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Bipolar disorder (BD) is a familial psychiatric disorder associated with frontotemporal and subcortical brain abnormalities. It is unclear whether such abnormalities are present in relatives without BD, and little is known about structural brain trajectories in those at risk.
Neuroimaging was conducted at baseline and at 2-year follow-up interval in 90 high-risk individuals with a first-degree BD relative (HR), and 56 participants with no family history of mental illness who could have non-BD diagnoses. All 146 subjects were aged 12–30 years at baseline. We examined longitudinal change in gray and white matter volume, cortical thickness, and surface area in the frontotemporal cortex and subcortical regions.
Compared to controls, HR participants showed accelerated cortical thinning and volume reduction in right lateralised frontal regions, including the inferior frontal gyrus, lateral orbitofrontal cortex, frontal pole and rostral middle frontal gyrus. Independent of time, the HR group had greater cortical thickness in the left caudal anterior cingulate cortex, larger volume in the right medial orbitofrontal cortex and greater area of right accumbens, compared to controls. This pattern was evident even in those without the new onset of psychopathology during the inter-scan interval.
This study suggests that differences previously observed in BD are developing prior to the onset of the disorder. The pattern of pathological acceleration of cortical thinning is likely consistent with a disturbance of molecular mechanisms responsible for normal cortical thinning. We also demonstrate that neuroanatomical differences in HR individuals may be progressive in some regions and stable in others.
The aim of the current study is to compare Seniors in the Community: Risk Evaluation for Eating and Nutrition, version II (SCREEN II) and Mini Nutritional Assessment – Short Form (MNA-SF), where each is used to identify nutritional risk prevalence among community-dwelling people aged 65 years and above in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
A cross-sectional study. Nutritional risk assessed using the nutritionist’s risk rating, anthropometric measurements, functional indicators, cognitive parameters, SCREEN II and MNA-SF.
The municipalities of Foca, East Sarajevo and Bijeljina, Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Eight hundred twenty-one community-dwelling individuals aged ≥65 years.
The prevalence of high nutritional risk per nutritionist’s risk rating, SCREEN II and MNA-SF was 26, 60, and 7 %, respectively. With the nutritionist’s rating score ≥5 as the criterion, the MNA-SF cut-off point of ≤11 (indicating any possible risk) had poor sensitivity (55·7 %), specificity (46·6 %) and AUC (0·563; P = 0·024). When the criterion of >7 was applied, good sensitivity (95·3 %) and specificity (88·9 %) were obtained for the MNA-SF cut-off score of ≤7. AUC for this comparison was 0·742 (considered fair). Cut-off points of <54 (AUC = 0·816) and <50 (AUC = 0·881) for SCREEN II (indicating moderate to high risk) corresponded with good sensitivity (82·2 %; 80·9 %) and fair specificity (72·1 %; 75·0 %).
MNA-SF may have a limited role in nutritional risk screening among community-dwelling seniors in Bosnia and Herzegovina. SCREEN II has promising results in regard to validity, but further studies are warranted.
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is recently recognized as a risk factor for hypopituitarism, presented most frequently with growth hormone deficiency (GHD). GHD is associated not only with changes in body composition, but also with impaired quality of life, cognitive dysfunctions and some psychiatric sequelae, usually classified as “depression” or “atypical depression”. The impact of GH therapy on mental status is still unknown.
Psychiatric and cognitive functions were tested in six adult GHD subjects at baseline (minimum three years after TBI), reassessed after six months of GH replacement therapy as well as twelve months after discontinuation of GH therapy. Psychiatric and cognitive examinations included semi-structured interviews and three instruments: Symptom-checklist (SCL-90-R), Zung Depression Inventory and standard composite neuropsychological battery.
Six months of GH therapy in GHD TBI patients improved cognitive abilities (particularly verbal and nonverbal memory) and improved psychiatric functioning. Severity of depression decreased, as well as intensity of interpersonal sensitivity, hostility, paranoid ideation, anxiety and psychoticism. In three GHD patients who stopped GH therapy for twelve months we registered worsening of the verbal and nonverbal memory, as well as increase in Zung score and three SCL dimensions: inter-personal sensitivity, anxiety and paranoid ideation.
This preliminary data suggest that GH therapy induced reduction of depression, social dysfunction and improvement in certain cognitive domains in GHD patients after TBI. Our data support the necessity of conducting randomized placebo-controlled trials on the effects of GH therapy on neuropsychological and psychiatric status in GHD TBI patients.
Although there is no consensus regarding the definition of personality, personality psychology is getting near to understanding that personality traits can be summed up into five basic dimensions. Five factor personality model consists of these five basic dimensions: neuroticism, extraversion/introversion, openness to experience, agreeableness and conscientiousness.
