To send content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about sending content to .
To send content items to your Kindle, first ensure firstname.lastname@example.org
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
Significant increases in excess all-cause mortality, particularly in the elderly, were observed during the winter of 2014/15 in England. With influenza A(H3N2) the dominant circulating influenza A subtype, this paper determines the contribution of influenza to this excess controlling for weather. A standardised multivariable Poisson regression model was employed with weekly all-cause deaths the dependent variable for the period 2008–2015. Adjusting for extreme temperature, a total of 26 542 (95% CI 25 301–27 804) deaths in 65+ and 1942 (95% CI 1834–2052) in 15–64-year-olds were associated with influenza from week 40, 2014 to week 20, 2015. This is compatible with the circulation of influenza A(H3N2). It is the largest estimated number of influenza-related deaths in England since prior to 2008/09. The findings highlight the potential health impact of influenza and the important role of the annual influenza vaccination programme that is required to protect the population including the elderly, who are vulnerable to a severe outcome.
In autumn 2014, enterovirus D68 (EV-D68) cases presenting with severe respiratory or neurological disease were described in countries worldwide. To describe the epidemiology and virological characteristics of EV-D68 in England, we collected clinical information on laboratory-confirmed EV-D68 cases detected in secondary care (hospitals), between September 2014 and January 2015. In primary care (general practitioners), respiratory swabs collected (September 2013–January 2015) from patients presenting with influenza-like illness were tested for EV-D68. In secondary care 55 EV-D68 cases were detected. Among those, 45 cases had clinical information available and 89% (40/45) presented with severe respiratory symptoms. Detection of EV-D68 among patients in primary care increased from 0.4% (4/1074; 95% CI 0.1–1.0) (September 2013–January 2014) to 0.8% (11/1359; 95% CI 0.4–1.5) (September 2014–January 2015). Characterization of EV-D68 strains circulating in England since 2012 and up to winter 2014/2015 indicated that those strains were genetically similar to those detected in 2014 in USA. We recommend reinforcing enterovirus surveillance through screening respiratory samples of suspected cases.
We summarise the first year of operation of the Medium Deep Survey - a key project of the HST. Two fields in the LMC are discussed and some preliminary scientific results presented. We also comment on image deconvolution for the extragalactic fields observed as part of the Medium Deep Survey.
With HST and WFPC2, galaxies in the Medium Deep Survey can be reliably classified to magnitudes I814 ≲ 22.0 in the F814W band, at a mean redshift . The main result is the relatively high proportion (~40%) of objects which are in some way irregular or anomalous, and which are of relevance in understanding the origin of the familiar excess population of faint galaxies. These diverse objects include compact galaxies, apparently interacting pairs, galaxies with superluminous starforming regions and diffuse low surface brightness galaxies of various forms. The ‘irregulars’ and ‘peculiar’ galaxies contribute most of the excess counts in the I-band at our limiting magnitude, and may explain the ‘faint blue galaxy’ problem.
Seasonal respiratory infections place an increased burden on health services annually. We used a sentinel emergency department syndromic surveillance system to understand the factors driving respiratory attendances at emergency departments (EDs) in England. Trends in different respiratory indicators were observed to peak at different points during winter, with further variation observed in the distribution of attendances by age. Multiple linear regression analysis revealed acute respiratory infection and bronchitis/bronchiolitis ED attendances in patients aged 1–4 years were particularly sensitive indicators for increasing respiratory syncytial virus activity. Using near real-time surveillance of respiratory ED attendances may provide early warning of increased winter pressures in EDs, particularly driven by seasonal pathogens. This surveillance may provide additional intelligence about different categories of attendance, highlighting pressures in particular age groups, thereby aiding planning and preparation to respond to acute changes in EDs, and thus the health service in general.
