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Concept: Suggestion


Bed bugs have shown a recent and rapid global expansion that has been suggested to be caused by cheap air travel. How a small, flightless and anachoretic insect that hides within its host’s sleeping area manages to travel long distances is not yet clear. Bed bugs are attracted to the odour of sleeping humans and we suggest that soiled clothing may present a similarly attractive cue, allowing bed bugs to ‘hitch-hike’ around the world after aggregating in the laundry bags of travellers. We show that (1) soiled clothing is significantly more attractive than clean clothing to active bed bugs moving within a bedroom sized arena and (2) elevation of CO2 to a level that simulates human occupancy in the same arena appears to initiate search behaviour rather than direct it. Our results show, for the first time, how leaving worn clothing exposed in sleeping areas when travelling can be exploited by bed bugs to facilitate passive dispersal.

Concepts: Aggregate, Active, Human, Suggestion, Bedbug, Traveler, Hemiptera, Travel


The real-world experiences of young athletes follow a non-linear and dynamic trajectory and there is growing recognition that facing and overcoming a degree of challenge is desirable for aspiring elites and as such, should be recognized and employed. However, there are some misunderstandings of this “talent needs trauma” perspective with some research focusing excessively or incorrectly on the incidence of life and sport challenge as a feature of effective talent development. The objective of the study was to examine what factors associated with such “trauma” experiences may or may not discriminate between high, medium, and low achievers in sport, classified as super-champions, champions or almosts. A series of retrospective interviews were used with matched triads (i.e., super-champions, champions, or almosts) of performers (N = 54) from different sports. Data collection was organized in three phases. In the first phase, a graphic time line of each performer’s career was developed. The second phase explored the specific issues highlighted by each participant in a chronological sequence. The third phase was a retrospective reflection on “traumatic” motivators, coach/significant other inputs and psychological challenges experienced and skills employed. Data suggested qualitative differences between categories of performers, relating to several perceptual and experiential features of their development. No evidence was found for the necessity of major trauma as a feature of development. There was a lack of discrimination across categories of performers associated with the incidence of trauma and, more particularly, life or non-sport trauma. These findings suggest that differences between levels of adult achievement relate more to what performers bring to the challenges than what they experience. A periodized and progressive set of challenge, preceded and associated with specific skill development, would seem to offer the best pathway to success for the majority.

Concepts: Suggestion, Challenge, Psychology, Discrimination, The Rocky Road, Phase, Retrospective, Experience


Human language is a fundamentally cooperative enterprise, embodying fast-paced and extended social interactions. It has been suggested that it evolved as part of a larger adaptation of humans' species-unique forms of cooperation. Although our closest living relatives, bonobos and chimpanzees, show general cooperative abilities, their communicative interactions seem to lack the cooperative nature of human conversation. Here, we revisited this claim by conducting the first systematic comparison of communicative interactions in mother-infant dyads living in two different communities of bonobos (LuiKotale, DRC; Wamba, DRC) and chimpanzees (Taï South, Côte d'Ivoire; Kanyawara, Uganda) in the wild. Focusing on the communicative function of joint-travel-initiation, we applied parameters of conversation analysis to gestural exchanges between mothers and infants. Results showed that communicative exchanges in both species resemble cooperative turn-taking sequences in human conversation. While bonobos consistently addressed the recipient via gaze before signal initiation and used so-called overlapping responses, chimpanzees engaged in more extended negotiations, involving frequent response waiting and gestural sequences. Our results thus strengthen the hypothesis that interactional intelligence paved the way to the cooperative endeavour of human language and suggest that social matrices highly impact upon communication styles.

Concepts: Suggestion, Hominidae, Chimpanzee, Sociology, Communication, Bonobo, Cooperative, Human


The present study investigated the effects of suggestion on the processing of visual stimuli. Participants counted rare visual stimuli presented on a screen, once during a hypnosis condition where they were suggested that their vision of the screen is blocked by a virtual wooden board in front of their eyes and once during a control condition without suggestion. In the hypnosis condition, counting performance was about 20% worse than in the control condition. At the same time, the P3b amplitude of the event-related brain potential was about 37% reduced. Smaller P3b amplitudes were significantly associated with deficient counting performance, and this effect was largest in participants who reported the blockade as real. In contrast, earlier brain responses (N1, P2) that reflect basic processing of the visual stimuli were not affected by the suggested blockade. We conclude that the suggestion of the blockade affects later stages of visual perception, leaving early processes intact. This illustrates the impact of suggestions and the power of mind.

