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In the framework of coupled cell systems, a coupled cell network describes graphically the dynamical dependencies between individual dynamical systems, the cells. The fundamental network of a network reveals the hidden symmetries of that network. Subspaces defined by equalities of coordinates which are flow-invariant for any coupled cell system consistent with a network structure are called the network synchrony subspaces. Moreover, for every synchrony subspace, each network admissible system restricted to that subspace is a dynamical system consistent with a smaller network called a quotient network. We characterize networks such that: the network is a subnetwork of its fundamental network, and the network is a fundamental network. Moreover, we prove that the fundamental network construction preserves the quotient relation and it transforms the subnetwork relation into the quotient relation. The size of cycles in a network and the distance of a cell to a cycle are two important properties concerning the description of the network architecture. In this paper, we relate these two architectural properties in a network and its fundamental network.
Although a national programme for control of visceral leishmaniosis (VL) is being run in Brazil, the disease continues to spread. This programme is essentially based on culling infected dogs from endemic regions. Thus, there is an urgent need to develop other control measures against VL to deter its advance. Here, a subunit vaccine, a recombinant vaccine, an insecticide-impregnated collar and the associations between these measures were evaluated for reducing the incidence of Leishmania infection in dogs. This was through a cohort study conducted in an endemic region of Brazil, considering the incidence and time of total exposure over a period of 1 year. The incidence of VL was estimated by means of serological and molecular diagnostic tests, 180 and 360 days after the application of the control measures. The estimates of the effectiveness (EF) were not significant in any cohort. The EF of the subunit vaccine, the recombinant vaccine and the collar were 26.4%, 32.8% and 57.7% and the upper limit of the 95% confidence interval for EF were 63.7%, 67.9% and 82.5%, respectively. In conclusion, under the conditions of this study, none of the immunogens for VL control was sufficiently effective to protect dogs against infection. On the other hand, use of collars impregnated with insecticide seems to constitute a method with better prognosis, corroborating other studies in this field.
The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence and risk factors for human papillomavirus (HPV) infection in the Southern region of the State of Bahia, evaluating the performance of alternative complementary methods for cervical lesion detection. Cervical samples from women who attended healthcare units were collected and diagnosed by visual inspection, cervical cytology and nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Moreover, hemi-nested PCR was performed to detect different HPV genotypes. The prevalence of HPV infection was 47·7%, with genotype 16 detected in most cases. Infection was associated with dyspareunia and bleeding (P < 0·001, odds ratio (OR) 5·6, 95% confidence interval (CI) 2·815–11·14) and hormonal contraceptive use (P = 0·007, OR 2·33, 95% CI 1·25–4·34). There was a positive correlation between positive PCR and positive visual inspection, cervical cytology and symptoms reported. Furthermore, visual inspection was twice as specific, and had a greater positive predictive value than cytology. We showed a high prevalence of HPV infection in Southern Bahia, with HPV 16 being the most common type, and visual inspection being most effective at detecting HPV lesions, corroborating the suggestion that it can be applied in routine gynecologic examinations for low-income populations.
Euthanasia of infected dogs is one of the measures adopted in Brazil to control visceral leishmaniasis (VL) in endemic areas. To detect infected dogs, animals are screened with the rapid test DPP® Visceral Canine Leishmaniasis for detection of antibodies against K26/K39 fusion antigens of amastigotes (DPP). DPP-positives are confirmed with an immunoenzymatic assay probing soluble antigens of promastigotes (ELISA), while DPP-negatives are considered free of infection. Here, 975 dogs from an endemic region were surveyed by using DPP, ELISA and real-time PCR (qPCR) for the diagnosis of VL. When DPP-negative dogs were tested by qPCR applied in blood and lymph node aspirates, 174/887 (19·6%) were positive in at least one sample. In a second sampling using 115 cases, the DPP-negative dogs were tested by qPCR in blood, lymph node and conjunctival swab samples, and 36/79 (45·6%) were positive in at least one sample. Low-to-moderate pairwise agreement was observed between all possible pair of tests. In conclusion, the official diagnosis of VL in dogs in Brazilian endemic areas failed to accuse an expressive number of infected animals and the impact of the low accuracy of serological tests in the success of euthanasia-based measure for VL control need to be assessed.
