683 research outputs found

    Smart homes and their users:a systematic analysis and key challenges

    Get PDF
    Published research on smart homes and their users is growing exponentially, yet a clear understanding of who these users are and how they might use smart home technologies is missing from a field being overwhelmingly pushed by technology developers. Through a systematic analysis of peer-reviewed literature on smart homes and their users, this paper takes stock of the dominant research themes and the linkages and disconnects between them. Key findings within each of nine themes are analysed, grouped into three: (1) views of the smart home-functional, instrumental, socio-technical; (2) users and the use of the smart home-prospective users, interactions and decisions, using technologies in the home; and (3) challenges for realising the smart home-hardware and software, design, domestication. These themes are integrated into an organising framework for future research that identifies the presence or absence of cross-cutting relationships between different understandings of smart homes and their users. The usefulness of the organising framework is illustrated in relation to two major concerns-privacy and control-that have been narrowly interpreted to date, precluding deeper insights and potential solutions. Future research on smart homes and their users can benefit by exploring and developing cross-cutting relationships between the research themes identified

    Alpha-particle-induced complex chromosome exchanges transmitted through extra-thymic lymphopoiesis in vitro show evidence of emerging genomic instability

    Get PDF
    Human exposure to high-linear energy transfer α-particles includes environmental (e.g. radon gas and its decay progeny), medical (e.g. radiopharmaceuticals) and occupational (nuclear industry) sources. The associated health risks of α-particle exposure for lung cancer are well documented however the risk estimates for leukaemia remain uncertain. To further our understanding of α-particle effects in target cells for leukaemogenesis and also to seek general markers of individual exposure to α-particles, this study assessed the transmission of chromosomal damage initially-induced in human haemopoietic stem and progenitor cells after exposure to high-LET α-particles. Cells surviving exposure were differentiated into mature T-cells by extra-thymic T-cell differentiation in vitro. Multiplex fluorescence in situ hybridisation (M-FISH) analysis of naïve T-cell populations showed the occurrence of stable (clonal) complex chromosome aberrations consistent with those that are characteristically induced in spherical cells by the traversal of a single α-particle track. Additionally, complex chromosome exchanges were observed in the progeny of irradiated mature T-cell populations. In addition to this, newly arising de novo chromosome aberrations were detected in cells which possessed clonal markers of α-particle exposure and also in cells which did not show any evidence of previous exposure, suggesting ongoing genomic instability in these populations. Our findings support the usefulness and reliability of employing complex chromosome exchanges as indicators of past or ongoing exposure to high-LET radiation and demonstrate the potential applicability to evaluate health risks associated with α-particle exposure.This work was supported by the Department of Health, UK. Contract RRX95 (RMA NSDTG)

    Socioeconomic position Is associated with carotid intima-media thickness in mid-childhood: The longitudinal study of Australian children

    Get PDF
    Background: Lower socioeconomic position (SEP) predicts higher cardiovascular risk in adults. Few studies differentiate between neighborhood and family SEP or have repeated measures through childhood, which would inform understanding of potential mechanisms and the timing of interventions. We investigated whether neighborhood and family SEP, measured biennially from ages 0 to 1 year onward, was associated with carotid intima-media thickness (IMT) at ages 11 to 12 years.Methods and Results: Data were obtained from 1477 families participating in the Child Health CheckPoint study, nested within the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children. Disadvantaged family and neighborhood SEP was cross-sectionally associated with thicker maximum carotid IMT in separate univariable linear regression models. Associations with family SEP were not attenuated in multivariable analyses, and associations with neighborhood SEP were attenuated only in models adjusted for family SEP. The difference in maximum carotid IMT between the highest and lowest family SEP quartile measured at ages 10 to 11 years was 10.7 Όm (95% CI, 3.4-18.0; P=0.004), adjusted for age, sex, pubertal status, passive smoking exposure, body mass index, blood pressure, and arterial lumen diameter. In longitudinal analyses, family SEP measured as early as age 2 to 3 years was associated with maximum carotid IMT at ages 11 to 12 years (difference between highest and lowest quartile: 8.5 Όm; 95% CI, 1.3-15.8; P=0.02). No associations were observed between SEP and mean carotid IMT.Conclusions: We report a robust association between lower SEP in early childhood and carotid IMT in mid-childhood. Further investigation of mechanisms may inform pediatric cardiovascular risk assessment and prevention strategies

