SciCombinator

Discover the most talked about and latest scientific content & concepts.

Concept: Term

56

To investigate the long term effects of continuous subcutaneous insulin infusion (insulin pump therapy) on cardiovascular diseases and mortality in people with type 1 diabetes.

Concepts: Insulin, Diabetes mellitus type 2, Diabetes mellitus, Diabetes mellitus type 1, Diabetes, Term, Insulin pump, Subcutaneous injection

54

Recent research suggests that frequently switching between various forms of media (i.e. ‘media multitasking’) is associated with diminished attentional abilities, a disconcerting result given the prevalence of media multitasking in today’s society. In the present study, we sought to investigate the extent to which the deficits associated with frequent media multitasking can be temporarily ameliorated via a short-term mindfulness intervention previously shown to produce beneficial effects on the attentional abilities of normally functioning individuals. Consistent with previous work, we found: (1) that heavy media multitaskers showed generally poorer attentional abilities than light media multitaskers and (2) that all participants showed benefits from the short-term mindfulness intervention. Furthermore, we found that the benefits of the short-term mindfulness intervention were not equivalently large across participants. Instead, these benefits were disproportionately large in the heavy media multitaskers. While the positive outcomes were short-lived, this opens the possibility of performing long-term interventions with the goal of realizing lasting gains in this population.

Concepts: Present, Time, Term, Intervention, Frequentative

52

Pseudomature behavior-ranging from minor delinquency to precocious romantic involvement-is widely viewed as a nearly normative feature of adolescence. When such behavior occurs early in adolescence, however, it was hypothesized to reflect a misguided overemphasis upon impressing peers and was considered likely to predict long-term adjustment problems. In a multimethod, multireporter study following a community sample of 184 adolescents from ages 13 to 23, early adolescent pseudomature behavior was linked cross-sectionally to a heightened desire for peer popularity and to short-term success with peers. Longitudinal results, however, supported the study’s central hypothesis: Early adolescent pseudomature behavior predicted long-term difficulties in close relationships, as well as significant problems with alcohol and substance use, and elevated levels of criminal behavior.

Concepts: Scientific method, Prediction, Economics, Hypothesis, Adolescence, Term, Thought experiment, Peer group

41

It is known that honeybees use vibrational communication pathways to transfer information. One honeybee signal that has been previously investigated is the short vibrational pulse named the ‘stop signal’, because its inhibitory effect is generally the most accepted interpretation. The present study demonstrates long term (over 9 months) automated in-situ non-invasive monitoring of a honeybee vibrational pulse with the same characteristics of what has previously been described as a stop signal using ultra-sensitive accelerometers embedded in the honeycomb located at the heart of honeybee colonies. We show that the signal is very common and highly repeatable, occurring mainly at night with a distinct decrease in instances towards midday, and that it can be elicited en masse from bees following the gentle shaking or knocking of their hive with distinct evidence of habituation. The results of our study suggest that this vibrational pulse is generated under many different circumstances, thereby unifying previous publication’s conflicting definitions, and we demonstrate that this pulse can be generated in response to a surprise stimulus. This work suggests that, using an artificial stimulus and monitoring the changes in the features of this signal could provide a sensitive tool to assess colony status.

Concepts: Time, Honey bee, Beekeeping, Term, The Signal, Bumblebee, Apidae, Honeycomb

37

Survival after sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) remains low, and tools for improved prediction of patients at long-term risk for SCA are lacking. Alternative short-term approaches aimed at preemptive risk stratification and prevention are needed.

Concepts: Cardiac arrest, Asystole, Term, Cardiac tamponade, Sudden cardiac death, Finance

34

Heart failure is a common long term condition affecting around 900 000 people in the UK and patients commonly present to primary care. The prognosis of patients with a code of heart failure in their primary care record is unknown.

Concepts: Time, Medical terms, United Kingdom, Medical diagnosis, English language, Term, Primary school, Anarchy in the U.K.

34

Obesity has become a world-wide epidemic and is spreading to countries with emerging economies. Previously tested interventions are often too costly to maintain in the long term. This leaves a need for improved strategies for management of the epidemic. Nudge Theory presents a new collection of methods, deemed “nudges”, which have the potential for low-cost and broad application to guide healthier lifestyle choices without the need for restrictive regulation. There has not yet been a large-scale examination of the effectiveness of nudges, despite several policy making bodies now considering their use.

Concepts: Epidemiology, Nutrition, Economics, Policy, Term

32

Free-roaming cats are exposed to a variety of risks, including involvement in road traffic accidents. One way of mitigating these risks is to contain cats, for example using an electronic boundary fence system that delivers an electric ‘correction’ via a collar if a cat ignores a warning cue and attempts to cross the boundary. However, concerns have been expressed over the welfare impact of such systems. Our aim was to determine if long-term exposure to an electronic containment system was associated with reduced cat welfare. We compared 46 owned domestic cats: 23 cats that had been contained by an electronic containment system for more than 12 months (AF group); and 23 cats with no containment system that were able to roam more widely (C group). We assessed the cats' behavioural responses and welfare via four behavioural tests (unfamiliar person test; novel object test; sudden noise test; cognitive bias test) and an owner questionnaire. In the unfamiliar person test, C group lip-licked more than the AF group, whilst the AF group looked at, explored and interacted more with the unfamiliar person than C group. In the novel object test, the AF group looked at and explored the object more than C group. No significant differences were found between AF and C groups for the sudden noise or cognitive bias tests. Regarding the questionnaire, C group owners thought their cats showed more irritable behaviour and AF owners thought that their cats toileted inappropriately more often than C owners. Overall, AF cats were less neophobic than C cats and there was no evidence of significant differences between the populations in general affective state. These findings indicate that an electronic boundary fence with clear pre-warning cues does not impair the long term quality of life of cats.

Concepts: Psychology, Critical thinking, Cognition, Tram accident, Term, Cat, Ownership, Cats

32

Despite the fact that a thorough, lengthy and costly evaluation of genetically engineered (GE) crop plants (including compositional analysis and toxicological tests) is imposed before marketing some European citizens remain sceptical of the safety of GE food and feed. In this context, are additional tests necessary? If so, what can we learn from them? To address these questions, we examined data from 60 recent high-throughput “-omics” comparisons between GE and non-GE crop lines and 17 recent long term animal feeding studies (longer than the classical 90-day subchronic toxicological tests), as well as 16 multigenerational studies on animals. The “-omics” comparisons revealed that the genetic modification has less impact on plant gene expression and composition than that of conventional plant breeding. Moreover, environmental factors (such as field location, sampling time, or agricultural practices) have a greater impact than transgenesis. None of these “-omics” profiling studies has raised new safety concerns about GE varieties; neither did the long-term and multigenerational studies on animals. Therefore, there is no need to perform such long term studies in a case-by-case approach, unless reasonable doubt still exists after conducting a 90-day feeding test. In addition, plant compositional analysis and “-omics” profiling do not indicate that toxicological tests should be mandatory. We discuss what complementary fundamental studies should be performed and how to choose the most efficient experimental design in order to assess risks associated with new GE traits. The possible need to update the current regulatory framework is discussed.

Concepts: DNA, Genetics, Molecular biology, Food, Term, Genetically modified food, Genetic engineering, Transgene

31

Many women with early-stage breast cancer are working at the time of diagnosis and survive without disease recurrence. The short-term impact of chemotherapy receipt on employment has been demonstrated, but the long-term impact merits further research.

Concepts: Time, Cancer, Breast cancer, Metastasis, Estrogen, Chemotherapy, Chemotherapy regimens, Term