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In preparation for a multisite antibiotic stewardship intervention, we assessed knowledge and attitudes toward management of asymptomatic bacteriuria (ASB) plus teamwork and safety climate among providers, nurses, and clinical nurse assistants (CNAs).
Prospective surveys during January–June 2018.
All acute and long-term care units of 4 Veterans’ Affairs facilities.
The survey instrument included 2 previously tested subcomponents: the Kicking CAUTI survey (ASB knowledge and attitudes) and the Safety Attitudes Questionnaire (SAQ).
A total of 534 surveys were completed, with an overall response rate of 65%. Cognitive biases impacting management of ASB were identified. For example, providers presented with a case scenario of an asymptomatic patient with a positive urine culture were more likely to give antibiotics if the organism was resistant to antibiotics. Additionally, more than 80% of both nurses and CNAs indicated that foul smell is an appropriate indication for a urine culture. We found significant interprofessional differences in teamwork and safety climate (defined as attitudes about issues relevant to patient safety), with CNAs having highest scores and resident physicians having the lowest scores on self-reported perceptions of teamwork and safety climates (P < .001). Among providers, higher safety-climate scores were significantly associated with appropriate risk perceptions related to ASB, whereas social norms concerning ASB management were correlated with higher teamwork climate ratings.
Our survey revealed substantial misunderstanding regarding management of ASB among providers, nurses, and CNAs. Educating and empowering these professionals to discourage unnecessary urine culturing and inappropriate antibiotic use will be key components of antibiotic stewardship efforts.
Influenza A(H1N1) viruses of the 2009 pandemic (A(H1N1)pdm09) continue to cause outbreaks in the post-pandemic period. During January to May 2015, an upsurge of influenza was recorded that resulted in high fatality in central India. Genetic lineage, mutations in the hemagglutinin (HA) gene and infection by quasi-species are reported to affect disease severity. The objective of this study is to present the molecular and epidemiological trends during the 2015 influenza outbreak in central India. All the referred samples were subjected to qRT–PCR for diagnosis. HA gene sequencing (23 survivors and 24 non-survivors) and cloning were performed and analyzed using Molecular Evolutionary Genomic Analyzer (MEGA 5·05). Of the 3625 tested samples, 1607 (44·3%) were positive for influenza A(H1N1)pdm09, of which 228 (14·2%) individuals succumbed to death. A significant trend was observed in positivity (P = 0·003) and mortality (P < 0·0001) with increasing age. The circulating A(H1N1)pdm09 virus was characterized as belonging to clade-6B. Clinically significant mutations were detected. Patients infected with the quasi-species of the virus had a greater risk of death (P = 0·009). This study proposes a robust molecular and clinical surveillance program for the detection and characterization of the virus, along with prompt treatment protocols to prevent outbreaks.
The nonlinear propagation of pulsar radiation in an electronpositron plasma is considered. Accounting for the pulsar radiation ponderomotive force, the relativistic mass variation, and the plasma magnetization, we obtain a pair of nonlinear equations which exhibit coupling of pulsar radiation with the background plasma slow motions in magnetized plasmas. The modulational/filamentation instability as well as the localization of pulsar radiation are investigated. We conclude that our investigation is relevant to the microstructures in the pulsar magnetosphere.
Designing bioactive materials, with controlled metal ion release, exerting significant bioactivity and associated low toxicity for humans, is nowadays one of the most important challenges for the scientific community. In this work, we propose a new material combining the well-known antimicrobial properties of copper nanoparticles (CuNPs) with those of bioactive chitosan (CS), a cheap natural polymer widely exploited for its biodegradability and nontoxicity. Here, we used ultrafast femtosecond laser pulses to finely fragment, via laser ablation, a Cu solid target immersed into aqueous CS solutions. Homogeneously dispersed copper-chitosan (Cu-CS) colloids were obtained by tuning the Cu/CS molar ratios, according to the initial chitosan concentration, as well as other experimental parameters. Cu-CS colloids were characterized by several techniques, like UV-Vis and X-ray Photoelectron spectroscopies (XPS). Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM) was used to morphologically characterize the novel nanocomposites.
