Journal of Urban Health

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ISSN / EISSN : 0022-1503 / 1465-7333
Total articles ≅ 16,143
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, Wrenetha A. Julion, Louis Fogg, Dawn T. Bounds
Published: 28 July 2021
Journal of Urban Health pp 1-12; doi:10.1007/s11524-021-00567-6

This study’s objective was to assess which caring recruitment behaviors correlate with the successful recruitment of older African-American adults—a two-step cross-sectional design employing a vignette-based survey methodology. Kristen Swanson’s middle-range theory of caring was used to guide the examination of African-American adults’ (65 years of age and older) perceptions of research-study-recruiter recruitment behaviors. This study’s main findings are twofold: Step 1: Seven of ten invited experts identified major revisions of the two core vignettes, written at an eighth-grade reading level and high school comprehension. Step 2: A 51% response rate yielded findings that this methodology successfully captured older African-American adults’ perception of research study recruiters’ behavioral characteristics during the recruitment process. Older African-Americans who received the hypothetical caring vignette were twice as likely to indicate their willingness to enroll in a research study with a high commitment (i.e., brain donation) compared to their counterparts who received the hypothetical uncaring recruitment scenario. Vignette-based survey methodology holds promise as a tool for informing the recruitment of older African-American adults and other minorities into federally funded health-related research studies.
, Brenda Biaani León-Gómez, Laia Palència, Katherine Pérez, Carme Borrell
Published: 6 July 2021
Journal of Urban Health; doi:10.1007/s11524-021-00546-x

While the negative effects of housing insecurity and unaffordability on health are well known, most of the studies in Spain have focused on very specific social groups so their findings cannot be extrapolated to the general population. The aim of this study is to assess the effects of housing stress and risk of displacement due to economic reasons, and their combined effect, on the mental and physical health of the general population from a middle-income neighborhood of Barcelona. We conducted a cross-sectional study using a household health survey which included respondents from a representative sample of 1202 non-institutionalized residents (> 18 years old) of the Horta neighborhood. We carried out a descriptive analysis, estimated the prevalence of poor mental and self-rated health (stratifying by the independent variables) and fitted robust Poisson regression models to estimate the effects of housing stress (HS) and the risk of forced displacement (RD) on self-rated health and mental health (GHQ-12). All analyses were stratified by sex. We found a higher likelihood of poor general and mental health among people affected by HS and/or RD compared to those not affected by HS and/or RD. A graded effect of HS and RD emerged mainly on mental health, even after adjusting by socioeconomic variables and housing tenure. The serious problem of housing insecurity and unaffordability in Spain is a widespread public health issue. Evidence-based public policies to improve well-being and health of people under this threat are urgently needed.
Amir M. Forati, Rina Ghose,
Published: 6 July 2021
Journal of Urban Health; doi:10.1007/s11524-021-00554-x

To provide data that can guide community-targeted practices, policies, and interventions in urban metropolitan areas, we used geospatial analysis to examine the community-level opioid overdose death determinants and their spatial variation across a study area. We obtained spatial datasets containing multiple, high-quality measures of socioeconomic conditions, public health status, and demographics for analysis and visualization in geographic information systems. We employed a multiscale modeling approach (multiscale geographically weighted regression; MGWR) to provide a comprehensive and robust analysis of opioid overdose death determinants, explain how geospatial patterns vary across scales across Milwaukee County in 2019, and examine the differential influence of factors locally, regionally, and globally. We subsequently examined how associations varied with the racial/ethnic composition of communities by dividing Milwaukee County into White-majority, Black-majority, and Hispanic-majority regions according to census data and conducting separate, independent modeling processes. Overall, the multiscale model explained 83% of opioid overdose death variability across neighborhoods in Milwaukee County using 12 selected variables. Statistical analysis and geovisualization of patterns, trends, and clusters using MGWR unveiled dramatic racialized health disparities in Milwaukee, showing how factors that influenced opioid overdose deaths varied across diverse communities in Milwaukee. The observed geographic variation in relationships included the impact of naloxone availability and incarceration rates on overdose deaths with pronounced differences between White communities and communities of color. Understanding, community-level factors that contribute to overdose risk should guide targeted community-level solutions. Overall, our findings demonstrate the value of precision epidemiology using MGWR analysis for defining and guiding responses to public health challenges.
, Jen’Nea Sumo, Michael E. Schoeny, Susan M. Breitenstein, Dawn T. Bounds
Published: 1 July 2021
Journal of Urban Health pp 1-16; doi:10.1007/s11524-021-00549-8

