to account for heterogeneity. Consumer preferences indicate that heat and disease tolerance were the most important aspects for subjects in the sample, followed by drought resistance. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to identify breeding priorities in rosaceous plants from a consumer perspective.
There is no suitable vaccine against human visceral leishmaniasis (VL) and available drugs are toxic and/or present high cost. In this context, diagnostic tools should be improved for clinical management and epidemiological evaluation of disease. However, the variable sensitivity and/or specificity of the used antigens are limitations, showing the necessity to identify new molecules to be tested in a more sensitive and specific serology. In the present study, an immunoproteomics approach was performed in Leishmania infantum promastigotes and amastigotes employing sera samples from VL patients. Aiming to avoid undesired cross-reactivity in the serological assays, sera from Chagas disease patients and healthy subjects living in the endemic region of disease were also used in immunoblottings. The most reactive spots for VL samples were selected, and 29 and 21 proteins were identified in the promastigote and amastigote extracts, respectively. Two of them, endonuclease III and GTP-binding protein, were cloned, expressed, purified and tested in ELISA experiments against a large serological panel, and results showed high sensitivity and specificity values for the diagnosis of disease. In conclusion, the identified proteins could be considered in future studies as candidate antigens for the serodiagnosis of human VL.
We read with interest the recent editorial, “The Hennepin Ketamine Study,” by Dr. Samuel Stratton commenting on the research ethics, methodology, and the current public controversy surrounding this study.1 As researchers and investigators of this study, we strongly agree that prospective clinical research in the prehospital environment is necessary to advance the science of Emergency Medical Services (EMS) and emergency medicine. We also agree that accomplishing this is challenging as the prehospital environment often encounters patient populations who cannot provide meaningful informed consent due to their emergent conditions. To ensure that fellow emergency medicine researchers understand the facts of our work so they may plan future studies, and to address some of the questions and concerns in Dr. Stratton’s editorial, the lay press, and in social media,2 we would like to call attention to some inaccuracies in Dr. Stratton’s editorial, and to the lay media stories on which it appears to be based.
Ho JD, Cole JB, Klein LR, Olives TD, Driver BE, Moore JC, Nystrom PC, Arens AM, Simpson NS, Hick JL, Chavez RA, Lynch WL, Miner JR. The Hennepin Ketamine Study investigators’ reply. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2019;34(2):111–113
In the current study, phage-exposed mimotopes as targets against tegumentary leishmaniasis (TL) were selected by means of bio-panning cycles employing sera of TL patients and healthy subjects, besides the immune stimulation of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) collected from untreated and treated TL patients and healthy subjects. The clones were evaluated regarding their specific interferon-γ (IFN-γ) and interleukin-4 (IL-4) production in the in vitro cultures, and selectivity and specificity values were calculated, and those presenting the best results were selected for the in vivo experiments. Two clones, namely A4 and A8, were identified and used in immunization protocols from BALB/c mice to protect against Leishmania amazonensis infection. Results showed a polarized Th1 response generated after vaccination, being based on significantly higher levels of IFN-γ, IL-2, IL-12, tumour necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF); which were associated with lower production of specific IL-4, IL-10 and immunoglobulin G1 (IgG1) antibodies. Vaccinated mice presented significant reductions in the parasite load in the infected tissue and distinct organs, when compared with controls. In conclusion, we presented a strategy to identify new mimotopes able to induce Th1 response in PBMCs from TL patients and healthy subjects, and that were successfully used to protect against L. amazonensis infection.
Thousands of new asteroids are discovered every year and the rate of discovery is by far larger than the determination rate of their physical properties. In 2015 a group of researchers and students of several Mexican institutions have established an observational program to study asteroids photometrically. The program, named Mexican Asteroid Photometry Campaign, is aiming to derive rotation periods of asteroids based on optical photometric observations. Since then four campaigns have been carried out. The results obtained throughout these campaigns, as well as future work, are presented.
Chemical modification of kraft lignin from Pinus caribaea (Sénécl.) W.H.G. was performed with cyclic anhydrides (succinic, maleic and glutaric) assisted by microwave radiation. Esterification of the lignin was proven by the mass increase and Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy. Aqueous suspensions of bentonite were prepared using unmodified lignin and the corresponding derivatives as dispersants. Suspensions were evaluated in term of stability, viscosity and dispersibility. The esterified derivatives showed better dispersing properties than the neat lignin because the derivatives-based suspensions were less viscous. The dispersing properties of lignin and the esterified derivatives were compared with those of a high-molecular-weight lignin fraction obtained by ultrafiltration. In addition, two commercial lignosulfonate dispersants commonly used for drilling muds were used as references. The high-molecular-weight esterified derivatives proved to be better dispersants than their unfractionated counterparts. In general, the esterified derivatives showed similar properties to those obtained with the commercial dispersants. Modified lignin based on succinic-, maleic- and glutaric-anhydride is expected to play a key role in the design of novel bio-based dispersants for drilling-mud applications.