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A zirconolite glass-ceramic material is a candidate wasteform for immobilisation of chlorine contaminated plutonium residues, in which plutonium and chlorine are partitioned to the zirconolite and aluminosilicate glass phase, respectively. A preliminary investigation of chlorine speciation was undertaken by analysis of Cl K-edge X-ray Absorption Near Edge Spectroscopy (XANES), to understand the incorporation mechanism. Cl was found to be speciated as the Cl- anion within the glass phase, according to the characteristic chemical shift of the X-ray absorption edge. By comparison with Cl K-edge XANES data acquired from reference compounds, the local environment of the Cl- anion is most closely approximated by the mineral marialite, in which Cl is co-ordinate to 4 x Na and/or Ca atoms.
In primates and carnivores, the main laminae of the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN) receive monocular excitatory input in an eye-alternating fashion. There is also evidence that nondominant eye stimulation can reduce responses to dominant eye stimulation and that a subset of LGN cells in the koniocellular (K) layers receives convergent binocular excitatory input from both eyes. What is not known is how the two eye inputs summate in the K layers of LGN. Here, we aimed to answer this question by making extracellular array electrode recordings targeted to K layers in the marmoset (Callithrix jacchus) LGN, as visual stimuli (flashed 200 ms temporal square-wave pulses or drifting gratings) were presented to each eye independently or to both eyes simultaneously. We found that when the flashed stimulus was presented to both eyes, compared to the dominant eye, the peak firing rate of most cells (61%, 14/23) was reduced. The remainder showed response facilitation (17%) or partial summation (22%). A greater degree of facilitation was seen when the total number of spikes across the stimulus time window (200 ms) rather than peak firing rates was measured. A similar pattern of results was seen for contrast-varying gratings and for small numbers of parvocellular (n = 12) and magnocellular (n = 3) cells recorded. Our findings show that binocular summation in the marmoset LGN is weak and predominantly sublinear in nature.
Bloodstream infection (BSI) is a serious complication in immunocompromised hosts. This study compares epidemiological, clinical and microbiological characteristics of BSI among children with haematological malignancies (HM) and solid tumours (ST). The study was conducted from October 2012 through to November 2015 at a referral hospital for cancer care and included the first BSI episode detected in 210 patients aged 18 years or less. BSI cases were prospectively detected by daily laboratory-based surveillance. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention definitions for primary or secondary BSI were used. A higher proportion of use of corticosteroids (P = 0.02), chemotherapy (P = 0.01) and antibiotics (P = 0.05) before the BSI diagnosis; as well as of neutropenia (P < 0.001) and mucositis (P < 0.001) at the time of BSI diagnosis was observed in patients with HM than with ST. Previous surgical procedures (P = 0.03), mechanical ventilation (P = 0.01) and bed confinement (P < 0.001) were more frequent among children with ST. The frequency of use of temporary (P = 0.01) and implanted vascular lines (P < 0.01) was significantly higher in children with ST than with HM while the tunnelled line (P = 0.01) use was more frequent in children with HM as compared to ST. Most (n = 181) BSI cases were primary BSI. BSI associated with a tunnelled catheter was more frequent in children with HM (P < 0.01), whereas BSI associated with an implanted (P < 0.01) or temporary central line (P < 0.02) was more common in patients with ST. BSI associated with mucosal barrier injury was more frequent (P = 0.01) in children with HM. Indication for intensive care was more frequent in children (P = 0.05) with ST. Mortality ratio was similar in children with ST and HM, and length of hospital stay after BSI was higher in patients with HM than with ST (median of 19 vs. 13 days; P = 0.02). Infection caused by Gram-negative bacteria (P = 0.04) and polymicrobial infections (P = 0.05) due to Gram-positive cocci plus fungus was more common in patients with HM. These findings suggest that the characteristics of BSI acquisition and mortality can be cancer-specific.
