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The current study aimed to select the strains of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) isolated from forage cactus plants and silage and assess their effects on silage fermentation and aerobic stability. Forty wild isolates from plant and cactus silage, classified as LAB, were evaluated for metabolite production and identified by 16S ribosomal DNA sequencing. These wild isolates were identified as Lactobacillus plantarum, Weissella cibaria, Weissella confusa and Weissella paramesenteroides and the LAB populations differed among the silage. The use of microbial inoculants did not influence gas or effluent losses in forage cactus silage. The silage inoculated with the microbial strain GP15 showed the highest number of LAB populations. The amounts of water-soluble carbohydrates (WSC) and ammonia nitrogen differed among the silage. The silage inoculated with the GP1 strain presented the highest WSC. Populations of enterobacteria and yeasts and moulds were below the minimum detection limit (<2.0 log cfu/g silage) in all the silage studied. The predominant action of inoculants was to maximize dry matter recovery of the silage, which could be the criterion adopted to select the strains of LAB for use as inoculants in Opuntia silage.
Although the tambaqui (Colossoma macropomum) is the most cultivated native fish species in Brazil, estimated breeding values for growth traits are rarely used for selection of superior individuals in commercial fingerling production. This study aimed to estimate the (co)variance components of growth traits. Body weight, length and width of 2500 tambaqui were determined at tagging and at 6 and 12 months after tagging in a commercial breeding programme in Brazil. Heritability estimates were low for traits measured at tagging (0.10 to 0.19) and moderate to high for traits measured at 6 and 12 months (0.23 to 0.81). Common full-sib effects were high at tagging (>73%), low at 6 months and negligible at 12 months. Positive genetic correlations were found among growth traits at 12 months (0.84 to 0.99) and between growth traits at 6 and 12 months (0.80 to 0.92). These results show that animal selection can be performed at 6 months after tagging. Expected genetic gains for growth traits ranged from 8% to 31%. A simulation of the sex ratio was performed, as individuals did not reach sexual maturity during the experimental period. Because of the sexual dimorphism, more accurate heritability estimates were obtained when considering the female proportion to be 90% in the high-weight group. The findings indicate that it is possible to obtain considerable genetic gains in growth by selecting for growth traits. The development of a tool to determine the sex of animals at early stages can improve the response to selection in tambaqui.
Barramundi are a highly valued aquaculture species, and as obligate carnivores they have a demonstrated preference for dietary protein over lipid or starch to fuel energetic growth demands. In order to investigate how carnivorous fish regulate nutritional cues, we examined the metabolic effects of feeding two iso-energetic diets that contained different proportions of digestible protein or starch energy. Fish fed a high proportion of dietary starch energy had a higher proportion of liver saturated fatty acids, but showed no change in plasma glucose levels, and few changes in the expression of genes regulating key hepatic metabolic pathways. Decreased activation of the mTOR growth signalling cascade was consistent with decreased growth performance values. The fractional synthetic rate (FSR = lipogenesis), measured by triglyceride (TAG) 2H-enrichment using 2H NMR, was significantly higher in barramundi fed with the Starch diet compared with the Protein diet (0.6 ± 0.1 vs. 0.4 ± 0.1 % d-1, respectively). Hepatic TAG-bound glycerol synthetic rates were much higher than other closely related fish such as seabass, but were not significantly different (Starch, 2.8 ± 0.3 vs. Protein, 3.4 ± 0.3 % d-1), highlighting the role of glycerol as a metabolic intermediary and high TAG-FA cycling in barramundi. Overall, dietary starch significantly increased hepatic TAG through increased lipogenesis. Compared with other fish, barramundi possess a unique mechanism to metabolise dietary carbohydrates, and may define ways to improve performance of advanced formulated feeds.
