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In a multicenter cohort of 963 adults hospitalized due to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), 5% had a proven hospital-acquired infection (HAI) and 21% had a proven, probable, or possible HAI. Risk factors for proven or probable HAIs included intensive care unit admission, dexamethasone use, severe COVID-19, heart failure, and antibiotic exposure upon admission.
Twelve evidence-based profiles of roles across the translational workforce and two patients were made available through clinical and translational science (CTS) Personas, a project of the Clinical and Translational Science Awards (CTSA) Program National Center for Data to Health (CD2H). The persona profiles were designed and researched to demonstrate the key responsibilities, motivators, goals, software use, pain points, and professional development needs of those working across the spectrum of translation, from basic science to clinical research to public health. The project’s goal was to provide reliable documents that could be used to inform CTSA software development projects, educational resources, and communication initiatives. This paper presents the initiative to create personas for the translational workforce, including the methodology, engagement strategy, and lessons learned. Challenges faced and successes achieved by the project may serve as a roadmap for others searching for best practices in the creation of Persona profiles.
The Colorado Twin Registry (CTR) is a population-based registry formed from birth and school records including twins born between 1968 and the present. Two previous reports on the CTR [Rhea et al., (2006). Twin Research and Human Genetics, 9, 941–949; Rhea et al., (2013).Twin Research and Human Genetics, 16, 351–357] covered developments in the CTR through 2012. This report briefly summarizes previously presented material on ascertainment and recruitment and the relationships between samples and studies, discusses developments since 2012 for four previously described twin samples, describes two new samples and their complementary studies and expands on two subjects briefly mentioned in the last report: a history of genotyping efforts involving CTR samples, and a survey of collaborations and consortia in which CTR twins have been included. The CTR remains an active resource for both ongoing, longitudinal research and the recruitment of new twin samples for newly identified research opportunities.
Psychosocial interventions that mitigate psychosocial distress in cancer patients are important. The primary aim of this study was to examine the feasibility and acceptability of an adaptation of the Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) program among adult cancer patients. A secondary aim was to examine pre–post-program changes in psychosocial wellbeing.
The research design was a feasibility and acceptability study, with an examination of pre- to post-intervention changes in psychosocial measures. A study information pack was posted to 173 adult cancer patients 6 months–5 years post-diagnosis, with an invitation to attend an eight-week group-based adaptation of the MSC program.
Thirty-two (19%) consented to the program, with 30 commencing. Twenty-seven completed the program (mean age: 62.93 years, SD 14.04; 17 [63%] female), attending a mean 6.93 (SD 1.11) group sessions. There were no significant differences in medico-demographic factors between program-completers and those who did not consent. However, there was a trend toward shorter time since diagnosis in the program-completers group. Program-completers rated the program highly regarding content, relevance to the concerns of cancer patients, and the likelihood of recommending the program to other cancer patients. Sixty-three percent perceived that their mental wellbeing had improved from pre- to post-program; none perceived a deterioration in mental wellbeing. Small-to-medium effects were observed for depressive symptoms, fear of cancer recurrence, stress, loneliness, body image satisfaction, mindfulness, and self-compassion.
Significance of results
The MSC program appears feasible and acceptable to adults diagnosed with non-advanced cancer. The preliminary estimates of effect sizes in this sample suggest that participation in the program was associated with improvements in psychosocial wellbeing. Collectively, these findings suggest that there may be value in conducting an adequately powered randomized controlled trial to determine the efficacy of the MSC program in enhancing the psychosocial wellbeing of cancer patients.
The purpose of this update is to provide the most current information about both the Colorado Adoption Project (CAP) and the Longitudinal Twin Study (LTS) and to introduce the Colorado Adoption/Twin Study of Lifespan behavioral development and cognitive aging (CATSLife), a product of their merger and a unique study of lifespan behavioral development and cognitive aging. The primary objective of CATSLife is to assess the unique saliency of early childhood genetic and environmental factors to adult cognitive maintenance and change, as well as proximal influences and innovations that emerge across development. CATSLife is currently assessing up to 1600 individuals on the cusp of middle age, targeting those between 30 and 40 years of age. The ongoing CATSLife data collection is described as well as the longitudinal data available from the earlier CAP and LTS assessments. We illustrate CATSLife via current projects and publications, highlighting the measurement of genetic, biochemical, social, sociodemographic and environmental indices, including geospatial features, and their impact on cognitive maintenance in middle adulthood. CATSLife provides an unparalleled opportunity to assess prospectively the etiologies of cognitive change and test the saliency of early childhood versus proximal influences on the genesis of cognitive decline.
