To send content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about sending content to .
To send content items to your Kindle, first ensure firstname.lastname@example.org
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
Econophysics has been used to study a range of economic and financial systems. This book uses the econophysical perspective to focus on the income distributive dynamics of economic systems. It focuses on the empirical characterization and dynamics of income distribution and its related quantities from the epistemological and practical perspectives of contemporary physics. Several income distribution functions are presented which fit income data and results obtained by statistical physicists on the income distribution problem. The book discusses two separate research traditions: the statistical physics approach, and the approach based on non-linear trade cycle models of macroeconomic dynamics. Several models of distributive dynamics based on the latter approach are presented, connecting the studies by physicists on distributive dynamics with the recent literature by economists on income inequality. As econophysics is such an interdisciplinary field, this book will be of interest to physicists, economists, statisticians and applied mathematicians.
The demographic transition is a global event intensified during the last decades that represents population aging. Thus, the studies directed to the elderly 80 years of age or more with preserved cognitive functions (named SuperAgers) emerges as a possible path to full comprehension of the health of those aging with acceptable levels of functionality and independency.
To evaluate the cognitive performance of the elderly over 80 years old, associating the results to their educational level.
We evaluated 144 healthy elders with 80 years or more through the following cognitive tests Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE), Cambridge Cognitive Examination (CAMCOG), Clock Drawing Test (CDT), and Verbal Fluency Test (VF) and compared the tests’ scores with their educational level segmented in years of formal education, being the groups ILLITR (<1 year of schooling), 1TO4 (from 1 to 4 years of schooling), and 5MORE (>5 years of schooling).
There was positive influence of educational level on the cognitive tests’ score, which indicates higher cognitive reserve of the elderly with higher educational levels.
The functionality and independence of the so-called SuperAgers is determined by the cognitive reserve acquired throughout life, mainly developed by the years of formal education.
Population growth and rising incomes have led to increasing global demand for meat products. Meeting this demand without converting remaining natural ecosystems or further degrading ecosystems is one of the largest global sustainability challenges. A critical step to overcoming this challenge is to increase the productivity of livestock grazing systems, which occupy the largest land area of any type of agriculture globally. Integrated crop−livestock systems (iCL), which re-couple crop and livestock production at the farm scale, have been considered a promising strategy to tackle this challenge by restoring degraded pasturelands and providing supplemental nutrition to livestock. However, few studies have analyzed the economic viability of such systems, especially in Brazil, an important player in global food systems. This paper presents an economic analysis of iCL in Mato Grosso, Brazil, the largest grain and beef producer in the country, which spans the ecologically diverse Amazon, Cerrado and Pantanal biomes. We compare the economic performance of an integrated soybean/corn and beef cattle system to a continuous crop (soybean/corn) system and a continuous livestock (beef cattle) production system from 2005 to 2012. We use empirical case study data to characterize a ‘typical’ farm for each production system within the study region. We find that the integrated crop−livestock system has a higher annual net present value (NPV) per hectare (ha) than continuous cropping or livestock under a range of discount rates. However, under a scenario of substantially higher crop prices, the continuous cropping outperforms iCL. While iCL is not feasible in all regions of the Amazon and Cerrado, our results indicate that in places where the biophysical and market conditions are suitable for production, it could be a highly profitable way to intensify cattle production and potentially spare land for other uses, including conservation. Nevertheless, additional credit and technical support may be needed to overcome high upfront costs and informational barriers to increase iCL areas as a sustainable development strategy for agriculture in the Amazon and Cerrado regions.
Femoral vein access is the first choice for percutaneous atrial septal defect closure, and when it cannot be used due to anatomic reasons, the alternative sites should be considered, frequently increasing the complexity of the procedure. Here we report the case of a 3-year-old boy, with situs inversus and dextrocardia, electively referred for percutaneous closure of an ostium secundum atrial septal defect. During the procedure, agenesis of the infra-hepatic segment of the inferior caval vein was diagnosed, and no double inferior caval vein or right superior caval vein were identified by ultrasound or angiography. Therefore, we opted to perform the procedure through the left internal jugular vein, with fluoroscopy and transesophageal echocardiographic guidance. Catheters were navigated through a hydrophilic guidewire, and a Stiff guidewire was positioned in the left ventricle for better support. An Amplatzer septa occluder 19 was successfully deployed without major difficulties and the patient was discharged after 24 hours in good clinical condition. Percutaneous atrial septal defect closure through alternative access sites, especially in the presence of situs inversus, may pose significant challenges to the interventional team. In this case, the left internal jugular vein has shown to be a feasible option, allowing the navigation and manipulation of devices without complications. Provided the expertise of the interventional team, and awareness of the risks involved, alternative access sites can be successfully used for paediatric structural interventions.
