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Four representatives of the genus Lecithaster and one representative of the genus Hysterolecithoides were found during investigation of the trematode fauna of fish species in Vietnamese, Japanese and eastern coastal waters of the Russian Far East. Based on morphometric data, adult trematodes from Vietnamese Strongylura strongylura and Russian Acanthogobius flavimanus were identified as Lecithaster confusus, trematodes from Vietnamese Hemirhamphus marginatus as L. sayori and from osmerid fishes as L. salmonis. Further, a single specimen of Lecithaster sp. and representatives of Hysterolecithoides epinepheli were found in Vietnamese Siganus fuscescens. Morphological and molecular data, including 18S ribosomal DNA (rDNA) V4 fragment, 28S rDNA D1-D3 fragment, internal transcribed spacers (ITS) and a mitochondrial COI gene fragment were analysed for Lecithaster spp. The results revealed that L. sayori and L. salmonis are not synonyms of L. stellatus and L. gibbosus, respectively, but that Hysterolecithoides frontilatus and H. guangdongensis are junior synonyms of H. epinepheli. The 28S-rDNA-based phylogenetic tree of Hemiuroidea showed a distinct position for the genus Lecithaster with internal differentiation into three subclades, including L. confusus, L. sayori and Lecithaster sp. within the first subclade, L. mugilis and L. sudzuhensis within the second subclade and L. salmonis and L. gibbosus within the third subclade. Bayesian phylogenetic reconstructions of Hemiuroidea showed four clades for members of Hemiuridae and Lecithasteridae. The first clade consisted of Hemiuridae representatives and the second clade represented the genus Lecithaster. The third clade included genera Aponurus and Lecithophyllum (Lecithasteridae) and the fourth clade combined members of lecithasterid Quadrifoliovariinae and Hysterolecithinae and hemiurid Opisthadeninae and Bunocotylidae with high statistical support.
We describe the investigation of two temporally coincident illness clusters involving salmonella and Staphylococcus aureus in two states. Cases were defined as gastrointestinal illness following two meal events. Investigators interviewed ill persons. Stool, food and environmental samples underwent pathogen testing. Alabama: Eighty cases were identified. Median time from meal to illness was 5·8 h. Salmonella Heidelberg was identified from 27 of 28 stool specimens tested, and coagulase-positive S. aureus was isolated from three of 16 ill persons. Environmental investigation indicated that food handling deficiencies occurred. Colorado: Seven cases were identified. Median time from meal to illness was 4·5 h. Five persons were hospitalised, four of whom were admitted to the intensive care unit. Salmonella Heidelberg was identified in six of seven stool specimens and coagulase-positive S. aureus in three of six tested. No single food item was implicated in either outbreak. These two outbreaks were linked to infection with Salmonella Heidelberg, but additional factors, such as dual aetiology that included S. aureus or the dose of salmonella ingested may have contributed to the short incubation periods and high illness severity. The outbreaks underscore the importance of measures to prevent foodborne illness through appropriate washing, handling, preparation and storage of food.
Introduction: Most ambulance communication officers receive minimal education on agonal breathing, often leading to unrecognized out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA). We sought to evaluate the impact of an educational program on cardiac arrest recognition, and on bystander CPR and survival rates. Methods: Ambulance communication officers in Ottawa, Canada received additional training on agonal breathing, while the control site (Windsor, Canada) did not. Sites were compared to their pre-study performance (before-after design), and to each other (concurrent control). Trained investigators used a piloted-standardized data collection tool when reviewing the recordings for all potential OHCA cases submitted. OHCA was confirmed using our local OHCA registry, and we requested 9-1-1 recordings for OHCA cases not initially suspected. Two independent investigators reviewed medical records for non-OHCA cases receiving telephone-assisted CPR in Ottawa. We present descriptive and chi-square statistics. Results: There were 988 confirmed and suspected OHCA in the “before” (540 Ottawa; 448 Windsor), and 1,076 in the “after” group (689 Ottawa; 387 Windsor). Characteristics of “after” group OHCA patients were: mean age (68.1 Ottawa, 68.2 Windsor); Male (68.5% Ottawa, 64.8% Windsor); witnessed (45.0% Ottawa, 41.9% Windsor); and initial rhythm VF/VT (Ottawa 28.9, Windsor 22.5%). Before-after comparisons were: for cardiac arrest recognition (from 65.4% to 71.9% in Ottawa p=0.03; from 70.9% to 74.1% in Windsor p=0.37); for bystander CPR rates (from 23.0% to 35.9% in Ottawa p=0.0001; from 28.2% to 39.4% in Windsor p=0.001); and for survival to hospital discharge (from 4.1% to 12.5% in Ottawa p=0.001; from 3.9% to 6.9% in Windsor p=0.03). “After” group comparisons between Ottawa and Windsor (control) were not statistically different, except survival (p=0.02). Agonal breathing was common (25.6% Ottawa, 22.4% Windsor) and present in 18.5% of missed cases (15.8% Ottawa, 22.2% Windsor p=0.27). In Ottawa, 31 patients not in OHCA received chest compressions resulting from telephone-assisted CPR instructions. None suffered injury or adverse effects. Conclusion: While all OHCA outcomes improved over time, the educational intervention significantly improved OHCA recognition in Ottawa, and appeared to mitigate the impact of agonal breathing.
