Now showing items 1-20 of 7574

    • Recovery and Recovering in Older Adults with Schizophrenia: A 5-Tier Model.

      Cohen, Carl I; Reinhardt, Michael M (2020-04-02)
      Rationale: There are little recent data on clinical recovery in older adults with schizophrenia. This exploratory study uses an empirically measurable construct to address this issue. Methods: From an original sample of 248 community-dwelling persons aged 55 and over with early-onset schizophrenia spectrum disorder, a subsample of 102 persons was reassessed at a mean of 52 months. Clinical recovery required meeting criteria for its two components: clinical remission and community integration. Results: Prospective analysis generated a 5-tier taxonomy of recovery in which 12% remained persistently in clinical recovery at both baseline and follow-up (Tier 1) and 18% never met criteria of clinical recovery (Tier 5). The remaining 70% exhibited a variety of components of clinical recovery at baseline and follow-up (Tiers 2, 3, and 4). Conclusion: The findings generated a dynamic picture of recovery, with most persons being in varying states of "recovering." The 5-tier taxonomy of recovery adumbrated potential treatment strategies for each tier. Keywords: Recovery; community integration; elderly; older adults; outcome; remission; schizophrenia.
    • Effects of Mild Traumatic Brain Injury (mTBI) on Retinal Structure, Function, and Pupillary Light Responses

      Toan, Trinh (2023-08-01)
      Purpose: Evaluate the sensitivity and light adaptation characteristics of ipRGC-mediated PLR and how they are altered in the dark and under different backgrounds with direct pupil stimulation in patients with mTBI. Methods: Direct pupillary light reflex (PLR) to blue light (peak λ = 440nm, FWHM = 20nm) was measured from the dominant eye, the other eye was fully occluded, of 12 control adult subjects (ages 42.2 ± 17.0 years) and 12 chronic mTBI patients (ages 35.4 ± 12.8 years) using LiveTrack pupilometer module and an infrared camera (30Hz) inside a LED-driven Ganzfeld system (Espion V6 ColorDome, Diagnosys LLC, Lowell, MA). The study consisted of two protocols: (1) The intensity series included 19 steps of increasing intensity ranging from 0.001 to 198 cd/m2, was completed first in sequence after 5 minutes of initial dark adaptation, and 2 minutes between test flashes. A test blue flash stimulus with a duration of 1 second was used, and the pupil response were recorded for 7.5 seconds. Between each successive step, 2 minutes of dark adaption was allowed. (2) The background intensity series, consisted of 7 steps, ranging from 0 to 10 cd/m2, was completed thereafter with test flash of 120 cd/m2 on top of the background. Pupil diameter measurements were made following 5 minutes of initial dark-adaptation, and first on a dark background with a 120 cd/m2 test flash for a duration of 1 second. The subjects adapted for 2 minutes to each subsequent background intensity. The same bright, blue test flash of 120 cd/m2 was used on top of each background intensity. The 6-second post-illumination pupil response (PIPR) amplitudes were extracted at 6 seconds after stimulus offset, and averaged over a 100ms window (i.e., between 6950ms and 7050ms). The peak or maximal pupil constriction amplitude was measured at the trough from baseline. A stimulus intensity response was plotted for the PIPR and peak percent reduction from baseline across all 19 intensities. The intensity series PIPR and peak data was fitted to the Naka-Rushton equation of the form V(I) = (Vmax * In) / (In + Kn) to derive the saturated amplitude (Vmax), slope (n) and semisaturation constant (K). The values of the fit parameters were compared between control and mTBI groups. For the background series, the baseline pupil diameter, PIPR, and peak parameters were extracted from the 7 steps and compared between controls and mTBI patients. Wilcoxin rank sum test was used to compare the corresponding parameters between mTBI and controls. P values less than 0.05 were considered statistically significant. Results: The PIPR was significantly reduced in mTBI patients relative to controls through both the intensity and background series, indicating a reduction in luminance gain of ipRGCs. In addition, the baseline pupil diameter following 2 or 5-minutes of dark-adaptation and at the end of 2-minutes of light adaptation over a 5-log unit range of background intensities (0.0001-10 cd/m2) was larger (i.e., less constriction) for mTBI patients, suggesting an underlying pathophysiology of the ipRGCs, reaffirming the dysfunction of the luminance gain control. Conclusions: The reduction in the PIPR and the larger baseline pupil responses in patients with mTBI insinuated an underlying pathophysiology that may reflect a dysfunction of ipRGC and its luminance gain control mechanism especially when exposed to long duration light stimuli. Therefore, evaluating the baseline diameter at 2 minutes following light exposure on a series of background intensities may prove to be clinically more useful for identifying retinal abnormalities in mTBI.
    • Large-scale collaboration in ENIGMA-EEG: A perspective on the meta-analytic approach to link neurological and psychiatric liability genes to electrophysiological brain activity.

