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    Collegiate athletes\u27 body composition by sport and position

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    This study assessed the body composition of an urban Division I university’s athletes by gender, sport, position, and year of training. Retrospective data was used including 342 athletes from various sports such as: baseball, basketball, cross country, football, soccer, swimming, tennis, track and field, and volleyball. Sixty percent of the athletes were women (n=206) and 40.0 % were men (n=132). Fat free mass (FFM) was hypothesized to increase with years of collegiate training. The secondary aim was to compare percent body fat (%BF) of these athletes to similar studies and textbook standards. All athletes were uninjured, actively participating, and between the ages of 18-24 years old. Body composition of each athlete was measured via BODPOD after appropriate preparation procedures and calibration took place. Data was stratified by subject identifier, gender, year of training, age, height, weight, sport, position, ethnicity, fat mass (FM), FFM, %BF, and percent fat free mass (%FFM). Statistical units used to determine outcomes were means, standard deviations, and ranges. Most positions were unable to be stratified into 4 individual years of training, but instead were evaluated using year 1 and the 4-year average. Only six positions were stratified by gender, sport, position, and each individual year of training. No longitudinal data occurred in this study. When comparing the results of this study to similar studies found in literature or sports nutrition textbooks, the results were similar across gender, sport, and position. This cross-sectional descriptive study showed a positive association between FFM among women basketball guards, women soccer defenders, women track and field sprinters/middle distance/ hurdlers, and women volleyball outside/right side hitters with year of training. This study produced %BF values similar to those found in the literature and textbooks. Conclusions on the remaining women’s sports, positions, and men’s athletics were not possible due to small samples. Division I college athletes’ body composition did vary by gender, sport, and position due to different positional functions. Future studies with large samples of athletes tracked prospectively are needed to better describe body composition by position and years of training, and to assess body composition change longitudinally


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    Evasion of apoptosis is integral to tumorigenesis and drug resistance. BCL-2 and p53 proteins represent two focal nodes in convergent apoptosis signaling. Upregulation of anti-apoptotic BCL-2 family members and inactivation of p53 functions are two canonical approaches exploited by cancer cells to escape apoptosis. In the current study, we find that BCL-2 protein is highly expressed in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) cells. BCL-2–specific inhibitor ABT-199 potently induces mitochondrial apoptosis in AML cells and effectively kills AML stem/progenitor cells. Our biomarker studies demonstrate that both BH3 profiling and the expression profiling of BCL-2 proteins may serve as predictive biomarkers for the efficacy of ABT-199. Despite the initial success, we find that MCL-1 protein renders cancer cells resistant to ABT-199. Next we investigated whether p53 activation could overcome MCL-1–mediated resistance to BCL-2 inhibitor ABT-199. We demonstrate that p53 activation by MDM2 inhibitor RG7388 effectively overcomes the acquired or inherent resistance to ABT-199 both in vitro and in vivo. Mechanistic studies indicate that ABT-199 induces stabilizing phosphorylation of MCL-1. Surprisingly, p53 activation mediates the conversion from stabilized MCL-1 to destabilized MCL-1. Further mechanistic studies demonstrate that p53 activation inhibits N-Ras/Raf/MEK/ERK signaling and releases GSK3 activity to modulate MCL-1 phosphorylation and promote Mcl-1 degradation. Additionally, p53 activation also induces pro-apoptotic proteins such as PUMA and BAX to counteract MCL-1, thus overcoming Mcl-1 mediated resistance at multiple levels. During the course of this study, we find that AML cells resistant to BCL-2 inhibition may also be resistant to p53 activation. We demonstrate that p53-induced p21Cip1 protein confer tumor resistance by promoting reversible G1 arrest. Importantly, BCL-2 inhibition switches the outcomes of p53 activation from pro-survival G1 arrest to apoptosis, thus overcoming AML resistance to p53 activation. The combination of BCL-2 inhibition and p53 induction markedly prolongs survival in three resistant mouse models of AML. These results collectively indicate that p53 activation and BCL-2 inhibition reciprocally overcome apoptosis resistance to either strategy alone. Our study provides novel mechanistic insights into the mechanisms of apoptosis resistance and forms the concept for an international phase II trial in AML

    Exposure Outliers: Children, Mothers, and Cumulative Disaster Exposure in Louisiana