Concepts: Mind, Suggestion, Retina, Psychology, Affect, Effect, Brain, Visual perception


Prosociality has received increasing interest by non-human animal researchers since the initial discoveries that suggested it is not a uniquely human trait. However, thus far studies, even within the same species, have not garnered conclusive results. A prominent suggestion for this disparity is the effect methodology can have on prosocial responses in animals. We recently found evidence of prosociality in domestic dogs towards familiar conspecifics using a bar-pulling paradigm, in which a subject could pull a rope to deliver food to its partner. Therefore, the current study aimed to assess whether dogs would show a similar response in a different paradigm, based on the token exchange task paradigm frequently used with primates. In this task, dogs had the option to touch a token with their nose that delivered a reward to an adjacent receiver enclosure, which contained a familiar conspecific, a stranger or no dog at all. Crucially, we also included a social facilitation control condition, whereby the partner (stranger/familiar) was present but unable to access the food. We found that the familiarity effect remained consistent across tasks, with dogs of both the bar-pulling and token choice experiments providing more food to familiar partners than in a non-social control and providing less food to stranger partners than this same control. However, in contrast to our previous bar-pulling experiment, we could not exclude social facilitation as an underlying motive in the current task. We propose this difference in results between tasks may be related to increased task complexity in the token choice paradigm, making it harder for dogs to discriminate between the test and social facilitation conditions. Overall our findings suggest that subtle methodological changes can have an impact on prosocial behaviours in dogs and highlights the importance of controlling for social facilitation effects in such experiments.

Concepts: Dog health, Ideo motor response, Social psychology, Pet, Difference, Psychology, Dog, Suggestion


Cooperation is thought to be highly dependent on tolerance. For example, it has been suggested that dog-human cooperation has been enabled by selecting dogs for increased tolerance and reduced aggression during the course of domestication (‘emotional reactivity hypothesis’). However, based on observations of social interactions among members of captive packs, a few dog-wolf comparisons found contradictory results. In this study, we compared intraspecies aggression and tolerance of dogs and wolves raised and kept under identical conditions by investigating their agonistic behaviours and cofeeding during pair-wise food competition tests, a situation that has been directly linked to cooperation. We found that in wolves, dominant and subordinate members of the dyads monopolized the food and showed agonistic behaviours to a similar extent, whereas in dogs these behaviours were privileges of the high-ranking individuals. The fact that subordinate dogs rarely challenged their higher-ranking partners suggests a steeper dominance hierarchy in dogs than in wolves. Finally, wolves as well as dogs showed only rare and weak aggression towards each other. Therefore, we suggest that wolves are sufficiently tolerant to enable wolf-wolf cooperation, which in turn might have been the basis for the evolution of dog-human cooperation (canine cooperation hypothesis).

Concepts: Suggestion, Aggression, Toleration, Competition, Dominance hierarchy, Hierarchy


Retrospective studies suggest that online hemodiafiltration (OL-HDF) may reduce the risk of mortality compared with standard hemodialysis in patients with ESRD. We conducted a multicenter, open-label, randomized controlled trial in which we assigned 906 chronic hemodialysis patients either to continue hemodialysis (n=450) or to switch to high-efficiency postdilution OL-HDF (n=456). The primary outcome was all-cause mortality, and secondary outcomes included cardiovascular mortality, all-cause hospitalization, treatment tolerability, and laboratory data. Compared with patients who continued on hemodialysis, those assigned to OL-HDF had a 30% lower risk of all-cause mortality (hazard ratio [HR], 0.70; 95% confidence interval [95% CI], 0.53-0.92; P=0.01), a 33% lower risk of cardiovascular mortality (HR, 0.67; 95% CI, 0.44-1.02; P=0.06), and a 55% lower risk of infection-related mortality (HR, 0.45; 95% CI, 0.21-0.96; P=0.03). The estimated number needed to treat suggested that switching eight patients from hemodialysis to OL-HDF may prevent one annual death. The incidence rates of dialysis sessions complicated by hypotension and of all-cause hospitalization were lower in patients assigned to OL-HDF. In conclusion, high-efficiency postdilution OL-HDF reduces all-cause mortality compared with conventional hemodialysis.

