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Chinchilla lanigera intensive breeding programmes are affected by an abnormal repetitive behaviour called ‘fur-chewing’, yet the aetiology is still unknown and little scientific work has been published on this condition. Recent studies have supported the idea that fur-chewing is a stress-related behaviour. In the present study, we used a questionnaire survey in order to: 1) describe general aspects on the epidemiology of fur-chewing in Argentinian farms, and 2) identify which management and/or environmental factors within the breeding facilities may be influencing the occurrence of fur-chewing. The survey consisted of 28 questions focused on farm characteristics, environmental variables and husbandry routines, and was distributed to Argentinian chinchilla farmers. All quantitative variables were tested in a multiple logistic regression model. The mean incidence of fur-chewing was 4.32 ± 0.37% (n = 107 farms). Variables negatively related to fur-chewing were the breeder experience in the activity, the total volume of the facility, and the number of wood shaving changes per week. Positive relationships were found for space index, number of rooms in the facility and presence of different rooms for fur production and reproduction. Other tendencies suggested that farms with the presence of external sound disturbance nearby had higher incidence levels. Also, we detected a tendency towards lower numbers of affected animals with an increment in the provision of dusting baths per week. Finally, results suggested a female prevalence in the development of the behaviour.
Gaia DR2 was released in April 2018 and contains a photometric catalogue of more than 1 billion sources. This release contains colour information in the form of integrated BP and RP photometry in addition to the latest G-band photometry. The level of uncertainty can be as good as 2 mmag with some residual systematics at the 10 mmag level. The addition of colour information greatly enhances the value of the photometric data for the scientific community. A high level overview of the photometric processing, with a focus on the improvements with respect to Gaia DR1, was given. The definition of the Gaia photometric system, a crucial part of the calibration of the photometry, was also explained. Finally, some of the photometric improvements expected for the next data release were described.
Although childhood adversity is a potent determinant of psychopathology, relatively little is known about how the characteristics of adversity exposure, including its developmental timing or duration, influence subsequent mental health outcomes. This study compared three models from life course theory (recency, accumulation, sensitive period) to determine which one(s) best explained this relationship.
Prospective data came from the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (n = 7476). Four adversities commonly linked to psychopathology (caregiver physical/emotional abuse; sexual/physical abuse; financial stress; parent legal problems) were measured repeatedly from birth to age 8. Using a statistical modeling approach grounded in least angle regression, we determined the theoretical model(s) explaining the most variability (r2) in psychopathology symptoms measured at age 8 using the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire and evaluated the magnitude of each association.
Recency was the best fitting theoretical model for the effect of physical/sexual abuse (girls r2 = 2.35%; boys r2 = 1.68%). Both recency (girls r2 = 1.55%) and accumulation (boys r2 = 1.71%) were the best fitting models for caregiver physical/emotional abuse. Sensitive period models were chosen alone (parent legal problems in boys r2 = 0.29%) and with accumulation (financial stress in girls r2 = 3.08%) more rarely. Substantial effect sizes were observed (standardized mean differences = 0.22–1.18).
Child psychopathology symptoms are primarily explained by recency and accumulation models. Evidence for sensitive periods did not emerge strongly in these data. These findings underscore the need to measure the characteristics of adversity, which can aid in understanding disease mechanisms and determining how best to reduce the consequences of exposure to adversity.
The importance of pork in the transmission of Salmonella spp. to humans has led to the development of control programmes worldwide. For this, knowledge on the epidemiology of the infection in the production system is fundamental to the efficacy of the regulations. Our objective was to determine the prevalence and spatial distribution of Salmonella-infected farms in the central region of Argentina, and to identify the predominant serotypes and epidemiological factors associated with an increased risk of infection. Salmonella was isolated from 22 of 52 sampled farms, for a farm prevalence of 42·3% (95% confidence interval 28·4–56·1). The most frequent serotypes isolated were S. Typhimurium and S. Derby, which have often been considered of public health concern in the region. Limited evidences of global and local clustering in the region under study were found, and the type of feed and presence of diarrhoeic pigs were significantly associated with having Salmonella shedders in the farm. This highlights the need to evaluate microbiological controls at the farm level, and demonstrates the usefulness of the spatial tools to identify areas of greatest risk when processing pork at slaughterhouse, which could contribute to increasing the food safety of pork products.
Recent advances in the knowledge of the evolutionary status of asymptotic giant branch (AGB) stars and of the nucleosynthesis processes occurring in them are discussed, and used to interpret abundance determinations for s-process elements, lithium and CNO isotopes in several types of AGB stars. We focus our attention mainly on carbon-rich AGB stars. By combining these different constraints we conclude that most carbon stars in the solar neighborhood are of low mass (M≤3 M⊙), their abundances being a consequence of the operation of thermal pulses and the third dredge-up. However, the observed abundances in carbon stars of the R and J types cannot be explained by this standard scenario. These stars may not be on the AGB, but possibly in the core-He burning phases; their envelopes may have been polluted with nuclear ashes of the core-He flash, followed by CNO re-processing enhancing 13C. Observational evidence suggesting the operation of non-standard mixing mechanisms during the AGB phase is also discussed.
