973 research outputs found

    Users and Usage of Community Websites: The myhamilton.ca Experience

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    This paper presents research results pertaining to the users and usage of the myhamilton.ca community website. Data collection and analysis occurred during two different phases. The first involved the administration of an online survey and the tracking of website activities of 466 actual end-users in which a unique identification feature linked participants’ website activities with their demographic and personality data. During the second phase, a more detailed online survey asked for self-reports of website usage from 733 end-users. Results from both rounds of data collection suggest that the website provides a valuable service and is superior to traditional methods of information gathering, but there is a need to increase website usage and to reach a broader demographic. Discussion ensues on how managers of myhamilton.ca are actively addressing these concerns via the myhamilton Renovation Project as a means of increasing website utilization

    Desulfovibrio Bacteria Are Associated With Parkinson's Disease

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    Parkinson's disease (PD) is the most prevalent movement disorder known and predominantly affects the elderly. It is a progressive neurodegenerative disease wherein alpha-synuclein, a neuronal protein, aggregates to form toxic structures in nerve cells. The cause of Parkinson's disease (PD) remains unknown. Intestinal dysfunction and changes in the gut microbiota, common symptoms of PD, are evidently linked to the pathogenesis of PD. Although a multitude of studies have investigated microbial etiologies of PD, the microbial role in disease progression remains unclear. Here, we show that Gram-negative sulfate-reducing bacteria of the genus Desulfovibrio may play a potential role in the development of PD. Conventional and quantitative real-time PCR analysis of feces from twenty PD patients and twenty healthy controls revealed that all PD patients harbored Desulfovibrio bacteria in their gut microbiota and these bacteria were present at higher levels in PD patients than in healthy controls. Additionally, the concentration of Desulfovibrio species correlated with the severity of PD. Desulfovibrio bacteria produce hydrogen sulfide and lipopolysaccharide, and several strains synthesize magnetite, all of which likely induce the oligomerization and aggregation of alpha-synuclein protein. The substances originating from Desulfovibrio bacteria likely take part in pathogenesis of PD. These findings may open new avenues for the treatment of PD and the identification of people at risk for developing PD.Peer reviewe

    Complete Genome Sequence of Nisin-Producing Lactococcus lactis subsp. lactis N8

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    We report here the genome sequence of Lactococcus lactis subsp. lactis N8, a nisin producer isolated in the 1960s from a dairy product in Finland. The genome consists of a 2.42-Mb chromosome and two plasmids of 80.3 and 71.3 kb.Peer reviewe

    Short-term bone biochemical response to a single bout of high-impact exercise

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    Bone response to a single bout of exercise can be observed with biochemical markers of bone formation and resorption. The purpose of this study was to examine the response of bone biochemical markers to a single bout of exhaustive high-impact exercise. 15 physically active young subjects volunteered to participate. The subjects performed continuous bilateral jumping with the ankle plantarflexors at 65 % of maximal ground reaction force (GRF) until exhaustion. Loading was characterized by analyzing the GRF recorded for the duration of the exercise. Venous blood samples were taken at baseline, immediately after, 2h and on day 1 and day 2 after the exercise. Procollagen type I amino terminal propeptide (P1NP, marker of bone formation) and carboxyterminal crosslinked telopeptide (CTx, marker of bone resorption) were analyzed from the blood samples. CTx increased significantly (32 %, p = 0.015) two days after the exercise and there was a tendensy towards increase seen in P1NP (p = 0.053) one day after the exercise. A significant positive correlation (r = 0.49 to 0.69, p &le; 0.038) was observed between change in P1NP from baseline to day 1 and exercise variables (maximal slope of acceleration, body weight (BW) adjusted maximal GRF, BW adjusted GRF exercise intensity and osteogenic index). Based on the two biochemical bone turnover markers, it can be concluded that bone turnover is increased in response to a very<br /

    Drug-resistant genotypes and multi-clonality in Plasmodium falciparum analysed by direct genome sequencing from peripheral blood of malaria patients.

