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The basic income (BI) scheme is a fundamental reform of the welfare state that has recently gained widespread attention. Proposals for different variants of BI schemes have emerged to account for varying political and societal goals. This study investigates what citizens think about the idea of a BI, and to what extent citizens’ perceptions depend on the exact design of such a scheme and the context in which this policy is embedded. Empirically, we rely on conjoint experiments conducted in Finland and Switzerland – the two countries in which the introduction of a BI scheme has recently been discussed most intensely. We find that the level of public support for BI is higher in Finland than it is in Switzerland. Moreover, despite the contrasting designs of the BI proposals in the two countries, both Finnish and Swiss citizens tend to favor more generous schemes restricting non-nationals’ access to the provision.
The essential oil (EO) of Thymus capitatus, seven fractions (F1–F7) obtained from silica gel chromatography, and several pure EO components were evaluated with respect to in vitro activities against Echinococcus multilocularis metacestodes and germinal layer (GL) cells. Attempts to evaluate physical damage in metacestodes by phosphoglucose isomerase (PGI) assay failed because EO and F1–F7 interfered with the PGI-activity measurements. A metacestode viability assay based on Alamar Blue, as well as transmission electron microscopy, demonstrated that exposure to EO, F2 and F4 impaired metacestode viability. F2 and F4 exhibited higher toxicity against metacestodes than against mammalian cells, whereas EO was as toxic to mammalian cells as to the parasite. However, none of these fractions exhibited notable activity against isolated E. multilocularis GL cells. Analysis by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry showed that carvacrol was the major component of the EO (82.4%), as well as of the fractions F3 (94.4%), F4 (98.1%) and F5 (90.7%). Other major components of EO were β-caryophyllene, limonene, thymol and eugenol. However, exposure of metacestodes to these components was ineffective. Thus, fractions F2 and F4 of T. capitatus EO contain potent anti-echinococcal compounds, but the activities of these two fractions are most likely based on synergistic effects between several major and minor constituents.
The microaerophilic protozoan parasite Giardia lamblia occurs globally and causes dysentery in humans and animals. Since it is very sensitive to oxygen and reactive oxygen species, G. lamblia disposes over several enzymatic pathways to counter oxidative stress. One of the enzymes involved is thioredoxin reductase (TrxR), a central redox regulator that indirectly reduces peroxiredoxins via thioredoxin, an electron shuttle protein. Interestingly, the components of the TrxR-mediated redox system, including functional thioredoxins, have so far not been described despite their surmised importance for parasite survival. We aimed at filling this gap and attempted to identify functional thioredoxins and other interaction partners of TrxR in G. lamblia. To this end, we conducted database searches and expressed three recombinant candidate thioredoxins in Escherichia coli for ensuing enzyme assays. Further, co-immunoprecipitation experiments were conducted in order to identify further components of the thioredoxin redox network. Finally, the cellular localization of TrxR and peroxiredoxin 1 was determined by immunofluorescence microscopy. Surprisingly, our endeavours did not result in the identification of a functional thioredoxin or other credible interaction partners of TrxR. We, therefore, conclude that there is currently no evidence for a canonical thioredoxin redox network in G. lamblia.
In this study, we used a stress test to investigate endocrinological and subjective stress responses of 8- to 14-year-old children with internalizing or externalizing disorders and healthy controls. The sample (N = 170) consisted of clinical and community children. Parents were given a diagnostic interview to diagnose their children's psychiatric condition. We measured saliva cortisol and subjectively experienced arousal in children before and after the Trier Social Stress Test for Children. Children also rated their performance immediately after the stress test, and 1 hr later they rated their positive and negative thoughts about this stressful event. Children with internalizing or externalizing disorders exhibited a blunted cortisol response compared to healthy controls. Depressed children rated their test performance lower and reported more negative thoughts after the test in comparison to healthy controls, anxious children reported more arousal before and after the task, and children with externalizing disorders reported more positive thoughts. In regression analyses, cortisol and subjective stress responses were both predictive of psychiatric disorders. The study extends previous work on the relation between psychiatric disorders and children's stress responses to an experimentally induced stress task by including a broad range of psychiatric disorders and by integrating endocrinological and subjective stress responses.
Alveolar echinococcosis (AE) is an emerging zoonotic disease caused by the cestode Echinococcus multilocularis. The secondary infection model of AE is based on intraperitoneal injection of disease-causing metacestodes into the peritoneal cavity of mice, which allows investigations on novel drugs or immunotherapeutical treatment options in vivo. So far, such in vivo studies assessed exclusively the parasite weight at the endpoint of a given treatment period. We here developed an ultrasound (US)-based scoring system that allows to follow-up parasite development in the living animal, and provides insights into parasite growth during the treatment phase. By this method a statistically significant difference between untreated and medicated mice with E. multilocularis infection was observed at 2 months post-infection, and the growth curve of the parasite load was described by a linear mixed model. High correlation and similar levels of variation were observed for the standard method based on parasite weight measurement, the novel US-based scoring system, as well volume segmentation by post-mortem magnetic resonance imaging. Thus, US-based scoring in the live animal has the potential to assist the 3R concept by contributing to the refinement and reduction of animal use in experimental echinococcosis.
Electoral systems determine the role that representatives’ party affiliations play in political representation. According to conventional expectations, party affiliation drives the behavior of representatives when they are elected under a proportional system, while majoritarian systems mute the role of party affiliation by forcing politicians to converge to the median position of their constituency. This study directly tests these predictions within a common party system by matching referenda decisions of constituents with voting behavior of their representatives who are elected either under a majoritarian or proportional system.
