Publications by authors named "Caroline Griffith"

5 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Evaluation of a Common Internal Standard Material to Reduce Inter-Laboratory Variation and Ensure the Quality, Safety and Efficacy of Expanded Newborn Screening Results When Using Flow Injection Analysis Tandem Mass Spectrometry with Internal Calibration.

Int J Neonatal Screen 2020 Nov 19;6(4). Epub 2020 Nov 19.

Department of Medical Biochemistry, Immunology & Toxicology, University Hospital Wales, Cardiff CF14 4XW, UK.

In 2015, the newborn screening (NBS) programmes in England and Wales were expanded to include four additional disorders: Classical Homocystinuria, Isovaleric Acidemia, Glutaric Aciduria Type 1 and Maple Syrup Urine Disease, bringing the total number of analytes quantified to eight: phenylalanine, tyrosine, leucine, methionine, isovalerylcarnitine, glutarylcarnitine, octanoylcarnitine and decanoylcarnitine. Post-implementation, population data monitoring showed that inter-laboratory variation was greater than expected, with 90th centiles varying from 17 to 59%. We evaluated the effect of stable isotope internal standard (IS) used for quantitation on inter-laboratory variation. Four laboratories analysed routine screening samples ( > 101,820) using a common IS. Inter-laboratory variation was determined for the eight analytes and compared with results obtained using an in-house common IS ( > 102,194). A linear mixed-effects model was fitted to the data. Using a common IS mix reduced the inter-laboratory variation significantly ( < 0.05) for five analytes. For three analytes, the lack of significance was explained by use of individual laboratory "calibration factors". For screening programmes where laboratories adhere to single analyte cut-off values (COVs), it is important that inter-laboratory variation is minimised, primarily to prevent false positive results. Whilst the use of a common IS helps achieve this, it is evident that instrument set-up also contributes to inter-laboratory variation.
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November 2020

User Experiences of Social Support From Companion Chatbots in Everyday Contexts: Thematic Analysis.

J Med Internet Res 2020 03 6;22(3):e16235. Epub 2020 Mar 6.

Lake Forest College, Lake Forest, IL, United States.

Background: Previous research suggests that artificial agents may be a promising source of social support for humans. However, the bulk of this research has been conducted in the context of social support interventions that specifically address stressful situations or health improvements. Little research has examined social support received from artificial agents in everyday contexts.

Objective: Considering that social support manifests in not only crises but also everyday situations and that everyday social support forms the basis of support received during more stressful events, we aimed to investigate the types of everyday social support that can be received from artificial agents.

Methods: In Study 1, we examined publicly available user reviews (N=1854) of Replika, a popular companion chatbot. In Study 2, a sample (n=66) of Replika users provided detailed open-ended responses regarding their experiences of using Replika. We conducted thematic analysis on both datasets to gain insight into the kind of everyday social support that users receive through interactions with Replika.

Results: Replika provides some level of companionship that can help curtail loneliness, provide a "safe space" in which users can discuss any topic without the fear of judgment or retaliation, increase positive affect through uplifting and nurturing messages, and provide helpful information/advice when normal sources of informational support are not available.

Conclusions: Artificial agents may be a promising source of everyday social support, particularly companionship, emotional, informational, and appraisal support, but not as tangible support. Future studies are needed to determine who might benefit from these types of everyday social support the most and why. These results could potentially be used to help address global health issues or other crises early on in everyday situations before they potentially manifest into larger issues.
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March 2020

Effect of blood volume on analytical bias in dried blood spots prepared for newborn screening external quality assurance.

Bioanalysis 2020 Jan 19;12(2):99-109. Epub 2019 Dec 19.

Newborn Screening Laboratories Network, Newborn Screening Laboratory, Birmingham Children's Hospital, Birmingham, UK.

Dried blood spots (DBS) are used for the analysis of more than 2000 biomarkers. We assessed a range of analyte concentrations and diameters of DBS. DBS samples were created by the application of increasing volumes of whole blood prepared by the UK NEQAS Quality Assurance Laboratory. Samples were analyzed in four separate laboratories. Volumes less than 25 μl (8 mm) and more than 75 μl (14 mm) created unsatisfactory analytical biases. Results obtained from peripheral subpunches tended to be higher than those from a central subpunch. DBS diameters formed from nonvolumetric application of blood to filter paper can be used to assess whether measurement bias will be within acceptable limits according to the analyte being quantified. DBS received for newborn screening in the UK with diameters less than 8 mm and those more than 14 mm should be rejected.
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January 2020

The President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief: from successes of the emergency response to challenges of sustainable action.

Health Aff (Millwood) 2012 Jul;31(7):1380-8

Duke University, Durham, NC, USA.

The President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) has made a major contribution to the reduction of the global HIV/AIDS burden. The program initially focused on rapidly scaling up treatment and prevention services in fifteen low-income countries, then transitioned to an approach that emphasizes sustainability, defined as the capacity to maintain program services after financial, managerial, and technical assistance from the United States and other external donors essentially ceases. Today, PEPFAR continues to expand its HIV prevention, treatment, and care activities while also supporting capacity-building initiatives, coordination efforts, and implementation science. The latter is research focused on improving service delivery, maximizing cost-effectiveness, and achieving public health impact. Recent advances in both scientific knowledge and the provision of prevention, treatment, and care services have bred cautious optimism about greatly reducing the spread of HIV. However, success will require a substantial increase in resources, strengthened health systems, renewed commitment to HIV prevention, and well-financed efforts to develop an effective HIV vaccine.
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July 2012

Choline for diagnosis and prognostication of acute coronary syndromes in the Emergency Department.

Clin Chim Acta 2009 Jun 31;404(2):89-94. Epub 2009 Mar 31.

Emergency Department, Manchester Royal Infirmary, Oxford Road, Manchester, M13 9WL, United Kingdom.

Objectives: Choline has been identified as a promising marker of coronary inflammation, plaque destabilisation and ischaemia. We sought to evaluate plasma choline levels for rapid confirmation or exclusion of acute myocardial infarction (AMI) in the Emergency Department (ED) and for predicting major adverse cardiac events (MACE).

Methods: We prospectively recruited 361 patients who presented to the ED with suspected cardiac chest pain within the previous 24 h. Blood was drawn at the time of presentation for plasma choline levels. All patients underwent troponin T testing > or = 12 h after symptom onset and were followed up for the occurrence of MACE within 6 months. Whole blood choline (WBCho) levels were also measured in a convenience sample of 39 patients.

Results: Plasma choline levels did not help to predict a diagnosis of AMI (odds ratio (OR) 1.00 (95% confidence intervals (CI) 0.91-1.10, p = 0.98). For a diagnosis of AMI the area under the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve was 0.48. Plasma choline was not predictive of the combined endpoint of MACE (OR 1.03, 95% CI 0.95-1.12, p = 0.45) but predicted AMI within 6 months (OR 1.31, 95% CI 1.09-1.56, p = 0.003). WBCho levels were significantly different to plasma levels and were predictive of MACE.

Conclusions: Plasma choline, measured at the time of ED presentation, is not a diagnostic marker of AMI but predicts AMI within 6 months. While plasma choline failed to predict MACE, WBCho was predictive and warrants further evaluation.
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June 2009