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This is a copy of the slides presented at the meeting but not formally written up for the volume.
Engineered nanoparticulate systems are anticipated to lead to advances in understanding biological processes at the molecular level and progress in the development of diagnostic tools and innovative therapies. Nanoparticle based imaging agents such as fluorescent dye-doped silica nanoparticles, quantum dots, gold nanoparticles, etc. have overcome many of the limitations of conventional contrast agents (organic dyes) such as poor photostability, low quantum yield and insufficient in vitro and in vivo stability. Additionally, the development of multifunctional nanoparticles, which can be detected simultaneously by multiple techniques e.g. Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and Optical Imaging integrate the advantages of high sensitivity (from optical method of detection, e.g., fluorescence) with the potential of true three dimensional imaging of biological structures and processes at cellular resolution (e.g. via MRI). Microemulsions have attracted considerable interest as potential delivery vehicles for drugs with poor aqueous solubility as well as for drug detoxification. Several favorable properties of microemulsions such as transparency, easy of preparation, sterilization and nanometer droplets size (providing a relatively high interfacial area and low interfacial energy) have made them suitable for drug detoxification applications. In this presentation, highlights of advances made in synthesis, characterization and performance evaluation of nanoengineered particulate systems in targeted areas such as imaging of biological specimens using photostable nanoparticle based imaging probes, pulmonary therapeutics, and microemulsion mediated detoxification of drugs will be discussed. The toxicological assessment of selected systems will also be presented.
A national need is to prepare for and respond to accidental or intentional disasters categorized as chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, or explosive (CBRNE). These incidents require specific subject-matter expertise, yet have commonalities. We identify 7 core elements comprising CBRNE science that require integration for effective preparedness planning and public health and medical response and recovery. These core elements are (1) basic and clinical sciences, (2) modeling and systems management, (3) planning, (4) response and incident management, (5) recovery and resilience, (6) lessons learned, and (7) continuous improvement. A key feature is the ability of relevant subject matter experts to integrate information into response operations. We propose the CBRNE medical operations science support expert as a professional who (1) understands that CBRNE incidents require an integrated systems approach, (2) understands the key functions and contributions of CBRNE science practitioners, (3) helps direct strategic and tactical CBRNE planning and responses through first-hand experience, and (4) provides advice to senior decision-makers managing response activities. Recognition of both CBRNE science as a distinct competency and the establishment of the CBRNE medical operations science support expert informs the public of the enormous progress made, broadcasts opportunities for new talent, and enhances the sophistication and analytic expertise of senior managers planning for and responding to CBRNE incidents.
The increased use of insecticide seed treatments in rice has raised many questions about the potential benefits of these products. In 2014 and 2015, a field experiment was conducted near Stuttgart and Lonoke, AR, to evaluate whether an insecticide seed treatment could possibly lessen injury from acetolactate synthase (ALS)–inhibiting herbicides in imidazolinone-resistant (IR) rice. Two IR cultivars were tested (a hybrid, ‘CLXL745’, and an inbred, ‘CL152’), with and without an insecticide seed treatment (thiamethoxam). Four different herbicide combinations were evaluated: a nontreated control, two applications of bispyribac-sodium (hereafter bispyribac), two applications of imazethapyr, and two applications of imazethapyr plus bispyribac. The first herbicide application was to two- to three-leaf rice, and the second immediately prior to flooding (one- to two-tiller). At both 2 and 4 wk after final treatment (WAFT), the sequential applications of imazethapyr or bispyribac plus imazethapyr were more injurious to CLXL745 than CL152. This increased injury led to decreased groundcover 3 WAFT. Rice treated with thiamethoxam was less injured than nontreated rice and had improved groundcover and greater canopy heights. Even with up to 32% injury, the rice plants recovered by the end of the growing season, and yields within a cultivar were similar with and without a thiamethoxam seed treatment across all herbicide treatments. Based on these results, thiamethoxam can partially protect rice from injury caused by ALS-inhibiting herbicides as well as increase groundcover and canopy height; that is, the injury to rice never negatively affected yield.
The antiquity of iron meteorites and the inferred early intense heating by the decay of 26Al suggest that many planetesimals were molten beneath a thin insulating cap at the same time as chondrules were being made. As those planetesimals were colliding and merging, it seems inevitable that impact plumes of droplets from their liquid interiors would have been launched into space and cooled to form chondrules. We call the process splashing; it is quite distinct from making droplets by jetting during hypervelocity impacts. Evidence both for the existence of molten planetesimals, and for the cooling of chondrules within a plume setting, is strong and growing. Detailed petrographic and isotopic features of chondrules, particularly in carbonaceous chondrites (that probably formed beyond the orbit of Jupiter), suggest that the chondrule plume would have been ‘dirty’ and the otherwise uniform droplets would have been contaminated with earlier-formed dust and larger grains from a variety of sources. The contamination possibly accounts for relict grains, for the spread of oxygen isotopes along the primitive chondrule mineral (PCM) line in carbonaceous chondrites, and for the newly recognized nucleosynthetic isotopic complementarity between chondrules and matrix in Allende.
