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Biochar has received attention due to its potential for mitigating climate change through carbon sequestration in soil and improving soil quality and crop productivity. This study evaluated the effects of rice straw biochar (RSB) and rice husk ash (RHA) each applied at 5 Mg ha−1 and four N levels (0, 40, 80, and 120 kg ha−1) on soil fertility, growth, and yield of rice and wheat for three consecutive rice–wheat rotations. RSB significantly increased electrical conductivity, dehydrogenase activity, and P and K contents when compared to control (no amendment) up to 7.5 cm soil depth. Both RSB and RHA did not influence shoot N concentration in wheat plant but significantly increased P and K concentrations at 60 days after sowing. Grain yields of both rice and wheat were significantly higher in RSB as compared to control (no amendment) and RHA treatments. While the highest grain yields of rice and wheat were observed at 120 kg N ha−1 in RHA and no biochar-treated plots, a significant increase in grain yields was observed at 80 kg N ha−1 in RSB treatment, thereby saving 40 kg N ha−1 in each crop. Both agronomic and recovery N efficiencies in rice and wheat were significantly higher in RSB-amended soil compared to control. Significant positive correlations were observed between soil N, P, and K concentrations and total N, P, and K concentrations in aboveground biomass of wheat at 60 days after sowing. This study showed the potential benefits of applying RSB for improving soil fertility and yields of rice and wheat in a rice–wheat system.
To describe the frequency of antibiotic prescriptions in patients with known viral respiratory infections (VRIs) diagnosed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) in 3 emergency departments (EDs) and to identify patient characteristics that influence the prescribing of antibiotics by ED physicians despite PCR confirmation of viral cause.
Retrospective, observational analysis of patients with PCR-diagnosed VRI discharged from 3 acute-care hospital EDs within 1 health system.
In total, 323 patients were discharged from the ED with a VRI diagnosis, of whom 68 were prescribed antibiotics (21.1%). These patients were older (median, 59.5 vs 43 years; P = .04), experienced symptoms longer (median, 4 vs 2 days; P = .002), were more likely to have received antibiotics in the preceding 7 days (27.9% vs 9.8%; P < .001), and had higher proportions of abnormal chest X-rays (64.5% vs 28.4%; P < .001). Patients were more likely to receive antibiotics for a diagnosis of pneumonia (39.7% vs 1.6%; P < .001) or otitis media (7.4% vs 0.4%; P = .002), and were less likely with diagnosis of upper respiratory infection (2.9% vs 13.7%; P = .02) or influenza (20.6% vs 44.3%; P < .001).
Despite a diagnosis of VRI, one-fifth of ED patients were prescribed antibiotics. Patient characteristics including age, duration of symptoms, abnormal chest X-rays, and specific diagnosis may increase provider concern for concurrent bacterial infections. Opportunities exist for antimicrobial stewardship strategies to incorporate rapid diagnostics in promoting judicious antibiotic usage in the ED.
Little is known about the combined use of benzodiazepines and antidepressants in older psychiatric patients. This study examined the prescription pattern of concurrent benzodiazepines in older adults treated with antidepressants in Asia, and explored its demographic and clinical correlates.
The data of 955 older adults with any type of psychiatric disorders were extracted from the database of the Research on Asian Psychotropic Prescription Patterns for Antidepressants (REAP-AD) project. Demographic and clinical characteristics were recorded using a standardized protocol and data collection procedure. Both univariate and multiple logistic regression analyses were performed.
The proportion of benzodiazepine and antidepressant combination in this cohort was 44.3%. Multiple logistic regression analysis revealed that higher doses of antidepressants, younger age (<65 years), inpatients, public hospital, major comorbid medical conditions, antidepressant types, and country/territory were significantly associated with more frequent co-prescription of benzodiazepines and antidepressants.
Nearly, half of the older adults treated with antidepressants in Asia are prescribed concurrent benzodiazepines. Given the potentially adverse effects of benzodiazepines, the rationale of benzodiazepines and antidepressants co-prescription needs to be revisited.
