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Background: For robot-assisted telesurgery, the workstation, in particular the haptic handcontroller itself a robot, is paramount to the performance of surgery. Based on the requirements for microsurgery, a novel haptic handcontroller Excalibur has been developed. Methods: Thirty-two surgeons performed a peg-in-hole task (simulating micromanipulation) with Excalibur and two commercially available handcontrollers (Sigma 7 and PHANToM Premium 3.0). A modified Kuka endeffector with bipolar forceps, and Leica microscope completed the remote robotic site. Comparisons were made based on training time, task completion time and number of errors. All participants completed a questionnaire. Results: Repeated measures ANOVA demonstrated significance for task completion time (p=0.004), training time (p=0.021) and number of errors (p=0.004). Surgeons were faster with Excalibur (72s) than with Sigma (96s,p=0.005) and PHANToM (96s,p=0.036). Training time was shorter with Excalibur than with PHANToM (210s vs 310s,p=0.013), and users made fewer errors (0.7 vs 2.1,p=0.008). Training time required for Sigma (285s) and the number of errors (1.3) were not significant. The surgeons found Excalibur smoother, more comfortable, less tiring and easier to maneuver, with more realistic force feedback and superior movement fidelity. Conclusions: Surgical performance was superior with Excalibur compared to the other handcontrollers. This may reflect the microsurgical requirements and unique design architecture of Excalibur.
Infrared signal measurements from a micro-turbojet engine are conducted to understand the characteristics of the engine performance and the infrared signal by varying the exhaust nozzle configuration. A cone type nozzle and five rectangle type nozzles whose aspect ratios vary from one to five are used for this experimental work. As a result, it is confirmed that the thrust and the fuel consumption rate of the engine do not change greatly by varying the exhaust nozzle shape. In the case of the aspect ratio of 5, the specific fuel consumption of the engine is increased by about 3% compared to the reference cone nozzle, but the infrared signal can be reduced by up to 14%. As a result of measuring the temperature distribution of the plume gas, the correlation of infrared signal with plume gas temperature distribution can be understood. In the case of a cone shape, the distribution of plume gas formed to circular shape, and the high-temperature core region of plume gas continued to develop farther to the downstream. However, the temperature distribution was maintained in the rectangular shape as the aspect ratio increased, and the average temperature decreased sharply. As the aspect ratio increases, the plume spreads more widely.
While studies suggest that nutritional supplementation may reduce aggressive behavior in children, few have examined their effects on specific forms of aggression. This study tests the primary hypothesis that omega-3 (ω-3), both alone and in conjunction with social skills training, will have particular post-treatment efficacy for reducing childhood reactive aggression relative to baseline.
In this randomized, double-blind, stratified, placebo-controlled, factorial trial, a clinical sample of 282 children with externalizing behavior aged 7–16 years was randomized into ω-3 only, social skills only, ω-3 + social skills, and placebo control groups. Treatment duration was 6 months. The primary outcome measure was reactive aggression collected at 0, 3, 6, 9, and 12 months, with antisocial behavior as a secondary outcome.
Children in the ω-3-only group showed a short-term reduction (at 3 and 6 months) in self-report reactive aggression, and also a short-term reduction in overall antisocial behavior. Sensitivity analyses and a robustness check replicated significant interaction effects. Effect sizes (d) were small, ranging from 0.17 to 0.31.
Findings provide some initial support for the efficacy of ω-3 in reducing reactive aggression over and above standard care (medication and parent training), but yield only preliminary and limited support for the efficacy of ω-3 in reducing overall externalizing behavior in children. Future studies could test further whether ω-3 shows promise in reducing more reactive, impulsive forms of aggression.
We report on the astrometric registration of VLBI images of the SiO and H2O masers in OH 231.8+4.2, the iconic Proto-Planetary Nebula also known as the Calabash nebula, using the KVN and Source/Frequency Phase Referencing. This, for the first time, robustly confirms the alignment of the SiO masers, close to the AGB star, which drives the bi-lobe structure with the water masers in the out-flow.
Young children are particularly vulnerable to malnutrition as nutrition transition progresses. The present study aimed to document the prevalence, coexistence and correlates of nutritional status (stunting, overweight/obesity and anaemia) in Samoan children aged 24–59 months.
A cross-sectional community-based survey. Height and weight were used to determine prevalence of stunting (height-for-age Z-score <−2) and overweight/obesity (BMI-for-age Z-score >+2) based on WHO growth standards. Anaemia was determined using an AimStrip Hemoglobin test system (Hb <110 g/l).
