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Background: As with other specialties, Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (RCPSC) trainees in Neurosurgery have anecdotally had challenges securing full-time employment. This study presents the employment status, research pursuits, and fellowship choices of neurosurgery trainees in Canadian programs. Methods: RCPSC neurosurgery trainees (n = 143) who began their residency training between 1998 and 2008 were included in this study. Associations between year of residency completion, research pursuits, and fellowship choice with career outcomes were determined by Fisher’s exact test (p < 0.05, statistical significance). Results: In 2015, 60% and 26% of neurosurgery trainees had permanent positions in Canada and the USA, respectively. Underemployment, defined as locum and clinical associate positions, pursuit of multiple unrelated fellowships, unemployment, and career change to non-surgical career, was 12% in 2015. The proportion of neurosurgery trainees who had been underemployed at some point within 5 years since residency completion was 20%. Pursuit of in-folded research (MSc, PhD, or non-degree research greater than 1 year) was significantly associated with obtaining full employment (94% vs. 73%, p = 0.011). However, fellowship training was not significantly associated with obtaining full employment (78% vs. 75%, p = 1.000). Conclusions: Underemployment in neurosurgery has become a significant issue in Canada for various reasons. Pursuit of in-folded research, but not fellowship training, was associated with obtaining full employment.
This study assessed bioavailability and utilisation of vitamin D3 in two feeding trials using young, growing Sprague–Dawley male rats. Trial one fed animals standard AIN-93G diet (casein protein) containing no vitamin D3 and goat or cow skimmed milk supplemented with vitamin D3. Trial two fed animals modified dairy-free AIN-93G diet (egg albumin) containing no vitamin D3 and goat or cow skimmed or full-fat milk supplemented with vitamin D3. Control groups received AIN-93G diets with or without vitamin D, and water. At 8 weeks of age, blood samples were collected for vitamin and mineral analysis, and femurs and spines were collected for assessment of bone mineralisation and strength. In both trials, analyses showed differences in bioavailability of vitamin D3, with ratios of serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 to vitamin D3 intake more than 2-fold higher in groups drinking supplemented milk compared with groups fed supplemented solid food. Bone mineralisation was higher in groups drinking supplemented milk compared with groups fed supplemented solid food, for both trials (P<0·05). There was no difference in the parameters tested between skimmed milk and full-fat milk or between cow milk and goat milk. Comparison of the two trials suggested that dietary protein source promoted bone mineralisation in a growing rat model: modified AIN-93G with egg albumin produced lower bone mineralisation compared with standard AIN-93G with casein. Overall, this study showed that effects of vitamin D3 deficiency in solid diets were reversed by offering milk supplemented with vitamin D3, and suggests that using milk as a vehicle to deliver vitamin D is advantageous.
Dietary fatty acids have been shown to affect the activity of the immune system in a variety of species through eicosanoid dependent or independent mechanisms (Miles 1998, Calder 2001). MLN and spleen are lymphoid tissues which play a key role in the immune function. Changing the fatty acid composition of these tissues could change the profile of eicosanoid produced by immune cells in these tissues and this could alter the immune response. This study was carried out to establish the extent to which different oil supplements could change the fatty acid composition of MLN and spleen in milk fed calves.
Infection by parasites is a major cause of production losses and mortality in young calves. The problem is most prevalent during the first grazing season (Armour, 1989). Eosinophils are important cellular mediators in immunity to gastrointestinal parasites (Baker et al, 1993), but during an extreme hypersensitivity immune response, degranulating eosinophils may lead to tissue pathology which may favour parasite survival (Miller, 1996). Dietary polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) influence the fatty acid composition of immune tissues and cells (Jaffrey, 1998). n-6 and n-3 fatty acids are known to influence various components of immune response via eicosanoid dependent or independent mechanisms which influence the relative proportions of Th1 and Th2 cytokines, including IL-5 an important regulator of eosinophils maturation and recruitment. This study was carried out to establish the extent to which dietary n-6 or n-3 PUFA source affects the numbers of eosinophils in the gut of calves.
In pre-ruminant calves the oesophageal groove reflex allows milk to bypass the developing rumen and is a mechanism by which dietary fatty acids can be delivered directly to the small intestine. This experiment was a pilot study carried out to establish the extent and time course of the changes in plasma fatty acid composition in calves fed milk supplemented with oils of differing fatty acid composition and allowed minimal access to roughage (straw bedding). The work was carried out to provide baseline data for a longer study with calves in which rumen development will be encouraged by feeding solid food but the oesophageal groove reflex will be maintained through long term milk feeding and used as a means of delivering polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) directly to the small intestine.
