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Schistosomiasis is a multifactorial disease that includes environmental, behavioral, parasitic, vector, and host factors. This study aimed to assess the protective effect of single and polyvalent antigens from cercarial antigen preparations (CAPs), soluble worm antigen preparations (SWAPs), and soluble egg antigens (SEAs) which were used as candidate vaccines in an experimental model of Schistosoma mansoni-infected mice. The efficiency of the antigens was tested by determining their effects on fecal egg count, egg viability analysis, and tissue egg counts. Histological and morphometric analyses of granulomas in liver and intestine tissues were performed. In the present study, all immunized groups showed a significant reduction in the average fecal egg count and tissue egg load compared with infected mice. The most substantial reduction in fecal egg count was observed in the combined vaccinated group (23.23 ± 3.2). The group vaccinated with CAP before infection showed the highest reduction in tissue egg load (liver and intestine: 85.22 and 91.70%, respectively). Immunized animals showed a highly significant reduction in the numbers of hepatic granulomas compared with the infected non-immunized group. In conclusion, combining these different antigens (CAP, SWAP, and SEA) augments the protective immunity compared with other immunized groups.
Currently, dengue control relies largely on reactive vector control programmes. Proactive vector-control using a rational, well-balanced integrated vector management approach may prove more successful for dengue control. As part of the development of a cluster randomized controlled epidemiological trial, a study was conducted in Johor Bahru, Malaysia. The study included one control site (three buildings) and three intervention sites which were treated as follows: targeted outdoor residual spraying only (TORS site, two buildings); deployment of autodissemination devices only (ADD site, four buildings); and the previous two treatments combined (TORS + ADD site, three buildings). The primary entomological measurement was per cent of positive ovitraps—ovitrap index (OI). The effect of each intervention on OI was analyzed by a modified ordinary least squares regression model. Relative to the control site, the TORS and ADD sites showed a reduction in the Aedes OI (−6.5%, P = 0.04 and −8.3%, P = 0.10, respectively). Analysis by species showed that, relative to control, the Ae. aegypti OI was lower in ADD (−8.9%, P = 0.03) and in TORS (−10.4%, P = 0.02). No such effect was evident in the TORS + ADD site. The present study provides insights into the methods to be used for the main trial. The combination of multiple insecticides with different modes of action in one package is innovative, although we could not demonstrate the additive effect of TORS + ADD. Further work is required to strengthen our understanding of how these interventions impact dengue vector populations and dengue transmission.
Studies on community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) and pneumococcal pneumonia (PP) related to the 13-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV13) introduction in Asia are scarce. This study aimed to investigate the epidemiological and microbiological determinants of hospitalised CAP and PP after PCV13 was introduced in Japan. This observational hospital-based surveillance study included children aged ⩽15 years, admitted to hospitals in and around Chiba City, Japan. Participants had bacterial pneumonia based on a positive blood or sputum culture for bacterial pathogens. Serotype and antibiotic-susceptibility testing of Streptococcus pneumoniae and Haemophilus influenzae isolates from patients with bacterial pneumonia were assessed. The CAP hospitalisation rate per 1000 child-years was 17.7, 14.3 and 9.7 in children aged <5 years and 1.18, 2.64 and 0.69 in children aged 5–15 years in 2008, 2012 and 2018, respectively. There was a 45% and 41% reduction in CAP hospitalisation rates, between the pre-PCV7 and PCV13 periods, respectively. Significant reductions occurred in the proportion of CAP due to PP and PCV13 serotypes. Conversely, no change occurred in the proportion of CAP caused by H. influenzae. The incidence of hospitalised CAP in children aged ⩽15 years was significantly reduced after the introduction of PCV13 in Japan. Continuous surveillance is necessary to detect emerging PP serotypes.
Competing theories on the aetiology of eating disorders originate from a diverse set of disciplines. One such discipline is Evolutionary Psychology which assumes that the human mind has been shaped by natural and sexual selection. Most evolutionary theories on eating disorders limit themselves to the causation of anorexia nervosa only. The Sexual Competition Hypothesis (SCH), based on the Darwinian theory of sexual selection, provides an explanatory framework for the whole spectrum of eating disorders. It contends that intense female intrasexual competition (ISC) is the ultimate cause of eating disorders. The SCH explains the phenomenon of the pursuit of thinness as an adaptation to ISC in the modern environment. It argues that eating disorders are pathological phenomena that arise from the mismatch between the modern environment and the inherited female adaptations for ISC.
To test predictions from a novel evolutionary hypothesis for eating disorders.
i) To examine the relationship between disordered eating behaviour (DEB) and ISC in a sample of female undergraduates.
ii) To establish whether there is any relationship between DEB and Life History (LH) strategy.
