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To determine the effectiveness of ultraviolet (UV) environmental disinfection system on rates of hospital-acquired vancomycin-resistant enterococcus (VRE) and Clostridium difficile.
Using active surveillance and an interrupted time-series design, hospital-acquired acquisition of VRE and C. difficile on a bone marrow transplant (BMT) unit were examined before and after implementation of terminal disinfection with UV on all rooms regardless of isolation status of patients. The main outcomes were hospital-based acquisition measured through (1) active surveillance: admission, weekly, and discharge screening for VRE and toxigenic C. difficile (TCD) and (2) clinical surveillance: incidence of VRE and CDI on the unit.
Bone marrow transplant unit at a tertiary-care cancer center.
Stem cell transplant (SCT) recipients.
Terminal disinfection of all rooms with UV regardless of isolation status of patients.
During the 20-month study period, 579 patients had 704 admissions to the BMT unit, and 2,160 surveillance tests were performed. No change in level or trend in the incidence of VRE (trend incidence rate ratio [IRR], 0.96; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.81–1.14; level IRR, 1.34; 95% CI, 0.37–1.18) or C. difficile (trend IRR, 1.08; 95% CI, 0.89–1.31; level IRR, 0.51; 95% CI, 0.13–2.11) was observed after the intervention.
Utilization of UV disinfection to supplement routine terminal cleaning of rooms was not effective in reducing hospital-acquired VRE and C. difficile among SCT recipients.
Background: Patients suffering from traumatic brain injury (TBI) are at increased risk of venous thromboembolism (VTE). However, initiation of pharmacological venous thromboprophylaxis (VTEp) may cause further intracranial hemorrhage. We reviewed the literature to determine the postinjury time interval at which VTEp can be administered without risk of TBI evolution and hematoma expansion. Methods: MEDLINE and EMBASE databases were searched. Inclusion criteria were studies investigating timing and safety of VTEp in TBI patients not previously on oral anticoagulation. Two investigators extracted data and graded the papers’ levels of evidence. Randomized controlled trials were assessed for bias according to the Cochrane Collaboration Tool and Cohort studies were evaluated for bias using the Newcastle-Ottawa Scale. We performed univariate meta-regression analysis in an attempt to identify a relationship between VTEp timing and hemorrhagic progression and assess study heterogeneity using an I2 statistic. Results: Twenty-one studies were included in the systematic review. Eighteen total studies demonstrated that VTEp postinjury in patients with stable head computed tomography scan does not lead to TBI progression. Fourteen studies demonstrated that VTEp administration 24 to 72 hours postinjury is safe in patients with stable injury. Four studies suggested that administering VTEp within 24 hours of injury in patients with stable TBI does not lead to progressive intracranial hemorrhage. Overall, meta-regression analysis demonstrated that there was no relationship between rate of hemorrhagic progression and VTEp timing. Conclusions: Literature suggests that administering VTEp 24 to 48 hours postinjury may be safe for patients with low-hemorrhagic-risk TBIs and stable injury on repeat imaging.
The most extremely osmotolerant microbial isolates are fungi from high-sugar environments that tolerate the lowest water activity (0.61) for growth yet reported. Studies of osmotolerant bacteria have focused on halotolerance rather than sucretolerance (ability to grow in high sugar concentrations). A collection of salinotolerant (≥10% NaCl or ≥50% MgSO4) bacterial isolates from the Great Salt Plains of Oklahoma and Hot Lake in Washington were screened for sucretolerance in medium supplemented with ≥50% fructose, glucose or sucrose. Tolerances significantly differed between solutes, even though water activities for saline media (0.92 and 0.85 for 10 and 20% NaCl Salt Plains media, respectively) were comparable or lower than water activities for high-sugar media (0.93 and 0.90 for 50 and 70% sucrose artificial nectar media, respectively). These specific solute effects were differentially expressed among individual isolates. Extrapolating the results of earlier food science studies with yeasts at high sugar concentrations to bacteria in salty environments with low water activity should be done with caution. Furthermore, the discussion of habitable Special Regions on Mars and the icy worlds should reflect an understanding of specific solute effects.