A significant proportion of African American (AA) fathers live in households apart from their young children. This living arrangement can have detrimental effects for children, families, and fathers. One hundred seventy-eight (n = 178) AA fathers, not residing with their 2–6-year-old children, were enrolled in a randomized trial to test the Building Bridges to Fatherhood (BBTF) program against a financial literacy comparison condition. BBTF is an intervention that was developed collaboratively with a fathers’ advisory council of AA fathers who oversaw all aspects of program development. Based upon advisory council feedback, short video scenes captured fathers interacting with their children, their children’s mothers, and other fathers. These video scenes were used to jump start the discussion around fatherhood, parenting, communication, and problem solving during the intervention group meetings. The actors in the video scenes were recruited from the community. Two trained group leaders, using a standardized group leader manual, delivered the intervention. The Money Smart Financial Literacy Program (MSFLP), which served as the comparator, was also delivered by AA men. Program satisfaction was high in both conditions. Even so recruitment and retention challenges influenced the ability to detect father and child outcomes. This study informs the participation of vulnerable urban AA fathers in community-based fatherhood intervention research and provides insight into bolstering engagement in studies focused on this population.
, Cilia Mejia-Lancheros, Anna Durbin, Rosane Nisenbaum, Ri Wang, Patricia O’Campo, Vicky Stergiopoulos, Stephen W. Hwang
Published: 28 June 2021
Journal of Urban Health pp 1-11; doi:10.1007/s11524-021-00550-1

We assessed the effects of the Toronto Site Housing First (HF) intervention on hospitalizations and emergency department (ED) visits among homeless adults with mental illness over 7 years of follow-up. The Toronto Site is part of an unblinded multi-site randomized pragmatic trial of HF for homeless adults with mental illness in Canada, which followed participants up to 7 years. Five hundred seventy-five participants were recruited and classified as having high (HN) or moderate need (MN) for mental health support services. Each group was randomized into intervention (HF) and treatment as usual groups, and 567 (98.6%) consented to link their data to health administrative databases. HF participants received a monthly rent supplement of $600 (Canadian) and assertive community treatment (ACT) support or intensive care management (ICM) support based on need level. Treatment as usual (TAU) participants had access to social, housing, and health services generally available in the community. Outcomes included all-cause and mental health-specific hospitalization, number of days in hospital, and ED visit. We used GEE models to estimate ratio of rate ratios (RRR). The results showed HF with ACT had no significant effect on hospitalization rates among HN participants, but reduced the number of days in hospital (RRR = 0.32, 95% CI 0.16-0.63) and number of ED visits (RRR = 0.57, 95% CI 0.34-0.95). HF with ICM resulted in an increase in the number of hospitalizations (RRR = 1.69, 95% CI 1.09-2.60) and ED visit rates (RRR = 1.42, 95% CI 1.01-2.01) but had no effect in days in hospital for MN participants. Addressing the health needs of this population and reducing acute care utilization remain system priorities. Trial registration: ISRCTN42520374
Published: 21 June 2021
Journal of Urban Health pp 1-8; doi:10.1007/s11524-021-00548-9

