Lower mortality among migrants than in the general population has been found in many, but not in all, previous studies. The mortality of migrants has not been studied in Finland, which has a relatively small and recent migrant population.
People who were born abroad and whose mother tongue is not Finnish were identified from the Finnish Central Population Register (n = 185 605). A Finnish-born control matched by age, sex and place of residence was identified for each case (n = 185 605). Information about deaths was collected from the Finnish Causes of Death Register. Cox proportional hazards model was used for assessing the association between migrant status and death in 2011–13.
The mortality risk was found to be significantly lower for migrants than for Finnish controls (adjusted hazard ratio 0.77, 95% CI 0.72–0.84), both for migrant men (aHR 0.80, 95% CI 0.73–0.89) and women (aHR 0.78, 95% CI 0.70–0.88). The difference was statistically significant only among people who were not married and among people who were not in employment. There was variation by country of birth, but no migrant group had higher mortality than Finnish controls. No differences in mortality were found by duration of residence in Finland. The higher mortality of Finnish controls was largely explained by alcohol-related conditions and external causes of death.
The mortality risk of migrants is lower than of people who were born in Finland. Possible explanations include selection and differences in substance use and other health behaviour.
The management of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) is strictly regulated in Norway. However, nationwide studies of the epidemic are lacking.
To describe the MDR-TB epidemic in Norway over two decades.
Retrospective analysis of data on MDR-TB cases in Norway, 1995-2014, obtained from the national registry, patient records and the reference laboratory, with genotyping and cluster analysis data. Data for non-MDR-TB cases were collected from the national registry.
Of 4427 TB cases, 89 (2.0%) had MDR-TB, 7% of whom had extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB) and 24% pre-XDR-TB. Of the 89 MDR-TB cases, 96% were immigrants, mainly from the Horn of Africa or the former Soviet Union (FSU); 37% had smear-positive TB; and 4% were human immunodeficiency virus co-infected. Of the 19% infected in Norway, the majority belonged to a Delhi/Central Asian lineage cluster in a local Somali community. Among the MDR-TB cases, smear-positive TB and FSU origin were independent risk factors for XDR/pre-XDR-TB. Treatment was successful in 66%; 17% were lost to follow-up, with illicit drug use and adolescence being independent risk factors. Forty-four per cent of patients treated with linezolid discontinued treatment due to adverse effects.
MDR-TB is rare in Norway and is predominantly seen in immigrants from the Horn of Africa and FSU. Domestic transmission outside immigrant populations is minimal.
Although it has previously been shown that Neanderthals contributed DNA to modern humans, not much is known about the genetic diversity of Neanderthals or the relationship between late Neanderthal populations at the time at which their last interactions with early modern humans occurred and before they eventually disappeared. Our ability to retrieve DNA from a larger number of Neanderthal individuals has been limited by poor preservation of endogenous DNA and contamination of Neanderthal skeletal remains by large amounts of microbial and present-day human DNA. Here we use hypochlorite treatment of as little as 9 mg of bone or tooth powder to generate between 1- and 2.7-fold genomic coverage of five Neanderthals who lived around 39,000 to 47,000 years ago (that is, late Neanderthals), thereby doubling the number of Neanderthals for which genome sequences are available. Genetic similarity among late Neanderthals is well predicted by their geographical location, and comparison to the genome of an older Neanderthal from the Caucasus indicates that a population turnover is likely to have occurred, either in the Caucasus or throughout Europe, towards the end of Neanderthal history. We find that the bulk of Neanderthal gene flow into early modern humans originated from one or more source populations that diverged from the Neanderthals that were studied here at least 70,000 years ago, but after they split from a previously sequenced Neanderthal from Siberia around 150,000 years ago. Although four of the Neanderthals studied here post-date the putative arrival of early modern humans into Europe, we do not detect any recent gene flow from early modern humans in their ancestry.
Cites: PLoS One. 2010 Nov 16;5(11):e14004 PMID 21103372
Cites: Nature. 2016 Mar 24;531(7595):504-7 PMID 26976447
Cites: Nature. 2014 Jan 2;505(7481):43-9 PMID 24352235
Amongst psychiatric patients, the leading causes of reduced quality of life and premature death are chronic viral infections and cardiovascular diseases. In spite of this, there are extremely high levels of disparity in somatic healthcare amongst such populations. Little research has explored patterns of healthcare utilisation and, therefore, this study aims to examine the use of somatic specialist healthcare for infectious diseases and diseases of circulatory system among psychiatric patients from different immigrant groups and ethnic Norwegians.
Register data from the Norwegian Patient Registry and Statistics Norway were used. The sample (ages 0-90+) consisted of 276,890 native-born Norwegians and 52,473 immigrants from five world regions - Western countries, East Europe, Africa, Asia, and Latin America, all of whom had contacts with specialist mental healthcare during the period 2008-2011. Statistical analyses were applied using logistic regression models.
Rates of outpatient consultation for circulatory system diseases were significantly lower amongst patients from Africa, Asia and Latin America compared with ethnic Norwegian psychiatric patients. Only patients from Eastern Europeans had a higher rate. With regard to hospital admission, all psychiatric patients had a lower rate than ethnic Norwegians with the exception of those from Africa where the finding was non-significant. In terms of infectious diseases, patients from African countries had significantly higher outpatient and admission rates than ethnic Norwegians. Outpatient consultation rates were lower amongst those from Western and Latin America and hospital admission rates were lower amongst those from Eastern Europe and Asia.
The findings suggest that the majority of immigrant psychiatric patients have lower hospitalization rates for circulatory system diseases than Norwegian psychiatric patients. This may suggest that poor access for immigrants is a contributing factor, though the findings were less pronounced for infectious diseases.
There is increasing evidence that vitamin D status is associated with muscle function. Vitamin D deficiency is common in immigrants. We hypothesized that there was a positive association between vitamin D status and muscle strength in immigrants. The aim of this study was to examine associations between vitamin D status and muscle strength in an immigrant population in Sweden. All immigrants aged 25-65 years, born in 9 African or Middle East countries, and living in a district in Umeå (n = 1306) were invited. A total of 111 men and 105 women (16.5%) completed the study. Lower limb muscle strength was examined using a standardized muscle function indices of muscle strength. Grip strength was examined using a JAMAR hand dynamometer. Serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D] was measured using liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. The analyses were adjusted for sex, age, height, body mass index, years since immigration, 25(OH)D, vitamin D deficiency, physical activity, and medical and socioeconomic factors. Twelve percent of the immigrants had vitamin D deficiency [25(OH)D levels