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Sustainability of cereal-based cropping systems remains crucial for food security in South Asia. However, productivity of cereal–cereal rotations has declined in the long run, demonstrating the need for a sustainable alternative. Base crop, that is, common crop in different crop rotations, productivity could be used as a sustainability indicator for the assessment of different long-term crop rotations. This study aimed to evaluate the impact of grain legume inclusion in lowland rice–wheat (R-W) and upland maize–wheat (M-W) rotation on system’s base crop (rice in lowland and wheat in upland crop rotations) productivity and sustainability and also in soil fertility. Mung bean (April–May) inclusion in R-W rotation increased rice grain yield by 10–14%. In upland, mung bean inclusion in M-W rotation increased wheat grain yield by 5–11%. Replacing wheat with chickpea in R-W rotation increased rice grain yield by 5–8%. Increased base crop productivity in legume inclusive rotations was attributed to significant improvement in panicle (rice) or spike (wheat) attributes. Increased soil organic carbon and available nitrogen and phosphorus in the legume inclusive rotations significantly influenced the base crop productivity in both the production systems. Among the crop rotations, R-W-Mb (in lowland) and M-W-Mb (in upland) rotations had the highest system productivity and net return. Therefore, intensification/diversification of cereal–cereal rotations with grain legume could improve soil fertility and sustain crop productivity.
In this article, we investigate the chronology of a large parallel-walled mudbrick structure at the site of Pachamta in Rajasthan, India. Pachamta is larger than the contemporaneous Harappan site of Kalibangan and part of a society collectively known as the Ahar Culture. Recent excavations at Pachamta provided an opportunity to elaborate on the available dates for this society and to investigate the chronology of an enigmatic parallel-walled structure. The chronology and function of such prominent structures remains murky, although scholars have suggested that these buildings served as public storage because they resemble the granary at Harappa. Through excavation, our team collected data for assessing the Pachamta parallel-walled structure including construction methods, process of abandonment, and associated dates. The thirteen 14C assays from the site and an associated phase and sequence model performed in OxCal 4.3 demonstrate that the building was constructed, used, and abandoned in a relatively brief period. If parallel-walled structures are storage buildings, then expansion of the building may indicate prosperity or surplus, while abandonment may indicate an end to abundance or a shift in resource management. Carefully dating the structure allows us to investigate the timing of social processes including political and economic shifts within the settlement.
We aimed to provide comprehensive estimates of laboratory-confirmed respiratory syncytial virus (RSV)-associated hospitalisations. Between 2012 and 2015, active surveillance of acute respiratory infection (ARI) hospitalisations during winter seasons was used to estimate the seasonal incidence of laboratory-confirmed RSV hospitalisations in children aged <5 years in Auckland, New Zealand (NZ). Incidence rates were estimated by fine age group, ethnicity and socio-economic status (SES) strata. Additionally, RSV disease estimates determined through active surveillance were compared to rates estimated from hospital discharge codes. There were 5309 ARI hospitalisations among children during the study period, of which 3923 (73.9%) were tested for RSV and 1597 (40.7%) were RSV-positive. The seasonal incidence of RSV-associated ARI hospitalisations, once corrected for non-testing, was 6.1 (95% confidence intervals 5.8–6.4) per 1000 children <5 years old. The highest incidence was among children aged <3 months. Being of indigenous Māori or Pacific ethnicity or living in a neighbourhood with low SES independently increased the risk of an RSV-associated hospitalisation. RSV hospital discharge codes had a sensitivity of 71% for identifying laboratory-confirmed RSV cases. RSV infection is a leading cause of hospitalisation among children in NZ, with significant disparities by ethnicity and SES. Our findings highlight the need for effective RSV vaccines and therapies.
It is known that 12C beam transmission through the accelerator decreases at high beam currents. This effect depends on machine design and varies across different types of AMS instruments. For beam currents of about 100 μA, the effect is small on the 500 kV tandem CAMS unit, whereas beam saturation is observed for similar high beam currents on the 250 kV SSAMS unit. While this effect is very evident for high 12C beam currents, we have also observed that even the 13C beam is found to suffer modest transmission loss with beam current. As a result, the 13C/12C ratio does not remain constant with beam current. By correcting for the effects of 12C beam saturation and decreased 13C transmission, we have obtained online δ13C values that are more accurate and precise at moderately high beam currents for SSAMS.
We present a method for predicting forces on a plough – modelled as a flat, rigid plate inclined in the direction of motion – as it moves through a granular bed. Our method combines coarse, but representative, discrete element (DE) simulations with continuum mechanics. We first homogenize the kinematic information obtained from DE simulations to obtain a continuum strain field. The strain field is then combined with an appropriate continuum constitutive law for the granular material being ploughed and linear momentum balance to obtain forces acting on the plough. Our method has the advantage that it does not require (i) detailed DE simulations nor (ii) extensive calibration of grain parameters to match experiments which, in turn, requires significant effort and may be system dependent. Both (i) and (ii) are necessary if forces are to be estimated directly from simulations. We confirm the effectiveness of our approach by comparing our predictions with results from calibrated DE simulations and experiments.
