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We consider maximal almost disjoint families of block subspaces of countable vector spaces, focusing on questions of their size and definability. We prove that the minimum infinite cardinality of such a family cannot be decided in ZFC and that the “spectrum” of cardinalities of mad families of subspaces can be made arbitrarily large, in analogy to results for mad families on ω. We apply the author’s local Ramsey theory for vector spaces  to give partial results concerning their definability.
This chapter explores whether and how genomic resources can be protected by the communities from, or countries in which they are accessed. Specifically, it asks whether the Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit-Sharing can be an effective mechanism to reassure communities about the sharing of gene sequencing data. These questions are of particular importance to Indigenous peoples and local communities, as many have troubling historical experiences with colonization and associated natural resource exploitation. Many Indigenous and local communities (ILCs) live in developing countries, which are particularly sensitive to access and benefit-sharing (ABS) issues. Different but equally serious challenges exist for Indigenous peoples in developed countries like Canada, Australia, New Zealand and elsewhere. Until outcomes of implementation of the Nagoya Protocol are captured, Indigenous peoples and Local Communities (IPLCs) remain in a quandary as to how to protect digitized genetic resources within their territories or under their jurisdiction. To advance our understanding of legal and regulatory options, this chapter integrates normative and positive perspectives on the mechanisms for access and benefit-sharing in the age of digital biology.
Thalénite-(Y), ideally Y3Si3O10F, is a heavy-rare-earth-rich silicate phase occurring in granite pegmatites that may help to illustrate rare-earth element (REE) chemistry and behaviour in natural systems. The crystal structure and mineral chemistry of thalénite-(Y) were analysed by electron microprobe analysis, X-ray diffraction and micro-Raman spectroscopy from a new locality in the peralkaline granite of the Golden Horn batholith, Okanogan County, Washington State, USA, in comparison with new analyses from the White Cloud pegmatite in the Pikes Peak batholith, Colorado, USA. The Golden Horn thalénite-(Y) occurs as late-stage sub-millimetre euhedral bladed transparent crystals in small miarolitic cavities in an arfvedsonite-bearing biotite granite. It exhibits growth zoning with distinct heavy-rare-earth element (HREE) vs. light-rare-earth element (LREE) enriched zones. The White Cloud thalénite-(Y) occurs in two distinct anhedral and botryoidal crystal habits of mostly homogenous composition. In addition, minor secondary thalénite-(Y) is recognized by its distinct Yb-rich composition (up to 0.8 atoms per formula unit (apfu) Yb). Single-crystal X-ray diffraction analysis and structure refinement reveals Y-site ordering with preferential HREE occupation of Y2 vs. Y1 and Y3 REE sites. Chondrite normalization shows continuous enrichment of HREE in White Cloud thalénite-(Y), in contrast to Golden Horn thalénite-(Y) with a slight depletion of the heaviest REE (Tm, Yb and Lu). The results suggest a hydrothermal origin of the Golden Horn miarolitic thalénite-(Y), compared to a combination of both primary magmatic followed by hydrothermal processes responsible for the multiple generations over a range of spatial scales in White Cloud thalénite-(Y).
Social context has a major influence on the detection and treatment of youth mental and substance use disorders in socioeconomically disadvantaged urban areas, particularly where gang culture, community violence, normalisation of drug use and repetitive maladaptive family structures prevail. This paper aims to examine how social context influences the development, identification and treatment of youth mental and substance use disorders in socioeconomically disadvantaged urban areas from the perspectives of health care workers.
Semi-structured interviews were conducted with health care workers (n=37) from clinical settings including: primary care, secondary care and community agencies and analysed thematically using Bronfenbrenner’s Ecological Theory to guide analysis.
Health care workers’ engagement with young people was influenced by the multilevel ecological systems within the individual’s social context which included: the young person’s immediate environment/‘microsystem’ (e.g., family relationships), personal relationships in the ‘mesosystem’ (e.g., peer and school relationships), external factors in the young person’s local area context/‘exosystem’ (e.g., drug culture and criminality) and wider societal aspects in the ‘macrosystem’ (e.g., mental health policy, health care inequalities and stigma).