Contrary to intensive pig production, local pig breeds and their production systems are able to respond to the high criteria and expectations of modern society in regard to some environmental aspects, animal welfare, food quality and healthiness. This study proposes the recovery, study and use of a cross between two local breeds, contributing to animal biodiversity conservation and to the income of local pig producers. This work studied the growth performance and blood, carcass and meat quality traits of Alentejano (AL), Bísaro (BI) and Ribatejano (RI) (AL × BI, BI × AL) castrated male pigs. Raised outdoors, pigs were fed commercial diets ad libitum and killed at ~65 kg (trial 1, n = 10 from each genotype) and ~150 kg BW (trial 2, n = 9 from each genotype). In trial 1, AL and AL × BI attained slaughter weight later than BI and BI × AL pigs, with AL presenting lower average daily gains than the other genotypes (P < 0.001). Alentejano and RI pigs presented higher (P < 0.01) levels of plasma total protein than BI. Overall, carcass traits were affected by genotype, with length (P < 0.01), yield (P = 0.07) and lean cut proportions (P < 0.01) lower in AL than BI, and intermediate values for crossed pigs. Conversely, AL pigs presented higher fat cut proportion (P < 0.01), average backfat thickness (P < 0.001) and ‘zwei punkte’ fat depth (P < 0.01) than BI and RI pigs. Alentejano pigs also presented higher Longissimus lumborum (LL) intramuscular fat (P < 0.05), myoglobin content and ultimate pH (P < 0.01), but lower total collagen (P < 0.05), drip (P < 0.001) and cooking losses (P < 0.01), and shear force (P < 0.001) than all other genotypes. Finally, LL showed a more intense red colour in AL than in BI pigs. In trial 2, AL pigs confirmed to be a slow-growing obese breed with lower bone and lean cut proportions than BI, and higher LL intramuscular fat, richer colour, lower water loss and higher tenderness. In both trials, RI pigs grew faster, with higher lean and lower fat cut proportions and backfat thickness, and with overall LL characteristics comparable to those observed in AL pigs. This work demonstrates some clear differences between AL and BI breeds while showing that their crosses present intermediate characteristics in most studied traits. These data on RI pigs can be useful to breeders’ associations and farmers in order to consider the use of these crosses as an option or complement to pure line breeding.
The Kempen system is a dairy feeding system in which diet is provided in the form of a compound feed (CF) and hay offered ad libitum. Ad libitum access to CF and hay allows cows in this system to achieve a high DM intake (DMI). Out of physiological concerns, the voluntary hay intake could be increased and the consumption pattern of CF could be manipulated to maintain proper rumen functioning and health. This study investigated the effects of an artificial hay aroma and CF formulation on feed intake pattern, rumen function and milk production in mid- to late-lactating dairy cows. Twenty Holstein–Friesian cows were assigned to four treatments in a 4 × 4 Latin square design. Diet consisted of CF and grass hay (GH), fed separately, and both offered ad libitum, although CF supply was restricted in maximum meal size and speed of supply by an electronic system. Treatments were the combination of two CF formulations – high in starch (CHS) and fibre (CHF); and two GH – untreated (UGH) and the same hay treated with an artificial aroma (TGH). Meal criteria were determined using three-population Gaussian–Gaussian–Weibull density functions. No GH × CF interaction effects on feed intake pattern characteristics were found. Total DMI and CF intake, but not GH intake, were greater (P < 0.01) in TGH treatment, and feed intake was not affected by type of CF. Total visits to feeders per day, visits to the GH feeder, visits to the CF feeder and CF eating time (all P < 0.01) were significantly greater in cows fed with TGH. Meal frequency, meal size and meal duration were unaffected by treatments. Cows fed CHF had a greater milk fat (P = 0.02), milk urea content (P < 0.01) and a greater milk fat yield (P < 0.01). Cows fed TGH had a greater milk lactose content and lactose yield (P < 0.05), and milk urea content (P < 0.01). Cows fed TGH had smaller molar proportions of acetic acid and greater molar proportions of propionic acid compared with UGH. In conclusion, treatment of GH with an artificial aroma increased CF intake and total DMI, but did not affect hay intake. Additionally, GH treatment increased the frequency of visits to both feeders, and affected rumen volatile fatty acid profile. Type of CF did not affect meal patterns, ruminal pH, nor fermentation profiles.
