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This research communication presents an automatic method for the counting of somatic cells in buffalo milk, which includes the application of a fuzzy clustering method and image processing techniques (somatic cell count with fuzzy clustering and image processing|, SCCFCI). Somatic cell count (SCC) in milk is the main biomarker for assessing milk quality and it is traditionally performed by exhaustive methods consisting of the visual observation of cells in milk smears through a microscope, which generates uncertainties associated with human interpretation. Unlike other similar works, the proposed method applies the Fuzzy C-Means (FCM) method as a preprocessing step in order to separate the images (objects) of the cells into clusters according to the color intensity. This contributes signficantly to the performance of the subsequent processing steps (thresholding, segmentation and recognition/identification). Two methods of thresholding were evaluated and the Watershed Transform was used for the identification and separation of nearby cells. A detailed statistical analysis of the results showed that the SCCFCI method is able to provide results which are consistent with those obtained by conventional counting. This method therefore represents a viable alternative for quality control in buffalo milk production.
Human visceral leishmaniasis (HVL) cases are important public health problems due to their zoonotic aspect, with high rates of morbidity and mortality in Brazil. The aim of this this study was to identify spatial patterns in both rates of HVL cases in Brazilian states during the period from 2006 to 2015. This is an ecological study, using geoprocessing tools to create choropleth maps, based on secondary data from open access platforms, to identify priority areas for control actions of the disease. Data were collected in 2017 and analysed according to the global and local Moran's I, using TerraView 4.2.2 software. Similar clusters were observed in neighbouring municipalities in thematic maps of HVL, suggesting spatial similarity in the distribution of the disease in humans mainly in the North and Northeast Regions, which concentrate the states with the highest rates of HVL. Heterogeneous spatial patterns were observed in the distribution of HVL, which show municipalities that need higher priority in the intensification of disease surveillance and control strategies.
Expectant parents who live through perinatal loss experience intense grief, which is not always acknowledged or accepted. A screening tool to detect bereaved parents’ grief reactions can guide professionals, including perinatal palliative care teams, to provide follow-up for those in need. This review's goal is to identify and synthesize the international published literature on existent instruments specifically measuring the grieving process after any perinatal loss and to identify factors that could moderate grief reactions.
Systematic review (PROSPERO # CRD42018092555) with critical synthesis. PUBMED, Cochrane, and PsycINFO databases were searched in English language articles using the keywords “perinatal” AND (“grief” OR “bereavement” OR mourning) AND (“scale” OR “questionnaire” OR “measure” OR “assessment”) up to May 2018. Eligibility criteria included every study using a measure to assess perinatal grief after all kinds of perinatal losses, including validations and translations to other languages and interventions designed to alleviate grief symptoms.
A total of 67 papers met inclusion criteria. Seven instruments measuring perinatal grief published between 1984 and 2002 are described. The Perinatal Grief Scale (PGS) was used in 53 of the selected studies. Of those, 39 analyzed factors associated with grief reactions. Six articles used PGS scores to evaluate pre- and post-bereavement interventions. Studies in English language only might have limited the number of articles.
Significance of results
The PGS is the most used standardized measures to assess grief after perinatal loss. All parents living through any kind of perinatal loss should be screened.
The seminal characteristics of Moenkhausia oligolepis are described. Three males were induced with a single dose of carp pituitary. Semen was collected 6 h after induction, and diluted in dibasic sodium phosphate extender solution. For motility analysis, 1 µl of diluted semen was added to 10 µl of distilled water to achieve gamete activation. The average duration of total motility was 76.67 s; while the average sperm motility rate at intervals of 15 s was 95.3, 85.3, 59.6, 31.7, 13.0, 4.6 and 1.2%. To determine sperm concentration in samples, 0.5 μl of semen was diluted with 500 μl of glutaraldehyde. An aliquot of 10 μl of this dilution was utilized for cell counting. An average count of 4.97 × 109 ± 3.46 sperm/ml was obtained. Morphological analyses were performed using eosin–nigrosine dye; 20.33% of the sperm were observed to be dead. Live sperm, comprising the other 79.67%, had an average length of approximately 30 µm, with a head diameter of 4.488 ± 0.7 µm; and a flagella plus mid-piece length of 26.071 ± 12.4 µm. Of those sperm, 69% had a normal morphology, while 31% had primary and secondary abnormalities. The observed abnormality rate did not have a detrimental effect on artificial fertilization potential for the species. The description of the seminal characteristics of a species is one of the most important sets of information required for artificial reproduction of fish in captivity. It also contributes significantly to the total biological knowledge of the studied species.