A group of 206 female undergraduates were recruited. A structural equation model was constructed to analyse the data.
ISC for mates was significantly associated with DEB, as predicted by the SCH. DEB was found to be predicted by fast LH strategy, which was only partially mediated by the SCH.
The results of this study are supportive of the SCH and justify research on a clinical sample.
A variety of hereditary spinocerebellar ataxia (SCA) develops a broad spectrum of both ataxia and non-ataxia symptoms. Cognitive and affective changes are one such non-ataxia symptoms, but have been described only in hereditary SCAs with exonic CAG gene expansion.
We newly found intronic hexanucleotide GGCCTG gene expansion in NOP56 gene as the causative mutation (=SCA36) in nine unrelated Japanese familial SCA originating from Asida river area in the western part of Japan, thus nicknamed Asidan for this mutation. These patients show unique clinical balance of cerebellar ataxia and motor neuron disease (MND), locating on the crossroad of these two diseases. We examined cognitive and affective analyses on 12 Asidan patients who agreed to join the examination.
The 12 Asidan patients demonstrated a significant decrease in their frontal executive functions measured by frontal assessment battery (FAB) and Montreal cognitive assessment (MoCA) compared with age- and gender-matched controls, whilst mini-mental state examination (MMSE) and Hasegawa dementia score-revised (HDS-R) were within normal range. the decline of frontal executive function was related to their disease duration and scale for the assessment and rating of ataxias (SARA). They also demonstrated mild depression and apathy. Single-photon emission tomography (SPECT) analysis showed that these Asidan patients showed decline of regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) in a particular areas of cerebral cortices such as Brodmann areas 24 and 44-46.
These data suggest the patients with Asidan mutation show unique cognitive and affective characteristics different from other hereditary SCAs with exonal CAG expansion or MND.
A new planar multiple-input–multiple-output (MIMO) antenna for ultra wideband (UWB) applications is presented. The proposed antenna operates over the frequency band from 3.1 to 10.6 GHz and it consists of two identical circular monopoles on an FR4 substrate. The wide isolation is achieved through a novel planar decoupling structure that is being inserted between the dual antennas. Moreover, a center slot is etched on the common ground to further increase isolation. The effectiveness of the decoupling structure is analyzed, and performance study has been performed to investigate the mutual coupling reduction. A good isolation of more than 31 dB has been achieved through the entire UWB band (more than 12 dB improvement over the reference antenna). The proposed UWB antenna with and without the wideband decoupling structure has been investigated and verified both numerically and experimentally. The measurement results of the proposed UWB–MIMO antenna are in good agreement with the simulation results. The proposed UWB antenna has been compared with previous works regarding antenna size, geometric complexity, bandwidth, and isolation level. The proposed antenna has some outstanding characteristics such as a geometric simplicity, compact size, broad bandwidth, and low correlation which give the antenna an excellent diversity performance and a good candidate for UWB applications.
We used a bivariate animal model to investigate the genetic correlations between yield traits or days open (DO) as characters measured in cows and semen production traits as characters measured in bulls. Lactation records of 305-day milk, fat, and protein yields, and DO, from 386 809 first-lactation Holstein cows in Hokkaido, Japan, that calved between 2008 and 2014 were used. Semen production records were collected between 2005 and 2014 and included volume per ejaculate (VOL), sperm concentration (CON), number of sperm per ejaculate (NUM), progressive motility index of sperm (MOT), and MOT after freeze-thawing (A-MOT). Number of sperm per ejaculate was log-transformed into a NUM score (NUMS). A total of 30 373 semen production records from 1196 bulls were obtained. The pedigree file used for analysing the records was involving 885 345 animals. Heritability was estimated for VOL (0.42), CON (0.12), NUMS (0.37), MOT (0.08), and A-MOT (0.11). Weak and negative genetic correlations were recorded between yield traits measured in cows and VOL, CON or NUMS measured in bulls. Moderate and negative genetic correlations were obtained between DO and MOT (–0.42) or A-MOT (–0.43). Selection focused on MOT or A-MOT measured in bulls may therefore improve DO measured in cows.
We report on the formation of shallow junctions with high activation in both n+/p and p+/n Ge junctions using ion implantation and Flash Lamp Annealing (FLA). The shallowest junction depths (Xj) formed for the n+/p and p+/n junctions were 7.6 nm and 6.1 nm with sheet resistances (Rs) of 860 ohms/sq. and 704 ohms/sq., respectively. By reducing knocked-on oxygen during ion implantation in the n+/p junctions, Rs was decreased by between 5% and 15%. The lowest Rs observed was 235 ohms/sq. with a junction depth of 21.5 nm. Hall measurements clearly revealed that knocked-on oxygen degraded phosphorus activation (carrier concentration). In the p+/n Ge junctions, we show that ion implantation damage induced high boron activation. Using this technique, Rs can be reduced from 475 ohms/sq. to 349 ohms/sq. These results indicate that the potential for forming ultra-shallow n+/p and p+/n junctions in the nanometer range in Ge devices using FLA is very high, leading to realistic monolithically-integrated Ge CMOS devices that can take us beyond Si technology.
