To send content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about sending content to .
To send content items to your Kindle, first ensure firstname.lastname@example.org
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
Millions of micro electro mechanical system sensors are fabricated each year using an ultra-clean process that allows for a vacuum-encapsulated cavity. These devices have a multi-layer structure that contains hidden layers with highly doped silicon, which makes common imaging techniques ineffective. Thus, examining device features post-fabrication, and testing, is a significant challenge. Here, we use a combination of micro- and nano-scale x-ray computed tomography to study device features and assess failure mechanisms in such devices without destroying the ultra-clean cavity. This provides a unique opportunity to examine surfaces and trace failure mechanisms to specific steps in the fabrication process.
Ascaris sp. is a soil-transmitted helminth (STH) significantly affecting the health of human and swine populations. Health inequities and poverty, with resulting deficiencies in water, sanitation and hygiene, are directly associated with Ascaris lumbricoides prevalence in humans. Resource constraints also lead to small-scale livestock production under unsanitary conditions. Free-ranging pigs, for instance, are exposed to a number of infectious agents, among which Ascaris suum is one of the most common. Under these conditions, close proximity between people and pigs can result in cross-contamination; that is, pigs harbouring human Ascaris and vice versa. Moreover, the potential interbreeding between these two Ascaris species has been demonstrated. The present study analysed Ascaris worms obtained from children and pigs in Honduras. Adult worms were collected from stool samples of children after pharmacological treatment, and from pigs’ intestines after slaughter for commercial purposes at a local abattoir. A nuclear ribosomal internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region was amplified by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and digested with a restriction enzyme in order to separate putative human- and pig-derived Ascaris isolates. PCR products were also sequenced, and cladograms were constructed. All parasites isolated from children showed the typical human-derived genotype of Ascaris, whereas 91% of parasites from pigs showed the expected pig-derived genotype. Cross-infections between hosts were not demonstrated in this study. Nine per cent of pig-derived worms showed a restriction band pattern highly suggestive of a hybrid human–pig Ascaris genotype. These results contribute to the understanding of ascariasis epidemiology and its zoonotic potential in a highly endemic region.
Gliricidia sepium (Jacq.) Steud. is widely used as a high-protein supplementary food for ruminants in many parts of the tropics. Native to Central America and Mexico, it has become widely naturalized elsewhere but the introduced populations are mostly of unknown origin and uncertain quality. Studies of the genetic resources from the native range, under a research programme at OFI, have shown great variation between populations in yield (Dunsdon and Simons, 1996). The objective of the research described here was to investigate whether there is also important genetic variation in fodder quality, to inform decisions on future distribution of ‘superior’ germplasm of G. sepium under the OFI programme.
Aflatoxin contamination of food can cause liver cancer in humans and animals. Identification of aflatoxin risk areas allows farmers to adapt management strategies before planting, during growth and at harvest. Aflatoxin contamination is driven by high temperatures and drought conditions and crops grown on light textured soil in the south eastern USA are at particular risk. Aflatoxin assessment is expensive so a role of extension services in precision farming is to identify the areas most at risk of contamination so that farmers can adapt irrigation or planting strategies. This paper extends a county-level risk factors approach developed by Kerry et al. (2017) by investigating the use of NDVI and thermal IR data to indicate drought stress and thus aflatoxin contamination risk at the sub-county level.
Aflatoxin is a fungal toxin contaminating corn and causing liver cancer in humans and animals. Contamination is driven by high temperatures and drought. Aflatoxin assessment is expensive so extension services need to identify high risk areas so irrigation, planting strategies and corn varieties can be adapted. This research presents a web-based decision support tool for risk illustrated with a case study from southern Georgia. The tool employs the approach, developed by Kerry et al. (2017b) where exceedance of key thresholds in temperatures, rainfall, soil type and corn production are used to determine risk. The tool also includes NDVI to indicate drought stress and could be further expanded to include new risk factors and adapted to other crops.
