To send content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about sending content to .
To send content items to your Kindle, first ensure firstname.lastname@example.org
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
The Saemangeum tidal flat, an important staging site for migratory shorebirds that travel the East Asian-Australasian (EAA) Flyway, was isolated from the eastern Yellow Sea in 2006 as part of a large-scale reclamation project. To gain a better understanding of the impacts that this reclamation has had on the long-distance migratory shorebirds that use the EAA Flyway, we examined the number of shorebirds visiting Saemangeum and three adjacent sites in the Geum Estuary (Yubu Island, the Janghang coastline, and the Geum River Channel) during the spring and fall prior to, and after, completion of the reclamation (2004–2013). A total of 48 shorebird species, including one Critically Endangered, three Endangered, and nine Near Threatened species, were observed over this period. Peak numbers of shorebirds recorded at sites in Saemangeum and the Geum Estuary following completion of the project were 74% below those recorded in 2004 and 2005, the years prior to reclamation activity. In Saemangeum, shorebird abundance declined by approximately 95% and 97.3% during the northward and southward migrations, respectively, as a result of reclamation. Although shorebird populations in the Geum Estuary increased by 5% and 20% during the northwards and southward migrations, respectively, these increases failed to offset the reduction in shorebird abundance in Saemangeum; overall, shorebird abundance at Saemangeum and the three adjacent sites in the Geum Estuary markedly declined over the reclamation period. Given the more favourable conditions of adjacent areas, sites in Saemangeum and the Geum Estuary no longer provide the habitat conditions necessary for long-distance migratory shorebirds. In order to improve habitat for staging migratory birds, we suggest that measures such as the conversion of an abandoned salt farm for use as roosting sites, the construction of artificial barriers to prevent human disturbance, and re-opening of the river-banks to facilitate water flow be implemented.
To evaluate the appropriateness of the screening strategy for healthcare personnel (HCP) during a hospital-associated Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) outbreak, we performed a serologic investigation in 189 rRT-PCR–negative HCP exposed and assigned to MERS patients. Although 20%–25% of HCP experienced MERS-like symptoms, none of them showed seroconversion by plaque reduction neutralization test (PRNT).
Personality may predispose family caregivers to experience caregiving differently in similar situations and influence the outcomes of caregiving. A limited body of research has examined the role of some personality traits for health-related quality of life (HRQoL) among family caregivers of persons with dementia (PWD) in relation to burden and depression.
Data from a large clinic-based national study in South Korea, the Caregivers of Alzheimer's Disease Research (CARE), were analyzed (N = 476). Path analysis was performed to explore the association between family caregivers’ personality traits and HRQoL. With depression and burden as mediating factors, direct and indirect associations between five personality traits and HRQoL of family caregivers were examined.
Results demonstrated the mediating role of caregiver burden and depression in linking two personality traits (neuroticism and extraversion) and HRQoL. Neuroticism and extraversion directly and indirectly influenced the mental HRQoL of caregivers. Neuroticism and extraversion only indirectly influenced their physical HRQoL. Neuroticism increased the caregiver's depression, whereas extraversion decreased it. Neuroticism only was mediated by burden to influence depression and mental and physical HRQoL.
Personality traits can influence caregiving outcomes and be viewed as an individual resource of the caregiver. A family caregiver's personality characteristics need to be assessed for tailoring support programs to get the optimal benefits from caregiver interventions.
Korea Astronomy Observatory (KAO) is working to rebuild a 1.0-m robotic telescope in collaboration with a company (Astronomical Consultants & Equipment, Inc. or ACE). The telescope is being totally refurbished to make a fully automatic telescope which can operate in both interactive an fully autonomous robotic modes. This paper describes the design concepts and the work completed. The telescope is an f/7.5 Ritchey-Chretien system mounted on an equatorial fork with friction drives capable of high slewing (5°/s2) and high resolution tracking. The control software manages the entire telescope, instruments and observatory. In interactive local and remote modes the observer can manually enter coordinates or retrieve them from a database. In robotic mode the telescope controller downloads requests from users and creates a schedule. The telescope will be equipped with a CCD camera and will be available over the internet.
