Some drug combinations may be more effective than others for schizophrenic patients

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Feb 21 2019Patients with schizophrenia are often treated with more than one type of psychiatric medication, but a new study suggests that some combinations may be more effective than others.The findings were published in JAMA Psychiatry.Antipsychotic drugs are usually the first line of treatment for individuals with schizophrenia. But because these drugs often fail to control symptoms adequately on their own, doctors often prescribe additional psychiatric medications, such as another antipsychotic, an antidepressant, a benzodiazepine, or a mood stabilizer.”Antipsychotic medications are used to treat psychotic symptoms such as delusions and hallucinations but there is little guidance on what to do for other types of symptoms like depression, anxiety or excitement. Additional medications are often prescribed, but we know little about how different psychiatric drug combinations affect people with schizophrenia,” says T. Scott Stroup, MD, MPH, professor of psychiatry at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons and lead author of the paper. “Until now we have known virtually nothing about how these strategies compare to each other.”Related StoriesStudy: Many patients with schizophrenia and epilepsy die before reaching the age of fiftyExploring how schizophrenia and depression are related to drug consumptionResearch opens up new avenues for understanding the causes of schizophreniaTo find out, the researchers conducted a comparative effectiveness study using Medicaid records of 81,921 adults with schizophrenia who had been taking only an antipsychotic drug for at least 3 months before starting either an antidepressant, benzodiazepine, mood stabilizer, or another antipsychotic drug.The researchers found that individuals with schizophrenia who added an antidepressant were less likely to land in the emergency room or hospital for a mental health issue than those who started another antipsychotic or a benzodiazepine. Antidepressants reduced the risk of hospitalization by 16% compared to antipsychotics and by 22% compared to benzodiazepines. For emergency room visits, antidepressants reduced the risk by 8% compared to antipsychotics and by 18% compared to benzodiazepines.”Our study adds more evidence that benzodiazepine use should be limited and that combining antidepressants with antipsychotic drugs for individuals with schizophrenia may have benefits,” says Stroup. “We still need to know more about when to use antidepressants, which may be useful for conditions other than depression.”Combining medications is often referred to as polypharmacy. “The results of our study should promote rational polypharmacy,” added Stroup. He thinks that clinicians will find the results believable and hopes that they will lead to practice changes and improved patient outcomes.The study is titled, “Comparative Effectiveness of Adjunctive Psychotropic Medications in Patients with Schizophrenia.” Source: read more

New technology will significantly enhance energy harvest from PV modules

first_img Explore further The world is inevitably moving towards a more sustainable lifestyle. Sustainability of the environment requires changes in the current way of life and introduction of new, more sustainable solutions in our everyday consumption. Optiverter, photo by Dmitri Vinnikov. Credit: Dmitri Vinnikov The TalTech Power Electronics Research Group led by Researcher-Professor Dmitri Vinnikov has been working on improvement of the efficiency of alternative energy generation units for over a decade. “In the early years of the alternative energy deployment, it was outrageously expensive for an ordinary consumer, but the developments in recent years, the triumph of materials technology and the efforts of power electronics engineers have made the price much more affordable for the consumers,” Professor Vinnikov says.The research group led by Dmitri Vinnikov is focusing on the research on solar photovoltaic energy production. Under ideal conditions, any photovoltaic system (solar power plant) would supply consumers with electricity without any problems. Unfortunately, at our latitude there are no ideal operating conditions for PV modules. The environmental and natural factors that affect the performance of such systems most are (apart from Nordic sunlight) deposition of dirt (snow, soil, leaves) on PV module surfaces and long shadows created by lower sun angle affect.”In order to convert energy, which comes from the renewable energy sources, into electricity for the consumers, a grid converter must be used, which transforms the output of the renewable energy source into a current suitable for home appliances. In addition to a converter, a special devices called power optimizer must be used to maximize energy harvest so that it would not be influenced by weather and would provide maximum benefit for the consumer,” Dmitri Vinnikov explains. The power electronics researchers of Tallinn University of Technology have taken a step further to solve this problem—they have developed a hybrid technology optiverter that combines the key advantages of photovoltaic power optimizers and grid converters. It is a novel power semiconductor converter technology used in the power systems of small and medium-sized PV installations, and possibly for building integrated PV.The first prototype of the optiverter was created in 2016. After three years of comprehensive R&D activities the research group is planning, in cooperation with the Estonian company Ubik Solutions OÜ, to start mass production of optiverters which are indispensable in residential solar PV systems.”Thanks to the patented multimode control, the input voltage range is up to three times wider compared to commercial competitors. Like the power optimizers of PV modules, the optiverter ensures maximum energy harvest even if a PV module is under heavy or opaque shade, which usually blocks energy production with conventional PV microinverters. This is an advantage that distinguishes it from the current technology available on the market,” Professor Vinnikov says.The scientists estimate the lifespan of the optiverter to be approximately 25 years (the same as the lifespan of a top-grade solar panel). The optiverter has invaluable benefits compared to our current, fossil fuel based energy production. In the long term, the pptiverter technology is not only environmentally friendly but also sustainable.”It is obvious that renewable energy, be it wind energy, biofuel, natural gas or solar energy, is the future,” Professor Vinnikov says. “Even if there weren’t increasingly stringent EU requirements (applied to fuel prices of motor vehicles, but also for instance to construction work and energy production, etc.) to be complied with, life itself would force us to use more sustainable alternative technologies. All this makes the current, conventional energy production increasingly costly, while the PV systems are experiencing incredible cost reduction for the last five years.” Holistic view of planning energy self-sufficient communities This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Provided by Estonian Research Council Citation: New technology will significantly enhance energy harvest from PV modules (2019, June 11) retrieved 17 July 2019 from More information: Dmitri Vinnikov et al, Solar Optiverter—A Novel Hybrid Approach to the Photovoltaic Module Level Power Electronics, IEEE Transactions on Industrial Electronics (2018). DOI: 10.1109/TIE.2018.2850036last_img read more