The present work focuses on the polyol-mediated synthesis of pure and Mg-doped ZnO nanoparticles. The synthesized samples were characterized via X-ray diffraction, Fourier transformed infrared spectroscopy, ultraviolet visible spectroscopy and photoluminescence techniques. The Standard Plate Count was used to assess the bactericidal properties of the nanoparticles against E. coli at 1000 ppm and 1500 ppm of concentration. The capacity of the Zn-Mg oxides to generate singlet oxygen (SO) species was also evaluated. X-ray diffraction information evidenced the formation of ZnO-wurtzite; no diffraction peaks corresponding to isolated Mg-phases were detected. The average crystallite size of the Zn-Mg oxide nanocrystals was estimated in the 6nm - 7nm range. Infrared spectroscopy measurements confirmed the formation of the oxide with a Metal-Oxygen band centered on 536 cm-1; other bands associated to the functional groups of polyol by product were also observed. The exciton peak of UV spectrum suggests similarity in the particle size with the dopant addition. The effect of particle composition (i.e. doping level) on the corresponding generation of SO and bactericidal capacity is presented and discussed.
We have developed a new method for controlling the size, crystallinity, and polydispersity of 100–2000 nm tetrafluoride phosphor particles. Five polyol-based deep eutectic solvents (DESs) were downselected out of a set of more than 130 candidates. We analyzed their benefits in synthesizing phosphor matrix particles of β-NaYF4, β-NaYbF4, and β-NaGdF4. We produced green (λmax = 540 nm) and blue/UV (λmax = 450 nm) upconverting phosphors in DES using Yb,Er and Yb,Tm codopants, respectively. The blue/UV phosphor reaction was scaled the up to 25 L, yielding nearly 400 g of high-quality, bright photoluminescent, β-phase product under mild conditions. We conclude that polyol-based DES systems offer a uniquely specialized and useful toolkit for phosphor synthesis.
Solution-based fabrication methods have been widely used for depositing uniform functional coatings. These coatings can be utilized in a variety of applications such as optoelectronics, biomedical, and energy. However, such fabrication techniques are not appropriate for directly depositing patterned micro/nano-scale features, which are required in many contact-based applications such as in MEMS.
In this work we propose the direct writing of hydrophobic silica-based sol-gel patterns with sustained functionality and their subsequent tribological characterization. Such an approach may be an advantageous alternative to current lithography-based methods due to the relative ease of processing and low material waste. This investigation involves the abrasive wear and frictional analysis of patterned fluorinated silica sol-gel coatings that are directly printed onto glass substrates with a robotically controlled pneumatic nozzle system. Such work sheds light on the tribological properties of lithography-free processed hydrophobic patterns for applications spanning from micromotors to biomedical fluidic devices.
A PbSe film was grown by chemical bath deposition on a thermally oxidized Si (111) substrate. Morphological change of the PbSe film during sensitization under the oxygen and iodine atmospheres was studied by SEM. The as-grown polycrystalline PbSe film consists of clusters of about 200nm in diameter. By the oxidation treatment for 30 min at 380°C, the clusters became joined together. On the other hand, recrystallization of new PbSe crystals with faceted surfaces occurred during the iodination treatment under an iodine plus nitrogen atmosphere at 380°C for different durations. This morphological change during the sensitization treatment might affect the electro-optical properties of the PbSe film.
In here we depict the morphogenesis and associated properties of TiO2-based macroscopic fibers designed for the photodecomposition of volatile organic compounds (VOC). We employed a continuous industrially scalable extrusion-based process making the use of hybrid sols of amorphous titania nanoparticles, polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) and occasionally latex nanoparticles. This process allowed for the continuous generation of hybrid TiO2/latex/PVA or TiO2/PVA macroscopic fibers. Upon thermal treatment, biphasic porous fibers are obtained containing the anatase phase of TiO2 with 10-15% of brookite. These fibers, which can be manufactured under several hundred meter of length, are offering significantly improved phototocatalytic efficiency now comparable to the commercial Quartzel®PCO photocatalyst for gas-phase acetone mineralization.
The optimization of the figure of merit of thermoelectric materials requires the simultaneous control of the material composition and microstructure. Assembly of nanoparticles obtained by a solution route is an attractive bulk fabrication method because size and shape of the nanoparticles can be tuned by variation of the synthesis conditions. Recently, new synthetic pathways were reported among which reducing agent assisted, surfactant free processes. We report here the evaluation of this method for the synthesis of Bi2TexSe3-x alloyed nanoparticles with varying selenium concentrations. X-ray diffraction studies conducted on powder and pellet samples show that two alloyed phases are present in the sample even at low selenium content. The careful study of the position of the diffraction peaks as function of the formulation shows that this behaviour could arise from the difference in reactivity of selenium and tellurium. Moreover, the electrical conductivity of the samples is shown to increase upon selenium addition while the Seebeck coefficient is reduced. Power factor shows an optimum value around 20% selenium content with a large tolerance in composition.
