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With the aim to elucidate gonococcal antimicrobial resistance (AMR)–risk factors, we undertook a retrospective analysis of the molecular epidemiology and AMR of 104 Neisseria gonorrhoeae isolates from clinical samples (urethra, rectum, pharynx and cervix) of 94 individuals attending a sexually transmitted infection clinic in Madrid (Spain) from July to October 2016, and explored potential links with socio-demographic, behavioural and clinical factors of patients. Antimicrobial susceptibility was determined by E-tests, and isolates were characterised by N. gonorrhoeae multi-antigen sequence typing. Penicillin resistance was recorded for 15.4% of isolates, and most were susceptible to tetracycline, cefixime and azithromycin; a high incidence of ciprofloxacin resistance (~40%) was found. Isolates were grouped into 51 different sequence types (STs) and 10 genogroups (G), with G2400, ST5441, ST2318, ST12547 and G2992 being the most prevalent. A significant association (P = 0.015) was evident between HIV-positive MSM individuals and having a ciprofloxacin-resistant strain. Likewise, a strong association (P = 0.047) was found between patient age of MSM and carriage of isolates expressing decreased susceptibility to azithromycin. A decrease in the incidence of AMR gonococcal strains and a change in the strain populations previously reported from other parts of Spain were observed. Of note, the prevalent multi-drug resistant genogroup G1407 was represented by only three strains in our study, while the pan-susceptible clones such as ST5441, and ST2318, associated with extragenital body sites were the most prevalent.
This study aimed to evaluate the effects of toxic baits and attractants for fruit flies on the biology of its parasitoid Fopius arisanus. We tested two food-based attractants; hydrolysed corn protein (Biofruit® 3%) and sugarcane molasses (7%), their mixtures with spinosad and malathion-based insecticides, and a ready-to-use commercial bait (Success 0.02 CB®). Malathion-based lures were used as references for mortality (i.e., positive control), while negative control was honey. The formulations Biofruit® + malathion (T1), molasses + malathion (T2), and spinosad + molasses (T3) were toxic to F. arisanus, being classified as harmful (class 4). In addition, toxic baits composed of Biofruit + spinosad (T4) reduced parasitism by 97.99%, being rated as moderately harmful (class 3). Yet, Success 0.02 CB® (T7) was considered slightly toxic (class 2), causing a 64.55% reduction in parasitism. Regarding the biological parameters of F. arisanus, offspring number and parasitoid longevity were significantly reduced by using hydrolysed protein attractants when compared to the control (honey). However, sugarcane molasses improved parasitoid reproduction and longevity, as did the honey. Lastly, ingestion tests showed the major role of attractants in toxic-bait formulations against F. arisanus.
Residual feed intake (RFI) is an alternative measure of feed efficiency (FE) and is calculated as the difference between actual and expected feed intake. The biological mechanisms underlying animal-to-animal variation in FE are not well understood. The aim of this study was to investigate the digestive ability of beef cows selected for RFI divergence as heifers, using two contrasted diets. Fifteen 4-year-old beef cows were selected from a total of 69 heifers based on their RFI following the feedlot test. The selected heifers were ranked into high-RFI (+ 1.02 ± 0.28, n = 8) and low-RFI (−0.73 ± 0.28, n = 7), and a digestibility trial was performed after their first lactation. Both RFI groups were offered two different diets: 100% hay or a fattening diet which consisted of a DM basis of 67% whole-plant maize silage and 33% high starch concentrates over four experimental periods (two per diet). A diet effect was observed on feed intake and apparent digestibility, whereas no diet × RFI interaction was detected (P > 0.05). Intake and apparent digestibility were higher in cows fed the fattening diet than in those fed the hay diet (P < 0.0001). DM intake (DMI) and organic matter apparent digestibility (OMd) were repeatable and positively correlated between the two subsequent periods of measurements. For the hay and fattening diets, the repeatability between periods was r = 0.71 and r = 0.73 for DMI and r = 0.87 and r = 0.48 for OMd, respectively. Moreover, both intake (r = 0.55) and OMd (r = 0.54) were positively correlated (P < 0.05) between the hay and fattening diets. Significant differences between beef cows selected for divergence in RFI as heifers were observed for digestive traits (P < 0.05), DM and organic matter (OM) apparent digestibility being higher for low-RFI cows. Overall, this study showed that apparent digestibility contributes to between-animal variation in FE in beef cows.