Changes in cardiac autonomic regulation, expressed by increased sympathetic activity and decreased heart rate variability, have an important relationship with the onset of lethal cardiac phenomena. Therefore, we aimed to evaluate the cardiac autonomic behaviour in young people according to their level of physical activity. Through the International Physical Activity Questionnaire, 55 healthy young non-smokers with no history of previous diseases and whose parents did not suffer from metabolic syndrome were assessed and divided into groups: sedentary (n=12), insufficiently active (n=16), active (n=14), and very active (n=13). We collected respiratory rate, systolic and diastolic blood pressure at rest, and body mass index. Subjects remained supine at rest, and without mental stress for 15 minutes in a controlled environment. Using a cardiofrequency meter (Polar® RS800CX), data were analysed in the time domain, frequency domain, and detrended fluctuation analysis. For the sedentary group, the mean RR and rMSSD were significantly lower, and the insufficiently active group showed higher means, but significantly only for rMSSD. The insufficiently active group showed in the detrended fluctuation analysis that α2 was significantly lower compared with the sedentary, active, and very active groups. We conclude that young, healthy, sedentary individuals present an increased heart rate and that insufficiently active individuals present a decreased fractal correlation and increased parasympathetic activity.
The rocky shores of the north-east Atlantic have been long studied. Our focus is from Gibraltar to Norway plus the Azores and Iceland. Phylogeographic processes shape biogeographic patterns of biodiversity. Long-term and broadscale studies have shown the responses of biota to past climate fluctuations and more recent anthropogenic climate change. Inter- and intra-specific species interactions along sharp local environmental gradients shape distributions and community structure and hence ecosystem functioning. Shifts in domination by fucoids in shelter to barnacles/mussels in exposure are mediated by grazing by patellid limpets. Further south fucoids become increasingly rare, with species disappearing or restricted to estuarine refuges, caused by greater desiccation and grazing pressure. Mesoscale processes influence bottom-up nutrient forcing and larval supply, hence affecting species abundance and distribution, and can be proximate factors setting range edges (e.g., the English Channel, the Iberian Peninsula). Impacts of invasive non-native species are reviewed. Knowledge gaps such as the work on rockpools and host–parasite dynamics are also outlined.
Decision-making (DM) is a component of executive functioning. DM is essential to make proper decisions regarding important life and health issues. DM can be impaired in cognitive disorders among older adults, but current literature is scarce. The aim of this study was to evaluate the DM profile in participants with and without cognitive impairment.
Cross-sectional analysis of a cohort study on cognitive aging.
143 older adults.
University-based memory clinic.
Patients comprised three groups after inclusion and exclusion criteria: healthy controls (n=29), mild cognitive impairment (n=81) and dementia (n=33). Participants were evaluated using an extensive neuropsychological protocol. DM profile was evaluated by the Melbourne Decision Making Questionnaire. Multinomial logistic regression was used to evaluate associations between age, sex, educational level, estimated intelligence quotient (IQ), cognitive disorders, depressive or anxiety symptoms, and the DM profiles.
The most prevalent DM profile was the vigilant type, having a prevalence of 64.3%. The vigilant profile also predominated in all three groups. The multinomial logistic regression showed that the avoidance profile (i.e. buck-passing) was associated with a greater presence of dementia (p=0.046) and depressive symptoms (p=0.024), but with less anxious symptoms (p=0.047). The procrastination profile was also associated with depressive symptoms (p=0.048). Finally, the hypervigilant profile was associated with a lower pre-morbid IQ (p=0.007).
Older adults with cognitive impairment tended to make more unfavorable choices and have a more dysfunctional DM profile compared to healthy elders.
