ABOUT THE COLLECTION

The Faculty/ Researcher Works collection focuses on research, scholarship, and creative works, as well as materials that primarily reflect the intellectual environment of the Temple University campus.

Collections in this community

Recent Submissions

  • Prospects for quarkonium studies at the high-luminosity LHC

    Chapon, Emilien; d'Enterria, David; Ducloue, Bertrand; Echevarria, Miguel G.; Gossiaux, Pol-Bernard; Kartvelishvili, Vato; Kasemets, Tomas; Lansberg, Jean-Philippe; McNulty, Ronan; Price, Darren D.; Shao, Hua-Sheng; Van Hulse, Charlotee; Winn, Michael; Adam, Jaroslav; An, Liupan; Arrebato Villar, Denys Yen; Bhattacharya, Shohini; Celiberto, Francesco G.; Cheshkov, Cvetan; D'Alesio, Umberto; da Silva, Cesar; Ferreiro, Elena G.; Flett, Chris A.; Flore, Carlo; Garzelli, Maria Vittoria; Gaunt, Jonathan; He, Jibo; Makris, Yiannis; Marqut, Cyrille; Massacrier, Laure; Mehen, Thomas; Mezrag, Cedric; Micheletti, Luca; Nagar, Riccardo; Nefedov, Maxim A.; Ozcelik, Melih A.; Paul, Biswarup; Pisano, Cristian; Qiu, Jian-Wei; Rajesh, Sangem; Rinaldi, Matteo; Scarpa, Florent; Smith, Maddie; Taels, Pieter; Tee, Amy; Teryaev, Oleg; Vitev, Ivan; Watanabe, Kazuhiro; Yamanake, Nodoka; Yao, Xiaojun; Zhang, Yanxi (2021-11-29)
    Prospects for quarkonium-production studies accessible during the upcoming high-luminosity phases of the CERN Large Hadron Collider operation after 2021 are reviewed. Current experimental and theoretical open issues in the field are assessed together with the potential for future studies in quarkonium-related physics. This will be possible through the exploitation of the huge data samples to be collected in proton–proton, proton–nucleus and nucleus–nucleus collisions, both in the collider and fixed-target modes. Such investigations include, among others, those of: (i) and produced in association with other hard particles; (ii) and down to small transverse momenta; (iii) the constraints brought in by quarkonia on gluon PDFs, nuclear PDFs, TMDs, GPDs and GTMDs, as well as on the low- parton dynamics; (iv) the gluon Sivers effect in polarised-nucleon collisions; (v) the properties of the quark–gluon plasma produced in ultra-relativistic heavy-ion collisions and of collective partonic effects in general; and (vi) double and triple parton scatterings.
  • The effect of caregiver key opinion leaders on increasing caregiver demand for evidence-based practices to treat youth anxiety: protocol for a randomized control trial

    Crane, Margaret; Atkins, Marc S.; Becker, Sara J.; Purtle, Jonathan; Olino, Thomas; Kendall, Philip C.; Crane|0000-0002-1680-3364; Olino|0000-0001-5139-8571; Kendall|0000-0001-7034-6961 (2021-09-23)
    Background: Research has identified cognitive behavioral therapy with exposures (CBT) as an effective treatment for youth anxiety. Despite implementation efforts, few anxious youth receive CBT. Direct-to-consumer marketing offers a different approach to address the unmet need for youth receiving effective treatments. Involving a local caregiver key opinion leader in direct-to-consumer initiatives may be an effective strategy to increase caregiver demand for CBT. Research indicates that key opinion leaders improve health promotion campaigns, but key opinion leaders have not been studied in the context of increasing caregiver demand for evidence-based treatments. Method: Project CHAT (Caregivers Hearing about Anxiety Treatments) will test the role of key opinion leader participation in conducting outreach presentations to increase caregiver desire to seek CBT for their youth’s anxiety. Caregiver attendees (N = 180) will be cluster randomized by school to receive one of two different approaches for presentations on CBT for youth anxiety. Both approaches will involve community outreach presentations providing information on recognizing youth anxiety, strategies caregivers can use to decrease youth anxiety, and how to seek CBT for youth anxiety. The researcher-only condition will be co-facilitated by two researchers. In the key opinion leader condition, a caregiver key opinion leader from each local community will be involved in tailoring the content of the presentation to the context of the community, co-facilitating the presentation with a researcher, and endorsing strategies in the presentation that they have found to be helpful. In line with the theory of planned behavior, caregiver attendees will complete measures assessing their knowledge of, attitudes towards, perceived subjective norms about, and intention to seek CBT pre- and post-presentation; they will indicate whether they sought CBT for their youth at 3-month follow-up. Results will be analyzed using a mixed method approach to assess the effectiveness of a key opinion leader to increase caregiver demand for CBT. Discussion: This study will be the first to examine the potential of key opinion leaders to increase caregiver demand for CBT. If proven effective, the use of key opinion leaders could serve as a scalable dissemination strategy to increase the reach of evidence-based treatments.
  • An expanding HIV epidemic among older adults in Ukraine: Implications for patient-centered care

