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Scholars interested in labour in Latin America have traditionally paid little attention to trade unions’ legal mobilisation. However, the increasing number of legal complaints filed by workers with labour ministries and/or the courts in countries like Argentina, Brazil and Chile calls for a more serious debate on the role that trade unions play in this process. This article focuses on the Chilean case. Drawing on various sources, it shows that Chilean unions have turned legal complaints into a weapon to gain more rights and curb employers’ power. This process has involved the strongest and most combative unions, and is due to two historical conditions: (1) the obstacles placed in the way of successful resort to more disruptive tactics; (2) the increase in institutional opportunities to report infringements of the law. Overall, the article challenges the current image of the Chilean unions by foregrounding their agency and their achievements over the last decade.
To make a tentative assessment of the consumption of cassava in three countries in South-east Asia and the cyanogenic potential (CNp) of the crop as a possible food safety issue.
We used data from the Ministry of Health in Vietnam and Statistics Authorities in Indonesia and Philippines (mean household consumption per province) to assess cassava consumption. Conversions of units were needed to facilitate the comparison of cassava consumption between countries. The most up-to-date data available regarding both cassava consumption and the CNp of cassava grown in the respective countries were assessed.
Vietnam, Indonesia and Philippines.
Respondents from provinces in Vietnam (nineteen), Indonesia (thirty-three) and Philippines (eighty-one) were asked to complete a recall questionnaire detailing either the previous 24-h’ or the 7-d’ cassava consumption.
Among the three countries, available data indicated that the highest median cassava-consumption figures percapita were from Indonesia and the Philippines (9·01 and 7·28 g/capita per d, respectively), with Vietnam having the least (1·14 g/capita per d). Published information regarding the CNp of cassava in the three countries was limited.
While the findings of the present study are somewhat limited by a lack of available information regarding both the extent of cassava consumption and the CNp of cassava consumed in the three countries, it appears likely that cyanogen intake arising from cassava consumption among the three countries exceeds the FAO/WHO Provisional Maximum Tolerable Daily Intake, although any risk to public health appears limited to a minority of provinces in each country.
Vowel-consonant metathesis is observed in a variety of contexts throughout the Nivaĉle (Mataguayan) grammar. It occurs in both verbal and nominal domains, characteristically resulting from the affixation of a consonant-initial suffix to a consonant-final stem. This paper provides an optimality theoretic account for vowel-consonant metathesis and vowel epenthesis in Nivaĉle. It is demonstrated that metathesis responds to phonological requirements; specifically, it serves to avoid marked structures in the language: complex codas, derived complex onsets, and bad syllable contacts. The prosodic analysis of syllable structure constraints aims to provide broad empirical coverage, as well as a coherent and integrated theoretical interpretation.
Sensitive and selective detection for cancer biomarkers is critical in cancer clinical diagnostics. In this work, we report an electrochemical detection platform for the carbohydrate antigen tumor marker 15-3 (CA15-3). It is based on a composite material of poly [2-methoxy-5- (2-ethylhexyloxy) -1,4-phenylenevinylene] (MEH-PPV) and multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNT), which deposited as active layer of an organic thin-film transistor. This layer was surface functionalized with the Anti-CA15-3 monoclonal antibody. The devices have a favorable electrical output response for VSD source-drain potentials between 0 to 5 volts, and VG as 8 volts. Once the antigen (CA15-3) is recognized by the antibody, the electrical response is diminished. The test has a linear response in the concentration range of 0–30 U mL - 1 of CA 15–3, with a lower detection limit of ~1 U mL - 1 and a stability of 90% with respect to the initial values after storing the device for two weeks. The method was successfully applied to the determination of CA15-3 in serum samples. Possibly, this used composite material has a greater scope and can be applied to another type of detection scheme.
β-Alanine and its derivatives are important starting materials for the preparation of peptides or compounds with biological activity. In this work, the authors are presenting a new approach for the synthesis of N-alkyl-β-amino acids and N-alkyl-β-amino esters using dendrimeric intermediates in a one-pot reaction, with friendly reaction conditions. Dendrimeric compounds, with a pentaerythritol core, were easy prepared and used to obtain the β-amino acid derivatives and β-amino esters with good yields. This paper presents the first reaction where dendrimers are used for synthesizing organic compounds. Spectroscopic characterization by 1H- and 13C-NMR of dendrimers and final products is also presented.
To compare the prevalence of malnutrition (undernutrition and excess weight) by wealth, education level, ethnicity and urban/rural areas in Mexican children and women of reproductive age.
