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Radiology Radiology

Functional and structural neuroimaging correlates of repetitive low-level blast exposure in career breachers.

In Journal of neurotrauma

Combat military and civilian law enforcement personnel may be exposed to repetitive low-intensity blast events during training and operations. Individuals who use explosives to gain entry (i.e., breach) into buildings are known as "breachers" or dynamic entry personnel. Breachers operate under the guidance of established safety protocols, but despite these precautions, breachers who are exposed to low-level blast throughout their careers frequently report performance deficits and symptoms to healthcare providers. While little is known about the etiology linking blast exposure to clinical symptoms in humans, animal studies demonstrate network-level changes in brain function, alterations in brain morphology, vascular and inflammatory changes, hearing loss and even alterations in gene expression following repeated blast exposure. To explore whether similar effects occur in humans, we collected a comprehensive data battery from 20 experienced breachers exposed to blast throughout their careers and 14 military and law enforcement controls. This battery included neuropsychological assessments, blood biomarkers, and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) measures, including cortical thickness, diffusion tensor imaging of white matter, functional connectivity, and perfusion. To better understand the relationship between repetitive low-level blast exposure and behavioral and imaging differences in humans, we analyzed the data using symmetric multiview linear reconstruction (SyMLR). SyMLR is specifically designed for multiple modality statistical integration using dimensionality-reduction techniques for studies with high-dimensional, yet sparse data (i.e., low number of subjects and many data per subject). We identify significant group effects in these data spanning brain structure, function, and blood biomarkers.

Stone James R, Avants Brian B, Tustison Nicholas, Wassermann Eric, Gill Jessica, Polejaeva Elena, Dell Kristine C, Carr Walter, Yarnell Angela M, LoPresti Matthew L, Walker Peter B, O’Brien Meghan, Domeisen Natalie, Quick Alycia, Modica Claire M, Hughes John D, Haran Francis Jay, Goforth Carl Weston, Ahlers Stephen



Internal Medicine Internal Medicine

COVID-19 risk and outcomes in patients with substance use disorders: analyses from electronic health records in the United States.

In Molecular psychiatry ; h5-index 103.0

The global pandemic of COVID-19 is colliding with the epidemic of opioid use disorders (OUD) and other substance use disorders (SUD) in the United States (US). Currently, there is limited data on risks, disparity, and outcomes for COVID-19 in individuals suffering from SUD. This is a retrospective case-control study of electronic health records (EHRs) data of 73,099,850 unique patients, of whom 12,030 had a diagnosis of COVID-19. Patients with a recent diagnosis of SUD (within past year) were at significantly increased risk for COVID-19 (adjusted odds ratio or AOR = 8.699 [8.411-8.997], P < 10-30), an effect that was strongest for individuals with OUD (AOR = 10.244 [9.107-11.524], P < 10-30), followed by individuals with tobacco use disorder (TUD) (AOR = 8.222 ([7.925-8.530], P < 10-30). Compared to patients without SUD, patients with SUD had significantly higher prevalence of chronic kidney, liver, lung diseases, cardiovascular diseases, type 2 diabetes, obesity and cancer. Among patients with recent diagnosis of SUD, African Americans had significantly higher risk of COVID-19 than Caucasians (AOR = 2.173 [2.01-2.349], P < 10-30), with strongest effect for OUD (AOR = 4.162 [3.13-5.533], P < 10-25). COVID-19 patients with SUD had significantly worse outcomes (death: 9.6%, hospitalization: 41.0%) than general COVID-19 patients (death: 6.6%, hospitalization: 30.1%) and African Americans with COVID-19 and SUD had worse outcomes (death: 13.0%, hospitalization: 50.7%) than Caucasians (death: 8.6%, hospitalization: 35.2%). These findings identify individuals with SUD, especially individuals with OUD and African Americans, as having increased risk for COVID-19 and its adverse outcomes, highlighting the need to screen and treat individuals with SUD as part of the strategy to control the pandemic while ensuring no disparities in access to healthcare support.

Wang Quan Qiu, Kaelber David C, Xu Rong, Volkow Nora D


Surgery Surgery

Surgical Video Motion Magnification with Suppression of Instrument Artefacts

ArXiv Preprint

Video motion magnification could directly highlight subsurface blood vessels in endoscopic video in order to prevent inadvertent damage and bleeding. Applying motion filters to the full surgical image is however sensitive to residual motion from the surgical instruments and can impede practical application due to aberration motion artefacts. By storing the temporal filter response from local spatial frequency information for a single cardiovascular cycle prior to tool introduction to the scene, a filter can be used to determine if motion magnification should be active for a spatial region of the surgical image. In this paper, we propose a strategy to reduce aberration due to non-physiological motion for surgical video motion magnification. We present promising results on endoscopic transnasal transsphenoidal pituitary surgery with a quantitative comparison to recent methods using Structural Similarity (SSIM), as well as qualitative analysis by comparing spatio-temporal cross sections of the videos and individual frames.

Mirek Janatka, Hani J. Marcus, Neil L. Dorward, Danail Stoyanov


Radiology Radiology

The effect of coronary calcification on diagnostic performance of machine learning-based CT-FFR: a Chinese multicenter study.

In European radiology ; h5-index 62.0

OBJECTIVE : To investigate the effect of coronary calcification morphology and severity on the diagnostic performance of machine learning (ML)-based coronary CT angiography (CCTA)-derived fractional flow reserve (CT-FFR) with FFR as a reference standard.

