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The occupation history of the Cahokia archaeological complex (ca. AD 1050–1400) has received significant academic attention for decades, but the subsequent repopulation of the region by indigenous peoples is poorly understood. This study presents demographic trends from a fecal stanol population reconstruction of Horseshoe Lake, Illinois, along with information from archaeological, historical, and environmental sources to provide an interpretation of post-Mississippian population change in the Cahokia region. Fecal stanol data indicate that the Cahokia region reached a population minimum by approximately AD 1400, regional population had rebounded by AD 1500, a population maximum was reached by AD 1650, and population declined again by AD 1700. The indigenous repopulation of the area coincides with environmental changes conducive to maize-based agriculture and bison-hunting subsistence practices of the Illinois Confederation. The subsequent regional depopulation corresponds to a complicated period of warfare, epidemic disease, Christianization, population movement, and environmental change in the eighteenth century. The recognition of a post-Mississippian indigenous population helps shape a narrative of Native American persistence over Native American disappearance.
Weaning is a critical transition phase in swine production in which piglets must cope with different stressors that may affect their health. During this period, the prophylactic use of antibiotics is still frequent to limit piglet morbidity, which raises both economic and public health concerns such as the appearance of antimicrobial-resistant microbes. With the interest of developing tools for assisting health and management decisions around weaning, it is key to provide robustness indexes that inform on the animals’ capacity to endure the challenges associated with weaning. This work aimed at developing a modelling approach for facilitating the quantification of piglet resilience to weaning. A total of 325 Large White pigs weaned at 28 days of age were monitored and further housed and fed conventionally during the post-weaning period without antibiotic administration. Body weight and diarrhoea scores were recorded before and after weaning, and blood was sampled at weaning and 1 week later for collecting haematological data. A dynamic model was constructed based on the Gompertz–Makeham law to describe live weight trajectories during the first 75 days after weaning, following the rationale that the animal response is partitioned in two time windows (a perturbation and a recovery window). Model calibration was performed for each animal. Our results show that the transition time between the two time windows, as well as the weight trajectories are characteristic for each individual. The model captured the weight dynamics of animals at different degrees of perturbation, with an average coefficient of determination of 0.99, and a concordance correlation coefficient of 0.99. The utility of the model is that it provides biologically meaningful parameters that inform on the amplitude and length of perturbation, and the rate of animal recovery. Our rationale is that the dynamics of weight inform on the capability of the animal to cope with the weaning disturbance. Indeed, there were significant correlations between model parameters and individual diarrhoea scores and haematological traits. Overall, the parameters of our model can be useful for constructing weaning robustness indexes by using exclusively the growth curves. We foresee that this modelling approach will provide a step forward in the quantitative characterisation of robustness.
The disease caused by the influenza virus is a global public health problem due to its high rates of morbidity and mortality. Thus, analysis of the information generated by epidemiological surveillance systems has vital importance for health decision making. A retrospective analysis was performed using data generated by the four molecular diagnostic laboratories of the Mexican Social Security Institute between 2010 and 2016. Demographics, influenza positivity, seasonality, treatment choices and vaccination status analyses were performed for the vaccine according to its composition for each season. In all cases, both the different influenza subtypes and different age groups were considered separately. The circulation of A/H1N1pdm09 (48.7%), influenza A/H3N2 (21.1%), influenza B (12.6%), influenza A not subtyped (11%) and influenza A/H1N1 (6.6%) exhibited well-defined annual seasonality between November and March, and there were significant increases in the number of cases every 2 years. An inadequate use of oseltamivir was determined in 38% of cases, and the vaccination status in general varied between 12.1 and 18.5% depending on the season. Our results provide current information about influenza in Mexico and demonstrate the need to update both operational case definitions and medical practice guidelines to reduce the inappropriate use of antibiotics and antivirals.
