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Sample records for postnatal environmental factors

  1. Measurement and Associations of Pregnancy Risk Factors with Genetic Influences, Postnatal Environmental Influences, and Toddler Behavior

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marceau, Kristine; Hajal, Nastassia; Leve, Leslie D.; Reiss, David; Shaw, Daniel S.; Ganiban, Jody M.; Mayes, Linda C.; Neiderhiser, Jenae M.

    2013-01-01

    This study demonstrates the unique contributions of perinatal risk and genetic and environmental influences on child behavior using data from 561 domestic US adoption triads (birth mothers, adopted child, and adoptive parents). Findings show distinct patterns of associations among genetic (birth mother psychopathology), prenatal (six maternal

  2. Measurement and Associations of Pregnancy Risk Factors with Genetic Influences, Postnatal Environmental Influences, and Toddler Behavior

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marceau, Kristine; Hajal, Nastassia; Leve, Leslie D.; Reiss, David; Shaw, Daniel S.; Ganiban, Jody M.; Mayes, Linda C.; Neiderhiser, Jenae M.

    2013-01-01

    This study demonstrates the unique contributions of perinatal risk and genetic and environmental influences on child behavior using data from 561 domestic US adoption triads (birth mothers, adopted child, and adoptive parents). Findings show distinct patterns of associations among genetic (birth mother psychopathology), prenatal (six maternal…

  3. Postnatal signalling with homeoprotein transcription factors

    PubMed Central

    Prochiantz, Alain; Fuchs, Julia; Di Nardo, Ariel A.

    2014-01-01

    Homeoprotein (HP) transcription factors were originally identified for their embryonic cell-autonomous developmental functions. In this review, we discuss their postnatal and adult physiological functions based on the study of Otx2, Engrailed-1 and Engrailed-2 (collectively Engrailed). For Engrailed, we discuss its function in the cell-autonomous regulation of ventral midbrain dopaminergic neuron survival and physiology and in the non-cell-autonomous maintenance of axons. For Otx2, we describe how the protein is expressed in the choroid plexus and transported into cortical parvalbumin cells where it regulates plasticity in the visual cortex. These two examples illustrate how the understanding of HP postnatal and adult functions, including signalling functions, may lead to the identification of disease-associated genetic pathways and to the development of original therapeutic strategies. PMID:25135979

  4. Risk factors for antenatal depression, postnatal depression and parenting stress

    PubMed Central

    Leigh, Bronwyn; Milgrom, Jeannette

    2008-01-01

    Background Given that the prevalence of antenatal and postnatal depression is high, with estimates around 13%, and the consequences serious, efforts have been made to identify risk factors to assist in prevention, identification and treatment. Most risk factors associated with postnatal depression have been well researched, whereas predictors of antenatal depression have been less researched. Risk factors associated with early parenting stress have not been widely researched, despite the strong link with depression. The aim of this study was to further elucidate which of some previously identified risk factors are most predictive of three outcome measures: antenatal depression, postnatal depression and parenting stress and to examine the relationship between them. Methods Primipara and multiparae women were recruited antenatally from two major hoitals as part of the beyondblue National Postnatal Depression Program [1]. In this subsidiary study, 367 women completed an additional large battery of validated questionnaires to identify risk factors in the antenatal period at 26–32 weeks gestation. A subsample of these women (N = 161) also completed questionnaires at 10–12 weeks postnatally. Depression level was measured by the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI). Results Regression analyses identified significant risk factors for the three outcome measures. (1). Significant predictors for antenatal depression: low self-esteem, antenatal anxiety, low social support, negative cognitive style, major life events, low income and history of abuse. (2). Significant predictors for postnatal depression: antenatal depression and a history of depression while also controlling for concurrent parenting stress, which was a significant variable. Antenatal depression was identified as a mediator between seven of the risk factors and postnatal depression. (3). Postnatal depression was the only significant predictor for parenting stress and also acted as a mediator for other risk factors. Conclusion Risk factor profiles for antenatal depression, postnatal depression and parenting stress differ but are interrelated. Antenatal depression was the strongest predictor of postnatal depression, and in turn postnatal depression was the strongest predictor for parenting stress. These results provide clinical direction suggesting that early identification and treatment of perinatal depression is important. PMID:18412979

  5. Environmental factors influencing growth and pubertal development.

    PubMed Central

    Delemarre-van de Waal, H A

    1993-01-01

    Postnatal growth is based on hereditary signals and environmental factors in a complex regulatory network. Each factor must be in an optimal state for normal growth of the child. Fetal conditions may also have consequences on postnatal height. Intrauterine growth retardation can be recovered postnatally, although postnatal growth remains depressed in about one-third of cases. After birth, the environment may exert either a positive or negative effect on growth. In underdeveloped countries, malnutrition plays a major role in inhibiting the growth process. Children from families of higher socioeconomic classes are taller than their coevals in the lower socioeconomic groups. Urbanization also has a positive effect on growth. Better child care is supported by sufficient food supply, appropriate health and sanitation services, and a higher level of education. Over the last century, these factors have induced a taller stature and a more rapid maturity in Europe, North America, and Australia; a phenomenon which has been referred to as "the secular trend" in growth. Recently, a secular trend has also been reported in some developing countries. Although urbanization in general appears to be associated with better conditions of living, this is not the case in the slums of South America or in Africa where rural children are better off than children living in the poor cities. This paper describes in more detail the different hereditary and environmental factors that act during the fetal period and postnatally, and which play a role in human growth and pubertal development. PMID:8243404

  6. Association of prenatal maternal or postnatal child environmental tobacco smoke exposure and neurodevelopmental and behavioral problems in children.

    PubMed Central

    Eskenazi, B; Castorina, R

    1999-01-01

    We review the potential neurodevelopmental and behavioral effects of children's prenatal and/or postnatal exposure to environmental tobacco smoke (ETS). Children's exposure to ETS has been assessed in epidemiologic studies as a risk factor for a variety of behavioral and neurodevelopmental problems including reduced general intellectual ability, skills in language and auditory tasks, and academic achievement, and behavioral problems such as hyperactivity and decreased attention spans. We review 17 epidemiologic studies that have attempted to separate the effects of maternal active smoking during pregnancy from passive ETS smoke exposure by the pregnant mother or the child. Based on the available data, we found that ETS exposure could cause subtle changes in children's neurodevelopment and behavior. However, studies to date are difficult to interpret because of the unknown influence of uncontrolled confounding factors, imprecision in measurements of smoking exposure, and collinearity of pre- and postnatal maternal smoking. Although some evidence suggests that maternal smoking during pregnancy may be associated with deficits in intellectual ability and behavioral problems in children, the impact of prenatal or postnatal ETS exposure remains less clear. PMID:10585903

  7. Transcriptional Profiling of Intrinsic PNS Factors in the Postnatal Mouse

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Robin P.; Lerch-Haner, Jessica K.; Pardinas, Jose R.; Buchser, William J.; Bixby, John L.; Lemmon, Vance P.

    2010-01-01

    Neurons in the peripheral nervous system (PNS) display a higher capacity to regenerate after injury than those in the central nervous system, suggesting cell specific transcriptional modules underlying axon growth and inhibition. We report a systems biology based search for PNS specific transcription factors (TFs). Messenger RNAs enriched in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons compared to cerebellar granule neurons (CGNs) were identified using subtractive hybridization and DNA microarray approaches. Network and transcription factor binding site enrichment analyses were used to further identify TFs that may be differentially active. Combining these techniques, we identified 32 TFs likely to be enriched and/or active in the PNS. Twenty-five of these TFs were then tested for an ability to promote CNS neurite outgrowth in an overexpression screen. Real-time PCR and immunohistochemical studies confirmed that one representative TF, STAT3, is intrinsic to PNS neurons, and that constitutively active STAT3 is sufficient to promote CGN neurite outgrowth. PMID:20696251

  8. Environmental factors in Tourette syndrome.

    PubMed

    Hoekstra, Pieter J; Dietrich, Andrea; Edwards, Mark J; Elamin, Ishraga; Martino, Davide

    2013-07-01

    Environmental exposures during the prenatal period, perinatal stages, and postnatal life may contribute to onset and course of Tourette syndrome (TS). Pregnancy-related noxious exposures may be more frequent in pregnancies of children who will develop TS, particularly maternal smoking and prenatal life stressors. Lower birth weight and use of forceps at delivery may be associated with tic severity in the offspring; moreover, low birth weight and maternal smoking during pregnancy may affect the risk of co-morbid attention-deficit/hyperactivity and obsessive-compulsive disorders. Group A streptococcal infections as risk-modifier for TS has not been convincingly demonstrated to date, although an interaction with stressors was suggested. The PANDAS hypothesis is currently undergoing a nosological revision. Only limited anecdotal evidence supports a link of TS to other pathogens. Nevertheless, the relationship between infections and TS may be complex. Recent data point to intrinsically altered immune regulation in TS, which might predispose to both infections and autoimmune mechanisms; however, evidence of cell-mediated and antibody-mediated autoimmunity in TS is still insufficient. Psychosocial stress remains the most important contextual factor influencing tic severity, as confirmed by prospective studies. This might in part be related to enhanced reactivity of the stress response in TS patients, the mechanisms of which need to be explored further. New studies on large prospective cohorts of patients of different age and the identification of reliable biomarkers or endophenotypes indicating early, prenatal exposure to environmental insults are needed. PMID:23092654

  9. Effects of microgravity on myogenic factor expressions during postnatal development of rat skeletal muscle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Inobe, Manabu; Inobe, Ikuko; Adams, Gregory R.; Baldwin, Kenneth M.; Takeda, Shin'Ichi

    2002-01-01

    To clarify the role of gravity in the postnatal development of skeletal muscle, we exposed neonatal rats at 7 days of age to microgravity. After 16 days of spaceflight, tibialis anterior, plantaris, medial gastrocnemius, and soleus muscles were removed from the hindlimb musculature and examined for the expression of MyoD-family transcription factors such as MyoD, myogenin, and MRF4. For this purpose, we established a unique semiquantitative method, based on RT-PCR, using specific primers tagged with infrared fluorescence. The relative expression of MyoD in the tibialis anterior and plantaris muscles and that of myogenin in the plantaris and soleus muscles were significantly reduced (P < 0.001) in the flight animals. In contrast, MRF4 expression was not changed in any muscle. These results suggest that MyoD and myogenin, but not MRF4, are sensitive to gravity-related stimuli in some skeletal muscles during postnatal development.

  10. Postnatal developmental profile of brain-derived neurotrophic factor in rat brain and platelets.

    PubMed

    Karege, Félicien; Schwald, Michèle; Cisse, Mbaye

    2002-08-16

    The brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) has been involved in pre- and postnatal brain development. Moreover, abundant levels of this neurotrophin have been found in animal and human brain and serum. This study was aimed to assess the postnatal change profile of both serum and brain BDNF levels. By using immunoassay and reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction methods, BDNF protein and mRNA levels were determined in serum and platelets, respectively, and in two brain structures (hippocampus and frontal cortex) of postnatal rats (one and three weeks old), young adults (two months old) and in aged animals (two years old). The results showed that brain and serum BDNF levels underwent similar changes during maturation and aging processes (analysis of variance (ANOVA): P<0.001, P<0.001, for hippocampus and serum, respectively). During the same investigation period, the measure of BDNF mRNA indicated gradual changes in the hippocampus but not in platelets (ANOVA: P<0.001 and not significant, for hippocampus and platelets, respectively). Interestingly, there was a positive correlation between serum and cortical BDNF levels (r=0.81, P<0.01), especially in young animals. This study of ontogenic characteristics of BDNF in blood and central nervous system can help to shed more light on the role of platelet BDNF. PMID:12147321

  11. Exposure to colony stimulating factor 2 during preimplantation development increases postnatal growth in cattle.

    PubMed

    Kannampuzha-Francis, Jasmine; Denicol, Anna C; Loureiro, Barbara; Kaniyamattam, Karun; Ortega, M Sofia; Hansen, Peter J

    2015-11-01

    The microenvironment of a preimplantation embryo can influence changes in development that affect postnatal phenotypes. One of the potential mediators of this effect in many species is colony-stimulating factor (CSF2), which can increase an embryo's ability to establish pregnancy after its transfer into recipients. Exposure of embryos to CSF2 during early development can also affect the pattern of development later in pregnancy in a sex-dependent manner. We therefore hypothesized that treatment of in vitro-produced embryos with CSF2 in culture would alter birth weight and postnatal growth of the resultant calf. Body weight and withers height were measured for Holstein heifer calves produced in vitro with or without 10 ng/ml CSF2 and for calves produced by artificial insemination. There were no differences in birth weight between groups; thereafter, however, calves from the CSF2-treated group experienced greater increases in body weight through 13 months of age, with only small differences in withers height. These results support the model that an embryo's postnatal characteristics can be programmed during the preimplantation period, and that CSF2 is one of the embryokines through which programming is directed. Mol. Reprod. Dev. 82: 892-897, 2015. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26227079

  12. Environmental Factors in Autism

    PubMed Central

    Grabrucker, Andreas M.

    2013-01-01

    Autism is a neurodevelopmental disorders characterized by impairments in communication and social behavior, and by repetitive behaviors. Although genetic factors might be largely responsible for the occurrence of autism they cannot fully account for all cases and it is likely that in addition to a certain combination of autism-related genes, specific environmental factors might act as risk factors triggering the development of autism. Thus, the role of environmental factors in autism is an important area of research and recent data will be discussed in this review. Interestingly, the results show that many environmental risk factors are interrelated and their identification and comparison might unveil a common scheme of alterations on a contextual as well as molecular level. For example, both, disruption in the immune system and in zinc homeostasis may affect synaptic transmission in autism. Thus, here, a model is proposed that interconnects the most important and scientifically recognized environmental factors. Moreover, similarities in how these risk factors impact synapse function are discussed and a possible influence on an already well described genetic pathway leading to the development of autism via zinc homeostasis is proposed. PMID:23346059

  13. Developmental role of nuclear factor E2-related factor 2 in mitigating methamphetamine fetal toxicity and postnatal neurodevelopmental deficits.

    PubMed

    Ramkissoon, Annmarie; Wells, Peter G

    2013-12-01

    Nuclear factor E2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) is a transcription factor that mediates protective responses to oxidative stress, but its developmental role is unknown. Herein, we treated pregnant Nrf2-deficient knockout mice with methamphetamine (METH) (5-40 mg/kg ip), which increases fetal reactive oxygen species (ROS) and oxidatively damaged DNA in fetal brain tissue. METH-exposed Nrf2(-/-) fetuses were unable to increase mRNA levels of ROS-protective heme oxygenase-1, NAD(P)H:quinone oxidoreductase, or oxoguanine glycosylase 1, unlike wild-type controls, and exhibited enhanced DNA oxidation, fetal resorption, edema, and reduced fetal weight, with greater toxicity in female Nrf2(-/-) fetuses. Postnatal neurodevelopmental deficits in activity and olfactory function were exacerbated, with gender-dependent differences, and the olfactory bulb GABAergic marker GAD-65 was decreased in Nrf2(-/-) offspring exposed in utero to METH. In utero METH-initiated olfactory deficits may be a sensitive postnatal functional test for long-term neurotoxicity, and indicated a broad fetal role for Nrf2. The results show that fetal Nrf2 deficiency enhances METH-initiated oxidative DNA damage and toxicity, suggesting that Nrf2 activation of cytoprotective proteins mitigates the effects of ROS and their oxidative damage to cellular macromolecules, thereby protecting the developing fetus from adverse structural and postnatal neurodevelopmental consequences. PMID:23932974

  14. [Environmental factors of longevity].

    PubMed

    Christen, Yves

    2003-03-01

    A PROBABLE ROLE: The great increase in life expectancy over the past decades and too short a time lapse for any major genetic mutations to intervene, are arguments in favour of the intervention of environmental factors in longevity. A FAIRLY LONG LIST: Various environmental factors can be envisaged: prenatal environment, pollution, radiation and oncogenic agents, notably tobacco, food (quantitatively and qualitatively), medicinal products, stress, education and socio-professional life style, isolation, number of children and sexual activity, sports and exercising, etc. It is highly likely that all these factors, or at least some of them, have a real effect on longevity, although this is difficult to demonstrate directly. A COMBINED EFFECT: The basic idea of this paper is that these environmental factors should be seen as agents, the effects of which would be combined with those of genetic factors, considered as agents of radically different nature. We suggest that, in order to have any real effect, these environmental factors have to work on the same cell mechanisms as those that affect the genetic process, notably the mechanisms related to oxidative stress and genetic expression. PMID:12712686

  15. Maternal Health Factors as Risks for Postnatal Depression: A Prospective Longitudinal Study

    PubMed Central

    Chojenta, Catherine L.; Lucke, Jayne C.; Forder, Peta M.; Loxton, Deborah J.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose While previous studies have identified a range of potential risk factors for postnatal depression (PND), none have examined a comprehensive set of risk factors at a population-level using data collected prospectively. The aim of this study was to explore the relationship between a range of factors and PND and to construct a model of the predictors of PND. Methods Data came from 5219 women who completed Survey 5 of the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health in 2009 and reported giving birth to a child. Results Over 15% of women reported experiencing PND with at least one of their children. The strongest positive associations were for postnatal anxiety (OR = 13.79,95%CI = 10.48,18.13) and antenatal depression (OR = 9.23,95%CI = 6.10,13.97). Positive associations were also found for history of depression and PND, low SF-36 Mental Health Index, emotional distress during labour, and breastfeeding for less than six months. Conclusions Results indicate that understanding a woman’s mental health history plays an important role in the detection of those who are most vulnerable to PND. Treatment and management of depression and anxiety earlier in life and during pregnancy may have a positive impact on the incidence of PND. PMID:26785131

  16. Connective Tissue Growth Factor Is Required for Skeletal Development and Postnatal Skeletal Homeostasis in Male Mice

    PubMed Central

    Canalis, Ernesto; Zanotti, Stefano; Beamer, Wesley G.; Economides, Aris N.; Smerdel-Ramoya, Anna

    2010-01-01

    Connective tissue growth factor (CTGF), a member of the cysteine-rich 61 (Cyr 61), CTGF, nephroblastoma overexpressed (NOV) (CCN) family of proteins, is synthesized by osteoblasts, and its overexpression inhibits osteoblastogenesis and causes osteopenia. The global inactivation of Ctgf leads to defective endochondral bone formation and perinatal lethality; therefore, the consequences of Ctgf inactivation on the postnatal skeleton are not known. To study the function of CTGF, we generated Ctgf+/LacZ heterozygous null mice and tissue-specific null Ctgf mice by mating Ctgf conditional mice, where Ctgf is flanked by lox sequences with mice expressing the Cre recombinase under the control of the paired-related homeobox gene 1 (Prx1) enhancer (Prx1-Cre) or the osteocalcin promoter (Oc-Cre). Ctgf+/LacZ heterozygous mice exhibited transient osteopenia at 1 month of age secondary to decreased trabecular number. A similar osteopenic phenotype was observed in 1-month-old Ctgf conditional null male mice generated with Prx1-Cre, suggesting that the decreased trabecular number was secondary to impaired endochondral bone formation. In contrast, when the conditional deletion of Ctgf was achieved by Oc-Cre, an osteopenic phenotype was observed only in 6-month-old male mice. Osteoblast and osteoclast number, bone formation, and eroded surface were not affected in Ctgf heterozygous or conditional null mice. In conclusion, CTGF is necessary for normal skeletal development but to a lesser extent for postnatal skeletal homeostasis. PMID:20534727

  17. Prevalence of and factors influencing postnatal depression in a rural community in South Africa

    PubMed Central

    Abrahams, Johanna M.

    2015-01-01

    Background Knowledge about postnatal depression (PND) and associated risk factors which influence the development of PND is vital for early detection, intervention and prevention. Setting The study was conducted in primary health care clinics (PHC) in the Witzenberg subdistrict, a rural community in South Africa. Objectives Objectives of this study were to determine the prevalence of PND and to identify the contributing risk factors associated with PND. Methods A descriptive cross sectional research design with a quantitative approach was applied. The target population was mothers, 18 years and older. A convenience sampling method was used to select a sample of 159 (10%) from a population of 1605 live births. The Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) and Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), two validated self-rating questionnaires, including a questionnaire based on demographical, psychosocial and obstetrical data, were applied. The data was analysed using various statistical tests to determine statistical associations between variables using a 95% confidence interval. Results PND was a serious health problem with 50.3% of the mothers who suffered from PND. A BDI analysis showed that of the participants who had PND, 28.8% was severe, 48.8% moderate and 22.5% mild. Factors influencing the development of PND included most participants (63.5%) were unmarried, 61.3% were unemployed and the majority (53.8%) had a history of a psychiatric illness. Significant associations between PND and unplanned and unwelcome babies (p < 0.01); partner relationship (p < 0.01); were identified. Conclusion Prevention, early detection, appropriate referral and treatment of PND are critical in managing maternal, child and family well-being. PMID:26842515

  18. Antenatal risk factors for postnatal depression: a prospective study of chinese women at maternal and child health centres

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Risk factors for postnatal depression (PND) are under-explored in the Chinese populations. There is increasing recognition of the importance of identifying predictive factors during the antenatal period for PND. The present study aimed to identify the risk factors for postnatal depression in a community cohort of Chinese women with special focus on the antenatal risk factors. Methods Eight hundred and five Chinese women were interviewed during their third trimester of pregnancy and at around 2 months postnatally. Putative risk factors for PND were collected and the diagnosis of PND was confirmed by the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV Axis I Disorders. The 2-month postnatal depression status was used as the dependent variable for univariate and multivariate analyses against putative risk factors. Results Marital dissatisfaction (Relative Risk = 8.27), dissatisfied relationship with mother-in-law (Relative Risk = 3.93), antenatal depressive symptomatology (Relative Risk = 3.90), and anxiety-prone personality (Relative Risk = 2.14) predicted PND in Chinese women independently. Conclusions Chinese women tend to keep their own feelings and emotions and it is important to monitor Chinese pregnant women with these predictive risk factors so that PND can be identified early. PMID:22436053

  19. Factors influencing attempted and completed suicide in postnatal women: A population-based study in Taiwan.

    PubMed

    Weng, Shu-Chuan; Chang, Jung-Chen; Yeh, Ming-Kung; Wang, Shun-Mu; Chen, Yi-Hua

    2016-01-01

    The aims of study were to investigate risk factors associated with attempted and completed suicide. This nested case-control study was conducted using the medical and death data of nearly all pregnant women for the period 2002-2012 in Taiwan. A total of 139 cases of attempted suicide and 95 cases of completed suicide were identified; for each case, 10 controls were randomly selected and matched to the cases according to age and year of delivery. A conditional logistic regression model was used. The mean attempted and completed suicide rates were 9.91 and 6.86 per 100,000 women with live births, respectively. Never having married and postpartum depression also increased the risk of attempted suicide (OR = 2.06; 95% CI = 1.09-3.88 and OR = 2.51; 95% CI = 1.10-5.75, respectively) and completed suicide (OR = 20.27; 95% CI = 8.99-45.73 and OR = 21.72; 95% CI = 8.08-58.37, respectively). Other factors for attempted suicide included being widowed or divorced, and having a caesarean delivery or suicide history. Other factors for completed suicide included lower education level, low infant birth weight, and diagnosis of anxiety or mood disorder. These results suggest that people should appropriately assess potential risk factors and provide assistance for postnatal women to reduce the occurrence of suicide events. PMID:27173845

  20. The relationship between postnatal depression, sociodemographic factors, levels of partner support, and levels of physical activity

    PubMed Central

    Saligheh, Maryam; Rooney, Rosanna M.; McNamara, Beverley; Kane, Robert T.

    2014-01-01

    Background: postnatal depression (PND) is defined as a psychological mood disorder that occurs in a mother within 6 weeks of her giving birth. It refers to an episode that causes mood disturbance and it could begin in, or extend into, the postpartum period. It is thought to have a high impact upon the mother's health as well as the family's functioning and the child's development. Socio-demographic, psych-social, and physical activity factors may all contribute to postpartum mood and ability to cope with responsibilities. The primary aim of this study was to determine which of these factors predicted PND in postpartum women. A secondary aim was to identify the socio-demographic and psycho-social predictors of physical activity in postpartum women. Methods: The study used a cross-sectional correlational design. A sample of 150 postpartum women was sent a package of six standardized questionnaires. Results: There was no association between physical activity and PND; however, older mothers, mothers of younger children, mothers who are less reluctant to ask for help, and mothers who are more satisfied with the help they get experience lower levels of PND. Mothers of older babies, mothers with more children, and less educated mothers are more likely to engage in caregiving activities, whereas mothers with fewer children and higher levels of partner support are more likely to engage in occupational activities. None of the socio-demographic factors or any of the parenting factors predicted levels of sporting activity. PMID:25071618

  1. Effects of postnatal ethanol exposure on neurotrophic factors and signal transduction pathways in rat brain.

    PubMed

    Fattori, Vittorio; Abe, Shin-ichi; Kobayashi, Kumiko; Costa, Lucio G; Tsuji, Ryozo

    2008-04-01

    Exposure to ethanol during development induces severe brain damage, resulting in a number of CNS dysfunctions including microencephaly and mental retardation. Potential targets of ethanol-induced neurotoxicity include neurotrophic factors and their signal transduction pathways. In the present study, rat pups were given ethanol at the dose of 5 g kg(-1) via gavage from postnatal day (PND) 5 to 8, and mRNA expression of nerve growth-factor (NGF), brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), and neurotrophic factor-3 (NT-3) in the cerebral cortex was examined, with attention to signal transduction, on PND 8. The mRNA level of BDNF was decreased by ethanol while those of NGF or NT-3 were not changed. Brain weights were decreased and the levels of phospho-MAPK, phospho-p70S6K and phospho Akt were decreased while phosphor-PKCzeta and phospho-CREB remained unchanged. These results suggest that BDNF and its related signal pathways involving Akt, MAPK and p70S6K are potential targets of ethanol-induced developmental neurotoxicity. PMID:17685400

  2. Environmental factors and aggressive behavior

    SciTech Connect

    Anderson, A.C.

    1982-07-01

    This paper briefly reviews some of the research areas which indicate a correlation between environmental factors and initiation of aggressive behavior. Environmental factors including lunar influences, month of birth, climate and the effects of crowding and certain chemicals are discussed.

  3. Meat science and muscle biology symposium: In utero factors that influence postnatal muscle growth, carcass composition, and meat quality

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Meat Science and Muscle Biology Symposium titled “In utero factors that influence postnatal muscle growth, carcass composition, and meat quality” was held at the Joint Annual Meeting in Phoenix, AZ, July 15 to 19, 2012. The goal of this symposium was to highlight research on the impact of fetal...

  4. Pre- and Postnatal Risk Factors in Relation to Allergic Rhinitis in School-Aged Children in China

    PubMed Central

    Li, Youjin; Jiang, Yanrui; Li, Shenghui; Shen, Xiaoming; Liu, Jinfen; Jiang, Fan

    2015-01-01

    Objective The objective of this study was to investigate the relationship between prenatal and postnatal risk factors and the prevalence of allergic rhinitis (AR) in Chinese children of specific ages. Study Design This study was a cross-sectional survey. Students from 8 metropolitan cities in China were studied in November and December, 2005. There were 20,803 elementary-school Chinese children (49.6% boys, mean age, 9.19 years) enrolled. Questions from the standard questionnaire of the International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Children were completed to enable us to examine the pattern of current AR. The potential confounders and pre-and postnatal risk factors were analyzed using logistic regression. Results The overall prevalence of AR was found in this study to be 9.8%. After adjusting for several likely confounders, there was a higher likelihood of AR in school-aged children who were not exclusively breastfed in the first 4 months of their lives (odds ratio [OR]: 1.28; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.16–1.41), children who were born post-term (OR: 1.34; 95% CI: 1.12–1.60), children delivered by cesarean section (OR: 1.07; 95% CI: 1.00–1.19), or children born to mothers who experienced depressive symptoms during the pre- and postnatal periods (OR: 1.28; 95% CI: 1.15–1.42). Conclusions AR in school-aged children was found to be associated with pre- and postnatal events. These findings indicate that strategies to reduce exposure to risk factors during pre- and postnatal periods for childhood allergies might be warranted. PMID:25647669

  5. Factors influencing attempted and completed suicide in postnatal women: A population-based study in Taiwan

    PubMed Central

    Weng, Shu-Chuan; Chang, Jung-Chen; Yeh, Ming-Kung; Wang, Shun-Mu; Chen, Yi-Hua

    2016-01-01

    The aims of study were to investigate risk factors associated with attempted and completed suicide. This nested case–control study was conducted using the medical and death data of nearly all pregnant women for the period 2002–2012 in Taiwan. A total of 139 cases of attempted suicide and 95 cases of completed suicide were identified; for each case, 10 controls were randomly selected and matched to the cases according to age and year of delivery. A conditional logistic regression model was used. The mean attempted and completed suicide rates were 9.91 and 6.86 per 100,000 women with live births, respectively. Never having married and postpartum depression also increased the risk of attempted suicide (OR = 2.06; 95% CI = 1.09–3.88 and OR = 2.51; 95% CI = 1.10–5.75, respectively) and completed suicide (OR = 20.27; 95% CI = 8.99–45.73 and OR = 21.72; 95% CI = 8.08–58.37, respectively). Other factors for attempted suicide included being widowed or divorced, and having a caesarean delivery or suicide history. Other factors for completed suicide included lower education level, low infant birth weight, and diagnosis of anxiety or mood disorder. These results suggest that people should appropriately assess potential risk factors and provide assistance for postnatal women to reduce the occurrence of suicide events. PMID:27173845

  6. Selective Endothelin-B Receptor Stimulation Increases Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor in the Rat Brain during Postnatal Development.

    PubMed

    Leonard, M G; Prazad, P; Puppala, B; Gulati, A

    2015-11-01

    Endothelin, vascular endothelial growth factor and nerve growth factor play important roles in development of the central nervous system. ET(B) receptors have been shown to promote neurovascular remodeling in the adult ischemic brain through an increase in VEGF and NGF. It is possible that ET(B) receptors may be involved in postnatal development of the brain through VEGF and NGF. In the present study, the brains of male rat pups on postnatal days 1, 7, 14 and 28 were analyzed for expression of ET(B) receptors, VEGF and NGF. In order to determine the effect of ET(B) receptor stimulation, a separate group of pups were administered saline or ET(B) receptor agonist, IRL-1620, on day 21, and their brains were analyzed on day 28. The intensity of ET(B) receptor and VEGF staining in the vasculature as well as the number of blood vessels of normal pups increased with age and was significantly higher on postnatal day 14 compared to day 1 and day 7. In contrast, both ET(B) and NGF staining intensity in the cortex and subventricular zones decreased (P<0.01) at postnatal day 14 compared to earlier time points. Stimulation of ET(B) receptors resulted in a significant increase in VEGF and ET(B) intensity both in the vasculature and the brain (P<0.05), however, IRL-1620 did not produce any change in NGF expression. Results indicate that ET(B) receptors appear to play a role in the development of the CNS and selective stimulation of ET(B) receptors enhances VEGF but not NGF in the postnatal rat brain. PMID:25806822

  7. EARLY POSTNATAL OVERNUTRITION: POTENTIAL ROLES OF GASTROINTESTINAL VAGAL AFFERENTS AND BRAIN-DERIVED NEUROTROPHIC FACTOR

    PubMed Central

    Fox, Edward A.; Biddinger, Jessica E.

    2012-01-01

    Abnormal perinatal nutrition (APN) results in a predisposition to develop obesity and the metabolic syndrome and thus may contribute to the prevalence of these disorders. Obesity, including that which develops in organisms exposed to APN, has been associated with increased meal size. Vagal afferents of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract contribute to regulation of meal size by transmitting satiation signals from gut-to-brain. Consequently, APN could increase meal size by altering this signaling, possibly through changes in expression of factors that control vagal afferent development or function. Here two studies that addressed these possibilities are reviewed. First, meal patterns, meal microstructure, and the structure and density of vagal afferents that innervate the intestine were examined in mice that experienced early postnatal overnutrition (EPO). These studies provided little evidence for EPO effects on vagal afferents as it did not alter meal size or vagal afferent density or structure. However, these mice exhibited modest hyperphagia due to a satiety deficit. In parallel, the possibility that brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) could mediate APN effects on vagal afferent development was investigated. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor was a strong candidate because APN alters BDNF levels in some tissues and BDNF knockout disrupts development of vagal sensory innervation of the GI tract. Surprisingly, smooth muscle-specific BDNF knockout resulted in early-onset obesity and hyperphagia due to increases in meal size and frequency. Microstructure analysis revealed decreased decay of intake rate during a meal in knockouts, suggesting loss of vagal negative feedback contributed to their increase in meal size. However, meal-induced c-Fos activation within the dorsal vagal complex suggested this effect could be due to augmentation of vago-vagal reflexes. A model is proposed to explain how high-fat diet consumption produces increased obesity in organisms exposed to APN, and may be required to reveal effects of EPO on vagal function. PMID:22712064

  8. [Environmental factors in ALS].

    PubMed

    Juntas-Morales, Raul; Pageot, Nicolas; Corcia, Philippe; Camu, William

    2014-05-01

    ALS is likely to be a disorder of multifactorial origin. Among all the factors that may increase the risk of ALS, environmental ones are being studied for many years, but in the recent years, several advances have pointed to a new interest in their potential involvement in the disease process, especially for the cyanotoxin BMAA. Food containing BMAA has been found on Guam, a well-known focus of ALS/parkinsonism/dementia and high levels of BMAA have been identified into the brain of these patients. The BMAA cyanotoxin is potentially ubiquitous and have also been found into the food of patients who died from ALS both in Europe and USA. BMAA can be wrongly integrated into the protein structure during mRNA traduction, competing with serine. This may induce abnormal protein folding and a subsequent cell death. Heavy metals, such as lead or mercury may be directly toxic for neuronal cells. Several works have suggested an increased risk of ALS in individuals chronically exposed to these metals. Exposure to pesticides has been suggested to be linked to an increased risk of developing ALS. The mechanism of their toxicity is likely to be mediated by paraoxonases. These proteins are in charge of detoxifying the organism from toxins, and particularly organophosphates. To date, there are insufficient scientific data to suggest that exposure to electromagnetic fields may increase the risk of having ALS. We are particularly missing longitudinal cohorts to demonstrate that risk. PMID:24703731

  9. Early B cell factor 1 is an essential transcription factor for postnatal glomerular maturation

    PubMed Central

    Fretz, Jackie A.; Nelson, Tracy; Velazquez, Heino; Xi, Yougen; Moeckel, Gilbert; Horowitz, Mark C.

    2013-01-01

    The coordination of multiple cytokines and transcription factors with their downstream signaling pathways have been shown to be integral to nephron maturation. Here we present a completely novel role for the helix-loop-helix transcription factor Early B cell Factor 1 (Ebf1), originally identified for B cell maturation, for the proper maturation of glomerular cells from mesenchymal progenitors. The expression of Ebf1 was both spatially and temporally regulated within the developing cortex and glomeruli. Using Ebf1-null mice we then identified biochemical, metabolic, and histological abnormalities in renal development that arose in the absence of this transcription factor. In the Ebf1 knockout mice the developed kidneys show thinned cortices and reduced glomerular maturation. The glomeruli showed abnormal vascularization and severely effaced podocytes. The mice exhibited early albuminuria and elevated blood urea nitrogen levels. Moreover, the GFR was reduced over 66 percent and the expression of podocyte-derived VEGF-A was decreased compared to wild type control mice. Thus, Ebf1 has a significant and novel role in glomerular development, podocyte maturation, and the maintenance of kidney integrity and function. PMID:24172684

  10. Postnatal visual deprivation in rats regulates several retinal genes and proteins, including differentiation-associated fibroblast growth factor-2.

    PubMed

    Prokosch-Willing, Verena; Meyer zu Hoerste, Melissa; Mertsch, Sonja; Stupp, Tobias; Thanos, Solon

    2015-01-01

    Little is known about the retinal cellular basis of amblyopia, which is a developmental disease characterized by impaired visual acuity. This study examined the retinal transcripts associated with experimentally induced unilateral amblyopia in rats. Surgical tarsorrhaphy of the eyelids on one side was performed in pups prior to eye opening at postnatal day 14, thereby preventing any visual experience. This condition was maintained for over 2 months, after which electroretinograms (ERGs) were recorded, the retinal ganglion cell (RGC) arrangement and number were determined using neuroanatomical tracing, the retinal transcripts were studied using microarray analysis, regulated mRNAs were confirmed with quantitative reverse-transcriptase PCR, and proteins were stained using Western blotting and immunohistochemistry. An attenuated ERG was found in eyes that were deprived of visual experience. Retrograde neuroanatomical staining disclosed a larger number of RGCs within the retina on the visually deprived side compared to the non-deprived, control side, and a multilayered distribution of RGCs. At the retinomic level, several transcripts associated with retinal differentiation, such as fibroblast growth factor 2 (FGF-2), were either up- or downregulated. Most of the transcripts could be verified at the mRNA level. To unravel the role of a differentiation-associated protein, we tested FGF-2 in dissociated postnatal retinal cell cultures and found that FGF-2 is a potent factor triggering ganglion cell differentiation. The data suggest that visual experience shapes the postnatal retinal differentiation, whereas visual deprivation induces changes at the functional, cellular and molecular levels within the retina. PMID:25402196

  11. The insulin-like growth factors (IGFs) and IGF binding proteins in postnatal development of murine mammary glands.

    PubMed

    Wood, T L; Richert, M M; Stull, M A; Allar, M A

    2000-01-01

    The insulin-like growth factors are mitogens and survival factors for normal mammary epithelial cells in vitro. Data reviewed here demonstrate that mRNAs for IGF-I and IGF-II, the IGF type I receptor and the IGFBPs are expressed locally in mammary tissue during pubertal and pregnancy-induced growth and differentiation of murine mammary glands. IGF-I, IGF-II and the IGF-IR were expressed in terminal end buds (TEBs) in virgin glands during ductal growth. In addition, IGF-II and IGF-IR mRNAs were expressed in ductal and alveolar epithelium in glands throughout postnatal development. Consistent with these results, IGF-I promoted ductal growth and proliferation in mouse mammary glands in organ culture. In addition to endogenous expression of the IGFs and IGF-IR, the IGFBPs showed a varied pattern of expression in mammary tissue during postnatal development. For example, IGFBP-3 and -5 mRNAs were expressed in TEBs and ducts while IGFBP-2 and -4 mRNAs were expressed in stromal cells immediately surrounding the epithelium. These results support a role for the IGFs and IGFBPs as local mediators of postnatal mammary gland growth and differentiation. PMID:10791766

  12. Overview of environmental factors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Purvis, C. K.

    1989-01-01

    The orbital environment is complex, dynamic, and comprised of both natural and system-induced components. Several environment factors are important for materials. Materials selection/suitability determination requires consideration of each and all factors, including synergisms among them. Understanding and evaluating these effects will require ground testing, modeling, and focused flight experimentation.

  13. Postnatal Expression of Neurotrophic Factors Accessible to Spiral Ganglion Neurons in the Auditory System of Adult Hearing and Deafened Rats

    PubMed Central

    Bailey, Erin M.

    2014-01-01

    Spiral ganglion neurons (SGNs) receive input from cochlear hair cells and project from the cochlea to the cochlear nucleus. After destruction of hair cells with aminoglycoside antibiotics or noise, SGNs gradually die. It has been assumed that SGN death is attributable to loss of neurotrophic factors (NTFs) derived from hair cells or supporting cells in the organ of Corti (OC). We used quantitative PCR (qPCR) to assay NTF expression—neurotrophin-3 (NT-3), BDNF, GDNF, neurturin, artemin, and CNTF—in the OC and cochlear nucleus at various ages from postnatal day 0 (P0) to P90 in control hearing and neonatally deafened rats. NT-3, neurturin, and CNTF were most abundant in the postnatal hearing OC; CNTF and neurturin most abundant in the cochlear nucleus. In the OC, NT-3 and CNTF showed a postnatal increase in expression approximately concomitant with hearing onset. In rats deafened by daily kanamycin injections (from P8 to P16), surviving inner hair cells were evident at P16 but absent by P19, with most postsynaptic boutons lost before P16. NT-3 and CNTF, which normally increase postnatally, had significantly reduced expression in the OC of deafened rats, although CNTF was expressed throughout the time that SGNs were dying. In contrast, neurturin expression was constant, unaffected by deafening or by age. CNTF and neurturin expression in the cochlear nucleus was unaffected by deafening or age. Thus, NTFs other than NT-3 are available to SGNs even as they are dying after deafening, apparently conflicting with the hypothesis that SGN death is attributable to lack of NTFs. PMID:25253857

  14. Functional Roles of Otx2 Transcription Factor in Postnatal Mouse Retinal Development▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Koike, Chieko; Nishida, Akihiro; Ueno, Shinji; Saito, Hiromitsu; Sanuki, Rikako; Sato, Shigeru; Furukawa, Akiko; Aizawa, Shinichi; Matsuo, Isao; Suzuki, Noboru; Kondo, Mineo; Furukawa, Takahisa

    2007-01-01

    We previously reported that Otx2 is essential for photoreceptor cell fate determination; however, the functional role of Otx2 in postnatal retinal development is still unclear although it has been reported to be expressed in retinal bipolar cells and photoreceptors at postnatal stages. In this study, we first examined the roles of Otx2 in the terminal differentiation of photoreceptors by analyzing Otx2; Crx double-knockout mice. In Otx2+/−; Crx−/− retinas, photoreceptor degeneration and downregulation of photoreceptor-specific genes were much more prominent than in Crx−/− retinas, suggesting that Otx2 has a role in the terminal differentiation of the photoreceptors. Moreover, bipolar cells decreased in the Otx2+/−; Crx−/− retina, suggesting that Otx2 is also involved in retinal bipolar-cell development. To further investigate the role of Otx2 in bipolar-cell development, we generated a postnatal bipolar-cell-specific Otx2 conditional-knockout mouse line. Immunohistochemical analysis of this line showed that the expression of protein kinase C, a marker of mature bipolar cells, was significantly downregulated in the retina. Electroretinograms revealed that the electrophysiological function of retinal bipolar cells was impaired as a result of Otx2 ablation. These data suggest that Otx2 plays a functional role in the maturation of retinal photoreceptor and bipolar cells. PMID:17908793

  15. Environmental risk factors for autism.

    PubMed

    Dietert, Rodney R; Dietert, Janice M; Dewitt, Jamie C

    2011-01-01

    Autism is a devastating childhood condition that has emerged as an increasing social concern just as it has increased in prevalence in recent decades. Autism and the broader category of autism spectrum disorders are among the increasingly seen examples in which there is a fetal basis for later disease or disorder. Environmental, genetic, and epigenetic factors all play a role in determining the risk of autism and some of these effects appear to be transgenerational. Identification of the most critical windows of developmental vulnerability is paramount to understanding when and under what circumstances a child is at elevated risk for autism. No single environmental factor explains the increased prevalence of autism. While a handful of environmental risk factors have been suggested based on data from human studies and animal research, it is clear that many more, and perhaps the most significant risk factors, remain to be identified. The most promising risk factors identified to date fall within the categories of drugs, environmental chemicals, infectious agents, dietary factors, and other physical/psychological stressors. However, the rate at which environmental risk factors for autism have been identified via research and safety testing has not kept pace with the emerging health threat posed by this condition. For the way forward, it seems clear that additional focused research is needed. But more importantly, successful risk reduction strategies for autism will require more extensive and relevant developmental safety testing of drugs and chemicals. PMID:24149029

  16. Environmental factors associated with asthma.

    PubMed Central

    Walker, Bailus; Stokes, Lynette D.; Warren, Rueben

    2003-01-01

    Asthma, a disease of attacks and remission, continues to account for substantial morbidity and direct economic costs. Numerous studies--epidemiologic, toxicologic and clinical--present evidence for a broad spectrum of environmental risk factors associated with asthma. This review summarizes current thinking on a subset of these factors. Knowledge of potential environmental determinants of asthma is important to both the patient and healthcare professional in the application of multiple modalities of medical and environmental intervention for management of the development, and exacerbation of this chronic inflammatory disorder of the airways. PMID:12760611

  17. Environmental risk factors for osteoporosis

    SciTech Connect

    Goyer, R.A.; Korach, K.S. ); Epstein, S. ); Bhattacharyya, M. ); Pounds, J. )

    1994-04-01

    Environmental risk factors for osteoporosis were reviewed at a conference held at the National Institute for Environmental Health Sciences 8-9 November 1993. The conference was co-sponsored by the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Disease and the NIH Office of Research in Women's Health. The objective of the conference was to review what is known about risk factors for osteoporosis and to identify gaps in the present state of knowledge that might be addressed by future research. The conference was divided into two broad themes. The first session focused on current knowledge regarding etiology, risk factors, and approaches to clinical and laboratory diagnosis. This was followed by three sessions in which various environmental pollutants were discussed. Topics selected for review included environmental agents that interfere with bone and calcium metabolism, such as the toxic metals lead, cadmium, aluminum, and fluoride, natural and antiestrogens, calcium, and vitamin D.

  18. The impact of environmental factors in severe psychiatric disorders

    PubMed Central

    Schmitt, Andrea; Malchow, Berend; Hasan, Alkomiet; Falkai, Peter

    2014-01-01

    During the last decades, schizophrenia has been regarded as a developmental disorder. The neurodevelopmental hypothesis proposes schizophrenia to be related to genetic and environmental factors leading to abnormal brain development during the pre- or postnatal period. First disease symptoms appear in early adulthood during the synaptic pruning and myelination process. Meta-analyses of structural MRI studies revealing hippocampal volume deficits in first-episode patients and in the longitudinal disease course confirm this hypothesis. Apart from the influence of risk genes in severe psychiatric disorders, environmental factors may also impact brain development during the perinatal period. Several environmental factors such as antenatal maternal virus infections, obstetric complications entailing hypoxia as common factor or stress during neurodevelopment have been identified to play a role in schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, possibly contributing to smaller hippocampal volumes. In major depression, psychosocial stress during the perinatal period or in adulthood is an important trigger. In animal studies, chronic stress or repeated administration of glucocorticoids have been shown to induce degeneration of glucocorticoid-sensitive hippocampal neurons and may contribute to the pathophysiology of affective disorders. Epigenetic mechanisms altering the chromatin structure such as histone acetylation and DNA methylation may mediate effects of environmental factors to transcriptional regulation of specific genes and be a prominent factor in gene-environmental interaction. In animal models, gene-environmental interaction should be investigated more intensely to unravel pathophysiological mechanisms. These findings may lead to new therapeutic strategies influencing epigenetic targets in severe psychiatric disorders. PMID:24574956

  19. Environmental Factors Inducing Human Cancers

    PubMed Central

    Parsa, N

    2012-01-01

    Background An explosion of research has been done in discovering how human health is affected by environmental factors. I will discuss the impacts of environmental cancer causing factors and how they continue to cause multiple disruptions in cellular networking. Some risk factors may not cause cancer. Other factors initiate consecutive genetic mutations that would eventually alter the normal pathway of cellular proliferations and differentiation. Genetic mutations in four groups of genes; (Oncogenes, Tumor suppressor genes, Apoptosis genes and DNA repairing genes) play a vital role in altering the normal cell division. In recent years, molecular genetics have greatly increased our understanding of the basic mechanisms in cancer development and utilizing these molecular techniques for cancer screening, diagnosis, prognosis and therapies. Inhibition of carcinogenic exposures wherever possible should be the goal of cancer prevention programs to reduce exposures from all environmental carcinogens. PMID:23304670

  20. Risk profiles associated with postnatal depressive symptoms among women in a public sector hospital in Mexico: the role of sociodemographic and psychosocial factors.

    PubMed

    de Castro, Filipa; Place, Jean Marie S; Billings, Deborah L; Rivera, Leonor; Frongillo, Edward A

    2015-06-01

    This study examined the association between postnatal depressive symptoms and a set of demographic and psychosocial factors among 604 women attending a public hospital for postnatal care in Mexico City. Specific profiles of women that would indicate an increased probability for developing postnatal depression (PND) based on discrete combinations of risk and protective factors were generated. In a logistic model, followed by the estimation of predicted probabilities, we examined the association between depressive symptomatology and psychosocial factors: low social support, unplanned pregnancies, history of depression, and exposure to moderate or severe intimate partner violence (IPV) during pregnancy. Postnatal depressive symptomatology was reported by 10.6 % of the women, as measured by scores at 12 or above on the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale. The cumulative probability of presenting PND in the simultaneous presence of the psychosocial factors was 67.0 %; however, this could be reduced to 5.5 % through preventive measures that work to eliminate low social support, unplanned pregnancy, and exposure to severe IPV during pregnancy. Early identification of psychosocial risk factors, specifically low social support, unplanned pregnancies, history of depression, and exposure to violence during pregnancy, is recommended. PMID:25416532

  1. Hypoxia-Induced Developmental Delays of Inhibitory Interneurons Are Reversed by Environmental Enrichment in the Postnatal Mouse Forebrain

    PubMed Central

    Komitova, Mila; Xenos, Dionysios; Salmaso, Natalina; May Tran, Kathy; Brand, Theresa; Schwartz, Michael L.; Ment, Laura

    2013-01-01

    Infants born premature experience hypoxic episodes due to immaturity of their respiratory and central nervous systems. This profoundly affects brain development and results in cognitive impairments. We used a mouse model to examine the impact of hypoxic rearing (9.510.5% O2) from postnatal day 3 to 11 (P3P11) on GABAergic interneurons and the potential for environmental enrichment to ameliorate these developmental abnormalities. At P15 the numbers of cortical interneurons expressing immunohistochemically detectable levels of parvalbumin (PV), somatostatin (SST), and vasoactive intestinal peptide were decreased in hypoxic-reared mice by 59%, 32%, and 38%, respectively, compared with normoxic controls. Hypoxia also decreased total GABA content in frontal neocortex by 31%. However, GAD67-EGFP knock-in mice reared under hypoxic conditions showed no changes in total number of GAD67-EGFP+ cells and no evidence of increased interneuron death, suggesting that the total number of interneurons was not decreased, but rather, that hypoxic-rearing decreased interneuron marker expression in these cells. In adulthood, PV and SST expression levels were decreased in hypoxic-reared mice. In contrast, intensity of reelin (RLN) expression was significantly increased in adult hypoxic-reared mice compared with normoxic controls. Housing mice in an enriched environment from P21 until adulthood normalized phenotypic interneuron marker expression without affecting total interneuron numbers or leading to increased neurogenesis. Our data show that (1) hypoxia decreases PV and SST and increases RLN expression in cortical interneurons during postnatal cortical development and (2) enriched environment has the capacity to normalize the interneuron abnormalities in cortex. PMID:23946395

  2. Environmental risk factors for psychosis

    PubMed Central

    Dean, Kimberlie; Murray, Robin M.

    2005-01-01

    Genetic factors are clearly important in the etiology of schizophrenia, but the environment in which an individual's genes find expression is also crucial to the development of the illness. In this review of environmental risk factors for schizophrenia, we consider risks operating prenatally and perinatally, during childhood, and then later in life prior to illness onset. Some of these risk factors have been well documented, for example, early hazards causing fetal growth retardation or hypoxia, and hazards nearer the onset of illness like drug abuse and migration. Others are much less certain. The importance of interaction between genetic and environmental risk is, however, undoubtedly important and there is emerging evidence for this from a range of sources. As the etiology of schiz-ophrenia is unraveled, the picture becomes more complex, but also more obviously relevant to the plight of the individual patient. PMID:16060597

  3. Environmental factors in multiple sclerosis.

    PubMed

    Pantazou, Vasiliki; Schluep, Myriam; Du Pasquier, Renaud

    2015-04-01

    Although multiple sclerosis (MS) is recognized as a disorder involving the immune system, the interplay of environmental factors and individual genetic susceptibility seems to influence MS onset and clinical expression, as well as therapeutic responsiveness. Multiple human epidemiological and animal model studies have evaluated the effect of different environmental factors, such as viral infections, vitamin intake, sun exposure, or still dietary and life habits on MS prevalence. Previous Epstein-Barr virus infection, especially if this infection occurs in late childhood, and lack of vitamin D (VitD) currently appear to be the most robust environmental factors for the risk of MS, at least from an epidemiological standpoint. Ultraviolet radiation (UVR) activates VitD production but there are also some elements supporting the fact that insufficient UVR exposure during childhood may represent a VitD-independent risk factor of MS development, as well as negative effect on the clinical and radiological course of MS. Recently, there has been a growing interest in the gut-brain axis, a bidirectional neuro-hormonal communication system between the intestinal microbiota and the central nervous system (CNS). Indeed, components of the intestinal microbiota may be pro-inflammatory, promote the migration of immune cells into the CNS, and thus be a key parameter for the development of autoimmune disorders such as MS. Interestingly most environmental factors seem to play a role during childhood. Thus, if childhood is the most fragile period to develop MS later in life, preventive measures should be applied early in life. For example, adopting a diet enriched in VitD, playing outdoor and avoiding passive smoking would be extremely simple measures of primary prevention for public health strategies. However, these hypotheses need to be confirmed by prospective evaluations, which are obviously difficult to conduct. In addition, it remains to be determined whether and how VitD supplementation in adult life would be useful in alleviating the course of MS, once this disease has already started. A better knowledge of the influence of various environmental stimuli on MS risk and course would certainly allow the development of add-on therapies or measures in parallel to the immunotherapies currently used in MS. PMID:25744944

  4. Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) Bioavailability Regulates Angiogenesis and Intestinal Stem and Progenitor Cell Proliferation during Postnatal Small Intestinal Development

    PubMed Central

    Holoyda, Kathleen A.; Hou, Xiaogang; Fowler, Kathryn L.; Grikscheit, Tracy C.

    2016-01-01

    Background Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is a highly conserved, master regulatory molecule required for endothelial cell proliferation, organization, migration and branching morphogenesis. Podocoryne carnea and drosophila, which lack endothelial cells and a vascular system, express VEGF homologs, indicating potential roles beyond angiogenesis and vasculogenesis. The role of VEGF in the development and homeostasis of the postnatal small intestine is unknown. We hypothesized regulating VEGF bioavailability in the postnatal small intestine would exhibit effects beyond the vasculature and influence epithelial cell stem/progenitor populations. Methods VEGF mutant mice were created that overexpressed VEGF in the brush border of epithelium via the villin promotor following doxycycline treatment. To decrease VEGF bioavailability, sFlt-1 mutant mice were generated that overexpressed the soluble VEGF receptor sFlt-1 upon doxycycline administration in the intestinal epithelium. Mice were analyzed after 21 days of doxycycline administration. Results Increased VEGF expression was confirmed by RT-qPCR and ELISA in the intestine of the VEGF mutants compared to littermates. The VEGF mutant duodenum demonstrated increased angiogenesis and vascular leak as compared to littermate controls. The VEGF mutant duodenum revealed taller villi and increased Ki-67-positive cells in the transit-amplifying zone with reduced Lgr5 expression. The duodenum of sFlt-1 mutants revealed shorter villi and longer crypts with reduced proliferation in the transit-amplifying zone, reduced expression of Dll1, Bmp4 and VE-cadherin, and increased expression of Sox9 and EphB2. Conclusions Manipulating VEGF bioavailability leads to profound effects on not only the intestinal vasculature, but epithelial stem and progenitor cells in the intestinal crypt. Elucidation of the crosstalk between VEGF signaling in the vasculature, mesenchyme and epithelial stem/progenitor cell populations may direct future cell therapies for intestinal dysfunction or disease. PMID:26978773

  5. Environmental factors in cardiovascular disease.

    PubMed

    Cosselman, Kristen E; Navas-Acien, Ana; Kaufman, Joel D

    2015-11-01

    Environmental exposure is an important but underappreciated risk factor contributing to the development and severity of cardiovascular disease (CVD). The heart and vascular system are highly vulnerable to a number of environmental agents--ambient air pollution and the metals arsenic, cadmium, and lead are widespread and the most-extensively studied. Like traditional risk factors, such as smoking and diabetes mellitus, these exposures advance disease and mortality via augmentation or initiation of pathophysiological processes associated with CVD, including blood-pressure control, carbohydrate and lipid metabolism, vascular function, and atherogenesis. Although residence in highly polluted areas is associated with high levels of cardiovascular risk, adverse effects on cardiovascular health also occur at exposure levels below current regulatory standards. Considering the widespread prevalence of exposure, even modest contributions to CVD risk can have a substantial effect on population health. Evidence-based clinical and public-health strategies aimed at reducing environmental exposures from current levels could substantially lower the burden of CVD-related death and disability worldwide. PMID:26461967

  6. Overweight at age two years in a multi-ethnic cohort (ABCD study): the role of prenatal factors, birth outcomes and postnatal factors

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Childhood overweight/obesity is a major public health problem worldwide which disproportionally affects specific ethnic groups. Little is known about whether such differences already exist at an early age and which factors contribute to these ethnic differences. Therefore, the present study assessed possible ethnic differences in overweight at age 2 years, and the potential explanatory role of prenatal factors, birth outcomes and postnatal factors. Methods Data were derived from a multi-ethnic cohort in the Netherlands (the ABCD study). Weight and height data of 3,156 singleton infants at age 2 years were used. Five ethnic populations were distinguished: Dutch native (n = 1,718), African descent (n = 238), Turkish (n = 162), Moroccan (n = 245) and other non-Dutch (n = 793). Overweight status was defined by the International Obesity Task Force guidelines. The explanatory role of prenatal factors, birth outcomes and postnatal factors in ethnic disparities in overweight (including obesity) was assessed by logistic regression analysis. Results Compared to the native Dutch (7.1%), prevalence of overweight was higher in the Turkish (19.8%) and Moroccan (16.7%) group, whereas the prevalence was not increased in the African descent (9.2%) and other non-Dutch (8.8%) group. Although maternal pre-pregnancy body mass index partly explained the ethnic differences, the odds ratio (OR) of being overweight remained higher in the Turkish (OR: 2.66; 95%CI: 1.56-4.53) and Moroccan (OR: 2.11; 95%CI: 1.31-3.38) groups after adjusting for prenatal factors. The remaining differences were largely accounted for by weight gain during the first 6 months of life (postnatal factor). Maternal height, birth weight and gender were independent predictors for overweight at age 2 years, but did not explain the ethnic differences. Conclusion Turkish and Moroccan children in the Netherlands have 2- to 3-fold higher odds for being overweight at age 2 years, which is largely attributed to maternal pre-pregnancy BMI and weight gain during the first 6 months of life. Further study on the underlying factors of this early weight gain is required to tackle ethnic differences in overweight among these children. PMID:21806791

  7. Neurodevelopmental Plasticity in Pre- and Postnatal Environmental Interactions: Implications for Psychiatric Disorders from an Evolutionary Perspective

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Young-A; Yamaguchi, Yoshie; Goto, Yukiori

    2015-01-01

    Psychiatric disorders are disadvantageous behavioral phenotypes in humans. Accordingly, a recent epidemiological study has reported decreased fecundity in patients with psychiatric disorders, such as schizophrenia and autism spectrum disorders. Moreover, the fecundity of the relatives of these patients is not exceedingly higher compared to the fecundity of the relatives of normal subjects. Collectively, the prevalence of psychiatric disorders among humans is expected to decrease over generations. Nevertheless, in reality, the prevalence rates of psychiatric disorders in humans either have been constant over a long period of time or have even increased more recently. Several attempts to explain this fact have been made using biological mechanisms, such as de novo gene mutations or variants, although none of these explanations is fully comprehensive. Here, we propose a hypothesis towards understanding the biological mechanisms of psychiatric disorders from evolutionary perspectives. This hypothesis considers that behavioral phenotypes associated with psychiatric disorders might have emerged in the evolution of organisms as a neurodevelopmental adaptation against adverse environmental conditions associated with stress. PMID:26060583

  8. Environmental factors and allergic diseases.

    PubMed

    Jenerowicz, Dorota; Silny, Wojciech; Dańczak-Pazdrowska, Aleksandra; Polańska, Adriana; Osmola-Mańkowska, Agnieszka; Olek-Hrab, Karolina

    2012-01-01

    An objective of this article is a review of contemporary knowledge on various environmental factors, that influence prevalence and course of allergic diseases, like asthma, allergic rhinitis, atopic dermatitis and also contact dermatitis. Surrounding climate may directly influence each patient, but also determines type of flora and fauna within particular geographical regions and thus affects sources of airborne and food allergens. Epidemiological studies suggest that there is a strong relationship between air pollution and development and exacerbation of asthma and other allergic diseases--main attention has been concentrated on gaseous materials such as ozone (O(3)) and nitrogen dioxide (NO(2)), as well as particulate matter (PM), generated by car traffic and industry. Diesel exhaust particulate (DEP) has the ability to bind proteins and may serve as a potential carrier of allergens, penetrating deep into respiratory tract. Among the most extensively studied environmental factors influencing allergy are airborne allergens: dust mites, pollens, fungi and animal dander. Foods may elicit both true IgE-mediated allergy and also various non-immunological reactions, associated with direct release of mediators or toxic activity. It has been estimated, that over 85,000 chemicals are recognized in the human environment and they may act as contact allergens or irritants, causing allergic or non-allergic contact dermatitis. Among them metals, fragrances, preservatives, botanicals and paraphenylenediamine are considered as the most significant. Infections have always been associated with etiopathogenesis of allergic diseases and they may contribute to exacerbation of their course. PMID:23020042

  9. Revisiting the dimensional structure of the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS): empirical evidence for a general factor

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background The Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) has been proposed as a one-dimensional instrument and used as a single 10-item scale. This might be considered questionable since repeated psychometric studies have shown multi-dimensionality, which would entail using separate component subscales. This study reappraised the dimensional structure of the EPDS, with a focus on the extent of factor correlations and related factor-based discriminant validity as a foundation for deciding how to effectively scale the component items. Methods The sample comprised 811 randomly selected mothers of children up to 5 months attending primary health services of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Strict Confirmatory Factor Analysis (CFA) and Exploratory Factor Analysis modeled within a CFA framework (E/CFA) were sequentially used to identify best fitting and parsimonious model(s), including a bifactor analysis to evaluate the existence of a general factor. Properties concerning the related 10-item raw-score scale were also investigated using non-parametric items response theory methods (scalability and monotonicity). Results An initial CFA rejected the one-dimensional structure, while an E/CFA subscribed a three-dimensional solution. Yet, factors were highly correlated (0.66, 0.75 and 0.82). The ensuing CFA showed poor discriminant validity (some square-roots of average variance extracted below the factor correlations). A general bifactor CFA was then fit. Results suggested that, although still weakly encompassing three specific factors, the EPDS might be better described by a model encompassing a general factor (loadings ranging from 0.51 to 0.81). The related 10-item raw score showed adequate scalability (Loevinger's H coefficient = 0.4208), monotonicity e partial double monotonicity (nonintersections of Item Step Response Functions). Conclusion Although the EPDS indicated the presence of specific factors, they do not qualify as independent dimensions if used separately and should therefore not be used empirically as sub-scales (raw scores). An all-encompassing scale seems better suited and continuing its use in clinical practice and applied research should be encouraged. PMID:21689442

  10. Why Aren't Identical Twins Linguistically Identical? Genetic, Prenatal and Postnatal Factors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stromswold, Karin

    2006-01-01

    Results of twin studies clearly demonstrate that genetic factors play an important role in the rate of language acquisition and linguistic proficiency attained by normal and impaired children and adults [see Stromswold, K. (2001). The heritability of language: A review and meta-analysis of twin, adoption and linkage studies. "Language," 77,

  11. Why Aren't Identical Twins Linguistically Identical? Genetic, Prenatal and Postnatal Factors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stromswold, Karin

    2006-01-01

    Results of twin studies clearly demonstrate that genetic factors play an important role in the rate of language acquisition and linguistic proficiency attained by normal and impaired children and adults [see Stromswold, K. (2001). The heritability of language: A review and meta-analysis of twin, adoption and linkage studies. "Language," 77,…

  12. Mex3c regulates insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1) expression and promotes postnatal growth

    PubMed Central

    Jiao, Yan; Bishop, Colin E.; Lu, Baisong

    2012-01-01

    Insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1) mediates the growth-promoting activities of growth hormone. How Igf1 expression is regulated posttranscriptionally is unclear. Caenorhabditis elegans muscle excess 3 (MEX-3) is involved in cell fate specification during early embryonic development through regulating mRNAs involved in specifying cell fate. The function of its mammalian homologue, MEX3C, is unknown. Here we show that MEX3C deficiency in Mex3c homozygous mutant mice causes postnatal growth retardation and background-dependent perinatal lethality. Hypertrophy of chondrocytes in growth plates is significantly impaired. Circulating and bone local production of IGF1 are both decreased in mutant mice. Mex3c mRNA is strongly expressed in the testis and the brain, and highly expressed in resting and proliferating chondrocytes of the growth plates. MEX3C is able to enrich multiple mRNA species from tissue lysates, including Igf1. Igf1 expression in bone is decreased at the protein level but not at the mRNA level, indicating translational/posttranslational regulation. We propose that MEX3C protein plays an important role in enhancing the translation of Igf1 mRNA, which explains the perinatal lethality and growth retardation observed in MEX3C-deficient mice. PMID:22357625

  13. Side-stream tobacco smoke-induced airway hyperresponsiveness in early postnatal period is involved nerve growth factor.

    PubMed

    Wu, Z-X; Hunter, D D; Batchelor, T P; Dey, R D

    2016-03-01

    Epidemiological studies have shown that children are more susceptible to adverse respiratory effects of passive smoking than adults. The goal of this study is to elucidate the possible neural mechanism induced by exposure to passive smoking during early life. Postnatal day (PD) 2 and PD 21 mice were exposed to side-stream tobacco smoke (SS), a surrogate to secondhand smoke, or filtered air (FA) for 10 consecutive days. Pulmonary function, substance P (SP) airway innervation, neurotrophin gene expression in lung and nerve growth factor (NGF) release in bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid were measured at different times after the last SS or FA exposure. Exposure to SS significantly altered pulmonary function in PD2, accompanied with an enhanced SP innervation in airway. However, exposure to SS during the later developmental period (PD21) did not appear to affect pulmonary function and SP innervation of the airways. Interestingly, SS exposure in PD2 group significantly induced an increased gene expression on NGF, and decreased NGF receptor P75 in lung; parallel with high levels of NGF protein in BAL. Furthermore, pretreatment with NGF antibody significantly diminished SS-induced airway hyperresponsivenss and the increased SP airway innervation in the PD2 group. These findings suggest that enhanced NGF released in the lung contributes to SS-enhanced SP tracheal innervation and airway responsiveness in early life. PMID:26638730

  14. Transcription factor Sp3 is essential for post-natal survival and late tooth development

    PubMed Central

    Bouwman, Peter; Göllner, Heike; Elsässer, Hans-Peter; Eckhoff, Gabriele; Karis, Alar; Grosveld, Frank; Philipsen, Sjaak; Suske, Guntram

    2000-01-01

    Sp3 is a ubiquitously expressed transcription factor closely related to Sp1 (specificity protein 1). We have disrupted the mouse Sp3 gene by homologous recombination. Sp3-deficient embryos are growth retarded and invariably die at birth of respiratory failure. The cause for the observed breathing defect remains obscure since only minor morphological alterations were observed in the lung, and surfactant protein expression is indistinguishable from that in wild-type mice. Histological examinations of individual organs in Sp3–/– mice show a pronounced defect in late tooth formation. In Sp3 null mice, the dentin/enamel layer of the developing teeth is impaired due to the lack of ameloblast-specific gene products. Comparison of the Sp1 and Sp3 knockout phenotype shows that Sp1 and Sp3 have distinct functions in vivo, but also suggests a degree of functional redundancy. PMID:10675334

  15. Developmental Effects of Exposures to Environmental Factors: The Polish Mother and Child Cohort Study

    PubMed Central

    Sobala, Wojciech; Trzcinka-Ochocka, Malgorzata; Strugala-Stawik, Halina; Magnus, Per

    2013-01-01

    This paper estimates the effects of exposure to environmental factors, including lead, mercury, environmental tobacco smoke (ETS), and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH), on child psychomotor development. The study population consists of mother-child pairs in the Polish Mother and Child Cohort Study. Prenatal and postnatal exposure to environmental factors was determined from biomarker measurements as follows: for lead exposure—cord blood lead level, for mercury—maternal hair mercury level, for ETS—cotinine level in saliva and urine, and for PAH—1-hydroxypyrene (1-HP) in urine. At the age of 12 (406 subjects) and 24 months (198 subjects) children were assessed using Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development. There were no statistically significant effects of prenatal exposure to mercury or 1-HP on child psychomotor development. After adjusting for potential confounders, adverse effects of prenatal exposure to ETS on motor development (β = −2.6; P = 0.02) and postnatal exposure to ETS on cognitive (β = −0.2; P = 0.05) and motor functions (β = −0.5; P = 0.01) were found. The adverse effect of prenatal lead exposure on cognitive score was of borderline significance (β = −6.2; P = 0.06). The study underscores the importance of policies and public health interventions that aim to reduce prenatal and postnatal exposure to lead and ETS. PMID:24191247

  16. Causes of ICU psychosis: the environmental factors.

    PubMed

    Gelling, L

    1999-01-01

    ICU psychosis is common amongst patients admitted to critical care settings. ICU psychosis is the result of a complex interaction between physiological and psychological factors. Environmental factors will contribute to ICU psychosis (including sleep deprivation, excessive noise, separation, poor communication and immobilisation). These environmental factors can be manipulated to reduce the incidence of ICU psychosis. PMID:10358540

  17. Environmental Volunteers: Factors Influencing Their Involvement in Environmental Action

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Liarakou, Georgia; Kostelou, Eleni; Gavrilakis, Costas

    2011-01-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate the factors that influence volunteers to become involved in environmental action. The research focused on volunteers undertaking action in summer camps organised by an environmental non-governmental organisation (NGO) in Greece. The results suggest that the environmental issues addressed in volunteer…

  18. The Role of Pre- and Postnatal Timing of Family Risk Factors on Child Behavior at 36 Months

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bekkhus, Mona; Rutter, Michael; Barker, Edward D.; Borge, Anne I. H.

    2011-01-01

    Children growing up in disharmonious families with anxious/depressed mothers are at risk for emotional and behavioral difficulties, however whether these associations reflect postnatal environment, prenatal exposure, or an overall liability is still unclear. This study used prospectively collected data from 24,259 participants of the Norwegian

  19. The Role of Pre- and Postnatal Timing of Family Risk Factors on Child Behavior at 36 Months

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bekkhus, Mona; Rutter, Michael; Barker, Edward D.; Borge, Anne I. H.

