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Experimental studies have reported on the anti-inflammatory properties of polyphenols. However, results from epidemiological investigations have been inconsistent and especially studies using biomarkers for assessment of polyphenol intake have been scant. We aimed to characterise the association between plasma concentrations of thirty-five polyphenol compounds and low-grade systemic inflammation state as measured by high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP). A cross-sectional data analysis was performed based on 315 participants in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition cohort with available measurements of plasma polyphenols and hsCRP. In logistic regression analysis, the OR and 95 % CI of elevated serum hsCRP (>3 mg/l) were calculated within quartiles and per standard deviation higher level of plasma polyphenol concentrations. In a multivariable-adjusted model, the sum of plasma concentrations of all polyphenols measured (per standard deviation) was associated with 29 (95 % CI 50, 1) % lower odds of elevated hsCRP. In the class of flavonoids, daidzein was inversely associated with elevated hsCRP (OR 0·66, 95 % CI 0·46, 0·96). Among phenolic acids, statistically significant associations were observed for 3,5-dihydroxyphenylpropionic acid (OR 0·58, 95 % CI 0·39, 0·86), 3,4-dihydroxyphenylpropionic acid (OR 0·63, 95 % CI 0·46, 0·87), ferulic acid (OR 0·65, 95 % CI 0·44, 0·96) and caffeic acid (OR 0·69, 95 % CI 0·51, 0·93). The odds of elevated hsCRP were significantly reduced for hydroxytyrosol (OR 0·67, 95 % CI 0·48, 0·93). The present study showed that polyphenol biomarkers are associated with lower odds of elevated hsCRP. Whether diet rich in bioactive polyphenol compounds could be an effective strategy to prevent or modulate deleterious health effects of inflammation should be addressed by further well-powered longitudinal studies.
In this paper, we will report about the implementation of the self-consistent Kröner–Eshelby model for the calculation of X-ray elastic constants for general, triclinic crystal symmetry. With applying appropriate symmetry relations, the point groups of higher crystal symmetries are covered as well. This simplifies the implementation effort to cover the calculations for any crystal symmetry. In the literature, several models can be found to estimate the polycrystalline elastic properties from single crystal elastic constants. In general, this is an intermediate step toward the calculation of the polycrystalline response to different techniques using X-rays, neutrons, or ultrasonic waves. In the case of X-ray residual stress analysis, the final goal is the calculation of X-ray Elastic constants. Contrary to the models of Reuss, Voigt, and Hill, the Kröner–Eshelby model has the benefit that, because of the implementation of the Eshelby inclusion model, it can be expanded to cover more complicated systems that exhibit multiple phases, inclusions or pores and that these can be optionally combined with a polycrystalline matrix that is anisotropic, i.e., contains texture. We will discuss a recent theoretical development where the approaches of calculating bounds of Reuss and Voigt, the tighter bounds of Hashin–Shtrikman and Dederichs–Zeller are brought together in one unifying model that converges to the self-consistent solution of Kröner–Eshelby. For the implementation of the Kröner–Eshelby model the well-known Voigt notation is adopted. The 4-rank tensor operations have been rewritten into 2-rank matrix operations. The practical difficulties of the Voigt notation, as usually concealed in the scientific literature, will be discussed. Last, we will show a practical X-ray example in which the various models are applied and compared.
According to a recent study, ratings on the Psychotic Depression Assessment Scale (PDAS) obtained via a dedicated semi-structured interview are valid measures of the severity of psychotic depression. This study aimed to further test the validity, scalability and responsiveness of the PDAS in older adults using independent ratings on the Clinical Global Impression Scale – Severity (CGI-S) and the Montgomery-Asberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS) as references.
Ratings were performed at admission and discharge at two old age psychiatric wards in Flanders, Belgium. In total, 62 older adults (mean age: 74.3 years) with psychotic depression were included. The PDAS was rated by trained nurses using the semi-structured PDAS interview. Senior psychiatrists scored the participants on the CGI-S. Psychologists or experienced nurses rated participants on the MADRS. Clinical validity was assessed by correlating the PDAS total scores with CGI-S ratings and MADRS total scores. Mokken analysis was performed to assess the scalability of the PDAS. Responsiveness was assessed by comparing the proportion of participants in remission (PDAS total score <8 at study baseline and endpoint).
