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Background: Highly educated participants with normal cognition show lower incidence of Alzheimer's disease (AD) than poorly educated participants, whereas longitudinal studies involving AD have reported that higher education is associated with more rapid cognitive decline. We aimed to evaluate whether highly educated amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI) participants show more rapid cognitive decline than those with lower levels of education.
Methods: A total of 249 aMCI patients enrolled from 31 memory clinics using the standard assessment and diagnostic processes were followed with neuropsychological evaluation (duration 17.2 ± 8.8 months). According to baseline performances on memory tests, participants were divided into early-stage aMCI (−1.5 to −1.0 standard deviation (SD)) and late-stage aMCI (below −1.5 SD) groups. Risk of AD conversion and changes in neuropsychological performances according to the level of education were evaluated.
Results: Sixty-two patients converted to AD over a mean follow-up of 1.43 years. The risk of AD conversion was higher in late-stage aMCI than early-stage aMCI. Cox proportional hazard models showed that aMCI participants, and late-stage aMCI participants in particular, with higher levels of education had a higher risk of AD conversion than those with lower levels of education. Late-stage aMCI participants with higher education showed faster cognitive decline in language, memory, and Clinical Dementia Rating Sum of Boxes (CDR-SOB) scores. On the contrary, early-stage aMCI participants with higher education showed slower cognitive decline in MMSE and CDR-SOB scores.
Conclusions: Our findings suggest that the protective effects of education against cognitive decline remain in early-stage aMCI and disappear in late-stage aMCI.
Although many environmental justice studies have examined disproportionate environmental burdens imposed on impoverished and minority neighborhoods, locational disparities of brownfields in terms of racial and socioeconomic factors have been underexplored. This study is assessed current racial and socioeconomic disparities at brownfield locations in the Detroit region, and we discuss why racial and socioeconomic disparities of brownfield locations exist. This study combines the locations of brownfields provided by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality with 2000 United States census data and the census block group as the unit of analysis. Results indicate that brownfields are disproportionately located in impoverished and minority neighborhoods. In addition, race is independently associated with brownfield locations. Connections among deindustrialization, concentration of poverty, and residential segregation can offer an explanation of why locational disparities of brownfields exist. Future studies should examine why racial and socioeconomic disparities exist at brownfield locations.
This study examined the degradation of the device performance of InGaZnO4 (IGZO)-based thin-film transistors after annealing at high temperatures in air ambient. Using various characterization methods including scanning electron microscopy, x-ray diffraction, and transmission electron microscopy, we were able to disclose the details of a two-stage phase transformation that led to the device performance degradation. The Mo electrodes first succumbed to oxidation at moderate temperatures (400∼500 °C) and then the Mo oxide further reacted with IGZO to produce an In–Mo–O compound with some Ga at higher temperatures (600∼700 °C). We analyzed our results based on the thermodynamics and kinetics data available in the literature and confirmed that our findings are in agreement with the experimental results.
Organic thin-film transistors (OTFTs) are considered indispensable in applications requiring flexibility, large area, low processing temperature, and low cost. Key challenges to be addressed include developing solution-processable gate dielectric materials that form uniform films over large areas and exhibit excellent insulating properties, reducing contact resistance at interfaces between organic semiconductors and electrodes, and optimizing the patterning of organic semiconductors. High-performance pentacene-based OTFTs have been reported with polymeric gate dielectrics and indium tin oxide source/drain electrodes. Using such OTFT backplates, a 15-in. 1024 X 768 pixel full-color active-matrix liquid-crystal display (AMLCD) and a 4.5-in. 192 X64 pixel active-matrix organic light-emitting diode (AMOLED) have been fabricated.
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