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Hydrogenated microcrystalline Silicon-Germanium (μc-SiGe:H) thin films were deposited using the Plasma Enhanced Chemical Vapor Deposition (PECVD) technique from a gas mixture of SiH4, GeH4, H2 and Ar at a substrate temperature of 200 ° C. The films were deposited at a pressure of 1.5 Torr, while the RF power was varied in the range of 20 W to 35 W. Structural, optical and electrical characterization was performed in the films, Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) was performed in order to analyze the hydrogen bonding of silicon and germanium, while Raman spectroscopy was used in order to analyze the crystallinity of the films. Through the optical and electrical characterization of the films, parameters such as the optical band gap (Eg) and the activation energy (EA) were obtained, respectively. The conductivity of the films changed up two to orders of magnitude from dark conditions to illumination AM 1.5. Finally, the correlation between deposition RF power and the film properties is presented.
This work presents a study of the chemical structure, morphology, electromagnetic absorption and electric conductivity of thin films. The electrochemical synthesis of polypyrrole/surfactant (PPy/SDS) films doped with iodine is carried out by glow discharge plasma in aqueous solution, at different reaction times. The morphology shows agglomerations of particles dispersed in the surface. Infrared spectroscopic analysis shows absorption on the wavenumbers 2915,2362 and 2082 cm-1 corresponding to chemical groups C-H, C=O and R/N=C=S, respectively. The electromagnetic absorption had higher response sensitivity between 340 to 800 nm in the visible region, and the electric conductivity of samples oscillated between 5.0x10-6 and 2.0x10-5 S/cm. The thickness films significantly increased when doping with iodine, reaching values up to 50 μm.
Energy balance-related behaviours (EBRB) are established in childhood and seem to persist through to adulthood. A lower parental educational level was associated with unhealthy behavioural patterns. The aim of the study is to identify clusters of EBRB and examine their association with preschool children’s BMI and maternal, paternal and parental education. A subsample of the ToyBox study (n 5387) conducted in six European countries was used. Six behavioural clusters (‘healthy diet and low activity’, ‘active’, ‘healthy lifestyle’, ‘high water and screen time; low fruits and vegetables (F&V) and physical activity (PA)’, ‘unhealthy lifestyle’ and ‘high F&V consumers’) emerged. The healthiest group characterised by high water and F&V consumption and high PA z scores (‘healthy lifestyle’) was more prevalent among preschool children with at least one medium- or higher-educated parent and showed markedly healthier trends for all the included EBRB. In the opposite, the ‘unhealthy lifestyle’ cluster (characterised by high soft drinks and screen time z scores, and low water, F&V and PA z scores) was more prevalent among children with lower parental, paternal and maternal education levels. OR identified that children with lower maternal, paternal and parental education levels were less likely to be allocated in the ‘healthy lifestyle’ cluster and more likely to be allocated in the ‘unhealthy lifestyle’ cluster. The ‘unhealthy lifestyle’ cluster was more prevalent among children with parents in lower parental educational levels and children who were obese. Therefore, parental educational level is one of the key factors that should be considered when developing childhood obesity prevention interventions.
To describe dietary patterns by applying cluster analysis and to describe the cluster memberships of European children over time and their association with body composition changes.
The analyses included k-means clustering based on the similarities between the relative frequencies of consumption of forty-three food items and regression models were fitted to assess the association between dietary patterns and body composition changes.
Primary schools and pre-schools of selected regions in Italy, Estonia, Cyprus, Belgium, Sweden, Hungary, Germany and Spain.
Participants (n 8341) in the baseline (2–9 years old) and follow-up (4–11 years old) surveys of the IDEFICS (Identification and prevention of Dietary- and lifestyle-induced health EFfects In Children and infantS) study.
