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Appropriate nutrition is vital for growth and cognitive development in childhood. Vitamin D, omega 3, zinc, iodine, and iron are important micronutrients for neurodevelopment(1). National survey data suggest that children in Ireland are not meeting recommended intakes of these key nutrients(2). The aim of this research was to determine mean daily intakes of vitamin D, omega 3, zinc, iodine, and iron among school-aged children and examine the relationship between intakes and academic performance.
Materials and Methods:
Anthropometric and dietary data was collected from pairs of twins. Four-day food diaries were used by parents to record all food, drinks and supplements consumed. Diaries were entered into the analytical software, Nutritics, which provided the nutrient content of foods consumed. Academic performance was assessed using an online questionnaire. Teachers were asked to rank the child's performance in reading, writing, maths and overall performance using a 5-point likert scale, which was then categorised into “Average” and “Above Average”. SPSS V24 was used for statistical analysis.
Data was collected from 51 pairs of twins aged 8–10 years, and 60% of participants were female. Mean nutrient intakes were as follows; vitamin D = 2.34μg (SD = 1.71), omega-3 = 0.68 g (SD = 0.43), zinc = 7.93 mg (SD = 3.56), iodine = 140.82μg (SD = 59.26) and iron = 9.76 mg (SD = 3.050). All children met recommendations for iodine compared to iron (61%), zinc (52%) omega-3 (15%), and vitamin D (11%). Supplements contributed to 68% and 25% of vitamin D and omega 3 intakes. Meat was the largest contributor to zinc and iron. Milk contributed to ~80% of iodine intakes. Intra-twin correlations indicated a strong familial effect on nutrient intakes. Children who were ranked “above average” in all categories had significantly higher zinc and iodine intakes compared to average students.
The findings of this study concurred with previous analysis of nutrient intakes of Irish and UK children. Animal source foods including meat and milk contributed a high proportion to intakes of key nutrients. Children ranked above average in school had higher nutrient intakes. Public health initiatives should emphasise the importance of key nutrients related to cognitive development and subsequent academic outcomes.
This seminar was held at Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, on 27 May 2016. It was jointly organised by BAAL members Nicola Bermingham (Heriot-Watt University) and Gwennan Higham (Swansea University) in collaboration with COST Action IS1306 New Speakers in a Multilingual Europe: Opportunities and Challenges, and supported by the Intercultural Research Centre and the Department of Languages and Intercultural Studies at Heriot-Watt University. Ten papers and two keynote speeches were given. The keynote speakers were Professor Alison Phipps (Glasgow University) and Professor Máiréad Nic Craith (Heriot-Watt University). A round-table discussion was also held, with invited speakers including Ms Mandy Watts from Education Scotland; Professor Bernadette O'Rourke, chair of COST Action IS1306; Dr Cassie Smith Christmas, University of the Highlands and Islands; and Dr Kathryn Jones, Director of Language Policy and Research at the Welsh Centre for Language Planning.
Burnt mounds, or fulachtaí fiadh as they are known in Ireland, are probably the most common prehistoric site type in Ireland and Britain. Typically Middle–Late Bronze Age in age (although both earlier and later examples are known), they are artefact-poor and rarely associated with settlements. The function of these sites has been much debated with the most commonly cited uses being for cooking, as steam baths or saunas, for brewing, tanning, or textile processing. A number of major infrastructural development schemes in Ireland in the years 2002–2007 revealed remarkable numbers of these mounds often associated with wood-lined troughs, many of which were extremely well-preserved. This afforded an opportunity to investigate them as landscape features using environmental techniques – specifically plant macrofossils and charcoal, pollen, beetles, and multi-element analyses. This paper summarises the results from eight sites from Ireland and compares them with burnt mound sites in Great Britain. The fulachtaí fiadh which are generally in clusters, are all groundwater-fed by springs, along floodplains and at the bases of slopes. The sites are associated with the clearance of wet woodland for fuel; most had evidence of nearby agriculture and all revealed low levels of grazing. Multi-element analysis at two sites revealed elevated heavy metal concentrations suggesting that off-site soil, ash or urine had been used in the trough. Overall the evidence suggests that the most likely function for these sites is textile production involving both cleaning and/or dyeing of wool and/or natural plant fibres and as a functionally related activity to hide cleaning and tanning. Whilst further research is clearly needed to confirm if fulachtaí fiadh are part of the ‘textile revolution’ we should also recognise their important role in the rapid deforestation of the wetter parts of primary woodland and the expansion of agriculture into marginal areas during the Irish and British Bronze Ages.