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    Naturally acquired blood-stage infections of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum typically harbour multiple haploid clones. The apparent number of clones observed in any single infection depends on the diversity of the polymorphic markers used for the analysis, and the relative abundance of rare clones, which frequently fail to be detected among PCR products derived from numerically dominant clones. However, minority clones are of clinical interest as they may harbour genes conferring drug resistance, leading to enhanced survival after treatment and the possibility of subsequent therapeutic failure. We deployed new generation sequencing to derive genome data for five non-propagated parasite isolates taken directly from 4 different patients treated for clinical malaria in a UK hospital. Analysis of depth of coverage and length of sequence intervals between paired reads identified both previously described and novel gene deletions and amplifications. Full-length sequence data was extracted for 6 loci considered to be under selection by antimalarial drugs, and both known and previously unknown amino acid substitutions were identified. Full mitochondrial genomes were extracted from the sequencing data for each isolate, and these are compared against a panel of polymorphic sites derived from published or unpublished but publicly available data. Finally, genome-wide analysis of clone multiplicity was performed, and the number of infecting parasite clones estimated for each isolate. Each patient harboured at least 3 clones of P. falciparum by this analysis, consistent with results obtained with conventional PCR analysis of polymorphic merozoite antigen loci. We conclude that genome sequencing of peripheral blood P. falciparum taken directly from malaria patients provides high quality data useful for drug resistance studies, genomic structural analyses and population genetics, and also robustly represents clonal multiplicity

    Teacher Training for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders in Finland

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    This chapter first provides a short description of the historical background and development of special education teacher training in Finland. The relationship between special education and teaching pupils with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is covered by chronologically presenting the main events, turning points, publications, and people that have had a significant effect on the education of pupils with ASD in Finland. This is followed by a description of the organization of teacher training, in general, and the particular characteristics of teaching pupils with ASD. In the context of ASD, it is essential to examine questions concerning the link between learning as social practice and the challenges of interaction manifested in learning difficulties. The chapter ends with a description of the continuing teacher education for special education teachers in Finland.Peer reviewe

    Participation in scheduled asthma follow-up contacts and adherence to treatment during 12-year follow-up in patients with adult-onset asthma

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    BACKGROUND: Poor treatment compliance is a common problem in the treatment of asthma. To our knowledge, no previous long-term follow-up studies exist on how scheduled asthma follow-up contacts occur in primary health care (PHC) versus secondary care and how these contacts relate to adherence to medication and in participation to further scheduled asthma contacts. The aim of this study was to evaluate occurrence of scheduled asthma contacts and treatment compliance in PHC versus secondary care, and to identify the factors associated with non-participation to scheduled contacts. METHODS: Patients with new adult-onset asthma (n = 203) were followed for 12 years in a real-life asthma cohort of the Seinäjoki Adult Asthma Study (SAAS). The first contacts were mainly carried out in secondary care and therefore the actual follow-up time including PHC visits was 10 years. RESULTS: A majority (71%) of the patients had ≥ 2 scheduled asthma contacts during 10-year follow-up and most of them (79%) mainly in PHC. Patients with follow-up contacts mainly in PHC had better adherence to inhaled corticosteroid (ICS) medication during the whole 12-year period compared to patients in secondary care. In the study population, 29% of the patients had only 0-1 scheduled asthma contacts during the follow-up. Heavy alcohol consumption predicted poor participation in scheduled contacts. CONCLUSIONS: Patients with mainly PHC scheduled asthma contacts were more adherent to ICS medication than patients in the secondary care. Based on our results it is necessary to pay more attention to actualization of asthma follow-up visits and systematic assessment of asthma patients including evaluation of alcohol consumption. Trial registration Seinäjoki Adult Asthma Study is retrospectively registered at www.ClinicalTrials.gov with identifier number NCT02733016. Registered 11 April 2016.publishedVersionPeer reviewe
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