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This work summarizes the methodical capabilities, improvements, and new developments in the radiocarbon laboratory of the accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) facility at the University of Cologne, Germany, which was established in 2010. During the past years, the laboratory has specialized in the analysis of small and gaseous samples. We thus, recently installed a second ion source dedicated for radiocarbon (14C) analysis of CO2 samples at our 6 MV Tandetron AMS from High Voltage Engineering Europe B.V. that is coupled with the gas injection system from Ionplus and an EuroVector EA 3000 elemental analyzer. This work summarizes all pretreatment methods and analytical facilities established in our laboratory during the last years including 14C analysis of individual organic compounds and of CO2 trapped on molecular sieves. We also report different blank values including our long-term blank since 2011, which is for normal-sized, solid samples (650–1000 µg C) 0.0012 ± 0.0004 F14C (54,305 ± 2581 yr BP, n = 484). The precision obtained for modern samples measured as graphite is 0.5% and for gaseous samples injected with the GIS ≤2%.
UK Biobank is a well-characterised cohort of over 500 000 participants that offers unique opportunities to investigate multiple diseases and risk factors.
An online mental health questionnaire completed by UK Biobank participants was expected to expand the potential for research into mental disorders.
An expert working group designed the questionnaire, using established measures where possible, and consulting with a patient group regarding acceptability. Case definitions were defined using operational criteria for lifetime depression, mania, anxiety disorder, psychotic-like experiences and self-harm, as well as current post-traumatic stress and alcohol use disorders.
157 366 completed online questionnaires were available by August 2017. Comparison of self-reported diagnosed mental disorder with a contemporary study shows a similar prevalence, despite respondents being of higher average socioeconomic status than the general population across a range of indicators. Thirty-five per cent (55 750) of participants had at least one defined syndrome, of which lifetime depression was the most common at 24% (37 434). There was extensive comorbidity among the syndromes. Mental disorders were associated with high neuroticism score, adverse life events and long-term illness; addiction and bipolar affective disorder in particular were associated with measures of deprivation.
The questionnaire represents a very large mental health survey in itself, and the results presented here show high face validity, although caution is needed owing to selection bias. Built into UK Biobank, these data intersect with other health data to offer unparalleled potential for crosscutting biomedical research involving mental health.
Declaration of interest
G.B. received grants from the National Institute for Health Research during the study; and support from Illumina Ltd. and the European Commission outside the submitted work. B.C. received grants from the Scottish Executive Chief Scientist Office and from The Dr Mortimer and Theresa Sackler Foundation during the study. C.S. received grants from the Medical Research Council and Wellcome Trust during the study, and is the Chief Scientist for UK Biobank. M.H. received grants from the Innovative Medicines Initiative via the RADAR-CNS programme and personal fees as an expert witness outside the submitted work.
To determine the clinical diagnoses associated with the National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN) pneumonia (PNEU) or lower respiratory infection (LRI) surveillance events
Retrospective chart review
A convenience sample of 8 acute-care hospitals in Pennsylvania
All patients hospitalized during 2011–2012
Medical records were reviewed from a random sample of patients reported to the NHSN to have PNEU or LRI, excluding adults with ventilator-associated PNEU. Documented clinical diagnoses corresponding temporally to the PNEU and LRI events were recorded.
We reviewed 250 (30%) of 838 eligible PNEU and LRI events reported to the NHSN; 29 reported events (12%) fulfilled neither PNEU nor LRI case criteria. Differences interpreting radiology reports accounted for most misclassifications. Of 81 PNEU events in adults not on mechanical ventilation, 84% had clinician-diagnosed pneumonia; of these, 25% were attributed to aspiration. Of 43 adult LRI, 88% were in mechanically ventilated patients and 35% had no corresponding clinical diagnosis (infectious or noninfectious) documented at the time of LRI. Of 36 pediatric PNEU events, 72% were ventilator associated, and 70% corresponded to a clinical pneumonia diagnosis. Of 61 pediatric LRI patients, 84% were mechanically ventilated and 21% had no corresponding clinical diagnosis documented.
In adults not on mechanical ventilation and in children, most NHSN-defined PNEU events corresponded with compatible clinical conditions documented in the medical record. In contrast, NHSN LRI events often did not. As a result, substantial modifications to the LRI definitions were implemented in 2015.
