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Mycetoma is a chronic granulomatous, suppurative and progressive inflammatory disease that usually involves the subcutaneous tissue and bones after traumatic inoculation of the causative organism. In India, actinomycotic mycetoma is prevalent in south India, south-east Rajasthan and Chandigarh, while eumycetoma, which constitutes one third of the total cases, is mainly reported from north India and central Rajasthan. The objective was to determine the epidemiological profile and spectrum of eumycetoma from a tertiary care hospital in Delhi, North India. Thirty cases of eumycetoma were diagnosed by conventional methods of direct microscopy, culture and species-specific sequencing as per standard protocol. The spectrum of fungal pathogens included Exophiala jeanselmei, Madurella mycetomatis, Fusarium solani, Sarocladium kiliense, Acremonium blochii, Aspergillus nidulans, Fusarium incarnatum, Scedosporium apiospermum complex, Curvularia lunata and Medicopsis romeroi. Eumycetoma can be treated with antifungal therapy and needs to be combined with surgery. It has good prognosis if it is timely diagnosed and the correct species identified by culture for targeted therapy of these patients. Black moulds required prolonged therapy. Its low reporting and lack of familiarity may predispose patients to misdiagnosis and consequently delayed treatment. Hence health education and awareness campaign on the national and international level in the mycetoma belt is crucial.
Most reports on the outcome of children who present with heart failure, due to heart muscle disease, are from an era when ventricular assist devices were not available. This study provides outcome data for the current era where prolonged circulatory support can be considered for most children.
Methods & Results:
Data was retrieved on 100 consecutive children, who presented between 2010 – 2016, with a first diagnosis of unexplained heart failure. Hospital outcome was classified as either death, transplantation, recovery of function or persistent heart failure. Median age at presentation was 24 months and 58% were < 5 years old. Hospital mortality was 12% and 59% received a heart transplant. Most, 79%, of the transplants were carried out on patients with a device. Recovery of function was observed in 18% and 10% stabilised on oral therapy. Eighty-four percent of the deaths occurred in the <5 year old group. Shorter duration of support was associated with survival (34 days in survivors versus 106 in non-survivors, p = 0.01) and 72% were on an assist device at time of death.
Heart failure in children who require referral to a transplant unit is a serious illness with a high chance of either transplantation or death. Modifications in assist devices will be required to improve safety, especially for children < 5 years old where the donor wait may be prolonged. The identification of children who may recover function requires further study.
The objective of this study was to assess differences in myocardial systolic and diastolic function and vascular function in children 2−5 years of age born to diabetic as compared to non-diabetic mothers.
This study was a retrospective cohort conducted in 2016 at The Aga Khan University Hospital, Karachi, Pakistan. It included children between 2 and 5 years of age born to mothers with and without exposure to diabetes in utero (n = 68 in each group) and who were appropriate for gestational age. Myocardial morphology and function using echocardiogram and carotid intima media thickness (cIMT) and pulse wave velocity was performed to evaluate cardiac function as well as macrovascular remodelling in these children. Multiple linear regression was used to compare the groups.
There was no significant difference in cardiac morphology, myocardial systolic and diastolic function, and macrovascular assessment between the exposed and unexposed groups of AGA children. Subgroup analysis demonstrated a significantly decreased mitral E/A ratio in children whose mothers were on medications as compared to those on dietary control (median [IQR] = 1.7 [1.6–1.9] and 1.56 [1.4–1.7], respectively, p = 0.02), and a higher cIMT in children whose mothers were on medication as compared to controls (0.48 [0.44–0.52] and 0.46 [0.44–0.50], respectively, p = 0.03).
In utero exposure to uncontrolled maternal diabetes has an effect on the cardiovascular structure and function in children aged 2−5 years. However, future work requires long-term follow-up from fetal to adult life to assess these changes over the life course.
