1,070 research outputs found

    Developmental trends in voice onset time: some evidence for sex differences

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    This study reports on an investigation into the voice onset time (VOT) patterns of the plosives /p b t d/ in a group of 30 children aged 7 (n = 10), 9 (n = 10) and 11 (n = 10) years. Equal numbers of girls and boys participated in the study. Each child named a series of letter objects to elicit /p b t d/ in a syllable onset position with a fixed vowel context. VOT data were examined for age, sex and plosive differences with the following hypotheses: Firstly, that there would be sex differences in the VOT patterns of preadolescent children. Secondly, that the sex differences in VOT patterns would be linked to age and development, and that these would eventually become marked by the age of 11 years, by which time adult-like VOT values should have been achieved. Finally, that the extent of sex and age differences would be dependent upon the plosive being investigated. Results indicated patterns of decrease with age in the VOT values of /p b/ for the boys, with some evidence of increases in the VOT values of /t/ for the girls. In addition, 'voiced' and 'voiceless' cognates showed a more marked bimodal distribution in the girls' VOT patterns. This bimodal distribution was investigated by examining the degree of difference between the VOT values of voiced and voiceless cognate pairs /p b/ and /t d/, and examining the effects of age, sex and cognate pair. These results indicated that more marked sex differences in the 'voiced'/'voiceless' contrast emerged between the data of the 9- and 11-year-olds, a pattern, which was more marked for the alveolar plosives. These preliminary results confirmed all three hypotheses. The findings are presented and discussed both within a developmental and sociophonetic framework

    DNA Double-Strand Breakage as an Endpoint to Examine Metal and Radionuclide Exposure Effects to Water Snakes on a Nuclear Industrial Site

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    This study examined metal levels (especially U and Ni) in the tail tissues of water snakes from contaminated (Tim’s Branch) and reference areas on the Department of Energy’s Savannah River Site (SRS). Home ranges of snakes were quantified to determine the ratio of the habitat that they use in relation to the contaminated areas to better estimate exposure Compared to conventional methods that do not. The exposure assessment indicated that water snakes in the contaminated areas could expect U exposure at 3–4 orders of magnitude greater than the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry’sMinimum Risk Level (MRL) from ingestion of amphibians and fish. Ni and U, in addition to Se, Mn, and Cu, were related to increased DNA double-strand breakage (DDSB) in water snakes.We report burdens for each metal individually, but the results of the DDSB indicated that these metals did not behave independently, but as a suite. If we did not have a secondary endpoint (DDSB), we might have assumed from the exposure predictions and tissue burden analyses that U was the sole metal of concern to water snakes in Tim’s Branch. These data also imply that these toxicants do not biomagnify at the spatial and temporal scale of this study

    Variceal Hemorrhage and Adverse Liver Outcomes in Patients With Cystic Fibrosis Cirrhosis

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    OBJECTIVES: Cirrhosis occurs in 5% to 10% of cystic fibrosis (CF) patients, often accompanied by portal hypertension. We analyzed 3 adverse liver outcomes, variceal bleeding (VB), liver transplant (LT), and liver-related death (LD), and risk factors for these in CF Foundation Patient Registry subjects with reported cirrhosis. METHODS: We determined 10-year incidence rates for VB, LT, LD, and all-cause mortality (ACM), and examined risk factors using competing risk models and Cox-proportional hazard regression. RESULTS: From 2003 to 2012, 943 participants (41% females, mean age 18.1 years) had newly reported cirrhosis; 24.7% required insulin, 85% had previous pseudomonas. Seventy-three subjects had reported VB: 38 with first VB and new cirrhosis reported simultaneously and 35 with VB after cirrhosis report. Ten-year cumulative VB, LT, and LD rates were 6.6% (95% confidence interval [CI]: 4.0, 9.1%), 9.9% (95% CI: 6.6%, 13.2%), and 6.9% (95% CI: 4.0%, 9.8%), respectively, with an ACM of 39.2% (95% CI: 30.8, 36.6%). ACM was not increased in subjects with VB compared to those without (hazard ratio [HR] 1.10, 95% CI: 0.59, 2.08). CF-related diabetes (HR: 3.141, 95% CI:1.56, 6.34) and VB (HR: 4.837, 95% CI: 2.33, 10.0) were associated with higher LT risk, whereas only worse lung function was associated with increased LD in multivariate analysis. Death rate among subjects with VB was 24% with LT and 20.4% with native liver. CONCLUSIONS: VB is an uncommon complication of CF cirrhosis and can herald the diagnosis, but does not affect ACM. Adverse liver outcomes and ACM are frequent by 10 years after cirrhosis report

    Cerebellar c9RAN proteins associate with clinical and neuropathological characteristics of C9ORF72 repeat expansion carriers.