Nutritional disorders during the perinatal period cause cardiometabolic dysfunction, which is observable in the early overfeeding (EO) experimental model. Therefore, severe caloric restriction has the potential of affecting homeostasis through the same epigenetic mechanisms, and its effects need elucidation. This work aims to determine the impact of food restriction (FR) during puberty in early overfed obese and non-obese animals in adult life. Three days after delivery (PN3), Wistar rats were separated into two groups: normal litter (NL; 9 pups) and small litter (SL; 3 pups). At PN30, some offspring were subjected to FR (50%) until PN60, or maintained with free access to standard chow. NL and SL animals submitted to food restriction (NLFR and SLFR groups) were kept in recovery with free access to standard chow from PN60 until PN120. Body weight and food intake were monitored throughout the experimental period. At PN120 cardiovascular parameters were analyzed and the animals were euthanized for sample collection. SLNF and SLFR offspring were overweight and had increased adiposity. Differences in blood pressure were observed only between obese and non-obese animals. Obese and FR animals have cardiac remodeling showing cardiomyocyte hypertrophy and the presence of interstitial and perivascular fibrosis. FR animals also show increased expression of AT1 and AT2 receptors and of total ERK and p-ERK. The present study showed that EO leads to the obese phenotype and cardiovascular disruptions. Interestingly, we demonstrated that severe FR during puberty leads to cardiac remodeling.
Diet during pregnancy is related to several maternal and infant health outcomes; however, the relationship between maternal dietary glycaemic index (GI) and glycaemic load (GL) and gestational weight gain (GWG) or newborn birth weight is controversial. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the relationship between maternal dietary GI and GL and GWG and birth weight. A cohort of adult pregnant women with usual obstetric risk was followed in Botucatu, SP, Brazil. Two 24-h dietary recalls were collected in each gestational trimester (<14, 24–27, 31–34 weeks), one in person and the other by telephone. GI and GL were determined using the software Nutrition Data System for Research. GWG was obtained from medical records and evaluated as the weekly GWG between the second and third gestational trimesters. Newborn birth weight z-score in relation to gestational age was evaluated according to Intergrowth-21st Project recommendations. A multiple linear regression model, adjusted for potential confounders, showed a one-point increase in the GI resulted in a mean decrease of 12·9 (95 % CI –21·48, –4·24) g in weekly GWG; GL was not associated with this outcome. The birth weight z-score was not associated with GI (P = 0·763) or GL (P = 0·317). In conclusion, in a cohort of pregnant women considered at usual risk for obstetric complications, maternal dietary GI was negatively associated with weekly GWG in the second and third gestational trimesters. No association was observed between GL and GWG, and neither GI nor GL was associated with birth weight z-score.
