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The savannah enclaves (i.e. patches) in the southern Brazilian Amazonia are among the most threatened and poorly surveyed sites in Amazonia. As part of an extensive mammal survey, we set camera traps in three of these savannah enclaves. We obtained 23 independent records of pampas deer Ozotoceros bezoarticus, a medium sized Neotropical cervid that is strongly associated with open habitats and categorized as Vulnerable on the Brazilian Red List of threatened species. These savannah enclaves with confirmed populations of pampas deer lie outside the species’ previously presumed historical range and are at least 350 km from any known extant population. Together, these savannah enclaves add c. 4,000 km2 to the pampas deer's currently known range. The small pampas deer populations in these enclaves are probably isolated by a matrix of Amazon forest, raising questions about spatial genetic structure and meta-population dynamics, and making them vulnerable to local extinction. We highlight the need for further studies, particularly genetic, to assess the conservation status of these populations, the results of which could potentially inform management decisions in other areas of the heavily fragmented range of this species.
The electricity sector is in the midst of a structural change driven by new technologies. In Brazil, the electricity sector regulation has mechanisms to foster innovation, including investments in R&D. Recently, the regulatory agency and the industry have been calling for approaches to increase the rate at which R&D departments generate solutions that end up being adopted. As a result, novel approaches to R&D project management have entered the agenda. In this context, the objective of this paper is to characterise Agile Product Development and its application in a highly regulated sector. The paper presents a systematic literature review with the debates about Agile and new product development. Then, a case study exploring an early adoption of the Agile approach in R&D project management in the Brazilian electricity sector is presented. Results include the identification of the Agile features most frequently mentioned in the literature. Moreover, the case study explores the Agile features that were more easily absorbed in early adoption, such as iterative patterns, and discusses implementation challenges in team structure, feedback loops, and communication.
Survival and infectivity of trypanosomatids rely on cell-surface and secreted glycoconjugates, many of which contain a variable number of galactose residues. Incorporation of galactose to proteins and lipids occurs along the secretory pathway from UDP-galactose (UDP-Gal). Before being used in glycosylation reactions, however, this activated sugar donor must first be transported across the endoplasmic reticulum and Golgi membranes by a specific nucleotide sugar transporter (NST). In this study, we identified an UDP-Gal transporter (named TcNST2 and encoded by the TcCLB.504085.60 gene) from Trypanosoma cruzi, the etiological agent of Chagas disease. TcNST2 was identified by heterologous expression of selected putative nucleotide sugar transporters in a mutant Chinese Hamster Ovary cell line. TcNST2 mRNA levels were detected in all T. cruzi life-cycle forms, with an increase in expression in axenic amastigotes. Confocal microscope analysis indicated that the transporter is specifically localized to the Golgi apparatus. A three-dimensional model of TcNST2 suggested an overall structural conservation as compared with members of the metabolite transporter superfamily and also suggested specific features that could be related to its activity. The identification of this transporter is an important step toward a better understanding of glycoconjugate biosynthesis and the role NSTs play in this process in trypanosomatids.
Improvement of the performance of renewable electronic devices is a crucial point for the consolidation of this emerging technology. Herein, we develop a supercapacitor based on cellulose, carbon nanotubes, and ionic liquids. A conductive paper prepared by simple acid hydrolysis of cellulose and carboxylated carbon nanotubes was used as an electrode. A cellulose sponge impregnated with 1-n-butyl-3-methylimidazolium bis(trifluoromethane sulfonyl)imide was used as a separator/electrolyte. Electrochemical tests were performed in a two-electrode cell that presented a specific capacitance of 34.37 F/g when considered the active mass and 97.9% of capacitance retention after 5000 charge/discharge cycles.
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.
Recent open-label trials show that psychedelics, such as ayahuasca, hold promise as fast-onset antidepressants in treatment-resistant depression.
To test the antidepressant effects of ayahuasca, we conducted a parallel-arm, double-blind randomized placebo-controlled trial in 29 patients with treatment-resistant depression. Patients received a single dose of either ayahuasca or placebo. We assessed changes in depression severity with the Montgomery-Åsberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS) and the Hamilton Depression Rating scale at baseline, and at 1 (D1), 2 (D2), and 7 (D7) days after dosing.
