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A cross-sectional study on six dairy farms was conducted to ascertain the occurrence of carbapenem-resistant Escherichia coli in calves. Two-hundred and seventy-nine isolates of E. coli were recovered from 90 faecal samples from apparently healthy (45) and diarrhoeal (45) calves. The isolates were screened for phenotypic susceptibility to carbapenems and production of metallo β-lactamase, as well as five carbapenemase resistance genes by PCR, and overexpression of efflux pumps. Eighty-one isolates (29.03%) were resistant to at least one of three carbapenem antibiotics [meropenem (23.30%), imipenem (2.15%) and ertapenem (1.43%)], and one isolate was positive for the blaVIM gene which was located on an Incl1 plasmid of a novel sequence type (ST 297) by multilocus sequence typing. The majority (83.95%) of isolates had an active efflux pump. Calves housed on concrete floors were approximately seven times more likely to acquire meropenem-resistant isolates than those housed on earthen floors (95% CI 1.27–41.54). In India, carbapenem drugs are not used in food animal treatment, hence carbapenem-resistant strains in calves possibly originate from the natural environment or human contact and is of public health importance. To our knowledge, this is the first report of blaVIM carbapenemases gene in calves from India.
Unavailability of irrigation water for early sowing has remained a constant problem in cold arid deserts of Ladakh. In order to get a solution to this problem, a 2-yr farmers’ participatory research trial with best bet agronomic management on artificial glacier water harvesting technology was conducted. The technology involves collecting water from natural glaciers that melt during late December. The water is diverted toward a shed constructed with stone embankments set up at regular intervals. The area is chosen where there is minimum interference of solar radiation, generally between two mountain slopes or ridge that is on the leeward side. The melted water is that melts from the natural glacier impeded by the embankments and get frozen here. This frozen water starts melting in late March and is used for both pre sowing and initial crop water requirement. It also ensures early sowing of wheat by creating additional 45-day window which leads to introduction of long- and medium-duration wheat varieties to replace decades old locally grown short-duration varieties. The work was initiated with a benchmark survey of 100 farmers to get an understanding of present irrigation scenario, crop management practices and date of sowing. Data from 99 farmer participating trial of wheat conducted after or from bench mark survey clearly indicated that the effect of water shortage can be seen on yield and yield attributing characters due to unavailability of pre sowing irrigation and water requirement at imperative growth stages and may also lead to terminal heat stress in wheat crop. Out of total number of irrigations applied, initial two irrigations can be compensated by artificial glacier water harvesting technique, leading to a revolution in the agriculture scenario of the tribal population by introduction of long- and medium-duration wheat varieties in cold arid desert of Ladakh for the very first time. It was observed that wheat seeding done in first fortnight of April gave better yields in comparison to late seeded wheat. Moreover, the long-duration varieties (LDVs) or medium-duration varieties (MDVs) sown under late condition gave better yield in comparison to locally grown short-duration varieties sown at same time. Yield potential of LDVs and MDVs of wheat under late sowing was found quite low in comparison to early-sown wheat, still when compared with the performance of locally grown wheat the yields were more even if the local varieties were sown early. The outcome of this study will help the farmers of tribal, cold arid community in harvesting better wheat yields by timely sowing of the wheat crop accompanied with better bet agronomic management practices. Government initiative is further required to ensure better outreach of complete crop management strategies to the tribal farming community of the region in order to ensure food security and improve their socioeconomic status.
Indian rivers originating in the Himalaya depend on seasonal snow-cover melt during crucial summer months. The seasonal snow cover was monitored using Advanced Wide Field Sensor (AWiFS) data of the Indian Remote Sensing Satellite (IRS) and using the Normalized Difference Snow Index (NDSI) algorithm. The investigation was carried out for a period of 3 years (2004/05, 2005/06 and 2006/07) between October and June. A total of 28 sub-basins of the Ganga and Indus river basins were monitored at intervals of 5 or 10 days. Approximately 1500 AWiFS scenes were analyzed. A combination of area–altitude distribution and snow map was used to estimate the distribution of snow cover in altitude zones for the individual basins and for the western and central Himalaya. Hypsographic curve and snow-free area was used to estimate monthly snow-line elevation. The lowest snow-line altitude in the winters of 2004/05, 2005/06 and 2006/07 was observed at 2480 ma.s.l. on 25 February 2005. In Ravi basin for the year 2004/05, snow accumulation and ablation were continuous processes throughout the winter. Even in the middle of winter, the snow area was reduced from 90% to 55%. Similar trends were observed for 2005/06 and 2007/08. In Bhaga basin, snowmelt was observed in the early part of the winter, i.e. in December, and no significant melting was observed between January and April.
