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Smoking is purported to increase the risk of peritonsillar abscess formation, but prospective data are needed to confirm this hypothesis. This prospective study aimed to identify this correlation.
Fifty-four patients with peritonsillar abscess were prospectively asked about their smoking behaviour using a questionnaire that was designed and approved by the Robert Koch Institute (Berlin, Germany) to analyse smoking behaviour in epidemiological studies. Afterwards, a consecutive control group (without peritonsillar abscess), matched in terms of age and gender, was surveyed using the same questionnaire. A classification of smoker, former smoker and non-smoker was made, and the numbers of pack-years were calculated and compared.
Statistical analysis of both groups revealed a significant correlation between peritonsillar abscess and smoking experience (p = 0.025). Moreover, there were significantly fewer non-smokers in the non-peritonsillar abscess group (p = 0.04). The number of pack-years was higher in the peritonsillar abscess group (p = 0.037).
There is a statistically significant association between peritonsillar abscess and smoking.
Risk populations for HIV infections tend to neglect condom use, making alternative preventive approaches necessary. Accordingly, we modelled the risk of sexual HIV transmission for condom use vs. use of rapid diagnostic test (RDT) systems with subsequent exclusion of potential sexual partners with a correctly or falsely positive test from unprotected sex with and without the use of HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) in a bio-statistical approach. We combined a previously described model of transmission risk for HIV-exposed individuals with a newly suggested model of risk of HIV exposure for sexually active HIV-negative individuals. The model was adapted for several stages of infection and different strategies of HIV infection prevention.
HIV prevention with RDTs can reduce the transmission risk by up to 97% compared with having sex without any prevention and up to 80% compared with condom use. Nevertheless, RDT-based prevention strategies demonstrate a lack of protection in several stages of infection; in particular, RNA-based RDT systems may fail under treatment. RDT-based pre-screening of potential sex partners prior to unprotected sexual contacts substantially reduces HIV transmission risk. Combination of different prevention strategies is advisable for high-risk groups.
The present study investigated the effect of hydrothermic maize processing and supplementation of amino acids (AA) in two experiments. In total, 60 barrows and 384 broilers were fed four diets including either unprocessed (T1), or hydrothermically processed maize, that is short- (T2), or long-term conditioned (LC) (T3), and subsequently expanded maize of the same batch. Assuming a higher metabolizable energy (ME) content after processing, the fourth diet (T4) contains maize processed as treatment T3, but AA were supplemented to maintain the ideal protein value. Performance, digestibility and product quality in both species were assessed. Results show that in pigs receiving T4 the average daily feed intake was lower compared with the other treatments, whereas no difference was observed in broilers. The T3 improved the feed conversion rate compared with T1 (P<0.10) for both species. In contrast, average daily gain (ADG) (1277 g/day for T2 and 1267 g/day for T3 v. 971 g/day for T1) was only altered in pigs. The hydrothermic maize processing increased the apparent total tract digestibility (ATTD) of dry matter, starch and ether extract after acid hydrolysis. This may be a consequence of higher ATTD of gross energy in the finishing phase for both animal species, suggesting a higher ME content in diets with processed maize. The higher ME content of diets with processed maize is supported also by measurements of product quality. Supplementation of AA in T4 enhanced the loin depth in pigs as well as the amount of breast meat in broilers. Further effects of processing maize on meat quality were the reduced yellowness and antioxidative capacity (P<0.10) for broilers, likely due to the heat damage of xanthophylls and tocopherols. Processing also increased springiness and chewiness (P<0.10) of the broilers breast meat, whereas the loin meat of pigs showed a decreased lightness and yellowness (P<0.10) in meat when hydrothermic processed maize was used (for T2, T3 and T4). LC processed maize (T3) showed the lowest springiness in pork, however the supplementation of AA in T4 did not show differences between the treatments. Shown results demonstrated positive effects of hydrothermic processing of maize on animal performance and digestibility in both species. However, effects on carcass characteristics and product quality differed. The negative effects on product quality could be partly compensated with the AA supplementation, whereas a change in meat colour and reduced antioxidative capacity was observed in all groups fed hydrothermic maize processing.
The increasing demand for energy storage devices has propelled research for developing efficient super-capacitors (SC) with long cycle life and ultrahigh energy density. Carbon-based materials are commonly used as electrode materials for SC. Herein, we report a new approach to improve the SC performance utilizing a Porous Carbon/Cerium Oxide nanoparticle (PC-CON) hybrid as electrode material synthesized via a low temperature hydrothermal method. Through this approach, charges can be stored not only via electrochemical double layer capacitance (EDLC) from PC but also through pseudo-capacitive effect from CeO2 nanoparticles (NPs). The electrode-electrolyte interaction due to the electrochemical properties of the electrolyte provides an enhanced voltage window for the SC. Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM), X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS), and X-Ray Diffraction (XRD) measurements were used for the characterization of this PC/CeO2 hybrid material system. The testing results have shown that a maximum of 500% higher specific capacitance could be obtained using PC/CeO2 instead of using PC only.
Measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) and varicella zoster virus (VZV) infection can cause serious diseases and complications in the HIV-positive population. Due to successful vaccination programmes measles, mumps and congenital rubella syndrome has become neglected in Germany. However, recent outbreaks of measles have occurred from import-associated cases. In this cross-sectional study the serostatus for MMR and VZV in 2013 HIV-positive adults from three different university outpatient clinics in Bonn (n = 544), Cologne (n = 995) and Munich (n = 474) was analysed. Sera were tested for MMR- and VZV-specific immunglobulin G antibodies using commercial immunoassays. Seronegativity was found in 3% for measles, 26% for mumps, 11% for rubella and 2% for VZV. Regarding MMR, 35% of patients lacked seropositivity against at least one infectious agent. In multivariable analysis younger age was strongly associated with seronegativity against all four viruses, measles, mumps, rubella (P < 0·001, P < 0·001 and P = 0·001, respectively) and VZV (P = 0·001). In conclusion, there is high need for MMR and VZV vaccination in people living with HIV in Germany born in 1970 or later. Thus, systematic MMR and VZV antibody screening and vaccination should be implemented in the HIV-positive population to prevent serious disease and complications of vaccine-preventable diseases.
Data are scarce regarding combined high Se and Mn supplementation in livestock diets, however, as Se and Mn are functionally related as cofactors of glutathione peroxidase (GPx) and Mn-superoxide dismutase (SOD), respectively, beneficial synergistic effects on oxidative stability of tissues may result. This experiment evaluated the effect of an oversupply of Se and Mn within European legal limits compared with recommendations on performance, oxidative stability of the organism and meat quality in a randomised complete block design. A total of 60 crossbred gilts were fed maize–barley–soya bean meal diets formulated in a 2×2 factorial approach with inorganic Se (0.2 v. 0.5 mg/kg Se dry matter (DM)) or inorganic Mn (20 v. 150 mg/kg Mn DM) from 31 to 116 kg BW. Se supplementation reduced feed intake, whereas high Mn diets impaired average daily gain (P<0.05). Qualitative carcass characteristics were impaired by Se and Mn predominantly in the semimembranosus muscle. Activity of GPx in liver was increased by high Se diets (P<0.05). Mn supplementation increased catalase (CAT) activity in liver, GPx in plasma and total antioxidative capacity (TAC) in muscle, whereas it decreased CAT activity in plasma (P<0.05). Cu/Zn-SOD in muscle showed higher activity in high-Se-low-Mn diets but lower activity when both high Se and Mn were combined (Se×Mn P<0.05). Mn supplementation increased Mn concentration in longissimus thoracis et lumborum, but simultaneously reduced Se concentration (P<0.05). Upon retail display, Mn increased lipid oxidation more pronouncedly (higher thiobarbituric acid reactive substances; P<0.05) than Se (P<0.10). Despite some positive effects (Mn increased TAC, Se increased GPx, Se and Mn increased tenderness), no synergistic effects of high Se and Mn diets or an overall beneficial impact on meat quality, especially during storage, could be observed. Including the negative effects on performance, feeding Se and Mn up to the maximum legal level cannot be recommended.
The classical model of the interstellar medium consists of cool clouds (typical temperature 80 K, number density 20-40 cm-3) moving through a warmer interstellar medium (104 K, 0.15-0.3 cm-3) at a rms velocity of ~ 10 km s-1. More recent models have included the coronal gas (106 K) as part of this medium. We consider the collisions of these clouds in order to determine whether these collisions initiate star formation and/or change the state of the interstellar medium.
