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Concept: Hong Kong


BACKGROUND: Patients with severe mental illness are at increased risk of developing metabolic disorders. The risk of metabolic syndrome in the Hong Kong general population is lower than that observed in western countries; however the prevalence of metabolic syndrome in patients with severe mental illness in Hong Kong is unknown. METHOD: This cross-sectional study aimed to estimate the prevalence of metabolic syndrome in patients with severe mental illness in Hong Kong and to identify the relationships between metabolic syndrome and socio-demographic, clinical and lifestyle factors. RESULTS: A total of 139 patients with a diagnosis of severe mental illness participated in the study. The unadjusted prevalence of metabolic syndrome was 35%. The relative risk of metabolic syndrome in comparison with the general Hong Kong population was 2.008 (95% CI 1.59-2.53, p < 0.001). In a logistic regression model sleep disruption and being prescribed first generation antipsychotics were significantly associated with the syndrome, whilst eating less than 3 portions of fruit/vegetables per day and being married were weakly associated. CONCLUSION: The results demonstrate that metabolic syndrome is highly prevalent and that physical health inequalities in patients with severe mental illness in Hong Kong are similar to those observed in western countries. The results provide sufficient evidence to support the need for intervention studies in this setting and reinforce the requirement to conduct regular physical health checks for all patients with severe mental illness.

Concepts: Health care, Regression analysis, Epidemiology, Nutrition, Medical statistics, Cross-sectional study, Mental illness, Hong Kong


During March 2013-February 24, 2017, annual epidemics of avian influenza A(H7N9) in China resulted in 1,258 avian influenza A(H7N9) virus infections in humans being reported to the World Health Organization (WHO) by the National Health and Family Planning Commission of China and other regional sources (1). During the first four epidemics, 88% of patients developed pneumonia, 68% were admitted to an intensive care unit, and 41% died (2). Candidate vaccine viruses (CVVs) were developed, and vaccine was manufactured based on representative viruses detected after the emergence of A(H7N9) virus in humans in 2013. During the ongoing fifth epidemic (beginning October 1, 2016),* 460 human infections with A(H7N9) virus have been reported, including 453 in mainland China, six associated with travel to mainland China from Hong Kong (four cases), Macao (one) and Taiwan (one), and one in an asymptomatic poultry worker in Macao (1). Although the clinical characteristics and risk factors for human infections do not appear to have changed (2,3), the reported human infections during the fifth epidemic represent a significant increase compared with the first four epidemics, which resulted in 135 (first epidemic), 320 (second), 226 (third), and 119 (fourth epidemic) human infections (2). Most human infections continue to result in severe respiratory illness and have been associated with poultry exposure. Although some limited human-to-human spread continues to be identified, no sustained human-to-human A(H7N9) transmission has been observed (2,3).

Concepts: Virus, Influenza, Avian influenza, People's Republic of China, Pandemic, Influenza vaccine, World Health Organization, Hong Kong


International Conference on Nanopore Technology (Shenzhen), 30 March-1 April 2017, Shenzhen, China The International Conference on Nanopore Technology (Shenzhen) was held from 30 March to 1 April 2017 in Shenzhen, China. The goal of the meeting was threefold: leverage the unique properties of nanopore technology to promote transformative advances in medicine, encourage cross-disciplinary collaborations in the research community within China and abroad; and discuss critical challenges that need to be addressed to rapidly advance the field. The meeting was chaired by Peixuan Guo, Endowed chair professor and Director of The Center for RNA Nanobiotechnology & Nanomedicine at The Ohio State University, USA and co-chaired by Xian-En Zhang, distinguished professor of the Institute of Biophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, China. The conference was attended by more than 300 academic researchers, hospital administrators, government leaders and scientists from many disciplines across the country from both academic institutions and industry.

Concepts: United States, Science, Management, University, Ohio, Hong Kong, Tenure, Ohio State University


Recent taxonomic and molecular work on the eagle rays (Family Myliobatidae) revealed a cryptic species in the northwest Pacific. This species is formally described as Aetobatus narutobiei sp. nov. and compared to its congeners. Aetobatus narutobiei is found in eastern Vietnam, Hong Kong, China, Korea and southern Japan. It was previously considered to be conspecific with Aetobatus flagellum, but these species differ in size, structure of the NADH2 and CO1 genes, some morphological and meristic characters and colouration. Aetobatus narutobiei is particularly abundant in Ariake Bay in southern Japan where it is considered a pest species that predates heavily on farmed bivalve stocks and is culled annually as part of a ‘predator control’ program. The discovery of A. narutobiei highlights the paucity of detailed taxonomic research on this group of rays. This discovery impacts on current conservation assessments of A. flagellum and these need to be revised based on the findings of this study.

