Browsing by Subject "ACQUISITION"

Sort by: Order: Results:

Now showing items 1-20 of 21
  • Radhakrishnan, Dhanya; Shanmukhan, Anju Pallipurath; Kareem, Abdul; Aiyaz, Mohammed; Varapparambathu, Vijina; Toms, Ashna; Kerstens, Merijn; Valsakumar, Devisree; Landge, Amit N.; Shaji, Anil; Mathew, Mathew K.; Sawchuk, Megan G.; Scarpella, Enrico; Krizek, Beth A.; Efroni, Idan; Mähönen, Ari Pekka; Willemsen, Viola; Scheres, Ben; Prasad, Kalika (2020)
    Aerial organs of plants, being highly prone to local injuries, require tissue restoration to ensure their survival. However, knowledge of the underlying mechanism is sparse. In this study, we mimicked natural injuries in growing leaves and stems to study the reunion between mechanically disconnected tissues. We show that PLETHORA (PLT) and AINTEGUMENTA (ANT) genes, which encode stem cell-promoting factors, are activated and contribute to vascular regeneration in response to these injuries. PLT proteins bind to and activate the CUC2 promoter. PLT proteins and CUC2 regulate the transcription of the local auxin biosynthesis gene YUC4 in a coherent feed-forward loop, and this process is necessary to drive vascular regeneration. In the absence of this PLT-mediated regeneration response, leaf ground tissue cells can neither acquire the early vascular identity marker ATHB8, nor properly polarise auxin transporters to specify new venation paths. The PLT-CUC2 module is required for vascular regeneration, but is dispensable for midvein formation in leaves. We reveal the mechanisms of vascular regeneration in plants and distinguish between the wound-repair ability of the tissue and its formation during normal development.
  • Pohjanvirta, Raimo; Mahiout, Selma (2019)
    Previous studies have shown that several aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AHR) agonists, including β-naphthoflavone (BNF), elicit avoidance of novel food items in rodents, with this behavioral response displaying a similar doseresponse to hepatic induction of CYP1A1. The avoidance has been found to bear substantial similarity to conditioned taste avoidance/aversion (CTA). The present study set out to confirm the indispensability of AHR in the avoidance response, to verify whether vagal afferent fibers are involved in it, and to see if AHR signaling might interfere with the effect of the classic trigger of CTA, LiCl. To this end, globally AHR deficient (AHRKO) or vagotomized wildtype rats were treated by gavage with 60 mg/kg BNF or ip with 0.15M LiCl (4 ml/kg), and presented with chocolate which was either novel or familiar to them. Both the avoidance response and Cyp1a1 induction were missing in AHRKO rats. In contrast, Ahr+/− rats exhibited them in full, save for a single outlier. Total subdiaphragmatic vagotomy failed to interfere with the avoidance of novel or familiar chocolate or induction of Cyp1a1. After LiCl administration, male AHRKO rats showed a significantly mitigated suppression of chocolate consumption compared with wildtype animals (~60% vs. ~10% of control chocolate intake, respectively). A similar tendency was seen in females, but they were less responsive to LiCl. These findings corroborate AHR as a prerequisite of the BNF-induced novel food avoidance, prove vagal afferents unlikely mediators of this response, and imply an unforeseen involvement of AHR signaling in the thoroughly-characterized CTA instigated by LiCl.
  • Holopainen, Leena; Kofler, Doris; Koch, Arno; Hakkarainen, Airi; Bauer, Kristin; Taverna, Livia (2020)
    The aim of this study was to use path modelling to establish how rapid automatized naming (RAN), verbal short-term memory (VSTM), letter-sound connection (LSC), phoneme blending (PHB), and Raven tasks predict reading in Finnish and German. Students (N = 769) from Finland, Germany, and Italy (German-speaking children from South Tyrol) were followed from first grade until the end of second grade. Firstly, in all countries, LSC was found to be the strongest predictor for reading in first grade. Secondly, Finnish students' word-reading skills were better than those of German and Italian students throughout the follow-up period, but word-reading level in first grade predicted word-reading level after one year only for Italian and German students. Thirdly, rapid automatized naming (RAN) and verbal short-term memory (VSTM) predicted reading skills in each orthography and country with a different power and at different phases, implying that the educational system also has a role in predicting reading skills.