Resin acid-enriched composition (RAC) mainly containing tall oil fatty acid with an active component of resin acid (RA) can improve the microbial population in the digestive system, change the microbial fermentation, and improve the feed conversion ratio. We investigated the effects of dietary supplementation of RAC on sow colostrum yield (CY), colostrum composition and gut microbiota. Tall oil fatty acid and RA are commonly termed RAC and CLA, pinolenic, abietic, dehydrobiotic acids are characteristic components of RAC. The experiment was conducted in three trials in three respective herds. Sows were fed with a control diet and the same diet supplemented with 5 g RAC/day per sow during the last week of gestation. The 16S ribosomal RNA gene sequencing technique was used to assess sows’ faecal microbiota populations at farrowing. Colostrum nutritional composition, acute phase proteins (APPs) and immunoglobulin (Ig) content were also assessed. Individual piglets were weighed at birth and 24 h after the birth of first piglets in order to calculate CY and later at 3 to 4 weeks to calculate average daily gain. The RAC-fed sows had significantly higher IgG levels (P<0.05) in all three herds but treatment did not influence colostrum IgA and IgM concentration. There were no significant differences in colostrum protein, lactose and fat content in sows of the two diet groups (P>0.05), but those fed RAC had higher levels of colostrum serum amyloid A. Colostrum yield was significantly higher in RAC-fed sows in herds 2 and 3 with heavier piglets between 3 and 4 weeks of age (P<0.05), but not in herd 1 (P>0.05). Resin acid-enriched composition supplementation significantly increased some beneficial and fermentative bacteria (Romboutsia and Clostridium sensu stricto) than the control diet (P<0.01) while some opportunistic pathogens (Barnesiella, Sporobacter, Intestinimonas and Campylobacter), including Proteobacteria, were suppressed. Therefore, RAC added to the sow diet at late pregnancy increases colostrum IgG, colostrum availability for neonate piglets, and seems to promote better maternal intestinal microbial sources.
The present study aimed to identify the factors that affect immediate (within 24 h after farrowing onset) postnatal piglet mortality in litters with hyperprolific sows, and investigate their associations with behaviour of postpartum sows in two different farrowing housing systems. A total of 30 sows were housed in: (1) CRATE (n=15): the farrowing crate closed (0.80×2.20 m) within a pen (2.50×1.70 m), and (2) OPEN (n=15): the farrowing crate open (0.80×2.20×1.80 m) within a pen (2.50×2.40 m) with a provision of 20 ls of hay in a rack. A total of 518 live born piglets, produced from the 30 sows, were used for data analyses during the first 24 h after the onset of parturition (T24). Behavioural observations of the sows were assessed via video analyses during T24. Total and crushed piglet mortality rates were higher in OPEN compared with CRATE (P<0.01, for both). During T24, the OPEN sows tended to show higher frequency of postural changes (P=0.07) and duration of standing (P=0.10), and showed higher frequencies of bar-biting (P<0.05) and piglet trapping (P<0.01), when compared with the CRATE sows. During T24, the mortality rates caused by crushing were correlated with the piglet trapping event (r=0.93, P<0.0001), postural changes (r=0.37, P<0.01), duration of standing (r=0.32, P<0.01) and frequency of bar-biting behaviour (r=0.51, P<0.01) of the sows (n=30). In conclusion, immediate postnatal piglet mortality, mainly due to crushing, may be associated with potential increases in frequency of postural changes, duration of standing and incidence of piglet trapping in postpartum sows in the open crate system with large litters.
Dwarf galaxies constitute 18% of the galaxies in the core of the Coma Cluster. We present the correlation between structural properties and morphology of galaxies in the central region of Coma Cluster for 221 objects within the apparent magnitude range m < 19.5. The data is taken from the HST/ACS Coma Cluster Treasury Survey. For cluster membership we have used photometric redshifts and spectroscopic redshifts from literature. From the investigation of correlations of effective radius, Sersic index, absolute magnitude and bulge to total light ratio, we find the galaxies are distributed as follows: dwarfs 18%, E/SO 33%, SO 22%, Sb & Sb0 17% and 10% are Spirals+Irregulars+Ring. We found that multiple component fits are best for giants and the single Sersic fit is best for dwarfs & spiral galaxies. We shall try to explain why the single Sersic fit is best for dwarfs and what kind of stellar orbits do they correspond to using the bulge Sersic index of dwarfs.
