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Learn about the state-of-the-art at the interface between information theory and data science with this first unified treatment of the subject. Written by leading experts in a clear, tutorial style, and using consistent notation and definitions throughout, it shows how information-theoretic methods are being used in data acquisition, data representation, data analysis, and statistics and machine learning. Coverage is broad, with chapters on signal acquisition, data compression, compressive sensing, data communication, representation learning, emerging topics in statistics, and much more. Each chapter includes a topic overview, definition of the key problems, emerging and open problems, and an extensive reference list, allowing readers to develop in-depth knowledge and understanding. Providing a thorough survey of the current research area and cutting-edge trends, this is essential reading for graduate students and researchers working in information theory, signal processing, machine learning, and statistics.
Ethnic minority groups often have more complex and aversive pathways to mental health care. However, large population-based studies are lacking, particularly regarding involuntary hospitalisation. We sought to examine the risk of involuntary admission among first-generation ethnic minority groups with early psychosis in Ontario, Canada.
Using health administrative data, we constructed a retrospective cohort (2009–2013) of people with first-onset non-affective psychotic disorder aged 16–35 years. This cohort was linked to immigration data to ascertain migrant status and country of birth. We identified the first involuntary admission within 2 years and compared the risk of involuntary admission for first-generation migrant groups to the general population. To control for the role of migrant status, we restricted the sample to first-generation migrants and examined differences by country of birth, comparing risk of involuntary admission among ethnic minority groups to a European reference. We further explored the role of migrant class by adjusting for immigrant vs refugee status within the migrant cohort. We also explored effect modification of migrant class by ethnic minority group.
We identified 15 844 incident cases of psychotic disorder, of whom 19% (n = 3049) were first-generation migrants. Risk of involuntary admission was higher than the general population in five of seven ethnic minority groups. African and Caribbean migrants had the highest risk of involuntary admission (African: risk ratio (RR) = 1.52, 95% CI = 1.34–1.73; Caribbean: RR = 1.58, 95% CI = 1.37–1.82), and were the only groups where the elevated risk persisted when compared to the European reference group within the migrant cohort (African: RR = 1.24, 95% CI = 1.04–1.48; Caribbean: RR = 1.29, 95% CI = 1.07–1.56). Refugee status was independently associated with involuntary admission (RR = 1.16, 95% CI = 1.02–1.32); however, this risk varied by ethnic minority group, with Caribbean refugees having an elevated risk of involuntary admission compared with Caribbean immigrants (RR = 1.72, 95% CI = 1.15–2.58).
Our findings are consistent with the international literature showing increased rates of involuntary admission among some ethnic minority groups with early psychosis. Interventions aimed at improving pathways to care could be targeted at these groups to reduce disparities.
A histological characterization of gonadal development in the tetra Astyanax bimaculatus was performed, aimed at determining its reproductive cycle in streams localized inside the Amazonian forest. Collections were carried out monthly from August 2017 to July 2018 at the Zoobotânica Foundation of Marabá, PA. Collected specimens were weighed and measured, and their gonads and liver were removed and weighed to calculate gonadosomatic and hepatosomatic indexes. Gonads were fixed and treated for routine histology for light microscopy. Materials were stained with toluidine blue and haematoxylin and eosin. The Amazonian A. bimaculatus species presented two reproductive periods in the year, one at the end of the winter season and another during the summer. Females showed an asynchronous development of their oocytes and only two reproductive phases of development were observed during the whole period ‘developing’ and ‘spawning capable’. Males presented cystic spermatogenesis, with an anastomosing tubular testis containing spermatogonia spread along the germinal epithelium (unrestricted spermatogonial). These morphological characteristics are considered phylogenetically more primitive. Male specimens were observed to have five different phases during the period: immature, initial maturation, mid maturation, final maturation and regression. The huge fluctuations in Amazonian streams was observed, in which water volumes varied considerably across seasons, culminating even in total drought. In spite of this, A. bimaculatus could be found during all seasons, showing its impressive reproductive adaptation to its conditions.
