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Most of the photochemical activity of bacterial photosynthetic apparatuses occurs in the reaction center, a transmembrane protein complex which converts photons into charge-separated states across the membrane with a quantum yield close to unity, fuelling the metabolism of the organism. Integrating the reaction center from the bacterium Rhodobacter sphaeroides onto electroactive surfaces, it is possible to technologically exploit the efficiency of this natural machinery to generate a photovoltage upon Near Infra-Red illumination, which can be used in electronic architectures working in the electrolytic environment such as electrolyte-gated organic transistors and bio-photonic power cells. Here, photovoltage generation in reaction center-based bio-hybrid architectures is investigated by means of chronopotentiometry, isolating the contribution of the functionalisation layers and defining novel surface functionalization strategies for photovoltage tuning.
During pregnancy, mothers-to-be should adapt their diet to meet increases in nutrient requirements. Pregnant women appear to be keener to adopt healthier diets, but are not always successful. The objective of the present study was to determine whether a guided, stepwise and tailored dietary counselling programme, designed using an optimisation algorithm, could improve the nutrient adequacy of the diet of pregnant women, beyond generic guidelines. Pregnant women (n 80) who attended Notre-Dame-de-Bon-Secours Maternity Clinic were randomly allocated to the control or intervention arm. Dietary data were obtained twice from an online 3-d dietary record. The nutrient adequacy of the diet was calculated using the PANDiet score, a 100-point diet quality index adapted to the specific nutrient requirements for pregnancy. Women were supplied with generic dietary guidelines in a reference booklet. In the intervention arm, they also received nine sets of tailored dietary advice identified by an optimisation algorithm as best improving their PANDiet score. Pregnant women (n 78) completed the 12-week dietary follow-up. Initial PANDiet scores were similar in the control and intervention arms (60·4 (sd 7·3) v. 60·3 (sd 7·3), P = 0·92). The PANDiet score increased in the intervention arm (+3·6 (sd 9·3), P = 0·02) but not in the control arm (−0·3 (sd 7·3), P = 0·77), and these changes differed between arms (P = 0·04). In the intervention arm, there were improvements in the probabilities of adequacy for α-linolenic acid, thiamin, folate and cholesterol intakes (P < 0·05). Tailored dietary counselling using a computer-based algorithm is more effective than generic dietary counselling alone in improving the nutrient adequacy of the diet of French women in mid-pregnancy.
Premorbid dysfunction during childhood and adolescence is well documented in patients with schizophrenia. Literature pointed out multiple premorbid trajectories leading to different patients’ cognitive status, symptomatology, and global functioning after disease onset. This study aimed at identifying groups of premorbid trajectories and disentangling between group differences in clinical and cognitive measures, focusing on theory of mind (ToM) and autistic traits (ATs).
Ninety-seven patients with schizophrenia were recruited and assessed for cognitive and ToM abilities, psychopathology, and ATs. A two-step cluster analysis identified three different groups of patients based on premorbid adjustment during childhood, adolescence, and late adolescence (i.e., stable-good, stable-poor, and “deteriorating”).
Compared to 66 healthy controls, results showed a widespread impairment in cognitive and ToM abilities among all groups of patients, except for affective ToM and executive functions in the stable-good group. Moreover, the stable-poor group exhibited more pronounced ATs and a more severe ToM impairment, compared to the other two groups of patients.
Our findings highlight the existence of a group of patients with poor premorbid adjustment since childhood, more pronounced ATs and a severe ToM impairment affecting those basic mentalizing skills that are usually preserved in schizophrenia. Results might have intriguing implications in identifying underpinning endophenotypes and implementing cutting-edge rehabilitation programs.