Of this research was to establish in what manner certain personality traits of patients suffering from schizophrenia and depression and healthy individuals, influence their sexual satisfaction.
Participants and methods:
This research was conducted on 100 patients suffering from schizophrenia, 100 patients suffering from depression and 100 healthy individuals. Instruments used in this research were: five factor personality questionnaire and sexual experience scale (Arizona).
Among patients suffering from schizophrenia, sexual drive and easier sexual arousal were linked to higher extraversion, openness to experience, agreeableness and conscientiousness and to lower neuroticism. among patients suffering from depression, smaller number and less pronounced sexual dysfunctions were linked to higher extraversion, openness to experience and conscientiousness, and also to lower neuroticism. among healthy individuals, higher extraversion is linked to easier sexual arousal and higher neuroticism to lower orgasm satisfaction.
Personality traits have a significant influence on sexual satisfaction of patients suffering from depression and patients suffering from schizophrenia, but also of healthy individuals.
To assess the severity of anxiety as state and as trait, depressiveness and posttraumatic stress symptoms (PTSS) of adolescents after artificial abortion up to 12th week of pregnancy.
The study was carried out in Tuzla Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BH). We assessed 120 female adolescents aged 17.7 ± 1.5 years for trauma experiences, presence of posttraumatic stress symptoms (PTSD Questionnaire), depression (Beck's Depression Inventory - BDI) and anxiety as state, and anxiety as trait (STAI - Form Y). Sixty adolescents had intentional artificial abortion and 60 had no abortion.
Adolescents who aborted pregnancy presented significantly more severe depressiveness (mean ± standard deviation=39.2 ± 16.1) than adolescents who did not abort (17 ± 12.9; F = 69.249, P < 0.001, ANOVA). Anxiety as state (mean ± standard deviation=4.2 ± 0.95) and as trait (4.2 ± 3.4) was significantly higher in abortion group than in non-abortion group (3.2 ± 1.1, F = 27.749, P< 0.001; 3.4 ± 1.1, F = 17.033, P< 0.001,ANOVA, respectively). There were no significant differences in severity of PTSS amongst adolescents who aborted pregnancy ((mean ± standard deviation=34.3 ± 23.7), than adolescents who did not abort (27.1 ± 16.7, F = 3.856, P = 0.052, ANOVA).
Adolescents who aborted pregnancy presented significantly more severe intensity of depressiveness and significantly more severe anxiety as state and trait than those who did not abort, but there were no differences in severity of PTS symptoms in abortion and no abortion group of adolescents.
Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is effective method of resistant depression treatment. ECT activates neurotransmitter systems, increases neurotrophic factors production, induces neurogenesis. Nevertheless, ECT side effects, expressed as temporary amnesia, limit its application in clinical practice.
The objective of our work was to estimate rat's memory after ECT in the behavioral test: “Object recognition”, “Morris water-maze”.
The aim of the work was to research the effect of ECT on cognitive function in rats with depressive-like disorder and in normal rats.
The research was conducted with Sprague-Dawley rats (n = 41, 2 month age). Experimental stages:
– control group (n = 10) compared to control + ECT group ([70 mA, 50 Hz, 500 μsec; 10 days] n = 10);
– control group (n = 9) compared to group with depressive-like disorder, formed by ultrasound ([20–45 kHz; 21days] US, n = 6) and group with depressive-like disorder received ECT (n = 6).
Memory was estimated in the “Object recognition” and “Morris water-maze” tests.
(1) ECT did not decrease cognitive function in the “Object recognition” test in normal rats (P = 0.1217). Also, it did not lead to cognitive impairments in the “Morris water-maze” test: time of platform searching did not differ significantly from the control group (P = 0.8573).
(2) ECT produced recovering effect on memory impairments of the US group in the “Object recognition” test (P = 0.0066). In the “Morris water-maze” ECT decreased time of platform searching by 7 times compared to the US group (P = 0.0025). That demonstrates the absence of ECT negative effect on rat's memory.
ECT does not produce negative effect on cognitive function in rats with depressive-like disorder and even recovers memory impairments.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
Improved insight level among schizophrenia patients is predictive for better illness prognosis.
Explore factors connected to insight.
Evaluate the insight level and clinical characteristics of first time hospitalized schizophrenia spectrum patients.
All consecutive first time hospitalized schizophrenia spectrum patients in a psychiatric hospital from 01.01.2016–26.09.2016. Patients were interviewed upon hospitalization and at the discharge with Scale for the assessment of positive symptoms (SAPS) and negative symptoms (SANS), Schedule of assessment of insight-extended (SAI-E), The Calgary depression scale for schizophrenia (C-sch), sociodemographic and clinical data were collected. All participants signed written informed consent and the study was approved by the Riga Stradins University Ethics committee.
