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In vitro embryo production strategies have been considered as possible means to protect wild and endangered animal species through assisted breeding programmes. They also offer the possibility to preserve genetic material from such stock or to facilitate breeding in captivity. The relevant technologies, however, have been developed to meet the needs of oocytes and embryos of domesticated animals and their suitability for wild species remains largely unknown. This study investigated the ability of in vitro maturation procedures, designed for oocytes of domestic pigs (Sus scrofa domesticus), to support the development of oocytes from wild boar (Sus scrofa)gilts.
Porcine embryo production in vitrois providing the impetus for the development of cryopreservation strategies aimed at welfare-friendly domestic and international marketing and movement of stock in a manner that minimises risks of disease transmission. In the context of disease risks, defined media, which avoid the use of serum and other biohazardous products, are likely to become essential in the production of embryos for international markets. In preparing for this situation, the present comparative study investigated in vitronuclear maturation of porcine oocytes in the presence of either foetal calf serum (FCS) or polyvinyl alcohol (PVA). In addition, the effect of restricting the maturation time to 33 rather than 44 hours was examined.
Ovine embryos produced in synthetic oviduct fluid (SOF) medium or in coculture with granulosa cell monolayers supplemented with low (A; 120 μmol/l) and high (B; 190 μmol/l) ammonia-producing steer sera caused different degrees of fetal oversize (Carolan et al., 1998). The objective of the present study was to determine whether the effects on fetal growth induced by these sera were associated with alterations in early embryo development.
A total of 911 bovine oocytes, used in 8 replicates to test the effect of three culture treatments on embryo development, were matured and fertilized in vitro (IVF= Day 0). Presumptive zygotes were allocated on Day 1 to culture in SOF supplemented with 10% v/v steer serum (SOF+A, n=308; SOF+B, n=302) or with amino acids plus 0.4% w/v crystalline BSA (SOFaaBSA, n=301). All cultures were in 20 μl droplets under oil (38.5°C; 5% CO2, 5% O2; 4 zygotes per drop) and droplets were renewed every 48 h. Cleavage rate was recorded on Day 3. On Days 7 and 8, blastocyst yields, grade 1 and 2 blastocysts, their cell numbers (by staining with Hoechst 33342) and their stage and diameter were determined.
Supplements of dietary fat are highly effective in boosting energy intake at critical phases during the reproductive cycle. When fed to ruminants in the form of calcium salts of fatty acids, they have been shown to increase plasma cholesterol and progesterone levels (Spicer et al, 1993) which, in turn, could have beneficial effects on ovulation rate and embryo quality. In sheep, a likely reproductive state for a physiological response to a lipid supplement is during the superovulation of young animals in which the post-ovulatory steroidogenic capacity of the corpora lutea may be sub-optimal. The present study examined the effects of donor age and dietary fat on plasma progesterone concentration, and the yield and quality of embryos in superovulated Cheviot sheep.
Serum, which is routinely included in many embryo culture media, can decrease the viability of bovine and ovine embryos produced in cultures employing synthetic oviduct fluid (SOF; Kuran et al., 1999) and represents a possible route for transmission of disease. Alternative approaches include the use of chemically defined culture media but results from studies which avoid sera and its derivatives (e.g., albumin) are generally less favourable due to a lack of knowledge regarding the embryo's response to specific nutrients, most notably fatty acids. As a preliminary step towards investigating fatty acid influences on bovine embryo development in vitro, the present study examined the effect of adding palmitic acid (C16:0) to SOF plus bovine serum albumin (BSA) on the performance of this semi-defined culture medium and contrasted it with embryo production in SOF supplemented with serum.
To assess hand hygiene improvement and sustainability associated with a Breakthrough Collaborative.
Multicenter analysis of hand hygiene compliance through direct observation by trained observers.
A total of 5 publicly funded hospitals in 14 locations, with a total of 1,152 beds, in the County of Vaud, Switzerland.
In total, 59,272 opportunities for hand hygiene were monitored for the duration of the study, for an average of 5,921 per audit (range, 5,449–6,852). An 18-month Hand Hygiene Breakthrough Collaborative was conducted to implement the WHO multimodal promotional strategy including improved access to alcohol-based hand rub, education, performance measurement and feedback, reminders and communication, leadership engagement, and safety culture.
Overall hand hygiene compliance improved from 61.9% to 88.3% (P<.001) over 18 months and was sustained at 88.9% (P=.248) 12 months after the intervention. Hand hygiene compliance among physicians increased from 62% to 85% (P<.001) and finally 86% at follow-up (P=.492); for nursing staff, compliance improved from 64% to 90% (P<.001) and finally 90% at follow-up (P=.464); for physiotherapists compliance improved from 50% to 90% (P<.001) and finally 91% at follow-up (P=.619); for X-ray technicians compliance improved from 45% to 80% (P<.001) and finally 81% at follow-up (P=.686). Hand hygiene compliance also significantly increased with sustained improvement across all hand hygiene indications and all hospitals.
A rigorously conducted multicenter project combining the Breakthrough Collaborative method for its structure and the WHO multimodal strategy for content and measurement was associated with significant and substantial improvement in compliance across all professions, all hand hygiene indications, and all participating hospitals.
