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In this manuscript, a scheme for neural-learning-enhanced Cartesian Admittance control is presented for a robotic manipulator to deal with dynamic environments with moving remote center of motion (RCM) constraints. Although some research has been implemented to address fixed constrained motion, the dynamic moving movement constraint is still challenging. Indeed, the moving active RCM constraints generate uncertain disturbance on the robot tool shaft with unknown dynamics. The neural-learning-enhanced decoupled controller with disturbance optimisation is employed and implemented to maintain the performance under the kinematic uncertain and dynamic uncertain generated. In addition, the admittance Cartesian control method is introduced to control the robot, providing compliant behaviour to an external force in its operational space. In this proposed framework, a neural-learning-enhanced disturbance observer is investigated to calculate the external factor operating on the end effector premised on generalised momentum in order to ensure accuracy. Finally, the experiments are implemented using a redundant robot to validate the efficacy of the suggested approach with moving RCM constraints.
Cable-driven parallel robots (CDPRs) are still gaining attention thanks to their interesting characteristics compared to serial or classic parallel manipulators. However, the limited range of rotation of their end-effectors reduces their application fields to predominantly translational movements. In this context, the issue of extending the rotational workspace of a CDPR while maintaining a compact robot structure is addressed in this paper. This work is motivated by the need to find the optimal CDPR for upper limb rehabilitation allowing to assist the patient’s hand along a set of prescribed tasks. Firstly, a reconfigurable robot, where the motors’ locations are movable, is proposed in order to help reaching all the prescribed poses. Although this solution presents promising results compared to classical CDPRs, it involves a sizable robot structure inadequate to rehabilitation application. To improve the obtained solution, another approach is proposed, based on combining the large translational workspace of CDPRs and the large rotational workspace of serial manipulators. The optimal structure of a hybrid robot will be considered for the prototype design.
Branched-chain amino acids (BCAA) are considered markers of insulin resistance (IR) in subjects with obesity. In this study, we evaluated whether the presence of the SNP of the branched-chain aminotransferase 2 (BCAT2) gene can modify the effect of a dietary intervention (DI) on the plasma concentration of BCAA in subjects with obesity and IR. A prospective cohort study of adult subjects with obesity, BMI ≥ 30 kg/m2, homeostatic model assessment-insulin resistance (HOMA-IR ≥ 2·5) no diagnosed chronic disease, underwent a DI with an energy restriction of 3140 kJ/d and nutritional education for 1 month. Anthropometric measurements, body composition, blood pressure, resting energy expenditure, oral glucose tolerance test results, serum biochemical parameters and the plasma amino acid profile were evaluated before and after the DI. SNP were assessed by the TaqMan SNP genotyping assay. A total of eighty-two subjects were included, and fifteen subjects with a BCAT2 SNP had a greater reduction in leucine, isoleucine, valine and the sum of BCAA. Those subjects also had a greater reduction in skeletal muscle mass, fat-free mass, total body water, blood pressure, muscle strength and biochemical parameters after 1 month of the DI and adjusting for age and sex. This study demonstrated that the presence of the BCAT2 SNP promotes a greater reduction in plasma BCAA concentration after adjusting for age and sex, in subjects with obesity and IR after a 1-month energy-restricted DI.
Cognition heavily relies on social determinants and genetic background. Latin America comprises approximately 8% of the global population and faces unique challenges, many derived from specific demographic and socioeconomic variables, such as violence and inequality. While such factors have been described to influence mental health outcomes, no large-scale studies with Latin American population have been carried out. Therefore, we aim to describe the cognitive performance of a representative sample of Latin American individuals with schizophrenia and its relationship to clinical factors. Additionally, we aim to investigate how socioeconomic status (SES) relates to cognitive performance in patients and controls.
We included 1175 participants from five Latin American countries (Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, and Mexico): 864 individuals with schizophrenia and 311 unaffected subjects. All participants were part of projects that included cognitive evaluation with MATRICS Consensus Cognitive Battery and clinical assessments.
Patients showed worse cognitive performance than controls across all domains. Age and diagnosis were independent predictors, indicating similar trajectories of cognitive aging for both patients and controls. The SES factors of education, parental education, and income were more related to cognition in patients than in controls. Cognition was also influenced by symptomatology.
Patients did not show evidence of accelerated cognitive aging; however, they were most impacted by a lower SES suggestive of deprived environment than controls. These findings highlight the vulnerability of cognitive capacity in individuals with psychosis in face of demographic and socioeconomic factors in low- and middle-income countries.