  • Numminen, Elina; Chewapreecha, Claire; Turner, Claudia; Goldblatt, David; Nosten, Francois; Bentley, Stephen D.; Turner, Paul; Corander, Jukka (2015)
    Streptococcus pneumoniae is a significant human pathogen and a leading cause of infant mortality in developing countries. Considerable global variation in the pneumococcal carriage prevalence has been observed and the ecological factors contributing to it are not yet fully understood. We use data from a cohort of infants in Asia to study the effects of climatic conditions on both acquisition and clearance rates of the bacterium, finding significantly higher transmissibility during the cooler and drier months. Conversely, the length of a colonization period is unaffected by the season. Independent carriage data from studies conducted on the African and North American continents suggest similar effects of the climate on the prevalence of this bacterium, which further validates the obtained results. Further studies could be important to replicate the findings and explain the mechanistic role of cooler and dry air in the physiological response to nasopharyngeal acquisition of the pneumococcus.
  • Kantele, Anu; Lääveri, Tinja; Mero, Sointu; Häkkinen, Inka M. K.; Kirveskari, Juha; Johnston, Brian D.; Johnson, James R. (2020)
    Background. One-third of the 100 million travelers to the tropics annually acquire extended-spectrum beta-lactamase (ESBL)-producing Enterobacteriaceae (ESBL-PE), with undefined clinical consequences. Methods. Symptoms suggesting Enterobacteriaceae infections were recorded prospectively among 430 Finnish travelers, 90 (21%) of whom acquired ESBL-PE abroad. ESBL-PE isolates underwent polymerase chain reaction-based detection of diarrheagenic Escherichia coli (DEC) pathotypes (enteroaggregative E. coli [EAEC], enteropathogenic E. coli [EPEC], enterotoxigenic E. coli [ETEC], enteroinvasive E. coli, and Shiga toxin-producing E. coli), and extraintestinal pathogenic/uropathogenic E. coli (ExPEC/UPEC). Laboratory-confirmed ESBL-PE infections were surveyed 5 years before and after travel. Results. Among the 90 ESBL-PE carriers, manifestations of Enterobacteriaceae infection included travelers' diarrhea (TD) (75/90 subjects) and urinary tract infection (UTI) (3/90). The carriers had 96 ESBL-producing E. coli isolates, 51% exhibiting a molecular pathotype: 13 (14%) were DEC (10 EAEC, 2 EPEC, 1 ETEC) (12 associated with TD) and 39 (41%) ExPEC/UPEC (none associated with UTI). Of ESBL-PE, 3 (3%) were ExPEC/UPEC-EAEC hybrids (2 associated with diarrhea, none with UTI). Potential ESBL-PE infections were detected in 15 of 90 subjects (17%). The 10-year medical record survey identified 4 laboratory-confirmed ESBL-PE infections among the 430 travelers, all in subjects who screened ESBL-PE negative after returning home from their index journeys but had traveled abroad before their infection episodes. Conclusions. Half of all travel-acquired ESBL-producing E. coli strains qualified molecularly as pathogens. Extraintestinal and uropathogenic pathotypes outnumbered enteric pathotypes (41% vs 14%), yet the latter correlated more closely with symptomatic infection (0% vs 92%). Despite more ESBL-PE strains qualifying as ExPEC/UPEC than DEC, travel-acquired ESBL-PE are more often associated with TD than UTI.