    2011-01-01

    Children growing up in disharmonious families with anxious/depressed mothers are at risk for emotional and behavioral difficulties, however whether these associations reflect postnatal environment, prenatal exposure, or an overall liability is still unclear. This study used prospectively collected data from 24,259 participants of the Norwegian…

  20. ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS ASSOCIATED WITH MENTAL RETARDATION AND DEVELOPMENT DISABILITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Abstract

    A number of environmental agents have been shown to demonstrate neurotoxic effects either in human or laboratory animal studies. Critical windows of vulnerability to the effects of these agents occur both pre- and postnatally. The nervous system is relatively un...

  1. Environmental Factors Affecting Preschoolers' Motor Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Venetsanou, Fotini; Kambas, Antonis

    2010-01-01

    The process of development occurs according to the pattern established by the genetic potential and also by the influence of environmental factors. The aim of the present study was to focus on the main environmental factors affecting motor development. The review of the literature revealed that family features, such as socioeconomic status,

  2. Environmental Factors Affecting Preschoolers' Motor Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Venetsanou, Fotini; Kambas, Antonis

    2010-01-01

    The process of development occurs according to the pattern established by the genetic potential and also by the influence of environmental factors. The aim of the present study was to focus on the main environmental factors affecting motor development. The review of the literature revealed that family features, such as socioeconomic status,…

  3. Emergence of brain-derived neurotrophic factor-induced postsynaptic potentiation of NMDA currents during the postnatal maturation of the Kölliker–Fuse nucleus of rat

    PubMed Central

    Kron, Miriam; Reuter, Julia; Gerhardt, Ellen; Manzke, Till; Zhang, Weiqi; Dutschmann, Mathias

    2008-01-01

    The Kölliker–Fuse nucleus (KF) contributes essentially to respiratory pattern formation and adaptation of breathing to afferent information. Systems physiology suggests that these KF functions depend on NMDA receptors (NMDA-R). Recent investigations revealed postnatal changes in the modulation of glutamatergic neurotransmission by brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in the KF. Therefore, we investigated postnatal changes in NMDA-R subunit composition and postsynaptic modulation of NMDA-R-mediated currents by BDNF in KF slice preparations derived from three age groups (neonatal: postnatal day (P) 1–5; intermediate: P6–13; juvenile: P14–21). Immunohistochemistry showed a developmental up-regulation of the NR2D subunit. This correlated with a developmental increase in decay time of NMDA currents and a decline of desensitization in response to repetitive exogenous NMDA applications. Thus, developmental up-regulation of the NR2D subunit, which reduces the Mg2+ block of NMDA-R, causes these specific changes in NMDA current characteristics. This may determine the NMDA-R-dependent function of the mature KF in the control of respiratory phase transition. Subsequent experiments revealed that bath-application of BDNF progressively potentiated these repetitively evoked NMDA currents only in intermediate and juvenile age groups. Pharmacological inhibition of protein kinase C (PKC), as a downstream component of the BDNF–tyrosine kinase B receptor (trkB) signalling, prevented BDNF-induced potentiation of NMDA currents. BDNF-induced potentiation of NMDA currents in later developmental stages might be essential for synaptic plasticity during the adaptation of the breathing pattern in response to peripheral/central commands. The lack of plasticity in neonatal neurones strengthens the hypothesis that the respiratory network becomes permissive for activity-dependent plasticity with ongoing postnatal development. PMID:18339694

  4. Temporal expression patterns of insulin-like growth factor binding protein-4 in the embryonic and postnatal rat brain

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background IGFBP-4 has been considered as a factor involving in development of the central nervous system (CNS), but its role needs to be further clarified. In present study, the localization of IGFBP-4 expression in the embryonic forebrain, midbrain and hindbrain was determined using immunohistochemistry, and the levels of IGFBP-4 protein and mRNA were semi-quantified using RT-PCR and Western blot in the embryonic (forebrain, midbrain and hindbrain) and postnatal brain (cerebral cortex, cerebellum and midbrain). Results A clear immunoreactivity of IGFBP-4 covered almost the entire embryonic brain (forebrain, midbrain, hindbrain) from E10.5 to E18.5, except for the area near the ventricle from E14.5. The change of IGFBP-4 mRNA level was regularly from E10.5 to E18.5: its expression peaked at E13.5 and E14.5, followed by gradual decreasing from E15.5. The expression of IGFBP-4 protein was similar to that of mRNA in embryonic stage. After birth, the pattern of IGFBP-4 expression was shown to be rather divergent in different brain areas. In the cerebral cortex, the IGFBP-4 mRNA increased gradually after birth (P0), while the protein showed little changes from P0 to P28, but decreased significantly at P70. In the cerebellum, the IGFBP-4 mRNA decreased gradually from P0, reached the lowest level at P21, and then increased again. However, its protein level gradually increased from P0 to P70. In the midbrain, the IGFBP-4 mRNA first decreased and reached its lowest level at P28 before it increased, while the protein remained constant from P0 to P70. At P7, P14, P21, P28 and P70, the levels of IGFBP-4 mRNA in the cerebral cortex were significantly higher than that in the cerebellum or in the midbrain. Differently, the protein levels in the cerebellum were significantly higher than that either in the cerebral cortex or in the midbrain at P14, P21, P28 and P70. Conclusions The temporal expression pattern of IGFBP-4 in the embryonic brain from E10.5 to E18.5 was consistent with the course of neurogenesis in the ventricular zone, suggesting an important role of IGFBP-4 in regulating differentiation of neural stem cells. A strikingly higher abundance of the IGFBP-4 protein observed in the cerebellum from P14 to P70 suggests that IGFBP-4 may participate in the maintenance of cerebellar plasticity. PMID:24175938

  5. Early postnatal handling and environmental enrichment improve the behavioral responses of 17-month-old 3xTg-AD and non-transgenic mice in the Forced Swim Test in a gender-dependent manner.

    PubMed

    Torres-Lista, Virginia; Giménez-Llort, Lydia

    2015-11-01

    Forced Swimming Test (FST) models behavioural despair in animals by loss of motivation to respond or the refusal to escape. The present study was aimed at characterizing genetic (genotype and gender) and environmental factors (age/stage of disease and rearing conditions: C, standard; H, early postnatal handling; EE, environmental enrichment consisting in physical exercise as well as social and object enrichment) that may modulate the poor behavioural and cognitive flexibility response we have recently described in 12-month-old male 3xTg-AD mice in the FST. The comprehensive analysis of the ethogram shown in the FST considered the intervals of the test (0-2 and 2-6min), all the elicited behavioural responses (immobility, swimming and climbing) and their features (total duration and frequency of episodes). The long persistence of behaviours found in 17-month-old (late-stages of disease) 3xTg-AD mice was comparable to that recently described in males at 12 months of age (beginning of advanced stages) but also suggested increased age-dependent frailty in both genotypes. The poor behavioral flexibility of 3xTg-AD mice to elicit the behavioural despair shown by the NTg mice, was also found in the female gender. Finally, the present work demonstrates that early-life interventions were able to improve the time and frequency of episodes of immobility, being more evident in the female gender of both old NTg and 3xTg-AD mice. Ontogenic modulation by early-postnatal handling resulted in a more effective long-term improvement of the elicited behaviours in the FST than that achieved by environmental enrichment. The results talk in favor of the beneficence of early-life interventions on ageing in both healthy and disease conditions. PMID:26431900

  6. Factor Structure and Psychometric Properties of English and Spanish Versions of the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale Among Hispanic Women in a Primary Care Setting

    PubMed Central

    Hartley, Chelsey M.; Barroso, Nicole; Rey, Yasmin; Pettit, Jeremy W.; Bagner, Daniel M.

    2015-01-01

    Background Although a number of studies have examined the factor structure of the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) in predominately White or African American samples, no published research has reported on the factor structure among Hispanic women who reside in the United States. Objective The current study examined the factor structure of the EPDS among Hispanic mothers in the United States. Method Among 220 Hispanic women, drawn from a pediatric primary care setting, with an infant aged 0 to 10 months, 6 structural models guided by the empirical literature were evaluated using confirmatory factor analysis. Results Results supported a 2-factor model of depression and anxiety as the best fitting model. Multigroup models supported the factorial invariance across women who completed the EDPS in English and Spanish. Conclusion These findings provide initial support for the 2-factor structure of the EPDS among Hispanic women in the United States. PMID:24807217

  7. Convergence of genetic and environmental factors on parvalbumin-positive interneurons in schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Zhihong; Cowell, Rita M.; Nakazawa, Kazu

    2013-01-01

    Schizophrenia etiology is thought to involve an interaction between genetic and environmental factors during postnatal brain development. However, there is a fundamental gap in our understanding of the molecular mechanisms by which environmental factors interact with genetic susceptibility to trigger symptom onset and disease progression. In this review, we summarize the most recent findings implicating oxidative stress as one mechanism by which environmental insults, especially early life social stress, impact the development of schizophrenia. Based on a review of the literature and the results of our own animal model, we suggest that environmental stressors such as social isolation render parvalbumin-positive interneurons (PVIs) vulnerable to oxidative stress. We previously reported that social isolation stress exacerbates many of the schizophrenia-like phenotypes seen in a conditional genetic mouse model in which NMDA receptors (NMDARs) are selectively ablated in half of cortical and hippocampal interneurons during early postnatal development (Belforte et al., 2010). We have since revealed that this social isolation-induced effect is caused by impairments in the antioxidant defense capacity in the PVIs in which NMDARs are ablated. We propose that this effect is mediated by the down-regulation of PGC-1?, a master regulator of mitochondrial energy metabolism and anti-oxidant defense, following the deletion of NMDARs (Jiang et al., 2013). Other potential molecular mechanisms underlying redox dysfunction upon gene and environmental interaction will be discussed, with a focus on the unique properties of PVIs. PMID:24027504

  8. Dorsal raphe serotonin neurons in mice: immature hyperexcitability transitions to adult state during first three postnatal weeks suggesting sensitive period for environmental perturbation.

    PubMed

    Rood, Benjamin D; Calizo, Lyngine H; Piel, David; Spangler, Zachary P; Campbell, Kaitlin; Beck, Sheryl G

    2014-04-01

    Trauma during early life is a major risk factor for the development of anxiety disorders and suggests that the developing brain may be particularly sensitive to perturbation. Increased vulnerability most likely involves altering neural circuits involved in emotional regulation. The role of serotonin in emotional regulation is well established, but little is known about the postnatal development of the raphe where serotonin is made. Using whole-cell patch-clamp recording and immunohistochemistry, we tested whether serotonin circuitry in the dorsal and median raphe was functionally mature during the first 3 postnatal weeks in mice. Serotonin neurons at postnatal day 4 (P4) were hyperexcitable. The increased excitability was due to depolarized resting membrane potential, increased resistance, increased firing rate, lack of 5-HT1A autoreceptor response, and lack of GABA synaptic activity. Over the next 2 weeks, membrane resistance decreased and resting membrane potential hyperpolarized due in part to potassium current activation. The 5-HT1A autoreceptor-mediated inhibition did not develop until P21. The frequency of spontaneous inhibitory and excitatory events increased as neurons extended and refined their dendritic arbor. Serotonin colocalized with vGlut3 at P4 as in adulthood, suggesting enhanced release of glutamate alongside enhanced serotonin release. Because serotonin affects circuit development in other brain regions, altering the developmental trajectory of serotonin neuron excitability and release could have many downstream consequences. We conclude that serotonin neuron structure and function change substantially during the first 3 weeks of life during which external stressors could potentially alter circuit formation. PMID:24695701

  9. Postnatal handling increases the expression of cAMP-inducible transcription factors in the rat hippocampus: the effects of thyroid hormones and serotonin.

    PubMed

    Meaney, M J; Diorio, J; Francis, D; Weaver, S; Yau, J; Chapman, K; Seckl, J R

    2000-05-15

    Postnatal handling increases glucocorticoid receptor expression in the rat hippocampus, thus altering the regulation of hypothalamic synthesis of corticotropin-releasing hormone and the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal response to stress. The effect on glucocorticoid receptor gene expression represents one mechanism by which the early environment can exert a long-term effect on neural development. The handling effect on hippocampal glucocorticoid receptor expression is dependent on peripheral thyroid hormone release and the activation of ascending serotonergic pathways. In primary hippocampal cell cultures, serotonin (5-HT) increases glucocorticoid receptor expression, and this effect appears to be mediated by increased cAMP levels. In the current studies we examined the in vivo effects of handling on hippocampal cAMP-protein kinase A (PKA) activity. In 7-d-old rat pups, we found that (1) postnatal handling increased adenylyl cyclase activity and hippocampal cAMP levels, (2) the effect of handling on cAMP levels was completely blocked by treatment with either propylthiouracil (PTU), a thyroid hormone synthesis inhibitor, or the 5-HT receptor antagonist, ketanserin, and (3) handling also increased hippocampal PKA activity. We then examined the effects of handling on cAMP-inducible transcription factors. Handling rapidly increased levels of the mRNAs for nerve growth factor-inducible factor A (NGFI-A) (zif268, krox24) and activator protein-2 (AP-2) as well as for NGFI-A and AP-2 immunoreactivity throughout the hippocampus. Finally, we found that the effects of handling on NGFI-A and AP-2 expression were significantly reduced by concurrent treatment with either PTU or ketanserin, effects that paralleled those on cAMP formation. NGFI-A and AP-2 have been implicated in the regulation of glucocorticoid receptor expression during development. Thus, these findings suggest that postnatal handling might alter glucocorticoid receptor gene expression via cAMP-PKA pathways involving the activation of NGFI-A and AP-2. PMID:10804232

  10. Vandalism: Environmental and Social Factors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, Gregory; Devlin, Ann Sloan

    2003-01-01

    To explore the relationship between vandalism, college residence hall size, and a number of social factors, 688 college students completed the Core Alcohol and Drug Survey (Presley, Meilman, & Lyerla, 1994), the University Residence Environment Scale (Moos, 1988), and answered questions about their television habits and athletic participation.…

  11. Environmental Factors Influencing Epidemic Cholera

    PubMed Central

    Jutla, Antarpreet; Whitcombe, Elizabeth; Hasan, Nur; Haley, Bradd; Akanda, Ali; Huq, Anwar; Alam, Munir; Sack, R. Bradley; Colwell, Rita

    2013-01-01

    Cholera outbreak following the earthquake of 2010 in Haiti has reaffirmed that the disease is a major public health threat. Vibrio cholerae is autochthonous to aquatic environment, hence, it cannot be eradicated but hydroclimatology-based prediction and prevention is an achievable goal. Using data from the 1800s, we describe uniqueness in seasonality and mechanism of occurrence of cholera in the epidemic regions of Asia and Latin America. Epidemic regions are located near regional rivers and are characterized by sporadic outbreaks, which are likely to be initiated during episodes of prevailing warm air temperature with low river flows, creating favorable environmental conditions for growth of cholera bacteria. Heavy rainfall, through inundation or breakdown of sanitary infrastructure, accelerates interaction between contaminated water and human activities, resulting in an epidemic. This causal mechanism is markedly different from endemic cholera where tidal intrusion of seawater carrying bacteria from estuary to inland regions, results in outbreaks. PMID:23897993

  12. Environmental factors influencing epidemic cholera.

    PubMed

    Jutla, Antarpreet; Whitcombe, Elizabeth; Hasan, Nur; Haley, Bradd; Akanda, Ali; Huq, Anwar; Alam, Munir; Sack, R Bradley; Colwell, Rita

    2013-09-01

    Cholera outbreak following the earthquake of 2010 in Haiti has reaffirmed that the disease is a major public health threat. Vibrio cholerae is autochthonous to aquatic environment, hence, it cannot be eradicated but hydroclimatology-based prediction and prevention is an achievable goal. Using data from the 1800s, we describe uniqueness in seasonality and mechanism of occurrence of cholera in the epidemic regions of Asia and Latin America. Epidemic regions are located near regional rivers and are characterized by sporadic outbreaks, which are likely to be initiated during episodes of prevailing warm air temperature with low river flows, creating favorable environmental conditions for growth of cholera bacteria. Heavy rainfall, through inundation or breakdown of sanitary infrastructure, accelerates interaction between contaminated water and human activities, resulting in an epidemic. This causal mechanism is markedly different from endemic cholera where tidal intrusion of seawater carrying bacteria from estuary to inland regions, results in outbreaks. PMID:23897993

  13. Expression of the insulin-like growth factor binding proteins during postnatal development of the murine mammary gland.

    PubMed

    Allar, Michael A; Wood, Teresa L

    2004-05-01

    IGF-I and IGF-II have known roles in postnatal development of the mammary gland. In contrast, the function of the high-affinity IGF binding proteins (IGFBPs) in mammary growth and differentiation is largely unknown. The goal of these studies was to determine the patterns and levels of IGFBP expression during postnatal growth of the murine mammary gland. IGFBP-1 to -5 proteins were detected in mammary tissue by immunoblotting during both pubertal and pregnancy-induced growth; however, the regulation of each IGFBP was distinct through these developmental periods. IGFBP-2 to -5 mRNAs were readily detectable in the developing gland by in situ hybridization analyses but were expressed in distinct cellular sites. IGFBP-3 and -5 mRNAs were expressed in the developing epithelial structures and in isolated stromal cells during ductal growth and alveolar differentiation. In the terminal end buds (TEBs), IGFBP-3 mRNA expression was consistent with its localization in the cap cells, whereas IGFBP-5 was highly expressed in the body cells of the TEB. In contrast, IGFBP-2 and -4 mRNAs were expressed predominantly in stromal cells. IGFBP-2 mRNA was localized to restricted sites in the neck of the TEB and along the ductal structures, whereas IGFBP-4 mRNA was widely expressed in the stroma surrounding the epithelial structures. Protein and mRNA expression for most of the IGFBPs decreased during lactational ages. Levels of IGFBP-2 and -5 protein increased after pup removal during forced involution. Taken together, these data suggest important functions for the family of IGFBPs during postnatal growth and differentiation of the mammary epithelium. PMID:14749361

  14. Environmental Risk Factors for Inflammatory Bowel Disease

    PubMed Central

    Molodecky, Natalie A.

    2010-01-01

    Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is characterized by chronic inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract and is associated with significant morbidity. The etiology of IBD has been extensively studied during the last several decades; however, causative factors in disease pathology are not yet fully understood. IBD is thought to result from the interaction between genetic and environmental factors that influence the normal intestinal commensal flora to trigger an inappropriate mucosal immune response. Although many IBD susceptibility genes have been discovered, similar advances in defining environmental risk factors have lagged. A number of environmental risk factors have been explored, including smoking, appendectomy, oral contraceptives, diet, breastfeeding, infections/ vaccinations, antibiotics, and childhood hygiene. However, most of these factors have demonstrated inconsistent findings, thus making additional studies necessary to better understand the etiology of IBD. PMID:20567592

  15. Factors Contributing to Institutions Achieving Environmental Sustainability

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    James, Matthew; Card, Karen

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to determine what factors contributed to three universities achieving environmental sustainability. Design/methodology/approach: A case study methodology was used to determine how each factor contributed to the institutions' sustainability. Site visits, fieldwork, document reviews, and interviews with

  16. Factors Contributing to Institutions Achieving Environmental Sustainability

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    James, Matthew; Card, Karen

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to determine what factors contributed to three universities achieving environmental sustainability. Design/methodology/approach: A case study methodology was used to determine how each factor contributed to the institutions' sustainability. Site visits, fieldwork, document reviews, and interviews with…

  17. Relationship of postnatal depressive symptoms to infant temperament, maternal expectations, social support and other potential risk factors: findings from a large Australian cross-sectional study

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background From 2000 a routine survey of mothers with newborn infants was commenced in South Western Sydney. The survey included the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS). The aim of the study was to determine the prevalence and risk factors for postnatal depressive symptoms in women living in metropolitan Sydney, Australia. Methods Mothers (n=15,389) delivering in 2002 and 2003 were assessed at 23 weeks after delivery for risk factors for depressive symptoms. The binary outcome variables were EPDS >9 and >12. Logistic regression was used for the multivariate analysis. Results The prevalence of EPDS >9 was 16.93 per 100 (95% CI: 16.34 to 17.52) and EPDS >12 was 7.73 per 100 (95% CI: 6.96 to 7.78). The final parsimonious logistic regression models included measures of infant behaviour, financial stress, mothers expectation of motherhood, emotional support, sole parenthood, social support and mothers country of birth. Conclusions Infant temperament and unmet maternal expectations have a strong association with depressive symptoms with implications for the design of both preventative and treatment strategies. The findings also support the proposition that social exclusion and social isolation are important determinants of maternal depression. PMID:23234239

  18. Potential Environmental Factors in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis.

    PubMed

    Oskarsson, Björn; Horton, D Kevin; Mitsumoto, Hiroshi

    2015-11-01

    The causes of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) are largely unknown, and may always be multiple, including environmental factors. Monogenetic determinants of ALS are involved in roughly 20% of all cases (including 10% familial cases). Less well understood multigenetic causes may contribute to another 20% to 80%. Environmental factors likely play a role in the development of ALS in susceptible individuals, but proved causation remains elusive. This article discusses the possible factors of male gender (males are selectively exposed to different influences, or genetically predisposed to be susceptible), smoking, military service, exercise, electrical exposure, heavy metals, agricultural chemicals, and geographic clusters. PMID:26515627

  19. Sex-dependent expression of a transcription factor, Ad4BP, regulating steroidogenic P-450 genes in the gonads during prenatal and postnatal rat development.

    PubMed

    Hatano, O; Takayama, K; Imai, T; Waterman, M R; Takakusu, A; Omura, T; Morohashi, K

    1994-10-01

    We investigated the expression of Ad4BP (also known as SF-1), a transcription factor regulating steroidogenic P-450 genes, in the steroidogenic tissues such as adrenal glands, testes and ovaries through the prenatal and postnatal life of rats. Ad4BP was detected in the primordial adrenal glands and gonads of the 13.5 day postcoitum (d.p.c.) fetus. After the appearance of Ad4BP, a steroidogenic P-450 (P-450(SCC)) was also detected in the adrenal glands and its amount increased gradually. In the fetal gonads of 14.5 d.p.c., a significant amount of Ad4BP was detected in the somatic cells of the testes, whereas only a trace amount was present in the ovaries. The sexually dimorphic expression of Ad4BP continued throughout the neonatal age. Drastic alterations occurred during the first to third week of postnatal age accompanied by functional and structural changes of the gonads. The expression of Ad4BP in the testes attained a maximal level one week after birth and decreased markedly thereafter. By contrast, increase of Ad4BP in the ovary was detected after the first postnatal week. Expression of P-450c17 showed a good correlation with the proliferation of Leydig cells in the testes and theca cells in the ovaries. Immunohistochemical studies revealed the presence of Ad4BP in Sertoli cells as well as Leydig cells up to the pubertal age. In the adult rat testis, however, staining of Sertoli cells decreased significantly. Ad4BP was detected in granulosa, theca, corpus luteum and interstitial gland cells in the ovary although the expression levels in granulosa cells varied among follicles. It is suggested that the Müllerian inhibitory substance gene may be a target of Ad4BP since this gene has a conserved Ad4-binding site within the promoter, which is recognized by Ad4BP expressed in the fetal testes. PMID:7607070

  20. Geographic and environmental factors in pediatric cancer

    SciTech Connect

    Gordis, L.

    1986-07-15

    It is important to determine the relative contributions of genetic and environmental factors to the etiology of childhood cancer in order to elucidate the pathogenic mechanisms involved and to develop effective means of primary prevention. Geographic differences in cancer incidence as well as changes in incidence over calendar time have long been used to generate clues to possible etiologic agents. The important role of genetic factors in childhood cancer is clear, and is exemplified by the observations in retinoblastoma. The importance of the contributions of environmental factors in general and of specific factors in particular, to the etiology of cancers in children, has proven more difficult to determine. A variety of environmental factors have been implicated to varying degrees in the etiology of different childhood cancers. These factors include physical agents such as radiation, chemical agents such as nitrosamines, and organic solvents, and infectious agents such as the Epstein-Barr virus. The observations that certain compounds may act as teratogens when a prenatal exposure occurs early in pregnancy and as carcinogens when the exposure occurs late in pregnancy, suggests that there may be a continuum of teratogenesis and carcinogenesis. This finding has major implications for the possible biologic mechanisms that could be involved in childhood cancers and for the design of future research of their etiology and prevention. The etiology of childhood cancer should be viewed as an interaction of environmental factors to which the child or his parent were exposed together with varying degrees of genetically determined susceptibility of the child to the carcinogenic effects of these factors.

  1. ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS AFFECTING BREAST CANCER SUSCEPTIBILITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Environmental Factors Affecting Breast Cancer Susceptibility
    Suzanne. E. Fenton
    US EPA, ORD, MD-67 NHEERL, Reproductive Toxicology Division, Research Triangle Park, NC 27711.

    Breast cancer is still the most common malignancy afflicting women in the Western world. Alt...

  2. Environmental Risk Factors for Inflammatory Bowel Disease

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Crohn’s disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC) are chronic immunologically mediated diseases that often have a relapsing-remitting course in young persons. Genetic-risk polymorphisms explain less than one third of the heritability of disease. Epidemiologic and laboratory data suggest that environmental factors play a significant role in influencing the risk and natural history of disease. Smoking is the most widely and consistently described risk factor. It, however, increases the risk of CD while conferring protection against UC. The gut microbiome is a key component in the development of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Several external factors potentially exert an effect by influencing the composition of the gut microbiome or disrupting the intestinal barrier. These external influences include the use of antibiotics or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and the presence of enteric infections. Data on diet have been inconsistent, but high fiber intake, particularly of soluble fiber, appears to protect against CD, whereas protein intake may increase disease risk. Vitamin D may also play an important protective role, particularly in patients with CD. Neurobehavioral factors, such as stress and depression, also influence the risk of IBD. Systematic and rigorous studies of environmental exposures in the management of IBD are needed. In particular, studies of whether environmental factors can be modified to reduce the likelihood of relapse or improve patient outcomes would be valuable. PMID:23935543

  3. Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and environmental factors

    PubMed Central

    Bozzoni, Virginia; Pansarasa, Orietta; Diamanti, Luca; Nosari, Guido; Cereda, Cristina; Ceroni, Mauro

    2016-01-01

    Summary Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a fatal neurodegenerative disorder that affects central and peripheral motor neuron cells. Its etiology is unknown, although a relationship between genetic background and environmental factors may play a major role in triggering the neurodegeneration. In this review, we analyze the role of environmental factors in ALS: heavy metals, electromagnetic fields and electric shocks, pesticides, β-N-methylamino-L-alanine, physical activity and the controversial role of sports. The literature on the single issues is analyzed in an attempt to clarify, as clearly as possible, whether each risk factor significantly contributes to the disease pathogenesis. After summarizing conflicting observations and data, the authors provide a final synthetic statement. PMID:27027889

  4. Environmental factors shaping ungulate abundances in Poland.

    PubMed

    Borowik, Tomasz; Cornulier, Thomas; Jędrzejewska, Bogumiła

    2013-01-01

    Population densities of large herbivores are determined by the diverse effects of density-dependent and independent environmental factors. In this study, we used the official 1998-2003 inventory data on ungulate numbers from 462 forest districts and 23 national parks across Poland to determine the roles of various environmental factors in shaping country-wide spatial patterns of ungulate abundances. Spatially explicit generalized additive mixed models showed that different sets of environmental variables explained 39 to 50 % of the variation in red deer Cervus elaphus, wild boar Sus scrofa, and roe deer Capreolus capreolus abundances. For all of the studied species, low forest cover and the mean January temperature were the most important factors limiting their numbers. Woodland cover above 40-50 % held the highest densities for these species. Wild boar and roe deer were more numerous in deciduous or mixed woodlands within a matrix of arable land. Furthermore, we found significant positive effects of marshes and water bodies on wild boar abundances. A juxtaposition of obtained results with ongoing environmental changes (global warming, increase in forest cover) may indicate future growth in ungulate distributions and numbers. PMID:24244044

  5. The Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale: Screening Tool for Postpartum Anxiety as Well? Findings from a Confirmatory Factor Analysis of the Hebrew Version.

    PubMed

    Bina, Rena; Harrington, Donna

    2016-04-01

    Objectives The Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) was originally created as a uni-dimensional scale to screen for postpartum depression (PPD); however, evidence from various studies suggests that it is a multi-dimensional scale measuring mainly anxiety in addition to depression. The factor structure of the EPDS seems to differ across various language translations, raising questions regarding its stability. This study examined the factor structure of the Hebrew version of the EPDS to assess whether it is uni- or multi-dimensional. Methods Seven hundred and fifteen (n = 715) women were screened at 6 weeks postpartum using the Hebrew version of the EPDS. Confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) was used to test four models derived from the literature. Results Of the four CFA models tested, a 9-item two factor model fit the data best, with one factor representing an underlying depression construct and the other representing an underlying anxiety construct. Conclusions for Practice The Hebrew version of the EPDS appears to consist of depression and anxiety sub-scales. Given the widespread PPD screening initiatives, anxiety symptoms should be addressed in addition to depressive symptoms, and a short scale, such as the EPDS, assessing both may be efficient. PMID:26649883

  6. Remote sensing of environmental factors affecting health

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jovanovic, Petar

    The purpose of this paper is to present the results of research to identify, by satellite imagery, parameters of the environment affecting health on Earth. Thus, we suggest expanding the application of space technology to preventive medicine, as a new field in the peaceful uses of outer space. The scope of the study includes all parts of the environment, natural and man-made, and all kinds of protection of life: human, animal and vegetation health. The general objective is to consider and classify those factors, detectable from space, that affect or are relevant to health and may be found in the air, water, sea, soil, land, vegetation, as well as those linked to climate, industry, energy production, development works, irrigation systems, and human settlements. The special objective is the classification of environmental factors detectable from space, that are linked to communicable or chronic endemic diseases or health problems. The method of identifying the factors affecting health was the parallel study of environmental epidemiological and biological parameters. The role of environmental factors common to both human and animal populations is discussed. Conclusive findings are formulated and possible applications, both scientific and practical, in other sectors are also discussed.

  7. Development of gut immunoglobulin A production in piglet in response to innate and environmental factors.

    PubMed

    Levast, Benoît; Berri, Mustapha; Wilson, Heather L; Meurens, François; Salmon, Henri

    2014-05-01

    The current review focuses on pre- and post-natal development of intestinal immunoglobulin A (IgA) production in pig. IgA production is influenced by intrinsic genetic factors in the foetus as well as extrinsic environmental factors during the post-natal period. At birth, piglets are exposed to new antigens through maternal colostrums/milk as well as exogenous microbiota. This exposure to new antigens is critical for the proper development of the gut mucosal immune system and is characterized mainly by the establishment of IgA response. A second critical period for neonatal intestinal immune system development occurs at weaning time when the gut environment is exposed to new dietary antigens. Neonate needs to establish oral tolerance and in the absence of protective milk need to fight potential new pathogens. To improve knowledge about the immune response in the neonates, it is important to identify intrinsic and extrinsic factors which influence the intestinal immune system development and to elucidate their mechanism of action. PMID:24384471

  8. The Genetic and Environmental Factors for Keratoconus

    PubMed Central

    Gordon-Shaag, Ariela; Millodot, Michel; Shneor, Einat; Liu, Yutao

    2015-01-01

    Keratoconus (KC) is the most common cornea ectatic disorder. It is characterized by a cone-shaped thin cornea leading to myopia, irregular astigmatism, and vision impairment. It affects all ethnic groups and both genders. Both environmental and genetic factors may contribute to its pathogenesis. This review is to summarize the current research development in KC epidemiology and genetic etiology. Environmental factors include but are not limited to eye rubbing, atopy, sun exposure, and geography. Genetic discoveries have been reviewed with evidence from family-based linkage analysis and fine mapping in linkage region, genome-wide association studies, and candidate genes analyses. A number of genes have been discovered at a relatively rapid pace. The detailed molecular mechanism underlying KC pathogenesis will significantly advance our understanding of KC and promote the development of potential therapies. PMID:26075261

  9. The Genetic and Environmental Factors Underlying Hypospadias.

    PubMed

    Bouty, Aurore; Ayers, Katie L; Pask, Andrew; Heloury, Yves; Sinclair, Andrew H

    2015-01-01

    Hypospadias results from a failure of urethral closure in the male phallus and affects 1 in 200-300 boys. It is thought to be due to a combination of genetic and environmental factors. The development of the penis progresses in 2 stages: an initial hormone-independent phase and a secondary hormone-dependent phase. Here, we review the molecular pathways that contribute to each of these stages, drawing on studies from both human and mouse models. Hypospadias can occur when normal development of the phallus is disrupted, and we provide evidence that mutations in genes underlying this developmental process are causative. Finally, we discuss the environmental factors that may contribute to hypospadias and their potential immediate and transgenerational epigenetic impacts. PMID:26613581

  10. Activation of the nuclear factor-κB pathway during postnatal lung inflammation preserves alveolarization by suppressing macrophage inflammatory protein-2.

    PubMed

    Hou, Yanli; Liu, Min; Husted, Cristiana; Chen, Chihhsin; Thiagarajan, Kavitha; Johns, Jennifer L; Rao, Shailaja P; Alvira, Cristina M

    2015-09-15

    A significant portion of lung development is completed postnatally during alveolarization, rendering the immature lung vulnerable to inflammatory stimuli that can disrupt lung structure and function. Although the NF-κB pathway has well-recognized pro-inflammatory functions, novel anti-inflammatory and developmental roles for NF-κB have recently been described. Thus, to determine how NF-κB modulates alveolarization during inflammation, we exposed postnatal day 6 mice to vehicle (PBS), systemic lipopolysaccharide (LPS), or the combination of LPS and the global NF-κB pathway inhibitor BAY 11-7082 (LPS + BAY). LPS impaired alveolarization, decreased lung cell proliferation, and reduced epithelial growth factor expression. BAY exaggerated these detrimental effects of LPS, further suppressing proliferation and disrupting pulmonary angiogenesis, an essential component of alveolarization. The more severe pathology induced by LPS + BAY was associated with marked increases in lung and plasma levels of macrophage inflammatory protein-2 (MIP-2). Experiments using primary neonatal pulmonary endothelial cells (PEC) demonstrated that MIP-2 directly impaired neonatal PEC migration in vitro; and neutralization of MIP-2 in vivo preserved lung cell proliferation and pulmonary angiogenesis and prevented the more severe alveolar disruption induced by the combined treatment of LPS + BAY. Taken together, these studies demonstrate a key anti-inflammatory function of the NF-κB pathway in the early alveolar lung that functions to mitigate the detrimental effects of inflammation on pulmonary angiogenesis and alveolarization. Furthermore, these data suggest that neutralization of MIP-2 may represent a novel therapeutic target that could be beneficial in preserving lung growth in premature infants exposed to inflammatory stress. PMID:26163511

  11. Reducing postnatal morbidity.

    PubMed

    Bick, Debra

    2012-06-01

    There is evidence from large observational studies that women experience a range of physical and psychological health problems after birth, many of which do not resolve within the postnatal period. The current content, duration and definitions of postnatal care are not appropriate to meet the increasingly complex health and social needs of women giving birth in the UK today. Despite evidence of how the revisions to the content and timing of care could improve the clinical and cost effectiveness of universal NHS postnatal services, and positive policy support for evidence based care, there is evidence that postnatal standards are declining. PMID:22860357

  12. Environmental pollutants and lifestyle factors induce oxidative stress and poor prenatal development.

    PubMed

    Al-Gubory, Kaïs H

    2014-07-01

    Developmental toxicity caused by exposure to a mixture of environmental pollutants has become a major health concern. Human-made chemicals, including xenoestrogens, pesticides and heavy metals, as well as unhealthy lifestyle behaviours, mainly tobacco smoking, alcohol consumption and medical drug abuse, are major factors that adversely influence prenatal development and increase susceptibility of offspring to diseases. There is evidence to suggest that the developmental toxicological mechanisms of chemicals and lifestyle factors involve the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and cellular oxidative damage. Overproduction of ROS induces oxidative stress, a state where increased ROS generation overwhelms antioxidant protection and subsequently leads to oxidative damage of cellular macromolecules. Data on the involvement of oxidative stress in the mechanism of developmental toxicity following exposure to environmental pollutants are reviewed in an attempt to provide an updated basis for future studies on the toxic effect of such pollutants, particularly the notion of increased risk for developmental toxicity due to combined and cumulative exposure to various environmental pollutants. The aims of such studies are to better understand the mechanisms by which environmental pollutants adversely affect conceptus development and to elucidate the impact of cumulative exposures to multiple pollutants on post-natal development and health outcomes. Developmental toxicity caused by exposure to mixture of environmental pollutants has become a major health concern. Human-made chemicals, including xenoestrogens, pesticides and heavy metals, as well as unhealthy lifestyle behaviors, mainly tobacco smoking, alcohol consumption and medical drug abuse, are major factors that adversely influence prenatal development and increase the susceptibility of offspring to development complications and diseases. There is evidence to suggest that the developmental toxicological mechanisms of human-made chemicals and unhealthy lifestyle factors involve the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and cellular oxidative damage. Overproduction of ROS induces oxidative stress, a state where increased generation of ROS overwhelms antioxidant protection and subsequently leads to oxidative damage of cellular macromolecules. Exposure to various environmental pollutants induces synergic and cumulative dose-additive adverse effects on prenatal development, pregnancy outcomes and neonate health. Data from the literature on the involvement of oxidative stress in the mechanism of developmental toxicity following in vivo exposure to environmental pollutants will be reviewed in an attempt to provide an updated basis for future studies on the toxic effect of such pollutants, particularly the notion of increased risk for developmental toxicity due to combined and cumulative exposure to various environmental pollutants. The aims of such studies are to better understand the mechanisms by which environmental pollutants adversely affect conceptus development and to elucidate the impact of cumulative exposures to multiple pollutants on postnatal development and health outcomes. PMID:24813750

  13. Analysis of gene–environment interactions in postnatal development of the mammalian intestine

    PubMed Central

    Rakoff-Nahoum, Seth; Kong, Yong; Kleinstein, Steven H.; Subramanian, Sathish; Ahern, Philip P.; Gordon, Jeffrey I.; Medzhitov, Ruslan

    2015-01-01

    Unlike mammalian embryogenesis, which takes place in the relatively predictable and stable environment of the uterus, postnatal development can be affected by a multitude of highly variable environmental factors, including diet, exposure to noxious substances, and microorganisms. Microbial colonization of the intestine is thought to play a particularly important role in postnatal development of the gastrointestinal, metabolic, and immune systems. Major changes in environmental exposure occur right after birth, upon weaning, and during pubertal maturation into adulthood. These transitions include dramatic changes in intestinal contents and require appropriate adaptations to meet changes in functional demands. Here, we attempt to both characterize and provide mechanistic insights into postnatal intestinal ontogeny. We investigated changes in global intestinal gene expression through postnatal developmental transitions. We report profound alterations in small and large intestinal transcriptional programs that accompany both weaning and puberty in WT mice. Using myeloid differentiation factor 88 (MyD88)/TIR-domain-containing adapter-inducing interferon-β (TRIF) double knockout littermates, we define the role of toll-like receptors (TLRs) and interleukin (IL)-1 receptor family member signaling in postnatal gene expression programs and select ontogeny-specific phenotypes, such as vascular and smooth muscle development and neonatal epithelial and mast cell homeostasis. Metaanalysis of the effect of the microbiota on intestinal gene expression allowed for mechanistic classification of developmentally regulated genes by TLR/IL-1R (TIR) signaling and/or indigenous microbes. We find that practically every aspect of intestinal physiology is affected by postnatal transitions. Developmental timing, microbial colonization, and TIR signaling seem to play distinct and specific roles in regulation of gene-expression programs throughout postnatal development. PMID:25691701

  14. Cardiac risk factors: environmental, sociodemographic, and behavioral cardiovascular risk factors.

    PubMed

    Anthony, David; George, Paul; Eaton, Charles B

    2014-06-01

    Several environmental exposures are associated with increased risk of coronary heart disease (CHD). Exposure to secondhand smoke may increase the risk by as much as 25% to 30%. Exposure to third hand smoke, residual components of tobacco smoke that remain in the environment after a cigarette is extinguished, also appears to increase risk. These residual components can remain in rooms and automobiles for up to 30 years and enter the body through the skin or via inhalation or ingestion. Exposure to particulate matter air pollution from automobile emissions, power plants, and other sources is yet another environmental risk factor for CHD, resulting in tens of thousands of deaths annually in the United States. Exposure to other environmental toxins, particularly bisphenol A and phthalates, also has been linked to CHD. There are sociodemographic risks for CHD, with numerous studies showing that lower socioeconomic status is associated with higher risk. Behavioral risk factors include poor diet, such as frequent consumption of fast food and processed meals; sleep disturbance; and psychological stress, particularly related to marital or work issues. Finally, although high alcohol consumption is associated with increased CHD risk, moderate alcohol consumption (ie, less than 1 to 2 drinks/day), particularly of wine and possibly beer, appears to reduce the risk. PMID:24936715

  15. The role of environmental factors in asthma.

    PubMed

    Strachan, D P

    2000-01-01

    Although the everyday experience of asthmatic patients provides ample anecdotal evidence that environmental exposures provoke bronchospasm, it has proved more difficult to assess the impact of air quality on the timing of asthma attacks and the prevalence of asthma in populations. Spectacular 'asthma epidemic days' are sometimes attributable to exceptional outdoor aero-allergen exposures. By comparison, effects of inorganic particles and gaseous pollutants in outdoor air on the incidence of asthma attacks are subtle and poorly quantified. Environmental tobacco smoke and mould growth are the indoor factors most consistently associated with respiratory morbidity, but their roles in initiating allergic asthma remain uncertain. Evidence relating asthma risk to fumes from gas cooking, and to allergens from dust mites and household pets remains confused and controversial. It is unlikely that trends in either outdoor or indoor air pollution have contributed substantially to the rise in prevalence of asthma and allergic disease in recent decades. PMID:11359625

  16. Environmental risk factors of systemic sclerosis.

    PubMed

    Marie, Isabelle; Gehanno, Jean-François

    2015-09-01

    Systemic sclerosis (SSc) has a complex pathogenesis. Although, there is a growing evidence that environmental factors have an impact on alterations and modulation of epigenetic determinants, resulting in SSc onset and progression. A marked correlation has thus been found between SSc onset and occupational exposure to crystalline silica and the following organic solvents: white spirit, aromatic solvents, chlorinated solvents, trichloroethylene, and ketones; the risk associated with high cumulative exposure to silica and organic solvents further appears to be strongly increased in SSc. Altogether, occupational exposure should be systematically checked in all SSc patients at diagnosis, as (1) exposed patients seem to develop more severe forms of SSc and (2) the identification of the occupational agents will allow its interruption, which may lead to potential improvement of SSc outcome. By contrast, based on current published data, there is insufficient evidence that exposure to other chemical agents (including notably pesticides as well as personal care such as silicone and hair dye), physical agents (ionizing radiation, ultraviolet radiation, electric and magnetic fields), and biological agents (infections and diet, foods, and dietary contaminants) is a causative factor of SSc. Further investigations are still warranted to identify other environmental factors that may be associated with SSc onset and progression. PMID:26141606

  17. Hepatocyte expression of Serum Response Factor is essential for liver function, hepatocyte proliferation and survival, and postnatal body growth in mice

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Kai; Battle, Michele A.; Misra, Ravi P.; Duncan, Stephen A.

    2010-01-01

    Serum response factor (SRF) is a transcription factor that binds to a CarG box motif within the serum response element (SRE) of genes that are expressed in response to mitogens. SRF plays essential roles in muscle and nervous system development; however, little is known about the role of SRF during liver growth and function. To examine the function of SRF in the liver, we generated mice in which the Srf gene was specifically disrupted in hepatocytes. The survival of mice lacking hepatic SRF activity was lower than that of control mice; moreover, surviving mutant mice had lower blood glucose and triglyceride levels compared with control mice. In addition, SrfloxP/loxP AlfpCre mice were smaller and had severely depressed levels of serum IGF1. Srf-deficient livers were also smaller than control livers and liver-cell proliferation and viability were compromised. Gene array analysis of SRF depleted livers revealed a reduction in many mRNAs, including those encoding components of the growth hormone/IGF1 pathway, cyclins, several metabolic regulators, and cytochrome p450 enzymes. Conclusion SRF is essential for hepatocyte proliferation and survival, liver function, and control of postnatal body growth by regulating hepatocyte gene expression. PMID:19205030

  18. Psoriasis: familial predisposition and environmental factors.

    PubMed Central

    Kavli, G; Førde, O H; Arnesen, E; Stenvold, S E

    1985-01-01

    In a survey for coronary risk factors 14 667 adult men and women answered a questionnaire on lifestyle, diet, and health, including whether they had psoriasis. The overall prevalence of psoriasis was 4.79% in men and 4.85% in women. The data showed an increasing incidence of psoriasis. The association with family history, lifestyle, diet, and health was explored by multiple regression analysis. The occurrence of psoriasis in first degree relatives contributed to more than 90% of the explained variance for both sexes. Of the other variables, only the positive association with rheumatoid arthritis was significant in both sexes. It is concluded that the examined environmental factors have only minor effects on the prevalence of psoriasis. PMID:3931797

  19. Perineal skin injury: extrinsic environmental risk factors.

    PubMed

    Faria, D T; Shwayder, T; Krull, E A

    1996-08-01

    Little research has been performed to evaluate factors that may exacerbate perineal skin injury in the adult population. But extensive research has been done and knowledge has been gained from studies with diaper dermatitis in infants. Our objectives in writing this article are to define the anatomical area affected, the terms used, and to review the available literature for diaper dermatitis in infants, elucidating the similarities and differences between diaper dermatitis in infants and perineal dermatitis in adults. The six extrinsic environmental factors that have been identified and extensively studied in diaper dermatitis are skin wetness, urine, ammonia, feces, local skin pH and microorganisms. Although the complex interactions of the six factors are still not totally defined, we do know that to prevent perineal skin injury, it is helpful to prevent excessive skin hydration, minimize the interaction of urine and feces, minimize local microorganisms, and maintain skin near its physiologic pH. In general, the six extrinsic factors can be extrapolated and applied to the care of adults. Further research in adult fecal enzymes and pH is still necessary. PMID:8826118

  20. The first 1000 days of life: prenatal and postnatal risk factors for morbidity and growth in a birth cohort in southern India

    PubMed Central

    Kattula, Deepthi; Sarkar, Rajiv; Sivarathinaswamy, Prabhu; Velusamy, Vasanthakumar; Venugopal, Srinivasan; Naumova, Elena N; Muliyil, Jayaprakash; Ward, Honorine; Kang, Gagandeep

    2014-01-01

    Objective To estimate the burden and assess prenatal and postnatal determinants of illnesses experienced by children residing in a semiurban slum, during the first 1000 days of life. Design Community-based birth cohort Setting Southern India Participants Four hundred and ninety-seven children of 561 pregnant women recruited and followed for 2 years with surveillance and anthropometry. Main outcome measure Incidence rates of illness; rates of clinic visits and hospitalisations; factors associated with low birth weight, various illnesses and growth. Results Data on 10 377.7 child-months of follow-up estimated an average rate of 14.8 illnesses/child-year. Gastrointestinal and respiratory illnesses were 20.6% and 47.8% of the total disease burden, respectively. The hospitalisation rate reduced from 46/100 child-years during infancy to 19/100 child-years in the second year. Anaemia during pregnancy (OR=2.3, 95% CI=1.08 to 5.18), less than four antenatal visits (OR=6.8, 95% CI=2.1 to 22.5) and preterm birth (OR=3.3, 95% CI=1.1 to 9.7) were independent prenatal risk factors for low birth weight. Female gender (HR=0.88, 95% CI=0.79 to 0.99) and 6 months of exclusive breast feeding (HR=0.76, 95% CI=0.66 to 0.88) offered protection against all morbidity. Average monthly height and weight gain were lower in female child and children exclusively breast fed for 6 months. Conclusions The high morbidity in Indian slum children in the first 1000 days of life was mainly due to prenatal factors and gastrointestinal and respiratory illness. Policymakers need disease prevalence and pathways to target high-risk groups with appropriate interventions in the community. PMID:25056979

  1. Epidemiologic Tools to Study the Influence of Environmental Factors on Fecundity and Pregnancy-related Outcomes

    PubMed Central

    Slama, Rémy; Ballester, Ferran; Casas, Maribel; Cordier, Sylvaine; Eggesbø, Merete; Iniguez, Carmen; Nieuwenhuijsen, Mark; Philippat, Claire; Rey, Sylvie; Vandentorren, Stéphanie; Vrijheid, Martine

    2014-01-01

    Adverse pregnancy outcomes entail a large health burden for the mother and offspring; a part of it might be avoided by better understanding the role of environmental factors in their etiology. Our aims were to review the assessment tools to characterize fecundity troubles and pregnancy-related outcomes in human populations and their sensitivity to environmental factors. For each outcome, we reviewed the possible study designs, main sources of bias, and their suggested cures. In terms of study design, for most pregnancy outcomes, cohorts with recruitment early during or even before pregnancy allow efficient characterization of pregnancy-related events, time-varying confounders, and in utero exposures that may impact birth outcomes and child health. Studies on congenital anomalies require specific designs, assessment of anomalies in medical pregnancy terminations, and, for congenital anomalies diagnosed postnatally, follow-up during several months after birth. Statistical analyses should take into account environmental exposures during the relevant time windows; survival models are an appropriate approach for fecundity, fetal loss, and gestational duration/preterm delivery. Analysis of gestational duration could distinguish pregnancies according to delivery induction (and possibly pregnancy-related conditions). In conclusion, careful design and analysis are required to better characterize environmental effects on human reproduction. PMID:24363355

  2. Lactoferrin up-regulates intestinal gene expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factors BDNF, UCHL1 and alkaline phosphatase activity to alleviate early weaning diarrhea in postnatal piglets.

    PubMed

    Yang, Changwei; Zhu, Xi; Liu, Ni; Chen, Yue; Gan, Hexia; Troy, Frederic A; Wang, Bing

    2014-08-01

    The molecular mechanisms underlying how dietary lactoferrin (Lf) impacts gut development and maturation and protects against early weaning diarrhea are not well understood. In this study, we supplemented postnatal piglets with an Lf at a dose level of 155 and 285 mg/kg/day from 3 to 38 days following birth. Our findings show that the high dose of Lf up-regulated messenger RNA expression levels of genes encoding brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and ubiquitin carboxy-terminal hydrolase L1 (ubiquitin thiolesterase (UCHL1) and, to a lesser extent, glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor, in the duodenum (P<.05). Piglets in the high and low Lf group had 30% and 7% larger jejunal crypts compared with the control group (P<.05). Escherichia coli 16S rRNA copy number per gram of ascending colon contents was significantly reduced (P=.001), while the copy number of Bifidobacteria and Lactobacillus spp. was not affected. In addition, Lf increased intestinal alkaline phosphatase activity (P<.05) and delayed the onset of food transitional diarrhea, reducing its frequency and duration (P<.05). The incidence of diarrhea in the high and low Lf groups was decreased 54% and 15%, respectively, compared with the control group (P=.035). In summary, these findings provide new evidence that dietary Lf supplementation up-regulated gene expression of BDNF and UCHL1, decreased the colon microbiota of E. coli, improved gut maturation and reduced early weaning diarrhea in piglets. The molecular basis underlying these findings suggests that Lf may enhance gut development and immune function by providing new insight into the gut-brain-microbe axis that has not been previously reported. PMID:24824862

  3. Seasonal variation in human reproduction: environmental factors.

    PubMed

    Bronson, F H

    1995-06-01

    Almost all human populations exhibit seasonal variation in births, owing mostly to seasonal variation in the frequency of conception. This review focuses on the degree to which environmental factors like nutrition, temperature and photoperiod contribute to these seasonal patterns by acting directly on the reproductive axis. The reproductive strategy of humans is basically that of the apes: Humans have the capacity to reproduce continuously, albeit slowly, unless inhibited by environmental influences. Two, and perhaps three, environmental factors probably act routinely as seasonal inhibitors in some human populations. First, it seems likely that ovulation is regulated seasonally in populations experiencing seasonal variation in food availability. More specifically, it seems likely that inadequate food intake or the increased energy expenditure required to obtain food, or both, can delay menarche, suppress the frequency of ovulation in the nonlactating adult, and prolong lactational amenorrhea in these populations on a seasonal basis. This action is most easily seen in tropical subsistence societies where food availability often varies greatly owing to seasonal variation in rainfall; hence births in these populations often correlate with rainfall. Second, it seems likely that seasonally high temperatures suppress spermatogenesis enough to influence the incidence of fertilization in hotter latitudes, but possibly only in males wearing clothing that diminishes scrotal cooling. Since most of our knowledge about this phenomenon comes from temperate latitudes, the sensitivity of spermatogenesis in both human and nonhuman primates to heat in the tropics needs further study. It is quite possible that high temperatures suppress ovulation and early embryo survival seasonally in some of these same populations. Since we know less than desired about the effect of heat stress on ovulation and early pregnancy in nonhuman mammals, and nothing at all about it in humans or any of the other primates, this is an important area for future research. Third, correlational data suggest that there may be some degree of regulation of reproduction by photoperiod in humans at middle to higher latitudes. Populations at these latitudes often show a peak in presumed conceptions associated with the vernal equinox. On the other hand, evidence gathered by neuroendocrinologists tends to argue against reproductive photoresponsiveness in humans. PMID:7610233

  4. Cancer prevention: environmental, industrial, and occupational factors

    SciTech Connect

    Nelson, N

    1981-03-01

    The possible contribution of occupational and environmental exposures to cancer has been known for many years and is now a highly mature field of study. By the 1950s, a substantial list of agents of processes had been identified as associated with cancer of one organ or another. In the last several decades a number of additions have been made to the list. No doubt more will be found in the future. The last decade, especially, has brought increased public attention to cancer in the workplace. The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 has been a significant contributor to the current increase in attention given to cancer occurrences arising from occupational exposures. These have led to increasingly stringent regulations and control requirements. The nature of the chemical and physical factors in occupational cancer will be noted and the estimates of the contribution of occupational factors to total cancer occurrence will be considered. In addition to the workplace exposures, other ways in which cancer may be associated with technology will be described. Included among these are, community air pollution, water contaminants, dietary additives, and hair dyes.

  5. [Prenatal and postnatal nutrition: long term impact on health].

    PubMed

    Toca, María Del Carmen; Tonietti, Miriam; Vecchiarelli, Carmen

    2015-06-01

    Nutrition in early stages of life is one of the most influential environmental factors for the good development of organs and systems and the wellbeing of the child. Epigenetic mechanisms can explain how prenatal and postnatal nutrition affects genes expression with the subsequent risk of immune and metabolic diseases. The objective of this paper is to update the knowledge of the role the nutritional status and dietary practices of pregnant women and the child's feeding patterns over the first year of life have in the risk of future diseases. PMID:25996324

  6. Role of brain-derived neurotrophic factor in the excitatory-inhibitory imbalance during the critical period of postnatal respiratory development in the rat.

    PubMed

    Gao, Xiu-Ping; Zhang, Hanmeng; Wong-Riley, Margaret

    2015-11-01

    The critical period of respiratory development in rats is a narrow window toward the end of the second postnatal week (P12-13), when abrupt neurochemical, electrophysiological, and ventilatory changes occur, when inhibition dominates over excitation, and when the animals' response to hypoxia is the weakest. The goal of this study was to further test our hypothesis that a major mechanism underlying the synaptic imbalance during the critical period is a reduced expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and its TrkB receptors. Our aims were to determine (1) that the inhibitory dominance observed in hypoglossal motoneurons during the critical period was also demonstrable in a key respiratory chemosensor, NTSVL; (2) if in vivo application of a TrkB agonist, 7,8-DHF, would prevent, but a TrkB antagonist, ANA-12, would accentuate the synaptic imbalance; and (3) if hypoxia would also heighten the imbalance. Our results indicate that (1) the synaptic imbalance was evident in the NTSVL during the critical period; (2) intraperitoneal injections of 7,8-DHF prevented the synaptic imbalance during the critical period, whereas ANA-12 in vivo accentuated such an imbalance; and (3) acute hypoxia induced the weakest response in both the amplitude and frequency of sEPSCs during the critical period, but it increased the frequency of sIPSCs during the critical period. Thus, our findings are consistent with and strengthen our hypothesis that BDNF and TrkB play a significant role in inducing a synaptic imbalance during the critical period of respiratory development in the rat. PMID:26603459

  7. Effects of postnatal ethanol exposure at different developmental phases on neurotrophic factors and phosphorylated proteins on signal transductions in rat brain.

    PubMed

    Tsuji, Ryozo; Fattori, Vittorio; Abe, Shin-ichi; Costa, Lucio G; Kobayashi, Kumiko

    2008-01-01

    Exposure to ethanol during development induces severe brain damage resulting in a number of CNS dysfunctions including microencephaly and mental retardation in humans and in laboratory animals. The most vulnerable period to ethanol neurotoxicity coincides with the peak of brain growth spurt. Recently, neurotrophic factors and/or their signal transduction pathways have been reported as a potential relevant target for the developmental neurotoxicity of ethanol. The present studies were designed to investigate the effects of ethanol given in various developmental phases during the brain growth spurt in rats. Rat pups were assigned to the three treatment groups and treated with 5 g/kg of ethanol for three days, on postnatal days (PND) 2-4, 6-8 or 13-15. Whole brain weights were reduced only in the PND 6-8 group concurrently with the reduction of GDNF mRNA in cortex in this group. BDNF mRNA expression was reduced in both the PND 6-8 and 13-15 groups, while mRNA expressions of NT-3 and NGF were unchanged in all three groups. Phospho-Akt level was mostly reduced in the PND 6-8 group. Both phospho-MAPK and p-70S6 kinase levels were decreased in all groups whereas no changes were observed in either phospho-PKCzeta or CREB level. The phosphorylation of Akt was immediately inhibited after single administration of ethanol, and its inhibition was correlated with variations in blood ethanol concentration. These findings suggest that GDNF and the phosphorylation of Akt play a possible key role in the ethanol-induced developmental neurotoxicity. PMID:18358698

  8. Role of brain-derived neurotrophic factor in the excitatory–inhibitory imbalance during the critical period of postnatal respiratory development in the rat

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Xiu-ping; Zhang, Hanmeng; Wong-Riley, Margaret

    2015-01-01

    The critical period of respiratory development in rats is a narrow window toward the end of the second postnatal week (P12–13), when abrupt neurochemical, electrophysiological, and ventilatory changes occur, when inhibition dominates over excitation, and when the animals’ response to hypoxia is the weakest. The goal of this study was to further test our hypothesis that a major mechanism underlying the synaptic imbalance during the critical period is a reduced expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and its TrkB receptors. Our aims were to determine (1) that the inhibitory dominance observed in hypoglossal motoneurons during the critical period was also demonstrable in a key respiratory chemosensor, NTSVL; (2) if in vivo application of a TrkB agonist, 7,8-DHF, would prevent, but a TrkB antagonist, ANA-12, would accentuate the synaptic imbalance; and (3) if hypoxia would also heighten the imbalance. Our results indicate that (1) the synaptic imbalance was evident in the NTSVL during the critical period; (2) intraperitoneal injections of 7,8-DHF prevented the synaptic imbalance during the critical period, whereas ANA-12 in vivo accentuated such an imbalance; and (3) acute hypoxia induced the weakest response in both the amplitude and frequency of sEPSCs during the critical period, but it increased the frequency of sIPSCs during the critical period. Thus, our findings are consistent with and strengthen our hypothesis that BDNF and TrkB play a significant role in inducing a synaptic imbalance during the critical period of respiratory development in the rat. PMID:26603459

  9. Protective environmental factors for neuromyelitis optica

    PubMed Central

    Grandhe, Siri; Weinfurtner, Kelley; Krupp, Lauren; Belman, Anita; Chitnis, Tanuja; Ness, Jayne; Weinstock-Guttman, Bianca; Gorman, Mark; Patterson, Marc; Rodriguez, Moses; Lotze, Tim; Aaen, Gregory; Mowry, Ellen M.; Rose, John W.; Simmons, Timothy; Casper, T. Charles; James, Judith; Waubant, Emmanuelle

    2014-01-01

    Objective: To determine whether early environmental factors, such as cesarean delivery, breastfeeding, and exposure to smoking or herpes viruses, are associated with neuromyelitis optica (NMO) risk in children. Methods: This is a case-control study of pediatric NMO, multiple sclerosis (MS), and healthy subjects. Early-life exposures were obtained by standardized questionnaire. Epstein-Barr virus, cytomegalovirus, and herpes simplex virus 1 antibody responses were determined by ELISA. Multivariate logistic regression models were used to adjust for age at sampling, sex, race, and ethnicity. Results: Early-life exposures were obtained from 36 pediatric subjects with NMO, 491 with MS, and 224 healthy controls. Daycare (odds ratio [OR] 0.33, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.14, 0.78; p < 0.01) and breastfeeding (OR 0.42, 95% CI 0.18, 0.99; p = 0.05) were associated with lower odds of having NMO compared with healthy subjects. Cesarean delivery tended to be associated with 2-fold-higher odds of NMO compared with having MS/clinically isolated syndrome (OR 1.98, 95% CI 0.88, 4.59; p = 0.12) or with being healthy (OR 1.95, 95% CI 0.81, 4.71; p = 0.14). Sera and DNA were available for 31 subjects with NMO, 189 with MS, and 94 healthy controls. Epstein-Barr virus, herpes simplex virus 1, cytomegalovirus exposure, and being HLA-DRB1*15 positive were not associated with odds of having NMO compared with healthy subjects. Conclusions: Exposure to other young children may be an early protective factor against the development of NMO, as previously reported for MS, consistent with the hypothesis that infections contribute to disease risk modification. Unlike MS, pediatric NMO does not appear to be associated with exposures to common herpes viruses. PMID:25339213

  10. Sleep deprivation and the postnatal blues.

    PubMed

    Wilkie, G; Shapiro, C M

    1992-05-01

    This prospective study of 63 women was designed to investigate the relationship between sleep disruption prior to the birth, during labour and in the early postpartum period and the subsequent development of the postnatal blues. The results from this preliminary study suggest that two factors: (a) a night-time labour; and (b) a history of sleep disruption in the latter stages of pregnancy, may have aetiological importance in the development of postnatal blues. There was little evidence from this study to suggest that sleep disruption on the nights following the birth, the third sleep factor investigated, had any impact on the expression of the blues. PMID:1593506

  11. Postnatal epigenetic modification of glucocorticoid receptor gene in preterm infants: a prospective cohort study

    PubMed Central

    Kantake, Masato; Yoshitake, Hiroshi; Ishikawa, Hitoshi; Araki, Yoshihiko; Shimizu, Toshiaki

    2014-01-01

    Objective To examine the environmental effects on cytosine methylation of preterm infant's DNA, because early life experiences are considered to influence the physiological and mental health of an individual through epigenetic modification of DNA. Design A prospective cohort study, comparison of epigenetic differences in the glucocorticoid receptor (GR) gene between healthy term and preterm infants. Setting Neonatal Intensive Care Unit in a Japanese University Hospital. Participants A cohort of 40 (20 term and 20 preterm) infants was recruited on the day of birth, and peripheral blood was obtained from each infant at birth and on postnatal day 4. Main outcome measures The methylation rates in the 1-F promoter region of the GR gene using the Mquant method. Results The methylation rate increased significantly between postnatal days 0 and 4 in preterm infants but remained stable in term infants. Thus, the methylation rate was significantly higher in preterm than in term infants at postnatal day 4. Several perinatal parameters were significantly correlated with this change in the methylation rate. Logistic regression analysis revealed that methylation rates at postnatal day 4 predicted the occurrence of later complications that required glucocorticoid administration during the neonatal period. No gene polymorphism was detected within the GR promoter region analysed. Conclusions Although further large-scale studies are needed to detect the environmental factors that explain the difference in epigenetic modification among infants after birth, our data show that the postnatal environment influences epigenetic programming of GR expression through methylation of the GR gene promoter in premature infants, which may result in relative glucocorticoid insufficiency during the postnatal period. PMID:25023132

  12. Environmental risk factors and allergic bronchial asthma.

    PubMed

    D'Amato, G; Liccardi, G; D'Amato, M; Holgate, S

    2005-09-01

    The prevalence of allergic respiratory diseases such as bronchial asthma has increased in recent years, especially in industrialized countries. A change in the genetic predisposition is an unlikely cause of the increase in allergic diseases because genetic changes in a population require several generations. Consequently, this increase may be explained by changes in environmental factors, including indoor and outdoor air pollution. Over the past two decades, there has been increasing interest in studies of air pollution and its effects on human health. Although the role played by outdoor pollutants in allergic sensitization of the airways has yet to be clarified, a body of evidence suggests that urbanization, with its high levels of vehicle emissions, and a westernized lifestyle are linked to the rising frequency of respiratory allergic diseases observed in most industrialized countries, and there is considerable evidence that asthmatic persons are at increased risk of developing asthma exacerbations with exposure to ozone, nitrogen dioxide, sulphur dioxide and inhalable particulate matter. However, it is not easy to evaluate the impact of air pollution on the timing of asthma exacerbations and on the prevalence of asthma in general. As concentrations of airborne allergens and air pollutants are frequently increased contemporaneously, an enhanced IgE-mediated response to aeroallergens and enhanced airway inflammation could account for the increasing frequency of allergic respiratory allergy and bronchial asthma. Pollinosis is frequently used to study the interrelationship between air pollution and respiratory allergy. Climatic factors (temperature, wind speed, humidity, thunderstorms, etc) can affect both components (biological and chemical) of this interaction. By attaching to the surface of pollen grains and of plant-derived particles of paucimicronic size, pollutants could modify not only the morphology of these antigen-carrying agents but also their allergenic potential. In addition, by inducing airway inflammation, which increases airway permeability, pollutants overcome the mucosal barrier and could be able to "prime" allergen-induced responses. There are also observations that a thunderstorm occurring during pollen season can induce severe asthma attacks in pollinosis patients. After rupture by thunderstorm, pollen grains may release part of their cytoplasmic content, including inhalable, allergen-carrying paucimicronic particles. PMID:16164436

  13. Review of environmental factors affecting hearing.

    PubMed Central

    Mills, J H; Going, J A

    1982-01-01

    The major nongenetic causes of sensorineural hearing loss are exposure to noise, aging, ototoxic drugs, viral and bacterial infections, and interactions between these factors. Regarding exposure to continuous noise, the data base from laboratory and field studies indicates that a risk of hearing loss is present when noise levels exceed 75-80 dBA. As noise level, duration and number of exposures increase so does risk. The data base for other forms of noise (intermittent, impact) is not as established. Risk of hearing loss due to impulse noise increases as the peak SPL exceeds 145-155 dB and as the duration of the impulse, the number of impulses and the number of exposures increase. High-level acoustic impulses can cause severe, permanent hearing loss. Interaction between some steady-state noises and some acoustic impulses can be synergistic, producing extensive injuries to the organ of Corti. Noise can also interact synergistically with some aminoglycoside antibiotics to produce severe injuries in the inner ear. These antibiotics are also capable of producing hearing loss and indeed may do so in up to 55% of the one million persons who receive aminoglycoside antibiotics during the course of treatment for tuberculosis or severe gram-negative infections. Bacterial and viral infections may also produce mild to severe hearing loss. With the development of rubella vaccine and Rhogam, cytomegalovirus may have become the most common cause of congenital deafness. Aging is also a major cause of hearing loss. Exposure to occupational and environmental noise, certain diseases and life styles (diet, stress, drugs) may interact with the specific effects of aging. The result is moderate to severe hearing loss in a majority of older persons. PMID:7044773

  14. Environmental factors associated with a spectrum of neurodevelopmental deficits.

    PubMed

    Mendola, Pauline; Selevan, Sherry G; Gutter, Suzanne; Rice, Deborah

    2002-01-01

    A number of environmental agents have been shown to demonstrate neurotoxic effects either in human or laboratory animal studies. Critical windows of vulnerability to the effects of these agents occur both pre- and postnatally. The nervous system is relatively unique in that different parts are responsible for different functional domains, and these develop at different times (e.g., motor control, sensory, intelligence and attention). In addition, the many cell types in the brain have different windows of vulnerability with varying sensitivities to environmental agents. This review focuses on two environmental agents, lead and methylmercury, to illustrate the neurobehavioral and cognitive effects that can result from early life exposures. Special attention is paid to distinguishing between the effects detected following episodes of poisoning and those detected following lower dose exposures. Perinatal and childhood exposure to high doses of lead results in encephalopathy and convulsions. Lower-dose lead exposures have been associated with impairment in intellectual function and attention. At high levels of prenatal exposure, methylmercury produces mental retardation, cerebral palsy and visual and auditory deficits in children of exposed mothers. At lower levels of methylmercury exposure, the effects in children have been more subtle. Other environmental neurotoxicants that have been shown to produce developmental neurotoxicity include polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), dioxins, pesticides, ionizing radiation, environmental tobacco smoke, and maternal use of alcohol, tobacco, marijuana and cocaine. Exposure to environmental agents with neurotoxic effects can result in a spectrum of adverse outcomes from severe mental retardation and disability to more subtle changes in function depending on the timing and dose of the chemical agent. PMID:12216063

  15. Early Life Environmental Exposures and Height, Hypertension, and Cardiovascular Risk Factors Among Older Adults in India

    PubMed Central

    Ho, Jessica Y.

    2015-01-01

    Environmental exposures like rainfall and temperature influence infectious disease exposure and nutrition, two key early life conditions linked to later life health. However, few tests of whether early life environmental exposures impact adult health have been performed, particularly in developing countries. This study examines the effects of experiencing rainfall and temperature shocks during gestation and up through the first four years after birth on measured height, hypertension, and other cardiovascular risk factors using data on adults aged 50 and above (N=1,036) from the 2007–2008 World Health Organization Study on Global Ageing and Adult Health (SAGE) and district-level meteorological data from India. Results from multivariate logistic regressions show that negative rainfall shocks during gestation and positive rainfall shocks during the post-birth period increase the risk of having adult hypertension and CVD risk factors. Exposure to negative rainfall shocks and positive temperature shocks in the post-birth period increases the likelihood of falling within the lowest height decile. Prenatal shocks may influence nutrition in utero, while postnatal shocks may increase exposure to infectious diseases and malnutrition. The results suggest that gestation and the first two years after birth are critical periods when rainfall and temperature shocks take on increased importance for adult health. PMID:26266969

  16. Environmental Factors in Primary Biliary Cirrhosis

    PubMed Central

    Juran, Brian D.; Lazaridis, Konstantinos N.

