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The farrowing process is one of the most energy-demanding activities for the modern hyperprolific sow. This study evaluated the effects of supply of energy on the expected date of farrowing on the farrowing kinetics and piglets’ performance during the first 24 h after birth. A total of 80 sows were used. The sows and their respective litters were considered as the experimental unit. On the expected day of farrowing, the sows were allocated to one of the following groups: sows that did not have access to feed from farrowing induction until the end of the farrowing process (CON, n = 40); sows fed 500 g of energetic supplement, which consisted of 250 g of the basal lactation diet plus 250 g of cane sugar, 18 h after farrowing induction (SUP, n = 40). The farrowing duration, farrowing assistance, birth interval, number of total born, stillborn and mummified piglets were recorded for each sow. Piglets were weighed individually at birth and 24 h later. The interval from birth to first suckle was evaluated individually for each piglet in 16 randomly selected litters (eight litters per treatment group). Blood glucose concentrations of six sows were measured shortly after expulsion of the first piglet. Farrowing duration, farrowing assistance and stillborn rate tended to be greater (P = 0.06, P = 0.09 and P = 0.07, respectively) in sows from the CON group compared to sows from the SUP group. However, there was no difference (P > 0.05) between the groups for birth interval. Colostrum intake was greater (P < 0.05) for piglets from the SUP group compared to piglets from the CON group. Additionally, BW gain of the piglets suckling the SUP group was greater (P < 0.05) than those suckling the CON group at 24 h after birth. The blood glucose concentrations during the expulsive stage of farrowing were greater (P < 0.05) in the SUP group than for sows from the CON group. In conclusion, supplying modern hyperprolific sows energy on the expected day of farrowing is a valuable nutritional intervention to improve the farrowing kinetics and piglets’ performance in early life.
This study was designed to verify whether fluoxetine (FL), a serotonin (5-HT) re-uptake inhibitor, would interfere with nortriptyline (NT), a biphasic U-shaped curvilinear dose-response relationship recently described in our laboratory. We associated 10 mg/kg NT or vehicle to 0, 5, 10, 20 and 40 mg/kg FL, in one group, and 10 mg FL or vehicle to 0, 5, 10, 20 and 40 mg/kg NT, in another group, 30 min before the tail suspension test (TST) in mice. Although we were not able to confirm a synergistic effect between FL and NT, FL-NT association seems to require higher doses of NT to block its own anti-immobility effect at high doses, thus widening NT effective antidepressant-like dose range in mice submitted to TST.
We studied circadian thyrotropin (TSH) and prolactin (PRL) response to synthetic thyrotropin-releasing-hormone (protirelin) infusion (200μg IV) at 8 am and 11 pm in 35 drug-free inpatients with DSM III-R Major Depressive Episode and in 22 hospitalized controls. In each group, maximum TSH and PRL responses were lower at 8 am than at 11 pm. The difference between 11 pm-ΔTSH and 8 am-ΔJTSH (ΔΔTSH) was significantly lower in depressed patients compared to controls. No such blunting was observed in PRL responses to protirelin in depressed patients. In the overall population, TSH response to protirelin (ie8 am-ΔTSH, 11 pm-ΔTSH, ΔΔTSH) correlated significantly with TSH circadian parameters (ie mesor and amplitude). These correlations were also observed with PRL (except for ΔΔPRL). TSH mesor and amplitude were lower in depressives than in controls. In contrast, PRL mesor and amplitude were not significantly different between diagnostic groups. ΔΔTSH is thus a chronobiological refinement to the measure of thyroid axis dysfunction in major depression. The blunted TSH response to protirelin suggests that the TRH receptors of the pituitary thyrotrophs are hyposensitive in major depression.
