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Small-angle X-ray scattering measurements were made on samples of CaO—MgO—SiO2 as CaO-MgO-SiO2 glass in which met astable amorphous phase separation had been induced by heat treatment. Glass rods drawn from a melt of composition 30.5% CaO, 8.0% MgO, 61.5% SiO2 (by weight) at 1400°C were heat treated for 1, 2, 10, and 15hr at 825°C. X-ray scattering intensities of heat-treated and non-heat-treated samples were measured using an apparatus based on Kratky collimation geometry and equipped with a pulse height analyzer. Particle sizes were calculated from the radii of gyration which were determined from plots of log intensity vs, θ2, according to the method of Guinier. The data show a growth with time of the dispersed spheres from 350 to 1880 Å in diameter and correspond to the growth rate for diffusion-controlled growth of a sphere. Electron micrographs of identical samples prepared concurrently are presented. Inhomogeneity sizes obtained by the two methods are in very good agreement. Results obtained using the Kratky system in conjunction with a pulse height analyzer are compared with those obtained when a slit collimation system and balanced filter monochronmtization were used to study the same sample.
We develop a model for predicting the flow resulting from the relaxation of pre-strained, fluid-filled, elastic network structures. This model may be useful for understanding relaxation processes in various systems, e.g. deformable microfluidic systems or by-products from hydraulic fracturing operations. The analysis is aimed at elucidating features that may provide insight on the rate of fluid drainage from fracturing operations. The model structure is a bifurcating network made of fractures with uniform length and elastic modulus, which allows for general self-similar branching and variation in fracture length and rigidity between fractures along the flow path. A late-time
power law is attained and the physical behaviour can be classified into four distinct regimes that describe the late-time dynamics based on the location of the bulk of the fluid volume (which shifts away from the outlet as branching is increased) and pressure drop (which shifts away from the outlet as rigidity is increased upstream) along the network. We develop asymptotic solutions for each of the regimes, predicting the late-time flux and evolution of the pressure distribution. The effects of the various parameters on the outlet flux and the network’s drainage efficiency are investigated and show that added branching and a decrease in rigidity upstream tend to increase drainage time.
The role that vitamin D plays in pulmonary function remains uncertain. Epidemiological studies reported mixed findings for serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D)–pulmonary function association. We conducted the largest cross-sectional meta-analysis of the 25(OH)D–pulmonary function association to date, based on nine European ancestry (EA) cohorts (n 22 838) and five African ancestry (AA) cohorts (n 4290) in the Cohorts for Heart and Aging Research in Genomic Epidemiology Consortium. Data were analysed using linear models by cohort and ancestry. Effect modification by smoking status (current/former/never) was tested. Results were combined using fixed-effects meta-analysis. Mean serum 25(OH)D was 68 (sd 29) nmol/l for EA and 49 (sd 21) nmol/l for AA. For each 1 nmol/l higher 25(OH)D, forced expiratory volume in the 1st second (FEV1) was higher by 1·1 ml in EA (95 % CI 0·9, 1·3; P<0·0001) and 1·8 ml (95 % CI 1·1, 2·5; P<0·0001) in AA (Prace difference=0·06), and forced vital capacity (FVC) was higher by 1·3 ml in EA (95 % CI 1·0, 1·6; P<0·0001) and 1·5 ml (95 % CI 0·8, 2·3; P=0·0001) in AA (Prace difference=0·56). Among EA, the 25(OH)D–FVC association was stronger in smokers: per 1 nmol/l higher 25(OH)D, FVC was higher by 1·7 ml (95 % CI 1·1, 2·3) for current smokers and 1·7 ml (95 % CI 1·2, 2·1) for former smokers, compared with 0·8 ml (95 % CI 0·4, 1·2) for never smokers. In summary, the 25(OH)D associations with FEV1 and FVC were positive in both ancestries. In EA, a stronger association was observed for smokers compared with never smokers, which supports the importance of vitamin D in vulnerable populations.
