To save content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about saving content to .
To save content items to your Kindle, first ensure email@example.com
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about saving to your Kindle.
Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
Effective stakeholder engagement increases research relevance and utility. Though published principles of community-based participatory research and patient-centered outcomes research offer guidance, few resources offer effective techniques to engage stakeholders and translate their engagement into improvements in research process and outcomes. The Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (Indiana CTSI) is home to Research Jam (RJ), an interdisciplinary team of researchers, project management professionals, and design experts, that employs human-centered design (HCD) to engage stakeholders in the research process. Establishing HCD services at the Indiana CTSI has allowed for accessible and innovative stakeholder-engaged research. RJ offers services for stakeholder-informed study design, measurement, implementation, and dissemination. RJ’s services are in demand to address research barriers pertaining to a diverse array of health topics and stakeholder groups. As a result, the RJ team has grown significantly with both institutional and extramural support. Researchers involved in RJ projects report that working with RJ helped them learn how to better engage with stakeholders in research and changed the way they approach working with stakeholders. RJ can serve as a potential model for effectively engaging stakeholders through HCD to improve translational research.
The COVID-19 pandemic has led to an increased psychological strain on public mental health and may impact behavioural, mental, and physical health, presumably with effects on patients with severe mental disorders.
This study examines pandemic-related physical and mental health and (compensatory) behavioural changes, in patients with BD as compared to healthy control individuals.
Physical and mental health and self-reported changes in daily structure and behaviour due to pandemic were assessed using a self-constructed questionnaire and the brief symptom inventory (BSI) from outpatient clinics in Germany, Austria, and Denmark in individuals with BD and a healthy control group.
The present study included 118 individuals with BD and 215 healthy controls. Individuals with BD reported statistically significant higher physical risk burden, increased weight gain, more physical comorbidities, and a decrease in physical activity and they further reported higher rate of COVID-19 testing, had more worries concerning health and experienced more anxiety but less social distancing.
The COVID-19 pandemic seems to have a greater impact on physical health in individuals with BD than in healthy controls. Individuals with BD appear to be having more difficulties compensating their behaviour due to the pandemic which could amplify the effect of risk factors associated with poorer physical health. This highlights the necessity for optimising and targeting the overall treatment of both mental and physical health in patients with BD during periods with far-reaching changes such as COVID-19 pandemic.
Stunting (<−2 SD of length- or height-for-age on WHO growth curves) is the most used predictor of child neurodevelopmental (ND) risk. Occipitofrontal head circumference (OFC) may be an equally feasible, but more direct and robust predictor. We explored association of the two measurements with ND outcome, separately and combined, and examined if cutoffs are more efficacious than continuous measures in predicting ND risk. Infants and young children in rural Guatemala (n = 642; age range = 0.1–35.9 months) were enrolled in a prospective natural history study, and their ND was tested using the Mullen Scales of Early Learning (MSEL) longitudinally. Length- or height-for-age and OFC-for-age were calculated. We performed age-adjusted multivariable regression analyses to explore the association between 1) length or height and ND, 2) OFC and ND, and 3) both length or height and OFC combined, with ND; concurrently, predictively, and longitudinally, as continuous variables and using WHO z-score cutoffs. Continuous length- or height-for-age and OFC z-scores were more strongly associated with MSEL than the traditional -2 SD WHO cutoff. The combination of height-for-age z-score and OFC z-score was consistently, strongly associated with the MSEL Early Learning Composite concurrently (p-values 0.0004–0.11), predictively (p-value 0.001–0.07), with the exception of the 18–24 months age group which had very few records, and in the longitudinal model (p-value <0.0001–0.004). The combination of continuous length- or height-for-age and OFC shows additional utility in estimating ND risk in infants and young children. Measurement of OFC may improve precision of prediction of ND risk in infants and young children.
