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White matter (WM) change plays an important role in age-related cognitive decline. In this review, we consider methodological advances with particular relevance to the role of WM in age-related changes in processing speed. In this context, intra-individual variability in processing speed performance has emerged as a sensitive proxy of cognitive and neurological decline while neuroimaging techniques used to assess WM change have become increasingly more sensitive. Together with a carefully designed task protocol, we emphasize that the combined implementation of intra-individual variability and neuroimaging techniques hold promise for specifying the WM-processing speed relationship with implications for normative and clinical samples. (JINS, 2014, 20, 1–6)
To examine the use of vitamin D supplements during infancy among the participants in an international infant feeding trial.
Information about vitamin D supplementation was collected through a validated FFQ at the age of 2 weeks and monthly between the ages of 1 month and 6 months.
Infants (n 2159) with a biological family member affected by type 1 diabetes and with increased human leucocyte antigen-conferred susceptibility to type 1 diabetes from twelve European countries, the USA, Canada and Australia.
Daily use of vitamin D supplements was common during the first 6 months of life in Northern and Central Europe (>80 % of the infants), with somewhat lower rates observed in Southern Europe (>60 %). In Canada, vitamin D supplementation was more common among exclusively breast-fed than other infants (e.g. 71 % v. 44 % at 6 months of age). Less than 2 % of infants in the USA and Australia received any vitamin D supplementation. Higher gestational age, older maternal age and longer maternal education were study-wide associated with greater use of vitamin D supplements.
Most of the infants received vitamin D supplements during the first 6 months of life in the European countries, whereas in Canada only half and in the USA and Australia very few were given supplementation.
The present study investigates vertical distribution of fish size in three 12 m × 12 m
wide and 14 m deep sea cages stocked with Atlantic salmon of average weight from 3.5 to
3.7 kg, at commercial densities between 15.6 to 16.2 kg m-3, in Norway. For
each cage, individual fish weight were estimated by three 0.6 m × 0.6 m measuring frames
as fish swam through. The frames were positioned at 3, 6 and 9 m depth. Recordings were
carried out over five days per cage in succession, and during relatively stable
environmental conditions in late autumn 2010. In all cages, measured fish were 15−25%
smaller at 3 m compared to the average weights at 6 and 9 m depth. Largest average weight
difference between depths within one cage was 0.995 kg. The average weight at 6 and 9 m
was higher at night-time compared to daytime. Fish at the lower end of the weight spectrum
were predominantly registered at 3 m, while fish at the higher end of the spectrum were
mostly registered at the greater depths. Fish of average size were well represented at all
three depths. The fact that smaller fish swam shallower may be ascribed to natural
behavioural traits and introduce an important consideration in representative sampling
within commercial sea cages. In biomass estimations and sea lice counts size-dependent
vertical stratification needs to be accounted for.
Renewable energy can provide a host of benefits to society. In addition to the reduction of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, governments have enacted renewable energy (RE) policies to meet a number of objectives including the creation of local environmental and health benefits; facilitation of energy access, particularly for rural areas; advancement of energy security goals by diversifying the portfolio of energy technologies and resources; and improving social and economic development through potential employment opportunities. Energy access and social and economic development have been the primary drivers in developing countries whereas ensuring a secure energy supply and environmental concerns have been most important in developed countries.
An increasing number and variety of RE policies–motivated by a variety of factors–have driven substantial growth of RE technologies in recent years. Government policies have played a crucial role in accelerating the deployment of RE technologies. At the same time, not all RE policies have proven effective and efficient in rapidly or substantially increasing RE deployment. The focus of policies is broadening from a concentration almost entirely on RE electricity to include RE heating and cooling and transportation.
RE policies have promoted an increase in RE capacity installations by helping to overcome various barriers. Barriers specific to RE policymaking (e.g., a lack of information and awareness), to implementation (e.g., a lack of an educated and trained workforce to match developing RE technologies) and to financing (e.g., market failures) may further impede deployment of RE.
