Melbourne School of Population and Global Health - Research Publications
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Plasma microRNAs as biomarkers of pancreatic cancer risk in a prospective cohort study
Noninvasive biomarkers for early pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) diagnosis and disease risk stratification are greatly needed. We conducted a nested case-control study within the Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) cohort to evaluate prediagnostic microRNAs (miRs) as biomarkers of subsequent PDAC risk. A panel of eight miRs (miR-10a, -10b, -21-3p, -21-5p, -30c, -106b, -155 and -212) based on previous evidence from our group was evaluated in 225 microscopically confirmed PDAC cases and 225 controls matched on center, sex, fasting status and age/date/time of blood collection. MiR levels in prediagnostic plasma samples were determined by quantitative RT-PCR. Logistic regression was used to model levels and PDAC risk, adjusting for covariates and to estimate area under the receiver operating characteristic curves (AUC). Plasma miR-10b, -21-5p, -30c and -106b levels were significantly higher in cases diagnosed within 2 years of blood collection compared to matched controls (all p-values <0.04). Based on adjusted logistic regression models, levels for six miRs (miR-10a, -10b, -21-5p, -30c, -155 and -212) overall, and for four miRs (-10a, -10b, -21-5p and -30c) at shorter follow-up time between blood collection and diagnosis (≤5 yr, ≤2 yr), were statistically significantly associated with risk. A score based on the panel showed a linear dose-response trend with risk (p-value = 0.0006). For shorter follow-up (≤5 yr), AUC for the score was 0.73, and for individual miRs ranged from 0.73 (miR-212) to 0.79 (miR-21-5p).
Trends in the surgical management of stage 1 renal cell carcinoma: findings from a population-based study
OBJECTIVES: To determine whether the use of nephron-sparing surgery (NSS) for treatment of stage 1 renal cell carcinoma (RCC) changed between 2009 and the end of 2013 in Australia. PATIENTS AND METHODS: All adult cases of RCC diagnosed in 2009, 2012 and 2013 were identified through the population-based Victorian Cancer Registry. For each identified patient, trained data-abstractors attended treating hospitals or clinician rooms to extract tumour and treatment data through medical record review. Multivariable logistic regression analyses were carried out to examine the significance of change in use of NSS over time, after adjusting for potential confounders. RESULTS: A total of 1 836 patients with RCC were identified. Of these, the proportion of cases with stage 1 tumours was 64% in 2009, 66% in 2012 and 69% in 2013. For T1a tumours, the proportion of patients residing in metropolitan areas receiving NSS increased from 43% in 2009 to 58% in 2012 (P < 0.05), and 69% in 2013 (P < 0.05). For patients residing in non-metropolitan areas, the proportion receiving NSS increased from 27% in 2009 to 49% in 2012, and 61% in 2013 (P < 0.01). Univariable logistic regression showed patients with moderate (odds ratio [OR] 0.57, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.35-0.94) or severe comorbidities (OR 0.58, 95% CI 0.33-0.99), residing in non-metropolitan areas (OR 0.65, 95% CI 0.47-0.90), were less likely to be treated by NSS, while those attending high-volume hospitals (≥30 cases/year: OR 1.79, 95% CI 1.21-2.65) and those with higher socio-economic status (OR 1.45, 95% CI 1.02-2.07) were more likely to be treated by NSS. In multivariable analyses, patients with T1a tumours in 2012 (OR 2.00, 95% CI 1.34-2.97) and 2013 (OR 3.15, 95% CI 2.13-4.68) were more likely to be treated by NSS than those in 2009. For T1b tumours, use of NSS increased from 8% in 2009 to 20% in 2013 (P < 0.05). CONCLUSION: This population-based study of the management of T1 renal tumours in Australia found that the use of NSS increased over the period 2009 to 2013. Between 2009 and 2013 clinical practice for the treatment of small renal tumours in Australia has increasingly conformed to international guidelines.
Interpersonal discrimination and markers of adiposity in longitudinal studies: a systematic review
While the impact of interpersonal discrimination on mental health is well established, its effects on physical health outcomes have not been fully elucidated. This study systematically reviewed the literature on the prospective association between interpersonal discrimination and markers of adiposity. Medline, Web of Science, Scopus, PsycInfo, SciELO, LILACS, Google Scholar, Capes/Brazil and ProQuest databases were used to retrieve relevant information in November 2016. The results from the 10 studies that met the inclusion criteria support an association between interpersonal self-reported discrimination and the outcomes. In general, the most consistent findings were for weight and body mass index (BMI) among women, i.e. high levels of self-reported discrimination were related to increased weight and BMI. Waist circumference (WC) showed a similar pattern of association with discrimination, in a positive direction, but an inverted U-shaped association was also found. Despite a few inverse associations between discrimination and markers of adiposity, none of the associations were statistically significant. Overall, markers of adiposity were consistently associated with discrimination, mainly through direct and nonlinear associations. This review provides evidence that self-reported discrimination can play an important role in weight, BMI and WC changes.