The Romance counting system is numerical – with residues of earlier systems whereby each commodity had its own unit of quantification – and decimal. Numeral formations beyond ‘10’ are compounds, combining two or more numerals that are in an arithmetical relation, typically that of addition and multiplication. Formal variation across the (standard) Romance languages and dialects and across historical stages involves the relative sequence of the composing elements, absence or presence of connectors, their synthetic vs. analytic nature, and the degree of grammatical marking. A number of ‘deviant’ numeral formations raise the question of borrowing vs independent development, such as vigesimals (featuring a base ‘20’ instead ‘10’) in certain Romance varieties and the teen and decad formations in Romanian. The other types of numeral in Romance, which derive from the unmarked and consistent cardinals, feature a significantly higher degree of formal complexity and variation involving Latin formants and tend toward analyticity. While Latin features prominently in the Romance counting system as a source of numeral formations and suffixes, it is only in Romance that the inherited decimal system reached its full potential, illustrating its increasing prominence, reflected not only in numerals, but also in language acquisition, sign language, and post-Revolution measuring systems.
This essay charts the rise of serial fiction from sensational to sentimental series. Many of these texts were written by authors who were once well known but who are now largely forgotten. Or scholars may be familiar with one or two titles from these writers’ whole corpus, as may be the case for E. D. E. N. Southworth’s fifty-two novels. Publishers such as Peterson’s and Street & Smith profited from these novels, as did the authors who engaged their readers with popular, if sometimes convoluted, plots. Drawing these readers to serials was the reliability of their narrative repetitions and excitement of their psychological dramas over how to deal with transitions in US culture.
To quantify perceptions of tap water among low-income mothers with young children residing in Michigan and examine associations between perceptions of tap water, mothers’ and young children’s beverage intake, and mothers’ infant feeding practices.
Medicaid-insured individuals who had given birth at a large Midwestern US hospital between fall 2016 and fall 2020 were invited by email to complete a survey in winter 2020 (N 3881); 15·6 % (N 606) completed eligibility screening, 550 (90·8 %) were eligible to participate, and 500 (90·9 %) provided valid survey data regarding perceptions of tap water, self and child beverage intake, and infant feeding practices.
Two-thirds (66·2 %) of mothers reported that their home tap water was safe to drink without a filter, while 21·6 % were unsure about the safety of their home tap water. Mothers’ perceptions of their home tap water were associated with their own tap and bottled water intake and their young children’s tap water and bottled water intake. Mothers with more negative perceptions of tap water in general, independent of their perceptions about their home tap water, consumed more bottled water and sugar-sweetened beverages, and their young children drank bottled water and fruit drinks more frequently. Few associations were observed between mothers’ perceptions of tap water and infant feeding practices.
Uncertainty about tap water safety and negative perceptions of tap water are common among low-income Michigan mothers. These beliefs may contribute to less healthful and more costly beverage intake among mothers and their young children.
Based on abundant topotype specimens from the Oil Creek Formation at the type locality in southern Oklahoma, Histiodella labiosa is described and revised. The morphological variation of the Pa, Pb, and M elements of this previously little-known species is also systematically documented and illustrated. The revised species definition, with formal designation of a lectotype and a new diagnosis supported by morphological comparison with its ancestral and descendent species, has enhanced its value for correlation of the lower Darriwilian. The inferred phylogeny of Histiodella that resulted from this study is based on both cladistic and morphological analyses. It supports the monophyletic grouping of Histiodella species and their evolutionary relationships. This has wide biostratigraphic implications because many Histiodella species are valuable for detailed global correlation of upper Dapingian to middle Darriwilian strata.
