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The carrasco is a dense, shrubby vegetation type that covers the higher parts of table-top mountains in north-eastern Brazil. The vegetation of this phytophysiognomy is often considered to have biogeographical and ecological affinities with the cerrado of Central Brazil, but the biogeographical affinities of its avifauna remain unclear. In recent years, deforestation due to local economic activities has been particularly severe in some carrasco-dominated landscapes. In 2013, we initiated avian surveys at the Fazenda Pau D‘Arco, a privately owned property located on top of the Araripe Plateau, to evaluate the effects of a legal forest management program on the avifauna. Here, we present the results of four years of avian inventories to: i) characterize a well-preserved patch of carrasco vegetation; ii) assess avian biogeographical affinities of this vegetation type; iii) identify associations between managed/unmanaged areas and bird species; and iv) provide baseline data for future avian monitoring studies. Using different survey methods, we provide a list of 148 bird species, including several dry-forest specialists and caatinga endemics. Biogeographically, the avifauna of the carrasco represents a subsample of the Caatinga dry forest, lacking cerrado elements. Forest management significantly affected the distribution of several bird species in the study area. We found that 1/5 of the species (24) recorded during our standardized surveys were significantly associated with either unmanaged (14 species) or managed (10 species) areas. Species such as the Ceará Leaftosser Sclerurus cearensis, a globally vulnerable species, have only been detected in non-managed areas and therefore can be negatively affected by the management program. We also present data on 16 avian taxa with ecological and conservation concerns. By presenting a fairly complete and documented list of the avifauna, we characterize the carrasco avifauna and offer the tools to evaluate the effects of forest management on this poorly known vegetation type.
This study aimed to describe the viability of domestic feline spermatozoa after epididymal tail vitrification. For this, 10 pairs of testis–epididymis complexes were used. The epididymal tails were vitrified using the solid-surface vitrification (SSV) method, in which two vitrification media containing ethylene glycol (EG) 40% or glycerol (GLY) 40% were tested. Vitrification with the presence of EG resulted in better results for all sperm motility parameters (motility, vigour and CASA) compared with GLY (P < 0.05). There were no statistical differences for sperm viability and acrosome integrity, plasma membrane integrity, or overall health of morphologically normal sperm before or after vitrification among experimental groups. In conclusion, epididymal tail vitrification appears to be a suitable method for long-term storage of cat sperm, especially if the procedure is performed with EG as the cryoprotectant.
Generalising previous results on classical braid groups by Artin and Lin, we determine the values of m, n ∈ $\mathbb N$ for which there exists a surjection between the n- and m-string braid groups of an orientable surface without boundary. This result is essentially based on specific properties of their lower central series, and the proof is completely combinatorial. We provide similar but partial results in the case of orientable surfaces with boundary components and of non-orientable surfaces without boundary. We give also several results about the classification of different representations of surface braid groups in symmetric groups.
The production of specialty coffee has several factors and parameters that are added up in the course of production, so that the quality is expressed in the act of consumption. Based on this scenario, this study included the analysis of ten genotypes of arabica coffee, the materials being subjected to irrigated and rainfed water regimes, in a low altitude region, to identify responses for sensory and physical–chemical quality. The genotypes were evaluated in a split-plot scheme with a randomized block design, with three replications. Arabica coffee fruits were harvested with 80% cherry seeds and processed by the wet method. Subsequently, the characteristics related to physical–chemical and sensory analyses were evaluated. The genotypes of the Paraíso group showed great variability for the physical–chemical and sensory variables for rainfed and irrigated regimes. The genotypes of the Catuaí group, however, showed less variability for sensory characteristics in both cultivation environments and for physical–chemical characteristics in the irrigated regime. In the sensorial data set, the genotypes Catuaí 144 CCF and Catuaí 144 SFC (when irrigated) and Paraíso H 419-3-3-7-16-2, Paraíso H 419-3-3-7-16-11 and Catucaí 24-137 (rainfed cultivation), are more favourable to the production of specialty coffee at low altitude.
