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Populations of Critically Endangered White-rumped Gyps bengalensis and Slender-billed G. tenuirostris Vultures in Nepal declined rapidly during the 2000s, almost certainly because of the effects of the use in livestock of the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug diclofenac, which is nephrotoxic to Gyps vultures. In 2006, veterinary use of diclofenac was banned in Nepal and this was followed by the gradual implementation, over most of the geographical range of the two vulture species in Nepal, of a Vulture Safe Zone (VSZ) programme to advocate vulture conservation, raise awareness about diclofenac, provide vultures with NSAID-free food and encourage the veterinary use in livestock of a vulture-safe alternative NSAID (meloxicam). We report the results of long-term monitoring of vulture populations in Nepal before and after this programme was implemented, by means of road transects. Piecewise regression analysis of the count data indicated that a rapid decline of the White-rumped Vulture population from 2002 up to about 2013 gave way to a partial recovery between about 2013 and 2018. More limited data for the Slender-billed Vulture indicated that a rapid decline also gave way to partial recovery from about 2012 onwards. The rates at which populations were increasing in the 2010s exceeded the upper end of the range of increase rates expected in a closed population under optimal conditions. The possibility that immigration from India is contributing to the changes cannot be excluded. We present evidence from open and undercover pharmacy surveys that the VSZ programme had apparently become effective in reducing the availability of diclofenac in a large part of the range of these species in Nepal by about 2011. Hence, community-based advocacy and awareness-raising actions, and possibly also provisioning of safe food, may have made an important contribution to vulture conservation by augmenting the effects of changes in the regulation of toxic veterinary drugs.
Shunt-related adverse events are frequent in infants after modified Blalock–Taussig despite use of acetylsalicylic acid prophylaxis. A higher incidence of acetylsalicylic acid-resistance and sub-therapeutic acetylsalicylic acid levels has been reported in infants. We evaluated whether using high-dose acetylsalicylic acid can decrease shunt-related adverse events in infants after modified Blalock–Taussig.
In this single-centre retrospective cohort study, we included infants ⩽1-year-old who underwent modified Blalock–Taussig placement and received acetylsalicylic acid in the ICU. We defined acetylsalicylic acid treatment groups as standard dose (⩽7 mg/kg/day) and high dose (⩾8 mg/kg/day) based on the initiating dose.
There were 34 infants in each group. Both groups were similar in age, gender, cardiac defect type, ICU length of stay, and time interval to second stage or definitive repair. Shunt interventions (18 versus 32%, p=0.16), shunt thrombosis (14 versus 17%, p=0.74), and mortality (9 versus 12%, p=0.65) were not significantly different between groups. On multiple logistic regression analysis, single-ventricle morphology (odds ratio 5.2, 95% confidence interval of 1.2–23, p=0.03) and post-operative red blood cells transfusion ⩾24 hours [odds ratio 15, confidence interval of (3–71), p<0.01] were associated with shunt-related adverse events. High-dose acetylsalicylic acid treatment [odds ratio 2.6, confidence interval of (0.7–10), p=0.16] was not associated with decrease in these events.
High-dose acetylsalicylic acid may not be sufficient in reducing shunt-related adverse events in infants after modified Blalock–Taussig. Post-operative red blood cells transfusion may be a modifiable risk factor for these events. A randomised trial is needed to determine appropriate acetylsalicylic acid dosing in infants with modified Blalock–Taussig.