Whole-grain cereal breakfast consumption has been associated with beneficial effects on glucose and insulin metabolism as well as satiety. Pearl millet is a popular ancient grain variety that can be grown in hot, dry regions. However, little is known about its health effects. The present study investigated the effect of a pearl millet porridge (PMP) compared with a well-known Scottish oats porridge (SOP) on glycaemic, gastrointestinal, hormonal and appetitive responses. In a randomised, two-way crossover trial, twenty-six healthy participants consumed two isoenergetic/isovolumetric PMP or SOP breakfast meals, served with a drink of water. Blood samples for glucose, insulin, glucagon-like peptide 1, glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide (GIP), peptide YY, gastric volumes and appetite ratings were collected 2 h postprandially, followed by an ad libitum meal and food intake records for the remainder of the day. The incremental AUC (iAUC2h) for blood glucose was not significantly different between the porridges (P > 0·05). The iAUC2h for gastric volume was larger for PMP compared with SOP (P = 0·045). The iAUC2h for GIP concentration was significantly lower for PMP compared with SOP (P = 0·001). Other hormones and appetite responses were similar between meals. In conclusion, the present study reports, for the first time, data on glycaemic and physiological responses to a pearl millet breakfast, showing that this ancient grain could represent a sustainable alternative with health-promoting characteristics comparable with oats. GIP is an incretin hormone linked to TAG absorption in adipose tissue; therefore, the lower GIP response for PMP may be an added health benefit.
The first episode of psychosis is a critical period in the emergence of cardiometabolic risk.
We set out to explore the influence of individual and lifestyle factors on cardiometabolic outcomes in early psychosis.
This was a prospective cohort study of 293 UK adults presenting with first-episode psychosis investigating the influence of sociodemographics, lifestyle (physical activity, sedentary behaviour, nutrition, smoking, alcohol, substance use) and medication on cardiometabolic outcomes over the following 12 months.
Rates of obesity and glucose dysregulation rose from 17.8% and 12%, respectively, at baseline to 23.7% and 23.7% at 1 year. Little change was seen over time in the 76.8% tobacco smoking rate or the quarter who were sedentary for over 10 h daily. We found no association between lifestyle at baseline or type of antipsychotic medication prescribed with either baseline or 1-year cardiometabolic outcomes. Median haemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) rose by 3.3 mmol/mol in participants from Black and minority ethnic (BME) groups, with little change observed in their White counterparts. At 12 months, one-third of those with BME heritage exceeded the threshold for prediabetes (HbA1c >39 mmol/mol).
Unhealthy lifestyle choices are prevalent in early psychosis and cardiometabolic risk worsens over the next year, creating an important window for prevention. We found no evidence, however, that preventative strategies should be preferentially directed based on lifestyle habits. Further work is needed to determine whether clinical strategies should allow for differential patterns of emergence of cardiometabolic risk in people of different ethnicities.
Incorporation of cover crop residue into the soil has been suggested as a means for reducing weed seedbanks. To explore this hypothesis, we buried mesh bags of seeds mixed with sand at 15-cm depth in late fall in plots that had been planted with rye (Secale cereale L.) or hairy vetch (Vicia villosa Roth.) or left unplanted. Separate bags contained either velvetleaf (Abutilon theophrasti Medik.), giant foxtail (Setaria faberi Herrm.), Powell amaranth (Amaranthus powellii S. Watson), or common lambsquarters (Chenopodium album L.). The experiment used a randomized complete block design with five replications, and enough bags were buried to allow a final recovery in each of the following three springs. Each spring, bags were exhumed, and seeds were either counted and tested for viability or mixed with chopped cover crop material or simply stirred for control bags, and the material was reburied. The experiment was completed twice with initial burials in fall of 2011 and 2013. Rye had no consistent effect on persistence of seeds of any of the species. For two observation intervals, rye increased persistence of a species; for another two intervals, it decreased persistence relative to the control; but mostly rye did not affect persistence. Hairy vetch decreased persistence of C. album and A. powellii in both runs of the experiment but had no effect on persistence of A. theophrasti and S. faberi. Germination of the first two species is promoted by nitrate, whereas A. theophrasti germination is not sensitive to nitrate, and S. faberi is only rarely nitrate sensitive. We suggest that nitrate released during decomposition of hairy vetch may have promoted fatal germination of C. album and A. powellii. Incorporation of legume cover crops like hairy vetch may provide a means for decreasing the seedbanks of the many weed species whose germination is promoted by nitrate. The lack of any reduction of A. theophrasti and S. faberi seed persistence in response to hairy vetch and the inconsistent and mostly negligible effect of rye indicate that a general increase in readily decomposable organic matter through incorporation of cover crops may be ineffective at reducing weed seedbanks.