We compared the prevalence of overweight, obesity, wasting/underweight, stunting/short stature and anaemia by socioeconomic and ethnic indicators. For each indicator, we estimated prevalence ratios (PR) adjusted by all other socioeconomic and ethnic indicators. We analysed if results differed by urban/rural areas.
Mexican National Health and Nutrition Survey 2012.
Children <5 years, non-pregnant women 11–19 years and non-pregnant women 20–49 years (n 33 244).
In most age groups, belonging to non-indigenous households, with high wealth, high education and in urban areas were inversely associated with stunting or short stature (PR ranging from 0·40 to 0·83), and wealth and education were inversely associated with anaemia (PR ranging from 0·53 to 0·78). The prevalence of overweight was similar across subgroups among children <5 years; however, among women 11–19 years, wealth, non-indigenous household and urban areas were positively associated (PR ranging from 1·16 to 1·33); and among women 20–49 years, education was inversely associated (PR 0·83).
Socially disadvantaged populations have a higher prevalence of undernutrition, whereas the prevalence of excess weight is either equal (children <5 years), slightly lower (women 11–19 years) or even higher (women 20–49 years) with lower education. These results highlight the need for specific actions to address social inequalities in malnutrition in the Mexican population.
The need to achieve a uniform distribution of concentrated solar flux in the photovoltaic, thermal or any other receivers is a common problem; therefore, the optical characterization of the concentration system is necessary to determinate the physical characteristics of the receptors. In this work, a parabolic dish concentrator of 1.65x1.65 m2, developed by research from the University of Arizona, is optically characterized under normal operating conditions, also known as environmental conditions that refer to non-controlled conditions as solar radiation, environmental temperature and wind velocity that could affect slightly, by thermal and mechanical efforts, the distribution profiles of the concentrated solar radiation. The set used for the evaluation consisted of the parabolic mirror and Chilled Lambertian Flat Surface installed in the focal point on the optical axis of the mirror. The evaluation was divided into two parts: a theoretical part that consist on using ray tracing simulation and an experimental part that corresponds to image analysis. The used methodology in this work has been stablish in many researches, so this is a reliable method. The global optical error was 2.3 mrad under normal operating conditions.
Tuberous sclerosis complex is a rare genetic disorder leading to the growth of hamartomas in multiple organs, including cardiac rhabdomyomas. Children with symptomatic cardiac rhabdomyoma require frequent admissions to intensive care units, have major complications, namely, arrhythmias, cardiac outflow tract obstruction and heart failure, affecting the quality of life and taking on high healthcare cost. Currently, there is no standard pharmacological treatment for this condition, and the management includes a conservative approach and supportive care. Everolimus has shown positive effects on subependymal giant cell astrocytomas, renal angiomyolipoma and refractory seizures associated with tuberous sclerosis complex. However, evidence supporting efficacy in symptomatic cardiac rhabdomyoma is limited to case reports. The ORACLE trial is the first randomised clinical trial assessing the efficacy of everolimus as a specific therapy for symptomatic cardiac rhabdomyoma.
ORACLE is a phase II, prospective, randomised, placebo-controlled, double-blind, multicentre protocol trial. A total of 40 children with symptomatic cardiac rhabdomyoma secondary to tuberous sclerosis complex will be randomised to receive oral everolimus or placebo for 3 months. The primary outcome is 50% or more reduction in the tumour size related to baseline. As secondary outcomes we include the presence of arrhythmias, pericardial effusion, intracardiac obstruction, adverse events, progression of tumour reduction and effect on heart failure.
ORACLE protocol addresses a relevant unmet need in children with tuberous sclerosis complex and cardiac rhabdomyoma. The results of the trial will potentially support the first evidence-based therapy for this condition.
Factors such as the particular combination of parasite–mosquito species, their co-evolutionary history and the host's parasite load greatly affect parasite transmission. However, the importance of these factors in the epidemiology of mosquito-borne parasites, such as avian malaria parasites, is largely unknown. Here, we assessed the competence of two mosquito species [Culex pipiens and Aedes (Ochlerotatus) caspius], for the transmission of four avian Plasmodium lineages (Plasmodium relictum SGS1 and GRW11 and Plasmodium cathemerium-related lineages COLL1 and PADOM01) naturally infecting wild house sparrows. We assessed the effects of parasite identity and parasite load on Plasmodium transmission risk through its effects on the transmission rate and mosquito survival. We found that Cx. pipiens was able to transmit the four Plasmodium lineages, while Ae. caspius was unable to transmit any of them. However, Cx. pipiens mosquitoes fed on birds infected by P. relictum showed a lower survival and transmission rate than those fed on birds infected by parasites related to P. cathemerium. Non-significant associations were found with the host–parasite load. Our results confirm the existence of inter- and intra-specific differences in the ability of Plasmodium lineages to develop in mosquito species and their effects on the survival of mosquitoes that result in important differences in the transmission risk of the different avian malaria parasite lineages studied.
