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Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are characterized by deficits in social interaction and behavioral impairments. Several studies have reported differences in white matter generalized Fractional Anisotropy (gFA) in ASD.
We studied white matter microstructural integrity in individuals with ASD.
We conducted the first DWI-based whole brain tractography study to compare gFA in 22 deep white matter tracts in first-degree relatives of individuals with ASD to controls and individuals with ASD. Futhermore, we replicated our significants results in an independant sample.
Fifty-one first-degree relatives of individuals with ASD, 29 controls and 14 individuals with ASD participated.
We performed q-ball imaging whole-brain tractography based on 1.5 T diffusion weighted MRI over 32 non-colinear directions. Then, we computed mean gFA along 22 main deep white matter tracts. A linear mixed model using group, gender, age and IQ as fixed effects and family as a random effect was used and Bonferroni correction applied. We also recruited a replication sample comprising 23 individuals with ASD and 32 controls.
We demonstrated a significantly reduced mean gFA along the left IFOF in first-degree relatives of individuals with ASD and individuals with ASD compared with controls and replicated this finding in an independant sample of patients. A decrease in mean gFA was also observed in the left CST when we compared first-degree relatives of individuals with ASD to controls (no such decrease was present in patients).
Our work suggests that structural fronto-occipital disconnectivity may be an endophenotype of ASD.
Transcatheter right ventricle decompression in neonates with pulmonary atresia and intact ventricular septum is technically challenging, with risk of cardiac perforation and death. Further, despite successful right ventricle decompression, re-intervention on the pulmonary valve is common. The association between technical factors during right ventricle decompression and the risks of complications and re-intervention are not well described.
This is a multicentre retrospective study among the participating centres of the Congenital Catheterization Research Collaborative. Between 2005 and 2015, all neonates with pulmonary atresia and intact ventricular septum and attempted transcatheter right ventricle decompression were included. Technical factors evaluated included the use and characteristics of radiofrequency energy, maximal balloon-to-pulmonary valve annulus ratio, infundibular diameter, and right ventricle systolic pressure pre- and post-valvuloplasty (BPV). The primary end point was cardiac perforation or death; the secondary end point was re-intervention.
A total of 99 neonates underwent transcatheter right ventricle decompression at a median of 3 days (IQR 2–5) of age, including 63 patients by radiofrequency and 32 by wire perforation of the pulmonary valve. There were 32 complications including 10 (10.5%) cardiac perforations, of which two resulted in death. Cardiac perforation was associated with the use of radiofrequency (p=0.047), longer radiofrequency duration (3.5 versus 2.0 seconds, p=0.02), and higher maximal radiofrequency energy (7.5 versus 5.0 J, p<0.01) but not with patient weight (p=0.09), pulmonary valve diameter (p=0.23), or infundibular diameter (p=0.57). Re-intervention was performed in 36 patients and was associated with higher post-intervention right ventricle pressure (median 60 versus 50 mmHg, p=0.041) and residual valve gradient (median 15 versus 10 mmHg, p=0.046), but not with balloon-to-pulmonary valve annulus ratio, atmospheric pressure used during BPV, or the presence of a residual balloon waist during BPV. Re-intervention was not associated with any right ventricle anatomic characteristics, including pulmonary valve diameter.
Technical factors surrounding transcatheter right ventricle decompression in pulmonary atresia and intact ventricular septum influence the risk of procedural complications but not the risk of future re-intervention. Cardiac perforation is associated with the use of radiofrequency energy, as well as radiofrequency application characteristics. Re-intervention after right ventricle decompression for pulmonary atresia and intact ventricular septum is common and relates to haemodynamic measures surrounding initial BPV.
Among the solar proxies, κ1 Cet, stands out as potentially having a mass very close to solar and a young age. We report magnetic field measurements and planetary habitability consequences around this star, a proxy of the young Sun when life arose on Earth. Magnetic strength was determined from spectropolarimetric observations and we reconstruct the large-scale surface magnetic field to derive the magnetic environment, stellar winds, and particle flux permeating the interplanetary medium around κ1 Cet. Our results show a closer magnetosphere and mass-loss rate 50 times larger than the current solar wind mass-loss rate when Life arose on Earth, resulting in a larger interaction via space weather disturbances between the stellar wind and a hypothetical young-Earth analogue, potentially affecting the habitability. Interaction of the wind from the young Sun with the planetary ancient magnetic field may have affected the young Earth and its life conditions.
