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Research conducted over the past 15–20 years has revealed significant insights into the nature and role of learner selves in language learning settings, particularly the importance of considering the interaction between situated contextual factors and the ways learners perceive, imagine, and construe their possible selves. To further advance this active line of investigation, this article first reviews key previous research and argues for the need to address the generalizability of learner possible selves through replication of original research conducted with different types of learners in diverse social and educational contexts, particularly in multilingual settings and in relation to learning target languages (TLs) other than English. Then, two studies are identified as ideal for replication, and their motivation, methods, and findings are reported in detail. To strengthen the validity and reliability of the original studies’ findings, several suggestions are made for ways to replicate the focal studies as a necessary first step in building robust comparative evidence. As an important second step in this endeavor, the article concludes by arguing for the value of case studies that align with current dynamic conceptualizations of the self.
The objective of this study is to evaluate the relationship between suicidal ideation (SI), structural brain damage, and cognitive deficits in patients with penetrating traumatic brain injury (pTBI).
Vietnam War veterans (n = 142) with pTBI to the prefrontal cortex (PFC) underwent combination of neuropsychological and psychiatric examinations and non-contrast CT brain scan. Patients were divided into SI positive (SI+) and SI negative (SI−) groups according to the SI item of the Beck Depression Inventory.
Lesions to the left rostrolateral PFC (rlPFC) were associated with a lower risk of SI independent of depression and global functioning. Left rlPFC lesion also reduced abstract reasoning skills, which mediated the lesion effects on suicide ideation.
The left rlPFC plays a crucial role in SI independently of depression and global functioning.
Suicide is a complex phenomenon determined by the interplay of an articulated network of factors including socio-economic factors which have a decisive role. This paper investigates the development of the modern conceptualization of suicide in Europe, its sociological understandings and its intertwinement with economic cycles throughout time.
MEDLINE, SCHOLAR, EMBASE using the keywords ‘socioeconomic factors AND suicide’; ‘economic cycles AND suicide’; ‘history AND suicide’ without timeframe limitations. Moreover, journal-by-journal search in journals of related areas was performed.
In total, 51 historical studies focusing on the subjects in European countries were included. Three main areas arose: (a) development of the conceptualization of suicide over time; (b) sociological understandings of suicide according to the structure of society and its economy of power; (c) economic theories explaining the intertwinement of economic cycles and suicides.
Suicide is a deeply human phenomenon inescapably linked to and grounded in society and economic cycles. Understandings from the past show the importance of accurate analysis of socio-economic contexts that shape societies together with man’s own sense of self in order to organize multi-layered tangible and intangible support strategies to better understand and prevent suicide in this day and age.
BACKGROUND: Of the ~50 million cases of epilepsy worldwide, an estimated 80% originate from cortical areas implicated in language. Although the precise language loci can vary significantly across individuals, electrical stimulation mapping for eloquent areas has become standard of care in resective surgery for frontotemporal epilepsies. Although considerable work has been done to establish the minimum necessary resection distance from these sites to preserve language, no previous work has shown how these representations are affected by proximal resections. METHODS: Between 1967 and 2005, 22 patients [seizure onset (y): 11.5 (0.2–33); age at initial resection (y): 27.7 (10–39); time between operations (y): 8.4 (1–20.3); sex: 14 females; hemisphere: 21 left] underwent repeated perisylvian resective epilepsy surgeries of the language-dominant hemisphere. Each set of operations comprised intraoperative language mapping and cortical photographs. Using this data, a Bayesian hierarchical model was used to estimate the variability of language localization pre-resection Versus post-resection. RESULTS: The statistical model shows the posterior median difference in cortical location of language sites preresection Versus postresection is 0.6 cm, with a posterior 95% CI of 0.4 cm, 0.9 cm. CONCLUSION: This work suggests permanence in cortical language centers following resection of infringing cortex, while providing a reasonable statistical method to impute unobserved sites during the mappings, and confirming the validity of using proximity sites defined by shortest distance in the current literature.
