• A call to action: Documenting and sharing solutions and adaptations in sexual, reproductive, maternal and newborn health care provision during the COVID-19 pandemic

      Benova, Lenka; Sarkar, Nandini D. P.; Fasehun, Luther-King; Semaan, Aline; Affun-Adegbulu, Clara; 0000-0002-8798-5433 (2020-10-19)
    • A Clearer Picture: Journalistic identity practices in words and images on Twitter

      Lough, Kyser; Molyneux, Logan; Holton, Avery E.; 0000-0001-7382-3065 (2017-10-27)
      As journalists continue integrating social media into their professional work, they wrestle with ways to best represent themselves, their organizations, and their profession. Several recent studies have examined this trend in terms of branding, raising important questions about the changing ways in which journalists present themselves and how these changes may indicate shifts in their personal and professional identities. This study combines a visual content analysis of the images journalists use in their Twitter profiles with analyses of their profile text and tweets to examine how journalists present themselves online with an eye toward individual and organizational branding. Findings indicate journalists choose a branding approach and apply it consistently across their profiles, with most profiles consisting of a professional headshot while notably lacking organizational identifiers such as logos. Journalists also tend to lean toward professional rather than personal images in their profile and header photographs, indicating a possible predilection for professional identity over personal on social media.
    • Aggregation, Clickbait and Their Effect on Perceptions of Journalistic Credibility and Quality

      Molyneux, Logan; Coddington, Mark; 0000-0001-7382-3065 (2019-06-16)
      Many journalists and industry observers lament that aggregating news underneath sensational headlines will erode credibility and turn off readers. While some scholarly work has studied journalists’ perspectives of this practice, little has been done to understand what audiences think of aggregation and clickbait. This study uses published original and aggregated news articles as stimuli in two online experiments to test readers’ perceptions of news aggregation and clickbait. Aggregation itself has little effect on perceptions of credibility and quality; instead, writing proficiency is more closely linked to these perceptions. Results also suggest clickbait headlines may lower perceptions of credibility and quality.
    • Are environmental pollution and biodiversity levels associated to the spread and mortality of COVID-19? A four-month global analysis

      Fernández, Daniel; Giné-Vázquez, Ialago; Liu, Ivy; Yucel, Recai; Nai Ruscone, Marta; Morena, Marianthi; García, Víctor Gerardo; Haro, Josep Maria; Pan, William; Tyrovolas, Stefanos (2020-12-21)
      On March 12th, 2020, the WHO declared COVID-19 as a pandemic. The collective impact of environmental and ecosystem factors, as well as biodiversity, on the spread of COVID-19 and its mortality evolution remain empirically unknown, particularly in regions with a wide ecosystem range. The aim of our study is to assess how those factors impact on the COVID-19 spread and mortality by country. This study compiled a global database merging WHO daily case reports with other publicly available measures from January 21st to May 18th, 2020. We applied spatio-temporal models to identify the influence of biodiversity, temperature, and precipitation and fitted generalized linear mixed models to identify the effects of environmental variables. Additionally, we used count time series to characterize the association between COVID-19 spread and air quality factors. All analyses were adjusted by social demographic, country-income level, and government policy intervention confounders, among 160 countries, globally. Our results reveal a statistically meaningful association between COVID-19 infection and several factors of interest at country and city levels such as the national biodiversity index, air quality, and pollutants elements (PM10, PM2.5, and O3). Particularly, there is a significant relationship of loss of biodiversity, high level of air pollutants, and diminished air quality with COVID-19 infection spread and mortality. Our findings provide an empirical foundation for future studies on the relationship between air quality variables, a country’s biodiversity, and COVID-19 transmission and mortality. The relationships measured in this study can be valuable when governments plan environmental and health policies, as alternative strategy to respond to new COVID-19 outbreaks and prevent future crises.
    • Avoiding panic during pandemics: COVID-19 and tourism-related businesses

