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Tick-borne diseases (TBDs) can sometimes cause severe symptoms and lead to hospitalisation, but they often go unnoticed in the Emergency Department (ED). The aim of this study was twofold: (i) to describe the profile of patients hospitalised by TBDs; and (ii) to evaluate the data collected in the medical records from the ED in order to analyse their potential clinical consequences. A total of 84 cases that included all TBD diagnoses registered in the ED records were identified and analysed. These corresponded to all the hospitalisations by TBDs in the last 10 years (2009–2019) in two tertiary hospitals in Granada, Spain. Statistical analyses were made using RStudio. Coinciding with the absence of patient's report of exposure to ticks, 64.3% of TBDs were not suspected in the ED. Intensive care unit admission was required in 8.3% of cases, and the mortality rate was 2.4%. Non-suspected cases showed longer hospital stay (P < 0.001), treatment duration (P = 0.02) and delay in the initiation of antibiotic treatment (P < 0.001). Our findings indicate that symptoms associated with TBDs are highly non-specific. In the absence of explicit information related to potential tick exposure, TBDs are not initially suspected. As a consequence, elective treatment administration is delayed and hospitalisation time is prolonged. In conclusion, our results highlight the importance of addressing potential exposure to ticks during the ED contact with patients presenting with febrile syndrome.
Facial transplantation is emerging as a therapeutic option for self-inflicted gunshot wounds. The self-inflicted nature of this injury raises questions about the appropriate role of self-harm in determining patient eligibility. Potential candidates for facial transplantation undergo extensive psychosocial screening. The presence of a self-inflicted gunshot wound warrants special attention to ensure that a patient is prepared to undergo a demanding procedure that poses significant risk, as well as stringent lifelong management. Herein, we explore the ethics of considering mechanism of injury in the patient selection process, referring to the precedent set forth in solid organ transplantation. We also consider the available evidence regarding outcomes of individuals transplanted for self-inflicted mechanisms of injury in both solid organ and facial transplantation. We conclude that while the presence of a self-inflicted gunshot wound is significant in the overall evaluation of the candidate, it does not on its own warrant exclusion from consideration for a facial transplantation.
Analysis of the total surface energy γT and its three components as established by the van Oss-Chaudhury-Good Theory (vOCG) is conducted via Three Liquid Contact Angle Analysis (3LCAA). γT is correlated with the composition of the top monolayers (ML) obtained from High-Resolution Ion Beam Analysis (HR-IBA). Control of γT enables surface engineering for wafer bonding (Nano-BondingTM) and/or epitaxial growth. Native oxides on boron-doped p-Si(100) are found to average γT of 53 ± 1.4 mJ/m2) and are always hydrophilic. An HF in methanol or aqueous HF etch for 60 s always renders Si(100) hydrophobic. Its γT decreases by 20% to 44 ± 3 mJ/m2 in HF in methanol etch and by 10% to 48 ± 3 mJ/m2 in aqueous HF. On the contrary, GaAs(100) native oxides are found to always be hydrophobic. Tellurium n+-doped GaAs(100) yields an average of γT of 37 ± 2 mJ/m2, 96% of which is due to the Lifshitz-Van der Waals molecular interactions (γLW = 36 ± 1 mJ/m2). However, hydrophobic GaAs(100) can be made highly hydrophilic. After etching, γT increases by almost 50% to 66 ± 1.4 mJ/m2. 3LCAA shows that the γT increase is due to electron acceptor and donor interactions, while the Lifshitz-van der Waals energy γLW remains constant. IBA combining the 3.039 ± 0.01 MeV oxygen nuclear resonance with <111> channeling, shows that oxygen on Si(100) decreases by 10% after aqueous HF etching, from 13.3 ± 0.3 monolayers (ML) to 11.8 ± 0.4 ML 1 hour after etch.Te-doped GaAs(100) exhibits consistent oxygen coverage of 7.2 ± 1.4 ML, decreasing by 50% after etching to a highly hydrophilic surface with 3.6 ± 0.2 oxygen ML. IBA shows that etching does not modify the GaAs surface stoichiometry to within 1% . Combining 3LCAA with HR-IBA provides a quantitative metrology to measure how GaAs and Si surfaces can be altered to a different hydroaffinity and surface termination.
