Publications by authors named "G Alexander Jones"

6,364 Publications

Participant Experiences of a Quit Smoking Attempt Through Either Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) Methods or the Use of an E-cigarette.

J Addict Med 2021 Jun 14. Epub 2021 Jun 14.

Academy for Sport and Physical Activity, Health and Wellbeing Department, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, UK (GJ), Lifestyle Exercise and Nutrition Improvement (LENI) Research Group, Department of Nursing and Midwifery, College of Health, Wellbeing and Life Sciences, Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, UK (GJ, EM, MK), Addictions, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King's College London, London, UK and SPECTRUM Research Consortium, UK (LSB).

Objectives: There is a lack of evidence exploring experiences of using e-cigarettes for smoking cessation. The study's main aim was to explore participant experiences of e-cigarettes compared to nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) delivered through stop smoking services.

Methods: Semi-structured, face-to-face, and telephone interviews at 3-month post-quit follow-up in a randomized controlled trial comparing nicotine-containing e-cigarettes, nicotine-free e-cigarettes, and NRT for smoking cessation. N = 17 participants, 9 were male, mean age 44 years, 5 using nicotine-containing e-cigarettes, 7 nicotine-free e-cigarettes, and 5 NRT. Interviews were transcribed and analyzed using thematic analysis.

Results: Two global themes and 5 organizing themes were identified. Global themes included: (1) experiences of e-cigarette and NRT quit aids (e-cigarette positive impact and dilemmas, NRT perceptions and experiences), and (2) key mechanisms to support quit attempt (physical aids, advice and support, feedback and structure). E-cigarettes were viewed with caution, however, generally evaluated positively alongside NRT methods, finding e-cigarettes useful during a quit attempt due to their versatility in application. Nicotine-containing e-cigarettes were favored due to their support with nicotine cravings. Participants were, however, wary of replacing smoking addiction with vaping habit.

Conclusions: Participant e-cigarette experience were generally positive; however, concerns over long-term application were noted. There was a noticeable preference for nicotine-containing e-cigarettes, but further research is required to better understand how nicotine is used in conjunction with e-cigarettes long-term as a quit aid alongside other NRT.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/ADM.0000000000000881DOI Listing
June 2021

Radiogenomic Analysis of Locally Advanced Lung Cancer Based on CT Imaging and Intratreatment Changes in Cell-Free DNA.

Radiol Imaging Cancer 2021 Apr;3(4):e200157

From the Departments of Radiation Oncology (K.J.L., M.N.C., C.D.J., J.W., Y.C., C.W., C.R.K., F.F.Y.), Radiology (K.J.L.), Biostatistics and Bioinformatics (J.G.), and Medicine (A.H.), Duke University School of Medicine, 2301 Erwin Rd, Durham, NC 27710; Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Duke University Pratt School of Engineering, Durham, NC (K.J.L.); Radiology Medical Group of Napa, Napa, Calif (M.N.C.); Department of Radiation Oncology, Columbia University School of Medicine, New York, NY (E.X.); and Inivata, Cambridge, England (G.J.).

The radiologic appearance of locally advanced lung cancer may be linked to molecular changes of the disease during treatment, but characteristics of this phenomenon are poorly understood. Radiomics, liquid biopsy of cell-free DNA (cfDNA), and next-generation sequencing of circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) encode tumor-specific radiogenomic expression patterns that can be probed to study this problem. Preliminary findings are reported from a radiogenomic analysis of CT imaging, cfDNA, and ctDNA in 24 patients (median age, 64 years; range, 49-74 years) with stage III lung cancer undergoing chemoradiation on a prospective pilot study (NCT00921739) between September 2009 and September 2014. Unsupervised clustering of radiomic signatures resulted in two clusters that were associated with ctDNA mutations ( = .03) and changes in cfDNA concentration after 2 weeks of chemoradiation ( = .02). The radiomic features dissimilarity (hazard ratio [HR] = 0.56; = .05), joint entropy (HR = 0.56; = .04), sum entropy (HR = 0.53; = .02), and normalized inverse difference (HR = 1.77; = .05) were associated with overall survival. These results suggest heterogeneous and low-attenuating disease without a detectable ctDNA mutation was associated with early surges of cfDNA concentration in response to therapy and a generally better prognosis. CT-Quantitative, Radiation Therapy, Lung, Computer Applications-3D, Oncology, Tumor Response, Outcomes Analysis Clinical trial registration no. NCT00921739 © RSNA, 2021.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1148/rycan.2021200157DOI Listing
April 2021

Inflammatory signaling mechanisms in bipolar disorder.

J Biomed Sci 2021 Jun 11;28(1):45. Epub 2021 Jun 11.

Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth), 1941 East Road, Houston, TX, 77054, USA.