Much can be learned from terrestrial planets that appear to have had the potential to be habitable, but failed to realize that potential. Mars shows evidence of a once hospitable surface environment. The reasons for its current state, and in particular its thin atmosphere and dry surface, are of great interest for what they can tell us about habitable zone planet outcomes. A main goal of the MAVEN mission is to observe Mars’ atmosphere responses to solar and space weather influences, and in particular atmosphere escape related to space weather ‘storms’ caused by interplanetary coronal mass ejections (ICMEs). Numerical experiments with a data-validated MHD model suggest how the effects of an observed moderately strong ICME compare to what happens during a more extreme event. The results suggest the kinds of solar and space weather conditions that can have evolutionary importance at a planet like Mars.
The so-called Carrington Event on September 1, 1859, is clearly the solar outburst that brought the realization to the inhabitants of Earth that weather existed in space, and that space weather was important to the rapidly developing technological infrastructure on Earth. It is important to understand not only how space weather affects our technological systems, but like the case of atmospheric weather, the possible intensity of such weather, the frequency of extreme events, and how to predict them. This paper reviews what we know about one class of extreme space weather events, the superfast arrival events, how best to compare them given our limited diagnostics in past events and even at the current time, and suggests a direction for progress in this field.
An extremely weak circularly-polarized signature was recently detected in the spectral lines of the Am star Sirius A. With a prominent positive lobe, the shape of the phase-averaged Stokes V line profile is atypical of stellar Zeeman signatures, casting doubts on its magnetic origin. We report here on ultra-deep spectropolarimetric observations of two more bright Am stars: β Uma and θ Leo. Stokes V line signatures are detected in both objects, with a shape and amplitude similar to the one observed on Sirius A. We demonstrate that the amplitude of the Stokes V line profiles depend on various line parameters (Landé factor, wavelength, depth) as expected from a Zeeman signature, confirming that extremely weak magnetic fields are likely present in a large fraction of Am stars. We suggest that the strong asymmetry of the polarized signatures, systematically observed so far in Am stars and never reported in strongly magnetic Ap stars, bears unique information about the structure and dynamics of the thin surface convective shell of Am stars.
It is now well established that a fraction of the massive (M > 8 M⊙) star population hosts strong, organised magnetic fields, most likely of fossil origin. The details of the generation and evolution of these fields are still poorly understood. The BinaMIcS project takes an important step towards the understanding of the interplay between binarity and magnetism during the stellar formation and evolution, and in particular the genesis of fossil fields, by studying the magnetic properties of close binary systems. The components of such systems are most likely formed together, at the same time and in the same environment, and can therefore help us to disentangle the role of initial conditions on the magnetic properties of the massive stars from other competing effects such as age or rotation. We present here the main scientific objectives of the BinaMIcS project, as well as preliminary results from the first year of observations from the associated ESPaDOnS and Narval spectropolarimetric surveys.
We have obtained high-quality magnetic field measurements of 19 sharp-lined B-type stars with precisely-measured N/C abundance ratios (Nieva & Przybilla 2012). Our primary goal is to test the idea (Meynet et al. 2011) that a magnetic field may explain extra drag (through the wind) on the surface rotation, thus producing more internal shear and mixing, and thus could provide an explanation for the appearance of slowly rotating N-rich main sequence B stars.
Using a new uniform sample of 824 solar and late-type stars with measured X-ray luminosities and rotation periods we have studied the relationship between rotation and stellar activity that is believed to be a probe of the underlying stellar dynamo. Using an unbiased subset of the sample we calculate the power law slope of the unsaturated regime of the activity – rotation relationship as LX / Lbol ∝ Roβ, where β = − 2.70 ± 0.13. This is inconsistent with the canonical β = − 2 slope to a confidence of 5σ and argues for an interface-type dynamo. We map out three regimes of coronal emission as a function of stellar mass and age, using the empirical saturation threshold and theoretical super-saturation thresholds. We find that the empirical saturation timescale is well correlated with the time at which stars transition from the rapidly rotating convective sequence to the slowly rotating interface sequence in stellar spin-down models. This may be hinting at fundamental changes in the underlying stellar dynamo or internal structure. We also present the first discovery of an X-ray unsaturated, fully convective M star, which may be hinting at an underlying rotation - activity relationship in fully convective stars hitherto not observed. Finally we present early results from a blind search for stellar X-ray cycles that can place valuable constraints on the underlying ubiquity of solar-like activity cycles.
