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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.
Positive symptoms are a useful predictor of aggression in schizophrenia. Although a similar pattern of abnormal brain structures related to both positive symptoms and aggression has been reported, this observation has not yet been confirmed in a single sample.
To study the association between positive symptoms and aggression in schizophrenia on a neurobiological level, a prospective meta-analytic approach was employed to analyze harmonized structural neuroimaging data from 10 research centers worldwide. We analyzed brain MRI scans from 902 individuals with a primary diagnosis of schizophrenia and 952 healthy controls.
The result identified a widespread cortical thickness reduction in schizophrenia compared to their controls. Two separate meta-regression analyses revealed that a common pattern of reduced cortical gray matter thickness within the left lateral temporal lobe and right midcingulate cortex was significantly associated with both positive symptoms and aggression.
These findings suggested that positive symptoms such as formal thought disorder and auditory misperception, combined with cognitive impairments reflecting difficulties in deploying an adaptive control toward perceived threats, could escalate the likelihood of aggression in schizophrenia.
The indications for expanded endoscopic transnasal approaches continue to increase, with more complex skull base defects needing to be repaired. This study reviews the management of large anterior skull base defects with opening of the sellar diaphragm.
A prospective analysis of endonasal endoscopic surgery carried out at Son Espases University Hospital between January 2013 and December 2018 was performed. The analysis included only the cases with a significative intra-operative cerebrospinal fluid leak. In all cases, reconstruction was performed by combining the gasket seal technique with a pedicled mucosal endonasal flap.
Twenty-eight patients were included. The mucoperiosteal nasoseptal flap, the lateral wall flap and the middle turbinate flap were used in 13, 8 and 7 patients, respectively, combined with the gasket seal technique. One case of post-operative cerebrospinal fluid leak was observed (3.57 per cent).
The combination of a gasket seal with an endonasal mucosal flap is an excellent technique for repairing large anterior skull base defects.
In this paper, a robust geometric navigation algorithm, designed on the special Euclidean group SE(3), of a quadrotor is proposed. The equations of motion for the quadrotor are obtained using the Newton–Euler formulation. The geometric navigation considers a guidance frame which is designed to perform autonomous flights with a convergence to the contour of the task with small normal velocity. For this purpose, a super twisting algorithm controls the nonlinear rotational and translational dynamics as a cascade structure in order to establish the fast and yet smooth tracking with the typical robustness of sliding modes. In this sense, the controller provides robustness against parameter uncertainty, disturbances, convergence to the sliding manifold in finite time, and asymptotic convergence of the trajectory tracking. The algorithm validation is presented through experimental results showing the feasibility of the proposed approach and illustrating that the tracking errors converge asymptotically to the origin.
Space Infrared Telescope for Cosmology and Astrophysics (SPICA), the cryogenic infrared space telescope recently pre-selected for a ‘Phase A’ concept study as one of the three remaining candidates for European Space Agency (ESA's) fifth medium class (M5) mission, is foreseen to include a far-infrared polarimetric imager [SPICA-POL, now called B-fields with BOlometers and Polarizers (B-BOP)], which would offer a unique opportunity to resolve major issues in our understanding of the nearby, cold magnetised Universe. This paper presents an overview of the main science drivers for B-BOP, including high dynamic range polarimetric imaging of the cold interstellar medium (ISM) in both our Milky Way and nearby galaxies. Thanks to a cooled telescope, B-BOP will deliver wide-field 100–350
m images of linearly polarised dust emission in Stokes Q and U with a resolution, signal-to-noise ratio, and both intensity and spatial dynamic ranges comparable to those achieved by Herschel images of the cold ISM in total intensity (Stokes I). The B-BOP 200
m images will also have a factor
30 higher resolution than Planck polarisation data. This will make B-BOP a unique tool for characterising the statistical properties of the magnetised ISM and probing the role of magnetic fields in the formation and evolution of the interstellar web of dusty molecular filaments giving birth to most stars in our Galaxy. B-BOP will also be a powerful instrument for studying the magnetism of nearby galaxies and testing Galactic dynamo models, constraining the physics of dust grain alignment, informing the problem of the interaction of cosmic rays with molecular clouds, tracing magnetic fields in the inner layers of protoplanetary disks, and monitoring accretion bursts in embedded protostars.