An all-printed organic smart pixel is achieved through the combination of an electrochemical transistor and an electrochromic display cell. Smart pixels of this kind are arranged into a cross-point matrix resulting in an active-addressed display. This type of display has been realized on coated fine paper, operates at voltages less than 2 Volts and exhibits good bistability properties. Here we report on the operation characteristics of electrochemical smart pixels in which the ion concentration of the electrolyte has been varied.
The HADES Europa mission concept aims to provide a framework for an astrobiological in-depth investigation of the Jupiter moon Europa, relying on existing technologies and feasibility. This mission study proposes a system consisting of an orbiter, lander and cryobot as a platform for detailed exploration of Europa. While the orbiter will investigate the presence of a liquid ocean and characterize Europa's internal structure, the lander will survey local dynamics of the ice layer and the surface environment. The lander releases a cryobot, that melts into the ice, will sample the pristine subsurface and is expected to provide data on organic and gaseous content and putative bio-signatures. In summary, we present the scientific objectives for an astrobiological investigation of Europa, resulting in a mission concept with a detailed evaluation of scientific instrumentation, mission sequences, basic design of the spacecraft, technology needs and cost estimations.
Lactic acid bacteria are probiotics widely used in functional food products, with a variety of beneficial effects reported. Recently, intense research has been carried out to provide insight into the mechanism of the action of probiotic bacteria. We have used gene array technology to map the pattern of changes in the global gene expression profile of the host caused by Lactobacillus administration. Affymetrix microarrays were applied to comparatively characterize differences in gene transcription in the distal ileum of normal microflora (NMF) and germ-free (GF) mice evoked by oral administration of two Lactobacillus strains used in fermented dairy products today – Lactobacillus paracasei ssp. paracasei F19 (L. F19) or Lactobacillus acidophilus NCFB 1748. We show that feeding either of the two strains caused very similar effects on the transcriptional profile of the host. Both L. F19 and L. acidophilus NCFB 1748 evoked a complex response in the gut, reflected by differential regulation of a number of genes involved in essential physiological functions such as immune response, regulation of energy homeostasis and host defence. Notably, the changes in intestinal gene expression caused by Lactobacillus were different in the mice raised under GF v. NMF conditions, underlying the complex and dynamic nature of the host-commensal relationship. Differential expression of an array of genes described in this report evokes novel hypothesis of possible interactions between the probiotic bacteria and the host organism and warrants further studies to evaluate the functional significance of these transcriptional changes on the metabolic profile of the host.
The possibility of using linkage disequilibrium mapping in natural plant populations was assessed.
In studying linkage disequilibrium among 137 mapped AFLP markers in four populations of sea
beet (Beta vulgaris ssp. maritima (L.) Arcang.) it was shown that tightly linked loci could be
detected by screening for associations. It was hypothesized that the short distances spanned by
linkage disequilibrium enable markers that are very tightly linked to a target gene to be identified.
The hypothesis was tested by whole-genome screening of AFLP markers for association with the
gene for the annual growth habit, the B gene, in a sample of 106 sea beets. Despite the dominant
nature of AFLP, two markers showing significant linkage disequilibrium with the B gene were
detected. The results indicate the potential use of linkage disequilibrium for gene mapping in
natural plant populations.
Young, old, alcohol intoxicated, and sleep deprived subjects studied weakly and strongly related word pairs, and were tested in lexical decision priming and cued recall. Results showed memory deficits for old, alcohol intoxicated, and sleep deprived subjects in cued recall of weakly related pairs. In contrast, there were no differences between these three groups and a control group of young subjects in cued recall of strongly related pairs, and there were no differences between groups in priming. This pattern of results is interpreted to support (a) a hypothesis of functional similarities between the memory deficits associated with adult ageing, alcohol intoxication, and sleep deprivation; (b) the notion that memory deficits in these subjects are more likely to occur in tasks which require effortful rather than automatic processes; and (c) the view that the memory deficits observed are due to inefficiencies at both encoding and retrieval.
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