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The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has resulted in shortages of personal protective equipment (PPE), underscoring the urgent need for simple, efficient, and inexpensive methods to decontaminate masks and respirators exposed to severe acute respiratory coronavirus virus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). We hypothesized that methylene blue (MB) photochemical treatment, which has various clinical applications, could decontaminate PPE contaminated with coronavirus.
The 2 arms of the study included (1) PPE inoculation with coronaviruses followed by MB with light (MBL) decontamination treatment and (2) PPE treatment with MBL for 5 cycles of decontamination to determine maintenance of PPE performance.
MBL treatment was used to inactivate coronaviruses on 3 N95 filtering facepiece respirator (FFR) and 2 medical mask models. We inoculated FFR and medical mask materials with 3 coronaviruses, including SARS-CoV-2, and we treated them with 10 µM MB and exposed them to 50,000 lux of white light or 12,500 lux of red light for 30 minutes. In parallel, integrity was assessed after 5 cycles of decontamination using multiple US and international test methods, and the process was compared with the FDA-authorized vaporized hydrogen peroxide plus ozone (VHP+O3) decontamination method.
Overall, MBL robustly and consistently inactivated all 3 coronaviruses with 99.8% to >99.9% virus inactivation across all FFRs and medical masks tested. FFR and medical mask integrity was maintained after 5 cycles of MBL treatment, whereas 1 FFR model failed after 5 cycles of VHP+O3.
MBL treatment decontaminated respirators and masks by inactivating 3 tested coronaviruses without compromising integrity through 5 cycles of decontamination. MBL decontamination is effective, is low cost, and does not require specialized equipment, making it applicable in low- to high-resource settings.
Diet has a major influence on the composition and metabolic output of the gut microbiome. Higher-protein diets are often recommended for older consumers; however, the effect of high-protein diets on the gut microbiota and faecal volatile organic compounds (VOC) of elderly participants is unknown. The purpose of the study was to establish if the faecal microbiota composition and VOC in older men are different after a diet containing the recommended dietary intake (RDA) of protein compared with a diet containing twice the RDA (2RDA). Healthy males (74⋅2 (sd 3⋅6) years; n 28) were randomised to consume the RDA of protein (0⋅8 g protein/kg body weight per d) or 2RDA, for 10 weeks. Dietary protein was provided via whole foods rather than supplementation or fortification. The diets were matched for dietary fibre from fruit and vegetables. Faecal samples were collected pre- and post-intervention for microbiota profiling by 16S ribosomal RNA amplicon sequencing and VOC analysis by head space/solid-phase microextraction/GC-MS. After correcting for multiple comparisons, no significant differences in the abundance of faecal microbiota or VOC associated with protein fermentation were evident between the RDA and 2RDA diets. Therefore, in the present study, a twofold difference in dietary protein intake did not alter gut microbiota or VOC indicative of altered protein fermentation.
Purposeful qualitative modelling of embodiment function relations is a challenge in embodiment design. This contribution investigates the applicability and usefulness of the Contact and Channel Approach as a qualitative modelling approach in a survey study. From 23 development and research projects, advantages and challenges regarding applicability and usefulness are identified. A further result is that many different models are used additionally to the Contact and Channel Approach. Based on the findings, research potential for optimization and development of links to other models emerges.
Bulimia nervosa (BN) is a highly disabling disorder with severe health consequences. In a stepped care approach the NICE (National Institute of Clinical Excellence) guidelines recommend the application of guided self-help as a first step in the treatment of bulimia nervosa before continuing with face-to-face psychotherapy. Most of the self-help supports - available as books, CD-Rom or on an Internet surface - are based on cognitive behavioural concepts and have been proven to be effective. In this workshop we will present advantages of this treatment approach and provide you with a survey of research work implementing new technologies in the treatment of BN. We will give you an insight into the treatment modules involved in SALUT - BN developed by Netunion in cooperation with the University of Geneva and present the latest results and longterm outcome of a RCT comparing Internet-based Self program for BN with bibliotherapy.
Surface based MRI methods are a promising approach for the identification of cerebral shape alterations in schizophrenia . In particular, investigating gyrification might offer important evidence for disturbed neurodevelopmental mechanisms in schizophrenia.
