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This chapter explains why the purchase funnel – sometimes known as the “consumer decision journey” or the “consumer buying path” – is a valuable analytical framework for marketing experts engaged to provide an external expert opinion to inform the finder of fact in litigation matters. The value inherent in the purchase funnel framework is that, unlike most economic analyses or analyses grounded in the strategy literature, the purchase funnel does not treat consumers as making a single discrete decision. Instead, it recognizes that for each decision that any one consumer makes, the consumer must pass through a series of distinct hurdles progressing from awareness to consideration, conversion, and post-purchase. Laying out these steps can be helpful in a large variety of litigation contexts.
In sub-Saharan Africa, there are no validated screening tools for delirium in older adults, despite the known vulnerability of older people to delirium and the associated adverse outcomes. This study aimed to assess the effectiveness of a brief smartphone-based assessment of arousal and attention (DelApp) in the identification of delirium amongst older adults admitted to the medical department of a tertiary referral hospital in Northern Tanzania.
Consecutive admissions were screened using the DelApp during a larger study of delirium prevalence and risk factors. All participants subsequently underwent detailed clinical assessment for delirium by a research doctor. Delirium and dementia were identified against DSM-5 criteria by consensus.
Complete data for 66 individuals were collected of whom 15 (22.7%) had delirium, 24.5% had dementia without delirium, and 10.6% had delirium superimposed on dementia. Sensitivity and specificity of the DelApp for delirium were 0.87 and 0.62, respectively (AUROC 0.77) and 0.88 and 0.73 (AUROC 0.85) for major cognitive impairment (dementia and delirium combined). Lower DelApp score was associated with age, significant visual impairment (<6/60 acuity), illness severity, reduced arousal and DSM-5 delirium on univariable analysis, but on multivariable logistic regression only arousal remained significant.
In this setting, the DelApp performed well in identifying delirium and major cognitive impairment but did not differentiate delirium and dementia. Performance is likely to have been affected by confounders including uncorrected visual impairment and reduced level of arousal without delirium. Negative predictive value was nevertheless high, indicating excellent ‘rule out’ value in this setting.
Studies evaluating depression's role in lung cancer risk revealed contradictory findings, partly because of the small number of cases, short follow-up periods, and failure to account for key covariates including smoking exposure. We investigated the association of depressive symptoms with lung cancer risk in a large prospective cohort over 24 years while considering the role of smoking.
Women from the Nurses' Health Study completed measures of depressive symptoms, sociodemographics, and other factors including smoking in 1992 (N = 42 913). Depressive symptoms were also queried in 1996 and 2000, whereas regular antidepressant use and physician-diagnosed depression were collected starting in 1996. Multivariable Cox regression models estimated hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) of lung cancer risk until 2016.
We identified 1009 cases of lung cancer. Women with the highest v. lowest level of depressive symptoms had an increased lung cancer risk (HRsociodemographics-adjusted = 1.62, 95% CI 1.34–1.95; HRfully-adjusted = 1.25, 95% CI 1.04–1.51). In a test of mediation, lifetime pack-years of smoking accounted for 38% of the overall association between depressive symptoms and disease risk. When stratifying by smoking status, the elevated risk was evident among former smokers but not current or never smokers; however, the interaction term suggested no meaningful differences across groups (p = 0.29). Results were similar or stronger when considering time-updated depression status (using depressive symptoms, physician diagnosis, and regular antidepressant use) and chronicity of depressive symptoms.
These findings suggest that greater depressive symptoms may contribute to lung cancer incidence, directly and indirectly via smoking habits, which accounted for over a third of the association.
In this study, in situ and erratic samples from George V Coast (East Antarctica) and southern Eyre Peninsula (Australia) have been used to characterize the microstructural, pressure–temperature and geochronological record of upper amphibolite and granulite facies polymetamorphism in the Mawson Continent to provide insight into the spatial distribution of reworking and the subice geology of the Mawson Continent. Monazite U-Pb data shows that in situ samples from the George V Coast record exclusively 2450–2400 Ma ages, whereas most erratic samples from glacial moraines at Cape Denison and the Red Banks Charnockite record only 1720–1690 Ma ages, consistent with known ages of the Sleaford and Kimban events, respectively. Phase equilibria forward modelling reveals considerable overlap of the thermal character of these two events. Samples with unimodal 1720–1690 Ma Kimban ages reflect either formation after the Sleaford event or complete metamorphic overprinting. Rocks recording only 2450–2400 Ma ages were unaffected by the younger Kimban event, perhaps as a result of unreactive rock compositions inherited from the Sleaford event. Our results suggest the subice geology of the Mawson Continent is a pre-Sleaford-aged terrane with a cover sequence reworked during the Kimban event.
