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Characterisation of genetic diversity in a large number of European pig populations has been undertaken with EC support. The populations sampled included local (rare) breeds, national varieties of the major international breeds, commercial lines and the Chinese Meishan breed. A second phase of the project will sample a further 50 Chinese breeds. Neutral genetic markers (AFLP and microsatellites), with individual or bulk typing, were used and compared.
DNA from 59 European pig populations was extracted on samples of about 50 individuals per population. Individuals were typed for 50 microsatellites and for 148 AFLP bands. A subset of 25 populations was typed for 20 microsatellites on pools of DNA. Allele frequencies were estimated by direct allele counting for the co-dominant markers. Frequencies of AFLP negative alleles (absent bands) were obtained by taking the square root of absent band frequencies. Within-breed variability was summarised using standard statistics: expected and observed heterozygosity, mean observed and effective numbers of alleles, and F statistics. Between-breed diversity analysis was based on a bootstrapped Neighbor-Joining (NJ) tree derived from Reynolds distances (DR). The standard distance of Nei (DS) was also calculated.
Our previous work revealed substantial heterogeneity in the cognitive profile of bipolar disorder (BD) due to the presence of three underlying cognitive subgroups characterized as: globally impaired, selectively impaired, or cognitively intact. In an effort to determine whether these subgroups are differentially related to genetic risk for the illness, we investigated whether cognitive deficits were more pronounced in unaffected siblings (UAS) of BD probands within identified clusters.
Cluster analysis was used to identify cognitive clusters in BD (N = 60). UAS (N = 49) were classified into groups according to their proband sibling's cluster assignment; comparisons were made across all clusters and healthy controls (HCs; N = 71).
Three cognitive clusters in BD emerged: a globally impaired (36.7%), a selectively impaired (30%), and a cognitively intact cluster (33.3%). UAS showed a qualitatively similar pattern to their BD siblings; UAS of the globally impaired BD cluster showed verbal memory and general cognitive impairments relative to HCs. In contrast, UAS of the other two clusters did not differ from HCs.
This study corroborates findings from prior work regarding the presence of cognitive heterogeneity in BD. UAS of subjects in the globally impaired BD cluster presented with a qualitatively similar cognitive profile to their siblings and performed worse than all other BD clusters and UAS groups. This suggests that inherited risk factors may be contributing to cognitive deficits more notably in one subgroup of patients with BD, pointing toward differential causes of cognitive deficits in discrete subgroups of patients with the disorder.
Pre-slaughter transportation may affect poultry welfare and mortality rates. A retrospective analysis was conducted to examine the effect of environmental, management and individual factors on the percentage of dead birds during pre-slaughter transportation (dead-on-arrival, DOA). The variables accounted for in the analyses included: environmental temperature, travel duration, genetic line, gender, crate type and crate stocking density. Among the 41 452 loads of turkeys (34 696 388 birds) and 3241 of end of lay hens (21 788 124 birds) transported to three large abattoirs in northern Italy in a 3-year period, the median DOA was 0.14% in turkeys, and 0.38% in hens. In turkeys, travel duration longer than 30 min, temperature higher than 26°C and high in-crate densities were associated with increased DOA. In winter (⩽2°C), high stocking densities did not reduce the mortality risk from cold stress; on the contrary, for stocking densities either near to or just above the maximum density in EC Reg. 1/2005, the DOA risk was greater than for loads with densities of 10 kg/m2 less than the EC maximum. Male birds and specific genetic lines also showed a higher DOA. In hens, transportation lasting longer than 2 h and the brown-feathered breed were associated with higher DOA. Dead-on-arrival progressively increased with travel duration, remaining constant between 4 and 6 h and peaking at 8 h (median: 0.57%). The maximum DOA increase was detected during winter. These results show that several species-specific factors may lead to increased risk of mortality.