A high prevalence of asthma has been documented among the inhabitants of Tristan da Cunha, an isolated island in the South Atlantic. The population derives from just 28 founders. We performed lung function testing, including methacholine inhalation challenge, allergen skin prick testing, and collected DNA from essentially all of the current island population (269 individuals), and genotyped a panel of 43 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) reported as associated with asthma and atopy. We carried out a mixed-model association analysis using the known pedigree. There were 96 individuals diagnosed as asthmatic (36%), and heritability estimates were similar to those from nonisolated population samples (multifactorial threshold model, h2 = 48%). The first component from a genetic principal components analysis using the entire SNP panel was nonlinearly associated with asthma, with the maximum risk to those intermediate to reference (Human Genome Diversity Project) European and African samples means. The single most strongly associated SNP was rs2786098 (p = 5.5 × 10−5), known to regulate the gene DENND1B. This explained approximately one-third of the trait heritability, with an allelic odds ratio for the A allele of 2.6. Among A/A carriers, 10 out of 12 individuals were asthmatic. The rs2786098*A variant was initially reported to decrease the risk of childhood (atopic) asthma in European but slightly increase the risk in African-descended populations, and does significantly alter Th2 cell function. Despite an absence of overall association with this variant in recent asthma genome wide association studies meta-analyses, an effect may exist on the particular genetic background of the Tristan da Cunha population.
Pulmonary hypertension is a complex and progressive condition that is either idiopathic or heritable, or associated with one or multiple health conditions, with or without congenital or acquired cardiovascular disease. Recent developments have tremendously increased the armamentarium of diagnostic and therapeutic approaches in children and young adults with pulmonary hypertension that is still associated with a high morbidity and mortality. These modalities include non-invasive imaging, pharmacotherapy, interventional and surgical procedures, and supportive measures. The optimal, tailored diagnostic and therapeutic strategies for pulmonary hypertension in the young are rapidly evolving but still face enormous challenges: Healthcare providers need to take the patient’s age, development, disease state, and family concerns into account when initiating advanced diagnostics and treatment. Therefore, there is a need for guidance on core and advanced medical training in paediatric pulmonary hypertension. The Association for European Paediatric and Congenital Cardiology working group “pulmonary hypertension, heart failure and transplantation” has produced this document as an expert consensus statement; however, all recommendations must be considered and applied in the context of the local and national infrastructure and legal regulations.
Ruminants are recognised to suffer from Cu-responsive disorders. Present understanding of Cu transport and metabolism is limited and inconsistent across vets and veterinary professionals. There has been much progress from the studies of the 1980s and early 1990s in cellular Cu transport and liver metabolism which has not been translated into agricultural practice. Cu metabolism operates in regulated pathways of Cu trafficking rather than in pools of Cu lability. Cu in the cell is chaperoned to enzyme production, retention within metallothionein or excretion via the Golgi into the blood. The hepatocyte differs in that Cu-containing caeruloplasmin can be synthesised to provide systemic Cu supply and excess Cu is excreted via bile. The aim of the present review is to improve understanding and highlight the relevant progress in relation to ruminants through the translation of newer findings from medicine and non-ruminant animal models into ruminants.
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.
Vaccination coverage (VC) against pertussis can increase when management practices and policies at primary care centres (PCCs) are reinforced. From 2011 to 2015, we performed a case–control study to evaluate VC among pertussis patients treated at PCCs in Barcelona, Spain. We recorded pertussis in patients from 8- to 16-year-olds at 52 PCCs. Pertussis cases had laboratory diagnostic and controls were healthy outpatients visiting the same facility for reasons other than cough. DTaP/dTap VC was recorded as either proper vaccination status (five doses recorded) or improper vaccination status (<5 doses recorded). We used a logistic regression model to estimate OR and 95% CI. We included 229 cases and 576 controls. VC was higher in cases (mean 5.01, s.e.: 0.57) than in controls (4.89, s.e.: 0.73). Around 69% of the cases had received DTaP primary immunisation after 2–5 years and 31.4% of cases had the dTap booster immunisation after 7–10 years. The 87% of children 5–9 years were properly vaccinated. We found no protection from becoming ill among properly vaccinated children (OR 1.87; 95% CI 1.22–2.85). The highest VC was observed in patients with confirmed pertussis, which was likely due to a more exhaustive follow-up of the VC in these patients. Being properly vaccinated against pertussis will probably not increase VC.
Nectocaridids are soft-bodied Cambrian organisms that have been controversially interpreted as primitive cephalopods, at odds with the long-held belief that these mollusks evolved from a shell-bearing ancestor. Here, I document a new nectocaridid from the Whetstone Gulf Formation, extending the group's range into the Late Ordovician. Nectocotis rusmithi n. gen. n. sp. possesses a robust internal element that resembles a non-mineralized phragmocone or gladius. Nectocaridids can be accommodated in the cephalopod total group if the earliest cephalopods (1) inherited a non-mineralized shell field from the ancestral mollusk; and (2) internalized this shell field. This evolutionary scenario would overturn the traditional ectocochleate, Nautilus-like reconstruction of the ancestral cephalopod, and indicate a trend towards increased metabolic efficiency through the course of Cambrian–Ordovician evolution.