The present study is the first to compare on a vertex - wise basis mean curvature as a sensitive parameter for the identification of local gyrification changes in first episode schizophrenia.
54 patients with first-episode schizophrenia and 54 healthy control subjects underwent high-resolution T1-weighted MRI scans. Surface extraction and mean curvature calculation was performed using the Freesurfer Software package. Statistical cortical maps were created to estimate gyrification differences between groups.
A significantly increased gyrification was detected in patients relative to controls in a large right parahippocampal-lingual cortex area. A further analysis of cortical thickness of this cluster revealed concurrent significant reduced cortical thickness in patients.
This is the first study to reveal an aberrant gyrification of the medial surface in first episode schizophrenia on basis of a vertex - wise analysis of local gyrification changes of the entire cortex. Both affected areas, the parahippocampal and the lingual cortex, are of high pathophysiological relevance for schizophrenia. Thus, our data provided new in vivo evidence for an early maturational deficit of these cortical areas in schizophrenia .
The aim of this study was to detect longitudinal differences in white matter brain structures in adults with schizophrenia compared to healthy controls.
Twenty adult patients with multi-episode schizophrenia under stable antipsychotic medication and twenty-two age- and sex-matched healthy subjects were included in the study. Diffusion Tensor Imaging (DTI) was applied at baseline (t1), after 6weeks (t2) and after 3months (t3) and data processing was done with tract-based spatial statistics (p<0.05, corrected). Two subjects in the schizophrenic sample dropped out at t2 and one healthy subject at t3. Clinical and neuropsychological variables were measured and correlated with the most significant DTI findings.
Compared with healthy age- and sex-matched controls schizophrenic patients showed widespread decreases in mean fractional anisotropy values (p<0.05, corrected). The most obvious FA decrease in the long-term was found in the anterior part of the corpus callosum (p<0.005, corrected), the left temporal lobe (p<0.004, corr.) and the mid-cingulate gyrus bilateral (p<0.004, corr.). Correlations to demographic variables, clinical rating scales (PANSS, CGI and GAF), verbal learning and memory and working memory will be presented.
Magnetic resonance imaging was able to detect altered structural connectivity in patients with multi-episode schizophrenia in a longitudinal design.
Although male and female patients with major depression (MDD) differ in psychopathology and other illness characteristics, a potentially confounding effect of gender has not been systematically controlled or investigated in most of the previous neuroimaging studies.
We investigated activation patterns during processing of ambiguous stimuli in MDD by functional MRI.
We aimed at examining potential activation differences between male and female patients.
A matching task was employed in which two stimuli with varying degrees of perceptual uncertainty had to be compared with respect to their sameness. Eighteen patients meeting DSM-IV criteria of MDD and eighteen healthy control subjects participated in this study.
Whereas on the level of behavioral performance no significant group differences could be detected we found distinct disorder- and gender-related differences in the brain activation. Patients activated significantly stronger in superior parietal, prefrontal and cingulate regions. Gender specific analyses revealed that the hyperactivity in the patient group was mainly attributable to hyperactivity in the male patients who activated significantly stronger than the female patients in an extensive fronto-temporo-limbic network, which partly overlapped with the network we found when comparing patients and healthy controls.
Our results indicate that male patients seem to be reliant on a significantly stronger metabolism in task-relevant regions to maintain an equal level of performance.
The present results provide evidence for gender-related differences in the functional organization of the brain in patients with MDD. Gender differences should be taken into consideration when investigating the neural correlates of MDD.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
Gene × environment (G × E) interactions in eating pathology have been increasingly investigated, however studies have been limited by sample size due to the difficulty of obtaining genetic data.
To synthesize existing G × E research in the eating disorders (ED) field and provide a clear picture of the current state of knowledge with analyses of larger samples.
Complete data from seven studies investigating community (n = 1750, 64.5% female) and clinical (n = 426, 100% female) populations, identified via systematic review, were included. Data were combined to perform five analyses: 5-HTTLPR × Traumatic Life Events (0–17 events) to predict ED status (n = 909), 5-HTTLPR × Sexual and Physical Abuse (n = 1097) to predict bulimic symptoms, 5-HTLPR × Depression to predict bulimic symptoms (n = 1256), and 5-HTTLPR × Impulsivity to predict disordered eating (n = 1149).
