40 research outputs found

    How do you Create a Culture Where All Employees Take Accountability for Decision Making?

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    “Organizational scholars and practitioners alike have argued that if organizations are to flourish in the volatile global environment and meet the concomitant challenges of geographic dispersion, electronic collaboration, and cultural diversity, they must become more knowledge intensive, decentralized, participative, adaptive, flexible, efficient and responsive to rapid change.“ Based on research, I have found that this can be achieved through methods of increasing employee participation and empowering more employees to make decisions

    Novel Genetic Variants for Cartilage Thickness and Hip Osteoarthritis

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    Osteoarthritis is one of the most frequent and disabling diseases of the elderly. Only few genetic variants have been identified for osteoarthritis, which is partly due to large phenotype heterogeneity. To reduce heterogeneity, we here examined cartilage thickness, one of the structural components of joint health. We conducted a genome-wide association study of minimal joint space width (mJSW), a proxy for cartilage thickness, in a discovery set of 13,013 participants from five different cohorts and replication in 8,227 individuals from seven independent cohorts. We identified five genome-wide significant (GWS, P≤5·0×10−8) SNPs annotated to four distinct loci. In addition, we found two additional loci that were significantly replicated, but results of combined meta-analysis fell just below the genome wide significance threshold. The four novel associated genetic loci were located in/near TGFA (rs2862851), PIK3R1 (rs10471753), SLBP/FGFR3 (rs2236995), and TREH/DDX6 (rs49654

    Behavioural indicators of welfare in farmed fish

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    Behaviour represents a reaction to the environment as fish perceive it and is therefore a key element of fish welfare. This review summarises the main findings on how behavioural changes have been used to assess welfare in farmed fish, using both functional and feeling-based approaches. Changes in foraging behaviour, ventilatory activity, aggression, individual and group swimming behaviour, stereotypic and abnormal behaviour have been linked with acute and chronic stressors in aquaculture and can therefore be regarded as likely indicators of poor welfare. On the contrary, measurements of exploratory behaviour, feed anticipatory activity and reward-related operant behaviour are beginning to be considered as indicators of positive emotions and welfare in fish. Despite the lack of scientific agreement about the existence of sentience in fish, the possibility that they are capable of both positive and negative emotions may contribute to the development of new strategies (e. g. environmental enrichment) to promote good welfare. Numerous studies that use behavioural indicators of welfare show that behavioural changes can be interpreted as either good or poor welfare depending on the fish species. It is therefore essential to understand the species-specific biology before drawing any conclusions in relation to welfare. In addition, different individuals within the same species may exhibit divergent coping strategies towards stressors, and what is tolerated by some individuals may be detrimental to others. Therefore, the assessment of welfare in a few individuals may not represent the average welfare of a group and vice versa. This underlines the need to develop on-farm, operational behavioural welfare indicators that can be easily used to assess not only the individual welfare but also the welfare of the whole group (e. g. spatial distribution). With the ongoing development of video technology and image processing, the on-farm surveillance of behaviour may in the near future represent a low-cost, noninvasive tool to assess the welfare of farmed fish.Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia, Portugal [SFRH/BPD/42015/2007]info:eu-repo/semantics/publishedVersio

    BHPR research: qualitative1. Complex reasoning determines patients' perception of outcome following foot surgery in rheumatoid arhtritis

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    Background: Foot surgery is common in patients with RA but research into surgical outcomes is limited and conceptually flawed as current outcome measures lack face validity: to date no one has asked patients what is important to them. This study aimed to determine which factors are important to patients when evaluating the success of foot surgery in RA Methods: Semi structured interviews of RA patients who had undergone foot surgery were conducted and transcribed verbatim. Thematic analysis of interviews was conducted to explore issues that were important to patients. Results: 11 RA patients (9 ♂, mean age 59, dis dur = 22yrs, mean of 3 yrs post op) with mixed experiences of foot surgery were interviewed. Patients interpreted outcome in respect to a multitude of factors, frequently positive change in one aspect contrasted with negative opinions about another. Overall, four major themes emerged. Function: Functional ability & participation in valued activities were very important to patients. Walking ability was a key concern but patients interpreted levels of activity in light of other aspects of their disease, reflecting on change in functional ability more than overall level. Positive feelings of improved mobility were often moderated by negative self perception ("I mean, I still walk like a waddling duck”). Appearance: Appearance was important to almost all patients but perhaps the most complex theme of all. Physical appearance, foot shape, and footwear were closely interlinked, yet patients saw these as distinct separate concepts. Patients need to legitimize these feelings was clear and they frequently entered into a defensive repertoire ("it's not cosmetic surgery; it's something that's more important than that, you know?”). Clinician opinion: Surgeons' post operative evaluation of the procedure was very influential. The impact of this appraisal continued to affect patients' lasting impression irrespective of how the outcome compared to their initial goals ("when he'd done it ... he said that hasn't worked as good as he'd wanted to ... but the pain has gone”). Pain: Whilst pain was important to almost all patients, it appeared to be less important than the other themes. Pain was predominately raised when it influenced other themes, such as function; many still felt the need to legitimize their foot pain in order for health professionals to take it seriously ("in the end I went to my GP because it had happened a few times and I went to an orthopaedic surgeon who was quite dismissive of it, it was like what are you complaining about”). Conclusions: Patients interpret the outcome of foot surgery using a multitude of interrelated factors, particularly functional ability, appearance and surgeons' appraisal of the procedure. While pain was often noted, this appeared less important than other factors in the overall outcome of the surgery. Future research into foot surgery should incorporate the complexity of how patients determine their outcome Disclosure statement: All authors have declared no conflicts of interes

