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Highlighting the dispersal ecology of parasites is important for understanding epidemiological, demographic and coevolutionary aspects of host–parasite interactions. Yet, critical aspects of the dispersal stage of parasites, such as longevity and the factors influencing it, are poorly known. Here we study the lifespan of the dispersal stage of an ectoparasitic dipteran, Carnus hemapterus, and the impact of gender, body size and food provisioning on longevity. We found that freshly emerged imagoes survive at most less than 4 days. Longevity increased with body size and, since this parasite exhibits sexual size dimorphism, the bigger females lived longer than males. However, controlling for body size suggests that males lived relatively longer than females. Furthermore, a humid environment and food provisioning (flowers) significantly increased individual life spans. We discuss the relative importance of spatial and temporal dispersal in relation to the infectious potential of this parasite.
Host range and parasite specificity determine key epidemiological, ecological and evolutionary aspects of host–parasite interactions. Parasites are usually classified as generalists or specialists based on the number of hosts they feed on. Yet, the requirements of the various stages of a parasite may influence the suitability of a given host species. Here, we investigate the generalist nature of three common ectoparasites (the dipteran Carnus hemapterus and two species of louse flies, Pseudolynchia canariensis and Ornithophila metallica), exploiting two avian host species (the European roller Coracias garrulus and the Rock pigeon Columba livia), that frequently occupy the same breeding sites. We explore the prevalence and abundance of both the infective and the puparial stages of the ectoparasites in both host species. Strong preferences of Pseudolynchia canariensis for pigeons and of Carnus hemapterus for rollers were found. Moderate prevalence of Ornithophila metallica was found in rollers but this louse fly avoided pigeons. In some cases, the infestation patterns observed for imagoes and puparia were consistent whereas in other cases host preferences inferred from imagoes differed from the ones suggested by puparia. We propose that the adult stages of these ectoparasites are more specialist than reported and that the requirements of non-infective stages can restrict the effective host range of some parasites.
Differentiation of niche by means of resource partitioning facilitates coexistence of species with similar requirements. Here we analyse the association between different habitats (i.e. nest types) and two Diptera species of the poorly known Family Carnidae that coexist during their larval and pupal stage in the nests of troglodytic bird species. We also describe for the first time the puparium of Hemeromyia anthracina and Hemeromyia longirostris and offer morphometric data of the puparia of these two species and of Carnus hemapterus. Both the smaller size and the occurrence of well-developed spiracles allow easy discrimination of the puparium of C. hemapterus. The puparia of both Hemeromyia species is very similar and only differ in the distance between the small spiracles. Hemeromyia anthracina and C. hemapterus coexisted in nest boxes but the former species did not occur in natural sandy cavities where, in turn, C. hemapterus was highly prevalent. Carnus hemapterus prevalence did not differ between nest boxes and natural cavities but its abundance was higher in the first type of nest. This study shows clear associations of the two dipteran species with specific types of nests. Yet, some conditions are seemingly acceptable for both species.
Ranking trait was used as a selection criterion for competition horses to estimate racing performance. In the literature the most common approaches to estimate breeding values are the linear or threshold statistical models. However, recent studies have shown that a Thurstonian approach was able to fix the race effect (competitive level of the horses that participate in the same race), thus suggesting a better prediction accuracy of breeding values for ranking trait. The aim of this study was to compare the predictability of linear, threshold and Thurstonian approaches for genetic evaluation of ranking in endurance horses. For this purpose, eight genetic models were used for each approach with different combinations of random effects: rider, rider–horse interaction and environmental permanent effect. All genetic models included gender, age and race as systematic effects. The database that was used contained 4065 ranking records from 966 horses and that for the pedigree contained 8733 animals (47% Arabian horses), with an estimated heritability around 0.10 for the ranking trait. The prediction ability of the models for racing performance was evaluated using a cross-validation approach. The average correlation between real and predicted performances across genetic models was around 0.25 for threshold, 0.58 for linear and 0.60 for Thurstonian approaches. Although no significant differences were found between models within approaches, the best genetic model included: the rider and rider–horse random effects for threshold, only rider and environmental permanent effects for linear approach and all random effects for Thurstonian approach. The absolute correlations of predicted breeding values among models were higher between threshold and Thurstonian: 0.90, 0.91 and 0.88 for all animals, top 20% and top 5% best animals. For rank correlations these figures were 0.85, 0.84 and 0.86. The lower values were those between linear and threshold approaches (0.65, 0.62 and 0.51). In conclusion, the Thurstonian approach is recommended for the routine genetic evaluations for ranking in endurance horses.
