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Ann Lab Med ; 42(1): 24-35, 2022 Jan 01.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34374346

Background: Laboratory parameter abnormalities are commonly observed in COVID-19 patients; however, their clinical significance remains controversial. We assessed the prevalence, characteristics, and clinical impact of laboratory parameters in COVID-19 patients hospitalized in Daegu, Korea. Methods: We investigated the clinical and laboratory parameters of 1,952 COVID-19 patients on admission in nine hospitals in Daegu, Korea. The average patient age was 58.1 years, and 700 (35.9%) patients were men. The patients were classified into mild (N=1,612), moderate (N=294), and severe (N=46) disease groups based on clinical severity scores. We used chi-square test, multiple comparison analysis, and multinomial logistic regression to evaluate the correlation between laboratory parameters and disease severity. Results: Laboratory parameters on admission in the three disease groups were significantly different in terms of hematologic (Hb, Hct, white blood cell count, lymphocyte%, and platelet count), coagulation (prothrombin time and activated partial thromboplastin time), biochemical (albumin, aspartate aminotransferase, alanine aminotransferase, lactate, blood urea nitrogen, creatinine, and electrolytes), inflammatory (C-reactive protein and procalcitonin), cardiac (creatinine kinase MB isoenzyme and troponin I), and molecular virologic (Ct value of SARS-CoV-2 RdRP gene) parameters. Relative lymphopenia, prothrombin time prolongation, and hypoalbuminemia were significant indicators of COVID-19 severity. Patients with both hypoalbuminemia and lymphopenia had a higher risk of severe COVID-19. Conclusions: Laboratory parameter abnormalities on admission are common, are significantly associated with clinical severity, and can serve as independent predictors of COVID-19 severity. Monitoring the laboratory parameters, including albumin and lymphocyte count, is crucial for timely treatment of COVID-19.

COVID-19 , Data Analysis , Humans , Laboratories , Male , Middle Aged , Republic of Korea/epidemiology , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
Talanta ; 236: 122843, 2022 Jan 01.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34635233

In our study, matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF/MS) is proposed as a novel tool, which can be applied to analyze lipids in urine samples. For this reason, the main aim of the study was to develop and optimize the preparation protocol for urine samples in lipidomics, using urine samples obtained from patients with diagnosed cancer and non-cancer controls. Several conditions like extraction method and types of matrices were evaluated. For this purpose, two methods for the extraction of lipids, namely modified Folch and Bligh & Dyer were employed. Furthermore, two types of matrices (α-cyano-4-hydroxycinnamic acid (HCCA) and 2,5-dihydroxybenzoic acid (DHB)) for the separation of lipids into individual components was tested. The results of this study can serve as an essential source for the selection of appropriate extraction methods and the appropriate choice of a matrix for the purification and identification of a particular class of lipid in human biological fluids. Based on it, Bligh & Dyer method associated with the usage of HCCA matrix was found to be the most effective for lipidomics using MALDI-TOF/MS. The optimized method was applied to compare the lipid profile of 139 urine samples collected from both healthy individuals and patients with prostate cancer. The tandem spectroscopic analysis allowed to identify lysophosphatidylcholine, phosphatidylcholine, phosphatidylethanolamine, phosphatidylinositol, and triacylglycerols in urine samples. Finally, MALDI-TOF/MS analysis enabled to discriminate between the two tested groups (healthy individuals and patients with prostate cancer). A preliminary statistical model suggested that classification accuracy ranging from 83.3 to100.0% may be achieved by using pre-selected MS signals.

Phosphatidylcholines , Prostatic Neoplasms , Humans , Male , Prostatic Neoplasms/diagnosis , Spectrometry, Mass, Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption-Ionization , Triglycerides
Gene ; 806: 145935, 2022 Jan 05.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34478821

