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Temperature preferences and small-scale distribution patterns of four Dermatocarpon taxa in the catchment areas of two Bulgarian rivers were analyzed. Taxa with an overall alpine or arctic-alpine distribution were restricted to microhabitats with the lowest water and rock surface temperatures. A trend for increasing Dermatocarpon rivulorum thallus diameter and colony size (aggregates of thalli) with decreasing temperature was identified. Data on pH and conductivity of the water for the study sites are provided for all taxa. Dermatocarpon arnoldianum is reported for the first time from Bulgaria, confirmed by ITS sequence data, and its known range extends to South-East Europe. All previous records of D. rivulorum from Bulgaria were based on misidentified specimens of D. arnoldianum. Freshwater taxa of Dermatocarpon are proposed as a tool for monitoring the biological effects of temperature changes due to global climate change. Thallus and colony size are recommended as additional features for monitoring populations of threatened Dermatocarpon species.
Rutile grains occur extensively in host phases of biotite and quartz-feldspar aggregate in high-temperature paragneisses of the Mogok metamorphic belt of Myanmar. They occur as an isolated phase and sometimes show intergrowth texture with ilmenite. Most rutile grains contain up to 3.7 wt.% Nb2O5, which shows positive correlations with Fe and trivalent elements. Niobium substitutes for Ti by a coupled substitution with the trivalent cations (M3+) of Nb5+M3+Ti4+-2. Fine-grained rutile grains included in ilmenite are distinctly poor in Nb (<0.1 wt.% as Nb2O5) and contain Fe of 1.7–3.2 wt.% as Fe2O3, suggesting vacancybearing substitution of Fe3+4 Ti4+-3□–1, where □ indicates a vacancy. The rutile grains in the felsic phases contain high Zr contents of up to 4200 ppm, suggesting equilibrium temperatures over 800°C using the Ti-in-rutile geothermometer. These high-temperature conditions are consistent with those estimated by conventional methods reported in the literature and suggest widespread occurrences of the upperamphibolite and granulite facies metamorphic rocks in the middle segment of the Mogok metamorphic belt. In contrast, the Zr contents of rutile grains in biotite are usually <1000 ppm, implying equilibrium temperatures lower than 750°C. Most of the rutile grains poorer in Zr might have been included in biotite and were isolated from the zircon-bearing system during an early stage of prograde metamorphism. Some other rutile grains poorer in Zr might have been an exsolved phase from Ti-rich biotite during retrograde metamorphism, which was furthered by the infiltration of metamorphic fluid under lower-amphibolite facies conditions.
The new species Xenolecia cataractarum Fryday is described from Campbell Island. It differs from X. spadicomma, the only other species of the genus, in having much smaller apothecia and ascospores, an olivaceously pigmented epihymenium (brown in X. spadicomma), and a thallus with a non-amyloid medulla and norstictic acid (amyloid medulla and confluentic acid in X. spadicomma). Xenolecia spadicomma is reported here from several localities on the Falkland Islands and three from the Región de Los Lagos, Chile, which are the first reports of this species since its description from Isla Wellington in the south-west of Patagonia in 1868. A full description of X. spadicomma is also provided.
An outbreak of gastroenteritis affected 453 attendees (attack rate 28·5%) of six separate events held at a hotel in Singapore. Active case detection, case-control studies, hygiene inspections and microbial analysis of food, environmental and stool samples were conducted to determine the aetiology of the outbreak and the modes of transmission. The only commonality was the food, crockery and cutlery provided and/or handled by the hotel's Chinese banquet kitchen. Stool specimens from 34 cases and 15 food handlers were positive for norovirus genogroup II. The putative index case was one of eight norovirus-positive food handlers who had worked while they were symptomatic. Several food samples and remnants tested positive for Escherichia coli or high faecal coliforms, aerobic plate counts and/or total coliforms, indicating poor food hygiene. This large common-source outbreak of norovirus gastroenteritis was caused by the consumption of contaminated food and/or contact with contaminated crockery or cutlery provided or handled by the hotel's Chinese banquet kitchen.