In resource-constrained environments, appropriately employing triage in disaster situations is crucial. Although both case-based learning (CBL) and simulation exercises (SEs) commonly are utilized in teaching disaster preparedness to adult learners, there is no substantial evidence supporting one as a more efficacious methodology. This randomized controlled trial (RCT) evaluated the effectiveness of CBL versus SEs in addition to standard didactic instruction in knowledge attainment pertaining to disaster triage preparedness.
This RCT was performed during a one-day disaster preparedness course in Lucknow, India during October 2014. Following provision of informed consent, nursing trainees were randomized to knowledge assessment after didactic teaching (control group); didactic plus CBL (Intervention Group 1); or didactic plus SE (Intervention Group 2). The educational curriculum used the topical focus of triage processes during disaster situations. Cases for the educational intervention sessions were scripted, identical between modalities, and employed structured debriefing. Trained live actors were used for SEs. After primary assessment, the groups underwent crossover to take part in the alternative educational modality and were re-assessed. Two standardized multiple-choice question batteries, encompassing key core content, were used for assessments. A sample size of 48 participants was calculated to detect a ≥20% change in mean knowledge score (α=0.05; power=80%). Robustness of randomization was evaluated using X2, anova, and t-tests. Mean knowledge attainment scores were compared using one- and two-sample t-tests for intergroup and intragroup analyses, respectively.
Among 60 enrolled participants, 88.3% completed follow-up. No significant differences in participant characteristics existed between randomization arms. Mean baseline knowledge score in the control group was 43.8% (standard deviation=11.0%). Case-based learning training resulted in a significant increase in relative knowledge scores at 20.8% (P=0.003) and 10.3% (P=.033) in intergroup and intragroup analyses, respectively. As compared to control, SEs did not significantly alter knowledge attainment scores with an average score increase of 6.6% (P=.396). In crossover intra-arm analysis, SEs were found to result in a 26.0% decrement in mean assessment score (P < .001).
Among nursing trainees assessed in this RCT, the CBL modality was superior to SEs in short-term disaster preparedness educational translation. Simulation exercises resulted in no detectable improvement in knowledge attainment in this population, suggesting that CBL may be utilized preferentially for adult learners in similar disaster training settings.
AluisioAR, DanielP, GrockA, FreedmanJ, SinghA, PapanagnouD, ArquillaB. Case-based Learning Outperformed Simulation Exercises in Disaster Preparedness Education Among Nursing Trainees in India: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2016;31(5):516–523.
Genetic diversity and relationship of 92 bread wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) genotypes from India and exotic collections were examined using simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers and phenotypic traits to identify new sources of diversity that could accelerate the development of improved wheat varieties better suited to meet the challenges posed by heat stress in India. Genetic diversity assessed by using 82 SSR markers was compared with diversity evaluated using five physiological and six agronomic traits under the heat stress condition. A total of 248 alleles were detected, with a range of two to eight alleles per locus. The average polymorphic information content value was 0.37, with a range of 0.04 (cfd9) to 0.68 (wmc339). The heat susceptibility index was determined for grain yield per spike, and the genotypes were grouped into four categories. Two dendrograms that were constructed based on phenotypic and molecular analysis using UPGMA (unweighted pair group method with arithmetic mean) were found to be topologically different. Genotypes characterized as highly heat tolerant were distributed among all the SSR-based cluster groups. This implies that the genetic basis of heat stress tolerance in these genotypes is different, thereby enabling wheat breeders to combine these diverse sources of genetic variability to improve heat tolerance in their breeding programmes.