All livestock animal species harbour complex microbial communities throughout their digestive tract that support vital biochemical processes, thus sustaining health and productivity. In part as a consequence of the strong and ancient alliance between the host and its associated microbes, the gut microbiota is also closely related to productivity traits such as feed efficiency. This phenomenon can help researchers and producers develop new and more effective microbiome-based interventions using probiotics, also known as direct-fed microbials (DFMs), in Animal Science. Here, we focus on one type of such beneficial microorganisms, the yeast Saccharomyces. Saccharomyces is one of the most widely used microorganisms as a DFM in livestock operations. Numerous studies have investigated the effects of dietary supplementation with different species, strains and doses of Saccharomyces (mostly Saccharomyces cerevisiae) on gut microbial ecology, health, nutrition and productivity traits of several livestock species. However, the possible existence of Saccharomyces which are indigenous to the animals’ digestive tract has received little attention and has never been the subject of a review. We for the first time provide a comprehensive review, with the objective of shedding light into the possible existence of indigenous Saccharomyces of the digestive tract of livestock. Saccharomyces cerevisiae is a nomadic yeast able to survive in a broad range of environments including soil, grass and silages. Therefore, it is very likely that cattle and other animals have been in direct contact with this and other types of Saccharomyces throughout their entire existence. However, to date, the majority of animal scientists seem to agree that the presence of Saccharomyces in any section of the gut only reflects dietary contamination; in other words, these are foreign organisms that are only transiently present in the gut. Importantly, this belief (i.e. that Saccharomyces come solely from the diet) is often not well grounded and does not necessarily hold for all the many other groups of microbes in the gut. In addition to summarizing the current body of literature involving Saccharomyces in the digestive tract, we discuss whether the beneficial effects associated with the consumption of Saccharomyces may be related to its foreign origin, though this concept may not necessarily satisfy the theories that have been proposed to explain probiotic efficacy in vivo. This novel review may prove useful for biomedical scientists and others wishing to improve health and productivity using Saccharomyces and other beneficial microorganisms.
Facial transplantation is emerging as a therapeutic option for self-inflicted gunshot wounds. The self-inflicted nature of this injury raises questions about the appropriate role of self-harm in determining patient eligibility. Potential candidates for facial transplantation undergo extensive psychosocial screening. The presence of a self-inflicted gunshot wound warrants special attention to ensure that a patient is prepared to undergo a demanding procedure that poses significant risk, as well as stringent lifelong management. Herein, we explore the ethics of considering mechanism of injury in the patient selection process, referring to the precedent set forth in solid organ transplantation. We also consider the available evidence regarding outcomes of individuals transplanted for self-inflicted mechanisms of injury in both solid organ and facial transplantation. We conclude that while the presence of a self-inflicted gunshot wound is significant in the overall evaluation of the candidate, it does not on its own warrant exclusion from consideration for a facial transplantation.
The enrichment of meat with selenium is important to improve the intake of selenium by humans. The effects of supranutritional doses of sodium selenite or selenium-enriched yeast on performance, carcass characteristics and meat quality were evaluated using 63 Nellore cattle in a completely randomized design with two sources (sodium selenite and selenium-enriched yeast), three levels (0.3, 0.9 and 2.7 mg Se/kg DM) and control treatment (without addition of selenium). Final body weight (BW), average daily gain, dry matter intake and gain to feed ratio (G : F) at the end of 84 days of supplementation were not influenced by treatments (P>0.05). Values of pH, ribeye area, back fat thickness and marbling score were also not influenced by treatments (
P>0.05). Dressing percentage was greater (P=0.02) in Nellore cattle supplemented with organic Se (58.70%) compared to animals supplemented with inorganic Se (57.94%). Hot carcass weight increased (
P=0.05) with the increasing of Se levels in the diet. Colour, shear force (SF), cooking and drip loss remained unchanged (
P>0.05); however thiobarbituric acid reactive substances was 15.51% higher with inorganic Se compared with organic Se. The selenium concentration in the meat of animals receiving organic selenium was higher (
P<0.001) than that of animals receiving sodium selenite, at all levels (0.3; 0.9 and 2.7 mg/kg DM). The meat of animals receiving 2.7 mg of organic Se/kg of DM presented concentration of 372.7 μg Se/kg in the L.dorsi muscle, and the intake of 150 g of this meat by humans provides approximately 100% of the recommended Se intake (55 μg Se/day for adults). Therefore, the use of supranutritional doses of 2.7 mg Se/kg of DM, regardless of source, is a way of naturally producing selenium-enriched meat without compromising performance, carcass characteristics and quality of Nellore bovine meat.
We studied the genetic diversity and the population structure of human isolates of Histoplasma capsulatum, the causative agent of histoplasmosis, using a randomly amplified polymorphic DNA-polymerase chain reaction (RAPD-PCR) assay to identify associations with the geographic distribution of isolates from Mexico, Guatemala, Colombia and Argentina. The RAPD-PCR pattern analyses revealed the genetic diversity by estimating the percentage of polymorphic loci, effective number of alleles, Shannon's index and heterozygosity. Population structure was identified by the index of association (IA) test. Thirty-seven isolates were studied and clustered into three groups by the unweighted pair-group method with arithmetic mean (UPGMA). Group I contained five subgroups based on geographic origin. The consistency of the UPGMA dendrogram was estimated by the cophenetic correlation coefficient (CCCr = 0.94, P = 0.001). Isolates from Mexico and Colombia presented higher genetic diversity than isolates from Argentina. Isolates from Guatemala grouped together with the reference strains from the United States of America and Panama. The IA values suggest the presence of a clonal population structure in the Argentinian H. capsulatum isolates and also validate the presence of recombining populations in the Colombian and Mexican isolates. These data contribute to the knowledge on the molecular epidemiology of histoplasmosis in Latin America.
