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The science of studying diamond inclusions for understanding Earth history has developed significantly over the past decades, with new instrumentation and techniques applied to diamond sample archives revealing the stories contained within diamond inclusions. This chapter reviews what diamonds can tell us about the deep carbon cycle over the course of Earth’s history. It reviews how the geochemistry of diamonds and their inclusions inform us about the deep carbon cycle, the origin of the diamonds in Earth’s mantle, and the evolution of diamonds through time.
The spray drying of powders is a method of forming spherical or torroidal shaped agglomerates. A relatively simple method is given for preparing spray dried samples of the quantities used in x-ray diffraction analysis. This technique is shown to minimize preferred orientation effects on diffraction intensities from materials of widely differing symmetry and crystallite habit.
Spray drying is shown to be an effective and rapid method for preparing samples for quantitative analysis by x-ray powder diffraction. Previously intractable problems like the simultaneous analysis of multiple phases in orientation prone systems can be carried out. Using this method, and a computer controlled diffractometer, five and six phase analyses of Devonian shales can be accomplished in approximately forty minutes. A rapid and convenient method for using the absorption diffraction technique for x-ray quantitative analysis is described.
Varroa destructor mites (Acari: Varroidae) are harmful ectoparasites of Apis mellifera honey bees. Female foundresses of wax-capped pupal host cells and their daughters feed on host fluids from open wounds on the host's integument. Details of V. destructor mite nutrition are forthcoming, and little is known about the potential physical effects on hosts from mite feeding. Chemical analysis of waste excretions can infer details of animals’ nutrition. Here, chemical analysis by high-performance liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry (HPLC-MS/MS) of mite excretions showed that the purine content of V. destructor waste consists of guanine with traces of hypoxanthine. Traces of uric acid and caffeine were also detected. Concentrations of guanine attenuated over time and excretions collected from senescing mites did not contain detectable guanine. Non-reproducing individual female mites maintained in vitro, housed in gelatin capsules and provided a honey bee pupa, deposited an average of nearly 18 excretions daily, mostly on the host's integument rather than on the capsule wall. The weight and volume of excretions suggest mites can consume nearly a microlitre of host fluids each day. Compounded over 10 days, this together with open wounds, could lead to substantial water loss and stress to developing pupae.
In a large and comprehensively assessed sample of patients with bipolar disorder type I (BDI), we investigated the prevalence of psychotic features and their relationship with life course, demographic, clinical, and cognitive characteristics. We hypothesized that groups of psychotic symptoms (Schneiderian, mood incongruent, thought disorder, delusions, and hallucinations) have distinct relations to risk factors.
In a cross-sectional study of 1342 BDI patients, comprehensive demographical and clinical characteristics were assessed using the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV (SCID-I) interview. In addition, levels of childhood maltreatment and intelligence quotient (IQ) were assessed. The relationships between these characteristics and psychotic symptoms were analyzed using multiple general linear models.
A lifetime history of psychotic symptoms was present in 73.8% of BDI patients and included delusions in 68.9% of patients and hallucinations in 42.6%. Patients with psychotic symptoms showed a significant younger age of disease onset (β = −0.09, t = −3.38, p = 0.001) and a higher number of hospitalizations for manic episodes (F11 338 = 56.53, p < 0.001). Total IQ was comparable between groups. Patients with hallucinations had significant higher levels of childhood maltreatment (β = 0.09, t = 3.04, p = 0.002).
In this large cohort of BDI patients, the vast majority of patients had experienced psychotic symptoms. Psychotic symptoms in BDI were associated with an earlier disease onset and more frequent hospitalizations particularly for manic episodes. The study emphasizes the strength of the relation between childhood maltreatment and hallucinations but did not identify distinct subgroups based on psychotic features and instead reported of a large heterogeneity of psychotic symptoms in BD.