    Rozanova, Julia; Zeziulin, Oleksandr; Rich, Katherine M.; Altice, Frederick L.; Kiriazova, Tetiana; Zaviryukha, Irina; Sosidko, Tetiana; Gulati, Komal; Carroll, Constance; Shenoi, Sheela V. (2021-09-30)
    Introduction: The Eastern Europe and Central Asian (EECA) region has the highest increase in HIV incidence and mortality globally, with suboptimal HIV treatment and prevention. All EECA countries (except Russia) are low and middle-income (LMIC). While LMIC are home to 80% of all older people living with HIV (OPWH), defined as ≥50 years, extant literature observed that newly diagnosed OPWH represent the lowest proportion in EECA relative to all other global regions. We examined HIV diagnoses in OPWH in Ukraine, a country emblematic of the EECA region. Methods: We analysed incident HIV diagnoses from 2015–2018 and mortality trends from 2016–2018 for three age groups: 1) 15–24 years; 2) 25–49 years; and 3) ≥50 years. AIDS was defined as CD4<200cells/mL. Mortality was defined as deaths per 1000 patients newly diagnosed with HIV within the same calendar year. Mortality rates were calculated for 2016, 2017, and 2018, compared to age-matched general population rates, and all-cause standardized mortality ratios (SMRs) were calculated. Results: From 2015–2018, the proportion of OPWH annually diagnosed with HIV increased from 11.2% to 14.9% (p<0.01). At the time of diagnosis, OPWH were also significantly (p<0.01) more likely to have AIDS (43.8%) than those aged 25–49 years (29.5%) and 15–24 years (13.3%). Newly diagnosed OPWH had the same-year mortality ranging from 3 to 8 times higher than age-matched groups in the Ukrainian general population. Conclusions: These findings suggest a reassessment of HIV testing, prevention and treatment strategies in Ukraine is needed to bring OPWH into focus. OPWH are more likely to present with late-stage HIV and have higher mortality rates. Re-designing testing practices is especially crucial since OPWH are absent from targeted testing programs and are increasingly diagnosed as they present with AIDS-defining symptoms. New strategies for linkage and treatment programs should reflect the distinct needs of this target population.
  • Procaspase-1 patrolled to the nucleus of proatherogenic lipid LPC-activated human aortic endothelial cells induces ROS promoter CYP1B1 and strong inflammation

    Center of Cardiovascular Research (Temple University); Center of Inflammation and Lung Research (Temple University) (2021-09-28)
    To determine the roles of nuclear localization of pro-caspase-1 in human aortic endothelial cells (HAECs) activated by proatherogenic lipid lysophosphatidylcholine (LPC), we examined cytosolic and nuclear localization of pro-caspase-1, identified nuclear export signal (NES) in pro-caspase-1 and sequenced RNAs. We made the following findings: 1) LPC increases nuclear localization of procaspase-1 in HAECs. 2) Nuclear pro-caspase-1 exports back to the cytosol, which is facilitated by a leptomycin B-inhibited mechanism. 3) Increased nuclear localization of pro-caspase-1 by a new NES peptide inhibitor upregulates inflammatory genes in oxidative stress and Th17 pathways; and SUMO activator N106 enhances nuclear localization of pro-caspase-1 and caspase-1 activation (p20) in the nucleus. 4) LPC plus caspase-1 enzymatic inhibitor upregulates inflammatory genes with hypercytokinemia/hyperchemokinemia and interferon pathways, suggesting a novel capsase-1 enzyme-independent inflammatory mechanism. 5) LPC in combination with NES inhibitor and caspase-1 inhibitor upregulate inflammatory gene expression that regulate Th17 activation, endotheli-1 signaling, p38-, and ERK- MAPK pathways. To examine two hallmarks of endothelial activation such as secretomes and membrane protein signaling, LPC plus NES inhibitor upregulate 57 canonical secretomic genes and 76 exosome secretomic genes, respectively, promoting four pathways including Th17, IL-17 promoted cytokines, interferon signaling and cholesterol biosynthesis. LPC with NES inhibitor also promote inflammation via upregulating ROS promoter CYP1B1 and 11 clusters of differentiation (CD) membrane protein pathways. Mechanistically, all the LPC plus NES inhibitor-induced genes are significantly downregulated in CYP1B1-deficient microarray, suggesting that nuclear caspase-1-induced CYP1B1 promotes strong inflammation. These transcriptomic results provide novel insights on the roles of nuclear caspase-1 in sensing DAMPs, inducing ROS promoter CYP1B1 and in regulating a large number of genes that mediate HAEC activation and inflammation. These findings will lead to future development of novel therapeutics for cardiovascular diseases (CVD), inflammations, infections, transplantation, autoimmune disease and cancers. (total words: 284).
  • Selective inhibition of PfATP6 by artemisinins and identification of new classes of inhibitors after expression in yeast

