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This analysis was conducted to evaluate the evidence of the efficacy of iron biofortification interventions on iron status and functional outcomes. Iron deficiency is a major public health problem worldwide, with a disproportionate impact on women and young children, particularly those living in resource-limited settings. Biofortification, or the enhancing of micronutrient content in staple crops, is a promising and sustainable agriculture-based approach to improve nutritional status. Previous randomised efficacy trials and meta-analyses have demonstrated that iron-biofortification interventions improved iron biomarkers; however, no systematic reviews to date have examined the efficacy of biofortification interventions on health outcomes. We conducted a systematic review of the efficacy of iron-biofortified staple crops on iron status and functional outcomes: cognitive function (e.g. attention, memory) and physical performance. Five studies from three randomised efficacy trials (i.e. rice, pearl millet, beans) conducted in the Philippines, India and Rwanda were identified for inclusion in this review. Iron status (Hb, serum ferritin, soluble transferrin receptor, total body iron, α-1-acid glycoprotein) was measured at baseline and endline in each trial; two studies reported cognitive outcomes, and no studies reported other functional outcomes. Meta-analyses were conducted using DerSimonian and Laird random-effects methods. Iron-biofortified crop interventions significantly improved cognitive performance in attention and memory domains, compared with conventional crops. There were no significant effects on categorical outcomes such as iron deficiency or anaemia. Further studies are needed to determine the efficacy of iron-biofortified staple crops on human health, including additional functional outcomes and other high-risk populations.
Each year in the United States, an estimated 525 000 infections, 2900 hospitalizations, and 82 deaths are attributed to consumption of pork. We analyzed the epidemiology of outbreaks attributed to pork in the United States reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) 1998–2015. During that period, 288 outbreaks were attributed to pork, resulting in 6372 illnesses, 443 hospitalizations, and four deaths. The frequency of outbreaks attributed to pork decreased by 37% during this period, consistent with a decline in total foodborne outbreaks. However, outbreaks attributed to pork increased by 73% in 2015 (19 outbreaks) compared with the previous 3 years (average of 11 outbreaks per year), without a similar increase in total foodborne outbreaks. Most (>99%) of these outbreaks occurred among people exposed in the same state. The most frequent etiology shifted from Staphylococcus aureus toxin during 1998–2001 (19%) to Salmonella during 2012–2015 (46%). Outbreaks associated with ham decreased from eight outbreaks per year during 1998–2001, to one per year during 2012–2015 (P < 0·01). Additional efforts are necessary to reduce outbreaks and sporadic illnesses associated with pork products.
Survey and excavation by the Burials and Identity team of the Desert Migrations Project (DMP) focused in 2011 on the so-called Royal Cemetery of the Garamantes close to the Jarma escarpment, a few km south of Old Jarma. This Late Garamantian cemetery contains two distinct zones (GSC030 and GSC031) of monumental rectangular stepped tombs, which were plaster-coated and fronted by massive offering tables and stelae. Previous dating evidence has suggested they span the fourth to sixth centuries AD. However, many questions remain about the cemetery and the overall recording of the monuments had hitherto been left incomplete. The 2011 work focused on the excavation of one of the larger monuments in GSC030 and several of the smaller tombs in the neighbouring GSC031, along with an overall survey of both cemetery areas and a detailed record of the stelae and offering tables still present in considerable numbers. In addition, the team made a survey along the escarpment between the Royal Cemetery and Zinkekrā, completing and uniting the various surveys carried out by the DMP around Zinkekrā, Watwāt and the Jarma Escarpment. A survey of foggaras and settlement in the ad-Dīsa embayment was also undertaken.
Originally a maker of wax anatomical models, William Fothergill Cooke (1806–79) became aware of the new electric telegraph while he studied anatomy in Germany. Hoping initially for a return of perhaps a hundred pounds from the English railway companies, he abandoned his studies and turned his attention to the commercial development of the technology, which, though demonstrable in laboratory conditions, was still little understood. Because the process relied on secrecy and many different clockmakers and engineers, it soon became so fraught that Cooke almost gave up before its completion. However, after receiving the encouragement of Michael Faraday and joining forces with Charles Wheatstone, Cooke finally brought his plans to fruition and eventually set up the Electric Telegraph Company in 1846. First published in 1895, this book includes a selection of his private letters, written as he worked and often movingly uncertain, as well as a short memoir.