Sample records for lombardy northern italy

  1. Conservation agriculture practices to enhance soil organic in Lombardy plain (Northern Italy)

    Perego, Alessia; Giussani, Andrea; Corsi, Stefano; Tosini, Andrea; Acutis, Marco


    It has been demonstrated that conservation agriculture (CA) determines a long-term increase in soil organic carbon (SOC) stock in cropland. The present study aimed to estimate the amount of SOC stored in soil of Lombardy plain (Northern Italy) following the change from tillage agriculture (TA) to CA by using crop ARMOSA crop over 23 years (1989-2011). The territorial analysis was performed at agrarian region scale (AR) after identification of the representative crops rotation and soil types. The land use information were data available at cadastral scale and referred to 5 years (from 2007 to 2011). The meteorological data (i.e. maximum and minimum temperature, precipitation) were measured at 14 monitoring stations. Solar radiation was estimated using the equation of the Bristow and Campbell model (1994). A spatial interpolation method was used to extend the meteorological data throughout the entire plain of the region by employing Thiessen polygon method; the meteorological data of the polygon were assigned to each AR. ARMOSA was parameterized to simulate the two tillage systems. For TA and CA scenario the depth of tillage was limited to 35 and 10 cm, respectively; crop residual incorporation was not simulated under CA. In TA scenario, we used the parameters calibrated and validated by Perego et al.(2013) on a wide dataset collected at six monitoring sites in Lombardy plain. In CA, the rate of C decomposition of humified organic C was assumed to be smaller by 30% in no-tillage than in TA (Oorts et al., 2007). The model results showed a significant improve of SOC (pmaize monoculture with or without cover crop. References: Oorts K., Garnier P., Findeling A., Mary B., Richard G., Nicolardot B., (2007). Modeling soil carbon and nitrogen dynamics in no-till and conventional tillage using PASTIS model. Soil Sci. Soc. Am. J., 7, pp. 336-346 Perego A., Giussani A., Sanna M., Fumagalli M., Carozzi M., Alfieri L., Brenna S., Acutis M., 2013. The ARMOSA simulation crop model

  2. Surveillance of acute flaccid paralysis (AFP) in Lombardy, Northern Italy, from 1997 to 2011 in the context of the national AFP surveillance system.

    Pellegrinelli, Laura; Primache, Valeria; Fiore, Lucia; Amato, Concetta; Fiore, Stefano; Bubba, Laura; Pariani, Elena; Amendola, Antonella; Barbi, Maria; Binda, Sandro


    An Acute Flaccid Paralysis (AFP) surveillance system was set up in Lombardy (Northern Italy) in 1997 in the framework of the national AFP surveillance system, as part of the polio eradication initiative by the World Health Organization (WHO). This surveillance system can now be used to detect Poliovirus (PV) reintroductions from endemic countries. This study aimed at describing the results of the AFP surveillance in Lombardy, from 1997 to 2011.   Overall, 131 AFP cases in Lombardy were reported with a mean annual incidence rate of 0.7/100 000 children AFP cases was typical with peaks in November, in January, and in March. The major clinical diagnoses associated with AFP were Guillain-Barré Syndrome (GBS, 40%) and encephalomyelitis/myelitis (13%). According to the virological results, no poliomyelitis cases were caused by wild PV infections, but two Vaccine-Associated Paralytic Paralysis (VAPP) cases were reported in 1997 when the Sabin oral polio vaccine (OPV) was still being administered in Italy. Since a surveillance system is deemed sensitive if at least one case of AFP per 100,000 children <15 years of age is detected each year, our surveillance system needs some improvement and must be maintained until global poliovirus eradication will be declared.

  3. 2015-2018 Regional Prevention Plan of Lombardy (Northern Italy) and sedentary prevention: a cross-sectional strategy to develop evidence-based programmes.

    Coppola, Liliana; Ripamonti, Ennio; Cereda, Danilo; Gelmi, Giusi; Pirrone, Lucia; Rebecchi, Andrea


    Cross-sector, life-course, and setting approaches are identified in the 2015-2018 Regional Prevention Plan (PRP) of Lombardy Region (Northern Italy) as valuable strategies to ensure the efficacy and sustainable prevention of the non-communicable disease (NCDs). The involvement of non-health sectors in health promotion activities represents a suitable strategy to affect on social, economic, and political determinants and to change environmental factors that could cause NCDs. A dialogue among communities, urban planning, and prevention know-how is a prerequisite to develop a system of policies suitable to promote healthy lifestyle in general and, specifically, active lifestyles. The 2015-2018 Lombardy PRP pursues its aims of health promotion and behavioural risk factors for NCDs prevention through programmes that implement their own setting networks (Health Promoting Schools - SPS; Workplace Health Promotion - WHP) and develop new networks. Sedentary lifestyle prevention and active lifestyle promotion are performed through the approach promoted by the Healthy Cities Programme (WHO), encouraging two main processes: 1. creating integrated capacity-building among health and social prevention services, academic research, and local stakeholders on different urban planning and design issues; 2. promoting community empowerment through active citizens participation. Through this process, Lombardy Region aims to orient its services developing evidence-based programmes and enhancing advocacy and mediating capacity skills in order to create a profitable partnership with non-health sectors. This paper reports the main impact data: 26,000 children that reach school by foot thanks to walking buses, 57% of 145 companies joining WHP are involved in promoting physical activity, 18,891 citizens who attend local walking groups.

  4. Prevalence of Staphylococcus aureus and of methicillin-resistant S. aureus clonal complexes in bulk tank milk from dairy cattle herds in Lombardy Region (Northern Italy).

    Cortimiglia, C; Luini, M; Bianchini, V; Marzagalli, L; Vezzoli, F; Avisani, D; Bertoletti, M; Ianzano, A; Franco, A; Battisti, A


    Staphylococcus aureus is the most important causative agent of subclinical mastitis in cattle resulting in reduced milk production and quality. Methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) strains has a clear zoonotic relevance, especially in the case of occupational exposure. The aim of the study was to evaluate the prevalence of S. aureus and MRSA in bulk tank milk (BTM) from dairy cattle herds in the Lombardy Region (Northern Italy) and to identify the main MRSA circulating genotypes. MRSA strains were characterized by susceptibility testing, multi-locus sequence typing (MLST), spa typing and SCCmec typing. A total 844 BTM samples were analysed and S. aureus and MRSA were detected in 47·2% and 3·8% of dairy herds, respectively. MLST showed that the majority (28/32) of isolates belonged to the typical livestock-associated lineages: ST398, ST97 and ST1. Interestingly, in this study we report for the first time the new ST3211, a single locus variant of ST(CC)22, with the newly described 462 aroE allele. Our study indicates high diffusion of S. aureus mastitis and low, but not negligible, prevalence of MRSA in the considered area, suggesting the need for planning specific control programmes for bovine mastitis caused by S. aureus, especially when MRSA is implicated.

  5. Integration of natural and technological risks in Lombardy, Italy

    Lari, S.; Frattini, P.; Crosta, G. B.


    Multi-risk assessment is becoming a valuable tool for land planning, emergency management and the deployment of mitigation strategies. Multi-risk maps combine all available information about hazard, vulnerability, and exposed values related to different dangerous phenomena, and provide a quantitative support to complex decision making. We analyse and integrate through an indicator-based approach nine major threats affecting the Lombardy Region (Northern Italy, 25 000 km2), namely landslide, avalanche, flood, wildfire, seismic, meteorological, industrial (technological) risks; road accidents, and work injuries. For each threat, we develop a set of indicators that express the physical risk and the coping capacity or system resilience. By combining these indicators through different weighting strategies (i.e. budgetary allocation, and fuzzy logic), we calculate a total risk for each threat. Then, we integrate these risks by applying AHP (Analytic Hierarchy Process) weighting, and we derive a set of multi-risk maps. Eventually, we identify the dominant risks for each zone, and a number of risk hot-spot areas. The proposed approach can be applied with different degree of detail depending on the quality of the available data. This allows the application of the method even in case of non homogeneous data, which is often the case for regional scale analyses. Moreover, it allows the integration of different risk types or metrics. Relative risk scores are provided from this methodology, not directly accounting for the temporal occurrence probability of the phenomena.

  6. Integration of natural and technological risks in Lombardy, Italy

    S. Lari


    Full Text Available Multi-risk assessment is becoming a valuable tool for land planning, emergency management and the deployment of mitigation strategies. Multi-risk maps combine all available information about hazard, vulnerability, and exposed values related to different dangerous phenomena, and provide a quantitative support to complex decision making.

    We analyse and integrate through an indicator-based approach nine major threats affecting the Lombardy Region (Northern Italy, 25 000 km2, namely landslide, avalanche, flood, wildfire, seismic, meteorological, industrial (technological risks; road accidents, and work injuries. For each threat, we develop a set of indicators that express the physical risk and the coping capacity or system resilience. By combining these indicators through different weighting strategies (i.e. budgetary allocation, and fuzzy logic, we calculate a total risk for each threat. Then, we integrate these risks by applying AHP (Analytic Hierarchy Process weighting, and we derive a set of multi-risk maps. Eventually, we identify the dominant risks for each zone, and a number of risk hot-spot areas.

    The proposed approach can be applied with different degree of detail depending on the quality of the available data. This allows the application of the method even in case of non homogeneous data, which is often the case for regional scale analyses. Moreover, it allows the integration of different risk types or metrics.

    Relative risk scores are provided from this methodology, not directly accounting for the temporal occurrence probability of the phenomena.

  7. Application of modelling tecniques to manage a population of grey squirrels (Sciurus carolinensis in Lombardy, northern Italy, and analysis of parameters estimates used in simulations

    Clara Tattoni


    Full Text Available Abstract Grey squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis, an invasive alien species, is currently replacing the native Eurasian red squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris in British Isles and north-west Italy. Grey squirrel has recently been reported in the Ticino Park (Lombardy region, NW Italy and the species is likely to spread in the woodlands connecting Italy to other European countries. We used GRASS Geographical Information System (GIS and Spatially Explicit Population Dynamics Models (SEPM as a conservation tool to predict the spread of grey squirrels and to test different management options in the Ticino Regional Park and surrounding areas in a 40 years time frame. The integrated approach of SEPM and GIS allowed us to suggest public administration a cost effective action plan to stop the invasion process. We also analyse the parameters used in the model highlighting some missing data in literature: we can address future field study with the aim to improve model performance. Riassunto Modelli per la gestione di una popolazione di Scoiattolo grigio (Sciurus carolinensis in Lombardia e stima dei parametri usati nelle simulazioni. La sostituzione da parte dello Scoiattolo grigio (Sciurus carolinensis, specie alloctona e invasiva, dello Scoiattolo rosso (Sciurus vulgaris, specie autoctona Europea, é attualmente in corso nelle Isole Britanniche e nell’Italia nord occidentale. Lo Scoiattolo grigio é stato recentemente segnalato nel Parco Lombardo della Valle del Ticino (Italia nord occidentale ed é probabile che si diffonda nelle foreste che connettono l’Italia agli altri paesi europei. In questo lavoro il Sistema Informativo Geografico GRASS e i modelli denominati Spatially Explicit Population Dynamics Models sono stati usati come strumento per prevedere la diffusione dello Scoiattolo grigio e per verificare differenti opzioni gestionali all’interno del Parco del




    Full Text Available The Fontana Marella cave, located in the Pre-Alps in Varese province (Lombardy, North Italy, supplied a Middle Pleistocene small mammal fauna, unique for this region.Thanks to the presence of Arvicola cf. mosbachensis and Pliomys episcopalis it is possible to date this sequence to the Early Toringian. Mostly for the predominant, presence of dominant Glis glis, Chionomys nivalis and Dinaromys bogdanovi, the faunal association is attributed to a temperate period,  but cooler and perhaps more arid that the present one. The find of Macroneomys is important because it allows to extend the geographic distribution of this rare species.   

  9. Descriptive epidemiology of selected birth defects, areas of Lombardy, Italy, 1999

    Frassoldi Emanuela


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Birth defects are a leading cause of neonatal and infant mortality in Italy, however little is known of the etiology of most defects. Improvements in diagnosis have revealed increasing numbers of clinically insignificant defects, while improvements in treatment have increased the survival of those with more serious and complex defects. For etiological studies, prevention, and management, it is important to have population-based monitoring which provides reliable data on the prevalence at birth of such defects. Methods We recently initiated population-based birth defect monitoring in the Provinces of Mantova, Sondrio and Varese of the Region of Lombardy, northern Italy, and report data for the first year of operation (1999. The registry uses all-electronic source files (hospital discharge files, death certificates, regional health files, and pathology reports and a proven case-generation methodology, which is described. The data were checked manually by consulting clinical records in hospitals. Completeness was checked against birth certificates by capture-recapture. Data on cases were coded according to the four-digit malformation codes of the International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision (ICD-9. We present data only on selected defects. Results We found 246 selected birth defects in 12,008 live births in 1999, 148 among boys and 98 among girls. Congenital heart defects (particularly septal defects were the most common (90.8/10,000, followed by defects of the genitourinary tract (34.1/10, 000 (particularly hypospadias in boys, digestive system (23.3/10,000 and central nervous system (14.9/10,000, orofacial clefts (10.8/10,000 and Down syndrome (8.3/10,000. Completeness was satisfactory: analysis of birth certificates resulted in the addition of two birth defect cases to the registry. Conclusion This is the first population-based analysis on selected major birth defects in the Region. The high birth prevalences for

  10. Trophic preference and preliminary indication of phylloplane fungal influence on the diet of the non-native Gammarus roeselii Gervais 1835 (Amphipoda, Gammaridae in the sub-lacustrine Ticino river basin (Lombardy, Northern Italy

    Daniele Paganelli


    Full Text Available Gammarids are one of the most successful invaders in freshwater ecosystems due to both their diet plasticity and high reproductive capacity. One such amphipod, Gammarus roeselii, has recently colonised the southern part of the sub-lacustrine Ticino River basin (Northern Italy, where its ecological niche overlaps with the native species Echinogammarus stammeri. In the present paper the food preferences of G. roeselii have been investigated, testing the palatability of different food sources: three macrophytes and three different leaf debris. Moreover, an explorative mycological analysis on the three different leaf debris used in the experiment has been performed. Results of the short-term experiment suggest that aquatic plants are less palatable than allocthonous detritus, probably because they can contain secondary metabolites (i.e. tannins and they have lower nutrient tissues with very high water content. On the contrary, G. roeselii showed a clear preference for the oak leaves, resulted colonized by a more abundant fungal biomass and, therefore, more palatable too.



    Seven Curculionoidea described from Lombardy (northern Italy) by Virginio Betta in 1857 and overlooked by subsequent authors are here treated. Since the Betta collection where their types are supposed to have been preserved was never traced, neotypes of all of them are designated with the purpose of clarifying their taxonomic status. Revised combinations are: Pseudeuparius pictus (Betta, 1857) comb. rev. from Tropideres Schoenherr, 1823; Pachytychius aericollis (Betta, 1857) comb. rev. from S...

  12. A methodology for elemental and organic carbon emission inventory and results for Lombardy region, Italy

    Caserini, Stefano [Politecnico di Milano, DICA Environmental Engineering Section, Piazza Leonardo da Vinci 32, 20133 Milano (Italy); Galante, Silvia, E-mail: [Politecnico di Milano, DICA Environmental Engineering Section, Piazza Leonardo da Vinci 32, 20133 Milano (Italy); Ozgen, Senem; Cucco, Sara; Gregorio, Katia de [Politecnico di Milano, DICA Environmental Engineering Section, Piazza Leonardo da Vinci 32, 20133 Milano (Italy); Moretti, Marco [Environmental Protection Agency of Lombardia Region, ARPA, 20124 Milano (Italy)


    This paper presents a methodology and its application for the compilation of elemental carbon (EC) and organic carbon (OC) emission inventories. The methodology consists of the estimation of EC and OC emissions from available total suspended particulate matter (TSP) emission inventory data using EC and OC abundances in TSP derived from an extensive literature review, by taking into account the local technological context. In particular, the method is applied to the 2008 emissions of Lombardy region, Italy, considering 148 different activities and 30 types of fuels, typical of Western Europe. The abundances estimated in this study may provide a useful basis to assess the emissions also in other emission contexts with similar prevailing sources and technologies. The dominant sources of EC and OC in Lombardy are diesel vehicles for EC and the residential wood combustion (RWC) for OC which together account for about 83% of the total emissions of both pollutants. The EC and OC emissions from industrial processes and other fuel (e.g., gasoline, kerosene and LPG) combustion are significantly lower, while non-combustion sources give an almost negligible contribution. Total EC + OC contribution to regional greenhouse gas emissions is positive for every sector assuming whichever GWP100 value within the range proposed in literature. An uncertainty assessment is performed through a Monte Carlo simulation for RWC, showing a large uncertainty range (280% of the mean value for EC and 70% for OC), whereas for road transport a qualitative analysis identified a narrower range of uncertainty. - Highlights: ► Diesel and wood combustion contribute to more than 80% of total EC and OC. ► More than 50% of EC emissions come from road transport. ► Monte Carlo method is used to assess the uncertainty of wood combustion emissions. ► Residential wood combustion is the main source of uncertainty of EC OC inventory. ► In terms of CO{sub 2}eq, EC and OC correspond to 3% of CO{sub 2

  13. Sensing Slow Mobility and Interesting Locations for Lombardy Region (italy): a Case Study Using Pointwise Geolocated Open Data

    Brovelli, M. A.; Oxoli, D.; Zurbarán, M. A.


    During the past years Web 2.0 technologies have caused the emergence of platforms where users can share data related to their activities which in some cases are then publicly released with open licenses. Popular categories for this include community platforms where users can upload GPS tracks collected during slow travel activities (e.g. hiking, biking and horse riding) and platforms where users share their geolocated photos. However, due to the high heterogeneity of the information available on the Web, the sole use of these user-generated contents makes it an ambitious challenge to understand slow mobility flows as well as to detect the most visited locations in a region. Exploiting the available data on community sharing websites allows to collect near real-time open data streams and enables rigorous spatial-temporal analysis. This work presents an approach for collecting, unifying and analysing pointwise geolocated open data available from different sources with the aim of identifying the main locations and destinations of slow mobility activities. For this purpose, we collected pointwise open data from the Wikiloc platform, Twitter, Flickr and Foursquare. The analysis was confined to the data uploaded in Lombardy Region (Northern Italy) - corresponding to millions of pointwise data. Collected data was processed through the use of Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) in order to organize them into a suitable database. This allowed to run statistical analyses on data distribution in both time and space by enabling the detection of users' slow mobility preferences as well as places of interest at a regional scale.

  14. A new rock glacier inventory of the Lombardy, Central Alps, Italy

    Scotti, R.; Brardinoni, F.; Alberti, S.; Frattini, P.; Crosta, G. B.


    The Lombardy Alps, with a surface of 2148 km2 above 2000 m a.s.l. (9% of the total) represents an important portion of the southern side of the orogen. For encompassing a variety of tectonic and climatic regimes, they represent an interesting area to examine environmental controls on periglacial processes. Today, technological developments in remote sensing techniques allow us to study periglacial landforms with increasing detail. We present a new inventory for the whole Lombardy Alps in which we identify and classify rock glaciers and protalus ramparts. The inventory has been conducted by combining a number of remotely-sensed images with field traverses. Specifically, the interpretation of high-resolution (0.5 x 0.5 m) digital aerial photos (2000, 2003, 2007) and a 2 m*2 m Digital Surface Model that cover the whole region has allowed inventorying a greater number of relevant landforms when compared to prior regional efforts. Measurements and photographs taken during fieldwork provided critical ground control for the validation of data extracted from remotely-based analysis. Rock glaciers have been mapped in GIS polygons. The inventory follows the specifics detailed by Scapozza and Mari (2010), with some additional information adapted from the PermaNET evidences guidelines (Cremonese et al., 2011). Landform attributes include, geographic coordinates, mountain sector, type, activity, area, elevation (min, max and mean), slope gradient, slope aspect, dominant lithology, vegetation at the front, and upstream presence/absence of a glacier. In total, we identify 1734 periglacial landforms covering a surface of 81,5 km2 (0,34% of the region). In terms of activity, the inventory includes 673 (39%) intact classified and 1061 (61%) relict landforms. The most common landform typology is the talus-lobate (931, 54%) followed by talus tongue-shaped (436, 25%) and protalus ramparts (232, 13%). Minimum elevation, often considered a good approximation of discontinuous permafrost

  15. CAND-LO 2014-15 study: changing epidemiology of candidemia in Lombardy (Italy).

    Prigitano, Anna; Cavanna, Caterina; Passera, Marco; Ossi, Cristina; Sala, Eugenio; Lombardi, Gianluigi; Grancini, Anna; De Luca, Concetta; Bramati, Simone; Gelmi, Marina; Tejada, Milvana; Grande, Romualdo; Farina, Claudio; Lallitto, Fabiola; Tortorano, Anna Maria


    The aim of this study was to monitor recent changes in the epidemiology of candidemia and in the antifungal susceptibility profiles of Candida isolates in one Italian region (Lombardy) in 2014-2015 in comparison with two other studies performed in the same area in 1997-1999 and in 2009. A laboratory-based surveillance was conducted in 11 microbiology laboratories. Identification of Candida isolates from 868 episodes and antifungal susceptibility testing (YeastOne) was performed locally. A progressive increase in the rate of candidemia up to 1.27/1000 admissions and 1.59/10,000 patient days was documented. In all the three surveys, Candida albicans remains the most frequently isolated species, ranging from 52 to 59 % of the etiology of BSIs. The epidemiological shift to the more resistant C. glabrata, observed between 1997-1999 and 2009 surveys, was not confirmed by our more recent data. The pattern of etiology of BSIs occurred in 2014-2015 overlaps that of the 90s. Acquired antifungal resistance is a rare event. No isolate had an amphoterin B minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC, mg/L) value higher than the epidemiological cutoff. All the echinocandin MIC distributions are typical for wild-type organisms except for those of two C. glabrata isolates. Fluconazole resistance declined from 24.9 % in the 2009 survey to 5.4 % in the recent one. Data from regional surveys may highlight the influence of therapeutic practices on the epidemiology of Candida BSIs and may optimize empirical therapies.




    Full Text Available A "mid-Carnian" transgressive succession, developed between the Breno carbonate platform and the semiarid coastal carbonates-sabkhas facies of the S. Giovanni Bianco Fm., is recorded in the northern Bergamasc Alps. This episode is characterized by the presence of two stratigraphic markers:  a Dark grey shales and siltstones ("Black Pelites", considered previously as the northern closure of the Gorno-Lower S. Giovanni Bianco Fms., but re-interpreted as the western pinch-out of the Lozio Shale depositional system. The Early Carnian Lozio Shale was deposited first in the Valle di Scalve-Lozio trough and later covered the carbonate platform (Breno Fm..b Fossiliferous, open subtidal limestones, marls and burrowed marly limestones ("Bioclastic Horizon" of the northern Bergamasc Alps. The spreading of shales and siltstones represents the first transgressive stage of the last Carnian sequence in Lombardy, after the "mid- Carnian" (Julian substage regional carbonate platform crisis (top of the Valcamonica Breno Fm.. The "Bioclastic Horizon" records the mfs represented by normal, open marine facies, identified and correlated throughout the Bergamasc Alps. Different petrographic and chemical characters between the Lozio Shale - "Black Pelites" and the Gorno-San Giovanni Bianco Fms. suggest different source areas: the former units are characterized by clasts derived from a metamorphic-intrusive area (placed northward and westward, whereas the latter units are characterized by prevailing volcaniclastic material. A climatic change (from arid to relatively humid conditions may be invoked to explain the crisis of the "mid-Carnian" carbonate platforms in the western Southern Alps and the regional spreading of fine-grained terrigenous material. 

  17. A new methodology to identify surface water bodies at risk by using pesticide monitoring data: The glyphosate case study in Lombardy Region (Italy).

    Di Guardo, Andrea; Finizio, Antonio


    In the last decades, several monitoring programs were established as an effect of EU Directives addressing the quality of water resources (drinking water, groundwater and surface water). Plant Protection Products (PPPs) are an obvious target of monitoring activities, since they are directly released into the environment. One of the challenges in managing the risk of pesticides at the territorial scale is identifying the locations in water bodies needing implementation of risk mitigation measures. In this, the national pesticides monitoring plans could be very helpful. However, monitoring of pesticides is a challenging task because of the high number of registered pesticides, cost of analyses, and the periodicity of sampling related to pesticide application and use. Extensive high-quality data-sets are consequently often missing. More in general, the information that can be obtained from monitoring studies are frequently undervalued by risk managers. In this study, we propose a new methodology providing indications about the need to implement mitigation measures in stretches of surface water bodies on a territory by combining historical series of monitoring data and GIS. The methodology is articulated in two distinct phases: a) acquisition of monitoring data and setting-up of informative layers of georeferenced data (phase 1) and b) statistical and expert analysis for the identification of areas where implementation of limitation or mitigation measures are suggested (phase 2). Our methodology identifies potentially vulnerable water bodies, considering temporal contamination trends and relative risk levels at selected monitoring stations. A case study is presented considering glyphosate monitoring data in Lombardy Region (Northern of Italy) for the 2008-2014 period. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Modelling carbon cycle of agro-forest ecosystems in Lombardy (Italy

    Colombo R


    Full Text Available In this paper we present a methodology for the estimation of Gross Primary Production (GPP, Net Primary Production (NPP and Net Ecosystem Production (NEP for the main agricultural and forest ecosystems of the Lombardia Region (Italy. The MOD17 model was parameterized according to the different agro-forestry ecosystems and applied at regional scale by using satellite data with a spatial resolution of 250m. The high spatial resolution along with fine classification agro-forestry ecosystems has allowed to accurately analyze the carbon budget of an extremely fragmented and complex environment such as the Lombardia Region. Modeling results showed the role of the forests in the carbon budget at regional scale and represent important information layer for the spatial analysis and for inferring the inter-annual variability of carbon sequestration due to impacts of extreme events and recent climate change (e.g., drought, heat wave, flooding, fires.

  19. Ground beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae of rice field banks and restored habitats in an agricultural area of the Po Plain (Lombardy, Italy

    Nicola Pilon


    Full Text Available An entomological investigation was carried out in an agricultural area, mainly rice fields, of the Po river plain, located in the municipalities of Lacchiarella (MI and Giussago (PV (Lombardy, Italy. In 2009 and 2010, ground beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae were sampled along rice field banks and in restored habitats, by means of pitfall traps. The area appeared as species-rich, compared to other anthropogenic habitats in the Po river pain. Most of the collected Carabids were species with a wide distribution in the Paleartic region, eurytopic and common in European agroecosystems. The assemblages were dominated by small-medium, macropterous species, with summer larvae. No endemic species were found. Species with southern distribution, rarely found north of the Po river, were also sampled. Amara littorea is recorded for the first time in Italy.


    Roberto Caldara


    Full Text Available Seven Curculionoidea described from Lombardy (northern Italy by Virginio Betta in 1857 and overlooked by subsequent authors are here treated. Since the Betta collection where their types are supposed to have been preserved was never traced, neotypes of all of them are designated with the purpose of clarifying their taxonomic status. Revised combinations are: Pseudeuparius pictus (Betta, 1857 comb. rev. from Tropideres Schoenherr, 1823; Pachytychius aericollis (Betta, 1857 comb. rev. from Smicronyx Schoenherr, 1843; Mecinus vittatus (Betta, 1857 comb. rev. from Gymnetron Schoenherr, 1825; Mecinus areolatus (Betta, 1857 comb. rev. from Gymnetron Schoenherr; Mecinus flavipes (Betta, 1857 comb. rev. from Gymnetron Schoenherr. The following new synonymies are established: Pseudeuparius centromaculatus (Gyllenhal, 1833 [= P. pictus (Betta, 1857 syn. n.]; Pachytychius sparsutus (Olivier, 1807 [= P. aericollis (Betta, 1857 syn. n.]; Smicronyx coecus (Reich, 1797 [= S. minusculus (Betta, 1857 syn. n.]; Mecinus labilis (Herbst, 1795 [= M. vittatus (Betta, 1857 syn. n.]; Mecinus pascuorum (Gyllenhal, 1813 [= M. areolatus (Betta, 1857 syn. n.]; Mecinus latiusculus (Jacquelin du Val, 1855 [= M. flavipes (Betta, 1857 syn. n.]; Mecinus circulatus (Marsham, 1802 [= M. sericatus Betta, 1857 syn. n.].

  1. Surveillance of acute infectious gastroenteritis (1992-2009) and food-borne disease outbreaks (1996-2009) in Italy, with a focus on the Piedmont and Lombardy regions.

    Mughini-Gras, L; Graziani, C; Biorci, F; Pavan, A; Magliola, R; Ricci, A; Gilli, G; Carraro, E; Busani, L


    We describe trends in the occurrence of acute infectious gastroenteritis (1992 to 2009) and food-borne disease outbreaks (1996 to 2009) in Italy. In 2002, the Piedmont region implemented a surveillance system for early detection and control of food-borne disease outbreaks; in 2004, the Lombardy region implemented a system for surveillance of all notifiable human infectious diseases. Both systems are internet based. We compared the regional figures with the national mean using official notification data provided by the National Infectious Diseases Notification System (SIMI) and the National Institute of Statistics (ISTAT), in order to provide additional information about the epidemiology of these diseases in Italy. When compared with the national mean, data from the two regional systems showed a significant increase in notification rates of non-typhoid salmonellosis and infectious diarrhea other than non-typhoid salmonellosis, but for foodborne disease outbreaks, the increase was not statistically significant. Although the two regional systems have different objectives and structures, they showed improved sensitivity regarding notification of cases of acute infectious gastroenteritis and, to a lesser extent, food-borne disease outbreaks, and thus provide a more complete picture of the epidemiology of these diseases in Italy.

  2. Location of quarries of magnesian lime used as raw material of Roman plasters in western Lombardy (Italy

    Roberto Bugini


    Full Text Available Lime as building material was widely diffused in Roman architecture of western Lombardy. The presence of magnesite (magnesium carbonate was detected in painted plasters coming from roman sites of Milano: magnesite indicates the use of dolomite to make the lime. Dolomite rocks widely outcrop in the Lombard Prealps: light grey dolomites and dolomitic limestones (Dolomia del Salvatore, Ladinian-Anisian; grey dolomites, sometimes with cyclothemes (Dolomia Principale, Norian. There is no evidence of Roman lime quarries or kilns in this area; the Romans probably exploited the same dolomite outcrops, located along the eastern shore of lake Maggiore, where lime was produced from the Middle Ages onwards. The glacio-fluvial deposits of the middle course of the river Adda (cobbles, pebbles of siliceous limestone together with limestone and dolomite outcropping in the river basin were another medieval and modern source of raw material, mainly to make a moderately hydraulic lime (called “calce forte”, but this kind of lime is lacking in Roman plasters.

  3. The standardization of results on hair testing for drugs of abuse: An interlaboratory exercise in Lombardy Region, Italy.

    Stramesi, C; Vignali, C; Groppi, A; Caligara, M; Lodi, F; Pichini, S; Jurado, C


    Hair testing for drugs of abuse is performed in Lombardy by eleven analytical laboratories accredited for forensic purposes, the most frequent purposes being driving license regranting and workplace drug testing. Individuals undergoing hair testing for these purposes can choose the laboratory in which the analyses have to be carried out. The aim of our study was to perform an interlaboratory exercise in order to verify the level of standardization of hair testing for drugs of abuse in these accredited laboratories; nine out of the eleven laboratories participated in this exercise. Sixteen hair strands coming from different subjects were longitudinally divided in 3-4 aliquots and distributed to participating laboratories, which were requested to apply their routine methods. All the participants analyzed opiates (morphine and 6-acetylmorphine) and cocainics (cocaine and benzoylecgonine) while only six analyzed methadone and amphetamines (amphetamine, methamphetamine, MDMA, MDA and MDEA) and five Δ(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). The majority of the participants (seven labs) performed acidic hydrolysis to extract the drugs from the hair and analysis by GC-MS, while two labs used LC-MS/MS. Eight laboratories performed initial screening tests by Enzyme Multiplied Immunoassay Technique (EMIT), Enzyme-linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA) or Cloned Enzyme Donor Immunoassay (CEDIA). Results demonstrated a good qualitative performance for all the participants, since no false positive results were reported by any of them. Quantitative data were quite scattered, but less in samples with low concentrations of analytes than in those with higher concentrations. Results from this first regional interlaboratory exercise show that, on the one hand, individuals undergoing hair testing would have obtained the same qualitative results in any of the nine laboratories. On the other hand, the scatter in quantitative results could cause some inequalities if any interpretation of the data is

  4. Stroke management in northern Lombardy: organization of an emergency-urgency network and development of a connection between prehospital and in-hospital settings.

    Vidale, Simone; Verrengia, Elena; Gerardi, Francesca; Arnaboldi, Marco; Bezzi, Giacomo; Bono, Giorgio; Guidotti, Mario; Grampa, Giampiero; Perrone, Patrizia; Zarcone, Davide; Zoli, Alberto; Beghi, Ettore; Agostoni, Elio; Porazzi, Daniele; Landriscina, Mario


    Stroke is the leading cause of disability in adulthood, and the principal aim of care in cerebrovascular disease is the reduction of this negative outcome and mortality. Several studies demonstrated the efficacy of thrombolytic therapy in ischemic stroke, but up to 80% of cases could not be treated because the diagnostic workup exceeds the time limit. In this article, we described the design of a study conducted in the northern Lombardy, within the district of Sondrio, Lecco, Como, and Varese. The awaited results of this study are reduction of avoidable delay, organization of an operative stroke emergency network, and identification of highly specialized structures. The study schedules education and data registration with implementation and training of acute stroke management algorithms. The use of standardized protocols during prehospital and in-hospital phase can optimize acute stroke pathways. The results of this study could contribute to the assessment of an effective and homogeneous health system to manage acute stroke.

  5. Vertical stratification of selected Hymenoptera in a remnant forest of the Po Plain (Italy, Lombardy (Hymenoptera: Ampulicidae, Crabronidae, Sphecidae

    Filippo Di Giovanni


    Full Text Available Communities of the canopy of temperate forests are still relatively unexplored. Furthermore, very little is known on how vertical stratification for some insect groups is related to biological strategies. In this study, we investigated the community composition of both canopy and understory of the families Ampulicidae, Crabronidae and Sphecidae (Hymenoptera of the Natural Reserve of “Bosco della Fontana”, a remnant lowland forest in northeastern Italy. Observed patterns in vertical stratification have been related to species foraging habits. Our study reveals that the bulk of the community of Spheciformes of the understory consists of species predating dipterans and spiders, while species associated with the canopy are mainly predators of sap-sucking honeydew producers and epiphyte grazers, like aphids, thrips, and barkflies. Comparing the communities of canopy and understory may lead to a better understanding of species ecology and provides useful information to forest managers.

  6. Phylogeography, phylodynamics and transmission chains of bovine viral diarrhea virus subtype 1f in Northern Italy.

    Cerutti, Francesco; Luzzago, Camilla; Lauzi, Stefania; Ebranati, Erika; Caruso, Claudio; Masoero, Loretta; Moreno, Ana; Acutis, Pier Luigi; Zehender, Gianguglielmo; Peletto, Simone


    Bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) type 1 in Italy is characterized by high genetic diversity, with at least 20 subtypes. Subtype 1f is endemic in a restricted geographic area, meaning that it has local distribution. We investigated the population dynamics of BVDV-1f in Northern Italy and characterized the transmission chains of a subset of samples from Piedmont and Aosta Valley regions. A total of 51 samples from 1966 to 2013 were considered and 5' UTR sequences were used for phylogeography. A subset of 12 samples was selected for Npro gene sequencing and further characterization of the transmission chains using both molecular and epidemiological data. Phylogeography estimated the root of BVDV-1f tree in Veneto in 1965. Four significant subclades included sequences clustering by region: Lombardy (n=3), Lombardy and Emilia-Romagna (n=7), Piedmont (n=17), Piedmont and Aosta Valley (n=21). The Piedmont-only subclade has a ladder-like branching structure, while the Piedmont and Aosta Valley subclade has a nearly complete binary structure. In the subset, the outbreak reconstruction identified one sample from Piedmont as the most probable source of infection for the Aosta Valley cases. An ad hoc questionnaire submitted to public veterinarians revealed connections between sampled and non-sampled farms by means of trades, exhibitions and markets. According to the phylogeography, BVDV-1f moved westward, entering from Veneto, and spreading to Lombardy and Emilia-Romagna in the early 1990s, and finally to Piedmont and Aosta Valley in the first decade of 2000s. Both phylogeographic analyses on the whole dataset and on the selection of Npro dataset pointed out that subtype 1f entered Aosta Valley from Piedmont. The integration of molecular and epidemiological data revealed connections between farms, and such approach should be considered in any control plan. In Aosta Valley, the study showed that BVDV1f can be controlled only monitoring the introduction of cattle from Piedmont

  7. The status of invasive pneumococcal disease among children younger than 5 years of age in north-west Lombardy, Italy

    Riva Enrica


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Streptococcus pneumoniae is a leading cause of invasive infection in young children causing morbidity and mortality. Active surveillance systems of invasive pneumococcal disease (IPD are recommended worldwide. The aim of this study was to estimate the current incidence of IPD and to describe the serotype distribution and the antimocrobial susceptibility of S. pneumoniae isolates in children aged less than 5 years residing in North-West Lombardy, Italy. Methods A twelve-month prospective active surveillance system recruited all children aged less than 5 years admitted for suspicion of IPD at emergency room of ten hospitals located in the monitored area. Blood samples were taken in all participants for confirmation of IPD based on isolation of S. pneumoniae from blood. Pneumococcal meningitis and sepsis were additionally confirmed by cerebrospinal fluid analysis. Serotyping and antimicrobial susceptibility testing were performed on isolates from blood. Results A total of 15 confirmed cases of IPD were detected among 135 recruited children, including pneumonia (n = 8, bacteremia (n = 4, sepsis (n = 2 and meningitis (n = 1. The annual IPD incidence rate was 50.0/100,000 (95%CI, 30.5-82.5/100,000. Incidence was 58.3/100,000 (28.8-120.1/100,000 among children aged less than 2 years and 44.4/100,000 (22.9-87.5/100,000 among children aged 2–4 years. Thirteen isolates were typified. The most common serotype was 19A (23.1% that together with serotypes 1, 7F and 19F accounted for 69.2% of typified isolates. Serotypes 14, 23F, 12B and 15C were also identified. The 7- and 13-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccines covered respectively 30.8% and 84.6% of typified IPD cases. One isolate (serotype 15C was penicillin-resistant and caused meningitis. Conclusions The inclusion of the 13-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine in immunization programs of young children might be considered to reduce incidence and morbidity

  8. Anthrax phylogenetic structure in Northern Italy

    Corrò Michela


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Anthrax has almost disappeared from mainland Europe, except for the Mediterranean region where cases are still reported. In Central and South Italy, anthrax is enzootic, but in the North there are currently no high risk areas, with only sporadic cases having been registered in the last few decades. Regional genetic and molecular characterizations of anthrax in these regions are still lacking. To investigate the potential molecular diversity of Bacillus anthracis in Northern Italy, canonical Single nucleotide polymorphism (canSNP and Multilocus variable number tandem repeat analysis (MLVA genotyping was performed against all isolates from animal outbreaks registered in the last twenty years in the region. Findings Six B. anthracis strains were analyzed. The canSNP analysis indicates the presence of three sublineages/subgroups each of which belong to one of the 12 worldwide CanSNP genotypes: B.Br.CNEVA (3 isolates, A.Br.005/006 (1 isolates and A.008/009 (2 isolate. The latter is the dominant canSNP genotype in Italy. The 15-loci MLVA analysis revealed five different genotypes among the isolates. Conclusions The major B branch and the A.Br.005/006 were recovered in the Northeast region. The genetic structure of anthrax discovered in this area differs from the rest of the country, suggesting the presence of a separate and independent B. anthracis molecular evolution niche. Although the isolates analyzed in this study are limited in quantity and representation, these results indicate that B. anthracis genetic diversity changes around the Alps.

  9. Surveillance and vaccination coverage of measles and rubella in Northern Italy.

    Amendola, Antonella; Bubba, Laura; Piralla, Antonio; Binda, Sandro; Zanetti, Alessandro; Pariani, Elena; Ranghiero, Alberto; Premoli, Marta; Pellegrinelli, Laura; Coppola, Liliana; Gramegna, Maria; Baldanti, Fausto; Zanetti, Alessandro


    Measles and rubella are infectious diseases and humans are the only reservoir of these infections. Effective vaccines are available with the potential for measles (MV) and rubella (RuV) virus eradication. According to the World Health Organisation guidelines, a national plan was approved in Italy in 2013 to achieve the MV/RuV elimination by 2015, and active MV/RuV integrated surveillance initiated. Towards this purpose, a regional laboratory centre was set up on 1 September 2013 in Lombardy, Northern Italy. This paper aimed at: (1) evaluating measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine coverage and MV/RuV notified cases retrospectively; and (2) presenting the results of MV/RuV integrated surveillance (laboratory confirmed and viral genetic profiles).   The 95% target for MMR vaccine coverage was achieved in 2001, and coverage increased until 2007 (96.6%), but then a decreasing trend was observed. Since 2000 to 2014, 3026 rubella cases were notified, with nearly 58% of them in the 2002 epidemic. From 2009, less than 45 RuV cases per year were reported. From 2000 to 2014, 5024 measles cases were notified. Since 2008, three large outbreaks (in 2008, 2011, and 2013) were observed. From data obtained during our surveillance activity, there were no rubella cases, and 57.5% (46/80) collected samples were MV-positive by real-time RT-PCR. A fragment of the MV N gene was sequenced from 37 MV-positive samples; D8, D9, and B3 genotypes were detected. Data obtained retrospectively and from active surveillance underline the necessity to achieve and maintain high vaccination coverage and to improve surveillance and the effectiveness of healthcare actions.

  10. Roman Coarse Ware from Bavaria, Austria and Northern Italy

    Fluegel, Ch. [Landesstelle fuer die nichtstaatlichen Museen in Bayern (Germany); Fluegel, E. [Universitaet Erlangen-Nuernberg, Institut fuer Palaontologie (Germany); Haeusler, W. [Technische Universitaet Muenchen, Physik-Department E15 (Germany); Joachimski, M. [Universitaet Erlangen-Nuernberg, Institut fuer Geologie und Mineralogie (Germany); Koller, J.; Baumer, U. [Doerner-Institut (Germany); Wagner, U. [Technische Universitaet Muenchen, Physik-Department E15 (Germany)


    This interdisciplinary study focuses on a specific type of Roman coarse ware that was widely distributed in Bavaria, Austria and northern Italy during the 1st half of the 1st century AD. Various physical methods were applied to study the provenance of this characteristic marble tempered blackware and to assess its production techniques. The blackware found in large numbers on the Auerberg and at other sites in southern Germany can be identified as imported from East Tyrol, Austria.

  11. Off-patent generic medicines vs. off-patent brand medicines for six reference drugs: a retrospective claims data study from five local healthcare units in the Lombardy Region of Italy.

    Giorgio L Colombo

    Full Text Available The scientific documentation supporting the potential clinical and economic benefits of a growing use of off-patent generic drugs in clinical practice seems to be limited in Italy as yet.We compared differences in outcomes between off-patent generic drugs and off-patent brand drugs in real clinical practice. The outcomes were: persistence and compliance with therapy, mortality, and other health resources consumption (hospitalizations, specialist examinations, other drugs and total costs. Retrospective analysis was carried out by using the administrative databases of five Local Healthcare Units (ASLs - Aziende Sanitarie Locali in the Lombardy Region of Italy. Data from the five ASLs were aggregated through a meta-analysis, which produced an estimate indicator of the mean or percentage difference between the two groups (branded vs. generic and their respective significance tests. The therapeutic areas and studied drugs were: diabetes: metformin - A10BA02; hypertension: amlodipine - C08CA01; dyslipidemia: simvastatin - C10AA01; psychiatry: sertraline - N06AB06; cardiology: propafenone - C01BC03; osteoporosis: alendronate - M05BA04.The 5 Local Healthcare Units (ASL represent a population of 3,847,004 inhabitants. The selected sample included 347,073 patients, or 9.02% of the total ASL population; 67% of the patients were treated with off-patent brand drugs. The average age was 68 years, with no difference between the two groups. After 34 months of observation, compliance and persistence were in favor to generic drugs in all therapeutic areas and statistically significant in the metformin, amlodipine, simvastatin, and sertraline groups. The clinical outcomes (hospitalizations, mortality, and other health costs show no statistically significant differences between off-patent generic vs. off-patent brand medicines.Off-patent generic drugs appear to be a therapy option of choice in Italy as well, based on clinical outcomes and economic consequences

  12. Off-patent generic medicines vs. off-patent brand medicines for six reference drugs: a retrospective claims data study from five local healthcare units in the Lombardy Region of Italy.

    Colombo, Giorgio L; Agabiti-Rosei, Enrico; Margonato, Alberto; Mencacci, Claudio; Montecucco, Carlo Maurizio; Trevisan, Roberto


    The scientific documentation supporting the potential clinical and economic benefits of a growing use of off-patent generic drugs in clinical practice seems to be limited in Italy as yet. We compared differences in outcomes between off-patent generic drugs and off-patent brand drugs in real clinical practice. The outcomes were: persistence and compliance with therapy, mortality, and other health resources consumption (hospitalizations, specialist examinations, other drugs) and total costs. Retrospective analysis was carried out by using the administrative databases of five Local Healthcare Units (ASLs - Aziende Sanitarie Locali) in the Lombardy Region of Italy. Data from the five ASLs were aggregated through a meta-analysis, which produced an estimate indicator of the mean or percentage difference between the two groups (branded vs. generic) and their respective significance tests. The therapeutic areas and studied drugs were: diabetes: metformin - A10BA02; hypertension: amlodipine - C08CA01; dyslipidemia: simvastatin - C10AA01; psychiatry: sertraline - N06AB06; cardiology: propafenone - C01BC03; osteoporosis: alendronate - M05BA04. The 5 Local Healthcare Units (ASL) represent a population of 3,847,004 inhabitants. The selected sample included 347,073 patients, or 9.02% of the total ASL population; 67% of the patients were treated with off-patent brand drugs. The average age was 68 years, with no difference between the two groups. After 34 months of observation, compliance and persistence were in favor to generic drugs in all therapeutic areas and statistically significant in the metformin, amlodipine, simvastatin, and sertraline groups. The clinical outcomes (hospitalizations, mortality, and other health costs) show no statistically significant differences between off-patent generic vs. off-patent brand medicines. Off-patent generic drugs appear to be a therapy option of choice in Italy as well, based on clinical outcomes and economic consequences, both for the

  13. Social housing provision in the Italian region of Lombardy: Between market, state and community

    Urbani, S.; Van Bortel, G.A.


    This paper describes social housing developments in Lombardy, one of the most affluent regions in the Italy. Housing policy in Italy is mainly the responsibility of the Regions. We discuss the challenges of social housing provision and the interplay between market, state, community and third sector

  14. Social housing provision in the Italian region of Lombardy: Between market, state and community

    Urbani, S.; Van Bortel, G.A.


    This paper describes social housing developments in Lombardy, one of the most affluent regions in the Italy. Housing policy in Italy is mainly the responsibility of the Regions. We discuss the challenges of social housing provision and the interplay between market, state, community and third sector

  15. Epidemiology and Molecular Typing of Pregnancy-Associated Listeriosis Cases in Lombardy, Italy, over a 10-Year Period (2005–2014)

    Filipello, Virginia; Amato, Ettore; Gori, Maria; Huedo, Pol; Ciceri, Giulia; Lomonaco, Sara


    In developed countries, pregnancy-related listeriosis accounts for 20–43% of total invasive listeriosis. This work describes the first pregnancy-related listeriosis survey in Italy based on two data sources, that is, mandatory notification system and regional laboratory-based network. Out of 610 listeriosis cases reported over a 10-year period, 40 were pregnancy-related (6.6%). Among these, 29 pregnancy-related isolates were available and have been analysed with serotyping, Pulsed-Field Gel Electrophoresis, and Multi-Virulence-Locus Sequence Typing. No maternal fatality was recorded, but 11 (29.7%) pregnancies resulted in a foetal death, a miscarriage, or a birth of a foetus dying immediately after birth. The average incidence of pregnancy-related listeriosis was 4.3 cases per 100000 births, and the proportion of pregnancy-associated listeriosis among ethnic minorities was significantly higher compared to the general population (30.0% versus 3.5%, P types (VTs) were identified. Five VTs accounted for 45% of the total cases and coincided with those of previously described Epidemic Clones (ECs) of L. monocytogenes. PMID:28408795

  16. The Quaternary N-Apennine tectonics recorded in the Po Basin: stratigraphic and geomorphological evidences along a N-S traverse in Lombardy (Italy)

    Bersezio, Riccardo; Zuffetti, Chiara; Cavalli, Emmanuele; Baio, Mariangelo; Cantone, Martino; Inzoli, Silvia; Mele, Mauro; Pavia, Fabrizio; Rigato, Valentina; Rusnighi, Yuri; Rodondi, Cecilia; Sozzi, Samuele


    The stratigraphy and geomorphology of the Quaternary Po Basin fill record the tectonic evolution of the foreland shared by Apennine and Alpine mountain ranges. The study of N-S, 3-D cross-sections, orthogonal to the average axial strike of the basin, permits to investigate the interplay between the tectonics of the Apennine fold and thrust belt (the Quaternary southern active range of the basin) and the glacial-related dynamics along the Alpine side (the northern main source of sediments), that drove the evolution of the depositional systems and landscapes of the interposed basin. Here we present a 25-50 Km wide, 3-D cross-section that parallels the Adda river course, connecting the Southern Alps foothills with the northernmost relieves of the Apennines, close to the present-day Po river. The GIS-based work integrates surface geology (1:10.000 mapping) with subsurface correlation of about 1000 borehole data points (20 to >1000 m deep, most ranging between 100-200 m b.g.s.) and geophysical surveys (VES, ERGI, GPR; about 200 data points, maximum investigation depth of about 300 m b.g.s.). Some radiocarbon and OSL age determinations, integrated by micropaleontological and petrographic analyses, brought additional constraints to the available stratigraphic calibration of the tectono-sedimentary evolution. The first release of the 3-D architectural model yields some suggestions: 1) In the Early Pleistocene, the northward propagation of the Apennine blind thrusts shaped the southern and central parts of the basin in a complex pattern of fault-propagation folds and intervening depocentres. The contemporary bulging of the northern Alpine side induced the progressive southward entrenchment and filling of alluvial valleys into the Plio-Pleistocene shallow marine units. A terraced landscape was confined to this northernmost part of the basin. In the depocentre, the coarse-grained depositional systems, fed by the Southern Alps, interfingered with the sands delivered by the




    Full Text Available Two new Megalancosaurus specimens collected from the Norian (Late Triassic Calcare di Zorzino (Zorzino Limestone Formation (Bergamo, Lombardy, Northern Italy, and from the coeval Dolomia di Forni (Forni Dolostone Formation (Udine, Friuli, North-eastern Italy improve our knowledge of skeletal anatomy and mode of life of this genus. Morphology of observable skull elements and cervical vertebrae in one of the new specimens shows some resemblance to the possible Triassic bird Protoavis, while the postcranial skeleton of Megalancosaurus is completely non-avian. This may suggest that either Megalancosaurus and Protoavis developed a similar neck structure as a response to the same functional requirement, or that part of the disarticulated material ascribed to Protoavis may indeed belong to a Megalancosaurus-like reptile. Megalancosaurus shows a very high adaptation to arboreal life and a peculiar feeding strategy. Recent suggestions that Megalancosaurus may have been a glider and a possible model for bird ancestry are discussed. Some skeletal features of Megalancosaurus may indeed be interpreted as gliding adaptation, but evidence is weak, and if this reptile was a glider, however, its gliding bauplan should have been completely different from the one usually accepted for bird ancestors, showing instead more morphological similarities with gliding squirrels, phalangeriids and putative ancestors of bats and pterosaurs (according to a non cursorial model for these latter. 

  18. Human exposure to piroplasms in Central and Northern Italy

    Simona Gabrielli


    Full Text Available A serosurvey has been conducted in Northern and Central Italy to investigate the presence in humans of antibodies against zoonotic Babesia and Theileria species. The study focused on a total of 432 volunteers, of which 290 were persistently exposed to tick bites because of their jobs (forester employees, livestock keepers, veterinary practitioners, farmers and hunters and 142 resident in the same area less frequently exposed. An indirect fluorescent antibody test (IFAT for humans was used to detect antibodies to Babesia microti, IFAT tests for veterinary use were modified to detect reactivity to Babesia bovis, Babesia canis and Theileria equi. A laboratory-derived ELISA was employed to detect antibodies to Babesia divergens. Both reactive and 10 negative sera were analysed against plasmodial antigens to evaluate possible aspecificity. A high reactivity to piroplasm antigens was found, showing significant difference between the sera of the two groups of volunteers (24% vs 7.0%; p<0.001. No cross-reactivity was observed, while each professional group showed reactivity that would fit with the professional risk exposure. In particular, a high reactivity to B. microti and B. divergens antigens was observed in foresters and hunters (32% and 12%, respectively. This is the first report on the human seroreactivity to piroplasms in Italy; it also provides additional epidemiological information on these tick-borne zoonoses in Europe. Our findings suggest the possible occurrence of piroplasm infections in Italy and alert physicians to consider these otherwise neglected parasitic diseases when dealing with any febrile illness, especially in subjects exposed to tick bites.

  19. The Degree of One Health Implementation in the West Nile Virus Integrated Surveillance in Northern Italy, 2016.

    Paternoster, Giulia; Tomassone, Laura; Tamba, Marco; Chiari, Mario; Lavazza, Antonio; Piazzi, Mauro; Favretto, Anna R; Balduzzi, Giacomo; Pautasso, Alessandra; Vogler, Barbara R


    West Nile virus (WNV) is endemic in the Po valley area, Northern Italy, and within the legal framework of the national plan for the surveillance of human vector-borne diseases, WNV surveillance has over time been implemented. The surveillance plans are based on the transdisciplinary and trans-sectorial collaboration between regional institutions involved in public, animal, and environmental health. This integrated surveillance targets mosquitoes, wild birds, humans, and horses and aims at early detecting the viral circulation and reducing the risk of infection in the human populations. The objective of our study was to assess the degree of One Health (OH) implementation (OH-ness) of the WNV surveillance system in three North Italian regions (Emilia-Romagna, Lombardy, Piedmont) in 2016, following the evaluation protocol developed by the Network for Evaluation of One Health (NEOH). In detail, we (i) described the OH initiative (drivers, outcomes) and its system (boundaries, aim, dimensions, actors, stakeholders) and (ii) scored different aspects of this initiative (i.e., OH-thinking, -planning, -sharing, -learning, transdisciplinarity and leadership), with values from 0 (=no OH approach) to 1 (=perfect OH approach). We obtained a mean score for each aspect evaluated. We reached high scores for OH thinking (0.90) and OH planning (0.89). Lower scores were attributed to OH sharing (0.83), transdisciplinarity and leadership (0.77), and OH learning (0.67), highlighting some critical issues related to communication and learning gaps. The strengths and weaknesses detected by the described quantitative evaluation will be investigated in detail by a qualitative evaluation (process evaluation), aiming to provide a basis for the development of shared recommendations to refine the initiative and conduct it in a more OH-oriented perspective.

  20. Prevalence of otitis externa in stray cats in northern Italy.

    Perego, Roberta; Proverbio, Daniela; Bagnagatti De Giorgi, Giada; Della Pepa, Alessandra; Spada, Eva


    Feline otitis externa is a dermatological disorder that has not been evaluated much in stray cats. One hundred and eighty-seven stray cats were randomly selected during a trap-neuter-release programme to investigate the prevalence of otitis externa in stray cat colonies in northern Italy. Swabs for cytological examination were obtained from the external ear canal of each cat. A direct otoscopic assessment of the external ear canal was made in 86/187 cats. Cytological evidence of otitis externa was present in 55.1% of cats. The influence on otitis of age, gender, habitat and season of sampling was tested, but no risk factors were found. Otodectes cynotis (as a sole agent or in combination) was the primary cause of otitis in 53.3% of cats. Cocci and rods, either alone or in combination with other agents, were perpetuating factors in 71.8% and 29.1% of cats, respectively. Pregnancy status was a risk factor for otitis caused by coccal infections. Malassezia species, alone or in combination, was the perpetuating factor in 50.5% of cats with otitis. Urban habitat and winter season were risk factors for otitis associated with Malassezia species. Demodex cati was identified as an incidental finding in two cats. There was good agreement between otoscopy and cytology with regard to the diagnosis of otitis externa. The results of this study show a high prevalence of otitis externa in stray colony cats and provide information on causal factors for feline otitis externa.

  1. Prescription and choice of diagnostic imaging by physician specialty in Alzheimer's Centers (Unità di Valutazione Alzheimer - UVA) in Northern Italy.

    Frisoni, Giovanni B; Galluzzi, Samantha; Riello, Roberta


    Physician's specialty has been shown to have an effect on health outcomes and financial expenditure in a number of conditions. This is particularly true in the differential diagnosis of cognitive deterioration, in which technological procedures are needed. The aim of this study is to assess the effect of physician specialty on the prescription of diagnostic imaging (CT and MR) in patients with cognitive impairment, referred to Alzheimer Evaluation Units (Unità di Valutazione Alzheimer) in Northern Italy. An ad-hoc questionnaire was sent to UVA referents in northern Italy (Lombardy, Piedmont, Trentino, Emilia-Romagna and Veneto), requesting information on the frequency of prescriptions for CT and MR and reasons for the choice, on a 0 to 7 scale. The physician-in-charge was a neurologist in 22 and a geriatrician in 22 Alzheimer's centers. Intensive use of CT was similar in neurologists and geriatricians (64 vs 68%), whereas intensive use of MR was more frequent in neurologists (41 vs 10%; p = 0.03). Overall, organizational factors (availability of the scanner on-site and waiting list for imaging, mean weight = 1.6 +/- 1.4) were as important as patient-related factors (age, severity of cognitive impairment, and clinical suspicion of cerebrovascular disease, mean weight 1.7 +/- 1.4; p = 0.84). Sixty-five percent of neurologists based their choices between CT and MR on patient-related and 35% on organizational factors, whereas the opposite proportion was found for geriatricians (29 vs 71%, p = 0.04). The high weight of organizational factors on the prescription of diagnostic imaging is not consistent with an evidence-based diagnostic system.

  2. Epidemiology of Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis in Northern Italy.

    Sergio Harari

    Full Text Available Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF is the most common and severe form of idiopathic interstitial pneumonia. Despite its clinical relevance, few studies have examined the epidemiology of IPF and temporal variation in disease incidence and prevalence. Aim of the study was to investigate the prevalence, incidence and trends of IPF in Lombardy, a region with nearly 10 million inhabitants, during 2005-2010.For the identification of IPF patients, we used healthcare administrative databases of Lombardy Healthcare System and adopted three algorithms: generic, broad and narrow case definition (GCD, BCD, NCD. IPF cases were identified according to diagnoses reported in inpatient and outpatient claims occurred during 2000-2010. We estimated age- and sex-adjusted annual prevalence and incidence rates from 2005 to 2010, thus allowing for a 5-year washout period.The mean annual incidence rate was estimated at 2.3 and 5.3 per 100,000 person-years using NCD and GCD, respectively. IPF incidence was higher among males, and increased with age. Trend remained stable over the years. The estimated annual prevalence rate was 35.5, 22.4, and 12.6 per 100,000 person-years using GCD, BCD and NCD, respectively, and increased with age. Moreover, we observed a positive trend over the years. Using BCD and NCD, prevalence was higher among males.The results of this study, which is one of the largest population-based survey ever conducted according to strict criteria, indicated that prevalence of IPF increased across the years while incidence remained stable, thus suggesting that survival with IPF has improved.

  3. Three-dimensional seismo-tectonics in the Po Valley basin, Northern Italy

    Turrini, Claudio; Angeloni, Pamela; Lacombe, Olivier; Ponton, Maurizio; Roure, François


    The Po Valley (Northern Italy) is a composite foreland-foredeep basin caught in between the Southern Alps and Northern Apennine mountain belts. By integrating the 3D structural model of the region with the public earthquake dataset, the seismo-tectonics of the basin is shown at different scales of o

  4. The Alto Tiberina Near Fault Observatory (northern Apennines, Italy

    Lauro Chiaraluce


    Full Text Available The availability of multidisciplinary and high-resolution data is a fundamental requirement to understand the physics of earthquakes and faulting. We present the Alto Tiberina Near Fault Observatory (TABOO, a research infrastructure devoted to studying preparatory processes, slow and fast deformation along a fault system located in the upper Tiber Valley (northern Apennines, dominated by a 60 km long low-angle normal fault (Alto Tiberina, ATF active since the Quaternary. TABOO consists of 50 permanent seismic stations covering an area of 120 × 120 km2. The surface seismic stations are equipped with 3-components seismometers, one third of them hosting accelerometers. We instrumented three shallow (250 m boreholes with seismometers, creating a 3-dimensional antenna for studying micro-earthquakes sources (detection threshold is ML 0.5 and detecting transient signals. 24 of these sites are equipped with continuous geodetic GPS, forming two transects across the fault system. Geochemical and electromagnetic stations have been also deployed in the study area. In 36 months TABOO recorded 19,422 events with ML ≤ 3.8 corresponding to 23.36e-04 events per day per squared kilometres; one of the highest seismicity rate value observed in Italy. Seismicity distribution images the geometry of the ATF and its antithetic/synthetic structures located in the hanging-wall. TABOO can allow us to understand the seismogenic potential of the ATF and therefore contribute to the seismic hazard assessment of the area. The collected information on the geometry and deformation style of the fault will be used to elaborate ground shaking scenarios adopting diverse slip distributions and rupture directivity models.

  5. Reproduction of Daphnia pulex in a Northern Italy pond

    Valeria Rossi


    Full Text Available This paper reports on the occurrence of Daphnia pulex in a small fishless water body of Northern Italy (Bodrio del pastore III and describes its population dynamics. Bodrio is a typical water body originated by erosion from the old Po river-bed surface. During a three year study (2011-2013, D. pulex population showed an increase in density from spring to early summer, it declined in July-August and did not recover, presumably from ephippia, until the following spring. The seasonal dynamics was related to the species thermal tolerance and to invertebrate predation by Chaoborus that resulted in juvenile high mortality and in adaptive predator-avoidance cyclomorphosis. Seasonal variation was observed in the frequency of individuals, most juveniles, showing neckteeth. D. pulex population reproduces by cyclical parthenogenesis and showed a very early investment in sexual reproduction, independent of population density. Males and ephippial females appeared at the beginning of growth season before the density peak according to a typical feature of Daphnia populations from temporary habitats. This suggests a lower influence of the environmental factors on sex determination compared to populations inhabiting more permanent habitats. Lineages that produce males and ephippial females early in the season had lower growth rate than parthenogenetic ones but may preserve from selection pressure by predators a significant percentage of genetic variation linked to sex allocation so that evolution proceeds toward earlier and increased sexual reproduction. Our results suggest further investigation to verify whether the current population is the last remnant of a once much larger metapopulation eventually reduced by anthropogenic disturbances or if it represents the invasion of North American strains.

  6. Reflection seismic imaging of shallow aquifers in Milano (northern Italy)

    Francese, R.; Zaja, A.; Giudici, M.; Schmitt, D.


    A high resolution P-wave seismic reflection survey was conducted in the Lambro park within the city of Milano (northern Italy). The objective of the survey was to image structure and stratigraphy of shallow late tertiary and quaternary deposits. This information is necessary to develop a comprehensive 3D hydrological model of the fresh water aquifers where the municipality drilled several production wells. The expected complexity of the acoustic framework and the urban environment with its complications created a challenging test site for the reflection technique. The aquifer system was targeted with a 2-D high resolution seismic reflection survey to outline its vertical and lateral dimensions to a depth of 150-200 m and to estimate some petrophysical properties of the depositional units. A 0.8-km CMP seismic line, with 1-m station spacing, was deployed to collect reflection data. The recording geometry was a 240-channel split spread array, with 6-m shot separation, resulting in a maximum of 20-fold dataset. A single 40-Hz geophone at each station location detected the incoming signals. Field records exhibit clear reflections although the signal to noise ratio is poor because of strong surface waves and severe disturbances from the nearby highway. Optimized FK and KL transforms were used to attenuate these coherent noises and to enhance the primary reflections from the main horizons. The data analysis was also assisted by forward modeling to guide the selection of the processing parameters. The seismic data have a good correlation thourhgout the section and most of the acoustic units show flat bedding. The boundaries of the three major depositional units are clearly resolved by the seismic images. The stacked section clearly indicates that reflection technique provides a powerful method to characterize aquifers, even in a very noisy environment like the urban areas.

  7. Identification of dangerous fibers: some examples in Northern Italy

    Zanetti, Giovanna; Marini, Paola; Giorgis, Ilaria


    The presence of asbestiform minerals has to be foreseen in the planning of infrastructural activities: Asbestos can be a component of sedimentary rocks or of mafic and ultra mafic metamorphic rocks. Surveys and core drilling, in addition to providing important information on the quality of the rock and its geotechnical characteristics, allow for a prediction of the presence of asbestiform minerals in the areas affected by mining or infrastructural activities. During the excavation, workers can be exposed to the asbestos risk, therefore, the control of the air quality and of the excavated materials are fundamental for the safety of involved people. In this work some problems we met in the analysis of airborne filters and bulk samples from sites in northern Italy are presented. The asbestos fibers present in rocks as accessory minerals, are often different in habit and dimension from the well-known asbestos fibers used as industrial minerals and moreover can be erroneously identified as minerals morphologically and chemically similar present in the same rock or environment. In the case of tunnel muck it could be contaminated by substances used for the excavation that could modify colours and optical properties of asbestos minerals. In the PCOM (Phase Contrast Optical Microscope) analysis chrysotile, sepiolite and antigorite, due to their different refraction index, when the fibers have dimension > 0,5 micron and aren't contaminated by lubricant can be easely identified even if the morphology of chrysotile is very similar to that of sepiolite. In Electron Scanning Microscope (SEM) the discrimination between chrysotile and antigorite on the airborne filters is not always possible because the fibers of thin dimensions show similar habit and spectrum. In the case of the tremolite amphibole, morphology changes from prismatic to fibrous depending on its origin ( Monastero, Val Grana, Verrayes, Brachiello). Both prismatic and asbestiform tremolite (Gamble and Gibbs

  8. Soapstones from the Ossola Valley (Piedmont, northern Italy)

    Cavallo, Alessandro


    The term "soapstones" is referred to "soft", easily workable stones (talc and/or chlorite-rich metamorphic rocks, deriving from mafic - ultramafic protoliths), typically used for jars, pots and pipes. The term has been also improperly extended to "harder" varieties (e.g. serpentinites), mostly suitable for roof slabs and millstones. These rocks are characterized by easy workability and fire-resistance, and they had a remarkable historical, artistic and archaeological importance. In the Ossola region (Piedmont, northern Italy), the soapstones are traditionally known as "Pietra Laugera", "Pietra Lavizzaria" or "Pietra Ollare", and represent one of the oldest stony raw materials used since the Bronze Age (archaeological find in the Toceno surroundings, Vigezzo Valley). The discovery of archaeological handmade objects in the surroundings of the Ossola Valley testifies a massive use of green stones during the I century A.D., even for cinerary urns and grave outfits. A lot of two handles pots and milk vessels date back to the Middle Ages, as well as millstones and water pipes. Artistic and ornamental uses are documented in churches and civil buildings: for example, columns, capitals, pilasters and bas-reliefs (Sacro Monte del Calvario chapels, now UNESCO heritage, and the Collegiale Church in Domodossola) as well as fireplaces (e.g. Silva Palace in Domodossola), sculptures, ornaments and balustrades. The productivity reached the top in the XIX century and stopped in the twenties; nowadays the extraction occurs only in the Loana Valley, with a very limited production. The historical soapstones derive both from ophiolitic complexes (Antrona and Zermatt-Saas Zones) and from the ultramafic complexes within the Orselina-Moncucco-Isorno Zone, Monte Leone nappe and Sesia-Lanzo Zone. The historical quarries are usually small (even erratic boulders), and scattered over many lateral valleys, such as Brevettola, Antrona, Bognanco and Loana. A total of 52 representative samples were

  9. Stratigraphical and micropaleontological data on the tertiary of Southern Piemont (Northern Italy)

    Vervloet, C.C.


    During the years 1959-1963 stratigraphical investigations were carried out in Southern Piemont (Northern Italy) along five traverses, taken at right angles to the strike of the strata, which range in age from Eocene to Pliocene. These sections are important in that they include the rype sections of

  10. Present-day 3D structural model of the Po Valley basin, Northern Italy

    Turrini, C.; Lacombe, O.; Roure, F.


    A 3D structural model of the Po Valley basin (Northern Italy) was built by integrating the dataset available from the public domain (DEM, wells, isobath-maps, cross-sections, outcrop-trends).The model shows the complex foredeep-foreland architecture across the basin, from the Moho level to the topog

  11. Present-day 3D structural model of the Po Valley basin, Northern Italy

    Turrini, C.; Lacombe, O.; Roure, F.


    A 3D structural model of the Po Valley basin (Northern Italy) was built by integrating the dataset available from the public domain (DEM, wells, isobath-maps, cross-sections, outcrop-trends).The model shows the complex foredeep-foreland architecture across the basin, from the Moho level to the

  12. The impact of education on wage determination between workers in southern and central-northern Italy

    Agovino Massimiliano


    Full Text Available The aim of this paper is to examine the earnings dynamic in Italy, in order to explain earnings differences between southern Italy and centralnorthern Italy. In our analysis we use different techniques: ordinary least squares (OLS, quantile regression models and the algorithm developed by Machado and Mata (2005. In particular, the Machado and Mata (2005 algorithm allows us to examine the relative importance of both differences in workers’ characteristics and in their returns in explaining southern, central and northern Italy earnings differences at a point in time, as well as across time within each macro-area. We focus on the role of differences in educational endowment and returns to education, one of the most important components of human capital in the stylised literature. The level of education determines the substantial disparities in terms of wage returns. However, this holds only for levels of education related to compulsory education.

  13. The "green stones" of Valtellina and Valchiavenna (central Alps, northern Italy)

    Cavallo, Alessandro


    Valtellina and Val Chiavenna (Sondrio, Central Alps, northern Italy) are traditionally areas of production of building and ornamental stones (e.g. Serizzo Ghiandone, Serizzo Valmasino, San Fedelino Granite), and among these the "green stones" have a leading position. These stones had an extensive use in Lombardy, as well as abroad (e.g Switzerland). The "green stones" are related to the two mafic-ultramafic bodies of Valmalenco and Chiavenna, where the two largest quarrying districts of the Province of Sondrio are located. Until the early decades of the XX century, serpentinites (and other lithologies from Valtellina) were also extracted from the erratic boulders of Brianza (north of Milan), but at present time the law protects the few remaining boulders. The extracted and processed materials are various: serpentinites, ophicalcites, soapstones. Even the "Stone of Tresivio", used in the past in important monuments of Valtellina, could be classified among the "green stones" in a broad sense: it is a green chloritic schist with scarce and thin ferriferous calcitic veins, pertaining to the sedimentary "Servino" Formation. In recent times, the ancient quarries of this stone were rediscovered near the homonymous village, a few kilometers from Sondrio. There are also historic reports about other "green stones", used in ancient times, such as the "Stone of Grosio", a chloritic schist, and the "Bormio Prasinite". Currently the extraction and processing of "green stones" occurs mostly in Valmalenco, with 22 active serpentinite quarries and a gross volume of 70000 m3 extracted per year, with a yield of about 50%. The Malenco serpentinite (interpreted as sub-continental mantle rocks) forms a 1-2 km thick tabular body, outcropping over an area of about 170 km2, almost entirely confined within the boundaries of the valley. The antigoritic serpentinites (with variable amounts of olivine, clinopyroxene, chlorite and magnetite) are moderately up to strongly foliated, sometimes

  14. Geo-archaeological aspects of the Modena plain (Northern Italy

    Doriano Castaldini


    Full Text Available This paper traces the various stages of geomorphological evolution of the plain area around Modena from the VIth millennium B.C.E. (Neolithic to the Present, through a reconstruction of the ancient landscape and human settlements.By means of a GIS platform, geomorphological investigations led to the implementation of a Microrelief Map, a Digital Elevation Model (DEM, a Map of Surface Deposits and a Geomorphological Map.The most striking altimetric features in the study area are the morphological changes of the Rivers Secchia and Panaro: south of Modena they run deep in the alluvial plain whereas north of the town they flow elevated over the plain. The surface lithology consists mainly of silt, with bands of sand and clay; mainly gravel deposits crop out only near southern tracks of the main Apennine watercourses. The geomorphological landscape is mainly characterised by alluvial fans, fluvial ridges paleo-riverbeds fluvial scarps, natural springs and some depressed areas; worth of note are also forms connected with human activity.There have been several attempts to cross–date geological and geomorphological evidence with archaeological data, on both detailed and wide territorial scales. A further advancement can now be attempted by comparing data obtained from systematic research on fluvial forms with data contained in the archives.In the area studied, some 800 archaeological sites were identified and catalogued. Such a high number of archaeological sites can give a great deal more information than is found in any other place in northern Italy.The research took into account the overlapping of archaeological and geomorphological data, with the implementation into a GIS (ArcGis 8.3 of geoarchaeological maps divided in main periods and here represented from the Neolithic to the to Iron Age and from Roman period to the Early Middle Ages. The dating thus obtained for fluvial forms was mainly based on the relationship between these forms and

  15. Distribution of radionuclides in the environment in Northern Italy after the Chernobyl accident

    Berzero, A. (Pavia Univ. (Italy). Lab. Energia Nucleare Applicata); Borroni, P.A.; Oddone, M. (Pavia Univ. (Italy). Dip. di Chimica Generale); Crespi, V.C.; Genova, N.; Meloni, S. (Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Pavia (Italy). Centro di Radiochimica ed Analisi per Attivazione)


    Soon after the Chernobyl nuclear accident, the air-pumping stations in Pavia (northern Italy) were alerted. In a few days, a rapid increase in radionuclide concentration in air particulates was observed. Consequently, an environmental radioactivity monitoring programme was started in which several matrices such as soil, grass, vegetables and cows' milk were subjected to direct gamma-ray spectrometry. The radioactivity distribution and its variation with time is presented, discussed and compared with other available data. Detection limits, precision and accuracy are also reported, and depth profiles in soils for {sup 137}Cs are presented and correlated with soil quality parameters. A survey of environmental radioactivity in soil, in a search for residual Chernobyl fallout, was carried out and a map of the {sup 137}Cs distribution over a large area in northern Italy is presented and discussed. (author).

  16. Records of Chrysomya albiceps in Northern Italy: an ecological and forensic perspective

    S Vanin


    Full Text Available Knowledge of the carrion-breeding insects present at a local level is important and necessary for defining the post-mortem interval. Climate changes and globalisation are affecting species ranges and population dynamics. In this note, we report the incidence of Chrysomya albiceps (Diptera: Calliphoridae on dead human bodies and carrion in Northern Italy. These data confirm the spread of this species in the Northern regions. The partial sequencing of a 583-bp region of the cytochrome oxidase subunit 1 gene of an Adriatic population did not reveal any difference compared to the same genomic region in the African and South American populations of this species.

  17. Carbon dioxide degassing from Tuscany and Northern Latium (Italy)

    Frondini, Francesco; Caliro, Stefano; Cardellini, Carlo; Chiodini, Giovanni; Morgantini, Nicola; Parello, Franco


    The CO 2 degassing process from a large area on the Tyrrhenian side of central Italy, probably related to the input into the upper crust of mantle fluids, was investigated in detail through the geochemical study of gas emissions and groundwater. Mass-balance calculations and carbon isotopes show that over 50% of the inorganic carbon in regional groundwater is derived from a deep source highlighting gas-liquid separation processes at depth. The deep carbonate-evaporite regional aquifer acts as the main CO 2 reservoir and when total pressure of the reservoir fluid exceeds hydrostatic pressure, a free gas phase separates from the parent liquid and escapes toward the surface generating gas emissions which characterise the study area. The distribution of the CO 2 flux anomalies and the location of high PCO 2 springs and gas emissions suggest that the storage and the expulsion of the CO 2 toward the atmosphere are controlled by the geological and structural setting of the shallow crust. The average CO 2 flux and the total amount of CO 2 discharged by the study area were computed using surface heat flow, enthalpy and CO 2 molality of the liquid phase circulating in the deep carbonate-evaporite aquifer. The results show that the CO 2 flux varies from 1 × 10 4 mol y - 1 km - 2 to 5 × 10 7 mol y - 1 km - 2 , with an average value of 4.8 × 10 6 mol y - 1 km - 2 , about five times higher than the value of 1 × 10 6 mol y - 1 derived by Kerrick et al. [Kerrick, D.M., McKibben, M.A., Seward, T.M., Caldeira, K., 1995. Convective hydrothermal CO 2 emission from high heat flow regions. Chem. Geol. 121, 285-293] as baseline for terrestrial CO 2 emissions. The total CO 2 discharged from the study area is 0.9 × 10 11 mol y - 1 , confirming that Earth degassing from Tyrrhenian central Italy is a globally relevant carbon source.