Identifying and tackling recrystallization is a critical factor in the reliable radiocarbon (14C) dating of carbonates, since exogenous carbon can be incorporated and thus mask the real age of the samples. Vermetids are among the most important bioindicators used for paleo sea-level reconstruction, and the accuracy of their chronology can significantly impact sea-level curves. Age differences larger than 1 14C kyr before and after acid etching, combined with X-ray diffraction (XRD) analysis that indicates a significant amount of calcite still remains in the shell, led us to apply the previously developed carbonate density separation protocol (CarDS). Using a solution of sodium polytungstate, with density of 2.80 g/cm3, we successfully separated different carbonate fractions for a set of 10 vermetid samples from the coast of Rio de Janeiro, southeast of Brazil. Each separation was verified by XRD analysis and the 14C concentrations of different fractions were compared. The results show that the calcite fraction in the studied vermetid samples varied from 12 to 63% and aragonite fraction ages are up to 2 14C kyr older than the raw samples, thus confirming the efficacy of CarDS in removing young carbonates and the importance of density separation to vermetids prior to accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) dating.
Vitamins play an essential role in broiler nutrition. They are fundamental for normal metabolic and physiological process, and their requirements for poultry are not fixed and can be affected by multiple factors. In contrast, mycotoxins are a challenging issue because they hinder performance and the immune system. Vitamin supplementation above minimum requirements would permit improvement in productive potential, health, bone and meat quality in a situation of mycotoxin challenge. The objective of this study was to determine the influence of optimum vitamin nutrition in diets contaminated with aflatoxin in broilers from 1 to 44 days of age. A total of 1800 Cobb 500 male chicks were randomized to 15 sets of eight treatment groups, each containing 15 birds using a 2 × 2 × 2 factorial design (commercial vitamin levels and high vitamin levels, two levels of aflatoxin – 0 and 0.5 ppm with binder levels of 0 and 10 000 mg/kg). The mash diets were corn and soybean meal based, formulated according to commercial practices. Feed intake, weight gain and feed conversion were analyzed for birds from 1 to 44 days of age. To determine carcass characteristics (carcass yield, breast yield and leg yield) and black bone syndrome, two birds were slaughtered from each group at 45 days. Other analyses included breast tenderness, water loss by dripping and malonaldehyde concentrations. The results demonstrated that broilers that were fed high levels of vitamins showed better weight gain, feed conversion, carcass yield and breast yield than broilers that were fed diets with commercial vitamin levels (P < 0.05); also, broilers that were fed diets containing 0.5 ppm aflatoxin had lower weight gain, carcass yield and breast yield (P < 0.05). The use of 10 000 mg/kg of binder improved (P < 0.05) feed conversion throughout the rearing period. We conclude that aflatoxin negatively affects performance and carcass yield; however, feeding optimum vitamin nutrition improved these performance traits.
Chagas disease (CD) is a neglected parasitic condition endemic in the Americas caused by Trypanosoma cruzi. Patients present an acute phase that may or not be symptomatic, followed by lifelong chronic stage, mostly indeterminate, or with cardiac and/or digestive progressive lesions. Benznidazole (BZ) and nifurtimox are the only drugs approved for treatment but not effective in the late chronic phase and many strains of the parasite are naturally resistant. New alternative therapy is required to address this serious public health issue. Repositioning and combination represent faster, and cheaper trial strategies encouraged for neglected diseases. The effect of imatinib (IMB), a tyrosine kinase inhibitor designed for use in neoplasias, was assessed in vitro on T. cruzi and mammalian host cells. In comparison with BZ, IMB was moderately active against different strains and forms of the parasite. The combination IMB + BZ in fixed-ratio proportions was additive. Novel 14 derivatives of IMB were screened and a 3,2-difluoro-2-phenylacetamide (3e) was as potent as BZ on T. cruzi but had low selectivity index. The results demonstrate the importance of phenotypic assays, encourage the improvement of IMB derivatives to reach selectivity and testify to the use of repurposing and combination in drug screening for CD.
