Rett syndrome (RS) is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder characterised by normal neurological development followed by progressive developmental regression. The X-linked dominant inheritance of RS has been mapped to the gene that encodes the methyl-CpG-binding protein-2 (MECP2) at Xq28. In the present study, denaturing high-performance liquid chromatography (DHPLC) was used to detect mutations in the MECP2 gene in 20 Malaysian RS patients.
PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to determine the association between cigarette smoking and the severity of primary angle closure glaucoma (PACG) in Malay patients residing in Malaysia.
METHODS: A cross-sectional study was conducted involving 150 Malay PACG patients between April 2014 and August 2016. Ocular examination was performed including Humphrey visual field (HVF) 24-2 analysis assessment. On the basis of the 2 consecutive reliable HVFs, the severity of glaucoma was scored according to modified Advanced Glaucoma Intervention Study (AGIS) by 2 masked investigators and classified as mild, moderate, and severe. Those with retinal diseases, neurological diseases, memory problem, and myopia ≥4 diopters were excluded. Their smoking status and details were obtained by validated questionnaire from Singapore Malay Eye Study (SiMES). The duration of smoking, number of cigarettes per day, and pack/year was also documented. Multiple linear regression analysis was conducted.
RESULTS: There was a significant association between education level and severity of PACG (P=0.001). However, there was no significant association between cigarette smoking and severity of glaucoma (P=0.080). On the basis of multivariate analysis, a linear association was identified between cigarette smoked per day (adjusted b=0.73; 95% CI: 0.54, 1.45; P<0.001) and body mass index (adjusted b=0.32; 95% CI: 0.07, 1.35; P=0.032) with AGIS score.
CONCLUSIONS: There was no significant association between cigarette smoking and severity of PACG. Cigarette smoked per day among the smokers was associated with severity of PACG. However, because of the detrimental effect of smoking, cessation of smoking should be advocated to PACG patients.
In Amazonian tropical forests, recent studies have reported increases in aboveground biomass and in primary productivity, as well as shifts in plant species composition favouring fast-growing species over slow-growing ones. This pervasive alteration of mature tropical forests was attributed to global environmental change, such as an increase in atmospheric CO2 concentration, nutrient deposition, temperature, drought frequency, and/or irradiance. We used standardized, repeated measurements of over 2 million trees in ten large (16-52 ha each) forest plots on three continents to evaluate the generality of these findings across tropical forests. Aboveground biomass increased at seven of our ten plots, significantly so at four plots, and showed a large decrease at a single plot. Carbon accumulation pooled across sites was significant (+0.24 MgC ha(-1) y(-1), 95% confidence intervals [0.07, 0.39] MgC ha(-1) y(-1)), but lower than reported previously for Amazonia. At three sites for which we had data for multiple census intervals, we found no concerted increase in biomass gain, in conflict with the increased productivity hypothesis. Over all ten plots, the fastest-growing quartile of species gained biomass (+0.33 [0.09, 0.55] % y(-1)) compared with the tree community as a whole (+0.15 % y(-1)); however, this significant trend was due to a single plot. Biomass of slow-growing species increased significantly when calculated over all plots (+0.21 [0.02, 0.37] % y(-1)), and in half of our plots when calculated individually. Our results do not support the hypothesis that fast-growing species are consistently increasing in dominance in tropical tree communities. Instead, they suggest that our plots may be simultaneously recovering from past disturbances and affected by changes in resource availability. More long-term studies are necessary to clarify the contribution of global change to the functioning of tropical forests.