To prioritise policy actions for government to improve the food environment and contribute to reduced obesity and related diseases.
Cross-sectional study applying the Food Environment Policy Index (Food EPI) in two stages. First, the evidence on all relevant policies was compiled, through an Internet search of government documents, and reviewed for accuracy and completeness by government officials. Second, independent experts were brought together to identify critical gaps and prioritise actions to fill those gaps, through a two-stage rating process.
A total of seventy-three independent experts from forty-one organisations were involved in the exercise.
The top priority policy actions for government identified were: (i) control the advertising of unhealthy foods to children; (ii) implement the levy on sugary drinks; (iii) reduce the sugar, fat and salt content in processed foods (leading to an energy reduction); (iv) monitor school and nursery food standards; (v) prioritise health and the environment in the 25-year Food and Farming Plan; (vi) adopt a national food action plan; (vii) monitor the food environment; (viii) apply buying standards to all public institutions; (ix) strengthen planning laws to discourage less healthy food offers; and (x) evaluate food-related programmes and policies.
Applying the Food EPI resulted in agreement on the ten priority actions required to improve the food environment. The Food EPI has proved to be a useful tool in developing consensus for action to address the obesity epidemic among a broad group of experts in a complex legislative environment.
Patients who recover from an acute episode of psychosis are frequently prescribed prophylactic antipsychotics for many years, especially if they are diagnosed as having schizophrenia. However, there is a dearth of evidence concerning the long-term effectiveness of this practice, and growing concern over the cumulative effects of antipsychotics on physical health and brain structure. Although controversy remains concerning some of the data, the wise psychiatrist should regularly review the benefit to each patient of continuing prophylactic antipsychotics against the risk of side-effects and loss of effectiveness through the development of supersensitivity of the dopamine D2 receptor. Psychiatrists should work with their patients to slowly reduce the antipsychotic to the lowest dose that prevents the return of distressing symptoms. Up to 40% of those whose psychosis remits after a first episode should be able to achieve a good outcome in the long term either with no antipsychotic medication or with a very low dose.
Giant ragweed has been increasing as a major weed of row crops in the last
30 yr, but quantitative data regarding its pattern and mechanisms of spread
in crop fields are lacking. To address this gap, we conducted a Web-based
survey of certified crop advisors in the U.S. Corn Belt and Ontario, Canada.
Participants were asked questions regarding giant ragweed and crop
production practices for the county of their choice. Responses were mapped
and correlation analyses were conducted among the responses to determine
factors associated with giant ragweed populations. Respondents rated giant
ragweed as the most or one of the most difficult weeds to manage in 45% of
421 U.S. counties responding, and 57% of responding counties reported giant
ragweed populations with herbicide resistance to acetolactate synthase
inhibitors, glyphosate, or both herbicides. Results suggest that giant
ragweed is increasing in crop fields outward from the east-central U.S. Corn
Belt in most directions. Crop production practices associated with giant
ragweed populations included minimum tillage, continuous soybean, and
multiple-application herbicide programs; ecological factors included giant
ragweed presence in noncrop edge habitats, early and prolonged emergence,
and presence of the seed-burying common earthworm in crop fields. Managing
giant ragweed in noncrop areas could reduce giant ragweed migration from
noncrop habitats into crop fields and slow its spread. Where giant ragweed
is already established in crop fields, including a more diverse combination
of crop species, tillage practices, and herbicide sites of action will be
critical to reduce populations, disrupt emergence patterns, and select
against herbicide-resistant giant ragweed genotypes. Incorporation of a
cereal grain into the crop rotation may help suppress early giant ragweed
emergence and provide chemical or mechanical control options for
late-emerging giant ragweed.