      Smit, Dirk J A; Andreassen, Ole A; Boomsma, Dorret I; Burwell, Scott J; Chorlian, David B; de Geus, Eco J C; Elvsåshagen, Torbjørn; Gordon, Reyna L; Harper, Jeremy; Hegerl, Ulrich; et al. (2021-07-21)
      Background and purpose: The ENIGMA-EEG working group was established to enable large-scale international collaborations among cohorts that investigate the genetics of brain function measured with electroencephalography (EEG). In this perspective, we will discuss why analyzing the genetics of functional brain activity may be crucial for understanding how neurological and psychiatric liability genes affect the brain. Methods: We summarize how we have performed our currently largest genome-wide association study of oscillatory brain activity in EEG recordings by meta-analyzing the results across five participating cohorts, resulting in the first genome-wide significant hits for oscillatory brain function located in/near genes that were previously associated with psychiatric disorders. We describe how we have tackled methodological issues surrounding genetic meta-analysis of EEG features. We discuss the importance of harmonizing EEG signal processing, cleaning, and feature extraction. Finally, we explain our selection of EEG features currently being investigated, including the temporal dynamics of oscillations and the connectivity network based on synchronization of oscillations. Results: We present data that show how to perform systematic quality control and evaluate how choices in reference electrode and montage affect individual differences in EEG parameters. Conclusion: The long list of potential challenges to our large-scale meta-analytic approach requires extensive effort and organization between participating cohorts; however, our perspective shows that these challenges are surmountable. Our perspective argues that elucidating the genetic of EEG oscillatory activity is a worthwhile effort in order to elucidate the pathway from gene to disease liability.
    • The association of polygenic risk for schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and depression with neural connectivity in adolescents and young adults: examining developmental and sex differences.

      Meyers, J L; Chorlian, D B; Bigdeli, T B; Johnson, E C; Aliev, F; Agrawal, A; Almasy, L; Anokhin, A; Edenberg, H J; Foroud, T; et al. (2021-01-14)
      Neurodevelopmental abnormalities in neural connectivity have been long implicated in the etiology of schizophrenia (SCZ); however, it remains unclear whether these neural connectivity patterns are associated with genetic risk for SCZ in unaffected individuals (i.e., an absence of clinical features of SCZ or a family history of SCZ). We examine whether polygenic risk scores (PRS) for SCZ are associated with functional neural connectivity in adolescents and young adults without SCZ, whether this association is moderated by sex and age, and if similar associations are observed for genetically related neuropsychiatric PRS. One-thousand four-hundred twenty-six offspring from 913 families, unaffected with SCZ, were drawn from the Collaborative Study of the Genetics of Alcoholism (COGA) prospective cohort (median age at first interview = 15.6 (12-26), 51.6% female, 98.1% European American, 41% with a family history of alcohol dependence). Participants were followed longitudinally with resting-state EEG connectivity (i.e., coherence) assessed every two years. Higher SCZ PRS were associated with elevated theta (3-7 Hz) and alpha (7-12 Hz) EEG coherence. Associations differed by sex and age; the most robust associations were observed between PRS and parietal-occipital, central-parietal, and frontal-parietal alpha coherence among males between ages 15-19 (B: 0.15-0.21, p < 10). Significant associations among EEG coherence and Bipolar and Depression PRS were observed, but differed from SCZ PRS in terms of sex, age, and topography. Findings reveal that polygenic risk for SCZ is robustly associated with increased functional neural connectivity among young adults without a SCZ diagnosis. Striking differences were observed between men and women throughout development, mapping onto key periods of risk for the onset of psychotic illness and underlining the critical importance of examining sex differences in associations with neuropsychiatric PRS across development.
    • Predicting alcohol use disorder remission: a longitudinal multimodal multi-featured machine learning approach.