    2014-01-01

    The etiology of the autoimmune liver disease primary biliary cirrhosis (PBC) remains largely unresolved, owing in large part to the complexity of interaction between environmental and genetic contributors underlying disease development. Observations of disease clustering, differences in geographical prevalence, and seasonality of diagnosis rates suggest the environmental component to PBC is strong, and epidemiological studies have consistently found cigarette smoking and history of urinary tract infection to be associated with PBC. Current evidence implicates molecular mimicry as a primary mechanism driving loss of tolerance and subsequent autoimmunity in PBC, yet other environmentally influenced disease processes are likely to be involved in pathogenesis. In this review, the authors provide an overview of current findings and touch on potential mechanisms behind the environmental component of PBC. PMID:25057950

  17. Environmental factors in primary biliary cirrhosis.

    PubMed

    Juran, Brian D; Lazaridis, Konstantinos N

    2014-08-01

    The etiology of the autoimmune liver disease primary biliary cirrhosis (PBC) remains largely unresolved, owing in large part to the complexity of interaction between environmental and genetic contributors underlying disease development. Observations of disease clustering, differences in geographical prevalence, and seasonality of diagnosis rates suggest the environmental component to PBC is strong, and epidemiological studies have consistently found cigarette smoking and history of urinary tract infection to be associated with PBC. Current evidence implicates molecular mimicry as a primary mechanism driving loss of tolerance and subsequent autoimmunity in PBC, yet other environmentally influenced disease processes are likely to be involved in pathogenesis. In this review, the authors provide an overview of current findings and touch on potential mechanisms behind the environmental component of PBC. PMID:25057950

  18. Exposure to environmental and lifestyle factors and attention-deficit / hyperactivity disorder in children - a review of epidemiological studies.

    PubMed

    Polańska, Kinga; Jurewicz, Joanna; Hanke, Wojciech

    2012-09-01

    Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is one of the most common neurodevelopmental disorders in children. Although the mechanisms that lead to the development of ADHD remain unclear, genetic and environmental factors have been implicated. These include heavy metals and chemical exposures, nutritional and lifestyle/psychosocial factors. The aim of this review was to investigate the association between ADHD or ADHD-related symptoms and widespread environmental factors such as phthalates, bisphenol A (BPA), tobacco smoke, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), polyfluoroalkyl chemicals (PFCs) and alcohol. Medline, PubMed and Ebsco search was performed to identify the studies which analyze the association of prenatal and postnatal child exposure to environmental toxicants and lifestyle factors and ADHD or ADHD-related symptoms. The review is restricted to human studies published since 2000 in English in peer reviewed journals. Despite much research has been done on the association between environmental risk factors and ADHD or ADHD symptoms, results are not consistent. Most studies in this field, focused on exposure to tobacco smoke, found an association between that exposure and ADHD and ADHD symptoms. On the other hand, the impact of phthalates, BPA, PFCs, PAHs and alcohol is less frequently investigated and does not allow a firm conclusion regarding the association with the outcomes of interest. PMID:23086631

  19. Environmental pollutants as risk factors for neurodegenerative disorders: Alzheimer and Parkinson diseases

    PubMed Central

    Chin-Chan, Miguel; Navarro-Yepes, Juliana; Quintanilla-Vega, Betzabet

    2015-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer (AD) and Parkinson (PD) have attracted attention in last decades due to their high incidence worldwide. The etiology of these diseases is still unclear; however the role of the environment as a putative risk factor has gained importance. More worryingly is the evidence that pre- and post-natal exposures to environmental factors predispose to the onset of neurodegenerative diseases in later life. Neurotoxic metals such as lead, mercury, aluminum, cadmium and arsenic, as well as some pesticides and metal-based nanoparticles have been involved in AD due to their ability to increase beta-amyloid (Aβ) peptide and the phosphorylation of Tau protein (P-Tau), causing senile/amyloid plaques and neurofibrillary tangles (NFTs) characteristic of AD. The exposure to lead, manganese, solvents and some pesticides has been related to hallmarks of PD such as mitochondrial dysfunction, alterations in metal homeostasis and aggregation of proteins such as α-synuclein (α-syn), which is a key constituent of Lewy bodies (LB), a crucial factor in PD pathogenesis. Common mechanisms of environmental pollutants to increase Aβ, P-Tau, α-syn and neuronal death have been reported, including the oxidative stress mainly involved in the increase of Aβ and α-syn, and the reduced activity/protein levels of Aβ degrading enzyme (IDE)s such as neprilysin or insulin IDE. In addition, epigenetic mechanisms by maternal nutrient supplementation and exposure to heavy metals and pesticides have been proposed to lead phenotypic diversity and susceptibility to neurodegenerative diseases. This review discusses data from epidemiological and experimental studies about the role of environmental factors in the development of idiopathic AD and PD, and their mechanisms of action. PMID:25914621

  20. Environmental pollutants as risk factors for neurodegenerative disorders: Alzheimer and Parkinson diseases.

    PubMed

    Chin-Chan, Miguel; Navarro-Yepes, Juliana; Quintanilla-Vega, Betzabet

    2015-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer (AD) and Parkinson (PD) have attracted attention in last decades due to their high incidence worldwide. The etiology of these diseases is still unclear; however the role of the environment as a putative risk factor has gained importance. More worryingly is the evidence that pre- and post-natal exposures to environmental factors predispose to the onset of neurodegenerative diseases in later life. Neurotoxic metals such as lead, mercury, aluminum, cadmium and arsenic, as well as some pesticides and metal-based nanoparticles have been involved in AD due to their ability to increase beta-amyloid (Aβ) peptide and the phosphorylation of Tau protein (P-Tau), causing senile/amyloid plaques and neurofibrillary tangles (NFTs) characteristic of AD. The exposure to lead, manganese, solvents and some pesticides has been related to hallmarks of PD such as mitochondrial dysfunction, alterations in metal homeostasis and aggregation of proteins such as α-synuclein (α-syn), which is a key constituent of Lewy bodies (LB), a crucial factor in PD pathogenesis. Common mechanisms of environmental pollutants to increase Aβ, P-Tau, α-syn and neuronal death have been reported, including the oxidative stress mainly involved in the increase of Aβ and α-syn, and the reduced activity/protein levels of Aβ degrading enzyme (IDE)s such as neprilysin or insulin IDE. In addition, epigenetic mechanisms by maternal nutrient supplementation and exposure to heavy metals and pesticides have been proposed to lead phenotypic diversity and susceptibility to neurodegenerative diseases. This review discusses data from epidemiological and experimental studies about the role of environmental factors in the development of idiopathic AD and PD, and their mechanisms of action. PMID:25914621

  1. Toward postnatal reversal of ocular congenital malformations

    PubMed Central

    Sahel, José-Alain; Marazova, Katia

    2013-01-01

    Aniridia is a panocular disorder that severely affects vision in early life. Most cases are caused by dominantly inherited mutations or deletions of the PAX6 gene, which encodes a transcription factor that is essential for the development of the eye and the central nervous system. In this issue of the JCI, Gregory-Evans and colleagues demonstrate that early postnatal topical administration of an ataluren-based formulation reverses congenital malformations in the postnatal mouse eye, providing evidence that manipulation of PAX6 after birth may lead to corrective tissue remodeling. These findings offer hope that ataluren administration could be a therapeutic paradigm applicable to some major congenital eye defects. PMID:24355915

  2. EPIGENETIC TRANSGENERATIONAL ACTIONS OF ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS IN DISEASE ETIOLOGY

    PubMed Central

    Skinner, Michael K.; Manikkam, Mohan; Guerrero-Bosagna, Carlos

    2010-01-01

    The ability of environmental factors to promote a phenotype or disease state not only in the individual exposed but also in subsequent progeny for multiple generations is termed transgenerational inheritance. The majority of environmental factors such as nutrition or toxicants such as endocrine disruptors do not promote genetic mutations or alterations in DNA sequence. In contrast, these factors have the capacity to alter the epigenome. Epimutations in the germ line that become permanently programmed can allow transmission of epigenetic transgenerational phenotypes. This review provides an overview of the epigenetics and biology of how environmental factors can promote transgenerational phenotypes and disease. PMID:20074974

  3. Assessment of environmental factors affecting male fertility.

    PubMed

    Dixon, R L; Sherins, R J; Lee, I P

    1979-06-01

    Exposure to drinking water containing as much as 500 ppm aluminum chloride for periods of 30, 60, and 90 days had no apparent effect on male reproductive processes. In an attempt to correlate enzyme activity with particular spermatogenic cell types, postnatal development of testicular enzymes was studied. Eight enzymes were selected: hyaluronidase (H), lactate dehydrogenase isoenzyme-X (LDH-X), dehydrogenases of sorbitol (SDH), alpha-glycerophosphate (GPDH), glucose-6-phosphate (G6PDH), malate (MDH), glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate (G3PDH), and isocitrate (ICDH). Enzyme specific activities in testicular homogenates were determined. Two types of enzyme developmental patterns were observed. One was represented by H, LDH-X, SDH, and GPDH; and the other by G6PDH, MDH, G3PDH, and ICDH. The former was characterized by a change in enzyme activities from low in newborn to high in adult while in the latter this pattern was reversed. The two complementary enzyme systems crossed each other at puberty. Prior to puberty, only spermatogonial cells are present; sperm differentiation initiated at puberty adds spermatocytes and spermatids to the testicular cell population. Male rats were exposed to borax in their diet for periods of 30 and 60 days. Concentrations of boron were 0, 500, 1000, and 2000 ppm. At the end of each experimental period, the specific activities of the selected enzymes were determined in the testis and prostate. Correlations of enzyme activity with testicular histology and androgen activities of the male accessory organs were sought. In addition, plasma FSH, LH, and testosterone levels were measured to assess pituitary-testicular interaction. Plasma and testicular boron concentrations were determined and a minimum boron concentration which induced germinal aplasia and male infertility was estimated. In both 30 and 60 day feeding studies, male rats receiving 500 ppm failed to demonstrate any significant adverse effects. In contrast, male rats receiving 100 and 2000 ppm boron displayed a significant loss of germinal elements, although most of the Leydig and Sertoli cells appeared normal. Testicular atrophy was associated with a decrease in seminiferous tubular diameter and a marked reduction of spermatocytes and spermatogenic cells. These morphologic alterations were associated with a concomitant reduction of H, SDH, and LDH-X specific activities. In contrast, the specific activities of G3PDH and MDH were significantly elevated above control. The increase in these enzyme activities can be attributed to the relative enrichment of spermatogonial cells during the loss of spermatocytes and spermiogenic cells. Boron-induced male germinal aplasia was also associated with significantly elevated plasma FSH while plasma LH and testosterone levels were not significantly altered. Plasma testosterone levels were unaltered. Male fertility studies demonstrated that at the 500 ppm boron level, fertility was unaffected. However, at 1000 and 2000 ppm boron, male fertility was significantly reduced. Most effects were reversible within 5 weeks. However, the male group receiving 2000 ppm boron for 60 days remained sterile. There was no dose-related decrease in litter size or fetal death in utero. Therefore, the boron-induced infertility was apparently not due to a dominant lethal effect but rather to germinal aplasia. Boron appears toxic to spermatogenic cells at testicular concentrations of 6-8 ppm. PMID:446458

  4. Alterations in Postnatal Neurogenesis and Dopamine Dysregulation in Schizophrenia: A Hypothesis

    PubMed Central

    Inta, Dragos; Meyer-Lindenberg, Andreas; Gass, Peter

    2011-01-01

    An increasing number of studies demonstrate the important role of several susceptibility genes for schizophrenia, such as neuregulin-1 and DISC1, in early postnatal and adult neurogenesis. Its significance for the pathophysiology of the disease, including its relation to neurotransmitter systems implicated in schizophrenia (like the dopamine system), remains, however, unknown. Here, we review molecular and cellular components of the dopamine system associated with postnatal neurogenesis and plasticity, both in rodents and in primates, and discuss their possible implication in schizophrenia. We focus mainly on the islands of Calleja, complex aggregations of granule cells in the ventral striatum, generated early postnatally in the subventricular zone. In contrast to the involution of the primate olfactory bulb, the islands of Calleja attain their maximal development in humans, an evolution paralleled by a larger ventral subventricular zone and more connections with other structures, including temporal cortical areas. The islands of Calleja express high levels of neuronal nitric oxide (NO) synthase and D3 dopamine receptors and are densely interconnected by dopaminergic projections with the ventral tegmental area. D3 receptors modulate subventricular zone neurogenesis and dopamine release. Their genetic deletion induces striatal hyperdopaminergia. We review data indicating a high plasticity of postnatal islands of Calleja, potentially facilitating susceptibility to schizophrenia-related risk factors. In this context, we propose a new pathophysiological model, where altered neurogenesis of the islands of Calleja may contribute to dysfunction of the dopamine and NO systems and psychosis through convergence of genetic and environmental disease-associated factors. PMID:21097511

  5. Environmental Design: Focusing on Human Factors.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rydeen, James E.

    2003-01-01

    In designing schools, planners must use the criteria of health and safety, performance, comfort, and aesthetics to create a humanized physical environment that stimulates interest and provides motivation for learning and teaching. The human factors in design are sense of place, ownership, community, presence comfort, security, aesthetics,…

  6. Environmental Risk Factors in Hospital Suicide

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lieberman, Daniel Z.; Resnik, Harvey L.P.; Holder-Perkins, Vicenzio

    2004-01-01

    Suicide of hospitalized patients is the most common sentinel event reviewed by The Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations. Shorter lengths of stay, sicker patients, and higher patient to staff ratios challenge the ability of the hospital to maintain safety. Risk factors associated with the physical environment of the…

  7. Distinct responses of baseline and stress-induced corticosterone levels to genetic and environmental factors.

    PubMed

    Homberger, Benjamin; Jenni-Eiermann, Susanne; Jenni, Lukas

    2015-01-01

    Glucocorticoid (GC) hormones, i.e. corticosterone (CORT) in birds, support physiological homeostasis and facilitate adaptations to stressful situations. However, maintaining high GC levels are energetically costly and interfere with other physiological processes. To keep the balance of costs and benefits of GC hormones, various mechanisms act to adapt GC levels to environmental conditions on different timescales, i.e. over generations, between parents and their offspring and within the life-time of a single individual. We elucidated whether two strains (domesticated and wild) of grey partridges (Perdix perdix) differed in the developmental trajectories of baseline and stress response CORT throughout the first 80 days of life. We also explored the potential of prenatal and postnatal factors, e.g. parental origin, predictable vs. unpredictable food treatments, individual and social factors to modify these trajectories. Baseline CORT was similar between strains and unaffected by perinatal food treatments. It was negatively related to body size and body condition. Conversely, the CORT stress response was not markedly affected by physiological condition. It was stronger in wild than in domesticated birds and it increased with age. Birds subjected to prenatal unpredictable food supply exhibited an accelerated development of the CORT stress response which could reflect an adaptive maternal effect. We conclude that the vital role of baseline CORT may allow little adaptive scope since changes can quickly become detrimental. In contrast, the CORT stress response may show considerable adaptive potential which might ultimately support homeostasis in a changing environment. PMID:25307951

  8. Normal neonatal microbiome variation in relation to environmental factors, infection and allergy

    PubMed Central

    Madan, Juliette C.; Farzan, Shohreh F.; Hibberd, Patricia L.; Karagas, Margaret R.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose of review Bacterial colonization of the infant intestinal tract begins at birth. We are at the forefront of understanding complex relationships between bacteria and multiple parameters of health of the developing infant. Moreover, the establishment of the microbiome in the critical neonatal period is potentially foundational for lifelong health and disease susceptibility. Recent studies utilizing state-of-the-art culture-independent technologies have begun to increase our knowledge about the gut microbiome in infancy, the impact of multiple exposures, and its effects on immune response and clinical outcomes such as allergy and infection. Recent findings Postnatal exposures play a central role in the complex interactions between the nearly blank canvas of the neonatal intestine, whereas genetic factors do not appear to be a major factor. Infant microbial colonization is affected by delivery mode, dietary exposures, antibiotic exposure, and environmental toxicants. Successive microbiome acquisition in infancy is likely a determinant of early immune programming, subsequent infection, and allergy risk. Summary The novel investigation of the neonatal microbiome is beginning to unearth substantial information, with a focus on immune programming that coevolves with the developing microbiome early in life. Several exposures common to neonatal and infant populations could exert pressure on the development of the microbiome and major diseases including allergy and infection in large populations. PMID:23111681

  9. Environmental factors implicated in the causation of adverse pregnancy outcome

    PubMed Central

    Hossain, Nazli; Westerlund Triche, Elizabeth

    2009-01-01

    Adverse pregnancy outcome from environmental factors may include congenital anomalies, increased risk for miscarriage, preterm delivery, intrauterine growth restriction and still birth. Apart from adverse pregnancy outcome, there may be effects on the other reproductive functions like menstrual disorders and infertility. Environmental factors which have been implicated in adverse pregnancy outcome include smoking, video display terminals, anesthetic gases, antineoplastic drugs and exposure to lead, selenium and inorganic mercury. Amongst these, cigarette smoking during pregnancy has been the leading environmental factor for adverse pregnancy outcome. Cigarette Smoking during pregnancy continues to be a significant public health concern. Maternal smoking during pregnancy has been associated with low birth weight( < 2500g) Mothers who smoke during pregnancy are twice likely to give birth to low birth weight infants. Similarly air pollution, pesticide exposure, stress have also been associated with low birth weight and preterm delivery. This review gives an overview of the importance of environmental factors in adverse pregnancy outcome. PMID:17825680

  10. Effects of pre- and post-natal treatment with KRN633, an inhibitor of vascular endothelial growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase, on retinal vascular development and patterning in mice.

    PubMed

    Morita, Akane; Nakahara, Tsutomu; Abe, Naomichi; Kurauchi, Yuki; Mori, Asami; Sakamoto, Kenji; Nagamitsu, Tohru; Ishii, Kunio

    2014-03-01

    The impaired function of angiogenic factors, including vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), during pregnancy is associated with preeclampsia and intrauterine growth restriction. To determine how the attenuation of VEGF signals during retinal vascular development affects retinal vascular growth and patterns, we examined the effects of pre- and post-natal treatment of mice with KRN633, a VEGF receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitor, on retinal vascular development and structure. Delays in retinal vascular development were observed in the pups of mother mice that were treated daily with KRN633 (5 mg/kg/day) from embryonic day 13.5 until the day of delivery. A more marked delay was seen in pups treated with the inhibitor (5 mg/kg/day) on the day of birth and on the following day. Pups treated postnatally with KRN633 showed abnormal retinal vascular patterns, such as highly dense capillary networks and decreased numbers of central arteries and veins. The high-density vascular networks in KRN633-treated pups showed a greater sensitivity to VEGF signaling inhibition than the normal vascular networks in vehicle-treated pups. Compared to vehicle-treated pups, more severe hypoxia and stronger VEGF mRNA expression were observed in avascular areas in KRN633-treated pups. These results suggest that a short-term loss of VEGF function at the earliest stages of vascular development suppresses vascular growth, leading to abnormal vascular patterning, at least in part via mechanisms involving VEGF in the mouse retina. PMID:24462631

  11. Social anxiety disorder: A review of environmental risk factors

    PubMed Central

    Brook, Christina A; Schmidt, Louis A

    2008-01-01

    Social anxiety disorder (SAD) is a debilitating and chronic illness characterized by persistent fear of one or more social or performance situations, with a relatively high lifetime prevalence of 7% to 13% in the general population. Although the last two decades have witnessed enormous growth in the study of biological and dispositional factors underlying SAD, comparatively little attention has been directed towards environmental factors in SAD, even though there has been much ongoing work in the area. In this paper, we provide a recent review and critique of proposed environmental risk factors for SAD, focusing on traditional as well as some understudied and overlooked environmental risk factors: parenting and family environment, adverse life events, cultural and societal factors, and gender roles. We also discuss the need for research design improvements and considerations for future directions. PMID:18728768

  12. Allergic to life: Psychological factors in environmental illness

    SciTech Connect

    Simon, G.E.; Katon, W.J.; Sparks, P.J. )

    1990-07-01

    Environmental illness is an increasingly frequent and medically unexplained syndrome of allergy to common environmental agents. A recent outbreak of chemical-induced illness allowed study of psychological factors in environmental illness. Thirty-seven symptomatic plastics workers completed structured diagnostic interviews and self-report measures of somatization and psychopathology. The 13 subjects who developed environmental illness scored higher on all measures than those who did not. The greatest differences were in prior history of anxiety or depressive disorder (54% versus 4%) and number of medically unexplained physical symptoms before exposure (6.2 versus 2.9). These findings suggest that psychological vulnerability strongly influences chemical sensitivity following chemical exposure.

  13. [Aviation noise as an ecological environmental factor].

    PubMed

    Vorob'ev, O A; Krylov, Iu V; Zaritski?, V V; Skrebnev, S V; Shcherbachenko, G E

    1995-01-01

    Average diurnal doses of noise, received by aviation engineers servicing up-to-date aircrafts and living near air fields, were analyzed. The doses appeared to outnumber the normal values, especially during the work and the sleep. The examinees living in 1-2 km from air fields were proved to have significantly higher auditory thresholds for 1,000-8,000 Hz, in comparison with the examinees residing 5-6 km apart. The excessive noise associated with no occupational matters worsens the hearing restoration after the work, promotes accumulation of the hearing fatigue. Those facts were proved by experiments with audiometry and impedometry. The studies stressed the importance of aviation noise as ecologic factor. PMID:7620794

  14. Impact of Environmental Factors on the Regulation of Cyanotoxin Production

    PubMed Central

    Boopathi, Thangavelu; Ki, Jang-Seu

    2014-01-01

    Cyanobacteria are capable of thriving in almost all environments. Recent changes in climatic conditions due to increased human activities favor the occurrence and severity of harmful cyanobacterial bloom all over the world. Knowledge of the regulation of cyanotoxins by the various environmental factors is essential for effective management of toxic cyanobacterial bloom. In recent years, progress in the field of molecular mechanisms involved in cyanotoxin production has paved the way for assessing the role of various factors on the cyanotoxin production. In this review, we present an overview of the influence of various environmental factors on the production of major group of cyanotoxins, including microcystins, nodularin, cylindrospermopsin, anatoxins and saxitoxins. PMID:24967641

  15. Impact of environmental factors on the regulation of cyanotoxin production.

    PubMed

    Boopathi, Thangavelu; Ki, Jang-Seu

    2014-01-01

    Cyanobacteria are capable of thriving in almost all environments. Recent changes in climatic conditions due to increased human activities favor the occurrence and severity of harmful cyanobacterial bloom all over the world. Knowledge of the regulation of cyanotoxins by the various environmental factors is essential for effective management of toxic cyanobacterial bloom. In recent years, progress in the field of molecular mechanisms involved in cyanotoxin production has paved the way for assessing the role of various factors on the cyanotoxin production. In this review, we present an overview of the influence of various environmental factors on the production of major group of cyanotoxins, including microcystins, nodularin, cylindrospermopsin, anatoxins and saxitoxins. PMID:24967641

  16. Quantifying Environmental Limiting Factors on Tree Cover Using Geospatial Data

    PubMed Central

    Greenberg, Jonathan A.; Santos, Maria J.; Dobrowski, Solomon Z.; Vanderbilt, Vern C.; Ustin, Susan L.

    2015-01-01

    Environmental limiting factors (ELFs) are the thresholds that determine the maximum or minimum biological response for a given suite of environmental conditions. We asked the following questions: 1) Can we detect ELFs on percent tree cover across the eastern slopes of the Lake Tahoe Basin, NV? 2) How are the ELFs distributed spatially? 3) To what extent are unmeasured environmental factors limiting tree cover? ELFs are difficult to quantify as they require significant sample sizes. We addressed this by using geospatial data over a relatively large spatial extent, where the wall-to-wall sampling ensures the inclusion of rare data points which define the minimum or maximum response to environmental factors. We tested mean temperature, minimum temperature, potential evapotranspiration (PET) and PET minus precipitation (PET-P) as potential limiting factors on percent tree cover. We found that the study area showed system-wide limitations on tree cover, and each of the factors showed evidence of being limiting on tree cover. However, only 1.2% of the total area appeared to be limited by the four (4) environmental factors, suggesting other unmeasured factors are limiting much of the tree cover in the study area. Where sites were near their theoretical maximum, non-forest sites (tree cover < 25%) were primarily limited by cold mean temperatures, open-canopy forest sites (tree cover between 25% and 60%) were primarily limited by evaporative demand, and closed-canopy forests were not limited by any particular environmental factor. The detection of ELFs is necessary in order to fully understand the width of limitations that species experience within their geographic range. PMID:25692604

  17. Quantifying environmental limiting factors on tree cover using geospatial data.

    PubMed

    Greenberg, Jonathan A; Santos, Maria J; Dobrowski, Solomon Z; Vanderbilt, Vern C; Ustin, Susan L

    2015-01-01

    Environmental limiting factors (ELFs) are the thresholds that determine the maximum or minimum biological response for a given suite of environmental conditions. We asked the following questions: 1) Can we detect ELFs on percent tree cover across the eastern slopes of the Lake Tahoe Basin, NV? 2) How are the ELFs distributed spatially? 3) To what extent are unmeasured environmental factors limiting tree cover? ELFs are difficult to quantify as they require significant sample sizes. We addressed this by using geospatial data over a relatively large spatial extent, where the wall-to-wall sampling ensures the inclusion of rare data points which define the minimum or maximum response to environmental factors. We tested mean temperature, minimum temperature, potential evapotranspiration (PET) and PET minus precipitation (PET-P) as potential limiting factors on percent tree cover. We found that the study area showed system-wide limitations on tree cover, and each of the factors showed evidence of being limiting on tree cover. However, only 1.2% of the total area appeared to be limited by the four (4) environmental factors, suggesting other unmeasured factors are limiting much of the tree cover in the study area. Where sites were near their theoretical maximum, non-forest sites (tree cover < 25%) were primarily limited by cold mean temperatures, open-canopy forest sites (tree cover between 25% and 60%) were primarily limited by evaporative demand, and closed-canopy forests were not limited by any particular environmental factor. The detection of ELFs is necessary in order to fully understand the width of limitations that species experience within their geographic range. PMID:25692604

  18. Predictors of severity for postnatal cytomegalovirus infection in preterm infants and implications for treatment.

    PubMed

    Gunkel, Julia; Wolfs, Tom F W; de Vries, Linda S; Nijman, Joppe

    2014-11-01

    Postnatal cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection is common in neonates and is mostly acquired through infected breast milk from seropositive mothers. In this review, risk factors of postnatal CMV transmission and predictors of severity, preventive measures and treatment of symptomatic postnatal CMV infection in preterm infants are discussed. Several viral, transmission route and host factors have been associated with a higher risk of postnatal CMV transmission from mother to child. Severity predictors of symptomatic postnatal CMV infection may include extreme prematurity (gestational age <26 weeks), timing of postnatal infection as well as comorbidities. Further research in postnatally infected preterm infants at risk for severe symptoms is essential with respect to preventive measures involving the infected breast milk and antiviral treatment. PMID:25277116

  19. Postnatal origins of undernutrition.

    PubMed

    Prost, Marc-André

    2009-01-01

    Obesity and nutrition-related chronic disorders are fast rising in developing countries. But undernutrition--stunting, underweight, wasting and micronutrient deficiencies--still affect millions of preschool children in both rural and urban settings increasing the risks of morbidity and mortality, impairing cognitive development, reducing productivity and increasing the risk of chronic diseases in later life. In addition undernutrition has a transgenerational effect. Here I review the evidence for a synergistic effect of inadequate nutrition (breastfeeding, complementary feeding), infection, and inappropriate mother-child interactions on growth and nutritional deficiencies. Underlying socioeconomic, environmental and genetic factors are also explored. Finally some perspectives on how urbanization and globalization may affect the prevalence and distribution of undernutrition are discussed. Fighting child under-nutrition is still an urgent necessity and a moral imperative. PMID:19346769

  20. Integrated Impacts of environmental factors on the degradation of fumigants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, J.; Yates, S. R.

    2007-12-01

    Volatilization of fumigants has been concerned as one of air pollution sources. Fumigants are used to control nematodes and soil-born pathogens for a pre-plant treatment to increase the production of high-cash crops. One of technologies to reduce the volatilization of fumigants to atmosphere is to enhance the degradation of fumigants in soil. Fumigant degradation is affected by environmental factors such as moisture content, temperature, initial concentration of injected fumigants, and soil properties. However, effects of each factor on the degradation were limitedly characterized and integrated Impacts from environmental factors has not been described yet. Degradation of 1,3- dichloropropene (1,3-D) was investigated in various condition of temperatures (20-60 °C), moisture contents (0 ¡V 30 %) and initial concentrations (0.6 ¡V 60 mg/kg) with Arlington sandy loam soil. Abiotic and biotic degradation processes were distinguished using two sterilization methods with HgCl2 and autoclave and impacts of environmental factors were separately assessed for abiotic and biotic degradations. Initially, degradation rates (k) of cis and trans 1,3-D isomers were estimated by first-order kinetics and modified depending on impacts from environmental factors. Arrhenius equation and Walker¡¦s equation which were conventionally used to describe temperature and moisture effects on degradation were assessed for integrated impacts from environmental factors and logarithmical correlation was observed between initial concentrations of applied fumigants and degradation rates. Understanding integrated impacts of environmental factors on degradation will help to design more effective emission reduction schemes in various conditions and provide more practical parameters for modeling simulations.

  1. Epigenetic Effect of Environmental Factors on Autism Spectrum Disorders.

    PubMed

    Kubota, Takeo; Mochizuki, Kazuki

    2016-01-01

    Both environmental factors and genetic factors are involved in the pathogenesis of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). Epigenetics, an essential mechanism for gene regulation based on chemical modifications of DNA and histone proteins, is also involved in congenital ASDs. It was recently demonstrated that environmental factors, such as endocrine disrupting chemicals and mental stress in early life, can change epigenetic status and gene expression, and can cause ASDs. Moreover, environmentally induced epigenetic changes are not erased during gametogenesis and are transmitted to subsequent generations, leading to changes in behavior phenotypes. However, epigenetics has a reversible nature since it is based on the addition or removal of chemical residues, and thus the original epigenetic status may be restored. Indeed, several antidepressants and anticonvulsants used for mental disorders including ASDs restore the epigenetic state and gene expression. Therefore, further epigenetic understanding of ASDs is important for the development of new drugs that take advantages of epigenetic reversibility. PMID:27187441

  2. Tobacco and other environmental risk factors in rheumatoid arthritis.

    PubMed

    Ruiz-Esquide, Virginia; Sanmartí, Raimon

    2012-01-01

    Many environmental factors have been associated with an increased risk of developing Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), but so far smoking is the only environmental risk factor that has been extensively studied and widely accepted. Smoking is associated with an increased risk of developing seropositive RA (RF and/or ACPA). Recent studies show that tobacco smoking can influence disease phenotype, with the development of more aggressive disease and greater joint damage; but other studies show contradictory results. Recent data suggests that response to antirheumatic therapy in RA is worse in smokers. In this article we review different environmental factors that have been associated with an increased risk of developing RA, with a special interest in tobacco smoking. PMID:22609003

  3. Epigenetic Effect of Environmental Factors on Autism Spectrum Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Kubota, Takeo; Mochizuki, Kazuki

    2016-01-01

    Both environmental factors and genetic factors are involved in the pathogenesis of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). Epigenetics, an essential mechanism for gene regulation based on chemical modifications of DNA and histone proteins, is also involved in congenital ASDs. It was recently demonstrated that environmental factors, such as endocrine disrupting chemicals and mental stress in early life, can change epigenetic status and gene expression, and can cause ASDs. Moreover, environmentally induced epigenetic changes are not erased during gametogenesis and are transmitted to subsequent generations, leading to changes in behavior phenotypes. However, epigenetics has a reversible nature since it is based on the addition or removal of chemical residues, and thus the original epigenetic status may be restored. Indeed, several antidepressants and anticonvulsants used for mental disorders including ASDs restore the epigenetic state and gene expression. Therefore, further epigenetic understanding of ASDs is important for the development of new drugs that take advantages of epigenetic reversibility. PMID:27187441

  4. Oral Health Inequalities: Relationships between Environmental and Individual Factors.

    PubMed

    Gupta, E; Robinson, P G; Marya, C M; Baker, S R

    2015-10-01

    Recent research has emphasized the relationships between environmental and individual factors that may influence population oral health and lead to health inequalities. However, little is known about the effect of interactions between environmental and individual factors on inequalities in clinical (e.g., decayed teeth) and subjective oral health outcomes (e.g., oral health-related quality of life [OHQoL]). This cohort study aimed to explore the direct and mediated longitudinal interrelationships between key environmental and individual factors on clinical and subjective oral health outcomes in adults. Self-reported measures of OHQoL and individual (sense of coherence [SOC], social support, stress, oral health beliefs, dental behaviors, and subjective socioeconomic status [SES]) and environmental factors (SES and social network) were collected at baseline and 3-mo follow-up, together with a baseline clinical examination of 495 adult employees of an automobile parts manufacturer in India. Lagged structural equation modeling was guided by the adapted Wilson and Cleary/Brunner and Marmot model linking clinical, individual, and environmental variables to quality of life. The study provides tentative evidence that SES may influence levels of resources such as social support and SOC, which mediate stress and in turn may influence subjective oral health outcomes. Accordingly, the present findings and the adapted Wilson and Cleary/Brunner and Marmot model on which they are predicted provide support for the psychosocial pathway being key in the SES-oral health relationship. The pathways through which environmental factors interact with individual factors to impact subjective oral health outcomes identified here may bring opportunities for more targeted oral health promotion strategies. PMID:26130261

  5. Genetic and Environmental Factors in Complex Neurodevelopmental Disorders

    PubMed Central

    van Loo, K.M.J; Martens, G.J.M

    2007-01-01

    Complex neurodevelopmental disorders, such as schizophrenia, autism, attention deficit (hyperactivity) disorder, (manic) depressive illness and addiction, are thought to result from an interaction between genetic and environmental factors. Association studies on candidate genes and genome-wide linkage analyses have identified many susceptibility chromosomal regions and genes, but considerable efforts to replicate association have been surprisingly often disappointing. Here, we summarize the current knowledge of the genetic contribution to complex neurodevelopmental disorders, focusing on the findings from association and linkage studies. Furthermore, the contribution of the interaction of the genetic with environmental and epigenetic factors to the aetiology of complex neurodevelopmental disorders as well as suggestions for future research are discussed. PMID:19412416

  6. [Hazardous environmental factors causing renal damage in children].

    PubMed

    Xu, Zhi-Quan; Yi, Zhu-Wen

    2014-04-01

    Hazardous environmental factors invade the body through multiple routes, including ingestion, inhalation and absorption by contact with the skin and mucous membrane. They are from various sources and soil, water, air, building and decorative materials, foods and daily necessities are the main carriers. According to their physical and chemical properties and morphological characteristics, these hazardous factors are classified as metals, inorganic matter, organic matter, radioactive substances, biological toxins, viruses, bacteria, mycoplasmas, chlamydiae and parasites. They cause diseases through blood and urine and also have kidney susceptibility. This article suggests that pediatricians should fully understand the characteristics and seriousness of hazardous environmental factors that cause renal damage, and pay attention to the prevention and control of these factors so as to minimize renal damage in children. PMID:24750822

  7. The mosaic of autoimmunity: the role of environmental factors.

    PubMed

    de Carvalho, Jozelio Freire; Pereira, Rosa Maria Rodrigues; Shoenfeld, Yehuda

    2009-01-01

    The "mosaic of autoimmunity" describes the multifactorial origin and diversity of expression of autoimmune diseases in humans. The term implies that different combinations of the many factors that are involved in auto-immunity produce varying and unique clinical pictures in a wide spectrum of autoimmune diseases. Most of the factors involved in autoimmunity can be categorized into four groups: genetic, immune defects, hormonal and environmental factors. In this communication, only the environmental factors are reviewed such as: infectious agents (represented by Epstein-Barr virus and cytomegalovirus), vaccines as triggers of autoimmunity, smoking and its relationship with rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, thyroid disease, multiple sclerosis and inflammatory bowel diseases. Some aspects of stress as implicated in causing autoimmunity and the processes leading to autoimmunity are reviewed as well. PMID:19482664

  8. Gender differences in autoimmunity associated with exposure to environmental factors

    PubMed Central

    Pollard, K. Michael

    2011-01-01

    Autoimmunity is thought to result from a combination of genetics, environmental triggers, and stochastic events. Gender is also a significant risk factor with many diseases exhibiting a female bias. Although the role of environmental triggers, especially medications, in eliciting autoimmunity is well established less is known about the interplay between gender, the environment and autoimmunity. This review examines the contribution of gender in autoimmunity induced by selected chemical, physical and biological agents in humans and animal models. Epidemiological studies reveal that environmental factors can be associated with a gender bias in human autoimmunity. However many studies show that the increased risk of autoimmunity is often influenced by occupational exposure or other gender biased activities. Animal studies, although often prejudiced by the exclusive use of female animals, reveal that gender bias can be strain specific suggesting an interaction between sex chromosome complement and background genes. This observation has important implications because it argues that within a gender biased disease there may be individuals in which gender does not contribute to autoimmunity. Exposure to environmental factors, which encompasses everything around us, adds an additional layer of complexity. Understanding how the environment influences the relationship between sex chromosome complement and innate and adaptive immune responses will be essential in determining the role of gender in environmentally-induced autoimmunity. PMID:22137891

  9. Determining Factors of Environmental Education in Spanish Universities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Larrn, Manuel; Andrades, Javier

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: This study aims to analyze the main factors that might determine the extent to which Spanish organizational management educators use environmental stand-alone subjects to equip students with alternative views of business. To give a more qualitative study, this paper also provides a more detailed curriculum analysis from a double point of

  10. Genetic and environmental factors that affect gestation length

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic and environmental factors that might affect gestation length (GL) were investigated so that more accurate predictions of calving dates could be provided to dairy producers. Data from >8 million calvings from 1999 through 2005 for 5 dairy breeds were assembled from lactation, reproduction, an...

  11. Social and Environmental Factors Influencing In-Prison Drug Use

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Woodall, James

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: There is a strong political imperative to regard the prison as a key social setting for health promotion, but evidence indicates that drug misuse continues to be a significant issue for many prisoners. This paper aims to examine the social and environmental factors within the setting that influence individuals' drug taking.…

  12. Determining Factors of Environmental Education in Spanish Universities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Larrán, Manuel; Andrades, Javier

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: This study aims to analyze the main factors that might determine the extent to which Spanish organizational management educators use environmental stand-alone subjects to equip students with alternative views of business. To give a more qualitative study, this paper also provides a more detailed curriculum analysis from a double point of…

  13. Social and Environmental Factors Influencing In-Prison Drug Use

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Woodall, James

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: There is a strong political imperative to regard the prison as a key social setting for health promotion, but evidence indicates that drug misuse continues to be a significant issue for many prisoners. This paper aims to examine the social and environmental factors within the setting that influence individuals' drug taking.

  14. Control and the Aged: Environmental or Personality Factors.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tiffany, Phyllis G.; Dey, Kay

    Control over self, lifestyle, and environment is a major factor in how one ages. To investigate how age acts as an environmental force in affecting perceptions of control, 45 adults, aged 60-80, from western Kansas were administered the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS), the Tiffany Experienced Control Scales (ECS), the Minnesota…

  15. Familial Influences on Conduct Disorder Reflect 2 Genetic Factors and 1 Shared Environmental Factor

    PubMed Central

    Kendler, Kenneth S.; Aggen, Steven H.; Patrick, Christopher J.

    2013-01-01

    Context Prior studies suggest that antisocial behavior in childhood and adolescence reflects multiple symptomatic dimensions. However, to our knowledge, no prior study has evaluated the underlying nature of the etiologic influences contributing to conduct disorder (CD) symptoms as defined in the DSM. Objective To determine the structure of genetic and environmental risk factors for CD. Design Population-based twin registry. Setting Virginia. Participants Two thousand seven hundred sixty-nine members of male-male twin pairs from the Virginia Adult Twin Study of Psychiatric and Substance Use Disorders. Main Outcome Measure Retrospective self-reported symptoms of CD. Results The best-fitting multivariate twin model included 2 genetic factors, 1 shared environmental common factor, and 1 nonshared environmental common factor, along with criterion-specific genetic and nonshared environmental effects. The CD criteria with the strongest loadings on the 2 genetic factors were, respectively, those reflecting rule breaking (eg, playing hooky) and overt aggressive acts (eg, hurting people). The shared environ mental common factor had salient loadings on a distinct set of criteria reflecting covert delinquent acts (eg, stealing and hurting animals). Loadings on the single non-shared environmental common factor were more uniform and less selective. Scores on the 3 familial CD factors were differentially associated with a range of personality, psychopathology, and demographic factors. Conclusions From a genetic perspective, the DSM criteria for CD do not reflect a single dimension of liability. The familial risk to CD is composed of 2 discrete dimensions of genetic risk, reflecting rule breaking and overt aggression, and 1 dimension of shared environmental risk, reflecting covert delinquency. These 3 familial factors differ meaningfully in their association with a range of relevant validators. PMID:23117573

  16. Postnatal Development of Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) and Tyrosine Protein Kinase B (TrkB) Receptor Immunoreactivity in Multiple Brain Stem Respiratory-Related Nuclei of the Rat

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Qiuli; Wong-Riley, Margaret T.T.

    2013-01-01

    Previously, we found a transient imbalance between suppressed excitation and enhanced inhibition in the respiratory network of the rat around postnatal days (P) 12–13, a critical period when the hypoxic ventilatory response is at its weakest. The mechanism underlying the imbalance is poorly understood. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and its tyrosine protein kinase B (TrkB) receptors are known to potentiate glutamatergic and attenuate gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)ergic neurotransmission, and BDNF is essential for respiratory development. We hypothesized that the excitation-inhibition imbalance during the critical period stemmed from a reduced expression of BDNF and TrkB at that time within respiratory-related nuclei of the brain stem. An in-depth, semiquantitative immunohistochemical study was undertaken in seven respiratory-related brain stem nuclei and one nonrespiratory nucleus in P0–21 rats. The results indicate that the expressions of BDNF and TrkB: 1) in the pre-Bötzinger complex, nucleus ambiguus, commissural and ventrolateral subnuclei of solitary tract nucleus, and retrotrapezoid nucleus/parafacial respiratory group were significantly reduced at P12, but returned to P11 levels by P14; 2) in the lateral paragigantocellular nucleus and parapyramidal region were increased from P0 to P7, but were strikingly reduced at P10 and plateaued thereafter; and 3) in the nonrespiratory cuneate nucleus showed a gentle plateau throughout the first 3 post-natal weeks, with only a slight decline of BDNF expression after P11. Thus, the significant downregulation of both BDNF and TrkB in respiratory-related nuclei during the critical period may form the basis of, or at least contribute to, the inhibitory-excitatory imbalance within the respiratory network during this time. PMID:22678720

  17. [Environmental and genetic risk factors for endometrial carcinoma].

    PubMed

    Snchal, Claire; Cottereau, Edouard; de Pauw, Antoine; Elan, Camille; Dagousset, Isabelle; Fourchotte, Virginie; Gauthier-Villars, Marion; Lae, Marick; Stoppa-Lyonnet, Dominique; Buecher, Bruno

    2015-03-01

    In France, endometrial cancer is at the first rank of gynecological cancers for cancer incidence, before ovarian and cervical cancers. In fact, the number of incident cases has been estimated to 7275for the year 2012; the number of death due to endometrial cancer to 2025. This cancer is hormone-dependent and endogenous (reproductive factors) or exogenous (oral combined contraceptives, hormone replacement therapy) causes of exposition to estrogens are the major environmental risk factors for both types of endometrial cancers: type I or well-differentiated endometrioid adenocarcinomas; and type II including all other histological types: papillary serous adenocarcinomas, clear cell adenocarcinomas and carcinosarcomas, also known as malignant mixed Mullerian tumor, MMMT. Obesity, diabetes mellitus and adjuvant treatment of breast cancer with tamoxifen are also associated with an increased risk of endometrial cancer. Genetic factors may also be implicated in the pathogenesis of endometrial cancer either as "minor genetic factors" (susceptibility factors), which remain largely unknown and are responsible for the increased observed risk in relatives of women affected with endometrial cancer; or as major genetic factors responsible for hereditary forms and namely for Lynch syndrome whose genetic transmission is of autosomic dominant type. The appropriate recognition of Lynch syndrome is of critical importance because affected patients and their relatives should benefit from specific care. The aims of this review is to describe major environmental and genetic risk factors for endometrial cancer with specific attention to most recent advances in this field and to describe recommendations for care of at-risk women. PMID:25725922

  18. Environmental Health Factors and Sexually Dimorphic Differences in Behavioral Disruptions

    PubMed Central

    Rosenfeld, Cheryl S.; Trainor, Brian C.

    2015-01-01

    Mounting evidence suggests that environmental factors—in particular, those that we are exposed to during perinatal life—can dramatically shape the organism’s risk for later diseases, including neurobehavioral disorders. However, depending on the environmental insult, one sex may demonstrate greater vulnerability than the other sex. Herein, we focus on two well-defined extrinsic environmental factors that lead to sexually dimorphic behavioral differences in animal models and linkage in human epidemiological studies. These include maternal or psychosocial stress (such as social stress) and exposure to endocrine-disrupting compounds (such as one of the most prevalent, bisphenol A [BPA]). In general, the evidence suggests that early environmental exposures, such as BPA and stress, lead to more pronounced behavioral deficits in males than in females, whereas female neurobehavioral patterns are more vulnerable to later in life stress. These findings highlight the importance of considering sex differences and developmental timing when examining the effects of environmental factors on later neurobehavioral outcomes. PMID:25705580

  19. Linking genetic and environmental factors in amphibian disease risk.

    PubMed

    Savage, Anna E; Becker, Carlos G; Zamudio, Kelly R

    2015-07-01

    A central question in evolutionary biology is how interactions between organisms and the environment shape genetic differentiation. The pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) has caused variable population declines in the lowland leopard frog (Lithobates yavapaiensis); thus, disease has potentially shaped, or been shaped by, host genetic diversity. Environmental factors can also influence both amphibian immunity and Bd virulence, confounding our ability to assess the genetic effects on disease dynamics. Here, we used genetics, pathogen dynamics, and environmental data to characterize L. yavapaiensis populations, estimate migration, and determine relative contributions of genetic and environmental factors in predicting Bd dynamics. We found that the two uninfected populations belonged to a single genetic deme, whereas each infected population was genetically unique. We detected an outlier locus that deviated from neutral expectations and was significantly correlated with mortality within populations. Across populations, only environmental variables predicted infection intensity, whereas environment and genetics predicted infection prevalence, and genetic diversity alone predicted mortality. At one locality with geothermally elevated water temperatures, migration estimates revealed source-sink dynamics that have likely prevented local adaptation. We conclude that integrating genetic and environmental variation among populations provides a better understanding of Bd spatial epidemiology, generating more effective conservation management strategies for mitigating amphibian declines. PMID:26136822

  20. Linking genetic and environmental factors in amphibian disease risk

    PubMed Central

    Savage, Anna E; Becker, Carlos G; Zamudio, Kelly R

    2015-01-01

    A central question in evolutionary biology is how interactions between organisms and the environment shape genetic differentiation. The pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) has caused variable population declines in the lowland leopard frog (Lithobates yavapaiensis); thus, disease has potentially shaped, or been shaped by, host genetic diversity. Environmental factors can also influence both amphibian immunity and Bd virulence, confounding our ability to assess the genetic effects on disease dynamics. Here, we used genetics, pathogen dynamics, and environmental data to characterize L. yavapaiensis populations, estimate migration, and determine relative contributions of genetic and environmental factors in predicting Bd dynamics. We found that the two uninfected populations belonged to a single genetic deme, whereas each infected population was genetically unique. We detected an outlier locus that deviated from neutral expectations and was significantly correlated with mortality within populations. Across populations, only environmental variables predicted infection intensity, whereas environment and genetics predicted infection prevalence, and genetic diversity alone predicted mortality. At one locality with geothermally elevated water temperatures, migration estimates revealed source–sink dynamics that have likely prevented local adaptation. We conclude that integrating genetic and environmental variation among populations provides a better understanding of Bd spatial epidemiology, generating more effective conservation management strategies for mitigating amphibian declines. PMID:26136822

  1. Revealing tact within postnatal care.

    PubMed

    Smythe, Elizabeth; Payne, Deborah; Wilson, Sally; Paddy, Ann; Heard, Kate

    2014-02-01

    In this article, we explore the nature of good postnatal care through a hermeneutic unpacking of the notion of tact, drawing on the philosophical writings of Heidegger, Gadamer, and van Manen. The tactful encounters considered were from a hermeneutic research study within a small, rural birthing center in New Zealand. Insights drawn from the analysis were as follows: the openness of listening, watching and being attuned that builds a positive mode of engagement, recognizing that the distance the woman needs from her nurse/midwife is a call of tact, that tact is underpinned by a spirit of care, within tact there are moods and tact might require firmness, and that all of these factors come together to build trust. We conclude that the attunement of tact requires that the staff member has time to spend with a woman, enough energy to engage, and a spirit of care. Women know that tactful practice builds their confidence and affects their mothering experience. Tact cannot be assumed; it needs to be nurtured and sheltered. PMID:24448102

  2. Intestinal microbiota is a plastic factor responding to environmental changes.

    PubMed

    Candela, Marco; Biagi, Elena; Maccaferri, Simone; Turroni, Silvia; Brigidi, Patrizia

    2012-08-01

    Traditionally regarded as stable through the entire lifespan, the intestinal microbiota has now emerged as an extremely plastic entity, capable of being reconfigured in response to different environmental factors. In a mutualistic context, these microbiome fluctuations allow the host to rapidly adjust its metabolic and immunologic performances in response to environmental changes. Several circumstances can disturb this homeostatic equilibrium, inducing the intestinal microbiota to shift from a mutualistic configuration to a disease-associated profile. A mechanistic comprehension of the dynamics involved in this process is needed to deal more rationally with the role of the human intestinal microbiota in health and disease. PMID:22672911

  3. Environmental factors in the development of autism spectrum disorders.

    PubMed

    Sealey, L A; Hughes, B W; Sriskanda, A N; Guest, J R; Gibson, A D; Johnson-Williams, L; Pace, D G; Bagasra, O

    2016-03-01

    Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are highly heterogeneous developmental conditions characterized by deficits in social interaction, verbal and nonverbal communication, and obsessive/stereotyped patterns of behavior and repetitive movements. Social interaction impairments are the most characteristic deficits in ASD. There is also evidence of impoverished language and empathy, a profound inability to use standard nonverbal behaviors (eye contact, affective expression) to regulate social interactions with others, difficulties in showing empathy, failure to share enjoyment, interests and achievements with others, and a lack of social and emotional reciprocity. In developed countries, it is now reported that 1%-1.5% of children have ASD, and in the US 2015 CDC reports that approximately one in 45 children suffer from ASD. Despite the intense research focus on ASD in the last decade, the underlying etiology remains unknown. Genetic research involving twins and family studies strongly supports a significant contribution of environmental factors in addition to genetic factors in ASD etiology. A comprehensive literature search has implicated several environmental factors associated with the development of ASD. These include pesticides, phthalates, polychlorinated biphenyls, solvents, air pollutants, fragrances, glyphosate and heavy metals, especially aluminum used in vaccines as adjuvant. Importantly, the majority of these toxicants are some of the most common ingredients in cosmetics and herbicides to which almost all of us are regularly exposed to in the form of fragrances, face makeup, cologne, air fresheners, food flavors, detergents, insecticides and herbicides. In this review we describe various scientific data to show the role of environmental factors in ASD. PMID:26826339

  4. Nurse burnout: personal and environmental factors as predictors.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shanshan; Liu, Yanhui; Wang, Linlin

    2015-02-01

    The aim of this study is to investigate the level of burnout of clinical nurses and to examine the influence of personal and environmental factors on nurse burnout. A total of 717 full-time nurses from six hospitals in Tianjin, China, completed five questionnaires: a demographic questionnaire, the Maslach Burnout Inventory, the General Self-Efficacy Scale, the Practice Environment Scale of the Nursing Work Index and the Nurse Job Stressor Scale. The participants had moderate levels of emotional exhaustion (mean score 23.95 ± 11.11) and depersonalization (mean score 7.90 ± 6.58) and a high level of reduced personal accomplishment (mean score 27.51 ± 10.96). Both personal and environmental factors were correlated with nurse burnout; however, personal factors played bigger roles in predicting personal accomplishment, whereas environmental factors played bigger roles in predicting emotional exhaustion and depersonalization. In order to reduce nurse job burnout effectively, administrators should pay more attention to the improvement of nurses' self-efficacy and professional nursing practice environment and the reduction of stressors. PMID:24237882

  5. Environmental factors and primary prevention in type 1 diabetes

    PubMed Central

    Ilonen, Jorma; Vaarala, Outi; Åkerblom, Hans K.; Knip, Mikael

    2014-01-01

    The incidence of type 1 diabetes has been increasing rapidly among children in most European countries over the last decades. Despite of the known strong genetic component in the disease only environmental factors can explain such a rapid change. The increase in incidence has been most conspicuous in the youngest age group, which emphasizes the importance of infancy and early environmental exposures. Nutritional and infectious factors affecting the young child or even the mother during pregnancy have been implicated to be important in the pathogenesis. The identification of single factors has been extremely difficult as reflected by many controversial reports on their importance. This difficulty may also be due to the heterogeneity of the disease mechanisms. Multiple mechanisms in different pathways may ultimately be responsible for beta-cell destruction. In most cases the disease is probably caused by a complex interplay between multiple factors including distinct genetic polymorphisms and environmental effects. Exploration of these pathways is needed for the development of effective preventive measures. The implementation of primary prevention trials will ultimately prove the value of various concepts generated for the disease pathogenesis. PMID:20455416

  6. [Environmental factors in the etiopathology of inflammatory bowel syndrome].

    PubMed

    Kamińska, Barbara; Landowski, Piotr; Korzon, Maria

    2004-01-01

    Inflammatory bowel syndrome (IBS) mainly includes ulcerative colitis (UC) and Crohn's disease (CD). UC and CD are chronic and recurrent conditions, with a tendency to exacerbations and remissions. The incidence of diseases worldwide has increased over the last years. Although the etiology of inflammatory bowel syndrome has been studied intensively it still remains unclear. The development and persistence of inflammation is an effect of numerous factors: proinflammatory (aggressive), regulating bowel mucosa homeostasis and protective factors. Proinflammatory factors include intestinal bacteria, bile acids, digestive enzymes, lipopolysaccharides and peptidoglycans. Protective mechanisms are impermeability of mucosa barrier, presence of intestinal mucus, activity of secretive immunoglobulins, some prostaglandins and interleukins, glutamine, somatostatin, cortisol and short-chain fatty acids. Factors modifying intestinal mucosa homeostasis consist of genetically determined immunoregulators and activity of intestinal mucosa barrier and some environmental factors (diet, smoking, infections, stress, antibiotics and others). Environmental factors are jointly responsible for IBS occurrence in case of genetically determined dysregulation leading to proinflammatory cytokines overproduction or disturbances in synthesis of cytokines regulating intestinal mucosa homeostasis. PMID:15557701

  7. Effects of prenatal and postnatal depression, and maternal stroking, at the glucocorticoid receptor gene

    PubMed Central

    Murgatroyd, C; Quinn, J P; Sharp, H M; Pickles, A; Hill, J

    2015-01-01

    In animal models, prenatal and postnatal stress is associated with elevated hypothalamic–pituitary axis (HPA) reactivity mediated via altered glucocorticoid receptor (GR) gene expression. Postnatal tactile stimulation is associated with reduced HPA reactivity mediated via increased GR gene expression. In this first study in humans to examine the joint effects of prenatal and postnatal environmental exposures, we report that GR gene (NR3C1) 1-F promoter methylation in infants is elevated in the presence of increased maternal postnatal depression following low prenatal depression, and that this effect is reversed by self-reported stroking of the infants by their mothers over the first weeks of life. PMID:25942041

  8. Effects of prenatal and postnatal depression, and maternal stroking, at the glucocorticoid receptor gene.

    PubMed

    Murgatroyd, C; Quinn, J P; Sharp, H M; Pickles, A; Hill, J

    2015-01-01

    In animal models, prenatal and postnatal stress is associated with elevated hypothalamic-pituitary axis (HPA) reactivity mediated via altered glucocorticoid receptor (GR) gene expression. Postnatal tactile stimulation is associated with reduced HPA reactivity mediated via increased GR gene expression. In this first study in humans to examine the joint effects of prenatal and postnatal environmental exposures, we report that GR gene (NR3C1) 1-F promoter methylation in infants is elevated in the presence of increased maternal postnatal depression following low prenatal depression, and that this effect is reversed by self-reported stroking of the infants by their mothers over the first weeks of life. PMID:25942041

  9. Pleural Mesothelioma in New Caledonia: Associations with Environmental Risk Factors

    PubMed Central

    Baumann, Francine; Maurizot, Pierre; Mangeas, Morgan; Ambrosi, Jean-Paul; Douwes, Jeroen; Robineau, Bernard

    2011-01-01

    Background High incidences of malignant mesothelioma (MM) have been observed in New Caledonia. Previous work has shown an association between MM and soil containing serpentinite. Objectives We studied the spatial and temporal variation of MM and its association with environmental factors. Methods We investigated the 109 MM cases recorded in the Cancer Registry of New Caledonia between 1984 and 2008 and performed spatial, temporal, and space–time cluster analyses. We conducted an ecological analysis involving 100 tribes over a large area including those with the highest incidence rates. Associations with environmental factors were assessed using logistic and Poisson regression analyses. Results The highest incidence was observed in the Houaïlou area with a world age-standardized rate of 128.7 per 100,000 person-years [95% confidence interval (CI), 70.41–137.84]. A significant spatial cluster grouped 18 tribes (31 observed cases vs. 8 expected cases; p = 0.001), but no significant temporal clusters were identified. The ecological analyses identified serpentinite on roads as the greatest environmental risk factor (odds ratio = 495.0; 95% CI, 46.2–4679.7; multivariate incidence rate ratio = 13.0; 95% CI, 10.2–16.6). The risk increased with serpentinite surface, proximity to serpentinite quarries and distance to the peridotite massif. The association with serpentines was stronger than with amphiboles. Living on a slope and close to dense vegetation appeared protective. The use of whitewash, previously suggested to be a risk factor, was not associated with MM incidence. Conclusions Presence of serpentinite on roads is a major environmental risk factor for mesothelioma in New Caledonia. PMID:21193386

  10. Environmental vascular risk factors: new perspectives for stroke prevention.

    PubMed

    Bernal-Pacheco, Oscar; Román, Gustavo C

    2007-11-15

    Despite intensive evaluation of acute stroke patients, perhaps only half of the attributable stroke risk is usually identified. In addition to traditional and non-traditional vascular risk factors-including most recently homocysteine, inflammation, and alterations of coagulation-a number of environmental risk factors for stroke have been identified in the last decade. In this update we review the following: lower education and poor socioeconomic status (probable surrogates for exposure to traditional high-risk behaviors such as smoking, poor nutrition, lack of prenatal control, absence of preventive medical and dental care, and non-compliance of treatment of conditions such as hypertension); depression, stress and affective disorders; obstructive sleep apnea; passive smoking and environmental pollution; infections, in particular periodontal diseases that increase C-reactive protein (CRP); raised body mass index (obesity); exercise, and diet. The possible role of high-fructose corn syrup in the epidemic of obesity in the USA is reviewed. Protective diets include higher consumption of fish, olive oil, grains, fruits and vegetables (Mediterranean diet), as well as probiotic bacteria in yogurt and dairy products. Careful attention should be given to the patient's environment looking for modifiable factors. The effects of clean environmental air and water, adequate diet and appropriate nutrition, healthy teeth, exercise, and refreshing sleep in the prevention of stroke and cardiovascular disease appear to be quite compelling. Although some of these modifiable risk factors lack evidence-based information, judicious clinical sense should be used to counteract the potentially damaging effects of adverse environmental vascular risk factors. PMID:17655871

  11. An overview of environmental risk factors in systemic sclerosis.

    PubMed

    De Martinis, Massimo; Ciccarelli, Fedra; Sirufo, Maria Maddalena; Ginaldi, Lia

    2016-04-01

    Systemic sclerosis (SSc) is a connective tissue disease with a complex and multifactorial pathogenesis, characterized by excessive collagen deposition and vasculopathy, leading to skin fibrosis and involvement of internal organs. Regarding the aetiology of SSc, our current knowledge is still limited; however, as for other autoimmune syndromes, the disease is probably caused by both endogenous and exogenous factors. Among the exogenous factors, in the past decades, several environmental exposures, including occupational exposure to pollutants, chemicals and hand-arm vibrations as well as infections, silicone and use of drugs, have been suggested to play a role in the development of SSc. The following review analyzes the most recent literature to examine the relationship between environmental exposures and SSc. PMID:26610037

  12. Environmental factors altering thyroid function and their assessment.

    PubMed Central

    Barsano, C P

    1981-01-01

    Chronic ingestion of modest doses of dietary iodine, radiation, and polyhalogenated biphenyls (PCB's and PBB's) are environmental factors with known or suspected adverse effects on the human thyroid. Iodine consumption in the United States is approaching 1 mg daily for a large segment of the population. Data are reviewed which support the need for concern regarding the long-term adverse effects of dietary iodine on thyroid function, particularly in certain susceptible individuals. Environmental sources of radiation pose a significant risk of thyroid cancer and hypothyroidism under certain circumstances which may be intentional, inadvertent, or accidental. Exposure to polyhalogenated biphenyls during manufacture or as industrial pollutants are hazardous to man and to wildlife in moderate or large quantities and perhaps also in small amounts. The need to investigate the potential harm posed by these factors in the quantities commonly encountered is emphasized. PMID:6263611

  13. Environmental factors altering thyroid function and their assessment.

    PubMed

    Barsano, C P

    1981-04-01

    Chronic ingestion of modest doses of dietary iodine, radiation, and polyhalogenated biphenyls (PCB's and PBB's) are environmental factors with known or suspected adverse effects on the human thyroid. Iodine consumption in the United States is approaching 1 mg daily for a large segment of the population. Data are reviewed which support the need for concern regarding the long-term adverse effects of dietary iodine on thyroid function, particularly in certain susceptible individuals. Environmental sources of radiation pose a significant risk of thyroid cancer and hypothyroidism under certain circumstances which may be intentional, inadvertent, or accidental. Exposure to polyhalogenated biphenyls during manufacture or as industrial pollutants are hazardous to man and to wildlife in moderate or large quantities and perhaps also in small amounts. The need to investigate the potential harm posed by these factors in the quantities commonly encountered is emphasized. PMID:6263611

  14. Race and kidney disease: role of social and environmental factors.

    PubMed Central

    Nzerue, Chike M.; Demissochew, Haliu; Tucker, J. Kevin

    2002-01-01

    Numerous studies have documented the presence of racial disparities among Americans in health outcomes with respect to cardiovascular disease, infant mortality, cancer, and kidney disease. With regard to kidney diseases, these disparities are more dramatic. African, Hispanic, and Native Americans have the highest risks of end-stage renal disease (ESRD). The incidence of ESRD is four times higher in African Americans than in whites. Diseases causing chronic kidney failure, such as diabetes mellitus, hypertension, systemic lupus erythematosus, and human immunodeficiency virus-associated nephropathy, are particularly prevalent among African-American patients. In addition to the higher prevalence, the morbidity associated with kidney complications of these diseases appears worse in African-American patients. African Americans also have worse outcomes and a relatively reduced access to kidney transplantation--the best therapy for ESRD. It is highly likely that social and environmental factors play a very significant role in the persistence of these disparities. A detailed understanding of these socioeconomic and environmental factors will be critical in formulating rational public health strategies to redress these disparities. This paper reviews the social, economic and environmental factors that impact on the incidence of ESRD in minority groups. PMID:12152910

  15. Environmental risk factors and the developmental basis for Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Zawia, Nasser H; Basha, M Riyaz

    2005-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder whose clinical manifestations appear in old age. The hallmark pathological features of AD (amyloid plaques and associated proteins) are present in normal aging indivduals, suggesting that AD may result from the acceleration of normal age-related processes in the brain. The sporadic nature of most AD cases strongly argues for an environmental link that may drive AD pathogenesis; however, it is unclear when this environmental stress may occur. Therefore it is important to identify an environmental trigger(s) and to pinpoint the period during which such factors pose the greatest risk. Recently, we reported that developmental exposure of rats to the xenobiotic metal lead (Pb) resulted in a delayed overexpression (20 months later) of the amyloid precursor protein (APP) and its amyloidogenic Abeta product. Similarly, aged monkeys exposed to Pb as infants also responded in the same way. These data suggest that environmental influences occurring during brain development predetermine the expression and regulation of APP later in life, potentially influencing the course of amyloidogenesis, and argue for both an environmental trigger and a developmental origin of AD. In this review, we present evidence for the developmental basis of neurodegeneration and discuss mechanisms that may explain how perturbations during development can have long-term or delayed consequences in the aging brain. PMID:16519009

  16. Assessing an Environmental Attitude Development Model: Factors Influencing the Environmental Attitudes of College Students.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hess-Quimbita, Grace; Pavel, Michael

    A study investigated factors affecting the development of positive attitudes toward environmental issues among college students, focusing on the direct and indirect effects of student background characteristics, institutional characteristics, and college experience and outcomes variables. Data were drawn from the Cooperative Institutional Research…

  17. The insulin-like growth factors (IGF) and IGF type I receptor during postnatal growth of the murine mammary gland: sites of messenger ribonucleic acid expression and potential functions.