Background: Verbal memory (VM) impairment is prominent in bipolar disorder (BD) and is linked to functional outcomes. However, the intricacies of VM impairment have not yet been studied in a large sample of BD patients. Moreover, some have proposed VM deficits that may be mediated by organizational strategies, such as semantic or serial clustering. Thus, the exact nature of VM break-down in BD patients is not well understood, limiting remediation efforts. We investigated the intricacies of VM deficits in BD patients versus healthy controls (HCs) and examined whether verbal learning differences were mediated by use of clustering strategies. Methods: The California Verbal Learning Test (CVLT) was administered to 113 affectively stable BD patients and 106 HCs. We compared diagnostic groups on all CVLT indices and investigated whether group differences in verbal learning were mediated by clustering strategies. Results: Although BD patients showed significantly poorer attention, learning, and memory, these indices were only mildly impaired. However, BD patients evidenced poorer use of effective learning strategies and lower recall consistency, with these indices falling in the moderately impaired range. Moreover, relative reliance on semantic clustering fully mediated the relationship between diagnostic category and verbal learning, while reliance on serial clustering partially mediated this relationship. Conclusions: VM deficits in affectively stable bipolar patients were widespread but were generally mildly impaired. However, patients displayed inadequate use of organizational strategies with clear separation from HCs on semantic and serial clustering. Remediation efforts may benefit from education about mnemonic devices or “chunking” techniques to attenuate VM deficits in BD. (JINS, 2017, 23, 358–366)
In this paper the defects generated by ion implantation in 4H-SiC DIMOSFET (Double Implanted MOSFETs), and their evolution after annealing process, have been studied in detail. The point defects generated by the source or body implantation process have been detected by micro-photoluminescence (µPL) and the effect of these defects on the electrical characteristics of the DIMOSFET has been studied. The role of the annealing process has been carefully investigated by using different temperatures. It appears fundamental for the restoring of the crystal damage. The effect of the ion implantation dose has been investigated as well. By reducing the source ion implanted dose a large decrease of point defects has been detected and a considerable improvement of the electrical characteristic of the DIMOSFET has been observed.
The activity and circulation of influenza viruses in Argentina was studied during 2012 as part of the Argentinean Surveillance for Influenza and other Respiratory Viruses, in the context of Global Influenza Surveillance. The antigenicity and molecular characteristics of haemagglutinins (HA) of circulating influenza A and B viruses were analysed to assess the emergence of virus variants. Susceptibility to oseltamivir and zanamivir was evaluated by enzymatic assay and results were backed-up by sequencing of the neuraminidase (NA) genes. During the 2012 season, influenza virus circulation in Argentina was detected from weeks 24 to 51. The HA sequences of the studied A(H1N1)pdm09 subtype viruses segregated in a different genetic group compared to those identified during the 2009 pandemic, although they were still closely related antigenically to the vaccine virus A/California/07/2009. The HA sequences of the A(H3N2) viruses analysed fell into the A/Victoria/208/2009 clade, genetic group 3C. A mixed circulation of virus variants belonging to B/Victoria and B/Yamagata lineages was detected, with B/Victoria being dominant. All viruses tested were sensitive to oseltamivir and zanamivir except one. This isolate, an A(H1N1)pdm09 virus possessing the substitution NA-N295S, showed highly reduced inhibition by oseltamivir and reduced inhibition by zanamivir. Virological and epidemiological surveillance remains critical for detection of evolving influenza viruses.
Familial aggregation of isolated abdominal aortic and isolated intracranial aneurysms have been described. Therefore, districtual aneurysm without a systemic genetic disease (e.g. Marfan, Ehlers Danlos etc.) can have a genetic basis. The authors are reporting on the development, in the sixth decade of life, of popliteal aneurysm in two identical twins E.U. and E.C. Zygosity was established on the basis of blood-group determinations, HLA haplotypes and cytogenetic variants. Mild clinical symptoms (intermittent claudication, calf cramps) had begun in E.C. at 21 years of age. Later, at 52 years of age, a thrombosis of the aneurysmatic sac on one side required surgical treatment. E.U. showed no clinical symptoms until the age of 60, when, within the interval of a few months, bilateral thrombosis had developed. The weight difference in the two subjects (E.C. 72 Kg, E.U. 64 Kg) may explain the difference between them as regards the age of onset of symptoms and body sides (one or both) affected. Angiographic, macroscopic and histologic aspects are documented. On surgical intervention, the aneursym was found at the biforcation of the popliteal artery, but no anomalous insertion of gas-trocnemii appeared to cause pressure on the artery leading to aneurysmatic dilatation. The aneurysmatic sac measured 2.5 cm in diameter and on histological examination, using haematoxylin-eosin and Van Gieson stain, showed fragmented elastic, collagen fibres.