The Dark Energy Survey is undertaking an observational programme imaging 1/4 of the southern hemisphere sky with unprecedented photometric accuracy. In the process of observing millions of faint stars and galaxies to constrain the parameters of the dark energy equation of state, the Dark Energy Survey will obtain pre-discovery images of the regions surrounding an estimated 100 gamma-ray bursts over 5 yr. Once gamma-ray bursts are detected by, e.g., the Swift satellite, the DES data will be extremely useful for follow-up observations by the transient astronomy community. We describe a recently-commissioned suite of software that listens continuously for automated notices of gamma-ray burst activity, collates information from archival DES data, and disseminates relevant data products back to the community in near-real-time. Of particular importance are the opportunities that non-public DES data provide for relative photometry of the optical counterparts of gamma-ray bursts, as well as for identifying key characteristics (e.g., photometric redshifts) of potential gamma-ray burst host galaxies. We provide the functional details of the DESAlert software, and its data products, and we show sample results from the application of DESAlert to numerous previously detected gamma-ray bursts, including the possible identification of several heretofore unknown gamma-ray burst hosts.
Little is known about the mental health of partners of survivors of high levels of trauma in post-conflict countries.
We studied 677 spouse dyads (n = 1354) drawn from a community survey (response 82.4%) in post-conflict Timor-Leste. We used culturally adapted measures of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), psychological distress, explosive anger and grief.
Latent class analysis identified three classes of couples: class 1, comprising women with higher trauma events (TEs), men with intermediate TEs (19%); class 2, including men with higher TEs, women with lower TEs (23%); and class 3, comprising couples in which men and women had lower TE exposure (58%) (the reference group). Men and women partners of survivors of higher TE exposure (classes 1 and 2) had increased symptoms of explosive anger and grief compared with the reference class (class 3). Women partners of survivors of higher TE exposure (class 2) had a 20-fold increased rate of PTSD symptoms compared with the reference class, a pattern that was not evident for men living with women exposed to higher levels of trauma (class 1).
Men and women living with survivors of higher levels of trauma showed an increase in symptoms of grief and explosive anger. The manifold higher rate of PTSD symptoms amongst women living with men exposed to high levels of trauma requires replication. It is important to assess the mental health of partners when treating survivors of high levels of trauma in post-conflict settings.
Schizophrenia patients have a higher prevalence of type 2 diabetes mellitus with impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) than normals. We examined the relationship between IGT and clinical phenotypes or cognitive deficits in first-episode, drug-naïve (FEDN) Han Chinese patients with schizophrenia.
A total of 175 in-patients were compared with 31 healthy controls on anthropometric measures and fasting plasma levels of glucose, insulin and lipids. They were also compared using a 75 g oral glucose tolerance test and the homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR). Neurocognitive functioning was assessed using the MATRICS Consensus Cognitive Battery (MCCB). Patient psychopathology was assessed using the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS).
Of the patients, 24.5% had IGT compared with none of the controls, and they also had significantly higher levels of fasting blood glucose and 2-h glucose after an oral glucose load, and were more insulin resistant. Compared with those patients with normal glucose tolerance, the IGT patients were older, had a later age of onset, higher waist or hip circumference and body mass index, higher levels of low-density lipoprotein and triglycerides and higher insulin resistance. Furthermore, IGT patients had higher PANSS total and negative symptom subscale scores, but no greater cognitive impairment except on the emotional intelligence index of the MCCB.
IGT occurs with greater frequency in FEDN schizophrenia, and shows association with demographic and anthropometric parameters, as well as with clinical symptoms but minimally with cognitive impairment during the early course of the disorder.