A Q fever outbreak was declared in February 2016 in a company that manufactures hoists and chains and therefore with no apparent occupational-associated risk. Coxiella burnetii infection was diagnosed by serology in eight of the 29 workers of the company; seven of them had fever or flu-like signs and five had pneumonia, one requiring hospitalisation. A further case of C. burnetii pneumonia was diagnosed in a local resident. Real-time PCR (RTi–PCR) showed a widespread distribution of C. burnetii DNA in dust samples collected from the plant facilities, thus confirming the exposure of workers to the infection inside the factory. Epidemiological investigations identified a goat flock with high C. burnetii seroprevalence and active shedding which was owned and managed by one of the workers of the company as possible source of infection. Genotyping by multispacer sequence typing (MST) and a 10-loci single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) discrimination using RTi–PCR identified the same genotype (MST18 and SNP type 8, respectively) in the farm and the factory. These results confirmed the link between the goat farm and the outbreak and allowed the identification of the source of infection. The circumstances and possible vehicles for the bacteria entering the factory are discussed.
Cortical thickness measurement offers an index of brain development processes. In healthy individuals, cortical thickness is reduced with increasing age and is related to cognitive decline. Cortical thinning has been reported in schizophrenia. Whether cortical thickness changes differently over time in patients and its impact on outcome remain unanswered.
Data were examined from 109 patients and 76 healthy controls drawn from the Santander Longitudinal Study of first-episode schizophrenia for whom adequate structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) data were available (n = 555 scans). Clinical and cognitive assessments and MRIs were acquired at three regular time points during a 3-year follow-up period. We investigated likely progressive cortical thickness changes in schizophrenia during the first 3 years after initiating antipsychotic treatment. The effects of cortical thickness changes on cognitive and clinical variables were also examined along with the impact of potential confounding factors.
There were significant diagnoses × scan time interaction main effects for total cortical thickness (F1,309.1 = 4.60, p = 0.033) and frontal cortical thickness (F1,310.6 = 5.30, p = 0.022), reflecting a lesser thinning over time in patients. Clinical and cognitive outcome was not associated with progressive cortical changes during the early years of the illness.
Cortical thickness abnormalities do not unswervingly progress, at least throughout the first years of the illness. Previous studies have suggested that modifiable factors may partly account for cortical thickness abnormalities. Therefore, the importance of implementing practical actions that may modify those factors and improve them over the course of the illness should be highlighted.
Visible derivative spectroscopy (VDS) analysis of sediment from Cleland Lake, Southeastern British Columbia provides a reconstruction of paleolimnological productivity and hydrologic change during the past 14,000 calibrated 14C years before present (cal yr BP). The first five principal components (PC) of the VDS data explain 97% of the variance in the VDS data set. Four PCs correlate with standard reflectance derivative spectra for diatom, dinoflagellate algae, and cyanophyte pigments that record ecological change, while two PCs are paleohydrologic indicators. Dinoflagellate algae are predominant from 11,600 to 8600 cal yr BP then decrease to low levels after ~ 8500 cal yr BP. PCs 3–5 represent variations in cyanophyte abundance and exhibit peaks from 14,000 to 11,600, 14,000 to 9500, and 6100 to 5400 cal yr BP, respectively. Conditions shifted toward favoring diatoms around 9400 and lasted until 170 cal yr BP. Higher dinoflagellate-related pigment concentrations suggest a lower lake level from 11,600 to 8600 cal yr BP, followed by higher water levels and wetter conditions after 8500 cal yr BP. We propose that drier conditions transitioning from the late glacial into the Holocene were caused by summer insolation-driven, non-linear feedbacks between the northern hemisphere subtropical high-pressure systems, vegetation, and soil moisture.
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.
The historical monuments such as cathedrals, public buildings and so on, are a fundamental part of artistic heritage of a country. They reflect, ultimately, much of its culture and history. For several decades, their aspect has been seriously changed by graffiti, which clearly endangers their preservation state and causes loss of their esthetic appearance and historic value. This damages seriously the self-esteem of residents who witness the continued and strong degradation of their cultural heritage. The aim of this work is to study the removal of graffiti from a characteristic stone which is used in Morelia (México) as the raw material for architectural monuments, using a high power diode laser treatment. We concluded that continuous wave regime leads to better results than modulated wave regime; additionally, a two laser passes process demonstrated a high performance.
