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Climatic change that affects biological productivity is often argued to be a primary force influencing human activities during the glacial period. To test this assumption, we combine in-site pollen, paleoclimatic, and archaeological data from the Dadiwan site and nearby areas on the western Loess Plateau (WLP) that date to Marine Oxygen Isotope Stage (MIS) 3. Our comparison of multiple datasets suggests that regional human activities increased when the vegetation around the Dadiwan area shifted from forest steppe in the early MIS 3 (59–46.7 ka) to steppe in the middle to late MIS 3 (46.7–29.5 ka). Our results indicate that regional human activities increased again during the late MIS 3 when the amount of precipitation was higher, as indicated by the lower Artemisia proportion. We suggest that increased precipitation on the WLP enhanced the above-ground biomass production and may be responsible for an increase in human activity and population in this region.
Prenatal adversity shapes child neurodevelopment and risk for later mental health problems. The quality of the early care environment can buffer some of the negative effects of prenatal adversity on child development. Retrospective studies, in adult samples, highlight epigenetic modifications as sentinel markers of the quality of the early care environment; however, comparable data from pediatric cohorts are lacking. Participants were drawn from the Maternal Adversity Vulnerability and Neurodevelopment (MAVAN) study, a longitudinal cohort with measures of infant attachment, infant development, and child mental health. Children provided buccal epithelial samples (mean age = 6.99, SD = 1.33 years, n = 226), which were used for analyses of genome-wide DNA methylation and genetic variation. We used a series of linear models to describe the association between infant attachment and (a) measures of child outcome and (b) DNA methylation across the genome. Paired genetic data was used to determine the genetic contribution to DNA methylation at attachment-associated sites. Infant attachment style was associated with infant cognitive development (Mental Development Index) and behavior (Behavior Rating Scale) assessed with the Bayley Scales of Infant Development at 36 months. Infant attachment style moderated the effects of prenatal adversity on Behavior Rating Scale scores at 36 months. Infant attachment was also significantly associated with a principal component that accounted for 11.9% of the variation in genome-wide DNA methylation. These effects were most apparent when comparing children with a secure versus a disorganized attachment style and most pronounced in females. The availability of paired genetic data revealed that DNA methylation at approximately half of all infant attachment-associated sites was best explained by considering both infant attachment and child genetic variation. This study provides further evidence that infant attachment can buffer some of the negative effects of early adversity on measures of infant behavior. We also highlight the interplay between infant attachment and child genotype in shaping variation in DNA methylation. Such findings provide preliminary evidence for a molecular signature of infant attachment and may help inform attachment-focused early intervention programs.
Northern China has been identified as an independent centre of domestication for various types of millet and other plant species, but tracing the earliest evidence for the exploitation of wild cereals and thus the actual domestication process has proven challenging. Evidence from microscopic analyses of stone tools, including use-wear, starch and phytolith analyses, however, show that in the Shizitan region of north China, various plants have been exploited as far back as 28000 years ago, and wild millets have been harvested and processed by the time of the Last Glacial Maximum, 24000 years ago. This is some 18000–14000 years before the earliest evidence for domesticated millet in this region.
To summarize and discuss logistic and administrative challenges we encountered during the Benefits of Enhanced Terminal Room (BETR) Disinfection Study and lessons learned that are pertinent to future utilization of ultraviolet (UV) disinfection devices in other hospitals
Multicenter cluster randomized trial
SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS
Nine hospitals in the southeastern United States
All participating hospitals developed systems to implement 4 different strategies for terminal room disinfection. We measured compliance with disinfection strategy, barriers to implementation, and perceptions from nurse managers and environmental services (EVS) supervisors throughout the 28-month trial.
Implementation of enhanced terminal disinfection with UV disinfection devices provides unique challenges, including time pressures from bed control personnel, efficient room identification, negative perceptions from nurse managers, and discharge volume. In the course of the BETR Disinfection Study, we utilized several strategies to overcome these barriers: (1) establishing safety as the priority; (2) improving communication between EVS, bed control, and hospital administration; (3) ensuring availability of necessary resources; and (4) tracking and providing feedback on compliance. Using these strategies, we deployed ultraviolet (UV) disinfection devices in 16,220 (88%) of 18,411 eligible rooms during our trial (median per hospital, 89%; IQR, 86%–92%).
Implementation of enhanced terminal room disinfection strategies using UV devices requires recognition and mitigation of 2 key barriers: (1) timely and accurate identification of rooms that would benefit from enhanced terminal disinfection and (2) overcoming time constraints to allow EVS cleaning staff sufficient time to properly employ enhanced terminal disinfection methods.
