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The Square Kilometre Array (SKA) is a planned large radio interferometer designed to operate over a wide range of frequencies, and with an order of magnitude greater sensitivity and survey speed than any current radio telescope. The SKA will address many important topics in astronomy, ranging from planet formation to distant galaxies. However, in this work, we consider the perspective of the SKA as a facility for studying physics. We review four areas in which the SKA is expected to make major contributions to our understanding of fundamental physics: cosmic dawn and reionisation; gravity and gravitational radiation; cosmology and dark energy; and dark matter and astroparticle physics. These discussions demonstrate that the SKA will be a spectacular physics machine, which will provide many new breakthroughs and novel insights on matter, energy, and spacetime.
Nutritional therapy is a cornerstone of burns management. The optimal macronutrient intake for wound healing after burn injury has not been identified, although high-energy, high-protein diets are favoured. This study aimed to identify the optimal macronutrient intake for burn wound healing. The Geometric Framework (GF) was used to analyse wound healing after a 10% TBSA contact burn in mice ad libitum fed one of 11 high-energy diets, varying in macronutrient composition with protein (P5%-60%), carbohydrate (C20%-75%) and fat (F20%-75%). In the GF study, the optimal ratio for wound healing was identified as a moderate-protein, high-carbohydrate diet with a protein:carbohydrate:fat (P:C:F) ratio of 1:4:2. High-carbohydrate intake was associated with lower mortality, improved body weight and a beneficial pattern of body fat reserves. Protein intake was essential to prevent weight loss and mortality, but a protein intake target of ~7 kJ/day (~15% of energy intake) was identified, above which no further benefit was gained. High-protein intake was associated with delayed wound healing and increased liver and spleen weight. As the GF study demonstrated that an initial very high-protein intake prevented mortality, a very high-protein, moderate-carbohydrate diet (P40:C42:F18) was specifically designed. The dynamic diet study was also designed to combine and validate the benefits of an initial very high-protein intake for mortality, and subsequent moderate-protein, high-carbohydrate intake for optimal wound healing. The dynamic feeding experiment showed switching from an initial very high-protein diet to the optimal moderate-protein, high-carbohydrate diet accelerated wound healing whilst preventing mortality and liver enlargement.
This study aimed to determine the knowledge of first year health sciences students at a South African university regarding hearing loss and symptoms attributable to personal listening devices and their practices concerning the use of personal listening devices.
This was a cross-sectional study carried out using an anonymous self-administered questionnaire.
Of 336 students, 269 (80.1 per cent) completed the questionnaire. While most participants could identify symptoms that could be caused by extensive use of personal listening devices, almost 30 per cent did not know that it could cause permanent hearing loss. Personal listening devices were used by 90.7 per cent of participants, with 77.8 per cent having used them for more than five years. Use was at a high volume in 14.9 per cent of participants and for more than 2 hours per day in 52.7 per cent.
The findings indicate the need for an educational programme to inform students as to safe listening practices when using personal listening devices.
This study aims to create controlled fine space by electrospinning, and to develop the electrode materials for high-performance energy devices. With the popularization of mobile devices, household appliances, hybrid vehicles, electric vehicles, and the like, the use of power storage devices is expanding, and further performance improvements are required. In this study, a novel electrode material was developed by compositing Si with carbon nanofibers derived from polyacrylonitrile (PAN) by electrospinning and heat treatment. The texture and structure of the nanofibers were observed and analyzed by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy dispersive X-ray spectrometry (EDX) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) combined with image processing. Nano spaces were created in the CNFs and Si particles were able to be contained in the CNFs. In the second and subsequent cycles of the charge/discharge experiments of lithium ion battery (LIB) electrode made from the materials, the capacity was more than twice the theoretical capacity using graphite, and good cycle performance was obtained.
This paper reported the designed approaches of cycloidal mechanisms, studied its dynamic forces and failure characteristics using finite element methods (FEM). A simplified cycloidal mechanism (CM) is constructed to fulfill dynamic analysis and reliability evaluation. The studied results show that the loads of the mechanism are shared mainly by a half of the outer rollers and the inner pins. The possible failures of the mechanism will occur at the inner pins caused by the bending stress, and at the cycloid disc induced by the contacting stress. The failure of the inner pins will dominate the damage of the mechanism. A method of evaluating stress variation is proposed for fulfilling reliability design. The stress variations are derived according to the data in dynamic analysis by regression analysis. The methods of design modification are reported for improve the reliabilities. The allowable loads of the CM can be decided accordingly based on the analyzed information.