      Kinreich, Sivan; McCutcheon, Vivia V; Aliev, Fazil; Meyers, Jacquelyn L; Kamarajan, Chella; Pandey, Ashwini K; Chorlian, David B; Zhang, Jian; Kuang, Weipeng; Pandey, Gayathri; et al. (2021-03-15)
      Predictive models for recovering from alcohol use disorder (AUD) and identifying related predisposition biomarkers can have a tremendous impact on addiction treatment outcomes and cost reduction. Our sample (N = 1376) included individuals of European (EA) and African (AA) ancestry from the Collaborative Study on the Genetics of Alcoholism (COGA) who were initially assessed as having AUD (DSM-5) and reassessed years later as either having AUD or in remission. To predict this difference in AUD recovery status, we analyzed the initial data using multimodal, multi-features machine learning applications including EEG source-level functional brain connectivity, Polygenic Risk Scores (PRS), medications, and demographic information. Sex and ancestry age-matched stratified analyses were performed with supervised linear Support Vector Machine application and were calculated twice, once when the ancestry was defined by self-report and once defined by genetic data. Multifeatured prediction models achieved higher accuracy scores than models based on a single domain and higher scores in male models when the ancestry was based on genetic data. The AA male group model with PRS, EEG functional connectivity, marital and employment status features achieved the highest accuracy of 86.04%. Several discriminative features were identified, including collections of PRS related to neuroticism, depression, aggression, years of education, and alcohol consumption phenotypes. Other discriminated features included being married, employed, medication, lower default mode network and fusiform connectivity, and higher insula connectivity. Results highlight the importance of increasing genetic homogeneity of analyzed groups, identifying sex, and ancestry-specific features to increase prediction scores revealing biomarkers related to AUD remission.
    • The role of adolescent social relationships in promoting alcohol resistance: Interrupting the intergenerational transmission of alcohol misuse

      Stephenson, Mallory; Aliev, Fazil; Kuo, Sally I-Chun; Edwards, Alexis C.; Pandey, Gayathri; Su, Jinni; Kamarajan, Chella; Dick, Danielle; Salvatore, Jessica E. (Cambridge University Press (CUP), 2022-08-12)
      Genetic factors contribute to the intergenerational transmission of alcohol misuse, but not all individuals at high genetic risk develop problems. The present study examined adolescent relationships with parents, peers, and romantic partners as predictors of realized resistance, defined as high biological risk for disorder combined with a healthy outcome, to alcohol initiation, heavy episodic drinking, and alcohol use disorder (AUD). Data were from the Collaborative Study on the Genetics of Alcoholism (N = 1,858; 49.9% female; mean age at baseline = 13.91 years). Genetic risk, indexed using family history density and polygenic risk scores for alcohol problems and AUD, was used to define alcohol resistance. Adolescent predictors included parent-child relationship quality, parental monitoring, peer drinking, romantic partner drinking, and social competence. There was little support for the hypothesis that social relationship factors would promote alcohol resistance, with the exception that higher father-child relationship quality was associated with higher resistance to alcohol initiation (βˆ= −0.19, 95% CI = −0.35, −0.03). Unexpectedly, social competence was associated with lower resistance to heavy episodic drinking (βˆ= 0.10, 95% CI = 0.01, 0.20). This pattern of largely null effects underscores how little is known about resistance processes among those at high genetic risk for AUD.
    • AUD Risk, Diagnoses, and Course in a Prospective Study Across Two Generations: Implications for Prevention.