    Noriaster barberoi gen. et. sp. n. is based on a single specimen from the Calcare di Zorzino (Norian, Triassic) of northern Italy. A member of the surviving Poraniidae (Valvatida; Echinodermata), N. barberoi is the oldest-known species assignable to a Jurassic and younger family and the first such species known from the Triassic. No Paleozoic species with close affinities with crown-group families has been recognized. Noriaster and the slightly older Triassic genus Trichasteropsis from the Mu...

  19. Thunderstorm nowcasting by means of lightning and radar data: algorithms and applications in northern Italy

    P. Bonelli; P. Marcacci


    Thunderstorms and their ground effects, such as flash floods, hail, lightning, strong winds, and tornadoes, are responsible for most weather damages in northern Italy, especially in the warm season from May to September. A nowcasting and warning system focused on severe thunderstorm events would be useful to reduce risks for people involved in outside activities and for electric, telecommunication, and sensitive industrial business. C-band radar and Lighting Location Systems provide useful, f...

  20. Thunderstorm nowcasting by means of lightning and radar data: algorithms and applications in northern Italy

    Bonelli, P.; Marcacci, P.


    Thunderstorms and their ground effects, such as flash floods, hail, lightning, strong winds, and tornadoes, are responsible for most weather damages in northern Italy, especially in the warm season from May to September. A nowcasting and warning system focused on severe thunderstorm events would be useful to reduce risks for people involved in outside activities and for electric, telecommunication, and sensitive industrial business. C-band radar and Lighting Location Systems provide useful, fast and high resolution data for the detection of convective systems and for following their dynamics. The whole of northern Italy is covered by radar with a resolution of 1 km and by a lightning network with a mean accuracy of 0.5 km on the single point of impact. The authors present an algorithm developed for tracking high intensity storm cells by means of radar and lightning data. Application to northern Italy reveals that tracking thunderstorm cells can be used as an alert system that may help prevent damages from extreme weather, as well as allowing for studying the correlation among lightning, rainfall and tornado occurrence. Assessing the algorithm skill is also discussed, and a forecast verification method is described and applied for the duration of a thunderstorm season.

  1. Thunderstorm nowcasting by means of lightning and radar data: algorithms and applications in northern Italy

    P. Bonelli


    Full Text Available Thunderstorms and their ground effects, such as flash floods, hail, lightning, strong winds, and tornadoes, are responsible for most weather damages in northern Italy, especially in the warm season from May to September. A nowcasting and warning system focused on severe thunderstorm events would be useful to reduce risks for people involved in outside activities and for electric, telecommunication, and sensitive industrial business. C-band radar and Lighting Location Systems provide useful, fast and high resolution data for the detection of convective systems and for following their dynamics. The whole of northern Italy is covered by radar with a resolution of 1 km and by a lightning network with a mean accuracy of 0.5 km on the single point of impact. The authors present an algorithm developed for tracking high intensity storm cells by means of radar and lightning data. Application to northern Italy reveals that tracking thunderstorm cells can be used as an alert system that may help prevent damages from extreme weather, as well as allowing for studying the correlation among lightning, rainfall and tornado occurrence. Assessing the algorithm skill is also discussed, and a forecast verification method is described and applied for the duration of a thunderstorm season.

  2. 2-D Coda and Direct Wave Attenuation Tomography in Northern Italy

    Morasca, P; Mayeda, K; Gok, R; Phillips, W S; Malagnini, L


    A 1-D coda method was proposed by Mayeda et al. (2003) in order to obtain stable seismic source moment-rate spectra using narrowband coda envelope measurements. That study took advantage of the averaging nature of coda waves to derive stable amplitude measurements taking into account all propagation, site, and Sto-coda transfer function effects. Recently this methodology was applied to micro earthquake data sets from three sub-regions of northern Italy (i.e., western Alps, northern Apennines and eastern Alps). Since the study regions were small, ranging between local-to-near-regional distances, the simple 1-D path assumptions used in the coda method worked very well. The lateral complexity of this region would suggest, however, that a 2-D path correction might provide even better results if the datasets were combined, especially when paths traverse larger distances and complicated regions. The structural heterogeneity of northern Italy makes the region ideal to test the extent to which coda variance can be reduced further by using a 2-D Q tomography technique. The approach we use has been developed by Phillips et al. (2005) and is an extension of previous amplitude ratio techniques to remove source effects from the inversion. The method requires some assumptions such as isotropic source radiation which is generally true for coda waves. Our results are compared against direct Swave inversions for 1/Q and results from both share very similar attenuation features that coincide with known geologic structures. We compare our results with those derived from direct waves as well as some recent results from northern California obtained by Mayeda et al. (2005) which tested the same tomographic methodology applied in this study to invert for 1/Q. We find that 2-D coda path corrections for this region significantly improve upon the 1-D corrections, in contrast to California where only a marginal improvement was observed. We attribute this difference to stronger lateral

  3. RAIS: a real time strong-motion network in northern Italy

    Simone Marzorati


    Full Text Available When compared to more seismically active regions, damaging earthquakes occur only occasionally in the central part of northern Italy. Nevertheless, the lack of a dense strong-motion network in this area was highlighted by the occurrence of the November 24, 2004, ML 5.2, Salò earthquake. In 2006, the Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia (INGV section of Milano-Pavia began the installation of new strong-motion stations in central-northern Italy. At present, the Strong-Motion Network of Northern Italy (RAIS; Rete Accelerometrica Italia Settentrionale includes 22 stations with an average inter-distance of about 20 km. All of the stations are equipped with Kinemetrics Episensor FBA ES-T sensors coupled with 24-bit digital recorders. Starting from 2009, 14 strong-motion stations have been sending data to the INGV acquisition center in Milan, in real time using TCP/IP over wi-fi links. Another eight stations still work in dial-up mode and send data through GSM modems. The real-time connections allow the use of strong-motion data recorded by RAIS for the generation of shake maps for Italy, the implementation of which represents one of the main tasks of the last agreement between INGV and the Italian Civil Protection Department. The RAIS data is stored directly at the INGV section of Milano-Pavia, which was realized using the MiniSEED format: the data management and exchange are carried out by the SeisComP package with the SeedLink protocol. Metadata dissemination is achieved through the website, where the strong-motion parameters related to each recorded and processed waveform are made available.

  4. The "Mud-volcanoes route" (Emilia Apennines, northern Italy)

    Coratza, Paola; Castaldini, Doriano


    In the present paper the "Mud-volcanoes route" (MVR), an itinerary unfolds across the districts of Viano, Sassuolo, Fiorano Modenese and Maranello, in which part of the Emilia mud volcanoes fields are located, is presented. The Mud-volanoes route represents an emotional journey that connects places and excellences through the geological phenomenon of mud volcanoes, known with the local name "Salse". The Mud Volcanoes are created by the surfacing of salt water and mud mixed with gaseous and liquid hydrocarbons along faults and fractures of the ground. The name "Salsa"- from Latin salsus - results from the"salt" content of these muddy waters, ancient heritage of the sea that about a million years ago was occupying the current Po Plain. The "Salse" may take the shape of a cone or a level-pool according to the density of the mud. The Salse of Nirano, in the district of Fiorano Modenese, is one of the most important in Italy and among the most complex in Europe. Less extensive but equally charming and spectacular, are the "Salse" located in the districts of Maranello (locality Puianello), Sassuolo (locality Montegibbio) and Viano (locality Casola Querciola and Regnano). These fascinating lunar landscapes have always attracted the interest of researchers and tourist.The presence on the MVR territory of ancient settlements, Roman furnaces and mansions, fortification systems and castles, besides historic and rural buildings, proves the lasting bond between this land and its men. In these places, where the culture of good food has become a resource, we can find wine cellars, dairy farms and Balsamic vinegar factories that enable us to appreciate unique worldwide products. This land gave also birth to some personalities who created unique worldwide famous values, such as the myth of the Ferrrari, the ceramic industry and the mechatronics. The MVR is represented in a leaflet containing, short explanation, photos and a map in which are located areas with mud volcanoes, castles

  5. Oestrus ovis L. (Diptera: Oestridae Induced Nasal Myiasis in a Dog from Northern Italy

    Sergio A. Zanzani


    Full Text Available A companion dog from Milan province (northern Italy, presenting with frequent and violent sneezing, underwent rhinoscopy, laryngoscopy, and tracheoscopy procedures. During rhinoscopy, a dipteran larva was isolated from the dog and identified as first instar larval stage of O. ovis by morphological features. Reports of O. ovis in domestic carnivores are sporadic and nevertheless this infestion should be considered as a possible differential diagnosis of rhinitis in domestic carnivores living in contaminated areas by the fly as consequence of the presence of sheep and goats. This report described a case of autochthonous infestion in a dog from an area where O. ovis was not historically present but it could be affected by a possible expansion of the fly as a consequence of climate change. This is the first record of Oestrus ovis infestion in a dog in Italy and, at the same time, the most northerly finding of larvae of sheep bot fly in the country.

  6. Energy balance of five fodder cropping systems in the irrigated lowlands of Northern Italy

    Cesare Tomasoni


    Full Text Available Extensification has recently become an important option in Western European agriculture, driven both by economic considerations (product surpluses together with the fact that developed countries cropping systems have been heavily relying on fossil energy and growing public concern on the possible adverse effects of intensive farming on the environment and human health. The adoption of rational fodder crop rotations, with the rediscovery of the beneficial effect of the meadow, is viewed as a possible mean to reduce the impact of farming systems in the lowlands of Northern Italy, characterised by highly intensive cropping and animal husbandry. For this reason our study examines the effects of crop rotation on the energy balance during 1985-2007 period in a long-term crop rotation trial in Northern Italy comparing five fodder crop systems, different in the degree of crop intensification and for the presence or absence of the meadow: a 1-year continuous cereal double cropping (R1; a 3-year rotation (R3; a 6-year rotation (R6; a permanent meadow (PM; and a continuous grain maize cropping (CM. Each rotation was subjected to two input treatments, defined as high (mostly used in lowlands of northern Italy and low (input reduction of ca. 30% respectively, in terms of nutrient levels, herbicide doses, and soil tillage methods. The crop rotations exerted a marked influence on the energy balance. The most efficient rotations in terms of net energy production energy efficiency have been characterized by reduced length and presence of maize and catch-crops.

  7. Crustal structure of northern Italy from the ellipticity of Rayleigh waves

    Berbellini, Andrea; Morelli, Andrea; Ferreira, Ana M. G.


    Northern Italy is a diverse geological region, including the wide and thick Po Plain sedimentary basin, which is bounded by the Alps and the Apennines. The seismically slow shallow structure of the Po Plain is difficult to retrieve with classical seismic measurements such as surface wave dispersion, yet the detailed structure of the region greatly affects seismic wave propagation and hence seismic ground shaking. Here we invert Rayleigh wave ellipticity measurements in the period range 10-60 s for 95 stations in northern Italy using a fully non linear approach to constrain vertical vS,vP and density profiles of the crust beneath each station. The ellipticity of Rayleigh wave ground motion is primarily sensitive to shear-wave velocity beneath the recording station, which reduces along-path contamination effects. We use the 3D layering structure in MAMBo, a previous model based on a compilation of geological and geophysical information for the Po Plain and surrounding regions of northern Italy, and employ ellipticity data to constrain vS,vP and density within its layers. We show that ellipticity data from ballistic teleseismic wave trains alone constrain the crustal structure well. This leads to MAMBo-E, an updated seismic model of the region's crust that inherits information available from previous seismic prospection and geological studies, while fitting new seismic data well. MAMBo-E brings new insights into lateral heterogeneity in the region's subsurface. Compared to MAMBo, it shows overall faster seismic anomalies in the region's Quaternary, Pliocene and Oligo-Miocene layers and better delineates the seismic structures of the Po Plain at depth. Two low velocity regions are mapped in the Mesozoic layer in the western and eastern parts of the Plain, which seem to correspond to the Monferrato sedimentary basin and to the Ferrara-Romagna thrust system, respectively.

  8. Reticulitermes urbis in Bagnacavallo (Ravenna, Northern Italy: a 15-year experience in termite control

    Roberto Ferrari


    Full Text Available We relate and discuss the application of a monitoring-baiting program with the IGR hexaflumuron to termite control in Bagnacavallo (Ravenna, Northern Italy, where a massive Reticulitermes urbis infestation existed in the old town. Termite control was carried out in different zones over a period of 15 years, starting from the centre of the infested area and extending towards the peripheral areas. The treatment succeeded in eliminating termites from Bagnacavallo old town, using a total of 63 g of hexaflumuron.

  9. Upper Triassic (Norian-Rhaetian new thalamid sponges from northern Calabria (southern Italy

    Baba Senowbari-Daryan


    Full Text Available Two new “sphinctozoan” sponges, Calabrisiphonella labyrinthica nov. gen., nov. sp. and Calabrispongia globosa nov. gen., nov. sp., are described from reef boulders derived from Triassic dolomites (“Dolomia principale“ of the Argentino valley in Northern Calabria (Southern Italy. Calabrisiphonella is an Amblysiphonella-type sponge characterized by having a complicated canal system (labyrinth-like within the chamber walls. The structure of Calabrispongia is similar to some Paleozoic or Jurassic "Stromatoporoidea“, which are attributed to the sponges. The systemtic position of both sponges, described here, is discussed. The age of the sponge-bearing reefs represented in the boulders is Norian-Rhaetian.

  10. Genotypic characteristics of bovine viral diarrhea virus 2 strains isolated in northern Italy.

    Giangaspero, M; Harasawa, R; Zecconi, A; Luzzago, C


    Two strains of Bovine viral diarrhea virus 2 (BVDV-2) were isolated from calves in northern Italy. Variations in the 5'-untranslated region (UTR) of the genome were studied by primary structure alignment and neighbor-joining method based phylogenetic tree analyses and by palindromic nucleotide substitutions at the three variable loci in the 5'-UTR. Genetic analysis indicated their appurtenance to genovar BVDV-2a. Nucleotide sequence at the 5'-UTR of strain BS-95-II, one of the Italian isolates from healthy calves, showed 98% homology to that of the Japanese isolate OY89, a cytopathic strain derived from cattle with mucosal disease.

  11. A new record of Craspedacusta sowerbii, Lankester 1880 (Cnidaria, Limnomedusae in Northern Italy

    Alessandro MARIENI


    Full Text Available A new record of the freshwater jellyfish Craspedacusta sowerbii in Northern Italy is reported. The medusae bloom occurred in a small oligo-mesotrophic artificial lake during July, 2009. At the time of sampling, the medusae were all immature, reached low density and showed feeding preference towards the Daphnia complex of species, the most abundant zooplanktonic species in the lake. Negative feeding selectivity towards small Rotifera was demonstrated. The occasional occurrence of a C. sowerbii bloom in this lake suggests the distribution range of this species may be largely underestimated, and its potential impact on the zooplankton community remains unknown.

  12. The environment in the provincial plan of Cremona, Italy.

    Magoni, M; Steiner, F


    Recent Italian laws mandate the consideration of environmental factors in local plans, especially at the provincial level of government. The plan for the province of Cremona in northern Italy illustrates the integration of the environment in provincial-level planning. The Cremona plan was developed through an ecological planning approach that occurred from 1994 to 1998. As part of this process, the planning team designed an environmental sustainability index. This index was integrated with an environmental capability analysis. To improve the quality of the Cremona landscape, the planning team developed an ecological network. This network seeks to weave together the natural areas of the province, especially by connecting provincial parks to regional river parks throughout Lombardy. The experience of the Cremona provincial plan has implications for environmental management elsewhere in Italy, Europe, and abroad.

  13. Detection of a new insect flavivirus and isolation of Aedes flavivirus in Northern Italy

    Roiz David


    Full Text Available Abstract Background During recent years, numerous novel ‘insect flaviviruses’ have been discovered in natural mosquito populations. In a previous study we described the presence of flavivirus DNA sequences integrated in Aedes albopictus (Asian tiger mosquito populations from Northern Italy in 2007. Methods During 2008 we collected and tested Aedes females for flavivirus presence and developed phylogenetic analysis, virus isolation, electron microscopy studies and RNAse treatments. Results We detected a high prevalence of flavivirus in Ae. albopictus (77.5%. The phylogenetic analysis identified the insect flavivirus sequences as Aedes flavivirus (AEFV recently described in Japan, and that may have been introduced in Italy travelling with the tiger mosquito. Some of these pools grew in C6/36 cells, producing cytopathic effects, and the RNase treatment results showed the presence of the detected sequences in RNA forms. Furthermore, we detected a new insect flavivirus in one pool of Aedes cinereus/geminus mosquitoes. Phylogenetic analysis of this virus shows that it forms a distinct cluster within the clade of insect flavivirus. Conclusions This is the first study to report a high prevalence, to describe the seasonal activity and an isolation of the insect flavivirus Aedes flavivirus in Europe. Moreover we describe the detection of a new insect flavivirus detected from Ae. cinereus mosquitoes from Italy. These flavivirus may be common, ubiquitous and diverse in nature and we discuss the implications of the insect flavivirus group in virus evolution and transmission.

  14. Characterization of necrophagus entomofauna in a typical agricultural area in Emilia-Romagna region (Northern Italy

    M. Calzolari


    Full Text Available This study presents a checklist of Dipterans and Coleopterans accountable for carrion decay in the Po Valley (Italy, a contribution to the Forensic Entomology knowledge in Italy. Insects colonizing two pig carcasses in an agricultural area in Mezzani municipality (Parma, Northern Italy were sampled by pitfall traps and original Malaise-like traps, which allowed the sampling of a very relevant number of flying insects. A checklist of 57 taxa was obtained, of which 26 were considered of forensic importance. For the latter the arrival time of adult specimens on the carcasses was recorded, as an important parameter in minimum post mortem interval estimation. Dipterans (6141 specimens were the most common insects; the fastest specimens to detect and colonize the carcass belonged to the Calliphoridae family, while Fanniidae and Muscidae infested the carrion until completion of the skeletal stage. Coleopterans appeared later (308 adult specimens and 114 larvae were captured. Staphylinidae, Dermestidae, and Histeridae were the most common coleopterans sampled in this study.

  15. Anaplasma phagocytophilum in ticks from parks in the Emilia-Romagna region of northern Italy

    Sara Aureli


    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to assess the prevalence and phylogenetic characterisation of Anaplasma phagocytophilum in ticks in three parks of the Emilia-Romagna region of northern Italy, an area in which no survey of this agent had previously been conducted. A total of 360 tick samples were analysed; 292 were sourced from the environment and 68 from animals and humans. Real-time polymerase chain reaction revealed that 33 tick samples (9.2% were positive for A. phagocytophilum. Ixodes ricinus was the only species found positive from the samples retrieved from the environment and was the most commonly infected among ticks removed from hosts. Sequence analysis of the 23S-5S rRNA gene performed on 23 samples revealed six variant sequences that differed by only a few nucleotides when compared to the GenBank sequences from humans, horse and small mammals. Msp4 gene sequences obtained from 7 samples were compared to those described in ruminants, especially roe deer (Capreolus capreolus and goat isolates from different countries. The results of this study provided evidence of the circulation of A. phagocytophilum in the sites studied and indicated the possible involvement of wild ruminants. Additional studies that extend the sampling areas, or cover different sites, would contribute to a better understanding of the ecology and disease dynamics of A. phagocytophilum in northern Italy and would provide valuable information on zoonotic risks.

  16. Survey of Campylobacter spp. in owned and unowned dogs and cats in Northern Italy.

    Giacomelli, M; Follador, N; Coppola, L M; Martini, M; Piccirillo, A


    Campylobacteriosis is among the most common bacterial causes of human gastroenteritis worldwide and pet ownership has been identified as a risk factor for Campylobacter infection in humans. Since canine and feline prevalence data are scarce in Italy, the present study was carried out to assess the prevalence, species distribution and risk factors for Campylobacter infection in dogs and cats under different husbandry conditions. Rectal swabs were collected from 171 dogs (household pets, n = 100; shelter-housed dogs, n = 50; dogs from breeding kennels, n = 21) and 102 cats (household pets, n = 52; shelter-housed cats, n = 21; free-roaming cats n = 29) in Northern Italy. Campylobacter was isolated from 17% (n = 29) of dogs and 14.7% (n = 15) of cats. C. jejuni was the most common isolate in both species (Campylobacter spp.-positive dogs, 55.2%; Campylobacter spp.-positive cats, 53.3%), followed by C. upsaliensis (Campylobacter spp.-positive dogs, 27.6%; Campylobacter spp.-positive cats, 40%). Other Campylobacter species were rarely detected, but included C. hyointestinalis subsp. hyointestinalis, C. lari and C. coli in dogs and C. coli and C. helveticus in cats. Among considered variables (sex, age, origin, diarrhoea, season of sampling), origin was identified as a risk factor for dogs, with shelter-housed dogs at higher risk than household dogs (odds ratio, 2.84; 95% CI 1.17, 6.92; P = 0.021). The results of this study, particularly the high prevalence of C. jejuni in Campylobacter-positive animals, demonstrated that household and stray dogs and cats in Northern Italy might pose a zoonotic risk for humans. Moreover, biosecurity measures should be improved in dog shelters. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Assessment of Temporal and spatial variability of soil hydraulic properties and its implications on soil water content predictions for a maize field in Northern Italy

    Feki, Mouna; Ravazzani, Giovanni; Ceppi, Alessandro; Mancini, Marco


    Use of hydrological models to simulate water movement from soil surface to groundwater requires intensive, time consuming and expensive soil related parameters collection, such as, water retention curve (WRC) parameters and hydraulic conductivity (K).Typically, soils to be characterized, , exhibit large variations in space and time as well during the cropping cycle, due to biological processes and agricultural management practices : tillage , irrigation , fertilization and harvest. Soil properties are subjected to diverse physical and chemical changes that leads to a non-stability in term of water and chemical movements within the soil as well to the groundwater. The aim of this study is to assess the variability of soil hydraulic properties dynamics over a cropping cycle. The study site is a surface irrigated Maize field (typical in this area) located in Secugnago (45°13'31.70'' N, 9°36'26.82 E), in Northern Italy-Lombardy region. The field belongs to the Consortium Muzza Bassa Lodigiana, within which meteorological data together with soil moisture were monitored during the cropping season of 2015 . To investigate soil properties variations, both measurements in the field and laboratory tests on both undisturbed and disturbed collected samples were performed. Soil samples were taken from different locations within the study area and at different depths( 0cm , 20cm and 40cm) as well at different growth stages of the plant ,after irrigation events or tillage and as well after harvest. During three measuring campaigns, for each soil samples several parameters were monitored (Organic matter , bulk density) together with soil-water related parameters (Soil water retention curve parameters , saturated hydraulic conductivity). Soil water retention curves parameters were measured following the evaporative method, using the Hyprop (Hydraulic Property Analyzer; UMS Munich, 2010). Parameters were assessed using Hyprop-fit software, by fitting data to Brooks and Corey and

  18. [Objective functional compensation in NHIL: INAIL prosthesic protocol in Lombardy, 2007-2010].

    Calcinoni, O; Polo, L


    Even if NHIL gives already right to economic compensation, our Insurance aimed to real functional compensation, to reduce handicap in everyday life. Together with Professor Giordano, Audioprosthesists' Association and Manufacturers' representatives, INAIL Medical Superintendence started in 2003 a study on this problem, involving some of his forensic physician and ENT staff; in 2007-2009 INAIL issued directives innovating and planning the rules in prosthesis provision, not only acoustical ones. In 2010 started an experimental protocol to rule hearing aid provision in all INAIL centers, throughout Italy. Authors present first results of this protocol in Lombardy, related to previous and national ones.

  19. Ellipticity of Rayleigh waves in basin and hard-rock sites in Northern Italy

    Berbellini, Andrea; Morelli, Andrea; Ferreira, Ana M. G.


    We measure ellipticity of teleseismic Rayleigh waves at 95 seismic stations in Northern Italy, for wave period between 10 and 110 s, using an automatic technique and a large volume of high-quality seismic recordings from over 500 global earthquakes that occurred in 2008-2014. Northern Italy includes a wide range of crustal structures, from the wide and deep Po Plain sedimentary basin to outcropping sedimentary and crystalline rocks in the Northern Apennines and Alps. It thus provides an excellent case for studying the influence of shallow earth structure on polarization of surface waves. The ellipticity measurements show excellent spatial correlation with geological features in the region, such as high ellipticity associated with regions of low seismic velocity in the Po Plain and low ellipticity values in faster, hard rock regions in the Alps and Apennine mountains. Moreover, the observed ellipticity values also relate to the thickness of the basement, as highlighted by observed differences beneath the Alps and the Apennines. Comparison between observations and predicted ellipticity from a reference crustal model of the region show substantial fit, particularly for T ˜ 38 s data. Discrepancy for shorter wave period suggests that slight modifications of the model are needed, and that the ellipticity measurements could help to better constrain the shallow crustal structure of the region. Predictions for the Po Plain are larger than the observations by a factor of four or more and transition from retrograde to prograde Rayleigh wave motion at the surface for periods of T ˜ 10-13 s is predicted for seismic stations in the plain. Analysis of corresponding real data indicates a possible detection of teleseismic prograde particle motion, but the weak teleseismic earthquake signals are mixed with ambient noise signals at the predicted, short, transition periods. Detection of the period of polarity inversion from the joint analysis of earthquake and ambient noise

  20. Gastrointestinal nematodes of dairy goats, anthelmintic resistance and practices of parasite control in Northern Italy


    Background Gastrointestinal nematodes (GINs) are one of the main constraints to ruminant production worldwide. Anthelmintic resistance (AR) has been reported in goats throughout Europe, yet little is known about the AR status in Italy. The aims of the study were: i) determine the frequency of AR in GINs in goat flocks in Northern Italy, Italy, ii) survey goat farmers on the current practices of parasite control, iii) update the species composition of the gastrointestinal helminthofauna. Thirty three flocks were enrolled and 1288 individual fecal samples were collected. Based on the egg per gram (EPG), 15 flocks were selected to evaluate the presence of AR in GINs with the Fecal Egg Count Reduction Test (FECRT). A questionnaire surveyed 110 dairy goat farmers to acquire information about farm management and drenching practices against GINs. Further, the gastrointestinal tracts of 42 goats were analyzed. Results The FECRs indicated that five of the 15 flocks had problems of AR, which was identified in all two of the anthelmintic classes tested. Resistance and suspected resistance was found in 40% of the flocks selected for AR testing that were treated with benzimidazoles while 20% of the flocks treated with eprinomectin had resistant GINs. Teladorsagia/Trichostrongylus L3 were isolated from the post-treatment coprocultures of all flocks with resistance but not from the flock with suspected oxfendazole resistance. Treatments against helminths were performed once annually in 73.63% of the flocks, but 20.00% of farmers declared not regularly treating their goats every year. Annual treatments usually occurred in autumn or winter at dose rate for sheep. Te. circumcincta, H. contortus, Tr. colubriformis, Skrjabinema caprae and Oesophagostomum venulosum were the most abundant and prevalent species of the gastrointestinal tract. Conclusions Strategies to prevent the development of AR should be widely adopted in Northern Italy. Further, farmers and practitioners should be

  1. Late Miocene remagnetization within the internal sector of the Northern Apennines, Italy

    Aiello, I.W.; Hagstrum, J.T.; Principi, G.


    Paleomagnetic and geologic evidence indicates that Upper Jurassic radiolarian cherts of both the Tuscan Cherts Formation (continental margin, Tuscan Units) and the Monte Alpe Cherts Formation (oceanic crust, Ligurian Units) were remagnetized during Miocene orogenesis of the Northern Apennines of Italy. Characteristic overprint magnetizations with reversed polarities have been found over a large area within the internal sector of the Northern Apennines, including eastern Liguria, Elba Island and the Thyrrenian margin, and west of the Middle Tuscan Ridge. The reversed-polarity overprint (average direction: D=177??, I=-52??, ??95=15??) was most likely acquired during Late Miocene uplift and denudation of the orogenic chain, and thermochemical remagnetization was a probable consequence of increased circulation of orogenic fluids. Similarly, mostly reversed-polarity directions of magnetization have been found by other workers in overlying post-orogenic Messinian sediments (D=177??, I=-57??, ??95=3??), which show little counterclockwise (CCW) vertical-axis rotation with respect to stable Europe (-8??5??). The Monte Alpe Cherts sampled at sites in the external sector of the Northern Apennines, close to major tectonic features, have normal- polarity overprint directions with in situ W-SW declinations. Since the overlying post-orogenic Messinian sediments have not been substantially rotated about vertical axes, the evidence points to an earlier,pre-Late Miocene remagnetization in the external parts of the orogenic chain. ?? 2004 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. A new fossil-lagerstätte from the lower eocene of lessini mountains (northern Italy): A multidisciplinary approach

    Giusberti, L.; Bannikov, A.; Boscolo Galazzo, F.; Fornaciari, E.; Frieling, J.; Luciani, V.; Papazzoni, C.A.; Roghi, G.; Schouten, S.; Sluijs, A.; Bosellini, F.R.; Zorzin, R.


    Hemipelagic dark limestones within calciturbiditic deposits at Monte Solane in the western Lessini Mountains of northern Italy yield a fish fauna dominated by stomiiforms. A minor component of the fossil assemblage is represented by a macroalgal non-calcareous flora associated with rarer terrestrial

  3. An updating of the occurrence of canine heartworm disease in northern Italy.

    Poglayen, G; Martini, M; Bomben, L; Roda, R


    A survey was carried out in northern Italy (Veneto and Friuli Venezia Giulia Regions) to assess the extension of canine heartworm disease close to the classic hyperendemic areas of the Po Valley. A filtration test on 275 privately owned dogs showed a mean prevalence of 44%, with a peak of 55% in the Venice province. A high prevalence (17%) of occult filariosis was discovered using a serological test. These values fall within the medium-high range previously reported from other Italian areas. The provinces of Pordenone, Udine, Trieste, Treviso and Belluno, where no cases had been previously reported, were found to be infected. The distribution of the infection did not differ significantly with the dogs' origin or sex. The prevalence seemed to be influenced significantly (p < 0.01) by the hosts' age, function and degree of outdoor activity, reflecting the different exposure risks.




    Full Text Available A quantitative biostratigraphical study was performed on the foraminiferal assemblages from 15 stratigraphic sections of the Epiligurian Succession (Middle Eocene-Early Miocene, Northern Apennines, Italy. This study enabled us to identify the presence of some of the standard bioevents and to note that other bioevents are absent or show a different chronostratigraphic range. Other additional bioevents, identified throughout the area, have therefore been utilised to improve the biostratigraphical resolution of the Epiligurian sediments. These bioevents include the massive extinction of the muricate species at the Bartonian/Priabonian boundary; the increasing abundance of Paragloborotalia opima opima near Subzone P21a/P21b and the Rupelian/Chattian boundaries; and the FO of Globoquadrina dehiscens at the Subzone N4a/N4b boundary. 

  5. The Middle Eocene siliceous sponges from Val di Chiampo (Lessini Mountains, northern Italy

    Ruggero Matteucci


    Full Text Available The Lower Lutetian hyaloclastites cropping out in the Val di Chiampo (Vicenza, northern Italy contain a very rich and diversified siliceous sponge fauna. In this paper we give preliminary determinations and illustrations of 23 siliceous sponge species. The most abundant are the Lychniscosa, with ten species, followed by Hexactinosa, with seven species, and Lithistida, with six species.Twelve species are in open nomenclature, five are identical or similar to species described by Pisera and Busquets (2002, from the Bartonian of the Ebro Basin (Spain, and five are compared with species described by Pomel (1872 from the Miocene of Algeria. From a paleoecological point of view, it is supposed that the sponge fauna inhabited the euphotic zone.

  6. A methodology for assessing the maximum expected radon flux from soils in northern Latium (central Italy).

    Voltaggio, Mario; Masi, Umberto; Spadoni, Massimo; Zampetti, Giorgio


    Northern Latium (Italy) is an area where the Rn risk rate is potentially high because of the extensive outcropping of Neogene U-rich volcanics and the presence of major active tectonic lineaments. The lack of data on Rn risk rates in that area, which is undergoing major urban and industrial development, has prompted this study. It proposes a methodology to evaluate the maximum potential diffusive Rn flux from soils based on the measurement of (226)Ra, (232)Th and (40)K activities by gamma-ray spectrometry, and the measurement of main soil parameters influencing the Rn emanation. This methodology provides a simple, reliable and low-cost tool for drawing up radon flux maps useful to both public planners and private individuals, who want to operate safely in the study area. The proposed methodology may also be applied to other geographic areas outside the prescribed study area.

  7. Trace-Metal Enrichment and Pollution in Coastal Sediments in the Northern Tyrrhenian Sea, Italy.

    Piazzolla, Daniele; Scanu, Sergio; Frattarelli, Francesco Manfredi; Mancini, Emanuele; Tiralongo, Francesco; Brundo, Maria Violetta; Tibullo, Daniele; Pecoraro, Roberta; Copat, Chiara; Ferrante, Margherita; Marcelli, Marco


    This study evaluated the distribution pattern and pollution of chromium, arsenic (As), manganese (Mn), nickel, lead, and copper in surface sediments along the northern Latium coast of the Tyrrhenian Sea in Italy. The enrichment factor, geoaccumulation index, and potential toxicity response index were used to evaluate the degree of contamination. These results show As and Mn contamination. The high enrichment and contamination levels of As and Mn are located in two hot spots. These elevations are due to naturally high levels of As and Mn in the Mignone River and the Marangone Stream as well as the intense human activity in the area including the largest energy production site in Europe (Torrevaldaliga Nord coal-fired power plant) and of one of the most important ports for cruise traffic in the Mediterranean Sea.

  8. Bayesian rupture imaging in a complex medium: The 29 May 2012 Emilia, Northern Italy, earthquake

    Causse, Mathieu; Cultrera, Giovanna; Moreau, Ludovic; Herrero, André; Schiappapietra, Erika; Courboulex, Françoise


    We develop a new approach to image earthquake rupture from strong motion data. We use a large data set of aftershock waveforms, interpolated over the seismic fault to obtain Green's function approximations. Next we deploy a Bayesian inversion method to characterize the slip distribution, the rupture velocity, the slip duration, and their uncertainties induced by errors in the Green's functions. The method is applied to the 29 May 2012 Mw 6 Emilia earthquake, which ruptured a fault buried below the Po Plain sediments (Northern Italy). Despite the particularly complex wave propagation, the near-field strong motion observations are well reproduced with 15 rupture parameters. The rupture and slip velocities were notably slow ( 0.5 Vs and earthquake rupture studies in areas where numerical simulations suffer from imprecise knowledge of the velocity structure.

  9. Modeling Pareto efficient PM10 control policies in Northern Italy to reduce health effects

    Pisoni, Enrico; Volta, Marialuisa

    High PM10 concentrations can cause human health problems, both related to short-term and long-term exposure to particles. In this work the impact of efficient PM10 control problems in Northern Italy is assessed by means of a two-stage methodology. In the first stage a multi-objective optimization approach is applied. The multi-objective problem defines two control objectives (the emission reduction costs and the air quality index) to be minimized varying the decision variables (precursor emission reductions). The solution of the multi-objective problem is the Pareto efficient PM10 control policies. In the second stage, the ExternE methodology is applied to estimate health impacts and external costs for the efficient emission reduction scenarios computed in the first stage. The methodology has been applied over Lombardia region, one of the most polluted areas in Europe.

  10. Impact of variations in solar activity on hydrological decadal patterns in northern Italy

    Zanchettin, D.; Rubino, A.; Traverso, P.; Tomasino, M.


    Using spectral and statistical analyses of discharges and basin average precipitation rates acquired over the Po River since the early 1800s, we investigate the impact of variations in solar activity on hydrological decadal patterns over northern Italy. Wet and dry periods appear to alternate in accordance with polarized sunspot cycles. Intriguingly, a solar signature on Po River discharges is detected to be highly significant since the late 1800s, before the onset of sunspots hyperactivity established by the middle 1900s. In particular, observed hydrological patterns over northern Italy are significantly correlated, under periods of quiet sunspot activity, with parameters characterizing the Sun's orbital motion, specifically with the time derivative of the solar angular momentum (τ) which is thought to modulate the strength of the solar wind and sunspot dynamics under weak sunspot activity. The North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) is detected as potential link between the Sun and Po River discharges, since it is significantly correlated with both solar activity and the decadal variability in the north Italian climate. In particular, positive (negative) NAO anomalies, which are associated with comparatively lower (higher) Po River discharges, are assessed to alternatively correlate at decadal timescales either with τ or with the Earth's geomagnetic activity (GA), which closely follows sunspot activity. This changing correlation seems to be regulated by the strength of sunspot activity: under periods of quiet sunspot activity, a weakening of the GA-NAO connection and a reinforcement of the τ-NAO connection is observed. In this sense, the strength of solar activity apparently modulates the connection between the NAO and Po River discharges.

  11. No signature of Y chromosomal resemblance between possible descendants of the Cimbri in Denmark and Northern Italy

    Børglum, Anders; Vernesi, Cristiano; Jensen, Peter K A


    Two European populations are believed to be related to the ancient Germanic tribe Cimbri: one living in Northern Italy, the other living in Jutland, Denmark. The people called Cimbri are documented in the ancient Roman historical record. Arriving from the far north their movements can be tracked...... from successive battles with the Romans. The Cimbri finally entered Italy from the northeast and were defeated at Vercellae (present day Vercelli) in 101 BC by Gaius Marius and his professional legions. Classical sources from the first centuries AD relate the homeland of the Cimbri to the coasts around...... the Elb estuary (northern Germany) or specifically towards the north (Himmerland in northern Jutland). In the alpine parts of Veneto, northeast of the historical battlefield, local traditions dating back to late medieval time, identify a local population as Cimbri living in Terra dei Cimbri...

  12. Awareness and knowledge about weight status and management: results from the 1 d sensitization campaign 'Obesity Day' in northern Italy.

    Barichella, Michela; Malavazos, Alexis E; Fatati, Giuseppe; Cereda, Emanuele


    To evaluate the awareness and knowledge about weight status and its management. A 1 d cross-sectional survey. Basic anthropometric assessments (weight, height, BMI and waist circumference) and a self-administered questionnaire were considered. Nineteen Clinical Nutrition or Endocrinology and Metabolic Disorders Units or Dietetics Services in the Italian region of Lombardy. All adults attending the 'Obesity Day' initiative. A total of 914 participants (605 female and 309 male) were recruited. Although most of the participants (83·5 %) considered obesity to be a disease, 38·5 % were likely to misperceive their weight status. In particular, 38·8 % of normal-weight adults believed themselves to be overweight, whereas 71·1 % and 37·5 % of classes I and II/III obese adults classified themselves as being overweight and mildly obese, respectively. However, most of the overweight (90·2 %), mildly (96·8 %) and moderately/severely obese adults (99·1 %) recognized the need to lose weight. In all, 37·8 % of the sample underestimated the role of physical activity in weight management. Interestingly, only 17·2 % of dieters (previous or current) declared being advised by their doctor to lose weight. Multivariate models revealed that higher age, low education and higher BMI were important determinants of poor weight control and management. In addition, previous dieting appeared not to provide better knowledge, whereas the role of physical activity was recognized mainly by those practising it. The present study suggests that in Italy knowledge about weight management should be improved not only in the general population but also among health-care professionals. To confirm this finding, there is now the rationale for a nationally representative survey. New educational programmes can be designed on the basis of the information collected.

  13. Daily earthquake forecasts during the May-June 2012 Emilia earthquake sequence (northern Italy

    Warner Marzocchi


    Full Text Available On May 20, 2012, at 02:03 UTC, a magnitude Ml 5.9 earthquake hit part of the Po Plain area (latitude, 44.89 ˚N; longitude, 11.23 ˚E close to the village of Finale-Emilia in the Emilia-Romagna region (northern Italy. This caused a number of human losses and significant economic damage to buildings, and to local farms and industry. This earthquake was preceded by an increase in the seismicity the day before, with the largest shock of Ml 4.1 at 23:13 UTC (latitude, 44.90 ˚N; longitude, 11.26 ˚E. It was then followed by six other Ml 5.0 or greater events in the following weeks. The largest of these six earthquakes occurred on May 29, 2012, at 07:00 UTC (Ml 5.8, and was located 12 km southwest of the May 20, 2012, main event (latitude, 44.85 ˚N; longitude, 11.09 ˚E, resulting in the collapse of many buildings that had already been weakened, a greater number of victims, and most of the economic damage (see Figure 1. This sequence took place in one of the Italian regions that is considered to be at small-to-moderate seismic hazard [Gruppo di Lavoro MPS 2004]. Earthquakes of the M6 class have occurred in the past in this zone [Gruppo di Lavoro CPTI 2004], but with a much smaller time frequency with respect to the most seismically hazardous parts of Italy. […

  14. Quick regional centroid moment tensor solutions for the Emilia 2012 (northern Italy seismic sequence

    Silvia Pondrelli


    Full Text Available In May 2012, a seismic sequence struck the Emilia region (northern Italy. The mainshock, of Ml 5.9, occurred on May 20, 2012, at 02:03 UTC. This was preceded by a smaller Ml 4.1 foreshock some hours before (23:13 UTC on May 19, 2012 and followed by more than 2,500 earthquakes in the magnitude range from Ml 0.7 to 5.2. In addition, on May 29, 2012, three further strong earthquakes occurred, all with magnitude Ml ≥5.2: a Ml 5.8 earthquake in the morning (07:00 UTC, followed by two events within just 5 min of each other, one at 10:55 UTC (Ml 5.3 and the second at 11:00 UTC (Ml 5.2. For all of the Ml ≥4.0 earthquakes in Italy and for all of the Ml ≥4.5 in the Mediterranean area, an automatic procedure for the computation of a regional centroid moment tensor (RCMT is triggered by an email alert. Within 1 h of the event, a manually revised quick RCMT (QRCMT can be published on the website if the solution is considered stable. In particular, for the Emilia seismic sequence, 13 QRCMTs were determined and for three of them, those with M >5.5, the automatically computed QRCMTs fitted the criteria for publication without manual revision. Using this seismic sequence as a test, we can then identify the magnitude threshold for automatic publication of our QRCMTs.

  15. Ethical issues of prison nursing: A qualitative study in Northern Italy.

    Sasso, Loredana; Delogu, Barbara; Carrozzino, Roberto; Aleo, Giuseppe; Bagnasco, Annamaria


    Prisons are contexts where nurses are required to have specific skills to ensure that, in a setting designed for the expiation of crime, prisoners receive the same type of care as anyone else. But this is not always the case, giving rise to ethical issues. 'How do correctional nurses describe their working experience in prisons? What issues emerged?' This is a qualitative descriptive study. Following purposive sampling, we conducted five focus groups. Thematic analysis was used to analyse the data. Our sample included 31 correctional nurses in seven prisons in Northern Italy. The scientific merit of this study was recognized by the Academic Board of the University of Genoa. Approval to conduct the study was obtained from the Liguria Regional Government that funded this study and from the Local Health Authority that was the prison nurses' employer. Formal consent was obtained from all the nurses who volunteered to participate in this study. Five themes emerged from the focus groups: (1) prisoners' healthcare needs, (2) negotiation between custody and care, (3) satisfaction of working in prisons, (4) obstacles to quality care and (5) safety. 'Manipulation' was a transversal theme that emerged from all the focus groups. The problems generated by the clash between prison security and nursing care priorities did not enable nurses to practice autonomously and provide the best possible to care prisoners, giving rise to ethical issues and moral distress. This in turn causes high nursing turnover rates that negatively impact continuum of care. In Italy, correctional nurses urgently require specific education interventions with the participation of all those who work in prisons. Interventions based on the post-modern concept of restorative nursing could offer prison nurses the opportunity to both resolve ethical issues and reduce moral distress. © The Author(s) 2016.

  16. Developing a panarchy model of landscape conservation and management of alpine-mountain grassland in Northern Italy.

    Ian David Soane; Rocco Scolozzi; Beatrice Marelli; Cristina Orsatti; Klaus Hubacek; Alessandro Gretter


    This paper explores methods of applying resilience theory to a case study of natural resource management and the cultural landscape of upland and alpine pasture in northern Italy. We identify that the close interaction between alpine pastures and its managers offers a strong fit with the concept of a social-ecological system that maintains the cultural landscape. We first considered a descriptive approach looking historically at socio-economic development in the study area. We explored whethe...

  17. Adolescents in southern regions of Italy adhere to the Mediterranean diet more than those in the northern regions.

    Noale, Marianna; Nardi, Mariateresa; Limongi, Federica; Siviero, Paola; Caregaro, Lorenza; Crepaldi, Gaetano; Maggi, Stefania


    There is a large amount of literature regarding the benefits of the Mediterranean diet in the adult population; however, there is growing curiosity about the individuals who naturally adhere to those principles early in life. The "Evaluation of Dietary Habits in Adolescents," carried out by the National Research Council of Italy in 2009, is a survey that aimed to assess the dietary habits and lifestyles of Italian adolescents and their adherence to the Mediterranean diet. We hypothesized that there would be differences across regions, with a higher adherence in Southern Italy compared with Northern Italy based on geography. The survey was conducted in 3 different geographic locations in Italy and included a convenience sample of adolescents who attended either a middle or high school. The participants were asked to fill out a questionnaire concerning demographic data, lifestyle factors, and eating patterns, and scores were assigned according to adherence to the Mediterranean diet, as calculated using Trichopoulou's Mediterranean diet scale. The final sample included 565 adolescents, between 12 and 19 years old, who attended school in the northeastern, northwestern, or southern regions of Italy in 2009. According to the findings, 38.6% of the respondents had scores indicating a low adherence to the Mediterranean diet, whereas only 14% had scores showing a high adherence. Teenagers from the Southern region showed the highest adherence. Those with a high adherence to the Mediterranean diet consumed higher quantities of fiber, iron, vitamin B6, vitamin C, folic acid, vitamin A, vitamin D, and monounsaturated fats.




    Full Text Available Calcareous nannofossil biostratigraphic investigations have been carried out on samples collected from the Tabiago section, Brianza, northern Italy. This section records early Maastrichtian (CC23b nannofossil zone to early Eocene (NP10 nannofossil zone calcareous nannofossil assemblages. The Cretaceous-Tertiary transition is characterized by major changes in sedimentation rates and two likely stratigraphic gaps. The Cretaceous Brenno Formation was deposited with a high sedimentation rate (~20 m/m.y., whilst the Tabiago Formation of Paleogene age records a drastic decrease (~10 m/m.y.. The absence of the CC26 zonal marker Micula prinsii may indicate a stratigraphic hiatus or an extremely condensed level in the latest Maastrichtian. However, only two samples have been collected and analyzed in this interval due to low exposure of the outcrop, and the absence of M. prinsii could be the result of diagenetic overprint or insufficient sampling. A stratigraphic hiatus or a very condensed interval corresponds to the upper part of NP1 nannofossil zone and PƒÑ foraminiferal Zone and P1a Subzone in the early Paleocene. The poor exposure of the outcrop prevents to precisely locate the zonal boundaries between NP4 and NP5 and between NP9 and NP10 and impedes the documentation of possible further stratigraphic gaps or condensed intervals.    

  19. Landfill aeration in the framework of a reclamation project in Northern Italy.

    Raga, Roberto; Cossu, Raffaello


    In situ aeration by means of the Airflow technology was proposed for landfill conditioning before landfill mining in the framework of a reclamation project in Northern Italy. A 1-year aeration project was carried out on part of the landfill with the objective of evaluating the effectiveness of the Airflow technology for landfill aerobization, the evolution of waste biological stability during aeration and the effects on leachate and biogas quality and emissions. The main outcomes of the 1-year aeration project are presented in the paper. The beneficial effect of the aeration on waste biological stability was clear (63% reduction of the respiration index); however, the effectiveness of aeration on the lower part of the landfill is questionable, due to the limited potential for air migration into the leachate saturated layers. During the 1-year in situ aeration project approx. 275 MgC were discharged from the landfill body with the extracted gas, corresponding to 4.6 gC/kgDM. However, due to the presence of anaerobic niches in the aerated landfill, approx. 46% of this amount was extracted as CH4, which is higher than reported in other aeration projects. The O2 conversion quota was lower than reported in other similar projects, mainly due to the higher air flow rates applied. The results obtained enabled valuable recommendations to be made for the subsequent application of the Airflow technology to the whole landfill.

  20. Conservation tillage affects species composition but not species diversity: a comparative study in Northern Italy.

    Boscutti, Francesco; Sigura, Maurizia; Gambon, Nadia; Lagazio, Corrado; Krüsi, Bertil O; Bonfanti, Pierluigi


    Conservation tillage (CT) is widely considered to be a practice aimed at preserving several ecosystem functions. In the literature, however, there seems to be no clear pattern with regard to its benefits on species diversity and species composition. In Northern Italy, we compared species composition and diversity of both vascular plants and Carabids under two contrasting tillage systems, i.e., CT and conventional tillage, respectively. We hypothesized a significant positive impact of CT on both species diversity and composition. We also considered the potential influence of crop type. The tillage systems were studied under open field conditions with three types of annual crops (i.e., maize, soybean, and winter cereals), using a split-plot design on pairs of adjacent fields. Linear mixed models were applied to test tillage system, crop, and interaction effects on diversity indices. Plant and Carabids communities were analyzed by multivariate methods (CCA). On the whole, 136 plant and 51 carabid taxa were recorded. The two tillage systems studied did not differ in floristic or carabid diversity. Species composition, by contrast, proved to be characteristic for each combination of tillage system and crop type. In particular, CT fields were characterized by nutrient demanding weeds and the associated Carabids. The differences were especially pronounced in fields with winter cereals. The same was true for the flora and Carabids along the field boundaries. For studying the effects of CT practices on the sustainability of agro-ecosystems, therefore, the focus should be on species composition rather than on diversity measures.

  1. Aflatoxin M1 in Cow's Milk: Method Validation for Milk Sampled in Northern Italy.

    Bellio, Alberto; Bianchi, Daniela Manila; Gramaglia, Monica; Loria, Andrea; Nucera, Daniele; Gallina, Silvia; Gili, Marilena; Decastelli, Lucia


    Aflatoxins (AFs) are mycotoxins produced by some species of Aspergillus. In dairy cows, ingested AFB1 is metabolized into carcinogenic AFM1 which is eliminated through milk, thus posing a risk for consumer health. Here we describe the set, validation, and application of screening (ELISA) and confirmatory (HPLC) tests carried out on milk samples collected through official control of mycotoxin levels in northern Italy over a three-year period (2012-2014). The limit of detection (LOD) was set at 5 ppt and 2 ppt for ELISA and HPLC, respectively, and the limit of quantification (LOQ) was 10 ppt for confirmatory HPLC. A total of 1668 milk samples were analyzed: ELISA identified 36 (2.2%) positive milk samples that were subsequently confirmed by HPLC. The level of AFM1 in the positive samples ranged between 18 ± 2 and 208 ± 27 ppt. Of the total samples, only eight (0.5%) were found non-compliant with the EU regulatory limit (50 ppt; range 74 ± 10 to 208 ± 27 ppt). Use of ELISA and HPLC tests in series allows for high-volume analysis of samples, thus saving time and money while guaranteeing high analytical precision and accuracy.

  2. Detection of novel insect flavivirus sequences integrated in Aedes albopictus (Diptera: Culicidae in Northern Italy

    Tenorio Antonio


    Full Text Available Abstract The presence of DNA sequences integrated from a new flavivirus related to Cell Fusing Agent and Kamiti River Virus was identified in wild Aedes albopictus mosquito populations from the provinces of Trentino and Padova, Northern Italy. Field work was developed during August–October 2007 with BG-traps, and mosquitoes were screened for flavivirus and alphavirus. No alphavirus was detected, indicating that Chikungunya virus is not present in these mosquitoes in Trentino and Padova area. However, 21% of the pools were positive for flavivirus, further recognised with BLAST as similar to Kamiti River Virus. Phylogenetical analysis with 708 nucleotides from the NS5 gene identified this virus as a new member of the insect flavivirus clade, together with others like Kamiti River Virus, Cell Fusing Agent or Culex flavivirus, and in the group of those transmitted by Aedes. Furthermore, the treatment with RNAse, indicated that this flavivirus should be integrated in the genome of Ae. albopictus. These results propose that these sequences are transmitted by both sexes, and with different prevalence in the studied populations, and support the idea of a widespread distribution of integrated genomes in several mosquitoes from different areas, as first demonstrated with Cell Silent Agent. Evolutionary implications of this discovery and application in flavivirus phylogeny are discussed.

  3. Exit and voice: an investigation of care service users in Austria, Belgium, Italy, and Northern Ireland.

    Egger de Campo, Marianne


    The past decades have seen an introduction of market elements in the provision of social care services (Finer 1999; Mabbett and Bolderson 1999). Welfare state reforms all over Europe have produced welfare pluralism and claims that the increased choice will enhance user participation, promote older persons' autonomy, and improve the quality of services. Within the Fifth FP Research Project CARMA (Care for the Aged at Risk of Marginalization) a case study among users of care services in Austria, Belgium, Italy, and Northern Ireland was conducted that focussed on friction and conflict between clients and service providers and investigated the reasons for discharge and denial of admission to a service. The data from this study can be interpreted in terms of Hirschman's (Exit, voice, and loyalty: responses to decline in firms, organizations, and states. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, 1970) theory on 'exit' and 'voice' as expressions of consumers' dissatisfaction with the quality of a product. Data were collected in different systems offering a variety of procedures for exit from one provider and the choice of a competitor. Also different practices of handling voice i.e., complaints have been documented. The paper questions to what extent various possibilities for exit and voice can enhance users' autonomy and increase the quality of the service supply. It thus contributes empirical findings to a debate that often emphasizes ideological arguments.

  4. Reference values for ethylenethiourea in urine in Northern Italy: results of a pilot study.

    Colosio, Claudio; Visentin, Sara; Birindelli, Sarah; Campo, Laura; Fustinoni, Silvia; Mariani, Franco; Tiramani, Manuela; Tommasini, Michele; Brambilla, Gabri; Maroni, Marco


    This study was carried out to define reference values for urinary ethylenethiourea (ETU) in the Northern Italy population and to identify the sources of exposure. Ninety-five healthy subjects were selected. A spot urine sample was collected in the morning, and analyzed using GC/MS in the EI/SIM mode. Thirty-nine subjects showed urinary ETU concentrations lower than the limit of detection (LOD, 0.4 microg/g creatinine), and the remainders ETU concentrations ranging from 0.5 to 11.6 microg/g creatinine. No correlation was shown between smoke or alcohol intake and urinary ETU concentrations. Based on data on ethylene-bis-dithiocarbamate (EBDC) concentrations in food, we estimated a total EBDCs intake of 31.7-50.1 microg/day. These values are largely below the ADIs, but explain the presence of small amounts of ETU in the urine samples we have analyzed. Finally, it was estimated that the mean ETU in urine in the Italian general population is 0.6-0.8 microg/g creatinine, with a 95th percentile of 4.5-5.0 microg/g creatinine. These values can be used as reference, to compare the results of biological monitoring activities carried out on EBDCs occupationally and environmentally exposed populations.

  5. Artificial islands in northern Lazio (Italy): evaluation of different hydrodynamic scenarios in support of the design

    Antonini, Alfiero; Bonamano, Simone; Scanu, Sergio; Peviani, Maximo; Marcelli, Marco


    The present work shows the assessment of the hypothetical influence on the hydrodynamic field induced by the construction of three artificial islands off the northern coast of Lazio (Italy). The proposed settlements will be realized with cutting-edge techniques already used around the world, allowing to explore, develop, test and apply the possibilities of a truly sustainable development of the coast. Following the identification of suitable sites, the design and construction of these insular facilities will procede locating them in such a way as to protect the coasts, adjusting sediment transportation and encouraging the recovery and development of marine ecosystems with high ecological value. The eco-sustainable islands will be created also using (reusing and recycling) residual material from human activities, as already experienced with considerable success in projects realised worldwide. To assess the effects of artificial islands on the coastline dynamics different scenarios were considered with different design choices and weather conditions through the application of two forecasting mathematical models that calculate wind-induced currents (ADCIRC) and the propagation of waves (STWAVE) and that can also assess the variation of littoral drift effects induced by coastline modifications.

  6. Lung cancer in an urban area in Northern Italy near a coke oven plant.

    Parodi, Stefano; Stagnaro, Emanuele; Casella, Claudia; Puppo, Antonella; Daminelli, Enrico; Fontana, Vincenzo; Valerio, Federico; Vercelli, Marina


    Coke ovens are well-known sources of potentially carcinogenic air pollutants, but studies on resident populations are still poor. This study investigates the incidence of lung cancer near a coke oven in Cornigliano, a district of the Genoa municipality in Northern Italy. Genoa proper and one district similar to Cornigliano as regards socio-economic deprivation were selected as referents. Incidence data were drawn from the Ligurian Cancer Registry for 1986-1997 calendar period. Concentrations of pollutants related to the industrial activity (namely benzene, benzo[a]pyrene, PM(10), CO, NO(2) and SO(2)) were collected in selected locations before and after the coke oven closing. Spatial trend around the plant was assessed by Stone's test, while the pattern of risk across Cornigliano was evaluated via disease mapping in a Bayesian model. A gradient of air pollutants was observed around the coke oven, which disappeared after its closing. In Cornigliano, 158 lung cancer cases were observed in males and 28 in females. Only a marginal excess risk was observed versus the two selected referents, while a gradient in the areas close to the plant emerged among females. Disease mapping revealed another cluster of risk for both sexes in the Eastern part of the district, where a foundry was operative until the early 1980s. The excess risk for females is consistent with pollution measurements and with other epidemiological evidence. The geographic pattern of incidence suggests a role of industrial air pollution as a risk factor for lung cancer.

  7. Verification of a probabilistic flood forecasting system for an Alpine Region of northern Italy

    Laiolo, P.; Gabellani, S.; Rebora, N.; Rudari, R.; Ferraris, L.; Ratto, S.; Stevenin, H.


    Probabilistic hydrometeorological forecasting chains are increasingly becoming an operational tool used by civil protection centres for issuing flood alerts. One of the most important requests of decision makers is to have reliable systems, for this reason an accurate verification of their predictive performances become essential. The aim of this work is to validate a probabilistic flood forecasting system: Flood-PROOFS. The system works in real time, since 2008, in an alpine Region of northern Italy, Valle d'Aosta. It is used by the Civil Protection regional service to issue warnings and by the local water company to protect its facilities. Flood-PROOFS uses as input Quantitative Precipitation Forecast (QPF) derived from the Italian limited area model meteorological forecast (COSMO-I7) and forecasts issued by regional expert meteorologists. Furthermore the system manages and uses both real time meteorological and satellite data and real time data on the maneuvers performed by the water company on dams and river devices. The main outputs produced by the computational chain are deterministic and probabilistic discharge forecasts in different cross sections of the considered river network. The validation of the flood prediction system has been conducted on a 25 months period considering different statistical methods such as Brier score, Rank histograms and verification scores. The results highlight good performances of the system as support system for emitting warnings but there is a lack of statistics especially for huge discharge events.

  8. Aseismic deformation associated with an earthquake swarm in the northern Apennines (Italy)

    Gualandi, A.; Nichele, C.; Serpelloni, E.; Chiaraluce, L.; Anderlini, L.; Latorre, D.; Belardinelli, M. E.; Avouac, J.-P.


    Analyzing the displacement time series from continuous GPS (cGPS) with an Independent Component Analysis, we detect a transient deformation signal that correlates both in space and time with a seismic swarm activity (maximum Mw=3.69 ± 0.09) occurred in the hanging wall of the Altotiberina normal fault (Northern Apennines, Italy) in 2013-2014. The geodetic transient lasted ˜6 months and produced a NW-SE trending extension of ˜5.3 mm, consistent with the regional tectonic regime. The seismicity and the geodetic signal are consistent with slip on two splay faults in the Altotiberina fault (ATF) hanging wall. Comparing the seismic moment associated with the geodetic transient and the seismic events, we observe that seismicity accounts for only a fraction of the measured geodetic deformation. The combined seismic and aseismic slip decreased the Coulomb stress on the locked shallow portion of the ATF, while the transition region to the creeping section has been loaded.




    Full Text Available Noriaster barberoi gen. et. sp. n. is based on a single specimen from the Calcare di Zorzino (Norian, Triassic of northern Italy. A member of the surviving Poraniidae (Valvatida; Echinodermata, N. barberoi is the oldest-known species assignable to a Jurassic and younger family and the first such species known from the Triassic. No Paleozoic species with close affinities with crown-group families has been recognized. Noriaster and the slightly older Triassic genus Trichasteropsis from the Muschelkalk of Germany together indicate that the diversification of crown-group asteroids was well underway at least by Middle and Late Triassic time. Phylogeny of crown-group asteroids is problematic because extant familial-level taxa are morphologically divergent, and they exhibit comparatively few uncontested characters that clearly indicate phylogenetic affinities and sequence. Familial assignment of Noriaster is supported by a new cladistic analysis. To the student of living asteroids, the appearance of a living Noriaster would be remarkable only because it would seem so commonplace. To the extent that form correlates with function, Noriaster suggests that modern asteroid life modes emerged quite promptly during the Mesozoic asteroid diversification. 

  10. Helicobacteraceae in Bulk Tank Milk of Dairy Herds from Northern Italy

    Valentina Bianchini


    Full Text Available Helicobacter pylori is responsible for gastritis and gastric adenocarcinoma in humans, but the routes of transmission of this bacterium have not been clearly defined. Few studies led to supposing that H. pylori could be transmitted through raw milk, and no one investigated the presence of other Helicobacteraceae in milk. In the current work, the presence of Helicobacteraceae was investigated in the bulk tank milk of dairy cattle herds located in northern Italy both by direct plating onto H. pylori selective medium and by screening PCR for Helicobacteraceae, followed by specific PCRs for H. pylori, Wolinella spp., and “Candidatus Helicobacter bovis.” Three out of 163 bulk milk samples tested positive for Helicobacteraceae, but not for the subsequent PCRs. H. pylori was not isolated in any case. However, given similar growth conditions, Arcobacter butzleri, A. cryaerophilus, and A. skirrowii were recovered. In conclusion, the prevalence of Helicobacteraceae in raw milk was negligible (1.8%, and H. pylori was not identified in any of the positive samples, suggesting that, at least in the farming conditions of the investigated area, bovine milk does not represent a potential source of infection.

  11. Efficiency Analysis of Independent and Centralized Heating Systems for Residential Buildings in Northern Italy

    Fabio Rinaldi


    Full Text Available The primary energy consumption in residential buildings is determined by the envelope thermal characteristics, air change, outside climatic data, users’ behaviour and the adopted heating system and its control. The new Italian regulations strongly suggest the installation of centralized boilers in renovated buildings with more than four apartments. This work aims to investigate the differences in primary energy consumption and efficiency among several independent and centralized heating systems installed in Northern Italy. The analysis is carried out through the following approach: firstly building heating loads are evaluated using the software TRNSYS® and, then, heating system performances are estimated through a simplified model based on the European Standard EN 15316. Several heating systems have been analyzed, evaluating: independent and centralized configurations, condensing and traditional boilers, radiator and radiant floor emitters and solar plant integration. The heating systems are applied to four buildings dating back to 2010, 2006, 1960s and 1930s. All the combinations of heating systems and buildings are analyzed in detail, evaluating efficiency and primary energy consumption. In most of the cases the choice between centralized and independent heating systems has minor effects on primary energy consumption, less than 3%: the introduction of condensing technology and the integration with solar heating plant can reduce energy consumption by 11% and 29%, respectively.

  12. West Nile Virus Surveillance in 2013 via Mosquito Screening in Northern Italy and the Influence of Weather on Virus Circulation

    Calzolari, Mattia; Pautasso, Alessandra; Montarsi, Fabrizio; Albieri, Alessandro; Bellini, Romeo; Bonilauri, Paolo; Defilippo, Francesco; Lelli, Davide; Moreno, Ana; Chiari, Mario; Tamba, Marco; Zanoni, Mariagrazia; Varisco, Giorgio; Bertolini, Silvia; Modesto, Paola; Radaelli, Maria Cristina; Iulini, Barbara; Prearo, Marino; Ravagnan, Silvia; Cazzin, Stefania; Mulatti, Paolo; Monne, Isabella; Bonfanti, Lebana; Marangon, Stefano; Goffredo, Maria; Savini, Giovanni; Martini, Simone; Mosca, Andrea; Farioli, Marco; Gemma Brenzoni, Laura; Palei, Manlio; Russo, Francesca; Natalini, Silvano; Angelini, Paola; Casalone, Cristina; Dottori, Michele; Capelli, Gioia


    West Nile virus (WNV) is a recently re-emerged health problem in Europe. In Italy, an increasing number of outbreaks of West Nile disease, with occurrences of human cases, have been reported since 2008. This is particularly true in northern Italy, where entomological surveillance systems have been implemented at a regional level. The aim of this study was to use, for the first time, all the entomological data collected in the five regions undergoing surveillance for WNV in northern Italy to characterize the viral circulation (at a spatial and temporal scale), identify potential mosquito vectors, and specify relationships between virus circulation and meteorological conditions. In 2013, 286 sites covering the entire Pianura Padana area were monitored. A total of 757,461 mosquitoes were sampled. Of these, 562,079 were tested by real-time PCR in 9,268 pools, of which 180 (1.9%) were positive for WNV. The largest part of the detected WNV sequences belonged to lineage II, demonstrating that, unlike those in the past, the 2013 outbreak was mainly sustained by this WNV lineage. This surveillance also detected the Usutu virus, a WNV-related flavivirus, in 241 (2.6%) pools. The WNV surveillance systems precisely identified the area affected by the virus and detected the viral circulation approximately two weeks before the occurrence of onset of human cases. Ninety percent of the sampled mosquitoes were Culex pipiens, and 178/180 WNV-positive pools were composed of only this species, suggesting this mosquito is the main WNV vector in northern Italy. A significantly higher abundance of the vector was recorded in the WNV circulation area, which was characterized by warmer and less rainy conditions and greater evapotranspiration compared to the rest of the Pianura Padana, suggesting that areas exposed to these conditions are more suitable for WNV circulation. This observation highlights warmer and less rainy conditions as factors able to enhance WNV circulation and cause virus

  13. Sinuosity change of the Po River near Cremona (Northern Italy) - a result of neotectonic activity?

    Petrovszki, Judit; Timár, Gábor


    In the map sheets of the Second Military Survey of the Habsburg Empire, Lombardia, Parma, Modena and Venice also can be seen (Timár et al., 2006). This area was surveyed between 1818 and 1829. In these map sheets, we can also follow the river Po from Vaccarizza to the delta. This river reach is about 350 km long. This river reach was digitized and sinuosity values were calculated with different window sizes, and displayed in a spectrum-like diagram (sinuosity spectra; after van Balen et al., 2008). At Cremona, a significante sinuosity change were identified. The sinuosity increasing, and we have high sinuosity values. In the summarizing geological map of Italy (Compagnoni and Calluzzo, 2004), at this place, a tectonic line was identified. So probably this fault line invokes the sinuosity change on the river. The vertical movements indicated on the maps are just the opposite like they would be according to the flume experiments of Ouchi (1985). In the case of the Po River at Cremona, the decrease of the channel slope results higher sinuosity. The reason is that the rate of the slope and water discharge is higher than it is required by the self-organized meandering and the river parameters fell to the range of the unorganized meandering (cf. Timár, 2003). Another possible explanation could be that the northern tributary, the Adda River has significant sediment load that lowers the sinuosity of the trunk river at the confluence. Compagnoni, B., Galluzzo, F. (eds., 2004): Geological Map of Italy. Agenzia per la Protezione dell'Ambiente per I Servizi Tecnici - Dipartimento Difesa del Suolo, Servizio Geologico d'Italia, Rome-Florence-Genoa. Map, scale=1:1250000, especially printed for the 32nd International Geological Congress. Ouchi, S. (1985): Response of alluvial rivers to slow active tectonic movement. Geol. Soc. Am. Bull. 96: 504-515. Timár, G. (2003): Controls on channel sinuosity changes: a case study of the Tisza River, the Great Hungarian Plain. Quaternary

  14. Control of the coypu (Myocastor coypus by cage-trapping in the cultivated plain of northern Italy

    Claudio Prigioni


    Full Text Available Abstract Between November 2002 and March 2003, thirty-five trapping sessions, carried out along 1.5-9 m wide irrigation canals scattered in six provinces of Lombardy region (northern Italy, allowed us to test for the effectiveness of coypu (Myocastor coypus control operations in the central part of the intensively cultivated plain of the River Po. A total of 1534 coypus were captured, with a trapping success of 0.087 removed coypus/trap-days. Trapping sessions of about 33 consecutive days guaranteed the best cost/benefit ratio. Only few trapping sessions determined a significant decrease of local population size. In most of the trapping sites, removal of coypus probably enhanced immigration of animals from neighbouring areas. Among captured coypus, the sex-ratio was not significantly biased. The young/adults ratio (mean value = 0.33 significantly decreased in February and March 2003 with respect to previous months. The 11.6% of overall trapped females were pregnant. Adult coypus resulted sexually dimorphic for head-body length, tail length and weight, being higher for males, while young coypus did not show any significant variation between sexes. Some implications for the coypu management are also discussed. Riassunto Controllo numerico della Nutria (Myocastor coypus mediante trappolaggio in aree coltivate della pianura Padana. Nel periodo novembre 2002-marzo 2003 sono state effettuate 35 sessioni di trappolaggio lungo canali di irrigazione (1,5-9 m di larghezza distribuiti in 6 province lombarde, al fine di valutare l’efficacia dell’intervento di controllo della popolazione di Nutria (Myocastor coypus. In totale sono stati catturati 1534 animali con un successo di trappolaggio di 0,087 nutrie/giorni trappola. Le sessioni di trappolaggio della durata di 33 giorni consecutivi erano quelle che garantivano il miglior rapporto costi/benefici. Un significativo

  15. Human impacts on the evolution of Rosolina Mare (Northern Adriatic, Italy): first results

    Corbau, Corinne; Simeoni, Umberto


    The Italian coasts have undergone profound changes over the last century, in particular after the late 1950's. With the tourism industry development, the coastal system has been hardened resulting in the drastic reduction of its evolutive capacity. Human activity has therefore become a geological agent that has affected the evolution of the coastal zone both directly and indirectly in the last century. This study focuses on some of the coastal morphologies that have been modified by human actions in long and medium-term. The research was based on a comparison of sixty-year changes in land use, on dune-beach system and on the nearshore of Rosolina (Northern Adriatic, Italy). This coastal sandy zone extends over about 8 km in a N-NE - S-SW direction, and is delimited by the Adige River to the north and by the Porto Caleri to the south. This littoral, characterized by highly humanized stretches and natural stretches without human activities, can be divided into three parts: the first in the north, about 2 km long, where the beach is almost non-existent, the second in the central part long about 3 km, with a wide beach and completely built up for tourism, and the third in the south, about 3 km long, is within a natural park and is characterized by a wide beach bordered by a complex dune system. In the central part the coastal dunes present the greater heights, with an average of about +7 m (+ 4.5 m to +11 m); in the northern part the rare dunes reach heights of about +5 m (+4.5 m to +5.5 m). In the southern part the dunes present lower heights averaging +4.2 m (from +3 m to +5.5 m). The conservation state of the dunes is the result of coastal anthropization: blowouts and breaches in the coastal dune system are observed where there was the greatest urban development to allow users access to the beach. These "passages", however, constitute preferential sediment paths out of the beach as sediments are no longer stopped by the dune and its vegetation and are thus

  16. Land use changes and its climatic implications in Northern Italy during the Dark Ages

    Oeggl, Klaus; Oeggl-Wahlmüller, Notburga; Festi, Daniela; Zagermann, Marcus


    Here we present an interdisciplinary study on land use changes in Northern Italy at the transition from the Roman Empire to the Early Middle Ages. The combination of archaeological data and high-resolution pollen analyses carried out in the Fiavè basin (Trentino) provide a detailed insight in socio-economic changes and its implications with climate in the Dark Ages. The vegetation in this area is dominated up to 1000 m by submediterranian trees like Fraxinus ornus and Ostrya carpinifolia, superseded by a mixed Fagus and Abies forest with variable amounts of Picea abies. Since 2008 archaeological surveys in the Fiavè basin as well as excavations conducted on a fortified hill-top settlement (castrum) in 985m register the settlement development of this settlement cluster and reveal an almost continuous occupation from Roman to Early Medieval Times. In addition a high-resolution pollen record from a 1.30 m thick peat sequence of the bog "Palude di Fiave" discloses four main phases: (1) in the Late Iron Age high amounts of arboreal pollen and the spread of Abies demonstrate a decrease in settlement activity suggested by wetter climate conditions. (2) During the Roman Empire a phase with arable farming in the basin starts. Olea, Juglans and Castanea sativa are introduced and document the onset of horticulture in this region. (3) After 300 AD - during the Migration Period - the wet and cool conditions have had poor impact on settlement activity. Agricultural (Cerealia) and nitrophilous indicators (Plantago, Chenopodiaceae, Urticaceae) are continuously proved. However a change within the cultivated crops in relation to the climate conditions is observed. Subsequently a progressive recovery of Pinus followed by Abies and Fagus marks the climatic improvement at the beginning of the Early Medieval Times. (4) The time from 600 to 800 AD is characterized by increasing frequency and diversity of anthropogenic-related indicators. The implications of these land use changes with

  17. Performance of stormwater detention tanks for urban drainage systems in northern Italy.

    Todeschini, Sara; Papiri, Sergio; Ciaponi, Carlo


    The performance of stormwater detention tanks with alternative design configurations (insertion in the storm sewer network; volume per impervious hectare) and operating conditions (continuous and intermittent emptying rules) have been evaluated according to an integrated approach. Various performance indices have been adopted to describe the mitigation of the pollution impact to the natural environment, the reduction of the management and maintenance charges for the urban drainage system, the preservation of the normal purification efficiency, and the limitation of the costs at the treatment plant. The US EPA Storm Water Management Model has been used to simulate the rainfall-runoff process and the pollutant dynamics on theoretical catchments and storm sewer networks for an individual event, as well as for a continuous run of events and inter event periods of one year recorded at the rain gauge of Cascina Scala (Pavia, northern Italy). Also the influence of the main characteristics of the urban catchment and the drainage system (area of the catchment and slope of the network) on the performance of alternative design and operating solutions has been examined. Stormwater detention tanks combined with flow regulators demonstrated good performance with respect to environmental pollution: satisfactory performance indicators can be obtained with fairly low flow rates of flow regulators (0.5-1 L/s per hectare of impervious area) and tank volumes of about 35-50 m(3) per impervious hectare. Continuous emptying guaranteed the lowest number and duration of overflows, while an intermittent operation minimised the volume sent for purification reducing the costs and the risks of impairment in the normal treatment efficiency of the plant. Overall, simulation outcomes revealed that the performance indexes are scarcely affected by the area of the catchment and the slope of the drainage network. The result of this study represents a key issue for the implementation of

  18. Anomalous fluid emission of a deep borehole in a seismically active area of Northern Apennines (Italy)

    Heinicke, J., E-mail: [Saechsische Akademie der Wissenschaften zu Leipzig, Arbeitsstelle an der TU Bergakademie Freiberg, 09599 Freiberg (Germany); Italiano, F. [Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Sezione di Palermo, 90146 Palermo (Italy); Koch, U. [Saechsische Akademie der Wissenschaften zu Leipzig, Arbeitsstelle Bad Brambach, 09599 Bad Brambach (Germany); Martinelli, G. [ARPA Emilia Romagna, 42100 Reggio Emilia (Italy); Telesca, L. [Istituto di Metodologie per l' Analisi Ambientale, CNR, 85050 Tito (Italy)


    The Miano borehole, 1047 m deep, is located close to the river Parma in the Northern Apennines, Italy. A measuring station has been installed to observe the discharge of fluids continuously since November 2004. The upwelling fluid of this artesian well is a mixture of thermal water and CH{sub 4} as main components. In non-seismogenic areas, a relatively constant fluid emission would be expected, perhaps overlaid with long term variations from that kind of deep reservoir over time. However, the continuous record of the fluid emission, in particular the water discharge, the gas flow rate and the water temperature, show periods of stable values interrupted by anomalous periods of fluctuations in the recorded parameters. The anomalous variations of these parameters are of low amplitude in comparison to the total values but significant in their long-term trend. Meteorological effects due to rain and barometric pressure were not detected in recorded data probably due to reservoir depth and relatively high reservoir overpressure. Influences due to the ambient temperature after the discharge were evaluated by statistical analysis. Our results suggest that recorded changes in fluid emission parameters can be interpreted as a mixing process of different fluid components at depth by variations in pore pressure as a result of seismogenic stress variation. Local seismicity was analyzed in comparison to the fluid physico-chemical data. The analysis supports the idea that an influence on fluid transport conditions due to geodynamic processes exists. Water temperature data show frequent anomalies probably connected with possible precursory phenomena of local seismic events.