The fatty acid composition of chicken’s meat is largely influenced by dietary lipids, which are often used as supplements to increase dietary caloric density. The underlying key metabolites and pathways influenced by dietary oils remain poorly known in chickens. The objective of this study was to explore the underlying metabolic mechanisms of how diets supplemented with mixed or a single oil with distinct fatty acid composition influence the fatty acid profile in breast muscle of Qingyuan chickens. Birds were fed a corn-soybean meal diet supplemented with either soybean oil (control, CON) or equal amounts of mixed edible oils (MEO; soybean oil : lard : fish oil : coconut oil = 1 : 1 : 0.5 : 0.5) from 1 to 120 days of age. Growth performance and fatty acid composition of muscle lipids were analysed. LC-MS was applied to investigate the effects of CON v. MEO diets on lipid-related metabolites in the muscle of chickens at day 120. Compared with the CON diet, chickens fed the MEO diet had a lower feed conversion ratio (P < 0.05), higher proportions of lauric acid (C12:0), myristic acid (C14:0), palmitoleic acid (C16:1n-7), oleic acid (C18:1n-9), EPA (C20:5n-3) and DHA (C22:6n-3), and a lower linoleic acid (C18:2n-6) content in breast muscle (P < 0.05). Muscle metabolome profiling showed that the most differentially abundant metabolites are phospholipids, including phosphatidylcholines (PC) and phosphatidylethanolamines (PE), which enriched the glycerophospholipid metabolism (P < 0.05). These key differentially abundant metabolites – PC (14:0/20:4), PC (18:1/14:1), PC (18:0/14:1), PC (18:0/18:4), PC (20:0/18:4), PE (22:0/P-16:0), PE (24:0/20:5), PE (22:2/P-18:1), PE (24:0/18:4) – were closely associated with the contents of C12:0, C14:0, DHA and C18:2n-6 in muscle lipids (P < 0.05). The content of glutathione metabolite was higher with MEO than CON diet (P < 0.05). Based on these results, it can be concluded that the diet supplemented with MEO reduced the feed conversion ratio, enriched the content of n-3 fatty acids and modified the related metabolites (including PC, PE and glutathione) in breast muscle of chickens.
Each species is subject to various biotic and abiotic factors during growth. This paper formulates a deterministic model with the consideration of various factors regulating population growth such as age-dependent birth and death rates, spatial movements, seasonal variations, intra-specific competition and time-varying maturation simultaneously. The model takes the form of two coupled reaction–diffusion equations with time-dependent delays, which bring novel challenges to the theoretical analysis. Then, the model is analysed when competition among immatures is neglected, in which situation one equation for the adult population density is decoupled. The basic reproduction number
is defined and shown to determine the global attractivity of either the zero equilibrium (when
) or a positive periodic solution (
) by using the dynamical system approach on an appropriate phase space. When the immature intra-specific competition is included and the immature diffusion rate is neglected, the model is neither cooperative nor reducible to a single equation. In this case, the threshold dynamics about the population extinction and uniform persistence are established by using the newly defined basic reproduction number
as a threshold index. Furthermore, numerical simulations are implemented on the population growth of two different species for two different cases to validate the analytic results.
Formulated, processed, and dried Aloe polysaccharides thin film sandwiched between ITO as bottom electrode and Au as top electrode has been adopted as an artificial synapse to emulate behavior of neuromorphic computing. The synaptic plasticity or weight has been modulated with this simple metal-insulator-metal structure by applying voltage sweep and voltage pulse, with excitatory postsynaptic current being monitored. Synaptic potentiation and depression has been demonstrated by applying 6 consecutive sweeps of voltage in positive and negative polarity, respectively. By varying number (10 – 50) of voltage pulses, variable synaptic weight has been measured with paired pulse facilitation and post-tetanic potentiation indexes of 2.61x10-6and 1.45x10-4, respectively. The short-term plasticity and long-term potentiation can be clearly revealed when applying 40 pulses and beyond, with extracted time constants of approximately 28 s at 40 pulses and 90 s at 50 pulses.