The present work aims to explore the tribological behavior of the laser texturing process with different patterns on a Co based alloy using a pulsed Nd: YAG laser. Different parameters such as peak power, speed and spot diameter of the laser were explored for the experimental setting. The microstructural analysis was performed using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) with energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS), X-ray diffraction (XRD), and nanoindentation tests. The influence of the different textured patterns of the tribological performance tested with a pin-on-disc tribometer under lubricated sliding condition was evaluated. The results showed that typical interdendritic structures in the as-cast CoCr alloy condition were refined due to the heat input and fast cooling rate during the laser treatment. The refined microstructure showed less volumetric loss resulting in a increment of wear resistance and a better tribological performance than as-cast alloy. The correlation among laser parameters, microstructural effect and their influence in wear resistance is discussed.
Large efforts have been deployed in developing methods to estimate methane emissions from cattle. For large scale applications, accurate and inexpensive methane predictors are required. Within a livestock precision farming context, the objective of this work was to integrate real-time data on animal feeding behaviour with an in silico model for predicting the individual dynamic pattern of methane emission in cattle. The integration of real-time data with a mathematical model to predict variables that are not directly measured constitutes a software sensor. We developed a dynamic parsimonious grey-box model that uses as predictor variables either dry matter intake (DMI) or the intake time (IT). The model is described by ordinary differential equations.
Model building was supported by experimental data of methane emissions from respiration chambers. The data set comes from a study with finishing beef steers (cross-bred Charolais and purebred Luing finishing). Dry matter intake and IT were recorded using feed bins. For research purposes, in this work, our software sensor operated off-line. That is, the predictor variables (DMI, IT) were extracted from the recorded data (rather than from an on-line sensor). A total of 37 individual dynamic patterns of methane production were analyzed. Model performance was assessed by concordance analysis between the predicted methane output and the methane measured in respiration chambers. The model predictors DMI and IT performed similarly with a Lin’s concordance correlation coefficient (CCC) of 0.78 on average. When predicting the daily methane production, the CCC was 0.99 for both DMI and IT predictors. Consequently, on the basis of concordance analysis, our model performs very well compared with reported literature results for methane proxies and predictive models. As IT measurements are easier to obtain than DMI measurements, this study suggests that a software sensor that integrates our in silico model with a real-time sensor providing accurate IT measurements is a viable solution for predicting methane output in a large scale context.
Based on the data from the Next Generation Virgo cluster Survey (NGVS), we statistically study the photometric properties of globular clusters (GCs), ultra-compact dwarfs (UCDs) and dwarf nuclei in the Virgo core (M87) region. We found an obvious negative color (g - z) gradient in GC system associate with M87, i.e. GCs in the outer regions are bluer. However, such color gradient does not exist in UCD system, neither in dwarf nuclei system around M87. In addition, we found that many UCDs are surrounded by extended, low surface brightness envelopes. The dwarf nuclei and UCDs show different spatial distributions from GCs, with dwarf nuclei and UCDs (especially for the UCDs with visible envelopes) lying at larger distances to the Virgo center. These results support the view that UCDs (at least for a fraction of UCDs) are more tied to dwarf nuclei than to GCs.
What is a good (useful) mathematical model in animal science? For models constructed for prediction purposes, the question of model adequacy (usefulness) has been traditionally tackled by statistical analysis applied to observed experimental data relative to model-predicted variables. However, little attention has been paid to analytic tools that exploit the mathematical properties of the model equations. For example, in the context of model calibration, before attempting a numerical estimation of the model parameters, we might want to know if we have any chance of success in estimating a unique best value of the model parameters from available measurements. This question of uniqueness is referred to as structural identifiability; a mathematical property that is defined on the sole basis of the model structure within a hypothetical ideal experiment determined by a setting of model inputs (stimuli) and observable variables (measurements). Structural identifiability analysis applied to dynamic models described by ordinary differential equations (ODEs) is a common practice in control engineering and system identification. This analysis demands mathematical technicalities that are beyond the academic background of animal science, which might explain the lack of pervasiveness of identifiability analysis in animal science modelling. To fill this gap, in this paper we address the analysis of structural identifiability from a practitioner perspective by capitalizing on the use of dedicated software tools. Our objectives are (i) to provide a comprehensive explanation of the structural identifiability notion for the community of animal science modelling, (ii) to assess the relevance of identifiability analysis in animal science modelling and (iii) to motivate the community to use identifiability analysis in the modelling practice (when the identifiability question is relevant). We focus our study on ODE models. By using illustrative examples that include published mathematical models describing lactation in cattle, we show how structural identifiability analysis can contribute to advancing mathematical modelling in animal science towards the production of useful models and, moreover, highly informative experiments via optimal experiment design. Rather than attempting to impose a systematic identifiability analysis to the modelling community during model developments, we wish to open a window towards the discovery of a powerful tool for model construction and experiment design.
