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This poster presented results from a detailed analysis of observed and theoretical light-curves of classical Cepheid variables in the Galaxy and the Magellanic Clouds. The theoretical light-curves were based on non-linear convective hydrodynamical pulsation models; the observational data were taken from ongoing wide-field variability surveys. The variation which we found in theoretical and observed light-curve parameters as a function of period, wavelength and metallicity was used to constrain the input physics to the pulsation models, such as the mass–luminosity relations obeyed by Cepheid variables. We also accounted for the variation in the convective efficiency as entered into the stellar pulsation models and its impact on the theoretical amplitudes and Period-Luminosity relations for Cepheid variables.
This poster presented results from the Large Magellanic Cloud Near-Infrared Synoptic Survey (LMCNISS) for classical and Type II Cepheid variables that were identified in the Optical Gravitational Lensing Experiment (OGLE-III) catalogue. Multi-wavelength time-series data for classical Cepheid variables are used to study light-curve structures as a function of period and wavelength. We exploited a sample of ∼1400 classical and ∼80 Type II Cepheid variables to derive Period–Wesenheit relations that combine both optical and near-infrared data. The new Period–Luminosity and Wesenheit relations were used to estimate distances to several Local-Group galaxies (using classical Cepheids) and to Galactic globular clusters (using Type II Cepheids). By appealing to a statistical framework, we found that fundamental-mode classical Cepheid Period–Luminosity relations are non-linear around 10–18 days at optical and near-IR wavelengths. We also suggested that a non-linear relation provides a better constraint on the Cepheid Period–Luminosity relation in Type Ia Supernovæ host galaxies, though it has a negligible effect on the systematic uncertainties affecting the local measurement of the Hubble constant.
Adverse psychosocial working environments characterized by job strain (the combination of high demands and low control at work) are associated with an increased risk of depressive symptoms among employees, but evidence on clinically diagnosed depression is scarce. We examined job strain as a risk factor for clinical depression.
We identified published cohort studies from a systematic literature search in PubMed and PsycNET and obtained 14 cohort studies with unpublished individual-level data from the Individual-Participant-Data Meta-analysis in Working Populations (IPD-Work) Consortium. Summary estimates of the association were obtained using random-effects models. Individual-level data analyses were based on a pre-published study protocol.
We included six published studies with a total of 27 461 individuals and 914 incident cases of clinical depression. From unpublished datasets we included 120 221 individuals and 982 first episodes of hospital-treated clinical depression. Job strain was associated with an increased risk of clinical depression in both published [relative risk (RR) = 1.77, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.47–2.13] and unpublished datasets (RR = 1.27, 95% CI 1.04–1.55). Further individual participant analyses showed a similar association across sociodemographic subgroups and after excluding individuals with baseline somatic disease. The association was unchanged when excluding individuals with baseline depressive symptoms (RR = 1.25, 95% CI 0.94–1.65), but attenuated on adjustment for a continuous depressive symptoms score (RR = 1.03, 95% CI 0.81–1.32).
Job strain may precipitate clinical depression among employees. Future intervention studies should test whether job strain is a modifiable risk factor for depression.
Temporary confinement during parturition and early postpartum may provide an intermediary step preceding loose housing that offers improvement in sow and piglet welfare. Three experiments were conducted to investigate the implications of replacing farrowing crates (FCs) with an alternative housing system from 3 days postpartum until weaning. In each experiment sows farrowed in FCs and were randomly allocated at day 3 of lactation to either a FC or a pen with increased floor space (lactation pen (LP)) until weaning. In experiment 1, piglet growth and sow and piglet skin injuries were recorded for 32 sows and 128 focal piglets in these litters. Behaviour around nursing and piglet behavioural time budgets were also recorded for 24 of these litters (96 focal piglets for time budgets). In experiment 2, measures of skin injury and behavioural time budgets were conducted on 28 sows and 112 focal piglets. The behavioural response of sows to piglet vocalisation (maternal responsiveness test (MRT)) was also assessed. In experiment 3, piglet mortality from day 3 of lactation until weaning was recorded in 672 litters over 12 months. While housing did not affect piglet weight gain in experiment 1, or piglet skin injuries in experiments 1 or 2, sows in both experiments sustained more injuries in LP than FC (experiment 1, 2.9 v. 1.4; experiment 2, 2.5 v. 0.8 lesions/sow; P<0.05). Sow–piglet interactions were more frequent in LP than FC at days 11 and 18 postpartum in both experiment 1 (day 11, 1.4% v. 1.2%; day 18, 1.7% v. 1.0% of observations; P=0.05) and 2 (day 11, 1.0% v. 0.3%; and at day 18 were 1.0% v. 0.6% of observations; P<0.01), and LP sows were more responsive in the MRT in experiment 2 (2 v. 0 median number of tests in which sows react, P<0.01). In experiment 1 piglets played more (0.7% v. 0.3% of observations, P=0.05) and manipulated others less (0.3% v. 0.7% of observations, P=0.04) in LP, but more piglets missed nursing bouts (0.2 v. 0.1 piglets/bout, P<0.01) compared with FC. There was no effect of housing on piglet mortality from day 3 of lactation until weaning in experiment 3 (0.63 and 0.64 deaths/litter for LP and FC, respectively, P>0.05). Thus, housing sows and litters in LP from day 3 of lactation minimises piglet mortality while improving maternal behaviour in sows and social behaviour in piglets.