Reconstruction of lake-level fluctuations from landform and outcrop evidence typically involves characterizing periods with relative high stands. We developed a new approach to provide water-level estimates in the absence of shoreline evidence for Owens Lake in eastern California by integrating landform, outcrop, and existing lake-core data with wind-wave and sediment entrainment modeling of lake-core sedimentology. We also refined the late Holocene lake-level history of Owens Lake by dating four previously undated shoreline features above the water level (1096.4 m) in AD 1872. The new ages coincide with wetter and cooler climate during the Neopluvial (~3.6 ka), Medieval Pluvial (~0.8 ka), and Little Ice Age (~0.35 ka). Dates from stumps below 1096 m also indicate two periods of low stands at ~0.89 and 0.67 ka during the Medieval Climatic Anomaly. The timing of modeled water levels associated with 22 mud and sand units in lake cores agree well with shoreline records of Owens Lake and nearby Mono Lake, as well as with proxy evidence for relatively wet and dry periods from tree-ring and glacial records within the watershed. Our integrated analysis provides a continuous 4000-yr lake-level record showing the timing, duration, and magnitude of hydroclimate variability along the south-central Sierra Nevada.
The deep subsurface of other planetary bodies is of special interest for robotic and human exploration. The subsurface provides access to planetary interior processes, thus yielding insights into planetary formation and evolution. On Mars, the subsurface might harbour the most habitable conditions. In the context of human exploration, the subsurface can provide refugia for habitation from extreme surface conditions. We describe the fifth Mine Analogue Research (MINAR 5) programme at 1 km depth in the Boulby Mine, UK in collaboration with Spaceward Bound NASA and the Kalam Centre, India, to test instruments and methods for the robotic and human exploration of deep environments on the Moon and Mars. The geological context in Permian evaporites provides an analogue to evaporitic materials on other planetary bodies such as Mars. A wide range of sample acquisition instruments (NASA drills, Small Planetary Impulse Tool (SPLIT) robotic hammer, universal sampling bags), analytical instruments (Raman spectroscopy, Close-Up Imager, Minion DNA sequencing technology, methane stable isotope analysis, biomolecule and metabolic life detection instruments) and environmental monitoring equipment (passive air particle sampler, particle detectors and environmental monitoring equipment) was deployed in an integrated campaign. Investigations included studying the geochemical signatures of chloride and sulphate evaporitic minerals, testing methods for life detection and planetary protection around human-tended operations, and investigations on the radiation environment of the deep subsurface. The MINAR analogue activity occurs in an active mine, showing how the development of space exploration technology can be used to contribute to addressing immediate Earth-based challenges. During the campaign, in collaboration with European Space Agency (ESA), MINAR was used for astronaut familiarization with future exploration tools and techniques. The campaign was used to develop primary and secondary school and primary to secondary transition curriculum materials on-site during the campaign which was focused on a classroom extra vehicular activity simulation.
This article presents preliminary findings from a multi-year, multi-disciplinary text analysis project using an ancient and medieval Chinese corpus of over five million characters in works that date from the earliest received texts to the Song dynasty. It describes “distant reading” methods in the humanities and the authors’ corpus; introduces topic-modeling procedures; answers questions about the authors’ data; discusses complementary relationships between machine learning and human expertise; explains topics represented in Analects, Mencius, and Xunzi that set each of those texts apart from the other two; and explains topics that intersect all three texts. The authors’ results confirm many scholarly opinions derived from close-reading methods, suggest a reappraisal of Xunzi’s shared semantic content with Analects, and yield several actionable research questions for traditional scholarship. The aim of this article is to initiate a new conversation about implications of machine learning for the study of Asian texts.
Plunging Petroleum Prices have elevated Mexico into the position of de facto leadership of Latin American, and perhaps of other, debtor nations in their negotiations with international creditors. Once regarded as a model debtor, Mexico has emerged as forceful spokesman for debt relief. Although Mexican authorities often couch their statements concerning foreign debt repayments in conciliatory, and even contradictory, terms, the underlying fact is that Mexico's demand for some debt relief is tantamount to an unspoken repudiation of a portion of its $96 billion foreign debt. If Mexico, the world's second largest debtor, succeeds in wresting debt relief from its lenders, then it must be recognized that debtor-creditor relationships have undergone a fundamental change: political realities, not contract law, ultimately determine how debt is to be repaid, if at all. Mexico, more by circumstance than by choice, has led debtors and creditors alike into a brave new world.