Several private boarding schools in England have established universal influenza vaccination programmes for their pupils. We evaluated the impact of these programmes on the burden of respiratory illnesses in boarders. Between November 2013 and May 2014, age-specific respiratory disease incidence rates in boarders were compared between schools offering and not offering influenza vaccine to healthy boarders. We adjusted for age, sex, school size and week using negative binomial regression. Forty-three schools comprising 14 776 boarders participated. Almost all boarders (99%) were aged 11–17 years. Nineteen (44%) schools vaccinated healthy boarders against influenza, with a mean uptake of 48·5% (range 14·2–88·5%). Over the study period, 1468 respiratory illnesses were reported in boarders (5·66/1000 boarder-weeks); of these, 33 were influenza-like illnesses (ILIs, 0·26/1000 boarder-weeks) in vaccinating schools and 95 were ILIs (0·74/1000 boarder-weeks) in non-vaccinating schools. The impact of vaccinating healthy boarders was a 54% reduction in ILI in all boarders [rate ratio (RR) 0·46, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0·28–0·76]. Disease rates were also reduced for upper respiratory tract infections (RR 0·72, 95% CI 0·61–0·85) and chest infections (RR 0·18, 95% CI 0·09–0·36). These findings demonstrate a significant impact of influenza vaccination on ILI and other clinical endpoints in secondary-school boarders. Additional research is needed to investigate the impact of influenza vaccination in non-boarding secondary-school settings.
General Practitioner consultation rates for influenza-like illness (ILI) are monitored through several geographically distinct schemes in the UK, providing early warning to government and health services of community circulation and intensity of activity each winter. Following on from the 2009 pandemic, there has been a harmonization initiative to allow comparison across the distinct existing surveillance schemes each season. The moving epidemic method (MEM), proposed by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control for standardizing reporting of ILI rates, was piloted in 2011/12 and 2012/13 along with the previously proposed UK method of empirical percentiles. The MEM resulted in thresholds that were lower than traditional thresholds but more appropriate as indicators of the start of influenza virus circulation. The intensity of the influenza season assessed with the MEM was similar to that reported through the percentile approach. The MEM pre-epidemic threshold has now been adopted for reporting by each country of the UK. Further work will continue to assess intensity of activity and apply standardized methods to other influenza-related data sources.
The prognostic value of subjective memory complaints (SMCs) in the diagnosis of dementia of the Alzheimer's type is unclear. While some studies have found an association between SMCs and cognitive decline, many have found a stronger association with depression, which raises questions about their diagnostic utility.
We examined the cross-sectional association between SMC severity (as measured using the MAC-Q, a brief SMC questionnaire) and affect, memory, and Alzheimer's disease (AD) biomarkers (β-amyloid deposition and the apolipoprotein E ε4 (APOEε4) allele) in healthy elderly controls (HC; M = 78.74 years, SD = 6.7) and individuals with mild cognitive impairment (MCI; M = 72.74 years, SD = 8.8). We analyzed a subset of individuals drawn from the Australian Imaging Biomarkers and Lifestyle (AIBL) Study of Aging.
SMCs were more severe in MCI patients than in HCs. SMC severity was related to affective variables and the interaction between age and group membership (HC/MCI). Within the HC group, SMC severity was related to affective variables only, while severity correlated only with age in the MCI group. SMCs were not related to cognitive variables or AD biomarkers.
SMCs were related to solely by poorer mood (greater depressive and anxious symptomatology) in the cognitively healthy elderly however mean levels were subclinical. This finding argues for the assessment of affective symptomatology in conjunction with cognitive assessment in elderly memory complainers. Future AIBL research will focus on assessing other AD biomarkers, such as brain atrophy and Aβ plasma markers, in relation to complaint severity. Once our 36-month follow-up data are collected, we propose to assess whether SMCs can predict future cognitive decline.
