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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.
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.
Physiological analyses of the behaviour of several cercarial species which actively find and invade their hosts have revealed very complex sequences of behaviour patterns and responses to very different stimuli from the environment and the host. A result of these physiological studies is that the behaviour patterns of each of the species investigated are surprisingly individual. The behavioural patterns of host-finding of those species analysed in some detail reveal profound adaptations to maximize transmission success. This can be demonstrated for movement patterns during swimming, for responses to environmental conditions such as gravity, light and temperature, for responses to stimuli emanating from the host such as shadows, water turbulence and chemical compounds and especially for the responses after contact with the host. The behaviour patterns can be interpreted as adaptations to: (1) dispersal by leaving the habitat of the snail intermediate host and distribution within the area; (2) long survival by energy saving swimming behaviour, by avoiding responses to inappropriate stimuli, by selecting favourable microhabitats and probably by avoiding predation; (3) finding and invading particular host types by selecting microhabitats frequented by the hosts and responding to sequences of specific stimuli emanating from the hosts.
Data on the depth distribution of the major atmospheric gases and the abundance of gaseous 12CO2, 13CO2, and 14CO2 in the subsoil unsaturated zone have been obtained from several sites in the western Great Plains of the United States. Sample profiles range from land surface to depths of 50m. Although each site must be considered on an individual basis, several general statements can be made regarding the profiles. 1) Diffusion of these gaseous molecules through the unsaturated zone is an important transport mechanism. 2) As predicted by diffusion theory, depth profiles of the various isotopic species of CO2 differ substantially from one another, depending on individual sources and sinks such as root respiration and oxidation of organic carbon at depth. 3) In general, post-bomb (> 100% modern) 14C activities are not observed in the deep unsaturated zone, in contrast to diffusion model predictions. 4) In spite of generally decreasing 14C activities with depth, absolute partial pressures of 14CO2 in the subsoil unsaturated zone are 1–2 orders of magnitude higher than the partial pressure of 14CO2 in the atmosphere.
Soil gas samples were obtained from the unsaturated zone at eight sites in the Great Plains. Three of these sites were sampled extensively for gas composition and carbon isotopes. Sampling equipment consisted of a nest of gas probes vertically spaced by roughly 3m at most sites, generally approaching the water table. Water wells, 10cm in diameter, were screened in the topmost layer groundwater. Inverted cattle tanks were used to collect CO2 samples from the soil surface. The major gas components were analyzed with emphasis on CO2, δ 13C, and 14C measurements. The same components were studied in groundwater samples. Higher than atmospheric CO2 concentrations were found in all soil samples. Root respiration and oxidation of organic matter were sources for the additional CO2. When lignite was present in the unsaturated zone, gaseous oxygen reacted almost completely, and CO2 levels rose to 19%. Near the surface, annual cycles in total CO2, δ 13C, and 14C were observed. 14C activities were close to present post-bomb levels at the surface and generally declined with depth. At some sites, oxidation of lignite caused decline of 14C levels to 1 or 2% of their surface value at 8m depth. Without lignite, the 14C activity remained above 50% at all depths. Concentrations of total carbon and its isotopes in ground water remained very stable throughout the study. This implies that geochemical processes in the aquifer vary on time scales longer than the seasonal effects observed in the near-surface unsaturated zone.
During the ORFEUS-SPAS (Orbiting Retrievable Far and Extreme Ultraviolet Spectrometer on the Shuttle Pallet Satellite) mission STS-51, flown in September 1993, we observed the central star of the planetary nebula NGC 6543 in the far ultraviolet (90 nm to 115 nm) wavelength region using the University of California, Berkeley spectrometer with a spectral resolution of 0.03 nm.
Measurements of the main far-infrared cooling lines from photodissociation regions in planetary nebulae were obtained with NASA's Kuiper Airborne Observatory, using a moderate-resolution far-infrared cooled grating spectrometer (Erickson et al. 1985). We surveyed about 20 nebulae in the [O I] 63 μm line, and detected it in most of the observed objects. We found that its strength correlates well with the total far-infrared power, with an average ratio of about 0.2%, as predicted by models of photodissociation regions (e.g. Tielens & Hollenbach 1985; Wolfire et al. 1990). Strong 63 μm emission is absent only for objects in which the ionization of the gas is just beginning and for a few evolved objects where the ionized nebula is probably matter-bounded.
ORFEUS (Orbiting and Retrievable Far and Extreme Ultraviolet Spectrometer) is a 1 m normal incidence telescope for spectroscopic investigations of cosmic sources in the far and extreme ultraviolet spectral range. The instrument will be integrated into the freeflyer platform ASTRO-SPAS. ORFEUS-SPAS is scheduled with STS ENDEAVOUR in September 1992. We describe the telescope with its two spectrometers and their capabilities i.e. spectral range, resolution and overall sensitivity. The main classes of objects to be observed with the instrument are discussed and two examples of simulated spectra for the white dwarf HZ43 and an O9-star in the LMC are shown.
Far UV high resolution spectra of 3 LMC and SMC stars were obtained with the Echelle spectrograph during the second ORFEUS mission in Dec. 1996. We present the first results from observations of the LMC star HDE 269546. We find definitely components of very hot gas identified as OVI and SVI absorption in the galactic halo of the Milky Way and in the LMC. Additionally, more than 30 ions of the most abundant elements in different stages of ionization can be identified in both our galaxy and the LMC. For the first time we can identify a significant absorption component of molecular hydrogen in the ORFEUS II Echelle spectrum with a redshift of 200 km s−1, doubtlessly to be attributed to the LMC.
During the second flight of the ORFEUS-SPAS satellite (Nov./Dec. 96) high resolution (λ/∆λ = 10,000) Echelle-spectra of BD+28° 4211 in the wavelength regime 912–1400 Å have been taken. Deuterium can be clearly identified in the ORFEUSII Echelle-spectra of this star. For the first time it was possible to take spectra of faint, not redshifted objects in the far ultraviolet with a sufficient spectral resolution to study the deuterium column density in the whole spectral range of the Lyman-series down to the Lyman-limit. We obtained a value of log(ND) = 14.7 (±0.3) towards BD+28° 4211. The hydrogen column density has been determined using ORFEUS Echelle- and IUE-spectra of Ly-α (log(NH) = 19.8 (±0.2)). Thus a value of 8 × 10−6 can be obtained for the D/H-ratio on the line-of-sight towards BD+28° 4211.
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.
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.