Three persistent clusters were obtained at baseline and follow-up. Children consistently allocated to the ‘processed’ cluster presented increased BMI (β=0·050; 95 % CI 0·006, 0·093), increased waist circumference (β=0·071; 95 % CI 0·001, 0·141) and increased fat mass gain (β=0·052; 95 % CI 0·014, 0·090) over time v. children allocated to the ‘healthy’ cluster. Being in the ‘processed’–‘sweet’ cluster combination was also linked to increased BMI (β=0·079; 95 % CI 0·015, 0·143), increased waist circumference (β=0·172; 95 % CI 0·069, 0·275) and increased fat mass gain (β=0·076; 95 % CI 0·019, 0·133) over time v. the ‘healthy’ cluster.
Children consistently showing a processed dietary pattern or changing from a processed pattern to a sweet pattern presented the most unfavourable changes in fat mass and abdominal fat. These findings support the need to promote overall healthy dietary habits in obesity prevention and health promotion programmes targeting children.
New speleothem records from northeastern Iberian caves provide data to explore the climatic patterns during the Holocene. We present δ13C and Mg/Ca from three speleothems from two different caves located in the Iberian Range allowing replication of the climatic signal for several millennia. Through the integration of those stalagmites covering since the Holocene onset to 2 ka, the early Holocene (11.7–8.5 ka) appears as the wettest interval. A marked change towards aridity is observed during the middle Holocene (8.5–4.8 ka) and an increase of humidity afterwards (4.8–2 ka). This three-part pattern, contrasting with other Iberian sequences, seems to be associated with the different role that seasonality has played in the response of different proxies (or records) to changes in water availability. Interpreting our speleothem records as changes in winter-spring precipitation along the Holocene allows reconciling previous data on hydrological variability from the western Mediterranean borderlands.
The accurate description of the growth or dissolution dynamics of a soluble gas bubble in a super- or undersaturated solution requires taking into account a number of physical effects that contribute to the instantaneous mass transfer rate. One of these effects is the so-called history effect. It refers to the contribution of the local concentration boundary layer around the bubble that has developed from past mass transfer events between the bubble and liquid surroundings. In Part 1 of this work (Peñas-López et al., J. Fluid Mech., vol. 800, 2016b, pp. 180–212), a theoretical treatment of this effect was given for a spherical, isolated bubble. Here, Part 2 provides an experimental and numerical study of the history effect regarding a spherical bubble attached to a horizontal flat plate and in the presence of gravity. The simulation technique developed in this paper is based on a streamfunction–vorticity formulation that may be applied to other flows where bubbles or drops exchange mass in the presence of a gravity field. Using this numerical tool, simulations are performed for the same conditions used in the experiments, in which the bubble is exposed to subsequent growth and dissolution stages, using stepwise variations in the ambient pressure. Besides proving the relevance of the history effect, the simulations highlight the importance that boundary-induced advection has to accurately describe bubble growth and shrinkage, i.e. the bubble radius evolution. In addition, natural convection has a significant influence that shows up in the velocity field even at short times, although given the supersaturation conditions studied here, the bubble evolution is expected to be mainly diffusive.
Since 2002, our team at the University of Jaén's Research Institute for Iberian Archaeology has been undertaking an archaeological research project focusing on the analysis of the site of a conflict that can indisputably be dated to the final phase of the Second Punic War. Based on the topography, descriptions in the ancient sources, and archaeological data, we present the hypothesis that the site we have located corresponds to that of the battle of Baecula. In that confrontation in 208 B.C., Scipio the Younger faced Hasdrubal Barca. It was a momentous battle, at least in terms of its subsequent outcome, given that it could be considered the event that triggered Hasdrubal's withdrawal to Italy.
Our research project has yielded information which we believe to be paradigmatic in two respects. First, we have been able to ascertain the size of the area over which an armed confrontation of this type would have taken place, thanks to the identification of determining elements such as the different camps set up for the battle and their sizes. It covers the area where the armies clashed, where they were positioned and deployed, their movements on the battlefield, and so forth. Second, thanks to intensive sampling, we have recovered a corpus of finds that may be used in the future as a reference for the allocation of other sites to the period of the Second Punic War.
