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The objective of the present study was to evaluate the growth and tolerance in healthy, term infants consuming a synbiotic formula with daily weight gain as the primary outcome. In a randomised, controlled, double-blind, multicentre, intervention study infants were assigned to an extensively hydrolysed formula containing a specific combination of Bifidobacterium breve M-16V and a prebiotic mixture (short-chain galacto-oligosaccharides and long-chain fructo-oligosaccharides in a 9:1 ratio; scGOS/lcFOS; synbiotic group), or the same formula without this synbiotic concept for 13 weeks (control group). Anthropometry, formula intake, tolerance, stool characteristics, blood parameters, faecal microbiota and metabolic faecal profile were assessed. Medically confirmed adverse events were recorded throughout the study. Equivalence in daily weight gain was demonstrated for the intention-to-treat (ITT) population (n 211). In the per-protocol (PP) population (n 102), the 90 % CI of the difference in daily weight gain slightly crossed the lower equivalence margin. During the intervention period, the mean weight-for-age and length-for-age values were close to the median of the WHO growth standards in both groups, indicating adequate growth. The number of adverse events was not different between both groups. No relevant differences were observed in blood parameters indicative for liver and renal function. At 13 weeks, an increased percentage of faecal bifidobacteria (60 v. 48 %) and a reduced percentage of Clostridium lituseburense/C. histolyticum (0·2 v. 2·6 %) were observed in the synbiotic group (n 19) compared with the control group (n 27). In conclusion, this study demonstrates that an extensively hydrolysed formula with B. breve M-16V and the prebiotic mixture scGOS/lcFOS (9:1) supports an adequate infant growth.
Idiopathic intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) is a result of impaired placental nutrient supply. Newborns with IUGR exhibiting postnatal catch-up growth are of higher risk for cardiovascular and metabolic co-morbidities in adult life. Mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) was recently shown to function as a placental nutrient sensor. Thus, we determined possible correlations of members of the placental mTOR signaling cascade with auxologic parameters of postnatal growth. The protein expression and activity of mTOR-pathway signaling components, Akt, AMP-activated protein kinase α, mTOR, p70S6kinase1 and insulin receptor substrate-1 were analysed via western blotting in IUGR v. matched appropriate-for-gestational age (AGA) placentas. Moreover, mTOR was immunohistochemically stained in placental sections. Data from western blot analyses were correlated with retrospective auxological follow-up data at 1 year of age. We found significant catch-up growth in the 1st year of life in the IUGR group. MTOR and its activated form are immunohistochemically detected in multiple placental compartments. We identified correlations of placental mTOR-pathway signaling components to auxological data at birth and at 1 year of life in IUGR. Analysis of the protein expression and phosphorylation level of mTOR-pathway components in IUGR and AGA placentas postpartum, however, did not reveal pathognomonic changes. Our findings suggest that the level of activated mTOR correlates with early catch-up growth following IUGR. However, the complexity of signals converging at the mTOR nexus and its cellular distribution pattern seem to limit its potential as biomarker in this setting.
Avian trichomonosis, caused by the flagellated protozoan Trichomonas gallinae, is a recently emerged infectious disease of British passerines. The aetiological agent, a clonal epidemic strain of the parasite, has caused unprecedented finch mortality and population-level declines in Britain and has since spread to continental Europe. To better understand the potential origin of this epidemic and to further investigate its host range, T. gallinae DNA extracts were collected from parasite culture and tissue samples from a range of avian species in Britain. Sequence typing at the ITS1/5.8S rRNA/ITS2 region resolved three distinct ITS region types circulating in free-ranging British birds. Subtyping by sequence analyses at the Fe-hydrogenase gene demonstrated further strain variation within these ITS region types. The UK finch epidemic strain was preponderant amongst columbids sampled, however, wide strain diversity was encountered in isolates from a relatively small number of pigeons, suggesting further strains present in columbid populations across the UK are yet to be identified. Fe-hydrogenase gene sequence data in isolates from birds of prey with disease were predominantly identical to the UK finch epidemic strain, demonstrating its presence as a virulent strain in UK birds of prey since at least 2009.
Due to the extraordinary beam characteristics of the new PETRA III synchrotron, i.e., the high brilliance, the extremely low emittance of 1 nm rad, and the high fraction of coherent photons even in the hard X-ray range, the imaging beamline (IBL) at PETRA III will provide state of the art imaging and tomography capabilities with resolution well into the nanometer range. Novel applications of tomographic techniques allow for high speed in situ measurements as well as highest spatial and density resolutions. Additionally, the highly coherent beam enables the application of phase contrast methods in an exceptional way. Since the focus is on the energy range between 5 and 50 keV, the IBL will among others be ideally suited for microtomography and nanotomography on small engineering materials science samples as well as for studying soft matter, bones, medical implants, and biomatter.