Microcephaly, an anthropometric marker of reduced brain volume and predictor of developmental disability, is rare in high-income countries. Recent reports show the prevalence of microcephaly to be much higher in lower resource settings. We calculated the prevalence of microcephaly in infants and young children (n = 642; age range = 0.1–35.9 months), examined trends in occipitofrontal circumference (OFC) growth in the year after birth and evaluated the relationship between OFC and performance on the Mullen Scales of Early Learning (MSEL) in rural Guatemala. Multivariable regression analyses adjusted for age were performed: (1) a model comparing concurrent MSEL performance and OFC at all visits per child, (2) concurrent OFC and MSEL performance by age group, and (3) OFC at enrollment and MSEL at final visit by age group. Prevalence of microcephaly ranged from 10.1% to 25.0%. OFC z-score decreased for most infants throughout the first year after birth. A significant positive association between continuous OFC measurement and MSEL score suggested that children with smaller OFC may do worse on ND tests conducted both concurrently and ∼1 year later. Results were variable when analyzed by OFC cutoff scores and stratified by 6-month age groups. OFC should be considered for inclusion in developmental screening assessments at the individual and population level, especially when performance-based testing is not feasible.
Response to lithium in patients with bipolar disorder is associated with clinical and transdiagnostic genetic factors. The predictive combination of these variables might help clinicians better predict which patients will respond to lithium treatment.
To use a combination of transdiagnostic genetic and clinical factors to predict lithium response in patients with bipolar disorder.
This study utilised genetic and clinical data (n = 1034) collected as part of the International Consortium on Lithium Genetics (ConLi+Gen) project. Polygenic risk scores (PRS) were computed for schizophrenia and major depressive disorder, and then combined with clinical variables using a cross-validated machine-learning regression approach. Unimodal, multimodal and genetically stratified models were trained and validated using ridge, elastic net and random forest regression on 692 patients with bipolar disorder from ten study sites using leave-site-out cross-validation. All models were then tested on an independent test set of 342 patients. The best performing models were then tested in a classification framework.
The best performing linear model explained 5.1% (P = 0.0001) of variance in lithium response and was composed of clinical variables, PRS variables and interaction terms between them. The best performing non-linear model used only clinical variables and explained 8.1% (P = 0.0001) of variance in lithium response. A priori genomic stratification improved non-linear model performance to 13.7% (P = 0.0001) and improved the binary classification of lithium response. This model stratified patients based on their meta-polygenic loadings for major depressive disorder and schizophrenia and was then trained using clinical data.
Using PRS to first stratify patients genetically and then train machine-learning models with clinical predictors led to large improvements in lithium response prediction. When used with other PRS and biological markers in the future this approach may help inform which patients are most likely to respond to lithium treatment.
Malnutrition and sarcopenia are prevalent in patients with head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). Pre-treatment sarcopenia and adverse oncological outcomes in this population are well described. The impact of myosteatosis and post-treatment sarcopenia is less well known. Patients with HNSCC (n = 125) undergoing chemoradiotherapy, radiotherapy alone and/or surgery were assessed for sarcopenia and myosteatosis, using cross-sectional computed tomography (CT) imaging at the third lumbar (L3) vertebra, at baseline and 3 months post-treatment. Outcomes were overall survival (OS) at 12 months and 5 years post-treatment. One hundred and one participants had a CT scan evaluable at one or two time points, of which sixty-seven (66 %) participants were sarcopenic on at least one time point. Reduced muscle attenuation affected 93 % (n = 92) pre-treatment compared with 97 % (n = 90) post-treatment. Five-year OS favoured those without post-treatment sarcopenia (hazard ratio, HR 0·37, 95 % CI 0·16, 0·88, P = 0·06) and those without both post-treatment myosteatosis and sarcopenia (HR 0·33, 95 % CI 0·13, 0·83, P = 0·06). Overall, rates of myosteatosis were high at both pre- and post-treatment time points. Post-treatment sarcopenia was associated with worse 5-year OS, as was post-treatment sarcopenia in those who had myosteatosis. Post-treatment sarcopenia should be evaluated as an independent risk factor for decreased long-term survival post-treatment containing radiotherapy (RT) for HNSCC.
