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Dietary intake of ω-3 fatty acids has been associated with a decreased lower risk of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Abnormal phospholipids metabolism in the brain has been shown to play a role in the pathophysiology of major psychiatric diseases, such as schizophrenia, mood disorder. This study was conducted to determine whether essential polyunsaturated fatty acids (EPUFAs) levels in the erythrocyte membrane are correlate with severity of behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia (BPSD), as well as cognitive function, in subjects with AD.
The protocol was approved by the Institutional Review Board of the University of Toyama School of Medicine.
Thirty out-patients (male/female = 6/24) with AD (n = 23) or amnesic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI, n = 7) participated in the study. The Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) and the Neuropsychiatric Inventory (NPI) were administered to assess cognitive function and severity of BPSD respectively. Caregiver burden was assessed by the Neuropsychiatric Inventory Caregiver Distress Scale (NPI-D). Fatty acids levels were analyzed using a gas chromatography system.
Concentrations of EPUFAs and ω-3 fatty acids were positively correlated with MMSE score. Also, EPUFAs levels were negatively correlated with the NPI Global and caregiver scores. Specifically, EPUFAs levels predicted dysphoria, euphoria and apathy scores of NPI.
These results suggest that abnormal phospholipids metabolism provided a biological basis for BPSD and cognitive impairments of AD.
Postmortem and PET studies indicate increased serotonin (5-HT)-5-HT1A receptor density in frontal and temporal cortices in schizophrenia, suggesting up-regulation secondary to diminished 5-HT1A-receptor stimulation. We previously conducted a series of pilot studies of the effects of the addition of tandospirone, a 5-HT1A partial agonist and azapirone derivative, to ongoing treatment with small to moderate doses of typical antipsychotic drugs, on cognitive function in patients with schizophrenia. The addition of tandospirone (30 mg/day), but not placebo, for 4 to 6 weeks was found to improve executive function and verbal learning and memory.
Methods and Results:
We have conducted a randomly-assigned placebo-controlled double-blind study to investigate the ability of the addition of buspirone to enhance cognitive function in subjects with schizophrenia treated with atypical antipsychotic drugs (AAPDs). Buspirone, 30 mg/day, outperformed placebo in improving the performance on a measure of attention/speeded motor performance and index of general cognitive function. The distinct cognition-enhancing ability of buspirone suggests its usefulness for patients who have large deficits in attention in spite of treatment with AAPDs.
The findings from these clinical studies indicate 5-HT1A receptors are a promising target for the management of psychotic symptoms and cognitive disturbances of schizophrenia. This concept has prompted the development of novel antipsychotic compounds with agonist actions at 5-HT1A receptors, e.g. F156063, SLV313, SSR181507, and bifeprunox. Evidence from basic studies with these drugs suggests an optimal balance of activity at 5-HT1A and dopamine-D2 receptors is required to gain cognitive benefits, which deserves further investigations.
The risk for developing and preserving symptoms of anorexia nervosa (AN) in children seems to be multifactorial: individual, familial, socio-cultural, and biological factors interact within the developmental framework. A disruption of attachment processes with the mother in an early stage of child development has been proposed as a contributing factor; however, the evidence is controversial.
To address the research question of how childhood AN patients recognize disorder-specific provocative factors such as body type, high-calorie food, and attachment between mother and child.
The aim of this study was to investigate the prefrontal activation in childhood AN patients when imaging those symptom-provocative factors.
The prefrontal activations during each task, in terms of blood volume changes, were measured by near infrared spectroscopy. Twelve females with childhood AN (mean age, 14.4 years old) and 13 age-matched healthy female controls participated in this study.
Both groups showed increased prefrontal blood volume when viewing images of each symptom-provocative factor. Unexpectedly, there was no significant difference in the prefrontal blood volume increases between the control group and the childhood AN group when viewing images of slender and obese body types and high-calorie food. On the other hand, images of mother-child attachment resulted in significantly greater increases in prefrontal blood volume in the childhood AN group than in the control group.
These results indicated that prefrontal activation in AN might be associated with imaging attachment between mother and child, but not associated with imaging body type or high-calorie food.