    Institute for Computational Molecular Science (Temple University) (2021-10-28)
    Treatment failures with artemisinin combination therapies (ACTs) threaten global efforts to eradicate malaria. They highlight the importance of identifying drug targets and new inhibitors and of studying how existing antimalarial classes work. Herein we report the successful development of an heterologous expression-based compound screening tool. Validated drug target P. falciparum calcium ATPase6 (PfATP6) and a mammalian ortholog (SERCA1a) were functionally expressed in yeast providing a robust, sensitive, and specific screening tool. Whole-cell and in vitro assays consistently demonstrated inhibition and labelling of PfATP6 by artemisinins. Mutations in PfATP6 resulted in fitness costs that were ameliorated in the presence of artemisinin derivatives when studied in the yeast model. As previously hypothesised, PfATP6 is a target of artemisinins. Mammalian SERCA1a can be mutated to become more susceptible to artemisinins. The inexpensive, low technology yeast screening platform has identified unrelated classes of druggable PfATP6 inhibitors. Resistance to artemisinins may depend on mechanisms that can concomitantly address multi-targeting by artemisinins and fitness costs of mutations that reduce artemisinin susceptibility.
  • Proteomic and Biological Analysis of the Effects of Metformin Senomorphics on the Mesenchymal Stromal Cells

    Center for Biotechnology, Sbarro Institute for Cancer Research and Molecular Medicine (Temple University) (2021-10-05)
    Senotherapeutics are new drugs that can modulate senescence phenomena within tissues and reduce the onset of age-related pathologies. Senotherapeutics are divided into senolytics and senomorphics. The senolytics selectively kill senescent cells, while the senomorphics delay or block the onset of senescence. Metformin has been used to treat diabetes for several decades. Recently, it has been proposed that metformin may have anti-aging properties as it prevents DNA damage and inflammation. We evaluated the senomorphic effect of 6 weeks of therapeutic metformin treatment on the biology of human adipose mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs). The study was combined with a proteome analysis of changes occurring in MSCs’ intracellular and secretome protein composition in order to identify molecular pathways associated with the observed biological phenomena. The metformin reduced the replicative senescence and cell death phenomena associated with prolonged in vitro cultivation. The continuous metformin supplementation delayed and/or reduced the impairment of MSC functions as evidenced by the presence of three specific pathways in metformin-treated samples: 1) the alpha-adrenergic signaling, which contributes to regulation of MSCs physiological secretory activity, 2) the signaling pathway associated with MSCs detoxification activity, and 3) the aspartate degradation pathway for optimal energy production. The senomorphic function of metformin seemed related to its reactive oxygen species (ROS) scavenging activity. In metformin-treated samples, the CEBPA, TP53 and USF1 transcription factors appeared to be involved in the regulation of several factors (SOD1, SOD2, CAT, GLRX, GSTP1) blocking ROS.
  • Celebrating Indigenous National Cinemas and Narrative Sovereignty through the Creation of Kin Theory, an Indigenous Media Makers Database