  19. Online participation in climate change adaptation: A case study of agricultural adaptation measures in Northern Italy.

    Bojovic, Dragana; Bonzanigo, Laura; Giupponi, Carlo; Maziotis, Alexandros


    The new EU strategy on adaptation to climate change suggests flexible and participatory approaches. Face-to-face contact, although it involves time-consuming procedures with a limited audience, has often been considered the most effective participatory approach. In recent years, however, there has been an increase in the visibility of different citizens' initiatives in the online world, which strengthens the possibility of greater citizen agency. This paper investigates whether the Internet can ensure efficient public participation with meaningful engagement in climate change adaptation. In elucidating issues regarding climate change adaptation, we developed an eParticipation framework to explore adaptation capacity of agriculture to climate change in Northern Italy. Farmers were mobilised using a pre-existing online network. First they took part in an online questionnaire for revealing their perceptions of and reactions to the impacts of ongoing changes in agriculture. We used these results to suggest a portfolio of policy measures and to set evaluation criteria. Farmers then evaluated these policy options, using a multi criteria analysis tool with a simple user-friendly interface. Our results showed that eParticipation is efficient: it supports a rapid data collection, while involving high number of participants. Moreover, we demonstrated that the digital divide is decreasingly an obstacle for using online spaces for public engagement. This research does not present eParticipation as a panacea. Rather, eParticipation was implemented with well-established participatory approaches to both validate the results and, consequently, communicate meaningful messages on local agricultural adaptation practices to regional decision-makers. Feedbacks from the regional decision-makers showed their interest in using eParticipation to improve communication with farmers in the future. We expect that, with further Internet proliferation, eParticipation may allow the inclusion of

  20. Reducing time delays in the management of ischemic stroke patients in Northern Italy.

    Vidale, Simone; Arnaboldi, Marco; Bezzi, Giacomo; Bono, Giorgio; Grampa, Giampiero; Guidotti, Mario; Perrone, Patrizia; Salmaggi, Andrea; Zarcone, Davide; Zoli, Alberto; Agostoni, Elio


    Thrombolysis represents the best therapy for ischemic stroke but the main limitation of its administration is time. The avoidable delay is a concept reflecting the effectiveness of management pathway. For this reason, we projected a study concerning the detection of main delays with following introduction of corrective factors. In this paper we describe the results after these corrections. Consecutive patients admitted for ischemic stroke during a 3-months period to 35 hospitals of a macro-area of Northern Italy were enrolled. Each time of management was registered, identifying three main intervals: pre-hospital, in-hospital and total times. Previous corrective interventions were: 1.increasing of population awareness to use the Emergency Medical Service (EMS); 2.pre-notification of Emergency Department; 3.use of high urgency codes; 4.use of standardised operational algorithm. Statistical analysis was conducted using time-to-event analysis and Cox proportional hazard regression. 1084 patients were enrolled. EMS was alerted for 56.3% of subjects, mainly in females and severe strokes (p<0.001). Thrombolytic treatment was performed in 4.7% of patients. Median pre-hospital and in-hospital times were 113 and 105min, while total time was 240. High urgency codes at transport contributed to reduce pre-hospital and in-hospital time (p<0.05). EMS use and high urgency codes promoted thrombolysis. Treatment within 4.5hours from symptom onset was performed in 14% of patients more than the first phase of study. The implementation of an organizational system based on EMS and concomitant high urgency codes use was effective to reduce avoidable delay and to increase thrombolysis. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Tectonic control on the Late Quaternary hydrography of the Upper Tiber Basin (Northern Apennines, Italy)

    Benvenuti, Marco; Bonini, Marco; Moroni, Adriana


    We examine the intramontane Upper Tiber Basin in the Northern Apennines (central Italy), where sub-orthogonal fault systems forced river deviation and the abandonment of alluvial fans since the late Middle Pleistocene. Archaeological material, spanning the Middle Palaeolithic-Iron Age, was collected mostly from the surface of the Late Quaternary alluvial landforms and related deposits (MUP and HOL units). This information contributed to the partial dating of seven major stages of drainage development. Normal faults parallel and transverse to the basin trend were active at different times and conditioned the valley pattern of the Middle (MUP1-2)-Late (MUP3) Pleistocene Tiber, Singerna, Sovara and Tignana rivers, which still flow today into the basin. The MUP1 and the MUP3 fans were beheaded by the displacement of their feeder valleys along the basin-transverse Carmine and Montedoglio faults. In some cases, the former feeder rivers underwent stream piracy but their courses mostly deviated in response of the topographic gradient created by faulting, as well as through the incision of new valleys that exploited the lithological contrast along the fault lines. The MUP3 Tignana fan was abandoned mostly due to the activity of the basin-parallel, dip-slip Sansepolcro fault. Subsidence driven by the basin-parallel Anghiari and Sansepolcro fault systems also provided the accommodation space for the MUP3 and HOl1-2 Afra fans between Late Pleistocene and early-mid Holocene. This study exemplifies the interplay between longitudinal and transverse fault systems, and the Late Quaternary hydrographic evolution of an extensional basin settled in the axial zone of an active fold-and-thrust belt. Although the faulting has interacted with the forcing exerted by the Late Quaternary climate fluctuations on the basin drainage systems, the tectonic rates are sufficiently high to represent the prime controller on base-level change and drainage routing patterns.

  2. A Monitoring System for Mitigation Planning: The Case of "Bagnaschino" Landslide in Northern Italy

    Giuliani Andrea


    Full Text Available Problem statement: The Bagnaschino landslide occurred in November 1994 that caused extensive floods and many landslides all over northern Italy. In southern Piedmont, the Casotto River (Cuneo Province damaged many kilometers of provincial road and the river was dammed by this landslide. The landslide involves an area of about 100 thousands m3, but a good knowledge of the landslide is however still missing because of the complexity of the phenomenon. Approach: The aim of this study has been to collect and reorganize available data with the georeferencing in a GIS project of the information taken from investigations of the last years. An electric tomography and seismic reflection were carried out above the landslide body to enrich the available data. The final goal has been to well-know the sliding surfaces and the different processes involved in the slope deformation. Results: The research has redefined the geological base model, that was been the local stratigraphy is represented by an heterogeneous deposit of loose materials (20-30 m, with abundant silty-clayey matrix. The bedrock is composed by fractured micashists, metabolites and green stones. The landslide has shown many surfaces of movement at different depths and continuous reactivations, but the triggering mechanism is still not clarified due to the complex geological setting. Conclusion: Rock masses observed in correspondence of the road and the river bed has suggested that the main sliding surface did not involve the lower part of the slope and that the road is built on stable bedrock. The intention will be to continue the monitoring of the landslide in order to give to the Local Authorities the correct instruments for planning mitigation projects.

  3. Tectono-sedimentary evolution of the Palazzuolo anticline (Northern Apennines - Italy)

    Carlini, Mirko; Storti, Fabrizio; Balsamo, Fabrizio; Clemenzi, Luca; Ogata, Kei; Aldega, Luca; Corrado, Sveva; Tagliaferri, Alessio; Tinterri, Roberto; Viola, Giulio


    The Santerno valley (Northern Apennines, Italy) offers very good exposures of the regional scale Palazzuolo anticline, a thrust-related fold that represents one of the major deep-rooted contractional structures in this portion of the chain. Good outcropping conditions allowed the study of the detailed geometry and deformational processes affecting the anticline. The growth of the Palazzuolo anticline started during the deposition of the Langhian-Tortonian foredeep deposits of the Marnoso-Arenacea Formation and affected its sedimentation forming a composite growth wedge whose thickness decreases by 70% from the basin depocenter to the anticlinal crest. The growth of the anticline was steered by a major blind thrust characterized by a flat-ramp-flat geometry that only during the latest stages of its activity (reasonably Plio-Quaternary) cut out-of-sequence through the crest-forelimb transition and produced a well-developed footwall drag syncline (Castellaccio thrust). Burial by the eroded portion of the Marnoso-Arenacea Formation and the overlying ocean-derived Ligurian units is inferred to have caused a maximum temperature in the studied sandstones of 100-110°C (from vitrinite reflectance and clay minerals data), while paleofluid temperatures inferred from calcite vein structural diagenesis (petrography, O and C stable isotope geochemistry, and microthermometry) are inferred to be lower than 70°C. The collected multidisciplinary dataset integrated with the high-resolution physical stratigraphy allowed us to constrain the tectono-sedimentary evolution of the Palazzuolo anticline along a balanced cross-section and its sequential restoration. Temporal constraints and eventual multiple stages of the fault activity are being investigated through (U-Th)/He dating of apatites and K-Ar isotopic dating of authigenic synkinematic illite related to the brittle faulting accommodated along the Castellaccio thrust.

  4. Changes in flood seasonality in Northern Italy during the past 2000 years

    Wirth, Stefanie B.; Gilli, Adrian; Simonneau, Anaëlle; Ariztegui, Daniel; Vannière, Boris; Glur, Lukas; Chapron, Emmanuel; Magny, Michel; Anselmetti, Flavio S.


    The hydro-climate of the Mediterranean area is expected to experience strong impacts with climate change, a prognosis that was corroborated by the cyclone Cleopatra and its devastating effects in November 2013. In order to investigate the occurrence and the controlling climatic factors of such extreme hydrological events in the past, we investigated the frequency and seasonality of floods in Northern Italy during the past 2000 years using an annually laminated (i.e. varved) lake-sediment record (Lake Ledro, Trentino). The past flood occurrence is traced by characteristic flood deposits intercalated within the regular lacustrine sediments. The seasonality information is retrieved from the stratigraphic position of these flood deposits within the annual sedimentary cycle. Overall, the reconstructed flood signal reveals a dominance of summer (26.2%) and autumn (63.4%) events, while winter (3.7%) and spring (6.7%) events are rare, yet, the seasonal distribution varies over time. With regard to climatic forcing, periods of increased flood frequency, in particular in summer, correlate with solar minima (including Dalton, Maunder, Spörer). This correlation indicates a strong influence of variations in solar irradiance on the atmospheric circulation over the North Atlantic and thus on the latitudinal position of the westerly storm tracks. Furthermore, the comparison of our data with a sea-surface temperature (SST) reconstruction based on foraminiferal oxygen isotopes from the Mediterranean suggests that intense autumn floods more often occurred during periods of warm Mediterranean sea-surface temperature, in particular from 500 to 1000 AD. However, the intensity aspect of paleofloods requires more research, for instance by comparison with instrumental and historic data sets. The outcome of this paleoclimate study agrees with modern weather patterns in the Southern Alps. On this basis, our data set thus supports the assessment of precipitation forcing on a timescale that

  5. Sexual behaviour in Ligurian (Northern Italy) adolescents and young people: suggestions for HPV vaccination policies.

    Panatto, Donatella; Amicizia, Daniela; Lugarini, Jessica; Sasso, Tiziana; Sormani, Maria Pia; Badolati, Giuseppe; Gasparini, Roberto


    Human papillomavirus is a common sexually transmitted virus, and persistent infection with high-risk types is the necessary factor for cervical cancer. We investigated sexual behaviour and the age of the first sexual intercourse among young people (14-24 years) in Liguria (Northern Italy) in order to provide information that might orient the country's future vaccination policy. The Italian Authorities offer free vaccination to 12-year-old females, however a better prevention of HPV would to be implemented by introducing the vaccine to new cohorts of females after the first year of the vaccination campaign. Our survey was carried out from 1st May 2006 to 31st December 2007 and involved 3474 volunteers. We administered a written questionnaire to students (14-24 years) and workers (20-24 years). The median age+/-MAD of the sexual debut was 15+/-1 for both females and males in students group and 16+/-1 for both males and females in workers group. This study provides evidence that many Ligurian adolescents have their first sexual experience at a very early age, and often without protection against sexually transmitted diseases. Furthermore, a large percentage of all age-groups are sexually active and have multiple partners. The aim of this study was to identify those cohorts of females to whom vaccination should be offered free of charge. To this end, we calculated the percentage of infections that could be avoided by vaccination in each age-class: the younger the subjects, the higher the number of preventable infections. Our findings suggest that current HPV vaccination should be implemented by introducing new cohorts, especially young girls (14-16 years).

  6. Spread of plant pathogens and insect vectors at the northern range margin of cypress in Italy

    Zocca, Alessia; Zanini, Corrado; Aimi, Andrea; Frigimelica, Gabriella; La Porta, Nicola; Battisti, Andrea


    The Mediterranean cypress ( Cupressus sempervirens) is a multi-purpose tree widely used in the Mediterranean region. An anthropogenic range expansion of cypress has taken place at the northern margin of the range in Italy in recent decades, driven by ornamental planting in spite of climatic constraints imposed by low winter temperature. The expansion has created new habitats for pathogens and pests, which strongly limit tree survival in the historical (core) part of the range. Based on the enemy release hypothesis, we predicted that damage should be lower in the expansion area. By comparing tree and seed cone damage by pathogens and pests in core and expansion areas of Trentino, a district in the southern Alps, we showed that tree damage was significantly higher in the core area. Seed cones of C. sempervirens are intensively colonized by an aggressive and specific pathogen (the canker fungus Seiridium cardinale, Coelomycetes), associated with seed insect vectors Megastigmus wachtli (Hymenoptera Torymidae) and Orsillus maculatus (Heteroptera Lygaeidae). In contrast, we observed lower tree damage in the expansion area, where a non-aggressive fungus ( Pestalotiopsis funerea, Coelomycetes) was more frequently associated with the same insect vectors. Our results indicate that both insect species have a great potential to reach the range margin, representing a continuous threat of the arrival of fungal pathogens to trees planted at extreme sites. Global warming may accelerate this process since both insects and fungi profit from increased temperature. In the future, cypress planted at the range margin may then face similar pest and pathogen threats as in the historical range.

  7. I caratteri tipicizzanti il paesaggio dei grandi laghi lombardi

    Roberto Busi


    Full Text Available I sei grandi laghi lombardi costituiscono un distretto, posto tra l’alta pianura del Po e le Alpi, con spiccate caratteristiche paesistiche. L’ambiente fisico e biologico (ed, in particolare, la vegetazione e l’opera plurisecolare dell’uomo hanno infatti connotato il territorio con componenti la cui organica giustapposizione manifesta paesaggi che, ad un tempo, hanno forte unitarietà territoriale e spinta individualità. I grandi laghi lombardi costituiscono pertanto un importante patrimonio culturale e paesaggistico che necessita, per la sua conservazione e valorizzazione, di adeguata attenzione e sensibilità.

  8. Social vulnerability in the flood-prone anthropogenic landscape of Northern Italy

    Roder, Giulia; Sofia, Giulia; Wu, Zhifeng; Tarolli, Paolo


    The practices for reducing the impacts of floods are becoming more and more advanced, centred to the communities and reached out to vulnerable populations. Vulnerable individuals are characterised by different social and economic attributes that can alter their capacity to cope with disaster events. The Social Vulnerability Index (Cutter et al. 2003) provides an empirical basis to compare social variances in different spatial scenarios and environmental threats. This methodology has been readjusted to the flood-prone anthropogenic landscape of Northern Italy adapted to the societal and historical construction of this area. In fact, the fifteen census variables used have been contextualised by examining the economic crisis, the modification of the labour force, the gendered life expectancy, the immigration among much more. At a general consideration, the unstable economic status, the population growth, age, and ethnicity are the major social attributes affecting the residents of the floodplain. The cluster analysis performed by the calculation of univariate LISA ratifies the spatial distribution of the index (Moran's I of 0.39 showing a positive correlation) finding the main high-high clusters in the Western and the outlet of the Po River basin. This basin includes one-third of the Italian population and this anthropogenic footprint has consistently modified the basin natural and geological environment (Carminati and Martinelli 2002) to the point that the hydraulic system will be dramatically altered in the future (Dankers and Feyen 2008). The spatial identification and the inclusion of vulnerable people into the risk management planning process have been widely discussed in the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction. For this reason, we analysed the flood risk resulting from the combination of high vulnerable areas with the highest flood hazard scenario. The hazard map, finalised in May 2015, has been provided by ISPRA Institute with a three-class flood

  9. A foetal tile from an archaeological site: anthropological investigation of human remains recovered in a medieval cemetery in Northern Italy.

    Licata, Marta; Rossetti, Chiara; Tosi, Adelaide; Badino, Paola


    The recovery of foetal remains is very sporadic in archaeology, especially due the scarce degree of bone mineralisation. This paper presents the singular archaeological discovery of a foetal tile preserving the bone remains, object of our anthropological examination. The foetal tile was discovered during an archaeological excavation in a medieval site (Northern Italy). The tile was analysed by CT scan and later, human remains were anthropologically examined. The archaeological investigation revealed a special ritual destined to foetuses while forensic anthropological analysis allowed estimating the gestational age near to 21-24 weeks.

  10. Mantle xenoliths from Marosticano area (Northern Italy): a comparison with Veneto Volcanic Province lithospheric mantle

    Brombin, Valentina; Bonadiman, Costanza; Coltorti, Massimo


    redox conditions (Δlog fO2: +1.2 to -0.7, Ballhaus, 1991) to Lessinean and Val d'Adige xenoliths which may indicate a local oxidation of the mantle below this portion of VVP. References • Beccaluva L., Bianchini G., Bonadiman C., Coltorti M., Milani L., Salvini L., Siena F., Tassinari R. (2007). Intraplate lithospheric and sublithospheric components in the Adriatic domain: Nephelinite to tholeiite magma generation in the Paleogene Veneto Volcanic Province, Southern Alps. Geological Society of America, 131-152. • Beccaluva L., Bonadiman C., Coltorti M., Salvini L., Siena F. (2001). Depletion events, nature of metasomatizing agent and timing of enrichment processes in lithospheric mantle xenoliths from the Veneto Volcanic Province. Journal of Petrology, 42, 173-187. • Gasperini D., Bosch D., Braga R., Bondi M., Macera P., Morten L. (2006). Ultramafic xenoliths from the Veneto Volcanic Province (Italy): Petrological and geochemical evidence for multiple metasomatism of the SE Alps mantle lithospere. Geochemical Journal, 40, 377-404. • Siena F., Coltorti M. (1989). Lithospheric mantle evolution: evidences from ultramafic xenoliths in the Lessinean volcanics (Northern Itlay). Chemical Geology, 77, 347-364.

  11. [Appropriateness of indicating aortocoronary bypass and coronary angioplasty: results of an observational prospective study in the Lombardy region. Gruppo Interdisciplinare Valutazione Appropriatezza Rivascolarizzazione Coronarica].

    Valagussa, F; Maggioni, A P; Valagussa, L; Filardo, G; Mura, G; Liberati, A


    Most studies on the appropriateness of cardiac revascularization procedures have been aimed at detecting "overuse" (ie when patients get a procedure without a clear indication), while little attention has been paid yet to "underuse" (when patients who could benefit from a procedure do not get it). This study was planned to assess the extent of over- and underuse of revascularization procedures in northern Italy. A multidisciplinary panel of experts convened by the Italian Association of Hospital Cardiologists (ANMCO) rated the appropriateness of 898 "theoretical indications" for coronary artery by-pass grafting (CABG) and percutaneous transluminal angioplasty (PTCA) using the RAND Corporation methodology. Standardized information has been collected on a consecutive sample of patients in the Lombardy region and identified during performance of a coronary angiogram at one of the services belonging to the GISE (Gruppo Italiano Studi Emodinamica) network. Out of the 2718 consecutive patients undergoing a coronary angiogram during the recruitment period (February-May 1995), a total of 1821 (70%) were eligible for the appropriateness study. Indication for CABG were appropriate in 565 (80%) patients, uncertain in 111 (16%) and inappropriate in 25 (4%). Corresponding values for PTCA were: 40% (n = 262), 46% (n = 300) and 14% (n = 90). Among the 394 to whom a medical therapy was recommended after angiography, the indication was considered appropriated in only 14% (n = 57) and uncertain for 30% (n = 117). For the remaining 220, the indication was considered inappropriate, suggesting that according to the panel criteria, 56% of the patients should have received a revascularization procedure (either a CABG or PTCA) instead. These results suggest that underuse of revascularization procedures represents a substantial health care problem in Lombardy region, at least with reference to the period covered by this study. The study in itself does not make it possible to understand

  12. The 2012 Emilia earthquake in northern Italy: coseismic geological effects within a compressive tectonic framework

    Montone, P.; Alessio, G.; Alfonsi, L.; Brunori, C.; Burrato, P.; Casula, G.; Cinti, F. R.; Civico, R.; Colini, L.; Cucci, L.; De Martini, P. M.; Falcucci, E.; Galadini, F.; Gaudiosi, G.; Gori, S.; Mariucci, M.; Moro, M.; Nappi, R.; Nardi, A.; Nave, R.; Pantosti, D.; Patera, A.; Pesci, A.; Pignone, M.; Pinzi, S.; Pucci, S.; Vannoli, P.; Venuti, A.; Villani, F.


    On May 20 2012 a Ml 5.9 seismic event hit the Emilia Po Plain area (northern Italy) triggering an intense earthquake activity along a broad area of the Plain. Nine days later, on May 29 a Ml 5.8 event occurred roughly 10 km to the SW of the first main shock; these events caused 26 victims and several injured and damages. The aftershock area extended for more than 50 km, in WNW-ESE direction, including five major aftershocks with 5.1≤Ml≤5.3 and more than two thousands of minor events. In general, the seismic sequence was confined in the upper 10 km of depth (ISIDe, The focal mechanisms calculated for the main events and also for several M>4.5 aftershocks are almost all consistent with a compression (P-axes) N-S oriented due to thrust fault mechanisms. The two nodal planes, both E-W oriented, show a 40° southward and 60-70° northward dipping plane (QRCMT, Quick Regional Moment Tensors,, connected with the compressional regime of the area. From a tectonic point of view, the active Apennine thrust fronts, buried under the Po Plain Plio-Quaternary sediments, locally consist of three N-verging arcs. The most external structures, the active Ferrara and Mirandola thrusts and folds are responsible for the Emilia Romagna 2012 earthquake sequence. Just after the 20th May seismic event, the EMERGEO Working Group was active in surveying the epicentral area searching for coseismic geological effects. The survey lasted one month, involving about thirty researchers and technicians of the INGV in field and aerial investigations. Simultaneously, a laboratory-working group gathered, organized and interpreted the observations, processing them in the EMERGEO Information System (siE), on a GIS environment. The most common coseismic effects are: 1) liquefactions related to overpressure of aquifers hosted in buried and confined sand layers, occurring both as single cones or through several aligned vents forming

  13. Density and habitat requirements of sympatric hares and cottontails in northern Italy

    Anna Vidus Rosin


    Full Text Available Abstract From 2005 to 2009, densities and habitat selection by the European hare (Lepus europaeus and Eastern cottontail (Sylvilagus floridanus were assessed during feeding activity in an intensively cultivated area in northern Italy. Hare average density (74 ind./km2 was comparable to the highest values reported for European farming areas. Preand post-breeding density fluctuated widely across the study years, probably as a consequence of changes in the carrying capacity of the study area. Cottontail population size progressively increased, as expected for a recently introduced species supported by high reproductive performances. Hares used both crops and spontaneous vegetation during their feeding activity. Conversely, cottontails avoided winter cereals and preferred to feed on alfalfa. Our results suggest that simplified agro-ecosystems cannot maintain high density hare populations even at a short time scale. Landscape heterogeneity could enhance the chances of coexistence between the two lagomorphs.
    Riassunto Densità ed esigenze ecologiche della lepre e del silvilago in condizioni di simpatria in Italia settentrionale Tra il 2005 e il 2009, la densità e l’uso del habitat durante l’attività di alimentazione da parte della Lepre europea (Lepus europaeus e del Silvilago (Sylvilagus floridanus sono stati indagati in un’area intensamente coltivata nell’Italia settentrionale. La densità media della lepre nell’area di studio (74 ind./km2 corrisponde ai valori maggiori riportati per le aree agricole europee. Le densità pre- e post riproduttive della lepre hanno mostrato sensibili fluttuazioni durante il periodo di studio, probabilmente dovute ai cambiamenti stagionali della capacità portante dell’area di studio. L’abbondanza del silvilago è aumentata durante gli ultimi tre anni di studio, come prevedibile per una

  14. Nitrogen balance in a hilly semi-agricultural watershed in Northern Italy

    Linda Pieri


    Full Text Available The research was carried out for 7 years, 1998-2005, in a semi-agricultural watershed, called Centonara, set within a natural regional park and situated in the hills surrounding Bologna, northern Italy. This area is characterized by one of the most interesting badlands complexes in Europe and represents one of the main points of naturalistic interest. The watershed is partially cultivated (about 30% of the total area with arable crops, mostly cereals and alfalfa. To evaluate the impact of agricultural activity on the eco-sustainability of this area, the nitrogen (N balance was computed. Although it is only an estimation of the potential environmental damage, the nitrogen balance is a useful indicator of the risk posed to the environment from excessive nitrogen and can be useful to understand the possible effects of a certain type of agricultural and environmental management and policy. The balance was calculated by computing the difference between all inputs and all outputs. The nitrogen balance of the watershed was found to be sustainable, with an annual nitrogen balance ranging between –2.3 and +4.4 kg ha–1. Despite the limited presence of arable lands, the agricultural management played the main role in determining the sustainability of the watershed, strongly influencing both the principal N sources and sinks. In fact, major N inputs derived from inorganic fertilization (8.1-15.5 kg ha–1yr–1 and biological fixation (8.3-14.3 kg ha–1yr–1. On the other hand, plant removal constituted the most important output (17.7-25.6 kg ha–1yr–1. N losses in the drainage water were limited (3.0-9.5 kg ha–1yr–1 and the Centonara stream water was found to be unpolluted, with a nitrate concentration always below the EU limit for drinking water. The similar magnitude of total N inputs and outputs indicated that the crop management, especially the crop rotation and the N fertilization, in the Centonara watershed has reached a good level of

  15. Interdisciplinary approach for disaster risk reduction in Valtellina Valley, northern Italy

    Garcia, Carolina; Blahut, Jan; Luna, Byron Quan; Poretti, Ilaria; Camera, Corrado; de Amicis, Mattia; Sterlacchini, Simone


    Inside the framework of the European research network Mountain Risks, an interdisciplinary research group has been working in the Consortium of Mountain Municipalities of Valtellina di Tirano (northern Italy). This area has been continuously affected by several mountain hazards such as landslides, debris flows and floods that directly affect the population, and in some cases caused several deaths and million euros of losses. An aim of the interdisciplinary work in this study area, is to integrate different scientific products of the research group, in the areas of risk assessment, management and governance, in order to generate, among others, risk reduction tools addressed to general public and stakeholders. Two types of phenomena have been particularly investigated: debris flows and floods. The scientific products range from modeling to mapping of hazard and risk, emergency planning based on real time decision support systems, surveying for the evaluation of risk perception and preparedness, among others. Outputs from medium scale hazard and risk modeling could be used for decision makers and spatial planners as well as civil protection authorities to have a general overview of the area and indentify hot spots for further detailed analysis. Subsequently, local scale analysis is necessary to define possible events and risk scenarios for emergency planning. As for the modeling of past events and new scenarios of debris flows, physical outputs were used as inputs into physical vulnerability assessment and quantitative risk analysis within dynamic runout models. On a pilot zone, the physical damage was quantified for each affected structure within the context of physical vulnerability and different empirical vulnerability curves were obtained. Prospective economic direct losses were estimated. For floods hazard assessment, different approaches and models are being tested, in order to produce flood maps for various return periods, and related to registered rainfalls

  16. Siderite deposits in northern Italy: Early Permian to Early Triassic hydrothermalism in the Southern Alps

    Martin, Silvana; Toffolo, Luca; Moroni, Marilena; Montorfano, Carlo; Secco, Luciano; Agnini, Claudia; Nimis, Paolo; Tumiati, Simone


    We present a minero-petrographic, geochemical and geochronological study of siderite orebodies from different localities of the Southern Alps (northern Italy). Siderite occurs as veins cutting the Variscan basement and the overlying Lower Permian volcano-sedimentary cover (Collio Fm.), and as both veins and conformable stratabound orebodies in the Upper Permian (Verrucano Lombardo and Bellerophon Fms.) and Lower Triassic (Servino and Werfen Fms.) sedimentary sequences of the Lombardian and the Venetian Alps. All types of deposits show similar major- and rare-earth (REE)-element patterns, suggesting a common iron-mineralizing event. The compositions of coexisting siderite, Fe-rich dolomite and calcite suggest formation from hydrothermal fluids at relatively high temperature conditions (≥ 250 °C). Geochemical modelling, supported by REE analyses and by literature and new δ13C and δ18O isotopic data, suggests that fluids responsible for the formation of siderite in the Variscan basement and in the overlying Lower Permian cover were derived from dominant fresh water, which leached Fe and C from volcanic rocks (mainly rhyolites/rhyodacites) and organic carbon-bearing continental sediments. On the basis of U-Th-Pb microchemical dating of uraninite associated with siderite in the Val Vedello and Novazza deposits (Lombardian Alps), the onset of hydrothermalism is constrained to 275 ± 13 Ma (Early-Mid Permian), i.e., it was virtually contemporaneous to the plutonism and the volcanic-sedimentary cycle reported in the same area (Orobic Basin). The youngest iron-mineralizing event is represented by siderite veins and conformable orebodies hosted in Lower Triassic shallow-marine carbonatic successions. In this case, the siderite-forming fluids contained a seawater component, interacted with the underlying Permian successions and eventually replaced the marine carbonates at temperatures of ≥ 250 °C. The absence of siderite in younger rocks suggests an Early Triassic

  17. Seasonal trends and environmental controls of methane emissions in a rice paddy field in Northern Italy

    A. Meijide


    Full Text Available Rice paddy fields are one of the greatest anthropogenic sources of methane (CH4, the third most important greenhouse gas after water vapour and carbon dioxide. In agricultural fields, CH4 is usually measured with the closed chamber technique, resulting in discontinuous series of measurements performed over a limited area, that generally do not provide sufficient information on the short-term variation of the fluxes. On the contrary, aerodynamic techniques have been rarely applied for the measurement of CH4 fluxes in rice paddy fields. The eddy covariance (EC technique provides integrated continuous measurements over a large area and may increase our understanding of the underlying processes and diurnal and seasonal pattern of CH4 emissions in this ecosystem.

    For this purpose a Fast Methane Analyzer (Los Gatos Research Ltd. was installed in an eddy-covariance field set-up in a rice paddy field in the Po Valley (Northern Italy. Methane fluxes were measured during the rice growing season, both with EC and with manually operated closed chambers. Methane fluxes were strongly influenced by the presence of the water table, with emissions peaking when it was above 10–12 cm. Further studies are required to evaluate if water table management could decrease CH4 emissions. The development of rice plants and soil temperature were also responsible of the seasonal variation on the fluxes. The EC measured showed a diurnal cycle in the emissions, which was more relevant during the vegetative period, and with CH4 emissions being higher in the late evening, possibly associated with higher water temperature. The comparison between both measurement techniques shows that greater fluxes are measured with the chambers, especially when higher fluxes are being produced, resulting in 30 % higher seasonal estimations with the chambers than with the EC (41.1 and 31.8 g CH4 m−2

  18. Seasonal trends and environmental controls of methane emissions in a rice paddy field in Northern Italy

    A. Meijide


    Full Text Available Rice paddy fields are one of the greatest anthropogenic sources of methane (CH4, the third most important greenhouse gas after water vapour and carbon dioxide. In agricultural fields, CH4 is usually measured with the closed chamber technique, resulting in discontinuous series of measurements performed over a limited area, that generally do not provide sufficient information on the short-term variation of the fluxes. On the contrary, aerodynamic techniques have been rarely applied for the measurement of CH4 fluxes in rice paddy fields. The eddy covariance (EC technique provides integrated continuous measurements over a large area and may increase our understanding of the underlying processes and diurnal and seasonal pattern of CH4 emissions in this ecosystem.

    For this purpose a Fast Methane Analyzer (Los Gatos Research Ltd. was installed in a rice paddy field in the Po Valley (Northern Italy. Methane fluxes were measured during the rice growing season with both EC and manually operated closed chambers. Methane fluxes were strongly influenced by the height of the water table, with emissions peaking when it was above 10–12 cm. Soil temperature and the developmental stage of rice plants were also responsible of the seasonal variation on the fluxes. The measured EC fluxes showed a diurnal cycle in the emissions, which was more relevant during the vegetative period, and with CH4 emissions being higher in the late evening, possibly associated with higher water temperature. The comparison between the two measurement techniques shows that greater fluxes are measured with the chambers, especially when higher fluxes are being produced, resulting in 30 % higher seasonal estimations with the chambers than with the EC (41.1 and 31.7 g CH4 m−2 measured with chambers and EC respectively and even greater differences are found if shorter periods with high chamber sampling

  19. Seasonal monitoring and estimation of regional aerosol distribution over Po valley, northern Italy, using a high-resolution MAIAC product

    Arvani, Barbara; Pierce, R. Bradley; Lyapustin, Alexei I.; Wang, Yujie; Ghermandi, Grazia; Teggi, Sergio


    In this work, the new 1 km-resolved Multi-Angle Implementation of Atmospheric Correction (MAIAC) algorithm is employed to characterize seasonal PM10 - AOD correlations over northern Italy. The accuracy of the new dataset is assessed compared to the widely used Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) Collection 5.1 Aerosol Optical Depth (AOD) data, retrieved at 0.55 μm with spatial resolution of 10 km (MYD04_L2). We focused on evaluating the ability of these two products to characterize both temporal and spatial distributions of aerosols within urban and suburban areas. Ground PM10 measurements were obtained from 73 of the Italian Regional Agency for Environmental Protection (ARPA) monitoring stations, spread across northern Italy, during a three-year period from 2010 to 2012. The Po Valley area (northern Italy) was chosen as the study domain because of its severe urban air pollution, resulting from it having the highest population and industrial manufacturing density in the country, being located in a valley where two surrounding mountain chains favor the stagnation of pollutants. We found that the global correlations between the bin-averaged PM10 and AOD are R2 = 0.83 and R2 = 0.44 for MYD04_L2 and for MAIAC, respectively, suggesting a greater sensitivity of the high-resolution product to small-scale deviations. However, the introduction of Relative Humidity (RH) and Planetary Boundary Layer (PBL) depth corrections allowed for a significant improvement to the bin-averaged PM - AOD correlation, which led to a similar performance: R2 = 0.96 for MODIS and R2 = 0.95 for MAIAC. Furthermore, the introduction of the PBL information in the corrected AOD values was found to be crucial in order to capture the clear seasonal cycle shown by measured PM10 values. The study allowed us to define four seasonal linear correlations that estimate PM10 concentrations satisfactorily from the remotely sensed MAIAC AOD retrieval. Overall, the results show that the high

  20. West Nile Virus Surveillance in 2013 via Mosquito Screening in Northern Italy and the Influence of Weather on Virus Circulation.

    Mattia Calzolari

    Full Text Available West Nile virus (WNV is a recently re-emerged health problem in Europe. In Italy, an increasing number of outbreaks of West Nile disease, with occurrences of human cases, have been reported since 2008. This is particularly true in northern Italy, where entomological surveillance systems have been implemented at a regional level. The aim of this study was to use, for the first time, all the entomological data collected in the five regions undergoing surveillance for WNV in northern Italy to characterize the viral circulation (at a spatial and temporal scale, identify potential mosquito vectors, and specify relationships between virus circulation and meteorological conditions. In 2013, 286 sites covering the entire Pianura Padana area were monitored. A total of 757,461 mosquitoes were sampled. Of these, 562,079 were tested by real-time PCR in 9,268 pools, of which 180 (1.9% were positive for WNV. The largest part of the detected WNV sequences belonged to lineage II, demonstrating that, unlike those in the past, the 2013 outbreak was mainly sustained by this WNV lineage. This surveillance also detected the Usutu virus, a WNV-related flavivirus, in 241 (2.6% pools. The WNV surveillance systems precisely identified the area affected by the virus and detected the viral circulation approximately two weeks before the occurrence of onset of human cases. Ninety percent of the sampled mosquitoes were Culex pipiens, and 178/180 WNV-positive pools were composed of only this species, suggesting this mosquito is the main WNV vector in northern Italy. A significantly higher abundance of the vector was recorded in the WNV circulation area, which was characterized by warmer and less rainy conditions and greater evapotranspiration compared to the rest of the Pianura Padana, suggesting that areas exposed to these conditions are more suitable for WNV circulation. This observation highlights warmer and less rainy conditions as factors able to enhance WNV circulation

  1. Cat-scratch disease in Northern Italy: atypical clinical manifestations in humans and prevalence of Bartonella infection in cats.

    Brunetti, E; Fabbi, M; Ferraioli, G; Prati, P; Filice, C; Sassera, D; Dalla Valle, C; Bandi, C; Vicari, N; Marone, P


    In this paper, we report an investigation on cat-scratch disease (CSD) in Northern Italy. Seventy-four cases of CSD were diagnosed at the San Matteo hospital, Pavia, during the period 2005-2010. Of these 74 patients, 18 (24.3 %) reported atypical clinical manifestations such as ocular papillitis, maculopapular eruptions, vertebral infection, pulmonary infiltrates, and granulomatous hepatitis. Contact with cats was documented for 61 patients (82.4 %), while cat-related trauma was reported for 49 patients (66.2 %). We subsequently investigated the presence of Bartonella infection in cats belonging to the above patients and in other domestic and stray cats from three provinces of Northern Italy. Among the 27 domestic cats tested, nine of the 11 belonging to the CSD patients and two of the remaining 16 were infected by B. henselae (81.8 % vs. 12.5 %). Out of over 1,300 stray cats examined, 23.1 % were seropositive for B. henselae; after culturing and genotyping, 17 % were found to be infected by B. henselae (15.5 %) or B. clarridgeiae (1.5 %).

  2. Serological and Molecular Evaluation of Leishmania infantum Infection in Stray Cats in a Nonendemic Area in Northern Italy

    Spada, Eva; Proverbio, Daniela; Migliazzo, Antonella; Della Pepa, Alessandra; Perego, Roberta; Bagnagatti De Giorgi, Giada


    Infection by Leishmania species is increasing worldwide. It was hypothesized recently that cats act as a secondary reservoir for Leishmania infection. The aim of the present study was to assess the prevalence of Leishmania infantum antibodies and DNA in blood samples collected in a sample of stray cats in metropolitan area of Milan in northern Italy, which is a nonendemic area for leishmaniasis. An indirect immunofluorescence antibody test for L. infantum showed that 59 of 233 cats (25.3%) were seroreactive, 38 samples (16.3%) had antibody titers of 1 : 40, 15 (6.4%) had antibody titers of 1 : 80, and 6 (2.6%) had antibody titers of 1 : 160. Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) seropositive status was statistically associated with seroreactivity to L. infantum (P = 0.01) as shown by univariate and multivariate logistic regression (P = 0.0098; OR = 7.34). All blood samples that were tested using real-time PCR were negative for parasite DNA. These results were surprising, since no autochthonous human or canine cases of leishmaniasis have ever been reported in this region of northern Italy. It is possible that this high seroreactivity to L. infantum could be due to cross-reaction with antigens from other parasites. Additional studies that include parasite isolation are needed to clarify our findings on feline leishmaniasis in this region. PMID:27335864

  3. The diet of the fox (Vulpes vulpes in woodlands of Orobie Alps (Lombardy region, Northern Italy / Alimentazione della Volpe (Vulpes vulpes in aree boscate delle Alpi Orobie

    Marco Cantini


    Full Text Available Abstract The diet of the fox was investigated by analysis of 273 scats, collected along standard trails from April to November 1987 and 1988. Food habits of foxes were described for three altitudinal ranges. Mammals, mainly Clethrionomys glareolus and Microtus multiplex, were the staple food (percentage of frequency 42.8%, followed by fruits and other vegetables (26.7% and 37.3% respectively. Birds, Invertebrates (mainly Insects and garbage were little eaten. The game species (ungulates, hares, pheasants occurred with a low frequency (8.4% in the diet. The trophic niche breadth varied little through the altitudinal ranges and the seasons. The trophic niche overlap between the fox and the genus Martes (190 scats of M. martes and M. foina were examined is relatively wide (O=0.868. Riassunto La dieta della Volpe (Vulpes vulpes in aree boscate delle Alpi Orobie (Val Lesina è stata indagata nel periodo aprile-novembre 1987 e 1988 mediante l'analisi di 273 feci, raccolte lungo percorsi-campione ricadenti in tre piani vegetazionali. I Mammiferi, in particolare Clethrionomys glareolus e Microtus multiplex, sono la componente principale della dieta (frequenza percentuale 42,8%. Rilevante è anche il consumo di frutti (soprattutto in estate e autunno e di altri vegetali (26,7% e 37,3% rispettivamente, mentre poco frequente è quello di Uccelli, Invertebrati e rifiuti. Complessivamente ridotta è l'azione predatoria della Volpe nei confronti delle specie di interesse venatorio (Ungulati, lepri, Galliformi. L'ampiezza della nicchia trofica mostra modeste variazioni stagionali e altitudinali. I1 grado di sovrapposizione tra la nicchia trofica della Volpe e quella del genere Martes, quest'ultima ricavata dall'analisi di 190 feci di Martora (M. martes e Faina (M. foina, è elevato (O=0,868. Tuttavia, poiché in condizioni di simpatria le due specie di Mustelidi tendono a ridurre la competizione interspecifica differenziando le relative nicchie trofiche, tale sovrapposizione può essere solo apparente.

  4. From northern Gondwana passive margin to arc dismantling: a geochemical discrimination of Ordovician volcanisms (Sardinia, Italy)

    Gaggero, L.; Oggiano, G.; Buzzi, L.; Funedda, A.


    -sardic Ordovician sequence in south-west Sardinia. Bollettino della Società Paleontologica Italiana, 30, 201-235. Oggiano G., Gaggero L., Funedda A., Buzzi L., Different Early Palaeozoic volcanic events at the northern Gondwana margin: U-Pb age evidence from the Southern Variscan branch (Sardinia, Italy). Pin C., Lancelot J. (1982) U-Pb Dating of an Early Paleozoic Bimodal Magmatism in the French Massif Central and of Its Further Metamorphic Evolution. Contrib. Mineral. Petrol., 79, 1-12. Pin C., Marini F. (1993) Early Ordovician continental break-up in Variscan Europe: Nd-Sr isotope and trace element evidence from bimodal igneous associations of the Southern Massif Central, France. Lithos, 29, 177-196. Sánchez-García T., Bellido F., Quesada C. 2003. Geodynamic setting and geochemical signatures of Cambrian - Ordovician rift-related igneous rocks (Ossa-Morena Zone, SW Iberia). Tectonophysics, 365, 233-255. von Raumer J.F., Stampfli G.M., Bussy F. (2003) Gondwana-derived microcontinents — the constituents of the Variscan and Alpine collisional orogens. Tectonophysics, 365, 7-22.

  5. Multidisciplinary approach to evaluate landslide susceptibility along highway in northern Calabria, Italy

    Muto, Francesco; Conforti, Massimo; Critelli, Salvatore; Fabbricatore, Davide; Filomena, Luciana; Rago, Valeria; Robustelli, Gaetano; Scarciglia, Fabio; Versace, Pasquale


    The interaction of landslides with linear infrastructures is often the cause of disasters. In Italy landslide impact on roads, railways and buildings cause millions of Euro per year in damage and restoration as well. The proposed study is aimed to the landslide susceptibility evaluation using a multidisciplinary approach: geological and geomorphological survey, statistical analysis and GIS technique, along a section of highway "A3 (Salerno-Reggio Calabria)" between Cosenza Sud and Altilia, northern Calabria. This study is included in a wider research project, named: PON01-01503, Landslides Early Warning-Sistemi integrati per il monitoraggio e la mitigazione del rischio idrogeologico lungo le grandi vie di comunicazione - aimed at the hydrogeological risk mitigation and at the early warning along the highways. The work was first based on air-photo interpretations and field investigations, in order to realize the geological map, geomorphological map and landslide inventory map. In the study area the geomorphology is strongly controlled by its bedrock geology and tectonics. The bedrock geology consists of Neogene sedimentary rocks that cover a thick stack of allochthonous nappes. These nappes consist of crystalline rocks mainly gneiss, phyllite and schist. A total of 835 landslides were mapped and the type of movement are represented mainly by slides and complex and subordinately flow. In order to estimate and validate landslide susceptibility the landslides were divided in two group. One group (training set) was used to prepare susceptibility map and the second group (validation set) to validate the map. Then, the selection of predisposing factors was performed, according with the geological and geomorphological settings of the study area: lithology, distance from tectonic elements, land use, slope, aspect, stream power index (SPI) and plan curvature. In order to evaluate landslide susceptibility Conditional Analysis was applied to Unique Conditions Units (UCUs

  6. Soil organic carbon and land use in Veneto and Friuli Venezia Giulia (Northern Italy)

    Francaviglia, Rosa; Renzi, Gianluca; Benedetti, Anna


    The Italian Ministry of Agricultural Food and Forestry Policies (MiPAAF) has set up a statistical survey aimed to provide the national forecast of yields and areas related to the main Italian agricultural crops (AGRIT). The methodology is based on field surveys and remote-sensed data, covers yearly the whole national territory, and is based on 100,000 observations which are statistically selected from a predefined grid made up of about 1,200,000 georeferenced points. In 2011-2012 we determined the soil organic carbon content (SOC) of 1,160 sampling points situated in Northern Italy in the plains and hills of Veneto (VEN) and Friuli Venezia Giulia (FVG), for which the land use in the period 2008-2010 was known. Samples have been subdivided in three main classes: arable crops, orchards and fodder crops. SOC was higher in FVG samples (2.48%, n=266) than in VEN samples (1.90%, n=894). The average value (2.03%) is clearly affected by the higher number of VEN samples. FVG data have been aggregated in continuous crops (maize, soybean, wheat), 2-yr rotations (maize-wheat, soybean wheat, maize-soybean), 3-yr rotations, vineyards (totally, partially and no-grassed), alfalfa, and permanent fodder crops. No significant differences were detected among the land uses due to the low number of samples in some classes, but some important findings do exist from the agronomic point of view. Fodder crops (5.65%), alfalfa (3.41%) and vineyards (2.72%) showed the higher SOC content. SOC was 2.94% and 1.39 % in the grassed and no-grassed vineyards respectively. In the arable crops the average SOC was 2.18%, ranging from 2.32% (soybean-wheat rotation) to 2.03% (continuous soybean). SOC was 2.19% in the continuous maize, with 2.23% in corn and 1.87% in silage maize. The lower values were in the maize-wheat rotation (1.53%) and the continuous wheat (1.47%). VEN data have been aggregated in continuous crops (maize, soybean and wheat), 2-yr rotations (maize-wheat, soybean-wheat, maize

  7. Age and speleogenesis of epigenic gypsum caves in the northern Apennines (Italy)

    Columbu, Andrea; Chiarini, Veronica; De Waele, Jo; Drysdale, Russell; Forti, Paolo; Hellstrom, John; Woodhead, Jon


    Triassic and Messinian gypsum beds host the majority of the caves in the eastern flank of the northern Apennines. To date, more than six hundreds voids have been mapped, including the longest known epigenic gypsum cave system in the world (Spipola-Acquafredda, ~11 km of tunnels) (De Waele et al., 2013). Superimposed caves are typically sub-horizontal (Klimchouk, 2000) and connected through vertical shafts, reflecting the palaeo base-level variations. When preserved, river terraces at the surface lie at the same palaeo altitude of the base level and horizontal cave passages. Notwithstanding the well-known geology of the area known (Vai and Martini, 2001), the age of these caves has been greatly underestimated in the past. Considering the rapid dissolution of the gypsum and uplifting of the area, the start of speleogenesis activity was considered to have occurred during the last glacial age. The age of karst voids can be only indirectly estimated by the dating of the infilling sediments. U-Th dating on carbonate speleothems provides high-precision and accurate ages (Hellstrom, 2003; Scholz and Hoffmann, 2008). We thus applied this methodology to 20 speleothems coming from 14 different caves belonging to the Monte Tondo, Spipola Acquafredda, Castelnuovo, Stella-Rio Basino and Brisighella systems. The results show that: i) caves were forming since at least ~300 ka; ii) the peak of speleogenesis was reached during relatively cold climate stages, when rivers formed terraces at the surface and aggradation caused paragenesis in the stable cave levels (Columbu et al., 2015). Besides the significant contribution to the understanding of the Apennines evaporite karst evolution, this study (and its further advancement) may also refine knowledge of the local vs regional uplifting rates and base-level variations since the late Pleistocene (Wegmann and Pazzaglia, 2009). References Columbu, A., De Waele, J., Forti, P., Montagna, P., Picotti, V., Pons-Branchu, E., Hellstrom, J

  8. Chrysotile asbestos quantification in serpentinite quarries: a case study in Valmalenco, central Alps, northern Italy

    Cavallo, Alessandro


    Outcrops of serpentinites are usually strongly fractured and cataclastic, and the rock can only be used as ballast. However, in rare cases, like in Valmalenco (Central Alps, Northern Italy), fractures are regular and well spaced, and the rock mass has good geotechnical quality, ideal conditions for the extraction of dimension stone blocks. The Valmalenco Serpentinite is marketed worldwide as dimension and decorative stone, with remarkable mechanical properties and pleasing colours and textures. However, the same area was once subject to chrysotile asbestos mining, in the form of discrete veins along the main discontinuities of the rock mass. For this reason, airborne asbestos contamination can occur during the extraction and processing cycle of the rocks, therefore it is essential to locate and quantify asbestos in the rock mass, to reduce as much as possible the exposure risk. The first step was a detailed geostructural survey of each quarry, in order to characterize the main discontinuities (orientation, spacing, linear persistence, opening, filling), with special attention to the identification of fibrous minerals. The surveys was followed by extensive sampling of massive rocks, mineralized veins and fillings of fractures, and the cutting sludge derived from diamond wire cutting. Preliminary qualitative XRPD was performed on all samples, while quantitative analysis was carried out on the most representative samples of the main rock mass discontinuities. On the other hand, XRPD is not effective in the identification of asbestos percentages of less than 2% by weight, and the accurate distinction among the various serpentine polymorphs (antigorite, lizardite, chrysotile) is very difficult (if not impossible) when they are simultaneously present, due to their very similar basic structure and the strong structural disorder. The same samples were then analyzed by SEM-EDS (fiber counting after filtration on a polycarbonate filter), for a better distinction between

  9. The atmospheric degradation of a durable lithotype used in Northern Italy: the Oira stone

    Toniolo, Lucia; Bugini, Roberto; Gulotta, Davide


    The cathedral of Monza is a masterpiece of the northern Italian architectural heritage dated at the beginning of the XIV century. Its façade was modified over time as a result of the variation of the general plan and its current appearance is defined by six main pillars which identify five sectors, the central one hosting the main portal and a huge rose window. All the architectural elements and sculptures were realized in stone using several and different local lithotypes, including marbles, limestones, sandstones and volcanic stones. One of the most distinctive hallmarks of the façade is the alternated presence of rows of white and dark stones for the flat blocks which cover the masonry. Originally, the white rows were realized with different types of whitish marbles, whereas the dark ones were made by Varenna stone, a local black sedimentary rock. Unfortunately, this stone type extensively deteriorated as a result of the outdoor exposition and it was therefore completely substituted with blocks of dark green-coloured Oira stone during the restoration of the façade carried out at the end of XIX century by the famous architect Luca Beltrami [1]. Pietra d'Oira is a dark green peridotite, with olivine crystals partly altered to serpentine and pertains to Metabasites embedded in gneiss and micaschist of Strona - Ceneri zone (late Palaeozoic) and outcrops on the western shore of lake Orta (North-western Piedmont) near the Oira village. In the early XX century, Pietra d'Oira replaced some stone by then badly decayed as Triassic black limestone from several quarry sites of Prealps or dark grey limestone from Saltrio quarries. Several buildings were involved in these restoration works: the façade of the Church of Certosa (Pavia, XV century), Cappella Colleoni (Bergamo, last quarter of XV century) and, as reported, the façade of the Monza cathedral. The present paper reports the study of the degradation of the Oira stone exposed to outdoor atmospheric conditions

  10. Sources of high PM2.5 concentrations in Milan, Northern Italy: molecular marker data and CMB modelling.

    Perrone, M G; Larsen, B R; Ferrero, L; Sangiorgi, G; De Gennaro, G; Udisti, R; Zangrando, R; Gambaro, A; Bolzacchini, E


    In Milan (MI), the largest city in Northern Italy, the annually average PM2.5 concentration is above 25 μg m(-3), the value that the EU established as a target for 2010, and the upper limit from 2015 onwards (2008/30/CE). Over a three-year period (2006-2009) PM concentrations and chemical compositions were measured in an urban site (MI), a rural site (OB) and a remote site (ASC) in Northern Italy. Chemical characterization (EC/OC, inorganic ions, elements, C20-C32 n-alkanes, C2-C5 mono and dicarboxylic acids, levoglucosan and PAHs) was carried out on PM2.5 samples from the three sites, and PM10 from MI. Molecular markers were used in Chemical Mass Balance (CMB) modelling to estimate the contributions of primary sources to OC, and then PM mass from each source was reconstructed in MI, OB and ASC for different seasons. Estimates of the traffic (TR) source contribution to PM2.5 mass ranged from 4.1 (± 2.0) μg m(-3) during the summer, to 13.3 (± 6.7) μg m(-3) during the winter in MI. TR was the main primary source for PM2.5 concentrations in MI (17-24%). Its contribution was lower at the OB site (7-9%) and at the remote ASC site (3-4%). TR is a local source, while biomass burning (BB) is a diffuse regional source in Northern Italy: during fall and winter, BB was 25-30% and 27-31% of PM2.5 at MI and OB respectively. Other primary sources accounted for a small amount of the PM2.5, i.e. natural gas combustion (0-1%), plant debris (0-4%), road dust (RD=0-4%; but 15% at ASC during winter and 10% of PM10 at MI during summer) and sea salt (0-1%). Secondary inorganic+organic aerosol constituted the major part of the PM2.5 mass during spring and summer (50-65%) at the three sites.

  11. Full-length genomic analysis of porcine rotavirus strains isolated from pigs with diarrhea in Northern Italy.

    Monini, Marina; Zaccaria, Guendalina; Ianiro, Giovanni; Lavazza, Antonio; Vaccari, Gabriele; Ruggeri, Franco M


    Group A rotaviruses (RVA) cause acute dehydrating diarrhea in young of man and many animal species, including pigs. Swine RVA has an important economic impact on the farming industry, and pigs represent a potential reservoir for zoonotic transmission of RVA to humans. To investigate the genetic diversity of porcine RVA strains in Italy and identify their possible zoonotic characteristics, 25 RVA-positive feces were collected from diarrheic pigs in Northern Italy, in 2009-2010; all viral strains were characterized by G and P genotyping RT-PCR. Three samples were selected for full genome sequencing. Sequencing of the NSP3 genes of all samples was also performed. Rotavirus diagnosis was carried out by ELISA and electron microscopy. RT-PCR and Sanger sequencing were performed in a one-tube format, using primer sets specific for each of the 11 genome segments. Analysis of the G (VP7) and P (VP4) genotypes showed that all strains identified were typical porcine RVAs (G4, G5, G9; P[6], P[13], P[23]). Full-length genome sequencing was performed on selected G9 isolates. Most segments belonged to the genotype constellation 1 (Wa-like), which is shared by most human RVA strains, but gene types such as I5 (VP6) and A8 (NSP1), which are typical of porcine and rare among human RVAs, were also detected. We identified RVA strains showing the T7 genotype, an NSP3 gene type that was previously reported in unusual strains of possible porcine or bovine origin from children with diarrhea. Recent reports suggested that G9 RVA may have been introduced from swine to human populations involving gene reassortment events. The observation that some of the RVA genotypes from swine in Italy were similar to viruses characterized in children underlines the importance of animal RVA surveillance, to clarify and monitor the role of animals as genetic reservoirs of emerging RVA strains pathogenic for humans.

  12. The seismic microzonation of level 3 of Sant’Agata Fossili (northern Italy based on a multidisciplinary approach

    Giuseppe Di Capua


    Full Text Available In this paper the results of a detailed seismic microzonation, performed at Sant’Agata Fossili (Piemonte region, northern Italy are presented. We study the local seismic response of this small village using a level 3, that is the most accurate level following the Italian code of seismic microzonation. The activity steps consist in a gradual widening of knowledge of the different aspects of the amplification phenomena. A multidisciplinary approach has been performed to obtain the local seismic response: including a study of local geology, geophysical and geotechnical characterization of the lithologies, and numerical and experimental analyses. We finally compare the obtained elastic response spectra to the prescribed spectra of the Italian Building Code (in Italian: Norme Tecniche per le Costruzioni. Our results show the geologic and geophysical differences of the subsoil, that produce different local seismic response in terms of amplification factors and acceleration response spectra.

  13. Use of a proactive herd management system in a dairy farm of northern italy: technical and economic results

    Stefania Leonardi


    Full Text Available Reproductive and economic data were recorded before and one year after the installation of Herd Navigator™ in a dairy farm with AMS (Automatic Milking System located in a mountain area of Northern Italy. Number of days open reduced from 166 to 103 days, number of days between the first and second insemination decreased from 45 to 28 days, and days for identifying an abortion were 80 % less, from 31 to 6 days. The preliminary results highlight the usefulness of the proactive herd management system installed for the reproduction management. A basic economic model is proposed to evaluate the potential economic benefits coming from the introduction of this technology. The model considers the benefits deriving from the reduction of reproduction problems and, consequently, of days open. Considering the effects related to the above mentioned aspects in a case study involving 60 dairy cows, a return on investment over 5 years has been calculated.

  14. LDL (Landscape Digital Library) a Digital Photographic Database of a Case Study Area in the River Po Valley, Northern Italy

    Papotti, D


    Landscapes are both a synthesis and an expression of national, regional and local cultural heritages. It is therefore very important to develop techniques aimed at cataloguing and archiving their forms. This paper discusses the LDL (Landscape Digital Library) project, a Web accessible database that can present the landscapes of a territory with documentary evidence in a new format and from a new perspective. The method was tested in a case study area of the river Po valley (Northern Italy). The LDL is based on a collection of photographs taken following a systematic grid of survey points identified through topographic cartography; the camera level is that of the human eye. This methodology leads to an innovative landscape archive that differs from surveys carried out through aerial photographs or campaigns aimed at selecting "relevant" points of interest. Further developments and possible uses of the LDL are also discussed.

  15. Evaluation of the field dissipation of fungicides and insecticides used on fruit bearing trees in northern Italy.

    Passarella, Iride; Elia, Irene; Guarino, Barbara; Bourlot, Giancarlo; Nègre, Michèle


    The dissipation of the fungicides captan, cyprodinil, fludioxonil, dithianon, and tebuconazole and of the insecticides chlorpyrifos, fenitrothion, and malathion was studied, following a single treatment of different cultivars of pears, apples, and peaches. The study was conducted in northern Italy, over two successive growing seasons (2004 and 2005). The treatments were performed by the farmers involved, in line with their usual practice. At various time intervals from treatment to harvest, representative samples of fruit were collected and analyzed for pesticide residues. In some cases, concentrations lower than the maximum residue levels (MRLs) were found immediately after treatment. In all trials a rapid decline in pesticide concentrations was observed leading to residues at harvest greatly below the MRLs.

  16. Ecological preference of the diving bell spider Argyroneta aquatica in a resurgence of the Po plain (Northern Italy (Araneae: Cybaeidae

    Stefano Mammola


    Full Text Available The diving bell spider Argyroneta aquatica is the only known spider to conduct a wholly aquatic life. For this reason, it has been the object of an array of studies concerning different aspects of its peculiar biology such as reproductive behavior and sexual dimorphism, physiology, genetic and silk. On the other hand, besides some empirical observations, the autoecology of this spider is widely understudied. We conducted an ecological study in a resurgence located in the Po Plain (Northern Italy, Province of Vercelli hosting a relatively rich population of Argyroneta aquatica, aiming at identifying the ecological factors driving its presence at the micro-habitat level. By means of a specific sampling methodology, we acquired distributional data of the spiders in the study area and monitored physical-chemical and habitat structure parameters at each plot. We analyzed the data through Bernoulli Generalized Linear Models (GLM. Results pointed out a significant positive effect of the presence of aquatic vegetation in the plot. In addition, the presence of A. aquatica was significantly associated with areas of the resurgence characterized at the same time by high prey availability and low density of predators. Considering the ecological importance and rarity of this species, we update and revise the data on the distribution of A. aquatica in Italy.

  17. Rainfall thresholds for the possible occurrence of landslides in Italy

    M. T. Brunetti


    Full Text Available In Italy, rainfall is the primary trigger of landslides that frequently cause fatalities and large economic damage. Using a variety of information sources, we have compiled a catalogue listing 753 rainfall events that have resulted in landslides in Italy. For each event in the catalogue, the exact or approximate location of the landslide and the time or period of initiation of the slope failure is known, together with information on the rainfall duration D, and the rainfall mean intensity I, that have resulted in the slope failure. The catalogue represents the single largest collection of information on rainfall-induced landslides in Italy, and was exploited to determine the minimum rainfall conditions necessary for landslide occurrence in Italy, and in the Abruzzo Region, central Italy. For the purpose, new national rainfall thresholds for Italy and new regional rainfall thresholds for the Abruzzo Region were established, using two independent statistical methods, including a Bayesian inference method and a new Frequentist approach. The two methods proved complementary, with the Bayesian method more suited to analyze small data sets, and the Frequentist method performing better when applied to large data sets. The new regional thresholds for the Abruzzo Region are lower than the new national thresholds for Italy, and lower than the regional thresholds proposed in the literature for the Piedmont and Lombardy Regions in northern Italy, and for the Campania Region in southern Italy. This is important, because it shows that landslides in Italy can be triggered by less severe rainfall conditions than previously recognized. The Frequentist method experimented in this work allows for the definition of multiple minimum rainfall thresholds, each based on a different exceedance probability level. This makes the thresholds suited for the design of probabilistic schemes for the prediction of rainfall-induced landslides. A scheme based on four

  18. Profile of Trypanosoma cruzi infection in a tropical medicine reference center, Northern Italy.

    Federico Gobbi


    Full Text Available Chagas disease (CD is endemic in Central and South America, Mexico and even in some areas of the United States. However, cases have been increasingly recorded also in non-endemic countries. The estimated number of infected people in Europe is in a wide range of 14000 to 181000 subjects, mostly resident in Spain, Italy and the United Kingdom.Retrospective, observational study describing the characteristics of patients with CD who attended the Centre for Tropical Diseases (Negrar, Verona, Italy between 2005 and 2013. All the patients affected by CD underwent chest X-ray, ECG, echocardiography, barium X-ray of the oesophagus and colonic enema. They were classified in the indeterminate, cardiac, digestive or mixed category according to the results of the screening tests. Treatment with benznidazole (or nifurtimox in case of intolerance to the first line therapy was offered to all patients, excluding the ones with advanced cardiomiopathy, pregnant and lactating women. Patients included were 332 (73.9% women. We classified 68.1% of patients as having Indeterminate Chagas, 11.1% Cardiac Chagas, 18.7% as Digestive Chagas and 2.1% as Mixed Form. Three hundred and twenty-one patients (96.7% were treated with benznidazole, and most of them (83.2% completed the treatment. At least one adverse effect was reported by 27.7% of patients, but they were mostly mild. Only a couple of patients received nifurtimox as second line treatment.Our case series represents the largest cohort of T. cruzi infected patients diagnosed and treated in Italy. An improvement of the access to diagnosis and cure is still needed, considering that about 9200 infected people are estimated to live in Italy. In general, there is an urgent need of common guidelines to better classify and manage patients with CD in non-endemic countries.

  19. Profile of Trypanosoma cruzi Infection in a Tropical Medicine Reference Center, Northern Italy

    Gobbi, Federico; Angheben, Andrea; Anselmi, Mariella; Postiglione, Chiara; Repetto, Ernestina; Buonfrate, Dora; Marocco, Stefania; Tais, Stefano; Chiampan, Andrea; Mainardi, Paride; Bisoffi, Zeno


    Background Chagas disease (CD) is endemic in Central and South America, Mexico and even in some areas of the United States. However, cases have been increasingly recorded also in non-endemic countries. The estimated number of infected people in Europe is in a wide range of 14000 to 181000 subjects, mostly resident in Spain, Italy and the United Kingdom. Methodology/Principal Findings Retrospective, observational study describing the characteristics of patients with CD who attended the Centre for Tropical Diseases (Negrar, Verona, Italy) between 2005 and 2013. All the patients affected by CD underwent chest X-ray, ECG, echocardiography, barium X-ray of the oesophagus and colonic enema. They were classified in the indeterminate, cardiac, digestive or mixed category according to the results of the screening tests. Treatment with benznidazole (or nifurtimox in case of intolerance to the first line therapy) was offered to all patients, excluding the ones with advanced cardiomiopathy, pregnant and lactating women. Patients included were 332 (73.9% women). We classified 68.1% of patients as having Indeterminate Chagas, 11.1% Cardiac Chagas, 18.7% as Digestive Chagas and 2.1% as Mixed Form. Three hundred and twenty-one patients (96.7%) were treated with benznidazole, and most of them (83.2%) completed the treatment. At least one adverse effect was reported by 27.7% of patients, but they were mostly mild. Only a couple of patients received nifurtimox as second line treatment. Conclusions/Significance Our case series represents the largest cohort of T. cruzi infected patients diagnosed and treated in Italy. An improvement of the access to diagnosis and cure is still needed, considering that about 9200 infected people are estimated to live in Italy. In general, there is an urgent need of common guidelines to better classify and manage patients with CD in non-endemic countries. PMID:25502927

  20. First report on Copepoda and Ostracoda (Crustacea from northern Apenninic springs (N. Italy: a faunal and biogeographical account

    Giampaolo ROSSETTI


    Full Text Available The microcrustacean fauna of rheocrene and rheo-limnocrene springs in a protected area of the northern Apennines (Italy was investigated for the first time. All springs are located in the catchments of the rivers Parma and Enza at altitudes between 800 and 1609 m a.s.l. Several of these springs are still in pristine condition while others are artificially modified or impacted to some degree. Surveys were carried out from April to June 2007. The sampling methods used for invertebrate fauna were: moss washing, artificial traps, and inserting drift tubes at the discharge point. A total of 14 harpacticoid, five cyclopoid, and 13 ostracod taxa were identified. Ostracods were mainly represented by crenophilic taxa; of particular interest was the collection of a specimen belonging to Pseudolimnocythere, a stygobiont genus with only two living species and a reduced distribution. Faunal affinities between northern Apenninic springs and those in other Italian mountain systems are discussed. The investigated ecosystems support a high microcrustacean diversity that must be adequately preserved due to the increasing direct and indirect impacts on mountain springs and groundwater resources.

  1. Determination of timber assortments obtainable from coppice chestnut stands (Susa Valley, Northern Italy)

    Nosenzo A


    Chestnut (Castanea sativa L.) coppice stands currently cover about 195.000 ha of Piedmont (North-Western Italy) surface, corresponding to 22.4 % of the overall forested area in the region. Most of these forest stands are usually older than the typical rotation period. As a consequence from these stands timber assortments with a higher value could be obtained. The purpose of this study is to assess the amount of timber assortments and to propose a sorting methodology based on measurements on s...




    Full Text Available The first diagnostic remains of the large prolacertiform Tanystropheus are reported from northeastern Italy. They include a proximal caudal vertebra from the Middle Triassic of Aupa valley (Udine, Friuli and a cervical vertebra from the Carnian of Fusea (Udine. The cervical vertebra represents the first record of Tanystropheus in the Carnian and is the geologically youngest occurrence other than the Norian T. fossai. Tanystropheus lived along the coasts of the northwestern Tethys during the Late Triassic while it disappeared in Central Europe where continental environments were prevailing. 

  3. Mercury Enrichment in Sediments of the Coastal Area of Northern Latium, Italy.

    Scanu, Sergio; Piazzolla, Daniele; Frattarelli, Francesco Manfredi; Mancini, Emanuele; Tiralongo, Francesco; Brundo, Maria Violetta; Tibullo, Daniele; Pecoraro, Roberta; Copat, Chiara; Ferrante, Margherita; Marcelli, Marco


    The purpose of this study was to evaluate the extent of the Hg geochemical anomaly arising in the Amiata and Tolfa complex to the coastal area of northern Latium and to examine the possible influence on this area by the Mignone River, and by the small coastal basins, which are characterized by both previous mining activities and decades of past industrial impact. The results confirm the extension of the anomaly of concentrations of Hg in the coastal area of northern Latium, with the northern sector influenced by the contributions of the Fiora and Mignone Rivers and the southern sector influenced by the contributions of minor basins. The results show high values of the Adverse Effect Index throughout the considered area and highlight the need for further investigation in order to assess the impact of human activities on the present and past values of Hg in marine sediments.

  4. A flood episode in northern Italy: multi-model and single-model mesoscale meteorological ensembles for hydrological predictions

    S. Davolio


    Full Text Available Numerical weather prediction models can be coupled with hydrological models to generate streamflow forecasts. Several ensemble approaches have been recently developed in order to take into account the different sources of errors and provide probabilistic forecasts feeding a flood forecasting system. Within this framework, the present study aims at comparing two high-resolution limited-area meteorological ensembles, covering short and medium range, obtained via different methodologies, but implemented with similar number of members, horizontal resolution (about 7 km, and driving global ensemble prediction system. The former is a multi-model ensemble, based on three mesoscale models (BOLAM, COSMO, and WRF, while the latter, following a single-model approach, is the operational ensemble forecasting system developed within the COSMO consortium, COSMO-LEPS (limited-area ensemble prediction system. The meteorological models are coupled with a distributed rainfall-runoff model (TOPKAPI to simulate the discharge of the Reno River (northern Italy, for a recent severe weather episode affecting northern Apennines. The evaluation of the ensemble systems is performed both from a meteorological perspective over northern Italy and in terms of discharge prediction over the Reno River basin during two periods of heavy precipitation between 29 November and 2 December 2008. For each period, ensemble performance has been compared at two different forecast ranges. It is found that, for the intercomparison undertaken in this specific study, both mesoscale model ensembles outperform the global ensemble for application at basin scale. Horizontal resolution is found to play a relevant role in modulating the precipitation distribution. Moreover, the multi-model ensemble provides a better indication concerning the occurrence, intensity and timing of the two observed discharge peaks, with respect to COSMO-LEPS. This seems to be ascribable to the different behaviour of the

  5. Seriousness, preventability, and burden impact of reported adverse drug reactions in Lombardy emergency departments: a retrospective 2-year characterization

    Perrone V


    Full Text Available Valentina Perrone,1,* Valentino Conti,2,* Mauro Venegoni,2 Stefania Scotto,2 Luca Degli Esposti,3 Diego Sangiorgi,3 Lucia Prestini,4 Sonia Radice,1 Emilio Clementi,5,6 Giuseppe Vighi,2,4 1Unit of Clinical Pharmacology, Department of Biomedical and Clinical Sciences, University Hospital Luigi Sacco, Università di Milano, Milan, Italy; 2Regional Centre for Pharmacovigilance, Lombardy, Milan, Italy; 3CliCon Srl, Health, Economics and Outcomes Research, Ravenna, Italy; 4Unit of Clinical Pharmacology and Pharmacovigilance, Niguarda Ca’Granda Hospital, Milan, Italy; 5Unit of Clinical Pharmacology, CNR Institute of Neuroscience, Department of Biomedical and Clinical Sciences, University Hospital Luigi Sacco, Università di Milano, Milan, Italy; 6Scientific Institute, IRCCS Eugenio Medea, Lecco, Italy *These authors contributed equally to the work Objective: The purpose of this study was to determine the prevalence of adverse drug reactions (ADRs reported in emergency departments (EDs and carry out a thorough characterization of these to assess preventability, seriousness that required hospitalization, subsequent 30-day mortality, and economic burden. Methods: This was a retrospective cohort study of data from an active pharmacovigilance project at 32 EDs in the Lombardy region collected between January 1, 2010 and December 31, 2011. Demographic, clinical, and pharmacological data on patients admitted to EDs were collected by trained and qualified monitors, and deterministic record linkage was performed to estimate hospitalizations. Pharmacoeconomic analyses were based on Diagnosis-Related Group reimbursement. Results: 8,862 ADRs collected with an overall prevalence rate of 3.5 per 1,000 visits. Of all ADRs, 42% were probably/definitely preventable and 46.4% were serious, 15% required hospitalization, and 1.5% resulted in death. The System Organ Classes most frequently associated with ADRs were: skin and subcutaneous tissue, gastrointestinal

  6. Firearm-related deaths in Brescia (Northern Italy) between 1994 and 2006: a retrospective study.

    Verzeletti, Andrea; Astorri, Paolo; De Ferrari, Francesco


    This retrospective study analyzes post-mortem examination data of 164 firearm-related casualties recorded by the Brescia, Italy Institute of Forensic Medicine between the years 1994 and 2006. The following variables were considered: year, month and day of death, gender and age of the victim, manner of death (homicide, suicide, accidental), type of weapon used, anatomical site and number of wounds, scene of death, and, whenever requested by the local District Attorney's Office, results of the toxicological examinations conducted on the corpses of the deceased. In the County of Brescia, Italy, the 2006 firearm-related mortality rate amounted to 0.84 per 100,000 residents, with an average of 12.6 cases per year. The most common manner of death was suicide (60.4%), followed by homicide (35.9%) and accidental death (3.7%). Most victims were male, with an average age of 47.2 in cases of suicide, 37.9 in cases of homicide, and 47.5 in cases of accidental death. Considering all of the death manners contemplated in this study, the weapon types most frequently resorted to were single-action, short-barrelled guns, followed by multiple-action, long-barrelled ones. In cases of suicide, entry wounds were primarily situated on the head (right temple) and chest (precordium), while in cases of homicide no conclusions could be drawn as to the entry wounds' predominant location.

  7. The relation between tectonics and sedimentation along the 'Sillaro line' : (Northern Apennines, Italy)

    de Jager, J.


    The transverse 'Sillaro line' is merely the outcrop line of the north-west dipping overthrust plane of the Liguride Complex. The anti-Apenninic strike of this overthrust plane is the result of the 'Sillaro flexure', a large synsedimentarily developed flexure of the basement of the Northern

  8. The relation between tectonics and sedimentation along the 'Sillaro line' (Northern Apennines, Italy)

    Jager, J. de


    The transverse 'Sillaro line' is merely the outcrop line of the north-west dipping overthrust plane of the Liguride Complex. The anti-Apenninic strike of this overthrust plane is the result of the 'Sillaro flexure', a large synsedimentarily developed flexure of the basement of the Northern

  9. Heavy metal contamination in little owl (Athene noctua) and common buzzard (Buteo buteo) from northern Italy.

    Battaglia, Alessandra; Ghidini, Sergio; Campanini, Giorgio; Spaggiari, Roberto


    In this study, two raptor species, the common buzzard (Buteo buteo) and the little owl (Athene noctua), were investigated for lead and cadmium concentrations, using liver, kidneys, pectoral muscle, sternum bone, and feathers. All the collected birds died at the Centro Recupero Rapaci of Lega Italiana Protezione Uccelli in Sala Baganza (Parma, Italy). They arrived alive at the Centro between November 1998 and November 1999 but died or were put to death as a consequence of injuries or other ailments. The results of the investigation do not show an excessive exposure to cadmium, whereas some interesting data have emerged in the case of lead. The concentration of the latter in the liver and in the bone of two little owls seem to suggest the possibility of chronic exposure. The high values found in one common buzzard, on the other hand, suggest an acute exposure and, probably, a case of lead shot ingestion.




    Full Text Available Twenty-eight freshwater crayfish were collected from 8 streams and one small lake in the province of South Tyrol (North Italy from autumn 1999 to spring 2001, in order to investigate the presence of branchiobdellidans. At 6 of the streams the white clawed crayfish (Austropotamobius pallipes italicus was collected, while the noble crayfish (Astacus astacus, the exotic species: signal crayfish (Pacifastacus leniusculus and spiny-cheek crayfish (Orconectes limosus were respectively caught at the other 2 streams and at the lake. Except for O. limosus, branchiobdellidans were observed on all crayfish examined. On noble crayfish, specimens of Branchiobdella italica and Branchiobdella hexodonta were found on the same host. Branchiobdella italica was largely recovered from all white clawed crayfish. The specimens of signal crayfish were found to carry only Xironogiton victoriensis.

