2,376 research outputs found

    Implementation of Cali's food system profile as a pedagogical tool for environmental awareness raising

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    Education in schools can be a key driver for the rescue of the planet and its sustainability, without sacrificing progress. Education that teaches students to understand their active role in these processes, a sustainable use of natural resources, healthy food habits and critical and responsible consumption. This is a pilot test that takes food as a central theme, generating different cross-cutting activities to generate applied knowledge in students, greater awareness of its environmental, socioeconomic and health impacts, and the development of a critical and vindicating spirit in the face of ecological and social problems and the promotion of responsibility and collaboration for their solution

    On the inverse Compton scattering model of radio pulsars

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    Some characteristics of the inverse Compton scattering (ICS) model are reviewed. At least the following properties of radio pulsars can be reproduced in the model: core or central emission beam, one or two hollow emission cones, different emission heights of these components, diverse pulse profiles at various frequencies, linear and circular polarization features of core and cones.Comment: 5 pages, no figures, LaTeX, a proceeding paper for Pacific Rim Conference on Stellar Astrophysics, Aug. 1999, HongKong, Chin

    The value of real-world testing: a qualitative feasibility study to explore staff and organisational barriers and strategies to support implementation of a clinical pathway for the management of anxiety and depression in adult cancer patients.

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    Background: Effective translation of evidence-based research into clinical practice requires assessment of the many factors that can impact implementation success. Research methods that draw on recognised implementation frameworks, such as the Promoting Action Research in Health Services (PARiHS) framework, and that test feasibility to gain information prior to full-scale roll-out, can support a more structured approach to implementation. Objective: This paper presents qualitative findings from a feasibility study in one cancer service of an online portal to operationalise a clinical pathway for the screening, assessment and management of anxiety and depression in adult cancer patients. The aim of this study was to explore staff perspectives on the feasibility and acceptance of a range of strategies to support implementation in order to inform the full-scale roll-out. Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with fifteen hospital staff holding a range of clinical, administrative and managerial roles, and with differing levels of exposure to the pathway. Qualitative data were analysed thematically, and themes were subsequently organised within the constructs of the PARiHS framework. Results: Barriers and facilitators that affected the feasibility of the online portal and implementation strategies were organised across eight key themes: staff perceptions, culture, external influences, attitudes to psychosocial care, intervention fit, familiarity, burden and engagement. These themes mapped to the PARiHS framework's three domains of evidence, context and facilitation. Conclusions: Implementation success may be threatened by a range of factors related to the real-world context, perceptions of the intervention (evidence) and the process by which it is introduced (facilitation). Feasibility testing of implementation strategies can provide unique insights into issues likely to influence full-scale implementation, allowing for early tailoring and more effective facilitation which may save time, money and effort in the long-term. Use of a determinant implementation framework can assist researchers to synthesise and effectively respond to barriers as they arise. While the current feasibility study related to a specific implementation, strategies such as regular engagement with local stakeholders, and discussion of barriers arising in real-time during early testing is likely to be of benefit to all researchers and clinicians seeking to maximise the likelihood of long-term implementation success

    Impact of Scottish smoke-free legislation on smoking quit attempts and prevalence

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    <p><b>Objectives:</b> In Scotland, legislation was implemented in March 2006 prohibiting smoking in all wholly or partially enclosed public spaces. We investigated the impact on attempts to quit smoking and smoking prevalence.</p> <p><b>Methods:</b> We performed time series models using Box-Jenkins autoregressive integrated moving averages (ARIMA) on monthly data on the gross ingredient cost of all nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) prescribed in Scotland in 2003–2009, and quarterly data on self-reported smoking prevalence between January 1999 and September 2010 from the Scottish Household Survey.</p> <p><b>Results:</b> NRT prescription costs were significantly higher than expected over the three months prior to implementation of the legislation. Prescription costs peaked at £1.3 million in March 2006; £292,005.9 (95% CI £260,402.3, £323,609, p<0.001) higher than the monthly norm. Following implementation of the legislation, costs fell exponentially by around 26% per month (95% CI 17%, 35%, p<0.001). Twelve months following implementation, the costs were not significantly different to monthly norms. Smoking prevalence fell by 8.0% overall, from 31.3% in January 1999 to 23.7% in July–September 2010. In the quarter prior to implementation of the legislation, smoking prevalence fell by 1.7% (95% CI 2.4%, 1.0%, p<0.001) more than expected from the underlying trend.</p> <p><b>Conclusions:</b> Quit attempts increased in the three months leading up to Scotland's smoke-free legislation, resulting in a fall in smoking prevalence. However, neither has been sustained suggesting the need for additional tobacco control measures and ongoing support.</p&gt

    A Review of the Evidence Supporting the Taste of Non‐esterified Fatty Acids in Humans

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    Dietary fats contribute to the flavor of foods by multiple mechanisms. A role for their taste has only recently gained credence. Current evidence indicates non‐esterified fatty acids (NEFA) are the effective stimuli for the taste component. CD36 and GPR120 are putative receptors, but may not fully account for the totality of the range of sensations elicited by fatty acids. The sensory quality of long‐chain NEFA is not adequately characterized by commonly accepted taste primary qualities and has been termed oleogustus. There is marked individual variability in sensitivity to the taste of NEFA prompting hypotheses of genetic and environmental determinants. Though an association with BMI has been proposed, the preponderance of evidence is not supportive. The importance of oleogustus has not been fully established, but likely contributes to flavor, which influences food choice as well as lipid metabolism and chronic disease risk. A better understanding of oleogustus may provide insights useful for product formulation

