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This paper considers the structure and priorities of the Carthaginian state in its imperial endeavours in both North Africa and across the Mediterranean, focusing especially on the well-documented period of the Punic Wars (264–146 BC.). It suggests that Carthaginian constitutional structures, in particular the split between civil shofetim (‘judges’) and military rabbim (‘generals’), impacted the strategic outlook and marginal bellicosity of the city, making it less competitive against its primary peer-rival in the Western Mediterranean, Rome.
For a pseudo-Anosov flow $\varphi $ without perfect fits on a closed $3$-manifold, Agol–Guéritaud produce a veering triangulation $\tau $ on the manifold M obtained by deleting the singular orbits of $\varphi $. We show that $\tau $ can be realized in M so that its 2-skeleton is positively transverse to $\varphi $, and that the combinatorially defined flow graph $\Phi $ embedded in M uniformly codes the orbits of $\varphi $ in a precise sense. Together with these facts, we use a modified version of the veering polynomial, previously introduced by the authors, to compute the growth rates of the closed orbits of $\varphi $ after cutting M along certain transverse surfaces, thereby generalizing the work of McMullen in the fibered setting. These results are new even in the case where the transverse surface represents a class in the boundary of a fibered cone of M. Our work can be used to study the flow $\varphi $ on the original closed manifold. Applications include counting growth rates of closed orbits after cutting along closed transverse surfaces, defining a continuous, convex entropy function on the ‘positive’ cone in $H^1$ of the cut-open manifold, and answering a question of Leininger about the closure of the set of all stretch factors arising as monodromies within a single fibered cone of a $3$-manifold. This last application connects to the study of endperiodic automorphisms of infinite-type surfaces and the growth rates of their periodic points.
To evaluate opportunities for assessing penicillin allergies among patients presenting to dental clinics.
Retrospective cross-sectional study.
VA dental clinics.
Adult patients with a documented penicillin allergy who received an antibiotic from a dentist between January 1, 2015, and December 31, 2018, were included.
Chart reviews were completed on random samples of 100 patients who received a noncephalosporin antibiotic and 200 patients who received a cephalosporin. Each allergy was categorized by severity. These categories were used to determine patient eligibility for 3 testing groups based on peer-reviewed algorithms: (1) no testing, (2) skin testing, and (3) oral test-dose challenge. Descriptive and bivariate statistics were used to compare facility and patient demographics first between true penicillin allergy, pseudo penicillin allergy, and missing allergy documentation, and between those who received a cephalosporin and those who did not at the dental visit.
Overall, 19% lacked documentation of the nature of allergic reaction, 53% were eligible for skin testing, 27% were eligible for an oral test-dose challenge, and 1% were contraindicated from testing. Male patients and African American patients were less likely to receive a cephalosporin.
Most penicillin-allergic patients in the VA receiving an antibiotic from a dentist are eligible for penicillin skin testing or an oral penicillin challenge. Further research is needed to understand the role of dentists and dental clinics in assessing penicillin allergies.
While declarative learning is dependent on the hippocampus, procedural learning and repetition priming can operate independently from the hippocampus, making them potential targets for behavioral interventions that utilize non-declarative memory systems to compensate for the declarative learning deficits associated with hippocampal insult. Few studies have assessed procedural learning and repetition priming in individuals with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI).
This study offers an overview across declarative, conceptual repetition priming, and procedural learning tasks by providing between-group effect sizes and Bayes Factors (BFs) comparing individuals with aMCI and controls. Seventy-six individuals with aMCI and 83 cognitively unimpaired controls were assessed. We hypothesized to see the largest differences between individuals with aMCI and controls on declarative learning, followed by conceptual repetition priming, with the smallest differences on procedural learning.
Consistent with our hypotheses, we found large differences between groups with supporting BFs on declarative learning. For conceptual repetition priming, we found a small-to-moderate between-group effect size and a non-conclusive BF somewhat in favor of a difference between groups. We found more variable but overall trivial differences on procedural learning tasks, with inconclusive BFs, in line with expectations.
