To send content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about sending content to .
To send content items to your Kindle, first ensure email@example.com
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
Oxytocin is a neuropeptide known to influence social and cognitive processing across several mammalian species. There currently exists a mixed and controversial pattern of evidence that oxytocin pathway genes confer individual differences in social cognition and personality in humans. Inconsistencies across studies may in part be explained by the presence of intermediary, epigenetic, variables that exist between genotype and phenotype. This study was designed to investigate the association between epigenetic modification of the Oxytocin Receptor Gene (OXTR), via DNA methylation, and Big-5 personality traits. Genetic data were collected via saliva samples and analyzed to quantify DNA methylation within the promoter region of OXTR. The results indicate that Openness to Experience is associated with OXTR DNA methylation, while controlling for the remaining Big-5 personality dimensions (Neuroticism, Extraversion, Agreeableness, and Conscientiousness) and sex and age. This finding provides additional support for models associating oxytocin with individual differences in personality and identity in humans.
Camera-based systems in dairy cattle were intensively studied over the last years. Different from this study, single camera systems with a limited range of applications were presented, mostly using 2D cameras. This study presents current steps in the development of a camera system comprising multiple 3D cameras (six Microsoft Kinect cameras) for monitoring purposes in dairy cows. An early prototype was constructed, and alpha versions of software for recording, synchronizing, sorting and segmenting images and transforming the 3D data in a joint coordinate system have already been implemented. This study introduced the application of two-dimensional wavelet transforms as method for object recognition and surface analyses. The method was explained in detail, and four differently shaped wavelets were tested with respect to their reconstruction error concerning Kinect recorded depth maps from different camera positions. The images’ high frequency parts reconstructed from wavelet decompositions using the haar and the biorthogonal 1.5 wavelet were statistically analyzed with regard to the effects of image fore- or background and of cows’ or persons’ surface. Furthermore, binary classifiers based on the local high frequencies have been implemented to decide whether a pixel belongs to the image foreground and if it was located on a cow or a person. Classifiers distinguishing between image regions showed high (⩾0.8) values of Area Under reciever operation characteristic Curve (AUC). The classifications due to species showed maximal AUC values of 0.69.
Recent excavations at the site of Soro Mik’aya Patjxa in the south-central Andes have revealed the earliest securely dated cultural features in the Lake Titicaca Basin. Radiocarbon assays show that the site was occupied across the Middle to Late Archaic period transition between 8000 and 6700 cal BP. The rich material assemblage makes it possible to identify behavioural patterns among these last hunter-gatherers of the Titicaca Basin, which anticipate later developments in the trajectory to socioeconomic complexity. Mobile hunter-gatherers appear to have occupied the site repeatedly for more than a millennium. Evidence for intensive subsistence practices and interpersonal violence foreshadow the emergence of incipient sedentism, food production and land tenure in subsequent periods.
We conducted a time-series analysis to evaluate the impact of the ASP over a 6.25-year period (July 1, 2008–September 30, 2014) while controlling for trends during a 3-year preintervention period (July 1, 2005–June 30, 2008). The primary outcome measures were total antibacterial and antipseudomonal use in days of therapy (DOT) per 1,000 patient-days (PD). Secondary outcomes included antimicrobial costs and resistance, hospital-onset Clostridium difficile infection, and other patient-centered measures.
During the preintervention period, total antibacterial and antipseudomonal use were declining (−9.2 and −5.5 DOT/1,000 PD per quarter, respectively). During the stewardship period, both continued to decline, although at lower rates (−3.7 and −2.2 DOT/1,000 PD, respectively), resulting in a slope change of 5.5 DOT/1,000 PD per quarter for total antibacterial use (P=.10) and 3.3 DOT/1,000 PD per quarter for antipseudomonal use (P=.01). Antibiotic expenditures declined markedly during the stewardship period (−$295.42/1,000 PD per quarter, P=.002). There were variable changes in antimicrobial resistance and few apparent changes in C. difficile infection and other patient-centered outcomes.
