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Anxiety and depression are leading causes of disability worldwide, yet individuals are often unable to access appropriate treatment. There is a need to develop effective interventions that can be delivered remotely. Previous research has suggested that emotional processing biases are a potential target for intervention, and these may be altered through brief training programs.
We report two experimental medicine studies of emotional bias training in two samples: individuals from the general population (n = 522) and individuals currently taking antidepressants to treat anxiety or depression (n = 212). Participants, recruited online, completed four sessions of EBT from their own home. Mental health and cognitive functioning outcomes were assessed at baseline, immediately post-training, and at 2-week follow-up.
In both studies, our intervention successfully trained participants to perceive ambiguous social information more positively. This persisted at a 2-week follow-up. There was no clear evidence that this change in emotional processing transferred to improvements in symptoms in the primary analyses. However, in both studies, there was weak evidence for improved quality of life following EBT amongst individuals with more depressive symptoms at baseline. No clear evidence of transfer effects was observed for self-reported daily stress, anhedonia or depressive symptoms. Exploratory analyses suggested that younger participants reported greater treatment gains.
These studies demonstrate the effectiveness of delivering a multi-session online training program to promote lasting cognitive changes. Given the inconsistent evidence for transfer effects, EBT requires further development before it can be considered as a treatment for anxiety and depression.
Sixty-five years ago, Teal’s (1962) study showed that salt marsh primary production was greater than community respiration. To explain this result, he suggested that marshes exported excess organic matter either directly as organic matter, or as organisms, to coastal waters. This concept, that marshes were “outwelling” material to the adjacent estuary and coastal oceans, was soon expanded to nutrients as well. However, the actual importance of the marsh in supplying organic matter and nutrients to adjacent coastal systems has been controversial and reviews debating the importance of outwelling from marshes have regularly appeared over the decades (Nixon 1980, Childers et al. 2000, Odum 2000, Valiela et al. 2000, Boynton and Nixon 2013). It has also been argued that in some cases the coastal ocean can act as a source of nutrients to the marsh and estuary (“inwelling”).
In April 2019, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) released its recovery plan for the jaguar Panthera onca after several decades of discussion, litigation and controversy about the status of the species in the USA. The USFWS estimated that potential habitat, south of the Interstate-10 highway in Arizona and New Mexico, had a carrying capacity of c. six jaguars, and so focused its recovery programme on areas south of the USA–Mexico border. Here we present a systematic review of the modelling and assessment efforts over the last 25 years, with a focus on areas north of Interstate-10 in Arizona and New Mexico, outside the recovery unit considered by the USFWS. Despite differences in data inputs, methods, and analytical extent, the nine previous studies found support for potential suitable jaguar habitat in the central mountain ranges of Arizona and New Mexico. Applying slightly modified versions of the USFWS model and recalculating an Arizona-focused model over both states provided additional confirmation. Extending the area of consideration also substantially raised the carrying capacity of habitats in Arizona and New Mexico, from six to 90 or 151 adult jaguars, using the modified USFWS models. This review demonstrates the crucial ways in which choosing the extent of analysis influences the conclusions of a conservation plan. More importantly, it opens a new opportunity for jaguar conservation in North America that could help address threats from habitat losses, climate change and border infrastructure.
In this paper, a low profile 4 × 4 multiple input and multiple output (MIMO) antenna is proposed and designed for wireless local area network (WLAN) application using a square split-ring resonator. Initially, a single square-patch antenna is designed with square-shaped split-ring slot. Subsequently, the two-element MIMO antenna is designed and it is extended to four-element MIMO antenna. Finally, the defected ground structure (DGS) is implemented in order to enhance antenna performance. The antenna elements are placed opposite to each other. The mutual coupling between the antennas elements is reduced by DGS. The proposed single, two and four-element antennas operate at 5.8 GHz for WLAN. The overall performance is measured in terms of S parameter, radiation pattern, and envelope correlation coefficient. The simulated results are verified through measurements. The simulated and measured results demonstrate that the proposed 4 × 4 MIMO antenna is the most suitable for WLAN applications.
