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Objective: To investigate the effects of methylphenidate on long-term executive and neuropsychological functioning in children with attention problems following TBI, as well as the relationship between methylphenidate associated changes in lab-based neuropsychological measures of attentional control, processing speed, and executive functioning and parent- or self-report measures of everyday executive functioning. Method: 26 children aged 6–17 years, who were hospitalized for moderate-to-severe blunt head trauma 6 or more months previously, were recruited from a large children’s hospital medical center. Participants were randomized into a double-masked, placebo-controlled cross-over clinical trial. Participants completed a comprehensive neuropsychological battery and parent- and self-report ratings of everyday executive functioning at baseline, and at 4 weeks and 8 weeks following upward titration of medication to an optimal dose or while administered a placebo. Results: Methylphenidate was associated with significant improvements in processing speed, sustained attention, and both lab-based and everyday executive functioning. Significant treatment-by-period interactions were found on a task of sustained attention. Participants who were randomized to the methylphenidate condition for the first treatment period demonstrated random or erratic responding, with slower and more variable response times when given placebo during the second period. Conclusion: Results indicate that methylphenidate treatment is associated with positive outcomes in processing speed, sustained attention, and both lab-based and everyday measures of executive functioning compared to placebo group. Additionally, results suggest sustained attention worsens when discontinuing medication. (JINS, 2019, 25, 740–749)
Telomere length is widely considered as a marker of biological aging. Clinical studies have reported associations between reduced telomere length and hypertension. The aim of this study was to compare telomere length in hypertensive and normotensive mice at pre-disease and established disease time points to determine whether telomere length differs between the strains before and after the onset of disease. Genomic DNA was extracted from kidney and heart tissues of 4-, 12-, and 20-week-old male hypertensive (BPH/2J) and normotensive (BPN/3J) mice. Relative telomere length (T/S) was measured using quantitative PCR. Age was inversely correlated with telomere length in both strains. In 4-week-old pre-hypertensive animals, no difference in T/S was observed between BPH/2J and BPN/3J animals in kidney or heart tissue (kidney p = 0.14, heart p = 0.06). Once the animals had established disease, at 12 and 20 weeks, BPH/2J mice had significantly shorter telomeres when compared to their age-matched controls in both kidney (12 weeks p < 0.001 and 20 weeks p = 0.004) and heart tissues (12 weeks p < 0.001 and 20 weeks p < 0.001). This is the first study to show that differences in telomere lengths between BPH/2J and BPN/3J mice occur after the development of hypertension and do not cause hypertension in the BPH/2J mice.
A high proportion of piglets fail to adapt to the changing composition of their diet at weaning, resulting in weight loss and increased susceptibility to pathogens. Polyamines are present in sow milk and promote neonatal maturation of the gut. We hypothesised that oral spermine and spermidine supplementation before weaning would increase piglet growth and promote gastrointestinal development at weaning. In Experiment One, one pair of liveweight (LW)-matched piglets per litter from first and third lactation sows received 2 ml of a 0 (Control) or 463 nmol/ml spermine solution at 14, 16, 18, 20 and 22 days of age (n=6 piglets/treatment per parity). Villus height and crypt depth in the duodenum and jejunum were measured at weaning (day 23 postpartum). In Experiment Two, piglets suckling 18 first and 18 third lactation sows were used. Within each litter, piglets received 2 ml of either water (Control), 463 nmol/ml spermine solution or 2013 nmol/ml spermidine solution at 14, 16, 18, 22 and 24 days of age (n=54 piglets/treatment per sow parity). Piglets were weighed individually at 14, 18, 24 (weaning) and 61 days of age. In Experiment One, oral spermine supplementation resulted in a 41% increase in villus height, a 21% decrease in crypt depth and 79% decrease in the villus height : crypt depth ratio compared with control piglets (P<0.01). In Experiment Two, spermine and spermidine-supplemented piglets suckling first lactation sows grew faster (P<0.05) between days 14 and 18 postpartum than control piglets: 0.230±0.011 and 0.227±0.012 v. 0.183±0.012 kg/day, respectively. Spermine supplementation tended (P<0.1) to increase piglet LW gain from weaning to day 37 post-weaning compared with control piglets (0.373±0.009 v. 0.341±0.010 kg/day). In conclusion, spermine supplementation increased villus height at weaning, and appears to have the potential to improve the pre- and post-weaning growth of conventionally weaned piglets.