      Schuckit, Marc A (2022-01-06)
      This article is part of a Festschrift commemorating the 50th anniversary of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA). Established in 1970, first as part of the National Institute of Mental Health and later as an independent institute of the National Institutes of Health, NIAAA today is the world's largest funding agency for alcohol research. In addition to its own intramural research program, NIAAA supports the entire spectrum of innovative basic, translational, and clinical research to advance the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of alcohol use disorder and alcohol-related problems. To celebrate the anniversary, NIAAA hosted a 2-day symposium, "Alcohol Across the Lifespan: 50 Years of Evidence-Based Diagnosis, Prevention, and Treatment Research," devoted to key topics within the field of alcohol research. This article is based on Dr. Schuckit's presentation at the event. NIAAA Director George F. Koob, Ph.D., serves as editor of the Festschrift.
    • Binge and high-intensity drinking-Associations with intravenous alcohol self-administration and underlying risk factors.

      Plawecki, Martin H; Boes, Julian; Wetherill, Leah; Kosobud, Ann E K; Stangl, Bethany L; Ramchandani, Vijay A; Zimmermann, Ulrich S; Nurnberger, John I; Schuckit, Marc; Edenberg, Howard J; et al.
      Some styles of alcohol consumption are riskier than others. How the level and rate of alcohol exposure contribute to the increased risk of alcohol use disorder is unclear, but likely depends on the alcohol concentration time course. We hypothesized that the brain is sensitive to the alcohol concentration rate of change and that people at greater risk would self-administer faster. We developed a novel intravenous alcohol self-administration paradigm to allow participants direct and reproducible control over how quickly their breath alcohol concentration changes. We used drinking intensity and the density of biological family history of alcohol dependence as proxies for risk. Thirty-five alcohol drinking participants aged 21-28 years provided analytical data from a single, intravenous alcohol self-administration session using our computer-assisted alcohol infusion system rate control paradigm. A shorter time to reach 80 mg/dl was associated with increasing multiples of the binge drinking definition (p = 0.004), which was in turn related to higher density of family history of alcoholism (FHD, p = 0.04). Rate-dependent changes in subjective response (intoxication and stimulation) were also associated with FHD (each p = 0.001). Subsequently, given the limited sample size and FHD range, associations between multiples of the binge drinking definition and FHD were replicated and extended in analyses of the Collaborative Study on the Genetics of Alcoholism database. The rate control paradigm models binge and high-intensity drinking in the laboratory and provides a novel way to examine the relationship between the pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of alcohol and potentially the risk for the development of alcohol use disorders.
    • Gene-based polygenic risk scores analysis of alcohol use disorder in African Americans.