An updated compilation of published and new data of major-ion (Ca, Cl, K, Mg, Na, NO3, SO4) and methylsulfonate (MS) concentrations in snow from 520 Antarctic sites is provided by the national ITASE (International Trans-Antarctic Scientific Expedition) programmes of Australia, Brazil, China, Germany, Italy, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, Norway, the United Kingdom, the United States and the national Antarctic programme of Finland. The comparison shows that snow chemistry concentrations vary by up to four orders of magnitude across Antarctica and exhibit distinct geographical patterns. The Antarctic-wide comparison of glaciochemical records provides a unique opportunity to improve our understanding of the fundamental factors that ultimately control the chemistry of snow or ice samples. This paper aims to initiate data compilation and administration in order to provide a framework for facilitation of Antarctic-wide snow chemistry discussions across all ITASE nations and other contributing groups. The data are made available through the ITASE web page (http://www2.umaine.edu/itase/content/syngroups/snowchem.html) and will be updated with new data as they are provided. In addition, recommendations for future research efforts are summarized.
Extended-spectrum β-lactamase (ESBL) production has been very rare in serotype K1 Klebsiella pneumoniae ST23 strains, which are well-known invasive community strains. Among 92 ESBL-producing strains identified in 218 isolates from nine Asian countries, serotype K1 K. pneumoniae strains were screened. Two ESBL-producing K. pneumoniae isolates from Singapore and Indonesia were determined to be serotype K1 and ST23. Their plasmids, which contain CTX-M-15 genes, are transferable rendering the effective transfer of ESBL resistance plasmids to other organisms.
It has been reported that the characteristics of a very old wood charcoal sample are different from those of modern wood charcoal according to its state of preservation (Cohen-Ofri et al. 2006; Rebollo et al. 2008). It can be assumed that these differences may lead to some difficulties when radiocarbon dating very old wood charcoal samples. To investigate this problem, we studied a carbonized trunk of Prunus pendula for. acendens tree buried in lava and found at the Hantan River lava plateau on the Korean Peninsula. The 14C date of this sample was previously measured as >30,000 BP. However, separate 14C results of its outer crust and inner wood showed a considerable difference, exceeding the estimated age differences by tree-ring counting. To study the reason for this discrepancy, optical microscopy and FTIR (Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy) were performed to examine the differences in the structural and chemical states of the samples. For reference data and to expand our understanding of very old wood charcoal, we applied the same analysis tools (AMS, FTIR, FE-SEM, EDS, and optical microscopy) to a variety of wood charcoals and original wood. From these analyses, we noticed considerable chemical changes in the outer crust sample, and this might explain the age discrepancy. Although it seems that the age difference might be due to the digestion of 14C-free CO2 from a volcanic environment, this explanation would not account for such a large value in the age difference.
Two cases of hospital-acquired listeriosis were linked to a commercially produced, pasteurized ice cream mix. Manufacturers should implement safety measures from the Food Safety Modernization Act to minimize the risk of Listeria contamination. Dietary guidelines for persons at high risk of listeriosis may need revision to recognize the potential risk from pasteurized products.
The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of maternal protein or energy restriction on hormonal and metabolic status of pregnant goats during late gestation and their postnatal male kids. Forty-five pregnant goats were fed a control (CON), 40% protein-restricted (PR) or 40% energy-restricted (ER) diet from 90 days of gestation until parturition. Plasma of mothers (90, 125 and 145 days of gestation) and kids (6 weeks of age) were sampled to determine metabolites and hormones. Glucose concentration for pregnant goats subjected to PR or ER was less (P<0.001) than that of CON goats at 125 and 145 days of gestation. However, plasma nonesterified fatty acids concentration was greater (P<0.01) at 125 and 145 days for PR and ER than CON. Protein restriction increased (P<0.01) maternal cortisol concentration by 145 days of gestation, and ER decreased (P<0.01) maternal insulin concentration at 125 days of gestation. Moreover, maternal amino acid (AA) concentrations were affected by nutritional restriction, with greater (P<0.05) total AA (TAA) and nonessential AA (NEAA) for PR goats but less (P<0.05) TAA and NEAA for ER goats at 125 days of gestation. After 6 weeks of nutritional recovery, plasma concentrations of most metabolic and hormonal parameters in restricted kids were similar to CON kids, except for reduced (P<0.05) insulin concentration in ER, and reduced (P<0.05) Asp concentration in PR and ER kids. These results provide information on potential metabolic mechanisms responsible for fetal programming.
