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Predation by Engytatus varians (Distant) adults on different development stages of the prey species Bactericera cockerelli (Sulcer) (egg, second, and third nymphal instars), Spodoptera exigua (Hübner) and Spodoptera frugiperda (J. E. Smith) (egg, first, and second larval instars) was evaluated using tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) leaflets or plants. These insects are the primary pest of several agriculturally important crops. The influence of E. varians age on the predation capacity was also analysed. Engytatus varians females consumed significantly more B. cockerelli eggs and nymphs than males. Additionally, female predators consumed significantly more second than third instar prey at two predator ages, while males consumed significantly more the second instar than third instar prey at all predator ages. In most of the cases, females also consumed significantly more S. exigua and S. frugiperda eggs than males; however, in terms of larvae consumption, this difference was observed only in some predator ages. Females consumed more the first than second instar S. exigua than males, whereas this behaviour was only observed in males when the predators were 15 and 17 days old. No significant differences were observed in the consumption of first and second instar of S. frugiperda for both sexes of the predators. Predator age did not cause any systematic effects on the predation rates of any prey species. Based on these results, we confirmed that E. varians has potential as a biological control agent for B. cockerelli and also for the Spodoptera species bioassayed.
The use of additives such as ractopamine (Rac) in pregnant sows during early-mid pregnancy is an alternative to increase foetal and progeny growth and development. However, Rac supplementation in finishing pigs can lead to behavioural and physiological changes similar to the typical stress responses. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of dietary supplementation with Rac in pregnant sows from day 25 to 50 of gestation (pre-hyperplastic stage) on piglet’s vitality, blood parameters, number, diameter and perimeter of muscle fibres in semitendinosus muscle and developmental characteristics of piglets at birth to weaning. Forty-one hybrid sows were divided into three dietary treatments: (1) control diet without Rac (control), (2) addition of 10 mg/kg of Rac (Rac10) and (3) addition of 20 mg/kg of Rac (Rac20). Higher numbers of low-vitality piglets (P<0.05) were observed in Rac-fed sows, regardless of dose, compared with the control group. Very low-density lipoprotein levels were lower in the Rac10 group when compared with the Rac20 group at day 21. Haematocrit was greater, and the mean corpuscular haemoglobin concentration was lower in piglets from Rac-fed sows. No significant statistical differences were detected regarding piglets body weight, average daily gain, blood gasometry, complete blood count and muscle fibre measurements in semitendinosus muscle. The use of Rac in pregnant sows reduced the vitality parameters of piglets but did not improve the performance from birth until weaning and did not negatively influence the haematological parameter and lipid metabolism.
This study examined (1) the association of dietary energy density from solid (EDS) and solid plus liquids (EDSL) with adiposity and cardiometabolic risk factors (CRF) in children with overweight and obesity, (2) the effect of under-reporting on the mentioned associations and (3) whether the association between ED and body composition and CRF is influenced by levels of physical activity. In a cross-sectional design, 208 overweight and obese children (8–12-year-old; 111 boys) completed two non-consecutive 24 h recalls. ED was calculated using two different approaches: EDS and EDSL. Under-reporters were determined with the Goldberg method. Body composition, anthropometry and fasting blood sample measurements were performed. Moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) was registered with accelerometers (7-d-register). Linear regressions were performed to evaluate the association of ED with the previously mentioned variables. Neither EDS nor EDSL were associated with body composition or CRF. However, when under-reporters were excluded, EDS was positively associated with BMI (P=0·019), body fat percentage (P=0·005), abdominal fat (P=0·008) and fat mass index (P=0·018), while EDSL was positively associated with body fat percentage (P=0·008) and fat mass index (P=0·026). When stratifying the group according to physical activity recommendations, the aforementioned associations were only maintained for non-compliers. Cluster analysis showed that the low-ED and high-MVPA group presented the healthiest profile for all adiposity and CRF. These findings could partly explain inconsistencies in literature, as we found that different ED calculations entail distinct results. Physical activity levels and excluding under-reporters greatly influence the associations between ED and adiposity in children with overweight and obesity.
