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The Mediterranean diet offers a range of health benefits. However, previous studies indicate that the restricted consumption of red meat in the diet may affect long-term sustainability in non-Mediterranean countries. A 24-week randomised controlled parallel cross-over design compared a Mediterranean diet supplemented with 2–3 serves per week of fresh, lean pork (MedPork) with a low-fat control diet (LF). Thirty-three participants at risk of CVD followed each intervention for 8 weeks, with an 8-week washout period separating interventions. The primary outcome was home-measured systolic blood pressure. Secondary outcomes included diastolic blood pressure, fasting lipids, glucose, insulin, C-reactive protein (CRP), body composition and dietary adherence. During the MedPork intervention, participants achieved high adherence to dietary guidelines. Compared with the MedPork intervention, the LF intervention led to greater reductions in weight (Δ = −0·65; 95 % CI −0·04, −1·25 kg, P = 0·04), BMI (Δ = −0·25; 95 % CI −0·03, −0·47 kg/m2, P = 0·01) and waist circumference (Δ = −1·40; 95 % CI −0·45, −2·34 cm, P < 0·01). No significant differences were observed for blood pressure, lipids, glucose, insulin or CRP. These findings indicate that Australians are capable of adhering to a Mediterranean diet with 2–3 weekly serves of fresh, lean pork. Larger intervention studies are now required to demonstrate clinical efficacy of the diet in populations with elevated blood pressure.
The weak thermal emission from the largest minor planets can be detected in the microwave regime by the Very Large Array (VLA). Signal-to-noise ratios are sufficiently high to permit precise measurement of the positions of these objects at all points in their orbits with respect to background extragalactic sources. We are in the process of obtaining observations of astrometric accuracy for minor planets 1 Ceres, 2 Pallas, 4 Vesta, and 10 Hygeia.
Minor planets have historically served as “test particles” in the solar system, and optical observations of these objects have been valuable in the determination of fundamental astronomical constants. In particular, optical observations of minor planets have played an important role in the establishment of the fundamental optical reference frame by permitting the determination of the orientation of the Earth's orbit relative to the stars defining the frame.
Similarly, radio observations of these bodies can play a corresponding role in the establishment of a fundamental radio reference frame. Our observations will provide a direct link between the dynamical and radio reference frames, and provide important information on the relationship between the radio and optical reference frames.
There is a lack of evidence pointing to the efficacy of any specific psychotherapy for adults with anorexia nervosa (AN). The aim of this study was to compare three psychological treatments for AN: Specialist Supportive Clinical Management, Maudsley Model Anorexia Nervosa Treatment for Adults and Enhanced Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.
A multi-centre randomised controlled trial was conducted with outcomes assessed at pre-, mid- and post-treatment, and 6- and 12-month follow-up by researchers blind to treatment allocation. All analyses were intention-to-treat. One hundred and twenty individuals meeting diagnostic criteria for AN were recruited from outpatient treatment settings in three Australian cities and offered 25–40 sessions over a 10-month period. Primary outcomes were body mass index (BMI) and eating disorder psychopathology. Secondary outcomes included depression, anxiety, stress and psychosocial impairment.
Treatment was completed by 60% of participants and 52.5% of the total sample completed 12-month follow-up. Completion rates did not differ between treatments. There were no significant differences between treatments on continuous outcomes; all resulted in clinically significant improvements in BMI, eating disorder psychopathology, general psychopathology and psychosocial impairment that were maintained over follow-up. There were no significant differences between treatments with regard to the achievement of a healthy weight (mean = 50%) or remission (mean = 28.3%) at 12-month follow-up.
The findings add to the evidence base for these three psychological treatments for adults with AN, but the results underscore the need for continued efforts to improve outpatient treatments for this disorder.
Zeeman-Doppler Imaging enables one to estimate the short term temporal evolution of surface brightness and magnetic structures, under the effect of differential rotation. We present here spectropolarimetric observations secured between 1998 and 2002 for two evolved active stars: the K1 subgiant of the RS CVn system HR 1099 and the single FK Com giant HD 199178. Differential rotation is detected both from brightness and magnetic images, indicating that the rotational shear, roughly solar in magnitude for the single star, is significantly weaker in the binary system. This result suggests that tidal forces, rather than stellar evolution, could be responsible for the lower rotational shear and thus the longer spot lifetime reported for binary systems.