Soluble molecules of programmed death ligand 1 (sPD-L1) are known to modulate T-cell depletion, an important mechanism of hepatitis B virus (HBV) persistence and liver disease progression. In addition, PD-L1 polymorphisms in the 3'-UTR can influence PD-L1 expression and have been associated with cancer risk, although not definitively. The purpose of this study was to investigate the association of PD-L1 polymorphisms and circulating levels of sPD-L1 in HBV infection and live disease progression. In this study, five hundred fifty-one HBV infected patients of the three clinically well-defined subgroups chronic hepatitis B (CHB, n = 186), liver cirrhosis (LC, n = 142) and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC, n = 223) and 240 healthy individuals (HC) were enrolled. PD-L1 polymorphisms (rs2297136 and rs4143815) were genotyped by in-house validated ARMS assays. Logistic regression models were applied in order to determine the association of PD-L1 polymorphisms with HBV infection as well as with progression of related liver diseases. Plasma sPD-L1 levels were quantified by ELISA assays. The PD-L1 rs2297136 AA genotype was associated with HBV infection susceptibility (HBV vs. HC: OR = 1.6; 95%CI = 1.1-2.3; p = 0.0087) and disease progression (LC vs. CHB: OR = 1.8; 95%CI = 1.1-2.9; p = 0.018). Whereas, the rs2297136 GG genotype was a protective factor for HCC development. Plasma sPD-L1 levels were significantly high in HBV patients (p < 0.0001) and higher in the LC followed by CHB and HCC groups. High sPD-L1 levels correlated with increased liver enzymes and with advanced liver disease progression (Child-pugh C > B > A, p < 0.0001) and BCLC classification (BCLC D > C > B > A, p = 0.031). We could, for the first time, conclude that PD-L1 rs2297136 polymorphism and plasma sPD-L1 protein levels associate with HBV infection and HBV-related liver disease progression.

B7-H1 Antigen/genetics , Carcinoma, Hepatocellular/genetics , Hepatitis B virus/pathogenicity , Hepatitis B, Chronic/genetics , Liver Cirrhosis/genetics , Liver Neoplasms/genetics , Polymorphism, Genetic , 3' Untranslated Regions , Adult , Aged , B7-H1 Antigen/blood , Biomarkers/blood , Carcinoma, Hepatocellular/diagnosis , Carcinoma, Hepatocellular/etiology , Carcinoma, Hepatocellular/virology , Case-Control Studies , Disease Progression , Female , Gene Expression , Genetic Predisposition to Disease , Hepatitis B virus/growth & development , Hepatitis B, Chronic/complications , Hepatitis B, Chronic/diagnosis , Hepatitis B, Chronic/virology , Humans , Liver/metabolism , Liver/pathology , Liver/virology , Liver Cirrhosis/diagnosis , Liver Cirrhosis/etiology , Liver Cirrhosis/virology , Liver Neoplasms/diagnosis , Liver Neoplasms/etiology , Liver Neoplasms/virology , Male , Middle Aged , Predictive Value of Tests
Addict Behav ; 124: 107087, 2022 01.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34464915

BACKGROUND: Marijuana is the most frequently used illicit drug among college students, and there is a need to understand the social processes that contribute to young adults' marijuana use. Substance use behaviors tend to be more similar (homophilous) among individuals with social ties to one another. However, little is known about whether marijuana use homophily within young adult relationships is due to social selection (seeking out ties with similar marijuana use to one's own) or social influence (adopting similar marijuana use behaviors as one's ties), or both. METHODS: Students (N = 1,489; 54.6% female; Mage = 18.6 years) at one University completed online surveys in their first three semesters of college. Surveys assessed participant characteristics, marijuana use, and ties to up to 10 other students in the whole (sociocentric) network of first-year college students. Stochastic-actor oriented models (SAOMs) were used to analyze the co-evolution of marijuana use and social ties over time. RESULTS: Participants were more likely to select peers with similar past 30-day marijuana use as themselves. Concurrently, students' past 30-day marijuana use became more similar to their peers' use over time. DISCUSSION: Evidence for selection and influence effects were highly significant after controlling for network structure and other covariates indicating these processes may work in tandem to increase marijuana use homophily over the first year of college. This highlights the importance of relationships made early in the first-year of college, as these initial peer ties are likely to reinforce marijuana use behaviors that occur within these relationships.