Impulsivity has been widely studied in the context of traffic. The trait is believed to be the root of some accidents, along with other variables like aggression and anger. The present research objective is to develop a new scale – the I-Driving Scale (IDS) – to evaluate and measure the construct of impulsivity in specific driving situations. To that end, two studies were conducted, with 162 and 107 participants, respectively. In both studies, participants were recruited via their social networks, and answered anonymously. In addition to the IDS, they completed the Use the Vehicle to Express Anger subscale of the Driving Anger Expression Inventory (DAX), the Driving Anger Scale (DAS), and the Barratt Impulsivity Scale (BIS11), and also provided demographic information. The final scale had 11 items falling into two factors: impatience, and aggressiveness/abruptness. The results show a high consistency (αT = .81, αI = .70, and αA = .85 in the first study; αT = .83, αI = .80, and αA = .88 in the second study). Statistical results of Exploratory Factor Analysis in the first sample indicated goodness of fit to a two-factor model (RMSR = .057, GFI = .98). The second study confirmed that factorial structure (χ2/df = 80.50/43 = 1.87, RMSEA = .088, CFI = .94, TLI = .92). Correlations with other measures indicated the Impatience subscale is associated with different expressions of anger behind the wheel, and directly correlated with the loss of driver’s license points. Furthermore, the Aggressiveness or Abruptness subscale was associated with more mechanical aspects, and correlated inversely with age.
Herein we hypothesise the positive effects of kojibiose (KJ), a prebiotic disaccharide, selected for reducing hepatic expression of inflammatory markers in vivo that could modulate the severity of saturated arachidic acid (ARa)-induced liver dysfunction in hyperglycaemic rats. Animals were fed daily (20 d) with ARa (0·3 mg) together or not with KJ (22 mg approximately 0·5 %, w/w diet). Glucose, total TAG and cholesterol contents and the phospholipid profile were determined in serum samples. Liver sections were collected for the expression (mRNA) of enzymes and innate biomarkers, and intrahepatic macrophage and T-cell populations were analysed by flow cytometry. ARa administration increased the proportion of liver to body weight that was associated with an increased (by 11 %) intrahepatic macrophage population. These effects were ameliorated when feeding with KJ, which also normalised the plasmatic levels of TAG and N-acyl-phosphatidylethenolamine in response to tissue damage. These results indicate that daily supplementation of KJ significantly improves the severity of ARa-induced hepatic alterations.
Exploring changes in children's diet over time and the relationship between these changes and socio-economic status (SES) may help to understand the impact of social inequalities on dietary patterns. The aim of the present study was to describe dietary patterns by applying a cluster analysis to 9301 children participating in the baseline (2–9 years old) and follow-up (4–11 years old) surveys of the Identification and Prevention of Dietary- and Lifestyle-induced Health Effects in Children and Infants Study, and to describe the cluster memberships of these children over time and their association with SES. We applied the K-means clustering algorithm based on the similarities between the relative frequencies of consumption of forty-two food items. The following three consistent clusters were obtained at baseline and follow-up: processed (higher frequency of consumption of snacks and fast food); sweet (higher frequency of consumption of sweet foods and sweetened drinks); healthy (higher frequency of consumption of fruits, vegetables and wholemeal products). Children with higher-educated mothers and fathers and the highest household income were more likely to be allocated to the healthy cluster at baseline and follow-up and less likely to be allocated to the sweet cluster. Migrants were more likely to be allocated to the processed cluster at baseline and follow-up. Applying the cluster analysis to derive dietary patterns at the two time points allowed us to identify groups of children from a lower socio-economic background presenting persistently unhealthier dietary profiles. This finding reflects the need for healthy eating interventions specifically targeting children from lower socio-economic backgrounds.