Patients with severe mental disorders in low-resource settings have limited access to services, resulting in overwhelming caregiving burden for families. In extreme cases, this has led to the long-term restraining of patients in their homes. China underwent a nationwide initiative to unlock patients and provide continued treatment. This study aims to quantify household economic burden in families after unlocking and treatment, and to identify factors associated with increased burden due to schizophrenia.
A total of 264 subjects were enrolled from three geographically diverse provinces in 2012. Subjects were patients with schizophrenia who were previously put under restraints and had participated in the ‘unlocking and treatment’ intervention. The primary outcome was the current household economic burden, obtained from past year financial information collected through on-site interview. Patient disease characteristics, treatment, outcomes and family caregiving burden were collected as well. Univariate and multivariate linear regression were used to construct risk factor models for indirect economic burden.
After participating in the intervention, 85% of patients continued to receive mental health services, 70% used medication as prescribed and 80% were never relocked. Family members reported significantly decreased caregiving burden after receiving the intervention. Mean direct and indirect household economic burdens were CNY963 (US$31.7) and CNY11 724 (US$1670) per year, respectively, while family total income was on average CNY12 108 (US$1913) per year. Greater disease severity and poorer patient psychosocial function at time of study were found to be independent factors related to increased indirect burden.
The ‘unlocking and treatment’ intervention has improved the lives of patients and families. Indirect burden due to disease is still a major economic issue that needs to be addressed, potentially through improving treatment and patient functioning. Our findings contribute to the unravelling and eventual elimination of chronic restraining of mentally ill patients in low-resource settings.
This report updates the incidence of herbicide-resistant (HR) weeds across western Canada from the last report covering 2007 to 2011. This third round of pre-harvest surveys was conducted in Saskatchewan in 2014/2015, Manitoba in 2016, and Alberta in 2017, totaling 798 randomly selected cropped fields across 28 million ha. In addition, we screened 1,108 weed seed samples submitted by prairie growers or industry between 2012 and 2016. Of 578 fields where wild oat seed was collected, 398 (69%) had an HR biotype: 62% acetyl-CoA carboxylase inhibitor (WSSA Group 1)-HR, 34% acetolactate synthase inhibitor (Group 2)-HR, and 27% Group 1+2-HR (vs. 41, 12, and 8%, respectively, in the previous second-round surveys from 2007 to 2009). The sharp increase in Group 2 resistance is the result of reliance on this site of action to manage Group 1 resistance and the resultant increased selection pressure. There are no POST options to control Group 1+2-HR wild oat in wheat or barley. The rise of Group 2 resistance in green foxtail (11% of sampled fields) and yellow foxtail (17% of Manitoba fields), which was not detected in the previous survey round, parallels the results for wild oat resistance. Various Group 2-HR populations of broadleaf weeds were confirmed, with cleavers and field pennycress being most abundant. Results of submission sample testing reflected survey results. Although not included in this study, a post-harvest survey in Alberta in 2017 indicated widespread Group 2, 4 (dicamba), and 9 (glyphosate) resistance in kochia and Group 2 resistance in Russian thistle. These surveys bring greater awareness of HR weeds to growers and land managers at a local and regional level, and highlight the urgency to preserve herbicide susceptibility in our key economic weed species.
Thermosonic wire bonding is a common fabrication process for connecting devices in electronic packaging. However, when the free air ball (FAB) is compressed onto the I/O pad of the chip during bonding procedure, chip cracking may occur if the contact pressure is too large. This study proposes an effective simulation technique that can predict the wire ball geometry after bonding in an accurate range. The contact force obtained in the simulation can be used for possible die cracking behavior evaluation. The simulation in this study used the explicit time integration scheme to deal with the time marching problem, and the second-order precision arbitrary Lagrangian-Eulerian (ALE) algorithm was used to deal with the large deformation of the wire ball during the bonding process. In addition, the equilibrium smoothing algorithm in LS-DYNA can make the contact behavior and geometry of the bonding wire almost the same as the experiment, which can also significantly reduce the distortion of the mesh geometry after remeshing.