This is a copy of the slides presented at the meeting but not formally written up for the volume.
Nanomedicine encompasses a vast area of biomedical research, from the development of new generation of contrast agents for diagnostic imaging to synthesizing targeted delivery vehicles of therapeutic drugs. This talk will highlight the use of multifunctional nanoparticles with combined imaging, diagnostic and therapeutic functions for nanomedicine. In our Institute we are developing new optical nanoprobes for bioimaging. They include functionalized quantum dots, aggregation-enhanced two photon dyes as well as nanocomposite nanoparticles with combined optical, magnetic, plasmonic and PET imaging capabilities. The goal is to provide targeting nanoprobes for early detection of diseases as well as for real time monitoring of a disease progression or the progress of a therapy. The organically modified silica (ORMOSIL) nanoparticles have been developed as a new-generation drug carrier for photodynamic therapy (PDT) of cancer, as well as for an efficient non-viral gene delivery, capable of transfecting neuronal cells in vivo with superior efficacy over viral vectors.
This is a copy of the slides presented at the meeting but not formally written up for the volume.
Proteomics based clinical diagnostics systems utilize the principle of protein identification as a means of biomarker profiling for disease diagnosis. The current standardized immunoassay techniques such as Enzyme linked Immunosorbent Assays (ELISA) are based on the fluorescent detection of the antibody (Ab)-antigen (Ag) binding event. These techniques are expensive; time consuming requiring a large sample volume. We present here two electrical immunoassay techniques that can potentially used for the rapid, multiplexed diagnosis of proteins for disease identification. The first technique involves the use of nanoporous templates in conjunction with microfabricated platforms with metallic base electrodes resulting In the formation of a “nanowell” assay system that is analogous to the micro titer well plate system. The detection of the formation of binding complex is achieved by capacitive measurement techniques. The dynamic range and the calibration of the device has been performed with respective to the current gold standard in proteomics. The second technique involves the use of microscale carriers to transport ab’s to sensing sites on microfabricated base platforms. The binding of the Ag’s to the Ab’s coupled to the carriers’ results in measurable voltage changes that are recorded in a real time manner. The calibration and the dynamic range of this device has also been determined. Both these techniques demonstrate potential as early diagnostic devices and their performance in detection of clinically relevant proteins is demonstrated.
With the latest configuration, the Ti:Sa laser system ARCTURUS (Düsseldorf University, Germany) operates with a double-chirped pulse amplification (CPA) architecture delivering pulses with an energy of 7 J before compression in each of the two high-power beams. By the implementation of a plasma mirror system, the intrinsic laser contrast is enhanced up to
on a time scale of hundreds of picoseconds, before the main peak. The laser system has been used in various configurations for advanced experiments and different studies have been carried out employing the high-power laser beams as a single, high-intensity interaction beam (
), in dual- and multi-beam configurations or in a pump–probe arrangement.
Process engineering industries are now facing growing economic pressure and societies' demands to improve their production technologies and equipment, making them more efficient and environmentally friendly. However unexpected additional technical and ecological drawbacks may appear as negative side effects of the new environmentally-friendly technologies. Thus, in their efforts to intensify upstream and downstream processes, industrial companies require a systematic aid to avoid compromising of ecological impact. The paper conceptualises a comprehensive approach for eco-innovation and eco- design in process engineering. The approach combines the advantages of Process Intensification as Knowledge-Based Engineering (KBE), inventive tools of Knowledge-Based Innovation (KBI), and main principles and best-practices of Eco-Design and Sustainable Manufacturing. It includes a correlation matrix for identification of eco-engineering contradictions and a process mapping technique for problem definition, database of Process Intensification methods and equipment, as well as a set of strongest inventive operators for eco-ideation.
We conduct direct numerical simulations (DNS) of the Cahn–Hilliard–Navier–Stokes (CHNS) equations to investigate the statistical properties of a turbulent phase-separating symmetric binary-fluid mixture. Turbulence causes an arrest of the phase separation which leads to the formation of a statistically steady emulsion. We characterise turbulent velocity fluctuations in an emulsion for different values of the Reynolds number and the Weber number. Our scale-by-scale kinetic energy budget analysis shows that the interfacial terms in the CHNS equations provide an alternative route for the kinetic energy transfer. By studying the probability distribution function (p.d.f.) of the energy dissipation rate, the vorticity magnitude and the joint-p.d.f. of the velocity-gradient invariants we show that the statistics of the turbulent fluctuations do not change with the Weber number.