Batch cultures of mixed rumen micro-organisms were used to evaluate varying enzyme products with high xylanase activity (EPX), four of which were recombinant single xylanase activity developmental enzyme products (EPX1–EPX4, products of xylanase genes derived from Trichoderma harzianum, Trichoderma reesei, Orpinomyces and Aspergillus oryzae, respectively), for their potential to improve in vitro ruminal fermentation of three forages [maize (Zea mays) stover (MS), rice (Oryza sativa) straw (RS) and Guimu No. 1 grass (Pennisetum americanum×Pennisetum purpureum, GM)]. The enzyme product EPX5, derived from Trichoderma longibrachiatum, was used as a positive control that could improve in vitro fermentation of forages. Enzymes were supplied at dose rates of 0 (control), 20 (low), 50 (medium) and 80 (high) enzymic units of xylanase/g of dry matter (DM). There were no interactions between EPX and dose for the fermentation characteristics evaluated. Increasing EPX dose linearly increased gas production (GP) kinetic characters [i.e. asymptotic GP (VF), half time when GP is half of the theoretical maximum GP (t0·5), and initial fractional rate of degradation (FRD0)] and methane (CH4) production from RS and GM at 24 h, and increased degradability of DM at 24 h for MS and RS. A linear increase in degradability of neutral detergent fibre (NDF) of the three forages at 24 h was observed with increasing dose of EPX, but at 48 h only NDF degradability of RS was increased. There were differences in the effects of EPX on degradability of DM and NDF from RS at 24 h, with EPX4 having the highest and EPX1 having the lowest. In addition, increasing EPX dose linearly increased acetate proportion at 24 h and total volatile fatty acids (TVFA) at 48 h in MS. Increasing EPX dose linearly increased TVFA at 24 h, and ammonia-nitrogen (NH3-N) concentration at 48 h in RS. For GM, linear or quadratic effects of dose on acetate and butyrate concentration were observed at 24 and 48 h. The present study indicates that applying EPX to low-quality forages has the potential to improve rumen degradability and utilization. Furthermore, EPX from different sources differed in their effects when applied at the same dose rate, with the responses being forage-specific. For RS, the EPX derived from A. oryzae showed the greatest positive effects on forage degradation; whereas for MS and GM, the source of micro-organism where EPX gene was derived did not affect the degradation, with little difference among the EPX evaluated.
Depression is common after acute coronary syndrome (ACS) with adverse effects on prognosis. There is little evidence on whether depression treatment improves quality of life (QoL) in ACS patients. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of co-morbid depression and its treatment on QoL in ACS.
In total, 1152 patients were recruited at baseline, 2–14 weeks after a confirmed ACS episode, and 828 were followed 1 year thereafter. Of 446 baseline participants with co-morbid depressive disorders, 300 were randomized to a 24-week double blind trial of escitalopram or placebo, while the remaining 146 received medical treatment only (MTO). QoL was measured by the World Health Organization Quality of Life –Abbreviated form (WHOQOL-BREF).
At baseline, QoL was significantly lower in patients with co-morbid depressive disorder than those without. QoL improvement was significantly greater in those receiving escitalopram than those receiving placebo over the 24-week treatment period. In the 1-year follow-up, the better outcomes associated with escitalopram remained evident against both placebo and MTO.
Depression was significantly associated with worse QoL even in patients with recently developed ACS. Depression treatment was associated with QoL improvement in ACS patients in the 24-week treatment period, the effects of which extended to 1 year.
