The purpose of this paper is to analyze the current state of developmental researches in the area of psychophysiology of emotions in preschool and elementary school children. Electrodermal and cardiovascular activity measures are considered as the sources of indices of the autonomic nervous system activation during emotion-eliciting stimulation in children. We discuss the question of sensitivity of phasic and tonic autonomic measures for the identification of occurrence of emotion, mapping it along with valence and arousal dimensions in affective space, and to further differentiate emotions by their physiological manifestations. Considered are the conceptual and methodological issues related to psychophysiological measurements and developmental factors affecting the emotional reactivity in children. Special attention is devoted to the developmental aspects of psychophysiological studies on emotion such as the maturation of organs, integration of the autonomic and central nervous systems, age and gender-related changes in autonomic reactivity, and development of inhibitory control. Summarized are main findings relevant to psychophysiology of emotions in preschool and early school-age children and suggested are most perspective directions of their integration in the framework of modern theories of emotion.
The discovery and explanation of differences among organisms is a major concern for evolutionary and systematic biologists. In physical anthropology, the discrimination of taxa and the qualitative and quantitative description of ontogenetic or evolutionary change require, of course, the analysis of morphological features. Since the 1960s, a remarkable amount of fossil material was excavated, some of it still awaiting a detailed first analysis, some of it requiring re-examination by more developed methods. While the fossil record grew continuously, a revolution in anthropological research took place with advances in computer technology in the 1980s: a handful of innovative researchers working in specialized anthropology laboratories or medical departments developed the methodological inventory needed to extract critical information from subjects in vivo and from fossilized remains. A considerable part of this information is preserved in the physically heretofore inaccessible interior of anatomical structures. Virtual Anthropology (VA) is a means of making them visible and measurable. Thus, VA also allows access to `hidden' landmarks; in addition, the large number of semilandmarks accessible on the form enhances the power of Geometric Morphometrics analysis. Furthermore, the density information in volume data allows manipulations such as segmentation, impossible with the real, physical object. Moreover, metric body measurements generally, and cranial measurements specifically, are also an important source of information for the analysis of the ontogenetic development of the skeletal system, and-last but not least-for clinical use (e.g., operation planning, operation simulation, prothetics). Thus, there developed a fruitful interdisciplinary cooperation between statistics, medicine, and physical anthropology.
Selenium is an essential trace element which is part of the active site of seleno-dependent glutathione peroxidase and type 1 deiodinase. Therefore, it plays a key role in thyroid hormone metabolism. The present work was undertaken in order to evaluate selenium status in two Ivory Coast populations: the first with high (Glanlé) and the second with low (Abidjan) prevalence of iodine deficiency. Selenium, glutathione peroxidase, glutathione reductase, glutathione and diglutathione were determined in blood and/or urine. In plasma and erythrocytes, selenium and glutathione peroxidase were dramatically low in Glanlé. Compared to Abidjan, selenium, glutathione peroxidase, vitamin E and riboflavin status were decreased whereas diglutathione was increased in Glanlé. The results clearly demonstrate a selenium deficiency and suggest an oxidant stress in Glanlé. Causes and consequences of this selenium deficiency and oxidant stress remain to be determined.
Blood pressure variation was investigated among populations inhabiting islands and peninsula of Middle Dalmatia, Croatia. The number of previous anthropological studies pointed to isolation and different genetic population structure in this environmentally fairly homogeneous area. Variation in blood pressure (systolic and diastolic) among the populations of the islands of Brac, Hvar, Korcula, and the Peljesac peninsula was assessed at three levels involving village populations, regional (western and eastern) populations and the entire island populations. The blood pressure data were collected from 3834 adult individuals inhabiting 37 rural communities and were adjusted for age and body mass index. Variation in blood pressure levels existed among regions and villages. Due to the history of differential settlement, small village sizes and high levels of reproductive isolation, the observed blood pressure variation could be attributed to founder effect, genetic drift and inbreeding. The involvement of genetic factors was tested by relating blood pressure variation among villages to degree of isolation among them. Blood pressure means and proportions of hypertensives increased with endogamy levels in males. In females, this effect could not be observed. However, in both sexes the highest proportions of hypertensives (more than 40%) were found in villages that are most reproductively closed (endogamy greater than 80%). These populations are considered particularly promising for further genetic epidemiological research.