Modern lifestyle increases the prevalence of obesity and its co-morbidities in the young population. High-salt (HS) diets are associated with hypertension and cardiac remodelling. The present study evaluated the potential effects of cardiometabolic programming induced by HS intake during puberty in lean and obese rats. Additionally, we investigated whether HS could exacerbate the impairment of cardiovascular parameters in adult life due to postnatal early overnutrition (PO). At postnatal day 3 (PN3), twenty-four litters of Wistar rats were divided into two groups: normal litter (NL, nine pups/dam) and small litter (SL, three pups/dam) throughout the lactation period; weaning was at PN21. At PN30, the pups were subdivided into two more groups: NL plus HS (NLHS) and SL plus HS (SLHS). HS intake was from PN30 until PN60. Cardiovascular parameters were evaluated at PN120. SL rats became overweight at adulthood due to persistent hyperphagia; however, HS exposure during puberty reduced the weight gain and food intake of NLHS and SLHS. Both HS and obesity raised the blood pressure, impaired baro- and chemoreflex sensitivity and induced cardiac remodelling but no worsening was observed in the association of these factors, except a little reduction in the angiotensin type-2 receptor in the hearts from SLHS animals. Our results suggest that the response of newborn offspring to PO and juveniles to a HS diet leads to significant changes in cardiovascular parameters in adult rats. This damage may be accompanied by impairment of both angiotensin signalling and antioxidant defence in the heart.
Benzimidazole derivatives such as albendazole (ABZ) and mebendazole are important molecules used in helminthic treatment. Neurocysticercosis is the main cause of acquired epilepsy throughout the world and is currently treated with ABZ. New molecules have been studied in order to aid in the treatment of this neglected tropical disease, among them RCB15 and RCB20. The aim of this study was to evaluate the metabolic impact of RCB15 and RCB20 on Taenia crassiceps cysticerci intracranially inoculated in Balb/c mice. Thirty days after the inoculation the mice were treated with 50 mg kg−1 of RCB15, RCB20, ABZ or NaCl 0.9%. The euthanasia and cysticerci removal were performed 24 h after the treatment. The cysticerci were analysed through high performance liquid chromatography. After the treatments, there was an impairment in the main energetic pathways such as glycolytic pathway, homolactic fermentation or in mitochondrion energy production detected through the decrease in pyruvate, lactate, oxaloacetate, malate and fumarate concentrations. This induced the parasite to resort to alternative energetic pathways such as proteins catabolism, propionate fermentation and fatty acids oxidation. Therefore, benzimidazole derivatives are a promising alternative to ABZ use as they also reach the brain tissue and induce a metabolic stress in the cysticerci.
The University of São Paulo Twin Panel (Painel USP de Gêmeos), based at the Institute of Psychology of the University of São Paulo, started formally in 2017. Our registry is new, but in only two years of formal existence, it comprises a volunteer sample of 4826 registered individuals (98% twins and 2% higher-order multiples), recruited at the University of São Paulo and by social media campaigns. Our main aim is to conduct and promote research with twins on psychological processes and behavior. The University of São Paulo is the largest higher education and research institution in South America, and the Painel USP de Gêmeos has great potential for fostering research on twin-related issues from a psychological perspective in Brazil and South America.
The Brazilian Network for Health Technology Assessment (REBRATS) is a network of collaborating centers and teaching and research institutions, focused on the generation and synthesis of scientific evidence in the field of health technology assessment. Currently, the network is composed of 119 member institutions and mobilizes approximately 1,094 researchers and 4,998 relations. The objective of this study was to evaluate the member institutions of REBRATS.
The evaluation process was developed in seven stages, including the identification of the objectives of the Network; identification of evaluation criteria; selection of performance indicators for each criterion; identification of the measures appropriate to each indicator; data collection and analysis; classification of the institutions and production of the final report.
The evaluation of the member institutions of REBRATS mapped the capacity of these institutions to produce health technology assessment activities. The evaluation also provided information on the advances and challenges of health technology assessment in the country. In the long term, the initiative will contribute to the strengthening of the evaluation of health technology in Brazil, since the weaknesses of these institutions in the development of activities were mapped.
The production of this study will contribute to the dissemination of the evaluation methodology at the national and international level. This study is one of the few initiatives that exist in the world on the evaluation of networks and will contribute to the strengthening of the evaluation of health technology in Brazil.