We observed significant antidepressant effects of ayahuasca when compared with placebo at all-time points. MADRS scores were significantly lower in the ayahuasca group compared with placebo at D1 and D2 (p = 0.04), and at D7 (p < 0.0001). Between-group effect sizes increased from D1 to D7 (D1: Cohen's d = 0.84; D2: Cohen's d = 0.84; D7: Cohen's d = 1.49). Response rates were high for both groups at D1 and D2, and significantly higher in the ayahuasca group at D7 (64% v. 27%; p = 0.04). Remission rate showed a trend toward significance at D7 (36% v. 7%, p = 0.054).
To our knowledge, this is the first controlled trial to test a psychedelic substance in treatment-resistant depression. Overall, this study brings new evidence supporting the safety and therapeutic value of ayahuasca, dosed within an appropriate setting, to help treat depression. This study is registered at http://clinicaltrials.gov (NCT02914769).
Human papillomavirus (HPV) testing is used in the triage of women with a borderline smear result. The efficiency of testing women with a low-grade squamous intraepithelial lesion (LSIL) and atypical squamous cells of undetermined significance (ASCUS) is less clear. For this reason we used a new HPV test that detects E6/E7 messenger RNA (mRNA), which might have a higher specificity. The objective of this prospective study was to assess whether HPV E6/E7 mRNA positivity in women with ASCUS and LSIL at baseline, is able to predict those women who have a high risk of developing a histological cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN2) or worse lesion. We took into consideration the women's age and HPV DNA genotype and followed them up for 3 years. Cervical samples from women with high-risk HPV (HR-HPV) DNA-positive ASCUS (n = 90) or LSIL (n = 222) were tested for the presence of HR-HPV E6/E7 mRNA and the women were monitored for the development of histopathologically verified CIN2+. Thirteen patients with ASCUS and 17 with LSIL did not complete follow-up. All patients with LSIL and ASCUS, enrolled in this study, had confirmed lesions at the colposcopic examination. Follow-up was available for 312 women, 193 were positive in the HR-HPV DNA test and 93 had a HPV E6/E7 mRNA positive test. Finally, 22 women positive in the HPV DNA test for high-risk genotypes and with positive E6/E7 mRNA had a histologically confirmed CIN2+. Only two cases with negative HPV E6/E7 mRNA had CIN2+. The study shows that women positive in the HPV E6/E7 mRNA test have a greater risk of malignant progression of cervical lesions and therefore deserve greater attention and earlier check-ups.
New routes in additive devices fabrication techniques and advances in printable materials are required to meet the ever increasing demands for low-cost and large-area flexible electronics. In particular, perovskite-based materials have gained an appeal due to their unique optoelectronics and ferroelectrics properties, which may replace p-n junction in semiconductor devices. Metal-organic methylammonium lead trihalide perovskite formulations have been extensively studied in the last few years as promising materials for use in printed electronics, which do not require high temperatures or vacuum environment, contrary to conventional semiconductor fabrication techniques. In this work, digital inkjet-printing in ambient atmosphere is proposed as a deposition pathway for the fabrication of perovskite active layers in photodetector and thin-film photovoltaic device architectures. The device architecture containing a printed perovskite active layer sandwiched between TiO2 and Spiro-OMeTAD as electron and hole transport layers, respectively, as well as layer-on-layer fabrication and responsivity spectra of the perovskite-based device are presented.
The GALILEO telescope requires a flexible detector controller that allows one to drive single and mosaic CCDs in different modes of operation. The CCD controller can be divided into two main parts: the preamplifier, located close to the cryostat and the other modules, the Sequencer, the Bias generator, the Clock driver, the Preamplifier and the Correlated double sampler, located into a rack and connected together via a CCDC-BUS.