We conducted a longitudinal assessment in 466 underweight and 446 normal-weight children aged 6–24 months living in the urban slum of Dhaka, Bangladesh to determine the association between vitamin D and other micronutrient status with upper respiratory tract infection (URI) and acute lower respiratory infection (ALRI). Incidence rate ratios of URI and ALRI were estimated using multivariable generalized estimating equations. Our results indicate that underweight children with insufficient and deficient vitamin D status were associated with 20% and 23–25% reduced risk of URI, respectively, compared to children with sufficient status. Underweight children, those with serum retinol deficiency were at 1·8 [95% confidence interval (CI) 1·4–2·4] times higher risk of ALRI than those with retinol sufficiency. In normal-weight children there were no significant differences between different vitamin D status and the incidence of URI and ALRI. However, normal-weight children with zinc insufficiency and those that were serum retinol deficient had 1·2 (95% CI 1·0–1·5) times higher risk of URI and 1·9 (95% CI 1·4–2·6) times higher risk of ALRI, respectively. Thus, our results should encourage efforts to increase the intake of retinol-enriched food or supplementation in this population. However, the mechanisms through which vitamin D exerts beneficial effects on the incidence of childhood respiratory tract infection still needs further research.
The Vibrant Soundbridge is an active middle-ear implant for hearing rehabilitation that is usually placed in the long process of the incus or round window. This study reports on the unusual implant attachment to the short process of the incus in a patient with ear malformation, and describes their audiological and clinical outcomes.
Case report and literature review.
Audiological evaluation with the Vibrant Soundbridge implant showed a pure tone average of 31 dB. The speech test, at 65 dB HL, revealed correct recognition of 92 per cent of disyllabic words. The Glasgow Hearing Aid Benefit Profile showed high levels of satisfaction, hearing aid use and benefit.
Fixation of the Vibrant Soundbridge implant on the short process of the incus is a feasible option, with good clinical and audiological outcomes. Coupling the floating mass transducer to the short process of the incus is a good surgical option, especially when the long process and the oval or round window are inaccessible.
The aim of this study was to determine the seroprevalence of Toxoplasma gondii infection in free-range chickens from Uberlândia, Minas Gerais state, Brazil, and characterize the genotypic and phenotypic features of two isolates of this parasite, considering the importance of these hosts in the epidemiology of toxoplasmosis. Serum samples from 108 free-range chickens were obtained from ten different districts, and submitted to the modified agglutination test (MAT) for the presence of anti-T. gondii antibodies, and brain and heart tissue samples from infected chickens were processed for mouse bioassay. An overall seroprevalence of 71·3% was found and antibody titres ranged from 16 to 4096. After confirmation of seropositivity by mouse bioassay, the determination of the T. gondii genotypes of two isolates was performed by PCR–RFLP, using primers for the following markers: SAG1, SAG2, SAG3, BTUB, GRA6, c22–8, c29–2, L358, PK1, new SAG2, Apico and CS3. These T. gondii isolates, designated TgChBrUD1and TgChBrUD2, were obtained from heart samples of free-range chickens. The TgChBrUD1 isolate belonged to ToxoDB PCR–RFLP genotype 11 and the TgChBrUD2 isolate belonged to ToxoDB PCR–RFLP genotype 6. Both isolates demonstrated high virulence in a rodent model, with the TgChBrUD1 isolate able to induce brain cysts, in accord with its pattern of multiplication rates in human fibroblast culture. Taken together, these results reveal high prevalence of T. gondii infection in free-range chickens throughout Uberlândia, indicating an important degree of oocyst environmental contamination and the existence of considerable risk for T. gondii transmission to humans by consumption of free-range chicken as a food source.
Skin samples were used to compare microscopy methods used to quantify collagen with potential applicability to resolve time-dependent collagen deposition during skin wound healing in rats. Skin wounds by secondary intention were made in rats and tissue fragments were collected every 7 days for 21 days. Collagen content determined by biochemical analysis was compared with collagen measured by point counting (PC) on histological skin sections stained by Gomori’s trichrome method (Trichrome/PC), Sirius red under polarized light (PL) microscopy (Sirius red/PL-PC), and computational color segmentation (CS) applied to sections stained with Sirius red (Sirius red/PL-CS). All microscopy methods investigated resolved the time-dependent dynamics of collagen deposition in scar tissue during skin wound healing in rats. Collagen content measured by Sirius red/PL-PC and Sirius red/PL-CS was significantly lower when compared with Trichrome/PC. The Trichrome/PC method provided overestimated values of collagen compared with biochemical analysis. In the early stages of wound healing, which shows high production of noncollagenous molecules, Sirius red/PL-CS and Sirius red/PL-PC methods were more suitable for quantification of collagen fibers. Trichrome staining did not allow clear separation between collagenous and noncollagenous elements in skin samples, introducing a marked bias in collagen quantification.