The purpose of this study was to pilot safety and tolerability of a 1-week aerobic exercise program during the post-acute phase of concussion (14–25 days post-injury) by examining adherence, symptom response, and key functional outcomes (e.g., cognition, mood, sleep, postural stability, and neurocognitive performance) in young adults.
A randomized, non-blinded pilot clinical trial was performed to compare the effects of aerobic versus non-aerobic exercise (placebo) in concussion patients. The study enrolled three groups: 1) patients with concussion/mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) randomized to an aerobic exercise intervention performed daily for 1-week, 2) patients with concussion/mTBI randomized to a non-aerobic (stretching and calisthenics) exercise program performed daily for 1-week, and 3) non-injured, no intervention reference group.
Mixed-model analysis of variance results indicated a significant decrease in symptom severity scores from pre- to post-intervention (mean difference = −7.44, 95% CI [−12.37, −2.20]) for both concussion groups. However, the pre- to post-change was not different between groups. Secondary outcomes all showed improvements by post-intervention, but no differences in trajectory between the groups. By three months post-injury, all outcomes in the concussion groups were within ranges of the non-injured reference group.
Results from this study indicate that the feasibility and tolerability of administering aerobic exercise via stationary cycling in the post-acute time frame following post-concussion (14–25 days) period are tentatively favorable. Aerobic exercise does not appear to negatively impact recovery trajectories of neurobehavioral outcomes; however, tolerability may be poorer for patients with high symptom burden.
The ability for people to connect, learn, and communicate about science has been enhanced through the Internet, specifically through social media platforms. Facebook and Twitter are well-studied, while Instagram is understudied. This Element provides insight into using Instagram as a science education platform by pioneering a set of calculated metrics, using a paleontology-focused account as a case study. Framed by the theory of affinity spaces, the authors conducted year-long analyses of 455 posts and 139 stories that were created as part of an informal science learning project. They found that team activity updates and posts outside of their other categories perform better than their defined categories. For Instagram stories, the data show that fewer slides per story hold viewers' attention longer, and stories using the poll tool garnered the most interaction. This Element provides a baseline to assess the success of Instagram content for science communicators and natural science institutions.
We summarize some of the past year's most important findings within climate change-related research. New research has improved our understanding about the remaining options to achieve the Paris Agreement goals, through overcoming political barriers to carbon pricing, taking into account non-CO2 factors, a well-designed implementation of demand-side and nature-based solutions, resilience building of ecosystems and the recognition that climate change mitigation costs can be justified by benefits to the health of humans and nature alone. We consider new insights about what to expect if we fail to include a new dimension of fire extremes and the prospect of cascading climate tipping elements.
A synthesis is made of 10 topics within climate research, where there have been significant advances since January 2020. The insights are based on input from an international open call with broad disciplinary scope. Findings include: (1) the options to still keep global warming below 1.5 °C; (2) the impact of non-CO2 factors in global warming; (3) a new dimension of fire extremes forced by climate change; (4) the increasing pressure on interconnected climate tipping elements; (5) the dimensions of climate justice; (6) political challenges impeding the effectiveness of carbon pricing; (7) demand-side solutions as vehicles of climate mitigation; (8) the potentials and caveats of nature-based solutions; (9) how building resilience of marine ecosystems is possible; and (10) that the costs of climate change mitigation policies can be more than justified by the benefits to the health of humans and nature.
Social media summary
How do we limit global warming to 1.5 °C and why is it crucial? See highlights of latest climate science.
