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A new fossil site in a previously unexplored part of western Madagascar (the Beanka Protected Area) has yielded remains of many recently extinct vertebrates, including giant lemurs (Babakotia radofilai, Palaeopropithecus kelyus, Pachylemur sp., and Archaeolemur edwardsi), carnivores (Cryptoprocta spelea), the aardvark-like Plesiorycteropus sp., and giant ground cuckoos (Coua). Many of these represent considerable range extensions. Extant species that were extirpated from the region (e.g., Prolemur simus) are also present. Calibrated radiocarbon ages for 10 bones from extinct primates span the last three millennia. The largely undisturbed taphonomy of bone deposits supports the interpretation that many specimens fell in from a rock ledge above the entrance. Some primates and other mammals may have been prey items of avian predators, but human predation is also evident. Strontium isotope ratios (87Sr/86Sr) suggest that fossils were local to the area. Pottery sherds and bones of extinct and extant vertebrates with cut and chop marks indicate human activity in previous centuries. Scarcity of charcoal and human artifacts suggests only occasional visitation to the site by humans. The fossil assemblage from this site is unusual in that, while it contains many sloth lemurs, it lacks ratites, hippopotami, and crocodiles typical of nearly all other Holocene subfossil sites on Madagascar.
The Murcia Twin Registry (MTR) is the only population-based registry in Spain. Created in 2006, the registry has been growing more than a decade to become one of the references for twin research in the Mediterranean region. The MTR database currently comprises 3545 adult participants born between 1940 and 1977. It also holds a recently launched satellite registry of university students (N = 204). Along five waves of data collection, the registry has gathered questionnaire and anthropometric data, as well as biological samples. The MTR keeps its main research focus on health and health-related behaviors from a public health perspective. This includes lifestyle, health promotion, quality of life or environmental conditions. Future short-term development points to the expansion of the biobank and the continuation of the collection of longitudinal data.
The indications for expanded endoscopic transnasal approaches continue to increase, with more complex skull base defects needing to be repaired. This study reviews the management of large anterior skull base defects with opening of the sellar diaphragm.
A prospective analysis of endonasal endoscopic surgery carried out at Son Espases University Hospital between January 2013 and December 2018 was performed. The analysis included only the cases with a significative intra-operative cerebrospinal fluid leak. In all cases, reconstruction was performed by combining the gasket seal technique with a pedicled mucosal endonasal flap.
Twenty-eight patients were included. The mucoperiosteal nasoseptal flap, the lateral wall flap and the middle turbinate flap were used in 13, 8 and 7 patients, respectively, combined with the gasket seal technique. One case of post-operative cerebrospinal fluid leak was observed (3.57 per cent).
The combination of a gasket seal with an endonasal mucosal flap is an excellent technique for repairing large anterior skull base defects.
This study assessed the in vitro anthelmintic (AH) activity of methanol and acetone:water leaf extracts from Annona squamosa, A. muricata and A. reticulata against Haemonchus contortus eggs. The egg hatch test was used to determine the effective concentrations required to inhibit 50% of eggs hatching (EC50). The role of polyphenols on AH activity was measured through bioassays with and without polyvinylpolypyrrolidone (PVPP). Methanolic extracts mainly caused the death of eggs at the morula stage (ovicidal activity). Meanwhile, acetone:water extracts caused egg-hatching failure of developed larvae (larvae failing eclosion (LFE) activity). The lowest EC50 values against H. contortus eggs were observed for the methanolic extracts from A. reticulata and A. muricata (274.2 and 382.9 µg/ml, respectively). From the six extracts evaluated, the methanolic extracts of A. muricata, A. reticulata and A. squamosa showed the highest ovicidal activity, resulting in 98.9%, 92.8% and 95.1% egg mortality, respectively. When the methanolic extract of A. squamosa was incubated with PVPP, its AH activity increased. Similarly, when acetone:water extracts of A. muriata and A. reticulata were incubated with PVPP, their LFE activity increased. Alkaloids were only evident in methanolic extracts, irrespective of PVPP incubation. The presence of acetogenins was not observed. In conclusion, methanolic extracts obtained from leaves of A. muricata, A. reticulata and A. squamosa showed ovicidal activity affecting the morula of H. contortus eggs, with minor LFE activity. Meanwhile, acetone:water extracts showed mostly LFE activity, with a lower proportion of ovicidal activity.
