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Aim of the current study is to investigate the associations between daily levels of air pollutants (particulate matter, ozone, carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide) and daily admissions for mental disorders to the emergency department of two general hospitals in Umbria region (Italy).
We collected data about daily admissions to psychiatric emergency services of two general hospitals, air pollutants' levels and meteorological data for the time period 1 January 2015 until 31 December 2016. We assessed the impact of an increase in air pollutants on the number of daily admissions using a time-series econometric framework.
A total of 1860 emergency department admissions for mental disorders were identified. We observed a statistically significant impact of ozone levels on daily admissions. The estimated coefficient of O3 is statistically significant at the 1% level. All other pollutants were not significantly associated with the number of daily admissions.
Short-term exposure to ozone may be associated with increased psychiatric emergency services admissions. Findings add to previous literature on existing evidence for air pollution to have an impact on mental health. Ozone may be considered a potential environmental risk factor for impaired mental health.
Suicide constitutes a public health problem that has a significant economic, social and psychological impact on a global scale. Recently, the American Psychological Association has indicated that suicide prevention should be a public health priority. Suicidal ideation appears as a key variable in suicide prevention. The objective of this research was to verify the adjustment of an explanatory model for suicidal ideation, which considers the effects of cognitive emotion regulation strategies, affectivity and hopelessness. An open mode on-line sample of 2,166 Argentine participants was used and a path analysis was carried out. The results make it possible to conclude that the model presents an optimal fit (χ2 = .10, p = .75, CFI = .99, RMSEA = .01) and predicts 42% of suicidal thoughts. The model proves to be invariant based on age and gender. In conclusion, there is an importance of reducing the use of automatic strategies, such as repetitive negative thoughts of ruminative type, and increasing the use of more controlled strategies, such as reinterpretation or planning.
Crispin Wright maintains that the architecture of perceptual justification is such that we can acquire justification for our perceptual beliefs only if we have antecedent justification for ruling out any sceptical alternative. Wright contends that this principle doesn't elicit scepticism, for we are non-evidentially entitled to accept the negation of any sceptical alternative. Sebastiano Moruzzi has challenged Wright's contention by arguing that since our non-evidential entitlements don't remove the epistemic risk of our perceptual beliefs, they don't actually enable us to acquire justification for these beliefs. In this paper I show that Wright's responses to Moruzzi are ineffective and that Moruzzi's argument is validated by probabilistic reasoning. I also suggest that Wright couldn't answer Moruzzi's challenge without weakening the support available for his conception of the architecture of perceptual justification.
The stratigraphic succession of the Mar Piccolo basin (Gulf of Taranto, Southern Italy) is well known in the scientific literature dealing with the last interglacial since its morphological evolution is influenced by sea level changes during Late Pleistocene-Holocene. The local Holocene sea level history is well known thanks to data deriving from peat and ash layers identified in different sediment cores obtained underwater and in coastal areas. Peat sediments are frequently interlayed with muddy-sand beds rich in Cerastoderma glaucum (Poiret, 1789). In the literature of the Mediterranean basin, AMS 14C dating on C. glaucum is widely used also in paleo-environmental reconstruction because this bivalve is considered an useful marker of sea level, though in lagoonal systems, large age offsets have been reported in different areas. Due to the availability of precise chronological and geochronological markers, in order to validate the use of C. glaucum in paleo sea level reconstruction, AMS 14C dating campaign was carried out on this bivalve deriving from several cores drilled in the Mar Piccolo basin and its nearby areas. Nineteen AMS 14C dating analyses carried out on C. glaucum sampled from different sediment cores up to a maximum of 30 m from the seafloor are presented. These results show an inconsistency of the ages in relation to a sea-level rise reconstruction model. The interpretation of the data was performed after the estimation of the local age offset calculated by analyzing six live samples, collected in 2017 in Mar Piccolo and in Croatia, and two samples dated to 1968–1969. The results show that for both the classes of samples (2017 and 1960s) an age offset ranging from 600 to 800 yr can be estimated.