The causes of the beaching and death of sea turtles have not been fully clarified and continue to be studied. Mild, moderate and severe lesions caused by spirorchiidiosis have been seen for decades in different organs and were recently defined as the cause of death of a loggerhead turtle. In the present study, eyes and optic nerves were analysed in green sea turtles with spirorchiidiosis and no other debilitating factors. Injuries to the optic nerve and choroid layer were described in 235 animals (90%) infected with spirorchiids. Turtles with ocular spirorchiidiosis are approximately three times more likely to be cachectic than turtles with spirorchiidiosis without ocular involvement.
Emotions play an important role in cognition and have a significant and all too often neglected influence on (international) law-making processes. Fear, in particular, can be a driver of reasoning and decision-making. Fear of terrorism / immigrants / health threats / food contamination / environmental hazards – to give a few notable examples – influences the perception of risks associated with these issues and consequently impacts international policy- and law-making. International law rules and doctrines are often adopted – if not overtly justified – on the basis of fear and other emotions. This article aims to explore how fear – as both an individual and collective emotion – may affect decision-making processes, be determinative of normative outcomes, and shape security policies at the domestic and international levels. This approach deviates from traditional rationalist understandings of law and emphasizes the role of emotions in apprehending the nature and functioning of legal processes. Hopefully, this exploration will open up interesting avenues for further research on the role of emotions in international legal processes.
In 2017, Italy experienced a large measles epidemic with 5408 cases and four deaths. As Subnational Reference Laboratory of the Measles and Rubella surveillance NETwork (MoRoNET), the EpiSoMI (Epidemiology and Molecular Surveillance of Infections) Laboratory (University of Milan) set up rapid and active surveillance for the complete characterisation of the Measles virus (Mv) responsible for the large measles outbreak in Milan and surrounding areas (Lombardy, Northern Italy). The aims of this study were to describe the genetic profile of circulating viruses and to track the pathway of measles transmission. Molecular analysis was performed by sequencing the highly variable 450 nucleotides region of the N gene (N-450) of Mv genome. Two-hundred and ninety-nine strains of Mv were analysed. The phylogenetic analysis showed five different variants, two not previously described in the studied area, belonging to D8 and B3 genotypes. Three events of continuous transmission of autochthonous variants (D8-Osaka, D8-London and B3-Milan variants) and two events of continuous transmission of imported variants (B3-Dublin and D8-Hulu Langat) tracked five different transmission pathways. These pathways outlined two epidemic peaks: the first in April and the second in July 2017. The correlation between Mv variant and the epidemiological data may enable us to identify the sources of virus importation and recognise long-lasting virus transmission pathways.
With the recent discovery of a dozen dusty star-forming galaxies and around 30 quasars at z > 5 that are hyper-luminous in the infrared (μ LIR > 1013 L⊙, where μ is a lensing magnification factor), the possibility has opened up for SPICA, the proposed ESA M5 mid-/far-infrared mission, to extend its spectroscopic studies toward the epoch of reionisation and beyond. In this paper, we examine the feasibility and scientific potential of such observations with SPICA’s far-infrared spectrometer SAFARI, which will probe a spectral range (35–230 μm) that will be unexplored by ALMA and JWST. Our simulations show that SAFARI is capable of delivering good-quality spectra for hyper-luminous infrared galaxies at z = 5 − 10, allowing us to sample spectral features in the rest-frame mid-infrared and to investigate a host of key scientific issues, such as the relative importance of star formation versus AGN, the hardness of the radiation field, the level of chemical enrichment, and the properties of the molecular gas. From a broader perspective, SAFARI offers the potential to open up a new frontier in the study of the early Universe, providing access to uniquely powerful spectral features for probing first-generation objects, such as the key cooling lines of low-metallicity or metal-free forming galaxies (fine-structure and H2 lines) and emission features of solid compounds freshly synthesised by Population III supernovae. Ultimately, SAFARI’s ability to explore the high-redshift Universe will be determined by the availability of sufficiently bright targets (whether intrinsically luminous or gravitationally lensed). With its launch expected around 2030, SPICA is ideally positioned to take full advantage of upcoming wide-field surveys such as LSST, SKA, Euclid, and WFIRST, which are likely to provide extraordinary targets for SAFARI.
