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In interventions for at-risk children, Tom Dishion strongly exhorted programs that are short term, cost-effective, and delivered in families’ own communities, just as resilience researchers underscore the need for programs that provide ongoing support for children's primary caregivers, and are implementable on a large scale. Presented here are preliminary results on a short-term intervention for mothers, the Authentic Connections Virtual Groups. A previous randomized trial of the in-person version of this program, conducted with mothers at high risk for stress and burnout, showed significant benefits. There had been zero dropouts across the 3-month program, and participants showed significant improvements on psychological indices as well as cortisol, even 3 months after the program ended. In the present study, virtual groups were conducted with five sets of women, all white-collar professionals with highly stressful, exacting careers, and most also primary caregivers of their children. Again, there were zero dropouts. Mean satisfaction ratings were 9.6 of 10, and the Net Promoter Score (promoters vs. detractors) fell in the “world class” range. To illuminate mechanisms of change, participants’ responses to open-ended questions on the groups’ value are presented verbatim. Recurrently mentioned were the development of new, authentic connections and invaluable ongoing support. These results, with the low costs and ease of women's attendance, attest to the value of expanding offerings such as these, toward benefiting even more highly stressed mothers themselves as well as the children for whose care they are responsible.
When a promising natural enemy of a key pest exists locally, it is a common practice in biological control (BC) to rear and release it for supplementary control in the targeted agroecosystem even though significant knowledge gaps concerning pre/post release may still exist. Incorporating genetic information into BC research fills some of these gaps. Habrobracon hebetor, a parasitoid of many economically important moths that infest stored and field crops worldwide is commonly used, particularly against the millet head miner (MHM), a key pest of millet in Sahelian countries. To advance our knowledge on how H. hebetor that occurs naturally in open-field cropping systems and grain stores as well as being mass-produced and released for MHM control, performs in millet agroecosystems in Niger we evaluated its population genetics using two mitochondrial and 21 microsatellite markers. The field samples were genetically more diverse and displayed heterozygote excess. Very few field samples had faced significant recent demographic bottlenecks. The mating system (i.e. nonrandom mating with complementary sex determination) of this species may be the major driver of these findings rather than bottlenecks caused by the small number of individuals released and the scarcity of hosts during the longlasting dry season in Niger. H. hebetor population structure was represented by several small patches and genetically distinct individuals. Gene flow occurred at local and regional scales through human-mediated and natural short-distance dispersal. These findings highlight the importance of the mating system in the genetic diversity and structure of H. hebetor populations, and contribute to our understanding of its reported efficacy against MHM in pearl millet fields.
Livestock is a major driver in most rural landscapes and economics, but it also polarises debate over its environmental impacts, animal welfare and human health. Conversely, the various services that livestock farming systems provide to society are often overlooked and have rarely been quantified. The aim of analysing bundles of services is to chart the coexistence and interactions between the various services and impacts provided by livestock farming, and to identify sets of ecosystem services (ES) that appear together repeatedly across sites and through time. We review three types of approaches that analyse associations among impacts and services from local to global scales: (i) detecting ES associations at system or landscape scale, (ii) identifying and mapping bundles of ES and impacts and (iii) exploring potential drivers using prospective scenarios. At a local scale, farming practices interact with landscape heterogeneity in a multi-scale process to shape grassland biodiversity and ES. Production and various ES provided by grasslands to farmers, such as soil fertility, biological regulations and erosion control, benefit to some extent from the functional diversity of grassland species, and length of pasture phase in the crop rotation. Mapping ES from the landscape up to the EU-wide scale reveals a frequent trade-off between livestock production on one side and regulating and cultural services on the other. Maps allow the identification of target areas with higher ecological value or greater sensitivity to risks. Using two key factors (livestock density and the proportion of permanent grassland within utilised agricultural area), we identified six types of European livestock production areas characterised by contrasted bundles of services and impacts. Livestock management also appeared to be a key driver of bundles of services in prospective scenarios. These scenarios simulate a breakaway from current production, legislation (e.g. the use of food waste to fatten pigs) and consumption trends (e.g. halving animal protein consumption across Europe). Overall, strategies that combine a reduction of inputs, of the use of crops from arable land to feed livestock, of food waste and of meat consumption deliver a more sustainable food future. Livestock as part of this sustainable future requires further enhancement, quantification and communication of the services provided by livestock farming to society, which calls for the following: (i) a better targeting of public support, (ii) more precise quantification of bundles of services and (iii) better information to consumers and assessment of their willingness to pay for these services.