Human salmonellosis linked to contact with live poultry is an increasing public health concern. In 2012, eight unrelated outbreaks of human salmonellosis linked to live poultry contact resulted in 517 illnesses. In July 2012, PulseNet, a national molecular surveillance network, reported a multistate cluster of a rare strain of Salmonella Braenderup infections which we investigated. We defined a case as infection with the outbreak strain, determined by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis, with illness onset from 25 July 2012–27 February 2013. Ill persons and mail-order hatchery (MOH) owners were interviewed using standardized questionnaires. Traceback and environmental investigations were conducted. We identified 48 cases in 24 states. Twenty-six (81%) of 32 ill persons reported live poultry contact in the week before illness; case-patients named 12 different MOHs from eight states. The investigation identified hatchery D as the ultimate poultry source. Sampling at hatchery D yielded the outbreak strain. Hatchery D improved sanitation procedures and pest control; subsequent sampling failed to yield Salmonella. This outbreak highlights the interconnectedness of humans, animals, and the environment and the importance of industry knowledge and involvement in solving complex outbreaks. Preventing these infections requires a ‘One Health’ approach that leverages expertise in human, animal, and environmental health.
Three-dimensional fluid-attenuated inversion recovery magnetic resonance imaging has been used to detect alterations in the composition of inner-ear fluid. This study investigated the association between hearing level and the signal intensity of pre- and post-contrast three-dimensional fluid-attenuated inversion recovery magnetic resonance imaging in patients with sudden-onset sensorineural hearing loss.
Three-dimensional fluid-attenuated inversion recovery magnetic resonance imaging was performed in 18 patients with sudden-onset sensorineural hearing loss: 12 patients with mild-to-moderate sensorineural hearing loss (baseline hearing levels of 60 dB or less) and 6 patients with severe-to-profound sensorineural hearing loss (baseline hearing levels of more than 60 dB).
High-intensity signals in the inner ear were observed in two of the six patients (33 per cent) with severe-to-profound sensorineural hearing loss, but not in those with mild-to-moderate sensorineural hearing loss (mid-p test, p = 0.049). These signals were observed on magnetic resonance imaging scans 6 or 18 days after sensorineural hearing loss onset.
The results indicate that three-dimensional fluid-attenuated inversion recovery magnetic resonance imaging is not a useful tool for detecting inner-ear abnormalities in patients with mild sensorineural hearing loss.
In Russia, both alveolar and cystic echinococcoses are endemic. This study aimed to identify the aetiological agents of the diseases and to investigate the distribution of each Echinococcus species in Russia. A total of 75 Echinococcus specimens were collected from 14 host species from 2010 to 2012. Based on the mitochondrial DNA sequences, they were identified as Echinococcus granulosus sensu stricto (s.s.), E. canadensis and E. multilocularis. E. granulosus s.s. was confirmed in the European Russia and the Altai region. Three genotypes, G6, G8 and G10 of E. canadensis were detected in Yakutia. G6 was also found in the Altai region. Four genotypes of E. multilocularis were confirmed; the Asian genotype in the western Siberia and the European Russia, the Mongolian genotype in an island of Baikal Lake and the Altai Republic, the European genotype from a captive monkey in Moscow Zoo and the North American genotype in Yakutia. The present distributional record will become a basis of public health to control echinococcoses in Russia. The rich genetic diversity demonstrates the importance of Russia in investigating the evolutionary history of the genus Echinococcus.
Bovine cysticercosis causing damage to the beef industry is closely linked to human taeniasis due to Taenia saginata. In African countries, Taenia spp. from wildlife are also involved as possible sources of infections in livestock. To identify the aetiological agents of bovine cysticercosis in Ethiopia, cysticerci were collected from 41 cattle slaughtered in the eastern and central areas during 2010–2012. A single cysticercus per animal was subjected to the polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based DNA sequencing of mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 gene, and the resultant sequence was compared with those of members of the genus Taenia. Although 38 out of 41 cysticerci (92.7%) were identified as T. saginata, three samples (7.3%) showed the hitherto unknown sequences of Taenia sp., which is distantly related to Taenia solium, Taenia arctos and Taenia ovis. Old literatures suggest it to be Taenia hyaenae, but morphological identification of species could not be completed by observing only the larval samples.