      Hu, Haisheng; Yang, Yang; Zhang, Jin (2021-03-14)
      The COVID-19 pandemic has brought devastating impacts of an unprecedented scale to tourism-related businesses due to governments instituting mobility restrictions and business closures worldwide. In this research note, we present the results of a survey involving 1,212 tourism-related businesses in Jiangxi province, China, in late February 2020. The survey covered various topics, including (1) self-evaluated effects of COVID-19, (2) business responses, (3) social responsibility behavior, and (4) anticipated government policies. Findings from mixed-effects (ordered) logit models revealed that small-sized businesses appear particularly vulnerable to the pandemic. Social responsibility behavior is determined by business size, local pandemic circumstances, and local tourism dependence. Different businesses favor distinct government aid policies. Based on estimation results from our econometric models, we plotted a policy positioning matrix to identify appropriate policy measures for diverse businesses.
    • Body Image and Quality of Life in Adolescents With Craniofacial Conditions

      Crerand, Canice E.; Sarwer, David; Kazak, Anne E.; Clarke, Alexandra; Rumsey, Nichola; 0000-0003-1033-5528 (2016-01-11)
      Objective: To evaluate body image in adolescents with and without craniofacial conditions and to examine relationships between body image and quality of life. Design: Case-control design. Setting: A pediatric hospital's craniofacial center and primary care practices. Participants: Seventy adolescents with visible craniofacial conditions and a demographically matched sample of 42 adolescents without craniofacial conditions. Main Outcome Measure: Adolescents completed measures of quality of life and body image including satisfaction with weight, facial and overall appearance, investment in appearance (importance of appearance to self-worth), and body image disturbance (appearance-related distress and impairment in functioning). Results: Adolescents with craniofacial conditions reported lower appearance investment (P < .001) and were more likely to report concerns about facial features (P < .02) compared with nonaffected youth. Females in both groups reported greater investment in appearance, greater body image disturbance, and lower weight satisfaction compared with males (P < .01). Within both groups, greater body image disturbance was associated with lower quality of life (P < .01). The two groups did not differ significantly on measures of quality of life, body image disturbance, or satisfaction with appearance. Conclusions: Body image and quality of life in adolescents with craniofacial conditions are similar to nonaffected youth. Relationships between body image and quality of life emphasize that appearance perceptions are important to adolescents’ well-being regardless of whether they have a facial disfigurement. Investment in one's appearance may explain variations in body image satisfaction and serve as an intervention target, particularly for females.
    • Branding (Health) Journalism: Perceptions, practices, and emerging norms

      Molyneux, Logan; Holton, Avery E.; 0000-0001-7382-3065 (2014-04-30)
      Observational studies of journalists on social media platforms suggest that journalists are beginning to develop personal brands using social media. Similar studies suggest that journalists covering specialty areas such as health are more likely to experiment with and adopt new forms of practice that break with the traditional tenets of journalism. Through interviews with such journalists, this study explores the perceptions, practices, and drivers of personal branding among journalists. Findings indicate journalists are squarely focused on branding at the individual level (rather than branding the organizations they work for). Journalists cite technological and cultural changes in the profession as giving rise to personal branding. They also describe the tension they feel between their obligation to uphold the traditional tenets of journalism and their perceived need to incorporate more branding into their practice, especially on social media platforms. The findings indicate that journalists may be changing the fundamental elements of branding in at least one way, exchanging the differentiation between themselves and their content for the mutual sharing and co-creation of content with their colleagues and audience.
    • Cellular mechanisms underlying neurological/neuropsychiatric manifestations of COVID‐19

