Matching Items (317)

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The Transtheoretical Model in the Prevention of Childhood Obesity

Description

Childhood obesity is a growing public health concern in the United States. For several years, many interventions have been established to reduce the prevalence of childhood obesity. However, these interventions

Childhood obesity is a growing public health concern in the United States. For several years, many interventions have been established to reduce the prevalence of childhood obesity. However, these interventions have not adequately utilized existing models of behavior change, and as a result, have been unsuccessful in increasing levels of physical activity and healthy dietary intake. One such model of change, the Transtheoretical Model, views behavior change as occurring through a series of stages with progression through the stages being facilitated by cognitive and behavioral processes. Within these processes the constructs of consciousness-raising, helping relationships, and self-efficacy have been shown to be most influential in changing behaviors. Thus, the objective of this paper is to evaluate the effectiveness of such constructs and establish a multi-faceted approach to combat this epidemic.

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Date Created
  • 2012-12

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Physical Fitness and Academic Achievement: The Mind-Body Connection

Description

Children's wellbeing has been of utmost concern to society, and recently this topic has taken a particular focus in both health and achievement. As the focus shifts towards promoting a

Children's wellbeing has been of utmost concern to society, and recently this topic has taken a particular focus in both health and achievement. As the focus shifts towards promoting a healthier and more academically successful youth, the relationship between the two warrants investigation. Specifically, the relationship between physical fitness and academic performance (i.e. grades) in 4th grade students was assessed. A cross-sectional design was used to assess physical fitness of children (M=9.39 years) by means of the FITNESSGRAM assessment tool. Third-quarter grades were used to measure academic performance. Relationships between the variables were determined through bivariate plots, Pearson product moment correlation analysis, independent t-tests, and a three-step regression analysis. The results show a significant relationship between students' aerobic fitness and academic performance. Furthermore, the findings of this study suggest incremental validity between aerobic fitness and academic performance, thus implying predictive value associated with increased physical fitness and academic achievement.

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Date Created
  • 2012-12

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Using an Active Case Based Learning Model to Increase Scientific Interest, Understanding of and Confidence in the Process of Science in Secondary Education

Description

Many high school students demonstrate an overall lack of interest in science. Traditional teaching methodologies seem to be unsuccessful at engaging students \u2014 one explanation is that students often interpret

Many high school students demonstrate an overall lack of interest in science. Traditional teaching methodologies seem to be unsuccessful at engaging students \u2014 one explanation is that students often interpret what they learn in school as irrelevant to their personal lives. Active learning and case based learning methodologies seem to be more effective at promoting interest and understanding of scientific principles. The purpose of our research was to implement a lab with updated teaching methodologies that included an active learning and case based curriculum. The lab was implemented in two high school honors biology classes with the specific goals of: significantly increasing students' interest in science and its related fields; increasing students' self-efficacy in their ability to understand and interpret the traditional process of the scientific method; and increasing this traditional process of objectively understanding the scientific method. Our results indicated that interest in science and its related fields (p = .011), students' self-efficacy in understanding the scientific method (p = .000), and students' objective understanding of the scientific method (p = .000) statistically significantly increased after the lab was administered; however, our results may not be as meaningful as the p-values imply due to the scale of our assessment.

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Date Created
  • 2012-12

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Contributing Factors to the Patient Burden of Work

Description

Patients face tremendous challenges when attempting to navigate the United States health care system. This difficulty to navigate the system creates a burden that is placed on the patient and

Patients face tremendous challenges when attempting to navigate the United States health care system. This difficulty to navigate the system creates a burden that is placed on the patient and caregiver, in turn affecting the health outcomes of the patient, resulting in higher health care costs, less than desirable outcomes, and a large strain on the patient and caregiver's daily lives. There are several ways that people have tried to create a comprehensive theoretical framework to understand the system from multiple perspectives. This work will expand existing theoretical frameworks that observes the relationship between the patient, their social networks, and health care services such as the Burden of Treatment Theory. Consisting of a comprehensive, multidisciplinary literature review, research was derived from the disciplines of medicine, informatics, management, and ethics. In this paper, I attempt to identify key contributing factors and then develop and categorize these stressors into a typology. Since there are many contributing factors that affect the burden of work at multiple levels, a nested typology will be used which will link micro- and macro-leveled pressures to a single system while also showcasing how each level interacts and is influenced by the others. For the categorization of the contributing factors, they will be sorted into individual actors, organizational level, and macro-level factors. The implications of this work suggest that a combination of historical shifts, structural design, and secondary effects of policy contribute to patients' burden of work.