Optical properties of infrared-bright (IR-bright) dust-obscured galaxies (DOGs) are reported. DOGs are faint in optical but very bright in mid-IR, which are powered by active star formation (SF) or active galactic nucleus (AGN), or both. The DOGs is a candidate population that are evolving from a gas-rich merger to a quasar. By combining three catalogs of optical (Subaru Hyper Suprime-Cam), near-IR (VIKING), and mid-IR (ALLWISE), we have discovered 571 IR-bright DOGs. Using their spectral energy distributions, we classified the selected DOGs into the SF-dominated DOGs and the AGN-dominated DOGs. We found that the SF-dominated DOGs show a redder optical color than the AGN-dominated DOGs. Interestingly, some DOGs shows extremely blue color in optical (blue-excess DOGs: bluDOGs). A possible origin for this blue excess is either the leaked AGN light or stellar UV light from nuclear starbursts. The BluDOGs may be in the transition phase from obscured AGNs to unobscured AGNs.
The number of tests performed is an important surveillance indicator. We illustrate this point using HIV surveillance data, focusing on Tokyo and Okinawa, two prefectures with high HIV notification rates in Japan. Restricting to data reported from local public health centres and affiliate centres where testing data are accessible, we assessed HIV surveillance data during 2007–2014, based on the annual HIV notification rate (per 100 000 population), HIV testing rate (per 100 000 population) and proportion testing HIV-positive (positivity). Nationally, testing activity and positivity showed an inverse relationship; in 2008, the testing rate peaked, but positivity was lowest. While notification rates were higher for Tokyo (median = 0.98, range = 0.89–1.33) than Okinawa (median = 0.61, range = 0.42–1.09), Okinawa had slightly higher testing rates (median = 187, range = 158–274) relative to Tokyo (median = 172, range = 163–210). Positivity was substantially lower in Okinawa (median = 0.34%, range = 0.24–0.45%) compared with Tokyo (median = 0.57%, range = 0.46–0.67%). Relative to the national testing rate (median = 85, range = 80–115) and positivity (median = 0.34%, range = 0.28–0.36%), Tokyo had higher positivity, despite more testing. In 2014 in Okinawa, all three indicators increased, providing a strong reason to be concerned as positivity increased despite more testing. Together with other information, accounting for testing and positivity improve interpretation of surveillance data to guide public health assessments.
The large scatter in Lyman-α opacity at z > 5.3 has been an ongoing mystery, prompting a flurry of numerical models. A uniform ultra-violet background has been ruled out at those redshifts, but it is unclear whether any proposed models produce sufficient inhomogeneities. In this paper we provide an update on the measurement which first highlighted the issue: Lyman-α effective optical depth along high-z quasar lines of sight. We nearly triple on the previous sample size in such a study thanks to the cooperation of the DES-VHS, SHELLQs, and SDSS collaborations as well as new reductions and spectra. We find that a uniform UVB model is ruled out at 5.1 < z < 5.3, as well as higher redshifts, which is perplexing. We provide the first such measurements at z ∼ 6. None of the numerical models we confronted to this data could reproduce the observed scatter.
The Fukushima Daiichi and Daini Nuclear Power Plant workers experienced multiple stressors as both victims and onsite workers after the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and subsequent nuclear accidents. Previous studies found that disaster-related exposures, including discrimination/slurs, were associated with their mental health. Their long-term impact has yet to be investigated.
A total of 968 plant workers (Daiichi, n = 571; Daini, n = 397) completed self-written questionnaires 2–3 months (time 1) and 14–15 months (time 2) after the disaster (response rate 55.0%). Sociodemographics, disaster-related experiences, and peritraumatic distress were assessed at time 1. At time 1 and time 2, general psychological distress (GPD) and post-traumatic stress response (PTSR) were measured, respectively, using the K6 scale and Impact of Event Scale Revised. We examined multivariate covariates of time 2 GPD and PTSR, adjusting for autocorrelations in the hierarchical multiple regression analyses.
Higher GPD at time 2 was predicted by higher GPD at time 1 (β = 0.491, p < 0.001) and discrimination/slurs experiences at time 1 (β = 0.065, p = 0.025, adjusted R2 = 0.24). Higher PTSR at time 2 was predicted with higher PTSR at time 1 (β = 0.548, p < 0.001), higher age (β = 0.085, p = 0.005), and discrimination/slurs experiences at time 1 (β = 0.079, p = 0.003, adjusted R2 = 0.36).
Higher GPD at time 2 was predicted by higher GPD and discrimination/slurs experience at time 1. Higher PTSR at time 2 was predicted by higher PTSR, higher age, and discrimination/slurs experience at time 1.
The mode of onset and the course of schizophrenia illness exhibit substantial individual variations. Previous studies have pointed out that the mode of onset affects the duration of untreated psychosis (DUP) and clinical outcomes, such as cognitive and social functioning. This study attempted to clarify the association between the DUP and clinical features, taking the different modes of onset into consideration, in a prospective longitudinal study examining patients with first-episode schizophrenia.