This article explores the phenomenon of the monstrous in Seneca's Medea by focusing on the emotions of its main character, in particular demonstrating that they are not merely an expression of Medea's inner psychological sphere but are intrinsically connected with her existential search for recognition in her surrounding world, a world especially marked by its social, cosmic, and mythical dimensions. The monstrous nature of Medea's emotions should be understood in the light of the wider phenomenon of the monstrous in this play, where it is a pervasive phenomenon, in the sense that it transcends the emotions of the main character and is present throughout the play as a tragic, mythically encoded enactment of the dissolution of social, religious, and cosmic boundaries. Other manifestations of the monstrous will be referred to in passing.
The ability to recognize others’ emotions is a central aspect of socioemotional functioning. Emotion recognition impairments are well documented in Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, but it is less understood whether they are also present in mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Results on facial emotion recognition are mixed, and crucially, it remains unclear whether the potential impairments are specific to faces or extend across sensory modalities,
In the current study, 32 MCI patients and 33 cognitively intact controls completed a comprehensive neuropsychological assessment and two forced-choice emotion recognition tasks, including visual and auditory stimuli. The emotion recognition tasks required participants to categorize emotions in facial expressions and in nonverbal vocalizations (e.g., laughter, crying) expressing neutrality, anger, disgust, fear, happiness, pleasure, surprise, or sadness.
MCI patients performed worse than controls for both facial expressions and vocalizations. The effect was large, similar across tasks and individual emotions, and it was not explained by sensory losses or affective symptomatology. Emotion recognition impairments were more pronounced among patients with lower global cognitive performance, but they did not correlate with the ability to perform activities of daily living.
These findings indicate that MCI is associated with emotion recognition difficulties and that such difficulties extend beyond vision, plausibly reflecting a failure at supramodal levels of emotional processing. This highlights the importance of considering emotion recognition abilities as part of standard neuropsychological testing in MCI, and as a target of interventions aimed at improving social cognition in these patients.
With over two million deaths and almost 100 million confirmed cases, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused a “tsunami of suffering.” Health care workers, including palliative care workers, have been severely impacted. This study explores how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted palliative care workers around the world and describes the coping strategies they have adopted to face their specific situation.
We conducted a qualitative analysis of written, unstructured comments provided by respondents to a survey of IAHPC members between May and June 2020. Free text was exported to MAX QDA, and a thematic analysis was performed by reading the comments and developing a coding frame.
Seventy-seven palliative care workers from 41 countries submitted at least one written comment, resulting in a data corpus of 10,694 words and a total of 374 coded comments. Eight main themes are emerged from the analysis: palliative care development, workforce impact, work reorganization, palliative care reconceptualization, economic and financial impacts, increased risk, emotional impact, and coping strategies.
Significance of results
The pandemic has had a huge impact on palliative care workers including their ability to work and their financial status. It has generated increased workloads and placed them in vulnerable positions that affect their emotional well-being, resulting in distress and burnout. Counseling and support networks provide important resilience-building buffers. Coping strategies such as team and family support are important factors in workers’ capacity to adapt and respond. The pandemic is changing the concept and praxis of palliative care. Government officials, academia, providers, and affected populations need to work together to develop, and implement steps to ensure palliative care integration into response preparedness plans so as not to leave anyone behind, including health workers.
