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The degree to which suicide risk aggregates in US families is unknown. The authors aimed to determine the familial risk of suicide in Utah, and tested whether familial risk varies based on the characteristics of the suicides and their relatives.
A population-based sample of 12 160 suicides from 1904 to 2014 were identified from the Utah Population Database and matched 1:5 to controls based on sex and age using at-risk sampling. All first through third- and fifth-degree relatives of suicide probands and controls were identified (N = 13 480 122). The familial risk of suicide was estimated based on hazard ratios (HR) from an unsupervised Cox regression model in a unified framework. Moderation by sex of the proband or relative and age of the proband at time of suicide (<25 v. ⩾25 years) was examined.
Significantly elevated HRs were observed in first- (HR 3.45; 95% CI 3.12–3.82) through fifth-degree relatives (HR 1.07; 95% CI 1.02–1.12) of suicide probands. Among first-degree relatives of female suicide probands, the HR of suicide was 6.99 (95% CI 3.99–12.25) in mothers, 6.39 in sisters (95% CI 3.78–10.82), and 5.65 (95% CI 3.38–9.44) in daughters. The HR in first-degree relatives of suicide probands under 25 years at death was 4.29 (95% CI 3.49–5.26).
Elevated familial suicide risk in relatives of female and younger suicide probands suggests that there are unique risk groups to which prevention efforts should be directed – namely suicidal young adults and women with a strong family history of suicide.
Experimental studies suggest that abnormal levels of Ca, Mg and phosphorus are implicated in pancreatic carcinogenesis. We investigated the associations between intakes of these minerals and the risk of pancreatic cancer in a case-control study conducted in 1994–1998. Cases of pancreatic cancer (n 150) were recruited from all hospitals in the metropolitan area of the Twin Cities and Mayo Clinic, Minnesota. Controls (n 459) were randomly selected from the general population and frequency matched to cases by age, sex and race. All dietary variables were adjusted for energy intake using the residual method prior to data analysis. Logistic regression was performed to evaluate the associations between intake of three nutrients examined and the risk of pancreatic cancer. Total intake of Ca (936 v. 1026 mg/d) and dietary intake of Mg (315 v. 331 mg/d) and phosphorus (1350 v. 1402 mg/d) were significantly lower in cases than in controls. After adjustment for confounders, there were not significant associations of total and dietary intakes of Ca, Mg and phosphorus with the risk of pancreatic cancer. In addition, no significant interactions exist between intakes of these minerals and total fat on pancreatic cancer risk. In conclusion, the present study does not suggest that intakes of Ca, Mg and phosphorus were significantly associated with the risk of pancreatic cancer.
Parent-adolescent conflict seems to be common when adolescents negotiate power with their parents. Forum theatre (FT), an interactive and participatory theatre form, is recommended as a community-based intervention to assist Chinese parents in managing the challenges of parent-adolescent interaction. FT proposes that solutions to daily struggles can be reached through concerted efforts of the participants. This article documents the impact of FT on parents who took on the role of ‘spect-actor’. The spect-actor is an active spectator who acts on stage to test solutions to a problem. The results indicate that parents gained more awareness of their children’s needs, which helped them to relax their control over their children. FT is recommended as a means of parent education in schools.
Seasonal influenza virus epidemics have a major impact on healthcare systems. Data on population susceptibility to emerging influenza virus strains during the interepidemic period can guide planning for resource allocation of an upcoming influenza season. This study sought to assess the population susceptibility to representative emerging influenza virus strains collected during the interepidemic period. The microneutralisation antibody titers (MN titers) of a human serum panel against representative emerging influenza strains collected during the interepidemic period before the 2018/2019 winter influenza season (H1N1-inter and H3N2-inter) were compared with those against influenza strains representative of previous epidemics (H1N1-pre and H3N2-pre). A multifaceted approach, incorporating both genetic and antigenic data, was used in selecting these representative influenza virus strains for the MN assay. A significantly higher proportion of individuals had a ⩾four-fold reduction in MN titers between H1N1-inter and H1N1-pre than that between H3N2-inter and H3N2-pre (28.5% (127/445) vs. 4.9% (22/445), P < 0.001). The geometric mean titer (GMT) of H1N1-inter was significantly lower than that of H1N1-pre (381 (95% CI 339–428) vs. 713 (95% CI 641–792), P < 0.001), while there was no significant difference in the GMT between H3N2-inter and H3N2-pre. Since A(H1N1) predominated the 2018–2019 winter influenza epidemic, our results corroborated the epidemic subtype.