  • Välimaa, Taina; Kunnari, Sari; Laukkanen-Nevala, Paivi; Lonka, Eila; Natl Clinical Res Team (2018)
    BackgroundChildren with unilateral cochlear implants (CIs) may have delayed vocabulary development for an extended period after implantation. Bilateral cochlear implantation is reported to be associated with improved sound localization and enhanced speech perception in noise. This study proposed that bilateral implantation might also promote early vocabulary development. Knowledge regarding vocabulary growth and composition in children with bilateral CIs and factors associated with it may lead to improvements in the content of early speech and language intervention and family counselling. AimsTo analyse the growth of early vocabulary and its composition during the first year after CI activation and to investigate factors associated with vocabulary growth. Methods & ProceduresThe participants were 20 children with bilateral CIs (12 boys; eight girls; mean age at CI activation = 12.9 months). Vocabulary size was assessed with the Finnish version of the MacArthur Communicative Development Inventories (CDI) Infant Form and compared with normative data. Vocabulary composition was analysed in relation to vocabulary size. Growth curve modelling was implemented using a linear mixed model to analyse the effects of the following variables on early vocabulary growth: time, gender, maternal education, residual hearing with hearing aids, age at first hearing aid fitting and age at CI activation. Outcomes & ResultsDespite clear vocabulary growth over time, children with bilateral CIs lagged behind their age norms in receptive vocabulary during the first 12 months after CI activation. In expressive vocabulary, 35% of the children were able to catch up with their age norms, but 55% of the children lagged behind them. In receptive and expressive vocabularies of 1-20 words, analysis of different semantic categories indicated that social terms constituted the highest proportion. Nouns constituted the highest proportion in vocabularies of 101-400 words. The proportion of verbs remained below 20% and the proportion of function words and adjectives remained below 10% in the vocabularies of 1-400 words. There was a significant main effect of time, gender, maternal education and residual hearing with hearing aids before implantation on early receptive vocabulary growth. Time and residual hearing with hearing aids had a significant main effect also on expressive vocabulary growth. Conclusions & ImplicationsVocabulary development of children with bilateral CIs may be delayed. Thus, early vocabulary development needs to be assessed carefully in order to provide children and families with timely and targeted early intervention for vocabulary acquisition.
  • Lääveri, Tinja; Vlot, Jessica A.; van Dam, Alje P.; Häkkinen, Hanni K.; Sonder, Gerard J. B.; Visser, Leo G.; Kantele, Anu (2018)
    Background: One third of travellers to low- and middle-income regions of the tropics and subtropics become colonized by extended-spectrum beta-lactamase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (ESBL-PE). The risk varies by destination and, for each traveller, may be substantially further increased by travellers' diarrhoea (TD) and antibiotic use. Despite the risk of TD in Africa, ESBL-PE acquisition rates in all studies are lower there than in Asia. Africa has become increasingly popular as a destination for international travellers, yet minimal data are available from the continent's subregions and countries. Methods: We analysed subregion- and country-specific data on carriage and risk factors for ESBL-PE colonization pooled from three prospective studies conducted between 2009 and 2013 among Finnish and Dutch travellers. The data were subjected to multivariable analysis of risk factors. In addition, we compared our data to two recent large investigations reporting data by subregion and country. Results: Our joint analysis comprised data on 396 travellers. The ESBL-PE colonization rate was highest in Northern Africa, followed by Middle and Eastern Africa, and lowest in Southern and Western Africa. Of individual countries with more than 15 visitors, the highest rates were seen for Egypt (12/17; 70.6%), Ghana (6/23; 26.1%), and Tanzania (14/81; 17.3%); the rates among travellers to Egypt were comparable to those reported in South and Southeast Asia. In a pooled multivariable analysis, travel destination, age, overnight hospitalisation abroad, TD, and use of fluoroquinolones were independently associated with increased ESBL-PE colonization rates. Conlusions: Even in areas with relatively low risk of colonization, antimicrobials clearly predispose to colonization with ESBL-PE. Travellers to Africa should be cautioned against unnecessary use of antibiotics.