A possible role of the APC/beta-catenin pathway in the pathogenesis of sporadic juvenile nasopharyngeal angiofibroma has been suggested. This paper presents its current status and clinical association in our patients.
A prospective observational study was conducted at King George Medical University and Central Drug Research Institute, in Lucknow, India. Western blot analysis was undertaken in 16 cases to examine beta-catenin expression. The clinical details were recorded along with follow up observations, to determine associations.
Up-regulation of beta-catenin expression was seen in 69 per cent of cases. The clinical variables did not reveal significant differences between patients with extremes of expression (extreme under- vs over-expression). However, absent expression was shown exclusively in young adults aged over 18 years, while enhanced expression was associated with an altered facial profile.
Although a beta-catenin association was seen in a subset of our sporadic juvenile nasopharyngeal angiofibroma cases, its expression was not homogeneous. This is in contrast to the Western literature that suggests a universal (homogenous) enhanced expression in the majority. Hence, further research is required to better define its molecular cascade.
The evidence underpinning the developmental origins of health and disease (DOHaD) is overwhelming. As the emphasis shifts more towards interventions and the translational strategies for disease prevention, it is important to capitalize on collaboration and knowledge sharing to maximize opportunities for discovery and replication. DOHaD meetings are facilitating this interaction. However, strategies to perpetuate focussed discussions and collaborations around and between conferences are more likely to facilitate the development of DOHaD research. For this reason, the DOHaD Society of Australia and New Zealand (DOHaD ANZ) has initiated themed Working Groups, which convened at the 2014–2015 conferences. This report introduces the DOHaD ANZ Working Groups and summarizes their plans and activities. One of the first Working Groups to form was the ActEarly birth cohort group, which is moving towards more translational goals. Reflecting growing emphasis on the impact of early life biodiversity – even before birth – we also have a Working Group titled Infection, inflammation and the microbiome. We have several Working Groups exploring other major non-cancerous disease outcomes over the lifespan, including Brain, behaviour and development and Obesity, cardiovascular and metabolic health. The Epigenetics and Animal Models Working Groups cut across all these areas and seeks to ensure interaction between researchers. Finally, we have a group focussed on ‘Translation, policy and communication’ which focusses on how we can best take the evidence we produce into the community to effect change. By coordinating and perpetuating DOHaD discussions in this way we aim to enhance DOHaD research in our region.
Juvenile nasopharyngeal angiofibroma often presents with lateral extensions. In countries with limited resources, selection of a cost-effective and least morbid surgical approach for complete excision is challenging.
Sixty-three patients with juvenile nasopharyngeal angiofibroma, with lateral extensions, underwent transpalatal, transpalatal-circumaxillary (transpterygopalatine) or transpalatal-circumaxillary-sublabial approaches for resection. Clinico-radiological characteristics, tumour volume and intra-operative bleeding were recorded.
The transpalatal approach was suitable for extensions involving medial part of pterygopalatine fossa; transpalatal-circumaxillary for extensions involving complete pterygopalatine fossa, with or without partial infratemporal fossa; and transpalatal-circumaxillary-sublabial for extensions involving complete infratemporal fossa, even cheek or temporal fossa up to zygomatic arch. Haemorrhage was greatest with the transpalatal-circumaxillary-sublabial approach, followed by transpalatal approach and transpalatal-circumaxillary approach (1212, 950 and 777 ml respectively). Tumour size (volume) was greatest with the transpalatal-circumaxillary approach, followed by transpalatal-circumaxillary-sublabial approach and transpalatal approach (40, 34 and 29 mm3). There was recurrence in three cases and residual disease in two cases. Long-term morbidity included small palatal perforation (n = 1), trismus (n = 1) and atrophic rhinitis (n = 2).
These modified techniques, performed with endoscopic assistance under hypotensive anaesthesia, without embolisation, offer a superior option over other open procedures with regard to morbidity and recurrences.