A high degree of vigilance and appropriate diagnostic methods are required to detect Clostridioides difficile infection (CDI). We studied the effectiveness of a multimodal training program for improving CDI surveillance and prevention. Between 2011 and 2016, this program was made available to healthcare staff of acute care hospitals in Catalonia. The program included an online course, two face-to-face workshops and dissemination of recommendations on prevention and diagnosis. Adherence to the recommendations was evaluated through surveys administered to the infection control teams at the 38 participating hospitals. The incidence of CDI increased from 2.20 cases/10 000 patient-days in 2011 to 3.41 in 2016 (P < 0.001). The number of hospitals that applied an optimal diagnostic algorithm rose from 32.0% to 71.1% (P = 0.002). Hospitals that applied an optimal diagnostic algorithm reported a higher overall incidence of CDI (3.62 vs. 1.92, P < 0.001), and hospitals that were more active in searching for cases reported higher rates of hospital-acquired CDI (1.76 vs. 0.84, P < 0.001). The results suggest that the application of a multimodal training strategy was associated with a significant rise in the reporting of CDI, as well as with an increase in the application of the optimal diagnostic algorithm.
On 16 March 2018, a nursing home notified a possible acute gastroenteritis outbreak that affected 11 people. Descriptive and case–control studies and analysis of clinical and environmental samples were carried out to determine the characteristics of the outbreak, its aetiology, the transmission mechanism and the causal food. The extent of the outbreak in and outside the nursing home was determined and the staff factors influencing propagation were studied by multivariate analysis. A turkey dinner on March 14 was associated with the outbreak (OR 4.22, 95% CI 1.11–16.01). Norovirus genogroups I and II were identified in stool samples. The attack rates in residents, staff and household contacts of staff were 23.49%, 46.22% and 22.87%, respectively. Care assistants and cleaning staff were the staff most frequently affected. Cohabitation with an affected care assistant was the most important factor in the occurrence of cases in the home (adjusted OR 6.37, 95% CI 1.13–36.02). Our results show that staff in close contact with residents and their household contacts had a higher risk of infection during the norovirus outbreak.
Here, different tissue surfaces of tomato root were characterized employing atomic force microscopy on day 7 and day 21 of growth through Young's modulus and plasticity index. These parameters provide quantitative information regarding the mechanical behavior of the tomato root under fresh conditions in different locations of the cross-section of root [cell surface of the epidermis, parenchyma (Pa), and vascular bundles (Vb)]. The results show that the mechanical parameters depend on the indented region, tissue type, and growth time. Thereby, the stiffness increases in the cell surface of epidermal tissue with increasing growth time (from 9.19 ± 0.68 to 13.90 ± 1.68 MPa) and the cell surface of Pa tissue displays the opposite behavior (from 1.74 ± 0.49 to 0.48 ± 0.55); the stiffness of cell surfaces of Vb tissue changes from 10.60 ± 0.58 to 6.37 ± 0.53 MPa, all cases showed a statistical difference (p < 0.05). Viscoelastic behavior dominates the mechanical forces in the tomato root. The current study is a contribution to a better understanding of the cell mechanics behavior of different tomato root tissues during growth.
Perceived discrimination (PD) is reliably and strongly associated with partisan identity (PID) among US immigrant minorities such as Latinos and Asian Americans. Yet whether PD causes PID remains unclear, since it is possible that partisanship influences perceptions of discrimination or that other factors drive the observed association. Here, we assess the causal influence of group-level PD on PID using five experiments with Latino and Asian American adults. These experiments varied in important ways: they took place inside and outside the lab, occurred prior to and during Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, and tested different manifestations of PD and partisan attitudes (total n = 2,528). These efforts point to a simple but unexpected conclusion: our experiments and operationalizations do not support the claim that group-targeted PD directly causes PID. These results have important implications for understanding partisanship among immigrants and their co-ethnics and the political incorporation of Latinos and Asian Americans.