The COllaborative project of Development of Anthropometrical measures in Twins (CODATwins) project is a large international collaborative effort to analyze individual-level phenotype data from twins in multiple cohorts from different environments. The main objective is to study factors that modify genetic and environmental variation of height, body mass index (BMI, kg/m2) and size at birth, and additionally to address other research questions such as long-term consequences of birth size. The project started in 2013 and is open to all twin projects in the world having height and weight measures on twins with information on zygosity. Thus far, 54 twin projects from 24 countries have provided individual-level data. The CODATwins database includes 489,981 twin individuals (228,635 complete twin pairs). Since many twin cohorts have collected longitudinal data, there is a total of 1,049,785 height and weight observations. For many cohorts, we also have information on birth weight and length, own smoking behavior and own or parental education. We found that the heritability estimates of height and BMI systematically changed from infancy to old age. Remarkably, only minor differences in the heritability estimates were found across cultural–geographic regions, measurement time and birth cohort for height and BMI. In addition to genetic epidemiological studies, we looked at associations of height and BMI with education, birth weight and smoking status. Within-family analyses examined differences within same-sex and opposite-sex dizygotic twins in birth size and later development. The CODATwins project demonstrates the feasibility and value of international collaboration to address gene-by-exposure interactions that require large sample sizes and address the effects of different exposures across time, geographical regions and socioeconomic status.
Feed represents a substantial proportion of production costs in the dairy industry and is a useful target for improving overall system efficiency and sustainability. The objective of this study was to develop methodology to estimate the economic value for a feed efficiency trait and the associated methane production relevant to Canada. The approach quantifies the level of economic savings achieved by selecting animals that convert consumed feed into product while minimizing the feed energy used for inefficient metabolism, maintenance and digestion. We define a selection criterion trait called Feed Performance (FP) as a 1 kg increase in more efficiently used feed in a first parity lactating cow. The impact of a change in this trait on the total lifetime value of more efficiently used feed via correlated selection responses in other life stages is then quantified. The resulting improved conversion of feed was also applied to determine the resulting reduction in output of emissions (and their relative value based on a national emissions value) under an assumption of constant methane yield, where methane yield is defined as kg methane/kg dry matter intake (DMI). Overall, increasing the FP estimated breeding value by one unit (i.e. 1 kg of more efficiently converted DMI during the cow’s first lactation) translates to a total lifetime saving of 3.23 kg in DMI and 0.055 kg in methane with the economic values of CAD $0.82 and CAD $0.07, respectively. Therefore, the estimated total economic value for FP is CAD $0.89/unit. The proposed model is robust and could also be applied to determine the economic value for feed efficiency traits within a selection index in other production systems and countries.
Item 9 of the Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9) queries about thoughts of death and self-harm, but not suicidality. Although it is sometimes used to assess suicide risk, most positive responses are not associated with suicidality. The PHQ-8, which omits Item 9, is thus increasingly used in research. We assessed equivalency of total score correlations and the diagnostic accuracy to detect major depression of the PHQ-8 and PHQ-9.
We conducted an individual patient data meta-analysis. We fit bivariate random-effects models to assess diagnostic accuracy.
16 742 participants (2097 major depression cases) from 54 studies were included. The correlation between PHQ-8 and PHQ-9 scores was 0.996 (95% confidence interval 0.996 to 0.996). The standard cutoff score of 10 for the PHQ-9 maximized sensitivity + specificity for the PHQ-8 among studies that used a semi-structured diagnostic interview reference standard (N = 27). At cutoff 10, the PHQ-8 was less sensitive by 0.02 (−0.06 to 0.00) and more specific by 0.01 (0.00 to 0.01) among those studies (N = 27), with similar results for studies that used other types of interviews (N = 27). For all 54 primary studies combined, across all cutoffs, the PHQ-8 was less sensitive than the PHQ-9 by 0.00 to 0.05 (0.03 at cutoff 10), and specificity was within 0.01 for all cutoffs (0.00 to 0.01).
PHQ-8 and PHQ-9 total scores were similar. Sensitivity may be minimally reduced with the PHQ-8, but specificity is similar.