The Far-ultraviolet IMaging Spectrograph (FIMS) is a small spectrograph optimized for the observations of diffuse hot interstellar medium in far-ultraviolet wavebands (900–1150Å and 1335–1750Å). The instrument is expected to be sensitive to emission line fluxes an order of magnitude fainter than any previous missions. FIMS is currently under development and is scheduled for launch in 2002.
Cerebral white matter hyperintensities (WMH) are prevalent incident findings on brain MRI scans among elderly people and have been consistently implicated in cognitive dysfunction. However, differential roles of WMH by region in cognitive function are still unclear. The aim of this study was to ascertain the differential role of regional WMH in predicting progression from mild cognitive impairment (MCI) to different subtypes of dementia.
Participants were recruited from the Clinical Research Center for Dementia of South Korea (CREDOS) study. A total of 622 participants with MCI diagnoses at baseline and follow-up evaluations were included for the analysis. Initial MRI scans were rated for WMH on a visual rating scale developed for the CREDOS. Differential effects of regional WMH in predicting incident dementia were evaluated using the Cox proportional hazards model.
Of the 622 participants with MCI at baseline, 139 patients (22.3%) converted to all-cause dementia over a median of 14.3 (range 6.0–36.5) months. Severe periventricular WMH (PWMH) predicted incident all-cause dementia (Hazard ratio (HR) 2.22; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.43–3.43) and Alzheimer's disease (AD) (HR 1.86; 95% CI 1.12–3.07). Subcortical vascular dementia (SVD) was predicted by both PWMH (HR 16.14; 95% CI 1.97–132.06) and DWMH (HR 8.77; 95% CI 1.77–43.49) in more severe form (≥ 10 mm).
WMH differentially predict dementia by region and severity. Our findings suggest that PWMH may play an independent role in the pathogenesis of dementia, especially in AD.
To determine the influence of early pain relief for patients with suspected appendicitis on the diagnostic performance of surgical residents.
A prospective randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial was conducted for patients with suspected appendicitis. The patients were randomized to receive placebo (normal saline intravenous [IV]) infusions over 5 minutes or the study drug (morphine 5 mg IV). All of the clinical evaluations by surgical residents were performed 30 minutes after administration of the study drug or placebo. After obtaining the clinical probability of appendicitis, as determined by the surgical residents, abdominal computed tomography was performed. The primary objective was to compare the influence of IV morphine on the ability of surgical residents to diagnose appendicitis.
A total of 213 patients with suspected appendicitis were enrolled. Of these patients, 107 patients received morphine, and 106 patients received placebo saline. The negative appendectomy percentages in each group were similar (3.8% in the placebo group and 3.2% in the pain control group, p=0.62). The perforation rates in each group were also similar (18.9% in the placebo group and 14.3% in the pain control group, p=0.75). Receiver operating characteristic analysis revealed that the overall diagnostic accuracy in each group was similar (the area under the curve of the placebo group and the pain control group was 0.63 v. 0.61, respectively, p=0.81).
Early pain control in patients with suspected appendicitis does not affect the diagnostic performance of surgical residents.
Epidemiological studies have reported that higher education (HE) is associated with a reduced risk of incident Alzheimer's disease (AD). However, after the clinical onset of AD, patients with HE levels show more rapid cognitive decline than patients with lower education (LE) levels. Although education level and cognition have been linked, there have been few longitudinal studies investigating the relationship between education level and cortical decline in patients with AD. The aim of this study was to compare the topography of cortical atrophy longitudinally between AD patients with HE (HE-AD) and AD patients with LE (LE-AD).
We prospectively recruited 36 patients with early-stage AD and 14 normal controls. The patients were classified into two groups according to educational level, 23 HE-AD (>9 years) and 13 LE-AD (≤9 years).
As AD progressed over the 5-year longitudinal follow-ups, the HE-AD showed a significant group-by-time interaction in the right dorsolateral frontal and precuneus, and the left parahippocampal regions compared to the LE-AD.