Human ascariasis is a neglected tropical disease of great relevance to public health and is considered the most frequent helminthiasis in poor regions. Accurately diagnosing this parasite has been challenging due to limitations of current diagnostic methods. Immunoglobulin Y (IgY) technology is a very effective alternative for the production of highly specific and profitable antibodies. This study aimed to produce and apply anti-Ascaris suum IgY antibodies in the immunodiagnosis of human ascariasis. Five immunizations comprising total saline extract from A. suum adult life forms were given at 14-day intervals to Gallus gallus domesticus hens of the Isa Brown line. Eggs and blood samples were collected weekly and fortnightly, respectively, to monitor the production of antibodies. The specificity of antibodies was confirmed by dot-blot, kinetic enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), avidity ELISA, immunoblotting and indirect immunofluorescence antibody tests. The application for disease diagnosis was performed through the detection of immune complexes in human serum samples by sandwich ELISA. Peaks of IgY anti-A. suum production occurred at weeks 6 and 8. IgY showed high avidity levels after the second dose of immunization, ranging from 64% to 93%, with a mean avidity index of 78.30%. Purified IgY recognized 12 bands of proteins from A. suum saline extract. Eggs, the uterine portion and cuticles of A. suum female adult are reactive in immunofluorescence. The detection of immune complexes showed diagnostic values of 80% sensitivity and 90% specificity. In conclusion, specific IgY have been shown to be a potential immunodiagnostic tool with promising future applications in human ascariasis.
With respect to De Dreu and Gross's article, we comment on the psychological functions for attack and defense, focusing on associations between individual differences in psychopathic personality traits and the behavioral patterns observed in attack-defense conflicts. We highlight the dimensional nature of psychopathy and formulate hypothetical associations between distinct traits, their different behavioral outcomes, and associated brain mechanisms.
We evaluated the effects of high-Ca fat-free milk v. low-Ca control diet on adiposity and on glycaemic control. Fourteen subjects with type 2 diabetes (aged 49·5 (sd 8·6) years, BMI 29·4 (sd 4·5) kg/m2, low habitual Ca consumption (<600 mg/d)) were included in this randomised, crossover clinical trial. Subjects participated in two 12-week experimental sessions (high-Ca fat-free milk (HC) or low-Ca control (LC)) separated by 8-week washout. Subjects daily consumed in the laboratory a breakfast shake containing 700 mg (HC) or 6·4 mg (LC) of Ca. Energy-restricted diets containing 800 mg of dietary Ca/d were prescribed. Dietary records data indicated the consumption of 1200 mg of Ca/d during HC and of 525 mg of Ca/d during LC. There was a greater reduction in body weight, body fat mass, waist circumference and waist:hip ratio after HC. Serum 25-hydoxyvitamin D and homeostatic model assessment-2 β-cell function (HOMA2-%B) increased, and serum uric acid, parathormone (PTH) and glycated Hb (HbA1c) concentrations reduced after HC. In addition, changes from baseline in terms of serum uric acid, glucose, HbA1c and PTH concentrations were lower, and those of HOMA2-%B, serum Ca and 25-hydoxyvitamin D were higher after the HC than after LC. The consumption of approximately three servings of fat-free milk and 1200 mg of dietary Ca/d enhanced weight loss, improved body composition and promoted glycaemic control in subjects with type 2 diabetes and low habitual Ca consumption (<600 mg/d).
Many school-based interventions for obesity prevention have been proposed with positive changes in behavior, but unsatisfactory results on weight change. The objective was to verify the effectiveness of a combined school and home-based obesity prevention program on excessive weight gain in adolescents. Teachers delivered the school-based primary prevention program to fifth and sixth graders (9 schools, 48 control classes, 49 intervention classes), which included encouraging healthy eating habits and physical activity. A subgroup of overweight or obese adolescents also received a home-based secondary prevention program delivered by community health professionals. Schools were randomized to intervention or control group. Intent-to-treat analysis used mixed models for repeated continuous measures and considered the cluster effect. The main outcomes were changes in body mass index (BMI) and percent body fat (%body fat) after one school-year of intervention and follow-up. Against our hypothesis, BMI increased more in the intervention group than in the control group (Δ=0.3kg/m2; p=0.05) with a greater decrease in %body fat among boys (Δ=-0.6%; p=0.03) in the control group. The intervention group increased physical activity by 12.5 minutes per week compared with the control group. Female adolescents in the intervention group ate healthier items more frequently than in the control group. The subgroup who received both the school and home interventions had an increase in %body fat than in the control group (Δ=0.89%; p=0.01). In this study, a behavioral change led to a small increased in physical activity and healthy eating habits but also to an overall increase in food intake.