The paper presents physical modeling, design, simulations, and experimentation on a novel Soft Underwater Artificial Skin (SUAS) used as tactile sensor. The SUAS functions as an electrostatic capacitive sensor, and it is composed of a hyperelastic membrane used as external cover and oil inside it used to compensate the marine pressure. Simulation has been performed studying and modeling the behavior of the external interface of the SUAS in contact with external concentrated loads in marine environment. Experiments on the external and internal components of the SUAS have been done using two different conductive layers in oil. A first prototype has been realized using a 3D printer. The results of the paper underline how the soft materials permit better adhesion of the conductive layer to the transducers of the SUAS obtaining higher capacitance. The results here presented confirmed the first hypotheses presented in a last work and opened new ways in the large-scale underwater tactile sensor design and development. The investigations are performed in collaboration with a national Italian project named MARIS, regarding the possible extension to the underwater field of the technologies developed within the European project ROBOSKIN.
Radiocarbon (14C) is one of the key radionuclides for the performance and safety assessment of a radioactive waste disposal, due to its high activity concentration in waste materials from the nuclear cycle and to its mobility. The measurement of the 14C content in spent ion exchange resins from nuclear reactors is important for the safety assessment of the disposal concept and for the choice of the appropriate treatment/disposal method. Ion exchange resins are commonly used in nuclear reactors as filters for the purification of process liquids or wastes streams and they retain molecules containing radioactive isotopes, among which is 14C. Their efficiency, both as filters and as waste containers, is strictly connected with the morphology. The preservation of spherical shape upon aging is one of the key parameters for their quality assessment and for the evaluation of the potential release of 14C during storage conditions. In this study, the change in IERs morphology during storage periods has been investigated in order to verify correlation with 14C release. Both brand new and aged specimens have been studied in order to assess the quality of the resins after 10 yr of storage and to contribute to the understanding of 14C release mechanisms.
There is increasing evidence for multiple pathways in the development of callous-unemotional (CU) features, including primary and secondary profiles. Understanding affect regulation strategies among variants may provide further insight to the development and treatment of CU features. This study evaluated whether profiles of CU features could be identified within a clinical sample of youth using measures of affect dysregulation, affect suppression, anxiety, and maltreatment. We also examined whether these profiles were consistent across gender. Participants (N = 418; 56.7% female) ranged in age from 12 to 19 years (M = 15.04, SD = 1.85) and were drawn from a clinical sample. Latent profile analysis (LPA) was conducted using five indicators, including affect regulation, suppression, anxiety, CU features, and maltreatment. The best fitting model, a four-profile solution, included a low (low CU/dysregulation), anxious (low CU/high dysregulation), primary CU (high CU/low dysregulation), and secondary CU profile (high CU/dysregulation/maltreatment). LPAs found the same four-profile model when conducted separately for males and females. This is the first study to examine gender and include affect regulation strategies in the examination of primary and secondary profiles of CU.
The epidemic of prescription and non-prescription opioid misuse is of particular importance in pregnancy. The Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada currently recommends opioid replacement therapy with methadone or buprenorphine for opioid-dependent women during pregnancy. This vulnerable segment of the population has been shown to be at increased risk of blood-borne infectious diseases, nutritional insecurity and stress. The objective of this study was to describe an urban cohort of pregnant women on opioid replacement therapy and to evaluate potential effects on the fetus. A retrospective chart review of all women on opioid replacement therapy and their infants who delivered at The Ottawa Hospital General and Civic campuses between January 1, 2013 and March 24, 2017 was conducted. Data were collected on maternal characteristics, pregnancy outcomes, neonatal outcomes and corresponding placental pathology. Maternal comorbidities identified included high rates of infection, tobacco use and illicit substance use, as well as increased rates of placental abruption compared with national averages. Compared with national baseline averages, the mean neonatal birth weight was low, and the incidence of small for gestational age infants and congenital anomalies was high. The incidence of NAS was comparable with estimates from other studies of similar cohorts. Findings support existing literature that calls for a comprehensive interdisciplinary risk reduction approach including dietary, social, domestic, psychological and other supports to care for opioid-dependent women in pregnancy.
Zn deficiency and diarrhoea are prevalent and may coexist in children living in low-resource settings. Recently, a novel approach for delivering Zn via microbiologically treated, Zn-fortified water was shown to be effective in improving Zn status in West African schoolchildren. We assessed the effectiveness of Zn-fortified, microbiologically purified water delivered as a household intervention on Zn intake, status and morbidity in children aged 2–6 years from rural western Kenya.