We have deposited porous ZnO films on aluminum-doped ZnO (ZnO/AZO) and fluorine-doped tin oxide (ZnO/FTO) transparent substrates, and annealed both in air at 500°C. X-ray diffraction measurements of the nanoporous ZnO films after heat treatment showed that, ZnO/AZO film exhibited a dominant (002) diffraction while the ZnO/FTO showed mixed diffraction peaks with the (100) and (101) being dominant. Dye-sensitized solar cells (DSC) based on the sensitization of the porous ZnO films on AZO and FTO substrates with an indoline dye were constructed. The photoaction spectrum, which is a measure of the degree of sunlight harvesting, was broad and higher in the ZnO/AZO DSC than that of the ZnO/FTO DSC. Conversion efficiency of 7.3 % was obtained for the ZnO/AZO DSC while 4.5 % was recorded for the ZnO/FTO. The superior photovoltaic performance of the ZnO/AZO DSC is attributed to better ZnO film orientation after thermal treatment and the higher sunlight harvesting.
A case of cystic echinococcosis (CE) in a domestic cat is described from Saint Petersburg, Russia. Ultrasonography showed numerous cysts with hyperechoic walls and anechoic contents within the cat's abdominal cavity. Molecular identification based on mitochondrial DNA genes indicated that the causative agent was Echinococcus granulosus sensu stricto (G1 strain). This is the first report of CE in a cat caused by E. granulosus sensu stricto with molecular confirmation.
This paper reports a transition in the fracture behavior of micron-sized single-crystal-silicon (SCS) film in an MEMS structure for various film thicknesses and ambient temperatures. The mean fracture toughness of 4-µm-thick SCS films was 1.28 MPa at room temperature (RT), and the value increased as the film thickness decreased, reaching 2.91 MPa for submicron-thick films. The fracture toughness of 4-µm-thick film did not change for ambient temperatures ranging from RT to 60ºC. However, it drastically increased at 70ºC and reached 2.60 MPa at 150ºC. Enhanced dislocation activity in the SCS crystal near the fracture surface was observed on 1-µm-thick film at RT and 4-µm-thick film at 80ºC by high-voltage electron microscopy. This change in dislocation activity seemed to correlated with the transition in fracture behavior.
We have investigated the effect of the background thermal motion on the knock-on ion production and the neutron energy spectrum in deuteron–triton (D–T) fusion plasma. Under the conditions of a typical tokamak D–T plasma, it turned out that the effect is not crucial. Accordingly, it was found that the knock-on ion source strength formulated previously by Ryutov, Helander and Lisak is valid for D–T fusion plasma. The finite temperature effect would become important in knock-on ion production in D–3He fusion plasma.
Increasing breeding success in the giant panda requires a better understanding of its complex reproductive biology. We know that the female is typically mono-oestrus during a breeding season which occurs from February to May (within and outside China). Behavioural and physiological changes associated with pro-oestrus and oestrus last one to two weeks, during which the female exhibits proceptive behaviours, such as scent marking, to advertise her sexual receptivity (Lindburg et al., 2001). During the peri-ovulatory interval, receptive behaviours (e.g. tail-up lordotic posture) climax with copulation generally occurring over a one- to three-day interval. Birthing occurs from June to October with a gestation of 85 to 185 days (Zhu et al., 2001). This unusually wide gestation span is due to the phenomenon of delayed implantation, a varied interval before the conceptus implants in the uterus and begins foetal development. The driving force behind implantation in this species is unknown. The giant panda also experiences pseudopregnancy, whereby the female exhibits behavioural, physiological and hormonal changes similar to pregnancy.
Behavioural and physiological cues associated with both pregnancy and pseudopregnancy include decreased appetite, nest-building and cradling behaviours, vulvar swelling and colouration, mammary gland enlargement and lethargy. Additionally, temporal and quantitative progesterone patterns (tracked by assessing urinary hormone by-products and progestins) are indistinguishable between pregnancy and pseudopregnancy. Therefore, no definitive test currently exists for identifying pregnant from pseudopregnant giant pandas.
The Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, multi-ethnic province in northwestern China, is one of the most important foci of human cystic echinococcosis (CE) in the world. Two Echinococcus granulosus genotypes (G1 and G6) are known to infect the intermediate hosts in this area but, to date, the source of the human infection remains unclear. The current study aimed to genetically analyse 67 hydatid cysts removed from 47 CE patients for which epidemiological, clinical and serological data were also recorded. Mitochondrial cox 1 gene sequencing suggested that the E. granulosus G1 genotype is the major source of infection (45/47 CE patients). Nevertheless, for the first time in China, 2 patients were found with hydatid cysts of the G6 genotype. In addition, 45 E. granulosus gravid tapeworms, isolated from 13 dogs, were genotyped. The majority of adult worms (42/45) exhibited the G1 genotype, whereas 3 adult tapeworms with the G6 genotype were found in one dog, that also harboured E. granulosus tapeworms of the G1 genotype. This sympatric occurrence of G1 and G6 genotypes of E. granulosus, not only in the same area but also in the same definitive host, raises the interesting question of putative genetic recombination between these E. granulosus genotypes.