  11. Population dynamics of the pioneer population of Daphnia parvula, Fordyce during the invasion of Lake Candia (Northern Italy

    Fiorenza MARGARITORA


    Full Text Available Since the 1970s Daphnia parvula, Fordyce, originally distributed in the New World, has been invading Europe. In Italy D. parvula first appeared in the shallow, eutrophic Lake Candia (Piedmont, Northern Italy during September 2002. Although several studies have documented D. parvula dispersal in European habitats, little is known about the life cycle and ecology of this invader in its new habitats. Invasion success depends on the ability of the invader population to perform well in the new ecosystem, which in turn results from the interaction between the characteristics of the invader and those of the invaded environment and its resident community. Early detection of D. parvula in the intensively studied Lake Candia offered an excellent opportunity to study the performance of the pioneer population and to document the early phases of invasion. Following the dynamics of the pioneer D. parvula population provided evidence of a high level of gamogenetic reproduction during most periods of population development. The production of males started at the onset of population growth prior to ephippia formation. The sex ratio ranged from 0.1 to 0.33 males per female with a maximum in October when males accounted for up to 24% of the total population density. The percentage of ephippia (free ephippia + ephippial females out of the total population density ranged from 3 to 23%. The large pool of resting eggs produced by the pioneer population of D. parvula in Lake Candia might reflect a strategy for increasing the probability of survival and establishment in the new environment.

  12. Seismogenic zonation and seismic hazard estimates in a Southern Italy area (Northern Apulia) characterised by moderate seismicity rates

    Del Gaudio, V.; Pierri, P.; Calcagnile, G.


    The northernmost part of Apulia, in Southern Italy, is an emerged portion of the Adriatic plate, which in past centuries was hit by at least three disastrous earthquakes and at present is occasionally affected by seismic events of moderate energy. In the latest seismic hazard assessment carried out in Italy at national scale, the adopted seismogenic zonation (named ZS9) has defined for this area a single zone including parts of different structural units (chain, foredeep, foreland). However significant seismic behaviour differences were revealed among them by our recent studies and, therefore, we re-evaluated local seismic hazard by adopting a zonation, named ZNA, modifying the ZS9 to separate areas of Northern Apulia belonging to different structural domains. To overcome the problem of the limited datasets of historical events available for small zones having a relatively low rate of earthquake recurrence, an approach was adopted that integrates historical and instrumental event data. The latter were declustered with a procedure specifically devised to process datasets of low to moderate magnitude shocks. Seismicity rates were then calculated following alternative procedural choices, according to a "logic tree" approach, to explore the influence of epistemic uncertainties on the final results and to evaluate, among these, the importance of the uncertainty in seismogenic zonation. The comparison between the results obtained using zonations ZNA and ZS9 confirms the well known "spreading effect" that the use of larger seismogenic zones has on hazard estimates. This effect can locally determine underestimates or overestimates by amounts that make necessary a careful reconsideration of seismic classification and building code application.

  13. Seismogenic zonation and seismic hazard estimates in a Southern Italy area (Northern Apulia characterised by moderate seismicity rates

    V. Del Gaudio


    Full Text Available The northernmost part of Apulia, in Southern Italy, is an emerged portion of the Adriatic plate, which in past centuries was hit by at least three disastrous earthquakes and at present is occasionally affected by seismic events of moderate energy. In the latest seismic hazard assessment carried out in Italy at national scale, the adopted seismogenic zonation (named ZS9 has defined for this area a single zone including parts of different structural units (chain, foredeep, foreland. However significant seismic behaviour differences were revealed among them by our recent studies and, therefore, we re-evaluated local seismic hazard by adopting a zonation, named ZNA, modifying the ZS9 to separate areas of Northern Apulia belonging to different structural domains. To overcome the problem of the limited datasets of historical events available for small zones having a relatively low rate of earthquake recurrence, an approach was adopted that integrates historical and instrumental event data. The latter were declustered with a procedure specifically devised to process datasets of low to moderate magnitude shocks. Seismicity rates were then calculated following alternative procedural choices, according to a "logic tree" approach, to explore the influence of epistemic uncertainties on the final results and to evaluate, among these, the importance of the uncertainty in seismogenic zonation. The comparison between the results obtained using zonations ZNA and ZS9 confirms the well known "spreading effect" that the use of larger seismogenic zones has on hazard estimates. This effect can locally determine underestimates or overestimates by amounts that make necessary a careful reconsideration of seismic classification and building code application.

  14. A 2-yr Mosquito Survey Focusing on Aedes koreicus (Diptera: Culicidae) in Northern Italy and Implications for Adult Trapping.

    Baldacchino, F; Montarsi, F; Arnoldi, D; Barategui, C; Ferro Milone, N; Da Rold, G; Capelli, G; Rizzoli, A


    Aedes koreicus (Edwards) is an invasive mosquito species, like Aedes albopictus (Skuse) and Aedes japonicus japonicus (Theobald), that has already colonized a large part of northeastern Italy and other European countries. Despite its rapid expansion, information about adult distribution and trapping is lacking. Here, we conducted a 2-yr longitudinal survey using adult traps to investigate the spatiotemporal distribution of Ae. koreicus and evaluated the effectiveness of three trapping devices in Latin square experiments conducted in an urban site and a forested site. The following three different traps were compared: a CO2-baited Biogents (BG) Sentinel trap, a CO2-baited Centers for Disease Control and Prevention light trap (CDC trap), and a grass infusion-baited gravid trap.In northern Italy, Ae. koreicus was collected from late April to early November, with peak of abundance observed in August. Aedes koreicus was more abundant in 2015 than in 2014 because of higher temperatures during summer. Unlike Ae. albopictus, the abundance of Ae. koreicus was not related to the altitude of the sampling locations in the range 241-660 m above sea level. The BG Sentinel and gravid traps collected significantly more Ae. koreicus than the CDC trap in the urban site, whereas there was no significant difference between the three traps in the forested site. In the urban site, the BG Sentinel trap and the gravid trap were the most effective for collecting Ae. albopictus and Culex pipiens L., respectively. In the forested site, Cx. pipiens was primarily collected by the CDC trap. © The Authors 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email:

  15. Charophytes of the lake Garda (Northern Italy: a preliminary assessment of diversity and distribution

    Rossano Bolpagni


    Full Text Available Charophytes (stoneworts and bassweeds are a typical macrophytic component of inland water ecosystems. Well-developed submerged meadows of charophytes are expression of clear water and rather low phytoplankton concentrations. Consequently, among aquatic macroscopic primary producers, charophytes are one of the most threatened groups being very sensitive to phosphorous availability, turbidity and water level perturbations. Accordingly, charophytes have been suffering a massive diversity loss worldwide over the last century, mainly because of human-induced pressures. During summer 2011, detailed field surveys were carried out with the main purpose of filling knowledge gaps concerning aquatic flora and vegetation of the lake Garda – the largest lake in Italy and one of the deepest in Europe. Along randomly selected transects, floristic data were collected following standard procedures, as imposed by the Water Framework Directive. Overall, 12 different species of charophytes were recorded, which accounts for 36% of total Italian charophytes and 19% of European species. The most diffuse species were Chara globularis and C. intermedia; whereas, the most interesting taxa were Chara polyacantha and Nitella hyalina, two species with narrow distribution in Italy. Overall in the lake Garda, dense stands of charophytes covered almost homogeneously the littoral sectors at a water depth between 3 and 12 m. The deepest species was C. globularis, which reached a maximum depth of colonisation of about 17.5 m. Charophytes represent a major element among the primary producers in the lake Garda. The high local charophyte diversity and the rather wide most colonised areas (~1000-1200 ha confirm that the lake Garda is an important reserve for many rare and threatened charophytes. For the first time, these results highlight the key role of the lake Garda for charophyte diversity at a national and European level.

  16. Sediment analysis to support the recent glacial origin of DDT pollution in Lake Iseo (Northern Italy).

    Bettinetti, Roberta; Galassi, Silvana; Guilizzoni, Piero; Quadroni, Silvia


    In the present study, a depth-related distribution of Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) in sediments of Lake Iseo, one of the major southern Alpine Italian lakes, is reported in order to further test the hypothesis of melting Alpine glaciers as a secondary source of contamination. In a previous paper, a "glacier contamination hypothesis" was suggested to explain the unexpected contamination of the biota of Lake Iseo, mainly fed by the Alpine melting ice. The sediment core analyses covered around the last 50 years. The organic matter profile evaluated as a Loss-On-Ignition percentage indicated transition of the basin from an oligotrophic to a mesotrophic status at around the early 1970s, but there was no evidence of the shift to eutrophy in the 1980s. Among DDTs, pp'DDE was the predominant metabolite, accounting on average for 79.4% of the total DDT concentrations and ranging from 6.4 to 447.5 ng g(-1)d.w. PCBs ranged from 5.0 to 163.7 ng g(-1)d.w. The maximum PCB concentrations were found in sediment layers corresponding to the 1970s when the highest production and use of these compounds occurred in Italy. In contrast, concentrations of DDTs showed a sharp increase from the early 1990s, long after their agricultural use was banned in Italy. This delayed pollution provides support for the hypothesis that the recent retreat of glaciers represents a secondary pollution source for old pesticides that were stored in the ice at the time of their use in agriculture.

  17. Ecological profiles of wetland plant species in the northern Apennines (N. Italy

    Marcello TOMASELLI


    Full Text Available Eighteen selected species occurring in the wetlands of the northern Apennines were studied by the ecological profile method. By this method, it is possible to identify the ecological factors mostly influencing species distribution within a particular vegetation. Moreover, it is possible to evaluate both ecological amplitude and ecological preferences of species. Ecological profiles were built for three factors (altitude, pH and electrical conductivity from a data set of 265 phytosociological relevés, used for altitude, and from a set of 92 measures, carried out in selected sites, for idrochemical variables. By numerical classification, based on chord distance and minimum variance, the ecological species groups for each factor were individuated. Subsequently, they were ordered by correspondence analysis for detecting relationships between ecological groups and classes of factors. By applying a goodness-of-fit test to ecological profiles, the species significantly deviating from uniformity were detected. They can be regarded as indicators for the corresponding ecological factor. We found seven indicator species for altitude (Carex nigra, C. rostrata, Juncus filiformis, J. alpino-articulatus, Eriophorum latifolium, E. angustifolium and Warnstorfia exannulata, four indicator species for electrical conductivity (Campylium stellatum, Carex tumidicarpa, Eriophorum latifolium and Juncus alpino-articulatus and one indicator species for pH (Sphagnum capillifolium. The ecological profiles of the wetland species in the northern Apennines were compared with those reported in literature for the same species from the Alps (namely Dolomites. In this way, a certain degree of ecological shift in several wetland species of the northern Apennines was documented. For altitude, it is possible to explain the shift considering the reduced elevational amplitude of northern Apennine wetlands with respect to those of the Alps. For pH, Sphagnum capillifolium occurs in

  18. Environmental quality of a semi-natural area of the Po Valley (northern Italy): aspects of soil and vegetation.

    Manfredi, Paolo; Giupponi, Luca; Cassinari, Chiara; Trevisan, Marco


    This work, originating in the preliminary analyses of a Life project and co-financed by the European Union ("Environmental recovery of degraded soils and desertified by a new treatment technology for land reconstruction", Life 10 ENV IT 400 "New Life";, aims to evaluate the environmental quality of a semi-natural area of the Po Valley (northern Italy) by analysing the characteristics of soil and vegetation. The area of study is located in the municipal territory of Piacenza (Emilia-Romagna, Italy) along the eastern shores of the river Trebbia and is made up of the closed landfill of Solid Urban Waste of Borgotrebbia (active from 1972 to 1985) and of the neighbouring areas (in North-South order: riverside area, northern borders of the landfill, landfill disposal, southern borders and cultivated corn fields). For each area pedological and vegetational analyses were carried out and in particular, as regards the soil, various chemical-physical analyses were done among which: pH, organic carbon, total nitrogen, salinity, exchangeable bases and granulometry. The ground vegetation data were collected using phytosociological relevés according to the method of the Zurich-Montpellier Sigmatist School, (Braun-Blanquet, 1964). For the analysis of the environmental quality of each area, the floristic-vegetation indexes system was applied as proposed by Taffetani & Rismondo (2009) (updated by Rismondo et al., 2011) conveniently created for analysing the ecological functionality of the agro-ecosystems. The results obtained by such applications drew attention to a dynamic vegetation mass in the landfill which, despite a value of the floristic biodiversity index (IFB) comparable to that of the borders, shows a much lower value of the maturity index (IM). This is due to the elevated percentage of annual species (index of the therophytic component = 52.78%) belonging to the phytosociological class Stellarietea mediae Tüxen, Lohmeyer & Preising ex

  19. Role of low angle normal faulting and basement thrusting on the structural architecture of the Northern Apennines (Italy)

    Molli, Giancarlo; Carlini, Mirko; Vescovi, Paolo; Artoni, Andrea; Balsamo, Fabrizio; Camurri, Francesca; Clemenzi, Luca; Storti, Fabrizio; Torelli, Luigi


    The Northern Apennines of Italy are a classical site for studying fundamental issues in thrust wedges, such as ophiolite formation and emplacement, interplay between tectonics and sedimentation, role of out-of-sequence thrusting, syn-orogenic versus post-orogenic extension, along strike segmentation, etc. Accordingly, the Northern Apennines have been extensively studied since more than two centuries ago. Despite the huge amount of available data with different resolution, a 3D comprehensive regional view combining in a modern framework all available surface and subsurface information for contiguous sectors of the chain is still lacking. We performed such an attempt in the area framed between the Taro valley to the north and the northern termination of the Alpi Apuane to the south. The region includes the main morphostructural zones of the North-West Apennines from the Tyrrhenian coast West-Northwest of La Spezia, through the main topographic divide of the Apennines, to the external frontal part of the chain. The area has been investigated through a multidisciplinary approach that integrated: 1) surface geological data collected during the last two decades of structural and stratigraphic field works in the internal as well as external sectors of the chain; 2) subsurface geological data including: a) interpretation of 1200 Km of seismic reflection profiles tied to surface geology and b) analysis of 39 boreholes stratigraphies. The construction of two regional NE-SW trending cross-sections (the Levanto-Pontremoli-Parma to the North and the La Spezia-Sarzana-North Apuane-Cerreto to the South), connected by the NW-SE trending Taro River-Lunigiana Area-Alpi Apuane composite section, allowed us to illustrate (i) the role of out-of-sequence blind thrusting in the basement, (ii) the presence of low angle normal faulting and its relationships with recent to active high angle normal faulting. Both extensional and contractional systems have relevant implications for the

  20. Community residential facilities in mental health services: A ten-year comparison in Lombardy.

    Barbato, Angelo; Civenti, Graziella; D'Avanzo, Barbara


    Residential mental health services grew steadily since 2000 in Italy. A reorganisation of residential facilities was implemented in 2007 in Lombardy, introducing supported housing in addition to staffed facilities. We compare the provision and characteristics of residential facilities in the 2007 and 2016. In 2007 there were 3462 beds (35.9/100,000 population) in 276 facilities. In 2016 beds were 4783 (47.8/100,000) in 520 facilities. The increase were unevenly distributed in the public and private sector, and the overall increase was due to a higher increase in the private sector. 72% of beds were in highly supervised facilities in 2007 and 66% in 2016. The public sector managed more facilities with a rehabilitation goal, while the private sector more for long-term accommodation. Mean numbers of beds were higher in facilities managed by the private sector in both years. The 2007 reorganisation and the stop to opening new facilities in the last years were not enough to correct the imbalance between highly supervised and flexible solutions. A wider and more diverse offer might have triggered off an increased demand, rather than a more rational use. Given the costs of highly staffed facilities, and the risk of reproducing custodial models, close evaluation of the use of residential facilities should inform policies. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Comparison of 7 years of satellite-borne and ground-based tropospheric NO2 measurements around Milan, Italy

    OrdóñEz, C.; Richter, A.; Steinbacher, M.; Zellweger, C.; Nüß, H.; Burrows, J. P.; PréVôT, A. S. H.


    Tropospheric NO2 vertical column densities (VCDs) over the Lombardy region were retrieved from measurements of the Global Ozone Monitoring Experiment (GOME) spectrometer for the period 1996-2002 using a differential optical absorption method. This data set was compared with in situ measurements of NO2 at around 100 ground stations in the Lombardy region, northern Italy. The tropospheric NO2 VCDs are reasonably well correlated with the near-surface measurements under cloud-free conditions. However, the slope of the tropospheric VCDs versus ground measurements is higher in autumn-winter than in spring-summer. This effect is clearly reduced when the peroxyacetyl nitrate and nitric acid (HNO3) interferences of conventional NOx analyzers are taken into account. For a more quantitative comparison, the NO2 ground measurements were scaled to tropospheric VCDs using a seasonal NO2 vertical profile over northern Italy calculated by the Model of Ozone and Related Tracers 2 (MOZART-2). The tropospheric VCDs retrieved from satellite and those determined from ground measurements agree well, with a correlation coefficient R = 0.78 and a slope close to 1 for slightly polluted stations. GOME cannot reproduce the high NO2 amounts over the most polluted stations, mainly because of the large spatial variability in the distribution of pollution within the GOME footprint. The yearly and weekly cycles of the tropospheric NO2 VCDs are similar for both data sets, with significantly lower values in the summer months and on Sundays, respectively. Considering the pollution level and high aerosol concentrations of this region, the agreement is very good. Furthermore, uncertainties in the ground-based measurements, including the extrapolation to NO2 VCDs, might be as important as those of the NO2 satellite retrieval itself.

  2. Sale of Raw Milk in Northern Italy: Food Safety Implications and Comparison of Different Analytical Methodologies for Detection of Foodborne Pathogens

    Giacometti, Federica; Serraino, Andrea; Finazzi, Guido; Daminelli, Paolo; Losio, Marina Nadia; Piva, Silvia; Florio, Daniela; Riu, Raffaela; Zanoni, Renato Giulio


    The safety of raw milk sold in Northern Italy was investigated in relation to hygiene quality parameters and presence of Salmonella spp., Listeria monocytogenes, thermotolerant Campylobacter, and Verocytotoxin producing Escherichia coli O157:H7. The performance of different analytical methods used—official culture method (ISO), modified Bacteriological Analytical Manual cultural method (mBAM), and polymerase chain reaction (PCR)— was evaluated. The presence of Mycobacterium avium ...

  3. Determination of timber assortments obtainable from coppice chestnut stands (Susa Valley, Northern Italy

    Nosenzo A


    Full Text Available Chestnut (Castanea sativa L. coppice stands currently cover about 195.000 ha of Piedmont (North-Western Italy surface, corresponding to 22.4 % of the overall forested area in the region. Most of these forest stands are usually older than the typical rotation period. As a consequence from these stands timber assortments with a higher value could be obtained. The purpose of this study is to assess the amount of timber assortments and to propose a sorting methodology based on measurements on standing trees within these chestnut stands.Five study areas were selected in the Susa Valley, where forest measurements were realized within sampling plots. Timber assortments obtainable from each coppice shoot were then determined by means of the Bitterlich’s relascope. More than 1.000 timber logs were measured. The data elaboration allowed to assess the timber assortment production of the investigated stands. The proposed methodology makes it possible to better exploit timber assortments. In fact, while usually the whole production from chestnut coppices is directly destined to secondary products, the subdivision into assortments could result in a 20 % of products with higher commercial value. It is important to notice that within these stands no tending operation is currently realized. The definition of qualitative features to classify timber assortments can provide useful suggestions on the main yield targets that could be reached through silvicultural management.

  4. Prevalence of Leishmania infantum and co-infections in stray cats in northern Italy.

    Spada, Eva; Canzi, Ilaria; Baggiani, Luciana; Perego, Roberta; Vitale, Fabrizio; Migliazzo, Antonella; Proverbio, Daniela


    Stray cats in the city of Milan, Italy, were tested for Leishmania infantum and other selected infections. Twenty-seven cats (30.0%) were seroreactive by indirect fluorescent antibody test (IFAT), with an antibody titer of 1:40 for 16 (17.7%) cats and 1:80 (cut-off for feline L. infantum infection) for 11 (12.2%) cats. One blood (1.1%) and one popliteal lymph node (1.1%) sample tested positive by real-time polymerase chain reaction; no oculoconjunctival swabs tested positive. Feline immunodeficiency virus, feline leukemia virus, and feline coronavirus (FCoV) seroprevalence determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay was 6.1, 6.1, and 39.0%, respectively. Toxoplasma gondii, Bartonella henselae, and Chlamydophila felis prevalence determined by IFAT was 29.3, 17.1, and 17.1%, respectively. The frequency of seroreactivity to L. infantum was significantly higher in FCoV-seropositive cats (OR=4.4, P=0.04). L. infantum-infected stray cats in Milan have a high seropositivity rate, comparable to that of cats in areas endemic for leishmaniosis.

  5. Use of bioclimatic indexes to characterize phenological phases of apple varieties in Northern Italy.

    Valentini, N; Me, G; Ferrero, R; Spanna, F


    The research was designed to characterize the phenological behaviour of different apple varieties and to compare different bioclimatic indexes in order to evaluate their adaptability in describing the phenological phases of fruit species. A field study on the requirement for chilling units (winter chilling requirement) and the accumulation of growing degree hours of 15 native apple cultivars was carried out in a fruit-growing area in North West Italy (Cuneo Province, Piedmont). From 1991 to 1993, climatic data were collected at meteorological stations installed in an experimental orchard (Verzuolo, Cuneo). Four methods were compared to determine the winter chilling requirement: Hutchins, Weinberger-Eggert, Utah and North Carolina. The Utah method was applied to determine the time when the chilling units accumulated become effective in meeting the rest requirements. A comparison of the different methods indicated that the Weinberger-Eggert method is the best: as it showed the lowest statistical variability during the 3 years of observations. The growing degree hour requirement (GDH) was estimated by the North Carolina method with two different base temperatures: 4.4 degrees C and 6.1 degrees C. More difficulties were met when the date of rest completion and the beginning of GDH accumulation was determined. The best base temperature for the estimation of GDH is 4.4 degrees C. Phenological and climatic characterizations are two basic tools for giving farmers and agricultural advisors important information about which varieties to choose and which are the best and the most correct cultivation practices to follow.

  6. Subsequent biotic crises delayed marine recovery following the late Permian mass extinction event in northern Italy.

    Foster, William J; Danise, Silvia; Price, Gregory D; Twitchett, Richard J


    The late Permian mass extinction event was the largest biotic crisis of the Phanerozoic and has the longest recovery interval of any extinction event. It has been hypothesised that subsequent carbon isotope perturbations during the Early Triassic are associated with biotic crises that impeded benthic recovery. We test this hypothesis by undertaking the highest-resolution study yet made of the rock and fossil records of the entire Werfen Formation, Italy. Here, we show that elevated extinction rates were recorded not only in the Dienerian, as previously recognised, but also around the Smithian/Spathian boundary. Functional richness increases across the Smithian/Spathian boundary associated with elevated origination rates in the lower Spathian. The taxonomic and functional composition of benthic faunas only recorded two significant changes: (1) reduced heterogeneity in the Dienerian, and (2) and a faunal turnover across the Smithian/Spathian boundary. The elevated extinctions and compositional shifts in the Dienerian and across the Smithian/Spathian boundary are associated with a negative and positive isotope excursion, respectively, which supports the hypothesis that subsequent biotic crises are associated with carbon isotope shifts. The Spathian fauna represents a more advanced ecological state, not recognised in the previous members of the Werfen Formation, with increased habitat differentiation, a shift in the dominant modes of life, appearance of stenohaline taxa and the occupation of the erect and infaunal tiers. In addition to subsequent biotic crises delaying the recovery, therefore, persistent environmental stress limited the ecological complexity of benthic recovery prior to the Spathian.

  7. Carbon Sequestration in Soils Affected by Douglas Fir Reforestation in Apennines (Northern Italy

    Giampaolo Di Biase


    Full Text Available Douglas fir reforestation plays an important role in Italian forest because no indigenous conifer has similar characteristics of productivity and timber quality. Few studies on physicochemical properties of soils under Douglas fire are noticeable. The aim of this work is to evaluate the organic C stock into soils under Douglas fir plantation in different selected areas. The areas of study are located in the North Apennine (Italy; Corno alle Scale (COR, Vallombrosa (VAL, Mulino Mengoni (MEN, respectively are chosen for the presence of Douglas fir reforestation of 60 years old. Two soil profiles for each area have been open and described. The pH value decreased along the profile depth. The organic C amount in organic layers was higher in Val and Men pedons than that determined in COR one. Higher amount of organic C were detected in organo-mineral horizons of Co pedons, highlighting a rapid turnover of soil organic matter. The C stock calculated in the first 30 cm of soil showed that the higher C amount is stored in highest altitudes profiles (COR6 and VAL6 than the other. The soil are classified as Lithic Dystrudepts in the highest altitudes (COR 6, 7 and VAL 6, 7, respectively while as Humic Dystrudepts in MEN (4 and 5 pedons. We conclude that no dangerous effects on soil quality of Douglas fir were investigated and they seem to be similar to those of native tree species, even if other different aspects should be investigated.

  8. Factors affecting diatom dynamics in the alpine lakes of Colbricon (Northern Italy: a 10-year survey

    Andrea SQUARTINI


    Full Text Available Planktonic diatom fluctuations, their diversity and relationships with environmental variables were analyzed for ten consecutive years in Colbricon Superiore and Inferiore, two small high-mountain lakes located in the Paneveggio-Pale di S. Martino Natural Park (Trento, Italy offering the rare opportunity to study two lakes differing only by area and volume and being in this respect in a ratio of 2:1 and 3:1 respectively. The lakes were monitored and sampled monthly, during ten ice-free periods, from 1998 to 2007, to correlate water chemical and physical characteristics with the recorded diversity and abundance of planktonic diatoms. 55 taxa of Bacillariophyceae were found, among which Cyclotella spp., Tabellaria flocculosa and Fragilaria spp. were dominant. Both chemical data and diatom community composition are consistent with well buffered mesotrophic lakes. We found statistical evidence that the development of diatoms was strongly related to the variation of water temperature. Furthermore, several different signatures of the diatom-enviroment relationships arose between the two lakes as e.g., a negative correlation between diatom development and water transparency was occurring in the larger lake only. As a result, the average diatom density recorded over the 10 years period were 1.17 fold higher than in the lower lake which corresponds to a 1.65 fold higher biomass. A size-dependent tighter response of the phytoplankton to chemical parameters appears to operate in the smaller waterbody compared to the larger one.

  9. Epidemiology and clinics of mushroom poisoning in Northern Italy: A 21-year retrospective analysis.

    Cervellin, G; Comelli, I; Rastelli, G; Sanchis-Gomar, F; Negri, F; De Luca, C; Lippi, G


    Limited information exists about epidemiology and management of mushroom poisoning. We analyzed and described epidemiology, clinical presentation, and clinical course of mushroom-poisoned patients admitted to emergency departments (EDs) of the Province of Parma, Italy. Data from the database of mycological service were matched with clinical information retrieved from hospitals' database, from January 1, 1996 to December 31, 2016. Mycologist consultation was obtained in 379/443 identified mushroom poisonings. A remarkable seasonality was found, with significant peak in autumn. Thanks to the collaboration, the implicated species could be identified in 397 cases (89.6%); 108 cases (24.4%) were due to edible mushrooms, Boletus edulis being the most represented (63 cases). Overall, 408 (92%) cases presented with gastrointestinal toxicity. Twenty cases of amatoxin poisoning were recorded (11 Amanita phalloides and 9 Lepiota brunneoincarnata). One liver transplantation was needed. We observed 13 cases of cholinergic toxicity and 2 cases of hallucinogenic toxicity. Finally, 46 cases were due to "mixed" toxicities, and a total of 69 needed hospitalization. Early identification and management of potentially life-threatening cases is challenging in the ED, so that a mycologist service on call is highly advisable, especially during periods characterized by the highest incidence of poisoning.

  10. Adherence of backcountry winter recreationists to avalanche prevention and safety practices in northern Italy.

    Procter, E; Strapazzon, G; Dal Cappello, T; Castlunger, L; Staffler, H P; Brugger, H


    Backcountry recreationists account for a high percentage of avalanche fatalities, but the total number of recreationists and relative percentage of different recreation types are unknown. The aim of this study was to collect the first comprehensive survey of backcountry skiers and snowshoers in a region in the European Alps to quantify adherence to basic prevention and safety practices. Over a 1-week period in February 2011 in South Tyrol, Italy, 5576 individuals (77.7% skiers, 22.3% snowshoers) in 1927 groups were surveyed. Significantly more skiers than snowshoers could report the avalanche danger level (52.5% vs 28.0% of groups) and carried standard rescue equipment (transceiver, probe, and shovel) (80.6% vs 13.7% of individuals). Complete adherence to minimum advisable practices (i.e., an individual being in a group with one member correctly informed about the danger level and carrying personal standard rescue equipment) was 41.5%, but was significantly higher in skiers (51.1% vs 8.7% snowshoers) and in individuals who were younger, reported more tours per season, traveled in larger groups, and started earlier. A transnational survey over a complete winter season would be required to obtain total participation prevalence, detect regional differences, and assess the influence of prevention and safety practices on relative reduction in mortality.




    Full Text Available The up to 1200 m thick Norian succession of the Quattervals Nappe (Central Austroalpine, Italy documents a tectonically-driven passage from intertidal facies (Dolomia Principale-Hauptdolomit, represented by early-dolomitized bedded to massive gray dolostones, to intraplatform basin sediments (Pra Grata Formation and Quattervals Limestone, consisting of resedimented dark limestones and thin bedded laminated limestones, alternating (mainly in the Pra Grata Formation with intraformational breccias containing abundant shallow-water facies. The transitional and basinal facies contain an interesting ostracod assemblage, beside bioclastic layers containing shallow-water and upper slope skeletal grains.The ostracod fauna is rich in specimens belonging to few genera, denoting restricted environmental conditions characterized by variations of salinity and low oxygenation. Despite the intense deformation and recrystallization related to the Alpine tectonics, the paleontological analysis of the ostracod assemblage from the base of the Quattervals Limestone, allowed the identification of the two new species of ostracods Rhombocythere dimorphica and Kerocythere quattervalsi in association with other already known forms. 

  12. Seroepidemiological and clinical survey of feline immunodeficiency virus infection in northern Italy.

    Peri, E V; Ponti, W; Dall'ara, P; Rocchi, M; Zecconi, A; Bonizzi, L


    Four hundred and thirty-nine feline serum samples from cats with different living conditions in the north of Italy were tested for antibodies to feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) and for antigen of Feline Leukemia Virus by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. A Western blot technique was also used on the positive sera in order to confirm the presence of specific antibodies to FIV. The Western blot enabled the detection of a false positive serum. The prevalence of FIV infection in this population was 12.5% and among the seropositive cats a greater proportion was male (74.5%) than female (25.5%). A correlation between the clinical status and the evolution of the pathology is described together with a score based on the severity of the stomatitis in infected cats. The Western blot patterns of positive samples were then compared with the stage of the pathology. Statistical analysis on the distribution of FIV in stray cats, cats with garden and courtyard access and strictly house-confined cats showed a highly significant risk of the infection in the first group.

  13. Anatomy of biocalcarenitic units in the Plio-Pleistocene record of the Northern Apennines (Italy)

    Cau, Simone; Roveri, Marco; Taviani, Marco


    The Castell'Arquato Basin (CAB) in the foothills of the thrust-belt Northern Apennines is a foreland basin infilled by Plio-Quaternary sediments and a reference area for Plio-Pleistocene biostratigraphy. The CAB exposes plurimetric biodetrital carbonate units at discrete temporal intervals. Such shell-rich units are at places lithified, turning into conspicuous biodetritral carbonate rocks (biocalcarenites) that display a cyclical stacking motif highlighted by the regular alternation with finer-grained marine deposits. The cyclical nature of thick biocalcarenites has been hypothesized to be orbitally-controlled by obliquity and/or precession cyclicity. Furthermore, biocalcarenite-mudstone couplets form distinct clusters governed by 100-400 ka eccentricity maxima starting from 3.1 Ma at the inception of the Northern Hemisphere glaciation. They correlate with sapropels cycles formed at times of maximum insolation (precession minima). The CAB calcarenites are poorly known with respect to their environmental genetic context what motivated a detailed paleoecological analysis to unravel at best their formative context. Five distinct biofacies arranged in stacking patterns are identified through two-way cluster analysis based on the macrofossil content. Our quantitative and qualitative results suggest that these polytaxic shell concentrations and their bracketing marine mudstones developed in middle shelf settings being sensitive to climatically-driven changes.

  14. Shift work and serum 25-OH vitamin D status among factory workers in Northern Italy: Cross-sectional study.

    Romano, Alessandro; Vigna, Luisella; Belluigi, Valentina; Conti, Diana Misaela; Barberi, Claudia Eleonora; Tomaino, Laura; Consonni, Dario; Riboldi, Luciano; Tirelli, Amedea Silvia; Andersen, Lars Louis


    Low levels of vitamin D are related to muscle weakness, poor balance, and higher risk of falls, and can therefore have a major impact on performance and safety at work. Little knowledge exists on the association between work environment and vitamin D status. This study evaluates vitamin D status in shift workers. In this cross-sectional study, led during early springtime, 96 male shift workers at an engineering factory in Northern Italy, and 100 male daily workers operating nearby, participated. 25-OH vitamin D concentration, anthropometric indexes, fasting glycemia and triglycerides were detected. 51 shift workers underwent anamnesis collection on lifestyle and habits and determination of heel bone mineral density. Vitamin D levels were lower in shift workers than daily ones (13.4 ± 5.3 ng/mL versus 21.9 ± 10.7 ng/mL, p < 0.001). Linear regression analysis adjusted for age, body mass index and smoking habits confirms a statistically significant association between shift work and vitamin D levels (p < 0.0001). An association trend between cigarette smoking and low vitamin D values was found. No significant association was detected between the heel bone mineral density values and vitamin D levels or smoking habits. In conclusion, this cross-sectional study highlights the high prevalence of vitamin D deficit among shift workers compared with daily ones.

  15. Effective crustal permeability controls fault evolution: An integrated structural, mineralogical and isotopic study in granitic gneiss, Monte Rosa, northern Italy

    Lawther, Susan E. M.; Dempster, Tim J.; Shipton, Zoe K.; Boyce, Adrian J.


    Two dextral faults within granitic gneiss in the Monte Rosa nappe, northern Italy reveal key differences in their evolution controlled by evolving permeability and water/rock reactions. The comparison reveals that identical host rock lithologies develop radically different mineralogies within the fault zones, resulting in fundamentally different deformation histories. Oxygen and hydrogen isotope analyses coupled to microstructural characterisation show that infiltration of meteoric water occurred into both fault zones. The smaller Virgin Fault shows evidence of periodic closed system behaviour, which promoted the growth of hydrothermal K-feldspar, whilst the more open system behaviour of the adjacent Ciao Ciao Fault generated a weaker muscovite-rich fault core, which promoted a step change in fault evolution. Effective crustal permeability is a vital control on fault evolution and, coupled to the temperature (i.e. depth) at which key mineral transformations occur, is probably a more significant factor than host rock strength in controlling fault development. The study suggests that whether a fault in granitic basement grows into a large structure may be largely controlled by the initial hydrological properties of the host rocks. Small faults exposed at the surface may therefore be evolutionary "dead-ends" that typically do not represent the early stages in the development of larger faults.

  16. Petrography and chemistry of tungsten-rich oxycalciobetafite in hydrothermal veins of the Adamello contact aureole, northern Italy

    Lumpkin, Gregory R.; Gieré, Reto; Williams, C. Terry; McGlinn, Peter J.; Payne, Timothy E.


    Tungsten-rich oxycalciobetafite occurs in complex Ti-rich hydrothermal veins emplaced within dolomite marble in the contact aureole of the Adamello batholith, northern Italy, where it occurs as overgrowths on zirconolite. The betafite is weakly zoned and contains 29-34 wt% UO2. In terms of end-members, the betafite contains approximately 50 mol% CaUTi2O7 and is one of the closest known natural compositions to the pyrochlore phase proposed for use in titanate nuclear waste forms. Amorphization and volume expansion of the betafite caused cracks to form in the enclosing silicate mineral grains. Backscattered electron images reveal that betafite was subsequently altered along crystal rims, particularly near the cracks. Electron probe microanalyses reveal little difference in composition between altered and unaltered areas, except for lower totals, suggesting that alteration is primarily due to hydration. Zirconolite contains up to 18 wt% ThO2 and 24 wt% UO2, and exhibits strong compositional zoning, but no internal cracking due to differential (and anisotropic) volume expansion and no visible alteration. The available evidence demonstrates that both oxycalciobetafite and zirconolite retained actinides for approximately 40 million years after the final stage of vein formation. During this time, oxycalciobetafite and zirconolite accumulated a total alpha-decay dose of 3.0-3.6 × 1016 and 0.2-2.0 × 1016 α/mg, respectively.

  17. Channel response to extreme floods: Insights on controlling factors from six mountain rivers in northern Apennines, Italy

    Surian, Nicola; Righini, Margherita; Lucía, Ana; Nardi, Laura; Amponsah, William; Benvenuti, Marco; Borga, Marco; Cavalli, Marco; Comiti, Francesco; Marchi, Lorenzo; Rinaldi, Massimo; Viero, Alessia


    This work addresses the geomorphic response of mountain rivers to extreme floods, exploring the relationships between morphological changes and controlling factors. The research was conducted on six tributaries of the Magra River (northern Apennines, Italy) whose catchments were affected by an extreme flood (estimated recurrence interval > 100 years in most of the basins) on 25 October 2011. An integrated approach was deployed to study this flood, including (i) analysis of channel width changes by comparing aerial photographs taken before and after the flood, (ii) estimate of peak discharges in ungauged streams, (iii) detailed mapping of landslides and analysis of their connectivity with the channel network. Channel widening occurred in 35 reaches out of 39. In reaches with channel slope hydraulic variables alone are not sufficient to satisfactorily explain the channel response to extreme floods, and inclusion of other factors such as lateral confinement is needed to increase explanatory capability of regression models. Concerning hydraulic variables, this study showed that the degree of channel widening is more strongly related to unit stream power calculated based on pre-flood channel width than to cross-sectional stream power and to unit stream power calculated with post-flood channel width. This could suggest that most width changes occurred after the flood peak. Finally, in terms of hazard, it is crucial to document the type and magnitude of channel changes, to identify controlling factors, and most importantly, to develop tools enabling us to predict where major geomorphic changes occur during an extreme flood.

  18. Potential Risk of Dengue and Chikungunya Outbreaks in Northern Italy Based on a Population Model of Aedes albopictus (Diptera: Culicidae.

    Giorgio Guzzetta


    Full Text Available The rapid invasion and spread of Aedes albopictus (Skuse, 1894 within new continents and climatic ranges has created favorable conditions for the emergence of tropical arboviral diseases in the invaded areas. We used mosquito abundance data from 2014 collected across ten sites in northern Italy to calibrate a population model for Aedes albopictus and estimate the potential of imported human cases of chikungunya or dengue to generate the condition for their autochthonous transmission in the absence of control interventions. The model captured intra-year seasonality and heterogeneity across sites in mosquito abundance, based on local temperature patterns and the estimated site-specific mosquito habitat suitability. A robust negative correlation was found between the latter and local late spring precipitations, indicating a possible washout effect on larval breeding sites. The model predicts a significant risk of chikungunya outbreaks in most sites if a case is imported between the beginning of summer and up to mid-November, with an average outbreak probability between 4.9% and 25%, depending on the site. A lower risk is predicted for dengue, with an average probability between 4.2% and 10.8% for cases imported between mid-July and mid-September. This study shows the importance of an integrated entomological and medical surveillance for the evaluation of arboviral disease risk, which is a precondition for designing cost-effective vector control programs.

  19. Designing and implementing more effective Integrated Early Warning Systems in mountain areas: a case study from Northern Italy

    Carolina García


    Full Text Available It is essential to consider and to understand the social context in which an Early Warning System (EWS is planned and to integrate all of its components, otherwise it is likely to fail. EWS are complex tools for disaster risk reduction which are only effective if they generate an appropriate response in the exposed population. Any effective EWS relies on the reaction capacity of all stakeholders. This reaction capacity is strongly dependent on how well EWS are integrated within their social context, especially with regards to potential marginalized and vulnerable communities. This dependence was confirmed in the study area in Valtellina di Tirano, northern Italy, which is recurrently affected by multiple mountain hazards. The local population is geographically marginalized due to restricted access to the region and exposure to hazardous events, and socially marginalized due to the lack of participation in decision making. Results of a survey show that the local population has low levels of perceived risk, a general lack of self-responsibility with regard to disaster risk reduction, and a tendency to transfer the responsibility to the authorities. However, respondents acknowledge and show interest in addressing their lack of preparedness and in participating actively in disaster risk reduction efforts. A follow-up survey demonstrates that significant variations in vulnerability within a given community over time, occur together with changes in traditional livelihood activities, economic systems and population demographics.

  20. Presence of host-seeking Ixodes ricinus and their infection with Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato in the Northern Apennines, Italy.

    Ragagli, Charlotte; Mannelli, Alessandro; Ambrogi, Cecilia; Bisanzio, Donal; Ceballos, Leonardo A; Grego, Elena; Martello, Elisa; Selmi, Marco; Tomassone, Laura


    Host-seeking ticks were collected in the Northern Apennines, Italy, by dragging at 35 sites, at altitudes ranging from 680 and 1670 m above sea level (asl), from April to November, in 2010 and 2011. Ixodes ricinus (4431 larvae, 597 nymphs and 12 adults) and Haemaphysalis punctata (11,209 larvae, 313 nymphs, and 25 adults) were the most abundant species, followed by Haemaphysalis sulcata (20 larvae, five nymphs, and 13 adults), Dermacentor marginatus (42 larvae and two adults) and Ixodes hexagonus (one nymph). Greatest numbers of ticks were collected at locations characterised by southern exposure and limestone substratum, at altitudes <1400 m asl; I. ricinus was most abundant in Turkey oak (Quercus cerris) wood, whereas H. punctata was mostly collected in hop hornbeam (Ostrya carpinifolia) wood and on exposed rocks. Ixodes ricinus was also found up to 1670 m asl, in high stand beech (Fagus sylvatica) wood. The overall prevalence of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato (sl) in 294 host-seeking I. ricinus nymphs was 8.5 %. Borrelia garinii was the most frequently identified genospecies (64.0 % of positive nymphs), followed by B. valaisiana, B. burgdorferi sensu stricto, B. afzelii, and B. lusitaniae. Based upon the comparison with the results of previous studies at the same location, these research findings suggest the recent invasion of the study area by the tick vector and the agents of Lyme borreliosis.

  1. Knowledge of human papillomavirus infection and its prevention among adolescents and parents in the greater Milan area, Northern Italy

    Consolo Silvia


    Full Text Available Abstract Background In order to be widely accepted by users, the implementation of a new health intervention requires them to be adequately informed about its clinical importance, benefits and risks. The aim of this study was to provide data on the knowledge of Italian adolescents and parents concerning human papillomavirus (HPV infection and its prevention in order to allow the development of adequate training programmes. Methods Between 2 May and 15 June 2008, we made a cross-sectional survey of 863 high school students and 2,331 parents of middle and high school students using two anonymously completed questionnaires covering the knowledge of HPV infection and related diseases, and attitudes to vaccinations. The approached schools were a convenience sample of the schools of the greater Milan area, Northern Italy. Results More mothers than fathers were aware that HPV infection could concern their children (58% vs 53%; p = 0.004 and were favourable towards vaccinating their children against HPV (68% vs 65%; p = 0.03; among the students, more females than males were aware that HPV infection could concern themselves (45% vs 26%; p vs 40%; p Conclusions Both students and parents seem to underestimate the likelihood of HPV infection, and this is associated with a lower propensity for vaccination. This is an important indication for future training programmes concerning HPV prevention designed to increase the acceptance of HPV vaccine in families.

  2. Inorganic raw materials economy and provenance of chipped industry in some stone age sites of northern and central Italy.

    Bietti, Amilcare; Boschian, Giovanni; Crisci, Gino Mirocle; Danese, Ermanno; De Francesco, Anna Maria; Dini, Mario; Fontana, Federica; Giampietri, Alessandra; Grifoni, Renata; Guerreschi, Antonio; Liagre, Jérémie; Negrino, Fabio; Radi, Giovanna; Tozzi, Carlo; Tykot, Robert


    An opportunistic and local choice of raw materials is typically attested in the Lower and Middle Paleolithic industries throughout Italy. The quality of the raw material usually affected the flaking technology and quality of the products. In the Upper Paleolithic and the Mesolithic, raw material procurement strategies were more complex. Flint was exploited both locally, in areas where abundant outcrops of raw materials were available (such as the Lessini mountains), and in distant localities, after which it was transported or exchanged over medium/long distances. Different routes of exchange were thus followed in the various periods; good reconstruction of these routes have been provided by a study of the Garfagnana sites in Northern Tuscany, and the Mesolithic deposit of Mondeval de Sora (Dolomites). An interesting example of a Late Upper Paleolithic flint quarry and workshop were found in Abruzzo, in the San Bartolomeo shelter. The extended trade of obsidian from Lipari, Palmarola and Sardinia to the Italian Peninsula is attested in the Neolithic, with some differences concerning the age and different areas.

  3. Early detection of tick-borne encephalitis virus spatial distribution and activity in the province of Trento, northern Italy

    Annapaola Rizzoli


    Full Text Available New human cases of tick-borne encephalitis (TBE have recently been recorded outside the recognised foci of this disease, i.e. in the province of Trento in northern Italy. In order to predict the highest risk areas for increased TBE virus activity, we have combined cross-sectional serological data, obtained from 459 domestic goats, with analysis of the autumnal cooling rate based on Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS land surface temperature (LST data. A significant relationship between finding antibodies against the virus in serum (seroprevalence in goats and the autumnal cooling rate was detected, indicating that the transmission intensity of the virus does not only vary spatially, but also in relation to climatic factors. Virus seroprevalence in goats was correlated with the occurrence of TBE in humans and also with the average number of forestry workers’ tick bites, demonstrating that serological screening of domestic animals, combined with an analysis of the autumnal cooling rate, can be used as early-warning predictors of TBE risk in humans.

  4. Three-dimensional geometry and tectonostratigraphy of the Pennine zone, Central Alps, Switzerland and Northern Italy

    Maxelon, Michael; Mancktelow, Neil S.


    Continental collision during Alpine orogenesis entailed a polyphase deformation history (D 1-D 5) in the Pennine zone of the Central Alps. The regional tectonostratigraphy was basically developed during D 1 and D 2, characterised by isoclinal, typically north-closing recumbent anticlines, separated by pinched-in synclines, on the scale of tens of kilometres. Later deformation phases (D 3 and D 4) warped the stack into wavy to open folds. Exhumation of this zone resulted locally in later vertical shortening and folding of already steep fabrics (D 5). Three-dimensional models of the nappe pile were constructed, based on geostatistical assessment of the regional foliation field and considering the abundant structural field data. These models indicate the existence of five principal tectonostratigraphic levels developed during D 1 and thus equivalent to nappe units s. str.: the Gotthard, the Leventina-Antigorio, the Maggia-Simano (and probably the Monte Leone as well as the Composite Lepontine Series), Lebendun-Soja and Adula-Cima Lunga levels. All these tectonic units formed part of the passive continental margin of Europe prior to the onset of the Alpine orogenesis. Individual isoclinal post-nappe folds reflect relative displacements on the order of 40 km or more. The most prominent D 2 post-nappe structure is the Wandfluhhorn Fold, structurally equivalent to the northern closure of the Leventina-Lucomagno Antiform. The Lebendun and Monte Leone folds are of similar magnitudes and also affect the whole nappe pile, whereas the smaller Mogno and Molare synforms only refold the Maggia-Simano nappe internally. Principal D 3 and D 4 structures are the tight Mergoscia Synform directly north of the Insubric Fault between Bellinzona and Locarno (Southern Steep Belt), the Maggia Steep Zone, forming the steep western limb of the Campo Tencia Synform and subdividing the Lepontine dome into the Simplon and Ticino subdomes, the Chiéra Synform steepening the dominant foliation in

  5. Multidisciplinary approach to evaluate flood damage for residential buildings: first results in Northern Italy

    Luino, Fabio


    Flooding is the most common natural instability process in Italy. Flood damage are the results of land-use planning policies which, starting chiefly from the late 1950s and early 1960s, did not take into account the geomorphologic-hydraulic characteristics of an area or the its historical data on past flood events. Historically, compared to other areas, riverside property has always been less valuable. Unfortunately, year after year, even areas of high recreational and environmental value were intensely urbanized despite their being exposed to the threat of flooding. As the number of residential dwellings, infrastructure and industrial buildings increased, what was originally a hazard became a risk. For each flood event, the damage depends on the specific land-use of the area and subsequently on the elements at risk in the area involved and its vulnerability, expressed as a percentage of the element that has actually been lost during the event. This is why a comprehensive knowledge of the area it is so important for conducting a detailed survey of an area's structures and infrastructure and to evaluate the degree of vulnerability. This paper presents first results in Italy of the European Project called DAMAGE, the first attempt by the civil protection agencies of several European Union member states to devise a common methodology for the assessment of damage caused by natural or anthropic disasters. The main objective was to create an initial tool for practical and immediate application by civil protection agencies and local governments, to assess damage in a multidimensional perspective that takes into account infrastructure, the economy, the environment and social problems. Within the framework of a broad-based project for the evaluation and collection of reports on damage caused by floods, the CNR-IRPI of Turin and Regione Lombardia have directed attention to the town of Cittiglio (province of Varese), which was struck by severe flash flood in May 2002. One of

  6. Salmonella Enterica Prevalence in Finishing Pigs at Slaughter Plants in Northern Italy

    Bacci, Cristina; Lanzoni, Elisa; Brindani, Franco; Bonardi, Silvia


    Finishing pigs carrying Salmonella enterica are believed to be the main source of carcass contamination at the beginning of slaughtering. The aim of this study was to assess the S. enterica carrier status of finishing pigs at herd level by sampling pooled faeces on farm and mesenteric lymph nodes at slaughter in the North East of Italy. Environmental faecal samples belonging to 30 batches of pigs were collected on farm. At slaughter, mesenteric lymph nodes were collected from five randomly selected pigs per batch. S. enterica was isolated from 16 lymph nodes out of 150 (10.6%) and from seven out of 30 (23.3%) faecal samples. Four batches (13.3%) were positive to S. enterica both in lymph nodes and in faeces. The number of batches positive to S. enterica either in lymph nodes or in faeces was 13 out of 30 (43.3%). The most prevalent serovars from lymph nodes were S. Derby (25.0%) and S. Typhimurium monophasic variant 1, 4,[5],12:i:- (18.6%), which were also isolated from faecal material (14.3 and 42.8% respectively). Contaminated faecal material or lymph nodes could be a primary source of carcass contamination at slaughter during evisceration. S. enterica contamination is widespread on pig farms and carrier pigs pass undetected the inspection visits at slaughter, entering the food chain. Therefore, in order to control S. enterica in pigs, the need to quantify possible risk factors at slaughter and develop effective management strategies on farm is of paramount importance to ensure food safety.

  7. Hydrochemical features of the northern Latium (central Italy) with particular reference to the Stigliano thermal springs

    Baldi, P.; Ferrara, G.C.


    A report is presented on investigations of thermo-mineral springs in part of northern Latium. Based on such physicochemical parameters as temperature, salinity and ionic content, two main water systems were determined to exist. One occurs in the volcanic surface rocks (200 to 300 m depth) and the other in a confined reservoir at a depth of 600 to 1,200 m. The study showed that the deep reservoir is a hot water system with temperatures below 100/sup 0/C. The waters of the Stigliano springs may be traced to their source even though they exhibit different chemistry. The differences seem to be due to processes of differential cooling and of fractional evaporation.

  8. Stakeholder discourse and water management in a catchment in northern Italy

    P. S. Lupo Stanghellini


    Full Text Available The Water Framework Directive (WFD; directive 2000/60/EC was created to ensure the sustainable use of water resources in the European Union. A central guideline included throughout the directive is a call for the participation of stakeholders in the management of these resources. Involving stakeholders is an important step to ensure that catchment management plans take into consideration local experience in the development of these plans and the impact of the plans on local interests. This paper describes and analyses the results of a series of workshops to facilitate implementation of the WFD at a catchment level based on the stakeholder participation model, CATCH.

    To test the usefulness of the stakeholder participation model CATCH for water management in a catchment area, a sub-catchment in an alpine valley in the north-east of Italy, the Alta Valsugana in the Province of Trento, was chosen as the setting for a series of workshops. In this valley water is fundamental for activities associated with agriculture, domestic use, energy production, sports and recreation. In the recent past the valley has had serious problems related to water quality and quantity. Implementation of water management plans under the WFD may lead to conflicts within the catchment between different stakeholder interest groups. Including stakeholders in the development of management plans not only follows the guidelines of the WFD but also could result in a more locally adapted and acceptable plan for the catchment.

    A new stakeholder analysis methodology was developed and implemented in order to identify the relevant stakeholders of the area and then two sets of workshops involving the key stakeholders identified were conducted in Spring 2006. The CATCH meetings were a new experience for the participants, who had to deal with both the principles of the WFD in general and the participation requirement in particular. During the meetings, the CATCH model

  9. The nature of annual lamination in flowstones from non-karstic fractures, Vinschgau (northern Italy)

    Koltai, Gabriella; Spötl, Christoph; Cheng, Hai


    zones in deep-seated gravitational slope deformations. The annual signal is still preserved by the δ18O values, but the development of laminae varies both in space and time. Spötl, C., Unterwurzacher, M., Mangini, A., Longstaffe, F.J., 2002: Carbonate speleothems in the dry, inneralpine Vinschgau Valley, northernmost Italy: Witnesses of changes in climate and hydrology since the Last Glacial Maximum. Journal of Sedimentary Research, 72, 793-808.

  10. The obesity gene and colorectal cancer risk: a population study in Northern Italy.

    Tarabra, E; Actis, G C; Fadda, M; De Paolis, P; Comandone, A; Coda, R; Rosina, F


    Representing the second cause of cancer-related death after lung cancer in men and breast cancer in women, colorectal cancer (CRC) is a major health problem in Italy. Obesity is reckoned to favor CRC; however, the underlying mechanisms are unclear. Recently, a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in the fat mass and obesity associated (FTO) gene was found to be significantly associated with obesity. To establish whether the FTO SNP rs9939609 may represent a risk factor for CRC and adenoma in the Italian population. 1,037 subjects were enrolled in the study and divided in 3 groups: CRC (341 pts., M/F=197/144, mean age=65.17±11.16 years), colorectal adenoma (385 pts., M/F=247/138, mean age=62.49±13.01 years), healthy controls (311 pts., M/F=150/161, mean age=57.31±13.84 years). DNA was extracted from whole blood, and stored frozen for rs9939609 genotyping by real-time PCR. The frequency of the obesity-associated mutated A allele (AA+AT) on the FTO gene was 69.77% among controls, and 71.85% and 65.71% respectively among CRC and polyp patients. Compared to control subjects the AA+AT genotype had no significant effect on the risk for either CRC (OR=1.106; CI 95%=0.788-1.550; p=0.561) or colorectal adenomas (OR=0.830; CI 95%=0.602-1.144; p=0.255). We did not observe any association between the AA genotype and CRC/polyp localization and age at diagnosis. As measured in a patient subset, carriership of the risk alleles did not reflect in a significantly altered BMI. The obesity-linked FTO variants do not play a significant role in modulating the colorectal cancer risk in the Italian population. Copyright © 2011 European Federation of Internal Medicine. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Evaluation of the risk of neighbourhood infection of H7N1 Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza in Italy using Q statistic.

    Mulatti, Paolo; Kitron, Uriel; Jacquez, Geoffrey M; Mannelli, Alessandro; Marangon, Stefano


    Exposure to the risk of neighbourhood infection was estimated for the H7N1 Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) epidemic that affected Northern Italy between 1999 and 2000. The two most affected regions (Lombardy and Veneto) were analyzed and the epidemic was divided into three phases. Q statistics were used to evaluate exposure to the risk of neighbourhood infection using two measures. First, a local Q statistic (Qikt) assessed daily exposure for each farm as a function of the number of neighbouring infected farms that were in their infectious period, weighted by the distance between farms. This allowed us to identify the daily time course of risk for each farm and, at any given time, local groups of farms defined by high risk. Second, for each farm a summary statistic of exposure risk within each phase (Qiph) was obtained by summing Qikt over the duration of each phase. This allowed identification of farms defined by persistent, high exposure risk within each phase of the epidemic. Statistical significance was evaluated using conditional Monte Carlo simulation, and significant values of Qiph were mapped to assess the variation of the risk of neighbourhood infection through the phases. Qikt was larger for farms in Lombardy and the reduction of exposed farms was more marked for Veneto. Although the highest value of Qiph was observed in Veneto, in each phase most of the significant values were in Lombardy. In the last phase of the epidemic, a large reduction in the number of farms significantly exposed to the risk of neighbourhood infection was observed in the Veneto region, along with generally low values of Qiph. This may be explained by differences in control measures in the two regions, including pre-emptive slaughtering of farms considered at high risk of infection. The Q statistic allowed us to quantify geographic, time-dynamic variations in exposure to neighbourhood infection, and to generate hypotheses on the efficacy of control measures.

  12. Nitrogen excretion in dairy cow, beef and veal cattle, pig, and rabbit farms in Northern Italy

    Giovanni Bittante


    Full Text Available Reference values for N excretion of different livestock production systems are required for the application of the Nitrate Directive (91/676/EC. A survey aimed to estimate N excretion from on-farm measurements of feed consumption and performance of dairy cows (104 herds, 9,984 cows, growing cattle (40 farms, 40,157 young bulls, veal calves (34 farms, 49,206 calves, growing pigs (39 farms, 161,278 pigs and rabbits (54 farms, 65,664 reproducing does was conducted in Veneto from 2002 to 2003. N excretion was computed as the difference between N consumption and N retained in animal products. Dairy cow yielded 8,366 ± 1,646 kg/year of milk, consumed 6,600 ± 928 kg/year of DM, containing 2.45 ± 0.2 % DM of N, and excreted 116 ± 25 kg of N/year. No significant correlation was found between milk yield and N excretion, but the correlation between dietary N concentration and N excretion was significant (r=0.66. For growing cattle, the following mean values were achieved: daily gain 1.25 ± 0.19 kg/d; feed conversion ratio 6.9 ± 0.9 kg of DM/kg, rounds/year 1.66 ± 0.38. Nitrogen consumed, retained and excreted were, respectively, 68.7 ± 5.4, 11.4 ± 1.9 and 57.3 ± 4.9 kg/place/year. For veal calves, N consumed was 24.1 ± 1.9 kg/place/year, 12.1 ± 0.8 kg of which were retained in the body and 12.0 ± 1.5 kg were excreted. For heavy pig production, N consumed, per place and per year, averaged 19.0 ± 1.9 kg, N retained was 5.2 ± 0.5 kg and N excreted was 13.8 ± 0.4 kg. In the close-cycle rabbit farms, the doe and the relative growing rabbits (43 sold per year consumed 11.2 ± 2.2 kg, retained 3.8 ± 0.7 kg and excreted 7.4 ± 1.5 kg N/doe/year. Nitrogen excretion estimated in this work can be considered as representative of some of the main animal production systems of the North-East of Italy. These values should not be considered as fixed, otherwise the implementation of the various strategies to reduce N excretion would not be possible. They




    Full Text Available Two hypercalcified sphinctozoan sponges are described from several localities of dolomitic Norian reefs of northern Calabria (southern Italy. Solenolmia? parva n. sp. occurs as an extremely abundant, albeit local, component in peculiar bioconstructions dominated by serpulids and microbialitic crusts. Discosiphonella minima Senowbari-Daryan & Link, previously recognized only in the type locality of Turkey, has been now found also as a minor component in association with other typical "Dachstein" reef biota, such as corals, sponges, microbial crusts and fragments of "microproblematica". Solenolmia? parva assemblage represents the primary framebuilder of small build-ups which developed on the margins of restricted intraplatform basins. The Discosiphonella minima assemblages were found as resedimented blocks along the slope of intraplatform anoxic basins. The distribution of the different reefal assemblages of Northern Calabria can be related to the paleogeographic position of northern Calabria with respect to the evolution of Triassic crustal extension in western Mediterranean. 

  14. Rickettsia slovaca in immature Dermacentor marginatus and tissues from Apodemus spp. in the northern Apennines, Italy.

    Martello, Elisa; Selmi, Marco; Ragagli, Charlotte; Ambrogi, Cecilia; Stella, Maria Cristina; Mannelli, Alessandro; Tomassone, Laura


    Immature Dermacentor marginatus ticks and tissues from small rodents were tested for infection with Rickettsia slovaca in the northern Apennines, Lucca Province, where tick-borne lymphadenopathy (TIBOLA) was previously reported in people. Prevalence of infestation with D. marginatus was 30.5% (n=131, 95% CI: 22.8-39.2%) in Apodemus spp. and 26.5% (n=34, 95% CI: 12.9-44.4%) in Myodes glareolus, which were captured during 1980 trap nights in 2009 and 2010. Rickettsia slovaca was identified by polymerase chain reaction, targeting the gltA and OmpA genes, in ear biopsies from 8 out of 37 tested Apodemus (22%, 95% CI: 9.8-38.2%), but not from 9 M. glareolus. The prevalence of R. slovaca in D. marginatus feeding on Apodemus spp. was 53% in larvae (n=51, 95% CI: 38.5-67.1%) and 47.5% in nymphs (n=59, 95% CI: 34.3-60.9%). No larvae (0.0%, 95% CI: 0-36.9%), but one nymph removed from M. glareolus was positive (10%, 95% CI: 0.3-44.5%). Prevalence of R. slovaca in host-seeking D. marginatus larvae, collected in the same area, was 42% (n=38; 95% CI: 26.3-59.2%). Prevalence of R. slovaca was greater in larvae feeding on PCR-positive Apodemus than in those feeding on negative mice (78.6% vs. 37.1%). Furthermore, levels of infestation with D. marginatus larvae were greater for R. slovaca-positive mice. The infection of Apodemus spp. was probably the result of repeated bites by transovarially infected larvae. On the other hand, the finding of R. slovaca in mice tissues would be compatible with transmission from these hosts to feeding D. marginatus. Based on such a hypothesis, the most heavily infested Apodemus might play a role as amplifiers of the infection.

  15. Holocene vegetation and fire history of the mountains of northern Sicily (Italy)

    Tinner, Willy; Vescovi, Elisa; Van Leeuwen, Jacqueline; Colombaroli, Daniele; Henne, Paul; Kaltenrieder, Petra; Morales-Molino, Cesar; Beffa, Giorgia; Gnaegi, Bettina; Van der Knaap, Pim W O; La Mantia, Tommaso; Pasta, Salvatore


    Knowledge about vegetation and fire history of the mountains of Northern Sicily is scanty. We analysed five sites to fill this gap and used terrestrial plant macrofossils to establish robust radiocarbon chronologies. Palynological records from Gorgo Tondo, Gorgo Lungo, Marcato Cixé, Urgo Pietra Giordano and Gorgo Pollicino show that under natural or near natural conditions, deciduous forests (Quercus pubescens, Q. cerris, Fraxinus ornus, Ulmus), that included a substantial portion of evergreen broadleaved species (Q. suber, Q. ilex, Hedera helix), prevailed in the upper meso-mediterranean belt. Mesophilous deciduous and evergreen broadleaved trees (Fagus sylvatica, Ilex aquifolium) dominated in the natural or quasi-natural forests of the oro-mediterranean belt. Forests were repeatedly opened for agricultural purposes. Fire activity was closely associated with farming, providing evidence that burning was a primary land use tool since Neolithic times. Land use and fire activity intensified during the Early Neolithic at 5000 bc, at the onset of the Bronze Age at 2500 bc and at the onset of the Iron Age at 800 bc. Our data and previous studies suggest that the large majority of open land communities in Sicily, from the coastal lowlands to the mountain areas below the thorny-cushion Astragalus belt (ca. 1,800 m a.s.l.), would rapidly develop into forests if land use ceased. Mesophilous Fagus-Ilex forests developed under warm mid Holocene conditions and were resilient to the combined impacts of humans and climate. The past ecology suggests a resilience of these summer-drought adapted communities to climate warming of about 2 °C. Hence, they may be particularly suited to provide heat and drought-adaptedFagus sylvatica ecotypes for maintaining drought-sensitive Central European beech forests under global warming conditions.

  16. Plant Responses to Climate Change: The Case Study of Betulaceae and Poaceae Pollen Seasons (Northern Italy, Vignola, Emilia-Romagna

    Anna Maria Mercuri


    Full Text Available Aerobiological data have especially demonstrated that there is correlation between climate warming and the pollination season of plants. This paper focuses on airborne pollen monitoring of Betulaceae and Poaceae, two of the main plant groups with anemophilous pollen and allergenic proprieties in Northern Italy. The aim is to investigate plant responses to temperature variations by considering long-term pollen series. The 15-year aerobiological analysis is reported from the monitoring station of Vignola (located near Modena, in the Emilia-Romagna region that had operated in the years 1990–2004 with a Hirst spore trap. The Yearly Pollen Index calculated for these two botanical families has shown contrasting trends in pollen production and release. These trends were well identifiable but fairly variable, depending on both meteorological variables and anthropogenic causes. Based on recent reference literature, we considered that some oscillations in pollen concentration could have been a main effect of temperature variability reflecting global warming. The duration of pollen seasons of Betulaceae and Poaceae, depending on the different species included in each family, has not unequivocally been determined. Phenological responses were particularly evident in Alnus and especially in Corylus as a general moving up of the end of pollination. The study shows that these trees can be affected by global warming more than other, more tolerant, plants. The research can be a contribution to the understanding of phenological plant responses to climate change and suggests that alder and hazelnut trees have to be taken into high consideration as sensible markers of plant responses to climate change.

  17. Climatic factors driving invasion of the tiger mosquito (Aedes albopictus into new areas of Trentino, northern Italy.

    David Roiz

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The tiger mosquito (Aedes albopictus, vector of several emerging diseases, is expanding into more northerly latitudes as well as into higher altitudes in northern Italy. Changes in the pattern of distribution of the tiger mosquito may affect the potential spread of infectious diseases transmitted by this species in Europe. Therefore, predicting suitable areas of future establishment and spread is essential for planning early prevention and control strategies. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: To identify the areas currently most suitable for the occurrence of the tiger mosquito in the Province of Trento, we combined field entomological observations with analyses of satellite temperature data (MODIS Land Surface Temperature: LST and human population data. We determine threshold conditions for the survival of overwintering eggs and for adult survival using both January mean temperatures and annual mean temperatures. We show that the 0°C LST threshold for January mean temperatures and the 11°C threshold for annual mean temperatures provide the best predictors for identifying the areas that could potentially support populations of this mosquito. In fact, human population density and distance to human settlements appear to be less important variables affecting mosquito distribution in this area. Finally, we evaluated the future establishment and spread of this species in relation to predicted climate warming by considering the A2 scenario for 2050 statistically downscaled at regional level in which winter and annual temperatures increase by 1.5 and 1°C, respectively. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: MODIS satellite LST data are useful for accurately predicting potential areas of tiger mosquito distribution and for revealing the range limits of this species in mountainous areas, predictions which could be extended to an European scale. We show that the observed trend of increasing temperatures due to climate change could facilitate further

  18. Cervical cancer epidemiology in foreign women in Northern Italy: role of human papillomavirus prevalence in country of origin.

    Di Felice, Enza; Caroli, Stefania; Paterlini, Luisa; Campari, Cinzia; Prandi, Sonia; Giorgi Rossi, Paolo


    This study compares the incidence and treatments of cervical neoplasia in foreigners from high migration countries and Italians in the Reggio Emilia province (Northern Italy) in 2002-2009. Standardized incidence ratios (SIRs) and 95% confidence intervals (95% CI) for cervical intraepithelial neoplasia grade 3 (CIN3) and cancer were calculated for foreigners versus Italian women; foreigners were also classified according to the prevalence of human papillomavirus (HPV) in their country of origin. The proportion of hysterectomies is presented as an indicator of inappropriate surgery in CIN3 and microinvasive cancers. A higher risk was observed in women from high human papillomavirus prevalence countries (HHPVC) both for cancer and for CIN3 (SIR=4.1, 95% CI=2.2-6.9; SIR=2.0, 95% CI 1.7-2.5, respectively), whereas in those from low human papillomavirus prevalence countries (LHPVC), no difference for cancer and a lower risk for CIN3 were observed (SIR=1.0, 95% CI 0.2-2.2; SIR=0.6, 95% CI 0.4-0.8, respectively). A lower CIN3/cancer ratio was found in women from HHPVC (2.6) and in women from LHPVC (3.6) than in Italians (7.4). The percentage of hysterectomies for CIN3 or microinvasive cancers was 3.4 in foreigners and 4.7 in Italians. A higher risk of cervical cancer was found in women from HHPVC compared with Italians and women from LHPVC, suggesting a role of HPV prevalence in the country of origin in the excess risk. The CIN3/cancer ratio was lower for both women from HHPVC and women from LHPVC, also suggesting a role of low screening uptake for cervical cancer incidence in immigrants.

  19. Plant Responses to Climate Change: The Case Study of Betulaceae and Poaceae Pollen Seasons (Northern Italy, Vignola, Emilia-Romagna)

    Mercuri, Anna Maria; Torri, Paola; Fornaciari, Rita; Florenzano, Assunta


    Aerobiological data have especially demonstrated that there is correlation between climate warming and the pollination season of plants. This paper focuses on airborne pollen monitoring of Betulaceae and Poaceae, two of the main plant groups with anemophilous pollen and allergenic proprieties in Northern Italy. The aim is to investigate plant responses to temperature variations by considering long-term pollen series. The 15-year aerobiological analysis is reported from the monitoring station of Vignola (located near Modena, in the Emilia-Romagna region) that had operated in the years 1990–2004 with a Hirst spore trap. The Yearly Pollen Index calculated for these two botanical families has shown contrasting trends in pollen production and release. These trends were well identifiable but fairly variable, depending on both meteorological variables and anthropogenic causes. Based on recent reference literature, we considered that some oscillations in pollen concentration could have been a main effect of temperature variability reflecting global warming. The duration of pollen seasons of Betulaceae and Poaceae, depending on the different species included in each family, has not unequivocally been determined. Phenological responses were particularly evident in Alnus and especially in Corylus as a general moving up of the end of pollination. The study shows that these trees can be affected by global warming more than other, more tolerant, plants. The research can be a contribution to the understanding of phenological plant responses to climate change and suggests that alder and hazelnut trees have to be taken into high consideration as sensible markers of plant responses to climate change. PMID:27929423

  20. Integration of Remote Sensing Techniques for Intensity Zonation within a Landslide Area: A Case Study in the Northern Apennines, Italy

    Veronica Tofani


    Full Text Available This paper describes the application of remote sensing techniques, based on SAR interferometry for the intensity zonation of the landslide affecting the Castagnola village (Northern Apennines of Liguria region, Italy. The study of the instability conditions of the landslide started in 2001 with the installation of conventional monitoring systems, such as inclinometers and crackmeters, ranging in time from April 2001 to April 2002, which allowed to define the deformation rates of the landslide and to locate the actual landslide sliding surface, as well as to record the intensity of the damages and cracks affecting the buildings located within the landslide perimeter. In order to investigate the past long-term evolution of the ground movements a PSI (Persistent Scatterers Interferometry analysis has been performed making use of a set of ERS1/ERS2 images acquired in 1992–2001 period. The outcome of the PSI analysis has allowed to confirm the landslide extension as mapped within the official landslide inventory map as well as to reconstruct the past line-of-sight average velocities of the landslide and the time-series deformations. Following the high velocities detected by the PSI, and the extensive damages surveyed in the buildings of the village, the Ground-Based Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (GBInSAR system has been installed. The GBInSAR monitoring system has been equipped during October 2008 and three distinct campaigns have been carried out from October 2008 until March 2009. The interpretation of the data has allowed deriving a multi-temporal deformation map of the landslide, showing the up-to-date displacement field and the average landslide velocity. A new landslide boundary has been defined and two landslide sectors characterized by different displacement rates have been identified.

  1. Geochemical characterization and biomonitoring of reclaimed soils in the Po River Delta (Northern Italy): implications for the agricultural activities.

    Di Giuseppe, Dario; Bianchini, Gianluca; Vittori Antisari, Livia; Martucci, Annalisa; Natali, Claudio; Beccaluva, Luigi


    This geochemical study is focused on the easternmost part of the Po River alluvial plain in Northern Italy, which is interested by widespread agricultural activities, investigating a reclaimed sector of the Province of Ferrara, known as "Valle del Mezzano" (Mezzano Low Land, hereafter reported as MLL) characterized by peat-rich soils. The chemical-mineralogical characterization of these reclaimed soils is important to compare the local geochemical backgrounds with those recorded in other sectors of the River Po plain and to monitor if the observed concentration exceeds critical thresholds. The reported analyses include (a) measurement of the soil salinity, (b) nutrient evaluation, (c) major and trace element concentrations carried out on bulk soils, (d) tests of metal extraction with both aqua regia and EDTA to highlight the distinct elemental mobility and (e) phyto-toxicological measurement of heavy metal concentrations in plants (Lactuca sativa acephala) grown on the studied soils. The results indicate (1) high soil salinity, often with drastic increase of sodium and chloride along the soil profiles, (2) high nitrogen content (in part related to anthropogenic activities) on superficial horizons and nitrate decrease along the soil profiles and (3) comparative enrichments in heavy metals with respect to other soils of the province, which indicate that peat deposits are effective in trapping metals from anthropogenic sources. This, in turn, implies potential geochemical risks for the agricultural activities. In this regard, specific concerns are related to the high nickel and arsenic content of MLL soils due to the mobility of these elements and their attitude to be taken up by plants.

  2. The traditional irrigation technique of Lake Garda lemon--houses (Northern Italy)

    Barontini, Stefano; Vitale, Nicola; Fausti, Federico; Bettoni, Barbara; Bonati, Sara; Peli, Marco; Pietta, Antonella; Tononi, Marco; Ranzi, Roberto


    Between 16th and 19th centuries the North-Western side of Lake Garda was seat of an important district which, at the time of its maximum splendour between 18th and 19th centuries, produced and exported lemons and citrus even toward the Northern Europe and the Russia. The limonaie del Garda (Lake-Garda lemon-houses), the local name of the citrus orchards, were settled on terraces built on steep slopes, with landfill taken from the Eastern side of the lake, and closed by greenhouses during late autumn and winter in order to protect the cultivations. The terraces were built nearby streams, they were South-Eastern exposed and protected by walls from the cold winds. Thanks in fact to the Lake Garda microclimate, lemon trees were not cultivated in pots, as in the typical orangeries of mid-latitudes Europe, but directly in the soil. Here the citrus cultivation technique reached a remarkably high degree of standardisation, with local cultivar as the Madernino or lemon from Maderno, and it involved, as in modern industrial districts, all the surrounding land in order to satisfy the needing of required materials to build the terraces, the walls, the greenhouses and the wooden frames to hold the branches laden with fruits. Due to the great water requirement of lemon trees during summer, which is estimated to range from 150 to 300 ℓ every ten days, the water management played a key role in the cultivation technique. The traditional irrigation technique was standardized as well. During our surveys, we observed that most of the lemon-houses still conserve little stone flumes along the walls upslope to the terraces, with spillways every adult tree, i.e. about every 4 m. The flumes were filled with water taken from an upstream reservoir, built nearby a stream. The spillways were activated with a backwater obtained by means of a sand bag placed within the flume, just downstream to the spillway itself. In order to avoid any excavation, spilled water was driven to the base of each

  3. Assessment of Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. israelensis Strain AM65-52 aqueous suspension for the control of black fly populations, (Simulium spp.) in northern Italy

    P. Radeghieri; Santi, F.; Maini, S.


    Four field trials were conducted in Mantua province in northern Italy to evaluate the effect of the Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. israelensis Strain AM65-52 based VectoBac® 12 AS larvicide on black flies. Our objective was to examine and compare the efficacy of different concentrations of this microbial larvicide in small plain streams. Larvicidal activity was exhibited in all trials. VectoBac® 12 AS at 2.5 ppm/min rate generated larval mortality from the treatment point to 500 meters downstr...




    Full Text Available For the first time fossil macroscopic remains of charcoal as direct evidence of palaeo-wildfires from the Late Permian Gröden Formation of the Bletterbach-Butterloch area in Northern Italy is described. The charcoal consists of pycnoxylic wood and originates from gymnosperms, but a more specific affiliation is not possible due to the fragmentary nature of the material. On a global scale our knowledge about Late Permian fire-ecology is still rather scarce and this finding helps to fill one of the numerous geographical gaps in our current knowledge about Late Permian wildfires. 