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Date Created
  • 2017-05

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The Effect of Age on Second Language Acquisition with Indirect Instruction

Description

This thesis covers second language acquisition in regards to age, examining the difference between elementary and high school students. The primary language of all the students tested was English. The

This thesis covers second language acquisition in regards to age, examining the difference between elementary and high school students. The primary language of all the students tested was English. The second language being tested in this study is German. The general age range in the elementary students observed was 7-12 years old. The high school students' ages were between 14-18 years old. The environment consisted of a physical education atmosphere, which includes: gyms, outside recreational areas, fitness equipment, fields, etc. Methods used to conduct this study were visual and auditory/verbal approaches. No direct instruction was provided to the students, they were assessed based on their ability to absorb the information when provided to them indirectly in a traditional classroom atmosphere. In addition, direct instruction is also not conducive to a physical education setting as it has the potential to detract from the necessary lesson content.

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  • 2017-05

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Evolution-Informed Modeling Improves Outcome Prediction for Cancers

Description

Despite wide applications of high-throughput biotechnologies in cancer research, many biomarkers discovered by exploring large-scale omics data do not provide satisfactory performance when used to predict cancer treatment outcomes. This

Despite wide applications of high-throughput biotechnologies in cancer research, many biomarkers discovered by exploring large-scale omics data do not provide satisfactory performance when used to predict cancer treatment outcomes. This problem is partly due to the overlooking of functional implications of molecular markers. Here, we present a novel computational method that uses evolutionary conservation as prior knowledge to discover bona fide biomarkers. Evolutionary selection at the molecular level is nature's test on functional consequences of genetic elements. By prioritizing genes that show significant statistical association and high functional impact, our new method reduces the chances of including spurious markers in the predictive model. When applied to predicting therapeutic responses for patients with acute myeloid leukemia and to predicting metastasis for patients with prostate cancers, the new method gave rise to evolution-informed models that enjoyed low complexity and high accuracy. The identified genetic markers also have significant implications in tumor progression and embrace potential drug targets. Because evolutionary conservation can be estimated as a gene-specific, position-specific, or allele-specific parameter on the nucleotide level and on the protein level, this new method can be extended to apply to miscellaneous “omics” data to accelerate biomarker discoveries.

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Date Created
  • 2016-10-21

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Comparison of Machine Learning Methods for Classifying Mediastinal Lymph Node Metastasis of Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer From 18F-FDG PET/CT Images

Description

Background: This study aimed to compare one state-of-the-art deep learning method and four classical machine learning methods for classifying mediastinal lymph node metastasis of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) from [superscript

Background: This study aimed to compare one state-of-the-art deep learning method and four classical machine learning methods for classifying mediastinal lymph node metastasis of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) from [superscript 18]F-FDG PET/CT images. Another objective was to compare the discriminative power of the recently popular PET/CT texture features with the widely used diagnostic features such as tumor size, CT value, SUV, image contrast, and intensity standard deviation. The four classical machine learning methods included random forests, support vector machines, adaptive boosting, and artificial neural network. The deep learning method was the convolutional neural networks (CNN). The five methods were evaluated using 1397 lymph nodes collected from PET/CT images of 168 patients, with corresponding pathology analysis results as gold standard. The comparison was conducted using 10 times 10-fold cross-validation based on the criterion of sensitivity, specificity, accuracy (ACC), and area under the ROC curve (AUC). For each classical method, different input features were compared to select the optimal feature set. Based on the optimal feature set, the classical methods were compared with CNN, as well as with human doctors from our institute.

Results: For the classical methods, the diagnostic features resulted in 81~85% ACC and 0.87~0.92 AUC, which were significantly higher than the results of texture features. CNN’s sensitivity, specificity, ACC, and AUC were 84, 88, 86, and 0.91, respectively. There was no significant difference between the results of CNN and the best classical method. The sensitivity, specificity, and ACC of human doctors were 73, 90, and 82, respectively. All the five machine learning methods had higher sensitivities but lower specificities than human doctors.

Conclusions: The present study shows that the performance of CNN is not significantly different from the best classical methods and human doctors for classifying mediastinal lymph node metastasis of NSCLC from PET/CT images. Because CNN does not need tumor segmentation or feature calculation, it is more convenient and more objective than the classical methods. However, CNN does not make use of the import diagnostic features, which have been proved more discriminative than the texture features for classifying small-sized lymph nodes. Therefore, incorporating the diagnostic features into CNN is a promising direction for future research.

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Date Created
  • 2017-01-28

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eHealth Literacy Demands and Cognitive Processes Underlying Barriers in Consumer Health Information Seeking

Description

Background: Consumer eHealth tools play an increasingly important role in engaging patients as participants in managing their health and seeking health information. However, there is a documented gap between the

Background: Consumer eHealth tools play an increasingly important role in engaging patients as participants in managing their health and seeking health information. However, there is a documented gap between the skill and knowledge demands of eHealth systems and user competencies to benefit from these tools.