Ten villages on the Samoan island of Upolu.
Mother–child pairs (n 305) recruited using convenience sampling.
Moderate or severe stunting was apparent in 20·3 % of children, 16·1 % were overweight/obese and 34·1 % were anaemic. Among the overweight/obese children, 28·6 % were also stunted and 42·9 % anaemic, indicating dual burden of malnutrition. Stunting was significantly less likely among girls (OR=0·41; 95 % CI 0·21, 0·79, P<0·01) than boys. Overweight/obesity was associated with higher family socio-economic status and decreased sugar intake (OR per 10 g/d=0·89, 95 % CI 0·80, 0·99, P=0·032). The odds of anaemia decreased with age and anaemia was more likely in children with an anaemic mother (OR=2·20; 95 % CI 1·22, 3·98, P=0·007). No child, maternal or household characteristic was associated with more than one of the nutritional status outcomes, highlighting the need for condition-specific interventions in this age group.
The observed prevalences of stunting, overweight/obesity and anaemia suggest that it is critical to invest in nutrition and develop health programmes targeting early childhood growth and development in Samoa.
A new approach is proposed to analyze Bremsstrahlung X-rays that are emitted from laser-produced plasmas (LPP) and are measured by a stack type spectrometer. This new method is based on a spectral tomographic reconstruction concept with the variational principle for optimization, without referring to the electron energy distribution of a plasma. This approach is applied to the analysis of some experimental data obtained at a few major laser facilities to demonstrate the applicability of the method. Slope temperatures of X-rays from LPP are determined with a two-temperature model, showing different spectral characteristics of X-rays depending on laser properties used in the experiments.
The popularity of cognitive remediation (CR) interventions for individuals with psychosis is in part based on the well-established link between cognition and functioning and the assumption that by targeting cognition, function can improve. While numerous trials have reported CR's efficacy, it is still not considered an evidence-based treatment. Importantly, little is known about the mechanisms through which it may affect functioning.
In this study, we evaluated CR's proximal and distal effects, and examined potential mechanisms. A total of 75 individuals with psychotic disorders were randomized to a combination of strategy-based and drill-and-practice CR or wait-list control, with assessments of training task performance, neurocognition, functional capacity, symptoms and functioning conducted at baseline, end of the 2-month intervention, and 2-month follow-up.
Compared with treatment as usual, CR was associated with large post-training improvements on training tasks targeting attention, visuospatial memory, and verbal learning and memory, with persisting group differences at the 2-month follow-up. These generalized to mostly large improvements on neuropsychological measures targeting visuospatial memory, verbal learning and memory, delayed verbal memory and verbal working memory. While there were no CR-associated improvements on measures of functional capacity, symptoms, or a self-report measure of independent living skills, there was an effect on an interviewer-rated measure of functioning (Quality of Life Scale), which appeared primarily driven by the Intrapsychic Foundations subscale. Finally, for those randomized to CR, there were significant, medium-sized correlations between training task improvement, neuropsychological improvement and functioning measures.
This suggests a complex, multifactorial relationship between CR, and cognitive and functional change.
Two experiments were conducted to investigate the effects of dietary supplementation of bacteriophage cocktail, probiotics and a combination of these two supplements on performance and gut health of weanling pigs. In Experiment 1, 150 weaned piglets were randomly allotted to three treatments on the basis of BW. The dietary treatments included a basal diet supplemented with 0 (control), 1.0 and 1.5 g/kg bacteriophage cocktail. Pigs fed 1.0 and 1.5 g/kg bacteriophage product had greater (P<0.05) average daily gain (ADG), apparent total tract digestibility of dry matter from day 22 to 35, ileal Lactobacillus spp., villus height (duodenum and jejunum), and fewer coliforms (ileum) and Clostridium spp. (ileum). In Experiment 2, 200 weaned piglets were randomly allotted to four treatments. Dietary treatments included basal diet, basal diet supplemented with 3.0 g/kg fermented probiotic product (P), 1.0 g/kg bacteriophage cocktail (B) and combination of 1.0 g/kg bacteriophage cocktail and 3.0 g/kg fermented probiotic product. Pigs fed bacteriophage cocktail diets had greater (P<0.05) overall ADG, gain to feed ratio (G : F), fecal score from day 8 to day 21, and pigs fed bacteriophage cocktail diets had fewer coliforms (ileum) Clostridium spp. (ileum and cecum). Probiotics significantly increased G : F, colonization of Lactobacillus spp. in ileum. At day 35, bacteriophage treatment group showed greater (P<0.05) villus height of the duodenum, but a deeper crypt in duodenum. The present results indicate that the bacteriophage cocktail had a potential to enhance the performance and gut health of weanling pigs, however their combination with probiotics did not show an interaction.