A full-pattern fitting procedure based on the Rietveld method was applied to electron diffraction ring patterns of a two-phase system, exhibiting the co-presence of zinc sulfide (sphalerite) and zinc oxide (Wurtzite). Bright and dark field (DF) images reveal the presence of micrometric aggregates, composed of quasi-spherical nanosized crystallites. These conventional transmission electron microscopy imaging methods provide a general morphological characterization of the specimens although, in the present case, they are not suitable for a detailed characterization of the microstructural features of the analyzed samples. Owing to the overlap and broadening of the diffraction rings of the two phases, DF images cannot provide a satisfactory picture of the individual crystallites of each single phase. To overcome this limit, the mentioned Rietveld approach was applied to model the electron diffraction data. The crystalline domain size and relevant shapes for both phases were successfully evaluated using the proposed methodological approach. The excellent results obtained in the microstructural characterization of the nanostructured multiphase samples demonstrate the capability of this technique, that may represents a fully quantitative method for the routine characterization of crystalline nanomaterials.
L'étude comparative de deux tombes crématoires de la Vénétie (à Padoue et à Este), chacune datant de la fin du sixième siècle av. J-C, nous permet de mieux comprendre les étapes du rituel mortuaire. La complexité des découvertes archéologiques ne peut s'expliquer qu'au moyen d'une définition tout aussi complexe du système mortuaire, en tenant compte d'éléments tels que: le nombre d'individus à l'intérieur d'une tombe, les modifications apportées à un cercueil ou à une urne cinéraire, le mélange des objets présents dans la tombe et des os incinérés de plusieurs individus à l'intérieur de la même urne etc. Afin de constituer un organigramme, on a pris en compte à la fois les analyses micro-stratigrafiques, la soigneuse restauration des objets découverts, l'analyse de vestiges humains ainsi que des reconstructions expérimentales. Ce travail vise à acquérir une meilleure compréhension des codes/pratiques funéraires dans les sociétés complexes de l'Italie pendant l'Âge du Fer.
The terminology ‘rotorcraft-pilot coupling’ denotes phenomena arising from interaction between pilot and rotorcraft. Among these, the present work deals with ‘pilot-assisted oscillations’ that derive from unintentional pilot actions on controls due to seat vibrations, and are strictly related to rotor-aeroelasticity/airframe-structural-dynamics coupling, with involvement of blade control actuator dynamics. Focusing the attention on helicopters, a comprehensive rotorcraft model is developed and applied, with main rotor unsteady aerodynamics described in state-space form. This makes it particularly suited for stability and frequency-response analysis, as well as control applications. Numerical investigations address two critical rotorcraft-pilot coupling aeroelastic issues: stability of vertical bouncing and gust response in hovering. Results from main rotor unsteady aerodynamics modelling are compared with widely-used quasi-steady aerodynamics predictions. These suggest that, for accurate RPC/PAO phenomena predictions, mathematical modelling should include the three-dimensional, unsteady-flow effects, and that the pilot-in-the-loop passive behaviour produces a beneficial effect on the load factor generated by gust encountering.
This study investigated whether the role of working memory capacity varies over the course of second language (L2) morphosyntactic development. Eighty-seven beginning, intermediate, and advanced university L2 Spanish learners completed two nonverbal tasks measuring executive function (EF) and phonological working memory (PWM) in their native language (English) and two tasks measuring knowledge of ten grammatical structures in Spanish at three points during and after a semester of instruction. Robust relationships between both working memory components, especially PWM, and L2 performance, emerged only for lower level learners, particularly at the start of instruction and 3.5 months later. Findings demonstrate that the facilitative effects of cognitive ability appear to lessen with increasing L2 proficiency and empirically support a developmental perspective of L2 learning.