This study was conducted in six areas of Japan. Patients with first-episode schizophrenia were followed for over 18 months. Cognitive function, psychopathology, and social functioning were assessed at baseline and at 6, 12, and 18-month follow-up points.
We identified 168 patients and sufficient information was available to determine the DUP and the mode of onset for 156 patients (92.9%): 79 had an acute onset, and 77 had an insidious onset. The DUP was significantly associated with quality of life (QOL), social functioning, and cognitive function at most of the follow-up points in the insidious-onset group. The DUP and negative symptoms at baseline were significant predictors of cognitive function at the 18-month follow-up in the insidious-onset group.
The present results further support the hypothesis that the DUP affects QOL, social functioning, and cognitive function over the course of illness, especially in patients with an insidious onset. Effective strategies for detecting and caring for individuals with insidious onset early during the course of schizophrenia will be essential for achieving a full patient recovery.
Monitor of All-sky X-ray Image (MAXI) on board International Space Station is capable of
observing gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) and sending notices of GRBs or other transient events,
using real time connection to the ground. MAXI observed 32 GRBs or short X-ray transients
as of the end of September 2012. Among them, eleven events were simultaneously detected by
other satellites. The observed rate of the MAXI GRBs is about one event per month. This
rate is comparable to a past observation with larger effective area and larger field of
view. The fact indicates that MAXI has better sensitivity to observe GRBs because of low
background. The distribution of the spectral hardness of MAXI GRBs is similar to the
results of a past instrument, which is sensitive to similar energy range.
Chemical properties of AGNs and their redshift evolution are of interest to understand the star-formation history of AGN host galaxies and the co-evolution between galaxies and supermassive black holes (SMBHs). One important observational clue on this issue is a tight correlation between the AGN luminosity and the metallicity of the broad-line region. Surprisingly this relation shows no redshift evolution, even up to z ~ 6. This correlation is attributable mainly to the positive correlation between metallicity and SMBH mass, rather than to the relation between metallicity and Eddington ratio. A significant positive correlation between the metallicity and the AGN luminosity is also seen in narrow-line regions, not only in broad-line regions. Possible implications of these results on the galaxy–SMBH co-evolution are briefly mentioned.
We investigate the metallicity of the narrow line regions (NLRs) of high-z radio galaxies (HzRGs), using new deep optical spectra of 9 HzRGs obtained with FORS2 on VLT and data from the literature. To estimate the metallicity of NLRs we focus on the Civ/Heii and Ciii]/Civ flux ratios. Based on comparison between the observed emission-line flux ratios and the prediction of our photoionization model calculations, we find no significant metallicity evolution in NLRs of HzRGs, up to z ~ 4. We discuss the possibility that massive galaxies had almost completed the major epoch of the star formation in the very high-z universe (z > 5).
We consider the number of trophic levels in a food chain given by the
equilibrium state for a simple mathematical model with ordinary differential
equations which govern the temporal variation of the energy reserve in each
trophic level. When a new trophic level invades over the top of the chain,
the chain could lengthen by one trophic level.
We can derive the condition that such lengthening could
occur, and prove that the possibly longest chain is globally stable.
In some specific cases, we find that the possibly longest chain is such that
the lower trophic level has a greater energy reserve than the higher has,
so that the distribution of energy reserves can be regarded to have a
pyramid shape, whereas, if any of its trophic levels is removed, the pyramid
shape cannot be maintained.
Further, we find the condition that arbitrary long chain can be established.
In such unbounded case, we prove that any chain could not have
the pyramid shape of energy reserve distribution.
Prior to attempting the in vitro production of embryos in the Bryde's whale (Balaenoputera edeni), we investigated whether spermatozoa can retain the capacity for oocyte activation and pronucleus formation as well as chromosomal integrity under cryopreservation by using intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) into mouse oocytes. Regardless of motility and viability, whale spermatozoa efficiently led to the activation of mouse oocytes (90.3–97.4%), and sperm nuclei successfully transformed into male pronucleus within activated ooplasm (87.2–93.6%). Chromosome analysis at the first cleavage metaphase (M) of the hybrid zygotes revealed that a majority (95.2%) of motile spermatozoa had the normal chromosome complement, while the percentage of chromosomal normality was significantly reduced to 63.5% in immotile spermatozoa and 50.0% in dead spermatozoa due to the increase in structural chromosome aberrations. This is the first report showing that motile Bryde's whale spermatozoa are competent to support embryonic development.
