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1.  Loneliness and Cognitive Function in Older Adults: Findings From the Chinese Longitudinal Healthy Longevity Survey 
To examine the relationship between loneliness and cognitive function and to explore the mediating role of physical health on the loneliness–cognition relationship in Chinese older adults (OAs).
Data came from a nationally representative sample of 14,199 Chinese OAs (aged 65+) from 2002, 2005, 2008, and 2011 waves of the Chinese Longitudinal Healthy Longevity Survey. A latent variable cross-lagged panel model combined with mediation analysis was used to determine the relationship between loneliness and cognitive function and the mediating effect of increase in the number of chronic conditions (ΔNCCs) on the ascertained loneliness–cognition relationship.
Severe loneliness at prior assessment points was significantly associated with poorer cognitive function at subsequent assessments, and vice versa. The ΔNCCs partially mediated this prospective reciprocal relationships, accounting for 2.58% of the total effect of loneliness on cognition and 4.44% of the total effect of cognition on loneliness, respectively.
Loneliness may predict subsequent cognitive decline, and vice versa. This loneliness–cognition relationship is partially explained by their impact on physical health. Multidisciplinary interventions aimed at reducing loneliness and cognitive decline per se and their associated risk factors as well as improving chronic illness management would be beneficial for emotional well-being and cognitive health in OAs.
PMCID: PMC5156491  PMID: 27013536
Chronic condition; Cognitive function; Cross-lagged panel analysis; Loneliness; Mediation; Older adults
2.  Lack of association between the APLNR variant rs9943582 with ischemic stroke in the Chinese Han GeneID population 
Oncotarget  2017;8(64):107678-107684.
Stroke is one of the most common causes of death worldwide. Genetic risk factors have been found to play important roles in the pathology of ischemic stroke. In a previous genome-wide association study, a functional variant (rs9943582, –154G/A) in the 5’ flanking region of the apelin receptor gene (APLNR) was shown to be significantly associated with stroke in the Japanese population. However, the association required validation in other ethnicities. To validate the genetic relationship between APLNR and ischemic stroke in the Chinese Han population, we genotyped rs9943582 in a case–control population containing 1,158 ischemic stroke patients and 1,265 common controls enrolled from the GeneID database, and performed a genetic association study. We detected no allelic or genotypic associations between rs9943582 and ischemic stroke in the Chinese Han GeneID population, although the study population provided sufficient statistical power. This finding indicates that the association between the APLNR variant and ischemic stroke or atherosclerosis may need further validation.
PMCID: PMC5746099
atherosclerosis; ischemic stroke; association studies; APLNR; Rs9943582
3.  One‐Step Reforming of CO2 and CH4 into High‐Value Liquid Chemicals and Fuels at Room Temperature by Plasma‐Driven Catalysis 
The conversion of CO2 with CH4 into liquid fuels and chemicals in a single‐step catalytic process that bypasses the production of syngas remains a challenge. In this study, liquid fuels and chemicals (e.g., acetic acid, methanol, ethanol, and formaldehyde) were synthesized in a one‐step process from CO2 and CH4 at room temperature (30 °C) and atmospheric pressure for the first time by using a novel plasma reactor with a water electrode. The total selectivity to oxygenates was approximately 50–60 %, with acetic acid being the major component at 40.2 % selectivity, the highest value reported for acetic acid thus far. Interestingly, the direct plasma synthesis of acetic acid from CH4 and CO2 is an ideal reaction with 100 % atom economy, but it is almost impossible by thermal catalysis owing to the significant thermodynamic barrier. The combination of plasma and catalyst in this process shows great potential for manipulating the distribution of liquid chemical products in a given process.
PMCID: PMC5656906  PMID: 28842938
carbon dioxide; heterogeneous catalysis; methane; plasma chemistry; reforming
4.  On the implication of structural zeros as independent variables in regression analysis: applications to alcohol research 
Journal of data science : JDS  2014;12(3):439-460.
