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The COllaborative project of Development of Anthropometrical measures in Twins (CODATwins) project is a large international collaborative effort to analyze individual-level phenotype data from twins in multiple cohorts from different environments. The main objective is to study factors that modify genetic and environmental variation of height, body mass index (BMI, kg/m2) and size at birth, and additionally to address other research questions such as long-term consequences of birth size. The project started in 2013 and is open to all twin projects in the world having height and weight measures on twins with information on zygosity. Thus far, 54 twin projects from 24 countries have provided individual-level data. The CODATwins database includes 489,981 twin individuals (228,635 complete twin pairs). Since many twin cohorts have collected longitudinal data, there is a total of 1,049,785 height and weight observations. For many cohorts, we also have information on birth weight and length, own smoking behavior and own or parental education. We found that the heritability estimates of height and BMI systematically changed from infancy to old age. Remarkably, only minor differences in the heritability estimates were found across cultural–geographic regions, measurement time and birth cohort for height and BMI. In addition to genetic epidemiological studies, we looked at associations of height and BMI with education, birth weight and smoking status. Within-family analyses examined differences within same-sex and opposite-sex dizygotic twins in birth size and later development. The CODATwins project demonstrates the feasibility and value of international collaboration to address gene-by-exposure interactions that require large sample sizes and address the effects of different exposures across time, geographical regions and socioeconomic status.
Measurements are reported of the target neutralization current, the target charge, and the tangential component of the magnetic field generated as a result of laser–target interaction by pulses with the energy in the range of 45–92 mJ on target and the pulse duration from 39 to 1000 fs. The experiment was performed at the Eclipse facility in CELIA, Bordeaux. The aim of the experiment was to extend investigations performed for the thick (mm scale) targets to the case of thin (μm thickness) targets in a way that would allow for a straightforward comparison of the results. We found that thin foil targets tend to generate 20–50% higher neutralization current and the target charge than the thick targets. The measurement of the tangential component of the magnetic field had shown that the initial spike is dominated by the 1 ns pulse consistent with the 1 ns pulse of the neutralization current, but there are some differences between targets of different types on sub-ns scale, which is an effect going beyond a simple picture of the target acting as an antenna. The sub-ns structure appears to be reproducible to surprising degree. We found that there is in general a linear correlation between the maximum value of the magnetic field and the maximum neutralization current, which supports the target-antenna picture, except for pulses 100s of fs long.
Ecoevolutionary processes affecting hosts, vectors and pathogens are important drivers of zoonotic disease emergence. In this study, we focused on nephropathia epidemica (NE), which is caused by Puumala hantavirus (PUUV) whose natural reservoir is the bank vole, Myodes glareolus. We questioned the possibility of NE emergence in a French region that is considered to be NE-free but that is adjacent to a NE-endemic region. We first confirmed the epidemiology of these two regions and we demonstrated the absence of spatial barriers that could have limited dispersal, and consequently, the spread of PUUV into the NE-free region. We next tested whether regional immunoheterogeneity could impact PUUV chances to circulate and persist in the NE-free region. We showed that bank voles from the NE-free region were sensitive to experimental PUUV infection. We observed high levels of immunoheterogeneity between individuals and also between regions. Antiviral gene expression (Tnf and Mx2) reached higher levels in bank voles from the NE-free region. During experimental infections, anti-PUUV antibody production was higher in bank voles from the NE-endemic region. These results indicated a lower susceptibility to PUUV for bank voles from this NE-free region, which might limit PUUV persistence and therefore, the risk of NE.
Previous research has shown relatively diminished medial prefrontal cortex activation and heightened psychophysiological responses during the recollection of personal events in post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), but the origin of these abnormalities is unknown. Twin studies provide the opportunity to determine whether such abnormalities reflect familial vulnerabilities, result from trauma exposure, or are acquired characteristics of PTSD.
In this case–control twin study, 26 male identical twin pairs (12 PTSD; 14 non-PTSD) discordant for PTSD and combat exposure recalled and imagined trauma-unrelated stressful and neutral life events using a standard script-driven imagery paradigm during functional magnetic resonance imaging and concurrent skin conductance measurement.
Diminished activation in the medial prefrontal cortex during Stressful v. Neutral script-driven imagery was observed in the individuals with PTSD, relative to other groups.
Diminished medial prefrontal cortex activation during Stressful v. Neutral script-driven imagery may be an acquired characteristic of PTSD. If replicated, this finding could be used prospectively to inform diagnosis and the assessment of treatment response.