Marijuana Smoking , Marijuana Use , Substance-Related Disorders , Adolescent , Female , Humans , Male , Marijuana Smoking/epidemiology , Marijuana Use/epidemiology , Peer Group , Students , Universities , Young Adult
Addict Behav ; 124: 107095, 2022 01.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34479068

Online social networking is an intrinsic part of present life. However, if individuals believe that some basic psychological needs can only be fulfilled through social networking sites, an addictive pattern of usage may emerge. Problematic social media use (PSMU) is a growing concern in adolescence. The present study aimed at contributing to prior scientific literature by testing a model that considers low emotional intelligence (EI) as a vulnerability factor, perceived stress and depressive symptoms as affective and cognitive responses to conflicting situations, and PSMU as a maladaptive coping mechanism. In this study, 2068 Spanish adolescents (46.2% male, 53.8% female) within the ages of 12 and 19 (M = 14.61, SD = 1.62) completed self-report measures of the above-mentioned constructs. Results indicated that (a) perceived stress was a significant mediator in the association between EI and PSMU, (b) depressive symptoms were a significant mediator in this link, and (c) a significant serial mediation model was supported, in which lower EI predicted higher perceived stress, which contributed to higher levels of depressive symptoms, thus resulting in higher PSMU. These results provide important empirical evidence suggesting promising pathways towards preventing PSMU in adolescents, such as EI training, teaching stress-reduction techniques and focusing on reducing depressive symptoms.

Social Media , Adolescent , Depression , Emotional Intelligence , Female , Humans , Male , Social Networking , Stress, Psychological
Addict Behav ; 124: 107074, 2022 01.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34509787

BACKGROUND: This pilot study aimed to test the feasibility of providing varenicline in combination with nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) and motivational interviewing (MI) to adult male smokers attending a clinic in a hostel for homeless people. METHODS: A single group pre- and post-treatment (12 weeks following intervention commencement) design with embedded process evaluation (at weekly counselling and fortnightly safety check-ins). Participants were 20 male smokers attending a health clinic within a homelessness service in Sydney, Australia, between December 2019 and March 2020. Participants set a target quit date 7-days post intervention commencement. Adverse events, self-reported abstinence, cigarettes per day, treatment adherence and acceptability of the study interventions were assessed 12 weeks post intervention commencement. Abstinence was biochemically verified. Results are complete cases. RESULTS: Retention was 65% at 12-weeks post-intervention commencement (n = 13). No related adverse events were reported. Three participants (15%) reported continuous abstinence. Two participants self-reported 30-day point prevalence abstinence (10%), confirmed by CO level. Participants who did not quit smoking (n = 10), reported a significant reduction in the number of cigarettes smoked per day (19.4 vs 4.7, p < .01). Cravings, withdrawal symptoms, and psychological distress significantly decreased from baseline to 12-week follow-up (all < 0.01). Adherence to the pharmacological interventions was good, most used combination NRT and varenicline. Adherence to the counselling sessions was low, attending three of 12 sessions. Both NRT and MI were rated as highly acceptable. Some participants expressed concerns about the safety of varenicline. CONCLUSIONS: The intervention was feasible and acceptable and associated with short-term smoking cessation and significant reductions in the number of cigarettes smoked-per-day.

Homeless Persons , Motivational Interviewing , Smoking Cessation , Adult , Feasibility Studies , Humans , Male , Pilot Projects , Smoking , Tobacco Use Cessation Devices , Varenicline/therapeutic use
Gene ; 807: 145951, 2022 Jan 10.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34500051

AIMS: The purpose of the present study was to analyze the role of selected polymorphisms of SIRT3 and SIRT5 in gastric carcinogenesis. METHODS: For this study, 500 blood samples of GC patients and 500 blood samples of healthy individuals were collected. Six selected polymorphisms of mitochondrial sirtuins were analyzed for analysis using Tetra-Arms PCR followed by DNA sequencing. RESULTS: Mutant allele frequencies of selected polymorphisms [rs3782116 (p < 0.0001), rs6598072 (p < 0.0001) and rs11246020 (p < 0.0001), rs938222 (p = 0.0136), rs3757261 (p = 0.0005) and rs2841511 (p = 0.0015)] were observed significant higher in GC patients vs controls. Haplotype analysis was performed, and 51 haplotypes were generated using haploview software. Among these haplotypes, eleven haplotypes were found associated with a significantly increased risk of GC. Furthermore, SNP-SNP interaction showed a significant correlation between studied SNPs and GC risk. Kaplan Meier analysis showed that mutant allele frequencies of selected polymorphisms are linked with a significant decrease in survival of GC patients CONCLUSIONS: It can be concluded that selected SNPs may be associated with enhanced risk of GC and hence can be potential prognostic markers for prognosis and predisposition of GC.

