Linking Alzheimer’s Disease with Diabetes Conference

Linking Alzheimer’s Disease with Type II Diabetes: challenges and solutions for food industry and healthcare professionals

Evening Conference
15th March 2018 - 5.00-8.00pm
University of Reading, Whiteknights Campus, Henley Business School, RG6 6UD.

A joint event between the AgriFood Training Partnership (AFTP), Centre for Integrative Neuroscience and Neurodynamics (CINN), Institute for Food Nutrition and Health (IFNH) and Alzheimer’s Research UK (ARUK).

The link between Type II Diabetes (Diabetes mellitus) and vascular dementia is well established, with both conditions affected by patient maturity, obesity and a poor diet. Microvascular disease caused by this combination of risk factors damages blood vessels and causes poor blood circulation, leading to retinopathy (blindness), lower limb disease and dementia. More recent research has provided a causative link between Type II Diabetes and the form of dementia known as Alzheimer’s Disease, to the extent that Alzheimer’s is sometimes referred to Type III Diabetes. Amyloid deposits, caused by the body's own proteins accumulating as abnormal fibres that damage organs and tissues, are associated with Alzheimer's Disease when they localise in the brain and Type II Diabetes when they localise in the pancreas. Patients with Type II Diabetes have twice the risk of healthy individuals of developing Alzheimer’s Disease.

The establishment of causal links between Type II Diabetes, which is largely associated with an unhealthy lifestyle and diet, and Alzheimer’s Disease has consequences for policy makers, the health service and the food industry. The cost of healthcare is set to escalate on an unprecedented scale and food manufacturers are coming under increasing pressure to remove or replace sugar in their products. This evening conference will have contributions from those involved in setting nutritional policy on sugar intake (Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition - SACN), researchers who will explain the evidence behind the diseases, and representatives of the food industry who will discuss how they are responding to the demands of government and consumers for a reduced sugar diet through reformulation or using sugar alternatives.

Who should attend?

The conference is relevant for food and beverage industry professionals who are involved in manufacturing, product design or commercial sales and marketing. Nutritionists, dieticians and academics working in food science, healthcare, or biomedical or cognitive research should also attend. It takes place in the middle of the campus workshop associated with the AFTP’s “Diet Quality and Health” course and course participants will be able to attend the evening conference for free.

CPD - Association for Nutrition

This event has been accredited by the Association for Nutrition as CPD.

Association for Nutrition

Registration Fees:

50% of all registration fees for this event will be donated directly to Alzheimer’s Research UK – the charity supported by the Director of the AFTP, Carol Wagstaff, in her bid to run the 2018 London Marathon. You can follow Carol's training and progress via #movingformemory.

Early bird academic rate (on or before 2nd Mar):
£50 of which £25 goes to ARUK

Early bird industry rate (on or before 2nd Mar):
£90 of which £45 goes to ARUK

Full price academic (from 3rd Mar onwards):
£90 of which £45 goes to ARUK

Full price industry (from 3rd Mar onwards):
£150 of which £75 goes to ARUK

Student Rate:
£20 of which £10 goes to ARUK

Programme:

Linking Alzheimer’s Disease with Type II Diabetes: challenges and solutions for food industry and healthcare professionals

15th March 2018

University of Reading
Henley Business School Lecture Theatre G10
Whiteknights Campus

Time Topic/Activity and Presenter


4.30pm


Arrival at Henley Business School


4.45pm


Chair’s welcome and introduction to the AFTP
Professor Carol Wagstaff, AFTP Director and Professor of Crop Quality for Health at the University of Reading


4.50pm


Introduction to the Institute of Food, Nutrition and Health
Kate Green, Partnerships Manager, Institute for Food, Nutrition and Health (IFNH)


4.55pm


Introduction to the Centre for Integrative Neuroscience and Neurodynamics
Professor Ying Zheng, Professor in Systems Engineering and Neuroscience, Deputy Director of Centre for Integrative Neuroscience and Neurodynamics


5.00pm


The relationship between Alzheimer’s disease and Type II Diabetes
Ruta Dekeryte, School of Medicine, Medical Sciences & Nutrition University of Aberdeen


