ISSN / EISSN : 1932-6203 / 1932-6203
Published by: Public Library of Science (PLoS) (10.1371)
Total articles ≅ 257,615
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PLoS ONE, Volume 16; https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0258492
Communicating Brazilian science still seems to be a challenge for journalists and researchers of public institutions of education and science. In this sense, this research aims to identify and analyze scientists’ perceptions regarding the work of journalists, the relationship between these groups, the expectations, and the challenges of science communication in two Federal Institutes of Education in Brazil. We conducted a mixed study in the qualitative stage with the participation of 30 interviewees, and in the quantitative stage, journalists and researchers answered a questionnaire (n = 242). Our results indicated that the work of science communication is not carried out properly in both Institutes and that there is a lack of articulated work among both journalists, communicators, and researchers. The relationship between these groups needs to be built jointly. In this respect, the biggest challenges are to institutionalize science communication, establish a science communication plan, and overcome internal relationship barriers. Our results may underpin science communication policies and policies for scientific dissemination both institutional or even national levels.
PLoS ONE, Volume 16; https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0258683
The development of B and T lymphocytes critically depends on RAG1/2 endonuclease activity to mediate antigen receptor gene assembly by V(D)J recombination. Although control of RAG1/2 activity through cell cycle- and ubiquitin-dependent degradation of RAG2 has been studied in detail, relatively little is known about mechanisms regulating RAG1 stability. We recently demonstrated that VprBP/DCAF1, a substrate adaptor for the CRL4 E3 ubiquitin ligase complex, is required to maintain physiological levels of RAG1 protein in murine B cells by facilitating RAG1 turnover. Loss of VprBP/DCAF1 in vivo results in elevated RAG1 expression, excessive V(D)J recombination, and immunoglobulin light chain repertoire skewing. Here we show that RAG1 is constitutively degraded when ectopically expressed in a human fibroblast cell line. Consistent with our findings in murine B cells, RAG1 turnover under these conditions is sensitive to loss of VprBP, as well as CRL4 or proteasome inhibition. Further evidence indicates that RAG1 degradation is ubiquitin-dependent and that RAG1 association with the CRL4VPRBP/DCAF1 complex is independent of CUL4 activation status. Taken together, these findings suggest V(D)J recombination co-opts an evolutionarily conserved and constitutively active mechanism to ensure rapid RAG1 turnover to restrain excessive RAG activity.
PLoS ONE, Volume 16; https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0258187
Background Nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) is a cancer of epithelial origin with a high incidence in certain populations. While NPC has a high remission rate with concomitant chemoradiation, recurrences are frequent, and the downstream morbidity of treatment is significant. Thus, it is imperative to find alternative therapies. Methods We employed a Search Tag Analyze Resource (STARGEO) platform to conduct a meta-analysis using the National Center for Biotechnology’s (NCBI) Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO) to define NPC pathogenesis. We identified 111 tumor samples and 43 healthy nasopharyngeal epithelium samples from NPC public patient data. We analyzed associated signatures in Ingenuity Pathway Analysis (IPA), restricting genes that showed statistical significance (p<0.05) and an absolute experimental log ratio greater than 0.15 between disease and control samples. Results Our meta-analysis identified activation of lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced tissue injury in NPC tissue. Additionally, interleukin-1 (IL-1) and SB203580 were the top upstream regulators. Tumorigenesis-related genes such as homeobox A10 (HOXA10) and prostaglandin-endoperoxide synthase 2 (PTGS2 or COX-2) as well as those associated with extracellular matrix degradation, such as matrix metalloproteinases 1 and 3 (MMP-1, MMP-3) were also upregulated. Decreased expression of genes that encode proteins associated with maintaining healthy nasal respiratory epithelium structural integrity, including sentan-cilia apical structure protein (SNTN) and lactotransferrin (LTF) was documented. Importantly, we found that etanercept inhibits targets upregulated in NPC and LPS induction, such as MMP-1, PTGS2, and possibly MMP-3. Conclusions Our analysis illustrates that nasal epithelial barrier dysregulation and maladaptive immune responses are key components of NPC pathogenesis along with LPS-induced tissue damage.