    Hurtubise, Michelle; Hurtubise|0000-0002-3467-5132 (2021-10-01)
    Indigenous peoples have been misrepresented and underrepresented in media since the dawn of cinema, but they have never stopped telling their own stories and enacting agency. It is past time to recognize them on their own terms. To facilitate that, academics, activists, and industry partners can fund, hire, teach, and share more Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC) led projects. The uniqueness of 2020 with COVID-19, Black Lives Matter and human rights movements, and the move online by many academics and organizations have deepened conversations about systemic inequities, such as those in media industries. To address the often-heard film industry excuse, “I don’t know anyone of color to hire,” the Nia Tero Foundation has created Kin Theory, an Indigenous media makers database, that is having a dynamic, year-long launch in 2021. Nia Tero is a global nonprofit that uplifts Indigenous peoples in their land stewardship through policy and storytelling. Kin Theory is being developed to be global in scope, celebrating the multiplicity of Indigenous national cinemas and the power of narrative sovereignty. This paper demonstrates ways in which Kin Theory is striving to Indigenize the film industry through collaborations, coalition building, and co-liberation joy. The projected outcome of this study is to highlight how Kin Theory has the potential to increase access to Indigenous media makers, strengthens relationships, makes media works more visible, and increases support for BIPOC-led projects. This paper discusses the impacts of media misrepresentations and erasure, the foundations of Kin Theory, and introduces the potential for Indigenous national cinemas and narrative sovereignty. By reporting on the launch of Kin Theory at the Big Sky Documentary Film Festival, strategies for Indigenizing the film industry are also discussed. Throughout it is argued that decolonization is not a salvage project, it is an act of creation, and diverse industry leaders are offering new systems that support this thriving revitalization.
  • Risk stratification with video capsule endoscopy leads to fewer hospital admissions in emergency department patients with low-risk to moderate-risk upper gastrointestinal bleed: A multicenter clinical trial

    Meltzer, Andrew C.; Limkakeng Jr., Alexander T.; GENTILE, NINA; Freeman, Jincong Q.; Hall, Nicole C.; Montano Vargas, Nataly; Fleischer, David E.; Malik, Zubair; Kallus, Samuel J.; Borum, Marie L.; Ma, Yan; Kumar, Anita B.; Gentile|0000-0002-1222-5966; Malik|0000-0002-7811-170X (2021-10-25)
    Objective: In US emergency departments (EDs), the physician has limited ability to evaluate for common and serious conditions of the gastrointestinal (GI) mucosa such as a bleeding peptic ulcer. Although many bleeding lesions are self-limited, the majority of these patients require emergency hospitalization for upper endoscopy (EGD). We conducted a clinical trial to determine if ED risk stratification with video capsule endoscopy (VCE) reduces hospitalization rates for low-risk to moderate-risk patients with suspected upper GI bleeding. Methods: We conducted a randomized controlled trial at 3 urban academic EDs. Inclusion criteria included signs of upper GI bleeding and a Glasgow Blatchford score <6. Patients were randomly assigned to 1 of the following 2 treatment arms: (1) an experimental arm that included VCE risk stratification and brief ED observation versus (2) a standard care arm that included admission for inpatient EGD. The primary outcome was hospital admission. Patients were followed for 7 and 30 days to assess for rebleeding events and revisits to the hospital. Results: The trial was terminated early as a result of low accrual. The trial was also terminated early because of a need to repurpose all staff to respond to the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic. A total of 24 patients were enrolled in the study. In the experimental group, 2/11 (18.2%) patients were admitted to the hospital, and in the standard of care group, 10/13 (76.9%) patients were admitted to the hospital (P = 0.012). There was no difference in safety on day 7 and day 30 after the index ED visit.Conclusions: VCE is a potential strategy to decrease admissions for upper GI bleeding, though further study with a larger cohort is required before this approach can be recommended.
  • dynaPhenoM: Dynamic Phenotype Modeling from Longitudinal Patient Records Using Machine Learning

