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This is a copy of the slides presented at the meeting but not formally written up for the volume.
In order to characterize and control the adhesive behaviors of nanometer scaled stimuli-responsible gel particles designed for oral peptide delivery, their interaction with artificial mucin layer in the small intestinal solutions was determined by the colloid probe atomic force microscope method. The prepared nanometer scaled gel particles with a core-shell structure were designed to exhibit behaviors responsive to temperature and pH in solutions, consequently protect the incorporated peptide drug under harsh acidic conditions in the stomach, adhere and penetrate to the mucin layer in the small intestine, and thereafter release the drugs. Spherical agglomerates of the nano-gel particles with several micron meters in diameter were prepared by the spray freeze drying method and adhered on the top of tip of commercial atomic force microscope. The interaction between the artificial mucin layer and nano-gel surface with different molecular structure of shell determined by the colloid probe method depended on pH and counter-ion concentration of the solution. Based on the possible transition of the surface-microstructure of nano-gel particles following the pH change and the measured results from the colloid probe AFM method, the relationship between surface interaction and microstructure of nano-gel was discussed.
Eosinophilic myocarditis is rare in children, and consequently, it is difficult to diagnose eosinophilic myocarditis rapidly. We report the clinical course of acute eosinophilic myocarditis with pericarditis in two adolescent boys and their associated electrocardiograms. The two patients, 13- and 14-year-old boys, developed cardiomegaly and chest pain with vomiting. On examination by two-dimensional echocardiography, thickening of the ventricular septum and a pericardial effusion were detected. The eosinophil count had increased by the pericardial effusion. Acute eosinophilic myocarditis often complicates a moderate to severe pericardial effusion owing to acute pericarditis. A cellular fraction analysis of the pericardial effusion is easy and useful for the diagnosis of eosinophilic myocarditis. Some serial changes in the electrocardiogram occur during each stage of acute eosinophilic myocarditis. They are induced by eosinophilic granules, which are capable of inducing tissue damage and dysfunction, and those changes in the electrocardiogram resemble the changes after an acute myocardial infarction. It is important to know the characteristics of eosinophilic myocarditis in order to prevent lethal complications.
Animals, including arthropods, are one health threat that can be affected by disasters. This institution-based study aimed to assess trends in Hymenoptera stings following the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster.
We reviewed the medical records of patients with hymenopteran stings who visited Minamisoma Municipal General Hospital, located 23 km from Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, from March 2005 to March 2016. Patient and sting characteristics of post-disaster patients were examined, and the annual incidence of hospital visits for hymenopteran stings was compared with the pre-disaster baseline, calculating an incidence rate ratio (IRR) for each year.
We identified 152 pre-disaster patients (2005-2011) and 222 post-disaster patients (2011-2016). In the post-disaster period, 160 males (72.1%) were identified, with a median age of 59 years (range: 2-89 years). A total of 45 patients (20.3%) were decontamination workers. Post-disaster increases were found in the IRR for hymenopteran stings, peaking first in 2011 (IRR: 2.8; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.9-4.2) and later in 2014 (IRR: 3.2; 95% CI: 2.4-4.3) and 2015 (IRR 3.3; 95% CI: 2.5-4.4).
Long-term increases were found in the IRR of hospital visits for hymenopteran stings in an institution affected by the Fukushima nuclear disaster. Decontamination workers appear to have been particularly affected by this phenomenon. Better disaster field worker monitoring and education about potential environmental health hazards may help to identify and prevent worker exposure to insect stings and other vectors in these settings. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2017;11:545–551)
We collected charcoal fragments during an archaeological excavation at the Tell Ghanem al-Ali site, located on the lowest terrace of the middle Euphrates River, and measured their radiocarbon ages with accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS). Two trenches, Square-1 and Square-2, were dug on the slope of the tell; 8 building levels were detected in the Square-2 trench. In total, 31 charcoal samples were collected from the 2 trenches, and their calibrated ages ranged from 3100–2900 cal BC at the lowest building level to 2400–2050 cal BC at the uppermost layers of the mound, and concentrated in the period 2650–2450 cal BC. The pottery fragments collected on the surface of the mound before the excavation survey was started, as well as those collected from the sediment layers during the excavation, were assigned on the basis of typological sequences to the Early Bronze Age (EB)-III and EB-IV periods. Thus, the concentrated dates (2650–2450 cal BC) obtained by 14C dating are consistent with the age estimated by archaeological contexts. However, the oldest dates of the lowest level (level-7) go back to 3100–2900 cal BC, and these dates may suggest the existence of the human residence prior to the EB period at the site, and may therefore lead to a revision of the oldest age limit of the EB period currently accepted in the region.