The Centro de Laseres Pulsados in Salamanca, Spain has recently started operation phase and the first user access period on the 6 J 30 fs 200 TW system (VEGA 2) already started at the beginning of 2018. In this paper we report on two commissioning experiments recently performed on the VEGA 2 system in preparation for the user campaign. VEGA 2 system has been tested in different configurations depending on the focusing optics and targets used. One configuration (long focal length
cm) is for underdense laser–matter interaction where VEGA 2 is focused onto a low density gas-jet generating electron beams (via laser wake field acceleration mechanism) with maximum energy up to 500 MeV and an X-ray betatron source with a 10 keV critical energy. A second configuration (short focal length
cm) is for overdense laser–matter interaction where VEGA 2 is focused onto a
thick Al target generating a proton beam with a maximum energy of 10 MeV and temperature of 2.5 MeV. In this paper we present preliminary experimental results.
Aircraft accidents are extremely rare in the aviation sector. However, their consequences can be very dramatic. One of the most important problems is runway excursions, when an aircraft exceeds the end (overrun) or the side (veer-off) of the runway. After performing exploratory analysis and hypothesis tests, a Bayesian-network-based approach was considered to provide information from risk scenarios involving landing procedures. The method was applied to a real database containing key variables related to landing operations on three runways. The objective was to analyse the effects over runway overrun excursions of failing to fulfil expert recommendations upon landing. For this purpose, the most influential variables were analysed statistically, and several scenarios were built, leading to a runway ranking based on the risk assessed.
HLA-G expression has been detected in early preimplantation embryos and it has been postulated that a relationship between embryonic expression of this factor and successful pregnancy may exist. Forty-six patients were prospectively selected from our centre ‘Unidad de Reproducción Humana, Hospital Universitario de Canarias’ for conducting this study. In all cases, metaphase II (MII) oocytes were fertilized using intracytoplasmic sperm injection 2–4 h after retrieval. Embryos were cultured individually in 20 µl droplets of G-1 medium (VitroLife) under oil at 37°C and a 6% CO2 environment. Fertilization was assessed at 18 h postinsemination and all oocytes fertilized were passed into a new culture plaque individually in 300 µl culture medium until day 3 of culture. The culture medium was examined for the expression and secretion of sHLA-G with a sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay kit (BioVendor, Heidelberg, Germany) according to the manufacturer’s instructions. We found statistical significance between higher levels of sHLA-G secretion and pregnancy rate. When both groups were compared there was no difference in embryo quality of transferred embryos, but a significant difference in the number of oocytes and the embryo quality of the cohort existed that was greater in the pregnant group. A standardized sHLA-G assay with a specifically defined range and standard units provides a non-invasive method to identify the most competent embryos for transfer.
This work presents the synthesis of selenium-based nanoparticles via microwave-assisted heating and their subsequent characterization using UV-vis Spectroscopy (UV-Vis), high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM), and energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX), techniques. Ongoing research includes the study of the nanoparticles capacity to generate reactive oxygen species (ROS).
We investigated the distribution of comorbidities among adult tuberculosis (TB) patients in Chiapas, the poorest Mexican state, with a high presence of indigenous population, and a corridor for migrants from Latin America. Secondary analysis on 5508 new adult TB patients diagnosed between 2010 and 2014 revealed that the most prevalent comorbidities were diabetes mellitus (DM; 19.1%) and undernutrition (14.4%). The prevalence of DM in these TB patients was significantly higher among middle aged (41–64 years) compared with older adults (⩾65 years) (38.6% vs. 23.2%; P < 0.0001). The prevalence of undernutrition was lower among those with DM, and higher in communities with high indigenous presence. Immigrants only comprised 2% of all TB cases, but were more likely to have unfavourable TB treatment outcomes (treatment failure, death and default) when compared with those born in Chiapas (29.5% vs. 11.1%; P < 0.05). Unfavourable TB outcomes were also more prevalent among the TB patients with undernutrition, HIV or older age, but not DM (P < 0.05). Our study in Chiapas illustrates the challenges of other regions worldwide where social (e.g. indigenous origin, poverty, migration) and host factors (DM, undernutrition, HIV, older age) are associated with TB. Further understanding of these critical factors will guide local policy makers and health providers to improve TB management.