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The objective was to compare the performance of the updated Charlson comorbidity index (uCCI) and classical CCI (cCCI) in predicting 30-day mortality in patients with Staphylococcus aureus bacteraemia (SAB). All cases of SAB in patients aged ⩾14 years identified at the Microbiology Unit were included prospectively and followed. Comorbidity was evaluated using the cCCI and uCCI. Relevant variables associated with SAB-related mortality, along with cCCI or uCCI scores, were entered into multivariate logistic regression models. Global model fit, model calibration and predictive validity of each model were evaluated and compared. In total, 257 episodes of SAB in 239 patients were included (mean age 74 years; 65% were male). The mean cCCI and uCCI scores were 3.6 (standard deviation, 2.4) and 2.9 (2.3), respectively; 161 (63%) cases had cCCI score ⩾3 and 89 (35%) cases had uCCI score ⩾4. Sixty-five (25%) patients died within 30 days. The cCCI score was not related to mortality in any model, but uCCI score ⩾4 was an independent factor of 30-day mortality (odds ratio, 1.98; 95% confidence interval, 1.05–3.74). The uCCI is a more up-to-date, refined and parsimonious prognostic mortality score than the cCCI; it may thus serve better than the latter in the identification of patients with SAB with worse prognoses.
The in vitro nematicidal effect of Chenopodium ambrosioides and Castela tortuosa n-hexane extracts (E-Cham and E-Cato, respectively) on Haemonchus contortus infective larvae (L3) and the anthelmintic effect of these extracts against the pre-adult stage of the parasite in gerbils were evaluated using both individual and combined extracts. The in vitro confrontation between larvae and extracts was performed in 24-well micro-titration plates. The results were considered 24 and 72 h post confrontation. The in vivo nematicidal effect was examined using gerbils as a study model. The extracts from the two assessed plants were obtained through maceration using n-hexane as an organic agent. Gerbils artificially infected with H. contortus L3 were treated intraperitoneally with the corresponding extract either individually or in combination. The results showed that the highest individual lethal in vitro effect (96.3%) was obtained with the E-Cham extract at 72 h post confrontation at 40 mg/ml, followed by E-Cato (78.9%) at 20 mg/ml after 72 h. The highest combined effect (98.7%) was obtained after 72 h at 40 mg/ml. The in vivo assay showed that the individual administration of the E-Cato and E-Cham extracts reduced the parasitic burden in gerbils by 27.1% and 45.8%, respectively. Furthermore, the anthelmintic efficacy increased to 57.3% when both extracts were administered in combination. The results of the present study show an important combined nematicidal effect of the two plant extracts assessed against L3 in gerbils.
Post-Asymptotic giant branch (post-ABG) sources with high-velocity spectral features of H2O maser emission detected toward their circumstellar envelopes (CSEs) are known as Water Fountain (WF) nebulae. These are low- or intermediate-mass Galactic stellar sources that are undergoing the late stages of an intense mass-loss process. The velocity and the spatial distribution of the H2O maser spectral features can provide information about the kinematics of the molecular gas component of their CSEs. Hence, observational studies toward WF nebulae could help to better understand the formation of the asymmetric structures (hundred to thousand AUs) commonly seen toward Planetary nebulae (PNe). Here we present preliminary results of observations done toward the WF IRAS 15445-5449 using the Australia Telescope Compact Array (ATCA) and the Very Large Telescope (SINFONI/VLT). Assuming that the pumping of the H2O maser transitions is a consequence of shocks between different velocity winds, the spatial distribution of the emission shed light on the scales of the regions affected by the propagation of the shock-fronts.
