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There is a long history of exploitation of the South American river turtle Podocnemis expansa. Conservation efforts for this species started in the 1960s but best practices were not established, and population trends and the number of nesting females protected remained unknown. In 2014 we formed a working group to discuss conservation strategies and to compile population data across the species’ range. We analysed the spatial pattern of its abundance in relation to human and natural factors using multiple regression analyses. We found that > 85 conservation programmes are protecting 147,000 nesting females, primarily in Brazil. The top six sites harbour > 100,000 females and should be prioritized for conservation action. Abundance declines with latitude and we found no evidence of human pressure on current turtle abundance patterns. It is presently not possible to estimate the global population trend because the species is not monitored continuously across the Amazon basin. The number of females is increasing at some localities and decreasing at others. However, the current size of the protected population is well below the historical population size estimated from past levels of human consumption, which demonstrates the need for concerted global conservation action. The data and management recommendations compiled here provide the basis for a regional monitoring programme among South American countries.
Exposure to threat increases the risk for internalizing problems in adolescence. Deficits in integrating bodily cues into representations of emotion are thought to contribute to internalizing problems. Given the role of the medial prefrontal cortex in regulating bodily responses and integrating them into representations of emotional states, coordination between activity in the medial prefrontal cortex and autonomic nervous system responses may be influenced by past threat exposure with consequences for the emergence of internalizing problems. A sample of 179 Mexican-origin adolescents (88 female) reported on neighborhood and school crime, peer victimization, and discrimination when they were 10–16 years old. At age 17, participants underwent a functional neuroimaging scan during which they viewed pictures of emotional faces while respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA) and skin conductance responses were measured. Adolescents also reported symptoms of internalizing problems. Greater exposure to threats across adolescence was associated with more internalizing problems. Threat exposure was also associated with stronger negative coupling between the ventromedial prefrontal cortex and RSA. Stronger negative ventromedial prefrontal cortex–RSA coupling was associated with fewer internalizing problems. These results suggest the degree of coordinated activity between the brain and parasympathetic nervous system is both enhanced by threat experiences and decreased in adolescents with more internalizing problems.
We report four cases of Taenia saginata taeniasis in different urban communities of Aragua state, Venezuela. After subsequent treatment with praziquantel and a saline purge, adult tapeworms were collected from all four patients and demonstrated to be T. saginata by morphological and molecular characterization. The finding of T. saginata in four distinct and separate urban municipalities of the Aragua state indicates the pertinence of rigorous meat inspection, and the importance of establishing parasite prevalence in human and bovine Venezuelan populations.
Hypothyroidism is a common complication when radiotherapy is part of the treatment for head and neck tumours. This study aimed to show the incidence of hypothyroidism and possible risk factors in these patients.
Factors related to the population, tumour, treatment and occurrence of hypothyroidism were analysed in 241 patients diagnosed with head and neck carcinoma.
Approximately 53 per cent of patients were diagnosed with radiation-induced hypothyroidism. Its occurrence was related to: tumour location, laryngeal surgery type, neck dissection type, post-operative complications, cervical radiotherapy and radiotherapy unit type (linear particle accelerator or telecobalt therapy technology).
Control of thyroid function should be standardised for several years after treatment, particularly in patients with risk factors, such as those treated with telecobalt therapy, those with post-operative complications and for whom the thyroid parenchyma is included in the irradiated area (laryngeal or pharyngeal location and bilateral cervical radiation).
This paper presents limits for stability of projection type schemes when using high order pressure-velocity pairs of same degree. Two high order h/p variational methods encompassing continuous and discontinuous Galerkin formulations are used to explain previously observed lower limits on the time step for projection type schemes to be stable , when h- or p-refinement strategies are considered. In addition, the analysis included in this work shows that these stability limits do not depend only on the time step but on the product of the latter and the kinematic viscosity, which is of particular importance in the study of high Reynolds number flows. We show that high order methods prove advantageous in stabilising the simulations when small time steps and low kinematic viscosities are used.
Drawing upon this analysis, we demonstrate how the effects of this instability can be reduced in the discontinuous scheme by introducing a stabilisation term into the global system. Finally, we show that these lower limits are compatible with Courant-Friedrichs-Lewy (CFL) type restrictions, given that a sufficiently high polynomial order or a mall enough mesh spacing is selected.