When and where do states coercively alter their internal demography? We build a theory that predicts under what conditions states alter the demographic “facts on the ground” by resettling and expelling ethno-national populations. We predict that, under particular scope conditions, states will employ demographic engineering to shore up control over (1) nonnatural frontiers, and (2) areas populated by ethnic minorities who are co-ethnics with elites in a hostile power. We then substantiate our predictions using new subnational data from both China and the USSR. Causally identifying the spatially differential effect of international conflict on demographic engineering via a difference-in-differences design, we find that the Sino-Soviet split (1959–1982) led to a disproportionate increase in the expulsion of ethnic Russians and resettlement of ethnic Han in Chinese border areas lacking a natural border with the USSR, and that resettlement was targeted at areas populated by ethnic Russians. On the Soviet side, we similarly find that the Sino-Soviet split led to a significant increase in expulsion of Chinese and the resettlement of Russians in border areas, and that resettlement was targeted at areas populated by more Chinese. We develop the nascent field of political demography by advancing our theoretical and empirical understanding of when, where, and to whom states seek to effect demographic change. By demonstrating that both ethnic group concentration and dispersion across borders are endogenous to international conflict, our results complicate a large and influential literature linking ethnic demography to conflict.
The following paper investigates the prevalence and characteristics of asymptomatic norovirus infection in the population living around oyster farm sites. Two consecutive surveys were conducted from January 2014 to December 2014 and 4549 stool samples were screened during the same time period. The total asymptomatic infection rate was 4.04% (184/4549). Norovirus infection rate was 5.20% in oyster farming population which was significantly higher compared with non-farming population where the infection rate was 3.65% (χ2 = 5.49, P < 0.05). A total of 184 NoV positive samples were identified by real time-quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) and semi-nested RT-PCR and 136 sequences were obtained. The sequences were clustered into 14 genotypes. GI strains were clustered into six genotypes, including GI.2, GI.3, GI.5, GI.6, GI.8 and GI.9; while GII strains were clustered into GII.2, GII.3, GII.4, GII.5, GII.6, GII.8 and GII.13. GI.9 and GII.17 were the predominant and most prevalent genotypes, respectively. The GII.17 genotype replaced GII.4 becoming the dominant genotype in the oyster farming area in 2014. To sum up, long-term monitoring of asymptomatic infection is crucial for the detection of new variant strains and for identifying outbreaks during the early stage.
Different diagnostic interviews are used as reference standards for major depression classification in research. Semi-structured interviews involve clinical judgement, whereas fully structured interviews are completely scripted. The Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview (MINI), a brief fully structured interview, is also sometimes used. It is not known whether interview method is associated with probability of major depression classification.
To evaluate the association between interview method and odds of major depression classification, controlling for depressive symptom scores and participant characteristics.
Data collected for an individual participant data meta-analysis of Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9) diagnostic accuracy were analysed and binomial generalised linear mixed models were fit.
A total of 17 158 participants (2287 with major depression) from 57 primary studies were analysed. Among fully structured interviews, odds of major depression were higher for the MINI compared with the Composite International Diagnostic Interview (CIDI) (odds ratio (OR) = 2.10; 95% CI = 1.15–3.87). Compared with semi-structured interviews, fully structured interviews (MINI excluded) were non-significantly more likely to classify participants with low-level depressive symptoms (PHQ-9 scores ≤6) as having major depression (OR = 3.13; 95% CI = 0.98–10.00), similarly likely for moderate-level symptoms (PHQ-9 scores 7–15) (OR = 0.96; 95% CI = 0.56–1.66) and significantly less likely for high-level symptoms (PHQ-9 scores ≥16) (OR = 0.50; 95% CI = 0.26–0.97).