The quality of prenatal maternal mental health, from psychological stress and depressive symptoms to anxiety and other nonpsychotic mental disorders, profoundly affects fetal neurodevelopment. Despite the evidence for the influence of positive mental well-being on health, there is, to our knowledge, no research examining the possible effects of positive antenatal mental health on the development of the offspring. Using exploratory bifactor analysis, this prospective study (n = 1,066) demonstrated the feasibility of using common psychiatric screening tools to examine the effect of positive maternal mental health. Antenatal mental health was assessed during 26th week of pregnancy. The effects on offspring were assessed when the child was 12, 18, and 24 months old. Results showed that positive antenatal mental health was uniquely associated with the offspring's cognitive, language and parentally rated competences. This study shows that the effects of positive maternal mental health are likely to be specific and distinct from the sheer absence of symptoms of depression or anxiety.
Annual bluegrass is a weed species in turfgrass environments known for exhibiting resistance to multiple herbicide modes of action, including photosystem II (PSII) inhibitors. To evaluate populations of annual bluegrass for susceptibility to PSII inhibitors of varied chemistries, populations were treated with herbicides from triazolinone, triazine, and substituted urea families: amicarbazone, atrazine, and diuron, respectively. Sequencing of the psbA gene confirmed the presence of a Ser264 to Gly amino acid substitution within populations that exhibited resistance to both atrazine and amicarbazone. A single biotype, DR3, which lacked any previously reported psbA gene point mutation, exhibited resistance to diuron, atrazine, and amicarbazone. DR3 had a significantly lower rate of absorption and translocation of atrazine and had enhanced atrazine metabolism when compared with both the Ser264 to Gly resistant mutant and susceptible biotypes. We thus report possible nontarget mechanisms of resistance to PSII-inhibiting herbicides in annual bluegrass.
To describe the epidemiology of complex surgical site infection (SSI) following commonly performed surgical procedures in community hospitals and to characterize trends of SSI prevalence rates over time for MRSA and other common pathogens
We prospectively collected SSI data at 29 community hospitals in the southeastern United States from 2008 through 2012. We determined the overall prevalence rates of SSI for commonly performed procedures during this 5-year study period. For each year of the study, we then calculated prevalence rates of SSI stratified by causative organism. We created log-binomial regression models to analyze trends of SSI prevalence over time for all pathogens combined and specifically for MRSA.
A total of 3,988 complex SSIs occurred following 532,694 procedures (prevalence rate, 0.7 infections per 100 procedures). SSIs occurred most frequently after small bowel surgery, peripheral vascular bypass surgery, and colon surgery. Staphylococcus aureus was the most common pathogen. The prevalence rate of SSI decreased from 0.76 infections per 100 procedures in 2008 to 0.69 infections per 100 procedures in 2012 (prevalence rate ratio [PRR], 0.90; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.82–1.00). A more substantial decrease in MRSA SSI (PRR, 0.69; 95% CI, 0.54–0.89) was largely responsible for this overall trend.
The prevalence of MRSA SSI decreased from 2008 to 2012 in our network of community hospitals. This decrease in MRSA SSI prevalence led to an overall decrease in SSI prevalence over the study period.
Increased temporal and frontal slow-wave delta (1–4 Hz) and theta (4–7
Hz) activities are the most consistent resting-state neural abnormalities
reported in schizophrenia. The frontal lobe is associated with negative
symptoms and cognitive abilities such as attention, with negative
symptoms and impaired attention associated with poor functional
To establish whether frontal dysfunction, as indexed by slowing, would be
associated with functional impairments.
Eyes-closed magnetoencephalography data were collected in 41 participants
with schizophrenia and 37 healthy controls, and frequency-domain source
imaging localised delta and theta activity.
Elevated delta and theta activity in right frontal and right
temporoparietal regions was observed in the schizophrenia
v. control group. In schizophrenia, right-frontal
delta activity was uniquely associated with negative but not positive
symptoms. In the full sample, increased right-frontal delta activity
predicted poorer attention and functional capacity.
Our findings suggest that treatment-associated decreases in slow-wave
activity could be accompanied by improved functional outcome and thus
The use of channel pressurisation in drawing microstructured optical fibres (MOFs) potentially allows for fine control of the internal structure of the fibre. By applying extra pressure inside the channels it is possible to counteract the effect of surface tension which would otherwise act to close the channels in the fibre as it is drawn. This paper extends the modelling approach of Stokes et al. (J. Fluid Mech., vol. 755, 2014, pp. 176–203) to include channel pressurisation. This approach treats the problem as two submodels for the flow, one in the axial direction along the fibre and another in the plane perpendicular to that direction. In the absence of channel pressurisation these models decoupled and were solved independently; we show that they become fully coupled when the internal channels are pressurised. The fundamental case of a fibre with an annular cross-section (containing one central channel) will be examined in detail. In doing this we consider both a forward problem to determine the shape of fibre from a known preform and an inverse problem to design a preform such that when drawn it will give a desired fibre geometry. Criteria on the pressure corresponding to fibre explosion and closure of the channel will be given that represent an improvement over similar criteria in the literature. A comparison between our model and a recent experiment is presented to demonstrate the effectiveness of the modelling approach. We make use of some recent work by Buchak et al. (J. Fluid Mech., vol. 778, 2015, pp. 5–38) to examine more complicated fibre geometries, where the cross-sectional shape of the internal channels is assumed to be elliptical and multiple channels are present. The examples presented here demonstrate the versatility of our modelling approach, where the subtleties of the interaction between surface tension and pressurisation can be revealed even for complex patterns of cross-sectional channels.