Digitization and the release of public records on the Internet have expanded the reach and uses of criminal record data in the United States. This study analyzes the types and volume of personally identifiable data released on the Internet via two hundred public governmental websites for law enforcement, criminal courts, corrections, and criminal record repositories in each state. We find that public disclosures often include information valuable to the personal data economy, including the full name, birthdate, home address, and physical characteristics of arrestees, detainees, and defendants. Using administrative data, we also estimate the volume of data disclosed online. Our findings highlight the mass dissemination of pre-conviction data: every year, over ten million arrests, 4.5 million mug shots, and 14.7 million criminal court proceedings are digitally released at no cost. Post-conviction, approximately 6.5 million current and former prisoners and 12.5 million people with a felony conviction have a record on the Internet. While justified through public records laws, such broad disclosures reveal an imbalance between the “transparency” of data releases that facilitate monitoring of state action and those that facilitate monitoring individual people. The results show how the criminal legal system increasingly distributes Internet privacy violations and community surveillance as part of contemporary punishment.
Social and environmental factors such as poverty or violence modulate the risk and course of schizophrenia. However, how they affect the brain in patients with psychosis remains unclear.
We studied how environmental factors are related to brain structure in patients with schizophrenia and controls in Latin America, where these factors are large and unequally distributed.
This is a multicentre study of magnetic resonance imaging in patients with schizophrenia and controls from six Latin American cities. Total and voxel-level grey matter volumes, and their relationship with neighbourhood characteristics such as average income and homicide rates, were analysed with a general linear model.
A total of 334 patients with schizophrenia and 262 controls were included. Income was differentially related to total grey matter volume in both groups (P = 0.006). Controls showed a positive correlation between total grey matter volume and income (R = 0.14, P = 0.02). Surprisingly, this relationship was not present in patients with schizophrenia (R = −0.076, P = 0.17). Voxel-level analysis confirmed that this interaction was widespread across the cortex. After adjusting for global brain changes, income was positively related to prefrontal cortex volumes only in controls. Conversely, the hippocampus in patients with schizophrenia, but not in controls, was relatively larger in affluent environments. There was no significant correlation between environmental violence and brain structure.
Our results highlight the interplay between environment, particularly poverty, and individual characteristics in psychosis. This is particularly important for harsh environments such as low- and middle-income countries, where potentially less brain vulnerability (less grey matter loss) is sufficient to become unwell in adverse (poor) environments.
There is no information about the characteristics of early cleavage in the Patagonian blennie (Eleginops maclovinus), which can be used as a diagnostic tool for embryo quality. The purpose of this investigation, therefore, was to characterize the first blastomeres of E. maclovinus morphologically. Of a ‘pool’ of incubated eggs at 10.7 ± 0.5°C, 100 microphotographs of blastodiscs were extracted at different incubation periods from 0.25 to 5 h after fertilization and analyzed. Blastodiscs taken at 3.5, 4.0 and 5.0 h were characterized and classified into symmetric or asymmetric groups according to their morphology. The proportions of length (L) and width (W) of each blastomere were determined to establish its symmetry. Additionally, 20 microphotographs of blastodiscs of normal appearance were analyzed morphologically (control blastodisc: CB) and compared other blastodiscs (4.0 and 5.0 h). The results showed that before fertilization oocytes presented a somehow turgid aspect (maximum average diameter of 987 ± 41 µm) and after fertilization and hydration, their diameter increased to 1001.5 ± 11 µm (but not statistically significant) and presented a spherical shape. First cleavage ends after 3.5 h of development, forming two blastomeres 467 ± 45 μm length (L) and 328 ± 21 μm width (W) with a L/W ratio of 1.43 ± 0.19. The second cleavage ends after development at 4.5 h forming four blastomeres 238 ± 65 μm length and 227 ± 65 μm width with a ratio L/W of 1.06 ± 0.09. Five categories were identified during the blastomere characterization: 70% normal or symmetric; 8% with odd numbers of blastomeres; 6% unequal; 6% ‘pie shaped’ and 10% amorphous.
A 10-month-old girl with type I Loeys–Dietz syndrome developed a conspicuous aortic root aneurysm that was well demonstrated on chest X-ray/CT reconstruction. She underwent successful valve-spare repair of the ascending aorta.
