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Antenna-pattern measurements obtained from a double-metal supra-terahertz-frequency (supra-THz) quantum cascade laser (QCL) are presented. The QCL is mounted within a mechanically micro-machined waveguide cavity containing dual diagonal feedhorns. Operating in continuous-wave mode at 3.5 THz, and at an ambient temperature of ~60 K, QCL emission has been directed via the feedhorns to a supra-THz detector mounted on a multi-axis linear scanner. Comparison of simulated and measured far-field antenna patterns shows an excellent degree of correlation between beamwidth (full-width-half-maximum) and sidelobe content and a very substantial improvement when compared with unmounted devices. Additionally, a single output has been used to successfully illuminate and demonstrate an optical breadboard arrangement associated with a future supra-THz Earth observation space-borne payload. Our novel device has therefore provided a valuable demonstration of the effectiveness of supra-THz diagonal feedhorns and QCL devices for future space-borne ultra-high-frequency Earth-observing heterodyne radiometers.
Determining infectious cross-transmission events in healthcare settings involves manual surveillance of case clusters by infection control personnel, followed by strain typing of clinical/environmental isolates suspected in said clusters. Recent advances in genomic sequencing and cloud computing now allow for the rapid molecular typing of infecting isolates.
To facilitate rapid recognition of transmission clusters, we aimed to assess infection control surveillance using whole-genome sequencing (WGS) of microbial pathogens to identify cross-transmission events for epidemiologic review.
Clinical isolates of Staphylococcus aureus, Enterococcus faecium, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Klebsiella pneumoniae were obtained prospectively at an academic medical center, from September 1, 2016, to September 30, 2017. Isolate genomes were sequenced, followed by single-nucleotide variant analysis; a cloud-computing platform was used for whole-genome sequence analysis and cluster identification.
Most strains of the 4 studied pathogens were unrelated, and 34 potential transmission clusters were present. The characteristics of the potential clusters were complex and likely not identifiable by traditional surveillance alone. Notably, only 1 cluster had been suspected by routine manual surveillance.
Our work supports the assertion that integration of genomic and clinical epidemiologic data can augment infection control surveillance for both the identification of cross-transmission events and the inclusion of missed and exclusion of misidentified outbreaks (ie, false alarms). The integration of clinical data is essential to prioritize suspect clusters for investigation, and for existing infections, a timely review of both the clinical and WGS results can hold promise to reduce HAIs. A richer understanding of cross-transmission events within healthcare settings will require the expansion of current surveillance approaches.
Molecular characterization of pediatric low-grade glioma (pLGG) over the last decade has identified recurrent alterations, most commonly involving BRAF, and less frequently other pathways including MYB and MYBL1. Many of these molecular markers have been exploited clinically to aid in diagnosis and treatment decisions. However, their frequency and prognostic significance remain unknown. Further, a significant portion of cases do not have any of these alterations and what underlies these cases remains unknown. To address this we compiled a cohort of 562 patients diagnosed at SickKids from 1990-2017. We identified molecular alterations in 454 cases (81% of the cohort). The most frequent events were those involving BRAF; either as fusions (most commonly with KIAA1549 (30%)) or V600E mutations (17%) and NF-1 (22%). Less frequently, we identified recurrent FGFR1 fusions and mutations (3%), MYB/MYBL alterations (2%), H3F3AK27M (2%) or IDH1R132H (0.5%) mutations, as well as other novel rare events. Survival analysis revealed significantly better progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) of KIAA1549-BRAF fused patients compared to BRAFV600E with 10-year OS 97.7% (95%, CI 95.5-100) and 83.9% (95%, CI 72.5-95.6), respectively. In addition to survival, molecular alterations predicted differences in response to conventional therapeutics; BRAF fused patients showed a 46% response-rate, versus only 14% in V600E patients. pLGGs harboring H3F3AK27M progressed early with median PFS of 11 months. In patients with MYB/MYBL1, FGFR1/FGFR2 alterations, we observed only one death (FGFR1N546K case). The work here represents the largest cohort of pLGGs with molecular profiling and their impact on the clinical behaviour of the disease.
We present the largest homogeneous survey of redshift > 4.4 damped Lyα systems (DLAs) using the spectra of 163 quasars that comprise the Giant Gemini GMOS (GGG) survey. With this survey we make the most precise high-redshift measurement of the cosmological mass density of neutral hydrogen, ΩHI. After correcting for systematic effects using a combination of mock and higher-resolution spectra, we find ΩHI= 0.98+0.20-0.18 × 10−3 at 〈z〉 = 4.9, assuming a 20% contribution from lower column density systems below the DLA threshold. By comparing to literature measurements at lower redshifts, we show that ΩHI can be described by the functional form ΩHI(z) ∝ (1 + z)0.4. This gradual decrease from z = 5 to 0 suggests that in the galaxies which dominate the cosmic star formation rate, Hi is a transitory gas phase fuelling star formation which must be continually replenished by more highly-ionized gas from the intergalactic medium, and from recycled galactic winds.
