Biomedical Physiology and Kinesiology, Department of

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Total and High Molecular Weight Adiponectin and Ethnic-Specific Differences in Adiposity and Insulin Resistance: A Cross-Sectional Study

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2013
Abstract: 

Background

Ethnic-specific differences in insulin resistance (IR) are well described but the underlying mechanisms are unknown. Adiponectin is an insulin sensitizing adipocytokine that circulates as multiple isoforms, with high molecular weight (HMW) adiponectin associated with greatest insulin sensitivity. The objective of this study is to determine if plasma total and HMW adiponectin concentrations underlie ethnic-specific differences in IR.

Methods

Healthy Canadian Aboriginal, Chinese, European, and South Asian adults (N = 634) were assessed for sociodemographics; lifestyle; fasting plasma insulin, glucose, and total and HMW adiponectin; and adiposity measures [BMI, waist circumference, waist-to-hip ratio, percent body fat, and subcutaneous and visceral adipose tissue (quantified by computed tomography)]. The homeostasis model assessment-insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) assessed IR.

Results

South Asians had the greatest HOMA-IR, followed by Aboriginals, Chinese, and Europeans (P < 0.001). Plasma total and HMW adiponectin concentrations were lower in Chinese and South Asians than Aboriginal and Europeans (P < 0.05). Total and HMW adiponectin were inversely associated with HOMA-IR (P < 0.001). Ethnicity modified the relationship between HMW adiponectin and HOMA-IR with stronger effects observed in Aboriginals (P = 0.001), Chinese (P = 0.002), and South Asians (P = 0.040) compared to Europeans. This was not observed for total adiponectin (P = 0.431). At mean total adiponectin concentrations South Asians had higher HOMA-IR than Europeans (P < 0.001).

Conclusions

For each given decrease in HMW adiponectin concentrations a greater increase in HOMA-IR is observed in Aboriginals, Chinese, and South Asians than Europeans. Ethnic-specific differences in HMW adiponectin may account for differences in IR.

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Article
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The Perspectives of Educators, Regulators And Funders Of Massage Therapy On The State Of The Profession In British Columbia, Canada

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2013
Abstract: 

Background

Registered Massage Therapists (RMTs) are valuable members of the healthcare team who assist in health promotion, disease prevention, treatment, rehabilitation and palliation. RMT visits have increased across Canada over the past decade with the highest increase in British Columbia (BC). Currently, RMTs are private practitioners of healthcare operating within a largely publicly funded system, positioning them outside of the dominant system of healthcare and making them an important case study in private healthcare. In another paper we examined the perspectives of RMTs themselves. Here, we offer perspectives of regulators, educators and funders of Massage Therapy (MT) on advancement of the profession.

Methods

We interviewed 28 stakeholders of MT in BC – including members of the MT regulatory board, representatives from MT colleges in BC and public and private health insurers.

Results

All three groups identified research, particularly on efficacy of MT, as playing a vital role in enhancing the professional credibility of MT. However, participants noted that presently research is not a large feature of the current MT curricula and we analyze why this may be and how it can improve. Finally, conferral of baccalaureate degree status could assist RMTs in gaining recognition with the general public and other healthcare professionals.

Conclusion

RMTs have potential to ameliorate population health in a cost-effective manner. Their role in British Columbia’s healthcare landscape could be expanded if they produce more research and earn degree status.

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Article
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Association Of Supermarket Characteristics With The Body Mass Index Of Their Shoppers

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2013
Abstract: 

Background

Research on the built food environment and weight status has mostly focused on the presence/absence of food outlets while ignoring their internal features or where residents actually shop. We explored associations of distance travelled to supermarkets and supermarket characteristics with shoppers’ body mass index (BMI).

Methods

Shoppers (n=555) of five supermarkets situated in different income areas in the city were surveyed for food shopping habits, demographics, home postal code, height and weight. Associations of minimum distance to a supermarket (along road network, objectively measured using ArcGIS), its size, food variety and food basket price with shoppers’ BMI were investigated. The ‘food basket’ was defined as the mixture of several food items commonly consumed by residents and available in all supermarkets.