Using images from the Hubble Space Telescope and Sloan Digital Sky Survey, we have computed both parametric and non-parametric measures, and examined the evolution in size, concentration, stellar mass, effective stellar mass density and asymmetry for a sample of 600 disc galaxies from z ~ 1 till z ~ 0. We find that disc galaxies have gained more than 50 per cent of their present stellar mass over the last 8 Gyr. Also, the increase in disc size is found to be peripheral. While the average total (Petrosian) radius almost doubles from z ~ 1 to z ~ 0, the average effective (half-light) radius undergoes a marginal increase in comparison. This indicates that galaxies grow more substantially in their outskirts, and is consistent with the inside-out growth picture. The substantial increase in mass and size indicates that accretion of external material has been a dominant mode of galaxy growth, where the circumgalactic environment plays a significant role.
Observational studies suggest an inverse association between total dairy product intake and diabetes risk. However, there is a lack of information on the relationship of specific dairy products with impaired glucose metabolism (IGM) and type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Individuals aged 40–75 years were recruited for the Maastricht Study. All the participants filled out a 253-food item FFQ, covering fifty specific dairy items that captured differences between full-fat, semi-skimmed and skimmed products, as well as fermented and non-fermented products. Glucose metabolism status was assessed by an oral glucose tolerance test, and participants were informed on their glucose metabolism status after returning the FFQ. Data of 2391 individuals were available to estimate OR (95 % CI) for IGM (n 470) and newly diagnosed (ND) T2DM (n 125), with adjustment for age, sex, BMI, physical activity, smoking status, education, energy intake and intakes of vegetables, fruits, meat and fish. For IGM, fully adjusted analyses revealed inverse associations, with OR comparing the highest with the lowest tertile of intake of 0·73 (95 % CI 0·55, 0·96) for skimmed products and 0·74 (95 % CI 0·54, 0·99) for fermented products. These dairy products were not associated with ND T2DM. In contrast, full-fat products were positively associated with ND T2DM (OR 2·01; 95 % CI 1·16, 3·47), whereas total dairy product intake was inversely associated with ND T2DM (OR 0·50; 95 % CI 0·26, 0·93). In conclusion, individuals with a high consumption of skimmed and fermented products had lower odds of having IGM, and individuals with a high consumption of total dairy products had lower odds of having ND T2DM. High intake of full-fat products was not related to IGM but was positively related to ND T2DM.
The surfaces of inorganic substrates containing hydroxyl groups can be adapted to a variety of physical and chemical requirements by reaction with cyclic azasilanes. The moderately-strained ring structure of cyclic azasilanes containing adjacent Si and N atoms, along with the high oxophilicity of silicon, enables the high reactivity towards available hydroxyl groups on all siliceous surfaces investigated, including amorphous silica and borosilicate glass. The reaction occurs quantitatively at room temperature, requires no catalyst and has no byproducts. This investigation looks specifically at the reaction kinetics by means of DRIFT spectroscopy and quantifies extent of reaction by TGA. The less sterically-hindered the Si–N bond, the faster the reaction occurs. In all cases, the reaction is essentially complete in less than one minute. This study provides the first confirmation that the rate and extent of reaction without catalysis or byproducts of cyclic azasilanes conforms to the Sharpless requirements for “click chemistry” and can be deemed “click chemistry for surfaces.”
Elevated levels of interleukin-6 (IL-6) have been associated with the development of common mental disorders, such as depression, but its role in symptom resolution is unclear.
We examined the association between IL-6 and symptom resolution in a non-clinical sample of participants with psychological distress.
Relative to high IL-6 levels, low levels at baseline were associated with symptom resolution at follow-up [age- and sex-adjusted risk ratio (RR) = 1.15, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.06–1.25]. Further adjustment for covariates had little effect on the association. Symptomatic participants with repeated low IL-6 were more likely to be symptom-free at follow-up compared with those with repeated high IL-6 (RR = 1.21, 95% CI 1.03–1.41). Among the symptomatic participants with elevated IL-6 at baseline, IL-6 decreased along with symptom resolution.
IL-6 is potentially related to the mechanisms underlying recovery from symptoms of mental ill health. Further studies are needed to examine these mechanisms and to confirm the findings in relation to clinical depression.