Three types of HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND) exist that are distinguished by presence and severity of impairment in cognitive and everyday functioning. Although well-validated neurocognitive measures exist, determining impairment in everyday functioning remains a challenge. We aim to determine whether Self-Report measures of everyday functioning are as effective in characterizing HAND as Performance-Based measures. We assessed 674 HIV-infected participants with a comprehensive neurocognitive battery; 233 met criteria for a HAND diagnosis by having at least mild neurocognitive impairment. Functional decline was measured via Self-Report and Performance-Based measures. HAND diagnoses were determined according to published criteria using three approaches to assess functional decline: (1) Self-Report measures only, (2) Performance-Based measures only, and (3) Dual-method combining Self-Report and Performance-Based measures. The Dual-method classified the most symptomatic HAND, compared to either singular method. Singular method classifications were 76% concordant with each other. Participants classified as Performance-Based functionally impaired were more likely to be unemployed and more immunosuppressed, whereas those classified as Self-Report functionally impaired had more depressive symptoms. Multimodal methods of assessing everyday functioning facilitate detection of symptomatic HAND. Singular Performance-Based classifications were associated with objective functional and disease-related factors; reliance on Self-Report classifications may be biased by depressive symptoms. (JINS, 2012, 18, 79–88)
We summarise recent progress in understanding the star formation activity in early-type galaxies (ETGs), using recent studies that leverage photometry in the rest-frame ultraviolet (UV) wavelengths. While classically thought to be old, passively-evolving systems, recent UV studies have revealed widespread star formation in ETGs, with ~20% of the stellar mass in today's ETGs forming at late epochs (z < 1). A strong correlation is found between the presence of morphological disturbances and blue UV colours, suggesting that the star formation is merger-driven. However, the major merger rate at late epochs is far too low to satisfy the number of disturbed ETGs, indicating that minor mergers drive the star formation in these galaxies over the latter half of cosmic time. Together with the recent literature which suggests that minor mergers may drive the size evolution of massive ETGs, these results highlight the significant role of minor mergers in driving the evolution of massive galaxies in the low and intermediate-redshift Universe.
Polarized X-ray absorption studies have been carried out at the Cu K-edge to study the effect of Sr doping in La2CuO4 and oxygen doping in YBa2Cu3O6+x. These measurements help to elucidate the transitions giving rise to the absorption edges. We offer an explanation of the polarization shifts of features in terms of the results of our embedded cluster calculations of electronic structure.
A novel thin film processing technique has been developed for the fabrication of ultrathin films of conducting polymers with angstrom-level control over thickness and multilayer architecture. Molecular self-assembly of in-situ polymerized conjugated polymers consists of a layer-by-layer process in which a substrate is alternately dipped into a solution of a p-doped conducting polymer (e.g. polypyrrole, polyaniline) and a solution of a polyanion. In-situ oxidative polymerization produces the more highly conductive, underivatized form of the conjugated polymer, which is deposited in a single layer of precisely controlled thickness (30 to 60 Å). The thickness of each layer can be fine-tuned by adjusting the dipping time and the solution chemistry. The surface chemistry of the substrate (e.g. hydrophobic, charged, etc.) also strongly influences the deposition, thereby making it possible to selectively deposit conducting polypyrrole onto well defined regions of the substrates. Typical multilayer films exhibit conductivities in the range of 20–50 S/cm, but samples with conductivities as high as 300 S/cm have been realized. There is no limit to the number of layers that can be built up nor to the complexity of the multilayer architecture of the film; achieved simply by alternating the sequence of dips into solutions of various polycations and polyanions. This new self-assembly process opens up vast possibilities in applications which require large area, ultrathin films of conducting polymers and, more importantly, in applications that can take advantage of the unique interactions achievable in the complex, supermolecular architectures of multilayer films.
We report theoretical studies on oxygen excess defect structure of lanthanum cuprate, La2CuO4+δ, using the Local Density formalism. The self-consistent Discrete Variational method has been used to find energy levels, densities of states, charge transfer, wavefunctions and potentials for a fragment consisting of N atoms embedded in the infinite crystal. Various possible interstitial oxygen positions and relative stability have been studied, including the structure suggested by Chaillout, et al. on the basis of neutron diffraction. Calculated electronic structures have been used to predict defect-related spectroscopic consequences.
A series of investigations have been conducted into the properties of N2O silicon oxynitride gate dielectrics, and the various methods of their growth. One of the principle advantages of these oxides is their resistance to interface state generation. This is linked to the presense of nitrogen near the substrate interface, where it is triply bonded to silicon. It is also demonstrated that during N2O-based furnace growth, the total concentration of NOx species varies strongly with the flow rate of N2O. This has been correlated to the temperature profile of the furnace, which can be affected by the exothermic decomposition of N2O. This property has been exploited to controllably adjust the rate of nitrogen incorporation by up to a factor of three. Although nitrogen incorporation during furnace processing is generally stable, it is shown that atomic oxygen is capable of removing previously incorporated nitrogen. Sources of atomic oxygen include the decomposition of N2O during RTP treatment, N2O processing in a high flow rate furnace, or from ozone annealing.
