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Atherosclerotic changes can be measured as changes in common carotid intima media thickness (CIMT). It is hypothesised that repeated infection-associated inflammatory responses in childhood contribute to the atherosclerotic process. We set out to determine whether the frequency of infectious diseases in childhood is associated with CIMT in adolescence. The study is part of the Prevention and Incidence of Asthma and Mite Allergy (PIAMA) population-based birth cohort. At age 16 years, common CIMT was measured. We collected general practitioner (GP) diagnosed infections and prescribed antibiotics. Parent-reported infections were retrieved from annual questionnaires. Linear regression analysis assessed the association between number of infections during the first 4 years of life and common CIMT. Common CIMT measurement, GP and questionnaire data were available for 221 participants. No association was observed between the infection measures and CIMT. In a subgroup analysis, significant positive associations with CIMT were observed in participants with low parental education for 2–3 or ⩾7 GP diagnosed infections (+26.4 µm, 95% CI 0.4–52.4 and +26.8 µm, 95% CI 3.6–49.9, respectively) and ⩾3 antibiotic prescriptions (+35.5 µm, 95%CI 15.8–55.3). Overall, early childhood infections were not associated with common CIMT in adolescence. However, a higher number of childhood infections might contribute to the inflammatory process of atherosclerosis in subgroups with low education, this needs to be confirmed in future studies.
The SPICA mid- and far-infrared telescope will address fundamental issues in our understanding of star formation and ISM physics in galaxies. A particular hallmark of SPICA is the outstanding sensitivity enabled by the cold telescope, optimised detectors, and wide instantaneous bandwidth throughout the mid- and far-infrared. The spectroscopic, imaging, and polarimetric observations that SPICA will be able to collect will help in clarifying the complex physical mechanisms which underlie the baryon cycle of galaxies. In particular, (i) the access to a large suite of atomic and ionic fine-structure lines for large samples of galaxies will shed light on the origin of the observed spread in star-formation rates within and between galaxies, (ii) observations of HD rotational lines (out to ~10 Mpc) and fine structure lines such as [C ii] 158 μm (out to ~100 Mpc) will clarify the main reservoirs of interstellar matter in galaxies, including phases where CO does not emit, (iii) far-infrared spectroscopy of dust and ice features will address uncertainties in the mass and composition of dust in galaxies, and the contributions of supernovae to the interstellar dust budget will be quantified by photometry and monitoring of supernova remnants in nearby galaxies, (iv) observations of far-infrared cooling lines such as [O i] 63 μm from star-forming molecular clouds in our Galaxy will evaluate the importance of shocks to dissipate turbulent energy. The paper concludes with requirements for the telescope and instruments, and recommendations for the observing strategy.
Anxiety has been associated with new-onset cardiovascular disease (CVD),
but the quality of this relationship is unclear. Only if anxiety is a
causal, independent cardiovascular risk factor might it be a target for
To determine and examine the independent association and causality
between anxiety and incident CVD.
PubMed, EMBASE and PsycINFO databases were searched up to October 2013. A
review of Hill's criteria for causality and random effects meta-analysis
were conducted of prospective, population-based studies examining anxiety
and incident CVD in people free from CVD at baseline.
The meta-analysis comprised 37 papers (n = 1 565 699).
The follow-up ranged from 1 to 24 years. Anxiety was associated with a
52% increased incidence of CVD (hazard ratio = 1.52, 95% CI 1.36–1.71).
The risk seemed independent of traditional risk factors and depression.
The evaluation of Hill's criteria largely argued in favour of
Anxiety may be of interest for CVD prevention. Future research should
examine biological and behavioural underpinnings of the association in
order to identify targets for intervention.
Early results from the SAGE-SMC (Surveying the Agents of Galaxy Evolution in the tidally-disrupted, low-metallicity Small Magellanic Cloud) Spitzer legacy program are presented. These early results concentrate on the SAGE-SMC MIPS observations of the SMC Tail region. This region is the high H i column density portion of the Magellanic Bridge adjacent to the SMC Wing. We detect infrared dust emission and measure the gas-to-dust ratio in the SMC Tail and find it similar to that of the SMC Body. In addition, we find two embedded cluster regions that are resolved into multiple sources at all MIPS wavelengths.
Low-fat diets, in which carbohydrates replace some of the fat, decrease serum cholesterol. This decrease is due to decreases in LDL-cholesterol but in part to possibly harmful decreases in HDL-cholesterol. High-oil diets, in which oils rich in monounsaturated fat replace some of the saturated fat, decrease serum cholesterol mainly through LDL-cholesterol. We used these two diets to investigate whether a change in HDL-cholesterol would change flow-mediated vasodilation, a marker of endothelial function. We fed thirty-two healthy volunteers two controlled diets in a 2×3·5 weeks' randomised cross-over design to eliminate variation in changes due to differences between subjects. The low-fat diet contained 59·7 % energy (en%) as carbohydrates and 25·7 en% as fat (7·8 en% as monounsaturates); the oil-rich diet contained 37·8 en% as carbohydrates and 44·4 en% as fat (19·3 en% as monounsaturates). Average (SD) SERUM HDL-CHOLESTEROL AFTER THE LOW-FAT DIET WAS 0·21 (sd 0·12) mmol/l (8·1 mg/dl) lower than after the oil-rich diet. Serum triacylglycerols were 0·22 (sd 0·28) mmol/l (19·5 mg/dl) higher after the low-fat diet than after the oil-rich diet. Serum LDL and homocysteine concentrations remained stable. Flow-mediated vasodilation was 4·8 (SD 2·9) after the low-fat diet and 4·1 (SD 2·7) after the oil-rich diet (difference 0·7 %; 95 % CI -0·6, 1·9). Thus, although the low-fat diet produced a lower HDL-cholesterol than the high-oil diet, flow-mediated vasodilation, an early marker of cardiovascular disease, was not impaired.
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