    Zhang, Hao; Zang, Chengxi; Xu, Jie; Zhang, Hansi; Fouladvand, Sajjad; Havaldar, Shreyas; Su, Chang; Cheng, Feixiong; Glicksberg, Benjamin S.; Chen, Jin; Bian, Jiang; Wang, Fei; Su|0000-0003-4019-6389 (2021-11-02)
    Identification of clinically meaningful subphenotypes of disease progression can facilitate better understanding of disease heterogeneity and underlying pathophysiology. We propose a machine learning algorithm, termed dynaPhenoM, to achieve this goal based on longitudinal patient records such as electronic health records (EHR) or insurance claims. Specifically, dynaPhenoM first learns a set of coherent clinical topics from the events across different patient visits within the records along with the topic transition probability matrix, and then employs the time-aware latent class analysis (T-LCA) procedure to characterize each subphenotype as the evolution of these learned topics over time. The patients in the same subphenotype have similar such topic evolution patterns. We demonstrate the effectiveness and robustness of dynaPhenoM on the case of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) to Alzheimer’s disease (AD) progression on three patient cohorts, and five informative subphenotypes were identified which suggest the different clinical trajectories for disease progression from MCI to AD.
  • The role of exercise on peripheral nerve regeneration: from animal model to clinical application

    Sbarro Institute for Cancer Research and Molecular Medicine (Temple University) (2021-11-01)
    Peripheral nerve injury is a complex condition with a variety of signs and symptoms depending on the severity and nerves involved. Peripheral nerve damage may lead to sensory and motor functions deficits and even lifelong disability, causing important socioeconomic costs worldwide. Despite the increase in knowledge of the mechanisms of injury and regeneration, a full functional recovery is still unsatisfying in the majority of patients. It is well known that exercise promotes physical and psychological well-being, by ameliorating general health. In the last years, there has been a growing interest in evaluating the effects of exercise on the peripheral nervous system. Experimental works with rodent models showed the potential utility of exercise following peripheral nerve injuries, as evinced by increasing axon regeneration, muscle reinnervation, better recovery of strength, muscle mass and higher expression of neurotrophic factors. Moreover, clinical evidence showed positive trends in favour of physical therapy following peripheral nerve damage based on the improvement of range of motion (ROM), muscle power grade and pain. After a brief overview of peripheral nerve anatomy and the different types of nerve injury, the present review aims to summarize the impact of exercise on peripheral nerve regeneration. Some clinical evidence regarding the effect of exercise after peripheral nerve injury will also be discussed.
  • News Events and Their Relationship With US Vape Sales: An Interrupted Time Series Analysis

    Janmohamed, Kamila; Sakai, Shinpei Nakamura; Soale, Abdul-Nasah; Forastiere, Laura; Kumar, Navin; Soale|0000-0003-2093-7645 (2022-03-10)
    Objective: News coverage around vaping-related events may have furthered misconceptions regarding the relative harms of vapes. Such information may influence the decisions of individuals who smoke, around switching to vaping, potentially affecting the overall tobacco mortality burden. Thus, it is prudent to study how news events (e.g., 2019 vaping illness epidemic) are associated with vape sales in the United States, to possibly reduce the tobacco mortality burden. Methods: We used weekly retail sales data for e-cigarettes (30 December 2018 - 28 December 2019) from the US retail scanner data compiled by the Nielsen Company. We used an interrupted time series design with segmented regression analysis to determine immediate and longer-term impacts of individual news events (e.g. Trump administration's planned ban on flavored vaping products) on vape sales, controlling for pre-existing trends. Results: Unexpectedly, we noted a statistically significant positive relationship between vape sales and the CDC announcing an investigation into vaping-related illnesses (Change: 6.59%, Estimate: 0.064; 95% CI: 0.036, 0.092; P<0.001). We also observed a similar positive association between vape sales and the CDC's announcement on the link between Vitamin E acetate and EVALI (Change: 2.93%, Estimate: 0.029; 95% CI: 0.003, 0.055; P<0.05). There was a steep decline in sales after these events. Conclusions: News events are associated with US vape sales. Findings have implications for the management of risk perceptions around vaping to improve health outcomes of tobacco users. Information-based policy instruments can be applied to balance the effects of news events that may influence vape sales.
  • Targeting DDX3X Helicase Activity with BA103 Shows Promising Therapeutic Effects in Preclinical Glioblastoma Models