Helicobacter pylori imparts a considerable burden to public health. Infections are mainly acquired in childhood and can lead to chronic diseases, including gastric ulcers and cancer. The bacterium subsists in water, but the environment's role in transmission remains poorly understood. The nationally representative National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) was examined for environmental risk factors associated with H. pylori seroprevalence. Data from 1999–2000 were examined and weighted to represent the US population. Multivariable logistic regression estimated adjusted odds ratios (aOR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) for associations with seropositivity. Self-reported general health condition was inversely associated with seropositivity. Of participants aged <20 years, seropositivity was significantly associated with having a well as the source of home tap water (aOR 1·7, 95% CI 1·1–2·6) and living in a more crowded home (aOR 2·3, 95% CI 1·5–3·7). Of adults aged ⩾20 years, seropositivity was not associated with well water or crowded living conditions, but adults in soil-related occupations had significantly higher odds of seropositivity compared to those in non-soil-related occupations (aOR 1·9, 95% CI 1·2–2·9). Exposures to both well water and occupationally related soil increased the effect size of adults' odds of seropositivity compared to non-exposed adults (aOR 2·7, 95% CI 1·3-5·6). Environmental exposures (well-water usage and occupational contact with soil) play a role in H. pylori transmission. A disproportionate burden of infection is associated with poor health and crowded living conditions, but risks vary by age and race/ethnicity. These findings could help inform interventions to reduce the burden of infections in the United States.
A randomized controlled trial of three school-based programs and a no-intervention control group was conducted to evaluate their efficacy in reducing eating disorder and obesity risk factors.
A total of 1316 grade 7 and 8 girls and boys (mean age = 13.21 years) across three Australian states were randomly allocated to: Media Smart; Life Smart; the Helping, Encouraging, Listening and Protecting Peers (HELPP) initiative; or control (usual school class). Risk factors were measured at baseline, post-program (5 weeks later), and at the 6- and 12-month follow-ups.
Media Smart girls had half the rate of onset of clinically significant concerns about shape and weight than control girls at the 12-month follow-up. Media Smart and HELPP girls reported significantly lower weight and shape concern than Life Smart girls at the 12-month follow-up. Media Smart and control girls scored significantly lower than HELPP girls on eating concerns and perceived pressure at the 6-month follow-up. Media Smart and HELPP boys experienced significant benefit on media internalization compared with control boys and these were sustained at the 12-month follow-up in Media Smart boys. A group × time effect found that Media Smart participants reported more physical activity than control and HELPP participants at the 6-month follow-up, while a main effect for group found Media Smart participants reported less screen time than controls.
Media Smart was the only program to show benefit on both disordered eating and obesity risk factors. Whilst further investigations are indicated, this study suggests that this program is a promising approach to reducing risk factors for both problems.
An extremely weak circularly-polarized signature was recently detected in the spectral lines of the Am star Sirius A. With a prominent positive lobe, the shape of the phase-averaged Stokes V line profile is atypical of stellar Zeeman signatures, casting doubts on its magnetic origin. We report here on ultra-deep spectropolarimetric observations of two more bright Am stars: β Uma and θ Leo. Stokes V line signatures are detected in both objects, with a shape and amplitude similar to the one observed on Sirius A. We demonstrate that the amplitude of the Stokes V line profiles depend on various line parameters (Landé factor, wavelength, depth) as expected from a Zeeman signature, confirming that extremely weak magnetic fields are likely present in a large fraction of Am stars. We suggest that the strong asymmetry of the polarized signatures, systematically observed so far in Am stars and never reported in strongly magnetic Ap stars, bears unique information about the structure and dynamics of the thin surface convective shell of Am stars.
We present a preliminary 3D potential field extrapolation model of the joint magnetosphere of the close accreting PMS binary V4046 Sgr. The model is derived from magnetic maps obtained as part of a coordinated optical and X-ray observing program.