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    Only a limited number of studies have explored the effects of cumulative disaster exposure—defined here as multiple, acute onset, large-scale collective events that cause disruption for individuals, families, and entire communities. Research that is available indicates that children and adults who experience these potentially traumatic community-level events are at greater risk of a variety of negative health outcomes and ongoing secondary stressors throughout their life course. The present study draws on in-depth interviews with a qualitative subsample of nine mother-child pairs who were identified as both statistical and theoretical outliers in terms of their levels of disaster exposure through their participation in a larger, longitudinal Women and Their Children’s Health (WaTCH) project that was conducted following the British Petroleum Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill. During Wave 2 of the WaTCH study, mothers and their children were asked survey questions about previous exposure to and the impacts of the oil spill, hurricanes, and other disasters. This article presents the qualitative interview data collected from the subsample of children and mothers who both endorsed that they had experienced three or more disasters that had a major impact on the child and the household. We refer to these children as exposure outliers. The in-depth narratives of the four mother-child pairs who told stories of multiple pre-disaster stressors emerging from structural inequalities and health and financial problems, protracted and unstable displacements, and high levels of material and social losses illustrate how problems can pile up to slow or completely hinder individual and family disaster recovery. These four mother-child pairs were especially likely to have experienced devastating losses in Hurricane Katrina in 2005, which then led to an accumulation of disadvantage and ongoing cycles of loss and disruption. The stories of the remaining five mother-child pairs underscore how pre-disaster resources, post-disaster support, and institutional stabilizing forces can accelerate recovery even after multiple disaster exposures. This study offers insights about how families can begin to prepare for a future that is likely to be increasingly punctuated by more frequent and intense extreme weather events and other types of disaster

    Project Reach: Implementation of Evidence-Based Psychotherapy Within Integrated Healthcare for Hurricane Harvey Affected Individuals

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    Project Reach was established to deliver evidence-based mental healthcare services to children and adults affected by Hurricane Harvey and its aftermath. Through Project Reach, an innovative multi-component assessment and treatment service is utilized to identify and treat in integrated healthcare settings both children and adults exhibiting significant behavioral health concerns in Houston. The aim is to provide sustainable, integrated mental health services through primary care and school-based settings to post-Harvey affected individuals whose emotional needs remain unmet. This paper describes the design and implementation of Project Reach as well as special considerations for implementation. The overall goal of Project Reach is to form a platform for expanding integrated services for those affected by Harvey that will maximize behavioral health outcomes while reducing cost and improving access


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    After identification of one or more structural abnormalities in a fetus, pregnant women are offered a host of different testing options to identify a possible genetic cause for the structural abnormality(ies). When considering what type of test to undertake, there is limited information on the diagnostic yield of the varying testing options. Some women may miss an opportunity to gain the information they are seeking or make a less informed decision when they choose a testing option after identification of a structural abnormality due to this lack of information. This study aimed to identify the potential diagnostic yield of all currently available prenatal testing options in the presence of a structural abnormality through a retrospective chart review of a postnatal population of infants with structural abnormalities. Of 791 patients with at least one structural abnormality, 691 patients underwent genetic testing and 222 had a genetic aberration that explained their phenotype. Chromosomal microarray had the highest potential diagnostic yield across the entire cohort and among individuals with multiple structural abnormalities, 26.8% (95% CI: 23.5 - 30.3) and 29.0% (95% CI: 25.3 - 33.3) respectively, which reached significance (

    Development of a High-Throughput System for Screening of Anti-Prion Molecules

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    The misfolded prion protein causes and transmits disease in both humans and animals. As other infectious agents, prions display strain variation, which can generate different pathological outcomes in affected individuals. Unfortunately, there are no known therapies for these diseases, which at present are invariably fatal. In this work, the Protein Misfolding Cyclic Amplification technology (PMCA, an in vitro test that replicates minimum quantities of infectious prions) has been modified to screen for small molecules inhibiting prion protein misfolding in a strain-specific manner. In order to approach a high-throughput PMCA system, technical aspects in PMCA has been optimized for application of prions from laboratory rodents (i.e., mouse and Syrian hamsters) using a 96-well plate PMCA (96wp-PMCA) platform. Utilizing the 96wp-PMCA technique, a small number of anti-prion and anti-amyloid molecules has been tested against these prion strains using different solvents and at varying concentrations. My results show that regardless of sequence homology, prion strains are differentially responsive to known protein misfolding inhibitors. Continual optimization of PMCA towards a high-throughput system may be used not only for screening therapeutic agents but also for diagnosis