Real time observations of the YBa2Cu3O7-δ (123) melting process by high temperature XRD and optical microscopy reveal a reaction sequence which does not correspond well with the literature. CO2 gas, present in the air, reacts with 123 to produce the Y2CU2O5 phase. This reaction begins well below 800°C and persists up to 970°C when BaCuO2 begins to form. The previously unreported BaCuO2 reaction occurs in either air or oxygen and this phase grows at the expense of the 123 until both rapidly disappear at 1050°C with the appearance of Y2B2CuO5 (211), Formation of Y2O3 from the 211 melt occurs more slowly, beginning at 1150°C. Dynamic 00ℓ orientation has been observed at 950°C upon cooling from the melt. The orientationa) growth is believed to be a surface tension dependent, liquid assisted sintering reaction.
This work reports by the first time a method to control the geometry of Ga2O3 films nanocrystallites at 350 °C. The formation of controlled shaped nano-crystallites of γ-Ga2O3 from amorphous Ga2O3 films grown by RF-Sputtering at room temperature driven by nano-layers of group IB metals (Cu, Ag or Au) is studied. The reported results can be explained by the role of subsurface metal nano-layers and the non-equilibrium nature of the sputtering processes. To study the effects on the surface structure and their optical properties arrays of amorphous-Ga2O3/IB-metal/amorphous-Ga2O3 were annealed in dry N2 atmosphere at 350 °C by 50, 100 and 150 min. The experimental results can be explained by the evolution of the amorphous character of the films amorphous films towards the nanocrystalline γ-Ga2O3 phase driven by the metal nano-layer seed nature. As the annealing time was increased the transition from amorphous-Ga2O3 to the nanocrystalline γ-Ga2O3 phase was detected by X-ray diffraction analysis. The transition to the nanocrystalline γ-Ga2O3 is demonstrated by the formation of octahedral, triangle and ball shape nanocrystallites with sizes of ∼5 to 50 nm according to FE-SEM analysis. The influence of the metal nano-layer is clearly seen by the shift of the plasmon frequency resonance produced by the Ga2O3/IB-metal/Ga2O3 arrays in the region from 400 to 600 nm caused by the modification of the interface Ga2O3/IB-metal produced by the applied annealing stages.
Over the last decade, polymer composites reinforced with natural fibers gained interest, both from the academic world and from various industries. Due to the demanding needs for environmentally friendly composites, the automotive industry is now searching for biodegradable and renewable composite materials and products. There are a wide variety of different natural fibers which can be applied as reinforcement or fillers, showing potential as a replacement for inorganic fibers in automotive components. The fact that plastics are often economical to produce implies an advantage especially in very complex shapes, make them promising for obtaining composite materials, achieving short demolding times, as no chemical reaction is required. Moreover, polymers are used increasingly for stressed tribological components, whereby plastic parts replace metallic bearings, gear wheels or sliding elements. In this regard, the objective of this work was to produce composite materials based on natural fibers and to characterize the influence of the addition of different amounts of filler. To do so, composites of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) and peanut shells (PS), at different proportions (2, 4 6, 8 and 10% wt.), were prepared. The composites were produced by injection molding and molded into a particular tension test simple mold. Although the FTIR presented an increment on the O-H vibration and a band around 1600 cm-1, the HDPE structure did not present modification. The mechanical properties of the HDPE were affected with the inclusion of the fibers. The tensile performance of the HDPE decrease with the increment of the fibers inclusion whiles the elastic modulus increases. The sample with 2% of natural fibers presented the lowest wear rate (k) and coefficient of friction (µ).
Radiocarbon (14C) is a key radionuclide in the assessment of the safety of underground geological disposal facilities for radioactive wastes, and the understanding of the 14C behavior in stainless steel may lead to a re-evaluation of the near-surface repository for the disposal of wastes containing this radionuclide in high concentrations. To achieve this objective, leaching experiments were planned for two different scenarios. The first is where the leaching solution, NaOH solution of pH ca. 12 in aerobic conditions, simulates the expected conditions in a cement-based near-surface repository over long time periods. The other one uses an acid solution of 1M H3PO4, which has been proved as a high efficiency chemical removal agent of 14C in graphite. The development of both analytical methods and protocols to measure the release of 14C from the activated steel samples and the speciation in the aqueous and gaseous phase has been undertaken as part of the EC CAST (CArbon-14 Source Term) project. Analytical methods, suitable for identifying and quantifying low molecular weight organic molecules, comprise ion chromatography (IC) and gas chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry (GC-MS); they are described for aqueous and gaseous samples, respectively. In this paper the preparation of leaching experiments to measure the release of 14C and the results obtained are described.