    PubMed

    Richert, M M; Wood, T L

    1999-01-01

    The goals of this study were to determine the cellular sites of insulin-like growth factor (IGF) and IGF type-I receptor (IGF-IR) expression and to begin to elucidate functional roles for the IGFs during postnatal development of the murine mammary gland. Using in situ hybridization analyses, we determined that IGF-I, IGF-II, and IGF-IR messenger RNAs were expressed in the highly proliferative terminal end buds during pubertal ductal growth. Consistent with these data, IGF-I (in combination with mammogenic hormones) promoted ductal growth in pubertal stage mammary glands cultured in vitro. During postpubertal and pregnancy stages, IGF-II and IGF-IR continued to be expressed in ductal epithelium. Expression of IGF-II in ductal and alveolar epithelium correlated with the pattern of rapidly proliferating cells, as determined by incorporation of 5-Bromo-2'-deoxyuridine, suggesting a potential autocrine or paracrine role for IGF-II as a mitogen for ductal epithelial cells. IGF-I expression was reinitiated in mammary epithelium in the differentiated alveoli at the end of pregnancy, suggesting an additional role for this factor in maintenance of the alveoli during lactation. Taken together, these data support an in vivo role for locally-produced IGFs in promoting ductal growth during puberty and suggest that IGF-I and IGF-II may have distinct functions during pregnancy-induced alveolar development. PMID:9886857

  18. Impacts of environmental factors on fine root lifespan

    PubMed Central

    McCormack, M. Luke; Guo, Dali

    2014-01-01

    The lifespan of fast-cycling roots is a critical parameter determining a large flux of plant carbon into soil through root turnover and is a biological feature regulating the capacity of a plant to capture soil water and nutrients via root-age-related physiological processes. While the importance of root lifespan to whole-plant and ecosystem processes is increasingly recognized, robust descriptions of this dynamic process and its response to changes in climatic and edaphic factors are lacking. Here we synthesize available information and propose testable hypotheses using conceptual models to describe how changes in temperature, water, nitrogen (N), and phosphorus (P) availability impact fine root lifespan within a species. Each model is based on intrinsic responses including root physiological activity and alteration of carbohydrate allocation at the whole-plant level as well as extrinsic factors including mycorrhizal fungi and pressure from pathogens, herbivores, and other microbes. Simplifying interactions among these factors, we propose three general principles describing fine root responses to complex environmental gradients. First, increases in a factor that strongly constrains plant growth (temperature, water, N, or P) should result in increased fine root lifespan. Second, increases in a factor that exceeds plant demand or tolerance should result in decreased lifespan. Third, as multiple factors interact fine root responses should be determined by the most dominant factor controlling plant growth. Moving forward, field experiments should determine which types of species (e.g., coarse vs. fine rooted, obligate vs. facultative mycotrophs) will express greater plasticity in response to environmental gradients while ecosystem models may begin to incorporate more detailed descriptions of root lifespan and turnover. Together these efforts will improve quantitative understanding of root dynamics and help to identify areas where future research should be focused. PMID:24904605

  19. The impact of environmental factors on traffic accidents in Iran

    PubMed Central

    Lankarani, Kamran B.; Heydari, Seyed Taghi; Aghabeigi, Mohammad Reza; Moafian, Ghasem; Hoseinzadeh, Amin; Vossoughi, Mehrdad

    2014-01-01

    Abstract: Background: Road traffic crashes are the third highest cause of mortality in Iran. The aim of this study was to determine the impact of roadway environmental factors on traffic crash. Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted in Iran between March 21, 2010 and December 30, 2010. The data on road traffic crashes were obtained from the Traffic Police Department records. These records were classified to control for the main confounders related to the type of crash and roadway environmental factors. Roadway environmental factors included crash scene light, weather, place of accident, the defects and geometrics of roadway and road surface. Results: The study included 542,863 traffic crashes. The proportions of road traffic crash which led to injury were 24.44% at sunrise and 27.16% at sunset compared with 5.43% and 1.43% deaths at sunrise and sunset respectively. In regard to day time accidents, the proportions were 20.50% injuries and 0.55% deaths. The statistical analysis of the results showed that the ratio of injuries and deaths were significantly higher at sunrise and sunset than those occurring during daytime (P less than 0.001). The highest rate of death (5.07%) was due to dusty weather compared to 5.07% for other weather conditions (P less than 0.001). The highest mortality rate (3.45%) occurred on oily surfaces (P less than 0.001). The defective traffic signs were responsible for 30,046 injuries and 5.58% deaths, and road narrowing accounted for 22,775 injuries and, 4.23% deaths which indicated that the roadway defects inflict most frequent injuries and deaths. The lowest (0.74 %) and highest (3.09%) proportion of traffic crash- related deaths were due to flat straight and winding uphill/downhill roads respectively (P less than 0.001). Conclusions: Sunrise, sunset, dusty weather, oily road surfaces and winding uphill/downhill road were hazardous environmental factors. This study provides an insight into the potential impacts of environmental factors on road traffic accidents and underlines the implementation of appropriate preventive measures. PMID:24121452

  20. Risk factors of obesity in a five year old population. Parental versus environmental factors.

    PubMed

    Locard, E; Mamelle, N; Billette, A; Miginiac, M; Munoz, F; Rey, S

    1992-10-01

    To be more effective, the prevention of obesity in childhood should be focused on the population at risk. The purpose of the present study is firstly to find correlations between certain environmental factors and obesity in childhood, and secondly to measure the influence of the environmental factors after taking the parental history of obesity into account. This case controlled study includes 704 controls vs. 327 cases selected in a population of five year old school children. The anthropometric assessment was completed at school. Obesity was defined as a weight for height > or = 2 s.d. using the French weight charts for French children based on sex and height. Interviews of the parents recorded parental overweight and child birth overweight as 'constitutional' factors and family structure, socio-economic level and daily lifestyle (sleep, TV viewing, after school care, etc.) as 'environmental' factors. The results show that parental overweight and birth overweight are closely related to the child's obesity at five years of age (estimated relative risks 3.1 and 2.4 respectively). The environmental factors which contribute to child obesity are: southern European origin of the mother, snacks, excessive television viewing and, more importantly, short sleep duration (estimated relative risks = 1.9, 1.3, 2.1 and 4.9 respectively). A logistic regression model, after taking parental overweight into account, shows that the relationship between obesity and short sleep duration persists independently of television viewing. The hypotheses raised by these findings are discussed. PMID:1330951

  1. Associations between environmental factors and incidence of cutaneous melanoma. Review

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Cutaneous melanoma is one of the most serious skin cancers. It is caused by neural crest-derived melanocytes - pigmented cells normally present in the epidermis and, sometimes, in the dermis. Methods We performed a review of current knowledge on the risk factors of cutaneous melanoma. Relevant studies were identified using the PubMed, Science Direct, Medline, Scopus, Scholar Google and ISI Web of Knowledge databases. Results Melanoma incurs a considerable public health burden owing to the worldwide dramatic rise in incidence since the mid-1960s. Ultraviolet radiation exposure is the predominant environmental risk factor. The role of geographical (latitude) and individual factors such as skin type, life style, vitamin D levels and antioxidant protection, sunburn, and exposure to other environmental factors possibly contributing to melanoma risk (such as cosmetics including sunscreen, photosensitising drugs, and exogenous hormones) are reviewed in this article. Recently, both rare high risk susceptibility genes and common polymorphic genes contributing to melanoma risk have been identified. Conclusions Cutaneous melanoma is a complex cancer with heterogeneous aetiology that continues to increase in incidence. Introduction of new biomarkers may help to elucidate the mechanism of pathogenesis and individual susceptibility to the disease, and make both prevention and treatment more effective. PMID:22759494

  2. Risk factors of allergic rhinitis: genetic or environmental?

    PubMed

    Wang, De-Yun

    2005-06-01

    Allergic diseases such as allergic rhinitis represent a global health problem, affecting 10%-25% of the world population. There is clear evidence to support the concept that allergic diseases are influenced by genetic predisposition and environmental exposure. Polymorphisms of candidate genes have been associated with clinical expression of these diseases. However, characterization of these susceptibility markers in discriminating an "allergic individual" from the general population has not yet been achieved, and the value of how this genetic insight leading to recognition of specific subtypes of these disorders still needs to be confirmed. Environmental factors (eg, air pollution and bacterial/viral infection) also play an important role in the development of the diseases. A number of epidemiologic studies have supported the "hygiene hypothesis", which is based on the observations that Th1 responses induced by microbial stimulation can counterbalance allergen-induced Th2 responses. Future studies are needed to identify the key genes or their haplotypes for atopic phenotypes and to investigate the interactions between genetic and environmental factors that influence the complex trait of allergic diseases. This will help us to further understand the etiology of the diseases and develop new avenues for genetically oriented diagnosis and more effective measures of prevention and intervention. PMID:18360551

  3. Methodologic approaches to studying environmental factors in childhood cancer.

    PubMed Central

    Grufferman, S

    1998-01-01

    Little is known about environmental causes of childhood cancer. This is probably due to the relative rarity of cancer in children. In the United States, cancer incidence in adults is over 20 times greater than cancer incidence in children. The situation is compounded by the fact that two groups of cancers, leukemias and brain and spinal tumors, account for half of all childhood cancers. The rarity of childhood cancer renders the conduct of most cohort studies infeasible. The majority of studies assessing potential environmental risk factors for childhood cancers have been case-control studies, which are highly efficient for studying rare diseases. Case-control studies of childhood cancers have been greatly facilitated by using cooperative clinical trial groups for case identification. The national studies that have emerged utilize random-digit telephone dialing and telephone interviewing as feasible and economic means of identifying and interviewing controls. Other approaches such as descriptive epidemiology, ecologic studies, and studies of cancer clusters have proven to be disappointing in elucidating environmental causes of childhood cancer. Descriptive and ecologic studies provide no information on specific exposures of study subjects; rather, they use population levels as surrogates for individual exposure. Studies of cancer clusters have also proven to be disappointing. Although there are numerous difficulties in conducting research on the causes of childhood cancer, these difficulties can be remedied by using carefully designed and conducted studies. It should be remembered that the epidemiologic approach is probably the most likely research venue for uncovering environmental causes of childhood cancer. PMID:9646052

  4. Risk Factors for Discontinuation of Exclusive Breastfeeding by One Month of Postnatal Age Among High Risk Newborns: An Institution Based Case Control Study

    PubMed Central

    Chandrika, Parul; Gathwala, Geeta; Narwal, Varun; Chaturvedi, Abhishek

    2015-01-01

    Background Beyond one month of age, there is generally a drop in the proportion of mothers providing exclusive breastfeeding to their infants. Infants with morbidities during neonatal period have been observed to be at higher risk of discontinuation. Objective To enumerate the prevalent factors behind discontinuation of breastfeeding among high risk newborns by first month of life. Materials and Methods A case control study conducted at high risk newborn followup clinic of a teaching medical institute in northern India between January and May 2013. Infants were divided on the basis of continuation (controls) or discontinuation (cases) of exclusive breastfeeding at one month of age. The socio-demographic factors along with maternal and neonatal medical factors were compared among groups. Results During the study period, 112 newborns were screened. Forty seven cases and thirty eight controls were enrolled and finally evaluated. Female gender of newborn, less educated mothers and large families were observed to be associated with discontinuation of exclusive breastfeeding during first month of life among high risk newborns. Requirement of parenteral fluids during hospital stay emerged as the only independent medical reason. Conclusion As in healthy newborns, the socio-cultural factors overshadow the medical reasons for discontinuation of exclusive breastfeeding during first month of life among high risk newborns. PMID:26266176

  5. Husband and wife with sarcoidosis: possible environmental factors involved

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Sarcoidosis is a granulomatous multisystem disorder of unclear etiology that involves any organ, most commonly the lung and the lymph nodes. It is hypothesized that the disease derives from the interaction between single or multiple environmental factors and genetically determined host factors. Multiple potential etiologic agents for sarcoidosis have been proposed without any definitive demonstration of causality. We report the case of two patients, husband (57 years old) and wife (55 years old), both suffering from sarcoidosis. They underwent a lymph node biopsy by mediastinoscopy which showed a “granulomatous epithelioid giant cell non-necrotising chronic lymphadenitis”. They had lived up to 3 years ago in the country in a farm, in contact with organic dusts, animals such as dogs, chickens, rabbits, pigeons; now they have lived since about 3 years in an urban area where there are numerous chemical industries and stone quarries. The aim of this case report was to focus on environmental factors that might be related to the pathogenesis of the sarcoidosis. PMID:23351275

  6. Prenatal immunotoxicant exposure and postnatal autoimmune disease.

    PubMed Central

    Holladay, S D

    1999-01-01

    Reports in humans and rodents indicate that immune development may be altered following perinatal exposure to immunotoxic compounds, including chemotherapeutics, corticosteroids, polycyclic hydrocarbons, and polyhalogenated hydrocarbons. Effects from such exposure may be more dramatic or persistent than following exposure during adult life. For example, prenatal exposure to the insecticide chlordane or to the polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon benzo[(italic)a(/italic)]pyrene produces what appears to be lifelong immunosuppression in mice. Whether prenatal immunotoxicant exposure may predispose the organism to postnatal autoimmune disease remains largely unknown. In this regard, the therapeutic immunosuppressant cyclosporin A (CsA) crosses the placenta poorly. However, lethally irradiated rodents exposed to CsA postsyngeneic bone marrow transplant (i.e., during re-establishment of the immune system) develop T-cell-mediated autoimmune disease, suggesting this drug may produce a fundamental disruption in development of self-tolerance by T cells. The environmental contaminant 2,3,7, 8-tetrachlorodibenzo-(italic)p(/italic)-dioxin (TCDD) crosses the placenta and produces fetal thymic effects (italic)in vivo(/italic) similar to effects of CsA in fetal thymic organ culture, including inhibited thymocyte maturation and reduced expression of thymic major histocompatability complex class II molecules. These observations led to the suggestion that gestational exposure to TCDD may interfere with normal development of self-tolerance. Possibly supporting this hypothesis, when mice predisposed to development of autoimmune disease were treated with TCDD during gestation, postnatal autoimmunity was exacerbated. Similar results have been reported for mice exposed to diethylstilbestrol during development. These reports suggest that prenatal exposure to certain immunotoxicants may play a role in postnatal expression of autoimmunity. PMID:10502532

  7. Maternal lifestyle and environmental risk factors for autism spectrum disorders

    PubMed Central

    Lyall, Kristen; Schmidt, Rebecca J; Hertz-Picciotto, Irva

    2014-01-01

    Background: Over the past 10 years, research into environmental risk factors for autism has grown dramatically, bringing evidence that an array of non-genetic factors acting during the prenatal period may influence neurodevelopment. Methods: This paper reviews the evidence on modifiable preconception and/or prenatal factors that have been associated, in some studies, with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), including nutrition, substance use and exposure to environmental agents. This review is restricted to human studies with at least 50 cases of ASD, having a valid comparison group, conducted within the past decade and focusing on maternal lifestyle or environmental chemicals. Results: Higher maternal intake of certain nutrients and supplements has been associated with reduction in ASD risk, with the strongest evidence for periconceptional folic acid supplements. Although many investigations have suggested no impact of maternal smoking and alcohol use on ASD, more rigorous exposure assessment is needed. A number of studies have demonstrated significant increases in ASD risk with estimated exposure to air pollution during the prenatal period, particularly for heavy metals and particulate matter. Little research has assessed other persistent and non-persistent organic pollutants in association with ASD specifically. Conclusions: More work is needed to examine fats, vitamins and other maternal nutrients, as well as endocrine-disrupting chemicals and pesticides, in association with ASD, given sound biological plausibility and evidence regarding other neurodevelopmental deficits. The field can be advanced by large-scale epidemiological studies, attention to critical aetiological windows and how these vary by exposure, and use of biomarkers and other means to understand underlying mechanisms. PMID:24518932

  8. Do Environmental Factors Modify the Genetic Risk of Prostate Cancer?

    PubMed Central

    Loeb, Stacy; Peskoe, Sarah B.; Joshu, Corinne E.; Huang, Wen-Yi; Hayes, Richard B.; Carter, H. Ballentine; Isaacs, William B.; Platz, Elizabeth A.

    2015-01-01

    Background Many SNPs influence prostate cancer risk. To what extent genetic risk can be reduced by environmental factors is unknown. Methods We evaluated effect modification by environmental factors of the association between susceptibility SNPs and prostate cancer in 1,230 incident prostate cancer cases and 1,361 controls, all white and similar ages, nested in the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal, and Ovarian (PLCO) Cancer Trial. Genetic risk scores were calculated as number of risk alleles for 20 validated SNPs. We estimated the association between higher genetic risk (≥ 12 SNPs) and prostate cancer within environmental factor strata and tested for interaction. Results Men with ≥12 risk alleles had 1.98, 2.04, and 1.91 times the odds of total, advanced, and nonadvanced prostate cancer, respectively. These associations were attenuated with the use of selenium supplements, aspirin, ibuprofen, and higher vegetable intake. For selenium, the attenuation was most striking for advanced prostate cancer: compared with <12 alleles and no selenium, the OR for ≥12 alleles was 2.06 [95% confidence interval (CI), 1.67–2.55] in nonusers and 0.99 (0.38–2.58) in users (Pinteraction = 0.031). Aspirin had the most marked attenuation for nonadvanced prostate cancer: compared with <12 alleles and nonusers, the OR for ≥12 alleles was 2.25 (1.69–3.00) in nonusers and 1.70 (1.25–2.32) in users (Pinteraction = 0.009). This pattern was similar for ibuprofen (Pinteraction = 0.023) and vegetables (Pinteraction = 0.010). Conclusions This study suggests that selenium supplements may reduce genetic risk of advanced prostate cancer, whereas aspirin, ibuprofen, and vegetables may reduce genetic risk of nonadvanced prostate cancer. PMID:25342390

  9. Genetic and environmental factors in the aetiology of hypospadias.

    PubMed

    George, Mathew; Schneuer, Francisco J; Jamieson, Sarra E; Holland, Andrew J A

    2015-06-01

    This article reviews the current evidence and knowledge of the aetiology of hypospadias. Hypospadias remains a fascinating anomaly of the male phallus. It may be an isolated occurrence or part of a syndrome or field defect. The increasing use of assisted reproductive techniques and hormonal manipulation during pregnancy may have been associated with an apparent rise in the incidence of hypospadias. Genetic studies and gene analysis have suggested some defects that could result in hypospadias. New light has also been thrown on environmental factors that could modulate candidate genes, causing altered development of the male external genitalia. PMID:25742936

  10. Environmental Factors Affecting the Transmission of Respiratory Viruses

    PubMed Central

    Pica, Natalie; Bouvier, Nicole M.

    2012-01-01

    Many viruses are capable of infecting the human respiratory tract to cause disease. These viruses display various transmission patterns among humans; however, they all share the ability to transmit from person to person, and their human transmissibility is influenced by the environment in which pathogen and host meet. This review aims to summarize recent and significant observations regarding the impact of environmental factors such as weather and climate, humidity, temperature, and airflow on the transmission of human respiratory viruses. Where possible, knowledge gaps that require further scientific study will be identified. PMID:22440971

  11. The influence of environmental factors on bone tissue engineering.

    PubMed

    Szpalski, Caroline; Sagebin, Fabio; Barbaro, Marissa; Warren, Stephen M

    2013-05-01

    Bone repair and regeneration are dynamic processes that involve a complex interplay between the substrate, local and systemic cells, and the milieu. Although each constituent plays an integral role in faithfully recreating the skeleton, investigators have long focused their efforts on scaffold materials and design, cytokine and hormone administration, and cell-based therapies. Only recently have the intangible aspects of the milieu received their due attention. In this review, we highlight the important influence of environmental factors on bone tissue engineering. PMID:23165885

  12. Postnatal effects of prenatal insult

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, E.M.; Newman, L.M.; Schmidt, R.R.

    1988-03-01

    Exogenous agents may perturb development during the embryonic period and adversely affect the formation of organs. However, adverse effects on development are not limited to the embryonic period nor are the manifestations restricted solely to outright gross structural malformation, but may instead be expressed as a decrement or abberration of postnatal function. Susceptibility to altered development may extend well into the postnatal period. Studies of functional parameters in several organ systems have demonstrated the broad-based susceptibility, subtlety of expression and potential of long-lasting effects of altered development assessed by physiologic assays. Adverse effects on functional development, whether in the CNS, reproductive, gastrointestinal, genitourinary, respiratory, or immune systems, etc., merit continuing investigation. From the viewpoint of risk estimation and hazard detection, evaluations of postnatal functional parameters may be relevant for several reasons. First, such parameters may serve as low-dose triggers. Second, they may be useful as a focal point for epidemiological studies. Finally, a more thorough understanding of the degree and magnitude of such postnatal functional deficits is needed since an adverse maternal effect may be transient, considered acceptable, or unperceived, but the effect on the conceptus may be permanent and severe. The immune and respiratory systems are discussed as two examples of how subtle and protean adverse effects on functional development may be.

  13. Major epigenetic development distinguishing neuronal and non-neuronal cells occurs postnatally in the murine hypothalamus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Prenatal and early postnatal environment can persistently alter one's risk of obesity. Environmental effects on hypothalamic developmental epigenetics constitute a likely mechanism underlying such 'developmental programming' of energy balance regulation. To advance our understanding of these process...

  14. Environmental factors controlling methane emissions from peatlands in northern Minnesota

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dise, Nancy B.; Gorham, Eville; Verry, Elon S.

    1993-01-01

    The environmental factors affecting the emission of methane from peatlands were investigated by correlating CH4 emission data for two years, obtained from five different peatland ecosystems in northern Minnesota, with peat temperature, water table position, and degree of peat humification. The relationship obtained between the CH4 flux and these factors was compared to results from a field manipulation experiment in which the water table was artificially raised in three experimental plots within the driest peatland. It was found that peat temperature, water table position, and degree of peat humification explained 91 percent of the variance in log CH4 flux, successfully predicted annual CH4 emission from individual wetlands, and predicted the change in flux due to the water table manipulation. Raising the water table in the bog corrals by an average of 6 cm in autumn 1989 and 10 cm in summer 1990 increased CH4 emission by 2.5 and 2.2 times, respectively.

  15. Depression in Men in the Postnatal Period and Later Child Psychology: A Population Cohort Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ramchandani, Paul G.; Stein, Alan; O'Connor, Thomas G.; Heron, Jon; Murray, Lynne; Evans, Jonathan

    2008-01-01

    The factors responsible for depression in men following childbirth and the association between their depression in the postnatal period and later psychiatric disorders in their children are assessed. Findings show that depression in fathers in their postnatal period is associated with later psychiatric disorders in their children, independent of…

  16. Impact of Environmental Factors on Legionella Populations in Drinking Water

    PubMed Central

    Schwake, David Otto; Alum, Absar; Abbaszadegan, Morteza

    2015-01-01

    To examine the impact of environmental factors on Legionella in drinking water distribution systems, the growth and survival of Legionella under various conditions was studied. When incubated in tap water at 4 °C, 25 °C, and 32 °C, L. pneumophila survival trends varied amongst the temperatures, with the stable populations maintained for months at 25 °C and 32 °C demonstrating that survival is possible at these temperatures for extended periods in oligotrophic conditions. After inoculating coupons of PVC, copper, brass, and cast iron, L. pneumophila colonized biofilms formed on each within days to a similar extent, with the exception of cast iron, which contained 1-log less Legionella after 90 days. L. pneumophila spiked in a model drinking water distribution system colonized the system within days. Chlorination of the system had a greater effect on biofilm-associated Legionella concentrations, with populations returning to pre-chlorination levels within six weeks. Biofilms sampled from drinking water meters collected from two areas within central Arizona were analyzed via PCR for the presence of Legionella. Occurrence in only one area indicates that environmental differences in water distribution systems may have an impact on the survival of Legionella. These results document the impact of different environmental conditions on the survival of Legionella in water. PMID:25996405

  17. Environmental factors that influence cyanobacteria and geosmin occurrence in reservoirs

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Journey, Celeste A.; Beaulieu, Karen M.; Bradley, Paul M.

    2013-01-01

    Phytoplankton are small to microscopic, free-floating algae that inhabit the open water of freshwater, estuarine, and saltwater systems. In freshwater lake and reservoirs systems, which are the focus of this chapter, phytoplankton communities commonly consist of assemblages of the major taxonomic groups, including green algae, diatoms, dinoflagellates, and cyanobacteria. Cyanobacteria are a diverse group of single-celled organisms that can exist in a wide range of environments, not just open water, because of their adaptability [1-3]. It is the adaptability of cyanobacteria that enables this group to dominate the phytoplankton community and even form nuisance or harmful blooms under certain environmental conditions [3-6]. In fact, cyanobacteria are predicted to adapt favorably to future climate change in freshwater systems compared to other phytoplankton groups because of their tolerance to rising temperatures, enhanced vertical thermal stratification of aquatic ecosystems, and alterations in seasonal and interannual weather patterns [7, 8]. Understanding those environmental conditions that favor cyanobacterial dominance and bloom formation has been the focus of research throughout the world because of the concomitant production and release of nuisance and toxic cyanobacterial-derived compounds [4-6, 7-10]. However, the complex interaction among the physical, chemical, and biological processes within lakes, reservoirs, and large rivers often makes it difficult to identify primary environmental factors that cause the production and release of these cyanobacterial by-products.

  18. Environmental factors that influence cyanobacteria and geosmin occurrence in reservoirs

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Journey, Celeste A.; Beaulieu, Karen M.; Bradley, Paul M.

    2013-01-01

    Phytoplankton are small to microscopic, free-floating algae that inhabit the open water of freshwater, estuarine, and saltwater systems. In freshwater lake and reservoirs systems, which are the focus of this chapter, phytoplankton communities commonly consist of assemblages of the major taxonomic groups, including green algae, diatoms, dinoflagellates, and cyanobacteria. Cyanobacteria are a diverse group of single-celled organisms that can exist in a wide range of environments, not just open water, because of their adaptability [1-3]. It is the adaptability of cyanobacteria that enables this group to dominate the phytoplankton community and even form nuisance or harmful blooms under certain environmental conditions [3-6]. In fact, cyanobacteria are predicted to adapt favorably to future climate change in freshwater systems compared to other phytoplankton groups because of their tolerance to rising temperatures, enhanced vertical thermal stratification of aquatic ecosystems, and alterations in seasonal and interannual weather patterns [7, 8]. Understanding those environmental conditions that favor cyanobacterial dominance and bloom formation has been the focus of research throughout the world because of the concomitant production and release of nuisance and toxic cyanobacterial-derived compounds [4-6, 7-10]. However, the complex interaction among the physical, chemical, and biological processes within lakes, reservoirs, and large rivers often makes it difficult to identify primary environmental factors that cause the production and release of these cyanobacterial by-products [9].

  19. Environmental factors that influence cyanobacteria and geosmin occurrence in reservoirs

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Journey, Celeste A.; Beaulieu, Karen M.; Bradley, Paul M.

    2013-01-01

    Phytoplankton are small to microscopic, free-floating algae that inhabit the open water of freshwater, estuarine, and saltwater systems. In freshwater lake and reservoirs systems, which are the focus of this chapter, phytoplankton communities commonly consist of assemblages of the major taxonomic groups, including green algae, diatoms, dinoflagellates, and cyanobacteria. Cyanobacteria are a diverse group of single-celled organisms that can exist in a wide range of environments, not just open water, because of their adaptability. It is the adaptability of cyanobacteria that enables this group to dominate the phytoplankton community and even form nuisance or harmful blooms under certain environmental conditions. In fact, cyanobacteria are predicted to adapt favorably to future climate change in freshwater systems compared to other phytoplankton groups because of their tolerance to rising temperatures, enhanced vertical thermal stratification of aquatic ecosystems, and alterations in seasonal and interannual weather patterns. Understanding those environmental conditions that favor cyanobacterial dominance and bloom formation has been the focus of research throughout the world because of the concomitant production and release of nuisance and toxic cyanobacterial-derived compounds. However, the complex interaction among the physical, chemical, and biological processes within lakes, reservoirs, and large rivers often makes it difficult to identify primary environmental factors that cause the production and release of these cyanobacterial by-products.

  20. Experimental and environmental factors affect spurious detection of ecological thresholds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Daily, Jonathan P.; Hitt, Nathaniel P.; Smith, David; Snyder, Craig D.

    2012-01-01

    Threshold detection methods are increasingly popular for assessing nonlinear responses to environmental change, but their statistical performance remains poorly understood. We simulated linear change in stream benthic macroinvertebrate communities and evaluated the performance of commonly used threshold detection methods based on model fitting (piecewise quantile regression [PQR]), data partitioning (nonparametric change point analysis [NCPA]), and a hybrid approach (significant zero crossings [SiZer]). We demonstrated that false detection of ecological thresholds (type I errors) and inferences on threshold locations are influenced by sample size, rate of linear change, and frequency of observations across the environmental gradient (i.e., sample-environment distribution, SED). However, the relative importance of these factors varied among statistical methods and between inference types. False detection rates were influenced primarily by user-selected parameters for PQR (τ) and SiZer (bandwidth) and secondarily by sample size (for PQR) and SED (for SiZer). In contrast, the location of reported thresholds was influenced primarily by SED. Bootstrapped confidence intervals for NCPA threshold locations revealed strong correspondence to SED. We conclude that the choice of statistical methods for threshold detection should be matched to experimental and environmental constraints to minimize false detection rates and avoid spurious inferences regarding threshold location.

  1. Environmental Factors Related to Multiple Sclerosis in Indian Population

    PubMed Central

    D’Cunha, Anita; Mustafa, Sharik

    2015-01-01

    Background Multiple sclerosis (MS) is less prevalent among Indians when compared to white populations. Genetic susceptibility remaining the same it is possible that environmental associations may have a role in determining disease prevalence. Aims To determine whether childhood infections, vaccination status, past infection with Helicobacter pylori (H.pylori), diet, socioeconomic and educational status were associated with MS. Material and Methods 139 patients and 278 matched control subjects were selected. A validated environmental exposure questionnaire was administered. Estimation of serum H.pylori IgG antibody was done by ELISA. Patients and controls were genotyped for HLA-DRB1*15:01. Results In our cohort a significant association was seen with measles (p <0.007), vegetarian diet (p < 0.001, higher educational status (p <0.0001) and urban living (p <0.0001). An inverse relationship was seen with H.Pylori infection and MS (p <0.001). Measles infection (OR 6.479, CI 1.21- 34.668, p< 0.029) and high educational status (OR 3.088, CI 1.212- 7.872, p< 0.018) were significant risk factors associated with MS. H.pylori infection was inversely related to MS (OR 0. 319, CI 0.144- 0.706, p <0.005). Conclusions Environmental influences may be important in determining MS prevalence. PMID:25902359

  2. Impact of environmental factors on legionella populations in drinking water.

    PubMed

    Schwake, David Otto; Alum, Absar; Abbaszadegan, Morteza

    2015-01-01

    To examine the impact of environmental factors on Legionella in drinking water distribution systems, the growth and survival of Legionella under various conditions was studied. When incubated in tap water at 4 °C, 25 °C, and 32 °C, L. pneumophila survival trends varied amongst the temperatures, with the stable populations maintained for months at 25 °C and 32 °C demonstrating that survival is possible at these temperatures for extended periods in oligotrophic conditions. After inoculating coupons of PVC, copper, brass, and cast iron, L. pneumophila colonized biofilms formed on each within days to a similar extent, with the exception of cast iron, which contained 1-log less Legionella after 90 days. L. pneumophila spiked in a model drinking water distribution system colonized the system within days. Chlorination of the system had a greater effect on biofilm-associated Legionella concentrations, with populations returning to pre-chlorination levels within six weeks. Biofilms sampled from drinking water meters collected from two areas within central Arizona were analyzed via PCR for the presence of Legionella. Occurrence in only one area indicates that environmental differences in water distribution systems may have an impact on the survival of Legionella. These results document the impact of different environmental conditions on the survival of Legionella in water. PMID:25996405

  3. ASTHMA, ENVIRONMENTAL RISK FACTORS, AND HYPERTENSION AMONG ARAB AMERICANS IN THE METRO DETROIT AREA

    EPA Science Inventory

    The importance of environmental risk factors in asthma etiology has been well-documented, and certain environmental risk factors have also been associated with hypertension. However, few previous studies have examined the relationship between hypertension and asthma. This study...

  4. Estimating Cyanobacteria Community Dynamics and its Relationship with Environmental Factors

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Wenhuai; Chen, Huirong; Lei, Anping; Lu, Jun; Hu, Zhangli

    2014-01-01

    The cyanobacteria community dynamics in two eutrophic freshwater bodies (Tiegang Reservoir and Shiyan Reservoir) was studied with both a traditional microscopic counting method and a PCR-DGGE genotyping method. Results showed that cyanobacterium Phormidium tenue was the predominant species; twenty-six cyanobacteria species were identified in water samples collected from the two reservoirs, among which fourteen were identified with the morphological method and sixteen with the PCR-DGGE method. The cyanobacteria community composition analysis showed a seasonal fluctuation from July to December. The cyanobacteria population peaked in August in both reservoirs, with cell abundances of 3.78 × 108 cells L-1 and 1.92 × 108 cells L-1 in the Tiegang and Shiyan reservoirs, respectively. Canonical Correspondence Analysis (CCA) was applied to further investigate the correlation between cyanobacteria community dynamics and environmental factors. The result indicated that the cyanobacteria community dynamics was mostly correlated with pH, temperature and total nitrogen. This study demonstrated that data obtained from PCR-DGGE combined with a traditional morphological method could reflect cyanobacteria community dynamics and its correlation with environmental factors in eutrophic freshwater bodies. PMID:24448632

  5. Environmental risk factors in the incidence of Johne's disease.

    PubMed

    Elliott, Geoffrey N; Hough, Rupert L; Avery, Lisa M; Maltin, Charlotte A; Campbell, Colin D

    2015-11-01

    This review addresses the survival and persistence of Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis (MAP), the causative pathogen of Johne's disease (JD), once it has left its ruminant host. JD has significant economic impact on dairy, beef and sheep industries and is difficult to control due to the long-term sub-clinical nature of the infection, intermittent or persistent MAP shedding during and after this period, inadequate test effectiveness, and the potential for MAP to exist for extended periods outside the host. The role that environmental factors play in the persistence and spread of MAP and consequent disease is assessed. Published risk factor analysis, organism survival across various environmental media and conditions, presence and spread in ruminant and non-ruminant wildlife, and the general potential for survival and multiplication of MAP ex-host both on and off-farm are discussed and knowledge gaps highlighted. An inclusive approach to disease management that takes into account the persistence and transport of the causative organism in on-farm soils and waters, land use and management, dispersal by domestic and non-domestic host species, as well as general animal husbandry is required on those farms where more traditional approaches to disease management have failed to reduce disease prevalence. PMID:24670062

  6. Methylmercury: A Potential Environmental Risk Factor Contributing to Epileptogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Yuan, Yukun

    2011-01-01

    Epilepsy or seizure disorder is one of the most common neurological diseases in humans. Although genetic mutations in ion channels and receptors and some other risk factors such as brain injury are linked to epileptogenesis, the underlying cause for the majority of epilepsy cases remains unknown. Gene-environment interactions are thought to play a critical role in the etiology of epilepsy. Exposure to environmental chemicals is an important risk factor. Methylmercury (MeHg) is a prominent environmental neurotoxicant, which targets primarily the central nervous system (CNS). Patients or animals with acute or chronic MeHg poisoning often display epileptic seizures or show increased susceptibility to seizures, suggesting that MeHg exposure may be associated with epileptogenesis. This mini-review highlights the effects of MeHg exposure, especially developmental exposure, on the susceptibility of humans and animals to seizures, and discusses the potential role of low level MeHg exposure in epileptogenesis. This review also proposes that a preferential effect of MeHg on the inhibitory GABAergic system, leading to disinhibition of excitatory glutamatergic function, may be one of the potential mechanisms underlying MeHg-induced changes in seizure susceptibility. PMID:22206970

  7. Ambient Environmental risk factors for childhood wheezing illness.

    PubMed

    Tsabouri, Sophia; Bleta, Anastasia G; Nastos, Panagiotis T; Priftis, Kostas N

    2015-01-01

    It is a great consensus in the scientific community that environmental factors, such as weather conditions and ambient air pollution, have vital impacts on respiratory diseases. Further, these factors imply the potential to have many significant impacts on aeroallergens, and therefore related diseases such as asthma and allergic rhinitis. The impacts are more pronounced in sensitive groups of population, such as children and elderly, living in urbanized areas. Over the last three decades, studies have shown changes in production, dispersion and allergen content of pollen and spores, which may be region- and species-specific. In addition, these changes may have been influenced by air pollutants interacting directly with pollen. It is not easy to evaluate the impact of climate change and air pollution on the prevalence of asthma in general and on the timing of asthma exacerbations. However, the global rise in asthma prevalence and severity suggests that air pollution and climate changes could be contributing. The objective of this review is to summarize the environmental impacts on pulmonary diseases in children based on recent literature over the world. PMID:25961424

  8. Allergic Asthma: Influence of Genetic and Environmental Factors*

    PubMed Central

    Mukherjee, Anil B.; Zhang, Zhongjian

    2011-01-01

    Allergic asthma is a chronic airway inflammatory disease in which exposure to allergens causes intermittent attacks of breathlessness, airway hyper-reactivity, wheezing, and coughing. Allergic asthma has been called a “syndrome” resulting from a complex interplay between genetic and environmental factors. Worldwide, >300 million individuals are affected by this disease, and in the United States alone, it is estimated that >35 million people, mostly children, suffer from asthma. Although animal models, linkage analyses, and genome-wide association studies have identified numerous candidate genes, a solid definition of allergic asthma has not yet emerged; however, such studies have contributed to our understanding of the multiple pathways to this syndrome. In contrast with animal models, in which T-helper 2 (TH2) cell response is the dominant feature, in human asthma, an initial exposure to allergen results in TH2 cell-dependent stimulation of the immune response that mediates the production of IgE and cytokines. Re-exposure to allergen then activates mast cells, which release mediators such as histamines and leukotrienes that recruit other cells, including TH2 cells, which mediate the inflammatory response in the lungs. In this minireview, we discuss the current understanding of how associated genetic and environmental factors increase the complexity of allergic asthma and the challenges allergic asthma poses for the development of novel approaches to effective treatment and prevention. PMID:21799018

  9. Environmental risk factors for inflammatory bowel diseases: a review.

    PubMed

    Ananthakrishnan, Ashwin N

    2015-02-01

    Inflammatory bowel diseases comprising Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC) are chronic immunologically mediated diseases. The key mechanism underlying the pathogenesis of these diseases is a dysregulated immune response to commensal flora in a genetically susceptible host. Thus intestinal microbial dysbiosis, host genetics, and the external environment all play an important role in the development of incident disease and in determining subsequent disease behavior and outcomes. There are several well-defined or putative environmental risk factors including cigarette smoking, appendectomy, diet, stress and depression, vitamin D as well as hormonal influence. The effect of some of the risk factors appears to differ between CD and UC suggesting that despite shared genetic and immunologic mechanisms, distinct pathways of pathogenesis exist. There is a growing body of literature identifying risk factors for incident disease. There is less rigorous literature defining triggers of relapse, and few controlled clinical trials examining if modification of such risk factors results in an improvement in patient outcomes. This is an area of considerable patient, physician, and scientific interest, and there is an important unmet need for rigorous studies of the external environment in disease pathogenesis and subsequent course. PMID:25204669

  10. Environmental and lifestyle risk factors of gastric cancer.

    PubMed

    Lee, Yeong Yeh; Derakhshan, Mohammad H

    2013-06-01

    Effective prevention and early diagnostic strategies are the most important public health interventions in gastric cancer, which remains a common malignancy worldwide. Preventive strategies require identification and understanding of environmental risk factors that lead to carcinogenesis. Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) is the primary carcinogen as this ancient bacterium has a complex ability to interact with its human host. Smoking and salt are strong independent risk factors for gastric cancer whereas alcohol is only a risk when it is heavily consumed. Red meat and high fat increase the risk of gastric cancer however fresh fruits, vegetables (allium family) and certain micronutrients (selenium, vitamin C) reduce the risk, with evidence lacking for fish, coffee and tea. Foods that inhibit H. pylori viability, colonization and infection may reduce cancer risk. Obesity is increasingly recognized as a contributory factor in gastric cardia carcinogenesis. Therefore, modest daily physical activities can be protective against cancer. Foundry workers are at risk for developing gastric cancer with dust iron being an important cause. Other risk factors include Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), possibly JC virus and radiation but the effects of these are likely to remain small. PMID:23725070

  11. Environmental Risk Factors for Inflammatory Bowel Diseases: A Review

    PubMed Central

    Ananthakrishnan, Ashwin N

    2014-01-01

    Inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) comprising Crohn’s disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC) are chronic immunologically mediated diseases. The key mechanism underlying the pathogenesis of these diseases is a dysregulated immune response to commensal flora in a genetically susceptible host. Thus intestinal microbial dysbiosis, host genetics, and the external environment all play an important role in the development of incident disease and in determining subsequent disease behavior and outcomes. There are several well-defined or putative environmental risk factors including cigarette smoking, appendectomy, diet, stress and depression, vitamin D as well as hormonal influence. The effect of some of the risk factors appears to differ between CD and UC suggesting that despite shared genetic and immunologic mechanisms, distinct pathways of pathogenesis exist. There is a growing body of literature identifying risk factors for incident disease. There is less rigorous literature defining triggers of relapse, and few controlled clinical trials examining if modification of such risk factors results in an improvement in patient outcomes. This is an area of considerable patient, physician, and scientific interest, and there is an important unmet need for rigorous studies of the external environment in disease pathogenesis and subsequent course. PMID:25204669

  12. Expression of the CTCFL Gene during Mouse Embryogenesis Causes Growth Retardation, Postnatal Lethality, and Dysregulation of the Transforming Growth Factor β Pathway.

    PubMed

    Sati, Leyla; Zeiss, Caroline; Yekkala, Krishna; Demir, Ramazan; McGrath, James

    2015-10-01

    CTCFL, a paralog of CTCF, also known as BORIS (brother of regulator of imprinted sites), is a testis-expressed gene whose function is largely unknown. Its product is a cancer testis antigen (CTA), and it is often expressed in tumor cells and also seen in two benign human vascular malformations, juvenile angiofibromas and infantile hemangiomas. To understand the function of Ctcfl, we created tetracycline-inducible Ctcfl transgenic mice. We show that Ctcfl expression during embryogenesis results in growth retardation, eye malformations, multiorgan pathologies, vascular defects, and neonatal death. This phenotype resembles prior mouse models that perturb the transforming growth factor β (TGFB) pathway. Embryonic stem (ES) cells with the Ctcfl transgene reproduce the phenotype in ES cell-tetraploid chimeras. Transcriptome sequencing of the Ctcfl ES cells revealed 14 genes deregulated by Ctcfl expression. Bioinformatic analysis revealed the TGFB pathway as most affected by embryonic Ctcfl expression. Understanding the consequence of Ctcfl expression in nontesticular cells and elucidating downstream targets of Ctcfl could explain the role of its product as a CTA and its involvement in two, if not more, human vascular malformations. PMID:26169830

  13. Expression of the CTCFL Gene during Mouse Embryogenesis Causes Growth Retardation, Postnatal Lethality, and Dysregulation of the Transforming Growth Factor β Pathway

    PubMed Central

    Sati, Leyla; Zeiss, Caroline; Yekkala, Krishna; Demir, Ramazan

    2015-01-01

    CTCFL, a paralog of CTCF, also known as BORIS (brother of regulator of imprinted sites), is a testis-expressed gene whose function is largely unknown. Its product is a cancer testis antigen (CTA), and it is often expressed in tumor cells and also seen in two benign human vascular malformations, juvenile angiofibromas and infantile hemangiomas. To understand the function of Ctcfl, we created tetracycline-inducible Ctcfl transgenic mice. We show that Ctcfl expression during embryogenesis results in growth retardation, eye malformations, multiorgan pathologies, vascular defects, and neonatal death. This phenotype resembles prior mouse models that perturb the transforming growth factor β (TGFB) pathway. Embryonic stem (ES) cells with the Ctcfl transgene reproduce the phenotype in ES cell-tetraploid chimeras. Transcriptome sequencing of the Ctcfl ES cells revealed 14 genes deregulated by Ctcfl expression. Bioinformatic analysis revealed the TGFB pathway as most affected by embryonic Ctcfl expression. Understanding the consequence of Ctcfl expression in nontesticular cells and elucidating downstream targets of Ctcfl could explain the role of its product as a CTA and its involvement in two, if not more, human vascular malformations. PMID:26169830

  14. Peer support for mothers with postnatal depression: A pilot study.

    PubMed

    Cust, Fiona

    2016-01-01

    As the number of mothers suttering from postnatal depression (PND) continues to rise, a pilot study was developed to explore methods of trying to support new mothers diagnosed as 'at risk' of PND. A lack of social interaction and isolation has been highlighted as a potential factor within postnatal depression. Could, therefore, disclosing to a fellow mother--who has previously shared a similar journey--help to assist in the recovery from this debilitating illness? A small number of peer support workers (PSWs) were recruited to offer one-to-one home visits within the postnatal period to a mother considered to be at elevated risk of PND--as diagnosed by the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS). The PSWs visited the mother within their own homes from week six postnatally for a period of six weeks. Results were recorded both quantitatively and qualitatively by the recording of the EPDS scores, log book entries and one-to-one interviews. Results suggest that the PSWs may have a positive effect upon the mothers'mental health, outlook and indeed, their relationship with their baby. PMID:26911102

  15. Influences of Environmental Factors on Leaf Morphology of Chinese Jujubes

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xiaopeng; Li, Yupeng; Zhang, Zhong; Li, Xingang

    2015-01-01

    Rainfall and temperature are the primary limiting factors for optimum quality and yield of cultivated jujube (Ziziphus jujuba Mill.). Adaptation to arid and cool environments has been and remains an important goal of many jujube improvement programs. This study summarized the survey results of 116 Chinese jujube varieties grown at 33 sites in China. The objective was to identify the environmental factors that influence leaf morphology, and the implications for breeding and introduction of new jujube varieties. Jujube leaf morphological traits were evaluated for their potential relationships with mean annual temperature (MAT) and mean annual precipitation (MAP). The results showed that many leaf morphological traits had a strong linear relationship with local precipitation and temperature. Longer veins per unit area (VLA) and reduced leaf area and leaf perimeter were typical of arid areas. VLA was inversely related to MAT and MAP at the centers of origin of jujube. There was a positive relationship between leaf shape (perimeter2/area) and both MAT and MAP. These results indicated that leaf vein traits of Chinese jujubes might have resulted from their adaptation to environmental factors in the course of long-term evolution. Principal component analysis allocated the 116 jujube varieties to three different groups, differentiated on the basis of morphological and physiological leaf characteristics. Jujube varieties from the Hebei, Shandong, Henan, southern Shanxi and central Shaanxi provinces were closely related, as were varieties from northwest Shanxi and northeast Shaanxi provinces, and varieties from the Gansu and Ningxia provinces. These close relationships were partially attributed to the frequent exchanges of varieties within each group. Leaf venation characteristics might be used as reference indices for jujube variety introduction between different locations. PMID:26020971

  16. Effect of Environmental Factors on Sulfur Gas Emissions from Drywall

    SciTech Connect

    Maddalena, Randy

    2011-08-20

    Problem drywall installed in U.S. homes is suspected of being a source of odorous and potentially corrosive indoor pollutants. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission's (CPSC) investigation of problem drywall incorporates three parallel tracks: (1) evaluating the relationship between the drywall and reported health symptoms; (2) evaluating the relationship between the drywall and electrical and fire safety issues in affected homes; and (3) tracing the origin and the distribution of the drywall. To assess the potential impact on human health and to support testing for electrical and fire safety, the CPSC has initiated a series of laboratory tests that provide elemental characterization of drywall, characterization of chemical emissions, and in-home air sampling. The chemical emission testing was conducted at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL). The LBNL study consisted of two phases. In Phase 1 of this study, LBNL tested thirty drywall samples provided by CPSC and reported standard emission factors for volatile organic compounds (VOCs), aldehydes, reactive sulfur gases (RSGs) and volatile sulfur compounds (VSCs). The standard emission factors were determined using small (10.75 liter) dynamic test chambers housed in a constant temperature environmental chamber. The tests were all run at 25 C, 50% relative humidity (RH) and with an area-specific ventilation rate of {approx}1.5 cubic meters per square meter of emitting surface per hour [m{sup 3}/m{sup 2}/h]. The thirty samples that were tested in Phase 1 included seventeen that were manufactured in China in 2005, 2006 and 2009, and thirteen that were manufactured in North America in 2009. The measured emission factors for VOCs and aldehydes were generally low and did not differ significantly between the Chinese and North American drywall. Eight of the samples tested had elevated emissions of volatile sulfur-containing compounds with total RSG emission factors between 32 and 258 micrograms per square meter per hour [{micro}g/m{sup 2}/h]. The dominant sulfur containing compounds in the RSG emission stream were hydrogen sulfide with emission factors between 17-201 {micro}g/m{sup 2}/h, and sulfur dioxide with emission factors between 8-64 {micro}g/m{sup 2}/h. The four highest emitting samples also had a unique signature of VSC emissions including > 40 higher molecular weight sulfur-containing compounds although the emission rate for the VSCs was several orders of magnitude lower than that of the RSGs. All of the high emitting drywall samples were manufactured in China in 2005-2006. Results from Phase 1 provided baseline emission factors for drywall samples manufactured in China and in North America but the results exclude variations in environmental conditions that may exist in homes or other built structures, including various combinations of temperature, RH, ventilation rate and the influence of coatings such as texture and paints. The objective of Phase 2 was to quantify the effect of temperature and RH on the RSG emission factors for uncoated drywall, and to measure the effect of plaster and paint coatings on RSG emission factors from drywall. Additional experiments were also performed to assess the influence of ventilation rate on measured emission factors for drywall.

  17. In ovo administration of recombinant human insulin-like growth factor-I alters postnatal growth and development of the broiler chicken.

    PubMed

    Kocamis, H; Kirkpatrick-Keller, D C; Klandorf, H; Killefer, J

    1998-12-01

    Two experiments assessed the efficacy of in ovo administration of insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I) to enhance skeletal muscle development and improve feed efficiency of broilers. Hatching eggs were divided into three groups: uninjected control, vehicle-injected control, and recombinant human (rh) IGF-I (100 ng per embryo). Eggs in Experiment 1 were injected on Day 1, 4, or one of Day 7 through 18 of incubation. Growth rates for Days 1 and 4 resulted in the greatest response to treatment (P < 0.01, P < 0.06 respectively). Based on these results, Experiment 2 focused on Days 1 to 4 of incubation. Results from Experiment 2 showed that there was no significant difference in hatchability among control and rh IGF-I treatment groups. Injection on Day 3 resulted in the greatest response for increased live (P < 0.035) and leg (P < 0.02) weights in both sexes. Feed efficiencies of all rh IGF-I groups were significantly (P < 0.01) improved for the first 3 wk. In ovo administration of rh IGF-I on Day 3 increased feed efficiency (6.65%; P < 0.009) in pens of mixed-sex broilers. In addition, live weights (12.3%; P < 0.002), leg weights (11.7%; P < 0.01), breast weights (9.9%; P < 0.04), and heart weights (11.4%; P < 0.02) were increased in males. These results demonstrate that in ovo administration of rh IGF-I alters feed efficiency, growth, and tissue development. This finding lends itself to significant improvements in broiler production efficiency and profitability. PMID:9872596

  18. Unscrambling Cyanobacteria Community Dynamics Related to Environmental Factors

    PubMed Central

    Bertos-Fortis, Mireia; Farnelid, Hanna M.; Lindh, Markus V.; Casini, Michele; Andersson, Agneta; Pinhassi, Jarone; Legrand, Catherine

    2016-01-01

    Future climate scenarios in the Baltic Sea project an increase of cyanobacterial bloom frequency and duration, attributed to eutrophication and climate change. Some cyanobacteria can be toxic and their impact on ecosystem services is relevant for a sustainable sea. Yet, there is limited understanding of the mechanisms regulating cyanobacterial diversity and biogeography. Here we unravel successional patterns and changes in cyanobacterial community structure using a 2-year monthly time- series during the productive season in a 100 km coastal-offshore transect using microscopy and high-throughput sequencing of 16S rRNA gene fragments. A total of 565 cyanobacterial OTUs were found, of which 231 where filamentous/colonial and 334 picocyanobacterial. Spatial differences in community structure between coastal and offshore waters were minor. An “epidemic population structure” (dominance of asingle cluster) was found for Aphanizomenon/Dolichospermum within the filamentous/colonial cyanobacterial community. In summer, this clusters imultaneously occurred with opportunistic clusters/OTUs, e.g., Nodularia spumigena and Pseudanabaena. Picocyanobacteria, Synechococcus/Cyanobium, formeda consistent but highly diverse group. Overall, the potential drivers structuring summer cyanobacterial communities were temperature and salinity. However, the different responses to environmental factors among and within genera suggest high niche specificity for individual OTUs. The recruitment and occurrence of potentially toxic filamentous/colonial clusters was likely related to disturbance such as mixing events and short-term shifts in salinity, and not solely dependent on increasing temperature and nitrogen-limiting conditions. Nutrients did not explain further the changes in cyanobacterial community composition. Novel occurrence patterns were identified as a strong seasonal succession revealing a tight coupling between the emergence of opportunistic picocynobacteria and the bloom offilamentous/colonialclusters. These findings highlight that if environmental conditions can partially explain the presence of opportunistic picocyanobacteria, microbial and trophic interactions with filamentous/colonial cyanobacteria should also be considered as potential shaping factors for single-celled communities. Regional climate change scenarios in the Baltic Sea predict environmental shifts leading to higher temperature and lower salinity; conditions identified here as favorable for opportunistic filamentous/colonial cyanobacteria. Altogether, the diversity and complexity of cyanobacterial communities reported here is far greater than previously known, emphasizing the importance of microbial interactions between filamentous and picocyanobacteria in the context of environmental disturbances.

  19. Nutritional and environmental factors in ethanol fermentation by Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    SciTech Connect

    Wong, H.; Wilke, C.R.; Blanch, H.W.

    1983-05-01

    Using Saccharomyces cerevisiae as a model system, a basic study of the nutritional and environmental factors in ethanol fermentation was carried out to provide fundamental and practical bases for design of fermentation media and culture conditions. The requirements for all active medium components need to be determined in order to establish balanced media, which are important to reduce raw materials costs and to minimize inhibition from buildup of excess feed components in recycle processes with selective ethanol removal. Pulse injection of nutrients into continuous cultures was an effective method for screening active nutrients. In a systematic sensitivity analysis the effect of feed concentration of these individual nutrients was then determined and allowed formulation of media optimal with respect to the major fermentation parameters. Biotin, pantothenate, myo-inositol, potassium and phosphates appeared to stimulate growth preferentially to ethanol production. In contrast, thiamine and pyridoxine appeared to enhance specific ethanol productivity. The effect of ammonium sulfate depended on concentration. A conceptual model was proposed to relate the effects of these nutrients to biochemical pathways and functions. With these data and model the minimum cost combination of raw materials to achieve a medium of well defined components can be determined with a linear program. This computer program shows that many growth factors and minerals can be added to media more economically as pure components than as fractions of complex factors. 225 references, 61 figures, 54 tables.

  20. Emerging Neurotoxic Mechanisms in Environmental Factors-Induced Neurodegeneration

    PubMed Central

    Kanthasamy, Anumantha; Jin, Huajun; Anantharam, Vellareddy; Sondarva, Gautam; Rangasamy, Velusamy; Rana, Ajay; Kanthasamy, Arthi

    2012-01-01

    Exposure to environmental neurotoxic metals, pesticides and other chemicals is increasingly recognized as a key risk factor in the pathogenesis of chronic neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases. Oxidative stress and apoptosis have been actively investigated as neurotoxic mechanisms over the past two decades, resulting in a greater understanding of neurotoxic processes. Nevertheless, emerging evidence indicates that epigenetic changes, protein aggregation and autophagy are important cellular and molecular correlates of neurodegenerative diseases resulting from chronic neurotoxic chemical exposure. During the Joint Conference of the 13th International Neurotoxicology Association and the 11th International Symposium on Neurobehavioral Methods and Effects in Occupational and Environmental Health, the recent progress made toward understanding epigenetic mechanisms, protein aggregation, autophagy, and deregulated kinase activation following neurotoxic chemical exposure and the relevance to neurodegenerative conditions were one of the themes of the symposium. Dr. Anumantha G. Kanthasamy described the role of acetylation of histones and non-histone proteins in neurotoxicant-induced neurodegenerative processes in the nigral dopaminergic neuronal system. Dr. Arthi Kanthasamy illustrated the role of autophagy as a key determinant in cell death events during neurotoxic insults. Dr. Ajay Rana provided evidence for posttranslational modification of α-synuclein protein by the Mixed Linage Kinase (MLK) group of kinases to initiate protein aggregation in cell culture and animal models of Parkinson’s disease. These presentations outlined emerging cutting edge mechanisms that might set the stage for future mechanistic investigations into new frontiers of molecular neurotoxicology. This report summarizes the views of symposium participants, with emphasis on future directions for study of environmentally and occupationally linked chronic neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:22342404

  1. Environmental Factors and Bioremediation of Xenobiotics Using White Rot Fungi

    PubMed Central

    Fragoeiro, Silvia; Bastos, Catarina

    2010-01-01

    This review provides background information on the importance of bioremediation approaches. It describes the roles of fungi, specifically white rot fungi, and their extracellular enzymes, laccases, ligninases, and peroxidises, in the degradation of xenobiotic compounds such as single and mixtures of pesticides. We discuss the importance of abiotic factors such as water potential, temperature, and pH stress when considering an environmental screening approach, and examples are provided of the differential effect of white rot fungi on the degradation of single and mixtures of pesticides using fungi such as Trametes versicolor and Phanerochaete chrysosporium. We also explore the formulation and delivery of fungal bioremedial inoculants to terrestrial ecosystems as well as the use of spent mushroom compost as an approach. Future areas for research and potential exploitation of new techniques are also considered. PMID:23956663

  2. The epidemiology of eating disorders: genetic, environmental, and societal factors

    PubMed Central

    Mitchison, Deborah; Hay, Phillipa J

    2014-01-01

    Background The aim of this review was to summarize the literature to date regarding the sociodemographic, environmental, and genetic correlates of eating disorders (EDs) in adults. Method A keyword search was entered into Scopus (SciVerse, Elsevier) to identify relevant articles published in English up until June 2013. Articles were assessed against a range of a priori inclusion and exclusion criteria. Results A total of 149 full-text articles were found to be eligible for the review and included 86 articles with data on sociodemographic correlates, 57 on environmental correlates, and 13 on genetic correlates. Female sex, younger age, sexual and physical abuse, participation in esthetic or weight-oriented sports, and heritability were found to be most consistently associated with higher ED prevalence and incidence. Conversely, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, education, and urbanicity did not appear to have strong associations with ED epidemiology. Conclusion More community-based research, with an equal representation of males, needs to be conducted to confirm the current findings and provide evidence for emerging factors that may be related to EDs. PMID:24728136

  3. Organizational, financial, and environmental factors influencing deans' tenure.

    PubMed

    Levin, R; Bhak, K; Moy, E; Valente, E; Griner, P F

    1998-06-01

    At a time when continuity of leadership in medical schools is most crucial, the tenures of deans continue to decrease. In the present study of factors influencing the tenures of 382 U.S. medical school deans from 1985 to 1994, the authors focused on issues that were likely to have had a greater impact on deans' tenures in recent years. They assumed that longer tenures are associated with less complex organizational factors and more stable environmental factors. Conversely, they assumed that deans and their tenures are adversely affected by an institution's declining financial health, a complex organizational structure, and a changing clinical marketplace where there is rapid growth of managed care. The authors compared the relationships between these factors and the length of deans' tenures during the ten-year period studied. Among the most important findings were the fact that schools that were less healthy financially, that had the same owner as the primary teaching hospital, and that had smaller numbers of faculty tended to have shorter dean's tenures and higher turnovers of deans. While the reason for shorter tenures of deans at schools that are less financially healthy is understandable, the effect of common ownership of the school and teaching hospital is less obvious, but perhaps the greater preoccupation of deans with the clinical enterprise in that circumstance is a significant constraint. The authors hope that the insights from their findings will be useful to future candidates for deanships in their negotiations with university officials and will help all parties reach more explicit agreements on such issues as expectations for financial performance of the medical school and the roles and relationships of the dean and the teaching hospital director. PMID:9653400

  4. Early life epigenetic programming and transmission of stress-induced traits in mammals: how and when can environmental factors influence traits and their transgenerational inheritance?

    PubMed

    Gapp, Katharina; von Ziegler, Lukas; Tweedie-Cullen, Ry Yves; Mansuy, Isabelle M

    2014-05-01

    The environment can have a long-lasting influence on an individual's physiology and behavior. While some environmental conditions can be beneficial and result in adaptive responses, others can lead to pathological behaviors. Many studies have demonstrated that changes induced by the environment are expressed not only by the individuals directly exposed, but also by the offspring sometimes across multiple generations. Epigenetic alterations have been proposed as underlying mechanisms for such transmissible effects. Here, we review the most relevant literature on these changes and the developmental stages they affect the most. We discuss current evidence for transgenerational effects of prenatal and postnatal factors on bodily functions and behavioral responses, and the potential epigenetic mechanisms involved. We also discuss the need for a careful evaluation of the evolutionary importance with respect to health and disease, and possible directions for future research in the field. PMID:24585414

  5. Fetal and postnatal ovine mesenteric vascular reactivity

    PubMed Central

    Nair, Jayasree; Gugino, Sylvia F.; Nielsen, Lori C.; Caty, Michael G.; Lakshminrusimha, Satyan

    2016-01-01

    BACKGROUND Intestinal circulation and mesenteric arterial (MA) reactivity may play a role in preparing the fetus for enteral nutrition. We hypothesized that MA vasoreactivity changes with gestation and vasodilator pathways predominate in the postnatal period. METHODS Small distal MA rings (0.5-mm diameter) were isolated from fetal (116-d, 128-d, 134-d, and 141-d gestation, term ~ 147 d) and postnatal lambs. Vasoreactivity was evaluated using vasoconstrictors (norepinephrine (NE) after pretreatment with propranolol and endothelin-1(ET-1)) and vasodilators (NO donors A23187 and s-nitrosopenicillamine (SNAP)). Protein and mRNA assays for receptors and enzymes (endothelin receptor A, alpha-adrenergic receptor 1A (ADRA1A), endothelial NO synthase (eNOS), soluble guanylyl cyclase (sGC), and phosphodiesterase5 (PDE5)) were performed in mesenteric arteries. RESULTS MA constriction to NE and ET-1 peaked at 134 d. Relaxation to A23187 and SNAP was maximal after birth. Basal eNOS activity was low at 134 d. ADRA1A mRNA and protein increasedsignificantlyat134danddecreasedpostnatally.sGC and PDE5 protein increased from 134 to 141 d. CONCLUSION Mesenteric vasoconstriction predominates in late-preterm gestation (134 d; the postconceptional age with the highest incidence of necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC)) followed by a conversion to vasodilatory influences near the time of full-term birth. Perturbations in this ontogenic mechanism, including preterm birth, may be a risk factor for NEC. PMID:26672733

  6. Environmental factors affecting pregnancy: endocrine disrupters, nutrients and metabolic pathways.

    PubMed

    Bazer, Fuller W; Wu, Guoyao; Johnson, Gregory A; Wang, Xiaoqiu

    2014-12-01

    Uterine adenogenesis, a unique post-natal event in mammals, is vulnerable to endocrine disruption by estrogens and progestins resulting in infertility or reduced prolificacy. The absence of uterine glands results in insufficient transport of nutrients into the uterine lumen to support conceptus development. Arginine, a component of histotroph, is substrate for production of nitric oxide, polyamines and agmatine and, with secreted phosphoprotein 1, it affects cytoskeletal organization of trophectoderm. Arginine is critical for development of the conceptus, pregnancy recognition signaling, implantation and placentation. Conceptuses of ungulates and cetaceans convert glucose to fructose which is metabolized via multiple pathways to support growth and development. However, high fructose corn syrup in soft drinks and foods may increase risks for metabolic disorders and increase insulin resistance in adults. Understanding endocrine disrupters and dietary substances, and novel pathways for nutrient metabolism during pregnancy can improve survival and growth, and prevent chronic metabolic diseases in offspring. PMID:25224489

  7. Nutritional and environmental factors in ethanol fermentation by Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    SciTech Connect

    Wong, H.

    1983-01-01

    Using Saccharomyces cerevisiae as a model system, a basic study of the nutritional and environmental factors in ethanol fermentation was carried out to provide fundamental and practical bases for design of fermentation media and culture conditions. The requirements for all active medium components need to be determined in order to establish balanced media, which are important to reduce raw materials costs and to minimize inhibition from build-up of excess feed components in recycle processes with selective ethanol removal. The effect of feed concentration of individual nutrients was determined and allowed formulation of media optimal with respect to the major fermentation parameters. Biotin, pantothenate, myoinositol, potassium, and phosphates appeared to stimulate growth preferentially to ethanol production. Thiamine and pyridoxine appeared to have the opposite effect. A conceptual model was proposed to relate the effects of these nutrients to biochemical pathways and functions. The minimum cost combination of raw materials to achieve a medium of well defined components can be determined with a linear program. The effect of dissolved oxygen was studied from essentially zero to 346 mm Hg oxygen tension, showing a continuous decline in specific ethanol productivity with increasing oxygen over this range. Long term continuous cultures resulted in decreased media requirements for growth factors and increased tolerance for ethanol inhibition, most probably through adaptation. An ethanol productivity of 5.6 g/l-hr in continuous culture was achieved with a completely synthetic medium with the improved culture.

  8. A review on environmental factors regulating arsenic methylation in humans.

    PubMed

    Tseng, Chin-Hsiao

    2009-03-15

    Subjects exposed to arsenic show significant inter-individual variation in urinary patterns of arsenic metabolites but insignificant day-to-day intra-individual variation. The inter-individual variation in arsenic methylation can be partly responsible for the variation in susceptibility to arsenic toxicity. Wide inter-ethnic variation and family correlation in urinary arsenic profile suggest a genetic effect on arsenic metabolism. In this paper the environmental factors affecting arsenic metabolism are reviewed. Methylation capacity might reduce with increasing dosage of arsenic exposure. Furthermore, women, especially at pregnancy, have better methylation capacity than their men counterparts, probably due to the effect of estrogen. Children might have better methylation capacity than adults and age shows inconsistent relevance in adults. Smoking and alcohol consumption might be associated with a poorer methylation capacity. Nutritional status is important in the methylation capacity and folate may facilitate the methylation and excretion of arsenic. Besides, general health conditions and medications might influence the arsenic methylation capacity; and technical problems can cause biased estimates. The consumption of seafood, seaweed, rice and other food with high arsenic contents and the extent of cooking and arsenic-containing water used in food preparation may also interfere with the presentation of the urinary arsenic profile. Future studies are necessary to clarify the effects of the various arsenic metabolites including the trivalent methylated forms on the development of arsenic-induced human diseases with the consideration of the effects of confounding factors and the interactions with other effect modifiers. PMID:19168087

  9. A review on environmental factors regulating arsenic methylation in humans

    SciTech Connect

    Tseng, C.-H.

    2009-03-15

    Subjects exposed to arsenic show significant inter-individual variation in urinary patterns of arsenic metabolites but insignificant day-to-day intra-individual variation. The inter-individual variation in arsenic methylation can be partly responsible for the variation in susceptibility to arsenic toxicity. Wide inter-ethnic variation and family correlation in urinary arsenic profile suggest a genetic effect on arsenic metabolism. In this paper the environmental factors affecting arsenic metabolism are reviewed. Methylation capacity might reduce with increasing dosage of arsenic exposure. Furthermore, women, especially at pregnancy, have better methylation capacity than their men counterparts, probably due to the effect of estrogen. Children might have better methylation capacity than adults and age shows inconsistent relevance in adults. Smoking and alcohol consumption might be associated with a poorer methylation capacity. Nutritional status is important in the methylation capacity and folate may facilitate the methylation and excretion of arsenic. Besides, general health conditions and medications might influence the arsenic methylation capacity; and technical problems can cause biased estimates. The consumption of seafood, seaweed, rice and other food with high arsenic contents and the extent of cooking and arsenic-containing water used in food preparation may also interfere with the presentation of the urinary arsenic profile. Future studies are necessary to clarify the effects of the various arsenic metabolites including the trivalent methylated forms on the development of arsenic-induced human diseases with the consideration of the effects of confounding factors and the interactions with other effect modifiers.

  10. Neuropathology and Animal Models of Autism: Genetic and Environmental Factors

    PubMed Central

    Gadad, Bharathi S.; Young, Keith A.; German, Dwight C.

    2013-01-01

    Autism is a heterogeneous behaviorally defined neurodevelopmental disorder. It is defined by the presence of marked social deficits, specific language abnormalities, and stereotyped repetitive patterns of behavior. Because of the variability in the behavioral phenotype of the disorder among patients, the term autism spectrum disorder has been established. In the first part of this review, we provide an overview of neuropathological findings from studies of autism postmortem brains and identify the cerebellum as one of the key brain regions that can play a role in the autism phenotype. We review research findings that indicate possible links between the environment and autism including the role of mercury and immune-related factors. Because both genes and environment can alter the structure of the developing brain in different ways, it is not surprising that there is heterogeneity in the behavioral and neuropathological phenotypes of autism spectrum disorders. Finally, we describe animal models of autism that occur following insertion of different autism-related genes and exposure to environmental factors, highlighting those models which exhibit both autism-like behavior and neuropathology. PMID:24151553

  11. Modulation of the Genome and Epigenome of Individuals Susceptible to Autism by Environmental Risk Factors

    PubMed Central

    Koufaris, Costas; Sismani, Carolina

    2015-01-01

    Diverse environmental factors have been implicated with the development of autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Genetic factors also underlie the differential vulnerability to environmental risk factors of susceptible individuals. Currently the way in which environmental risk factors interact with genetic factors to increase the incidence of ASD is not well understood. A greater understanding of the metabolic, cellular, and biochemical events involved in gene x environment interactions in ASD would have important implications for the prevention and possible treatment of the disorder. In this review we discuss various established and more alternative processes through which environmental factors implicated in ASD can modulate the genome and epigenome of genetically-susceptible individuals. PMID:25903146

  12. Modulation of the genome and epigenome of individuals susceptible to autism by environmental risk factors.

    PubMed

    Koufaris, Costas; Sismani, Carolina

    2015-01-01

    Diverse environmental factors have been implicated with the development of autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Genetic factors also underlie the differential vulnerability to environmental risk factors of susceptible individuals. Currently the way in which environmental risk factors interact with genetic factors to increase the incidence of ASD is not well understood. A greater understanding of the metabolic, cellular, and biochemical events involved in gene x environment interactions in ASD would have important implications for the prevention and possible treatment of the disorder. In this review we discuss various established and more alternative processes through which environmental factors implicated in ASD can modulate the genome and epigenome of genetically-susceptible individuals. PMID:25903146

  13. Predictors of Intelligence at the Age of 5: Family, Pregnancy and Birth Characteristics, Postnatal Influences, and Postnatal Growth

    PubMed Central

    Eriksen, Hanne-Lise Falgreen; Kesmodel, Ulrik Schiøler; Underbjerg, Mette; Kilburn, Tina Røndrup; Bertrand, Jacquelyn; Mortensen, Erik Lykke

    2013-01-01

    Parental education and maternal intelligence are well-known predictors of child IQ. However, the literature regarding other factors that may contribute to individual differences in IQ is inconclusive. The aim of this study was to examine the contribution of a number of variables whose predictive status remain unclarified, in a sample of basically healthy children with a low rate of pre- and postnatal complications. 1,782 5-year-old children sampled from the Danish National Birth Cohort (2003–2007) were assessed with a short form of the Wechsler Preschool and Primary Scale of Intelligence – Revised. Information on parental characteristics, pregnancy and birth factors, postnatal influences, and postnatal growth was collected during pregnancy and at follow-up. A model including study design variables and child’s sex explained 7% of the variance in IQ, while parental education and maternal IQ increased the explained variance to 24%. Other predictors were parity, maternal BMI, birth weight, breastfeeding, and the child’s head circumference and height at follow-up. These variables, however, only increased the explained variance to 29%. The results suggest that parental education and maternal IQ are major predictors of IQ and should be included routinely in studies of cognitive development. Obstetrical and postnatal factors also predict IQ, but their contribution may be of comparatively limited magnitude. PMID:24236109

  14. Predictors of intelligence at the age of 5: family, pregnancy and birth characteristics, postnatal influences, and postnatal growth.

    PubMed

    Eriksen, Hanne-Lise Falgreen; Kesmodel, Ulrik Schiøler; Underbjerg, Mette; Kilburn, Tina Røndrup; Bertrand, Jacquelyn; Mortensen, Erik Lykke

    2013-01-01

    Parental education and maternal intelligence are well-known predictors of child IQ. However, the literature regarding other factors that may contribute to individual differences in IQ is inconclusive. The aim of this study was to examine the contribution of a number of variables whose predictive status remain unclarified, in a sample of basically healthy children with a low rate of pre- and postnatal complications. 1,782 5-year-old children sampled from the Danish National Birth Cohort (2003-2007) were assessed with a short form of the Wechsler Preschool and Primary Scale of Intelligence - Revised. Information on parental characteristics, pregnancy and birth factors, postnatal influences, and postnatal growth was collected during pregnancy and at follow-up. A model including study design variables and child's sex explained 7% of the variance in IQ, while parental education and maternal IQ increased the explained variance to 24%. Other predictors were parity, maternal BMI, birth weight, breastfeeding, and the child's head circumference and height at follow-up. These variables, however, only increased the explained variance to 29%. The results suggest that parental education and maternal IQ are major predictors of IQ and should be included routinely in studies of cognitive development. Obstetrical and postnatal factors also predict IQ, but their contribution may be of comparatively limited magnitude. PMID:24236109

  15. Preschool Temperament and Environmental Factors Related to the Five-Factor Model of Personality in Middle Childhood.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hagekull, Berit; Bohlin, Gunilla

    1998-01-01

    A prospective study investigated associations between preschool temperament and environmental factors and school-age personality in 93 Swedish children. Found that personality was predicted by early temperament and environmental factors such as external day care and negative life events. Extraversion was most clearly related to temperament.