Selective breeding of dogs has culminated in a large number of modern breeds distinctive in terms of size, shape and behaviour. Inadvertently, a range of breed-specific genetic disorders have become fixed in some pure-bred populations. Several inherited conditions confer chronic metabolic defects that are influenced strongly by diet, but it is likely that many less obvious breed-specific differences in physiology exist. Using Labrador retrievers and miniature Schnauzers maintained in a simulated domestic setting on a controlled diet, an experimental design was validated in relation to husbandry, sampling and sample processing for metabolomics. Metabolite fingerprints were generated from ‘spot’ urine samples using flow injection electrospray MS (FIE-MS). With class based on breed, urine chemical fingerprints were modelled using Random Forest (a supervised data classification technique), and metabolite features (m/z) explanatory of breed-specific differences were putatively annotated using the ARMeC database (http://www.armec.org). GC-MS profiling to confirm FIE-MS predictions indicated major breed-specific differences centred on the metabolism of diet-related polyphenols. Metabolism of further diet components, including potentially prebiotic oligosaccharides, animal-derived fats and glycerol, appeared significantly different between the two breeds. Analysis of the urinary metabolome of young male dogs representative of a wider range of breeds from animals maintained under domestic conditions on unknown diets provided preliminary evidence that many breeds may indeed have distinctive metabolic differences, with significant differences particularly apparent in comparisons between large and smaller breeds.
The nonlinear behaviour of unstable drift waves in magnetized plasmas is analysed analytically. Most attention is paid to low-frequency waves created in electron density and temperature gradients of opposite sign. This situation is typically encountered in radiofrequency-produced discharges. The model developed explains nonlinear features such as mode competition, amplitude saturation and magnetic field hysteresis, which are observed experimentally.
Low-frequency density and temperature oscillations (ω « νj, ωcj, where νj is the collision frequency with neutrals and ωcj is the cyclotron frequency; j = i, e) observed in magnetized radiofrequency-produced plasmas with electron density and temperature gradients across the magnetic field are analysed using a local two-fluid model. This model incorporates the electron energy equation. The resulting dispersion relation permits study of the parameter dependence of the complex angular wave frequency. Instability is found in the case where the election density and temperature gradients have opposite signs. This instability is classified as a low-frequency drift wave, and the criteria for its onset are obtained.
The objective of this case-control study was to identify the main risk factors for community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) in a German adult population. A self-administered questionnaire was given to CAP cases provided by the German competence network CAPNETZ and population-based, randomly selected controls (sex- and age-matched). Multivariate analysis showed that in addition to known risk factors such as previous CAP [odds ratio (OR) 1·6, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1·3–2·1], more than one respiratory infection during the previous year (OR 3·6, 95% CI 2·9–4·5), chronic pulmonary diseases (OR 2·3, 95% CI 1·7–3·0), number of comorbidities (OR 1·6, 95% CI 1·4–1·9), and number of children in the household (2 children: OR 2·2, 95% CI 1·5–3·4; ⩾3 children: OR 3·2, 95% CI 1·5–7·0) were independent risk factors for CAP. This was pronounced in particular in people aged ⩽65 years. The most likely explanation for this finding is higher exposure to infectious agents.
Toxic anterior segment syndrome (TASS), a complication of cataract surgery, is a sterile inflammation of the anterior chamber of the eye. An outbreak of TASS was recognized at an outpatient surgical center and its affiliated hospital in December 2002.
Medical records of patients who underwent cataract surgery during the outbreak were reviewed, and surgical team members who participated in the operations were interviewed. Potential causes of TASS were identified and eliminated. Feedwater from autoclave steam generators and steam condensates were analyzed by use of spectroscopy and ion chromatography.
During the outbreak, 8 (38%) of 21 cataract operations were complicated by TASS, compared with 2 (0.07%) of 2,713 operations performed from January 1996 through November 2002. Results of an initial investigation suggested that cataract surgical equipment may have been contaminated by suboptimal equipment reprocessing or as a result of personnel changes. The frequency of TASS decreased (1 of 44 cataract operations) after reassignment of personnel and revision of equipment reprocessing procedures. Further investigation identified the presence of impurities (eg, sulfates, copper, zinc, nickel, and silica) in autoclave steam moisture, which was attributed to improper maintenance of the autoclave steam generator in the outpatient surgical center. When impurities in autoclave steam moisture were eliminated, no cases of TASS were observed after more than 1,000 cataract operations.