In alcohol studies, drinking outcomes such as number of days of any alcohol drinking (DAD) over a period of time do not precisely capture the differences among subjects in a study population of interest. For example, the value of 0 on DAD could mean that the subject was continually abstinent from drinking such as lifetime abstainers or the subject was alcoholic, but happened not to use any alcohol during the period of interest. In statistics, zeros of the first kind are called structural zeros, to distinguish them from the sampling zeros of the second type. As the example indicates, the structural and sampling zeros represent two groups of subjects with quite different psychosocial outcomes. In the literature on alcohol use, although many recent studies have begun to explicitly account for the differences between the two types of zeros in modeling drinking variables as a response, none has acknowledged the implications of the different types of zeros when such modeling drinking variables are used as a predictor. This paper serves as the first attempt to tackle the latter issue and illustrate the importance of disentangling the structural and sampling zeros by using simulated as well as real study data.
PMCID: PMC5628625
number of days of drinking alcohol; NHANES; structural zero; zero-inflated count data; zero-inflated models for count data
5.  Preliminary Efficacy of a Comprehensive HIV Prevention Intervention for Abstinent Adolescent Girls: Pilot Study Findings 
Research in nursing & health  2009;32(6):569-581.
We developed and pilot-tested a comprehensive HIV prevention/sexual risk reduction intervention with 54 sexually abstinent girls and estimated the effect of the intervention on three antecedents of sexual risk behavior: information, motivation, and behavioral skills. Girls ages 14–18 were randomized into either (a) an AbsPlus intervention or (b) a structurally equivalent control group. Assessments were obtained at baseline and 3 months follow-up using audio computer assisted self-interview. The intervention resulted in a large effect for information (d = 1.11); small to large effects for the motivational measures (d = .34−.88), and a moderate effect for a measure of behavioral skills (d = .67). The results indicate that antecedents of sexual risk behavior change were improved by a gender-specific theoretically guided intervention.
PMCID: PMC5624337  PMID: 19877164
adolescent; female; HIV prevention; abstinence
6.  De Novo FGF12 (Fibroblast Growth Factor 12) Functional Variation Is Potentially Associated With Idiopathic Ventricular Tachycardia 
Idiopathic ventricular tachycardia (VT) is a type of cardiac arrhythmia occurring in structurally normal hearts. The heritability of idiopathic VT remains to be clarified, and numerous genetic factors responsible for development of idiopathic VT are as yet unclear. Variations in FGF12 (fibroblast growth factor 12), which is expressed in the human ventricle and modulates the cardiac Na+ channel NaV1.5, may play an important role in the genetic pathogenesis of VT.
Methods and Results
We tested the hypothesis that genetic variations in FGF12 are associated with VT in 2 independent Chinese cohorts and resequenced all the exons and exon–intron boundaries and the 5′ and 3′ untranslated regions of FGF12 in 320 unrelated participants with idiopathic VT. For population‐based case–control association studies, we chose 3 single‐nucleotide polymorphisms—rs1460922, rs4687326, and rs2686464—which included all the exons of FGF12. The results showed that the single‐nucleotide polymorphism rs1460922 in FGF12 was significantly associated with VT after adjusting for covariates of sex and age in 2 independent Chinese populations: adjusted P=0.015 (odds ratio: 1.54 [95% CI, 1.09–2.19]) in the discovery sample, adjusted P=0.018 (odds ratio: 1.64 [95% CI, 1.09–2.48]) in the replication sample, and adjusted P=2.52E‐04 (odds ratio: 1.59 [95% CI, 1.24–2.03]) in the combined sample. After resequencing all amino acid coding regions and untranslated regions of FGF12, 5 rare variations were identified. The result of western blotting revealed that a de novo functional variation, p.P211Q (1.84% of 163 patients with right ventricular outflow tract VT), could downregulate FGF12 expression significantly.
In this study, we observed that rs1460922 of FGF12 was significantly associated with VT and identified that a de novo variation of FGF12 may be an important genetic risk factor for the pathogenesis of VT.