Precision agriculture (PA) requires reasonably homogeneous areas for site-specific management. This work explores the applicability of digital terrain classes obtained from a digital elevation model derived from UAV-acquired images, to define management units in in a relative flat area of about 6 ha. Elevation, together with other terrain variables such as: slope degree, profile curvature, plan curvature, topographic wetness index, sediment transport index, were clustered using the Fuzzy Kohonen Clustering Network (FKCN). Four terrain classes were obtained. The result was compared with a map produced by a classification of soil properties previously interpolated by ordinary kriging. The results suggest that areas for site-specific management can be defined from terrain classes based on environmental covariates, saving time and cost in comparison with interpolation of soil variables.
This paper focusses on a set of anthropomorphic figurines. It suggests that realistic human proportion and canonical body posture were pursued in the carving of these objects as a means of expressing ideology, in a context of diversified forms of manipulation of bodies in funerary practices. It is argued that, against a background of predominantly schematic art, the more realistic and canonical anthropomorphic representation of the human body was used to communicate a set of ideological statements in a more controlled and immediate way, in a period of ontological and cosmological transition.
To date, the spatial distribution pattern and density of Brazil nut trees in logged forest stands is unclear across the Amazon basin. We asked the following questions: (1) What are the densities and spatial distributions of Brazil nut juveniles (10 ≤ dbh < 40 cm) and adults (≥ 40 cm dbh) in three selectively logged Brazil nut concessions (1413 ha sampled) in Madre de Dios, Peru; (2) What is the spatial relationship between adults and juveniles (10 ≤ dbh < 30 cm); and (3) What is the spatial relationship between juveniles (10 ≤ dbh <30 cm) and cut stumps (≥ 10 y)? Spatial analyses were conducted using statistics derived from Ripley's K function. Juveniles were aggregated in all three concessions. Results for adult populations rejected the null hypothesis of a random distribution among trees ≥ 40 cm dbh. We did not find an attraction between juveniles and cut-stump locations, nor between adults and juveniles. The strong peaks of aggregation for juveniles and adult Brazil nuts in this study occurred at long distances (300–900 m), suggesting multiple tree canopy gaps as drivers of spatial distribution patterns, either via natural or anthropogenic sources. Our data contribute to a more thorough understanding of Brazil nut population structure in disturbed forests in south-western Amazonia.
Making a morphological pre-selection of Pura Raza Español horses (PRE) for dressage is a challenging task within its current breeding program. The aim of our research was to design an early genetic selection morphological linear traits index to improve dressage performance, using 26 morphological linear traits and six dressage traits (walk, trot, canter, submission, general impression – partial scores – and total score) as selection criteria. The data set included morphological linear traits of 10 127 PRE (4159 males and 5968 females) collected between 2008 and 2013 (one record per horse) and 19 095 dressage traits of 1545 PRE (1476 males and 69 females; 12.4 records of average) collected between 2004 and 2014. A univariate animal model was applied to predict the breeding values (PBV). A partial least squares regression analysis was used to select the most predictive morphological linear traits PBV on the dressage traits PBV. According to the Wold Criterion, the 13 morphological linear traits (width of head, head–neck junction, upper neck line, neck–body junction, width of chest, angle of shoulder, lateral angle of knee, frontal angle of knee, cannon bone perimeter, length of croup, angle of croup, ischium–stifle distance and lateral hock angle) most closely related to total score PBV, partial scores PBV and gait scores PBV (walk, trot and canter) were selected. A multivariate genetic analysis was performed among the 13 morphological linear traits selected and the six dressage traits to estimate the genetic parameters. After it, the selection index theory was used to compute the expected genetic response using different strategies. The expected genetic response of total score PBV (0.76), partial scores PBV (0.04) and gait scores PBV (0.03) as selection objectives using morphological linear traits PBV as criteria selection were positive, but lower than that obtained using dressage traits PBV (1.80, 0.16 and 0.14 for total score PBV, partial scores PBV and gait scores PBV) or dressage traits PBV and morphological linear traits PBV (2.97, 0.16 and 0.15 for total score PBV, partial scores PBV and gait scores PBV), as selection criteria. This suggests that it is possible to preselect the PRE without dressage traits PBV using as selection criteria the morphological linear traits PBV, but the expected genetic response will be lower.
