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Current Epidemiology Reports

Antonella Zanobetti, Marie S O'Neill
Purpose of review: Our goal was to assess current literature and knowledge on associations between characteristics (mean, variability, extremes) of ambient temperatures and human health. We were motivated by concerns that climate change, which operates on a time frame of decades or longer, may influence not only shorter-term associations between weather and health (daily/weekly) but also have enduring implications for population health. We reviewed papers published between 2010 and 2017 on the health effects of longer-term (3 weeks to years) exposures to ambient temperature...
June 2018: Current Epidemiology Reports
Bryan Lau, Catherine Lesko
Purpose of review: The setting of competing risks in which there is an event that precludes the event of interest from occurring is prevalent in epidemiological research. Unless studying all-cause mortality, any study following up individuals is subject to having a competing risk should individuals die during time period that the study covers. While there are prior papers discussing the need for competing risk methods in epidemiologic research, we are not aware of any review that discusses issues of missing data in a competing risk setting...
June 2018: Current Epidemiology Reports
Jonathan I Levy, Lesliam Quirós-Alcalá, M Patricia Fabian, Komal Basra, Nadia N Hansel
Purpose of review: Multiple respiratory diseases, including asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), display significant socioeconomic and racial/ethnic disparities. The objective of this review is to evaluate the evidence supporting a link between disproportionate environmental exposures and these health disparities. Recent findings: Studies suggest that various co-occurring factors related to the home environment, neighborhood environment, non-modifiable individual factors, and individual behaviors and attributes can increase or modify the risk of adverse respiratory outcomes among socioeconomically-disadvantaged and racially/ethnically diverse populations...
June 2018: Current Epidemiology Reports
Tanya L Alderete, Zhanghua Chen, Claudia M Toledo-Corral, Zuelma A Contreras, Jeniffer S Kim, Rima Habre, Leda Chatzi, Theresa Bastain, Carrie V Breton, Frank D Gilliland
Purpose of Review: Diabetes mellitus is a top contributor to the global burden of mortality and disability in adults. There has also been a slow, but steady rise in prediabetes and type 2 diabetes in youth. The current review summarizes recent findings regarding the impact of increased exposure to air pollutants on the type 2 diabetes epidemic. Recent Findings: Human and animal studies provide strong evidence that exposure to ambient and traffic-related air pollutants such as particulate matter (PM), nitrogen dioxide (NO2 ), and nitrogen oxides (NOx ) play an important role in metabolic dysfunction and type 2 diabetes etiology...
June 2018: Current Epidemiology Reports
Alexandra J White, Patrick T Bradshaw, Ghassan B Hamra
Purpose of Review: Breast cancer is the most common cancer diagnosed among US women. Air pollution is a pervasive mixture of chemicals containing carcinogenic compounds and chemicals with endocrine disrupting properties. In the present review, we examine the epidemiologic evidence regarding the association between air pollution measures and breast cancer risk. Recent Findings: We identified seventeen studies evaluating the risk of breast cancer associated with air pollution...
June 2018: Current Epidemiology Reports
Brandon L Pierce, Peter Kraft, Chenan Zhang
Purpose of review: In this paper, we summarize prior studies that have used Mendelian Randomization (MR) methods to study the effects of exposures, lifestyle factors, physical traits, and/or biomarkers on cancer risk in humans. Many such risk factors have been associated with cancer risk in observational studies, and the MR approach can be used to provide evidence as to whether these associations represent causal relationships. MR methods require a risk factor of interest to have known genetic determinants that can be used as proxies for the risk factor (i...
June 2018: Current Epidemiology Reports
Dayna A Johnson, Martha E Billings, Lauren Hale
Purpose of Review: Sleep is important for overall health and well-being. Insufficient sleep and sleep disorders are highly prevalent among adults and children and therefore a public health burden, particularly because poor sleep is associated with adverse health outcomes. Emerging evidence has demonstrated that environmental factors at the household- and neighborhood-level can alter healthy sleep. This paper will (1) review recent literature on the environmental determinants of sleep among adults as well as children and adolescents; and (2) discuss the opportunities and challenges for advancing research on the environment and sleep...
June 2018: Current Epidemiology Reports
Noah Kojima, Jeffrey D Klausner
Purpose of Review: Syphilis continues to cause morbidity and mortality worldwide. While syphilis infection is easily identifiable and treatable, rates of syphilis infection continue to increase among select populations in high-income countries and remain at endemic levels in low- and middle-income counties. Recent findings: World Health Organization recommended strategies have led to the dual elimination of mother-to-child transmission of syphilis and HIV in several countries, however outbreaks among select populations need to be adequately addressed...
March 2018: Current Epidemiology Reports
Mozhu Ding, Chengxuan Qiu
Purpose of Review: Atrial fibrillation (AF) and dementia are both prevalent diseases in aging societies, which exert a great economic burden worldwide. Although a handful of epidemiologic studies have indicated that AF is independently associated with faster cognitive decline and a higher risk of dementia, there is still a lack of comprehensive understanding of the observed association. In this review, we summarize evidence from major epidemiologic studies concerning AF-related cognitive decline and dementia, the potential mechanisms underlying their association, and the cognitive benefits of treatment options...