Maple Leafs William Nylander announces jersey change on social media

first_imgAs the saying goes, what’s old is new again.Which is exactly what William Nylander is aiming for. With a new season just around the corner, the Toronto Maple Leafs’ forward announced on social media Monday he’s switching up his jersey number again. After wearing no. 29 for the last three seasons, he’ll sport no. 88 in 2019-20. The shift again could be a good omen for Nylander. At the 2019 IIHF Men’s World Championship, he sported no. 88 for Sweden where he netted 18 points (five goals, 13 assists) in eight games. He is looking to find his game again after missing the start of last season due to a contract dispute. When he did return, he had seven goals and 20 assists in 54 games. Nylander also wore the number with Modo (SHL) before he played in the NHL. Prior to Nylander, the only Leaf to sport no. 88 was Hall of Famer Eric Lindros in 2005-06. Before fans can get upset about the change, and their no. 29 jersey’s becoming vintage, Nylander has offered to pay for any sweater with the now-old number to be updated at Real Sports Apparel in Toronto.Making the switch … what’s old is new again #88I’ve got you covered Leafs Nation, go to @realsportstoronto to have your jersey recrested on me. William Nylander (@wmnylander) July 15, 2019However, it’s not the first time Nylander has changed numbers. When he first cracked the Leafs’ lineup in 2015, the then-19-year-old wore 39. He also wore 62 with the Toronto Marlies (AHL).last_img read more

Mamata accuses BJP of trying to tarnish West Bengals image

first_imgWest Bengal COMMENT Published on June 11, 2019 West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, on Tuesday, alleged that attempts were being made to defame and tarnish the image of West Bengal.Critical of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the central government, she claimed “a plot was underway to turn the State into Gujarat.” “I respect the Governor but every post has its constitutional limit. Bengal is being defamed. If you want to save Bengal and its culture, come together. There is a conspiracy to forget the rich legacy of Bengal. A plan is being hatched to turn Bengal into Gujarat,” she said at an event in the city where she unveiled a statue of social-reformer Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar. Her gibe at targeting West Bengal Governor Keshari Nath Tripathi came after the latter met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah in Delhi.Tripathi met them on Monday, a day after the Centre issued an advisory to the West Bengal government expressing “deep concern” over the deaths of people in post-poll violence. The BJP won 18 of the 42 seats in the recently concluded Lok Sabha elections, and emerged as the principal opposition to Banerjee’s Trinamool Congress. Banerjee has since then upped the ante in attacking the BJP and the Centre. Inaugurating the bust of Bengali social reformer, Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar, at a city college marks one of the areas in which she is at loggerheads with the BJP. The bust was damaged 27 days ago during a rally by BJP party President Amit Shah. Both TMC and the BJP had accused each other of vandalising the statue. Later, Banerjee while inaugurating ITC’s Royal Bengal Hotel, reiterated the charge that the State was “being deliberately defamed”.Addressing industry captains present at the event, the Chief Minister claimed Bengal was amongst the “most stable States economically”. Moreover, the fact that no man were days lost indicate that there is a “sea change in its work culture” and bandhs were a thing of the past.“Remember what the State was 34 years back; and, what it is now. Politically, you can say anything; but fact is economically we are one of the most stable States across the country,” she said. state politics national politicscenter_img 0 SHARE SHARE EMAIL BJP SHARE COMMENTSlast_img read more