We study the photocurrent from photoexcited charged carriers excited with lasers of energy both above and below the energy gap in CdS nanostructures. We observe non-linear photocurrents in CdS nanosheet devices in the metal-semiconductor-metal configuration with Schottky contacts for sub-band gap excitations. Analysis of two-photon absorption dominated photocurrents reveals a nonlinear coefficient of β = 2 cm/GW for these nanosheet devices, which is comparable to those of bulk CdS. We demonstrate the use of the photocurrent polarization measurements to determine the orientation of atoms in the nanosheet.
Early vigour in wheat (Triticum aestivum) is an important physiological trait to improve water-use efficiency and grain yield, especially on light soils in Mediterranean-type climates. Potential interactions for plant stand and seedling vigour between seed density and various seed quality treatments were examined for wheat grown in two experiments, conducted under controlled and field environments in Western Australia. Seed lots were graded into seed size classes and seed density fractions using saturated solutions of ammonium sulphate or sodium polytungstate. Dense seed improved plant stands or produced seedlings with greater early seedling vigour than their low-density counterparts in all three field environments. Artificial ageing reduced germination and emergence in the controlled environment. When grown in the field at Merredin, Western Australia, on the sandy soil, plant development was delayed with aged seed, and total leaf area and dry weight of plants were reduced. Fungicide application diminished total plant dry weight in sandy soils, but had a much larger detrimental effect when applied to aged and low-density seeds than normal seeds, retarding development, total leaf area and total plant dry weight. Our results indicate that an increase in seed density, particularly in small seed, can potentially improve plant stand and seedling vigour independently of seed size, and may be especially important for wheat grown on sandy soils of poor fertility and low water-holding capacity. The results also suggest consistency in seedling vigour may benefit from combined screening against small seed size and low seed density, which may also reduce the likelihood of adverse reactions to seed-applied fungicides. More attention should be paid to seed density as a valuable trait for improved reliability in plant stand and seedling vigour.
A combustion-synthesis method [Chick et al., Materials Letters 10, 6 (1990)] has been adapted for the efficient preparation of pure barium ferrite particles, BaFe12O19. Solutions of Ba(NO3)2 and Fe(NO3)3 · 9H2O were mixed in stoichiometric amounts and glycine (aminoacetic acid) was then added according to the desired glycine / nitrate ratio. The solution was heated to around 200°C, when combustion occured, yielding a highly magnetic ash, which XRD suggests consists of extremely fine-grained γ-Fe2O3 and Ba3Fe2O6. Subsequent heat-treatments of 1050°C for 1.5 hr or 1200°C for 1 hr converted the ash to pure barium ferrite, as determined by XRD and Mdssbauer spectroscopy. Single-crystal platelets of barium ferrite, identified by SEM, varied dramatically in size with heat-treatment (diameter ∼0.2 pm and 6 μm, respectively), as did coercivity, measured by VSM (∼5000 Oe and 2500 Oe, resp.), while magnetization was unaffected.
Molecular simulations that predict the molecular mechanical response of alpha-helical biopolymers with a reinforcing intra-molecular hydrogen bonding network, viz,, a ‘spring-like’ behavior, are presented in this study. Mechanical properties of extended biopolymer strands based on naturally occurring amino acids, namely poly(L-A1a) and for comparison poly(LGlu), versus synthetic PPTA containing an amide bond, are compared to those assuming alpha-helical structures. Thus, the pivotal role of such motifs in biological systems utilizing superior compressive mechanical properties can be inferred.
There is a growing need for optical fiber coatings that can sustain higher temperatures than present materials permit. To date, polyimides are used predominantly but they generally are difficult to process and usually require multiple depositions to achieve the desired film thickness. Perfluorocyclobutyl (PFCB) aryl ether polymers have demonstrated much success as processable and amorphous fluoropolymers, with particular emphasis on high performance optical applications. This work discusses recent efforts into perfluorocyclobutyl aryl ether polymer-based optical fiber coatings. A series of silica-based optical fibers were drawn with differing PFCB polymer coatings compositions and molecular weights on a Heathway draw tower. Results include a more than doubled usage temperature of coating (decomposition temperatures (Td) in nitrogen and air were above 450 °C) without affecting fiber mechanical properties and comparable isothermal stability to conventional coatings, except with a >150 °C higher temperature. Preliminary results of the first successful coating of optical fibers by PFCB polymers will be presented herein, as well as future endeavors.