The present study was conducted to determine the elemental concentration and bacterial presence in the ocean on the two sides of Brøggerhalvøya, a peninsula in Svalbard. Sediments from 25 different locations were collected and subjected to elemental analysis using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICPMS). In total, 21 elements were analysed. The elements in their decreasing order of concentrations on the Kongsfjorden side of Brøggerhalvøya were Fe> Mn> Ba > V > Zn > Sr > Rb > Cr > Li > Ni > As > Pb > Cu > Co > Cs >Ag > Be > U> Bi >Tl > Cd while that for Forlandsendet side of Brøggerhalvøya they were Fe > Ba >Mn > V> Sr > Zn > Rb > Cr > Li > Ni > Pb > Cu > As > Co > Cs > Be > U> Tl > Bi > Cd. On the other hand, at a coastal outcrop, elements in their decreasing order of concentration were Fe > Mn > Cr > Sr > Ba > Rb > Cr > Zn > V > Rb > Ni > Li > Co > Cu > As > Pb > Cs > Be > Cd > Tl > U > Bi. AMS dates confirmed the age of outcrop sediment to be 12,496 to 42,500 BP. The crustal enrichment factor calculated for all the elements with reference to Fe values, demonstrates that the elements have derived from a crustal source. Total bacterial counts ranged from 3.30 × 105 to 3.02 × 106 per gm soil sediment. Culturable bacterial counts in these sediments were between 2.00 × 102 to 2.09 × 105 CFU's per gm. Overall comparison showed high Fe and Mn concentrations around Brøggerhalvøya, due to the presence of specific bacteria which play key roles in metal cycling and carry out biogeochemical transformations.
The present study was conducted to measure the elemental concentration and bacterial deposition in the firn-cores at the Midre Lovénbreen glacier, Svalbard. Firn-cores up to 1m deep were collected and divided into three subsections. These were subjected to elemental analysis using inductively coupled plasma mass spectroscopy (ICPMS). In all 20 elements were analysed. The crustal enrichment factors calculated for these elements on the basis of Fe values, demonstrate that the elements have derived from both crustal and anthropogenic sources. For certain elements there also exists a possibility of input from sea salt spray. Total bacterial counts in these firn samples ranged from 1.03 × 105 to 3.67 × 105 per ml of meltwater. Culturability of these bacterial cells, in comparison to the total count was very low. At 4°C the maximum culturability was <1.4% of the total count while at 15°C it was still lower (~1%).
In the present study, we report the enhancement in figure-of-merit (ZT) of nanostructured n-type Silicon-Germanium (Si80Ge20) thermoelectric alloy synthesized using high energy ball milling followed by spark plasma sintering (SPS). After 90 h of ball milling of elemental powders of Si, Ge and P (2 at.%), a complete dissolution of Ge in Si matrix has been observed forming the nanostructured n-type Si80Ge20 alloy powder. X-ray diffraction analysis (XRD) confirmed the crystallite size of the host matrix (Si) to be ∼7 nm and also indicated the formation of an additional phase of SiP nano-precipitates after SPS. HR-TEM analysis revealed that the nano-grained network was retained post-sintering with a crystallite size of size of 9 nm and also confirmed the SiP precipitates formation with a size of 4 to 6 nm. As a result, a very low thermal conductivity of ∼2.3W/mK at 900°C has been observed for Si80Ge20 alloy primarily due to scattering of phonons by nanostructured grains and nano-scaled SiP precipitates which further contribute to this scattering mechanism. Electrical conductivity values of SiGe sintered alloy are slightly lower to that of reported values in literature. This was attributed to the formation of SiP which creates a compositional difference between the grain boundary region and the grain region, leading to a chemical potential difference at interface and the grain region. Figure-of-merit (ZT) of n-type Si80Ge20 nanostructured alloy was found to be ≈1.5 at 900°C, which is the highest reported so far at this temperature.
