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The Murcia Twin Registry (MTR) is the only population-based registry in Spain. Created in 2006, the registry has been growing more than a decade to become one of the references for twin research in the Mediterranean region. The MTR database currently comprises 3545 adult participants born between 1940 and 1977. It also holds a recently launched satellite registry of university students (N = 204). Along five waves of data collection, the registry has gathered questionnaire and anthropometric data, as well as biological samples. The MTR keeps its main research focus on health and health-related behaviors from a public health perspective. This includes lifestyle, health promotion, quality of life or environmental conditions. Future short-term development points to the expansion of the biobank and the continuation of the collection of longitudinal data.
We determined ice velocities for the Academy of Sciences Ice Cap, Severnaya Zemlya, Russian Arctic, during November 2016–November 2017, by feature-tracking 54 pairs of Sentinel-1 synthetic-aperture radar images. Seasonal velocity variations with amplitudes up to 10% of the yearly-averaged velocity were observed. Shorter-term (<15 d) intra-annual velocity variations had average and maximum deviations from the annual mean of up to 16 and 32%, respectively. This indicates the errors that could be incurred if ice discharge values determined from a single pair of images were extrapolated to the whole year. Average ice discharge for 2016–2017 was 1.93 ± 0.12 Gt a−1. The difference from an estimate of ~ 1.4 Gt a−1 for 2003–2009 was attributed to the initiation of ice stream flow in Basin BC. The total geodetic mass balance over 2012–2016 was − 1.72 ± 0.67 Gt a−1 (− 0.31 ± 0.12 m w.e. a−1). The climatic mass balance was not significantly different from zero, at 0.21 ± 0.68 Gt a−1 (0.04 ± 0.12 m w.e. a−1), and has remained near zero at decadal-scale for the last four decades. Therefore, the total mass balance has been controlled largely by variations in ice discharge, whose long-term changes do not appear to have responded to environmental changes but to the intrinsic characteristics of the ice cap governing tidewater glacier dynamics.
The COllaborative project of Development of Anthropometrical measures in Twins (CODATwins) project is a large international collaborative effort to analyze individual-level phenotype data from twins in multiple cohorts from different environments. The main objective is to study factors that modify genetic and environmental variation of height, body mass index (BMI, kg/m2) and size at birth, and additionally to address other research questions such as long-term consequences of birth size. The project started in 2013 and is open to all twin projects in the world having height and weight measures on twins with information on zygosity. Thus far, 54 twin projects from 24 countries have provided individual-level data. The CODATwins database includes 489,981 twin individuals (228,635 complete twin pairs). Since many twin cohorts have collected longitudinal data, there is a total of 1,049,785 height and weight observations. For many cohorts, we also have information on birth weight and length, own smoking behavior and own or parental education. We found that the heritability estimates of height and BMI systematically changed from infancy to old age. Remarkably, only minor differences in the heritability estimates were found across cultural–geographic regions, measurement time and birth cohort for height and BMI. In addition to genetic epidemiological studies, we looked at associations of height and BMI with education, birth weight and smoking status. Within-family analyses examined differences within same-sex and opposite-sex dizygotic twins in birth size and later development. The CODATwins project demonstrates the feasibility and value of international collaboration to address gene-by-exposure interactions that require large sample sizes and address the effects of different exposures across time, geographical regions and socioeconomic status.
Differences in forage nutritive value between morning and afternoon are related to patterns of dehydration and carbohydrate accumulation throughout the day. In this way, management strategies that maximize grazing time during the afternoon could increase forage nutritive value and consequently nutrient intake. The aim of the current experiment was to evaluate the effect of the time of day (06.00 h [designated AM] or 15.00 h [PM]) that cattle are moved to a new paddock on forage nutritive value, grazing behaviour and animal performance of beef cattle on rotationally stocked Marandu palisadegrass (Brachiaria brizantha cv. Marandu Syn. Urochloa brizantha cv. Marandu) pastures. A spring and summer study was conducted in Pirassununga, SP, Brazil from October 2012 to March 2013 (182 days). Treatments were distributed in a randomized complete block design with three replications. Herbage mass, morphological composition, herbage allowance and stocking rates were similar between treatments during spring and summer. Moving animals to a new paddock, regardless of the time of day – 06.00 h (AM) or 15.00 h (PM) – stimulated grazing, modifying the distribution of meals throughout the day. However, compensatory mechanisms among grazing time, bite rate and forage nutritive value throughout the day operated in order to generate similar performance between animals offered a new paddock in the morning or in the afternoon.