Our study reveals that the preliminary longitudinal effect of HE accelerates cortical atrophy in AD patients over time, which underlines the importance of education level for predicting prognosis.
This study examined changes in health-related quality of life (HRQoL) and quality of care (QoC) as perceived by terminally ill cancer patients and a stratified set of HRQoL or QoC factors that are most likely to influence survival at the end of life (EoL).
We administered questionnaires to 619 consecutive patients immediately after they were diagnosed with terminal cancer by physicians at 11 university hospitals and at the National Cancer Center in Korea. Subjects were followed up over 161.2 person-years until their deaths. We measured HRQoL using the core 30-item European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of Life Questionnaire, and QoC using the Quality Care Questionnaire–End of Life (QCQ–EoL). We evaluated changes in HRQoL and QoC issues during the first three months after enrollment, performing sensitivity analysis by using data generated via four methods (complete case analysis, available case analysis, the last observation carried forward, and multiple imputation).
Emotional and cognitive functioning decreased significantly over time, while dyspnea, constipation, and pain increased significantly. Dignity-conserving care, care by healthcare professionals, family relationships, and QCQ–EoL total score decreased significantly. Global QoL, appetite loss, and Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group Performance Status (ECOG–PS) scores were significantly associated with survival.
Significance of results:
Future standardization of palliative care should be focused on assessment of these deteriorated types of quality. Accurate estimates of the length of life remaining for terminally ill cancer patients by such EoL-enhancing factors as global QoL, appetite loss, and ECOG–PS are needed to help patients experience a dignified and comfortable death.
This study aimed to investigate the influences of age, education, and gender on the two total scores (TS-I and TS-II) of the Consortium to Establish a Registry for Alzheimer's Disease Neuropsychological assessment battery (CERAD-NP) and to provide normative information based on an analysis for a large number of elderly persons with a wide range of educational levels.
In the study, 1,987 community-dwelling healthy volunteers (620 males and 1,367 females; 50–90 years of age; and zero to 25 years of education) were included. People with serious neurological, medical, and psychiatric disorders (including dementia) were excluded. All participants underwent the CERAD-NP assessment. TS-I was generated by summing raw scores from the CERAD-NP subtests, excluding Mini-Mental State Examination and Constructional Praxis (CP) recall subtests. TS-II was calculated by adding CP recall score to TS-I.
Both TS-I and TS-II were significantly influenced by demographic variables. Education accounted for the greatest proportion of score variance. Interaction effect between age and gender was found. Based on the results obtained, normative data of the CERAD-NP total scores were stratified by age (six overlapping tables), education (four strata), and gender.
The normative information will be very useful for better interpretation of the CERAD-NP total scores in various clinical and research settings and for comparing individuals’ performance of the battery across countries.
We investigated the structural complexity and texture of the cytoskeleton and nucleus in human mesenchymal stem cells during early phase differentiation into osteoblasts according to the differentiation–induction method: mechanical and/or chemical stimuli. For this, fractal dimension and a number of parameters utilizing the gray-level co-occurrence matrix (GLCM) were calculated based on single-cell images after confirmation of differentiation by immunofluorescence staining. The F-actin and nuclear fractal dimensions were greater in both stimulus groups compared with the control group. The GLCM values for energy and homogeneity were lower in fibers of the F-actin cytoskeleton, indicating a dispersed F-actin arrangement during differentiation. In the nuclei of both stimulus groups, higher values for energy and homogeneity were calculated, indicating that the chromatin arrangement was chaotic during the early phase of differentiation. It was shown and confirmed that combined stimulation with mechanical and chemical factors accelerated differentiation, even in the early phase. Fractal dimension analysis and GLCM methods have the potential to provide a framework for further investigation of stem cell differentiation.