The spoon-billed sandpiper Calidris pygmaea, a migratory Arctic-breeding shorebird, is one of the rarest birds and its population has declined since the 1970s. We surveyed its most important known wintering area in the Upper Gulf of Mottama in Myanmar to estimate recent (2009–2016) changes in its numbers there. The total number of small shorebirds present in the Upper Gulf was counted and the proportion of them that were spoon-billed sandpipers was estimated from sample scans. These two quantities were multiplied together to give the estimated number of spoon-billed sandpipers in each of 4 years. Total numbers of combined small shorebird species tripled from 21,000 to 63,000 between 2009 and 2016, coincident with efforts to reduce hunting pressure on waterbirds. However, the proportion of small shorebirds that were spoon-billed sandpipers declined and their estimated absolute numbers fell by about half, from 244 to 112 individuals. It is probable that loss of intertidal habitat and shorebird hunting elsewhere on the migration route of the spoon-billed sandpipers wintering at Mottama is causing a continued decline, although this is occurring at a less rapid rate than that recorded from Arctic Russia before 2010. The number of spoon-billed sandpipers wintering on the Upper Gulf of Mottama remains the highest single-site total for this species from any known wintering site. Preventing resurgence of illegal shorebird hunting and ensuring long-term protection of the intertidal feeding habitats and roost sites in the Gulf are high priorities if extinction of this species is to be averted.
In this chapter, we summarize our current knowledge of the mineralogy, petrography, oxygen-isotope compositions, and trace element abundances of precursors of chondrules and igneous Ca,Al-rich inclusions (CAIs), which provide important constraints on the mechanisms of transient heating events in the protoplanetary disk. We infer that porphyritic chondrules, the dominant textural type of chondrules in most chondrite groups, largely formed by incomplete melting of isotopically diverse solid precursors, including refractory inclusions (CAIs and amoeboid olivine aggregates (AOAs)), fragments of chondrules from earlier generations, and fine-grained matrix-like material during highly-localized transient heating events in dust-rich disk regions characterized by 16O-poor average compositions of dust (Δ17O ~ ‒5‰ to +3‰). These observations preclude formation of the majority of porphyritic chondrules by splashing of differentiated planetesimals; instead, they are consistent with melting of dustballs during localized transient heating events, such as bow shocks and magnetized turbulence in the protoplanetary disk, and, possibly, by collisions between chondritic planetesimals. Like porphyritic chondrules, igneous CAIs formed by incomplete melting of isotopically diverse solid precursors during localized transient heating events. These precursors, however, consisted exclusively of refractory inclusions, and the melting occurred in an 16O-rich gas (Δ17O ~ ‒24‰) of approximately solar composition, most likely near the protosun. The U-corrected Pb–Pb absolute and Al–Mg relative chronologies of igneous CAIs in CV chondrites indicate that these melting events started contemporaneously with condensation of CAI precursors (4567.3 ± 0.16 Ma) and lasted up to 0.3 Ma, providing evidence for the earliest transient heating events capable of melting refractory dustballs in the innermost part of the disk. There is no evidence that chondrules were among the precursors of igneous CAIs, which is consistent with an age gap between CAIs and chondrules. In contrast to typical (non–metal-rich) chondrites, the CB metal-rich carbonaceous chondrites contain exclusively magnesian nonporphyritic chondrules formed during a single-stage event ~5 Ma after CV CAIs, most likely in an impact-generated gas–melt plume. Bulk chemical compositions of CB chondrules and equilibrium thermodynamic calculations suggest that at least one of the colliding bodies was differentiated. The uniformly 16O-depleted igneous CAIs in CB chondrites most likely formed by complete melting of preexisting refractory inclusions that was accompanied by gas–melt interaction in the plume. CH metal-rich carbonaceous chondrites represent a mixture of the CB-like materials (magnesian skeletal olivine and cryptocrystalline chondrules and uniformly 16O-depleted igneous CAIs) formed in an impact plume and the typical chondritic materials (magnesian, ferroan, and Al-rich porphyritic chondrules, uniformly 16O-rich CAIs, and chondritic lithic clasts) that appear to have largely predated the impact plume event. We conclude that there are multiple mechanisms of transient heating events that operated in the protoplanetary disk during its entire lifetime and resulted in formation of chondrules and igneous CAIs.