Efficient emergency and disaster response is challenged by environmental conditions exceeding test reagent storage and operating specifications. We assessed the effectiveness of vial and foil packaging in preserving point-of-care (POC) glucose and lactate test strip performance in humid conditions.
Glucose and lactate test strips in both packaging were exposed to mean relative humidity of 97.0 ± 1.1% in an environmental chamber for up to 168 hours. At defined time points, stressed strips were removed and tested in pairs with unstressed strips using whole blood samples spiked to glucose concentrations of 60, 100, and 250 mg/dL (n = 20 paired measurements per level). A Wilcoxon signed rank test was used to compare stressed and unstressed test strip measurements.
Stressed glucose and lactate test strip measurements differed significantly from unstressed strips, and were inconsistent between experimental trials. Median glucose paired difference was as high as 12.5 mg/dL at the high glucose test concentration. Median lactate bias was −0.2 mmol/L. Stressed strips from vial (3) and foil (7) packaging failed to produce results.
Both packaging designs appeared to protect glucose and lactate test strips for at least 1 week of high humidity stress. Documented strip failures revealed the need for improved manufacturing process. (Disaster Med Public Health Preparedness. 2014;0:1–7)
In Vietnam, highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) H5N1 infections in poultry often occur without concomitant clinical signs and outbreaks are not consistently reported. Live bird markets represent a convenient site for surveillance that does not rely on farmers' notifications. Two H5N1 surveys were conducted at live bird markets/slaughter points in 39 districts (five provinces) in the Red River, Mekong delta, and central Vietnam during January and May 2011. Oropharyngeal and rectal swab samples from 12 480 ducks were tested for H5N1 by reverse transcription–polymerase chain reaction in pools of five. Traders and stallholders were interviewed using standardized questionnaires; 3·3% of pools tested positive. The highest prevalence (6·6%) corresponded to the Mekong delta, and no H5N1 was detected in the two Red River provinces. The surveys identified key risk behaviours of traders and stallholders. It is recommended that market surveys are implemented over time as a tool to evaluate progress in HPAI control in Vietnam.
We have measured the magnetomechanical coupling coefficient of Metglas®2605SC (Fe81B13.5C2) ribbons that were annealed into 1.27 and 0.8 cm diameter cylinders. Lengths ranged from 0.6 to 5 cm. A novel furnace was constructed in which a cylindrical magnetic field was supplied by a current carrying copper rod. During the annealing, a 300 A current created a circumferential field of more than 6400 A/m. Annealing temperatures ranged from 380 to 420 ºC. Large shifts in both the optimum bias field and the coupling coefficient as a function of length and diameter were found due to demagnetizing effects. Impedance vs. frequency measurements show large numbers of modes, some of which are field dependent. Effective coupling coefficientsof the lowest order longitudinal mode were calculated from impedance measurements by using k2 = 1-f2r/f2a, where fr, and fa. are the resonant and antiresonant frequencies respectively. Coupling coefficients for 5 cm long cylinders were as high as 0.58. When the demagnetizing factor is taken into account, we find material coupling coefficients as high as 0.89.
Intermediaries are seen as important actors in facilitating payments for environmental services (PES). However, few data exist on the adequacy of the services provided by intermediaries and the impacts of their interventions. Using four PES case studies in Vietnam, this paper analyses the roles of government agencies, non-government organizations, international agencies, local organizations and professional consulting firms as PES intermediaries. The findings indicate that these intermediaries are essential in supporting PES establishment. Their roles are as service and information providers, mediators, arbitrators, equalizers, representatives, watchdogs, developers of standards and bridge builders. Concerns have been raised about the quality of intermediaries’ participatory work, political influence on intermediaries’ activities and the neutral status of intermediaries. Although local organizations are strongly driven by the government, they are important channels for the poor to express their opinions. However, to act as environmental services (ES) sellers, local organizations need to overcome numerous challenges, particularly related to capacity for monitoring ES and enforcement of contracts. Relationships amongst intermediaries are complex and should be carefully examined by PES stakeholders to avoid negative impact on the poor. Each of the intermediaries may operate at a different level and can have different functions but a multi-sector approach is required for an effective PES implementation.