Effective tools for male contraception are important in the control of reproduction in animal populations. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effects of active immunization against gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) on male reproductive function assessing testicular morphological changes and serum-gonadotropin levels in pre-pubertal rabbits, guinea pigs and ram lambs. An anti-GnRH vaccine was developed by linking a GnRH-homologous molecule to a tetanus clostridial toxoid (Al(OH)3 coadjuvant). After vaccination protocols testicular morphometry, histopathological alterations and endocrine responses (FSH, LH, testosterone and cortisol serum levels) were evaluated. Testicular volume was significantly reduced in vaccinated animals with respect to the control group in rabbits, guinea pigs and ram lambs (P<0.05 to P<0.001). The anti-GnRH vaccine generated a reduction in testicular volume of 15-, 27- and 11-fold, respectively. Tubule diameters decreased in the vaccinated group with respect to the control ~2.0-, 1.2- and 3.5-fold, respectively (P<0.001). Tubule, intertubular and lumen volumes significantly decreased in vaccinated rabbits (P<0.05), guinea pigs and ram lambs (P<0.01). Vaccinated animals of the three species showed significant reductions in spermatogonial numbers (10- to 40-fold; P<0.01). Sperm was absent in all seminiferous tubules of all rabbits, and most individuals of guinea pigs (80%) and ram lambs (60%). No significant differences were observed between vaccinated and control groups regarding FSH and LH during the experiments in the three experimental species/models used. Testosterone, however, was only significantly lower (~22-fold, P<0.01) in vaccinated rabbits. In conclusion, the present study demonstrated that pre-pubertal active immunization against GnRH leads to endocrine disruption and marked differences on testicular morphometry, development and activity among lagomorphs, hystricomorphs and ovine species with species-specific sensitivity regarding the anti-GnRH immune response.
To determine whether demographic characteristics or balance examination findings can predict the adherence of older people with instability to a vestibular rehabilitation programme.
A prospective case–control study was conducted of 120 patients aged 65 years or more (mean age, 77.3 ± 6.33 years). Two groups were classified according to patients’ adherence with the follow-up post-rehabilitation protocol. Analysed variables included: age, sex, body mass index, Timed Up and Go test findings, computerised dynamic posturography, Dizziness Handicap Inventory scores and Short Falls Efficacy Scale – International questionnaire results, number of falls, and type of vestibular rehabilitation.
Two groups were established: adherents (99 individuals) and non-adherents (21 individuals). There were differences between the groups regarding: sex (female-to-male ratio of 4.8:1 in adherents and 1.63:1 in non-adherents), age (higher in non-adherents) and voluntary movement posturographic test results (non-adherents had poorer scores).
The patients most likely to abandon a vestibular rehabilitation programme are very elderly males with low scores for centre of gravity balancing and limits of stability.
This study aimed to examine the association between vitamin B6, folate and vitamin B12 biomarkers and plasma fatty acids in European adolescents. A subsample from the Healthy Lifestyle in Europe by Nutrition in Adolescence study with valid data on B-vitamins and fatty acid blood parameters, and all the other covariates used in the analyses such as BMI, Diet Quality Index, education of the mother and physical activity assessed by a questionnaire, was selected resulting in 674 cases (43 % males). B-vitamin biomarkers were measured by chromatography and immunoassay and fatty acids by enzymatic analyses. Linear mixed models elucidated the association between B-vitamins and fatty acid blood parameters (changes in fatty acid profiles according to change in 10 units of vitamin B biomarkers). DHA, EPA) and n-3 fatty acids showed positive associations with B-vitamin biomarkers, mainly with those corresponding to folate and vitamin B12. Contrarily, negative associations were found with n-6:n-3 ratio, trans-fatty acids and oleic:stearic ratio. With total homocysteine (tHcy), all the associations found with these parameters were opposite (for instance, an increase of 10 nmol/l in red blood cell folate or holotranscobalamin in females produces an increase of 15·85 µmol/l of EPA (P value <0·01), whereas an increase of 10 nmol/l of tHcy in males produces a decrease of 2·06 µmol/l of DHA (P value <0·05). Positive associations between B-vitamins and specific fatty acids might suggest underlying mechanisms between B-vitamins and CVD and it is worth the attention of public health policies.
We present a very preliminary and simplified analysis designed to measure photospheric magnetic fields in late-type stars, using the FeI 5247.06 Å and 5250.22 Å lines. We show how the use of the equivalent widths of the lines and differences in their depth can give a rapid estimation of the magnetic flux.
The pseudo-Frobenius numbers of a numerical semigroup are those gaps of the numerical semigroup that are maximal for the partial order induced by the semigroup. We present a procedure to detect if a given set of integers is the set of pseudo-Frobenius numbers of a numerical semigroup and, if so, to compute the set of all numerical semigroups having this set as set of pseudo-Frobenius numbers.