Omicron Andromedae is a multiple system of at least four stars: a B ↔Be star (component A), a spectroscopic binary (components B1–B2) and a close companion (component a). According to several studies (see Hill et al. 1988, 1989):
-the distance between A and the B1–B2 system decreased from 0.39″ in 1975 to 0.25″ in 1987 (McAlister and Hartkopf 1988)
-the few previous speckle measurements of component a have shown the possibility of a 3.7 years orbit around A, according to the 1975 to 1984 observations (mean distance 0.05″). The calculations with this 3.7 yr orbit lead to the prediction of a maximum distance of 0.77″ at 1992.738, i.e. at the end of september 1992, with a North-South orientation.
For the past 15 years, a succession of stable isotope studies have documented the abrupt dietary transition from the Mesolithic to the Neolithic in Western and Northern Europe. Portugal, with its Late Mesolithic shell middens and burials apparently coexisting with the earliest Neolithic, further illustrates the nature of that transition. Individuals from Neolithic contexts there had significantly different diets to their Mesolithic counterparts. No evidence was found for a transitional phase between the marine-oriented Mesolithic subsistence regimes and the domesticated, terrestrial Neolithic diet. Two later Neolithic individuals, however, showed evidence for partial reliance on marine or aquatic foods. This raises questions about the possible persistence of marine dietary regimes beyond the Mesolithic period. This article is followed by a brief note by Mary Jackes and David Lubell.
Stegophorus macronectes (Johnston & Mawson, 1942) is a gastrointestinal parasite found in Antarctic seabirds. The original description of the species, which was based only on females, is poor and fragmented with some unclear diagnostic characters. This study provides new morphometric and molecular data on this previously poorly described parasite. Nuclear rDNA sequences (18S, 5.8S, 28S and internal transcribed spacer (ITS) regions) were isolated from S. macronectes specimens collected from the chinstrap penguin Pygoscelis antarctica Forster on Deception Island, Antarctica. Using 18S rDNA sequences, phylogenetic analyses (maximum likelihood, maximum parsimony and Bayesian inference) of the order Spirurida were performed to determine the phylogenetic location of this species. Primer pairs of the ITS regions were designed for genus-level identification of specimens, regardless of their cycle, as an alternative to coprological methods. The utility of this molecular method for identification of morphologically altered specimens is also discussed.
This paper presents the design, kinematics, dynamics and control of a low-cost parallel rehabilitation robot developed at the Universitat Politècnica de Valencia. Several position and force controllers have been tested to ensure accurate tracking performances. An orthopedic boot, equipped with a force sensor, has been placed over the platform of the parallel robot to perform exercises for injured ankles. Passive, active-assistive and active-resistive exercises have been implemented to train dorsi/plantar flexion, inversion and eversion ankle movements. In order to implement the controllers, the component-based middleware Orocos has been used with the advantage over other solutions that the whole scheme control can be implemented modularly. These modules are independent and can be configured and reconfigured in both configuration and runtime. This means that no specific knowledge is needed by medical staff, for example, to carry out rehabilitation exercises using this low-cost parallel robot. The integration between Orocos and ROS, with a CAD model displaying the actual position of the rehabilitation robot in real time, makes it possible to develop a teleoperation application. In addition, a teleoperated rehabilitation exercise can be performed by a specialist using a Wiimote (or any other Bluetooth device).