A trend toward greater body size in dizygotic (DZ) than in monozygotic (MZ) twins has been suggested by some but not all studies, and this difference may also vary by age. We analyzed zygosity differences in mean values and variances of height and body mass index (BMI) among male and female twins from infancy to old age. Data were derived from an international database of 54 twin cohorts participating in the COllaborative project of Development of Anthropometrical measures in Twins (CODATwins), and included 842,951 height and BMI measurements from twins aged 1 to 102 years. The results showed that DZ twins were consistently taller than MZ twins, with differences of up to 2.0 cm in childhood and adolescence and up to 0.9 cm in adulthood. Similarly, a greater mean BMI of up to 0.3 kg/m2 in childhood and adolescence and up to 0.2 kg/m2 in adulthood was observed in DZ twins, although the pattern was less consistent. DZ twins presented up to 1.7% greater height and 1.9% greater BMI than MZ twins; these percentage differences were largest in middle and late childhood and decreased with age in both sexes. The variance of height was similar in MZ and DZ twins at most ages. In contrast, the variance of BMI was significantly higher in DZ than in MZ twins, particularly in childhood. In conclusion, DZ twins were generally taller and had greater BMI than MZ twins, but the differences decreased with age in both sexes.
For over 100 years, the genetics of human anthropometric traits has attracted scientific interest. In particular, height and body mass index (BMI, calculated as kg/m2) have been under intensive genetic research. However, it is still largely unknown whether and how heritability estimates vary between human populations. Opportunities to address this question have increased recently because of the establishment of many new twin cohorts and the increasing accumulation of data in established twin cohorts. We started a new research project to analyze systematically (1) the variation of heritability estimates of height, BMI and their trajectories over the life course between birth cohorts, ethnicities and countries, and (2) to study the effects of birth-related factors, education and smoking on these anthropometric traits and whether these effects vary between twin cohorts. We identified 67 twin projects, including both monozygotic (MZ) and dizygotic (DZ) twins, using various sources. We asked for individual level data on height and weight including repeated measurements, birth related traits, background variables, education and smoking. By the end of 2014, 48 projects participated. Together, we have 893,458 height and weight measures (52% females) from 434,723 twin individuals, including 201,192 complete twin pairs (40% monozygotic, 40% same-sex dizygotic and 20% opposite-sex dizygotic) representing 22 countries. This project demonstrates that large-scale international twin studies are feasible and can promote the use of existing data for novel research purposes.
Fasting heat production (FHP) is used for characterizing the basal metabolic rate of animals and the corresponding maintenance energy requirements and in the calculation of net energy value of feeds. In broilers, the most recent FHP estimates were obtained in the 1980s in slow-growing and fatter birds than nowadays. The FHP values (n=73; six experiments) measured in 3 to 6-week-old modern lines of broilers weighing 0.6 to 2.8 kg and growing at 80 to 100 g/day were used to update these literature values. Each measurement was obtained in a group of fasting broilers (5 to 14 birds) kept in a respiration chamber for at least 24 h. The FHP estimate corresponds to the asymptotic heat production corrected for zero physical activity obtained by modeling the decrease in heat production during the fasting day. The compilation of these data indicates that FHP was linearly related to the BW0.70 (in kg), which can be considered as the metabolic BW of modern broilers. The 0.70 exponent differs from the conventional value of 0.75 used for mature animals. The FHP per kg of BW0.70 ranged between 410 and 460 kJ/day according to the experiment (P<0.01). An experiment conducted with a shorter duration of fasting (16 h) indicated that FHP values are higher than those obtained over at least 24 h of fasting. Our values are similar to those obtained previously on fatter and slow-growing birds, even though the comparison is difficult since measurement conditions and methodologies have changed during the last 30 years. The FHP values obtained in our trials represent a basis for energy nutrition of modern broilers.
The aim of this work was to study the effects of incorporating sugar beet pulp (SBP) into the diet on the development of the crop and performance of geese. A total of 480 1-day-old ganders were divided into three groups differing in the composition and mode of distribution of the diet offered from day 56 to 89. The following two diets were used: a standard diet (nitrogen-corrected apparent metabolizable energy, AMEn 11.44 MJ/kg; 160 g/kg CP) or a diet containing 10% of SBP (SBP diet; AMEn 11.47 MJ/kg; 160 g/kg CP). The swelling capacity (SC) hydration was higher for SBP than for the standard diet (3.62 v. 2.72 ml of H2O/g of dry matter at 60 min; P<0.05). In the Control group, birds were fed with a controlled time of access to a standard diet. Other birds were fed the SBP diet with a controlled time of access (SBPt group) or a controlled quantity offered (SBPq). From day 90 to 104, 88 birds/group were overfed with a mixture containing mainly corn. Body traits including volume of the crop were measured at day 89. Fatty liver weight and commercial grading were measured at d 104. Feed intake from day 56 to 89 was higher in the Control group than in the SBPt group (8097 v. 7545 g; P<0.05), feed intake in the SBPq group being intermediate (7801 g); however, live weights (LW) of the birds were similar in the three groups measured at day 89 (5746 g; P>0.05). At day 89, the volume of the crop tended to be higher in the SBPt compared with the Control group (52.8 v. 48.8 ml/kg of LW; P=0.101). After overfeeding, feed intake (12 922 g), weight gain (2412 g), LW (8170 g), fatty liver weight (875 g) and commercial grading of the fatty liver were similar (P>0.1) for all the three groups. Therefore, SBP could help adapt the digestive tract of waterfowl to high feed intake through an increase in the crop volume, but its method of use – that is, level of incorporation and mode of distribution – should continue to be investigated.