Documenting past changes in the East Antarctic surface mass balance is important to improve ice core chronologies and to constrain the ice-sheet contribution to global mean sea-level change. Here we reconstruct past changes in the ratio of surface mass balance (SMB ratio) between the EPICA Dome C (EDC) and Dome Fuji (DF) East Antarctica ice core sites, based on a precise volcanic synchronization of the two ice cores and on corrections for the vertical thinning of layers. During the past 216 000 a, this SMB ratio, denoted SMBEDC/SMBDF, varied between 0.7 and 1.1, being small during cold periods and large during warm periods. Our results therefore reveal larger amplitudes of changes in SMB at EDC compared with DF, consistent with previous results showing larger amplitudes of changes in water stable isotopes and estimated surface temperature at EDC compared with DF. Within the last glacial inception (Marine Isotope Stages, MIS-5c and MIS-5d), the SMB ratio deviates by up to 0.2 from what is expected based on differences in water stable isotope records. Moreover, the SMB ratio is constant throughout the late parts of the current and last interglacial periods, despite contrasting isotopic trends.
In traditional transit timing variations (TTVs) analysis of multi-planetary systems, the individual TTVs are first derived from transit fitting and later modelled using n-body dynamic simulations to constrain planetary masses. We show that fitting simultaneously the transit light curves with the system dynamics (photo-dynamical model) increases the precision of the TTV measurements and helps constrain the system architecture. We exemplify the advantages of applying this photo-dynamical model to a multi-planetary system found in K2 data very close to 3:2 mean motion resonance, K2-19. In this case the period of the larger TTV variations (libration period) is much longer (>1.5 years) than the duration of the K2 observations (80 days). However, our method allows to detect the short period TTVs produced by the orbital conjunctions between the planets that in turn permits to uniquely characterise the system. Therefore, our method can be used to constrain the masses of near-resonant systems even when the full libration curve is not observed.
The transport equation for the mean turbulent energy dissipation rate
along the centreline of a fully developed channel flow is derived by applying the limit at small separations to the two-point budget equation. Since the ratio of the isotropic energy dissipation rate to the mean turbulent energy dissipation rate
is sufficiently close to 1 on the centreline, our main focus is on the isotropic form of the transport equation. It is found that the imbalance between the production of
due to vortex stretching and the destruction of
caused by the action of viscosity is governed by the diffusion of
by the wall-normal velocity fluctuation. This imbalance is intrinsically different from the advection-driven imbalance in decaying-type flows, such as grid turbulence, jets and wakes. In effect, the different types of imbalance represent different constraints on the relation between the skewness of the longitudinal velocity derivative
and the destruction coefficient
of enstrophy in different flows, thus resulting in non-universal approaches of
towards a constant value as the Taylor microscale Reynolds number,
, increases. For example, the approach is slower for the measured values of
along either the channel or pipe centreline than along the axis in the self-preserving region of a round jet. The data for
collected in different flows strongly suggest that, in each flow, the magnitude of
is bounded, the value being slightly larger than 0.5.
We investigated the relationships between conception rates (CRs) at first service in Japanese Holstein heifers (i.e. animals that had not yet had their first calf) and cows and their test-day (TD) milk yields. Data included records of artificial insemination (AI) for heifers and cows that had calved for the first time between 2000 and 2008 and their TD milk yields at 6 through 305 days in milk (DIM) from first through third lactations. CR was defined as a binary trait for which first AI was a failure or success. A threshold-linear animal model was applied to estimate genetic correlations between CRs of heifers or cows and TD milk yield at various lactation stages. Two-trait genetic analyses were performed for every combination of CR and TD milk yield by using the Bayesian method with Gibbs sampling. The posterior means of the heritabilities of CR were 0.031 for heifers, 0.034 for first-lactation cows and 0.028 for second-lactation cows. Heritabilities for TD milk yield increased from 0.324 to 0.433 with increasing DIM but decreased slightly after 210 DIM during first lactation. These heritabilities from the second and third lactations were higher during late stages of lactation than during early stages. Posterior means of the genetic correlations between heifer CR and all TD yields were positive (range, 0.082 to 0.287), but those between CR of cows and milk yields during first or second lactation were negative (range, −0.121 to −0.250). Therefore, during every stage of lactation, selection in the direction of increasing milk yield may reduce CR in cows. The genetic relationships between CR and lactation curve shape were quite weak, because the genetic correlations between CR and TD milk yield were constant during the lactation period.