The MINI may identify more people as depressed than the CIDI, and semi-structured and fully structured interviews may not be interchangeable methods, but these results should be replicated.
Declaration of interest
Drs Jetté and Patten declare that they received a grant, outside the submitted work, from the Hotchkiss Brain Institute, which was jointly funded by the Institute and Pfizer. Pfizer was the original sponsor of the development of the PHQ-9, which is now in the public domain. Dr Chan is a steering committee member or consultant of Astra Zeneca, Bayer, Lilly, MSD and Pfizer. She has received sponsorships and honorarium for giving lectures and providing consultancy and her affiliated institution has received research grants from these companies. Dr Hegerl declares that within the past 3 years, he was an advisory board member for Lundbeck, Servier and Otsuka Pharma; a consultant for Bayer Pharma; and a speaker for Medice Arzneimittel, Novartis, and Roche Pharma, all outside the submitted work. Dr Inagaki declares that he has received grants from Novartis Pharma, lecture fees from Pfizer, Mochida, Shionogi, Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma, Daiichi-Sankyo, Meiji Seika and Takeda, and royalties from Nippon Hyoron Sha, Nanzando, Seiwa Shoten, Igaku-shoin and Technomics, all outside of the submitted work. Dr Yamada reports personal fees from Meiji Seika Pharma Co., Ltd., MSD K.K., Asahi Kasei Pharma Corporation, Seishin Shobo, Seiwa Shoten Co., Ltd., Igaku-shoin Ltd., Chugai Igakusha and Sentan Igakusha, all outside the submitted work. All other authors declare no competing interests. No funder had any role in the design and conduct of the study; collection, management, analysis and interpretation of the data; preparation, review or approval of the manuscript; and decision to submit the manuscript for publication.
Symptoms of anxiety are prevalent in Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) and are associated with greater illness severity, suicidality, impaired functioning and poor response to antidepressant treatment (ADT). In MDD, anxiety symptoms can be assessed as ‘anxious distress’ (new DSM-5 specifier) or ‘anxious depression’ (score ≥7 on the HAM-D anxiety/somatization factor). Brexpiprazole is a serotonin–dopamine activity modulator that is a partial agonist at 5-HT1A and dopamine D2 receptors, and an antagonist at 5-HT2A and noradrenaline alpha1B/2C receptors – all at similar potency. Brexpiprazole is approved in the US for treatment ofschizophrenia, and as adjunctive treatment in MDD. The objective of this post-hoc analysis was to assess the efficacy of brexpiprazole as adjunct to ADT in patients with MDDand anxiety symptoms, using these two definitions of anxiety.
Data were pooled from three randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled studies with similar designs (Pyxis – NCT01360645; Polaris – NCT01360632; Sirius – NCT02196506). In each study, patients with MDD and an inadequate response to 1–3 ADTs received single-blind ADT for 8 weeks. Patients with inadequate response throughout this prospective phase were randomized to receive either ADT+brexpiprazole (2mg in Pyxis and Sirius; 1mg or 3 mg in Polaris) or ADT+placebo for 6 weeks. Proxies used to categorize patients as having ‘anxious distress’ included a score of ≥2 on the following symptoms at randomization: tension (MADRS item 3 score ≥3); restlessness (IDS item 24 score ≥2); concentration (MADRS item 6 score ≥3); or apprehension (HAM-D item 10 score ≥3). Scores on the items of the HAM-D anxiety/somatization factor at randomization (baseline) were used to identify patients with ‘anxious depression’. Efficacy was assessed as the change in MADRS total score from baseline to Week 6. Statistical analysis used a Mixed Model Repeated Measure approach using pooled brexpiprazole doses.