The objective of this study was to assess the effectiveness of a catheter-related bloodstream infection (CR BSI) reduction programme and healthcare workers' compliance with recommendations. A 3-year surveillance programme of CR BSIs in all hospital settings was implemented. As part of the programme, there was a direct observation of insertion and maintenance of central venous catheters (CVCs) to determine performance. A total of 38 education courses were held over the study period and feedback reports with the results of surveillance and recommendations were delivered to healthcare workers every 6 months. A total of 6722 short-term CVCs were inserted in 4982 patients for 58 763 catheter-days. Improvements of compliance with hand hygiene was verified at the insertion (87·1–100%, P < 0·001) and maintenance (51·1–72·1%, P = 0·029) of CVCs; and the use of chlorhexidine for skin disinfection was implemented at insertion (35·7–65·4%, P < 0·001) and maintenance (33·3–45·9%, P < 0·197) of CVCs. There were 266 CR BSI incidents recorded with an annual incidence density of 5·75/1000 catheter-days in the first year, 4·38 in the second year [rate ratio (RR) 0·76, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0·57–1·01] and 3·46 in the third year (RR 0·60, 95% CI 0·44–0·81). The education programme clearly improved compliance with recommendations for CVC handling, and was effective in reducing the burden of CR BSIs.
Recent research has shown an association between unemployment and suicide, but the mediating factors in this relationship are still unknown. In this study, we investigated the effect of unemployment and economic recession on suicide rates in the Spanish region of Galicia between 1975 and 2012
We analysed age-standardised suicide rates in men and women and in four age groups: less than 25 years, 25–45 years, 45–65 years and more than 65 years and performed a joinpoint analysis to determine trend changes throughout 1975–2012 period. Also we analysed the association between suicide, recession and unemployment by means of a temporal trend model with a Generalised Additive Model.
Suicide rates increased from 145 suicides in 1975 to a high in 1993, with 377 deaths by suicide, representing 1.38% of all causes of death, and thereafter they tend to decrease to 335 suicides in 2012. Joinpoint analyses revealed that suicide rates changed differently across sex and age groups. For men, the annual percentage of change (APC) between 1975 and 1988 (CI 95% 1986–1994) was 5.45 (CI 95% = 3.5, −7.2) but from 1988 the APC became negative [−0.66 (CI 95% = −1.3, −0.1)]. For women, APC between 1974 and 1990 (CI 95% 1986–1992) was 4.86 (CI 95% = 3.2, −6.4) and −1.46 subsequently (CI 95% = −2.2, −0.5). Women aged 24 years or less showed stable suicide rates while men from 45–65 years showed two incidence peaks. When we studied the independent correlation between unemployment, recession and suicide, we found a significant association between unemployment and suicide, but not between recession and suicide for both sexes together and for men while for women there was no significant correlation between suicide and unemployment or recession. Finally, when we studied the effect of the interaction between unemployment and recession on suicide we found economic recession and unemployment interacted with regards to suicide rates (F = 5.902; df = 4.167; p = 0.00098) and after adjusting by sex, the effect was confirmed among men (F = 4.827; df = 2.823; p = 0.0087), but not among women (F = 0.001; df = 1.000; p = 0.979).
Although suicide rates in Galicia are gradually decreasing in the last decades, there are important sex and age differences. Unemployment was related with suicide during economic recession periods according to our results.
Poly(acrylamide-co-2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate), hydrogel microparticles were prepared by free radical copolymerization of acrylamide (AAm) and 2-hydroxyethyl methacrylate (2-HEMA) using an inverse emulsion polymerization technique, employing ethylene glycol dimethylacrylate (EGDMA) as crosslinker in the presence of w/o emulsifiers span-80 and span-85 (sorbitol mono-oleate) above the lower critical solution temperature. Water absorption capacity and characteristics of the hydrogel microparticles were analyzed by Optical Microscopy (OM), Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) and Thermogravimetric Analysis (TGA). Thus, microparticles were submitted to a gravimetric study on their ability to absorb and to retain distilled water at 25°C. One gram of microparticles absorbed at least 15 g of water. By varying the relative ratio between the continuous phase (hexane and emulsifiers) and the dispersed phase (monomers, initiator and crosslinker), non-agglomerated dispersed particles with nearly spherical shape were obtained having a narrow size distribution in the range from 10 to 20 µm. At a constant value of the emulsifier, and as a result of increasing the stirring rate, a particle size reduction was observed from 13 to 7 µm. The PAAm and PHEMA structures of synthesized hydrogel were confirmed using FTIR analysis. Additionally, through thermal analysis the P(AAm-HEMA) hydrogel showed an increase of water retention and thermal stability due to PAAm addition.