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.
Measurements in the infrared wavelength domain allow direct assessment of the physical state and energy balance of cool matter in space, enabling the detailed study of the processes that govern the formation and evolution of stars and planetary systems in galaxies over cosmic time. Previous infrared missions revealed a great deal about the obscured Universe, but were hampered by limited sensitivity.
SPICA takes the next step in infrared observational capability by combining a large 2.5-meter diameter telescope, cooled to below 8 K, with instruments employing ultra-sensitive detectors. A combination of passive cooling and mechanical coolers will be used to cool both the telescope and the instruments. With mechanical coolers the mission lifetime is not limited by the supply of cryogen. With the combination of low telescope background and instruments with state-of-the-art detectors SPICA provides a huge advance on the capabilities of previous missions.
SPICA instruments offer spectral resolving power ranging from R ~50 through 11 000 in the 17–230 μm domain and R ~28.000 spectroscopy between 12 and 18 μm. SPICA will provide efficient 30–37 μm broad band mapping, and small field spectroscopic and polarimetric imaging at 100, 200 and 350 μm. SPICA will provide infrared spectroscopy with an unprecedented sensitivity of ~5 × 10−20 W m−2 (5σ/1 h)—over two orders of magnitude improvement over what earlier missions. This exceptional performance leap, will open entirely new domains in infrared astronomy; galaxy evolution and metal production over cosmic time, dust formation and evolution from very early epochs onwards, the formation history of planetary systems.
From a physiological-behavioral perspective, it has been shown that fish with a higher density of black eumelanin spots are more dominant, less sensitive to stress, have higher feed intake, better feed efficiency and therefore are larger in size. Thus, we hypothesized that genetic (co)variation between skin pigmentation patterns and growth exists and it is advantageous in rainbow trout. The objective of this study was to determine the genetic relationships between skin pigmentation patterns and BW in a breeding population of rainbow trout. We performed a genetic analysis of pigmentation traits including dorsal color (DC), lateral band (LB) intensity, amount of spotting above (SA) and below (SB) the lateral line, and BW at harvest (HW). Variance components were estimated using a multi-trait linear animal model fitted by restricted maximum likelihood. Estimated heritabilities were 0.08±0.02, 0.17±0.03, 0.44±0.04, 0.17±0.04 and 0.23±0.04 for DC, LB, SA, SB and HW, respectively. Genetic correlations between HW and skin color traits were 0.42±0.13, 0.32±0.14 and 0.25±0.11 for LB, SA and SB, respectively. These results indicate positive, but low to moderate genetic relationships between the amount of spotting and BW in rainbow trout. Thus, higher levels of spotting are genetically associated with better growth performance in this population.
In this work we have conducted a study on the radiative and spectroscopic properties of the radiative precursor and the post-shock region from experiments with radiative shocks in xenon performed at the Orion laser facility. The study is based on post-processing of radiation-hydrodynamics simulations of the experiment. In particular, we have analyzed the thermodynamic regime of the plasma, the charge state distributions, the monochromatic opacities and emissivities, and the specific intensities for plasma conditions of both regions. The study of the intensities is a useful tool to estimate ranges of electron temperatures present in the xenon plasma in these experiments and the analysis performed of the microscopic properties commented above helps to better understand the intensity spectra. Finally, a theoretical analysis of the possibility of the onset of isobaric thermal instabilities in the post-shock has been made, concluding that the instabilities obtained in the radiative-hydrodynamic simulations could be thermal ones due to strong radiative cooling.
Anti-retroviral therapy (ART) regimes for HIV are associated with raised levels of circulating triglycerides (TGs) in western populations. However, there are limited data on the impact of ART on cardiometabolic risk in sub-Saharan African (SSA) populations.
Pooled analyses of 14 studies comprising 21 023 individuals, on whom relevant cardiometabolic risk factors (including TG), HIV and ART status were assessed between 2003 and 2014, in SSA. The association between ART and raised TG (>2.3 mmol/L) was analysed using regression models.
Among 10 615 individuals, ART was associated with a two-fold higher probability of raised TG (RR 2.05, 95% CI 1.51–2.77, I2 = 45.2%). The associations between ART and raised blood pressure, glucose, HbA1c, and other lipids were inconsistent across studies.
Evidence from this study confirms the association of ART with raised TG in SSA populations. Given the possible causal effect of raised TG on cardiovascular disease (CVD), the evidence highlights the need for prospective studies to clarify the impact of long term ART on CVD outcomes in SSA.