Concepts: Predation, China, People's Republic of China, Pacific Ocean, Hong Kong, Spotted eagle ray, Eagle ray, Myliobatidae


With the development of the Internet, Internet vigilantism (netilantism) has emerged as a new phenomenon in recent years. Although there are several qualitative studies explaining netilantism, there is little empirical research on public perceptions of netilantism. This article aims to outline Hong Kong university students' general perception of netilantism and investigate the differences between different roles in netilantism. By using empowerment theory as the theoretical framework, we will investigate whether Internet vigilantes (netilantes) (a) perceive the criminal justice system as effective, (b) possess high levels of self-efficacy in the cyber world, and © tend to believe netilantism can achieve social justice. Findings support the proposition that human flesh search engine is an empowerment tool for the netilante enabling him or her to achieve his goal of social justice. Different roles in netilantism (i.e., bystander, netilante, victim, and none of the above roles) have different perceptions of netilantism and the criminal justice system. The results will be explained by studying two representative cases of netilantism-the “Government Official Molestation” case and the “Cat Abuse in Shun Tin Village” case from China and Hong Kong, respectively.

Concepts: Scientific method, Understanding, Perception, Theory, Criminal justice, Chinese language, Hong Kong, Internet vigilantism


To estimate the prevalence of, and risk factors associated with, sexual dysfunction among Hong Kong Chinese married men aged 30-60 years.

Concepts: Sexual intercourse, Chinese language, Hong Kong, Cantonese people, Hong Kong people, Standard Mandarin, Teochew people, Bruce Lee


BACKGROUND:: Although the incidence rates of breast cancer have been increasing remarkably in Hong Kong over the last 2 decades, little is known on breast cancer screening practices among this group of women. OBJECTIVES:: This study aimed to report breast cancer screening practices among Hong Kong Chinese women and to examine the relationship between (1) demographic factors and (2) the modified Chinese Breast Cancer Screening Beliefs Questionnaire (CBCSB) score and women’s breast screening behaviors. METHODS:: A descriptive and cross-sectional method was used. Both English and Chinese versions of the modified CBCSB were administered. Of 946 Hong Kong Chinese women older than 18 years and invited to participate in the study, 753 (79.6%) completed and returned the questionnaire. RESULTS:: The majority of participants (70%-90%) had heard of breast self-examination (BSE), clinical breast examination (CBE), and mammograms. Only 33.3% performed a BSE monthly; 37.8% and 32.7% of women within the targeted age group had a CBE annually and had a mammogram every 2 years, respectively. Being married and part-time employment were positively associated with women who performed BSE as recommended. In terms of modified CBCSB score, women who had BSE, CBE, and mammogram as recommended had significantly higher scores on the subscale attitudes to health check-up. CONCLUSION:: Attitudes toward health check-up was influential in compliance with breast cancer screening practices among Chinese-Australian women. IMPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICE:: Effort should be focused on specific subgroups of Hong Kong Chinese women, to fully understand the barriers involved in participating in breast cancer screening practices.

Concepts: Cancer, Breast cancer, Oncology, Breast, Mammography, Hong Kong, Cantonese people, Breast self-examination


Skin appearance is influenced by biophysical parameters. Seasonal changes affect the condition of normal skin and may trigger cutaneous disorders.

Concepts: People's Republic of China, Skin, Guangdong, Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Beijing, Historical capitals of China, Sun Yat-sen University


The purpose of this study was to assess the feasibility of community screening for atrial fibrillation (AF) using a smartphone-based wireless single-lead ECG (SL-ECG) and to generate epidemiological data on the prevalence and risk factors of AF in Hong Kong.

Concepts: Epidemiology, Cardiology, Atrial fibrillation, Hong Kong, Cantonese people, Hong Kong people, Bruce Lee


Previous publications have described unethical organ procurement procedures in the People’s Republic of China. International awareness and condemnation contributed to the announcement abolishing the procurement of organs from executed prisoners starting from January 2015. Eighteen months after the announcement, and aligned with the upcoming International Congress of the Transplantation Society in Hong Kong, this paper revisits the topic and discusses whether the declared reform has indeed been implemented. It is noticeable that China has neither addressed nor included in the reform a pledge to end the procurement of organs from prisoners of conscience, nor have they initiated any legislative amendments. Recent reports have discussed an implausible discrepancy of officially reported steady annual transplant numbers and a steep expansion of the transplant infrastructure in China. This paper expresses the viewpoint that, in the current context, it is not possible to verify the veracity of the announced changes and it thus remains premature to include China as an ethical partner in the international transplant community. Until we have independent and objective evidence of a complete cessation of unethical organ procurement from prisoners, the medical community has a professional responsibility to maintain the academic embargo on Chinese transplant professionals. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

Concepts: People's Republic of China, Organ transplant, Chinese language, Republic of China, North Korea, Copyright, Hong Kong, People's Republic