Taxonomic revision by molecular phylogeny is needed to categorize members of the genus Echinococcus (Cestoda: Taeniidae). We have reconstructed the phylogenetic relationships of E. oligarthrus, E. vogeli, E. multilocularis, E. shiquicus, E. equinus, E. ortleppi, E. granulosus sensu stricto and 3 genotypes of E. granulosus sensu lato (G6, G7 and G8) from their complete mitochondrial genomes. Maximum likelihood and partitioned Bayesian analyses using concatenated data sets of nucleotide and amino acid sequences depicted phylogenetic trees with the same topology. The 3 E. granulosus genotypes corresponding to the camel, pig, and cervid strains were monophyletic, and their high level of genetic similarity supported taxonomic species unification of these genotypes into E. canadensis. Sister species relationships were confirmed between E. ortleppi and E. canadensis, and between E. multilocularis and E. shiquicus, regardless of the analytical approach employed. The basal positions of the phylogenetic tree were occupied by the neotropical endemic species, E. oligarthrus and E. vogeli, whose definitive hosts are derived from carnivores that immigrated from North America after the formation of the Panamanian land bridge. Host-parasite co-evolution comparisons suggest that the ancestral homeland of Echinococcus was North America or Asia, depending on whether the ancestral definitive hosts were canids or felids.
We determined the most probable atomistic structure of an ultra-low-k material (k≅ 2.5) by computer simulations. Among the candidate structures generated by a molecular-dynamics calculation, the most probable one that reproduces the observed properties was selected using a first-principles density-functional-theory calculation. The candidate structures consisted of Si-O-Si network with some silicon atoms, each of which had a CH3 group or a hydrogen atom bonded. The structure with CH3 groups but no hydrogen atom reproduced the experimental properties best. This structure was then used to investigate the behaviors of the material irradiated with ultraviolet light.
Separation by implemented oxygen (SIMOX)(111) substrates have been formed by oxygen-ion (16O+) implantation into Si(111), showing that a so-called “dose-window” at 16O+-implantation into Si differs from Si(100) to Si(111). In SIMOX(100), an oxygen dose of 4 × 1017/cm2 into Si(100) is widely recognized as the dose-window when the acceleration energy is 180 keV. For the first time, our work shows that an oxygen dose of 5 × 1017/cm2 into Si(111) is the dose-window for the formation of SIMOX(111) substrates when the acceleration energy is 180 keV. The difference between dose-windows is caused by anisotropy of the crystal orientation during growth of the faceted buried SiO2. We also numerically analyzed the data at different oxidation velocities for each facet of the polyhedral SiO2 islands. Numerical analysis results show good agreement with the experimental data.
The mouse bile duct tapeworm Hymenolepis microstoma requires beetles as the obligatory intermediate host. However, when congenitally athymic NMRI-nu mice were infected with the mature tapeworm and allowed to eat their own faeces with tapeworm eggs, the oncospheres penetrated the intestinal tissue and developed to cysticercoids. After excysting, growth to adult worms occurs in the lumen of the small intestine and bile duct. Furthermore, the same happened when NMRI-nu mice, non-obese diabetic severe combined immunodeficiency (NOD/Shi-scid) mice and NOD/Shi-scid, IL-2 Rγnull (NOG) mice were orally inoculated with shell-free eggs of this parasite. Differences between the cysticercoids of H. microstoma and H. nana developed in the mouse intestinal tissues were: (i) the time course for the development of fully matured cysticercoids of H. microstoma in mice was about 11 days but only 4 days for H. nana; and (ii) cysticercoids of H. microstoma developed in mice had a tail while those of H. nana had none.
Serology (ELISA and immunoblot) using native glycoproteins, affinity purified glycoproteins, and a recombinant antigen is known to be highly specific to Taenia solium cysticercosis in humans and pigs. These techniques were applied for dogs in the highly endemic area of cysticercosis in Papua (Irian Jaya), Indonesia. Analysis of dog sera by both ELISA and immunoblot revealed 7 of 64 dogs were highly positive. Examination of two sero-positive dogs revealed cysticerci of T. solium in the brain and heart of these dogs. Mitochondrial DNA analysis confirmed that they were the same as T. solium previously confirmed from pigs and biopsies from local people from Irian Jaya. It is suggested that the life cycle of T. solium may be completed not only between humans and pigs but also between humans and dogs.