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Associations between different forms of malnutrition and environmental conditions, including water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), may contribute towards persistently poor child health, growth and cognitive development. Experiencing poor nutrition in utero or during early childhood is furthermore associated with chronic diseases later in life. The primary responsibility for provision of water and sanitation, as a basic service and human right, lies with the State; however, a number of stakeholders are involved. The situation is most critical in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), where, in 2015, 311 million people lacked a safe water source, and >70% of SSA populations were living without adequate sanitation. The aim of this paper was to conduct a systematic review to investigate the state of literature concerned with WASH and its association with nutritional status, and governance in children from birth to 5 years of age in SSA. Articles were sourced from PubMed Central, Science Direct and ProQuest Social Science databases published between 1990 and 2017. The PRISMA Statement was utilised and this systematic review is registered with PROSPERO (CRD42017071700). The search terms returned 15,351 articles for screening, with 46 articles included. This is indicative of a limited body of knowledge; however, the number of publications on this topic has been increasing, suggesting burgeoning field of interest. Targeted research on the governance of WASH through the identification of the various role players and stakeholders at various levels, while understanding the policy environment in relation to particular health-related outcomes is imperative to address the burden of child undernutrition.
Population growth and rising incomes have led to increasing global demand for meat products. Meeting this demand without converting remaining natural ecosystems or further degrading ecosystems is one of the largest global sustainability challenges. A critical step to overcoming this challenge is to increase the productivity of livestock grazing systems, which occupy the largest land area of any type of agriculture globally. Integrated crop−livestock systems (iCL), which re-couple crop and livestock production at the farm scale, have been considered a promising strategy to tackle this challenge by restoring degraded pasturelands and providing supplemental nutrition to livestock. However, few studies have analyzed the economic viability of such systems, especially in Brazil, an important player in global food systems. This paper presents an economic analysis of iCL in Mato Grosso, Brazil, the largest grain and beef producer in the country, which spans the ecologically diverse Amazon, Cerrado and Pantanal biomes. We compare the economic performance of an integrated soybean/corn and beef cattle system to a continuous crop (soybean/corn) system and a continuous livestock (beef cattle) production system from 2005 to 2012. We use empirical case study data to characterize a ‘typical’ farm for each production system within the study region. We find that the integrated crop−livestock system has a higher annual net present value (NPV) per hectare (ha) than continuous cropping or livestock under a range of discount rates. However, under a scenario of substantially higher crop prices, the continuous cropping outperforms iCL. While iCL is not feasible in all regions of the Amazon and Cerrado, our results indicate that in places where the biophysical and market conditions are suitable for production, it could be a highly profitable way to intensify cattle production and potentially spare land for other uses, including conservation. Nevertheless, additional credit and technical support may be needed to overcome high upfront costs and informational barriers to increase iCL areas as a sustainable development strategy for agriculture in the Amazon and Cerrado regions.
Changes in cardiac autonomic regulation, expressed by increased sympathetic activity and decreased heart rate variability, have an important relationship with the onset of lethal cardiac phenomena. Therefore, we aimed to evaluate the cardiac autonomic behaviour in young people according to their level of physical activity. Through the International Physical Activity Questionnaire, 55 healthy young non-smokers with no history of previous diseases and whose parents did not suffer from metabolic syndrome were assessed and divided into groups: sedentary (n=12), insufficiently active (n=16), active (n=14), and very active (n=13). We collected respiratory rate, systolic and diastolic blood pressure at rest, and body mass index. Subjects remained supine at rest, and without mental stress for 15 minutes in a controlled environment. Using a cardiofrequency meter (Polar® RS800CX), data were analysed in the time domain, frequency domain, and detrended fluctuation analysis. For the sedentary group, the mean RR and rMSSD were significantly lower, and the insufficiently active group showed higher means, but significantly only for rMSSD. The insufficiently active group showed in the detrended fluctuation analysis that α2 was significantly lower compared with the sedentary, active, and very active groups. We conclude that young, healthy, sedentary individuals present an increased heart rate and that insufficiently active individuals present a decreased fractal correlation and increased parasympathetic activity.