Epidemiological data are often fragmented, partial, and/or ambiguous and unable to yield the desired level of understanding of infectious disease dynamics to adequately inform control measures. Here, we show how the information contained in widely available serology data can be enhanced by integration with less common type-specific data, to improve the understanding of the transmission dynamics of complex multi-species pathogens and host communities. Using brucellosis in northern Tanzania as a case study, we developed a latent process model based on serology data obtained from the field, to reconstruct Brucella transmission dynamics. We were able to identify sheep and goats as a more likely source of human and animal infection than cattle; however, the highly cross-reactive nature of Brucella spp. meant that it was not possible to determine which Brucella species (B. abortus or B. melitensis) is responsible for human infection. We extended our model to integrate simulated serology and typing data, and show that although serology alone can identify the host source of human infection under certain restrictive conditions, the integration of even small amounts (5%) of typing data can improve understanding of complex epidemiological dynamics. We show that data integration will often be essential when more than one pathogen is present and when the distinction between exposed and infectious individuals is not clear from serology data. With increasing epidemiological complexity, serology data become less informative. However, we show how this weakness can be mitigated by integrating such data with typing data, thereby enhancing the inference from these data and improving understanding of the underlying dynamics.
Few studies have investigated developmental strengths and weaknesses within the cognitive profile of children and adolescents with fragile X syndrome (FXS), a single-gene cause of inherited intellectual impairment. With a prospective longitudinal design and using normalized raw scores (Z scores) to circumvent floor effects, we measured cognitive functioning of 184 children and adolescents with FXS (ages 6 to 16) using the Wechsler Scale of Intelligence for Children on one to three occasions for each participant. Participants with FXS received lower raw scores relative to the Wechsler Scale of Intelligence for Children normative sample across the developmental period. Verbal comprehension, perceptual organization, and processing speed Z scores were marked by a widening gap from the normative sample, while freedom from distractibility Z scores showed a narrowing gap. Key findings include a relative strength for verbal skills in comparison with visuospatial–constructive skills arising in adolescence and a discrepancy between working memory (weakness) and processing speed (strength) in childhood that diminishes in adolescence. Results suggest that the cognitive profile associated with FXS develops dynamically from childhood to adolescence. Findings are discussed within the context of aberrant brain morphology in childhood and maturation in adolescence. We argue that assessing disorder-specific cognitive developmental profiles will benefit future disorder-specific treatment research.
Brazilian environmental law imposes more restrictions on land-use change by private landowners in riparian forests than in non-riparian forest areas, reflecting recognition of their importance for the conservation of biodiversity and key ecosystem services. A 22-year time series of classified Landsat images was used to evaluate deforestation and forest regeneration in riparian permanent preservation areas over the past two decades, focusing on the municipality of Paragominas in the state of Pará in eastern Amazonia. There was no evidence that riparian forests had been more effectively protected than non-riparian forests. Instead, deforestation was found to be comparatively higher inside riparian permanent preservation areas as recently as 2010, indicating a widespread failure of private property owners to comply with environmental legislation. There was no evidence for higher levels of regeneration in riparian zones, although property owners are obliged by law to restore such areas. A number of factors limit improvements in the protection and restoration of riparian forests. These include limited awareness of environmental compliance requirements, the need for improved technical capacity in mapping the distribution and extent of riparian forests and the boundaries of private properties, and improved access to the financial resources and technical capacity needed to support restoration projects.
Anorexia nervosa (AN) is a serious disorder incurring high costs due to hospitalization. International treatments vary, with prolonged hospitalizations in Europe and shorter hospitalizations in the USA. Uncontrolled studies suggest that longer initial hospitalizations that normalize weight produce better outcomes and fewer admissions than shorter hospitalizations with lower discharge weights. This study aimed to compare the effectiveness of hospitalization for weight restoration (WR) to medical stabilization (MS) in adolescent AN.
We performed a randomized controlled trial (RCT) with 82 adolescents, aged 12–18 years, with a DSM-IV diagnosis of AN and medical instability, admitted to two pediatric units in Australia. Participants were randomized to shorter hospitalization for MS or longer hospitalization for WR to 90% expected body weight (EBW) for gender, age and height, both followed by 20 sessions of out-patient, manualized family-based treatment (FBT).
The primary outcome was the number of hospital days, following initial admission, at the 12-month follow-up. Secondary outcomes were the total number of hospital days used up to 12 months and full remission, defined as healthy weight (>95% EBW) and a global Eating Disorder Examination (EDE) score within 1 standard deviation (s.d.) of published means. There was no significant difference between groups in hospital days following initial admission. There were significantly more total hospital days used and post-protocol FBT sessions in the WR group. There were no moderators of primary outcome but participants with higher eating psychopathology and compulsive features reported better clinical outcomes in the MS group.
Outcomes are similar with hospitalizations for MS or WR when combined with FBT. Cost savings would result from combining shorter hospitalization with FBT.