2018: Current Epidemiology Reports
Jeremy Labrecque, Sonja A Swanson
Purpose of Review: Instrumental variable (IV) methods continue to be applied to questions ranging from genetic to social epidemiology. In the epidemiologic literature, discussion of whether the assumptions underlying IV analyses hold is often limited to only certain assumptions and even then, arguments are mostly made using subject matter knowledge. To complement subject matter knowledge, there exist a variety of falsification strategies and other tools for weighing the plausibility of the assumptions underlying IV analyses...
2018: Current Epidemiology Reports
Aubree Gordon, Arthur Reingold
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
2018: Current Epidemiology Reports
Anurag Verma, Marylyn D Ritchie
Purpose of Review: Over many decades, researchers have been designing studies to investigate the relationship between genotypes and phenotypes to gain an understanding about the effect of genetics on disease. Recently, a high-throughput approach called phenome-wide associations studies (PheWAS) have been extensively used to identify associations between genetic variants and many diseases and traits simultaneously. In this review, we describe the value of PheWAS along with methodological issues and challenges in interpretation for current applications of PheWAS...
December 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Lori C Sakoda, Louise M Henderson, Tanner J Caverly, Karen J Wernli, Hormuzd A Katki
Purpose of review: Risk prediction models may be useful for facilitating effective and high-quality decision-making at critical steps in the lung cancer screening process. This review provides a current overview of published lung cancer risk prediction models and their applications to lung cancer screening and highlights both challenges and strategies for improving their predictive performance and use in clinical practice. Recent findings: Since the 2011 publication of the National Lung Screening Trial results, numerous prediction models have been proposed to estimate the probability of developing or dying from lung cancer or the probability that a pulmonary nodule is malignant...
December 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
John W Jackson, Ian Schmid, Elizabeth A Stuart
Purpose of review: Propensity score methods have become commonplace in pharmacoepidemiology over the past decade. Their adoption has confronted formidable obstacles that arise from pharmacoepidemiology's reliance on large healthcare databases of considerable heterogeneity and complexity. These include identifying clinically meaningful samples, defining treatment comparisons, and measuring covariates in ways that respect sound epidemiologic study design. Additional complexities involve correctly modeling treatment decisions in the face of variation in healthcare practice, and dealing with missing information and unmeasured confounding...
December 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Andrew F Olshan
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
December 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
John G Connolly, Shirley V Wang, Candace C Fuller, Sengwee Toh, Catherine A Panozzo, Noelle Cocoros, Meijia Zhou, Joshua J Gagne, Judith C Maro
Purpose of Review: An important component of the Food and Drug Administration's Sentinel Initiative is the active post-market risk identification and analysis (ARIA) system, which utilizes semi-automated, parameterized computer programs to implement propensity-score adjusted and self-controlled risk interval designs to conduct targeted surveillance of medical products in the Sentinel Distributed Database. In this manuscript, we review literature relevant to the development of these programs and describe their application within the Sentinel Initiative...
December 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Xiaojuan Li, Jessica G Young, Sengwee Toh
Purpose of review: Pharmacoepidemiologists are often interested in estimating the effects of dynamic treatment strategies, where treatments are modified based on patients' evolving characteristics. For such problems, appropriate control of both baseline and time-varying confounders is critical. Conventional methods that control confounding by including time-varying treatments and confounders in an outcome regression model may not have a causal interpretation, even when all baseline and time-varying confounders are measured...
December 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Sengwee Toh
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
December 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Jennifer Anne Doherty, Lauren Cole Peres, Chen Wang, Gregory P Way, Casey S Greene, Joellen M Schildkraut
Purpose of review: Only recently has it become clear that epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) is comprised of such distinct histotypes--with different cells of origin, morphology, molecular features, epidemiologic factors, clinical features, and survival patterns-that they can be thought of as different diseases sharing an anatomical location. Herein, we review opportunities and challenges in studying EOC heterogeneity. Recent findings: The 2014 World Health Organization diagnostic guidelines incorporate accumulated evidence that high- and low-grade serous tumors have different underlying pathogenesis, and that, on the basis of shared molecular features, most high grade tumors, including some previously classified as endometrioid, are now considered to be high-grade serous...
September 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
Cleopatra M Abdou
Purpose of Review: Reproductive health, and pregnancy more specifically, is the first critical link between generations. Beginning with this first critical link, pregnancy acts as a domino, affecting the expression of genes and determining the lifespan mental and physical health and reproductive potential of offspring and, likely, of subsequent generations. Given the powerful intergenerational domino that is pregnancy, the development of innovative models to enhance reproductive health and outcomes is an invaluable public health investment...
June 2017: Current Epidemiology Reports
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