We have developed a technique for determining the atomic elastic constants from measurements of the Debye-Waller factors. The Debye-Waller factors are obtained by Rietveld refinement of time-of-flight neutron diffraction data and interpreted in terms of an atomic Debye-Waller temperature. The method is applicable to powders and to materials that must be encapsulated for safety or environmental reasons. We will illustrate our technique with applications to actinide metals, to metallic hydrides and to high-temperature superconductors.
The present commentary contains a clear and simple guide designed to identify ultra-processed foods. It responds to the growing interest in ultra-processed foods among policy makers, academic researchers, health professionals, journalists and consumers concerned to devise policies, investigate dietary patterns, advise people, prepare media coverage, and when buying food and checking labels in shops or at home. Ultra-processed foods are defined within the NOVA classification system, which groups foods according to the extent and purpose of industrial processing. Processes enabling the manufacture of ultra-processed foods include the fractioning of whole foods into substances, chemical modifications of these substances, assembly of unmodified and modified food substances, frequent use of cosmetic additives and sophisticated packaging. Processes and ingredients used to manufacture ultra-processed foods are designed to create highly profitable (low-cost ingredients, long shelf-life, emphatic branding), convenient (ready-to-consume), hyper-palatable products liable to displace all other NOVA food groups, notably unprocessed or minimally processed foods. A practical way to identify an ultra-processed product is to check to see if its list of ingredients contains at least one item characteristic of the NOVA ultra-processed food group, which is to say, either food substances never or rarely used in kitchens (such as high-fructose corn syrup, hydrogenated or interesterified oils, and hydrolysed proteins), or classes of additives designed to make the final product palatable or more appealing (such as flavours, flavour enhancers, colours, emulsifiers, emulsifying salts, sweeteners, thickeners, and anti-foaming, bulking, carbonating, foaming, gelling and glazing agents).
The anthropogenic modification of natural landscapes, and the consequent changes in the environmental conditions and resources availability at multiple spatial scales can affect complex species interactions involving key-stone species such as bat–parasite interactions. In this study, we aimed to identify the drivers potentially influencing host–bat fly interactions at different spatial scales (at the host, vegetation stand and landscape level), in a tropical anthropogenic landscape. For this purpose, we mist-netted phyllostomid and moormopid bats and collected the bat flies (streblids) parasitizing them in 10 sites representing secondary and old growth forest. In general, the variation in fly communities largely mirrored the variation in bat communities as a result of the high level of specialization characterizing host–bat fly interaction networks. Nevertheless, we observed that: (1) bats roosting dynamics can shape bat–streblid interactions, modulating parasite prevalence and the intensity of infestation; (2) a degraded matrix could favor crowding and consequently the exchange of ectoparasites among bat species, lessening the level of specialization of the interaction networks and promoting novel interactions; and (3) bat–fly interaction can also be shaped by the dilution effect, as a decrease in bat diversity could be associated with a potential increase in the dissemination and prevalence of streblids.
Pathological worry is a hallmark feature of generalised anxiety disorder (GAD), associated with dysfunctional emotional processing. The ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC) is involved in the regulation of such processes, but the link between vmPFC emotional responses and pathological v. adaptive worry has not yet been examined.
To study the association between worry and vmPFC activity evoked by the processing of learned safety and threat signals.
In total, 27 unmedicated patients with GAD and 56 healthy controls (HC) underwent a differential fear conditioning paradigm during functional magnetic resonance imaging.
Compared to HC, the GAD group demonstrated reduced vmPFC activation to safety signals and no safety–threat processing differentiation. This response was positively correlated with worry severity in GAD, whereas the same variables showed a negative and weak correlation in HC.
Poor vmPFC safety–threat differentiation might characterise GAD, and its distinctive association with GAD worries suggests a neural-based qualitative difference between healthy and pathological worries.
