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Impairments in decision-making processes are believed to play an important role in both substance use disorders and behavioral addictions. Clinical and pre-clinical experimental testing provide complimentary insights on the psychobiological mechanisms of decision-making. The IOWA Gambling Task (IGT) assesses decision-making under ambiguity and risk, in which individuals are faced with four card choices associated with varying monetary reinforcer/loss contingencies. The rat Gambling Task is a pre-clinical version using palatable reinforcers as wins and timeouts mimicking losses. However, studies with interspecies comparisons in these tasks are lacking, but important to facilitate translation of information that may help unravel the complex processes of decision-making and generate clinical advances.
This study explores decision-making strategies among humans and rats performing the IGT and rGT.
A total of 270 young human adults performed a computerized version of the IGT, and 72 adult outbread male Lister Hooded rats performed the rGT. Performance was assessed and explored by normative scoring approaches and subgroup formations based on individual choices.
Results showed that most humans and rats learned to favor the advantageous choices, but the overall level of performance differed considerably. Humans displayed both exploration and learning as the task progressed, while rats showed relatively consistent pronounced preferences for the advantageous choices throughout the task. Nevertheless, variability in individual choice preferences during end performance were evident in both species.
Results are discussed in relation to procedural differences impacting performance and potential to study different aspects of decision-making. This is a first attempt to provide formal evaluation of similarities and differences regarding decision-making processes in the IGT and rGT from an explorative perspective.
Higher milk intake has been associated with a lower stroke risk, but not with risk of CHD. Residual confounding or reverse causation cannot be excluded. Therefore, we estimated the causal association of milk consumption with stroke and CHD risk through instrumental variable (IV) and gene-outcome analyses. IV analysis included 29 328 participants (4611 stroke; 9828 CHD) of the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC)-CVD (eight European countries) and European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition-Netherlands (EPIC-NL) case-cohort studies. rs4988235, a lactase persistence (LP) SNP which enables digestion of lactose in adulthood was used as genetic instrument. Intake of milk was first regressed on rs4988235 in a linear regression model. Next, associations of genetically predicted milk consumption with stroke and CHD were estimated using Prentice-weighted Cox regression. Gene-outcome analysis included 777 024 participants (50 804 cases) from MEGASTROKE (including EPIC-CVD), UK Biobank and EPIC-NL for stroke, and 483 966 participants (61 612 cases) from CARDIoGRAM, UK Biobank, EPIC-CVD and EPIC-NL for CHD. In IV analyses, each additional LP allele was associated with a higher intake of milk in EPIC-CVD (β = 13·7 g/d; 95 % CI 8·4, 19·1) and EPIC-NL (36·8 g/d; 95 % CI 20·0, 53·5). Genetically predicted milk intake was not associated with stroke (HR per 25 g/d 1·05; 95 % CI 0·94, 1·16) or CHD (1·02; 95 % CI 0·96, 1·08). In gene-outcome analyses, there was no association of rs4988235 with risk of stroke (OR 1·02; 95 % CI 0·99, 1·05) or CHD (OR 0·99; 95 % CI 0·95, 1·03). Current Mendelian randomisation analysis does not provide evidence for a causal inverse relationship between milk consumption and stroke or CHD risk.
Climate warming is occurring most rapidly in the Arctic, which is both a sentinel and a driver of further global change. Ecosystems and human societies are already affected by warming. Permafrost thaws and species are on the move, bringing pathogens and vectors to virgin areas. During a five-year project, the CLINF – a Nordic Center of Excellence, funded by the Nordic Council of Ministers, has worked with the One Health concept, integrating environmental data with human and animal disease data in predictive models and creating maps of dynamic processes affecting the spread of infectious diseases. It is shown that tularemia outbreaks can be predicted even at a regional level with a manageable level of uncertainty. To decrease uncertainty, rapid development of new and harmonised technologies and databases is needed from currently highly heterogeneous data sources. A major source of uncertainty for the future of contaminants and infectious diseases in the Arctic, however, is associated with which paths the majority of the globe chooses to follow in the future. Diplomacy is one of the most powerful tools Arctic nations have to influence these choices of other nations, supported by Arctic science and One Health approaches that recognise the interconnection between people, animals, plants and their shared environment at the local, regional, national and global levels as essential for achieving a sustainable development for both the Arctic and the globe.
We re-analyzed OJ287 in 120 Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA, MOJAVE) observations (at 15 GHz) covering the time span between Apr. 1995 and Apr. 2017. We find that the radio jet motion over the sky is consistent with a precessing and nutating jet source. The variability of the radio flux-density can be explained by Doppler beaming due to a change in the viewing angle. We suggest that part of the optical emission is due to synchrotron emission related to the jet radiation. We find a strikingly similar scaling for the timescales for precession and nutation as indicated for SS433 with a factor of roughly 50 times longer in OJ287.