The effects of wet (canned) or dry (kibbled) diets on faecal bacterial populations in the cat were investigated in eight domestic short-haired cats (four males and four females; averaging 6 years of age and 3·4 kg) in a nested design. The cats were fed ad libitum a commercially available wet diet (moisture 82·0 %, crude protein 51·7 %, fat 28·9 %, carbohydrate (CHO) 8·9 % and ash 10·6 % DM) for 5 weeks. On the fifth week, individual feed intakes and faecal outputs were determined. Fresh faecal samples were collected twice daily, mixed for homogeneity, subsampled and stored at − 85°C until analysis. The cats were then switched to a commercially available dry diet (moisture 8·5 %, crude protein 33·0 %, fat 11·0 %, CHO 49·4 % and ash 6·6 % DM) for 5 weeks, and fresh faeces were sampled as described previously. Energy intake tended to be higher in cats fed dry diets (P < 0·10), but body weight was similar between the two feeding periods (P>0·05). Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) of bacterial 16S rRNA genes amplified from DNA extracted from faeces was performed. The unweighted pair group method with arithmetic mean cluster analysis of bacterial community profiles using Pearson's correlation revealed diet-specific clustering when the same cats were fed on either a dry or a wet diet (dissimilarity between the groups, 88·6 %; P < 0·001). Subsequent cloning and sequencing of five selected distinct DGGE bands indicated that members of the Pelomonas and Fusobacteriaceae were influenced by a short-term change in diet format. This suggests that 5-week dietary exposure is sufficient to alter gastrointestinal microflora.
Controlling the grain size and morphology of cast cobalt-based components is important for optimizing a component’s in-service properties. This work investigates the role of boron on the grain size of binary cobalt–boron alloys by application of contemporary grain refinement theory. Boron solute is found to refine the width of the columnar grains but fails to promote the columnar to equiaxed transition. The lack of equiaxed grains is attributed to the thermal solidification conditions and a lack of potent nucleant particles. The refinement of the columnar grains with boron solute may be due to a growth restriction mechanism.
Uncertainties exist regarding the population risks of hospitalization due to pandemic influenza A(H1N1). Understanding these risks is important for patients, clinicians and policy makers. This study aimed to clarify these uncertainties. A national surveillance system was established for patients hospitalized with laboratory-confirmed pandemic influenza A(H1N1) in England. Information was captured on demographics, pre-existing conditions, treatment and outcomes. The relative risks of hospitalization associated with pre-existing conditions were estimated by combining the captured data with population prevalence estimates. A total of 2416 hospitalizations were reported up to 6 January 2010. Within the population, 4·7 people/100 000 were hospitalized with pandemic influenza A(H1N1). The estimated hospitalization rate of cases showed a U-shaped distribution with age. Chronic kidney disease, chronic neurological disease, chronic respiratory disease and immunosuppression were each associated with a 10- to 20-fold increased risk of hospitalization. Patients who received antiviral medication within 48 h of symptom onset were less likely to be admitted to critical care than those who received them after this time (adjusted odds ratio 0·64, 95% confidence interval 0·44–0·94, P=0·024). In England the risk of hospitalization with pandemic influenza A(H1N1) has been concentrated in the young and those with pre-existing conditions. By quantifying these risks, this study will prove useful in planning for the next winter in the northern and southern hemispheres, and for future pandemics.
