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Heat stress due to increasing extremes in ambient temperature and humidity results in reduced semen quality in boars. This has caused reduced efficiency of the swine industry, requiring more boars to breed the same number of sows. Vitamins such as vitamin C (VC) and E (VE) have been shown to improve semen quality in boars. Recently, vitamin D has been shown to improve semen quality in boars. The purpose of this experiment was to evaluate the effects of increased supplemental vitamins on boar reproduction during the summer season in a commercial boar stud. One hundred and sixty Pig Improvement Company (PIC) terminal line boars (n = 32 per treatment) and 39 maternal, heat-sensitive boars (n = 7 or 8 per treatment) were randomly allocated to treatment and fed a corn and soybean meal-based diet adjusted based on individual boar body condition score. A control (CNT) diet was used that met PIC recommendations for boars. Increased supplementation of specific vitamins was given in the form of a top-dress and consisted of CNT wheat middlings, CNT plus VC (560 mg/day), CNT plus 25-hydroxy vitamin D3 (VD) (125 µg/day), CNT plus VE (275 mg/day) and CNT plus VC, VD and VE (CDE). The experiment was split into three periods based on maximum daily high temperatures in the barn, where period 1 was weeks 1 to 4, period 2 was weeks 5 to 11 and period 3 was weeks 12 to 14. Semen was collected from boars as needed using the stud’s normal production schedule and was analyzed for sperm quantity and quality characteristics. There were no dietary effects on semen volume, sperm concentration or total sperm production (P ≥ 0.553). Total motility of sperm was not impacted by diet (P = 0.115); although, VC tended (P = 0.064) to have a greater progressive motility than CDE. Percentages of morphologically normal sperm and normal acrosomes were not affected by dietary supplementation (P ≥ 0.157). Period effects were observed for most semen quality parameters, with quality generally becoming reduced over time. The present study demonstrates that increased supplementation of vitamins beyond PIC recommendations was not beneficial for boar reproduction during the summer.
Considerable numbers of exceptionally preserved conodont apparatuses with hyaline elements are present in the middle-upper Darriwilian (Middle Ordovician, Whiterockian) Winneshiek Konservat-Lagerstätte in northeastern Iowa. These fossils, which are associated with a restricted biota including other conodonts, occur in fine-grained clastic sediments deposited in a meteorite impact crater. Among these conodont apparatuses, the common ones are identified as Archeognathus primus Cullison, 1938 and Iowagnathus grandis new genus new species. The 6-element apparatus of A. primus comprises two pairs of archeognathiform (P) and one pair of coleodiform (S) elements. The 15-element apparatus of I. grandis n. gen. n. sp. is somewhat reminiscent of the prioniodinid type and contains ramiform elements of alate (one element) and digyrate, bipennate, or tertiopedate types (7 pairs). Both conodont taxa are characterized by giant elements and the preservation of both crowns and basal bodies, the latter not previously reported in Ordovician conodont apparatuses. Comparison of the apparatus size in the Winneshiek specimens with that of the Scottish Carboniferous soft-part-preserved conodont animals suggests that the Iowa animals were significantly larger than the latter. The apparatus of A. primus differs conspicuously from the apparatuses of the prioniodontid Promissum from the Upper Ordovician Soom Shale of South Africa although the apparatus architecture of I. grandis n. gen. n. sp. shows some similarity to it. Based on the Winneshiek collections, a new family Iowagnathidae in Conodonta is proposed.
Using principal component analysis, a climate index is developed to estimate the linkage between climate and crop yields. The indices based on three climate projections are then applied to forecast future crop yield responses. We identify spatial heterogeneity of crop yield responses to future climate change across a number of U.S. northern and southern states. The results indicate that future hotter/drier weather conditions will likely have significant negative impacts on southern states, whereas only mild impacts are expected in most northern states.
We studied the seasonal fluctuation of norovirus and other enteric viruses in Cameroon. Two hundred participants aged between 1 and 69 years were prospectively followed up. Each participant provided monthly faecal samples over a 12-month period. A total of 2484 samples were tested using multiplex real-time PCR assay for the detection of norovirus, rotavirus and enterovirus. The effect of weather variables and risk factors were analysed by Pearson correlation and bivariate analysis. Overall, enterovirus was the most commonly detected virus (21·6% of specimens), followed by norovirus (3·9%) and rotavirus (0·4%). Norovirus and enterovirus were detected throughout the year with a peak of norovirus detection at the beginning of the rainy season and a significant alternation of circulation of norovirus genogroups from one month to the next. Age <5 years and consumption of tap water were risk factors for norovirus infection. Better understanding of factors influencing transmission and seasonality may provide insights into the relationship between physical environment and risk of infection for these viruses.