  16. [Effect of environmental factors on photosynthetic physiology and flavonoid constituent of Scutellaria baicalensis].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yong-Gang; Han, Mei; Jiang, Xue; Zhao, Sheng-Nan; Yang, Li-Min

    2014-05-01

    To discuss the effect of environmental factors and photosynthesis on the growing of plant and the content of active components in Scutellaria baicalensis, the photosynthetic physiology index and diurnal changes of flavonoid constituent of S. Baicalensis were observed and tested in flowering and fruiting stages, and in the meantime environmental parameters were recorded. The obtained data were analyzed data by using path analysis and gray correlation analysis. The results showed that PAR and SWC were important environmental factors impacting on photosynthesis of S. baicalensis. SWC, RH and Ca were important environmental factors impacting on baicalin content. PAR, Po and Ta were important environmental factors impacting on baicalein content. PMID:25282878

  17. Cultural variations in interpretation of postnatal illness: Jinn possession amongst Muslim communities.

    PubMed

    Hanely, Jane; Brown, Amy

    2014-04-01

    Maternal experience of emotional and physical disturbance during the postnatal period is a worldwide occurrence but may be interpreted differently according to cultural background. Little is known about different expressions and treatment of cultural phenomena during the postnatal period such as the affliction of Jinn possession in Arabic cultures. Jinn are considered to be evil spirits, which cause emotional and physical distress at times of vulnerability such as the postnatal period. The aim of this paper was to explore maternal experience of Jinn possession and draw parallels with Western interpretations of postnatal illness. Ten women in an Arabian Gulf state who had recently given birth and identified themselves as having Jinn possession were interviewed as to their experiences of Jinn possession. Mothers described the Jinn as evil spirits who cause symptoms such as sadness, anxiety and physical malaise during the postnatal period. Numerous risk factors for possession emerged such as lack of familial support, poverty and a traumatic birth. Clear parallels emerged between Western concepts of postnatal illness and Jinn possession. Mothers in Muslim cultures may experience Jinn possession during the postnatal period, which reflects similar symptoms and aetiology to Western concepts of postnatal illness. With increasing multiculturalism in the UK, understanding the origins and perception of Jinn possession is important for health professionals working in Muslim communities here. PMID:23955293

  18. Systematic Evaluation of Key L-Carnitine Homeostasis Mechanisms during Postnatal Development in Rat

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The conditionally essential nutrient, L-carnitine, plays a critical role in a number of physiological processes vital to normal neonatal growth and development. We conducted a systematic evaluation of the developmental changes in key L-carnitine homeostasis mechanisms in the postnatal rat to better understand the interrelationship between these pathways and their correlation to ontogenic changes in L-carnitine levels during postnatal development. Methods mRNA expression of heart, kidney and intestinal L-carnitine transporters, liver γ-butyrobetaine hydroxylase (Bbh) and trimethyllysine hydroxylase (Tmlh), and heart carnitine palmitoyltransferase (Cpt) were measured using quantitative RT-PCR. L-Carnitine levels were determined by HPLC-UV. Cpt and Bbh activity were measured by a spectrophotometric method and HPLC, respectively. Results Serum and heart L-carnitine levels increased with postnatal development. Increases in serum L-carnitine correlated significantly with postnatal increases in renal organic cation/carnitine transporter 2 (Octn2) expression, and was further matched by postnatal increases in intestinal Octn1 expression and hepatic γ-Bbh activity. Postnatal increases in heart L-carnitine levels were significantly correlated to postnatal increases in heart Octn2 expression. Although cardiac high energy phosphate substrate levels remained constant through postnatal development, creatine showed developmental increases with advancing neonatal age. mRNA levels of Cpt1b and Cpt2 significantly increased at postnatal day 20, which was not accompanied by a similar increase in activity. Conclusions Several L-carnitine homeostasis pathways underwent significant ontogenesis during postnatal development in the rat. This information will facilitate future studies on factors affecting the developmental maturation of L-carnitine homeostasis mechanisms and how such factors might affect growth and development. PMID:22805277

  19. Environmental factors influencing stress corrosion cracking in boiling water reactors

    SciTech Connect

    Weeks, J.R.

    1984-01-01

    The mechanisms of intergranular stress corrosion cracking (IGSCC) of sensitized stainless steels in boiling water reactor (BWR) primary coolant are reviewed, with emphasis on the role the environment plays on both the initiation and propagation processes. Environmental factors discussed include oxygen (corrosion potential), temperature, and dissolved ions in the water and the range of strain rates at which IGSCC occurs. Both crack propagation rates and the range of strain rates at which IGSCC occurs decrease rapidly as temperature is increased above approximately 200/sup 0/C, in essentially the same manner as the solubility of magnetite decreases in acidic solutions. A mechanism of crack propagation is presented base on this observation. To establish water chemistry guidelines for crack-free operation of BWR's containing sensitized stainless steel, more information is needed on the role of absorption of impurities in the surface and deposited oxides and on the interaction between the oxygen and impurity levels required to maintain an electrochemical potential in a range where IGSCC is unlikely to occur. The relative effects of short bursts of impurities and longer term lower concentrations of these same impurities also need to be evaluated.

  20. Environmental factors influencing diatom communities in Antarctic cryoconite holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stanish, L. F.; Bagshaw, E. A.; McKnight, D. M.; Fountain, A. G.; Tranter, M.

    2013-12-01

    Cryoconite holes are ice-bound habitats that can act as refuges for aquatic and terrestrial microorganisms on glacier surfaces. In the McMurdo Dry Valleys of Antarctica, these holes are often capped by an ice lid that prevents the exchange of material and gases with the surrounding atmosphere and aquatic environment. Diatoms have been documented in cryoconite holes, and recent findings suggest that these habitats may harbour a distinctive diatom flora compared to the surrounding aquatic environments. In this study, we examined diatom community composition in cryoconite holes and environmental correlates across three glaciers in Taylor Valley, Antarctica. The diatom communities were dominated by two genera, Muelleria and Diadesmis, both of which had high viability and could have been seeded from the surrounding ephemeral streams. The location of the cryoconite hole within the valley was a key determinant of community composition. A diatom species richness gradient was observed that corresponded to distance inland from the coast and co-varied with species richness in streams within the same lake basin. Cryoconite holes that were adjacent to streams with higher diversity displayed greater species richness. However, physical factors, such as the ability to withstand freeze-thaw conditions and to colonize coarse sediments, acted as additional selective filters and influenced diatom diversity, viability and community composition.

  1. Environmental factors affecting indole metabolism under anaerobic conditions

    SciTech Connect

    Madsen, E.L.; Francis, A.J.; Bollag, J.M.

    1988-01-01

    The influence of physiological and environmental factors on the accumulation of oxindole during anaerobic indole metabolism was investigated by high-performance liquid chromatography. Under methanogenic conditions, indole was temporarily converted to oxindole in stoichiometric amounts in media inoculated with three freshwater sediments and an organic soil. In media inoculated with methanogenic sewage sludge, the modest amounts of oxindole detected at 35/sup 0/C reached higher concentrations and persisted longer when the incubation temperature was decreased from 35 to 15/sup 0/C. Also, decreasing the concentration of sewage sludge used as an inoculum from 50 to 1% caused an increase in the accumulation of oxindole from 10 to 75% of the indole added. Under denitrifying conditions, regardless of the concentration or source of the inoculum, oxindole appeared in trace amounts but did not accumulate during indole metabolism. In addition, denitrifying consortia which previously metabolized indole degraded oxindole with no lag period. Our data suggest that oxindole accumulation under methanogenic, but not under denitrifying conditions is caused by differences between relative rates of oxindole production and destruction.

  2. Environmental market factors associated with physician career satisfaction.

    PubMed

    Mazurenko, Olena; Menachemi, Nir

    2012-01-01

    Previous research has found that physician career satisfaction is declining, but no study has examined the relationship between market factors and physician career satisfaction. Using a theoretical framework, we examined how various aspects of the market environment (e.g., munificence, dynamism, complexity) are related to overall career satisfaction. Nationally representative data from the 2008 Health Tracking Physician Survey were combined with environmental market variables from the 2008 Area Resource File. After controlling for physician and practice characteristics, at least one variable each representing munificence, dynamism, and complexity was associated with satisfaction. An increase in the market number of primary care physicians per capita was positively associated with physician career satisfaction (OR = 2.11, 95% CI: 1.13 to 3.9) whereas an increase in the number of specialists per capita was negatively associated with physician satisfaction (OR = 0.68, 95% CI: 0.48 to 0.97). Moreover, an increase in poverty rates was negatively associated with physician career satisfaction (OR = 0.95, 95% CI: 0.91 to 1.01). Lastly, physicians practicing in states with a malpractice crisis (OR = 0.81, 95% CI: 0.68 to 0.96) and/or those who perceived high competition in their markets (OR = 0.76, 95% CI: 0.61 to 0.95) had lower odds of being satisfied. A better understanding of an organization's environment could assist healthcare managers in shaping their policies and strategies to increase physician satisfaction. PMID:23087994

  3. Postnatal mental distress in relation to the sociocultural practices of childbirth: an exploratory qualitative study from Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Hanlon, Charlotte; Whitley, Rob; Wondimagegn, Dawit; Alem, Atalay; Prince, Martin

    2009-10-01

    Sociocultural patterning of the postnatal period in non-Western settings has been hypothesised to protect against postnatal depression. In 2004, in a predominantly rural area of Ethiopia, we conducted 25 in-depth interviews and five focus group discussions with purposively selected participants including perinatal women, fathers, grandmothers, traditional and religious leaders, birth attendants and community leaders. Our main objectives were (1) to examine societal recognition of problematic distress states in the postnatal period and relate this to Western conceptualisations of postnatal depression and (2) to relate the occurrence of distress states to sociocultural patterning of the postnatal period. Inductive analysis was employed to identify salient themes. Participants spontaneously described culturally problematic distress states occurring in the postnatal period, although did not consider them to be illness. Vulnerability and danger of the postnatal period was emphasised, with risk of supernatural attack and physical harm leading to distress states. Participants also spoke of how gender disadvantage and economic strain intersect with cultural patterning of the postnatal period, threatening mental health due to the resulting disappointed expectations and exclusion, as well as exacerbation of pre-existing problems. Cultural dissonance, where a person's beliefs or actions are out of kilter with strong prevailing cultural norms, may be an important risk factor for postnatal distress in rural Ethiopia, where the postnatal period is extensively culturally elaborated. PMID:19709793

  4. Postnatal mental distress in relation to the sociocultural practices of childbirth: An exploratory qualitative study from Ethiopia☆

    PubMed Central

    Hanlon, Charlotte; Whitley, Rob; Wondimagegn, Dawit; Alem, Atalay; Prince, Martin

    2009-01-01

    Sociocultural patterning of the postnatal period in non-Western settings has been hypothesised to protect against postnatal depression. In 2004, in a predominantly rural area of Ethiopia, we conducted 25 in-depth interviews and five focus group discussions with purposively selected participants including perinatal women, fathers, grandmothers, traditional and religious leaders, birth attendants and community leaders. Our main objectives were (1) to examine societal recognition of problematic distress states in the postnatal period and relate this to Western conceptualisations of postnatal depression and (2) to relate the occurrence of distress states to sociocultural patterning of the postnatal period. Inductive analysis was employed to identify salient themes. Participants spontaneously described culturally problematic distress states occurring in the postnatal period, although did not consider them to be illness. Vulnerability and danger of the postnatal period was emphasised, with risk of supernatural attack and physical harm leading to distress states. Participants also spoke of how gender disadvantage and economic strain intersect with cultural patterning of the postnatal period, threatening mental health due to the resulting disappointed expectations and exclusion, as well as exacerbation of pre-existing problems. Cultural dissonance, where a person's beliefs or actions are out of kilter with strong prevailing cultural norms, may be an important risk factor for postnatal distress in rural Ethiopia, where the postnatal period is extensively culturally elaborated. PMID:19709793

  5. The effects of space relevant environmental factors on halophilic Archaea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leuko, Stefan; Moeller, Ralf; Rettberg, Petra

    Within the last 50 years, space technology has provided tools for transporting terrestrial (microbial) life beyond Earth's protective shield in order to study its responses to selected conditions of space. Microorganisms are ubiquitous and can be found in almost every environment on Earth. They thrive and survive in a broad spectrum of environments and are true masters in adapting to rapidly changing external conditions. Although microorganisms cannot actively grow under the harsh conditions of outer space or other known planets, some microorganisms might be able to survive for a time in space or other planets as dormant, inactive spores or in similar desiccation-resistant resting states, e.g., enclosed in halite crystals or biofilms. Halite crystals are the realm of halophilic Archaea as they have adapted to life at extreme salt concentrations. They can stay entrapped in such crystals for millions of years without losing viability and therefore the family Halobacteriaceae belongs to the group of microorganisms which may survive space travel or may even be found on other planets. Several members of this family have been utilized in space relevant experiments where they were exposed to detrimental environmental conditions such as UV-C radiation, vacuum, temperature cycles (+60(°) C and -25(°) C) and heavy iron bombardment (150 MeV He, 500 MeV Ar and 500 MeV Fe ions). The viability was evaluated by colony forming unit (cfu) counts as well as with the LIFE/DEAD kit. Results revealed that UV-C radiation (up to 1.000 J/m (2) ) has a considerable effect on the viability, whereas the other tested parameters inflict little damage onto the organisms. Repair of UV-C inflicted damage is efficient and several DNA damage repair genes are up-regulated following exposure. Halophilic archaea display a strong resistance against heavy iron bombardment, with dosages of up to 2.000 Gy 500 MeV Fe ions needed to establish a visible effect on the vitality. Genomic integrity after exposure was investigated by several different methods e.g. RAPD - PCR, a technique that elucidates damages within the genome by different amplification patterns. Overall experimental results indicate that halophilic Archaea are able to withstand the exposure to space related environmental factors for a considerable time. This work in combined with others will lead to a detailed understanding of the response of extraterrestrial conditions to halophilic Archaea for astrobiological considerations.

  6. Combining environmental factors and agriculturalists' observations of environmental changes in the traditional terrace system of the Amalfi coast (southern Italy).

    PubMed

    Savo, Valentina; Caneva, Giulia; McClatchey, Will; Reedy, David; Salvati, Luca

    2014-04-01

    Terraces are traditional engineered ecosystems that affect the hydro-geological equilibrium, slope stability, and local communities. The aims of this paper are (i) identifying environmental factors that affect terrace stability in the Amalfi Coast, (ii) defining agriculturalists' observations on environmental changes within that system and (iii) exploring potentiality of these observations to better define conservation strategies. All available data on physical and ecological factors recognized to affect the terrace system were collected and analyzed. Interviews were conducted with agriculturalists to obtain long-term observations on environmental factors that interact with this system. Landslides are more frequent where rainfall is high and during winter. Fires have an uneven annual distribution, with higher frequency during summers. Agriculturalists detailed complex interactions among environmental factors, economic elements, and terraces. These observations represent a valuable resource for defining causes and effects of abandonment and for better addressing conservation strategies. PMID:24026942

  7. Cellular monitoring systems for the assessment of space environmental factors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hellweg, C. E.; Arenz, A.; Meier, M. M.; Baumstark-Khan, C.

    Harmful environmental factors - namely ionizing radiation - will continue to influence future manned space missions. The Cellular Biodiagnostic group at the German Aerospace Center (DLR) develops cellular monitoring systems, which include bacterial and mammalian cell systems capable of recognizing DNA damage as a consequence of the presence of genotoxic conditions. Such bioassay or biosensor systems will complement the physical detector systems used in space, insofar as they yield intrinsically biologically weighted measures of cellular responses. Furthermore, synergistic mutagenic and cancerogenic impacts of the radiation environment together with other potentially genotoxic constituents of the space habitat can be quantified using such systems, whose signals are especially relevant for the molecular damage to the DNA or the chromosomes. The experiment Cellular Responses to Radiation in Space (CERASP) has been selected by NASA to be performed on the International Space Station. It will supply basic information on the cellular response to radiation applied in microgravity. One of the biological end-points under investigation will be survival reflected by radiation-dependent reduction of constitutive expression of the enhanced variant of green fluorescent protein (EGFP), originally isolated from the bioluminescent jellyfish Aequorea victoria. A second end-point will be gene activation by space flight conditions in mammalian cells, based on fluorescent promoter reporter systems using the destabilized EGFP variant (d2EGFP). The promoter element to be investigated will reflect the activity of the NF-kB stress response pathway as an anti-apoptotic radiation response. DNA damage will be measured by fluorescent analysis of DNA unwinding (FADU). The systems have worked properly for terrestrial applications during the first experiments. Experiments using accelerated particles produced at the French heavy ion accelerator GANIL have given insights into cellular mechanisms relevant for the exceptional radiation field in space. Keywords: space, green fluorescent protein, radiation, gene activation, bioassay, genotoxicity

  8. Properties of peatlands in relation to environmental factors in Minnesota

    SciTech Connect

    Swanson, D.K.

    1988-01-01

    The relationship of peatland morphology and distribution to environmental factors was investigated in northern and central Minnesota by field sampling of vegetation, soils, and water, and by remote sensing. Maps of peatlands made by machine classification of Landsat data six classes matched field data in 56% of all cases; maps drawn by hand on 1:80,000 scale aerial photographs were 72% correct. Peatland sites fall into two natural groups: ombrotrophic (bogs; pH less than 4.4) and minerotrophic (fens and swamps: pH 4.4 or more and usually greater than 5.6). The presence of certain common vascular-plant taxa can be used to classify sites into these trophic classes with over 90% accuracy. The structure of peatland vegetation is controlled by the soil-water regime, the disturbance history, and, to a less degree, by trophic conditions. Sites that have relatively well-aerated soils and have not been recently disturbed support dense forests. Vegetation structure is weakly related to the degree of decomposition of peat; hence vegetation is a poor indicator for taxonomic units of organic soils. Peatlands are common in Minnesota on surfaces glaciated during the Wisconsin Stage and where the mean annual potential evapotranspiration roughly equals or exceeds the mean annual precipitation. Bogs occur most often on sites where a high water table can be maintained without groundwater discharge, such as in depressions on low-permeability substrates and near local watershed divides on plains. Fens apparently occur in or below areas of groundwater discharge. Swamps (densely forested minerotrophic peatlands) occur in a wide variety of settings where the soil is aerated during the growing season.

  9. Rapid population growth and environmental degradation: ultimate versus proximate factors.

    PubMed

    Shaw, R P

    1989-01-01

    This philosophical review of 2 arguments about responsibility for and solutions to environmental degradation concludes that both sides are correct: the ultimate and the proximal causes. Ultimate causes of pollution are defined as the technology responsible for a given type of pollution, such as burning fossil fuel; proximate causes are defined as situation-specific factors confounding the problem, such as population density or rate of growth. Commoner and others argue that developed countries with low or negative population growth rates are responsible for 80% of world pollution, primarily in polluting technologies such as automobiles, power generation, plastics, pesticides, toxic wastes, garbage, warfaring, and nuclear weapons wastes. Distortionary policies also contribute; examples are agricultural trade protection, land mismanagement, urban bias in expenditures, and institutional rigidity., Poor nations are responsible for very little pollution because poverty allows little waste or expenditures for polluting, synthetic technologies. The proximal causes of pollution include numbers and rate of growth of populations responsible for the pollution. Since change in the ultimate cause of pollution remains out of reach, altering the numbers of polluters can make a difference. Predictions are made for proportions of the world's total waste production, assuming current 1.6 tons/capita for developed countries and 0.17 tons/capita for developing countries. If developing countries grow at current rates and become more wealthy, they will be emitting half the world's waste by 2025. ON the other hand, unsustainable population growth goes along with inadequate investment in human capital: education, health, employment, infrastructure. The solution is to improve farming technologies in the 117 non-self-sufficient countries, fund development in the most unsustainable enclaves of growing countries, break institutionalized socio-political rigidity in these enclaves, and focus on educating and empowering women in these enclaves. Women are in charge of birth spacing and all aspects of management of energy, food, water and the local environment, more so than men, in most countries. PMID:12284190

  10. Factors Predicting the Ocular Surface Response to Desiccating Environmental Stress

    PubMed Central

    Alex, Anastasia; Edwards, Austin; Hays, J. Daniel; Kerkstra, Michelle; Shih, Amanda; de Paiva, Cintia S.; Pflugfelder, Stephen C.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose. To identify factors predicting the ocular surface response to experimental desiccating stress. Methods. The ocular surfaces of both eyes of 15 normal and 10 dry eye subjects wearing goggles were exposed to a controlled desiccating environment (15%–25% relative humidity and 2–5 L/min airflow) for 90 minutes. Eye irritation symptoms, blink rate, tear meniscus dimensions, noninvasive (RBUT) and invasive tear break-up time, and corneal fluorescein and conjunctival lissamine green-dye staining were recorded before and after desiccating stress. Pre- and postexposure measurements were compared, and Pearson correlations between clinical parameters before and after desiccating stress were calculated. Results. Corneal and conjunctival dye staining significantly increased in all subjects following 90-minute exposure to desiccating environment, and the magnitude of change was similar in normal and dry eye subjects; except superior cornea staining was greater in dry eye. Irritation severity in the desiccating environment was associated with baseline dye staining, baseline tear meniscus height, and blink rate after 45 minutes. Desiccation-induced change in corneal fluorescein staining was inversely correlated to baseline tear meniscus width, whereas change in total ocular surface dye staining was inversely correlated to baseline dye staining, RBUT, and tear meniscus height and width. Blink rate from 30 to 90 minutes in desiccating environment was higher in the dry eye than normal group. Blink rate significantly correlated to baseline corneal fluorescein staining and environmental-induced change in corneal fluorescein staining. Conclusions. Ocular surface dye staining increases in response to desiccating stress. Baseline ocular surface dye staining, tear meniscus height, and blink rate predict severity of ocular surface dye staining following exposure to a desiccating environment. PMID:23572103

  11. The role of environmental factors in autoimmune thyroiditis.

    PubMed

    Hybenova, Monika; Hrda, Pavlina; Procházková, Jarmila; Stejskal, Vera; Sterzl, Ivan

    2010-01-01

    Environmental factors can play an important role in the development of autoimmune thyroiditis (AT) and other autoimmune diseases. This article reviews the role of heavy metals and infectious agents in AT. Currently, the genes responsible for a metal-induced pathology are known in experimental animals but similar knowledge is lacking in man. Metals such as nickel or mercury induce delayed type T cell hypersensitivity (allergy) which is relatively common, especially in women. T-cell allergy can be studied with the lymphocyte transformation test, LTT-MELISA. It has been found that patients with AT and other autoimmune diseases, such as multiple sclerosis, psoriasis, systemic lupus erythematosus and atopic eczema, show increased lymphocyte reactivity in vitro to inorganic mercury, nickel and other metals compared to healthy controls. The important source of mercury is dental amalgam. Replacement of amalgam in mercury-allergic subjects resulted in improvement of health in about 70% of patients. Several laboratory parameters such as mercury-specific lymphocyte responses in vitro and anti-thyroid autoantibodies were normalized as well. In contrast, no changes in health and laboratory results were observed in mercury-allergic patients who did not have their amalgams replaced. The same was true for non-allergic patients who underwent amalgam replacement. Infectious agents such as Helicobacter pylori (Hp) may cause chronic inflammation and autoimmune reactivity in susceptible subjects. The results of in vitro experiments performed with lymphocytes from Hp infected patients indicate that Hp can cause immunosuppression which might be eliminated by successful eradication therapy. In conclusion, heavy metals and Hp infection may play an important role in AT. Laboratory tests, such as LTT-MELISA, can help to determine the specific etiological agents causing inflammation in individual patients. The treatment of AT and other autoimmune diseases might be improved if such agents are eliminated and any future exposure restricted. PMID:20588228

  12. Postnatal depression among women availing maternal health services in a rural hospital in South India

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Avita Rose; Edwin, Serin; Joachim, Nayanthara; Mathew, Geethu; Ajay, Shwetha; Joseph, Bobby

    2015-01-01

    Background and Objective: Postnatal depression, with an estimated prevalence of 13-19%, causes significant impairment of mental health among women worldwide and has long term consequences. However, more than half of all cases are not detected by healthcare providers. Screening for postnatal depression has not been given importance in maternal health programs in India. Our objective was to screen for postnatal depression among women attending a rural hospital in India, immediately postpartum and at 6-8 weeks post-delivery, and to study associated factors. Methods: A cross sectional study was done on 123 postnatal women attending a rural maternity hospital in Karnataka, South India, of whom 74 women were interviewed within one week of childbirth, and 49 women at 6-8 weeks post-delivery. The Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale was used to screen for postnatal depression. Results: About 45.5% of the women screened positive for postnatal depression (44.6% of all subjects within one week of delivery and 46.9% at 6-8 weeks after delivery). Postnatal depression was significantly associated with mood swings during antenatal period, staying with the family of birth during pregnancy and away from their husbands, and was significantly higher among women who perceived their life as stressful and having a low self-esteem (P<0.05) Conclusions: This study found a high prevalence of postnatal depression in women in rural Karnataka. This underlines the need for incorporating screening for postnatal depression in the routine care of women during pregnancy and delivery. PMID:26101501

  13. Increased risk of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) by prenatal and postnatal exposure to high voltage power lines: a case control study in Isfahan, Iran.

    PubMed

    Tabrizi, Maral Mazloomi; Bidgoli, Sepideh Arbabi

    2015-01-01

    Childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is one of the most common hematologic malignancies, accounting for one fourth of all childhood cancer cases. Exposure to environmental factors around the time of conception or pregnancy can increase the risk of ALL in the offspring.This study aimed to evaluted the role of prenatal and postnatal exposure to high voltage power lines on the incidence of childhood ALL.This cross-sectional case control study was carried out on 22 cases and 100 controls who were born and lived in low socioeconomic families in Isfahan and hospitalized for therapeutic purposes in different hospitals from 2013-2014.With regard to the underlying risk factors, familial history and parental factors were noted but in this age, socioeonomic and zonal matched case control study, prenatal and childhood exposure to high voltage power lines was considered as the most important environmental risk factors of ALL (p=0.006, OR=3.651, CI 95%, 1.692-7.878). As the population was of low socioeconomic background, use of mobiles, computers and microwave was negligible. Moreover prenatal and postnatal exposure to indoor electrically charged objects was not determined to be a significant environmental factor. Thus, pre and post natal exposure to high voltage power lines and living in pollutant regions as well as familial influence could be described as risk factors of ALL for the first time in a low socioeconomic status Iranian population. PMID:25824762

  14. The relationship between organisational factors and the effectiveness of environmental management.

    PubMed

    Tung, Amy; Baird, Kevin; Schoch, Herbert

    2014-11-01

    This paper examines the relationship between specific organisational factors (top management support, training, employee participation, teamwork and the link of performance to rewards) with the effectiveness of environmental management. The effectiveness of environmental management is measured in respect of the effectiveness of environmental management processes and environmental performance. Data were collected by mail survey questionnaire from a random sample of 899 senior financial officers in Australian manufacturing organisations. The findings highlight the significance of the effectiveness of environmental management processes as an antecedent of environmental performance and a mediator of the relationship between organisational factors and environmental performance. The findings provide managers with an insight into the specific organisational factors that they need to focus on to enhance the effectiveness of environmental management. PMID:24952341

  15. Solar Program Assessment: Environmental Factors - Fuels from Biomass.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Energy Research and Development Administration, Washington, DC. Div. of Solar Energy.

    The purpose of this report is to present and prioritize the major environmental issues associated with the further development of biomass production and biomass conversion systems. To provide a background for this environmental analysis, the basic concepts of the technology are reviewed, as are resource requirements. The potential effects of this…

  16. Solar Program Assessment: Environmental Factors - Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Energy Research and Development Administration, Washington, DC. Div. of Solar Energy.

    This report presents the environmental problems which may arise with the further development of Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion, one of the eight Federally-funded solar technologies. To provide a background for this environmental analysis, the history and basic concepts of the technology are reviewed, as are its economic and resource requirements.…

  17. Environmental factors influencing public health and medicine: policy implications.

    PubMed Central

    Warren, Rueben; Walker, Bailus; Nathan, Vincent R.

    2002-01-01

    Environmental health threats are increasing throughout the United States, particularly in low-income populations and in communities of color. Environmental science researchers are investigating plausible associations between the environment and human health. As a result, the role and responsibility of the primary care physicians and other health care providers are changing. This paper highlights selected lines of evidence suggesting that clinicians should now consider interactions between humans and their environment as central to providing effective primary care. Subject areas include: exposure to environmental agents, reproductive toxicity, pulmonary disease, neurobehavioral toxicity, endocrine disruptors, mechanisms of environmental disease, and cultural competence. Concerns about these and other environmentally related issues influence the manner in which primary care is practiced now, and will be practiced in the future. Biomedical technology and community awareness demand that physicians pay more attention to advances in environmental medicine. Ironically, one of the least taught subjects in medical school is environmental medicine. To effectively respond to growing concerns about the role of the environment in human health, clinicians, researchers, educators, public policy officials, and the general public must join together to reduce the risk of environmental health threats and improve quality of life. PMID:11995631

  18. Contribution of Spaceflight Environmental Factors to Vision Risks

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zanello, Susana B.

    2011-01-01

    The risk of visual impairment and elevated intracranial pressure as a result of low-earth orbit microgravity exposure has directed our attention and research efforts to the eye. While the alterations observed in astronauts returning from long duration missions include vision and neuroanatomical changes observed by non-invasive methods, other effects and subsequent tissue responses at the molecular and cellular level can only be studied by accessing the tissue itself. As a result of this need, several studies are currently taking place within the Human and Health Countermeasures Element (HHC) that use animal models for eye research. The rodent eye has many similarities to the human eye, and both rats and mice have historically been used as models of human eye disease, aiding in the identification of the disease genes, elucidation of mechanisms of disease, as well as in the assessment of therapeutic treatments. These studies attempt to answer two central questions in the etiology of possible vision alterations in the environment of space exploration missions. The first is: what effects and response mechanisms take place in the different eye structures at the cellular and molecular level? The second question is directed to elucidate the contribution of the various environmental stressors (radiation, nutrition, fluid shift) to these effects. Collaborative approaches with internal and external investigators have allowed performing these studies in a most cost-effective fashion, providing preliminary data and laying the bases for testing further hypotheses in future and specifically designed animal experiments. From a study centered on the radioadaptive response in mice, we have learned that the retina responds to low and high dose gamma radiation by elevating antioxidant-related genes at early time points (4hrs) and that this response returns to control levels after 1 day post-irradiation. We are expanding this research with another collaborative study that investigates the combined effects of radiation exposure and iron overload on sensitivity to radiation injury in rat eyes. All main eye structures will be analyzed in this study: retina, lens and cornea. A study in collaboration with the Space Human Factors and Habitability Element (SHFH) investigates the effects of lunar dust exposure on the rat cornea. It is anticipated that common underlying oxidative stress mechanisms of damage may be observed as a result of these three stressors: radiation, nutritional iron and lunar dust. The contribution of fluid shift is addressed by a study using rats subjected to hindlimb suspension. The hypothesis to be tested in this study is that the mechanical stress imparted by the pressure differential across the optic disc and lamina cribosa will impact oxygenation (therefore causing oxidative stress and hypoxia) and cell survival. This study also includes the assessment of two nutritional antioxidant countermeasures: epigallocatechin gallate (green tea) and resveratrol. Finally, as a result of two successful tissue sharing efforts, we are proceeding with the analysis of eye samples of mice aboard two shuttle missions: STS-133 and STS-135. Results from the STS-133 study are presented in an independent abstract. Briefly, the results show that spaceflight represents a source of environmental stress that directly translates into oxidative and cellular stress in the retina. Similar analysis is also planned for the cornea. These samples add large value to our current vision research as they provide data on the direct effects of low-earth orbit spaceflight on eye structures and physiology.

  19. Prenatal and Postnatal Epigenetic Programming: Implications for GI, Immune, and Neuronal Function in Autism

    PubMed Central

    Waly, Mostafa I.; Hornig, Mady; Trivedi, Malav; Hodgson, Nathaniel; Kini, Radhika; Ohta, Akio; Deth, Richard

    2012-01-01

    Although autism is first and foremost a disorder of the central nervous system, comorbid dysfunction of the gastrointestinal (GI) and immune systems is common, suggesting that all three systems may be affected by common molecular mechanisms. Substantial systemic deficits in the antioxidant glutathione and its precursor, cysteine, have been documented in autism in association with oxidative stress and impaired methylation. DNA and histone methylation provide epigenetic regulation of gene expression during prenatal and postnatal development. Prenatal epigenetic programming (PrEP) can be affected by the maternal metabolic and nutritional environment, whereas postnatal epigenetic programming (PEP) importantly depends upon nutritional support provided through the GI tract. Cysteine absorption from the GI tract is a crucial determinant of antioxidant capacity, and systemic deficits of glutathione and cysteine in autism are likely to reflect impaired cysteine absorption. Excitatory amino acid transporter 3 (EAAT3) provides cysteine uptake for GI epithelial, neuronal, and immune cells, and its activity is decreased during oxidative stress. Based upon these observations, we propose that neurodevelopmental, GI, and immune aspects of autism each reflect manifestations of inadequate antioxidant capacity, secondary to impaired cysteine uptake by the GI tract. Genetic and environmental factors that adversely affect antioxidant capacity can disrupt PrEP and/or PEP, increasing vulnerability to autism. PMID:22934169

  20. Dacryocystocele on prenatal ultrasonography: diagnosis and postnatal outcomes

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: To report the incidence of dacryocystoceles detected by prenatal ultrasonography (US) and their postnatal outcomes and to determine the factors associated with the postnatal persistence of dacryocystoceles at birth. Methods: We retrospectively reviewed the prenatal US database at our institution for the period between January 2012 and December 2013. The medical records of women who had fetuses diagnosed with dacryocystocel larger than 5 mm were reviewed for maternal age, gestational age (GA) at detection, size and side of the dacryocystoceles, delivery, and postnatal information, such as GA at delivery, delivery mode, and gender of the neonate. Results: A total of 49 singletons were diagnosed with a dacryocystocele on prenatal US, yielding an overall incidence of 0.43%. The incidence of dacryocystoceles was the highest at the GA of 27 weeks and decreased toward term. Of the 49 fetuses including three of undeter mined gender, 25 (54%) were female. The mean GA at first detection was 31.2 weeks. The dacryocystocele was unilateral in 29 cases, with a mean maximum diameter of 7 mm. Spontaneous resolution at birth was documented in 35 out of 46 neonates (76%), including six with prenatal resolution. Multivariate analysis demonstrated that GA at delivery was a significant predictor of the postnatal persistence of dacryocystoceles (P=0.045). Conclusion: The overall incidence of prenatal dacryocystoceles was 0.43%; the incidence was higher in the early third trimester and decreased thereafter. Prenatal dacryocystoceles resolved in 76% of the patients at birth, and the GA at delivery was a significant predictor of postnatal persistence. PMID:25475649

  1. Environmental Factors Affecting the Permanence of Library Materials

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wessel, Carl J.

    1970-01-01

    Reviews pertinent evidence relating to deterioration originating with air pollution, heat, humidity, light, and biological agents; and suggests how librarians may lengthen the useful life of library materials through environmental controls. (Author/JS)

  2. Epidemiological studies of migration and environmental risk factors in the inflammatory bowel diseases

    PubMed Central

    Ko, Yanna; Butcher, Rhys; Leong, Rupert W

    2014-01-01

    Inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) are idiopathic chronic diseases of the gastrointestinal tract well known to be associated with both genetic and environmental risk factors. Permissive genotypes may manifest into clinical phenotypes under certain environmental influences and these may be best studied from migratory studies. Exploring differences between first and second generation migrants may further highlight the contribution of environmental factors towards the development of IBD. There are few opportunities that have been offered so far. We aim to review the available migration studies on IBD, evaluate the known environmental factors associated with IBD, and explore modern migration patterns to identify new opportunities and candidate migrant groups in IBD migration research. PMID:24574798

  3. Update on Environmental Risk Factors for Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Anixt, Julia S.; Loe, Irene M.; Chirdkiatgumchai, Vilawan; Kuan, Lisa; Gilman, Richard C.

    2012-01-01

    Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a prevalent neurobehavioral disorder affecting 5% to 10% of children. Although considered to be a highly familial disorder, ADHD heritability estimates of 60% to 80% highlight the considerable role that environmental factors may still play in disorder susceptibility. Proposed ADHD environmental risk factors include prenatal substance exposures, heavy metal and chemical exposures, nutritional factors, and lifestyle/psychosocial factors. This paper reviews the literature published in 2010 investigating the association between environmental risk factors and ADHD or related symptomatology. Sources of risk factor exposure and the proposed mechanism by which each exposure is linked to ADHD-related neurobehavioral changes are also reported. Methodologic limitations of the current literature are discussed, and guidelines for future study are proposed. An improved understanding of the role that environmental factors play in ADHD etiology is critical to future ADHD prevention efforts. PMID:21779823

  4. HIV Testing among Adolescents in Ndola, Zambia: How Individual, Relational, and Environmental Factors Relate to Demand

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Denison, Julie A.; McCauley, Ann P.; Dunnett-Dagg, Wendy A.; Lungu, Nalakwanji; Sweat, Michael D.

    2009-01-01

    This study examined how individual, relational and environmental factors related to adolescent demand for HIV voluntary counseling and testing (VCT). A cross-sectional survey among randomly selected 16-19-year-olds in Ndola, Zambia, covered individual (e.g., HIV knowledge), environmental (e.g., distance), and relational factors (e.g., discussed

  5. [Relationships between soil organic carbon and environmental factors in gully watershed of the Loess Plateau].

    PubMed

    Wei, Xiao-Rong; Shao, Ming-An; Gao, Jian-Lun

    2008-10-01

    Understanding the distribution of organic carbon fractions in soils and their relationships with environmental factors are very important for appraising soil organic carbon status and assessing carbon cycling in the Loess Plateau. In this research, through field investigation and laboratory analysis, we studied the relationships between soil organic carbon and environmental factors in a gully watershed of the Loess Plateau. The environmental factors are landforms, land use conditions and soil types. The results showed that total soil organic carbon presented less variance, while high labile organic carbon presented greater variance. The variation coefficients of them are 34% and 43%, respectively, indicating that the variability of organic carbon in soils increased with the increasing of their activities. Total soil organic carbon, labile organic carbon, middle and high labile organic carbon were highly interrelated and presented similar distribution trend with environmental factors. Among different landforms, land uses, and soil types, the highest contents of organic carbon in different fractions were observed in plateau land, forest and farm lands, and black loessial soils, while the lowest contents of them were observed in gully bottom, grass land, and rubified soils, respectively. The relationships between organic carbon and environmental factors indicate that environmental factors not only directly influence the distribution of soil organic carbon, but also indirectly influence them through affecting the relationships among organic carbon fractions. The relationship between total organic carbon and labile organic carbon responses rapidly to environmental factors, while that between middle labile organic carbon and high labile organic carbon responses slowly to environmental factors. PMID:19143389

  6. HIV Testing among Adolescents in Ndola, Zambia: How Individual, Relational, and Environmental Factors Relate to Demand

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Denison, Julie A.; McCauley, Ann P.; Dunnett-Dagg, Wendy A.; Lungu, Nalakwanji; Sweat, Michael D.

    2009-01-01

    This study examined how individual, relational and environmental factors related to adolescent demand for HIV voluntary counseling and testing (VCT). A cross-sectional survey among randomly selected 16-19-year-olds in Ndola, Zambia, covered individual (e.g., HIV knowledge), environmental (e.g., distance), and relational factors (e.g., discussed…

  7. A Report on the Effects of Environmental and Institutional Factors on College and University Enrollments.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Krakower, Jack Y.; Zammuto, Raymond F.

    The effects of five environmental and five institutional factors on college and university enrollments during the period between 1975-1976 and 1980-1981 were studied with a sample of 2,101 institutions. The environmental factors were federal student aid, state student aid, number of 18-year-olds, unemployment, and level of economic wealth as…

  8. The Relationship between Environmental Factors and State Appropriations to Public Universities. ASHE 1988 Annual Meeting Paper.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Layzell, Daniel T.; Lyddon, Jan W.

    The relationship between the external environment and state appropriations to public higher education is analyzed, focusing on the following: (1) the extent to which environmental factors explain yearly appropriations outcomes for public four-year colleges and universities; (2) which environmental factors are most important and which are least…

  9. Adolescent illegal drug use: the impact of personality, family, and environmental factors.

    PubMed

    Brook, J S; Brook, D W; De La Rosa, M; Whiteman, M; Johnson, E; Montoya, I

    2001-04-01

    This study examined the relationship between the domains of environmental factors, family illegal drug use, parental child-rearing practices, maternal and adolescent personality attributes, and adolescent illegal drug use. A nonclinical sample of 2,837 Colombian youths and their mothers were interviewed about intrapersonal, interpersonal, and environmental factors in their lives. Results indicated that certain environmental factors (e.g., violence, drug availability, and machismo), family drug use, a distant parent-child relationship, and unconventional behavior are risk factors for adolescent illegal drug use. As hypothesized, results showed that the adverse effects of family illegal drug use on adolescent drug use can be buffered by protective parental child-rearing practices and environmental factors, leading to less adolescent illegal drug use. Prevention and treatment efforts should incorporate protective environmental, familial, and intrapersonal components in order to reduce adolescent illegal drug use. PMID:11392919

  10. Common Genetic and Nonshared Environmental Factors Contribute to the Association between Socioemotional Dispositions and the Externalizing Factor in Children

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Taylor, Jeanette; Allan, Nicholas; Mikolajewski, Amy J.; Hart, Sara A.

    2013-01-01

    Background: Childhood behavioral disorders including conduct disorder (CD), oppositional defiant disorder (ODD), and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) often co-occur. Prior twin research shows that common sets of genetic and environmental factors are associated with these various disorders and they form a latent factor called…

  11. Staffing in postnatal units: is it adequate for the provision of quality care? Staff perspectives from a state-wide review of postnatal care in Victoria, Australia

    PubMed Central

    Forster, Della A; McLachlan, Helen L; Yelland, Jane; Rayner, Jo; Lumley, Judith; Davey, Mary-Ann

    2006-01-01

    Background State-wide surveys of recent mothers conducted over the past decade in Victoria, one state of Australia, have identified that women are consistently less satisfied with the care they received in hospital following birth compared with other aspects of maternity care. Little is known of caregivers' perspectives on the provision ofhospital postnatal care: how care is organised and provided in different hospitals; what constrains the provision of postnatal care (apart from funding) and what initiatives are being undertaken to improve service delivery. A state-widereview of organisational structures and processes in relation to the provision of hospital postnatal care in Victoria was undertaken. This paper focuses on the impact of staffing issues on the provision of quality postnatal care from the perspective of care providers. Methods A study of care providers from Victorian public hospitals that provide maternity services was undertaken. Datawere collected in two stages. Stage one: a structured questionnaire was sent to all public hospitals in Victoria that provided postnatal care (n = 73), exploring the structure and organisation of care (e.g. staffing, routine observations, policy framework and discharge planning). Stage two: 14 maternity units were selected and invited to participate in a more in-depth exploration of postnatal care. Thirty-eight key informant interviews were undertaken with midwives (including unit managers, associate unit managers and clinical midwives) and a medical practitioner from eachselected hospital. Results Staffing was highlighted as a major factor impacting on the provision of quality postnatal care. There were significant issues associated with inadequate staff/patient ratios; staffing mix; patient mix; prioritisation of birth suites over postnatal units; and the use of non-permanent staff. Forty-three percent of hospitals reported having only midwives (i.e. no non-midwives) providing postnatal care. Staffing issues impact on hospitals' ability to provide continuity of care. Recruitment and retention of midwives are significant issues, particularly in rural areas. Conclusion Staffing in postnatal wards is a challenging issue, and varies with hospital locality and model of care. Staff/patient ratios and recruitment of midwives in rural areas are the two areas that appear to have the greatest negative impact on staffing adequacy and provision of quality care. Future research on postnatal care provision should include consideration of any impact on staff and staffing. PMID:16817974

  12. Environmental Linguistics: A Typology of Visual Factors in Shopping Malls.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Woods, John D.; Sewell, Edward H., Jr.

    Environment may be regarded as a form of communication, with environmental linguistics becoming a new discipline that will have to be explored. Its goal is to demystify some of the constructs that contribute to the built environment as a communication tool. Treating the built environment as a language requires a recognition of its dynamic nature.…

  13. Social and Environmental Factors Associated with Preschoolers' Nonsedentary Physical Activity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, William H.; Pfeiffer, Karin A.; McIver, Kerry L.; Dowda, Marsha; Addy, Cheryl L.; Pate, Russell R.

    2009-01-01

    The twofold purposes of the investigation were (a) to describe with direct observation data the physical activity behaviors and the accompanying social and environmental events of those behaviors for children in preschools and (b) to determine which contextual conditions were predictors of moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) and…

  14. Solar Program Assessment: Environmental Factors - Solar Total Energy Systems.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Energy Research and Development Administration, Washington, DC. Div. of Solar Energy.

    The purpose of this report is to present and prioritize the major environmental, safety, and social/institutional issues associated with the further development of Solar Total Energy Systems (STES). Solar total energy systems represent a specific application of the Federally-funded solar technologies. To provide a background for this analysis, the…

  15. Genetic and Environmental Factors in Age-Related Hearing Impairment.

    PubMed

    Momi, Sukhleen K; Wolber, Lisa E; Fabiane, Stella Maris; MacGregor, Alex J; Williams, Frances M K

    2015-08-01

    Age-related hearing impairment (ARHI) is a common condition with complex etiology but a recognized genetic component. Heritability estimates for pure tone audiogram-determined hearing ability lie in the range 26-75%. The speech-in-noise (SIN) auditory test, however, may be better at encapsulating ARHI symptoms, particularly the diminished ability to segregate environmental sounds into comprehendible auditory streams. As heritability of SIN has not previously been reported, we explored the genetic and environmental contributions to ARHI determined by SIN in 2,076 twins (87.8% female) aged 18-87 (mean age 54.4). SIN was found to be significantly heritable (A, unadjusted for age=40%; 95% confidence intervals, CI=32%-47%). With age adjustment, heritability fell (A=25%; 95% CI=16-33%), and a relatively strong influence of environmental exposure unshared within twin siblings was identified (E=75%). To explore the environmental aspects further, we assessed the influence of diet (through the Food Frequency Questionnaire, FFQ), smoking (through self-report and cotinine metabolite levels) and alcohol intake (through the FFQ). A negative influence of high cholesterol diet was observed after adjustment (p=.037). A protective effect of raised serum high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol levels was observed after adjustment (p=.004). This study is the first assessment of the genetic and environmental influence on SIN perception. The findings suggest SIN is less heritable than pure tone audiogram (PTA) ability and highly influenced by the environment unique to each twin. Furthermore, a possible role of dietary fat in the etiology of ARHI is highlighted. PMID:26081266

  16. Paradoxical effects of D-amphetamine in infant and adolescent mice: role of gender and environmental risk factors.

    PubMed

    Cirulli, F; Laviola, G

    2000-01-01

    The psychostimulant D-amphetamine (AMPH) increases generalised activity in adult subjects, while exerting a paradoxical "calming effect" in children with Attention-deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (AD/HD). A number of animal models have been developed to characterise the neurobiological basis of this AMPH action. In this line, the present review summarises recent work on the effects of AMPH on behavioural and physiological parameters in developing mice with a special emphasis on the role of gender and environmental risk factors. Behavioural and neuroendocrine responses to AMPH administration (0, 1, or 3 mg/kg, IP) and their relation to changes in the environment, represented by social stimuli, were studied in infant CD-1 mouse pups of both sexes at three different developmental ages (3, 8, or 18 postnatal (pnd) days). Mouse pups were assessed either in baseline condition or following 24 h maternal deprivation. AMPH exerted a paradoxical effect on CORT secretion only in maternally deprived subjects while affecting behaviour mainly in deprived female subjects, which showed a generalised shift to the left in the dose-response curve to this drug. Unwanted perseverative motor effects and possible dependence states represent side effects of AMPH administration. Further knowledge on these aspects comes from another set of studies where a shortened conditioned place preference (CPP) paradigm was employed to assess the reinforcing properties of AMPH (0, 1, 3.3, or 10 mg/kg) in developing mice on 14-17, 21-24, and 28-31 pnd. Data indicate that AMPH-CPP develops early, mice being able, already at two weeks of age, to acquire a place preference that relies on adult-like sensory, motor, and associative capacities. AMPH-CPP appears earlier in females, compared to males. A detailed analysis of acute D-amphetamine effects evidenced that the drug produces a dose-dependent increase in locomotor activity and in several responses (including stereotypes). These effects appear much larger at both post weaning stages than in preweanlings and are significantly more pronounced in females than in males. Overall these data suggest that AMPH action is dependent on the baseline level of activity and indicate a strong role of gender in the effects of this drug measured early on during development, with females showing greater sensitivity to this drug. A better understanding of AMPH action during the early ontogenetic phases, particularly its interaction with environmental factors, might extend our knowledge on the neurobiological basis of AD/HD, possibly improving the clinical efficacy of psychostimulant drugs. PMID:10654663

  17. Influence of environmental factors on the onset and course of inflammatory bowel disease

    PubMed Central

    Dutta, Amit Kumar; Chacko, Ashok

    2016-01-01

    Numerous environmental factors have been linked with inflammatory bowel disease. These include smoking, diet, hygiene, drugs, geographical and psychosocial factors. These factors may either increase the risk of or protect against developing this condition and can also affect the course of illness in a positive or negative manner. A number of studies have examined the influence of environmental factors on inflammatory bowel diseases as a whole as well as on ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease separately. As there are differences in the pathogenesis of ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease, the effect of environmental factors on their onset and course is not always similar. Some factors have shown a consistent association, while reports on others have been conflicting. In this article we discuss the current evidence on the roles of these factors on inflammatory bowel disease, both as causative/protective agents and as modifiers of disease course. PMID:26811649

  18. Influence of environmental factors on the onset and course of inflammatory bowel disease.

    PubMed

    Dutta, Amit Kumar; Chacko, Ashok

    2016-01-21

    Numerous environmental factors have been linked with inflammatory bowel disease. These include smoking, diet, hygiene, drugs, geographical and psychosocial factors. These factors may either increase the risk of or protect against developing this condition and can also affect the course of illness in a positive or negative manner. A number of studies have examined the influence of environmental factors on inflammatory bowel diseases as a whole as well as on ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease separately. As there are differences in the pathogenesis of ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease, the effect of environmental factors on their onset and course is not always similar. Some factors have shown a consistent association, while reports on others have been conflicting. In this article we discuss the current evidence on the roles of these factors on inflammatory bowel disease, both as causative/protective agents and as modifiers of disease course. PMID:26811649

  19. Etiology of obsessions and compulsions: General and specific genetic and environmental factors.

    PubMed

    Taylor, Steven; Asmundson, Gordon J G; Jang, Kerry L

    2016-03-30

    Evidence suggests that a general etiologic factor plays a role in many forms of psychopathology, possibly including obsessive-compulsive (OC) symptoms. A twin study (N=307 twin pairs) of OC symptoms and their endophenotypes was conducted to investigate the role of general and symptom-specific etiologic factors. OC symptoms and endophenotypes were found to have complex etiologies, being shaped by OC-specific genetic and environmental factors, and by genetic and environmental factors that shape psychopathology in general. Understanding the general and specific etiologies underlying OC symptoms has implications for improving treatments outcomes through the development of therapies that target general and/or specific factors. PMID:26921046

  20. Genetic and environmental factors affecting host response to drugs and other chemical compounds in our environment.

    PubMed Central

    Vesell, E S; Passananti, G T

    1977-01-01

    Compared to laboratory animals, humans are extremely heterogenous with respect to the many factors that can influence the distribution and biological effects of toxic chemicals. This heterogeneity can prevent an accurate assessment of the impact of a particular toxic compound on the health of an individual subject. Some of the factors that can significantly modify the host response to certain drugs, which serve in this review as a model for environmental chemicals, are enumerated and discussed. Although the mechanisms by which many of these factors modify the biological effects of certain environmental chemicals and drugs have been determined in some cases, better definition of the nature of interactions between these factors and environmental chemicals in a particular individual is required at a biochemical and molecular level. Recommendations are offered for the further development of our knowledge concerning interactions between environmental chemicals and such factors in a particular individual. PMID:598349

  1. Prenatal Diagnosis and Postnatal Outcome of Schizencephaly.

    PubMed

    Kutuk, Mehmet Serdar; Gorkem, Sureyya Burcu; Bayram, Ayse; Doganay, Selim; Canpolat, Mehmet; Basbug, Mustafa

    2015-09-01

    The aim of this study was to present our experience with 5 cases of fetal schizencephaly in terms of prenatal diagnostic features, and postnatal outcome. The database of prenatal diagnosis unit was searched for antenatally diagnosed cases with schizencephaly. Maternal characteristics, ultrasonography, prenatal-postnatal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) findings, and postnatal outcome were noted. Of 5 cases, 2 had definitive prenatal diagnoses on ultrasound and 3 cases were diagnosed by fetal MRI. All cases had cerebral cortical migration anomalies including polymicrogyria, subependymal heterotopia, and lissencephaly, and 2 cases had additional extracranial malformations. Three cases showed regression of the cerebral clefts on follow-up postnatal MRIs. Three cases had moderate to severe psychomotor retardation, and 1 case needed repeated ventriculoperitoneal shunt operation due to hydrocephaly. Prenatal diagnosis of schizencephaly with ultrasonography is not straightforward and required further evaluation with fetal MRI. Additional cerebral anomalies worsen the prognosis of schizencephaly. PMID:25535059

  2. Prevention and treatment of postnatal depression.

    PubMed

    Chabrol, Henri; Callahan, Stacey

    2007-05-01

    Postnatal depression is a common condition that may have a significant negative impact on both infant and mother, often remaining undiagnosed and untreated. Development of effective means of detection, prevention and treatment of postnatal depression is a major health challenge. The objective of this article is to critically review pharmacological, psychological and psychosocial approaches of prevention and treatment for postnatal depression. There is little evidence of short-term success for preventive interventions and some evidence of short-term success for treatment interventions. No preventive or therapeutic studies, however, have provided evidence for long-term success. There is a need for future research into the prevention and treatment of postnatal depression including the assessment of long-term effects on the child's development as well as feasibility in relation to cost-effectiveness. PMID:17492905

  3. Is Hypovitaminosis D One of the Environmental Risk Factors for Multiple Sclerosis?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pierrot-Deseilligny, Charles; Souberbielle, Jean-Claude

    2010-01-01

    The role of hypovitaminosis D as a possible risk factor for multiple sclerosis is reviewed. First, it is emphasized that hypovitaminosis D could be only one of the risk factors for multiple sclerosis and that numerous other environmental and genetic risk factors appear to interact and combine to trigger the disease. Secondly, the classical…

  4. Is Hypovitaminosis D One of the Environmental Risk Factors for Multiple Sclerosis?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pierrot-Deseilligny, Charles; Souberbielle, Jean-Claude

    2010-01-01

    The role of hypovitaminosis D as a possible risk factor for multiple sclerosis is reviewed. First, it is emphasized that hypovitaminosis D could be only one of the risk factors for multiple sclerosis and that numerous other environmental and genetic risk factors appear to interact and combine to trigger the disease. Secondly, the classical

  5. Environmental factors and the development of disease and injury in the alimentary tract.

    PubMed Central

    Schedl, H P

    1977-01-01

    This review examines interactions between the alimentary tract and environmental agents. In these intera"ctions the alimentary tract is considered as an integrated organ system extending from mouth to anus. The alimentary tract shares with the skin and its appendages and the respiratory system the distinction of being a portal of entry into the human body for environmental agents as well as a target for their action. Food and water-borne environmental agents enter the body via the alimentary tract. By injurying the alimentary tract environmental agents after their portal of entry and thereby modulate their effects on the organism. Such modulation may enhance or depress effects of these agents. Interactions between environmental factors and the alimentary tract depend on (1) factors related to the alimentary tract that are determined by anatomic, physiologic, and biochemical considerations; (2) factors related to the environmental agents; and (3) individually determined factors. The role of these factors in development of disease and injury is considered. Environmental diseases of the alimentary tract and environmental agents acting on the gut are discussed and recommendations are made for future research. PMID:598351

  6. Social Environmental Stressors, Psychological Factors, and Kidney Disease

    PubMed Central

    Bruce, Marino A.; Beech, Bettina M.; Sims, Mario; Brown, Tony N.; Wyatt, Sharon B.; Taylor, Herman A.; Williams, David R.; Crook, Errol

    2010-01-01

    Kidney disease is one of the most striking examples of health disparities in American public health. Disparities in the prevalence and progression of kidney disease are generally thought to be a function of group differences in the prevalence of kidney disease risk factors such as diabetes, hypertension, and obesity. However, the presence of these comorbidities does not completely explain the elevated rate of progression from chronic kidney disease (CKD) to end-stage renal disease among high-risk populations such as African Americans. We believe that the social environment is an important element in the pathway from CKD risk factors to CKD and end-stage renal disease. This review of the literature draws heavily from social science and social epidemiology to present a conceptual frame specifying how social, economic, and psychosocial factors interact to affect the risks for and the progression of kidney disease. PMID:19240646

  7. The influence of personal and environmental factors on professionalism in medical education

    PubMed Central

    West, Colin P; Shanafelt, Tait D

    2007-01-01

    Background Professionalism is a critical quality for physicians to possess. Physician professionalism has received increased attention in recent years, with many authorities suggesting that professionalism is in decline. An understanding of the factors contributing to professionalism may allow the development of more effective approaches to promoting this quality in medical education. Discussion We propose a model of personal and environmental factors that contribute to physician professionalism. Personal factors include distress/well-being, individual characteristics, and interpersonal qualities. Environmental factors include institutional culture, formal and informal curricula, and practice characteristics. Promotion of professionalism requires efforts directed at each of these elements. Summary One responsibility of medical education is to foster the development of professionalism among its learners. Both personal and environmental factors play a role in physician professionalism. Accordingly, institutions should consider these factors as efforts to promote physician professionalism evolve. PMID:17760986

  8. The effects of community environmental factors on obesity among Korean adults: a multilevel analysis

    PubMed Central

    Yoon, Nan-He; Kwon, Soonman

    2014-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: This study explored multidimensional factors related to obesity by dividing them into individual and environmental factors, and performed multilevel analysis to investigate community environmental effects. METHODS: Data from the 2011 and 2012 Community Health Surveys were used for the analysis. Community-level variables, constructed from various regional statistics, were included in the model as environmental factors. Respondents with body mass index (BMI)≥25 were defined as obese, and a multilevel logistic regression analysis was conducted to analyze individual and environmental factors related to obesity. Moreover, a stratified analysis was conducted to compare factors related to obesity between men and women. RESULTS: Of 337,136 samples, 82,887 (24.6%) were obese, with BMI≥25. Sociodemographic characteristics at the individual level were mostly significantly related to obesity; however, while there were more obese men subjects among those with high socioeconomic status, there were more obese women among those with low socioeconomic status. There were fewer obese respondents among those who regularly walked and more obese respondents among those who reported short sleep duration or were highly stressed. At the community level, people living in areas with high socioeconomic status, high satisfaction with safety and public transportation, and high accessibility to sports facilities in their community had lower obesity risks. CONCLUSIONS: Community-level environmental factors affected obesity, especially perceived community environment, more significant than physical environment. Thus, it is necessary to develop effective obesity prevention and management strategies by considering potential community environmental factors that affect obesity. PMID:25666167

  9. DISPERSANT EFFECTIVENESS ON OIL SPILLS - IMPACT OF ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS

    EPA Science Inventory

    When a dispersant is applied to an oil slick, its effectiveness in dispersing the spilled oil depends on various factors such as oil properties, wave mixing energy, temperature of both oil and water, and salinity of the water. Estuaries represent water with varying salinities. In...

  10. Factors Affecting Environmental Knowledge and Attitudes among Lebanese College Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oweini, Ahmad; Houri, Ahmad

    2006-01-01

    This exploratory study aimed at assessing the variables that would positively affect the knowledge and attitude of a group of Lebanese college students regarding the environment, namely such factors as gender, age, previous hiking experience and living abroad. A purposeful sample of students attending the Lebanese American University, was asked to…

  11. Factors Affecting Use of Environmental Services by the Elderly.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hartwigsen, Gail

    The ability to function independently in the later years has been defined as a combination of capability and support. To examine factors affecting older adults' use of services provided in an accommodating environment, 52 physically independent residents of an Arizona apartment complex for the elderly were surveyed. Time spent living in the…

  12. Investigating the Influence of Environmental Factors on Pesticide Exposure in Amphibians

    EPA Science Inventory

    Environmental factors such as temporal weather patterns and soil characterization coupled with pesticide application rates are known to influence exposure and subsequent absorption of these compounds in amphibians. Amphibians are a unique class of vertebrates due to their varied ...

  13. Importance of environmental factors on the richness and distribution of benthic macroinvertebrates in tropical headwater streams

    EPA Science Inventory

    It is essential to understand the interactions between local environmental factors (e.g., physical habitat and water quality) and aquatic assemblages to conserve biodiversity in tropical and subtropical headwater streams. Therefore, we evaluated the relative importance of multipl...

  14. [Environmental factors as supportive components in communication and care for hospitalized elderly].

    PubMed

    Prochet, Teresa Cristina; da Silva, Maria Julia Paes

    2012-01-01

    This exploratory work with a qualitative approach was performed with 117 health professionals and undergraduate students in So Paulo State countryside. The goal was to identify environmental factors that could play a role in health professionals' communication with elderly patients. The findings were organized and grouped in seven categories: sound and vibration factors, decorative and spatial factors, light factors, colors and textures, heat and ventilation factors, hygiene and personal safety factors, and visual signs. It was found that making use of environmental factors while providing care services to the elderly may lead to effective health care. These factors not only interfere with patients' welfare and recovery, but also play a role in the relationship between health professionals and elderly patients. PMID:23032341

  15. Involvement of {gamma}-secretase in postnatal angiogenesis

    SciTech Connect

    Hayashi, Hiroki; Nakagami, Hironori Takami, Yoichi; Sato, Naoyuki; Saito, Yukihiro; Nishikawa, Tomoyuki; Mori, Masaki; Koriyama, Hiroshi; Tamai, Katsuto; Morishita, Ryuichi; Kaneda, Yasufumi

    2007-11-23

    {gamma}-Secretase cleaves the transmembrane domains of several integral membrane proteins involved in vasculogenesis. Here, we investigated the role of {gamma}-secretase in the regulation of postnatal angiogenesis using {gamma}-secretase inhibitors (GSI). In endothelial cell (EC), {gamma}-secretase activity was up-regulated under hypoxia or the treatment of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). The treatment of GSI significantly attenuated growth factor-induced EC proliferation and migration as well as c-fos promoter activity in a dose-dependent manner. In vascular smooth muscle cell (VSMC), treatment of GSI significantly attenuated growth factor-induced VEGF and fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) expression. Indeed, GSI attenuated VEGF-induced tube formation and inhibited FGF-2-induced angiogenesis on matrigel in mice as quantified by FITC-lectin staining of EC. Overall, we demonstrated that {gamma}-secretase may be key molecule in postnatal angiogenesis which may be downstream molecule of growth factor-induced growth and migration in EC, and regulate the expression of angiogenic growth factors in VSMC.

  16. Loss of Runx2 in Committed Osteoblasts Impairs Postnatal Skeletogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Adhami, Mitra D.; Rashid, Harunur; Chen, Haiyan; Clarke, John C.; Yang, Yang; Javed, Amjad

    2014-01-01

    The Runx2 transcription factor is critical for commitment to the osteoblast lineage. However, its role in committed osteoblasts and its functions during postnatal skeletogenesis remain unclear. We established a Runx2-floxed line with insertion of loxP sites around exon 8 of the Runx2 gene. Runx2 protein lacking the region encoded by exon 8 is imported into the nucleus and binds target DNA, but exhibits diminished transcriptional activity. We specifically deleted the Runx2 gene in committed osteoblasts using 2.3kb col1a-Cre transgenic mice. Surprisingly, the homozygous Runx2 mutant mice were born alive. The Runx2 heterozygous and homozygous null were grossly indistinguishable from wild-type littermates at birth. Runx2 deficiency did not alter proliferative capacity of osteoblasts during embryonic development (E18). Chondrocyte differentiation and cartilage growth in mutants was similar to wild-type mice from birth to 3 months of age. Analysis of the embryonic skeleton revealed poor calcification in homozygous mutants, which was more evident in bones formed by intramembranous ossification. Runx2 mutants showed progressive retardation in postnatal growth and exhibited significantly low bone mass by 1 month of age. Decreased bone formation was associated with decreased gene expression of osteoblast markers and impaired collagen assembly in the extracellular matrix. Consequently, Runx2 mutant bones exhibited decreased stiffness and structural integrity. By 3 months of age, bone acquisition in mutant mice was roughly half that of wild-type littermates. In addition to impaired osteoblast function, mutant mice showed markedly decreased osteoclast number and postnatal bone resorption. Taken together, functional deficiency of Runx2 in osteoblasts does not result in failed embryonic skeletogenesis, but disrupts postnatal bone formation. PMID:25079226

  17. Diversity and Equity in Environmental Organizations: The Salience of These Factors to Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Taylor, Dorceta E.

    2007-01-01

    Diversity in environmental institutions is of increasing concern to scholars and practitioners. The author examined student perceptions of the importance of 20 diversity and equity factors in their decisions to accept a job. A national sample of 1,239 students in 9 environmental disciplines (biological sciences, geosciences, natural resources,…

  18. 7 CFR 799.9 - Ensuring that environmental factors are considered in agency decisionmaking.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... environmental factors are considered in agency decisionmaking. (a) The NEPA regulations at 40 CFR 1501.1 contain... environment impacts on the human environment are: (1) Legislative proposals. (2) Initial program... quality of the human environment. Where a legislative EIS or environmental assessment is part of...

  19. Physical and biological factors influencing environmental sources of fecal indicator bacteria in surface water

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Whitman, Richard L.; Nevers, Meredith B.; Przybyla-Kelly, Katarzyna; Byappanahalli, Muruleedhara N.

    2011-01-01

    This paper describes the environmental populations of faecal indicator bacteria, and the processes by which these populations become nonpoint sources and influence nearshore water quality. The different possible sources of these indicator bacteria are presented. These include groundwater, springs and seeps, aquatic sediments, beach sand, birds, Cladophora and plant wrack. Also discussed are the environmental factors (moisture, sunlight, temperature and salinity) influencing their survival.

  20. Diversity and Equity in Environmental Organizations: The Salience of These Factors to Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Taylor, Dorceta E.

    2007-01-01

    Diversity in environmental institutions is of increasing concern to scholars and practitioners. The author examined student perceptions of the importance of 20 diversity and equity factors in their decisions to accept a job. A national sample of 1,239 students in 9 environmental disciplines (biological sciences, geosciences, natural resources,

  1. 7 CFR 799.9 - Ensuring that environmental factors are considered in agency decisionmaking.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... environmental factors are considered in agency decisionmaking. (a) The NEPA regulations at 40 CFR 1501.1 contain... environment impacts on the human environment are: (1) Legislative proposals. (2) Initial program... quality of the human environment. Where a legislative EIS or environmental assessment is part of...

  2. 7 CFR 799.9 - Ensuring that environmental factors are considered in agency decisionmaking.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... environmental factors are considered in agency decisionmaking. (a) The NEPA regulations at 40 CFR 1501.1 contain... environment impacts on the human environment are: (1) Legislative proposals. (2) Initial program... quality of the human environment. Where a legislative EIS or environmental assessment is part of...

  3. 7 CFR 799.9 - Ensuring that environmental factors are considered in agency decisionmaking.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... environmental factors are considered in agency decisionmaking. (a) The NEPA regulations at 40 CFR 1501.1 contain... environment impacts on the human environment are: (1) Legislative proposals. (2) Initial program... quality of the human environment. Where a legislative EIS or environmental assessment is part of...

  4. 7 CFR 799.9 - Ensuring that environmental factors are considered in agency decisionmaking.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... environmental factors are considered in agency decisionmaking. (a) The NEPA regulations at 40 CFR 1501.1 contain... environment impacts on the human environment are: (1) Legislative proposals. (2) Initial program... quality of the human environment. Where a legislative EIS or environmental assessment is part of...

  5. META-ANALYSIS OF THE LIFE STYLE FACTORS RELEVANT TO ENVIRONMENTAL HAZARDS FOR THE AGING POPULATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    The goal of this U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) study is to characterize activity patterns, physiological changes, and environmental exposures for the aging population. Meta analysis was performed on more than 2000 reviewed articles to evaluate the lifestyle factors ...

  6. Foods, Drugs and Environmental Factors: Novel Kounis Syndrome Offenders.

    PubMed

    Kounis, Nicholas G; Giannopoulos, Sotiris; Soufras, George D; Kounis, George N; Goudevenos, John

    2015-01-01

    Kounis syndrome is hypersensitivity coronary disorder induced by various types of environmental exposures, drugs, conditions and stents. Allergic, hypersensitivity, anaphylactic and anaphylactoid reactions are associated with this syndrome. The disorder manifests as coronary spasms, acute myocardial infarction and stent thrombosis and affects the cerebral and mesenteric as well as coronary arteries. Importantly, its manifestations are broad and its etiology is continuously increasing. Recently, a variety of unusual etiologies have been reported including Anisakis simplex, scombroid syndrome, the use of Gelofusin or ultrasound contrast agents, kiwifruit, fly bites, and bee stings. Furthermore, losartan and the paradox of corticosteroid allergy have been implicated as possible causes. Although not rare, Kounis syndrome is infrequently diagnosed. Therefore, awareness of its etiology, manifestations and pathophysiology is important for providing the proper diagnosis and treatment and determining prognosis. PMID:26134186

  7. Simulating environmental and psychological acoustic factors of the operating room.

    PubMed

    Bennett, Christopher L; Dudaryk, Roman; Ayers, Andrew L; McNeer, Richard R

    2015-12-01

    In this study, an operating room simulation environment was adapted to include quadraphonic speakers, which were used to recreate a composed clinical soundscape. To assess validity of the composed soundscape, several acoustic parameters of this simulated environment were acquired in the presence of alarms only, background noise only, or both. These parameters were also measured for comparison from size-matched operating rooms at Jackson Memorial Hospital. The parameters examined included sound level, reverberation time, and predictive metrics of speech intelligibility in quiet and noise. It was found that the sound levels and acoustic parameters were comparable between the simulated environment and the actual operating rooms. The impact of the background noise on the perception of medical alarms was then examined, and was found to have little impact on the audibility of the alarms. This study is a first in kind report of a comparison between the environmental and psychological acoustical parameters of a hospital simulation environment and actual operating rooms. PMID:26723340

  8. Adolescent suicidal risk: psychological, problem solving, and environmental factors.

    PubMed

    Fremouw, W; Callahan, T; Kashden, J

    1993-01-01

    This study examined the life stress and problem-solving interactional model of suicide proposed by Clum, Patsiokas, and Luscomb (1979). Thirty-three hospitalized suicidal adolescents were compared with 21 adolescents hospitalized for other psychiatric problems and with 89 controls. The assessment battery was composed of psychological measures, problem-solving measures, and environmental and family measures. The discriminant analyses revealed that the suicide group could be discriminated from the psychiatric control group but not from the high school control group. Unexpectedly, life stresses did not contribute to the identification of current suicide risk. The results suggest the importance of assessing suicide risk at the time of admission to minimize any subsequent changes in the risk group. PMID:8475532

  9. Rule-Based Models of the Interplay between Genetic and Environmental Factors in Childhood Allergy

    PubMed Central

    Meln, Erik; Bergstrm, Anna; Torabi Moghadam, Behrooz; Pulkkinen, Ville; Acevedo, Nathalie; Orsmark Pietras, Christina; Ege, Markus; Braun-Fahrlnder, Charlotte; Riedler, Josef; Doekes, Gert; Kabesch, Michael; van Hage, Marianne; Kere, Juha; Scheynius, Annika; Sderhll, Cilla; Pershagen, Gran; Komorowski, Jan

    2013-01-01

    Both genetic and environmental factors are important for the development of allergic diseases. However, a detailed understanding of how such factors act together is lacking. To elucidate the interplay between genetic and environmental factors in allergic diseases, we used a novel bioinformatics approach that combines feature selection and machine learning. In two materials, PARSIFAL (a European cross-sectional study of 3113 children) and BAMSE (a Swedish birth-cohort including 2033 children), genetic variants as well as environmental and lifestyle factors were evaluated for their contribution to allergic phenotypes. Monte Carlo feature selection and rule based models were used to identify and rank rules describing how combinations of genetic and environmental factors affect the risk of allergic diseases. Novel interactions between genes were suggested and replicated, such as between ORMDL3 and RORA, where certain genotype combinations gave odds ratios for current asthma of 2.1 (95% CI 1.2-3.6) and 3.2 (95% CI 2.0-5.0) in the BAMSE and PARSIFAL children, respectively. Several combinations of environmental factors appeared to be important for the development of allergic disease in children. For example, use of baby formula and antibiotics early in life was associated with an odds ratio of 7.4 (95% CI 4.5-12.0) of developing asthma. Furthermore, genetic variants together with environmental factors seemed to play a role for allergic diseases, such as the use of antibiotics early in life and COL29A1 variants for asthma, and farm living and NPSR1 variants for allergic eczema. Overall, combinations of environmental and life style factors appeared more frequently in the models than combinations solely involving genes. In conclusion, a new bioinformatics approach is described for analyzing complex data, including extensive genetic and environmental information. Interactions identified with this approach could provide useful hints for further in-depth studies of etiological mechanisms and may also strengthen the basis for risk assessment and prevention. PMID:24260339

  10. Relationship between stages of smoking acquisition and environmental factors among junior high school students.

    PubMed

    Otake, Keiko; Shimai, Satoshi

    2002-02-01

    To study the relationship of stages of smoking acquisition and environmental factors, 757 Japanese junior high school students (390 boys and 367 girls) anonymously answered a questionnaire regarding the four stages of smoking acquisition (precontemplation, contemplation, preparation, and action stages) and environmental factors of smoking behavior. Analysis showed that the influence of advertising and students' interpersonal situations on smoking behavior increased from the precontemplation stage to the action stage. PMID:11898993

  11. Transgenic songbirds with suppressed or enhanced activity of CREB transcription factor

    PubMed Central

    Abe, Kentaro; Matsui, Sumiko; Watanabe, Dai

    2015-01-01

    Songbirds postnatally develop their skill to utter and to perceive a vocal signal for communication. How genetic and environmental influences act in concert to regulate the development of such skill is not fully understood. Here, we report the phenotype of transgenic songbirds with altered intrinsic activity of cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB) transcription factor. By viral vector-mediated modification of genomic DNA, we established germ line-transmitted lines of zebra finches, which exhibited enhanced or suppressed activity of CREB. Although intrinsically acquired vocalizations or their hearing ability were not affected, the transgenic birds showed reduced vocal learning quality of their own songs and impaired audio-memory formation against conspecific songs. These results thus demonstrate that appropriate activity of CREB is necessary for the postnatal acquisition of learned behavior in songbirds, and the CREB transgenic birds offer a unique opportunity to separately manipulate both genetic and environmental factors that impinge on the postnatal song learning. PMID:26048905

  12. Barriers to postnatal care and exclusive breastfeeding among urbanwomen in southeastern Nigeria

    PubMed Central

    Ugboaja, Joseph O.; Berthrand, Nwosu O.; Igwegbe, Anthony O.; OBI-Nwosu, Amaka L.