This study investigated the effect of cognitive training aimed at improving shifting ability on Parkinson’s disease (PD) patients’ performance of prospective memory (PM) tasks. Using a double-blind protocol, 17 PD patients were randomly assigned to two experimental arms. In the first arm (n=9) shifting training was administered, and in the second (placebo) arm (n=8), language and respiratory exercises. Both treatments consisted of 12 sessions executed over 4 weeks. PM and shifting measures (i.e., Trail Making Test and Alternate Fluency Test) were administered at T0 (before treatment) and T1 (immediately after treatment). A mixed analysis of variance was applied to the data. To evaluate the effects of treatment, the key effect was the interaction between Group (experimental vs. placebo) and Time of Assessment (T0 vs. T1). This interaction was significant for the accuracy indices of the PM procedure (p<.05) and for the performance parameters of the shifting tasks (p≤.05). Tukey’s HSD tests showed that in all cases passing from T0 to T1 performance significantly improved in the experimental group (in all cases p≤.02) but remained unchanged in the placebo group (all p consistently>.10). The performance change passing from T0 to T1 on the Alternate Fluency test and the PM procedure was significantly correlated (p<.05). Results show that the cognitive training significantly improved PD patients’ event-based PM performance and suggest that their poor PM functioning might be related to reduced shifting abilities. (JINS, 2014, 20, 1–10)
White matter hyperintensities (WMHs) are one the most common neuroimaging findings in patients with bipolar disorder (BD). It has been suggested that WMHs are associated with impaired insight in schizophrenia and schizoaffective patients; however, the relationship between insight and WMHs in BD type I has not been directly investigated.
Patients with BD-I (148) were recruited and underwent brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Affective symptoms were assessed using Young Mania Rating Scale (YMRS) and Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HDRS17); the presence of impaired insight was based on the corresponding items of YMRS and HDRS17.
Multiple punctate periventricular WMHs (PWMHs) and deep WMHs (DWMHs) were observed in 49.3% and 39.9% of the cases, respectively. Subjects with lower insight for mania had significantly more PWMHs (54.6% vs 22.2%; p < 0.05) when compared to BD-I patients with higher insight for mania. The presence of PWMHs was independently associated with lower insight for mania: patients who denied illness according to the YMRS were 4 times more likely to have PWMHs (95% CI: 1.21/13.42) than other patients.
Impaired insight in BD-I is associated with periventricular WMHs. The early identification of BD-I subjects with PWMHs and impaired insight may be crucial for clinicians.
High-fat meals (HFM) induce metabolic stress, leading to the activation of protective mechanisms, including inflammation and endogenous antioxidant defences. In the present study, we investigated the effects of antioxidant-rich fruit juice drinks on the endogenous antioxidant response induced by HFM. In a double-blind, cross-over design (10 d washout), fourteen overweight volunteers were randomly assigned to one of the following interventions: HFM+500 ml placebo beverage (HFM-PB, free from fruit); HFM+500 ml antioxidant beverage 1 (HFM-AB1; apple, grape, blueberry and pomegranate juices and grape skin, grape seed and green tea extracts); HFM+500 ml antioxidant beverage 2 (HFM-AB2; pineapple, black currant and plum juices). HFM-PB consumption increased the plasma levels of thiols (SH) (4 h, P< 0·001) and uric acid (UA) (2 h, P< 0·01) and total radical-trapping antioxidant parameter (TRAP) (4 h, P< 0·01). Following the consumption of drinks, UA production was significantly reduced with respect to placebo beverage consumption 8 h after HFM-AB2 consumption (P< 0·05). SH levels were reduced 0·5 (P< 0·05), 1 (P< 0·05) and 2 h (P< 0·01) after HFM-AB1 consumption and 2, 4 and 8 h (P< 0·05) after HFM-AB2 consumption. Plasma TRAP (2 h, P< 0·001) and urinary ferric reducing antioxidant power (0–8 h, P< 0·01) were increased by HFM-AB1 consumption, the drink with the highest in vitro antioxidant capacity, but not by HFM-AB2 consumption. In urine, UA levels were significantly increased from basal levels after the consumption of HFM-PB and HFM-AB2. However, neither of the beverages increased the urinary excretion of UA with respect to the placebo beverage. In conclusion, the increase in UA and SH levels induced by HFM as part of an endogenous antioxidant response to postprandial stress can be prevented by the concomitant ingestion of antioxidant-rich fruit juice drinks.
