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Ashadze-1 (12° 58′N 44° 51′W, 4080 m) on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge (MAR) is the deepest known active hydrothermal vent field. The first observations on this site were numerous clear and black smokers and surprisingly few known symbiotic species dominant in other vent areas on the MAR. The species most abundant at Ashadze-1 are those usually found at the periphery of hydrothermal communities: sea-anemones Maractis rimicarivora and chaetopterid polychaetes Phyllochaetopterus sp. nov. This study comprised site mapping and faunal sampling and Ashadze-1 was completely mapped by using the remote operated vehicle ‘Victor 6000’ and a new high resolution tool available for deep-sea research. A photo-mapping survey was carried out with a long range optical black and white camera. Digitization of substrata and sea-anemones visible on the images was performed by GIS. Spatial distribution of Ma. rimicarivora was distinguished by high densities of 32 ind.m−2 on the western side of the main smoker area. Submersible sampling operations allowed taxonomic identification within a 200 × 110 m area. Carbon, nitrogen and sulphur isotopic ratios were measured in four dominant species to identify their trophic position. The present paper gives the complete maps and describes the faunal community of the Ashadze-1 vent field. The results obtained led us to consider this site as an ecosystem in its declining stage. Finally we compare the similarities of this community to other hydrothermal communities on the northern MAR.
An experiment was conducted with 42 Montbéliard steers to determine if nutritionally induced interrupted growth could influence muscle characteristics of steers and hence meat quality. A restriction/refeeding path was designed in order to induce a discontinuous growth path. At 9 months of age, 21 steers were given a restricted amount of diet for 3 months and were then slaughtered (R steers; no. = 10; intake: 5·28 kg dry matter (DM) per day) or subjected to a 4-month ad libitum refeeding period (R/F steers; no. = 11; intake: 8·99 kg DM per day) with the same diet (11·03 to 11·12 MJ metabolizable energy (ME) per kg DM) prior to slaughter. An additional 21 control steers were offered the same diet but in amounts that allowed them to gain continuously between 9 and 12 months of age, and were then slaughtered (C steers; no. = 10; intake: 7·08 kg DM per day) or maintained on a continuous feeding protocol through to 16 months of age prior to slaughter (C/C steers; no. = 11; intake: 8·07 kg DM per day). M. semitendinosus (ST), m. longisssimus thoracis and m. triceps brachii (TB) were collected for biochemical and histochemical analyses. R steers had a lower average daily gain (ADG; P 0·001), a lower final weight (P 0·01) and a leaner carcass (P 0·01) than C steers. Upon refeeding, R/F steers had a higher ADG than C/C steers (P 0·05) and underwent compensatory growth resulting in compensation of body weight and composition at 16 months. In muscles, glycolytic lactate dehydrogenase activity was lower in R steers (P 0·01) and restored in R/F steers compared with control steers. Among oxidative enzymes, cytochrome-c oxidase activity was higher in the TB of R/F compared with C/C steers (P 0·001) indicating a muscle-specific metabolic adaptation to the feeding level. There was little effect of the nutritional treatment on muscle fibre size and type except for an increase in the frequency of hybrid fibres in R and R/F groups (P 0·05). Total and insoluble collagen content were affected by restriction (P 0·001) in a muscle-specific manner: insoluble collagen content was lower in ST, but total and insoluble collagen contents were higher in TB of R compared with C animals at 12 months of age. No differences were recorded in lipid contents nor in proteasome activities. The data suggest that an alternation of relatively mild nutritional restriction and ad libitumfeeding had only a small effect on muscle characteristics. However, muscles respond differentially to changes in feeding level.
Up to now, genetic selection in cattle has been directed in favour of muscle growth, which changes muscle characteristics, and hence meat quality. One key concern, that now needs examination, is to understand the relationships between muscle growth and muscle characteristics related to meat quality. To achieve such a goal, muscles of divergently selected animals were analysed by three complementary approaches: (i) determination of muscle biochemical characteristics, (ii) identification of differentially expressed genes using transcriptomic and proteomic tools, (iii) identification of Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNP) within candidate genes.
1-D computer simulations have been performed to study the influence of X-rays preheating on the compression of spherical laser-produced plasmas. The targets are glass microballoons filled with Neon at the initial pressure 10 bars. It is assumed that the only significant absorption process in the Neon is by inverse bremsstrahlung absorption. The results indicate that the radiative preheating energy has a nonnegligible effect on the compression, and a study of the Lawson criterion shows that this effect is more important for high-Z target shell materials and for thicker shells.
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