Ten ice-sheet models are used to study sensitivity of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets to prescribed changes of surface mass balance, sub-ice-shelf melting and basal sliding. Results exhibit a large range in projected contributions to sea-level change. In most cases, the ice volume above flotation lost is linearly dependent on the strength of the forcing. Combinations of forcings can be closely approximated by linearly summing the contributions from single forcing experiments, suggesting that nonlinear feedbacks are modest. Our models indicate that Greenland is more sensitive than Antarctica to likely atmospheric changes in temperature and precipitation, while Antarctica is more sensitive to increased ice-shelf basal melting. An experiment approximating the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s RCP8.5 scenario produces additional first-century contributions to sea level of 22.3 and 8.1 cm from Greenland and Antarctica, respectively, with a range among models of 62 and 14 cm, respectively. By 200 years, projections increase to 53.2 and 26.7 cm, respectively, with ranges of 79 and 43 cm. Linear interpolation of the sensitivity results closely approximates these projections, revealing the relative contributions of the individual forcings on the combined volume change and suggesting that total ice-sheet response to complicated forcings over 200 years can be linearized.
SPHERE, the Spectro-Polarimetric High-contrast Exoplanet REsearch instrument for the VLT
is optimized towards reaching the highest contrast in a limited field of view and at short
distances from the central star, thanks to an extreme AO system. SPHERE is very well
suited to study the close environment of Betelgeuse, and has a strong potential for
detecting the ejection activity around this key red supergiant.
We have prepared 2% Al doped ZnO (AZO) thin films on SrTiO3 and Al2O3 substrates by Pulsed Laser Deposition (PLD) technique at various deposition temperatures (Tdep = 300 °C – 600 °C). Transport and thermoelectric properties of AZO thin films were studied in low temperature range (300 K - 600 K). AZO/STO films present superior performance respect to AZO/Al2O3 films deposited at the same temperature, except for films deposited at 400 °C. Best film is the fully c-axis oriented AZO/STO deposited at 300 °C, with electrical conductivity 310 S/cm, Seebeck coefficient -65 μV/K and power factor 0.13 × 10-3 Wm-1K-2 at 300 K. Its performance increases with temperature. For instance, power factor is enhanced up to × 10-3 Wm-1K-2 at 600 K, surpassing the best AZO film previously reported in literature.
ASTEP (Antarctic Search for Transiting Exo Planets) is a research program funded mainly by French ANR grants and by the French Polar Institute (IPEV), dedicated to the photometric study of exoplanetary transits from Antarctica.
The preliminary “pathfinder” instrument ASTEP–South is described in another communication (Crouzet et al., these proceedings), and we focus in this presentation on the main instrument of the ASTEP program: “ASTEP–400”, a 40 cm robotized and thermally-controlled photometric telescope operated from the French-Italian Concordia station (Dome C, Antarctica).
ASTEP–400 has been installed at Concordia during the 2009-2010 summer campaign. Since, the telescope has been operated in nominal conditions during 2010 and 2011 winters, and the 2012 winterover is presently in progress. Data from the first two winter campaigns are available and processed. We give a description of the ASTEP–400 telescope from the mechanical, optical and thermal point of view. Control and software issues are also addressed. We end with a discussion of some astronomical results obtained with ASTEP–400.
We report formation of thin silicon oxide films on the silicon surfaces by combination of oxygen radical and high pressure H2O vapor heat treatment for passivation of silicon surfaces at a low temperature. Oxygen plasma was generated by 13.56 MHz radio frequency induction-coupled remote plasma with mixed gases of O2 and Ar at 2 sccm, 2x10-2 Pa and at a power of 50 W. Oxygen radical was produced from the plasma via a metal mesh closing plasma in the reactor. The top surfaces of 20 Wcm n-type silicon substrates with the rear surface coated by thermally grown SiO2 layers were exposed by oxygen radical from 1 to 5 min to oxidize the silicon surface. The samples were subsequently annealed with 9.0x105 Pa H2O vapor heat treatment at 260oC for 3 h. The effective minority carrier lifetime estimated using photo-induced carrier microwave absorption system in the case of 635 nm light illumination at 1.5 mW/cm2 to the top surface increased from 1.3x10-4 to 5.1x10-4s as the oxygen radical treatment duration increased from 1 to 5 min. The recombination velocity decreased from 380 to 90 cm/s. 500 kHz capacitance response with bias gate voltages characteristics of metal oxide semiconductor structure resulted in the effective oxide thicknesses (EOT) ranging from 1.3 to 1.7 nm. These results indicate a capability of thin oxide formation and effective passivation of silicon surfaces at a low temperature.