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Modern lifestyle increases the prevalence of obesity and its co-morbidities in the young population. High-salt (HS) diets are associated with hypertension and cardiac remodelling. The present study evaluated the potential effects of cardiometabolic programming induced by HS intake during puberty in lean and obese rats. Additionally, we investigated whether HS could exacerbate the impairment of cardiovascular parameters in adult life due to postnatal early overnutrition (PO). At postnatal day 3 (PN3), twenty-four litters of Wistar rats were divided into two groups: normal litter (NL, nine pups/dam) and small litter (SL, three pups/dam) throughout the lactation period; weaning was at PN21. At PN30, the pups were subdivided into two more groups: NL plus HS (NLHS) and SL plus HS (SLHS). HS intake was from PN30 until PN60. Cardiovascular parameters were evaluated at PN120. SL rats became overweight at adulthood due to persistent hyperphagia; however, HS exposure during puberty reduced the weight gain and food intake of NLHS and SLHS. Both HS and obesity raised the blood pressure, impaired baro- and chemoreflex sensitivity and induced cardiac remodelling but no worsening was observed in the association of these factors, except a little reduction in the angiotensin type-2 receptor in the hearts from SLHS animals. Our results suggest that the response of newborn offspring to PO and juveniles to a HS diet leads to significant changes in cardiovascular parameters in adult rats. This damage may be accompanied by impairment of both angiotensin signalling and antioxidant defence in the heart.
The bovine appeasing substance (BAS) is expected to have calming effects in cattle experiencing stressful situations. Therefore, this study investigated the impacts of BAS administration during two of the most stressful events within beef production systems: weaning and feedlot entry. In experiment 1, 186 Bos indicus-influenced calves (73 heifers, 113 bulls) were weaned at 211 ± 1 days of age (day 0). At weaning, calves were ranked by sex and BW, and assigned to receive BAS (Nutricorp, Araras, SP, Brazil; n = 94) or water (CON; n = 92). Treatments (5 ml) were topically applied to the nuchal skin area of each animal. Calf BW was recorded and samples of blood and tail-switch hair were collected on days 0, 15 and 45. Calves that received BAS had greater (P < 0.01) BW gain from day 0 to 15 compared with CON. Overall BW gain (days 0 to 45) and BW on days 15 and 45 were also greater (P ≤ 0.03) in BAS v. CON. Plasma haptoglobin concentration was less (P < 0.01) in BAS v. CON on day 15, whereas cortisol concentrations in plasma and tail-switch hair did not differ between treatments (P ≥ 0.13). In experiment 2, 140 B. indicus-influenced bulls (∼27 months of age) from 2 different pasture-based systems (70 bulls/origin) were transported to a commercial feedlot (≤ 200-km transport; day -1). On day 0, bulls were ranked by source and BW, and assigned to receive BAS (n = 70) or CON (n = 70) and the same sampling procedures as in experiment 1. Bulls receiving BAS had greater (P = 0.04) BW gain from day 0 to 15, but less (P < 0.01) BW gain from day 15 to 45 compared to CON. No other treatment effects were detected (P > 0.14). Therefore, BAS administration to beef calves alleviated the haptoglobin response associated with weaning, and improved calf growth during the subsequent 45 days. Administration of BAS to beef bulls at feedlot entry improved BW gain during the initial 15 days, but these benefits were not sustained throughout the 45-day experiment.
Social cognition has been associated with functional outcome in patients with first episode psychosis (FEP). Social cognition has also been associated with neurocognition and cognitive reserve. Although cognitive reserve, neurocognitive functioning, social cognition, and functional outcome are related, the direction of their associations is not clear. Therefore, the main aim of this study was to analyze the influence of social cognition as a mediator between cognitive reserve and cognitive domains on functioning in FEP both at baseline and at 2 years.
The sample of the study was composed of 282 FEP patients followed up for 2 years. To analyze whether social cognition mediates the influence of cognitive reserve and cognitive domains on functioning, a path analysis was performed. The statistical significance of any mediation effects was evaluated by bootstrap analysis.
At baseline, as neither cognitive reserve nor the cognitive domains studied were related to functioning, the conditions for mediation were not satisfied. Nevertheless, at 2 years of follow-up, social cognition acted as a mediator between cognitive reserve and functioning. Likewise, social cognition was a mediator between verbal memory and functional outcome. The results of the bootstrap analysis confirmed these significant mediations (95% bootstrapped CI (−10.215 to −0.337) and (−4.731 to −0.605) respectively).
Cognitive reserve and neurocognition are related to functioning, and social cognition mediates in this relationship.