The low function (s) allele of 5-HTTLPR interacted with number of traumatic life events (P < .01) and sexual and physical abuse (P < .05) to predict increased likelihood of an ED in females but not males (Fig. 1). No other G × E interactions were significant, possibly due to the medium to low compatibility between datasets (Fig. 1).
Early promising results suggest that increased knowledge of G × E interactions could be achieved if studies increased uniformity of measuring ED and environmental variables, allowing for continued collaboration to overcome the restrictions of obtaining genetic samples.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
Hand hygiene compliance rates were estimated using direct observations. An AHHMS, installed on 4 nursing units in a sequential manner, determined hand hygiene performance rates, expressed as the number of hand hygiene events performed upon entering and exiting patient rooms divided by the number of room entries and exits. Additional strategies implemented to improve hand hygiene included goal setting, hospital leadership support, feeding AHHMS data back to healthcare personnel, and use of Toyota Kata performance improvement methods. HAIs were defined using National Healthcare Safety Network criteria.
Hand hygiene compliance rates generated by direct observation were substantially higher than performance rates generated by the AHHMS. Installation of the AHHMS without supplementary activities did not yield sustained improvement in hand hygiene performance rates. Implementing several supplementary strategies resulted in a statistically significant 85% increase in hand hygiene performance rates (P < .0001). The incidence density of non–Clostridioies difficile HAIs decreased by 56% (P = .0841), while C. difficile infections increased by 60% (P = .0533) driven by 2 of the 4 study units.
Implementation of an AHHMS, when combined with several supplementary strategies as part of a multimodal program, resulted in significantly improved hand hygiene performance rates. Reductions in non–C. difficile HAIs occurred but were not statistically significant.
The characterization of modern pollen rain assemblages along environmental gradients is an essential prerequisite for reliable interpretations of fossil pollen records. In this study, we identify pollen-vegetation relationships using modern pollen rain assemblages in moss polsters (n = 13) and lake sediment surface samples (n = 11) along a steep temperature gradient of 7°C (3100–4200 m above sea level) on the western Andean Cordillera, Ecuador. The pollen rain is correlated to vascular plant abundance data recorded in vegetation relevées (n = 13). Results show that pollen spectra from both moss polsters and sediment surface samples reflect changes in species composition along the temperature gradient, despite overrepresentation of upper montane forest taxa in the latter. Estimated pollen transport distance for a lake (Laguna Llaviucu) situated in a steep upper montane forest valley is 1–2 km, while a lake (Laguna Pallcacocha) in the páramo captures pollen input from a distance of up to 10–40 km. Weinmannia spp., Podocarpus spp., and Hedyosmum sp. are indicators of local upper montane forest vegetation, while Phlegmariurus spp. and Plantago spp. are indicators for local páramo vegetation.
Excessive mobilization of body reserves during the transition from pregnancy to lactation imposes a risk for metabolic diseases on dairy cows. We aimed to establish an experimental model for high v. normal mobilization and herein characterized performance, metabolic and endocrine changes from 7 weeks antepartum (a.p.) to 12 weeks postpartum (p.p.). Fifteen weeks a.p., 38 pregnant multiparous Holstein cows were allocated to two groups that were fed differently to reach either high or normal body condition scores (HBCS: 7.2 NEL MJ/kg dry matter (DM); NBCS: 6.8 NEL MJ/kg DM) at dry-off. Allocation was also based on differences in body condition score (BCS) in the previous and the ongoing lactation that was further promoted by feeding to reach the targeted BCS and back fat thickness (BFT) at dry-off (HBCS: >3.75 and >1.4 cm; NBCS: <3.5 and <1.2 cm). Thereafter, both groups were fed identical diets. Blood samples were drawn weekly from 7 weeks a.p. to 12 weeks p.p. to assess the serum concentrations of metabolites and hormones. The HBCS cows had greater BCS, BFT and BW than the NBCS cows throughout the study and lost more than twice as much BFT during the first 7 weeks p.p. compared with NCBS. Milk yield and composition were not different between groups, except that lactose concentrations were greater in NBSC than in HBCS. Feed intake was also greater in NBCS, and NBCS also reached a positive energy balance earlier than HBCS. The greater reduction in body mass in HBCS was accompanied by greater concentrations of non-esterified fatty acids, and β-hydroxybutyrate in serum after calving than in NBCS, indicating increased lipomobilization and ketogenesis. The mean concentrations of insulin across all time-points were greater in HBCS than in NBCS. In both groups, insulin and IGF-1 concentrations were lower p.p than in a.p. Greater free thyroxine (fT4) concentrations and a lower free 3-3′-5-triiodothyronine (fT3)/fT4 ratio were observed in HBCS than in NBCS a.p., whereas p.p. fT3/fT4 ratio followed a reverse pattern. The variables indicative for oxidative status had characteristic time courses; group differences were limited to greater plasma ferric reducing ability values in NBSC. The results demonstrate that the combination of pre-selection according to BCS and differential feeding before dry-off to promote the difference was successful in obtaining cows that differ in the intensity of mobilizing body reserves. The HBCS cows were metabolically challenged due to intense mobilization of body fat, associated with reduced early lactation dry matter intake and compromised antioxidative capacity.
