Our previous study showed that A2 allele of dopamine D2(DRD2)Taql A polymorphism related to smoking habits, which was opposed to the results of studies for Caucasians.In order to confirm our finding, a similar study was conducted for the first-visit outpatients of Aichi Cancer Center Hospital, who participated in HERPACC-II(Hospital-based Epidemiologic Research Program at Aichi Cancer Center II).Among consecutive 1, 577 first-visit patients between November 2000 and February 2001, 800 patients provided a 7m1 of peripheral blood.Smoking habit data were available for 798 participants. Excluding five participants aged < 20 years or ≥080 years, the remaining 793 participants(346 males and 447 females)were analyzed.The DRD2 genotype was determined by a new method, polymerase chain reaction with confronting two-pair primers(PCR-CTPP).In males, current smokers were 35.3% of individuals with A1A1 genotype, 43.1% of individuals with A1A2 genotype, and 57.0% of individuals with A2A2 genotype, while in females, they were 19.6%, 14.6%, and 10.9%, respectively.Age-adjusted odds ratio(OR)of current smoking relative to A1A1 was 1.61(95% confidence interval, 0.71-3.46)for A1A2 and 2.32(1.02-5.29)for A2A2 in males, and 0.72(0.32-1.61)and 0.51(0.22-1.18)in females, respectively.The present study indicated that Japanese males with A2A2 genotype have a higher risk of being current smokers.No association for Japanese females suggested that female smoking behavior is differently affected in biological and/or psychological manner.J Epidemiol2002;12:297-304.
PURPOSE:To assess the reproducibility and validity of a single-item, self-administered questionnaire on walking used in two population-based prospective cohort studies in northern Japan, using pedometer counts as the reference standard. METHODS:Fifty-one men and 55 women participating in the main cohort studies(mean age:61.7 years)responded to a question on the average duration of walking per day five times at 3-month intervals.The subjects also provided 3 consecutive days of pedometer counts four times along with the first four questionnaire surveys. RESULTS:For the first and the fifth questionnaires administered one year apart, 55% of the subjects chose concordant categories among three options(=<30 min / between 30 and 60 min / >= 60 min), and 13% chose the highest category in one questionnaire and the lowest in the other questionnaire. The sexand age-adjusted mean daily numbers of walking steps counted by the pedometer were 5, 857, 7, 047, and 7, 621 for the three categories of walking duration in the fifth questionnaire, and it showed significant linear associations with all of the five questionnaire measurements. CONCLUSON:The single-item questionnaire on walking is reasonably reproducible and valid, and useful in studying the health effects of walking among the Japanese population.J Epidemiol 2002;12:305-309.
Tomotaka Sobue, 7 Shizuyo Kusumi, 1 Tamiko Iwasaki, 1, 5 Chikao Yamagishi, 1 and Hiromichi Matsudaira1 To examine confounding on the risk assessment of the radiation workers at nuclear facilities in Japan, a questionnaire survey of their characteristics such as life-style and occupational history was performed for 54, 369 male and 470 female workers who were currently engaged in the job and valid answers were obtained from 48, 281 males and 428 females.In order to know whether these characteristics were different among different dose groups, the Mantel extension statistical test was performed only for male respondents, with cumulative radiation doses stratified into 5 classes.Increasing trend according to the increasing doses was statistically significant for the percentages of tobacco smokers and of heavy smokers.It was also the case for heavy alcohol drinkers.Percentages of workers who were engaged in jobs dealing with specific toxic materials were also increasing in the higher dose groups.On the other hand, percentage of workers who underwent the X-ray examination of the upper digestive tracts or other radiological examinations tended to be lower in higher dose groups.These results indicate that characteristics of radiation workers such as life-style are different among dose groups and thus may play a role as a confounding factor in the statistical relation between the radiation doses and cancer mortalities.J Epidemiol2002;12:310-319.