Firms in the USA rely on highly skilled immigrants, particularly in the science and engineering sectors. Yet, the recent politics of immigration marks a substantial change to US immigration policy. We implement a conjoint experiment that isolates the causal effect of nativist, anti-immigrant, pronouncements on where skilled potential-migrants choose to immigrate to. While these policies have a significantly negative effect on the destination choices of Chilean and UK student subjects, they have little effect on the choices of Indian and Chinese student subjects. These results are confirmed through an unobtrusive test of subjects’ general immigration destination preferences. Moreover, there is some evidence that the negative effect of these nativist policies are particularly salient for those who self-identify with the Left.
To examine patterns of taxed and untaxed food and beverage shopping across store types after Mexico’s sugary drink and non-essential food taxes, the nutritional quality of these patterns and the socio-economic characteristics associated with them.
We performed k-means cluster analyses using households’ percentage of food and beverage purchases from each store type (i.e. convenience stores, traditional shops (e.g. bodegas, tiendas, mom-and-pop shops), supermarkets, wholesalers and others). We calculated adjusted mean proportions of taxed and untaxed products (ml or g/capita per d) purchased in each pattern. We studied the associations between households’ SES and shopping patterns using multinomial logistic regressions. Within shopping patterns, we obtained mean volumes and proportions of taxed and untaxed food and beverage subgroups and calculated the proportion of products purchased at each store type.
Urban Mexican households (n 5493) from the Nielsen Mexico Consumer Panel Survey 2015.
We found four beverage shopping patterns and three food shopping patterns, driven by the store type where most purchases were made. For beverages, 48 % of households were clustered in the Traditional pattern and purchased the highest proportion of taxed beverages. Low-SES households had the highest probability of clustering in the Traditional beverage shopping pattern. For foods, 35 % of households were clustered into the Supermarket pattern. High-SES households had the highest probability of clustering in the Supermarket food shopping pattern.
The combination of store types where Mexican households purchase packaged foods and beverages varies. However, households in all shopping patterns and SES purchase taxed beverages mainly at traditional stores. Store-level strategies should be developed to intervene on traditional stores to improve the healthfulness of purchases.
Outbreaks of cyclosporiasis, a food-borne illness caused by the coccidian parasite Cyclospora cayetanensis have increased in the USA in recent years, with approximately 2300 laboratory-confirmed cases reported in 2018. Genotyping tools are needed to inform epidemiological investigations, yet genotyping Cyclospora has proven challenging due to its sexual reproductive cycle which produces complex infections characterized by high genetic heterogeneity. We used targeted amplicon deep sequencing and a recently described ensemble-based distance statistic that accommodates heterogeneous (mixed) genotypes and specimens with partial genotyping data, to genotype and cluster 648 C. cayetanensis samples submitted to CDC in 2018. The performance of the ensemble was assessed by comparing ensemble-identified genetic clusters to analogous clusters identified independently based on common food exposures. Using these epidemiologic clusters as a gold standard, the ensemble facilitated genetic clustering with 93.8% sensitivity and 99.7% specificity. Hence, we anticipate that this procedure will greatly complement epidemiologic investigations of cyclosporiasis.