In this study, we report the characterization of a 304L stainless steel cylindrical projectile produced by additive manufacturing. The projectile was compressively deformed using a Taylor Anvil Gas Gun, leading to a huge strain gradient along the axis of the deformed cylinder. Spatially resolved neutron diffraction measurements on the HIgh Pressure Preferred Orientation time-of-flight diffractometer (HIPPO) and Spectrometer for Materials Research at Temperature and Stress diffractometer (SMARTS) beamlines at the Los Alamos Neutron Science CEnter (LANSCE) with Rietveld and single-peak analysis were used to quantitatively evaluate the volume fractions of the α, γ, and ε phases as well as residual strain and texture. The texture of the γ phase is consistent with uniaxial compression, while the α texture can be explained by the Kurdjumov–Sachs relationship from the γ texture after deformation. This indicates that the material first deformed in the γ phase and subsequently transformed at larger strains. The ε phase was only found in volumes close to the undeformed material with a texture connected to the γ texture by the Shoji–Nishiyama orientation relationship. This allows us to conclude that the ε phase occurs as an intermediate phase at lower strain, and is superseded by the α phase when strain increases further. We found a proportionality between the root-mean-squared microstrain of the γ phase, dominated by the dislocation density, with the α volume fraction, consistent with strain-induced martensite α formation. Knowledge of the sample volume with the ε phase from the neutron diffraction analysis allowed us to identify the ε phase by electron back scatter diffraction analysis, complementing the neutron diffraction analysis with characterization on the grain level.
The clinical and pathologic characterisation of two fatal cases of tick-borne rickettsiosis in rural (El Valle) and urban (City of Panama) Panama are described. Clinical and autopsy findings were non-specific, but the molecular analysis was used to identify Rickettsia rickettsii in both cases. No ticks were collected in El Valle, while in the urban case, R. rickettsii was detected in Rhipicephalus sanguineus s.l., representing the first molecular finding in this tick in Panama and Central America.
Nine species of the gall-associated doryctine genus Allorhogas Gahan (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) are described from Brazil (A. clidemiae Martínez and Zaldívar-Riverón new species, A. granivorus Zaldívar-Riverón and Martínez new species, A. mineiro Zaldívar-Riverón and Martínez new species, and A. vulgaris Zaldívar-Riverón and Martínez new species) and Costa Rica (A. brevithorax Zaldívar-Riverón and Martínez new species, A. pallidus Martínez and Zaldívar-Riverón new species, A. psychotria Zaldívar-Riverón and Martínez new species, A. punctatus Martínez and Zaldívar-Riverón new species, and A. tico Martínez and Zaldívar-Riverón new species). We provide host plant records for the described species, including information that reveals that at least three of them feed on seeds. Allorhogas granivorus had previously been confirmed to represent a natural enemy of the invasive weed Miconia calvescens de Candolle (Melastomataceae). Updated keys to the species of Allorhogas from Brazil and Costa Rica are provided.
This work presents the results of physiological studies developed to understand modifications linked to the reduction of seed dormancy provoked by domestication processes. The experiments performed compared wild and domesticated Cucurbita subspecies and their hybrids developed by reciprocal crossings. Seeds of two accessions of the wild subspecies presented dormancy, but it was largely reduced in seeds from the domesticated genotype, and partially reverted in hybrids, especially in those obtained when the domesticated genotype was used as the mother plant. In addition, naked embryos of all subspecies did not display dormancy when incubation was performed at 28°C, but embryo germination was progressively reduced only in the wild genotype under decreasing incubation temperatures (22 and 16°C). In the embryos, abscisic acid (ABA) concentrations were similar in both domesticated and wild subspecies, whereas in the seed coat, it was threefold higher in the wild subspecies. The naked embryos from the wild subspecies were far more responsive to ABA than those from the domesticated subspecies. These results indicate that dormancy in the wild subspecies is imposed by the seed coat tissues and that this effect is mediated by their high ABA content and the sensitivity of the embryos to ABA. These physiological aspects were apparently removed by domestication along with the temperature-dependent response for germination.