Alteration of cement–bentonite interfaces and accompanying changes in diffusivity of tritiated water (HTO) was investigated experimentally using intact, hardened cement-paste specimens. The alteration by carbonate solution was accompanied by mineralogical changes at the interface and a decrease in the HTO diffusivity to ∼70 ± 7%of the initial value after a 180-day period. Another alteration in contact with compacted bentonite was accompanied by mineralogical changes at the interface and a decrease in the HTO diffusivity to ∼71 ± 10% of the initial value after a 600-day period. The changes in the diffusivity were considerably less than those observed for mixed specimens of ground, granulated hardened cement paste and bentonite where the diffusivity decreased to 20% of the initial value over 180 days. The results were extrapolated to 15 y under simple assumptions and showed good agreement with those observed in the cement–argillite interface at Tournemire URL (France). Such an explanation enhances confidence in the assessment of the alteration of cement-bentonite systems and might be a basis for using the data and models obtained in the long-term assessment of radioactive waste disposal.
The highly alkaline environment induced by cementitious materials in a deep geological disposal system of high-level radioactive waste is likely to alter montmorillonite, the main constituent of bentonite buffer materials. Over long time periods, the alteration may cause the physical and/or chemical barrier functions of the buffer materials to deteriorate. In order to evaluate the long-term alteration behaviour, the dissolution rate, RA (kgm−3 s−1), of compacted pure montmorillonite (Kunipia-F) was investigated experimentally under conditions of hydroxide ion concentration of 0.10—1.0 mol dm−3 at temperatures of 50—90°C. The dissolution rate data, including those from a previous study at 130°C, were formulated as a function of the activity of hydroxide ions, aOH− (mol dm−3), and temperature, T (K), and expressed as RA = 104.5·(aOH−)1.3·e−55000/RT by multiple regression analysis, where R is the gas constant. The dissolution rate of montmorillonite was greater in the compacted montmorillonite than in the compacted sand-bentonite mixtures. The difference can be explained by considering the decrease in aOH− in the mixtures accompanied by dissolution of accessory minerals such as quartz and chalcedony. The dissolution rate model developed for pure montmorillonite is expected to be applied to bentonite mixtures if quantification of the decrease in aOH− is achieved somehow.
Haemaphysalis longicornis (Acari: Ixodidae) is one of the most common and important arthropod disease vectors in Japan, carrying Japanese spotted fever and bovine theileriosis. The recent expansion of sika deer (Cervus nippon, Artiodactyla: Cervidae) populations, the most common wild host of H. longicornis, has also caused concern about increasing the risk of vector-borne diseases in Japan. We used generalized linear mixed model analysis to determine the relative contribution of deer density and other biological and abiotic factors on the abundance of H. longicornis ticks questing at each developmental stage. A total of 6223 H. longicornis adults, nymphs, and larvae were collected from 70 sites in three regions of central Japan. The abundance of questing adult and nymphal ticks was associated with deer density and other biotic and abiotic factors. However, the abundance of questing larvae showed no association with deer density but did show an association with other biotic and abiotic factors. These findings show that a high density of deer along with other biotic and abiotic factors is associated with increased risk of vector-borne diseases through amplified local abundance of questing nymphal and adult H. longicornis. Further, questing larvae abundance is likely regulated by environmental conditions and is likely correlated with survival potential or the distribution of other host species.