The effects of crystal orientation and doping on the surface energy, γT, of native oxides of Si(100) and Si(111) are measured via Three Liquid Contact Angle Analysis (3LCAA) to extract γT, while Ion Beam Analysis (IBA) is used to detect Oxygen. During 3LCAA, contact angles for three liquids are measured with photographs via the “Drop and Reflection Operative Program (DROP™). DROP™ removes subjectivity in image analysis, and yields reproducible contact angles within < ±1°. Unlike to the Sessile Drop Method, DROP can yield relative errors < 3% on sets of 20-30 drops. Native oxides on 5 x 1013 B/cm3 p- doped Si(100) wafers, as received in sealed, 25 wafer teflon boats continuously stored in Class 100/ISO 5 conditions at 24.5°C in 25% controlled humidity, are found to be hydrophilic. Their γT, 52.5 ± 1.5 mJ/m2, is reproducible between four boats from three sources, and 9% greater than γT of native oxides on n- doped Si(111), which averages 48.1 ± 1.6 mJ/m2 on four 4” Si(111) wafers. IBA combining 16O nuclear resonance with channeling detects 30% more oxygen on native oxides of Si(111) than Si(100). While γT should increase on thinner, more defective oxides, Lifshitz-Van der Waals interactions γLW on native oxides of Si(100) remain at 36 ± 0.4 mJ/m2, equal to γLW on Si(111), 36 ± 0.6 mJ/m2, since γLW arises from the same SiO2 molecules. Native oxides on 4.5 x 1018 B/cm3 p+ doped Si(100) yield a γT of 39 ± 1 mJ/m2, as they are thicker per IBA. In summary, 3LCAA and IBA can detect reproducibly and accurately, within a few %, changes in the surface energy of native oxides due to thickness and surface composition arising from doping or crystal structure, if conducted in well controlled clean room conditions for measurements and storage.
This study investigated the potential application of genomic selection under a multi-breed scheme in the Spanish autochthonous beef cattle populations using a simulation study that replicates the structure of linkage disequilibrium obtained from a sample of 25 triplets of sire/dam/offspring per population and using the BovineHD Beadchip. Purebred and combined reference sets were used for the genomic evaluation and several scenarios of different genetic architecture of the trait were investigated. The single-breed evaluations yielded the highest within-breed accuracies. Across breed accuracies were found low but positive on average confirming the genetic connectedness between the populations. If the same genotyping effort is split in several populations, the accuracies were lower when compared with single-breed evaluation, but showed a small advantage over small-sized purebred reference sets over the accuracies of subsequent generations. Besides, the genetic architecture of the trait did not show any relevant effect on the accuracy with the exception of rare variants, which yielded slightly lower results and higher loss of predictive ability over the generations.
Polyurethane-based bioadhesive was synthesized with polyols derived from castor oil (chemically modified and unmodified) and hexamethylene diisocyanate with chitosan addition as a bioactive filler. The objective was to evaluate the effect of type of polyols with the incorporation of low-concentrations of chitosan on the mechanical and biological properties of the polymer to obtain suitable materials in the design of biomaterials. The results showed that increasing physical crosslinking increased the mechanical and adhesive properties. An in vitro cytotoxic test of polyurethanes showed cellular viability. The biocompatibility of the polyurethanes favors the adhesion of L929 cells at 6, 24, and 48 h. The polyurethanes showed bacterial inhibition depending on the polyol and percentage of chitosan. The antibacterial effect of the polyurethanes for Escherichia coli decreased 60–90% after 24 h. The mechanical and adhesive properties together with biological response in this research suggested these polyurethanes as external application tissue bioadhesives.