  5. Reconstruction of full glacial environments and summer temperatures from Lago della Costa, a refugial site in Northern Italy

    Samartin, Stéphanie; Heiri, Oliver; Kaltenrieder, Petra; Kühl, Norbert; Tinner, Willy


    Vegetation and climate during the last ice age and the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM, ∼23,000-19,000 cal BP) were considerably different than during the current interglacial (Holocene). Cold climatic conditions and growing ice-sheets during the last glaciation radically reduced forest extent in Europe to a restricted number of so-called "refugia", mostly located in the southern part of the continent. On the basis of paleobotanical analyses the Euganian Hills (Colli Euganei) in northeastern Italy have previously been proposed as one of the northernmost refugia of temperate trees (e.g. deciduous Quercus, Tilia, Ulmus, Fraxinus excelsior, Acer, Abies alba, Fagus sylvatica, Carpinus and Castanea) in Europe. In this study we provide the first quantitative, vegetation independent summer air temperature reconstruction for Northern Italy spanning the time ∼31,000-17,000 cal yr BP, which covers the coldest periods of the last glacial, including the LGM and Heinrich stadials 1 to 3. Chironomids preserved in a lake sediment core from Lago della Costa (7m a.s.l.), a small lake at the south-eastern edge of the Euganean Hills, allowed quantitative reconstruction of Full and Late Glacial summer air temperatures using a combined Swiss-Norwegian temperature inference model based on chironomid assemblages from 274 lakes. Chironomid and pollen evidence from Lago della Costa derives from finely stratified autochthonous organic gyttja sediments, which excludes major sediment mixing or reworking. After reconstructing paleo-temperatures, we address the question whether climate conditions were warm enough to permit the local survival of temperate tree species during the LGM and whether local expansions and pollen-inferred contractions of temperate tree taxa coincided with chironomid-inferred climatic changes. Our results suggest that chironomids at Lago della Costa have responded to major climatic fluctuations such as temperature decreases during the LGM and Heinrich stadials. The

  6. Sedimentological and geochronological evidences of anthropogenic impacts on river basins in the Northern Latium coastal area (Italy)

    Piazzolla, Daniele; Paladini de Mendoza, Francesco; Scanu, Sergio; Marcelli, Marco


    In this work we aimed to compare sedimentological and geochronological data from three sediment core samples (MIG50, MRT50, and GRT50) taken in the Northern Latium (Italy) coastal area, at -50 m depth, to data regarding rainfall, river flows and the land use in the three most important hydrographic basins (Mignone, Marta and Fiora) and in the coastal area. Different trends of sediment mass accumulation rate (MAR) are detected in the three cores: a strongly increasing trend was identified in MIG50 and MRT50 cores while GRT50 doesn't show significant variation. Data from the sedimentological analysis of GRT50 core identify a progressive decrease in the sandy component, which declined from about 30% to the current level of 7% over the last 36 years, while MRT50 and MIG50 cores (mainly composed by pelitic fraction > 95%) showed slight variations of textural ratio between silt and clay. According to the general decrease of pluviometric trend observed in Italy, related to teleconnection pattern tendency (NAO), the statistical analysis of rain identified significative decrease only in the Fiora river basin, whereas in the other two locations the decrease was not as significant. Regarding the Fiora river flow, a significative decreasing trend of average flow is detected, while the flood regime remained unaffected over the past 30 years. The analysis of the land use shows that the human activities are increased of 6-10% over the available time steps (1990 - 2006) in Fiora and Mignone river basins, while the Marta river basin has a strong human impact since 1990 highligting more than 80% of artificial soil covering. The largest variation is observed on the Fiora basin (10%) where the antrhopic activities have expanded to an area of about 85 Km2. Moreover, in the last ten years a large beach nourishment in 2004 (570000 m3) and dredging activities in the early second half of 2000s (1000000 m3 moved) were performed in Marina di Tarquinia beach and in front of the Torrevaldaliga

  7. Late Glacial to Holocene environmental variabilities: A new multi-proxy paleolimnological study of sedimentary sequences from Como (northern Italy)

    Höbig, N.; Martinelli, E.; Motella, S.; Michetti, A. M.; Livio, F.; Tinner, W.; Reicherter, K.; Castelletti, L.


    Lake Como (northern Italy) is the deepest Italian lake, reaching a depth of about 425 m. The lambda-shaped lake expands about 45 km in NE-SW direction. Southwards of the hydrologically closed western branch, two sediment cores of 70 m (S1) and 65 m length (S2) were taken in the year 2005 close to the cathedral of Como (Piazza Verdi). The drilling sites are located in the middle of the Southern Alps, some 300 m from the present-day lakeshore. The cores provide the first detailed Late Glacial to Holocene multi-proxy record for the Lake Como basin. Our research is aimed at investigating the environmental and geological evolution of the Insubria Region. The multi-proxy study of the stratigraphic sequences contain geophysical, geotechnical, sedimentological, paleobotanical, and radiocarbon analyses. They have been performed for core S1 and are still in progress on core S2. With this data the working group focuses on two main issues. The first topic is the reconstruction of the natural and anthropogenic processes controlling the ground subsidence in the Como urban area (e.g., Comerci et al., 2007) and another aim is to reconstruct vegetation and land-use dynamics. In particular, 150 samples of vegetal macroremains have been collected in the palustrine deposits along S1 core, down to 31,00 m. Below this depth (dated 14C 12,496 ± 55 yr BP - 15,050 - 14,250 cal yr BP), the amount of plant macroremains in the sediment drops dramatically. The taxonomic determination was carried out on more than 800 macroremains. They are represented by fragments of wood, leaves, needles, seeds, fruits, mosses and tiny charcoals (Motella, 2009, unpublished PhD Thesis). Picea/Larix, Pinus sp., Juniperus with Betula, found in the deeper levels (30.80 - 30.00 m), are the first arboreal taxa that colonized the shores of Lake Como, and show that the reforestation began in this area about 16,000 years ago. During the early Holocene (25.10 m) Abies alba expanded and further upwards the sequence

  8. The Crati River Basin: geomorphological and stratigraphical data for the Plio–Quaternary evolution of northern Calabria, South Apennines, Italy

    Robustelli Gaetano


    Full Text Available In this paper, we present the results of an integrated geomorphological and stratigraphical study carried out in the eastern side of the Crati River valley (northern Calabria, South Italy. This area is characterized by the occurrence of three order palaeosurfaces that, along with low-sloping palaeovalleys and structural landforms, are striking features of the landscape. The relationships between morpho-tectonic and sedimentary evolution of the Crati Basin has been assessed through sandstone detrital modes, morphostratigraphy and geomorphological correlation with adjacent areas. The two main unconformity surfaces that typify the Quaternary fill were correlated to different steps of landscape evolution. The presence of both erosional and depositional palaeosurfaces has been a useful marker for reconstructing sedimentary and morphogenetic events, and hence to detect drainage network evolution and changes in source sediment area. In particular, we recognized that the study area experienced, during the late Pliocene–Early Pleistocene a period of sub-aerial landscape modelling as suggested by low-sloping palaeovalleys and related fluvial deposits (1st Order Palaeosurface. At that time, the source of the detrital constituents of the PPS Unit sandstones was mainly from the Sila Massif. The onset of Coastal Range identification and uplift (Early Pleistocene marks a change in the geomorphic scenario with tectonic driven stream incision and valley development along the eastern side of Coastal Range, along with the occurrence of depositional and erosional landsurfaces (2nd Order Palaeosurface at footslopes. During this period, the Coastal Range and Sila Massif were the sources for the detrital constituents of the PlS Unit sandstones. The progressive uplift of Coastal Range during late Early Pleistocene and the marked backstepping of the depositional systems along the Sila footslope was accompanied by alternating phases of down-cutting and base

  9. The Crati River Basin: geomorphological and stratigraphical data for the Plio-Quaternary evolution of northern Calabria, South Apennines, Italy

    Robustelli, Gaetano; Muto, Francesco


    In this paper, we present the results of an integrated geomorphological and stratigraphical study carried out in the eastern side of the Crati River valley (northern Calabria, South Italy). This area is characterized by the occurrence of three order palaeosurfaces that, along with low-sloping palaeovalleys and structural landforms, are striking features of the landscape. The relationships between morpho-tectonic and sedimentary evolution of the Crati Basin has been assessed through sandstone detrital modes, morphostratigraphy and geomorphological correlation with adjacent areas. The two main unconformity surfaces that typify the Quaternary fill were correlated to different steps of landscape evolution. The presence of both erosional and depositional palaeosurfaces has been a useful marker for reconstructing sedimentary and morphogenetic events, and hence to detect drainage network evolution and changes in source sediment area. In particular, we recognized that the study area experienced, during the late Pliocene-Early Pleistocene a period of sub-aerial landscape modelling as suggested by low-sloping palaeovalleys and related fluvial deposits (1st Order Palaeosurface). At that time, the source of the detrital constituents of the PPS Unit sandstones was mainly from the Sila Massif. The onset of Coastal Range identification and uplift (Early Pleistocene) marks a change in the geomorphic scenario with tectonic driven stream incision and valley development along the eastern side of Coastal Range, along with the occurrence of depositional and erosional landsurfaces (2nd Order Palaeosurface) at footslopes. During this period, the Coastal Range and Sila Massif were the sources for the detrital constituents of the PlS Unit sandstones. The progressive uplift of Coastal Range during late Early Pleistocene and the marked backstepping of the depositional systems along the Sila footslope was accompanied by alternating phases of down-cutting and base-level stability resulting in

  10. Natural background levels and threshold values of chemical species in three large-scale groundwater bodies in Northern Italy

    Molinari, Antonio, E-mail: [Politecnico di Milano, Dipartimento di Ingegneria Idraulica, Ambientale, Infrastrutture Viarie e Rilevamento, Piazza L. Da Vinci, 32-20133 Milano (Italy); Guadagnini, Laura [Politecnico di Milano, Dipartimento di Ingegneria Idraulica, Ambientale, Infrastrutture Viarie e Rilevamento, Piazza L. Da Vinci, 32-20133 Milano (Italy); Marcaccio, Marco [ARPA Emilia-Romagna, Direzione Tecnica, Largo Caduti del Lavoro, 6-40122 Bologna (Italy); Guadagnini, Alberto [Politecnico di Milano, Dipartimento di Ingegneria Idraulica, Ambientale, Infrastrutture Viarie e Rilevamento, Piazza L. Da Vinci, 32-20133 Milano (Italy)


    We analyze natural background levels (NBLs) and threshold values (TVs) of spatially distributed chemical species (NH{sub 4}, B and As) which may be a potential pressure and concern in three large scale alluvial and fluvio-deltaic aquifers at different depths of the Apennines and Po river plains in Emilia-Romagna, Northern Italy. Our results are based on statistical methodologies designed to separate the natural and anthropogenic contributions in monitored concentrations by modeling the empirical distribution of the detected concentration with a mixture of probability density functions. Available chemical observations are taken over a 20 years period and are associated with different depths and cover planar investigation scales of the order of hundreds of kilometers. High concentration values detected for NH{sub 4} and B appear to be related to high natural background levels. Due to interaction with the host rock in different geochemical environments we observed that concentration vary in time and space (including in depth) consistently with the hydrogeochemical features and the occurrence of natural attenuation mechanisms in the analyzed reservoirs. Conversely, estimated As NBLs are not consistent with the conceptual model of the hydrogeochemical behavior of the systems analyzed and experimental evidences of As content in aquifer cores. This is due to the inability of these techniques to incorporate the complex dynamics of the processes associated with the specific hydrogeochemical setting. Statistical analyses performed upon aggregating the concentration data according to different time observation windows allow identifying temporal dynamics of NBLs and TVs of target compounds within the observation time frame. Our results highlight the benefit of a dynamic monitoring process and analysis of well demarcated groundwater bodies to update the associated NBLs as a function of the temporal dependence of natural processes occurring in the subsurface. Monitoring

  11. Thallium-rich rust scales in drinkable water distribution systems: A case study from northern Tuscany, Italy.

    Biagioni, Cristian; D'Orazio, Massimo; Lepore, Giovanni O; d'Acapito, Francesco; Vezzoni, Simone


    Following the detection of a severe thallium contamination of the drinkable water from the public distribution system of Valdicastello Carducci-Pietrasanta (northern Tuscany, Italy), and the identification of the source of contamination in the Molini di Sant'Anna spring (average Tl content≈15μgL(-1)), the replacement of the contaminated water with a virtually Tl-free one (Tl<0.10μgL(-1)) caused an increase in Tl concentration in the drinkable water. This suggested that the pipeline interior had become a secondary source of Tl contamination, promoting its mineralogical and geochemical study. Rust scales samples taken from several pipeline segments, as well as leaching products obtained from these samples, were investigated through scanning electron microscopy, X-ray fluorescence chemical analyses, inductively coupled plasma - mass spectrometry, X-ray diffraction, and X-ray absorption spectroscopy. Thallium-rich rust scales (up to 5.3wt% Tl) have been found only in pipeline samples taken downstream the water treatment plant, whereas the sample taken upstream contains much less Tl (~90μgg(-1)). The Tl-rich nature of such scales is related to the occurrence of nano- and micro-spherules of Tl2O3 and less abundant nanocrystalline μm-sized encrustations of TlCl. Leaching experiments on Tl-rich rust scales indicate that a fraction of the available Tl is easily dissolved in tap water; X-ray absorption spectroscopy suggests that monovalent thallium occurs in water equilibrated with the rust scales, probably related to the dissolution of TlCl encrustations. Therefore, Tl dissolved as Tl(+) only in the water from the Molini di Sant'Anna spring was partially removed through oxidative precipitation of Tl2O3 and precipitation of TlCl. This highlights the critical role played by the addition of chlorine-based oxidants in water treatment plants that could favour the deposition of Tl-rich coatings within the pipelines, giving rise to unexpected secondary sources of

  12. Milankovitch orbital cycles encoded by diagenetic iron sulfides in Neogene sediments, Stirone River section, Northern Apennines, Italy

    Gunderson, K. L.; Kodama, K. P.; Anastasio, D. J.; Pazzaglia, F. J.


    We used rock magnetic parameters to identify Milankovitch orbital cycles in the marine sediments of the Messinian-Early Pleistocene Stirone River section, Northern Apennines, Italy. These measurements provide excellent proxies for subtle changes in depositional environment, including climate, in stratigraphic sections where facies variations are not evident. We measured 636 meters of section and collected samples every 1 meter, for which we measured magnetic susceptibility (MS), natural remanent magnetization (NRM), anhysteretic magnetization in a 40 mT peak alternating field(40mT ARM), and anhysteretic remanent magnetization in a 100 mT peak alternating field (100mT ARM). We present the results of our time-series analysis of the MS, 40mT ARM, and 100mT ARM stratigraphic series for 310 meters of section, encompassing the time period between 3.1 My and 1.8 My. During this time period, the power spectra produced from the MS stratigraphic series exhibits peaks with frequencies at 1/24m, 1/10m, and 1/6m. Based on our calculated mean sedimentation rate of 0.24 m/ky, we interpret the spectral peaks to be associated with the eccentricity, obliquity, and precessional orbital cycles, respectively. The 40mT ARM spectra exhibits peaks at similar periodicities, but the corresponding spectral peaks are broader and the spectral power is much lower. The 100mT ARM spectra shows an increase in spectral power with respect to the 40mT ARM, but it also exhibits broad spectral peaks. Low temperature (77 K) susceptibility (LT-MS) and isothermal remanent magnetization (IRM) acquisition experiments were conducted to determine which magnetic minerals carry the MS signal. The observed increase of the MS at low temperature (6-140%) was not large enough to conclude that the MS is dominated by paramagnetic grains. IRM acquisition modeling indicates two components of magnetization: (1) a major component comprising ~85% of the magnetization with a mean coercivity of 67 mT and (2) a minor

  13. Climate control on sulphate and nitrate concentrations in alpine streams of Northern Italy along a nitrogen saturation gradient

    M. Rogora


    Full Text Available The role of meteorology, hydrology and atmospheric deposition on the temporal pattern of SO4 and NO3 concentrations was investigated for three streams draining alpine catchments in Northern Italy.

    The study sites lie on a gradient of atmospheric fluxes of SO4 and NO3 (from about 50 to 80 meq m−2 y−1, and from 40 to 90 meq m−2 y−1, respectively. As a consequence of the increasing N input, the three catchments are also representative of aggrading levels of N saturation. Different methods of statistical analysis were applied to monthly data for the period 1997–2005 to identify which variables (temperature, precipitation, hydrology, SO4 and NO3 deposition were the main predictors of water chemistry and its change in time. Hydrological changes and snow cover proved to be the main confounding factors in the response to atmospheric deposition in the River Masino catchment. Its particular characteristics (small catchment area, rapid flushing during runoff and thin soil cover meant that this site responded without a significant delay to SO4 deposition decrease. It also showed a clear seasonal pattern of NO3 concentration, in response to hydrology and biological uptake in the growing season.

    The selected driving variables failed to model the water chemistry at the other study sites. Nevertheless, temperature, especially extreme values, turned out to be important in both SO4 and NO3 export from the catchments. This result might be largely explained by the effect of warm periods on temperature-dependent processes such as mineralization, nitrification and S desorption.

    Our findings suggest that surface waters in the alpine area will be extremely sensitive to a climate warming scenario: higher temperatures and increasing frequency of drought could exacerbate the effects

  14. Climate control on sulphate and nitrate concentrations in alpine streams of Northern Italy along a nitrogen saturation gradient

    M. Rogora


    Full Text Available The role of meteorology, hydrology and atmospheric deposition on the temporal pattern of SO4 and NO3 concentrations was investigated for three streams draining alpine catchments in Northern Italy.

    The study sites lie on a gradient of atmospheric fluxes of SO4 and NO3 (from about 50 to 80 meq m−2 y−1, and from 40 to 90 meq m−2 y−1, respectively. As a consequence of the increasing N input, the three catchments are also representative of aggrading levels of N saturation. Different methods of statistical analysis were applied to monthly data for the period 1997–2005 to identify which variables (temperature, precipitation, hydrology, SO4 and NO3 deposition were the main predictors of water chemistry and its change in time. Hydrological changes and snow cover proved to be the main confounding factors in the response to atmospheric deposition in the River Masino catchment. Its particular characteristics (small catchment area, rapid flushing during runoff and thin soil cover meant that this site responded without a significant delay to SO4 deposition decrease. It also showed a clear seasonal pattern of NO3 concentration, in response to hydrology and biological uptake in the growing season. The selected driving variables failed to model the water chemistry at the other study sites. Nevertheless, temperature, especially extreme values, turned out to be important in both SO4 and NO3 export from the catchments. This result might be largely explained by the effect of warm periods on temperature-dependent processes such as mineralization, nitrification and S desorption. Our findings suggest that surface waters in the alpine area will be extremely sensitive to a climate warming scenario: higher temperatures and increasing frequency of drought could exacerbate the effects of high chronic N

  15. Personal and occupational risk factors for carpal tunnel syndrome in meat processing industry workers in Northern Italy

    Matteo Riccò


    Full Text Available Background: Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS is a musculoskeletal condition that often impairs the fitness to work. Our aim is to retrospectively evaluate the association between physical exposures in meat processing industry in Northern Italy and the CTS, taking into account non-occupational factors. Material and Methods: A cross-sectional study was performed to include 434 workers (236 males, 198 females, 37.0±10.6 years old, working age: 12.6±10.8 years from meat processing industries. Signs and symptoms were collected at the compulsory occupational medical surveillance. Occupational risk factors were assessed through a questionnaire and direct assessment by investigators. Adjusted odds ratios (ORadj for factors of interest were estimated through binary logistic regression. Results: Diagnosis of the CTS was reported for 61 out of 434 subjects (14.1% for an incidence of 11.3/1000 person- years. In general, signs and symptoms for the CTS were associated with the following demographic factors: smoking history (OR = 1.909, 95% confidence interval (CI: 1.107–3.293, previous traumas of the upper limb (OR = 3.533, 95% CI: 1.743–7.165, hypothyroidism status (OR = 7.897, 95% CI: 2.917–21.38 and, in the case of female participants only, previous pregnancies (OR = 2.807, 95% CI: 1.200–6.566 as well as a personal history of oral contraceptive therapy and/or steroidal replacement therapy (OR = 11.57, 95% CI: 4.689–28.56. The carpal tunnel syndrome cases were associated with the following occupational factors (> 4 h/day: forceful hand exertion (ORadj = 3.548, 95% CI: 1.379–9.131, repeated trauma of the hand (ORadj = 3.602, 95% CI: 1.248– 10.395, repeated movements of the wrist (ORadj = 2.561, 95% CI: 1.100–5.960. Conclusions: Increasing levels of hand activity and force were associated with the increased CTS prevalence among participants. Recommendations have to be provided in order to reduce occupational exposure to these risk factors and

  16. Personal and occupational risk factors for carpal tunnel syndrome in meat processing industry workers in Northern Italy.

    Riccò, Matteo; Signorelli, Carlo


    Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) is a musculoskeletal condition that often impairs the fitness to work. Our aim is to retrospectively evaluate the association between physical exposures in meat processing industry in Northern Italy and the CTS, taking into account non-occupational factors. A cross-sectional study was performed to include 434 workers (236 males, 198 females, 37.0±10.6 years old, working age: 12.6±10.8 years) from meat processing industries. Signs and symptoms were collected at the compulsory occupational medical surveillance. Occupational risk factors were assessed through a questionnaire and direct assessment by investigators. Adjusted odds ratios (ORadj) for factors of interest were estimated through binary logistic regression. Diagnosis of the CTS was reported for 61 out of 434 subjects (14.1%) for an incidence of 11.3/1000 person- years. In general, signs and symptoms for the CTS were associated with the following demographic factors: smoking history (OR = 1.909, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.107-3.293), previous traumas of the upper limb (OR = 3.533, 95% CI: 1.743-7.165), hypothyroidism status (OR = 7.897, 95% CI: 2.917-21.38) and, in the case of female participants only, previous pregnancies (OR = 2.807, 95% CI: 1.200-6.566) as well as a personal history of oral contraceptive therapy and/or steroidal replacement therapy (OR = 11.57, 95% CI: 4.689-28.56). The carpal tunnel syndrome cases were associated with the following occupational factors (> 4 h/day): forceful hand exertion (ORadj = 3.548, 95% CI: 1.379-9.131), repeated trauma of the hand (ORadj = 3.602, 95% CI: 1.248- 10.395), repeated movements of the wrist (ORadj = 2.561, 95% CI: 1.100-5.960). Increasing levels of hand activity and force were associated with the increased CTS prevalence among participants. Recommendations have to be provided in order to reduce occupational exposure to these risk factors and improve medical surveillance. Med Pr 2017;68(2):199-209.

  17. Evaluation of intrinsic groundwater vulnerability to pollution: COP method for pilot area of Carrara hydrogeological system (Northern Tuscany, Italy)

    Baldi, B.; Guastaldi, E.; Rossetto, R.


    During the characterization of the Apuan Alps groundwater body ( "Corpo Idrico Sotterraneo Significativo", briefly CISS) (Regione Toscana, 2007) the intrinsic vulnerability has been evaluated for Carrara hydrogeological system (Northern Tuscany, Italy) by means of COP method, developed within COST 620 European Action (Zwalhlen, 2003). This system is both characterized by large data availability and it is considered an highly risky zone since groundwater protection problems (turbidity of the tapped spring waters and hydrocarbons contamination) and anthropic activity (marble quarries). The study area, 20 Km2large, has high relief energy, with elevations ranging from 5 to 1700 m amsl in almost 5 km. Runoff is scarce except during heavy rainfall; due to the presence of carbonate rocks infiltration is high: groundwater discharge at 155-255 m amsl. The area is located in the north-western part of Apuan Alps Metamorphic Complex, characterized by carbonate and non-carbonate rocks belonging to the non-metamorphic Tuscan Units (Carnic-Oligocene), Mesozoic Succession, Middle-Triassic Succession, and metamorphic Paleozoic rocks. The main geological structure of the area is the Carrara Syncline, constituted prevalently by dolostones, marbles and cherty limestones. These carbonate formations define several moderately to highly productive hydrogeological units, characterized by fissured and karst flow. Hydrogeological system may be subdivided in two different subsets, because of both geo-structural set up and area conformation. However, these are hydrogeologically connected since anisotropy and fractures of karst groundwater. The southern boundary of Carrara hydrogeological system shows important dammed springs, defined by low productive units of Massa Unit (Cambriano?-Carnic). COP methodology for evaluating intrinsic vulnerability of karst groundwater is based on three main factors for the definition of vulnerability itself: COPIndex = C (flow Concentration) *O (Overlying layers

  18. Wavelet analysis of remote sensing and discharge data for understanding vertical ground movements in sandy and clayey terrains of the Po Delta area (Northern Italy)

    Vitagliano, Eleonora; Di Maio, Rosa; Scafetta, Nicola; Calcaterra, Domenico; Zanchettin, Davide


    Subsidence phenomena change the proneness of urban and coastal areas to huge flooding, particularly, in river delta regions. Many natural and/or anthropic processes can induce vertical ground movements; identifying the causes of the observed phenomena is a useful, even if not easy, task for flood forecasting. In order to improve the knowledge of natural versus anthropic contributions to vertical ground movements, in the present work data analysis techniques (polynomial regression analysis, frequency analysis and cross wavelet and wavelet coherence analysis) are used to analyze both the long- and short-time scale dependencies between Continuous Global Positioning System (CGPS) and variations of meteorological, hydrogeological and hydrological data collected in the Po River Delta area (Northern Italy) from January 2009 to December 2015. The main findings are as follows: (i) occurrence of positive correlations and periodic oscillations of about 2-3 years for all the analyzed meteorological, hydrogeological and hydrological records; (ii) a general decrease of the ground level with a faster soil lowering in clayey terrain with respect to sandy terrain; and, (iii) negative correlations between CGPS and Po River discharge records at the intra-annual scale (2-6 months), which are attributed to an isostatic rebound induced by the change of the river discharge due to precipitation changes over northern Italy.

  19. Spread of CTX-M-type ESßLs in isolates of E. coli from long-term care and rehabilitation facilities in Northern Italy

    Elisabetta Nucleo


    Full Text Available During the period March 2003 – May 2004 at the Laboratory of Clinical Microbiology “Redaelli” LTCRF in Milan, Italy, a total of 529 E. coli, obtained from inpatients of 3 different Long Term Care Rehabilitation Facilities (LTCRFs in Northern Italy, were processed and 77 ESßLs producers (14.5% were identified by Vitek System. The results were confirmed by double-disk synergy test with tazobactam (TZP. 61/77 isolates were characterized by higher levels of resistance to cefotaxime (CTX than to ceftazidime (CAZ. (ß-lactamase production was investigated by analytical isoelectric focusing (IEF coupled with a bioassay and showed multiple (ß-lactamase bands including one enzyme with pI 8.4 that, in a bioassay, was more active on CTX,ATM than on CAZ. The presence of (ß-lactamase genes was investigated by colony blot hybridization and by PCR amplification of blaTEM, blaSHV and blaCTX-M alleles. 43/61 isolates produced both TEM-1 and CTX-M-type enzymes, 14/61 expressed only CTX-M-type while in 4 cases were found blaCTX-M, blaTEM and blaSHV genes.The remainders (16/77, characterized by high levels of resistance to both CTX and CAZ, produced TEM-1 and SHV-5 enzymes (1/16 and TEM type ESßLs (15/16. Conjugation experiments, performed in liquid medium, confermed that the ESßLs determinants were transferable. Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis profiles of genomic DNA, digested with NotI, were analysed and revealed clonal heterogeneity. Our work confirms the emergence of CTX-M-type enzymes and their spread in Northern Italy also in longterm care and rehabilitation facilities that may be an important reservoir of ES?L producing E. coli.

  20. Self-reported history of Pap-smear in HIV-positive women in Northern Italy: a cross-sectional study

    Ghinelli Florio


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The incidence of invasive cervical cancer in HIV-positive women is higher than in the general population. There is evidence that HIV-positive women do not participate sufficiently in cervical cancer screening in Italy, where cervical cancer is more than 10-fold higher in women with AIDS than in the general population. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the history of Pap-smear in HIV-positive women in Italy in recent years. We also examined the sociodemographic, clinical, and organizational factors associated with adherence to cervical cancer screening. Methods A cross-sectional study was conducted between July 2006 and June 2007 in Emilia-Romagna region (Northern Italy. All HIV-positive women who received a follow-up visit in one of the 10 regional infectivology units were invited to participate. History of Pap-smear, including abnormal smears and subsequent treatment, was investigated through a self-administered anonymous questionnaire. The association between lack of Pap-smear in the year preceding the interview and selected characteristics was assessed by means of odds ratios (OR and 95% confidence intervals adjusted for study centre and age. Results A total of 1,002 HIV-positive women were interviewed. Nine percent reported no history of Pap-smear, and 39% had no Pap-smear in the year prior to the date of questionnaire (last year. The lack of Pap-smear in the last year was significantly associated with age Three hundred five (34% women reported a previous abnormal Pap-smear, and of the 178 (58% referred for treatment, 97% complied. Conclusions In recent years the self-reported history of Pap-smear in HIV-positive women, in some public clinics in Italy, is higher than previously reported, but further efforts are required to make sure cervical cancer screening is accessible to all HIV-positive women.

  1. Regional scale analysis and prediction of shallow landslides induced by rain, occurred in the Emilian Apennines, northern Italy.

    Montrasio, L.; Valentino, R.; Terrone, A.


    Rainfall-induced shallow landslides are widespread over the Italian territory, and they occur after heavy rainfalls or prolonged rainfalls of average intensity. This research study concerns the prediction and analysis at a regional scale of shallow landslides occurred in the Emilian Apennines, northern Italy, between 2007 and 2009. As regards the predisposing factors, the problem of rainwater infiltration and the triggering mechanism this kind of slope instability has been widely described in the past. The physically-based model called SLIP (Shallow Landslide Instability Prediction), which has been recently introduced, has been applied on regional scale. The SLIP model is based on the limit equilibrium method and takes into account even previous rainfall. Analysis of the contribution of rainfalls occurred before the landslide triggering instant show that only the 30 days prior the triggering instant affect the safety factor. On the basis of selected case histories and starting from measured rainfalls, the grid method is used to define rainfall maps. Among the model input GIS data, seasonally constant values of the degree of saturation of the soil are used. For the implementation of the model at a regional scale an overview of the study area is given by the warning areas. Time-varying warning areas' safety factor maps, corresponding to different 12-hour steps prior the triggering instant, are produced. From these maps it is possible to observe how the SLIP model works well with respect to the time variable, forecasting instability at the instant in which landslides really occurred. Using the basic parameters of the ROC (Receiver Operating Characteristic) analysis, sensitivity, specificity and overall accuracy of model results can be calculated and a qualitative assessment of the spatial prediction ability of the model can be obtained. In the majority of the analyzed events, the accuracy of the model results good or sufficient. The main reasons that prevent the model

  2. Asbestos exposure during quarrying and processing of serpentinites: a case study in Valmalenco, Central Alps, Northern Italy

    Cavallo, A.; Rimoldi, B.


    Serpentinites are metamorphic rocks derived from ultramafics such as peridotites (lherzolites and/or harzburgites), with a typical mineralogical assemblage of antigorite, olivine, diopside and minor magnetite, chlorite and chrysotile. If the rock mass has good geotechnical properties, these stones are quarried because of their wide variety of green shades and outstanding technical properties. Excellent stones are produced in the Malenco Valley, Central Alps (northern Italy, Sondrio): here the geological set-up is dominated by the ultramafic Malenco massif (lower crust-mantle complex), exposed at the Penninic to Austroalpine boundary zone. Different processing operations give origin to valuable products like stoves, funeral monuments, design home appliances; important building element as roof slabs, tiles for floor and wall coverings constitute the main commercial line of production. In this area, good quality long fibre chrysotile asbestos was mined since the XIX century, till the seventies. The asbestos fissures (mostly slip-fiber) are well known in Valmalenco, associated to an important ENE-WSW striking fracture and hydrothermal vein system. Some actual serpentinite quarries "cross" at times tunnels of the old asbestos mines, because the fracture and vein system "guides" the extraction. At present time, this area represents an excellent example of naturally occurring asbestos (NOA). For these reasons, workers' exposure to asbestos during quarrying and processing cannot be ruled out, and must be assessed according to national laws. From 2004 to nowadays, the INAIL Regional Management of Lombardia, with the collaboration of University of Milan-Bicocca, carried out extensive monitoring campaigns both in quarries and in processing laboratories. More than 300 massive samples (rocks and veins) and 250 airborne dust samples were collected during the surveys. One of the main problems in the study of massive serpentinites is the accurate identification of the different

  3. Coastal Risk Assessment Framework tool for the identification of hotspots along the Emilia-Romagna coastline (northern Italy)

    Armaroli, Clara; Duo, Enrico; Ciavola, Paolo


    The Emilia-Romagna coastline is located in northern Italy, facing the Adriatic sea. The area is especially exposed to the flooding hazard because of its low lying nature, high urbanisation and the large exploitation of beach resources for tourism. The identification of hotspots where marine flooding can cause significant damages is, therefore, a key issue. The methodology implemented to identify hotspots is based on the Coastal Risk Assessment Framework tool that was developed in the RISC-KIT project ( The tool combines the hazard component with different exposure indicators and is applied along predefined coastal sectors of almost 1 Km alongshore length. The coastline was divided into 106 sectors in which each component was analysed. The hazard part was evaluated through the computation of maximum water levels, obtained as the sum of wave set-up, storm surge and tide, calculated along representative beach profiles, one per sector, and for two return periods (10 and 100 years). The data for the computation of the maximum water level were extracted from the literature. The landward extension of flood-prone areas in each sector was the extension of the flood maps produced by the regional authorities for the EU Flood Directive and for the same return periods. The exposure indicators were evaluated taking into account the location and type of different assets in each sector and in flood-prone areas. Specifically, the assets that were taken into account are: the transport network, the utilities (water, gas and electricity) networks, the land use typologies, the social vulnerability status of the population and the business sector. Each component was then ranked from 1 to 5, considering a scale based on their computed value (hazard), importance and location (exposure indicators). A final coastal index (CI) was computed as the root mean square of the geometrical mean of the exposure indicators multiplied by the hazard indicator. Land use typologies were

  4. Detection, enumeration and characterization of Yersinia enterocolitica 4/O:3 in pig tonsils at slaughter in Northern Italy.

    Bonardi, Silvia; Alpigiani, Irene; Pongolini, Stefano; Morganti, Marina; Tagliabue, Silvia; Bacci, Cristina; Brindani, Franco


    Tonsils from 150 pigs slaughtered at 270 days or older were tested for Yersinia enterocolitica with different cultural methods. Samples were collected in three different abattoirs of Northern Italy between April and November 2012 and were analysed by direct plating on cefsulodin-irgasan-novobiocin (CIN) agar and by enrichment procedures following the ISO 10273:2003 reference method. Twenty-three (15.3%) samples were positive: 22 tonsils (14.7%) were positive for human pathogenic Y. enterocolitica bio-serotype 4/O:3 and one tonsil (0.7%) for Y. enterocolitica bio-serotype 1A/7,8-8,8,19. Seventeen samples out of 23 (73.9%) were positive by direct plating method. Among the enrichment procedures, the best recovery rate (8 positives out of 23; 34.8%) was obtained by the two-day enrichment in peptone-sorbitol-bile (PSB) broth followed by plating on CIN agar plates. The two-day enrichment in PSB followed by potassium hydroxide (KOH) treatment before plating onto CIN agar gave 7 positives out of 23 (30.4%), decreasing to 3 positives (13.0%) without KOH treatment. The worst results were obtained by prolonged (five days) enrichment in PSB, with or without KOH treatment, followed by plating on CIN agar: 4.3% (1 out of 23) and 0.0% recovery rates, respectively. The mean concentration was 1.9 × 10(4)CFU/g, with a minimum of 1.0 × 10(2)CFU/g and a maximum of 5.8 × 10(4)CFU/g, thus demonstrating that tonsils may play an important role in contamination of pluck sets, carcasses, and slaughterhouse environment. Prevalence of virulence genes among the Y. enterocolitica 4/O:3 isolates was as follows: 12/22 (54.5%) for yadA, 21/22 (95.5%) for ail, 21/22 (95.5%) for inv and 22/22 (100%) for ystA. All Y. enterocolitica 4/O:3 isolates were sensitive to amoxicillin/clavulanic acid, ciprofloxacin and ceftazidime and resistant to ampicillin and cephalotin. High proportions of 4/O:3 isolates (95%) were sensitive to cefotaxime, gentamicin, kanamicin and nalidixic acid. High levels of

  5. How to comprehensively evaluate river corridor conditions? A comparison of different biotic and morphological indices in northern Italy

    Golfieri, Bruno; Surian, Nicola; Hardersen, Sönke; Maiolini, Bruno


    The assessment of river conditions is crucial for planning appropriate management actions. The European Water Framework Directive 2000/60/EC (WFD) requires the assessment of biological, physical-chemical and hydromorphological elements to define the ecological status of rivers. The WFD suggests the use of different bioindicators (i.e. benthic macroinvertebrates, diatoms, aquatic macrophytes and fish), the so called "biological quality elements" (BQEs). However, recent studies showed that BQEs-based indices have two main limitations: (i) their standard application is limited to flowing channels and (ii) they are not sensitive to hydromorphological alteration. Hydromorphological conditions are usually evaluated applying methods for physical habitat assessment (i.e. the River Habitat Survey or derived methods) that consist in site-scale inventories of river forms and anthropic structures. The lack of consideration of wider spatial (i.e. reach or catchment scale) and temporal scales (e.g. channel evolution over the last 50-100 years) make such methods inadequate for a sound diagnosis of morphological alterations. The Morphological Quality Index (MQI) and the dragonfly-based Odonate River Index (ORI) were developed in the recent years to overcome the above-mentioned limitations and to assess the condition of the whole river corridor (i.e. the channel and its adjacent floodplain) at reach scale. In this study we correlated the assessments of MQI, ORI and two BQEs-based biotic indices (i.e. STAR_ICMi for benthic macroinvertebrates and ICMi for diatoms) in 15 lowland river reaches in northern Italy. The selected reaches are characterized by a wide range of morphological degradation. MQI and ORI were highly correlated, probably because both methods work at reach scale and consider the integrity of the whole river corridor, either in terms of morphology or considering ecological aspects. In contrast, no significant relationships were found between MQI and ORI and the BQEs

  6. Multi-scale approach for 3D hydrostratigraphic and groundwater flow modelling of Milan (Northern Italy) urban aquifers.

    De Caro, Mattia; Crosta, Giovanni; Frattini, Paolo; Perico, Roberta


    During the last century, urban groundwater was heavily exploited for public and industrial supply. As the water demands of industry have fallen, many cities are now experiencing rising groundwater levels with consequent concerns about localized flooding of basements, reduction of soil bearing capacities under foundations, soil internal erosion and the mobilization of contaminants. The city of Milan (Northern Italy) draws water for domestic and industrial purposes from aquifers beneath the urban area. The rate of abstraction has been varying during the last century, depending upon the number of inhabitants and the development of industrial activities. The groundwater abstraction raised to a maximum of about 350x106 m3/yr in the middle 1970s and has successively decreased to a value of about 230x106 m3/yr at present days. This caused a water table raise at an average rate of about 1 m/yr inducing infiltrations and flooding of deep constructions (e.g. building foundations and basements, underground subway excavations). Starting from a large hydrostratigraphic database (8628 borehole logs), a multi-scale approach for the reconstruction of the aquifers geometry (unconfined and semi-confined) at regional-scale has been used. First, a three-level hierarchical classification of the lithologies (lithofacies, hydrofacies, aquifer groups) has been adopted. Then, the interpretation of several 2D cross-sections was attained with Target for ArcGIS exploration software. The interpretation of cross-sections was based on the characteristics of depositional environments of the analysed aquifers (from meandering plain to proximal outwash deposits), on the position of quaternary deposits, and on the distribution of geochemical parameters (i.e. indicator contaminants and major ions). Finally, the aquifer boundary surfaces were interpolated with standard algorithms. The hydraulic properties of analysed aquifers were estimated through the analyses of available step-drawdown tests (Theis

  7. Archaeometric study of bricks from the ancient defence walls around the town of Pavia in northern Italy

    Veniale, F.


    Full Text Available A study was conducted on bricks sampled from the defense walls around the historic town of Pavia (northern Italy erected during Roman (uncertain and “Spanish”(sixteenth-seventeenth centuries times. An analysis of colour, macro- and micro-chemical composition,mineralogical clusters and structural-textural features showed that similar raw materials were used in the manufacture of these bricks, although certain variations were identified: particle size is finer in Roman bricks, while the “Spanish” version contains ground carbonate and “chamotte” additives. The “Spanish” bricks,fired at lower temperatures, are more porous. The wide range of firing temperatures used to make “Spanish” bricks was very likely related to the intended use. The sporadic presence of maghemite is discussed in the context of the atmosphere prevailing in the kilns. The “Spanish” bricks are lighter in colour as a result of their carbonate content and lower firing temperature. These characteristics, which affect the weather resistance of the different types of brick, should be taken into account in restoration work.Se investigan ladrillos recogidos en las murallas defensivas de la histórica ciudad de Pavía (norte de Italia, que fueron construidas en tiempos romanos (no establecidosy “españoles” (siglos XVI y XVII.En base al color, composición química tanto total como puntual, asociaciones mineralógicas y características texturales,se concluye que se utilizó una materia prima similar en ambas épocas, con algunas particularidades: granulometría más fina en los romanos, adición de carbonato molido y chamota en los “españoles”. Por su parte, la porosidad es mayor en los ladrillos “españoles”. El amplio rango de temperaturas de cocción observado para estos últimos debe estar relacionado con los distintos usos para los cuales fueron destinados. La presencia esporádica de

  8. Late Würm and Early-Middle Holocene Environmental Change and Human Activities in the Northern Apennines, Italy

    Nicholas P. Branch


    Full Text Available An enhanced radiocarbon-dated pollen-stratigraphical record from Rovegno (Liguria, 812m asl, northern Apennines (Italy, has provided a history of vegetation succession from before 17,056-16,621 cal yrs BP to the present day. The record indicates the transition from open Pinus woodland to Artemisia dominated grassland, and fi nally Juniperus shrubland during the late Würm. This is succeeded by Betula and Pinus woodland, and the expansion of thermophilous taxa, namely Abies, Corylus and Quercus during the Late Würm Lateglacial Interstadial. The ‘Younger Dryas’ is possibly represented by an increase in Betula and Artemisia. During the early Holocene, mixed coniferous-deciduous woodland is dominant with Quercus, as well as Abies, Fagus and Corylus. Fagus woodland becomes established sometime before 6488-6318 cal yrs BP, but never becomes a major component of the woodland cover. Throughout the middle Holocene, Abies woodland fl uctuates, with marked declines between 6488-6318 cal yrs BP and 5287-4835 cal yrs BP, although the cause remains uncertain. Finally, the paper evaluates the application of non-pollen palynomorphs, especially coprophilous fungal spores, at Prato Spilla ‘A’ (Emilia Romagna and concludes that greater caution must be used when interpreting middle Holocene human activity based upon pollen data alone. Una migliore risoluzione cronologica basata su date radiocarboniche per una sequenza pollinica da Rovegno (812 m asl, Appennino settentrionale ligure, Italia, ha permesso di ricostruire i cambiamenti vegetazionali per un periodo compreso da prima di 17,056-16,621 anni cal BP ad oggi. La sequenza mostra il passaggio da un bosco a Pinus con struttura aperta ad una prateria dominata da Artemisia, ed infine un arbusteto a Juniperus nel tardo Würm. Successivamente si sviluppa un bosco a Pinus e Betula, e verso la fine dell’ultimo interstadiale würmiano ha luogo l’espansione di taxa termofili quali Abies, Corylus e Quercus

  9. Quantitative risk assessment of verocytotoxin-producing Escherichia coli O157 and Campylobacter jejuni related to consumption of raw milk in a province in Northern Italy.

    Giacometti, F; Serraino, A; Bonilauri, P; Ostanello, F; Daminelli, P; Finazzi, G; Losio, M N; Marchetti, G; Liuzzo, G; Zanoni, R G; Rosmini, R


    A quantitative risk assessment was developed to describe the risk of campylobacteriosis and hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) linked to consumption of raw milk sold in vending machines in Northern Italy. Exposure assessment considered the microbiological status of dairy farms, expected milk contamination, storage conditions from bulk tank to home storage, microbial growth during storage, destruction experiments, consumption frequency of raw milk, age of consumers, serving size, and consumption preference. The differential risk between milk handled under regulation conditions (4°C throughout all phases) and the worst field handling conditions was considered. The probability of Campylobacter jejuni infection was modeled with a single-hit dose-response beta-Poisson model, whereas for HUS an exponential dose-response model was chosen and two probabilities were used to model the higher susceptibility of children younger than 5 years old. For every 10,000 to 20,000 consumers each year, the models predicted for the best and worst storage conditions, respectively, 2.12 and 1.14 campylobacteriosis cases and 0.02 and 0.09 HUS cases in the 0- to 5-year age group and 0.1 and 0.5 HUS cases in the >5-year age group. The expected pediatric HUS cases do not differ considerably from those reported in Italy by the Minister of Health. The model developed may be a useful tool for extending the assessment of the risk of campylobacteriosis and HUS due to raw milk consumption at the national level in Italy. Considering the epidemiological implications of this study, the risk of illness linked to raw milk consumption should not be ignored and could be reduced by the use of simple measures. Boiling milk before consumption and strict control of temperatures by farmers during raw milk distribution have significant effects on campylobacteriosis and HUS and are essential measures for risk management.

  10. Assessment of Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. israelensis Strain AM65-52 aqueous suspension for the control of black fly populations, (Simulium spp. in northern Italy

    P. Radeghieri


    Full Text Available Four field trials were conducted in Mantua province in northern Italy to evaluate the effect of the Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. israelensis Strain AM65-52 based VectoBac® 12 AS larvicide on black flies. Our objective was to examine and compare the efficacy of different concentrations of this microbial larvicide in small plain streams. Larvicidal activity was exhibited in all trials. VectoBac® 12 AS at 2.5 ppm/min rate generated larval mortality from the treatment point to 500 meters downstream. Larvae mortality (over 80% was observed for 3500 meters downstream of the application site when a concentration of 40 ppm/min was applied.

  11. Relationships between statistics of rainfall extremes and mean annual precipitation: an application for design-storm estimation in northern central Italy

    G. Di Baldassarre


    Full Text Available Several hydrological analyses need to be founded on a reliable estimate of the design storm, which is the expected rainfall depth corresponding to a given duration and probability of occurrence, usually expressed in terms of return period. The annual series of precipitation maxima for storm duration ranging from 15 min to 1 day, observed at a dense network of raingauges sited in northern central Italy, are analyzed using an approach based on L-moments. The analysis investigates the statistical properties of rainfall extremes and detects significant relationships between these properties and the mean annual precipitation (MAP. On the basis of these relationships, we developed a regional model for estimating the rainfall depth for a given storm duration and recurrence interval in any location of the study region. The applicability of the regional model was assessed through Monte Carlo simulations. The uncertainty of the model for ungauged sites was quantified through an extensive cross-validation.


    Rosa Francaviglia


    Full Text Available We evaluated the efficiency of the RothC model to simulate Soil Organic Carbon (SOC dynamics after 12 years of organic and mineral fertilization practices in a study area located in northern Italy, on a silty-loam Inceptisol with a rotation including tomato, maize and alfalfa. The model performance was assessed by RMSE and EF coefficients. RothC simulated well observed SOC decreases in 71 samples (RMSE=7.42; EF=0.79, while performed with less accuracy when considering all samples (96 samples; RMSE=12.37; EF=0.58, due to the fact that the model failed in case of measured SOC increases (25 samples; RMSE=20.77; EF=-0.038. The model was used to forecast the SOC dynamics over a 50 year period under the same pedoclimatic conditions. Only clay contents >15% allowed to predict increasing levels of SOC respect to the starting values.

  13. The Shifting Border of Food Perceptions and Cultural Identity in Maghrebi Muslim Migrants. History and the Contemporary Experience of Cultural Mediators in Northern Italy

    Roberta Rosa Giovine


    Full Text Available In recent decades, Italy has become a point of entry to the EU and, for many migrants from the Southern shores of the Mediterranean, a final destination (IOM Report, 2011. As massive inflows have often caused emergencies, the pressing needs of these populations in the areas of housing, healthcare, education, etc. have been examined and addressed (data: Regional Authority and Milan Diocese Observatories. Realizing that the cultural implications in the area of food, had not been systematically studied thus far, the author developed a three-year project, focusing on northwest African Muslim migrants and the change in their perception of food, particularly in light of the strong religious implications that food has historically had to Arab populations. After reviewing the key traits of Arab-Berber food history, their translation into contemporary life in the countries of origin and destination was investigated, through interviews with, primarily, cultural mediators, as well as anthropologists, food experts, food chain professionals, and the migrants themselves. The overall research delves into the migrants’ views of food back in Northern Africa and Maghrebi3 and other food in Italy, with an emphasis on ideas of purity and identity (in culinary practices, ingredients, celebrations, table manners, the restaurant system and distribution.

  14. Local Hotspots of Endemism or Artifacts of Incorrect Taxonomy? The Status of Microendemic Pill Millipede Species of the Genus Glomeris in Northern Italy (Diplopoda, Glomerida)

    Wesener, Thomas; Conrad, Cathrin


    Local endemic species with their unique evolutionary history always stirred the interest of scientists. One such area especially rich in endemics is northern Italy. In case of pill millipedes of the genus Glomeris Latreille, 1803, only a single species is found in northern Europe, while 22 country-endemics alone are known from Italy. Many of these endemics, however, have not been studied in several decades; therefore we aimed to determine whether this diversity is the result of overlooked synonymies or natural processes. A focus was placed on the local endemics that are in some aspects morphologically similar to the widespread and variable G. klugii Brandt, 1833. The local endemics Glomeris larii Verhoeff, 1921, G. primordialis Verhoeff, 1930, G. oblongoguttata Verhoeff, 1894, G. oropensis Verhoeff, 1936, G. transalpina Koch, 1836, G. romana Verhoeff, 1900, G. ligurica Latzel, 1884 and G. apuana Verhoeff, 1911 were included in a molecular analysis incorporating ribosomal nuclear (28S) and mitochondrial (COI) genes. Individuals were sequenced and compared to 31 specimens from 18 localities of G. klugii. The final dataset included 657 base pairs for 56 terminals in the COI, and 14 terminals with 1068 base pairs in the combined 28S and COI analysis. Our analysis shows intraspecific distances of up to 5% in the COI gene in G. klugii that are not strictly correlated to geography or color pattern. G. larii is discovered to be genetically and morphologically identical to G. klugii and is synonymised with the latter. Interspecific distances in our dataset vary between 6.7 to 15.9%, with the lowest (6.7–9.0%) between G. primordialis and G. klugii. Our analysis confirms the species status of the local endemics G. primordialis, G. oblongoguttata, G. oropensis, G. transalpina, G. ligurica and G. apuana. We also confirm the synonymy of G. undulata Koch, 1844 under G. klugii. G. genuensis Latzel, 1886 is indistinguishable from G. ligurica. PMID:27632210

  15. Analysis of shallow failures triggered by the 14-16 November 2002 event in the Albaredo valley, Valtellina (Northern Italy)

    Dapporto, S.; Aleotti, P.; Casagli, N.; G. Polloni


    On 14-16 November 2002 the North Italy was affected by an intense rainfall event: in the Albaredo valley (Valtellina) more than 200 mm of rain fell triggering about 50 shallow landslides, mainly soil slips and soil slip-debris flows. Landslides occurred above the critical rainfall thresholds computed by Cancelli and Nova (1985) and Ceriani et al. (1994) for the Italian Central Alps: in fact the cumulative precipitation at the soil slips initiation time was 230 mm (in two days) with a pe...

  16. Rediscovering the Eurasian Otter (Lutra Lutra L. in Friuli Venezia Giulia and Notes on its Possible Expansion in Northern Italy

    Marco Pavanello


    Full Text Available In Italy otters occur in two small populations in the South, while in the Alps they have been extinct for about 50 years. In Austria, the species is recovering and re-colonizing the Southern part of the country. The first record of the species in the Italian Alps goes back to 2008, when otters were found in the most upper catchment of the River Drau in the Region Trentino Alto Adige – South Tyrol. In the Region Friuli Venezia Giulia (NE Italy, in 2011 and 2012 two otters were found road killed within the catchment of the River Tagliamento. These findings prompted an otter survey, carried out in spring 2014 along the catchment of the upper Tagliamento and the Italian side of the River Slizza-Gailitz, which drains the area of Tarvisio and joins the River Drau in Austria, near Villach. The survey covered an area of 3200 km2. A total of 138 bridges and 16 stretches of 600 m were checked along the river banks for otter signs, i.e. spraints and tracks. Otter signs were found at 27 of the investigated sites, in the area of Tarvisio along the River Slizza-Gailitz (Drau catchment, but not in the catchment of the Tagliamento. Like for individuals found in Alto Adige – South Tyrol otters living in the area of Tarvisio belong to the River Drau population in Austria.

  17. Development of a risk based remedial strategy for an MGP site in northern Italy - a case study

    Pozzi, R.; Battaglia, A.; Goldstein, R.; Wilson, D. [AEM, Milan (Italy)


    The `Officina del Gas della Bovisa`, or Bovisa MGP, started operations in 1908, to generate gas for distribution to the city of Milan, Italy. From its inception to 1969, gas was manufactured at the Bovisa site by distillation of coal. By 1969, the coal distillation plant was decommissioned and totally replaced with a plant for the production of gas via the reforming of light petroleum hydrocarbons and mixing of air with methane. In 1981, the Bovisa MGP and the Milan distribution network were taken over by Azienda Energetica Municipale (AEM), Milan, which started the process of changing over gas service to methane. This `methanization` project was completed in 1994, at which time all gas production equipment at the Bovisa site was decommissioned. A site remediation feasibility study was carried out, first involving a site investigation through soil sampling, then a risk assessment and feasibility study.




    Full Text Available The present paper is the second in a series devoted to the revision of the Pliocene naticids of Northern and Central Italy. It concludes the section covering the calcareous operculum-bearing Naticinae and expands to 18 the total number of species and subspecies of this subfamily recovered so far from the Pliocene deposits of Italy. Of the six taxa considered in this study, two (epigloafuniculata and fredianii fully match the characters of the genus Cochlis Röding, 1798, one (koeneni is assigned to the genus Tanea Marwick, 1931, the rest (astensis, prietoi and tectula belong to the genus Tectonatica Sacco, 1890. All the six taxa considered in this paper are described and commented in the systematic account. One, Cochlis fredianii, is proposed as new. In the chapter treating the generic assignment of the studied taxa, the range of Tanea, hitherto used to allocate several Indo-Pacific species, is extended to the Mediterranean Basin as well, and the relations between Tectonatica and Cryptonatica Dall, 1892 are discussed. This study further demonstrates that the morphological characters of the teleoconch are of low significance in species recognition. In fact, should the characters be ranked, the operculum comes first and is the primary element, sufficient to distinguish each species. The protoconch and the color pattern are the second and third relevant attributes that can be used diagnostically for several taxa, but not always. The other shell features appear to be useful tools in separating species only occasionally. Some species lack distinctive shell characters and do require operculate specimens in order to be confidently 

  19. Angiostrongylus vasorum in red foxes (Vulpes vulpes and badgers (Meles meles from Central and Northern Italy

    Marta Magi


    Full Text Available Abstract During 2004-2005 and 2007-2008, 189 foxes (Vulpes vulpes and 6 badgers (Meles meles were collected in different areas of Central Northern Italy (Piedmont, Liguria and Tuscany and examined for Angiostrongylus vasorum infection. The prevalence of the infection was significantly different in the areas considered, with the highest values in the district of Imperia (80%, Liguria and in Montezemolo (70%, southern Piedmont; the prevalence in Tuscany was 7%. One badger collected in the area of Imperia turned out to be infected, representing the first report of the parasite in this species in Italy. Further studies are needed to evaluate the role played by fox populations as reservoirs of infection and the probability of its spreading to domestic dogs.
    Riassunto Angiostrongylus vasorum nella volpe (Vulpes vulpes e nel tasso (Meles meles in Italia centro-settentrionale. Nel 2004-2005 e 2007-2008, 189 volpi (Vulpes vulpes e 6 tassi (Meles meles provenienti da differenti aree dell'Italia settentrionale e centrale (Piemonte, Liguria Toscana, sono stati esaminati per la ricerca di Angiostrongylus vasorum. La prevalenza del nematode è risultata significativamente diversa nelle varie zone, con valori elevati nelle zone di Imperia (80% e di Montezemolo (70%, provincia di Cuneo; la prevalenza in Toscana è risultata del 7%. Un tasso proveniente dall'area di Imperia è risultato positivo per A. vasorum; questa è la prima segnalazione del parassita in tale specie in Italia. Ulteriori studi sono necessari per valutare il potenziale della volpe come serbatoio e la possibilità di diffusione della parassitosi ai cani domestici.


  20. Rabies and canine distemper virus epidemics in the red fox population of northern Italy (2006-2010.

    Pierre Nouvellet

    Full Text Available Since 2006 the red fox (Vulpes vulpes population in north-eastern Italy has experienced an epidemic of canine distemper virus (CDV. Additionally, in 2008, after a thirteen-year absence from Italy, fox rabies was re-introduced in the Udine province at the national border with Slovenia. Disease intervention strategies are being developed and implemented to control rabies in this area and minimise risk to human health. Here we present empirical data and the epidemiological picture relating to these epidemics in the period 2006-2010. Of important significance for epidemiological studies of wild animals, basic mathematical models are developed to exploit information collected from the surveillance program on dead and/or living animals in order to assess the incidence of infection. These models are also used to estimate the rate of transmission of both diseases and the rate of vaccination, while correcting for a bias in early collection of CDV samples. We found that the rate of rabies transmission was roughly twice that of CDV, with an estimated effective contact between infected and susceptible fox leading to a new infection occurring once every 3 days for rabies, and once a week for CDV. We also inferred that during the early stage of the CDV epidemic, a bias in the monitoring protocol resulted in a positive sample being almost 10 times more likely to be collected than a negative sample. We estimated the rate of intake of oral vaccine at 0.006 per day, allowing us to estimate that roughly 68% of the foxes would be immunised. This was confirmed by field observations. Finally we discuss the implications for the eco-epidemiological dynamics of both epidemics in relation to control measures.

  1. On the spatial spread of the Rice Water Weevil, Lissorhoptrus oryzophilus Kuschel (Coleoptera: Erirhinidae, in Italy

    Daniela Lupi


    Full Text Available A five year study has been made to establish the spread of the rice water weevil Lissorhoptrus oryzophilus (Coleoptera: Erirhinidae in Northern Italy. Data obtained with GPS from 2005 throughout 2009 were first georeferenced with SW ArcGis® 9.2, then overlapped and compared to the map of the European environmental landscape based on the interpretation of satellite images (CORINE Land Cover map and to the hydrographic chart CT10 (Technical Regional map 10000. The analysis of the radial rate of spread per year indicates a deceleration in the expansion from 10.864 ± 6.801 km/year in 2005 to 5.318 ± 1.401 km/year in 2009. In five years the weevil has expanded its distribution in nearly all rice paddies in Lombardy and Piedmont, over an area of about 200,000 ha, which correspond to 86% of the total Italian rice area. Its expansion is thought to follow a type of stratified dispersal, due both to insect adult active dispersal and to accidental movements caused by human transportation.

  2. Distribution of native and exotic branchiobdellidans (Annelida: Clitellata on their respective crayfish hosts in northern Italy, with the first record of native Branchiobdella species on an exotic North American crayfish.

    Joy N. RAYBURN


    Full Text Available Branchiobdellidans were found on crayfish at the 18 sites examined in northern Italy. At 15 of the sites the native crayfish, Austropotamobius pallipes, was collected and all supported specimens of Branchiobdella italica. A few specimens of B. parasita were found at only two of these sites and no specimens of B. hexodonta were observed during the survey. The North American Louisiana red swamp crayfish, Procambarus (Scapulicambarus clarkii has been found in three additional sites around Carmagnola, south of Torino. The exotic Cambarincola mesochoreus was recovered from red crayfish at two sites. However, no specimens of C. mesochoreus were found at the third site, but specimens B. italica and B. parasita were identified. This is the first record of native Branchiobdella spp. on an exotic and wild crayfish in northern Italy.

  3. Age-associated alterations in cholesterol homeostasis: evidence from a cross-sectional study in a Northern Italy population

    Bertolotti M


    Full Text Available Marco Bertolotti,1 Chiara Mussi,1 Elisa Pellegrini,1 Alessandro Magni,2 Marina Del Puppo,2 Silvia Ognibene,1 Lucia Carulli,1 Claudia Anzivino,1 Enrica Baldelli,1 Paola Loria,1 Nicola Carulli1 1Department of Biomedical, Metabolic and Neural Sciences, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Modena, Italy; 2Department of Health Sciences, University of Milano Bicocca, Monza, Italy Background: The modifications of cholesterol metabolism associated with aging are ill-defined. The objective of this study was to define age-associated alterations of the different metabolic pathways controlling cholesterol homeostasis by analyzing circulating sterols. Methods: We analyzed serum samples collected from 201 adult (75 male, 126 female subjects within the epidemiological MICOL study (Multicentrica Italiana Colelitiasi. The age range was 38–79 years; 103 had evidence of gallstones. The concentrations of the different sterols, recognized as markers of the main pathways of cholesterol homeostasis, were analyzed by gas chromatography–mass spectrometry, including lathosterol (synthesis, campesterol and sitosterol (absorption, and 7α-hydroxy-4-cholesten-3-one (degradation to bile acids. Results: A significant direct correlation was detected between age and cholesterol levels (r=0.34, P<0.01. The lathosterol/cholesterol ratio was lower in older age quartiles (P<0.05 by analysis of variance, with an inverse correlation between the lathosterol/cholesterol ratio and age (r=−0.32, P<0.01. Such correlation was particularly evident in females. The campesterol/cholesterol and sitosterol/cholesterol ratios were inversely correlated with aging in control, but not in gallstone patients. The levels of 7α-hydroxy-4-cholesten-3-one were not correlated with age. Conclusion: These data show a reduction of cholesterol synthesis with aging which is associated with increased circulating cholesterol levels. The finding might be related to a reduced metabolic need for

  4. Serological detection of circulating Angiostrongylus vasorum antigen and specific antibodies in dogs from central and northern Italy.

    Guardone, L; Schnyder, M; Macchioni, F; Deplazes, P; Magi, M


    The most frequently employed method for the diagnosis of Angiostrongylus vasorum in dogs is the detection of first stage larvae (L1) in faeces. The sensitivity of coproscopy, however, is limited in case of low parasite load, intermittent larval excretion, and during pre-patency. An epidemiological survey on dogs was conducted applying serological methods in two Italian regions where angiostrongylosis is endemic in foxes. 265 dog serum samples from Tuscany (central Italy - site A) and 447 from Liguria (north-western Italy - site B) were tested with a sandwich-ELISA for detection of circulating antigen, and with an ELISA using A. vasorum adult somatic antigen purified by monoclonal antibodies for specific antibody detection. During previous examinations dogs naturally infected with Leishmania infantum (n=149), Dirofilaria immitis (n=40), Dirofilaria repens (n=30), Acanthocheilonema reconditum (n=27), Crenosoma vulpis (n=1), A. vasorum (n=2), Capillaria aerophila (n=35), Capillaria boehmi (n=3), Toxocara canis (n=68), Toxascaris leonina (n=5), hookworms (n=37) and Trichuris vulpis (n=39) were detected. Sera of these dogs were used to evaluate cross reactions. In site A, 2 dogs (0.8%) were seropositive for antibody and antigen detection and 4 (1.5%) for antibody detection only. From site B, 4 dogs (0.9%) were seropositive for both tests, while other 4 dogs (0.9%) for antigen detection only and 9 dogs (2%) for antibody detection only. Considering a subgroup of 347 dogs from site B which had also been tested with the Baermann technique, 2 (0.6%) were positive for both tests, 4 (1.2%) for antigen detection only and 9 (2.6%) for antibody detection only. The two dogs which were positive for both serological tests were also positive for A. vasorum L1 in the faeces. No significant difference in seropositivities was observed in the group of dogs with other proven parasitic infections. A. vasorum serology presents significant advantages (diagnosis before patency, single serum

  5. Long-term trends in first arrival and first egg laying dates of some migrant and resident bird species in northern Italy

    Rubolini, Diego; Ambrosini, Roberto; Caffi, Mario; Brichetti, Pierandrea; Armiraglio, Stefano; Saino, Nicola


    Climate change is affecting the phenology of seasonal events in Europe and the Northern Hemisphere, as shown by several studies of birds’ timing of migration and reproduction. Here, we analyse the long-term (1982-2006) trends of first arrival dates of four long-distance migratory birds [swift ( Apus apus), nightingale ( Luscinia megarhynchos), barn swallow ( Hirundo rustica), and house martin ( Delichon urbicum)] and first egg laying dates of two migrant (swift, barn swallow) and two resident species [starling ( Sturnus vulgaris), Italian sparrow ( Passer italiae)] at a study site in northern Italy. We also addressed the effects of local weather (temperature and precipitation) and a climate index (the North Atlantic Oscillation, NAO) on the interannual variability of phenological events. We found that the swift and the barn swallow significantly advanced both arrival and laying dates, whereas all other species did not show any significant temporal trend in either arrival or laying date. The earlier arrival of swifts was explained by increasing local temperatures in April, whereas this was not the case for arrival dates of swallows and first egg laying dates of both species. In addition, arrival dates of house martins were earlier following high NAO winters, while nightingale arrival was earlier when local spring rainfall was greater. Finally, Italian sparrow onset of reproduction was anticipated by greater spring rainfall, but delayed by high spring NAO anomalies, and swift’s onset of reproduction was anticipated by abundant rainfall prior to reproduction. There were no significant temporal trends in the interval between onset of laying and arrival in either the swift or the barn swallow. Our findings therefore indicate that birds may show idiosyncratic responses to climate variability at different spatial scales, though some species may be adjusting their calendar to rapidly changing climatic conditions.

  6. GPS observations of coseismic deformation following the May 20 and 29, 2012, Emilia seismic events (northern Italy: data, analysis and preliminary models

    Enrico Serpelloni


    Full Text Available In May-July 2012, a seismic sequence struck a broad area of the Po Plain Region in northern Italy. The sequence included two Ml >5.5 mainshocks. The first one (Ml 5.9 occurred near the city of Finale Emilia (ca. 30 km west of Ferrara on May 20 at 02:03:53 (UTC, and the second (Ml 5.8 occurred on May 29 at 7:00:03 (UTC, about 12 km southwest of the May 20 mainshock (Figure 1, near the city of Mirandola. The seismic sequence involved an area that extended in an E-W direction for more than 50 km, and included seven Ml ≥5.0 events and more than 2,300 Ml >1.5 events ( The focal mechanisms of the main events [Pondrelli et al. 2012, Scognamiglio et al. 2012, this volume] consistently showed compressional kinematics with E-W oriented reverse nodal planes. This sector of the Po Plain is known as a region characterized by slow deformation rates due to the northwards motion of the northern Apennines fold-and-thrust belt, which is buried beneath the sedimentary cover of the Po Plain [Picotti and Pazzaglia 2008, Toscani et al. 2009]. Early global positioning system (GPS measurements [Serpelloni et al. 2006] and the most recent updates [Devoti et al. 2011, Bennett et al. 2012] recognized that less than 2 mm/yr of SW-NE shortening are accommodated across this sector of the Po Plain, in agreement with other present-day stress indicators [Montone et al. 2012] and known active faults [Basili et al. 2008]. In the present study, we describe the GPS data used to study the coseismic deformation related to the May 20 and 29 mainshocks, and provide preliminary models of the two seismic sources, as inverted from consensus GPS coseismic deformation fields. […

  7. Daytime habitat selection by introduced eastern cottontail Sylvilagus floridanus and native european hare Lepus europaeus in Northern Italy.

    Bertolino, Sandro; Montezemolo, Nicola Cordero di; Perrone, Aurelio


    We used radiotelemetry to investigate resting sites habitat selection by introduced eastern cottontail (Sylvilagus floridanus) and native European hare (Lepus europaeus) under sympatric conditions. We tracked 24 hares and 34 cottontails in a protected area of northwestern Italy. Hares were found in different sites every week, while cottontails used the same site for two weeks, and occasionally for longer. It is supposed that this periodic nest switching reduces the risk of predation and parasitism. Hares and cottontails forms were located in different habitats and characterized by dense vegetation cover near the ground. This cover increased from winter to summer in both species, while in autumn it continued to increase in cottontails only, and decreased in hares. Cottontails selected shrubby habitats near the river, and avoided crop fields in all seasons. Hares were more adaptive in their search, using high herbs and shrubs all year round, wheat fields in spring, maize in spring and summer, and stubbles in winter. Arguably, partial niche differentiation is necessary to allow the coexistence of similar species. In our study area, hares and cottontails differentiated in the use of resting sites habitats, presumably so as not to compete in this part of their ecological niche.

  8. Fourteen years of palaeolimnological research of a past industrial polluted lake (L. Orta, Northern Italy: an overview

    Francesca ALVISI


    Full Text Available The first sediment core analyses were carried out in 1958, but it is only from 1985 onward that a modern palaeolimnological approach was applied to the study of Lake Orta, a large and deep lake in North Italy, heavily polluted by ammonia and copper for about 50 and 30 years, respectively. Thus, we summarise those studies from a variety of sediment cores, collected in different years and sites, using both published and unpublished data. Changes in algal pigments (mainly chlorophyll derivatives, total and single carotenoids, inorganic geochemistry, especially heavy metals (e.g. Cu, diatoms, Cladocera, and thecamoebians were studied and related to the stressed environment. The whole picture reveals a close relationship between modifications in algal biomass, density, taxonomic composition and organisms size on the one hand, and water chemistry changes on the other hand. Long-term history of this lake over 7-8 centuries, including invertebrate and terrestrial vegetation dynamics (pollen stratigraphy, reveals close relationship with natural (climate and anthropogenic forces.

  9. Analysis of shallow failures triggered by the 14-16 November 2002 event in the Albaredo valley, Valtellina (Northern Italy

    S. Dapporto


    Full Text Available On 14-16 November 2002 the North Italy was affected by an intense rainfall event: in the Albaredo valley (Valtellina more than 200 mm of rain fell triggering about 50 shallow landslides, mainly soil slips and soil slip-debris flows. Landslides occurred above the critical rainfall thresholds computed by Cancelli and Nova (1985 and Ceriani et al. (1994 for the Italian Central Alps: in fact the cumulative precipitation at the soil slips initiation time was 230 mm (in two days with a peak intensity of 15 mm/h. A coupled analysis of seepage and instability mechanisms is performed in order to evaluate the potential for slope failure during the event. Changes in positive and negative pore water pressures during the event are modelled by a finite element analysis of water flow in transient conditions, using as boundary condition for the nodes along the slope surface the recorded rainfall rate. The slope stability analysis is conducted applying the limit equilibrium method, using pore water pressure distributions obtained in the different time steps by the seepage analysis as input data for the calculation of the factor of safety.

  10. Burden of rotavirus disease and cost-effectiveness of universal vaccination in the Province of Genoa (Northern Italy).

    Panatto, D; Amicizia, D; Ansaldi, F; Marocco, A; Marchetti, F; Bamfi, F; Giacchino, R; Tacchella, A; Del Buono, S; Gasparini, R


    Rotavirus is acknowledged to be a major cause of acute gastroenteritis in infants and young children. As gastroenteritis due to rotavirus is a public health problem and two new vaccines are currently available, we investigated the rotavirus burden and developed a cost-effectiveness analysis, using data collected in the Province of Genoa (Italy), to evaluate the benefits of new borns vaccination. The cost-effectiveness of a rotavirus vaccination programme in the Province of Genoa was performed, in comparison with no vaccination, for both the regional healthcare system (RHS) and society (S). In 2006, admissions to the paediatric emergency department for gastroenteritis numbered 2338 (about 11% of total admissions); of these 33% were hospitalised. In 28% of cases, the children tested positive for rotavirus. During epidemics, paediatricians receive from 3 to 5 calls per day for gastroenteritis, carry out 1 or 2 ambulatory examinations and for children with a severe case history, make house visits. A rotavirus immunisation programme would have a great impact on disease burden, in that 90% coverage would reduce the number of severe cases by more than 85%. From the perspective of both the RHS and S, vaccination proved to be highly cost-effective.

  11. Analysis of shallow failures triggered by the 14-16 November 2002 event in the Albaredo valley, Valtellina (Northern Italy)

    Dapporto, S.; Aleotti, P.; Casagli, N.; Polloni, G.


    On 14-16 November 2002 the North Italy was affected by an intense rainfall event: in the Albaredo valley (Valtellina) more than 200 mm of rain fell triggering about 50 shallow landslides, mainly soil slips and soil slip-debris flows. Landslides occurred above the critical rainfall thresholds computed by Cancelli and Nova (1985) and Ceriani et al. (1994) for the Italian Central Alps: in fact the cumulative precipitation at the soil slips initiation time was 230 mm (in two days) with a peak intensity of 15 mm/h. A coupled analysis of seepage and instability mechanisms is performed in order to evaluate the potential for slope failure during the event. Changes in positive and negative pore water pressures during the event are modelled by a finite element analysis of water flow in transient conditions, using as boundary condition for the nodes along the slope surface the recorded rainfall rate. The slope stability analysis is conducted applying the limit equilibrium method, using pore water pressure distributions obtained in the different time steps by the seepage analysis as input data for the calculation of the factor of safety.

  12. Facilities for Territorial Medicine: the experiences of Piedmont and Lombardy Regions

    Stefano Capolongo


    Full Text Available In recent years, the demographic transition and epidemiological has made the health system hospital-centric obsolete and has highlighted the need for a new organization focused on territorial health community, taking charge of the patient, on team work and can ensure, through dedicated facilities, continuity of care and integration of social welfare.The main changes in the regulatory field have thus oriented investments both structural and economic towards poles to network with hospitals that represent new points of reference for the health of citizens, where primary care services are integrated with the territory and the specialized services of the Public Health departments.These facilities provide the organizational paradigm to which the regional realities must strive.The article reports recent experiments conducted within the regions of Piedmont and Lombardy in this sector and the ongoing research in the field of CNETO on behalf of the Lombardy Region.

  13. Polychlorinated biphenyls, glycaemia and diabetes in a population living in a highly polychlorinated biphenyls-polluted area in northern Italy: a cross-sectional and cohort study

    Claudia Zani


    Full Text Available Background. Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs have been found to be associated with diabetes in some, but not all, studies performed so far. The aim of this study was to assess the association between PCB serum levels and glycaemia and diabetes in people living in Brescia, a highly industrialised PCB-polluted town in Northern Italy. Design and Methods. 527 subjects were enrolled in a cross-sectional population-based study: they were interviewed face-to-face in 2003 and also provided a blood sample under fasting conditions. The concentration of 24 PCB congeners was determined using gas-chromatography (GC/MS. Subsequently, all subjects were included in a follow-up (cohort study. According to the Local Health Authority health-care database, subjects were considered to be diabetic if they had diabetes at interview time (prevalent cases or during a 7-year follow-up (incident cases. Results. A total of 53 subjects (10.0% were diabetics: 28 had dia- betes at enrolment and other 25 developed the disease subsequently. Diabetes frequency increased according to the serum concentrations of total PCBs and single PCB congeners, but no association was found when estimates were adjusted for education, body mass index, age and gender by logistic regression analysis. Accordingly, glycaemia increased with PCB serum levels, but no association was observed when multiple regression analysis, including confounding factors, was performed. Conclusions. This study does not support the hypothesis that PCB environmental exposure is strictly associated with diabetes or glycaemia.

  14. Intestinal parasites of owned dogs and cats from metropolitan and micropolitan areas: prevalence, zoonotic risks, and pet owner awareness in northern Italy.

