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McAlaney J.,Bournemouth University | McAlaney J.,University of Bradford | Helmer S.M.,Leibniz Institute for Prevention Research and Epidemiology BIPS | Stock C.,University of Southern Denmark | And 13 more authors.
Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs | Year: 2015

Objective: The objective of this study was to explore perceptions of peer substance use and related attitudes among European students. Challenging perceptions about peer substance use has become the basis of a form of prevention and intervention known as the social norms approach, which can be delivered using personalized online feedback. This article reports baseline alcohol use and attitudes data for university students across Europe collected as part of the Social Norms Intervention for the prevention of Polydrug usE project (Project SNIPE). Method: Students from universities in Belgium, Denmark, Germany, the Slovak Republic, Spain, Turkey, and the United Kingdom were recruited to take part in an online survey by the use of email invitations, social media, classroom announcements, flyers, and stalls in social areas, such as in cafeterias and bars on campus. A total of 4,482 students agreed to participate. Results: Overall, respondents reported both perceived alcohol use and perceived acceptance of alcohol use among their peers that were higher than their own use or acceptance. Perceived peers’ behaviors and attitudes were found to be predictive of personal behaviors and attitudes, with some variation across countries and by sex. Conclusions: The results suggest that students at the participating institutions across selected European countries exhibit overall similar patterns of perceptions as have been found on American college campuses. In conjunction with the finding that the perceived norm is predictive of personal behavior and attitudes, this research provides support to the view that the social norms approach may be a viable method to reduce alcohol consumption among students at European universities. © 2015, Alcohol Research Documentation Inc. All rights reserved. Source

Ghorbani Saeedian R.,University of P.J. Safarik | Nagyova I.,University of P.J. Safarik | Krokavcova M.,Safarik University | Skorvanek M.,University of P.J. Safarik | And 6 more authors.
Disability and Rehabilitation | Year: 2014

Purpose: To explore how social support is associated with anxiety and depression in Parkinson's disease (PD) patients controlling for gender, disease duration and disease severity.Methods: The sample consisted of 124 patients (52.4% male; mean age 68.1 ± 8.4 years; mean disease duration 6.3 ± 5.5 years). Anxiety and depression were measured with the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, social support with the Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support and disease severity with the Unified Parkinson Disease Rating Scale. Data were analyzed using linear regression.Results: Gender, disease duration, disease severity and social support explained 31% of the total variance in anxiety in younger PD patients but did not significantly contribute to the explanation of depression. In the older group, this model explained 41% of the variance in depression but did not significantly contribute to the explanation of anxiety.Conclusion: PD patients experience the positive influence of social support differently according to age. In the younger group, disease duration plays the primary role regarding anxiety. In the older group, poor social support especially from friends is associated with more depression after controlling for the relevant variables.Implications of RehabilitationPD is a disease of older age with a neurodegenerative character and treatment should focus on increasing quality of life.Anxiety and depression are common co-morbidities in PD patients.The support network should also be screened regularly and involved in enhancing the quality of life. © 2014 Informa UK Ltd. Source

Stock C.,University of Southern Denmark | McAlaney J.,University of Bradford | Pischke C.,Leibnitz Institute for Prevention Research and Epidemiology BIPS | Vriesacker B.,University of Antwerp | And 9 more authors.
Scandinavian Journal of Public Health | Year: 2014