    Socioeconomic Position Is Associated With Carotid Intima-Media Thickness in Mid-Childhood: The Longitudinal Study of Australian Children

    Get PDF
    Background Lower socioeconomic position (SEP) predicts higher cardiovascular risk in adults. Few studies differentiate between neighborhood and family SEP or have repeated measures through childhood, which would inform understanding of potential mechanisms and the timing of interventions. We investigated whether neighborhood and family SEP, measured biennially from ages 0 to 1 year onward, was associated with carotid intima–media thickness (IMT) at ages 11 to 12 years.Methods and Results Data were obtained from 1477 families participating in the Child Health CheckPoint study, nested within the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children. Disadvantaged family and neighborhood SEP was cross‐sectionally associated with thicker maximum carotid IMT in separate univariable linear regression models. Associations with family SEP were not attenuated in multivariable analyses, and associations with neighborhood SEP were attenuated only in models adjusted for family SEP. The difference in maximum carotid IMT between the highest and lowest family SEP quartile measured at ages 10 to 11 years was 10.7 Όm (95% CI, 3.4–18.0; P=0.004), adjusted for age, sex, pubertal status, passive smoking exposure, body mass index, blood pressure, and arterial lumen diameter. In longitudinal analyses, family SEP measured as early as age 2 to 3 years was associated with maximum carotid IMT at ages 11 to 12 years (difference between highest and lowest quartile: 8.5 Όm; 95% CI, 1.3–15.8; P=0.02). No associations were observed between SEP and mean carotid IMT.Conclusions We report a robust association between lower SEP in early childhood and carotid IMT in mid‐childhood. Further investigation of mechanisms may inform pediatric cardiovascular risk assessment and prevention strategies.</ul

    Vascular function assessed with cardiovascular magnetic resonance predicts survival in patients with advanced chronic kidney disease

    Get PDF
    <p>Abstract</p> <p>Background</p> <p>Increased arterial stiffness is associated with mortality in patients with chronic kidney disease. Cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) permits assessment of the central arteries to measure aortic function.</p> <p>Methods</p> <p>We studied the relationship between central haemodynamics and outcome using CMR in 144 chronic kidney disease patients with estimated glomerular filtration rate <15 ml/min (110 on dialysis). Aortic distensibilty and volumetric arterial strain were calculated from cross sectional aortic volume and pulse pressure measured during the scan.</p> <p>Results</p> <p>Median follow up after the scan was 24 months. There were no significant differences in aortic distensibilty or aortic volumetric arterial strain between pre-dialysis and dialysis patients. Aortic distensibilty and volumetric arterial strain negatively correlated with age. Aortic distensibilty and volumetric arterial strain were lower in diabetics, patients with ischaemic heart disease and peripheral vascular disease. During follow up there were 20 deaths. Patients who died had lower aortic distensibilty than survivors. In a survival analysis, diabetes, systolic blood pressure and aortic distensibilty were independent predictors of mortality. There were 12 non-fatal cardiovascular events during follow up. Analysing the combined end point of death or a vascular event, diabetes, aortic distensibilty and volumetric arterial strain were predictors of events.</p> <p>Conclusion</p> <p>Deranged vascular function measured with CMR correlates with cardiovascular risk factors and predicts outcome. CMR measures of vascular function are potential targets for interventions to reduce cardiovascular risk.</p

    Measuring health-related quality of life for child maltreatment: a systematic literature review