    Remodelling of human atrial K+ currents but not ion channel expression by chronic β-blockade

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    Chronic β-adrenoceptor antagonist (β-blocker) treatment in patients is associated with a potentially anti-arrhythmic prolongation of the atrial action potential duration (APD), which may involve remodelling of repolarising K+ currents. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of chronic β-blockade on transient outward, sustained and inward rectifier K+ currents (ITO, IKSUS and IK1) in human atrial myocytes and on the expression of underlying ion channel subunits. Ion currents were recorded from human right atrial isolated myocytes using the whole-cell-patch clamp technique. Tissue mRNA and protein levels were measured using real time RT-PCR and Western blotting. Chronic β-blockade was associated with a 41% reduction in ITO density: 9.3 ± 0.8 (30 myocytes, 15 patients) vs 15.7 ± 1.1 pA/pF (32, 14), p < 0.05; without affecting its voltage-, time- or rate dependence. IK1 was reduced by 34% at −120 mV (p < 0.05). Neither IKSUS, nor its increase by acute β-stimulation with isoprenaline, was affected by chronic β-blockade. Mathematical modelling suggested that the combination of ITO- and IK1-decrease could result in a 28% increase in APD90. Chronic β-blockade did not alter mRNA or protein expression of the ITO pore-forming subunit, Kv4.3, or mRNA expression of the accessory subunits KChIP2, KChAP, Kvβ1, Kvβ2 or frequenin. There was no reduction in mRNA expression of Kir2.1 or TWIK to account for the reduction in IK1. A reduction in atrial ITO and IK1 associated with chronic β-blocker treatment in patients may contribute to the associated action potential prolongation, and this cannot be explained by a reduction in expression of associated ion channel subunits

    Interpreting the results of patient reported outcome measures in clinical trials: The clinician's perspective

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    This article deals with the problem of interpreting health-related quality of life (HRQL) outcomes in clinical trials. First, we will briefly describe how dichotomization and item response theory can facilitate interpretation. Based on examples from the medical literature for the interpretation of HRQL scores we will show that dichotomies may help clinicians understand information provided by HRQL instruments in RCTs. They can choose thresholds to calculate proportions of patients benefiting based on absolute scores or change scores. For example, clinicians interpreting clinical trial results could consider the difference in the proportion of patients who achieve a mean score of 50 before and after an intervention on a scale from 1 to 100. For the change score approach, they could consider the proportion of patients who have changed by a score of 5 or more. Finally, they can calculate the proportion of patients benefiting and transform these numbers into a number needed to treat or natural frequencies. Second, we will describe in more detail an approach to the interpretation of HRQL scores based on the minimal important difference (MID) and proportions. The MID is the smallest difference in score in the outcome of interest that informed patients or informed proxies perceive as important, either beneficial or harmful, and that would lead the patient or clinician to consider a change in the management. Any change in management will depend on the downsides, including cost and inconvenience, associated with the intervention. Investigators can help with the interpretation of HRQL scores by determining the MID of an HRQL instrument and provide mean differences in relation to the MID. For instance, for an MID of 0.5 on a seven point scale investigators could provide the mean change on the instrument as well as the proportion of patients with scores greater than the MID. Thus, there are several steps investigators can take to facilitate this process to help bringing HRQL information closer to the bedside

    Residential mobility during pregnancy in the north of England

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    <p>Abstract</p> <p>Background</p> <p>Many epidemiological studies assign exposure to an individual's residence at a single time point, such as birth or death. This approach makes no allowance for migration and may result in exposure error, leading to reduced study power and biased risk estimates. Pregnancy outcomes are less susceptible to this bias, however data from North American populations indicate that pregnant women are a highly mobile group. We assessed mobility in pregnant women in the north of England using data from the Northern Congenital Abnormality Survey (NorCAS).</p> <p>Methods</p> <p>Data were extracted from NorCAS for 1985 to 2003. Eligible cases had a gestational age at delivery of ≥ 24 weeks (a viable delivery) (n = 11 559). We assessed mobility between booking appointment (average gestational age 13 weeks) and delivery for pregnancies where the address at booking appointment and delivery were known. The impacts on mobility of maternal age and area-level socio-economic indicators were explored using standard descriptive statistics. A sensitivity analysis and a small validation exercise were undertaken to assess the impact of missing data on the estimate of mobility.</p> <p>Results</p> <p>Out of 7 919 eligible cases for whom addresses at booking and delivery were known, 705 (8.9% (95% CI 8.3 - 9.5)) moved between booking and delivery; the mean and median moving distance was 9.7 and 1.4 km respectively. Movers were significantly younger (25.4 versus 27.3 years, p < 0.01) and lived in more deprived areas (index of multiple deprivation score 38.3 versus 33.7, p < 0.01) than non movers.</p> <p>Conclusion</p> <p>Mobility in the north of England (9%) is considerably lower than that reported in North America and the only other study from the UK (23%). Consistent with other studies, mobility was related to maternal age and socio-economic status, and the majority of moves were over a relatively short distance. Although this population appears relatively stable, the mobility we have observed may still introduce misclassification or error into an exposure assessment relying solely on postcode at delivery, and migration should still therefore be considered a potential source of bias in future studies.</p