Phenotypic differentiation among fish populations may be used for management of distinct stocks and helps in conserving biodiversity. We compared morphometric and meristic characters of the anchovy Anchoa januaria from shallow semi-closed bays between the south-eastern (Tropical, 23°S) and southern (Subtropical, 25°S) Brazilian coast. We hypothesized that differences between habitats and environmental conditions result in morphological divergence between conspecific populations. Fish size did not differ significantly between the two areas. Significant differences in the meristic and morphological characters were detected for individuals between the two areas, with specimens from the Subtropical region having significant larger head height, pectoral fin length and eye diameter compared with those from the Tropical region. Conversely, specimens from the Tropical region had significantly larger maxillary length, mouth length and body height than those from the Subtropical region. The number of rays for the dorsal and pectoral fins were higher for the specimens from the Subtropical region, whereas for the anal fin was higher for individuals from the Tropical region. Different morphological groups between the two regions were depicted by principal component analysis and discriminant function analysis, which suggest that morphological divergence is occurring. Local environmental influences and the lack of genetic interchange are likely to be the causes of such divergence. This is facilitated by the low tolerance of this species to marine waters that prevents connectivity between these stocks/populations.
During the 125th European Study Group with Industry held in Limassol, Cyprus, 5–9 December 2016, one of the participating companies, Engino.net Ltd, posed a very interesting challenge to the members of the study group. Engino.net Ltd is a Cypriot company, founded in 2004, that produces a series of toy sets – the Engino® toy sets – consisting of a number of building blocks, which can be assembled by pupils to compose toy models. Depending on the contents of a particular toy set, the company has developed a number of models that can be built utilizing the blocks present in the set; however, the production of a step-by-step assembly manual for each model could only be done manually. The goal of the challenge posed by the company was to implement a procedure to automatically generate the assembly instructions for a given toy. In the present paper, we propose a graph-theoretic approach to model the problem and provide a series of results to solve it by employing modified versions of well-established algorithms in graph theory. An algorithmic procedure to obtain a hierarchical, physically feasible decomposition of a given toy model, from which a series of step-by-step assembly instructions can be recovered, is proposed.
Cellular oxidative damage is thought to be one of the key mechanisms underlying age-related cognitive impairment in dogs. Several nutritional interventions to limit cognitive decline are reported in the literature. To our knowledge, the association of grape and blueberry extracts has never been tested in aged dogs. Our objective was to evaluate the effect of a polyphenol-rich extract from grape and blueberry (PEGB) on oxidative status and cognitive performances in aged dogs. A total of thirty-five beagle dogs (aged 8·0–14·5 years) were fed a basal diet with PEGB at either 0 parts per million (ppm) (n 11; control), 240 ppm (n 12; PEGB1) or 480 ppm (n 12; PEGB2) for 75 d. To investigate the effects of PEGB supplementation on cognition and oxidative status, a delayed non-matching to position (DNMP) test and RT-PCR on genes involved in oxidative stress were evaluated. The dogs fed PEGB1 showed a higher superoxide dismutase mRNA expression compared with dogs fed PEGB2 (P = 0·042) and with the control group (P = 0·014). Moreover, the dogs fed PEGB2 showed higher nuclear factor-like 2 (Nrf2) mRNA expression compared with the dogs fed PEGB1 (P = 0·027). Concerning the DNMP test, the proportion of dogs showing cognitive improvements relative to their baseline level was significantly higher in dogs fed the PEGB, regardless of the dosage, than in dogs receiving no supplementation (P = 0·030). The results obtained in the DNMP test suggested a potential benefit of the PEGB on working memory. However, this hypothesis should be further investigated to confirm this cognitive effect.