The rocky shores of the north-east Atlantic have been long studied. Our focus is from Gibraltar to Norway plus the Azores and Iceland. Phylogeographic processes shape biogeographic patterns of biodiversity. Long-term and broadscale studies have shown the responses of biota to past climate fluctuations and more recent anthropogenic climate change. Inter- and intra-specific species interactions along sharp local environmental gradients shape distributions and community structure and hence ecosystem functioning. Shifts in domination by fucoids in shelter to barnacles/mussels in exposure are mediated by grazing by patellid limpets. Further south fucoids become increasingly rare, with species disappearing or restricted to estuarine refuges, caused by greater desiccation and grazing pressure. Mesoscale processes influence bottom-up nutrient forcing and larval supply, hence affecting species abundance and distribution, and can be proximate factors setting range edges (e.g., the English Channel, the Iberian Peninsula). Impacts of invasive non-native species are reviewed. Knowledge gaps such as the work on rockpools and host–parasite dynamics are also outlined.
Adherence to dietary guidelines (DG) may result in higher intake of polyphenols via increased consumption of fruits, vegetables and whole grains. We compared polyphenol dietary intake and urinary excretion between two intervention groups in the Cardiovascular risk REduction Study: Supported by an Integrated Dietary Approach study: a 12-week parallel-arm, randomised controlled trial (n 161; sixty-four males, ninety-seven females; aged 40–70 years). One group adhered to UK DG, whereas the other group consumed a representative UK diet (control). We estimated polyphenol dietary intake, using a 4-d food diary (4-DFD) and FFQ, and analysed 24-h polyphenol urinary excretion by liquid chromatography-tandem MS on a subset of participants (n 46 control; n 45 DG). A polyphenol food composition database for 4-DFD analysis was generated using Phenol-Explorer and USDA databases. Total polyphenol intake by 4-DFD at endpoint (geometric means with 95 % CI, adjusted for baseline and sex) was significantly higher in the DG group (1279 mg/d per 10 MJ; 1158, 1412) compared with the control group (1084 mg/d per 10 MJ; 980, 1197). The greater total polyphenol intake in the DG group was attributed to higher intake of anthocyanins, proanthocyanidins and hydroxycinnamic acids, with the primary food sources being fruits, cereal products, nuts and seeds. FFQ estimates of flavonoid intake also detected greater intake in DG compared with the control group. 24-h urinary excretion showed consistency with 4-DFD in their ability to discriminate between dietary intervention groups for six out of ten selected, individual polyphenols. In conclusion, following UK DG increased total polyphenol intake by approximately 20 %, but not all polyphenol subclasses corresponded with this finding.
Androgens have been shown to exert a cysticidal effect upon Taenia crassiceps, an experimental model of cysticercosis. To further inquire into this matter, the Taenia crassiceps model was used to evaluate the expression of several proteins after testosterone (T4) and dihydrotestosterone (DHT) in vitro treatment. Under 2-D proteomic maps, parasite extracts were resolved into approximately 130 proteins distributed in a molecular weight range of 10–250 kDa and isoelectrical point range of 3–10. The resultant proteomic pattern was analysed, and significant changes were observed in response to T4 and DHT. Based on our experience with electrophoretic patterns and proteomic maps of cytoskeletal proteins, alteration in the expression of isoforms of actin, tubulin and paramyosin and of other proteins was assessed. Considering that androgens may exert their biological activity in taeniids through the non-specific progesterone receptor membrane component (PGRMC), we harnessed bioinformatics to propose the identity of androgen-regulated proteins and establish their hypothetical physiological role in the parasites. These analyses yield a possible explanation of how androgens exert their cysticidal effects through changes in the expression of proteins involved in cytoskeletal rearrangement, dynamic vesicular traffic and transduction of intracellular signals.
To examine the quality of life (QOL) of parents of children with a specific mental disorder (any age).
Relevant articles were searched using different databases. Articles were included that compared the QOL of parents with mentally-ill children to parents of healthy controls or norm values or provided the required data for this comparison. A meta-analysis was conducted to obtain an overall mean effect size estimate. Additional analyses were performed to assess publication bias and moderation.
Twenty-six out of 10 548 articles met the pre-defined inclusion criteria. Most of these studies focused on attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder or autism spectrum disorder, used clinical samples that mainly included males and young children and studied the QOL of mothers. The meta-analysis revealed that parents of mentally-ill children are experiencing a clinically relevant reduction in their QOL relative to parents of healthy children and norm values (g = −0.66).