How was ‘international trade’ between former European empires and their former colonies in Africa governed after decolonisation? In the 1960s, the vast majority of African countries became independent, and so a new arrangement was necessary to govern their economic relations with Europe. The Yaoundé Conventions were then concluded between the European Community (EC) and the bloc of postcolonial African countries. Specialised literature provides comprehensive accounts of the Yaoundé Conventions. However, little is known about the role of law and lawyers in their making and governance. Part of this story concerns political and intellectual struggles in the legal profession about which projects, ideas, and norms would be applicable. Another part concerns the work of lawyers to organise those policies, theories and visions into an emerging conception and to employ it to influence the production and management of the Yaoundé Conventions. This article combines historical and socio-legal approaches to show that a distinct legal conception of regional trade agreements—called here the ‘development framework’—was pivotal to the design and application of the Yaoundé Conventions. This conception was primarily advanced and persuasively used by European and African lawyers. This contrasts with the conventional view that trade agreements are variations on a single legal concept. It is concluded that EC–Africa regionalism was a singular experiment, due significantly to the unique features of this legal conception.
Deaf people communicate naturally using visual-spatial languages, called sign languages (SL). Although SLs are recognized as a language in many countries, the problems faced by Deaf people for accessing information remain. As a result, they have difficulties exercising their citizenship and access information in SLs, which usually leads to linguistic and knowledge acquisition delays. Some scientific works have been developed to address these problems related to the machine translation of spoken languages to sign languages. However, the existing machine translation platforms have some limitations, especially in syntactic and lexical nature. Thus, this work aims to develop a mechanism for machine translation to Libras, the Brazilian Sign Language, with syntactic-semantic adequacy. It consists of an automatic translation component for Libras based on syntactic-semantic translation rules and a formal syntactic-semantic rule description language. As proof of concept of the proposed approach, we created a specific grammar for Libras translation exploring these aspects and integrating these elements into VLibras Suite, a service for machine translation of digital content in Brazilian Portuguese (BP) to Libras. We performed several tests using this modified version of VLibras to measure the level of comprehension of the output generated by the new translator mechanism. In the computational experiments, as well as in the actual tests with Deaf and hearing users, the proposed approach was able to improve the results of the current VLibras version.
To identify dietary patterns and prospectively evaluate their influence on the BMI Z-score of adolescents.
A longitudinal study, using data from the Longitudinal Study on Sedentary Behavior, Physical Activity, Eating Habits and Adolescent Health – LONCAAFS.
To obtain data on food consumption, a 24-h recall survey was conducted; a second 24-h recall was applied to 30 % of the sample in all waves. Dietary patterns were identified by exploratory factor analysis using principal components. BMI Z-score was determined according to the recommendation of the WHO, based on the BMI for age and sex. Socio-economic data, sedentary behaviour and physical activity level were obtained. Associations between BMI Z-score and dietary patterns and between BMI Z-score and variables of interest were determined using generalised estimating equations.
Totally, 1431 adolescents were assessed in 2014, 1178 in 2015, 959 in 2016 and 773 in 2017, belonging to the public schools of João Pessoa, Northeast Brazil.
Three dietary patterns were identified throughout the study: ‘traditional’, ‘snacks’ and ‘Western’. The ‘Western’ dietary pattern was positively associated with BMI Z-score (β = 0·025; 95 % CI 0·002, 0·048), regardless of sex and physical activity level, prospectively.
A dietary pattern composed of foods with high energy density, high fat and sugars, and low fibre influences the BMI Z-score of adolescents over time.
Sex selection through sperm sorting offers advantages in regards selection pressure in high-producing livestock. However, the sex-sorting process results in sperm membrane and DNA damage that ultimately decrease fertility. We hypothesized that given the role of protamines in DNA packaging, protamine deficiency could account, at least partially, for the DNA damage observed following sperm sex sorting. To test this, we compared protamine status between unsexed and sexed spermatozoa from two bulls using the fluorochrome chromomycin A3 (CMA3) and flow cytometry. Then, we assessed embryo development following in vitro fertilization (IVF) using the same sperm treatments. Overall, sperm protamination was not different between sexed and unsexed semen. However, one of the two bulls displayed higher rates of protamine deficiency for both unsexed and sexed semen (P < 0.05). Moreover, unsexed semen from this bull yielded lower blastocyst (P < 0.05) and blastocyst hatching rates than unsexed sperm from the other bull. CMA3-positive staining was negatively correlated with cleavage (R2 85.1, P = 0.003) and blastocyst hatching (R2 87.6, P = 0.006) rates in unsexed semen. In conclusion, while the sex-sorting process had no effect on sperm protamine content, we observed a bull effect for sperm protamination, which correlated to embryo development rates following IVF.