We identify the impact of transparency in political decision-making on the quality of political representation with a difference-in-difference strategy. The quality of political representation is measured by the observed divergence of parliamentary decisions from revealed voter preferences on identical issues. We show that full transparency of votes of individual politicians does not decrease divergence from voter preferences.
Electron microscopy techniques are applied to investigate structural properties of GaN layers selectively grown by hydride vapor phase epitaxy on crystalline and amorphous GaN seed layers deposited on (0001)Al2O3 substrates. Optimalization of the growth conditions lead to a reduction both of the stacking fault concentration and c-axis tilting in the laterally grown regions. During the lateral growth threading dislocations from the seed layer bend from vertical direction of propagation. Bending behavior depends on the type of the dislocation and on the shape of the GaN film in the initial stage of the growth. Optical properties of laterally grown regions are correlated with the high point-defect incorporation that is revealed by high-resolution electron microscopy.
Wedge Transmission Electron Microscopy has many advantages, one of which is the concentration determination in III-V semiconductors with a fairly good accuracy. This allows us to determine the concentration variation during the growth of GaInAs/InP multilayered structures and to deduce the concentration grading at the interface GaInAs/InP (As in InP) and the abruptness of the InP/GaInAs interface.
High Resolution Electron Microscopy (HREM) was used to study microstructural changes related to the CoSi/Si-CoSi/CoSi2/Si-CoSi2/Si transformations. CoSi is found to grow epitaxially on Si with Si // CoSi and < 110 >Si // < 112 >CoSi. Two CoSi non-equivalent orientations (rotated by 180° around the substrate normal) can occur in this plane. They can be clearly distinguished by HRTEM on cross-sections ( electron beam along Si). At about 500°C CoSi transforms to CoSi2. Experimental results show that the type B orientation relationship satisfying Si // CoSi is preserved after the initial stage of CoSi2 formation. At this stage an epitaxial CoSi/CoSi2/Si(111) system is obtained. The atomic scale investigation of the CoSi2/Si interface shows that a 7-fold coordination of the cobalt atoms is observed in both type A and type B epitaxies.
HREM was used to investigate the microstructure and bonding configuration at the interface between TiSi2 and Si (111). The interpretation of the micrographs requires extensive image calculations which were carried out for the first time on this very complex silicide/silicon system. Four different interface models are presented and the corresponding computed interface images are compared with the experimental image. Contrast analysis shows that a model in which a final plane of Ti abuts a layer of Si with a configuration typical of bulk Si best matches the observations. Moreover, the presence of Ti at the interface seems to stabilize a terminal plane of Si with triple dangling bonds.
The observation of III–V multilayered semiconductors on 900 cleaved wedges is an interesting alternative to the conventional TEM observation on cross-sectioned samples. It offers a fast specimen preparation, the absence of ion irradiation damage or preferential etching, and a well controlled thickness across the sample. HREM observations are used to derive the layer thickness down to the atomic level. Image simulations were calculated with EMS programs on wedges described by a supercell.
We have studied the effects of deposition conditions on the epitaxial orientation of Au or TiO2 (110) and on the atomic structure of Au/TiO2 interfaces by combined EBSD and HRTEM. Two experimental conditions were explored consisting of deposition of a 12 nim Au film at 300K followed by annealing at 770K and direct deposition of a 12 nm Au film at 770K. Deposition at 300K followed by annealing at 770K give rise to a (111)Au//(110)TiO2 epitaxial orientation relationship, while direct deposition at 700K temperature give rise to an epitaxial orientation relationship given by (112)Au//(110)TiO2. For both orientations, two epitaxial variants are observed which are twin related. The (112)Au//(110)TiO2 orientation has been found to minimize the interfacial lattice misfit while maximizing the number of Au-Ti bonds across the interface.
Among the cestodes, Echinococcus granulosus, Echinococcus multilocularis and Taenia solium represent the most dangerous parasites. Their larval stages cause the diseases cystic echinococcosis (CE), alveolar echincoccosis (AE) and cysticercosis, respectively, which exhibit considerable medical and veterinary health concerns with a profound economic impact. Others caused by other cestodes, such as species of the genera Mesocestoides and Hymenolepis, are relatively rare in humans. In this review, we will focus on E. granulosus and E. multilocularis metacestode laboratory models and will review the use of these models in the search for novel drugs that could be employed for chemotherapeutic treatment of echinococcosis. Clearly, improved therapeutic drugs are needed for the treatment of AE and CE, and this can only be achieved through the development of medium-to-high throughput screening approaches. The most recent achievements in the in vitro culture and genetic manipulation of E. multilocularis cells and metacestodes, and the accessability of the E. multilocularis genome and EST sequence information, have rendered the E. multilocularis model uniquely suited for studies on drug-efficacy and drug target identification. This could lead to the development of novel compounds for the use in chemotherapy against echinococcosis, and possibly against diseases caused by other cestodes, and potentially also trematodes.
Stellar activity has a particularly strong influence on planets at small orbital distances, such as close-in exoplanets. For such planets, we present two extreme cases of stellar variability, namely stellar coronal mass ejections and stellar wind, which both result in the planetary environment being variable on a timescale of billions of years. For both cases, direct interaction of the streaming plasma with the planetary atmosphere would entail servere consequences. In certain cases, however, the planetary atmosphere can be effectively shielded by a strong planetary magnetic field. The efficiency of this shielding is determined by the planetary magnetic dipole moment, which is difficult to constrain by either models or observations. We present different factors which influence the strength of the planetary magnetic dipole moment. Implications are discussed, including nonthermal atmospheric loss, atmospheric biomarkers, and planetary habitability.