We present the status of the project IRAIT (the Italian Robotic Antarctic Infrared Telescope) that will be hosted at Dome C in the Italo-French Concordia station. We review the main scientific motivations of the effort, and describe the characteristics of the telescope, which has been completed and is now under test at the Coloti-Montone site operated by the University of Perugia. Then we describe the design of the mid-IR camera that is under construction, showing some examples of the applications on the basis of the twin instrument TIRCAM II, now operating at the Italian Infrared Telescope TIRGO.
PILOT (the Pathfinder for an International Large Optical Telescope) is a proposed 2.5-m optical/infrared telescope to be located at Dome C on the Antarctic plateau. Conditions at Dome C are known to be exceptional for astronomy. The seeing (above ∼30 m height), coherence time, and isoplanatic angle are all twice as good as at typical mid-latitude sites, while the water-vapour column, and the atmosphere and telescope thermal emission are all an order of magnitude better. These conditions enable a unique scientific capability for PILOT, which is addressed in this series of papers. The current paper presents an overview of the optical and instrumentation suite for PILOT and its expected performance, a summary of the key science goals and observational approach for the facility, a discussion of the synergies between the science goals for PILOT and other telescopes, and a discussion of the future of Antarctic astronomy. Paper II and Paper III present details of the science projects divided, respectively, between the distant Universe (i.e. studies of first light, and the assembly and evolution of structure) and the nearby Universe (i.e. studies of Local Group galaxies, the Milky Way, and the Solar System).
We present a new determination of the solar nitrogen abundance making use of 3D hydrodynamical modelling of the solar photosphere, which is more physically motivated than traditional static 1D models. We selected suitable atomic spectral lines, relying on equivalent width measurements already existing in the literature. For atmospheric modelling we used the co5bold 3D radiation hydrodynamics code. We investigated the influence of both deviations from local thermodynamic equilibrium (non-LTE effects) and photospheric inhomogeneities (granulation effects) on the resulting abundance. We also compared several atlases of solar flux and centre-disc intensity presently available. As a result of our analysis, the photospheric solar nitrogen abundance is A(N) = 7.86 ± 0.12.
We discuss possible stellar origins of short-lived radioactive nuclei with meanlife τ ≤ 100 Myr, which were shown to be alive in the Early Solar System (ESS). We first review current ideas on the production of nuclides having 10 ≤ τ ≤ 100 Myr, which presumably derive from the continuous interplay of galactic astration, nucleosynthesis from massive supernovae and free decay in the interstellar medium. The abundance of the shorter lived 53Mn might be explained by this same scenario. Then we consider the nuclei 107Pd, 26Al, 41Ca and 60Fe, whose early solar system abundances are too high to have originated in this way. Present evidence favours a stellar origin, particularly for 107Pd, 26Al and 60Fe, rather than an in situ production by energetic solar particles. The idea of an encounter (rather close in time and space) between the forming Sun and a dying star is therefore discussed: this star may or may not have also triggered the solar formation. Recent nucleosynthesis calculations for the yields of the relevant short-lived isotopes and of their stable reference nuclei are discussed. Massive stars evolving to type II supernovae (either leaving a neutron star or a black hole as a remnant) seem incapable of explaining the four most critical ESS radioactivities in their observed abundance ratios. An asymptotic giant branch (AGB) star seems to be a viable source, especially if of relatively low initial mass (M ≤ 3 M⊙) and with low neutron exposure: this model can provide a solution for 26Al, 41Ca and 107Pd, with important contributions to 60Fe, which are inside the present uncertainty range of the 60Fe early solar system abundance. Such a model requires that 26Al is produced substantially on the AGB by cool bottom processing. The remaining inventory of short-lived species in the solar nebula would then be attributed to the continuous galactic processing, with the exception of 10Be, which must reflect production by later proton bombardment at a low level during early solar history.
We present computations of nucleosynthesis in red giants and Asymptotic Giant Branch (AGB) stars of Population I experiencing extended mixing. The assumed physical cause for mass transport is the buoyancy of magnetized structures, according to recent suggestions. The peculiar property of such a mechanism is to allow for both fast and slow mixing phenomena, as required for reproducing the spread in Li abundances displayed by red giants and as discussed in an accompanying paper. We explore here the effects of this kind of mass transport on CNO and intermediate-mass nuclei and compare the results with the available evidence from evolved red giants and from the isotopic composition of presolar grains of AGB origin. It is found that a good general accord exists between predictions and measurements; in this framework we also show which type of observational data best constrains the various parameters. We conclude that magnetic buoyancy, allowing for mixing at rather different speeds, can be an interesting scenario to explore for explaining together the abundances of CNO nuclei and of Li.