The house mouse (Mus musculus) and the black rat (Rattus rattus) are reservoir hosts for zoonotic pathogens, several of which cause neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). Studies of the prevalence of these NTD-causing zoonotic pathogens, in house mice and black rats from tropical residential areas are scarce. Three hundred and two house mice and 161 black rats were trapped in 2013 from two urban neighbourhoods and a rural village in Yucatan, Mexico, and subsequently tested for Trypanosoma cruzi, Hymenolepis diminuta and Leptospira interrogans. Using the polymerase chain reaction we detected T. cruzi DNA in the hearts of 4·9% (8/165) and 6·2% (7/113) of house mice and black rats, respectively. We applied the sedimentation technique to detect eggs of H. diminuta in 0·5% (1/182) and 14·2% (15/106) of house mice and black rats, respectively. Through the immunofluorescent imprint method, L. interrogans was identified in 0·9% (1/106) of rat kidney impressions. Our results suggest that the black rat could be an important reservoir for T. cruzi and H. diminuta in the studied sites. Further studies examining seasonal and geographical patterns could increase our knowledge on the epidemiology of these pathogens in Mexico and the risk to public health posed by rodents.
An estimated 50 tons of mercury (Hg) have been emitted by gold miners in the Bento Gomes river basin, in the municipality of Poconé, Brazil, since the 1980s. Since the mid-l990s, the state agency for environmental protection, FEMA (Fundação Estadual do Meio Ambiente de Mato Grosso), has enforced regulations to reduce Hg emissions to air and water and has also implemented an environmental assessment program. The objectives of this study were to evaluate efforts to reduce emissions of Hg to air and water from nine improved amalgamation centers, and to assess the pollution level in sediment at 25 sites around Poconé. In spite of the fact that retorts were used, results showed large emissions of Hg when burning amalgam, resulting in Hg air concentrations above the limit for occupational air (50 μg/m3) at all centers except one. Keeping washing water in closed systems and dumping residues in specially prepared sites reduced Hg emissions to watercourses. The average Hg concentration of fine sediments (<74 μm) in the Bento Gomes river basin was 104 ng Hg/g dry weight, three to four times higher than the background level; large amounts of Hg-contaminated sediments are re-suspended during the rainy season. In conclusion, present emissions to local watercourses have been efficiently reduced, but the use of retorts in improved amalgamation centers has not adequately reduced Hg emissions to air, which is why the use of Hg remains an occupational and environmental problem.
The dependence of the hole density on that of Mn sites in Ga1−xMnxAs is studied within a mean-field approach to the hole-mediated ferromagnetism in III-V Mn-based semiconductor compounds. We parametrize the hole concentration, p, as a function of the fraction of Mn sites, x, in terms of the product m* (Jpd)2 (where m* is the hole effective mass and Jpd is the Kondo-like hole/local-moment coupling), and the critical temperature Tc. By fitting m* (Jpd)2 to experimental data for Tc(x), we establish the dependence of p on x, which is interpreted in terms of a reentrant metal-insulator transition taking place in the hole gas.
Fifty-six half-sib families of perennial ryegrass
(Lolium perenne), derived from wild populations in
Galicia, were examined for the presence of perennial
ryegrass endophytes; 28 were endophyte-infected (E+) and 28 were
endophyte-free (E−). All families were established in spaced-plant
nurseries and trial plots at two locations in Galicia, in 1992.
E+ families had a significantly (P<0·05) higher first
cut, spring and total yield than E− families at one
location in the third year after
planting. At this location, water deficit was about 75%
higher than at the other location in all three
years of study. Endophyte did not affect crown rust
susceptibility or forage quality (crude protein,
water-soluble carbohydrate and in vitro digestibility).
Ergovaline alkaloid concentration in the 28 E+
families varied from 0 to 0·55 μg/g dry matter (DM)
(mean 0·15), with 14 families containing levels
of ergovaline >0·1 μg/g DM. Thus endophyte infection
may benefit the host in drought-prone areas
of Galicia, with an increased chance of E+ plants being favoured by
either natural or artificial selection.
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