Poultry production is an important way of enhancing the livelihoods of rural populations, especially in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). As poultry production in LMICs remains dominated by backyard systems with low inputs and low outputs, considerable yield gaps exist. Intensification can increase poultry productivity, production and income. This process is relatively recent in LMICs compared to high-income countries. The management practices and the constraints faced by smallholders trying to scale-up their production, in the early stages of intensification, are poorly understood and described. We thus investigated the features of the small-scale commercial chicken sector in a rural area distant from major production centres. We surveyed 111 commercial chicken farms in Kenya in 2016. We targeted farms that sell the majority of their production, owning at least 50 chickens, partly or wholly confined and provided with feeds. We developed a typology of semi-intensive farms. Farms were found mainly to raise dual-purpose chickens of local and improved breeds, in association with crops and were not specialized in any single product or market. We identified four types of semi-intensive farms that were characterized based on two groups of variables related to intensification and accessibility: (i) remote, small-scale old farms, with small flocks, growing a lot of their own feed; (ii) medium-scale, old farms with a larger flock and well located in relation to markets and (iii) large-scale recently established farms, with large flocks, (iii-a) well located and buying chicks from third-party providers and (iii-b) remotely located and hatching their own chicks. The semi-intensive farms we surveyed were highly heterogeneous in terms of size, age, accessibility, management, opportunities and challenges. Farm location affects market access and influences the opportunities available to farmers, resulting in further diversity in farm profiles. The future of these semi-intensive farms could be compromised by several factors, including the competition with large-scale intensive farmers and with importations. Our study suggests that intensification trajectories in rural areas of LMICs are potentially complex, diverse and non-linear. A better understanding of intensification trajectories should, however, be based on longitudinal data. This could, in turn, help designing interventions to support small-scale farmers.
Raw milk cheeses are commonly consumed in France and are also a common source of foodborne outbreaks (FBOs). Both an FBO surveillance system and a laboratory-based surveillance system aim to detect Salmonella outbreaks. In early August 2018, five familial FBOs due to Salmonella spp. were reported to a regional health authority. Investigation identified common exposure to a raw goats' milk cheese, from which Salmonella spp. were also isolated, leading to an international product recall. Three weeks later, on 22 August, a national increase in Salmonella Newport ST118 was detected through laboratory surveillance. Concomitantly isolates from the earlier familial clusters were confirmed as S. Newport ST118. Interviews with a selection of the laboratory-identified cases revealed exposure to the same cheese, including exposure to batches not included in the previous recall, leading to an expansion of the recall. The outbreak affected 153 cases, including six cases in Scotland. S. Newport was detected in the cheese and in the milk of one of the producer's goats. The difference in the two alerts generated by this outbreak highlight the timeliness of the FBO system and the precision of the laboratory-based surveillance system. It is also a reminder of the risks associated with raw milk cheeses.
Introduction: Emergency department (ED) flow is a strong predictor of patient safety, quality of care and provider satisfaction. Throughput interventions have been shown to improve flow metrics, yet few studies have considered MD leadership roles and evaluated provider experience. Our objective was to evaluate the emergency physician lead (EPL) role, a novel MD staffing initiative. Methods: This mixed-method observational time series analysis evaluated ED metrics at two tertiary EDs including ED length of stay (LOS), EMS Park LOS and physician initial assessment (PIA) time as well as 72-hour readmit and left without being seen (LWBS) rates. Data was collected from the ED information system database for control (Dec 6, 2017-Feb 28, 2018 SITE1 and Mar 1–May 31, 2018 SITE2), pre (Sept 3-Nov 30, 2018 SITE 1 and Dec 3, 2018-Feb 28, 2019 SITE2) and post (Dec 3, 2018 –Feb 28, 2019 SITE1, Mar 1- May 31, 2019 SITE2) periods for adult patients presenting to each site. Site data was analyzed independently using descriptive and inferential statistics to calculate differences in means, and means were compared using t-tests. A survey elicited provider feedback from ED physicians, nurses, and EMS professionals on the effect of the EPL on throughput, timeliness of admissions and discharges, provider workload, and the EPL as a resource to other professionals. Results: The number of ED visits at SITE1 were 13136 (Ctrl), 13236 (Pre) and 13137 (Post), and at SITE2 were 14371(Ctrl), 13866 (Pre) and 14962 (Post). Mean ED LOS was decreased by 17 min in post vs control and 20 min vs pre at SITE1 (p < 0.01). SITE2 saw an increase in ED LOS by 7 min vs control and 8 min vs pre (p < 0.01). EMS LOS at SITE1 was decreased by 21 min vs control and 22 min vs pre (p < 0.01), but was increased at SITE2 by 2 min vs control (p = 0.09) and 14 min vs pre (p < 0.01). PIA time at SITE1 was decreased by 15 min vs control (p < 0.01) and 13 min vs pre and increased by 5 min vs control and 12 min vs pre at SITE2 (p < 0.01). 72 hour readmit and LWBS rates were unchanged at both sites. Qualitative feedback from ED providers highlighted the early provision of treatments and investigations by the EPL, and many felt the EPL was an important resource. Conclusion: The inclusion of both quantitative and qualitative data in this study provided a robust analysis of the impact of the EPL role and demonstrated modest but important improvements. A site-dependent, carefully considered implementation of the EPL role may improve ED metrics and provider experiences.