One of the Leishmania species known to be non-infective to humans is Leishmania (Mundinia) enriettii whose vertebrate host is the guinea pig Cavia porcellus. It is a good model for cutaneous leishmaniasis, chemotherapeutic and molecular studies. In the last years, an increased interest has emerged concerning the L. (Mundinia) subgenus after the finding of Leishmania (M.) macropodum in Australia and with the description of other new/putative species such as L. (M.) martiniquensis and ‘L. (M.) siamensis’. This review focused on histopathology, glycoconjugates and innate immunity. The presence of Leishmania RNA virus and shedding of extracellular vesicles by the parasite were also evaluated.
Identifying the transmission sources and reservoirs of Streptococcus pneumoniae (SP) is a long-standing question for pneumococcal epidemiology, transmission dynamics, and vaccine policy. Here we use serotype to identify SP transmission and examine acquisitions (in the same household, local community, and county, or of unidentified origin) in a longitudinal cohort of children and adults from the Navajo Nation and the White Mountain Apache American Indian Tribes. We found that adults acquire SP relatively more in the household than other age groups, and children 2–8 years old typically acquire in their own or surrounding communities. Age-specific transmission probability matrices show that transmissions within household were mostly seen from older to younger siblings. Outside the household, children most often transmit to other children in the same age group, showing age-assortative mixing behavior. We find toddlers and older children to be most involved in SP transmission and acquisition, indicating their role as key drivers of SP epidemiology. Although infants have high carriage prevalence, they do not play a central role in transmission of SP compared with toddlers and older children. Our results are relevant to inform alternative pneumococcal conjugate vaccine dosing strategies and analytic efforts to inform optimization of vaccine programs, as well as assessing the transmission dynamics of pathogens transmitted by close contact in general.
Cirratulid polychaetes are abundant and diverse members of the benthic macrofauna and their particle collection mechanisms may strongly affect particle mixing and sediment grain size distribution in sediments. The feeding morphology differs in having a pair or many feeding tentacles and the ecological importance of both methods of food collection needs to be better investigated to understand their costs and benefits. Particle selection and feeding behaviour of a bitentaculate (Aphelochaeta honouliuli) and a multitentaculate species (Timarete hawaiensis) were comparatively observed. Feeding behaviour observations were done with individuals with or without feeding tentacles and exposed to three different size ranges of glass beads (0–20, 40–70 and 70–110 µm in diameter). Particle selection was tested for coated and uncoated glass beads of three different size ranges in 20 specimens of each species. Feeding behaviour was similar in both species and the methods of particle collection and ingestion are described. Individuals of T. hawaiensis, in which the feeding tentacles were removed, were observed collecting particles with the aid of branchiae. The multitentaculate species studied was more successful in collecting particles from greater foraging radii and at a faster rate than the bitentaculate species but the experimental design may have disfavoured the latter. Two-way ANOVA results showed that both bitentaculate and multitentaculate species significantly selected in favour of smaller particle sizes. Further studies about particle encounter, selection and ingestion are needed and may aid understanding of the phylogenetic relationships between the bitentaculate and multitentaculate cirratulids.