Non-enzymatic antioxidant capacity (NEAC) represents a sensitive biomarker measuring the in vivo antioxidant potential of vegetable foods. To evaluate the effectiveness of plant-derived foods and beverages on the plasma non-enzymatic antioxidant system, we analysed all literature published upto May 2010. Data were extracted by two authors independently, and the effect size was summarised using standardised mean differences by a random-effects model. For the analysis, eighty-eight studies were included, reporting a total number of 122 interventions and involving 2890 subjects. There was overall evidence of the effectiveness of fruit, vegetables, dietary patterns based on plant foods, red wine and tea in increasing plasma NEAC. No changes were found for chocolate and fruit juices. We observed an overall effect size three times higher in subjects with risk factors when compared with healthy subjects. Total radical-trapping antioxidant parameter, oxygen radical absorbance capacity and ferric-reducing antioxidant power methods showed a similar increase in plasma NEAC following dietary supplementation, whereas Trolox equivalent antioxidant capacity did not respond to dietary supplementation. Data from the present meta-analysis show that plant-derived foods represent an effective strategy to enhance an endogenous antioxidant network in humans. This is particularly evident in the presence of oxidative stress-related risk factors.
Human aortic elastin, purified by autoclaving and alkaline extraction, has been resolved by ultrasonic treatment into individual filaments, which appear, in the electron microscope, to be of constant diameter (25 Å) with junction points at fairly regular intervals (1300)Å.
Amino acid analyses on fœtal, normal and old adult elastin showed that the desmosine(s) content remains constant at 3 residues per 105g. of protein which is equivalent to 1100 Å intervals between successive residues, assuming that these are evenly spaced along the polypeptide chain(s). On the other hand the amino acid composition was found to change with age. Thus the aspartic acid and glutamic acid contents increase from 3 and 19 to 11 and 27 residues respectively; histidine and methionine, which are both absent from fœtal elastin are present in small but definite amounts (2 and 3 residues respectively) in older elastins. The lysine content is 9 residues in fœtal elastin and 6 residues in older elastin. Probably the most remarkable feature of this protein is the high content of non-polar amino acids; of 1100 residues in 105g. protein about 1000 (including glycine and proline) have hydrophobic side chains.
The alleviation of gusts effects on a tiltrotor in aeroplane and helicopter operation modes obtained by an optimal control methodology based on the actuation of elevators, wing flaperons and swashplate is examined. An optimal observer for state estimate is included in the compensator synthesis, with the Kalman-Bucy filter applied in the presence of stochastic noise. Tiltrotor dynamics is simulated through an aeroelastic model that couples rigid-body motion with wing and proprotor structural dynamics. An extensive numerical investigation examines effectiveness and robustness of the applied control procedure, taking into account the action of both deterministic and stochastic vertical gusts. In addition, a passive pilot model is included in the aeroelastic loop and the corresponding effects on uncontrolled and controlled gust response are analysed.
It has been suggested that antioxidants attenuate oxidative stress and prevent oxidative stress-related diseases. Paradoxically, randomised controlled trials (RCT) using pharmacological doses of antioxidant supplements have demonstrated harmful effects in smokers. The aim of the present study was to test the compliance, tolerability and safety of two food-based antioxidant-rich diets in smokers. One of the diets provided antioxidants at levels similar to that used in RCT using supplements which previously have generated harmful effects. The present study followed a randomised, parallel-arm dietary intervention for 8 weeks (n 102) in male smokers (age ≥ 45 years). Participants were randomised to either antioxidant-rich diet, kiwi fruit or control groups. The antioxidant-rich foods provided about 300 mmol antioxidants/week from a wide range of plant-based food items. The kiwi fruit group consumed three kiwi fruits/d. Compliance to both diets was good. Only mild, undesirable events were reported by a minority of the participants. The safety of both diets was demonstrated as no potentially harmful or pro-oxidative effects were observed. In the antioxidant-rich diet group, the mean intake of antioxidants increased from 30 mmol/d at baseline to 62 mmol/d during the intervention. In conclusion, we have demonstrated that male smokers can comply with two food-based antioxidant-rich diets. Furthermore, the present study is the first to demonstrate the tolerability and safety of dietary antioxidants at levels similar to dosages provided in RCT using supplements. Such diets may be useful in future studies investigating whether dietary antioxidants may reduce oxidative stress and related diseases.
