Discover the most talked about and latest scientific content & concepts.

Concept: Dose-response relationship


To quantify the association between daily total sitting and all-cause mortality risk and to examine dose-response relationships with and without adjustment for moderate-to-vigorous physical activity.

Concepts: The Association, Dose-response relationship, Sunshine pop


 To estimate the strength and shape of the dose-response relationship between sedentary behaviour and all-cause, cardiovascular disease (CVD) and cancer mortality, and incident type 2 diabetes (T2D), adjusted for physical activity (PA). Data Sources: Pubmed, Web of Knowledge, Medline, Embase, Cochrane Library and Google Scholar (through September-2016); reference lists. Study Selection: Prospective studies reporting associations between total daily sedentary time or TV viewing time, and ≥ one outcome of interest. Data Extraction: Two independent reviewers extracted data, study quality was assessed; corresponding authors were approached where needed. Data Synthesis: Thirty-four studies (1,331,468 unique participants; good study quality) covering 8 exposure-outcome combinations were included. For total sedentary behaviour, the PA-adjusted relationship was non-linear for all-cause mortality (RR per 1 h/day: were 1.01 (1.00-1.01) ≤ 8 h/day; 1.04 (1.03-1.05) > 8 h/day of exposure), and for CVD mortality (1.01 (0.99-1.02) ≤ 6 h/day; 1.04 (1.03-1.04) > 6 h/day). The association was linear (1.01 (1.00-1.01)) with T2D and non-significant with cancer mortality. Stronger PA-adjusted associations were found for TV viewing (h/day); non-linear for all-cause mortality (1.03 (1.01-1.04) ≤ 3.5 h/day; 1.06 (1.05-1.08) > 3.5 h/day) and for CVD mortality (1.02 (0.99-1.04) ≤ 4 h/day; 1.08 (1.05-1.12) > 4 h/day). Associations with cancer mortality (1.03 (1.02-1.04)) and T2D were linear (1.09 (1.07-1.12)).

Concepts: Hypertension, Diabetes mellitus type 2, Diabetes mellitus, Obesity, Evidence-based medicine, MEDLINE, Dose-response relationship


To quantify age, sex, sport and training type-specific effects of resistance training on physical performance, and to characterise dose-response relationships of resistance training parameters that could maximise gains in physical performance in youth athletes.

Concepts: Evidence-based medicine, Systematic review, Meta-analysis, Dose-response relationship


Bisphenol-A (BPA) is a potential endocrine disruptor impacting metabolic processes and increasing the risk of obesity. To determine whether urine BPA level is associated with overweight/obesity in school-age children, we examined 1,326 students in grades 4-12 from three schools (one elementary, one middle, and one high school) in Shanghai. More than 98% of eligible students participated. Total urine BPA concentration was measured and anthropometric measures were taken by trained research staff. Information on risk factors for childhood obesity was collected for potential confounders. Age- and gender-specific weight greater than 90(th) percentile of the underlying population was the outcome measure. After adjustment for potential confounders, a higher urine BPA level (≥2 µg/L), at the level corresponding to the median urine BPA level in the U.S. population, was associated with more than two-fold increased risk of having weight >90(th) percentile among girls aged 9-12 (adjusted odds ratio (aOR) = 2.32, 95% confidence interval: 1.15-4.65). The association showed a dose-response relationship with increasing urine BPA level associated with further increased risk of overweight (p = 0.006 for trend test). Other anthropometric measures of obesity showed similar results. The same association was not observed among boys. This gender difference of BPA effect was consistent with findings from experimental studies and previous epidemiological studies. Our study suggests that BPA could be a potential new environmental obesogen. Widespread exposure to BPA in the human population may also be contributing to the worldwide obesity epidemic.