Highly alkaline environments induced by cementitious materials in radioactive waste repositories are likely to alter montmorillonite, the main constituent of bentonite buffer materials, and are likely to cause the physical and/or chemical properties of the buffer materials to deteriorate. The deterioration may cause variation in hydraulic conductivity of the buffer. However, empirical data on the variation of hydraulic conductivity are scarce, mainly because the alteration of compacted buffer materials, sand-bentonite mixtures, is extremely slow. In this study, laboratory experiments were performed to observe changes in hydraulic conductivity of sand-bentonite mixtures, accompanied by their alkaline alteration, using NaOH-based solutions at 80–90°C. Series-1 multi-step alteration/water conduction experiments resulted in an increase in the hydraulic conductivity by one order of magnitude over a 200 day period. Series-2 single step alteration/water conduction experiments revealed a decrease in the montmorillonite contents with time and a resulting increase in the hydraulic conductivity by 30 times over the 67 day period. Series-3 simultaneous alteration/water conduction experiment also demonstrated an increase in the hydraulic conductivity by 30 times over the 150 day period. The results proved that the alkaline alteration of the bentonite buffer can increase the hydraulic conductivity. The data obtained in this study are useful for verification of the code that will be used for assessing the alteration.
Le formidable développement urbain du Japon au XVIIe siècle provoqua la prolifération de populations de mendiants que les autorités guerrières des cités cherchèrent à contrôler. Dans le cas d’Ôsaka, certains groupes discriminés et relégués dans des ghettos, les hinin, avaient fait de la mendicité leur principale activité professionnelle. Mais il existait d’autres types de quêteurs qui prenaient un prétexte religieux pour recueillir les aumônes, parfois en se livrant à diverses performances. Ces individus réduits à la mendicité, mais qui n’étaient pas à l’origine issus de groupes discriminés, étaient en concurrence les uns avec les autres pour capter la charité des citadins. Aussi, bien qu’écartés en apparence de toute forme de propriété, ces individus cherchaient parfois à se regrouper et à former des associations sous le patronage d’une institution religieuse reconnue, afin de défendre leurs intérêts et de les faire reconnaître par les autorités de la ville, soucieuses de leur côté de mieux encadrer ces populations suspectes.
This study assessed the prediction that individuals are able to use the knowledge from their first language (L1) in processing the comparable sound contrasts in an unknown language. Two languages, Arabic and Japanese, which utilize vowel duration contrastively, were examined. Native Arabic (NA) and native Japanese (NJ) listeners' discrimination accuracy for native (known) and nonnative (unknown) vowel length contrasts was assessed in an AXB discrimination test. A group of Australian English (OZ) speakers who do not know either Arabic or Japanese participated as a control group. Despite the expectation that native listeners positively transfer and generalize the L1 knowledge to process unknown languages with equivalent phonetic characteristics, both the NA and NJ groups were clearly less accurate in discriminating vowel length contrasts in unknown languages. Further, they showed no advantage over the OZ listeners who have limited experience with vowel length contrasts in their L1. These results suggest that, not only for stop place contrasts examined previously, but also for vowel length contrasts, experience with specific phonetic contrasts may not be sufficient for attaining truly nativelike discrimination accuracy.
Mapping of polarization distributions in Pb(Zr,Ti)O3 ferroelectric capacitors with sizes down to 0.5 × 0.5 μm has been studied using scanning probe microscope (SPM) with detection of piezoelectric response through the top electrode. A well reproducible anomaly in polarization distribution namely elevated polarization at the edges and inverse polarization in the center has been observed for the FeCaps of several μm size. This polarization pattern is found to be insensitive to the poling voltage polarity and voltage stress prehistory but strongly dependent on the FeCAP size. Specifically, the polarization anomaly tends to disappear as the FeCAP size scales down to the submicron range. Tentative interpretation of this phenomenon in terms of strain-induced phase transitions in combination with depolarization effects is discussed.
Crevice-corrosion tests were performed in gamma-ray irradiated high-temperature water of 288 °C on Type 316L stainless steel. The gamma-ray dose rate was about 30 kGy h−1. Tested specimen surfaces were analyzed using SEM, laser Raman spectroscopy and TEM/EDX. Experimental data were presented in order to show the differences made by the irradiation and crevice-shape simulated structure. Both gamma-ray irradiation and crevice-shape simulated structure changed the corrosion phenomena. On the gamma-ray irradiated crevice-shape simulated surface, α-Fe2O3 particles more than 5 μm in diameter were observed. It suggested that corrosion environment on the crevice-shape simulated surface became severer by gamma-ray irradiation.