From 45 first episode patients, 38 met the inclusion criteria. Mean age was 37.66 years (SD: 11.48 years), the average duration of untreated illness (DUI) was 40.5 months (SD: 57.35 months). Psychopathologic symptoms and insight levels evaluated in scores in the 1st and 2nd interviews were as follows: SAPS 69.11 (SD: 20.78) and 33.61 (SD: 18.04), SANS 63.21 (SD: 25.30) and 40.95 (SD: 24.47), SAI-E 15.50 and 27.24 (SD: 13.24), P < 0.001, C-sch 8.50 (SD: 5.31) and 4.27 (SD: 2.86), P < 0.05. There was no statistically significant correlation between DUI and insight level. A higher level of insight at hospitalization correlated with higher levels of depression: r = 0.569, P < 0.001.
We noticed a tendency that lower insight levels might correlate with longer periods of untreated illness. We found that higher insight levels correlated with higher symptoms of depression.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
The horticultural industry is an important source of invasive ornamental plant species, which is part of the motivation for an increased emphasis on using native alternatives. We were interested in the possibility that plants marketed in the midwestern United States as the native Celastrus scandens, or American bittersweet, were actually the difficult-to-distinguish invasive Celastrus orbiculatus (oriental bittersweet) or hybrids of the two species. We used nuclear microsatellite DNA loci to compare the genetic identities of 34 plants from 11 vendors with reference plants from wild populations of known species identity. We found that 18 samples (53%) were mislabeled, and 7 of the 11 vendors sold mislabeled plants. Mislabeled plants were more likely to be purchased through Internet or phone order shipments and were significantly less expensive than accurately labeled plants. Vendors marketed mislabeled plants under five different cultivar names, as well as unnamed strains. Additionally, the most common native cultivar, ‘Autumn Revolution,’ displays reproductive characteristics that diverge from the typical C. scandens, which could be of some concern. The lower price and abundance of mislabeled invasive plants introduces incentives for consumers to unknowingly contribute to the spread of C. orbiculatus. Revealing the potential sources of C. orbiculatus is critical for controlling further spread of the invasive vine and limiting its impact on C. scandens populations.
The IAU Commission 4 Working Group on Standardizing Access to Ephemerides recommends the use of the Spacecraft and Planet Kernel (SPK) format to provide a uniform format for the position ephemerides of planets and other natural solar system bodies, and the use of the Planetary Constants Kernel (PCK) for the orientation of these bodies. These formats are used by the SPICE system, developed by the Navigation and Ancillary Information Facility of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The working group's final report is currently undergoing final preparations for publication. A long version of this report will be available at the IAU Commission 4: Ephemerides (or its successor) web site. This long version will contain a full description of that portion of the SPK and PCK formats required to duplicate these file types for this application.
Competitive interactions between native plants and nonnative, invasive plant species have been extensively studied; however, within degraded landscapes, the effect of interspecific interactions among invasive plants is less explored. We investigated a competitive interaction between two sympatric, invasive mustard species that have similar life history strategies and growth forms: garlic mustard and damesrocket. Greenhouse experiments using a full range of reciprocal density ratios were conducted to investigate interspecific competition. Garlic mustard had a negative effect on the final biomass, number of leaves, and relative growth rate in height of damesrocket. Survival of damesrocket was not negatively affected by interspecific competition with garlic mustard; however, garlic mustard showed higher mortality because of intraspecific competition. These results indicated that although garlic mustard has been observed to be the dominant species in this landscape, it may not completely outcompete damesrocket in all situations. Studies of invasive species in competition are important in degraded landscapes because this is the common situation in many natural areas.
The interaction of Ti:sapphire laser, operating at high repetition rate of 75 MHz, with nickel-based super-alloy Inconel 600 was studied. The laser was emitting at 800 nm and ultrashort pulse duration was 160 fs. Nickel-based super-alloy surface modification was studied in a low laser energy/fluence regime of maximum 20 nJ–15 mJ/cm2, for short (10 s) and long irradiation times (range of minutes). Surface damage threshold of this material was estimated to be 1.46 nJ, i.e., 0.001 J/cm2 in air. The radiation absorbed from Ti:sapphire laser beam under these conditions generates at the surface a series of effects, such as direct material vaporization, plasma creation, formation of nano-structures and their larger aggregates, damage accumulation, etc. Laser induced surface morphological changes observed on Inconel 600 were: (1) intensive removal of surface material with crater like features; (2) material deposition at near and farther periphery and creation of nano-aggregates/nano-structures; (3) sporadic micro-cracking of the inner and outer damage area. Generally, features created on nickel-based super-alloy surface by high repetition rate femtosecond pulses are characterized by low inner/outer damage diameter of less than 11 µm/30 µm and relatively large depth on the order of 150 µm, in both low (10 s) and high (minutes) irradiation time regimes.