      Lai, Dongbing; Schwantes-An, Tae-Hwi; Abreu, Marco; Chan, Grace; Hesselbrock, Victor; Kamarajan, Chella; Liu, Yunlong; Meyers, Jacquelyn L; Nurnberger, John I; Plawecki, Martin H; et al. (2022-07-05)
      Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) in admixed populations such as African Americans (AA) have limited sample sizes, resulting in poor performance of polygenic risk scores (PRS). Based on the observations that many disease-causing genes are shared between AA and European ancestry (EA) populations, and some disease-causing variants are located within the boundaries of these genes, we proposed a novel gene-based PRS framework (PRS) by using variants located within disease-associated genes. Using the AA GWAS of alcohol use disorder (AUD) from the Million Veteran Program and the EA GWAS of problematic alcohol use as the discovery GWAS, we identified 858 variants from 410 genes that were AUD-related in both AA and EA. PRS calculated using these variants were significantly associated with AUD in three AA target datasets (P-values ranged from 7.61E-05 to 6.27E-03; Betas ranged from 0.15 to 0.21) and outperformed PRS calculated using all variants (P-values ranged from 7.28E-03 to 0.16; Betas ranged from 0.06 to 0.18). PRS were also associated with AUD in an EA target dataset (P-value = 0.02, Beta = 0.11). In AA, individuals in the highest PRS decile had an odds ratio of 1.76 (95% CI: 1.32-2.34) to develop AUD compared to those in the lowest decile. The 410 genes were enriched in 54 Gene Ontology biological processes, including ethanol oxidation and processes involving the synaptic system, which are known to be AUD-related. In addition, 26 genes were targets of drugs used to treat AUD or other diseases that might be considered for repurposing to treat AUD. Our study demonstrated that the gene-based PRS had improved performance in evaluating AUD risk in AA and provided new insight into AUD genetics.
    • Statistical Nonparametric fMRI Maps in the Analysis of Response Inhibition in Abstinent Individuals with History of Alcohol Use Disorder.

      Pandey, Ashwini Kumar; Ardekani, Babak Assai; Byrne, Kelly Nicole-Helen; Kamarajan, Chella; Zhang, Jian; Pandey, Gayathri; Meyers, Jacquelyn Leigh; Kinreich, Sivan; Chorlian, David Balin; Kuang, Weipeng; et al. (2022-04-21)
      Inhibitory impairments may persist after abstinence in individuals with alcohol use disorder (AUD). Using traditional statistical parametric mapping (SPM) fMRI analysis, which requires data to satisfy parametric assumptions often difficult to satisfy in biophysical system as brain, studies have reported equivocal findings on brain areas responsible for response inhibition, and activation abnormalities during inhibition found in AUD persist after abstinence. Research is warranted using newer analysis approaches. fMRI scans were acquired during a Go/NoGo task from 30 abstinent male AUD and 30 healthy control participants with the objectives being (1) to characterize neuronal substrates associated with response inhibition using a rigorous nonparametric permutation-based fMRI analysis and (2) to determine whether these regions were differentially activated between abstinent AUD and control participants. A blood oxygen level dependent contrast analysis showed significant activation in several right cortical regions and deactivation in some left cortical regions during successful inhibition. The largest source of variance in activation level was due to group differences. The findings provide evidence of cortical substrates employed during response inhibition. The largest variance was explained by lower activation in inhibition as well as ventral attentional cortical networks in abstinent individuals with AUD, which were not found to be associated with length of abstinence, age, or impulsiveness.
    • Differentiating Individuals with and without Alcohol Use Disorder Using Resting-State fMRI Functional Connectivity of Reward Network, Neuropsychological Performance, and Impulsivity Measures.

      Kamarajan, Chella; Ardekani, Babak A; Pandey, Ashwini K; Kinreich, Sivan; Pandey, Gayathri; Chorlian, David B; Meyers, Jacquelyn L; Zhang, Jian; Bermudez, Elaine; Kuang, Weipeng; et al. (2022-04-28)
      Individuals with alcohol use disorder (AUD) may manifest an array of neural and behavioral abnormalities, including altered brain networks, impaired neurocognitive functioning, and heightened impulsivity. Using multidomain measures, the current study aimed to identify specific features that can differentiate individuals with AUD from healthy controls (CTL), utilizing a random forests (RF) classification model. Features included fMRI-based resting-state functional connectivity (rsFC) across the reward network, neuropsychological task performance, and behavioral impulsivity scores, collected from thirty abstinent adult males with prior history of AUD and thirty CTL individuals without a history of AUD. It was found that the RF model achieved a classification accuracy of 86.67% (AUC = 93%) and identified key features of FC and impulsivity that significantly contributed to classifying AUD from CTL individuals. Impulsivity scores were the topmost predictors, followed by twelve rsFC features involving seventeen key reward regions in the brain, such as the ventral tegmental area, nucleus accumbens, anterior insula, anterior cingulate cortex, and other cortical and subcortical structures. Individuals with AUD manifested significant differences in impulsivity and alterations in functional connectivity relative to controls. Specifically, AUD showed heightened impulsivity and hypoconnectivity in nine connections across 13 regions and hyperconnectivity in three connections involving six regions. Relative to controls, visuo-spatial short-term working memory was also found to be impaired in AUD. In conclusion, specific multidomain features of brain connectivity, impulsivity, and neuropsychological performance can be used in a machine learning framework to effectively classify AUD individuals from healthy controls.
    • The Beast with Two Backs

