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Previous research into the effectiveness of healthy eating programmes has shown increases in healthful eating behaviour in primary schools; however, data collection methods have not been sufficiently sensitive to detect micronutrient changes. The present study extends the literature by measuring individual children's intake of macro- and micronutrients at lunchtime, before and after a programme targeting children's consumption of fruit and vegetables, to identify evidence-based health benefits of programme participation. Baseline data were collected over 4 d at lunchtime in two primary schools. The Food Dudes programme was then implemented in the intervention school. Follow-up data were collected over 4 d in each school 2 months after baseline. We employed a validated and sensitive photographic method to estimate individual children's (N 112) consumption of fruit, vegetables, and their intake of calories, macro- and selected micronutrients. Significant changes were observed in the intervention school but not in the control school: Children's consumption of fruit, vegetables, vitamin C and E intake increased, while their total energy consumption, fat, saturated fat, and sodium intake decreased. The present results show that the Food Dudes programme produced a positive nutritional change, with implications for its application as a healthy eating and obesity prevention intervention. These optimistic conclusions should be tested by further research to establish the longevity of the positive effects presented here.
The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has resulted in shortages of personal protective equipment (PPE), underscoring the urgent need for simple, efficient, and inexpensive methods to decontaminate masks and respirators exposed to severe acute respiratory coronavirus virus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). We hypothesized that methylene blue (MB) photochemical treatment, which has various clinical applications, could decontaminate PPE contaminated with coronavirus.
The 2 arms of the study included (1) PPE inoculation with coronaviruses followed by MB with light (MBL) decontamination treatment and (2) PPE treatment with MBL for 5 cycles of decontamination to determine maintenance of PPE performance.
MBL treatment was used to inactivate coronaviruses on 3 N95 filtering facepiece respirator (FFR) and 2 medical mask models. We inoculated FFR and medical mask materials with 3 coronaviruses, including SARS-CoV-2, and we treated them with 10 µM MB and exposed them to 50,000 lux of white light or 12,500 lux of red light for 30 minutes. In parallel, integrity was assessed after 5 cycles of decontamination using multiple US and international test methods, and the process was compared with the FDA-authorized vaporized hydrogen peroxide plus ozone (VHP+O3) decontamination method.
Overall, MBL robustly and consistently inactivated all 3 coronaviruses with 99.8% to >99.9% virus inactivation across all FFRs and medical masks tested. FFR and medical mask integrity was maintained after 5 cycles of MBL treatment, whereas 1 FFR model failed after 5 cycles of VHP+O3.
MBL treatment decontaminated respirators and masks by inactivating 3 tested coronaviruses without compromising integrity through 5 cycles of decontamination. MBL decontamination is effective, is low cost, and does not require specialized equipment, making it applicable in low- to high-resource settings.
Quantitative plant biology is an interdisciplinary field that builds on a long history of biomathematics and biophysics. Today, thanks to high spatiotemporal resolution tools and computational modelling, it sets a new standard in plant science. Acquired data, whether molecular, geometric or mechanical, are quantified, statistically assessed and integrated at multiple scales and across fields. They feed testable predictions that, in turn, guide further experimental tests. Quantitative features such as variability, noise, robustness, delays or feedback loops are included to account for the inner dynamics of plants and their interactions with the environment. Here, we present the main features of this ongoing revolution, through new questions around signalling networks, tissue topology, shape plasticity, biomechanics, bioenergetics, ecology and engineering. In the end, quantitative plant biology allows us to question and better understand our interactions with plants. In turn, this field opens the door to transdisciplinary projects with the society, notably through citizen science.
Host–microbial co-metabolism products are being increasingly recognised to play important roles in physiological processes. However, studies undertaking a comprehensive approach to consider host–microbial metabolic relationships remain scarce. Metabolomic analysis yielding detailed information regarding metabolites found in a given biological compartment holds promise for such an approach. This work aimed to explore the associations between host plasma metabolomic signatures and gut microbiota composition in healthy adults of the Milieu Intérieur study. For 846 subjects, gut microbiota composition was profiled through sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene in stools. Metabolomic signatures were generated through proton NMR analysis of plasma. The associations between metabolomic variables and α- and β-diversity indexes and relative taxa abundances were tested using multi-adjusted partial Spearman correlations, permutational ANOVA and multivariate associations with linear models, respectively. A multiple testing correction was applied (Benjamini–Hochberg, 10 % false discovery rate). Microbial richness was negatively associated with lipid-related signals and positively associated with amino acids, choline, creatinine, glucose and citrate (−0·133 ≤ Spearman’s ρ ≤ 0·126). Specific associations between metabolomic signals and abundances of taxa were detected (twenty-five at the genus level and nineteen at the species level): notably, numerous associations were observed for creatinine (positively associated with eleven species and negatively associated with Faecalibacterium prausnitzii). This large-scale population-based study highlights metabolites associated with gut microbial features and provides new insights into the understanding of complex host–gut microbiota metabolic relationships. In particular, our results support the implication of a ‘gut–kidney axis’. More studies providing a detailed exploration of these complex interactions and their implications for host health are needed.