An account of thelotremoid species of Graphidaceae in India is provided, which includes 124 species in 24 genera. Ocellularia and Thelotrema are the most diverse genera represented by 34 and 18 species, respectively. Type specimens were re-examined and additional samples studied morphologically and chemically. One new species, Ocellularia upretii S. Joshi, Divakar, Lumbsch & Lücking, is described; it is characterized by a greyish green thallus, porinoid ascomata, brown proper exciple, simple, carbonized columella, clear hymenium, transversely septate, amyloid ascospores of 110–125×15–20 µm and an absence of secondary metabolites. Asteristion australianum, Astrochapsa mirabilis, Cruentotrema cruentatum, C. kurandense, Ocellularia violacea and Thelotrema adjectum are reported as new to the country, and Astrochapsa mirabilis, Melanotrema submicrosporoides, Ocellularia annuloelevata, O. subkeralensis and Rhabdodiscus verrucoisidiatus are proposed as new combinations. Diploschistes awasthii, Ocellularia gupeti, O. leucina, O. mahabalei, Thelotrema confertum and T. verrucorugosum are synonymized under D. scruposus, O. neomasonhalei, O. urceolaris, O. thelotremoides, Chapsa leprocarpoides and T. rugatulum, respectively, with Ocellularia canariana and O. verrucomarginata reduced to synonymy with O. allosporoides.
This experimental study focuses on the effect of horizontal boundaries with pyramid-shaped roughness elements on the heat transfer in rotating Rayleigh–Bénard convection. It is shown that the Ekman pumping mechanism, which is responsible for the heat transfer enhancement under rotation in the case of smooth top and bottom surfaces, is unaffected by the roughness as long as the Ekman layer thickness
is significantly larger than the roughness height
. As the rotation rate increases, and thus
decreases, the roughness elements penetrate the radially inward flow in the interior of the Ekman boundary layer that feeds the columnar Ekman vortices. This perturbation generates additional thermal disturbances which are found to increase the heat transfer efficiency even further. However, when
, the Ekman boundary layer is strongly perturbed by the roughness elements and the Ekman pumping mechanism is suppressed. The results suggest that the Ekman pumping is re-established for
as the faces of the pyramidal roughness elements then act locally as a sloping boundary on which an Ekman layer can be formed.
Deriving glacier outlines from satellite data has become increasingly popular in the past decade. In particular when glacier outlines are used as a base for change assessment, it is important to know how accurate they are. Calculating the accuracy correctly is challenging, as appropriate reference data (e.g. from higher-resolution sensors) are seldom available. Moreover, after the required manual correction of the raw outlines (e.g. for debris cover), such a comparison would only reveal the accuracy of the analyst rather than of the algorithm applied. Here we compare outlines for clean and debris-covered glaciers, as derived from single and multiple digitizing by different or the same analysts on very high- (1 m) and medium-resolution (30 m) remote-sensing data, against each other and to glacier outlines derived from automated classification of Landsat Thematic Mapper data. Results show a high variability in the interpretation of debris-covered glacier parts, largely independent of the spatial resolution (area differences were up to 30%), and an overall good agreement for clean ice with sufficient contrast to the surrounding terrain (differences ∼5%). The differences of the automatically derived outlines from a reference value are as small as the standard deviation of the manual digitizations from several analysts. Based on these results, we conclude that automated mapping of clean ice is preferable to manual digitization and recommend using the latter method only for required corrections of incorrectly mapped glacier parts (e.g. debris cover, shadow).
Changes in seroprevalence of cysticercosis diagnosed in Chandigarh, India between 1998 and 2014 were investigated by extraction and analysis of data from records held at the Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research in Chandigarh. Among the total number of samples for which cysticercosis had been suspected during this period (N = 9650), 1716 (17·8%) were seropositive. Adults were more likely to be seropositive than children, and women were more likely to be seropositive than men. In addition to there being fewer patients with suspicion of cysticercosis over the data analysis period, the proportion of patients seropositive also reduced significantly. Despite these reductions, which are probably associated with improved infrastructure and sanitation within Chandigarh, and despite meat consumption being relatively rare in this area, the extent of cysticercosis in this population remains problematic. Further efforts should be made to reduce transmission of this infection, with particular emphasis on women. Such efforts should follow the One Health concept, and involve medical efforts (including diagnosis and treatment of T. solium tapeworm carriers), veterinary efforts directed towards meat inspection and prevention of infection of pigs, and environmental health and sanitation engineers (to minimize environmental contamination with human waste).