High-protein diets are known to reduce adiposity in the context of high carbohydrate and Western diets. However, few studies have investigated the specific high-protein effect on lipogenesis induced by a high-sucrose (HS) diet or fat deposition induced by high-fat feeding. We aimed to determine the effects of high protein intake on the development of fat deposition and partitioning in response to high-fat and/or HS feeding. A total of thirty adult male Wistar rats were assigned to one of the six dietary regimens with low and high protein, sucrose and fat contents for 5 weeks. Body weight (BW) and food intake were measured weekly. Oral glucose tolerance tests and meal tolerance tests were performed after 4th and 5th weeks of the regimen, respectively. At the end of the study, the rats were killed 2 h after ingestion of a calibrated meal. Blood, tissues and organs were collected for analysis of circulating metabolites and hormones, body composition and mRNA expression in the liver and adipose tissues. No changes were observed in cumulative energy intake and BW gain after 5 weeks of dietary treatment. However, high-protein diets reduced by 20 % the adiposity gain induced by HS and high-sucrose high-fat (HS-HF) diets. Gene expression and transcriptomic analysis suggested that high protein intake reduced liver capacity for lipogenesis by reducing mRNA expressions of fatty acid synthase (fasn), acetyl-CoA carboxylase a and b (Acaca and Acacb) and sterol regulatory element binding transcription factor 1c (Srebf-1c). Moreover, ketogenesis, as indicated by plasma β-hydroxybutyrate levels, was higher in HS-HF-fed mice that were also fed high protein levels. Taken together, these results suggest that high-protein diets may reduce adiposity by inhibiting lipogenesis and stimulating ketogenesis in the liver.
Among the microstructure defects in hexagonal graphitic boron nitride, the basal plane corrugations are of high relevance for the sp2 to sp3 phase transition under high pressures (HP) and high temperatures (HT). A microstructure model is described, which is capable of quantifying the amplitude of the basal plane corrugations on the basis of the anisotropic X-ray diffraction line broadening. It is illustrated that this model correctly reproduces the specific shape of the diffraction lines from corrugated basal planes, i.e., the characteristic splitting of the 00l peaks. The results from XRD are verified by direct observation in the transmission electron microscope with high resolution. Subsequent HP/HT experiments were performed in order to highlight the difference in the phase transition kinetics between hexagonal boron nitride samples with different amount of basal plane corrugations. The effect of these microstructure defects on the conversion rate and on the obtained synthesis product is discussed.
A layered composite coating material with favorable properties for application as a transparent conductor is presented. It is composed of layers of three nanoscopic materials, namely zinc oxide nanoparticles, single wall nanotubes, and graphene oxide nanosheets. The electrically conducting layer consists of single wall nanotubes (SWNTs). The layer of zinc oxide nanoparticles acts as a primer. It increases the adhesion and the stability of the films against mechanical stresses. The top layer of graphene oxide enhances the conductivity of such coatings. Such three-layer composite coatings show better conductivity (without compromising transparency) and improved mechanical stability compared to pure SWNT films. The processes used in the preparation of such coatings are easily scalable.
Fifty years have elapsed since the passage of the Community Mental Health Centers (CMHC) Act in 1963 that reflected the legislative peak of the community mental healthcare movement in the US Progress of the last 10 years is represented both by expansions of evidence-based practices (EBPs) and the development of emerging practices and fundamental shifts in the orientation of the system stimulated by the consumer-driven recovery movement. Established EBPs have accumulated expanded evidence, new EBPs have been developed and emerging EBPs are gaining increased acceptance. While the lack of widespread implementation of EBPs as well as the limitations of these technologies produces unnecessary suffering and disability, we believe that the growth of evidence for treatments and services justifies optimism for the future.
Patients with borderline personality disorder (BPD) show a high prevalence of early adversity, such as childhood trauma. It has also been reported that prenatal adverse conditions, such as prenatal maternal stress, drug taking, tobacco smoking or medical complications, may be associated with an increased risk of mental disorders in the offspring. Prenatal adversity is investigated here for the first time as a potential risk factor in the diagnosis of BPD.
A total of 100 patients with a DSM-IV diagnosis of BPD and 100 matched healthy controls underwent semi-structured interviews about the course of pregnancy, maternal stressors, birth complications and childhood trauma. Further information was obtained from the participants' mothers and from prenatal medical records.
Borderline patients were significantly more often exposed to adverse intrauterine conditions, such as prenatal tobacco exposure (p=0.004), medical complications (p=0.008), prenatal maternal traumatic stress (p=0.015), familial conflicts (p=0.004), low social support (p=0.004) and partnership problems during pregnancy (p=0.014). Logistic regression analyses revealed that the reported prenatal risk factors accounted for 25.7% of the variance in BPD. Prenatal tobacco exposure [odds ratio (OR) 3.37, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.49–7.65, p=0.004] and medical complications (OR 2.87, 95% CI 1.29–6.38, p=0.010) emerged as important predictors. After controlling for childhood adversity and parental socio-economic status (SES), prenatal risk factors predicted relevant borderline subdomains, such as impulsivity, affective instability, identity disturbance, dissociation and severity of borderline symptoms.