Whether monozygotic (MZ) and dizygotic (DZ) twins differ from each other in a variety of phenotypes is important for genetic twin modeling and for inferences made from twin studies in general. We analyzed whether there were differences in individual, maternal and paternal education between MZ and DZ twins in a large pooled dataset. Information was gathered on individual education for 218,362 adult twins from 27 twin cohorts (53% females; 39% MZ twins), and on maternal and paternal education for 147,315 and 143,056 twins respectively, from 28 twin cohorts (52% females; 38% MZ twins). Together, we had information on individual or parental education from 42 twin cohorts representing 19 countries. The original education classifications were transformed to education years and analyzed using linear regression models. Overall, MZ males had 0.26 (95% CI [0.21, 0.31]) years and MZ females 0.17 (95% CI [0.12, 0.21]) years longer education than DZ twins. The zygosity difference became smaller in more recent birth cohorts for both males and females. Parental education was somewhat longer for fathers of DZ twins in cohorts born in 1990–1999 (0.16 years, 95% CI [0.08, 0.25]) and 2000 or later (0.11 years, 95% CI [0.00, 0.22]), compared with fathers of MZ twins. The results show that the years of both individual and parental education are largely similar in MZ and DZ twins. We suggest that the socio-economic differences between MZ and DZ twins are so small that inferences based upon genetic modeling of twin data are not affected.
A trend toward greater body size in dizygotic (DZ) than in monozygotic (MZ) twins has been suggested by some but not all studies, and this difference may also vary by age. We analyzed zygosity differences in mean values and variances of height and body mass index (BMI) among male and female twins from infancy to old age. Data were derived from an international database of 54 twin cohorts participating in the COllaborative project of Development of Anthropometrical measures in Twins (CODATwins), and included 842,951 height and BMI measurements from twins aged 1 to 102 years. The results showed that DZ twins were consistently taller than MZ twins, with differences of up to 2.0 cm in childhood and adolescence and up to 0.9 cm in adulthood. Similarly, a greater mean BMI of up to 0.3 kg/m2 in childhood and adolescence and up to 0.2 kg/m2 in adulthood was observed in DZ twins, although the pattern was less consistent. DZ twins presented up to 1.7% greater height and 1.9% greater BMI than MZ twins; these percentage differences were largest in middle and late childhood and decreased with age in both sexes. The variance of height was similar in MZ and DZ twins at most ages. In contrast, the variance of BMI was significantly higher in DZ than in MZ twins, particularly in childhood. In conclusion, DZ twins were generally taller and had greater BMI than MZ twins, but the differences decreased with age in both sexes.
For over 100 years, the genetics of human anthropometric traits has attracted scientific interest. In particular, height and body mass index (BMI, calculated as kg/m2) have been under intensive genetic research. However, it is still largely unknown whether and how heritability estimates vary between human populations. Opportunities to address this question have increased recently because of the establishment of many new twin cohorts and the increasing accumulation of data in established twin cohorts. We started a new research project to analyze systematically (1) the variation of heritability estimates of height, BMI and their trajectories over the life course between birth cohorts, ethnicities and countries, and (2) to study the effects of birth-related factors, education and smoking on these anthropometric traits and whether these effects vary between twin cohorts. We identified 67 twin projects, including both monozygotic (MZ) and dizygotic (DZ) twins, using various sources. We asked for individual level data on height and weight including repeated measurements, birth related traits, background variables, education and smoking. By the end of 2014, 48 projects participated. Together, we have 893,458 height and weight measures (52% females) from 434,723 twin individuals, including 201,192 complete twin pairs (40% monozygotic, 40% same-sex dizygotic and 20% opposite-sex dizygotic) representing 22 countries. This project demonstrates that large-scale international twin studies are feasible and can promote the use of existing data for novel research purposes.