Giant pulses (GPs), occasional individual pulses with an intensity 100 times the average intensity, have been detected in four pulsars to date. Their origin is not well understood, but studies suggest a connection between the strength of magnetic field at the light cylinder Blc and the existence of GPs. Here, we report on detection of significant Large Amplitude Pulses (LAPs) in two more pulsars with high values of Blc, PSRs J0218+4232 and B1957+20, observed using Giant Meterwave Radio Telescope (GMRT).
To demonstrate a spatial epidemiologic approach that could be used in the aftermath of disasters to (1) detect spatial clusters and (2) explore geographic heterogeneity in predictors for mental health and general wellness.
We used a cohort study of Hurricane Ike survivors (n=508) to assess the spatial distribution of postdisaster mental health wellness (most likely resilience trajectory for posttraumatic stress symptoms [PTSS] and depression) and general wellness (most likely resilience trajectory for PTSS, depression, functional impairment, and days of poor health) in Galveston, Texas. We applied the spatial scan statistic (SaTScan) and geographically weighted regression.
We found spatial clusters of high likelihood wellness in areas north of Texas City and spatial concentrations of low likelihood wellness in Galveston Island. Geographic variation was found in predictors of wellness, showing increasing associations with both forms of wellness the closer respondents were located to Galveston City in Galveston Island.
Predictors for postdisaster wellness may manifest differently across geographic space with concentrations of lower likelihood wellness and increased associations with predictors in areas of higher exposure. Our approach could be used to inform geographically targeted interventions to promote mental health and general wellness in disaster-affected communities. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2016;10:261–273)
Very little is known on the impact of recurrent disasters on mental health.
The present study examines the immediate impact of a recurrent flood on mental health and functioning among an affected population in the rural district of Bahraich, Uttar Pradesh, India, compared with a population in the same region that is not affected by floods.
The study compared 318 affected respondents with 308 individuals who were not affected by floods. Symptoms of anxiety and depression were assessed by the Hopkins Symptom Checklist-25 (HSCL-25). Psychological and physical functioning was assessed by using the Short Form-12 (SF-12).
The affected group showed large to very large differences with the comparison group on symptoms of anxiety (D = .92) and depression (D = 1.22). The affected group scored significantly lower on psychological and physical functioning than the comparison group (respectively D = .33 and D = .80). However, hierarchical linear regressions showed no significant relationship between mental health and the domains of functioning in the affected group, whereas mental health and the domains of functioning were significantly related in the comparison group.
This study found a large negative impact of the recurrent floods on mental health outcomes and psychological and physical functioning. However, in a context with recurrent floods, disaster mental health status is not a relevant predictor of functioning. The findings suggest that the observed mental health status and impaired functioning in this context are also outcomes of another mechanism: Both outcomes are likely to be related to the erosion of the social and environmental and material context. As such, the findings refer to a need to implement psychosocial context-oriented interventions to address the erosion of the context rather than specific mental health interventions.
WindTR, JoshiPC, KleberRJ, KomproeIH. The Impact of Recurrent Disasters on Mental Health: A Study on Seasonal Floods in Northern India. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2013;28(3):1-7.
Insufficiency of vitamin B12 (B12) and folate during pregnancy can result in low concentrations in the fetus and have adverse effects on brain development. We investigated the relationship between maternal B12 and folate nutrition during pregnancy and offspring motor, mental and social development at two years of age (2 y). Mothers (n = 123) and their offspring (62 girls, 61 boys) from rural and middle-class urban communities in and around Pune city were followed through pregnancy up to 2 y. Maternal B12 and folate concentrations were measured at 28 and 34 weeks of gestation. At 2 y, the Developmental Assessment Scale for Indian Infants was used to determine motor and mental developmental quotients and the Vineland Social Maturity Scale for the social developmental quotient. Overall, 62% of the mothers had low B12 levels (<150 pmol/l) and one mother was folate deficient during pregnancy. Maternal B12 at 28 and 34 weeks of gestation was associated with offspring B12 at 2 y (r = 0.29, r = 0.32, P < 0.001), but folate was not associated with offspring folate. At 2 y, motor development was associated with maternal folate at 28 and 34 weeks of gestation. Mental and social development quotients were associated positively with head circumference and negatively with birth weight. In addition, pregnancy B12 and folate were positively associated with mental and social development quotients. Maternal B12 and folate during intrauterine life may favorably influence brain development and function. Pregnancy provides a window of opportunity to enhance fetal psychomotor (motor and mental) development.