Undoped layers of GaN grown by MOVPE on sapphire substrates have been characterized by photoluminescence, photocapacitance and photoinduced current transient spectroscopy (PICTS). Photocapacitance reveals in all samples two specific signatures at photon energies of 1 eV and 2.5 eV. The photocapacitance decrease observed at 1 eV seems to be due to an electron capture process from the valence band, whereas the capacitance increase at 2.5 eV is related to an electron emission process. The fact that the capacitance step at 1 eV is only seen after photoionization at energies above 2.5 eV, and the observed correlation between its amplitude and the photoluminescence intensity of the “yellow band”, lead us to conclude that both transitions are linked to the same trap, which is also suggested to be responsible for the yellow band. The position of this trap, at 2.5 eV below the conduction band, is confirmed by PICTS measurements, that show a hole thermal emission activation energy of 0.9 eV at 350 K.
The in vitro leishmanicidal activity and cytotoxicity of pyrazole-containing macrocyclic polyamines 1–4 was assayed on Leishmania infantum and Leishmania braziliensis species. Compounds 1–4 were more active and less toxic than glucantime and both infection rates and ultrastructural alterations confirmed that 1 and 2 were highly leishmanicidal and induced extensive parasite cell damage. Modifications in the excretion products of parasites treated with 1–3 were also consistent with substantial cytoplasm alterations. Compound 2 was highlighted as a potent inhibitor of Fe-SOD in both species, whereas its effect on human CuZn-SOD was poor. Molecular modelling suggested that 2 could deactivate Fe-SOD due to a sterically favoured enhanced ability to interact with the H-bonding net that supports the enzyme`s antioxidant features.
Because of the natural adaptation of Mexican sheep, the aim of the present study was to identify the presence or absence of gastrointestinal parasitic nematodes (GIN) resistant to benzimidazole (BZ) in both Chiapas and Pelibuey sheep breeds on local farms. Both male and female GIN-infected grazing sheep of the two breeds were selected. Sheep faecal samples were collected to obtain infective larvae (L3). This evolving stage of the parasite was used for taxonomic identification of the genus, based on its morphological characteristics. BZ anthelmintic resistance was evaluated using a nematode–compound in vitro interaction bioassay and the allele-specific polymerase chain reaction technique to detect mutations of residues 198 and 200 on isotype 1 of the β-tubulin gene. Three BZ-based compounds (febendazole (FBZ), tiabendazole (TBZ) and albendazole (ABZ)) at concentrations of 1, 0.5, 0.25, 0.125, 0.062 and 0.03 mg/ml were used to estimate the anthelmintic efficacy and lethal dose (LD50, LD90 and LD99) of the drugs. Two parasitic nematodes, Haemonchus and Teladorsagia, were identified in both isolates. Also, the proportions of anthelmintic resistance identified in GIN of the two sheep breeds were 68% in isolates from the Chiapas breed and 71.8% in the Pelibuey breed. The specific lethal activity obtained with FBZ was higher than 90%. However, TBZ and ABZ showed a lethal activity lower than 50%. High variability in the discriminating dose values was found among the BZ drugs. For example, FBZ LD ranged from 0.01 to 1.20 mg/ml; on the other hand, TBZ and ABZ required a dose ranging from 0.178 to 759 mg/ml. In addition, amino acid changes of Phe (TTC) to Tyr (TAC) at codon 200 of the β-tubulin gene, showing resistance to BZ, and no changes at codon 198 Glu (GAA) to Ala (GCA) were observed for both isolates. These results confirmed the presence of a genetic mutation associated with BZ in both Chiapas and Pelibuey nematode isolates.
We present the results from an optical monitoring campaign aimed at studying the
afterglow properties of the short GRB 100816A. We implemented a new way of processing the
Swift-BAT data, and based on it we reclassified this burst as short,
discarding the initial classification as long. Observations were carried out mainly with
the GTC Telescope within the four following days after the burst to investigate the
optical photometry of its afterglow, and a year later to localize the host. We completed
the optical imaging with the 1.23 m and 3.5 m CAHA Telescopes. We built and fitted the
nIR-optical SED for the characterization of the host. The best fit of the SED
(χ2/d.o.f. = 1.656) obtained for assumed values of a solar
metallicity, and an extinction of AV = 0.2mag is obtained for
a starburst galaxy with a dominant stellar population aging about 360 Myr.