In socioeconomically disadvantaged urban areas, social context, specifically the micro-, meso-, exo-, and macro-system impact both on the young person’s experience of mental health or substance use problems and services, which endeavour to address these problems. Interventions that effectively identify and treat these problems should reflect the additional challenges posed by such settings.
The aim of the current study was to gain insight into the process of initiation and progression to problematic use among young people who reach clinically significant levels of substance use requiring treatment.
Twenty young people, aged between 15 and 19 years from two different drug treatment centres in Ireland were interviewed regarding their views on their pathway into substance use, their progress to more problematic use, their perception of their parents’ role, if any, in their trajectory and their typical coping style before treatment. Content analysis was conducted on the resulting narratives.
The use of substances to cope with life stressors emerged as a prominent theme at initial and problematic stages of use. Multiple maladaptive coping approaches were reported. Both direct and indirect influences from parents in their substance use problem were cited. However, some participants reported that parents had no causal role in their substance use trajectory, in particular regarding mothers.
The current findings suggest that substance misuse is a multi-determined problem and a number of intervention strategies are suggested to delay onset and related harms associated with adolescent substance use.
General Practitioner consultation rates for influenza-like illness (ILI) are monitored through several geographically distinct schemes in the UK, providing early warning to government and health services of community circulation and intensity of activity each winter. Following on from the 2009 pandemic, there has been a harmonization initiative to allow comparison across the distinct existing surveillance schemes each season. The moving epidemic method (MEM), proposed by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control for standardizing reporting of ILI rates, was piloted in 2011/12 and 2012/13 along with the previously proposed UK method of empirical percentiles. The MEM resulted in thresholds that were lower than traditional thresholds but more appropriate as indicators of the start of influenza virus circulation. The intensity of the influenza season assessed with the MEM was similar to that reported through the percentile approach. The MEM pre-epidemic threshold has now been adopted for reporting by each country of the UK. Further work will continue to assess intensity of activity and apply standardized methods to other influenza-related data sources.
Syndromic surveillance is vital for monitoring public health during mass gatherings. The London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games represents a major challenge to health protection services and community surveillance. In response to this challenge the Health Protection Agency has developed a new syndromic surveillance system that monitors daily general practitioner out-of-hours and unscheduled care attendances. This new national system will fill a gap identified in the existing general practice-based syndromic surveillance systems by providing surveillance capability of general practice activity during evenings/nights, over weekends and public holidays. The system will complement and supplement the existing tele-health phone line, general practitioner and emergency department syndromic surveillance systems. This new national system will contribute to improving public health reassurance, especially to meet the challenges of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
An analysis was undertaken to measure age-specific vaccine effectiveness (VE) of 2010/11 trivalent seasonal influenza vaccine (TIV) and monovalent 2009 pandemic influenza vaccine (PIV) administered in 2009/2010. The test-negative case-control study design was employed based on patients consulting primary care. Overall TIV effectiveness, adjusted for age and month, against confirmed influenza A(H1N1)pdm 2009 infection was 56% (95% CI 42–66); age-specific adjusted VE was 87% (95% CI 45–97) in <5-year-olds and 84% (95% CI 27–97) in 5- to 14-year-olds. Adjusted VE for PIV was only 28% (95% CI −6 to 51) overall and 72% (95% CI 15–91) in <5-year-olds. For confirmed influenza B infection, TIV effectiveness was 57% (95% CI 42–68) and in 5- to 14-year-olds 75% (95% CI 32–91). TIV provided moderate protection against the main circulating strains in 2010/2011, with higher protection in children. PIV administered during the previous season provided residual protection after 1 year, particularly in the <5 years age group.