Objectives: This study examined whether children with distinct brain disorders show different profiles of strengths and weaknesses in executive functions, and differ from children without brain disorder. Methods: Participants were children with traumatic brain injury (N=82; 8–13 years of age), arterial ischemic stroke (N=36; 6–16 years of age), and brain tumor (N=74; 9–18 years of age), each with a corresponding matched comparison group consisting of children with orthopedic injury (N=61), asthma (N=15), and classmates without medical illness (N=68), respectively. Shifting, inhibition, and working memory were assessed, respectively, using three Test of Everyday Attention: Children’s Version (TEA-Ch) subtests: Creature Counting, Walk-Don’t-Walk, and Code Transmission. Comparison groups did not differ in TEA-Ch performance and were merged into a single control group. Profile analysis was used to examine group differences in TEA-Ch subtest scaled scores after controlling for maternal education and age. Results: As a whole, children with brain disorder performed more poorly than controls on measures of executive function. Relative to controls, the three brain injury groups showed significantly different profiles of executive functions. Importantly, post hoc tests revealed that performance on TEA-Ch subtests differed among the brain disorder groups. Conclusions: Results suggest that different childhood brain disorders result in distinct patterns of executive function deficits that differ from children without brain disorder. Implications for clinical practice and future research are discussed. (JINS, 2017, 23, 529–538)
The cognitive emotions regulation questionnaire (CERQ) is a 36-item questionnaire to measures specific cognitive emotion regulation strategies used in response to the experience of threatening or stressful life events. The Portuguese version of CERQ proved to be a reliable and valid measure to evaluate eight dimensions: Positive reappraisal and planning, positive refocusing, rumination, blaming others, putting into perspective and self-blame.
To confirm the dimensional structure of a Portuguese short version of the CERQ using Confirmatory Factor Analysis (CFA).
Items selection was based on the previous results of the exploratory factor analysis of the 36-items version. Items presenting the highest loading (≥ 70) in their respective factor were selected. A preliminary short version composed of 22 items were answered by a sample of 480 university students (81.9% females), with a mean age of 19.49 years (SD = 2.047; range = 17–30). CFA (using Mplus software) was used to test if the eight dimensions’ model suggested by prior exploratory factor analyses fitted the data.
The eight dimensions’ model has a good fit (χ2 = 424.015, P < .01; RMSEA = 0.056, 90%CI = 0.049–0.063; CFI = 0.930; TLI = 0.910; SRMR = 0.051). Although composed of fewer numbers of items, all subscales presented good reliability (Cronbach alpha< 70).
The CERQ-22 is a reliable and valid measure to evaluate cognitive emotion regulation strategies in young adults. Being a shorter version it is particularly useful for multivariate and prospective studies. In the near future we will test this structure in a clinical sample.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
H&F Multidimensional Perfectionism Scale is a widely used measure of perfectionism developed to measure Self-oriented perfectionism (SOP), Socially-prescribed perfectionism (SPP) and Other-oriented perfectionism (OOP) dimensions. The original scale comprises 45-likert items. We have previously developed a short version of The H&F-MPS, with 13 items, showing adequate validity in a sample of university students, using principal component analyses method with factors varimax rotation.
To examine the factor structure of the H&F-MPS13 with confirmatory factor analysis (CFA), using a different sample of Portuguese university students.
The sample comprises 245 university students (68.9% females), with a mean age of 20.95 years (SD= 2.19; range= 17–33) who completed the H&F-MPS13. CFA was used to test the model suggested by prior exploratory factor analyses of H&F-MPS13.
After correlated errors, we obtained a good fit for the second-order factor (X2/d= 2.577; CFI= 0.928; GFI= 0.915, RMSEA= 0.080; P[rmsea ≤ 0.05] = 0.001). The H&F-MPS13 showed acceptable internal consistency (α= 0.77) and the three dimensions presented Cronbach's alphas ranging between acceptable and good (α OOP = 0.67; SPP = 0.73; SOP = 0.89).
The H&F-MPS13 obtained through CFA is a reliable and valid measure to assess perfectionism in Portuguese university students.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
In the near future, ruminants may be forced to consume low-quality water since potable drinking water will become increasingly scarce in some regions of the world. A completely randomized design trial was completed to evaluate the effect of increasing concentrations of total dissolved salts (TDS) (640, 3187, 5740 and 8326 mg TDS/l) in drinking water on the performance, diet digestibility, microbial protein synthesis, nitrogen (N) and water balance using 24 Red Sindhi heifers (200 ± 5 kg) that were fed Buffel (Cenchrus ciliaris) grass hay and concentrate in a ratio of 50 : 50. After a 15-day diet adaptation period, the digestion study was completed over a 5-day period and the performance trial was completed over a 56-day period. Dry matter intake, average daily gain, feed:gain, intake and digestibility of most feed components were unaffected by the concentration of salt in the water. However, intake and digestibility of neutral detergent fibre declined linearly as TDS inclusion rate increased. Further, the inclusion of TDS resulted in a linear increase in the intake of drinking water and total (food plus drinking) water intake. Similarly, TDS inclusion levels resulted in a linear increase in total water excretion, with urine being the major route of water excretion. In contrast, increasing concentrations of TDS caused a linear decrease in creatinine and allantoin excretions. Finally, increasing the inclusion rate of TDS resulted in a linear decrease in N retention and a linear increase in urinary N excretion, which may pose a considerable challenge for farmers with respect to the reduction and management of nutrient losses.