5.20pm


Role of glucose metabolism in Alzheimer's disease pathology
Dr Teresa Niccoli, UCL Institute of Healthy Ageing, Department of Genetics, Evolution and Environment, University College London


5.40pm


Dietary strategies which target both cardio-metabolic and cognitive health
Professor Anne-Marie Minihane, Nutrition and Preventive Medicine Department, Norwich Medical School, University of East Anglia


6.00pm


The role of dietary polyphenols in human cardiovascular and brain health
Professor Jeremy Spencer, Department of Food and Nutritional Sciences, University of Reading


6.20pm


Coffee break – research posters and stands representing the organisations associated with the event will be available for viewing


6.40pm


The challenges of reformulation for sugars reduction
Professor Julian M Cooper, 342 Consulting Ltd


7.00pm


Managing sugars in the beverage industry
Dr Janet Warren, Registered Dietitan, European Nutrition Manager, PepsiCo


7.20pm


Technical challenges of sugar reduction in food manufacturing
Jenny Arthur, Head of Nutrition and Product Development, Leatherhead Food Research Ltd


7.40pm


Evidence-driven policy driving nutritional recommendations for the prevention of non-communicable diseases
Professor Julie Lovegrove, Hugh Sinclair Chair in Human Nutrition and expert on Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN)


8.00pm


Chair’s closing remarks and discussion followed by wine and canapés reception – research posters and stands representing the organisations associated with the event will be available for viewing

Confirmed Guest Speakers:

Carol Wagstaff

Professor Carol Wagstaff, AFTP Director and Professor of Crop Quality for Health at the University of Reading

Topic Title: Chair’s welcome and introduction to the AFTP

Biography: Carol received her DPhil from the University of York in 1999 and is also an alumnus of Royal Holloway, University of London. She was appointed as Assistant Professor at University of Reading in January 2007 and promoted to Associate Professor in 2010. She took over the Directorship of the BBSRC Food Advanced Training Partnership in 2012 and has subsequently become the Director of the AgriFood Training Partnership. She is also on the review panel of the Swedish Research Council for Natural, engineering and environmental sciences, Chair of Eucarpia Leafy Vegetables Group and on the editorial boards of the Journal of Food and Agricultural Science and Annual Plant Reviews Online. Her research team at the University of Reading is funded by external sources in collaboration with numerous businesses in the AgriFood industry and is focused on improving the quality of food, including the nutritional value, appearance, flavour and shelf life, as well as helping consumers make healthy dietary choices.

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Kate Green

Kate Green, Partnerships Manager, Institute for Food, Nutrition and Health

Topic Title: Introduction to the Institute of Food, Nutrition and Health

Biography: Kate joined the Institute for Food, Nutrition and Health in June 2017 and in her role as Partnerships Manager she is responsible for actively identifying and developing opportunities for multi-disciplinary collaboration, both among researchers and other academics across the University of Reading, as well as with external stakeholders who share the Institute’s strategic ambitions. Prior to joining the University, Kate worked as Director of Business Development at the Collab Group (previously called the 157 Group) – a UK-wide network of Further Education Colleges - where she took a strategic lead on business partnerships and had responsibility for collaborative bids and contracts. Kate has also worked extensively within the Further Education sector as a management consultant, coordinating a regional network of training providers and delivering bespoke support to a wide variety of organisations across the country.

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Ying Zheng

Professor Ying Zheng, Professor in Systems Engineering and Neuroscience, Deputy Director of Centre for Integrative Neuroscience and Neurodynamics

Topic Title: Introduction to the Centre for Integrative Neuroscience and Neurodynamics

Biography: Professor Ying Zheng received her BEng and PhD from the University of Sheffield, UK. She has been working in the interface of systems engineering and neuroscience for over 10 years. The main direction of her research is to develop mathematical models to understand neural and haemodynamic signals obtained from neuroimaging techniques such as microelectrodes, EEG, laser-Doppler flowmetry, optical imaging spectroscopy and fMRI. The mathematical models are based on physiological measurements (neural and haemodynamic), with the model parameters reflecting aspects of the underlying physiological processes. These mathematical models also generate testable hypotheses to guide the design of further physiological experiments and the refinement of these models.