Can popular organizations engage with the state in a lasting collaborative interaction that benefits their interests without being politically co-opted or captured? This article addresses this question by analyzing the interaction between cartonero organizations and the PRO administrations in Buenos Aires City between 2002 and 2018. It shows how cartoneros managed to prompt a change in the PRO’s policies on recyclable waste collection. The article’s main arguments are that popular organizations’ opportunity to gain formal access to the state without losing their autonomy is related to the strategic orientations of both the popular organization and the ruling party, and that such a possibility increases when the popular organization is not part of the incumbent party coalition. The “troubled collaboration” between cartoneros and the PRO was possible due both to the cartoneros’ combination of contentious and institutionalized actions and to an important change in the PRO’s strategic orientation toward cartoneros.
Neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio (NLR), monocyte-to-lymphocyte ratio (MLR), and platelet-to-lymphocyte ratio (PLR) have emerged as important peripheral inflammatory biomarkers. Recent data suggest a possible role of the immune system in the pathophysiology of suicidal behavior (SB). The aim of this study is to evaluate the association among NLR, MLR, and PLR and SB in patients with major depressive disorder (MDD), and to test its validity as a biomarker for suicidality.
We evaluated 538 patients with MDD (mean age [standard deviation] = 43.87 [14.36] years; females: 68.8%). A logistic regression model was estimated to determine the independent factors associated with suicide risk in patients with and without a history of suicide attempt (SA).
Three hundred ninety-three patients (74.7%) had a personal history of SA. Patients with a previous SA were more frequently female (71.9% vs. 59.6%; p = 0.007), significantly younger (41.20 vs. 51.77 years; p < 0.001), had lower depression severity at enrolment (15.58 vs. 18.42; p < 0.000), and significantly higher mean NLR and PLR ratios (2.27 vs. 1.68, p = 0.001; 127.90 vs. 109.97, p = 0.007, respectively). In the final logistic regression model, after controlling for age, sex, and depression severity, NLR was significantly associated with SB (β = 0.489, p = 0.000; odds ratio [95% confidence intervals] = 1.631 [1.266–2.102]). We propose a cut-off value of NLR = 1.30 (sensitivity = 75% and specificity = 35%).
Our data suggest that NLR may be a valuable, reproducible, easily accessible, and cost-effective strategy to determine suicide risk in MDD.
The implications of cannabis use in the onset of early psychosis and the severity of psychotic symptoms have resulted in a proliferation of studies on this issue. However, few have examined the effects of cannabis use on the cognitive symptoms of psychosis (i.e., neurocognitive functioning) in patients with first-episode psychosis (FEP). This systematic review and meta-analysis aim to assess the neurocognitive functioning of cannabis users (CU) and nonusers (NU) with FEP.
Of the 110 studies identified through the systematic review of 6 databases, 7 met the inclusion criteria, resulting in 14 independent samples and 78 effect sizes. The total sample included 304 CU with FEP and 369 NU with FEP. The moderator variables were age at first use, duration of use, percentage of males, and age.
Effect sizes were not significantly different from zero in any neurocognitive domain when users and NU were compared. Part of the variability in effect sizes was explained by the inclusion of the following moderator variables: (1) frequency of cannabis use (β = 0.013, F = 7.56, p = 0.017); (2) first-generation antipsychotics (β = 0.019, F = 34.46, p ≤ 0.001); and (3) country where the study was carried out (β = 0.266, t = 2.06, p = 0.043).
This meta-analysis indicates that cannabis use is not generally associated with neurocognitive functioning in patients with FEP. However, it highlights the deleterious effect of low doses of cannabis in some patients. It also stresses the importance of the type of antipsychotic prescription and cannabis dose as moderator variables in the neurocognitive functioning of CU with FEP.
Neuroanatomical abnormalities in first-episode psychosis (FEP) tend to be subtle and widespread. The vast majority of previous studies have used small samples, and therefore may have been underpowered. In addition, most studies have examined participants at a single research site, and therefore the results may be specific to the local sample investigated. Consequently, the findings reported in the existing literature are highly heterogeneous. This study aimed to overcome these issues by testing for neuroanatomical abnormalities in individuals with FEP that are expressed consistently across several independent samples.