  • Partanen, Eino J.; Leminen, Alina; Cook, Clare; Shtyrov, Yury (2018)
    To master linguistic communication, humans must acquire large vocabularies quickly and effortlessly. Efficient word learning might be facilitated by the ability to rapidly acquire novel word forms even outside the focus of attention, occurring within minutes of repetitive exposure and suggesting fast and automatic lexicon acquisition. However, this phenomenon has been studied in the auditory modality only, and it is unknown whether similar mechanisms also exist in the visual domain. We tested this by presenting participants with novel written word forms while the focus of their attention was on a non-linguistic dual colour-detection task. Matched familiar word forms served as a control. Using magnetoencephalography (MEG), we scrutinised changes in neuromagnetic responses to familiar and to novel word forms over approximately 15 minutes of exposure. We found, for the first time, a visual analogue of automatic rapid build-up of neural memory circuits for unattended novel lexical items, seen as a rapid enhancement of early (similar to 100 ms post-onset) activation in the left anterior-superior temporal lobe. Our results suggest that the brain quickly forms cortical representations for new written forms, and indicate that the automatic neural mechanisms subserving rapid online acquisition of novel linguistic information might be shared by both auditory and visual modalities.
  • Kliuchko, Marina; Brattico, Elvira; Gold, Benjamin P.; Tervaniemi, Mari; Bogert, Brigitte; Toiviainen, Petri; Vuust, Peter (2019)
    Learning, attention and action play a crucial role in determining how stimulus predictions are formed, stored, and updated. Years-long experience with the specific repertoires of sounds of one or more musical styles is what characterizes professional musicians. Here we contrasted active experience with sounds, namely long-lasting motor practice, theoretical study and engaged listening to the acoustic features characterizing a musical style of choice in professional musicians with mainly passive experience of sounds in laypersons. We hypothesized that long-term active experience of sounds would influence the neural predictions of the stylistic features in professional musicians in a distinct way from the mainly passive experience of sounds in laypersons. Participants with different musical backgrounds were recruited: professional jazz and classical musicians, amateur musicians and non-musicians. They were presented with a musical multi-feature paradigm eliciting mismatch negativity (MMN), a prediction error signal to changes in six sound features for only 12 minutes of electroencephalography (EEG) and magnetoencephalography (MEG) recordings. We observed a generally larger MMN amplitudes-indicative of stronger automatic neural signals to violated priors-in jazz musicians (but not in classical musicians) as compared to non-musicians and amateurs. The specific MMN enhancements were found for spectral features (timbre, pitch, slide) and sound intensity. In participants who were not musicians, the higher preference for jazz music was associated with reduced MMN to pitch slide (a feature common in jazz music style). Our results suggest that long-lasting, active experience of a musical style is associated with accurate neural priors for the sound features of the preferred style, in contrast to passive listening.
  • Ojanen, Emma; Ronimus, Miia; Ahonen, Timo; Chansa-Kabali, Tamara; February, Pamela; Jere-Folotiya, Jacqueline; Kauppinen, Karri-Pekka; Ketonen, Ritva; Ngorosho, Damaris; Pitkanen, Mikko; Puhakka, Suzanne; Sampa, Francis; Walubita, Gabriel; Yalukanda, Christopher; Pugh, Ken; Richardson, Ulla; Serpell, Robert; Lyytinen, Heikki (2015)
    GraphoGame (GG) is originally a technology-based intervention method for supporting children with reading difficulties. It is now known that children who face problems in reading acquisition have difficulties in learning to differentiate and manipulate speech sounds and consequently, in connecting these sounds to corresponding letters. GG was developed to provide intensive training in matching speech sounds and larger units of speech to their written counterparts. GG has been shown to benefit children with reading difficulties and the game is now available for all Finnish school children for literacy support. Presently millions of children in Africa fail to learn to read despite years of primary school education. As many African languages have transparent writing systems similar in structure to Finnish, it was hypothesized that GG-based training of letter-sound correspondences could also be effective in supporting children's learning in African countries. In this article we will describe how GG has been developed from a Finnish dyslexia prevention game to an intervention method that can be used not only to improve children's reading performance but also to raise teachers' and parents' awareness of the development of reading skill and effective reading instruction methods. We will also provide an overview of the GG activities in Zambia, Kenya, Tanzania, and Namibia, and the potential to promote education for all with a combination of scientific research and mobile learning.