Results

Supermarkets ranged in total floor space (7500–135 000 square feet) and had similar varieties of fruits, vegetables and cereals. The majority of participants shopped at the surveyed supermarket more than once per week (mean range 1.2 ± 0.8 to 2.3 ± 2.1 times per week across the five supermarkets, p < 0.001), and identified it as their primary store for food (52% overall). Mean participant BMI of the five supermarkets ranged from 23.7 ± 4.3 kg/m2 to 27.1 ± 4.3 kg/m2 (p < 0.001). Median minimum distance from the shoppers’ residence to the supermarket they shopped at ranged from 0.96 (0.57, 2.31) km to 4.30 (2.83, 5.75) km (p < 0.001). A negative association was found between food basket price and BMI. There were no associations between BMI and minimum distance to the supermarket, or other supermarket characteristics. After adjusting for age, sex, dissemination area median individual income and car ownership, BMI of individuals who shopped at Store 1 and Store 2, the supermarkets with lowest price of the ‘food basket’, was 3.66 kg/m2 and 3.73 kg/m2 higher compared to their counterparts who shopped at the supermarket where the ‘food basket’ price was highest (p < 0.001).

Conclusions

The food basket price in supermarkets was inversely associated with BMI of their shoppers. Our results suggest that careful manipulation of food prices may be used as an intervention for decreasing BMI.

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Article
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Statistical Validation Of Wavelet Transform Coherence Method To Assess The Transfer Of Calf Muscle Activation To Blood Pressure During Quiet Standing

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2013
Abstract: 

Background

Continuous and discrete wavelet transforms have been established as valid tools to analyze non-stationary and transient signals over Fourier domain methods. Additionally, Fourier transform based coherence methods provide aggregate results but do not provide insights into the changes in coherent behavior over time, hence limiting their utility.

Methods

Statistical validation of the wavelet transform coherence (WTC) was conducted with simulated data sets. Time frequency maps of signal coherence between calf muscle electromyography (EMG) and blood pressure (BP) were obtained by WTC to provide further insight into their interdependent time-varying behavior via the skeletal muscle pump during quiet stance. Data were collected from healthy young males (n = 5, 19–28 years) during a quiet stance on a balance platform. Waveforms for EMG and BP were acquired and processed for further analysis.

Results

Low values of bias and standard deviation (< 0.1) were observed and the use of both simulated and real data demonstrated that the WTC method was able to identify time points of significant coherence (> Threshold) and objectively detect existence of interdependent activity between the calf muscle EMG and blood pressure.

Conclusions

The WTC method effectively identified the presence of linear coupling between the EMG and BP signals during quiet standing. Future studies with more human data are needed to establish the exact characteristics of the identified relationship.

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Article
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Inherited Common Variants In Mitochondrial DNA And Invasive Serous Epithelial Ovarian Cancer Risk

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2013
Abstract: 

Background

Mitochondria are the site of oxidative phosphorylation, a process which generates reactive oxygen species (ROS). Elevated ROS levels can lead to oxidative stress, a cellular state implicated in carcinogenesis. It is hypothesized that alternations in mitochondrial (MT) DNA, including heritable MT single nucleotide polymorphisms (MT-SNPs), have the potential to change the capacity of MT function, leading to increased oxidative stress and cancer risk. We investigated if common MT-SNPs and/or haplogroups and are associated with invasive serous ovarian cancer (OvCa) risk.

Methods

A panel of 64 MT-SNPs designed to tag all common variation in the European MT genome (minor allele frequency (MAF) >1%, r^2 >0.8) was genotyped in study participants of European descent using the Sequenom MassARRAY iPlex Gold® system (Sequenom Inc, CA, USA). Invasive serous OvCa cases (n = 405) and frequency age-matched controls (n = 445) were drawn from a population-based case-control study of OvCa in western Canada. Binary logistic regression was used to estimate the odds ratio (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (C.I.) for carriage of the minor versus major allele by case-control status. MitoTool was used to test the relationship between European haplogroup status and case-control status using Fisher’s exact test.

