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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 Asian chestnut gall wasp, Dryocosmus kuriphilus, is an invasive pest causing significant damage to chestnut trees (Castanea spp., Fagaceae). Originating from China, it has recently invaded a wide range of regions in Europe and North America. Understanding the population genetic structure of important invasive pests is very useful for improving the knowledge concerning routes of expansion and colonizing capacity. Despite its economic importance, limited attention has been given to D. kuriphilus origin and spread, or to its genetic structure. In this study, D. kuriphilus populations sampled in eight European countries were screened using both mitochondrial (cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1; COI) and nuclear (internal transcribed spacer 2; ITS2) sequences, and Amplified Fragment Length Polymorphism (AFLP) markers. The molecular markers COI and ITS2 highlighted the presence of a single haplotype in all the studied populations. The recorded mitochondrial haplotype was identical to one of the most widespread haplotypes occurring in the native area (China). AFLP results indicated that D. kuriphilus individuals belong to two genetically distinct clusters without any further geographic clustering. These results suggest that D. kuriphilus populations in Europe could be the result of a single introduction of a Chinese founder population characterized by two genetically distinct lineages that subsequently spread rapidly across Europe. However, the possibility that populations originated from multiple introductions of the same Chinese mitochondrial haplotype cannot be excluded. The reported results provide useful information concerning this invasive species, potentially facilitating integrated pest management.
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.
Studies aimed to assess up to what extent farming and transport previous to slaughtering might affect physiology and meat quality in young goat kids are needed, with the ultimate purpose of promoting practices that minimize stress in these animals. In this regard the effects of on-farm management and transport duration on some physiological responses and meat quality parameters in goat kids were assessed. Two farms representing ‘high’ and ‘low’ welfare-friendly management practices were selected. In total, 32 suckling kids were withdrawn from each farm, transported by road for 2 or 6 h, and then slaughtered. Blood samples were collected both on-farm and in the slaughterhouse, and biochemistry, cell counts and haematocrit were determined. After slaughtering, carcass quality parameters were measured. Longissimus dorsi muscle was dissected and pH, colour parameters, water holding capacity and shear force were measured throughout 8-day ageing period. Results indicate that, regardless its duration, transport caused significant effects on some blood parameters suggesting stress in live animals, like glucose, cortisol or creatine kinase. Despite the marked stress status in animals, this condition was not decisively reflected on L. dorsi quality parameters, but some effects were observed regarding fat cover in carcasses and colour parameters. The results suggest that postmortem changes throughout ageing were more decisive in terms of meat quality than stressful management either on-farm or during transport.
Universal screening for postpartum depression is recommended in many countries. Knowledge of whether the disclosure of depressive symptoms in the postpartum period differs across cultures could improve detection and provide new insights into the pathogenesis. Moreover, it is a necessary step to evaluate the universal use of screening instruments in research and clinical practice. In the current study we sought to assess whether the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS), the most widely used screening tool for postpartum depression, measures the same underlying construct across cultural groups in a large international dataset.
Ordinal regression and measurement invariance were used to explore the association between culture, operationalized as education, ethnicity/race and continent, and endorsement of depressive symptoms using the EPDS on 8209 new mothers from Europe and the USA.
Education, but not ethnicity/race, influenced the reporting of postpartum depression [difference between robust comparative fit indexes (∆*CFI) < 0.01]. The structure of EPDS responses significantly differed between Europe and the USA (∆*CFI > 0.01), but not between European countries (∆*CFI < 0.01).
Investigators and clinicians should be aware of the potential differences in expression of phenotype of postpartum depression that women of different educational backgrounds may manifest. The increasing cultural heterogeneity of societies together with the tendency towards globalization requires a culturally sensitive approach to patients, research and policies, that takes into account, beyond rhetoric, the context of a person's experiences and the context in which the research is conducted.
Control of fire was a hallmark of developing human cognition and an essential technology for the colonisation of cooler latitudes. In Europe, the earliest evidence comes from recent work at the site of Cueva Negra del Estrecho del Río Quípar in south-eastern Spain. Charred and calcined bone and thermally altered chert were recovered from a deep, 0.8-million-year-old sedimentary deposit. A combination of analyses indicated that these had been heated to 400–600°C, compatible with burning. Inspection of the sediment and hydroxyapatite also suggests combustion and degradation of the bone. The results provide new insight into Early Palaeolithic use of fire and its significance for human evolution.