    Evaluating the Effects of SARS-CoV-2 Spike Mutation D614G on Transmissibility and Pathogenicity.

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    Global dispersal and increasing frequency of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein variant D614G are suggestive of a selective advantage but may also be due to a random founder effect. We investigate the hypothesis for positive selection of spike D614G in the United Kingdom using more than 25,000 whole genome SARS-CoV-2 sequences. Despite the availability of a large dataset, well represented by both spike 614 variants, not all approaches showed a conclusive signal of positive selection. Population genetic analysis indicates that 614G increases in frequency relative to 614D in a manner consistent with a selective advantage. We do not find any indication that patients infected with the spike 614G variant have higher COVID-19 mortality or clinical severity, but 614G is associated with higher viral load and younger age of patients. Significant differences in growth and size of 614G phylogenetic clusters indicate a need for continued study of this variant

    Genome-wide association study identifies six new loci influencing pulse pressure and mean arterial pressure.

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    Numerous genetic loci have been associated with systolic blood pressure (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) in Europeans. We now report genome-wide association studies of pulse pressure (PP) and mean arterial pressure (MAP). In discovery (N = 74,064) and follow-up studies (N = 48,607), we identified at genome-wide significance (P = 2.7 × 10(-8) to P = 2.3 × 10(-13)) four new PP loci (at 4q12 near CHIC2, 7q22.3 near PIK3CG, 8q24.12 in NOV and 11q24.3 near ADAMTS8), two new MAP loci (3p21.31 in MAP4 and 10q25.3 near ADRB1) and one locus associated with both of these traits (2q24.3 near FIGN) that has also recently been associated with SBP in east Asians. For three of the new PP loci, the estimated effect for SBP was opposite of that for DBP, in contrast to the majority of common SBP- and DBP-associated variants, which show concordant effects on both traits. These findings suggest new genetic pathways underlying blood pressure variation, some of which may differentially influence SBP and DBP

    Evaluating the Effects of SARS-CoV-2 Spike Mutation D614G on Transmissibility and Pathogenicity

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    Global dispersal and increasing frequency of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein variant D614G are suggestive of a selective advantage but may also be due to a random founder effect. We investigate the hypothesis for positive selection of spike D614G in the United Kingdom using more than 25,000 whole genome SARS-CoV-2 sequences. Despite the availability of a large dataset, well represented by both spike 614 variants, not all approaches showed a conclusive signal of positive selection. Population genetic analysis indicates that 614G increases in frequency relative to 614D in a manner consistent with a selective advantage. We do not find any indication that patients infected with the spike 614G variant have higher COVID-19 mortality or clinical severity, but 614G is associated with higher viral load and younger age of patients. Significant differences in growth and size of 614G phylogenetic clusters indicate a need for continued study of this variant

    SARS-CoV-2 Omicron is an immune escape variant with an altered cell entry pathway

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    Vaccines based on the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2 are a cornerstone of the public health response to COVID-19. The emergence of hypermutated, increasingly transmissible variants of concern (VOCs) threaten this strategy. Omicron (B.1.1.529), the fifth VOC to be described, harbours multiple amino acid mutations in spike, half of which lie within the receptor-binding domain. Here we demonstrate substantial evasion of neutralization by Omicron BA.1 and BA.2 variants in vitro using sera from individuals vaccinated with ChAdOx1, BNT162b2 and mRNA-1273. These data were mirrored by a substantial reduction in real-world vaccine effectiveness that was partially restored by booster vaccination. The Omicron variants BA.1 and BA.2 did not induce cell syncytia in vitro and favoured a TMPRSS2-independent endosomal entry pathway, these phenotypes mapping to distinct regions of the spike protein. Impaired cell fusion was determined by the receptor-binding domain, while endosomal entry mapped to the S2 domain. Such marked changes in antigenicity and replicative biology may underlie the rapid global spread and altered pathogenicity of the Omicron variant

    31st Annual Meeting and Associated Programs of the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC 2016) : part two