Older adults represent the highest proportion of gamblers (Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation [OLG], 2012). Unpartnered older adults may be more socially isolated and lonely (Dykstra & de Jong Gierveld, 2004), thus more likely to be at risk for problem gambling (McQuade & Gill, 2012). We examined whether gambling to socialize or from loneliness and going to the casino with friends/family mediate the relation between marital status and problem gambling. Data from a random sample of older adults at gambling venues across Southwestern Ontario indicated that gambling with family/friends and gambling due to loneliness mediated the relationship between marital status and problem gambling. Relative to those married, unpartnered older adults were less likely to gamble with family/friends, more likely to gamble due to loneliness, and had higher problem gambling. Prevention and treatment initiatives should examine ways to decrease loneliness and social isolation among older adults and offer alternative social activities.
Release methods can influence the outcome of reintroductions. We tested the effect of delayed, immediate and supplementary food/shelter release treatments on the reintroduction of brushtail possums Trichosurus vulpecula to an environment in which introduced predators, particularly foxes, were subject to control. Monitoring of 48 radio-collared possums over 3 months revealed that immediate release possums settled into a stable range significantly faster than other groups, but there were no differences in survival, dispersal distance, reproduction or body condition. Ten days after release possums from all treatment groups had lost body mass, but by day 60 most were heavier than at the time of translocation. After release, possums sometimes used shelter sites easily accessible to predators, but within 3 weeks they regularly selected safer shelter. Risky shelter selection and loss of condition immediately after release suggests that supplementary food and shelter could be beneficial, but supportive measures were rarely used or did not have the desired effect. In an environment with higher predator densities, risky shelter selection could lead to high post-release predation, and mass loss could encourage animals to forage in riskier ways, further increasing vulnerability. In these environments effective uptake of supplementary food and shelter could reduce predation risk, but supplementary measures would need to be presented in a way that maximises uptake. In contrast, if post-release predation risk is low then supportive measures may not be required. Innovative methods for providing post-release support should continue to be developed for reintroductions to areas where supportive measures are needed.
In September 2016, the annual meeting of the International Union for Quaternary Research’s Loess and Pedostratigraphy Focus Group, traditionally referred to as a LoessFest, met in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, USA. The 2016 LoessFest focused on “thin” loess deposits and loess transportation surfaces. This LoessFest included 75 registered participants from 10 countries. Almost half of the participants were from outside the United States, and 18 of the participants were students. This review is the introduction to the special issue for Quaternary Research that originated from presentations and discussions at the 2016 LoessFest. This introduction highlights current understanding and ongoing work on loess in various regions of the world and provides brief summaries of some of the current approaches/strategies used to study loess deposits.
Until now, data have not been available to elucidate the genetic and environmental sources of comorbidity between all 10 DSM-IV personality disorders (PDs) and cocaine use. Our aim was to determine which PD traits are linked phenotypically and genetically to cocaine use. Cross-sectional data were obtained in a face-to-face interview between 1999 and 2004. Subjects were 1,419 twins (µage = 28.2 years, range = 19–36) from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health Twin Panel, with complete lifetime cocaine use and criteria for all 10 DSM-IV PDs. Stepwise multiple and Least Absolute Shrinkage and Selection Operator (LASSO) regressions were used to identify PDs related to cocaine use. Twin models were fitted to estimate genetic and environmental associations between the PD traits and cocaine use. In the multiple regression, antisocial (OR = 4.24, 95% CI [2.66, 6.86]) and borderline (OR = 2.19, 95% CI [1.35, 3.57]) PD traits were significant predictors of cocaine use. In the LASSO regression, antisocial, borderline, and histrionic were significant predictors of cocaine use. Antisocial and borderline PD traits each explained 72% and 25% of the total genetic risks in cocaine use, respectively. Genetic risks in histrionic PD were not significantly related to cocaine use. Importantly, after removing criteria referencing substance use, antisocial PD explained 65% of the total genetic variance in cocaine use, whereas borderline explained only 4%. Among PD traits, antisocial is the strongest correlate of cocaine use, for which the association is driven largely by common genetic risks.