      Wade, Erik (University of California Press, 2020-07-29)
      Today, the comparison of male homosexuality to bestiality is unfortunately too well-known from homophobic polemics. Yet this comparison has a history in the Anglophone world, and it emerged in the early European Middle Ages seemingly not in order to dehumanize men who had sex with men but in order to make bestiality appear serious by comparing it to male-male sexual acts. The eighth-century Paenitentiale Theodori—which collects the judgments of the Byzantine-born Archbishop Theodore—is the earliest extant English text to connect male-male sexual acts with bestiality. This comparison does not occur in the previous penitentials, but, after its appearance in the Paenitentiale, this comparison traveled throughout Western Europe. No scholarship to date examines the global origins of such a comparison. This paper argues that later medieval views of bestiality as perverse and as a serious sexual offense emerged from bestiality’s early comparison to same-sex acts (rather than vice-versa). Prior to the Paenitentiale Theodori, European theologians described bestiality as a minor sin akin to masturbation. Theodore borrowed the comparison of bestiality and male-male sex acts from a Latin mistranslation of the 314 Greek Council of Ancyra and from the Byzantine theologian St. Basil the Great. Since the early penitentials accorded male-male sexual acts some of the most serious penances, the comparison of bestiality to these acts elevated bestiality for the first time in Western Europe to the status of a serious and unnatural sin. Through connection to effeminizing male-male sexual acts, bestiality gained a reputation as a serious, boundary-violating sin in its own right.
    • TEAMing up with Students and Faculty: Using Microsoft Teams to Increase Student-Librarian Interaction in Asynchronous Learning

      Rath, Logan, PhD (SUNY Brockport, Drake Memorial Library, 2022-06)
      PowerPoint Presentation on ways to enhance student-librarian interactions through creative use of MS Teams.
    • Distribution of HIV Self-tests by Men Who have Sex with Men (MSM) to Social Network Associates.

      Patel, Shilpa N; Chavez, Pollyanna R; Borkowf, Craig B; Sullivan, Patrick S; Sharma, Akshay; Teplinskiy, Ilya; Delaney, Kevin P; Hirshfield, Sabina; Wesolowski, Laura G; McNaghten, A D; et al. (2022-11-01)
      Internet-recruited gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (MSM) were offered HIV self-tests (HIVSTs) after completing baseline, 3-, 6-, and 9-month follow-up surveys. The surveys asked about the use and distribution of these HIVSTs. Among 995 who reported on their distribution of HIVSTs, 667 (67.0%) distributed HIVSTs to their social network associates (SNAs), which resulted in 34 newly identified HIV infections among 2301 SNAs (1.5%). The main reasons participants reported not distributing HIVSTs included: wanting to use the HIVSTs themselves (74.9%); thinking that their SNAs would get angry or upset if offered HIVSTs (12.5%); or not knowing that they could give the HIVSTs away (11.3%). Self-testing programs can provide multiple HIVSTs and encourage the distribution of HIVST by MSM to their SNAs to increase awareness of HIV status among persons disproportionately affected by HIV.
    • Jamaican Susumber Berry Poisoning Mimicking Acute Stroke.