      Center for Metabolic Disease Research (Temple University) (2020-12-10)
      Patients with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus‐2 (SARS‐CoV‐2) infection manifest mainly respiratory symptoms. However, clinical observations frequently identified neurological symptoms and neuropsychiatric disorders related to COVID‐19 (Neuro‐SARS2). Accumulated robust evidence indicates that Neuro‐SARS2 may play an important role in aggravating the disease severity and mortality. Understanding the neuropathogenesis and cellular mechanisms underlying Neuro‐SARS2 is crucial for both basic research and clinical practice to establish effective strategies for early detection/diagnosis, prevention, and treatment. In this review, we comprehensively examine current evidence of SARS‐CoV‐2 infection in various neural cells including neurons, microglia/macrophages, astrocytes, pericytes/endothelial cells, ependymocytes/choroid epithelial cells, and neural stem/progenitor cells. Although significant progress has been made in studying Neuro‐SARS2, much remains to be learned about the neuroinvasive routes (transneuronal and hematogenous) of the virus and the cellular/molecular mechanisms underlying the development/progression of this disease. Future and ongoing studies require the establishment of more clinically relevant and suitable neural cell models using human induced pluripotent stem cells, brain organoids, and postmortem specimens.
    • Commentary on: Motivations, Expectations, and Experiences of Labiaplasty: A Qualitative Study

      Center for Obesity Research and Education (Temple University) (2016-04-12)
    • Concise Syntheses of bis‐Strychnos Alkaloids (−)‐Sungucine, (−)‐Isosungucine, and (−)‐Strychnogucine B from (−)‐Strychnine

      Zhao, Senzhi; Chen, Heng; Sirasani, Gopal; Dobereiner, Graham; Andrade, Rodrigo B.; Teijaro, Christiana; Vaddypally, Shivaiah; Zdilla, Michael; 0000-0001-5375-0241; 0000-0001-6203-9689; 0000-0003-0212-2557; 0000-0001-6885-2021 (2016-06-15)
      The first chemical syntheses of complex, bis‐Strychnos alkaloids (−)‐sungucine (1), (−)‐isosungucine (2), and (−)‐strychnogucine B (3) from (−)‐strychnine (4) is reported. Key steps included (1) the Polonovski–Potier activation of strychnine N‐oxide; (2) a biomimetic Mannich coupling to forge the signature C23−C5′ bond that joins two monoterpene indole monomers; and (3) a sequential HBr/NaBH3CN‐mediated reduction to fashion the ethylidene moieties in 1–3. DFT calculations were employed to rationalize the regiochemical course of reactions involving strychnine congeners.
    • Duolingo English Test, Revised Version July 2019

      Wagner, Elvis; 0000-0003-2332-3323 (2020-06-28)
      The Duolingo English Test (DET) is a computer adaptive test of English proficiency that is increasingly used for English-medium university admissions purposes. During the COVID-19 pandemic of 2020, test centers were shut down in many countries, and major tests including the TOEFL iBT and IELTS could not be administered. The DET is an “at home” test, and thus many universities began accepting DET scores as ameasure of applicants’ English proficiency. Because a revised version of the DET was launched in July, 2019, and because of the large increase in universities accepting DET scores, a critical review of the DET is warranted. The current review lauds the accessibility of the test (e.g., it is an inexpensive “at home” test that can be taken anywhere, in less than an hour, with scores returned in 48 hours). However, the test has multiple shortcomings: the test tasks have little in common with the types of language tasks university students engage in; the test does not assess test takers’ academic language ability, discourse level competence, or interactional competence; it is susceptible to cheating and test preparation; and it has a potential for negative washback on learners and learning systems. In addition, there is a lack of independent research validating the use of DET scores for admissions. Given these shortcomings, the use of DET scores cannot be recommended for university admissions purposes.
    • How journalists engage in branding on Twitter: individual, organizational, and institutional levels

      Molyneux, Logan; Holton, Avery E.; Lewis, Seth C.; 0000-0001-7382-3065 (2017-04-18)
      In a social media age, branding is an increasingly visible aspect of identity construction online. For media professionals generally and journalists especially, branding on spaces such as Twitter reveals the complicated set of forces confronting such public-facing actors as they navigate tensions between personal disclosure for authenticity and professional decorum for credibility, and between establishing one’s own distinctiveness and promoting one’s employer or other stakeholders. While studies have begun to reveal what journalists say about branding, they have yet to provide a broad profile of what they do. This study takes up that challenge through a content analysis of the Twitter profiles and tweets of a representative sample of 384 U.S. journalists. We focus on the extent of branding practices; the levels at which such branding occurs, whether to promote one’s self (individual), one’s news organization (organizational), or the journalism profession at large (institutional); and how other social media practices may be related to forms of journalistic branding. Results suggest that branding is now widely common among journalists on Twitter; that branding occurs at all three levels but primarily at the individual and organizational levels, with organizational branding taking priority; and that time on Twitter is connected with more personal information being shared.
    • Mobile News Consumption: A Habit of Snacking