We propose a point-particle model for two-way coupling of water droplets dispersed in the turbulent flow of a carrier gas consisting of air and water vapour. We adopt an Euler–Lagrangian formulation based on conservation laws for the mass, momentum and energy of the continuous phase and on empirical correlations describing momentum, heat and mass transfer between the droplet phase and the carrier gas phase. An incompressible flow formulation is applied for direct numerical simulation of differentially heated turbulent channel flow. The two-way coupling is investigated in terms of its effects on mass and heat transfer characteristics and the resulting droplet size distribution. Compared to simulations without droplets or those with solid particles with the same size and specific heat as the water droplets, a significant increase in Nusselt number is found, arising from the additional phase changes. The Nusselt number increases with increasing ambient temperature and is almost independent of the heat flux applied to the walls of the channel. The time-averaged droplet size distribution displays a characteristic dependence on position expressing the combined effect of turbophoresis and phase changes in turbulent wall-bounded flow. In the statistically steady state that is reached after a long time, the resulting flow exhibits a mean motion of water vapour from the warm wall to the cold wall, where it condenses on average, followed by a net mean mass transfer of droplets from the cold wall to the warm wall.
Recent data suggest trait-like neurocognitive impairments in bipolar disorder (BPD), with deficits about 1 s.d. below average, less severe than deficits noted in schizophrenia. The frequency of significant impairment in BPD is approximately 60%, with 40% of patients characterized as cognitively spared. This contrasts with a more homogeneous presentation in schizophrenia. It is not understood why some BPD patients develop deficits while others do not.
A total of 136 patients with BPD completed the MATRICS Consensus Cognitive Battery and data were entered into hierarchical cluster analyses to: (1) determine the optimal number of clusters (subgroups) that fit the sample; and (2) assign subjects to a specific cluster based on individual profiles. We then compared subgroups on several clinical factors and real-world community functioning.
Three distinct neurocognitive subgroups were found: (1) an intact group with performance comparable with healthy controls on all domains but with superior social cognition; (2) a selective impairment group with moderate deficits on processing speed, attention, verbal learning and social cognition and normal functioning in other domains; and (3) a global impairment group with severe deficits across all cognitive domains comparable with deficits in schizophrenia.
These results suggest the presence of multiple cognitive subgroups in BPD with unique profiles and begin to address the relationships between these subgroups, several clinical factors and functional outcome. Next steps will include using these data to help guide future efforts to target these disabling symptoms with treatment.
The synthesis of hierarchically assembled Al-doped ZnO layers by Pulsed Laser Deposition (PLD) at room temperature was investigated. PLD was performed in a background pressure of 100 Pa O2 to deposit clusters in a low energy regime and obtain nano- and mesostructures resulting from a hierarchical assembly of nanoclusters. We here analyzed the effects of varying the gas flow rate on mesoscale morphology, mass density and optical properties. The variation of the target-to-substrate distance was also investigated, identifying its effects on mass density and film morphology. The optimization of optical properties in terms of transparency and light scattering capability is of potential interest for photovoltaic applications.
In 2008, nationwide investigations of a Salmonella serotype Saintpaul outbreak led first to consumer warnings for Roma and red round tomatoes, then later for jalapeño and serrano peppers. In New Mexico, where there were a large number of cases but no restaurant-based clusters, the NM Department of Health and the Indian Health Service participated with CDC in individual-level and household-level case-control studies of infections in New Mexico and the Navajo Nation. No food item was associated in the individual-level study. In the household-level study, households with an ill member were more likely to have had jalapeño peppers present during the exposure period and to have reported ever having serrano peppers in the household. This report illustrates the complexity of this investigation, the limitations of traditional individual-level case-control studies when vehicles of infection are ingredients or commonly eaten with other foods, and the added value of a household-level study.
