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Pelvic wall control and toxicity was retrospectively assessed in patients who received individually customised parametrial boost (PMB) for locally advanced cervical cancer with 2D planned external beam radiotherapy. Outcomes of a dose-escalated combined boost were also evaluated.
Materials and methods:
Toxicity and pelvic wall recurrence was evaluated over a median period of 24 months between two groups who received different pelvic wall doses. One group was randomised to receive either intracavitary brachytherapy (ICRT) with an external beam PMB using a customised midline shield, or a dose-escalated combined boost with interstitial brachytherapy (ISBT) and PMB. The comparator group received no PMB.
At 24 months, pelvic wall recurrence occurred in 2/112 and 40/130 with and without PMB, respectively (p < 0·000001). No significant difference in toxicity was noted between boost versus no-boost groups (p = 0·56). Combined ISBT/PMB dose escalation showed no significant difference in pelvic wall recurrence compared with PMB alone (p = 0·49).
Individually customised 2D PMBs with 3D image-based ICRT was safe and improved pelvic wall control in locally advanced cervix cancer. Dose-escalated combined boosts offered no significant benefit over standard boost doses.
GaN films have been grown on SiC substrates with an AlN nucleation layer by using a metal organic chemical vapor deposition technique. Micro-cracking of the GaN films has been observed in some of the grown samples. In order to investigate the micro-cracking and microstructure, the samples have been studied using various characterization techniques such as optical microscopy, atomic force microscopy, Raman spectroscopy, scanning electron microscopy and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The surface morphology of the AlN nucleation layer is related to the stress evolution in subsequent overgrown GaN epilayers. It is determined via TEM evidence that, if the AlN nucleation layer has a rough surface morphology, this leads to tensile stresses in the GaN films, which finally results in cracking. Raman spectroscopy results also suggest this, by showing the existence of considerable tensile residual stress in the AlN nucleation layer. Based on these various observations and results, conclusions or propositions relating to the microstructure are presented.
We herein report an experimental study on the morphological evolution of a vortex ring formed inside a liquid pool after it is impacted and penetrated by a coalescing drop of the same liquid. The dynamics of the penetrating vortex ring along with the deformation of the pool surface has been captured using simultaneous high-speed laser induced fluorescence and shadowgraph techniques. It is identified that the motion of such a vortex ring can be divided into three stages, during which inertial, capillary and viscous effects alternatingly play dominant roles to modulate the penetration process, resulting in linear, non-monotonic and decelerating motion in these three stages respectively. Furthermore, we also evaluate the relevant time and length scales of these three stages and subsequently propose a unified description of the downward motion of the penetrating vortex ring. Finally, we use the experimental data for a range of drop diameters and impact speeds to validate the proposed scaling.
This study was undertaken with an aim of exploring community knowledge and treatment practices related to malaria and their determinants in high- and low-transmission areas of central India. A community-based cross-sectional study was carried out between August 2015 and January 2016 in two high- and two low-malaria-endemic districts of central India. A total of 1470 respondents were interviewed using a pre-tested structured interview schedule. Respondents residing in high-transmission areas with higher literacy levels, and of higher socioeconomic status, were found to practise more modern preventive measures than those living in low-transmission areas with low literacy levels and who were economically poor. Level of literacy, socioeconomic status and area (district) of residence were found to be the main factors affecting people’s knowledge of malaria aetiology and clinical features, and prevention and treatment practices, in this community in central India.
We investigate the sectoral and the distributional effects of a food subsidy program, where food consumption in the economy is subsidized by taxing the manufacturing good producers. In a two-agent model comprising of farmer and industrialist households, agents consume food to accumulate health. Simulations indicate that while the subsidy program increases food output and agents’ health both in the short run and the long run, manufacturing output and aggregate real GDP appear to fall in the short run and increase only in the long run. The program does not make both agents better off and exhibits social welfare gains for a limited range of subsidies.
The present work aims to explore the mechanism of action of C-cinnamoyl glycoside as an antifilarial agent against the bovine filarial nematode Setaria cervi. Both apoptosis and autophagy programmed cell death pathways play a significant role in parasitic death. The generation of reactive oxygen species, alteration of the level of antioxidant components and disruption of mitochondrial membrane potential may be the causative factors that drive the parasitic death. Monitoring of autophagic flux via the formation of autophagosome and autophagolysosome was detected via CYTO ID dye. The expression profiling of both apoptotic and autophagic marker proteins strongly support the initial findings of these two cell death processes. The increased interaction of pro-autophagic protein Beclin1 with BCL-2 may promote apoptotic pathway by suppressing anti-apoptotic protein BCL-2 from its function. This in turn partially restrains the autophagic pathway by engaging Beclin1 in the complex. But overall positive increment in autophagic flux was observed. Dynamic interaction and regulative balance of these two critical cellular pathways play a decisive role in controlling disease pathogenesis. Therefore, the present experimental work may prosper the chance for C-cinnamoyl glycosides to become a potential antifilarial therapeutic in the upcoming day after detail in vivo study and proper clinical trial.