Longitudinal studies investigating vitamin B12 and folate status of mothers and their offspring will provide a better understanding of intergenerational nutrition. During pregnancy and 2 years (2y) after delivery, we measured plasma vitamin B12 and folate concentrations in 118 women [aged (mean ± s.d.) 22.9 ± 3.9y] who attended a rural (n = 68) or an urban (n = 50) antenatal clinic in Pune, India. Cord blood vitamin B12 and folate were measured, and when the child was 2y total homocysteine (tHcy) was also measured. Demographic and diet measurements were recorded using standard methods.
Pregnancy plasma vitamin B12 concentration at 34 weeks was low [median (25th, 75th), 115 (95, 147) pm]; 75% had low status (<150 pm). Plasma folate was high (mean ± s.d., 33 ± 21 nm); one had a folate concentration <7 pm. Cord plasma vitamin B12 and folate concentrations were higher than and positively associated with maternal concentrations. In stepwise regression, higher child vitamin B12 at 2y was predicted (total R2 15.7%) by pregnancy vitamin B12 (std β 0.201, R2 7.7%), current consumption of cow's milk (std β 0.194, R2 3.3%) and whether breast feeding was stopped before 2y (std β −0.234 R2 7.2%). Child's 2y tHcy concentration was high (11.4 ± 3.6 μm) and predicted by lower pregnancy vitamin B12 (std β −0.206, R2 4.1%), lack of vitamin supplementation (std β −0.256, R2 5.6%) in pregnancy and whether currently breastfed (std β 0.268, R2 8.4%).
Low maternal vitamin B12 status in pregnancy and prolonged breast-feeding results in disturbed one-carbon metabolism in offspring at 2y. Supplementation of women of child-bearing age, particularly during pregnancy and lactation, may improve the homocysteine status of these children.
To propose radiofrequency coblation as a potential treatment modality for mild to moderate epistaxis in patients with hereditary haemorrhagic telangiectasia.
Case reports and review of the world literature concerning coblation and other treatment modalities for epistaxis in patients with hereditary haemorrhagic telangiectasia.
Effective epistaxis control was achieved in four out of five cases of hereditary haemorrhagic telangiectasia. In the fifth case, we struggled to achieve haemostasis due to disease severity.
Radiofrequency coblation is a novel technique, which was found to be a safe, effective, quick and well tolerated treatment option for epistaxis management in patients with hereditary haemorrhagic telangiectasia.
Two new species, Lecanora hafelliana L. Lü, Y. Joshi & Hur and L. loekoesii Y. Joshi, L. Lü & Hur, are described as new to science from South Korea and eight species, L. campestris (Schaer.) Hue, L. cenisia Ach., L. nipponica H. Miyaw., L. perplexa Brodo, L. plumosa Müll. Arg., L. polytropa (Hoffm.) Rabenh., L. subrugosa Nyl. and L. sulcata (Hue) H. Miyaw., are recorded from South Korea for the first time. Lecanora hafelliana is characterized by the presence of hafellic acid, which is reported for the first time in this genus, while L. loekoesii is characterized by multispored asci and a thallus containing norstictic acid.
