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We have shown that molecular imprinting (MI) technology can be used to produce sensitive, robust, cost-effective biosensing systems with a real-time electrochemical readout that can be utilized for point of care diagnostics. Real time detection of biomarkers is essential when rapid, critical decisions need to be made, such as in situations where public health is threatened. Our biosensor has high sensitivity compared to standard methods like ELISA, and results are obtained within minutes, using inexpensive, accessible potentiometric readout technology. These biosensors utilize surface molecular imprinting of a self-assembling monolayer of hydroxy-terminated alkanethiol chains which form a crystalline ‘lock-and-key’ structure around a target analyte, allowing the sensors to detect and differentiate between bio-macromolecules of similar size and shape with high selectivity and sensitivity. The sensors are extremely versatile and able to detect a diverse range of molecules of varied chemical composition and structure. To fully exploit the sensors’ advantages, especially in remote, economically disadvantaged areas, it is important to quantify their durability and reusability. Biosensor chips were created to test the viability of hemoglobin detection and to evaluate the potential for sensor reusability when washed after detection testing. The successful readsorption of hemoglobin even after washing, accompanied by cyclic voltammetry data indicating the preservation of the SAM, indicate that these biosensors are reusable, significantly augmenting the device’s value. Potential applications include the analysis of complex chemical and biological processes such as stem cell differentiation and on-the-spot detection of diseases such as Zika.
To determine the efficacy of 2 types of antimicrobial privacy curtains in clinical settings and the costs involved in replacing standard curtains with antimicrobial curtains.
A prospective, open-labeled, multicenter study with a follow-up duration of 6 months.
This study included 12 rooms of patients with multidrug-resistant organisms (MDROs) (668 patient bed days) and 10 cubicles (8,839 patient bed days) in the medical, surgical, neurosurgical, orthopedics, and rehabilitation units of 10 hospitals.
Culture samples were collected from curtain surfaces twice a week for 2 weeks, followed by weekly intervals.
With a median hanging time of 173 days, antimicrobial curtain B (quaternary ammonium chlorides [QAC] plus polyorganosiloxane) was highly effective in reducing the bioburden (colony-forming units/100 cm2, 1 vs 57; P < .001) compared with the standard curtain. The percentages of MDRO contamination were also significantly lower on antimicrobial curtain B than the standard curtain: methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, 0.5% vs 24% (P < .001); carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter spp, 0.2% vs 22.1% (P < .001); multidrug-resistant Acinetobacter spp, 0% vs 13.2% (P < .001). Notably, the median time to first contamination by MDROs was 27.6 times longer for antimicrobial curtain B than for the standard curtain (138 days vs 5 days; P = .001).
Antimicrobial curtain B (QAC plus polyorganosiloxane) but not antimicrobial curtain A (built-in silver) effectively reduced the microbial burden and MDRO contamination compared with the standard curtain, even after extended use in an active clinical setting. The antimicrobial curtain provided an opportunity to avert indirect costs related to curtain changing and laundering in addition to improving patient safety.
Multidrug-resistant organisms (MDROs) are increasingly reported in residential care homes for the elderly (RCHEs). We assessed whether implementation of directly observed hand hygiene (DOHH) by hand hygiene ambassadors can reduce environmental contamination with MDROs.
From July to August 2017, a cluster-randomized controlled study was conducted at 10 RCHEs (5 intervention versus 5 nonintervention controls), where DOHH was performed at two-hourly intervals during daytime, before meals and medication rounds by a one trained nurse in each intervention RCHE. Environmental contamination by MRDOs, such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter species (CRA), and extended-spectrum β-lactamse (ESBL)–producing Enterobacteriaceae, was evaluated using specimens collected from communal areas at baseline, then twice weekly. The volume of alcohol-based hand rub (ABHR) consumed per resident per week was measured.
