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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.
Increasing evidence indicates that gut microbiota may influence colorectal cancer risk. Diet, particularly fibre intake, may modify gut microbiota composition, which may affect cancer risk. We investigated the relationship between dietary fibre intake and gut microbiota in adults. Using 16S rRNA gene sequencing, we assessed gut microbiota in faecal samples from 151 adults in two independent study populations: National Cancer Institute (NCI), n 75, and New York University (NYU), n 76. We calculated energy-adjusted fibre intake based on FFQ. For each study population with adjustment for age, sex, race, BMI and smoking, we evaluated the relationship between fibre intake and gut microbiota community composition and taxon abundance. Total fibre intake was significantly associated with overall microbial community composition in NYU (P=0·008) but not in NCI (P=0·81). In a meta-analysis of both study populations, higher fibre intake tended to be associated with genera of class Clostridia, including higher abundance of SMB53 (fold change (FC)=1·04, P=0·04), Lachnospira (FC=1·03, P=0·05) and Faecalibacterium (FC=1·03, P=0·06), and lower abundance of Actinomyces (FC=0·95, P=0·002), Odoribacter (FC=0·95, P=0·03) and Oscillospira (FC=0·96, P=0·06). A species-level meta-analysis showed that higher fibre intake was marginally associated with greater abundance of Faecalibacterium prausnitzii (FC=1·03, P=0·07) and lower abundance of Eubacterium dolichum (FC=0·96, P=0·04) and Bacteroides uniformis (FC=0·97, P=0·05). Thus, dietary fibre intake may impact gut microbiota composition, particularly class Clostridia, and may favour putatively beneficial bacteria such as F. prausnitzii. These findings warrant further understanding of diet–microbiota relationships for future development of colorectal cancer prevention strategies.
Informal (unpaid) care-givers of older people with dementia experience stress and isolation, causing physical and psychiatric morbidity. Comprehensive geriatric assessment clinics represent an important geriatrician-led model of dementia care. Our qualitative study examined the educational and support needs of care-givers of people diagnosed with dementia at a geriatric assessment clinic, resources used to address those needs and challenges experienced in doing so. We conducted structured thematic analysis of interviews with 18 informal care-givers. Participants’ narratives reflected four themes. First, care-givers sought information from varied sources, including the Alzheimer Society, the internet and clinic staff. Responsive behaviours, the expected progression of dementia and system navigation were topics of particular interest. Second, care-givers obtained assistance from public, for-profit and voluntary sources. Third, care-givers received little assistance. Two-thirds received fewer than four hours of help weekly from all sources combined, and none more than 15. Several received no assistance whatsoever. Publicly funded support workers’ tasks, and their timing, were often unhelpful. Finally, while numerous care-givers felt physical and emotional strain, and worried about how poor health impaired their care-giving, many hesitated to seek help. The needs of this unique population of informal care-givers can be met by improved home-care service flexibility, and access to trustworthy information about the expected progression of dementia and skills for managing behavioural and psychological symptoms.
Illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing is a global problem, which threatens marine ecosystems in addition to putting food security and regional stability at risk. It is often linked to major human rights violations and even organized crime. Legal measures, such as introducing monitoring and surveillance systems or denying services to vessels engaged in IUU fishing, are often implemented at national and international levels to combat such practices. Academics and economists have suggested that IUU fishing might be discouraged equally well by taking the profit out of it. Building on this premise, this article analyzes the extent to which the availability of liability insurance contributes to the problem of IUU fishing. To this end, an empirical study has been carried out, which supports the contention that vessels suspected of involvement in IUU fishing have no serious difficulty in obtaining liability insurance from the market and insurance sector, thereby inadvertently facilitating IUU fishing. The authors conclude that to deter IUU fishing, access to insurance for those involved in it should be restricted. Some success can be achieved if certain steps are taken to improve the risk assessment procedures of underwriters. However, it is advocated that the most effective approach would be the reform of European Union or domestic legislation and putting providers of liability insurance under a clear positive obligation to refuse cover to those involved in IUU fishing.
We report on the EPICA Dronning Maud Land (East Antarctica) deep drilling operation. Starting with the scientific questions that led to the outline of the EPICA project, we introduce the setting of sister drillings at NorthGRIP and EPICA Dome C within the European ice-coring community. The progress of the drilling operation is described within the context of three parallel, deep-drilling operations, the problems that occurred and the solutions we developed. Modified procedures are described, such as the monitoring of penetration rate via cable weight rather than motor torque, and modifications to the system (e.g. closing the openings at the lower end of the outer barrel to reduce the risk of immersing the drill in highly concentrated chip suspension). Parameters of the drilling (e.g. core-break force, cutter pitch, chips balance, liquid level, core production rate and piece number) are discussed. We also review the operational mode, particularly in the context of achieved core length and piece length, which have to be optimized for drilling efficiency and core quality respectively. We conclude with recommendations addressing the design of the chip-collection openings and strictly limiting the cable-load drop with respect to the load at the start of the run.
The Parkes pulsar data archive currently provides access to 144044 data files obtained from observations carried out at the Parkes observatory since the year 1991. Around 105 files are from surveys of the sky, the remainder are observations of 775 individual pulsars and their corresponding calibration signals. Survey observations are included from the Parkes 70 cm and the Swinburne Intermediate Latitude surveys. Individual pulsar observations are included from young pulsar timing projects, the Parkes Pulsar Timing Array and from the PULSE@Parkes outreach program. The data files and access methods are compatible with Virtual Observatory protocols. This paper describes the data currently stored in the archive and presents ways in which these data can be searched and downloaded.
This paper presents an approach for outdoor navigation of an autonomously guided canine using an embedded command module with vibration and tone generation capabilities and an embedded control suite comprised of a microprocessor, wireless radio, GPS receiver, and an Attitude and Heading Reference System. In order to determine the canine's motions, which inherently contain non-conventional noise characteristics, the sensor measurements were integrated using a specialized Extended Kalman Filter (EKF), equipped with a Fuzzy Logic controller for adaptive tuning of the Process Noise Covariance Matrix. This allowed for rejection of un-modelled canine motion characteristics which tend to corrupt accelerometer bias tracking in a standard EKF. The EKF solution provided an optimized estimate of the canine position and velocity and also proved to be effective in tracking the canine's position (within 7·5 m) and velocity (within 1·2 m/s) during simulated 10 second GPS outages.