Concepts: Epidemiology, Nutrition, Obesity, Measurement, Odds ratio, Bisphenol A, Endocrine disruptor, Dose-response relationship


OBJECTIVES: (1) To determine the distribution of formal patient complaints across Australia’s medical workforce and (2) to identify characteristics of doctors at high risk of incurring recurrent complaints. METHODS: We assembled a national sample of all 18 907 formal patient complaints filed against doctors with health service ombudsmen (‘Commissions’) in Australia over an 11-year period. We analysed the distribution of complaints among practicing doctors. We then used recurrent-event survival analysis to identify characteristics of doctors at high risk of recurrent complaints, and to estimate each individual doctor’s risk of incurring future complaints. RESULTS: The distribution of complaints among doctors was highly skewed: 3% of Australia’s medical workforce accounted for 49% of complaints and 1% accounted for a quarter of complaints. Short-term risks of recurrence varied significantly among doctors: there was a strong dose-response relationship with number of previous complaints and significant differences by doctor specialty and sex. At the practitioner level, risks varied widely, from doctors with <10% risk of further complaints within 2 years to doctors with >80% risk. CONCLUSIONS: A small group of doctors accounts for half of all patient complaints lodged with Australian Commissions. It is feasible to predict which doctors are at high risk of incurring more complaints in the near future. Widespread use of this approach to identify high-risk doctors and target quality improvement efforts coupled with effective interventions, could help reduce adverse events and patient dissatisfaction in health systems.

Concepts: Health care, Health care provider, Medicine, Health, Risk, Physician, Dose-response relationship, Doctor


There is a lack of consensus regarding the optimal range of carbohydrate (CHO) ingestion rates recommended for endurance athletes.

Concepts: Dose-response relationship


The purpose of this study was to assess the effect of resistance training cessation on strength performance through a meta-analysis. Seven databases were searched from which 103 of 284 potential studies met inclusion criteria. Training status, sex, age, and the duration of training cessation were used as moderators. Standardized mean difference (SMD) in muscular performance was calculated and weighted by the inverse of variance to calculate an overall effect and its 95% confidence interval (CI). Results indicated a detrimental effect of resistance training cessation on all components of muscular performance: [submaximal strength; SMD (95% CI) = -0.62 (-0.80 to -0.45), P < 0.01], [maximal force; SMD (95% CI) = -0.46 (-0.54 to -0.37), P < 0.01], [maximal power; SMD (95% CI) = -0.20 (-0.28 to -0.13), P < 0.01]. A dose-response relationship between the amplitude of SMD and the duration of training cessation was identified. The effect of resistance training cessation was found to be larger in older people (> 65 years old). The effect was also larger in inactive people for maximal force and maximal power when compared with recreational athletes. Resistance training cessation decreases all components of muscular strength. The magnitude of the effect differs according to training status, age or the duration of training cessation.

Concepts: Old age, Probability theory, Strength training, Normal distribution, Effect size, Standard deviation, Isometric exercise, Dose-response relationship


Neurofeedback therapy (NFT) has been used within a number of populations however it has not been applied or thoroughly examined as a form of cognitive rehabilitation within a stroke population. Objectives for this systematic review included: i) identifying how NFT is utilized to treat cognitive deficits following stroke, ii) examining the strength and quality of evidence to support the use of NFT as a form of cognitive rehabilitation therapy (CRT) and iii) providing recommendations for future investigations. Searches were conducted using OVID (Medline, Health Star, Embase + Embase Classic) and PubMed databases. Additional searches were completed using the Cochrane Reviews library database, Google Scholar, the University of Toronto online library catalogue, website and select journals. Searches were completed Feb/March 2015 and updated in June/July/Aug 2015. Eight studies were eligible for inclusion in this review. Studies were eligible for inclusion if they: i) were specific to a stroke population, ii) delivered CRT via a NFT protocol, iii) included participants who were affected by a cognitive deficit(s) following stroke (i.e. memory loss, loss of executive function, speech impairment etc.). NFT protocols were highly specific and varied within each study. The majority of studies identified improvements in participant cognitive deficits following the initiation of therapy. Reviewers assessed study quality using the Downs and Black Checklist for Measuring Study Quality tool; limited study quality and strength of evidence restricted generalizability of conclusions regarding the use of this therapy to the greater stroke population. Progression in this field requires further inquiry to strengthen methodology quality and study design. Future investigations should aim to standardize NFT protocols in an effort to understand the dose-response relationship between NFT and improvements in functional outcome. Future investigations should also place a large emphasis on long-term participant follow-up.

