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Predicting breed-specific environmental suitability has been problematic in livestock production. Native breeds have low productivity but are thought to be more robust to perform under local conditions than exotic breeds. Attempts to introduce genetically improved exotic breeds are generally unsuccessful, mainly due to the antagonistic environmental conditions. Knowledge of the environmental conditions that are shaping the breed would be needed to determine its suitability to different locations. Here, we present a methodology to predict the suitability of breeds for different agro-ecological zones using Geographic Information Systems tools and predictive habitat distribution models. This methodology was tested on the current distribution of two introduced chicken breeds in Ethiopia: the Koekoek, originally from South Africa, and the Fayoumi, originally from Egypt. Cross-validation results show this methodology to be effective in predicting breed suitability for specific environmental conditions. Furthermore, the model predicts suitable areas of the country where the breeds could be introduced. The specific climatic parameters that explained the potential distribution of each of the breeds were similar to the environment from which the breeds originated. This novel methodology finds application in livestock programs, allowing for a more informed decision when designing breeding programs and introduction programs, and increases our understanding of the role of the environment in livestock productivity.
Early, conforming antibiotic treatment in elderly patients hospitalised for community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) is a key factor in the prognosis and mortality. The objective was to examine whether empirical antibiotic treatment was conforming according to the Spanish Society of Pulmonology and Thoracic Surgery guidelines in these patients. Multicentre study in patients aged ⩾65 years hospitalised due to CAP in the 2013–14 and 2014–15 influenza seasons. We collected socio-demographic information, comorbidities, influenza/pneumococcal vaccination history and antibiotics administered using a questionnaire and medical records. Bivariate analyses and multilevel logistic regression were made. In total, 1857 hospitalised patients were included, 82 of whom required intensive care unit (ICU) admission. Treatment was conforming in 51.4% (95% confidence interval (CI) 49.1–53.8%) of patients without ICU admission and was associated with absence of renal failure without haemodialysis (odds ratio (OR) 1.49, 95% CI 1.15–1.95) and no cognitive dysfunction (OR 1.71, 95% CI 1.25–2.35), when the effect of the autonomous community was controlled for. In patients with ICU admission, treatment was conforming in 45.1% (95% CI 34.1–56.1%) of patients and was associated with the hospital visits in the last year (<3 vs. ⩾3, OR 2.70, 95% CI 1.03–7.12) and there was some evidence that this was associated with season. Although the reference guidelines are national, wide variability between autonomous communities was found. In patients hospitalised due to CAP, health services should guarantee the administration of antibiotics in a consensual manner that is conforming according to clinical practice guidelines.
The reduced fertility that is becoming more evident in high yielding dairy cows may be related to many factors including changes in milk production, food intake and fluctuations in body condition. Metabolic and production markers have been studied as a way of predicting success to a particular artificial insemination. Successful conception to a particular service was not associated with milk production, body condition or plasma concentrations of several indicators of metabolic state around the time if insemination. This highlights the importance of time of information collection in fertility management programmes. Increased food intake may reduce systemic progesterone concentrations. This is more evident in sheep than cattle, but a positive relationship between systemic progesterone early post mating and establishment of pregnancy in cattle has been reported. However, progesterone concentrations in the ovarian vein and endometrium are not strongly correlated with systemic progesterone. Thus, the significance of modest changes in systemic progesterone in affecting oocyte and embryo development must be questioned. Blood urea concentrations can be altered by diet, and reduced pregnancy rates have been reported in cows with high urea concentrations. However, in other recent studies, no difference was reported in serum urea in cows that conceived and those that failed to conceive. Pregnancy rate was equally high in heifers when in-vitro produced embryos were transferred to heifers on high and low urea diets. When embryos were produced in sheep on high and low dietary urea, the effects on embryo development appear to occur early in the developmental process, suggesting a substantial effect on the development of the oocyte. The developmental capacity of oocytes and quality of embryos is reduced in cattle maintained on extremely high dietary intakes. Oocyte developmental capacity is reduced in cows of higher genetic merit and embryo quality can be substantially reduced in the early postpartum period. Collectively, these results suggest that high dietary intake or high metabolic load is deleterious to normal oocyte development and establishment of pregnancy. This highlights the importance of further studies on the effect of dietary intake on metabolic state and follicle, oocyte and embryo development. In a practical context, these results highlight the importance of nutritional management and avoiding changes in the amount or type of diet around the time of mating in high-production dairy cows.
Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is characterized by problems in regulating attention and in suppressing disruptive motor activity, i.e. hyperactivity and impulsivity. We recently found evidence that aberrant distribution of posterior α band oscillations (8–12 Hz) is associated with attentional problems in ADHD. The sensorimotor cortex also produces strong 8–12 Hz band oscillations, namely the μ rhythm, and is thought to have a similar inhibitory function. Here, we now investigate whether problems in distributing α band oscillations in ADHD generalize to the μ rhythm in the sensorimotor domain.
In a group of adult ADHD (n = 17) and healthy control subjects (n = 18; aged 21–40 years) oscillatory brain activity was recorded using magnetoencephalography during a visuo-spatial attention task. Subjects had to anticipate a target with unpredictable timing and respond by pressing a button.
Preparing a motor response, the ADHD group failed to increase hemispheric μ lateralization with relatively higher μ power in sensorimotor regions not engaged in the task, as the controls did (F1,33 = 8.70, p = 0.006). Moreover, the ADHD group pre-response μ lateralization not only correlated positively with accuracy (rs = 0.64, p = 0.0052) and negatively with intra-individual reaction time variability (rs = −0.52, p = 0.033), but it also correlated negatively with the score on an ADHD rating scale (rs = −0.53, p = 0.028).
We suggest that ADHD is associated with an inability to sufficiently inhibit task-irrelevant sensorimotor areas by means of modulating μ oscillatory activity. This could explain disruptive motor activity in ADHD. These results provide further evidence that impaired modulation of α band oscillations is involved in the pathogenesis of ADHD.
The perspective of statistical state dynamics (SSD) has recently been applied to the study of mechanisms underlying turbulence in a variety of physical systems. An SSD is a dynamical system that evolves a representation of the statistical state of the system. An example of an SSD is the second-order cumulant closure referred to as stochastic structural stability theory (S3T), which has provided insight into the dynamics of wall turbulence, and specifically the emergence and maintenance of the roll/streak structure. S3T comprises a coupled set of equations for the streamwise mean and perturbation covariance, in which nonlinear interactions among the perturbations has been removed, restricting nonlinearity in the dynamics to that of the mean equation and the interaction between the mean and perturbation covariance. In this work, this quasi-linear restriction of the dynamics is used to study the structure and dynamics of turbulence in plane Poiseuille flow at moderately high Reynolds numbers in a closely related dynamical system, referred to as the restricted nonlinear (RNL) system. Simulations using this RNL system reveal that the essential features of wall-turbulence dynamics are retained. Consistent with previous analyses based on the S3T version of SSD, the RNL system spontaneously limits the support of its turbulence to a small set of streamwise Fourier components, giving rise to a naturally minimal representation of its turbulence dynamics. Although greatly simplified, this RNL turbulence exhibits natural-looking structures and statistics, albeit with quantitative differences from those in direct numerical simulations (DNS) of the full equations. Surprisingly, even when further truncation of the perturbation support to a single streamwise component is imposed, the RNL system continues to self-sustain turbulence with qualitatively realistic structure and dynamic properties. RNL turbulence at the Reynolds numbers studied is dominated by the roll/streak structure in the buffer layer and similar very large-scale structure (VLSM) in the outer layer. In this work, diagnostics of the structure, spectrum and energetics of RNL and DNS turbulence are used to demonstrate that the roll/streak dynamics supporting the turbulence in the buffer and logarithmic layer is essentially similar in RNL and DNS.
The invariants of the velocity gradient tensor,
, and their enstrophy and strain components are studied in the logarithmic layer of an incompressible turbulent channel flow. The velocities are filtered in the three spatial directions and the results are analysed at different scales. We show that the
plane does not capture the changes undergone by the flow as the filter width increases, and that the enstrophy/enstrophy-production and strain/strain-production planes represent better choices. We also show that the conditional mean trajectories may differ significantly from the instantaneous behaviour of the flow since they are the result of an averaging process where the mean is 3–5 times smaller than the corresponding standard deviation. The orbital periods in the
plane are shown to be independent of the intensity of the events, and of the same order of magnitude as those in the enstrophy/enstrophy-production and strain/strain-production planes. Our final goal is to test whether the dynamics of the flow is self-similar in the inertial range, and the answer turns out to be that it is not. The mean shear is found to be responsible for the absence of self-similarity and progressively controls the dynamics of the eddies observed as the filter width increases. However, a self-similar behaviour emerges when the calculations are repeated for the fluctuating velocity gradient tensor. Finally, the turbulent cascade in terms of vortex stretching is considered by computing the alignment of the vorticity at a given scale with the strain at a different one. These results generally support a non-negligible role of the phenomenological energy-cascade model formulated in terms of vortex stretching.