Sirtuin 3/genetics , Sirtuins/genetics , Stomach Neoplasms/genetics , Alleles , Asian Continental Ancestry Group/genetics , Case-Control Studies , China/epidemiology , Female , Gene Frequency/genetics , Genetic Predisposition to Disease/genetics , Genetic Variation/genetics , Genotype , Haplotypes , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Mitochondria/genetics , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide/genetics , Prognosis , Retrospective Studies , Risk Factors , Sirtuin 3/blood , Sirtuin 3/metabolism , Sirtuins/blood , Sirtuins/metabolism
Gene ; 806: 145921, 2022 Jan 05.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34454033

Maoto, a traditional Japanese medicine (Kampo), is widely used to treat upper respiratory tract infections, including influenza virus infection. Although maoto is known to inhibit pro-inflammatory responses in a rodent model of acute inflammation, its underlying mechanism remains to be determined. In this study, we investigated the involvement of immune responses and noradrenergic function in the inhibitory action of maoto. In a mouse model of polyI:C-induced acute inflammation, maoto was administered orally in conjunction with intraperitoneal injection of PolyI:C (6 mg/kg), and blood was collected after 2 h for measurement of plasma cytokines by ELISA. Maoto significantly decreased PolyI:C-induced TNF-α levels and increased IL-10 production. Neither pretreatment with IL-10 neutralizing antibodies nor T-cell deficiency using nude mice modified the inhibitory effect of maoto, indicating that the anti-inflammatory effects of maoto are independent of IL-10 and T cells. Furthermore, the inhibitory effects of maoto on PolyI:C-induced TNF-α production were not observed in ex vivo splenocytes, suggesting that maoto does not act directly on inflammatory cells. Lastly, pretreatment with a ß-adrenergic receptor antagonist partially cancelled the anti-inflammatory effects of maoto. Collectively, these results suggest that maoto mediates its anti-inflammatory effects via ß-adrenergic receptors in vivo.

Adrenergic beta-Antagonists/pharmacology , Anti-Inflammatory Agents/pharmacology , Inflammation/prevention & control , Interleukin-10/genetics , Plant Extracts/pharmacology , Receptors, Adrenergic, beta/genetics , Administration, Oral , Animals , Disease Models, Animal , Ephedrine/pharmacology , Gene Expression Regulation , Injections, Intraperitoneal , Interleukin-10/agonists , Interleukin-10/immunology , Japan , Male , Medicine, Kampo/methods , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Mice, Nude , Poly I-C/administration & dosage , Poly I-C/antagonists & inhibitors , Receptors, Adrenergic, beta/immunology , Signal Transduction , T-Lymphocytes/drug effects , T-Lymphocytes/immunology , T-Lymphocytes/pathology , Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha/antagonists & inhibitors , Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha/genetics , Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha/immunology
Gene ; 806: 145922, 2022 Jan 05.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34454032

Gastric cancer (GC)-derived cell lines were generally used in basic cancer research and drug screening. However, it is always concerned about the difference between cultured cells and primary tumor by oncologists. To address this question, we compared differentially expressed genes (DEGs) in primary cancers, healthy tissues, and cell lines both in vitro and in silico. Seven reported genes with decreased expression in GCs by DNA methylation were analyzed in our cohort studies and experimentally validation. Selected datasets from TCGA (The Cancer Genome Atlas), CCLE (The Broad Institute Cancer Cell Line Encyclopedia), and GTEx (The Genotype-Tissue Expression project) were used to represent GCs, GC-derived cell lines, and healthy tissues respectively in the in silico analysis. Thirty gastric tissues together with six cell lines were used for validations. Unexpectedly, we experimentally found that reported cancer-related downregulated genes were only found in cancer cell lines but not in biopsies. The unchanged gene expressions in primary GCs were generally consistent with our cohort study, using information from cancerous (TCGA) and healthy tissues (GETx). Substantial differences were also found between DEGs of cancer tissues (TGCA)/ healthy tissues (GTEx) pair and cell lines (CCLE)/ healthy tissues (GTEx) pair, which confirmed the significant differences between primary cancer and cancer cell lines. Moreover, elevated expression of YWHAQ (14-3-3 δ) and THBS1 were observed in the GC biopsies, which might be potential biomarkers for GC diagnosis, considering the increased YWHAQ and THBS1 associated with poor survival rates in gastric cancer patients. In sum, it is suggested that cautions should be taken when using GC cell lines to study genes that show great differences between cell lines and tissues.