Randomised controlled trial. Intervention included households assigned to water treatment device with (ZFW) or without (FW) Zn delivery capability
Rural households in Kisumu, western Kenya.
Children aged 2–6 years.
The ZFW group had higher dietary Zn intake compared with the FW group. ZFW contributed 36 and 31 % of daily requirements for absorbable Zn in children aged 2–3 and 4–6 years, respectively, in the ZFW group. Consumption of Zn-fortified water resulted in lower prevalence of reported illness (risk ratio; 95 % CI) in the ZFW group compared with the FW group: for cold with runny nose (0·91; 0·83, 0·99; P=0·034) and abdominal pain (0·70; 0·56, 0·89; P=0·003) in the intention-to-treat analysis and for diarrhoea (0·72; 0·53, 0·96; P=0·025) in the per-protocol analysis. We did not detect an effect of treatment on plasma Zn concentration.
Daily consumption of Zn-fortified, microbiologically treated water results in increased intake of absorbable dietary Zn and may help in preventing childhood infections in pre-school children in rural Africa.
This article provides an overview of the development of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies’ (IFRC) approach to migration and displacement. The focus of the IFRC and its member National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (National Societies) in this regard has traditionally been on refugees and other so-called “displaced persons” – that is, people who have been compelled to flee their place or country of origin and for this reason are deemed to be particularly vulnerable. However, this focus has been extended recently, in the course of the past decade, to cover all people who find themselves in a vulnerable situation in the context of migration. The IFRC Migration Policy, which was adopted in 2009, has offered much-needed guidance to National Societies in dealing with all migrants, including irregular migrants. However, it is argued that there is a need today – taking into consideration the increasing number of displaced people worldwide and the numerous contexts in which National Societies are dealing with refugees, internally displaced persons or cross-border disaster-displaced persons – to better understand the programmatic aspects that are specific to displacement compared with migration. This is a necessary condition in view of the development of more adequate and effective responses to the vulnerabilities and needs of migrants and displaced persons.
Zn status may affect fatty acid (FA) metabolism because it acts as a cofactor in FA desaturase and elongase enzymes. Zn supplementation affects the FA desaturases of Zn-deficient rats, but whether this occurs in humans is unclear. We evaluated the associations between baseline plasma Zn (PZn) concentration and plasma total phospholipid FA composition, as well as the effect of daily consumption of Zn-fortified water on FA status in Beninese children. A 20-week, double-blind randomised controlled trial was conducted in 186 school age children. The children were randomly assigned to receive a daily portion of Zn-fortified, filtered water delivering on average 2·8 mg Zn/d or non-fortified filtered water. Plasma total phospholipid FA composition was determined using capillary GLC and PZn concentrations by atomic absorption spectrometry. At baseline, PZn correlated positively with dihomo-γ-linolenic acid (DGLA, r 0·182; P=0·024) and the DGLA:linoleic acid (LA) ratio (r 0·293; P<0·000), and negatively with LA (r −0·211; P=0·009) and the arachidonic acid:DGLA ratio (r −0·170; P=0·036). With the intervention, Zn fortification increased nervonic acid (B: 0·109; 95 % CI 0·001, 0·218) in all children (n 186) and more so in children who were Zn-deficient (n 60) at baseline (B: 0·230; 95 % CI 0·023, 0·488). In conclusion, in this study, Zn-fortified filtered water prevented the reduction of nervonic acid composition in the plasma total phospholipids of children, and this effect was stronger in Zn-deficient children. Thus, Zn status may play an important role in FA desaturation and/or elongation.