Colonic effects of extruded whole-grain sorghum diets were evaluated using a model of growing rats. In all, twenty-four male Wistar rats were fed control (C), extruded white sorghum (EWS) or red sorghum (ERS). Consumption of sorghum diets showed satiety properties, with reduction of caecal pH, and lower activity of β-glucosidase and β-glucuronidase enzymes. Decreased copper zinc superoxide dismutase and manganese superoxide dismutase and increased catalase and glutathione peroxidase levels were observed in colonic mucosa. The induction of antioxidant enzymes occurred through the activation of the nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 protein and its subsequent translocation into the nucleus. ERS was able to decrease the proliferation of proximal mucosa of colon, demonstrating a possible effect against colorectal tumourigenesis. EWS increased proliferation and also apoptosis, ensuring the re-establishment of homoeostasis of the colonic mucosa. No antioxidant systemic effect (serum or hepatic level) was observed. It is likely that despite the extrusion the low bioavailability of the phenolic compounds of sorghum diets caused them to exert mainly acute effects at the colon level. Extruded whole-grain sorghum is a good functional ingredient that might be promising in dietary prevention of intestinal diseases.
The Brangus breed was developed to combine the superior characteristics of both of its founder breeds, Angus and Brahman. It combines the high adaptability to tropical and subtropical environments, disease resistance, and overall hardiness of Zebu cattle with the reproductive potential and carcass quality of Angus. It is known that the major histocompatibility complex (MHC, also known as bovine leucocyte antigen: BoLA), located on chromosome 23, encodes several genes involved in the adaptive immune response and may be responsible for adaptation to harsh environments. The objective of this work was to evaluate whether the local breed ancestry percentages in the BoLA locus of a Brangus population diverged from the estimated genome-wide proportions and to identify signatures of positive selection in this genomic region. For this, 167 animals (100 Brangus, 45 Angus and 22 Brahman) were genotyped using a high-density single nucleotide polymorphism array. The local ancestry analysis showed that more than half of the haplotypes (55.0%) shared a Brahman origin. This value was significantly different from the global genome-wide proportion estimated by cluster analysis (34.7% Brahman), and the proportion expected by pedigree (37.5% Brahman). The analysis of selection signatures by genetic differentiation (Fst) and extended haplotype homozygosity-based methods (iHS and Rsb) revealed 10 and seven candidate regions, respectively. The analysis of the genes located within these candidate regions showed mainly genes involved in immune response-related pathway, while other genes and pathways were also observed (cell surface signalling pathways, membrane proteins and ion-binding proteins). Our results suggest that the BoLA region of Brangus cattle may have been enriched with Brahman haplotypes as a consequence of selection processes to promote adaptation to subtropical environments.