    Center for Biotechnology, Sbarro Institute for Cancer Research and Molecular Medicine (Temple University) (2021-11-07)
    DDX3X is an ATP-dependent RNA helicase that has recently attracted interest for its involvement in viral replication and oncogenic progression. Starting from hit compounds previously identified by our group, we have designed and synthesized a new series of DDX3X inhibitors that effectively blocked its helicase activity. These new compounds were able to inhibit the proliferation of cell lines from different cancer types, also in DDX3X low-expressing cancer cell lines. According to the absorption, distribution, metabolism, elimination properties, and antitumoral activity, compound BA103 was chosen to be further investigated in glioblastoma models. BA103 determined a significant reduction in the proliferation and migration of U87 and U251 cells, downregulating the oncogenic protein β-catenin. An in vivo evaluation demonstrated that BA103 was able to reach the brain and reduce the tumor growth in xenograft and orthotopic models without evident side effects. This study represents the first demonstration that DDX3X-targeted small molecules are feasible and promising drugs also in glioblastoma.
  • Assessing Treatment Success or Failure as an Outcome in Randomised Clinical Trials of COPD Exacerbations. A Meta-Epidemiological Study

    DECODE-NET (2021-12-05)
    A recently published ERS core outcome set recommends that all trials of COPD exacerbation management should assess the treatment success (or “cure” of the exacerbation), defined as a dichotomous measure of the overall outcome of an exacerbation. This methodological systematic review describes and compares the instruments that were used to assess treatment success or failure in 54 such RCTs, published between 2006–2020. Twenty-three RCTs used composite measures consisting of several undesirable outcomes of an exacerbation, together defining an overall unfavourable outcome, to define treatment failure. Thirty-four RCTs used descriptive instruments that used qualitative or semi-quantitative descriptions to define cure, marked improvement, improvement of the exacerbation, or treatment failure. Treatment success and failure rates among patients receiving guidelines-directed treatments at different settings and timepoints are described and could be used to inform power calculations in future trials. Descriptive instruments appeared more sensitive to treatment effects compared to composite instruments. Further methodological studies are needed to optimise the evaluation of treatment success/failure. In the meantime, based on the findings of this systematic review, the ERS core outcome set recommends that cure should be defined as sufficient improvement of the signs and symptoms of the exacerbation such that no additional systemic treatments are required.
  • Development and Preliminary Feasibility of iByte4Health: A Mobile Health (mHealth) Pediatric Obesity Prevention Intervention to Engage Parents with Low-Income of Children 2–9 Years

    Center for Obesity Research and Education (Temple University) (2021-11-25)
    This research describes the development and preliminary feasibility of iByte4Health, a mobile health (mHealth) obesity prevention intervention designed for parents with a low-income of children 2–9 years of age. Study 1 (n = 36) presents findings from formative work used to develop the program. Study 2 (n = 23) presents a 2-week proof-of-concept feasibility testing of iByte4Health, including participant acceptability, utilization, and engagement. Based on Study 1, iByte4Health was designed as a text-messaging program, targeting barriers and challenges identified by parents of young children for six key obesity prevention behaviors: (1) snacking; (2) physical activity; (3) sleep; (4) sugary drinks; (5) fruit and vegetable intake; and (6) healthy cooking at home. In Study 2, participants demonstrated high program retention (95.7% at follow-up) and acceptability (90.9% reported liking or loving the program). Users were engaged with the program; 87.0% responded to at least one self-monitoring text message; 90.9% found the videos and linked content to be helpful or extremely helpful; 86.4% found text messages helpful or extremely helpful. iByte4Health is a community-informed, evidenced-based program that holds promise for obesity prevention efforts, especially for those families at the increased risk of obesity and related disparities. Future work is warranted to test the efficacy of the program.
  • Understanding Child-Directed Speech Around Book Reading in Toddler Classrooms: Evidence From Early Head Start Programs

    Hindman, Annemarie H.; Farrow, Jean M.; Anderson, Kate; Wasik, Barbara A.; Snyder, Patricia A.; Hindman|0000-0001-5800-0191 (2021-12-09)
    Child-directed speech (CDS), which can help children learn new words, has been rigorously studied among infants and parents in home settings. Yet, far less is known about the CDS that teachers use in classrooms with toddlers and children’s responses, an important question because many toddlers, particularly in high-need communities, attend group-care settings. This exploratory study examines the linguistic environment during teacher-led book readings in American Early Head Start classrooms serving 2-year-olds from households in poverty. Seven teachers in four classrooms were trained to emphasize target words while reading story and informational books. We first analyzed the nature and quality of their book readings from a macro-level, exploring global instructional quality [Classroom Assessment Scoring System (CLASS)] and linguistic complexity [i.e., diversity of vocabulary (D) and sophistication of syntax (MLU-w)], and we also examined micro-level teacher-child talk strategies and use of target words. Compared to prior research, these classrooms had similar global quality and syntactic complexity, although less lexical diversity. Exploratory results also revealed three distinct teacher talk patterns—teachers who emphasized (1) comments, (2) questions, and (3) a balance of the two. Question-focused teachers had more adult and child talk during reading, as well as more repetitions of target words, and stronger CLASS Engaged Support for Learning. However, comment-focused teachers used more diverse vocabulary and had stronger CLASS Emotional and Behavioral Support. Results illuminate the nature and quality of CDS in toddler classrooms, particularly in the context of an intervention emphasizing target vocabulary words, and highlight applications for professional development and questions for further research.
  • Evaluating the effectiveness of problem-solving courts at preventing fatal and non-fatal opioid events: preliminary findings from Indiana