PMCID: PMC5586455  PMID: 28775062
fibroblast growth factor 12; genetic risk factor; variations; ventricular tachycardia; Arrhythmias; Genetic, Association Studies
7.  Non‐Thermal Plasma Activation of Gold‐Based Catalysts for Low‐Temperature Water–Gas Shift Catalysis 
Non‐thermal plasma activation has been used to enable low‐temperature water‐gas shift over a Au/CeZrO4 catalyst. The activity obtained was comparable with that attained by heating the catalyst to 180 °C providing an opportunity for the hydrogen production to be obtained under conditions where the thermodynamic limitations are minimal. Using in situ diffuse reflectance infrared Fourier transform spectroscopy (DRIFTS), structural changes associated with the gold nanoparticles in the catalyst have been observed which are not found under thermal activation indicating a weakening of the Au−CO bond and a change in the mechanism of deactivation.
PMCID: PMC5485072  PMID: 28402590
carbon monoxide; heterogeneous catalysis; plasma catalysis; thermodynamic equilibrium; water–gas shift reaction
8.  The Differences and Similarities Between Two-Sample T-Test and Paired T-Test 
Shanghai Archives of Psychiatry  null;29(3):184-188.
In clinical research, comparisons of the results from experimental and control groups are often encountered. The two-sample t-test (also called independent samples t-test) and the paired t-test are probably the most widely used tests in statistics for the comparison of mean values between two samples. However, confusion exists with regard to the use of the two test methods, resulting in their inappropriate use. In this paper, we discuss the differences and similarities between these two t-tests. Three examples are used to illustrate the calculation procedures of the two-sample t-test and paired t-test.
PMCID: PMC5579465  PMID: 28904516
independent t-test; paired t-test; pre- and post-treatment; matched paired data
9.  Social Structure and Depression in TrevorSpace 
We discover patterns related to depression in the social graph of an online community of approximately 20,000 lesbian, gay, and bisexual, transgender, and questioning youth. With survey data on fewer than two hundred community members and the network graph of the entire community (which is completely anonymous except for the survey responses), we detected statistically significant correlations between a number of graph properties and those TrevorSpace users showing a higher likelihood of depression, according to the Patient Healthcare Questionnaire-9, a standard instrument for estimating depression. Our results suggest that those who are less depressed are more deeply integrated into the social fabric of TrevorSpace than those who are more depressed. Our techniques may apply to other hard-to-reach online communities, like gay men on Facebook, where obtaining detailed information about individuals is difficult or expensive, but obtaining the social graph is not.
PMCID: PMC5421990
LGBT youth; social network analysis; social media; H.5.m. Information Interfaces and Presentation (e.g. HCI): Group and Organization Interfaces
10.  Genomic Variant in CAV1 Increases Susceptibility to Coronary Artery Disease and Myocardial Infarction 
Atherosclerosis  2016;246:148-156.
The CAV1 gene encodes caveolin-1 expressed in cell types relevant to atherosclerosis. Cav-1-null mice showed a protective effect on atherosclerosis under the ApoE−/− background. However, it is unknown whether CAV1 is linked to CAD and MI in humans. In this study we analyzed a tagSNP for CAV1 in intron 2, rs3807989, for potential association with CAD.
Methods and Results
We performed case-control association studies in three independent Chinese Han populations from GeneID, including 1,249 CAD cases and 841 controls in Population I, 1,260 cases and 833 controls in Population II and 790 cases and 1,212 controls in Population III (a total of 3,299 cases and 2,886 controls). We identified significant association between rs3807989 and CAD in three independent populations and in the combined population (Padj=2.18×10−5, OR=1.19 for minor allele A). We also detected significant association between rs3807989 and MI (Padj=5.43×10−5, OR=1.23 for allele A). Allele A of SNP rs3807989 was also associated with a decreased level of LDL cholesterol. Although rs3807989 is a tagSNP for both CAV1 and nearby CAV2, allele A of SNP rs3807989 was associated with an increased expression level of CAV1 (both mRNA and protein), but not CAV2.
The data in this study demonstrated that rs3807989 at the CAV1/CAV2 locus was associated with significant risk of CAD and MI by increasing expression CAV1 (but not CAV2). Thus, CAV1 becomes a strong candidate susceptibility gene for CAD/MI in humans.
PMCID: PMC4764411  PMID: 26775120
Coronary artery disease (CAD) and myocardial infarction (MI); Atherosclerosis; Single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP); rs3807989; CAV1 and CAV2; Genome-Wide Association Study (GWAS)
11.  Genomic Variant in IL-37 Confers A Significant Risk of Coronary Artery Disease 
Scientific Reports  2017;7:42175.