Background: Despite the global impact of bipolar disorder (BD), treatment success is limited. Challenges include syndromal and subsyndromal mood instability, comorbid anxiety, and uncertainty around mechanisms to target. The Oxford Mood Action Psychology Programme (OxMAPP) offered a novel approach within a cognitive behavioural framework, via mental imagery-focused cognitive therapy (ImCT). Aims: This clinical audit evaluated referral rates, clinical outcomes and patient satisfaction with the OxMAPP service. Method: Eleven outpatients with BD received ImCT in addition to standard psychiatric care. Mood data were collected weekly from 6 months pre-treatment to 6 months post-treatment via routine mood monitoring. Anxiety was measured weekly from start of treatment until 1 month post-treatment. Patient feedback was provided via questionnaire. Results: Referral and treatment uptake rates indicated acceptability to referrers and patients. From pre- to post-treatment, there was (i) a significant reduction in the duration of depressive episode relapses, and (ii) a non-significant trend towards a reduction in the number of episodes, with small to medium effect size. There was a large effect size for the reduction in weekly anxiety symptoms from assessment to 1 month follow-up. Patient feedback indicated high levels of satisfaction with ImCT, and underscored the importance of the mental imagery focus. Conclusions: This clinical audit provides preliminary evidence that ImCT can help improve depressive and anxiety symptoms in BD as part of integrated clinical care, with high patient satisfaction and acceptability. Formal assessment designs are needed to further test the feasibility and efficacy of the new ImCT treatment on anxiety and mood instability.
Exotic annual grasses such as medusahead [Taeniatherum caput-medusae (L.) Nevski] and downy brome (Bromus tectorum L.) dominate millions of hectares of grasslands in the western United States. Applying picloram, aminopyralid, and other growth regulator herbicides at late growth stages reduces seed production of most exotic annual grasses. In this study, we applied aminopyralid to T. caput-medusae to determine how reducing seed production in the current growing season influenced cover in the subsequent growing season. At eight annual grassland sites, we applied aminopyralid at 55, 123, and 245 g ae ha−1 in spring just before T. caput-medusae heading. The two higher rates were also applied pre-emergence (PRE) in fall to allow comparisons with this previously tested timing. When applied in spring during the roughly 10-d period between the flag leaf and inflorescence first becoming visible, just 55 g ae ha−1 of aminopyralid greatly limited seed production and subsequently reduced T. caput-medusae cover to nearly zero. Fall aminopyralid applications were less effective against T. caput-medusae, even at a rate of 245 g ae ha−1. The growing season of application, fall treatments, but not spring treatments, sometimes reduced cover of desirable winter annual forage grasses. The growing season after application, both spring and fall treatments tended to increase forage grasses, though spring treatments generally caused larger increases. Compared with other herbicide treatment options, preheading aminopyralid treatments are a relatively inexpensive, effective approach for controlling T. caput-medusae and increasing forage production.
Hydraulic fracturing for production of oil and gas from shale formations releases fluid waste, by-products that must be managed carefully to avoid significant harm to human health and the environment. These fluids are presumed to result from a variety of fracture relaxation processes, and are commonly referred to as ‘flowback’ and ‘produced water’, depending primarily on the time scale of their appearance. Here, a model is presented for investigating the dynamics of backflows caused by the elastic relaxation of a pre-strained medium, namely a single fracture and two model fracture network systems: a single bifurcated channel and its generalization for
bifurcated fracture generations. Early- and late-time asymptotic solutions are obtained for the model problems and agree well with numerical solutions. In the late-time period, the fracture apertures and backflow rates exhibit a time dependence of
, respectively. In addition, the pressure distributions collapse to universal curves when scaled by the maximum pressure in the system, which we calculate as a function of
. The pressure gradient along the network is steepest near the outlet while the bulk of the network serves as a ‘reservoir’. Fracture networks with larger
are less efficient at evicting fluids, manifested through a longer time required for a given fractional reduction of the initial volume. The developed framework may be useful for informing engineering design and environmental regulations.