    Zanzani, Sergio Aurelio; Gazzonis, Alessia Libera; Scarpa, Paola; Berrilli, Federica; Manfredi, Maria Teresa


    Intestinal parasites of dogs and cats are cosmopolitan pathogens with zoonotic potential for humans. Our investigation considered their diffusion in dogs and cats from northern Italy areas, specifically the metropolitan area of Milan and two micropolitan areas of neighboring provinces. It included the study of the level of awareness in pet owners of the zoonotic potential from these parasites. A total of 409 fresh fecal samples were collected from household dogs and cats for copromicroscopic analysis and detection of Giardia duodenalis coproantigens. The assemblages of Giardia were also identified. A questionnaire about intestinal parasites biology and zoonotic potential was submitted to 185 pet owners. The overall prevalence of intestinal parasites resulted higher in cats (47.37%-60.42%) and dogs (57.41%-43.02%) from micropolitan areas than that from the metropolis of Milan (dogs: P = 28.16%; cats: P = 32.58 %). The zoonotic parasites infecting pets under investigation were T. canis and T. cati, T. vulpis, Ancylostomatidae, and G. duodenalis assemblage A. Only 49.19% of pet owners showed to be aware of the risks for human health from canine and feline intestinal parasites. Parasitological results in pets and awareness determination in their owners clearly highlight how the role of veterinarians is important in indicating correct and widespread behaviors to reduce risks of infection for pets and humans in urban areas.

  15. Searching for the effects of the May-June 2012 Emilia seismic sequence (northern Italy: medium-depth deformation structures at the periphery of the epicentral area

    Lisa Borgatti


    Full Text Available In 2012, a seismic sequence occurred in the lowlands of the Emilia-Romagna Region (northern Italy, between the borders of the Modena, Ferrara and Bologna Provinces. It consisted of seven mainshocks (5.9 > Ml > 5 that were recorded between May 20 and 29, 2012 [INGV 2012a] and 2,200 minor earthquakes [INGV 2012b]. An interferometric analysis [Bignami et al. 2012, Salvi et al. 2012, this volume] highlighted three main deformation areas, each of which was 12 km wide (from S to N and 10 km to 20 km long in an ESE-WNW to E-W direction, thus affecting an area of about 600 km2 (Figure 1. Field and aerial geological surveys recorded numerous surficial effects, such as: (i sediment liquefaction [Crespellani et al. 2012]; (ii localized ground fissures resembling surficial faulting [Fioravante and Giretti 2012] (Figure 2; (iii groundwater levels rising up to 400 cm above the local ground level in phreatic wells during the mainshocks (lower values were observed in confined aquifers; and (iv dormancy of previously known sinkholes [Borgatti et al. 2010, Cremonini 2010a, and references therein]. Some of the observed surface phenomena were previously recorded as coseismic effects during the earthquakes of Ferrara (1570 and Argenta (1624 [Boschi et al. 1995, Galli 2000], together with the early rising of the water level of the Po River in the Stellata section. […

  16. Life span history of non-fatal suicidal behaviours in a large sample of general practitioners' patients: data from Rovigo, Northern Italy.

    Zanone Poma, S; Vicentini, S; Siviero, F; Grossi, A; Toniolo, E; Cocchio, S; Baldo, V; De Leo, Diego


    A survey about history of non-fatal suicidal behaviour was performed on 1,171 subjects in the waiting room of general practitioners' practices in the territory of Rovigo (Northern Italy). The mean age of interviewed subjects was 52.9 ± 17.0, with a majority of female individuals. Two and two percent admitted previous experience of non-suicidal self-injury, 4.7 % admitted having had serious suicidal thoughts/plans, and 1.8 % reported at least one suicide attempt. Compared to the rest of the sample, people with history of suicidal behaviours resulted to be of younger age (p < .05), whilst their level of well-being was poorer (p < .001). When compared to the results of the Italian arm of the European Study of the Epidemiology of Mental Disorders, carried out on general population samples, the present study produces higher rates of suicidality, despite the much higher mean age of the interviewed subjects compared to the general population.

  17. Contrasting alluvial architecture of Late Pleistocene and Holocene deposits along a 120-km transect from the central Po Plain (northern Italy)

    Campo, Bruno; Amorosi, Alessandro; Bruno, Luigi


    High-resolution investigation of a ~ 120-km-long transect along the course of the modern Po River, northern Italy, revealed marked changes in alluvial architecture across the Pleistocene-Holocene boundary. Along the whole transect, a 20- to 30-m thick sheet-like succession of Late Pleistocene fluvial sands is invariably overlain by silt and clay deposits, with isolated fluvial bodies of Holocene age (architecture: well-drained floodplain deposits are transitional at distal locations to increasingly organic, poorly drained floodplain to swamp facies associations. Thick paludal facies extend continuously up to 60 km landward of the Holocene maximum marine ingression, about 90 km from the modern shoreline. Based on 28 radiocarbon dates, the abrupt change in lithofacies and channel stacking pattern occurred at the transition from the last glacial period to the present interglacial, under conditions of rapid sea-level rise. The architectural change from amalgamated, Late Pleistocene sand bodies to overlying, mud-dominated Holocene units represent an example of chronologically well-constrained fluvial response to combined climate and relative sea-level change. The overall aggradational stacking pattern of individual channel-belt sand bodies indicates that high subsidence rates continuously created accommodation in the Po Basin, even during phases of falling sea level and lowstand.

  18. Cost-benefit analysis of controlling the spotted wing drosophila (Drosophila suzukii (Matsumura)) spread and infestation of soft fruits in Trentino, Northern Italy.

    Del Fava, Emanuele; Ioriatti, Claudio; Melegaro, Alessia


    We assessed the economic impact of the invasive pest Drosophila suzukii (Matsumura) on the soft fruit industry (strawberries, raspberries, blackberries and blueberries) in Trentino, Northern Italy, using cost-benefit analysis. A conventional integrated pest management (IPM) based on insecticide, mass trapping and cultural measures is compared with an upgraded IPM strategy based on exclusion netting. Costs and benefits associated with the change between the two are estimated to evaluate the most profitable strategy from a societal point of view. The robustness of the results to uncertainty in parameter values is assessed through probabilistic sensitivity analysis. In a period of low pest pressure, the conventional IPM strategy would likely be more profitable than no management. However, with higher pest pressure levels, the upgraded IPM strategy would increasingly be more profitable than conventional IPM as pest damage levels increase. For the problem considered in this study, insecticide-based management is expected to prove less and less profitable as rising pest pressure levels lead to an intensification of the insecticide applications. Conversely, exclusion netting, despite being more expensive, is expected to be much more profitable, in terms of both its effectiveness in reducing pest pressure and its lower societal impact. © 2017 Society of Chemical Industry. © 2017 Society of Chemical Industry.

  19. A survey on the occurrence of ochratoxin A in feeds and sera collected in conventional and organic poultry farms in Northern Italy

    Laura Cavallarin


    Full Text Available A survey has been conducted on conventional and organic poultry farms located in northern Italy in order to investigate the occurrence of ochratoxin A (OTA in feeds and sera in 2006. Ten poultry farms were monitored by taking 20 samples of feed and 94 samples of blood. OTA was assessed through immunoaffinity column purification and HPLC analysis. For in-house validation, recovery experiments, carried out on the spiked samples in the range of 1.0-10.0 μg OTA kg-1 and 0.3-3.0 ng OTA ml-1 for the feed and serum samples, respectively, led to overall recovery averages of 80.6% (RDS=7.3%, n=9 and 83.3% (RDS=3.1%, n=9, respectively. All the feed samples were contaminated by OTA with values ranging from 0.04 to 6.50 μg kg-1. Fiftythree percent of the sera samples were positive, with values ranging from 0.003- 0.165 ng ml-1. None of the feed samples was above the limits set by the European Union on OTA contamination in poultry feeds. No statistically significant differences in OTA contamination of feed or sera were observed either between the organic vs conventional group or between the laying hens vs broiler group.

  20. A life cycle assessment of non-renewable energy use and greenhouse gas emissions associated with blueberry and raspberry production in northern Italy.

    Girgenti, Vincenzo; Peano, Cristiana; Bounous, Michele; Baudino, Claudio


    This study examined the emissions produced during the pre-farm, farm and post-farm phases of the production cycle of raspberries and giant American whortleberries (blueberries) cultivated in one of the best-adapted areas in northern Italy. The pre-farm phase included the greenhouse gas emissions from the production of plants in the nursery and the transportation of the plants to the production farms. The farm phase involved the emissions of greenhouse gases from chemical products, the water used for irrigation, the generation of waste, and the consumption of electricity and other energy. The post-farm phase comprised the transportation of the products to the distribution centre (DC) and their storage in the DC. The use phase is not included in the system, nor is transportation from the supermarket to the home of the final consumer, but the disposal of the packaging is nevertheless taken into account. Indeed, the use of traditional plastic materials during both the field phase (nursery and cultivation) and the post-harvesting phase (packaging) produced the greatest estimated impact.

  1. A life cycle assessment of non-renewable energy use and greenhouse gas emissions associated with blueberry and raspberry production in northern Italy

    Girgenti, Vincenzo, E-mail: [Dipartimento di Scienze Agrarie, Forestali e Alimentari, Università degli Studi di Torino, Via Leonardo da Vinci 44, 10095 Grugliasco, TO (Italy); Peano, Cristiana; Bounous, Michele [Dipartimento di Scienze Agrarie, Forestali e Alimentari, Università degli Studi di Torino, Via Leonardo da Vinci 44, 10095 Grugliasco, TO (Italy); Baudino, Claudio [AgrifruttaSoc. Coop. Agr., Via Beinette 6, 12016 Peveragno, CN (Italy)


    This study examined the emissions produced during the pre-farm, farm and post-farm phases of the production cycle of raspberries and giant American whortleberries (blueberries) cultivated in one of the best-adapted areas in northern Italy. The pre-farm phase included the greenhouse gas emissions from the production of plants in the nursery and the transportation of the plants to the production farms. The farm phase involved the emissions of greenhouse gases from chemical products, the water used for irrigation, the generation of waste, and the consumption of electricity and other energy. The post-farm phase comprised the transportation of the products to the distribution centre (DC) and their storage in the DC. The use phase is not included in the system, nor is transportation from the supermarket to the home of the final consumer, but the disposal of the packaging is nevertheless taken into account. Indeed, the use of traditional plastic materials during both the field phase (nursery and cultivation) and the post-harvesting phase (packaging) produced the greatest estimated impact. - Highlights: • LCA is a system for evaluating the environmental sustainability of products and processes. • The disposal of the packaging material is taken into account. • The LCA methodology has been applied to quantify the emissions of berry fruits. • Species index: blueberry and raspberry.

  2. Azolla-Anabaena as a Biofertilizer for Rice Paddy Fields in the Po Valley, a Temperate Rice Area in Northern Italy

    Stefano Bocchi


    Full Text Available Azolla is a floating pteridophyte, which contains as endosymbiont the nitrogen-fixing cyanobacterium Anabaena azollae (Nostocaceae family. Widely cultivated in the Asian regions, Azolla is either incorporated into the soil before rice transplanting or grown as a dual crop along with rice. To examine the feasibility of its use in flooded rice fields sited in the Temperate European Areas, we carried out a series of experiments in PVC tanks during 2000–2002 in Po Valley (northern Italy conditions, to study the growth-development dynamics and the resistance/tolerance to low temperatures and to commonly used herbicides of several different Azolla strains. Three out of five strains tested survived the winter, with an increase in biomass from March to May producing approximately 30–40 kg ha−1 of nitrogen. One of these strains, named “Milan”, emerged as the most resistant to herbicide and the most productive. Of the herbicides tested, Propanil permitted the survival of growing Azolla.

  3. The influence of physical soil properties on the water supply of irrigated orchards-some examples from Val Venosta (South Tyrol/Northern Italy).

    Jansen, Sven Grashey


    In irrigated agriculture, irrigation water volume and duration of irrigation can be optimized utilizing soil water dynamics data. Val Venosta in South Tyrol (Northern Italy) is a region where irrigation represents a central factor of production in the Tyrolese fruit-growing areas. Intensive orchard production is practised within an area of about 18.000 ha. Although fruit cultivation experts believe that intensive fruit cultivation should be based on regular irrigation of the fruit trees to guarantee optimum results in both fruit quantity and quality; however, fruit growers in the region follow very subjective criteria in regard to irrigation. At many locations much more water is used than the fruit trees actually need. Therefore irrigation in this region is a very cost-intensive factor of production and is criticized by the public for both economic and ecological reasons. To optimize the irrigation practice in this region it is essential to provide an objective basis for the irrigation process. A system of "precision irrigation" proposed, which is therefore based on objective and quantitative criteria focusing primarily on soil properties and hydrologic balance. This contribution will provide an overview of the current situation of irrigation and present results from soil-physical and soil-hydrological studies performed in this region since 2003.

  4. On the mechanical behaviour of a low-angle normal fault: the Alto Tiberina fault (Northern Apennines, Italy) system case study

    Vadacca, Luigi; Casarotti, Emanuele; Chiaraluce, Lauro; Cocco, Massimo


    Geological and seismological observations have been used to parameterize 2-D numerical elastic models to simulate the interseismic deformation of a complex extensional fault system located in the Northern Apennines (Italy). The geological system is dominated by the presence of the Alto Tiberina fault (ATF), a large (60 km along strike) low-angle normal fault dipping 20° in the brittle crust (0-15 km). The ATF is currently characterized by a high and constant rate of microseismic activity, and no moderate-to-large magnitude earthquakes have been associated with this fault in the past 1000 years. Modelling results have been compared with GPS data in order to understand the mechanical behaviour of this fault and a suite of minor syn- and antithetic normal fault segments located in the main fault hanging wall. The results of the simulations demonstrate the active role played by the Alto Tiberina fault in accommodating the ongoing tectonic extension in this sector of the chain. The GPS velocity profile constructed through the fault system cannot be explained without including the ATF's contribution to deformation, indicating that this fault, although misoriented, has to be considered tectonically active and with a creeping behaviour below 5 km depth. The low-angle normal fault also shows a high degree of tectonic coupling with its main antithetic fault (the Gubbio fault), suggesting that creeping along the ATF may control the observed strain localization and the pattern of microseismic activity.

  5. Crustal structure of Northern Latium (central Italy) from receiver functions analysis: New evidences of a post-collisional back-arc margin evolution

    Buttinelli, Mauro; Chiarabba, Claudio; Anselmi, Mario; Bianchi, Irene; De Rita, Donatella; Quattrocchi, Fedora


    The crustal velocity structure in a region of central Apennines of Italy at the hinge between the highly stretched portion of the Monte Argentario promontory and the magmatic province of the Tolfa Domes Complex (Northern Latium) is discussed in this study. S-wave velocities at depth have been constrained by the modeling of P-wave receiver functions (RF) from both temporary and permanent broadband seismic stations. The computer 3D Vs models show a thin crust (19-25 km) made of a shallow and thin sedimentary cover, a very high velocity and anisotropic layer related to a metamorphic basement, and a low Vs anisotropic layer in the middle-lower crust above a shallow Moho discontinuity modeled at about 20 km depth. The volcano-tectonic evolution of this portion of Tyrrhenian back-arc margin has been strongly influenced by its peculiar crustal architecture. The low-Vs layer acted as a shear zone in the middle-lower crust during the Tyrrhenian extension, also helping the development of Plio-Quaternary magmatism. Our findings potentially give new constraints on the evolution of the area and to the general comprehension of back-arc development in collisional regions.

  6. Precarity: causes, effects and consequences of insecure working and living conditions in a multicultural, rural area of northern Italy (South Tyrol

    Christine Tschöll


    Full Text Available The research project deals with the current issue of precarity, its mechanisms, risks, effects, coping strategies as well as coping competences and addresses the impact of work-based insecurities, rising social inequalities within and across nations, with a specific regional focus on South Tyrol - a multicultural, rural area in northern Italy, bordering with Austria. Finally, it is important to identify possible innovative solutions for the labour market, Human Resources strategies and social policies. The concept of work will be related to all securitized fundamental rights, their socialization context, the global change of values and the social change in the welfare state. The recent transformation from discourses on inequality and poverty towards social exclusion and inclusion indicates a conceptual shift in the societal management of social inequalities. The global financial crisis has highlighted the connectedness between corporate and household risk behaviour and management, and their socially inequitable effects. The interdisciplinary view enables a focus on multiple insecurities and how they interact to produce precarious work relations, in reference to working conditions and the experience of social exclusion, the links between de-regulation, liberalization and the individualization of employment risks, but also the development of interest representation and social organizations for supporting labour market outsiders. The paper describes the current process of defining the research design, preliminary reflections for the case study and shows first outcomes of the project.

  7. Application of a bioeconomic model for supporting the management process of the small pelagic fishery in the Veneto Region, northern Adriatic Sea, Italy

    Silvia Silvestri


    Full Text Available We explore the sustainability of the small pelagics fishery in the northern Adriatic sea, northeastern Italy, by means of a bioeconomic simulation model. This model reproduces the biological and economic conditions in which the fisheries occur. Starting from an initial condition (2004, the simulation model incorporates the biological and economic processes of the resources and the fishing fleet and computes the most probable future trajectory of the system under different management conditions. We analysed the projection of selected indicators (biomass, recruitment, catches, profits under four different management scenarios based on effort control, and we assessed the performance of these management measures against the current situation. The four scenarios were: i increase in fuel price, ii reduction in fuel price, iii limiting the number of days at sea, and iv extending the fishing period. Each management event was introduced in the third year of the simulation. For each scenario a stochastic simulation was carried out. Our results show that the impact of each management measure tested was not homogeneous across the fleet. In particular, comparatively smaller vessels generally display narrower profit margins and tend to be more sensitive to negative shocks, reinforcing the idea that management measures should be calibrated by stratifying the fleet before implementation.

  8. Insights on the opening of the Galerian mammal migration pathway from magnetostratigraphy of the Pleistocene marine-continental transition in the Arda River section (northern Italy)

    Monesi, Edoardo; Muttoni, Giovanni; Scardia, Giancarlo; Felletti, Fabrizio; Bona, Fabio; Sala, Benedetto; Tremolada, Fabrizio; Francou, Carlo; Raineri, Gianluca


    We investigated the magnetostratigraphy of the Arda River section (northern Italy) where the transition from marine to continental sedimentation occurring in the Po River basin during the Pleistocene is registered. Four magnetic polarity reversals were used to construct an age model of sedimentation aided by marine biostratigraphy and tied to a standard δ18O curve from the literature. The section spans from the Olduvai subchron (1.94-1.78 Ma) across the Jaramillo subchron (1.07-0.99 Ma) up to the Brunhes-Matuyama boundary (0.78 Ma). The onset of continental deposition occurred during marine isotope stage (MIS) 30 at ˜1.04 Ma. An association of Villafranchian and Early Galerian mammals, including Sus strozzii and Ursus dolinensis, has been found in the continental sediments dated to MIS 29-27 (˜0.99 Ma). Above follows a prominent fluvial conglomerate attributed to the first major lowstand of the Pleistocene culminating with MIS 22 at ˜0.9 Ma during the late Early Pleistocene climate turnover (EPT). These and other data from the literature are used to reconstruct the onset of continental deposition in the greater Po basin and shed light on the opening of the migration pathway that brought far-traveled Galerian mammal immigrants to enter Europe for the first time during the EPT.

  9. A community outbreak of haemolytic-uraemic syndrome in children occurring in a large area of northern Italy over a period of several months.

    Tozzi, A. E.; Niccolini, A.; Caprioli, A.; Luzzi, I.; Montini, G.; Zacchello, G.; Gianviti, A.; Principato, F.; Rizzoni, G.


    From March to October 1993, 15 cases of haemolytic-uraemic syndrome (HUS) in children were detected in a large area of northern Italy, where only 8 cases had occurred in the previous 5 years. Analysis of stool and serum specimens obtained from 14 cases showed evidence of Verotoxin-producing Escherichia coli (VTEC) infection in 13. Serum antibodies to the E. coli O157 lipopolysaccharide (LPS) were found in 8 patients and to the O111 LPS in 2. An O86 VTEC was isolated from another patient. Fourteen children needed dialysis, and 1 died. No obvious epidemiologic link was observed among cases, most of whom lived in small townships. A case-control study did not show an association between HUS and food or exposure to cattle, but suggested an association with contact with chicken coops (OR = 6.5, 95% C.I. 1.2-34.9). However, VTEC were not isolated from stool samples obtained from the chicken coops involved. The risk factors for VTEC infection related to living in rural settlements, including the exposure to live poultry, should be considered in outbreak investigations. PMID:7925660

  10. Surveillance of the chikungunya vector Aedes albopictus (Skuse) in Emilia-Romagna (northern Italy): organizational and technical aspects of a large scale monitoring system.

    Carrieri, Marco; Albieri, Alessandro; Angelini, Paola; Baldacchini, Flavia; Venturelli, Claudio; Zeo, Silvia Mascali; Bellini, Romeo


    The chikungunya virus outbreak that occurred in 2007 in northern Italy (Emilia-Romagna region) prompted the development of a large scale monitoring system of the population density of Aedes albopictus (Skuse, 1894), comparable at the provincial and municipal levels. In 2007, egg density data presented an aggregated distribution (VMR >1) and Taylor's power law was applied to calculate the minimum number of ovitraps needed to obtain the prefixed precision levels: D=0.2 in the areas where the chikungunya epidemic occurred and D=0.3 in all the other urban areas >600 ha. The estimated minimum ovitrap number was then used to set up a monitoring network at the regional scale in season 2008 (May-October). In 242 municipalities 2,741 ovitraps were activated and the 2008 sampled data showed a similar aggregated distribution as in 2007. The adequacy of the monitoring design was evaluated by recalculating the Taylor's coefficients and the minimum ovitrap number for each urban area >600 ha using the 2008 egg density data. The comparison between the two estimates showed that the minimum ovitrap number calculated in 2007 was underestimated by 2.7% in weeks 22-41 but was overestimated by 29.4% if referring to the period of highest population density (weeks 27-37). The low cost of the proposed monitoring system, based on the use of fortnightly checked ovitraps, could make it economically sustainable even in a non-epidemic season. © 2011 The Society for Vector Ecology.

  11. The Influence of Vegetation and Landscape Structural Connectivity on Butterflies (Lepidoptera: Papilionoidea and Hesperiidae), Carabids (Coleoptera: Carabidae), Syrphids (Diptera: Syrphidae), and Sawflies (Hymenoptera: Symphyta) in Northern Italy Farmland.

    Burgio, Giovanni; Sommaggio, Daniele; Marini, Mario; Puppi, Giovanna; Chiarucci, Alessandro; Landi, Sara; Fabbri, Roberto; Pesarini, Fausto; Genghini, Marco; Ferrari, Roberto; Muzzi, Enrico; van Lenteren, Joop C; Masetti, Antonio


    Landscape structure as well as local vegetation influence biodiversity in agroecosystems. A study was performed to evaluate the effect of floristic diversity, vegetation patterns, and landscape structural connectivity on butterflies (Lepidoptera: Papilionoidea and Hesperiidae), carabids (Coleoptera: Carabidae), syrphids (Diptera: Syrphidae), and sawflies (Hymenoptera: Symphyta). Vegetation analysis and insect samplings were carried out in nine sites within an intensively farmed landscape in northern Italy. Plant species richness and the percentage of tree, shrub, and herb cover were determined by means of the phytosociological method of Braun-Blanquet. Landscape structural connectivity was measured as the total length of hedgerow network (LHN) in a radius of 500 m around the center of each sampling transect. Butterflies species richness and abundance were positively associated both to herb cover and to plant species richness, but responded negatively to tree and shrub cover. Shrub cover was strictly correlated to both species richness and activity density of carabids. The species richness of syrphids was positively influenced by herb cover and plant richness, whereas their abundance was dependent on ligneous vegetation and LHN. Rarefaction analysis revealed that sawfly sampling was not robust and no relationship could be drawn with either vegetation parameters or structural connectivity. The specific responses of each insect group to the environmental factors should be considered in order to refine and optimize landscape management interventions targeting specific conservation endpoints. © The Authors 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email:

  12. Intestinal Parasites of Owned Dogs and Cats from Metropolitan and Micropolitan Areas: Prevalence, Zoonotic Risks, and Pet Owner Awareness in Northern Italy

    Zanzani, Sergio Aurelio; Gazzonis, Alessia Libera; Berrilli, Federica


    Intestinal parasites of dogs and cats are cosmopolitan pathogens with zoonotic potential for humans. Our investigation considered their diffusion in dogs and cats from northern Italy areas, specifically the metropolitan area of Milan and two micropolitan areas of neighboring provinces. It included the study of the level of awareness in pet owners of the zoonotic potential from these parasites. A total of 409 fresh fecal samples were collected from household dogs and cats for copromicroscopic analysis and detection of Giardia duodenalis coproantigens. The assemblages of Giardia were also identified. A questionnaire about intestinal parasites biology and zoonotic potential was submitted to 185 pet owners. The overall prevalence of intestinal parasites resulted higher in cats (47.37%−60.42%) and dogs (57.41%−43.02%) from micropolitan areas than that from the metropolis of Milan (dogs: P = 28.16%; cats: P = 32.58 %). The zoonotic parasites infecting pets under investigation were T. canis and T. cati, T. vulpis, Ancylostomatidae, and G. duodenalis assemblage A. Only 49.19% of pet owners showed to be aware of the risks for human health from canine and feline intestinal parasites. Parasitological results in pets and awareness determination in their owners clearly highlight how the role of veterinarians is important in indicating correct and widespread behaviors to reduce risks of infection for pets and humans in urban areas. PMID:24883320




    Full Text Available Seep-carbonates are generally related to hydrocarbon seepage on continental margins. Modern cold seeps are abundant in actively deforming tectonic settings, suggesting that tectonics is one of the major controlling factor on fluid emissions. Hydrocarbon seepages areconsidered major geological sources of atmospheric methane, one of the most important green-house gases, and have also been related to climate changes. However, the interplaybetween tectonics and climate change in forcing seepage is not clearly understood. Miocene seep-carbonates, formed in a collisional settingsuch as that ofthe Salsomaggiore area of the Northern Apennines(Italy, provide an opportunitytoassess accumulation and release of methane in response to tectonics and climate change along a convergent margin. Thestudiedseep-carbonatesarerelated to fluid emissions of various intensities coeval with tectonic pulses.Newplanktonic foraminiferal biostratigraphic datareveals thatdepositionof these seep-carbonatesislate Serravallian-early Tortonian in age and partiallycoeval with the Miller’s global cooling event Mi 5 (as used below. These seep-carbonates were deposited in two stages with different seepage modes. During the first stage, local tectonic pulses at the onset of the Mi5 event may have producedslow seepage, whereas during the second stage regional tectonics and more extreme climatic conditions (coolest peak of Mi5 event may have resulted inafast and more intense seepage as suggested by increasing occurrence of chaotic facies. In the Salsomaggiore Ridge, tectonics and the Mi5 cooling event actively concurredtothe deposition of seep-carbonates in both stages.

  14. Sensitivity Analysis and Investigation of the Behaviour of the UTOPIA Land-Surface Process Model: A Case Study for Vineyards in Northern Italy

    Francone, C.; Cassardo, C.; Richiardone, R.; Confalonieri, R.


    We used sensitivity-analysis techniques to investigate the behaviour of the land-surface model UTOPIA while simulating the micrometeorology of a typical northern Italy vineyard ( Vitis vinifera L.) under average climatic conditions. Sensitivity-analysis experiments were performed by sampling the vegetation parameter hyperspace using the Morris method and quantifying the parameter relevance across a wide range of soil conditions. This method was used since it proved its suitability for models with high computational time or with a large number of parameters, in a variety of studies performed on different types of biophysical models. The impact of input variability was estimated on reference model variables selected among energy (e.g. net radiation, sensible and latent heat fluxes) and hydrological (e.g. soil moisture, surface runoff, drainage) budget components. Maximum vegetation cover and maximum leaf area index were ranked as the most relevant parameters, with sensitivity indices exceeding the remaining parameters by about one order of magnitude. Soil variability had a high impact on the relevance of most of the vegetation parameters: coefficients of variation calculated on the sensitivity indices estimated for the different soils often exceeded 100 %. The only exceptions were represented by maximum vegetation cover and maximum leaf area index, which showed a low variability in sensitivity indices while changing soil type, and confirmed their key role in affecting model results.

  15. Determining flow directions in turbidites: An integrated sedimentological and magnetic fabric study of the Miocene Marnoso Arenacea Formation (northern Apennines, Italy)

    Felletti, Fabrizio; Dall'Olio, Eleonora; Muttoni, Giovanni


    Depositional models of turbidity flows require estimating paleocurrent directions using sedimentological indicators such as flute and ripple marks, but these are not always present in outcrop sections or drill cores. In this study, we apply the anisotropy of magnetic susceptibility (AMS) as an alternative tool to estimate paleocurrent directions in a case-study turbiditic system: the Marnoso Arenacea foredeep turbidites of Miocene age exposed in the northern Apennines of Italy. Different depositional facies have been sampled for AMS and additional rock-magnetic analyses. We observed a good agreement between paleocurrent directions from flute casts at the base of turbidite beds and mean directions of maximum magnetic susceptibility axes in organized facies such as massive and laminated sandstones, even if a relatively small but apparently consistent offset of ~ 15-20° seems to be present. Highly dispersed AMS fabrics were instead observed in disordered facies such as convoluted and undulated sandstones as well as debrites. This strong correlation between hydrodynamic regimes of depositional facies and AMS data represents a novel contribution and confirms the validity of the AMS method to estimate flow directions in the absence of sedimentological indicators. Finally, paleomagnetic analyses from the literature were used to reconstruct the paleogeography of the Marnoso Arenacea basin and make inferences about the origin and direction of transport of the sediments at the basin scale.

  16. Emplacement of pyroclastic density currents (PDCs) in a deep-sea environment: The Val d'Aveto Formation case (Northern Apennines, Italy)

    Di Capua, Andrea; Groppelli, Gianluca


    The occurrence of PDC deposits in a foredeep basin sequence, named Val d'Aveto Formation (32-29 Ma, Northern Apennines, Italy), provides new information on the behavior of pyroclastic density currents entering the water. In this work, stratigraphic, petrographic and mineralogical features that characterize three pyroclastic deposits have been described and analyzed in the field (facies and lithological analysis on the blocky-size fraction) and in the laboratory (image analyses on the blocky-size detritus, optical analyses of the microtextures, mineralogical analyses through X-ray powder diffraction (XRPD) and scanning electron microscope with energy dispersive X-ray spectometry (SEM-EDS). The deposits are lapilli- to blocky-size, with a blocky-size fraction constituted of accidental detritus. In thin sections, their groundmass texture varies from porphyritic to eutaxitic where coarser particles become close each others. Growth rims have been also detected around plagioclase crystals. Pyrite habits and oxidation, and plagioclase albitization are consistent with hydrothermal temperature conditions of 200 °C. All these results have been compared with the information provided by modern examples of PDC deposits and laboratory experiments on the behavior of water/hot particles mixing. Grain-to-grain collision has been considered as the main flow mechanism that sustained and avoided the disaggregation of the PDCs entering the water.

  17. Redox reactions and the influence of natural Mn oxides on Cr oxidation in a contaminated site in northern Italy: evidence from Cr stable-isotopes and EPR spectroscopy

    Marafatto F. F.


    Full Text Available Hexavalent chromium-contaminated groundwaters and sediments in northern Italy have been studied using the Cr stable-isotope systematics and electron spin resonance spectroscopy (ESR, in order to explore redox changes and soil-groundwater interactions. The isotopic data indicate a possible Cr(VI source released into the environment from an industrial plant. EPR spectra on the sediments which constitute the aquifers show a broad asymmetric absorption due to coupled Fe(III and coupled Cr(III ions and a well resolved hyperfine structure due to manganese ions, resulting from Mn(IV and Mn(II. The isotopic and EPR data support the hypothesis of Cr(III being oxidized by Mn oxides which are widespread in the aquifer, possibly related to the oscillation of the phreatic level. The obtained results highlight the usefulness of chromium stable isotopes as environmental tracers and support the observations that naturally occurring Mn oxides in soils may catalize Cr oxidation from the stable Cr(III form to the toxic Cr(VI soluble form, yielding valuable information in planning remediation interventions.

  18. Domino effects induced from rockfalls on industrial plants, Brescia, Italy

    Lari, Serena; Frattini, Paolo; Battista Crosta, Giovanni; Agliardi, Federico; Buldrini, Marco; Oliveri, Stefano; Seminati, Paolo; Pozza, Francesco


    The impact of industrial accidents triggered by landslides in the Lombardy Alps (northern Italy) is not negligible, as demonstrated by the event of the refinery Ilsea (Valmadrera, LC), where an explosion caused by a rockfall caused a victim and two injuries in 1981. This work proposes a methodology for the assessment of societal and economic risk connected to industrial accidents triggered by rockfalls in the area of Brescia, northern Italy. The study area is located between Lake Iseo and Lake Garda, and includes lower Valcamonica, lower Valtrompia, and lower Valsabbia. The area has an extension of 1,508 km2 and includes 82 municipalities. 727,000 people live in this area, where valley bottoms are strongly urbanised, and densely populated. The expected frequency of occurrence of rockfalls in the area was calculated by combining the frequency of block detachment and the frequency of transit. The detachment frequency was estimated using intensity-frequency curves, obtained adapting and calibrating existing curves from the literature using historical events of the area (374 events in 20 years). Considering that detachment frequency depends on the size of the block, 7 different scenarios were analysed, each of them characterised by blocks with different volume, from 0.01 m3 to 10,000 m3. The transit frequency was calculated by means of the rockfall 3D model HY-STONE. The model simulates the propagation of three-dimensional trajectories of blocks on complex terrain morphologies described by a DTM. Simulations were performed using a 20 m x 20 m DTM, and considering as source areas all the cells steepest than 40° (323 km2). Ten blocks were launched from each source, with a stochastic approach that accounts for uncertainties about the modelling parameters. Energy restitution and rolling friction coefficients were assigned to different cells according to different lithology and land use, and calibrated using historical events. As a result of the model, kinetic energy of

  19. Assessing Natural Background Levels of aquifers in the Metropolitan Area of Milan (Lombardy)

    De Caro, Mattia; Crosta, Giovanni; Frattini, Paolo


    The European Water Framework Directive (WFD 2000/60/CE) requires Member States to evaluate the status of groundwater bodies in order to reach a good water quality for human consumption. One of the preliminary steps for defining the status of groundwater bodies consists in the definition and evaluation of the so-called Natural Background Levels (NBL). The NBL or Baseline level can be defined as "the range of concentration of a given element, isotope or chemical compound in solution, derived entirely from natural, geological, biological or atmospheric sources, under conditions not perturbed by anthropogenic activity" (Edmund and Shand, 2009). The qualitative analysis for a large area (ca 4500 Km2) of the Po Plain around the Milan Metropolitan area (Lombardy, Italy) is presented in this study. Despite the aquifers in the Milan metropolitan area are an incredible groundwater resource for a very large population (3.195.629 inhabitants in the metropolitan area, data at November 2014) and a highly industrialized area, a groundwater baseline characterization is still missing. In order to attain the hydro-geochemical characterization a complete geodatabase was built (120.655 chemical samples from 1980 to 2014). This database has been explored by classical and multivariate statistical analyses to provide relationships among the more influential lithological, hydrogeological and hydro-chemical variables. Finally, the NBLs of different chemical species which may be anthropogenic sensitive (Na, Cl, K, NO3, SO4, NH4, As, Fe, Cr, Fe, Mn, Zn) and for multiple aquifer bodies (phreatic, semi-confined and confined aquifer) are evaluated. Two different approaches are applied: the Pre-Selection method (BRIDGE, 2006) and the Component-Separation method. The first one (PS) consists in the exclusion of samples from the available dataset that could indicate human activities then deriving the NBL as the 90th percentile of the remaining data. The second one (CS) consists in the fitting of

  20. Syn-thrusting polygonal normal faults exposed in the hinge of the Cingoli anticline, northern Apennines, Italy

    Lorenzo ePetracchini


    Full Text Available The Cingoli arcuate anticline is part of the Apennines fold-thrust belt in Italy. The anticline involves sedimentary carbonate strata generally affected by syn-thrusting contractional structures such as bed-normal pressure solution seams, folds, and reverse faults. An exception is constituted by an outcrop in the anticline hinge, where sub-horizontal carbonate and chert beds are affected by joints and intraformational short normal faults. These faults are poorly-systematic and conceivably polygonal in map view. They cut through the carbonate beds while usually stop against the chert layers that are bent and extended along the faults themselves. At the fault tips, the displacement is generally transferred, via a lateral step, to an adjacent similar fault segment. The fault surfaces are often characterized by slickolites, greenish clayey residue, and micro-breccias including chert and carbonate clasts. Fault displacement is partly or largely accommodated by pressure solution. The faults, in effect, are usually accompanied by bed-parallel pressure solution seams in the two contractional quadrants located at the present or past fault tips. The pressure solution features fade away departing from the faults. This evidence and others are analytically explained with fault tip stress distributions. The faults are interpreted as polygonal normal faults syn-tectonically (syn-thrusting nucleated in response to multi-directional stretching processes occurred at the Cingoli triple-folded anticline extrados. The faults then grew through a four-stage process: (1. stop the faults stopped at the competent chert beds; (2. shrink faulting produced shrinkage (pressure solution of carbonate beds at the fault compressive tips; (3. shrink and step the faults stepped laterally at the competent chert beds; (4. shatter the chert beds were shattered along the fault surfaces. The case presented constitutes the first reported one of syn-thrusting non-diagenetic polygonal

  1. Association between PM10 concentrations and school absences in proximity of a cement plant in northern Italy.

    Marcon, Alessandro; Pesce, Giancarlo; Girardi, Paolo; Marchetti, Pierpaolo; Blengio, Gianstefano; de Zolt Sappadina, Simona; Falcone, Salvatore; Frapporti, Guglielmo; Predicatori, Francesca; de Marco, Roberto


    Dusts are one of the main air pollutants emitted during cement manufacturing. A substantial part of these are breathable particles that are less than 10 μm in diameter (PM10), which represent a potential threat for the health of the exposed population. This study aimed at evaluating the short-term effects of PM10 concentrations on the health of children, aged 6-14 years, who attended the schools in Fumane (Italy), in proximity (1.2 km) to a large cement plant. School absenteeism was used as a proxy indicator of child morbidity. Time series of daily school absences and PM10 concentrations were collected for 3 school-years from 2007 to 2010 (541 school-days, 462 children on average). The associations between PM10 concentrations and school absence rates in the same day (lag0) and in the following 4 days (lag1 to lag4) were evaluated using generalised additive models, smoothed for medium/long term trends and adjusted for day of the week, influenza outbreaks, daily temperature and rain precipitations. The average concentration of PM10 in the period was 34 (range: 4-183) μg/m(3). An average 10 μg/m(3) increase of PM10 concentration in the previous days (lag0-4) was associated with a statistically significant 2.5% (95%CI: 1.1-4.0%) increase in the rate of school absences. The highest increase in the absence rates (2.4%; 95%CI: 1.2-3.5%) was found 2 days after exposure (lag2). These findings provide epidemiological evidence of the acute health effects of PM10 in areas with annual concentrations that are lower than the legal European Union limit of 40 μg/m(3), and support the need to establish more restrictive legislative standards.

  2. Animal tumour registry of two provinces in northern Italy: incidence of spontaneous tumours in dogs and cats

    Carminato Antonio


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Cancer is a major cause of death in domestic animals. Furthermore, many forms of pet neoplasm resemble that of their human counterparts in biologic behaviour, pathologic expression, and recognised risk factors. In April 2005, a pilot project was activated so as to establish a dog and cat tumour registry living in the Venice and Vicenza provinces (Veneto Region, north-eastern Italy, with the aim of estimating the incidence of spontaneous tumours. Results Through a telephone survey, the estimates of canine and feline populations of the catchment area turned out to be of 296,318 (CI +/- 30,201 and 214,683 (CI +/- 21,755 subjects, respectively. During the first three years, overall 2,509 canine and 494 feline cases of neoplasia were diagnosed. In dogs, the estimated annual incidence rate (IR per 100,000 dogs for all tumours was 282 in all the catchment area, whereas in cats the IR was much lower (IR = 77. Malignant and benign tumours were equally distributed in male and female dogs, whereas cats had a 4.6-fold higher incidence of malignant tumours than benign. In both dogs and cats, purebreds had an almost 2-fold higher incidence of malignant tumours than mixed breeds. Tumour incidence increased with age in both dog and cat populations. Conclusion This study has provided estimates of incidence of spontaneous neoplasm in companion animals. Further attempts will be made to increase the accuracy in the population size assessment and to ascertain the real gap with the official regional canine demographic registry. Veterinary practitioners may also benefit from the tumour registry insofar they may obtain data for specific breeds, age groups or geographical areas.

  3. Effects of heat recovery for district heating on waste incineration health impact: a simulation study in Northern Italy.

    Cordioli, Michele; Vincenzi, Simone; De Leo, Giulio A


    The construction of waste incinerators in populated areas always causes substantial public concern. Since the heat from waste combustion can be recovered to power district heating networks and allows for the switch-off of domestic boilers in urbanized areas, predictive models for health assessment should also take into account the potential benefits of abating an important source of diffuse emission. In this work, we simulated the dispersion of atmospheric pollutants from a waste incinerator under construction in Parma (Italy) into different environmental compartments and estimated the potential health effect of both criteria- (PM(10)) and micro-pollutants (PCDD/F, PAH, Cd, Hg). We analyzed two emission scenarios, one considering only the new incinerator, and the other accounting for the potential decrease in pollutant concentrations due to the activation of a district heating network. We estimated the effect of uncertainty in parameter estimation on health risk through Monte Carlo simulations. In addition, we analyzed the robustness of health risk to alternative assumptions on: a) the geographical origins of the potentially contaminated food, and b) the dietary habits of the exposed population. Our analysis showed that under the specific set of assumptions and emission scenarios explored in the present work: (i) the proposed waste incinerator plant appears to cause negligible harm to the resident population; (ii) despite the net increase in PM(10) mass balance, ground-level concentration of fine particulate matter may be curbed by the activation of an extensive district heating system powered through waste combustion heat recovery and the concurrent switch-off of domestic/industrial heating boilers. In addition, our study showed that the health risk caused by waste incineration emissions is sensitive to assumptions about the typical diet of the resident population, and the geographical origins of food production.

  4. RIGED-RA project - Restoration and management of Coastal Dunes in the Northern Adriatic Coast, Ravenna Area - Italy

    Giambastiani, Beatrice M. S.; Greggio, Nicolas; Sistilli, Flavia; Fabbri, Stefano; Scarelli, Frederico; Candiago, Sebastian; Anfossi, Giulia; Lipparini, Carlo A.; Cantelli, Luigi; Antonellini, Marco; Gabbianelli, Giovanni


    Coastal dunes play an important role in protecting the coastline. Unfortunately, in the last decades dunes have been removed or damaged by human activities. In the Emilia- Romagna region significant residual dune systems are found only along Ravenna and Ferrara coasts. In this context, the RIGED-RA project “Restoration and management of coastal dunes along the Ravenna coast” (2013-2016) has been launched with the aims to identify dynamics, erosion and vulnerability of Northern Adriatic coast and associated residual dunes, and to define intervention strategies for dune protection and restoration. The methodology is based on a multidisciplinary approach that integrates the expertise of several researchers and investigates all aspects (biotic and abiotic), which drive the dune-beach system. All datasets were integrated to identify test sites for applying dune restoration. The intervention finished in April 2016; evolution and restoration efficiency will be assessed.

  5. Co-Adapting Water Demand and Supply to Changing Climate in Agricultural Water Systems, A Case Study in Northern Italy

    Giuliani, M.; Li, Y.; Mainardi, M.; Arias Munoz, C.; Castelletti, A.; Gandolfi, C.


    Exponentially growing water demands and increasing uncertainties in the hydrologic cycle due to changes in climate and land use will challenge water resources planning and management in the next decade. Improving agricultural productivity is particularly critical, being this sector the one characterized by the highest water demand. Moreover, to meet projected growth in human population and per-capita food demand, agricultural production will have to significantly increase in the next decades, even though water availability is expected to decrease due to climate change impacts. Agricultural systems are called to adapt their strategies (e.g., changing crop patterns and the corresponding water demand, or maximizing the efficiency in the water supply modifying irrigation scheduling and adopting high efficiency irrigation techniques) in order to re-optimize the use of limited water resources. Although many studies have assessed climate change impacts on agricultural practices and water management, most of them assume few scenarios of water demand or water supply separately, while an analysis of their reciprocal feedbacks is still missing. Moreover, current practices are generally established according to historical agreements and normative constraints and, in the absence of dramatic failures, the shift toward more efficient water management is not easily achievable. In this work, we propose to activate an information loop between farmers and water managers to improve the effectiveness of agricultural water management practices by matching the needs of the farmers with the design of water supply strategies. The proposed approach is tested on a real-world case study, namely the Lake Como serving the Muzza-Bassa Lodigiana irrigation district (Italy). A distributed-parameter, dynamic model of the system allows to simulate crop growth and the final yield over a range of hydro-climatic conditions, irrigation strategies and water-related stresses. The spatial component of the

  6. Inversion tectonics in the Neogene basins of Tuscany (Northern Apennines, Italy): Insights from the Pisa-Viareggio basin.

    Argnani, A.; Rogledi, S.


    Several sedimentary basins are located in the internal portion of the Northern Apennines, bordering the eastern side of the Northern Tyrrhenian sea. These basins trend almost parallel to the Apennine range and are filled by Neogene sediments with thickness ranging between few 100's m to few km (Martini et al., 2001). Sediments belonging to these basins crop out extensively in western Tuscany, often appearing heavily deformed. Although classically interpreted as extensional basins (e.g., Martini and Sagri, 1993 and references therein), some papers call for an initial thrust-related origin (Finetti et al., 2001; Bonini and Sani, 2002), and the long-lasting debate about the origin of the Neogene basins of Tuscany is still ongoing (cfr. Brogi 2011 and Sani et al., 2004). This contribution aims at presenting the case of the Pisa-Viareggio basin, which is the northernmost one among the large basins of Tuscany (Pascucci et al., 2007). This basin straddles the coastline and has been investigated through the interpretation of a grid of industrial seismic profiles covering the Pisa plain and tied to exploration wells. In the Pisa-Viareggio basin seismic profiles show a west-dipping listric extensional fault that bounds the basin to the east, supporting an extensional origin. The basin is filled with up to 3 seconds of upper Messinian to Quaternary sediments, and extension mostly occurred during late Messinian-early Pliocene, although continuing with reduced intensity till the Quaternary. The southern part of this basin shows a superimposed contractional deformation (tectonic inversion), that progressively increases to the south, where the basin appears completely overturned and eroded in the Livorno Mountains. The basin-boundary fault trends roughly NNW-SSE and is buried in the Quaternary sediments of the Pisa plain, but it turns rather abruptly to N-S and NNE-SSW in the south, near Livorno. Inspection of detailed geological maps (Lazzarotto et al., 1990) suggests that the

  7. Anatomy of a volcanic district in a carbonate fold-and-thrust belt: the northern Volsci Range (Italy)

    Cardello, Giovanni Luca; Consorti, Lorenzo; Di Filippo, Michele


    The Volsci Range is a carbonate fold-and-thrust belt crossed by important normal faults in places associated with explosive volcanic deposits and hydrothermal ongoing activity within a moderately active seismic area (e.g., Latina earthquake 2012, Mw=3.8). Though distribution of volcanites is known, origin, volume and field characterization of a previously unstudied volcanic district is far to be addressed and it is the topic of this work. Several monogenic phreatomagmatic vents occur at the edges of the chain and within its backbone. The most relevant ones are characterized at the base by well welded to zeolitized tuffs, followed either by incoherent tuffs or by surges (e.g., Patrica, Valvisciolo) and locally by lavas (i.e., Giuliano di Roma, Pofi, Terracina) and finally by late Quaternary slope deposits. Most explosive units are largely composed by local Mesozoic platform carbonate litic clasts, showing different degrees of rounding and decarbonation. Micropalaeontology and facies analysis confirm that clasts are not older than late Jurassic and not younger than Cenomanian (Upper part of the Ostracoda and Miliolidae biozone). Therefore considering the stratigraphy beneath the vent points, litics could come from depths of about 400-600 meters. Juvenile litics of different composition, accretionary lapilli and the above mention carbonate litic clasts testify for a complex conduct composition and for the rupture of the carbonatic aquifer during eruption. Right at the southern slope of the Lepini Mounts (northern Volsci Range), as detected from the analysis of the n-2 residual gravity anomalies, monogenic circular vents (tuff rings) occur buried under Quaternary deposits or are just barely cropping out as necks (Doganella di Ninfa). Further south, despite the occurrence of pyroclastic deposits in boreholes, thickness and shape of volcanic deposits below the Pontina Plain is still unconstrained, providing a challenge for further geophysical studies. However, the

  8. Identification of Putative Wintering Areas and Ecological Determinants of Population Dynamics of Common House-Martin (Delichon urbicum and Common Swift (Apus apus Breeding in Northern Italy

    Roberto Ambrosini


    Full Text Available To identify the causes of population decline in migratory birds, researchers must determine the relative influence of environmental changes on population dynamics while the birds are on breeding grounds, wintering grounds, and en route between the two. This is problematic when the wintering areas of specific populations are unknown. Here, we first identified the putative wintering areas of Common House-Martin (Delichon urbicum and Common Swift (Apus apus populations breeding in northern Italy as those areas, within the wintering ranges of these species, where the winter Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI, which may affect winter survival, best predicted annual variation in population indices observed in the breeding grounds in 1992-2009. In these analyses, we controlled for the potentially confounding effects of rainfall in the breeding grounds during the previous year, which may affect reproductive success; the North Atlantic Oscillation Index (NAO, which may account for climatic conditions faced by birds during migration; and the linear and squared term of year, which account for nonlinear population trends. The areas thus identified ranged from Guinea to Nigeria for the Common House-Martin, and were located in southern Ghana for the Common Swift. We then regressed annual population indices on mean NDVI values in the putative wintering areas and on the other variables, and used Bayesian model averaging (BMA and hierarchical partitioning (HP of variance to assess their relative contribution to population dynamics. We re-ran all the analyses using NDVI values at different spatial scales, and consistently found that our population of Common House-Martin was primarily affected by spring rainfall (43%-47.7% explained variance and NDVI (24%-26.9%, while the Common Swift population was primarily affected by the NDVI (22.7%-34.8%. Although these results must be further validated, currently they are the only hypotheses about the wintering

  9. Epidemiology of Strongyloides stercoralis in northern Italy: results of a multicentre case–control study, February 2013 to July 2014

    Buonfrate, Dora; Baldissera, Mara; Abrescia, Fabrizio; Bassetti, Matteo; Caramaschi, Giacomo; Giobbia, Mario; Mascarello, Marta; Rodari, Paola; Scattolo, Novella; Napoletano, Giuseppina; Bisoffi, Zeno


    Strongyloides stercoralis is a soil-transmitted helminth widely diffused in tropical and subtropical regions of the world. Autochthonous cases have been also diagnosed sporadically in areas of temperate climate. We aimed at defining the epidemiology of strongyloidiasis in immigrants and Italians living in three northern Italian Regions. Screening for S. stercoralis infection was done with serology, confirmation tests were a second serological method or stool agar culture. A case–control approach was adopted and patients with a peripheral eosinophil count ≥ 500/mcL were classified as cases. Of 2,701 individuals enrolled here 1,351 were cases and 1,350 controls; 86% were Italians, 48% women. Italians testing positive were in 8% (97/1,137) cases and 1% (13/1,178) controls (adjusted odds ratio (aOR) 8.2; 95% confidence interval (CI): 4.5–14.8), while positive immigrants were in 17% (36/214) cases and in 2% (3/172) controls (aOR 9.6; 95% CI: 2.9–32.4). Factors associated with a higher risk of infection for all study participants were eosinophilia (p < 0.001) and immigration (p = 0.001). Overall, strongyloidiasis was nine-times more frequent in individuals with eosinophilia than in those with normal eosinophil count. PMID:27525375

  10. Epidemiology of Strongyloides stercoralis in northern Italy: results of a multicentre case-control study, February 2013 to July 2014.

    Buonfrate, Dora; Baldissera, Mara; Abrescia, Fabrizio; Bassetti, Matteo; Caramaschi, Giacomo; Giobbia, Mario; Mascarello, Marta; Rodari, Paola; Scattolo, Novella; Napoletano, Giuseppina; Bisoffi, Zeno


    Strongyloides stercoralis is a soil-transmitted helminth widely diffused in tropical and subtropical regions of the world. Autochthonous cases have been also diagnosed sporadically in areas of temperate climate. We aimed at defining the epidemiology of strongyloidiasis in immigrants and Italians living in three northern Italian Regions. Screening for S. stercoralis infection was done with serology, confirmation tests were a second serological method or stool agar culture. A case-control approach was adopted and patients with a peripheral eosinophil count ≥ 500/mcL were classified as cases. Of 2,701 individuals enrolled here 1,351 were cases and 1,350 controls; 86% were Italians, 48% women. Italians testing positive were in 8% (97/1,137) cases and 1% (13/1,178) controls (adjusted odds ratio (aOR) 8.2; 95% confidence interval (CI): 4.5-14.8), while positive immigrants were in 17% (36/214) cases and in 2% (3/172) controls (aOR 9.6; 95% CI: 2.9-32.4). Factors associated with a higher risk of infection for all study participants were eosinophilia (p < 0.001) and immigration (p = 0.001). Overall, strongyloidiasis was nine-times more frequent in individuals with eosinophilia than in those with normal eosinophil count.

  11. Prospecting for clay minerals within volcanic successions: Application of electrical resistivity tomography to characterise bentonite deposits in northern Sardinia (Italy)

    Longo, V.; Testone, V.; Oggiano, G.; Testa, A.


    Electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) is applied to prospect for and characterise a bentonitic clay deposit in northern Sardinia. Sardinian bentonites derived from the hydrothermal alteration of thick successions of pyroclastic flows and epiclastites are associated with the Oligo-Miocene calc-alkaline volcanic cycle. The alteration of these rocks is generally controlled by faults that control the local circulation of hydrothermal fluids. Two-dimensional ERT investigations were performed close to a faulted area to define the location, thickness and lateral continuity of the clayey body, and determine how it relates to faulting and stratigraphy. A line-based three-dimensional ERT data acquisition was carried out in a selected area to estimate the available clay reserves. The reliability of these resistivity models was assessed by comparison with local borehole data. Finally, the interpretation of the ERT results was optimised through synthetic modelling of the electrical resistivity imaging technique. The results define the extent and geometry of the bentonitic deposit with good accuracy and outline the scenarios where the ERT method may provide optimal results when prospecting for clay deposits.

  12. An integrated approach for analysing earthquake-induced surface effects: A case study from the Northern Apennines, Italy

    Castaldini, D.; Genevois, R.; Panizza, M.; Puccinelli, A.; Berti, M.; Simoni, A.

    This paper illustrates research addressing the subject of the earthquake-induced surface effects by means of a multidisciplinary approach: tectonics, neotectonics, seismology, geology, hydrogeology, geomorphology, soil/rock mechanics have been considered. The research is aimed to verify in areas affected by earthquake-triggered landslides a methodology for the identification of potentially unstable areas. The research was organized according to regional and local scale studies. In order to better emphasise the complexity of the relationships between all the parameters affecting the stability conditions of rock slopes in static and dynamic conditions a new integrated approach, Rock Engineering Systems (RES), was applied in the Northern Apennines. In the paper, the different phases of the research are described in detail and an example of the application of RES method in a sample area is reported. A significant aspect of the study can be seen in its attempt to overcome the exclusively qualitative aspects of research into the relationship between earthquakes and induced surface effects, and to advance the idea of beginning a process by which this interaction can be quantified.

  13. Development of advanced therapies in Italy: Management models and sustainability in six Italian cell factories.

    Gaipa, Giuseppe; Introna, Martino; Golay, Josee; Nolli, Maria Luisa; Vallanti, Giuliana; Parati, Eugenio; Giordano, Rosaria; Romagnoli, Luca; Melazzini, Mario; Biondi, Andrea; Biagi, Ettore


    On November 10, 2014, the representatives of all six certified Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) cell factories operating in the Lombardy Region of Italy convened a 1-day workshop in Milan titled "Management Models for the Development And Sustainability of Cell Factories: Public-Private Partnership?" The speakers and panelists addressed not only the many scientific, technological and cultural challenges faced by Lombardy Cell Factories, but also the potential impact of advanced therapy medicinal products (ATMPs) on public health and the role played by translational research in this process. Future perspectives for research and development (R&D) and manufacturing processes in the field of regenerative medicine were discussed as well. This report summarizes the most important issues raised by the workshop participants with particular emphasis on strengths and limitations of the R&D and manufacturing processes for innovative therapeutics in Lombardy and what can be improved in this context while maintaining GMP standards. The participants highlighted several strategies to translate patient-specific advanced therapeutics into scaled manufacturing products for clinical application. These included (i) the development of a synergistic interaction between public and private institutions, (ii) better integration with Italian regulatory agencies and (iii) the creation of a network among Lombardy cell factories and other Italian and European institutions.

  14. Local scale multiple quantitative risk assessment and uncertainty evaluation in a densely urbanised area (Brescia, Italy

    S. Lari


    Full Text Available The study of the interactions between natural and anthropogenic risks is necessary for quantitative risk assessment in areas affected by active natural processes, high population density and strong economic activities.

    We present a multiple quantitative risk assessment on a 420 km2 high risk area (Brescia and surroundings, Lombardy, Northern Italy, for flood, seismic and industrial accident scenarios. Expected economic annual losses are quantified for each scenario and annual exceedance probability-loss curves are calculated. Uncertainty on the input variables is propagated by means of three different methodologies: Monte-Carlo-Simulation, First Order Second Moment, and point estimate.

    Expected losses calculated by means of the three approaches show similar values for the whole study area, about 64 000 000 € for earthquakes, about 10 000 000 € for floods, and about 3000 € for industrial accidents. Locally, expected losses assume quite different values if calculated with the three different approaches, with differences up to 19%.

    The uncertainties on the expected losses and their propagation, performed with the three methods, are compared and discussed in the paper. In some cases, uncertainty reaches significant values (up to almost 50% of the expected loss. This underlines the necessity of including uncertainty in quantitative risk assessment, especially when it is used as a support for territorial planning and decision making. The method is developed thinking at a possible application at a regional-national scale, on the basis of data available in Italy over the national territory.

  15. Crustal structure of Tolfa domes complex (northern Latium - Italy) inferred from receiver functions analysis: an interplay between tectonics and magmatism

    Buttinelli, M.; Bianchi, I.; Anselmi, M.; Chiarabba, C.; de Rita, D.; Quattrocchi, F.


    The Tolfa-Cerite volcanic district developed along the Tyrrhenian passive margin of central Italy, as part of magmatic processes started during the middle Pliocene. In this area the uncertainties on the deep crustal structures and the definition of the intrusive bodies geometry are focal issues that still need to be addressed. After the onset of the spreading of the Tyrrhenian sea during the Late Miocene, the emplacement of the intrusive bodies of the Tolfa complex (TDC), in a general back-arc geodynamical regime, generally occurred in a low stretching rate, in correspondence of the junctions between major lithospheric discontinuities. Normal faults, located at the edge of Mio-Pliocene basins, were used as preferential pathways for the rising of magmatic masses from the mantle to the surface. We used teleseismic recordings at the TOLF and MAON broad band station of the INGV seismic network (located between the Argentario promontory and Tolfa-Ceriti dome complexes -TDC-) to image the principal seismic velocity discontinuities by receiver function analysis (RF's). Together with RF’s velocity models of the area computed using the teleseismic events recorded by a temporary network of eight stations deployed around the TDC, we achieve a general crustal model of this area. The geometry of the seismic network has been defined to focus on the crustal structure beneath the TDC, trying to define the main velocity changes attributable to the intrusive bodies, the calcareous basal complex, the deep metamorphic basement, the lower crust and the Moho. The analysis of these data show the Moho at a depth of 23 km in the TDC area and 20 km in the Argentario area. Crustal models also show an unexpected velocity decrease between 12 and 18 km, consistent with a slight dropdown of the Vp/Vs ratio, imputable to a regional mid-crustal shear zone inherited from the previous alpine orogenesis, re-activated in extensional tectonic by the early opening phases of the Tyrrhenian sea. Above

  16. Transpirative Deficit Index (TDI) for the management of water scarcity in irrigated areas: development and application in northern Italy

    Borghi, Anna; Facchi, Arianna; Rienzner, Michele; Gandolfi, Claudio


    In Europe, the monitoring and assessment of drought is entrusted to the European Drought Observatory (EDO). EDO indicators are calculated considering rainfed agriculture and delivered on a 5 km grid. However, in southern Europe, irrigation may compensate for potentially severe agricultural droughts and specific water scarcity indicators that explicitly consider irrigation are needed. In the Po River Plain, irrigated crops cover more than 70% of the agricultural land, massive amounts of water are diverted from rivers for irrigation, and surface irrigation methods are largely applied. Nowadays, the region is not a water scarce basin, but irrigation water shortages have occurred with increased frequency during the last two decades. Moreover, a recent EU report shows that the Po River Plain is included among areas in Europe that by 2030 shall be affected by water scarcity. In this context, a study was started to select and develop indicators for the management and prevention of Water Scarcity and Drought (WS&D) based on the synergic use of hydrological modelling and Earth Observation data applied at a spatial scale of interest for end-users (250m grid). These indicators shall be better suited for the assessment of WS&D in Italy as well as in other southern European countries. This work presents the development and the application of the TDI (Transpirative Deficit Index) to a study area, within the Po River Plain. TDI is an agricultural drought index based on the transpiration deficit (TDx, calculated as the difference between potential and actual transpiration), computed by the spatially distributed hydrological model IDRAGRA and cumulated over a period of x days. TDx for each day of a specific year is compared to the long-term TDx probability distribution (e.g., over 20-30 years), which is transformed into a standardized normal distribution. The non-exceedance probability of TDx is finally expressed in terms of unit of standard deviation (TDI), following the approach

  17. 3D architecture and structural characterization of the Lima Valley low-angle fault system (Northern Apennines, Italy).

    Clemenzi, L.; Molli, G.; Botti, F.; Ungari, A.; Storti, F.


    The nappe pile of the northern Apennines is characterized, from bottom to top, by metamorphic units (Apuane and Massa), overlain by the anchimetamorphic cover unit (Tuscan Nappe), in turn overlain by remnants of former intraoceanic accretionary wedge (Subligurian and Ligurian units) and by the Epiligurian wedge-top sediments. The upper part of the structural edifice, in several areas, is dismembered and thinned by low-angle extensional fault systems, such as those described in southern Tuscany (Carmignani et al., 1994) and in southernmost Liguria (e.g. Tellaro detachment, Storti, 1995). Here we present another example of such low-angle fault systems, exposed in the Lima valley (northern Tuscany). It consists of a well developed bedding-parallel fault system which appears to be, in turn, affected by superimposed folds and late-stage normal faults (Botti et al., 2010). The original geometry of the low-angle fault system has been reconstructed and superimposed deformations have been restored. The fault system is composed by two first order segments, both of them showing bedding-parallel attitude and top-to-NE kinematics. The uppermost segment causes the tectonic repetition of the pelagic sediments of Scaglia fm. (Upper Cretaceous - Oligocene) and the sandstone of Macigno fm. (Oligocene - Miocene); the lowermost one causes the direct contact of the Macigno fm. on the pelagic carbonate of the Maiolica fm. (Upper Jurassic - Lower Cretaceous), via the elision of the Scaglia fm.. In the central part of the study area, other formations are elided by the lowermost fault segment, giving the direct contact of the Macigno fm. with the Calcare selcifero di Limano fm. (Lower Jurassic). The damage zone of the two main tectonic contacts has been studied in detail to investigate the role of the different lithologies involved. In the Macigno sandstone, a foliated cataclasite developed in the proximity of the fault core, intercalated with smaller lithons of less deformed rock

  18. Comparing results from actual and virtual linear scanlines in fractured sandstones of the Marnoso-Arenacea Formation, Northern Apennines, Italy

    Borsani, Angelo; Balsamo, Fabrizio; Bistacchi, Andrea; Ogata, Kei; Storti, Fabrizio; Fetter, Marcos


    Three-dimensional photogrammetric techniques arecommonly used to generate high-resolution digital outcrop models suitable to complement stratigraphic and structural field studies. This is particularly true for near vertical outcrops were direct data collection is very difficult to perform, provided that the data are reliable. To check whether fracture attribute data acquired from photogrammetric digital outcrop models can be effectively integrate field data, we performed a multisource data acquisition programme on the master joint set affecting the Langhian part of the Marnoso Arenacea Formation, a foredeep siliciclastic turbidite succession widely exposed in the external sector of the Northern Apennines. We selected an about 90 m high vertical cliff in a meander of the Santerno River, which was surveyed by both terrestrial and drone-aided photogrammetry to produce two different digital outcrop models of the same strata. Moreover, field data were collected in the same strata along river bed exposures few hundred meters upstream. Comparison of master joint attributes, namely orientation, spacing and height, collected along linear scanlines in the field and in the two digital outcrop models shows quite comparable results, particularly when FSI (Fracture Spacing Index) values are considered. Sensitivity tests of the impact of the number of data on the statistical results from photogrammetric scanlines, where hundreds of measurements can be collected along each scan line, were also performed. Our results provide further support to the effectiveness of the integration between field and photogrammetrically-obtained structural data to study fracture densities in partially accessible exposures. Given the large data numbers that can be collected in digital outcrop models, once validated in the field, photogrammetric data allow robust statistical analysis to be performed on fracture attributes.

  19. Sale of raw milk in northern Italy: food safety implications and comparison of different analytical methodologies for detection of foodborne pathogens.

    Giacometti, Federica; Serraino, Andrea; Finazzi, Guido; Daminelli, Paolo; Losio, Marina N; Arrigoni, Norma; Piva, Silvia; Florio, Daniela; Riu, Raffaela; Zanoni, Renato G


    The safety of raw milk sold in Northern Italy was investigated in relation to hygiene quality parameters and presence of Salmonella spp., Listeria monocytogenes, thermotolerant Campylobacter, and Verocytotoxin producing Escherichia coli O157:H7. The performance of different analytical methods used-official culture method (ISO), modified Bacteriological Analytical Manual cultural method (mBAM), and polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-was evaluated. The presence of Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis (Map) was investigated only by PCR. All samples met regulations for alkaline phosphatase and inhibitory substance, while 18% and 44.8% of samples collected from vending machines had, respectively, somatic cell count (SCC) >300,000/mL and total bacterial count (TBC) >50,000 CFU/mL. The correlation between hygienic quality parameters in samples collected from bulk tank and vending machines showed a significant increase of TBC in vending machines meaning that raw milk was mishandled during distribution and sale. All pathogens investigated were detected in raw milk sold at vending machines; a total of five samples (5%) had at least one pathogen, of which two were detected by PCR and three by mBAM. None of the samples was positive by cultural ISO methods. Even if the comparison of analytical methods showed that none performs significantly better than the others, testing a higher volume of milk (25 versus 210 mL) affects significantly the detection rate of pathogens. Three samples (3%) were positive for Map, suggesting that raw milk is a significant source of Map exposure for consumers. The observed TBC increase and the detection of several pathogenic bacteria pose questions on the safety of raw milk; the use of ISO seems inefficient in detecting a low contamination level of pathogens in milk and consequently not appropriate as official method for testing. In order to ensure consumer's safety, a new approach for the raw milk chain is required.

  20. Boosting Blue Growth in a Mild Sea: Analysis of the Synergies Produced by a Multi-Purpose Offshore Installation in the Northern Adriatic, Italy

    Barbara Zanuttigh


    Full Text Available In the near future, the oceans will be subjected to a massive development of marine infrastructures, including offshore wind, tidal and wave energy farms and constructions for marine aquaculture. The development of these facilities will unavoidably exert environmental pressures on marine ecosystems. It is therefore crucial that the economic costs, the use of marine space and the environmental impacts of these activities remain within acceptable limits. Moreover, the installation of arrays of wave energy devices is still far from being economically feasible due to many combined aspects, such as immature technologies for energy conversion, local energy storage and moorings. Therefore, multi-purpose solutions combining renewable energy from the sea (wind, wave, tide, aquaculture and transportation facilities can be considered as a challenging, yet advantageous, way to boost blue growth. This would be due to the sharing of the costs of installation and using the produced energy locally to feed the different functionalities and optimizing marine spatial planning. This paper focuses on the synergies that may be produced by a multi-purpose offshore installation in a relatively calm sea, i.e., the Northern Adriatic Sea, Italy, and specifically offshore Venice. It analyzes the combination of aquaculture, energy production from wind and waves, and energy storage or transfer. Alternative solutions are evaluated based on specific criteria, including the maturity of the technology, the environmental impact, the induced risks and the costs. Based on expert judgment, the alternatives are ranked and a preliminary layout of the selected multi-purpose installation for the case study is proposed, to further allow the exploitation of the synergies among different functionalities.

  1. Nitrogen budget in a lowland coastal area within the Po River basin (northern Italy): multiple evidences of equilibrium between sources and internal sinks.

    Castaldelli, Giuseppe; Soana, Elisa; Racchetti, Erica; Pierobon, Enrica; Mastrocicco, Micol; Tesini, Enrico; Fano, Elisa Anna; Bartoli, Marco


    Detailed studies on pollutants genesis, path and transformation are needed in agricultural catchments facing coastal areas. Here, loss of nutrients should be minimized in order to protect valuable aquatic ecosystems from eutrophication phenomena. A soil system N budget was calculated for a lowland coastal area, the Po di Volano basin (Po River Delta, Northern Italy), characterized by extremely flat topography and fine soil texture and bordering a network of lagoon ecosystems. Main features of this area are the scarce relevance of livestock farming, the intense agriculture, mainly sustained by chemical fertilizers, and the developed network of artificial canals with long water residence time. Average nitrogen input exceeds output terms by ~60 kg N ha(-1) year(-1), a relatively small amount if compared to sub-basins of the same hydrological system. Analysis of dissolved inorganic nitrogen in groundwater suggests limited vertical loss and no accumulation of this element, while a nitrogen mass balance in surface waters indicates a net and significant removal within the watershed. Our data provide multiple evidences of efficient control of the nitrogen excess in this geographical area and we speculate that denitrification in soil and in the secondary drainage system performs this ecosystemic function. Additionally, the significant difference between nitrogen input and nitrogen output loads associated to the irrigation system, which is fed by the N-rich Po River, suggests that this basin metabolizes part of the nitrogen excess produced upstream. The traditionally absent livestock farming practices and consequent low use of manure as fertilizer pose the risk of excess soil mineralization and progressive loss of denitrification capacity in this area.

  2. Mycotoxin occurrence in maize produced in Northern Italy over the years 2009–2011: focus on the role of crop related factors



    Full Text Available The occurrence of mycotoxins associated with Fusarium spp. and Aspergillus flavus in Northern Italy, and the role of cropping systems, were investigated on 140 field samples collected over the years 2009–2011. Samples were analysed for fumonisins B1 and B2 (FBs, aflatoxins B1, B2, G1 and G2 (AFs, deoxynivalenol (DON and zearalenone (ZEN using validated analytical methods. Information on: maize hybrid, preceding crop, tillage applied, mineral nutrition, pest and disease control, severity of European Corn Borer (ECB attack, sowing and harvesting dates, kernel moisture at harvesting and longitude of the sampled province, were also collected. During this period there were distinct differences in FBs and AFs concentrations between years and geographic origins, and very low contamination with DON and ZEN was always found. The incidence of AFs exceeded 75% across all samples, and was almost 100% for FBs. The meteorological trends were quite different in the 3 years surveyed. 2009 was the coldest in June and the warmest in August, 2010 the most humid, and in 2011 cold weather occurred during flowering and dry conditions during ripening. The run of a logistic equation with the backward stepwise approach selected three parameters, (seeding week, ECB severity and longitude of sampling province to predict AFB1 contamination and four parameters (year, sowing week, ECB severity and longitude of sampling province to predict FB contamination. The internal validation gave good results, with 76% correct predictions. The probability of harvesting maize with more than 5 µg kg-1 of AFB1 varied between 86 and 5%, and the probability of harvesting maize with more than 4,000 µg kg-1 of FBs varied between 81 and 2%, respectively, for conducive and non-conducive environments. Therefore, considerable variability was found even if a limited area and only 3 years were considered.

  3. A functional entity approach to predict soil erosion processes in a small Plio-Pleistocene Mediterranean catchment in Northern Chianti, Italy

    Märker, Michael; Pelacani, Samanta; Schröder, Boris


    In this paper we evaluate different methods to predict soil erosion processes. We derived different layers of predictor variables for the study area in the Northern Chianti, Italy, describing the soil-lithologic complex, land use, and topographic characteristics. For a subcatchment of the Orme River, we mapped erosion processes by interpreting aerial photographs and field observations. These were classified as erosional response units (ERU), i.e. spatial areas of homogeneous erosion processes. The ERU were used as the response variable in the soil erosion modelling process. We applied two models i) bootstrap aggregation (Random Forest: RF), and ii) stochastic gradient boosting (TreeNet: TN) to predict the potential spatial distribution of erosion processes for the entire Orme River catchment. The models are statistically evaluated using training data and a set of performance parameters such as the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC), Cohen's Kappa, and pseudo R2. Variable importance and response curves provide further insight into controlling factors of erosion. Both models provided good performance in terms of classification and calibration; however, TN outperformed RF. Similar classes such as active and inactive landslides can be discriminated and well interpreted by considering response curves and relative variable importance. The spatial distribution of the predicted erosion susceptibilities generally follows topographic constraints and is similar for both models. Hence, the model-based delineation of ERU on the basis of soil and terrain information is a valuable tool in geomorphology; it provides insights into factors controlling erosion processes and may allow the extrapolation and prediction of erosion processes in unsurveyed areas.

  4. New seismo-stratigraphic data of the Volturno Basin (northern Campania, Tyrrhenian margin, southern Italy: implications for tectono-stratigraphy of the Campania and Latium sedimentary basins

    Ennio Marsella


    Full Text Available A geological section of the Volturno Basin (northern Campania, continental margin, Italy has been constructed based on new multi-channel seismic data, to show the stratigraphic relationships between the filling in the Quaternary basin and the Meso-Cenozoic acoustic basement. The new seismic sections presented here outline the underlying structures of the basin and their relationships to the filling in the Quaternary basin. Deep exploration wells in Campania and Latium on the Tyrrhenian margin have gathered litho-stratigraphic and commercial multi-channel seismic data that can be used for better integration of the geological data for the area under study. The trending of the seismic units is controlled by the Massico Structural High, which forms the boundary of the Volturno Basin towards the north-west. This produces a geometry that is characteristic of a fan complex, with NE-SW trending. This qualitative calibration of the seismic sequences that fill the sedimentary basin was carried out through the litho-stratigraphic data of the «Castelvolturno 2» well, which highlights the pyroclastic layers and conglomeratic strata of the lagoon and delta environments as they evolve upwards towards marine sediments. Seismo-stratigraphic analysis shows the complex depositional geometries of the filling in the Volturno Basin, which overlie the Meso-Cenozoic carbonatic basement and the related flysch deposits. Coupled with regional geological evidence, the data interpretation here suggests that the Volturno Basin represents a half-graben structure that is characterized by down-thrown blocks along normal faults.

  5. Nitrogen removal and its determinants in hybrid Populus clones for bioenergy plantations after two biennial rotations in two temperate sites in northern Italy

    Paris P


    Full Text Available The sustainability of bioenergy coppice plantations is strongly affected by the Nitrogen (N balance, whose removal is very high due to the frequent harvest of large quantities of biomass composed of small-sized shoots. Poplar bioenergy coppice plantations could have a Nitrogen removal comparable to herbaceous crops. In this study, five hybrid poplar genotypes (“AF2”, “AF6”, “Monviso”, “83.148.041”, “I214” were compared for tree morphological traits related to yield, N removal in the harvested biomass and Nitrogen wood concentration (N% after two biennial coppice rotations in two experimental plantations located in northern Italy. N removal was primarily influenced by biomass production, and linear positive relationships between biomass yield and N removal were established. N removal also varied greatly among genotypes due to clonal differences in yield and in N%, in relation to significant differences among clones for their branching and sprouting habits. In the first rotation, branchiness was positively correlated to N% with a significant coefficient of determination (R2=0.813, while at the end of the second rotation it was also significantly correlated to the shoots per stool ratio (R2=0.804. “Monviso” and “83.148.041” were the clones showing the highest yield, but also a high N% associated to an high level of branchiness and shoots per stool ratio. Our results highlight that poplar genotype selection for sustainable N management should be aimed at genotypes with low wood N concentration, coupling high yield with low branching and sprouting habits as in the case of the clone “AF2”.