Concepts: Evidence-based medicine, Cochrane Library, Traumatic brain injury, MEDLINE, Cultural studies, Dose-response relationship, PubMed, Neurofeedback


Purpose: This work investigates the dose-response curves of GAFCHROMIC(®) EBT, EBT2, and EBT3 radiochromic films using synchrotron-produced monochromatic x-ray beams. EBT2 film is being utilized for dose verification in photoactivated Auger electron therapy at the Louisiana State University Center for Advanced Microstructures and Devices (CAMD) synchrotron facility.Methods: Monochromatic beams of 25, 30, and 35 keV were generated on the tomography beamline at CAMD. Ion chamber depth-dose measurements were used to determine the dose delivered to films irradiated at depths from 0.7 to 8.5 cm in a 10 × 10 × 10-cm(3) polymethylmethacrylate phantom. AAPM TG-61 protocol was applied to convert measured ionization into dose. Films were digitized using an Epson 1680 Professional flatbed scanner and analyzed using the net optical density (NOD) derived from the red channel. A dose-response curve was obtained at 35 keV for EBT film, and at 25, 30, and 35 keV for EBT2 and EBT3 films. Calibrations of films for 4 MV x-rays were obtained for comparison using a radiotherapy accelerator at Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center.Results: The sensitivity (NOD per unit dose) of EBT film at 35 keV relative to that for 4-MV x-rays was 0.73 and 0.76 for doses 50 and 100 cGy, respectively. The sensitivity of EBT2 film at 25, 30, and 35 keV relative to that for 4-MV x-rays varied from 1.09-1.07, 1.23-1.17, and 1.27-1.19 for doses 50-200 cGy, respectively. For EBT3 film the relative sensitivity was within 3% of unity for all three monochromatic x-ray beams.Conclusions: EBT and EBT2 film sensitivity showed strong energy dependence over an energy range of 25 keV-4 MV, although this dependence becomes weaker for larger doses. EBT3 film shows weak energy dependence, indicating that it would be a better dosimeter for kV x-ray beams where beam hardening effects can result in large changes in the effective energy.

Concepts: Electron, Ionizing radiation, Light, Electromagnetic radiation, Medical imaging, Particle accelerator, Dose-response relationship, Photographic film


Exposure to nature provides a wide range of health benefits. A significant proportion of these are delivered close to home, because this offers an immediate and easily accessible opportunity for people to experience nature. However, there is limited information to guide recommendations on its management and appropriate use. We apply a nature dose-response framework to quantify the simultaneous association between exposure to nearby nature and multiple health benefits. We surveyed ca. 1000 respondents in Southern England, UK, to determine relationships between (a) nature dose type, that is the frequency and duration (time spent in private green space) and intensity (quantity of neighbourhood vegetation cover) of nature exposure and (b) health outcomes, including mental, physical and social health, physical behaviour and nature orientation. We then modelled dose-response relationships between dose type and self-reported depression. We demonstrate positive relationships between nature dose and mental and social health, increased physical activity and nature orientation. Dose-response analysis showed that lower levels of depression were associated with minimum thresholds of weekly nature dose. Nearby nature is associated with quantifiable health benefits, with potential for lowering the human and financial costs of ill health. Dose-response analysis has the potential to guide minimum and optimum recommendations on the management and use of nearby nature for preventative healthcare.

Concepts: Time, Health care, Health economics, Health insurance, Illness, Dose, Vegetation, Dose-response relationship