Using the liquid phase epitaxy technique (LPE) Ga0.86In0.14As0.13Sb0.87 layers lattice-matched to (100) Te-GaSb have been deposited, which were intentionally doped with Te and Zn in a wide range. The Raman spectra show that the layers become more defective as the dopant molar fraction is increased. Two main vibrational bands are observed in the Raman spectra centred at 230 and 245 cm-1 that depend strongly on the Te (Zn) molar concentration, which are assigned to the vibrational modes GaAs-like and to (GaSb+InAs)-like mixture. The low-temperature photoluminescence of n (p)-type GaInAsSb was obtained as a function of Te (Zn) concentration added to the melt solution. The photoluminescence was interpreted taking into account nonparabolicity of the conduction (valence) band. It is shown that the band-to-band radiative transition energy can be used to estimate the free carrier concentration in GaInAsSb, for a wide range of doping concentration.
Slaughter is a crucial step in the meat production chain that could induce psychological stress on each animal, resulting in a physiological response that can differ among individuals. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between an animal’s emotional state, the subsequent psychological stress at slaughter and the cellular damage as an effect. In all, 36 entire male pigs were reared at an experimental farm and a cognitive bias test was used to classify them into positive bias (PB) or negative bias (NB) groups depending on their decision-making capabilities. Half of the animals, slaughtered in the same batch, were used for a complete study of biomarkers of stress, including brain neurotransmitters and some muscle biomarkers of oxidative stress. After slaughter, specific brain areas were excised and the levels of catecholamines (noradrenaline (NA) and dopamine (DA)) and indoleamines (5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid and serotonin (5HT)) were analyzed. In addition, muscle proteasome activity (20S), antioxidant defence (total antioxidant activity (TAA)), oxidative damage (lipid peroxidation (LPO)) and autophagy biomarkers (Beclin-1, microtubule-associated protein I light chain 3 (LC3-I) and LC3-II) were monitored during early postmortem maturation (0 to 24 h). Compared with PB animals, NB pigs were more susceptible to stress, showing higher 5HT levels (P<0.01) in the hippocampus and lower DA (P<0.001) in the pre-frontal cortex. Furthermore, NB pigs had more intense proteolytic processes and triggered primary muscle cell survival mechanisms immediately after slaughter (0 h postmortem), thus showing higher TAA (P<0.001) and earlier proteasome activity (P<0.001) and autophagy (Beclin-1, P<0.05; LC3-II/LC3-I, P<0.001) than PB pigs, in order to counteract the induced increase in oxidative stress, that was significantly higher in the muscle of NB pigs at 0 h postmortem (LPO, P<0.001). Our study is the first to demonstrate that pig’s cognitive bias influences the animal’s susceptibility to stress and has important effects on the postmortem muscle metabolism, particularly on the cell antioxidant defences and the autophagy onset. These results expand the current knowledge regarding biomarkers of animal welfare and highlight the potential use of biomarkers of the proteasome, the autophagy (Beclin-1, LC3-II/LC3-I ratio) and the muscle antioxidant defence (TAA, LPO) for detection of peri-slaughter stress.