The objective of the work was to evaluate the long-term capacity of sintered
glass to retain high-level nuclear wastes (HLW) in near-repository
conditions. We have studied the corrosion behavior of waste forms partially
devitrified (43 vol.%) in different aqueous media. Devitrified samples were
irradiated at doses (γ radiation from a Co 60 source) ranging
from 1.4 × 106 Gy to 2.0 × 108 Gy, in order to study
their aqueous corrosion resistance in simulated underground water. The
results show little or no effect of irradiation on the density,
microstructure and corrosion resistance. The global dissolution rate was
almost constant around a value of 5×10−5 g. cm−2
d−1. Elemental dissolution rates were also unaffected by
The proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 1 (PCSK1) gene encodes the prohormone convertase 1/3 enzyme that processes prohormones into functional hormones that, in turn, regulate central and peripheral energy metabolism. Mutations in the human PCSK1 gene cause severe monogenic obesity or confer risk of obesity. We herein investigated the porcine PCSK1 gene with the aim of identifying polymorphisms associated with fat deposition and production traits in Italian heavy pigs. By re-sequencing about 5.1 kb of this gene in 21 pigs of different breeds, we discovered 14 polymorphisms that were organized in nine haplotypes, clearly distributed in two clades of putative European and Asian origin. Then we re-mapped this gene on porcine chromosome 2 and analysed its expression in several tissues including gastric oxyntic mucosa of weanling pigs in which PCSK1 processes the pre-pro-ghrelin into ghrelin, which in turn is involved in the control of feed intake and energy metabolism. Association analyses between PCSK1 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and production, carcass and several other traits were conducted on five groups of pigs from three different experimental designs, for a total of 1221 animals. Results indicated that the analysed SNPs were associated (P < 0.01 or P < 0.05) with several traits including backfat thickness and visible intermuscular fat in Italian Duroc (ID) and growth performances in Italian Large White (ILW) and in ILW × Italian Landrace pigs. However, the effects estimated in the ILW were opposite to the effects reported in the ID pigs. Suggestive association (P < 0.10) was observed with muscle cathepsin B activity, opening, if confirmed, potential applications to reduce the excessive softness defect of the green hams that is of particular concern for the processing industry. The results obtained supported the need to further investigate the PCSK1 gene to fully exploit the value of its variability and apply this information in pig breeding programmes.
Variation in understorey irradiance is both a cause and consequence of the structure and dynamics of closed-canopy forests, which are also influenced by soil nutrients and water availability. We tested the hypothesis that understorey light regimes differ among four mixed dipterocarp forest types that share the same rainfall, but grow on different soils along an edaphic gradient at one site in Borneo. Based on data from photosynthetically active radiation sensors deployed at 1-m height at 36 locations for 351 sensor-days, we found significant soil-related variation in irradiance. The more productive forest types on clay and fine loam had lower daily photosynthetic photon flux density (PPFD) than those on the more nutrient-depleted and better-drained sandy loam and loam. They also had fewer moderate to high-intensity sunflecks, and a greater proportion of their daily PPFD came from low-intensity light. Understorey irradiance did not, however, monotonically decline with increasing soil resources. Forests on intermediate soils had greater irradiance than those with more and less soil resources, due to steeper slopes. Plant communities arrayed on resource gradients are commonly used to test hypotheses of environmental factors driving their assembly. Our results indicate that consideration of multiple resource dimensions in such tests is critical.
We encapsulate a number of fullerenes inside single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) including La2@C80 and ErxSc3–xN@C80(x=0–3). The structural properties of these nanoscopic hybrid materials are described using high resolution transmission electron microscopy and electron diffraction. It is found that the encapsulated fullerenes self-assemble into long, one-dimensional chains. The thermal stability of these supramolecular assemblies are studied and large variations are found. The behavior is nominally consistent with the mass of the encapsulated metallofullerenes.
Our recent achievement of high-yield C60@SWNT synthesis facilitates characterization by various techniques, including selected area electron diffraction (SAD) and Raman spectroscopy. The obtained SAD patterns show that interior C60 molecules sit on a simple 1-D lattice having a parameter of 1.00 nm. Simulated SAD patterns and real-space measurements both support this determination and do not indicate a lattice with a more complex basis, e.g. a dimer basis. Empty and bulk-filled SWNTs (22%, 56%, and 90% yields), each subjected to identical processing steps, were examined by room temperature Raman spectroscopy. Systematic differences are seen between the spectra of filled and unfilled SWNTs, particularly with respect to the G- and RBM-bands of the nanotubes. We present a possible explanation for this behavior.