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Beaverton, Oregon, United States

A study protocol is presented for the investigation of meditative movement (MM) as a treatment for pulmonary dysfunction in flight attendants (FA) who were exposed to second-hand cigarette smoke while flying before the smoking ban. The study will have three parts, some of which will run concurrently. The first is a data gathering and screening phase, which will gather data on pulmonary and other aspects of the health of FA, and will also serve to screen participants for the other phases. Second is an exercise selection phase, in which a variety of MM exercises will be taught, over a 16-week period, to a cohort of 20 FA. A subset of these exercises will be selected on the basis of participant feedback on effectiveness and compliance. Third is a 52-week randomized controlled trial to evaluate the effectiveness of a digitally delivered form of the previously selected exercises on a group of 20 FA, as compared with an attention control group. Outcome measures to be used in all three parts of the study include the 6-min walk test as a primary measure, as well as a range of biomarkers, tests, and questionnaires documenting hormonal, cardio-respiratory, autonomic, and affective state. This study is registered at ClinicalTrials.gov. Identifier: NCT02612389. © 2016 Payne, Zava, Fiering and Crane-Godreau.


Guillermo C.J.,University of Nevada, Las Vegas | Manlove H.A.,University of Nevada, Las Vegas | Gray P.B.,University of Nevada, Las Vegas | Zava D.T.,ZRT Laboratory | Marrs C.R.,University of Nevada, Las Vegas
BMC Women's Health | Year: 2010

Background: Although research suggests that socio-sexual behavior changes in conjunction with the menstrual cycle, several potential factors are rarely taken into consideration. We investigated the role of changing hormone concentrations on self-reported physical discomfort, sleep, exercise and socio-sexual interest in young, healthy women.Methods: Salivary hormones (dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate-DHEAS, progesterone, cortisol, testosterone, estradiol and estriol) and socio-sexual variables were measured in 20 women taking oral contraceptives (OC group) and 20 not using OCs (control group). Outcome measures were adapted from questionnaires of menstrual cycle-related symptoms, physical activity, and interpersonal relations. Testing occurred during menstruation (T1), mid-cycle (T2), and during the luteal phase (T3). Changes in behavior were assessed across time points and between groups. Additionally, correlations between hormones and socio-behavioral characteristics were determined.Results: Physical discomfort and sleep disturbances peaked at T1 for both groups. Exercise levels and overall socio-sexual interest did not change across the menstrual cycle for both groups combined. However, slight mid-cycle increases in general and physical attraction were noted among the control group, whereas the OC group experienced significantly greater socio-sexual interest across all phases compared to the control group. Associations with hormones differed by group and cycle phase. The estrogens were correlated with socio-sexual and physical variables at T1 and T3 in the control group; whereas progesterone, cortisol, and DHEAS were more closely associated with these variables in the OC group across test times. The direction of influence further varies by behavior, group, and time point. Among naturally cycling women, higher concentrations of estradiol and estriol are associated with lower attraction scores at T1 but higher scores at T3. Among OC users, DHEAS and progesterone exhibit opposing relationships with attraction scores at T1 and invert at T3.Conclusions: Data from this study show no change across the cycle in socio-sexual interest among healthy, reproductive age women but higher social and physical attraction among OC users. Furthermore, a broader range of hormones may be associated with attraction than previously thought. Such relationships differ by use of oral contraceptives, and may either reflect endogenous hormone modulation by OCs and/or self-selection of sexually active women to practice contraceptive techniques. © 2010 Guillermo et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


Larkin E.K.,Vanderbilt University | Gebretsadik T.,Vanderbilt University | Koestner N.,Vanderbilt University | Newman M.S.,ZRT Laboratory | And 5 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2011