It is under debate how preferential perfusion of the brain (brain-sparing) in fetal growth restriction (FGR) relates to long-term neurodevelopmental outcome. Epigenetic modification of neurotrophic genes by altered fetal oxygenation may be involved. To explore this theory, we performed a follow-up study of 21 FGR children, in whom we prospectively measured the prenatal cerebroplacental ratio (CPR) with Doppler sonography. At 4 years of age, we tested their neurodevelopmental outcome using the Wechsler Preschool and Primary Scale of Intelligence, the Child Behavior Checklist, and the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function. In addition, we collected their buccal DNA to determine the methylation status at predefined genetic regions within the genes hypoxia-inducible factor-1 alpha (HIF1A), vascular endothelial growth factor A (VEGFA), erythropoietin (EPO), EPO-receptor (EPOR), brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), and neurotrophic tyrosine kinase, receptor, type 2 (NTRK2) by pyrosequencing. We found that FGR children with fetal brain-sparing (CPR <1, n = 8) demonstrated a trend (0.05 < p < 0.1) toward hypermethylation of HIF1A and VEGFA at their hypoxia-response element (HRE) compared with FGR children without fetal brain-sparing. Moreover, in cases with fetal brain-sparing, we observed statistically significant hypermethylation at a binding site for cyclic adenosine monophophate response element binding protein (CREB) of BDNF promoter exon 4 and hypomethylation at an HRE located within the NTRK2 promoter (both p <0.05). Hypermethylation of VEGFA was associated with a poorer Performance Intelligence Quotient, while hypermethylation of BDNF was associated with better inhibitory self-control (both p <0.05). These results led us to formulate the hypothesis that early oxygen-dependent epigenetic alterations due to hemodynamic alterations in FGR may be associated with altered neurodevelopmental outcome in later life. We recommend further studies to test this hypothesis.
COVID-19 altered research in Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) hubs in an unprecedented manner, leading to adjustments for COVID-19 research.
CTSA members volunteered to conduct a review on the impact of CTSA network on COVID-19 pandemic with the assistance from NIH survey team in October 2020. The survey questions included the involvement of CTSAs in decision-making concerning the prioritization of COVID-19 studies. Descriptive and statistical analyses were conducted to analyze the survey data.
60 of the 64 CTSAs completed the survey. Most CTSAs lacked preparedness but promptly responded to the pandemic. Early disruption of research triggered, enhanced CTSA engagement, creation of dedicated research areas and triage for prioritization of COVID-19 studies. CTSAs involvement in decision-making were 16.75 times more likely to create dedicated diagnostic laboratories (95% confidence interval [CI] = 2.17–129.39; P < 0.01). Likewise, institutions with internal funding were 3.88 times more likely to establish COVID-19 dedicated research (95% CI = 1.12–13.40; P < 0.05). CTSAs were instrumental in securing funds and facilitating establishment of laboratory/clinical spaces for COVID-19 research. Workflow was modified to support contracting and IRB review at most institutions with CTSAs. To mitigate chaos generated by competing clinical trials, central feasibility committees were often formed for orderly review/prioritization.
The lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic emphasize the pivotal role of CTSAs in prioritizing studies and establishing the necessary research infrastructure, and the importance of prompt and flexible research leadership with decision-making capacity to manage future pandemics.
The National Neuropsychology Network (NNN) is a multicenter clinical research initiative funded by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH; R01 MH118514) to facilitate neuropsychology’s transition to contemporary psychometric assessment methods with resultant improvement in test validation and assessment efficiency.
The NNN includes four clinical research sites (Emory University; Medical College of Wisconsin; University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA); University of Florida) and Pearson Clinical Assessment. Pearson Q-interactive (Q-i) is used for data capture for Pearson published tests; web-based data capture tools programmed by UCLA, which serves as the Coordinating Center, are employed for remaining measures.
NNN is acquiring item-level data from 500–10,000 patients across 47 widely used Neuropsychology (NP) tests and sharing these data via the NIMH Data Archive. Modern psychometric methods (e.g., item response theory) will specify the constructs measured by different tests and determine their positive/negative predictive power regarding diagnostic outcomes and relationships to other clinical, historical, and demographic factors. The Structured History Protocol for NP (SHiP-NP) helps standardize acquisition of relevant history and self-report data.