Savage et al. (1977) found that the radio source PKS 1448-232 coincided with a stellar object of about magnitude 16.4 having an ultraviolet excess. A low resolution spectrum obtained with the Anglo-Australian Telescope (AAT) confirmed this object as a QSO with zem = 2.22 and revealed many absorption lines short-ward of the La emission. Consequently this object was included in a programme of spectroscopy at intermediate resolution with the AAT to investigate QSO absorption lines. Savage et al. have given a finding chart with an optical position of 14h48m09s.3, −23°17′10″ (1950.0). The radio fluxes are 0.40 Jy at 2.7 GHz and 0.31 Jy at 5.0 GHz.
Magnetic resonance imaging studies of maltreated children with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) suggest that maltreatment-related PTSD is associated with adverse brain development. Maltreated youth resilient to chronic PTSD were not previously investigated and may elucidate neuromechanisms of the stress diathesis that leads to resilience to chronic PTSD. In this cross-sectional study, anatomical volumetric and corpus callosum diffusion tensor imaging measures were examined using magnetic resonance imaging in maltreated youth with chronic PTSD (N = 38), without PTSD (N = 35), and nonmaltreated participants (n = 59). Groups were sociodemographically similar. Participants underwent assessments for strict inclusion/exclusion criteria and psychopathology. Maltreated youth with PTSD were psychobiologically different from maltreated youth without PTSD and nonmaltreated controls. Maltreated youth with PTSD had smaller posterior cerebral and cerebellar gray matter volumes than did maltreated youth without PTSD and nonmaltreated participants. Cerebral and cerebellar gray matter volumes inversely correlated with PTSD symptoms. Posterior corpus callosum microstructure in pediatric maltreatment-related PTSD differed compared to maltreated youth without PTSD and controls. The group differences remained significant when controlling for psychopathology, numbers of Axis I disorders, and trauma load. Alterations of these posterior brain structures may result from a shared trauma-related mechanism or an inherent vulnerability that mediates the pathway from chronic PTSD to comorbidity.
Commission 25 (C25) deals with the techniques and issues involved with the measurement of optical and infrared radiation intensities and polarization from astronomical sources. As such, in recent years attention has focused on photometric standard stars, atmospheric extinction, photometric passbands, transformation between systems, nomenclature, and observing and reduction techniques. At the start of the trimester C25 changed its name from Stellar Photometry and Polarization to Astronomical Photometry and Polarization so as to explicitly include in its mandate particular issues arising from the measurement of resolved sources, given the importance of photometric redshifts of distant galaxies for many of the large photometric surveys now underway. We begin by summarizing commission activities over the 2012-2014 period, follow with a report on Polarimetry, continue with Photometry topics that have been of interest to C25 members, and conclude with a Vision for the Future.
The aim of the present study was to investigate the mechanistic basis of protein deficiency during pregnancy in mother that is transduced to offspring. To this end, timed-pregnant Sprague–Dawley rats were fed either a control (20 % of energy from protein) or low-protein (LP, 8 % of energy from protein) diet during gestation. Tissues were collected after delivery from rat dams, and skeletal muscle was collected at postnatal day 38 from the offspring. Quantitative RT-PCR and Western blot analyses were performed to determine mRNA and protein levels. Histological analysis was performed to evaluate myofibre size. LP dams gained significantly less weight during pregnancy, developed muscle atrophy, and had significantly lower circulating threonine and histidine levels than control dams. The mRNA expression of the well-known amino acid response (AAR) pathway-related target genes was increased only in the skeletal muscle of LP dams, as well as the protein expression levels of activating transcription factor 4 (ATF4) and phosphorylated eukaryotic translation initiation factor 2α (p-eIF2α). The mRNA expression of autophagy-related genes was significantly increased in the skeletal muscle of LP dams. Moreover, the mRNA expression of genes involved in both AAR and autophagy pathways remained elevated and was memorised in the muscle of LP offspring that consumed a post-weaning control diet. Additionally, the LP diet increased an autophagy marker, microtubule-associated proteins 1A/1B light chain 3B (LC3B) protein expression in the skeletal muscle of rat dams, consistent with the initiation of autophagy. The LP diet further increased ATF4 binding at the predicted regions of AAR and autophagy pathway-related genes. Increased binding of ATF4 unveils the crucial role of ATF4 in the activation of autophagy in response to protein restriction. Our data suggest that molecular changes in maternal muscle are memorised in the offspring long after gestational protein restriction, reinforcing the role of maternal signalling in programming offspring health.