The Relative Consequence Model proposes multiple sclerosis (MS) patients have a fundamental deficit in processing speed that compromises other cognitive functions. The present study examined the mediating role of processing speed, as well as working memory, in the MS-related effects on other cognitive functions for early relapsing-remitting patients. Seventy relapsing-remitting MS patients with disease duration not greater than 10 years and 72 controls completed tasks assessing processing speed, working memory, learning, and executive functioning. The possible mediating roles of speed and working memory in the MS-related effects on other cognitive functions were evaluated using structural equation modeling. Processing speed was not significantly related to group membership and could not have a mediating role. Working memory was related to group membership and functioned as a mediating/intervening factor. The results do not support the Relative Consequence Model in this sample and they challenge the notion that working memory impairment only emerges at later disease stages. The results do support a mediating/intervening role of working memory. These results were obtained for early relapsing-remitting MS patients and should not be generalized to the broader MS population. Instead, future research should examine the relations that exist at other disease stages. (JINS, 2013, 19, 1–12)
A new structure of triode type field emission displays based on single-walled carbon nanotube emitters is demonstrated. In this structure, gate electrodes are situated under cathode electrodes with an in-between insulating layer, so called under-gate type triode. Electron emission from the carbon nanotube emitters is modulated by changing gate voltages. A threshold voltage is approximately 70 V at the anode bias of 275 V.
High-Resolution X-Ray Diffraction is investigated as a technique for analysis of low-dose, high-energy implanted (001) silicon. The choice of the proper Bragg reflection for the rocking curve measurements is showed to be of crucial importance. The (026)1 reflection appears to be the most suitable for strain caused by implantation damage. By a qualitative analysis of rocking curves taken on B and P implanted Si samples, it could be established that the minimum dose, for which HR-XRD is sensitive enough, is about 1.5.1014cm−2 and 5.1013cm−2 for P and B, respectively. The necessary minimum peak temperature that was determined for a complete damage anneal with the T-RTA of P implanted Si with energies ranging from 0.5 to 1.5 MeV, was 1400 K for all doses of P considered. For B the required optimum peak temperature is about 1375 K.
The purpose of this talk is to discuss the physical properties of the (TMTSF)2X charge transfer salts in high magnetic fields. This class of materials is of great interest since the effective lower dimensionality and the various ground states are magnetic field dependent at low temperatures. At present, the so-called “standard model” provides a good theoretical description of the low field field induced spin density wave transitions (FISDW). However the reentrance from the last FISDW back to a high field metallic state, and the coexistence of “fast oscillations” in all measured properties, is yet to be accurately described theoretically. The emphasis of this paper is on recent specific heat results which have been obtained on (TMTSF)2ClO4 in magnetic fields as high as 30 T. Here we observe both the reentrant phase transition and the fast oscillations in the specific heat. A main conclusion we draw from our measurements is that the density of states in the reentrant phase is less than it is in the low field metallic state at low temperatures.
We present a novel technique to metallize high-aspect-ratio, small-dimension contact holes and via plugs for application to integrated circuits and packaging. The technique uses a laser-assisted process to deposit a thin film of aluminum from DMA1H, which forms a seed layer for subsequent selective CVD. The resistivity of the deposited aluminum is nearly that of the bulk metal, the contact resistivity is good (∼0.03 μΩ-cm2), and the morphology of the deposited film is comparable to that obtained with physical vapor deposition. This process has been used to fill via holes in a SiO2 substrate, and small-diameter (0.7 μm), high-aspect-ratio (3:1), aluminum plugs have been repeatedly formed without the incorporation of voids. A custom-made via chain structure was used to determine the via resistance (plug and contact), which was found to be 0.1 -0.3 Ω. Our technique opens a new process window for void-free high-aspect-ratio via and contact hole filling, and is particularly interesting in that it offers the potential to use aluminum or aluminum-copper in plug metallization.
Epitaxial magnetite (Fe3O4) thin films have been grown on MgO(001) substrates by pulsed laser deposition. The films have characteristics of the “Verwey transition”: the electric conductivity decreases by about one order of magnitude and the magnetization curve shows anomaly at the transition temperature, i.e. about 125 K. Effects of annealing the Fe3O4 thin films at various oxygen partial pressures have also been investigated. Phase identification was made using XRD techniques and infrared reflectivity measurements. The surface morphologies were studied by SEM and AFM. Under an oxidizing atmosphere, the Fe3O4 phase is transformed mainly into α-Fe2O3, and this transformation is accompanied by development of needle-like structures along <110> directions of MgO substrate. It is also found that electrical and magnetic properties of the iron oxide films are changed significantly by the annealing process.