The Spanish local beef cattle breeds have most likely common origin followed by a process of differentiation. This particular historical evolution has most probably left detectable signatures in the genome. The objective of this study was to identify genomic regions associated with differentiation processes in seven Spanish autochthonous populations (Asturiana de los Valles (AV), Avileña-Negra Ibérica (ANI), Bruna dels Pirineus (BP), Morucha (Mo), Pirenaica (Pi), Retinta (Re) and Rubia Gallega (RG)). The BovineHD 777K BeadChip was used on 342 individuals (AV, n=50; ANI, n=48; BP, n=50; Mo, n=50; Pi, n=48; Re, n=48; RG, n=48) chosen to be as unrelated as possible. We calculated the fixation index (FST) and performed a Bayesian analysis named SelEstim. The output of both procedures was very similar, although the Bayesian analysis provided a richer inference and allowed us to calculate significance thresholds by generating a pseudo-observed data set from the estimated posterior distributions. We identified a very large number of genomic regions, but when a very restrictive significance threshold was applied these regions were reduced to only 10. Among them, four regions can be highlighted because they comprised a large number of single nucleotide polymorphisms and showed extremely high signals (Kullback–Leiber divergence (KLD)>6). They are located in BTA 2 (5 575 950 to 10 152 228 base pairs (bp)), BTA 5 (17 596 734 to 18 850 702 bp), BTA 6 (37 853 912 to 39 441 548 bp) and BTA 18 (13 345 515 to 15 243 838 bp) and harbor, among others, the MSTN (Myostatin), KIT-LG (KIT Ligand), LAP3 (leucine aminopeptidase 3), NAPCG (non-SMC condensing I complex, subunit G), LCORL (ligand dependent nuclear receptor corepressor-like) and MC1R (Melanocortin 1 receptor) genes. Knowledge on these genomic regions allows to identify potential targets of recent selection and helps to define potential candidate genes associated with traits of interest, such as coat color, muscle development, fertility, growth, carcass and immunological response.
The improvement in porcine embryo preservation and non-surgical embryo transfer (ET) procedures achieved in recent years represents essential progress for the practical use of ET in the pig industry. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of parity, weaning-to-estrus interval (WEI) and season on reproductive and embryonic parameters at day 6 after insemination of donor sows superovulated after weaning. The selection of donor sows was based on their reproductive history, body condition and parity. The effects of parity at weaning (2 to 3, 4 to 5 or 6 to 7 litters), season (fall, winter and spring), and WEI (estrus within 3 to 4 days), and their interactions on the number of corpus luteum, cysts in sows with cysts, number and quality of viable and transferable embryos, embryo developmental stage and recovery and fertilization rates were evaluated using linear mixed effects models. The analyses showed a lack of significant effects of parity, season, WEI or their interactions on any of the reproductive and embryonic parameters examined. In conclusion, these results demonstrate that fertilization rates and numbers of viable and transferable embryos collected at day 6 of the cycle from superovulated donor sows are not affected by their parity, regardless of the time of the year (from fall to spring) and WEI (3 or 4 days).
The formation process(es) of fullerenes in space is still uncertain and several mechanisms have been proposed in the literature. In particular, the most accepted idea to explain the simultaneous presence of fullerenes and PAH-like emission in the H-rich circumstellar envelopes of PNe is that these molecular species may be formed from the photochemical processing of a carbonaceous compound with a mixture of aromatic and aliphatic structures, which should be a major constituent of their circumstellar envelopes. Here we present seeing-limited narrow-band mid-IR GTC/CanariCam images of the fullerene-containing PN IC 418. The narrow-band images cover the 9−13, 11.3, and 17.4 μm emission features (and their adjacent continua) in this extended PN. We study the relative sub-arcsecond spatial distribution of the nebula in these filters with the intention of getting some clues about the formation process of fullerenes in H-rich circumstellar environments.
We present a database of 11 interplanetary shocks associated to coronal mass ejections (CMEs) observed by STEREO and Wind missions between 2006 and 2011 that show evidence of Type II radio burst. For all events, we calculated the principal characteristics of the shock driver, the intensity and geometrical configuration of the in-situ shock and checked for the existence of in-situ type II radio burst. We made a comparative analysis of two CME events (on 18 August 2010 and 4 June 2011), which are apparently associated to two or more magnetic structures which interact in space (i.e. CMEs, SIRs, CIRs). These events show varied shock configurations and intensities. We found evidence of in-situ type II radio bursts in one of the events studied, suggesting that the geometry of the shock (quasi-perpendicularity) is also critical for the generation and/or detection of radio emission in-situ.