It is generally accepted that environmental enrichment improves the welfare of growing pigs through the provision of substrates for exploratory and manipulatory behaviour. EC Directive 2001/93 and The Welfare of Farmed Animals (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2003 state that pigs must have permanent access to materials to enable proper investigation and manipulation activities, and give as examples straw, hay, wood, sawdust, mushroom compost and peat. However, the use of particulate rooting materials in slatted systems can cause difficulties for slurry management and it is important to establish whether alternative enrichment forms, such as hanging objects, can be equally effective. The aim of this study was to assess the effects of environmental enrichment with either hanging manipulable toys or rootable substrates on the behaviour of finishing pigs in two contrasting housing systems.
There is a need to identify finishing systems for pigs that meet the requirements of both pig producers and society. These require that a system is economically efficient, but also takes due account of animal welfare, food safety and environmental considerations. As part of an integrated investigation, this study assessed the health and welfare implications of giving pigs either dry or liquid feed when housed in either fully-slatted or straw-based accommodation.
The Taipan galaxy survey (hereafter simply ‘Taipan’) is a multi-object spectroscopic survey starting in 2017 that will cover 2π steradians over the southern sky (δ ≲ 10°, |b| ≳ 10°), and obtain optical spectra for about two million galaxies out to z < 0.4. Taipan will use the newly refurbished 1.2-m UK Schmidt Telescope at Siding Spring Observatory with the new TAIPAN instrument, which includes an innovative ‘Starbugs’ positioning system capable of rapidly and simultaneously deploying up to 150 spectroscopic fibres (and up to 300 with a proposed upgrade) over the 6° diameter focal plane, and a purpose-built spectrograph operating in the range from 370 to 870 nm with resolving power R ≳ 2000. The main scientific goals of Taipan are (i) to measure the distance scale of the Universe (primarily governed by the local expansion rate, H0) to 1% precision, and the growth rate of structure to 5%; (ii) to make the most extensive map yet constructed of the total mass distribution and motions in the local Universe, using peculiar velocities based on improved Fundamental Plane distances, which will enable sensitive tests of gravitational physics; and (iii) to deliver a legacy sample of low-redshift galaxies as a unique laboratory for studying galaxy evolution as a function of dark matter halo and stellar mass and environment. The final survey, which will be completed within 5 yrs, will consist of a complete magnitude-limited sample (i ⩽ 17) of about 1.2 × 106 galaxies supplemented by an extension to higher redshifts and fainter magnitudes (i ⩽ 18.1) of a luminous red galaxy sample of about 0.8 × 106 galaxies. Observations and data processing will be carried out remotely and in a fully automated way, using a purpose-built automated ‘virtual observer’ software and an automated data reduction pipeline. The Taipan survey is deliberately designed to maximise its legacy value by complementing and enhancing current and planned surveys of the southern sky at wavelengths from the optical to the radio; it will become the primary redshift and optical spectroscopic reference catalogue for the local extragalactic Universe in the southern sky for the coming decade.
Recent research on political discussion has focused on whether aspects of interaction create a ‘democratic dilemma’ for the mass public in which people face a choice between political participation and political tolerance. This article argues that there are important variations in how people react to their immediate social contacts. It explores this idea by studying how social disagreement and expertise interact with gender to explain variance in political participation. First, it shows that there are conflicting expectations in the literature about how such dynamics should manifest, despite agreement that men and women should experience different kinds and degrees of social influence. Secondly, it examines these expectations by revisiting prominent, network-based explanations of political participation; it finds that these relationships do not display consistency across sex differences. The results point to the existence of varied ‘social logics’ for men and women, and suggest the need to reconsider how to think about the efficacy of discussion and disagreement in a democratic society.
This report has two major purposes. First, we summarize here work by our team on the determination of the density of stars near the centers of a large sample of galaxies observed with the Hubble Space Telescope. There appear to be two varieties of elliptical galaxies (and bulges). The stellar densities near the centers of small elliptical galaxies exceed those of globular clusters and the density of the universe at the recombination epoch. The radial dependence of density and implied gravitational force seems inconsistent (at least in the case of the smaller elliptical galaxies) with a long-lived triaxial configuration. It therefore seems likely that the central regions of less luminous elliptical galaxies are axisymmetric. For the more luminous ellipticals, the central densities are far more modest and the presence of a distinct core (defined below) is generally well established. Even in these cases, however, we find few if any galaxies with analytic (Taylor expandable) stellar densities near the center.
This work provides new insights into human responses to and perceptions of sea-level rise at a time when the landscapes of north-west Europe were radically changing. These issues are investigated through a case study focused on the Channel Islands. We report on the excavation of two sites, Canal du Squez in Jersey and Lihou (GU582) in Guernsey, and the study of museum collections across the Channel Islands. We argue that people were drawn to this area as a result of the dynamic environmental processes occurring and the opportunities these created. The evidence suggests that the area was a particular focus during the Middle Mesolithic, when Guernsey and Alderney were already islands and while Jersey was a peninsula of northern France. Insularisation does not appear to have created a barrier to occupation during either the Middle or Final Mesolithic, indicating the appearance of lifeways increasingly focused on maritime voyaging and marine resources from the second half of the 9th millennium BC onwards.