The heteroepitaxial nucleation and eventual growth of large area single crystal diamond films has long eluded researchers interested in tapping it's many enabling properties, specifically in the field of active electronics. The uncertainty surrounding the diamond nucleation mechanism(s) and corresponding inability to carefully control this process are often blamed for the difficulty in achieving true heteroepitaxial growth. Biasenhanced nucleation (BEN) has been shown to provide in-situ control of the nucleation process. Subsequent advancements in both nucleation and deposition stages has resulted in highly oriented diamond films, approaching single crystal quality yet still plagued by arrays of medium to low angle grain boundaries that can degrade the electronic transport properties. To further improve upon these results and achieve large area, single crystal films it is believed that development must focus on the more fundamental problems of diamond nucleation. This paper presents a review of recent progress pertaining to the bias-enhanced process and focuses on data specific to the epitaxial nucleation dilemma.
Hydroxyapatite coatings have been widely recognized for their biocompatibility and utility in promoting biointegration of implants in both osseous and soft tissue. Conventional sputtering techniques have shown some advantages over the commercially available plasma spraying method; however, the as-sputtered coatings are usually non-stoichiometric and amorphous which can cause some serious problems such as poor adhesion and excessive coating dissolution rate. A versatile right-angle radio frequency magnetron sputtering (RAMS) approach has been developed to deposit HA coatings on various substrates at low power levels. Using this alternative magnetron geometry, as-sputtered HA coatings are nearly stoichiometric, highly crystalline, and strongly bound to the substrate, as evidenced by analyses using x-ray diffraction (XRD), atomic force microscopy (AFM), x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). In particular, coatings deposited on oriented substrates show a polycrystalline XRD pattern but with some strongly preferred orientations, indicating that HA crystallization is sensitive to the nature of the substrate. Post deposition heat treatment under high temperature does not result in a marked improvement in the degree of crystallinity of the coatings. To study the biocompatibility of these coatings, murine osteoblast cells were seeded onto various substrates. Cell density counts using fluorescence microscopy show that the best osteoblast proliferation is achieved on an HA RAMS-coated titanium substrate. These experiments demonstrate that RAMS is a promising coating technique for biomedical applications.
We describe two new beamlines for radiation effects research at the Indiana University Cyclotron Facility. Protons with energies up to 205 MeV are available. One of the beamlines offers momentum selected beams at energies as low as 52 MeV.
Only by incorporating various forms of feedback can theories of galaxy formation reproduce the present-day luminosity function of galaxies. It has also been argued that such feedback processes might explain the counterintuitive behaviour of ‘downsizing’ witnessed since redshifts z ≈ 1 − 2. To examine this question, observations spanning 0.4 < z < 1.4 from the DEEP2/Palomar survey (Bundy et al. 2006) are compared with a suite of equivalent mock observations derived from the Millennium Simulation, populated with galaxies using the Galform code (Bower et al. 2006).
The mock galaxy samples are generated from the population of dark matter halos in the Millennium Simulation (Springel et al. 2005). This simulation consists of approximately 10 billion dark matter particles each of mass 8.6 × 108h−1M⊙ evolving in a cubic volume of side 500h−1 Mpc, assuming a ∧CDM cosmology.
Dark matter halo merger trees are found from this 4-volume using the methods described by Harker et al. (2006). The lowest mass halos contained in these trees, of which there are about 20 million, consist of 20 particles corresponding to a total mass of 5 × 109h−1M⊙. Such halos could contain at most 9 × 108h−1M⊙ of baryonic material, which is well below the lower limit of the stellar mass functions to be considered in this work. Therefore we do not expect the resolution of the Millennium Simulation to affect our results.
A study of stool Escherichia coli in 60 children with gastroenteritis and 18 control children was carried out in Auckland, New Zealand in 1977. Toxigenic strains, heat labile and heat stable, predominated in the stools of only three children, all of whom had concomitant rotavirus. Classical enteropathogenic E. coli (EPEC) were found in patients and controls. Only one patient had many EPEC in the stool (086. H2), they were variably toxigenic and rotavirus was also present. No toxigenic serotype was isolated. Two potential pathogens were sometimes found. Overall there was no evidence for a substantial causative role for disease producing E. coli in these children.