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    Hubris or Talent? Estimating the Role of Overconfidence in Chinese households’ Investment Decisions

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    We document the extent to which overconfidence in one’s financial literacy (FL overconfidence) plays a role in households’ reported financial risk aversion and their actual investment behavior, using data from the China Household Finance Survey. We measure FL overconfidence by estimating the gap between people’s self-reported financial literacy and their objectively measured financial knowledge. Our results indicate that FL overconfidence is negatively associated with self-reported financial risk aversion. Additionally, FL overconfidence is positively associated with the likelihood of having a brokerage account, holding risky financial instruments (other than just stock), and a proportion of assets allocated towards risky assets. We then use machine learning methods to predict which factors are most important in determining households’ risky investment decisions. We find that overconfidence plays a significant predictive role. Our work signals that households’ risky investments may be driven by biased optimism about their own financial know-how rather than their actual knowledge. We conclude that financial literacy programs should not only teach financial concepts but also make program participants aware of their own biases

    False Discovery Rate and Localizing Power

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    False discovery rate (FDR) is commonly used for correction for multiple testing in neuroimaging studies. However, when using two-tailed tests, making directional inferences about the results can lead to vastly inflated error rate, even approaching 100% in some cases. This happens because FDR only provides weak control over the error rate, meaning that the proportion of error is guaranteed only globally over all tests, not within subsets, such as among those in only one or another direction. Here we consider and evaluate different strategies for FDR control with two-tailed tests, using both synthetic and real imaging data. Approaches that separate the tests by direction of the hypothesis test, or by the direction of the resulting test statistic, more properly control the directional error rate and preserve FDR benefits, albeit with a doubled risk of errors under complete absence of signal. Strategies that combine tests in both directions, or that use simple two-tailed p-values, can lead to invalid directional conclusions, even if these tests remain globally valid. To enable valid thresholding for directional inference, we suggest that imaging software should allow the possibility that the user sets asymmetrical thresholds for the two sides of the statistical map. While FDR continues to be a valid, powerful procedure for multiple testing correction, care is needed when making directional inferences for two-tailed tests, or more broadly, when making any localized inference

    Neurocellular ER Stress Response in Alzheimer\u27s Disease and Related Dementias (ADRD) Risk

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    Background: Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) pathology, characterized by neurodegeneration, amyloid-β (Aβ) plaques, and intracellular tangles of hyperphosphorylated Tau, starts in the entorhinal cortex and then spreads to the hippocampus and cerebral cortex. The presence of AD pathology in the hippocampus is strongly correlated with cognitive decline. The hippocampus is also one of the major sites of adult neurogenesis in the brain and accumulating evidence now suggests that adult hippocampal neurogenesis (AHN) that occurs throughout life (albeit declining with age) is essential for cellular homeostasis and hippocampus-dependent cognitive functions, and is severely impaired in ADRD patients. However, the causation of impaired AHN in ADRD patients and its contribution to ADRD-related cognitive decline remains poorly understood. Studies of postmortem AD brain showed elevated levels of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress. While the accumulation of Aβ and intracellular neurofibrillary tangles may primarily contribute to ER stress by disruption of Ca2+ and protein homeostasis and the resulting unfolded protein response (UPR) potentially alters AHN by mechanisms yet to be fully understood. Methods: To study the ER stress-associated neurocellular response and its effects on neurocellular homeostasis and neurogenesis, we performed ER stress challenge using Thapsigargin (TG), a specific inhibitor of sarco/endoplasmic reticulum Ca2+ ATPase (SERCA), on induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) derived neural stem cells (NSCs) of two individuals of our Mexican American Family Study (MAFS). We have previously shown that our iPSC-derived NSCs are transcriptionally akin to dorsal neuroepithelium that give rise to the majority of the central nervous system and are a relevant cell type to study developmental and adult neurogenesis. Both pre- and post-ER stress-challenged NSCs were multi-dimensionally phenotyped by quantitative high-content screening and genome-wide mRNA sequencing (mRNAseq) analysis. Results: The high-content phenotypic analysis of the pre- and post-ER stress-challenged NSCs shows evidence of upregulated UPR, a decline in NSC proliferation, an increase in apoptosis, and cellular oxidative stress in post-ER stress-challenged NSCs. A total of 2,300 genes were significantly (moderated t statistics FDR corrected p-value ≤ 0.05 and Fold Change absolute ≥ 2.0) differentially expressed (DE) between pre- and post-ER stress-challenged NSCs. The DE genes showed significant enrichment in protein export, DNA replication, protein processing in ER, cell cycle, and apoptosis KEGG pathways. All three UPR-associated (PERK, ATF6, and IRE1) pathways were significantly upregulated. Due to the short G1 phase, activated NSCs rely on higher expression of CDT1 and CDC6 licensing factors and MCM complex for timely DNA duplication during the cell cycle, ER stress-induced activation of UPR down-regulated CDT1 licensing factor and MCM complex genes in ER stress-challenged NSCs and induced G1 phase cell cycle arrest. The ER stress-challenged NSCs also showed activation of CHOP-mediated apoptosis and down-regulation of neurotransmitter homeostasis and synaptic plasticity-associated genes. Conclusions: Overall our results suggest that ER stress-associated attenuation of NSC self-renewal, increased apoptosis, and dysregulated neurotransmitter homeostasi