Crossbreeding represents an important technique to improve growth, beef quality and adaptability in beef production systems in tropical countries. The aim of this study was to evaluate sire and dam breed effects on performance and carcass traits of crossbred cattle produced in a tropical environment. Heifers and steers were evaluated during the pre-weaning, the post-weaning (n = 173) and the finishing phase (n = 123). Animals were produced by mating Nellore (N_N), Angus × Nellore (A_N) and Caracu × Nellore (C_N) dams with Braford, Charbray and Caracu sires. After weaning, animals were raised grazing on Marandu grass for 12 months; thereafter they were housed in individual pens and finished in a feedlot, receiving a total mixed ration. Ultrasound carcass evaluations were performed to determine ribeye area (R_A), backfat thickness (B_T) and rump fat thickness (R_T). A_N progeny were heavier at birth than N_N (P < 0.05), and Braford progeny had greater birth BW than Caracu (P < 0.05). Greater weaning BW was observed in the A_N and C_N offspring compared to N_N (P < 0.01). Greater average daily gain during the post-weaning period was verified in the N_N progeny compared to C_N (P < 0.05). No dam or sire breed effects were observed for BW at the end of the post-weaning period (P > 0.05). Progeny of N_N cows had greater B_T (P < 0.05) and R_T (P < 0.01) at the end of the post-weaning period in relation to C_N. Greater R_A was observed in the Caracu progeny than in the Braford (P < 0.05), which showed greater R_T than the Charbray progeny at the end of the post-weaning period (P < 0.05). No dam or sire breed effects were verified for final BW at the feedlot or for feed efficiency traits (P > 0.05). A_N progeny were superior in final B_T compared to C_N (P < 0.01), and Braford progeny had greater R_T at the end of finishing than Charbray (P = 0.05). The use of crossbred dams allows an increase in productivity until weaning, but this is not maintained in the post-weaning and finishing periods. The use of Braford sires produces similar growth performance in the different stages of the production system to those seen with Charbray and Caracu sires but generates animals with higher fat thickness at the end of finishing, which may improve carcass quality and commercial value.
Measurements in the infrared wavelength domain allow direct assessment of the physical state and energy balance of cool matter in space, enabling the detailed study of the processes that govern the formation and evolution of stars and planetary systems in galaxies over cosmic time. Previous infrared missions revealed a great deal about the obscured Universe, but were hampered by limited sensitivity.
SPICA takes the next step in infrared observational capability by combining a large 2.5-meter diameter telescope, cooled to below 8 K, with instruments employing ultra-sensitive detectors. A combination of passive cooling and mechanical coolers will be used to cool both the telescope and the instruments. With mechanical coolers the mission lifetime is not limited by the supply of cryogen. With the combination of low telescope background and instruments with state-of-the-art detectors SPICA provides a huge advance on the capabilities of previous missions.
SPICA instruments offer spectral resolving power ranging from R ~50 through 11 000 in the 17–230 μm domain and R ~28.000 spectroscopy between 12 and 18 μm. SPICA will provide efficient 30–37 μm broad band mapping, and small field spectroscopic and polarimetric imaging at 100, 200 and 350 μm. SPICA will provide infrared spectroscopy with an unprecedented sensitivity of ~5 × 10−20 W m−2 (5σ/1 h)—over two orders of magnitude improvement over what earlier missions. This exceptional performance leap, will open entirely new domains in infrared astronomy; galaxy evolution and metal production over cosmic time, dust formation and evolution from very early epochs onwards, the formation history of planetary systems.