Concepts: Suggestion, Outcome, Renal replacement therapy, Medical statistics, Dialysis, Randomized controlled trial, Epidemiology, Hemodialysis


In this paper we present the first comprehensive bibliometric analysis of eleven open-access mega-journals (OAMJs). OAMJs are a relatively recent phenomenon, and have been characterised as having four key characteristics: large size; broad disciplinary scope; a Gold-OA business model; and a peer-review policy that seeks to determine only the scientific soundness of the research rather than evaluate the novelty or significance of the work. Our investigation focuses on four key modes of analysis: journal outputs (the number of articles published and changes in output over time); OAMJ author characteristics (nationalities and institutional affiliations); subject areas (the disciplinary scope of OAMJs, and variations in sub-disciplinary output); and citation profiles (the citation distributions of each OAMJ, and the impact of citing journals). We found that while the total output of the eleven mega-journals grew by 14.9% between 2014 and 2015, this growth is largely attributable to the increased output of Scientific Reports and Medicine. We also found substantial variation in the geographical distribution of authors. Several journals have a relatively high proportion of Chinese authors, and we suggest this may be linked to these journals' high Journal Impact Factors (JIFs). The mega-journals were also found to vary in subject scope, with several journals publishing disproportionately high numbers of articles in certain sub-disciplines. Our citation analsysis offers support for Björk & Catani’s suggestion that OAMJs’s citation distributions can be similar to those of traditional journals, while noting considerable variation in citation rates across the eleven titles. We conclude that while the OAMJ term is useful as a means of grouping journals which share a set of key characteristics, there is no such thing as a “typical” mega-journal, and we suggest several areas for additional research that might help us better understand the current and future role of OAMJs in scholarly communication.

Concepts: Suggestion, Journal, Output, Bibliometrics, Scientific method, Academic publishing, Impact factor


Background.The currently used patch test concentration for formaldehyde is 1.0% (wt/vol) in water. However, clinical experience and previous studies suggest that 1.0% might be insufficient for detecting an optimized number of clinically relevant cases of contact allergy to formaldehyde. Objectives.To validate earlier patch test results for comparison of 1% (wt/vol) and 2% (wt/vol) formaldehyde in water, and to investigate co-reactivity with quaternium-15. Materials and methods.In 12 dermatology clinics, 3591 patients were routinely patch tested simultaneously with 2.0% (wt/vol) (0.60 mg/cm(2) ) and 1.0% (wt/vol) (0.30 mg/cm(2) ) formaldehyde. Micropipettes were used for delivering the exact dosage of the allergen. Results.Significantly more patients reacted to 2.0% formaldehyde than to 1.0% (3.4% versus 1.8%, p < 0.001). Overall, there were no sex differences between those reacting positively to 2.0% and 1.0%. Of 25 quaternium-15-positive patients, 4 (0.1%) reacted positively without reacting to formaldehyde. Conclusion.On the basis of the results of this multicentre study, as well as of previous studies, it can be suggested that 2.0% (wt/vol) in water formaldehyde should be used in routine patch testing in the baseline series.

Concepts: Andrew Martin, Sex, Quaternium-15, Suggestion, Contact dermatitis, Patch test, Eczema, Skin allergy test


Boar taint is due to androstenone and skatole (3-methyl-indole) accumulation in fat tissues. During a study to investigate the effect of immunocastration on fattening pigs, an outbreak of acute dysentery occurred caused by Lawsonia intracellularis and Brachyspira hyodysenteriae and resulted in cachexia and high mortality. Low androstenone levels in the immunocastrates (0.25±0.04μg/g liquid fat) suggested that the immunocastration had been effective, but unusually high skatole concentrations in fat tissues were found not only in entire males, but also in surgical castrates and immunocastrates (0.22±0.15, 0.14±0.08 and 0.18±0.14μg/g liquid fat, respectively). The findings suggest that boar taint can arise in cases of intestinal infections, even in castrated pigs.

Concepts: Effectiveness, Male, Surgery, Suggestion, Pig, Domestic pig, Castration