The groundwater in some parts of north India is generally saline and not suitable for drinking. However, it can be used for growing salt-tolerant crop plants. To explore the potential of using saline groundwater for farm production, a field experiment was conducted at Shahpur village, near Hisar in Haryana State, India, to study the effect of different qualities of irrigation water on mustard (Brassica juncea, cv. RH–30) crop growth, yield, water use efficiency and soil salinity. Treatments consisted of combinations of irrigation with saline groundwater (electrical conductivity (EC) 7.48 dS m−1), and a good quality canal water (EC 0.4 dS m−1) applied either alone, as blends or in alternate applications. In all treatments, canal water was used for pre-sowing irrigation. In mustard cultivation, saline groundwater with an EC of 7.48 dS m−1 can be used safely to supplement all post-sowing irrigations with marginal decline in crop yield. Irrigation with saline groundwater gave a yield as high as 95% of the optimum crop yield obtained with fresh canal water. The temporal variation in salinity showed that mustard yield responds to the average salinity of the soil during the growing season. Thus saline groundwater is a good water source to exploit for supplemental irrigation.
We examine the association of a venture capital (VC) firm’s reputation with the post-initial public offering (IPO) long-run performance of its portfolio firms. We find that VC reputation, measured by the past market share of VC-backed IPOs, has significant positive associations with long-run firm performance measures. While more reputable VCs initially select better-quality firms, more reputable VCs continue to be associated with superior long-run performance, even after controlling for VC selectivity. We find that more reputable VCs exhibit more active post-IPO involvement in the corporate governance of their portfolio firms, and this continued VC involvement positively influences post-IPO firm performance.
Using fast imaging technique, the effect of transverse magnetic field on the shape and dynamics of the lithium plasma plume has been studied. Enhancement in the overall emission intensity as well as appearance of distinct structures (lobes) in the plasma plume in the presence of magnetic field has been observed. By introducing a variable magnetic field, the influence of J × B force in expanding plasma plume across the transverse magnetic field has been explored. It appears that J × B force does not has a substantial role in the observed structures in the present case rather different atomic processes, which get affected due to change in plasma parameters, are responsible for appearance of these structures.
Effect of intensity profile of the ablating laser on the dynamics of laser-blow-off (LBO) plume has been studied by fast imaging technique. This work emphasizes the geometrical aspect of the LBO plume, which is an important parameter for various applications. Visualization of the expanding plume reveals that geometrical shape and directionality (divergence) of the plume are highly dependent on the laser intensity profile. Present results demonstrate that the Gaussian profile laser produces a well-collimated, low divergence plasma plume as compared to the plume formed by a top-hat profile laser. The sequence of film removal processes is invoked to explain the role of energy density profile of the ablating laser in LBO mechanism.
The effect of a variable magnetic field on Li plasma produced by laser-blow-off technique has been studied experimentally. Enhancement in the intensity of the spectral lines from neutrals was observed, which varied with the magnetic field. The enhancement in emission from Li I was found to differ for the two different transitions viz. 670.8 nm (2s 2S1/2 ← 2p 2P3/2,1/2) and 610.3 nm (2p 2P1/2,3/2 ← 3d 2P3/2,5/2), which is more prominent for 670.8 nm. Conventionally, the enhancement in emission in the presence of the magnetic field has been explained in terms of radiative recombination. However, the atomic analysis by computing photon emissivity coefficients in the present case has revealed for the first time that it is due to electron impact excitation.
We investigate the pricing of 4,989 equity IPOs with offer dates between 1981 and 2000. Approximately three-fourths of these IPOs have integer offer prices. Average initial returns for IPOs with integer offer prices are significantly higher (24.5%) than those priced on the fraction of the dollar (8.1%). This result is robust through time and after conditioning for other effects known to influence initial returns. We hypothesize that integer vs. fractional dollar IPOs are the result of negotiations between the issuing firm and underwriter. Under this negotiation hypothesis, the frequency of integer pricing should be an increasing function of the offer price and the degree of uncertainty surrounding the value of the firm. Empirical evidence, supportive of the negotiation hypothesis, is presented.
Ofer and Natarajan (1987) report negative, statistically significant cumulative average abnormal returns over five years following convertible bond calls. We show that these results are obtained only if returns preceding the call dates are used for market model parameter estimation. Returns preceding calls tend to be positive and unusually large. This means that predicted post-call returns, based on pre-call parameter estimates, are biased upward. Consequently, the corresponding abnormal returns are biased downward. We also discuss a corrected test statistic. We conclude that the evidence does not indicate market inefficiency in the stock price reaction to convertible calls.
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