Background: The Social Norms Approach, with its focus on positive behaviour and its consensus orientation, is a health promotion intervention of relevance to the context of a Health Promoting University. In particular, the approach could assist with addressing excessive alcohol consumption. Aim: This article aims to discuss the link between the Social Norms Approach and the Health Promoting University, and analyse estimations of peer alcohol consumption among European university students. Methods: A total of 4392 students from universities in six European countries and Turkey were asked to report their own typical alcohol consumption per day and to estimate the same for their peers of same sex. Students were classified as accurate or inaccurate estimators of peer alcohol consumption. Socio-demographic factors and personal alcohol consumption were examined as predictors for an accurate estimation. Results: 72% of male and 51% of female students were identified as having accurate estimations about the amount of alcoholic drinks consumed per day by their peers. Male students, older students, those studying year 3 and above, and Turkish and Danish students were more likely to accurately estimate their peers' alcohol consumption. Independent from these factors, students' accurate estimation of peers' drinking decreased significantly with increasing personal consumption. Conclusions: As accurate estimates of peer alcohol consumption appear to affect personal drinking behaviour positively, Social Norms interventions targeted at correcting possible misperceptions about peer alcohol use among students may be a useful health promotion tool in the context of a Health Promoting University. © 2014 the Nordic Societies of Public Health. Source

Strojny L.,Safarik University in Kosice | Bomba A.,Safarik University in Kosice | Hijova E.,Safarik University in Kosice | Chmelarova A.,Safarik University in Kosice | And 6 more authors.
Czech Journal of Animal Science | Year: 2011

Effects of the probiotic (PRO) Lactobacillus plantarum and of the combination of PRO and the prebiotic (PRE) inulin enriched with oligofructose (2%), and PRO with Lini oleum virginale (O) on counts of lactobacilli and coliforms and enzymatic activities in faeces of rats were studied. The rats (n = 60) were divided into 5 groups of 12 subjects. The animals were fed on a high fat diet (10%) for 8 weeks of experiment. Colon cancer was induced by the application of 1,2-dimethylhydrazine (DMH) twice a week in a dose of 20 mg/kg s.c. in groups G2-G5. The rats in group 1 (control 1) received a diet without any supplements. The rats in group 2 (control 2) received 1,2 DMH without any supplements. The rats in group 3 received PRO, group 4 PRO and PRE, and group 5 received PRO and O. A significant decrease (P < 0.05) of coliforms was found out after the application of PRO, PRO-O, and PRO-PRE in comparison with control group G2. Significantly higher (P < 0.05) counts of lactobacilli were determined after the application of PRO-O and PRO-PRE. Significantly lower (P < 0.001) activities of β-galactosidase, β-glucuronidase and α-glucosidase were observed in PRO, PRO-PRE and PRO-O, while in the case of the enzyme β-glucosidase the activity was lower only after the addition of PRO-O. The protective effect of lactobacilli was observed in the order PRO-O, PRO-PRE, and PRO. It was shown that combinations of PRO-O and PRO-PRE had a synergistic effect which was higher than the effect of administering only PRO. Source

Andrejccaronakova Z.,University of Veterinary Medicine in Kosice | Petrilla V.,University of Veterinary Medicine in Kosice | Tomeckova V.,Safarik University in Kosice | Toth S.,Safarik University in Kosice | And 7 more authors.
Spectroscopy Letters | Year: 2015

A novel approach to the study of venoms characterizes and compares the venom structure of genus Dendroaspis presented in this work. The complex molecular structure of individual venoms of genus Dendroaspis was defined graphically as a record of synchronous fluorescence fingerprint and atomic force microscopy. Simple comparison of these methods mentioned above of individual analyzed venom samples will immediately reveal changes in each venom composition. Application of these methods with electrophoresis and total protein concentration are new alternatives that were used for monitoring venom composition in selected snakes. Electrophoretogram of black mamba with very low content of total proteins contained the largest number of separated fractions, whereas synchronous fluorescence analysis showed that the highest endogenous fluorescence was found in the venom of black mamba compared with the venom of green mambas, respectively. Our results confirmed different molecular structure in the venom of the genus Dendroaspis. The practical advantages of the selected techniques are high sensitivity and minimal quantity of venom required for the assay. These novel methods show that the least toxic Dendroaspis intermedius contained the greatest amount of proteins contrary to Dendroaspis polylepis with a considerably lower content of proteins but the highest toxic bioactivity. Copyright © 2015 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC. Source

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