In vitro electrophysiology using microelectrode arrays (MEAs) plays an important role in understanding fundamental biologic processes, screening potential drugs and assessing the toxicity of chemicals. Low electrode impedance and ability to sustain viable cultures are the key technology requirements. We show that MEAs consisting of poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene) doped with poly(styrene sulfonate) (PEDOT:PSS) and coated with poly-L-lysine satisfy these requirements. Hippocampal cell cultures, maintained for 3–6 weeks on these MEAs, give high quality recordings of neural activity. This enables the observation of drug-induced activity changes, which paves the way for using these devices in in vitro drug screening and toxicology applications.
Lutein, a fat-soluble carotenoid with antioxidant properties, may have an effect on respiratory health. However, the evidence is inconsistent. We aimed to cross-sectionally investigate the association between lutein intake and lung function by measuring forced expiratory volume in 1 s (FEV1), forced vital capacity (FVC) and FEV1/FVC% in adults (aged 45–79 years). We included 4402 participants from the Rotterdam Study, a prospective cohort study in The Netherlands. Lutein intake was assessed using a validated FFQ. Lung function was assessed using spirometry around the same time point as the dietary assessment. No independent association was found between lutein intake and FEV1 (−12·17 (95 % CI −34·21, 9·87) ml per sd increase in lutein) after adjustment for age, sex, height, cohort effect, ethnicity, education, weight, total daily energy intake, smoking status, physical activity, and intakes of fatty acids, dietary fibre, alcohol, β-carotene, β-crypotoxanthin, lycopene and zeaxanthin. There was also no association between lutein and FVC or FEV1/FVC%. However, after stratification by smoking status, lutein intake was significantly associated with lower FEV1/FVC% in current smokers (−1·69 (95 % CI −2·93, −0·45) % per sd increase of lutein) independent of other carotenoids. The present study does not support an independent association between lutein intake and lung function in adults. However, future studies should focus on the potential inverse association between high lutein intake and lung function in specific risk groups such as smokers.
We are here to honour a dear friend and a great mentor. Among many other things, he has taught us respect: respect for the world we are studying, for doubt, for friendship. We are therefore glad of this opportunity to dedicate to him this short synthesis of a study that has engrossed our team for many years now.
The archaeological context of the fictile tablets found at the archaeological site of Penteskouphia, along the Phliasian road at the rear of Acrocorinth, still resists attempts at interpretation. The special interest of this context lies in the fact that it provides lavish evidence for the work of potters. All stages of the work cycle are documented: the extraction of clay from the quarry, the shaping of the vase on the turning wheel, the work at the kiln, from fuelling to watching over the vases in the crucial stages of firing, the finishing and decoration of the vases in the workshop, the loading of the vases onto ships and their transportation by sea.
The complexity of this corpus and the variety of its style, which often stoops to depicting the physical degradation of the craftsman with extreme crudeness, have overshadowed issues related to the nature and characteristics of its archaeological context. When one skims the existing bibliography, one almost gets the impression that the communis opinio is that the tablets are a heterogeneous ensemble of images, in which no unified ‘programme’ can be discerned. We suspect that this impasse is due to the fact that the attention of scholars has been monopolised by the more captivating subject of the tablets themselves. Even scholars who have investigated other aspects of the corpus, whose complexity actually goes beyond the mere depiction of craftsmen, have focused only on individual subjects, as did Geagan (1970), who only examined mythological themes, without relating them to their context.
About the discovery of the pinakes in 1905, we only know that they were lying in two small ravines on the west slope of the Penteskouphia Hill; in this difficult situation, determined by the total lack of information on the structure of the ancient site, useful indications can be drawn from the fact that many pinakes are decorated on both faces with different themes, and that these sometimes combine to form a single image.
To this date ψ Per is the only classical Be star that was angularly resolved in radio (by the VLA at λ = 2 cm). Gaussian fit to the azimuthally averaged visibility data indicates a disk size (FWHM) of ~500 stellar radii (Dougherty & Taylor 1992). Recently, we obtained new multi-band cm flux density measurements of ψ Per from the enhanced VLA. We modeled the observed spectral energy distribution (SED) covering the interval from ultraviolet to radio using the Monte Carlo radiative transfer code HDUST (Carciofi & Bjorkman 2006). An SED turndown, that occurs between far-IR and radio wavelengths, is explained by a truncated viscous decretion disk (VDD), although the shallow slope of the radio SED suggests that the disk is not simply cut off, as is assumed in our model. The best-fit size of a truncated disk derived from the modeling of the radio SED is 100+5−15 stellar radii, which is in striking contrast with the result of Dougherty & Taylor (1992). The reasons for this discrepancy are under investigation.