    Van Nostrand, Elizabeth; Johnston, Alyssa; Albert, Steven M.; Brown, Andre L.; Buchanich, Jeanine M.; Ray, Brad; Roberts, Mark S.; Johnston|0000-0001-5779-847X (2021-12-15)
    Background: Fatal and non-fatal events associated with drug misuse are skyrocketing in most United States jurisdictions, including Indiana. Historically, the role of the judiciary is to arrest, impose sanctions and protect society from harm. Adults arrested for drug abuse in Indiana can be sentenced to 1 of 17 correctional facilities. As an alternative, they may be eligible to participate in a problem-solving court (PSC) programme that refers individuals to treatment as a pretrial diversionary strategy. The aim of the study is to determine which interventions offered by PSCs and correctional facilities impact morbidity and mortality. The study began in 2019 and will end in 2023; therefore, the results in this manuscript are preliminary. Methods: The study cohort included two populations arrested for drug misuse: (1) adults sentenced to Indianan correctional facilities (1 January 2018 to 30 June 2021) and (2) adults participating in an Indiana PSC programme (1 January 2018 to 30 June 2021). The study used a mixed-methods design that integrated qualitative interviews of deputy wardens, PSC team members and service providers with the following quantitative datasets: sentencing information, emergency department visits, inpatient hospitalization admissions, prescription drug monitoring programme data and death records. The individuals will be followed at 2-week, 4-week, 6-month and 1-year intervals post-release. Difference-in-difference and time-toevent analyses will identify impactful interventions. A model will be created to show the effect of impactful interventions in Indiana counties that do not have PSCs. Results: Findings are preliminary. There is variability amongst correctional facilities regarding programme eligibility, provided services and provision of medication-assisted treatment. All correctional facilities were severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Conclusion: It is anticipated that the adoption of impactful interventions will lower opioid-related morbidity and mortality rates.
  • Epithelioid Trophoblastic Tumour: A Case with Genetic Linkage to a Child Born over Seventeen Years Prior, Successfully Treated with Surgery and Pembrolizumab

    Center for Biotechnology, Sbarro Institute for Cancer Research and Molecular Medicine (Temple University) (2021-12-13)
    Epithelioid trophoblastic tumours are rare neoplasms showing differentiation towards the chorion leave-type intermediate cytotrophoblast, with only a handful of cases being reported in the literature. These tumours are slow-growing and are typically confined to the uterus for extended periods of time. While the pathogenesis is unclear, they are thought to arise from a remnant intermediate trophoblast originating from prior normal pregnancies or, less frequently, gestational trophoblastic tumours. A protracted time period between the gestational event and tumour development is typical. This case describes a 49-year-old previously healthy female who presented with a completely asymptomatic uterine mass, discovered incidentally during a routine gynaecological assessment. The pathological analysis of the hysterectomy specimen confirmed an epithelioid trophoblastic tumour, involving the uterus and cervix. This is a rare gynaecological tumour. A comparative short tandem repeat analysis revealed genetic similarities to a previous healthy gestation seventeen years prior. She was successful treated with adjuvant pembrolizumab, with no evidence of disease recurrence to date.
  • A Novel Humanized Anti-Interleukin-6 Antibody HZ0408b With Anti-Rheumatoid Arthritis Therapeutic Potential