In the present work nanostructures of manganese dioxide have been synthesized and characterized as potential catalysts for Li-air batteries. The R-MnO2 nanourchin-shaped catalyst was synthesized by mild hydrothermal conditions under autogeneous pressure. X-ray powder diffraction (XRD) was used to confirm the formation of single R-MnO2. The microstructure of the obtained nanostructures was investigated by scanning and transmission electron microscopy (SEM and TEM) showing the presence of acicular manganese oxide aggregates (5-10 nm wide) which tend to form spherical clusters, taking on an urchin-shaped form of roughly 6 microns diameter. The cyclability analyses reveal an enhanced performance and efficiency for the batteries with higher amounts of catalyst. This catalyst is thought to promote alternative reaction pathways in the Li2CO3 decomposition which attenuate the instability of the electrolyte and/or carbon electrode during the discharge resulting in an improved cyclability.
Schizophrenia is a chronic brain disorder associated with structural brain abnormalities already present at the onset of the illness. Whether these brain abnormalities might progress over time is still under debate.
The aim of this study was to investigate likely progressive brain volume changes in schizophrenia during the first 3 years after initiating antipsychotic treatment. The study included 109 patients with a schizophrenia spectrum disorder and a control group of 76 healthy subjects. Subjects received detailed clinical and cognitive assessment and structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) at regular time points during a 3-year follow-up period. The effects of brain changes on cognitive and clinical variables were examined along with the impact of potential confounding factors.
Overall, patients and healthy controls exhibited a similar pattern of brain volume changes. However, patients showed a significant lower progressive decrease in the volume of the caudate nucleus than control subjects (F1,307.2 = 2.12, p = 0.035), with healthy subjects showing a greater reduction than patients during the follow-up period. Clinical and cognitive outcomes were not associated with progressive brain volume changes during the early years of the illness.
Brain volume abnormalities that have been consistently observed at the onset of non-affective psychosis may not inevitably progress, at least over the first years of the illness. Taking together with clinical and cognitive longitudinal data, our findings, showing a lack of brain deterioration in a substantial number of individuals, suggest a less pessimistic and more reassuring perception of the illness.
Opal particles, with diameter ca. 80 nm, were synthesized by the Stöber method. Samples were exposed to 100 Gy of beta particle irradiation and its thermoluminescence (TL) emission was recorded. TL response presents good reproducibility, standard deviation 1 %. The glow curve displays two TL peaks 86 and 400 °C and the afterglow (AG) phenomenon is observed immediately after irradiation (< 150°C). The synthetic opal-C exhibits a linear dependence of AG response as function of dose from 0.25 to 8 Gy. This dose range is of interest for personal and clinical dosimetry. Moreover, a previous study indicates that cytotoxic and genotoxic effects caused by opal nanoparticles, did not induce unrepairable DNA damage neither a cellular harm. Therefore, our results show synthetic opal-C is a material useful for in vivo radiation dosimetry.
Fractal dimension of the microstructure of AISI 316L steel (17 Cr, 12.7 Ni, 2.1 Mo, 1. 5 Mn, 0.01 C) with different degrees of strain were obtained from Richardson plots of grain boundary perimeter against magnification. Grain boundaries were revealed using conventional metallographic techniques and measurements were taken with the aid of an automatic image analizer (Quantimet 520) attached to an optical microscope. The magnifications used were 50, 100, 200, 400, and 1000X. The samples were obtained from a 4” diameter tubing, machined according to ASTM A370 standard test method and deformed to 5, 10, 15, and 20 % tensile strain. The results show that the fractal dimension of the grain boundaries changes as deformation is imparted to the material.
These results suggest that fractal dimension may be used to describe microstructural evolution of metals during deformation processes.
Distorted images of the observable self are considered crucial in the development and maintenance of social anxiety. We generated an experimental situation in which participants viewed themselves from an observer's perspective when exposed to scrutiny and evaluation by others.
Twenty patients with social anxiety disorder (SAD) and 20 control subjects were assessed using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) during the public exposure of pre-recorded videos in which they were each shown performing a verbal task. The examiners acted as the audience in the experiment and rated performance. Whole-brain functional maps were computed using Statistical Parametric Mapping.