Geochemical and related studies have been made of near-surface sediments from the River Clyde estuary and adjoining areas, extending from Glasgow to the N, and W as far as the Holy Loch on the W coast of Scotland, UK. Multibeam echosounder, sidescan sonar and shallow seismic data, taken with core information, indicate that a shallow layer of modern sediment, often less than a metre thick, rests on earlier glacial and post-glacial sediments. The offshore Quaternary history can be aligned with onshore sequences, with the recognition of buried drumlins, settlement of muds from quieter water, probably behind an ice dam, and later tidal delta deposits. The geochemistry of contaminants within the cores also indicates shallow contaminated sediments, often resting on pristine pre-industrial deposits at depths less than 1m. The distribution of different contaminants with depth in the sediment, such as Pb (and Pb isotopes), organics and radionuclides, allow chronologies of contamination from different sources to be suggested. Dating was also attempted using microfossils, radiocarbon and 210Pb, but with limited success. Some of the spatial distribution of contaminants in the surface sediments can be related to grain-size variations. Contaminants are highest, both in absolute terms and in enrichment relative to the natural background, in the urban and inner estuary and in the Holy Loch, reflecting the concentration of industrial activity.
The Dietary Inflammatory Index (DII)TM, which was developed to characterize the inflammatory potential of a person’s diet, has been shown to be associated with inflammatory conditions such as cancer. The present study aimed to investigate the association between DII scores and colorectal adenoma (CRA), a pre-cancerous condition.
Responses to baseline dietary questionnaires were used calculate DII scores. In a cross-sectional study design, the association between DII scores and CRA prevalence was determined in men and women separately using logistic regression models.
Ten cancer screening centres across the USA.
Participants were those included in the screening arm of the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal, and Ovarian (PLCO) Cancer Screening Trial.
Among the 44 278 individuals included in these analyses, men with diets in the most inflammatory quartile of DII scores had higher odds of all types of CRA (advanced, non-advanced and multiple (>1)) compared with those with diets in the least inflammatory quartile of DII scores. In fully adjusted models, compared with those with DII scores in quartile 1 (least inflammatory), males with DII scores in quartile 3 (adjusted odds ratio (aOR)=1·28; 95 % CI 1·12, 1·47) and quartile 4 (aOR=1·41; 95 % CI 1·23, 1·62) were more likely to have prevalent distal CRA. Higher DII scores, representing a more inflammatory diet, also were weakly associated with a higher prevalence of CRA in women.
Implementing an anti-inflammatory diet may be an effective means of primary prevention of CRA, especially in men.
To investigate an outbreak of Burkholderia cepacia complex and describe the measures that revealed the source.
A 629-bed, tertiary-care, pediatric hospital in Houston, Texas.
Pediatric patients without cystic fibrosis (CF) hospitalized in the pediatric and cardiovascular intensive care units.
We investigated an outbreak of B. cepacia complex from February through July 2016. Isolates were evaluated for molecular relatedness with repetitive extragenic palindromic polymerase chain reaction (rep-PCR); specific species identification and genotyping were performed at an independent laboratory. The investigation included a detailed review of all cases, direct observation of clinical practices, and respiratory surveillance cultures. Environmental and product cultures were performed at an accredited reference environmental microbiology laboratory.
Overall, 18 respiratory tract cultures, 5 blood cultures, 4 urine cultures, and 3 stool cultures were positive in 24 patients. Among the 24 patients, 17 had symptomatic infections and 7 were colonized. The median age of the patients was 22.5 months (range, 2–148 months). Rep-PCR typing showed that 21 of 24 cases represented the same strain, which was identified as a novel species within the B. cepacia complex. Product cultures of liquid docusate were positive with an identical strain of B. cepacia complex. Local and state health departments, as well as the CDC and FDA, were notified, prompting a multistate investigation.
Our investigation revealed an outbreak of a unique strain of B. cepacia complex isolated in clinical specimens from non-CF pediatric patients and from liquid docusate. This resulted in a national alert and voluntary recall by the manufacturer.