FFQ, food diaries and 24 h recall methods represent the most commonly used dietary assessment tools in human studies on nutrition and health, but food intake biomarkers are assumed to provide a more objective reflection of intake. Unfortunately, very few of these biomarkers are sufficiently validated. This review provides an overview of food intake biomarker research and highlights present research efforts of the Joint Programming Initiative ‘A Healthy Diet for a Healthy Life’ (JPI-HDHL) Food Biomarkers Alliance (FoodBAll). In order to identify novel food intake biomarkers, the focus is on new food metabolomics techniques that allow the quantification of up to thousands of metabolites simultaneously, which may be applied in intervention and observational studies. As biomarkers are often influenced by various other factors than the food under investigation, FoodBAll developed a food intake biomarker quality and validity score aiming to assist the systematic evaluation of novel biomarkers. Moreover, to evaluate the applicability of nutritional biomarkers, studies are presently also focusing on associations between food intake biomarkers and diet-related disease risk. In order to be successful in these metabolomics studies, knowledge about available electronic metabolomics resources is necessary and further developments of these resources are essential. Ultimately, present efforts in this research area aim to advance quality control of traditional dietary assessment methods, advance compliance evaluation in nutritional intervention studies, and increase the significance of observational studies by investigating associations between nutrition and health.
Some 25% of women and 8% of men in the United States have experienced childhood sexual abuse (CSA) before the age of 18. For these individuals, healthcare visits and interactions can be retraumatizing due to perceived similarities to past abuse (e.g., pain, undressing, lack of control). However, no prior studies have provided formal qualitative analyses regarding CSA survivors' reactions to cancer treatment. Therefore, our study's objective was to identify key themes pertaining to CSA survivors' cancer treatment experiences.
Male and female members of the Amazon Mechanical Turk (N = 159, mean age = 44.27 years, SD = 10.02) participated in an anonymous online survey study. The inclusion criteria included reporting: history of CSA; a diagnosis of colorectal, gynecological, breast, or skin cancer; and experience of triggers and/or difficulties during cancer treatment. Participants' responses to open-ended questions were analyzed using inductive thematic analysis.
We identified two primary themes describing CSA survivors' experiences: Theme 1: treatment-related triggers (key subthemes: procedure-related, provider-related, and emotional triggers); and Theme 2: questioning the meaning of cumulative trauma (e.g., “Why me again?”).
Significance of results:
For CSA survivors, cancer and its treatment can trigger thoughts and emotions associated with the original abuse as well as negative evaluations of themselves, the world, and their future. Our findings are consistent with past research on CSA survivors' experiences in non-cancer healthcare settings and add to the literature by highlighting their struggles during cancer treatment. The present results can inform further research on trauma survivors' reactions to cancer treatment and give cancer care providers the context they need to understand and sensitively serve a substantial yet often overlooked patient group.
The Yellow Sea region is of high global importance for waterbird populations, but recent systematic bird count data enabling identification of the most important sites are relatively sparse for some areas. Surveys of waterbirds at three sites on the coast of southern Jiangsu Province, China, in 2014 and 2015 produced peak counts of international importance for 24 species, including seven globally threatened and six Near Threatened species. The area is of particular global importance for the ‘Critically Endangered’ Spoon-billed Sandpiper Calidris pygmaea (peak count across all three study sites: 62 in spring  and 225 in autumn  and ‘Endangered’ Spotted Greenshank Tringa guttifer (peak count across all three study sites: 210 in spring  and 1,110 in autumn ). The southern Jiangsu coast is therefore currently the most important migratory stopover area in the world, in both spring and autumn, for both species. Several serious and acute threats to waterbirds were recorded at these study sites. Paramount is the threat of large-scale land claim which would completely destroy intertidal mudflats of critical importance to waterbirds. Degradation of intertidal mudflat habitats through the spread of invasive Spartina, and mortality of waterbirds by entrapment in nets or deliberate poisoning are also real and present serious threats here. Collisions with, and displacement by, wind turbines and other structures, and industrial chemical pollution may represent additional potential threats. We recommend the rapid establishment of effective protected areas for waterbirds in the study area, maintaining large areas of open intertidal mudflat, and the urgent removal of all serious threats currently faced by waterbirds here.