We conducted a cross-sectional seroepidemiological study in 2012–2013 to determine the seroprevalence of varicella-zoster virus (VZV) in adolescents and adults living in Korea, where varicella vaccination has been recommended universally at age 12–15 months since 2005. Residual serum samples were collected from 1196 healthy adults and adolescents aged ⩾10 years between November 2012 and March 2013. The fluorescent antibody to membrane antigen (FAMA) test and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) were performed to determine the seroprevalence of VZV. The seroprevalences of VZV were compared between six age groups: 10–19, 20–29, 30–39, 40–49, 50–59, and ⩾60 years. The seroprevalence of VZV in the entire study cohort was 99·1% according to the FAMA test and 93·1% as determined by ELISA. The seroprevalences of the six age groups were as follows: 96·0%, 99·5%, 99·5%, 99·5%, 100%, and 100%, respectively, by the FAMA test, and 83·3%, 93·0%, 93·0%, 97·5%, 94·5%, and 97·5%, respectively, by ELISA. Seroprevalence increased significantly with age (P < 0·001); moreover, the seroprevalence in subjects aged 10–19 years was significantly lower than in other age groups (P < 0·001), as measured by both the FAMA test and ELISA. Thus, strategies to increase protective immunity against VZV in teenagers are necessary.
After an outbreak of pandemic influenza A/H1N1 (pH1N1) virus, we had previously reported the emergence of a recombinant canine influenza virus (CIV) between the pH1N1 virus and the classic H3N2 CIV. Our ongoing routine surveillance isolated another reassortant H3N2 CIV carrying the matrix gene of the pH1N1 virus from 2012. The infection dynamics of this H3N2 CIV variant (CIV/H3N2mv) were investigated in dogs and ferrets via experimental infection and transmission. The CIV/H3N2mv-infected dogs and ferrets produced typical symptoms of respiratory disease, virus shedding, seroconversion, and direct-contact transmissions. Although indirect exposure was not presented for ferrets, CIV/H3N2mv presented higher viral replication in MDCK cells and more efficient transmission was observed in ferrets compared to classic CIV H3N2. This study demonstrates the effect of reassortment of the M gene of pH1N1 in CIV H3N2.
The Order Asaphida was grouped by the presence of a ventral median suture and a globular protaspis. The Superfamily Trinucleoidea has been assigned to the Order Asaphida, based on the recognition of a globular protaspis in the Ordovician representatives of the group, and the presence of a ventral median suture in the middle Cambrian genus Liostracina which has been regarded as a primitive sister-group to the post-Cambrian trinucleoideans. Recent studies demonstrate that the ventral median suture and the globular protaspis could have evolved multiple times in the trilobite evolutionary history, casting doubt on the traditional concept of the Order Asaphida. Inclusion of the Trinucleoidea into the Order Asaphida, therefore, has to be tested. It has recently been revealed that Liostracina simesi Jago and Cooper, 2005 did not possess a ventral median suture, implying that there could have been variable types of ventral suture within the genus Liostracina. Here we report the ontogeny of Liostracina tangwangzhaiensis n. sp. from the Cambrian Series 3 (middle Cambrian) strata of Shandong Province of North China. The material for this study includes protaspides, which are of flat, benthic morphology, contrasting to the globular protaspid morphology of the Ordovician trinucleoideans. The benthic protaspid morphology of L. tangwangzhaiensis indicates an independent evolution of the globular protaspis within the Superfamily Trinucleoidea. Together with the variable types of ventral suture within the genus Liostracina, the benthic protaspid morphology of Liostracina leads us to propose that the Superfamily Trinucleoidea be excluded from the Order Asaphida.
The Arabidopsis gene AVP1 encodes a vacuolar H+-translocating inorganic pyrophosphatase (enzyme classification (EC) 126.96.36.199) that functions as an electronic proton pump in the vacuolar membrane and affects growth development and the stress response in plants. The current study was conducted to evaluate the molecular properties of the Arabidopsis thaliana vacuolar H+-pyrophosphatase (AVP1) gene in rice (Oryza sativa L.). Incorporation and expression of the transgene was confirmed by semi-quantitative reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and quantitative real-time PCR. Expression of the AVP1 gene in transgenic rice plants (TRP1 and TRP2) resulted in a significantly enhanced tolerance to 5·8 g/l NaCl under greenhouse conditions when compared with the control wild-type (WT) rice plants. Augmented AVP1 expression in the transgenic rice plants (TRP) also affected total biomass and improved ion homoeostasis through increased accumulation of Na+ ions in whole tissues when compared with control WT rice plants under high salinity conditions. The photochemical yield (Fv/Fm) values of TRP were higher than those of the WT rice plants, even though the values decreased over time in both the WT and transgenic (TRP1 to TRP8) rice plants. Furthermore, rice grain yield and biomass of the TRP were at least 15% higher based on culm and root weights, and panicle and spikelet numbers when compared with those of the WT rice plants during the 2010 and 2010 growing seasons in South Korea. Thus, these results suggest that ectopic AVP1 expression conferred tolerance and stress resistance to genetically modified transgenic crop plants by improving cellular ion homoeostasis in response to saline conditions, which enhanced rice yield and biomass under natural conditions in paddy fields.