In a hospital with low baseline antibiotic use, implementation of an ASP was associated with sustained reductions in total antibacterial and antipseudomonal use and declining antibiotic expenditures. Common ASP outcome measures have limitations.
Using in situ data from 2011 and 2013, we evaluate the ability of CryoSat-2 (CS-2) to retrieve sea-ice freeboard over fast ice in McMurdo Sound. This provides the first systematic validation of CS-2 in the coastal Antarctic and offers insight into the assumptions currently used to process CS-2 data. European Space Agency Level 2 (ESAL2) data are compared with results of a Waveform Fitting (WfF) procedure and a Threshold-First-Maximum-Retracker-Algorithm employed at 40% (TFMRA40). A supervised freeboard retrieval procedure is used to reduce errors associated with sea surface height identification and radar velocity in snow. We find ESAL2 freeboards located between the ice and snow freeboard rather than the frequently assumed snow/ice interface. WfF is within 0.04 m of the ice freeboard but is influenced by variable snow conditions causing increased radar backscatter from the air/snow interface. Given such snow conditions and additional uncertainties in sea surface height identification, a positive bias of 0.14 m away from the ice freeboard is observed. TFMRA40 freeboards are within 0.03 m of the snow freeboard. The separation of freeboard estimates is primarily driven by the different assumptions of each retracker, although waveform alteration by variations in snow properties and surface roughness is evident. Techniques are amended where necessary, and automatic freeboard retrieval procedures for ESAL2, WfF and TFMRA40 are presented. CS-2 detects annual fast-ice freeboard trends using all three automatic procedures that are in line with known sea-ice growth rates in the region.
Analyzing historical trajectories of social interactions at varying scales can lead to complementary interpretations of relationships among archaeological settlements. We use social network analysis combined with geographic information systems at three spatial scales over time in the western U.S. Southwest to show how the same social processes affected network dynamics at each scale. The period we address, A.D. 1200–1450, was characterized by migration and demographic upheaval. The tumultuous late thirteenth-century interval was followed by population coalescence and the development of widespread religious movements in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. In the southern Southwest these processes resulted in a highly connected network that drew in members of different settlements within and between different valleys that had previously been distinct. In the northern Southwest networks were initially highly connected followed by a more fragmented social landscape. We examine how different network textures emerged at each scale through 50-year snapshots. The results demonstrate the usefulness of applying a multiscalar approach to complex historical trajectories and the potential for social network analysis as applied to archaeological data.
Feed is a major component of variable costs associated with dairy systems and is therefore an important consideration for breeding objectives. As a result, measures of feed efficiency are becoming popular traits for genetic analyses. Already, several countries account for feed efficiency in their breeding objectives by approximating the amount of energy required for milk production, maintenance, etc. However, variation in actual feed intake is currently not captured in dairy selection objectives, although this could be possible by evaluating traits such as residual feed intake (RFI), defined as the difference between actual and predicted feed (or energy) intake. As feed intake is expensive to accurately measure on large numbers of cows, phenotypes derived from it are obvious candidates for genomic selection provided that: (1) the trait is heritable; (2) the reliability of genomic predictions are acceptable to those using the breeding values; and (3) if breeding values are estimated for heifers, rather than cows then the heifer and cow traits need to be correlated. The accuracy of genomic prediction of dry matter intake (DMI) and RFI has been estimated to be around 0.4 in beef and dairy cattle studies. There are opportunities to increase the accuracy of prediction, for example, pooling data from three research herds (in Australia and Europe) has been shown to increase the accuracy of genomic prediction of DMI from 0.33 within country to 0.35 using a three-country reference population. Before including RFI as a selection objective, genetic correlations with other traits need to be estimated. Weak unfavourable genetic correlations between RFI and fertility have been published. This could be because RFI is mathematically similar to the calculation of energy balance and failure to account for mobilisation of body reserves correctly may result in selection for a trait that is similar to selecting for reduced (or negative) energy balance. So, if RFI is to become a selection objective, then including it in an overall multi-trait selection index where the breeding objective is net profit is sensible, as this would allow genetic correlations with other traits to be properly accounted for. If genetic parameters are accurately estimated then RFI is a logical breeding objective. If there is uncertainty in these, then DMI may be preferable.