Mental disorders in the elderly are common, with a 12-month prevalence in the community ranging from 8.54% to 26.4%. Unfortunately, many mental disorders are unrecognized, untreated, and associated with poor health outcomes. The aim of this paper is to describe the prevalence of mental disorders in the elderly primary care (PC) population and its associated factors by age groups.
Cross-sectional survey, conducted in 77 PC centers in Catalonia (Spain), 1,192 patients over 65 years old. The prevalence of mental disorders was assessed through face-to-face evaluations using the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV Axis I Disorders, Research Version (SCID-I-RV) and the Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview (MINI); chronic physical conditions were noted using a checklist; and disability through the Sheehan Disability Scales (SDS).
Nearly 20% of participants had a mental disorder in the previous 12 months. Anxiety disorders were the most frequent, (10.9%) (95% CI = 8.2–14.4), followed by mood disorders (7.4%) (95% CI = 5.7–9.5). Being female, greater perceived stress and having mental health/emotional problems as the main reason for consultation were associated with the presence of any mental disorder. There were no differences in prevalence across age groups. Somatic comorbidity was not associated with the presence of mental disorders.
Mental disorders are highly prevalent among the elderly in PC in Spain. Efforts are needed to develop strategies to reduce this prevalence and improve the well-being of the elderly. Based on our results, we thought it might be useful to assess perceived stress regularly in PC, focusing on people who consult for emotional distress, or that have greater perceived stress.
The possibility of using quantitative kinematic traits as indirect selection criteria for sport performance could be beneficial to perform an early genetic evaluation of the animals. The genetic parameters for objectively measured kinematic traits under field conditions have been estimated for the first time, in order to potentially use these traits as indicators of gait quality in future selection of the Lusitano breed. The repeatability within three different types of training (dressage, bullfighting and untrained) was also discussed. A total of 176 males (4 to 14 years old) were recorded at trot in hand using a 3D videographic system. The speed and 10 kinematic traits were studied (one temporal, two linear and seven angular variables). The genetic parameters of the kinematic variables were estimated using VCE software. The heritability estimates were moderate to high (0.18 to 0.53). The stride length and the forelimb angular variables presented the highest heritabilities (0.49 to 0.53), whereas the hindlimb angular variables revealed the lowest values (0.18 to 0.40). More than half of the genetic correlations were moderately to highly positive (mostly 0.20 to 0.70; up to 0.88 between hindlimb traits). The dressage and bullfighting groups presented the highest repeatabilities (over 0.6) in the majority of the traits, maybe because of the acquired gait regularity expected in animals subjected to specific training, and suggesting a greater influence of the individuals over the kinematic traits studied in these two subpopulations than in the untrained subpopulation. The longer swing phase duration and the larger range of motion of the elbow, hock and pelvis joints observed in the dressage group may indicate a better gait quality of this group, according to FEI (International Equestrian Federation) standards. The bullfighting and untrained groups were more similar to each other in terms of kinematic traits. Selection of young horses for characteristics such as stride length and the hindlimbs traits can apparently contribute to further genetic improvement of the performance of Lusitano breed.
The aims of this study were, first, to evaluate eye temperature (ET) with infrared thermography and heart rate (HR) to measure stress in horses during show jumping competitions and their relationship with competition results, and second, to evaluate the influence of different extrinsic and intrinsic factors of the horse on the stress measurements analysed. One hundred and seventy-three Spanish Sport Horses were analysed for ET and HR, and these measurements were taken 3 h before the competition, just after and 3 h after it. Two interval measurements were also assessed for each parameter. Positive significant correlations were found between ET and HR, measured before (r=0.23), just after competition (r=0.28) and for the later interval (r=0.26), whereas negative correlations with competition results were found only for ET when measured just after competing (r=−0.25). Two intrinsic factors (genetic line and age) and no extrinsic factors showed significant differences for ET, whereas one intrinsic factor (age) and two extrinsic factors (journey duration and number of training hours) showed significant differences for HR. The marginal means showed significantly higher ET values for the Anglo-Arab genetic line and for 5-year-old animals. HR values were significantly higher for 4-year-old animals, for horses which had travelled 4 to 6 h and for horses that had 3 to 6 h of daily training. This study suggests that, although ET and HR seemed to share a similar physiological basis, the factors that most influenced each parameter were different. Finally, ET seems to be a suitable tool for assessing stress during show jumping competitions in horses.