Equine influenza virus (EIV) causes a highly contagious respiratory disease in equids, with confirmed outbreaks in Europe, America, North Africa, and Asia. Although China, Mongolia, and Japan have reported equine influenza outbreaks, Korea has not. Since 2011, we have conducted a routine surveillance programme to detect EIV at domestic stud farms, and isolated H3N8 EIV from horses showing respiratory disease symptoms. Here, we characterized the genetic and biological properties of this novel Korean H3N8 EIV isolate. This H3N8 EIV isolate belongs to the Florida sublineage clade 1 of the American H3N8 EIV lineage, and surprisingly, possessed a non-structural protein (NS) gene segment, where 23 bases of the NS1-encoding region were naturally truncated. Our preliminary biological data indicated that this truncation did not affect virus replication; its effect on biological and immunological properties of the virus will require further study.
The newer cyanide antidote, hydroxocobalamin, due to its pigmentation, has been found to cause interferences in some laboratory assays. Co-oximetry may also be affected by hydroxocobalamin, leading to false elevations in hemoglobin concentration, methemoglobin, carboxyhemoglobin, and false decreases in oxyhemoglobin. The Masimo Radical-7 is a medical device that performs noninvasive oximetry and estimates hemoglobin (Hb) concentration and percent carboxyhemoglobin (COHb), methemoglobin (MetHb), and oxyhemoglobin saturation (O2Hb).
The study sought to determine the effect of hydroxocobalamin on noninvasive measurement of hemoglobin indices using the Masimo Radical-7 monitor.
Seven asymptomatic volunteers who were unexposed to cyanide had baseline heart rate (HR), blood pressure (BP), and oximeter measurements recorded followed by an infusion of five grams of hydroxocobalamin over 15 minutes. The above parameters were subsequently recorded at: 5, 10, 15, 30 and 60 minutes post infusion. Data were analyzed by calculating the area under the curve (AUC) for each variable and comparing the results to expected values by paired t tests. Expected AUC values were calculated by extrapolating baseline values across the entire time period.
The mean differences from baseline values with 95% confidence intervals and t tests of mean difference were: SBP: 11 mm Hg (95% CI, 0-22; P = .051); HR: -9 (95% CI, -15 to -3; P = .01); Hb: -0.1 (95% CI, -0.7 to 0.4; P = .57); O2Hb: 0 g/dL (95% CI, -1 to 1; P = .41); COHb: -1 (95% CI, -3 to 1; P = .25); MetHb: -0.2 (95% CI, -0.3 to 0; P = .03).
After infusion of hydroxocobalamin there was a significant elevation of systolic blood pressure and decrease in heart rate. There were no significant differences in Hb, O2Hb, and COHb. Although percent methemoglobin concentrations were statistically lower, the authors feel this difference is of trivial clinical significance.
The administration of hydroxocobalamin does not significantly impact noninvasive oximetry.
CashinB, MatlockA, KangC, ReynoldsP, WillsB. Effect of Hydroxocobalamin on Surface Oximetry in Nonexposed Humans. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2013;28(4):1-3.