To elucidate maternal characteristics and pregnancy complications associated with low APGAR score, a case-control study of low APGAR score was conducted under matching both gestational age and route of delivery, in full-term deliveries at a Japanese hospital with102 cases and 204 controls. Previous induced abortion and occurrence of preeclampsia were more frequently observed in the low APGAR score cases.In the multiple conditional logistic regression analysis, each of these factors more than doubled the risk of low APGAR score.Even if only those without perinatal troubles were included in the analysis, previous induced abortion was recognized as an independent risk factor of low APGAR score(odds ratio=2.68, 95% confidence interval:1.01 -7.04).Despite of the potential limitations of this study, previous induced abortion might be a useful predictor of adverse state of newborn infant. J Epidemiol 2002;12:320-323.
Epidemiologic and clinical studies have related acute and, less frequently, chronic life stress to cardiovascular diseases.In addition, animal models suggest that chronic psychological stress could cause atherosclerosis, probably by increasing sympathetic activation.In this cross-sectional study we evaluated the association between job strain, as one of the markers of workplace stress, and the urinary excretion of Vanilmandelic acid(VMA)upon awakening as a sympathoadrenal activity marker in the morning.Subjects were 936 male and 823 female civil servants working in departments related to the municipality of a city in Toyama Prefecture, Japan, in the spring of 2001.VMA was measured by highperformance liquid chromatography.We found that there was an age dependent increase in the level of VMA and females had higher VMA levels than males.Males who were current smokers had significantly lower VMA levels than nonsmokers after adjusting for age.Job strain level did not relate to VMA concentration in urine after adjusting for age and smoking status both in men and women.In addition, working and sleeping hours as predictor variables were also not associated with urinary VMA levels upon awakening in the morning.In conclusion, it seems that job strain does not independently relate to the sympathoadrenal activity, but the interaction between job strain and other variables such as personal characteristics and environmental factors and their relation with sympathoadrenal activity should further be explored.J Epidemiol2002;12:324-329.
To characterize temporal variations of live births in Japan, we analyzed data on the 1, 203, 147 births of 1998.In hospitals, with 20+ beds, the daily average of live births was significantly lower at weekends and national holidays(mean=1, 433, SD=100)than on weekdays(mean=1, 957, SD=126).Hourly distri- butions of live births showed a single sharp peak at 1:00-2:59 pm on weekdays with a small peak at an earlier hour on Saturdays, Sundays and national holidays.The results in clinics, with no bed or less than 20 beds, were similar to those in hospitals except on Saturdays.The difference in the daily aver- age of live births between Saturdays and weekdays was smaller in clinics than that found in hospitals, and hourly distributions on Saturdays resembled those of weekdays but not Sundays or national holi- days.Maternity homes showed no differences in the mean number of daily live births over the days of the week including national holidays, and no clear peak of percentage distributions of hourly live births on each day of the week.The present study suggests that the weekly and hourly variations observed in hospitals and clinics are not due to a biological rhythm of labor, but to obstetric intervention in the tim- ing of delivery, either through induction of labor or elective cesarean section.J Epidemiol 2002;12:330-335.
Although the number of nursing homes is increasing in Australia, few studies have investigated the der- matologic condition of their patients.To address this issue, we conducted one of the first skin disease investigations of nursing home residents in Queensland, Australia.Methods:Our predominant data source was the attending physicians' medical reports, which are updated monthly following their physi- cal examination of each patient.Specialist podiatrists' monthly progress notes were also used as were daily nursing reports.Results:Just over half the patients(54.4%)had at least one skin disease regis- tered among their medical records.Xerosis(dry skin)was the most common affliction, affecting 29.5% of the patients, followed by onychomycosis(tinea unguium)at 22.5% and dermatitis(8.9%).Skin can- cer was recorded in 4.9%, while excoriation(3.1%)and unspecified keratosis(2.2%)were slightly less common.Being bedridden was identified as a risk factor for both xerosis(OR 3.9, 95% CI 1.8-8.7)and onychomycosis(OR 18.0, 95% CI 7.5-49.0).Conclusion:Overall, our research suggests that skin dis- eases are reasonably common among Australian nursing home patients.The presence of certain der- matologic conditions differed from other reports.J Epidemiol 2002;12:336-340.
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