Angiogenesis is a critical component during wound healing, and the process is sensitive to mechanical stimuli. Current in vitro culture environments used to investigate three-dimensional microvascular growth often lack dimensional stability and the ability to withstand compression. We investigated the ability of decorin (DCN), a proteoglycan known to modulate collagen fibrillogenesis, incorporated into a collagen hydrogel to increase construct dimensional stability while maintaining vascular growth. DCN did not affect microvascular growth parameters, while increasing the compressive modulus of collagen gels and significantly reducing the contraction of 3% collagen gels after 16 days in culture.
It is increasingly essential for medical researchers to be literate in statistics, but the requisite degree of literacy is not the same for every statistical competency in translational research. Statistical competency can range from ‘fundamental’ (necessary for all) to ‘specialized’ (necessary for only some). In this study, we determine the degree to which each competency is fundamental or specialized.
We surveyed members of 4 professional organizations, targeting doctorally trained biostatisticians and epidemiologists who taught statistics to medical research learners in the past 5 years. Respondents rated 24 educational competencies on a 5-point Likert scale anchored by ‘fundamental’ and ‘specialized.’
There were 112 responses. Nineteen of 24 competencies were fundamental. The competencies considered most fundamental were assessing sources of bias and variation (95%), recognizing one’s own limits with regard to statistics (93%), identifying the strengths, and limitations of study designs (93%). The least endorsed items were meta-analysis (34%) and stopping rules (18%).
We have identified the statistical competencies needed by all medical researchers. These competencies should be considered when designing statistical curricula for medical researchers and should inform which topics are taught in graduate programs and evidence-based medicine courses where learners need to read and understand the medical research literature.
We examined two potentially interacting, connected pathways by which parental supportiveness during early adolescence (ages 1–13) may come to be associated with later African American young adult smoking. The first pathway is between parental supportiveness and young adult stress (age 19), with stress, in turn, predicting increased smoking at age 20. The second pathway is between supportive parenting and tumor necrosis factor (TNF) gene methylation (i.e., TNFm), a proinflammatory epitype, with low levels indicating greater inflammatory potential and forecasting increased risk for smoking in response to young adult stress. In a sample of 382 African American youth residing in rural Georgia, followed from early adolescence (age 10–11) to young adulthood (age 20), supportive parenting indirectly predicted smoking via associations with young adult stress, IE = –0.071, 95% confidence interval [–0.132, –0.010]. In addition, supportive parenting was associated with TNFm measured at age 20 (r = .177, p = .001). Further, lower TNFm was associated with a significantly steeper slope (b = 0.583, p = .003) of increased smoking in response to young adult stress compared to those with higher TNFm (b = 0.155, p = .291), indicating an indirect, amplifying role for supportive parenting via TNFm. The results suggest that supportive parenting in early adolescence may play a role in understanding the emergence of smoking in young adulthood.
Building upon various lines of research, we posited that methylation of the oxytocin receptor gene (OXTR) would mediate the effect of adult adversity on increased commitment to negative schemas and in turn the development of depression. We tested our model using structural equation modeling and longitudinal data from a sample of 100 middle-aged, African American women. The results provided strong support for the model. Analysis of the 12 CpG sites available for the promoter region of the OXTR gene identified four factors. One of these factors was related to the study variables, whereas the others were not. This factor mediated the effect of adult adversity on schemas relating to pessimism and distrust, and these schemas, in turn, mediated the impact of OXTR methylation on depression. All indirect effects were statistically significant, and they remained significant after controlling for childhood trauma, age, romantic relationship status, individual differences in cell types, and average level of genome-wide methylation. These finding suggest that epigenetic regulation of the oxytocin system may be a mechanism whereby the negative cognitions central to depression become biologically embedded.