The current results suggest that conceptual repetition priming does not remain intact in individuals with aMCI while procedural learning may remain intact. While additional studies are needed, our results contribute to the evidence-base that suggests that procedural learning may remain spared in aMCI and helps inform behavioral interventions that aim to utilize procedural learning in this population.
The military punishment of decimatio, the cudgelling by lot of one in ten men in a disgraced unit, often described as a cornerstone of Roman military discipline, was never practised during the third and second centuries BC. The punishment was possibly used as an extraordinary measure a couple of times in the fifth and fourth centuries BC. It soon fell into total desuetude but was cultivated as a rhetorical construct that proclaimed theoretical powers commanders no longer dared effect. It was only revived, or rather reinvented, during the Late Republic, a violent moment that saw the confluence of antiquarian enthusiasm with military dynasts whose unrestrained powers allowed them to manifest what had previously been an aristocratic talking point.
Lithium is viewed as the first-line long-term treatment for prevention of relapse in people with bipolar disorder.
This study examined factors associated with the likelihood of maintaining serum lithium levels within the recommended range and explored whether the monitoring interval could be extended in some cases.
We included 46 555 lithium rest requests in 3371 individuals over 7 years from three UK centres. Using lithium results in four categories (<0.4 mmol/L; 0.40–0.79 mmol/L; 0.80–0.99 mmol/L; ≥1.0 mmol/L), we determined the proportion of instances where lithium results remained stable or switched category on subsequent testing, considering the effects of age, duration of lithium therapy and testing history.
For tests within the recommended range (0.40–0.99 mmol/L categories), 84.5% of subsequent tests remained within this range. Overall, 3 monthly testing was associated with 90% of lithium results remaining within range, compared with 85% at 6 monthly intervals. In cases where the lithium level in the previous 12 months was on target (0.40–0.79 mmol/L; British National Formulary/National Institute for Health and Care Excellence criteria), 90% remained within the target range at 6 months. Neither age nor duration of lithium therapy had any significant effect on lithium level stability. Levels within the 0.80–0.99 mmol/L category were linked to a higher probability of moving to the ≥1.0 mmol/L category (10%) compared with those in the 0.4–0.79 mmol/L group (2%), irrespective of testing frequency.
We propose that for those who achieve 12 months of lithium tests within the 0.40–0.79 mmol/L range, the interval between tests could increase to 6 months, irrespective of age. Where lithium levels are 0.80–0.99 mmol/L, the test interval should remain at 3 months. This could reduce lithium test numbers by 15% and costs by ~$0.4 m p.a.
New occurrences of flask-shaped and envelope-bearing microfossils, including the predominantly Cambrian taxon Granomarginata, are reported from new localities, as well as from earlier in time (Ediacaran) than previously known. The stratigraphic range of Granomarginata extends into the Cambrian System, where it had a cosmopolitan distribution. This newly reported Ediacaran record includes areas from Norway (Baltica), Newfoundland (Avalonia) and Namibia (adjacent to the Kalahari Craton), and puts the oldest global occurrence of Granomarginata in the Indreelva Member (< 563 Ma) of the Stáhpogieddi Formation on the Digermulen Peninsula, Arctic Norway. Although Granomarginata is rare within the assemblage, these new occurrences together with previously reported occurrences from India and Poland, suggest a potentially widespread palaeogeographic distribution of Granomarginata through the middle–late Ediacaran interval. A new flask-shaped microfossil Lagoenaforma collaris gen. et sp. nov. is also reported in horizons containing Granomarginata from the Stáhpogieddi Formation in Norway and the Dabis Formation in Namibia, and flask-shaped fossils are also found in the Gibbett Hill Formation in Newfoundland. The Granomarginata–Lagoenaforma association, in addition to a low-diversity organic-walled microfossil assemblage, occurs in the strata postdating the Shuram carbon isotope excursion, and may eventually be of use in terminal Ediacaran biostratigraphy. These older occurrences of Granomarginata add to a growing record of body fossil taxa spanning the Ediacaran–Cambrian boundary.
Impaired olfaction may be a biomarker for early Lewy body disease, but its value in mild cognitive impairment with Lewy bodies (MCI-LB) is unknown. We compared olfaction in MCI-LB with MCI due to Alzheimer’s disease (MCI-AD) and healthy older adults. We hypothesized that olfactory function would be worse in probable MCI-LB than in both MCI-AD and healthy comparison subjects (HC).