Background: The ability to measure 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25OHD) levels from blood spot cards can simplify sample collection versus samples obtained by venipuncture, particularly in populations in whom it is difficult to draw blood. We sought to validate the use of blood spot samples for the measurement of 25OHD compared to serum or whole blood samples and correlate the measured levels with intake estimated from dietary recall. Methods: Utilizing 109 biological mothers of infants enrolled in the Tennessee Children's Respiratory Initiative cohort, we measured 25OHD levels through highly selective liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry on samples from blood spot cards, serum, and whole blood collected at enrollment. Dietary questionnaires (n = 65) were used to assess 25OHD intake by dietary recall. Sample collection measures were assessed for agreement and 25OHD levels for association with dietary 25OHD intake. Results: The mean absolute differences (95%CI) in 25OHD levels measured between whole blood and blood spot (n = 50 pairs) or serum and blood spot (n = 20) were 3.2 (95%CI:1.6, 4.8) ng/ml and 1.5 (95%CI:-0.5,3.4) ng/mL. Intake by dietary recall was marginally associated with 25OHD levels after adjustment for current smoking and race in linear regression. Discussion: 25OHD levels determined by mass spectrometry from blood spot cards, serum and whole blood show relatively good agreement, although 25OHD levels are slightly lower when measured by blood spot cards. Blood spot samples are a less invasive means of obtaining 25OHD measurements, particularly in large population-based samples, or among children when venipuncture may decrease study participation. © 2011 Larkin et al.


Kerr D.C.R.,Oregon State University | Zava D.T.,ZRT Laboratory | Piper W.T.,New York University | Saturn S.R.,Oregon State University | And 2 more authors.
Psychiatry Research | Year: 2015

There have been few studies of whether vitamin D insufficiency is linked with depression in healthy young women despite women's high rates of both problems. Female undergraduates (n=185) living in the Pacific Northwest during fall, winter, and spring academic terms completed the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression (CES-D) scale weekly for 4 weeks (W1-W5). We measured serum levels of vitamin D3 and C (ascorbate; as a control variable) in blood samples collected at W1 and W5. Vitamin D insufficiency (<30ng/mL) was common at W1 (42%) and W5 (46%), and rates of clinically significant depressive symptoms (CES-D≥16) were 34-42% at W1-W5. Lower W1 vitamin D3 predicted clinically significant depressive symptoms across W1-W5 (β=-0.20, p<0.05), controlling for season, BMI, race/ethnicity, diet, exercise, and time outside. There was some evidence that lower levels of depressive symptoms in Fall participants (vs. Winter and Spring) were explained by their higher levels of vitamin D3. W1 depressive symptoms did not predict change in vitamin D3 levels from W1 to W5. Findings are consistent with a temporal association between low levels of vitamin D and clinically meaningful depressive symptoms. The preventive value of supplementation should be tested further. © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.


Dimitrakakis C.,U.S. National Institutes of Health | Dimitrakakis C.,National and Kapodistrian University of Athens | Zava D.,ZRT Laboratory | Marinopoulos S.,National and Kapodistrian University of Athens | And 3 more authors.
BMC Cancer | Year: 2010

Background: Correlation between circulating sex steroid levels and breast cancer has been controversial, with measurement of free, or bioavailable hormone rarely available. Salivary hormone levels represent the bioavailable fraction. To further elucidate the role of endogenous hormones in breast cancer, we aimed to assess correlation between salivary sex steroid levels and breast cancer prevalence.Methods: Salivary hormone levels of testosterone (T), Estradiol (E2), Progesterone (P), Estriol (E3), Estrone (E1), DHEAS and Cortisol (C) were measured by Enzyme Immunoassay (EIA) in 357 women with histologically verified breast cancer and 184 age-matched control women.Results: Salivary T and DHEAS levels were significantly lower in breast cancer cases vs. controls (27.2+13.9 vs. 32.2+17.5 pg/ml, p < 0.001 for T and 5.3+4.3 vs. 6.4+4.5 ng/ml, p = 0.007 for DHEAS). E2 and E1 levels were elevated and E3 levels were lowered in cases vs. controls.Conclusions: Salivary T levels, representing the bioavailable hormone, are significantly lower in women with breast cancer compared to age-matched control women. These findings support the protective role of biovailable testosterone in counteracting the proliferative effects of estrogens on mammary tissue. © 2010 Dimitrakakis et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

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