Improved understanding of perinatal psychoneuroimmunology is needed, particularly to combat the high rates of maternal and infant mortality witnessed among Black Americans. We compared the success of recruitment by advertisement, in person, or by phone during the course of a prospective cohort study of perinatal psychoneuroimmunology among Black American women. Over 24 months, 363 women were assessed and 96 were enrolled. Women recruited by phone were less likely to complete full screening than women recruited by advertisement (OR = 0.32, p < 0.01) or in person (OR = 0.19, p < 0.01). Women recruited by advertisement were less likely to complete full screening than women recruited in person (OR = 0.60, p = 0.05). Odds of unsuccessful contact were 13.2 and 11.5 times greater among women recruited by phone versus by advertisement or in person, respectively (p values ≤ 0.01). Women recruited by advertisement and in person showed similar odds of unsuccessful contact (OR = 0.87, p = 0.76). Odds of screening decline were similar following recruitment in person or by phone when contact was successful (OR = 0.85, p = 0.76). Focusing on eligible women (n = 142), those recruited in person were significantly less likely to enroll than those recruited by advertisement (OR = 0.28, p < 0.01; Fig. 4). Considering all women (n = 363), odds of enrollment did not significantly differ among the recruitment groups (p values ≥ 0.09). Most (93.8%) enrolled women consented to biological specimen banking. Findings from this brief report provide a starting point for perinatal scientists to critically consider not only how to maximize research efforts but also how research team actions may perpetuate or assuage the research mistrust introduced by long-standing social inequities.
, Pavel Dobrynin, Anna Zhuk, Daria V Zhernakova, Polina L Perelman, Natalia A Serdyukova, Alexander S Graphodatsky, Aleksey Komissarov, Sergei Kliver, Nikolay Cherkasov, et al.
Journal of Urban Health; doi:10.1093/jhered/esab036

The Puma lineage within the family Felidae consists of three species that last shared a common ancestor around 4.9 million years ago. Whole-genome sequences of two species from the lineage were previously reported: the cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus) and the mountain lion (Puma concolor). The present report describes a whole-genome assembly of the remaining species, the jaguarundi (Puma yagouaroundi). We sequenced the genome of a male jaguarundi with 10X Genomics linked reads and assembled the whole-genome sequence. The assembled genome contains a series of scaffolds that reach the length of chromosome arms and is similar in scaffold contiguity to the genome assemblies of cheetah and puma, with a contig N50 = 100.2 kbp and a scaffold N50 = 49.27 Mbp. We assessed the assembled sequence of the jaguarundi genome using BUSCO, aligned reads of the sequenced individual and another published female jaguarundi to the assembled genome, annotated protein-coding genes, repeats, genomic variants and their effects with respect to the protein-coding genes, and analyzed differences of the two jaguarundis from the reference mitochondrial genome. The jaguarundi genome assembly and its annotation were compared in quality, variants and features to the previously reported genome assemblies of puma and cheetah. Computational analyzes used in the study were implemented in transparent and reproducible way to allow their further reuse and modification.
, Naillid Felipe, Kyle Fischer, Neil Jay Sehgal, Brad E. Schwartz
Published: 17 June 2021
Journal of Urban Health pp 1-5; doi:10.1007/s11524-021-00551-0

, James G Rheinwald, , Daniel R Stahler, William Lowry, , Robert K Wayne
Journal of Urban Health; doi:10.1093/jhered/esab029

In North American gray wolves, black coat color is dominantly inherited via a 3 base pair coding deletion in the canine beta defensin 3 (CBD103) gene. This 3 base pair deletion, called the KB allele, was introduced through hybridization with dogs and subsequently underwent a selective sweep that increased its frequency in wild wolves. Despite apparent positive selection, KBB wolves have lower fitness than wolves with the KyB genotype, even though the 2 genotypes show no observable differences in black coat color. Thus, the KB allele is thought to have pleiotropic effects on as-yet unknown phenotypes. Given the role of skin-expressed CBD103 in innate immunity, we hypothesized that the KB allele influences the keratinocyte gene expression response to TLR3 pathway stimulation and/or infection by canine distemper virus (CDV). To test this hypothesis, we developed a panel of primary epidermal keratinocyte cell cultures from 24 wild North American gray wolves of both Kyy and KyB genotypes. In addition, we generated an immortalized Kyy line and used CRISPR/Cas9 editing to produce a KyB line on the same genetic background. We assessed the transcriptome-wide responses of wolf keratinocytes to the TLR3 agonist polyinosinic:polycytidylic acid (polyI:C), and to live CDV. K locus genotype did not predict the transcriptional response to either challenge, suggesting that variation in the gene expression response does not explain pleiotropic effects of the KB allele on fitness. This study supports the feasibility of using cell culture methods to investigate the phenotypic effects of naturally occurring genetic variation in wild mammals.
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