Dengue is regarded as the most important arboviral disease. Although sporadic cases have been reported, serotypes responsible for outbreaks have not been identified from central India over the last 20 years. We investigated two outbreaks of febrile illness, in August and November 2012, from Korea district (Chhattisgarh) and Narsinghpur district (Madhya Pradesh), respectively. Fever and entomological surveys were conducted in the affected regions. Molecular and serological tests were conducted on collected serum samples. Dengue-specific amplicons were sequenced and phylogenetic analyses were performed. In Korea and Narsinghpur districts 37·3% and 59% of cases were positive, respectively, for dengue infection, with adults being the worst affected. RT–PCR confirmed dengue virus serotype 1 genotype III as the aetiology. Ninety-six percent of infections were primary. This is the first time that dengue virus 1 outbreaks have been documented from central India. Introduction of the virus into the population and a conducive mosquitogenic environment favouring increased vector density caused the outbreak. Timely diagnosis and strengthening vector control measures are essential to avoid future outbreaks.
Polarization force (acting on a dust grain) and its modification by polarity of dust, non-isothermal (viz. non-thermal and trapped) ions, adiabaticity of electrons and ions, etc. have been investigated theoretically. It has been found that the polarization force is significantly modified by these effects, i.e. the magnitude of the polarization force is significantly decreased by the presence of non-thermal ions and by the adiabaticity of electrons and ions. On the other hand, it is significantly increased by the presence of trapped ions. It has been also shown that the magnitude of the polarization force is increased (decreased) by electric potential in the case of positively (negatively) charged dust. The relevance of our investigation to some space and astrophysical plasma situations is discussed.
Waves in a dusty plasma over the lunar dayside are considered. It is shown that the relative motion of the solar wind with respect to the photoelectrons over the lunar surface leads to the excitation of high-frequency oscillations with frequencies in the range of Langmuir and electromagnetic waves. The dust acoustic wave excitation is possible in the vicinity of the lunar terminator.
The “International Topical Conference on Plasma Science: Advanced Plasma Concepts” was hosted by Instituto Superior Técnico, Lisbon and the University of Algarve, Faro, Portugal, during the period 24–28 September 2012. The conference was organized by Padma Kant Shukla, (Ruhr University Bochum, Germany), Robert Bingham (RAL, United Kingdom) and José Tito Mendonça, (IST, Portugal). The scientific activity belongs to a series of successful meetings, which started at the Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics, Trieste, in 1989, and which has also been taking place at various other locations, including Faro and Lisbon in Portugal, and Santorini in Greece.
A relativistically hot electron, positron and ion (e–p–i) plasma relaxes to a triple curl Beltrami (TCB) field. The TCB field being the superposition of three Beltrami fields is characterized by three scale parameters and hence there exist multiscale structures in the system. It is shown that temperatures of the plasma constituents strongly affect the scale parameters. Generally, the scale parameters associated with the TCB field may be a combination of real and complex roots. The numerical results show that for given Beltrami parameters, an increase in the thermal energy of plasma particles could transform the real eigenvalues to complex ones. It is also observed that one component is more strongly affected relative to other components on increasing temperatures of plasma species. Two different vortices become the same at higher thermal energies. This suggests that it is possible to create high β (kinetic to magnetic pressure ratio) and fully diamagnetic plasma configurations. The study has a potential relevance to space, astrophysics and laboratory plasmas.
X-ray and extreme ultraviolet emission from galaxy clusters can be interpreted as thermal emission from a hot plasma gravitationally bound to the cluster and constituting a significant amount of the mass of the cluster. The origin of this plasma and its thermal energy content can be linked to the formation process through the theory of self-organization of these structures.
Solitary waves are investigated in a charge-varying dusty plasma involving dust trapping. A potentially useful neuronal method that may handle a wide variety of non-analytic pseudo-potentials is used. This method could be advantageously exploited in rendering a cumbersome pseudo-potential analytically more tractable. Making use of the approximate Sagdeev pseudo-potential, our results show the possibility of development of localized dust structures in a dusty plasma with variable charge trapped dust grains.
Using the multi-fluid model of plasmas, we have analytically obtained a generalized Bohm criterion in the plasma, including hot electrons and multiply charged ions, and have numerically examined its validity. The new Bohm-sheath criterion shows that increasing the charge number of positive ions and decreasing the charge number of negative ions would increase the minimum ion speed that is required for the Bohm criterion to satisfy.