Cross-sectional study assessing olfaction using Sniffin’ Sticks 16 (SS-16) in MCI-LB, MCI-AD, and HC with longitudinal follow-up. Differences were adjusted for age, and receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves were used for discriminating MCI-LB from MCI-AD and HC.
Participants were recruited from Memory Services in the North East of England.
Thirty-eight probable MCI-LB, 33 MCI-AD, 19 possible MCI-LB, and 32HC.
Olfaction was assessed using SS-16 and a questionnaire.
Participants with probable MCI-LB had worse olfaction than both MCI-AD (age-adjusted mean difference (B) = 2.05, 95% CI: 0.62–3.49, p = 0.005) and HC (B = 3.96, 95% CI: 2.51–5.40, p < 0.001). The previously identified cutoff score for the SS-16 of ≤ 10 had 84% sensitivity for probable MCI-LB (95% CI: 69–94%), but 30% specificity versus MCI-AD. ROC analysis found a lower cutoff of ≤ 7 was better (63% sensitivity for MCI-LB, with 73% specificity vs MCI-AD and 97% vs HC). Asking about olfactory impairments was not useful in identifying them.
MCI-LB had worse olfaction than MCI-AD and normal aging. A lower cutoff score of ≤ 7 is required when using SS-16 in such patients. Olfactory testing may have value in identifying early LB disease in memory services.
The present study aimed to clarify the neuropsychological profile of the emergent diagnostic category of Mild Cognitive Impairment with Lewy bodies (MCI-LB) and determine whether domain-specific impairments such as in memory were related to deficits in domain-general cognitive processes (executive function or processing speed).
Patients (n = 83) and healthy age- and sex-matched controls (n = 34) underwent clinical and imaging assessments. Probable MCI-LB (n = 44) and MCI-Alzheimer’s disease (AD) (n = 39) were diagnosed following National Institute on Aging-Alzheimer’s Association (NIA-AA) and dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) consortium criteria. Neuropsychological measures included cognitive and psychomotor speed, executive function, working memory, and verbal and visuospatial recall.
MCI-LB scored significantly lower than MCI-AD on processing speed [Trail Making Test B: p = .03, g = .45; Digit Symbol Substitution Test (DSST): p = .04, g = .47; DSST Error Check: p < .001, g = .68] and executive function [Trail Making Test Ratio (A/B): p = .04, g = .52] tasks. MCI-AD performed worse than MCI-LB on memory tasks, specifically visuospatial (Modified Taylor Complex Figure: p = .01, g = .46) and verbal (Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test: p = .04, g = .42) delayed recall measures. Stepwise discriminant analysis correctly classified the subtype in 65.1% of MCI patients (72.7% specificity, 56.4% sensitivity). Processing speed accounted for more group-associated variance in visuospatial and verbal memory in both MCI subtypes than executive function, while no significant relationships between measures were observed in controls (all ps > .05)
MCI-LB was characterized by executive dysfunction and slowed processing speed but did not show the visuospatial dysfunction expected, while MCI-AD displayed an amnestic profile. However, there was considerable neuropsychological profile overlap and processing speed mediated performance in both MCI subtypes.
Electroencephalographic (EEG) abnormalities are greater in mild cognitive impairment (MCI) with Lewy bodies (MCI-LB) than in MCI due to Alzheimer’s disease (MCI-AD) and may anticipate the onset of dementia. We aimed to assess whether quantitative EEG (qEEG) slowing would predict a higher annual hazard of dementia in MCI across these etiologies. MCI patients (n = 92) and healthy comparators (n = 31) provided qEEG recording and underwent longitudinal clinical and cognitive follow-up. Associations between qEEG slowing, measured by increased theta/alpha ratio, and clinical progression from MCI to dementia were estimated with a multistate transition model to account for death as a competing risk, while controlling for age, cognitive function, and etiology classified by an expert consensus panel.