We discuss the role of Configuration Interaction (CI) and the influence of the number of
configurations taken into account in the calculations of nickel and iron spectral
opacities provided by the OPAC international collaboration, including statistical
approaches (SCO, CASSANDRA, STA), detailed accounting (OPAS, LEDCOP, OP, HULLAC-v9) or
hybrid method (SCO-RCG). Opacity calculations are presented for a temperature T of 27.3 eV
and a density of 3.4 mg/cm3, conditions relevant for pulsating stellar
The Supernova Working Group was re-established at the IAU XXV General Assembly in Sydney, 21 July 2003, sponsored by Commissions 28 (Galaxies) and 47 (Cosmology). Here we report on some of its activities since 2005.
The Keck Interferometer Nuller (KIN) is one of the major scientific and technical precursors to the Terrestrial Planet Finder Interferometer (TPF-I) mission. KIN's primary objective is to measure the level of exo-zodiacal mid-infrared emission around nearby main sequence stars, which requires deep broad-band nulling of astronomical sources of a few Janskys at 10 microns. A number of new capabilitites are needed in order to reach that goal with the Keck telescopes: mid-infrared coherent recombination, interferometric operation in “split pupil” mode, N-band optical path stabilization using K-band fringe tracking and internal metrology, and eventually, active atmospheric dispersion correction. We report here on the progress made implementing these new functionalities, and discuss the initial levels of extinction achieved on the sky.
Dental enamel is a unique composite bioceramic material that is the hardest tissue in the vertebrate body, containing long-, thin-crystallites of substituted hydroxyapatite. Enamel functions under immense loads in a bacterial-laden environment, and generally without catastrophic failure over a lifetime for the organism. Unlike all other biogenerated hard tissues of mesodermal origin, such as bone and dentin, enamel is produced by ectoderm-derived cells called ameloblasts. Recent investigations on the formation of enamel using cell and molecular approaches have been coupled to biomechanical investigations at the nanoscale and mesoscale levels. For amelogenin, the principle protein of forming enamel, two domains have been identified that are required for the proper assembly of multimeric units of amelogenin to form nanospheres. One domain is at the amino-terminus and the other domain in the carboxyl-terminal region. Amelogenin nanospheres are believed to influence the hydroxyapatite crystal habit. Both the yeast two-hybrid assay and surface plasmon resonance have been used to examine the assembly properties of engineered amelogenin proteins. Amelogenin protein was engineered using recombinant DNA techniques to contain deletions to either of the two self-assembly domains. Amelogenin protein was also engineered to contain single amino-acid mutations/substitutions in the amino-terminal self-assembly domain; and these amino-acid changes are based upon point mutations observed in humans affected with a hereditary disturbance of enamel formation. All of these alterations reveal significant defects in amelogenin self-assembly into nanospheres in vitro. Transgenic animals containing these same amelogenin deletions illustrate the importance of a physiologically correct bio-fabrication of the enamel protein extracellular matrix to allow for the organization of the enamel prismatic structure.
The development and status of a novel electrospray system, capable of a variety of applications, including the fabrication of tissue engineered structures is described. The system requirements dictate the following key components: a micro-fabricated silicon electrospray emitter, a mass spectrometer capable of selecting molecules having a charge to mass ratio up to 32, 000 with a resolution of 10, 000, and an integrated ion optics system permitting depositing the selected molecules ‘softly’ onto a target with a spatial resolution of 0.1μm. One critical feature of the system is the overall efficiency of transferring biomolecules from a buffer solution, typically comprising water, acetonitrile and ammonium acetate, into an ion flux. Commercial ES/MS systems are generally designed with simplicity of operation as a design driver, together with the low probability of transmitting spray droplets directly into the quadrupole mass selection system. This has focused attention onto the detailed design and characterization of the electrospray emitter and the environment into which the spray is launched. This has highlighted the need to evaluate in detail, an electrospray operating into a low pressure environment and to improve our understanding of the interaction between voltage and flow rate in the transition from nano-electrospray mode, wherein no positive pressure is applied to the fluid and normal electrospray mode, close to minimum flow rate. Early results of this investigation are presented. There is evidence that at reduced ambient pressure there is a small reduction in spray current, however this is offset by improved transmission of the beam into the first quadrupole stage.
