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This work focuses on the functionalization of agave xylan-type hemicellulose functionalized with trimethoxysilylpropylmethacrylate and crosslinked with N-vinylcaprolactam to obtain a thermoresponsive material for potential applications in drug delivery. The hydrogels showed an interconnected and porous architecture with a lower critical solution temperature (LCST) close to poly(N-vinylcaprolactam)’s (PNVCL) LCST. These materials showed a good capacity to load ciprofloxacin (in the range 9.5 × 10−3–8.4 × 10−3 mg/mL), above the minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC ≤ 0.004 × 10−3–0.5 × 10−3 mg/mL) for gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria. The hybrid hydrogel inhibited the growth of Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa.
Bolometric arrays dominate in commercial terahertz and millimeter wave imagers. Bolometers tend to be slow and require an operating bias that increases the power budget. This paper presents first results on antenna-coupled thermo-electric junction detectors, a potentially attractive alternative to microbolometers. The nanoscale junctions have small thermal mass and can be much faster than bolometers. These junctions are heated by currents excited in spectrally-selective antennas and generate a voltage based on the Seebeck effect without any externally applied power. A pixel comprising a series array of antenna coupled junctions with peak response at 7.5 THz (40 μm wavelength) is designed and experimentally demonstrated. Responsivity of 5 MV/W, 500 Hz chopping frequency, and D* of 3.5 x 1010 Jones are demonstrated.
Despite the well-known relevance of twin studies in the medical and social sciences and the growing number of twin registries throughout the world, Latin America has not fully incorporated into the twin research community. We describe the first steps taken toward developing a twin registry in Mexico: its aim, organization, recruiting potential and main short-term objectives.
Diversified farms are operations that raise a variety of crops and/or multiple species of livestock, with the goal of utilising the products of one for the growth of the other, thus fostering a sustainable cycle. This type of farming reflects consumers' increasing demand for sustainably produced, naturally raised or pasture-raised animal products that are commonly produced on diversified farms. The specific objectives of this study were to characterise diversified small-scale farms (DSSF) in California, estimate the prevalence of Salmonella enterica and Campylobacter spp. in livestock and poultry, and evaluate the association between farm- and sample-level risk factors and the prevalence of Campylobacter spp. on DSSF in California using a multilevel logistic model. Most participating farms were organic and raised more than one animal species. Overall Salmonella prevalence was 1.19% (95% confidence interval (CI95) 0.6–2), and overall Campylobacter spp. prevalence was 10.8% (CI95 = 9–12.9). Significant risk factors associated with Campylobacter spp. were farm size (odds ratio (OR)10–50 acres: less than 10 acres = 6, CI95 = 2.11–29.8), ownership of swine (OR = 9.3, CI95 = 3.4–38.8) and season (ORSpring: Coastal summer = 3.5, CI95 = 1.1–10.9; ORWinter: Coastal summer = 3.23, CI95 = 1.4–7.4). As the number of DSSF continues to grow, evaluating risk factors and management practices that are unique to these operations will help identify risk mitigation strategies and develop outreach materials to improve the food safety of animal and vegetable products produced on DSSF.
In this work, the anodization of grade 2 titanium was performed using a HCl-based electrolyte in order to obtain Titania nanostructures. Different glycerol concentrations were added to the HCl electrolyte to study the effect it has on the shape and density of the nanostructures, additionally, anodization time and voltage was also varied. The anodized samples were observed by SEM microscopy and studied by Raman spectroscopy and X-ray diffraction. Raman spectroscopy and XRD showed the formation of the anatase phase of the TiO2. By SEM it was possible to observe several changes in the shape of the structures, by adding glycerol ball-like structures were visible, anodization time did not change the shape of the nanostructures. However, the voltage variation showed a clear control on the shape of the structures, forming nanotubes at higher voltages. It was concluded that a better control of the shape and density of the nanostructures is achieved by adding glycerol, however, in order to overcome the resistance that the electrolyte brings, higher voltages are required.