The fast and reproducible electrical response of the new, metastable fluorite phase of Bi3TiNbO9 to ambient humidity is reported. Pellets were prepared by high energy mechanochemical activation of the precursor powders, pellet pressing, sintering, and sputter deposition of Pt electrodes. Thermal analysis shows exothermic peaks at 465 and 594 °C. X ray diffraction analysis identifies a metastable fluorite like phase, isomorphous to the δ phase of Bi2O3, between the first and the second peaks, and the stable Aurivillius phase after the second peak.
Over a wide (-40 to 20 °C) dew point (DP) range, at 23 °C ambient temperature, the conductivity increases close to exponentially, from nearly 10−3 to 102 pS/cm. Upon removal of the bias, and under DP cycling, the relaxation current responds to humidity steps, on top of the long term current decay, in a manner similar as under bias. In addition, upon a step into humidity, after a dry spell, the current overshoots (before proceeding to the long term decay) to a maximum value (Im) which depends on the duration of the previous dry spell. If this is short, Im remains below the current value (Iph) at the end of the previous humidity stage. If the dry spell is long, Im overshoots above Iph. This behavior is unlike that of any discharge current through a leaky capacitor. A preliminary model for understanding it proposes the surface transport of a charge carrier, assisted by diffusion of some species from the interior of the ceramic grains.
Combined TSC and PICTS measurements have been used to determine the activation energies (Et) and capture cross-sections (σ) of the trap levels inside the bandgap of CVD diamond in the energy range 0.4−0.7 eV. High temperature TSC analysis has been performed to determine the trap parameters in the energy range from 0.9 to 1.3 eV. A fieldmap in the Et−σ plane has been obtained from the combination of the TSC and PICTS data depicting the regions corresponding to two isolated trap levels and to a continuous distribution of states. The concentrations of defects have been calculated from the TSC signals and the measurement of the charge collection efficiency of the diamond samples.
Epidemiological evidence suggests that a high intake of plant foods is associated with lower risk of chronic diseases. However, the mechanism of action and the components involved in this effect have not been identified clearly. In recent years, the scientific community has agreed to focus its attention on a class of secondary metabolites extensively present in a wide range of plant foods: the flavonoids, suggested as having different biological roles. The anti-inflammatory actions of flavonoids in vitro or in cellular models involve the inhibition of the synthesis and activities of different pro-inflammatory mediators such as eicosanoids, cytokines, adhesion molecules and C-reactive protein. Molecular activities of flavonoids include inhibition of transcription factors such as NF-κB and activating protein-1 (AP-1), as well as activation of nuclear factor-erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2). However, the in vitro evidence might be somehow of limited impact due to the non-physiological concentrations utilized and to the fact that in vivo flavonoids are extensively metabolized to molecules with different chemical structures and activities compared with the ones originally present in the food. Human studies investigating the effect of flavonoids on markers of inflammation are insufficient, and are mainly focused on flavonoid-rich foods but not on pure molecules. Most of the studies lack assessment of flavonoid absorption or fail to associate an effect on inflammation with a change in circulating levels of flavonoids. Human trials with appropriate placebo and pure flavonoid molecules are needed to clarify if flavonoids represent ancillary ingredients or key molecules involved in the anti-inflammatory properties of plant foods.
This chapter provides a comprehensive review of the available techniques for sperm retrieval, along with a brief description of the subtleties of each surgery. It describes the assessment of the outcomes associated with the various sperm retrieval techniques, based on the available literature. As in the obliterative microsurgical epididymal sperm aspiration (MESA) technique, inspection of epididymal tubules begins at the cauda and progresses proximally toward the head of the epididymis. Percutaneous epididymal sperm aspiration (PESA) may be performed to obtain sperm for in-vitro fertilization (IVF)/ intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). It can be done with a local anesthetic in an office setting. For cases of severe male-factor infertility such as nonobstructive azoospermia, or for obstructive azoospermia, testicular sperm may be used for IVF/ICSI. In the setting of normal spermatogenesis and vasal obstruction, either iatrogenic or congenital, sperm may be aspirated from the lumen of the testicular end of the vas deferens.