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Quality of in vitro-produced embryos is influenced by changes in gene expression in response to adverse conditions. Gene markers for predicting ‘good embryos’ do not exist at present. We propose that the expression of pluripotency markers OCT4–SOX2–NANOG in D9 (day 9) bovine demi-embryos correlated with development at D13 (day 13). Day 8 in vitro-produced blastocysts were split in two cloned halves, one half (D9) was subjected to analysis of pluripotency markers and the other was kept in culture until D13 of development. Embryo development was scored and correlated with its own status at D9 and assigned to one of two categories: G1, arrested/dead; or G2, development up to D13. SOX2 and NANOG expression levels were significantly higher in embryos from G1 and there was also negative correlation between SOX2 and embryo survival to D13 (G3; r = −0.37; P = 0.03). We observed a significant reduction in the expression of the three studied genes from D9 to D13. Furthermore, there was a correlation between the expression of pluripotency markers at D9 and embryo diameter and the expression of trophoblastic markers at D13 (TP1–EOMES–FGF4–CDX2–TKDP1). Finally, the quotient between the relative expression of SOX2 and OCT4 in the D9 blastocysts from G1 and G2 showed that embryos that were considered as competent (G2) had a quotient close to one, while the other group had a quotient of 2.3 due to a higher expression of SOX2. These results might indicate that overexpression of SOX2 at the blastocyst stage had a negative effect on the control of embryonic developmental potential.
Culturally linked family influences during adolescence are important predictors of health and well-being for Latino youth, yet few studies have examined whether these familial influences are associated with indicators of typical physiological stress processes. Following a cultural neurobiology framework, we examined the role of family in the everyday lives of Latino adolescents (N = 209; Mage = 18.10; 85.1% Mexican descent; 64.4% female) by investigating familism values and perceptions of parent support as well as daily family assistance behaviors in relation to hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal axis diurnal patterns, indexed by salivary cortisol five times a day for 3 weekdays. Three-level growth curve analyses revealed that perceptions of parental support were associated with greater cortisol awakening responses, whereas familism values were not associated with diurnal cortisol patterns. In day-to-day analyses, assisting family during the day (compared to not assisting family) was associated with lower waking cortisol levels and flatter diurnal slopes the next day. Our findings highlight the dynamic associations and multiple time courses between cultural values and behaviors, daily experiences, and physiological stress processes for Latino adolescents. Further, we identified important cultural risk and promotive factors associated with physiological regulation in daily life and potential pathways toward health outcomes in adulthood.
Studies in the use of the purine derivatives technique in ruminants have been stimulated by the possible use of this technique as an estimator of the rumen microbial-N supplied to the host animal. The recovery factor influences the estimation of the total purines absorbed and therefore the microbial-N supply. The relationship between exogenous purine input and urinary excretion and recovery has been studied using cattle maintained with the intragastric infusion technique (Orskov et al., 1979). The urinary recovery of exogenous purines has been estimated to be 0.77-0.85 (Chen et al., 1990a, Verbic et al., 1990), and this relationship has been assumed to be applicable to normal feeding situations. To our knowledge there is no data to support or reject this approach. This study examined the urinary recovery of exogenous allantoin input in steers under normal feeding conditions.
Several Apriori algorithm implementations for mining association rules have been proposed in the literature using the Hadoop-MapReduce framework and, more recently, Spark. However, none of the works have made a detailed assessment of its performance, for example, comparing it with other implementations in various characteristics of data sets. In this work, we present a review of the main algorithms proposed for Hadoop-MapReduce and compared their implementations in a single environment under several different situations. Moreover, these algorithms had their implementations adapted to Spark, and also compared under the same circumstances. Based on the results of the experiments, we present a framework for recommending the Apriori implementation most appropriate for solving a given problem, according to the data set characteristics and minimum required support. The results show that Spark implementations overcome Hadoop-MapReduce implementations at runtime in most experiments. However, there is no single implementation that is the best in all the evaluated situations.