This article examines the changes in herbicide use in relation to canola production in Western Canada, comparing 1995 and 2006. The commercialization and widespread adoption of herbicide-resistant (HR) canola has changed weed management practices in Western Canada. Before the introduction of HR canola, weeds were controlled by herbicides and tillage as the leading herbicides at that time required tillage to allow for soil incorporation of the herbicide. Much of the tillage associated with HR canola production has been eliminated as 64% of producers are now using zero or minimum tillage as their preferred form of crop and soil management. Additionally, there have been significant changes regarding the use and application of herbicides for weed control in canola. This research shows that when comparing canola production in 1995 and 2006, the environmental impact of herbicides applied to canola decreased 53%, producer exposure to chemicals decreased 56%, and quantity of active ingredient applied decreased 1.3 million kg. The cumulative environmental impact was reduced almost 50% with the use of HR herbicides. If HR canola had not been developed and Canadian canola farmers continued to use previous production technologies, the amount of active ingredient applied to control weeds in 2007 would have been 60% above what was actually applied.
The UK was one of few European countries to document a substantial wave of pandemic (H1N1) 2009 influenza in summer 2009. The First Few Hundred (FF100) project ran from April–June 2009 gathering information on early laboratory-confirmed cases across the UK. In total, 392 confirmed cases were followed up. Children were predominantly affected (median age 15 years, IQR 10–27). Symptoms were mild and similar to seasonal influenza, with the exception of diarrhoea, which was reported by 27%. Eleven per cent of all cases had an underlying medical condition, similar to the general population. The majority (92%) were treated with antiviral drugs with 12% reporting adverse effects, mainly nausea and other gastrointestinal complaints. Duration of illness was significantly shorter when antivirals were given within 48 h of onset (median 5 vs. 9 days, P=0·01). No patients died, although 14 were hospitalized, of whom three required mechanical ventilation. The FF100 identified key clinical and epidemiological characteristics of infection with this novel virus in near real-time.
In March 1988, there was an outbreak of infection by a strain of Salmonella saint-paul with a distinctive antigenic marker. A total of 143 reports were received between 1 March and 7 June. Preliminary investigations suggested that raw beansprouts were a possible source of infection and a case-control study confirmed the association. S. saint-paul of the epidemic type was isolated from samples of beansprouts on retail sale in different cities in the United Kingdom and from mung bean seeds on the premises of the producer who was most strongly associated with cases. In addition, Salmonella virchow PT34 was isolated from samples of raw beansprouts and was subsequently associated with seven cases of infection. Four other serotypes of salmonella were also isolated from beansprouts. On 8 April the public were advised to boil beansprouts for 15 seconds before consumption, and the premises of the one producer associated with many cases were closed. As a result of these actions there was a significant decrease in the number of infections with S. saint-paul.
An outbreak of Salmonella typhimurium DT 124 infection which affected 101 people in England in December 1987 and January 1988 was detected through surveillance of laboratory reports from medical microbiology laboratories of the NHS and PHLS. Within 1 week of noting the increase in reports, epidemiological and microbiological investigations identified a small German salami stick as the vehicle of infection and the product was withdrawn from sale. The epidemiological investigation highlighted the occurrence of a long incubation period, bloody diarrhoea. Prompt recognition and investigation of the outbreak prevented further cases of severe infection.
A large outbreak of Salmonella enterica serotype Newport infection occurred in Northern Ireland during September and October 2004. Typing of isolates from patients confirmed that this strain was indistinguishable from that in concurrent outbreaks in regions of England, in Scotland and in the Isle of Man. A total of 130 cases were distributed unequally across local government district areas in Northern Ireland. The epidemic curve suggested a continued exposure over about 4 weeks. A matched case-control study of 23 cases and 39 controls found a statistically significant association with a history of having eaten lettuce in a meal outside the home and being a case (odds ratio 23·7, 95% confidence interval 1·4–404·3). This exposure was reported by 57% of cases. Although over 300 food samples were tested, none yielded any Salmonella spp. Complexity and limited traceability in salad vegetable distribution hindered further investigation of the ultimate source of the outbreak.