The interleukin 1 family plays an important role in the immune and inflammatory responses. Coronary artery disease (CAD) is a chronic inflammatory disease. However, the genetic association between IL-37, the seventh member of the IL-1 family, and CAD is unknown. Here we show that a single nucleotide polymorphism in the IL-37 gene (rs3811047) confers a significant risk of CAD. We have performed an association analysis between rs3811047 and CAD in two independent populations with 2,501 patients and 3,116 controls from China. Quantitative RT-PCR analysis has been performed to determine if the IL-37 expression level is influenced by rs3811047. We show that the minor allele A of rs3811047 is significantly associated with CAD in two independent populations under a recessive model (Padj = 5.51 × 10−3/OR = 1.56 in the GeneID Northernern population and Padj = 1.23 × 10−3/OR = 1.45 in the GeneID Central population). The association became more significant in the combined population (Padj = 9.70 × 10−6/OR = 1.47). Moreover, the association remains significant in a CAD case control population matched for age and sex. Allele A of rs3811047 shows significant association with a decreased mRNA expression level of IL-37 (n = 168, P = 3.78 × 10−4). These data suggest that IL37 is a new susceptibility gene for CAD, which provides a potential target for the prevention and treatment of CAD.
PMCID: PMC5299598  PMID: 28181534
12.  Identification of Rare Variants in TNNI3 with Atrial Fibrillation in a Chinese GeneID Population 
Despite advances by genome-wide association studies (GWAS), much of heritability of common human diseases remains missing, a phenomenon referred to as ‘missing heritability’. One potential cause for ‘missing heritability’ is the rare susceptibility variants overlooked by GWAS. Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common arrhythmia seen at hospitals and increases risk of stroke by 5-fold and doubles risk of heart failure and sudden death. Here we studied one large Chinese family with AF and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). Whole-exome sequencing analysis identified a mutation in TNNI3, R186Q, that co-segregated with the disease in the family, but did not exist in >1,583 controls, suggesting that R186Q causes AF and HCM. High-resolution melting curve analysis and direct DNA sequence analysis were then used to screen mutations in all exons and exon-intron boundaries of TNNI3 in a panel of 1,127 unrelated AF patients and 1,583 non-AF subjects. Four novel missense variants were identified in TNNI3, including E64G, M154L, E187G and D196G in four independent AF patients, but no variant was found in 1,583 non-AF subjects. All variants were not found in public databases, including the ExAC Browser database with 60,706 exomes. These data suggests that rare TNNI3 variants are associated with AF (P=0.03). TNNI3 encodes troponin I, a key regulator of the contraction-relaxation function of cardiac muscle and was not previously implicated in AF. Thus, this study may identify a new biological pathway for the pathogenesis of AF and provides evidence to support the rare variant hypothesis for missing heritability.
PMCID: PMC4713376  PMID: 26169204
atrial fibrillation (AF); hypertrophic cardiomyopathy; cardiac troponin I; TNNI3 mutations; whole exome sequencing
13.  Significant association of SNP rs2106261 in the ZFHX3 gene with atrial fibrillation in a Chinese Han GeneID population 
Human genetics  2010;129(3):239-246.
Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common cardiac rhythm disorder at the clinical setting and accounts for up to 15% of all strokes. Recent genome-wide association studies (GWAS) identified two single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), rs2106261 and rs7193343 in ZFHX3 (zinc finger homeobox 3 gene) and rs13376333 in KCNN3 (encoding a potassium intermediate/small conductance calcium-activated channel, subfamily N, member 3) that showed significant association with AF in multiple populations of European ancestry. Here, we studied a Chinese Han, GeneID cohort consisting of 650 AF patients and 1,447 non-AF controls to test whether the GWAS findings on ZFHX3/KCNN3 and AF can be expanded to a different ethnic population. No significant association was detected for rs7193343 in ZFHX3 and rs13376333 in KCNN3. However, significant association was identified between rs2106261 in ZFHX3 and AF in the GeneID population for both allelic frequencies (P = 0.001 after adjusting for covariates of age, gender, hypertension, coronary artery disease, and diabetes mellitus; OR = 1.32), and genotypic frequencies assuming either an additive or recessive model (OR = 1.29, P = 0.001 and OR = 1.77, P = 0.00018, respectively). When only lone AF cases were analyzed, the association remained significant (OR = 1.50, P = 0.001 for allelic association; OR = 1.45, P = 0.001 for an additive model; OR = 2.24, P = 0.000043 for a recessive model). Our results indicate that rs2106261 in ZFHX3 confers a significant risk of AF in a Chinese Han population. The study expands the association between ZFHX3 and AF to a non-European ancestry population and provides the first evidence of a cross-race susceptibility of the 16q22 AF locus.