Attentional impairment is a core cognitive feature of major depressive disorder (MDD) and bipolar disorder (BD). However, little is known of the characteristics of response time (RT) distributions from attentional tasks. This is crucial to furthering our understanding of the profile and extent of cognitive intra-individual variability (IIV) in mood disorders.
A computerized sustained attention task was administered to 138 healthy controls and 158 patients with a mood disorder: 86 euthymic BD, 33 depressed BD and 39 medication-free MDD patients. Measures of IIV, including individual standard deviation (iSD) and coefficient of variation (CoV), were derived for each participant. Ex-Gaussian (and Vincentile) analyses were used to characterize the RT distributions into three components: mu and sigma (mean and standard deviation of the Gaussian portion of the distribution) and tau (the ‘slow tail’ of the distribution).
Compared with healthy controls, iSD was increased significantly in all patient samples. Due to minimal changes in average RT, CoV was only increased significantly in BD depressed patients. Ex-Gaussian modelling indicated a significant increase in tau in euthymic BD [Cohen's d = 0.39, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.09–0.69, p = 0.011], and both sigma (d = 0.57, 95% CI 0.07–1.05, p = 0.025) and tau (d = 1.14, 95% CI 0.60–1.64, p < 0.0001) in depressed BD. The mu parameter did not differ from controls.
Increased cognitive variability may be a core feature of mood disorders. This is the first demonstration of differences in attentional RT distribution parameters between MDD and BD, and BD depression and euthymia. These data highlight the utility of applying measures of IIV to characterize neurocognitive variability and the great potential for future application.
To evaluate the consumption of added fats and oils across the European centres and countries participating in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC).
Design and setting:
24-Hour dietary recalls were collected by means of standardised computer-guided interviews in 27 redefined EPIC centres across 10 European countries.
From an initial number of 36 900 subjects, single dietary recalls from 22 924 women and 13 031 men in the age range of 35–74 years were included.
Mean daily intake of added fats and oils varied between 16.2 g (Varese, Italy) and 41.1 g (Malmö, Sweden) in women and between 24.7 g (Ragusa, Italy) and 66.0 g (Potsdam, Germany) in men. Total mean lipid intake by consumption of added fats and oils, including those used for sauce preparation, ranged between 18.3 (Norway) and 37.2 g day−1 (Greece) in women and 28.4 (Heidelberg, Germany) and 51.2 g day−1 (Greece) in men. The Mediterranean EPIC centres with high olive oil consumption combined with low animal fat intake contrasted with the central and northern European centres where fewer vegetable oils, more animal fats and a high proportion of margarine were consumed. The consumption of added fats and oils of animal origin was highest in the German EPIC centres, followed by the French. The contribution of added fats and oils to total energy intake ranged from 8% in Norway to 22% in Greece.
The results demonstrate a high variation in dietary intake of added fats and oils in EPIC, providing a good opportunity to elucidate the role of dietary fats in cancer aetiology.
To describe and compare the consumption of dairy products in cohorts included in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC).
Data from single 24-hour dietary recall interviews collected through a highly standardised computer-based program (EPIC-SOFT) in 27 redefined centres in 10 European countries between 1995 and 2000. From a total random sample of 36 900, 22 924 women and 13 031 men were selected after exclusion of subjects under 35 and over 74 years of age.
A high total consumption of dairy products was reported in most of the centres in Spain and in the UK cohort sampled from the general population, as well as in the Dutch, Swedish and Danish centres. A somewhat low consumption was reported in the Greek centre and in some of the Italian centres (Ragusa and Turin). In all centres and for both sexes, milk constituted the dairy sub-group with the largest proportion (in grams) of total dairy consumption, followed by yoghurt and other fermented milk products, and cheese. Still, there was a wide range in the contributions of the different dairy sub-groups between centres. The Spanish and Nordic centres generally reported a high consumption of milk, the Swedish and Dutch centres reported a high consumption of yoghurt and other fermented milk products, whereas the highest consumption of cheese was reported in the French centres.
The results demonstrate both quantitative and qualitative disparities in dairy product consumption among the EPIC centres. This offers a sound starting point for analyses of associations between dairy intake and chronic diseases such as cancer.
Background and objectives: This randomized controlled trial was designed to evaluate, first, whether intra- or postoperative music therapy could influence stress and immune response during and after general anaesthesia and second, if there was a different response between patients exposed to music intra- or postoperatively.
Method: Seventy-five patients undergoing open hernia repair as day care surgery were randomly allocated to three groups: intraoperative music, postoperative music and silence (control group). Anaesthesia and postoperative analgesia were standardized and the same surgeon performed all the operations. Stress response was assessed during and after surgery by determining the plasma cortisol and blood glucose levels. Immune function was evaluated by studying immunoglobulin A (IgA) levels. Patients' postoperative pain, anxiety, blood pressure (BP), heart rate (HR) and oxygen saturation were also studied as stress markers.