The extrinsic indentation size effect (ISE) is utilized to analyze the depth-dependent hardness for Berkovich indentation of non-uniform dislocation distributions with one and two dimensional deformation gradients and is then extended to indentation results at grain boundaries. The role of the Berkovich pyramid orientation and placement relative to the grain boundary on extrinsic ISE is considered in terms of slip transmission at yield and plastic incompatibility during post-yield deformation. The results are interpreted using a local dislocation hardening mechanism originally proposed by Ashby, combined with the Hall–Petch equation. The Hall–Petch coefficient determined from the extrinsic ISE of the grain boundary is found to be consistent with the published values for pure Fe and mild steel. A simple, linear continuum strain gradient plasticity model is used to further analyze the results to include contributions from a non-uniform distribution in plastic strain and dislocation density.
We report three brothers born to consanguineous parents of Syrian descent, with a homozygous novel c.324G>A (p.W108*) mutation in PTRH2 that encodes peptidyl-tRNA hydrolase 2, causing infantile-onset multisystem neurologic, endocrine, and pancreatic disease (IMNEPD). We describe the core clinical features of postnatal microcephaly, motor and language delay with regression, ataxia, and hearing loss. Additional features include epileptic seizures, pancreatic insufficiency, and peripheral neuropathy. Clinical phenotyping enabled a targeted approach to the investigation and identification of a novel homozygous nonsense mutation in PTRH2, c.324G>A (p.W108*). We compare our patients with those recently described and review the current literature for IMNEPD.
The current paper describes methods of evaluating dietary habits of Sri Lankan adolescents based on the Diet Quality Index–International (DQI-I), which has been used in multiple international studies to describe dietary variety, moderation, adequacy and balance. The paper describes the method for calculating DQI-I scores and examines associations between DQI-I scores and dietary intake, and between DQI-I scores and sociodemographic factors.
The study followed a three-stage cluster randomised sampling method. Dietary intake was collected using a validated FFQ. Estimated micronutrient intakes and number of servings consumed were described according to DQI-I quartiles. DQI-I scores were tabulated according to sociodemographic characteristics. Multilevel modelling was used to examine associations between sociodemographic characteristics and DQI-I scores.
Secondary schools in rural Sri Lanka.
Adolescents (n 1300) aged 12–18 years attending secondary school in rural Sri Lanka.
DQI-I scores increased with consumption of fat (% energy), cholesterol (mg/d), energy (kJ/d), protein (% energy), Na (mg), dietary fibre (g), Fe (mg) and Ca (mg), but decreased according to percentage of energy coming from carbohydrates. DQI-I scores were significantly lower among females and students with lower levels of maternal education.
Policies are needed to increase the availability and affordability of nutrient-rich foods such as fruits, vegetables and high-protein foods, particularly to students from lower socio-economic backgrounds. Significant differences in diet quality according to sex, socio-economic status and district suggest there is potential for targeted interventions that aim to increase access to affordable, nutrient-rich foods among these groups.
Reducing potentially inappropriate medications (PIMs) in older adults is an area of sustained interest for many clinicians and researchers across the globe, as PIMs contribute to a significant burden of morbidity and mortality in the aging population. The prevalence of PIMs is a pervasive problem despite the presence of several explicit and implicit criteria for reducing PIMs in older adults, the most common being the Beers criteria, the Screening Tool of Older Persons’ potentially inappropriate Prescriptions/Screening Tool to Alert doctors to the Right Treatment (STOPP/START) criteria, and several country-specific criteria. This narrative review aims to discuss the frequently used published criteria for reducing PIMs, and elucidates the role of certain measures, especially de-prescribing, to optimise medication prescription in older adults. Electronic databases were searched using keywords and MeSH terms. The numerous available criteria have their specific advantages and drawbacks. De-prescribing, an initiative to reduce the use of PIMs, has gained significant importance in improving appropriate prescribing practices. De-prescribing is a methodical approach to gradually stopping inappropriate medications judiciously for each patient and simultaneously monitoring the patient carefully for the onset of adverse events or rebound symptoms. A combined caregiver–patient-centred approach encourages the collaboration between prescribers and pharmacists to reduce PIMs in older adults.
A novel series of nanocrystalline AlCuCrFeMnWx (x = 0, 0.05, 0.1, 0.5) high-entropy alloys (HEAs) were synthesized by mechanical alloying followed by spark plasma sintering. The phase evolution of the current HEAs was studied using X-ray diffraction (XRD), transmission electron microscopy, and selected area electron diffraction. The XRD of the AlCuCrFeMn sintered HEA shows evolution of ordered B2 phase (AlFe type), sigma phase (Cr rich), and FeMn phase. AlCuCrFeMnWx (x = 0.05, 0.1, 0.5 mol) shows formation of ordered B2 phases, sigma phases, FeMn phases, and BCC phases. Micro-hardness of the AlCuCrFeMnWx samples was measured by Vickers microindentation and the maximum value observed is 780 ± 12 HV. As the tungsten content increases, the fracture strength under compression increases from 1010 to 1510 MPa. Thermodynamic parameters of present alloys confirm the crystalline phase formation, and finally structure–property relationship was proposed by conventional strengthening mechanisms.