    2013-01-01

    Background: Available evidence shows that only a small proportion of Nigerian women access postnatal care and practice exclusive breastfeeding. Given that both interventions are critical to the survival of both the mother and the new born, it is important to identify factors that militate against an effective postnatal care and exclusive breastfeeding in the country, in order to scale up services. The aim was to determine the major barriers to postnatal care and exclusive breastfeeding among urban women in southeastern Nigeria. Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional survey of 400 urban market women using semistructured questionnaires and focus group discussions. Results: Out of 400 women interviewed, 365 (91.7%) attended postnatal clinic. Lack of knowledge about postnatal care services (42.2%; n = 14), distant location of the hospitals (36.4%; n = 12) and feeling that postnatal visits was not necessary (21.1%; n = 7) were the main reasons for non-attendance to postnatal clinic. With respect to exclusive breastfeeding, 143 (35.9%) of the women practiced EBF. The main reasons for nonpractice of EBF were that EBF was very stressful (26.2%; n = 67), mother's refusal (23.5%; n = 60), and the feeling that EBF was not necessary (18.1%; n = 46). Thirty five (13.7%) of the women were constrained by time while the husband's refusal accounted for 1.5% (n = 3) of the reasons for nonpractice of exclusive breastfeeding. Conclusion: Poor knowledge and inaccessibility to health facilities were the main obstacles to postnatal care while the practice of exclusive breastfeeding was limited by the stress and mothers refusal. PMID:23661899

  13. Postnatal stability, tissue, and time specific effects of AHRR methylation change in response to maternal smoking in pregnancy.

    PubMed

    Novakovic, Boris; Ryan, Joanne; Pereira, Natalie; Boughton, Berin; Craig, Jeffrey M; Saffery, Richard

    2014-03-01

    The intrauterine environment has the potential to "program" the developing fetus in a way that can be potentially deleterious to later health. While in utero environmental/stochastic factors are known to influence DNA methylation profile at birth, it has been difficult to assign specific examples of epigenetic variation to specific environmental exposures. Recently, several studies have linked exposure to smoking with DNA methylation change in the aryl hydrocarbon receptor repressor (AHRR) gene in blood. This includes hypomethylation of AHRR in neonatal blood in response to maternal smoking in pregnancy. The role of AHRR as a negative regulator of pathways involved in pleiotropic responses to environmental contaminants raises the possibility that smoking-induced hypomethylation is an adaptive response to an adverse in utero environmental exposure. However, the tissue specificity of the response to maternal smoking, and the stability of the methylation changes early in life remain to be determined. In this study we analyzed AHRR methylation in three cell types-cord blood mononuclear cells (CBMCs), buccal epithelium, and placenta tissue-from newborn twins of mothers who smoked throughout pregnancy and matched controls. Further, we explored the postnatal stability of this change at 18 months. Our results confirm the previous association between maternal smoking and AHRR methylation in neonatal blood. In addition, this study expands the region of AHRR methylation altered in response to maternal smoking during pregnancy and reveals the tissue-specific nature of epigenetic responses to environmental exposures in utero. Further, the evidence for postnatal stability of smoking-induced epigenetic change supports a role for epigenetics as a mediator of long-term effects of specific in utero exposures in humans. Longitudinal analysis of further specific exposures in larger cohorts is required to examine the extent of this phenomenon in humans. PMID:24270552

  14. Environmental factors that influence prescribed burning in the Northern Plains

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kruse, A.D.; Higgins, K.F.; Piehl, J.L.

    1983-01-01

    Several environmental conditions were recorded and analyzed for 192 prescribed burns in the Northern Great Plains. The purpose of these burns was to improve wildlife habitat and manipulate native prairie vegetation. All of the fires occurred in grassland and shrubsteppe vegetation types. Fuels were predominantly grasses and forbs intermixed with patches of shrubs. Nearly all of the fuels were 0.05 cm/h, do not burn. However, these are good conditions to burn stockpiles of unwanted fuels that are usually high risk elements during regular prescribed burns.2) Produce partial burns. Partial burns are defined as those where fire is discontinuous and patches of standing and lodged vegetation are left unburned. Partial burns occur most often when fine fuels feel moist when handled, where less than 2 days have passed since the last measurable precipitation, and when cloud cover is complete. Other conditions associated with partial burns are relative humidities >50 percent, temperatures 32 km/h, relative humidities 35 deg.C. These conditions occur most often in July, August, and September, but can occur anytime from April through October.

  15. Testosterone in tropical birds: effects of environmental and social factors.

    PubMed

    Goymann, Wolfgang; Moore, Ignacio T; Scheuerlein, Alexander; Hirschenhauser, Katharina; Grafen, Alan; Wingfield, John C

    2004-09-01

    Previous investigations suggest that male tropical birds have lower plasma testosterone concentrations than northern latitude species. To test whether this generalization is valid, we analyzed all currently available plasma testosterone data of tropical birds. We focused on peak breeding testosterone levels using phylogenetic and conventional statistics. Explanatory variables considered were social mating system, type of territoriality, breeding season length, and altitude. On average, tropical birds had lower mean peak testosterone levels than northern temperate birds. However, in several tropical species, testosterone levels were well within the range of northern latitude birds. Without controlling for phylogeny, breeding season length, type of territoriality, and altitude explained a significant proportion of the variance in testosterone levels. The shorter the breeding season, the higher the testosterone levels. Tropical birds that defend a breeding season territory had higher testosterone levels than birds that were year-round territorial or colonial, and testosterone levels were positively correlated with altitude. When controlling for phylogeny, only breeding season length predicted testosterone levels. In conclusion, we propose to refine previous notions of low plasma testosterone levels in tropical birds: short breeding seasons and perhaps environmental conditions at high altitudes precipitate conditions under which high testosterone levels are beneficial in the tropics. PMID:15478088

  16. Clinical, Genetic and Environmental Factors Associated with Congenital Vertebral Malformations

    PubMed Central

    Giampietro, P.F.; Raggio, C.L.; Blank, R.D.; McCarty, C.; Broeckel, U.; Pickart, M.A.

    2013-01-01

    Congenital vertebral malformations (CVM) pose a significant health problem because they can be associated with spinal deformities, such as congenital scoliosis and kyphosis, in addition to various syndromes and other congenital malformations. Additional information remains to be learned regarding the natural history of congenital scoliosis and related health problems. Although significant progress has been made in understanding the process of somite formation, which gives rise to vertebral bodies, there is a wide gap in our understanding of how genetic factors contribute to CVM development. Maternal diabetes during pregnancy most commonly contributes to the occurrence of CVM, followed by other factors such as hypoxia and anticonvulsant medications. This review highlights several emerging clinical issues related to CVM, including pulmonary and orthopedic outcome in congenital scoliosis. Recent breakthroughs in genetics related to gene and environment interactions associated with CVM development are discussed. The Klippel-Feil syndrome which is associated with cervical segmentation abnormalities is illustrated as an example in which animal models, such as the zebrafish, can be utilized to provide functional evidence of pathogenicity of identified mutations. PMID:23653580

  17. Environmental factors of urinary stones mineralogy, Khouzestan Province, Iran

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zarasvandi, Alireza; Carranza, E. J. M.; Heidari, Majid; Mousapour, Esmaeil

    2014-09-01

    Urinary stone diseases in the Khouzestan province (southwest Iran) are growing in number and it required extensive studies on various factors of the urinary stones formation in this province. In this research, in addition to distribution of urinary stones in different areas of province, the role of bioenvironmental (race), climate (temperature) and geology (water hardness) factors in urinary stones diversity has been studied. Mineralogical studied using X-ray diffraction showed that uricite and whewellite are the most frequency mineral phases. Struvite, Cystine, hydroxyapatite, weddellite, and Niahite can be observed as urinary stones, too. These data show that the urinary stone in the Khouzestan province can divide into 7 groups: calcium oxalate, phosphate, calcium oxalate/ phosphate, Urate, Urate/calcium, Urate/calcium oxalate/phosphate, Cystine/calcium oxalate. Also the results which attained from temperature effect investigation on the mineralogy of urinary stones, confirms that from Mediterranean sub-humid climates (northeastern area) to warm and dry climates (south and southwest area), calcium oxalate stones and urate stones concentration decreases and increases respectively. Comparison of data related to the drinking water hardness and mineralogy of urinary stones in different areas of Khouzestan province show that the combination of drinking water (especially water hardness) affects mineralogy of urinary stones in some areas (such az Ramhormoz and Hendijan). Finally, the data suggest that frequency of calcium oxalate in women is more than that of men. Moreover, there is direct relationship between the age (>45 years) and the increase in frequency of Urate minerals.

  18. Epidemiology of skin cancer: role of some environmental factors.

    PubMed

    Fabbrocini, Gabriella; Triassi, Maria; Mauriello, Maria Chiara; Torre, Guglielma; Annunziata, Maria Carmela; De Vita, Valerio; Pastore, Francesco; D'Arco, Vincenza; Monfrecola, Giuseppe

    2010-01-01

    The incidence rate of melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancer entities is dramatically increasing worldwide. Exposure to UVB radiation is known to induce basal and squamous cell skin cancer in a dose-dependent way and the depletion of stratospheric ozone has implications for increases in biologically damaging solar UVB radiation reaching the earth's surface. In humans, arsenic is known to cause cancer of the skin, as well as cancer of the lung, bladder, liver, and kidney. Exposure to high levels of arsenic in drinking water has been recognized in some regions of the world. SCC and BCC (squamous and basal cell carcinoma) have been reported to be associated with ingestion of arsenic alone or in combination with other risk factors. The impact of changes in ambient temperature will influence people's behavior and the time they spend outdoors. Higher temperatures accompanying climate change may lead, among many other effects, to increasing incidence of skin cancer. PMID:24281212

  19. Perinatal and Early Childhood Environmental Factors Influencing Allergic Asthma Immunopathogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Gaffin, Jonathan M.; Kanchongkittiphon, Watcharoot; Phipatanakul, Wanda

    2014-01-01

    Background The prevalence of asthma has increased dramatically over the past several decades. While hereditary factors are highly important, the rapid rise outstrips the pace of genomic variation. Great emphasis has been placed on potential modifiable early life exposures leading to childhood asthma. Methods We reviewed the recent medical literature for important studies discussing the role of the perinatal and early childhood exposures and the inception of childhood asthma. Results and Discussion Early life exposure to allergens (House dust mite (HDM), furred pets, cockroach, rodent and mold)air pollution (nitrogen dioxide (NO2), ozone (O3), volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and particulate matter (PM)) and viral respiratory tract infections (Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and human rhinovirus (hRV)) have been implicated in the development of asthma in high risk children. Conversely, exposure to microbial diversity in the perinatal period may diminish the development of atopy and asthma symptoms. PMID:24952205

  20. A Secreted Factor Coordinates Environmental Quality with Bacillus Development

    PubMed Central

    Ababneh, Qutaiba O.; Tindall, Amanda J.; Herman, Jennifer K.

    2015-01-01

    Entry into sporulation is governed by the master regulator Spo0A. Spo0A accumulates in its active form, Spo0A-P, as cells enter stationary phase. Prior reports have shown that the acute induction of constitutively active Spo0A during exponential growth does not result in sporulation. However, a subsequent study also found that a gradual increase in Spo0A-P, mediated through artificial expression of the kinase, KinA, during exponential growth, is sufficient to trigger sporulation. We report here that sporulation via KinA induction depends on the presence of an extracellular factor or factors (FacX) that only accumulates to active levels during post-exponential growth. FacX is retained by dialysis with a cutoff smaller than 500 Dalton, can be concentrated, and is susceptible to proteinase K digestion, similar to described quorum-sensing peptides shown to be involved in promoting sporulation. However, unlike previously characterized peptides, FacX activity does not require the Opp or App oligopeptide transporter systems. In addition, FacX activity does not depend on SigH, Spo0A, or ComX. Importantly, we find that in the presence of FacX, B. subtilis can be induced to sporulate following the artificial induction of constitutively active Spo0A. These results indicate that there is no formal requirement for gradual Spo0A-P accumulation and instead support the idea that sporulation requires both sufficient levels of active Spo0A and at least one other signal or condition. PMID:26657919

  1. Identifying Environmental Risk Factors of Cholera in a Coastal Area with Geospatial Technologies

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Min; Cao, Chunxiang; Wang, Duochun; Kan, Biao

    2014-01-01

    Satellites contribute significantly to environmental quality and public health. Environmental factors are important indicators for the prediction of disease outbreaks. This study reveals the environmental factors associated with cholera in Zhejiang, a coastal province of China, using both Remote Sensing (RS) and Geographic information System (GIS). The analysis validated the correlation between the indirect satellite measurements of sea surface temperature (SST), sea surface height (SSH) and ocean chlorophyll concentration (OCC) and the local cholera magnitude based on a ten-year monthly data from the year 1999 to 2008. Cholera magnitude has been strongly affected by the concurrent variables of SST and SSH, while OCC has a one-month time lag effect. A cholera prediction model has been established based on the sea environmental factors. The results of hot spot analysis showed the local cholera magnitude in counties significantly associated with the estuaries and rivers. PMID:25551518

  2. Comparison of Journal Citation Reports and Scopus Impact Factors for Ecology and Environmental Sciences Journals

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gray, Edward; Hodkinson, Sarah Z.

    2008-01-01

    Impact factors for journals listed under the subject categories "ecology" and "environmental sciences" in the Journal Citation Reports database were calculated using citation data from the Scopus database. The journals were then ranked by their Scopus impact factor and compared to the ranked lists of the same journals derived from Journal

  3. Intrinsic Motivation and Environmental Factors Affecting Research of Social Work Faculty on Aging

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wells, Janice G.; Short, Glenda F. Lester

    2010-01-01

    Within the context of Self-determination Theory, this research identifies intrinsic motivation and environmental factors that support social-work-faculty research in aging. Intrinsic factors include faculty's interest in gerontology as a field of practice, the desire to advance knowledge in the field of gerontology, including producing…

  4. EXAMINING EPIDEMIOLOGIC AND ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS ASSOCIATED WITH MICROBIAL RISKS FROM DRINKING WATER

    EPA Science Inventory

    This research project will: 1) help define the role of HuCV in drinking water risks; and 2) elucidate the impact of population-level factors, such as secondary transmission and immunity, as well as environmental factors, such as transport through the distribution system, on ri...

  5. Comparison of Journal Citation Reports and Scopus Impact Factors for Ecology and Environmental Sciences Journals

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gray, Edward; Hodkinson, Sarah Z.

    2008-01-01

    Impact factors for journals listed under the subject categories "ecology" and "environmental sciences" in the Journal Citation Reports database were calculated using citation data from the Scopus database. The journals were then ranked by their Scopus impact factor and compared to the ranked lists of the same journals derived from Journal…

  6. Intrinsic Motivation and Environmental Factors Affecting Research of Social Work Faculty on Aging

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wells, Janice G.; Short, Glenda F. Lester

    2010-01-01

    Within the context of Self-determination Theory, this research identifies intrinsic motivation and environmental factors that support social-work-faculty research in aging. Intrinsic factors include faculty's interest in gerontology as a field of practice, the desire to advance knowledge in the field of gerontology, including producing

  7. Genetic factors may play a prominent role in the development of coronary heart disease dependent on important environmental factors

    PubMed Central

    Song, C; Chang, Z; Magnusson, P K E; Ingelsson, E; Pedersen, N L

    2014-01-01

    Astract Song C, Chang Z, Magnusson PKE, Ingelsson E, Pedersen NL (Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm; Uppsala University, Uppsala; Sweden). Genetic factors may play a prominent role in the developmentofcoronary heart diseasedependenton important environmental factors. J InternMed2014; 275: 631639. Objective The aim of the study was to examine whether various lifestyle factors modify genetic influences on coronary heart disease (CHD). Design The effect of lifestyle factors [including smoking, sedentary lifestyle, alcohol intake and body mass index (BMI)] on risk of CHD was evaluated via Cox regression models in a twin study of geneenvironment interaction. Using structure equation modelling, we estimated genetic variance of CHD dependent on lifestyle factors. Subjects In total, 51065 same-sex twins from 25715 twin pairs born before 1958 and registered in the Swedish Twin Registry were eligible for this study. During the 40-year follow-up, 7264 incident CHD events were recorded. Results Smoking, sedentary lifestyle and above average BMI were significantly associated with increased CHD incidence. The heritability of CHD decreased with increasing age, as well as with increasing levels of BMI, in both men and women. Conclusions The difference in the genetic component of CHD as a function of BMI suggests that genetic factors may play a more prominent role for disease development in the absence of important environmental factors. Increased knowledge of geneenvironment interactions will be important for a full understanding of the aetiology of CHD. PMID:24330166

  8. Postnatal Weight Gain Modifies Severity and Functional Outcome of Oxygen-Induced Proliferative Retinopathy

    PubMed Central

    Stahl, Andreas; Chen, Jing; Sapieha, Przemyslaw; Seaward, Molly R.; Krah, Nathan M.; Dennison, Roberta J.; Favazza, Tara; Bucher, Felicitas; Löfqvist, Chatarina; Ong, Huy; Hellström, Ann; Chemtob, Sylvain; Akula, James D.; Smith, Lois E.H.

    2010-01-01

    In clinical studies, postnatal weight gain is strongly associated with retinopathy of prematurity (ROP). However, animal studies are needed to investigate the pathophysiological mechanisms of how postnatal weight gain affects the severity of ROP. In the present study, we identify nutritional supply as one potent parameter that affects the extent of retinopathy in mice with identical birth weights and the same genetic background. Wild-type pups with poor postnatal nutrition and poor weight gain (PWG) exhibit a remarkably prolonged phase of retinopathy compared to medium weight gain or extensive weight gain pups. A high (r2 = 0.83) parabolic association between postnatal weight gain and oxygen-induced retinopathy severity is observed, as is a significantly prolonged phase of proliferative retinopathy in PWG pups (20 days) compared with extensive weight gain pups (6 days). The extended retinopathy is concomitant with prolonged overexpression of retinal vascular endothelial growth factor in PWG pups. Importantly, PWG pups show low serum levels of nonfasting glucose, insulin, and insulin-like growth factor-1 as well as high levels of ghrelin in the early postoxygen-induced retinopathy phase, a combination indicative of poor metabolic supply. These differences translate into visual deficits in adult PWG mice, as demonstrated by impaired bipolar and proximal neuronal function. Together, these results provide evidence for a pathophysiological correlation between poor postnatal nutritional supply, slow weight gain, prolonged retinal vascular endothelial growth factor overexpression, protracted retinopathy, and reduced final visual outcome. PMID:21056995

  9. Environmental factors influencing cyanobacteria community structure in Dongping Lake, China.

    PubMed

    Lu, Xuetang; Tian, Chang; Pei, Haiyan; Hu, Wenrong; Xie, Jun

    2013-11-01

    The present study was conducted to provide a detailed understanding of the variation in cyanobacterial communities of Dongping Lake, which is the final water volume adjusting and storing lake in the east route of the South-to-North Water Diversion Project in China. The spatial and temporal distribution of cyanobacteria was assessed from May 2010 to October 2012 based on monthly samples collected from three stations. Over the 30-month survey, 15 genera and 25 species of cyanobacteria were identified, with cyanobacterial abundance at each monitoring station ranging from undetected to 3.04x10(7) cells/L, average of 4.27x10(6) cells/L. The dominant cyanobacterial species were Pseudanabaena limnetica and Aphanizomenon issatschenkoi and not the usual bloom-forming genera such as Microcystis and Anabaena. Cyanobacterial community structure and water quality variables exhibited substantial changes over the period of survey. Redundancy analysis, Pearson correlations, and regression analysis were applied to analyze the relationships among the variables. The results suggested that temperature and chemical oxygen demand were key drivers of the cyanobacterial community composition in Dongping Lake. In addition, the concentration of inorganic nitrogen in the lake had a profound effect on the cyanobacterial abundance as a non-limiting factor in warm periods. PMID:24552047

  10. The environmental factors as reason for emotional tension

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prisniakova, L.

    The information from environment is a reason of activation of an organism, it calls abrupt changings in nervous processes and it offers emotions. One part of emotions organizes and supports activity, others disorganize it. In fields of perception, of making decision, fulfilment of operatings, of learning the emotional excitation raises the level of carrying-out more easy problems and reduces of more difficult one. The report are presented the outcomes of quantitative determination of a level of emotional tension on successful activity. The inverse of the sign of influencing on efficiency of activity of the man is detected. The action of the emotional tension on efficiency of professional work was demonstrated to have similarly to influencing of motivation according to the law Yerkes -Dodson. The report introduces a mathematical model of connection of successful activity and motivations or the emotional tension. Introduced in the report the outcomes can serve the theoretical idealized basis of the quantitative characteristics of an estimation of activity of astronauts in conditions of the emotional factors at a phase of selection

  11. Environmental and genetic risk factors for eating disorders: What the clinician needs to know

    PubMed Central

    Mazzeo, Suzanne E.; Bulik, Cynthia M.

    2008-01-01

    Synopsis Patients and families are often aware of research on genetic factors influencing eating disorders. Accurate interpretations of research on environmental and genetic risk factors can be empowering to patients and families; however, misinterpretations could prove detrimental. The clinician who is not versed in genetic research may feel ill-prepared to discuss the nuances of genetic research with patients and families. In this paper the authors discuss what is known about genetic and environmental risk factors with an emphasis on gene-environment interplay in order to increase clinicians’ comfort level with discussing these complex issues with their patients. PMID:19014858

  12. Nociceptin and meiosis during spermatogenesis in postnatal testes.

    PubMed

    Eto, Ko

    2015-01-01

    Phosphorylated Rec8, a key component of cohesin, mediates the association and disassociation, "dynamics," of chromosomes occurring in synaptonemal complex formation, crossover recombination, and sister chromatid cohesion during meiosis in germ cells. Yet, the extrinsic factors triggering meiotic chromosome dynamics remained unclear. In postnatal testes, follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) acts directly on somatic Sertoli cells to activate gene expression via an intracellular signaling pathway composed of cAMP, cAMP-dependent protein kinase (PKA), and cAMP-response element-binding protein (CREB), and promotes germ cell development and spermatogenesis indirectly. Yet, the paracrine factors mediating the FSH effects to germ cells remained elusive. We have shown that nociceptin, known as a neuropeptide, is upregulated by FSH signaling through cAMP/PKA/CREB pathway in Sertoli cells of postnatal murine testes. Chromatin immunoprecipitation from Sertoli cells demonstrated that CREB phosphorylated at Ser133 associates with prepronociceptin gene encoding nociceptin. Analyses with Sertoli cells and testes revealed that both prepronociceptin mRNA and the nociceptin peptide are induced after FSH signaling is activated. In addition, the nociceptin peptide is induced in testes after 9 days post partum following FSH surge. Thus, our findings may identify nociceptin as a novel paracrine mediator of the FSH effects in the regulation of spermatogenesis; however, very little has known about the functional role of nociceptin in spermatogenesis. We have shown that nociceptin induces Rec8 phosphorylation, triggering chromosome dynamics, during meiosis in spermatocytes of postnatal murine testes. The nociceptin receptor Oprl-1 is exclusively expressed in the plasma membrane of testicular germ cells, mostly spermatocytes. Treatment of testes with nociceptin resulted in a rapid phosphorylation of Rec8. Injection of nociceptin into mice stimulated Rec8 phosphorylation and meiotic chromosome dynamics in testes, whereas injection of nocistatin, a specific inhibitor for nociceptin, abolished them. Therefore, our findings suggest that nociceptin is a novel extrinsic factor that plays a crucial role in the progress of meiosis during spermatogenesis. PMID:25677772

  13. The influence of environmental, biotic and spatial factors on diatom metacommunity structure in Swedish headwater streams.

    PubMed

    Göthe, Emma; Angeler, David G; Gottschalk, Steffi; Löfgren, Stefan; Sandin, Leonard

    2013-01-01

    Stream assemblages are structured by a combination of local (environmental filtering and biotic interactions) and regional factors (e.g., dispersal related processes). The relative importance of environmental and spatial (i.e., regional) factors structuring stream assemblages has been frequently assessed in previous large-scale studies, but biotic predictors (potentially reflecting local biotic interactions) have rarely been included. Diatoms may be useful for studying the effect of trophic interactions on community structure since: (1) a majority of experimental studies shows significant grazing effects on diatom species composition, and (2) assemblages can be divided into guilds that have different susceptibility to grazing. We used a dataset from boreal headwater streams in south-central Sweden (covering a spatial extent of ∼14000 km(2)), which included information about diatom taxonomic composition, abundance of invertebrate grazers (biotic factor), environmental (physicochemical) and spatial factors (obtained through spatial eigenfunction analyses). We assessed the relative importance of environmental, biotic, and spatial factors structuring diatom assemblages, and performed separate analyses on different diatom guilds. Our results showed that the diatom assemblages were mainly structured by environmental factors. However, unique spatial and biological gradients, specific to different guilds and unrelated to each other, were also evident. We conclude that biological predictors, in combination with environmental and spatial variables, can reveal a more complete picture of the local vs. regional control of species assemblages in lotic environments. Biotic factors should therefore not be overlooked in applied research since they can capture additional local control and therefore increase accuracy and performance of predictive models. The inclusion of biotic predictors did, however, not significantly influence the unique fraction explained by spatial factors, which suggests low bias in previous assessments of unique regional control of stream assemblages. PMID:23967290

  14. Personal and social factors that influence pro-environmental concern and behaviour: a review.

    PubMed

    Gifford, Robert; Nilsson, Andreas

    2014-06-01

    We review the personal and social influences on pro-environmental concern and behaviour, with an emphasis on recent research. The number of these influences suggests that understanding pro-environmental concern and behaviour is far more complex than previously thought. The influences are grouped into 18 personal and social factors. The personal factors include childhood experience, knowledge and education, personality and self-construal, sense of control, values, political and world views, goals, felt responsibility, cognitive biases, place attachment, age, gender and chosen activities. The social factors include religion, urban-rural differences, norms, social class, proximity to problematic environmental sites and cultural and ethnic variations We also recognize that pro-environmental behaviour often is undertaken based on none of the above influences, but because individuals have non-environmental goals such as to save money or to improve their health. Finally, environmental outcomes that are a result of these influences undoubtedly are determined by combinations of the 18 categories. Therefore, a primary goal of researchers now should be to learn more about how these many influences moderate and mediate one another to determine pro-environmental behaviour. PMID:24821503

  15. Industry efficiency and total factor productivity growth under resources and environmental constraint in China.

    PubMed

    Tao, Feng; Li, Ling; Xia, X H

    2012-01-01

    The growth of China's industry has been seriously depending on energy and environment. This paper attempts to apply the directional distance function and the Luenberger productivity index to measure the environmental efficiency, environmental total factor productivity, and its components at the level of subindustry in China over the period from 1999 to 2009 while considering energy consumption and emission of pollutants. This paper also empirically examines the determinants of efficiency and productivity change. The major findings are as follows. Firstly, the main sources of environmental inefficiency of China's industry are the inefficiency of gross industrial output value, the excessive energy consumption, and pollutant emissions. Secondly, the highest growth rate of environmental total factor productivity among the three industrial categories is manufacturing, followed by mining, and production and supply of electricity, gas, and water. Thirdly, foreign direct investment, capital-labor ratio, ownership structure, energy consumption structure, and environmental regulation have varying degrees of effects on the environmental efficiency and environmental total factor productivity. PMID:23365517

  16. Industry Efficiency and Total Factor Productivity Growth under Resources and Environmental Constraint in China

    PubMed Central

    Tao, Feng; Li, Ling; Xia, X. H.

    2012-01-01

    The growth of China's industry has been seriously depending on energy and environment. This paper attempts to apply the directional distance function and the Luenberger productivity index to measure the environmental efficiency, environmental total factor productivity, and its components at the level of subindustry in China over the period from 1999 to 2009 while considering energy consumption and emission of pollutants. This paper also empirically examines the determinants of efficiency and productivity change. The major findings are as follows. Firstly, the main sources of environmental inefficiency of China's industry are the inefficiency of gross industrial output value, the excessive energy consumption, and pollutant emissions. Secondly, the highest growth rate of environmental total factor productivity among the three industrial categories is manufacturing, followed by mining, and production and supply of electricity, gas, and water. Thirdly, foreign direct investment, capital-labor ratio, ownership structure, energy consumption structure, and environmental regulation have varying degrees of effects on the environmental efficiency and environmental total factor productivity. PMID:23365517

  17. [Environmental factors in the development of type 1 diabetes -- a new insight].

    PubMed

    P?aczkiewicz-Jankowska, Ewa; Szybi?ski, Zbigniew; Huszno, Bohdan

    2007-01-01

    According to the traditional model of pathogenesis of type 1 diabetes - it develops in genetically susceptible individuals in whom environmental factors trigger an autoimmune process of beta-cell destruction. Although susceptibility may be inherited, there is a growing body of evidence showing the role of environmental factors that might not only trigger but also perpetuate the chronic autoimmune process. These factors may exert their action long before the disease manifests itself clinically, which significantly hampers their identification. Three groups of environmental factors that were most widely studied include of viral infections, feeding patterns in infancy and toxic compounds (especially nitrites). Other factors possibly playing a role in modifying the development of the disease are vaccinations, psychological stress and climatological factors. The authors summarize the data supporting the role of environmental factors in the development of the disease and show a more recent model of type 1 diabetes pathogenesis. It may partly explain why the disease incidence increased has so much in the last three decades despite markedly improved hygiene and health care standards. PMID:17941471

  18. Sonic hedgehog signaling in the postnatal brain.

    PubMed

    lvarez-Buylla, Arturo; Ihrie, Rebecca A

    2014-09-01

    Sonic hedgehog (Shh) is a pleiotropic factor in the developing central nervous system (CNS), driving proliferation, specification, and axonal targeting in multiple sites within the forebrain, hindbrain, and spinal cord. Studies in embryonic CNS have shown how gradients of this morphogen are translated by neuroepithelial precursors to determine the types of neurons and glial cells they produce [1,2]. Shh also has a well-characterized role as a mitogen for specific progenitor cell types in neural development [3,4]. As we begin to appreciate that Shh continues to act in the adult brain, a central question is what functional role this ligand plays when major morphogenetic and proliferative processes are no longer in operation. A second fundamental question is whether similar signaling mechanisms operate in embryonic and adult CNS. In the two major germinal zones of the adult brain, Shh signaling modulates the self-renewal and specification of astrocyte-like primary progenitors, frequently referred to as neural stem cells (NSCs). It also may regulate the response of the mature brain to injury, as Shh signaling has been variously proposed to enhance or inhibit the development of a reactive astrocyte phenotype. The identity of cells producing the Shh ligand, and the conditions that trigger its release, are also areas of growing interest; both germinal zones in the adult brain contain Shh-responsive cells but do not autonomously produce this ligand. Here, we review recent findings revealing the function of this fascinating pathway in the postnatal and adult brain, and highlight ongoing areas of investigation into its actions long past the time when it shapes the developing brain. PMID:24862855

  19. Life on the boundary: Environmental factors as drivers of habitat distribution in the littoral zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cefalì, Maria Elena; Cebrian, Emma; Chappuis, Eglantine; Pinedo, Susana; Terradas, Marc; Mariani, Simone; Ballesteros, Enric

    2016-04-01

    The boundary between land and sea, i.e. the littoral zone, is home to a large number of habitats whose distribution is primarily driven by the distance to the sea level but also by other environmental factors such as littoral's geomorphological features, wave exposure, water temperature or orientation. Here we explore the relative importance of those major environmental factors that drive the presence of littoral rocky habitats along 1100 Km of Catalonia's shoreline (Spain, NW Mediterranean) by using Geographic Information Systems and Generalized Linear Models. The distribution of mediolittoral and upper infralittoral habitats responded to different environmental factors. Mediolittoral habitats showed regional differences drawn by sea-water temperature and substrate type. Wave exposure (hydrodynamism), slope and geological features were only relevant to those mediolittoral habitats with specific environmental needs. We did not find any regional pattern of distribution in upper infralittoral habitats, and selected factors only played a moderate role in habitat distribution at the local scale. This study shows for the first time that environmental factors determining habitat distribution differ within the mediolittoral and the upper infralittoral zones and provides the basis for further development of models oriented at predicting the distribution of littoral marine habitats.

  20. [Relationships between characteristics of ground bryophyte communities and environmental factors in urban area of Chongqing, China].

    PubMed

    Liu, Yan; Pi, Chun-yan; Tian, Shang

    2015-10-01

    The present study focused on bryophyte species composition, species diversity and the relationship between bryophyte communities and environmental factors in urban area of Chongqing City, by using biodiversity indices and the canonical correspondence analysis (CCA), based on the data of 44 plots. The results revealed that 86 species belonging to 43 genera and 25 families were found in saxicolous bryophyte communities, while 46 species belonging to 28 genera and 22 families were found in terricolous ones. The diversity indices of both saxicolous and terricolous bryophyte communities from campuses were higher than those of parks, natural scenic resorts, Jinyunshan National Nature Reserve. TWINSPAN classified saxicolous and terricolous bryophyte communities into three and two groups, respectively. CCA results showed canopy density was the major environmental factor of saxicolous bryophyte communities influencing bryophyte distribution in parks and campuses, whereas altitude, relative humidity and human disturbance were the major environmental factors in natural scenic resorts and nature reserve. Soil pH, canopy density and human disturbance were the major environmental factors in terricolous bryophyte communities in parks and campuses, whereas altitude, relative humidity and water content of the soil were the major environmental factors in those of natural scenic resorts and nature reserve. PMID:26995924

  1. Geographical variation in dementia: examining the role of environmental factors in Sweden and Scotland

    PubMed Central

    Russ, Tom C.; Gatz, Margaret; Pedersen, Nancy L.; Hannah, Jean; Wyper, Grant; Batty, G. David; Deary, Ian J.; Starr, John M.

    2015-01-01

    Background This study aimed to estimate the magnitude of geographical variation in dementia rates and suggest explanations for this variation. Small-area studies are scarce, and none has adequately investigated the relative contribution of genetic and environmental factors to the distribution of dementia. Methods We present two complementary small-area hierarchical Bayesian disease mapping studies using the comprehensive Swedish Twin Registry (n=27,680) and the 1932 Scottish Mental Survey cohort (n=37,597). The twin study allowed us to isolate the area in order to examine the effect of unshared environmental factors. The Scottish Mental Survey study allowed us to examine various epochs in the life course – approximately age 11 years and adulthood. Results We found a 2-to 3- fold geographical variation in dementia odds in Sweden, after twin random effects – likely to capture genetic and shared environmental variance – were removed. In Scotland we found no variation in dementia odds in childhood but substantial variation, following a broadly similar pattern to Sweden, by adulthood. Conclusions There is geographical variation in dementia rates. Most of this variation is likely to result from unshared environmental factors that have their effect in adolescence or later. Further work is required to confirm these findings and identify any potentially modifiable socio-environmental risk factors for dementia responsible for this geographical variation in risk. However, if these factors do exist and could be optimized in the whole population, our results suggest that dementia rates could be halved. PMID:25575031

  2. [Effect of environmental factors on fish community structure in the Huntai River Basin at multiple scales].

    PubMed

    Li, Yan-li; Li, Yan-fen; Xu, Zong-xue

    2014-09-01

    In June 2012, fishes was investigated at 65 sampling sites in the Huntai River basin in Northeast of China. Forty species were collected, belonging to 9 orders, 14 families,33 genera. Cobitidae and Cyprinidae were the dominant fishes in the community structure in the Huntai River basin, accounting for 13. 21% and 65. 83% of the fish community, respectively. There were two types of spatial distribution of fish community, one was distributed in the head water and tributaries in the upstream, and the other was in the plain rivers. Nemachilus nudus, Cobitis granoei and Phoxinus lagowskii dominated the local community in the upper reaches of the Dahuofang Reservoir and shenwo River, while Carassius ayratus and Hemiculter leucisculdus dominated the local community in the plain rivers. CCA (canonical correspondence analysis) was used to distinguish the primary environmental variables that affected the fish community structure. The results indicated fish community was mainly affected by environment factors at watershed and reach scales. Proportions of woodland and urban land, and altitude were three important environmental factors affecting the fish community at the watershed scale. Dissolved oxygen, total nitrogen, pH and habitat inhomogeneity significantly affected the fish community at the reach scale, whereas substrate didn't show significant influence at the microhabitat scale. Environmental factors at watershed scale explained 7. 66% of the variation of fish community structure, environmental factors at reach scale explained 10. 57% of the variation of fish community structure. Environmental factors at reach scale influenced the fish community more significantly. PMID:25518673

  3. The contribution of genetic and environmental factors to the duration of pregnancy.

    PubMed

    York, Timothy P; Eaves, Lindon J; Neale, Michael C; Strauss, Jerome F

    2014-05-01

    This review describes how improvements in biometric-genetic studies of twin kinships, half-sibships, and cousinships have now demonstrated a sizeable fetal genetic and maternal genetic contribution to the spontaneous onset of labor. This is an important development because previous literature for the most part reports only an influence of the maternal genome. Current estimates of the percent of variation that is attributable to fetal genetic factors range from 11-35%; the range for the maternal genetic contribution is 13-20%. These same studies demonstrate an even larger influence of environmental sources over and above the influence of genetic sources and previously identified environmental risk factors. With these estimates in hand, a major goal for research on pregnancy duration is to identify specific allelic variation and environmental risk to account for this estimated genetic and environmental variation. A review of the current literature can serve as a guide for future research efforts. PMID:24096276

  4. The Contribution of Genetic and Environmental Factors to the Duration of Pregnancy

    PubMed Central

    YORK, Timothy P.; EAVES, Lindon J.; NEALE, Michael C.; STRAUS, Jerome F.

    2013-01-01

    This review describes how improvements in biometrical-genetic studies of twin kinships, half-sibships and cousinships have now demonstrated a sizeable fetal genetic and maternal genetic contribution to the spontaneous onset of labor. This is an important development since previous literature for the most part only reports an influence of the maternal genome. Current estimates of the percent of variation attributable to fetal genetic factors range from 11% to 35% while the range for the maternal genetic contribution is 13-20%. These same studies demonstrate an even larger influence of environmental sources over and above the influence of genetic sources and previously identified environmental risk factors. With these estimates in hand, a major goal for research on pregnancy duration is to identify specific allelic variation and environmental risk to account for this estimated genetic and environmental variation. A review of the current literature can serve as a guide for future research efforts. PMID:24096276

  5. Preferential development of neuropeptide Y/GABA circuit in hypothalamic arcuate nucleus in postnatal rats.

    PubMed

    Sun, Xiaoping; Fukami, Tatsuya; Li, Tie; Desai, Mina; Ross, Michael G

    2016-03-15

    The hypothalamus, which plays a critical role in regulation of energy homeostasis, is formed during the perinatal period and thus vulnerable to fetal/newborn environmental conditions. We investigated synaptogenesis and neurotransmission of neurons in arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus (ARH) during the postnatal period using immunohistochemical and electrophysiological methods. Our results show that the density of neuropeptide Y (NPY) fibers increases abruptly after the second postnatal week. NPY and proopiomelanocortin (POMC) immunoreactive fibers/varicosities puncta are mutually juxtaposed to perikarya of both neurons with increasing NPY and decreasing POMC apposition until the third postnatal week. The frequencies of spontaneous GABAergic inhibitory and glutamatergic excitatory postsynaptic currents (sIPSC and sEPSC) increase with age, with action potential dependent sIPSCs predominant during first postnatal week and sEPSCs thereafter. The presynaptic function of ARH synapses appears to reach adult levels around the age of weaning, while the postsynaptic receptors are still undergoing modification, evidenced by changes of frequencies, amplitudes and deactivation kinetics of PSCs. The number of NPY fibers juxtaposed to NPY neurons is correlated with the frequency of postsynaptic currents, suggesting that NPY/GABA release may facilitate maturation of synapses on their innervated neurons. Our results indicate that a neural circuit in ARH with a stronger NPY/GABAergic tone undergoes significant development during the postnatal period, which may be important for the maturation and/or remodeling of ARH neural circuits. PMID:26790345

  6. Indigenous health and environmental risk factors: an Australian problem with global analogues?

    PubMed Central

    Knibbs, Luke D.; Sly, Peter D.

    2014-01-01

    Indigenous people experience poorer health than non-Indigenous people, and this well-described inequality has been observed in many countries. The contribution of different risk factors to the health ‘gap’ has understandably focussed on those factors for which there are sufficient data. However, this has precluded environmental risk factors – those present in air, water, food, and soil – due to a lack of data describing exposures and outcomes. These risk factors are demonstrably important at the global scale, as highlighted by the 2010 Global Burden of Disease study. Here, we describe how a greater focus on environmental risk factors is required in order to define their role in the Indigenous health gap. We use the Australian context as a case study of an issue we feel has global analogues and relevance. Suggestions for how and why this situation should be remedied are presented and discussed. PMID:24802385

  7. [Effects of environmental factors on litter decomposition in arid and semi-arid regions: A review].

    PubMed

    Wang, Xin-Yuan; Zhao, Xue-Yong; Li, Yu-Lin; Lian, Jie; Qu, Hao; Yue, Xiang-Fei

    2013-11-01

    Litter decomposition is one of the important biochemical processes in arid and semi-arid regions, and a key component of regional nutrient turnover and carbon cycling, which is mainly affected by climate, litter quality, and decomposer community. In order to deeply understand the relationships between litter decomposition and environmental factors in arid and semi-arid regions, this paper summarized the research progress in the effects of abiotic factors (soil temperature, precipitation, and ultraviolet-B radiation) and biotic factors (litter quality, soil microbial and animal composition and community structure) on the litter decomposition in these regions. Among the factors, precipitation and ultraviolet-B radiation are considered to be the main limiting factors of litter decomposition. In arid and semi-arid regions, precipitation can significantly increase the litter decomposition rate in a short term, while the photo-degradation induced by ultraviolet-B radiation, due to the strong and long-term radiation, can increase the decomposition rate of terrestrial litter. Litter quality, soil microbial and animal composition and community structure are mainly affected by the type of ecosystems in a long term. However, the affecting mechanisms of these environmental factors on litter decomposition are still not very clear. It was suggested that the future litter ecological research should be paid more attention to the interaction of environmental factors under climate change, the variations of litter decomposition at different spatial scales, and the establishment of litter decomposition models in relation to the synergistic interactions of multiple factors. PMID:24564163

  8. Environmental risk factors for type 1 diabetes in Rome and province

    PubMed Central

    Visalli, N; Sebastiani, L; Adorisio, E; Conte, A; De Cicco, A L; D'Elia, R; Manfrini, S; Pozzilli, P; the, I

    2003-01-01

    Background: In subjects genetically susceptible to type 1 diabetes, exposure to environmental factors during the gestational period, the neonatal period, and the first years of life is thought to play an important role in triggering the immune process leading to ß cell destruction. Aims: To investigate risk factors for inhabitants of continental Italy. Methods: A case-control study of 150 type 1 diabetes cases and 750 control subjects (age range 6–18 years) was carried out in Rome and its province, measuring the exposure to environmental risk factors. Results: Three environmental factors were found to occur significantly more in the diabetic group than in the controls. During the mothers' pregnancies, the one risk factor which proved to be higher in diabetics than in controls was maternal infectious disease. During the neonatal period, no risk factors associated with the disease were detected. During early life, eczema and a short duration of breast feeding (less than three months), occurred significantly more in diabetic cases than controls. Conclusion: Eczema and breast feeding for less than three months are risk factors for type 1 diabetes in a southern European population. The type, duration, and mode of treatment for infectious diseases during pregnancy need additional investigation as risk factors for type 1 diabetes. PMID:12876166

  9. Critical Environmental Factors for Transportation Cycling in Children: A Qualitative Study Using Bike-Along Interviews

    PubMed Central

    Ghekiere, Ariane; Van Cauwenberg, Jelle; de Geus, Bas; Clarys, Peter; Cardon, Greet; Salmon, Jo; De Bourdeaudhuij, Ilse; Deforche, Benedicte

    2014-01-01

    Background Environmental factors are found to influence transport-related physical activity, but have rarely been studied in relation with cycling for transport to various destinations in 10–12 yr old children. The current qualitative study used ‘bike-along interviews’ with children and parents to allow discussion of detailed environmental factors that may influence children's cycling for transport, while cycling in the participant's neighborhood. Methods Purposeful convenience sampling was used to recruit 35 children and one of their parents residing in (semi-) urban areas. Bike-along interviews were conducted to and from a randomly chosen destination (e.g. library) within a 15 minutes' cycle trip in the participant's neighborhood. Participants wore a GoPro camera to objectively assess environmental elements, which were subsequently discussed with participants. Content analysis and arising themes were derived using a grounded theory approach. Results The discussed environmental factors were categorized under traffic, urban design, cycling facilities, road design, facilities at destination, aesthetics, topography, weather, social control, stranger danger and familiar environment. Across these categories many environmental factors were (in)directly linked to road safety. This was illustrated by detailed discussions of the children's visibility, familiarity with specific traffic situations, and degree of separation, width and legibility of cycle facilities. Conclusion Road safety is of major concern in this 10–12 yr old study population. Bike-along interviews were able to identify new, detailed and context-specific physical environmental factors which could inform policy makers to promote children's cycling for transport. However, future studies should investigate whether hypothetical changes to such micro environmental features influence perceptions of safety and if this in turn could lead to changes in children's cycling for transport. PMID:25250738

  10. Human factors in environmental management: New directions from the Hanford Site

    SciTech Connect

    Wise, J.A.; Savage, S.F.

    1992-10-01

    Environmental management is the general term given to modern attempts to seek technological solutions to certain constrained environmental problems. it involves developing and applying new technologies that respond to changes in environmental policy. It does not eliminate the need for environmental ethics'' in society. Nor does it substitute for the fundamental changes in political and social structures that are needed for dealing with large-scale environmental issues. The scope of these issues can be illustrated by looking at the Hanford Site. Since 1943, the 560-square-mile Hanford Site in southeastern Washington state has been the production source of much of the nuclear weapons-grade radioactive materials for the United States. The legacy of 50 years of producing fissile materials has been an environmental cleanup problem of impressive proportions. In 1989, with the Cold War winding down, Secretary of Energy James Watkins established a new vision for Hanford as the flagship for waste management research.'' As plans and preparations for cleanup work proceed at the Hanford Site and around the world, the need for well-orchestrated environmental management methodologies has become increasingly apparent. In 1990, a Human Factors Engineering Group was established in the Technology Planning and Analysis Center at PNL to provide appropriate support for the Laboratory's research efforts. At an ever-increasing rate, these research efforts require integrating human performance into complex environmental technology systems. The endeavor of responding to the Laboratory's research needs has provided innovative opportunities for the application of the concept of Human Factors. Discussed are some of the major applications of Human Factors to environmental management.

  11. Impact of environmental factors on the emergence, transmission and distribution of Toxoplasma gondii.

    PubMed

    Yan, Chao; Liang, Li-Jun; Zheng, Kui-Yang; Zhu, Xing-Quan

    2016-01-01

    Toxoplasma gondii is an obligate intracellular protozoan that poses a great threat to human health and economic well-being worldwide. The effects of environmental factors such as changing climate and human activities on the ecology of this protozoan are being discovered. Accumulated evidence shows that changes of these environmental factors can exert influence on the occurrence, transmission and distribution of T. gondii. This article reviews studies from different geographical regions with varying climates, social cultures and animal welfare standards. It aims to illustrate how these environmental factors work, highlighting their importance in influencing the ecology of T. gondii, as well as providing clues which may contribute to preventing transmission of this important zoonotic pathogen. PMID:26965989

  12. Occupational and environmental exposures as risk factors for systemic lupus erythematosus.

    PubMed

    Cooper, Glinda S; Parks, Christine G

    2004-10-01

    Although genetic susceptibility plays a strong role in the etiology of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), recent research has provided new evidence of the potential influence of environmental factors in the risk for this disease. This paper describes epidemiologic and experimental research pertaining to occupational and environmental sources of exposure to respirable crystalline silica, solvents and pesticides, and two "lifestyle" factors (smoking and hair dye use). As has been seen with other systemic autoimmune diseases (eg, systemic sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis), a series of epidemiologic studies, using different designs in different settings, have demonstrated relatively strong and consistent associations between occupational silica exposure and SLE. The type and quality of exposure assessment is an important consideration in evaluating these studies. Recent experimental studies examined the effect of trichloroethylene exposure in MRL+/+ mice, but to date there have been few epidemiologic studies of solvents and SLE. There are numerous avenues with respect to environmental factors in SLE that need additional research. PMID:15355749

  13. Analysis of environmental stress factors using an artificial growth system and plant fitness optimization.

    PubMed

    Lee, Meonghun; Yoe, Hyun

    2015-01-01

    The environment promotes evolution. Evolutionary processes represent environmental adaptations over long time scales; evolution of crop genomes is not inducible within the relatively short time span of a human generation. Extreme environmental conditions can accelerate evolution, but such conditions are often stress inducing and disruptive. Artificial growth systems can be used to induce and select genomic variation by changing external environmental conditions, thus, accelerating evolution. By using cloud computing and big-data analysis, we analyzed environmental stress factors for Pleurotus ostreatus by assessing, evaluating, and predicting information of the growth environment. Through the indexing of environmental stress, the growth environment can be precisely controlled and developed into a technology for improving crop quality and production. PMID:25874206

  14. [Spatial and temporal changes of emerging environmental pollution accidents and impact factors in China].

    PubMed

    Li, Jing; L, Yong-long; He, Gui-zhen; Wang, Tie-yu; Luo, Wei; Shi, Ya-juan

    2008-09-01

    Based on environmental statistics data from 1993 to 2005, spatial distribution and temporal tendency of the environmental pollution and destruction accidents and their external causes were analyzed by using GIS and non-parametric correlation methods. It was concluded that (1) during the study period, annual environmental pollution accidents was maximally 3001 times in 1994 and minimally 1406 in 2005, while the frequency decreased in general. In addition, water and air accidents occupied the most; (2) environmental pollution and destruction accidents centralized in southeast and middle parts of China, mainly in Hunan, Sichuan, and Guangxi; (3) factors including population, GDP, company number and industrial waste water discharge had positive impacts on frequency of environmental pollution and destruction accidents, while in developed provinces the frequency was only correlated with company number. PMID:19068665

  15. Analysis of Environmental Stress Factors Using an Artificial Growth System and Plant Fitness Optimization

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Meonghun; Yoe, Hyun

    2015-01-01

    The environment promotes evolution. Evolutionary processes represent environmental adaptations over long time scales; evolution of crop genomes is not inducible within the relatively short time span of a human generation. Extreme environmental conditions can accelerate evolution, but such conditions are often stress inducing and disruptive. Artificial growth systems can be used to induce and select genomic variation by changing external environmental conditions, thus, accelerating evolution. By using cloud computing and big-data analysis, we analyzed environmental stress factors for Pleurotus ostreatus by assessing, evaluating, and predicting information of the growth environment. Through the indexing of environmental stress, the growth environment can be precisely controlled and developed into a technology for improving crop quality and production. PMID:25874206

  16. Radiology of postnatal skeletal development. Pt. 7

    SciTech Connect

    Ogden, J.A.; Phillips, S.B.

    1983-02-01

    Twenty-four pairs of scapulae from fetal specimens and 35 pairs of scapulae from postnatal cadavers ranging in age from full-term neonates to 14 years, were studied morphologically and roentgenographically. Air-cartilage interfacing was used to demonstrate both the osseous and cartilaginous contours. When the entire chondro-osseous dimensions, rather than just the osseous dimensions, were measured, the scapula had a height-width ratio ranging from 1.36 to 1.52 (average 1.44) during most of fetal development. The exceptions were three stillborns with camptomelic, thanatophoric, and achondrogenic dwarfism in which the ratio averaged 0.6. At no time during fetal development was the glenoid cavity convex; it always had a concave articular surface. However, the osseous subchrondral countour was often flat or slightly convex. In the postnatal period the height-width ratio averaged 1.49. The ratio remained virtually unchanged throughout skeletal growth and maturation. In a patient with unilateral Sprengel's deformity the ratio for the normal side was 1.5, while the abnormal was 1.0. The cartilaginous glenoid cavity was always concave during postnatal development, even in the specimens with major structural deformities, although the subchondral osseous contour was usually flat or convex during the first few years of postnatal development. Ossification of the coracoid process began with the development of a primary center at three to four months. A bipolar physis was present between the primary coracoid center and the primary scapular center until late adolescence.

  17. Post-natal imprinting: evidence from marsupials

    PubMed Central

    Stringer, J M; Pask, A J; Shaw, G; Renfree, M B

    2014-01-01

    Genomic imprinting has been identified in therian (eutherian and marsupial) mammals but not in prototherian (monotreme) mammals. Imprinting has an important role in optimising pre-natal nutrition and growth, and most imprinted genes are expressed and imprinted in the placenta and developing fetus. In marsupials, however, the placental attachment is short-lived, and most growth and development occurs post-natally, supported by a changing milk composition tailor-made for each stage of development. Therefore there is a much greater demand on marsupial females during post-natal lactation than during pre-natal placentation, so there may be greater selection for genomic imprinting in the mammary gland than in the short-lived placenta. Recent studies in the tammar wallaby confirm the presence of genomic imprinting in nutrient-regulatory genes in the adult mammary gland. This suggests that imprinting may influence infant post-natal growth via the mammary gland as it does pre-natally via the placenta. Similarly, an increasing number of imprinted genes have been implicated in regulating feeding and nurturing behaviour in both the adult and the developing neonate/offspring in mice. Together these studies provide evidence that genomic imprinting is critical for regulating growth and subsequently the survival of offspring not only pre-natally but also post-natally. PMID:24595366

  18. Postnatal testosterone concentrations and male social development.

    PubMed

    Alexander, Gerianne M

    2014-01-01

    Converging evidence from over 40 years of behavioral research indicates that higher testicular androgens in prenatal life and at puberty contribute to the masculinization of human behavior. However, the behavioral significance of the transient activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis in early postnatal life remains largely unknown. Although early research on non-human primates indicated that suppression of the postnatal surge in testicular androgens had no measurable effects on the later expression of the male behavioral phenotype, recent research from our laboratory suggests that postnatal testosterone concentrations influence male infant preferences for larger social groups and temperament characteristics associated with the later development of aggression. In later assessment of gender-linked behavior in the second year of life, concentrations of testosterone at 3-4 months of age were unrelated to toy choices and activity levels during toy play. However, higher concentrations of testosterone predicted less vocalization in toddlers and higher parental ratings on an established screening measure for autism spectrum disorder. These findings suggest a role of the transient activation of the HPG axis in the development of typical and atypical male social relations and suggest that it may be useful in future research on the exaggerated rise in testosterone secretion in preterm infants or exposure to hormone disruptors in early postnatal life to include assessment of gender-relevant behavioral outcomes, including childhood disorders with sex-biased prevalence rates. PMID:24600437

  19. Post-natal imprinting: evidence from marsupials.

    PubMed

    Stringer, J M; Pask, A J; Shaw, G; Renfree, M B

    2014-08-01

    Genomic imprinting has been identified in therian (eutherian and marsupial) mammals but not in prototherian (monotreme) mammals. Imprinting has an important role in optimising pre-natal nutrition and growth, and most imprinted genes are expressed and imprinted in the placenta and developing fetus. In marsupials, however, the placental attachment is short-lived, and most growth and development occurs post-natally, supported by a changing milk composition tailor-made for each stage of development. Therefore there is a much greater demand on marsupial females during post-natal lactation than during pre-natal placentation, so there may be greater selection for genomic imprinting in the mammary gland than in the short-lived placenta. Recent studies in the tammar wallaby confirm the presence of genomic imprinting in nutrient-regulatory genes in the adult mammary gland. This suggests that imprinting may influence infant post-natal growth via the mammary gland as it does pre-natally via the placenta. Similarly, an increasing number of imprinted genes have been implicated in regulating feeding and nurturing behaviour in both the adult and the developing neonate/offspring in mice. Together these studies provide evidence that genomic imprinting is critical for regulating growth and subsequently the survival of offspring not only pre-natally but also post-natally. PMID:24595366

  20. Environmental Factors in an Ontario Community with Disparities in Colorectal Cancer Incidence

    PubMed Central

    Sritharan, Jeavana; Kamaleswaran, Rishikesan; McFarlan, Ken; Lemonde, Manon; George, Clemon; Sanchez, Otto

    2014-01-01

    Objective: In Ontario, there are significant geographical disparities in colorectal cancer incidence. In particular, the northern region of Timiskaming has the highest incidence of colorectal cancer in Ontario while the southern region of Peel displays the lowest. We aimed to identify non-nutritional modifiable environmental factors in Timiskaming that may be associated with its diverging colorectal cancer incidence rates when compared to Peel. Methods: We performed a systematic review to identify established and proposed environmental factors associated with colorectal cancer incidence, created an assessment questionnaire tool regarding these environmental exposures, and applied this questionnaire among 114 participants from the communities of Timiskaming and Peel. Results: We found that tobacco smoking, alcohol consumption, residential use of organochlorine pesticides, and potential exposure to toxic metals were dominant factors among Timiskaming respondents. We found significant differences regarding active smoking, chronic alcohol use, reported indoor and outdoor household pesticide use, and gold and silver mining in the Timiskaming region. Conclusions: This study, the first to assess environmental factors in the Timiskaming community, identified higher reported exposures to tobacco, alcohol, pesticides, and mining in Timiskaming when compared with Peel. These significant findings highlight the need for specific public health assessments and interventions regarding community environmental exposures. PMID:24762360

  1. Long-term effects of prenatal stress experiences and postnatal maternal separation on emotionality and attentional processes.

    PubMed

    Lehmann, J; Stöhr, T; Feldon, J

    2000-01-01

    Postnatal environmental manipulations naturally occur on the background of prenatal experiences. In the laboratory rat, both pre- and postnatal environmental manipulations have been shown to alter adult behaviour. Additionally, it has been demonstrated that the consequences of postnatal manipulations can be altered by previous prenatal stress experience (PS). In the present study, we investigated long-term behavioural consequences of combined PS and postnatal experience, namely repeated maternal separation (MS). PS primarily increases emotionality and fear-related behaviour, while postnatal repeated MS has been previously reported to affect primarily attentional processes. Thus, we tested adult male and female Wistar rats on paradigms involving both emotionality and attention, namely open field, prepulse inhibition (PPI), and latent inhibition (LI) in the active avoidance and the conditioned emotional response paradigms. In line with previous reports, PS decreased open-field locomotion and impaired avoidance learning (increased emotionality), while MS enhanced LI (selective attention) and improved avoidance learning. Further, PS also increased PPI. There was little interaction between the two manipulations: The increased PPI seen after PS was normalised by MS, and the MS-induced enhancement of LI (using the active avoidance paradigm) was not evident in subjects previously subjected to PS. Taken together, these results suggest that the effects of PS and repeated MS are not synergistic in any of the investigated paradigms but can antagonise each other. Thus, in assessing the effects of postnatal manipulations, attention should be paid to the inadvertent occurrence of prenatal stress. PMID:10628737

  2. NASA Space Flight Human-System Standard Human Factors, Habitability, and Environmental Health

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Holubec, Keith; Connolly, Janis

    2010-01-01

    This slide presentation reviews the history, and development of NASA-STD-3001, NASA Space Flight Human-System Standard Human Factors, Habitability, and Environmental Health, and the related Human Integration Design Handbook. Currently being developed from NASA-STD-3000, this project standard currently in review will be available in two volumes, (i.e., Volume 1 -- VCrew Health and Volume 2 -- Human Factors, Habitability, and Environmental Health) and the handbook will be both available as a pdf file and as a interactive website.

  3. Survival of the hermit crab, Clibanarius vittatus, exposed to selenium and other environmental factors

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1986-09-01

    Recent investigations of water quality criteria have frequently examined the effects of a pollutant; however, a more realistic investigation would consider effects of multiple environmental factors and their interactions with the pollutant. Awareness of selenium as a pollutant is increasing. The growing sulfur and petroleum industries are only two of the potential sources of the element on the Texas coast. This study examined the toxicity of selenium to hermit crab Clibanarius vittatus (Bosc) under twelve different combinations of temperature and salinity. Additionally, the impact of the organisms' original environment was considered as an environmental factor.

  4. Effect of environmental factors on hydrogen permeation in line pipe steel

    SciTech Connect

    Kimura, M.; Totsuka, N.; Kurisu, T.; Hane, T.; Nakai, Y.

    1988-10-01

    The hydrogen induced cracking (HIC) susceptibility of line pipe steel is affected by the hydrogen permeation rate. Many environmental factors, such as the partial pressure of H/sub 2/S and CO/sub 2/, temperature, cations, and the solution pH, affect the hydrogen permeation rate. This paper investigates the influence of these environmental factors on hydrogen permeation by using an autoclave with an electrochemical permeation measurement system. The results are discussed based on the corrosion film analysis of the steel surface.

  5. Combined and interactive effects of environmental and GWAS-identified risk factors in ovarian cancer

    PubMed Central

    Pearce, Celeste Leigh; Rossing, Mary Anne; Lee, Alice W.; Ness, Roberta; Webb, Penelope M.; Chenevix-Trench, Georgia; Jordan, Susan M.; Stram, Douglas A.; Chang-Claude, Jenny; Hein, Rebecca; Nickels, Stefan; Lurie, Galina; Thompson, Pamela J.; Carney, Michael E.; Goodman, Marc T.; Moysich, Kirsten; Hogdall, Estrid; Jensen, Allan; Goode, Ellen L.; Fridley, Brooke L.; Cunningham, Julie M.; Vierkant, Robert A.; Weber, Rachel Palmieri; Ziogas, Argyrios; Anton-Culver, Hoda; Gayther, Simon A.; Gentry-Maharaj, Alexandra; Menon, Usha; Ramus, Susan J.; Brinton, Louise; Wentzensen, Nicolas; Lissowska, Jolanta; Garcia-Closas, Montserrat; Massuger, Leon F.A.G; Kiemeney, Lambertus A.L.M.; Van Altena, Anne M.; Aben, Katja K.H.; Berchuck, Andrew; Doherty, Jennifer A.; Iversen, Edwin; McGuire, Valerie; Moorman, Patricia G.; Pharoah, Paul; Pike, Malcolm C.; Risch, Harvey; Sieh, Weiva; Stram, Daniel O.; Terry, Kathryn L.; Whittemore, Alice; Wu, Anna H.; Schildkraut, Joellen M.; Kjaer, Susanne K.

    2014-01-01

    Background There are several well-established environmental risk factors for ovarian cancer, and recent genome-wide association studies have also identified six variants that influence disease risk. However, the interplay between such risk factors and susceptibility loci has not been studied. Methods Data from 14 ovarian cancer case-control studies were pooled, and stratified analyses by each environmental risk factor with tests for heterogeneity were conducted to determine the presence of interactions for all histological subtypes. A genetic “risk score” was created to consider the effects of all six variants simultaneously. A multivariate model was fit to examine the association between all environmental risk factors and genetic risk score on ovarian cancer risk. Results Among 7,374 controls and 5,566 cases, there was no statistical evidence of interaction between the six SNPs or genetic risk score and the environmental risk factors on ovarian cancer risk. In a main effects model, women in the highest genetic risk score quartile had a 65% increased risk of ovarian cancer compared to women in the lowest (95% CI 1.48-1.84). Analyses by histological subtype yielded risk differences across subtype for endometriosis (phet<0.001), parity (phet<0.01), and tubal ligation (phet=0.041). Conclusions The lack of interactions suggests that a multiplicative model is the best fit for these data. Under such a model, we provide a robust estimate of each risk factor's effect, which sets the stage for absolute risk prediction modeling that considers both environmental and genetic risk factors. Further research into the observed differences in risk across histological subtype is warranted. PMID:23462924

  6. Radium concentration factors and their use in health and environmental risk assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Meinhold, A.F.; Hamilton, L.D.

    1991-12-31

    Radium is known to be taken up by aquatic animals, and tends to accumulate in bone, shell and exoskeleton. The most common approach to estimating the uptake of a radionuclide by aquatic animals for use in health and environmental risk assessments is the concentration factor method. The concentration factor method relates the concentration of a contaminant in an organism to the concentration in the surrounding water. Site specific data are not usually available, and generic, default values are often used in risk assessment studies. This paper describes the concentration factor method, summarizes some of the variables which may influence the concentration factor for radium, reviews reported concentration factors measured in marine environments and presents concentration factors derived from data collected in a study in coastal Louisiana. The use of generic default values for the concentration factor is also discussed.

  7. Radium concentration factors and their use in health and environmental risk assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Meinhold, A.F.; Hamilton, L.D.

    1991-01-01

    Radium is known to be taken up by aquatic animals, and tends to accumulate in bone, shell and exoskeleton. The most common approach to estimating the uptake of a radionuclide by aquatic animals for use in health and environmental risk assessments is the concentration factor method. The concentration factor method relates the concentration of a contaminant in an organism to the concentration in the surrounding water. Site specific data are not usually available, and generic, default values are often used in risk assessment studies. This paper describes the concentration factor method, summarizes some of the variables which may influence the concentration factor for radium, reviews reported concentration factors measured in marine environments and presents concentration factors derived from data collected in a study in coastal Louisiana. The use of generic default values for the concentration factor is also discussed.