Following a suggestion by ward patients that Rapid Rhino™ nasal packs may deflate over time, allowing recurrence of epistaxis, we aimed to demonstrate deflation of 7.5 cm Rapid Rhino packs when used in vivo for post-operative nasal packing.
Materials and methods:
The volume of air insufflated and retrieved from Rapid Rhino nasal packs used for post-operative nasal packing was recorded, as was the pressure following inflation and prior to removal. The time taken for the initial inflation pressure to stabilise was monitored in a number of packs. Similar pressure and volume measurements were repeated in a series of in vitro packs for comparison.
Fourteen consecutive patients undergoing septoplasty were recruited. High but unsteady pressure values were obtained in the first patient's packs. In the subsequent five patients, continuous pressure monitoring demonstrated that gradual depressurisation occurred over the first 16 to 22 minutes following inflation. A typical pressure was 35 cmH2O after inflating with 8 ml of air. Only one Rapid Rhino pack was demonstrated to leak air in vivo.
When used in vivo, Rapid Rhino nasal packs initially depressurise over a period of about 20 minutes. Actual leakage (deflation) was not demonstrated to be an expected feature of Rapid Rhino packs in this study.
A prospective study of norovirus outbreaks in Ireland was carried out over a 1-year period from 1 October 2004 to 30 September 2005. Epidemiological and molecular data on norovirus outbreaks in the Republic of Ireland (ROI) and Northern Ireland (NI) were collected and combined in real time in a common database. Most reported outbreaks occurred in hospitals and residential institutions and person-to-person spread was the predominant mode of transmission. The predominant circulating norovirus strain was the GII.4-2004 strain with a small number of outbreaks due to GII.2. This study represents the first time that enhanced epidemiological and virological data on norovirus outbreaks in Ireland have been described. The link established between the epidemiological and virological institutions during the course of this study has been continued and the data is being used as a source of data for the Foodborne Viruses in Europe Network (DIVINE-NET).
This study investigated the identification and antimicrobial susceptibility testing of Salmonella isolates in Northern Ireland during 2001–2003. All six participating hospital laboratories used similar methods. Identification and antimicrobial resistance of human enteric (n=897) Salmonella isolates were analysed by retrospective collation of laboratory records. Resistance of human Salmonella isolates to nalidixic acid was 16% but resistance to ciprofloxacin or cefotaxime was rare (<1%). Minor inter-laboratory variations in sensitivity testing practices make it difficult to compare antimicrobial sensitivity results reliably and also to monitor for epidemic clones such as S. Typhimurium DT104 with the ACSSuT resistance pattern. The outcome of this study was the adoption of a standardized regional approach to the isolation of salmonella antimicrobial resistance. This should improve epidemiological monitoring of epidemic clones and assure optimum treatment options are available. In cases of treatment failure, MICs to third-generation cephalosporins and ciprofloxacin should be determined.
Objective: To compare the potential risk of blood contamination of the surgeon's conjunctiva during tonsillectomy using disposable bipolar diathermy and reusable monopolar diathermy.
Design: A prospective, single-blind, randomized, controlled trial.
Methods: Elective tonsillectomy was performed using either disposable bipolar diathermy or reusable monopolar diathermy. The operating surgeon wore a ViewsafeTM protective eyeshield which was later examined under an operating microscope by a blinded observer and the number of blood spots counted.
Results: One hundred and sixty-eight patients were enrolled. The relative risk of conjunctival contamination of the surgeon using disposable bipolar diathermy was 2.8 times that with reusable monopolar diathermy (chi-squared test, p < 0.0005). A previous history of peritonsillar abscess and additional adenoidectomy were associated with increased blood splatter.
Conclusion: The use of disposable bipolar diathermy for haemostasis during tonsillectomy poses a greater risk of conjunctival contamination for the surgeon than using reusable monopolar diathermy.