A microsporidian infecting the skeletal muscle of hybrid jundiara (Leiarius marmoratus × Pseudoplatystoma reticulatum) in a commercial aquaculture facility in Brazil is described. Affected fish exhibited massive infections in the skeletal muscle that were characterized by large opaque foci throughout the affected fillets. Histologically, skeletal muscle was replaced by inflammatory cells and masses of microsporidial developmental stages. Generally pyriform spores had a wrinkled bi-layer spore wall and measured 4·0 × 6·0 µm. Multinucleate meronts surrounded by a simple plasma membrane were observed. The polar filament had an external membrane and a central electron dense mass. The development of sporoblasts within a sporophorous vesicle appeared synchronized. Ultrastructural observations and molecular analysis of 16S rDNA sequences revealed that the microsporidian was Pleistophora hyphessobryconis. This study is the first report of a P. hyphessobryconis infection in a non-ornamental fish.
The aim of this study was analyzed if the flour or flaxseed oil treatment contributes to body composition in male rats subjected to early weaning. Pups were weaned for separation from mother at 14 (early weaning, EW) and 21 days (control, C). At 21 days, part of the pups was evaluated (C21 v. EW21). After 21 days, control (C60) was fed with control diet. EW was divided in control (EWC60); flaxseed flour (EWFF60); flaxseed oil (EWFO60) diets until 60 days. Body mass, length and body composition by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry were determined. EW21 (v. C21) and EWC60 (v. C60 and EWFF60) showed lower (P<0.05) mass, length and body composition. EWFO60 (v. C60 and EWFF60) showed lower (P<0.05) body mass and length, body and trunk lean mass, bone mineral density and content and bone area. Flaxseed flour, in comparison with flaxseed oil, contributes to recovery of body composition after early weaning.
Avian pathogenic Escherichia coli (APEC) cause extra intestinal disease in chickens, turkeys, and other avian species via respiratory tract infection, giving rise to typical signs related to colibacillosis, such as: septicaemia, enteritis, granulomas, omphalitis, sinusitis, airsacculitis, arthritis/synovitis, peritonitis, pericarditis, perihepatitis, cellulitis, and swollen head syndrome. Disease caused by APEC strains results in significant financial losses to the poultry industry worldwide. This review provides essential information on the diagnosis of APEC. The information cited in this review will elucidate the various forms of APEC diagnosis while demonstrating the, lack of a precise diagnosis of this strain. The diagnoses mentioned herein reinforce the necessity to make progress toward a more accurate diagnosis of APEC to contribute to its reduction in poultry flocks.
Soybean oil (SBO) is rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids (FA) and rumen bypass of SBO can contribute to increase the polyunsaturated FA proportion in milk fat. Citrus pulp (CPP) is a source of antioxidants but there is little information on the effects of CP administration on milk properties. This study was performed to determine the role of rumen microorganisms in the transfer of antioxidants from CPP into milk when cows receive SBO as a source of polyunsaturated FA. Four ruminally fistulated lactating Holstein cows were assigned to a 4 × 4 Latin square design with a 2 × 2 factorial arrangement of treatments: (1) SBO administered in the rumen; (2) SBO infused in the abomasum; (3) SBO + CPP administered in the rumen; and (4) SBO + CPP infused in the abomasum. Product and site of administration had no effect on yield of milk components. Concentrations of total polyphenols and flavonoids, reducing power and production of conjugated diene (CD) hydroperoxides in milk were not affected by products, but infusion in the abomasum compared with administration in the rumen increased production of CD. Milk fat FA profile was not affected by products. However, cows infused in the abomasum compared with those administered in the rumen showed lower proportions of short-chain and monounsaturated FA and higher proportions of polyunsaturated, omega 3 and omega 6 FA in milk fat, which resulted in enhanced health-promoting index of milk. Administration of SBO and CPP (0·2 + 1·0 kg/d) in the rumen or the abomasum resulted in similar milk antioxidant properties, thus suggesting that the rumen microbes have little involvement in the metabolism of antioxidants from CPP.