Trace additions of boron to cast zirconium result in significant microstructural changes similar to those observed with additions of boron to titanium alloys. These changes include the promotion of dendritic growth and a refinement in both the prior β and α grain size. The refinement of the prior β grain size is explained using a model of grain refinement in association with values calculated from the binary Zr–B phase diagram. It is proposed that the refinement of the α phase occurs through a combination of increased nucleation and altered diffusion mechanisms during cooling through the β transus.
A meta-analysis was carried out in order to establish the energy requirements of adult cats. Publications that identified cat body weight (BW) were used to generate allometric relationships between energy requirements and BW of healthy adult cats, using log-log linear regression. Energy requirements were expressed in kcal/kg BW to be consistent with those reported by the National Research Council. Mean maintenance energy requirements were 55·1 (se 1·2) kcal/kg BW (115 treatment groups). Three allometric equations were identified to predict the energy requirements for maintenance of BW in the cat based on BW: light (53·7 kcal/kg BW− 1·061), normal (46·8 kcal/kg BW− 1·115) and heavy (131·8 kcal/kg BW− 0 ·366). When reported on lean mass, the allometric equation revealed maintenance requirements were 58·4 kcal/kg lean mass− 1·140 (adjusted R2 0·694; thirty-six treatment groups). The present review suggests that values for maintenance energy requirements based on BW alone may not be an accurate prediction and more detailed information on the age, sex and neuter status, BW and composition would enhance the ability to interpret the maintenance energy requirements of cats.
On 29 April 2009, an imported case of pandemic (H1N1) 2009 virus infection was detected in a London school. As further cases, pupils and staff members were identified, school closure and mass prophylaxis were implemented. An observational descriptive study was conducted to provide an insight into the clinical presentation and transmission dynamics in this setting. Between 15 April and 15 May 2009, 91 symptomatic cases were identified: 33 were confirmed positive for pandemic (H1N1) 2009 virus infection; 57 were tested negative; in one the results were unavailable. Transmission occurred first within the school, and subsequently outside. Attack rates were 2% in pupils (15% in the 11–12 years age group) and 17% in household contacts. The predominant symptoms were fever (97%), respiratory symptoms (91%), and sore throat (79%). Limited spread in the school may have been due to a combination of school closure and mass prophylaxis. However, transmission continued through household contacts to other schools.
The growth restriction factor is a parameter derived from binary phase diagrams and is a useful predictor for the grain refining response when a solute is added to a base alloy. This work investigates the relevance of growth restriction theory to titanium alloys where solidification rates are an order of magnitude faster than previous studies in aluminum- and magnesium-based systems. In particular, the segregation of Fe and Cr in titanium is investigated and the effects on grain size studied. It was found that the Scheil equation reasonably modeled solidification of titanium where cooling rates approach 120 °C/s, and the growth restriction factors for Fe and Cr were useful in predicting prior-β grain refinement. However, it was found that caution must be used when calculating growth restriction factors from binary phase diagrams.
The effects of an established Trichostrongylus colubriformis infection on amino acid (AA) absorption from the small intestine and their availability to other tissues were determined in lambs 48 days post infection. The lambs were fed fresh Lucerne (Medicago sativa; ∼800 g dry matter (DM)/day) and dosed with 6000 L3 T. colubriformis larvae for 6 days (n = 5) or kept as parasite free controls (n = 6). Faecal egg production was monitored every second day from day 22 to day 48. A nitrogen (N) balance was conducted on days 35 to 43 after infection, and digesta flow and AA concentration measurements were made on day 44. On day 48 after infection, blood was continuously collected from the mesenteric artery and vein, plasma harvested and AA concentrations measured. Faecal egg production peaked on the 26th day after infection (P < 0.001) and intestinal worm burdens on day 48 were greater (P < 0.001) in the infected lambs. Feed intake and liveweight gain were similar (P > 0.10) between control and infected lambs. Digestibility and flow of DM and N through the digestive tract were also unaffected (P > 0.10) by parasite infection. Despite a trend towards higher abomasal AA flux in the parasitised lambs (P < 0.10), apparent AA absorption from the small intestine and AA availability to other tissues were unaffected (P > 0.10) by infection. These results suggest that an established parasite infection had little effect on the intestinal absorption and availability of AA to other tissues in lambs fed fresh Lucerne.