    Full Text Available This work reconstructs a now completely eroded late Eocene to earliest Oligocene carbonate factory of Northern Italy, through the analysis of a carbonate deep-water-fan sequence (Ternate-Travedona Formation and the limestone detritus dispersed into the late Oligocene clastic-wedge of the Gonfolite Lombarda Group. Textural characteristics and skeletal assemblages of the Gonfolite pebbles were studied and compared to those of the Ternate-Travedona Formation. The same skeletal assemblage and the same taxa were found in samples from both areas, suggesting their common origin. Whereas the Ternate-Travedona Formation skeletal grains were reworked during transport, the Gonfolite Lombarda Group pure-limestone pebbles are pristine fragments of the carbonate platform, that was uplifted and eroded from the late Eocene to the early Oligocene. Using both these sources of information it was possible to reconstruct the late Eocene environment and its facies distribution. The areas undergoing high hydrodynamic energy were dominated by free-living coralline-algal branches, rhodoliths and larger thick-tested benthic foraminifera. A coralline framework, associated with thin-tested benthic foraminifera and boxwork rhodoliths, was present in slightly deeper and sheltered environments. Episodic debris flows, mainly triggered by river floods, supplied the sub-marine fan of the Ternate-Travedona Formation. These events were able to down-cut through the narrow platform and rip off large fragments of the substrate. River runoff probably also supplied large quantities of organic matter, leading to local oxygen-depletion and preservation of organic matter. The combined stressful effects of bottom instability and riverine discharge probably excluded corals from the association. The integrated study of the Ternate-Travedona Formation, and of the limestone pebbles in the Gonfolite Group, have enabled the reconstruction of this otherwise lost Eocene carbonate factory.

  7. Short communication: Prevalence of Staphylococcus aureus and methicillin-resistant S. aureus in bulk tank milk from dairy goat farms in Northern Italy.

    Cortimiglia, C; Bianchini, V; Franco, A; Caprioli, A; Battisti, A; Colombo, L; Stradiotto, K; Vezzoli, F; Luini, M


    Staphylococcus aureus is regarded as a leading cause of mastitis in goats. However, few data are available on the presence of methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) in this species. The aim of this study was to assess the prevalence of S. aureus and MRSA in bulk tank milk samples from dairy goat farms in Northern Italy. Eighty-five out of 197 samples (43.1%) tested positive for S. aureus with counts ranging from 10 to more than 1.5 × 10(4) cfu/mL. The MRSA was screened by both direct plating followed by a disk diffusion test to evaluate methicillin resistance and a selective enrichment method. Methicillin-resistance was confirmed by mecA-specific PCR. Methicillin-resistant S. aureus was identified in 4 samples (2.0%) and multilocus sequence typing (MLST) showed the presence of livestock-associated MRSA belonging to lineages ST398 (n = 3) and ST1 (n = 1). In one case we demonstrated that the same MRSA strain was able to persist over time on the farm, being isolated from both bulk tank milk and the udder of 3 goats 1 yr after the first isolation. The high prevalence of S. aureus-positive herds detected in this study and the presence of MRSA strains belonging to livestock-associated genotypes is of concern, and represents a novel finding in the Italian dairy goat production system. The application of stringent measures for the control of S. aureus mastitis at the farm level seems appropriate to reduce the economic losses, and to minimize the risk of foodborne illness and the transmission of MRSA to humans by occupational exposure. Copyright © 2015 American Dairy Science Association. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Time-lapse electrical resistivity imaging of the thermally affected zone of a Borehole Thermal Energy Storage system near Torino (Northern Italy)

    Giordano, N.; Arato, A.; Comina, C.; Mandrone, G.


    A Borehole Thermal Energy Storage living lab was built up nearby Torino (Northern Italy). This living lab aims at testing the ability of the alluvial deposits of the north-western Po Plain to store the thermal energy collected by solar thermal panels and the efficiency of energy storage systems in this climatic context. Different monitoring approaches have been tested and analyzed since the start of the thermal injection in April 2014. Underground temperature monitoring is constantly undertaken by means of several temperature sensors located along the borehole heat exchangers and within the hydraulic circuit. Nevertheless, this can provide only pointwise information about underground temperature distribution. For this reason, a geophysical approach is proposed in order to image the thermally affected zone (TAZ) caused by the heat injection: surface electrical resistivity measurements were carried out with this purpose. In the present paper, results of time-lapse acquisitions during a heating day are reported with the aim of imaging the thermal plume evolution within the subsoil. Resistivity data, calibrated on local temperature measurements, have shown their potentiality in imaging the heated plume of the system and depicting its evolution throughout the day. Different types of data processing were adopted in order to face issues mainly related to a highly urbanized environment. The use of apparent resistivity proved to be in valid agreement with the results of different inversion approaches. The inversion processes did not significantly improve the qualitative and quantitative TAZ imaging in comparison to the pseudo-sections. This suggested the usefulness of apparent resistivity data alone for a rough monitoring of TAZ in this kind of applications.

  9. Canopy-scale flux measurements and bottom-up emission estimates of volatile organic compounds from a mixed oak and hornbeam forest in northern Italy

    W. J. F. Acton


    Full Text Available This paper reports the fluxes and mixing ratios of biogenically emitted volatile organic compounds (BVOCs 4 m above a mixed oak and hornbeam forest in northern Italy. Fluxes of methanol, acetaldehyde, isoprene, methyl vinyl ketone + methacrolein, methyl ethyl ketone and monoterpenes were obtained using both a proton transfer reaction-mass spectrometer (PTR-MS and a proton transfer reaction-time of flight-mass spectrometer (PTR-ToF-MS together with the methods of virtual disjunct eddy covariance (PTR-MS and eddy covariance (PTR-ToF-MS. Isoprene was the dominant emitted compound with a mean day-time flux of 1.9 mg m-2 h-1. Mixing ratios, recorded 4 m above the canopy, were dominated by methanol with a mean value of 6.2 ppbv over the 28 day measurement period. Comparison of isoprene fluxes calculated using the PTR-MS and PTR-ToF-MS showed very good agreement while comparison of the monoterpene fluxes suggested a slight over estimation of the flux by the PTR-MS. A basal isoprene emission rate for the forest of 1.7 mg m-2 h-1 was calculated using the MEGAN isoprene emissions algorithms (Guenther et al., 2006. A detailed tree species distribution map for the site enabled the leaf-level emissions of isoprene and monoterpenes recorded using GC-MS to be scaled up to produce a "bottom-up" canopy-scale flux. This was compared with the "top-down" canopy-scale flux obtained by measurements. For monoterpenes, the two estimates were closely correlated and this correlation improved when the plant species composition in the individual flux footprint was taken into account. However, the bottom-up approach significantly underestimated the isoprene flux, compared with the top-down measurements, suggesting that the leaf-level measurements were not representative of actual emission rates.

  10. Multidisciplinary research for the safe fruition of an active geosite: the Salse di Nirano mud volcanoes (Northern Apennines, Italy)

    Coratza, Paola; Albarello, Dario; Cipriani, Anna; Cantucci, Barbara; Castaldini, Doriano; Conventi, Marzia; Dadomo, Andrea; De Nardo, Maria Teresa; Macini, Paolo; Martinelli, Giovanni; Mesini, Ezio; Papazzoni, Cesare Andrea; Quartieri, Simona; Ricci, Tullio; Santagata, Tommaso; Sciarra, Alessandra; Vezzalini, Giovanna


    Mud volcanoes are emissions of cold mud due to the ascent to the surface of salty and muddy waters mixed with gaseous (methane) and, in minor part, fluid hydrocarbons (petroleum veils) along faults and fractures. In the Northern Apennines mud volcanoes are closely linked to the active tectonic compression associated with thrusts of regional importance. They are mostly cone-shaped and show variable geometry and size, ranging from one to few metres, and are located in 19 sites in the northwestern part of the Apennines. Particularly noteworthy is the Nirano mud volcano field, located in the Fiorano Modenese district, which, with a surface area of approximately 75,000 m2, is one of the best developed and largest mud volcano field of the entire Italian territory and among the largest in Europe; it is thus protected as natural reserve (Salse di Nirano) since 1982. The Nirano mud volcanoes are found at the bottom of an elliptical depression, interpreted as a collapse-like structure (caldera) that may have developed in response to the deflation of a shallow mud chamber triggered by several ejections and evacuation of fluid sediments. There are several individual or multiple cones within the field of the mud volcanoes of Nirano, with a rather discontinuous activity; apparatuses become dormant or even extinct whereas new vents can appear in other spots. In the research here presented about 50 vents have been mapped and few of them appeared in May 2016. The mud volcanoes of the region have been known since a long time and have always aroused great interest due to their outstanding scenic value, and, in the past the mud volcano emissions have been used in many ways. Beside their cultural value, the mud volcanoes of the study area represent a tourist attractiveness as testified by the increasing number of visitors (e.g. about 70,000 visitors in 2015 in the Salse di Nirano Natural Reserve). Numerous initiatives, targeted at various potential users, have been developed in the

  11. New insights into the evolution of central Tyrrhenian margin of Italy (northern Latium off-shore area): evidences and constraints from seismic data interpretation

    Buttinelli, M.; Vico, G.; Scrocca, D.; Petracchini, L.; de Rita, D.


    A revision of the available seismic reflection survey in the off-shore part of the northern Latium (central Italy) has been accomplished to better understand the deep structural setting of this area. Previous works performed in the last twenty years have compared the on-shore outcrops of cretaceous flyschoid and Plio-Pleistocene marine sedimentary units with shallow off-shore seismic reflection data (1/1,5 msec twt maximum), while the deep structural setting of calcareous basement of Tuscan units have been poorly analysed. The stratigraphy of the area is well constrained by a deep well, which goes through the entire sedimentary succession. Other geological constraints are provided by a discrete amount of deep wells in the on-shore part of the study area and by a voluminous bibliography, in which many authors tried to correlate this units to the tectonic units described in the central and northern part of the Apennines. The stratigraphy could be divided in four main groups of units; from top to bottom: Plio-Pleistocene marine deposits, Cretaceous Liguride deep-water units, Jurassic Tuscan pelagic deposits, and a Triassic evaporitic formation. Even volcanic intrusive bodies (Tolfa-Ceriti-Manziana dome complexes) are present in the on-shore part. The emplacement of this bodies generally caused a further overprint on the different deformation phases that affected this area. Seismic reflection data analysis show that this area was affected by at least three deformational phases. After the deposition of the Tuscan and Liguride sedimentary units, the area underwent: i) an initial compressional phase associated to the Alps-Northern Apennine chain build up, with formation of compressional features as regional thrusts, back-thrusts and fold structures. These structures are clearly visible in the deep Tuscan and Liguride units setting; ii) a successive extensional deformation phase related to the spreading of the Tyrrhenian Sea, starting in the late Miocene times. This caused

  12. Two look-alike dasycladalean algae: Clypeina isabellae masse, Bucur, Virgone & Delmasso, 1999 from the Berriasian of Sardinia (Italy and Clypeina loferensis sp. N. from the upper Jurassic of the Northern Calcareous Alps (Austria

    Schlagintweit Felix


    Full Text Available New material from the Berriasian of eastern Sardinia, Italy, and from the NW of Sardinia published by PECORINI in 1972 as 'Clypeina sp. A', allows a better characterization and an emended diagnosis of Clypeina isabellae MASSE et al., 1999 from the Berriasian of SW France. Another morphologically somehow similar Clypeina species from the Upper Jurassic of the Northern Calcareous Alps of Austria is described as Clypeina loferensis n. sp. Remarks on the genera Clypeina MICHELIN and Hamulusella ELLIOTT, a Clypeina-type dasycladalean alga with proximal bulged laterals, and Clypeina jurassica-sulcata are also provided.

  13. Plio-Quaternary tectonic evolution of the Northern Apennines thrust fronts along the Bologna-Ferrara section (Po Plain, Italy), based on geological observations and analogue modelling: seismotectonic implications

    G. Toscani; P. Burrato; D. Di Bucci; Seno, S; Valensise, G.


    The outermost thrust fronts of the Northern Apennines fold-and-thrust belt (Italy) are buried under a thick clastic cover that fills the Po Plain basin (Fig. 1), and have been studied by means of seismic sections and deep well logs acquired for oil exploration purposes (e.g. PIERI & GROPPI,1981). These data show a system of NE-verging blind thrusts and folds that controlled the deposition of very thick syntectonic sedimentary wedges, with the Plio-Quaternary sequence locally up to 7-8 km thi...

  14. Gneisses (Serizzi and Beole) of the Verbano-Cusio-Ossola district (Piedmont, Northern Italy): possible candidates for the designation of "Global Heritage Stone province"

    Antonella Dino, Giovanna; Borghi, Alessandro; Cavallo, Alessandro; Primavori, Piero


    The Verbano-Cusio-Ossola quarrying district (Piedmont, northern Italy) produces many different ornamental stones (granites, gneisses, marbles): two really important categories are represented by Serizzo and Beola gneisses. Several varieties of Serizzo and Beola crop out in the upper and middle Ossola Valley: Serizzo derives from the Antigorio, Monte Leone and Monte Rosa Penninic Units, whereas Beola from the Monte Leone, Orselina-Moncucco-Isorno and Monte Rosa Penninic Units, as well from the Fobello-Rimella schists (Austroalpine). The Serizzo, represented by a group of foliated granitoid orthogneisses (Serizzo Antigorio, Serizzo Formazza, Serizzo Sempione and Serizzo Monte Rosa varieties), is probably the most important and extensively exploited ornamental stones from the VCO province (about 70% of the VCO stone production). The quarries are mostly concentrated in the Antigorio and Formazza valleys, where the Antigorio nappe has a sub-horizontal attitude and reaches its greatest thickness (up to 1000 m). This stone was largely used to produce columns since the end of XV century (e.g. the old Ospedale Maggiore in Milano, now University of Milano) and later on it was replaced with granites. It was also used in the building structure of the Duomo di Milano, for the plinth and the piers. Nowadays, thanks to its good wear resistance and low cost, it is mainly used in polished slabs for paving: a recent application is the Frankfurt airport floor. Beola is the name of a group of heterogeneous orthogneisses with mylonitic foliation and strong mineralogical lineation (Beola Grigia, Bianca, Ghiandonata, Striata varieties), easy to split into thin slabs with hammer and chisel, occurring in the middle Ossola Valley, between Vogogna and Montecrestese. The quarries of Beola are probably the oldest of the Ossola Valley, although the precise period in which the stone started to be exported is unknown. The Beola trade probably started at the end of the XIII century, with the

  15. Comparing growth rate in a mixed plantation (walnut, poplar and nurse trees with different planting designs: results from an experimental plantation in northern Italy

    Francesco Pelleri


    Full Text Available 800x600 Results of a mixed plantation with poplar, walnut and nurse trees established in winter 2003 in Northern Italy, are reported. Main tree species (poplar and walnut were planted according to a rectangular design (10 x 11m, with different spacings and alternate lines. The experimental trial was carried out to verify the following working hypotheses: (i possibility to combine main trees with different growth levels (common walnut, hybrid walnut, and different poplar clones and test two different poplar and walnut spacings (5.0 and 7.4 m in the same plantation; (ii opportunity to reduce cultivation’s workload, in comparison with poplar monoculture, using mixtures with different poplar clones and N-fixing nurse trees; (iii verifying the growth pattern of two new poplar clones in comparison with the traditional clones cultivated for different purposes in Italy.The use of different valuable crop trees’ mixtures intercropped with nurse trees and shrubs (including N-fixing trees allows to decrease the cultivation’s workload. In fact, a heavy reduction of cultural practices - fertilizers, weed control, irrigation and pesticides applications (-61% are the main concurrent, supplementary benefits. The best growth performances (DBH and tree height, associated with the higher competition towards walnuts, were recorded with the new clones Lena and Neva in comparison with the I214 and Villafranca. The closer spacing (5 m between poplar and walnut trees was found to be unsuited to get merchantable poplars sized 30 cm without developing a heavy competition towards walnut trees. The wider spacing (7.4 m resulted vice versa suitable to get poplar trees sized as requested by veneer factories and to maintain an acceptable competitive level with walnut. Within this plantation design, a shorter rotation (8 yrs is needed for Lena and Neva clones in comparison with I214 and Villafranca (10 yrs. Walnut intercropped with poplar showed cone-shaped crowns, light

  16. Monitoring the Rapid-Moving Reactivation of Earth Flows by Means of GB-InSAR: The April 2013 Capriglio Landslide (Northern Appennines, Italy

    Federica Bardi


    Full Text Available This paper presents the main results of the GB-InSAR (ground based interferometric synthetic aperture radar monitoring of the Capriglio landslide (Northern Apennines, Emilia Romagna Region, Italy, activated on 6 April 2013. The landslide, triggered by prolonged rainfall, is constituted by two main adjacent enlarging bodies with a roto-translational kinematics. They activated in sequence and subsequently joined into a large earth flow, channelizing downstream of the Bardea Creek, for a total length of about 3600 m. The displacement rate of this combined mass was quite high, so that the landslide toe evolved with velocities of several tens of meters per day (with peaks of 70–80 m/day in the first month, and of several meters per day (with peaks of 13–14 m/day from early May to mid-July 2013. In the crown area, the landslide completely destroyed a 450 m sector of provincial roadway S.P. 101, and its retrogression tendency exposed the villages of Capriglio and Pianestolla, located in the upper watershed area of the Bardea Creek, to great danger. Furthermore, the advancing toe seriously threatened the Antria bridge, representing the “Massese” provincial roadway S.P. 665R transect over the Bardea Creek, the only strategic roadway left able to connect the above-mentioned villages. With the final aim of supporting local authorities in the hazard assessment and risk management during the emergency phase, on 4 May 2013 aerial optical surveys were conducted to accurately map the landslide extension and evolution. Moreover, a GB-InSAR monitoring campaign was started in order to assess displacements of the whole landslide area. The versatility and flexibility of the GB-InSAR sensors allowed acquiring data with two different configurations, designed and set up to continuously retrieve information on the landslide movement rates (both in its upper slow-moving sectors and in its fast-moving toe. The first acquisition mode revealed that the Capriglio and

  17. Investigating source directivity for the 2012 Ml5.9 Emilia (Northern Italy) earthquake by jointly using High-rate GPS and Strong motion data

    Avallone, A.; Herrero, A.; Latorre, D.; Rovelli, A.; D'Anastasio, E.


    On May, 20th 2012, the Ferrara and Modena provinces (Emilia Romagna, Northern Italy) were struck by a moderate magnitude earthquake (Ml 5.9). The focal mechanism is consistent with a ~E-W-striking thrust fault. The mainshock was recorded by 29 high-rate sampling (1-Hz) continuous GPS (HRGPS) stations belonging to scientific or commercial networks and by 55 strong motion (SM) stations belonging to INGV (Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia) and RAN (Rete Accelerometrica Nazionale) networks, respectively. The spatial distribution of both HRGPS and SM stations with respect to the mainshock location allows a satisfactory azimuthal coverage of the area. To investigate directivity effects during the mainshock occurrence, we analyze the spatial variation of the peak ground displacement (PGD) measured either for HRGPS or SM sites, using different methods. For each HRGPS and SM site, we rotated the horizontal time series to the azimuth direction and we estimated the GPS-related and the SM-related peak ground displacement (G-PGD and S-PGD, respectively) retrieved by transverse component. However, in contrast to GPS displacements, the double integration of the SM data can be affected by the presence of drifts and, thus, they have to be corrected by quasi-manual procedures. To more properly compare the G-PGDs to the S-PGDs, we used the response spectrum. A response spectrum is simply the response of a series of oscillators of varying natural frequency, that are forced into motion by the same input. The asymptotic value of the displacement response spectrum is the peak ground displacement. Thus, for each HRGPS and SM site, we computed the value of this asymptotic trend (G-PGDrs and S-PGDrs, respectively). This method allows simple automatic procedures. The consistency of the PGDs derived from HRGPS and SM is also evaluated for sites where the two instruments are collocated. The PGDs obtained by the two different methods and the two different data types suggest a

  18. Substantial decline of polychlorinated biphenyls serum levels 10years after public health interventions in a population living near a contaminated site in Northern Italy.

    Magoni, Michele; Donato, Francesco; Speziani, Fabrizio; Leonardi, Lucia; Orizio, Grazia; Scarcella, Carmelo; Gaia, Alice; Apostoli, Pietro


    Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are persistent pollutants classified among endocrine disruptors and human carcinogens. In an urban area in Northern Italy (Brescia), a chemical factory producing PCBs from 1938 to 1984 caused soil and food pollution. Since the discovering of the environmental pollution in the area in 2001, various public health interventions have been implemented to avoid human contamination. Two independent surveys were carried out in 2003 and 2013 using the same study design and methods. A random sample of the adult general population living in four areas of the town with different soil contamination level was enrolled in both surveys. Investigation included serum levels of 24 PCB congeners and of other common clinical-chemical parameters and questions about residential and occupational history as well as current and past diet and consumption of locally produced food. 537 subjects were tested in the 2003 and 488 in the 2013 survey. Total PCB serum levels showed a strong correlation with age (Spearman r=0.71 in 2003 and r=0.80 in 2013), but not with gender. Consumers of food produced in the most polluted area had higher total PCB serum levels (median 15.6 and 4.7ng/ml in 2003 and 2013, respectively) than non-consumers (4.1 and 2.3ng/ml) and consumers of food produced in non-polluted areas (6.5 and 1.9ng/ml), with increasing trend of PCB serum levels with cumulative local food intake. PCB serum levels from 2003 to 2013 survey declined by around half in all age groups, especially among the youngest people. The total PCB reduction was found to be due to a combination of a birth cohort effect (-41% every 10years) and survey period effect (-18% in 2013 versus 2003), with medium chlorinated CB congeners showing the most relevant reduction (-30%) between the two surveys. High chlorinated CBs were more strongly associated with birth cohort (-46% every 10years): in the 2013 survey they represented 58% of total PCBs in 60-79years old while they were 37

  19. An assessment of urban heat island effect adopting urban parameterizations in COSMO-CLM simulations over big cities in Northern Italy

    Montesarchio, Myriam; Rianna, Guido; Mercogliano, Paola; Castellari, Sergio; Schiano, Pasquale


    In Europe, about 80% of people live in urban areas, which most of them can be particularly vulnerable to climate impacts (e.g. high air temperatures along with heat waves, flooding due to intense precipitation events, water scarcity and droughts). In fact, the density of people and assets within relatively small geographic areas, such as an urban settlements, mean more risk exposure than in rural areas. Therefore, reliable numerical climate models are needed for elaborating climate risk assessment at urban scale. These models must take into account the effects of the complex three-dimensional structure of urban settlements, combined with the mixture of surface types with contrasting radiative, thermal and moisture characteristics. In this respect, previous studies (e.g. Trusilova et al., 2013) have already assessed the importance to consider urban properties in very high resolution regional climate modeling to better reproduce the features of urban climate, especially in terms of urban heat island effect. In this work, two different configurations of the regional climate model COSMO-CLM at the horizontal resolution of 0.02° (about 2.2km), one including urban parameterization scheme and another without including them, have been applied in order to perform two different climate simulations covering the entire northern Italy. In particular, the present study is focused on large urban settlements such as Milan and Turin. Due to high computational cost required to run very high resolution simulations, the results of the two simulations have been compared over a period of ten years, from 1980 to 1989. Preliminary results indicate that the modification of climate conditions, due to the presence of urban areas, is present mainly in the areas covered by big cities and surrounding them, or rather the presence of urban areas induces modification mainly in their local climate. Other evidences are that the simulation including urban parameterization scheme shows, in general

  20. The thick-bedded tail of turbidite thickness distribution as a proxy for flow confinement: Examples from tertiary basins of central and northern Apennines (Italy)

    Marini, Mattia; Felletti, Fabrizio; Milli, Salvatore; Patacci, Marco


    This study reviews the thickness statistics of non-channelized turbidites from four tertiary basins of Central-Northern Apennines (Italy), where bed geometry and sedimentary character have been previously assessed. Though very different in terms of size and, arguably, character of feeder system, these basins share a common stratigraphic evolution consisting in transition from an early ponded to a late unconfined setting of deposition. Based on comparison of thickness subsets from diverse locations and stratigraphic heights within the studied turbidite fills, this paper seeks to answer the following questions: i) how data collection procedures and field operational constraints (e.g. measure location, outcrop quality, use of thicknesses data from single vs. multiple correlative sections, stratigraphic thickness of the study interval) can affect statistics of sample data? ii) how depositional controls of confined vs. unconfined turbidite basins can result in different thickness-frequency distributions?; and iii) is there in thickness statistics a 'flow confinement' signature which can be used to distinguish between confined and unconfined turbidites? Results suggest that: i) best practices of data collection are crucial to a meaningful interpretation of sample data statistics, especially in presence of stratigraphic and spatial trends of turbidite bed thickness; ii) a systematic bias against cm-thick Tcd Bouma sequence turbidites exists in sample data, which can result in the low-end tail of empirical thickness-frequency distributions to depart significantly from the actual distribution of turbidite thickness; and iii) thickness statistics of beds starting with a basal Ta/Tb Bouma division bear a coherent relationship to the transition from ponded to unconfined depositional settings, consisting in reduction of variance and mean and, consequently, parameters, or even type, of best fit model distribution. This research highlights the role of flow stripping, sediment by

  1. Abundance of questing ticks and molecular evidence for pathogens in ticks in three parks of Emilia-Romagna region of Northern Italy

    Sara Aureli


    Full Text Available Introduction and objective. Infectious and parasitic diseases transmitted by ticks, such as Lyme diseases, granulocytic anaplasmosis and piroplasmosis, have been frequently reported in Europe, with increasing attention to them as an emerging zoonotic problem. The presented study was performed to assess the distribution and the density of questing ticks in three regional parks of Emilia-Romagna region of Northern Italy, and to seek molecular evidence of potential human pathogens in tick populations. Materials and Methods. In the period April-October 2010, 8,139 questing ticks were collected: 6,734 larvae, 1,344 nymphs and only a few adults – 28 females and 33 males. The abundance of[i] Ixodes ricinus[/i] questing ticks was compared among different sampling sites and related to microclimate parameters. 1,544 out of 8,139 ticks were examined for the presence of pathogens: PCR was used to detect piroplasms DNA and Real time Taqman PCR for [i]Anaplasma phagocytophilum[/i] and [i]Borrelia burgdorferi[/i] s.l. Results. The predominant species was [i]I. ricinus[/i] (overall abundance 1,075.9/100 m[sup]2[/sup] ; more rarely, [i]Dermacentor marginatus[/i] (n = 37 – 0.45%, [i]Scaphixodes frontalis[/i] (n = 13 – 0.16%, [i]Hyalomma[/i] spp. (n = 6 – 0.07% and [i]Ixodes acuminatus[/i] (n = 3 – 0.04% were also found. 28 out of 324 (8.6% samples of ticks were PCR-positive for piroplasm DNA. 11 amplicons of 18S rRNA gene were identical to each other and had 100% identity with[i] Babesia[/i] EU1 ([i]Babesia venatorum[/i] using BLAST analysis. Real time Taqman PCR gave positive results for [i]A. phagocytophilum[/i] in 23 out of 292 samples (7.9%, and for [i]B. burgdorferi[/i] s.l. in 78 out of 292 samples (26.7%. [i]I. ricinu[/i]s was the only species found positive for pathogens by molecular analysis; 16 tick samples were co-infected with at least 2 pathogens. Discussion. The peak of nymph presence was in May, and the higher prevalence of pathogens

  2. Characteristics and major sources of carbonaceous aerosols in PM2.5 in Emilia Romagna Region (Northern Italy) from four-year observations

    Pietrogrande, Maria Chiara, E-mail: [Department of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Ferrara, Via Fossato di Mortara 17/19, I-44100 Ferrara (Italy); Bacco, Dimitri [Department of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Ferrara, Via Fossato di Mortara 17/19, I-44100 Ferrara (Italy); Regional Agency for Prevention and Environment—ARPA, Emilia-Romagna (Italy); Ferrari, Silvia; Ricciardelli, Isabella; Scotto, Fabiana; Trentini, Arianna [Regional Agency for Prevention and Environment—ARPA, Emilia-Romagna (Italy); Visentin, Marco [Department of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Ferrara, Via Fossato di Mortara 17/19, I-44100 Ferrara (Italy)


    The concentrations of organic and elemental carbon in PM{sub 2.5} aerosol samples were measured in two sites of Emilia Romagna (Po Valley, Northern Italy) in eight campaigns during different seasons from 2011 to 2014. Strong seasonality was observed with the highest OC concentrations during the cold periods (≈ 5.5 μg m{sup −3}) and the lowest in the warm months (≈ 2.7 μg m{sup −3}) as well as with higher EC levels in fall/winter (≈ 1.4 μg m{sup −3}) in comparison with spring/summer (≈ 0.6 μg m{sup −3}). Concerning spatial variability, there were no statistically significant difference (p < 0.05) between OC concentrations at the two sampling sites in each campaign, while the EC values were nearly twofold higher levels at the urban site than those at the rural one. Specific molecular markers were investigated to attempt the basic apportionment of OC by discriminating between the main emission sources of primary OC, such as fossil fuels burning – including traffic vehicle emission – residential wood burning, and bio-aerosol released from plants and microorganisms, and the atmospheric photo-oxidation processes generating OC{sub sec}. The investigated markers were low-molecular-weight carboxylic acids – to describe the contribution of secondary organic aerosol – anhydrosugars – to quantify primary emissions from biomass burning – bio-sugars – to qualitatively estimate biogenic sources – and Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons – to differentiate among different combustion emissions. Using the levoglucosan tracer method, contribution of wood smoke to atmospheric OC concentration was computed. Wood burning accounts for 33% of OC in fall/winter and for 3% in spring/summer. A clear seasonal trend is also observed for the impact of secondary processes with higher contribution in the warm seasons (≈ 63%) in comparison with that in colder months (≈ 33%), that is consistent with enhanced solar radiation in spring/summer. - Highlights:

  3. Linking top-down and bottom-up approaches for assessing the vulnerability of a 100 % renewable energy system in Northern-Italy

    Borga, Marco; Francois, Baptiste; Hingray, Benoit; Zoccatelli, Davide; Creutin, Jean-Dominique; brown, Casey


    in Northern Italy. The main VRE available in the region are solar and hydropower (with an important fraction of run-of-the river hydropower). The indicator of success is the well-known 'energy penetration', defined as the percentage of energy demand met by the VRE power generation. The synthetic weather variables used for building the CRFs are obtained by perturbing the observed weather time series with the change factors method. A large ensemble of future climate scenarios from CMIP5 experiments are further used for assessing these factors for different emission scenarios, climate models and future prediction lead times. Their positioning on the CRFs allows discussing the risk pertaining to VRE penetration in the future. A focus is especially made on the different CRFs obtained from daily to seasonal time scales.

  4. Normal Faulting, Fluid Upflow Pathways, and Alteration in the Subsurface of a Seafloor Ultramafic-Hosted Hydrothermal System, northern Apennines, Italy

    Alt, J.; Levine, D.; Crispini, L.; Gaggero, L.; Shanks, W. C., III; Gulbransen, C.


    We document the mineralogy and geochemistry of a fault that acted as a hydrothermal upflow zone in the subsurface of a seafloor ultramafic-hosted hydrothermal system in the northern Apennines, Italy. The objectives are to understand fluid flow pathways, and the relative roles of upwelling hydrothermal fluids versus cold seawater and biological effects in such systems on the modern seafloor, which is much more difficult to access and study. Peridotites were exposed on the seafloor by detachment faulting, intruded by MORB gabbros, and are overlain by MORB lavas and pelagic sediments. North of the village of Reppia are two 1-2 m wide fault shear zones in serpentinite, oriented at a high angle to the detachment surface and extending hundreds of meters below the detachment. The host peridotite is 90-100% serpentinized, and serpentinite is highly replaced by talc plus tremolite and sulfide in the shear zones. At the paleo-seafloor, the fault offsets carbonate-cemented serpentinite breccia, talc-altered serpentinite, and serpentinite in the footwall to the west, from pillow basalts of the hanging wall on the east. Here the fault rocks consist of 90% Fe-dolomite with a few percent each of calcite, quartz, serpentine, talc, sulfides, chlorite, and trace relict Cr-spinel. The fault ends upward in massive sulfide overlain by pillow basalts and pelagic sediment. Three main alteration stages are identified. 1. Background serpentinites exhibit slight LREE enrichments and elevated d34S values (+3.9 to +5.2‰) consistent with serpentinization by upwelling hot hydrothermal fluids. 2. Talc alteration of serpentinite leads to strong LREE enrichments, negative Eu anomalies, silica metasomatism, and elevated Cu during the main hydrothermal upflow stage. 3. Carbonate alteration varies from slight veining of serpentinite to near-total replacement in the shallow fault rocks, with variable enrichments of LREE, Ca, Si, and metals. Carbonate oxygen isotope temperatures of 15-150°C and d13C

  5. Canopy-scale flux measurements and bottom-up emission estimates of volatile organic compounds from a mixed oak and hornbeam forest in northern Italy

    Acton, W. Joe F.; Schallhart, Simon; Langford, Ben; Valach, Amy; Rantala, Pekka; Fares, Silvano; Carriero, Giulia; Tillmann, Ralf; Tomlinson, Sam J.; Dragosits, Ulrike; Gianelle, Damiano; Hewitt, C. Nicholas; Nemitz, Eiko


    This paper reports the fluxes and mixing ratios of biogenically emitted volatile organic compounds (BVOCs) 4 m above a mixed oak and hornbeam forest in northern Italy. Fluxes of methanol, acetaldehyde, isoprene, methyl vinyl ketone + methacrolein, methyl ethyl ketone and monoterpenes were obtained using both a proton-transfer-reaction mass spectrometer (PTR-MS) and a proton-transfer-reaction time-of-flight mass spectrometer (PTR-ToF-MS) together with the methods of virtual disjunct eddy covariance (using PTR-MS) and eddy covariance (using PTR-ToF-MS). Isoprene was the dominant emitted compound with a mean daytime flux of 1.9 mg m-2 h-1. Mixing ratios, recorded 4 m above the canopy, were dominated by methanol with a mean value of 6.2 ppbv over the 28-day measurement period. Comparison of isoprene fluxes calculated using the PTR-MS and PTR-ToF-MS showed very good agreement while comparison of the monoterpene fluxes suggested a slight over estimation of the flux by the PTR-MS. A basal isoprene emission rate for the forest of 1.7 mg m-2 h-1 was calculated using the Model of Emissions of Gases and Aerosols from Nature (MEGAN) isoprene emission algorithms (Guenther et al., 2006). A detailed tree-species distribution map for the site enabled the leaf-level emission of isoprene and monoterpenes recorded using gas-chromatography mass spectrometry (GC-MS) to be scaled up to produce a bottom-up canopy-scale flux. This was compared with the top-down canopy-scale flux obtained by measurements. For monoterpenes, the two estimates were closely correlated and this correlation improved when the plant-species composition in the individual flux footprint was taken into account. However, the bottom-up approach significantly underestimated the isoprene flux, compared with the top-down measurements, suggesting that the leaf-level measurements were not representative of actual emission rates.

  6. An automatic procedure for high-resolution earthquake locations: a case study from the TABOO near fault observatory (Northern Apennines, Italy)

    Valoroso, Luisa; Chiaraluce, Lauro; Di Stefano, Raffaele; Latorre, Diana; Piccinini, Davide


    The characterization of the geometry, kinematics and rheology of fault zones by seismological data depends on our capability of accurately locate the largest number of low-magnitude seismic events. To this aim, we have been working for the past three years to develop an advanced modular earthquake location procedure able to automatically retrieve high-resolution earthquakes catalogues directly from continuous waveforms data. We use seismograms recorded at about 60 seismic stations located both at surface and at depth. The network covers an area of about 80x60 km with a mean inter-station distance of 6 km. These stations are part of a Near fault Observatory (TABOO;, consisting of multi-sensor stations (seismic, geodetic, geochemical and electromagnetic). This permanent scientific infrastructure managed by the INGV is devoted to studying the earthquakes preparatory phase and the fast/slow (i.e., seismic/aseismic) deformation process active along the Alto Tiberina fault (ATF) located in the northern Apennines (Italy). The ATF is potentially one of the rare worldwide examples of active low-angle (search earthquake location algorithms to compute accurate absolute locations of single-events in a 3D geological model (see Latorre et al. same session); iv) cross-correlation and double-difference location methods to compute high-resolution relative event locations. This procedure is now running off-line with a delay of 1 week to the real-time. We are now implementing this procedure to obtain high-resolution double-difference earthquake locations in real-time (DDRT). We show locations of ~30k low-magnitude earthquakes recorded during the past 4 years (2010-2013) of network operation, reaching a completeness magnitude of the catalogue of 0.2. The spatiotemporal seismicity distribution has an almost constant and high rate of r = 24.30e-04 eqks/day*km2, interrupted by low to moderate magnitude seismic sequences such as the 2010 Pietralunga sequence (M L

  7. In situ bioavailability of DDT and Hg in sediments of the Toce River (Lake Maggiore basin, Northern Italy): accumulation in benthic invertebrates and passive samplers.

    Pisanello, Francesca; Marziali, Laura; Rosignoli, Federica; Poma, Giulia; Roscioli, Claudio; Pozzoni, Fiorenzo; Guzzella, Licia


    DDT and mercury (Hg) contamination in the Toce River (Northern Italy) was caused by a factory producing technical DDT and using a mercury-cell chlor-alkali plant. In this study, DDT and Hg contamination and bioavailability were assessed by using different approaches: (1) direct evaluation of sediment contamination, (2) assessment of bioaccumulation in native benthic invertebrates belonging to different taxonomic/functional groups, and (3) evaluation of the in situ bioavailability of DDT and Hg using passive samplers. Sampling sites were selected upstream and downstream the industrial plant along the river axis. Benthic invertebrates (Gammaridae, Heptageniidae, and Diptera) and sediments were collected in three seasons and analyzed for DDT and Hg content and the results were used to calculate the biota sediment accumulation factor (BSAF). Polyethylene passive samplers (PEs) for DDT and diffusive gradients in thin films (DGTs) for Hg were deployed in sediments to estimate the concentration of the toxicants in pore water. Analysis for (DDx) were performed using GC-MS. Accuracy was within ±30 % of the certified values and precision was >20 % relative standard deviation (RSD). Total mercury concentrations were determined using an automated Hg mercury analyzer. Precision was >5 % and accuracy was within ±10 % of certified values. The results of all the approaches (analysis of sediment, biota, and passive samplers) showed an increasing contamination from upstream to downstream sites. BSAF values revealed the bioavailability of both contaminants in the study sites, with values up to 49 for DDx and up to 3.1 for Hg. No correlation was found between values in sediments and the organisms. Concentrations calculated using passive samplers were correlated with values in benthic invertebrates, while no correlation was found with concentrations in sediments. Thus, direct analysis of toxicant in sediments does not provide a measurement of bioavailability. On the contrary

  8. Integrated stratigraphy of the Smirra Coring: a new reference sedimentary record for the early Paleogene from the Umbria-Marche Basin (Northern Apennines, Italy)

    Turtù, Antonio; Lauretano, Vittoria; Catanzariti, Rita; Galeotti, Simone; Lanci, Luca; Moretti, Matteo; Lourens, Lucas J.


    The early Paleogene represents a critical time interval in Earth's history characterized by prolonged greenhouse conditions, culminating in a series of extreme global warming events (i.e. hyperthermals), as well as large uncertainties in the Geological Time Scale. Therefore new, high-resolution, geological records are crucial in providing novel constraints on these topics. The Paleogene Umbria-Marche sections of the Northern Apennines (Italy) have shown to be suitable for integrated stratigraphy allowing regional-to-global correlations and environmental reconstructions across this time interval. Among several well-known sections, a new sedimentary record is provided by the Smirra Coring, which recovered an undisturbed sequence of rocks (~120 m from 4 overlapping holes) spanning the upper Scaglia Fms. (early Paleocene - middle Eocene) of the Umbria-Marche pelagic succession. Here we present a new, high-resolution, integrated stratigraphic framework (magnetostratigraphy, calcareous nannofossil biostratigraphy, physical properties, calibrated XRF core scanning and cyclostratigraphy) of the ~93 m composite section drilled in Smirra Holes 1 and 2. The succession extends almost continuously, with modest tectonic disturbance affecting its lowermost part with minor faulting. The resulting magnetic stratigraphy defines a succession of normal and reversed polarity magnetozones. The correlation of the paleomagnetic polarity sequence with the latest Geomagnetic Polarity Timescales (GPTSs; e.g. CK95, GTS 2004 and 2012), also constrained through nannofossil biostratigraphy, shows that the section spans the late Paleocene - middle Eocene from chrons C21n (~46 Ma) to C26r (~60 Ma). The overall sedimentation rates computed at Smirra are fully comparable with those from coeval sections from the Umbria-Marche Basin, ranging from ~10 m/Ma, between chrons C21n and C22n, to ~6 m/Ma, between chrons C22r and the base of the section. However, the sedimentation rates vary considerably

  9. Aggradation and lateral migration shaping geometry of a tidal point bar: An example from salt marshes of the Northern Venice Lagoon (Italy)

    Brivio, Lara; Ghinassi, Massimiliano; D'Alpaos, Andrea; Finotello, Alvise; Fontana, Alessandro; Roner, Marcella; Howes, Nick


    Although meanders are ubiquitous features of the tidal landscape, the architectural geometries of tidal point bar deposits are relatively unexplored and commonly investigated on the basis of facies models developed for their fluvial counterparts. The present study aims at improving current understanding of tidal point bar deposits developed in salt marsh settings, through a high-resolution investigation of an abandoned intertidal meander loop, located in the northern part of the Venice Lagoon (Italy). The study channel is 6 m wide and was active until the 1950s, when it was deactivated as consequence of a neck cut-off. A total of 150 cores was recovered from the associated point bar. The bar erosionally overlies a subtidal platform consisting of sand and mud and is covered by both channel fill and salt marsh mud. The bar, floored by a shell-rich sandy lag, consists of stratified fine sand, grading upward into sandy mud. The outer bank of the bend is characterized by well-developed, sand-rich levee deposits and absence of crevasse splays, which represent a distinctive feature of alluvial sedimentation. Sediment grain size distributions suggesting that seaward and landward sides of the point bar experienced comparable changes of bed shear stress due to alternation between flood and ebb currents, highlighting a remarkable difference with the classical downstream-fining characterizing fluvial point bars. Spatial interpolation between key stratal surfaces shows an overall thickening of the bar from 1.2 to 1.7 m in the direction of channel migration, associated with both lowering of the bar base and rising of its brink, which occurs in parallel with an increase in channel cross-sectional area, to progressively accommodate the increasing tidal prism. The bar top surface is characterized by a spoon-shaped geometry stemming out from a combination between lateral migration (8-10 cm/yr) and vertical aggradation (2.5-3.0 mm/yr) of the inner bank. In salt marsh settings

  10. Paleo-fluid flow in folded, poorly lithified Quaternary sediments revealed by diagenetic concretions developed during the growth of Quattro Castella Anticline (Northern Apennines, Italy)

    Pizzati, Mattia; Balsamo, Fabrizio; Iacumin, Paola; Swennen, Rudy; Storti, Fabrizio


    Diagenetic concretions and mineral masses may provide a useful tool to better understand paleo-fluid flows in transforming porous media. Moreover, the selective cementation responsible of diagenetic alterations formation, plays a key role in diminishing sediments porosity and permeability and hence reservoir quality. In compressive settings of a fold-and-thrust-belt, the presence of deep or blind thrusts could lead to the generation of folds which may influence syn-kinematic sedimentation, deep fluids migration and shallow fluid flow pattern. In this contribution we present a multidisciplinary field and laboratory study on carbonate concretions developed in Quaternary poorly lithified, shallow marine syn-kinematic sediments of the Quattro Castella Anticline in Northern Apennines (Italy). The study site is located along the Enza River, where shallow marine to continental sediments are exposed along the forelimb of the fold nucleated during Late Miocene and still active today. Field mapping was aimed to link bedding attitude of syn-kinematic sediments with the geometry, arrangement, shape and size of concretionary bodies. The studied concretions are both tabular (i.e. parallel to sediment bedding) and elongate single or coalescent concretionary bodies (i.e. plunging at different angle to bedding dip throughout the stratigraphic section). Concretions dimensions range from a few centimeters in single elongate concretions, up to a few meters in tabular and coalescent ones. In situ permeability measurements and laboratory grain size analyses were performed along the studied section to constrain the petrophysical properties of sediments hosting carbonate concretions. Carbon and oxygen stable isotopes analyses on carbonate concretions (performed both on hand specimens and also on thin sections), together with petrographic and cathodoluminescence observations, were used to better constrain the diagenetic environment in which calcite precipitation occurred. Our results

  11. Motherhood of foreign women in Lombardy: Testing the effects of migration by citizenship

    Eleonora Mussino


    Full Text Available Background: The international literature highlights the strong impact of the high risk of childbearing shortly after migration on period fertility, thus establishing a link between reproductive behaviors and migratory transitions. Objective: The present study aims to analyze how migration affects motherhood and the role played by country of citizenship. Although most of the literature has focused on analyzing post-immigration fertility behaviors, in the present work we follow the women for their entire fertility period. Methods: The data were collected in the 2010 ORIM survey, conducted by the Region of Lombardy and the Ismu Foundation. The survey covered about 8,000 immigrants in Lombardy, of whom 3,848 were women aged 14 years and over from less developed countries or Central/Eastern Europe. Using Event History Analysis, we applied discrete-time logit models to study the transition into motherhood. Results: Moroccans are characterized by a strong interrelation effect between fertility and migration. Moroccans and Albanians are the national groups with the highest risk of having a first child during the years shortly after migration. Migration does not seem to have any effect on the fertility behavior of Romanians, who have a lower risk of having a child regardless of their migration status. Conclusions: The study confirms the importance of the interrelationship between migratory and reproductive behaviors. It also highlights the different effects by country of citizenship, where different citizenships are often associated with different migration patterns and distinct gender roles.

  12. Agronomical evaluation and chemical characterization of Linum usitatissimum L. as oilseed crop for bio-based products in two environments of Central and Northern Italy

    Silvia Tavarini


    Full Text Available In the recent years, new perspectives for linseed (Linum usitatissimum L. are open as renewable raw material for bio-based products (Bb, due to its oil composition, and the interesting amounts of coproducts (lignocellulosic biomass. Therefore, the possibility to introduce linseed crop in two environments of central and northern Italy, traditionally devoted to cereal cultivation, has been evaluated. Twoyears field trials were carried out in the coastal plain of Pisa (Tuscany region and in the Po valley (Bologna, Emilia Romagna region, comparing two linseed varieties (Sideral and Buenos Aires. Agronomical evaluation (yield and yield components, seed and oil characterization (oil, protein content, and fatty acid composition, together with carbon (C and nitrogen (N content of the residual lignocellulosic biomass were investigated. The two varieties, grown as autumn crop, showed a different percentage of plant survival at the end of winter, with Sideral most resistant to cold. The achieved results showed significant influence of cultivar, location and growing season on yield and yield components, as well as on chemical biomass composition. In particular, Sideral appeared to be the most suitable variety for tested environments, since higher seed yield (3.05 t ha–1 as mean value over years and locations and above-ground biomass (6.98 t ha–1 as mean value over years and locations were recorded in comparison with those detected for Buenos Aires (1.93 and 4.48 t ha–1 of seed production and lignocellulosic biomass, respectively. Interestingly, in the northern area, during the 1st year, Buenos Aires was the most productive, despite its low plant survival at the end of winter, which determined a strong reduction in plant density and size. In such conditions, the plants produced a larger number of capsules and, consequently, high seed yield (3.18 t ha–1. Relevant differences were also observed between the two years, due to the variability of climatic

  13. Kinematic analysis of recent and active faults of the southern Umbria-Marche domain, Northern Apennines, Italy: geological constraints to geodynamic models

    Pasqui, Valeria; Viti, Marcello; Mantovani, Enzo


    The recent and active deformation that affects the crest zone of the Umbria-Marche belt (Northern Apennines, Italy) displays a remarkable extensional character, outlined by development of normal fault sets that overprint pre-existing folds and thrusts of Late Miocene-Early Pliocene age. The main extensional fault systems often bound intermontane depressions hosting recent, mainly continental, i.e. fluvial or lacustrine deposits, separating the latter from Triassic-Miocene, mainly carbonatic and siliciclastic marine rocks that belong to the Romagna-Umbria-Marche stratigraphic succession. Stratigraphic data indicate that the extensional strain responsible for the development of normal fault-bounded continental basins in the outer zones of the Northern Apennines was active until Middle Pleistocene time. Since Middle Pleistocene time onwards a major geodynamic change has affected the Central Mediterranean region, with local reorganization of the kinematics in the Adria domain and adjacent Apennine belt. A wide literature illustrates that the overall deformation field of the Central Mediterranean area is presently governed by the relative movements between the Eurasia and Africa plates. The complex interaction of the Africa-Adria and the Anatolian-Aegean-Balkan domains has led the Adria microplate to migrate NW-ward and to collide against Eurasia along the Eastern Southern Alps. As a consequence Adria is presently moving with a general left-lateral displacement with respect to the Apennine mountain belt. The sinistral component of active deformations is also supported by analysis of earthquake focal mechanisms. A comparison between geophysical and geological evidence outlines an apparent discrepancy: most recognized recent and active faults display a remarkable extensional character, as shown by the geometry of continental basin-bounding structutes, whereas geodetic and seismologic evidence indicates the persistency of an active strike-slip, left-lateral dominated




    Full Text Available The Fraele Formation crops out in the Ortles Nappe (upper Valtellina, Northern Italy, structurally part of the Central Austroalpine Domain. It consists of fine siliciclastics alternating with carbonates, mostly limestones,rare dolostones and marls. The formation differs lithologically from the underlying Norian Dolomia del Cristallo because of different paleonvironmental evolution.The change in environmental parameters was controlled mainly by a climatic change to more humid conditions.This favoured on one hand the mobilisation and trasport by rivers of siliciclastic material from the continent to the Tethys gulf,and on the other influenced the sea-water chemistry.Freshwater influxes lowered salinity and inhibited early dolomitisation. Input of low density freshwater resulted in the astablishment of a permanent water mass stratification which influenced the benthic life. This paleoenvironmental reconstruction fits with the sudden clastic input which occurred in several palaeogeographic domains of the western Tethys realm (Austroalpine, Southalpine, Apennine, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia during the Late Norian.  

  15. Venice, Italy


    Four hundred bridges cross the labyrinth of canals that form the 120 islands of Venice, situated in a saltwater lagoon between the mouths of the Po and Piave rivers in northeast Italy. All traffic in the city moves by boat. Venice is connected to the mainland, 4 kilometers (2.5 miles) away, by ferries as well as a causeway for road and rail traffic. The Grand Canal winds through the city for about 3 kilometers (about 2 miles), dividing it into two nearly equal sections. According to tradition, Venice was founded in 452, when the inhabitants of Aquileia, Padua, and several other northern Italian cities took refuge on the islands of the lagoon from the Teutonic tribes invading Italy at that time.This image was acquired on December 9, 2001 by the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) on NASA's Terra satellite. With its 14 spectral bands from the visible to the thermal infrared wavelength region, and its high spatial resolution of 15 to 90 meters (about 50 to 300 feet), ASTER will image Earth for the next 6 years to map and monitor the changing surface of our planet.ASTER is one of five Earth-observing instruments launched December 18, 1999, on NASA's Terra satellite. The instrument was built by Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. A joint U.S./Japan science team is responsible for validation and calibration of the instrument and the data products.The broad spectral coverage and high spectral resolution of ASTER will provide scientists in numerous disciplines with critical information for surface mapping, and monitoring dynamic conditions and temporal change. Example applications are: monitoring glacial advances and retreats; monitoring potentially active volcanoes; identifying crop stress; determining cloud morphology and physical properties; wetlands evaluation; thermal pollution monitoring; coral reef degradation; surface temperature mapping of soils and geology; and measuring surface heat balance.Dr. Anne Kahle at NASA

  16. Reconstructing conditions during dolomite formation on a Carnian coastal sabkha/alluvial plain using 87Sr/86Sr isotopes - Travenanzes Formation, northern Italy

    Rieder, Maximilian; Wegner, Wencke; Horschinegg, Monika; Preto, Nereo; Breda, Anna; Klötzli, Urs; Peckmann, Jörn; Meister, Patrick


    indicated by oxygen isotopes. The marine 87Sr/86Sr values have been reconstructed for most of the Phanerozoic and are nearly constant in the Carnian (McArthur et al., 2012), while the age of the dolomite beds of the Travenanzes Formation is constrained by their stratigraphic position in the measured section (Dibona Section; Preto et al., 2015). The continental Sr isotope signal is governed by weathering rates, especially during silicate weathering of the source rock in the catchment area (McArthur et al., 2012). Through 87Sr/86Sr isotope investigation of primary dolomite in beds and nodules of the coastal sabkha or alluvial plain environment, the influence of marine or continental conditions can be determined. The finding of celestine SrSO4 and Sr-rich barite BaSO4 within the cemented dolomite by SEM indicates enrichment of Sr, possibly during strong evaporative conditions. Hence, the generation of phase-specific Sr-isotope data will allow for a more precise reconstruction of the conditions that led to dolomite formation in the Triassic shallow coastal sabkha/alluvial plain environment. McArthur et al. (2012) Strontium isotope stratigraphy. In: "The geologic time scale" (F.M Gradstein et al., eds.), Elsevier, p. 127-144. Preto et al. (2015) Primary dolomite in the Late Triassic Travenanzes Formation Dolomites, Northern Italy: Facies control and possible bacterial influence. Sedimentology 62, p. 697-716.

  17. Behavioural ecology of captive otters Lutra lutra in the Breeding Centre of the Natural Park of Ticino Valley (Piemonte Region, Northern Italy

    Renato Fumagalli


    Full Text Available Abstract The study was conducted on a pair of otters (Lutra lutra housed in an enclosure of 1.64 ha, located within a wet wood in the Natural Park of the Ticino Valley (northern Italy, Piemonte region. This enclosure contained two ponds (0.2 and 0.45 ha with fairly good cover vegetation, where a fish biomass of 201.5 kg/ha, represented by 14 fish species, was assessed by electrofishing. Though the food supply for otter was fairly good, the animals were daily fed with 1.5 kg of chicks, meat or rainbow trout (Salmo gairdneri. In order to evaluate the habitat selection of otters, the enclosure was divided into 15 environmental units (EU. Hunting, swimming and playing (exclusively in pair were the main behavioural activities and were preferentially performed close to the ponds' bank, where a thick cover occurred. Otters selected patches for foraging where fish was concentrated and particularly vulnerable to predation. The hunting impact in a given EU (defined as ratio between the number of prey caught in the EU and the total number of prey was correlated with the hunting time spent in the same EU. Habitat use evaluated by direct observations differed from that determined by considering the marking level (number of spraints and anal secretions. The consumption of the different fish species did not seem to be determined by their relative abundance. Perca fluviatilis was particularly selected. Riassunto Ecologia comportamentale della lontra Lutra lutra nel centro di studio del Parco Naturale della Valle del Ticino (Regione Piemonte - Lo studio è stato condotto su una coppia di lontra (Lutra lutra tenuta in un ampio recinto (1.64 ha, situato nel Parco Naturale della Valle del Ticino (Regione Piemonte, Provincia di Novara. L'area cintata è ritagliata all'interno di un bosco planiziale e comprende 2 bacini idrici (0,2 e 0,4 ha bordati da discreta copertura

  18. Nitrogen balance and fate in a heavily impacted watershed (Oglio River, Northern Italy: in quest of the missing sources and sinks

    M. Bartoli


    Full Text Available We present data from a comprehensive investigation carried out from 2007 to 2010, focussing on nitrogen pollution in the lower Oglio River basin (3800 km2, Po plain, Northern Italy. Nitrogen mass balances, computed for the whole basin with 2000 and 2008 data, suggest a large N surplus in this area, over 40 000 t N yr−1, and increasing between 2000 and 2008. Calculations indicate a very large impact of animal husbandry and agricultural activities in this watershed, with livestock manure and synthetic fertilizers contributing 85 % of total N inputs (about 100 000 t N yr−1 and largely exceeding crop uptake and other N losses (about 60 000 t N yr−1. Nitrogen from domestic and industrial origin is estimated as about 5800 and 7200 t N yr−1, respectively, although these loads are overestimated, as denitrification in treatment plants is not considered; nonetheless, they represent a minor term of the N budget. Annual export of nitrogen from the basin, calculated from flow data and water chemistry at the mouth of the Oglio River, is estimated at 13 000 t N yr−1, and represents a relatively small fraction of N inputs and surplus (~12 % and 34 %, respectively. After considering N sinks in crop uptake, soil denitrification and volatilization, a large excess remains unaccounted (~26 000 t N yr−1 in unknown temporary or permanent N sinks. Nitrogen removal via denitrification was evaluated in the Oglio riverbed with stable isotope techniques (δ15N and δ18O in nitrate. The downstream final segment of the river displays an enriched nitrate stable isotope composition but calculations suggest a N removal corresponding to at most 12 % of the unaccounted for N amount. Denitrification was also evaluated in riverine wetlands with the isotope pairing technique. Areal rates are elevated but overall N removal is low (about 1 % of the missing N amount, due to

  19. Low frequency amplification in deep alluvial basins: an example in the Po Plain (Northern Italy) and consequences for site specific SHA

    Mascandola, Claudia; Massa, Marco; Barani, Simone; Lovati, Sara; Santulin, Marco


    This work deals with the problem of long period seismic site amplification that potentially might involve large and deep alluvial basins in case of strong earthquakes. In particular, it is here presented a case study in the Po Plain (Northern Italy), one of the most extended and deep sedimentary basin worldwide. Even if the studied area shows a low annul seismicity rate with rare strong events (Mw>6.0) and it is characterized by low to medium seismic hazard conditions, the seismic risk is significant for the high density of civil and strategic infrastructures (i.e. high degree of exposition) and the unfavourable geological conditions. The aim of this work is to provide general considerations about the seismic site response of the Po Plain, with particular attention on deep discontinuities (i.e. geological bedrock), in terms of potential low frequency amplification and their incidence on the PSHA. The current results were obtained through active and passive geophysical investigations performed near Castelleone, a site where a seismic station, which is part of the INGV (National Institute for Geophysics and Volcanology) Seismic National Network, is installed from 2009. In particular, the active analyses consisted in a MASW and a refraction survey, whereas the passive ones consisted in seismic ambient noise acquisitions with single stations and arrays of increasing aperture. The results in terms of noise HVSR indicate two main peaks, the first around 0.17 Hz and the second, as already stated in the recent literature, around 0.7 Hz. In order to correlate the amplified frequencies with the geological discontinuities, the array acquisitions were processed to obtain a shear waves velocity profile, computed with a joint inversion, considering the experimental dispersion curves and the HVSR results. The obtained velocity profile shows two main discontinuities: the shallower at ~165 m of depth, which can be correlated to the seismic bedrock (i.e. Vs > 800 m/) and the deeper

  20. An integrated approach to asses origin and mobilization of As, Fe and Mn in groundwater: the case study of Cremona (northern Italy)

    Rotiroti, Marco; Bonomi, Tullia; Fumagalli, Letizia


    The present work concerns the analysis of the hydrogeology and the hydrogeochemistry of the As, Fe, Mn rich groundwater of the alluvial multi-layer aquifer in the lower Po Plain of Cremona (northern Italy). In this analysis, an integrated approach is applied in order to understand the origins (natural or anthropic) and chemical mechanisms of high groundwater As, Fe and Mn concentrations found in the study area. The study area covers a 50 km2 wide area around the urban territory of Cremona. It is located near the confluence between Adda and Po rivers. The multi-aquifer system which interests the first 200-250 m of depth is investigated. The integrated approach involves the (a) collection of historical data related to water quality, water levels and well logs; (b) storage of collected data in specific databases and geographical information systems; (c) design and execution of two field surveys of water levels and water quality, realized in July 2010 and July 2012, concerning also groundwater sampling for isotope and microbiological analysis; (d) construction of a 3D model of aquifer hydrogeological properties (deposits texture, hydraulic conductivity and effective porosity), built by means of ordinary kriging interpolation of numerical values derived from the coding of well logs; (e) analysis of the hydrodynamic properties of the system on the basis of the field measurements; (f) analysis of water quality data (both field and historical data) considering the hydrogeological and hydrodynamic properties of the aquifer system; (g) analysis of isotope and microbiological measurements; (h) implementation of a 1D reactive transport model in order to better understand the hydrogeochemical mechanisms in the system; (i) elaboration of a general hydrogeochemical conceptual model concerning possible origins and chemical mechanisms for the high groundwater As, Fe, Mn and NH4 concentrations, considering also possible anthropogenic influences; (j) development of management tools

  1. On three new species of Echinogammarus, related to E.veneris (Heller, 1865), from Italy and Switzerland (Crustacea, Amphipoda)

    Pinkster, S.; Stock, J.H.


    Description of three freshwater species of Echinogammarus, viz. E. fluminenis n.sp. (from northern Italy and southern Switzerland), E. ruffoi n.sp. (from northern Italy), and E. libaldii (from central Italy). New records and some notes on the morphology of E. veneris (Heller) in Italy are provided.

  2. [Asbestos exposure in the non-asbestos textile industry: the experience of the Lombardy Mesothelioma Registry].

    Mensi, Carolina; Macchione, Maria; Termine, Lorenzo; Canti, Zulejka; Rivolta, Giuseppe; Riboldi, Luciano; Chiappino, Gerolamo


    The Lombardy Mesothelioma Registry, activated in 2000, receives more than 300 cases per year of suspected malignant mesothelioma; the standardized (age and gender) incidence rate of pleural mesothelioma is 2.4/100,000 inhabitants (CI 95% 2.0-2.7). The finding of an increasing number of cases among workers of the non-asbestos-textile industry, classified as "unknown exposure to asbestos", upheld the suspect of presence of asbestos in this compartment. Specific information about a possible asbestos exposure were collected by technicians, maintenance personnel and other experts; industrial machinery utilized in the past was thoroughly examined; direct inspections were carried out in several workplaces that had not yet undergone significant changes with respect to the past. A large amount of asbestos had been regularly used on the ceilings and also to the walls of factories in order to avoid both condensation of steam and reflection of noise. In addition, asbestos had also been widely used to insulate water and steam pipes. The braking systems of most of machines also had asbestos gaskets, and on several looms some brakes operated continuously. The population in study was composed of 119 subjects, 27 males and 92 females, median age of 72 years. Asbestos exposure was ascribed to work in 106 cases (89%). The system devised by the Lombardy Registry had brought to light an occupational hazard in a professional area previously never believed as a source of asbestos exposure. In consideration of the described experience, both environmental and clinical, it seems reasonable to consider the non-asbestos-textile as a new department at risk for asbestos exposure.

  3. Gate to Italy; Das Tor zu Italien

    Roepcke, Ina


    Increasingly, German businesses are setting up workshops in Southern Tyrol. This region of Northern Italy offers ideal conditions, as well as German-speaking partners. However, to be successful they will also need Italian partners. (orig.)

  4. A multicentre study of patient survival, disability, quality of life and cost of care - Among patients with AIDS in northern Italy

    Tramarin, A; Campostrini, S; Postma, MJ; Calleri, G; Tolley, K; Parise, N; de Lalla, F


    Objective: To describe the epidemiological, clinical and economic changes that occurred in the HIV epidemic in Italy prior to and after the introduction of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART). Design: A prospective, observational, multicentre case-control study was conducted comparing data,

  5. Mental health care in Italy: organisational structure, routine clinical activity and costs of a community psychiatric service in Lombardy region.

    Fattore, G; Percudani, M; Pugnoli, C; Contini, A; Beecham, J


    The Magenta Community Mental Health Centre (CMHC) is the public agency responsible for providing adult psychiatric care to about 85,000 adult residents. In 1995, it had 1,145 clients and incurred costs of Euro 1.9 millions. Average cost per patient and per adult resident were Euro 1,661 and Euro 22.2, respectively. These values mask large variation across diagnosis: while patients with schizophrenia and related disorders had an average cost of Euro 3,771, those with neurotic and related disorders had an average cost of Euro 439. Patients with schizophrenia and related disorders (28% of the patients) absorbed about 60% of total costs and made extensive use of several types of services (hospital, outpatient, domiciliary, social and rehabilitative care). Since integrating different types of services is the key element of Italian psychiatric care, the new fee-for-service system adopted by the NHS to fund providers does not appear appropriate, particularly for schizophrenic patients.

  6. Brief communication "Ground failure and liquefaction phenomena triggered by the 20 May 2012 Emilia-Romagna (Northern Italy earthquake: case study of Sant'Agostino–San Carlo–Mirabello zone"

    R. Caputo


    Full Text Available The basic aim of this study was to observe and report the earthquake-induced ground deformation of the MW = 6.1 Emilia-Romagna (Northern Italy event that occurred on the 20 May 2012. The event caused widespread structural damages in a large area of the Po Plain, while the most characteristic geological effects were ground failure, lateral spreading and liquefaction. This post-earthquake reconnaissance report focuses on secondary effects within the area between the villages of Sant'Agostino, San Carlo and Mirabello located along a former reach of the Reno River. Our field observations started just few hours after the main shock until the 28 May 2012.

  7. Reviewing the upper Pleistocene human footprints from the 'Sala dei Misteri' in the Grotta della Bàsura (Toirano, northern Italy) cave: An integrated morphometric and morpho-classificatory approach

    Paolo Citton; Romano, Marco; Salvador, Isabella; Avanzini, Marco


    About thirty human footprints made approximately 12,000 years B.P. inside the 'Sala dei Misteri' Cave of Básura near Toirano, Liguria, northern Italy, were studied by standard ichnological analysis. Eleven of the best-preserved tracks were examined further using morpho-classificatory and morphometric approaches, in order to estimate the minimum number of trackmakers; biometric measurements were also used to tentatively determine their physical characteristics (e.g., height and age). Results indicate at least three different producers, two youths and the third of tender age. Analysis of the data demonstrate the power of 3D, of landmark-based morphometrics, and the utility of methods of forensic anthropology in the determination of human footprints. The study of the number of trackmakers using the principal component analysis (PCA) on 'multi-trampling' surfaces could represent a model in the ichnological study of cave sites.

  8. Mapping of topsoil organic carbon in agro-ecosystems of a flat terrain area (Lombardy) by means of legacy soil data, climatic data and NDVI time series predictors with machine learning methods

    Schillaci, Calogero; Saia, Sergio; Braun, Andreas; Acutis, Marco


    , A., Provolo, G., Di Guardo, A., Colombini, S., Bertoncini, G.,Castelnuovo, M., Sali, G., Moschini, M., Sanna, M., Perego, A., Carozzi, M., Chiodini, M.E., Fumagalli, M., 2014. ValorE: An integrated and GIS-based decision support system for livestock manure management in the Lombardy region (northern Italy). Land use policy 41, 149-162. doi:10.1016/j.landusepol.2014.05.007 Ramankutty, N., A. T. Evan, C. Monfreda, and J. A. Foley (2008), Farming the planet: 1. Geographic distribution of global agricultural lands in the year 2000, Global Biogeochem. Cycles , 22, GB1003, doi:10.1029/2007GB002952.

  9. A methodology for analysing temporal changes of forest surface using aerial photos for the application of Kyoto protocol: a study case in Northern Italy

    Salvadori I


    Full Text Available According to art. 3.3 of the Kyoto Protocol, Italy, like other Parties included in Annex I, shall report the net changes in greenhouse gas emissions by sources and removals by sinks resulting from afforestation, reforestation and deforestation activities (ARD. To evaluate these activities, Italy has to elaborate methods to estimate the conversion of non-forested to forested land, occurred after 31 December 1989. The aim of this study was to test a methodology to estimate the ARD activities. The approach was experimented in the Comunità Montana del Grappa (about 10500 ha considered as a pilot area in the Prealpine region (NE Italy. The land-use change relative to the forest area was assessed by multitemporal classification of 1131 sampling points on orthocorrected aerial photos relative to 1991, 1996 and 1999. The forest area based on different definitions (minimum land cover equal to 10%, 20% or 30% and minimum surface equal to 2000 m2 or 5000 m2 was also assessed. Between 1991 and 1999, the total increment of the forest area was equal to 224 ha. However, the estimated increment was strongly related to the minimum surface (2000 m2 vs 5000 m2 of the forest definition. The proposed procedure was relatively easy to implement and highlighted the role of ARD and revegetation to attain the goals appointed from the Kyoto Protocol.

  10. Factors affecting the distribution of fox dens in northern Italy / Fattori influenzanti la distribuzione delle tane di volpe (Vulpes vulpes in Italia settentrionale

    Alberto Meriggi


    Full Text Available Abstract From 1st. October to 31st. December 1988 the fox dens were censused in an area of 2,589 km² in Northern Italy. The mean density was 0.67 dens/km². Significant differences resulted between the density found in the four altitudinal ranges: plain 0.28 dens/km² (S.D.=0.30; low hill 0.71/km² (S.D.=0.37; middle hill 1.20/km² (S.D.=0.35; mountain 0.41/km² (S.D.=0.42. The highest densities were recorded in protected areas (0.98 dens/km², while the lowest values were found in hunting areas (0.41/km² in social hunting ground and 0.33/km² in estates. The density was positively correlated with the mean altitude (r=0.443, PRiassunto Dal 1 ottobre al 31 dicembre 1988 sono state censite le tane di Volpe (Vulpes vulpes in provincia di Piacenza (2.589 km², 48 comuni. La densità media provinciale è stata di 0,67 tane/km². Differenze significative sono risultate tra le densità delle 4 fasce altimetriche della provincia: pianura 0,28/km² (D.S.=0

  11. The peculiar case of Marosticano xenoliths: a cratonic mantle fragment affected by carbonatite metasomatism in the Veneto Volcanic Province (Northern Italy)

    Brombin, Valentina; Bonadiman, Costanza; Coltorti, Massimo; Florencia Fahnestock, M.; Bryce, Julia G.; Marzoli, Andrea


    The Tertiary Magmatic Province of Veneto, known as Veneto Volcanic Province (VVP), in the Northern Italy, represents one of the most important volcanic provinces of the Adria Plate. It is composed by five volcanic districts: Val d'Adige, Marosticano, Mts. Lessini, Berici Hills and Euganean Hills. Most of the volcanic products are relatively undifferentiated lavas, from nephelinites to tholeiites in composition. Commonly VVP nephelinites and basanites carry mantle xenoliths. This study presents a petrological characterization of the new xenolith occurrence of Marosticano and comparison with previously studied VVP xenolith populations (i.e. from the Lessinean and Val d'Adige areas), which represent off-craton lithospheric mantle fragment affected by Na-alkaline silicate metasomatism (Siena & Coltorti 1989; Beccaluva et al., 2001; Gasperini et al., 2006). Marosticano (MA) peridotites are anhydrous spinel-bearing lherzolites and harzburgites, which are geochemically well distinguishible from the other VVP mantle xenoliths. Primary minerals record the "most restitic" composition of the VVP sampled mantle, even calling the geochemical features of a sub-cratonic mantle. Olivines in both lherzolites and harzburgites show high Ni contents compared with the Fo values (Ni→ lherzolite: 2600-3620 ppm; harzburgite: 2600-3540 ppm; Fo → lh: 91-92; hz: 90-93) that follow the trend of olivine from a cratonic area (Kelemen, 1998). Orthopyroxenes have mg# values with 1:1 ratio with coexisting olivines and Al2O3 contents always 0.5 wt%) contents are also the chemical characteristics of the clinopyroxenes. On the whole both MA pyroxenes show major element contents that recall the characteristics of those from cratonic (sp-bearing) peridotites (e.g. from Greenland, South Africa and Tanzania; Downes et al., 2004). In addition, the relationship between the high Fo content of olivine and the high chromium contents (cr#=(Cr/(Cr+Al)X100); lh: 30-53; hz: 38-67) in coexisting spinel, out of

  12. Investigation on a focus of human trichinellosis revealed by an atypical clinical case after wild-boar (Sus scrofa pork consumption in northern Italy

    Romano F.


    Full Text Available Trichinellosis is one of the most serious foodborne parasitic zoonoses in Europe. Wild carnivorous and omnivorous hosts are the main reservoirs of Trichinella spp. nematodes in nature. In the winter of 2008-2009, an atypical clinical case of trichinellosis occurred for the consumption of pork from a wild boar (Sus scrofa hunted in southwestern Alps in Italy. The symptomatic individual showed delayed development of oedemas in the lower limbs and eosinophilia, which appeared three months after infection. Muscle samples harboured 3.8 larvae/g, which were identified as Trichinella britovi. During the epidemiological investigation, anti-Trichinella IgG were detected in five hunters.

  13. New paleoradiological investigations of ancient human remains from North West Lombardy archaeological excavations.

    Licata, Marta; Borgo, Melania; Armocida, Giuseppe; Nicosia, Luca; Ferioli, Elena


    Since its birth in 1895, radiology has been used to study ancient mummies. The purpose of this article is to present paleoradiological investigations conducted on several medieval human remains in Varese province. Anthropological (generic identification) and paleopathological analyses were carried out with the support of diagnostic imaging (X-ray and CT scans). Human remains were discovered during excavations of medieval archaeological sites in northwest Lombardy. Classical physical anthropological methods were used for the macroscopic identification of the human remains. X-ray and CT scans were performed on the same scanner (16-layer Hitachi Eclos 16 X-ray equipment). Results Radiological analysis permitted investigating (1) the sex, (2) age of death, (3) type of trauma, (4) therapeutic interventions and (5) osteomas in ancient human remains. In particular, X-ray and CT examinations showed dimorphic facial traits on the mummified skull, and the same radiological approaches allowed determining the age at death from a mummified lower limb. CT analyses allow investigating different types of traumatic lesions in skulls and postcranial skeleton portions and reconstructing the gait and functional outcomes of a fractured femur. Moreover, one case of possible Gardner’s syndrome (GS) was postulated from observing multiple osteomas in an ancient skull. Among the medical tests available to the clinician, radiology is the most appropriate first-line procedure for a diagnostic approach to ancient human remains because it can be performed without causing any significant damage to the specimen.

  14. Leibniz's Observations on Hydrology: An Unpublished Letter on the Great Lombardy Flood of 1705.

    Strickland, Lloyd; Church, Michael


    Although the historical reputation of Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (1646-1716) largely rests on his philosophical and mathematical work, it is widely known that he made important contributions to many of the emerging but still inchoate branches of natural science of his day. Among the many scientific papers Leibniz published during his lifetime are ones on the nascent science we now know as hydrology. While Leibniz's other scientific work has become of increasing interest to scholars in recent years, his thinking about hydrology has been neglected, despite being relatively broad in extent, including as it does papers on the 'raising of vapours' and the formation of ice, as well as the separation of salt and fresh water. That list can now be extended still further following the discovery of a previously unpublished letter of Leibniz's on the causes of the devastating Lombardy flood of October and November 1705. This letter, which will be the focus of our paper, reveals the depth of Leibniz's understanding of key hydrological processes. In it, he considers various mechanisms for the flood, such as heavy rains on high ground, underwater earthquakes, and a mountain collapse. Over the course of the paper we examine each of these mechanisms in depth, and show that Leibniz was in the vanguard of hydrological thinking. We also show that the letter contains one of the first scholarly attempts to apply aspects of the still-forming notion of the hydrological cycle to account for a flood event.

  15. New paleoradiological investigations of ancient human remains from North West Lombardy archaeological excavations

    Licata, Marta; Borgo, Melania; Armocida, Giuseppe; Nicosia, Luca; Ferioli, Elena [University of Insubria (Varese), Department of Biotechnology and Life Sciences, Varese (Italy)


    Since its birth in 1895, radiology has been used to study ancient mummies. The purpose of this article is to present paleoradiological investigations conducted on several medieval human remains in Varese province. Anthropological (generic identification) and paleopathological analyses were carried out with the support of diagnostic imaging (X-ray and CT scans). Human remains were discovered during excavations of medieval archaeological sites in northwest Lombardy. Classical physical anthropological methods were used for the macroscopic identification of the human remains. X-ray and CT scans were performed on the same scanner (16-layer Hitachi Eclos 16 X-ray equipment). Radiological analysis permitted investigating (1) the sex, (2) age of death, (3) type of trauma, (4) therapeutic interventions and (5) osteomas in ancient human remains. In particular, X-ray and CT examinations showed dimorphic facial traits on the mummified skull, and the same radiological approaches allowed determining the age at death from a mummified lower limb. CT analyses allow investigating different types of traumatic lesions in skulls and postcranial skeleton portions and reconstructing the gait and functional outcomes of a fractured femur. Moreover, one case of possible Gardner's syndrome (GS) was postulated from observing multiple osteomas in an ancient skull. Among the medical tests available to the clinician, radiology is the most appropriate first-line procedure for a diagnostic approach to ancient human remains because it can be performed without causing any significant damage to the specimen. (orig.)