14-3-3 Proteins/genetics , Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic , Neoplasm Proteins/genetics , Stomach Neoplasms/genetics , Thrombospondins/genetics , 14-3-3 Proteins/metabolism , Aged , Atlases as Topic , Biomarkers, Tumor/genetics , Biomarkers, Tumor/metabolism , Cell Line, Tumor , DNA Methylation , Datasets as Topic , Epigenesis, Genetic , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Models, Biological , Neoplasm Proteins/metabolism , Primary Cell Culture , Prognosis , Stomach Neoplasms/diagnosis , Stomach Neoplasms/mortality , Stomach Neoplasms/pathology , Survival Analysis , Thrombospondins/metabolism , Tumor Cells, Cultured
Gene ; 806: 145920, 2022 Jan 05.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34455026

Depression is deemed a mood disorder characterized by a high rate of relapse. Therefore, overcoming of the recurrent depression is globally expecting. Kososan, a traditional Japanese herbal medicine, has been clinically used for mild depressive mood, and our previous studies have shown some evidence for its antidepressive-like efficacy in experimental animal models of depression. However, it remains unclear whether kososan has beneficial effects on recurrent depression. Here, we examined its effect using a mouse model of modified repeated social defeat stress (SDS) paradigm. Male BALB/c mice were exposed to a 5-min SDS from unfamiliar aggressive CD-1 mice for 5 days. Kososan extract (1.0 kg/kg/day) or an antidepressant milnacipran (60 mg/kg/day) was administered orally for 26 days (days 7-32) to depression-like mice with social avoidant behaviors on day 6. Single 5 min of SDS was subjected to mice recovered from the social avoidance on day 31, and then the recurrence of depression-like behaviors was evaluated on day 32. Hippocampal gene expression patterns were also assayed by DNA microarray analysis. Water- or milnacipran-administered mice resulted in a recurrence of depression-like behaviors by re-exposure of single SDS, whereas kososan-administered mice did not recur depression-like behaviors. Distinct gene expression patterns were also found for treating kososan and milnacipran. Collectively, this finding suggests that kososan exerts a preventive effect on recurrent depression-like behaviors in mice. Pretreatment of kososan is more useful for recurrent depression than that of milnacipran.

Antidepressive Agents/pharmacology , Depression/prevention & control , Drugs, Chinese Herbal/pharmacology , Nerve Tissue Proteins/genetics , Social Defeat , Stress, Psychological/drug therapy , Administration, Oral , Animals , Depression/genetics , Depression/physiopathology , Depression/psychology , Disease Models, Animal , Gene Expression Profiling , Gene Expression Regulation , Gene Ontology , Hippocampus/drug effects , Hippocampus/metabolism , Hippocampus/physiopathology , Japan , Male , Medicine, Kampo/methods , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Milnacipran/pharmacology , Molecular Sequence Annotation , Nerve Tissue Proteins/classification , Nerve Tissue Proteins/metabolism , Oligonucleotide Array Sequence Analysis , Recurrence , Stress, Psychological/genetics , Stress, Psychological/physiopathology
Med Gas Res ; 12(2): 44-50, 2022.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34677151