After 8 weeks of prospective ADT monotherapy, 57.6% (n=797/1,383) of patients met the criteria for anxious distress, and 48.5% (n=671/1,383) for anxious depression. The mean MADRS total score was 29.0 for patients with anxious distress in the adjunctive brexpiprazole (n=462) group and 29.1 in the placebo (n=327) group; while those with anxious depression were 28.9 (brexpiprazole; n=384) and 28.6 (placebo; n=282). Compared to those receiving placebo, patients with both anxious distress and anxious depression who received adjunctive brexpiprazole showed a greater improvement in MADRS total score (LS mean difference -2.38, p=0.0001 and -1.68, p=0.012, respectively). These improvements, compared to placebo, were similar to those in patients who had not met the criteria for anxious distress (-1.40, p=0.023) or anxious depression (-2.17, p<0.001).
Adjunctive brexpiprazole may be efficacious in reducing depressive symptoms both in patients with or without symptoms of anxiety.
The studies were funded by H. Lundbeck A/S and Otsuka Pharmaceutical Development & Commercialization, Inc.
The Chinese Loess Plateau, the world’s largest and oldest loess record, preserves evidence of Asia’s long-term dust source dynamics, but there is uncertainty over the source of the deposits. Recent single-grain detrital zircon U-Pb age analysis has progressed this issue, but debates remain about source changes, and the generation and interpretation of zircon data. To address this, we analyze different groupings of new and existing datasets from the Loess Plateau and potential sources. We also present the results of a first high resolution sampling, multi-proxy provenance analysis of Beiguoyuan loess using U-Pb dating of detrital zircons and detrital garnet geochemistry. The data shows that some small source differences seem to exist between different areas on the Loess Plateau. However, sediment source appears to be unchanging between loess and palaeosols, supporting a recent material recycling hypothesis. Our zircon and garnet data demonstrates, however, that Beiguoyuan experienced a temporary, abrupt source shift during the last glacial maximum, implying that local dust sources became periodically active during the Quaternary. Our results highlight that grouping data to achieve bigger datasets could cause identification of misleading trends. Additionally, we suggest that multi-proxy single-grain approaches are required to gain further insight into Chinese Loess Plateau dust sources.
Whether monozygotic (MZ) and dizygotic (DZ) twins differ from each other in a variety of phenotypes is important for genetic twin modeling and for inferences made from twin studies in general. We analyzed whether there were differences in individual, maternal and paternal education between MZ and DZ twins in a large pooled dataset. Information was gathered on individual education for 218,362 adult twins from 27 twin cohorts (53% females; 39% MZ twins), and on maternal and paternal education for 147,315 and 143,056 twins respectively, from 28 twin cohorts (52% females; 38% MZ twins). Together, we had information on individual or parental education from 42 twin cohorts representing 19 countries. The original education classifications were transformed to education years and analyzed using linear regression models. Overall, MZ males had 0.26 (95% CI [0.21, 0.31]) years and MZ females 0.17 (95% CI [0.12, 0.21]) years longer education than DZ twins. The zygosity difference became smaller in more recent birth cohorts for both males and females. Parental education was somewhat longer for fathers of DZ twins in cohorts born in 1990–1999 (0.16 years, 95% CI [0.08, 0.25]) and 2000 or later (0.11 years, 95% CI [0.00, 0.22]), compared with fathers of MZ twins. The results show that the years of both individual and parental education are largely similar in MZ and DZ twins. We suggest that the socio-economic differences between MZ and DZ twins are so small that inferences based upon genetic modeling of twin data are not affected.