  • Junttila, Katja; Ylinen, Sari (2020)
    To determine the best techniques to teach children foreign words, we compared the effectiveness of four different learning tasks on their foreign-word learning (i.e., learning word forms and word meanings). The tasks included incidental learning, intentional learning with production, intentional learning without production, and crosssituational statistical learning. We also analyzed whether children’s age and cognitive skills correlate with the learning of word forms and word meanings. Forty-four 5–8-yearold children participated in the study. The results reveal that the children were able to learn the correct word forms from all four tasks and no differences emerged between the effectiveness of the tasks on the learning of word-forms. The children also learned the word meanings with all four tasks, yet the intentional task with production was more effectivethantheincidentaltask. Thissuggeststhattheabilityofchildrentolearnforeign words benefited from them knowing that they were supposed to learn new words and producingthemaloudwhiletraining.Theageofthechildrencorrelatedwiththeirlearning results for word forms and meanings on the intentional task without production. The older children learned more effectively than the younger children in this task. Children’s phonological processing skills were correlated with learning the word meanings from the incidental task, suggesting that children with better phonological skills were able to benefit from incidental learning more than children with poorer phonological skills. Altogether, the results suggest that children’s foreign-language learning benefits from intentional training with speech production regardless of their age or cognitive skills.
  • Ryazantseva, Maria; Englund, Jonas; Shintyapina, Alexandra; Huupponen, Johanna; Shteinikov, Vasilii; Pitkänen, Asla; Partanen, Juha M; Lauri, Sari E (2020)
    Perturbed information processing in the amygdala has been implicated in developmentally originating neuropsychiatric disorders. However, little is known on the mechanisms that guide formation and refinement of intrinsic connections between amygdaloid nuclei. We demonstrate that in rodents the glutamatergic connection from basolateral to central amygdala (BLA-CeA) develops rapidly during the first 10 postnatal days, before external inputs underlying amygdala-dependent behaviors emerge. During this restricted period of synaptic development, kainate-type of ionotropic glutamate receptors (KARs) are highly expressed in the BLA and tonically activated to regulate glutamate release via a G-protein-dependent mechanism. Genetic manipulation of this endogenous KAR activity locally in the newborn LA perturbed development of glutamatergic input to CeA, identifying KARs as a physiological mechanism regulating formation of the glutamatergic circuitry in the amygdala.
  • Sinnemäki, Kaius Tatu-Kustaa; Garbo, Francesca Di (2018)
    In this article we evaluate claims that language structure adapts to sociolinguistic environment. We present the results of two typological case studies examining the effects of the number of native (=L1) speakers and the proportion of adult second language (=L2) learners on language structure. Data from more than 300 languages suggest that testing the effect of population size and proportion of adult L2 learners on features of verbal and nominal complexity produces conflicting results on different grammatical features. The results show that verbal inflectional synthesis adapts to the sociolinguistic environment but the number of genders does not. The results also suggest that modeling population size together with proportion of L2 improves model fit compared to modeling them independently of one another. We thus argue that surveying population size alone may be insufficient to detect possible adaptation of linguistic structure to the sociolinguistic environment. Rather, other features, such as proportion of L2 speakers, prestige and social network density, should be studied, and if demographic numeric data are used, they should not be used in isolation but rather in competition with other sociolinguistic features. We also suggest that not all types of language structures within a given grammatical domain are equally sensitive to the effect of sociolinguistic variables, and that more exploratory studies are needed before we can arrive at a reliable set of grammatical features that may be potentially most (and least) adaptive to social structures.