Among the A/B stars, about 5% host large-scale organised magnetic fields. These magnetic stars show also abundance anomalies in their spectra, and are therefore called the magnetic Ap/Bp stars. Most of these stars are also slow rotators compared to the normal A and B stars.
Today, one of the greatest challenges concerning the Ap/Bp stars is to understand the origin of their slow rotation and their magnetic fields. The favoured hypothesis for the latter is that the fields are fosils, which implies that the magnetic fields subsist throughout the different evolutionary phases, and in particular during the pre-main sequence phase. The existence of magnetic fields at the pre-main sequence phase is also required to explain the slow rotation of Ap/Bp stars. During the last 3 years we performed a spectropolarimetric survey of the Herbig Ae/Be stars in the field and in young clusters, in order to investigate their magnetism and rotation. These investigations have resulted in the detection and/or confirmation of magnetic fields in 8 Herbig Ae/Be stars, ranging in mass from 2 to nearly 15 solar masses. In this paper I will present the results of our survey, as well as their implications for the origin and evolution of the magnetic fields and rotation of the A and B stars.
The atmospheres of chemically peculiar stars can be highly structured in both the horizontal and vertical dimensions. While most prevalent in the magnetic stars, these structures can also exist in non-magnetic stars. In addition to providing an important window to understanding the physical processes at play in these complex atmospheres, they can also be exploited to study stellar pulsations. This article reviews contributions to the session “A 3D look into the atmosphere” of the Joint Discussion “Progress in understanding the physics of Ap and related stars”. It is divided into 3 sections: “Magnetic field and surface structures”, “Pulsations in the atmospheres of roAp stars/inversions”, and “Spectral synthesis/atmospheric models”.
A comparative study of the low temperature conductivity of an ensemble of multiwall
carbon nanotubes and semiconductor nanowires is presented. The
quasi one-dimensional samples are made in nanoporous
templates by electrodeposition and CVD growth. Three different
structures are studied in parallel: multiwall carbon nanotubes,
nanowires, and silicon nanowires. It is shown that the Coulomb blockade
regime dominates the electronic transport below 50 K, together with weak and
strong localization effects. In the Coulomb blockade regime, a
scaling law of the conductance measured as a function of the
temperature and the voltage is systematically observed. This allows
a single scaling parameter α to be defined. This parameter
accounts for the specific realization of the “disorder”, and plays
the role of a fingerprint for each sample. Correlations between
α and the conductance measured as a function of temperature
and voltage, as a function of the perpendicular magnetic field, and
as a function of the temperature and voltage in the localized regime
below 1 K have been performed. Three universal laws are reported.
They relate the coefficient α (1) to the normalized Coulomb
, (2) to the phase coherence length
, and (3) to the activation energy
. These observations suggest a description of the wires
and tubes in terms of a chain of quantum dots; the wires and tubes
break into a series of islands. The quantum dots are defined by
conducting islands with a typical length on the order of the phase
coherence length separated by poorly conducting regions (low
density of carriers or potential barriers due to defects). A
corresponding model is developed in order to put the three
universal laws in a common frame.
Studies of stellar magnetism at the pre-main sequence phase can provide important new insights into the detailed physics of the late stages of star formation, and into the observed properties of main sequence stars. This is especially true at intermediate stellar masses, where magnetic fields are strong and globally organised, and therefore most amenable to direct study. This talk reviews recent high-precision ESPaDOnS observations of pre-main sequence Herbig Ae-Be stars, which are yielding qualitatively new information about intermediate-mass stars: the origin and evolution of their magnetic fields, the role of magnetic fields in generating their spectroscopic activity and in mediating accretion in their late formative stages, and the factors influencing their rotational angular momentum.
‘Green rusts’ are a group of reduced Fe hydroxides with a pyroaurite-like structure. In a new occurrence, green rust is present as a 45–60 mm thick band which lies just below the surface (∼4 mm) of an ochreous deposit at an abandoned coal mine site. The sample is characterized by the presence of μm-sized hexagonal crystals which have been identified from SEM imaging. Chemical analyses reveal an Fe(II):Fe(III) ratio which is close to the characteristic 2:1 ratio, and XRD analysis identifies the material by characteristic lattice spacings. The green rust layer also contains aragonite which is not present in the surrounding ochre. Green rusts are important as they have the potential to be used in water treatment.