The Spearman correlation coefficients were 0.76 and 0.79 for the PDAS versus CGI-S and PDAS versus MADRS, respectively. The Mokken analysis yielded a Loevinger coefficient of 0.46, which is indicative of scalability. At admission, no participants met the PDAS remission criterion. At discharge, 54% (95% confidence interval: 47%–60%) of the patients met this criterion.
The PDAS appears to be a clinically valid, scalable and responsive measure of the severity of psychotic depression in older adults.
A large body of research has explored opportunities to mitigate climate change in agricultural systems; however, less research has explored opportunities across the food system. Here we expand the existing research with a review of potential mitigation opportunities across the entire food system, including in pre-production, production, processing, transport, consumption and loss and waste. We detail and synthesize recent research on the topic, and explore the applicability of different climate mitigation strategies in varying country contexts with different economic and agricultural systems. Further, we highlight some potential adaptation co-benefits of food system mitigation strategies and explore the potential implications of such strategies on food systems as a whole. We suggest that a food systems research approach is greatly needed to capture such potential synergies, and highlight key areas of additional research including a greater focus on low- and middle-income countries in particular. We conclude by discussing the policy and finance opportunities needed to advance mitigation strategies in food systems.
The probability of a Black African finding a matched unrelated donor for a hematopoietic stem cell transplant is minimal due to the high degree of genetic diversity amongst individuals of African origin. This problem could be resolved in part by the establishment of a public cord blood (CB) stem cell bank. The high prevalence of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) amongst women attending antenatal clinics in sub-Saharan Africa together with the risk of mother-to-child transmission increases the risk of transplant transmissible infection. In addition to screening the mother in a period inclusive of 7 days prior to the following delivery, we propose that all CB units considered for storage undergo rigorous and reliable screening for HIV. The Ultrio-plus® assay is a highly specific and sensitive test for detecting HIV, hepatitis-B and hepatitis-C viruses in peripheral blood. We validated the Ultrio-plus® assay for analytical sensitivity in detecting HIV in CB at the level of detection of the assay. Until more comprehensive and sensitive methods are developed, the sensitivity and reliability of the Ultrio-plus® assay suggest that it could be used for the routine screening of CB units in conjunction with currently recommended maternal screening to reduce the risk of transplant transmissible infection.
Feedback learning is essential for behavioral development. We investigated feedback learning in relation to behavior problems after pediatric traumatic brain injury (TBI).
Children aged 6–13 years diagnosed with TBI (n = 112; 1.7 years post-injury) were compared with children with traumatic control (TC) injury (n = 52). TBI severity was defined as mild TBI without risk factors for complicated TBI (mildRF− TBI, n = 24), mild TBI with ⩾1 risk factor for complicated TBI (mildRF+ TBI, n = 51) and moderate/severe TBI (n = 37). The Probabilistic Learning Test was used to measure feedback learning, assessing the effects of inconsistent feedback on learning and generalization of learning from the learning context to novel contexts. The relation between feedback learning and behavioral functioning rated by parents and teachers was explored.
No evidence was found for an effect of TBI on learning from inconsistent feedback, while the moderate/severe TBI group showed impaired generalization of learning from the learning context to novel contexts (p = 0.03, d = −0.51). Furthermore, the mildRF+ TBI and moderate/severe TBI groups had higher parent and teacher ratings of internalizing problems (p's ⩽ 0.04, d's ⩾ 0.47) than the TC group, while the moderate/severe TBI group also had higher parent ratings of externalizing problems (p = 0.006, d = 0.58). Importantly, poorer generalization of learning predicted higher parent ratings of externalizing problems in children with TBI (p = 0.03, β = −0.21) and had diagnostic utility for the identification of children with TBI and clinically significant externalizing behavior problems (area under the curve = 0.77, p = 0.001).
Moderate/severe pediatric TBI has a negative impact on generalization of learning, which may contribute to post-injury externalizing problems.
This is a paper on young jet material in a frustratingly complex environment.
NGC 1052 has a compact, flat or GHz peaked spectrum radio nucleus consisting of bi-symmetric jets, oriented close to the plane of the sky. Many features on both sides move away at υapp ˜0.26 c (H0 = 65 km s−1 Mpc−1). VLBI at seven frequencies shows a wide range of spectral shapes and brightness temperatures; there is clearly free–free absorption, probably together with synchrotron self-absorption, on both sides of the core. The absorbing structure is likely to be geometrically thick and oriented roughly orthogonal to the jets, but it is patchy.
