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Considering the impact of coastal dynamics on the radiocarbon (14C) marine reservoir effect (MRE), upwelling has the potential of enhancing marine influence, usually 14C depleted. Freshwater input can contribute either to increased reservoir offsets, when dead carbon from rock weathering is available, but also towards an atmospheric 14C signal, when the presence of terrestrial organic matter from catchment prevails. An overview of the MRE studies based on shellmounds on the coast of Rio de Janeiro reveals a pattern of negative local corrections for Saquarema and Rio das Ostras but positive values for Cabo Frio island, suggesting the presence of cold upwelling waters in Cabo Frio at 1.6–1.2 cal kBP. New results for a shellmound on the Ilha Grande island, in the western portion of the Rio de Janeiro coast, revealed a negative value at about 3 ka. We discuss distribution of MRE values and temporal variability in the region and their relation to ocean dynamics, continental input and the choice of marine organisms used for ∆R determination. A comparison of local reservoir offsets for the Saquarema region obtained from fish otolith and mollusk shells revealed similar ΔR distributions, showing that both materials can be equally used.
Kang and Liu [‘On supersolvability of factorized finite groups’, Bull. Math. Sci.3 (2013), 205–210] investigate the structure of finite groups that are products of two supersoluble groups. The goal of this note is to give a correct proof of their main theorem.
Among other zooarchaeological remains, terrestrial snails’ shells from the Thaumastus and Megalobulimus genera are found in some Brazilian shellmounds, presenting a potential substitute for charcoal in radiocarbon dating analyses, as reliable representatives of the atmospheric carbon isotopic ratio. In this paper, we present statistically similar results of both charcoal and land snails samples from the same archaeological contexts in three settlements on the coast of Rio de Janeiro. The Manitiba I shellmound results range from 4.2 to 3.7 ka cal BP (95.4%), contemporary with the Saquarema shellmound, occupied during the period from 4.3 to 3.6 ka cal BP (95.4%). For the Usiminas shellmound, two groups of samples revealed different periods of time for two occupational layers from 2.3 to 2.1 ka cal BP (95.4%) and from 1.6 and 1.3 ka cal BP (95.4%). A model constraining each group of samples to within a single phase has a general agreement of 97% with only two outliers out of 22 dates, yielding minimum individual agreement of 74% and 7% posterior outlier probability for Saquarema shells. These are good examples of sites in which the occupation chronology can be successfully obtained by the radiocarbon dating of land snails.
The aim of the study was to determine whether routine probiotic supplementation (RPS) with Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG (LGG) or Lactobacillus acidophilus +Lactobacillus bifidum is associated with reduced risk of necrotising enterocolitis (NEC)≥Stage II in preterm neonates born at ≤32 weeks’ gestation. We conducted a retrospective cohort study on the effect of probiotic supplementation in very low birth weight infants in our neonatal unit by comparing two periods: before and after supplementation. The incidence of NEC≥Stage II, late-onset sepsis and all-cause mortality was compared for an equal period ‘before’ (Period I) and ‘after’ (Period II) RPS with LGG or L. acidophillus+L. bifidum. Multivariate logistic regression analysis was conducted to adjust for relevant confounders. The study population was composed of 261 neonates (Period I v. II: 134 v. 127) with comparable gestation duration and birth weights. In <32 weeks, we observed a significant reduction in NEC≥Stage II (11·3 v. 4·8 %), late-onset sepsis (16 v. 10·5 %) and mortality (19·4 v. 2·3 %). The benefits in neonates aged ≤27 weeks did not reach statistical significance. RPS with LGG or L. acidophillus+L. bifidum is associated with a reduced risk of NEC≥Stage II, late-onset sepsis and mortality in preterm neonates born at ≤32 weeks’ gestation.