The causes of the beaching and death of sea turtles have not been fully clarified and continue to be studied. Mild, moderate and severe lesions caused by spirorchiidiosis have been seen for decades in different organs and were recently defined as the cause of death of a loggerhead turtle. In the present study, eyes and optic nerves were analysed in green sea turtles with spirorchiidiosis and no other debilitating factors. Injuries to the optic nerve and choroid layer were described in 235 animals (90%) infected with spirorchiids. Turtles with ocular spirorchiidiosis are approximately three times more likely to be cachectic than turtles with spirorchiidiosis without ocular involvement.
Tropical montane cloud forests (TMCFs) are characterised principally by frequent immersion in ground-level clouds, which influences their structure. This study aimed to characterise TMCFs in Serra do Papagaio State Park, Minas Gerais State, Southeast Brazil, and to test the hypothesis that TMCF areas can be highly heterogeneous by comparing the tree species composition and structural parameters of 10 TMCF patches in the studied landscape. TMCFs of Serra do Papagaio State Park are of particular interest for conservation, because they contain important populations of threatened tree species.
Many studies have documented robust relationships between depression and hopelessness and subsequent suicidal thoughts and behaviours; however, much weaker and non-significant effects have also been reported. These inconsistencies raise questions about whether and to what degree these factors confer risk for suicidal thoughts and behaviours.
This study aimed to evaluate the magnitude and clinical utility of depression and hopelessness as risk factors for suicide ideation, attempts and death.
We conducted a meta-analysis of published studies from 1971 to 31 December 2014 that included at least one longitudinal analysis predicting suicide ideation, attempt or death using any depression or hopelessness variable.
Overall prediction was weaker than anticipated, with weighted mean odds ratios of 1.96 (1.81–2.13) for ideation, 1.63 (1.55–1.72) for attempt and 1.33 (1.18–1.49) for death. Adjusting for publication bias further reduced estimates. Effects generally persisted regardless of sample severity, sample age or follow-up length.
Several methodological constraints were prominent across studies; addressing these issues would likely be fruitful moving forward.
This study evaluated the effects of diet containing taro flour on hormone levels and the seminiferous tubules morphology of rats. After weaning, the male rats were divided into two groups (n=12 each): control group (CG) treated with control diet and taro group (TG), fed with 25% taro flour for 90 days. Food, caloric intake, mass and body length were evaluated at experiment end. Testis followed the standard histological processing. Immunostaining was performed using an anti-vimentin antibody to identify Sertoli cells. In histomorphometry, total diameter, total area, epithelial height, luminal height and luminal area were analyzed. The testosterone levels were performed using the radioimmunoassay method. Group TG presented (P<0.05): increase in mass, body length, testicular weight, histomorphometric parameters and hormonal levels. Food intake, calorie and Sertoli cells not presented statistical differences. The taro promoted increase in the testicles parameters and hormones.
Research has long noted higher prevalence rates of suicidal thoughts and behaviors among individuals with psychotic symptoms. Major theories have proposed several explanations to account for this association. Given the differences in the literature regarding the operationalization of psychosis and sample characteristics, a quantitative review is needed to determine to what extent and how psychosis confers risk for suicidality.
We searched PsycInfo, PubMed, and GoogleScholar for studies published before 1 January 2016. To be included in the analysis, studies must have used at least one psychosis-related factor to longitudinally predict suicide ideation, attempt, or death. The initial search yielded 2541 studies. Fifty studies were retained for analysis, yielding 128 statistical tests.
Suicide death was the most commonly studied outcome (43.0%), followed by attempt (39.1%) and ideation (18.0%). The median follow-up length was 7.5 years. Overall, psychosis significantly conferred risk across three outcomes, with weighted mean ORs of 1.70 (1.39–2.08) for ideation, 1.36 (1.25–1.48) for attempt, and 1.40 (1.14–1.72) for death. Detailed analyses indicated that positive symptoms consistently conferred risk across outcomes; negative symptoms were not significantly associated with ideation, and were protective against death. Some small moderator effects were detected for sample characteristics.
Psychosis is a significant risk factor for suicide ideation, attempt, and death. The finding that positive symptoms increased suicide risk and negative symptoms seemed to decrease risk sheds light on the potential mechanisms for the association between psychosis and suicidality. We note several limitations of the literature and offer suggestions for future directions.