Inclusion of legume in grass pastures optimizes protein values of the forage and promotes improved digestibility. Therefore, we hypothesized that finishing steers on a novel combination of legumes and grass pasture would produce carcasses with acceptable traits when compared to carcasses from steers finished in feedlot systems. In this study, we evaluated the effects of finishing steers on three systems including: grazing legume–grass pasture containing oats, ryegrass, white and red clover (PAST), grazing PAST plus supplementation with whole corn grain (14 g/kg BW (SUPP)), and on a feedlot-confined system with concentrate only (28 g/kg BW, consisting of 850 g/kg of whole corn grain and 150 g/kg of protein–mineral–vitamin supplement (GRAIN)) on growth performance of steers, carcass traits and digestive disorders. Eighteen steers were randomly assigned to one of three dietary treatments and finished for 91 days. Data regarding pasture and growth performance were collected during three different periods (0 to 28, 29 to 56 and 57 to 91 days). Subsequently, steers were harvested to evaluate carcass traits, presence of rumenitis, abomasitis and liver abscesses. The legume–grass pasture provided more than 19% dry matter of protein. In addition, pasture of paddocks where steers were assigned to SUPP and PAST treatments showed similar nutritional quality. When compared to PAST, finishing on SUPP increased total weight gain per hectare, stocking rate, daily and total weight gains. The increase of weight gain was high to GRAIN than SUPP and PAST. Steers finished on GRAIN had high hot carcass weight, fat thickness and marbling score when compared to PAST. However, these attributes did not differ between GRAIN and SUPP. Abomasum lesions were more prevalent in steers finished on GRAIN when compared to PAST. Results of this research showed that it is possible to produce carcasses with desirable market weight and fat thickness by finishing steers on legume–grass pasture containing oats, ryegrass, white and red clover. Moreover, supplementing steers with corn when grazing on legume–grass pasture produced similar carcass traits when compared to beef fed corn only.
The literature identifies multiple factors that can affect the adoption of new technologies and practices in agriculture to support farm innovation, such as farmers’ socio-economic characteristics and the characteristics of the promoted technology, among others. It has, however, scarcely contemplated the role of the farm workforce in technology and practice adoption. The objective of this study is (i) to describe innovative behaviour and its relation with farmers’ ability to collaborate with the workforce in the adoption process; and (ii) to associate this description with the level of adoption of certain technologies and practices. Structural equation modelling (bifactor model) was used to identify the components of innovative behaviour, and correlation analysis was used to determine the relationship between these components and adoption level. The results show that relevant components of innovative behaviour are farmers’ ability to generate and implement new ideas, to extend their networks and to involve the workforce in the adoption process. Worker involvement proved to be a key factor within the definition of farmers’ innovative behaviour, which additionally shows a positive and significant correlation with the level of adoption of technologies and practices. A main theoretical implication is that research on technology and practice adoption needs to move beyond looking at single owner-managers of (family) farms and incorporate workers into the unit of analysis. The practical and policy implications are that innovation support programmes should give more attention to workforce management, training and skills of owner-managers as transformative and inclusive leaders, as these are essential for technology and practice adoption, and more broadly for innovation capacity.
This article focuses on the role of protest music in the biggest social movement of recent Turkish history. It is the result of three years of fieldwork triangulating musical and cultural analysis with ethnographic methods. Motives of the protest, strategies of the movement, agency of musicians and participatory performances are investigated and contextualised in an analysis of Turkey's cultural changes. The function of music shifted from framing the protest to encouraging political action and fostering a sense of belonging to the collective identity of the Gezi Park movement. Music even became political activism. By underlining different functions played by music in the case of the Gezi Park movement, this article problematises the relevance of music for social movements.