Data from 113 Dutch organic farms were analysed to determine the effect of cross-breeding on production and functional traits. In total, data on 33 788 lactations between January 2003 and February 2009 from 15 015 cows were available. Holstein–Friesian pure-bred cows produced most kg of milk in 305 days, but with the lowest percentages of fat and protein of all pure-bred cows in the data set. Cross-breeding Holstein dairy cows with other breeds (Brown Swiss, Dutch Friesian, Groningen White Headed, Jersey, Meuse Rhine Yssel, Montbéliarde or Fleckvieh) decreased milk production, but improved fertility and udder health in most cross-bred animals. In most breeds, heterosis had a significant effect (P < 0.05) on milk (kg in 305 days), fat and protein-corrected milk production (kg in 305 days) and calving interval (CI) in the favourable direction (i.e. more milk, shorter CI), but unfavourably for somatic cell count (higher cell count). Recombination was unfavourable for the milk production traits, but favourable for the functional traits (fertility and udder health). Farm characteristics, like soil type or housing system, affected the regression coefficients on breed components significantly. The effect of the Holstein breed on milk yield was twice as large in cubicle housing as in other housing systems. Jerseys had a negative effect on fertility only on farms on sandy soils. Hence, breed effects differ across farming systems in the organic farming and farmers can use such information to dovetail their farming system with the type of cow they use.
The life history of Oplostomus haroldi (Witte), a recently reported pest of honeybee colonies in East Africa, was studied for the first time under laboratory conditions. Adult O. haroldi collected from beehives in the coastal part of Kenya were reared on a mixture of moist sterilized soil and cow dung. At 25 ± 2 °C, 50 ± 5% relative humidity and a 10 h light-14 h dark photoperiod, the laid eggs took 11.9 ± 1.3 days to hatch into a curved pear-shaped scarabaeiform larva with a well-developed head and thoracic legs. The first, second and third larval instars lasted 14.6 ± 2.6, 17.5 ± 2.4 and 34.6 ± 2.4 days, respectively. The pupal stage, which was marked by formation of a mud cocoon, lasted 31.1 ± 6.7 days with the adults surviving for 2–6 months under laboratory conditions, suggesting that the beetle is multivoltine. A detailed taxonomic description of the external morphology of the third instar larva is provided.
Non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPI) such as facemasks and intensified hand hygiene may be effective in preventing influenza infections in households. It may be equally important that household members, especially children, can learn to use, maintain and tolerate these measures. We monitored adherence and tolerability of these NPI within a cluster-randomized trial in households with influenza index patients. We recruited 147 participants in 41 households, 39 (95%) out of 41 index patients were children (aged <14 years). In households assigned to wear facemasks, their use peaked on day 4 after symptom onset of the index patient at 73% and at 65% for children and adults, respectively. Mean daily frequency of hand disinfection in households assigned to intensified hand hygiene measures peaked at 7·7 (day 6) for children and at 10·1 (day 5) for adults. The majority of participants reported no problems with mask wearing. Data suggest that usage of NPI can be taught and that measures are well tolerated by adults and even sick children alike.
Patients exhibiting considerable blood loss are prone to develop dilutional coagulopathy following volume supply. In such patients, in addition to transfusing stored blood components, cell saver systems are used to minimize allogeneic transfusion. Since red cell transfusion might influence the haemostatic system by further dilution, we investigated the effects of re-transfusion of salvaged washed red blood cells on the haemostatic process in an animal model of controlled haemorrhage using rotational thrombelastometry (ROTEM®; Pentapharm Co., Munich, Germany).