This paper presents an inspection system integrated into an on-ground autonomous platform with range of approximately 80 km. The vehicle is prepared to autonomously cover a field following a predefined route plan. Two types of cameras were integrated in the platform. An RGB-D sensor and a reflex camera were placed in a fixture and connected to a high-performance computer. The heterogeneous information acquired from the RGB-D was later integrated to automatically generate 3D maps of the crops by using custom software developed in the authors’ previous work. The inspection system performance was tested in actual vineyards by conducting several samplings in 2016. Results show that the proposed technology is viable and can provide complementary information to other inspection alternatives.
There is an increasing interest in improving neurocysticercosis (NCC) diagnosis through the search of new and alternative antigenic sources, as those obtained from heterologous antigens. The aim of this study was to obtain potential biomarkers for NCC diagnosis after gel filtration chromatography [gel filtration fraction (GFF)] from the total saline extract (SE) from Taenia saginata metacestodes, followed by protein identification and application in immunodiagnostic. SE and GFF proteic profiles were characterized in gel electrophoresis, and diagnostic performance was verified by testing 160 serum samples through enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and immunoblotting. Sensitivity (Se), specificity (Sp) and other diagnostic parameters were calculated. Polypeptides of interest in the diagnosis of human NCC present at GFF were analysed by mass spectrometry (MS) and B-cell epitopes were predicted. GFF had the best diagnostic parameters: Se 93·3%; Sp 93%; AUC 0·990; LR+ = 13·42 and LR− = 0·07, and proved to be useful reacting with serum samples in immunoblotting. Proteic profile ranged from 64 to 68 kDa and enolase and calcium binding protein calreticulin precursor were identified after MS. The enolase and calcium-binding protein calreticulin precursor showed 18 and 10 predicted B-cell epitopes, respectively. In conclusion we identified important markers in the GFF with high efficiency to diagnose NCC.
Rhodnius prolixus is a blood-feeding insect that transmits Trypanosoma cruzi and Trypanosoma rangeli to vertebrate hosts. Rhodnius prolixus is also a classical model in insect physiology, and the recent availability of R. prolixus genome has opened new avenues on triatomine research. Glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK-3) is classically described as a key enzyme involved in glycogen metabolism, also acting as a downstream component of the Wnt pathway during embryogenesis. GSK-3 has been shown to be highly conserved among several organisms, mainly in the catalytic domain region. Meanwhile, the role of GSK-3 during R. prolixus embryogenesis or glycogen metabolism has not been investigated. Here we show that chemical inhibition of GSK-3 by alsterpaullone, an ATP-competitive inhibitor of GSK3, does not affect adult survival rate, though it alters oviposition and egg hatching. Specific GSK-3 gene silencing by dsRNA injection in adult females showed a similar phenotype. Furthermore, bright field and 4’−6-diamidino-2-phenylindole (DAPI) staining analysis revealed that ovaries and eggs from dsGSK-3 injected females exhibited specific morphological defects. We also demonstrate that glycogen content was inversely related to activity and transcription levels of GSK-3 during embryogenesis. Lastly, after GSK-3 knockdown, we observed changes in the expression of the Wingless (Wnt) downstream target β-catenin as well as in members of other pathways such as the receptor Notch. Taken together, our results show that GSK-3 regulation is essential for R. prolixus oogenesis and embryogenesis.