A series of laser pump, x-ray probe experiments show that above band gap photoexcitation can generate a large out-of-plane strain in multiferroic BiFeO3 thin films. The strain decays in a time scale that is the same as the photo-induced carriers measured in an optical transient absorption spectroscopy experiment. We attribute the strain to the piezoelectric effect due to screening of the depolarization field by laser induced carriers. A strong film thickness dependence of strain and carrier relaxation is also observed, revealing the role of the carrier transport in determining the structural and carrier dynamics in complex oxide thin films.
The challenges associated with meeting 20nm technology requirements for better Cu CMP process uniformity and lower defectivity have been studied. Required improvements in uniformity were obtained through platen process optimization along with evaluation & selection of specific Cu slurries and pads and their performance reported. The principal factors influencing defect formation, including Cu barrier metallurgy, interconnect pattern density and process queue times were studied. Specific new post CMP clean chemistries were evaluated to assess their capability to suppress defect formation and their performance reported. The trade off between uniformity and defect suppression as a function slurry, pad and post Cu CMP clean chemistry is described.
The National Science Foundation's National Science Digital Library (NSDL) Program is a premier collective portal of authoritative scientific resources supporting education and research. With funding from NSF, the Materials Digital Library (MatDL) is a collaborative project being developed by the National Institute of Standards and Technology's Materials Science and Engineering Laboratory (NIST/MSEL), the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the Department of Chemical Engineering and the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at the University of Michigan (U-M), with Kent State University and University of Colorado at Boulder providing the materials science informatics and workflow technology backbone. As part of the NSDL program, MatDL aims to supports the interface of materials science information and its cognate disciplines, with an emphasis on soft matter. Initial content of MatDL begins with resources selected from NIST/MSEL. Students and faculty in three types of materials science and engineering (MSE) courses at MIT and U-M are taking part in a pilot to use and contribute to MatDL utilizing domain-specific authoring tools. Given the central and interdisciplinary role of materials science in science and engineering, two goals of MatDL are to: 1.) expand its founding partnership with additional participants from the MSE community; and 2.) facilitate the flow of digital materials related knowledge from laboratories where the most recent research discoveries are taking place to the classrooms where new scientists are being trained.
Triple-quadrupole mass spectrometry (TQMS) showed disilane and aminosilanes, SiH4-n(NH2)n, to be the principal products of an ammonia-silane discharge. Disilane can be completely eliminated from the plasma by operating at high power and high NH3/SiH4 ratio, which results in almost complete conversion of silane to aminosilanes by reaction with activated ammonia. Films so grown had no detectable Si-H bonding and greatly reduced ESR spin density in the dark. The triaminosilane radical appears to be a key deposition precursor, progressively decomposing and condensing towards Si3N4 with increasing substrate temperature.
Conventional preparation of Si for epitaxy involves high-temperature heating to remove surface oxide or to remove H passivation left by HF cleaning. Attempted MBE on H-passivated Si(100) has resulted in amorphous films below 640 K. We show that the use of ion beam sputtered Si allows the growth of thick (300 nm) epitaxial layers on H-passivated Si(100) at high rate (0.65 nm/s) and at 483 K, well below the H desorption temperature. This is because the sputtered Si has translational kinetic energy of tens of eV, well above the Si-H bond strength of a few eV, so that the passivating H does not block the epitaxial bonding sites as it does in MBE. The ability to grow epitaxially on H-passivated Si not only reduces the maximum Si processing temperature required, but also keeps the substrate passivated against contamination until the onset of deposition.