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    Clinical and neuropathological characteristics associated with G4C2 repeat expansions in chromosome 9 open reading frame 72 (C9ORF72), the most common genetic cause of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and frontotemporal dementia, are highly variable. To gain insight on the molecular basis for the heterogeneity among C9ORF72 mutation carriers, we evaluated associations between features of disease and levels of two abundantly expressed "c9RAN proteins" produced by repeat-associated non-ATG (RAN) translation of the expanded repeat. For these studies, we took a departure from traditional immunohistochemical approaches and instead employed immunoassays to quantitatively measure poly(GP) and poly(GA) levels in cerebellum, frontal cortex, motor cortex, and/or hippocampus from 55 C9ORF72 mutation carriers [12 patients with ALS, 24 with frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD) and 19 with FTLD with motor neuron disease (FTLD-MND)]. We additionally investigated associations between levels of poly(GP) or poly(GA) and cognitive impairment in 15 C9ORF72 ALS patients for whom neuropsychological data were available. Among the neuroanatomical regions investigated, poly(GP) levels were highest in the cerebellum. In this same region, associations between poly(GP) and both neuropathological and clinical features were detected. Specifically, cerebellar poly(GP) levels were significantly lower in patients with ALS compared to patients with FTLD or FTLD-MND. Furthermore, cerebellar poly(GP) associated with cognitive score in our cohort of 15 patients. In the cerebellum, poly(GA) levels similarly trended lower in the ALS subgroup compared to FTLD or FTLD-MND subgroups, but no association between cerebellar poly(GA) and cognitive score was detected. Both cerebellar poly(GP) and poly(GA) associated with C9ORF72 variant 3 mRNA expression, but not variant 1 expression, repeat size, disease onset, or survival after onset. Overall, these data indicate that cerebellar abnormalities, as evidenced by poly(GP) accumulation, associate with neuropathological and clinical phenotypes, in particular cognitive impairment, of C9ORF72 mutation carriers

    Impact of progressive familial intrahepatic cholestasis on caregivers: caregiver-reported outcomes from the multinational PICTURE study.

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    From Europe PMC via Jisc Publications RouterHistory: ppub 2022-02-01, epub 2022-02-02Publication status: PublishedFunder: Albireo Pharma, Inc.BackgroundProgressive familial intrahepatic cholestasis (PFIC) is a spectrum of rare genetic diseases characterized by inadequate bile secretion that requires substantial ongoing care, though little research is published in this area. We report health-related quality of life (HRQoL) and work productivity outcomes from the retrospective, cross-sectional PICTURE study investigating the burden of PFIC on caregivers. Information from caregivers of patients with PFIC 1 or 2 in Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States from September 2020 to March 2021 was included.ResultsThe PICTURE study sample comprised HRQoL responses from 22 PFIC caregivers. Patients were on average 8.2 years old; most caregivers were 30-49 years old (68%) and mothers (77%). Median CarerQoL-7D score was 67.7/100; mean CarerQoL-VAS score for general happiness was 5.7/10 (SD 2.1). Most caregivers reported fulfilment in their caregiving responsibilities, but problems with mental and physical health, finances, and relationships. When stratified by patient's PFIC type, mean CarerQoL-7D and CarerQoL-VAS scores suggested worse HRQoL outcomes with PFIC2 versus PFIC1 (59.4 vs. 71.2, and 5.3 vs. 6.5, respectively). Additionally, more caregivers reported impact on sleep in the PFIC2 versus PFIC1 subgroup (93% vs. 75%). When stratified by history of PFIC-related surgeries, mean CarerQoL-7D and VAS scores were higher among those whose children had no specified surgeries (67.7 vs. 59.0/100 and 6.2 vs. 5.2/10, respectively). Nearly all caregivers reported an impact of caregiving responsibilities on sleeping (86%) and on personal relationships (82%). No caregivers reported having formal care support. Most caregivers were employed (73%); a third reported mean productivity loss of 12.9 days (SD 19.3) over the last 3 months, and a mean of 2.8 (SD 9.5) missed years of employment during their career. A higher number of workdays were missed by PFIC 2 caregivers compared to PFIC1 over last 3 months (16 days vs. 3 days).ConclusionsThe PICTURE study has demonstrated the prevalent, comprehensive, and meaningful burden that caring for an individual with PFIC has on caregivers. Despite fulfilment from caregiving, the breadth and depth of these responsibilities reduced caregiver reported HRQoL including mental and physical health, productivity, career prospects, sleep, relationships and finances