The compromised QOL of parents of mentally-ill children needs to be considered and addressed by health professionals who are in contact with them. The paper provides insights into existing research gaps and suggests improvements for subsequent work.
Silicon carbide together with amorphous carbon are the main components of dust grains in the atmospheres of C-rich AGB stars. Small gaseous Si-C bearing molecules (such as SiC, SiCSi, and SiC2) are efficiently formed close to the stellar photosphere. They likely condense onto dust seeds owing to their highly refractory nature at the lower temperatures (i.e., below about 2500 K) in the dust growth zone which extends a few stellar radii from the photosphere. Beyond this region, the abundances of Si-C bearing molecules are expected to decrease until they are eventually reformed in the outer shells of the circumstellar envelope, owing to the interaction between the gas and the interstellar UV radiation field. Our goal is to understand the time-dependent chemical evolution of Si-C bond carriers probed by molecular spectral line emission in the circumstellar envelope of IRC+10216 at millimeter wavelengths.
AGB stars are important contributors of processed matter to the ISM. However, the physical and chemical mechanisms involved in its ejection are still poorly known. This process is expected to have remarkable effects in the innermost envelope, where the dust grains are formed, the gas is accelerated, the chemistry is active, and the radiative excitation becomes important. A good tracer of this region in C-rich stars is SiS, an abundant refractory molecule that can display maser lines, very sensitive to changes in the physical conditions. We present high angular resolution interferometer observations (HPBW ≳0.″.25) of the v = 0 J = 14 – 13 and 15 – 14 SiS maser lines towards the archetypal AGB star IRC+10216, carried out with CARMA and ALMA to explore the inner 1” region around the central star. We also present an ambitious monitoring of these lines along one single pulsation period carried out with the IRAM 30 m telescope.
Cutting-edge research on materials for lithium ion batteries regularly focuses on nanoscale and atomic-scale phenomena. Electron energy-loss spectroscopy (EELS) is one of the most powerful ways of characterizing composition and aspects of the electronic structure of battery materials, particularly lithium and the transition metal mixed oxides found in the electrodes. However, the characteristic EELS signal from battery materials is challenging to analyze when there is strong overlap of spectral features, poor signal-to-background ratios, or thicker and uneven sample areas. A potential alternative or complementary approach comes from utilizing the valence EELS features (<20 eV loss) of battery materials. For example, the valence EELS features in LiCoO2 maintain higher jump ratios than the Li–K edge, most notably when spectra are collected with minimal acquisition times or from thick sample regions. EELS maps of these valence features give comparable results to the Li–K edge EELS maps of LiCoO2. With some spectral processing, the valence EELS maps more accurately highlight the morphology and distribution of LiCoO2 than the Li–K edge maps, especially in thicker sample regions. This approach is beneficial for cases where sample thickness or beam sensitivity limit EELS analysis, and could be used to minimize electron dosage and sample damage or contamination.
Background: EMBRACE (NCT02462759) Part 1 is a randomized, double-blind, sham-procedure controlled study assessing safety/tolerability of intrathecal nusinersen (12-mg equivalent dose) in symptomatic infants/children with SMA who were not eligible to participate in ENDEAR or CHERISH. Methods: Eligible participants had onset of SMA symptoms at ≤6 months with 3 SMN2 copies; onset at ≤6 months, age >7 months and 2 copies; or onset at >6 months, age ≤18 months, and 2/3 copies. Safety/tolerability was the primary endpoint. Exploratory endpoints included Hammersmith Infant Neurological Examination Section 2 (HINE-2) motor milestone attainment, change in ventilator use, and growth. Results: EMBRACE Part 1 was terminated early based on positive results from ENDEAR. Safety/tolerability was similar to previous trials. More nusinersen-treated (11/14;79%) vs. sham–treated individuals (2/7;29%) were HINE-2 motor milestone responders. Between Day 183 and 302, mean (SD) hours of ventilator use changed by +1.236 (3.712) hours in nusinersen-treated (n=12) and +2.123 (3.023) hours in sham–treated individuals (n=7). Similar increases in weight and body length were observed in nusinersen-treated and sham–treated individuals by Day 183. Conclusions: In EMBRACE Part 1, nusinersen demonstrated a favorable benefit-risk profile. These results add to the aggregated efficacy, safety/tolerability data of nusinersen in SMA.