PMCID: PMC5069458  PMID: 21107608
14.  Prevalence, Correlates, and Symptom Profiles of Depression among Men with a History of Military Service 
The purpose of this study was to examine the prevalence, correlates, and symptom profiles of depressive disorders in men with a history of military service.
Data was obtained from the 2006 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) survey. Multivariable logistic regressions were used to identify correlates of lifetime and current depression. Regularly occurring symptom profiles were identified via cluster analysis.
Prevalence of lifetime and current depression was similar in men with and without a history of military service. Lifetime diagnosis was positively associated with younger age and negatively associated with black minority status, married or cohabitation, and self-reported good health. Current depression was positively associated with other minority status (non-Hispanic non-black) and negatively associated with older age, some college, being in a relationship, and self-reported good health. A cluster of younger men who experience significant depressive symptoms but may not report depressed mood or anhedonia was identified.
Depression is as prevalent in men with a history of military service as it is in men without a history. Research should examine subpopulations of men with a history of military service in which depression may be more prevalent or burdensome. Younger men with significant depressive symptoms may be missed by standard depression screens and still be at elevated risk for negative outcomes associated with depressive disorders.
PMCID: PMC5064430  PMID: 20652680
Depression; Prevalence; Military Personnel; Veterans
15.  Analysis of the genetic association between IL27 variants and coronary artery disease in a Chinese Han population 
Scientific Reports  2016;6:25782.
Interleukin-27 (IL-27) is an important cytokine in inflammatory diseases, including coronary artery disease (CAD). To explore the precise role of IL-27 in CAD, we investigated the genetic association between IL27 and CAD in the GeneID Chinese Han population. A two-stage case control association analysis was performed for 3075 CAD cases and 2802 controls. Logistic regression analysis was used to adjust the traditional risk factors for CAD. Results showed that a promoter variant, rs153109, tended to be marginally associated with CAD in the discovery population (Padj = 0.028, OR = 1.27, 95%CI: 1.03–1.58). However, this association was not replicated in the validation stage (Padj = 0.559, OR = 1.04, 95%CI: 0.90–1.21). In addition, when we classified the combined population into two subgroups according to the age at disease onset or disease state, we again obtained no significant associations. Finally, we estimated the severity of coronary stenosis using the Gensini Scoring system and determined that the rs153109 genotypes were still not associated with the Gensini scores of the CAD patients. In conclusion, our study failed to find an association between common variants in the functional region of IL27 and CAD in a Chinese Han population, which indicated that IL-27 might only be an inflammatory marker during the development of CAD.
PMCID: PMC4865940  PMID: 27174010
16.  Mood-, Anxiety-, and Substance Use Disorders and Suicide Risk in a Military Population Cohort 
There are meager prospective data from nonclinical samples on the link between anxiety disorders and suicide or the extent to which the association varies over time. We examined these issues in a cohort of 309,861 United States Air Force service members, with 227 suicides over follow-up. Mental disorder diagnoses including anxiety, mood, and substance use disorders (SUD) were based on treatment encounters. Risk for suicide associated with anxiety disorders were lower compared to mood disorders and similar to SUD. Moreover, the associations between mood and anxiety disorders with suicide were greatest within a year of treatment presentation.
PMCID: PMC4863230  PMID: 23094649
suicide; mental disorder; risk factor; military; cohort
17.  Suicides and Medically Serious Attempters Are of the Same Population in Chinese Rural Young Adults1 
Journal of affective disorders  2015;176:176-182.
Suicide rates in China are among the highest in the world, although there has been a decreasing trend in the past few years. One practical approach to study the characteristics and risk factors of suicide is to interview the suicide attempters.