Slaughter is a crucial step in the meat production chain that could induce psychological stress on each animal, resulting in a physiological response that can differ among individuals. The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between an animal’s emotional state, the subsequent psychological stress at slaughter and the cellular damage as an effect. In all, 36 entire male pigs were reared at an experimental farm and a cognitive bias test was used to classify them into positive bias (PB) or negative bias (NB) groups depending on their decision-making capabilities. Half of the animals, slaughtered in the same batch, were used for a complete study of biomarkers of stress, including brain neurotransmitters and some muscle biomarkers of oxidative stress. After slaughter, specific brain areas were excised and the levels of catecholamines (noradrenaline (NA) and dopamine (DA)) and indoleamines (5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid and serotonin (5HT)) were analyzed. In addition, muscle proteasome activity (20S), antioxidant defence (total antioxidant activity (TAA)), oxidative damage (lipid peroxidation (LPO)) and autophagy biomarkers (Beclin-1, microtubule-associated protein I light chain 3 (LC3-I) and LC3-II) were monitored during early postmortem maturation (0 to 24 h). Compared with PB animals, NB pigs were more susceptible to stress, showing higher 5HT levels (P<0.01) in the hippocampus and lower DA (P<0.001) in the pre-frontal cortex. Furthermore, NB pigs had more intense proteolytic processes and triggered primary muscle cell survival mechanisms immediately after slaughter (0 h postmortem), thus showing higher TAA (P<0.001) and earlier proteasome activity (P<0.001) and autophagy (Beclin-1, P<0.05; LC3-II/LC3-I, P<0.001) than PB pigs, in order to counteract the induced increase in oxidative stress, that was significantly higher in the muscle of NB pigs at 0 h postmortem (LPO, P<0.001). Our study is the first to demonstrate that pig’s cognitive bias influences the animal’s susceptibility to stress and has important effects on the postmortem muscle metabolism, particularly on the cell antioxidant defences and the autophagy onset. These results expand the current knowledge regarding biomarkers of animal welfare and highlight the potential use of biomarkers of the proteasome, the autophagy (Beclin-1, LC3-II/LC3-I ratio) and the muscle antioxidant defence (TAA, LPO) for detection of peri-slaughter stress.
Daytime restricted feeding (2 h of food access from 12.00 to 14.00 hours for 3 weeks) is an experimental protocol that modifies the relationship between metabolic networks and the circadian molecular clock. The precise anatomical locus that controls the biochemical and physiological adaptations to optimise nutrient use is unknown. We explored the changes in liver oxidative lipid handling, such as β-oxidation and its regulation, as well as adaptations in the lipoprotein profile. It was found that daytime restricted feeding promoted an elevation of circulating ketone bodies before mealtime, an altered hepatic daily rhythmicity of 14CO2 production from radioactive palmitic acid, and an up-regulation of the fatty acid oxidation activators, the α-subunit of AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), the deacetylase silent mating type information regulation homolog 1, and the transcriptional factor PPARγ-1α coactivator. An increased localisation of phosphorylated α-subunit of AMPK in the periportal hepatocytes was also observed. Liver hepatic lipase C, important for lipoprotein transformation, showed a change of daily phase with a peak at the time of food access. In serum, there was an increase of LDL, which was responsible for a net elevation of circulating cholesterol. We conclude that our results indicate an enhanced fasting response in the liver during daily synchronisation to food access, which involves altered metabolic and cellular control of fatty acid oxidation as well a significant elevation of serum LDL. These adaptations could be part of the metabolic input that underlies the expression of the food-entrained oscillator.
Two metal fillers with TiC nanoparticles (TiC NPs) of less than 100 nm for the overlay process is an alternative to hardfacing for treating surfaces subjected to severe wear. In this work, the effect of tribological behavior for TiC NPs addition on two Co-based filler materials, as well as the dilutions, was studied. Mixtures of Co-based filler metals without and with 0.5% and 2% TiC NPs were deposited onto D2 steel plates using PTA (Plasma Transferred Arc). The BET surface area was 0.17 m2 g-1 and 0.31 m2 g-1, respectively, for Stellite 6 and 12. The distribution of ca 23% macroporous for Stellite 6 was sufficient to get inside the TiC NPs, as well as in the case of Stellite 12, with a pore distribution of ca 13%. Stellite 12 has an increase in the dilutions (70%) and enthalpies showed endothermic reactions. Stellite 6 with NPs was determined to be most effective in increasing the wear resistance.