A non-perturbative nonlinear theory for moderately dense gas–solid suspensions is outlined within the framework of the Boltzmann–Enskog equation by extending the work of Saha & Alam (J. Fluid Mech., vol. 833, 2017, pp. 206–246). A linear Stokes’ drag law is adopted for gas–particle interactions, and the viscous dissipation due to hydrodynamic interactions is incorporated in the second-moment equation via a density-corrected Stokes number. For the homogeneous shear flow, the present theory provides a unified treatment of dilute to dense suspensions of highly inelastic particles, encompassing the high-Stokes-number rapid granular regime (
) and its small-Stokes-number counterpart, with quantitative agreement for all transport coefficients. It is shown that the predictions of the shear viscosity and normal-stress differences based on existing theories deteriorate markedly with increasing density as well as with decreasing Stokes number and restitution coefficient.
In recent years, nanoscale phosphors have become vital in optoelectronic applications and to understand the improved performance of nanophosphors over bulk material, detailed investigation is essential. Herein, trivalent europium-activated Y4Al2O9 phosphors were developed by solid-state reaction and solvothermal reaction methods and their performance as a function of their dimension was studied for various applications. Under 394 nm optical excitation, the photoluminescence (PL) emission, excited state lifetime of the nanophosphor, exhibits greater performance than its bulk counterpart. The homogeneous spherical structure of the nanophosphors as compared with solid lumps of bulk phosphors is the basis for almost 40% of the enhancement in nanophosphors' intense red emission compared to the bulk. Moreover, the thermal stability of the nanophosphor is much better than the bulk phosphor, which clearly indicates a key advantage of nanophosphor. The superior performance of Eu3+-doped Y4Al2O9 nanophosphors over their bulk counterparts has been demonstrated for industrial phosphor-converted light-emitting diodes and visualization of latent fingerprint.
The ethnicity of the studied group is one of the key characteristics that should be taken into consideration when analysing the problem of overweight and obesity. It is especially crucial in populations of countries such as India, where the proportion of the fat to lean mass and general adiposity are significantly different from those observed among Europeans. This can cause a higher risk of various metabolic-related diseases to appear at relatively lower absolute adiposity. Therefore, there is a need for further research regarding the issues of body mass and composition in Indian populations, to obtain additional information as well as to develop ethnically specific cut-off points.
The Infectious Diseases and Beliaghata General Hospital, Kolkata, India witnessed a sudden increase in admissions of diarrhoea cases during the first 2 weeks of August 2015 following heavy rainfall. This prompted us to investigate the event. Cases were recruited through hospital-based surveillance along with the collection of socio-demographic characteristics and clinical profile using a structured questionnaire. Stool specimens were tested at bacteriological laboratory of the National Institute of Cholera and Enteric Diseases (NICED), Kolkata. Admission of 3003 diarrhoea cases, clearly indicated occurrence of outbreak in Kolkata municipal area as it was more than two standard deviation of the mean number (911; s.d. = 111) of diarrhoea admissions during the same period in previous 7 years. Out of 164 recruited cases, 25% were under-5 children. Organisms were isolated from 80 (49%) stool specimens. Vibrio cholerae O1 was isolated from 50 patients. Twenty-eight patients had this organism as the sole pathogen. Among 14 infants, five had cholera. All V. cholerae O1 isolates were resistant to nalidixic acid, followed by co-trimoxazole (96%), streptomycin (92%), but sensitive to fluroquinolones. We confirmed the occurrence of a cholera outbreak in Kolkata during August 2015 due to V. cholerae O1 infection, where infants were affected.