Over a mean follow-up of 1.5 years (SD = 0.5), 14 cases of incident dementia and 5 deaths were observed. Increased theta/alpha ratio on qEEG was associated with increased annual hazard of dementia (hazard ratio = 1.84, 95% CI: 1.01–3.35). This extends previous findings that MCI-LB features early functional changes, showing that qEEG slowing may anticipate the onset of dementia in prospectively identified MCI.
The first demonstration of laser action in ruby was made in 1960 by T. H. Maiman of Hughes Research Laboratories, USA. Many laboratories worldwide began the search for lasers using different materials, operating at different wavelengths. In the UK, academia, industry and the central laboratories took up the challenge from the earliest days to develop these systems for a broad range of applications. This historical review looks at the contribution the UK has made to the advancement of the technology, the development of systems and components and their exploitation over the last 60 years.
Diets varying in SFA and MUFA content can impact glycaemic control; however, whether underlying differences in genetic make-up can influence blood glucose responses to these dietary fatty acids is unknown. We examined the impact of dietary oils varying in SFA/MUFA content on changes in blood glucose levels (primary outcome) and whether these changes were modified by variants in the stearoyl-CoA desaturase (SCD) gene (secondary outcome). Obese men and women participating in the randomised, crossover, isoenergetic, controlled-feeding Canola Oil Multicenter Intervention Trial II consumed three dietary oils for 6 weeks, with washout periods of ˜6 weeks between each treatment. Diets studied included a high SFA/low MUFA Control oil (36·6 % SFA/28·2 % MUFA), a conventional canola oil (6·2 % SFA/63·1 % MUFA) and a high-oleic acid canola oil (5·8 % SFA/74·7 % MUFA). No differences in fasting blood glucose were observed following the consumption of the dietary oils. However, when stratified by SCD genotypes, significant SNP-by-treatment interactions on blood glucose response were found with additive models for rs1502593 (P = 0·01), rs3071 (P = 0·02) and rs522951 (P = 0·03). The interaction for rs3071 remained significant (P = 0·005) when analysed with a recessive model, where individuals carrying the CC genotype showed an increase (0·14 (sem 0·09) mmol/l) in blood glucose levels with the Control oil diet, but reductions in blood glucose with both MUFA oil diets. Individuals carrying the AA and AC genotypes experienced reductions in blood glucose in response to all three oils. These findings identify a potential new target for personalised nutrition approaches aimed at improving glycaemic control.
Food security status is a continuum ranging from high to very low food security. While marginal food security falls next to high food security on the spectrum, new quantitative research indicates marginal food security status is associated with negative health outcomes and poor academic performance among college students. Qualitative research focusing on college students experiencing marginal food security has not been conducted. The current study aims to qualitatively explore experiences of college students with marginal food security and to identify themes to better understand and provide context regarding how marginal food security impacts students.
Students were recruited for semi-structured interviews with questions designed to study the challenges associated with students’ food situations. All interviews were recorded and transcribed with themes identified via an inductive approach.
A large public university on the US west coast.
Thirty college students.
Key themes that emerged: purchasing cheap unhealthy foods, insufficient time to prepare and eat meals on a regular basis, stress and anxiety around the inability to eat healthy food and future health issues, self-perception of health when eating poorly along with physical symptoms and low academic motivation by not fully participating in their courses due to few healthy food options or missing meals.
Marginal food security can potentially diminish students’ health and their capacity to learn and succeed in their coursework. The results emphasise that students experiencing marginal food security should not be grouped with students experiencing high food security.
The literature on nineteenth-century Newcastle city region is a narrative of industrial progress premised upon technological prowess. But there is another story to be told about the transformation of a relatively small northern town into a conurbation with the attributes of a modern city. This second process of ‘rounding out’ the city with social, cultural and political institutions to accompany the economic prowess is relatively under-reported. In this study, we follow 1,621 individuals and compare their record of being mentioned in the literature to their participation in 343 local institutions. The focus is directed towards those who are much more visible in the literature compared to institutional membership – ‘narrative heroes’ – and those with the reverse pattern, much more to be found in institutions than in the literature – civic builders. The two sets of individuals are discussed and reasons for their contrasting positions are suggested.