    Characterization of YB1 in Hepatocellular Carcinoma Cells

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    Background: The Rio Grande Valley’s demographics show that the Hispanic population demographics exceeds more than 92% in The Rio Grande Valley. Being the most prominent ethnicity. Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) affects the Hispanic community greatly, and many factors impact the suceptibility. In 2022, liver cancer was predicted to be the fifth and seventh major cause for mortality in both males and females, respectively. Given its fast-growing rate and its aggressiveness, it is important to study the social, cultural, and most importantly the biogenetic factors that affect the prevalence of the disease. Unfortunately, in Texas, and specifically in the RGV, its prevalence rate has increased by 36% in recent years. One of the reasons for the high mortality of HCC, is drug resistance to first line drug treatment for the disease. According to TCGA data, YBox Binding Protein 1 (YBX1) is upregulated in HCC and is part of a super family of proteins that regulates mRNA translation. Further investigation of this protein could lead to a mechanism of drug resistance in HCC. Methods: Hepatocellular carcinoma cell line Skhep-1 will be obtained from ATCC and cultured as recommended. Stable overexpressing and knock-down cell lines of YB1 will be generated via plasmid transfection, puromycin selection, and FACS sorting. RT-PCR and western blot will be utilized to verify the overexpression of YBX1 at the mRNA and protein level in the recombinant cell lines. The resulting cell lines will be tested for oncogenicity though phenotypic assays, such as migration, invasion, proliferation, and colony formation. Results: Prior bioinformatic work done by the lab investigated YBX1 expression levels in the TCGA database, the structure and domain were also analysed. This protein has been reported to be linked to a worse survival rate and according to TCGA data it is overexpressed in HCC patients. The recombinant YBX1 overexpressed cells are sorted for GFP enrichment and validated via RT-PCRs and Western Blots. Preliminary data elucidates YBX1 protein overexpression has an increased proliferation, migration, invasion, and colony formation. Conclusions: The identification of this protein is important as it is linked with a lower survival rate. Further comprehensive research has revealed that oncogenic proteins, such as YBX1, can also play roles in drug resistance. Since one of the many hurdles of treating HCC is an unfavorable interaction with first-line drugs currently utilized to treat HCC, the future direction of this research will include further investigation of YBX1 overexpression and its relation to drug resistance