In the present investigation, nanostructured ceramic HfN coatings were deposited onto silicon (100) wafer by magnetron sputtering DC method, from a metallic Hf target. The deposition process followed by a similar pattern as the multilayer film deposition, using cycles with the nitrogen gas turned on for 90 s and turned off for 15 s; four sets of samples were obtained using 5, 10, 15 and 20 cycles. The X ray diffraction (XRD) identified the presence of two different cubic crystalline phases of HfN, corroborated by Rietveld analysis. The Vickers hardness test showed that the hardness values increases with more cycles, due to a higher compressive stress evaluated by Stoney formula. All samples were investigated with no visible fracture until 10 grf for the 5 cycles sample; however, no fractures were visible at all for the 15 and 20 cycle samples for that given load, instead fractures started to appear at 25grf for the 10 and 15 cycles coating. Eventually it is distinguished that, the thickness and morphology of the coatings were measured by field emission scanning electron microscopy FE-SEM. As well as, the thickness increased from 0.4 µm to almost 1.33 µm as the number of cycles also increased, where we can observe the formation of columnar growth, moreover it is possible to distinguish the formation of two different clusters which might be related to different phases.
The FMPS is a 35-item self-report questionnaire to measure perfectionism. It evaluates: concern over mistakes/CM, doubts about actions/DA, parental criticism/PC and expectations/PE, personal standards/PS and organization/O.
To develop a shortened version of FMPS and study its internal consistency, the construct, concurrent and divergent validity.
One hundred and ninety-two university students (78.1% females), aged 19.74 years (sd = 2.10) completed the Portuguese versions of the: FMPS, Hewitt and Flett MPS/H&FMPS, Life Orientation Test Revised/LOT-R, State-Trait Anxiety Inventory/STAI, and Profile of Mood States/POMS.
Correlations between each item and corrected FMPS total scores/corrected total subscales scores were ≥ 0.20 for the items 13, 15, 25, 31, 35 and 10, 2, 25, and 26, respectively. The internal consistency of FMPS was high (α: .857) with 32 items contributing for this consistency (exceptions: 13, 25 and 31). The principal component analysis of the 35 items with factors varimax rotation was performed. The three items with higher loading in each factor that also contributed to the FMPS reliability were selected for the FMPS shortened version (FMPS-18). The principal component analysis of the 18 items with factors varimax rotation showed that six factors explained 74.6% of FMPS-18 total variance. These factors revealed adequate internal consistency (α: O = 0.740; PC = 0.859; PE = 0.847; PS = 0.726; CM = 0.740; DA = 0.832; total = 0.768). Convergent correlations between FMPS and the matched FMPS-18 scores were 0.839 to 0.971 (all P < .01). Correlations of the FMPS-18 and FMPS with H&F-MPS, STAI, LOT-R and NA/PA scores were of similar significance and valence.
