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Managing collections means ensuring that the data about them are useful, available, and accurate. In addition to the technical aspects of data management, there are layers of political and social structure that direct the construction and use of collections data. The Minnesota Historical Society (MNHS) employs a set of data standards that allows us to gather electronic cataloging data from a wide community of archaeology researchers who are depositing collections at our institution. Though met with initial resistance, these standards have facilitated publication in Open Context as linked open data. Furthermore, institutional discussions concerning Creative Commons licensing and the cultural sensitivity of collections data were precipitated by publication, highlighting the role of social agreement in data management. We found that successful employment of data standards must take into account the needs of the various stakeholders and further their interests. Standards will be most useful and successful when they are lightweight, are supported by training and documentation, and exist as part of a system that allows for more than one way to characterize the collections.
This study investigated whether higher maternal choline levels mitigate effects of marijuana on fetal brain development. Choline transported into the amniotic fluid from the mother activates α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors on fetal cerebro-cortical inhibitory neurons, whose development is impeded by cannabis blockade of their cannabinoid-1(CB1) receptors.
Marijuana use was assessed during pregnancy from women who later brought their newborns for study. Mothers were informed about choline and other nutrients, but not specifically for marijuana use. Maternal serum choline was measured at 16 weeks gestation.
Marijuana use for the first 10 weeks gestation or more by 15% of mothers decreased newborns' inhibition of evoked potentials to repeated sounds (d’ = 0.55, p < 0.05). This effect was ameliorated if women had higher gestational choline (rs = −0.50, p = 0.011). At 3 months of age, children whose mothers continued marijuana use through their 10th gestational week or more had poorer self-regulation (d’ = −0.79, p < 0.05). This effect was also ameliorated if mothers had higher gestational choline (rs = 0.54, p = 0.013). Maternal choline levels correlated with the children's improved duration of attention, cuddliness, and bonding with parents.
Prenatal marijuana use adversely affects fetal brain development and subsequent behavioral self-regulation, a precursor to later, more serious problems in childhood. Stopping marijuana use before 10 weeks gestational age prevented these effects. Many mothers refuse to cease use because of familiarity with marijuana and belief in its safety. Higher maternal choline mitigates some of marijuana's adverse effects on the fetus.
Thirty warthogs, Phacochoerus africanus, were collected in the Pongola Game Reserve, South Africa and examined for helminths. Gastrointestinal helminth assemblages comprised Gastrodiscus aegyptiacus, the cestode genus Moniezia and seven species of nematodes. A single warthog harboured a metacestode of Taenia hydatigena in the mesenteries. No helminths were found in the heart, lungs or liver of the warthogs. Probstmayria vivipara and Murshidia spp. were the most prevalent as well as abundant helminth species, followed by Physocephalus sexalatus. The incidence of Moniezia did not differ between hosts of different sex or age. Numbers of Murshidia spp. were not affected by host sex, but were higher in adults than in juveniles. Conversely, burdens of Trichostrongylus thomasi were not affected by host age, but were higher in males than in females. While not highly significant, helminth assemblages in male warthogs were more species rich than in females. Helminth communities in the three genera of wild sub-Saharan suids are largely unique, but Ph. africanus and Hylochoerus meinertzhageni share more worm species with each other than with Potamochoerus larvatus, possibly because the former two are more closely related. Overlap between helminth communities of African wild suids and those of other suids and Tayassuidae worldwide is limited.
A nineteen element mercuric iodide (HgI2) detector array has been developed in order to investigate the potential of using this technology for in-vivo x-ray and gamma-ray imaging. A prototype cross-grid detector array was constructed with hexagonal pixels of 1.9 mm diameter (active area = 3.28 mm2) and 0.2 mm thick septa. The overall detector active area is roughly 65 mm2. A detector thickness of 1.2 mm was used to achieve about 100% efficiency at 60 keV and 67% efficiency at 140 keV The detector fabrication, geometry and structure were optimized for charge collection and to minimize crosstalk between elements. A section of a standard high resolution cast-lead gamma-camera collimator was incorporated into the detector to provide collimation matching the discrete pixel geometry. Measurements of spectral and spatial performance of the array were made using 241-Am and 99m-Tc sources. These measurements were compared with similar measurements made using an optimized single HgI2 x-ray detector with active area of about 3 mm2 and thickness of 500 μm.
Optical parametric chirped-pulse amplification (OPCPA) [Dubietis et al., Opt. Commun. 88, 437 (1992)] implemented by multikilojoule Nd:glass pump lasers is a promising approach to produce ultraintense pulses (
). Technologies are being developed to upgrade the OMEGA EP Laser System with the goal to pump an optical parametric amplifier line (EP OPAL) with two of the OMEGA EP beamlines. The resulting ultraintense pulses (1.5 kJ, 20 fs,
) would be used jointly with picosecond and nanosecond pulses produced by the other two beamlines. A midscale OPAL pumped by the Multi-Terawatt (MTW) laser is being constructed to produce 7.5-J, 15-fs pulses and demonstrate scalable technologies suitable for the upgrade. MTW OPAL will share a target area with the MTW laser (50 J, 1 to 100 ps), enabling several joint-shot configurations. We report on the status of the MTW OPAL system, and the technology development required for this class of all-OPCPA laser system for ultraintense pulses.
Immunocastration provides a less invasive means of castrating lambs. Considering increasing consumer awareness, the efficacy of this technique on commercial slaughter lambs needs to be further investigated and its effects on growth and stress responses need to be established. This study compared the growth rate, testes size and stress responses of immunocastrated lambs with that of lambs physically castrated with a Burdizzo clamp, as well as intact rams. A total of 40 Dohne Merino ram lambs (average live weight = 45.4±3.68 kg) were randomly allocated to the following four treatment groups: control (intact; R), Burdizzo-castrated (on day 2; B), immunocastrated with a 4-week (ICS4), or a 6-week (ICS6) interval between the second immunocastration vaccination and slaughter. Within the immunocastration treatments, the reaction to vaccination was assessed through injection site scoring, recording the local injection site surface temperature and assigning a walking score. The response to Burdizzo castration was assessed by scoring the reaction during the procedure, testes palpation reaction, walking gait and measuring testis temperature. Additional parameters recorded included BW, serum cortisol concentration, scrotal circumference and rectal temperature. Pain behaviours were described for the short-, medium- and long-term effects after the two methods of castration. Predominantly, tissue-hardening and bruising occurred at the injection sites of immunocastrates, but little effect was observed on walking comfort and no effect on injection site temperature or rectal temperatures. After Burdizzo castration, lambs spent more time in abnormal postures, and from day 3 (D3) to D8 of the trial, discomfort was observed during testes palpation and walking in B lambs. Serum cortisol concentrations were elevated in B lambs on D3 and D15, indicating physiological stress. Thus, immunocastration improved the welfare of castrated lambs as assessed by cortisol secretion, scrotal swelling and pain behaviours, without influencing growth rate.