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Columbia, SC, United States

Columbia International University is a Christian institution of higher education located in Columbia, South Carolina. As a biblical university, CIU is a fully accredited institution recognized for its emphasis upon spiritual formation, biblical authority and world evangelization. Through its expanding number of liberal arts programs and its historically strong Bible and ministry programs, CIU seeks to meet the challenges of the 21st century both in the United States and abroad by producing “professional ministers” such as pastors, and "ministering professionals” such as teachers, psychologists and business professionals. CIU achieves this through the practice of “total life training” which engages the head, the heart, and the hands, what they call their "educational triad”: 1) Head – Strive for academic excellence with the Bible at the core of all learning; 2) Heart – Grow in maturity in Christ; 3) Hands – Practice skills related to personal and vocational goals in the community away from the classroom. Wikipedia.

Siraj A.S.,University of Denver | Santos-Vega M.,University of Michigan | Bouma M.J.,London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine | Yadeta D.,Oromia Regional Health Bureau | And 3 more authors.

The impact of global warming on insect-borne diseases and on highland malaria in particular remains controversial. Temperature is known to influence transmission intensity through its effects on the population growth of the mosquito vector and on pathogen development within the vector. Spatiotemporal data at a regional scale in highlands of Colombia and Ethiopia supplied an opportunity to examine how the spatial distribution of the disease changes with the interannual variability of temperature. We provide evidence for an increase in the altitude of malaria distribution in warmer years, which implies that climate change will, without mitigation, result in an increase of the malaria burden in the densely populated highlands of Africa and South America. Source

Blavatskyy P.,University of Zurich | Pogrebna G.,Columbia International University
Theory and Decision

In the television show Deal or No Deal, a contestant is endowed with a sealed box containing a monetary prize between one cent and half a million euros. In the course of the show, the contestant is offered to exchange her box for another sealed box with the same distribution of possible monetary prizes inside. This offers a unique natural experiment for studying endowment effects under high monetary incentives. We find evidence of only a weak endowment effect when contestants exchange their box for another box with the same distribution of possible prizes. © 2009 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. Source

Shaman J.,Columbia University | Jeon C.Y.,Columbia International University | Giovannucci E.,Boston University | Lipsitch M.,Boston Dynamics

Seasonal variation in serum concentration of the vitamin D metabolite 25(OH) vitamin D [25(OH)D], which contributes to host immune function, has been hypothesized to be the underlying source of observed influenza seasonality in temperate regions. The objective of this study was to determine whether observed 25(OH)D levels could be used to simulate observed influenza infection rates. Data of mean and variance in 25(OH)D serum levels by month were obtained from the Health Professionals Follow-up Study and used to parameterize an individual-based model of influenza transmission dynamics in two regions of the United States. Simulations were compared with observed daily influenza excess mortality data. Best-fitting simulations could reproduce the observed seasonal cycle of influenza; however, these best-fit simulations were shown to be highly sensitive to stochastic processes within the model and were unable consistently to reproduce observed seasonal patterns. In this respect the simulations with the vitamin D forced model were inferior to similar modeling efforts using absolute humidity and the school calendar as seasonal forcing variables. These model results indicate it is unlikely that seasonal variations in vitamin D levels principally determine the seasonality of influenza in temperate regions. © 2011 Shaman et al. Source

Wood S.L.R.,Columbia International University | Rhemtulla J.M.,University of British Columbia | Coomes O.T.,McGill University
Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment

Farmers are under ever growing pressure to increase productivity to meet both food and fibre needs, as well as rising household economic demands. In many shifting cultivation systems, farmers are taking advantage of restorative forest fallow periods to plant commercially-oriented orchards to increase output. While there is an economic benefit to this intensification pathway, we ask: what are the trade-offs in ecosystem services with planting low diversity orchards? We compare the capacity of native forest fallows vs. planted umarí orchards (. Poraquieba sericea) to provide critical regulating services (soil fertility regeneration, woody biomass accumulation), provisioning services (commercial fruit production, timber, charcoal, wild fruits and handicraft materials production), and tree biodiversity in lowland forests of Peru. In addition, we estimate their potential contribution to farmer livelihoods to better understand the economic incentives behind orchard planting. Orchards were found to provide similar or higher levels of both regulating and provisioning services than forest fallows, apart from harvestable timber. Although biodiversity was lower under orchards, tree diversity and composition recovered fully in subsequent fallow rotations. Potential revenues from orchard planting were greater than from fallows, however they were small compared to median incomes suggesting that the motivation to plant orchards is income diversification. Together these results highlight that orchard fallows may be an ecologically and economically viable pathway for intensification. © 2015 Elsevier B.V. Source

Pevzner E.S.,Centers for Disease Control and Prevention | Vandebriel G.,Columbia International University | Lowrance D.W.,Centers for Disease Control and Prevention | Gasana M.,Rwanda Biomedical Center | Finlay A.,Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
BMC Public Health

Background: In 2005, Rwanda drafted a national TB/HIV policy and began scaling-up collaborative TB/HIV activities. Prior to the scale-up, we evaluated existing TB/HIV practices, possible barriers to policy and programmatic implementation, and patient treatment outcomes. We then used our evaluation data as a baseline for evaluating the national scale-up of collaborative TB/HIV activities from 2005 through 2009. Methods. Our baseline evaluation included a cross-sectional evaluation of 23/161 TB clinics. We conducted structured interviews with patients and clinic staff and reviewed TB registers and patient records to assess HIV testing practices, provision of HIV care and treatment for people with TB that tested positive for HIV, and patients' TB treatment outcomes. Following our baseline evaluation, we used nationally representative TB/HIV surveillance data to monitor the scale-up of collaborative TB/HIV activities. Results: Of 207 patients interviewed, 76% were offered HIV testing, 99% accepted, and 49% reported positive test results. Of 40 staff interviewed, 68% reported offering HIV testing to 50% of patients. From 2005-2009, scaled-up TB/HIV activities resulted in increased HIV testing of patients with TB (69% to 97%) and provision of cotrimoxazole (15% to 92%) and antiretroviral therapy (13% to 49%) for patients with TB disease and HIV infection (TB/HIV). The risk of death among patients with TB/HIV relative to patients with TB not infected with HIV declined from 2005 (RR = 6.1, 95%CI 2.6, 14.0) to 2007 (RR = 1.8, 95%CI 1.68, 1.94). Conclusions: Our baseline evaluation highlighted that staff and patients were receptive to HIV testing. However, expanded access to testing, care, and treatment was needed based on the proportion of patients with TB having unknown HIV status and the high rate of HIV infection and poorer TB treatment outcomes for patients with TB/HIV. Following our evaluation, scale-up of TB/HIV services resulted in almost all patients with TB knowing their HIV status. Scale-up also resulted in dramatic increases in the uptake of lifesaving HIV care and treatment coinciding with a decline in the risk of death among patients with TB/HIV. © 2011 Pevzner et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Source

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