The aim of the present work was to address experimentally the possible impact of exposure to air pollution during gestation on the differentiation and function of the gonads of the offspring using a rabbit model. Rabbits were exposed daily to diluted diesel exhaust gas or filtered air from the 3rd until the 27th day of gestation, during which time germ cells migrate in genital ridges and divide, and fetal sex is determined. Offspring gonads were collected shortly before birth (28th day of gestation) or after puberty (7.5 months after birth). The structure of the gonads was analyzed by histological and immunohistological methods. Serum concentrations of testosterone and anti-Müllerian hormone were determined using ELISA. The morphology and the endocrine function of the gonads collected just at the arrest of the exposure were similar in polluted and control animals in both sexes. No differences were observed as well in gonads collected after puberty. Sperm was collected at the head of the epididymis in adults. Sperm motility and DNA fragmentation were measured. Among all parameters analyzed, only the sperm DNA fragmentation rate was increased three-fold in exposed males. Mechanisms responsible for these modifications and their physiological consequences are to be further clarified.
Previous studies have shown that the interaction between limiting vitamin A (VA) and an alcohol dehydrogenase 1 C (ADH1C) variant in beef cattle results in increased intramuscular fat in the longissimus thoracis muscle in one genotype when fed low dietary VA. Although quality grade is important for increased profitability and improving taste characteristics of beef products, limiting VA too drastically can impair animal welfare. The objectives of this study were to determine if this marker-assisted management strategy would be effective, and whether any impairment in immune function would occur in a feedlot setting. Mixed breed beef steers (n=2000) were sorted into 40 feedlot pens so that all combinations of ADH1C genotype (TT or CT), VA level (50% or 100% of recommended) and hormonal implant status (implanted (IMP) or non-implanted (NI)) were equally represented within the population. The VA×ADH1C interaction was not observed. An implant status × ADH1C interaction was observed with average daily gain (ADG; P=0.03). Steers that were IMP and CT had higher ADG than IMP TT (CT=1.69 and TT=1.62 kg/day), whereas both genotypes in the NI steers were lower (CT=1.29 and TT=1.32 kg/day). Implant status was shown to affect dry matter intake (DMI; IMP=8.55 and NI=7.87 kg; P<0.01), total days-on-feed (IMP=164.4 and NI 210.5 days; P<0.01), USDA yield grade (YIELD; IMP=2.40 and NI=2.77; P<0.01), marbling score (MARB; IMP=392 and NI=455; P<0.01), longissimus thoracis area (LTA; IMP=85.0 and NI=80.7 cm2; P=0.01) and backfat thickness (FAT; IMP=8.0 and NI 10.0 mm; P<0.01). Overall, IMP animals finished on fewer total days-on-feed with higher ADG, DMI, larger LTA, and lower YIELD, MARB and FAT. To investigate immune function parameters, crossbred steers (n=18) were selected from a prior feeding trial so that all combinations of ADH1C (TT, CT and CC) and VA (25% or 75%) were equally represented. Blood cell count analysis and peripheral blood mononuclear cell proliferation and stimulation assays were conducted. None of these immune parameters were affected by VA level. Treatment and mortality records were examined in the 2000 steer population, where no correlations with ADH1C, implant status or VA level were observed. Due to no VA × ADH1C interaction, this nutrigenetic marker-assisted management strategy is not effective at this time in commercial beef cattle feedlots, however, supplementing VA at a level as low as 25% of recommended in finishing rations would likely not result in signs of immune dysfunction.
Animal evidence has suggested that maternal emotional and nutritional stress during pregnancy is associated with behavioral outcomes in offspring. The nature of the stresses applied may differ, but it is often assumed that the mother’s hippocampus–hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal (HHPA) axis response releases higher levels of glucocorticoid hormones. The bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BNST) is in a pivotal position to regulate the HHPA axis and the stress response, and it has been implicated in anxiety behavior. In the current study, to search whether BNST structural changes and neurochemical alterations are associated with anxiety-related behavior in adult gestational protein-restricted offspring relative to an age-matched normal protein diet (NP) rats, we conduct behavioral tests and, BNST dendritic tree analysis by Sholl analysis, associated to immunoblotting–protein quantification [11β-HSD2, GR, MR, AT1R, 5HT1A and 5HT2A, corticotrophin-releasing factor (CRH) and CRH1]. Dams were maintained either on isocaloric standard rodent chow [with NP content, 17% casein or low protein content (LP), 6% casein] chow throughout their entire pregnancy. Here, in rats subjected to gestational protein restriction, we found: (a) a significant reduction in dendritic length and impoverished dendritic arborization in BNST neurons; (b) an elevated plasmatic corticosterone levels; and (c) associated with enhanced anxiety-like behavior when compared with age-matched NP offspring. Moreover, altered protein (11β-HSD2, GR, MR and type 1 CRH receptors) expressions may underlie the increase in anxiety-like behavior in LP offspring. This work represents the first demonstration that BNST developmental plasticity by maternal protein restriction, resulting in fine structural changes and neurochemical alterations that are associated with modified behavioral states.