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has caused an urgent need for investigating potential treatments. Traditional medicine offers many potential remedies that have been historically used and have the advantage of bypassing the cultural obstacles in the practice of medicine. We aimed to investigate the efficacy of Zufa syrup in the treatment of suspected patients with mild to moderate symptoms of COVID-19. This triple-blind randomized controlled trial recruited patients with evidence of COVID-19 on chest computed tomography without an indication of hospital admission from March 2020 until April 2020. Participants were assessed by a physician and completed a pre-specified form to assess the duration and severity of symptoms. Patients were randomized to receive Zufa syrup (a combination of herbal medicines: Nepetabracteata, Ziziphus jujube, Glycyrrhizaglabra, Ficuscarica, Cordia myxa, Papaver somniferum, Fennel, Adiantumcapillus-veneris, Viola, Viper's-buglosses, Lavender, Iris, and sugar) or identical-looking placebo syrup at a dose of 7.5 mL (one tablespoon) every 4 hours for 10 days. After applying the eligibility criteria, 116 patients (49.1% male) were randomized to trial arms with a mean age of 44.3. During the follow-up, Cough, dyspnea, headache, myalgia, anorexia, anxiety, and insomnia improved gradually in both groups, and showed no difference between Zufa syrup and placebo. Oxygen saturation and pulse rate had stable trends throughout the follow-up and were similar between study arms. No patient required hospital admission or supplemental oxygen therapy during the study period. To conclude, in patients with mild to moderate symptoms of COVID-19, Zufa syrup did not show any difference in symptomatology over a 10 days' period when compared with placebo. Due to potential effects of medicinal plants in the treatment of respiratory infections, further studies are warranted to clarify their role in COVID-19. The study was approved by the Ethics Committee of the Qom University of Medical Science (Ethics committee reference number IR.MUQ.REC.1398.165) on March 10, 2020 and was registered in Iranian Clinical Trial Center (approval ID: IRCT20200404046934N1) on April 13, 2020.

COVID-19 , Female , Humans , Iran/epidemiology , Male , Oxygen , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2
Int Braz J Urol ; 48(1): 101-109, 2022.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34735086

INTRODUCTION: It has been more than a year since the first case of Covid-19 was diagnosed in Brazil, and its most problematic feature is the oversaturation of the healthcare system capacity. Urolithiasis is a disease that requires timely and appropriate management. The present study aimed to evaluate the impact of the pandemic in hospital admissions for urolithiasis in the Brazilian public healthcare system. MATERIALS AND METHODS: In this cross-sectional study, hospital admissions were obtained from the Brazilian Public Health Information system. All hospital admissions associated with urolithiasis diagnosis (ICD-10 N20) between March 2017 and February 2021 were analyzed. RESULTS: During the COVID-19 outbreak, there was a significant decrease in hospital admissions (p<0.0001). More than 20.000 patients probably did not have the opportunity to undergo their surgeries. The impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on women's admissions was significantly more intense than for men, reducing from 48.91% to 48.36% of the total (p=0.0281). The extremes of age seemed to be more affected, with patients younger than 20 years and older than 60 years having a significant reduction in access to hospital services (p=0.033). CONCLUSIONS: In conclusion, we have noticed a considerable reduction in overall admissions for the treatment of urolithiasis in the Brazilian public healthcare system during the first year of the Covid-19 pandemic. Women and individuals older than 60 years were especially affected. In contrast, we noted a rise in urgent procedures, comparing with the average of the corresponding period of the three previous years. Recovery plans will be needed while returning to activities to handle the impounded surgical volume.

COVID-19 , Urolithiasis , Adult , Brazil/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Humans , Male , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Urolithiasis/epidemiology , Young Adult
Appl Ergon ; 98: 103572, 2022 Jan.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34474315

Many anti-vibration gloves are available in the market but there are lacks of understanding of their effectiveness in facilitating various hand movements. This study addresses the knowledge gap through a wear trial with five types of anti-vibration gloves made of chloroprene rubber and spacer fabric. Surface electromyography of three forearm muscles of 16 male subjects was conducted during gripping, key pinching, woodblock transporting, screw inserting and screw driving tasks. The correlation between the compression properties of the gloves and hand performance was also evaluated. The results show that hand dexterity is inhibited and more muscle activity is needed to carry the woodblocks with the spacer fabric glove without special design features. A thicker glove can reduce the demand of the flexor digitorum superficialis muscle when using an impact driver. A thinner dorsal side and tailored padding can enhance hand dexterity. The findings can be used as a reference for designing anti-vibration gloves.