Compensatory gain describes an accelerated growth seen in animals following a period of nutrient restriction. Methionine (Met) is the second limiting amino acid in typical swine diets and is essential for muscle growth. This study was conducted to determine (1) if a Met-deficient diet can cause growth retardation in growing pigs, (2) if returning to a normal feeding can yield compensatory gain in the pigs previously fed the Met-deficient diet, and (3) if this Met-deficiency followed by the normal feeding program affects carcass characteristics. Twenty individually-penned crossbred young barrows were randomly allotted to two dietary treatments (n = 10). One Met-deficient (D1) and one Met-adequate (D2) diets were formulated based on corn and soybean meal and fed to respective pigs for 31 days. After that, all pigs were fed the same commercial grower-finisher diet until market weight (around 125 kg), then slaughtered, and carcass characteristics measured. The D1 and D2 pigs began with similar body weights (23.5 vs. 23.6 kg; P = 0.935), but after 31-days on the dietary treatments, D1 pigs were lighter than D2 pigs (51.6 vs. 55.0 kg; P = 0.102). After feeding the normal diet for 55 days, D1 and D2 pigs had similar body weights (122.7 vs. 122.6 kg; P = 0.989). In terms of carcass characteristics, however, D1 pigs had thicker back-fat (at 10th rib; 2.95 vs. 2.51 cm; P = 0.015), heavier belly weight (11.0 vs. 9.6 kg; P = 0.005), lighter ham weights (untrimmed: 20.8 vs. 21.6 kg; P = 0.043; trimmed: 19.6 vs. 20.6 kg; P = 0.016), lighter picnic shoulder weight (8.72 vs. 9.80 kg; P = 0.041), lighter total lean cut weight (51.8 vs. 53.8 kg; P = 0.055), and lower lean cut percentage (56.4 vs. 59.0%; P = 0.012). These results indicate that the Met-deficient diet produced growth-retarded pigs, which showed compensatory gain after the normal feeding. At slaughter, the pigs previously fed the Met-deficient diet had more fat and less lean tissue than their non-deficient counterparts.
Antibody-mediated encephalitis has been discussed as one possible cause for isolated psychotic syndromes. Mostly based on serum samples, findings have been controversial. We present the results of a retrospective study of 124 clinically diagnosed psychotic patients without documented relevant neurological symptoms. All were tested for different antineuronal antibodies in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) while 81 received serum testing. Antineuronal antibodies in CSF were negative across the sample. 3.7% showed low positive serum antibodies. Our findings highlight the importance of a deeper discussion about the relevance of low positive serum antibodies without concurrent findings in CSF or clinical signs for autoimmune encephalitis.
Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB) are persistent environmental contaminants that have been reported to adversely affect reproduction in mammals. The exact mechanism of action of these chemicals on oocyte and embryo development are not known. Previous studies in our laboratory demonstrated that PCB adversely affect in vitro oocyte maturation and embryo development in two different in vitro systems (cattle, rabbit). The objective of present study was to investigate the possible role of the arylhydrocarbon receptor (AhR) in PCB toxicity. The AhR is a transcription factor activated by ligands such as dioxins or PCB. Its transcriptional activity depends on dimerisation with its nuclear partner ARNT. The presence of AhR and ARNT was investigated in bovine and rabbit genital tract (uterus, ovary) and embryonic tissues, employing RT-PCR and immunohistochemistry.
Dendritic cells (DC) are central regulators of immune responses and professional antigen-presenting cells (APCs) with the unique ability to induce both innate immune responses and a highly specific acquired immunity. DC communicates through chemical and mechanical signals in the initiation and maintenance of immune responses. DC forms immunological synapses with T-cells thus pulling T-cells strings and leading to activation of T-cells. Owing to their properties, DC are often called ‘nature's adjuvants’ and thus have become an important component of any vaccination strategy. Coccidiosis is a major intestinal disease caused by Eimeria spp., affecting economically valuable livestock animals such as chickens and turkeys. Economic losses are associated with decreased productivity in afflicted poultry. Vaccination strategies involving DC have been developed owing to the special properties of these cells in coordinating innate and adaptive immune responses. Vaccination of chickens with exosomes isolated from DC containing parasite antigens (Ags) represents a promising alternative strategy to control avian coccidiosis. In recent years, emergence of new chicken DC has opened a new horizon for the development of new vaccines and DC derived vaccine could be a possible strategy to control coccidiosis in field. This review summarises the current state of knowledge of DC and their specific functions in immunity against avian coccidiosis.