    Center for Metabolic Disease Research (Temple University) (2022-01-19)
    Interleukin-6 (IL-6), a pleiotropic cytokine that regulates immune responses and inflammatory reactions, plays a pivotal role in the development of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Blockade of IL-6 signaling with the monoclonal antibody (mAb) represents an important advancement in RA treatment. Although two IL-6 receptor antibodies are already available in the clinic, there is no mAb specifically targeting the human IL-6 to block IL-6 signaling for RA treatment. In this study, we have developed a novel humanized anti-IL-6 mAb HZ-0408b with potent binding and neutralizing activity to human IL-6. We demonstrated that HZ-0408b has a high species specificity and low cross-reactivity. Moreover, HZ-0408b showed a more potent inhibitory effect on IL-6 signaling than Siltuximab, an FDA-approved anti-IL-6 chimeric mAb. HZ-0408b is comparable to Olokizumab, a humanized mAb against IL-6 that is already in phase III studies. We observed that HZ-0408b is well tolerated at doses that can achieve therapeutic serum levels in cynomolgus monkey. Most importantly, we proved that HZ-0408b treatment significantly ameliorated joint swelling after the onset of arthritis and dramatically reduced plasma C-reactive protein (CRP) levels in a monkey collagen-induced arthritis (CIA) model. Collectively, our findings using non-human primates indicate that humanized anti-IL-6 mAb HZ-0408b has excellent safety and efficacy profiles for RA therapy.
  • Electronic nicotine delivery systems exhibit reduced bronchial epithelial cells toxicity compared to cigarette: the Replica Project

    Sbarro Institute for Cancer Research and Molecular Medicine (Temple University); Replica Project Group (2021-12-17)
    Electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS) may reduce health risks associated with chronic exposure to smoke and their potential benefits have been the matter of intense scientific debate. We aimed to replicate three published studies on cytotoxic and inflammatory effects of cigarette smoke and ENDS aerosol in an independent multi-center ring study. We aimed to establish the reliability of results and the robustness of conclusions by replicating the authors’ experimental protocols and further validating them with different techniques. Human bronchial epithelial cells (NCI-H292) were exposed to cigarette whole smoke and vapor phase and to aerosol from ENDS. We also assessed the inflammatory cytokines interleukin-6 and interleukin-8 and the remodeling mediator matrix metalloproteinase-1. We replicated cell viability results and confirmed that almost 80% of cytotoxic effects are due to volatile compounds in the vapor phase of smoke. Our findings substantiated the reduced cytotoxic effects of ENDS aerosol. However, our data on inflammatory and remodeling activity triggered by smoke differed significantly from those in the original reports. Taken together, independent data from multiple laboratories clearly demonstrated the reduced toxicity of ENDS products compared to cigarettes.
  • Barriers and Facilitators to Acceptability of the Female Condom in Low- and Middle-Income Countries: A Systematic Review

    Fasehun, Luther-King; Lewinger, Sarah; Fasehun, Oyinlola; Brooks, Mohamad; Fasehun|0000-0002-8798-5433 (2022-03-10)
    Background: Sexually transmitted infections, including HIV, remain a significant public health challenge for low- and middle-income countries, and about 111 million unintended pregnancies occur in these countries annually. The female condom is the only commonly available method that affords women and girls more control in protecting themselves from sexually transmitted infections, as well as unintended pregnancies. Yet, the female condom only accounts for 1.6% of total condom distribution worldwide. Objectives: To help fill the gaps in an understanding of what works for improved acceptability and use of the female condom in low- and middle-income countries, we conducted a systematic review of the literature that focuses on acceptability of the FC, as examined in the specific settings of intervention programs or research in low- and middle-income countries. Methods: We conducted a preliminary search of two purposively selected databases (PubMed and POPLINE) for English language articles from 2009 to 2019 with the keyword “female condom.” PubMed yielded 145 articles, while POPLINE yielded 164 articles. Included studies involve a purposive, interventional deployment of the female condom; have occurred in a low- or middle-income country, as defined by the World Bank; and have focused on acceptability of the female condom. Upon review of duplicates and abstracts, a total of 14 articles made the final selection. Findings: The included articles represent seven different countries: the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, China, Malaysia, Nicaragua, South Africa, and Uganda. We identified four key barriers to FC acceptability, including partner acceptability, functionality, aesthetics, and access. We identified four key facilitators to FC acceptability, including repeated use, supportive attitudes, protection confidence, and reproductive control. Conclusion: Effective promotion and uptake of the female condom in low- and middle-income countries can be realized if novel strategies and approaches are implemented to tackle persistent barriers to acceptability.

View more