Several Apriori algorithm implementations for mining association rules have been proposed in the literature using the Hadoop-MapReduce framework and, more recently, Spark. However, none of the works have made a detailed assessment of its performance, for example, comparing it with other implementations in various characteristics of data sets. In this work, we present a review of the main algorithms proposed for Hadoop-MapReduce and compared their implementations in a single environment under several different situations. Moreover, these algorithms had their implementations adapted to Spark, and also compared under the same circumstances. Based on the results of the experiments, we present a framework for recommending the Apriori implementation most appropriate for solving a given problem, according to the data set characteristics and minimum required support. The results show that Spark implementations overcome Hadoop-MapReduce implementations at runtime in most experiments. However, there is no single implementation that is the best in all the evaluated situations.
Previous reviews suggest there is minimal evidence for an association between duration of untreated psychosis (DUP) and neurocognition. This is based on tallied findings of studies with small samples and neurocognition viewed as a single construct. We aimed to conduct a systematic review and meta-analysis examining the association between DUP and individual neurocognitive domains and tests in first-episode psychosis (FEP).
MOOSE and PRISMA guidelines were followed. Forty-three studies involving 4647 FEP patients were included. For studies providing correlations between DUP and neurocognition, 12 separate meta-analyses were performed based on neurocognitive domains/indices. The influence of demographic/clinical variables was tested using weighted linear meta-regression analyses.
The relationship between DUP and most neurocognitive domains/indices was not significant. Longer DUP was associated with a larger cognitive deterioration index, i.e. current minus premorbid intellectual functioning (N = 4; mean ES −0.213, 95% confidence interval (CI) (−0.344 to −0.074), p = 0.003). Findings were homogeneous, with no evidence of publication bias or significant influence from moderators. For studies providing mean and standard deviations for neurocognitive measures and DUP, 20 meta-regressions were performed on individual neurocognitive tests. One significant finding emerged showing that longer DUP was associated with fewer Wisconsin Card Sorting Test-perseverative errors (mean ES −0.031, 95% CI (−0.048 to −0.013), p < 0.001). Exploratory meta-regressions in studies with mean DUP <360 days showed longer DUP was significantly associated with poorer performance on Trail Making Test A and B and higher Full-Scale IQ.
There may not be a generalised association between DUP and neurocognition, however, specific cognitive functions may be associated with longer DUP or delayed help-seeking.
Temperature is expected to modulate the responses of organisms to stress. Here, we aimed to assess the influence of temperature on the interaction between parasitism and fungicide contamination. Specifically, using the cladoceran Daphnia as a model system, we explored the isolated and interactive effects of parasite challenge (yeast Metschnikowia bicuspidata) and exposure to fungicides (copper sulphate and tebuconazole) at two temperatures (17 and 20 °C), in a fully factorial design. Confirming a previous study, M. bicuspidata infection and copper exposure caused independent effects on Daphnia life history, whereas infection was permanently suppressed with tebuconazole exposure. Here, we show that higher temperature generally increased the virulence of the parasite, with the hosts developing signs of infection earlier, reproducing less and dying at an earlier age. These effects were consistent across copper concentrations, whereas the joint effects of temperature (which enhanced the difference between non-infected and infected hosts) and the anti-parasitic action of tebuconazole resulted in a more pronounced parasite × tebuconazole interaction at the higher temperature. Thus, besides independently influencing parasite and contaminant effects, the temperature can act as a modulator of interactions between pollution and disease.
TAOS II is a next-generation occultation survey with the goal of measuring the size distribution of the small end of the Kuiper Belt (objects with diameters 0.5–30 km). Such objects have magnitudes r > 30, and are thus undetectable by direct imaging. The project will operate three telescopes at San Pedro Mártir Observatory in Baja California, México. Each telescope will be equipped with a custom-built camera comprised of a focal-plane array of CMOS imagers. The cameras will be capable of reading out image data from 10,000 stars at a cadence of 20 Hz. The telescopes will monitor the same set of stars simultaneously to search for coincident occultation detections, thus minimising the false-positive rate. This talk described the project, and reported on the progress of the development of the survey infrastructure.