Background: Percutaneous closure of patent ductus arteriosus has become the treatment of choice in many centres. In patients with large ducts and pulmonary hypertension, transcatheter closure has been achieved with success using the Amplatzer Duct Occluder or even the Amplatzer Muscular Ventricular Septal Defect Occluder. Materials and methods: We present a series of 17 patients with large and hypertensive ductus arteriosus who were treated with an Amplatzer Septal Occluder. The group had 11 female patients (64.7%) and a mean age of 18.6±12.1 years. Results: The haemodynamic and anatomical data are as follows: pulmonary artery systolic pressure 71.3±31.8 mmHg, pulmonary to systemic flow ratio 3.14±1.36, ductal diameter at the pulmonary end 12.5±3.8 mm, and at the aortic end 20.2±7.7 mm; 14 cases (82.3%) had type A ducts. In 11 patients, we began the procedure using a different device – six with duct occluder and five with ventricular septal occluder – and it was changed because of device embolisation in six (35.3%). All septal occluders were delivered successfully. Residual shunt was moderate in six patients (35.3%), mild in eight (47%), trivial in two (11.8%), and no shunt in one (5.9%). Pulmonary systolic pressure decreased to 48.9±10.8 mmHg after occlusion (p=0.0015). Follow-up in 15 patients (88.2%) for 28.4±14.4 months showed complete closure in all cases but one, and continuous decrease of the pulmonary systolic pressure to 31.4±10.5 mmHg. No complications at follow-up have been reported. Conclusions: The Amplatzer Septal Occluder is a good alternative to percutaneously treat large and hypertensive ductus arteriosus.
The diagnosis and treatment for paediatric and congenital cardiac disease has undergone remarkable progress over the last 60 years. Unfortunately, this progress has been largely limited to the developed world. Yet every year approximately 90% of the more than 1,000,000 children who are born with congenital cardiac disease across the world receive either suboptimal care or are totally denied care.
While in the developed world the focus has changed from an effort to decrease post-operative mortality to now improving quality of life and decreasing morbidity, which is the focus of this Supplement, the rest of the world still needs to develop basic access to congenital cardiac care. The World Society for Pediatric and Congenital Heart Surgery [http://www.wspchs.org/] was established in 2006. The Vision of the World Society is that every child born anywhere in the world with a congenital heart defect should have access to appropriate medical and surgical care. The Mission of the World Society is to promote the highest quality comprehensive care to all patients with pediatric and/or congenital heart disease, from the fetus to the adult, regardless of the patient’s economic means, with emphasis on excellence in education, research and community service.
We present in this article an overview of the epidemiology of congenital cardiac disease, the current and future challenges to improve care in the developed and developing world, the impact of the globalization of cardiac surgery, and the role that the World Society should play. The World Society for Pediatric and Congenital Heart Surgery is in a unique position to influence and truly improve the global care of children and adults with congenital cardiac disease throughout the world [http://www.wspchs.org/].
The complexity of the adult brain is the result of an integrated series of developmental events that depends on appropriate timing of differentiation. The importance of transcriptional regulatory networks and epigenetic mechanisms of regulation of gene expression is becoming increasingly evident. Among these mechanisms, previous work has revealed the importance of histone deacetylation in oligodendrocyte differentiation. In this manuscript we define the region of interaction between transcription factor Yin-Yang 1 (YY1) and histone deacetylase 1, and characterize the functional consequences of YY1 overexpression on the differentiation of oligodendrocyte progenitors.
Materials with high specific surface areas such as pillared clays and zeolites have been studied and can be used to remediate contaminated water. Chemical functionality or compounds can be anchored or attached to the surface of a low-cost material used as a support matrix. This work studied the suitability of inexpensive natural mineral soils to decontaminate waste water from mine and metallurgic industries. Native mineral soils were also impregnated with commercial 1,3 diphenyltiourea (DFT) to improve retention of heavy metal ions. The natural mineral soils were from Hidalgo State in Mexico: white marble (calcite: CaCO3), volcanic gravels named “red and black tezontles” (anorthite matrix: CaO.Al2O3.(SiO2)2 with FexOy and PbxOy), green zeolites (mordenite: Na2CaK2. OAl2O3.10SiO2.7H2O) and kaolin (kaolinite: Al2O3(SiO2)2.H2O). They were ground and sieved. The 50 mesh fraction was studied by Raman and FTIR spectroscopy, X ray powder diffraction and scanning electronic microscopy coupled with energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (SEM/EDX). From these solids new hybrid materials were prepared by impregnation with DFT in ethanolic solutions. Products were characterized and compared with untreated materials. Tezontles, zeolites and kaolinite showed the best impregnation levels. In their surfaces, grown DFT crystals showed different structures. The obtained hybrid solids were tested using several metallic ion solutions: Mn(II), Ni(II), Co(II), Cd(II), Hg(II), Pb(II), Cu(II) and Zn(II). The metallic adducts were analyzed and the adsorption capacity is discussed. The materials showed high remotion percentages for all metal ions and low Hg(II), Pb(II) and Cd(II) final concentrations. They have good potential for use in remediation of contaminated water with highly toxic metal ions. The metallic adducts were characterized by FTIR and Raman spectroscopy, as well as SEM/EDX analysis. However, all of mentioned methods were not useful for detection of impregnated DFT nor adsorbed or coordinated metallic ions on the supporting materials. Only the SEM/EDX method was found to be suitable for analysis.
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