HI VLBI shows atomic gas in front of the approaching as well as the receding jet. There appear to be three velocity systems, at least two of which are local to the AGN environment. The ‘high velocity system’, 125–200 km s−1 redward of systemic, seems restricted to a shell 1–2 pc away from the core. Closer to the centre, this gas might be largely ionised; it could cause the free–free absorption.
WSRT spectroscopy shows 1667 and 1665 MHz OH absorption over a wide velocity range. OH and HI profile similarity suggests co-location of molecular and atomic ‘high velocity’ gas; the connection to H2O masing gas is unclear. Further, at ‘high velocity’ we detected the OH 1612 MHz satellite line in absorption and the 1720 MHz line in emission, with complementary strengths.
In shock, organ perfusion is of vital importance because organ oxygenation is at risk. NO, the main endothelial-derived vasodilator, is crucial for organ perfusion and coronary patency. The availability of NO might depend on the balance between a substrate (arginine) and an inhibitor (asymmetric dimethylarginine; ADMA) of NO synthase. Therefore, we investigated the relationship of arginine, ADMA and their ratio with circulatory markers, disease severity, organ failure and mortality in shock patients. In forty-four patients with shock (cardiogenic n 17, septic n 27), we prospectively measured plasma arginine and ADMA at intensive care unit admission, Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation (APACHE) II-(predicted mortality) and Sequential Organ Failure Assessment (SOFA) score, and circulatory markers to investigate their relationship. Arginine concentration was decreased (34·6 (sd 17·9) μmol/l) while ADMA concentration was within the normal range (0·46 (sd 0·18) μmol/l), resulting in a decrease in the arginine:ADMA ratio. The ratio correlated with several circulatory markers (cardiac index, disseminated intravascular coagulation, bicarbonate, lactate and pH), APACHE II and SOFA score, creatine kinase and glucose. The arginine:ADMA ratio showed an association (OR 0·976, 95 % CI 0·963, 0·997, P = 0·025) and a diagnostic accuracy (area under the curve 0·721, 95 % CI 0·560, 0·882, P = 0·016) for hospital mortality, whereas the arginine or ADMA concentration alone or APACHE II-predicted mortality failed to do so. In conclusion, in shock patients, the imbalance of arginine and ADMA is related to circulatory failure, organ failure and disease severity, and predicts mortality. We propose a pathophysiological mechanism in shock: the imbalance of arginine and ADMA contributes to endothelial and cardiac dysfunction resulting in poor organ perfusion and organ failure, thereby increasing the risk of death.
Knowledge is a vital component of engineering design. Computer systems enriched with logic and engineering knowledge can support engineering design by automating repetitive and time-consuming processes. This automation is enabled using knowledge based engineering (KBE) techniques and can be obtained using dedicated KBE systems or augmented CAD systems, already pervasive throughout engineering industry. The development of these KBE applications is supported by a six-phase development process ranging from engineering process analysis to software development to business implementation. Distinctions and similarities exploiting alternative KBE platforms are addressed for each phase of the development process. An example KBE application is discussed, supporting the design of laminate aircraft fuselage panels. The implementation of the application is emphasised and five key-aspects required for a successful implementation are defined.
The idea that the radio jets in AGN contain material
in relativistic motion is supported by many lines of observational
evidence, including morphology, brightness temperature estimated
with interferometers and with intrinsic variations, interstellar
scintillations, X-rays, and superluminal motion. These are largely
independent, and taken together make an irrefutable case for relativistic
An Eimeria acervulina protein fraction was identified which conferred partial protection against an E. acervulina challenge infection. From this fraction a 37 kDa protein was purified and its corresponding cDNA was cloned and shown to encode a lactate dehydrogenase (LDH). Full length cDNAs encoding LDH from two related species, E. tenella and E. maxima, were also cloned. The homology between the primary amino acid sequences of these three Eimeria LDH enzymes was rather low (66–80%), demonstrating an evolutionary divergence. The Plasmodium LDH crystal structure was used to generate a 3D-model structure of E. tenella LDH, which demonstrated that the many variations in the primary amino acid sequences (P. falciparum LDH and E. tenella LDH show only 47% identity) had not resulted in altered 3D-structures. Only a single LDH gene was identified in Eimeria, which was active as a homotetramer. The protein was present at similar levels throughout different parasitic stages (oocysts, sporozoites, schizonts and merozoites), but its corresponding RNA was only observed in the schizont stage, suggesting that its synthesis is restricted to the intracellular stage.