Largely as a result of the expansion of oil palm Elaeis guineensis, forest fragmentation has occurred on a large scale in Borneo. There is much concern about how forest-dependent species, such as the Vulnerable sun bear Helarctos malayanus, can persist in this landscape. The absence of sufficient natural food in forest fragments could drive sun bears into oil palm plantations, where they risk coming into conflict with people. We interviewed oil palm plantation workers and farmers in the Lower Kinabatangan region of Sabah, Malaysian Borneo, to ascertain if sun bears were utilizing plantations, if they were causing damage to the crop, and how the bears were perceived by people. To obtain a comparative baseline we extended these questions to include other species as well. We found that bears were rarely encountered in plantations and were not considered to be destructive to the oil palm crop, although they were generally feared. Other species, such as macaques Macaca spp., bearded pigs Sus barbatus, and elephants Elephas maximus, had more destructive feeding habits. Sun bears could use this readily available food resource without being targeted for retribution, although incidental human-related mortality remains a risk. Although bears could gain some nutritional benefit from oil palm, plantations do not provide the diversity of food and cover available in a natural forest.
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.
To develop consensus recommendations for training future clinician educators (CEs) in emergency medicine (EM).
A panel of EM education leaders was assembled from across Canada and met regularly by teleconference over the course of 1 year. Recommendations for CE training were drafted based on the panel’s experience, a literature review, and a survey of current and past EM education leaders in Canada. Feedback was sought from attendees at the Canadian Association of Emergency Physicians (CAEP) annual academic symposium. Recommendations were distributed to the society’s Academic Section for further feedback and updated by a consensus of the expert panel.
Recommendations were categorized for one of three audiences: 1) Future CEs; 2) Academic departments and divisions (AD&D) that support training to fulfill their education leadership goals; and 3) The CAEP Academic Section. Advanced medical education training is recommended for any emergency physician or resident who pursues an education leadership role. Individuals should seek out mentorship in making decisions about career opportunities and training options. AD&D should regularly perform a needs assessment of their future CE needs and identify and encourage potential individuals who fulfill education leadership roles. AD&D should develop training opportunities at their institution, provide support to complete this training, and advocate for the recognition of education scholarship in their institutional promotions process. The CAEP Academic Section should support mentorship of future CEs on a national scale.
These recommendations serve as a framework for training and supporting the next generation of Canadian EM medical educators.
The Dark Energy Survey is undertaking an observational programme imaging 1/4 of the southern hemisphere sky with unprecedented photometric accuracy. In the process of observing millions of faint stars and galaxies to constrain the parameters of the dark energy equation of state, the Dark Energy Survey will obtain pre-discovery images of the regions surrounding an estimated 100 gamma-ray bursts over 5 yr. Once gamma-ray bursts are detected by, e.g., the Swift satellite, the DES data will be extremely useful for follow-up observations by the transient astronomy community. We describe a recently-commissioned suite of software that listens continuously for automated notices of gamma-ray burst activity, collates information from archival DES data, and disseminates relevant data products back to the community in near-real-time. Of particular importance are the opportunities that non-public DES data provide for relative photometry of the optical counterparts of gamma-ray bursts, as well as for identifying key characteristics (e.g., photometric redshifts) of potential gamma-ray burst host galaxies. We provide the functional details of the DESAlert software, and its data products, and we show sample results from the application of DESAlert to numerous previously detected gamma-ray bursts, including the possible identification of several heretofore unknown gamma-ray burst hosts.
To demonstrate the application of economics to health care preparedness by estimating the financial return on investment in a substate regional emergency response team and to develop a financial model aimed at sustaining community-level disaster readiness.
Economic evaluation methods were applied to the experience of a regional Pennsylvania response capability. A cost-benefit analysis was performed by using information on funding of the response team and 17 real-world events the team responded to between 2008 and 2013. By use of the results of the cost-benefit analysis as well as information on the response team’s catchment area, a risk-based insurance-like membership model was built.