  • Leisti, Tuomas; Häkkinen, Jukka (2018)
    Certain experiments have shown that reasoning may weaken the stability of people's preferences, especially with regard to well-learned perceptual judgment and decision-making tasks, while learning has an opposite, consistency-enhancing effect on preferences. We examined the effects of these factors in a visual multi-attribute decision-making task where reasoning, in contrast, has been found to benefit judgments by making them more stable. The initial assumption in this study was that this benefit would be typical for novel tasks, like the one employed here, and that it would decrease when the task is thoroughly learned. This assumption was examined in three experiments by contrasting it with an alternative assumption that this previously obtained beneficial effect is caused solely by learning, not by reasoning. It was found that learning indeed makes preferences more stable by consolidating the weights of the attributes. Reasoning, however, does not benefit this task when it is completely novel but facilitates learning and stability of the preferences long run, therefore increasing the consistency of the participants in the macrolevel. Copyright (c) 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
  • Nikolaev, Alexandre; Higby, Eve; Hyun, JungMoon; Lehtonen, Minna; Ashaie, Sameer; Hallikainen, Merja; Hänninen, Tuomo; Soininen, Hilkka (2020)
    While cognitive changes in aging and neurodegenerative disease have been widely studied, language changes in these populations are less well understood. Inflecting novel words in a language with complex inflectional paradigms provides a good opportunity to observe how language processes change in normal and abnormal aging. Studies of language acquisition suggest that children inflect novel words based on their phonological similarity to real words they already know. It is unclear whether speakers continue to use the same strategy when encountering novel words throughout the lifespan or whether adult speakers apply symbolic rules. We administered a simple speech elicitation task involving Finnish‐conforming pseudo‐words and real Finnish words to healthy older adults, individuals with mild cognitive impairment, and individuals with Alzheimer's disease (AD) to investigate inflectional choices in these groups and how linguistic variables and disease severity predict inflection patterns. Phonological resemblance of novel words to both a regular and an irregular inflectional type, as well as bigram frequency of the novel words, significantly influenced participants' inflectional choices for novel words among the healthy elderly group and people with AD. The results support theories of inflection by phonological analogy (single‐route models) and contradict theories advocating for formal symbolic rules (dual‐route models).
  • Leminen, Miika; Leminen, Alina; Smolander, Sini; Arkkila, Eva; Shtyrov, Yury; Laasonen, Marja; Kujala, Teija (2020)
    Formation of neural mechanisms for morphosyntactic processing in young children is still poorly understood. Here, we addressed neural processing and rapid online acquisition of familiar and unfamiliar combinations of morphemes. Three different types of morphologically complex words - derived, inflected, and novel (pseudostem + real suffix) - were presented in a passive listening setting to 16 typically developing 3-4-year old children (as part of a longitudinal Helsinki SLI follow-up study). The mismatch negativity (MMN) component of event-related potentials (ERP), an established index of long-term linguistic memory traces in the brain, was analysed separately for the initial and final periods of the exposure to these items. We found MMN response enhancement for the inflected words towards the end of the recording session, whereas no response change was observed for the derived or novel complex forms. This enhancement indicates rapid build-up of a new memory trace for the combination of real morphemes, suggesting a capacity for online formation of whole-form lexicalized representations as one of the morphological mechanisms in the developing brain. Furthermore, this enhancement increased with age, suggesting the development of automatic morphological processing circuits in the age range of 3-4 years.