Studies examining the association of dairy consumption with incident CHD have yielded inconsistent results. The current prospective study examined the association between dairy consumption and CHD in a population-based sample of older community-dwelling adults.
Baseline CHD risk factors were assessed and an FFQ was self-administered. Participants were followed for morbidity and mortality with periodic clinic visits and annual mailed questionnaires for an average of 16·2 years, with a 96 % follow-up rate for fatal and non-fatal CHD.
Participants were 751 men and 1008 women aged 50–93 years who attended a clinic visit in 1984–1987.
At baseline the mean age was 70·6 (sd 9·8) years for men and 70·1 (sd 9·3) years for women. Participants who developed CHD during follow-up were significantly older (P < 0·001), had higher BMI (P = 0·035) and higher total cholesterol (P = 0·050), and were more likely to be male (P < 0·001), diabetic (P = 0·011) and hypertensive (P < 0·001), than those who did not develop CHD. Multivariate regression analyses adjusting for age, BMI, diabetes, hypertension, LDL-cholesterol and oestrogen use (in women) indicated that women who consumed low-fat cheese ‘sometimes/often’ and women who consumed non-fat milk ‘sometimes/often’ had an increased risk of incident CHD (hazard ratio = 2·32; 95 % CI 1·57, 3·41) and CHD (hazard ratio = 1·48; 95 % CI 1·02, 2·16) compared with women who ‘never/rarely’ ate these dairy products.
Woman with higher intake of low-fat cheese and non-fat milk seem to have a higher risk of incident CHD. This needs further investigation considering recent evidence of cardiovascular benefits from certain dairy fat.
Cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) is an effective treatment for obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD) but access to CBT is limited. Internet-based CBT (ICBT) with therapist support is potentially a more accessible treatment. There are no randomized controlled trials testing ICBT for OCD. The aim of this study was to investigate the efficacy of ICBT for OCD in a randomized controlled trial.
Participants (n=101) diagnosed with OCD were randomized to either 10 weeks of ICBT or to an attention control condition, consisting of online supportive therapy. The primary outcome measure was the Yale–Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale (YBOCS) administered by blinded assessors.
Both treatments lead to significant improvements in OCD symptoms, but ICBT resulted in larger improvements than the control condition on the YBOCS, with a significant between-group effect size (Cohen's d) of 1.12 (95% CI 0.69–1.53) at post-treatment. The proportion of participants showing clinically significant improvement was 60% (95% CI 46–72) in the ICBT group compared to 6% (95% CI 1–17) in the control condition. The results were sustained at follow-up.
ICBT is an efficacious treatment for OCD that could substantially increase access to CBT for OCD patients. Replication studies are warranted.
The deposition of silicon films was investigated for the first time by the pulsed cathodic vacuum arc process. This method has been employed to take the advantages of its low deposition temperature, high deposition rate, and high-energy capabilities, coupled with its relatively low operational cost. Heavily doped silicon films were deposited on silicon and glass substrates at temperatures below 100°C with pulsed deposition rate of 0.2nm/A·s. Pulsed arc currents up to 400A in 1∼5ms pulse width with 20∼300 pulses per second were studied. Compared with the direct current (D.C.) cathodic vacuum arc, numerous possibilities exist for the pulsed arc deposition to suit specific targeted film growth. The characterization of the films was carried out by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and X-ray diffraction (XRD) in terms of materials morphological and structural properties. The production of high quality silicon film materials at low temperature would further enable the integration of microsystems with microelectronics.
The cuprate superconductors rapidly degrade in moisture and in the presence of organic compounds. A protection method has been developed with a coating process using sol/gel routes to the low temperature formation of oxide films. In contrast to traditional protective films, amorphous silica films formed from a solution precursors gave excellent protection and caused little degradation of the superconductors.
The protective abilities of the films were assessed by monitoring the degradation of Y1Ba2Cu307-d in the presence of 85% relative humidity at 85 C. Volume magnetic susceptibility, four-point probe resistivity, current density measurements and x-ray diffraction were performed. Without protection, degradation was almost complete within 30 minutes of exposure. With protection, superconducting properties were maintained even after 48 hours of exposure.