Bulk outflow or global expansion velocities are presented for a large number of planetary nebulae (PNe) that span a wide range of evolutionary stages and different stellar populations. The sample comprises 133 PNe from the Galactic bulge, 100 mature and highly evolved PNe from the disk, 11 PNe from the Galactic halo and 15 PNe with very low central star masses and low metallicities, for a total of 259 PNe. These results reveal from a statistical perspective the kinematic evolution of the expansion velocities of PNe in relation to changing characteristics of the central star’s wind and ionizing luminosity and as a function of the evolutionary rate determined by the central (CS) mass. The large number of PNe utilized in this work for each group of PNe under study and the homogeneity of the data provide for the first time a solid benchmark form observations for model predictions, as has been described by López et al. (2016).
We review the state of our chemical evolution models for spiral and low mass galaxies. We analyze the consequences of using different stellar yields, infall rate laws and star formation prescriptions in the time/redshift evolution of the radial distributions of abundances, and other quantities as star formation rate or gas densities, in the Milky Way Galaxy; In particular we will study the evolution of the oxygen abundance radial gradient analyzing its relation with the ratio SFR/infall. We also compare the results with our old chemical evolution models, cosmological simulations and with the existing data, mainly with the planetary nebulae abundances.
The optical and structural properties of co-doped HfO2 thin films with rare earth trivalent ions prepared by ultrasonic spray pyrolysis technique, are reported. An arrangement of multi-layer (Si-SiO2-HfO2:Eu3+-HfO2:Tb3+-HfO2:Tm3+-SiO2) were deposited on silicon substrates at temperatures from 400 to 550°C, using acetyl acetonates as precursory reagents. A refractive index value of 2.1 was determined by spectral ellipsometry. The surface morphology was obtained by AFM measurements. For 50 to 550 nm thickness films, an average roughness value of ∼56.8 Å was obtained for different substrate temperatures and grown deposition times. EDS measurements showed the presence of hafnium, and rare earths dopants as elemental composition. XPS measurements demonstrated that hafnium and rare earths oxidation species are formed at hafnium dioxide thin films. Photoluminescence emission spectra of multi-layer structures present characteristic emission peaks associated with Tb+3, Eu3+, and Tm3+ dopants. The results presented above motivate us to consider that these multilayer structures could be appropriate to be used as a rare earth host to improve optical emission.
The alloy composed of zirconium has been used effectively for over 50 years in claddings of nuclear fuel, especially for PWR type reactors. However, to increase fuel enrichment with the aim of rising the burning and maintaining the safety of nuclear plants, is of great relevance the study of new materials that can replace safely and efficiently zircaloy cladding. Among several proposed material, silicon carbide (SiC) has a potential to replace zircaloy as fuel cladding material due to its high-temperature tolerance, chemical stability and a low absorption cross-section for thermal neutrons. In this paper, the goal is to expand the study with silicon carbide cladding, checking its behavior when submitted to an environment with burnable poison variations, the impact on multiplication factor and reactivity coefficients to both claddings: zircaloy and silicon carbide. The neutronic analysis was made using the SCALE 6.0 (Standardized Computer Analysis for Licensing Evaluation) code. This code system is widely accepted and used worldwide for safety analysis, and criticality of nuclear reactors has been utilized to model a typical fuel element of a PWR.
The present work is a study on alkali activation of Mexican blast furnace slag, using sodium silicate. The aim is to produce an optimal specimen, homogeneous without carbonation, and with small fraction of crystalline phases, similar to CSH, which provide mechanical properties suitable to use in the construction industry. The samples were prepared using sodium silicate activator solutions with modulus (SiO2/Na2O) of 1.25, 1.5, and 1.75. The weight percentage of Na2O in the activator solutions was added at 4, 6 and 8% relative to the slag weight. The prepared samples were stored in sealed molds, at room temperature (20°C), during 7 days. The X-ray diffraction has revealed the presence of an amorphous phase, semi crystalline clinotobermorite phase and signals of calcium carbonate for the samples of 4 and 6 % of Na2O; in contrast with the 8% Na2O, where the latter signals almost disappeared. The specimen selected as optimal was prepared with an activator concentration of 8% of Na2O /Slag, and SiO2/Na2O of 1.25. A specimen under these optimal conditions was prepared with accelerated curing (40°C, humidity, 48 hours), and a compressive strength test was attained, with an average value of 52 MPa at 3 days.