Research reveals mixed results regarding the utility of standardized cognitive and academic tests to predict educational outcomes in youth following a traumatic brain injury (TBI). Yet, deficits in everyday school-based outcomes are prevalent after pediatric TBI. The current study used path modeling to test the hypothesis that parent ratings of adolescents’ daily behaviors associated with executive functioning (EF) would predict long-term functional educational outcomes following pediatric TBI, even when injury severity and patient demographics were included in the model. Furthermore, we contrasted the predictive strength of the EF behavioral ratings with that of a common measure of verbal memory. A total of 132 adolescents who were hospitalized for moderate to severe TBI were recruited to participate in a randomized clinical intervention trial. EF ratings and verbal memory were measured within 6 months of the injury; functional educational outcomes were measured 12 months later. EF ratings and verbal memory added to injury severity in predicting educational competence post injury but did not predict post-injury initiation of special education. The results demonstrated that measurement of EF behaviors is an important research and clinical tool for prediction of functional outcomes in pediatric TBI. (JINS, 2013, 19, 1–9)
Sexual dysfunction is common in psychotic disorder but it is not clear
whether it is intrinsic to the development of the illness or secondary to
To compare sexual function in people at ultra-high risk (UHR) of a
psychotic disorder, patients with first-episode psychosis predominantly
taking antipsychotic drugs and healthy volunteers.
Sexual function was assessed in a UHR group (n = 31), a
group with first-episode psychosis (n = 37) and a
matched control group of healthy volunteers (n = 56)
using the Sexual Function Questionnaire.
There was a significant effect of group on sexual function
(P<0.001). Sexual dysfunction was evident in 50%
of the UHR group, 65% of first-episode patients and 21% of controls.
Within the UHR group, sexual dysfunction was more marked in those who
subsequently developed psychosis than in those who did not. Across all
groups the severity of sexual dysfunction was correlated with the
severity of psychotic symptoms (P<0.001). Within the
first-episode group there was no significant difference in sexual
dysfunction between patients taking prolactin-raising v.
Sexual dysfunction is present prior to onset of psychosis, suggesting it
is intrinsic to the development of illness unlikely to be related to the
prolactin-raising properties of antipsychotic medication.
We have developed a QCM (Quartz Crystal Microbalance) based method for direct gravimetric determination of water adsorption on PuO2 surrogate surfaces, especially CeO2, under conditions representative of those in a typical PuO2 storage can. In this application, the method of transduction of the QCM relies upon the linear relationship between the resonant frequency of piezoelectrically active quartz crystals and the mass adsorbed on the crystal surface. The spurious effect of high temperatures on the resonant frequency of coated QCM crystals has been compensated for by modeling the temperature dependence of the frequency response of the surrogate coated-QCM crystal in the absence of water. Preliminary results indicate that water is readily adsorbed from the vapor phase into porous metal oxide structures by capillary condensation, an observation that may have important ramifications for water uptake within the packed powder beds that may obtain in PuO2 storage cans.
Simple Hydroxamic acids (XHAs) are salt free, organic compounds with affinities for hard cations such as Fe3+, Np4+, Pu4+ and have been identified as suitable reagents for the control of Pu and Np in advanced nuclear fuel reprocessing. Building upon previous work on the neptunium(IV)-formohydroxamic(FHA) acid system , a model that describes the hydrolysis of the acetohydroxamate moiety has been extended to include hydrolysis of bishydroxamatoneptunium(IV) complex. The model has been used to determine the rate constants for hydrolysis of mono- and bis-acetohydroxamatoneptunium(IV) at 25 °C, which were found to be 1.0×10-5 dm3 mol-1 s-1 and 5.0×10-5 dm3 mol-1 s-1, respectively.
Currently in the nuclear industry, surface contamination in the form of radioactive metal or metal oxide deposits is most commonly removed by chemical decontamination, electrochemical decontamination or physical attrition. Physical attrition techniques are generally used on structural materials (concrete, plaster), with (electro)chemical methods being used to decontaminate metallic or painted surfaces. The most common types of (electro)chemical decontamination are the use of simple mineral acids such as nitric acid or cerium (IV) oxidation (MEDOC). Use of both of these reagents frequently results in the dissolution of a layer of the substrate surface increasing the amount of secondary waste which leads to greater burden on downstream effluent treatment and waste management plants. In this context, both mineral acids and MEDOC can be indiscriminate in the surfaces attacked during deployment, e.g. attacking in transit through a pipe system to the site of contamination resulting in both diminished effect of the decontaminating reagent upon arrival at its target site and an increased secondary waste management requirement. This provides two main requirements for a more ideal decontamination reagent: Improved area specificity and a dissolution power equal to or greater than the previously mentioned current decontaminants.
Photochemically promoted processes may provide such a decontamination technique. Photochemical reduction of metal ion valence states to aid in heavy metal deposition has already been extensively studied, with reductive manipulation also being achieved with uranium and plutonium simulants (Ce). Importantly photooxidation of a variety of solution phase metals, including neptunium, has also been achieved. Here we briefly review existing decontamination techniques and report on the potential application of photo promoted oxidation technologies to metal dissolution (including process steels) and to the dissolution of adsorbed actinide contaminants.