Forearm , Gloves, Protective , Hand , Humans , Male , Muscle, Skeletal , Vibration
Appl Ergon ; 98: 103579, 2022 Jan.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34507084

Wearable inertial sensors may be used to objectively quantify exposure to some physical risk factors associated with musculoskeletal disorders. However, concerns regarding their potential negative effects on user safety and satisfaction remain. This study characterized the self-reported daily discomfort, distraction, and burden associated with wearing inertial sensors on the upper arms, trunk, and dominant wrist of 31 manufacturing workers collected over 15 full work shifts. Results indicated that the workers considered the devices as generally comfortable to wear, not distracting, and not burdensome to use. Exposure to non-neutral postures (discomfort, right arm, beta = 0.02; trunk, beta = -0.01), non-cyclic tasks (distraction, beta = -0.26), and higher body mass indices (discomfort, beta = 0.05; distraction, beta = 0.02) contributed to statistically significant (p < 0.05), albeit practically small increases in undesirable ratings. For instance, for each additional percentage of time working with the right arm elevated ≥60°, self-reported discomfort ratings increased 0.02 cm on a standard 10 cm visual analog scale. Female workers reported less discomfort and distraction while wearing the sensors at work than males (discomfort, beta = -0.93; distraction, beta = -0.3). In general, the low ratings of discomfort, distraction, and burden associated with wearing the devices during work suggests that inertial sensors may be suitable for extended use among manufacturing workers.

Musculoskeletal Diseases , Wearable Electronic Devices , Female , Humans , Male , Perception , Posture , Torso
Appl Ergon ; 98: 103594, 2022 Jan.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34627068

The automotive future has always pointed to a world of intelligent co-pilots and robot cars, but perhaps no more so than Knight Rider. In this 1980's television series the fictional Knight Industries Two Thousand (KITT) was a supercomputer on wheels with 1000 megabytes of memory. The protagonist was Michael Knight, a young loner on a crusade to champion the cause of the innocent and the helpless. This was a shadowy flight into the trials and tribulations of different levels of automation, re-claiming control when automation failed, and a wilful, chatty computer co-driver. An amusing metaphor, perhaps, for the research impact made by Neville Stanton in the field of vehicle automation. Without question - to paraphrase the Knight Rider outro - "one man can make a difference". This festschrift in Neville's honour tells the story of how.

Automobile Driving , Automation , Automobiles , Emotions , Humans , Male
Appl Ergon ; 98: 103583, 2022 Jan.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34634582

In this paper, we discuss the ways in which Neville Stanton has challenged himself, his research colleagues, PhD students, the many co-authors and contributors to his publications, and the entire Ergonomics community to determine what it means for there to be 'consistent standards for how [Ergonomics] methods are described and reported.' Only in this way, can it be possible to make claims about whether or not a method in Ergonomics is effective. Given that he is Chartered as both an Occupational Psychologist and an Ergonomist, it is not surprising that he has been concerned with the question of the reliability and validity of Ergonomics methods. In Occupational Psychology, psychometric and personnel selection methods are expected to exhibit acceptable levels of reliability, but this is an expectation which is still somewhat alien to Ergonomics. Neville's work has been instrumental in raising this issue and in providing approaches which can be used to critically evaluate the methods we use. We think that, despite his ground-breaking work, there is still much to do in the Ergonomics community to create the situation for which he has long argued.

Ergonomics , Research Design , Humans , Male , Reproducibility of Results
Appl Ergon ; 98: 103601, 2022 Jan.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34634583

This study examined whether a repetitive light assembly task could be performed according to different movement sequences identified as ways of doing (WoD), and whether the age of the participants or the work pace affected the number of WoDs selected by each participant, or the kinematic parameters for each WoDs. For two work paces, 62 right-handed men in 3 age-groups were asked to fix a handle on a base with 2 nuts without discontinuity for a period of 20 min; no assembly procedure was demonstrated. The WoDs were characterized by a cross tabulation video coding method, and by measuring vertical force applied and the parameters of upper limb kinematics, as well as these measures' approximate entropy (ApEN). Five main different WoDs were used. Although most participants varied their WoD, neither participant age nor work pace affected the number of WoD they used. However, the WoDs differed from each other by the sequence of movements and by the level of ApEn of their kinematic variables without interfering with the production rate. Allowing operators to vary their WoDs when performing repetitive tasks could reduce strain on the locomotor system.