METHODS : A total of 442 patients (61.2 ± 9.1 years, 70% men) with 544 vessels who underwent CCTA, ML-based CT-FFR, and invasive FFR from China multicenter CT-FFR study were enrolled. The effect of calcification arc, calcification remodeling index (CRI), and Agatston score (AS) on the diagnostic performance of CT-FFR was investigated. CT-FFR ≤ 0.80 and lumen reduction ≥ 50% determined by CCTA were identified as vessel-specific ischemia with invasive FFR as a reference standard.

RESULTS : Compared with invasive FFR, ML-based CT-FFR yielded an overall sensitivity of 0.84, specificity of 0.94, and accuracy of 0.90 in a total of 344 calcification lesions. There was no statistical difference in diagnostic accuracy, sensitivity, or specificity of CT-FFR across different calcification arc, CRI, or AS levels. CT-FFR exhibited improved discrimination of ischemia compared with CCTA alone in lesions with mild-to-moderate calcification (AUC, 0.89 vs. 0.69, p < 0.001) and lesions with CRI ≥ 1 (AUC, 0.89 vs. 0.71, p < 0.001). The diagnostic accuracy and specificity of CT-FFR were higher than CCTA alone in patients and vessels with mid (100 to 299) or high (≥ 300) AS.

CONCLUSION : Coronary calcification morphology and severity did not influence diagnostic performance of CT-FFR in ischemia detection, and CT-FFR showed marked improved discrimination of ischemia compared with CCTA alone in the setting of calcification.

KEY POINTS : • CT-FFR provides superior diagnostic performance than CCTA alone regardless of coronary calcification. • No significant differences in the diagnostic performance of CT-FFR were observed in coronary arteries with different coronary calcification arcs and calcified remodeling indexes. • No significant differences in the diagnostic accuracy of CT-FFR were observed in coronary arteries with different coronary calcification score levels.

Di Jiang Meng, Zhang Xiao Lei, Liu Hui, Tang Chun Xiang, Li Jian Hua, Wang Yi Ning, Xu Peng Peng, Zhou Chang Sheng, Zhou Fan, Lu Meng Jie, Zhang Jia Yin, Yu Meng Meng, Hou Yang, Zheng Min Wen, Zhang Bo, Zhang Dai Min, Yi Yan, Xu Lei, Hu Xiu Hua, Yang Jian, Lu Guang Ming, Ni Qian Qian, Zhang Long Jiang


Calcium, Computed tomography angiography, Coronary disease, Data accuracy, Ischemia

General General

A Genetic Attack Against Machine Learning Classifiers to Steal Biometric Actigraphy Profiles from Health Related Sensor Data.

In Journal of medical systems ; h5-index 48.0

In this work, we propose the use of a genetic-algorithm-based attack against machine learning classifiers with the aim of 'stealing' users' biometric actigraphy profiles from health related sensor data. The target classification model uses daily actigraphy patterns for user identification. The biometric profiles are modeled as what we call impersonator examples which are generated based solely on the predictions' confidence score by repeatedly querying the target classifier. We conducted experiments in a black-box setting on a public dataset that contains actigraphy profiles from 55 individuals. The data consists of daily motion patterns recorded with an actigraphy device. These patterns can be used as biometric profiles to identify each individual. Our attack was able to generate examples capable of impersonating a target user with a success rate of 94.5%. Furthermore, we found that the impersonator examples have high transferability to other classifiers trained with the same training set. We also show that the generated biometric profiles have a close resemblance to the ground truth profiles which can lead to sensitive data exposure, like revealing the time of the day an individual wakes-up and goes to bed.

Garcia-Ceja Enrique, Morin Brice, Aguilar-Rivera Anton, Riegler Michael Alexander


Biometric profiles, Genetic algorithms, Impersonator attack, Machine learning

General General

Sustaining Attention for a Prolonged Duration Affects Dynamic Organizations of Frequency-Specific Functional Connectivity.

In Brain topography

Sustained attention encompasses a cascade of fundamental functions. The human ability to implement a sustained attention task is supported by brain networks that dynamically formed and dissolved through oscillatory synchronization. The decrement of vigilance induced by prolonged task engagement affects sustained attention. However, little is known about which stage or combinations are affected by vigilance decrement. Here, we applied an analysis framework composed of weighted phase lag index (wPLI) and tensor component analysis (TCA) to an EEG dataset collected during 80 min sustained attention task to examine the electrophysiological basis of such effect. We aimed to characterize the phase-coupling networks to untangle different phases involved in sustained attention and study how they are modulated by vigilance decrement. We computed the time-frequency domain wPLI from each block and subject and constructed a fourth-order tensor, containing the time, frequency, functional connectivity (FC), and blocks × subjects. This tensor was subjected to the TCA to identify the interacted and low-dimensional components representing the frequency-specific dynamic FC (fdFC). We extracted four types of neuromakers during a sustained attention task, namely the pre-stimulus alpha right-lateralized parieto-occipital FC, the post-stimulus theta fronto-parieto-occipital FC, delta fronto-parieto-occipital FC, and beta right/left sensorimotor FCs. All these fdFCs were impaired by vigilance decrement. These fdFCs, except for the beta left sensorimotor network, were restored by rewards, although the restoration by reward in the beta right sensorimotor network was transient. These findings provide implications for dissociable effects of vigilance decrement on sustained attention by utilizing the tensor-based framework.

Liu Jia, Zhu Yongjie, Sun Hongjin, Ristaniemi Tapani, Cong Fengyu


Frequency-specific dynamic functional connectivity, Motivation, Sustained attention, Tensor component analysis, Vigilance decrement, Weighted phase lag index