Schistosomiasis is a disease caused by parasitic flatworms of the genus Schistosoma, whose diagnosis has limitations, such as the low sensitivity and specificity of parasitological and immunological methods, respectively. In the present study an alternative molecular technique requiring previous standardization was carried out using the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for the amplification of a 121-bp highly repetitive sequence for Schistosoma mansoni. DNA was extracted from eggs of S. mansoni by salting out. Different conditions were standardized for the PCR technique, including the concentration of reagents and the DNA template, annealing temperature and number of cycles, followed by the determination of the analytical sensitivity and specificity of the technique. Furthermore, the standardized PCR technique was employed in DNA extracted, using Chelex®100, from samples of sera of patients with an immunodiagnosis of schistosomiasis. The optimal conditions for the PCR were 2.5 mm MgCl2, 150 mm deoxynucleoside triphosphates (dNTPs), 0.4 μm primers, 0.75 U DNA polymerase, using 35 cycles and an annealing temperature of 63°C. The analytical sensitivity of the PCR was 10 attograms of DNA and the specificity was 100%. The DNA sequence was successfully detected in the sera of two patients, demonstrating schistosomiasis transmission, although low, in the community studied. The standardized PCR technique, using smaller amounts of reagents than in the original protocol, is highly sensitive and specific for the detection of DNA from S. mansoni and could be an important tool for diagnosis in areas of low endemicity.
We have observed 12 interacting galaxies using the Fabry-Perot interferometer GHαFaS (Galaxy Hα Fabry-Perot system) on the 4.2m William Herschel Telescope (La Palma). We have extracted the physical properties (sizes, Hα luminosity and velocity dispersion) of 236 HII regions for the full sample of interacting galaxies. We have derived the physical properties of 664 HII regions for a sample of 28 isolated galaxies observed with the same instrument in order to compare both populations of HII regions, finding that there are brighter and denser star forming regions in the interacting galaxies compared with the isolated galaxies sample.
Optical properties of ZnO-CdTe electrochemically prepared on a core-shell nanostructure (NS) were studied. Numerical simulations based on effective medium approximation give higher absorption than ZnO-CdS samples and a sensitive dependence on CdTe content. The absorption edges for deep black samples found by transmittance (T(λ)) and diffuse reflectance (Rdiff(λ)) measurements were at 1.33eV and 1.55eV, respectively. A split-off band edge was also found by Rdiff(λ) at ∼2.5eV. The red shift observed in T(λ), previously observed in ZnO-CdS, and may confirm the enhancement of sub-bandgap absorption due to the NS nature of samples.
Using the solutions of the gap equations of the magnetic-color-flavor-locked (MCFL) phase of paired quark matter in a magnetic field, and taking into consideration the separation between the longitudinal and transverse pressures due to the field-induced breaking of the spatial rotational symmetry, the equation of state (EoS) of the MCFL phase is self-consistently determined. Implications for stellar models of magnetized (self-bound) strange stars and hybrid (MCFL core) stars are discussed.
We have used the package CLOUDPROPS (Rosolowsky & Leroy 2008) in order to identify clouds, which are contained in data cubes of molecular/Hα line emission, and extract their properties. The molecular data cube is taken from the ALMA public archive and the ionized hydrogen data cube was obtained with the Fabry-Perot interferometer, GHαFaS, on the 4.2 m WHT in La Palma. In our study of the overlap region of the Antennae galaxies we have identified two populations of molecular clouds, above and below log M/M⊙ = 6.75 (in agreement with Wei et al. 2012 who find the break in mass at log M/M⊙ = 6.5) and two different populations of ionized gas clouds; the break in the luminosity occurs near log L = 37.6 (see Fig. 1). We have measured the masses, velocity dispersions and luminosities of the clouds, and derived relation between them for each population. Population II clouds (both molecular and ionized) tend to be located in the most luminous regions, while population I clouds can be found in the outskirts. This work will be published in Font et al. (2013).
We present a study of the morphology, kinematics and star formation of a sample of 27 isolated spiral galaxies in the Spitzer Survey of Stellar Structure in Galaxies (S4G), on the basis of Hα Fabry-Perot (FP) data from the GHαFaS instrument at the William Herschel Telescope (WHT) in La Palma, complemented with images at 3.6 micron from the Spitzer Space Telescope, and with images in the R-band and in Hα taken with the ACAM instrument mounted on the WHT. With the FP data we can investigate the gas kinematics in terms of velocity maps and position-velocity diagrams, keys to constrain the secular evolution processes. We can also analyse the morphology and compute the star formation rate (SFR) with the ancillary data.
We present a study of the kinematics of a sample of isolated spiral galaxies in the Spitzer Survey of Stellar Structure in Galaxies (S4G). We use Hα Fabry-Perot data from the GHαFaS instrument at the William Herschel Telescope (WHT) in La Palma, complemented with images at 3.6 microns, in the R band and in the Hα filter. The resulting data cubes and velocity field maps allow a complete study of the kinematics of a galaxy, including in-depth investigations of the rotation curve, velocity moment maps, velocity residual maps, gradient maps and position-velocity (PV) diagrams. We find clear evidence of the secular evolution processes going on in these galaxies, such as asymmetries in the velocity field in the bar zone, and non-circular motions, probably in response to the potential of the structural components of the galaxies, or to past or present interactions.
Before-after prospective surveillance study to assess the efficacy of the International Nosocomial Infection Control Consortium (INICC) multidimensional infection control program to reduce the rate of occurrence of ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP).
Neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) of INICC member hospitals from 15 cities in the following 10 developing countries: Argentina, Colombia, El Salvador, India, Mexico, Morocco, Peru, Philippines, Tunisia, and Turkey.
VAP rates were determined during a first period of active surveillance without the implementation of the multidimensional approach (phase 1) to be then compared with VAP rates after implementation of the INICC multidimensional infection control program (phase 2), which included the following practices: a bundle of infection control interventions, education, outcome surveillance, process surveillance, feedback on VAP rates, and performance feedback on infection control practices. This study was conducted by infection control professionals who applied National Health Safety Network (NHSN) definitions for healthcare-associated infections and INICC surveillance methodology.
During phase 1, we recorded 3,153 mechanical ventilation (MV)–days, and during phase 2, after the implementation of the bundle of interventions, we recorded 15,981 MV-days. The VAP rate was 17.8 cases per 1,000 MV-days during phase 1 and 12.0 cases per 1,000 MV-days during phase 2 (relative risk, 0.67 [95% confidence interval, 0.50–0.91]; P = .001 ), indicating a 33% reduction in VAP rate.
Our results demonstrate that an implementation of the INICC multidimensional infection control program was associated with a significant reduction in VAP rate in NICUs in developing countries.
Micromegas detectors, thanks to their good spatial and temporal discrimination capabilities, are good candidates for rare event search experiments. Recent X-ray background levels achieved by these detectors in the CAST experiment have motivated further studies in the nature of the background levels measured. In particular, different shielding configurations have been tested at the Canfranc Underground Laboratory, using a microbulk type detector which was previously running at the CAST experiment. The first results underground show that this technology, which is made of low radiative materials, is able to reach background levels down to 2 × 10-7 keV-1 s-1 cm-2 with a proper shielding. Moreover, the experimental background measurements are complemented with Geant4 simulations which allow to understand the origin of the background, and to optimize future shielding set-ups.
The T-REX project aims at developing novel readout techniques for Time Projection Chambers in experiments searching for rare events. The enhanced performance of the latest Micromegas readouts in issues like energy resolution, gain stability, homogeneity, material budget, combined with low background techniques, is opening new windows of opportunity for their application in this field. Here we review the latest results regarding the use and prospects of Micromegas readouts in axion physics (CAST and the future helioscope), as well as the R&D carried out within NEXT, to search for the neutrinoless double-beta decay.
The aim of the MIMAC project is to detect non-baryonic Dark Matter with a directional TPC. The recent Micromegas efforts towards building a large size detector will be described, in particular the characterization measurements of a prototype detector of 10 × 10 cm2 with a 2 dimensional readout plane. Track reconstruction with alpha particles will be shown.
Directional detection of non-baryonic Dark Matter is a promising search strategy for discriminating WIMP events from background ones. This strategy requires both a measurement of the recoil energy down to a few keV and 3D reconstruction of tracks down to a few mm. The MIMAC project, based on a micro-TPC matrix, filled with CF4 and CHF3 is being developed. The first results of a chamber prototype of this matrix, on low energy nuclear recoils (1H and 19F) obtained with mono-energetic neutron fields are presented. The discovery potential of this search strategy is illustrated by a realistic case accessible to MIMAC.
GG Car is a peculiar B type star with emission lines classified as a B[e] supergiant star. In this work we present a spectral analysis of this system based on spectra obtained at Casleo. We fit the spectral energy distribution adopting a model for the gas and dust circumstellar components and thus we obtain the physical parameters of the star and its environment.
A mechanistic lactation model, based on a theory of mammary cell proliferation and cell death, was studied and compared to the equation of Wood (1967). Lactation curves of British Holstein Friesian cows (176 curves), Spanish Churra sheep (40 curves) and Spanish Murciano–Granadina goats (30 curves) were used for model evaluation. Both models were fitted in their original form using non-linear least squares estimation. The parameters were compared among species and among parity groups within species.
In general, both models provided highly significant fits to lactation data and described the data accurately. The mechanistic model performed well against Wood's 1967 equation (hereafter referred to as Wood's equation), resulting in smaller residual mean square values in more than two-thirds of the datasets investigated, and producing parameter estimates that allowed appropriate comparisons and noticeable trends attributed to shape. Using Akaike or Bayesian information criteria, goodness-of-fit with the mechanistic model was superior to that with Wood's equation for the cow lactation curves, with no significant differences between models when fitted to goat or sheep lactation curves. The rate parameters of the mechanistic model, representing specific proliferation rate of mammary secretory cells at parturition, decay associated with reduction in cell proliferation capacity with time and specific death rate of mammary secretory cells, were smaller for primiparous than for multiparous cows. Greater lactation persistency of cows compared to goats and sheep, and decrease in persistency with parity, were shown to be represented by different values of the specific secretory cell death rate parameter in the mechanistic model. The plausible biological interpretation and fitting properties of the mechanistic model enable it to be used in complex models of whole-cow digestion and metabolism and as a tool in selection programmes and by dairy producers for management decisions.