OBJECTIVES/SPECIFIC AIMS: Obstructive lung disease following particulate matter (PM) exposure is a major health concern. Coexisting metabolic syndrome (MetSyn) often occurs. Receptor for advanced glycation end products (RAGE) is highly expressed in the lung, is a strong predictor of FEV1, and is a key mediator of MetSyn. To determine if the loss of RAGE protects from the persistence of effects of particulate associated lung injury in a murine model. METHODS/STUDY POPULATION: Wild type (WT) and RAGE knockout (RKO) mice were exposed to 100 μg of PM (WTC-Aggregate, PM53) or PBS control by oropharyngeal aspiration. Lung function, methacholine challenge, and bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) were quantified 28 days after PM exposure using flexiVent (Scireq Montreal, QC). BAL was obtained and cell differentials, cytokines and transcription factors were assayed. Bio-volume to airspace ratio and mean chord length were measured (Image J and Adobe Photoshop). RESULTS/ANTICIPATED RESULTS: WT mice were hyper-reactive to methacholine compared with their PBS controls 28 days after a single exposure to PM. They recovered from increased neutrophilia, loss of FEV, decreased compliance, and increased resistance, which were previously observed 24-hours after exposure. RKO were not hyper-reactive when compared with their own PBS controls. Lung histology shows persistence of loss of alveolar space in WT mice exposed to PM after 28 days. Area fraction was significantly higher in PM exposed WT mice after 28 days which was not significant after 24 hours. Mean chord length was significantly shorter for PM exposed at both time points for WT mice. The relative expression of phosphorylated to total CREB and ERK1/2 proteins was lower in RKO PM exposed mice compared with WT PM while STAT3 expression was lower in WT PM compared with WT PBS. PM induced a lower fold change of total proteins from the PBS controls in RKO for CREB, p38, ERK1/2, STAT3, and STAT5. JNK and p70S6k total proteins expressed a decreased fold change in WT PM exposed mice compared with WT PBS controls. DISCUSSION/SIGNIFICANCE OF IMPACT: A single dose of PM can produce persistent airway hyper-reactivity after 28 days of exposure. This PM induced injury is alleviated in the absence of RAGE, similar to what was seen at 24 hours. Inhibiting RAGE may be key to limiting the persistent inflammatory effects of high intensity PM exposure.
OBJECTIVES/SPECIFIC AIMS: In this pilot case-control study, the metabolome was quantified in subjects with previously measured serum and clinical biomarkers. The serum metabolome was then integrated with existing serum and clinical biomarkers of WTC-exposed firefighters to identify pathways significant to loss of lung function following acute PM-exposure. This robust subset of metabolite and serum biomarkers may be clinically relevant to predicting progression to lung disease in a larger cohort. METHODS/STUDY POPULATION: Serum drawn within 6 months of 9/11 was analyzed in this pilot. Clinical measures were obtained from electronic medical records. Never-smoking, male, WTC-exposed firefighters with normal pre-9/11 lung function were segregated based on FEV1 percent predicted (FEV1 %Pred) at symptomatic presentation. Cases of WTC-LI (FEV1 %Pred <LLN, n=15) and controls (n=15) were identified from previous cohorts. Ultrahigh performance liquid chromatography tandem mass spectroscopy quantified the metabolomic fingerprints of a group with previously assessed (by multiplex panels; ELISA and Luminex) serum chemokines and cytokines. High-dimensional data analysis and dimension reduction techniques integrated metabolites, cytokines, chemokines, and clinical data to identify pathways of WTC-LI on curated data. Random Forest (RF) out-of-bag estimated success rates were used to measure classification utility of the refined biomarker profile. Principal components analysis (PCA) was used to visualize class separation produced by the refined profile. RESULTS/ANTICIPATED RESULTS: Of the 765 metabolites detected, 580 metabolites were quantified in more than 80% of subjects/group with relative standard deviation ≥15%. Relevant chemokines, cytokines, and clinical biomarkers were included based on previously established clinical importance. Initial PCA explained 34.7% of the variance in the first 3 components. RF was used to identify the top 5% of biomarkers important to class separation. RF of the refined biomarker profile correctly classified cases and controls with a 96.7% estimated success rate. A PCA of the refined metabolic profile now explained 46.2% of the variance in components 1–3, demonstrating improved class separation. Differentiators between cases of WTC-LI and controls included elevated sphingolipids