We performed an observational study of the relation between the interstellar magnetic field alignment and star formation in twenty (20) sky regions containing Bok Globules. The presence of young stellar objects in the globules is verified by a search of infrared sources with spectral energy distribution compatible with a pre main-sequence star. The interstellar magnetic field direction is mapped using optical polarimetry. These maps are used to estimate the dispersion of the interstellar magnetic field direction in each region from a Gaussian fit, σB. In addition to the Gaussian dispersion, we propose a new parameter, η, to measure the magnetic field alignment that does not rely on any function fitting. Statistical tests show that the dispersion of the magnetic field direction is different in star forming globules relative to quiescent globules. Specifically, the less organised magnetic fields occur in regions having young stellar objects.
The structure and dynamics of young stellar object (YSO) accretion shocks depend strongly on the local magnetic field strength and configuration, as well as on the radiative transfer effects responsible for the energy losses. We present the first 3D YSO shock simulations of the interior of the stream, assuming a uniform background magnetic field, a clumpy infalling gas, and an acoustic energy flux flowing at the base of the chromosphere. We study the dynamical evolution and the post-shock structure as a function of the plasma-beta (thermal pressure over magnetic pressure). We find that a strong magnetic field (~hundreds of Gauss) leads to the formation of fibrils in the shocked gas due to the plasma confinement within flux tubes. The corresponding emission is smooth and fully distinguishable from the case of a weak magnetic field (~tenths of Gauss) where the hot slab demonstrates chaotic motion and oscillates periodically.
The Magnetism in Massive Stars (MiMeS) project represents the largest systematic survey of stellar magnetism ever undertaken. Based on a sample of over 550 Galactic B and O-type stars, the MiMeS project has derived the basic characteristics of magnetism in hot, massive stars. Herein we report preliminary results.
κ1 Cet (HD 20630, HIP 15457, d = 9.16 pc, V = 4.84) is a dwarf star approximately 30 light-years away in the equatorial constellation of Cetus. Among the solar proxies studied in the Sun in Time, κ1 Cet stands out as potentially having a mass very close to solar and a young age. On this study, we monitored the magnetic field and the chromospheric activity from the Ca II H & K lines of κ1 Cet. We used the technique of Least-Square-Deconvolution (LSD, Donati et al. 1997) by simultaneously extracting the information contained in all 8,000 photospheric lines of the echelogram (for a linelist matching an atmospheric model of spectral type K1). To reconstruct a reliable magnetic map and characterize the surface differential rotation of κ1 Cet we used 14 exposures spread over 2 months, in order to cover at least two rotational cycles (Prot ~9.2 days). The Least Square deconvolution (LSD) technique was applied to detect the Zeeman signature of the magnetic field in each of our 14 observations and to measure its longitudinal component. In order to reconstruct the magnetic field geometry of κ1 Cet, we applied the Zeeman Doppler Imaging (ZDI) inversion method. ZDI revealed a structure in the radial magnetic field consisting of a polar magnetic spot. On this study, we present the fisrt look results of a high-resolution spectropolarimetric campaign to characterize the activity and the magnetic fields of this young solar proxy.
We present the preliminary results of the measurements of longitudinal magnetic field of the massive white dwarf 1658+441. This star have an hydrogen pure atmosphere (e.g. Dupuis & Chayer, 2003). We have observed the target in a total of 18 hrs during 3 consecutive nights in June 2010 and one more in May 2011. The data was acquired with a prototypical spectropolarimeter at the San Pedro Martir Telescope in Mexico. We have tested the magnetic field measurements with our instrument using the famous Babcock's star obtaining consistent results with previous studies. For our object of study, the WD 1658+441, we have measured variable intensities of the longitudinal magnetic field of Blong = 720 kG that oscillates with an amplitude of 130 kG.
The dynamo process is believed to drive the magnetic activity of stars like the Sun that have an outer convection zone. Large spectroscopic surveys showed that there is a relation between the rotation periods and the cycle periods: the longer the rotation period is, the longer the magnetic activity cycle period will be. We present the analysis of F stars observed by Kepler for which individual p modes have been measure and with surface rotation periods shorter than 12 days. We defined magnetic indicators and proxies based on photometric observations to help characterise the activity levels of the stars. With the Kepler data, we investigate the existence of stars with cycles (regular or not), stars with a modulation that could be related to magnetic activity, and stars that seem to show a flat behaviour.