    Reduced LIMK2 expression in colorectal cancer reflects its role in limiting stem cell proliferation

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    Objective: Colorectal cancer (CRC) is a major contributor to cancer mortality and morbidity. LIM kinase 2 (LIMK2) promotes tumour cell invasion and metastasis. The objectives of this study were to determine how LIMK2 expression is associated with CRC progression and patient outcome, and to use genetically modified Drosophila and mice to determine how LIMK2 deletion affects gastrointestinal stem cell regulation and tumour development.<p></p> Design: LIMK2 expression and activity were measured by immunostaining tumours from CRC-prone mice, human CRC cell lines and 650 human tumours. LIMK knockdown in Drosophila or Limk2 deletion in mice allowed for assessment of their contributions to gastrointestinal stem cell homeostasis and tumour development.<p></p> Results: LIMK2 expression was reduced in intestinal tumours of cancer-prone mice, as well as in human CRC cell lines and tumours. Reduced LIMK2 expression and substrate phosphorylation were associated with shorter patient survival. Genetic analysis in Drosophila midgut and intestinal epithelial cells isolated from genetically modified mice revealed a conserved role for LIMK2 in constraining gastrointestinal stem cell proliferation. Limk2 deletion increased colon tumour size in a colitis-associated colorectal mouse cancer model.<p></p> Conclusions: This study revealed that LIMK2 expression and activity progressively decrease with advancing stage, and supports the hypothesis that there is selective pressure for reduced LIMK2 expression in CRC to relieve negative constraints imposed upon gastrointestinal stem cells.<p></p&gt

    Managing hybridization of a recovering endangered species: The red wolf \u3ci\u3eCanis rufus\u3c/i\u3e as a case study

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    Hybridization presents a unique challenge for conservation biologists and managers. While hybridization is an important evolutionary process, hybridization is also a threat formany native species. The endangered species recovery effort for the red wolf Canis rufus is a classic system for understanding and addressing the challenges of hybridization. From 1987‒1993, 63 red wolves were released from captivity in eastern North Carolina, USA, to establish a free-ranging, non-essential experimental population. By 1999, managers recognized hybridization with invasive coyotes Canis latrans was the single greatest threat to successful recovery, and an adaptive management plan was adopted with innovative approaches for managing the threat of hybridization. Here we review the application and results of the adaptive management efforts from 1993 to 2013 by comparing: (1) the numbers of wolves, coyotes, and hybrids captured, (2) the numbers of territorial social groups with presumed breeding capabilities, (3) the number of red wolf and hybrid litters documented each year and (4) the degree of coyote introgression into the wild red wolf gene pool. We documented substantial increases in the number of known red wolves and red wolf social groups from 1987–2004 followed by a plateau and slight decline by 2013.The number of red wolf litters exceeded hybrid litters each year and the proportion of hybrid litters per year averaged 21%. The genetic composition of the wild red wolf population is estimated to include \u3c 4% coyote ancestry from recent introgression since reintroduction. We conclude that the adaptive management plan was effective at reducing the introgression of coyote genes into the red wolf population, but population recovery of red wolves will require continuation of the current management plan, or alternative approaches, for the foreseeable future. More broadly, we discuss the lessons learned from red wolf adaptive management that could assist other endangered species recovery efforts facing the challenge of minimizing hybridizatio
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