Understanding the population dynamics and co-evolution of host–parasite systems requires detailed knowledge of their phenology which, in turn, requires a deep knowledge of the effect of abiotic factors on the life cycles of organisms. Temperature is known to be a key environmental influence that participates in the regulation of diapause. Yet, not much is known about the effect of temperature on the free-living stages of true parasites and how it may influence host–parasite interactions. Here we experimentally study the effect of ambient temperature on overwintering pupae of Carnus hemapterus (Diptera, Carnidae), an ectoparasitic fly of various bird species. We also test whether chilling is a prerequisite for completion of diapause in this species. In the course of three winter seasons we experimentally exposed carnid pupae from nests of various host species to spring temperatures with and without chilling and recorded the emergence patterns in experimental and control groups. Experimental groups showed an advanced emergence date, a lower emergence rate and, consequently, a protracted emergence period. Chilling had no obvious effect on the start of emergence but it did advance the mean emergence date, shortened the length of the emergence period when compared with the control treatment and increased the emergence rate when compared with the spring treatment. This study identifies an environmental cue, namely temperature during the free-living stage, affecting the emergence of a widespread parasite and demonstrates the plasticity of diapause in this parasite. Our findings are of potential significance in understanding host–parasite interactions.
The novel aim of this study was to describe the reference values of different haematological and biochemical parameters in the Spanish purebred horse (Andalusian, SPB) in each of the stages of a programmed exercise on a treadmill system, and to establish heritability and genetic correlations for these haematological and biochemical parameters. For this, 94 young SPB male horses (4.22 ± 2.27 years old) were used. An increasing intensity exercise test at 4, 5, 6 and 7 m/s was carried out on a treadmill (6% inclination). Total red blood cells, total white blood cells, neutrophils and lymphocytes counts; haematocrit, haemoglobin, lactate, uric acid, creatinine and total plasma proteins concentrations and aspartate transaminase, lactate dehydrogenase, creatine-quinase activities were determined. To conclude: (i) the reference values for each parameter were determined for each of the exercise test stages (ii) all the parameters analysed manifested a medium-high heritability and a high repeatability. These results will, in the near future, determine the measuring guidelines for improving the SPB horse's athletic ability on an objective treadmill system and for selecting these animals in response to those parameters.
Within the ICD and DSM review processes there is growing debate on the
future classification and status of adjustment disorders, even though
evidence on this clinical entity is scant, particularly outside
To estimate the prevalence of adjustment disorders in primary care; to
explore whether there are differences between primary care patients with
adjustment disorders and those with other mental disorders; and to
describe the recognition and treatment of adjustment disorders by general
Participants were drawn from a cross-sectional survey of a representative
sample of 3815 patients from 77 primary healthcare centres in Catalonia.
The prevalence of current adjustment disorders and subtypes were assessed
face to face using the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV Axis I
Disorders (SCID-I). Multilevel logistic regressions were conducted to
assess differences between adjustment disorders and other mental
disorders. Recognition and treatment of adjustment disorders by GPs were
assessed through a review of patients' computerised clinical
The prevalence of adjustment disorders was 2.94%. Patients with
adjustment disorders had higher mental quality-of-life scores than
patients with major depressive disorder but lower than patients without
mental disorder. Self-perceived stress was also higher in adjustment
disorders compared with those with anxiety disorders and those without
mental disorder. Recognition of adjustment disorders by GPs was low: only
2 of the 110 cases identified using the SCID-I were detected by the GP.
Among those with adjustment disorders, 37% had at least one psychotropic
Adjustment disorder shows a distinct profile as an intermediate category
between no mental disorder and affective disorders (depression and