The use of cactus cladodes in animal feed is well-established in semi-arid areas. The cactus Nopalea cochenillifera (L.) Salm-Dyck cladodes (Nopalea) have high acceptability amongst dairy cows and are resistant to carmine cochineal insects (Dactylopius opuntiae Cockerell), a problem in semi-arid regions, but in regions of prolonged drought, it has lower productivity compared with the cactus Opuntia stricta (Haw.) Haw cladodes (Opuntia), which is also resistant to the insect. The objective of the current study was to evaluate the intake and content of digestible material of dry matter (DM) and its components, feeding behaviour, microbial protein synthesis, nitrogen balance, blood parameters, performance and milk composition of Holstein cows fed a control diet, containing either Nopalea or Opuntia associated with different concentrate levels (225, 275, 325 and 375 g/kg). Ten cows with an initial average milk production of 20 ± 2.1 kg/day were distributed into a double 5 × 5 Latin square design. Diets containing 775 g roughage/kg and 225 g concentrate/kg promoted similar responses to the analysed variables regardless of the cactus cladode used, except for digestibility of neutral detergent fibre. Diets containing higher proportions of concentrate (325 and 375 g/kg) promoted greater DM intake and 3.5% fat-corrected milk yield. The diet containing Opuntia at 775:225 g/kg roughage:concentrate proportion is as effective as the control diet for Holstein cows producing 20 kg of milk/day. To promote greater milk production, higher proportions of concentrate should be added to diets using Opuntia.
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.
Effective ventilation during cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is essential to reduce morbidity and mortality rates in cardiac arrest. Hyperventilation during CPR reduces the efficiency of compressions and coronary perfusion.
How could ventilation in CPR be optimized? The objective of this study was to evaluate non-invasive ventilator support using different devices.
The study compares the regularity and intensity of non-invasive ventilation during simulated, conventional CPR and ventilatory support using three distinct ventilation devices: a standard manual resuscitator, with and without airway pressure manometer, and an automatic transport ventilator. Student’s t-test was used to evaluate statistical differences between groups. P values <.05 were regarded as significant.
Peak inspiratory pressure during ventilatory support and CPR was significantly increased in the group with manual resuscitator without manometer when compared with the manual resuscitator with manometer support (MS) group or automatic ventilator (AV) group.
The study recommends for ventilatory support the use of a manual resuscitator equipped with MS or AVs, due to the risk of reduction in coronary perfusion pressure and iatrogenic thoracic injury during hyperventilation found using manual resuscitator without manometer.
LacerdaRS, de LimaFCA, BastosLP, VincoAF, SchneiderFBA, CoelhoYL, FernandesHGC, BacalhauJMR, BermudesIMS, da SilvaCF, da SilvaLP, PezatoR. Benefits of Manometer in Non-Invasive Ventilatory Support. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2017;32(6):615–620.
Anemia is a major problem, frequently resulting from iron deficiency (1). Guidelines recommend the administration of intravenous (IV) iron, leaving blood transfusions for critical patients due to the potential impact in length of stay (LOS) and mortality (2,3). We aimed to characterize IV iron sucrose utilization and health resource utilization in anemic patients.
This is a retrospective ongoing cohort study. Patient records from a general Portuguese Hospital with an administration of iron sucrose in 2014–2015 were reviewed. Adult anemic patients with at least one hemoglobin (Hb) evaluation before and after the administration of IV iron were included. Endpoints assessed were: Hb level (baseline, 4 and 8 weeks after), anemia correction rate at weeks 4 and 8, blood transfusions, length of stay (LOS), rate of readmissions (<30 days) and inpatient mortality. Statistical analysis included non-parametric and chi-square tests to assess differences between groups and a logistic regression model, using a 5 percent significance level.