The regional component (∆R) of the marine reservoir effect (MRE), which is crucial for the accurate calibration of radiocarbon ages of marine-influenced samples, was determined for the Cuban northwestern coast. Fifteen different locations were studied by 14C dating of pre-bomb known-age marine shells specimens of bivalves and gastropods from the Felipe Poey Museum collection. Accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) 14C measurements were performed at the Radiocarbon Laboratory of the Universidade Federal Fluminense (LAC-UFF) and mean ΔR values were estimated. The distribution of results indicates ∆R values from −46±38 to 140±52 14C yr and a possible pattern related to the position along the coast and ocean dynamics. We present both mean values for each region and a general ∆R of 28±13 14C yr for the northwestern coast of Cuba.
A total of 16 pure-bred Iberian (IB) sows, all of them suckling six piglets, were used, eight of them in each of the two consecutive trials (1 and 2). Daily milk yield and composition were determined weekly over a 34-day lactation period. Within each litter, one piglet at birth and four piglets on day 35 of life were slaughtered. Milk intake per piglet tended to be greater in trial 2 (832 v. 893 g/day; P=0.066), but piglets grew at 168±3.3 g/day, irrespective of the trial. In the IB sow milk, the linoleic (LA) : linolenic (LNA) acid ratio averaged 14.6 and 15.2 in trial 1 and trial 2, respectively. A fivefold increase in piglet body fat content was observed over lactation (P<0.001). Most of this fat (81.4%) was present in the carcass. After 34 days of lactation, whole-body relative content of palmitic, palmitoleic, stearic and oleic acids were very close to those in the milk consumed, suggesting direct deposition. Daily deposition of LA derivatives and of LNA and its derivatives was found to be extremely low (<0.02 g, on average). Moreover, some of the arachidonic acid (ARA) in tissues of the IB piglet at birth disappeared throughout the lactating period. An overall fractional deposition for total fatty acids (FA) was 0.409. Fractional oxidation (disappearance) rates were 0.939 and 0.926 for n-6 and n-3 polyunsaturated FA. The overall rate of disappearance for the major non-essential FA (myristic, palmitic, palmitoleic, stearic and oleic acids), estimated as 1−the overall fractional deposition rate, was 0.546. It is concluded that the high degree of FA unsaturation, high oxidation rate of LA and LNA, and poor synthesis of ARA from LA and of docosahexaenoic acid from LNA found in the suckling piglet might increase the energy cost of whole-body fat accretion, a contributor to the observed low efficiency of use of milk energy for growth.
The main objective of this research was to utilize pollen monitoring methodology to predict olive yields in three Mediterranean olive cultivation areas (Spain, Italy and Tunisia) and their relationships with the olive oil price dynamics. Moreover, olive yield and olive oil production compared with olive oil price trends in the last two decades was evaluated. The statistical analyses confirmed that biological parameters such as the pollen emission, the pollen season start (Pss), the full flowering (Ff) date or the pollen season length (Psl) showed positive correlation values with productive parameters, especially the Pollen Index (Pi). However, the difficulty to define clear relationships with oil price for optimizing the marketing strategies can be due to the olive sector European policy and to the complex international olive oil market situation. The occurrence of unharvested trees was increased and the reduction in agricultural operations as well as non-harvesting could become more widespread above all in traditional extensive systems.
Since the beginning of the Holocene, hunter-gatherers have occupied the central-south Brazilian coast, as it was a very productive estuarine environment. Living as fishers and mollusk gatherers, they built prehistoric shellmounds, known as sambaqui, up to 30 m high, which can still be found today from the Espírito Santo (21°S) to Rio Grande do Sul (32°S) states, constituting an important testimony of paleodiversity and Brazilian prehistory. The chronology of the Sambaqui da Tarioba, situated in Rio das Ostras, Rio de Janeiro, is discussed herein. Selected well-preserved shells of Iphigenia brasiliana and charcoal from fireplaces in sequential layers were used for radiocarbon dating analysis. Based on a statistical model developed using OxCal software, the results indicate that the settlement occupation begun most probably around 3800 cal BP and lasted for up to 5 centuries.