Toxoplasma gondii, a zoonotic parasite of global importance, infects all endothermic vertebrates, with extensive health implications. The prevalence of this parasite is seldom monitored in wildlife. Here, a semi-aquatic species, the Eurasian otter (Lutra lutra) was used as a model to assess the potential effect of climate, land cover and biotic factors on T. gondii seroprevalence in British wildlife. The Sabin–Feldman cytoplasm-modifying dye test identified T. gondii antibodies in 25·5% of blood samples from otters found dead, mainly as road kill, in England and Wales, between 2004 and 2010. Otters in the east of England were more likely to be infected with T. gondii than those in western regions. Land cover and temperature are key determinants of T. gondii infection risk, with more infection in arable areas and lower infection where temperatures are higher. The probability of T. gondii infection increased with host age, reflecting cumulative exposure with time, but there was no association between T. gondii seroprevalence and cause of host death.
The spoon-billed sandpiper Calidris pygmaea is a Critically Endangered shorebird that breeds in the Russian arctic and winters in coastal and estuarine habitats in South-east Asia. We report the first formal estimate of its global population size, combining a mark–resighting estimate of the number of leg-flagged individuals alive in autumn 2014 with an estimate of the proportion of birds with flags from scan surveys conducted during the same period at a migration stop-over site on the Jiangsu coast of China. We estimate that the world breeding population of spoon-billed sandpipers in 2014 was 210–228 pairs and the post-breeding population of all age classes combined was 661–718 individuals. This and related methods have considerable potential for surveillance of the population size of other globally threatened species, especially widely dispersed long-distance migrants.
Over 300 cases of acute toxoplasmosis are confirmed by reference testing in England and Wales annually. We conducted a case-control study to identify risk factors for Toxoplasma gondii infection to inform prevention strategies. Twenty-eight cases and 27 seronegative controls participated. We compared their food history and environmental exposures using logistic regression to calculate odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals in a model controlling for age and sex. Univariable analysis showed that the odds of eating beef (OR 10·7, P < 0·001), poultry (OR 6·4, P = 0·01) or lamb/mutton (OR 4·9, P = 0·01) was higher for cases than controls. After adjustment for potential confounders a strong association between beef and infection remained (OR 5·6, P = 0·01). The small sample size was a significant limitation and larger studies are needed to fully investigate potential risk factors. The study findings emphasize the need to ensure food is thoroughly cooked and handled hygienically, especially for those in vulnerable groups.
The oasis of Samarkand in the Middle Zeravshan Valley (modern Uzbekistan) was a major political and economic center in ancient western Central Asia. The chronology of its irrigation system was, until now, only constrained by the quality and quantity of archaeological findings and several different hypotheses have been proposed for it. We use a new approach combining archaeological surveying, radiocarbon dating, sedimentary analysis, and the numerical modeling of a flood event to offer new evidence for, and quantitative dating of, the development of irrigation system on the southern flank of the Middle Zeravshan Valley. We analyzed 13 bones and charcoals from 3 archaeological sites and obtained new 14C ages from Afrasiab (ancient Samarkand), a dwelling damaged by flooding in the 2nd century AD (site code: SAM-174) and the fortress of Kafir Kala. We established the origin of sedimentary deposits at the sites to infer the presence of the 2 most important canals of the southern flank: the Dargom and the Yanghiaryk. Finally, we show with a numerical model of overland flow that a natural flood was unlikely to have produced the damage observed at SAM-174. The combined results of the study indicate that the canals south of Samarkand existed, and were mainly developed, in the 2nd century AD and were not connected to the main feeding canal of Afrasiab at that time.