The objective was to compare the performance of the updated Charlson comorbidity index (uCCI) and classical CCI (cCCI) in predicting 30-day mortality in patients with Staphylococcus aureus bacteraemia (SAB). All cases of SAB in patients aged ⩾14 years identified at the Microbiology Unit were included prospectively and followed. Comorbidity was evaluated using the cCCI and uCCI. Relevant variables associated with SAB-related mortality, along with cCCI or uCCI scores, were entered into multivariate logistic regression models. Global model fit, model calibration and predictive validity of each model were evaluated and compared. In total, 257 episodes of SAB in 239 patients were included (mean age 74 years; 65% were male). The mean cCCI and uCCI scores were 3.6 (standard deviation, 2.4) and 2.9 (2.3), respectively; 161 (63%) cases had cCCI score ⩾3 and 89 (35%) cases had uCCI score ⩾4. Sixty-five (25%) patients died within 30 days. The cCCI score was not related to mortality in any model, but uCCI score ⩾4 was an independent factor of 30-day mortality (odds ratio, 1.98; 95% confidence interval, 1.05–3.74). The uCCI is a more up-to-date, refined and parsimonious prognostic mortality score than the cCCI; it may thus serve better than the latter in the identification of patients with SAB with worse prognoses.
To assess counts of α4 and α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in nasal polyps of adults with or without long-term exposure to cigarette tobacco smoke.
Twenty-two patients with and 22 patients without exposure to cigarette tobacco smoke participated in the study. After endoscopic polypectomy, the fragments of the nasal polyps were analysed by immunohistochemistry.
Compared to patients with no exposure, patients with exposure showed higher counts of α4 and α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (t-test, p < 0.05). However, in patients with no exposure, multivariate analysis showed gender dimorphism, with lower counts in males than in females, and no influence from other variables (analysis of covariance, p > 0.05).
Exposure to cigarette tobacco smoke may induce increased counts of α4 and α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in nasal polyps of adults, with lower counts in males than females without exposure to tobacco smoke.
Aberration-corrected STEM has become a standard analytical technique in the field of nanoscience. As “designer materials” have become more in demand in academic circles, verification of a desired product makes atomic-resolutionanalysis mandatory. Industry currently faces the same trend where tailor-made materials are customized for a given application. Here we show several examples where quantifiable atomic-scale manipulation of nanomaterials can have a dramatic impact on structure and, by extension, functionality.
In this paper we study the affine focal set, which is the bifurcation set of the affine distance to submanifolds Nn contained in hypersurfaces Mn+1 of the (n + 2)-space. We give conditions under which this affine focal set is a regular hypersurface and, for curves in 3-space, we describe its stable singularities. For a given Darboux vector field ξ of the immersion N ⊂ M, one can define the affine metric g and the affine normal plane bundle . We prove that the g-Laplacian of the position vector belongs to if and only if ξ is parallel. For umbilic and normally flat immersions, the affine focal set reduces to a single line. Submanifolds contained in hyperplanes or hyperquadrics are always normally flat. For N contained in a hyperplane L, we show that N ⊂ M is umbilic if and only if N ⊂ L is an affine sphere and the envelope of tangent spaces is a cone. For M hyperquadric, we prove that N ⊂ M is umbilic if and only if N is contained in a hyperplane. The main result of the paper is a general description of the umbilic and normally flat immersions: given a hypersurface f and a point O in the (n + 1)-space, the immersion (ν, ν · (f − O)), where ν is the co-normal of f, is umbilic and normally flat, and conversely, any umbilic and normally flat immersion is of this type.