Gilliland et al. (2000) have reported HST photometric observations of 34000 stars in the globular cluster 47 Tuc, showing an absence of close-in giant planets in that cluster relative to their frequency in the solar neighborhood. Here we describe the methods of time-series analysis that were used to search the 47 Tuc data for transits by giant extrasolar planets, and the means by which these methods were validated.
Background and aims: For patients with a severe brain injury there is no objective physiotherapy assessment tool that is responsive to the incremental changes in motor recovery in the acute stage. The aims of this study were to identify the items of neuro-motor recovery and scoring criteria for the Acute Brain Injury Physiotherapy Assessment (ABIPA) and determine responsiveness to change and concurrent validity against accepted standard measures of consciousness and physical function in the severe brain injury population.
Method: The literature was searched and an expert consensus panel of experienced clinical physiotherapists informed item selection and developed practical assessment guidelines. The ABIPA was investigated for responsiveness to change and concurrent validity against the Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS), Clinical Outcome Variable Scale (COVS) and Motor Assessment Scale (MAS). Eleven patients (9 males; cohort 41 ± 18 years) with moderate/severe brain injury were recruited, and assessed on days 1, 3, 7 and then weekly until discharge.
Results: The ABIPA demonstrated good to excellent correlations overall with the GCS (rho > .76, p ≤ .001), COVS (rho > .82, p ≤ .001) and MAS (rho > 0.66, p ≤ .001). On day 3, the ABIPA showed the greatest responsiveness to change (standardised response means (SRM) > .83) compared to other measures (SRMs < .77). At discharge all tools demonstrated change in neuro-motor recovery.
Conclusions: The ABIPA is a promising tool for detecting incremental changes in neuro-motor recovery early after severe brain injury.
Individuals with borderline personality disorder (BPD) frequently display co-morbid mental disorders. These disorders include ‘internalizing’ disorders (such as major depressive disorder and anxiety disorders) and ‘externalizing’ disorders (such as substance use disorders and antisocial personality disorder). It is hypothesized that these disorders may arise from latent ‘internalizing’ and ‘externalizing’ liability factors. Factor analytic studies suggest that internalizing and externalizing factors both contribute to BPD, but the extent to which such contributions are familial is unknown.
Participants were 368 probands (132 with BPD; 134 without BPD; and 102 with major depressive disorder) and 885 siblings and parents of probands. Participants were administered the Diagnostic Interview for DSM-IV Personality Disorders, the Revised Diagnostic Interview for Borderlines, and the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV.
On confirmatory factor analysis of within-person associations of disorders, BPD loaded moderately on internalizing (factor loading 0.53, s.e. = 0.10, p < 0.001) and externalizing latent variables (0.48, s.e. = 0.10, p < 0.001). Within-family associations were assessed using structural equation models of familial and non-familial factors for BPD, internalizing disorders, and externalizing disorders. In a Cholesky decomposition model, 84% (s.e. = 17%, p < 0.001) of the association of BPD with internalizing and externalizing factors was accounted for by familial contributions.
Familial internalizing and externalizing liability factors are both associated with, and therefore may mutually contribute to, BPD. These familial contributions account largely for the pattern of co-morbidity between BPD and internalizing and externalizing disorders.
Enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC) is now recognized as a common cause of foodborne outbreaks. This study aimed to describe the first ETEC O169 outbreak identified in Korea. In this outbreak, we identified 1642 cases from seven schools. Retrospective cohort studies were performed in two schools; and case-control studies were conducted in five schools. In two schools, radish kimchi was associated with illness; and in five other schools, radish or cabbage kimchi was found to have a higher risk among food items. Adjusted relative risk of kimchi was 5·87–7·21 in schools that underwent cohort studies; and adjusted odds ratio was 4·52–12·37 in schools that underwent case-control studies. ETEC O169 was isolated from 230 affected students, and was indistinguishable from the isolates detected from the kimchi product distributed by company X, a food company that produced and distributed kimchi to all seven schools. In this outbreak, we found that the risk of a kimchi-borne outbreak of ETEC O169 infection is present in Korea. We recommend continued monitoring regarding food safety in Korea, and strengthening surveillance regarding ETEC O169 infection through implementation of active laboratory surveillance to confirm its infection.