Anaesthetized pigs (n = 20) developed coagulopathy following haemorrhagic shock (withdrawal of 66% of estimated blood volume) and volume resuscitation with 6% hydroxyethyl starch 130/0.4. The shed blood was processed in a Cellsaver device (CATS ®; Fresenius AG, Bad Homburg, Germany), and the resulting salvaged red blood cells were re-transfused. ROTEM assays were performed at baseline, after blood loss, after volume resuscitation and following re-transfusion of salvaged red blood cells.
As compared with baseline, blood loss and subsequent volume resuscitation resulted in significantly increased median values of clotting time (CT: 47.0, 5 .3 and 103.5 s), and clot formation time (CFT: 36.0, 40.0 and 186.0 s), whigggle maximum clot firmness decreased (MCF: 72.0, 68.5 and 39.5 mm). After re-transfusion of salvaged red blood cells (805 ± 175 mL) all these parameters improved (CT: 80.5 s; P = 0.05, CFT: 144.0 s; P = 0.0008, MCF: 42.0 mm; P = 0.0019) although baseline values were not reached.
In the case of extreme isovolaemic haemodilution, increasing the circulating red cell mass by re-transfusing salvaged red blood cells did not worsen the findings of dilutional coagulopathy but interestingly, at least partially, improves the clot formation process.
Insects are by far the most diverse group of multicellular organisms on our planet. Of about 1,625,000 described species of prokaryotes, protoctists, fungi, plants and animals, more than 1 million is represented by arthropods, of which insects constitute the largest group with about 854,000 described species. The estimations of the number of still undescribed species, especially in the vanishing tropical rainforests, are ranging from 2 million to 80 million species! The most species-rich groups within insects are the holometabolous orders Coleoptera (beetles), Hymenoptera (ants, wasps and bees), Diptera (mosquitoes and flies) and Lepidoptera (moths and butterflies). Among the hemimetabolous orders, which lack a pupal stage in their ontogenetic development, the Hemiptera (aphids, scale insects, cicadas and bugs) are the largest group, while all other insect orders have much fewer species.
Even though relatively small animals, the extremely large number of individuals makes insects a very significant part of the total terrestrial biomass in many biotopes. For example, in tropical rainforests, the ants and termites have a higher total biomass than all the vertebrates combined.
Insects are not only diverse in terms of species number and number of individuals, but also in their astonishing anatomical and ecological variability. Insects populate nearly every available habitat on the planet, except for the open seas and the frozen polar regions.
Various mechanisms that enable and improve transmission success of myxozoan actinospore stages towards fish hosts are described, based upon a combination of experimental data and functional analysis of morphological characters. For this purpose, laboratory-reared actinospores of Myxobolus cerebralis, Myxobolus parviformis, Henneguya nuesslini and Myxobolus pseudodispar were employed to exemplarily investigate aspects of host attachment and invasion. The process of polar filament discharge of M. cerebralis actinospores was analysed, showing that full discharge occurs in less than 10 msec. Additionally, a mechanism that rapidly contracts the discharged filament after discharge is described for the first time. Its purpose is most likely to bring the actinospore apex rapidly into intimate contact with the surface of the host. Unlike M. cerebralis, M. parviformis actinospores did not discharge polar filaments after mechanical and chemical stimulation, suggesting a different mode of triggering. For H. nuesslini actinospores, experimental results indicated that polar filament discharge is independent of external calcium-ion concentration but is influenced by osmolality. After attachment of an actinospore and prior to penetration into the host, an ensheathed unit (‘endospore’), containing the sporoplasm, was emitted from the valves in a manner which varied from species to species. Experimentally induced sporoplasm emission was time-dependent and was found to be independent of polar filament discharge in H. nuesslini. Remarkably, it could be concluded that the sporoplasm is able to recognize host-stimuli while still within the intact spore. An updated summary of the sequential course of events during host recognition and invasion by actinospores is given.