Temporal and spatial patterns in flowering phenology were assessed for eight tropical African tree species. Specifically, the frequency and seasonality of flowering at seven sites in central Africa were determined using field data, graphical analysis and circular statistics. Additionally, spatial variation in the timing of flowering across species range was investigated using herbarium data, analysing the relative influence of latitude, longitude and timing of the dry season with a Bayesian circular generalized linear model. Annual flowering was found for 20 out of the 25 populations studied. For 21 populations located at the north of the climatic hinge flowering was occurring during the dry season. The analysis of herbarium collections revealed a significant shift in the timing of flowering with latitude for E. suaveolens, and with the timing of the dry season for M. excelsa (and to a lesser extent L. alata), with the coexistence of two flowering peaks near the equator where the distribution of monthly rainfall is bimodal. For the other species, none of latitude, longitude or timing of the dry season had an effect on the timing of flowering. Our study highlights the need to identify the drivers of the flowering phenology of economically important African tree species.
Taking up the Bleulerian view of a clinical description based on a pathogenic model, we propose a rating scale for the assessment of communication disorders in schizophrenic patients. The scale consists of clinical items that could be the direct expression of the three hypotheses of cognitive dysfunction which have been postulated to explain communication dysfunction in these patients. We assessed the frequency of the 16 items in the scale in a total of 80 subjects (43 schizophrenic subjects, ten manic subjects, 17 depressive subjects and ten normal control subjects). The results of this study showed that this item schedule was specific to schizophrenic patients and, in particular, could statistically significantly discriminate schizophrenic patients from psychotic patients with affective disorder. The methodological qualities of the scale were explored and proved accurate, except for the reliability which is too low for some items and the item-to-total correlation which is too low for one item of the scale.
The Gaia satellite recently released parallax measurements for nearly 400,000 white dwarf stars, allowing for precise measurements of their physical parameters. By combining these parallaxes with Pan-STARRS and CFIS-u photometry, we measured the effective temperatures and surface gravities for all white dwarfs within 100 pc and identified a sample of ZZ Ceti white dwarf candidates within the instability strip. We report the results of a photometric follow-up, currently under way, aimed at identifying new ZZ Ceti stars among this sample using the PESTO camera attached to the 1.6-m telescope at the Mont Mégantic Observatory. Our goal is to verify that ZZ Ceti stars occupy a region in the logg-Teff plane where no nonvariable stars are found, supporting the idea that ZZ Ceti pulsators represent a phase through which all hydrogen-line (DA) white dwarfs must evolve.
Online self-reported 24-h dietary recall systems promise increased feasibility of dietary assessment. Comparison against interviewer-led recalls established their convergent validity; however, reliability and criterion-validity information is lacking. The validity of energy intakes (EI) reported using Intake24, an online 24-h recall system, was assessed against concurrent measurement of total energy expenditure (TEE) using doubly labelled water in ninety-eight UK adults (40–65 years). Accuracy and precision of EI were assessed using correlation and Bland–Altman analysis. Test–retest reliability of energy and nutrient intakes was assessed using data from three further UK studies where participants (11–88 years) completed Intake24 at least four times; reliability was assessed using intra-class correlations (ICC). Compared with TEE, participants under-reported EI by 25 % (95 % limits of agreement −73 % to +68 %) in the first recall, 22 % (−61 % to +41 %) for average of first two, and 25 % (−60 % to +28 %) for first three recalls. Correlations between EI and TEE were 0·31 (first), 0·47 (first two) and 0·39 (first three recalls), respectively. ICC for a single recall was 0·35 for EI and ranged from 0·31 for Fe to 0·43 for non-milk extrinsic sugars (NMES). Considering pairs of recalls (first two v. third and fourth recalls), ICC was 0·52 for EI and ranged from 0·37 for fat to 0·63 for NMES. EI reported with Intake24 was moderately correlated with objectively measured TEE and underestimated on average to the same extent as seen with interviewer-led 24-h recalls and estimated weight food diaries. Online 24-h recall systems may offer low-cost, low-burden alternatives for collecting dietary information.