Cross-sectional research has demonstrated poorer function and health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in those with multiple sclerosis (MS) but less is known about change over time. The goals of this study were to measure change in HRQOL and identify factors associated with change.
HRQOL was assessed at baseline and annually over two subsequent years using the Multiple Sclerosis Quality of Life Inventory. Function was assessed using the Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) and the Multiple Sclerosis Functional Composite. Annualized rate of change was calculated for all twenty outcomes. Mixed effects modeling (univariate followed by multivariate) was used to examine the associations among patient characteristics and the age- and sex-adjusted Physical Component Summary (PCS) and Mental Component Summary (MCS) at study initiation and over the two years of follow-up.
Of 300 participants, 288 (96%) provided at least one assessment and are included in this analysis. Although 14 of the 20 outcomes showed a mean decline, only two (SF-36 physical function, p=0.018 and the EDSS, p<0.001) were statistically significant. The SF-36 social function showed a significant improvement (p=0.031). Only two variables were significantly associated with a decreased rate of decline or improvement over two years, including being female (PCS, p=0.001) and use of visiting nurse services (MCS, p<0.001).
HRQOL is relatively stable over two years of follow-up, particularly for mentally-oriented outcomes. Further research with a longer period of follow-up is needed to provide additional insight into factors associated with change in HRQOL in patients with MS.
Eleven woolly mammoth bone samples from Lugovskoe (central West Siberian Plain, Russia) were radiocarbon dated in 3 laboratories: Institute of Geology, Novosibirsk; Oxford University, Oxford; and Christian Albrechts University, Kiel. Each laboratory used its own protocol for collagen extraction. Parallel dating was carried out on 3 samples in Novosibirsk and Oxford. Two results are in good agreement. However, there is a major discrepancy between 2 dates obtained for the third sample. The dates obtained so far on the Lugovskoe mammoths range from about 18,250 BP to about 10,210 BP. The Lugovskoe results thus far confirm the possibility of woolly mammoth survival south of Arctic Siberia in the Late Glacial after about 12,000 BP, which has important implications for interpreting the process of mammoth extinction. The site has also produced the first reliable traces of human occupation from central Western Siberia at the Late Glacial, including unique direct evidence of mammoth hunting.
Properties of the thermal radiation emitted by neutron stars (NSs) are determined by thin plasma layers (atmospheres) at their surfaces. The NS atmospheres are very different from those of usual stars due to the immense gravity and huge magnetic fields. Current models of hydrogen NS atmospheres show that the spectra deviate substantially from blackbody spectra of the same temperatures. Comparison of the model spectra with recent observations of soft X-ray and UV-optical radiation of NSs yields the surface temperatures considerably lower than those obtained from the blackbody fits. This conclusion have important implications for theories of NS cooling and for understanding fundamental properties of the superdense matter in the NS interiors.
Deep levels studies on a set of n-GaN films grown by MOCVD and HVPE reveal the presence of electron traps with levels near Ec−0.25 eV, Ec−0.55 eV, Ec−0.8 eV, Ec−1 eV, hole traps with levels near Ev+0.9 eV and a band of relatively shallow states in the lower half of the bandgap. The total density of these latter states was estimated to be some 1016 cm−3 and they were tentatively associated with dislocations in GaN based on their high concentration and band-like character. None of the electron or hole traps could be unambiguously related with strong changes of diffusion lengths of minority carriers in various samples. It is proposed that such changes occur due to different surface recombination velocities. An important role of Ec−0.55 eV traps in persistent photoconductivity phenomena in n-GaN has been demonstrated.
The degree of polarization of thermal radiation from a neutron star depends on photon energy, surface temperature and magnetic field, and it oscillates with the star rotation period. Observations of this polarization provide a new tool for investigating properties of these objects.
The analysis of thermal radiation emitted from the atmospheres of isolated neutron stars allows one to measure their surface temperatures, magnetic fields, masses, and radii, as well as the chemical composition of their atmospheres. Thus, multiwavelength observations of this radiation provide an important tool for studying the structure and evolution of neutron stars and for elucidating properties of the superdense matter in their interiors. We describe recent theoretical and observational results on thermal radiation from radio pulsars and radio-quiet neutron stars and discuss their astrophysical implications.