NNN is a proof-of-principle collaboration: by addressing logistical challenges, NNN aims to engage other clinics to create a national and ultimately an international network. The mature NNN will provide mechanisms for data aggregation enabling shared analysis and collaborative research. NNN promises ultimately to enable robust diagnostic inferences about neuropsychological test patterns and to promote the validation of novel adaptive assessment strategies that will be more efficient, more precise, and more sensitive to clinical contexts and individual/cultural differences.
Aggressive behaviour is a prevalent and harmful phenomenon in patients with borderline personality disorder (BPD). However, no short-term, low-cost programme exists that specifically focuses on aggression.
Attuning therapy modules to pathogenetic mechanisms that underlie reactive aggression in BPD, we composed a 6 week mechanism-based anti-aggression psychotherapy (MAAP) approach for the group setting, which we tested against a non-specific supportive psychotherapy (NSSP).
A cluster-randomised two-arm parallel-group phase II trial of N = 59 patients with BPD and overt aggressive behaviour was performed (German Registry for Clinical Trials, DRKS00009445). The primary outcome was the externally directed overt aggression score of the Modified Overt Aggression Scale (M-OAS) post-treatment (adjusted for pre-treatment overt aggression). Secondary outcomes were M-OAS irritability, M-OAS response rate and ecological momentary assessment of anger post-treatment and at 6 month follow-up, as well as M-OAS overt aggression score at follow-up.
Although no significant difference in M-OAS overt aggression between treatments was found post-treatment (adjusted difference in mean 3.49 (95% CI −5.32 to 12.31, P = 0.22), the MAAP group showed a clinically relevant decrease in aggressive behaviour of 65% on average (versus 33% in the NSSP group), with particularly strong improvement among those with the highest baseline aggression. Most notably, significant differences in reduction in overt aggression between MAAP and NSSP were found at follow-up.
Patients with BPD and aggressive behaviour benefited from a short group psychotherapy, with improvements particularly visible at 6 month follow-up. Further studies are required to show whether these effects are specific to MAAP.
In Germany, sheep are the main source of human Q fever epidemics, but data on Coxiella burnetii (C. burnetii) infections and related risk factors in the German sheep population remain scarce. In this cross-sectional study, a standardised interview was conducted across 71 exclusively sheep as well as mixed (sheep and goat) farms to identify animal and herd level risk factors associated with the detection of C. burnetii antibodies or pathogen-specific gene fragments via univariable and multivariable logistic regression analysis. Serum samples and genital swabs from adult males and females of 3367 small ruminants from 71 farms were collected and analysed using ELISA and qPCR, respectively. On animal level, univariable analysis identified young animals (<2 years of age; odds ratio (OR) 0.33; 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.13–0.83) to reduce the risk for seropositivity significantly (p < 0.05). The final multivariable logistic models identified lambing all year-round (OR 3.46/3.65; 95% CI 0.80–15.06/0.41–32.06) and purchases of sheep and goats (OR 13.61/22.99; 95% CI 2.86–64.64/2.21–239.42) as risk factors on herd level for C. burnetii infection detected via ELISA and qPCR, respectively.
How does the gender of a political leader affect policy compliance of the public during a public health crisis? State and national leaders have taken a variety of policy measures to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, with varying levels of success. While many female leaders have been credited with containing the spread of COVID-19, often through implementing strict policy measures, there is little understanding of how individuals respond to public health policy recommendations made by female and male leaders. This article investigates whether citizens are more willing to comply with strict policy recommendations about a public health issue when those recommendations are made by a female leader rather than a male leader. Using a survey experiment with American citizens, we compare individuals’ willingness to comply with policy along three dimensions: social distancing, face covering, and contact tracing. Our findings show that a leader's gender has little impact on policy compliance in general during the pandemic. These findings carry important implications for successful crisis management as well as understanding how a crisis in a nonmasculine issue context influences the effectiveness of a leader's ability to implement measures to mitigate the crisis.