One of the most debated topics in pig production is the need to study, understand and change the production system in order to improve nutrient efficiency, becoming more environmentally friendly. The nitrogen excretion has highly deleterious effects on the environment, and it is necessary to develop tools that help to reduce the excretion of this compound without compromising productivity. Therefore, two models were generated to estimate the efficiency of weight gain in relation to excreted nitrogen in post-weaning piglets. Data for testing these models were obtained from previous master and PhD studies carried out at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, Animal Science Laboratory using piglets in the post-weaning phase with results for performance and digestibility. The database that was constructed was composed of raw data from 10 studies carried out between 2000 and 2016, on a total of 726 piglets weaned at ages between 17 and 28 days, and to which 62 different treatments were applied. An exploratory analysis of the data was done by evaluating scatter plots and histograms, and variables representing different treatments were used in a stepwise multiple linear regression analysis, with the F-test used as the selection criterion. Two models were generated that either considered the nitrogen retained or not, to estimate the ratio between weight gain and excreted nitrogen using generalized linear model procedure. The authors analyzed the behavior of each variable to evaluate whether the equation generated was biologically coherent. Weight gain, dry matter intake, nitrogen intake, metabolizable energy intake, retained nitrogen and urinary nitrogen were all significant (P<0.001) variables in model I, and in model II the variable fecal nitrogen was also included. The models had high coefficients of determination (R2 of model I and II were 0.9013 and 0.8271, respectively), and the nitrogen ingested variable was the one that most strongly influenced growth efficiency. When the retained nitrogen variable was removed from the model, there was a reduction in the fit of the equations. It was possible to conclude that both of the two models generated could be applied and the amount of nitrogen ingested had the greatest influence on growth efficiency related to nitrogen excretion.
To evaluate the psychometric properties of the Brazilian version of the Shame and Stigma Scale (SSS) in a sample of patients with head and neck cancers (HNC).
This is a validation study carried out in a Brazilian cancer hospital. Patients over 18 years old who knew about their HNC diagnosis were consecutively recruited, answering the SSS, the Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy (General and Head and Neck supplement) questionnaire, and the University of Washington Quality of Life Questionnaire. Internal consistency, test-retest procedure, convergent validity, and responsiveness analysis were the psychometric properties evaluated.
A total of 122 HNC patients were included. The SSS showed appropriate internal consistency (alphas ranging from 0.71 to 0.86), test-retest reliability (higher than 0.92 with exception of the “Regret domain”), and convergent validity. The responsiveness analysis with 38 patients was able to discriminate the scores before and after prosthetic procedures.
Significance of the Results
The Brazilian Portuguese version of the SSS may be considered a valid and reliable instrument for the evaluation of Brazilian patients with HNC. Future SSS validation studies are welcome in other developing countries in order to make cancer health providers aware of these negative feelings in their HNC patients.
The University of São Paulo Twin Panel (Painel USP de Gêmeos), based at the Institute of Psychology of the University of São Paulo, started formally in 2017. Our registry is new, but in only two years of formal existence, it comprises a volunteer sample of 4826 registered individuals (98% twins and 2% higher-order multiples), recruited at the University of São Paulo and by social media campaigns. Our main aim is to conduct and promote research with twins on psychological processes and behavior. The University of São Paulo is the largest higher education and research institution in South America, and the Painel USP de Gêmeos has great potential for fostering research on twin-related issues from a psychological perspective in Brazil and South America.
One of the most consumed pesticides in the world is glyphosate, the active ingredient in the herbicide ROUNDUP®. Studies demonstrate that glyphosate can act as an endocrine disruptor and that exposure to this substance at critical periods in the developmental period may program the fetus to induce reproductive damage in adulthood. Our hypothesis is that maternal exposure to glyphosate during pregnancy and lactation in mice will affect the development of male reproductive organs, impairing male fertility during adult life. Female mice consumed 0.5% glyphosate-ROUNDUP® in their drinking water [glyphosate-based herbicide (GBH) group] or filtered water [control (CTRL) group] from the fourth day of pregnancy until the end of the lactation period. Male F1 offspring were designated, according to their mother’s treatment, as CTRL-F1 and GBH-F1. Female mice that drank glyphosate displayed reduced body weight (BW) gain during gestation, but no alterations in litter size. Although GBH male F1 offspring did not exhibit modifications in BW, they demonstrated delayed testicular descent. Furthermore, at PND150, GBH-F1 mice presented a lower number of spermatozoa in the cauda epididymis and reduced epithelial height of the seminiferous epithelium. Notably, intratesticular testosterone concentrations were enhanced in GBH-F1 mice; we show that it is an effect associated with increased plasma and pituitary concentrations of luteinizing hormone. Therefore, data indicate that maternal exposure to glyphosate-ROUNDUP® during pregnancy and lactation may lead to decreased spermatogenesis and disruptions in hypothalamus–pituitary–testicular axis regulation in F1 offspring.