  8. Influence of environmental factors in the development of inflammatory bowel diseases.

    PubMed

    Legaki, Evangelia; Gazouli, Maria

    2016-02-01

    Idiopathic inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD), Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC), are multifactorial diseases that are manifested after disruption of a genetic predisposed individual and its intestinal microflora through an environmental stimulus. Urbanization and industrialization are associated with IBD. Epidemiological data, clinical observations and family/immigrants studies indicate the significance of environmental influence in the development of IBD. Some environmental factors have a different effect on the subtypes of IBD. Smoking and appendectomy is negatively associated with UC, but they are aggravating factors for CD. A westernized high fat diet, full of refined carbohydrates is strongly associated with the development of IBD, contrary to a high in fruit, vegetables and polyunsaturated fatty acid-3 diet that is protective against these diseases. High intake of nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drug and oral contraceptive pills as well as the inadequacy of vitamin D leads to an increased risk for IBD and a more malignant course of disease. Moreover, other factors such as air pollution, psychological factors, sleep disturbances and exercise influence the development and the course of IBD. Epigenetic mechanism like DNA methylation, histone modification and altered expression of miRNAS could explain the connection between genes and environmental factors in triggering the development of IBD. PMID:26855817

  9. Objective assessment of facial skin aging and the associated environmental factors in Japanese monozygotic twins

    PubMed Central

    Ichibori, Ryoko; Fujiwara, Takashi; Tanigawa, Tomoko; Kanazawa, Shigeyuki; Shingaki, Kenta; Torii, Kosuke; Tomita, Koichi; Yano, Kenji; Sakai, Yasuo; Hosokawa, Ko

    2014-01-01

    Twin studies, especially those involving monozygotic (MZ) twins, facilitate the analysis of factors affecting skin aging while controlling for age, gender, and genetic susceptibility. The purpose of this study was to objectively assess various features of facial skin and analyze the effects of environmental factors on these features in MZ twins. At the Osaka Twin Research Center, 67 pairs of MZ twins underwent medical interviews and photographic assessments, using the VISIA® Complexion Analysis System. First, the average scores of the right and left cheek skin spots, wrinkles, pores, texture, and erythema were calculated; the differences between the scores were then compared in each pair of twins. Next, using the results of medical interviews and VISIA data, we investigated the effects of environmental factors on skin aging. The data were analyzed using Pearson's correlation coefficient test and the Wilcoxon signed-rank test. The intrapair differences in facial texture scores significantly increased as the age of the twins increased (P = 0.03). Among the twin pairs who provided answers to the questions regarding history differences in medical interviews, the twins who smoked or did not use skin protection showed significantly higher facial texture or wrinkle scores compared with the twins not exposed to cigarettes or protectants (P = 0.04 and 0.03, respectively). The study demonstrated that skin aging among Japanese MZ twins, especially in terms of facial texture, was significantly influenced by environmental factors. In addition, smoking and skin protectant use were important environmental factors influencing skin aging. PMID:24910280

  10. Influence of environmental factors in the development of inflammatory bowel diseases

    PubMed Central

    Legaki, Evangelia; Gazouli, Maria

    2016-01-01

    Idiopathic inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD), Crohn’s disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC), are multifactorial diseases that are manifested after disruption of a genetic predisposed individual and its intestinal microflora through an environmental stimulus. Urbanization and industrialization are associated with IBD. Epidemiological data, clinical observations and family/immigrants studies indicate the significance of environmental influence in the development of IBD. Some environmental factors have a different effect on the subtypes of IBD. Smoking and appendectomy is negatively associated with UC, but they are aggravating factors for CD. A westernized high fat diet, full of refined carbohydrates is strongly associated with the development of IBD, contrary to a high in fruit, vegetables and polyunsaturated fatty acid-3 diet that is protective against these diseases. High intake of nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drug and oral contraceptive pills as well as the inadequacy of vitamin D leads to an increased risk for IBD and a more malignant course of disease. Moreover, other factors such as air pollution, psychological factors, sleep disturbances and exercise influence the development and the course of IBD. Epigenetic mechanism like DNA methylation, histone modification and altered expression of miRNAS could explain the connection between genes and environmental factors in triggering the development of IBD. PMID:26855817

  11. On the Genetic and Environmental Correlations between Trait Emotional Intelligence and Vocational Interest Factors.

    PubMed

    Schermer, Julie Aitken; Petrides, Konstantinos V; Vernon, Philip A

    2015-04-01

    The phenotypic (observed), genetic, and environmental correlations were examined in a sample of adult twins between the four factors and global score of the trait emotional intelligence questionnaire (TEIQue) and the seven vocational interest factors of the Jackson Career Explorer (JCE). Multiple significant correlations were found involving the work style vocational interest factor (consisting of job security, stamina, accountability, planfulness, and interpersonal confidence) and the social vocational interest factor (which included interests in the social sciences, personal services, teaching, social services, and elementary education), both of which correlated significantly with all of the TEIQue variables (well-being, self-control, emotionality, sociability, and global trait EI). Following bivariate genetic analyses, most of the significant phenotypic correlations were found to also have significant genetic correlations as well as significant non-shared (unique) environmental correlations. PMID:25743745

  12. Genetic and environmental factors in vascular dementia: an update of blood brain barrier dysfunction.

    PubMed

    Srinivasan, Vivek; Braidy, Nady; Chan, Eunice K W; Xu, Ying-Hua; Chan, Daniel K Y

    2016-05-01

    Vascular dementia (VaD) describes a combination of both cognitive and behavioural manifestations associated with variable brain lesions of vascular origin. While vascular risk factors have been implicated in VaD, the relationship is most evident when the factors are considered together and not individually. This review will examine the significance of the integrity of blood brain barrier (BBB) tight junction (TJ) proteins - occludin and claudins in the pathophysiology of VaD. Specifically, some of the genetic contributors to VaD, namely those responsible for the integrity of the BBB, will be reviewed in detail. Moreover, environmental factors will be considered in conjunction with these genes to examine how the interaction of environmental and genetic factors contributes to one's susceptibility to VaD. PMID:26859837

  13. Expression studies of neuronatin in prenatal and postnatal rat pituitary.

    PubMed

    Kanno, Naoko; Higuchi, Masashi; Yoshida, Saishu; Yako, Hideji; Chen, Mo; Ueharu, Hiroki; Nishimura, Naoto; Kato, Takako; Kato, Yukio

    2016-05-01

    The pituitary gland, an indispensable endocrine organ that synthesizes and secretes pituitary hormones, develops with the support of many factors. Among them, neuronatin (NNAT), which was discovered in the neonatal mouse brain as a factor involved in neural development, has subsequently been revealed to be coded by an abundantly expressing gene in the pituitary gland but its role remains elusive. We analyze the expression profile of Nnat and the localization of its product during rat pituitary development. The level of Nnat expression was high during the embryonic period but remarkably decreased after birth. Immunohistochemistry demonstrated that NNAT appeared in the SOX2-positive stem/progenitor cells in the developing pituitary primordium on rat embryonic day 11.5 (E11.5) and later in the majority of SOX2/PROP1 double-positive cells on E13.5. Thereafter, during pituitary embryonic development, Nnat expression was observed in some stem/progenitor cells, proliferating cells and terminally differentiating cells. In postnatal pituitaries, NNAT-positive cells decreased in number, with most coexpressing Sox2 or Pit1, suggesting a similar role for NNAT to that during the embryonic period. NNAT was widely localized in mitochondria, peroxisomes and lysosomes, in addition to the endoplasmic reticulum but not in the Golgi. The present study thus demonstrated the variability in expression of NNAT-positive cells in rat embryonic and postnatal pituitaries and the intracellular localization of NNAT. Further investigations to obtain functional evidence for NNAT are a prerequisite. PMID:26613603

  14. Placental Transfer of Antidepressant Medications: Implications for Postnatal Adaptation Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Ewing, Grace; Tatarchuk, Yekaterina; Appleby, Dina; Kim, Deborah

    2015-01-01

    Seven to thirteen percent of women are either prescribed or taking (depending on the study) an antidepressant during pregnancy [1]. Although generally low risk, antidepressants have been associated with postnatal adaptation syndrome [2]. Because antidepressants freely cross into the intrauterine environment, it is our aim to summarize the current findings on placental transfer of antidepressants. The antidepressants reviewed are limited to those that are commonly prescribed to the pregnant patient suffering from depression or anxiety. The biological mechanisms regulating placental transport are both complex and multi-determined. Placental anatomy and pharmacokinetics are reviewed along with the latest advances in the understanding of active cellular molecular transport and placental metabolism. In addition, we consider how non-placental and fetal factors contribute to the distribution of drugs across the placenta. The data on placental passage of antidepressants is discussed in the context of the three commonly used research methodologies: animal models, ex vivo perfusion models, and in vivo models. The goal of this review is to inform clinical decision-making by improving understanding of how placental and pharmacokinetic factors relate to the data on antidepressant drug transfer and postnatal adaptation syndrome (PNAS). Incorporating maternal and fetal genetics will be the next step in assisting clinicians to make more informed choices regarding which antidepressants are the least likely to have extensive fetal exposure. PMID:25711391

  15. Prenatal and postnatal cocaine exposure predict teen cocaine use

    PubMed Central

    Delaney-Black, Virginia; Chiodo, Lisa M.; Hannigan, John H.; Greenwald, Mark K.; Janisse, James; Patterson, Grace; Huestis, Marilyn A.; Partridge, Robert T.; Ager, Joel; Sokol, Robert J.

    2015-01-01

    Preclinical studies have identified alterations in cocaine and alcohol self-administration and behavioral responses to pharmacological challenges in adolescent offspring following prenatal exposure. To date, no published human studies have evaluated the relation between prenatal cocaine exposure and postnatal adolescent cocaine use. Human studies of prenatal cocaine-exposed children have also noted an increase in behaviors previously associated with substance use/abuse in teens and young adults, specifically childhood and teen externalizing behaviors, impulsivity, and attention problems. Despite these findings, human research has not addressed prior prenatal exposure as a potential predictor of teen drug use behavior. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the relations between prenatal cocaine exposure and teen cocaine use in a prospective longitudinal cohort (n = 316) that permitted extensive control for child, parent and community risk factors. Logistic regression analyses and Structural Equation Modeling revealed that both prenatal exposure and postnatal parent/caregiver cocaine use were uniquely related to teen use of cocaine at age 14 years. Teen cocaine use was also directly predicted by teen community violence exposure and caregiver negativity, and was indirectly related to teen community drug exposure. These data provide further evidence of the importance of prenatal exposure, family and community factors in the intergenerational transmission of teen/young adult substance abuse/use. PMID:20609384

  16. A BRIEF TARGETED REVIEW OF SUSCEPTIBILITY FACTORS, ENVIRONMENTAL EXPOSURES, ASHTMA INCIDENCE, AND RECOMMENDATIONS FOR FUTURE ASHTMA INCIDENCE RESEARCH

    EPA Science Inventory

    Genetics, obesity, age, and lifestyle are major susceptibility factors in the induction of asthma and can interact with environmental exposures either synergistically or antagonistically. Different environmental exposures that increase or decrease the likelihood of developing as...

  17. Environmental Factors Affecting the Daily Functioning of Jordanian Individuals with Multiple Sclerosis

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Occupational therapists must consider the hindering and facilitating effects of the environment on patients' functional performance when planning therapeutic interventions. The purpose of this study was to explore environmental factors that hinder, and available services that facilitate, the daily functioning of Jordanian individuals with multiple sclerosis (MS) as perceived by the patients themselves. A sample of 103 Jordanian individuals with MS completed a questionnaire on hindering environmental factors and facilitative services. Factors and services were identified according to their description in the World Health Organization's International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health. Environmental factors that were reported by the participants to be most hindering to their daily functioning were stores and malls (74.2%), noise (87.1%), attitudes of immediate family (52.0%), and government policies and regulations (52.2%). Moreover, the participants reported that psychological services were the least available facilitative services in the community (83.8%). Weak-to-moderate but significant correlations were found between a number of demographic variables and perceived hindering factors. The study results indicate that hindering factors, facilitative services, and demographic variables should be given greater attention by rehabilitation practitioners (especially occupational therapists) when planning intervention programs for Jordanian individuals with MS. PMID:24453749

  18. The structure of genetic and environmental risk factors for fears and phobias

    PubMed Central

    Loken, E. K.; Hettema, J.M.; Aggen, S.H.; Kendler, K. S.

    2014-01-01

    Background Although prior genetic studies of interview-assessed fears and phobias have shown that genetic factors predispose individuals to fears and phobias, they have been restricted to the DSM-III to DSM-IV aggregated subtypes of phobias rather than to individual fearful and phobic stimuli. Method We examined the lifetime history of fears and/or phobias in response to 21 individual phobic stimuli in 4067 personally interviewed twins from same-sex pairs from the Virginia Adult Twin Study of Psychiatric and Substance Abuse Disorders (VATSPSUD). We performed multivariate statistical analyses using Mx and Mplus. Results The best-fitting model for the 21 phobic stimuli included four genetic factors (agora-social-acrophobia, animal phobia, blood-injection-illness phobia and claustrophobia) and three environmental factors (agora-social-hospital phobia, animal phobia, and situational phobia). Conclusions This study provides the first view of the architecture of genetic and environmental risk factors for phobic disorders and their subtypes. The genetic factors of the phobias support the DSM-IV and DSM-5 constructs of animal and blood-injection-injury phobias but do not support the separation of agoraphobia from social phobia. The results also do not show a coherent genetic factor for the DSM-IV and DSM-5 situational phobia. Finally, the patterns of co-morbidity across individual fears and phobias produced by genetic and environmental influences differ appreciably. PMID:24384457

  19. LUNG CANCER IN NEVER SMOKERS: CLINICAL EPIDEMIOLOGY AND ENVIRONMENTAL RISK FACTORS

    PubMed Central

    Samet, Jonathan M.; Avila-Tang, Erika; Boffetta, Paolo; Hannan, Lindsay M.; Olivo-Marston, Susan; Thun, Michael J.; Rudin, Charles M.

    2011-01-01

    More than 161,000 lung cancer deaths are projected to occur in the U.S. in 2008. Of these, an estimated 10–15% will be caused by factors other than active smoking, corresponding to 16,000–24,000 deaths annually. Thus lung cancer in never smokers would rank among the most common causes of cancer mortality in the U.S. if considered to be a separate category. Slightly more than half of the lung cancers caused by factors other than active smoking occur in never smokers. As summarized in the accompanying article, lung cancers that occur in never smokers differ from those that occur in smokers in their molecular profile and response to targeted therapy. These recent laboratory and clinical observations highlight the importance of defining the genetic and environmental factors responsible for the development of lung cancer in never-smokers. This article summarizes available data on the clinical epidemiology of lung cancer in never smokers, and the several environmental risk factors that population-based research has implicated in the etiology of these cancers. Primary factors closely tied to lung cancer in never smokers include exposure to known and suspected carcinogens including radon, second-hand tobacco smoke, and other indoor air pollutants. Several other exposures have been implicated. However, a large fraction of lung cancers occurring in never-smokers cannot be definitively associated with established environmental risk factors, highlighting the need for additional epidemiologic research in this area. PMID:19755391

  20. Deletion of neurturin impairs development of cholinergic nerves and heart rate control in postnatal mouse hearts.

    PubMed

    Downs, Anthony M; Jalloh, Hawa B; Prater, Kayla J; Fregoso, Santiago P; Bond, Cherie E; Hampton, Thomas G; Hoover, Donald B

    2016-05-01

    The neurotrophic factor neurturin is required for normal cholinergic innervation of adult mouse heart and bradycardic responses to vagal stimulation. Our goals were to determine effects of neurturin deletion on development of cardiac chronotropic and dromotropic functions, vagal baroreflex response, and cholinergic nerve density in nodal regions of postnatal mice. Experiments were performed on postnatal C57BL/6 wild-type (WT) and neurturin knockout (KO) mice. Serial electrocardiograms were recorded noninvasively from conscious pups using an ECGenie apparatus. Mice were treated with atenolol to evaluate and block sympathetic effects on heart rate (HR) and phenylephrine (PE) to stimulate the baroreflex. Immunohistochemistry was used to label cholinergic nerves in paraffin sections. WT and KO mice showed similar age-dependent increases in HR and decreases in PR interval between postnatal days (P) 2.5 and 21. Treatment with atenolol reduced HR significantly in WT and KO pups at P7.5. PE caused a reflex bradycardia that was significantly smaller in KO pups. Cholinergic nerve density was significantly less in nodal regions of P7.5 KO mice. We conclude that cholinergic nerves have minimal influence on developmental changes in HR and PR, QRS, and QTc intervals in mouse pups. However, cholinergic nerves mediate reflex bradycardia by 1 week postnatally. Deletion of neurturin impairs cholinergic innervation of the heart and the vagal efferent component of the baroreflex early during postnatal development. PMID:27162260

  1. Epigenetic Upregulation of Corticotrophin-Releasing Hormone Mediates Postnatal Maternal Separation-Induced Memory Deficiency

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Aiyun; Nie, Wenying; Li, Haixia; Hou, Yuhua; Yu, Zhen; Fan, Qing; Sun, Ruopeng

    2014-01-01

    Accumulating evidences demonstrated that early postnatal maternal separation induced remarkable social and memory defects in the adult rodents. Early-life stress induced long-lasting functional adaptation of neuroendocrine hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, including neuropeptide corticotrophin-releasing hormone (CRH) in the brain. In the present study, a significantly increased hippocampal CRH was observed in the adult rats with postnatal maternal separation, and blockade of CRHR1 signaling significantly attenuated the hippocampal synaptic dysfunction and memory defects in the modeled rats. Postnatal maternal separation enduringly increased histone H3 acetylation and decreased cytosine methylation in Crh promoter region, resulting from the functional adaptation of several transcriptional factors, in the hippocampal CA1 of the modeled rats. Enriched environment reversed the epigenetic upregulation of CRH, and ameliorated the hippocampal synaptic dysfunction and memory defects in the adult rats with postnatal maternal separation. This study provided novel insights into the epigenetic mechanism underlying postnatal maternal separation-induced memory deficiency, and suggested environment enrichment as a potential approach for the treatment of this disorder. PMID:24718660

  2. Environmental Factors Related to Fungal Wound Contamination after Combat Trauma in Afghanistan, 2009–2011

    PubMed Central

    Rodriguez, Carlos J.; Weintrob, Amy C.; Shaikh, Faraz; Aggarwal, Deepak; Carson, M. Leigh; Murray, Clinton K.; Masuoka, Penny

    2015-01-01

    During the recent war in Afghanistan (2001–2014), invasive fungal wound infections (IFIs) among US combat casualties were associated with risk factors related to the mechanism and pattern of injury. Although previous studies recognized that IFI patients primarily sustained injuries in southern Afghanistan, environmental data were not examined. We compared environmental conditions of this region with those of an area in eastern Afghanistan that was not associated with observed IFIs after injury. A larger proportion of personnel injured in the south (61%) grew mold from wound cultures than those injured in the east (20%). In a multivariable analysis, the southern location, characterized by lower elevation, warmer temperatures, and greater isothermality, was independently associated with mold contamination of wounds. These environmental characteristics, along with known risk factors related to injury characteristics, may be useful in modeling the risk for IFIs after traumatic injury in other regions. PMID:26401897

  3. Relationships of individual, social, and physical environmental factors with older adults' television viewing time.

    PubMed

    Van Cauwenberg, Jelle; De Donder, Liesbeth; Clarys, Peter; De Bourdeaudhuij, Ilse; Owen, Neville; Dury, Sarah; De Witte, Nico; Buffel, Tine; Verté, Dominique; Deforche, Benedicte

    2014-10-01

    Sedentary behaviors (involving prolonged sitting) can be associated detrimentally with health outcomes. Older adults, the most sedentary age group, are especially at risk due to their high levels of television viewing time. This study examined individual, social, and physical environmental correlates of older adults' television viewing. Data on daily television viewing time, plus individual, social, and physical environmental factors were collected from 50,986 noninstitutionalized older adults (≥ 65 years) in Flanders (Belgium). The results showed significant relationships between television viewing time and individual, social, and physical environmental factors. Subgroups at risk for high levels of television viewing were those who were functionally limited, less educated, widowed, and (semi)urban-dwelling older adults. Our findings illustrate a cross-sectional link between older adults' television viewing time and social composition of their neighborhood, formal participation, access to alternative activities, and safety from crime. PMID:24231688

  4. Penna model in migrating population - Effect of environmental factor and genetics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Magdo?, Maria S.; Maksymowicz, Andrzej Z.

    1999-12-01

    We consider effect of possible migration between different locations on population evolution. Examples of different rules based on preferences to live in bigger or smaller populations, (or environmental capacity, or living space available), are discussed. In the limiting case of small migration intensity, each location evolves independently according to its local rules and conditions, as expected. With increasing migration, the population distribution between locations changes, including some critical behavior of extinction of population in some locations for specific set of the rules. Then the deserted location may become populated again if the migration is still on increase as a result of a pressure to move. Presented version is devoted to the migration controlled exclusively by environmental factor, yet the model is primarily designed to describe influence of other factors which may control migrating processes such as inherited mutation load, age, or other parameters associated either with individuals or the specific location, races mixing, or recovery of environmental capacity.

  5. ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS INFLUENCING METHANOGENESIS IN A SHALLOW ANOXIC AQUIFER: A FIELD AND LABORATORY STUDY

    EPA Science Inventory

    The environmental factors influencing methanogenesis in a shallow anoxic aquifer were probed in a combined field and laboratory study. Field data collected over a year revealed that "in situ" rates of methane production were depressed in winter and elevated in summer. Over the sa...

  6. Increasing Children's Physical Activity: Individual, Social, and Environmental Factors Associated with Walking to and from School

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Trapp, Georgina S. A.; Giles-Corti, Billie; Christian, Hayley E.; Bulsara, Max; Timperio, Anna F.; McCormack, Gavin R.; Villaneuva, Karen P.

    2012-01-01

    Background. Efforts to increase the prevalence of children's active school transport require evidence to inform the development of comprehensive interventions. This study used a multilevel ecological framework to investigate individual, social, and environmental factors associated with walking to and from school among elementary school-aged…

  7. Impact of Environmental Factors on Community Participation of Persons with an Intellectual Disability: A Systematic Review

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Verdonschot, Manon M. L.; de Witte, L. P.; Reichrath, E.; Buntinx, W. H. E.; Curfs, L. M. G.

    2009-01-01

    Study Design: A systematic review of the literature. Objectives: To describe which environmental factors have an impact on community participation of persons with an intellectual disability. Methods: A systematic literature search was conducted for the period of 1996-2006 in Pubmed, CINAHL and PSYCINFO. Search terms were derived from the

  8. Moral Reasoning Patterns and Influential Factors in the Context of Environmental Problems

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tuncay, Busra; Yilmaz-Tuzun, Ozgul; Teksoz, Gaye Tuncer

    2012-01-01

    This study investigated pre-service science teachers' (PSTs') moral reasoning patterns and the factors underlying these reasoning patterns. Local and non-local environmental dilemmas were used to examine moral reasoning patterns. An explanatory design was used with the collection and analysis of quantitative data, which was subsequently refined…

  9. Environmental Factors Item Development for Persons With Stroke, Traumatic Brain Injury, and Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Heinemann, Allen W.; Magasi, Susan; Hammel, Joy; Carlozzi, Noelle E.; Garcia, Sofia F.; Hahn, Elizabeth A.; Lai, Jin-Shei; Tulsky, David; Gray, David B.; Hollingsworth, Holly; Jerousek, Sara

    2015-01-01

    Objectives To describe methods used in operationalizing environmental factors; to describe the results of a research project to develop measures of environmental factors that affect participation; and to define an initial item set of facilitators and barriers to participation after stroke, traumatic brain injury, and spinal cord injury. Design Instrument development included an extensive literature review, item classification and selection, item writing, and cognitive testing following the approach of the Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System. Setting Community. Participants Content area and outcome measurement experts (n=10) contributed to instrument development; individuals (n=200) with the target conditions participated in focus groups and in cognitive testing (n=15). Interventions None. Main Outcome Measures Environmental factor items were categorized in 6 domains: assistive technology; built and natural environment; social environment; services, systems, and policies; access to information and technology; and economic quality of life. Results We binned 2273 items across the 6 domains, winnowed this pool to 291 items for cognitive testing, and recommended 274 items for pilot data collection. Conclusions Five of the 6 domains correspond closely to the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health taxonomy of environmental factors; the sixth domain, economic quality of life, reflects an important construct that reflects financial resources that affect participation. Testing with a new and larger sample is underway to evaluate reliability, validity, and sensitivity. PMID:24378804

  10. Psychosocial, Environmental and Behavioral Factors Associated with Bone Health in Middle-School Girls

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sharma, Shreela V.; Hoelscher, Deanna M.; Kelder, Steven H.; Day, R. Sue; Hergenroeder, Albert

    2009-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to identify the psychosocial, environmental and behavioral factors associated with calcium intake, physical activity and bone health in a cohort of adolescent girls. Baseline data (N = 718 girls, mean age: 11.6 plus or minus 0.4 years) from the Incorporating More Physical Activity and Calcium in Teens (IMPACT) study…

  11. BOVINE RESPIRATORY DISEASE IN FEEDLOT CATTLE: I. ENVIRONMENTAL, GENETIC AND ECONOMIC FACTORS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The objective of this study was to characterize genetic, environmental and economic factors related to the incidence of bovine respiratory disease (BRD) in feedlot calves. Records from 18,112 calves representing nine breeds (Angus, Braunvieh, Charolais, Gelbvieh, Hereford, Limousin, Pinzgauer, Red ...

  12. Psychosocial, Environmental and Behavioral Factors Associated with Bone Health in Middle-School Girls

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sharma, Shreela V.; Hoelscher, Deanna M.; Kelder, Steven H.; Day, R. Sue; Hergenroeder, Albert

    2009-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to identify the psychosocial, environmental and behavioral factors associated with calcium intake, physical activity and bone health in a cohort of adolescent girls. Baseline data (N = 718 girls, mean age: 11.6 plus or minus 0.4 years) from the Incorporating More Physical Activity and Calcium in Teens (IMPACT) study

  13. Perceived Environmental and Personal Factors Associated with Walking and Cycling for Transportation in Taiwanese Adults

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Yung; Wang, I-Ting; Hsu, Hsiu-Hua; Chang, Shao-Hsi

    2015-01-01

    This study examined perceived environmental and personal factors associated with walking and cycling as means of transportation for Taiwanese adults. A random-digit-dialing telephone-based cross-sectional survey was conducted with Taiwanese adults aged 20 to 64 years. Data on time spent walking and cycling for transportation and perceptions of neighborhood environment and personal characteristics were obtained from 1065 adults by using the International Physical Activity Questionnaire-long version and its environmental module. Adjusted binary logistic regression was performed. The results showed that, after adjusting potential confounders, common and different personal and perceived environmental factors were associated with walking and cycling for transportation. For common personal factors, adults who had employment were less likely to engage in 150 min of walking per week (odds ratio [OR] = 0.41; 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.27–0.62) and to use cycling as a means of transportation (OR = 0.51; 95% CI: 0.32–0.79). For common perceived environmental factors, adults who perceived good connectivity of streets were more likely to walk (OR = 1.95; 95% CI: 1.20–3.16) and cycle (OR = 2.02; 95% CI: 1.16–3.54) for transportation. Targeting employed adults and improving the connectivity of streets should be a priority for developing transport policies and intervention strategies to promote active transportation. PMID:25689349

  14. Agri-Environmental Resource Management by Large-Scale Collective Action: Determining KEY Success Factors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Uetake, Tetsuya

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: Large-scale collective action is necessary when managing agricultural natural resources such as biodiversity and water quality. This paper determines the key factors to the success of such action. Design/Methodology/Approach: This paper analyses four large-scale collective actions used to manage agri-environmental resources in Canada and…

  15. Environmental factors impacting response to bovine viral diarrhea vaccines in Angus calves

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The objective of this study was to evaluate the impact of environmental factors on the serological response to commercial bovine viral diarrhea type 2 (BVDV2) vaccinations in Angus cattle for inclusion as fixed effects into subsequent genetic evaluations for response to vaccination. Age of calf was...

  16. Perceived environmental and personal factors associated with walking and cycling for transportation in Taiwanese adults.

    PubMed

    Liao, Yung; Wang, I-Ting; Hsu, Hsiu-Hua; Chang, Shao-Hsi

    2015-02-01

    This study examined perceived environmental and personal factors associated with walking and cycling as means of transportation for Taiwanese adults. A random-digit-dialing telephone-based cross-sectional survey was conducted with Taiwanese adults aged 20 to 64 years. Data on time spent walking and cycling for transportation and perceptions of neighborhood environment and personal characteristics were obtained from 1065 adults by using the International Physical Activity Questionnaire-long version and its environmental module. Adjusted binary logistic regression was performed. The results showed that, after adjusting potential confounders, common and different personal and perceived environmental factors were associated with walking and cycling for transportation. For common personal factors, adults who had employment were less likely to engage in 150 min of walking per week (odds ratio [OR] = 0.41; 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.27-0.62) and to use cycling as a means of transportation (OR = 0.51; 95% CI: 0.32-0.79). For common perceived environmental factors, adults who perceived good connectivity of streets were more likely to walk (OR = 1.95; 95% CI: 1.20-3.16) and cycle (OR = 2.02; 95% CI: 1.16-3.54) for transportation. Targeting employed adults and improving the connectivity of streets should be a priority for developing transport policies and intervention strategies to promote active transportation. PMID:25689349

  17. Environmental factors impacting response to bovine viral diarrhea vaccines in Angus calves

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The objective of this study was to evaluate the impact of environmental factors on the serological response to commercial bovine viral diarrhea type 2 (BVDV2) vaccinations in Angus cattle for inclusion as fixed effects into subsequent genetic evaluations for response to vaccination. This study util...

  18. ENVIRONMENTAL FACTORS INFLUENCING METHANOGENESIS IN A SHALLOW ANOXIC AQUIFER: A FIELD AND LABORATORY STUDY

    EPA Science Inventory

    The environmental factors influencing methanogenesis in a shallow anoxic aquifer were probed in a combined field and laboratory study. Field data collected over a year revealed that in situ rates of methane production were depressed in winter and elevated in summer. Over the same...

  19. Environmental Factors Affecting Computer Assisted Language Learning Success: A Complex Dynamic Systems Conceptual Model

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marek, Michael W.; Wu, Wen-Chi Vivian

    2014-01-01

    This conceptual, interdisciplinary inquiry explores Complex Dynamic Systems as the concept relates to the internal and external environmental factors affecting computer assisted language learning (CALL). Based on the results obtained by de Rosnay ["World Futures: The Journal of General Evolution", 67(4/5), 304-315 (2011)], who observed…

  20. Description of Environmental Factors in Schools: Lessons from a Study in North-West Spain

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Comesana, Julia Crespo; Juste, Margarita Pino

    2007-01-01

    The objective of this study is to offer a view on the different environmental factors that affect health (sound, light, colour, temperature) in the design, planning and organization of school premises. To achieve this, the authors first outline the problems leading to unhealthy situations. They subsequently analyse all the building and planning…

  1. Impact of Environmental Factors on Community Participation of Persons with an Intellectual Disability: A Systematic Review

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Verdonschot, Manon M. L.; de Witte, L. P.; Reichrath, E.; Buntinx, W. H. E.; Curfs, L. M. G.

    2009-01-01

    Study Design: A systematic review of the literature. Objectives: To describe which environmental factors have an impact on community participation of persons with an intellectual disability. Methods: A systematic literature search was conducted for the period of 1996-2006 in Pubmed, CINAHL and PSYCINFO. Search terms were derived from the…

  2. Description of Environmental Factors in Schools: Lessons from a Study in North-West Spain

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Comesana, Julia Crespo; Juste, Margarita Pino

    2007-01-01

    The objective of this study is to offer a view on the different environmental factors that affect health (sound, light, colour, temperature) in the design, planning and organization of school premises. To achieve this, the authors first outline the problems leading to unhealthy situations. They subsequently analyse all the building and planning

  3. COMPARISON OF R- AND Q-MODES IN TARGET TRANSFORMATION FACTOR ANALYSIS FOR RESOLVING ENVIRONMENTAL DATA

    EPA Science Inventory

    A target transformation factor analysis has been used for the quantitative resolution of environmental data. The initial studies have utilized the correlation between samples as the matrix defining the relationships within the data. The analysis of this matrix is a Q-mode analysi...

  4. The Direct and Indirect Effects of Environmental Factors on Nurturing Intellectual Giftedness

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Al-Shabatat, Ahmad Mohammad; Abbas, Merza; Ismail, Hairul Nizam

    2009-01-01

    Many people believe that environmental factors promote giftedness and invest in many programs to adopt gifted students providing them with challenging activities. Intellectual giftedness is founded on fluid intelligence and extends to more specific abilities through the growth and inputs from the environment. Acknowledging the roles played by the…

  5. Gene-Environment Interplay in Internalizing Disorders: Consistent Findings across Six Environmental Risk Factors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hicks, Brian M.; Dirago, Ana C.; Iacono, William G.; McGue, Matt

    2009-01-01

    Background: Behavior genetic methods can help to elucidate gene-environment (G-E) interplay in the development of internalizing (INT) disorders (i.e., major depression and anxiety disorders). To date, however, no study has conducted a comprehensive analysis examining multiple environmental risk factors with the purpose of delineating general…

  6. A Systematic Review of Methodology: Time Series Regression Analysis for Environmental Factors and Infectious Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Imai, Chisato; Hashizume, Masahiro

    2015-01-01

    Background: Time series analysis is suitable for investigations of relatively direct and short-term effects of exposures on outcomes. In environmental epidemiology studies, this method has been one of the standard approaches to assess impacts of environmental factors on acute non-infectious diseases (e.g. cardiovascular deaths), with conventionally generalized linear or additive models (GLM and GAM). However, the same analysis practices are often observed with infectious diseases despite of the substantial differences from non-infectious diseases that may result in analytical challenges. Methods: Following the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses guidelines, systematic review was conducted to elucidate important issues in assessing the associations between environmental factors and infectious diseases using time series analysis with GLM and GAM. Published studies on the associations between weather factors and malaria, cholera, dengue, and influenza were targeted. Findings: Our review raised issues regarding the estimation of susceptible population and exposure lag times, the adequacy of seasonal adjustments, the presence of strong autocorrelations, and the lack of a smaller observation time unit of outcomes (i.e. daily data). These concerns may be attributable to features specific to infectious diseases, such as transmission among individuals and complicated causal mechanisms. Conclusion: The consequence of not taking adequate measures to address these issues is distortion of the appropriate risk quantifications of exposures factors. Future studies should pay careful attention to details and examine alternative models or methods that improve studies using time series regression analysis for environmental determinants of infectious diseases. PMID:25859149

  7. Which Environmental Factors Have the Highest Impact on the Performance of People Experiencing Difficulties in Capacity?

    PubMed Central

    Loidl, Verena; Oberhauser, Cornelia; Ballert, Carolina; Coenen, Michaela; Cieza, Alarcos; Sabariego, Carla

    2016-01-01

    Disability is understood by the World Health Organization (WHO) as the outcome of the interaction between a health condition and personal and environmental factors. Comprehensive data about environmental factors is therefore essential to understand and influence disability. We aimed to identify which environmental factors have the highest impact on the performance of people with mild, moderate and severe difficulties in capacity, who are at risk of experiencing disability to different extents, using data from a pilot study of the WHO Model Disability Survey in Cambodia and random forest regression. Hindering or facilitating aspects of places to socialize in community activities, transportation and natural environment as well as use and need of personal assistance and use of medication on a regular basis were the most important environmental factors across groups. Hindering or facilitating aspects of the general environment were the most relevant in persons experiencing mild levels of difficulties in capacity, while social support, attitudes of others and use of medication on a regular basis were highly relevant for the performance of persons experiencing moderate to higher levels of difficulties in capacity. Additionally, we corroborate the high importance of the use and need of assistive devices for people with severe difficulties in capacity. PMID:27077872

  8. ENVIRONMENTAL, GENETIC AND SOCIAL FACTORS AFFECTING THE EXPRESSION OF ESTRUS IN BEEF COWS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic, social and environmental factors affecting behavioral estrus were evaluated in Angus (n = 10), Brahman (n = 10) and Senepol (n = 10) cows during a synchronized estrus and subsequent spontaneous estrus. Cows were equally stratified by breed to two groups of 15. Both groups were pre-synchro...

  9. The Relationship between Environmental Factors and Usage Behaviors at "Hole-in-the-Wall" Computers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    DeBoer, Jennifer

    2009-01-01

    This paper gathers and analyzes self-reported user behavior data for public computers installed in varied neighborhoods in India to explore the relationship between environmental factors such as urbanicity and reported usage behaviors. There is evidence of large differences in usage behavior between urban and non-urban sites. Children at urban…

  10. Agri-Environmental Resource Management by Large-Scale Collective Action: Determining KEY Success Factors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Uetake, Tetsuya

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: Large-scale collective action is necessary when managing agricultural natural resources such as biodiversity and water quality. This paper determines the key factors to the success of such action. Design/Methodology/Approach: This paper analyses four large-scale collective actions used to manage agri-environmental resources in Canada and

  11. Genetic and Environmental Factors That Impact Gestation Length in Dairy Cattle

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic and environmental factors that might affect gestation length (GL) were investigated. Data from over 9 million parturitions from 1999 through 2006 for 7 dairy breeds were assembled from lactation, reproduction, and dystocia records from across the United States. Effects examined were year of ...

  12. Estimating interaction between genetic and environmental risk factors efficiency of sampling designs within a cohort

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Large prospective cohorts originally assembled to study environmental risk factors are increasingly exploited to study gene-environment interactions. Given the cost of genetic studies in large numbers of subjects, being able to select a sub-sample for genotyping that contains most of the information...

  13. On-the-Job Stress and Burnout: Contributing Factors and Environmental Alternatives in Educational Settings.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Beasley, Carol R.; And Others

    Regular and special education teachers were compared to determine the extent of stress and burnout within these groups, environmental factors that were involved, and teachers' and administrators' views on feasible ways to reduce stress. A sample of regular and special education teachers in Utah (n=606) responded to 3 survey instruments: (1) the…

  14. The Relationship between Environmental Factors and Usage Behaviors at "Hole-in-the-Wall" Computers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    DeBoer, Jennifer

    2009-01-01

    This paper gathers and analyzes self-reported user behavior data for public computers installed in varied neighborhoods in India to explore the relationship between environmental factors such as urbanicity and reported usage behaviors. There is evidence of large differences in usage behavior between urban and non-urban sites. Children at urban

  15. Moral Reasoning Patterns and Influential Factors in the Context of Environmental Problems

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tuncay, Busra; Yilmaz-Tuzun, Ozgul; Teksoz, Gaye Tuncer

    2012-01-01

    This study investigated pre-service science teachers' (PSTs') moral reasoning patterns and the factors underlying these reasoning patterns. Local and non-local environmental dilemmas were used to examine moral reasoning patterns. An explanatory design was used with the collection and analysis of quantitative data, which was subsequently refined

  16. The Direct and Indirect Effects of Environmental Factors on Nurturing Intellectual Giftedness

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Al-Shabatat, Ahmad Mohammad; Abbas, Merza; Ismail, Hairul Nizam

    2011-01-01

    Many people believe that environmental factors promote giftedness and invest in many programs to adopt gifted students providing them with challenging activities. Intellectual giftedness is founded on fluid intelligence and extends to more specific abilities through the growth and inputs from the environment. Acknowledging the roles played by the…

  17. Evaluation of the perinatal and postnatal effects of uranium in mice upon oral administration

    SciTech Connect

    Domingo, J.L.; Ortega, A.; Paternain, J.L.; Corbella, J. )

    1989-11-01

    Perinatal and postnatal studies were performed in Swiss mice given uranium--as uranyl acetate dihydrate--at daily dosages of 0, 0.05, 0.5, 5, and 50 mg/kg from day 13 of pregnancy until weaning of the litters on day 21 post-birth. Postnatal development was monitored after 0, 4, and 21 d of lactation. At doses of 0, 0.05, 0.5, and 5 mg/kg.d, treatment with uranium had no significant effect on sex ratios, mean litter size, pup body weight, or pup body length throughout lactation. Significant decreases in the mean litter size on postnatal day 21, and in the viability and lactation indices were observed at the 50 mg/kg.d dose level. When comparing the no observable effect level (NOEL) for reproductive effects of uranium, with the concentrations of the metal usually ingested by men, a safety factor below 1,000 can be estimated.

  18. Prenatal and postnatal anxiety in Mexican women giving birth in Los Angeles.

    PubMed

    Engle, P L; Scrimshaw, S C; Zambrana, R E; Dunkel-Schetter, C

    1990-01-01

    Examined psychosocial factors related to prenatal and postnatal anxiety in 291 primiparous Mexican women giving birth in Los Angeles. Characteristics of health care providers preferred by more anxious and less anxious women were also assessed. Higher prenatal anxiety was associated with less desire for an active role during labor, lower assertiveness, higher pain expectation at delivery, lack of support from family members other than the husband, and preferences for health care providers who are female and Latino. All groups of women preferred health care providers who provided good medical explanations and who were knowledgeable, friendly, and sympathetic. Postnatal anxiety was significantly lower than prenatal anxiety. Negative attitudes toward the baby and number of complications during labor and delivery, however, were related to postnatal anxiety adjusted for prenatal anxiety. PMID:2340819

  19. Quantifying Effects of Environmental and Geographical Factors on Patterns of Genetic Differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Cheng-Ruei; Mitchell-Olds, Thomas

    2011-01-01

    Elucidating the factors influencing genetic differentiation is an important task in biology, and the relative contribution from natural selection and genetic drift has long been debated. In this study, we used a regression-based approach to simultaneously estimate the quantitative contributions of environmental adaptation and isolation by distance on genetic variation in Boechera stricta, a wild relative of Arabidopsis. Patterns of discrete and continuous genetic differentiation coexist within this species. For the discrete differentiation between two major genetic groups, environment has larger contribution than geography, and we also identified a significant environment-by-geography interaction effect. Elsewhere in the species range, we found a latitudinal cline of genetic variation reflecting only isolation by distance. To further confirm the effect of environmental selection on genetic divergence, we identified the specific environmental variables predicting local genotypes in allopatric and sympatric regions. Water availability was identified as the possible cause of differential local adaptation in both geographic regions, confirming the role of environmental adaptation in driving and maintaining genetic differentiation between the two major genetic groups. In addition, the environment-by-geography interaction is further confirmed by the finding that water availability is represented by different environmental factors in the allopatric and sympatric regions. In conclusion, this study found that geographical and environmental factors together created stronger and more discrete genetic differentiation than isolation by distance alone, which only produced a gradual, clinal pattern of genetic variation. These findings emphasize the importance of environmental selection in shaping patterns of species-wide genetic variation in the natural environment. PMID:21999331

  20. Pre- and Postnatal Influences on Preschool Mental Health: A Large-Scale Cohort Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Robinson, Monique; Oddy, Wendy H.; Li, Jianghong; Kendall, Garth E.; de Klerk, Nicholas H.; Silburn, Sven R.; Zubrick, Stephen R.; Newnham, John P.; Stanley, Fiona J.; Mattes, Eugen

    2008-01-01

    Background: Methodological challenges such as confounding have made the study of the early determinants of mental health morbidity problematic. This study aims to address these challenges in investigating antenatal, perinatal and postnatal risk factors for the development of mental health problems in pre-school children in a cohort of Western

  1. Pre- and Postnatal Influences on Preschool Mental Health: A Large-Scale Cohort Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Robinson, Monique; Oddy, Wendy H.; Li, Jianghong; Kendall, Garth E.; de Klerk, Nicholas H.; Silburn, Sven R.; Zubrick, Stephen R.; Newnham, John P.; Stanley, Fiona J.; Mattes, Eugen

    2008-01-01

    Background: Methodological challenges such as confounding have made the study of the early determinants of mental health morbidity problematic. This study aims to address these challenges in investigating antenatal, perinatal and postnatal risk factors for the development of mental health problems in pre-school children in a cohort of Western…

  2. Physiological and environmental factors associated with central fat distribution in pubertal girls.

    PubMed

    Suder, A; Plonka, M; Jagielski, P; Piorecka, B; Glodzik, J

    2015-06-01

    The aim of the work was to determine a degree of explanation of the variation of central fat distribution described by the waist-to-height ratio (WHtR) and waist circumference (WC) by both environmental and biological factors, including hormonal ones. The authors also intended to define the factors which are connected with a risk of abdominal obesity in girls. The study material includes a cross-sectional sample of 297 girls aged 9–16 years, examined in sport and regular schools in Cracow, Poland. Direct anthropometric measurements were done, breast development was assessed (Tanner stage) and leptin and ghrelin concentration in blood serum was estimated (by RIA method). The girls’ lifestyles and socio-economic status were investigated through survey questionnaires. The stepwise descending regression method was applied to evaluate a degree of WC, WHtR and BMI variation explanation. A logistic regression analysis was conducted to indicate factors connected with a risk of abdominal obesity (WHtR ³ 0.50) by calculating odds ratio (OR) and 95% confidence interval (CI). Variation of WC and WHtR was explained in, respectively, 53% and 44% by biological factors i.e. age, body height, the Tanner stage and blood serum leptin and ghrelin concentration as well as by environmental factors i.e. obesity prevalence in fathers and the girls’ high physical activity. Variation of BMI was explained in 56% by a similar set of variables, excluding the level of physical activity. The biological factors were the highest determinants of an adipose tissue distribution type in the girls. Besides biological factors a significant role was also played by the environmental ones: obesity prevalence in fathers and high level of physical activity. The waist to height ratio seemed to be a more sensitive identifier of environmental behaviours than the general adiposity index. PMID:26084228

  3. Postnatal depression among Sudanese women: prevalence and validation of the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale at 3 months postpartum

    PubMed Central

    Khalifa, Dina Sami; Glavin, Kari; Bjertness, Espen; Lien, Lars

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Postnatal depression (PND) rates in low-resource countries have reached levels between 4.9% and 59%. Maternal mental health has not been researched in Sudan, and there are no existing statistics on prevalence or significant risk factors for PND. Consequently, no screening test has been validated to screen for PND at the primary health care level. This study investigates the 3 months prevalence of PND and validates the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) against the Mini-International Neuropsychiatric Interview (MINI). Methodology Pregnant Sudanese women in the second and third trimesters were recruited to the study during routine antenatal care visits in two major maternity hospitals in Khartoum state. They were screened for PND at 3 months postpartum using the EPDS. Test positive women were matched with test negative women according to nearest date of birth. A clinical psychologist verified their depression status using the MINI. Results The follow-up rate was 79%. At a cutoff point of ≥12, the 3 months prevalence of PND was 9.2%. The sensitivity and specificity of the EPDS were 89% and 82%, respectively. The EPDS and MINI showed a strong positive relationship (odds ratio =36). The positive predictive value and negative predictive value, using this study’s prevalence, were 33% and 98.7%, respectively. The receiver operator characteristic analysis showed an area under the curve of 0.89. The cut-off point ≥12 was the most acceptable point as it had the lowest number needed to diagnose (1.4) and a false-positive rate of 18%. Conclusion The EPDS is a valid tool for screening for PND on a Sudanese population. It was accepted, easily administered, and understood by postnatal women. Health care personnel, especially village midwives, should be trained on screening and referral of depressed women for clinical evaluation and management. Due to limited resources available in Sudan, shorter screening tests need to be validated in the future. PMID:26185471

  4. Evaluation of variations and affecting factors of eco-environmental quality during urbanization.

    PubMed

    Cui, Erqian; Ren, Lijun; Sun, Haoyu

    2015-03-01

    Regional eco-environmental quality is the foundation of economic sustainable development and rational utilization of resources. It is necessary to understand and evaluate the regional eco-environmental quality correctly. Based on national remote sensing land use data, normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) data and some other statistical data, this paper established an eco-environmental quality index (EQI) model to evaluate the ecological status of Jinan from 2000 to 2011. The results of eco-environmental quality showed little variation, with EQI values ranged from 62.00 to 69.01. EQI of each region in Jinan firstly decreased sharply and then increased slowly with the development of local economy. Besides the spatial and temporal variations analysis, affecting factors of eco-environmental quality was also discussed in this article. According to the results of correlation and regression analysis, meteorological conditions (rainfall and sunshine duration) and industrial structure (the proportion of primary industry) had relatively high correlations with eco-environmental quality. To summarize, a better eco-environmental status is associated with increasing rainfall, shorter sunshine duration, and lower proportion of primary industry. This article aims to giving supporting data and decision-making bases to restore the ecological environment and promote the sustainable development of Jinan. PMID:25369921

  5. Fetal origins of hyperphagia, obesity, and hypertension and postnatal amplification by hypercaloric nutrition.

    PubMed

    Vickers, M H; Breier, B H; Cutfield, W S; Hofman, P L; Gluckman, P D

    2000-07-01

    Environmental factors and diet are generally believed to be accelerators of obesity and hypertension, but they are not the underlying cause. Our animal model of obesity and hypertension is based on the observation that impaired fetal growth has long-term clinical consequences that are induced by fetal programming. Using fetal undernutrition throughout pregnancy, we investigated whether the effects of fetal programming on adult obesity and hypertension are mediated by changes in insulin and leptin action and whether increased appetite may be a behavioral trigger of adult disease. Virgin Wistar rats were time mated and randomly assigned to receive food either ad libitum (AD group) or at 30% of ad libitum intake, or undernutrition (UN group). Offspring from UN mothers were significantly smaller at birth than AD offspring. At weaning, offspring were assigned to one of two diets [a control diet or a hypercaloric (30% fat) diet]. Food intake in offspring from UN mothers was significantly elevated at an early postnatal age. It increased further with advancing age and was amplified by hypercaloric nutrition. UN offspring also showed elevated systolic blood pressure and markedly increased fasting plasma insulin and leptin concentrations. This study is the first to demonstrate that profound adult hyperphagia is a consequence of fetal programming and a key contributing factor in adult pathophysiology. We hypothesize that hyperinsulinism and hyperleptinemia play a key role in the etiology of hyperphagia, obesity, and hypertension as a consequence of altered fetal development. PMID:10893326

  6. Plant community assembly at small scales: Spatial vs. environmental factors in a European grassland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horn, Sebastian; Hempel, Stefan; Ristow, Michael; Rillig, Matthias C.; Kowarik, Ingo; Caruso, Tancredi

    2015-02-01

    Dispersal limitation and environmental conditions are crucial drivers of plant species distribution and establishment. As these factors operate at different spatial scales, we asked: Do the environmental factors known to determine community assembly at broad scales operate at fine scales (few meters)? How much do these factors account for community variation at fine scales? In which way do biotic and abiotic interactions drive changes in species composition? We surveyed the plant community within a dry grassland along a very steep gradient of soil characteristics like pH and nutrients. We used a spatially explicit sampling design, based on three replicated macroplots of 15 × 15, 12 × 12 and 12 × 12 m in extent. Soil samples were taken to quantify several soil properties (carbon, nitrogen, plant available phosphorus, pH, water content and dehydrogenase activity as a proxy for overall microbial activity). We performed variance partitioning to assess the effect of these variables on plant composition and statistically controlled for spatial autocorrelation via eigenvector mapping. We also applied null model analysis to test for non-random patterns in species co-occurrence using randomization schemes that account for patterns expected under species interactions. At a fine spatial scale, environmental factors explained 18% of variation when controlling for spatial autocorrelation in the distribution of plant species, whereas purely spatial processes accounted for 14% variation. Null model analysis showed that species spatially segregated in a non-random way and these spatial patterns could be due to a combination of environmental filtering and biotic interactions. Our grassland study suggests that environmental factors found to be directly relevant in broad scale studies are present also at small scales, but are supplemented by spatial processes and more direct interactions like competition.

  7. [Darkling beetle community structure and its relations with environmental factors in Sidunzi of Yanchi, Ningxia, China].

    PubMed

    Yang, Gui-jun; He, Qi; Wang, Xin-pu

    2010-09-01

    From March to October 2009, a field survey was conducted on the darkling beetle community structure and related environmental factors in the desert grasslands with different vegetation cover and human disturbance intensity in Sidunzi of Yanchi, Ningxia, China. By using diversity index and canonical correspondence analysis (CCA) , the relationships between the beetle community structure and related environmental factors were analyzed. A total of 5431 individuals were collected, belonging to 20 species and 10 genera. Blaps femoralis femoralis, Microdera kraatzi kraatzi, and Platyope mongolica were the dominant species, accounting for 47.30%, 39.90%, and 3.59% of the total, respectively. CCA explained 100% of the correlations between the beetle species and related environmental factors, suggesting that the occurrence of the beetle species had close relations to the changes of related environmental factors. Among the environmental factors, the Shannon diversity index of plant community (HP), plant biomass (BP), and soil water content (SW) affected the beetle species occurrence most. The occurrence frequency of Mantichorula semenowi, Anatolica amoenula, A. sternalis, and A. gravidula was negatively correlated with BP and plant coverage (CP), and that of B. gobiensis, Cyphogenia chinensis, Gonocephalum reticuluatum, and Crypticus rufipes was positively correlated with plant density (DP) and SW. The distribution of P. mongolica, M. kraatzi kraatzi, Scytosoma pygmaeum, and B. kiritshenkoi showed a positive correlation to HP, and that of Eumylada oberbergeri, B. femoralis femoralis, and B. davidea showed a positive correlation to BP and CP. There was a significant positive correlation (r = 0.943, P = 0.005) between the beetle activity density and SW. The CCA ordination showed that the darkling beetles had different demands for multidimensional ecological resources in desert and semi-desert ecosystems. PMID:21265163

  8. Studying the Relative Strengths of Environmental Factors that Influence Echinoderm Body Size Trends

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Low, A.; Randhawa, S.; Heim, N. A.; Payne, J.

    2013-12-01

    Body size is often a useful metric in observing how a clade responds to environmental changes. Previous research has uncovered how environmental factors such as carbon dioxide and oxygen levels influence body size evolution. However, we wanted to look into how these natural factors interact and which factors seem to have a stronger relative influence on echinoderm body size. We analyzed carbon dioxide levels, a proxy for paleotemperature, oxygen levels, and sea level. Our research process involved measuring and calculating the volume of Phanerozoic echinoderm fossils recorded in the Treatise on Invertebrate Paleontology, plotting their mean volumes over various natural factors, and using statistical tools such as correlation tests and the PaleoTS statistical analysis software to compare the relative strengths of these factors. Furthermore, we divided our data into the following three subsets to uncover more specific relationships: 1) A set that included all data of the phylum Echinodermata 2) A set that focused on the two classes with the most recorded data, Echinoidea and Crinoidea 3) A set that focused on the crinoid specimens that originated in the Paleozoic and in the post-Paleozoic. In the first subset, echinoderms had the strongest correlation with carbon dioxide, a proxy for temperature, and possessed a weaker correlation with oxygen. In the second subset, we discovered that the echinoid data also possessed a strong correlation with carbon dioxide and a weaker correlation with oxygen. For crinoids, we found that the class as a whole showed no strong correlation with any measured environmental factors. However, when we divided the crinoids based on age, we found that both Paleozoic and post-Paleozoic crinoids individually correlated strongly with sea level. However, some uncertainty with this correlation arose as the comparison of the environmental correlate models suggested that an unbiased random walk was the best fit for the data. This stands as a sharp contrast to the strong evidence provided by the appropriate graphs and correlation tests that indicate strong, dominant relationships between body size and environmental factors. Thus, though further research is necessary to settle such uncertainty, we were able to identify, observe, and compare the diversity in body size responses to environmental factors within echinoderms.

  9. [Evaluation of the influence of physical environmental factors on morbidity among armed forces personnel].

    PubMed

    Rakhmanov, R S; Gadzhiibragimov, D A; Medzhidova, M A; Kudriavtseva, O A

    2009-01-01

    Under the conditions of hot and mountain-continental climate, the morbidity rates were estimated to be significantly lower than those in young men who had not been acclimatized or adapted to living conditions and in non-acclimatized men. A role of individual physical environmental factors (temperature, relative humidity, barometric pressure, average and maximum air speed) and integral exposure by the wind chill index (a combined impact of an air speed and ambient temperature) as risk factors to human health was defined. The mountain-continental climate showed a relationship of the influence of these factors to habitation at different altitudes. PMID:20000099

  10. Postnatal development of excitatory postsynaptic currents in nucleus accumbens medium spiny neurons.

    PubMed

    Zhang, L; Warren, R A

    2008-07-17

    We have recorded excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) evoked by local electrical stimulation in 243 nucleus accumbens (nAcb) neurons in vitro during postnatal development from the day of birth (postnatal day 0; P0) to P27 and in young adults rats (P59-P71). An EPSC sensitive to glutamatergic antagonists was found in all neurons. In the majority of cases (189/243), the EPSC had two distinct components: an early one sensitive to 6-cyano-7-nitroquinoxaline-2,3-dione (CNQX) and a late one that was sensitive to D-2-amino-5-phosphonovaleric acid (APV) showing that early and late components of the EPSC were mediated by AMPA/kainate (KA) and N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors respectively. During the first four postnatal days, the amplitudes of both the AMPA/KA and NMDA components of the EPSC were relatively small and then began to increase until the end of the second postnatal week. Whereas the amplitude of the early component appeared to stabilize from that point on, the late component began to decrease and became virtually undetectable in preparations from animals older than 3 weeks unless the AMPA/KA response was blocked with CNQX. In addition, the ratio between the amplitude of the NMDA and AMPA/KA receptor-mediated components of the EPSC followed a developmental pattern parallel to that of the NMDA receptor component showing an increase during the first two postnatal weeks followed by a decrease. Together, these results show that, during postnatal development, there is a period when NMDA receptor-mediated EPSC are preeminent and that time frame might represent a period during which the development of the nAcb might be sensitive to environmental manipulation. PMID:18554817

  11. Genetic, metabolic and environmental factors involved in the development of liver cirrhosis in Mexico.

    PubMed

    Ramos-Lopez, Omar; Martinez-Lopez, Erika; Roman, Sonia; Fierro, Nora A; Panduro, Arturo

    2015-11-01

    Liver cirrhosis (LC) is a chronic illness caused by inflammatory responses and progressive fibrosis. Globally, the most common causes of chronic liver disease include persistent alcohol abuse, followed by viral hepatitis infections and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. However, regardless of the etiological factors, the susceptibility and degree of liver damage may be influenced by genetic polymorphisms that are associated with distinct ethnic and cultural backgrounds. Consequently, metabolic genes are influenced by variable environmental lifestyle factors, such as diet, physical inactivity, and emotional stress, which are associated with regional differences among populations. This Topic Highlight will focus on the genetic and environmental factors that may influence the metabolism of alcohol and nutrients in the setting of distinct etiologies of liver disease. The interaction between genes and environment in the current-day admixed population, Mestizo and Native Mexican, will be described. Additionally, genes involved in immune regulation, insulin sensitivity, oxidative stress and extracellular matrix deposition may modulate the degree of severity. In conclusion, LC is a complex disease. The onset, progression, and clinical outcome of LC among the Mexican population are influenced by specific genetic and environmental factors. Among these are an admixed genome with a heterogenic distribution of European, Amerindian and African ancestry; a high score of alcohol consumption; viral infections; a hepatopathogenic diet; and a high prevalence of obesity. The variance in risk factors among populations suggests that intervention strategies directed towards the prevention and management of LC should be tailored according to such population-based features. PMID:26556986

  12. Environmental factors involved in carcinogenesis of urothelial cell carcinomas of the upper urinary tract.

    PubMed

    Colin, Pierre; Koenig, Philippe; Ouzzane, Adil; Berthon, Nicolas; Villers, Arnauld; Biserte, Jacques; Rouprt, Morgan

    2009-11-01

    Primary cancers of the ureter and renal pelvis are rare tumours, > 90% of which are transitional cell carcinomas. Only approximately 5% of urothelial tumours arise in the upper urinary tract (UUT). Many environmental factors contribute to the development of these cancers. Some are similar to bladder cancer-associated factors (tobacco, occupational exposure), while others are more specific to carcinogenesis of the UUT (phenacetine, Balkan endemic nephropathy [BEN], Chinese herb nephropathy or association with Blackfoot disease [BFD]). This review discusses the environmental factors involved in UUT carcinoma. Tobacco and occupational exposure remain the principal exogenous risk factors for developing these tumours. Conversely, carcinogenesis of UUT tumours resulting from phenacetine consumption has almost disappeared. Although the incidence of BEN is also on the decline, roles for aristolochic acid and the consumption of Chinese herbs in the physiopathology and induction of this nephropathy, respectively, have proposed. In Taiwan, the association of this tumour type with BFD and arsenic exposure remains unclear to date. As some genetic polymorphisms are associated with an increased risk of cancer or faster disease progression, there is variability in interindividual susceptibility to the development of UUT carcinoma when exposed to the aforementioned risk factors Cytosolic sulfotransferases (SULTs) catalyse the detoxification of many environmental chemicals but also in the bioactivation of dietary and other mutagens. Polymorphism of the SULT gene, is thought to confer susceptibility to upper tract tumours. PMID:19689473

  13. Genetic, metabolic and environmental factors involved in the development of liver cirrhosis in Mexico

    PubMed Central

    Ramos-Lopez, Omar; Martinez-Lopez, Erika; Roman, Sonia; Fierro, Nora A; Panduro, Arturo

    2015-01-01

    Liver cirrhosis (LC) is a chronic illness caused by inflammatory responses and progressive fibrosis. Globally, the most common causes of chronic liver disease include persistent alcohol abuse, followed by viral hepatitis infections and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. However, regardless of the etiological factors, the susceptibility and degree of liver damage may be influenced by genetic polymorphisms that are associated with distinct ethnic and cultural backgrounds. Consequently, metabolic genes are influenced by variable environmental lifestyle factors, such as diet, physical inactivity, and emotional stress, which are associated with regional differences among populations. This Topic Highlight will focus on the genetic and environmental factors that may influence the metabolism of alcohol and nutrients in the setting of distinct etiologies of liver disease. The interaction between genes and environment in the current-day admixed population, Mestizo and Native Mexican, will be described. Additionally, genes involved in immune regulation, insulin sensitivity, oxidative stress and extracellular matrix deposition may modulate the degree of severity. In conclusion, LC is a complex disease. The onset, progression, and clinical outcome of LC among the Mexican population are influenced by specific genetic and environmental factors. Among these are an admixed genome with a heterogenic distribution of European, Amerindian and African ancestry; a high score of alcohol consumption; viral infections; a hepatopathogenic diet; and a high prevalence of obesity. The variance in risk factors among populations suggests that intervention strategies directed towards the prevention and management of LC should be tailored according to such population-based features. PMID:26556986

  14. Concentration of Elements in Food: How Can It Reflect Impact of Environmental and Other Influencing Factors?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vincevica-Gaile, Zane; Klavins, Maris

    2013-12-01

    Element content of food is variable and can be influenced by different factors. The aim of the present study was to discover the linkage between macro- and microelement concentrations in food produced in Latvia, and possible impacts of environmental factors. More than 300 fresh food samples such as eggs, cottage cheese, honey, root vegetables, apple juice, apple wine were collected in the time period from 2009 to 2011. Samples were mineralised or analysed directly by appropriate method of quantitative analysis: atomic absorption spectrometry, inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry or total reflection X-ray fluorescence spectrometry. Statistical analysis of data revealed that food elemental content can be influenced by sitespecific factors such as geographical origin, seasonality, environmental pollution.

  15. Assessment of the environmental and genetic factors influencing prevalence of metabolic syndrome in Saudi Arabia.

    PubMed

    Gosadi, Ibrahim M

    2016-01-01

     Metabolic syndrome (MS) is a combination of factors that increases the risk of cardiovascular atherosclerotic diseases including diabetes, obesity, dyslipidemia, and high blood pressure. Cardiovascular diseases are one of the leading causes of death in the adult Saudi population where the increase in cardiovascular-related mortality is augmented by the rise in the prevalence of MS. Metabolic syndrome is a multi-factorial disorder influenced by interactions between genetic and environmental components. This review aims to provide a comprehensive assessment of studied environmental and genetic factors explaining the prevalence of MS in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Additionally, this review aims to illustrate factors related to the population genetics of Saudi Arabia, which might explain a proportion of the prevalence of MS. PMID:26739969

  16. Assessment of the environmental and genetic factors influencing prevalence of metabolic syndrome in Saudi Arabia

    PubMed Central

    Gosadi, Ibrahim M.

    2016-01-01

    Metabolic syndrome (MS) is a combination of factors that increases the risk of cardiovascular atherosclerotic diseases including diabetes, obesity, dyslipidemia, and high blood pressure. Cardiovascular diseases are one of the leading causes of death in the adult Saudi population where the increase in cardiovascular-related mortality is augmented by the rise in the prevalence of MS. Metabolic syndrome is a multi-factorial disorder influenced by interactions between genetic and environmental components. This review aims to provide a comprehensive assessment of studied environmental and genetic factors explaining the prevalence of MS in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Additionally, this review aims to illustrate factors related to the population genetics of Saudi Arabia, which might explain a proportion of the prevalence of MS. PMID:26739969

  17. Interaction of gravity with other environmental factors in growth and development: an introduction.

    PubMed

    Hoson, T

    1999-01-01

    The life of plants and other organisms is governed by the constant force of gravity on earth. The mechanism of graviperception, signal transduction, and gravireaction is one of the major themes in space biology. When gravity controls each step of the life cycle such as growth and development, it does not work alone but operates with the interaction of other environmental factors. In order to understand the role of gravity in regulation of the life cycle, such interactions also should be clarified. Under microgravity conditions in space, various changes are brought about in the process of growth and development. Some changes would be advantageous to organisms, but others would be unfavorable. For overcoming such disadvantages, it may be required to exploit some other environmental factors which substitute for gravity in some properties. In terrestrial plants, gravity can be replaced by light under certain conditions. The gravity-substituting factors may play a principal role in future space development. PMID:11710378

  18. Family and social environmental factors associated with aggression among Chinese adolescents.

    PubMed

    Dou, Chunxia; Wei, Zhen; Jin, Ke; Wang, He; Wang, Xiulan; Peng, Ziwen

    2015-09-01

    Family and school environments are assumed to be associated with and influence aggressive behaviors. However, which specific risk factors within these environments that are associated with aggressive behavior are unclear. The goal of this study is to identify family and social environmental qualities that are related to aggression among Chinese adolescents. Survey data were obtained from 3,213 randomly selected urban high school students ages 10 through 18 in southern China. Lower parental attachment, higher family income, mother's higher education levels, father's parenting goals, rough or changeable parenting styles, unsuitable peer relationships, and inadequate social atmospheres at school serve as risk factors for aggression among Chinese adolescents. Our findings provide some implications for understanding aggression among adolescents and suggests possible interventions to help overcome potential environmental risk factors and thus to prevent aggressive behavior in school. PMID:25496506

  19. Elevated-CO2 Response of Stomata and Its Dependence on Environmental Factors

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Zhenzhu; Jiang, Yanling; Jia, Bingrui; Zhou, Guangsheng

    2016-01-01

    Stomata control the flow of gases between plants and the atmosphere. This review is centered on stomatal responses to elevated CO2 concentration and considers other key environmental factors and underlying mechanisms at multiple levels. First, an outline of general responses in stomatal conductance under elevated CO2 is presented. Second, stomatal density response, its development, and the trade-off with leaf growth under elevated CO2 conditions are depicted. Third, the molecular mechanism regulating guard cell movement at elevated CO2 is suggested. Finally, the interactive effects of elevated CO2 with other factors critical to stomatal behavior are reviewed. It may be useful to better understand how stomata respond to elevated CO2 levels while considering other key environmental factors and mechanisms, including molecular mechanism, biochemical processes, and ecophysiological regulation. This understanding may provide profound new insights into how plants cope with climate change.

  20. Meta-Analysis of Individual and Environmental Factors that Influence People’s Addiction Tendencies

    PubMed Central

    Safari Hajat Aghaii, Saideh; Kamaly, Ayoub; Esfahani, Mehdi

    2012-01-01

    Background In recent years, many studies have been conducted to establish the causes of people’s tendency to become addicted and researchers have also tried to determine the amount, importance and role of each individual and environmental factor. Objectives With regard to the inconsistencies in previous research results, this study aims to use meta-analysis in order to integrate the results of different studies and investigate the impact of environmental and personal factors in people’s proclivity to addiction. Materials and Methods This meta-analysis uses the Hunter and Schmidt approach. For this purpose, 16 out of 32 studies which were acceptable in terms of their methodology, and had been conducted during an eight year period (2003 - 2010), were selected. A meta-analysis was conducted on the articles which had been collected using a standard checklist via; the internet, in person, telephone and e-mail, from universities and research centers across the country. After summarizing the results of the studies, effect sizes were calculated manually and combined based on a meta-analysis, and interpreted in accordance with a Cohen’s table. Results After data collection, results showed that the effect size of environmental factors in people’s tendency to addiction was 0.61 (P ≤ 0.00001), and the effect size of individual factors in people’s tendency to addiction was 0.45 (P ≤ 0.03). Conclusions According to Cohen’s table size, the effects were evaluated as average to high for the environmental factors and low to moderate for the individual factors in the tendency to become addicted. PMID:24971243

  1. Vaccine-induced antibody responses as parameters of the influence of endogenous and environmental factors.

    PubMed Central

    Van Loveren, H; Van Amsterdam, J G; Vandebriel, R J; Kimman, T G; Rümke, H C; Steerenberg, P S; Vos, J G

    2001-01-01

    In laboratory animals, an adequate way to assess effects of environmental exposures on the immune system is to study effects on antigen-specific immune responses, such as after sensitization to T-cell-dependent antigens. This probably also applies to testing effects in the human population. It has thus been suggested that antibody responses to vaccination might be useful in this context. Vaccination responses may be influenced by a variety of factors other than environmental ones. One factor is the vaccine itself; a second is the vaccination procedure used. In addition, the intrinsic capacity of the recipient to respond to a vaccine, which is determined by sex, genetic factors, and age, is important. Psychological stress, nutrition, and (infectious) diseases are also likely to have an impact. We reviewed the literature on vaccine response. With regard to exogenous factors, there is good evidence that smoking, diet, psychological stress, and certain infectious diseases affect vaccination titers, although it is difficult to determine to what extent. Genetic factors render certain individuals nonresponsive to vaccination. In general, in epidemiologic studies of adverse effects of exposure to agents in the environment in which vaccination titers are used, these additional factors need to be taken into consideration. Provided that these factors are corrected for, a study that shows an association of exposure to a given agent with diminished vaccination responses may indicate suboptimal function of the immune system and clinically relevant diminished immune response. It is quite unlikely that environmental exposures that affect responses to vaccination may in fact abrogate protection to the specific pathogen for which vaccination was performed. Only in those cases where individuals have a poor response to the vaccine may exogenous factors perhaps have a clinically significant influence on resistance to the specific pathogen. An exposure-associated inhibition of a vaccination response may, however, signify a decreased host resistance to pathogens against which no vaccination had been performed. PMID:11564609

  2. Metabolic Programming in the Immediate Postnatal Life

    PubMed Central

    Patel, Mulchand S.; Srinivasan, Malathi

    2011-01-01

    The metabolic programming effects of nutritional modifications in the immediate postnatal life are increasingly recognized to independently contribute to the development of metabolic syndrome in later life. Adjustment of litter size in rodents has been used to induce either under- or overnourishment in the immediate postnatal life of the offspring. While undernourishment led to growth retardation in the offspring, overnourishment produced increased body weight gains, hyperinsulinemia and hyperleptinemia. Overnourishment during the suckling period induced several adaptations in the energy circuitry in the hypothalamus of the offspring predisposing them for the onset of obesity later in life. Another approach for a nutritional modification in the immediate postnatal period is the artificial rearing of newborn rat pups on a high-carbohydrate (HC) milk formula without changes in the total calorie availability. Hyperinsulinemia, immediately evident in the HC pups, persisted in the post-weaning period even after withdrawal of the HC milk. Significant alterations in pancreatic islets supported chronic hyperinsulinemia in the HC rats. Alterations in the gene expression of hypothalamic neuropeptides predisposing to hyperphagia were evident during the period of the HC dietary modification. The persistence of these hypothalamic adaptations supported the obese phenotype in adult HC rats. A transgenerational effect gave rise to the development of chronic hyperinsulinemia and adult-onset obesity in the offspring of the HC female rats. Other studies have shown that lactation by a diabetic, obese or malnourished mother resulted in predisposition for the onset of metabolic disorders in the offspring. These observations from animal studies on the metabolic programming effects due to altered nutritional experiences in the immediate postnatal life strongly suggest that altered feeding practices for infants (formula feeding and early introduction of infant foods) could contribute to the rising incidence of overweight/obesity in children and adults. PMID:21846978

  3. Hedgehog-Gli activation during rhabdomyosarcoma genesis in postnatal mice

    PubMed Central

    Rajurkar, Mihir; Huang, He; Cotton, Jennifer L.; Brooks, Julie K.; Sicklick, Jason; McMahon, Andrew P.; Mao, Junhao

    2014-01-01

    Dysregulation of the Hedgehog (Hh)-Gli signaling pathway is implicated in a variety of human cancers, including basal cell carcinoma (BCC), medulloblastoma (MB), and embryonal rhabdhomyosarcoma (eRMS), three principle tumors associated with human Gorlin syndrome. However, the cellular origins of these tumors, including eRMS, remain poorly understood. In this study, we explore the cell populations that give rise to Hh-related tumors by specifically activating Smoothened (Smo) in both Hh-producing and -responsive cell lineages in postnatal mice. Interestingly, we find that unlike BCC and MB, eRMS originates from the stem/progenitor populations that do not normally receive active Hh signaling. Furthermore, we find that the myogenic lineage in postnatal mice is largely Hh quiescent and that Pax7-expressing muscle satellite cells are not able to give rise to eRMS upon Smo or Gli1/2 over-activation in vivo, suggesting that Hh-induced skeletal muscle eRMS arises from Hh/Gli quiescent non-myogenic cells. In addition, using the Gli1 null allele and a Gli3 repressor allele, we demonstrate the genetic requirement for Gli proteins in Hh-induced eRMS formation and provide molecular evidence for the involvement of SoxC factors in Hh-dependent eRMS cell survival and differentiation. PMID:24276242

  4. Exploring Environmental Factors in Nursing Workplaces That Promote Psychological Resilience: Constructing a Unified Theoretical Model

    PubMed Central

    Cusack, Lynette; Smith, Morgan; Hegney, Desley; Rees, Clare S.; Breen, Lauren J.; Witt, Regina R.; Rogers, Cath; Williams, Allison; Cross, Wendy; Cheung, Kin

    2016-01-01

    Building nurses' resilience to complex and stressful practice environments is necessary to keep skilled nurses in the workplace and ensuring safe patient care. A unified theoretical framework titled Health Services Workplace Environmental Resilience Model (HSWERM), is presented to explain the environmental factors in the workplace that promote nurses' resilience. The framework builds on a previously-published theoretical model of individual resilience, which identified the key constructs of psychological resilience as self-efficacy, coping and mindfulness, but did not examine environmental factors in the workplace that promote nurses' resilience. This unified theoretical framework was developed using a literary synthesis drawing on data from international studies and literature reviews on the nursing workforce in hospitals. The most frequent workplace environmental factors were identified, extracted and clustered in alignment with key constructs for psychological resilience. Six major organizational concepts emerged that related to a positive resilience-building workplace and formed the foundation of the theoretical model. Three concepts related to nursing staff support (professional, practice, personal) and three related to nursing staff development (professional, practice, personal) within the workplace environment. The unified theoretical model incorporates these concepts within the workplace context, linking to the nurse, and then impacting on personal resilience and workplace outcomes, and its use has the potential to increase staff retention and quality of patient care.