It was to compare completed suicides with serious attempters that may shed lights on suicide prevention strategies.
This is a combination of two case control studies for suicide completers and suicide attempters respectively. After a sample of suicides (n=392) and community living controls (n=416) were obtained and studied in rural China, we collected in the same rural areas data of suicide attempt and studied 507 medically serious attempters and 503 community counterparts.
Characteristics and previously observed risk factors were compared between the suicides and the attempters, and we found that the demographic characteristics and risk factors for the suicides were also for the medically serious attempters but at some lesser degrees for the attempters than for the suicides. It was especially true of suicide intent, deficient coping, negative life events, and impulsivity. While most of the demographic characteristics were not significantly different between the suicides and the attempters, most of the clinical variables could distinguish the two groups.
The suicide victims and the serious attempters could be of the same group of people who were at the edge of fatal self-injury, and the same clinical risk factors but of different degrees have divided them into the life and death groups.
PMCID: PMC4359633  PMID: 25723561
Suicide; Suicide attempt; China; Rural; Young Adults; Risk factors
18.  The effects of aspirin on platelet function and lysophosphatidic acids depend on plasma concentrations of EPA and DHA 
Aspirin’s prevention of cardiovascular disease (CVD) events in individuals with type 2 diabetes mellitus is controversial. Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and aspirin all affect the cyclooxygenase enzyme. The relationship between plasma EPA and DHA and aspirin’s effects has not been determined. Thirty adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus ingested aspirin (81 mg/day) for 7 days, then EPA+DHA (2.6 g/day) for 28 days, then both for another 7 days. Lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) species and more classic platelet function outcomes were determined. Plasma concentrations of total EPA+DHA were associated with 7-day aspirin reduction effects on these outcomes in a “V”-shaped manner for all 11 LPA species and ADP-induced platelet aggregation. This EPA+DHA concentration was quite consistent for each of the LPA species and ADP. These results support aspirin effects on lysolipid metabolism and platelet aggregation depending on plasma EPA+DHA concentrations in individuals with a disturbed lipid milieu.
PMCID: PMC4395522  PMID: 25555354
Lysophosphatidylcholine; lysophosphatidic acid; omega-3 fatty acids; eicosapentaenoic acid; docosahexaenoic acid; aspirin; platelet function
19.  Correlation and agreement: overview and clarification of competing concepts and measures 
Shanghai Archives of Psychiatry  null;28(2):115-120.
Summary: Agreement and correlation are widely-used concepts that assess the association between variables. Although similar and related, they represent completely different notions of association. Assessing agreement between variables assumes that the variables measure the same construct, while correlation of variables can be assessed for variables that measure completely different constructs. This conceptual difference requires the use of different statistical methods, and when assessing agreement or correlation, the statistical method may vary depending on the distribution of the data and the interest of the investigator. For example, the Pearson correlation, a popular measure of correlation between continuous variables, is only informative when applied to variables that have linear relationships; it may be non-informative or even misleading when applied to variables that are not linearly related. Likewise, the intraclass correlation, a popular measure of agreement between continuous variables, may not provide sufficient information for investigators if the nature of poor agreement is of interest. This report reviews the concepts of agreement and correlation and discusses differences in the application of several commonly used measures.
PMCID: PMC5004097  PMID: 27605869
concordance correlation; intraclass correlation; Kendall's tau; non-linear association; Pearson's correlation; Spearman's rho
20.  Personality and Perceived Health in Spousal Caregivers of Patients with Lung Cancer: The Roles of Neuroticism and Extraversion 
Journal of Aging Research  2016;2016:5659793.