The new generation of energy-dispersive X-ray (EDX) detectors with higher count rates than ever before, paves the way for a new approach to quantitative elemental analysis in the scanning transmission electron microscope. Here we demonstrate a method of calculating partial cross sections for use in quantifying EDX data, beneficial especially because of the simplicity of its implementation. Applying this approach to acid-leached PtCo catalyst nanoparticles leads to quantitative determination of the Pt surface enrichment.
The specific aim of this study was to analyze the psychometric properties of the English version of the Health-Related Quality of Life for Drug Abusers Test (HRQoLDA Test) applying the Rasch model, and emphasizing fit between empirical data and theoretical Rasch model assumptions; item(s) category probability curve; and precision in terms of information function. In this study, the authors present the results of the translation and adaptation of the original Spanish version to English, as applied to a sample of substance users in Australia. The authors evaluated 121 adults recruited from inpatient and outpatient treatment facilities in Sydney, Australia. The Rating Scale Model was used in the psychometric analysis of the English version of the HRQoLDA Test. The items and persons revealed a fit between the reported data and the model. It was also demonstrated that respondents did not discriminate among the five response categories, which led to a reduction to three response categories. The adaptation of the TECVASP to the English language, renamed the HRQoLDA test, as developed with an Australian sample revealed adequate psychometric properties.
The dietary inflammatory index (DII) is a new tool to assess the inflammatory potential of the diet. In the present study, we aimed to determine the association between the DII and BMI, waist circumference and waist:height ratio (WHtR). We conducted a cross-sectional study of 7236 participants recruited into the PREvención con DIeta MEDiterránea trial. Information from a validated 137-item FFQ was used to calculate energy, food and nutrient intakes. A fourteen-item dietary screener was used to assess adherence to the Mediterranean diet (MeDiet). Sex-specific multivariable linear regression models were fitted to estimate differences (and 95 % CI) in BMI, waist circumference and WHtR across the quintiles of the DII. All nutrient intakes, healthy foods and adherence to the MeDiet were higher in the quintile with the lowest DII score (more anti-inflammatory values) except for intakes of animal protein, saturated fat and monounsaturated fat. Although an inverse association between the DII and total energy was apparent, the DII was associated with higher average BMI, waist circumference and WHtR after adjusting for known risk factors. The adjusted difference in the WHtR for women and men between the highest and lowest quintiles of the DII was 1·60 % (95 % CI 0·87, 2·33) and 1·04 % (95 % CI 0·35, 1·74), respectively. Pro-inflammatory scores remained associated with obesity after controlling for the effect that adherence to a MeDiet had on inflammation. In conclusion, the present study shows a direct association between the DII and indices of obesity, and supports the hypothesis that diet may have a role in the development of obesity through inflammatory modulation mechanisms.
This paper summarizes influenza activity in the European Union/European Economic Area (EU/EEA) in 2012–2013. The influenza season 2012–2013 in Europe lasted from early December to late April. Overall the severity of the season could be described as moderate, based on the ILI/ARI consultation rates and the percentage of sentinel specimens positive for influenza compared to previous seasons. Both influenza A and B viruses circulating accounted for 47% and 53% of positive sentinel specimens, respectively, with both A(H1) and A(H3) varying for dominance. Compared to outpatients, the proportion of laboratory-confirmed influenza hospitalized cases infected by A(H1N1)pdm09 was significantly higher in middle-aged patients (33% vs. 17%, χ2 = 66·6, P < 0·01). Despite a relatively good match between vaccine and circulating strains, vaccine effectiveness was estimated to be moderate.
In this paper, a vision-based scheme for the autonomous hovering of a miniature quad-rotor is developed. Cameras are used to estimate the position and the translational velocity of the vehicle. The dynamic model of the miniature quad-rotor is developed using the Newton–Euler approach. A nonlinear controller based on a separated saturation control strategy for a miniature quad-rotor is presented. To validate the theoretical results, an embedded control system for the miniature quad-rotor has been developed. Thus, the analytic results are supported by experimental tests. Experimental results have validated the proposed control strategy.