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This chapter presents a survey of medieval Greek apocalyptic literature and consists of three parts, which outline typical characteristics of this literary genre, introduce a number of prominent Byzantine apocalyptic narratives, and sketch the manuscript transmission of each.
Healthcare personnel (HCP) were recruited to provide serum samples, which were tested for antibodies against Ebola or Lassa virus to evaluate for asymptomatic seroconversion.
From 2014 to 2016, 4 patients with Ebola virus disease (EVD) and 1 patient with Lassa fever (LF) were treated in the Serious Communicable Diseases Unit (SCDU) at Emory University Hospital. Strict infection control and clinical biosafety practices were implemented to prevent nosocomial transmission of EVD or LF to HCP.
All personnel who entered the SCDU who were required to measure their temperatures and complete a symptom questionnaire twice daily were eligible.
No employee developed symptomatic EVD or LF. EVD and LF antibody studies were performed on sera samples from 42 HCP. The 6 participants who had received investigational vaccination with a chimpanzee adenovirus type 3 vectored Ebola glycoprotein vaccine had high antibody titers to Ebola glycoprotein, but none had a response to Ebola nucleoprotein or VP40, or a response to LF antigens.
Patients infected with filoviruses and arenaviruses can be managed successfully without causing occupation-related symptomatic or asymptomatic infections. Meticulous attention to infection control and clinical biosafety practices by highly motivated, trained staff is critical to the safe care of patients with an infection from a special pathogen.
This paper is programmatic: it defines the concept of “phantom borders” and describes its heuristic potential. The proposed approach positions itself between structuralist methodologies that postulate stable social and cultural regional structures and deconstructive viewpoints that reject the former, while focusing on the discursive dimension of regions. The paper takes this tension as its point of departure. Viewed from a situational perspective, phantom borders are neither to be understood as immutable structures nor as purely discursive constructions, but rather as an outcome of the interaction between three interwoven levels, which are simultaneously: 1) imagined in mental maps and discourses, 2) experienced and perceived by the respective actors, and 3) shaped by everyday practices and continuously updated and implemented. Phantom borders are context sensitive. We argue that the topic of phantom borders is not only relevant for research on eastern Europe, but also for research in “new area studies” in general.
Grape marc (GPM) is a viticulture by-product that is rich in secondary compounds, including condensed tannins (CT), and is used as a supplement in livestock feeding practices. The aim of this study was to determine whether feeding GPM to lactating dairy cows would alter the milk proteome through changes in nitrogen (N) partitioning. Ten lactating Holstein cows were fed a total mixed ration (TMR) top-dressed with either 1.5 kg dry matter (DM)/cow/day GPM (GPM group; n = 5) or 2.0 kg DM/cow/day of a 50:50 beet pulp: soy hulls mix (control group; n = 5). Characterization of N partitioning and calculation of N partitioning was completed through analysis of plasma urea-N, urine, feces, and milk urea-N. Milk samples were collected for general composition analysis, HPLC quantification of the high abundance milk proteins (including casein isoforms, α-lactalbumin, and β-lactoglobulin) and liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) analysis of the low abundance protein enriched milk fraction. No differences in DMI, N parameters, or calculated N partitioning were observed across treatments. Dietary treatment did not affect milk yield, milk protein or fat content or yield, or the concentrations of high abundance milk proteins quantified by HPLC analysis. Of the 127 milk proteins that were identified by LC-MS/MS analysis, 16 were affected by treatment, including plasma proteins and proteins associated with the blood-milk barrier, suggesting changes in mammary passage. Immunomodulatory proteins, including butyrophilin subfamily 1 member 1A and serum amyloid A protein, were higher in milk from GPM-fed cows. Heightened abundance of bioactive proteins in milk caused by dietary-induced shifts in mammary passage could be a feasible method to enhance the healthfulness of milk for both the milk-fed calf and human consumer. Additionally, the proteome shifts observed in this trial could provide a starting point for the identification of biomarkers suitable for use as indicators of mammary function.
Four experiments examine how lack of awareness of inequality affect behaviour towards the rich and poor. In Experiment 1, participants who became aware that wealthy individuals donated a smaller percentage of their income switched from rewarding the wealthy to rewarding the poor. In Experiments 2 and 3, participants who played a public goods game – and were assigned incomes reflective of the US income distribution either at random or on merit – punished the poor (for small absolute contributions) and rewarded the rich (for large absolute contributions) when incomes were unknown; when incomes were revealed, participants punished the rich (for their low percentage of income contributed) and rewarded the poor (for their high percentage of income contributed). In Experiment 4, participants provided with public education contributions for five New York school districts levied additional taxes on mostly poorer school districts when incomes were unknown, but targeted wealthier districts when incomes were revealed. These results shed light on how income transparency shapes preferences for equity and redistribution. We discuss implications for policy-makers.