Measurements of current rates of core-collapse supernovæ (CCSNe) suffer from significant uncertainties, probably due to the large fraction of CCSNe that explode in crowded regions which have bright background emission and significant dust extinction. Conventional optical (seeing-limited) SN surveys generally fail to detect them, but including them is crucial to the accurate determination of CCSN rates. Project SUNBIRD aims to tighten the present constraints on the fraction of CCSNe that are missed by conventional SN surveys. We are monitoring more than 25 dusty luminous infrared galaxies that are actively star-forming, for evidence of dust-obscured CCSNe, in an effort to characterise the population of CCSNes exploding in those nuclear regions of dusty LIRGs. We observe in the near-infrared, which is less affected by dust extinction compared to the optical; we are using Gemini South and Keck, and we make use of state-of-the-art laser guide-star adaptive optics instruments to achieve a spatial resolution <0’.1, which is sufficient to resolve close to the galactic nucleus.
During the project’s first year we discovered three CCSNe and one candidate one, with nuclear offsets as small as 200 pc, as cited in the poster. Aggregating the new discoveries with the CCSNe found in previous programmes employing AO, we compared the distribution of nuclear offsets of AO CCSN discoveries with all other documented CCSNe discovered in LIRGs. The poster showed that our method is singularly effective at uncovering CCSNe in the nuclear regions of LIRGs, and that while optical surveys dominate SNe discoveries far from a galaxy’s centre, near infra-red AO observations are needed to probe the regions within 1 kpc of the nucleus.
The young stellar object SVS 13 has been proposed as the powering source of the HH 7-11 objects. Recent observations have revealed that in the radio continuum (3.6-cm) the source is a binary separated by about 0.3 in the east-west direction. We present Very Large Array observations, made in the highest angular resolution A configuration, of H2O maser emission toward this source. Our data show that the H2O spots appear to be segregated in two velocity groups: a group with radial velocity similar to that of the ambient cloud (VLSR ⋍ 8 km s−1) that is associated with the western radio source, and a blueshifted (by ∼20 km s−1) velocity group that is associated with the eastern radio source. We discuss the possible implications of this observation.
Research on post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) course finds a substantial proportion of cases remit within 6 months, a majority within 2 years, and a substantial minority persists for many years. Results are inconsistent about pre-trauma predictors.
The WHO World Mental Health surveys assessed lifetime DSM-IV PTSD presence-course after one randomly-selected trauma, allowing retrospective estimates of PTSD duration. Prior traumas, childhood adversities (CAs), and other lifetime DSM-IV mental disorders were examined as predictors using discrete-time person-month survival analysis among the 1575 respondents with lifetime PTSD.
20%, 27%, and 50% of cases recovered within 3, 6, and 24 months and 77% within 10 years (the longest duration allowing stable estimates). Time-related recall bias was found largely for recoveries after 24 months. Recovery was weakly related to most trauma types other than very low [odds-ratio (OR) 0.2–0.3] early-recovery (within 24 months) associated with purposefully injuring/torturing/killing and witnessing atrocities and very low later-recovery (25+ months) associated with being kidnapped. The significant ORs for prior traumas, CAs, and mental disorders were generally inconsistent between early- and later-recovery models. Cross-validated versions of final models nonetheless discriminated significantly between the 50% of respondents with highest and lowest predicted probabilities of both early-recovery (66–55% v. 43%) and later-recovery (75–68% v. 39%).
We found PTSD recovery trajectories similar to those in previous studies. The weak associations of pre-trauma factors with recovery, also consistent with previous studies, presumably are due to stronger influences of post-trauma factors.
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.