The Egyptian Vulture Neophron percnopterus was once an abundant species in the Cabo Verde Islands. Since the 1960s though, and especially during the 1980–1990s, it consistently declined to near extinction. Evidence collected indicates a remnant population of about a dozen pairs or less, scattered through the desert rangelands of only three islands. Extensive enquiry work revealed that this likely resulted from the concomitant effects of the rise in unnatural mortality due to the formerly widespread and long-lasting use of dangerous pesticides and the (still on-going) poisoning of stray dogs and other nuisance animals, and a decrease in food resources associated with factors linked with development, such as urbanisation, rural abandonment and better sanitation. Avoiding imminent extinction calls for emergency action against current threats to the remaining vultures, such as poisoning and electrocution, but also potential causes of impaired fecundity such as hazardous pesticides and shortage of food resources.
The aim of this position paper is to assist primary health care (PHC) providers, policymakers, and researchers by discussing the current context in which palliative health care functions within PHC in Europe. The position paper gives examples for improvements to palliative care models from studies and international discussions at European Forum for Primary Care (EFPC) workshops and conferences.
Palliative care is a holistic approach that improves the quality of life of patients and their families facing problems associated with terminal illness, through the prevention and relief of suffering by means of early identification and diligent assessment and treatment of pain and other problems, whether physical, psychosocial, or spiritual. Unfortunately, some Europeans, unless they have cancer, still do not have access to generalist or specialist palliative care.
A draft of this position paper was distributed electronically through the EFPC network in 2015, 2016, and 2017. Active collaboration with the representatives of the International Primary Palliative Care Network was established from the very beginning and more recently with the EAPC Primary Care Reference Group. Barriers, opportunities, and examples of good and bad practices were discussed at workshops focusing on palliative care at the international conferences of Southeastern European countries in Ljubljana (2015) and Budva (2017), at regular conferences in Amsterdam (2015) and Riga (2016), at the WONCA Europe conferences in Istanbul (2015), Copenhagen (2016), and Prague (2017), and at the EAPC conference in Madrid (2017).
There is great diversity in the extent and type of palliative care provided in primary care by European countries. Primary care teams (PCTs) are well placed to encourage timely palliative care. We collected examples from different countries. We found numerous barriers influencing PCTs in preparing care plans with patients. We identified many facilitators to improve the organization of palliative care.
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.
The Rio Grande Cone is a major fanlike depositional feature in the continental slope of the Pelotas Basin, Southern Brazil. Two representative sediment cores collected in the Cone area were retrieved using a piston core device. In this work, the organic matter (OM) in the sediments was characterized for a continental vs. marine origin using chemical proxies to help constrain the origin of gas in hydrates. The main contribution of OM was from marine organic carbon based on the stable carbon isotope (δ13C-org) and total organic carbon/total nitrogen ratio (TOC:TN) analyses. In addition, the 14C data showed important information about the origin of the OM and we suggest some factors that could modify the original organic matter and therefore mask the “real” 14C ages: (1) biological activity that could modify the carbon isotopic composition of bulk terrestrial organic matter values, (2) the existence of younger sediments from mass wasting deposits unconformably overlying older sediments, and (3) the deep-sediment-sourced methane contribution due to the input of “old” (>50 ka) organic compounds from migrating fluids.
To evaluate differences in food consumption of Brazilian adults according to the presence of children and adolescents in the household.
Averages of two non-consecutive days of food records from the first Brazilian National Dietary Survey were analysed and classified into eighteen food groups according to nutritional characteristics and use in diet. We compared the mean percentage contribution to total daily energy intake of each food group according to three groups of household composition: adults living alone or with other adults (32·7 %), adults living with children (35·6 %) and adults living with adolescents (31·7 %).
Brazilian nationwide survey, 2008–2009.
Adults aged 20–59 years (n 6312; 52·1 % female).
Women living alone or with other adults had higher consumption of vegetables, milk and other drinks, and lower consumption of beans and rice, compared with those living with children or adolescents. Men living alone or with other adults had higher consumption of sweets & desserts and vegetables, and lower consumption of beans, compared with those living with children or adolescents. According to household income, adults in the highest tertile who lived with children or adolescents presented a mixed consumption of healthy and unhealthy foods, whereas their counterparts in the first income tertile presented a marked consumption of foods considered traditional of the Brazilian population.
