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Studying phenotypic and genetic characteristics of age at onset (AAO) and polarity at onset (PAO) in bipolar disorder can provide new insights into disease pathology and facilitate the development of screening tools.
To examine the genetic architecture of AAO and PAO and their association with bipolar disorder disease characteristics.
Genome-wide association studies (GWASs) and polygenic score (PGS) analyses of AAO (n = 12 977) and PAO (n = 6773) were conducted in patients with bipolar disorder from 34 cohorts and a replication sample (n = 2237). The association of onset with disease characteristics was investigated in two of these cohorts.
Earlier AAO was associated with a higher probability of psychotic symptoms, suicidality, lower educational attainment, not living together and fewer episodes. Depressive onset correlated with suicidality and manic onset correlated with delusions and manic episodes. Systematic differences in AAO between cohorts and continents of origin were observed. This was also reflected in single-nucleotide variant-based heritability estimates, with higher heritabilities for stricter onset definitions. Increased PGS for autism spectrum disorder (β = −0.34 years, s.e. = 0.08), major depression (β = −0.34 years, s.e. = 0.08), schizophrenia (β = −0.39 years, s.e. = 0.08), and educational attainment (β = −0.31 years, s.e. = 0.08) were associated with an earlier AAO. The AAO GWAS identified one significant locus, but this finding did not replicate. Neither GWAS nor PGS analyses yielded significant associations with PAO.
AAO and PAO are associated with indicators of bipolar disorder severity. Individuals with an earlier onset show an increased polygenic liability for a broad spectrum of psychiatric traits. Systematic differences in AAO across cohorts, continents and phenotype definitions introduce significant heterogeneity, affecting analyses.
On Hawai‘i Island, an increase in human neuroangiostrongyliasis cases has been primarily associated with the accidental ingestion of Angiostrongylus cantonensis L3 in snails or slugs, or potentially, from larvae left behind in the slug's slime or feces. We evaluated more than 40 different treatments in vitro for their ability to kill A. cantonensis larvae with the goal of identifying a safe and effective fruit and vegetable wash in order to reduce the risk of exposure. Our evaluation of treatment lethality was carried out in two phases; initially using motility as an indicator of larval survival after treatment, followed by the development and application of a propidium iodide staining assay to document larval mortality. Treatments tested included common household products, consumer vegetable washes and agricultural crop washes. We found minimal larvicidal efficacy among consumer-grade fruit and vegetable washes, nor among botanical extracts such as those from ginger or garlic, nor acid solutions such as vinegar. Alkaline solutions, on the other hand, as well as oxidizers such as bleach and chlorine dioxide, did show larvicidal potential. Surfactants, a frequent ingredient in detergents that lowers surface tension, had variable results, but dodecylbenzene sulfonic acid as a 70% w/w solution in 2-propanol was very effective, both in terms of the speed and the thoroughness with which it killed A. cantonensis L3 nematodes. Thus, our results suggest promising directions for future investigation.
Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) TL1 trainees and KL2 scholars were surveyed to determine the immediate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on training and career development. The most negative impact was lack of access to research facilities, clinics, and human subjects, plus for KL2 scholars lack of access to team members and need for homeschooling. TL1 trainees reported having more time to think and write. Common strategies to maintain research productivity involved time management, virtual connections with colleagues, and shifting to research activities not requiring laboratory/clinic settings. Strategies for mitigating the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on training and career development are described.
This chapter examines the role of electoral quotes in expanding women’s political representation in three Arab Spring countries: Egypt, Jordan, and Tunisia. Drawing on Mona Lisa Krook’s tripartite framework for assessing quota efficacy – focused on how the quota fits within systems, practices, and norms – it suggests general insights that can be drawn from these stories. A key variable, the chapter suggests, is the extent to which the political institution in which the women are participating is itself dysfunctional.
Explores the history of women’s participation in constitution-making in Liberia, and outlines the strategies women have adopted to have their aspirations for constitutional equality heard. Written from the author’s experience as an advisor on constitutional amendment and constitutional reform processes in Liberia, the chapter reflects upon the lessons drawn from this experience for women’s engagement in constitution-making. It explains the importance of a ‘dialogic’ approach, in which all voices contribute to the ultimate outcome. This goal, Williams explains, not only requires the participation of women, it also requires explicit attention to designing the types of processes that will encourage openness in participation. These processes are contextualised in the history of Liberia, its complex ethnic, religious and social demographics, and its experience of conflict. The dialogic approach, it concludes, offers a hope of real participation for women in one of the most fundamental of social decisions: the adoption or amendment of a constitution.
This study examined the impact of the middle school transition on general anxiety trajectories from middle childhood to middle adolescence, as well as how youths’ individual vulnerability and exposure to contextual stressors were associated with anxiety trajectories. Participants were 631 youth (47% boys, M age = 7.96 years at Time 1), followed for 7 successive years from second to eighth grade. Teachers reported on youths’ individual vulnerability to anxiety (anxious solitude) in second grade; youth reported on their anxiety in second to eighth grade and aspects of their social contexts particularly relevant to the school transition (school hassles, peer victimization, parent–child relationship quality, and friendship quality) in sixth to eighth grade. The results revealed two subgroups that showed either strongly increasing (5%) or decreasing (14%) levels of anxiety across the transition and two subgroups with fairly stable levels of either high (11%) or low (70%) anxiety over time. Youth in the latter two subgroups could be distinguished based on their individual vulnerability to anxiety, whereas youth with increasing anxiety reported more contextual stressors and less contextual support than youth with decreasing anxiety. In sum, findings suggest that the middle school transition has the potential to alter developmental trajectories of anxiety for some youth, for better or for worse.
We have previously shown that the minor alleles of vascular endothelial growth factor A (VEGFA) single-nucleotide polymorphism rs833069 and superoxide dismutase 2 (SOD2) single-nucleotide polymorphism rs2758331 are both associated with improved transplant-free survival after surgery for CHD in infants, but the underlying mechanisms are unknown. We hypothesised that one or both of these minor alleles are associated with better systemic ventricular function, resulting in improved survival.
This study is a follow-up analysis of 422 non-syndromic CHD patients who underwent neonatal cardiac surgery with cardiopulmonary bypass. Echocardiographic reports were reviewed. Systemic ventricular function was subjectively categorised as normal, or as mildly, moderately, or severely depressed. The change in function was calculated as the change from the preoperative study to the last available study. Stepwise linear regression, adjusting for covariates, was performed for the outcome of change in ventricular function. Model comparison was performed using Akaike’s information criterion. Only variables that improved the model prediction of change in systemic ventricular function were retained in the final model.
Genetic and echocardiographic data were available for 335/422 subjects (79%). Of them, 33 (9.9%) developed worse systemic ventricular function during a mean follow-up period of 13.5 years. After covariate adjustment, the presence of the VEGFA minor allele was associated with preserved ventricular function (p=0.011).
These data support the hypothesis that the mechanism by which the VEGFA single-nucleotide polymorphism rs833069 minor allele improves survival may be the preservation of ventricular function. Further studies are needed to validate this genotype–phenotype association and to determine whether this mechanism is related to increased vascular endothelial growth factor production.
Reports of bloodstream infections caused by methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus among chronic hemodialysis patients to 2 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention surveillance systems (National Healthcare Safety Network Dialysis Event and Emerging Infections Program) were compared to evaluate completeness of reporting. Many methicillin-resistant S. aureus bloodstream infections identified in hospitals were not reported to National Healthcare Safety Network Dialysis Event.
Infect. Control Hosp. Epidemiol. 2016;37(2):205–207