Background: EMBRACE (NCT02462759) Part 1 is a randomized, double-blind, sham-procedure controlled study assessing safety/tolerability of intrathecal nusinersen (12-mg equivalent dose) in symptomatic infants/children with SMA who were not eligible to participate in ENDEAR or CHERISH. Methods: Eligible participants had onset of SMA symptoms at ≤6 months with 3 SMN2 copies; onset at ≤6 months, age >7 months and 2 copies; or onset at >6 months, age ≤18 months, and 2/3 copies. Safety/tolerability was the primary endpoint. Exploratory endpoints included Hammersmith Infant Neurological Examination Section 2 (HINE-2) motor milestone attainment, change in ventilator use, and growth. Results: EMBRACE Part 1 was terminated early based on positive results from ENDEAR. Safety/tolerability was similar to previous trials. More nusinersen-treated (11/14;79%) vs. sham–treated individuals (2/7;29%) were HINE-2 motor milestone responders. Between Day 183 and 302, mean (SD) hours of ventilator use changed by +1.236 (3.712) hours in nusinersen-treated (n=12) and +2.123 (3.023) hours in sham–treated individuals (n=7). Similar increases in weight and body length were observed in nusinersen-treated and sham–treated individuals by Day 183. Conclusions: In EMBRACE Part 1, nusinersen demonstrated a favorable benefit-risk profile. These results add to the aggregated efficacy, safety/tolerability data of nusinersen in SMA.
Previous reviews suggest there is minimal evidence for an association between duration of untreated psychosis (DUP) and neurocognition. This is based on tallied findings of studies with small samples and neurocognition viewed as a single construct. We aimed to conduct a systematic review and meta-analysis examining the association between DUP and individual neurocognitive domains and tests in first-episode psychosis (FEP).
MOOSE and PRISMA guidelines were followed. Forty-three studies involving 4647 FEP patients were included. For studies providing correlations between DUP and neurocognition, 12 separate meta-analyses were performed based on neurocognitive domains/indices. The influence of demographic/clinical variables was tested using weighted linear meta-regression analyses.
The relationship between DUP and most neurocognitive domains/indices was not significant. Longer DUP was associated with a larger cognitive deterioration index, i.e. current minus premorbid intellectual functioning (N = 4; mean ES −0.213, 95% confidence interval (CI) (−0.344 to −0.074), p = 0.003). Findings were homogeneous, with no evidence of publication bias or significant influence from moderators. For studies providing mean and standard deviations for neurocognitive measures and DUP, 20 meta-regressions were performed on individual neurocognitive tests. One significant finding emerged showing that longer DUP was associated with fewer Wisconsin Card Sorting Test-perseverative errors (mean ES −0.031, 95% CI (−0.048 to −0.013), p < 0.001). Exploratory meta-regressions in studies with mean DUP <360 days showed longer DUP was significantly associated with poorer performance on Trail Making Test A and B and higher Full-Scale IQ.
There may not be a generalised association between DUP and neurocognition, however, specific cognitive functions may be associated with longer DUP or delayed help-seeking.
The occurrence of tannins in plant leaves has a widely known ecological significance in terms of both nutritional constraint for animals and litter decay in the soil. However, there is no single protocol for extracting tannins for their subsequent quantification. The use of acetone has the advantage of inhibiting the polyphenol-protein interaction (Hagerman and Robbins, 1987), but becomes an disadvantage when assaying the protein precipitation capacity of the extract in biological assays (Hagerman and Butler, 1991). The objective of the present work was to compare tannin extracting agents and to assess the relationship arising between different solvents.
The occurrence of polyphenolics compounds in forage is of nutritional significance due to its protein binding capacity which can affect protein digestion (Woodward and Reed, 1989). They also have a role in controlling rates of decomposition and N mineralization of plant residues (Swift et al., 1979). The Prussian-blue assay (Price and Butler, 1977) is widely use for quantitative measurement of polyphenol content of plant materials due to the easiness it can be performed. Polyphenols are polar compound and literature report extractions with, methanol, ethanol or acetone as usual solvents. Although it is known that no single protocol is optimum for all samples. No comparison was found between solvents on a wide range of material to assess if results might be correlated. The objective of the present work was to compare the efficiency of four solvents for polyphenol extraction.