Wearable and bio-implantable health monitoring applications require flexible memory devices that can be used to locally store body vitals prior to transmission or to support local data processing in distributed smart systems. In recent years, non-volatile resistive random access memories composed of oxide-based insulators such as hafnium oxide and niobium pentoxide have attracted a great deal of interest. Unfortunately, hafnium and niobium are not low-cost materials and may also present health challenges. In this work, we have explored the alternative of using titanium dioxide as the insulating oxide using a low-cost solution-phase deposition process. Aqueous sol deposited thin films were deposited on standard RCA-cleaned commercial thermal silicon dioxide (500 nm) wafer (500 µm). Patterned bottom contacts Cr/Au (∼200/300 Å) using shadow masks were deposited on the substrate using successive DC sputtering, and thermal evaporation, respectively at 5 X 10-6 Torr. A sol was prepared using titanium (IV) butoxide as precursor hydrolysed under water and ethanol to form a colloidal solution (sol) at 50°C under constant stirring. Powder X-Ray Diffraction (PXRD) scans of calcined (from sol at 750°C) nanoparticles show a mixture of anatase and rutile phases, confirming the composition of the material. The sol was slowly cooled to room temperature before being spin coated at low rotational speeds on to the substrate in multiple steps involving several spin coating and drying steps to form a uniform film. Top contacts (Ag) of thickness (∼500 Å) were deposited on the sol-deposited thin films using thermal evaporation. The resulting devices were coated with a thick layer of polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) using a 10:1 ratio of base elastomer and curing agent respectively. After drying the PDMS, resistance measurements were carried out. A high resistance state was detected prior to electroforming in the air at ∼5 MΩ which remains nearly unchanged (∼4.3 MΩ) when dipped in a ∼7.4 pH phosphate buffer solution (equivalent to human blood’s pH (reference average value ∼7.4 pH)). Unencapsulated devices (UM1) were further characterized in air using a Keithley 4200-SCS semiconductor parameter analyzer in dual sweep mode to observe repeatable hysteresis behavior with a large difference between trace and retrace R-V characteristics (∼50±3% over a pristine device), which compares favorably with recent data in the literature on high-performance sputtered TiO2 memristors. Unchanged retention ratio using biocompatible device materials and encapsulation suggests that these devices can be used for biomedical implantable sensor electronics.
Naticid taxonomy is in a state of flux owing to non-descript shell morphology and frequent convergence. Inadequate preservation of naticid body fossils has further complicated the matter in determining the true affinity and the exact time of origin of the clade. As a result, a plethora of classificatory schemes of naticid phylogeny and times of origin has been proposed. In many previous studies, true naticid affinities of fossils have been sought based on single or a few morphological characters, which are susceptible to poor preservation. In the present paper, we have attempted a holistic reappraisal of naticid taxonomy based on an extensive database of shell morphological characters and identified many distinct family- and subfamily-specific characters that survived fossilization. This approach has enabled us to identify three new naticid species from the Late Jurassic horizons of Kutch, India, thus extending back the time of origin of the family Naticidae by 30 Ma.
Analysis of character matrix data reveals that the present species—Gyrodes mahalanobisi new species, Euspira jhuraensis new species, and Euspira lakhaparensis new species—belong to two subfamilies, Gyrodinae and Polinicinae. The occurrence of typical naticid drill holes on various coeval gastropod and bivalve taxa along with these body fossils provides strong supporting evidence for the naticid affinity of these forms.
Many x-ray tubes, used by crystallographers and others, operate with the aid of a tungsten filament in the region of 2500°K, The high operating temperature results in evaporation of the filament material with two serious consequences. The first is a finite but relatively short lifetime. The second is contamination of the target and windows with tungsten. In addition, if the tube is of the demountable type, connected to an oil-diffusion pump and a mechanical fore-pump, carbonaceous deposits can be a problem. In a typical tube, the filament is mounted within a centimeter or two of the target. The resulting radiant heating of the target presents additional cooling problems especially with low melting-point targets. Many if not all of the above objectional features are circumvented by a plasma controlled x-ray tube using a low pressure atmosphere of helium and a cage-like cathode fabricated from nickel wire-mesh. An experimental model has been operated for several hours at 15 kv and 10 ma on an aluminum target. Scaling up of the apparatus will permit power dissipations in the kilowatt range limited mainly by the available power source or vaporization of the target material.