The time-dependent collapse of a slender flux tube extending vertically in the convection zone of the Sun is modelled. Starting from an initial state in which the flux tube is in hydrostatic equilibrium, the non-linear MHD equations are used to examine its temporal evolution. A detailed study of the flow variables and magnetic field within the tube is presented. It is seen that asymptotically in time a unique state of dynamic equilibrium is established, irrespective of the value of βo (the ratio of the thermal to magnetic pressure at the initial epoch).
Determination of critical threshold for induction and termination of diapause (hibernation) are important for better understanding the bio-ecology and population dynamics of Chilo partellus (Swinhoe) under varying climatic conditions. We studied initiation and termination of hibernation under five temperature and photoperiod regimes viz., 27°C + 12L:12D, 22°C + 11.5L:12.5D, 18°C + 11L:13D, 14°C + 10.5L:13.5D and 10°C + 10L:14D under fixed and ramping treatments, and the observations were recorded on various phenological and developmental characteristics at weekly intervals. Present studies revealed that the induction of hibernation in C. partellus larvae takes from 46 to 56 days depending upon temperature and photoperiod conditions. Induction of hibernation varied from 7.9 to 18.3% across treatment conditions, indicating that not all C. partellus larvae undergo diapause under prevailing environmental conditions. Weight, length and head capsule width of diapausing larvae were found significantly lower than the non-diapausing larvae. The non-diapausing C. partellus larvae required a thermal threshold of 1068 degree-days under ambient conditions, while in case of hibernating larvae it varied significantly across treatment conditions. Diapausing larvae underwent up to five supernumerary moults, wherein highest percentage of diapausing larvae (35.7%) exhibited two supernumerary moults. The developmental time of diapausing larvae varied from 94.9 to 160.4 days across treatments. A population loss of 17.2–28.3% was recorded in C. partellus due to hibernation, which has implications for population buildup of post-hibernation first brood and management strategies.
The association between the different scales of convection on the solar photosphere and the field strengths/flux content of discrete magnetic flux concentrations is analyzed using simultaneously recorded SOHO/MDI high resolution filtergrams and magnetograms. The convective flow field is derived using the Local Correlation Tracking (LCT) technique. The locations and strengths of the flux elements with respect to the flow cells are analyzed to obtain information about different scales of convection.
Colostrum is an essential source of immunoglobulin G (IgG) for neonate piglets. However, colostrum IgG content and nutritional composition can vary considerably among sows due to age, parity, feeding regime and immunological background. Currently, there is no practical way to obtain information about colostrum IgG concentration at herd level. We evaluated sows’ colostrum IgG content on-farm using a Brix refractometer and its performance was compared with that of an IgG ELISA. In addition, nutritional compositions of the colostrum samples were analyzed using Fourier transform IR spectroscopy. Colostrum samples (5 to 6 ml) (n=153) were obtained within 0 to 3 h of farrowing. However, to obtain a 24 h IgG profile for 11 sows, colostrum samples were collected at 0, 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 16 and 24 h after farrowing. A 0.3 ml of freshly drawn colostrum sample was used for the on-farm measurement of Brix percentages using a digital refractometer shortly after collection. The remaining fractions of the samples were frozen and submitted to laboratory analysis for total IgG, using a commercially available pig IgG ELISA kit. For nutritional composition analysis, a 35 ml colostrum sample (n=34) was obtained immediately after birth of first piglet from the first three pairs of frontal teats. Colostrum concentrations of IgG averaged 52.03±30.70 mg/ml (mean±SEM) at 0 to 3 h after farrowing. Concentration of IgG decreased on average by 50% during the 1st day of lactation (P<0.01). Sow parity did not influence colostrum concentrations of IgG. Differences in colostrum composition were recorded between two herds and among the parity groups (P<0.05). The Brix refractometer measurement of colostrum and the corresponding log transformed IgG measurements from the ELISA were moderately correlated (r=0.63, P<0.001, n=153). Based on the classification we suggest here, low levels of IgG (14.5±1.8 mg/ml) were recorded for colostrum samples with Brix readings below 20%. Borderline colostrum IgG content (43.8±2.3 mg/ml) had Brix readings of 20% to 24%, adequate colostrum IgG content (50.7±2.1 mg/ml) had Brix % readings of 25% to 29% and very good IgG colostrum content (78.6±8.4 mg/ml) had Brix readings >30%. Colostrum IgG concentration is highly variable among sows, Brix measurement of a sows’ fresh colostrum is an inexpensive, rapid and satisfactorily accurate method of estimating IgG concentration, providing indication of differentiation between good and poor IgG content of colostrum.