The house mouse (Mus musculus) and the black rat (Rattus rattus) are reservoir hosts for zoonotic pathogens, several of which cause neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). Studies of the prevalence of these NTD-causing zoonotic pathogens, in house mice and black rats from tropical residential areas are scarce. Three hundred and two house mice and 161 black rats were trapped in 2013 from two urban neighbourhoods and a rural village in Yucatan, Mexico, and subsequently tested for Trypanosoma cruzi, Hymenolepis diminuta and Leptospira interrogans. Using the polymerase chain reaction we detected T. cruzi DNA in the hearts of 4·9% (8/165) and 6·2% (7/113) of house mice and black rats, respectively. We applied the sedimentation technique to detect eggs of H. diminuta in 0·5% (1/182) and 14·2% (15/106) of house mice and black rats, respectively. Through the immunofluorescent imprint method, L. interrogans was identified in 0·9% (1/106) of rat kidney impressions. Our results suggest that the black rat could be an important reservoir for T. cruzi and H. diminuta in the studied sites. Further studies examining seasonal and geographical patterns could increase our knowledge on the epidemiology of these pathogens in Mexico and the risk to public health posed by rodents.
Strongyloides venezuelensis is a parasitic nematode of rodents that is frequently used to obtain heterologous antigens for immunological diagnosis of human strongyloidiasis. The aim of this study was to identify antigens from filariform larvae of S. venezuelensis for immunodiagnosis of human strongyloidiasis. Soluble and membrane fractions from filariform larvae of S. venezuelensis were obtained in phosphate saline (SS and SM) and in Tris–HCl buffer (TS and TM), and were analysed by Western blotting. Different antigenic components were recognized by IgG antibodies from the sera of strongyloidiasis patients. Highest recognition was observed for a 30–40 kDa mass range present in all antigenic fractions. The band encompassing this mass range was then excised and subjected to mass spectrometry for protein identification. Immunoreactive proteins identified in the soluble fractions corresponded to metabolic enzymes, whereas cytoskeletal proteins and galectins were more abundant in the membrane fractions. These results represent the first approach towards identification of S. venezuelensis antigens for use in immunodiagnostic assays for human strongyloidiasis.
Cognitive deficits are predictors of functional outcome in patients with psychosis. While conventional antipsychotics are relatively effective on positive symptoms, their impact on negative and cognitive symptoms is limited. Recent studies have established a link between oxidative stress and neurocognitive deficits in psychosis. N-acetylcysteine (NAC), a glutathione precursor with glutamatergic properties, has shown efficacy on negative symptoms and functioning in patients with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, respectively. However, there are few evidence-based approaches for managing cognitive impairment in psychosis. The present study aims to examine the cognitive effects of adjunctive NAC treatment in a pooled subgroup of participants with psychosis who completed neuropsychological assessment in two trials of both schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.
A sample of 58 participants were randomized in a double fashion to receive 2 g/day of NAC (n = 27) or placebo (n = 31) for 24 weeks. Attention, working memory and executive function domains were assessed. Differences between cognitive performance at baseline and end point were examined using Wilcoxon's test. The Mann–Whitney test was used to examine the differences between the NAC and placebo groups at the end point.
Participants treated with NAC had significantly higher working memory performance at week 24 compared with placebo (U = 98.5, p = 0.027).
NAC may have an impact on cognitive performance in psychosis, as a significant improvement in working memory was observed in the NAC-treated group compared with placebo; however, these preliminary data require replication. Glutamatergic compounds such as NAC may constitute a step towards the development of useful therapies for cognitive impairment in psychosis.