Previous cafeteria studies suggested that a moderate natural gastrointestinal nematode (GIN) infection did not modify the resource selection of adult Criollo goats towards tannin-rich plants compared with worm-free goats. A higher infection with Haemonchus contortus could trigger a change in the resource selection behaviour towards tannin-rich foliage. Alternatively, goats might select plant species solely to meet their nutritional requirements. A cafeteria study investigated the effect of a high artificial infection with H. contortus on the feed resource selection of goats. Adult Criollo goats (37.5±4.8 kg BW) with browsing experience were distributed in two groups: the infected group (IG) with six animals artificially infected with H. contortus (6000 L3/animal); and the non-infected group (NIG) with six animals maintained worm-free. The experiment included two 5-day periods with additional 5-day adaptation period. In the first period, animals were offered foliage of five plant species with a decreasing gradient of condensed tannins (CT) (Mimosa bahamensis, Gymnopodium floribundum, Havardia albicans, Acacia pennatula, Lysiloma latisiliqum), and three plant species with negligible CT content (Leucaena leucocephala, Piscidia piscipula and Brosimum alicastrum). In the second period the foliage of B. alicastrum was withdrawn. A grain-based concentrate feed was offered daily at 1% BW in DM basis. Dry matter and nutrient intake was determined. Foliage selection of each experimental group was determined using the Chesson selection index. The H. contortus egg count per gram of faeces (EPG) was determined for infected goats twice daily. Chesson index showed a similar pattern of foliage selection on periods 1 and 2. Mean EPG of goats in IG was 2028±259 EPG during period 1 and 1 293±198 EPG during period 2 (P>0.05). During period 1, the selection pattern was highest for B. alicastrum (tannin-free), followed by a tannin-rich plant (M. bahamensis). These two plants remained as highly selected during period 2. The Chesson index showed that both experimental groups (IG and NIG) selected the same plant species in both periods. Thus, a high H. contortus infection did not affect selection of goats fed with CT-rich plants. Apparently, goats balanced their nutrient intake with the plants selected, showing evidence of nutritional wisdom. This balance may have helped to prevent excess protein in the diet and also to maintain a low GIN infection, both considered as examples of prophylactic self-medication.
Goat dairy products are an important source of animal protein in the tropics. During the dry season, pasture scarcity leads animals to lose up to 40% of their body weight, a condition known as Seasonal Weight Loss (SWL) that is one of the major constraints in ruminant production. Breeds with high tolerance to SWL are relevant to understand the physiological responses to pasture scarcity so they could be used in programs for animal breeding. In the Canary Islands there are two dairy goat breeds with different levels of tolerance to SWL: the Palmera, susceptible to SWL; and the Majorera, tolerant to SWL. Fat is one of the milk components most affected by environmental and physiological conditions. This study hypothesises that feed-restriction affects Majorera and Palmera breeds differently, leading to different fatty acid profiles in the mammary gland and milk. An interaction between breed and feed-restriction was observed in the mammary gland. Feed-restriction was associated with an increase in oleic acid and a decrease in palmitic acid percentage in the Palmera breed whereas no differences were observed in the Majorera breed. Palmitic and oleic acids together constituted around 60% of the total fatty acids identified, which suggests that Palmera breed is more susceptible to SWL. In milk, feed-restriction affected both breeds similarly. Regarding the interaction of the breed with the treatment, we also observed similar responses in both breeds, but this influence affects only around 2% of the total fatty acids. In general, Majorera breed is more tolerant to feed-restriction.
The aim of the present study was to investigate the relationship of four TNF-α SNP with inflammatory biomarkers and plasma fatty acids (FA), and the interaction among them in a population-based, cross-sectional study in São Paulo, Brazil. A total of 281 subjects, aged >19 and <60 years, participated in a cross-sectional, population-based study performed in Brazil. The following SNP spanning the TNF-α gene were genotyped: -238G/A (rs361525), -308G/A (rs1800629), -857C/T (rs1799724) and -1031T/C (rs1799964). In all, eleven plasma inflammatory biomarkers and plasma FA profile were determined. To analyse the interaction between TNF-α SNP and plasma FA, a cluster analysis was performed to stratify individuals based on eleven inflammatory biomarkers into two groups used as outcome: inflammatory (INF) and non-inflammatory clusters. The -238A allele carriers had higher TNF-α (P=0·033), IL-6 (P=0·013), IL-1β (P=0·037), IL-12 (0·048) and IL-10 (P=0·010) than the GG genotype. The -308A allele carriers also had lower levels of plasma palmitoleic acid (P=0·009), oleic acid (P=0·039), total MUFA (P=0·014), stearoyl-CoA desaturase (SCD) activity index-16 (P=0·007), SCD-18 (P=0·020) and higher levels of PUFA (P=0·046) and DHA (P=0·044). Significant interactions modifying the risk of belonging to the INF cluster were observed with inflammatory cluster as outcome between -857C/T and plasma α-linolenic acid (P=0·026), and also between -308G/A and plasma stearic acid (P=0·044) and total SFA (P=0·040). Our study contributes to knowledge on TNF-α SNP and their association with inflammatory biomarker levels, plasma FA and the interaction among them, of particular interest for the Brazilian population.