The diffusive strip method (DSM) is a near-exact numerical method for mixing computations initially developed in two dimensions (Meunier & Villermaux, J. Fluid Mech., vol. 662, 2010, pp. 134–172). The method, which consists of following stretched material lines to compute the resulting scalar field a posteriori, is extended here to three-dimensional flows. We describe the procedure and its three-dimensional peculiarity, which relies on the Lagrangian advection of a triangulated surface from which the stretching rate is extracted to infer the scalar field. The method is first validated at moderate Péclet number against a classical pseudospectral method solving the advection–diffusion equation for a Batchelor vortex, and then applied to a simple Taylor–Couette experimental configuration with non-rotating boundary conditions at the top-end disk, bottom-end disk and outer cylinder. This motion, producing an elaborate although controlled steady three-dimensional flow, relies on Ekman pumping arising from the rotation of the inner cylinder. A recurrent two-cell structure is separated by the horizontal mid-plane and formed by stream tubes shaped as nested tori under laminar flow conditions. A scalar blob in the flow experiences a Lagrangian oscillating dynamics undergoing stretchings and compressions, driving the mixing process. The DSM enables the calculation of the blob elongation and scalar concentration distributions through a single variable computation along the advected blob surface, capturing the rich evolution observed in the experiments. Interestingly, the mixing process in this axisymmetric and steady three-dimensional flow leads to a linear growth of surfaces in time similar to the one obtained in a two-dimensional shear. The potentialities, limits and extension of the method to more general flows are finally discussed.
Traditionally, personalised nutrition was delivered at an individual level. However, the concept of delivering tailored dietary advice at a group level through the identification of metabotypes or groups of metabolically similar individuals has emerged. Although this approach to personalised nutrition looks promising, further work is needed to examine this concept across a wider population group. Therefore, the objectives of this study are to: (1) identify metabotypes in a European population and (2) develop targeted dietary advice solutions for these metabotypes. Using data from the Food4Me study (n 1607), k-means cluster analysis revealed the presence of three metabolically distinct clusters based on twenty-seven metabolic markers including cholesterol, individual fatty acids and carotenoids. Cluster 2 was identified as a metabolically healthy metabotype as these individuals had the highest Omega-3 Index (6·56 (sd 1·29) %), carotenoids (2·15 (sd 0·71) µm) and lowest total saturated fat levels. On the basis of its fatty acid profile, cluster 1 was characterised as a metabolically unhealthy cluster. Targeted dietary advice solutions were developed per cluster using a decision tree approach. Testing of the approach was performed by comparison with the personalised dietary advice, delivered by nutritionists to Food4Me study participants (n 180). Excellent agreement was observed between the targeted and individualised approaches with an average match of 82 % at the level of delivery of the same dietary message. Future work should ascertain whether this proposed method could be utilised in a healthcare setting, for the rapid and efficient delivery of tailored dietary advice solutions.
Objectives: Cross-sectional and longitudinal evidence from largely non-Hispanic White cohorts suggests that positive psychosocial factors, particularly self-efficacy and social support, may protect against late-life cognitive decline. Identifying potentially protective factors in racial/ethnic minority elders is of high importance due to their increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease. The overall goal of this study was to characterize cross-sectional associations between positive psychosocial factors and cognitive domains among Black, Hispanic, and White older adults. Methods: A total of 548 older adults (41% Black, 28% Hispanic, 31% White) in the Washington Heights-Inwood Columbia Aging Project completed cognitive and psychosocial measures from the NIH Toolbox and standard neuropsychological tests. Multiple-group regressions were used to compare cross-sectional associations between positive psychosocial factors and cognition across racial/ethnic groups, independent of demographics, depressive symptoms, and physical health. Results: Positive associations between self-efficacy and language did not significantly differ across race/ethnicity, although the bivariate association between self-efficacy and language was not significant among Hispanics. Additional positive associations were observed for Whites and Blacks, but not Hispanics. Negative associations between emotional support and purpose in life and working memory were seen only in Hispanics. Conclusions: Results confirm and extend the link between self-efficacy and cognition in late life, particularly for White and Black older adults. Previous studies on positive psychosocial factors in cognitive aging may not be generalizable to Hispanics. Longitudinal follow-up is needed to determine whether negative relationships between certain psychosocial factors and cognition in Hispanics reflect reverse causation, threshold effects, and/or negative aspects of having a strong social network. (JINS, 2018, 24, 294–304)