Pulsed laser direct deposit Ni2Si Ohmic contacts were successfully fabricated on n-SiC. The electrical, structural, compositional, and surface morphological properties were investigated as a function of heat treatments ranging from 700 °C to 950 °C. The as-deposited and 700 °C annealed samples were non-Ohmic. Annealing at 950 C° yielded excellent Ohmic behavior, an abrupt void free interface, and a smooth surface morphology. No residual carbon was present within the contact film or at the film-SiC interface and the contact showed no appreciable contact expansion as a result of the 950 °C annealing process. Results of this investigation demonstrate that 950 °C annealed pulse laser deposited Ni2Si-SiC contacts possess excellent electrical, interfacial, microstructural, and surface properties, which are required for reliable device operation.
Novel Ni/WSi/Ti/Pt composite Ohmic contacts to n-SiC were investigated as a function of annealing temperatures up to 1000°C. The onset of Ohmic behavior occurred at annealing temperatures of 900°C. Annealing at temperatures between 950°and 1000°C yielded excellent Ohmic behavior. At these temperatures the contact-SiC interface was smooth, defect free and characterized by a narrow Ni2Si reaction region. The annealed contacts possessed atomically smooth surface morphologies and exhibited minimal contact expansion. The residual carbon, resultant from SiC decomposition, was constrained by reaction with the WSi and Ti metallization layers forming carbide phases of W and Ti. The locations of the carbide phases were spatially distant from the metal semiconductor interface. Our results demonstrate that the Ni/WSi/Ti/Pt composite Ohmic contact maintains the desirable electrical properties associated with Ni contacts and possess excellent interfacial, compositional and surface properties which are required for reliable high power and high temperature device operation.
AlxGal-xAs alloy was obtained on semi-insulating GaAs by laser beam interaction. For this purpose, thin layers (~150 A) of AlAs and GaAs were deposited by MICVD on the semi-insulating undoped GaAs substrate and irradiated with a high power laser beam. For a certain critical value of incident power (7.1 watts/mm2), a layer of AlxGal-xAs alloy was formed. The nature of the alloy was examined by Auger and Far infrared reflectance spectroscopy. The later technique reveals the characteristic mode of AlxGal-xAs confirming its formation. Disorder induced LA mode was also observed.
Epitaxial films of strontium bismuth tantalate (SrBi2Ta2O9, SBT) and strontium bismuth niobate (SrBi2Nb2O9, SBN) were grown using solution deposition techniques on magnesium oxide (MgO) substrates buffered with a 100 nm layer of lanthanum manganate (LaMnO3, LMO). Film structure and texture analyses were carried out using x-ray diffraction. Theta-2theta diffraction patterns were consistent with a c-axis aligned structure for both the buffer layer and the solution deposited films. Theta-2 theta scans revealed (001)SBT, SBN //(001) LMO epitaxial relationships between the solution deposited films and the buffer layer. A pole figure about the SBT, SBN (115) reflection indicated a single in-plane epitaxy. Film quality was assessed using ω and φ scans. Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (13C) was used to characterized the methoxy-ethoxide solutions used for the deposition of the SBN and SBT films.
Out-of-phase boundaries (OPBs), planar faults between regions of a crystal that are misaligned by a fraction of a unit cell dimension, occur frequently in materials of high structural anisotropy. Rarely observed in the bulk, OPBs frequently exist in epitaxial films of layered complex oxides, such as YBCO-type, Aurivillius, and Ruddlesden-Popper phases, and frequently propagate through the entire thickness of a film, due to their large offset and the improbability of opposite-sign OPB annihilation. OPBs have previously been demonstrated to have a significant impact upon properties, so it is important to understand their generation. These faults arise through the same few mechanisms in the various layered complex oxides.
An effort is made to unify the discussion of nucleation of these defects, common to layered oxide materials. OPBs can nucleate at the film-substrate interface (primary) via steric, chemical, or misfit mechanisms, or post-growth (secondary) through crystallographic shear during decomposition of volatile components. Examples of the mechanisms observed during high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM) study of Aurivillius and Ruddlesden-Popper phases are presented. A method for estimating the relative OPB density in a film from correlation of x-ray diffraction (XRD) θ-2θ data with TEM information on OPBs is presented.