Phase-change memory is promising because it has a simple structure and has scalability that originates from its unique operating mechanism. However, the programming current should be reduced in accordance with the scaling of cell size [1,2]. We previously reported PCM (Phase Change Memory) cells that operate under 1.5-V/100-μA writing pulses [3, 4]. This PCM had a cell structure composed of 180-nm-W (tungsten) bottom contact to an O-GST (Oxygen-doped GeSbTe) film. Its low-power characteristic is suitable for 0.13-μm generation embedded applications. In the present study, we introduced a new W/O-GST/TaO/W cell structure and found further decrease of programming current the improved stability in the fabrication process. We analyzed the mechanism by which oxygen in GST and the additional TaO layer reduce the power consumption during SET/RESET operations.
Objective: The aim of this study is to evaluate the validity and the utility of the Japanese version of the WHO-Five Well-Being Index (WHO-5-J) in the context of detecting suicidal ideation in elderly community residents.
Methods: A sample of 696 subjects aged 70 years or over who completed a set of questionnaires was examined.
Results: Cronbach's α was 0.87 and Loevinger's coefficient was 0.64. The total score was significantly correlated with the number of cohabitants, the number of physical illnesses, physical functioning, instrumental activities of daily living, and depressive symptoms. Subjects with suicidal ideation had significantly lower scores on the WHO-5-J. The receiver-operating characteristic curve analysis indicated that the scale significantly discriminated the subjects with suicidal ideation. When combined with the assessment of a lack of perceived social support (PSS), a standard cut-off criterion of “a total score ≤ 12 or answering 0 or 1 to any of the five items” more appropriately identified elderly subjects with suicidal ideation: sensitivity = 87%, specificity = 75%, negative predictive value = 99%, and positive predictive value = 10%.
Conclusions: In combination with PSS, the scale has predictive utility to detect suicidal ideation in elderly community residents.
A new micro-X-ray flourescence (XRF) instrument was developed in combination with an atomic force microscope (AFM). A small pinhole of 5 or 10 μm was made on the AFM cantilever. The center of the micro-X-ray beam generated by a polycapillary X-ray lens was passed through the pinhole. The present experiment demonstrated that the size of the original X-ray beam of 48 μm produced by the polycapillary lens was reduced to about 10 μm. This instrument enables both observation of the surface morphology by the AFM and elemental analysis by micro-XRF.
Background and objective: Phosphodiesterase-III inhibitors and dobutamine effectively improve cardiac function in patients with cardiac failure, but they are limited by possible hypotensive effects. We tested the hypothesis that dopamine contributes to stabilizing milrinone-induced haemodynamic changes.
Methods: Nine patients undergoing major surgery were anaesthetized using nitrous oxide and oxygen supplemented with isoflurane 1–2%. After baseline haemodynamics were recorded, milrinone (25 or 50 μg kg−1) was administered over 10 min, followed by a continuous infusion (0.5 μg kg−1 min−1). The second set of haemodynamic values was measured 50 min after beginning the continuous infusion of milrinone. Dopamine (4 μg kg−1 min−1) was then administered with milrinone.
Results: Milrinone significantly increased the heart rate from 81 ± 8 to 102 ± 16 beats min−1, but it decreased the mean arterial pressure from 83 ± 10 to 66 ± 10 mmHg and systemic vascular resistance (P < 0.05 for each). The pulmonary capillary wedge pressure, cardiac index and pulmonary vascular resistance did not change significantly. The addition of dopamine to the milrinone infusion significantly decreased the heart rate (94 ± 12 beats min−1) and increased the mean arterial pressure (82 ± 11 mmHg). Dopamine and milrinone, but not milrinone alone, significantly increased the cardiac index and the rate–pressure product.
Conclusions: The combination regimen of milrinone and dopamine improved cardiac function, and changes in heart rate and mean arterial pressure induced by milrinone were attenuated by dopamine. The results suggest that a combination regimen of milrinone and dopamine rather than milrinone alone should be used to maintain arterial pressure.
The behaviour of dioxin in several arc furnaces was studied in detail in relation with the
specifications for various types of organic and inorganic gas. After a pilot plant study has
been carried out to know the effect of secondary combustion and rapid cooling on the reduction of
dioxin in the arc fumace, ways to lower dioxin below regulation levels were proposed. To
understand the reactions, laboratory studies and thermodynamic calculations have been done.