In traditional transit timing variations (TTVs) analysis of multi-planetary systems, the individual TTVs are first derived from transit fitting and later modelled using n-body dynamic simulations to constrain planetary masses. We show that fitting simultaneously the transit light curves with the system dynamics (photo-dynamical model) increases the precision of the TTV measurements and helps constrain the system architecture. We exemplify the advantages of applying this photo-dynamical model to a multi-planetary system found in K2 data very close to 3:2 mean motion resonance, K2-19. In this case the period of the larger TTV variations (libration period) is much longer (>1.5 years) than the duration of the K2 observations (80 days). However, our method allows to detect the short period TTVs produced by the orbital conjunctions between the planets that in turn permits to uniquely characterise the system. Therefore, our method can be used to constrain the masses of near-resonant systems even when the full libration curve is not observed.
The dietary inflammatory index (DII) is a new tool to assess the inflammatory potential of the diet. In the present study, we aimed to determine the association between the DII and BMI, waist circumference and waist:height ratio (WHtR). We conducted a cross-sectional study of 7236 participants recruited into the PREvención con DIeta MEDiterránea trial. Information from a validated 137-item FFQ was used to calculate energy, food and nutrient intakes. A fourteen-item dietary screener was used to assess adherence to the Mediterranean diet (MeDiet). Sex-specific multivariable linear regression models were fitted to estimate differences (and 95 % CI) in BMI, waist circumference and WHtR across the quintiles of the DII. All nutrient intakes, healthy foods and adherence to the MeDiet were higher in the quintile with the lowest DII score (more anti-inflammatory values) except for intakes of animal protein, saturated fat and monounsaturated fat. Although an inverse association between the DII and total energy was apparent, the DII was associated with higher average BMI, waist circumference and WHtR after adjusting for known risk factors. The adjusted difference in the WHtR for women and men between the highest and lowest quintiles of the DII was 1·60 % (95 % CI 0·87, 2·33) and 1·04 % (95 % CI 0·35, 1·74), respectively. Pro-inflammatory scores remained associated with obesity after controlling for the effect that adherence to a MeDiet had on inflammation. In conclusion, the present study shows a direct association between the DII and indices of obesity, and supports the hypothesis that diet may have a role in the development of obesity through inflammatory modulation mechanisms.
Experiments reporting magnetic-field generation by the ablative nonlinear Rayleigh–Taylor (RT) instability are reviewed. The experiments show how large-scale magnetic fields can, under certain circumstances, emerge and persist in strongly driven laboratory and astrophysical flows at drive pressures exceeding one million times atmospheric pressure.
Antarctic and Southern Ocean science is vital to understanding natural variability, the processes that govern global change and the role of humans in the Earth and climate system. The potential for new knowledge to be gained from future Antarctic science is substantial. Therefore, the international Antarctic community came together to ‘scan the horizon’ to identify the highest priority scientific questions that researchers should aspire to answer in the next two decades and beyond. Wide consultation was a fundamental principle for the development of a collective, international view of the most important future directions in Antarctic science. From the many possibilities, the horizon scan identified 80 key scientific questions through structured debate, discussion, revision and voting. Questions were clustered into seven topics: i) Antarctic atmosphere and global connections, ii) Southern Ocean and sea ice in a warming world, iii) ice sheet and sea level, iv) the dynamic Earth, v) life on the precipice, vi) near-Earth space and beyond, and vii) human presence in Antarctica. Answering the questions identified by the horizon scan will require innovative experimental designs, novel applications of technology, invention of next-generation field and laboratory approaches, and expanded observing systems and networks. Unbiased, non-contaminating procedures will be required to retrieve the requisite air, biota, sediment, rock, ice and water samples. Sustained year-round access to Antarctica and the Southern Ocean will be essential to increase winter-time measurements. Improved models are needed that represent Antarctica and the Southern Ocean in the Earth System, and provide predictions at spatial and temporal resolutions useful for decision making. A co-ordinated portfolio of cross-disciplinary science, based on new models of international collaboration, will be essential as no scientist, programme or nation can realize these aspirations alone.