The Hubble Source Catalog (HSC) combines lists of sources detected on images obtained with the WFPC2, ACS and WFC3 instruments aboard the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) and now available in the Hubble Legacy Archive. The catalogue contains time-domain information for about two million of its sources detected using the same instrument and filter on at least five HST visits. The Hubble Catalog of Variables (HCV) aims to identify HSC sources showing significant brightness variations. A magnitude-dependent threshold in the median absolute deviation of photometric measurements (an outlier-resistant measure of light-curve scatter) is adopted as the variability detection statistic. It is supplemented with a cut in χred2 that removes sources with large photometric errors. A pre-processing procedure involving bad image identification, outlier rejection and computation of local magnitude zero-point corrections is applied to the HSC light-curves before computing the variability detection statistics. About 52 000 HSC sources have been identified as candidate variables, among which 7,800 show variability in more than one filter. Visual inspection suggests that ∼70% of the candidates detected in multiple filters are true variables, while the remaining ∼30% are sources with aperture photometry corrupted by blending, imaging artefacts or image processing anomalies. The candidate variables have AB magnitudes in the range 15–27m, with a median of 22m. Among them are the stars in our own and nearby galaxies, and active galactic nuclei.
We examined the hypothesis that rumination time (RT) could serve as a useful predictor of various common diseases of high producing dairy cows and hence improve herd management and animal wellbeing. We measured the changes in rumination time (RT) in the days before the recording of diseases (specifically: mastitis, reproductive system diseases, locomotor system issues, and gastroenteric diseases). We built predictive models to assess the association between RT and these diseases, using the former as the outcome variable, and to study the effects of the latter on the former. The average Pseudo-R2 of the fitted models was moderate to low, and this could be due to the fact that RT is influenced by other additional factors which have a greater effect than the predictors used here. Although remaining in a moderate-to-low range, the average Pseudo-R2 of the models regarding locomotion issues and gastroenteric diseases was higher than the others, suggesting the greater effect of these diseases on RT. The results are encouraging, but further work is needed if these models are to become useful predictors.
Trypanosoma cruzi is exposed to oxidative stresses during its life cycle, and amongst the strategies employed by this parasite to deal with these situations sits a peculiar trypanothione-dependent antioxidant system. Remarkably, T. cruzi’s antioxidant repertoire does not include catalase. In an attempt to shed light on what are the reasons by which this parasite lacks this enzyme, a T. cruzi cell line stably expressing catalase showed an increased resistance to hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) when compared with wild-type cells. Interestingly, preconditioning carried out with low concentrations of H2O2 led untransfected parasites to be as much resistant to this oxidant as cells expressing catalase, but did not induce the same level of increased resistance in the latter ones. Also, presence of catalase decreased trypanothione reductase and increased superoxide dismutase levels in T. cruzi, resulting in higher levels of residual H2O2 after challenge with this oxidant. Although expression of catalase contributed to elevated proliferation rates of T. cruzi in Rhodnius prolixus, it failed to induce a significant increase of parasite virulence in mice. Altogether, these results indicate that the absence of a gene encoding catalase in T. cruzi has played an important role in allowing this parasite to develop a shrill capacity to sense and overcome oxidative stress.
The objective of this study was to investigate the relationship between temperature–humidity index (THI) and rumination time (RT) in order to possibly exploit it as a useful tool for animal welfare improvement. During summer 2015 (1 June to 31 August), data from an Italian Holstein dairy farm located in the North of Italy were collected along with environmental data (i.e. ambient temperature and relative humidity) recorded with a weather station installed inside the barn. Rumination data were collected through the Heatime® HR system (SCR Engineers Ltd., Hadarim, Netanya, Israel), an automatic system composed of a neck collar with a Tag that records the RT and activity of each cow. A significant negative correlation was observed between RT and THI. Mixed linear models were fitted, including animal and test day as random effects, and parity, milk production level and date of last calving as fixed effects. A statistically significant effect of THI on RT was identified, with RT decreasing as THI increased.
This poster illustrates the calibration procedure and the analysis pipeline developed for the helioseismology data acquired with the VAMOS (Velocity And Magnetic Observations of the Sun) instrument. The VAMOS, based on the MOF (Magneto-Optical Filter) technology, and its operation are discussed in detail elsewhere (Cacciani et al., 1997 and Moretti et al., 1997).
Food composition databases are essential for estimating nutrient intakes in food consumption surveys. The present study aimed to evaluate the Mali food composition database (TACAM) for assessing intakes of energy and selected nutrients at population level.
Weighed food records and duplicate portions of all foods consumed during one day were collected. Intakes of energy, protein, fat, available carbohydrates, dietary fibre, Ca, Fe, Zn and vitamin A were assessed by: (i) estimating the nutrient intake from weighed food records based on an adjusted TACAM (a-TACAM); and (ii) chemical analysis of the duplicate portions. Agreement between the two methods was determined using the Wilcoxon signed-rank test and Bland–Altman plots.