Purpose. Family members' responsibilities for patients with cancer have increased dramatically over the past decade and will likely continue to rise. Given that caregiving is associated with declines in self-care, there is a need for research on caregivers' perceptions of their own health. The purpose of this study was to examine whether personality is associated with four self-report perceived health items from the SF-36. Methods. The sample consisted of 114 spouses of lung cancer patients who completed cross-sectional measures as part of a larger cohort study on adjustment to the diagnosis and treatment of lung cancer. Predictors of interest were Neuroticism and Extraversion scores from the NEO-FFI. Covariates were age, gender, conscientiousness, depressive symptoms, and objective illness burden. Results. Multivariate analyses revealed that caregivers with higher Extraversion scores were less likely to respond affirmatively to the item “I expect my health to get worse” (OR = 0.90, p < 0.05). Neuroticism was associated with poorer perceived health (ORs from 1.11 to 1.12, p's < 0.05). Conclusions. The present cross-sectional findings suggest that personality is associated with responses to SF-36 perceived health items beyond what can be accounted for by objective illness burden and other covariates. The potential overestimation of health among extraverted caregivers may have implications for their health outcomes.
PMCID: PMC4838796  PMID: 27144023
21.  Relationships among three popular measures of differential risks: relative risk, risk difference, and odds ratio 
The relative risk, risk difference, and odds ratio are the three most commonly used measures for comparing the risk of disease between different groups. Although widely popular in biomedical and psychosocial research, the relationship among the three measures has not been clarified in the literature. Many researchers incorrectly assume a monotonic relationship, such that higher (or lower) values in one measure are associated with higher (or lower) values in the other measures. In this paper we discuss three theorems and provide examples demonstrating that this is not the case; there is no logical relationship between any of these measures. Researchers must be very cautious when implying a relationship between the different measures or when combining results of studies that use different measures of risk.
PMCID: PMC4984606  PMID: 27688647
odds ratio; relative risk; risk difference
22.  Post-transcriptional regulation of cardiac sodium channel gene SCN5A expression and function by miR-192-5p 
Biochimica et biophysica acta  2015;1852(10 0 0):2024-2034.
The SCN5A gene encodes cardiac sodium channel Nav1.5 and causes lethal ventricular arrhythmias/sudden death and atrial fibrillation (AF) when mutated. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are important post-transcriptional regulators of gene expression, and involved in the pathogenesis of many diseases. However, little is known about the regulation of SCN5A by miRNAs. Here we reveal a novel post-transcriptional regulatory mechanism for expression and function of SCN5A/Nav1.5 via miR-192-5p. Bioinformatic analysis revealed that the 3′-UTR of human and rhesus SCN5A, but not elephant, pig, rabbit, mouse, and rat SCN5A, contained a target binding site for miR-192-5p and dual luciferase reporter assays showed that the site was critical for down-regulation of human SCN5A. With Western blot assays and electrophysiological studies, we demonstrated that miR-192-5p significantly reduced expression of SCN5A and Nav1.5 as well as peak sodium current density INa generated by Nav1.5. Notably, in situ hybridization, immunohistochemistry and real-time qPCR analyses showed that miR-192-5p was up-regulated in tissue samples from AF patients, which was associated with down-regulation of SCN5A/Nav1.5. These results demonstrate an important post-transcriptional role of miR-192-5p in post-transcriptional regulation of Nav1.5, reveal a novel role of miR-192-5p in cardiac physiology and disease, and provide a new target for novel miRNA-based antiarrhythmic therapy for diseases with reduced INa.
PMCID: PMC4757900  PMID: 26209011
Atrial fibrillation; Cardiac sodium channel Nav1.5; SCN5A; MicroRNA; MiR-192-5p
23.  Regulation of SCN3B/scn3b by Interleukin 2 (IL-2): IL-2 modulates SCN3B/scn3b transcript expression and increases sodium current in myocardial cells 
In the initiation and maintenance of arrhythmia, inflammatory processes play an important role. IL-2 is a pro-inflammatory factor which is associated with the morbidity of arrhythmias, however, how IL-2 affects the cardiac electrophysiology is still unknown.
In the present study, we observed the effect of IL-2 by qRT-PCR on the transcription of ion channel genes including SCN2A, SCN3A, SCN4A, SCN5A, SCN9A, SCN10A, SCN1B, SCN2B, SCN3B, KCNN1, KCNJ5, KCNE1, KCNE2, KCNE3, KCND3, KCNQ1, KCNA5, KCNH2 and CACNA1C. Western blot assays and electrophysiological studies were performed to demonstrate the effect of IL-2 on the translation of SCN3B/scn3b and sodium currents.