A segment of earlier Bronze Age arable landscape incorporating isolated
round barrows on the high chalk spur of Hog Cliff Hill became the chosen
location for a later Bronze Age earthwork of considerable dimensions. The
area excavated within the bank and ditch was densely occupied by two major
phases of buildings of timber construction, lasting into the earliest Iron
Age. Sometime during the early Iron Age the oval enclosure was replaced by a
more substantial one which partly followed its line and contained a series
of unusual structures comprising dry-stone flint banks or wall-footings. The
site was subsequently abandoned, the land probably being returned to
agricultural use, until the Roman period when the agger of the Roman road
from Dorchester to Ilchester was constructed across the earthwork.
Labiaplasty is an increasingly popular surgical intervention but little is known about the characteristics and motivation of women who seek the procedure or the psychosexual outcome.
A total of 55 women seeking labiaplasty were compared with 70 women who did not desire labiaplasty. Various general measures of psychopathology as well as specific measures (Genital Appearance Satisfaction; Cosmetic Procedure Screening for labiaplasty) were used. Labia measurements of the women seeking labiaplasty were also obtained.
Women seeking labiaplasty did not differ from controls on measures of depression or anxiety. They did, however, express increased dissatisfaction towards the appearance of their genitalia, with lower overall sexual satisfaction and a poorer quality of life in terms of body image. Women seeking labiaplasty reported a significantly greater frequency of avoidance behaviours on all the domains assessed, and greater frequency of safety-seeking behaviours for most of the domains. Key motivations reported for labiaplasty were categorized as cosmetic, functional or sexual. Of the 55 women seeking labiaplasty, 10 met diagnostic criteria for body dysmorphic disorder.
This is the first controlled study to describe some of the characteristics and motivations of women seeking labiaplasty. We identified a wide range of avoidance and safety-seeking behaviours, which occurred more frequently in the labiaplasty group than the control group. These could be used clinically as part of a psychological intervention for women seeking labiaplasty.
Two alkali-tin-silicate (ATS) glasses have been prepared at Argonne National
Laboratory (ANL) as part of our ongoing research in radioactive waste glass
development. These glasses dissolved 5% and approximately 7% Pu. Early
corrosion test results indicate that Pu-bearing ATS glass is extremely
durable. The initial goal in this project concerned equally both the
solubility of Pu and the durability of the ATS glasses; however, our primary
emphasis has changed recently to maximizing the loading of Pu in the glass.
ATS-based glasses, using Th(VI) and Ce(III) as surrogates for Pu(IV), are
now being investigated to increase the solubility of Pu without
substantially sacrificing the durability of the current ATS formulations.
The solution data from various corrosion tests on the original Pu-containing
ATS glasses are also presented.
Faecal moisture content can determine whether faeces appear soft or firm, and faecal character can influence whether owners are satisfied with a dog food. In a previous study, dogs appeared to produce softer faeces after noon. The purpose of the present study was to determine whether time of defecation affected canine faecal water content. A total of eight hound dogs were fed one of four canned diets as a single meal each morning for 1 week per diet in a Latin square design. All four diets contained approximately 77 % moisture and, on a DM basis, 24 MJ/kg gross energy, 23 % crude protein, 32 % crude fat, 31 % N-free extract and 1 % crude fibre. The proportion of dietary protein from soya-derived texturised vegetable protein (TVP):beef was 0:100, 14:86, 29:71 and 57:43, respectively. Soya carbohydrate partially replaced maize starch as TVP increased. Faeces were collected by direct catch during the sixth morning and afternoon of each diet period. Mean faecal moisture content was greater in the afternoon than in the morning (79 v. 71 %; P = 0·01) and increased with dietary TVP (P ≤ 0·0001), and there was an interaction between time of day and percentage TVP (P = 0·003). Faecal moisture content differed from morning to afternoon only with TVP in the diet. Faecal wet weight was similar from morning to afternoon. This suggests that time of day and presence of TVP from soya should be taken into account when evaluating the effect of a diet on faecal form and moisture content in dogs fed once daily.
When amphetamines are administered to humans every few hours for several days, either during the ‘speed runs’ of addicts or in controlled laboratory settings, the psychosis which reliably results is similar to paranoid schizophrenia in a number of important aspects. This unique regimen of drug intake, which involves the continuous presence of stimulants over a prolonged period of time, can be simulated in animals using subcutaneously implanted slow-release silicone pellets containing d-amphetamine base. Monkeys and rats implanted with these pellets develop stages of behavioural alterations which are somewhat similar in sequence to those observed in humans who have received frequent doses of amphetamine. An initial period of hyperactivity and exploratory behaviour is followed by the gradual development of motor stereotypies which become virtually incessant. A period of relative inactivity then appears which is followed, at 4–5 days after pellet implantation, by a late stage. This final stage is characterized by ‘wet-dog’ shakes, parasitotic-like grooming episodes, and a variety of other forms of hallucinatory-like behaviour. At about the same time there are distinctive and partially irreversible alterations in dopaminergic innervations of the caudate nucleus, but not in mesolimbic dopamine innervation of the nucleus accumbens or in several other neurotransmitter systems. Continuous amphetamine administration may reproduce some aspects of the prolonged excitation which accompanies an acute psychotic episode and may be a fruitful model for the clarification of the dopamine theory of schizophrenia.
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