  5. Effects of Environmental Factors on Microbial Populations in Brackish Waters off the Southern Coast of Finland

    PubMed Central

    Väätänen, Pentti

    1980-01-01

    The roles played by environmental factors in seasonal changes in microbial populations were investigated in the Tvärminne area, off the southern coast of Finland. Surface-layer samples were collected at 1- or 2-week intervals in 1976-78, and 14 microbiological and 10 environmental parameters were determined. Stepwise multiple regression analysis was used to explain seasonal variation in the microbiological parameters. Separate analyses were made of the data from the open-water and ice-cover periods. In analyses of data from both periods, the environmental factors included accounted for a significant proportion of the variation in the parameters for community respiration (90%) and bacterial spores (80%), and a smaller proportion (60 to 65%) of the variation in total counts of bacteria and plate counts of psychrophiles and yeasts. Lower values (40 to 55%) were obtained for the variation in the other microbiological parameters. The environmental factors with maximal contributions were organic matter, water temperature, chlorophyll a, and salinity, but rainfall and winds also explained part of the variation in some microbiological parameters. In the winter analysis the results differed from those obtained for the other seasons, the variation being governed by parameters indicating freshwater outflows, namely, humic matter, salinity, water temperature (positive regression coefficient), and rainfall (negative regression coefficient). PMID:16345595

  6. Plant Traits, Environmental Factors, and Pollinator Visitation in Winter-flowering Helleborus foetidus (Ranunculaceae)

    PubMed Central

    SÁNCHEZ-LAFUENTE, ALFONSO M.; GUITIÁN, JAVIER; MEDRANO, MÓNICA; HERRERA, CARLOS M.; REY, PEDRO J.; CERDÁ, XIM

    2005-01-01

    • Background and Aims This study examined the effect of plant traits and environmental factors on pollinator visitation in the winter-flowering Helleborus foetidus (Ranunculaceae) in three distant regions in the Iberian Peninsula. • Methods Geographical variation in floral visitor assemblage, plant traits and environmental factors were analysed during the flowering season. • Key Results Differences were found in all plant traits measured (number of open flowers, flower size, number of stamens per flower, and number of nectaries) both within and among regions, and differences among regions in all the environmental factors considered (air temperature, exposure to sunlight, canopy cover, and distance to the nearest neighbour). Differences were also found among regions in the probability that plants would be visited by pollinators. • Conclusions The results show that, although floral display (i.e. number of open flowers on a plant on a given day) consistently explained among-plant differences in visitation rate in all regions, visitation rate was not significantly affected by any other biological or environmental variable. In Helleborus foetidus, then, ‘how’ the plant is would seem to be more important than ‘where’ is it. PMID:16093269

  7. Current Changes in Pubertal Timing: Revised Vision in Relation with Environmental Factors Including Endocrine Disruptors.

    PubMed

    Parent, Anne-Simone; Franssen, Delphine; Fudvoye, Julie; Pinson, Anneline; Bourguignon, Jean-Pierre

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this chapter is to revise some common views on changes in pubertal timing. This revision is based on recent epidemiological findings on the clinical indicators of pubertal timing and data on environmental factor effects and underlying mechanisms. A current advancement in timing of female puberty is usually emphasized. It appears, however, that timing is also changing in males. Moreover, the changes are towards earliness for initial pubertal stages and towards lateness for final stages in both sexes. Such observations indicate the complexity of environmental influences on pubertal timing. The mechanisms of changes in pubertal timing may involve both the central neuroendocrine control and peripheral effects at tissues targeted by gonadal steroids. While sufficient energy availability is a clue to the mechanism of pubertal development, changes in the control of both energy balance and reproduction may vary under the influence of common determinants such as endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs). These effects can take place right before puberty as well as much earlier, during fetal and neonatal life. Finally, environmental factors can interact with genetic factors in determining changes in pubertal timing. Therefore, the variance in pubertal timing is no longer to be considered under absolutely separate control by environmental and genetic determinants. Some recommendations are provided for evaluation of EDC impact in the management of pubertal disorders and for possible reduction of EDC exposure along the precautionary principle. PMID:26680578

  8. Environmental Factors Related to Enterobiasis in a Southeast Region of Korea

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Dong-Hee; Cho, Min Kyoung; Park, Mi Kyung; Kang, Shin Ae; Kim, Bo Young; Park, Sang Kyun

    2013-01-01

    Pinworm infection can occur through contact with contaminated surfaces followed by ingestion or even through inhalation of infective eggs. We have limited information regarding environmental contamination by eggs of Enterobius vermicularis. In order to determine environmental risk factors associated with the rate of E. vermicularis infection, we investigated possible environmental risk factors using a questionnaire from 46 kindergartens in 3 different cities of the southeast area of Korea. In total, using the cellotape anal swab technique, 3,422 children were examined for E. vermicularis infection. We evaluated E. vermicularis egg of books, educational materials, toys, room door handles, dusts of window edges, desks, chairs, tables, and dusts of classrooms. The overall egg-positive rate for E. vermicularis was 6.0%, and the prevalence of enterobiasis in each kindergarten ranged between 0% and 16.9%. We found that 78.9% of egg positive kindergartens were managed by private foundations, which was significantly higher, compared with kindergartens managed by public foundations or the nation. Compared with public or national kindergartens, most private kindergartens were located in residential areas and the number of children in these areas was significantly higher. In conclusion, numbers of children in kindergartens was found to be an environmental risk factor associated with transmission of enterobiasis in Korea. PMID:23468007

  9. Autumn ichthyoplankton assemblage in the Yangtze Estuary shaped by environmental factors

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Shude

    2016-01-01

    This study investigated the response of the ichthyoplankton community to environmental changes in the Yangtze Estuary using canonical correspondence analysis. Ichthyoplankton community and environmental data were recorded during the autumns of 1998, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2007 and 2009. Among the ichthyoplankton, the dominant larval and juvenile families were the Engraulidae, Gobiidae and Salangidae, and the most common eggs were from Trichiurus lepturus. The ichthyoplankton was identified via canonical correspondence analysis to three assemblages: an estuary assemblage dominated by Chaeturichthys stigmatias, a coastal assemblage dominated by Engraulis japonicus and Stolephorus commersonii, and an offshore assemblage dominated by Trichiurus lepturus. Regarding environmental factors in the Yangtze Estuary, suspended matter and surface seawater salinity were the main factors influencing the distributions of the different assemblages, while sediment from the Yangtze River during the rainy season and chlorophyll a were the principle drivers of the annual variances in the distribution of ichthyoplankton assemblages. Our aims in this study were to provide detailed characterizations of the ichthyoplankton assemblage in the autumns of seven years, examine the long-term dynamics of autumn ichthyoplankton assemblages, and evaluate the influence of environmental factors on the spatial distribution and inter-annual variations of ichthyoplankton assemblages associated with the Yangtze Estuary. PMID:27114877

  10. Environmental Burden of Disease in Europe: Assessing Nine Risk Factors in Six Countries

    PubMed Central

    Knol, Anne B.; Jantunen, Matti; Lim, Tek-Ang; Conrad, André; Rappolder, Marianne; Carrer, Paolo; Fanetti, Anna-Clara; Kim, Rokho; Buekers, Jurgen; Torfs, Rudi; Iavarone, Ivano; Classen, Thomas; Hornberg, Claudia; Mekel, Odile C.L.

    2014-01-01

    Background: Environmental health effects vary considerably with regard to their severity, type of disease, and duration. Integrated measures of population health, such as environmental burden of disease (EBD), are useful for setting priorities in environmental health policies and research. This review is a summary of the full Environmental Burden of Disease in European countries (EBoDE) project report. Objectives: The EBoDE project was set up to provide assessments for nine environmental risk factors relevant in selected European countries (Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, and the Netherlands). Methods: Disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) were estimated for benzene, dioxins, secondhand smoke, formaldehyde, lead, traffic noise, ozone, particulate matter (PM2.5), and radon, using primarily World Health Organization data on burden of disease, (inter)national exposure data, and epidemiological or toxicological risk estimates. Results are presented here without discounting or age-weighting. Results: About 3–7% of the annual burden of disease in the participating countries is associated with the included environmental risk factors. Airborne particulate matter (diameter ≤ 2.5 μm; PM2.5) is the leading risk factor associated with 6,000–10,000 DALYs/year and 1 million people. Secondhand smoke, traffic noise (including road, rail, and air traffic noise), and radon had overlapping estimate ranges (600–1,200 DALYs/million people). Some of the EBD estimates, especially for dioxins and formaldehyde, contain substantial uncertainties that could be only partly quantified. However, overall ranking of the estimates seems relatively robust. Conclusions: With current methods and data, environmental burden of disease estimates support meaningful policy evaluation and resource allocation, including identification of susceptible groups and targets for efficient exposure reduction. International exposure monitoring standards would enhance data quality and improve comparability. Citation: Hänninen O, Knol AB, Jantunen M, Lim TA, Conrad A, Rappolder M, Carrer P, Fanetti AC, Kim R, Buekers J, Torfs R, Iavarone I, Classen T, Hornberg C, Mekel OC, EBoDE Working Group. 2014. Environmental burden of disease in Europe: assessing nine risk factors in six countries. Environ Health Perspect 122:439–446; http://dx.doi.org/10.1289/ehp.1206154 PMID:24584099

  11. Effects of the health service and environmental factors on infant mortality: the case of Sri Lanka.

    PubMed

    Patel, M

    1980-06-01

    One of the findings of this study is that regional variations in the infant mortality rates of Sri Lanka are large, ranging from 26 per 1000 live births in Jaffna to 91 per 1000 in Nuwara Eliya, a tea estate district. These differences are more strongly associated with regional variations in environmental determinants of mortality than with regional variations in public health expenditure. The most significant environmental factor associated with interregional infant mortality rates was to be the nature of the water supply (r = -0.82, significant at the 99% level). Regional government expenditure on health had only a weak association with infant mortality rates (r = 0.08). PMID:6772730

  12. [Effects of socio-environmental factors on neurocognitive performance in premature or low-birth weight preschoolers].

    PubMed

    Chiarotti, F; Castignani, A M; Puopolo, M; Menniti-Ippolito, F; Minniti De Simeonibus, E; Di Paolo, A

    2001-01-01

    Severely preterm neonates (gestational age < or = 32 weeks) and/or very low birth weight (VLBW, with weight at birth < or = 1500 g) are 2% of all newborns, with a rising incidence due to the increase of multiple gestations and of pregnancies at advanced age. These neonates may be affected by severe neurological pathologies (6-10% of cases), but they often have minor disabilities (such as distractibility, hyperactivity, learning and social competence disabilities, deficit of motor development) difficult to be early diagnosed, and frequently recognized only at pre-school or school age. A review of the current knowledge about the effects of potential risk factors responsible for deficits of neurocognitive development in pre-school age and for postnatal distress of mothers, and their inter-correlations, is reported. PMID:12046225

  13. Sleep as a Mediator in the Pathway Linking Environmental Factors to Hypertension: A Review of the Literature

    PubMed Central

    Akinseye, Oluwaseun A.; Williams, Stephen K.; Seixas, Azizi; Pandi-Perumal, Seithikurippu R.; Vallon, Julian; Zizi, Ferdinand; Jean-Louis, Girardin

    2015-01-01

    Environmental factors, such as noise exposure and air pollution, are associated with hypertension. These environmental factors also affect sleep quality. Given the growing evidence linking sleep quality with hypertension, the purpose of this review is to investigate the role of sleep as a key mediator in the association between hypertension and environmental factors. Through this narrative review of the extant literature, we highlight that poor sleep quality mediates the relationship between environmental factors and hypertension. The conceptual model proposed in this review offers opportunities to address healthcare disparities in hypertension among African Americans by highlighting the disparate impact that the predictors (environmental factors) and mediator (sleep) have on the African-American community. Understanding the impact of these factors is crucial since the main outcome variable (hypertension) severely burdens the African-American community. PMID:25821594

  14. Developing standards for environmental toxicants: the need to consider abiotic environmental factors and microbe-mediated ecologic processes.

    PubMed Central

    Babich, H; Stotzky, G

    1983-01-01

    This article suggests and discusses two novel aspects for the formulation of standards for environmental toxicants. First, uniform national standards for each pollutant will be underprotective for some ecosystems and overprotective for others, inasmuch as the toxicity of a pollutant to the indigenous biota is dependent on the physicochemical properties of the recipient environment. As the number of chemicals that need regulation is immense and as microbes appear to respond similarly to pollutant-abiotic factor interactions as do plants and animals, it is suggested that microbial assays be used initially to identify those abiotic factors that most influence the toxicity of specific pollutants. Thereafter, additional studies using plants and animals can focus on these pollutant-abiotic factor interactions, and more meaningful standards can then be formulated more rapidly and inexpensively. Second, it is suggested that the response to pollutants of microbe-mediated ecologic processes be used to quantitate the sensitivity of different ecosystems to various toxicants. Such a quantification, expressed in terms of an "ecological dose 50%" (EcD50), could be easily incorporated into the methodologies currently used to set water quality criteria and would also be applicable to setting criteria for terrestrial ecosystems. PMID:6339225

  15. Effect of environmental factors on the abundance of decapod crustaceans from soft bottoms off southeastern Brazil.

    PubMed

    Furlan, Michele; Castilho, Antonio L; Fernandes-Góes, Lissandra C; Fransozo, Vivian; Bertini, Giovana; Costa, Rogério C da

    2013-01-01

    This study investigated the importance of variations in environmental factors affecting the abundance patterns of decapods on the southeastern Brazilian coast. Sampling was carried out monthly from January 1998 through December 1999 in Ubatumirim and Mar Virado, Ubatuba region, using a commercial shrimp fishing boat equipped with double-rig nets. Six areas adjacent to rocky shores were chosen. Bottom-water samples were collected using a Nansen bottle, to measure the temperature and salinity. Sediment samples were also obtained by means of a Van Veen grab, for determination of texture and organic-matter content. The association of environmental factors with species abundance was evaluated by Canonical Correspondence Analysis (α = 0.05). Forty-one species of Decapoda were used in the multivariate analysis. The analysis indicated that sediment texture (phi) and bottom temperature were the main factors correlated (p < 0.05) with the spatial and temporal abundance of the species. Considering the study region as faunal transition zone, including a mixture of species of both tropical and subantarctic origin, the species responded differently to environmental factors, mainly temperature. It is conceivable that the decapods adjust their distribution according to their intrinsic physiological limitations, possibly as a result of the available resources. PMID:24141416

  16. Regional and geographical variations in infertility: effects of environmental, cultural, and socioeconomic factors.

    PubMed

    Leke, R J; Oduma, J A; Bassol-Mayagoitia, S; Bacha, A M; Grigor, K M

    1993-07-01

    Fertility is affected by many different cultural, environmental, and socioeconomic factors, especially in developing countries where poverty and infections are commonplace. Environmental factors play a major role in infertility in Africa. One of the most important health problems in sub-Saharan Africa is the high rate of infertility and childlessness. The African society has a strong traditional heritage, and the study of the patterns of infertility in this part of the world would be incomplete without consideration of the sociocultural and environmental factors. The most cost-effective approach to solving the infertility problems in Africa is prevention and education. In Mexico, problems of reproductive health are associated with pregnancy in adolescents, sexually transmitted diseases and genitourinary neoplasms. Infertility affects 10% of couples, usually as a result of asymptomatic infection. Education, poverty, nutrition, and pollution are problems that must be tackled. The government has taken positive action in the State of São Paulo in Brazil, where gender discrimination is a major factor affecting women's health and reproductive outcomes. The implementation of new policies with adequate funding has resulted in marked improvements. PMID:8243409

  17. Regional and geographical variations in infertility: effects of environmental, cultural, and socioeconomic factors.

    PubMed Central

    Leke, R J; Oduma, J A; Bassol-Mayagoitia, S; Bacha, A M; Grigor, K M

    1993-01-01

    Fertility is affected by many different cultural, environmental, and socioeconomic factors, especially in developing countries where poverty and infections are commonplace. Environmental factors play a major role in infertility in Africa. One of the most important health problems in sub-Saharan Africa is the high rate of infertility and childlessness. The African society has a strong traditional heritage, and the study of the patterns of infertility in this part of the world would be incomplete without consideration of the sociocultural and environmental factors. The most cost-effective approach to solving the infertility problems in Africa is prevention and education. In Mexico, problems of reproductive health are associated with pregnancy in adolescents, sexually transmitted diseases and genitourinary neoplasms. Infertility affects 10% of couples, usually as a result of asymptomatic infection. Education, poverty, nutrition, and pollution are problems that must be tackled. The government has taken positive action in the State of São Paulo in Brazil, where gender discrimination is a major factor affecting women's health and reproductive outcomes. The implementation of new policies with adequate funding has resulted in marked improvements. PMID:8243409

  18. Environmental factors acting during development to influence MS risk: insights from animal studies

    PubMed Central

    Krementsov, Dimitry N.; Teuscher, Cory

    2013-01-01

    Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an autoimmune demyelinating disease of the central nervous system with an increasing incidence in females. Epidemiological data strongly implicate environmental factors acting at the population level during gestation, childhood, and adulthood in the increasing incidence of MS. Several such factors have been implicated in disease risk, but their causality remains unproven, while other factors remain unknown. The understanding of risk factors acting during development is particularly limited. Animal studies could potentially bridge the gap between observational epidemiology and clinical intervention, providing not only direct evidence of causality for a given environmental agent, but also an opportunity to dissect the underlying molecular mechanisms. Given the short gestational and developmental period in rodents, effects of developmental exposure can also be readily addressed. Nonetheless, studies in this area have so far been few. In this review, we summarize the insights gleaned from studies that test environmental influences in animal models of MS, with a particular focus on gestational and early life exposures. PMID:24077054

  19. Impact of socioeconomic and environmental factors on atopic eczema and allergic rhinitis: a cross sectional study

    PubMed Central

    Torfi, Yasamin; Bitarafan, Niloofar; Rajabi, Mehdi

    2015-01-01

    The prevalence of allergic rhinitis and atopic eczema is on the rise in recent decades. Many factors can be related to the development of these diseases. We aimed to investigate the association between socioeconomic status (SES), environmental risk factors and these conditions. In this study, the International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood (ISAAC) questionnaire was translated and validated. Then it was used to determine the prevalence, severity and possible related factors for both diseases in 1904 schoolchildren aged 6-7 and 13-14 years from various regions of Tehran. The prevalence of rhinitis and eczema in the past year was 33.2 % and 8.2 %, respectively. The prevalence of rhinoconjunctivitis in the past year was 30 %. The risk factors such as birth order, nursery attendance, pet ownership, past allergic experiences as well as some SES factors were associated with both conditions. The prevalence of allergic rhinitis and atopic eczema was on the rise in comparison to the previous studies and SES as well as environmental factors are thought to be associated with the prevalence of these conditions.

  20. Contribution of Individual and Environmental Factors to Physical Activity Level among Spanish Adults

    PubMed Central

    Serrano-Sanchez, José Antonio; Lera-Navarro, Angela; Dorado-García, Cecilia; González-Henriquez, Juan José; Sanchis-Moysi, Joaquin

    2012-01-01

    Background Lack of physical activity (PA) is a major risk for chronic disease and obesity. The main aims of the present study were to identify individual and environmental factors independently associated with PA and examine the relative contribution of these factors to PA level in Spanish adults. Methodology/Principal Findings A population-based cross-sectional sample of 3,000 adults (18–75 years old) from Gran Canaria (Spain) was selected using a multistage stratified random sampling method. The participants were interviewed at home using a validated questionnaire to assess PA as well as individual and environmental factors. The data were analyzed using bivariate and multivariate logistic regression. One demographic variable (education), two cognitive (self-efficacy and perceived barriers), and one social environmental (organized format) were independently associated with PA in both genders. Odds ratios ranged between 1.76–2.07 in men and 1.35–2.50 in women (both p<0.05). Individual and environmental factors explained about one-third of the variance in PA level. Conclusions/Significance Self-efficacy and perceived barriers were the most significant factors to meet an adequate level of PA. The risk of insufficient PA was twofold greater in men with primary or lesser studies and who are employed. In women, living in rural environments increased the risk of insufficient PA. The promotion of organized PA may be an efficient way to increase the level of PA in the general population. Improvement in the access to sport facilities and places for PA is a prerequisite that may be insufficient and should be combined with strategies to improve self-efficacy and overcome perceived barriers in adulthood. PMID:22685598

  1. Objective assessment of facial skin aging and the associated environmental factors in Japanese monozygotic twins.

    PubMed

    Ichibori, Ryoko; Fujiwara, Takashi; Tanigawa, Tomoko; Kanazawa, Shigeyuki; Shingaki, Kenta; Torii, Kosuke; Tomita, Koichi; Yano, Kenji; Sakai, Yasuo; Hosokawa, Ko

    2014-06-01

    Twin studies, especially those involving monozygotic (MZ) twins, facilitate the analysis of factors affecting skin aging while controlling for age, gender, and genetic susceptibility. The purpose of this study was to objectively assess various features of facial skin and analyze the effects of environmental factors on these features in MZ twins. At the Osaka Twin Research Center, 67 pairs of MZ twins underwent medical interviews and photographic assessments, using the VISIA(®) Complexion Analysis System. First, the average scores of the right and left cheek skin spots, wrinkles, pores, texture, and erythema were calculated; the differences between the scores were then compared in each pair of twins. Next, using the results of medical interviews and VISIA data, we investigated the effects of environmental factors on skin aging. The data were analyzed using Pearson's correlation coefficient test and the Wilcoxon signed-rank test. The intrapair differences in facial texture scores significantly increased as the age of the twins increased (P = 0.03). Among the twin pairs who provided answers to the questions regarding history differences in medical interviews, the twins who smoked or did not use skin protection showed significantly higher facial texture or wrinkle scores compared with the twins not exposed to cigarettes or protectants (P = 0.04 and 0.03, respectively). The study demonstrated that skin aging among Japanese MZ twins, especially in terms of facial texture, was significantly influenced by environmental factors. In addition, smoking and skin protectant use were important environmental factors influencing skin aging. PMID:24910280

  2. Environmental Determinants of Cardiovascular Diseases Risk Factors: A Qualitative Directed Content Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Sabzmakan, Leila; Mohammadi, Eesa; Morowatisharifabad, Mohammad Ali; Afaghi, Ahmad; Naseri, Mohammad Hassan; Mirzaei, Masoud

    2014-01-01

    Background: Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) are the number one cause of death in the world. In most analyses of health problems, environment plays a significant and modifiable role in causing the problem either directly or indirectly through behavior. Objectives: This study aims to understand the patients and healthcare providers’ experiences about the environmental determinants of CVD risk factors based on the Precede Model. Patients and Methods: This qualitative study conducted over six months in 2012 at Diabetes Units of Health Centers associated with Alborz University of Medical Sciences and Health Services which is located in Karaj, Iran. The data were collected based on individual semi-structured interviews with 50 patients and 12 healthcare providers. Data analysis was performed simultaneous with data collection using the content analysis directed method. Results: Lack of behaviors like stress control, healthy eating and physical activity were the roots of the risk factors for CVD. The environmental factor is one of the barriers for conducting these behaviors. The environmental barriers included of structural environment including “availability and accessibility of health resources”, “new skills”, and “law and policies” which are located in enabling category and social environment including “social support”, “motivation to comply” and “consequences of behavior” which are located in reinforcing category. The most barriers to performing health behaviors were often structural. Conclusions: The environmental factors were barriers for doing healthy behaviors. These factors need to be considered to design health promotion interventions. Policymakers should not only focus on patients’ education but also should provide specific facilities to enhance economic, social and cultural status. PMID:25031848

  3. The structure of genetic and environmental risk factors for phobias in women

    PubMed Central

    Czajkowski, N.; Kendler, K. S.; Tambs, K.; Røysamb, E.; Reichborn-Kjennerud, T.

    2011-01-01

    Background To explore the genetic and environmental factors underlying the co-occurrence of lifetime diagnoses of DSM-IV phobia. Method Female twins (n = 1430) from the population-based Norwegian Institute of Public Health Twin Panel were assessed at personal interview for DSM-IV lifetime specific phobia, social phobia and agoraphobia. Comorbidity between the phobias were assessed by odds ratios (ORs) and polychoric correlations and multivariate twin models were fitted in Mx. Results Phenotypic correlations of lifetime phobia diagnoses ranged from 0.55 (agoraphobia and social phobia, OR 10.95) to 0.06 (animal phobia and social phobia, OR 1.21). In the best fitting twin model, which did not include shared environmental factors, heritability estimates for the phobias ranged from 0.43 to 0.63. Comorbidity between the phobias was accounted for by two common liability factors. The first loaded principally on animal phobia and did not influence the complex phobias (agoraphobia and social phobia). The second liability factor strongly influenced the complex phobias, but also loaded weak to moderate on all the other phobias. Blood phobia was mainly influenced by a specific genetic factor, which accounted for 51% of the total and 81% of the genetic variance. Conclusions Phobias are highly co-morbid and heritable. Our results suggest that the co-morbidity between phobias is best explained by two distinct liability factors rather than a single factor, as has been assumed in most previous multivariate twin analyses. One of these factors was specific to the simple phobias, while the other was more general. Blood phobia was mainly influenced by disorder specific genetic factors. PMID:21211096

  4. Perinatal Factors in Neonatal and Pediatric Lung Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Britt, Rodney D.; Faksh, Arij; Vogel, Elizabeth; Martin, Richard J.; Pabelick, Christina M.; Prakash, Y.S.

    2014-01-01

    Wheezing and asthma are significant clinical problems for infants and young children, particularly following premature birth. Recurrent wheezing in infants can progress to persistent asthma. As in adults, altered airway structure (remodeling) and function (increased bronchoconstriction) are also important in neonatal and pediatric airway diseases. Accumulating evidence suggests that airway disease in children is influenced by perinatal factors including perturbations in normal fetal lung development, postnatal interventions in the intensive care unit, and environmental and other insults in the neonatal period. Here, in addition to genetics, maternal health, environmental processes, innate immunity, and impaired lung development/function can all influence pathogenesis of airway disease in children. We summarize current understanding of how prenatal and postnatal factors can contribute to development of airway diseases in neonates and children. Understanding these mechanisms will help identify and develop novel therapies for childhood airway diseases. PMID:24090092

  5. A systematic review of neurodevelopmental effects of prenatal and postnatal organophosphate pesticide exposure.

    PubMed

    González-Alzaga, B; Lacasaña, M; Aguilar-Garduño, C; Rodríguez-Barranco, M; Ballester, F; Rebagliato, M; Hernández, A F

    2014-10-15

    Agricultural and residential use of organophosphate (OP) pesticides has increased in recent decades after banning some persistent pesticides. Although there is evidence of the effects of OPs on neurodevelopment and behaviour in adults, limited information is available about their effects in children, who might be more vulnerable to neurotoxic compounds. This paper was aimed at analysing the scientific evidence published to date on potential neurodevelopmental and behavioural effects of prenatal and postnatal exposure to OPs. A systematic review was undertaken to identify original articles published up to December 2012 evaluating prenatal or postnatal exposure to OPs in children and effects on neurodevelopment and/or behaviour. Articles were critically compared, focusing on the methodology used to assess exposure and adverse effects, as well as potential contributing factors that may modify both exposure and outcomes, such as genetic susceptibility to certain enzymes involved in OPs metabolisation (e.g. paraoxonase-1) and gender differences. Twenty articles met the inclusion criteria, 7 of which evaluated prenatal exposure to OPs, 8 postnatal exposure and 5 both pre- and postnatal exposure. Most of the studies evaluating prenatal exposure observed a negative effect on mental development and an increase in attention problems in preschool and school children. The evidence on postnatal exposure is less consistent, although 2 studies found an increase in reaction time in schoolchildren. Some paraoxonase-1 polymorphisms could enhance the association between OPs exposure and mental and psychomotor development. A large variability in epidemiological designs and methodologies used for assessing exposure and outcome was observed across the different studies, which made comparisons difficult. Prenatal and to a lesser extent postnatal exposure to OPs may contribute to neurodevelopmental and behavioural deficits in preschool and school children. Standardised methodologies are needed to allow results to be better compared and to perform a quantitative meta-analysis before drawing any final conclusions. PMID:24291036

  6. Overexpression of bone morphogenetic protein 10 in myocardium disrupts cardiac postnatal hypertrophic growth

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Hanying; Yong, Weidong; Ren, Shuxun; Shen, Weihua; He, Yongzheng; Cox, Karen A.; Zhu, Wuqiang; Li, Wei; Soonpaa, Mark; Payne, R. Mark; Franco, Diego; Field, Loren J.; Rosen, Vicki; Wang, Yibin; Shou, Weinian

    2008-01-01

    Postnatal cardiac hypertrophies have traditionally been classified into physiological or pathological hypertrophy. Both of them are induced by hemodynamic load. Cardiac postnatal hypertrophic growth is regarded as a part of the cardiac maturation process that is independent of cardiac working load. However, the functional significance of this biological event have not been determined, mainly due to the difficulty in creating an experimental condition for testing the growth potential of functioning heart in the absence of hemodynamic load. Recently, we generated a novel transgenic mouse model (αMHC-BMP10) in which the cardiac specific growth factor bone morphogenetic protein 10 (BMP10) is overexpressed in postnatal myocardium. These αMHC-BMP10 mice appear to have normal cardiogenesis throughout embryogenesis, but develop to smaller hearts within 6 weeks after birth. αMHC-BMP10 hearts are about half the normal size with 100% penetrance. Detailed morphometric analysis of cardiomyocytes clearly indicated that the compromised cardiac growth in αMHC-BMP10 mice was solely due to defect in cardiomyocyte postnatal hypertrophic growth. Physiological analysis further demonstrated that the response of these hearts to both physiological (e.g., exercise-induced hypertrophy) and pathological hypertrophic stimuli remained normal. In addition, the αMHC-BMP10 mice develop subaortic narrowing and concentric myocardial thickening without obstruction by 4 months of age. Systematic analysis of potential intracellular pathways further suggested a novel genetic pathway regulating this previously undefined cardiac postnatal hypertrophic growth event. This is the first demonstration that cardiac postnatal hypertrophic growth can be specifically modified genetically and dissected out from physiological and pathological hypertrophy. PMID:16798733

  7. Examining the relationship between environmental factors and conflict in pastoralist areas of East Africa.

    PubMed

    Ayana, Essayas K; Ceccato, Pietro; Fisher, Jonathan R B; DeFries, Ruth

    2016-07-01

    The eastern Africa region has long been known for recurring drought, prolonged civil war and frequent pastoral conflicts. Several researchers have suggested that environmental factors can trigger conflicts among pastoralist communities, but quantitative support for this hypothesis is lacking. Here we use 29years of georeferenced precipitation and Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) data to evaluate long term trends in scarcity of water and forage for livestock, and then ask whether these environmental stressors have any predictive power with respect to the location and timing of 11years of conflict data based on Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project (ACLED) and Uppsala Conflict Data Program (UCDP). Results indicate that environmental stressors were only partly predictive of conflict events. To better understand the drivers behind conflict, the contribution of other potential stressors to conflict need to be systematically quantified and be taken into consideration. PMID:27037881

  8. Exploring the Sensitivity of Terrestrial Ecosystems and Atmospheric Exchange of CO2 to Global Environmental Factors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jain, A. K.; Meiyappan, P.; Song, Y.; Barman, R.

    2011-12-01

    This presentation explores the sensitivity of terrestrial ecosystems and atmospheric exchange of carbon to global environmental factors to advance our understanding of uncertainty in CO2 projections. We use a land surface model, the Integrated Science Assessment Model (ISAM) recently coupled into the NCAR Community Earth System Model (CESM1) framework to evaluate ecosystem variability due to climatic and anthropogenic factors. The factors considered here include climate change, increasing ambient CO2 concentrations, anthropogenic nitrogen deposition, and land use change (LUC) activities such as clearing of land for agriculture, pasture, and wood harvest. Each factor has a potential to influence the net ecosystem exchange (NEE) of CO2. Using the ISAM-CESM modeling framework, we evaluate the individual and concurrent effects of all these environmental factors on the terrestrial NEE over the 20th century and the 21st century. The ISAM biogeochemical cycles consist of fully prognostic carbon and nitrogen dynamics associated with changes in land cover, litter decomposition, and soil organic matter. The ISAM biophysical model accounts for water and energy processes in the vegetation and soil column, integrated over a time step of 30 minutes. The newly available CRU-NCEP climate forcing data (1850-2010, 0.5ox0.5o spatial resolution) will be used for the historical period simulations. The 21st century simulations will be carried out using the Representative Concentration Pathway (RCP) storylines. This study will help quantify the importance of various environmental factors towards modeling land-atmosphere carbon exchange and better understand model related differences in CO2 estimates.

  9. Environmental factors influencing the development of black leaf streak (Mycosphaerella fijiensis Morelet) on bananas in Puerto Rico.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The effects of environmental factors on the development of black leaf streak (BLS) were studied in Puerto Rico under field conditions. Environmental factors evaluated included temperature, relative humidity, rainfall and solar radiation. Their effect on BLS was determined by recording the youngest...

  10. What High-Achieving Latino Students Need to Apply to College: Environmental Factors, Individual Resiliency, or Both?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rivera, Gwendelyn J.

    2014-01-01

    This quantitative study investigated how well environmental and individual factors predicted college-going behavior for college eligible Latino/as. Three questions were addressed: (a) Is there a relationship between individual agency and college-going behavior after controlling for environmental factors? (b) What is the relationship between the…

  11. Epidemiological Study on the Involvements of Environmental Factors and Allergy in Child Mental Health Using the Autism Screening Questionnaire

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shibata, Aki; Hitomi, Yoshiaki; Kambayashi, Yasuhiro; Hibino, Yuri; Yamazaki, Masami; Mitoma, Junko; Asakura, Hiroki; Hayashi, Koichi; Otaki, Naoto; Sagara, Takiko; Nakamura, Hiroyuki

    2013-01-01

    Although autism is now recognized as being very common (Buie et al., 2010) and as developing due to not only genetic but also environmental factors, there is insufficient epidemiological evidence on the relationship between autism and allergy. In this study, therefore, we attempted to clarify the association of environmental factors with autism…

  12. A review of environmental risk factors for myopia during early life, childhood and adolescence.

    PubMed

    Ramamurthy, Dharani; Lin Chua, Sharon Yu; Saw, Seang-Mei

    2015-11-01

    Myopia is a significant public health problem worldwide, particularly in East Asian countries. The increasing prevalence of myopia poses a huge socio-economic burden and progressive high myopia can lead to sight-threatening ocular complications. Hence, the prevention of early-onset myopia progressing to pathological high myopia is important. Recent epidemiological studies suggest that increased outdoor time is an important modifiable environmental factor that protects young children from myopia. This protective effect may be due to high light intensity outdoors, the chromaticity of daylight or increased vitamin D levels. This review summarises the possible underlying biological mechanisms for the protective association between time outdoors and myopia, including the potential role of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in refractive error development. Recent evidence for the role of other environmental risk factors such as near work, birth seasons, parental smoking and birth order are also summarised. PMID:26497977

  13. Toward a Bioecological Model of School Engagement: A Biometric Analysis of Gene and Environmental Factors

    PubMed Central

    Maynard, Brandy R.; Beaver, Kevin M.; Vaughn, Michael G.; DeLisi, Matthew; Roberts, Gregory

    2014-01-01

    School disengagement is associated with poor academic achievement, dropout, and risk behaviors such as truancy, delinquency, and substance use. Despite empirical research identifying risk correlates of school disengagement across the ecology, it is unclear from which domain these correlates arise. To redress this issue, the current study used intraclass correlation and DeFries-Fulker analyses to longitudinally decompose variance in three domains of engagement (academic, behavioral, and emotional) using data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. Findings suggest that nonshared environmental factors (that is, environmental contexts and experiences that are unique to each sibling) account for approximately half of the variance in indicators of school disengagement when controlling for genetic influences, and that this variance increases as adolescents grow older and rely less on their immediate family. The present study contributes new evidence on the biosocial underpinnings of school engagement and highlights the importance of interventions targeting factors in the nonshared environment. PMID:25525321

  14. Environmental Factors Correlated with Size of Bacterial Populations in a Polluted Stream

    PubMed Central

    Brasfeild, Helen

    1972-01-01

    Samples of water were taken from a polluted zone of the Gallinas River and analyzed as to numbers of total bacteria, coliforms, and fecal streptococci. Environmental factors measured were temperature, pH and concentrations of detergent, nitrate plus nitrite nitrogen, sulfate, chloride, bicarbonate, and phosphate. Thirty-two observations were made from 12 March through 22 July 1971. Stepwise multiple linear regression analyses of the data were carried out by computer to determine which of the environmental factors were significantly correlated with numbers of bacteria present. A multiple linear regression equation was constructed for each bacteriological parameter as a function of significant variables only. Log total bacteria was correlated positively with bicarbonate, phosphate, and detergent concentrations. Log coliforms was correlated positively with phosphate and sulfate concentrations and negatively with chloride concentration. Log fecal streptococci was correlated positively with bicarbonate and chloride concentrations. PMID:4627965

  15. Environmental factors that influence the location of crop agriculture in the conterminous United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Baker, Nancy T.; Capel, Paul D.

    2011-01-01

    Most crops are grown on land with shallow slope where the temperature, precipitation, and soils are favorable. In areas that are too steep, wet, or dry, landscapes have been modified to allow cultivation. Some of the limitations of the environmental factors that determine the location of agriculture can be overcome through modifications, but others cannot. On a larger-than-field scale, agricultural modifications commonly influence water availability through irrigation and (or) drainage and soil fertility and (or) organic-matter content through amendments such as manure, commercial fertilizer and lime. In general, it is not feasible to modify the other environmental factors, soil texture, soil depth, soil mineralogy, temperature, and terrain at large scales.

  16. Asthma in Urban Children: Epidemiology, Environmental Risk Factors, and the Public Health Domain.

    PubMed

    Milligan, Ki Lee; Matsui, Elizabeth; Sharma, Hemant

    2016-04-01

    Asthma is the most commonly reported chronic condition of childhood in developed countries, with 6.5 million children affected in the USA. A disparate burden of childhood asthma is seen among socioeconomically disadvantaged youth, often concentrated in urban areas with high poverty rates. Host factors that predispose a child to asthma include atopy, male gender, parental history of asthma, and also race, ethnicity, and genetic and epigenetic susceptibilities. Environmental factors, such as improved hygiene, ambient air pollution, and early life exposures to microbes and aeroallergens, also influence the development of asthma. With greater than 90 % of time spent indoors, home exposures (such as cockroach, rodent, and indoor air pollution) are highly relevant for urban asthma. Morbidity reduction may require focused public health initiatives for environmental intervention in high priority risk groups and the addition of immune modulatory agents in children with poorly controlled disease. PMID:27026587

  17. The Role of Environmental Factors in Modulating Immune Responses in Early Life

    PubMed Central

    MacGillivray, Duncan M.; Kollmann, Tobias R.

    2014-01-01

    The concept of immunological memory stipulates that past exposures shape present immune function. These exposures include not only specific antigens impacting adaptive immune memory but also conserved pathogen or danger associated molecular patterns that mold innate immune responses for prolonged periods of time. It should thus not come as a surprise that there is a vast range of external or environmental factors that impact immunity. The importance of environmental factors modulating immunity is most readily recognized in early life, a period of rapidly changing environments. We here summarize available data on the role of environment shaping immune development and from it derive an overarching hypothesis relating the underlying molecular mechanisms and evolutionary principles involved. PMID:25309535

  18. Epigenomic strategies at the interface of genetic and environmental risk factors for autism

    PubMed Central

    LaSalle, Janine M.

    2014-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorders have been increasing in prevalence over the past two decades, primarily because of increased awareness and diagnosis. However, autism is clearly a complex human genetic disorder that involves interactions between genes and environment. Epigenetic mechanisms such as DNA methylation act at the interface of genetic and environmental risk and protective factors. Advancements in genome-wide sequencing has broadened the view of the human methylome and revealed the organization of the human genome into large-scale methylation domains that footprint over neurologically important genes involved in embryonic development. Future integrative epigenomic analyses of genetic risk factors with environmental exposures and methylome analyses are expected to be important for understanding the complex etiology of autism spectrum disorders. PMID:23677056

  19. Solar radiation and vitamin D: mitigating environmental factors in autoimmune disease.

    PubMed

    Schwalfenberg, Gerry K

    2012-01-01

    This paper looks at the environmental role of vitamin D and solar radiation as risk reduction factors in autoimmune disease. Five diseases are considered: multiple sclerosis, type 1 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, autoimmune disease of the thyroid, and inflammatory bowel disease. Clinical relevant studies and factors that may indicate evidence that autoimmune disease is a vitamin D-sensitive disease are presented. Studies that have resulted in prevention or amelioration of some autoimmune disease are discussed. An example of the utility of supplementing vitamin D in an unusual autoimmune disease, idiopathic thrombocytic purpura, is presented. PMID:22523507

  20. Solar Radiation and Vitamin D: Mitigating Environmental Factors in Autoimmune Disease

    PubMed Central

    Schwalfenberg, Gerry K.

    2012-01-01

    This paper looks at the environmental role of vitamin D and solar radiation as risk reduction factors in autoimmune disease. Five diseases are considered: multiple sclerosis, type 1 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, autoimmune disease of the thyroid, and inflammatory bowel disease. Clinical relevant studies and factors that may indicate evidence that autoimmune disease is a vitamin D-sensitive disease are presented. Studies that have resulted in prevention or amelioration of some autoimmune disease are discussed. An example of the utility of supplementing vitamin D in an unusual autoimmune disease, idiopathic thrombocytic purpura, is presented. PMID:22523507

  1. Lifestyle-related factors and environmental agents causing cancer: an overview.

    PubMed

    Irigaray, P; Newby, J A; Clapp, R; Hardell, L; Howard, V; Montagnier, L; Epstein, S; Belpomme, D

    2007-12-01

    The increasing incidence of a variety of cancers after the Second World War confronts scientists with the question of their origin. In Western countries, expansion and ageing of the population as well as progress in cancer detection using new diagnostic and screening tests cannot fully account for the observed growing incidence of cancer. Our hypothesis is that environmental factors play a more important role in cancer genesis than it is usually agreed. (1) Over the last 2-3 decades, alcohol consumption and tobacco smoking in men have significantly decreased in Western Europe and North America. (2) Obesity is increasing in many countries, but the growing incidence of cancer also concerns cancers not related to obesity nor to other known lifestyle-related factors. (3) There is evidence that the environment has changed over the time period preceding the recent rise in cancer incidence, and that this change, still continuing, included the accumulation of many new carcinogenic factors in the environment. (4) Genetic susceptibility to cancer due to genetic polymorphism cannot have changed over one generation and actually favours the role of exogenous factors through gene-environment interactions. (5) Age is not the unique factor to be considered since the rising incidence of cancers is seen across all age categories, including children, and adolescents. (6) The fetus is specifically vulnerable to exogenous factors. A fetal exposure during a critical time window may explain why current epidemiological studies may still be negative in adults. We therefore propose that the involuntary exposure to many carcinogens in the environment, including microorganisms (viruses, bacteria and parasites), radiations (radioactivity, UV and pulsed electromagnetic fields) and many xenochemicals, may account for the recent growing incidence of cancer and therefore that the risk attributable to environmental carcinogen may be far higher than it is usually agreed. Of major concern are: outdoor air pollution by carbon particles associated with polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons; indoor air pollution by environmental tobacco smoke, formaldehyde and volatile organic compounds such as benzene and 1,3 butadiene, which may particularly affect children and food contamination by food additives and by carcinogenic contaminants such as nitrates, pesticides, dioxins and other organochlorines. In addition, carcinogenic metals and metalloids, pharmaceutical medicines and some ingredients and contaminants in cosmetics may be involved. Although the risk fraction attributable to environmental factors is still unknown, this long list of carcinogenic and especially mutagenic factors supports our working hypothesis according to which numerous cancers may in fact be caused by the recent modification of our environment. PMID:18055160

  2. Beyond HbA1c: Environmental Risk Factors for Diabetic Retinopathy

    PubMed Central

    Nwanyanwu, Kristen Harris; Newman-Casey, Paula-Anne; Gardner, Thomas W; Lim, Jennifer I

    2015-01-01

    Diabetic retinopathy affects 4.2 million people in the United States and is the leading cause of blindness in working-aged people. As the prevalence of diabetes continues to rise, cost-effective interventions to decrease blindness from diabetic retinopathy will be paramount. While HbA1c and duration of disease are known risk factors, they account for only 11% of the risk of developing microvascular complications from the disease. The assessment of environmental risk factors for diabetic eye disease allows for the determination of modifiable population-level challenges that may be addressed to facilitate the end of blindness from diabetes. PMID:26973797

  3. Spatiotemporal patterns of evapotranspiration in response to multiple environmental factors simulated by the Community Land Model

    SciTech Connect

    Shi, Xiaoying; Mao, Jiafu; Thornton, Peter E; Huang, Maoyi; Hoffman, Forrest

    2013-01-01

    In this study, spatial and temporal patterns of evapotranspiration (ET) over the period of 1982-2008 are investigated and attributed to multiple environmental factors using the Community Land Model version 4 (CLM4). Our results show that CLM4 captures the spatial distribution and interannual variability of ET well when compared to observation-based estimates derived from the FLUXNET network of eddy covariance towers using the model tree ensembles (MTE) approach. We find that climate trends and variability dominate predicted variability in ET. Elevated atmospheric CO2 concentration also plays an important role in modulating the trend of predicted ET over most land areas, and functions as the dominant factor controlling ET changes over North America, South America and Asia regions. Compared to the effect of climate change and CO2 concentration, the roles of other factors such as nitrogen deposition, land use change and aerosol deposition are less pronounced and regionally dependent. For example, the aerosol deposition contribution is the third-most important factor for trends of ET over Europe, while it has the smallest impact on ET trend over other regions. As ET is a dominant component of the terrestrial water cycle, our results suggest that environmental factors like elevated CO2, nitrogen and aerosol depositions, and land use and land cover change, in addition to climate, could have significant impact on future projections of water resources and water cycle dynamics at global and regional scales.

  4. Evaluation of unit risk factors in support of the Hanford Remedial Action Environmental Impact Statement

    SciTech Connect

    Strenge, D.L.; Chamberlain, P.J. II

    1994-11-01

    This report describes the generation of unit risk factors for use with the Graphical Information System (GIS) being developed by Advanced Sciences, Inc. for the Hanford Remedial Action Environmental Impact Statement. The GIS couples information on source inventory and environmental transport with unit risk factors to estimate the potential risk from contamination at all locations on the Hanford Site. The major components of the effort to generate the unit risk factors were: determination of pollutants to include in the study, definition of media of concern, and definition of exposure assessment scenarios, methods, and parameters. The selection of pollutants was based on inventory lists which indicated the pollutants likely to be encountered at the known waste sites. The final pollutants selected included 47 chemical pollutants and 101 radionuclides. Unit risk factors have been generated for all 148 pollutants per unit initial concentration in five media: soil (per unit mass), soil (per unit area), air, groundwater, and surface water. The exposure scenarios were selected as the basis for the unit risk factor generation. The endpoint in the exposure assessment analysis is expressed as risk of developing cancer for radionuclides and carcinogenic chemicals. For noncarcinogenic chemicals, the risk endpoint is the hazard quotient. The cancer incidence and hazard quotient values are evaluated for all exposure pathways, pollutants, and scenarios. The hazard index values and unit risk values are used by the GIS to produce maps of risk for the Hanford Site.

  5. Spatiotemporal Patterns of Evapotranspiration in Response to Multiple Environmental Factors Simulated by the Community Land Model

    SciTech Connect

    Shi, Xiaoying; Mao, Jiafu; Thornton, P.; Huang, Maoyi

    2013-04-25

    Spatiotemporal patterns of evapotranspiration (ET) over the period from 1982 to 2008 are investigated and attributed to multiple environmental factors using the Community Land Model version 4 (CLM4). Our results show that CLM4 captures the spatial distribution and interannual variability of ET well when compared to observation-based estimates. We find that climate dominates the predicted variability in ET. Elevated atmospheric CO2 concentration also plays an important role in modulating the trend of predicted ET over most land areas, and replaces climate to function as the dominant factor controlling ET changes over the North America, South America and Asia regions. Compared to the effect of climate and CO2 concentration, the roles of other factors such as nitrogen deposition, land use change and aerosol deposition are less pronounced and regionally dependent. The aerosol deposition contribution is the third most important factor for trends of ET over Europe, while it has the smallest impact over other regions. As ET is a dominant component of the terrestrial water cycle, our results suggest that environmental factors like elevated CO2, nitrogen and aerosol depositions, and land use change, in addition to climate, could have significant impact on future projections of water resources and water cycle dynamics at global and regional scales.

  6. Disruptive behaviour disorders: a systematic review of environmental antenatal and early years risk factors.

    PubMed

    Latimer, K; Wilson, P; Kemp, J; Thompson, L; Sim, F; Gillberg, C; Puckering, C; Minnis, H

    2012-09-01

    Disruptive behaviour disorders (DBDs), including attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) and conduct disorder (CD) are chronic disorders with significant overlap in aetiology and presentation. An integrative examination of environmental risk factors is lacking. Six literature searches of web-based bibliographic databases were completed to identify literature on DBDs in general and five disorders in particular: CD, ODD, ADHD, deficits of attention, motor control and perception, and reactive attachment disorder. Searches were filtered to focus on studies including diagnostic assessment, focussing on environmental risk and protective factors in the first 4 years of life. The database searches generated 9806 papers of which 47 were reviewed after filters had been applied. The evidence suggests links between a number of early life risk factors and DBDs, including prenatal cigarette smoking and alcohol use, prenatal viral illness, maternal stress and anxiety, low birthweight, peri-partum and early neonatal complications, parental stress and parenting styles in infancy, early deprivation, adoption and separation. Despite the understanding that there is sharing of risk factors between the DBDs, there has been a disproportionate focus on the role of certain risk factors at the expense of others and the field is weakened by difficulties in controlling for all potential confounding variables. PMID:22372737

  7. Underage drinking on saturday nights, sociodemographic and environmental risk factors: a cross-sectional study

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Excessive alcohol consumption in underage people is a rising phenomenon. A major proportion of the disease burden and deaths of young people in developed nations is attributable to alcohol abuse. The aim of this study was to investigate social, demographic and environmental factors that may raise the risk of Saturday night drinking and binge drinking among Italian school students. Methods The study was conducted on a sample of 845 Italian underage school students, by means of an anonymous, self-test questionnaire. Multivariate logistic regression was applied to identify independent risk factors for alcohol drinking and binge drinking. Ordered logistic regression was used to identify independent risk factors for harmful drinking patterns. Results The independent variables that confer a higher risk of drinking in underage students are older age classes, male sex, returning home after midnight, belonging to a group with little respect for the rules, or to a group where young people are not seen as leaders. The higher the perception of alcohol consumption by the group, the higher the risk. Spending time in bars or discos coincides with a two-fold or four-fold increase, respectively, in the risk of alcohol consumption. Conclusion Our findings show that certain environmental and social risk factors are associated with underage drinking. The most important role for preventing young people's exposure to these factors lies with the family, because only parents can exert the necessary control and provide a barrier against potentially harmful situations. PMID:21729273

  8. Environmental Signals Modulate ToxT-Dependent Virulence Factor Expression in Vibrio cholerae

    PubMed Central

    Schuhmacher, Darren A.; Klose, Karl E.

    1999-01-01

    The regulatory protein ToxT directly activates the transcription of virulence factors in Vibrio cholerae, including cholera toxin (CT) and the toxin-coregulated pilus (TCP). Specific environmental signals stimulate virulence factor expression by inducing the transcription of toxT. We demonstrate that transcriptional activation by the ToxT protein is also modulated by environmental signals. ToxT expressed from an inducible promoter activated high-level expression of CT and TCP in V. cholerae at 30°C, but expression of CT and TCP was significantly decreased or abolished by the addition of 0.4% bile to the medium and/or an increase of the temperature to 37°C. Also, expression of six ToxT-dependent TnphoA fusions was modulated by temperature and bile. Measurement of ToxT-dependent transcription of genes encoding CT and TCP by ctxAp- and tcpAp-luciferase fusions confirmed that negative regulation by 37°C or bile occurs at the transcriptional level in V. cholerae. Interestingly, ToxT-dependent transcription of these same promoters in Salmonella typhimurium was relatively insensitive to regulation by temperature or bile. These data are consistent with ToxT transcriptional activity being modulated by environmental signals in V. cholerae and demonstrate an additional level of complexity governing the expression of virulence factors in this pathogen. We propose that negative regulation of ToxT-dependent transcription by environmental signals prevents the incorrect temporal and spatial expression of virulence factors during cholera pathogenesis. PMID:10049382

  9. Geographical and environmental factors driving the increase in the Lyme disease vector Ixodes scapularis

    PubMed Central

    Khatchikian, Camilo E.; Prusinski, Melissa; Stone, Melissa; Backenson, P. Bryon; Wang, Ing-Nang; Levy, Michael Z.; Brisson, Dustin

    2013-01-01

    The population densities of many organisms have changed dramatically in recent history. Increases in the population density of medically relevant organisms are of particular importance to public health as they are often correlated with the emergence of infectious diseases in human populations. Our aim is to delineate increases in density of a common disease vector in North America, the blacklegged tick, and to identify the environmental factors correlated with these population dynamics. Empirical data that capture the growth of a population are often necessary to identify environmental factors associated with these dynamics. We analyzed temporally- and spatially-structured field collected data in a geographical information systems framework to describe the population growth of blacklegged ticks (Ixodes scapularis) and to identify environmental and climatic factors correlated with these dynamics. The density of the ticks increased throughout the study’s temporal and spatial ranges. Tick density increases were positively correlated with mild temperatures, low precipitation, low forest cover, and high urbanization. Importantly, models that accounted for these environmental factors accurately forecast future tick densities across the region. Tick density increased annually along the south-to-north gradient. These trends parallel the increases in human incidences of diseases commonly vectored by I. scapularis. For example, I. scapularis densities are correlated with human Lyme disease incidence, albeit in a non-linear manner that disappears at low tick densities, potentially indicating that a threshold tick density is needed to support epidemiologically-relevant levels of the Lyme disease bacterium. Our results demonstrate a connection between the biogeography of this species and public health. PMID:24371541

  10. Host Genetics and Environmental Factors Regulate Ecological Succession of the Mouse Colon Tissue-Associated Microbiota

    PubMed Central

    Holway, Nicholas; Shaxted, Mark; Butler, Matt; Clark, Natalie; Jamontt, Joanna; Watson, Robert P.; Sanmugalingam, Devika; Parkinson, Scott J.

    2012-01-01

    Background The integration of host genetics, environmental triggers and the microbiota is a recognised factor in the pathogenesis of barrier function diseases such as IBD. In order to determine how these factors interact to regulate the host immune response and ecological succession of the colon tissue-associated microbiota, we investigated the temporal interaction between the microbiota and the host following disruption of the colonic epithelial barrier. Methodology/Principal Findings Oral administration of DSS was applied as a mechanistic model of environmental damage of the colon and the resulting inflammation characterized for various parameters over time in WT and Nod2 KO mice. Results In WT mice, DSS damage exposed the host to the commensal flora and led to a migration of the tissue-associated bacteria from the epithelium to mucosal and submucosal layers correlating with changes in proinflammatory cytokine profiles and a progressive transition from acute to chronic inflammation of the colon. Tissue-associated bacteria levels peaked at day 21 post-DSS and declined thereafter, correlating with recruitment of innate immune cells and development of the adaptive immune response. Histological parameters, immune cell infiltration and cytokine biomarkers of inflammation were indistinguishable between Nod2 and WT littermates following DSS, however, Nod2 KO mice demonstrated significantly higher tissue-associated bacterial levels in the colon. DSS damage and Nod2 genotype independently regulated the community structure of the colon microbiota. Conclusions/Significance The results of these experiments demonstrate the integration of environmental and genetic factors in the ecological succession of the commensal flora in mammalian tissue. The association of Nod2 genotype (and other host polymorphisms) and environmental factors likely combine to influence the ecological succession of the tissue-associated microflora accounting in part for their association with the pathogenesis of inflammatory bowel diseases. PMID:22272321

  11. Consideration for solar system exploration - A system to Mars. [biomedical, environmental, and psychological factors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nicogossian, Arnauld E.; Garshnek, Victoria

    1989-01-01

    Biomedical issues related to a manned mission to Mars are reviewed. Consideration is given to cardiovascular deconditioning, hematological and immunological changes, bone and muscle changes, nutritional issues, and the development of physiological countermeasures. Environmental issues are discussed, including radiation hazards, toxic chemical exposure, and the cabin environment. Also, human factors, performance and behavior, medical screening of the crew, disease prediction, and health maintenance are examined.

  12. Epidemiologic and Environmental Risk Factors of Rift Valley Fever in Southern Africa from 2008 to 2011

    PubMed Central

    Glancey, Margaret M.; Linthicum, Kenneth J.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Background: Rift Valley fever (RVF) outbreaks have been associated with periods of widespread and above-normal rainfall over several months. Knowledge on the environmental factors influencing disease transmission dynamics has provided the basis for developing models to predict RVF outbreaks in Africa. From 2008 to 2011, South Africa experienced the worst wave of RVF outbreaks in almost 40 years. We investigated rainfall-associated environmental factors in southern Africa preceding these outbreaks. Methods: RVF epizootic records obtained from the World Animal Health Information Database (WAHID), documenting livestock species affected, location, and time, were analyzed. Environmental variables including rainfall and satellite-derived normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) data were collected and assessed in outbreak regions to understand the underlying drivers of the outbreaks. Results: The predominant domestic vertebrate species affected in 2008 and 2009 were cattle, when outbreaks were concentrated in the eastern provinces of South Africa. In 2010 and 2011, outbreaks occurred in the interior and southern provinces affecting over 16,000 sheep. The highest number of cases occurred between January and April but epidemics occurred in different regions every year, moving from the northeast of South Africa toward the southwest with each progressing year. The outbreaks showed a pattern of increased rainfall preceding epizootics ranging from 9 to 152 days; however, NDVI and rainfall were less correlated with the start of the outbreaks than has been observed in eastern Africa. Conclusions: Analyses of the multiyear RVF outbreaks of 2008 to 2011 in South Africa indicated that rainfall, NDVI, and other environmental and geographical factors, such as land use, drainage, and topography, play a role in disease emergence. Current and future investigations into these factors will be able to contribute to improving spatial accuracy of models to map risk areas, allowing adequate time for preparation and prevention before an outbreak occurs. PMID:26273812

  13. Consequences of early postnatal benzodiazepines exposure in rats. II. Social behavior

    PubMed Central

    Mikulecká, Anna; Šubrt, Martin; Pařízková, Martina; Mareš, Pavel; Kubová, Hana

    2014-01-01

    Social behavior represents an integral part of behavioral repertoire of rats particularly sensitive to pharmacological and environmental influences. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether early postnatal clonazepam (CZP) exposure can induce age-dependent changes related to expression of social behavior. The drug was administered from postnatal day (P) 7 until P11 at daily doses of 0.1, 0.5 and 1.0 mg/kg i.p. We designed three experiments to assess whether exposure to CZP affects social behavior in respect to the age of rats and the test circumstances, specifically their familiarity with test conditions during adolescence (P32), social behavior in juveniles and adolescents (P18–P42) and social behavior in a resident-intruder paradigm. The frequency and duration of a various patterns of social behavior related to play and social investigation not related to play were evaluated. The results showed that CZP postnatal exposure decreased social play behavior regardless of age and familiarity or unfamiliarity of experimental environment but did not affect the social investigation per se. When rats were confronted with an intruder in their home cages intense wrestling and inhibition of genital investigation were found. In conclusion, these findings show that short-term CZP postnatal exposure inhibits social play behavior and alters specific patterns of social behavior in an age and environment related manner. PMID:24982619

  14. Postnatal quality of life, depressive symptoms, and social support among women in southern India.

    PubMed

    Bodhare, Trupti N; Sethi, Pruthwiraj; Bele, Samir D; Gayatri, Dasari; Vivekanand, Achanta

    2015-01-01

    Evaluation of postnatal quality of life (QOL) has remained a poorly researched area in India. The present cross-sectional study assessed postnatal QOL, using the Mother Generated Index (MGI) and its associated risk factors, and was conducted during January-March 2013 among 274 mothers, 6-8 weeks postnatally. A semi-structured questionnaire was used to evaluate sociodemographic and obstetric characteristics and social support. Depressive symptoms were assessed by the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9) and QOL using the MGI. The vast majority (90.1 percent) of respondents in our study had a primary MGI score <5, those with significantly higher prevalence of physical problems and psychological distress. A total of 39.8 percent of respondents were screened as having other (not major) depressive symptoms and 4.7 percent as having major depressive symptoms. Multiple regression analysis revealed that age (β = 0.033, p = .018) and socioeconomic status (β = 0.156, p < .001) were significantly positively associated with QOL, while increased depressive symptom scores (β = -0.075, p < .001) were significantly negatively associated with QOL. A wide spectrum of QOL aspects were reported, including physical, emotional, social, and economic concerns by the mothers. Prevention, evaluation, and treatment of postnatal depressive symptoms and impaired QOL are warranted, taking into account the role of various biopsychosocial risk factors and specific concerns raised by the mothers. PMID:25719436

  15. Analysis and estimates of the attributable risk for environmental and genetic risk factors in gastric cancer in a Chinese population.

    PubMed

    Shen, Xiaobing; Zhang, Jiao; Yan, Yingying; Yang, Yufeng; Fu, Gang; Pu, Yuepu

    2009-01-01

    Development of gastric cancer is a multistage, multifactorial process. This study determined the population attributable risk for environmental and genetic risk factors in development of gastric cancer. A 1:1 cancer case-control study was undertaken in Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, China. A conditional-logistic regression model was used to determine environmental and genetic risk factors and calculate attributable risk (AR%) for each environmental and genetic risk factor in gastric cancer. In addition, the summary attributable risk (sAR) for all of the risk factors among 503 cases of gastric cancer patients and controls was determined. The environmental risk factors for gastric cancer in the Nanjing area were family history of tumor, consumption of pickled food, engorgement after hunger, irregular dietary habits, and lack of fruit intake. The genetic risk factors included the following genotypes: CYP2E1 wild, NAT2 M1 mutation, NAT2 slow-acetylators, XRCC1 194 mutation, MTHFR A1298C mutation, and IL-1B mutation. Combining environmental and genetic risk factors, sAR was 76.34%. Data suggest that genetic polymorphisms and environmental risk factors play concurrent roles in the development of gastric cancer. The results of this study indicate preventive strategies to avoid development of gastric cancer based on identified genetic polymorphisms and control of environmental risk factors. PMID:19492240

  16. [Studies on relationship of phytoplankton and water environmental factors in Shahu Lake].

    PubMed

    Qiu, Xiao-Cong; Zhao, Hong-Xue; Sun, Xiao-Xue

    2012-07-01

    Analysis approaches of correlation, multiple stepwise regression and canonical correspondence analysis were employed between phytoplankton and water environmental factors in ShaHu Lake based on the data from Apr. 2009 to Jan. 2010. The results showed that the correlation between phytoplankton density, phytoplankton biomass, chlorophyll-a and water temperature (WT), total nitrogen (TN), total phosphorus (TP), potassium permanganate index,5 days biochemical oxygen demand (BOD5) was positive, and phytoplankton density, phytoplankton biomass, chlorophyll-a and Secchi-depth (SD) was negatively correlated. Followed by the importance of environmental factors which affected phytoplankton density in Shahu Lake ranged as follows: WT, potassium permanganate index, SD, BOD5, TP, TN. Those affected phytoplankton biomass ranged as follows: WT,TP, potassium permanganate index,SD,TN. Those affected on chlorophyll-a ranged as follows: potassium permanganate index, WT, SD, TP, TN, BOD5. CCA result showed that 16 species of phytoplankton were divided into 3 groups which had the obvious seasonal distribution characteristics in Shahu Lake. SD, potassium permanganate index,WT, TN, TP were the main water environmental factors correlated with the distribution of phytoplankton community of Shahu Lake. PMID:23002600

  17. PERSONAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL RISK FACTORS SIGNIFICANTLY ASSOCIATED WITH ELEVATED BLOOD LEAD LEVELS IN RURAL THAI CHILDREN.

    PubMed

    Swaddiwudhipong, Witaya; Kavinum, Suporn; Papwijitsil, Ratchadaporn; Tontiwattanasap, Worawit; Khunyotying, Wanlee; Umpan, Jiraporn; BoonthuM, Ratchaneekorn; Kaewnate, Yingyot; Boonmee, Sasis; Thongchub, Winai; Rodsung, Thassanee

    2014-11-01

    A community-based study was conducted to determine personal risk factors and environmental sources of lead exposure for elevated blood lead levels (≥ 10 µg/dl, EBLLs) among rural children living at the Thailand-Myanmar border in Tak Province, northwestern Thailand. Six hundred ninety-five children aged 1-14 years old were screened for BLLs. Environmental specimens for lead measurements included samples of water from the streams, taps, and household containers, house floor dust, and foods. Possible lead release from the cooking ware was determined using the leaching method with acetic acid. The overall prevalence of EBLLs was 47.1% and the geometric mean level of blood lead was 9.16 µg/dl. Personal risk factors significantly associated with EBLLs included being male, younger age, anemia, and low weight-for-age. Significant environmental risk factors were exposure to a lead-acid battery of solar energy system and use of a non-certified metal cooking pot. Some families whose children had high BLLs reported production of lead bullets from the used batteries at home. About one-third of the house dust samples taken near batteries contained lead content above the recommended value, compared with none of those taken from other areas and from the houses with no batteries. The metal pots were safe for cooking rice but might be unsafe for acidic food preparation. Both nutritional intervention and lead exposure prevention programs are essential to reduce EBLLs in this population. PMID:26466436

  18. Is exposure to cyanobacteria an environmental risk factor for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and other neurodegenerative diseases?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bradley, Walter G.; Borenstein, Amy R.; Nelson, Lorene M.; Codd, Geoffrey A.; Rosen, Barry H.; Stommel, Elijah W.; Cox, Paul Alan

    2013-01-01

    There is a broad scientific consensus that amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is caused by gene-environment interactions. Mutations in genes underlying familial ALS (fALS) have been discovered in only 5–10% of the total population of ALS patients. Relatively little attention has been paid to environmental and lifestyle factors that may trigger the cascade of motor neuron death leading to the syndrome of ALS, although exposure to chemicals including lead and pesticides, and to agricultural environments, smoking, certain sports, and trauma have all been identified with an increased risk of ALS. There is a need for research to quantify the relative roles of each of the identified risk factors for ALS. Recent evidence has strengthened the theory that chronic environmental exposure to the neurotoxic amino acid β-N-methylamino-L-alanine (BMAA) produced by cyanobacteria may be an environmental risk factor for ALS. Here we describe methods that may be used to assess exposure to cyanobacteria, and hence potentially to BMAA, namely an epidemiologic questionnaire and direct and indirect methods for estimating the cyanobacterial load in ecosystems. Rigorous epidemiologic studies could determine the risks associated with exposure to cyanobacteria, and if combined with genetic analysis of ALS cases and controls could reveal etiologically important gene-environment interactions in genetically vulnerable individuals.

  19. Management, morphological, and environmental factors influencing Douglas-fir bark furrows in the Oregon Coast Range

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sheridan, Christopher D.; Puettmann, Klaus J.; Huso, Manuela M.P.; Hagar, Joan C.; Falk, Kristen R.

    2013-01-01

    Many land managers in the Pacific Northwest have the goal of increasing late-successional forest structures. Despite the documented importance of Douglas-fir tree bark structure in forested ecosystems, little is known about factors influencing bark development and how foresters can manage development. This study investigated the relative importance of tree size, growth, environmental