The results showed that transcriptional level of SCN3B was up-regulated significantly in Hela cells (3.28-fold, p = 0.022 compared with the control group). Consistent results were verified in HL-1 cells (3.73-fold, p = 0.012 compared with the control group). The result of electrophysiological studies showed that sodium current density increased significantly in cells which treated by IL-2 and the effect of IL-2 on sodium currents was independent of SCN3B (1.4 folds, p = 0.023). Western blot analysis showed IL-2 lead to the significantly increasing of p53 and scn3b (2.1 folds, p = 0.021 for p53; 3.1 folds, p = 0.023 for scn3b) in HL-1 cells. Consistent results were showed in HEK293 cells using qRT-PCR analysis (1.43 folds for P53, p = 0.022; 1.57 folds for SCN3B, p = 0.05).
The present study suggested that IL-2, may play role in the arrhythmia by regulating the expression of SCN3B and sodium current density.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12872-015-0179-x) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
PMCID: PMC4700781  PMID: 26728597
Interleukin-2; SCN3B; Sodium current density; p53
24.  Observational Measures of Implementer Fidelity for a School-based Preventive Intervention: Development, Reliability and Validity 
Current measures of implementer fidelity often fail to adequately measure core constructs of adherence and competence, and their relationship to outcomes can be mixed. To address these limitations, we used observational methods to assess these constructs and their relationships to proximal outcomes in a randomized trial of a school-based preventive intervention (Rochester Resilience Project) designed to strengthen emotion self-regulation skills in 1st–3rd graders with elevated aggressive-disruptive behaviors. Within the intervention group (n = 203), a subsample (n = 76) of students was selected to reflect the overall sample. Implementers were 10 paraprofessionals. Videotaped observations of three lessons from Year 1 of the intervention (14 lessons) were coded for each implementer-child dyad on Adherence (content) and Competence (quality). Using multi-level modeling we examined how much of the variance in the fidelity measures was attributed to implementer and to the child within implementer. Both measures had large and significant variance accounted for by implementer (Competence, 68%; Adherence, 41%); child within implementer did not account for significant variance indicating that ratings reflected stable qualities of the implementer rather than the child. Raw Adherence and Competence scores shared 46% of variance (r = .68). Controlling for baseline differences and age, the amount (Adherence) and quality (Competence) of program delivered predicted children’s enhanced response to the intervention on both child and parent reports after six months, but not on teacher report of externalizing behavior. Our findings support the use of multiple observations for measuring fidelity and that adherence and competence are important components of fidelity which could be assessed by many programs using these methods.
PMCID: PMC4199927  PMID: 24736951
implementer fidelity; measurement; adherence; competence; observation
25.  Adapting Interpersonal Psychotherapy for Older Adults at Risk for Suicide 
To pilot a psychological intervention adapted for older adults at-risk for suicide.
A focused, uncontrolled, pre-to-post-treatment psychotherapy trial. All eligible participants were offered the study intervention.
Outpatient mental healthcare provided in the psychiatry department of an academic medical center in a mid-sized Canadian city.
Seventeen English-speaking adults 60 years or older, at- risk for suicide by virtue of current suicide ideation, death ideation, and/or recent self-injury.
A 16-session course of Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT) adapted for older adults at-risk for suicide who were receiving medication and/or other standard psychiatric treatment for underlying mood disorders.
Participants completed a demographics form, screens for cognitive impairment and alcohol misuse, a semi-structured diagnostic interview, and measures of primary (suicide ideation and death ideation), and secondary study outcomes (depressive symptom severity; social adjustment and support; psychological well-being), and psychotherapy process measures.
Participants experienced significant reductions in suicide ideation, death ideation, and depressive symptom severity, and significant improvement in perceived meaning in life, social adjustment, perceived social support, and other psychological well-being variables.
Study participants experienced enhanced psychological well-being and reduced symptoms of depression and suicide ideation over the course of IPT adapted for older adults at-risk for suicide. Larger, controlled trials are needed to further evaluate the impact of this novel intervention and to test methods for translating and integrating focused interventions into standard clinical care with at-risk older adults.
PMCID: PMC4211998  PMID: 24840611
Suicide; suicide ideation; psychotherapy; treatment; Interpersonal Psychotherapy; IPT; psychological well-being; meaning in life

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