Suboptimal reprocessing of cataract surgical equipment may evolve over time in busy, multidisciplinary surgical centers. Clinically significant contamination of surgical equipment may result from inappropriate maintenance of steam sterilization systems. Standardization of protocols for reprocessing of cataract surgical equipment may prevent outbreaks of TASS and may be of assistance during outbreak investigations.
Trinidad has a long history of investigation of fossil foraminifera. Following the classical ‘Report on the geology of Trinidad’ by Wall & Sawkins (1860) who drew attention to the presence of fossils ‘which might render important services to geological science’, it was Guppy (1863,1873) who first pointed out the presence of Tertiary foraminifera in Trinidad. He was also the first to illustrate some of them in 1894.
Applications of benthic foraminifera to stratigraphy were initiated about 1917 by W. F. Penny and P. W. Jarvis at the demand of Trinidad's expanding oil industry. In 1929 Cushman & Jarvis published a number of new benthic and planktic species from the Tertiary of Trinidad while, shortly before, Nuttall (1928) published a more comprehensive study on Oligo-Miocene benthic foraminifera from the Napa-rima region in southern Trinidad. This was also the first study on Trinidad foraminifera where the distribution of the species comprising a total of 144 taxa was plotted on a chart.
Following these pioneer studies which demonstrated the usefulness of the benthic species (the very frequent planktic forms were at the time almost completely ignored) to solve stratigraphic problems, oil companies began to establish their own micropaleon-tological laboratories. This increased the level of activity, and the initiative of some dedicated company paleontologists resulted in a number of detailed predominantly systematic studies on the Tertiary foraminifera, again still concentrating on benthic forms. Publications include those by Cushman & Stainforth (1945) and Cushman & Renz (1946, I947a,b, 1948) which span the interval Paleocene to Middle Miocene.
Bartenstein, Bettenstaedt & Bolli and Bartenstein & Bolli described and illustrated in five papers (1957-1986) the benthic and some planktic foraminifera from the Early Cretaceous Barremian to Early Albian of Trinidad. They distinguished 78 benthic genera, 185 species and subspecies of which 13 were described as new. The idea of these joint publications with Bartenstein and Bettenstaedt dates back to a suggestion by Bolli (1950) which was guided by the following considerations:
Compared with those from western Europe, where Early Cretaceous foraminifera are well developed and can be studied in successive sedimentary sequences including boreholes, those from the Americas were at the time less well known. The study of the European forms began in the nineteenth century with authors such as Roemer, Reuss, Berthelin and Chapman. These early studies were supplemented in the Northwest German Early Cretaceous from 1932 to 1942 by the more stratigraphically orientated investigations of Eichenberg, Hecht and Wicher. This period was followed by modern revisions by authors such as Albers, Bartenstein, Bettenstaedt and Brand.
In their publication ‘Stratigraphic correlation of Upper Cretaceous and Lower Cretaceous in the Tethys and Boreal by the aid of microfossils (Germany)’ Bettenstaedt & Wicher (1955) for the first time pointed out the worldwide occurrence of numerous Cretaceous benthic foraminifera with apparently the same stratigraphic distribution as in the boreal and tethyan realms. This was based on a comparison of the North German faunas with those of other European countries, Israel, Egypt, Morocco, USA, Mexico and Trinidad.
To avoid repetitions in the treatment of the numerous taxa which are identical in the three areas covering Trinidad, Venezuela (Falcon) and Barbados, the systematics of all chosen late Early Eocene to Middle Miocene taxa are combined in a single chapter. Their ranges and illustrations are however attached to the individual parts: Trinidad (Figs. 50–52, 53–64), Falcon (Figs. 73–75, 76–81) and Barbados (Figs. 86, 87–89).
The selected late Early Eocene to Middle Miocene benthic foraminifera included here were described and illustrated from Trinidad by Cushman & Renz (19476,1948) and Cushman & Stainforth (1945), from Falcon by Cushman & Renz (1941), Renz (1948), Blow (1959), Diaz de Gamero (1977a) and from Barbados by Beckmann (1953), Saunders et al.(1984) and Wood et al.(1985). The incorporation in the present book of all the taxa published by these authors from the three areas would have grown beyond the limits set. A selection similar to that for the Barremian to Early Albian of Trinidad had therefore to be made.
Instead of randomly choosing taxa it was decided rather to concentrate on certain characteristic genera represented in each area, many of them of stratigraphic significance, and only in second place to include taxa from additional genera.