Results: There was a significantly greater decrease in the level of cortisol in the postoperative music group vs. the control group (206 and 72 mmol L−1 decreases, respectively) after 2 h in the post anaesthesia care unit. The postoperative music group had less anxiety and pain and required less morphine after 1 h compared with the control group. In the postoperative music group the total requirement of morphine was significantly lower than in the control group. The intraoperative music group reported less pain after 1 h in the post anaesthesia care unit. There was no difference in IgA, blood glucose, BP, HR and oxygen saturation between the groups.
Conclusion: This study suggests that intraoperative music may decrease postoperative pain, and that postoperative music therapy may reduce anxiety, pain and morphine consumption.
Background. Conflicting results have been reported in previous association studies of the serotonin transporter promoter repeat length polymorphism (5-HTTLPR), seasonal affective disorder (SAD) and seasonality (seasonal variations in mood and behaviour). The aim of this study was to test for association in new case–control and population-based materials, and to perform a combined analysis of all published studies of 5-HTTLPR and SAD.
Method. One hundred and forty-seven new SAD cases and 115 controls were genotyped for 5-HTTLPR and in total 464 patients and 414 controls were included in the pooled analysis. In addition, 226 individuals selected for unusually high or low seasonality scores from a population based material and 46 patients with non-seasonal depression were analysed. Different genetic models were tested and seasonality was analysed both as a qualitative (high v. low) and as a quantitative trait in the different sample sets.
Results. No association between 5-HTTLPR and SAD was found in the new case–control material, in the combined analysis of all samples, or when only including 316 patients with controls (N=298) selected for low seasonality. A difference was detected between the population based high and low seasonality groups, when assuming a recessive effect of the short allele (20% and 10% short allele homozygotes, respectively, OR (95% CI): 2·24 (1·03–4·91)). Quantitative analysis of seasonality revealed no association with 5-HTTLPR in any sample set.
Conclusions. These results do not suggest a major role of the short variant of 5-HTTLPR in susceptibility to SAD, but provide modest evidence for an effect on seasonality.
Low-loped p-type silicon carbide buffer layers are grown by chemical vapor deposition on conducting and semi-insulating substrates. Capacitance-voltage and electrical admittance techniques are developed for accurate non-destructive characterization. The electrical admittance techniques suggested are capable of measuring the resistivity in a very wide range, up to 7 orders of magnitude. MESFET devices using thick buffer layers on conducting substrates are reported with Ft=8.4 GHz and Fmax=32 GHz.
The current status of the stream-living insects and gastropods of the island of Gran Canaria in the Atlantic Canary Islands is documented. Data from semiquantitative kick samples taken in 11 streams are supplemented by non-standardized collecting in the same and ten additional streams. The kick samples included some 9,000 specimens of 98 taxa, and in total 123 taxa were recorded from the studied streams in 1994 and 1995. The stream fauna was dominated by Diptera with some 80 taxa, followed by Coleoptera with 37 species known from the island. The kick samples yielded 11-36 species per stream and visit, whereas up to 48 species were scored when all collecting methods were included. Local diversity given as Fisher's α ranged from 3.2 to 10.3. Clustering showed only weak spatial patterns and resulted in much higher similarities among localities when based on the semiquantitative samples than when based on presence/absence including records from all collecting methods. Species distributions among localities were not significantly nested. The faunal similarity with the adjacent island of Tenerife is striking. Six of the Tenerife species are seemingly absent from Gran Canaria, whereas Gran Canaria has 13 species not found in Tenerife. Most of the 22 aquatic insect species in Gran Canaria only known from older records, prefer lentic habitats not included in our study. All except one of the five species endemic to Gran Canaria are considered extinct or on the edge of extinction. Increased future extinction rates are predicted as a response of the extreme habitat loss, with only three permanent streams known on the island today.
Blazar OJ 287 is one of the best observed extragalactic objects. It's historical light curve goes back to 1890′s. Based on the historical behaviour Sillanpää et al. (1988) showed that OJ 287 displays large periodic outbursts, with a period of 11.7 years. We have monitored OJ 287 intensively for two years, during the OJ-94 project. This project was created for monitoring OJ 287 during its predicted new outburst in 1994. In the data archive we have over 7000 observations on OJ 287, in the radio, infrared and optical bands. This data archive contains the best ever obtained light curves for any extragalactic object. The optical light curve shows continuous variability down to time scales of tens of minutes. The variability observed in OJ 287 can be broken down to (at least) four different categories:
Eight surface-living insect species, two gyrinid beetles and six heteropteran bugs, were studied in 27 pools in a Tenerife
stream. Gyrinus urinator was on average the most abundant species whereas Velia lindbergi was the most widely distributed one. Gyrinid abundance (numbers per pool), but not density (numbers per square metre), was positively associated with pool size and depth. In contrast, the densities of the bugs Velia lindbergi and Hydrometra stagnorum decreased with pool size. Both the number of species and individuals increased with pool area. Widely distributed species were represented with higher average densities than species with a more restricted distribution. Contrary to theory, there was a positive relationship between mean adult body size and density within the guild.
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