To assess the folate and vitamin B12 status of a group of Vietnamese women of reproductive age and to estimate the rate of neural tube defects (NTD) based on red blood cell (RBC) folate concentrations.
Design and subjects
A representative sample of non-pregnant women (15–49 years) living in Hanoi City (n 244) and Hai Duong Province (n 245).
RBC folate, plasma vitamin B12 and plasma holo-transcobalamin (holoTC), a sensitive indicator of vitamin B12 status.
Mean (95 % CI) concentrations of RBC folate, plasma B12 and plasma holoTC were 856 (837, 876) nmol/l, 494 (475, 513) pmol/l and 78 (74, 82) pmol/l, respectively. Only 3 % and 4 % of women had plasma B12 and holoTC concentrations indicative of deficiency. No woman had an RBC folate concentration indicative of deficiency (<317 nmol/l). Only 47 % of women had an RBC folate concentration ≥905 nmol/l. Accordingly, we predict the NTD rate in these regions of Vietnam to be 14·7 (14·2, 15·1) per 10 000 pregnancies.
There was no evidence of folate and vitamin B12 deficiency among this population of Vietnamese women. However, suboptimal folate status may be placing three out of five women at increased risk of NTD. Reductions in NTD rates are still possible and women would benefit from additional folic acid during the periconceptional period from either supplements or fortified foods.
Few studies have been conducted in Vietnam on the epidemiology of healthcare-associated infections or antimicrobial use. Thus, we sought to determine the prevalence of and risk factors for surgical-site infections (SSIs) and to document antimicrobial use in surgical patients in a large healthcare facility in Vietnam.
We conducted a point-prevalence survey of SSIs and antimicrobial use at Cho Ray Hospital, Ho Chi Minh City, a 1,250-bed inpatient facility. All patients on the 11 surgical wards and 2 intensive care units who had surgery within 30 days before the survey date were included.
Of 391 surgical patients, 56 (14.3%) had an SSI. When we compared patients with and without SSIs, factors associated with infection included trauma (relative risk [RR], 2.65; 95% confidence interval [CI95], 1.60 to 4.37; P < .001), emergency surgery (RR, 2.74; CI95, 1.65 to 4.55; P < .001), and dirty wounds (RR, 3.77; CI95, 2.39 to 5.96; P < .001). Overall, 198 (51%) of the patients received antimicrobials more than 8 hours before surgery and 390 (99.7%) received them after surgery. Commonly used antimicrobials included third-generation cephalosporins and aminoglycosides. Thirty isolates were identified from 26 SSI patient cultures; of the 25 isolates undergoing antimicrobial susceptibility testing, 22 (88%) were resistant to ceftriaxone and 24 (92%) to gentamicin.
Our data show that (1) SSIs are prevalent at Cho Ray Hospital; (2) antimicrobial use among surgical patients is widespread and inconsistent with published guidelines; and (3) pathogens often are resistant to commonly used antimicrobials. SSI prevention interventions, including appropriate use of antimicrobials, are needed in this population.
Using fistulated calves, the influence of the age, type of dietary protein and weaning on the secretion of chymosin and pepsin by the abomasum were studied. The abomasum secreted both chymosin and pepsin when the animals were fed milk. Chymosin secretion appeared to be independent of the age of the animals, whereas a slow increase in pepsin secretion was observed as the calves aged. Several preruminant animals were fed either a skim-milk diet or a milt substitute in which proteins were provided by fish, soya or whey concentrates. Each of these 3 milk substitutes led to a decrease in chymosin secretion without modification of pepsin secretion. Chymosin secretion was partly restored when the calves were again given a skim-milk diet. At weaning, chymosin secretion dropped abruptly, but the pepsin level was not affected. These results indicate that milk (most probably its casein fraction) is responsible for the activation of chymosin secretion.
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