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Articles on Neuroscience and Chinese Medicine

Published on: 9 Jun 2022 Viewed: 256

Our staff editors continue to share exciting, interesting, and thought-provoking reading material in the recommended articles series.

This week, we would like to share several latest articles are related to Neuroscience and Chinese Medicine.

Title: 1.08 - Neuroscience for Clinicians: Translational Clinical Neuroscience to Inspire Clinical Practice and Research
Authors: Haolun Li, Philippe Goldin, Greg J. Siegle
Type: Encyclopedia
The goal of this chapter is to illustrate how neuroscience principles and brain circuitry can inform case formulation and communication between clinicians and patients. We provide rationale for incorporating neuroscience into clinical practice, describe brain networks relevant to psychopathology followed by how they may contribute to relevant symptom dimensions and disorders. Finally, we consider ways in which basic information about neural change in treatment can be used to inform clinical practice.
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Title: Chapter 57 - Advances in ethics for the neuroscience agenda
Authors: Iris Coates McCall, Veljko Dubljević
Type: Book Chapter
Critical thinking about ethics in neuroscience can be a powerful force in enabling research and translating results meaningfully for society. In this chapter, we strive to give those new to neuroscience investigation, as well as more experienced investigators, an introduction to the field of neuroethics such that they may begin to incorporate it into their future work from its very inception. We begin with an overview of the regulatory and oversight mechanisms currently in place that guide the ethical conduct of neuroscience research, followed by an introduction to four of the most salient neuroethics topics relevant to neuroscience research—research with animals, data sharing, incidental findings, and neuroscience communication. First, we discuss how upfront consideration of the societal implications of advances in neuroscience can shape the use of animal models. We situate ethical thinking in this era of big science and big data, reflecting on strategies for sharing databases while protecting contributors and users. Next, we highlight how collaboration among neuroscientists, ethicists, and others can produce positive measures to resolve the problem of incidental discoveries in brain imaging research, as one example of debates on incidental findings more broadly. Third, we discuss the importance of effective and responsible communication of neuroscience research and information. Finally, the mandate of neuroscience research as public service and ethical imperative is addressed by describing opportunities for neuroscientists to engage with societal issues emerging from their research and how this deepens the discourse and adds value to the research enterprise.
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Title: Cochrane systematic reviews on traditional Chinese medicine: What matters–the quantity or quality of evidence?
Authors: Zeqi Dai, Xing Liao, L. Susan Wieland, Jing Hu, Yongyan Wang, Tae-Hun Kim, Jian-ping Liu, Siyan Zhan, Nicola Robinson
Type: Research Article
Systematic reviews on traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) are constantly increasing. However, if these reviews are to be of practical value, the evidence needs to be relevant, valid, and adequately reported. Cochrane Systematic Reviews (CSRs) are considered as high-quality systematic reviews that can inform health care decision making. Our aim was to provide an overview of the scope, findings, quality and impact of CSRs on the benefits and harms associated with TCM interventions for the treatment and prevention of disease to provide new information for clinical practice and future research.

The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews was searched up to May 2021, and descriptive characteristics were extracted. The correspondence between the questions asked in the CSRs and the available evidence, conclusions and certainty of findings (according to GRADE assessment), methodological quality (AMSTAR 2), and impact (Altmetric Attention Score [AAS], total citations by guideline, and total citations in Web of Science [WoS]) of CSRs were extracted. Tabular and graphical summaries of these descriptive characteristics were constructed.

Of 104 CSRs on TCM identified, 70 diseases belonged to 16 disease systems and contained 1642 primary studies with 157,943 participants. Interventions included Chinese herbal medicine (n = 70), acupuncture (n = 28), TCM exercises (n = 4), and moxibustion (n = 2). Among 1642 primary studies, 662 studies included an intervention group treated with at least one TCM therapy and 980 studies included a combination of therapies. Promising outcomes from the 104 CSRs were divided into endpoint outcomes (34 diseases), doctor- or patient-reported outcomes (27 diseases), and surrogate outcomes (37 diseases). Despite the presence of promising outcomes, only 5/104 CSRs drew overall positive conclusions, 42 CSRs concluded the evidence was insufficient, and 54 failed to draw firm conclusions. GRADE assessments were reported in 41.3% of the CSRs, and the ratings were mostly low or very low. Comparing the questions asked and results obtained, there was frequently a lack of information about specific outcomes. Only 16 CSRs obtained results for all outcomes listed in the methods section. According to AMSTAR 2, 51 CSRs (49.0%) were of low quality. The total number of citations in the WoS was 2135 (mean ± SD: 20.8 ± 21.2), and 38.5% of the CSRs had been cited in guidelines 95 times.