Amorphous Si (a-Si) is used for fabrication of commercial low-cost flat panel image detectors for radiographic applications such as computed tomography (CT) imaging. a-Si photodiodes are known to exhibit a rapid decrease in quantum efficiency near 750nm. While crystalline Si does not suffer from such an early decline, the large-area and low-cost constraints of medical imagers make it challenging and costly to use crystalline Si for such devices. In this work, we report on the development of a sensitive layer for upconversion from 785 nm to green region of the spectrum, which nearly matches the peak quantum efficiency of a-Si detectors. Various host materials have been extensively studied in literature with rare earth ions such as Er3+(emission: green+red), Tm3+(emission: blue), Ho3+(emission: red+green) along with Yb3+ as a sensitizer for upconversion to the visible regime at high incident optical power (∼100 mW) for colloidal solutions. We carried out a thermal decomposition synthesis of NaYF4:Yb(18%),Er(2%),Gd(15%) at moderate temperature (∼320°C), resulting in a nearly pure hexagonal phase material. This is confirmed by powder X-ray diffraction (PXRD) of the unannealed sample with a lattice constant (∼5.17 Å). High-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM) measurements reveal the formation of nearly spherical nanoparticles. The observed plane () inferred from lattice fringes in TEM data with a visibly estimated interplanar distance (4.4±1.6 Å) is in reasonable agreement with standard data (∼5.17 Å) for comparable NaYF4-based materials. Excitation (785 nm) of the deposited thin films of Gd-doped unannealed material at relatively low incident power (∼0.4 mW) exhibits a PL response in green (539 nm) and red (665 nm) region of the spectrum. Gd-based upconversion material based thin films are thus a feasible photonic material for potential effective extension of high quantum efficiency range in a-Si for flat panel image detectors.
Iodine is an essential trace mineral, vital for its functions in many physiological processes in the human body. Both iodine deficiency (ID) and excess are associated with adverse health effects; ID and excess iodine intake have both been identified in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). The review aims to (1) review the iodine status among populations in SSA until October 2018, and (2) identify populations at risk of excess or inadequate iodine intakes. A systematic search of relevant articles was carried out by a seven-member research team using PubMed, Science Direct and Scopus. A total of twenty-two articles was included for data extraction. Of the articles reviewed, the majority sought to determine the prevalence of iodine status of the study populations; others measured the impact of uncontrolled and unmonitored salt iodisation on iodine excess and tested the effectiveness of water iodisation. Although iodine status varied largely in study populations, ID and excessive iodine intake often coexisted within populations. The implementation of nutrition interventions and other strategies across SSA has resulted in the reduction of goitre prevalence. Even so, goitre prevalence remains high in many populations. Improvements in access to iodised salt and awareness of its importance are needed. The emerging problem of excess iodine intakes, however, should be taken into consideration by policy makers and programme implementers. As excessive iodine intakes may have adverse health effects greater than those induced by iodine deficient diets, more population-based studies are needed to investigate iodine intakes of the different population groups.
Lung surfactant (LS), a thin layer of phospholipids and proteins inside the alveolus of the lung is the first biological barrier to inhaled nanoparticles (NPs). LS stabilizes and protects the alveolus during its continuous compression and expansion by fine-tuning the surface tension at the air-water interface. Previous modelling studies have reported the biophysical function of LS monolayer and its role, but many open questions regarding the consequences and interactions of airborne nano-sized particles with LS monolayer remain. In spite of gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) having a paramount role in biomedical applications, the understanding of the interactions between bare AuNPs (as pollutants) and LS monolayer components still unresolved. Continuous inhalation of NPs increases the possibility of lung ageing, reducing the normal lung functioning and promoting lung malfunction, and may induce serious lung diseases such as asthma, lung cancer, acute respiratory distress syndrome, and more. Different medical studies have shown that AuNPs can disrupt the routine lung functions of gold miners and promote respiratory diseases. In this work, coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulations are performed to gain an understanding of the interactions between bare AuNPs and LS monolayer components at the nanoscale. Different surface tensions of the monolayer are used to mimic the biological process of breathing (inhalation and exhalation). It is found that the NP affects the structure and packing of the lipids by disordering lipid tails. Overall, the analysed results suggest that bare AuNPs impede the normal biophysical function of the lung, a finding that has beneficial consequences to the potential development of treatments of various respiratory diseases.
Transport properties, performance, and durability of a proton exchange fuel cell (PEMFC) highly depend on microstructure and spatial distribution of components in the gas diffusion layer (GDL), microporous layer (MPL), and catalyst layers (CLs) of the fuel cell. Modeling of transport properties and understanding of these effects are challenging due to limited understanding of actual three-dimensional (3D) structure of the components, especially over a wide range of length scales. In this work, 3D imaging on multiple scales, namely electron tomography on a nanoscale, focused ion beam–scanning electron microscopy on a microscale, and 3D X-ray microscopy on a macroscale, was applied to obtain 3D reconstructions of the actual CL, MPL, and GDL microstructure. Direct numerical simulations on 3D data sets with an upscaling approach were applied to demonstrate the capability to simulate overall electrical conductivity of the system. Details of the process, challenges, and results are described.