The ALMA-ALPINE [CII] survey (A2C2S) aims at characterizing the properties of normal star-forming galaxies (SFGs) observed in the [CII]-158μm line in the period of rapid mass assembly at redshifts 4 < z < 6. Here we present the survey and the selection of 118 galaxies observed with ALMA, selected from large samples of galaxies with spectroscopic redshifts derived from UV-rest frame. The observed properties derived from the ALMA data are presented and discussed in terms of the overall detection rate in [CII] and far-IR continuum. The sample is representative of the SFG population at these redshifts. The overall detection rate is 61% down to a flux limit of 0.07 mJy. From a visual inspection of the [CII] data cubes together with the large wealth of ancillary data we find a surprisingly wide range of galaxy types, including 32.4% mergers, 25.7% extended and dispersion dominated, 13.5% rotating discs, and 16.2% compact, the remaining being too faint to be classified. ALPINE sets a reference sample for the gas distribution in normal star-forming galaxies at a key epoch in galaxy assembly, ideally suited for studies with future facilities like JWST and ELTs.
Introduction: Low acuity patients have been controversially tagged as a source of emergency department (ED) misuse. Authorities for many Canadian health regions have set up policies so these patients preferably present to walk-in clinics (WIC). We compared the cost and quality of the care given to low acuity patients in an academic ED and a WIC of Québec City during fiscal year 2015-16. Methods: We conducted an ambidirectional (prospective and retrospective) cohort study using a time-driven activity-based costing method. This method uses duration of care processes (e.g., triage) to allocate to patient care all direct costs (e.g., personnel, consumables), overheads (e.g., building maintenance) and physician charges. We included consecutive adult patients, ambulatory at all time and discharged from the ED or WIC with a diagnosis of upper respiratory tract infection (URTI), urinary tract infection (UTI) or low back pain. Mean cost [95%CI] per patient per condition was compared between settings after risk-adjustment for age, sex, vital signs, number of regular medications and co-morbidities using generalized log-gamma regression models. Proportions [95%CI] of antibiotic prescription and chest X-Ray use in URTI, compliance with provincial guidelines on use of antibiotics in UTI, and column X-Ray use in low back pain were compared between settings using a Pearson Chi-Square test. Results: A total of 409 patients were included. ED and WIC groups were similar in terms of age, sex and vital signs on presentation, but ED patients had a greater burden of comorbidities. Adjusted mean cost (2016 CAN$) of care was significantly higher in the ED than in the WIC (p < 0.0001) for URTI (78.42[64.85-94.82] vs. 59.43[50.43-70.06]), UTI (78.88[69.53-89.48] vs. 53.29[43.68-65.03]), and low back pain (87.97[68.30-113.32] vs. 61.71[47.90-79.51]). For URTI, antibiotics were more frequently prescribed in the WIC (44.1%[34.3-54.3] vs. 5.8%[1.2-16.0]; p < 0.0001) and chest X-Rays, more frequently used in the ED (26.9%[15.6-41.0] vs. 13.7%[7.7-22.0]; p = 0.05). No significant differences were observed in the compliance with guidelines on use of antibiotics in UTI and in the use of column X-Ray in low back pain. Conclusion: Total cost of care for low acuity patients is lower in walk-in clinics than in EDs. However, our results suggest that quality-of-care issues should be considered in determining the best alternate setting for treating ambulatory emergency patients.