      Tamaiev, Jonathan; Trebach, Joshua; Rosso, Michela; Moriarty, Jeremy; DiSalvo, Phil; Biary, Rana; Su, Mark; Perk, Jonathan; Levine, Steven R (2022-10-25)
      Background: Stroke mimics are non-vascular conditions that present with acute focal neurological deficits, simulating an acute ischemic stroke. Susumber berry (SB) toxicity is a rare cause of stroke mimic with limited case reports available in the literature. Objectives: We report four new cases of SB toxicity presenting as stroke mimic, and we performed a systematic review. Methods: MEDLINE/EMBASE/WoS were searched for "susumber berries," "susumber," or "solanum torvum." Results: 531 abstracts were screened after removal of duplicates; 5 articles and 2 conference abstracts were selected describing 13 patients. A total of 17 patients who ingested SB and became ill were identified, including our 4 patients. All but one presented with acute neurologic manifestation; 16 (94%) presented with dysarthria, 16 (94%) with unstable gait, 8 (47%) with nystagmus/gaze deviation, 10 (59%) with blurry vision, and 5 (29%) with autonomic symptoms. Six (35%) required ICU admission, and 3 (18%) were intubated. Fourteen (82%) had a rapid complete recovery, and 3 were hospitalized up to 1 month. Conclusions: SB toxicity can cause neurological symptoms that mimic an acute stroke typically with a posterior circulation symptom complex. Altered SB toxins (from post-harvest stressors or temperature changes) might stimulate muscarinic/nicotinic cholinergic receptors or inhibit acetylcholinesterase, causing gastrointestinal, neurological, and autonomic symptoms. In cases of multiple patients presenting simultaneously to the ED with stroke-like symptoms or when stroke-like symptoms fail to localize, a toxicological etiology (such as SB toxicity) should be considered.
    • ATP-Binding Cassette Transporter Family C Protein 10 Participates in the Synthesis and Efflux of Hexosylceramides in Liver Cells.

      Iqbal, Jahangir; Walsh, Meghan T; Hussain, M Mahmood (2022-10-20)
      In addition to sphingomyelin and ceramide, sugar derivatives of ceramides, hexosylceramides (HexCer) are the major circulating sphingolipids. We have shown that silencing of ABCA1 transmembrane protein function for instance in cases of loss of function of ABCA1 gene results in low levels of HDL as well as a concomitant reduction in plasma HexCer levels. However, proteins involved in hepatic synthesis and egress of HexCer from cells is not well known although ABCA1 seems to be indirectly controlling the HexCer plasma levels by supporting HDL synthesis. In this study, we hypothesized that protein(s) other than ABCA1 are involved in the transport of HexCer to HDL. Using an unbiased knockdown approach, we found that ATP-binding cassette transporter protein C10 (ABCC10) participates in the synthesis of HexCer and thereby affects egress to HDL in human hepatoma Huh-7 cells. Furthermore, livers from ABCC10 deficient mice had significantly lower levels of HexCer compared to wild type livers. These studies suggest that ABCC10 partakes in modulating the synthesis and subsequent efflux of HexCer to HDL in liver cells.
    • Virtual Reality Hemifield Measurements for Corrective Surgery Eligibility in Ptosis Patients: A Pilot Clinical Trial.