This study provides evidence of an association between prenatal adversity and the diagnosis of BPD. Our findings suggest that prenatal adversity may constitute a potential risk factor in the pathogenesis of BPD.
We report on a measles outbreak originating in an anthroposophic community in Austria, 2008. A total of 394 (94·9%) cases fulfilled the outbreak case definition including 168 cases affiliated to the anthroposophic community. The source case was a school pupil from Switzerland. The Austrian outbreak strain was genotype D5, indistinguishable from the Swiss outbreak strain. A school-based retrospective cohort study in the anthroposophic school demonstrated a vaccine effectiveness of 97·3% in pupils who had received a single dose of measles-containing vaccine and 100% in those who had received two doses. The vaccination coverage of the cases in the anthroposophic community was 0·6%. Of the 226 outbreak cases not belonging to the anthroposophic community, the 10–24 years age group was the most affected. Our findings underline the epidemiological significance of suboptimal vaccination coverage in anthroposophic communities and in older age groups of the general population in facilitating measles virus circulation. The findings of this outbreak investigation suggest that the WHO European Region is unlikely to achieve its 2010 target for measles and rubella elimination.
Of eight acute infections in German tourists caused by sandfly fever virus, serotype Toscana (TOS). and diagnosed clinically and serologically, seven were acquired during visits to Tuscany, Italy, and one to Coimbra, Portugal. An indirect immunofluorescence assay (IFA) using infected cells, and a newly developed enzyme-immunoassay (EIA) using crude virus antigen prepared from infected Vero-E6 cells was used to detect anti-TOS IgM and IgG. In a seroepidemiological survey of 859 health care workers and medical students, anti-TOS IgG was detected in 1·0% by IFA, and in 0·7% by EIA. In 2034 German patients hospitalized for various diseases, 1·6% were positive for anti-TOS IgG by IFA, and 0·8% by EIA. Anti-TOS IgG was detected in 43 samples of commercial immunoglobulins at titres of 10–1000 by EIA. Although the seroprevalence of antibodies to TOS is low in Germany, TOS infection should be considered in patients returning from endemic areas who complain of fever, and headaches, and have symptoms of meningitis.
With the advent of intense, coherent light sources in the XUV and soft X-ray regime, X-ray Thomson scattering becomes a unique tool for the diagnostics of dense plasmas. The scattering spectrum gives direct access to plasma properties like density, temperature, and composition. In dense systems, collisions among constituents are of primary importance for the prediction and interpretation of the scattering signal. We present a systematic approach to the dynamical structure factor using the Born-Mermin ansatz to include collisions via the dynamical collision frequency. Calculations of the scattering spectrum are performed for X-ray scattering on solid and compressed beryllium targets as well as for XUV-photons scattering on hydrogen at near solid density.
AlGaN/GaN pH sensitive devices were functionalized and passivated for the use as selective bio-sensors. For the passivation, a multilayer of SiO2 and SiNx is proposed, which stabilizes the pH-sensor, is biocompatible and has no negative impact on the following bio-functionalization. The functionalization of the GaN-surface was achieved by covalent bonding of 10-amino-dec-1-ene molecules by a photochemical process. After two different surface preparations islands of TFAAD are growing on the sensor surface by exposure with UV-light. In dependence on the surface pre-treatment and the illumination wavelength the first monolayer is completed after 3 h or 7 h exposure time dependent on the pre-treatment and illumination wavelength. Further exposure results in thicker films as a consequence of cross polymerization. The bonding to the sensor surface was analyzed by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, while the thickness of the functionalization was determined by atomic force microscopy scratching experiments. These functionalized devices based on the pH-sensitive AlGaN/GaN ISFET will establish a new family of adaptive, selective biomolecular sensors such as selective, reusable DNA sensors.
Deposition steps in CVD and ALD applications usually not only cover the surface of the substrate surface but also the walls of the chamber inside. Regular removal of those residuals has to be done to obtain stable and repeatable deposition results with uniform surfaces at acceptable particle levels. The high requirements to sustain stable processes has lead to more frequent chamber cleans. NF3 has emerged as the main clean gas for remote clean applications. While it meets the above mentioned requirements and is considered to fit easily into the fab gas supply it is relatively expensive. The work presented here investigates argon/nitrogen diluted fluorine (F2) as an alternative clean gas with a significantly reduced environmentally destructive global warming emission (GWP). The cleaning behaviour with respect to different materials (SiON, TaN, TiN, W, SiO2) was studied. It is found that in general argon/nitrogen diluted fluorine achieves etch rates comparable to those obtained by NF3 when the comparison is based on the amount of fluorine transported into the reactor.