SnO2-based varistors are strong candidates to replace the ZnO-based varistors due to ordering fewer additives to improve its electrical behavior as well as by showing similar nonlinear characteristics of ZnO varistors. In this work, SnO2-nanoparticles based-varistors with addition of 1.0 %mol of ZnO and 0.05 %mol of Nb2O5 were synthesized by chemical route. SnO2.ZnO.Nb2O5-films with 5 μm of thickness were obtained by electrophoretic deposition (EPD) of the nanoparticles on Si/Pt substrate from alcoholic suspension of SnO2-based powder. The sintering step was carried out in a microwave oven at 1000 °C for 40 minutes. Then, Cr3+ ions were deposited on the films surface by EPD after the sintering step. Each sample was submitted to different thermal treatments to improve the varistor behavior by diffusion of ions in the samples. The films showed a nonlinear coefficient (α) greater than 9, breakdown voltage (VR) around 60 V, low leakage current (IF ≈ 10-6 A), height potential barrier above 0.5 eV and grain boundary resistivity upward of 107 Ω.cm.
ZnO nanoparticles were prepared by a green electrochemical synthesis method applying low current densities followed by a thermal treatment. Sodium polystyrene sulphonate (PSS) was used as stabilizer in the electrolytic aqueous medium due to its biocompatibility and stability. The as-prepared nanocolloids were then annealed to improve their stability, and then converted via hydroxide species into stoichiometric oxide. Different calcination temperatures were studied. ZnO@PSS nanomaterials were deposited onto SiO2/Si substrates, in part in combination with an organic semiconductor layer to evaluate their influence on organic field effect transistors (OFETs). All nanomaterials and composite layers were characterized by morphological and spectroscopic techniques. Promising results regarding the use of ZnO@PSS in OFETs could be demonstrated.
Oxide thin films of zinc and titanium materials were deposited by different deposition techniques, to be applied as sensitive layers of pH sensor – EGFET device. The deposition techniques tested were dip-coat, spin-coat, electrodeposition and spray-pyrolysis. The routine and the parameters of each technique were changed aiming optimized the procedures. The pHs buffer solutions tested ranged from 2 to 12. ZnO thin film shows sensitivity about 23 mV/pH, while TiO2 thin films shows only 13.8 mV/pH. The final purpose of this study is to optimize the parameters for each deposition technique for both oxide materials.
Strontium titanate (SrTiO3) has novel properties, including a large temperature-dependent dielectric constant, and can be doped to make it metallic or even superconducting. The origin of conductivity observed at the SrTiO3/LaAlO3 interface is a topic of intense debate. In the present work, bulk single crystal SrTiO3 samples were heated at 1200°C, with the goal of producing cation vacancies. These thermally treated samples exhibited persistent photoconductivity (PPC) at room temperature. Upon exposure to sub-band-gap light (>2.9 eV), the free-electron density increases by over two orders of magnitude. This enhanced conductivity persists in the dark, at room temperature, for several days with essentially no decay. Light excites an electron from the vacancy to the conduction band, where it remains, due to a large recapture barrier. These observations highlight the importance of defects in determining the electrical properties of oxides and may point toward novel applications.
Plant genetic resources are raw materials and their use in breeding is one of the most sustainable ways to conserve biodiversity. The ICRISAT has over 120,000 accessions of its five mandate crops and six small millets. The management and utilization of such large diversity are greatest challenges to germplasm curators and crop breeders. New sources of variations have been discovered using core and minicore collections developed at the ICRISAT. About 1.4 million seed samples have been distributed; some accessions with specific attributes have been requested more frequently. The advances in genomics have led researchers to dissect population structure and diversity and mine allelic variations associated with agronomically beneficial traits. Genome-wide association mapping in sorghum has revealed significant marker–trait associations for many agronomically beneficial traits. Wild relatives harbour genes for resistance to diseases and insect pests. Resistance to pod borer in chickpea and pigeonpea and resistance to rust and late leaf spot in groundnut have been successfully introgressed into a cultivated genetic background. Synthetics in groundnut are available to broaden the cultigen's gene pool. ICRISAT has notified the release of 266 varieties/cultivars, germplasm, and elite genetic stocks with unique traits, with some having a significant impact on breeding programs. Seventy-five germplasm lines have been directly released for cultivation in 39 countries.
GaN implanted with donor(Si, S, Se, Te) or acceptor (Be, Mg, C) species was annealed at 900-1500 °C using AlN encapsulation. No redistribution was measured by SIMS for any of the dopants and effective diffusion coefficients are ≤2 × 10−13 cm2. s−1 at 1400 °C, except Be, which displays damage-enhanced diffusion at 900 °C and is immobile once the point defect concentration is removed. Activation efficiency of ∼90% is obtained for Si at 1400 °C. TEM of the implanted material shows a strong reduction in lattice disorder at 1400-1500 °C compared to previous results at 1100 °C. There is minimal interaction of the sputtered AlN with GaN under our conditions, and it is readily removed selectively with KOH.