Brillouin and Raman spectra of a 0.71Pb(Ni1/3Nb2/3)O3-0.29PbTiO3 single crystal were measured in two light scattering geometries to elucidate the origins of central peaks that is related to the dynamics of the polar nanoregions. Two Lorentzian-type central peaks exist in the Brillouin spectra. The shape and the full width at half maximum of the broader peak in Brillouin spectra are almost same as that observed in Raman spectra. This indicates that two relaxations occur in the polar nanoregions. These two processes might be originated from the different switching directions of polarization.
Development of aluminum gate thin-film transistors (TFT) is described. This TFT is fabricated based on an aluminum oxide insulator technology, in which aluminum is anodically oxidized to form Al2O3. The use of aluminum is effective in reducing the delay of the gate busline of the display panels due to its low resistivity. The Al2O3 films formed by an anodic oxidation, block the growth of hillocks during TFT fabrication which is one of the biggest issues of aluminum metallization. With this technology it is possible to design and fabricate TFT/LCD panels larger than 30 inches and with more than 1000 scan lines.
The thermal conductivity of aluminum nitride is significantly affected by its purity. We used CaCO3 as an additive to decrease the oxygen content. Calcium-aluminate is formed by the reaction of the aluminum nitride powder oxide layers and CaO during firing. We investigated the influence of firing gas pressure on the microstructure and thermal conductivity of aluminum nitride. The thermal conductivity reached 270 W/m°K when 4 wt% CaO was added and firing gas pressure was 700 kPa. Under these conditions, the amount of remaining oxygen was at its minimum and the grain size of the aluminum nitride was at its maximum.
Thin silicide layers are found to be formed through solid state reaction between hydrogenated amorphous silicon(a-Si:H) and metals. The method of formation of the silicide layer is very simple: deposition of metal on top of amorphous silicon layer and annealing and etching of the residual metal layer. The reaction kinetics and properties of this layer are described. The thickness of this silicide layer is estimated to be 5 nm. Accordingly, it can be used as a transparent electrode in a-Si:H photodiodes. Photodiodes using this semitransparent electrode have as good optical and electrical properties as conventional a-Si:H photodiodes using ITO(indium tin oxide). Schottky barrier characteristics are also de-scribed.
A new A4-size contact-type image sensor with 8 elements per millimeter (1,728 elements) was developed by using amorphous silicon alloy pin photodiodes as the light receiving elements. The matrix switching method is employed for signal reading. This method can read the signals from all of the 1,728 photodiodes using a 54 (54-channel input) x 32 (32.channel output) matrix switching scheme. It is advantageous in that the required input and output external circuits can be simplified. To prevent signal crosstalk between the diodes in the matrix, amorphous silicon alloy pin diodes, which are made in the same process as the photodiodes for maintaining a low cost, are connected in series to each photodiode in reverse polarity as blocking diodes.
To achieve superior signal-to-noise ratio and response at the same time, amorphous silicon alloy pin diodes are optimized to satisfy both a high photo-to-dark ratio and a high rectification ratio. The image sensor can operate at up to 2 MHz signal reading clock, maintaining a signal-to-noise ratio of over 24 dB under 0. 1–1x sec exposure.
Analyses of a floating zone (FZ) crystal growth system with a radio frequency (RF) induction heating are carried out. The electromagnetic and temperature fields, and surface interfaces are solved for numerically. Finite element methods are used for the calculation of the temperature fields and interfaces and the hybrid finite element and boundary element methods are used for the calculation of the electromagnetic field. The calculation domain is divided into eleven regions, each of which, except for the RF coil region, require a coordinate transformation. In the present study, the silicon FZ growth system ,where the diameter of both feed-rod and single crystal were set to be 1cm was computed. The Lorentz force is found to play an important role in determining the melt free surface shape and the molten zone length. The effect of the current density, frequency of RF coil and crystal growth rate are investigated.