The aim of the current study was to asses the effect of goat or cow milk-based diets, either normal or Fe-overloaded and folic acid supplement on some aspects of hepatic physiology, enzymatic antioxidant defence and lipid peroxidation in liver, brain and erythrocyte of control and anaemic rats after chronic Fe repletion. 160 male Wistar rats were placed on 40 d in two groups, a control group receiving normal-Fe diet and the Fe-deficient group receiving low Fe diet. Lately, the rats were fed with goat and cow milk-based diets during 30 d, with normal-Fe content or Fe-overload and either with normal folic or folic acid supplemented. Fe-overload increased plasma alanine transaminase and aspartate transaminase levels when cow milk was supplied. Dietary folate supplementation reduced plasma transaminases levels in animals fed goat milk with chronic Fe overload. A remarkable increase in the superoxide dismutase activity was observed in the animals fed cow milk. Dietary folate supplement lead to a decrease on the activity of this enzyme in all the tissues studied with both milk-based diets. A concomitant increment in catalase was also observed. The increase in lipid peroxidation products levels in rats fed cow milk with Fe-overload, suggest an imbalance in the functioning of the enzymatic antioxidant defence. In conclusion, dietary folate-supplemented goat milk reduces both plasma transaminases levels, suggesting a hepatoprotective effect and has beneficial effects in situation of Fe-overload, improving the antioxidant enzymes activities and reducing lipid peroxidation.
In this talk, I report results from galaxy merger simulations, which suggest the existence of a ring of star formation produced by close galaxy encounters. This is a generic feature of all galaxy interactions, provided that the disc spins are sufficiently aligned. This signature can be used to identify close galaxy pairs that have actually suffered a close interaction.
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.
A number of systems based on synthetic molecules, among them cationic liposomes and poly(ethylene imine)-based polymers, have been proposed as delivery vehicles for nucleic acids. Some of these systems have even reached the market, ensuring efficient and transient transfection levels in a variety of cell types. However, toxicity issues have limited their application in vivo. In this context, chitosan, a biocompatible and biodegradable polysaccharide, has been proposed as a promising alternative for the delivery of nucleic acid-based molecules. Here we present an overview of the state of the art of chitosan-based vectors for nucleic acid delivery and the most recent data on the in vivo testing of the proposed systems. We additionally express our view on the barriers that might be hampering the translation of this knowledge into clinical practice and the challenges that need to be fulfilled for these promising vehicles to reach patients.
In this work, we report the effects of curing time on properties of SiO2 films produced from Spin-On Glass (SOG) diluted with H2O and cured at 200°C. The electrical characterization showed that the insulator breakdown field for the films produced from SOG diluted with H2O with 1 Hr of curing time was approximately 5 MV/cm while for 6.5 Hrs of curing time the breakdown field was 21 MV/cm. Also, the refractive index and surface roughness were improved with longer curing time.
To compare, specifically by age group, proxy-reported food group estimates obtained from the food frequency section of the Children's Eating Habits questionnaire (CEHQ-FFQ) against the estimates of two non-consecutive 24 h dietary recalls (24-HDR).
Estimates of food group intakes assessed via the forty-three-food-group CEHQ-FFQ were compared with those obtained by a computerized 24-HDR. Agreement on frequencies of intakes (equal to the number of portions per recall period) between the two instruments was examined using crude and de-attenuated Pearson's correlation coefficients, cross-classification analyses, weighted kappa statistics (κw) and Bland–Altman analysis.
Kindergartens/schools from eight European countries participating in the IDEFICS (Identification and prevention of Dietary- and lifestyle-induced health EFfects In Children and infantS) Study cross-sectional survey (2007–2008).
Children aged 2–9 years (n 2508, 50·4 % boys).
The CEHQ-FFQ provided higher intake estimates for most of the food groups than the 24-HDR. De-attenuated Pearson correlation coefficients ranged from 0·01 (sweetened fruit) to 0·48 (sweetened milk) in children aged 2–<6 years (mean = 0·25) and from 0·01 (milled cereal) to 0·44 (water) in children aged 6–9 years (mean = 0·23). An average of 32 % and 31 % of food group intakes were assigned to the same quartile in younger and older children, respectively, and classification into extreme opposite quartiles was ≤12 % for all food groups in both age groups. Mean κw was 0·20 for 2–<6-year-olds and 0·17 for 6–9-year-olds.
