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We describe here efforts to create and study magnetized electron–positron pair plasmas, the existence of which in astrophysical environments is well-established. Laboratory incarnations of such systems are becoming ever more possible due to novel approaches and techniques in plasma, beam and laser physics. Traditional magnetized plasmas studied to date, both in nature and in the laboratory, exhibit a host of different wave types, many of which are generically unstable and evolve into turbulence or violent instabilities. This complexity and the instability of these waves stem to a large degree from the difference in mass between the positively and the negatively charged species: the ions and the electrons. The mass symmetry of pair plasmas, on the other hand, results in unique behaviour, a topic that has been intensively studied theoretically and numerically for decades, but experimental studies are still in the early stages of development. A levitated dipole device is now under construction to study magnetized low-energy, short-Debye-length electron–positron plasmas; this experiment, as well as a stellarator device that is in the planning stage, will be fuelled by a reactor-based positron source and make use of state-of-the-art positron cooling and storage techniques. Relativistic pair plasmas with very different parameters will be created using pair production resulting from intense laser–matter interactions and will be confined in a high-field mirror configuration. We highlight the differences between and similarities among these approaches, and discuss the unique physics insights that can be gained by these studies.
Pneumococcal serotype replacement is an important issue after the introduction of pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV) in children. After the introduction of 13-valent PCV, the incidence of invasive pneumococcal diseases (IPD) caused by Streptococcus pneumoniae serotype 12F (Sp12F) have increased in some countries; however, an outbreak of Sp12F has not reported in the post-13-valent PCV era. We experienced a local outbreak of Sp12F during March through May 2016 in Tsuruoka city, Japan after the introduction of 13-valent PCV in 2013. The IPD patients were two children and seven adults, three of whom died with a rapid disease progress. Although the clear transmission route was not determined, eight of the nine patients (89%) had close contact with children, which suggests that transmitted colonisation of Sp12F among children and adults might be the source of transmission. Continuous monitoring of IPDs, along with the determination of pneumococcal serotypes, is warranted in the post–13-valent PCV era. New IPD control strategies may be needed if this fatal outbreak continues to occur.
In the previous work, it is reported that the Spin-Seebeck effect (SSE), which refer to the generation of a spin current from a temperature gradient, can be enhanced by Fe interface treatment. Here, we investigated the Fe thickness (dFe) dependency of spin-Seebeck voltage (VSSE) and mixing conductance (gr) in Pt/Fe/Bi:YIG/SGGG system. As a result, magnitude of VSSE had a peak at dFe ≓ 1 ML (monolayer , ≓ 0.3 mm), and also increase of gr was saturated at this point. It suggests that VSSE increase with increasing gr when dFe is smaller than 1.0 ML. For the case in which dFe is larger than 1.0ML, however, VSSE decreases due to a spin current decay in Fe layer with a constant gr. These experimental results are consistent with previous theoretical works.
Shiga-toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) infections usually cause haemolytic uraemic syndrome (HUS) equally in male and female children. This study investigated the localization of globotriaosylceramide (Gb3) in human brain and kidney tissues removed from forensic autopsy cases in Japan. A fatal case was used as a positive control in an outbreak of diarrhoeal disease caused by STEC O157:H7 in a kindergarten in Urawa in 1990. Positive immunodetection of Gb3 was significantly more frequent in female than in male distal and collecting renal tubules. To correlate this finding with a clinical outcome, a retrospective analysis of the predictors of renal failure in the 162 patients of two outbreaks in Japan was performed: one in Tochigi in 2002 and the other in Kagawa Prefecture in 2005. This study concludes renal failure, including HUS, was significantly associated with female sex, and the odds ratio was 4·06 compared to male patients in the two outbreaks. From 2006 to 2009 in Japan, the risk factor of HUS associated with STEC infection was analysed. The number of males and females and the proportion of females who developed HUS were calculated by age and year from 2006 to 2009. In 2006, 2007 and 2009 in adults aged >20 years, adult women were significantly more at risk of developing HUS in Japan.