Atomic gas in the central kiloparsec of young radio galaxies is quite prevalent, as revealed by 21cm H I absorption line observations using the WSRT. The column depths are anti-correlated with the linear sizes of the radio sources, but VLBI reveals that sometimes the neutral hydrogen is situated in a disk or torus on parsec or sub-kiloparsec scales around the central engine, while in other cases the H I is probably associated with star-forming regions along the jets. NGC 1052 is a nearby example, in which, next to some isolated clouds along the jets, there appears to be an atomic and molecular torus with a radius of a few parsecs, but with a central hole of about 0.5 pc, in which the gas is mostly ionised.To search for other articles by the author(s) go to: http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abstract_service.html
This chapter investigates how monetary policy affects business real fixed investment in Belgium, through the interest rate channel and the broad credit channel. These channels are roughly associated with the effects that operate through the user cost of capital and the cash flow–capital ratio. An extensive version of this chapter can be found in Butzen, Fuss and Vermeulen (2001).
Our analysis relies on firm-level annual accounts data. To our knowledge, there is no firm-level evidence so far on the interest rate channel for Belgium. Only a few papers explicitly introduce the user cost of capital in their specification. One example is the cointegration analysis of Gérard and Verschueren (2000) on industry-level data that reveals differences in long-run elasticity of investment to the user cost across Belgian industries.
A couple of papers assess the relevance of financial constraints for particular groups of Belgian firms. The existence of these constraints is a necessary condition for the broad credit channel to be at work. Using an Euler equation framework Vermeulen (1998) finds that only firms that entirely depend on banks as providers of external funds are financially constrained. Deloof (1998) stresses the role of holding companies and corporate groups as providers of intra-group funds. Barran and Peeters (1998) show that firms affiliated to a coordination centre (a particular form of group membership, see section 2, p. 166) are less financially constrained than other firms. In contrast with this evidence, Bond et al. (1997) find no significant effect of financial variables in Belgium.
Surveys conducted in our healthcare facility evaluated factors associated with acceptance of influenza vaccination and opinions regarding influenza prevention and treatment and willingness to pay. Avoiding lost work and low risk were primary reasons for vaccine recipients and non-recipients, respectively. One-third of vaccine recipients would refuse vaccination if asked to pay at least $10.
Ten transmission trials with Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae were carried out. The observed transmission was highly variable, which was surprising since the design of the trials was very similar. We investigated whether the variable transmission could be explained by variation in infectivity of A. pleuropneumoniae infected pigs. We looked for measurable characteristics, which could be indicative for infectious pigs or for the level of infectivity. The characteristic that appeared to be most indicative for a pig being infectious was an A. pleuropneumoniae positive tonsil at necropsy. The characteristic that was correlated to the level of infectivity was the number of A. pleuropneumoniae colonies isolated from the nasal swab, i.e. the probability for an infectious pig to infect a susceptible pig was tenfold higher on days where at least ten colonies were isolated. In this study it is shown that it is possible to measure the bacterial transmission of A. pleuropneumoniae under controlled circumstances if variation in infectivity is taken into account.
We present first results from the analysis of multi-epoch VLBI observations of 241 sources in the CJ-F sample (Caltech Jodrell-Flat-spectrum, Taylor et al. 1996). We have been obtaining 5 GHz VLBI (global and VLBA) snapshot observations of the CJ-F sources (complete with 293 sources) since 1990 in order to create a valid database for thorough statistical tests of pc-scale jet motion in AGN. All 241 CJ-F AGN have been observed at least three times with the VLBA, which enables us to investigate jet component motions and paths. In particular, we concentrate on the analysis of those properties supposed to be essential for gamma-ray production, i.e., superluminal motion and bending.
VLBA observations of the two-sided emission structures in 3C 84 have been used to study the ionized gas in the vicinity of the presumed accretion disk on parsec scales. Strong free-free absorption is seen with a radial gradient, but only upper limits have been obtained on a stimulated recombination line at 23 GHz.