The study of spatial patterns in biotic compositional variability in deep time is key to understanding the macroecological response of species assemblages to global change. Globally warm climatic phases are marked by the expansion of megathermal climates into currently extra-tropical areas. However, there is currently little information on whether vegetation in these “paratropical” regions resembled spatially modern tropical or extra-tropical biomes. In this paper we explore spatial heterogeneity in extra-tropical megathermal vegetation, using sporomorph (pollen and spore) data from the late Paleocene Calvert Bluff and Tuscahoma Formations of the formerly paratropical U.S. Gulf Coast (Texas, Mississippi, and Alabama). The data set comprises 139 sporomorph taxa recorded from 56 samples. Additive diversity partitioning, nonmetric multidimensional scaling, and cluster analysis show compositional heterogeneity both spatially and lithologically within the U.S. Gulf Coastal Plain (GCP) microflora. We then use sporomorph data from Holocene lake cores to compare spatial patterns in the late Paleocene GCP with modern tropical and extra-tropical biomes. Distance decay analysis of the Holocene data reveals a higher rate of spatial turnover in tropical versus extra-tropical vegetation types, consistent with a latitudinal gradient in floral compositional heterogeneity. The specific combination of rate and scale dependency of distance decay in the Holocene assemblages prevented us from associating the late Paleocene GCP with any particular modern biome. Our results demonstrate the importance of spatial scale, taphonomy, and lithology in determining patterns of spatial heterogeneity, and show the potential of the fossil sporomorph record for studying spatial patterns and processes in deep time.
Ediacaran fossils at Mistaken Point, southeastern Newfoundland (terminal Neoproterozoic; 565–575 Ma) represent the oldest known animal communities. In contrast to most Phanerozoic fossil assemblages, in which postmortem transportation, bioturbation, and the accumulation of hardparts obscure community relationships, all fossils in the Mistaken Point assemblages were sessile, soft-bodied organisms that show no evidence of mobility in life or transportation after death. Mistaken Point assemblages are spectacularly preserved on large bedding planes as in situ census populations of hundreds to thousands of fossils, recording the living soft-bodied benthic community at the moment it was smothered by volcanic ash. This unique preservation style allows ecological tests routinely conducted in modern communities (e.g., species richness, abundance, “biomass,” diversity, and evenness, as well as statistical tests of nearest-neighbor interactions) to be applied to the fossil communities. Observed patterns of community variability are consistent with the theory that Mistaken Point fossil surfaces are “snapshots” recording different stages of ecological succession, progressing from communities of low-level feeders (e.g., pectinates and spindles) to frond-dominated communities with complex tiering and spatial structure. The presence of diverse slope communities at Mistaken Point suggests that the deep sea was colonized rapidly during the evolution of complex organisms. Species richness, abundance, and diversity values, as well as levels of intraspecific interaction, all fall within the typical range observed in modern slope communities. These structural similarities imply that ecological processes present in Ediacaran communities at Mistaken Point were strikingly similar to the processes that operate in modern deep-sea animal communities.
Little is known about the Endangered Grevy's zebra Equus grevyi in far northern Kenya, where the species exists in small, isolated populations at the periphery of its range. Understanding the threats facing this species is a prerequisite for effective conservation planning but its rarity makes obtaining accurate information challenging. We set out to establish the current status of, and attitudes towards, Grevy's zebra in northern Kenya using local knowledge as the primary source of information. Pastoralists perceived Grevy's zebra to be in decline as a result of drought, lack of pasture and water, and hunting for consumptive use. There was also evidence of competition with livestock. Attitudes towards Grevy's zebra were predominantly positive, influenced by a range of perceived benefits of living alongside the species, and an absence of severe costs. Coupled with evidence of local conservation efforts in several locations, this is a positive starting point for community-based conservation.
Introduced plants threaten biodiversity and ecosystem processes, including carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) cycles, but little is known about the threshold at which such effects occur. We examined the impact of the invasive shrub Amur honeysuckle on soil organic carbon (SOC) and N density at study sites that varied in invasion history. In plots with and without honeysuckle, we measured honeysuckle abundance and size (basal area) and extracted soil cores. SOC and N densities were highest at the site with the longest invasion history and highest invasion intensity (i.e., greatest abundance and basal area of honeysuckle). Basal area of honeysuckle positively affected SOC and N densities likely because of increased litter decomposition and altered microbial communities. Because honeysuckle increases forest net primary productivity (NPP) and SOC, it also may play a role in C sequestration. Our results demonstrate the need to consider the influence of invasion history and intensity when evaluating the potential impact of invasive species.