Skeletal series recovered by archaeologists frequently display patterns of death that differ from those of typical living, or historically documented, populations. Some of these prehistoric patterns are extremely widespread. Widespread patterns include notably small proportions of infants (see e.g., Acsádi and Nemeskéri 1970; Lovejoy et al. 1977; Buikstra et al. 1986), high proportions of older children and young adults (see e.g., Acsádi and Nemeskéri 1970; Weiss 1973; Lovejoy et al. 1977; Keckler 1997; Paine 1997), and an apparent excess of female death during the young adult years (Acsádi and Neméskeri 1970; Boldsen and Paine 1995, 1999). Most paleodemographers would agree that the small proportion of infants is primarily an issue of preservation and recovery (e.g., Buikstra et al. 1986). The other patterns have produced a wide range of explanations ranging from concerns about the archaeological process and paleodemographic methods (Bocquet-Appel and Masset 1982, 1996; Walker et al. 1988; Konigsberg and Frankenberg 1994; Konigsberg et al. 1997), to epidemiological ones (e.g., Lovejoy et al. 1977).
Relationships between demographic characteristics of a living population and a skeletal series recovered from it are not straightforward (Sattenspiel and Harpending 1983; Wood et al. 1992; Paine 1997). If we wish to understand the demography of the living population, we must develop explicit, testable models (see e.g., Keckler 1997; Paine 1997, 2000) that clearly define relationships between the two (Howell 1982; Wood et al. 1992).
Hafnium-based dielectrics are under wide consideration for high-K gate dielectric applications. Since the gate electrode typically used in CMOS integration consists of polysilicon with n- or p-type dopants, compatibility of the HfO2 layer with the polySi deposition and dopant activation steps is critical. Capacitors were fabricated with HfO2 films deposited by ALD and MOCVD, and using polysilicon gate electrodes deposited by CVD processes. These devices showed leakage failures with yields that were observed to depend on the area, dielectric thickness and annealing conditions during the process. Investigation of the root cause of these leakage failures suggested that the leakage failures may be caused by a defect-related mechanism. The implication of this is that the leakage occurs at localized ‘defect’ sites rather than broadly through the HfO2 layer. Emission microscopy analysis and physical characterization of the HfO2 film were used to corroborate the proposed model. Defect density was observed to be strongly dependent on the processing of the dielectric film. In order to make Hf-based dielectric stacks compatible with polysilicon for conventional CMOS transistor integration with acceptable yield, further postdeposition treatment may be necessary to eliminate or cure the defects.
Interfacial chemistry at indium tin oxide/polymer interfaces is of fundamental importance for the performance of polymer-based light emitting diodes. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and Rutherford backscattering spectrometry are used to investigate the stability of the interface formed between indium tin oxide and (i) the light emitting polymer poly(p-phenylenevinylene), and (ii) the hole injecting layer poly(3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene) polystyrenesulfonate. The formed interfaces are not stable and indium-containing species diffuse from the metal oxide surface into the polymer layers.
Transparent p-n heterojunction diodes are fabricated using p-type CuYO2:Ca and n-type ZnO:Al thin films on a glass substrate coated with indium-tin oxide (ITO). The contact between the n-ZnO:Al / p-CuYO2:Ca heterojunction is found to be rectifying, while the ITO / ZnO:Al contact is ohmic. The typical ratio of forward to reverse current is 15 in the range -3 to 3V. The diode current-voltage characteristics are dominated by the flow of space charge limited current, which is ascribed to the existence of an insulating ZnO interfacial layer. The diode structure has a total thickness of 0.85 μm and an optical transmission of 40%-50% in the visible region.
This paper reports the microstructure and physical properties of ferroelectric capacitors formed from SrBi2Ta2O9(SBT) layers on Si with various buffer layers including jet-vapor deposited silicon nitride, zirconium oxide, hafnium oxide and thermally grown silicon oxide. Results from cross-sectional transmission electron microscopy (X-TEM), energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS), X-Ray diffraction (XRD), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and non-contact atomic force microscopy (nc-AFM) data coupled with capacitance-voltage (C-V) and current- voltage (I-V) data indicate that both the microstructure and physical properties of SBT films deposited on silicon are dependent on the buffer layer material employed.
Single-phase, spinel zinc stannate (ZTO = Zn2SnO4) thin films were grown by rf magnetron sputtering onto glass substrates. Uniaxially oriented films with resistivities of 10−2 -10−3 ωcm, mobilities of 16 - 26 cm2/V-s, and n-type carrier concentrations in the low 1019 cm−3 range were achieved. X-ray diffraction peak intensity studies established the films to be in the inverse spinel configuration. 119Sn Mössbauer studies identified two octahedral Sn sites, each with a unique quadrupole splitting, but with a common isomer shift consistent with Sn+4. A pronounced Burstein-Moss shift moved the optical bandgap from 3.35 eV to as high as 3.89 eV.