Tensile strength of concrete is limited and therefore is sensitive to crack formation. Steel reinforcement is added to bear the tensile forces; nonetheless, this does not completely omit crack formation. Repair of cracks in concrete is time-consuming and expensive. Self-sealing and self-healing of cracks upon appearance would therefore be a convenient property. We propose a mechanism to obtain self-repair of the concrete by adding soluble silicates (ASS) which will induce a self-sealing and self-healing process catalyzed by natural periods of wet and dry states of the concrete. Self-sealing approaches prevent the ingress of harsh chemical substances which may deteriorate the concrete matrix. This can be achieved by self-healing of concrete cracks (e.g. further cement hydration, calcium carbonate precipitation) and autonomous healing (e.g. further hydration of partially soluble silicates added as healing agents). The autogenous healing efficiency depends on the amount of deposited reaction products (ASS), its solubility (ratio of calcium to sodium silicate), the availability of water, and the crack width (restricted by adding microfibers). The self-sealing efficiency is generally evaluated by measuring the decrease in water permeability and air flow through the crack. The healing efficiency is usually evaluated by testing concrete´s regain in mechanical properties after crack formation; by reloading the cracked and autonomously healed specimen and comparing the obtained mechanical properties with the original ones. Self-sealing and self-healing of concrete gives a broad perspective and new possibilities to make future concrete structures more durable.
The objective of this study was to assess the effectiveness of a catheter-related bloodstream infection (CR BSI) reduction programme and healthcare workers' compliance with recommendations. A 3-year surveillance programme of CR BSIs in all hospital settings was implemented. As part of the programme, there was a direct observation of insertion and maintenance of central venous catheters (CVCs) to determine performance. A total of 38 education courses were held over the study period and feedback reports with the results of surveillance and recommendations were delivered to healthcare workers every 6 months. A total of 6722 short-term CVCs were inserted in 4982 patients for 58 763 catheter-days. Improvements of compliance with hand hygiene was verified at the insertion (87·1–100%, P < 0·001) and maintenance (51·1–72·1%, P = 0·029) of CVCs; and the use of chlorhexidine for skin disinfection was implemented at insertion (35·7–65·4%, P < 0·001) and maintenance (33·3–45·9%, P < 0·197) of CVCs. There were 266 CR BSI incidents recorded with an annual incidence density of 5·75/1000 catheter-days in the first year, 4·38 in the second year [rate ratio (RR) 0·76, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0·57–1·01] and 3·46 in the third year (RR 0·60, 95% CI 0·44–0·81). The education programme clearly improved compliance with recommendations for CVC handling, and was effective in reducing the burden of CR BSIs.
In traditional transit timing variations (TTVs) analysis of multi-planetary systems, the individual TTVs are first derived from transit fitting and later modelled using n-body dynamic simulations to constrain planetary masses. We show that fitting simultaneously the transit light curves with the system dynamics (photo-dynamical model) increases the precision of the TTV measurements and helps constrain the system architecture. We exemplify the advantages of applying this photo-dynamical model to a multi-planetary system found in K2 data very close to 3:2 mean motion resonance, K2-19. In this case the period of the larger TTV variations (libration period) is much longer (>1.5 years) than the duration of the K2 observations (80 days). However, our method allows to detect the short period TTVs produced by the orbital conjunctions between the planets that in turn permits to uniquely characterise the system. Therefore, our method can be used to constrain the masses of near-resonant systems even when the full libration curve is not observed.