To develop and validate protocols for photographed food record directed to visually impaired people.
Photographic techniques were established for capturing food images using a smartphone, and written protocols were defined. Thereafter, visually impaired people made photographic records of three standardised meals (breakfast, lunch/dinner, and snack) following the previously developed protocols. These photographs were then evaluated by a panel of experts (nutritionists and photographer) to indicate whether the framing, focus and angle were suitable to identify the food type, food amount and portion size. Agreement between the experts was assessed using Fleiss’ Kappa.
Natal, the capital of Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil.
Visually impaired people (n 40); nutritionists (n 2); professional photographer (n 1).
Both protocols obtained a high proportion of satisfactory photos for all the items in the three dimensions investigated. When overall quality was assessed, the experts’ agreement was a substantial that through the images it would be possible to identify the food type and portion size, both for Frontal Photos (k = 0·70 and k = 0·62, respectively) and Aerial Photos (k = 0·68 and k = 0·70, respectively). The degree of agreement that the photos presented a satisfactory global quality was moderate for the Frontal Photo (k = 0·43) and substantial for the Aerial Photo (k = 0·64). Participants who frequently used smartphone-type cell phones obtained better quality images for all these attributes for both protocols.
The protocols for photographed food record developed for visually impaired people in this study are feasible and present themselves as an alternative strategy to qualitatively assess their dietary intake.
This survey describes the recent advances in the construction of Markov partitions for non-uniformly hyperbolic systems. One important feature of this development comes from a finer theory of non-uniformly hyperbolic systems, which we also describe. The Markov partition defines a symbolic extension that is finite-to-one and onto a non-uniformly hyperbolic locus, and this provides dynamical and statistical consequences such as estimates on the number of closed orbits and properties of equilibrium measures. The class of systems includes diffeomorphisms, flows, and maps with singularities.
Subclinical atherosclerosis in childhood can be evaluated by carotid intima-media thickness, which is considered a surrogate marker for atherosclerotic disease in adulthood. The aims of this study were to evaluate carotid intima-media thickness and, to investigate associated factors.
Cross-sectional study with children and adolescents with congenital heart disease (CHD). Socio-demographic and clinical characteristics were assessed. Subclinical atherosclerosis was evaluated by carotid intima-media thickness. Cardiovascular risk factors, such as physical activity, screen time, passive smoke, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, waist circumference, dietary intake, lipid parameters, glycaemia, and C-reactive protein, were also assessed. Factors associated with carotid intima-media thickness were analysed using multiple logistic regression.
The mean carotid intima-media thickness was 0.518 mm and 46.7% had subclinical atherosclerosis (carotid intima-media thickness ≥ 97th percentile). After adjusting for confounding factors, cyanotic CHD (odds ratio: 0.40; 95% confidence interval: 0.20; 0.78), cardiac surgery (odds ratio: 3.17; 95% confidence interval: 1.35; 7.48), and be hospitalised to treat infections (odds ratio: 1.92; 95% confidence interval: 1.04; 3.54) were associated with subclinical atherosclerosis.
Clinical characteristics related to CHD were associated with subclinical atherosclerosis. This finding suggests that the presence of CHD itself is a risk factor for subclinical atherosclerosis. Therefore, the screen and control of modifiable cardiovascular risk factors should be made early and intensively to prevent atherosclerosis.