      Labkovich, Margarita; Warburton, Andrew J; Ying, Stephanie; Valliani, Aly A; Kissel, Nicholas; Serafini, Randal A; Mathew, Raj; Paul, Megan; Hovstadius, S Malin; Navarro, Vicente N; et al.
      Purpose: We developed an accelerated virtual reality (VR) suprathreshold hemifield perimetry algorithm, the median cut hemifield test (MCHT). This study examines the ability of the MCHT to determine ptosis severity and its reversibility with an artificial improvement by eyelid taping on an HTC Vive Pro Eye VR headset and the Humphrey visual field analyzer (HVFA) to assess the capabilities of emerging technologies in evaluating ptosis. Methods: In a single visit, the MCHT was administered along with the HVFA 30-2 on ptotic untaped and taped eyelids in a randomized order. The primary end points were a superior field visibility comparison with severity of VF loss and VF improvement after taping for MCHT and HVFA. Secondary end points included evaluating patients' Likert-scaled survey responses on the comfort, speed, and overall experience with both testing modalities. Results: VR's MCHT superior field degrees visible correlated well for severe category margin to reflex distance (r = 0.78) compared with HVFA's (r = -0.21). The MCHT also demonstrated noninferiority (83.3% agreement; P = 1) against HVFA for detection of 30% or more superior visual field improvement after taping, warranting a corrective surgical intervention. In comparing hemi-VF in untaped eyes, both tests demonstrated relative obstruction to the field when comparing normal controls to severe ptosis (HVFA P < 0.05; MCHT P < 0.001), which proved sufficient to demonstrate percent improvement with taping. The secondary end point of patient satisfaction favored VR vision testing presentation mode in terms of comfort (P < 0.01), speed (P < 0.001), and overall experience (P < 0.01). Conclusions: This pilot trial supports the use of MCHT for the quantitative measurement of visual field loss owing to ptosis and the reversibility of ptosis that is tested when conducting a presurgical evaluation. We believe the adoption of MCHT testing in oculoplastic clinics could decrease patient burden and accelerate time to corrective treatment. Translational relevance: In this study, we look at vision field outputs in patients with ptosis to evaluate its severity and improvement with eyelid taping on a low-profile VR-based technology and compare it with HVFA. Our results demonstrate that alternative, portable technologies such as VR can be used to grade the degree of ptosis and determine whether ptosis surgery could provide a significant superior visual field improvement of 30% or more, all while ensuring a more comfortable experience and faster testing time.
    • Body-worn cameras: Technological frames and project abandonment

      Koen, Marthinus C.; Newell, Bryce Clayton; Roberts, Melinda R. (Elsevier BV, 2021-01)
      This case study examines the technological frames of administrators and users regarding the implementation of body-worn cameras at the Pennybridge Police Department, a mid-sized police organization (<300) in the Mid-Western United States. Using semi-structured interviews, a patrol survey, and ride-along observations; we found that different actors based on their hierarchy and function framed body-worn cameras differently over time. Administrators implemented body-cameras to protect officers from frivolous complaints while at the same time holding them accountable for their behavior. Users felt, for the most part, that the technology had become a “gotcha mechanism” as body camera footage was used to placate the public, monitor officer behavior, and charge them with minor infractions. Adding to their frustrations, users felt increasingly dispirited by the technical shortcomings of the cameras and the backend storage system provided by the vendor. At the same time, administrators were vexed by the financial and logistical burden of the program, ultimately leading to project abandonment and a search for a new system. Our findings have important implications for policymakers and future research.
    • The Pennybridge pioneers: understanding internal stakeholder perceptions of body-worn camera implementation

      Koen, Marthinus C.; Newell, Bryce Clayton; Roberts, Melinda R. (Informa UK Limited, 2022-08-22)
      Since body-worn cameras (BWCs) were catapulted into mainstream discourse, they have diffused rapidly across police agencies in the United States. Research followed swiftly, providing a wealth of information about how the police and citizens make sense of these technologies. Moreover, we have learned how these technologies have impacted important policing outcomes, such as citizen complaints and the use of coercive force during citizen encounters. However, despite the growing body of research, very little is known about how police stakeholders make sense of the implementation of BWCs and about their decision-making throughout the implementation process. Therefore, this research examines the decision to implement BWCs in one mid-sized municipal police department in the United States through the lens of Rogers (2003) Diffusion of Innovations theoretical framework. We rely on semi-structured interviews and observations with 17 stakeholders to address this question. Our findings show that BWC technology generally posed little uncertainty for stakeholders in terms of what it could offer conceptually. However, because the agency was an early adopter, decision-makers were confronted with significant uncertainty about practical matters such as the financial and logistical costs of implementing the technology, in addition to policy creation. These findings have important implications for scholars and practitioners.