To assess the prevalence and determinants of food insecurity among people living with HIV (PLWH) in Pune, India and its association with biomarkers known to confer increased risks of morbidity and mortality in this population.
Cross-sectional analysis assessing food insecurity using the standardized Household Food Insecurity Access Scale. Participants were dichotomized into two groups: food insecure and food secure. Logistic regression models were used to assess associations between socio-economic, demographic, clinical, biochemical factors and food insecurity.
Antiretroviral therapy (ART) centre of Byramjee Jeejeebhoy Government Medical College and Sassoon General Hospitals (BJGMC–SGH), Pune, a large publicly funded tertiary and teaching hospital in western India.
Adult (≥18 years) PLWH attending the ART centre between September 2015 and May 2016 who had received ART for either ≤7d (ART-naïve) or ≥1 year (ART-experienced).
Food insecurity was reported by 40 % of 483 participants. Independent risk factors (adjusted OR; 95 % CI) included monthly family income <INR 5000 (~70 USD; 13·2; CI 5·4, 32·2) and consuming ≥4 non-vegetarian meals per week (4·7; 1·9, 11·9). High-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) ≥0·33 mg/dl (1·6; 1·04, 2·6) and d-dimer levels 0·19–0·31 µg/ml (1·6; 1·01, 2·6) and ≥0·32 µg/ml (1·9; 1·2, 3·2) were also associated with food insecurity.
More than a third of the study participants were food insecure. Furthermore, higher hs-CRP and d-dimer levels were associated with food insecurity. Prospective studies are required to understand the relationship between food insecurity, hs-CRP and d-dimer better.
The Hindu Kush Himalayan (HKH) region harbours some of the richest and most diverse ecosystems on the planet that are now facing substantial threats through changes in climate, land use and human population growth, with serious consequences for the biodiversity in this mountainous region. In this paper we evaluated the effects of climate change on the distribution of the tripartite epiphytic macrolichen Lobaria pindarensis, considered to be endemic to the Himalayas. To predict the current and future distribution of this species we applied the Random Forest modelling algorithm and climatic variables with a post-processing of projected distributions using a map of habitat types in the study region. We calibrated models based on 1397 species presences within an altitudinal range of 2036–4000 m and extrapolated them according to two IPCC scenarios of climate change (RCP 2·6 and RCP 8·5). Based on the results of ensemble modelling, two new localities where L. pindarensis might potentially occur were predicted. Our simulations predicted a range expansion of this epiphytic lichen to the north-east and to higher altitudes in response to climate change, although the species’ low dispersal abilities and the local availability of trees as a substratum will considerably limit latitudinal and altitudinal shifts. By contrast, assuming the species can migrate to previously unoccupied areas, and depending on different future climate scenarios, our models forecasted a habitat loss of 30–70% for L. pindarensis. The main reason for the simulated habitat loss is the expected increase in mean annual temperature (by 1·5–3·7 °C) and total annual precipitation (by 56–125 mm). Our results contribute further evidence for the high sensitivity of tripartite macrolichens, especially those from mountain areas, to climate change and particularly emphasize the vulnerability of L. pindarensis. Thus, we stress the need to develop and formulate conservation measures and strategies for the protection of this endemic species in the Hindu Kush Himalayan region.
In the present study, hot deformation behavior of a FCC high-entropy alloy CoCuFeMnNi has been investigated to explore the stress–strain response for a wide range of temperatures and strain rates. The deformation response has been examined by plotting a processing map and examining the evolution of microstructure and texture in each of the temperature–strain rate domain. Hot compression tests were carried out in the temperature range 850–1050 °C at strain rates varying from 0.001 s−1 to 10 s−1. Stress–strain curves indicate characteristic softening behavior due to dynamic recrystallization (DRX). DRX has been observed along grain boundaries, shear bands, as well as in the interior of deformed grains. The size of dynamically recrystallized grains shows a strong dependence on deformation temperature and increases with temperature. A high degree of twin formation takes place in the DRX grains evolved inside the shear bands, and the extent of twinning decreases at high temperatures. The optimal processing window has been estimated based on strain rate sensitivity and has been validated with detailed analyses of microstructure and texture. The best region for thermo-mechanical processing has been identified as in the temperature range 850–950 °C at strain rate 10−1 s−1.