The collective response of electrons in an ultrathin foil target irradiated by an ultraintense (
) laser pulse is investigated experimentally and via 3D particle-in-cell simulations. It is shown that if the target is sufficiently thin that the laser induces significant radiation pressure, but not thin enough to become relativistically transparent to the laser light, the resulting relativistic electron beam is elliptical, with the major axis of the ellipse directed along the laser polarization axis. When the target thickness is decreased such that it becomes relativistically transparent early in the interaction with the laser pulse, diffraction of the transmitted laser light occurs through a so called ‘relativistic plasma aperture’, inducing structure in the spatial-intensity profile of the beam of energetic electrons. It is shown that the electron beam profile can be modified by variation of the target thickness and degree of ellipticity in the laser polarization.
In 1988, Fairbanks conducted a drilling expedition off the south coast of Barbados to recover submerged corals contemporaneous with the last deglaciation. Core recovery was excellent and >30 different samples were dated by conventional β-counting techniques (Fairbanks 1989). At about the same time, we developed, at Lamont, the thermal ionization mass spectrometry (TIMS) technique to obtain precise U-Th ages (Edwards 1988), and to compare them with the 14C estimates measured on the same samples. A surprising result was that the discrepancy between 14C and U-Th ages increased through time to ca. 3000–3500 yr at ca. 15,000 14C BP (Bard et al. 1990a). Because the three youngest samples yielded U-Th ages in agreement with their calibrated 14C ages, we concluded initially that the TIMS U-Th determinations were not only precise, but also accurate, and that the 14C vs. U-Th data set could be used for a first-order 14C calibration.
On 5 February 2016, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (hereinafter, NOAA),within the United States (hereinafter, US) Department of Commerce, published a Proposed Rule to create a seafood traceability programme. The programme intends to combat illegal, unreported and unregulated (hereinafter, IUU) fishing, prevent fraudulent trade and to serve as the contribution of the US to the global action to combat IUU fishing, along the lines of other similar regulatory frameworks, such as the EU's extensive regulationon IUU fishing. However, despite the legitimate objectives of the measure, it is imperative that regulators take into account the potential consequences for international trade when designing such programmes.
Bipolar disorder is a highly heritable polygenic disorder. Recent
enrichment analyses suggest that there may be true risk variants for
bipolar disorder in the expression quantitative trait loci (eQTL) in the
We sought to assess the impact of eQTL variants on bipolar disorder risk
by combining data from both bipolar disorder genome-wide association
studies (GWAS) and brain eQTL.
To detect single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) that influence
expression levels of genes associated with bipolar disorder, we jointly
analysed data from a bipolar disorder GWAS (7481 cases and 9250 controls)
and a genome-wide brain (cortical) eQTL (193 healthy controls) using a
Bayesian statistical method, with independent follow-up replications. The
identified risk SNP was then further tested for association with
hippocampal volume (n = 5775) and cognitive performance
(n = 342) among healthy individuals.
Integrative analysis revealed a significant association between a brain
eQTL rs6088662 on chromosome 20q11.22 and bipolar disorder (log Bayes
factor = 5.48; bipolar disorder P =
5.85×10–5). Follow-up studies across multiple independent
samples confirmed the association of the risk SNP (rs6088662) with gene
expression and bipolar disorder susceptibility (P =
3.54×10–8). Further exploratory analysis revealed that
rs6088662 is also associated with hippocampal volume and cognitive
performance in healthy individuals.
Our findings suggest that 20q11.22 is likely a risk region for bipolar
disorder; they also highlight the informative value of integrating
functional annotation of genetic variants for gene expression in
advancing our understanding of the biological basis underlying complex
disorders, such as bipolar disorder.