Despite the importance of the prior-β grain structure in determining the properties of titanium-based alloys, there are few published studies on methods of controlling the size of these grains in commercial alloys. The existing research raises questions about the relative importance of solute elements in grain-refining mechanisms, particularly the common alloying elements of aluminum and vanadium. The effect of these elements was investigated by producing a series of castings in a nonconsumable arc-melting furnace, and the results were interpreted with the aid of available phase-diagram information and solute-based models of grain refinement. A small reduction in grain size was obtained with increasing solute additions; however, this was not expected from the theoretical analysis. Possible reasons for this discrepancy are discussed.
Increased partitioning of amino acids (AA) from skeletal muscle to the intestine and immune system during parasitic infection may be the cause of poor growth in parasitised animals. The effect of an established Trichostrongylus colubriformis infection (6000 L3 T. colubriformis larvae for 6 d (n 5) or kept as parasite-free controls (n 6)) on AA fluxes across the mesenteric-drained viscera, portal-drained viscera (PDV), liver, total splanchnic tissues (TSP) and hindquarters were determined in lambs fed fresh Sulla (Hedysarum coronarium; 800 g DM/d) 48 d post-infection. The lambs were infused with ρ-aminohippuric acid (PAH; 723 mg/h) into the mesenteric vein for 8 h to measure TSP plasma flow. Concurrently, indocyanine green (ICG; 14·6 mg/h) was infused into the abdominal aorta to measure plasma flow across the hindquarters. Blood was continuously collected from the mesenteric, portal and hepatic veins, vena cava and the mesenteric artery and plasma harvested. PAH, ICG, AA, metabolite and insulin concentrations were measured. Intestinal worm burdens on day 48 post-infection were higher in the infected lambs (P < 0·05). Plasma flows across the tissue beds were unaffected by parasitic infection (P>0·10). There was a 28 % reduction in the release of AA from the PDV of infected lambs (P < 0·05). The uptakes of most AA were similar in the liver; however, there was increased uptake (P < 0·10) of AA by the TSP of infected lambs. Despite this reduction in AA availability at the liver, there was no effect of parasitic infection on AA uptake across the hindquarters (P < 0·05).
Poor growth during parasitic infection may be due to a redistribution of amino acids away from skeletal muscle protein synthesis to the intestinal site of infection. The effect of a Trichostrongylus colubriformis infection on whole-body amino acid kinetics and tissue fractional protein synthesis rates were determined in lambs fed fresh Sulla (Hedysarum coronarium; 800g DM/d). Lambs were dosed with 6000 L3 Trichostrongylus colubriformis larvae daily for 6d (n 6) or kept as parasite-free controls (n 6). On day 45 post-infection, the lambs received an intravenous injection of 2H2O and infusions (8h) of [35S]sulphate to measure the size of the whole-body water and sulphate pools, respectively. On day 48, the lambs were continuously infused for 8h with [3,4-3H]valine into the jugular vein as well as with [1-13C]valine and [35S]cysteine into the abomasum. After the 8h infusions, the lambs were killed and tissue samples collected from the duodenum, ileum, mesenteric lymph nodes, liver, spleen, thymus, muscle and skin. Feed intake (769 v. 689 (sd 47) g DM/d) was not affected by infection, whereas liveweight gains (50 v. −50 (sd 70) g/d) were lower and intestinal worm burdens(240 v. 18 000 (sd 7000) worms) higher in the infected lambs. Parasitic infection increased the fractional protein synthesis rates in the small intestine, mesenteric lymph nodes and liver but did not affect skin and skeletal muscle fractional protein synthesis rates during the established parasitic infection.