PLoS ONE, Volume 16; https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0258308
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is causing significant morbidity and mortality across the US. In this ecological study, we identified county-level variables associated with the COVID-19 case-fatality rate (CFR) using publicly available datasets and a negative binomial generalized linear model. Variables associated with decreased CFR included a greater number of hospitals per 10,000 people, banning religious gatherings, a higher percentage of people living in mobile homes, and a higher percentage of uninsured people. Variables associated with increased CFR included a higher percentage of the population over age 65, a higher percentage of Black or African Americans, a higher asthma prevalence, and a greater number of hospitals in a county. By identifying factors that are associated with COVID-19 CFR in US counties, we hope to help officials target public health interventions and healthcare resources to locations that are at increased risk of COVID-19 fatalities.
PLoS ONE, Volume 16; https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0258349
Background People with severe mental ill health (SMI) experience a mortality gap of 15–20 years. COVID-19 has amplified population health inequalities, and there is concern that people with SMI will be disproportionately affected. Understanding how health risk behaviours have changed during the pandemic is important when developing strategies to mitigate future increases in health inequalities. Methods We sampled from an existing cohort of people with SMI. Researchers contacted participants by phone or post to invite them to take part in a survey about how the pandemic had affected them. We asked people about their health risk behaviours and how these had changed during the pandemic. We created an index of changed behaviours, comprising dietary factors, smoking, lack of exercise, and drinking patterns. By creating data linkages, we compared their responses during pandemic restrictions to responses they gave prior to the pandemic. Outcomes 367 people provided health risk data. The mean age of the participants was 50.5 (range = 20 to 86, SD ± 15.69) with 51.0% male and 77.4% white British. 47.5% of participants reported taking less physical activity during the pandemic and of those who smoke 54.5% reported smoking more heavily. Self-reported deterioration in physical health was significantly associated with an increase in health risk behaviours (adjusted OR for physical health 1.59, 95%CI 1.22–2.07; adjusted OR for Age 0.99, 95%CI 0.98–1.00). Interpretation COVID-19 is likely to amplify health inequalities for people with SMI. Health services should target health risk behaviours for people with SMI to mitigate the immediate and long lasting impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
PLoS ONE, Volume 16; https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0258478
The purpose of this study was to clarify the effects of individual infection control measures and physical distancing on pediatric medical care in a local prefecture in Japan, where the incidence of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in pediatric patients was extremely low. We extracted data from hospital records on the number of outpatients, inpatients, infectious disease consultations, and consultations for representative pediatric diseases. We compared attendance in 2017–2019, before the COVID-19 pandemic, with 2020, when COVID-19 spread to Japan. There were no COVID-19 patients in the pediatric department during the study period. The total number outpatient visits decreased by 24.4%, and the number of hospital admissions, excluding neonatal care unit admissions, decreased by approximately 35%. There was a marked reduction in the number of hospitalizations for infectious diseases such as influenza (−74.8%) and respiratory syncytial virus infection (−93.5%), and the number of hospitalizations for bronchitis/pneumonia, Kawasaki disease, and bronchial asthma decreased. In contrast, the number of clinical psychological interventions and cases reported to the child guidance center increased. In the context of pandemic infectious diseases, it is important to control the spread of problematic infectious diseases by individual infection control measures and physical distancing. However, it is necessary to maintain social life as much as possible for the mental health and physical development of children.
PLoS ONE, Volume 16; https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0254542
The purposes are to solve the isomorphism encountered while processing hyperspectral remote sensing data and improve the accuracy of hyperspectral remote sensing data in extracting and classifying lithological information. Taking rocks as the research object, Backpropagation Neural Network (BPNN) is introduced. After the hyperspectral image data are normalized, the lithological spectrum and spatial information are the feature extraction targets to construct a deep learning-based lithological information extraction model. The performance of the model is analyzed using specific instance data. Results demonstrate that the overall accuracy and the Kappa coefficient of the lithological information extraction and classification model based on deep learning were 90.58% and 0.8676, respectively. This model can precisely distinguish the properties of rock masses and provide better performance compared with the state of other analysis models. After introducing deep learning, the recognition accuracy and the Kappa coefficient of the proposed BPNN model increased by 8.5% and 0.12, respectively, compared with the traditional BPNN. The proposed extraction and classification model can provide some research values and practical significances for the hyperspectral rock and mineral classification.