Density-of-states effective mass, relaxation time, mobility, Fermi energy level, and a scattering parameter were calculated from transport data. Effective-mass values increased with carrier concentration from 0.16 to 0.26 me as the Fermi energy increased from 0.2 to 0.9 eV above the conduction-band minimum. First-order nonparabolic conduction-band theory was applied to extrapolate a bottom-of-the-band effective mass of 0.15 me. Calculated scattering parameters and temperature-dependent transport measurements correlated well with ionized impurity scattering with screening by free electrons for highly degenerate films.
The component tissues of teeth include an outer enamel cover over underlying dentin. Enamel is almost completely inorganic mineral, so much so that it has been said that teeth emerge into the mouth as preformed fossils (Boyde, 1996). While this notion certainly reflects the biological function of teeth as elements of the masticatory apparatus, it regrettably and erroneously implies that the formation of teeth is a simple or passive affair. This is not the case and the dentition represents a remarkable and elegant biological adaptation of dermal appendages whose emergence coincides with vertebrate radiation. This is not surprising since teeth provide for increased nutrition through enhanced food processing, as well as providing formidable weapons of offense and defense, and hence, animals bearing teeth might well be predicted to compete more efficiently in a specific niche.
Tooth development has been studied in detail for several decades because it provides a useful model for instructive interactions occurring between dissimilar germ layers. These epithelial-mesenchymal interactions are responsible for the majority of vertebrate organogenesis, including hair, pancreas, mammary gland, salivary gland, thymus, vibrissae, and others. We will not include a detailed analysis of such interactions in this review except where they relate to control of amelogenin gene expression. The reader is directed to several excellent reviews that have recently appeared (Weiss et al., 1994; Thesleff et al., 1995; Zeichner-David et al., 1995; Maas and Bei, 1997). We are cognizant of several exceptional treatments of the field of biomimetics, biomineralization and enamel formation over the past several years and readers are directed to these scholarly works for alternative views of enamel formation (Fearnhead, 1989; Lowenstam and Weiner, 1989;
This chapter discusses the risks of and interventions for selected health behaviors during pregnancy and addresses the following questions:
What are health behavior risks and interventions?
What does the effectiveness literature about health behavior interventions during pregnancy indicate?
What gaps in the current literature should be addressed in future research?
What are the implications of these findings for policy makers, health managers, and health providers?
More specifically, this chapter focuses on the effectiveness of particular interventions in modifying health behaviors within certain sub-populations at increased risk of poor outcomes.
Summary of behavioral change theories
Behavioral change interventions, either explicitly or implicitly, incorporate a theoretical basis for understanding behavior – why individuals act in a specific manner. The field of behavioral sciences offers those interested in developing effective interventions (e.g., clinicians and policy planners) a clearer understanding of what individuals require in order to change undesirable behaviors or to maintain desirable ones (Fishbein and Guinan, 1996).
Behavioral science theory and research suggests that the most effective interventions are those aimed at a specific behavior (Fishbein and Guinan, 1996). Behaviors have unique determinants, and thus require different interventions for change to occur. Identifying the behavior that one wishes to change may well be the most difficult part of developing an intervention. Many interventions are mistakenly directed at increasing the probability that an individual will reach a specific goal or engage in a category of behaviors, rather than increasing the probability that one will engage in a specific behavior.
The purpose of this study was to assess the value of lignocaine biotransformation into monoethylglycinexylidide (MEGX) and conventional liver function tests in the early post-operative period as an indicator of graft function and as a diagnostic tool for complications after hepatic transplantation. Monoethylglycinexylidide formation, plasma bilirubin, aspartate aminotransferase (ASAT), alanine amino- transferase (ALAT), factor V index (FVI) and prothrombin time index (PTI) were measured in 71 patients undergoing 80 liver transplantations respectively at 12 (T1), 24 (T2), 48 (T3) and 72 h (T4) after liver graft revascularization. Patients were divided into two group according to the post-operative outcome. Patients with favourable outcome (n = 59) had significantly higher monoethylglycinexylidide synthesis, higher factor V index and prothrombin time index plasma concentrations, lower bilirubin, ASAT and ALAT plasma concentration (P < 0.0001 at T2 and T3) than those with complicated time course (n = 21). Monoethylglycinexylidide synthesis was the best discriminant of a favourable outcome, whereas bilirubin and ALAT concentrations were associated with complications (bilirubin for primary non function [PNF], ALAT for acute rejection). Thus, the combination of parameters at T2 was a very efficient predictor of primary non function, acute rejection and an uncomplicated time course.