There are differences in food consumption based on the presence of children and adolescents in the household, with greater variation according to gender and household income.
Partial amount of austenite can be dynamically transformed into ferrite above the Ae3 temperature when it is being deformed. This happens by a displacive mechanism. On removal of the load, it retransforms back into the stable austenite by diffusional processes. Plate rolling simulation under continuous cooling conditions was carried out on a high Nb X70 steel. Pass strains of 0.2 together with interpass times of 10, 20 and 30 s were employed. The initial and final temperatures for the finishing simulation were 920 and 830 °C, respectively. The mean flow stresses (MFS`s) behaviour indicates that dynamic transformation (DT) and recrystallization (DRX) were taking place during straining. It is shown that ferrite is formed during the roughing passes and increases its volume fraction throughout the finishing rolling steps. The ferrite formation is favoured by strain accumulation, shorter time between passes and also when the temperature reaches the Ae3 line. The results obtained here can be used to design improved models for transformation on accelerated cooling.
In the present study, TiO2NT coatings grown on simulated body fluid-based electrolyte were investigated as drug delivery devices. Nanotubes (NTs) were grown over commercially pure Ti and Ti6Al4V alloy. Morphology analysis showed that NTs in alloy samples present an inner diameter of 10 nm smaller in average than NTs grown over pure Ti. The surface wettability in water decreased with the anodizing time for both substrates. The application of coatings as drug delivery devices has been studied through the incorporation of ciprofloxacin. To control the drug release, collagen was used as the diffusional barrier. It was observed the drug release follows a Fick’s kinetics. Bioactivity assays showed the absence of hemolytic activity. The concentration of the drug during the release interval remained below the toxic concentration limit, presenting a bacteriostatic activity. All coatings prepared presented a high antibacterial activity, being the area of inhibition of bacterial growth above 13 times the area of the implant.
We compare the efficiency of mechanical or enzymatic methods, and their combination, for the isolation of ovarian preantral follicles (PFs) from collared peccaries. The ovaries from six females were subjected to the different methods investigated here. For the enzymatic method, ovary fragments were exposed to collagenase type IV in TCM-HEPES medium; the mechanical procedure was based on ovarian cortex dissociation by using a scalpel blade. The residual solution obtained after the mechanical isolation was subjected to the enzymatic procedure. The number of isolated PFs was quantified and classified as primordial, primary, or secondary; their viability was assessed using trypan blue dye assay. To confirm the results, PFs derived from the most efficient method were evaluated for integrity using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and subjected to a 24 h in vitro culture for subsequent evaluation of viability by using fluorescent probes. A higher number of PFs (P < 0.05) was obtained from the enzymatic method (961.7 ± 132.9) in comparison with the mechanical method (434.3 ± 88.9), but no difference was observed between the two methods and their combination (743.2 ± 92.8). The trypan blue assay showed that the enzymatic method (98.7 ± 0.6%) provided the highest percentage of viable follicles (P < 0.05). Furthermore, SEM confirmed the ultrastructural integrity of the surface architecture of peccary PFs isolated by the enzymatic procedure; epifluorescence microscopy was used to confirm their viability (86.0%). In conclusion, we suggest that the enzymatic method investigated here is useful for the isolation of viable ovarian PFs from collared peccaries.
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.
Food insecurity (FI) is defined as uncertain access to healthy food in quantity and quality. We hypothesize that FI may be associated with greater health-care use and absenteeism because it may amplify the effect of diseases; also, FI may be associated with reduced health-care access because it reflects economic vulnerability. The present study estimates the association between FI and health-care use and access, and absenteeism.
Cross-sectional data collected in 2015–2016. Health-care use was measured as the number of consultations, taking any drug and having been hospitalized in the past year. Health-care access was measured by the suspension of medication and having fewer consultations due to financial constraints. Absenteeism was measured by the weeks of sickness leave. Binary variables were modelled as a function of FI using logistic regressions; continuous variables were modelled as a function of FI using negative binomial and zero-inflated negative binomial regressions. Covariates were included sequentially.
Non-institutionalized adults from the EpiDoc3 cohort (n 5648).