The cost-benefit analysis showed a positive return after 6 years of investment in the regional emergency response team. Financial modeling allowed for the calculation of premiums for 2 types of providers within the emergency response team’s catchment area: hospitals and long-term care facilities.
The analysis indicated that preparedness activities have a positive return on their investment in this substate region. By applying economic principles, communities can estimate their return on investment to make better business decisions in an effort to increase the sustainability of emergency preparedness programs at the regional level. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2015;9:344–348)
Dislocation pattern formation is a phenomenon where during significant plastic deformation dislocations organize themselves into (meta)stable structures. Modeling such systems is a non-trivial task, because the number of interacting dislocations is high, bringing discrete simulation models to their computational limits. Continuum models, although more efficient, generally do not contain sufficient information for a physically detailed representation of such systems. In this paper we show how a continuum dislocation dynamics theory can be used to model idealized pattern formation. Furthermore, we show how discrete dislocation dynamics (DD) simulations can be used to provide physical input for our continuum model.
Fabry-Perot data of compact group galaxies have been used to show that the Tully-Fisher relation in any photometric band, for galaxies with vmax > 100 km/s, is very similar to that for galaxies in other less dense environments. In the low-luminosity end, however, a few compact group galaxies fall above the relation apparently because they are too bright for their mass. Here we show that if the mass is properly computed from spectral energy distribution fitting or mass modelling, for the low-luminosity galaxies, their positions in the stellar-mass or baryonic Tully-Fisher relation are what is expected for a normal Tully-Fisher relation and the outlying positions observed in the B and K Tully-Fisher relation could be explained by brightening of the low-luminosity interacting galaxies due to strong star formation or AGN activity.
Antimicrobial resistance (AR) is a growing problem worldwide and international travel, cross-border migration, and antimicrobial use may contribute to the introduction or emergence of AR. We examined AR rates and trends along the US–Mexico border by analysing microbiology data from eight US hospitals in three states bordering Mexico. Microbiology data were ascertained for the years 2000–2006 and for select healthcare and community pathogens including, three Gram-negative (Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Klebsiella pneumoniae) and three Gram-positive (Staphylococcus aureus, Enterococcus, Streptococcus pneumoniae) pathogens and 10 antimicrobial–pathogen combinations. Resistance was highest in S. aureus (oxacillin resistance 45·7%), P. aeruginosa (quinolone resistance 22·3%), and E. coli (quinolone resistance 15·6%); six (60%) of the 10 antimicrobial–pathogen combinations studied had a significantly increasing trend in resistance over the study period. Potential contributing factors in the hospital and community such as infection control practices and antimicrobial use (prescription and non-prescription) should be explored further in the US–Mexico border region.
We used data from BioSense, a national electronic surveillance system, to describe pneumonia in hospitalized patients with influenza-like illness (ILI). Ninety-five hospitals from 20 states reported ICD-9-CM-coded inpatient final diagnosis data during the study period of September 2007 to February 2010. We compared the characteristics of persons with and without pneumonia among those with ILI-related hospitalizations. BioSense captured 26 987 ILI-related inpatient hospitalizations; 8979 (33%) had a diagnosis of pneumonia. Analysis of trends showed highest counts of pneumonia during the 2007–2008 season and the second 2009 pandemic wave. Pneumonia was more common with increasing age. Microbiology and pharmacy data were available for a subset of patients; 107 (5%) with pneumonia had a bloodstream infection and 17% of patients were prescribed antiviral treatment. Our findings demonstrate the potential utility of electronic healthcare data to track trends in ILI and pneumonia, identify risk factors for disease, identify bacteraemia in patients with pneumonia, and monitor antiviral use.