The precocious interruption of lactation is a prime factor for developmental plasticity. Here we analyzed whether flour or flaxseed oil treatment contributes to body and brain mass in male rats subjected to early weaning. Pups were weaned for separation from their mother at 14 (early weaning, EW) and 21 days (control, C). At 21 days, some of the pups were evaluated (C21 v. EW21). After 21 days, control pups (C60) were fed a control diet. EW pups were divided into those fed a control diet (EWC60), those given flaxseed flour (EWFF60), and those given flaxseed oil (EWFO60) until 60 days. EW21 showed lower body and absolute brain mass and higher relative brain mass. At 60 days, EWC60 and EWFO60 had lower body mass. With regard to relative brain mass, EWC60 was heavier; EWFO60 had lower values compared with EWC60 and higher values compared with C60 and EWFF60. These results indicated that flaxseed flour, in comparison with flaxseed oil, contributes to brain development after EW.
This paper deals with the stiffness analysis of multibody systems using the Matrix Structural Analysis—MSA. This methodology allows us to obtain the stiffness matrix of the structure from the stiffness properties of each element. First the MSA method is described and its application is detailed using an L-structure in order to make easy its understanding. Numerical and experimental results obtained for the L-structure and a 6-RSS parallel manipulator, follow to prove the validity of the methodology.
Dietary glutamine (Gln) supplementation improves intestinal function in several stressful conditions. Therefore, in the present study, the effects of dietary Gln supplementation on the core body temperature (Tcore), bacterial translocation (BT) and intestinal permeability of mice subjected to acute heat stress were evaluated. Male Swiss mice (4 weeks old) were implanted with an abdominal temperature sensor and randomly assigned to one of the following groups fed isoenergetic and isoproteic diets for 7 d before the experimental trials: group fed the standard AIN-93G diet and exposed to a high ambient temperature (39°C) for 2 h (H-NS); group fed the AIN-93G diet supplemented with l-Gln and exposed to a high temperature (H-Gln); group fed the standard AIN-93G diet and not exposed to a high temperature (control, C-NS). Mice were orally administered diethylenetriaminepentaacetic acid radiolabelled with technetium (99mTc) for the assessment of intestinal permeability or 99mTc-Escherichia coli for the assessment of BT. Heat exposure increased Tcore (approximately 41°C during the experimental trial), intestinal permeability and BT to the blood and liver (3 h after the experimental trial) in mice from the H-NS group relative to those from the C-NS group. Dietary Gln supplementation attenuated hyperthermia and prevented the increases in intestinal permeability and BT induced by heat exposure. No correlations were observed between the improvements in gastrointestinal function and the attenuation of hyperthermia by Gln. Our findings indicate that dietary Gln supplementation preserved the integrity of the intestinal barrier and reduced the severity of hyperthermia during heat exposure. The findings also indicate that these Gln-mediated effects occurred through independent mechanisms.
Low levels of serum adiponectin (i.e. hypoadiponectinaemia) are a marker of cardiometabolic risk in overweight children. It is not clear whether early-life factors may play a role in the development of hypoadiponectinaemia. We investigated whether antenatal factors and postnatal growth are associated with childhood adiponectin levels. This was an observational study in a birth cohort (Vulnerable Windows Cohort Study). Anthropometry was measured at birth, at 6 weeks, every 3 months up to 2 years and then every 6 months. Fasting glucose, insulin, lipids and adiponectin were measured at a mean age 11.5 years. Data on 323 children were analysed with age- and sex-adjusted multivariate analyses. The sizes of mother, placenta, fetus and newborn were not significantly associated with adiponectin levels. Current weight, body mass index (BMI), fat mass, waist circumference, glucose, insulin resistance [homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR)], triglycerides and systolic blood pressure were inversely related to adiponectin (P < 0.05). Faster growth in BMI during late infancy and childhood was associated with lower adiponectin levels (P < 0.05). After adjusting for current waist circumference, faster growth in BMI during early infancy was positively associated with adiponectin (P < 0.01). Faster growth in BMI during childhood was inversely associated (P < 0.001). These associations were similar after adjusting for HOMA-IR. We concluded that antenatal factors are not determinants of childhood adiponectin levels. Faster growth in BMI during infancy is associated with higher levels, whereas faster rates during childhood are associated with hypoadiponectinaemia. Hypoadiponectinaemia is a marker of a more adverse cardiometabolic profile in Afro-Caribbean children.