Research in traumatic brain injury (TBI) is challenging for several reasons; in particular, the heterogeneity between patients regarding causes, pathophysiology, treatment, and outcome. Advances in basic science have failed to translate into successful clinical treatments, and the evidence underpinning guideline recommendations is weak. Because clinical research has been hampered by non-standardised data collection, restricted multidisciplinary collaboration, and the lack of sensitivity of classification and efficacy analyses, multidisciplinary collaborations are now being fostered. Approaches to deal with heterogeneity have been developed by the IMPACT study group. These approaches can increase statistical power in clinical trials by up to 50% and are also relevant to other heterogeneous neurological diseases, such as stroke and subarachnoid haemorrhage. Rather than trying to limit heterogeneity, we might also be able to exploit it by analysing differences in treatment and outcome between countries and centres in comparative effectiveness research. This approach has great potential to advance care in patients with TBI.
The search for effective tumor inhibitors for human use from higher plants requires a well-organized, cost and time efficient system for the initial evaluation of plants for potential antitumor activity. Three fundamental approaches currently being employed for the selection of the 750 000 candidate species are discussed. These include random selection screening, the use of information from traditional medicine to gain an insight from existing indigenous preparations, and a review of published experimental data that indicate antitumor activity for extracts of plants. In addition, a fourth approach, involving a combination of the aforementioned methods is proposed. This approach is modeled after a program initiated by the World Health Organization for the purpose of screening and investigating indigenous plants for fertility regulation.
Several consensus groups have previously published operational criteria for sarcopenia, incorporating lean mass with strength and/or physical performance. The purpose of this manuscript is to describe the prevalence, agreement, and discrepancies between the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health (FNIH) criteria with other operational definitions for sarcopenia.
The FNIH Sarcopenia Project used data from nine studies including: Age, Gene and Environment Susceptibility-Reykjavik Study; Boston Puerto Rican Health Study; a series of six clinical trials from the University of Connecticut; Framingham Heart Study; Health, Aging, and Body Composition Study; Invecchiare in Chianti; Osteoporotic Fractures in Men Study; Rancho Bernardo Study; and Study of Osteoporotic Fractures. Participants included in these analyses were aged 65 and older and had measures of body mass index, appendicular lean mass, grip strength, and gait speed.
The prevalence of sarcopenia and agreement proportions was higher in women than men. The lowest prevalence was observed with the FNIH criteria (1.3% men and 2.3% women) compared with the International Working Group and the European Working Group for Sarcopenia in Older Persons (5.1% and 5.3% in men and 11.8% and 13.3% in women, respectively). The positive percent agreements between the FNIH criteria and other criteria were low, ranging from 7% to 32% in men and 5% to 19% in women. However, the negative percent agreement were high (all >95%).
The FNIH criteria result in a more conservative operational definition of sarcopenia, and the prevalence was lower compared with other proposed criteria. Agreement for diagnosing sarcopenia was low, but agreement for ruling out sarcopenia was very high. Consensus on the operational criteria for the diagnosis of sarcopenia is much needed to characterize populations for study and to identify adults for treatment.
Cites: J Nutr Health Aging. 2013 Jan;17(1):76-8023299384
The Canadian Neurological Scale (CNS) and the National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS) are among the most reliable stroke severity assessment scales. The CNS requires less extensive neurological evaluation and is quicker and simpler to administer.
Our aim was to develop and validate a simple conversion model from the CNS to the NIHSS.
A conversion model was developed using data from a consecutive series of acute-stroke patients who were scored using both scales. The model was then validated in an external dataset in which all patients were prospectively assessed for stroke severity using both scales by different observers which consisted of neurology residents or stroke fellows.
In all, 168 patients were included in the model development, with a median age of 73 years (20-94). Men constituted 51.8%. The median NIHSS score was 6 (0-31). The median CNS score was 8.5 (1.5-11.5). The relationship between CNS and NIHSS could be expressed as the formula: NIHSS = 23 - 2 x CNS. A cohort of 350 acute-stroke patients with similar characteristics was used for model validation. There was a highly significant positive correlation between the observed and predicted NIHSS score (r = 0.87, p
Persons age 65 years and older bear the greater burden of cancer in the United States and other industrial nations. A cross-national perspective using data from several population-based resources (eg, the NCI Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results Program; US Bureau of Census; World Health Organization; and International Association for Research on Cancer) illustrates current and future demographic transitions in America in comparison with six industrial nations, and profiles cancer mortality in older persons across the selected nations--Denmark, France, Italy, Japan, Sweden, and United Kingdom. Mortality rates, age-standardized to the world population, are presented for major tumors. US aging and cancer profiles are highlighted. Demographic projections portend a substantial increase in numbers of older persons, and thus, imply resultant increases in cancer incidence and mortality in the elderly. By 2030, there will be larger proportions of persons in the age group most vulnerable to cancer. Information is needed on how age-related health problems affect cancer prevention, detection, prognosis, and treatment. A knowledge base as guidance in management of cancer in the elderly is lacking. Planning for effective prevention measures and improvement of treatment for the elderly is imperative to meet current and future quality cancer care needs.
The US-associated Pacific Island jurisdictions (USAPI) have great disparities in health care and comprehensive cancer care compared to the United States. Cancer mortality ranks first or second among the leading causes of death in most of these island nations. The USAPI has formed the Cancer Council of the Pacific Islands (CCPI), an indigenous council to identify and address the cancer health disparities of the region. The CCPI efforts were formally launched in 2002 with the support of the Center to Reduce Cancer Health Disparities, a Center of the National Cancer Institute (CRCHD-NCI) and the National Center for Minority Health Disparities, a Center of the National Institutes of Health (NCMHD-NIH). Facilitating partners are the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health, University of Hawai'i and 'Imi Hale - Native Hawaiian Cancer Network, a program of Papa Ola Lokahi. The objectives of this initiative are to describe and address the cancer health disparities in the USAPI. Over the past 2 years there has been considerable progress in identifying and prioritizing cancer prevention and control needs; launching cancer prevention and control efforts in each of the jurisdictions; and leveraging additional funding to support ongoing activities. The support from the Center to Reduce Cancer Health Disparities in fostering a participatory model of development has been landmark in the establishment and implementation of this initiative. This manuscript provides a historical background on cancer in the USAPI and prefaces 9 cancer assessments in this journal from the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, American Samoa, Republic of the Marshall Islands, Republic of Belau, and the four states (Yap, Pohnpei, Kosrae and Chuuk) of the Federated States of Micronesia.