Objectives: Cognitive reserve (CR), defined as individual differences in the ability to cope with brain damage, seem to be associated to the several psychopathological features in psychiatric patients, such as the functional outcome. This study aims to identify different profiles of CR by combining intelligence quotient (IQ) and premorbid functioning, two measures independently associated to CR in previous works, as well as to explore CR effect on both Theory of Mind (ToM) baseline performance and improvement after socio-cognitive trainings. Methods: Sixty patients with chronic schizophrenia underwent a socio-cognitive rehabilitation. All patients were assessed for psychopathology, neurocognition, and ToM at baseline and post-treatment. CR profiles were explored with K-means cluster analysis, while differences between clusters in both baseline assessments and post-treatment ToM improvement, were analyzed by means of analysis of variance and repeated measures analysis of covariance. Results: The analysis revealed three CR profiles, respectively, characterized by low early premorbid functioning and mild intellectual impairment, average/high early premorbid functioning trend with moderate intellectual impairment and good early premorbid functioning associated to IQ within normal limits. Analyses showed a significant effect of CR on both baseline ToM performance and treatment outcome: patients with higher CR reached significantly better ToM scores. Conclusions: These results underline the clinical relevance of defining CR profiles of patients to customize trainings: subjects with a lower CR may benefit from more intensive programs. A deeper knowledge about CR may considerably increase our understanding of individual differences and thus potentiate treatment outcome. (JINS, 2018, 24, 563–571)
To analyze the impact of the International Nosocomial Infection Control Consortium (INICC) Multidimensional Approach (IMA) and the INICC Surveillance Online System (ISOS) on central line-associated bloodstream infection (CLABSI) rates in 14 intensive care units (ICUs) in Argentina from January 2014 to April 2017.
This prospective, pre–post surveillance study of 3,940 ICU patients was conducted in 11 hospitals in 5 cities in Argentina. During our baseline evaluation, we performed outcome and process surveillance of CLABSI applying Centers for Disease Control and Prevention/National Health Safety Network (CDC/NHSN) definitions. During the intervention, we implemented the IMA through ISOS: (1) a bundle of infection prevention practice interventions, (2) education, (3) outcome surveillance, (4) process surveillance, (5) feedback on CLABSI rates and consequences, and (6) performance feedback of process surveillance. Bivariate and multivariate regression analyses were performed using a logistic regression model to estimate the effect of the intervention on the CLABSI rate.
During the baseline period, 5,118 CL days and 49 CLABSIs were recorded, for a rate of 9.6 CLABSIs per 1,000 central-line (CL) days. During the intervention, 15,659 CL days and 68 CLABSIs were recorded, for a rate of 4.1 CLABSIs per 1,000 CL days. The CLABSI rate was reduced by 57% (incidence density rate: 0.43; 95% confidence interval, 0.34–0.6; P<.001).
Implementing IMA through ISOS was associated with a significant reduction in the CLABSI rate in ICUs in Argentina.
IR spectroscopy in the range 12–230 μm with the SPace IR telescope for Cosmology and Astrophysics (SPICA) will reveal the physical processes governing the formation and evolution of galaxies and black holes through cosmic time, bridging the gap between the James Webb Space Telescope and the upcoming Extremely Large Telescopes at shorter wavelengths and the Atacama Large Millimeter Array at longer wavelengths. The SPICA, with its 2.5-m telescope actively cooled to below 8 K, will obtain the first spectroscopic determination, in the mid-IR rest-frame, of both the star-formation rate and black hole accretion rate histories of galaxies, reaching lookback times of 12 Gyr, for large statistically significant samples. Densities, temperatures, radiation fields, and gas-phase metallicities will be measured in dust-obscured galaxies and active galactic nuclei, sampling a large range in mass and luminosity, from faint local dwarf galaxies to luminous quasars in the distant Universe. Active galactic nuclei and starburst feedback and feeding mechanisms in distant galaxies will be uncovered through detailed measurements of molecular and atomic line profiles. The SPICA’s large-area deep spectrophotometric surveys will provide mid-IR spectra and continuum fluxes for unbiased samples of tens of thousands of galaxies, out to redshifts of z ~ 6.