Implementation of genome-scale sequencing in clinical care has significant challenges: the technology is highly dimensional with many kinds of potential results, results interpretation and delivery require expertise and coordination across multiple medical specialties, clinical utility may be uncertain, and there may be broader familial or societal implications beyond the individual participant. Transdisciplinary consortia and collaborative team science are well poised to address these challenges. However, understanding the complex web of organizational, institutional, physical, environmental, technologic, and other political and societal factors that influence the effectiveness of consortia is understudied. We describe our experience working in the Clinical Sequencing Evidence-Generating Research (CSER) consortium, a multi-institutional translational genomics consortium.
A key aspect of the CSER consortium was the juxtaposition of site-specific measures with the need to identify consensus measures related to clinical utility and to create a core set of harmonized measures. During this harmonization process, we sought to minimize participant burden, accommodate project-specific choices, and use validated measures that allow data sharing.
Identifying platforms to ensure swift communication between teams and management of materials and data were essential to our harmonization efforts. Funding agencies can help consortia by clarifying key study design elements across projects during the proposal preparation phase and by providing a framework for data sharing data across participating projects.
In summary, time and resources must be devoted to developing and implementing collaborative practices as preparatory work at the beginning of project timelines to improve the effectiveness of research consortia.
An increasing number of treatment studies focus on impaired cognition and emotion processing in schizophrenia. In study 1 we evaluated neuronal activation with fMRI during facial emotion processing in schizophrenia patients treated with new antipsychotics. The study 2 was carried out in order to evaluate whether combinations of new antipsychotics with a cognitive training (Cogpack) or a Training of Affect Decoding (TAD) were more effective than new antipsychotics alone.
In the first study patients with schizophrenia (n=11) and matched healthy controls (n=11) viewed facial displays of emotions. FMRI was used to measure BOLD signal changes as patients alternated beween tasks requiring discrimination of emotional valence of faces and age. In the second study schizophrenic patients (n=20) were compared with a randomized group of patients in the Cogpack (N=20) and in the TAD (n=20).
The same activation patterns in the amygdala were apparent in schizophrenic patients treated with new antipsychotics and healthy controls. The cognition training group revealed significant improvements in cognitive functions and transfer effects in skills needed for daily life. In the TAD group significant improvements were found in recognition of sad facial emotions.
New antipsychotics may improve the functionality of the networks needed for emotion processing and cognition. Cogpack training and TAD, in combination with new antipsychotics, are important treatment techniques for improving social functioning relevant for rehabilitation.
The new channels of communication as social media (e.g. Facebook and Twitter) and the social marketing campaign (i.e. campaign focused on enabling, encouraging and supporting behavioural changes among target audiences) can represent useful strategies to challenge stigma attached to mental disorders.
To evaluate the efficacy of the social marketing campaign of the time to change (SMC-TTC) anti-stigma programme on the target population in England during 2009–2014.
To assess the impact of the SMC-TTC anti-stigma programme in terms of:
– use of the social media channels;
– levels of awareness of the SMC-TTC;
– changes in knowledge, attitude, and behaviour related to mental disorders.
Participants completed the mental health knowledge schedule (MAKS), the community attitudes toward mental illness (CAMI) and the reported and intended behaviour scale (RIBS), together with an ad-hoc schedule on socio-demographic characteristics.
In total, 10526 people were interviewed, it was found a growing usage of the SMC-TTC media channels and of the level of awareness of the campaign (P < 0.001). Being aware of the SMC-TTC was found to be associated with higher score at MAKS (OR = .95, CI = .68 to 1.21; P < .001), at “tolerance and support” CAMI subscale (OR = .12, CI = .09 to .16; P < .001) and RIBS (OR = .71, CI = .51 to .92; P < .001), controlling for confounders.