    Get PDF
    <p>Abstract</p> <p>Background</p> <p>Child maltreatment causes substantial morbidity and mortality in the U.S. Morbidity associated with child maltreatment can reduce health-related quality of life. Accurately measuring the reduction in quality of life associated with child maltreatment is essential to the economic evaluation of educational programs and interventions to reduce the incidence of child maltreatment. The objective of this study was to review the literature for existing approaches and instruments for measuring quality-of-life for child maltreatment outcomes.</p> <p>Methods</p> <p>We reviewed the current literature to identify current approaches to valuing child maltreatment outcomes for economic evaluations. We also reviewed available preference-based generic QOL instruments (EQ-5D, HUI, QWB, SF-6D) for appropriateness in measuring change in quality of life due to child maltreatment.</p> <p>Results</p> <p>We did not identify any studies that directly evaluated quality-of-life in maltreated children. We identified 4 studies that evaluated quality of life for adult survivors of child maltreatment and 8 studies that measured quality-of-life for pediatric injury not related to child maltreatment. No study reported quality-of-life values for children younger than age 3.</p> <p>Currently available preference-based QOL instruments (EQ-5D, HUI, QWB, SF-6D) have been developed primarily for adults with the exception of the Health Utilities Index. These instruments do not include many of the domains identified as being important in capturing changes in quality of life for child maltreatment, such as potential for growth and development or psychological sequelae specific to maltreatment.</p> <p>Conclusion</p> <p>Recommendations for valuing preference-based quality-of-life for child maltreatment will vary by developmental level and type of maltreatment. In the short-term, available multi-attribute utility instruments should be considered in the context of the type of child maltreatment being measured. However, if relevant domains are not included in existing instruments or if valuing health for children less than 6 years of age, direct valuation with a proxy respondent is recommended. The choice of a proxy respondent is not clear in the case of child maltreatment since the parent may not be a suitable proxy. Adult survivors should be considered as appropriate proxies. Longer-term research should focus on identifying the key domains for measuring child health and the development of preference-based quality-of-life instruments that are appropriate for valuing child maltreatment outcomes.</p

    Clinical Psychologists’ Firearm Risk Management Perceptions and Practices

    Get PDF
    The purpose of this study was to investigate the current perceptions and practices of discussing firearm risk management with patients diagnosed with selected mental health problems. A three-wave survey was mailed to a national random sample of clinical psychologists and 339 responded (62%). The majority (78.5%) believed firearm safety issues were greater among those with mental health problems. However, the majority of clinical psychologists did not have a routine system for identifying patients with access to firearms (78.2%). Additionally, the majority (78.8%) reported they did not routinely chart or keep a record of whether patients owned or had access to firearms. About one-half (51.6%) of the clinical psychologists reported they would initiate firearm safety counseling if the patients were assessed as at risk for self-harm or harm to others. Almost half (46%) of clinical psychologists reported not receiving any information on firearm safety issues. Thus, the findings of this study suggest that a more formal role regarding anticipatory guidance on firearms is needed in the professional training of clinical psychologists

    Jet energy measurement with the ATLAS detector in proton-proton collisions at root s=7 TeV

    Get PDF
    The jet energy scale and its systematic uncertainty are determined for jets measured with the ATLAS detector at the LHC in proton-proton collision data at a centre-of-mass energy of √s = 7TeV corresponding to an integrated luminosity of 38 pb-1. Jets are reconstructed with the anti-kt algorithm with distance parameters R=0. 4 or R=0. 6. Jet energy and angle corrections are determined from Monte Carlo simulations to calibrate jets with transverse momenta pT≄20 GeV and pseudorapidities {pipe}η{pipe}<4. 5. The jet energy systematic uncertainty is estimated using the single isolated hadron response measured in situ and in test-beams, exploiting the transverse momentum balance between central and forward jets in events with dijet topologies and studying systematic variations in Monte Carlo simulations. The jet energy uncertainty is less than 2. 5 % in the central calorimeter region ({pipe}η{pipe}<0. 8) for jets with 60≀pT<800 GeV, and is maximally 14 % for pT<30 GeV in the most forward region 3. 2≀{pipe}η{pipe}<4. 5. The jet energy is validated for jet transverse momenta up to 1 TeV to the level of a few percent using several in situ techniques by comparing a well-known reference such as the recoiling photon pT, the sum of the transverse momenta of tracks associated to the jet, or a system of low-pT jets recoiling against a high-pT jet. More sophisticated jet calibration schemes are presented based on calorimeter cell energy density weighting or hadronic properties of jets, aiming for an improved jet energy resolution and a reduced flavour dependence of the jet response. The systematic uncertainty of the jet energy determined from a combination of in situ techniques is consistent with the one derived from single hadron response measurements over a wide kinematic range. The nominal corrections and uncertainties are derived for isolated jets in an inclusive sample of high-pT jets. Special cases such as event topologies with close-by jets, or selections of samples with an enhanced content of jets originating from light quarks, heavy quarks or gluons are also discussed and the corresponding uncertainties are determined. © 2013 CERN for the benefit of the ATLAS collaboration

    Measurement of the inclusive and dijet cross-sections of b-jets in pp collisions at sqrt(s) = 7 TeV with the ATLAS detector