Objective: This research aims to reveal the knowledge- and skill-related barriers to effective use of eHealth tools. Methods: We used a micro-analytic framework for characterizing the different cognitive dimensions of eHealth literacy to classify task demands and barriers that 20 participants experienced while performing online information-seeking and decision-making tasks.

Results: Participants ranged widely in their task performance across all 6 tasks as measured by task scores and types of barriers encountered. The highest performing participant experienced only 14 barriers whereas the lowest scoring one experienced 153. A more detailed analysis of two tasks revealed that the highest number of incorrect answers and experienced barriers were caused by tasks requiring: (a) Media literacy and Science literacy at high cognitive complexity levels and (b) a combination of Numeracy and Information literacy at different cognitive complexity levels.

Conclusions: Applying this type of analysis enabled us to characterize task demands by literacy type and by cognitive complexity. Mapping barriers to literacy types provided insight into the interaction between users and eHealth tasks. Although the gap between eHealth tools, users’ skills, and knowledge can be difficult to bridge, an understanding of the cognitive complexity and literacy demands can serve to reduce the gap between designer and consumer.

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Date Created
  • 2015-12

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A study protocol of a three-group randomized feasibility trial of an online yoga intervention for mothers after stillbirth (The Mindful Health Study)

Description

Background
In the USA, stillbirth (in utero fetal death ≥20 weeks gestation) is a major public health issue. Women who experience stillbirth, compared to women with live birth, have a

Background
In the USA, stillbirth (in utero fetal death ≥20 weeks gestation) is a major public health issue. Women who experience stillbirth, compared to women with live birth, have a nearly sevenfold increased risk of a positive screen for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and a fourfold increased risk of depressive symptoms. Because the majority of women who have experienced the death of their baby become pregnant within 12–18 months and the lack of intervention studies conducted within this population, novel approaches targeting physical and mental health, specific to the needs of this population, are critical. Evidence suggests that yoga is efficacious, safe, acceptable, and cost-effective for improving mental health in a variety of populations, including pregnant and postpartum women. To date, there are no known studies examining online-streaming yoga as a strategy to help mothers cope with PTSD symptoms after stillbirth.
Methods
The present study is a two-phase randomized controlled trial. Phase 1 will involve (1) an iterative design process to develop the online yoga prescription for phase 2 and (2) qualitative interviews to identify cultural barriers to recruitment in non-Caucasian women (i.e., predominately Hispanic and/or African American) who have experienced stillbirth (N = 5). Phase 2 is a three-group randomized feasibility trial with assessments at baseline, and at 12 and 20 weeks post-intervention. Ninety women who have experienced a stillbirth within 6 weeks to 24 months will be randomized into one of the following three arms for 12 weeks: (1) intervention low dose (LD) = 60 min/week online-streaming yoga (n = 30), (2) intervention moderate dose (MD) = 150 min/week online-streaming yoga (n = 30), or (3) stretch and tone control (STC) group = 60 min/week of stretching/toning exercises (n = 30).
Discussion
This study will explore the feasibility and acceptability of a 12-week, home-based, online-streamed yoga intervention, with varying doses among mothers after a stillbirth. If feasible, the findings from this study will inform a full-scale trial to determine the effectiveness of home-based online-streamed yoga to improve PTSD. Long-term, health care providers could use online yoga as a non-pharmaceutical, inexpensive resource for stillbirth aftercare.

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Date Created
  • 2017-07-06

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In silico analysis suggests interaction between Ebola virus and the extracellular matrix

Description

The worst Ebola virus (EV) outbreak in history has hit Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea hardest and the trend lines in this crisis are grave, and now represents a global

The worst Ebola virus (EV) outbreak in history has hit Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea hardest and the trend lines in this crisis are grave, and now represents a global public health threat concern. Limited therapeutic and/or prophylactic options are available for people suffering from Ebola virus disease (EVD) and further complicate the situation. Previous studies suggested that the EV glycoprotein (GP) is the main determinant causing structural damage of endothelial cells that triggers the hemorrhagic diathesis, but molecular mechanisms underlying this phenomenon remains elusive. Using the informational spectrum method (ISM), a virtual spectroscopy method for analysis of the protein-protein interactions, the interaction of GP with endothelial extracellular matrix (ECM) was investigated. Presented results of this in silico study suggest that Elastin Microfibril Interface Located Proteins (EMILINs) are involved in interaction between GP and ECM. This finding could contribute to a better understanding of EV/endothelium interaction and its role in pathogenesis, prevention and therapy of EVD.

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Date Created
  • 2015-02-19