In western Canada, more money is spent on wild oat herbicides than on any
other weed species, and wild oat resistance to herbicides is the most
widespread resistance issue. A direct-seeded field experiment was conducted
from 2010 to 2014 at eight Canadian sites to determine crop life cycle, crop
species, crop seeding rate, crop usage, and herbicide rate combination
effects on wild oat management and canola yield. Combining 2× seeding rates
of early-cut barley silage with 2× seeding rates of winter cereals and
excluding wild oat herbicides for 3 of 5 yr (2011 to 2013) often led to
similar wild oat density, aboveground wild oat biomass, wild oat seed
density in the soil, and canola yield as a repeated canola–wheat rotation
under a full wild oat herbicide rate regime. Wild oat was similarly well
managed after 3 yr of perennial alfalfa without wild oat herbicides.
Forgoing wild oat herbicides in only 2 of 5 yr from exclusively summer
annual crop rotations resulted in higher wild oat density, biomass, and seed
banks. Management systems that effectively combine diverse and optimal
cultural practices against weeds, and limit herbicide use, reduce selection
pressure for weed resistance to herbicides and prolong the utility of
threatened herbicide tools.
The 2010 American Heart Association Guidelines stress the importance of high quality cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) as a predictor of survival from cardiac arrest. However, resuscitation training is often facilitated and evaluated by instructors without access to objective measures of CPR quality. This study aims to determine whether instructors experienced in the area of adult resuscitation (emergency department staff and senior residents) can accurately assess the quality of chest compressions as a component of their global assessment of a simulated resuscitation scenario.
This is a prospective observational study in which objective chest compression quality data (rate, depth, and fraction) were collected from the simulation manikin and compared to subjective instructor assessment. Data were collected during weekly simulation training sessions for residents, medical students, and nursing students.
We included data from 24 simulated resuscitation scenarios assessed by 1 of 15 instructors. Subjective assessment of chest compression quality identified an adequate compression rate (100–120 compressions per minute) with a sensitivity of 0.17 (confidence interval [CI] 0.02–0.32) and specificity of 0.06 (CI −0.04–0.15), adequate depth (>50 mm) with a sensitivity of 0 and specificity of 0.38 (CI 0.18–0.57), and adequate fraction (>80%) with a sensitivity of 1 and a specificity of 0.25 (CI 0.08–0.42).
Instructor assessment of chest compression rate, depth, and fraction demonstrates poor sensitivity and specificity when compared to the data from the simulation manikin. These results support the use of objective and technologically supported measures of chest compression quality for feedback during resuscitation education using simulators.
Magnetic resonance imaging studies of maltreated children with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) suggest that maltreatment-related PTSD is associated with adverse brain development. Maltreated youth resilient to chronic PTSD were not previously investigated and may elucidate neuromechanisms of the stress diathesis that leads to resilience to chronic PTSD. In this cross-sectional study, anatomical volumetric and corpus callosum diffusion tensor imaging measures were examined using magnetic resonance imaging in maltreated youth with chronic PTSD (N = 38), without PTSD (N = 35), and nonmaltreated participants (n = 59). Groups were sociodemographically similar. Participants underwent assessments for strict inclusion/exclusion criteria and psychopathology. Maltreated youth with PTSD were psychobiologically different from maltreated youth without PTSD and nonmaltreated controls. Maltreated youth with PTSD had smaller posterior cerebral and cerebellar gray matter volumes than did maltreated youth without PTSD and nonmaltreated participants. Cerebral and cerebellar gray matter volumes inversely correlated with PTSD symptoms. Posterior corpus callosum microstructure in pediatric maltreatment-related PTSD differed compared to maltreated youth without PTSD and controls. The group differences remained significant when controlling for psychopathology, numbers of Axis I disorders, and trauma load. Alterations of these posterior brain structures may result from a shared trauma-related mechanism or an inherent vulnerability that mediates the pathway from chronic PTSD to comorbidity.