Apparently healthy non-pregnant, non-lactating women (n 36) aged 15–36 years.
Correlation coefficients between estimated and analysed values ranged from 0·38 to 0·61. At population level, mean estimated and analysed nutrient intakes differed significantly for carbohydrates (203·0 v. 243·5 g/d), Fe (9·9 v. 22·8 mg/d) and vitamin A (356 v. 246 µg retinol activity equivalents). At individual level, all estimated and analysed nutrient intakes differed significantly; the differences tended to increase with higher intakes.
The a-TACAM is sufficiently acceptable for measuring average intakes of macronutrients, Ca and Zn at population level in low-intake populations, but not for carbohydrate, vitamin A and Fe intakes, and nutrient densities.
The Hubble Catalog of Variables (HCV) is a 3 year ESA funded project that aims to develop a set of algorithms to identify variables among the sources included in the Hubble Source Catalog (HSC) and produce the HCV. We will process all HSC sources with more than a predefined number of measurements in a single filter/instrument combination and compute a range of lightcurve features to determine the variability status of each source. At the end of the project, the first release of the Hubble Catalog of Variables will be made available at the Mikulski Archive for Space Telescopes (MAST) and the ESA Science Archives. The variability detection pipeline will be implemented at the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) so that updated versions of the HCV may be created following the future releases of the HSC.
The number of elderly caregivers is increasing in the world. It is important to know the attitudes toward the elderly, because they can influence a range of behaviors. Our aim was to determine factors associated with attitudes toward the elderly in a sample of older carers.
Three hundred and thirteen elderly caregivers (75.4% women, mean age 69.7 ± 7.1) who cared for a dependent older person at home completed a cross-sectional household interview. In addition to the four domains of the Neri Scale to Assess Attitudes Toward the Elderly, participants were evaluated regarding the demographics, care recipient (CR) characteristics, functional and cognitive status, general health, life satisfaction, perceived stress, and depressive symptoms.
Overall, attitudes toward the elderly were neutral in this sample. More negative attitudes in some Neri Scale domains were associated with being older, living in an urban setting, taking more medications per day, caring for an elderly dependent in basic Activities of Daily Living (ADLs), being “more or less” satisfied with life, and having higher levels of perceived stress. There was a negative association between positive attitudes and educational level.
The results highlight the need for public policies to promote more positive attitudes toward aging and change negative stereotypes usually used to designate older people. These public policies can try to modify some predictors of negative attitudes, such as perceived stress, which was associated with all four domains of Neri Scale.
Fe fortification of centrally manufactured and frequently consumed condiments such as bouillon cubes could help prevent Fe deficiency in developing countries. However, Fe compounds that do not cause sensory changes in the fortified product, such as ferric pyrophosphate (FePP), exhibit low absorption in humans. Tetra sodium pyrophosphate (NaPP) can form soluble complexes with Fe, which could increase Fe bioavailability. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate Fe bioavailability from bouillon cubes fortified with either FePP only, FePP+NaPP, ferrous sulphate (FeSO4) only, or FeSO4+NaPP. We first conducted in vitro studies using a protocol of simulated digestion to assess the dialysable and ionic Fe, and the cellular ferritin response in a Caco-2 cell model. Second, Fe absorption from bouillon prepared from intrinsically labelled cubes (2·5 mg stable Fe isotopes/cube) was assessed in twenty-four Fe-deficient women, by measuring Fe incorporation into erythrocytes 2 weeks after consumption. Fe bioavailability in humans increased by 46 % (P<0·005) when comparing bouillons fortified with FePP only (4·4 %) and bouillons fortified with FePP+NaPP (6·4 %). Fe absorption from bouillons fortified with FeSO4 only and with FeSO4+NaPP was 33·8 and 27·8 %, respectively (NS). The outcome from the human study is in agreement with the dialysable Fe from the in vitro experiments. Our findings suggest that the addition of NaPP could be a promising strategy to increase Fe absorption from FePP-fortified bouillon cubes, and if confirmed by further research, for other fortified foods with complex food matrices as well.