Patients with psychosis display the so-called ‘Jumping to Conclusions’ bias (JTC) – a tendency for hasty decision-making in probabilistic reasoning tasks. So far, only a few studies have evaluated the JTC bias in ‘at-risk mental state’ (ARMS) patients, specifically in ARMS samples fulfilling ‘ultra-high risk’ (UHR) criteria, thus not allowing for comparisons between different ARMS subgroups.
In the framework of the PREVENT (secondary prevention of schizophrenia) study, a JTC task was applied to 188 patients either fulfilling UHR criteria or presenting with cognitive basic symptoms (BS). Similar data were available for 30 healthy control participants matched for age, gender, education and premorbid verbal intelligence. ARMS patients were identified by the Structured Interview for Prodromal Symptoms (SIPS) and the Schizophrenia Proneness Instrument – Adult Version (SPI-A).
The mean number of draws to decision (DTD) significantly differed between ARM -subgroups: UHR patients made significantly less draws to make a decision than ARMS patients with only cognitive BS. Furthermore, UHR patients tended to fulfil behavioural criteria for JTC more often than BS patients. In a secondary analysis, ARMS patients were much hastier in their decision-making than controls. In patients, DTD was moderately associated with positive and negative symptoms as well as disorganization and excitement.
Our data indicate an enhanced JTC bias in the UHR group compared to ARMS patients with only cognitive BS. This underscores the importance of reasoning deficits within cognitive theories of the developing psychosis. Interactions with the liability to psychotic transitions and therapeutic interventions should be unravelled in longitudinal studies.
A highly accurate multi-point pressure measurement system based on MEMS pressure sensors spliced into a fiber optic cable and suitable for downhole deployment in a CO2 sequestration well was designed, developed and tested in the laboratory. An interrogator system based on a pulsed laser excitation was shown to be capable of multiple (potentially 60+) point sensor measurements on a single fiber. The interrogator was interfaced with the GE PredixTM industrial internet to demonstrate a remote monitoring system. Sensor packages were fabricated and tested at high temperatures and pressures in supercritical CO2. Environmental and stress testing of the sensor components and package indicated areas in which the design of the package should be further improved.
Religious laws do not usually forbid the use of psychotropic medication, but many do forbid the consumption of animal-based derivatives of bovine and/or porcine origin (e.g. gelatin and stearic acid) such as are found in many medications. Demonstrating awareness of this, combined with a genuine concern about how it affects the patient, may strengthen the doctor—patient relationship and avoid non-adherence. In this article, we outline dietary requirements of key religions and belief systems that may have a bearing when prescribing medication containing animal-based ingredients. We identify common psychotropics that contain animal-based derivatives and suggest alternative prescribing options and approaches to dealing with sensitive ethical issues.
After more than half a century of community support related to the science of “solar activity”, IAU's Commission 10 was formally discontinued in 2015, to be succeeded by C.E2 with the same area of responsibility. On this occasion, we look back at the growth of the scientific disciplines involved around the world over almost a full century. Solar activity and fields of research looking into the related physics of the heliosphere continue to be vibrant and growing, with currently over 2,000 refereed publications appearing per year from over 4,000 unique authors, publishing in dozens of distinct journals and meeting in dozens of workshops and conferences each year. The size of the rapidly growing community and of the observational and computational data volumes, along with the multitude of connections into other branches of astrophysics, pose significant challenges; aspects of these challenges are beginning to be addressed through, among others, the development of new systems of literature reviews, machine-searchable archives for data and publications, and virtual observatories. As customary in these reports, we highlight some of the research topics that have seen particular interest over the most recent triennium, specifically active-region magnetic fields, coronal thermal structure, coronal seismology, flares and eruptions, and the variability of solar activity on long time scales. We close with a collection of developments, discoveries, and surprises that illustrate the range and dynamics of the discipline.