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Ruta Dekeryte

Ruta Dekeryte, School of Medicine, Medical Sciences & Nutrition University of Aberdeen.

Topic Title: The relationship between Alzheimer’s disease and Type II Diabetes

Biography: After completing secondary education in Kaunas (Lithuania), I relocated to the UK and obtained a BSc (Honours) degree in ‘Neuroscience with Psychology’ at the University of Aberdeen in 2014. I continued my academic research career by undertaking a postgraduate project investigating the links between Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and Type II Diabetes (T2D). Currently, I am in the 4th year of my PhD programme, working on a collaborative project between Professor Mirela Delibegovic (diabetes expert) and Professor Bettina Platt (dementia expert) at the University of Aberdeen, investigating the possible molecular mechanisms underlying the comorbidity of AD and T2D and exploring different dietary and pharmacological approaches to combat both disorders using in vivo models and ex vivo tissue analyses.

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Teresa Niccolli

Dr Teresa Niccoli, UCL Institute of Healthy Ageing, Department of Genetics, Evolution and Environment, University College London

Topic Title: Role of glucose metabolism in Alzheimer's disease pathology

Biography: Dr Teresa Niccoli graduated in Natural Sciences from the University of Cambridge and completed her PhD studies under Nobel Prize winner Paul Nurse’s supervision at Cancer Research UK, studying cells polarity. She was then awarded a Beit Memorial Trust Fellowship to study oocyte development with Daniel St Johnston at the Gurdon Institute in Cambridge. She then took a career break to look after her two sons, during which she competed a Masters in Medical Ethics and Law at King’s College London. She returned to scientific research by joining Linda Partridge’s laboratory at the Institute of Healthy Ageing at UCL, and then Adrian Isaacs’ laboratory at the Institute of Neurology at UCL. Teresa is using the fruit-fly, Drosophila melanogaster, to model a number of neurodegenerative disease, in order to understand their pathological mechanisms and their link to ageing. In particular she is interested in understanding the role of glucose metabolism in neurodegeneration.

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Anne-Marie Minihane

Professor Anne-Marie Minihane, Nutrition and Preventive Medicine Department, Norwich Medical School, University of East Anglia, UK.

Topic Title: Dietary strategies which target both cardio-metabolic and cognitive health

Biography: Anne-Marie Minihane heads the Nutrigenetics Group and is Director of Research and Innovation, at Norwich Medical School, UEA, UK. The group investigates the independent and interactive impact of dietary components (in particular n-3 fatty acids and plant bioactives) and APOE genotype on cardio-metabolic and cognitive health. The majority of the work uses randomised controlled trials (RCTs) with the human interventions complemented by model system and molecular biology approaches to inform the RCTs and investigate the mechanisms underlying gene diet health associations. The research involves a number of industrial partners. In addition, Anne Marie contributes to the teaching of the Medical and Bioscience students at UEA and elsewhere, in the area of nutrition and disease prevention and therapeutics. She is academic advisor to the Nutrition Optimisation Task Force and Scientific Advisory Committee member for ILSI Europe and Deputy Editor of the British Journal of Nutrition.

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Jeremy Spencer

Professor Jeremy Spencer, Department of Food and Nutritional Sciences, University of Reading, UK

Topic Title: The role of dietary polyphenols in human cardiovascular and brain health

Biography: Professor Spencer received his PhD from King’s College London in 1997 and is currently Professor of Nutritional Biochemistry and Medicine at the University of Reading.  His initial work focused on the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying neuronal death in Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease. His recent interests concern how flavonoids, and other dietary phenolics, influence brain health through their interactions with specific cellular signaling pathways pivotal in protection against neurotoxins, in preventing neuroinflammation and in controlling memory, learning and neuro-cognitive performance.  His work also pursues the actions of flavonoids on the vascular system, in particular their potential to reduce blood pressure, enhance vascular function and improve blood perfusion to the brain.  Professor Spencer has published over 170 manuscripts and is Editor-in-Chief of Nutrition and Healthy Aging.