In order to focus the situation of Kazakhstan today in relation to the processes of modernization and transition to a market economy and to evidence their effects on the biology and health status of the population of Kazakhstan, we have reviewed recently available data for this region (1993-1999). Kazakhstan is still characterized by a pyramid shaped age distribution of its population and by a high incidence of not communicable diseases and lack of nutrient and micronutrients, especially among children. However, the population of Kazakhstan seems to be not immune to the diseases of the modernization. I.e., among women obesity is more frequent than underweight, especially in the urban areas. In rural populations the frequency of clinically relevant hypertension resulted low in the more isolated and traditionally living communities but it increased to 20% in the less isolated one. Although it is expected a strong increase of urbanized population in the next 25 years, currently, modernization is probably influencing life style and nutritional habits of almost only a minority of the inhabitants of Kazakhstan.
We investigated cognitive-motor abilities in 303 (156 female) school children from Zagreb, Croatia, in the age span 10 to 14 years using a newly developed chronometrical reactionmeter system (CRD). The following tests were applied: CRD-311 (simple visual discrimination of signal location), CRD-324 (short-term memory actualisation), CRD-21 (simple convergent visual orientation), and CRD-11 (arithmetically conceptualised/operationalised convergent thinking). In both gender a statistically significant age related improvement of the performance for time related parameters (minimum time of test item solving (MT), total ballast (TB), and total time of test solving (TT) was observed. In contrast, the number of errors (NE), which was the only non-time related parameter tested, did not significantly change with age. Significant differences between boys and girls were observed for the time related parameters TB and MT. TB was significantly lower in girls, whereas boys tended to be faster in MT measurements. In TT as a composed measure of the mentioned parameters, no major differences were observed. We conclude that the CRD system is a new useful tool for investigating the complexity of cognitive-motor abilities in children. Our cross-sectional study demonstrated that the time-related parameters were significantly affected by age and gender during puberty.
The purpose of the present study was to examine the physiological responses to water-walking using the Flowmill, which has a treadmill at the base of a water-flume, in two groups of women. In the first group, the women were known to regularly swim and exercise in water (group A), while in the second, they did not routinely participate in water-exercise (group B). In both groups, twelve healthy female volunteers in their fifties participated in the study. All of the subjects walked in water using the Flowmill for the first time. Subjects completed four consecutive bouts of 4-minute duration at progressively increasing speeds (20, 30, 40, and 50 m · min-1), with 1-minute rests between each bout. In addition, water-velocity was adjusted to the walking speed of each bout. The water-depth of the Flowmill was the level of the xiphoid process. The water and room temperatures were 30.3 ± 0.1°C and 24.9 ± 0.4 °C, respectively. In both groups, the relationship between walking speed and oxygen uptake (VO2) as well as that between walking speed and heart rate (HR) changed exponentially as the walking speed increased, and the relationship between HR and VO2 was linear. The relationship between HR and VO2 was similar in both groups, and there was no significant difference between the predicted maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max) of the two groups. VO2 and HR of group B during water-walking, however, were significantly higher than those of group A at all walking speeds. The results of this study clearly showed that experience in moving through the water strongly affects physiological responses to water-exercise, even when fitness levels are equivalent.