Although TCM is commonly used, evidence of its effectiveness remains largely inconclusive. Rigorous high-quality trials are needed to support the performance of high-quality reviews and to increase the evidence base. It is critical to emphasize quality over quantity in future TCM research.
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Title: The pooled prevalence of the mental problems of Chinese medical staff during the COVID-19 outbreak: A meta-analysis
Authors: Na Hu, Hu Deng, Hanxue Yang, Chundi Wang, Yonghua Cui, Jingxu Chen, Yanyu Wang, Sushuang He, Jiabao Chai, Fuquan Liu, Pan Zhang, Xue Xiao, Ying Li
Type: Research Article
●Medical staff suffered severe mental problems during the outbreak of COVID-19.
●Anxiety and depression symptoms were more pronounced among front-line medical staff.
●Sleep problems were particularly prominent for medical staff.
●Gender had a significant impact on the sleep of front-line medical staff.
●Providing some suggestions to deal with these problems.
●Some effective measures should be taken to alleviate mental health problems of medical staff.
Background: The COVID-19 pandemic has had a great impact on the mental health of the medical staff in China, especially those on the first-line (frontline) of the pandemic. But the profile of the mental problem of nationwide Chinese medical staff is still unclear, especially about the sleep problems.

Methods: There are five databases (PubMed, Embase, CNKI, Wanfang Database and Web of Science) searched to identify the published studies on the mental health of the medical staff in China during the COVID-19 outbreak. The pooled prevalence of mental problems of Chinese medical staff during the pandemic were calculated, especially for the first-line medical staff. Subgroup analysis and meta-regression analysis were performed to identify the potential impact factors.

Results: A total of 71 articles including 98,533 participants are included in this meta-analysis. The results showed that the pooled prevalence of the mental problems was as follows: anxiety problem 27%, depression problem 29%, sleep problem 40%. Subgroup analysis showed that there were significant differences in the prevalence of anxiety and depression problems between first-line and non-first-line medical staff (p < 0.01). Sex had a significant impact on the sleep of first-line medical staff (p < 0.01).

Limitations: There may be heterogeneity among the included studies. The analysis of potential influencing factors remains limited.

Conclusions: The prevalence of adverse mental problems among medical staff is high during the COVID-19 outbreak. We need to pay special attention to the mental health of first-line medical staff, especially the sleep problems of female first-line workers.
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Title: Verbal learning, working memory, and attention/vigilance may be candidate phenotypes of bipolar II depression in Chinese Han nationality
Authors: Zhizhong Hu, Maorong Hu, Xin Yuan, Huijuan Yu, Jingzhi Zou, Yanyan Zhang, Zihang Lu
Type: Research Article
Bipolar II depression (BD-II) is a subtype of bipolar disorder with recurrent depressive, manic, and frequent depressive episodes as the main clinical manifestations. This study aimed to compare the cognitive function of patients with BD-II with those of healthy siblings and controls to explore the internal phenotype of BD-II in the field of cognitive function.

66 BD-II patients, 58 healthy siblings, and 55 healthy controls were assessed with the Trail Making Test (TMT), Digit Symbol Coding Test (DSCT), Category Fluency, Hopkins Verbal Learning Test-Revised (HVLTR), Brief Visuospatial Memory Test-Revised (BVMT-R), Wechsler Memory Scale 3rd ed. Spatial Span Subtest (WMS-III SS), Neuropsychological Assessment Battery Mazes (NABM), Continuous Performance Test, and Identical Pairs (CPT-IP).

Patients with BD-II showed cognitive deficits in visual learning, reasoning and problem solving, verbal learning, attention/vigilance, working memory, and speed of processing. Healthy siblings showed cognitive deficits in reasoning and problem solving, verbal learning, attention/vigilance, working memory, and speed of processing. Substantial differences were observed among the three groups in reasoning and problem solving.

Verbal learning, working memory, and attention/vigilance may be potential endophenotypes that can be used to identify BD-II among Han Chinese in the early stage.
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