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    Over 72,000 people die from overdose or secondary health issues related to substance use disorder (SUD) annually. Studies support mind-body interventions in reducing stress, anxiety, depression, and craving symptoms. There is a growing body of literature supporting yoga as a mind-body intervention for individuals recovering from SUD. These interventions promote improved physical awareness, greater awareness of mental states, non-reactivity, and reduced perception of pain, allows for more successful coping with cravings. Ashtanga yoga (AY) is a tradition of yoga wherein students work on a one-on-one basis with highly qualified teachers following an invariant sequence of yoga postures. AY is characterized by intense physical exercise, controlled breathing, and a focused gazing point which combined create a concentrated mindfulness practice. Because research supports reduction in depression, anxiety, stress, and addictive behaviors from mindfulness interventions, AY may be a highly effective intervention for individuals recovering from SUD. Currently, no research has investigated AY interventions for individuals with SUD. This study identified measurable outcomes from individuals with SUD who use AY as a tool for their recovery. The objectives of this qualitative investigation were to identify domains worthy of further investigation including appeal of AY, change in underlying symptoms, transfer of mindfulness skills to daily life, and leadership. 31 participants, age 18 or older, who have practiced AY for at least 3 months completed an open-ended web-based survey. Qualitative content analysis revealed that the participants shared common themes of physical appeal, giving explicit credit to AY for their sobriety, and improvements to stress, anxiety, depression, confidence, and self-image. They also noted transformation of their daily lives through improved routine and the use of mindfulness skills and breathing exercises. Additionally, participants noted new roles as leaders in their communities. These domains will inform future study of AY interventions for SUD. Additionally, they will inform recruitment and design for SUD public health interventions. Limitations include an inability to expand upon participants’ responses, and because of the rigidity of AY, limited transferability of findings to less structured yoga styles. This study employed a novel use of web-based qualitative data collection and social media based, peer-to-peer recruitment


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    Community-based early literacy intervention programs show promise in improving the home language environment, particularly for children at increased risk of language delays and poor school readiness. However, the literature on parents’ perspective of these programs is limited. This study investigated the perspectives and language scores of participants in upWORDS, a community-based literacy intervention program in Houston, TX. Through mixed-methods, this study aimed to describe the program’s impact on parents’ views on child development, changes in child behaviors, and continued application of information from the program. It also aimed to identify patterns in parent-reported measurements of children’s language skills over time. The primary investigator (PI) conducted secondary analysis on semi-structured interviews of parents who had completed upWORDS at least 1 year before the interview. Secondary quantitative data analysis was also done on LENA Snapshots, the parent-reported measurements of children’s language skills. Qualitative analysis revealed 2 themes. The theme of child development included 3 subthemes: child’s interest in reading, child’s communication, and concerns about child development. The theme of parent knowledge and behavior change included 5 subthemes: awareness of developmental delay, better understanding of normal child development, impact on childcare and school, parent child interaction, and challenges to applying program information and sustaining behaviors. Snapshot results tended to improve by the end of the program but improvements were not sustained. There was no correlation between Snapshot results and parents’ report of challenges or sustained behavior changes. Overall parents reported multiple sustained benefits of the program that can be helpful for early literacy program implementers and pediatric primary care providers. Future steps should include a larger study to better characterize Snapshot patterns


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    Fibromyalgia (FM) is a medical condition characterized by chronic pain and tenderness. Individuals with FM may experience burdensome symptoms, which impact their health-related quality of life. Treatment for FM includes pharmacological and non pharmacological practices. Non-pharmacological treatments for FM include dietary management, routine exercise, and physical and mind-body therapies. There is growing evidence that the utilization of mind-body practices is increasing in the United States, but there have been limited investigations done to observe the use of mind-body practices in the FM population. The purpose of this study is to identify predictors of the use of meditation and/or meditative movement in individuals with FM. The secondary aims are to describe the percentage of adults with and without FM that use mind-body practices and compare the demographic traits of people with FM who use meditation versus meditative movement. Using data from the 2017 National Health Interview Survey, descriptive statistics were used to determine the percentage of adults that use mind-body practices between those with FM and those without FM. To compare demographic and medical characteristics of individuals with FM that use meditation, meditative movement, both or neither practices, χ2 tests were performed. Lastly, a multinomial logistic regression model was used to examine predictors of using meditation, meditative movement, neither or both practices. The analyses revealed that people without FM were significantly more likely to use mantra and spiritual meditation, yoga, and tai chi compared to people with FM. Predictors of using mind-body practices include being young, female, and college educated

    Your Patient and My Client: Perspectives from Legal Work With Unaccompanied Children

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    Drawing from a dozen years’ experience in providing legal services to unaccompanied immigrant children, the author describes the legal landscape navigated by immigrant children, and some of the challenges they face. The article suggests approaches to improved communication when serving a child who is an immigrant to the U.S., calls for an increase in cross-disciplinary collaboration, and concludes with a suggested reading and resource list
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