This research paper describes the effect of partially replacing wheat with maize grain and canola meal on milk production and body condition changes in early lactation Holstein-Friesian dairy cows consuming a grass silage-based diet over an 83-d period. Two groups of 39 cows were stratified for age, parity, historical milk yield and days in milk (DIM), and offered one of two treatment diets. The first treatment (CON) reflected a typical diet used by Western Australian dairy producers in summer and comprised (kg DM/cow per d); 8 kg of annual ryegrass silage, 6 kg of crushed wheat (provided once daily in a mixed ration), 3·6 kg of crushed lupins (provided in the milking parlour in two daily portions) and ad libitum lucerne haylage. The second treatment diet (COMP) was identical except the 6 kg of crushed wheat was replaced by 6 kg of a more complex concentrate mix (27% crushed wheat, 34% maize grain and 37% canola meal). Lucerne haylage was provided independently in the paddock to all cows, and no pasture was available throughout the experiment. The COMP group had a greater mean overall daily intake (22·5 vs 20·4 kg DM/cow) and a higher energy corrected milk (ECM) yield (29·2 vs 27·1 kg/cow; P = 0·047) than the CON cows. The difference in overall intake was caused by a higher daily intake of lucerne haylage in COMP cows (4·5 vs 2·3 kg DM/cow). The CON group had a higher concentration of milk fat (42·1 vs 39·3 g/kg; P = 0·029) than COMP cows. Milk protein yield was greater in COMP cows (P < 0·021); however, milk fat yield was unaffected by treatment. It is concluded that partially replacing wheat with canola meal and maize grain in a grass silage-based diet increases voluntary DMI of conserved forage and consequently yields of ECM and milk protein.
The ability of plants to colonize new habitats is influenced by their dependence on effective pollinators. This can be very important for plants that require specialized pollinators, especially when they disperse to islands that have low pollinator diversity. One form of specialization involves plants that require buzz-pollination, where bees must vibrate poricidal anthers at frequencies that allow pollen to be released. Pollen larceny is a phenomenon where insects ‘steal’ pollen from flowers which usually results in reduced pollination, but in some cases there can be a small contribution to pollination. Here we report pollen larceny in an endemic Fijian halictine bee Homalictus fijiensis that steals pollen by chewing anthers of the invasive weed Solanum torvum, which is a pollen-only plant requiring buzz pollination. In over nine hours of observations at six sites where H. fijiensis visited S. torvum, it never attempted to locate nectaries, it never buzzed anthers, and instead chewed anther tips, indicating an adaptation to exploit nectarless flowers with poricidal anthers without buzz-pollination. Analyses of 30 pollen loads from H. fijiensis collected from S. torvum flowers indicate 27 of these contained S. torvum pollen, ranging from 1% to 99% of total pollen, indicating it is a pollen vector for this plant. Our findings support arguments that super-generalist pollinators in island ecosystems can promote the spread of invasive plants, but go further by indicating that super-generalist strategies can extend to plants with highly specialized pollinator requirements.
Cranfield University's National Flying Laboratory Centre (NFLC) has developed a Bulldog light aircraft into a flight test facility. The facility is being used to research advanced in-flight instrumentation including fibre optic pressure and strain sensors. During the development of the test bed, Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) has been used to assist the flight test design process, including the sensor requirements. This paper describes the development of the Bulldog flight test facility, including an overview of the design and certification process, the in-flight data taken using the installed fibre optic sensor systems and lessons learned from the development programme, including potential further applications of the sensors.
To compare the energy, nutrient and food group compositions of three sources of school-day lunches among students in five secondary schools in the Republic of Ireland (ROI).
Cross-sectional study conducted between October 2012 and March 2013. Students completed self-report food diaries over two school days. The energy, nutrient, nutrient density and food group composition of school-day lunches from home, school and ‘out’ in local food outlets were compared using ANCOVA and Tukey’s Honest Significant Difference post hoc analysis.
Five secondary schools in the ROI.
Male and female students aged 15–17 years (n 305).
Six hundred and fifteen lunches (376 home lunches, 115 school lunches and 124 lunches sourced ‘out’ in the local environment) were analysed. School and ‘out’ purchased lunches were significantly higher than packed lunches from home in energy (2047 kJ (489 kcal), 2664 kJ (627 kcal), 1671 kJ (399 kcal), respectively), total fat (23·5 g, 30·1 g, 16·6 g, respectively) and free (added) sugars (12·6 g, 19·3 g, 7·4 g, respectively). More home lunches contained more fruit, wholemeal breads, cheese and red meat than lunches from school or ‘out’. Meat products, chips and high-calorie beverages were sourced more frequently at school or ‘out’ than home. Fibre and micronutrient contents of lunches from all sources were low.
Home-sourced lunches had the healthiest nutritional profile in terms of energy and macronutrients. Foods high in energy, fat and free sugars associated with school and local food outlets are of concern given the public health focus to reduce their consumption. While school food should be improved, all sources of lunches need to be considered when addressing the dietary behaviours of secondary-school students.