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Mineralization of microbial biomass is a common phenomenon in geothermal habitats, but knowledge of the structure of the minerals formed in these environments is limited. A combination of spectroscopic, microscopic, and stable isotopic methods, as well as the chemical analysis of spring water, were employed in the present study to characterize calcium carbonate minerals deposited in filamentous cyanobacterial mats in different locations of La Duke hot spring, a circumneutral thermal feature near the north entrance of Yellowstone National Park, Montana, USA. Calcite was the primary crystalline mineral phase associated with biofilm-containing deposits closest to the source of the spring and the suspended microbial biomass in a pool further from the source. The carbonate minerals at all sites occurred as aggregated granules, ~2 μm in diameter, in close association with the microbial biomass. Only in the deposits closest to the source were the granules organized as laminated structures interspersed with microbial biomass. The calcium carbonate grains contained two distinct regions: a dense monolithic calcite core and a porous dendritic periphery containing organic matter (OM). Electron energy loss spectroscopy (EELS) indicated that the voids were infilled with OM and carbonates. The EELS technique was employed to distinguish the source of carbon in the organic matter and carbonate mixture. The studies of carbon isotope compositions of the calcium carbonates and the saturation indices for calcite in the spring waters suggest that processes (abiotic vs. biotic) controlling the carbonate formation may vary among the sampling sites.
Cancer is a life-changing experience, and side effects from treatment can make it difficult for survivors to return to their pre-cancer “normal life.” We explored the “new normal” and barriers to achieving it among lung cancer survivors who underwent surgery.
Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 32 recurrence-free non–small cell lung cancer survivors. We asked survivors how life had changed; how they defined the “new normal”; barriers that prevent them from achieving a “normal” life; and unmet needs or support for normalcy. Thematic analysis was performed.
Defining “new normal” subjectively depends on an individual’s expectation of recovery: (1) being able to do what they want without pain or discomfort; (2) being able to do activities they could accomplish before their surgery; and (3) being able to work, earn money, and support their family. We found that (1) persistent symptoms, (2) fear of cancer recurrence, (3) high expectations in recovery, and (4) psychosocial stress and guilty feelings were barriers to achieving a “new normal.” The needs and support for normalcy were information on expected trajectories, postoperative management, and support from family and society.
Significance of results
Survivors defined the “new normal” differently, depending on their expectations for recovery. Informing survivors about the “new normal” so they could expect possible changes and set realistic goals for their life after cancer. Health professionals need to communicate with survivors about expectations for “normality” from the beginning of treatment, and it should be included in comprehensive survivorship care.
Nosocomial transmission of COVID-19 among immunocompromised hosts can have a serious impact on COVID-19 severity, underlying disease progression and SARS-CoV-2 transmission to other patients and healthcare workers within hospitals. We experienced a nosocomial outbreak of COVID-19 in the setting of a daycare unit for paediatric and young adult cancer patients. Between 9 and 18 November 2020, 473 individuals (181 patients, 247 caregivers/siblings and 45 staff members) were exposed to the index case, who was a nursing staff. Among them, three patients and four caregivers were infected. Two 5-year-old cancer patients with COVID-19 were not severely ill, but a 25-year-old cancer patient showed prolonged shedding of SARS-CoV-2 RNA for at least 12 weeks, which probably infected his mother at home approximately 7–8 weeks after the initial diagnosis. Except for this case, no secondary transmission was observed from the confirmed cases in either the hospital or the community. To conclude, in the day care setting of immunocompromised children and young adults, the rate of in-hospital transmission of SARS-CoV-2 was 1.6% when applying the stringent policy of infection prevention and control, including universal mask application and rapid and extensive contact investigation. Severely immunocompromised children/young adults with COVID-19 would have to be carefully managed after the mandatory isolation period while keeping the possibility of prolonged shedding of live virus in mind.
The cycling endurance of phase-change memory is one of the last hurdles to overcome to enable its adoption in the larger market for persistent memory products. Phase-change memory cycling endurance failures, whether they are stuck-SET (caused by elemental segregation) or stuck-RESET (caused by void formation), are caused by atomic migration. Various driving forces responsible for the atomic migration have been identified, such as hole-wind force, electrostatic force, and crystallization-induced segregation. We introduce several strategies to improve cycling endurance based on an understanding of driving forces and interactions among them. Utilizing some of these endurance-improving techniques, record-high phase-change memory cycling endurance at around 1012 cycles has been recently reported using a confined phase-change memory cell with a metallic liner.
We investigated the pressure dependence of the inductive coupled plasma (ICP) oxidation on the electrical characteristics of the thin oxide films. Activation energies and electron temperatures with different pressures were estimated. To demonstrate the pressure effect on the plasma oxide quality, simple N type metal-oxide-semiconductor (NMOS) transistors were fabricated and investigated in a few electrical properties. At higher pressure than 200mTorr, plasma oxide has a slightly higher on-current and a lower interfacial trap density. The on-current gain seems to be related to the field mobility increase and the lower defective interface to the electron temperature during oxidation.
Decision making in an emotionally conflicting situation is important in social life. We aimed to address the similarity and disparity of neural correlates involved in processing ambivalent stimuli in patients with schizophrenia and patients with depression. Behavioral task-related hemodynamic responses were measured using [15O]H2O positron emission tomography (PET) in 12 patients with schizophrenia and 12 patients with depression. The task was a modified word-stem completion task, which was designed to evoke ambivalence in forced and non-forced choice conditions. The prefrontal cortex and the cerebellum were found to show increased activity in the healthy control group. In the schizophrenia group, activity in these two regions was negligible. In the depression group, the pattern of activity was altered and a functional compensatory recruitment of the inferior parietal regions was suggested. The prefrontal cortex seems to be associated with the cognitive control to resolve the conflict toward the ambivalent stimuli, whereas the cerebellum reflects the sustained working memory to search for compromise alternatives. The deficit of cerebellar activation in the schizophrenia group might underlie the inability to search and consider compromising responses for conflict resolution. (JINS, 2009, 15, 990–1001.)
Incomplete reprogramming of the donor cell nucleus after nuclear transfer (NT) probably leads to the abnormal expression of developmentally important genes. This may be responsible for the low efficiency of cloned animal production. Insulin-like growth factor 2 (IGF2) and IGF2 receptor (IGF2R) are imprinted genes that play important roles in preimplantation development. To obtain an insight into abnormal gene expression after nuclear transfer, we assessed the transcription patterns of IGF2-IGF2R in single in vitro fertilised and cloned embryos by reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). IGF2R expression did not differ significantly but IGF2 was more highly expressed in cloned embryos than in IVF embryos (p < 0.05). This was confirmed by a quantitative RT-PCR method. Thus, incomplete reprogramming may induce abnormal transcription of IGF2 in cloned embryos.
The highly strained interfacial structure and reaction of Co on Si(111) in the initial growth stage was studied by in-situ surface x-ray scattering. Co was deposited on Si(111) – (7×7) reconstruction by electron beam evaporation in ultra high vacuum. Our study reveals that the interfacial layer, formed by the reaction of Co with Si in the initial growth stage at room temperature, is a silicide layer with stoichiometry of Co2Si. The interfacial silicide layer is a commensurate phase of pseudohexagonal Co2Si, which shows a significant local atomic displacements imposed by Si substrate. The intensity oscillations at the anti-Bragg position with Co coverage show that a layer-by-layer consumption of silicon substrate occurs for the first 15 monolayers (ML) of Co deposited.
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