The strength of association estimates assessed by the CEHQ-FFQ and the 24-HDR varied by food group and by age group. Observed level of agreement and CEHQ-FFQ ability to rank children according to intakes of food groups were considered to be low.
To assess the long-term relationship between tree nut consumption and the risk of developing metabolic syndrome (MetS).
Nut consumption was collected using a validated 136-item FFQ. The MetS was defined according to the International Diabetes Federation and American Heart Association/National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute harmonizing definition. The association between nut consumption and MetS was assessed with logistic regression models adjusting for potential confounders. We compared the incidence of MetS between extreme categories of nut intake (≥2 servings/week v. never/almost never) after 6 years of follow-up.
The SUN Project (Seguimiento Universidad de Navarra, University of Navarra Follow-up) is a prospective cohort study, formed of Spanish university graduates. Information is gathered by mailed questionnaires collected biennially. Nut consumption and MetS information was collected by self-reported data.
Participants (n 9887) initially free of MetS or diabetes and followed up for a minimum of 6 years were included.
We observed 567 new cases of MetS during follow-up. Participants who consumed nuts ≥2 servings/week presented a 32 % lower risk of developing MetS than those who never/almost never consumed (adjusted OR = 0·68, 95 % CI 0·50, 0·92). The inverse association was stronger among participants who were health professionals.
Nut consumption was significantly associated with lower risk of developing MetS after a 6-year follow-up period in a cohort of Spanish graduates.
Oogenesis is a highly complex process that requires the exquisite temporal and spatial regulation of gene expression at multiple levels. Skin–embryo–brain–oocyte homeobox (Sebox) gene encodes a transcription factor that is highly expressed in germinal vesicle stage oocytes and that plays an essential role in early embryogenesis at the 2-cell stage in the mouse. As Sebox is also expressed in mouse fetal ovaries, the aim of the present study was to study its role during the early oogenesis in vitro. Expression of Sebox was low in 15.5 to 17.5 days post coitum (dpc) ovaries, showed a peak at 18.5 dpc and then its expression decreased dramatically in newborn ovaries. Sebox expression was efficiently knocked down (>80%) in fetal mouse ovary explants in culture using RNAi technology. When fetal ovary explants were transfected with Sebox-specific RNAi, the number of oocytes at germinal vesicle stage and showing a diameter of 40–70 μm was decreased significantly to 75% after 7 days of culture relative to the negative control, and to 22.4% after 10 days of culture, thus indicating that Sebox plays an important role in the early oogenesis in mice.
To assess the relationship between parental education level and the consumption frequency of obesity-related foods in European children.
The analysis was based on data from the cross-sectional baseline survey of a prospective cohort study. The effects of parental education on food consumption were explored using analysis of covariance and logistic regression.
Primary schools and pre-schools of selected regions in Italy, Estonia, Cyprus, Belgium, Sweden, Hungary, Germany and Spain.
Participants (n 14 426) of the IDEFICS baseline cohort study aged 2 to 9 years.
Parental education level affected the intake of obesity-related foods in children. Children in the low and medium parental education level groups had lower odds of more frequently eating low-sugar and low-fat foods (vegetables, fruits, pasta/noodles/rice and wholemeal bread) and higher odds of more frequently eating high-sugar and high-fat foods (fried potatoes, fruits with sugar and nuts, snacks/desserts and sugared beverages; P < 0·001). The largest odds ratio differences were found in the low category (reference category: high) for vegetables (OR = 0·56; 95 % CI 0·47, 0·65), fruits (OR = 0·56; 95 % CI 0·48, 0·65), fruits with sugar and nuts (OR = 2·23; 95 % CI 1·92, 2·59) and sugared beverages (OR = 2·01; 95 % CI 1·77, 2·37).
Low parental education level was associated with intakes of sugar-rich and fatty foods among children, while high parental education level was associated with intakes of low-sugar and low-fat foods. These findings should be taken into account in public health interventions, with more targeted policies aiming at an improvement of children's diet.