Dietary fatty acids have been shown to affect the activity of the immune system in a variety of species (Calder, 1998) although the exact mechanism by which they influence the nature of the immune response is unclear. The effect of dietary fatty acids on the fatty acid composition of intestinal mucosa is important since this tissue has a rapid turn over and is a major site of antigenic exposure and immune defence. The speed with which changes in dietary fatty acid intake are reflected in the fatty acid composition of cells and tissue of the body varies. In ruminants the development of a functional rumen greatly influences the nature of the fatty acids available for absorption from the small intestine, however, in pre-ruminant animals, milk may be used as a medium to supplement the diet with specific dietary fatty acids. This work was carried out to establish the extent to which different oil supplements could change the fatty acid composition of intestinal mucosa in milk fed pre-ruminant calves.
The balance between pro and anti-inflammatory elements of the immune system can be influenced by provision of specific dietary polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) (Calder, 1998). The gut associated lymphoid tissue (GALT) is the largest immune organ and an important regulator of tolerance and sensitivity to dietary and environmental antigens in the gut (Harbige and Fisher, 2001). Changing the fatty acid composition of the gut mucosa could influence the immune function of the GALT. This study was carried out to establish the extent to which dietary n-3 or n-6 PUFA-rich oil supplements could change the fatty acid composition of gut mucosa of the neonatal calf.
The efficiency and rate of microbial protein synthesis in the rumen depend on several factors, of which the chemical and physical properties of the plant fibre are among the most important. Estimation of microbial yield and fermentation rate can be obtained from in vitro experiments, which combine gas production and substrate degradability measurements and/or use microbial markers. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of different fibre sources on microbial protein synthesis in a batch culture system in vitro.
Dietary polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) are known to influence the fatty acid composition of immune and inflammatory cell membranes (Yaqoob et al, 1995). Changing the fatty acid composition and the n-6/n-3 PUFA ratio of cell membranes has been reported to have profound effects on immune cell functionality (Blok et al, 1996). Immune responses to Cooperia onchophara, a nematode parasite that infects calves, are usually slow to develop and inappropriate. The aim of this experiment was to establish the extent to which supplementation of pre-ruminant calves with an n-6 or n-3 PUFA source may influence ex-vivo lymphocyte response to an L3 C onchophara antigen.
Cover crop–based, organic rotational no-till (CCORNT) corn and soybean systems have been developed in the mid-Atlantic region to build soil health, increase management flexibility, and reduce labor. In this system, a roller-crimped cover crop mulch provides within-season weed suppression in no-till corn and soybean. A cropping system experiment was conducted in Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Delaware to test the cumulative effects of a multitactic weed management approach in a 3-yr hairy vetch/triticale–corn–cereal rye–soybean–winter wheat CCORNT rotation. Treatments included delayed planting dates (early, intermediate, late) and supplemental weed control using high-residue (HR) cultivation in no-till corn and soybean phases. In the no-till corn phase, HR cultivation decreased weed biomass relative to the uncultivated control by 58%, 23%, and 62% in Delaware, Maryland, and Pennsylvania, respectively. In the no-till soybean phase, HR cultivation decreased weed biomass relative to the uncultivated treatment planted in narrow rows (19 to 38 cm) by 20%, 41%, and 78% in Delaware, Maryland, and Pennsylvania, respectively. Common ragweed was more dominant in soybean (39% of total biomass) compared with corn (10% of total biomass), whereas giant foxtail and smooth pigweed were more dominant in corn, comprising 46% and 22% of total biomass, respectively. Common ragweed became less abundant as corn and soybean planting dates were delayed, whereas giant foxtail and smooth pigweed increased as a percentage of total biomass as planting dates were delayed. At the Pennsylvania location, inconsistent termination of cover crops with the roller-crimper resulted in volunteer cover crops in other phases of the rotation. Our results indicate that HR cultivation is necessary to achieve adequate weed control in CCORNT systems. Integration of winter grain or perennial forages into CCORNT systems will also be an important management tactic for truncating weed seedbank population increases.
Development of a catalogue of approximately 100 radio sources having positional accuracy of ~0.005 arcseconds is one goal of the DSN radio reference frame program. This objective is set by the navigation requirements of the Galileo Project for reconstruction of the probe entry angle into the atmosphere of Jupiter. These radio positions are determined by VLBI observations using the antennas of the NASA Deep Space Network on two intercontinental baselines – California-Spain and California-Australia. Since 1978, measurements have been made simultaneously at 2.3 and 8.4 Ghz. Sixteen to twenty-four hours of data on each of the two baselines are usually obtained within a few days of each other, and since mid-1982 these pairs of observations have been made at approximately six week intervals.
Development of a radio reference frame of very high accuracy has become necessary in order to obtain the required accuracy in spacecraft navigation for current and future planetary missions. The antennas of the NASA Deep Space Network are being utilized on a regular basis to obtain the positions of over 100 compact extragalactic radio sources distributed over the sky down to a declination of −45 degrees with uncertainties of less than 0.005 arcseconds.