PLoS ONE, Volume 16; https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0258305
Increasing the amount of regular physical education lessons in school is currently discussed in many countries in order to increase physical activity in youth. The purpose of this study was to compare the motor performance of pupils from an observation group participating in a school trial of two additional physical education lessons (5 lessons of each 50 min/week) without a specific intervention program to a control group with a regular amount of three physical education lessons (3 lessons of each 50 min/week) as indicated by the standard Austrian school curriculum. In this cohort study motor performance of 140 adolescents (12.7±0.5 years) was assessed by means of the German Motor Performance Test 6–18 over a period of 1.5 years with measurement time points before (T1), after eight months (T2) and at the end of the observation period (T3). Two- and three-way mixed analysis of variance were used to detect time, group and interaction effects. Although the observation group demonstrated a higher total motor performance score at all time points (P = 0.005), the improvement over time in total motor performance (P < 0.001) was more pronounced in the control group. Girls and boys developed differently over time (time*gender interaction: P = 0.001), whereby group allocation did not affect this interaction (time*gender*group: P = 0.167). Anyway, girls of control group tend to benefit most of additional physical education lessons. Sports club members scored significantly higher in motor performance across the observation period (P = 0.018) irrespective of group allocation. These findings indicate that there could be a ceiling effect in what the pupils could achieve in terms of motor performance as the pupils of the observation group might have reached this point earlier than their counterparts in the control group. Nevertheless, sports club membership seems to reveal some benefits. Whether improving quality and specificity of the single physical lessons might be superior to merely adding additional ones needs to be confirmed in future studies.
PLoS ONE, Volume 16; https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0258339
Background Despite increased testing efforts and the deployment of vaccines, COVID-19 cases and death toll continue to rise at record rates. Health systems routinely collect clinical and non-clinical information in electronic health records (EHR), yet little is known about how the minimal or intermediate spectra of EHR data can be leveraged to characterize patient SARS-CoV-2 pretest probability in support of interventional strategies. Methods and findings We modeled patient pretest probability for SARS-CoV-2 test positivity and determined which features were contributing to the prediction and relative to patients triaged in inpatient, outpatient, and telehealth/drive-up visit-types. Data from the University of Washington (UW) Medicine Health System, which excluded UW Medicine care providers, included patients predominately residing in the Seattle Puget Sound area, were used to develop a gradient-boosting decision tree (GBDT) model. Patients were included if they had at least one visit prior to initial SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR testing between January 01, 2020 through August 7, 2020. Model performance assessments used area-under-the-receiver-operating-characteristic (AUROC) and area-under-the-precision-recall (AUPR) curves. Feature performance assessments used SHapley Additive exPlanations (SHAP) values. The generalized pretest probability model using all available features achieved high overall discriminative performance (AUROC, 0.82). Performance among inpatients (AUROC, 0.86) was higher than telehealth/drive-up testing (AUROC, 0.81) or outpatient testing (AUROC, 0.76). The two-week test positivity rate in patient ZIP code was the most informative feature towards test positivity across visit-types. Geographic and sociodemographic factors were more important predictors of SARS-CoV-2 positivity than individual clinical characteristics. Conclusions Recent geographic and sociodemographic factors, routinely collected in EHR though not routinely considered in clinical care, are the strongest predictors of initial SARS-CoV-2 test result. These findings were consistent across visit types, informing our understanding of individual SARS-CoV-2 risk factors with implications for deployment of testing, outreach, and population-level prevention efforts.
PLoS ONE, Volume 16; https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0258387
Background The values of individuals and organizations are the core factors driving and guiding nurses’ decision-making and actions. Previous studies mainly focused on the impact of organizational commitment and other influencing factors on turnover intention. Aim To explore the mediating effect of personal and organizational values matching the relationship between organizational commitment and turnover intention of nursing staff. Methods A cross-sectional survey of 490 subjects in four tertiary hospitals in Tianjin was conducted by convenient sampling. Multivariate regression analysis and structural equation models were used to test each hypothesis. Results The results showed that there is a negative correlation between personal and organizational values, organizational commitment and turnover intention, and personal and organizational values played an indirect intermediary role between organizational commitment and turnover intention. Conclusions Organizational commitment reduces nurses’ turnover intention indirect through personal and organizational values paths. Leaders can improve nurses’ values as members of the organization, so as to participate in their own work more actively. Implications for nursing management Managers should effectively reduce the turnover rate and stabilize the nursing team by improving the organizational commitment and personal and organizational values of clinical nurses.