Structural Magnetic Resonance Imaging data were acquired from a total of 572 FEP and 502 age and gender comparable healthy controls at five sites. Voxel-based morphometry was used to investigate differences in grey matter volume (GMV) between the two groups. Statistical inferences were made at p < 0.05 after family-wise error correction for multiple comparisons.
FEP showed a widespread pattern of decreased GMV in fronto-temporal, insular and occipital regions bilaterally; these decreases were not dependent on anti-psychotic medication. The region with the most pronounced decrease – gyrus rectus – was negatively correlated with the severity of positive and negative symptoms.
This study identified a consistent pattern of fronto-temporal, insular and occipital abnormalities in five independent FEP samples; furthermore, the extent of these alterations is dependent on the severity of symptoms and duration of illness. This provides evidence for reliable neuroanatomical alternations in FEP, expressed above and beyond site-related differences in anti-psychotic medication, scanning parameters and recruitment criteria.
To synthetize the state of the art of methods for identifying candidate technologies for disinvestment and propose an evidence-based framework for executing this task.
An interpretative review was conducted. A systematic literature search was performed to identify secondary or tertiary research related to disinvestment initiatives and/or any type of research that specifically described one or more methods for identifying potential candidates technologies, services, or practices for disinvestment. An iterative and critical analysis of the methods described alongside the disinvestment initiatives was performed.
Seventeen systematic reviews on disinvestment or related terms (health technology reassessment or medical reversal) were retrieved and methods of 45 disinvestment initiatives were compared. On the basis of this evidence, we proposed a new framework for identifying these technologies based on the wide definition of evidence provided by Lomas et al. The framework comprises seven basic approaches, eleven triggers and thirteen methods for applying these triggers, which were grouped in embedded and ad hoc methods.
Although identification methods have been described in the literature and tested in different contexts, the proliferation of terms and concepts used to describe this process creates considerable confusion. The proposed framework is a rigorous and flexible tool that could guide the implementation of strategies for identifying potential candidates for disinvestment.
Dietary protein insufficiency has been linked to excessive TAG storage and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) in developing countries. Hepatic TAG accumulation following a low-protein diet may be due to altered peroxisomal, mitochondrial and gut microbiota function. Hepatic peroxisomes and mitochondria normally mediate metabolism of nutrients to provide energy and substrates for lipogenesis. Peroxisome biogenesis and activities can be modulated by odd-chain fatty acids (OCFA) and SCFA that are derived from gut bacteria, for example, propionate and butyrate. Also produced during amino acid metabolism by peroxisomes and mitochondria, propionate and butyrate concentrations correlate inversely with risk of obesity, insulin resistance and NAFLD. In this horizon-scanning review, we have compiled available evidence on the effects of protein malnutrition on OCFA production, arising from loss in mitochondrial, peroxisomal and gut microbiota function, and its association with lipid accumulation in the liver. The methyl donor amino acid composition of dietary protein is an important contributor to liver function and lipid storage; the presence and abundance of dietary branched-chain amino acids can modulate the composition and metabolic activity of the gut microbiome and, on the other hand, can affect protective OCFA and SCFA production in the liver. In preclinical animal models fed with low-protein diets, specific amino acid supplementation can ameliorate fatty liver disease. The association between low dietary protein intake and fatty liver disease is underexplored and merits further investigation, particularly in vulnerable groups with dietary protein restriction in developing countries.
The aim of the current study was to examine the heterogeneity of functional outcomes in first episode psychosis (FEP) patients and related clinical, neurocognitive and sociodemographic factors using a cluster analytic approach.
A large sample of FEP patients (N = 209) was functionally reassessed 10 years after the first contact with an early intervention service. Multiple baseline, 3-year and 10-year follow-up variables were explored.
The cluster analysis emphasized the existence of six independent clusters of functioning: one cluster was normal overall (42.16%), two clusters showed moderate interpersonal (9.63%) or instrumental (12.65%) deficits, two clusters showed more severe interpersonal (12.05%) or interpersonal and instrumental (13.85%) deficits and there was a significantly overall impaired cluster (9.63%). Cluster comparisons showed that several baseline and follow-up factors were differentially involved in functional outcomes.
The current study demonstrated that distinct clusters of functioning in FEP patients can be identified. The fact that a variety of profiles was observed contributes to a better understanding of the nature of the heterogeneity characterizing FEP patients and has clinical implications for developing individualized treatment plans.