The problem of understanding the deformation occurring along the Pacific-North American plate boundary in the western United States depends upon understanding the forces which drive the plates in this region. One of the primary sources of our knowledge concerning these forces lies in their manifestation as relative displacements which occur throughout the broad zone of deformation surrounding the San Andreas fault system. It is information concerning the spatial and temporal distribution of these motions which will be of greatest benefit in helping to determine which of several possible mechanisms is responsible for driving contemporary plate motions in this region.
This study was undertaken to further develop our understanding of the links between breed, diet and the rumen microbial community and determine their effect on production characteristics and methane (CH4) emissions from beef cattle. The experiment was of a 2×2 factorial design, comprising two breeds (crossbred Charolais (CHX); purebred Luing (LU)) and two diets (concentrate-straw or silage-based). In total, 80 steers were used and balanced for sire within each breed, farm of origin and BW across diets. The diets (fed as total mixed rations) consisted of (g/kg dry matter (DM)) forage to concentrate ratios of either 500 : 500 (Mixed) or 79 : 921 (Concentrate). Steers were adapted to the diets over a 4-week period and performance and feed efficiency were then measured over a 56-day test period. Directly after the 56-day test, CH4 and carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions were measured (six steers/week) over a 13-week period. Compared with LU steers, CHX steers had greater average daily gain (ADG; P<0.05) and significantly (P<0.001) lower residual feed intake. Crossbred Charolais steers had superior conformation and fatness scores (P<0.001) than LU steers. Although steers consumed, on a DM basis, more Concentrate than Mixed diet (P<0.01), there were no differences between diets in either ADG or feed efficiency during the 56-day test. At slaughter, however, Concentrate-fed steers were heavier (P<0.05) and had greater carcass weights than Mixed-fed steers (P<0.001). Breed of steer did not influence CH4 production, but it was substantially lower when the Concentrate rather than Mixed diet was fed (P<0.001). Rumen fluid from Concentrate-fed steers contained greater proportions of propionic acid (P<0.001) and lower proportions of acetic acid (P<0.001), fewer archaea (P<0.01) and protozoa (P=0.09), but more Clostridium Cluster XIVa (P<0.01) and Bacteroides plus Prevotella (P<0.001) than Mixed-fed steers. When the CH4 to CO2 molar ratio was considered as a proxy method for CH4 production (g/kg DM intake), only weak relationships were found within diets. In conclusion, although feeding Concentrate and Mixed diets produced substantial differences in CH4 emissions and rumen characteristics, differences in performance were influenced more markedly by breed.
The radiocarbon dating of volcanic ash (tephra) deposits in New Zealand has been difficult on sites remote from the eruption, which contain either little carbon or degraded and contaminated charcoal. Although many studies of contamination removal from macroscopic charcoals from tephra sequences have been made, little attention has been paid to those containing no visible charcoal, because of the difficulty of obtaining sufficient carbon for radiometric dating. We report here experiments using accelerator mass spectrometry to establish a reliable method for dating a low-carbon aeolian and peat deposit containing a tephra horizon. Results so far demonstrate that improvements to existing chemical pretreatment methods are possible, and that dates obtained on oxidized fine-grained residues can approach the maximum age determined on good quality charred wood samples.
14C measured in trace gases in clean air helps to determine the sources of such gases, their long-range transport in the atmosphere, and their exchange with other carbon cycle reservoirs. In order to separate sources, transport and exchange, it is necessary to interpret measurements using models of these processes. We present atmospheric 14CO2 measurements made in New Zealand since 1954 and at various Pacific Ocean sites for shorter periods. We analyze these for latitudinal and seasonal variation, the latter being consistent with a seasonally varying exchange rate between the stratosphere and troposphere. The observed seasonal cycle does not agree with that predicted by a zonally averaged global circulation model. We discuss recent accelerator mass spectrometry measurements of atmospheric 14CH4 and the problems involved in determining the fossil fuel methane source. Current data imply a fossil carbon contribution of ca 25%, and the major sources of uncertainty in this number are the uncertainty in the nuclear power source of 14CH4, and in the measured value for δ14C in atmospheric methane.
Distribution profiles of radiocarbon in dissolved inorganic carbonate have been measured along two transects in the southern Pacific, east of New Zealand. Use of accelerator mass spectrometry, with its small-sample-size capability, made it possible to sample near-surface waters with a depth resolution of a few tens of meters. Sampling of deeper water was guided by salinity and temperature data transmitted by a conductivity-temperature-depth probe. The measurements, taken over the Chatham Rise, show highly structured profiles that can be correlated with known circulation patterns in this region.
The dating of alluvial deposits is frequently hampered by a lack of good-quality charcoal or other material for radiocarbon samples. We have dated two sites in southeastern Australia using traditional radiometric methods with minimal pretreatment. Results yielded an inconsistent chronology, affected by contamination with younger humic materials. A more consistent and older chronology was achieved using AMS dating of rigorously pretreated samples of fine-grained charcoal. The results have important implications for the radiocarbon dating of many Late Quaternary stratigraphic sequences with low charcoal abundance.