Early laryngeal cancer treated with definitive radiotherapy or surgery has a high cure rate. This study evaluated the patterns of treatment failure and long-term results of early laryngeal cancers treated with definitive radiotherapy.
From January 2002 to December 2014, a total of 242 patients with early-stage laryngeal cancers were treated with radical radiotherapy.
All patients had squamous cell carcinoma of the larynx (92 per cent male and 8 per cent female). Median follow-up was 4.5 years. The majority of patients were smokers (57.4 per cent). Local failure was seen in 12.5 per cent of stage I patients and 22.8 per cent of stage II patients. The 5-year overall survival and disease specific survival were 84 per cent and 91 per cent, respectively.
In summary, radiotherapy is a suitable treatment modality for patients with early-stage laryngeal cancer, with an overall locoregional control rate of 84 per cent. Patients who fail radiotherapy may still undergo salvage laryngectomy.
To analyse how the auditory brainstem response changes in patients with sudden sensorineural hearing loss.
Data were collected via retrospective medical chart review.
Forty-three patients were included in this study. The mean latency of auditory brainstem response wave 1 was significantly longer for the affected side than for the unaffected side (p = 0.003). The mean latency of auditory brainstem response wave 1 was significantly shorter, and the mean amplitude of auditory brainstem response wave 1 was significantly larger, in the good response group compared to the poor response group. In forward conditional logistic regression analysis, auditory brainstem response wave 1 latency was an independent predictor of a good response (odds ratio = 34.37, 95 per cent confidence interval = 1.56–757.15, p = 0.025).
In patients with sudden sensorineural hearing loss, the latency of wave 1 of the auditory brainstem response was significantly increased and was related to prognosis.
Exercise modifies energy intake (EI) in adolescents with obesity, but whether this is mediated by the exercise-induced energy deficit remains unknown. The present study examined the effect of exercise with and without dietary replacement of the exercise energy expenditure on appetite, EI and food reward in adolescents with obesity. Fourteen 12–15-year-old adolescents with obesity (eight girls; Tanner 3–4; BMI 34·8 (sd 5·7) kg/m2; BMI z score 2·3 (sd 0·4)) randomly completed three experimental conditions: (i) rest control (CON); (ii) 30-min cycling (EX) and (iii) 30-min cycling with dietary energy replacement (EX + R). Ad libitum EI was assessed at lunch and dinner, and food reward (Leeds Food Preference Questionnaire) before and after lunch. Appetite was assessed at regular intervals. Lunch, evening and total EI (excluding the post-exercise snack in EX − R) were similar across conditions. Lunch and total EI including the post-exercise snack in EX + R were higher in EX − R than CON and EX; EX and CON were similar. Total relative EI was lower in EX (6284 (sd 2042) kJ) compared with CON (7167 (sd 2218) kJ; P < 0·05) and higher in EX + R (7736 (sd 2033) kJ) compared with CON (P < 0·001). Appetite and satiety quotients did not differ across conditions (P ≥ 0·10). Pre-meal explicit liking for fat was lower in EX compared with CON and EX + R (P = 0·05). There was time by condition interaction between EX and CON for explicit wanting and liking for fat (P = 0·01). Despite similar appetite and EI, adolescents with obesity do not adapt their post-exercise food intake to account for immediate dietary replacement of the exercise-induced energy deficit, favouring a short-term positive energy balance.
Research for conservation covers a broad spectrum of topics at the interface of ecology, social sciences and economy. Conservation research is conducted in different experimental or observational settings from small to large spatial scales. Biological field stations and long-term research sites offer a unique opportunity to conduct conservation research when established data-collection infrastructure and extensive data records address specific conservation questions. These include the evaluation of conservation interventions or the development and validation of monitoring techniques, for which long-term observations, knowledge of species abundance, or behavioural or ecological data records are needed. This chapter will (i) outline aspects of a conservation research question qualifying it to be addressed at a long-term field site, (ii) list specific questions, studies and disciplines that successfully conducted at the Taï long-term field site and (iii) identify new questions for future conservation research at Taï or other long-term sites. We close the chapter with an outlook on how long-term study sites can attract conservation researchers, with mutual benefit for all parties.