Vaccination remains a mainstay of companion animal population health. However, how vaccine use at a population level complies with existing guidelines is unknown. Here we use electronic health records to describe vaccination in dogs, cats and rabbits attending a large sentinel network of UK veterinary practices. In total, 77.9% (95% CI: 77.6–78.1) of animals had recorded vaccinations. The percentage of animals with recorded vaccinations was higher in dogs, neutered animals, in insured dogs and cats and in purebred dogs. Vaccination rates varied in different regions of Great Britain in all species. Dogs and cats belonging to owners living in less deprived areas of England and Scotland were more likely to be recorded as vaccinated. In the vaccinated population, cats received more core vaccines per year of life (0.86) than dogs (0.75), with feline leukaemia vaccines almost as frequent as core vaccines. In dogs, leptospira vaccines were more frequent than core vaccines. This descriptive study suggests a substantial proportion of animals are not benefiting from vaccine protection. For the first time, we identify potential factors associated with variations in recorded vaccination frequency, providing a critical baseline against which to monitor future changes in companion animal vaccination and evidence to inform future targeted health interventions.
Forage is the primary feed source for livestock in tropical regions and energy is one of the most important nutrients for ruminant nutrition. The effects of harvest management of Marandu palisade grass (Brachiaria brizantha cv. Marandu Syn. Urochloa brizantha cv. Marandu) on non-structural carbohydrate (NSC) concentrations were evaluated. A plot (Experiment 1) and a greenhouse study (Experiment 2) were conducted in 2013–14. In Experiment 1, treatments were the factorial arrangement of two harvest times and two vertical canopy layers (upper and intermediate), distributed in a completely randomized design with five replicates. In Experiment 2, treatments were the factorial arrangement of six harvest times and two morphological fractions (leaf blade and pseudostem). In both experiments, NSC concentration increased during the day. Upper and intermediate canopy layers had greater NSC concentration at 15.00 than 06.00 h during spring and summer. In addition, the magnitude of NSC increase was greater in the upper than intermediate canopy layer and in spring than summer. Marandu palisade grass shows greater digestibility in the afternoon than morning, representing an opportunity to optimize energy concentration through harvest management.
Electroejaculation (EE) is stressful and probably painful; thus the administration of anaesthesia is recommended to decrease those negative effects. However, anaesthesia has a direct risk of provoking death, but sedation is less risky than anaesthesia. At the same time, α2-adrenergic agonists may improve semen quality. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to compare the physiological and behavioural responses indicative of stress and possibly pain, and the semen quality in electroejaculated untreated, anaesthetised or sedated goat bucks. Semen was collected from eight bucks using three different procedures in all them (EE in untreated bucks, EE under sedation or EE under general anaesthesia). The number of vocalizations during EE and the behavioural pattern before and after procedures were recorded. Pain visual analogue scale (VAS) score was also determined during EE. Rectal temperature, heart rate, serum cortisol concentration, biochemical and haematological parameters were measured before and after each procedure, and sperm characteristics were determined. Bucks vocalised more often when untreated than sedated or anaesthetised (P<0.02). The pain VAS score was greater when bucks were untreated than sedated or anaesthetised (P<0.002). The rectal temperature, heart rate, total protein, albumin and haemoglobin concentrations were greater when bucks were untreated than anaesthetised or sedated (P<0.02). Serum cortisol increased after EE (P=0.0006), without differences between procedures. The frequency and duration of lying down after EE were greater when bucks were anaesthetised than sedated or untreated (P<0.05), and were also greater when bucks were sedated than untreated (P<0.05). The number of times that the animal tried to stand up after EE was greater when bucks were anaesthetised than sedated or untreated (P<0.02). The sperm mass motility was greater when bucks were anaesthetised or sedated than when they were untreated (P=0.048). When animals were sedated, the ejaculate contained more spermatozoa with functional plasma membrane (P=0.03) and morphologically normal (P=0.05) than when they were untreated. In conclusion, general anaesthesia and sedation decreased the stress and probably the pain response provoked by EE and especially sedation improved the quality of the semen collected.