Modifying the extent of fatty acid (FA) biohydrogenation (BH) in the rumen through diet formulation is an effective strategy for changing the content of unsaturated FAs (USFAs) in meat. The present study investigated the effects of different sources of forage in high-concentrate diets on intake, digestibility, rumen fermentation, ruminal BH, duodenal flow of FAs and rumen microbiota in Nellore steers. Intake of neutral detergent fibre (NDF) was higher in animals fed with maize silage (MS) than in those fed with sugar cane (SC) and sugar cane bagasse (SB). Higher digestibility of dry matter and NDF was found in animals fed with MS than in those fed with the other diets. In addition, higher crude protein digestibility was observed in animals fed with sugar cane bagasse than in those fed with SC. Non-fibre carbohydrate (NFC) digestibility was higher in animals fed with sugar cane than in those fed with the other diets. Intake of total and individual FAs such as C18 : 1 cis-9, C18 : 2, and C18 : 3 was similar between animals fed with MS and SB, but decreased in animals fed with SC. Diets containing MS and SB showed higher total digestibility of saturated FAs (SFAs) and USFAs, respectively and total FAs and ruminal BH of C18 : 1 and USFA. Intestinal digestibility of overall FAs did not differ among treatments, except for C18 : 3, which increased in animals fed with SC and SB. The profile of FAs in duodenal digesta and faecal outputs did not differ among treatments. However, the flow of NDF was higher in animals fed with SC than in those fed with MS and SB. Animals fed with SB showed higher values of pH than those fed with MS and SC. Animals fed with SC showed lower values of ammonia-nitrogen. Protozoan counts were only influenced by diet for species that belonged to the genera Dasytricha and Isotricha. Populations of fibrolytic bacteria (Ruminococus flavefaciens, Ruminococus albus and Fibrobacter succinogenes) were similar among diets. Populations of Selenomonas ruminantium increased 2·5 and 5 times in animals fed with MS when compared with those fed with SC and SB, respectively. The use of MS increased intake and digestibility of NDF, and the use of SC decreased ruminal BH of total USFA without changing the flow of FAs to the duodenum. Thus, different sources of forage in high-concentrate diets do not modify the duodenal flow of USFA or fibrolytic bacteria. This must be taken into account when formulating diets to modulate ruminal upsets without altering intake.
Management strategies for increasing ruminant legume consumption and mitigating methane emissions from tropical livestock production systems require further study. The aim of this work was to evaluate the herbage intake, animal performance and enteric methane emissions of cattle grazing dwarf elephant grass (DEG) (Pennisetum purpureum cv. BRS Kurumi) alone or DEG with peanut (Arachis pintoi cv. Amarillo). The experimental treatments were the following: DEG pastures receiving nitrogen fertilization (150 kg N/ha as ammonium nitrate) and DEG intercropped with peanut plus an adjacent area of peanut that was accessible to grazing animals for 5 h/day (from 0700 to 1200 h). The animals grazing legume pastures showed greater average daily gain and herbage intake, and shorter morning and total grazing times. Daily methane emissions were greater from the animals grazing legume pastures, whereas methane emissions per unit of herbage intake did not differ between treatments. Allowing animals access to an exclusive area of legumes in a tropical grass-pasture-based system can improve animal performance without increasing methane production per kg of dry matter intake.
Obesity and osteoporosis may have their origins in early postnatal life. This study was designed to evaluate whether flaxseed flour use during lactation period bears effect on body adiposity and skeletal structure of male rat pups at weaning. At birth, male Wistar rats were randomly assigned to control and experimental (FF) groups, whose dams were treated with control or flaxseed flour diet, respectively, during lactation. At 21 days of age, pups were weaned to assess body mass, length and composition by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry. The animals were then sacrificed to carry out analysis of serum profile, intra-abdominal adipocyte morphology and femur characteristics. Differences were considered significant when P<0.05. The FF group displayed the following characteristics (P<0.05): higher body mass, length, bone mineral content, bone area and concentrations of osteoprotegerin, osteocalcin and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol; higher levels of stearic, α-linolenic, eicosapentaenoic and docosapentaenoic acids and lower levels of arachidonic acid and cholesterol; smaller adipocyte area; and higher mass, epiphysis distance, diaphysis width, maximal load, break load, resilience and stiffness of femur. Flaxseed flour intake during lactation period promoted adipocyte hypertrophy down-regulation and contributed to pup bone quality at weaning.
The aim of this study was analyzed if the flour or flaxseed oil treatment contributes to body composition in male rats subjected to early weaning. Pups were weaned for separation from mother at 14 (early weaning, EW) and 21 days (control, C). At 21 days, part of the pups was evaluated (C21 v. EW21). After 21 days, control (C60) was fed with control diet. EW was divided in control (EWC60); flaxseed flour (EWFF60); flaxseed oil (EWFO60) diets until 60 days. Body mass, length and body composition by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry were determined. EW21 (v. C21) and EWC60 (v. C60 and EWFF60) showed lower (P<0.05) mass, length and body composition. EWFO60 (v. C60 and EWFF60) showed lower (P<0.05) body mass and length, body and trunk lean mass, bone mineral density and content and bone area. Flaxseed flour, in comparison with flaxseed oil, contributes to recovery of body composition after early weaning.