Astrophysics Telescope for Large Area Spectroscopy Probe is a concept for a National Aeronautics and Space Administration probe-class space mission that will achieve ground-breaking science in the fields of galaxy evolution, cosmology, Milky Way, and the Solar System. It is the follow-up space mission to Wide Field Infrared Survey Telescope (WFIRST), boosting its scientific return by obtaining deep 1–4 μm slit spectroscopy for ∼70% of all galaxies imaged by the ∼2 000 deg2 WFIRST High Latitude Survey at z > 0.5. Astrophysics Telescope for Large Area Spectroscopy will measure accurate and precise redshifts for ∼200 M galaxies out to z < 7, and deliver spectra that enable a wide range of diagnostic studies of the physical properties of galaxies over most of cosmic history. Astrophysics Telescope for Large Area Spectroscopy Probe and WFIRST together will produce a 3D map of the Universe over 2 000 deg2, the definitive data sets for studying galaxy evolution, probing dark matter, dark energy and modifications of General Relativity, and quantifying the 3D structure and stellar content of the Milky Way. Astrophysics Telescope for Large Area Spectroscopy Probe science spans four broad categories: (1) Revolutionising galaxy evolution studies by tracing the relation between galaxies and dark matter from galaxy groups to cosmic voids and filaments, from the epoch of reionisation through the peak era of galaxy assembly; (2) Opening a new window into the dark Universe by weighing the dark matter filaments using 3D weak lensing with spectroscopic redshifts, and obtaining definitive measurements of dark energy and modification of General Relativity using galaxy clustering; (3) Probing the Milky Way’s dust-enshrouded regions, reaching the far side of our Galaxy; and (4) Exploring the formation history of the outer Solar System by characterising Kuiper Belt Objects. Astrophysics Telescope for Large Area Spectroscopy Probe is a 1.5 m telescope with a field of view of 0.4 deg2, and uses digital micro-mirror devices as slit selectors. It has a spectroscopic resolution of R = 1 000, and a wavelength range of 1–4 μm. The lack of slit spectroscopy from space over a wide field of view is the obvious gap in current and planned future space missions; Astrophysics Telescope for Large Area Spectroscopy fills this big gap with an unprecedented spectroscopic capability based on digital micro-mirror devices (with an estimated spectroscopic multiplex factor greater than 5 000). Astrophysics Telescope for Large Area Spectroscopy is designed to fit within the National Aeronautics and Space Administration probe-class space mission cost envelope; it has a single instrument, a telescope aperture that allows for a lighter launch vehicle, and mature technology (we have identified a path for digital micro-mirror devices to reach Technology Readiness Level 6 within 2 yr). Astrophysics Telescope for Large Area Spectroscopy Probe will lead to transformative science over the entire range of astrophysics: from galaxy evolution to the dark Universe, from Solar System objects to the dusty regions of the Milky Way.
The present study tested the validity of a digital image-capture measure of food consumption suitable for use in busy school cafeterias.
Lunches were photographed pre- and post-consumption, and food items were weighed pre- and post-consumption for comparison.
A small research team recorded children’s lunchtime consumption in one primary and one secondary school over seven working days.
A primary-school sample of 121 children from North Wales and a secondary-school sample of 124 children from the West Midlands, UK, were utilised. Nineteen children were excluded because of incomplete data, leaving a final sample of 239 participants.
Results indicated that (i) consumption estimates based on images were accurate, yielding only small differences between the weight- and image-based judgements (median bias=0·15–1·64 g, equating to 0·45–3·42 % of consumed weight) and (ii) good levels of inter-rater agreement were achieved, ranging from moderate to near perfect (Cohen’s κ=0·535–0·819). This confirmed that consumption estimates derived from digital images were accurate and could be used in lieu of objective weighed measures.
Our protocol minimised disruption to daily lunchtime routine, kept the attrition low, and enabled better agreement between measures and raters than was the case in the existing literature. Accurate measurements are a necessary tool for all those engaged in nutrition research, intervention evaluation, prevention and public health work. We conclude that our simple and practical method of assessment could be used with children across a range of settings, ages and lunch types.
The pore structure of vapour deposited ASW is poorly understood, despite its importance to fundamental processes such as grain chemistry, cooling of star forming regions, and planet formation. We studied structural changes of vapour deposited D2O on intra-molecular to 30 nm length scales at temperatures ranging from 18 to 180 K and observed enhanced mobility from 100 to 150 K. An Arrhenius type model describes the loss of surface area and porosity with a common set of kinetic parameters. The low activation energy (428 K) is commensurate with van der Waals forces between nm-scale substructures in the ice. Our findings imply that water porosity will always change with time, even at low temperatures.
Impact craters are the dominant landform on Mercury and range from the largest basins to the smallest young craters. Peak-ring basins are especially prevalent on Mercury, although basins of all forms are far undersaturated, probably the result of the extensive volcanic emplacement of intercrater plains and younger smooth plains between about 4.1 and 3.5 Ga. This chapter describes the geology of the two largest well-preserved basins, Caloris and Rembrandt, and the three smaller Raditladi, Rachmaninoff, and Mozart basins. We describe analyses of crater size–frequency distributions and relate them to populations of asteroid impactors (Late Heavy Bombardment in early epochs and the near-Earth asteroid population observable today during most of Mercury’s history), to secondary cratering, and to exogenic and endogenic processes that degrade and erase craters. Secondary cratering is more important on Mercury than on other solar system bodies and shaped much of the surface on kilometer and smaller scales, compromising our ability to use craters for relative and absolute age-dating of smaller geological units. Failure to find “vulcanoids” and satellites of Mercury suggests that such bodies played a negligible role in cratering Mercury. We describe an absolute cratering chronology for Mercury’s geological evolution as well as its uncertainties.