In 2013, an unusual increase of paratyphoid fever cases in travellers returning from Cambodia was reported in Japan. From December 2012 to September 2013, 18 cases of Salmonella Paratyphi A infection were identified. Microbiological analyses revealed that most isolates had the same clonal identity, although the epidemiological link between these cases remains unclear. It was inferred that the outbreak was caused by a common and persistent source in Cambodia that was likely to have continued during 2014. The information of surveillance and laboratory data from cases arising in travellers from countries with limited surveillance systems should be timely shared with the country of origin.
Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) is a well-known energy source for muscle contraction. In this study, to visualize localization of ATP, a luciferin-luciferase reaction (LLR) was performed in mouse skeletal muscle with an “in vivo cryotechnique” (IVCT). First, to confirm if ATP molecules could be trapped and detected after glutaraldehyde (GA) treatment, ATP was directly attached to glass slides with GA, and LLR was performed. The LLR was clearly detected as an intentional design of the ATP attachment. The intensity of the light unit by LLR was correlated with the concentration of the GA-treated ATP in vitro. Next, LLR was evaluated in mouse skeletal muscles with IVCT followed by freeze-substitution fixation (FS) in acetone-containing GA. In such tissue sections the histological structure was well maintained, and the intensity of LLR in areas between muscle fibers and connective tissues was different. Moreover, differences in LLR among muscle fibers were also detected. For the IVCT-FS tissue sections, diaminobenzidine (DAB) reactions were clearly detected in type I muscle fibers and erythrocytes in capillaries, which demonstrated flow shape. Thus, it became possible to perform microscopic evaluation of the numbers of ATP molecules in the mouse skeletal muscles with IVCT, which mostly reflect living states.
We show that the dispersion in the Schmidt-Kennicutt (SK) law in galaxies is affected significantly by the evolutionary stage of star forming molecular gas, using narrow band Paα imaging of Taffy I, an interacting pair of galaxies. Star forming regions in the system show very uniform ages except for the bridge region, and the SK law of regions at the same age show a exceptionally tight SK law.
We present a patient with mitochondrial hearing loss and a novel mitochondrial DNA transition, who underwent successful cochlear implantation.
An 11-year-old girl showed epilepsy and progressive hearing loss. Despite the use of hearing aids, she gradually lost her remaining hearing ability. Laboratory data revealed elevated lactate levels, indicating mitochondrial dysfunction. Magnetic resonance imaging showed diffuse, mild brain atrophy. Cochlear implantation was performed, and the patient's hearing ability was markedly improved. Whole mitochondrial DNA genome analysis revealed a novel heteroplasmic mitochondrial 625G>A transition in the transfer RNA gene for phenylalanine. This transition was not detected in blood DNA from the patient's mother and healthy controls. Mitochondrial respiratory chain activities in muscle were predominantly decreased in complex III.
This case indicates that cochlear implantation can be a valuable therapeutic option for patients with mitochondrial syndromic hearing loss.
In most of numerical simulations of spiral galaxy formation,
mass/spatial resolution is ~ 105-6M๏ and kpc or sub-kpc,
therefore inhomogeneous structure of the ISM in galaxies is not
resolved. This is the most serious defect in simulating star
formation and its feedback during galaxy formation/evolution. Here we
show an intrinsic structures of the ISM using 3-D high resolution
hydrodynamic simulations of galactic disks. We show that the PDFs in
globally stable, inhomogeneous ISM in galactic disks are well fitted
by a single log-normal function over a wide density range. The
dispersion of the log-normal PDF (LN-PDF) is larger for more gas-rich
systems. Using the LN-PDF, we give a generalized version of
Schmidt-Kennicutt law, i.e. SFR as a function of average gas density,
a critical local density for star formation, and star formation
efficiency. We also introduce our new project, “Project Milky Way”, in which we
aim to resolve properly the cold, dense ISM, as found in above
simulations, by ultra-high resolution during galaxy formation. We are
planning to construct a special cluster for simulating formation of
“Milky Way” using the next generation GRAPE.