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Despite the global significance of the Leach’s Storm-petrel Hydrobates leucorhous colony on Baccalieu Island, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada, the estimate of 3.36 million breeding pairs reported for 1984 by Sklepkovych and Montevecchi stands as the single published population estimate for the world’s largest colony. This study increases knowledge of this population by analysing data from additional independent surveys conducted in 1984 and 1985, and by updating the population status with a survey conducted in 2013. Population estimates were derived by extrapolating occupied burrow densities to the estimated occupied area of four main habitat types (heath, forest, grass and fern), which in turn were based on proportions of habitats observed in plots (1984 and 1985) or by using a Geographic Information System approach (2013). Based on these surveys, the Leach’s Storm-petrel breeding population size on Baccalieu Island was estimated at 5.12 ± 0.73 (SE) and 4.60 ± 0.42 (SE) million pairs in 1984 and 1985 respectively, representing estimates 37–51% greater than the original 1984 survey. While discrepancies among these estimates were largely driven by the way occupied areas were estimated, our study confirms that Baccalieu Island hosts the largest Leach’s Storm-petrel colony in the world. Results from the 2013 survey estimate the current breeding Leach’s Storm-petrel population at 1.95 ± 0.14 (SE) million pairs, representing a 42% decline over 29 years (-1.4% per year), relative to the original published estimate of 3.36 ± 0.12 (SE) million pairs. The most prominent change has occurred in the density of storm-petrel burrows found in forest habitat which dropped by 70% despite forest remaining the second most abundant habitat available to nesting storm-petrels on Baccalieu Island. The cause of this decline remains unknown and is likely multi-faceted. Future research focusing on demographic studies is required to understand what is driving the population decline of this internationally important colony.
Universal screening for postpartum depression is recommended in many countries. Knowledge of whether the disclosure of depressive symptoms in the postpartum period differs across cultures could improve detection and provide new insights into the pathogenesis. Moreover, it is a necessary step to evaluate the universal use of screening instruments in research and clinical practice. In the current study we sought to assess whether the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS), the most widely used screening tool for postpartum depression, measures the same underlying construct across cultural groups in a large international dataset.
Ordinal regression and measurement invariance were used to explore the association between culture, operationalized as education, ethnicity/race and continent, and endorsement of depressive symptoms using the EPDS on 8209 new mothers from Europe and the USA.
Education, but not ethnicity/race, influenced the reporting of postpartum depression [difference between robust comparative fit indexes (∆*CFI) < 0.01]. The structure of EPDS responses significantly differed between Europe and the USA (∆*CFI > 0.01), but not between European countries (∆*CFI < 0.01).
Investigators and clinicians should be aware of the potential differences in expression of phenotype of postpartum depression that women of different educational backgrounds may manifest. The increasing cultural heterogeneity of societies together with the tendency towards globalization requires a culturally sensitive approach to patients, research and policies, that takes into account, beyond rhetoric, the context of a person's experiences and the context in which the research is conducted.
The Molonglo Observatory Synthesis Telescope (MOST), which at present images a fully synthesised 70′ field in 12 h, is being converted to enable observing modes which extend the field size to 160′. The new observing modes will allow the MOST to survey completely the sky south of δ = −30° to a (5σ) sensitivity limit of about 5 mJy. The result will be a catalogue of over 400,000 radio sources with a spatial density of less than 1 source per 100 beam areas, providing the foundation for a number of novel astronomical and cosmological investigations. The conversion involves construction of 352 low-noise HEMT preamplifiers, 88 digitally controlled UHF quad phase shifters, 88 mixers and IF sections, a new communication and control system, and several other new sub-systems. The project has been funded and developments are well advanced.
The objective of this study was to assess the use of statistical algorithms in identifying significant clusters of Salmonella spp. across different sectors of the food chain within an integrated surveillance programme. Three years of weekly Salmonella serotype data from farm animals, meat, and humans were used to create baseline models (first two years) and identify weeks with counts higher than expected using surveillance algorithms in the third (test) year. During the test year, an expert working group identified events of interest reviewing descriptive analyses of same data. The algorithms did not identify Salmonella events presenting as gradual increases or seasonal patterns as identified by the working group. However, the algorithms did identify clusters for further investigation, suggesting they could be a valuable complementary tool within an integrated surveillance system.
This study aimed to monitor the microbiological effect of cleaning near-patient sites over a 48-hour period with a novel disinfectant, electrolyzed water.
One ward dedicated to acute care of the elderly population in a district general hospital in Scotland.
Lockers, left and right cotsides, and overbed tables in 30 bed spaces were screened for aerobic colony count (ACC), methicillin-susceptible Staphylococcus aureus (MSSA), and methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) before cleaning with electrolyzed water. Sites were rescreened at varying intervals from 1 to 48 hours after cleaning. Microbial growth was quantified as colony-forming units (CFUs) per square centimeter and presence or absence of MSSA and MRSA at each site. The study was repeated 3 times at monthly intervals.