In the general population, SMC-TTC has been found to be effective in improving attitudes and behaviours towards people with mental disorders.
Considering these promising results obtained in England, social media can represent the possible way forward for challenging stigma. The future on-going evaluation of the SMC-TTC may further shed light on the essential role of social media in reducing of stigma and discrimination.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
In England, during 2009–2014 the ‘Time to Change’ anti-stigma programme has included a social marketing campaign (SMC) using mass media channels, social media and social contact events but the efficacy of such approach has not been evaluated yet.
The target population included people aged between mid-twenties/mid-forties, from middle-income groups. Participants were recruited through an online market research panel, before and after each burst of the campaign (with a mean number of unique participants per each burst: 956.9 ± 170.2). Participants completed an online questionnaire evaluating knowledge [Mental Health Knowledge Schedule (MAKS)]; attitudes [Community Attitudes toward Mental Illness (CAMI)]; and behaviours [Reported and Intended Behaviour Scale (RIBS)]. Socio-demographic data and level of awareness of the SMC were also collected.
A total of 10,526 people were interviewed. An increasing usage of the SMC-media channels as well as of the level of awareness of SMC was found (P < 0.001). Being aware of the SMC was found to be associated with higher score at MAKS (OR = 0.95, CI = 0.68 to 1.21; P < 0.001), at ‘tolerance and support’ CAMI subscale (OR = 0.12, CI = 0.09 to 0.16; P < 0.001), and at RIBS (OR = 0.71, CI = 0.51 to 0.92; P < 0.001), controlling for confounders.
The SMC represents an important way to effectively reduce stigma. Taking into account these positive findings, further population-based campaigns using social media may represent an effective strategy to challenge stigma.
Affect theory and early modern texts face each other across a substantial divide. The period had a discourse on “the passions”; but passion was defined in cognitive terms, where affect is usually said to be like a vibration, an unconscious feeling, an intensity. This essay argues that there is an aspect of the discourse on passion that is hospitable to affect, and may even constitute the earliest trace of a theory of affect. It turns to rhetoric and poetics for an account of the communication of non-conceptual feeling. And it uses Gloucester’s line “I see it feelingly” in Lear to suggest that Shakespeare’s interest in the multiple resonances of “touch” or “feeling” represents an effort to think affectivity in ways not licensed by extant discourses on passion. Early modern drama is legible as an inventory of instances of affective transmission, conceptualized in ways that go beyond anything sayable in explicit theories of the passions.
Cardiac surgical interventions for children with trisomy 18 and trisomy 13 remain controversial, despite growing evidence that definitive cardiac repair prolongs survival. Understanding quality of life for survivors and their families therefore becomes crucial. Study objective was to generate a descriptive summary of parental perspectives on quality of life, family impact, functional status, and hopes for children with trisomy 18 and trisomy 13 who have undergone heart surgery.
A concurrent mixed method approach utilising PedsQL™ 4.0 Generic Core Parent Report for Toddlers or the PedsQL™ Infant Scale, PedsQL™ 2.0 Family Impact Module, Functional Status Scale, quality of life visual analogue scale, and narrative responses for 10 children whose families travelled out of state to access cardiac surgery denied to them in their home state due to genetic diagnoses.
Parents rated their child’s quality of life as 80/100, and their own quality of life as 78/100 using validated scales. Functional status was rated 11 by parents and 11.6 by providers (correlation 0.89). On quality of life visual analogue scale, all parents rated their child’s quality of life as “high” with mean response 92.7/100. Parental hopes were informed by realistic perspective on prognosis while striving to ensure their children had access to reaching their full potential. Qualitative analysis revealed a profound sense of the child’s relationality and valued life meaning.
Understanding parental motivations and perceptions on the child’s quality of life has potential to inform care teams in considering cardiac interventions for children with trisomy 18 and trisomy 13.