      Molyneux, Logan; 0000-0001-7382-3065 (2017-06-16)
      This study investigates news consumption on mobile devices with the goal of identifying where mobile devices fit into people’s media repertoires and how consumption patterns on them are different from those on other platforms. Results suggest that mobile devices are almost always used along with other platforms for getting news, that news sessions on smartphones are shorter than on other platforms, and mobile news consumption happens more times per day and is spread throughout the day. Implications for the study of news consumption, news producers, and consumers are discussed.
    • Mobilization and Preparation of a Large Urban Academic Center During the COVID-19 Pandemic

      Chowdhury, Junad M.; Patel, Maulin; Zheng, Matthew; Abramian, Osheen; Criner, Gerard J. (2020-04-21)
    • Obesity and Sexual Functioning

      Center for Obesity Research and Education (Temple University) (2018-09-15)
    • Political Journalists’ Normalization of Twitter

      Molyneux, Logan; Mourão, Rachel R.; 0000-0001-7382-3065 (2017-10-05)
      Journalists are frequently doing some of their daily work on social media, spaces they did not create but have appropriated for journalistic purposes. Building on previous studies of how political journalists use social media, this study examines how news professionals and organizations are employing new affordances of the platform as they engage their audiences on Twitter. We expand on previously established narratives of normalization and negotiation of journalism’s boundaries by providing a snapshot of these processes in mid-stream, during the 2016 US presidential campaign. Our goal is to analyze how interaction-based affordances are being used by journalists and how audiences react to them. Results suggest retweets are used to promote their organization, quote tweets to comment on the work of peers at other news organizations, and replies mostly to bypass the 140-character limitation. When it comes to audiences, tweets containing multimedia and policy issues are more likely to generate engagement. Findings reveal that older forms of interaction (tweets and retweets) are more normalized than newer forms (replies and quote tweets) and journalists largely ignore members of the public, preferring to talk amongst themselves in social media echo chambers.
    • Preliminary predictive criteria for COVID-19 cytokine storm

      COVID-19 Research Group (Temple University) (2020-09-25)
      Objectives: To develop predictive criteria for COVID-19-associated cytokine storm (CS), a severe hyperimmune response that results in organ damage in some patients infected with COVID-19. We hypothesised that criteria for inflammation and cell death would predict this type of CS. Methods: We analysed 513 hospitalised patients who were positive for COVID-19 reverse transcriptase PCR and for ground-glass opacity by chest high-resolution CT. To achieve an early diagnosis, we analysed the laboratory results of the first 7 days of hospitalisation. We implemented logistic regression and principal component analysis to determine the redictive criteria. We used a ’genetic algorithm’ to derive the cut-offs for each laboratory result. We validated the criteria with a second cohort of 258 patients. Results: We found that the criteria for macrophage activation syndrome, haemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis and the HScore did not identify the COVID-19 cytokine storm (COVID-CS). We developed new predictive criteria, with sensitivity and specificity of 0.85 and 0.80, respectively, comprising three clusters of laboratory results that involve (1) inflammation, (2) cell death and tissue damage, and (3) prerenal electrolyte imbalance. The criteria identified patients with longer hospitalisation and increased mortality. These results highlight the relevance of hyperinflammation and tissue damage in the COVID-CS. Conclusions: We propose new early predictive criteria to identify the CS occurring in patients with COVID-19. The criteria can be readily used in clinical practice to determine the need for an early therapeutic regimen,block the hyperimmune response and possibly decrease mortality.