Entamoeba histolytica is the causative agent of amoebic liver abscess (ALA), which course with an uncontrolled inflammation and nitro-oxidative stresses, although it is well known that amoeba has an effective defence mechanisms against this toxic environment, the underlying molecular factors responsible for progression of tissue damage remain largely unknown. The purpose of the present study was to determine during the acute stage of ALA in hamsters, the involvement of nuclear factor (erythroid-derived 2)-like 2 (Nrf2) and nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB), which are activated in response to oxidative stress. From 12 h post-infection the ALA was visible, haematoxylin-eosin and Masson's trichrome stains were consistent with these observations, and alanine aminotransferase, alkaline phosphatase and γ-glutamyl transpeptidase serum activities were increased too. At 48 h after infection, liver glycogen content was significantly reduced. Western blot analyses showed that 4-Hydroxy-2-nonenal peaked at 12 h, while glycogen synthase kinase-3β, cleaved caspase-3, pNF-κB, interleukin-1β and tumour necrosis factor-α were overexpressed from 12 to 48 h post-infection. Otherwise, Nrf2 and superoxide dismutase-1, decreased at 48 h and catalase declined at 36 and 48 h. Furthermore, heme oxygenase-1 was increased at 12 and 24 h and decreased to normal levels at 36 and 48 h. These findings suggest for the first time that the host antioxidant system of Nrf2 is influenced during ALA.
The importance of PRE herbicide applications in cotton has increased since the evolution of glyphosate-resistant (GR) Palmer amaranth. Cotton producers are relying on residual herbicides for control of Palmer amaranth, as POST options are limited or ineffective. S-Metolachlor, acetochlor, fomesafen, and dicamba all provide PRE control of Palmer amaranth; however, little is known about the effect of irrigation rate on incorporation and herbicidal efficacy. In 2015, an experiment was conducted on fine sand and loamy sand soils to evaluate the influence of irrigation volume (0.0 to 12.7 mm ha−1) on Palmer amaranth control with PRE herbicides. Irrigation volume after herbicide application was significant for both S-metolachlor and acetochlor. Efficacy of S-metolachlor was greatest in plots receiving 6.4 and 12.7 mm of irrigation where Palmer amaranth biomass was reduced to 4 and 2% of a nontreated control (NTC), respectively, compared with 61% in plots with the 0-mm irrigation treatment. Palmer amaranth control by acetochlor incorporated at 3.2- to 12.7-mm irrigation did not differ but did reduce Palmer amaranth biomass compared with the 1.6-mm irrigation rate. Irrigation volume was not significant for the soil incorporation of fomesafen or dicamba. Across all herbicides, fomesafen-treated plots provided the most consistent control of Palmer amaranth, reducing its biomass to < 3% of NTC at all irrigation rates. Dicamba provided the least and most inconsistent control of Palmer amaranth, producing 17 to 51% of NTC biomass.
Diet and body mass are highly important factors in mammalian ecology, and they have also proven to be powerful paleoecological indicators. Our previous research has proposed a new classification scheme for mammals with more dietary divisions that emphasizes the primary resource in a given diet. We analyzed a database summarizing the dietary preferences of 139 species of marsupial and placental terrestrial mammals (including 14 orders) and their average body masses in order to explore whether this new classification better highlights ecomorphological differences between species. Additionally, the dietary diversity of every species in the data set was quantified by applying the inverse Simpson index to stomach content percentages. We observed a decrease in maximum dietary diversity with increasing body mass. Having lower requirements for energy and nutrients per unit of body weight or ecological advantages such as larger home ranges allows larger mammals to feed on less nutritive feeding resources (i.e., structural plant material). Our results also suggest that body-size ranges are different across dietary specializations. Smaller mammals (<1 kg) are mainly insectivores, granivores, or mixed feeders, while bigger animals (>30 kg) are usually either carnivores or herbivores that feed specifically on grasses and leaves. The medium-size range (1–30 kg) is mostly composed of frugivorous species that inhabit tropical and subtropical rain forests. Thus, the near absence of medium-sized mammals in open environments such as savannas can be linked to the decreasing density of fruit trees needed to support a pure frugivorous diet year-round. In other words, seasonality of precipitation prevents species from specializing on a totally frugivorous diet. Our results suggest that this new classification scheme correlates well with body mass, one of the most studied morphological variables in paleoecology and ecomorphology. Therefore, the classification should serve as a useful basis for future paleoclimatological studies.