Robust activation was observed in regions related to self-face recognition, emotional response and general arousal in both study groups. Patients showed significantly greater activation only in the primary visual cortex. By contrast, they showed significant deactivation or smaller activation in dorsal frontoparietal and anterior cingulate cortices relevant to the cognitive control of negative emotion. Task-related anxiety ratings revealed a pattern of negative correlation with activation in this frontoparietal/cingulate network. Importantly, the relationship between social anxiety scores and neural response showed an inverted-U function with positive correlations in the lower score range and negative correlations in the higher range.
Our findings suggest that exposure to scrutiny and evaluation in SAD may be associated with changes in cortical systems mediating the cognitive components of anxiety. Disorder severity seems to be relevant in shaping the neural response pattern, which is distinctively characterized by a reduced cortical response in the most severe cases.
Schizo-affective disorder has not been studied to any significant extent using functional imaging. The aim of this study was to examine patterns of brain activation and deactivation in patients meeting strict diagnostic criteria for the disorder.
Thirty-two patients meeting Research Diagnostic Criteria (RDC) for schizo-affective disorder (16 schizomanic and 16 schizodepressive) and 32 matched healthy controls underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) during performance of the n-back task. Linear models were used to obtain maps of activations and deactivations in the groups.
Controls showed activation in a network of frontal and other areas and also deactivation in the medial frontal cortex, the precuneus and the parietal cortex. Schizo-affective patients activated significantly less in prefrontal, parietal and temporal regions than the controls, and also showed failure of deactivation in the medial frontal cortex. When task performance was controlled for, the reduced activation in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) and the failure of deactivation of the medial frontal cortex remained significant.
Schizo-affective disorder shows a similar pattern of reduced frontal activation to schizophrenia. The disorder is also characterized by failure of deactivation suggestive of default mode network dysfunction.
Alloy 22 is considered as a candidate for engineered barriers of nuclear repositories. Chloride is the only species present in groundwater that is able to promote crevice corrosion, if severe conditions such as high temperatures and a tight crevice are present. Other species present in groundwater have been shown to be inhibitors or non-detrimental species. The objective of this work was to evaluate the efficiency of different species potentially found in groundwaters as possible inhibitors of crevice corrosion of Alloy 22. The crevice corrosion repassivation potential of Alloy 22 was determined in chloride plus inhibitor solutions at 90ºC. The species tested as inhibitors were nitrate, sulfate, carbonate, bicarbonate, chromate, molybdate and tungstate. Nitrate was the most efficient among tested inhibitors. The carbonate was the only species of the carbonate / bicarbonate / carbonic acid equilibrium able to inhibit the chloride-induced crevice corrosion of Alloy 22. Sulfate, chromate and molybdate were moderately good inhibitors.
Deficits in memory and executive performance are well-established features of bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. By contrast, data on cognitive impairment in schizoaffective disorder are scarce and the findings are conflicting.
We used the Wechsler Memory Scale (WMS-III) and the Behavioural Assessment of the Dysexecutive Syndrome (BADS) to test memory and executive function in 45 schizophrenic patients, 26 schizomanic patients and 51 manic bipolar patients in comparison to 65 healthy controls. The patients were tested when acutely ill.
All three patient groups performed significantly more poorly than the controls on global measures of memory and executive functioning, but there were no differences among the patient groups. There were few differences in memory and executive function subtest scores within the patient groups. There were no differences in any test scores between manic patients with and without psychotic symptoms.
Schizophrenic, schizomanic and manic patients show a broadly similar degree of executive and memory deficits in the acute phase of illness. Our results do not support a categorical differentiation across different psychotic categories with regard to neuropsychological deficits.
Lasing action on a third order waveguide mode is demonstrated at room temperature under optical pumping, in a specifically designed quantum well laser structure. The AlGaAs heterostructure involves barriers which ensure that the third order mode has a higher overlap with the single quantum well emitter than the fundamental mode. Third order mode operation of a laser structure opens the way to modal phase matched parametric down conversion inside the semiconductor laser itself. It is a first step towards the realization of semiconductor twin photon laser sources, needed for quantum information experiments.