Piglet body composition at weaning could be a determinant for pig’s viability and may be influenced by factors such as the nutritional management followed during suckling. An experiment was conducted to study whether intermittent suckling (IS) affects body composition at weaning and nutrient and energy retention during a 34-day lactation period in Iberian piglets. Litters were subjected to conventional suckling (CS) or IS (n=10 litters of six piglets per treatment) in two trials. All piglets had ad libitum access to creep feed from day 15 onwards. In IS, piglets were progressively separated from the sow for 6, 8 and 10 h daily during the last week of lactation, whereas in CS piglets had continuous access to their dams. Creep feed intake in litters and BW development of individual piglets were measured throughout the 34-day lactation. Within each litter, both at birth and at weaning (day 35), one piglet was used to assess nutrient retention and body composition by the comparative slaughter approach. During days 29 to 35 of the experiment, daily creep feed intake was greater in IS piglets (IS 124, CS 67 g/piglet, P=0.040), and average daily gain differed significantly between groups (IS 190, CS 150 g/day, P=0.010). BW at weaning was higher in the IS than in the CS piglets (IS 8.19, CS 7.48 kg, P=0.011). Empty-body fat and energy content at weaning were higher in the IS compared with CS litters, as well as fat content in the carcass (P=0.04). The IS treatment did not affect empty-body protein deposition, but significantly increased daily retention of fat, energy, ash and calcium, compared with CS litters (P<0.05). Thus, IS in Iberian piglets seems to enhance feed intake, growth rate and retention of some body components, which may contribute to a higher body fat content at weaning and facilitate the weaning process.
To evaluate the association between waist-to-height ratio (WHtR) and specific biomarkers of inflammation, CVD risk and endothelial dysfunction in prepubertal obese children.
Prospective, multicentre case–control study matched by age and sex.
Children were recruited between May 2007 and May 2010 from primary-care centres and schools in three cities in Spain (Cordoba, Santiago de Compostela and Zaragoza).
Four hundred and forty-six (223 normal weight and 223 obese) Caucasian prepubertal children aged 6–12 years.
WHtR was higher in the obese than in the normal-weight children. Blood pressure, waist circumference, weight, height, insulin, plasma lipids, leptin, resistin, abnormal neutrophil and monocyte counts, C-reactive protein, IL-6, IL-8, TNF-α, myeloperoxidase, soluble intercellular adhesion molecule-1, selectin and plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 levels were higher in the obese than in the normal-weight group. Adiponectin and HDL-cholesterol were lower and glucose and metalloproteinase-9 showed no differences. Resistin, TNF-α and active plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 were associated with WHtR, a sensitive indicator of central obesity.
Our results lead to the hypothesis that changes in biomarker levels of insulin resistance, inflammation and CVD risk before puberty might induce metabolic consequences of obesity in obese children before reaching adulthood.
Changes in paraoxonase 1 (PON1) activities have been observed in a variety of diseases involving oxidative stress, such as CVD. However, its role in obesity has not been fully established. In the present study, we aimed (1) to genotype sixteen PON1 SNP, (2) to measure serum PON1 activities and (3) to correlate these findings with the incidence of childhood obesity and related traits. We conducted a case–control study of 189 normal-weight and 179 obese prepubertal children, and we measured four different PON1 activities: lactonase; paraoxonase; arylesterase; diazoxonase. Although none of these activities was significantly different between the obese and normal-weight children, lactonase activity was found to be positively correlated with HDL-cholesterol and ApoA1 levels and negatively correlated with myeloperoxidase and fatty acid-binding protein 4 levels. Among the sixteen genotyped PON1 SNP, only the intronic SNP rs854566 exhibited a significant association with obesity (OR 0·61, 95 % CI 0·41, 0·91; P= 0·016). This genetic variant was also associated with increased diazoxonase, lactonase and arylesterase activities and decreased paraoxonase activity. Other genetic variants exhibited different association patterns with serum activities based on their location within the PON1 gene, and SNP that were located within the promoter were strongly associated with lactonase, arylesterase and diazoxonase activities. The functional variant Q192R exhibited the greatest effect on paraoxonase activity (P= 5·88 × 10− 42). In conclusion, SNP rs854566 was negatively associated with childhood obesity and with increased serum PON1 activities in prepubertal children. We determined that lactonase is a reliable indicator of PON1 activities and should be included in future studies of PON1 function.