FI was significantly associated with health-care use before controlling for socio-economic conditions and quality of life. Moderate/severe FI was positively related to the suspension of medicines (adjusted OR = 4·68; 95 % CI 3·11, 6·82) and to having fewer consultations (adjusted OR = 3·98; 95 % CI 2·42, 6·37). FI and absenteeism were not significantly associated.
Our results support the hypothesis that FI reflects precariousness, which hinders access to health care. The greater use of health care among food-insecure people is explained by their worse quality of life and lower socio-economic condition, so that the specific role of poor nutrition is unclear.
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.
To investigate an outbreak of acute gastroenteritis caused by norovirus (NoV) in a long-term care facility (LTCF) in Portugal to describe and estimate its extent, and we implemented control measures.
Probable cases were residents or staff members in the LTCF with at least 1 of the following symptoms: (1) diarrhea, (2) vomiting, (3) nausea, and/or (4) abdominal pain between October 31 and December 8, 2017. Confirmed cases were probable cases with positive NoV infection detected by real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and the same genotype in stool specimens.
The outbreak was caused by NoV GII.P16-GII.4 Sydney 2012 variant and affected 146 people. The highest illness rates were observed in residents (97 of 335, 29%) and nurses (16 of 83, 19%). All 11 resident wards were affected. Data on cases and their working or living areas suggest that movement between wards facilitated the transmission of NoV, likely from person to person.
The delay in the identification of the causative agent, a lack of restrictions of resident and staff movement between wards, and ineffective initial deep-cleaning procedures resulted an outbreak that continued for >1 month. The outbreak ended only after implementation of strict control measures. Recommendations for controlling future NoV outbreaks in LTCFs include emphasizing the need to control resident’s movements and to restrict visitors, timely and effective environmental cleaning and disinfection, leave of absence for ill staff, and encouraging effective hand hygiene.
Asthma-obesity is a multifactorial disease with specific asthma phenotypes that aggravate due to overweight and an unbalanced diet. Furthermore, obese asthmatic patients are corticotherapy-resistant. Therefore, the aims of the present study were to evaluate the effects of an interdisciplinary intervention on food consumption, body composition, lung function and adipokines in asthmatic and non-asthmatic obese adolescents and to investigate the influence of nutrients on lung function. Obese non-asthmatic (n 42) and obese asthmatic (n 21) adolescents of both sexes were enrolled in the present study. Food intake, adipokine levels, body composition, asthma symptoms and lung function were assessed across the study. After the intervention of 1 year, there was a reduction (P ≤ 0·01) in BMI, body fat percentage, visceral and subcutaneous fat and an increase (P ≤ 0·01) in lean mass and all lung function variables in both groups, except the relation between forced expiratory volume in 1 s and forced vital capacity (FEV1:FVC) in non-asthmatic patients. Moreover, both groups decreased lipid and cholesterol consumption (P ≤ 0·01). The highest energy consumption (β = −0·021) was associated with lower values of FVC. Similarly, carbohydrate consumption (β = −0·06) and cholesterol were negative predictors (β = −0·05) in FEV1:FVC. However, the consumption of Ca (β = 0·01), fibres (β = 1·34) and vitamin A (β = 0·01) were positive predictors of FEV1:FVC. Asthma-obesity interdisciplinary treatment promoted an improvement on food consumption and lung function in adolescents and demonstrated that the consumption of nutrients influenced an increase in lung function.
The objective of this work was to evaluate the impact of changes during membrane filtration on the heat stability of milk protein concentrates. Dairy protein concentrates have been widely employed in high protein drinks formulations and their stability to heat treatment is critical to ensure quality of the final product. Pasteurized milk was concentrated three-fold by membrane filtration, and the ionic composition was modified by addition of water or permeate from filtration (diafiltration). Diafiltration with water did not affect the apparent diameter of the casein micelles, but had a positive effect on heat coagulation time (HCT), which was significantly longer (50 min), compared to the non diafiltered concentrates (about 30 min). UHT treatments increased the particle size of the casein micelles, as well as the turbidity of retentates. Differences between samples with and without diafiltration were confirmed throughout further analysis of the protein composition of the unsedimentable fraction, highlighting the importance of soluble protein composition on the processing functionality of milk concentrates.