GRB 110715A had a bright afterglow that was obscured in the optical by a high Galactic extinction. We discovered the submillimeter counterpart with APEX and followed it in radio with ATCA for over 2 months. Additional submm observations were performed with ALMA as a test of the ToO procedures during commissioning, becoming the first GRB afterglow to be detected by the observatory. UV, optical and NIR observations were performed with Swift/UVOT and 2.2 m/GROND in La Silla and X-ray data were obtained by Swift/XRT. The dataset is complemented with spectroscopic data from the VLT/X-shooter spectrograph. The absorption features present in the intermediate resolution optical/nIR spectra reveal a redshift of 0.8224 and a host galaxy environment with low ionization. We fit in the host galaxy absorption features two velocity components separated by 30 km/s, implying a host galaxy with low dynamical activity.
Zirconia nanopowders doped with different concentrations of Eu were prepared by the solgel method followed by a thermal treatment at 500°C. Morphological and crystallographic characteristics were studied by scanning electron microscopy, X-Ray diffraction and UV spectroscopoy. Results showed a modification of the size of nanopowder particles when the concentration of Eu is increased from 0.0 to 4.0 wt%. Also, at lower concentration of Eu the tetragonal ZrO2 is the most abundant phase while high concentrations of Eu lead to the formation of the monoclinic phase. The UV spectroscopy of ZrO2 samples shows two main absorption peaks at 228 and 214 nm. The novel characteristics of the ZrO2 nanopowders doped with Eu allow us to propose them for use as solar UV radiation detectors.
An efficient synthetic route for the synthesis of carcerands derived from tetramethylchlorocavitands and its tetraesters derivative were synthesized. A large-scale preparation was achieved in good yield. These carcerands are in bridging unit between oxygen atoms, i.e. contains a 3,5 dihydroxybencyl alcohol units. 1H, and 13C NMR in solution, FTIR, UV-vis spectroscopy, MS-FAB+ spectrometry and elemental analysis confirmed the structure of this carcerands.
The different incidence rates of, and risk factors for, depression in different countries argue for the need to have a specific risk algorithm for each country or a supranational risk algorithm. We aimed to develop and validate a predictD-Spain risk algorithm (PSRA) for the onset of major depression and to compare the performance of the PSRA with the predictD-Europe risk algorithm (PERA) in Spanish primary care.
A prospective cohort study with evaluations at baseline, 6 and 12 months. We measured 39 known risk factors and used multi-level logistic regression and inverse probability weighting to build the PSRA. In Spain (4574), Chile (2133) and another five European countries (5184), 11 891 non-depressed adult primary care attendees formed our at-risk population. The main outcome was DSM-IV major depression (CIDI).
Six variables were patient characteristics or past events (sex, age, sex×age interaction, education, physical child abuse, and lifetime depression) and six were current status [Short Form 12 (SF-12) physical score, SF-12 mental score, dissatisfaction with unpaid work, number of serious problems in very close persons, dissatisfaction with living together at home, and taking medication for stress, anxiety or depression]. The C-index of the PSRA was 0.82 [95% confidence interval (CI) 0.79–0.84]. The Integrated Discrimination Improvement (IDI) was 0.0558 [standard error (s.e.)=0.0071, Zexp=7.88, p<0.0001] mainly due to the increase in sensitivity. Both the IDI and calibration plots showed that the PSRA functioned better than the PERA in Spain.
The PSRA included new variables and afforded an improved performance over the PERA for predicting the onset of major depression in Spain. However, the PERA is still the best option in other European countries.
We have recently developed a method to perform Density Functional Theory calculations in systems with a very large number of atoms, which is based on the use of numerical atomic orbitals as basis sets. The method incorporates Order-N techniques both in the calculation of the Kohn-Sham hamiltonian matrix elements and in the solution of the wave functions, which make the CPU time and memory to scale linearly with the number of atoms, allowing calculations in very large system. In this work, we present results on several test systems to show that the approach and the basis sets used with our method are able to provide an accuracy similar to that of other standard DFT techniques.