in cases of WTC-LI. The metabolic-inflammatory serum biomarkers MDC, Apo AI, GM-CSF, and heart rate play an important role in class separation. Phospholipids and lysolipids also appeared to differentiate cases of WTC-LI from controls. Specifically, several glycero-phosphatidylcholines (GPC) were elevated in cases of WTC-LI. DISCUSSION/SIGNIFICANCE OF IMPACT: High-dimensional data analysis on the metabolic fingerprints, serum, and clinical biomarker data of a subset of WTC-exposed 9/11 rescue workers has identified pathways associated with the loss of lung function. Sphingolipids, known to function as inflammatory signaling mediators, are thought to play important roles in lung function under both physiological and pathological conditions. Changes in sphingolipid metabolism have been linked to several pulmonary disorders, including asthma, COPD, and acute lung injury. Interestingly, a relation between sphingolipid metabolism and the metabolic-inflammatory pathway is suggested by similarities observed in PCA. Findings of elevated GPCs are similar to COPD literature. Higher levels of GPCs could correspond to elevated levels of lysophosphatidic acid (LPA), a ligand of RAGE. RAGE is a known proinflammatory mediator; LPA species have well-described roles as lipid signaling molecules, function as synthetic intermediates in other metabolic pathways, and were found to be predictive of WTC-LI. Since metabolites are more proximal markers of disease processes, metabolites could capture the complexity of past exposures and, therefore, may better inform treatment. These pathways warrant further investigation into their mechanisms and therapeutic importance.
The Wuhan Pre/Post-Natal Twin Birth Registry (WPTBR) is one of the largest twin birth registries with comprehensive medical information in China. It recruits women from the first trimester of pregnancy and their twins from birth. From January 2006 to May 2016, the total number of twins enrolled in WPTBR is 13,869 twin pairs (27,553 individuals). The WPTBR initiated the Wuhan Twin Birth Cohort (WTBC). The WTBC is a prospective cohort study carried out through incorporation of three samples. The first one comprises 6,920 twin pairs, and the second one, 6,949 twin pairs. Both are population-based samples linked to the WPTBR and include pre- and post-natal information from WPTBR. The second sample includes neonatal blood spots as well. Using a hospital-based approach, we recently developed a third sample with a target enrolment of 1,000 twin pairs and their mothers. These twins are invited, via their parents, to participate in a periodic health examination from the first trimester of pregnancy to 18 years. Biological samples are collected initially from the mother, including blood, urine, cord blood, cord, amniotic fluid, placenta, breast milk and meconium, and vaginal secretions, and later from the twins, including meconium, stool, urine, and blood. This article describes the design, recruitment, follow-up, data collection, and measures, as well as ongoing and planned analyses at the WTBC. The WTBC offers a unique opportunity to follow women from prenatal to postnatal, as well as follow-up of their twins. This cohort study will expand the understanding of genetic and environmental influences on pregnancy and twins’ development in China.
A trend toward greater body size in dizygotic (DZ) than in monozygotic (MZ) twins has been suggested by some but not all studies, and this difference may also vary by age. We analyzed zygosity differences in mean values and variances of height and body mass index (BMI) among male and female twins from infancy to old age. Data were derived from an international database of 54 twin cohorts participating in the COllaborative project of Development of Anthropometrical measures in Twins (CODATwins), and included 842,951 height and BMI measurements from twins aged 1 to 102 years. The results showed that DZ twins were consistently taller than MZ twins, with differences of up to 2.0 cm in childhood and adolescence and up to 0.9 cm in adulthood. Similarly, a greater mean BMI of up to 0.3 kg/m2 in childhood and adolescence and up to 0.2 kg/m2 in adulthood was observed in DZ twins, although the pattern was less consistent. DZ twins presented up to 1.7% greater height and 1.9% greater BMI than MZ twins; these percentage differences were largest in middle and late childhood and decreased with age in both sexes. The variance of height was similar in MZ and DZ twins at most ages. In contrast, the variance of BMI was significantly higher in DZ than in MZ twins, particularly in childhood. In conclusion, DZ twins were generally taller and had greater BMI than MZ twins, but the differences decreased with age in both sexes.