Recent observations of solar flares at high frequencies have provided evidence of a new spectral component with flux increasing with frequency in the THz range. Its origin remains unclear. Here, we present preliminary results of simulations of synchrotron emission due to secondary positrons and electrons produced in nuclear reactions during a solar flare. We use the general purpose Monte-Carlo code FLUKA to obtain distributions of secondary particles resulting from accelerated protons interacting in the solar atmosphere. We calculate the synchrotron radiation spectrum and compare our results to observations of the November 4th, 2003 burst event.
Among the solar proxies, κ1 Cet, stands out as potentially having a mass very close to solar and a young age. We report magnetic field measurements and planetary habitability consequences around this star, a proxy of the young Sun when life arose on Earth. Magnetic strength was determined from spectropolarimetric observations and we reconstruct the large-scale surface magnetic field to derive the magnetic environment, stellar winds, and particle flux permeating the interplanetary medium around κ1 Cet. Our results show a closer magnetosphere and mass-loss rate 50 times larger than the current solar wind mass-loss rate when Life arose on Earth, resulting in a larger interaction via space weather disturbances between the stellar wind and a hypothetical young-Earth analogue, potentially affecting the habitability. Interaction of the wind from the young Sun with the planetary ancient magnetic field may have affected the young Earth and its life conditions.
In consequence of the decision made by the Fifth General Assembly of the I.A.U. I have been entrusted, from January 1936, with the direction of the Central Bureau for the International Service of Latitudes.
I am much indebted to Prof. Kimura, who preceded me as Director and to Prof. Kohlschütter, Director of the Geodetic Institute of Potsdam, for information and advice, which has been of great assistance to me; therefore I desire to acknowledge to them my deep gratitude.
The Granat observatory was launched into a high apogee orbit on 1989 December 1 by a PROTON launcher. The initial Granat orbit had an apogee close to 200000 km and a perigee of 2000 km with an orbital period of 4 days. The satellite is entering the radiation belts for a few hours every orbit. Due to orbital evolution the perigee increased and the apogee decreased with time. After about 1.5 years of operation the perigee increased up to 20000 km. This has put the satellite completely outside of the proton radiation belts which makes the detector activation during the perigee passage negligible. Moreover, the satellite orbit is outside of the magnetosphere during the most parts of the mission. This makes such an orbit very attractive for high energy astrophysics missions which require low background level in order to achieve high sensitivity, and makes it essential for the investigation of the high energy transient phenomena such as cosmic γ-ray bursts and solar flares.
After 22 yr of the low-level liquid scintillation counting 14C laboratory at the Center for Nuclear Energy in Agriculture (CENA) at São Paulo University (USP), Piracicaba, Brazil, and several collaborative projects with Brazilian and international researchers from distinct scientific areas, the first 14C accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) laboratory in Latin America was installed at the Physics Institute of the Universidade Federal Fluminense (UFF), Niterói, Brazil. A 250kV single stage accelerator produced by National Electrostatics Corporation began its operation in 2012. In this work, we compare measurements performed at the AMS Radiocarbon Laboratory at UFF (LAC-UFF) with those performed at CENA and the University of Georgia (UGAMS), Georgia, USA. All the results obtained from distinct inorganic and organic samples were in very good agreement.
Thoracic endovascular aneurysm repair has been employed to treat late complications after aortic coarctation correction. However, its use in children has seldomly been reported.
We present the case of a 15-year-old child who presented with a ruptured aneurysm of the descending aorta complicated later by an aortic-oesophageal fistula following aortic coarctation stenting that was managed with multiple bridging endovascular interventions until a definitive repair was performed.
Thoracic endovascular aneurysm repair may be used successfully as a bridging intervention to a definitive repair in children with life-threatening aortic complications following aortic coarctation repair.
Gamma-ray burst host galaxies are deficient in molecular gas, and show anomalous metal-poor regions close to GRB positions. Using recent Australia Telescope Compact Array (ATCA) Hi observations we show that they have substantial atomic gas reservoirs. This suggests that star formation in these galaxies may be fuelled by recent inflow of metal-poor atomic gas. While this process is debated, it can happen in low-metallicity gas near the onset of star formation because gas cooling (necessary for star formation) is faster than the Hi-to-H2 conversion.