Musculoskeletal System , Upper Extremity , Biomechanical Phenomena , Hand , Humans , Male , Movement
Appl Ergon ; 98: 103604, 2022 Jan.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34662750

The aim of this research was to examine how broadband noise which is present in many workplaces affects dynamic decision-making. The effect of potential moderating factors, cognitive workload and sex, were also examined. Forty-eight participants (24 females) with an average age of 27.38 years (SD = 12.34) were asked to complete a dynamic decision-making task over three consecutive-days. Independent variables were Noise (Broadband - 0dBA vs. 75dBA above background) and Cognitive Workload (Low vs. High, manipulated via presence of a secondary task). Among females, broadband noise significantly impaired performance in low workload, but significantly improved performance in high workload. In contrast, among males broadband noise had no significant effect on overall performance. From an applied perspective, understanding the interaction between noise, cognitive workload and sex allows for the design of a training environment to ensure maximum performance by all staff.

Noise , Workload , Adult , Cognition , Female , Humans , Learning , Male
Appl Ergon ; 98: 103586, 2022 Jan.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34560338

OBJECTIVE: To investigate the effects of repeated work bouts in the heat on peak body core temperature and to explore sex-based differences in body core temperature responses. METHODS: Fourteen males and fifteen females performed four work bouts (two heavy and two moderate, alternating) in 32.5 °C Wet Bulb Globe Temperature (WBGT), each separated by 30-min seated rest in 28.0 °C WBGT. Participants wore a military combat uniform with body armour and helmet (10 kg load) during the work bouts, removing the vest and helmet during recovery periods. RESULTS: Body core temperature elevation over time was faster in the first compared with subsequent work bouts of each intensity. Body core temperature elevation was similar between males and females during the first heavy work bout, then remained significantly lower in females for the reminder of the trial. CONCLUSIONS: Contrary to the assumed progressive elevation in strain, but in agreement with recent literature, a gradual reduction in heat storage in subsequent exercise bouts prevented a cumulative increase in heat strain in the conditions tested.

Body Temperature , Heat Stress Disorders , Hot Temperature , Physical Exertion , Sex Factors , Body Temperature Regulation , Female , Heart Rate , Humans , Male
Sci Total Environ ; 802: 149826, 2022 Jan 01.
Article En | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34455281

The aim of the present study was to evaluate the enantioselective bioaccumulation, metabolism, and toxic effects of metolachlor and S-metolachlor in zebrafish. Five-month-old zebrafish were exposed to metolachlor and S-metolachlor for 28 days, then transferred to clean water and purified for 7 days. In the uptake phase, S-metolachlor was preferentially accumulated at low concentrations, while metolachlor was preferentially accumulated at high concentrations. The two chemicals were metabolized by >70% in zebrafish on the first day and showed same metabolic process. At the accumulation endpoint, S-metolachlor had no significant inhibitory effect on the enzymes activities of superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT) and glutathione S-transferase (GST) and developmental indicators of zebrafish. However, 300 µg/L metolachlor significantly inhibited the enzymes activities of SOD, CAT and GST and affected the liver development. The preferential enrichment of metolachlor at the high concentration may be the reason for its higher toxicity to zebrafish. Further research demonstrated that metolachlor significantly altered the expression of hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis-related genes, including gnrh2, gnrh3, lhß, 17ßhsd and cyp19a, thereby reducing the levels of testosterone (T) in females and sex hormones (estradiol and testosterone) in males. S-metolachlor increased the levels of estradiol (E2) in females by altering the expression of HPG axis-related genes such as fshß, cyp17, 17ßhsd and cyp19a. The mechanism of metolachlor and S-metolachlor on the endocrine disrupting effects of zebrafish is different, which may be sex-specific. 7 days after transferring the exposed zebrafish to clean water, most of the enzymes activities, sex hormone levels and related gene expression levels returned to normal, which may be related to the rapid metabolism of the two chemicals.

Water Pollutants, Chemical , Zebrafish , Acetamides , Animals , Bioaccumulation , Female , Male , Stereoisomerism , Water Pollutants, Chemical/toxicity