We have cloned a cDNA encoding a novel antigen from a Sarcoptes scabiei (Acari) cDNA library by immunoscreening with sera from S. scabiei-infected dogs. The antigen is encoded by a 2157 bp mRNA with a predicted open reading frame of 719 amino acids (molecular weight 79 kDa). Our sequence analysis identified the presence of a MADF domain in the N-terminus, and downstream of this domain there was a region of low sequence complexity. This latter region contained several blocks of triplets and quadruplets of polar amino acids (Asn, Gln and Ser), and these 3 amino acids represented 39·7% of all amino acids. The antigen was named Atypical Sarcoptes Antigen 1 (ASA1) since the MADF domain normally is found in proteins involved in transcriptional regulation. In addition, 15 out of 62 S. scabiei-infected dogs reacted with a purified recombinant version of ASA1 in Western blot analysis. With immunohistochemistry we could show that ASA1 is expressed throughout the parasite, and that IgG specific for ASA1 binds to the inside wall of the mite's burrow. To our knowledge, this is the first description of an antigen containing an MADF domain.
To describe the diversity in dietary patterns existing across centres/regions participating in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC).
Design and setting:
Single 24-hour dietary recall measurements were obtained by means of standardised face-to-face interviews using the EPIC-SOFT software. These have been used to present a graphic multi-dimensional comparison of the adjusted mean consumption of 22 food groups.
In total, 35 955 men and women, aged 35–74 years, participating in the EPIC nested calibration study.
Although wide differences were observed across centres, the countries participating in EPIC are characterised by specific dietary patterns. Overall, Italy and Greece have a dietary pattern characterised by plant foods (except potatoes) and a lower consumption of animal and processed foods, compared with the other EPIC countries. France and particularly Spain have more heterogeneous dietary patterns, with a relatively high consumption of both plant foods and animal products. Apart from characteristics specific to vegetarian groups, the UK ‘health-conscious’ group shares with the UK general population a relatively high consumption of tea, sauces, cakes, soft drinks (women), margarine and butter. In contrast, the diet in the Nordic countries, The Netherlands, Germany and the UK general population is relatively high in potatoes and animal, processed and sweetened/refined foods, with proportions varying across countries/centres. In these countries, consumption of vegetables and fruit is similar to, or below, the overall EPIC means, and is low for legumes and vegetable oils. Overall, dietary patterns were similar for men and women, although there were large gender differences for certain food groups.
There are considerable differences in food group consumption and dietary patterns among the EPIC study populations. This large heterogeneity should be an advantage when investigating the relationship between diet and cancer and formulating new aetiological hypotheses related to dietary patterns and disease.
To evaluate the consumption of added fats and oils across the European centres and countries participating in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC).
Design and setting:
24-Hour dietary recalls were collected by means of standardised computer-guided interviews in 27 redefined EPIC centres across 10 European countries.
From an initial number of 36 900 subjects, single dietary recalls from 22 924 women and 13 031 men in the age range of 35–74 years were included.
Mean daily intake of added fats and oils varied between 16.2 g (Varese, Italy) and 41.1 g (Malmö, Sweden) in women and between 24.7 g (Ragusa, Italy) and 66.0 g (Potsdam, Germany) in men. Total mean lipid intake by consumption of added fats and oils, including those used for sauce preparation, ranged between 18.3 (Norway) and 37.2 g day−1 (Greece) in women and 28.4 (Heidelberg, Germany) and 51.2 g day−1 (Greece) in men. The Mediterranean EPIC centres with high olive oil consumption combined with low animal fat intake contrasted with the central and northern European centres where fewer vegetable oils, more animal fats and a high proportion of margarine were consumed. The consumption of added fats and oils of animal origin was highest in the German EPIC centres, followed by the French. The contribution of added fats and oils to total energy intake ranged from 8% in Norway to 22% in Greece.
The results demonstrate a high variation in dietary intake of added fats and oils in EPIC, providing a good opportunity to elucidate the role of dietary fats in cancer aetiology.
The burrowing mite Sarcoptes scabiei is the causative agent of the highly contagious disease sarcoptic mange or scabies. So far, there is no in vitro propagation system for S. scabiei available, and mites used for various purposes must be isolated from infected hosts. Lack of parasite-derived material has limited the possibilities to study several aspects of scabies, including pathogenesis and immunity. It has also hampered the development of high performance serological assays. We have now constructed an S. scabiei cDNA expression library with mRNA purified from mites isolated from red foxes. Immunoscreening of the library enabled us to clone a full-length cDNA coding for a 102.5 kDa protein. Sequence similarity searches identified the protein as a paramyosin. Recombinant S. scabiei paramyosin expressed in Escherichia coli was recognized by sera from dogs and swine infected with S. scabiei. We also designed a small paramyosin construct of about 17 kDa that included the N-terminal part, an evolutionary variable part of the helical core, and the C-terminal part of the molecule. The miniaturized protein was efficiently expressed in E. coli and was recognized by sera from immunized rabbits. These data demonstrate that the cDNA library can assist in the isolation of important S. scabiei antigens and that recombinant proteins can be useful for the study of scabies.