During the 2014-2015 Ebola outbreak in West Africa, the lack of infection prevention and control (IPC) measures in health care facilities amplified human-to-human transmission and contributed to the magnitude of this humanitarian disaster.
In the summer of 2014, the Geneva University Hospitals (HUG; Geneva, Switzerland) conducted an IPC assessment and developed a project based on the local needs and their expertise with the support of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation and the Humanitarian Aid Unit (SDC/HA; Bern, Switzerland). The project consisted of building local capacity in the production of alcohol-based hand-rub solution (ABHRS) based on the World Health Organization (WHO; Geneva, Switzerland) formula in non-Ebola health facilities at the peak of the outbreak in Liberia (Fall 2014) and during recovery in Guinea (September 2015) to promote safer care. Twenty-one pharmacists in Liberia and 22 in Guinea were trained and one years’ worth of laboratory equipment, chemical products, containers for personal use, and bioethanol were delivered to 10 hospitals per country with more than 8,000 100 ml bottles of solution produced at the end of the project.
Hand hygiene using hand-rub solution is a critical component of safer care, especially in health care settings lacking runnable water. Throughout the Ebola outbreak, it was a timely moment to promote hand-rub solution and to reinforce IPC measures in non-Ebola health facilities. During the project implementation, a substantial challenge was the unavailability of bioethanol in Liberia and Guinea. In the long run, sustainability of the production can become an issue as it depends heavily on the local government’s financial and political commitment, the capacity to create an on-going demand for hand-rub solution in health facilities, the local purchase and replacement of the materials and chemical products, as well as the availability of continuous local partners’ support.
The project demonstrated that it was feasible to build local capacity in ABHRS production during an emergency and in limited-resource settings when materials and training are provided. Future programs in similar contexts should identify and address the factors of sustainability during the implementation phase and provide regular, long-term technical support.
Jacquerioz BauschFA, HellerO, BengalyL, Matthey-KhouityB, BonnabryP, TouréY, KervillainGJ, BahEI, ChappuisF, HagonO. Building Local Capacity in Hand-Rub Solution Production during the 2014-2016 Ebola Outbreak Disaster: The Case of Liberia and Guinea.. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2018;33(6):660–667.
Subglacial hydrology plays a key role in many glaciological processes, including ice dynamics via the modulation of basal sliding. Owing to the lack of an overarching theory, however, a variety of model approximations exist to represent the subglacial drainage system. The Subglacial Hydrology Model Intercomparison Project (SHMIP) provides a set of synthetic experiments to compare existing and future models. We present the results from 13 participating models with a focus on effective pressure and discharge. For many applications (e.g. steady states and annual variations, low input scenarios) a simple model, such as an inefficient-system-only model, a flowline or lumped model, or a porous-layer model provides results comparable to those of more complex models. However, when studying short term (e.g. diurnal) variations of the water pressure, the use of a two-dimensional model incorporating physical representations of both efficient and inefficient drainage systems yields results that are significantly different from those of simpler models and should be preferentially applied. The results also emphasise the role of water storage in the response of water pressure to transient recharge. Finally, we find that the localisation of moulins has a limited impact except in regions of sparse moulin density.
The Chaudière River region in the Appalachian Mountains of eastern Canada is approximately 700 km north of the southernmost Pleistocene glacial deposits in New York and New Jersey. Detailed compositional analyses of glacial and non-glacial sediments from stratigraphic exposures and more than 40 boreholes drilled to bedrock provide a compositionally constrained record of glacial events, which include deposits of one Marine Oxygen Isotope Stage (MIS) 6 and two post-MIS 5 glaciations. The glacial and associated proglacial deposits rest on compositionally distinctive, preglacial saprolite that is preserved in deeper valleys. These observations constrain interpretations of the glacial/Pleistocene history of the eastern United States and Canada. The fact that there is no unequivocal evidence of pre-MIS 6 till in the Chaudière River region, while there are well-documented pre-MIS 6 glacial deposits south of there and in the American Midwest, also has major climatic implications. The Laurentide Ice Sheet and its ancestors must have been more robust in the west in the early Pleistocene and in the east most recently.
Gona in the Afar region of Ethiopia has yielded the earliest Oldowan stone tools in the world. Artefacts from the East Gona (EG) 10 site date back 2.6 million years. Analysis of the lithic assemblage from EG 10 reveals the earliest-known evidence for refitting and conjoining stone artefacts. This new information supplements data from other Oldowan sites in East Africa, and provides an important insight into the technological capacities and evolutionary development of hominins during this period.