A survey of the Milky Way disk and the Magellanic System at the wavelengths of the 21-cm atomic hydrogen (H i) line and three 18-cm lines of the OH molecule will be carried out with the Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder telescope. The survey will study the distribution of H i emission and absorption with unprecedented angular and velocity resolution, as well as molecular line thermal emission, absorption, and maser lines. The area to be covered includes the Galactic plane (|b| < 10°) at all declinations south of δ = +40°, spanning longitudes 167° through 360°to 79° at b = 0°, plus the entire area of the Magellanic Stream and Clouds, a total of 13 020 deg2. The brightness temperature sensitivity will be very good, typically σT≃ 1 K at resolution 30 arcsec and 1 km s−1. The survey has a wide spectrum of scientific goals, from studies of galaxy evolution to star formation, with particular contributions to understanding stellar wind kinematics, the thermal phases of the interstellar medium, the interaction between gas in the disk and halo, and the dynamical and thermal states of gas at various positions along the Magellanic Stream.
We have observed the parts of the second quadrant of the Galactic Plane in 13CO(1-0) using the multibeam receiver system installed on the 14 m telescope at Taeduk Radio Astronomy Observatory (TRAO). The first target region A (L=108° to 112°.5) is the part of the 12CO Outer Galactic Plane Survey (OGS; Heyer et al. 1998), and it is for the exact Galactic plane with the latitude range of +1 and -1 degree. A total of 48,000 spectra (about 9 square degrees) were obtained on 50″ grid. Two following regions were also observed; Region B: L = 120° ∼ 121°.7, B = −1° ∼ +1° (38,000 spectra) Region C: L = 130° 132°, B = −1° ∼ +1° (42,000 spectra). Eventually all the regions of the OGS will be covered. The selected velocity resolution is 0.63 km s−1 and the covered velocity is 320 km s−1, from −210 to 110 km s−1. The typical system temperature is ranging from 400 to 800 K, and average sensitivity per channel is 0.17 K.
We developed a new reduction method, which effectively deals with a relatively noisy 3-dimensional database. After using simple linear baseline subtraction, we mainly used the IRAF twod.longslit.background task in 3D within some scripts, as well as IRAF tasks dealing with statistics, and a revised FCRAO reduction package, which is working within IRAF as external user's tasks. The collected 13CO database will be manipulated with pre-existing 12CO data to get several physical parameters. As it is located in the second quadrant, the kinematic distances of the individual clouds, which will be identified, can be estimated straightforwardly without any distance ambiguity. In this meeting we present the reduction method, integrated intensity maps, and spatial-velocity maps. We intend to clarify any difference of their characteristics between the clouds in the Outer Galaxy and Inner Galaxy using our data base.
The present TRAO receiver system has aged, and thus its performance level degraded. However, we have a plan to renovate our receiver system to a brand new one within the next two years. This will speed up the TOGS project. At present, it costs substantial amount of time to homogeneously reduce the spectra obtained with our present receiver system. To compensate this, we invested more integration time, and developed more advanced reduction methods (see above). A future multibeam array receiver system at the TRAO would be at least 16 beams with most recent mixers (Tsys ∼ 150 K at 110GHz), hopefully.
This study investigated the carriage of antimicrobial resistant Haemophilus influenzae in 582 healthy children attending kindergarten or elementary school at four intervals over a 9-month period in Seoul, Korea. Diverse colonization patterns and a lower level of long-term persistent carriage by H. influenzae status were evident in this study. Colonizing H. influenzae isolates showed a high rate of resistance to β-lactams including ampicillin (51·9%), cefaclor (52·1%), and amoxicillin/clavulanate (16·3%). Based on the ampicillin resistance mechanism, H. influenzae isolates were categorized as β-lactamase-negative, ampicillin-susceptible (BLNAS) (48·1%), β-lactamase-positive, ampicillin-resistant (BLPAR) (22·6%), β-lactamase-negative, ampicillin-resistant (BLNAR) (22·8%), and β-lactamase-positive, amoxicillin/clavulanate-resistant (BLPACR) strains (6·5%). This study provides the first evidence of a high prevalence (22·8%) of BLNAR strains of H. influenzae nasal carriage in healthy children attending kindergarten or the first 2 years of elementary school in Korea. The high carriage of these resistant strains in overcrowded urban settings may create reservoirs for development of H. influenzae-resistant strains.