The association between psychotic experiences and disability: results from the WHO World Mental Health Surveys
OBJECTIVE: While psychotic experiences (PEs) are known to be associated with a range of mental and general medical disorders, little is known about the association between PEs and measures of disability. We aimed to investigate this question using the World Mental Health surveys. METHOD: Lifetime occurrences of six types of PEs were assessed along with 21 mental disorders and 14 general medical conditions. Disability was assessed with a modified version of the WHO Disability Assessment Schedule. Descriptive statistics and logistic regression models were used to investigate the association between PEs and high disability scores (top quartile) with various adjustments. RESULTS: Respondents with PEs were more likely to have top quartile scores on global disability than respondents without PEs (19.1% vs. 7.5%; χ2 = 190.1, P < 0.001) as well as greater likelihood of cognitive, social, and role impairment. Relationships persisted in each adjusted model. A significant dose-response relationship was also found for the PE type measures with most of these outcomes. CONCLUSIONS: Psychotic experiences are associated with disability measures with a dose-response relationship. These results are consistent with the view that PEs are associated with disability regardless of the presence of comorbid mental or general medical disorders.
Retrospective evaluation of venous thromboembolism: Are all transient provoking events the same?
OBJECTIVES: Venous thromboembolism (VTE) provoked by transient risk factors has traditionally been classified as a single entity with lower risk of recurrence. We evaluated the association between different categories of transient provoking factors and the relative risk of recurrence. METHODS: Retrospective evaluation of VTE events in non-cancer patients from July 2011 to December 2012 at two tertiary institutions in Australia with a minimum follow-up of 24 months. RESULTS: A total of 747 VTE cases were identified, and following exclusion of cases with mortality within 30 days of presentation (n=26), unprovoked cases (40.2%) had a higher risk of recurrence (4.6 vs 2.3/100 event-years, P=.01). Provoking factors included surgery (40.4%), injury (16.7%), medical-related factors including non-surgical hospitalisation or active infection (22.0%), travel (13.2%) and oestrogen related (6.5%). Air travel had the highest recurrence rate of 5.9/100 event-years, comparable to unprovoked VTE. VTE provoked by surgery showed lower recurrence rate at 1.8/100 event-years (P=.03). 62.5% of patients with provoked VTE recurred with an unprovoked event. CONCLUSION: Transient provoking factors for VTE are heterogeneous with varying potency and should not be considered a single entity. The high recurrence rate after travel-provoked VTE suggests that it is a "minor," if not negligible provoking factor with higher thrombotic predisposition.
The impact of telephone-delivered cognitive behaviour therapy and befriending on mood disorders in people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: A randomized controlled trial
OBJECTIVES: The main objectives of this pragmatic randomized controlled trial were to investigate the impact of cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) and an active social control (befriending) on depression and anxiety symptoms in people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). METHODS: Eligible participants were randomly allocated to receive eight weekly telephone interventions of CBT (n = 54) or befriending (n = 56). Repeated-measures ANOVA was used to assess changes in scores and Cohen's d was used to assess effect sizes. RESULTS: Significant improvement was observed in anxiety symptoms for the befriending group from baseline (T1) to post-intervention assessment (T2) and to 8-week follow-up assessment (T3), with a small to medium effect size (Cohen's d = 0.3). Significant improvement was noted in depression symptoms from T1 to T2 for both groups, but only the CBT group had a significant difference at T3, with a small to medium effect size (Cohen's d = 0.4). For secondary outcomes, there was a significant change in COPD symptoms from T1 to T2 for the befriending group; however, at T3 this change was no longer significant. Finally, there was a significant change in general self-efficacy for both groups between T1 and T2, and T1 and T3. CONCLUSION: Cognitive behaviour therapy reduced depression symptoms but not anxiety. Befriending reduced depression symptoms in the short term and anxiety symptoms in both the short term and long term. Further research is needed to demonstrate non-inferiority of telephone delivery compared with other formats, and to understand the impact of befriending which has the potential to be a cost-effective support for people with COPD. Statement of contribution What is already known on this subject? Depression and anxiety are common comorbidities in people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Mood disorders are not commonly routinely treated in people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Telephone-administered CBT has been shown to be as effective as face-to-face CBT in reducing depression and anxiety. What does this study add? Telephone-administered CBT can reduce depression symptoms in people with COPD. Telephone-administered befriending can reduce anxiety and depression symptoms in people with COPD. People with COPD who have mood disorders would prefer to have CBT than befriending.