This study aimed to analyse the spatial–temporal distribution of COVID-19 mortality in Sergipe, Northeast, Brazil. It was an ecological study utilising spatiotemporal analysis techniques that included all deaths confirmed by COVID-19 in Sergipe, from 2 April to 14 June 2020. Mortality rates were calculated per 100 000 inhabitants and the temporal trends were analysed using a segmented log-linear model. For spatial analysis, the Kernel estimator was used and the crude mortality rates were smoothed by the empirical Bayesian method. The space–time prospective scan statistics applied the Poisson's probability distribution model. There were 391 COVID-19 registered deaths, with the majority among ⩾60 years old (62%) and males (53%). The most prevalent comorbidities were hypertension (40%), diabetes (31%) and cardiovascular disease (15%). An increasing mortality trend across the state was observed, with a higher increase in the countryside. An active spatiotemporal cluster of mortality comprising the metropolitan area and neighbouring cities was identified. The trend of COVID-19 mortality in Sergipe was increasing and the spatial distribution of deaths was heterogeneous with progression towards the countryside. Therefore, the use of spatial analysis techniques may contribute to surveillance and control of COVID-19 pandemic.
The aim of this study was to evaluate the impact of the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet on glycaemic control and consumption of processed (PF) and ultraprocessed (UPF) foods in pregnant women with pre-gestational diabetes mellitus (PGDM). This is a randomised, controlled, single-blind clinical trial with forty-nine adult women with PGDM, followed at a public maternity hospital in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The control group (CG) received a standard diet consisting of 45–55 % of the total energy intake of carbohydrates, 15–20 % of proteins and 25–30 % of lipids. The DASH group (DG) received an adapted DASH diet, which did not differ from the standard diet in the percentage of macronutrients, but had higher contents of fibre, unsaturated fats and minerals such as Ca, Mg and K; and lower contents of Na and saturated fats than the standard diet. In the analysis by protocol, the DG presented a higher incidence of glycaemic control after 12 weeks of intervention (57·1 v. 8·3 %, P = 0·01, moderate effect size) and a lower mean consumption of UPF (−9·9 %, P = 0·01) compared with the CG. There was no statistically significant difference in fasting and postprandial blood glucose concentrations, or in the consumption of PF between the groups (P > 0·05). The DASH diet may be a strategy for glycaemic control in pregnant women with PGDM, favouring the adoption of a nutritionally adequate diet with lower consumption of UPF. Further studies are needed to investigate the effect of the DASH diet on glycaemic profile, and maternal and perinatal outcomes in women with PGDM.
To investigate the shifts and factors associated with different scenarios resulting from the prevalence of child stunting and overweight in Brazilian municipalities.
This is an ecological study using municipality-level panel data of stunting and overweight prevalence and socio-economic characteristics from 2008 to 2014. The municipalities were classified according to the WHO-UNICEF prevalence thresholds for stunting and overweight and were categorised into four nutritional scenarios: no burden (prevalence of stunting < 20 % and overweight < 10 %), stunting burden (prevalence of stunting ≥ 20 % and overweight < 10 %), overweight burden (prevalence of stunting < 20 % and overweight ≥ 10 %) and double burden (prevalence of stunting ≥ 20 % and overweight ≥ 10 %).
Totally, 4443 Brazilian municipalities.
Aggregated data of children under 5 years old enrolled in the Brazil’s conditional cash transfer programme (Bolsa Família).
A mean reduction from 14·2 % to 12·7 % in the prevalence of stunting and an increase from 17·2 % to 18·4 % in the prevalence of overweight were observed. The predominant scenarios were overweight burden and double burden. The odds of both scenarios increased with higher gross domestic product (GDP) per capita and decreased with higher unemployment rates. Stunting and double burden decreased with higher expected years of schooling, and stunting burden increased with household crowding.
Our findings indicate an advanced nutrition transition stage in Brazil, associated mainly with municipal GDP per capita growth, which has contributed to increasing the burden of overweight alone or coexisting with stunting (double burden) among children in the most socio-economically vulnerable strata of the population.