    Adipose Stem Cells as an Adjunct to Peripheral Nerve Surgery

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    Background: Currently, many different techniques exist for the surgical repair of peripheral nerves. The degree of injury dictates the repair and, depending on the defect or injury of the peripheral nerve, plastic surgeons can perform nerve repairs, grafts, and transfers. All the previously listed techniques are routinely performed in human patients, but a novel addition to these peripheral nerve surgeries involves concomitant fat grafting to the repair site at the time of surgery. Fat grafting provides adipose-derived stem cells (ADSCs) to the injury site. Though fat grafting is performed as an adjunct to some peripheral nerve surgeries, there is no clear evidence as to which procedures have improved outcomes resultant from concomitant fat grafting. This review explores the evidence presented in various animal studies regarding outcomes of fat grafting at the time of various types of peripheral nerve surgery. Methods: A literature search was performed with key words including “fat grafting,” “adipose derived stem cells,” “animal research,” and “peripheral nerve surgery.” An additional requirement for the studies was that they evaluated functional outcomes. Participant number and outcome evaluation of animal nerve repair surgeries, nerve grafting studies, tissue engineered nerve graft studies, and nerve transfer studies were inserted into tables for study comparison. Results: Animal experiments demonstrate that various types of peripheral nerve surgeries have the potential to benefit from the addition of ADSCs during surgery. ADSCs have proven beneficial for nerve regeneration on multiple levels, including by secreting growth factors and by morphing into Schwann-like cells, which can modulate genes in a way that facilitates peripheral nerve healing. Current literature on animal peripheral nerve surgery with an addition of fat grafting includes studies on nerve repair. nerve grafting, nerve grafting with tissue engineered nerve grafts, and nerve transfers. Conclusion: Very few of the existing studies evaluate the functional outcomes of adipose derived stem cell addition to peripheral nerve studies, as seen in this review. One of the reasons that animal studies are so useful is due to their ability to correlate histological and functional outcomes, which is not ethical in many cases in human studies. Future studies should consider evaluating functional outcomes so that meaningful applications could be more easily extracted in relation to physiological effects

    Comatose Deception, Benzodiazepine masquerade of Myxedema Coma

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    Introduction: Myxedema coma is a life:-threatening condition due to severe hypothyroidism or long-standing untreated hypothyroidism. This condition can be triggered by factors such as infection, exposure to certain medications, or other stressors on the body. Symptoms of myxedema coma include hypothermia, altered mental status, and fluid accumulation. This condition can be life threatening and requires immediate medical attention. Benzodiazepines are often prescribed to address various conditions such as anxiety, sedation, and seizures. However, they have significant side effects including drowsiness, sedation, low blood pressure, and slow heart rate. These side effects can mimic symptoms of other conditions such as myxedema coma. In this case we describe a patient who initially appeared to have overdosed on benzodiazepines but was later diagnosed with myxedema coma. Case Presentation: A 49-year-old lady presented to the emergency department in an obtunded state and decreased respiratory drive. Earlier that day, she accidentally ingested a fish burger despite having a fish allergy, and experienced wheezing, facial swelling, and vomiting. She self-administered an epinephrine pen to manage the allergic symptoms. She was found unconscious by her daughter, who promptly called emergency medical services (EMS). Although no signs of an allergic reaction observed, EMS noted bradycardia and a reduced respiratory drive and administered naloxone and flumazenil which mildly improved her symptoms. The patient\u27s medical history included post-traumatic stress disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, bipolar type one, fibromyalgia, and hypothyroidism with inconsistent medication (levothyroxine) adherence. Her medication regimen included clonazepam (2mg twice daily), trazodone (100mg twice daily), tizanidine (4mg twice daily), fluoxetine (20mg daily), and temazepam (50mg twice daily). She was not taking levothyroxine at that time daily. Her daughter reported a progressive decline in strength, fatigue, weight gain, hoarse voice, dyspnea on exertion, and cold intolerance over the recent months. During assessment, vital signs indicated a temperature of 97 degrees Fahrenheit, bradycardia (56), respiratory rate (10), blood pressure 93/38, oxygen saturation of 85% on room air, and body mass index of 55. Physical examination revealed obesity, acute distress, constricted pupils (2-3), a short supple neck, audible inspiratory stridor, tenderness in the left upper quadrant of the abdomen, and 2+ pitting edema in bilateral lower extremities. Laboratory findings revealed hypercarbia (31.7 mmol/L), reduced glomerular filtration rate (39.4 ml/min/1.73 mm2), elevated thyroid-stimulating hormone (179 uIU/ml), and low free thyroxine (0.1 ng/dl) levels. With a Popoveniuc score of 80, she met the diagnostic criteria for myxedema coma and was promptly started on levothyroxine. Conclusion: Initial diagnosis of benzodiazepine overdose was questioned due to consistent use, confirmed by pharmacy refill dates, and most importantly lack of typical symptoms of overdose and response to treatment. Later it was proved that noncompliance with levothyroxine led to myxedema coma triggered by benzodiazepines which worsened her condition. This case emphasizes the need for vigilance in distinguishing between benzodiazepine side effects and other conditions. Timely recognition and appropriate treatment, such as levothyroxine initiation, are crucial in managing myxedema coma and preventing life-threatening complications