During deposition, the LEED pattern changes gradually from the 1 × 1 of the H-passivated Si to the 2 × 1 reconstruction of bare or partially hydrogenated Si(1 00), yet SIMS shows that little of the disappearing H accumulates at the substrate interface or in the bulk of the film. Thermal desorption spectra show that its bonding remains similar to that on the substrate surface. Thus, it appears to float to the surface of the depositing film and become gradually knocked off of the surface over the course of a few hundred nm of deposition. Cross-sectional TEM lattice imaging shows near-perfect ordering of the epilayer and a barely distinguishable substrate interface.
The ultimate usefulness of oxynitride glasses and fibers depends upon the minimization or elimination of metallic defects that arise during processing. Despite this, the origins and chemistry of such defects in oxynitride glasses have received scant attention in the literature. The defects reduce glass transparency and cause oxynitride glass fibers to fail at relatively low stress levels. The same types of defects undoubtedly occur in the grain boundary glass phase of sintered Si3N4with unknown effects on material properties.
Exampls are shown of Si-rich metallic defects in oxynitride glasses, and their effects on glass and fiber properties are discussed. Chemical reactions that produce the defects are considered, as are chemical analysis results supporting the proposed reaction mechanisms.
In this study, the stress-deformation response of coal in the laboratory under threedimensional (3-D) loading conditions similar to those existing in an actual coal mine is investigated, and a constitutive model, including the effects of anisotropy, is developed. The coal samples were obtained from a mine in LeFlore County, Oklahoma, at a depth of approximately 25–30 ft below the ground surface. A High Capacity Cubical Device with servo-controlled independent loading along three axes of a cubical specimen and a computerized data acquisition and monitoring system were used to conduct the tests. A total of 21 tests under 4 different confining pressures and 5 different stress paths were conducted. The influence of the degree of anisotropy was investigated by comparing the transversely isotropic and isotropic idealizations for different stress paths (Triaxial Compression, Triaxial Extension and Simple Shear) at different confining pressures (1,600, 3,200 and 5,600 psi). The experimental results demonstrated that the coal exhibits inherent anisotropy and that it can be treated approximately as a transversely isotropic material. Also, the Young's moduli were found to be dependent on the confining pressure. The experimental data were used to evaluate the material constants associated with the elasto-plastic constitutive model developed in the study.
The sol-gel method for the preparation of ceramics and glasses has frequently been mentioned as more advantageous as compared to conventional methods. However, there are few known examples of a direct comparison for the same material. In the present work both the processing and resultant properties for ferroelectrics such as BaTiO3, KTaO3, KNbO3 and K(Ta,Nb)O3 made by both methods are directly compared. The uniformity is evaluated by high-angle x-ray diffraction, electron microscopy and EDAX and the dielectric properties are compared. The advantages and disadvantages of the sol-gel method are discussed.
In the ordinary application of the time-lag method to the measurement of the diffusion coefficient of a gas passing through a plane sheet of an inert solid, the gas is pressurized on one side of the sheet and evacuated on the other. After decay of transients, the cumulative amount, Q(t), of gas diffused through the sheet in time, t, assumes the “time-lag” form, Q(t) = A(t - L). Measurements of the slope, A, and the intercept, L, can be used to determine the diffusion coefficient and the solubility of the gas in the solid. We have rederived this law for the case of a solid which is actively evolving this same gas at an arbitrary rate and have used it to predict the rate of outgasing of the solid upon standing. Practical applications of the theory include radioactive decay of minerals, rejection of plasticizers by plastics, and the decomposition of solid rocket propellants.
Microstructural control is a critical issue in the use of diamond films in a variety of engineering applications. Using a novel, electrostatic-based particle seeding process, we have investigated the deposition of diamond films with varying areal nucleation densities. Depositions were performed at 1.000 Torr in a modified electron cyclotron resonance plasma system. Methyl alcohol was the primary diamond precursor species. SEM and Raman spectroscopy were used to evaluate microstructure and composition characteristics. Comparisons in deposition characteristics were made based on relative nucleation density.