A conservation tillage study provided the opportunity to test whether tillage effects on the germinable weed seedbank would be consistent across different crop rotations and to investigate the potential residual effects of herbicide treatments terminated 12 yr earlier. Our objective was to measure the effects of tillage (moldboard plow [MP] vs. chisel plow [CP] vs. no-till [NT]), crop rotation (2-yr barley–red clover followed by 4-yr barley–canola–wheat–soybean rotation, compared to a cereal monoculture), and of a prior weed management factor (three intensity levels of herbicide use) on the density, diversity, and community structure of weed seedbanks. Species richness, evenness (Shannon's E), and diversity (Shannon's H′) of spring seedbanks varied little across treatments and over time. Total seedbank density generally increased as tillage was reduced, with some variations due to weed management in 1993 and crop rotation in 2006. Crop rotations generally had smaller seedbanks with fewer species than the monoculture. In 1993, seedbanks with minimum weed management were twice as dense as those with intensive or moderate weed management (approximately 6,000 vs. 3,000 seed m−2). By 2006, seed density averaged 6,838 seed m−2 across intensive and moderate weed management regardless of tillage, but was nearly twice as large in NT (12,188 seed m−2) compared to MP (4,770 seed m−2) and CP (7,117 seed m−2) with minimum weed management (LSD0.005 = 4488). Species with abundant seedbanks responded differently to treatments. Barnyardgrass and green foxtail had larger seedbanks in the monoculture than in the rotation. Common lambsquarters and pigweed species had large seedbanks in tilled treatments in the rotation, whereas yellow foxtail and field pennycress contributed to the large seedbanks observed in NT treatments. The latter two species were also associated with residual effects of weed management treatments (terminated 12 yr earlier) in NT. The differential seedbank response of weed species, attributed in part to contrasting weed emergence patterns and agronomic practice effects on seed rain, explained some of the weak treatment effects observed for total seedbank density and diversity. The large weed seedbanks observed in NT plots after 18 yr confirms the importance of seed rain and seedbank management for the sustainability of NT systems.
Low temperature magnetization measurements of individual ferromagnetic particles and wires are presented (0.1 < T(K) < 6). The detector was a Nb micro-bridge-DC-SQUID, fabricated using electron-beam lithography. The angular dependence of the switching field could be explained approximatively by simple classical micromagnetic concepts (uniform rotation, curling…). However, dynamical measurements evidenced nucleation and propagation of domain walls, except for the smallest particles of about 20 nm. The variation of the mean switching field distribution (as a function of temperature and field sweeping rate) and of the probabilities of switching (as a function of temperature and the applied field) allowed to study in details the dynamics of magnetization reversal of individual particles. For sub-micron particles, we found that above a crossover temperature of 1K, the mean switching field and the switching probability follow a thermally activated model. For temperatures below IK, the dynamics of magnetization reversal becomes temperature independent which is interpreted in terms of deviations from the Néel-Brown model of magnetization reversal due to surface roughness and oxidazation. Although this crossovei temperature is much too large to be interpreted with current models of quantum tunneling, such an effect cannot be excluded. Measurements performed on ferromagnetic nanoparticles of good quality (single crystalline and with a diameter smaller than 25 nm), allowed us to show for the first time that the magnetization reversal can be described by thermal activation over the anisotropy energy barrier, as originally proposed by Néel. The observation of telegraph noise strengthens these results. Our measurements open the door to the observation of macroscopic quantum tunneling oí the magnetization in an individual particle containing 103-105 spins.
There is a general consensus in the literature that schizophrenia causes difficulties with facial emotion perception and discrimination. Functional brain imaging studies have observed reduced limbic activity during facial emotion perception but few studies have examined the relation to flat affect severity.
A total of 26 people with schizophrenia and 26 healthy controls took part in this event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging study. Sad, happy and neutral faces were presented in a pseudo-random order and participants indicated the gender of the face presented. Manual segmentation of the amygdala was performed on a structural T1 image.
Both the schizophrenia group and the healthy control group rated the emotional valence of facial expressions similarly. Both groups exhibited increased brain activity during the perception of emotional faces relative to neutral ones in multiple brain regions, including multiple prefrontal regions bilaterally, the right amygdala, right cingulate cortex and cuneus. Group comparisons, however, revealed increased activity in the healthy group in the anterior cingulate, right parahippocampal gyrus and multiple visual areas. In schizophrenia, the severity of flat affect correlated significantly with neural activity in several brain areas including the amygdala and parahippocampal region bilaterally.
These results suggest that many of the brain regions involved in emotional face perception, including the amygdala, are equally recruited in both schizophrenia and controls, but flat affect can also moderate activity in some other brain regions, notably in the left amygdala and parahippocampal gyrus bilaterally. There were no significant group differences in the volume of the amygdala.