Though used frequently in machine learning, boosted decision trees are largely unused in political science, despite many useful properties. We explain how to use one variant of boosted decision trees, AdaBoosted decision trees (ADTs), for social science predictions. We illustrate their use by examining a well-known political prediction problem, predicting U.S. Supreme Court rulings. We find that our ADT approach outperforms existing predictive models. We also provide two additional examples of the approach, one predicting the onset of civil wars and the other predicting county-level vote shares in U.S. presidential elections.
To identify ways that the built environment may support or disrupt safe doffing of personal protective equipment (PPE) in biocontainment units (BCU).
We observed interactions between healthcare workers (HCWs) and the built environment during 41 simulated PPE donning and doffing exercises.
The BCUs of 4 Ebola treatment facilities and 1 high-fidelity BCU mockup.
A total of 64 HCWs (41 doffing HCWs and 15 trained observers) participated in this study.
In each facility, we observed how the physical environment influences risky behaviors by the HCW. The environmental design impeded communication between trained observers (TOs) and HCWs because of limited window size or visual obstructions with louvers, which allowed unobserved errors. The size and configuration of the doffing area impacted HCW adherence to protocol, and lack of clear demarcation of zones resulted in HCWs inadvertently leaving the doffing area and stepping back into the contaminated areas. Lack of standard location for items resulted in equipment and supplies frequently shifting positions. Finally, different solutions for maintaining balance while removing shoe covers (ie, chair, hand grips, and step stool) had variable success. We identified the 5 key requirements that doffing areas must achieve to support safe doffing of PPE, and we developed a matrix of proposed design strategies that can be implemented to meet those requirements.
Simple, low-cost environmental design interventions can provide structure to support and improve HCW safety in BCUs. These interventions should be implemented in both current and future BCUs.
The functional composition of plant communities in montane regions has been studied for decades, and most recent analyses find that environmentally favourable landscapes at lower altitudes tend to be dominated by species with resource-acquisitive traits, while more resource-conservative taxa dominate higher-altitude communities. However, it is unclear the extent to which this pattern is driven by co-gradient variation within clades or changes in clade representation across the gradient. To test for co-gradient variation, species composition, phylogenetic structure and functional traits were quantified for 97 species within the plant family Melastomataceae at five locations across a 2500-m altitudinal gradient along Volcán Barva in Costa Rica. Average melastome leaf force to punch, specific leaf area and leaf size vary with altitude, while four other functional traits do not. Taxonomic dissimilarity between communities was correlated with altitudinal difference, while phylogenetic dissimilarity was correlated with altitudinal dissimilarity only when measured with a metric that emphasizes shallow turnover of the tips of the phylogeny. These results highlight how species turnover may be more pronounced than functional or phylogenetic variation along altitudinal gradients. In addition, these results highlight the conservation value of lowland tropical forests, which here harbour a disproportionate amount of phylogenetic and functional diversity.
Postoperative cognitive impairment is among the most common medical complications associated with surgical interventions – particularly in elderly patients. In our aging society, it is an urgent medical need to determine preoperative individual risk prediction to allow more accurate cost–benefit decisions prior to elective surgeries. So far, risk prediction is mainly based on clinical parameters. However, these parameters only give a rough estimate of the individual risk. At present, there are no molecular or neuroimaging biomarkers available to improve risk prediction and little is known about the etiology and pathophysiology of this clinical condition. In this short review, we summarize the current state of knowledge and briefly present the recently started BioCog project (Biomarker Development for Postoperative Cognitive Impairment in the Elderly), which is funded by the European Union. It is the goal of this research and development (R&D) project, which involves academic and industry partners throughout Europe, to deliver a multivariate algorithm based on clinical assessments as well as molecular and neuroimaging biomarkers to overcome the currently unsatisfying situation.
Working memory (WM) deficits in schizophrenia (SCZ) have been linked to impairments in the encoding phase that are associated with aberrant neuronal functioning. Similar abnormalities have been observed in unaffected first-degree relatives (REL) and are thus discussed as candidate endophenotypes. The process of WM consolidation – i.e. the formation of durable WM representations – is assumed to be impaired in SCZ, but no study has investigated WM consolidation and neuronal correlates of visual WM encoding in REL before.
We examined whole-brain activation during the encoding phase with an event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging study design in 25 SCZ subjects, 22 REL subjects, and 25 healthy controls. Subjects performed a visual masked change detection task that assessed WM performance and consolidation.
SCZ showed deficient WM performance indicating an impairment consolidation process, accompanied by broad neuronal hypoactivation, most prominently in frontal brain regions, as well as increased activity of the anterior cingulate during the encoding phase. REL showed decreased neuronal activity in the middle and medial frontal gyrus and increased activity in the precentral gyrus and insula during encoding, but no significant behavioral deficits were observed. In respect of given consolidation times, REL showed a shift from decreased frontal activity at short time intervals to increased frontal activity at longer time intervals.
Findings suggest WM consolidation may be slowed in REL so that the deployment of compensatory neuronal resources during encoding is needed to assure proper WM performance. This supports the view of WM-related neuronal dysfunctions as a potential endophenotypic marker.