Results

The most significant disease-SNP association was for rs2857285, a synonymous MT-SNP in ND4 (OR = 4.84, 95% CI: 1.03–22.68, P = 0.045). After adjustment for multiple testing using a Bonferroni correction of the Type 1 error this MT-SNP was not significant. No other MT-SNP had a P-value < 0.05. European haplogroup status was not associated with case status. Most MT-SNPs (73%) genotyped had a MAF <5%.

Conclusion

Common European MT-SNPs (MAF > 5%) and haplogroups were not associated with invasive serous OvCa risk in this study; however, most European MT-SNPs have a low MAF (<5%), which we were underpowered to adequately assess. Larger studies are needed to clarify the role of low MAF MT-SNPs (MAF < 5%) in invasive serous OvCa risk.

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Article
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Estimating Changes In Metabolic Power From EMG

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2013
Abstract: 

Metabolic rates can increase 21 times above resting levels during cycling with the majority attributed to muscular contractions. Metabolic estimates attained through gas exchange parameters are limited by the respiration rate and time delay with respect to these contractions. In contrast surface electromyography (EMG) contains instantaneous muscle contraction information at higher temporal resolutions. An adequate metabolic power-EMG relationship has not been established to use EMG as a metabolic estimate during dynamic activities. The purpose of this study was to establish a metabolic power-EMG relationship during non steady-state conditions. Participants cycled at workloads between 25 and 90% O2max while EMG and gas exchange were monitored. The EMG was resolved into intensities and total EMG intensity was calculated as the sum of intensities across all muscles for each pedal cycle. Metabolic power was estimated from gas exchange parameters and the mean total EMG intensity between breaths was calculated and used as breath-by-breath values. Comparisons were made between breath-by-breath resolutions of metabolic power and total EMG intensity. Different weighting coefficients were also applied to the EMG for each muscle to analyze the effects of different muscle weightings on metabolic power estimations. There was a significant correlation (r = 0.91) between estimates of metabolic power from EMG and gas exchange. Muscle weighting had a significant effect on metabolic power determination with the highest and lowest correlated estimates having the largest weightings on muscles proximal and distal to the knee respectively. This study demonstrates that EMG contains important information about the metabolic costs of muscle contractions and provides good predictions of metabolic changes during non steady-state conditions. Also, the importance of each muscle is workload dependent with inappropriate weightings reducing metabolic estimations. These findings have implications for future EMG applications as they provide more immediate, higher temporal resolution predictions of changes in metabolic power.

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Article
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Differences In Perceptions And Fast Food Eating Behaviours Between Indians Living In High- And Low-Income Neighbourhoods Of Chandigarh, India

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2013
Abstract: 

Increased density of fast food restaurants is associated with increased prevalence of obesity in developed countries. However, less is known about this relationship in developing countries undergoing rapid urbanization and how differences in neighbourhood income affect the patronage of fast food outlets. The purpose of the study is to explore the differences in fast food preferences, perceptions, and patronage between Indians living in high- and low-income neighbourhoods.METHODS:This cross-sectional study recruited 204 men and women (35 to 65 years in age) from high- and low-income neighbourhoods who completed a questionnaire on fast food consumption. The questionnaire asked participants to define fast food and to provide reasons for and frequency of visits to fast food restaurants. The differences were analyzed using Chi square and t-tests for categorical and continuous variables, respectively.RESULTS:Participants from a high-income neighbourhood were more likely to perceive Western -style fast food as fast food, while people from the low-income neighbourhood were more likely to identify food sold by street vendors as fast food (p <0.001). Furthermore, compared to participants from the high-income neighbourhood, people from the low-income neighbourhood were more likely to report buying food from street vendors while less likely to dine out at both fast food and non-fast food restaurants (p<0.001). Although the high-income neighbourhood group was more likely to report enjoying eating at fast food restaurants than their low-income neighbourhood counterparts, there were no significant differences in the reasons for visiting fast food restaurants (convenience, price, social enjoyment, and quality of meals) between the two groups. Both groups preferred home cooked over restaurant meals, and they recognized that home cooked food was healthier.CONCLUSIONS:Overall, consumption of fast food was low. People from a high-income neighbourhood dined out more frequently and were more likely to perceive Western-style food as fast food compared to their counterparts from the low-income neighbourhood.