The hot rolling process reduces a slab passing through a series of work-rolls to obtain a strip of target thickness. Developing robust, efficient, and accurate simulation methods improve the process. This research aims to minimize the hot rolling time, bending of work rolls, thermal crown, and wear of work rolls, subject to some process constraints. The problem solution is by using a multi-objective genetic algorithm with four function objectives. The second generation of the Non-dominated Sorting Genetic Algorithm was chosen to solve the problem of this research. A probed constitutive model has been incorporated into the algorithm to compute the flow stress as a function of the chemical composition of steels. The algorithm implemented to minimize the four objectives proposed obtained the optimal schedule and associated makespan.
Pt/Ce1-xRuxO2 and Ir/Ce1-xRuxO2 catalysts were prepared through the sol-gel technique, under microwave heating. In a first step, the Ce1-xRuxO2 solid solutions were prepared. Subsequently, an incipient wet impregnation process was carried out to homogeneously achieve the dispersion, either of platinum or iridium nanoparticles. The Pt/Ce1-xRuxO2 and Ir/Ce1-xRuxO2 catalysts were characterized by means of SEM, XRD, XPS, TEM, and specific surface area measurements. Crystal size and shifting into the CeO2 structure were detected after ruthenium doping producing the Ce1-xRuxO2 solid-solutions. Trough XPS technique Pt and Ir nanoparticles were found evenly dispersed in a metallic state. Those features allow us to foresee that, in the near future, these materials could be used efficiently as catalysts for oxidation process.
Social cognition has been associated with functional outcome in patients with first episode psychosis (FEP). Social cognition has also been associated with neurocognition and cognitive reserve. Although cognitive reserve, neurocognitive functioning, social cognition, and functional outcome are related, the direction of their associations is not clear. Therefore, the main aim of this study was to analyze the influence of social cognition as a mediator between cognitive reserve and cognitive domains on functioning in FEP both at baseline and at 2 years.
The sample of the study was composed of 282 FEP patients followed up for 2 years. To analyze whether social cognition mediates the influence of cognitive reserve and cognitive domains on functioning, a path analysis was performed. The statistical significance of any mediation effects was evaluated by bootstrap analysis.
At baseline, as neither cognitive reserve nor the cognitive domains studied were related to functioning, the conditions for mediation were not satisfied. Nevertheless, at 2 years of follow-up, social cognition acted as a mediator between cognitive reserve and functioning. Likewise, social cognition was a mediator between verbal memory and functional outcome. The results of the bootstrap analysis confirmed these significant mediations (95% bootstrapped CI (−10.215 to −0.337) and (−4.731 to −0.605) respectively).
Cognitive reserve and neurocognition are related to functioning, and social cognition mediates in this relationship.
Kinetoplastid parasites are responsible for serious diseases in humans and livestock such as Chagas disease and sleeping sickness (caused by Trypanosoma cruzi and Trypanosoma brucei, respectively), and the different forms of cutaneous, mucocutaneous and visceral leishmaniasis (produced by Leishmania spp). The limited number of antiparasitic drugs available together with the emergence of resistance underscores the need for new therapeutic agents with novel mechanisms of action. The use of agents binding to surface glycans has been recently suggested as a new approach to antitrypanosomal design and a series of peptidic and non-peptidic carbohydrate-binding agents have been identified as antiparasitics showing efficacy in animal models of sleeping sickness. Here we provide an overview of the nature of surface glycans in three kinetoplastid parasites, T. cruzi, T. brucei and Leishmania. Their role in virulence and host cell invasion is highlighted with the aim of identifying specific glycan–lectin interactions and carbohydrate functions that may be the target of novel carbohydrate-binding agents with therapeutic applications.
Hurricane Maria caused catastrophic damage in Puerto Rico, increasing the risk for morbidity and mortality in the post-impact period. We aimed to establish a syndromic surveillance system to describe the number and type of visits at 2 emergency health-care settings in the same hospital system in Ponce, Puerto Rico.
We implemented a hurricane surveillance system by interviewing patients with a short questionnaire about the reason for visit at a hospital emergency department and associated urgent care clinic in the 6 mo after Hurricane Maria. We then evaluated the system by comparing findings with data from the electronic medical record (EMR) system for the same time period.
The hurricane surveillance system captured information from 5116 participants across the 2 sites, representing 17% of all visits captured in the EMR for the same period. Most visits were associated with acute illness/symptoms (79%), followed by injury (11%). The hurricane surveillance and EMR data were similar, proportionally, by sex, age, and visit category.