For over 100 years, the genetics of human anthropometric traits has attracted scientific interest. In particular, height and body mass index (BMI, calculated as kg/m2) have been under intensive genetic research. However, it is still largely unknown whether and how heritability estimates vary between human populations. Opportunities to address this question have increased recently because of the establishment of many new twin cohorts and the increasing accumulation of data in established twin cohorts. We started a new research project to analyze systematically (1) the variation of heritability estimates of height, BMI and their trajectories over the life course between birth cohorts, ethnicities and countries, and (2) to study the effects of birth-related factors, education and smoking on these anthropometric traits and whether these effects vary between twin cohorts. We identified 67 twin projects, including both monozygotic (MZ) and dizygotic (DZ) twins, using various sources. We asked for individual level data on height and weight including repeated measurements, birth related traits, background variables, education and smoking. By the end of 2014, 48 projects participated. Together, we have 893,458 height and weight measures (52% females) from 434,723 twin individuals, including 201,192 complete twin pairs (40% monozygotic, 40% same-sex dizygotic and 20% opposite-sex dizygotic) representing 22 countries. This project demonstrates that large-scale international twin studies are feasible and can promote the use of existing data for novel research purposes.
Specific roles of individual CDPKs vary, but in general they mediate essential biological functions necessary for parasite survival. A comparative analysis of the structure-activity relationships (SAR) of Neospora caninum, Eimeria tenella and Babesia bovis calcium-dependent protein kinases (CDPKs) together with those of Plasmodium falciparum, Cryptosporidium parvum and Toxoplasma gondii was performed by screening against 333 bumped kinase inhibitors (BKIs). Structural modelling and experimental data revealed that residues other than the gatekeeper influence compound–protein interactions resulting in distinct sensitivity profiles. We subsequently defined potential amino-acid structural influences within the ATP-binding cavity for each orthologue necessary for consideration in the development of broad-spectrum apicomplexan CDPK inhibitors. Although the BKI library was developed for specific inhibition of glycine gatekeeper CDPKs combined with low inhibition of threonine gatekeeper human SRC kinase, some library compounds exhibit activity against serine- or threonine-containing CDPKs. Divergent BKI sensitivity of CDPK homologues could be explained on the basis of differences in the size and orientation of the hydrophobic pocket and specific variation at other amino-acid positions within the ATP-binding cavity. In particular, BbCDPK4 and PfCDPK1 are sensitive to a larger fraction of compounds than EtCDPK1 despite the presence of a threonine gatekeeper in all three CDPKs.
Inhibition of phosphodiesterase-4 (PDE4), an enzyme that specifically hydrolyzes cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) increases intracellular cAMP/cAMP-response element binding protein (CREB) signaling. Activation of this signaling is considered as an important compensatory response that decreases motivational properties of drugs of abuse. However, it is not known whether PDE4 is involved in heroin seeking. Self-administration of heroin (50 μg/kg/infusion) was performed under the fixed ratio 1 (FR1) schedule for 14 d and then drug seeking was extinguished for 10 d. The progressive ratio schedule was used to evaluate the relative motivational value of heroin reinforcement. After training, the conditioned cue or heroin priming (250 μg/kg) was introduced for the reinstatement of heroin-seeking behavior. Pretreatment (i.p.) with rolipram (0.03–0.3 mg/kg), a prototypical, selective PDE4 inhibitor, failed to inhibit heroin self-administration under the FR1 schedule, but decreased the reward values under the progressive ratio schedule in a dose-dependent manner. In addition, rolipram decreased the reinstatement of heroin seeking induced by cues or heroin priming even at the lowest dose (0.03 mg/kg); in contrast, the highest dose (0.3 mg/kg) of rolipram was required to decrease sucrose reinforcement. Finally, the effects of rolipram on heroin-seeking behavior were correlated with the increases in expression of phosphorylated CREB in the nucleus accumbens. The study demonstrated that rolipram inhibited heroin reward and heroin-seeking behavior. The results suggest that PDE4 plays an essential role in mediating heroin seeking and that PDE4 inhibitors may be used as a potential pharmacotherapeutic approach for heroin addiction.