Cholinergic deficits are a hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and Lewy body dementia (LBD). The nucleus basalis of Meynert (NBM) provides the major source of cortical cholinergic input; studying its functional connectivity might, therefore, provide a tool for probing the cholinergic system and its degeneration in neurodegenerative diseases. Forty-six LBD patients, 29 AD patients, and 31 healthy age-matched controls underwent resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). A seed-based analysis was applied with seeds in the left and right NBM to assess functional connectivity between the NBM and the rest of the brain. We found a shift from anticorrelation in controls to positive correlations in LBD between the right/left NBM and clusters in right/left occipital cortex. Our results indicate that there is an imbalance in functional connectivity between the NBM and primary visual areas in LBD, which provides new insights into alterations within a part of the corticopetal cholinergic system that go beyond structural changes.
Type 2 diabetes results mainly from weight gain in adult life and affects one in twelve people worldwide. In the Diabetes REmission Clinical Trial (DiRECT), the primary care-led Counterweight-Plus weight management program achieved remission of type 2 diabetes (for up to six years) for forty-six percent of patients after one year and thirty-six percent after two years. The objective of this study was to estimate the implementation costs of the program, as well as its two-year within-trial cost effectiveness and lifetime cost effectiveness.
Within-trial cost effectiveness included the Counterweight-Plus costs (including training, practitioner appointments, and low-energy diet), medications, and all routine healthcare contacts, combined with achieved remission rates. Lifetime cost per quality-adjusted life-year (QALY) was estimated according to projected durations of remissions, assuming continued relapse rates as seen in year two of DiRECT and the consequent life expectancy, quality of life and healthcare costs.
The two-year intervention cost was EUR 1,580 per participant, with over eighty percent of the costs incurred in year one. Compared with the control group, medication savings were EUR 259 (95% confidence interval [CI]: 166–352) for anti-diabetes drugs and EUR 29 (95% CI: 12–47) for anti-hypertensive medications. The intervention was modeled with a lifetime horizon to achieve a mean 0.06 (95% CI: 0.04–0.09) gain in QALYs for the DiRECT population and a mean total lifetime cost saving per participant of EUR 1,497 (95% CI: 755–2,331), with the intervention becoming cost-saving within six years.
The intensive weight loss and maintenance program reduced the cost of anti-diabetes drugs through improved metabolic control, achieved diabetes remission in over one-third of participants, and reduced total healthcare contacts and costs over two years. A substantial lifetime healthcare cost saving is anticipated from periods of diabetes remission and delaying complications. Healthcare resources could be shifted cost effectively to establish diabetes remission services, using the existing DiRECT intervention, even if remissions are only maintained for limited durations. However, more research investment is needed to further improve weight-loss maintenance and extend remissions.
Dopaminergic imaging is an established biomarker for dementia with Lewy bodies, but its diagnostic accuracy at the mild cognitive impairment (MCI) stage remains uncertain.
To provide robust prospective evidence of the diagnostic accuracy of dopaminergic imaging at the MCI stage to either support or refute its inclusion as a biomarker for the diagnosis of MCI with Lewy bodies.
We conducted a prospective diagnostic accuracy study of baseline dopaminergic imaging with [123I]N-ω-fluoropropyl-2β-carbomethoxy-3β-(4-iodophenyl)nortropane single-photon emission computerised tomography (123I-FP-CIT SPECT) in 144 patients with MCI. Images were rated as normal or abnormal by a panel of experts with access to striatal binding ratio results. Follow-up consensus diagnosis based on the presence of core features of Lewy body disease was used as the reference standard.
At latest assessment (mean 2 years) 61 patients had probable MCI with Lewy bodies, 26 possible MCI with Lewy bodies and 57 MCI due to Alzheimer's disease. The sensitivity of baseline FP-CIT visual rating for probable MCI with Lewy bodies was 66% (95% CI 52–77%), specificity 88% (76–95%) and accuracy 76% (68–84%), with positive likelihood ratio 5.3.
It is over five times as likely for an abnormal scan to be found in probable MCI with Lewy bodies than MCI due to Alzheimer's disease. Dopaminergic imaging appears to be useful at the MCI stage in cases where Lewy body disease is suspected clinically.