We present extensive pseudopotential density functional theory calculations dedicated to analyze the stability, electronic properties, and structural isomerism in Cu6 clusters. We consider structures of different symmetries and charge states. Our total energy calculations reveal a strong competition between two- and three-dimensional atomic arrays, the later being mostly energetically preferred for the anionic structures. The bond lengths and electronic spectra strongly depend on the local atomic environment, a result that is expected to strongly influence the catalytic activity of our clusters. Using the nudged elastic band method we analyze the interconversion processes between different Cu6 isomers. Complex atomic relaxations are obtained when we study the transition between different cluster structures; however relatively small energy barriers of approximately 0.3 eV accompany the atomic displacements. Interestingly, we obtain that by considering positively charged Cu6+ systems we reduce further the energy barriers opposing the interconversion process. The previous results could imply that, under a range of experimental conditions, it should be possible to observe different Cu6cluster structures in varying proportions.
Inflammation is part of the normal host response to infection and injury. Eicosanoids, cytokines, chemokines, adhesion molecules and other inflammatory molecules are frequently produced during this process. Numerous studies in humans have documented the inflammation-limiting properties of omega-3 fatty acids, but only a few have been randomised clinical trials. The aim of this study was to perform a systematic search of randomised clinical trials on omega-3 fatty acids and inflammatory biomarkers in all subjects including healthy and ill persons up to February 2011 using PubMed and LILACS databases, defined by a specific equation using MeSH terms and limited to randomised clinical trials; there was no any a priori decision to include some diseases and not others. The quality of each publication was validated by using the JADAD scale and the CONSORT checklist. Inflammatory biomarkers were considered as primary outcomes. Twenty-six publications of the last 10 years were selected. Studies included healthy subjects and patients with cardiovascular disease and other chronic and acute diseases; all reported the number of subjects, type of study, type and doses of omega-3 fatty acids, main outcomes and major inflammatory biomarkers. Dietary omega-3 fatty acids are associated with plasma biomarker levels, reflecting lower levels of inflammation and endothelial activation in cardiovascular disease and other chronic and acute diseases, including chronic renal disease, sepsis and acute pancreatitis. However, further research is required before definitive recommendations can be made about the routine use of omega-3 fatty acids in critically ill patients or with neurodegenerative or chronic renal disease.
To determine possible mechanisms of action that might explain the nutrient partitioning effect of betaine and conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) in Iberian pigs and to address potential adverse effects, twenty gilts were restrictively fed from 20 to 50 kg BW Control, 0.5% betaine, 1% CLA or 0.5% betaine + 1% CLA diets. Serum hormones and metabolites profile were determined at 30 kg BW and an oral glucose test was performed before slaughter. Pigs were slaughtered at 50 kg BW and livers were obtained for chemical and histological analysis. Decreased serum urea in pigs fed betaine and betaine + CLA diets (11%; P = 0.0001) indicated a more efficient N utilization. The increase in serum triacylglycerol (58% and 28%, respectively; P = 0.0098) indicated that CLA and betaine + CLA could have reduced adipose tissue triacylglycerol synthesis from preformed fatty acids. Serum glucose, low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and non-esterified fatty acids were unaffected. CLA and betaine + CLA altered serum lipids profile, although liver of pigs fed CLA diet presented no histopathological changes and triglyceride content was not different from Control pigs. Compared with controls, serum growth hormone decreased (20% to 23%; P = 0.0209) for all treatments. Although serum insulin increased in CLA, and especially in betaine + CLA pigs (28% and 83%; P = 0.0001), indices of insulin resistance were unaffected. In conclusion, CLA, and especially betaine + CLA, induced changes in biochemical parameters and hormones that may partially explain a nutrient partitioning effect in young pigs. Nevertheless, they exhibited weak, although detrimental, effects on blood lipids. Moreover, although livers were chemically and histologically normal, pigs fed CLA diet challenged with a glucose load had higher serum glucose than controls.