Weedy rice species exhibit differential competitive ability and cause significant losses to rice yield. The present study was conducted to evaluate the competing ability of weedy rice accessions collected from foothills of eastern Himalayas and coastal Odisha grown in the presence of cultivated indica rice var. Swarna. The competitive ability of Swarna and weedy rices were estimated on the basis of (i) Swarna yield reduction under different durations of competition with weedy rice; and (ii) nutrient uptake by Swarna and weedy rice in competitive environment. There was significant yield reduction (18%) when competition was allowed until 6 weeks after emergence (WAE) compared to competition until 2 WAE, which was due to vigorous growth of weedy rice at early vegetative stage. The biomass accumulation and tiller number of weedy rice were significantly higher compared to Swarna. Odisha weedy rice accession recorded about 18, 57 and 24% higher N, P and K uptake, respectively, than Swarna. The highest yield reduction (22%) in Swarna was recorded when grown with OA1 and the lowest impact (7.7%) was recorded with AA2. As conclusion, management practices should be implemented within 2–4 weeks of emergence considering 5–10% acceptable yield loss of Swarna, and grain yield of cultivated rice was reduced significantly by high N and K uptake by weedy rice under a competitive environment.
Resin acid-enriched composition (RAC) mainly containing tall oil fatty acid with an active component of resin acid (RA) can improve the microbial population in the digestive system, change the microbial fermentation, and improve the feed conversion ratio. We investigated the effects of dietary supplementation of RAC on sow colostrum yield (CY), colostrum composition and gut microbiota. Tall oil fatty acid and RA are commonly termed RAC and CLA, pinolenic, abietic, dehydrobiotic acids are characteristic components of RAC. The experiment was conducted in three trials in three respective herds. Sows were fed with a control diet and the same diet supplemented with 5 g RAC/day per sow during the last week of gestation. The 16S ribosomal RNA gene sequencing technique was used to assess sows’ faecal microbiota populations at farrowing. Colostrum nutritional composition, acute phase proteins (APPs) and immunoglobulin (Ig) content were also assessed. Individual piglets were weighed at birth and 24 h after the birth of first piglets in order to calculate CY and later at 3 to 4 weeks to calculate average daily gain. The RAC-fed sows had significantly higher IgG levels (P<0.05) in all three herds but treatment did not influence colostrum IgA and IgM concentration. There were no significant differences in colostrum protein, lactose and fat content in sows of the two diet groups (P>0.05), but those fed RAC had higher levels of colostrum serum amyloid A. Colostrum yield was significantly higher in RAC-fed sows in herds 2 and 3 with heavier piglets between 3 and 4 weeks of age (P<0.05), but not in herd 1 (P>0.05). Resin acid-enriched composition supplementation significantly increased some beneficial and fermentative bacteria (Romboutsia and Clostridium sensu stricto) than the control diet (P<0.01) while some opportunistic pathogens (Barnesiella, Sporobacter, Intestinimonas and Campylobacter), including Proteobacteria, were suppressed. Therefore, RAC added to the sow diet at late pregnancy increases colostrum IgG, colostrum availability for neonate piglets, and seems to promote better maternal intestinal microbial sources.
National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBDCP) data have shown that nearly half of all malaria deaths in India occur in tribal-dominated areas. The present study took a qualitative approach to understanding community perceptions and practices related to malarial infection and anti-malarial programmes. Twelve focus group discussions and 26 in-depth interviews of Accredited Social Health Activists (ASHAs) were conducted in nine villages in the district of Gadchiroli, Maharashtra state in India in June 2016. A total of 161 village residents (94 males and 67 females) participated in the focus group discussions and 26 health workers participated in the in-depth interviews. Data were analysed using the content analysis approach. The findings revealed widespread misconceptions about malaria among village residents, and low use of preventive measures and anti-malarial services. Ignorance and treatment by unqualified traditional healers delay effective treatment seeking. Furthermore, failure to maintain drug compliance adds to the gravity of the problem. The study identified the social and behavioural factors affecting treatment uptake and use of treatment facilities in the study area. These should help the development of the behavioural change communication arm of any control strategy for malaria through improving community participation, so improving preventive practices and optimizing utilization of anti-malarial services.