The excessive consumption of carbohydrates is related to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) in infants and adults. The effect of combining maternal malnutrition and a high carbohydrate intake on the development of NAFLD in adulthood remains unknown. We therefore hypothesized that consumption of 5% sucrose by the offspring of dams fed a low-protein diet during pregnancy promotes liver fat accumulation and oxidative damage differently in females and males. To test this, 12-month-old female and male offspring of mothers fed a Control (C) or low-protein diet (Restricted, R) were provided with either tap water or 5% sucrose for a period of 10 weeks. Livers were excised to measure the fat content and 3-nitrotyrosine (3-NTyr) immunostaining; serum samples were also obtained to measure the concentration of malondialdehyde (MDA). Data were analyzed using a non-repeated measures three-way analysis of variance to determine significant differences (P<0.05) regarding to the interaction among maternal diet, sucrose consumption and sex. Results showed that the liver fat content of females from R mothers was higher than that of their male counterpart. Hepatic 3-NTyr immunostaining and serum MDA concentrations were not affected by the interaction involving maternal diet, sucrose consumption and sex. Otherwise, liver fat content was correlated with the hepatic 3-NTyr immunostaining and serum MDA concentrations only in females. Thus, sucrose intake in adulthood increases fat content in the female but not in the male rat offspring of dams fed with a low-protein diet during pregnancy. This research emphasizes the importance of a balanced diet during pregnancy and the influence of the diet on the adult offspring.
Silage is recognized as a viable option to cope with seasonal fluctuations in forage availability. Due to the reduced nutrient contents (N and soluble CHO’s) of tropical grasses, the resulting silage is usually of low quality. This factor plays a major role in the adoption of this technology by farmers in developing countries. The inclusion of forage trees to improve the nutritive value of silage is seen as a viable alternative, as forage trees are locally available and farmers are increasingly implementing its use as supplement. Silage resulting from grass/tree mixtures might allow reduced use of conventional grain-based supplement without jeopardizing animal performance (Sol et al., 2002a,b). However, few data is available about adequate inclusion levels of forage tree and grass for silage making. Thus, the objective of the present work was to assess changes in silage quality associated with the inclusion level of forage tree.
Use of grass/forage tree silages have prove to be a viable alternative for animal production in the tropics (Sol et al., 2002a,b). It is also an adequate strategy to cope with seasonal fluctuation of biomass availability (both grass and forage tree). However, limited data is available on the nutritive value (e.g. digestibility, energy content) of this mixtures. Therefore, the objective of the present work was to evaluation the in vitro gas production, apparent digestibility and energy content of silages containing grass and forage trees.
In tropical countries is a common practice to feed cattle with variety of forage trees as supplements. In order to develop adequate strategies for management of trees, an assessment is needed of their potential use (intake) by cattle. Little research has been conducted in this area, and most effort has been focused on single forage evaluation. The objective of this experiment was to assess the preference by cattle of five forage trees. Preference was taken as the voluntary intake of a tree forage offered in a cafeteria trial.
Whether monozygotic (MZ) and dizygotic (DZ) twins differ from each other in a variety of phenotypes is important for genetic twin modeling and for inferences made from twin studies in general. We analyzed whether there were differences in individual, maternal and paternal education between MZ and DZ twins in a large pooled dataset. Information was gathered on individual education for 218,362 adult twins from 27 twin cohorts (53% females; 39% MZ twins), and on maternal and paternal education for 147,315 and 143,056 twins respectively, from 28 twin cohorts (52% females; 38% MZ twins). Together, we had information on individual or parental education from 42 twin cohorts representing 19 countries. The original education classifications were transformed to education years and analyzed using linear regression models. Overall, MZ males had 0.26 (95% CI [0.21, 0.31]) years and MZ females 0.17 (95% CI [0.12, 0.21]) years longer education than DZ twins. The zygosity difference became smaller in more recent birth cohorts for both males and females. Parental education was somewhat longer for fathers of DZ twins in cohorts born in 1990–1999 (0.16 years, 95% CI [0.08, 0.25]) and 2000 or later (0.11 years, 95% CI [0.00, 0.22]), compared with fathers of MZ twins. The results show that the years of both individual and parental education are largely similar in MZ and DZ twins. We suggest that the socio-economic differences between MZ and DZ twins are so small that inferences based upon genetic modeling of twin data are not affected.
The total solar eclipse of July 11, 1991 was observed from “La Matanza”, Baja California Sur, México, only 5 km south of the center line of totality, with several small instruments intended to obtain images of the corona during totality, and using a range of exposure times which allowed us to detect both the inner and outer corona. Relations between large and fine scale structures of the corona, the photospheric and chromospheric activity, and the presence of coronal holes are presented.