Weaning is known to induce important nutritional and energetic stress in piglets. Low-birthweight (LBW) piglets, now frequently observed in swine production, are more likely to be affected. The weaning period is also associated with dysfunctional immune responses, uncontrolled inflammation and oxidative stress conditions that are recognized risk factors for infections and diseases. Mounting evidence indicates that mitochondria, the main cellular sources of energy in the form of adenosine 5′ triphosphate (ATP) and primary sites of reactive oxygen species production, are related to immunity, inflammation and bacterial pathogenesis. However, no information is currently available regarding the link between mitochondrial energy production and oxidative stress in weaned piglets. The objective of this study was to characterize markers of cellular and mitochondrial energy metabolism and oxidative status in both normal-birthweight (NBW) and LBW piglets throughout the peri-weaning period. To conduct the study, 30 multiparous sows were inseminated and litters were standardized to 12 piglets. All the piglets were weighted at day 1 and 120 piglets were selected and assigned to 1 of 2 experimental groups: NBW (n = 60, mean weight of 1.73 ± 0.01 kg) and LBW piglets weighing less than 1.2 kg (n = 60, 1.01 ± 0.01 kg). Then, 10 piglets from each group were selected at 14, 21 (weaning), 23, 25, 29 and 35 days of age to collect plasma and organ (liver, intestine and kidney) samples. Analysis revealed that ATP concentrations were lower in liver of piglets after weaning than during lactation (P < 0.05) thus suggesting a significant impact of weaning stress on mitochondrial energy production. Oxidative damage to DNA (8-hydroxy-2′-deoxyguanosine, 8-OHdG) and proteins (carbonyls) measured in plasma increased after weaning and this coincides with a rise in enzymatic antioxidant activity of glutathione peroxidase (GPx) and superoxide dismutase (SOD) (P < 0.05). Mitochondrial activities of both GPx and SOD are also significantly higher (P < 0.05) in kidney of piglets after weaning. Additionally, oxidative damage to macromolecules is more important in LBW piglets as measured concentrations of 8-OHdG and protein carbonyls are significantly higher (P < 0.05) in plasma and liver samples, respectively, than for NBW piglets. These results provide novel information about the nature, intensity and duration of weaning stress by revealing that weaning induces mitochondrial dysfunction and cellular oxidative stress conditions which last for at least 2 weeks and more severely impact smaller piglets.
A Vaisman manifold is a special kind of locally conformally Kähler manifold, which is closely related to a Sasaki manifold. In this paper, we show a basic structure theorem of simply connected homogeneous Sasaki and Vaisman manifolds of unimodular Lie groups, up to holomorphic isometry. For the case of unimodular Lie groups, we obtain a complete classification of simply connected Sasaki and Vaisman unimodular Lie groups, up to modification.
In this study, the thermal deformation of a machine tool structure due to the heat generated during operation was analyzed, and embedded cooling channels were applied to exchange the heat generated during the operation to achieve thermal error suppression. Then, the finite volume method was used to simulate the effect of cooling oil temperature on thermal deformation, and the effect of thermal suppression was experimentally studied using a feed system combined with a cooler to improve the positioning accuracy of the machine tool. In this study, the supply oil temperature in the structural cooling channels was found to significantly affect the position accuracy of the moving table and moving carrier. If the supply oil temperature in the cooling channels is consistent with the operational ambient temperature, the position accuracy of the moving table in the Y direction and the moving carrier in the X and Z directions has the best performance under different feed rates. From the thermal suppression experiments of the embedded cooling channels, the positioning accuracy of the feed system can be improved by approximately 25.5 % during the dynamic feeding process. Furthermore, when the hydrostatic guideway is cooled and dynamic feeding is conducted, positioning accuracy can be improved by up to 47.8 %. The machining accuracy can be improved by approximately 60 % on average by using the embedded cooling channels in this study. Therefore, thermal suppression by the cooling channels in this study can not only effectively improve the positioning accuracy but also enhance machining accuracy, proving that the method is effective for enhancing machine tool accuracy.