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Julian M Cooper

Professor Julian M Cooper - CChem, FRSC, CSci, FIFST
342 Consulting Ltd

Topic Title: The challenges of reformulation for sugars reduction

Biography: Professor Julian Cooper is an internationally renowned sugars and carbohydrate expert. During his 35 year career with British Sugar and AB Sugar he developed extensive experience in process and product development, carbohydrate chemistry and product reformulation. He retired in 2015 and set up 342 Consulting Ltd. He has worked with many major food companies, research associations and universities in Europe, North America and Japan and has presented papers at major conferences.  As Head of Food Science for both British Sugar & AB Sugar he had responsibility for new product/technology development, external scientific research, health & nutrition and food law. Dr Julian Cooper is a Visiting Professor at the University of Reading. At the IFST he is Chair of the Scientific Committee and a Board Trustee. He is an Executive Board member of the AgriFood Training Partnership.

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Janet Warren

Dr Janet Warren, Registered Dietitan, European Nutrition Manager, PepsiCo

Topic Title: Managing sugars in the beverage industry

Biography: Janet recently commenced her role in PepsiCo as European Nutrition Manager with responsibility for the ‘Nutrition’ category within PepsiCo’s portfolio. Her background is as a clinical dietitian where she specialised in paediatrics before becoming Chief Dietitian at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford. She completed a full-time PhD in 2002 at Oxford Brookes University, on the prevention of childhood obesity, and undertook related research roles at the Universities of Newcastle, NSW and Queensland in Australia alongside lecturing responsibilities. She worked for the Medical Research Council in Cambridge developing a web-based toolkit for the measurement of diet and physical activity. In 2008, she moved to industry working with Danone Early Life Nutrition, firstly as Head of Medical Affairs in the UK business for 4 years, and then in Global Research & Development in The Netherlands. On returning to the UK, she set up her own business working as a Nutrition Consultant prior to joining PepsiCo.

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Jennifer Arthur

Jenny Arthur, Head of Nutrition and Product Development, Leatherhead Food Research Ltd

Topic Title: Technical challenges of sugar reduction in food manufacturing

Biography: Jenny is a Marketer and Nutritionist, she has a degree in Marketing and worked for a range of private sector companies before managing the Department of Health’s Nutrition programme. After completing an MSc in Public Health Nutrition Jenny worked for Marks and Spencer as their Health and Wellbeing Marketer before becoming the Company Nutritionist. Prior to joining Leatherhead Jenny ran her own Marketing and Nutrition Consultancy developing health and nutrition strategies; with clients including a range of retailers and food manufacturers. 

Jenny has been at Leatherhead for nearly 4 years, initially as the Strategic Insight Manager, her team were responsible for looking into market and product trends data as well as qualitative research techniques. In addition, Jenny managed Applied Research, a team of Sensory scientists developing new Sensory methodologies. In June 2015 Jenny was appointed Head of Nutrition to drive the nutrition and health agenda within Leatherhead. Jenny has repositioned the Leatherhead Nutrition offering to focus more on Nutrition Intelligence desk based research and Glycemic Index/Response studies. From May 2016 Jenny added the Product Development team to her portfolio with the aim of integrating the Nutrition and Product Development teams, to provide a more cohesive approach and integrated solutions for clients.

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Julie Lovegrove

Prof Julie Lovegrove RNutr FAfN

Topic Title: Evidence-driven policy driving nutritional recommendations for the prevention of non-communicable diseases

Biography: Prof Lovegrove holds the Hugh Sinclair Chair of Human Nutrition and is Deputy Director of the Institute for Cardiovascular and Metabolic Research (ICMR), University of Reading. After graduating from University of Surrey with a degree in Human Nutrition and Dietetics, she undertook a PhD in Nutritional Biochemistry. Prof Lovegrove then moved to the University of Reading where she now leads the Hugh Sinclair Unit of Human Nutrition, its mission to advance and teach evidence-based nutritional science to improve health and prevent disease. Her research interests include how diet, particularly dietary fats, flavonoids and nitrates, influence cardiometabolic risk, and specifically vascular dysfunction, lipid metabolism, insulin resistance, and nutrient-gene interactions.