This is a copy of the slides presented at the meeting but not formally written up for the volume.
Recently, the telecommunication market experiences an explosion in the subscribers of emergent high-debit services which require bandwidth that exceeds the one provided by actual copper based access networks . To cope with these demands and keep competitive, great efforts have been done to develop access networks based on optical technology, such as passive all-optical networks due to their intrinsic low cost . Sol-gel processing is suitable for the development of organic-inorganic hybrid (OIH) materials for the production of functional integrated optic (IO) devices in a cost effective way. Urea cross-linked OIH show acceptable transparency, mechanical flexibility and thermal stability [3-6]. The control over the refractive index is achieved by zirconium (IV) n-propoxide (ZPO) doping stabilized with methacrylic acid (MA) [3-5]. The combination in a single material of urea cross-linked OIH and ZPO allowed the preparation of UV written low losses planar waveguides  and low rugosity diffraction grating [4,5]. It has been demonstrated that MA acts not only as ZPO stabilizer but impacts directly on the photopolimerization properties as it contains a photopolymerizable group making the OIH easily UV patterned without photoinitiator . Moreover, it also impacts on the OHIs local structure as it forms a complex with ZPO, that originate ordered clusters dispersed within the OIH host [4,5]. Besides the potential of this OIH as IO components, the hybrid hosts are room-temperature efficient white light emitters lacking metal activator ions, presenting quantum yields as higher as 20 % . In this work, a series of OIH, so called di-ureasils, formed of a siliceous skeleton to which oligopolyether chains of different lengths are covalently grafted by means of urea bridges and modified by ZPO and MA will be prepared and characterized by X-ray and small angle X-ray diffractions, Raman, infrared, atomic force and photoluminescence spectroscopies. The use of the proposed OIH in the development of IO functionalities such as optical filters will be evaluated based on waveguide numerical simulation methods (beam propagation method). Waveguides will be written and characterized using the OIH aforementioned. The recording of a Bragg grating in the waveguides allow the implementation of a wavelength discrimination device with applications on optical filtering. The relevant properties of the devices, such as spectral rejection and insertion losses will be characterized.  S-J Park et al. Journal of Lightwave Tech. 22, 2004.  D.J. Shin et al., Journal of Lightwave Tech. 23, 2005.  C. Molina et al., J. Mater. Chem. 15, 3937, 2005.  R.A. Sá Ferreira et al., Proceedings of the International Conference on Telecomunications, 2006.  P.S. André et al. Proceedings ICTON, 1, We.C1.6, 223, 2006.  a) L.D. Carlos et al., Adv. Func. Mater. 11, 111, 2001; b) J. Chem. Phys. B. 108, 14924, 2004. Siemens SA and FCT (POCTI/CTM/59075/2004) is gratefully acknowledged.
The electricity sector is in the midst of a structural change driven by new technologies. In Brazil, the electricity sector regulation has mechanisms to foster innovation, including investments in R&D. Recently, the regulatory agency and the industry have been calling for approaches to increase the rate at which R&D departments generate solutions that end up being adopted. As a result, novel approaches to R&D project management have entered the agenda. In this context, the objective of this paper is to characterise Agile Product Development and its application in a highly regulated sector. The paper presents a systematic literature review with the debates about Agile and new product development. Then, a case study exploring an early adoption of the Agile approach in R&D project management in the Brazilian electricity sector is presented. Results include the identification of the Agile features most frequently mentioned in the literature. Moreover, the case study explores the Agile features that were more easily absorbed in early adoption, such as iterative patterns, and discusses implementation challenges in team structure, feedback loops, and communication.