A history of self-injurious thoughts and behaviors (SITBs) is consistently cited as one of the strongest predictors of future suicidal behavior. However, stark discrepancies in the literature raise questions about the true magnitude of these associations. The objective of this study is to examine the magnitude and clinical utility of the associations between SITBs and subsequent suicide ideation, attempts, and death.
We searched PubMed, PsycInfo, and Google Scholar for papers published through December 2014. Inclusion required that studies include at least one longitudinal analysis predicting suicide ideation, attempts, or death using any SITB variable. We identified 2179 longitudinal studies; 172 met inclusion criteria.
The most common outcome was suicide attempt (47.80%), followed by death (40.50%) and ideation (11.60%). Median follow-up was 52 months (mean = 82.52, s.d. = 102.29). Overall prediction was weak, with weighted mean odds ratios (ORs) of 2.07 [95% confidence interval (CI) 1.76–2.43] for ideation, 2.14 (95% CI 2.00–2.30) for attempts, and 1.54 (95% CI 1.39–1.71) for death. Adjusting for publication bias further reduced estimates. Diagnostic accuracy analyses indicated acceptable specificity (86–87%) and poor sensitivity (10–26%), with areas under the curve marginally above chance (0.60–0.62). Most risk factors generated OR estimates of <2.0 and no risk factor exceeded 4.5. Effects were consistent regardless of sample severity, sample age groups, or follow-up length.
Prior SITBs confer risk for later suicidal thoughts and behaviors. However, they only provide a marginal improvement in diagnostic accuracy above chance. Addressing gaps in study design, assessment, and underlying mechanisms may prove useful in improving prediction and prevention of suicidal thoughts and behaviors.
The precocious interruption of lactation is a prime factor for developmental plasticity. Here we analyzed whether flour or flaxseed oil treatment contributes to body and brain mass in male rats subjected to early weaning. Pups were weaned for separation from their mother at 14 (early weaning, EW) and 21 days (control, C). At 21 days, some of the pups were evaluated (C21 v. EW21). After 21 days, control pups (C60) were fed a control diet. EW pups were divided into those fed a control diet (EWC60), those given flaxseed flour (EWFF60), and those given flaxseed oil (EWFO60) until 60 days. EW21 showed lower body and absolute brain mass and higher relative brain mass. At 60 days, EWC60 and EWFO60 had lower body mass. With regard to relative brain mass, EWC60 was heavier; EWFO60 had lower values compared with EWC60 and higher values compared with C60 and EWFF60. These results indicated that flaxseed flour, in comparison with flaxseed oil, contributes to brain development after EW.
The use of diets with increasing proportions of concentrate to fibre can ensure appropriate energy levels and result in greater efficiency in Nellore feedlot steers. It was hypothesized that higher proportions of concentrate in the diet of these Nellore steers may affect ruminal fermentation and microbiota as a consequence of ruminal pH reduction. The present study was conducted to evaluate the effect of diets with four different roughage (hay Tifton 85) : concentrate ratios on intake, digestibility, rumen fermentation and rumen microbiota of Nellore feedlot steers. Higher proportions of concentrate in the diet did not affect intake and digestibility of dry and organic matter. The concentration of N-NH3, total rumen volatile fatty acid, acetic (C2), butyric (C4), isobutyric, valeric and isovaleric acids, and microbial nitrogen did not differ among diets. However, increasing proportions of concentrate in the diet resulted in a linear reduction in average rumen pH and increased propionic acid (C3) concentration, resulting in lower relative C2 : C3. Bacterial population of Fibrobacter succinogenes, Ruminococus flavefaciens and Ruminococcus albus decreased in the rumen. However, bacteria that are consumers of lactic acid (Selenomonas ruminantium and Megasphaera elsdenii) and producers of lactic acid (Lactobacillus sp. and Streptococcus bovis) increased when animals were fed with high-concentrate diets. The total number of protozoa was similar for the different roughage : concentrate ratios. Protozoan counts were only influenced by diet for the genus Dasytricha. The findings point to diets with increasing concentrate to Tifton 85 hay ratios as inhibiting the growth of some cellulolytic bacteria and reducing fibre digestibility, and indicate Tifton 85 hay as a possible modulated rumen fermentation in the Nellore steer feedlot.