Prof Lovegrove has played a key role in nutrition course accreditation from its inception and is the current Chair of the AfN Accreditation Committee. She is a member of the Scientific Advisory Committee for Nutrition (SACN), Carbohydrate Working Group and the Project Board for the National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS). She has also been active as a member of the Nutrition Society for over 20 years, including serving on Council in 2004-7. Prof Lovegrove has been a RNutr since 2003.

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Poster presenters:

Microbiome–host interactions: protective effects of propionate upon the blood–brain barrier

Lesley Hoyles1, Tom Snelling1, Umm-Kulthum Umlai1, Jeremy K. Nicholson1, Simon R. Carding2,3, Robert C. Glen1,4 and Simon McArthur5.

1Division of Integrative Systems Medicine and Digestive Disease, Department of Surgery and Cancer, Imperial College London, UK.
2Norwich Medical School, University of East Anglia, UK.
3The Gut Health and Food Safety Research Programme, The Quadram Institute, Norwich Research Park Norwich, UK.
4Centre for Molecular Informatics, Department of Chemistry, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK.
5Barts & the London School of Medicine & Dentistry, Queen Mary University of London, UK.

Breakdown of foodstuffs by the gut microbiota results in the production of the short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) acetate, propionate and butyrate. SFCAs are potent bioactive molecules, providing energy for intestinal cells, enhancing satiety and positively influencing metabolic health. They also influence the gut–brain axis. The gut microbiota and/or its bioactive molecules contribute to maintaining the integrity of the blood–brain barrier (BBB), the primary defensive structure of the brain. Propionate is produced by the gut microbiota from the breakdown of glucans found in whole grains, mushrooms and yeast products. It is found in the blood at ≤1 µM. At this physiologically relevant concentration, propionate enhances BBB integrity, mitigating against deleterious inflammatory and oxidative stimuli known to contribute to neurological and psychological diseases. Therefore, there is the potential that dietary supplementation with glucan-containing products may offer protection of the brain against detrimental stimuli.

The effects of chronic cocoa flavanol supplementation on cognition and neural mechanisms in healthy older adults

Amy Rees1, Georgina Dodd1, Gessica Serra1, Daniel Lamport2, Judi Ellis2, Claire Williams2, Laurie Butler2, Jeremy Spencer1

1 Hugh Sinclair Unit of Human Nutrition, University of Reading, Whiteknights, Reading, UK, RG6 6AP, UK.
2 Department of Psychology, University of Reading, Earley Gate, Whiteknights, Reading, UK,  RG6 6AL, UK.

Background: 

Recent human intervention trials have demonstrated cognitive benefits following consumption of flavanol-rich cocoa, perhaps due to improved cerebral blood flow (CBF). However, there is limited evidence on longer term effects and the mechanisms behind them. 

Objective:

To evaluate the effect of chronic cocoa flavanol consumption on cognitive performance and to understand the potential mechanisms underpinning any beneficial effects.

Design: 

A double-blind, randomised, controlled, parallel-arm study is being conducted in 80 healthy older adults, aged 60-75. Participants are randomly assigned to receive either a high cocoa flavanol (900mg) intervention or matched low flavanol (10mg) control. Cognitive performance is assessed using a specially designed test battery. Magnetic resonance imaging is used to obtain measures of CBF, blood-oxygen level dependent (BOLD) response during two cognitive tasks, and structural brain changes. Flow mediated dilation (FMD) is measured to look at peripheral vascular health. Bioavailability of flavanols in blood and urine will be determined and biomarkers associated with vascular and brain function will also be quantified. All measures are taken at baseline, after 24 weeks of daily supplementation and again following a 12 week washout period.