This is a review of research carried out in Japanese Americans that points towards possible approaches to prevention of type 2 diabetes mellitus. The natural history of type 2 diabetes usually includes both insulin resistance and β-cell dysfunction. Insulin secretion may compensate for insulin resistance. Alternatively, enhanced insulin sensitivity may mask an insulin secretory defect. Epidemiological data support the view that in the vast majority of cases of type 2 diabetes, insulin resistance is essential to the pathogenesis of hyperglycemia. Increased diabetes prevalence as ethnic groups migrate to more urban or westernized regions has been attributed to increased occurrence of insulin resistance. Research among Japanese Americans in Seattle, Washington, showed a higher prevalence of type 2 diabetes than in Japan, which suggested that factors associated with ‘westernization’ might be playing a role in bringing out underlying susceptibility to diabetes. Our research has shown that these impressions were correct and that the abnormalities that characterize the metabolic syndrome play a significant role. Due to increased intra-abdominal fat deposition, Japanese Americans were likely to be ‘metabolically obese’ despite relatively normal BMI. A diet higher in animal fat and lower levels of physical activity were risk factors leading to increased intra-abdominal fat deposition, insulin resistance, and diabetes. Information from epidemiological studies such as these may be used to determine whether diabetes may be prevented through changes in lifestyle or application of specific therapies targeted towards identified metabolic abnormalities.
To identify Stagonospora avenae genetically, 53 isolates
from Europe and North America were assessed by RFLP analysis and internal
transcribed spacer (ITS) sequence polymorphisms in comparison with isolates
S. nodorum, S. arenaria and Septoria tritici.
also provided insight on possible phylogenetic divergence within the species
currently identified by characteristic conidial morphology
as S. avenae. Isolates from Europe, Canada, Minnesota and North
showed little genetic variation. In RFLP and ITS sequence
analyses, S. avenae isolates from New York and ATCC 12277 (origin
unknown) had a closer relationship with barley-biotype
S. nodorum, and S. avenae f. sp. triticea isolates
of ATCC 26370 and ATCC 26377 from Minnesota were closely associated with
wheat-biotype S. nodorum. Enzyme restrictions of ITS PCR-amplified
could facilitate the identification of Stagonospora on cereals.
The economic impacts of recreational visits to state parks on the economies of North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and Tennessee were estimated using the U.S. Forest Service IMPLAN input-output modeling system. Recreational expenditure data associated with state parks were obtained from the Public Area Recreation Visitors Study (PARVS). Results suggest that recreational spending may stimulate a considerable amount of economic activity in the state economies studied. Hence, future research into the economic development potential of outdoor recreation seems warranted.
Recent studies of drill-cores and outcrops have resulted in the discovery of previously unknown, taxonomically diverse, graptolite faunas in the late Middle (Mohawkian) and early Late Ordovician (Cincinnatian) strata in the Cincinnati region, the type area of the Cincinnatian Series. These faunas contain several zonal indices and other biostratigraphically important species that are used for close correlation with the standard graptolite zone succession in New York and Quebec. The new data show that the base of the Cincinnatian Series in its type area is near the middle of the Climacograptus (Diplacanthograptus) spiniferus Zone. Significantly, about a dozen Cincinnati region graptolite species are shared with apparently coeval strata in the standard Australian graptolite zone succession in Victoria, and this key faunal evidence indicates that the base of the typical Cincinnatian corresponds to a level near the middle of the Climacograptus (Climacograptus) baragwanathi Zone (Ea2) of the Eastonian Stage. This represents a considerable revision of some recently published correlations of the basal Cincinnatian in terms of the Australian graptolite zone succession.
A need exists for empirical criteria by which the behaviour of hypersonic boundary layers flowing in adverse pressure gradients can be predicted, thereby placing the design of high Mach number intake/diffuser systems on a rational basis.
The main results of the inviscid flow performance analysis of a two-dimensional “isentropic ramp” intake diffusing to supersonic Mach numbers over the free stream Mach number range 6 to 10 are presented. Limitations on the degree of diffusion, and hence geometry, have been deduced in terms of the combustion length requirements of an idealised hydrogen/air combustion process with com-bustor inlet conditions given by the intake. The analysis can be considered as a first order approximation defining the ranges of continuous pressure gradients and oblique shock wave strengths relevant to the experimental investigation of boundary layer flow in the mixed adverse pressure gradients associated with hypersonic intakes.
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