Sesame (Sesamum indicum L.) is one of the oldest oil crops and is widely cultivated in Asia and Africa. The aim of this study was to assess the genetic diversity, phylogenetic relationships and population structure of 277 sesame core collection accessions collected from 15 countries in four different continents. A total of 158 alleles were detected among the sesame accessions, with the number varying from 3 to 25 alleles per locus and an average of 11.3. Polymorphism information content values ranged from 0.34 to 0.84, with an average of 0.568. These values indicated a high genetic diversity at 14 loci both among and within the populations. Of these, 44 genotype-specific alleles were identified in 12 of the 14 polymorphic simple sequence repeat markers. The core collection preserved a much higher level of genetic variation. Therefore, 10.1% was selected as the best sampling percentage from the whole collection when constructing the core collection. The 277 core collection accessions formed four robust clusters in the unweighted pair group method and the arithmetic averages (UPGMA) dendrogram, although the clustering did not indicate any clear division among the sesame accessions based on their geographical locations. Similar patterns were obtained using model-based structure analysis and country-based dendrograms, as some accessions situated geographically far apart were grouped together in the same cluster. The results of these analyses will increase our understanding of the genotype-specific alleles, genetic diversity and population structure of core collections, and the information can be used for the development of a future breeding strategy to improve sesame yield.
Objectives: The aim of this study was to systematically assess the long-term (≥ 6 months) benefits of epidural steroid injection therapies for patients with low back pain.
Methods: We identified randomized controlled trials by database searches up to October 2011 and by additional hand searches without language restrictions. Randomized controlled trials on the effects of epidurals for low back pain with follow-up for at least 6 months were included. Outcomes considered were pain relief, functional improvement in 6 to 12 months after epidural steroid injection treatment and the number of patients who underwent subsequent surgery. Meta-analysis was performed using a random-effects model.
Results: Twenty-nine articles were selected. The meta-analysis suggested that a significant treatment effect on pain was noted at 6 months of follow-up (weighted mean difference [WMD], −0.41; 95 percent confidence interval [CI], −0.66 to −0.16), but was no longer statistically significant after adjusting for the baseline pain score (WMD, −0.19; 95 percent CI, −0.61 to 0.24). Epidural steroid injection did not improve back-specific disability more than a placebo or other procedure. Epidural steroid injection did not significantly decrease the number of patients who underwent subsequent surgery compared with a placebo or other treatments (relative risk, 1.02; 95 percent CI, 0.83 to 1.24).
Conclusions: A long-term benefit of epidural steroid injections for low back pain was not suggested at 6 months or longer. Introduction of selection bias in the majority of injection studies seems apparent. Baseline adjustment is essential when we evaluate pain as a main outcome of injection therapy.
This study quantitatively investigated the immediate effects of a photooxidative collagen cross-linking treatment with photosensitizer riboflavin (RF) and 370 nm UVA light in in vitro human corneoscleral collagen fibrils using histology, thickness, scanning electron microscopy, and atomic force microscopy analyses. Twenty 8 × 2 mm corneoscleral strips were dissected sagittally from donor tissue using a scalpel. Four parameters were investigated, including the density, thickness, adhesion force, and stiffness of corneoscleral tissues before and after the collagen cross-linking treatment. The RFUVA-catalyzed collagen cross-linking treatment led to an increase in the density of both corneal (8%) and scleral (23%) stromal collagens. However, there was no difference in corneoscleral thickness. Furthermore, RFUVA-catalyzed collagen cross-linking treatment led to an increased biomechanical response of corneosclera: 25 and 8% increases in corneoscleral stiffness, and 24 and 22% increases in corneoscleral adhesion force. The collagen cross-linking treatment through RF-sensitized photoreaction may cause structural and biomechanical changes in the collagen fibril network of the cornea and the sclera. This is due to narrowing of the interfibrillar spacing and the stromal edema.