There was an early and significant reduction in average ACC (360 sampled sites) from a before-cleaning level of 4.3 to 1.65 CFU/cm2 at 1 hour after disinfectant cleaning (P <.0001). Average counts then increased to 3.53 CFU/cm2 at 24 hours and 3.68 CFU/cm2 at 48 hours. Total MSSA/MRSA (34 isolates) decreased by 71% at 4 hours after cleaning but then increased to 155% (53 isolates) of precleaning levels at 24 hours.
Cleaning with electrolyzed water reduced ACC and staphylococci on surfaces beside patients. ACC remained below precleaning levels at 48 hours, but MSSA/MRSA counts exceeded original levels at 24 hours after cleaning. Although disinfectant cleaning quickly reduces bioburden, additional investigation is required to clarify the reasons for rebound contamination of pathogens at near-patient sites.
Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol 2014;35(12):1505–1510
Attempts were made to discover the source of strains of haemolytic Escherichia coli infecting weaned pigs on a piggery. The organisms were not detected in the faeces of sows in the farrowing house, or in the in the faeces or intestinal tracts of slaughtered bacon pigs or sows. Sows held in a quarantine unit, and their offspring born in the unit, did not excrete haemolytic E. coli until after they were returned to the piggery.
The environment of the piggery was the most likely source of infection for weaned pigs, and routine cleaning and disinfection of the accommodation did not prevent infection. Unweaned pigs were however able to transfer haemolytic E. coli to a newly built, previously unused weaning house, and establish a cycle of infection.
Early worsening of anxiety, agitation and irritability are thought to be
common among people commencing antidepressants, especially for anxiety
disorders. This phenomenon, which may be termed jitteriness/anxiety
syndrome, is cited as an explanation for early treatment failure and
caution in using selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).
However, we believe that it is inconsistently defined and that robust
evidence to support the phenomenon is lacking.
To review systematically all evidence relating to jitteriness/ anxiety
syndrome to identify: constituent symptoms; medications implicated;
disorders in which it was reported; incidence; time course; management
strategies; relationship of this syndrome to therapeutic response;
distinction between syndrome and akathisia; relationship between syndrome
and suicide; and genetic predispositions.
A systematic search identified articles and these were included in the
review if they addressed one of the above aspects of jitteriness/anxiety
Of 245 articles identified, 107 articles were included for review. No
validated rating scales for jitteriness/anxiety syndrome were identified.
There was no robust evidence that the incidence differed between SSRIs
and tricyclic antidepressants, or that there was a higher incidence in
anxiety disorders. Published incidence rates varied widely from 4 to 65%
of people commencing antidepressant treatment. Common treatment
strategies for this syndrome included a slower titration of
antidepressant and the addition of benzodiazepines. Conclusive evidence
for the efficacy of these strategies is lacking. There was conflicting
and inconclusive evidence as to whether the emergence of this syndrome
had a predictive value on the response to treatment. It appears to be a
separate syndrome from akathisia, but evidence for this assertion was
limited. The effect of jitteriness/anxiety syndrome on suicide rates has
not been evaluated. Three studies examined genetic variations and
side-effects from treatment, but none was specifically designed to assess
Jitteriness/anxiety syndrome remains poorly characterised. Despite this,
clinicians' perception of this syndrome influences prescribing and it is
cited to support postulated mechanisms of drug action. We recommend
systematised evaluation of side-effects at earlier time points in
antidepressant trials to further elucidate this clinically important
Piglets between 1 and 40 days of age were inoculated with varying numbers and with different isolates of Streptococcus suis type 2 by the intranasal, intravenous and subarachnoid routes. Less than 100 organisms of an isolate cultured from apparently normal pigs caused subclinical infection in 1-day-old piglets after intranasal inoculation. This infection was naturally transmitted between litter mates. Intravenous inoculation of a similar isolate in 7-week-old pigs resulted in a sub-clinical bacteraemia in 3 of 8 piglets. One other piglet developed a bacteraemia 7 days after inoculation and concurrently developed signs of lameness and nervous dysfunction. Ten piglets were inoculated by the subarachnoid route with a porcine isolate and two with an isolate from a person with clinical disease. Only the latter two pigs developed the classical signs of nervous disease associated with infection by S. suis type 2. It is concluded that strains of S. suis type 2, of varying pathogenicity for both pigs and man, are endemic in New Zealand. It is suggested that the occurrence of disease is associated with both exposure to a pathogenic strain and other, as yet undetermined, secondary factors.
An investigation into the antibiotic sensitivity of B. abortus biotypes to polymyxin B sulphate, amphotericin B, and bacitracin has shown that the dye-sensitive strains are also antibiotic-sensitive; and preliminary experiments suggest that these two properties are not genetically related.
The results suggest that biotype 2 can be subdivided on the basis of antibiotic sensitivity pattern, and that this could be of epidemiological significance.