We present an analysis of Li abundances in low mass stars (LMS) during the Red Giant Branch (RGB) and Asymptotic Giant Branch (AGB) stages, based on a new determination of their luminosities and evolutionary status. By applying recently suggested models for extra-mixing, induced by magnetic buoyancy, we show that both Li-rich and Li-poor stars can be accounted for. The simplest scenario implies the development of fast instabilities on the RGB, where Li is produced. When the fields increase in strength, buoyancy slows down and Li is destroyed. 3He is consumed, at variable rates. The process continues on the AGB, where however moderate mass circulation rates have little effect on Li due to the short time available. O-rich and C-rich stars show different histories of Li production/destruction, possibly indicative of different masses. More complex transport schemes are allowed by magnetic buoyancy, with larger effects on Li, but most normal LMS seem to show only the range of Li variation discussed here.
We briefly outline the plans for scientific activities with the International Robotic Antarctic Infrared Telescope (IRAIT), recently mounted at Dome C. We summarize a few fields where infrared observations with the IRAIT telescope can be effective and
we focus on a key project for the Commissioning Phase, namely the determination of the luminosity and of evolutionary parameters for evolved Long-Period Variables (LPVs).
The status of the AMICA project is reported. Final tests are currently running
at Teramo Observatory before moving the instrument to Antarctica. AMICA is a
camera equipped with two array detectors to perform astronomical imaging in the
2–28 μm band. It will be mounted at the IRAIT focal plane. Its very special
feature is the antarctic operability. AMICA subsystems have been tested at
typical antarctic conditions, in order to adopt technological solutions that
ensure the correct operation of AMICA even on the antarctic plateau. Moreover,
since human operations are not possible during the antarctic “winter", AMICA has
been designed to operate in a completely automatic mode. AMICA is essentially
aimed to demonstrate the potential of Antarctica for Infrared Astronomy and
should therefore produce significant data, both for astronomy and site-testing.
In addition, the experience gained in its technological development will be
useful for building future astronomical instruments for extreme environment
This report provides the recommendations of ARENA Working Group 1 concerning the development of and objectives for a wide-field, optical/infrared, 2.5 m class telescope for Antarctica. It discusses the key science drivers for such a telescope, the performance and capabilities it should have, and the logistics and infrastructure issues relevant to its construction and operation.
We present preliminary results of the measurements of sky transparency conducted at Dome C during the winter 2008. Using MOLIERE modeling, we estimate a low precipitable water vapour content above Concordia station, which is very promising for future submillimetre wave observations on the Antarctic Plateau.
Spectrophotometric data at near- and mid-infrared (IR) wavelengths
are crucial to understand the main evolutionary properties of the
Asymptotic Giant Branch (AGB) phase. They can be used to reveal
relations between spectral features at near-IR wavelengths and
parameters obtained with mid-IR photometric observations (i.e.
bolometric luminosity). We are performing such an analysis on a
sample of Galactic AGB stars: spectrophotometric data from the
IRTS satellite are studied and compared with observations in the
mid-IR range obtained by other instruments. In this contribution
we present preliminary results for a sub-sample of C-rich sources.
We show which spectral features in the 1–4 μm region are most
enhanced in the C-rich stars and explore how these features relate
with the bolometric stellar luminosity. Finally, we comment on how
an Antarctic IR telescope at Dome C will help this research by
observations of AGB sources in the Galaxy and in the Magellanic
Near-infrared spectro-photometry, at a spectral resolution of ~100, allows
to characterize a great variety of stellar sources, from late-type giants
to emission line stars. Various components of the interstellar medium,
including circumstellar environments and Planetary Nebulae,
can also be traced.
We propose AIFU, a fiber-fed near-infrared low-resolution spectrograph.
With a 1'×1' field of view and a 2'' sampling, AIFU will be well
suited to survey spectroscopically stellar populations in large areas of
the Galaxy and of the Magellanic Clouds, as e.g. star-forming regions,
as well as to image extended sources, like circumstellar shells around
nearby evolved stars, PDRs, simultaneously in many different emission lines.
The International Robotic Antarctic Infrared Telescope (IRAIT)
will be the first European infrared telescope to operate on
the Antarctic Plateau: IRAIT is scheduled to arrive at Dome C
during the 2007–2008 Antarctic campaign. The main IRAIT Focal
Plane Instrument is AMICA (Antarctic Multiband Infrared CAmera)
an instrument designed to observe in the Near- and Mid-infrared
(2–28 μm). Here we give a brief description of the
telescope and discuss which kind of science could be performed
from Dome C.