Bipolar disorder is a decidedly heterogeneous and multifactorial disease, with a high individual and societal burden. While not all patients display overt markers of elevated inflammation, significant evidence suggests that aberrant immune signaling contributes to all stages of the disease, and likely explains the elevated rates of comorbid inflammatory illnesses seen in this population. While individual systems have been intensely studied and targeted, a relative paucity of attention has been given to the interconnecting role of inflammatory signals therein. This review presents an updated overview of some of the most prominent pathophysiologic mechanisms in bipolar disorder, from mitochondrial, endoplasmic reticular, and calcium homeostasis, to purinergic, kynurenic, and hormonal/neurotransmitter signaling, showing inflammation to act as a powerful nexus between these systems. Several areas with a high degree of mechanistic convergence within this paradigm are highlighted to present promising future targets for therapeutic development and screening.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12929-021-00742-6DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8194019PMC
June 2021

Detection of complex DNA in CD34-positive peripheral blood mononuclear cells of asymptomatic tuberculosis contacts: an observational study.

Lancet Microbe 2021 Jun;2(6):e267-e275

Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry, Queen Mary University of London, London, UK.

Background: Haematopoietic stem cells expressing the CD34 surface marker have been posited as a niche for complex bacilli during latent tuberculosis infection. Our aim was to determine whether complex DNA is detectable in CD34-positive peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) isolated from asymptomatic adults living in a setting with a high tuberculosis burden.

Methods: We did a cross-sectional study in Ethiopia between Nov 22, 2017, and Jan 10, 2019. Digital PCR (dPCR) was used to determine whether complex DNA was detectable in PBMCs isolated from 100 mL blood taken from asymptomatic adults with HIV infection or a history of recent household or occupational exposure to an index case of human or bovine tuberculosis. Participants were recruited from HIV clinics, tuberculosis clinics, and cattle farms in and around Addis Ababa. A nested prospective study was done in a subset of HIV-infected individuals to evaluate whether administration of isoniazid preventive therapy was effective in clearing complex DNA from PBMCs. Follow-up was done between July 20, 2018, and Feb 13, 2019. QuantiFERON-TB Gold assays were also done on all baseline and follow-up samples.

Findings: Valid dPCR data (ie, droplet counts >10 000 per well) were available for paired CD34-positive and CD34-negative PBMC fractions from 197 (70%) of 284 participants who contributed data to cross-sectional analyses. complex DNA was detected in PBMCs of 156 of 197 participants with valid dPCR data (79%, 95% CI 74-85). It was more commonly present in CD34-positive than in CD34-negative fractions (154 [73%] of 197 46 [23%] of 197; p<0·0001). Prevalence of dPCR-detected complex DNA did not differ between QuantiFERON-negative and QuantiFERON-positive participants (77 [78%] of 99 79 [81%] of 98; p=0·73), but it was higher in HIV-infected than in HIV-uninfected participants (67 [89%] of 75 89 [73%] of 122, p=0·0065). By contrast, the proportion of QuantiFERON-positive participants was lower in HIV-infected than in HIV-uninfected participants (25 [33%] of 75 73 [60%] of 122; p<0·0001). Administration of isoniazid preventive therapy reduced the prevalence of dPCR-detected complex DNA from 41 (95%) of 43 HIV-infected individuals at baseline to 23 (53%) of 43 after treatment (p<0·0001), but it did not affect the prevalence of QuantiFERON positivity (17 [40%] of 43 at baseline 13 [30%] of 43 after treatment; p=0·13).

Interpretation: We report a novel molecular microbiological biomarker of latent tuberculosis infection with properties that are distinct from those of a commercial interferon-γ release assay. Our findings implicate the bone marrow as a niche for in latently infected individuals. Detection of complex DNA in PBMCs has potential applications in the diagnosis of latent tuberculosis infection, in monitoring response to preventive therapy, and as an outcome measure in clinical trials of interventions to prevent or treat latent tuberculosis infection.

Funding: UK Medical Research Council.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S2666-5247(21)00043-4DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8172384PMC
June 2021

Leaf water δO reflects water vapour exchange and uptake by C and CAM epiphytic bromeliads in Panama.

Funct Plant Biol 2021 Jun;48(7):732-742

Physiological Ecology Group, Department of Plant Sciences, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, CB2 3EA, UK; and Corresponding author. Email:

The distributions of CAM and C3 epiphytic bromeliads across an altitudinal gradient in western Panama were identified from carbon isotope (δ13C) signals, and epiphyte water balance was investigated via oxygen isotopes (δ18O) across wet and dry seasons. There were significant seasonal differences in leaf water (δ18Olw), precipitation, stored 'tank' water and water vapour. Values of δ18Olw were evaporatively enriched at low altitude in the dry season for the C3 epiphytes, associated with low relative humidity (RH) during the day. Crassulacean acid metabolism (CAM) δ18Olw values were relatively depleted, consistent with water vapour uptake during gas exchange under high RH at night. At high altitude, cloudforest locations, C3 δ18Olw also reflected water vapour uptake by day. A mesocosm experiment with Tillandsia fasciculata (CAM) and Werauhia sanguinolenta (C3) was combined with simulations using a non-steady-state oxygen isotope leaf water model. For both C3 and CAM bromeliads, δ18Olw became progressively depleted under saturating water vapour by day and night, although evaporative enrichment was restored in the C3 W. sanguinolenta under low humidity by day. Source water in the overlapping leaf base 'tank' was also modified by evaporative δ18O exchanges. The results demonstrate how stable isotopes in leaf water provide insights for atmospheric water vapour exchanges for both C3 and CAM systems.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/FP21087DOI Listing
June 2021