The overall environmental contamination of communal areas was culture-positive for MRSA in 33 of 100 specimens (33%), CRA in 26 of 100 specimens (26%), and ESBL-producing Enterobacteriaceae in 3 of 100 specimens (3%) in intervention and nonintervention RCHEs at baseline. Serial monitoring of environmental specimens revealed a significant reduction in MRSA (79 of 600 [13.2%] vs 197 of 600 [32.8%]; P<.001) and CRA (56 of 600 [9.3%] vs 94 of 600 [15.7%]; P=.001) contamination in the intervention arm compared with the nonintervention arm during the study period. The volume of ABHR consumed per resident per week was 3 times higher in the intervention arm compared with the baseline (59.3±12.9 mL vs 19.7±12.6 mL; P<.001) and was significantly higher than the nonintervention arm (59.3±12.9 mL vs 23.3±17.2 mL; P=.006).
The direct observation of hand hygiene of residents could reduce environmental contamination by MDROs in RCHEs.
We describe a new species of the aetosaur Coahomasuchus, C. chathamensis, based on an incomplete, but largely articulated, anterior portion of a skeleton recovered from a quarry in the Upper Triassic Pekin Formation of Chatham County, North Carolina. This is only the second documented occurrence of Coahomasuchus, with the other being the holotype of C. kahleorum Heckert and Lucas, 1999 from the Upper Triassic Colorado City Formation of Texas. Although much of the specimen is the same size as the holotype of C. kahleorum, the dorsal paramedian osteoderms of the North Carolina taxon are considerably (~1.3×) wider than homologous counterparts in C. kahleorum, and the ventral thoracic osteoderms are also rectangular (~1.5× wider than long), rather than square, presumably to accommodate the wider body. This is a rare instance where two articulated specimens of closely related aetosaur species are available for direct comparison of homologous osteoderms. Isolated osteoderms with similar ornamentation from the same locality indicate that C. chathamensis may have been one of the earliest aetosaurs to attain the broad osteoderm proportions (width:length >3.5:1) otherwise known solely from later branching, spinose taxa such as Typothorax. The co-occurrence of Lucasuchus and Coahomasuchus in both North Carolina and Texas supports past correlations indicating an Otischalkian (Carnian) age for these strata and demonstrates that plesiomorphic, non-spinose aetosaur genera were not necessarily endemic to a single basin in North America.
The borderline between the periods commonly termed "medieval" and "Renaissance", or "medieval" and "early modern", is one of the most hotly, energetically and productively contested faultlines in literary history studies. The essays presented in this volume both build upon and respond to the work of Professor Helen Cooper, a scholar who has long been committed to exploring the complex connectionsand interactions between medieval and Renaissance literature. The contributors re-examine a range of ideas, authors and genres addressed in her work, including pastoral, chivalric romance, early English drama, and the writings of Chaucer, Langland, Spenser and Shakespeare. As a whole, the volume aims to stimulate active debates on the ways in which Renaissance writers used, adapted, and remembered aspects of the medieval.
Andrew King is Lecturer in Medieval and Renaissance Literature at University College, Cork; Matthew Woodcock is Senior Lecturer in Medieval and Renaissance Literature at the University of East Anglia.
Contributors: Joyce Boro, Aisling Byrne, Nandini Das, Mary C. Flannery, Alexandra Gillespie, Andrew King, Megan G. Leitch, R.W. Maslen, Jason Powell,Helen Vincent, James Wade, Matthew Woodcock
An inline metal organic chemical vapor deposition system was used to deposit tin sulfide at temperatures >500 °C. Tetramethyltin was used as the tin source and diethyldisulfide as the sulfur source. An overhead injector configuration was used delivering both precursors directly over the substrate. The tin and sulfur precursors were premixed before injection to improve chemical reaction in the gas phase. Growth temperatures 500 – 540 °C were employed producing films with approximate 1:1 stoichiometry of Sn and S detected by energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy. X-ray diffraction showed there to be mixed phases with Sn2S3 present with SnS.