Data was collected for 401 patients (63.1 percent female; mean age Standard Deviation, SD: 62.6 (21.7) years) and 431 IV iron sucrose administration episodes. Mean cumulative iron dose was 679.5 mg. Baseline Hb level was 84.5 g/l and increased to 94.3 g/l (week 4) and to 103.0 g/l (week 8). Blood transfusions were performed in 53.8 percent of the episodes. Overall 157 (36.4 percent) episodes had a >20 g/l increase in Hb level. Blood transfusions were associated with a higher proportion of Hb level increase >20 g/l (44.0 percent versus 27.9 percent, p<.001). The overall mean LOS was 15.3 days, although episodes with transfusions had a significantly longer duration (17.5 days versus 12.7 days; p<.001). Overall readmission rate was 25.8 percent, with a higher proportion in episodes with blood transfusions (29.3 percent versus 21.6 percent). A total of 36 patients (9.0 percent) died at the hospital before discharge. Transfusions performed during or after IV iron administration increased 3.1 times the risk of in-hospital death (95 percent Confidence Interval, CI: 1.3-7.0; p = .008), after adjusting for age and sex.
We observed a high rate of blood transfusions in this cohort treated with intravenous iron sucrose for anemia. Transfusions were associated with substantial burden of resource consumption and in-hospital mortality.
Acanthamoeba spp. are free-living protists widely distributed in environment, able to cause keratitis, encephalitis and skin lesions in humans and animals. Acanthamoeba spp. exist in two forms: an infective trophozoite and a dormant cyst. Several factors contribute to the pathogenesis of Acanthamoeba spp. The parasite adhesion to the host cell is the primary step for infection and is mediated by a mannose binding-protein, expressed in the surface and considered the main pathogenicity factor in Acanthamoeba spp. So far, there was no evidence of another surface protein of Acanthamoeba spp. relevant for host invasion or infection by these organisms. The aims of this study were to identify and characterize an Acanthamoeba castellanii surface protein and to evaluate its diagnostic potential. In silico predictions of surface proteins allowed to identify the A. castellanii calreticulin as a possible surface antigen. The coding sequence of a predicted extracellular domain of A. castellanii calreticulin was cloned by in vivo homologous recombination and the recombinant polypeptide (AcCRT29–130) was produced. Its immunodiagnostic potential was assessed in a recombinant antigen-based ELISA with sera from experimentally infected rats that developed keratitis and encephalitis, and sera from patients with encephalitis. The AcCRT29–130 was significantly more recognized by sera from encephalitis infected rats in comparison with the non-infected controls. Human sera from encephalitis patients, however presented no significant response. These results showed the AcCRT29–130 potential for A. castellanii infection immunodiagnosis in animals, with further studies being required for assessment of its use for human infections.
Several studies provide evidence of the importance of future time perspective (FTP) for individual success. However, little research addresses the relationship between FTP and personality traits, particularly if FTP can mediate their influence on behavior. In this study we analyze the mediating of FTP in the influence of personality traits on the way adolescents live their life at school. Sample consisted in 351 students, aged from 14 to 18 years-old, at different schooling levels. Instruments were the Portuguese version of the MMPI-A, particularly the PSY-5 dimensions (Aggressiveness, Psychoticism, Disconstraint, Neuroticism, Introversion), a FTP questionnaire, and a survey on school life, involving several indicators of achievement, social integration, and overall satisfaction. With the exception of Neuroticism, the results show significant mediation effects (p < .001) of FTP on most relationships between PSY-5 dimensions and school life variables. Concerning Disconstraint, FTP mediated its influence on overall satisfaction (β = –.125) and school achievement (β = –.106). In the case of Introversion, significant mediation effects occurred for interpersonal difficulties (β = .099) and participation in extracurricular activities (β = –.085). FTP was also a mediator of Psychoticism influence in overall satisfaction (β = –.094), interpersonal difficulties (β = .057), and behavior problems (β = .037). Finally, FTP mediated the influence of Aggressiveness on overall satisfaction (β = –.061), interpersonal difficulties (β = .040), achievement (β = –.052), and behavior problems (β = .023). Results are discussed considering the importance of FTP in the impact of some personality structural characteristics in students’ school adaptation.