FMPS-18 is a brief, reliable and valid instrument to measure perfectionism.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
The goal of the present study was to characterize the growth of body parts and composition of the growing empty body to infer how these aspects relate to the long-term growth of goat wethers from dairy breeds. Animals were slaughtered at several ages from birth to maturity (≅900 days old). All body parts were weighed and sampled to determine chemical constituent dry matter, crude protein, crude fat, ash and specific energy. The monomolecular (Brody), Gompertz, and Richards models, a biphasic model formed by the combined Brody and Gompertz functions, and a simple linear model were fitted to the growth profiles with different variance functions and were all evaluated using likelihood-information criteria. The effect of breed (genotype) was accounted for in all models but the resulting models were not more likely than the models without the breed effect. Remarkable differences were observed regarding inflection points, growth rates and trends for all body parts and chemical constituents of the body. The biphasic model did not supplant the monomolecular, Gompertz, Richards or the linear model in terms of likelihood-information criteria. Therefore, body parts and chemical constituents of the empty body presented monomolecular, sigmoid and linear time-trends. The growth profiles of fat, protein and energy of the empty body did not scale isometrically with the empty body proper. In addition, the variance was heteroscedastic along the time scale and was better represented by both an exponential variance over time or by a power function of the mean.
To describe the epidemiology of infections related to the use of implantable central venous access devices (CVADs) in cancer patients and to evaluate measures aimed at reducing the rates of such infections.
Prospective cohort study.
Referral hospital for cancer in São Paulo, Brazil.
We prospectively evaluated all implantable CVADs employed between January 2009 and December 2011. Inpatients and outpatients were followed until catheter removal, transfer to another facility, or death.
Outcome measures were bloodstream infection and pocket infection. We also evaluated the effects that the creation of a multidisciplinary team for CVAD care, avoiding in-hospital implantation of CVADs, and limiting CVAD insertion in neutropenic patients have on the rates of such infections.
During the study period, 966 CVADs (mostly venous ports) were implanted in 933 patients, for a combined total of 243,792 catheter-days. We identified 184 episodes of infection: 154 (84%) were bloodstream infections, 21 (11%) were pocket infections, and 9 (5%) were surgical site infections. During the study period, the rate of CVAD-related infection dropped from 2.2 to 0.24 per 1,000 catheter-days (P < .001). Multivariate analysis revealed that relevant risk factors for such infection include surgical reintervention, implantation in a neutropenic patient, in-hospital implantation, use of a cuffed catheter, and nonchemotherapy indication for catheter use.
Establishing a multidisciplinary team specifically focused on CVAD care, together with systematic reporting of infections, appears to reduce the rates of infection related to the use of these devices.
To compare Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL) findings for a large Brazilian general population sample with those for US children considering: (a) mean problem item ratings; (b) fit of the US-derived CBCL 8-syndrome model; (c) scale internal consistency measured by Cronbach's alphas; (d) effects of society, age, gender on CBCL problem scores; and (e) ability to discriminate referred from non-referred children.
Parents of 1228 non-referred 6-to-11-year-olds from three different regions of Brazil and 247 referred 6-to-11-year-olds from one clinic rated their children's behavioural and emotional problems using the CBCL/6–18.
Results for mean item ratings and scale internal consistencies were very similar to those found in the US and in Uruguay. Confirmatory factor analysis indicated that Brazilian data showed the best fit to the US 8-syndrome model of all countries studied to date. Gender patterns were comparable to those reported in other societies, but mean problem scores for non-referred Brazilian children were higher than those for US children. Therefore, the CBCL discriminated less well between non-referred and referred children in Brazil than in the US.
Overall, our findings replicated those reported in international comparisons of CBCL scores for 31 societies, thereby providing support for the multicultural robustness of the CBCL in Brazil.
In order to estimate influenza-associated excess mortality in southern Brazil, we applied Serfling regression models to monthly mortality data from 1980 to 2008 for pneumonia/influenza- and respiratory/circulatory-coded deaths for all ages and for those aged ⩾60 years. According to viral data, 73·5% of influenza viruses were detected between April and August in southern Brazil. There was no clear influenza season for northern Brazil. In southern Brazil, influenza-associated excess mortality was 1·4/100 000 for all ages and 9·2/100 000 person-years for persons aged ⩾60 years using underlying pneumonia/influenza-coded deaths and 10·0/100 000 for all ages and 86·6/100 000 person-years for persons aged ⩾60 years using underlying respiratory/circulatory-coded deaths. Influenza-associated excess mortality rates for southern Brazil are similar to those published for other countries. Our data support the need for continued influenza surveillance to guide vaccination campaigns to age groups most affected by this virus in Brazil.