The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of ovariectomy on intramuscular energy metabolism in young rats. Twenty-four Sprague-Dawley rats (7 weeks old) were used. Twelve of them underwent ovariectomy (OVX), and the others were sham-operated on. Seven OVX rats were examined 1-week after surgery (OVX-1 group), and the other five, 4 weeks after surgery (OVX-4 group). The gastrocnemius-plantaris-soleus (GPS) muscles group was subjected to the following measurements, and the data were compared with those of the sham group (Sham-1: n=7, or Sham-4 group: n=5). From the 31P-MR spectra of the GPS muscles group at rest and during electric stimulation, the muscular oxidative capacity was measured. Maximum tension and wet weight of the whole GPS muscles group were also measured. Body weight in the OVX-4 group was significantly (p<0.01) larger than that in the Sham-4 group. The weights of the whole GPS muscles group in the Sham-1, Sham-4, OVX-1 and OVX-4 groups were 1.17, 1.51, 1.25 and 1.71 (g), respectively. The muscle weight in the OVX group tended to be greater than that in the Sham group (p<0.10). The maximum tension and oxidative capacity did not differ significantly among the groups. These data indicated that in young rats, ovariectomy induced an increase in body and muscle weight, but did not affect the maximum tension nor oxidative capacity.
The purpose of this study was to evaluate muscle fatigue using electromyogram (EMG) and acoustic myogram (AMG) signals of the shoulder and arm muscles during sustained holding tasks, with the elbow at different angles and at different levels of maximum voluntary contraction (MVC). The EMG and AMG of four muscles, including the upper trapezius (TP), anterior deltoid (DL), biceps brachii (BB), and brachioradialis (BR), were recorded during experiments using 10 healthy young males. The experiments were conducted under 9 pairs of conditions: 3 elbow angles (120°, 90°, and 60°) and * 3 levels of %MVC (20%, 40%, and 60%). Subjects were instructed to hold a weight equal to the designated %MVC at designated joint angles and asked to maintain that condition for as long as possible until exhaustion. Joint angles were also recorded by the electrogoniometers. The analysis of variance revealed that there was no significant effect of elbow angle on the mean MVC or on the endurance time. Elbow angle showed a significant effect on mean power frequency (MPF) of EMG in DL, BB, and BR, and a significant effect on root mean square (RMS) of EMG in four muscles. In BB and BR, MPF of EMG at 120° was found to be significantly lower than 90° and 60°, respectively. There was a significant main effect of elbow angle on MPF of AMG for TP at 20% MVC; for DL at 20% and 40% MVC; for BB at 40% and 60% MVC; and for BR at the three levels of %MVC. The results showed that the range MPF of AMG for DL, BB, and BR was between 32 to 46 Hz, whereas that for TP was from 49 to 83 Hz. There was a significant effect of elbow angle on RMS of AMG in all four muscles in all experiments. At 20% MVC, a progressive increase in RMS of AMG was observed with time. In contrast, at 40% and 60% MVC, RMS showed very different behavior; specifically, it was found that RMS of AMG at 20% MVC significantly increased with increase of elbow angle. We conclude that RMS of AMG has a good and clear correlation with elbow angle at a low level of contraction.
The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between sprint performance and architectural characteristics of leg muscles in 26 female 100-m sprinters. Pennation angle and muscle thickness of the vastus lateralis (VL) and gastrocnemius medialis (GM) and lateralis (GL) muscles were measured by B-mode ultrasonography, and fascicle length was estimated. Sprinters had a significantly lower VL pennation angle, but GM and GL pennation angle was similar between sprinters and female control subjects (N=22). There was no significant correlation between pennation angle and 100-m personal best performance. Sprinters had significantly greater absolute fascicle length in VL and GL than controls, which significantly correlated to 100-m best-record (r=-0.51 and r=-0.44, respectively). Relative fascicle length (VL and GL) were also significantly greater in sprinters than controls. However, there were no significant correlation between relative fascicle length and 100-m best-record (r=-0.36 and r=-0.29, respectively). No relationship was found between the sprint performance and fat-free mass (r=-0.26) or body mass index (r=-0.03). However, there was a significant correlation between percent (%) body fat and 100-m best-record (r=0.62, p<0.01). Adjusting the confounding effect of % fat, significant correlations were seen between relative fascicle length and 100-m best-record (VL; r=-0.39 and GL; r=-0.40). Absolute and relative fascicle length were similar in elite female sprinters compared with previous reported values for elite male sprinters (Kumagai et al., 2000). It was concluded that longer fascicle length is associated with greater sprinting performance in sprinters, but there is no gender differences in fascicle length for elite sprinters.