We compared rotavirus detection patterns before (2001–2006) and after (2008–2015) rotavirus vaccine introduction. We also compared rotavirus detection patterns in odd (2009, 2011, 2013, 2015) and even (2008, 2010, 2012, 2014) years post-vaccine separately. Results of stool rotavirus antigen testing from inpatient, outpatient and emergency department encounters from July 2000 to July 2015 at two paediatric hospital laboratories in Atlanta, Georgia were reviewed. Post-vaccine, rotavirus detection declined (30.2% vs. 13.7% (overall 54.6% decline, P <0.001)), occurred more frequently outside the rotavirus season (19.8% vs. 3.5%; P < 0.001), and was more common among older children (26 vs. 13 median months of age; P < 0.001). During odd years post-vaccine, rotavirus detection was significantly higher than even years (20.2% vs. 6.4%; P < 0.001). Rotavirus detection declined substantially and developed a biennial pattern in the post-vaccine era. The intensity and temporality of rotavirus detection in odd years post-vaccine resembled that observed pre-vaccine, although considerably reduced in magnitude.
High flavonoid consumption can improve vascular health. Exploring flavonoid–metabolome relationships in population-based settings is challenging, as: (i) there are numerous confounders of the flavonoid–metabolome relationship; and (ii) the set of dependent metabolite variables are inter-related, highly variable and multidimensional. The Metabolite Fingerprint Score has been developed as a means of approaching such data. This study aims to compare its performance with that of more traditional methods, in identifying the metabolomic fingerprint of high and low flavonoid consumers. This study did not aim to identify biomarkers of intake, but rather to explore how systemic metabolism differs in high and low flavonoid consumers. Using liquid chromatography–tandem MS, 174 circulating plasma metabolites were profiled in 584 men and women who had complete flavonoid intake assessment. Participants were randomised to one of two datasets: (a) training dataset, to determine the models for the discrimination variables (n 399); and (b) validation dataset, to test the capacity of the variables to differentiate higher from lower total flavonoid consumers (n 185). The stepwise and full canonical variables did not discriminate in the validation dataset. The Metabolite Fingerprint Score successfully identified a unique pattern of metabolites that discriminated high from low flavonoid consumers in the validation dataset in a multivariate-adjusted setting, and provides insight into the relationship of flavonoids with systemic lipid metabolism. Given increasing use of metabolomics data in dietary association studies, and the difficulty in validating findings using untargeted metabolomics, this paper is of timely importance to the field of nutrition. However, further validation studies are required.
In a new design approach, C/C–SiC sandwich structures have been realized via liquid silicon infiltration and in situ joining methods. In the first process step, the carbon fiber reinforced polymer preforms for the planar skin plates as well as for the core structures were manufactured via warm pressing and autoclave technique, using C fiber fabrics preimpregnated with phenolic resin. Thereby, two types of C/C–SiC core structures were used: foldcore and grid core. In the second process step, the sandwich components were pyrolyzed separately, leading to porous C/C preforms and subsequently joined to a C/C sandwich structure, using an adhesive. In the last process step, the C/C structure was infiltrated with molten Si, and the SiC matrix was built up by a chemical reaction of Si and C, leading to a permanently joined C/C–SiC sandwich structure. For mechanical characterization, sandwich specimens were manufactured and tested in 4 point bending.
Recent developments in U.S-Cuba relations have resulted in a proliferating global interest in Cuba, including its legal regime. This comprehensive Guide aims to fill a noticeable void in the availability of information in English on this enigmatic jurisdiction's legal order, and on how to conduct research related to it. Covered topics include “The Constitution,” “Legislation and Codes,” “The Judiciary,” “Cuba in the International Arena,” and “The Legal Profession.” A detailed section on “Cuban Legal Materials in U.S. and Canadian Libraries” is also featured. Although the Guide emphasizes sources in English and English-language translation, materials in Spanish are likewise included as English-language equivalents are often unavailable. The Guide's 12 authors are members of the Latin American Law Interest Group of the American Association of Law Libraries’ Foreign, Comparative, and International Law Special Interest Section (FCIL-SIS).
We investigate the effect of personality on prosocial behavior in a Bayesian multilevel meta-analysis (MLMA) of 15 published, interdisciplinary experimental studies. With data from the 15 studies constituting nearly 2500 individual observations, we find that the Big Five traits of Agreeableness and Openness are significantly and positively associated with prosocial behavior, while none of the other three traits are. These results are robust to a number of different model specifications and operationalizations of prosociality, and they greatly clarify the contradictory findings in the literature on the relationship between personality and prosocial behavior. Though previous research has indicated that incentivized experiments result in reduced prosocial behavior, we find no evidence that monetary incentivization of participants affects prosocial tendencies. By leveraging individual observations from multiple studies and explicitly modeling the multilevel structure of the data, MLMA permits the simultaneous estimation of study- and individual-level effects. The Bayesian approach allows us to estimate study-level effects in an unbiased and efficient manner, even with a relatively small number of studies. We conclude by discussing the limitations of our study and the advantages and disadvantages of the MLMA method.