A subpopulation (~10%) of hot, luminous, massive stars have been revealed through spectropolarimetry to harbor strong (hundreds to tens of thousand Gauss), steady, large-scale (often significantly dipolar) magnetic fields. This review focuses on the role of such fields in channeling and trapping the radiatively driven wind of massive stars, including both in the strongly perturbed outflow from open field regions, and the wind-fed “magnetospheres” that develop from closed magnetic loops. For B-type stars with weak winds and moderately fast rotation, one finds “centrifugal magnetospheres”, in which rotational support allows magnetically trapped wind to accumulate to a large density, with quite distinctive observational signatures, e.g. in Balmer line emission. In contrast, more luminous O-type stars have generally been spun down by magnetic braking from angular momentum loss in their much stronger winds. The lack of centrifugal support means their closed loops form a “dynamical magnetosphere”, with trapped material falling back to the star on a dynamical timescale; nonetheless, the much stronger wind feeding leads to a circumstellar density that is still high enough to give substantial Balmer emission. Overall, this review describes MHD simulations and semi-analytic dynamical methods for modeling the magnetospheres, the magnetically channeled wind outflows, and the associated spin-down of these magnetic massive stars.
The surface rotation rates of young solar-type stars decrease rapidly with age from the end of the pre-main sequence though the early main sequence. This suggests that there is also an important change in the dynamos operating in these stars, which should be observable in their surface magnetic fields. Here we present early results in a study aimed at observing the evolution of these magnetic fields through this critical time period. We are observing stars in open clusters and stellar associations to provide precise ages, and using Zeeman Doppler Imaging to characterize the complex magnetic fields. Presented here are results for six stars, three in the in the β Pic association (~10 Myr old) and three in the AB Dor association (~100 Myr old).
Although barotropic matter does not constitute a realistic model for magnetic stars on short timescales, it would be interesting to confirm a recent conjecture that states that magnetized stars with a barotropic equation of state would be dynamically unstable (Reisenegger 2009). In this work we construct a set of barotropic equilibria, which can eventually be tested using a stability criterion. A general description of the ideal MHD equations governing these equilibria is summarized, allowing for both poloidal and toroidal magnetic field components. A new finite-difference numerical code is developed in order to solve the so-called Grad-Shafranov equation describing the equilibrium of these configurations, and some properties of the equilibria obtained are briefly discussed.
In A- and late B-type stars, strong magnetic fields are always associated with Ap and Bp chemical peculiarities. However, it is not clear at what point in a star's evolution those peculiarities develop. Strong magnetic fields have been observed in pre-main sequence A and B stars (Herbig Ae and Be stars), and these objects have been proposed to be the progenitors of Ap and Bp stars. However, the photospheric chemical abundances of these magnetic Herbig stars have not been studied carefully, and furthermore the chemical abundances of 'normal' non-magnetic Herbig stars remain poorly characterized. To investigate this issue, we have studied the photospheric compositions of 23 Herbig stars, four of which have confirmed magnetic fields. Surprisingly, we found that half the non-magnetic stars in our sample show λ Bootis chemical peculiarities to varying degrees. For the stars with detected magnetic fields, we find one chemically normal star, one star with λ Boo peculiarities, one star displaying weak Ap/Bp peculiarities, and one somewhat more evolved star with somewhat stronger Ap/Bp peculiarities. These results suggests that Ap/Bp peculiarities are preceded by magnetic fields, and that these peculiarities develop over the pre-main sequence lives of A and B stars. The incidence of λ Boo stars we find is much higher than that seen on the main sequence. We argue that a selective accretion model for the formation of λ Boo peculiarities is a natural explanation for this remarkably large incidence.
Spectropolarimetric observations combined with tomographic imaging techniques have revealed that all pre-main sequence (PMS) stars host multipolar magnetic fields, ranging from strong and globally axisymmetric with ≳kilo-Gauss dipole components, to complex and non-axisymmetric with weak dipole components (≲0.1 kG). Many host dominantly octupolar large-scale fields. We argue that the large-scale magnetic properties of a PMS star are related to its location in the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram. This conference paper is a synopsis of Gregory et al. (2012), updated to include the latest results from magnetic mapping studies of PMS stars.