  • Perez-Lachaud, Gabriela; Jahyny, Benoit J. B.; Ståhls, Gunilla; Rotheray, Graham; Delabie, Jacques H. C.; Lachaud, Jean-Paul (2017)
    The myrmecophile larva of the dipteran taxon Nothomicrodon Wheeler is rediscovered, almost a century after its original description and unique report. The systematic position of this dipteran has remained enigmatic due to the absence of reared imagos to confirm indentity. We also failed to rear imagos, but we scrutinized entire nests of the Brazilian arboreal dolichoderine ant Azteca chartifex which, combined with morphological and molecular studies, enabled us to establish beyond doubt that Nothomicrodon belongs to the Phoridae (Insecta: Diptera), not the Syrphidae where it was first placed, and that the species we studied is an endoparasitoid of the larvae of A. chartifex, exclusively attacking sexual female (gyne) larvae. Northomicrodon parasitism can exert high fitness costs to a host colony. Our discovery adds one more case to the growing number of phorid taxa known to parasitize ant larvae and suggests that many others remain to be discovered. Our findings and literature review confirm that the Phoridae is the only taxon known that parasitizes both adults and the immature stages of different castes of ants, thus threatening ants on all fronts.
  • Mäkelä, Pirjo; Wasonga, Daniel; Solano Hernandez, Ainhoa; Santanen, Arja (2020)
    Phosphorus (P) is an essential element for plant growth and development. Finding new P sources and ways to improve crop P utilization are necessary due to the depletion of phosphate reserves. Five crop species, buckwheat (Fagopyrum esculentumL.), maize (Zea maysL.), oilseed rape (Brassica napusL. ssp.oleifera(Moench) Metzg.), spelt wheat (Triticum speltaL.), and white lupine (Lupinus albusL.), were grown in pots containing sandy soil with chemical nutrients, digestate, and meat bone meal (MBM) without added nutrients. Thirty days after the seeding plants were harvested, the growth stage, soil-plant analysis development (SPAD) value, biomass, P content of the plants, colonization of the roots with endomycorrhiza, and soil pH were analyzed, and the number of fungal spores in the soil was counted. All species showed interaction with the P sources for measured traits, except for the rhizosphere pH. A high biomass was recorded in all species fertilized with various P sources compared to the unfertilized treatment. Buckwheat and spelt wheat showed a higher P uptake with MBM, and the mycorrhizal symbiosis improved with digestate or MBM compared to synthetic P. The results indicate that different species have adaptative mechanisms to various P sources which could improve the resilience and sustainability of cropping systems.
  • Kaltiainen, Janne Petteri; Lipponen, Jukka Mauri Tapani; Holtz, Brian C. (2017)
  • Almeland, Stian Kreken; Lindford, Andrew; Sundhagen, Henriette Pisani; Hufthammer, Karl Ove; Strandenes, Eivind; Svendsen, Henrik Lovendahl; Guttormsen, Anne Berit; Hansson, Emma (2020)
    Background It has been demonstrated that medical students are capable of learning microsurgical techniques. We hypothesize that microsurgical training might give insight into the importance of delicate tissue handling and correct knot tying that could have a positive influence on macrosurgical skills. The primary aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of microsurgical training on macrosurgical suturing skills in novice medical students. Subjects and methods In 2018, 46 novice medical students were enrolled and randomized into two groups. The intervention group received both macro- and microsurgical training and the control group received only microsurgical training. Both groups underwent an assessment test that consisted of macrosurgical tasks of three simple interrupted sutures with a square knot and continuous three-stitch long over-and-over sutures. These tests were individually filmed and assessed using the University of Bergen suturing skills assessment tool (UBAT) and the Objective Structured Assessment of Technical Skill global rating scale (OSATS). Questionnaires regarding future career ambitions and attitudes towards plastic surgery were also completed both prior to and following the tests. Results The intervention group needed a longer time to complete the tasks than the control group (12.2 min vs. 9.6 min, p > 0.001), and scored lower on both the UBAT (5.6 vs. 9.0, p > 0.001) and the OSATS (11.1 vs. 13.1, p > 0.001) assessments. The microsurgery course tended to positively influence the students' attitudes towards a career in plastic surgery (p = 0.002). This study demonstrates poorer macrosurgical skills in the medical students group exposed to microsurgical training. The true effect of microsurgical training warrants further investigation. Level of evidence: Level I, diagnostic study.