Improving health through better nutrition of the population may contribute to enhanced efficiency and sustainability of healthcare systems. A recent expert meeting investigated in detail a number of methodological aspects related to the discipline of nutrition economics. The role of nutrition in health maintenance and in the prevention of non-communicable diseases is now generally recognised. However, the main scope of those seeking to contain healthcare expenditures tends to focus on the management of existing chronic diseases. Identifying additional relevant dimensions to measure and the context of use will become increasingly important in selecting and developing outcome measurements for nutrition interventions. The translation of nutrition-related research data into public health guidance raises the challenging issue of carrying out more pragmatic trials in many areas where these would generate the most useful evidence for health policy decision-making. Nutrition exemplifies all the types of interventions and policy which need evaluating across the health field. There is a need to start actively engaging key stakeholders in order to collect data and to widen health technology assessment approaches for achieving a policy shift from evidence-based medicine to evidence-based decision-making in the field of nutrition.
The aim of this trial was to study the influence of feed form on the performance, gizzard development and carcass traits of growing geese. Between 42 and 98 days of age, 360 geese (type Maxipalm®) were fed a diet containing 500 g sorghum/kg (nitrogen-corrected apparent metabolizable energy 12.6 MJ/kg, 15.1 g/kg CP). Birds were divided into three groups differing in feed form: complete pellets (Control group, n = 120); a coarse-ground meal (CG group, n = 120); or a mixture containing protein-rich pellets and sorghum whole grains (M group, n = 120). Feed intake per pen (40 birds/pen) was measured weekly between 42 and 98 days of age, and individual live weight (LW) was measured every 2 weeks. At 84 and 98 days of age, 12 birds were slaughtered in each group to measure the gizzard development and body traits. Irrespective of the goose sex, LW at 98 days was lower for the CG group than for the Control group (5555 v. 5888 g, P < 0.05 for males and 5039 v. 5215 g, P < 0.05 for females). The feed intake over the entire period was 5.5% higher in the M group (P < 0.05) than in the Control and CG groups but the feed conversion ratio (6.91, P > 0.05) was similar in the three groups. The gizzard development (as % of LW) was higher in birds of the CG group than those of the Control and M groups at 84 days of age (+13.98% and +13.51%, respectively; P < 0.05) but was similar in all three groups at 98 days of age (4.01%, P > 0.05). The relative liver development was lower in the birds of the CG group than those of the other two groups at 84 and 98 days of age (−20%, P < 0.001 and −10%, P < 0.05, respectively). The other body traits were similar in the three groups at both 84 and 98 days of age. The present results suggest that a simplified diet presented in the form of a mixture of sorghum whole grains and protein-rich pellets did not reduce the performance of growing geese.
This study details low pressure and low temperature cleaning of Si(100) surfaces. The properties of Si surfaces exposed to variations in plasma generated H are described. The diagnostic techniques used to study the processing conditions are residual gas analysis (RGA) and emission spectroscopy. The surface is characterized by low energy electron diffraction (LEED) and angle resolved uv-photoemission spectroscopy (ARUPS). During the cleaning, Si complexes are formed which indicates the removal of species from the Si(100) surface. Plasma cleaning at 300°C results in a Si(100) surface with 2×1 surface diffraction patterns as detected by LEED. Measurements by ARUPS with He I radiation show the absence of Si surface states on the Hpassivated surface. The ARUPS measurements also indicate that the H begins to desorb from the Si(100) H-passivated surface at ∼500°C.
We have grown dilute Si-C epitaxial layers on Si (100) substrates at 800°C with a RTCVD process using SiH4 and C3H8. C atoms can be kinetically stabilized in interstitial sites in the Si lattice at relatively high temperatures if process parameters, such as growth rate and C/Si flux ratio, are optimized.
Dry sliding friction and wear experiments were performed with pin-on-disc techniques using WC and brass pins in contact with quasicrystalline (Al65Cu23Fe12) and crystalline (Al50Cu35Fe15 and Al70Cu20Fe10) discs, which were prepared by powder metallurgy routes. The contact loads (1, 5 and 10 N) used in this study produced similar coefficients of friction 0.3-0.4 for the Al65Cu23Fe12 and Al50Cu35Fe15 phases. These values are higher than previously reported for quasicrystalline and related crystalline phases. Possible reasons for these differences are presented. The contrasting wear behavior between different pins and discs is discussed in terms of contact area, oxidation, material transfer mechanisms and fracture characteristics.