Proposed analysis:

A change in global cognitive performance over the duration of the study is the primary outcome. Secondary outcomes include domain specific changes in cognition as well as all other outcome measures (CBF, BOLD, FMD, flavanol bioavailability, biomarkers of vascular and brain function). All data will be statistically analysed using general linear modelling. The findings may provide evidence linking vascular changes in the periphery with changes in the vasculature of the brain, helping form a greater understanding of the neural mechanisms behind cognitive improvement following chronic flavanol supplementation. It will also have implications for exploiting the potential beneficial health effects of flavanols in the diet, particularly with relation to counteracting cognitive decline associated with aging.  

Saccharolytic fermentation of 3 novel prebiotic blends by in vitro colonic model, increases production of metabolites acetate and propionate implicated in appetite regulation.

S.Collins1, D.Commane1, G.Gibson1, O.Kennedy1

1Department of Food and Nutritional Sciences, University of Reading, Whiteknights, Reading, RG6 6AP.

Obesity rates in the UK doubled in two decades by 20131 and has, in part been associated with a reduction in consumption of non-digestible carbohydrates (NDCs)2. Colonic fermentation of NDCs by commensal gut bacteria such as Bifidobacteria and Propionobacterium produce short chain fatty acids (SCFA) acetate and propionate3, thought to stimulate anorexigenic pathways via the gut/brain axis by triggering satiety hormones to reduce food intake4.; The aim here was to investigate the impact of in vitro fermentation of 3 potential prebiotic fibre blends: inulin + gluco-oligosaccharides (I+GLOS), inulin + arabinoxylan (I+ABX) and inulin + resistant starch (I+RS) on gut microbiota composition and metabolic end products. It was hypothesised that combining dietary carbohydrates may stimulate the growth of SCFA producing bacterial groups to produce a higher concentration of acetate and propionate than oligosaccharides alone, using a continuous culture colonic model simulating anatomically distinct regions of the large intestine. Blends were administered at 1.33g twice daily for 18 days and samples collected over 3 days for analyses of bacterial groups using 16S rRNA based fluorescence in situ hybridisation and SCFAs via HPLC. Acetate significantly increased following fermentation of all 3 blends in V2, simulating the transverse region of the colon. I+ABX induced a significant increase in propionate production during I+ABX fermentation as well as a significant 0.9 log10 CFU/mL increase P<0.05 in numbers of bifidobacterial species in V1, simulating the proximal region of the colon. Combining fibres may increase SCFA production in areas of the colon they are less prevalent i.e. towards the distal region and has potential for use in anti-obesegenic strategies in the future. 

  1. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/adult-obesity-applying-all-our-health

  2. Slavin J, (2013) Nutrients 5: 1417-1435.

  3. Tolhurst G, Heffron H, Lam YS, et al. (2012). Diabetes 61: 364-374.

  4. Ramirez-Farias C, Fuller Z, Duncan A, et al. (2009) British Journal of Nutrition 101: 541-550.

Glycaemic index, glycaemic response and mood (PhD project with results)

Matthew Grout1, Dr Daniel Lamport1, Professor Julie Lovegrove2

1 Psychology Department, University of Reading, Whiteknights, Reading, UK, RG6 6AP.
2 Hugh Sinclair, University of Reading, Whiteknights, Reading, UK, RG6 6AP.

Background:

There has been no study that has investigated how the acute manipulation of the glycaemic index (GI) of a day’s diet can affect a person’s glycaemic profile and mood across a day.

Objective:

The aim of the current study was to investigate the glycaemic profile produced by two diets with different GI values, and to examine whether these diets led to differences in mood in a healthy young adult sample.

Design:

24 participants aged 18-65 years old took part in a randomised, crossover, counterbalanced design. Glucose concentrations levels were primarily measured a total of 21 times using a continuous interstitial glucose monitor. Mood was measured a total of 6 times throughout the day, using the Bond-Lader mood scale.

Results:

The low-GI (LGI) and high-GI (HGI) produced measurably different glycaemic profiles, with the largest differences occurring after the consumption of lunch. There were no significant differences between conditions with regards to mood.

Conclusion:

To conclude, the application of GI to a three meal design can produce significant and observable differences in the glycaemic profile of healthy adults across the day. However, no differences in mood were observed.

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