Language and communication are fundamental to the human experience, and, traditionally, spoken language is studied as an isolated skill. However, before propositional language (i.e., spontaneous, voluntary, novel speech) can be produced, propositional content or ‘ideas’ must be formulated.
This review highlights the role of broader cognitive processes, particularly ‘executive attention’, in the formulation of propositional content (i.e., ‘ideas’) for propositional language production.
Several key lines of evidence converge to suggest that the formulation of ideas for propositional language production draws on executive attentional processes. Larger-scale clinical research has demonstrated a link between attentional processes and language, while detailed case studies of neurological patients have elucidated specific idea formulation mechanisms relating to the generation, selection and sequencing of ideas for expression. Furthermore, executive attentional processes have been implicated in the generation of ideas for propositional language production. Finally, neuroimaging studies suggest that a widely distributed network of brain regions, including parts of the prefrontal and parietal cortices, supports propositional language production.
Theoretically driven experimental research studies investigating mechanisms involved in the formulation of ideas are lacking. We suggest that novel experimental approaches are needed to define the contribution of executive attentional processes to idea formulation, from which comprehensive models of spoken language production can be developed. Clinically, propositional language impairments should be considered in the context of broader executive attentional deficits.
The role of aromatherapy in supportive symptom management for pediatric patients receiving palliative care has been underexplored. This pilot study aimed to measure the impact of aromatherapy using validated child-reported nausea, pain, and mood scales 5 minutes and 60 minutes after aromatherapy exposure.
The 3 intervention arms included use of a symptom-specific aromatherapy sachet scent involving deep breathing. The parallel default control arm (for those children with medical exclusion criteria to aromatherapy) included use of a visual imagery picture envelope and deep breathing. Symptom burden was sequentially assessed at 5 and 60 minutes using the Baxter Retching Faces scale for nausea, the Wong-Baker FACES scale for pain, and the Children's Anxiety and Pain Scale (CAPS) for anxious mood. Ninety children or adolescents (mean age 9.4 years) at a free-standing children's hospital in the United States were included in each arm (total n = 180).
At 5 minutes, there was a mean improvement of 3/10 (standard deviation [SD] 2.21) on the nausea scale; 2.6/10 (SD 1.83) on the pain scale; and 1.6/5 (SD 0.93) on the mood scale for the aromatherapy cohort (p < 0.0001). Symptom burden remained improved at 60 minutes post-intervention (<0.0001). Visual imagery with deep breathing improved self-reports of symptoms but was not as consistently sustained at 60 minutes.
Significance of results
Aromatherapy represents an implementable supportive care intervention for pediatric patients receiving palliative care consults for symptom burden. The high number of children disqualified from the aromatherapy arm because of pulmonary or allergy indications warrants further attention to outcomes for additional breathing-based integrative modalities.
Understanding perceptions of family caregivers’ roles and responsibilities regarding their child with complex cardiac needs has potential to help care teams better support parents. Paternal experience has been under-explored in pediatric cardiac cohorts.
Ten fathers of children undergoing cardiac surgery completed quantitative surveys on their knowledge needs and preferred format of communication. In face-to-face recorded interviews, they responded to open-ended questions about the definition of being a good father to a child with a complex cardiac condition, perceived paternal responsibilities, personal growth as a parent to a child with a complex heart condition, support needs, and recommendations to medical staff for paternal inclusion. Semantic content analysis was utilised. The study reports strictly followed COnsolidated criteria for REporting Qualitative research guidelines.
The fathers reported high preference for knowledge about the child’s heart condition, communication about the treatment plan, and desire for inclusion in the care of their child. Paternal role was defined thematically as: providing a supportive presence, being there, offering bonded insight, serving as strong provider, and acting as an informed advocate. The fathers revealed that their responsibilities sometimes conflicted as they strove to serve as an emotional and economic stabiliser for their family, while also wanting to be foundationally present for their child perioperatively.
This study provides insight into paternal experience and strategies for paternal inclusion. This summary of the self-defined experience of the fathers of pediatric cardiac patients offers constructive and specific advice for medical teams.