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OBJECTIVES/SPECIFIC AIMS: Objectives and goals of this study will be to: (1) compare fecal microbiota and fecal organic acids in irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) patients and controls and (2) investigate the association between colonic transit and fecal microbiota in IBS patients and controls. METHODS/STUDY POPULATION: We propose an investigation of fecal organic acids, colonic transit and fecal microbiota in 36 IBS patients and 18 healthy controls. The target population will be adults ages 18–65 years meeting Rome IV criteria for IBS (both diarrhea- and constipation-predominant, IBS-D and IBS-C) and asymptomatic controls. Exclusion criteria are: (a) history of microscopic colitis, inflammatory bowel disease, celiac disease, visceral cancer, chronic infectious disease, immunodeficiency, uncontrolled thyroid disease, liver disease, or elevated AST/ALT>2.0× the upper limit of normal, (b) prior radiation therapy of the abdomen or abdominal surgeries with the exception of appendectomy or cholecystectomy >6 months before study initiation, (c) ingestion of prescription, over the counter, or herbal medications affecting gastrointestinal transit or study interpretation within 6 months of study initiation for controls or within 2 days before study initiation for IBS patients, (d) pregnant females, (e) antibiotic usage within 3 months before study participation, (f) prebiotic or probiotic usage within the 2 weeks before study initiation, (g) tobacco users. Primary outcomes will be fecal bile acid excretion and profile, short-chain fatty acid excretion and profile, colonic transit, and fecal microbiota. Secondary outcomes will be stool characteristics based on responses to validated bowel diaries. Stool samples will be collected from participants during the last 2 days of a 4-day 100 g fat diet and split into 3 samples for fecal microbiota, SCFA, and bile acid analysis and frozen. Frozen aliquots will be shipped to the Metabolite Profiling Facility at Purdue University and the Mayo Clinic Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology for SCFA and bile acid measurements, respectively. Analysis of fecal microbiota will be performed in the research laboratory of Dr David Nelson in collaboration with bioinformatics expertise affiliated with the Nelson lab. Colonic transit time will be measured with the previously validated method using radio-opaque markers. Generalized linear models will be used as the analysis framework for comparing study endpoints among groups. RESULTS/ANTICIPATED RESULTS: This study seeks to examine the innovative concept that specific microbial signatures are associated with increased fecal excretion of organic acids to provide unique insights on a potential mechanistic link between altered intraluminal organic acids and fecal microbiota. DISCUSSION/SIGNIFICANCE OF IMPACT: Results may lead to development of targets for novel therapies and diagnostic biomarkers for IBS, emphasizing the role of the fecal metabolome.
In this article, we evaluate the usefulness of Google Consumer Surveys (GCS) as a low-cost tool for doing rigorous social scientific work. We find that its relative strengths and weaknesses make it most useful to researchers who attempt to identify causality through randomization to treatment groups rather than selection on observables. This finding stems, in part, from the fact that the real cost advantage of GCS over other alternatives is limited to short surveys with a small number of questions. Based on our replication of four canonical social scientific experiments and one study of treatment heterogeneity, we find that the platform can be used effectively to achieve balance across treatment groups, explore treatment heterogeneity, include manipulation checks, and that the provided inferred demographics may be sufficiently sound for weighting and explorations of heterogeneity. Crucially, we successfully managed to replicate the usual directional finding in each experiment. Overall, GCS is likely to be a useful platform for survey experimentalists.
This article reports on the fourth stage of an evolving study to develop a systems model for embedding education for sustainability (EfS) into preservice teacher education. The fourth stage trialled the extension of the model to a comprehensive state-wide systems approach involving representatives from all eight Queensland teacher education institutions and other key policy agencies and professional associations. Support for trialling the model included regular meetings among the participating representatives and an implementation guide. This article describes the first three stages of developing and trialling the model before presenting the case study and action research methods employed, four key lessons learned from the project, and the implications of the major outcomes for teacher education policies and practices. The Queensland-wide, multi-site case study revealed processes and strategies that can enable institutional change agents to engage productively in building capacity for embedding EfS at the individual, institutional, and state levels in preservice teacher education. Collectively, the project components provide a system-wide framework that offers strategies, examples, insights, and resources that can serve as a model for other states and/or territories wishing to implement EfS in a systematic and coherent fashion.