To determine the association (1) between shorter operative duration and surgical site infection (SSI) and (2) between surgeon median operative duration and SSI risk among first-time hip and knee arthroplasties.
Retrospective cohort study
A total of 43 community hospitals located in the southeastern United States.
Adults who developed SSIs according to National Healthcare Safety Network criteria within 365 days of first-time knee or hip arthroplasties performed between January 1, 2008 and December 31, 2012.
Log-binomial regression models estimated the association (1) between operative duration and SSI outcome and (2) between surgeon median operative duration and SSI outcome. Hip and knee arthroplasties were evaluated in separate models. Each model was adjusted for American Society of Anesthesiology score and patient age.
A total of 25,531 hip arthroplasties and 42,187 knee arthroplasties were included in the study. The risk of SSI in knee arthroplasties with an operative duration shorter than the 25th percentile was 0.40 times the risk of SSI in knee arthroplasties with an operative duration between the 25th and 75th percentile (risk ratio [RR], 0.40; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.38–0.56; P<.01). Short operative duration did not demonstrate significant association with SSI for hip arthroplasties (RR, 1.04; 95% CI, 0.79–1.37; P=.36). Knee arthroplasty surgeons with shorter median operative durations had a lower risk of SSI than surgeons with typical median operative durations (RR, 0.52; 95% CI, 0.43–0.64; P<.01).
Short operative durations were not associated with a higher SSI risk for knee or hip arthroplasty procedures in our analysis.
Infect. Control Hosp. Epidemiol. 2015;36(12):1431–1436
To evaluate seasonal variation in the rate of surgical site infections (SSI) following commonly performed surgical procedures.
Retrospective cohort study.
We analyzed 6 years (January 1, 2007, through December 31, 2012) of data from the 15 most commonly performed procedures in 20 hospitals in the Duke Infection Control Outreach Network. We defined summer as July through September. First, we performed 3 separate Poisson regression analyses (unadjusted, multivariable, and polynomial) to estimate prevalence rates and prevalence rate ratios of SSI following procedures performed in summer versus nonsummer months. Then, we stratified our results to obtain estimates based on procedure type and organism type. Finally, we performed a sensitivity analysis to test the robustness of our findings.
We identified 4,543 SSI following 441,428 surgical procedures (overall prevalence rate, 1.03/100 procedures). The rate of SSI was significantly higher during the summer compared with the remainder of the year (1.11/100 procedures vs 1.00/100 procedures; prevalence rate ratio, 1.11 [95% CI, 1.04–1.19]; P=.002). Stratum-specific SSI calculations revealed higher SSI rates during the summer for both spinal (P=.03) and nonspinal (P=.004) procedures and revealed higher rates during the summer for SSI due to either gram-positive cocci (P=.006) or gram-negative bacilli (P=.004). Multivariable regression analysis and sensitivity analyses confirmed our findings.
The rate of SSI following commonly performed surgical procedures was higher during the summer compared with the remainder of the year. Summer SSI rates remained elevated after stratification by organism and spinal versus nonspinal surgery, and rates did not change after controlling for other known SSI risk factors.
Infect. Control Hosp. Epidemiol. 2015;36(9):1011–1016
The reliability of InAlGaN multiple quantum well LEDs emitting around 308 nm has been investigated. The UV-B LEDs were stressed at constant current and current density, while the heat sink temperature was varied between 15°C and 80°C. The results reveal two different modes of the decrease of the optical power during aging. First, a fast reduction of the optical power within the first 100 h (mode 1) can be observed, followed by a slower degradation for operation times >100 h (mode 2). Mode 1 can be described as an initial degradation activation process which saturates after a certain time, whereas the second degradation mode can be described by a square-root time dependence of the optical power, suggesting a diffusion process to be involved. Both degradation modes are accompanied by changes of the I-V characteristic, particularly the reverse-bias leakage current and the drive voltage. Furthermore, the degradation behavior is strongly influenced by the temperature. Both, the maximum reduction of the optical power and the increase of the leakage current become stronger at higher temperatures.