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Article
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Myelosuppressive Conditioning Using Busulfan Enables Bone Marrow Cell Accumulation in the Spinal Cord of a Mouse Model of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2013
Abstract: 

Myeloablative preconditioning using irradiation is the most commonly used technique to generate rodents having chimeric bone marrow, employed for the study of bone marrow-derived cell accumulation in the healthy and diseased central nervous system. However, irradiation has been shown to alter the blood-brain barrier, potentially creating confounding artefacts. To better study the potential of bone marrow-derived cells to function as treatment vehicles for neurodegenerative diseases alternative preconditioning regimens must be developed. We treated transgenic mice that over-express human mutant superoxide dismutase 1, a model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, with busulfan to determine whether this commonly used chemotherapeutic leads to stable chimerism and promotes the entry of bone marrow-derived cells into spinal cord. Intraperitoneal treatment with busulfan at 60 mg/kg or 80 mg/kg followed by intravenous injection of green fluorescent protein-expressing bone marrow resulted in sustained levels of chimerism (~80%). Bone marrow-derived cells accumulated in the lumbar spinal cord of diseased mice at advanced stages of pathology at both doses, with limited numbers of bone marrow derived cells observed in the spinal cords of similarly treated, age-matched controls; the majority of bone marrow-derived cells in spinal cord immunolabelled for macrophage antigens. Comparatively, significantly greater numbers of bone marrow-derived cells were observed in lumbar spinal cord following irradiative myeloablation. These results demonstrate bone marrow-derived cell accumulation in diseased spinal cord is possible without irradiative preconditioning.

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Article
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Genetic Variation in Cell Death Genes and Risk of Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2012
Abstract: 

Background

Non-Hodgkin lymphomas are a heterogeneous group of solid tumours that constitute the 5th highest cause of cancer mortality in the United States and Canada. Poor control of cell death in lymphocytes can lead to autoimmune disease or cancer, making genes involved in programmed cell death of lymphocytes logical candidate genes for lymphoma susceptibility.

Materials and Methods

We tested for genetic association with NHL and NHL subtypes, of SNPs in lymphocyte cell death genes using an established population-based study. 17 candidate genes were chosen based on biological function, with 123 SNPs tested. These included tagSNPs from HapMap and novel SNPs discovered by re-sequencing 47 cases in genes for which SNP representation was judged to be low. The main analysis, which estimated odds ratios by fitting data to an additive logistic regression model, used European ancestry samples that passed quality control measures (569 cases and 547 controls). A two-tiered approach for multiple testing correction was used: correction for number of tests within each gene by permutation-based methodology, followed by correction for the number of genes tested using the false discovery rate.

Results

Variant rs928883, near miR-155, showed an association (OR per A-allele: 2.80 [95% CI: 1.63–4.82]; pF = 0.027) with marginal zone lymphoma that is significant after correction for multiple testing.

Conclusions

This is the first reported association between a germline polymorphism at a miRNA locus and lymphoma.

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Article
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Are Compression Stockings an Effective Treatment for Orthostatic Presyncope?

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Date created: 
2011
Abstract: 

Syncope, or fainting, affects approximately 6.2% of the population, and is associated with significant comorbidity. Many syncopal events occur secondary to excessive venous pooling and capillary filtration in the lower limbs when upright. As such, a common approach to the management of syncope is the use of compression stockings. However, research confirming their efficacy is lacking. We aimed to investigate the effect of graded calf compression stockings on orthostatic tolerance.

Document type: 
Article