The first research symposium, organised in conjunction with the Australian Association for Environmental Education (AAEE) biennial conference, began with a dialogue between scholars at three different academic career stages. As we all entered the field at different periods in its development, the first part of our presentation and this article provide our perspectives on the context, approaches and issues that characterised the field at the time we became involved in environmental education (EE) and EE research. The second part of this article presents the lessons we have learnt from EE research, and where we see the field headed in the future.
Manifera talaris, a voltzian conifer from the late early to middle Permian (ca. 270 Ma) of Texas, is the earliest known conifer to produce winged seeds indicative of autorotating flight. In contrast to autorotating seeds and fruits of extant plants, the ones of M. talaris are exceptional in that they have variable morphology. They bore two wings that produced a range of wing configurations, from seeds with two equal-sized wings to single-winged specimens, via various stages of underdevelopment of one of the wings. To examine the effects of various seed morphologies on aerodynamics and dispersal potential, we studied the flight performance of paper models of three morphotypes: symmetric double-winged, asymmetric double-winged, and single-winged. Using a high-speed camera we identified the mode of descent (plummeting, gliding, autorotation) and quantified descent speed, autorotation frequency, and other flight characteristics. To validate such modeling as an inferential tool, we compared descent of extant analogues (kauri; Agathis australis) with descent of similarly constructed seed models. All three seed morphotypes exhibited autorotating flight behavior. However, double-winged seeds, especially symmetric ones, failed to initiate slow autorotative descent more frequently than single-winged seeds. Even when autorotating, symmetric double-winged seeds descend faster than asymmetric double-winged ones, and descent is roughly twice as fast compared to single-winged seeds. Moreover, the relative advantage that (effectively) single-winged seeds have in slowing descent during autorotation becomes larger as seed weight increases. Hence, the range in seed wing configurations in M. talaris produced a wide variation in potential dispersal capacity. Overall, our results indicate that the evolutionarily novel autorotating winged seeds must have improved conifer seed dispersal, in a time when animal vectors for dispersion were virtually absent. Because of the range in wing configuration, the early evolution of autorotative flight in conifers was a functionally imperfect one, which provides us insight into the evolutionary developmental biology of autorotative seeds in conifers.
Central line–associated bloodstream infection (BSI) rates are a key quality metric for comparing hospital quality and safety. Traditional BSI surveillance may be limited by interrater variability. We assessed whether a computer-automated method of central line–associated BSI detection can improve the validity of surveillance.
Retrospective cohort study.
Eight medical and surgical intensive care units (ICUs) in 4 academic medical centers.
Traditional surveillance (by hospital staff) and computer algorithm surveillance were each compared against a retrospective audit review using a random sample of blood culture episodes during the period 2004–2007 from which an organism was recovered. Episode-level agreement with audit review was measured with κ statistics, and differences were assessed using the test of equal κ coefficients. Linear regression was used to assess the relationship between surveillance performance (κ) and surveillance-reported BSI rates (BSIs per 1,000 central line–days).
We evaluated 664 blood culture episodes. Agreement with audit review was significantly lower for traditional surveillance (κ [95% confidence interval (CI)] = 0.44 [0.37–0.51]) than computer algorithm surveillance (κ [95% CI] [0.52–0.64]; P = .001). Agreement between traditional surveillance and audit review was heterogeneous across ICUs (P = .001); furthermore, traditional surveillance performed worse among ICUs reporting lower (better) BSI rates (P = .001). In contrast, computer algorithm performance was consistent across ICUs and across the range of computer-reported central line–associated BSI rates.
Compared with traditional surveillance of bloodstream infections, computer automated surveillance improves accuracy and reliability, making interfacility performance comparisons more valid.
Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol 2014;35(12):1483–1490
This short novel, published in 1886 by Robert Louis Stevenson (1850–94), may well be more familiar in its many stage, film and television adaptations than in its original form, while 'Jekyll and Hyde' has become the shorthand for a character who seems to have a 'split personality'. Stevenson claimed that the main features of the story came to him in a dream, and he wrote it very rapidly, though ill and bedridden at the time. Priced at one shilling (the genre of macabre and horror stories was known as the 'shilling shocker'), it was an immediate success. Though not the first of Stevenson's works to explore the notion of the divided self, in a period where increasing concern was felt about the possible negative sides of discoveries in both the physical and biological sciences, the story clearly struck a chord, and it has remained popular ever since.