Disk galaxies in cosmological numerical simulations grow by accreting gas from the cosmic web. This gas reaches the external disk, and then spirals in dragged along by tidal forces and/or disk instabilities. The importance of gas infall is as clear from numerical simulations as it is obscure to observations. Extremely metal poor (XMP) galaxies seem to be the best example we have of the gas accretion process at work. They have large off-center starbursts which show significant metallicity drop compared with the host galaxy. This observation is naturally explained as a gas accretion event caught in the act. We present preliminary results of the kinematical properties of the metal poor starbursts in XMPs, which suggest that the starbursts are kinematically decoupled entities within the host galaxy.
The synthesis of Fe3O4-Ag bimetallic nanoparticles by chemical reduction was carried out. Fe nanoparticles were obtained using Fe (III) Chloride hexahydrate (FeCl3•6H2O) as precursor and sodium borohydride (NaBH4) as reducing agent, subsequently, a solution of silver nitrate (AgNO3) was added to the reaction. The synthesis methodology employed in this case, is a modification of chemical reduction method. Through this procedure has been possible simplify the synthesis route used to obtain bimetallic systems such as Fe3O4-Ag. Particles with semi-spherical morphology were observed. High-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HREM), ultraviolet visible spectroscopy (UV-is) and quasi-elastic light scattering (QELS) techniques were employed for the structural characterization of Fe3O4-Ag nanostructures. Some models presented describe and prove the formation of the Fe3O4-Ag alloy type structures.
Chitin nanowhiskers were obtained with the purpose to be used as astaxanthin protectors against the photo and thermal degradation. These nanostructures were generated by a freezing/thawing procedure using two stirring methods: mechanical and sonication, which were named as FTM and FTS respectively. Morphological and spectroscopic studies were carried out on chitin nanowhiskers by scanning electronic microscopy (SEM) and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). Through a SEM analysis, chitin fibers were found uniformly spaced and oriented with the width ranged from of 20-40 nm. Furthermore, the nanowhiskers obtained by FTM showed long and flattened structures and bundles of homogeneous sizes, which have the capacity of being sites of stress concentration. In contrast, by FTS, the nanowhiskers showed coarse fibers exhibiting numerous peaks. By comparing the two methods is appreciated that FTS method provides more surface area, giving more sites for functionalization. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) allowed the determination of free movement of functional groups on the surface of samples obtained by FTM and FTS methods. Significant differences of signals in the spectra indicate that there were more unassociated amides in the nanowhiskers obtained by FTS than by FTM.
Magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) are a class of materials that can be manipulated under the influence of an external magnetic field. Thanks to the ability of the MNPs to be guided by an external magnetic field that is like "action at a distance", combined with their low cytotoxicity and the intrinsic penetrability of magnetic fields into human tissue, opens up many applications involving the transport and/or immobilization of biological entities [1, 2].
This work is focused on the synthesis of magnetite nanoparticles by varied methods, their functionalization with nickel tetrasulfonated phthalocyanine, and the corresponding physicochemical characterization and colloidal stability studies in biologically compatible media. The in vitro production of singlet oxygen by these nanoparticles through photochemical stimulation in ultraviolet and visible region was evaluated, resulting in 4.5 and 4 µM respectly to magnetite synthetized in the group. The increase reactive oxygen species concentration in the cellular environment can result in modification and damage of cellular components, and potentially, cell death and necrosis. Therefore, these materials offer the promise of revolutionary tools for photodynamic therapy and hyperthermia, which are attractive strategies for cancer therapy without systemic toxicity.
In this work, the deposition and photocatalytic response of V2O5 thin films modified with different amounts of Ag (Ag:V2O5) is reported. Films were deposited on glass and silicon substrates (100), using the pulsed laser deposition (PLD) technique. A high purity vanadium target, with a different number of silver pellets attached on it were used. Thin films were characterized by energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS) to determine the elemental chemical composition; structural changes due to the addition of Ag were monitored by Raman spectroscopy; Optical microscopy was used to observe the surface morphology and UV-Vis spectroscopy was employed to determine optical properties. Photocatalytic response of the prepared films was studied through the degradation of a malachite green solution using a solar irradiation source.