    [Brownsville] Close up aerial view of Missouri Pacific Railroad intersection with Southmost Blvd.

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    Aerial view of Missouri Pacific Railroad intersection with Southmost Blvd. Part of former spur line into Southmost.

    “Blood, Blood Everywhere”: A Case of Buried Bumper Syndrome Presenting as Melena and Hematochezia

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    Gastrostomy tubes are frequently placed for a variety of conditions that cause interference with oral intake or gastric decompression and are used for enteral feeding, hydration, and medication administration in patients who are likely to have prolonged inadequate oral intake. Buried bumper syndrome is an extremely rare, but major complication of gastrostomy tubes which results due to tight apposition of the external bumper against the abdominal wall and erosion of the internal bumper of the gastrostomy tube against the gastric wall. The overall incidence has been reported to be 0.3 to 2.6 % of all patients with gastrostomy tubes. We present a patient who presented with melena, hematochezia and severe blood loss anemia, and was found to have buried bumper syndrome

    [Brownsville] Aerial view of Boca Chica Blvd. and Ebony Heights

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    Aerial view of Boca Chica Blvd. before the construction of the expressway. Building in corner next to railroad was the Edelstein\u27s Better Furniture. As of late, it is VentureX.

    Periacetabular Osteotomy: An Analysis of Social Media to Determine the Most Common Questions Asked by the Periacetabular Osteotomy Population

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    Background: Social media has become an increasingly popular resource for patients and a platform to share one’s experiences. Patients undergoing periacetabular osteotomy (PAO) may gravitate towards social media for support, guidance and understanding. The aim of this study was to investigate Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to further understand what the most common preoperative and postoperative questions patients undergoing PAO are asking. Methods: Facebook, Instagram and Twitter were queried consecutively from February 1, 2023 to November 23, 2011. Facebook was searched for the two most populated interest groups; “Periacetabular Osteotomy (PAO)” and “Periacetabular Osteotomy Australia”. Instagram and Twitter were queried for the most popular hashtags: “#PAOwarrior”, “#PAOsurgery”, “#periacetabularosteotomy”, “#periacetabularosteotomyrecovery”, and “#paorecovery”. Patient questions were categorized according to preoperative and postoperative questions. Questions were further placed into specific themes in their respective preoperative or postoperative question types. Results: Two thousand five hundred and fifty-nine posts were collected, with 849 (33%) posts containing 966 questions. Of the 966 questions, 443 (45.9%) and 523 (54.1%) were preoperative and postoperative questions, respectively. The majority of questions were postoperative complication related (23%) and symptom management (21%). Other postoperative questions included recovery/rehabilitation (21%), and general postoperative questions (18%). The most common preoperative questions were related to PAO education (23%). Rehabilitation (19%), hip dysplasia education (17%), and surgeon selection (12%) were other preoperative questions topics included. Most questions came from Facebook posts. Of 1,054 Facebook posts, 76% were either preoperative or postoperative questions and from the perspective of the patient (87%). Conclusion: The majority of patients in the PAO population sought advice on postoperative complications and symptom management. Some patients asked about education surrounding PAO surgery. Understanding the most common concerns and questions patients have can help providers educate patients and focus on more patient-relevant perioperative conversations


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