Deformation experiments were performed on single crystals of the ξ-AIPdMn approximant in bending geometry at high temperature. Two different mechanisms of plastic deformation are shown to exist in this phase: one based on dislocations and another novel mechanism based on the motion of phason lines. Burgers vector and line directions of dislocations were determined. Phason lines are shown to build a periodic lattice. The interaction of a dislocation with the phason line lattice results in dislocations on another length scale. This meta-dislocation in the periodic phason line lattice has a Burgers vector of magnitude 165 Å. The relative importance of phason lines and dislocations for the plastic deformation is discussed as a function of the orientation of the sample with respect to the bending geometry.
We have grown a decagonal single quasicrystal with a size of centimeter order in an A172Co16Ni12 alloy by floating zone method at a growth rate of 0.5 mm/h. The single decagonal quasicrystal has been inspected by Laue X-ray as well as neutron diffraction, revealing a very high quasicrystalline quality. By quenching the liquid during growth, a flat solid-liquid interface has been directly observed. There exists solute redistribution at the growing solid-liquid interface. At steady state growth Al is enriched and Co, Ni are depleted in front of solid-liquid interface. Solute partition ratios of Al, Co and Ni were determined to be about 0.91, 1.57 and 1.08, respectively.
Modulated photocurrent method originally developed for analyzing the electronic states of semiconductor has been applied to an Al-Pd-Re quasicrystal having high electrical resistivity. The measured DC component of the photocurrent has indicated that the mobility of the photocarrier is approximately the same as that of the dark carrier at the Fermi level. The data of the amplitude and phase shift of the AC component can be explained well by a simple model in which only the two processes, carrier generation and recombination, are involved. The recombination time obtained by fitting is by about six orders larger than those reported for semiconductors. The long recombination time as well as the energy independent mobility of carriers are discussed in view of a spiky structure in electron density of states expected for the quasicrystals.
Two types of atom clusters found in the β-(A1PdMnSi) cubic phase, referred to as a 2/1 crystalline approximant, with a composition of approximately Al70Pd23Mn6Si1 which is near to the composition Al72Pd20Mn8 of the icosahedral phase, are discussed in detail for understanding the structure of the Al-Pd-Mn icosahedral phase. A large dodecahedral atom cluster located at the body-centered position can be divided into 19 atom shells with approximately icosahedral symmetry, and a dodecahedron of the 12th shell internally touches the surface of the cubic unit cell with a lattice constant of 2.0211 nm. At each vertex of the dodecahedron, a small icosahedral atom cluster consisting of 12 Al atoms surrounding a central Pd atom is located. The dodecahedron is connected to each other by edge-sharing, namely by sharing two small icosahedral atom clusters, along the twofold rotational direction, and forms a simple-cubic packing of the atom cluster in the β-(AlPdMnSi) cubic phase. Another atom cluster located at the origin fills up gaps of the simple-cubic packing of the large dodecahedral atom cluster. By using the dodecahedral and bridging atom clusters, the structure of the Al-Pd-Mn icosahedral quasicrystal is discussed.
The nucleation behavior of the 1/1 quasicrystal approximant phase was investigated in Ti-TMSi- O (TM=Mn, Cr, Fe) alloys made near the stoichiometric composition. Containerless solidification studies were performed using electromagnetic (rf) levitation and drop-tube techniques. The solidification microstructures indicate that α-Ti nucleated first in Ti-Cr-Si-O and β-Ti in Ti-Mn-Si-O alloys; the 1/1 phase nucleated and grew on these titanium oxide dendrites. In Ti-Fe-Si-O alloys, the 1/1 phase nucleated and grew directly from the liquid, allowing information on the nucleation rates to be obtained from undercooling data.
The phase equilibria of the Al-Cu-Fe quasicrystalline phase (y phase) is complex and conventional crystal growth techniques like the Bridgman and Czochralski methods are not applicable in preparation of large crystals. Large single grains of the y phase been have prepared by either slow cooling or isothermal anneals. In the later technique, arc melted ingots were subjected to either single or multiple heat treatments between 825 and 840°C to encourage grain growth. Following heat treatment, grains of the icosahedral phase are found either as isolated pentagonal-faceted crystals within the ingot or within clusters of intergrown grains. The growth of the large grains is independent of the sample processing history of the sample, is facilitated by the presence of liquid at the growth temperatures and is constrained by the physical dimension of the ingot. The microstructure of both grain types is similar containing a minor quantity (on the order of 5–10 %) of a second phase and a high degree of porosity in the as-grown state. The second phase is usually present as a thin layer between adjacent grains or associated with a pore within a single grain. The grain porosity is distributed throughout the ingot. These defects can be removed through post-growth hot isostatic pressing and anneal treatments.