This study investigated the inflammatory effect of intraoperative mitomycin C (MMC) on adhesion reformation in human rectus muscles. Ten consecutive patients who underwent medial rectus resection had their postoperative rectus muscles divided into two groups: control group (n = 10) and MMC group (n = 10). In the MMC group, the muscle was soaked for 2 min with MMC, prepared as a 0.2 mg/mL (0.02%) solution. The 0.02% MMC reactions were examined using histological analysis with hematoxylin-eosin (inflammatory response) and Masson's trichrome (collagen fibrils), immunoreactivities of cyclooxygenase-II (inflammatory response), and collagen type I and III, scanning electron microscopy analysis to quantify the diameter and D-periodicity of collagen fibrils, and atomic force microscopy analysis to quantify the diameter, D-periodicity, and adhesion force of collagen fibrils. The rectus muscles treated with 0.02% MMC showed a significantly increased inflammatory response (p < 0.05), increased collagen density (p < 0.0001), increased fibril diameter (p < 0.001 or p < 0.05), and decreased fibril adhesion force (p < 0.005) compared to the rectus muscles in the control group. MMC simultaneously caused an inflammatory response as well as nanostructural and biomechanical property changes in the collagen fibril network.
Klotho protein is involved in insulin-signalling and ageing. Klotho mutation causes premature ageing and significantly shortens the lifespan. The anti-neoplastic drug cisplatin promotes ototoxicity at higher doses by inducing apoptosis. This study aimed to clarify the effect of klotho expression on cisplatin ototoxicity, using an auditory cell line.
Materials and methods:
Expressions of klotho messenger RNA and protein were analysed by reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction and western blotting. Auditory cells (HEI-OC1 line) were pretreated with 2 nM klotho protein for 2 hours; 15 µM cisplatin was then applied. After 48 hours incubation, assessment of cell viability (via 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazoliumbromide assay), apoptosis (via Hoechst 33258 staining) and reactive oxygen species was performed.
Klotho protein expression increased in cisplatin-treated auditory cells. Cells treated with both klotho protein and cisplatin showed a viability of 67.7 per cent, versus 59.4 per cent in cisplatin-treated cells. Klotho significantly attenuated the cisplatin-induced increase in reactive oxygen species, and increased the viability of cells with cisplatin-induced cytotoxicity.
Klotho protein is protective against cisplatin-induced auditory cell cytotoxicity; inhibition of reactive oxygen species may be the main mechanism.
The size dependence of the lattice parameter of nanosolids has extensively been studied because lattice strain engineering is important in controlling the physical properties of nanowires (NWs), such as band gap, carrier transport, mechanical strength, etc. We have investigated the size-dependent lattice behavior of microstructure-controlled Sn NWs with radii of 7–35 nm. The NW microstructures were controlled as single-crystal, granular, and bamboo structures in the longitudinal direction. Results showed that the a-axis lattice parameter in the -longitudinal direction of NWs can be controlled within 1% by varying the wire microstructure for the same wire radius because it is strongly dependent on the microstructure and the wire radius. Moreover, as the randomness of the grain orientation in the microstructure-controlled NWs increases, by which the anisotropy of surface stress is effectively reduced, the lattice strain of the NW can be compressive or tensile as a function of the wire radius. The longitudinal lattice parameters of microstructure-controlled Sn NWs can be tailored by reducing the effective anisotropy of surface stresses under a dimension confinement in the nanometer scale.
Despite numerous previous studies, relationships between watershed land use and adjacent streams and rivers at various scales in Korea remain unclear. This study investigated the relationships between land uses and the physical, chemical, and biological characteristics of 720 sites of streams and rivers across the country. The land uses at two spatial scales, including a 1-km buffer and the base watershed management region (BWMR), were computed in a geographical information system (GIS) with a digital land use/land cover map. Characteristics of land uses at two spatial scales were then correlated with the monitored multidimensional characteristics of the streams and rivers. The results of this study indicate that land use types have significant effects on stream and river characteristics. Specifically, most characteristics were negatively correlated with the proportions of urban, rice paddy, agricultural, and bare soil areas and positively correlated with the amount of forest. The site-scale and BWMR-scale analyses suggest that BWMR land use patterns were more strongly related to ecological integrity than they were to site land use patterns. Improving our understanding of land use effects will largely depend on relating the results of site-specific studies that use similar response techniques and measures to evaluate ecological integrity. In addition, our results clearly indicate that the characteristics of streams and rivers are closely linked and that land use types differentially affect those characteristics. Thus, effective restoration and management for ecological integrity of lotic system should consider the physical, chemical, and biological factors in combination.