Investigation into the antibiotic sensitivity pattern of the dye-sensitive variant B. abortus, biotype 4, leads us to believe that this strain should be reclassified as a separate biotype and provisionally called biotype 10.
The serum antibody titres in 62 cases of acute brucellosis are presented. The antibody persisting after infection and the appearance of non-agglutinating antihuman globulin titres were investigated. The criteria for the serological diagnosis of acute and chronic brucellosis are discussed.
Oesophagus samples from 714 cattle from Western Australia were examined by artificial digestion to detect the presence of Sarcocystis spp. The overall prevalence of infection was 52%. The prevalence of infection increased with age and was highest in the entire males (92%). The prevalence was lower in cattle which originated from arid and semiarid regions (9 and 31% respectively) than those from tropical (87%) and temperate (60%) regions. possible reasons for these differences are discussed and it is concluded that environmental and management factors as well as host age and sex influence the prevalence of infection with Sarcocystis spp. in cattle.
Genetic relationships amongst 115 mainly Australian isolates of Mycobacterium avium were assessed using multilocus enzyme electrophoresis (MEE). The isolates were divided into 58 electrophoretic types (ETs), with a mean genetic diversity of 0·29. Isolates from humans were closely related to but distinct from those cultured from birds, whilst some porcine isolates belonged to the same ETs as certain human isolates. Pulsed field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) was used to differentiate related isolates, and those from birds and some from other animals, including pigs, were distinguished from the human isolates. The results of MEE and PFGE suggested that certain strains of M. avium may be transmitted between birds and pigs, but there was no clear evidence of transmission to humans. The serovar of the M. avium isolates was not obviously related to their ET assignment or their PFGE type.
In May 1992. a small, circumscribed community outbreak of infection due to verotoxin-producing Escherichia coli O157 phage type 49 occurred in a semi-rural area of south-east Scotland. On the basis of stool cultures, six cases were identified, one of whom was asymptomatic. One child developed the haemolytic uraemic syndrome. Although the source of infection of the index case was not established nor could the extent of person-to-person spread be fully determined, the clinical, microbiological and epidemiological evidence available indicated that a children's paddling pool served as the focal point in the transmission of infection causing the outbreak.
The results are presented of testing untreated producer–retailer herd milk samples for the presence of Brucella abortus during the period 1965–1972 in the North Lancashire region.
There was a steady decline in the incidence of infected herds from 22 % in 1965 to 12% in 1971. A sharp fall to 5% in 1972 suggests that the introduction of the Brucellosis Incentives Scheme and the eradication programme has helped to reduce the practice of selling brucella-infected cattle in the open market which was prevalent in the period 1965 to 1970.
This practice of selling brucella-infected cattle may also be a prime factor in the changing pattern of distribution of the biotypes of B. abortus which was observed during the period 1965 to 1970.
A comparison of the two areas in the region show that the incidence of herd infection was always greater in the area containing flying herds than in the area in which self-contained herds predominated.
Streptococcus suis types 1 and 2 were detected in nasal swabs taken from five litters of piglets sampled twice weekly from birth. The two types had been detected in all pigs by the time they were 38 and 25 days old respectively with mean ages of first detectable infection being 13·5 and 8·5 days. The prevalence of infection was not affected by housing conditions or the population density of pigs. Piglets originating from a sow with vaginal swabs positive for S. suis type 2 were infected earlier than piglets from non-vaginal carriers. It is concluded that infection of piglets with S. suis type 2 may occur during the birth process.
Multilocus enzyme electrophoresis was used to divide 124 Australian isolates of Streptococcus suis type 2 into 17 electrophoretic types (ETs). Isolates in ET 1 were the most frequent cause of disease amongst Western Australian pigs, but isolates of ET 8 were more commonly associated with disease in other Australian states. Multiple isolates from 10 of 19 farms all belonged to the same ET, whilst isolates from the other farms belonged to between 2 and 4 different ETs. Some isolates could be differentiated further by DNA restriction endonuclease analysis, whilst others with the same restriction pattern were located in different, but closely-related ETs. Fourteen isolates were tested for their virulence in mice. Most caused disease if given in high numbers, but isolates in ET 1 were virulent at lower dose rates. This virulent clone also was distinguished by the fact that 80% of isolates produced extracellular factor (EF).
Mice, rats, guinea-pigs and rabbits were inoculated with isolates of Streptococcus suis type 2. An isolate cultured from the tonsils of a healthy pig, produced disease in rabbits after intravenous inoculation but not in mice, rats or guinea-pigs. An isolate of S. suis type 2, that was pathogenic for pigs and had been cultured from a human patient with clinical disease, produced signs of neurological disease in mice, rats and rabbits following intravenous inoculation. There was an apparent dose response in mice with 31 % of mice receiving more than 106 organisms developing clinical disease, whilst mice receiving less than this did not develop disease. There were no detectable histopathological lesions in the brains or meninges of mice with nervous signs. It is proposed that the disease in mice may mimic that reported in humans and that mice may be a useful indicator species for determining the virulence of isolates cultured from pigs.