The hurricane surveillance system provided timely and representative data about the number and type of visits at 2 sites. This system, or an adapted version using available electronic data, should be considered in future disaster settings.
The aim of this study was to describe individuals seeking care for injury at a major emergency department (ED) in southern Puerto Rico in the months after Hurricane Maria on September 20, 2017.
After informed consent, we used a modified version of the Natural Disaster Morbidity Surveillance Form to determine why patients were visiting the ED during October 16, 2017–March 28, 2018. We analyzed visits where injury was reported as the primary reason for visit and whether it was hurricane-related.
Among 5 116 patients, 573 (11%) reported injury as the primary reason for a visit. Of these, 10% were hurricane-related visits. The most common types of injuries were abrasions, lacerations, and cuts (43% of all injury visits and 50% of hurricane-related visits). The most common mechanisms of injury were falls, slips, trips (268, 47%), and being hit by/or against an object (88, 15%). Most injury visits occurred during the first 3 months after the hurricane.
Surveillance after Hurricane Maria identified injury as the reason for a visit for about 1 in 10 patients visiting the ED, providing evidence on the patterns of injuries in the months following a hurricane. Public health and emergency providers can use this information to anticipate health care needs after a disaster.
From simple averaging to more sophisticated registration and restoration strategies, such as super-resolution (SR), there exist different computational techniques that use a series of images of the same object to generate enhanced images where noise and other distortions have been reduced. In this work, we provide qualitative and quantitative measurements of this enhancement for high-angle annular dark-field scanning transmission electron microscopy imaging. These images are compared in two ways, qualitatively through visual inspection in real and reciprocal space, and quantitatively, through the calculation of objective measurements, such as signal-to-noise ratio and atom column roundness. Results show that these techniques improve the quality of the images. In this paper, we use an SR methodology that allows us to take advantage of the information present in the image frames and to reliably facilitate the analysis of more difficult regions of interest in experimental images, such as surfaces and interfaces. By acquiring a series of cross-sectional experimental images of magnetite (Fe3O4) thin films (111), we have generated interpolated images using averaging and SR, and reconstructed the atomic structure of the very top surface layer that consists of a full monolayer of Fe, with topmost Fe atoms in tetrahedrally coordinated sites.
The disease caused by the influenza virus is a global public health problem due to its high rates of morbidity and mortality. Thus, analysis of the information generated by epidemiological surveillance systems has vital importance for health decision making. A retrospective analysis was performed using data generated by the four molecular diagnostic laboratories of the Mexican Social Security Institute between 2010 and 2016. Demographics, influenza positivity, seasonality, treatment choices and vaccination status analyses were performed for the vaccine according to its composition for each season. In all cases, both the different influenza subtypes and different age groups were considered separately. The circulation of A/H1N1pdm09 (48.7%), influenza A/H3N2 (21.1%), influenza B (12.6%), influenza A not subtyped (11%) and influenza A/H1N1 (6.6%) exhibited well-defined annual seasonality between November and March, and there were significant increases in the number of cases every 2 years. An inadequate use of oseltamivir was determined in 38% of cases, and the vaccination status in general varied between 12.1 and 18.5% depending on the season. Our results provide current information about influenza in Mexico and demonstrate the need to update both operational case definitions and medical practice guidelines to reduce the inappropriate use of antibiotics and antivirals.
Physical punishment of children is linked to negative developmental outcomes. The widely used Positive Parenting Program (Triple P) promotes alternative responses to physical punishment. Data on the effectiveness of the Triple P Seminar Series is limited. In this study, Canadian parents’ reports of physical punishment, non-physical punishment, and non-punitive responses were compared before and after they attended the Triple P Seminar Series. Twenty-seven parents of children aged 2 to 6 years attended the Seminar Series and completed pre- and post-intervention questionnaires measuring the number of times they used various physical punishments, non-physical punishments, and non-punitive responses in the past month. Hypotheses were tested using univariate descriptive analyses, paired samples t tests, and Wilcoxon Signed Rank Tests. Parents’ reports of physical punishment decreased on only one of the four physical punishment items (shaking/grabbing) from pre- to post-intervention. Over the course of the Seminar Series, parents became more likely to emphasise rules and to punish their children by taking things away from them. The findings suggest that the Seminar Series has limited effectiveness in reducing physical punishments or increasing non-punitive responses. Further research on this question is needed.