Conjugated linoleic acids (CLAs) are geometric and positional isomers of linoleic acid (LA) that promote growth, alter glucose metabolism and decrease body fat in growing animals, although the mechanisms are poorly understood. A study was conducted to elucidate the effects of CLA on glucose metabolism, triglyceride (TG) synthesis and IGF-1 synthesis in primary culture of porcine hepatocytes. In addition, hormonal regulation of TG and IGF-1 synthesis was addressed. Hepatocytes were isolated from piglets (n = 5, 16.0 ± 1.98 kg average body weight) by collagenase perfusion and seeded into collagen-coated T-25 flasks. Hepatocytes were cultured in William's E containing dexamethasone (10−8 and 10−7 M), insulin (10 and 100 ng/ml), glucagon (0 and 100 ng/ml) and CLA (1 : 1 mixture of cis-9, trans-11 and trans-10, cis-12 CLA, 0.05 and 0.10 mM) or LA (0.05 and 0.10 mM). Addition of CLA decreased gluconeogenesis (P < 0.05), whereas glycogen synthesis and degradation, TG synthesis and IGF-1 synthesis were not affected compared with LA. Increased concentration of fatty acids in the media decreased IGF-1 production (P < 0.001) and glycogen synthesis (P < 0.01), and increased gluconeogenesis (P < 0.001) and TG synthesis (P < 0.001). IGF-1 synthesis increased (P < 0.001) and TG synthesis decreased (P < 0.001) as dexamethasone concentration in the media rose. High insulin/glucagon increased TG synthesis. These results indicate that TG synthesis in porcine hepatocytes is hormonally regulated so that dexamethasone decreases and insulin/glucagon increases it. In addition, CLA decreases hepatic glucose production through decreased gluconeogenesis.
Sixteen purebred Iberian (IB) sows were used in two consecutive trials to determine the efficiency of conversion of sow's milk into piglet body weight (BW) gain and the relationship between milk protein and body protein retention and between milk energy yield and body energy retention in the nursing IB piglet. In each trial, four sows were selected in order to evaluate their milk production, litter growth and nutrient balance measurements, together with four additional sows for milk sampling. Litter size was equalized to six piglets. Daily milk yield (MY) was determined weekly by the weigh-suckle-weigh technique over a 34-day lactation period. Piglets were weighed individually at birth and then weekly from day 5 of lactation. Milk samples were collected on days 5, 12, 19, 26 and 34 post partum. The comparative slaughter procedure was used to determine piglet nutrient and energy retention. One piglet from each litter was slaughtered at birth and four on the morning of day 35. Total MY was on average 5.175 ± 0.157 kg/day. The average chemical composition (g/kg) of the milk was 179 ± 4 dry matter, 53.4 ± 1.0 CP, 58.5 ± 3.8 fat, 10.4 ± 0.3 ash and 56.9 ± 2.3 lactose. Milk gross energy (GE) was 4.626 ± 0.145 MJ/kg. Milk intake per piglet tended to increase in trial 2 (832 v. 893 g/day; P = 0.066). Piglet BW gain contained (g/kg) 172.1 ± 1.3 protein, 151.5 ± 3.5 fat, 41.4 ± 0.6 ash and 635 ± 3 water and 10.127 ± 0.126 MJ GE/kg. Throughout the 34-day nursing period, the piglets grew at an average rate of 168 ± 3 g/day. The ratio of daily piglet BW gain to daily MY was 0.195 ± 0.002 g/g and the gain per MJ milk GE intake was 41.9 ± 0.5 g/MJ. The overall efficiency of protein accretion (g CP gain/g CP milk intake) was low and declined in trial 2 (0.619 v. 0.571; P = 0.016). Nutrient and energy deposition between birth and weaning were 27.4 ± 0.5 g/day protein, 24.2 ± 0.8 g/day fat and 1615 ± 40 kJ/day energy. Piglet energy requirements for maintenance were 404 kJ metabolizable energy (ME)/kg BW0.75. ME was used for growth with a net efficiency of 0.584. These results suggest that poor efficiency in the use of sow's milk nutrients rather than a shortage in milk nutrient supply might explain the low growth rate of the suckling IB piglet.