  16. The economy of charity and forgiveness. Alms and indulgences in late medieval Lombardy

    Giuliana Albini


    Full Text Available In the late Middle Ages, one of the ways to support hospitals and confraternities was the collection of alms, associated with the granting of indulgences. Through confession, the believers acquired the forgiveness from sins, and through acts of devotion and charity the reduction of the punishment to expiate in the afterlife (in Purgatory. Although studies on the topic are scarce, it is not risked to say that the indulgences had a particular luck in charities. The following pages are designed to provide new elements about the ways in which, in Lombardy, hospitals and confraternities guaranteed themselves privileges for indulgences given by the Pope and by the bishops. A special effort has been made to quantify (whenever the sources allowed to do it the costs that the institution had to incur for the management of a campaign of indulgences and the economic benefits derived from it. If in certain hospital orders the economic impact of collecting money seems to be relevant, in other cases it appears marginal. This latter is the case of the Great Hospital in Milan, which does not seem to depend on the collection of money linked to indulgences. But, despite this reduced economic impact, the Hospital reserved an important role on the "festa del Perdono" (indulgence granted by Pope Pius II, because, in the context of charity and assistance, the symbolic and communicative value was important like the material aid to the poors.

  17. The organized contadi. Administration and territoriality of "rural communities" in four districts of Lombardy (1210-1250 ca

    Paolo Gabriele Nobili


    Full Text Available The paper deals with the evolution in the administrations of four Contadi in central and eastern cities of Lombardy (Bergamo, Brescia, Lodi and Mantova. It begins by examining the estate surveys that in the whole area start from the first two decades of the thirteenth century. These surveys will become instruments of knowledge of local territories. In addition it considers the legislation with which the city was seeking to build an active territoriality of the communities in the district. The district is also divided by cities into smaller administrative entities: the rural communities.

  18. Preliminary study of the effects of preventive measures on the prevalence of Canine Leishmaniosis in a recently established focus in northern Italy

    Rudi Cassini


    Full Text Available Canine Leishmaniosis is endemic in Mediterranean areas, with a well-documented northward spread. The mass use of preventive measures against sandfly bites (collar and spot-on formulations was tested in a small focus recently established in an isolated hilly area of north-eastern Italy (Colli Euganei. In 2006 and 2007, a total of 449 dogs living in the southern part of Colli Euganei were screened against Leishmania infantum using an immunofluorescence antibody test (IFAT, and 31 (6.9% were seropositive. A risk factor analysis clearly described the focus as limited to a small village named Calaone. In 2010, 63 animals from Calaone were sampled and their owners interviewed to verify the effectiveness of the preventive measures. According to what reported by owners, dogs started to be protected in 2006 (66.7% dogs protected, and protection rate incremented (around 90% during the subsequent years. The seroprevalence value (4.2% of the youngest age class (<5 years was significantly lower than other classes, demonstrating that animals born after 2006 had low probabilities of getting infected. Besides, seroprevalence value referred only to dogs living in Calaone was 32.4% (23/71 in 2006-2007 and 20.6% (13/63 in 2010, showing a decreasing trend. Although still preliminary, the results show high sensitization of dog owners and suggest that the mass use of collars and spot-on acts positively in reducing the circulation of L. infantum.

  19. A 10,300-year-old permafrost core from the active rock glacier Lazaun, southern Ötztal Alps (South Tyrol, northern Italy)

    Krainer, Karl; Bressan, David; Dietre, Benjamin; Haas, Jean Nicolas; Hajdas, Irka; Lang, Kathrin; Mair, Volkmar; Nickus, Ulrike; Reidl, Daniel; Thies, Hansjörg; Tonidandel, David


    Two cores were drilled on rock glacier Lazaun in the southern Ötztal Alps (N Italy). The average ice content of core Lazaun I is 43 vol.% and of core Lazaun II is 22 vol.%. Radiocarbon dating of plant macrofossil remains of core Lazaun I yielded ages ranging from 8960 cal yr BP at a depth of ca. 23.5 m to 2240 cal yr BP at a depth of 2.8 m, indicating that the ice near the base is approximately 10,300 yr old. The rock glacier was intact since that time and the ice persisted even during warm periods of the Holocene. An ice-free debris layer between 16.8 and 14.7 m separates the rock glacier into two frozen bodies. Inclinometer measurements indicate that both frozen bodies are active and that deformation occurs within a shear horizon at a depth of 20-25 m at the base of the lower frozen body and to a minor extent at a depth of approximately 14 m at the base of the upper frozen body. The ice-free debris layer in the middle of the Lazaun rock glacier indicates a more than five centennial long drought period, which dates to about 4300-3740 cal yr BP.

  20. The role of the contribution of the whole sea energy on pollution distribution and biocenosis quality: a case study in the Northern Tyrrhenian Sea, Italy

    Bonamano, Simone; Piermattei, Viviana; Piazzolla, Daniele; Paladini de Mendoza, Francesco; Manfredi Frattarelli, Francesco; Mancini, Emanuele; Cognetti de Martiis, Selvaggia; Madonia, Alice; Martellucci, Riccardo; Stefanì, Chiara; Pierattini, Alberto; Scanu, Sergio; Marcelli, Marco


    Marine sediments and benthic biocenosis record, at different spatial and temporal scales, natural and anthropogenic processes that occur in the water column. The coastal area of Civitavecchia, in the Tyrrhenian Sea, Italy, presents valuable marine and coastal ecosystems, which are subject to pollution due to the presence of potentially impactful uses of the coastline (the most important port for traffic passenger in the Mediterranean sea and one of the biggest energy production site in Europe) that overlap with the presence of natural geogenic anomalies related to the concentrations of some trace elements. The C-CEMS monitoring system, currently available in the study area, is able to perform the analysis of pollutants dispersion in coastal waters using in situ and remote observations coupled with numerical models simulations . In particular, water column parameters trends and the distribution of both benthic biocenosis and pollutants from natural sources and human activities in the water column can be assessed. This work focuses on the distribution patterns of pollutants and its relationship with the distribution of the benthic community in relation to biocenosis. Moreover, this work presents a first attempt to relate the whole sea energy contribution, which has effects on both the deposition of fine material and pollutants associated with it, and the distribution of communities, in terms of "exosomatic energy" (sensu Margalef).

  1. Commercial catches, reproduction and feeding habits of Raja asterias (Chondrichthyes: Rajidae in a coastal area of the Tyrrhenian Sea (Italy, northern Mediterranean

    Marino VACCHI


    Full Text Available A total of 52 “rapido” (towed toothed beam gears trawls were monitored in late winter-summer of the 1999-2000 period to assess the R. asterias size structure at this time of higher yields as well as 36 fishing operations performed by “volantina” (trawl nets with fairly high vertical opening during distinct seasons on the continental shelf off the fishing harbour of Fiumicino (central western Italy to gain data also for that gear. Daily yields recorded for the only boat locally authorised to use “rapido” nets gave median values of 32.0 individuals and 24.35 kg vs. 2.5 rays and 2.80 kg for trawlers fishing at the same time. Comparison of the body sizes at which 50% of the skates had been found mature in our samples (265 gonads examined showed that most specimens caught by the “rapido” nets were in their juvenile stage. Examination of stomach contents from 129 skates confirmed previous reports that they mainly feed on crustaceans and bony fish and the role of the latter in the diet progressively increases as R. asterias specimens grow older and larger.

  2. Ecomorphological and taphonomic gradients in clypeasteroid-dominated echinoid assemblages along a mixed siliciclastic-carbonate shelf from the early Miocene of northern Sardinia, Italy

    Andrea Mancosu


    Full Text Available Clypeasteroid echinoids are widespread and abundant within Miocene sedimentary sequences of the Mediterranean area within both siliciclastic and carbonate deposits. Herein, three clypeasteroid-dominated echinoid assemblages from the mixed siliciclastic-carbonate succession of the Mores Formation (lower Miocene cropping out within the Porto Torres Basin (northern Sardinia are described. These assemblages were compared to previously described clypeasteroid-bearing deposits from the Miocene of northern Sardinia with the purpose of investigating their palaeoecology and taphonomy along a shelf gradient. These goals are accomplished by various methods including (i logging sedimentary facies, (ii analysing the functional morphology of sea urchin skeletons, (iii comparing the relative abundance of taxa and taphonomic features, and (iv studying associated fauna, flora, and trace fossils. The clypeasteroid-bearing deposits differ greatly with respect to echinoid diversity, accompanying fauna and flora, sedimentological signatures, and taphonomic features. They also show variations in depositional environments and the mechanism of formation of the deposits. Three different shelf settings are distinguished: littoral, inner sublittoral, and outer sublittoral environments. Furthermore, an ecomorphological gradient along the shelf is recognized with respect to echinoid taxa and their morphologies. This gradient ranges from shallow water to a moderately deep shelf and is interpreted with respect to both abiotic and biotic factors as well as the taphonomy of the echinoid tests.

  3. Tectonics vs. Climate efficiency in triggering detrital input in sedimentary basins: the Po Plain-Venetian-Adriatic Foreland Basin (Northern Italy)

    Amadori, Chiara; Di Giulio, Andrea; Toscani, Giovanni; Lombardi, Stefano; Milanesi, Riccardo; Panara, Yuri; Fantoni, Roberto


    The relative efficiency of tectonics respect to climate in triggering erosion of mountain belts is a classical but still open debate in geosciences. The fact that data both from tectonically active and inactive mountain regions in different latitudes, record a worldwide increase of sediment input to sedimentary basins during the last million years concomitantly with the cooling of global climate and its evolution toward the modern high amplitude oscillating conditions pushed some authors to conclude that Pliocene-Pleistocene climate has been more efficient than tectonics in triggering mountain erosion. Po Plain-Venetian-Adriatic Foreland System, made by the relatively independent Po Plain-Northern Adriatic Basin and Venetian-Friulian Basin, provides an ideal case of study to test this hypothesis and possibly quantify the difference between the efficiency of the two. In fact it is a relatively closed basin (i.e. without significant sediment escape) with a fairly continuous sedimentation (i.e. with a quite continuous sedimentary record) completely surrounded by collisional belts (Alps, Northern Apennines and Dinarides) that experienced only very weak tectonic activity since Calabrian time, i.e. when climate cooling and cyclicity increased the most. We present a quantitative reconstruction of the sediment flow delivered from the surrounding mountain belts to the different part of the basin during Pliocene-Pleistocene time. This flow was obtained through the 3D reconstruction of the Venetian-Friulian and Po Plain Northern Adriatic Basins architecture, performed by means of the seismic-based interpretation and time-to-depth conversion of six chronologically constrained surfaces (seismic and well log data from courtesy of ENI); moreover, a 3D decompaction of the sediment volume bounded by each couple of surfaces has been included in the workflow, in order to avoid compaction-related bias. The obtained results show in both Basins a rapid four-folds increase of the

  4. Extended phenotype description and new molecular findings in late onset glycogen storage disease type II: a northern Italy population study and review of the literature.

    Remiche, Gauthier; Ronchi, Dario; Magri, Francesca; Lamperti, Costanza; Bordoni, Andreina; Moggio, Maurizio; Bresolin, Nereo; Comi, Giacomo P


    Glycogen storage disease type II (GSDII) is a lysosomal storage disorder caused by acid alpha-1,4-glucosidase deficiency and associated with recessive mutations in its coding gene GAA. Few studies have provided so far a detailed phenotypical characterization in late onset GSDII (LO-GSDII) patients. Genotype-phenotype correlation has been previously attempted with controversial results. We aim to provide an in-depth description of a cohort (n = 36) of LO-GSDII patients coming from the north of Italy and compare our population's findings to the literature. We performed a clinical record-based retrospective and prospective study of our patients. LO-GSDII in our cohort covers a large variability of phenotype including subtle clinical presentation and did not differ significantly from previous data. In all patients, molecular analysis disclosed GAA mutations, five of them being novel. To assess potential genotype-phenotype correlations we divided IVS1-32-13T>G heterozygous patients into two groups following the severity of the mutations on the second allele. Our patients harbouring "severe" mutations (n = 21) presented a strong tendency to have more severe phenotypes and more disability, more severe phenotypes and more disability, higher prevalence of assisted ventilation and a shorter time of evolution to show it. The determination of prognostic factors is mandatory in order to refine the accuracy of prognostic information, to develop follow-up strategy and, more importantly, to improve the decision algorithm for enzyme replacement therapy administration. The demonstration of genotype-phenotype correlations could help to reach this objective. Clinical assessment homogeneity is required to overcome limitations due to the lack of power of most studies.

  5. Numerical insight into the seismic behavior of eight masonry towers in Northern Italy: FE pushover vs non-linear dynamic analyses

    Milani, Gabriele, E-mail:, E-mail:; Valente, Marco [Department of Architecture, Built Environment and Construction Engineering (ABC), Politecnico di Milano, Piazza Leonardo da Vinci 32, 20133 Milan (Italy)


    This study presents some FE results regarding the behavior under horizontal loads of eight existing masonry towers located in the North-East of Italy. The towers, albeit unique for geometric and architectural features, show some affinities which justify a comparative analysis, as for instance the location and the similar masonry material. Their structural behavior under horizontal loads is therefore influenced by geometrical issues, such as slenderness, walls thickness, perforations, irregularities, presence of internal vaults, etc., all features which may be responsible for a peculiar output. The geometry of the towers is deduced from both existing available documentation and in-situ surveys. On the basis of such geometrical data, a detailed 3D realistic mesh is conceived, with a point by point characterization of each single geometric element. The FE models are analysed under seismic loads acting along geometric axes of the plan section, both under non-linear static (pushover) and non-linear dynamic excitation assumptions. A damage-plasticity material model exhibiting softening in both tension and compression, already available in the commercial code Abaqus, is used for masonry. Pushover analyses are performed with both G1 and G2 horizontal loads distribution, according to Italian code requirements, along X+/− and Y+/− directions. Non-linear dynamic analyses are performed along both X and Y directions with a real accelerogram scaled to different peak ground accelerations. Some few results are presented in this paper. It is found that the results obtained with pushover analyses reasonably well fit expensive non-linear dynamic simulations, with a slightly less conservative trend.

  6. Forest condition and chemical characteristics of atmospheric depositions: research and monitoring network in Lombardy

    Flaminio DI GIROLAMO


    Full Text Available Since 1987, the Regional Forestry Board of Lombardy and the Water Research Institute of the National Research Council have been carrying out surveys of forest conditions and the response of the ecosystem to environmental factors. The study approach is based on a large number of permanent plots for extensive monitoring (Level 1. At this level, crown condition is assessed annually, and soil condition and the nutritional status of forests surveyed. Some of the permanent plots were selected for intensive monitoring (Level 2, focussing mainly on the impact of atmospheric pollution on forest ecosystems. Level 2 monitoring also includes increment analyses, ground vegetation assessment, atmospheric deposition, soil solution analyses and climatic observations. This paper summarises the main results of a pluriannual research, which provides a general picture of the state of forest health in the region and focuses on more detailed investigations, described as case studies. Modified wet and dry samplers which use a water surface to collect dry deposition were used in a pluriannual field campaign at five sites in alpine and prealpine areas, to measure the total atmospheric depositions and to evaluate the nitrogen and sulphate exceedances of critical loads. Throughfall and bulk precipitation chemistry were studied for five years (June 1994-May 1999 at two high elevation forest sites (Val Gerola and Val Masino which were known to differ in terms of tree health, as assessed by live crown condition. Results indicated a higher contribution from the dry deposition of N-NO3 -, N-NH4 + and H+ and considerable canopy leaching of Ca2+, K+ and weak organic acids at Val Gerola, where the symptoms of damage were more evident. In the area of Val Masino (SO, included since 1997 in the national CONECOFOR network, investigations focused on the effectiveness of the biological compartment in modifying fluxes of atmospheric elements, and on the role of nitrogen both as an

  7. Obesity nutritional aspects and life style from a survey on a sample of primary school pupils in the Pavia province (Northern Italy

    Marisa Arpesella


    Full Text Available

    Background: The increased risk of chronic diseases requires effective strategies to promote health, facilitating the adoption of proper life styles from childhood. In order to do that, the local health authority in Pavia has undertaken a pilot study with the aim of estimating the level of overweight and obese children in primary schools and of identifying the life styles that entail health risks.

    Methods: A cross-sectional study based on a sample of 460 children in their last year of primary school in the Province of Pavia was performed. Pupils were classified by Body Mass Index, and a face-to-face questionnaire about children’s use of time was administered. A multiple logistic regression analysis has been applied in order to identify risks or preventive health factors linked to physical activity and eating habits.

    Results: 12.6% of the children were obese and 26.3% overweight, with the percentage of obesity nearly double in those who do not practice organized sports activities at least once a week, in those who don’t have breakfast in the morning and in those who don’t spend their free time in movement games. From a multiple logistic regression it results that the risk of being obese is twice and three times higher for the children living respectively in medium and small towns than for the ones living in large towns.

    Conclusions: In the Province of Pavia the prevalence of overweight and obese 10-year-old children exceed the data reported in recent studies all over Italy. The life styles that entail obesity risks are significantly linked both to eating habits and to physical activity: living in middle- and small sized towns and not having breakfast before going to school emerge as risk factors, while practicing movement games in the free time after school appears to be a protecting factor.

  8. Tectono-sedimentary evolution of an extensional basin revealed by a combined photo-geological and field-mapping approach. The Montefalco Basin (Northern Apennines, Italy)

    Bucci, Francesco; Mirabella, Francesco; Santangelo, Michele; Cardinali, Mauro; Guzzetti, Fausto


    Active extensional basins are important since their sedimentary infills and bounding tectonic structures provide: i) sinks with preservation potential for sedimentary and fossil records of past changes in climate and sediment/water supply, ii) information on the growth, activity, decay and death of normal faults, iii) vast economic reserves of hydrocarbons, water and minerals. Unfortunately, quaternary extensional basins, especially if located in humid and temperate climate environments, are often characterized by extensively cultivated areas, homogeneous terrains and quite flat morphologies. Furthermore, they commonly host human settlements, together with roads, economic and industrial infrastructures, with a consequent limited availability of good outcrops. Such a limitation can (often severely) hamper an adequate mapping of the sedimentary infill. Therefore alternative methodological approaches (such as aerial photographs interpretation, API) are needed to integrate heterogeneous and incomplete datasets. This contribution presents an updated photo-geological map of a Quaternary extensional basin in Central Italy, the Montefalco Basin. This basin developed in a continental environment characterized by clayey-sandy lacustrine and fluvial sequences (late Pliocene - early Pleistocene) underlying more recent coarse grained deposits related to alluvial fan environment (early-to-late Pleistocene) and younger palustrine deposits (late Pleistocene). Since the late Pleistocene, regional uplift and local tectonics led to the end of deposition in the Montefalco basin, which experienced a diffuse incision and the modification of the drainage network, in response to the W-to-E migration of active faulting and tectonic subsidence. The new photo-geological map represents an important improvement compared to the existing data, since it provides unprecedented and spatially distributed information on the geometry of the continental deposits and on the tectonic structures affecting

  9. Detailed rock failure susceptibility mapping in steep rocky coasts by means of non-contact geostructural surveys: the case study of the Tigullio Gulf (Eastern Liguria, Northern Italy

    P. De Vita


    Full Text Available In this study, an engineering geological analysis for the assessment of the rock failure susceptibility of a high, steep, rocky coast was developed by means of non-contact geostructural surveys. The methodology was applied to a 6-km coastal cliff located in the Gulf of Tigullio (Northern Tyrrhenian Sea between Rapallo and Chiavari.

    The method is based on the geostructural characterisation of outcropping rock masses through meso- and macroscale stereoscopic analyses of digital photos that were taken continuously from a known distance from the coastline. The results of the method were verified through direct surveys of accessible sample areas. The rock failure susceptibility of the coastal sector was assessed by analysing the fundamental rock slope mechanisms of instability and the results were implemented into a Geographic Information System (GIS.

    The proposed method is useful for rock failure susceptibility assessments in high, steep, rocky coastal areas, where accessibility is limited due to cliffs or steep slopes. Moreover, the method can be applied to private properties or any other area where a complete and systematic analysis of rock mass structural features cannot be achieved.

    Compared to direct surveys and to other non-contact methods based on digital terrestrial photogrammetry, the proposed procedure provided good quality data of the structural features of the rock mass at a low cost. Therefore, the method could be applied to similar coastal areas with a high risk of rock failure occurrence.

  10. Highly extended terrains, lateral segmentation of the substratum, and basin development: The middle-late Miocene Radicondoli Basin (inner northern Apennines, Italy)

    Brogi, Andrea; Liotta, Domenico


    This paper deals with the evolution of sedimentary basins not delimited by normal faults, with a substratum characterized by an upward concave shape and with infilling sediments synclinally deformed. We describe the middle-late Miocene Radicondoli Basin, representing an example of such bowl-shaped basins. Its tectonic origin is controversial, being related both to compression and extension; these opposite interpretations bear significant consequences on the geodynamic context in which the inner northern Apennines developed during the middle-late Miocene. The results of our structural studies, carried out in the substratum and infilling sediments, indicate that the Radicondoli Basin is an example of a hanging wall basin developed in an extensional setting. Extensional tectonics determined the lateral segmentation of the substratum competent levels (i.e., Tuscan Nappe and Verrucano Group) and the consequent collapse of overlying less competent levels (i.e., the Ligurian units) with the formation of a bowl-shaped tectonic depression. Here, the syntectonic sediments (Serravallian-late Messinian) are deformed in a large syncline, characterized by minor gravity-driven folds, with vergences toward the depocenter and traces of their axial planes parallel to the basin margins. This paper highlights the role of the competence contrast during the postcollisional tectonic evolution and the influence of substratum lateral segmentation for the accommodation of syntectonic sediments.

  11. Budget impact analysis of sofosbuvir-based regimens for the treatment of HIV/HCV-coinfected patients in northern Italy: a multicenter regional simulation

    Cenderello G


    Full Text Available Giovanni Cenderello,1 Stefania Artioli,2 Claudio Viscoli,3 Ambra Pasa,4 Mauro Giacomini,5 Barbara Giannini,5 Chiara Dentone,6 Laura Ambra Nicolini,3 Giovanni Cassola,1 Antonio Di Biagio31Infectious Diseases Unit EO, Ospedali Galliera, Genoa, 2Infectious Diseases Unit, ASL-5 Spezzina, La Spezia, 3Infectious Diseases Unit, AOU San Martino, IST, Genoa University, Genoa, 4IT Unit, Ospedali Galliera, Genoa, 5Department of Informatics, Bioengineering, Robotics and System Engineering (DIBRIS, University of Genoa, Genova, 6Infectious Diseases Unit, ASL-1 Imperiese, Sanremo, Imperia, ItalyObjectives: Chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV is a leading cause of hospitalization and death in populations coinfected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV. Sofosbuvir (SOF is a pan-genotypic drug that should be combined with other agents as an oral treatment for HCV. We performed a 5-year horizon budget impact analysis of SOF-based regimens for the management of HIV/HCV-coinfected patients.Methods: A multicenter, prospective evaluation was conducted, involving four Italian Infectious Diseases Departments (Galliera, San Martino, Sanremo, and La Spezia. All 1,005 genotype-coinfected patients (30% cirrhotics under observation were considered (patients in all disease-stages were considered: chronic hepatitis C, cirrhosis, transplant, hepatocellular carcinoma. Disease stage costs per patient were collected; the expected disease progression in the absence of treatment and sustained virological response (SVR success rate for SOF-based regimens were calculated based on the literature and expert opinion. Drug prices were based on what the National Health Service paid for them. The comparison of "no treatment" disease progression costs versus the economic impact of SOF-based regimens was investigated.Results: Over the following 5 years, the disease progression scenario resulted in direct costs of approximately €54 million. Assuming an SVR success rate of 90%, average SOF

  12. The influence of lithology, land cover, road network and slope gradient in the landslides triggered during the period November 2008 - February 2009 in northern Tuscany (Italy)

    Segoni, Samuele; Mucci, Alessandra; Casagli, Nicola


    In the provinces of Lucca and Pistoia (Tuscany, Central Italy) 650 landslides (mainly shallow rapid slides and debris flows) were registered by Civil Protection during the period spanning from November 2008 to February 2009. During that period both provinces were struck by widespread precipitations: in November three distinct brief but very intense events brought the monthly precipitation well above the mean value, while the month of December was conversely characterized by heavy and prolonged precipitations whose cumulative amount doubled the monthly mean value. During January and February brief and intense precipitations struck again diffusively the whole studied area. As a consequence of such a prolonged period of abundant rainfall, hundreds of landslides occurred in the provinces of Lucca and Pistoia damaging private and public buildings, assets and infrastructures. The state of emergency was declared by the National Civil Protection from December to February. Rainfall has been without doubt the triggering factor of the landslides, but can some predisposing feature be identified? The answer is decisive for improving risk assessments and for developing effective emergency plans for civil protection purposes. For example, rainfall thresholds can be easily used to set up warning systems that can forecast the time of occurrence of landslides but such methods have a very coarse spatial resolution: the identification of predisposing elements could be helpful to identify the most risky locations in order to reduce the spatial uncertainty. From the Provincial and Regional Civil Protection archives many information about the occurred landslides were gathered and organized into a geographic database making use of a GIS system. Data include the exact location and day of occurrence of the landslides and their type. By means of a GIS analysis, the landslides database was superimposed to various thematic maps (geology, land cover, road network, slope gradient) in order to

  13. Comparison of radioactivity data measured in PM10 aerosol samples at two elevated stations in northern Italy during the Fukushima event.

    Tositti, Laura; Brattich, Erika; Cinelli, Giorgia; Previti, Alberto; Mostacci, Domiziano


    The follow-up of Fukushima radioactive plume resulting from the 11th March 2011 devastating tsunami is discussed for two Italian stations in the northern Apennines: Mt. Cimone (Modena) and Montecuccolino (Bologna). Radioactivity data collected at both stations are described, including comparison between local natural background of airborne particulate and artificial radioactivity referable to the arrival of the radioactive plume and its persistence and evolution. Analysis of back-trajectories was used to confirm the arrival of artificial radionuclides following atmospheric transport and processing. The Fukushima plume was first detected on 3rd April 2011 when high volume sampling revealed the presence of the artificial radionuclides (131)I, (137)Cs and (134)Cs. The highest activity concentrations of these nuclides were detected on 5th April 2011 at the Montecuccolino site. Fukushima radioactivity data at the two stations were usually comparable, suggesting a good vertical mixing of the plume; discrepancies were occasional and attributed to different occurrence of wet removal, typically characterized by a scattered spatial pattern. To understand the relevance to the local population of the extra dose due to the Fukushima plume, atmospheric activities of the related artificial nuclides were compared to those of the main natural radionuclides in ambient particulate, and found to be lower by over one order of magnitude. Radiation doses referable to Fukushima, maximized for a whole year occurrence at the highest activity level observed at our stations in the weeks affected by the Japanese plume, were estimated at 1.1 μSv/year. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Seep carbonates and chemosynthetic coral communities in the Early Paleocene alpine accretionary wedge: evidences from the Bocco Shale (Internal Liguride ophiolitic sequence, Northern Apennine, Italy)

    Pandolfi, Luca; Boschi, Chiara; Luvisi, Edoardo; Alessandro, Ellero; Marroni, Michele; Meneghini, Francesca


    In Northern Apennines, the Internal Liguride units are characterized by an ophiolite sequence that represents the stratigraphic base of a Late Jurassic-Early Paleocene sedimentary cover. The Bocco Shale represents the youngest deposit recognized in the sedimentary cover of the ophiolite sequence, sedimented just before the inception of subduction-related deformation history. The Bocco Shale has been interpreted as a fossil example of deposits related to the frontal tectonic erosion of the alpine accretionary wedge slope. The frontal tectonic erosion resulted in a large removal of material from the accretionary wedge front reworked as debris flows and slide deposits sedimented on the lower plate above the trench deposits. These trench-slope deposits may have been successively deformed and metamorphosed during the following accretion processes. The frontal tectonic erosion can be envisaged as a common process during the convergence-related evolution of the Ligure-Piemontese oceanic basin in the Late Cretaceous-Early Tertiary time span. In the uppermost Internal Liguride tectonic unit (Portello Unit of Pandolfi and Marroni. 1997), that crops-out in Trebbia Valley, several isolated blocks of authigenic carbonates, unidentificated corals and intrabasinal carbonatic arenites have been recognized inside the fine-grained sediments that dominate the Early Paleocene Lavagnola Fm. (cfr. Bocco Shale Auctt.). The preliminary data on stable isotopes from blocks of authigenic carbonates (up to 1 m thick and 3 m across) and associated corals archive a methane signatures in their depleted carbon isotope pattern (up to δ13C -30‰ PDB) and suggest the presence of chemosynthetic paleocommunities. The seep-carbonates recognized at the top of Internal Liguride succession (cfr. Bocco Shale Auctt.) occur predominantly as blocks in very thick mudstone-dominated deposits and probably developed in an environment dominated by the expulsion of large volume of cold methane-bearing fluids

  15. Emergence of Escherichia coli Sequence Type 131 (ST131) and ST3948 with KPC-2, KPC-3 and KPC-8 carbapenemases from a Long-Term Care and Rehabilitation Facility (LTCRF) in Northern Italy.

    Piazza, Aurora; Caltagirone, Mariasofia; Bitar, Ibrahim; Nucleo, Elisabetta; Spalla, Melissa; Fogato, Elena; D'Angelo, Roberto; Pagani, Laura; Migliavacca, Roberta


    Aim of the study was to characterize KPC-producing Escherichia coli (KPC-Ec) clinical isolates among a Northern Italy Long-Term Care and Rehabilitation Facility (LTCRF) residents. Thirteen consecutive non repeated MDR E. coli isolates showing ertapenem Minimum Inhibitory Concentrations (MICs) >0.5 mg/L, collected during the period March 2011 - May 2013 from ASP "Redaelli" inpatients, were investigated. The bla KPC/CTX-M/SHV/TEM/OXA genes were identified by PCR and sequencing. KPC-Ec isolates underwent phylotyping, Pulsed-Field Gel Electrophoresis (PFGE), multilocus sequence typing (MLST) and repetitive sequence-based PCR (rep-PCR) profiling. Incompatibility groups analysis and conjugation were also performed. Eleven out of 13 isolates, resulted bla KPC-type positive, were consistently resistant to third generation cephalosporins, fluoroquinolones and trimethoprim-sulphametoxazole (84.6 %), retaining susceptibility to colistin (EUCAST guidelines). At least n = 4/11 of KPC-Ec patients received ≥48 h of meropenem therapy. Sequencing identified 9 bla KPC-2, 1 bla KPC-3 and 1 bla KPC-8 determinants. KPC-Ec plasmids belonged to IncF group (FIIk replicon); conjugation confirmed bla KPC/TEM-1/OXA-9 genes transferability for 10 KPC-Ec. Although three pulsotypes (A, B, C) were identified, all KPC-Ec belonged to phylogenetic group B2. Clone B (B-B5) caused an outbreak of infection involving nine inpatients at five wards. Rep-PCR showed relatedness for seven representative KPC-Ec isolates. Here we report a LTCRF outbreak caused by a ST131-B2 E. coli associated with bla KPC-2 and bla KPC-8 genes, and the emergence of the new ST3948. Elderly people with co-morbidities are at risk for ST131 colonization. KPC-Ec clones local monitoring appears essential both to avoid their spreading among healthcare settings, and to improve therapeutic choices for LTCRF residents.

  16. Outcomes and cost evaluation of the first two rounds of a colorectal cancer screening program based on immunochemical fecal occult blood test in northern Italy.

    Parente, F; Boemo, C; Ardizzoia, A; Costa, M; Carzaniga, P; Ilardo, A; Moretti, R; Cremaschini, M; Parente, E M; Pirola, M E


    Colorectal cancer (CRC) screening aims to reduce mortality by detecting cancers at an early stage and removing adenomatous polyps at an acceptable cost. The aim of the current study were to assess the outcomes and costs of the first two biennial rounds of a population-based CRC screening program using the immunochemical fecal occult blood test (i-FOBT) in a northern Italian province. All residents aged 50 - 69 years were invited to take part in a biennial screening program using a 1-day i-FOBT, followed by colonoscopy in positive individuals. The i-FOBT uptake, compliance to colonoscopy, detection rate for cancer or advanced adenomas according to age and sex, and direct cost analysis were carried out separately for the 1st and 2nd rounds of screening. In 78 083 (1st round) and 81 619 (2nd round) individuals who were invited to screening, the participation rates were 49.7 % and 54.4 % and i-FOBT positivity rates were 6.2 % and 5.8 %, respectively. Detection rates for cancer and advanced adenomas were lower in the 2nd screening compared with the 1st one (1.6‰ vs. 2.5‰ for cancers and 15.8‰ vs. 17.9‰ for advanced adenomas, respectively), whereas positive predictive values for cancer and advanced adenoma were similar in both rounds. In 165 adenocarcinomas detected, 52 % were Dukes' stage A and 21 % were stage B. All cost indicators were slightly higher in the 1st round of screening compared with the 2nd. The direct cost per cancer or advanced adenoma detection was similar in the two rounds (€ 1252 and € 1260, respectively). Compliance and diagnostic yield of i-FOBT screening were satisfactory. Most detected cancers were at a very early stage. Program costs were reasonable and did not increase with repeat screening. Screening could contribute to decreasing the cost of CRC care by improving the stage at diagnosis. © Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.

  17. New morpho-stratigraphic constraints for the evolution of the alluvial fan system along the northern slopes of the Taburno-Camposauro Mountains (Calore River basin, Southern Italy)

    Leone, Natalia; Amato, Vincenzo; Aucelli, Pietro P. C.; Cesarano, Massimo; Filocamo, Francesca; Petrosino, Paola; Rosskopf, Carmen M.; Valente, Ettore; Giralt, Santiago; Casciello, Emilio


    The Lower Calore River Valley is a morphostructural depression located in the inner sector of the Campanian Apennine, between the Taburno-Camposauro and the Matese carbonate massifs. The river is the main left tributary of the Volturno River, it has a meandering channel partially structural-controlled. Numerous morphotectonic clues and historical seismicity data suggest that this part of the Apennine chain was particularly active during the late-Quaternary. In detail, the valley is E-W oriented and presents an asymmetry of the opposed valley slopes. The left side, corresponding to the northern flank of the Camposauro massif, is characterized by a steep slope (70°-35°), partially controlled by a ~E-W oriented fault system, and by a wide less-inclined piedmont aggradation zone. The latter started growing since middle Pleistocene, with the deposition of alluvial fans and slope deposits over the well cemented early Pleistocene breccias of Laiano Synthem. The alluvial fan deposition has been active until present giving rise to three main generations of alluvial fans. The right side of the valley, instead, is characterized by seven orders of fluvial terraces, both of erosional and depositional origin. The quaternary morpho-stratigraphic evolution of alluvial fans and fluvial terraces has been strongly conditioned by the interaction of tectonic phases and climatic variations. A detailed geomorphological study (1:5.000 in scale) was carried out with the aim to map the main depositional and erosional fluvial landforms and to identify the main tectonic lineaments of the area. A detailed field survey allowed to better define the stratigraphic and paleoenvironmental context in which the alluvial deposits developed and also to find chrono-stratigraphic markers. Tephra-stratigraphic analyses were performed on pyroclastic deposits interbedded into the alluvial fan and fluvial successions. At the moment the age of the first generation of alluvial fans is still under

  18. A 3-D velocity model for earthquake location from combined geological and geophysical data: a case study from the TABOO near fault observatory (Northern Apennines, Italy)

    Latorre, Diana; Lupattelli, Andrea; Mirabella, Francesco; Trippetta, Fabio; Valoroso, Luisa; Lomax, Anthony; Di Stefano, Raffaele; Collettini, Cristiano; Chiaraluce, Lauro


    Accurate hypocenter location at the crustal scale strongly depends on our knowledge of the 3D velocity structure. The integration of geological and geophysical data, when available, should contribute to a reliable seismic velocity model in order to guarantee high quality earthquake locations as well as their consistency with the geological structure. Here we present a 3D, P- and S-wave velocity model of the Upper Tiber valley region (Northern Apennines) retrieved by combining an extremely robust dataset of surface and sub-surface geological data (seismic reflection profiles and boreholes), in situ and laboratory velocity measurements, and earthquake data. The study area is a portion of the Apennine belt undergoing active extension where a set of high-angle normal faults is detached on the Altotiberina low-angle normal fault (ATF). From 2010, this area hosts a scientific infrastructure (the Alto Tiberina Near Fault Observatory, TABOO;, consisting of a dense array of multi-sensor stations, devoted to studying the earthquakes preparatory phase and the deformation processes along the ATF fault system. The proposed 3D velocity model is a layered model in which irregular shaped surfaces limit the boundaries between main lithological units. The model has been constructed by interpolating depth converted seismic horizons interpreted along 40 seismic reflection profiles (down to 4s two way travel times) that have been calibrated with 6 deep boreholes (down to 5 km depth) and constrained by detailed geological maps and structural surveys data. The layers of the model are characterized by similar rock types and seismic velocity properties. The P- and S-waves velocities for each layer have been derived from velocity measurements coming from both boreholes (sonic logs) and laboratory, where measurements have been performed on analogue natural samples increasing confining pressure in order to simulate crustal conditions. In order to test the 3D velocity

  19. The role of dunes in contrasting saltwater intrusion in coastal areas; a case study in the southern Po Plain Adriatic coast (Ravenna, Northern Italy)

    Marconi, V.; Antonellini, M.; Balugani, E.; Minchio, A.; Gabbianelli, G.


    area below the coastal dunes and that the surface water is all brackish to salty. Where compared with the elevation map, in fact, the electrical conductivity data (a proxy for salinity) seem to be strongly controlled by topography (even small variations). In the study area, the topographic reliefs consist of several rows of dunes, the topographic lows are artificial ditches and ponds or dune slacks. The farmland is about at the same level of the sea. In the northern part of the study area, the fresh groundwater lens in the backshore zone is missing, as dunes were eroded (down to 1.5 m above m.s.l.) and a series of saltwater ponds (about 1 m below m.s.l.) are present right behind the active dunes. The central part of the study area is characterised by the presence of a 3 m high active dune and of a large pond in the innermost side of the backshore. In this case, there is a narrow fresh groundwater lens in the active dunes area, whereas inland the aquifer is completely salty up to the agricultural fields. The southern area has the best preserved and tallest dunes (more than 4 m) and do not contain any pond. Here, the fresh groundwater lens is wider than everywhere else and the aquifer becomes salty only where the drainage ditches are causing upconing of deeper salty groundwater. Our study has recognized the importance of coastal dunes in counteracting saltwater intrusion in the phreatic aquifer. Therefore, it is important to consider measures and interventions in order to preserve the integrity of the dunes not only for the purposes of avoiding shoreline erosion and coastal ecosystem destruction but also for freshwater resources protection. On the other hand, in low lying coastal areas, drainage and the construction of ponds may enhance seawater upconing.

  20. Pollen-related allergy in Italy.

    D'Amato, G; Dal Bo, S; Bonini, S


    Pollen-related allergies are very common in Italy and pollinosis is the commonest allergic disease. The type of allergenic plants and the prevalence of hay fever varies among regions. In the Mediterranean area there are characteristic climatic conditions (mildness of winter, summer dryness) that facilitate the growth of a typical vegetation with its associated various types of allergenic pollen grains, some of them very different from those of central and northern Europe. Italy has a central position in the Mediterranean basin, but because of its geographic characteristics, there are different climatic aspects with different vegetation between northern, central, and southern areas. Gramineae are the most common allergenic plants in northern and central Italy, where more than 60% of patients with pollinosis are grass-pollen sensitive. Parietaria is the most important pollinating plant in southern Italy and Liguria. Olea europaea, the olive tree with cultivation widespread in the whole Mediterranean basin, is responsible for frequently severe pollinosis, particularly in some regions of the southern Italy.


    E. Oliverio


    Full Text Available The study provides data on the prevalence of Listeria monocytogenes in ready-to-eat food samples collected by Lombardy region health authorities and analyzed by Department of Food Microbiology, Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale della Lombardia e dell’Emilia Romagna. From the total of 503 food samples analyzed, the pathogen was detected in 85 (16,9%. In particular it was highlighted in 8/152 (5,3% meat products, in 5/245 (2% dairy products and in 42/106 (39,6% fishery products. Given the considerable public health implications, the study confirms that a well-planned program of listeriosis surveillance should be enforced to suitably estimate the burden of disease and to prevent foodborne outbreaks.

  2. [A method for identifying people with a high level of frailty by using a population database, Varese, Italy].

    Pisani, Salvatore; Gambino, Maria; Balconi, Lorena; Degli Stefani, Cristina; Speziali, Sabina; Bonarrigo, Domenico


    Since over 10 years, the Lombardy Region (Italy) has developed a system for classifying all persons registered with the healthcare system (database of persons registered with a general practitioner), according to their use of major healthcare services (hospitalizations, outpatient consultations, pharmaceutical) and whether they are exempt from copayment fees for disease-specific medications and healthcare services. The present study was conducted by the local health authorities of the province of Varese (Lombardy region, Italy) with 894.039 persons registered in the database of whom 258.770 (28.9%) with at least one chronic condition, 104.731 (11.7%) with multiple chronic conditions and 195.296 (21.8%) elderly persons. The aim was to evaluate death rates in different subgroups of patients entered in the database, including persons with chronic diseases and elderly persons. Standardized mortality rates were calculated for the year 2012. Compared with the general population, relative risk for mortality was 4,1 (95% confidence Intervals 4,0-4,2) in the elderly and 1,3 (95% confidence intervals 1,3-1,4) in chronic patients. This confirms that elderly persons have a higher level of frailty with respect to patients with chronic conditions. Mortality was found to be 28 times higher in elderly persons over 74 years of age, affected by high cost conditions such as cancer and cardiac disease, with respect to the general population.

  3. Thermal Anomalies and Fluid Geochemistry Framework In Occurrence of The 2000-2001 Nizza Monferrato Seismic Sequence (northern Italy): Episodic Changes In The Fault Zone Heat Flow Or Chemical Mixing Phenomena ?

    Quattrocchi, F.; Favara, R.; Capasso, G.; Pizzino, L.; Bencini, R.; Cinti, D.

    Soon after and soon before the August 21, 2000 earthquake (Ml = 5.2), occurred at 7:14 pm, in the Nizza Monferrato area (Piemonte, Northern Italy) several episodes of heating up (reaching 30 C from a normal regional background around 10oC) affecting groundwater from wells and springs were recorded. The area affected by the temperature uprising in the shallow aquifers is around 20 Km x 30 Km wide, elongated in a N-S direction (the same evidenced by the strike-slip left -lateral focal mechanism), from Incisa Scapaccino to Nizza Monferrato towns. Water temperatures of some wells remained anomalous, lasting for 3-4 months, returning to normal values very slowly. Also in concomitance with the Ml = 4.0 event, occurred on August 2001 in the same area, similar phenomena were observed. We performed geochemical and hydrogeological surveys (around 40 sites as a whole were selected for chemical and isotopic analyses and the hottest wells several times, in a yearly period) to understand the causes of this temperature uprising also in relation to the presence of the Acqui Terme thermal spring (70 C) located at 30 Km o Southward. On field we measured temperature, pH, Eh, electrical conductivity, and 222Rn. Moreover major elements (Ca, Mg, Na, K, Cl, SO4), minor elements (NH4 e NO3, PO4, Li, B, SiO2, F, Br, Sr), and trace elements (Fe, Mn, As, Sb, Hg, U) as well as H, O, C isotopic ratios were analyzed in laboratory. Dissolved gases water analyzed selecting 9 sites. The collected data showed that, apart from the noteworthy changes in the well temperatures, no peculiar variations in fluid geochemistry occurred in time. On the basis of the experimental geochemical evidences, the work focuses on the geochemical and physico-chemical trends, the isotopic analyses and the anomalous- episodic change of the heat flow in an "activated" fault zoneas the Bacino Terziario Piemontese one. The "frictional heating" process, the "stress-driven phase transitions" and episodic variations in the

  4. The Southern Lombardy and commercial relations in the Mediterranean area: the case of Salerno

    Giuseppe Gianluca Cicco


    Full Text Available The aim of this paper is to recover the written testimonies – both narrative and documentary sources – and also archaeological evidences about the role of Lombard Salerno in the Mediterranean commerces between VIIIth and XIth centuries, beginning from the regency of the Beneventan prince Arechi II who, after the Frank conquest of the Lombard kingdom, developed the economy and the urban structure of the maritime city. In this text we tried also to examine the real existence of a port in Salerno for the early medieval centuries and the location of the markets in the city and in the neighboring territory. Further investigations regards the commercial activism – rather modest – of Lombard Salerno in the exchanges with the near Byzantine provinces, the Saracen colonies in the peninsular South Italy and Sicily.

  5. Bronze decoration for chariots in Northern Italy

    Margherita Bolla


    Full Text Available Si propone un censimento delle attestazioni di decorazione in bronzo per carri in Italia settentrionale, limitando la ricerca agli elementi figurati. L’indagine, per quanto presumibilmente non esaustiva, ha condotto a un considerevole aumento delle testimonianze note (ora una cinquantina, consentendo alcune osservazioni su botteghe di produzione, proprietari, iconografia, cronologia.

  6. Healthcare usage and economic impact of non-treated obesity in Italy: findings from a retrospective administrative and clinical database analysis

    Colao, Annamaria; Lucchese, Marcello; D'Adamo, Monica; Savastano, Silvia; Facchiano, Enrico; Veronesi, Chiara; Blini, Valerio; Degli Esposti, Luca


    Objectives Investigate the prevalence of obesity in Italy and examine its resource consumption and economic impact on the Italian national healthcare system (NHS). Design Retrospective, observational and real-life study. Setting Data from three health units from Northern (Bergamo, Lombardy), Central (Grosseto, Tuscany) and Southern (Naples, Campania) Italy. Participants All patients aged ≥18 years with at least one recorded body mass index (BMI) measurement between 1 January 2009 and 31 December 2012 were included. Interventions Information retrieved from the databases included primary care data, medical prescriptions, specialist consultations and hospital discharge records from 2009–2013. Costs associated with these data were also calculated. Data are presented for two time periods (1 year after BMI measurement and study end). Primary and secondary outcome measures Primary—to estimate health resources consumption and the associated economic impact on the Italian NHS. Secondary—the prevalence and characteristics of subjects by BMI category. Results 20 159 adult subjects with at least one documented BMI measurement. Subjects with BMI ≥30 kg/m2 were defined as obese. The prevalence of obesity was 22.2% (N=4471) and increased with age. At the 1-year observation period, obese subjects who did not receive treatment for their obesity experienced longer durations of hospitalisation (median length: 5 days vs 3 days), used more prescription drugs (75.0% vs 57.7%), required more specialised outpatient healthcare (mean number: 5.3 vs 4.4) and were associated with greater costs, primarily owing to prescription drugs and hospital admissions (mean annual cost per year per patient: €460.6 vs €288.0 for drug prescriptions, €422.7 vs € 279.2 for hospitalisations and €283.2 vs €251.7 for outpatient care), compared with normal weight subjects. Similar findings were observed for the period up to data cut-off (mean follow-up of 2.7


    Leroy, Stéphanie


    This provenance study concerns the trade understanding in the Middle Ages of iron objects originally from specific ironmaking processes linked to the use of manganese rich ores. We were particularly interested in the case studies of the Ariège (French Pyrenees) and the Lombardy (Italian Alps) areas, two separate geographic areas that held a major place in the medieval economy of their region. This work deals with three specific historical questions. The first part is to clarify the trade rout...

  8. Robotic surgery in Italy national survey (2011).

    Santoro, Eugenio; Pansadoro, Vito


    Robotic surgery in Italy has become a clinical reality that is gaining increasing acceptance. As of 2011 after the United States, Italy together with Germany is the country with the largest number of active Robotic centers, 46, and da Vinci Robots installed, with at least 116 operators already trained. The number of interventions performed in Italy in 2011 exceeded 6,000 and in 2010 were 4,784, with prevalence for urology, general surgery and gynecology, however these interventions have also begun to be applied in other fields such as cervicofacial, cardiothoracic and pediatric surgery. In Italy Robotic centers are mostly located in Northern Italy, while in the South there are only a few centers, and four regions are lacking altogether. Of the 46 centers which were started in 1999, the vast majority is still operational and almost half handle over 200 cases a year. The quality of the work is also especially high with large diffusion of radical prostatectomy in urology and liver resection and colic in general surgery. The method is very well accepted among operators, over 80 %, and among patients, over 95 %. From the analysis of world literature and a survey carried out in Italy, Robotic surgery, which at the moment could be better defined as telesurgery, represents a significant advantage for operators and a consistent gain for the patient. However, it still has important limits such as high cost and non-structured training of operators.

  9. Study of 138 Neisseria meningitidis strains isolated from blood or cerebrospinal fluid in Lombardy between 2007 and 2010

    Laura Daprai


    Full Text Available Neisseria meningitidis, Streptococcus pneumoniae, and Haemophilus influenzae type b cause the majority of cases of bacterial septicaemia in children and young adults. Disease epidemiology is evolving rapidly due to the introduction of vaccines and changing in bacterial antibiotic-resistance patterns. (Asymptomatic nasopharyngeal colonization with Neisseria meningitides occurs in 5-10% of adult. The aim of this study was to calculate the frequency of each serogroup of this pathogens involved in invasive infection and to study susceptibility to antibiotics of these strains. Between March 2007 and June 2010 we received, from 43 hospitals of Lombardy, 138 strains of Neisseria meningitidis, from 138 patients aged (2-80yrs. The most frequent serogroup was B (58%, followed by serogroup C (34%, serogroup G (4% and W 135 (2%. Serogroup A end X accounted for 1% of invasive infection, each. We observed a decrease in susceptibility towards penicillin in 38% of strains. In addition we studied, by REP- PCR, genotype of 9 strains selected on the basis of epidemiological data.Among these strains, 3 different clusters according to the 3 small epidemic outbreaks occurred between June and September 2009, were recognised. Seven of these strains, although belonged to the same serogroup, brought about two different clusters. The present findings demonstrated that phenotypic data are not sufficient to define epidemic clusters, therefore molecular genotyping is required.

  10. Home-Based Telemanagement in Advanced COPD: Who Uses it Most? Real-Life Study in Lombardy.

    Vitacca, Michele; Fumagalli, Lia Paola; Borghi, Gabriella; Colombo, Fausto; Castelli, Alberto; Scalvini, Simonetta; Masella, Cristina


    Current evidence indicates that the benefits of tele-health may not be uniform across all patients. Therefore, to understand what specific variables influence use of home-based telemanagement in COPD, we conducted this retrospective study.  A 6-month home-based telemanagement program (HTP) was offered to 1,074 COPD patients over a 4-year period. Multivarible linear regression analysis was used to identify predictors of HTP use/week (phone calls and specialist consultations) among all variables: clinical (body mass index, co-morbidities, HTP prescription not following an exacerbation, long-term oxygen therapy use, COPD severity, hospital readmissions, exacerbations and death), socio-demographic (sex, age, place of abode), smoking history, arterial blood gases (ABG), and specialist/general practitioner (GP) urgent need. Logistic regression was conducted to predict relapses/hospitalizations risk as well as the disease impact (COPD Assessment Test, CAT) at the end of the program.  Presence of relapses (p HTP-use. Smoking history (OR 1.542 [IC 95% 1.069-2.217], p = 0.020), specialist (OR 2.895 [2.144-3.910], p HTP prescription (p HTP in Lombardy shows that relapsers, people requiring several ABGs and urgent GP visits are the patient subgroup most likely to consume telemanagement services (scheduled and unscheduled). We propose a patient 'identikit' to improve prioritization for HTP prescriptions.

  11. Classification of non native tree species in Adda Park (Italy) through multispectral and multitemporal surveys from UAV

    Pinto, Livio; Sona, Giovanna; Biffi, Andrea; Dosso, Paolo; Passoni, Daniele; Baracani, Matteo


    The project ITACA (Innovation, Technologies, Actions to Contrast Alloctonous species) rises from the need of protecting natural habitats in parks where native vegetation is threaten by the always increasing spread of alloctonous species. Starting from preliminary results obtained in previous experimental studies performed inside Adda Park (Lombardy Region, Northern Italy) the aim of the project is a further development and optimization of some tested techniques and procedures. In the frame of ITACA project, that involves Politecnico di Milano and some local enterprises, 11 separate areas of the Adda Park, globally covering 50 hectars, will be surveyed with UAV-borne multispectral sensors through different seasons (summer, autumn and spring). The summer and autumn flights have already been realized by the fixed wing UAV Sensefly SwingletCAM mounted with a Canon Ixus 220HS, producing real color images (RGB), and an identical camera, modified to produce false color images (NIR-RG). The 'multisensor-multitemporal' flights have been planned with high longitudinal and transversal overlaps, always in the range 60% to 80%, and a GSD of around 4 cm. Presignalized artificial points or natural elements have been surveyed on the ground by GPS RTK Trimble 5700, making use a Network GPS ervice (NRTK). For each survey two flights have been realized, one with the standard camera, and the second one with the NIR-modified one, with the double purpose of: - producing a multispectral orthomosaic, formed by the four bands NIR-R-G-B, coregistered. - increasing the coverage of the area, yielding in the block adjustment phase a more robust solution and a higher metric accuracy of digital products (digital orthomosaics). The first two flights have been scheduled taking into account information on the phenology of the species under observation (both native or invasive) given by expert botanists involved in the project. The first set of acquisition, originally planned for the first half of

  12. K-feldspar-quartz and K-feldspar-plagioclase phase boundary interactions in garnet-orthopyroxene gneiss's from the Val Strona di Omegna, Ivrea-Verbano Zone, northern Italy

    Harlov, Daniel E.; Wirth, Richard

    A detailed study based on textural observations combined with microanalysis [back scattered electron imaging (BSE) and electron microprobe analysis (EMPA)] and microstructural data transmission electron microscopy (TEM) has been made of K-feldspar micro-veins along quartz-plagioclase phase and plagioclase-plagioclase grain boundaries in granulite facies, orthopyroxene-garnet-bearing gneiss's (700-825°C, 6-8kbar) from the Val Strona di Omegna, Ivrea-Verbano Zone, northern Italy. The K-feldspar micro-veins are commonly associated with quartz and plagioclase and are not found in quartz absent regions of the thin section. This association appears to represent a localised reaction texture resulting from a common high grade dehydration reaction, namely: amphibole+quartz = orthopyroxene+clinopyroxene+plagioclase+K-feldspar+H2O, which occurred during the granulite facies metamorphism of these rocks. There are a number of lines of evidence for this. These include abundant Ti-rich biotite, which was apparently stable during granulite facies metamorphism, and total lack of amphibole, which apparently was not. Disorder between Al and Si in the K-feldspar indicates crystallisation at temperatures >500°C. Myrmekite and albitic rim intergrowths in the K-feldspar along the K-feldspar-plagioclase interface could only have formed at temperatures >500-600°C. Symplectic intergrowths of albite and Ca-rich plagioclase between these albitic rim intergrowths and plagioclase suggest a high temperature grain boundary reaction, which most likely occurred at the start of decompression in conjunction with a fluid phase. Relatively high dislocation densities (>2×109 to 3×109/cm2) in the K-feldspar suggest plastic deformation at temperatures >500°C. We propose that this plastic deformation is linked with the extensional tectonic environment present during the mafic underplating event responsible for the granulite facies metamorphism in these rocks. Lastly, apparently active garnet grain

  13. Malaria in illegal Chinese immigrants, Italy.

    Matteelli, A; Volonterio, A; Gulletta, M; Galimberti, L; Maroccolo, S; Gaiera, G; Giani, G; Rossi, M; Dorigoni, N; Bellina, L; Orlando, G; Bisoffi, Z; Castelli, F


    A cluster of 22 imported malaria cases, 21 caused by Plasmodium falciparum, was observed among illegal Chinese immigrants in northern Italy in the summer of 2000. The rate of severe disease was high because the patients were not immune and they sought health-care services late in their illness because of their clandestine status. Recognition of the outbreak was delayed because no regional alert system among infectious diseases hospitals was in place.

  14. [Complexity of care and organizational effectiveness: a survey among medical care units in nine Lombardy region hospitals].

    Pasquali, Sara; Capitoni, Enrica; Tiraboschi, Giuseppina; Alborghetti, Adriana; De Luca, Giuseppe; Di Mauro, Stefania


    Eleven medical care units of nine Lombardy Region hospitals organized by levels of care model or by the traditional departmental model have been analyzed, in order to evaluate if methods for complexity of patient-care evaluation represent an index factor of nursing organizational effectiveness. Survey with nine Nurses in managerial position was conducted between Nov. 2013-Jan. 2014. The following factors have been described: context and nursing care model, staffing, complexity evaluation, patient satisfaction, staff well-being. Data were processed through Microsoft Excel. Among Units analysed ,all Units in levels of care and one organized by the departmental model systematically evaluate nursing complexity. Registered Nurses (RN) and Health Care Assistants (HCA) are on average numerically higher in Units that measure complexity (0.55/ 0.49 RN, 0.38/0.23 HCA - ratio per bed). Adopted measures in relation to changes in complexity are:rewarding systems, supporting interventions, such as moving personnel within different Units or additional required working hours; reduction in number of beds is adopted when no other solution is available. Patient satisfaction is evaluated through Customer Satisfaction questionnaires. Turnover, stress and rate of absenteeism data are not available in all Units. Complexity evaluation through appropriate methods is carried out in all hospitals organized in levels of care with personalized nursing care models, though complexity is detected with different methods. No significant differences in applied managerial strategies are present. Patient's satisfaction is evaluated everywhere. Data on staffing wellbeing is scarcely available. Coordinated regional actions are recommended in order to gather comparable data for research, improve decision making and effectiveness of Nursing care.

  15. Foreign children with cancer in Italy

    Zecca Marco


    Full Text Available Abstract Background There has been a noticeable annual increase in the number of children coming to Italy for medical treatment, just like it has happened in the rest of the European Union. In Italy, the assistance to children suffering from cancer is assured by the current network of 54 centres members of the Italian Association of Paediatric Haematology and Oncology (AIEOP, which has kept records of all demographic and clinical data in the database of Mod.1.01 Registry since 1989. Methods We used the information stored in the already mentioned database to assess the impact of immigration of foreign children with cancer on centres' activity, with the scope of drawing a map of the assistance to these cases. Results Out of 14,738 cases recorded by all centres in the period from 1999 to 2008, 92.2% were born and resident in Italy, 4.1% (608 were born abroad and living abroad and 3.7% (538 were born abroad and living in Italy. Foreign children cases have increased over the years from 2.5% in 1999 to. 8.1% in 2008. Most immigrant children came from Europe (65.7%, whereas patients who came from America, Asia and Oceania amounted to 13.2%, 10.1%, 0.2%, respectively. The immigrant survival rate was lower compared to that of children who were born in Italy. This is especially true for acute lymphoblastic leukaemia patients entered an AIEOP protocol, who showed a 10-years survival rate of 71.0% vs. 80.7% (p Conclusions Children and adolescents are an increasingly important part of the immigration phenomenon, which occurs in many parts of the world. In Italy the vast majority of children affected by malignancies are treated in AIEOP centres. Since immigrant children are predominantly treated in northern Italy, these centres have developed a special expertise in treating immigrant patients, which is certainly very useful for the entire AIEOP network.

  16. Outcome of Short Period and Intermittent ImatinibPhased Chemotherapy (Northern Italy Leukemia Group Protocol 09/00) as Therapy for Ph+ ALL%短程、间歇伊马替尼联合传统化疗(N ILG09/00方案)在Ph+ ALL治疗中的作用

    杜欣; 凌伟


    1 文献来源Renato B,Giuseppe R,Enrico MP,et al.Chemotherapy-phased Imatinib pulses improve longterm outcome of adult patients with Philadelphia chromosome-positive acute lymphoblastic leukemia:Northern Italy leukemia group protocol 09/00[J].J Clin Oncol,2010,28(22):3644-3652.2 证据水平3a.3背景·作为一种ABL1酪氨酸激酶抑制剂,伊马替尼在费城染色体(Philadelphia chromosome,Ph)阳性急性淋巴细胞白血病(acute lymphoblastic leukemia,ALL)患者的治疗中担当重要角色.%Department of Hemalology, Cancer Center, Guangdong General Hospital, Guangdong Academy of Medical Sciences, Guangzhou 510080, China

  17. Republic of Italy (country profile).

    Hakkert, R


    This discussion of Italy focuses on the following: cities and regions; population growth; households and families; housing and construction; ethnicity and religion; education; economy and labor force; consumption; and transport and communications. Italy, with its total area of 116,374 square miles, is about the size of Florida and Georgia combined. Its 56.6 million people form the 2nd largest population in Western Europe, after West Germany, but slightly larger than Great Britain and France. The main administrative divisions are 20 regions, subdivided into 95 provinces. The provinces in turn are divided into 8090 "comuni" or municipalities. The 6 cities with more than 500,000 people are Roma, Milano, Napoli, Torino, Genova, and Palermo. They account for 14% of the population. The 43 cities with between 100,000-500,000 account for another 13%. There are 373 middle-sized communities with between 20,000 and 100,000 people, accounting for 26% of population. Italy has a regional problem. The line separating the regions of Emilia Romagna, Toscana, Umbria, and Lazio from the regions to the south and east is important. The regions north of it hold 62% of the population but are responsible for 73% of the gross national product (GNP) and 78% of the industrial product. The regions to the south are economically much weaker. At the time of the last Italian census on October 25, 1981, the country counted 56.6 million inhabitants. Compared to 33.5 million at the turn of the century, this implies an average annual growth rate of .61%. Between 1900-70, nearly 20 million Italians left their country. Most settled in the US, Argentina, and Brazil. Beginning in the 1960s, a new sort of migration was added as young Italians temporarily left to work in the more prosperous countries of northern Europe. The birthrate, which had declined slowly to 18/1000 during the 1960s, fell more rapidly during the 1970s, to 10.9/1000 in 1981 and 10.3 in 1984. The death rate in Italy has changed little

  18. Cost-effectiveness evaluation of escitalopram in major depressive disorder in Italy

    Mencacci C


    Full Text Available Claudio Mencacci,1 Guido Di Sciascio,2 Pablo Katz,3 Claudio Ripellino31Ospedale Fatebenefratelli, Milan, Italy; 2Azienda Ospedaliera Universitaria Consorziale Policlinico di Bari, Bari, Italy; 3CSD Medical Research Srl, Milan, ItalyBackground: Depression has a lifetime prevalence of 10%–25% among women and 5%–12% among men. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs are the most used and the most cost-effective treatment for long-term major depressive disorder. Since the introduction of generic SSRIs, the costs of branded drugs have been questioned. The objective of this study was to assess the cost-effectiveness (€ per quality-adjusted life year [QALY] of escitalopram (which is still covered by a patent compared with paroxetine, sertraline, and citalopram, the patents for which have expired.Methods: A decision analytic model was adapted from the Swedish Dental and Pharmaceutical Benefits agency model to reflect current clinical practice in the treatment of depression in Italy in collaboration with an expert panel of Italian psychiatrists and health economists. The population comprised patients with a first diagnosis of major depressive disorder and receiving for the first time one of the following SSRIs: escitalopram, sertraline, paroxetine, and citalopram. The time frame used was 12 months. Efficacy and utility data for the original model were validated by our expert panel. Local data were considered for resource utilization and for treatment costs based on the Lombardy region health service perspective. Several scenario simulations, one-way sensitivity analyses, and Monte Carlo simulations were performed to test the robustness of the model.Results: The base case scenario showed that escitalopram had an incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER of €4395 and €1080 per QALY compared with sertraline and paroxetine, respectively. Escitalopram was dominant over citalopram, which was confirmed by most one-way sensitivity analyses. The

  19. DEWI partnership in Italy

    Durante, F.; Dutilleux, P.; Klug, H.; Winkler, W. [DEWI, Wilhelmshaven (Germany)


    DEWI already has offices in Germany, France, Spain and Brazil. In order to cooperate with a local partner on the fast growing market of Italy, DEWI has signed a partnership contract with Fichtner Italia. In DEWI's main office in Wilhelmshaven the Italian micro siting specialist Francesco Durante is the contact person for Italy. (orig.)

  20. Counseling in Italy

    Remley, Theodore P.; Bacchini, Eugenio; Krieg, Paul


    The counseling profession in Italy is in an early stage of development. No university preparation programs exist, and counselors are not employed in schools. Counselors maintain private practices, work in agencies, and are employed by the government. Counselors receive their preparation in Italy from professional associations in programs that…

  1. Crustal stress regime in Italy

    M. Cesaro


    Full Text Available In order to obtain a reliable map of the present-day stress field in Italy, needed to better understand the active tectonic processes and to contribute to the assessment of seismic hazard, in 1992 we started to collect and analyze new data from borehole breakouts in deep oil and geothermal wells and focal mechanisms of earthquakes (2.5 < M <5 occurred in Italy between 1988 and 1995. From about 200 deep wells and 300 focal mechanisms analyzed to date, we infer that: the internal (SW sector of the Northern Apenninic arc is extending with minimum compressional stress (Shmin oriented ? ENE, while the external front is thrusting over the Adriatic foreland (Shmin ? NW-SE. The entire Southern Apennine is extending in NE direction (from the Tyrrhenian margin to the Apulian foreland and compression (in the foredeep is no longer active at the outer (NE thrust front. Between these two arcs, an abrupt change in the tectonic regime is detected with directions of horizontal stress changing by as much as 90º in the external front, around latitude 430N. Along the Ionian side of the Calabrian arc the stress directions inferred from breakouts and focal mechanisms are scattered with a hint of rotation from N-S Shmin close to the Southern Apennines, to ~ E-W directions in the Messina Strait. In Sicily, a NW-SE direction of SHmax is evident in the Hyblean foreland, parallel to the direction of plate motion between Africa and Europe. A more complex pattern of stress directions is observed in the thrust belt zone, with rotations from the regional trend (NW í directed SHmax to NE oriented SHmax. A predominant NW direction of SHmax is also detected in mainland Sicily from earthquake focal mechanisms, but no well data are available in this region. In the northern part of Sicily (Aeolian Islands a ~N-S direction of SHmax is observed.

  2. LCA Comparison of waste incineration in Denmark and Italy

    Turconi, Roberto; Butera, Stefania; Boldrin, Alessio


    of two incinerator systems that are representative of conditions in Northern and Southern Europe. The two case studies are Aarhus (Denmark) and Milan (Italy). The results show that waste incineration appears more environmentally friendly in the Danish case than in the Italian one, due to the higher...

  3. Headcount 2010: the multiplication of the grey squirrel populations introduced to Italy

    Adriano Martinoli


    Full Text Available The introduction of non-native animal species is an important cause of loss of biodiversity, for this reason their population control has received a lot of attention in the scientific literature. While the number of introduced species of many taxa is constantly growing, the eradication of new populations (“a posteriori” action and the regulation of the trade of live animals and plants (“a priori” strategies is proceeding slowly. Tree squirrels as a taxon and grey squirrels (Sciurus carolinensis in particular are among the most successful invasive alien species. Here we present the current situation (October 2010 of the grey squirrel in Italy. The grey squirrel was first reported in Piedmont in an area around the Stupinigi forests in 1948. Subsequent major introductions were reported in Genova-Nervi (1966 and the Ticino Valley Regional Park in Lombardy (1999. In 2010, there were 24 areas with a (meta population or nucleus of grey squirrels: 23 of these were in the three regions most affected by the invasive species Piedmont, Lombardy and Liguria. The number of known areas with grey squirrel presence has strongly increased in the last years. With the exception of the Genova-Nervi population, there is a lack of detailed knowledge on grey squirrel distribution and population size in areas where animals are now known or believed to be present. We underline the necessity to introduce immediately a ban on grey squirrel trade and, preferably, to all invasive species of the Sciuridae family, and to start immediate control or eradication actions.

  4. Attendance in cancer screening programmes in Italy

    Grazia Grazzini


    Full Text Available

    Background: The European Community recommends mammography, cervical and colorectal cancer screening programmes. In Italy, cancer screening programmes have been included in the Basic Healthcare Parameters (Livelli Essenziali di Assistenza since 2001. Full national coverage of a population-based organized screening programme has been planned for in Italy and is being implemented. Since 2005, the Ministry of Health - Department of Prevention has formally charged The National Centre for Screening Monitoring (Osservatorio Nazionale Screening –ONS- with monitoring and promoting screening programmes nationwide. Participation of target populations is a key indicator of the impact and efficacy of a screening programme in reducing cancer mortality.

    Methods: Attendance of invitees is one of the indicators calculated every year in the quality control of Italian screening programmes. Data collection is organized by means of a structured questionnaire, sent by ONS to the referent for data collection in each Region, who then returns the completed questionnaires to the Regional Centre. Questionnaires are then sent to the National Centre. Logical and epidemiologic checks are performed at both levels. Every year ONS publishes reports on the results of the surveys. A feasibility study for a National data warehouse based on individual records is in progress. The national survey “Multiscopo sulle famiglie” and the Passi Study (Progetti delle Aziende Sanitarie per la Salute in Italia provided additional information regarding spontaneous preventive health care activities in the Italian population.

    Results: Mammography screening: In 2006, 78.2% of Italian women aged 50-69 lived in areas where organised screening was in place (theoretical extension, however, the distribution of the screening activity is not uniform (higher in Northern/Central Italy compared with Southern

  5. Detection of Leishmania infantum, Babesia canis, and rickettsiae in ticks removed from dogs living in Italy.

    Trotta, Michele; Nicetto, Martina; Fogliazza, Alessandro; Montarsi, Fabrizio; Caldin, Marco; Furlanello, Tommaso; Solano-Gallego, Laia


    The aims of this study were to determine natural infections by Anaplasma phagocytophilum/Anaplasma platys, Bartonella henselae, Ehrlichia canis, Leishmania infantum, Rickettsia spp., Babesia spp., and Hepatozoon spp. by molecular methods in ticks (n=91) removed from dogs with clinical signs and laboratory abnormalities compatible with tick-borne diseases (n=22) living in Italy and to assess the distribution and species of ticks encountered. Ticks from dogs living in southern Italy were all identified as Rhipicephalus sanguineus (n=25), ticks from central Italy included Rh. sanguineus (n=8) and Ixodes ricinus (n=9), ticks from northern Italy included Rh. sanguineus (n=45), Dermacentor marginatus (n=3), and one I. ricinus. Leishmania infantum, Rickettsia spp., and Babesia canis were the only pathogens detected in 7 (8%), 4 (4%), and 2 (2%) out of 91 ticks, respectively. L. infantum was detected in I. ricinus from central Italy and in Rh. sanguineus from northern and central Italy. Rickettsia conorii and Ri. massiliae were detected in Rh. sanguineus ticks from central and southern Italy (Sicily), respectively. Bab. canis was detected in D. marginatus ticks from northern Italy.

  6. The CRACK programme: a scientific alliance for bridging healthcare research and public health policies in Italy

    Giovanni Corrao


    Full Text Available Healthcare utilisation databases, and other secondary data sources, have been used with growing frequency to assess health outcomes and healthcare interventions worldwide. Their increased popularity as a research tool is due to their timely availability, the large patient populations covered, low cost, and applicability for studying real-world clinical practice. Despite the need to measure Italian National Health Service performance both at regional and national levels, the wealth of good quality electronic data and the high standards of scientific research in this field, healthcare research and public health policies seem to progress along orthogonal dimensions in Italy. The main barriers to the development of evidence-based public health include the lack of understanding of evidence-based methodologies by policy makers, and of involvement of researchers in the policy process. The CRACK programme was launched by some academics from the Lombardy Region. By extensively using electronically stored data, epidemiologists, biostatisticians, pharmacologists and clinicians applied methods and evidence to several issues of healthcare research. The CRACK programme was based on their intention to remove barriers that thwart the process of bridging methods and findings from scientific journals to public health practice. This paper briefly describes aim, articulation and management of the CRACK programme, and discusses why it might find articulated application in Italy.

  7. Rupestrian culture in Italy

    Crescenzi, C


    Rupestrian culture in Italy. L'articolo descrive sinteticamente le aree di studio, di alcune regioni italiane interessate dal fenomeno dell’architettura rupestre, che sono state oggetto dei workshop realizzati nell'ambito del progetto di ricerca internazionale Cultural Rupestrian Heritage in the Circum-Mediterraneam Area-cinp. Programme Culture 2007-2013, Budget 2010, Strand 1.1 Multi-annual cooperation project, Strand 1.2.1- Cooperation measures. estrian culture in Italy

  8. Management of immigration and pregnancy screening in northeastern Italy

    Giorgio Tamaro


    Full Text Available Giorgio Tamaro, Sergio ParcoDepartment of Laboratory Medicine, Children's Hospital, Burlo Garofolo, Trieste, ItalyAbstract: This study assesses the impact of immigration in Friuli Venezia Giulia, a region of northeastern Italy, on the epidemiological features of hemoglobin patterns and on prothrombotic and trisomy risk in pregnancy for patients of non-Italian origin. This study follows a series of studies on the incidence of thalassemia and other hemoglobinopathies with reduced globin chain synthesis, that were performed during the postwar (1939–45 period in Friuli Venezia Giulia following immigration into the region from Istria and Sardinia (regions of northern and central Italy. Current data show that today’s constantly growing immigration into the region differs from previous decades, in terms of origin and quantity of migrants, who mainly come from third world countries. This has a significant impact on health care issues, and more specifically on prospective health screening for foreigners. The authors conclude that scholastic education and hospital services, either public or private, and voluntary associations, may contribute to solving the problem, but only in terms of training and organization, for non-European Union citizens arriving in northern Italy and neighboring areas, especially those from Africa, Asia, Latin America, and eastern Europe.Keywords: immigration, hemoglobinopathy, pregnancy, trisomy, thalassemia trait, Italy

  9. A review of the competitive effects of alien grey squirrels on behaviour, activity and habitat use of red squirrels in mixed, deciduous woodland in Italy

    Luc Wauters


    Full Text Available Abstract The introduction of alien species can cause competitive exclusion of ecologically similar native species when there is no niche differentiation between them. Such invasive species can constitute a serious threat to biodiversity in the region where they have been introduced, causing extinction or decline of native species through competition. A well-documented case is widescale replacement of native Eurasian red squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris by introduced eastern grey squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis on the British Isles and parts of northern Italy. Rapid increase of grey squirrel's distribution range, coincided with a dramatic decline of the native red squirrel's range, and grey squirrels have now replaced red squirrels over much of Britain and in fragmented landscapes in Piedmont, northern Italy. In this review, we consider the evidence that has been obtained from studies on competitive effects of grey squirrels on activity, habitat use, foraging behaviour and food choice of individual red squirrels in broadleaf woodlands in North-west Italy. In these habitats, there is no evidence for niche partitioning between red and grey squirrels in any of the niche parameters examined, suggesting that red squirrels are unable to adapt to avoid competition with the congener when resources become limiting. Interspecific competition seems to occur mainly for food resources that affect fitness of squirrels at crucial periods of the year, such as cached tree seeds in winter and spring. Also, the greater use of acorns by grey squirrels gives the invasive species an advantage over red squirrels in mixed deciduous woods, especially with a preponderance of oaks. This is supported by studies in Britain and Italy that show that co-existence of the two species in mixed deciduous woodlands is of short duration (e.g. less than 3-5 years with grey squirrels advantaged in resource exploitation competition, resulting in the local

  10. The role of national regulations in RPAS-based mapping projects in the monitoring of natural hazards that could involve infrastructures: the example of the Val Venosta Railway (Northern Italy - Bolzano).

    Gandolfo, Luca; Busnardo, Enrico; Castellarin, Nicola; Canella, Claudio; Canella, Federico; Stabile, Marco; Curci, Francesco; Petrillo, Giovanni


    Italy has adopted National Regulations for the use of RPAS in its country's airspace in December 2013, issued by the Italian Civil Aviation Authority (ENAC). Despite the issued regulations, over the past months an increasing number of unauthorized and unsafe operations have been performed and the attention to safety is growing quickly in the public opinion. For this reason "Critical Operations" is permitted only to those RPAS Operators which have received special authorization by ENAC after a very demanding Aeronautical procedure. According to the Regulations, the flight close to-over urban areas, industrial plants, highways and railways, implies that only authorized RPAS Operators may perform such activities. An example of a "Critical" operation were the RPAS flights performed along the Venosta railway line to evaluate the current situation of two areas affected by geological instability and laid the basis for a future high accurate monitoring. The Venosta Valley is located in the western part of South Tyrol (Norhtern Italy). The valley possesses some unique features compared to the entire Alps, the particularly dry climate and the presence of huge alluvional fans, which give rise to different levels of altitude in the valley. From geological point of view, the Venosta Valley is characterized by the presence of the Austroalpine domain. In particular, there are two different geological units in this area: (i) the crystalline schists of the basement, which includes paragneiss, gneiss, granitoid pegmatites, garnet micaschists, quartzites and phyllites. (ii) The Mesozoic coverage divided into various complexes with successions of phyllites, volcanics and magmatiti. The railway line that runs through the Venosta Valley (Merano - Malles) unfolds along a path of 59,8 kilometers and covers an altitude difference of about 700 meters. In particular, three tunnels characterized the first section, including the M. Giuseppe tunnel, which required extensive consolidations both

  11. Biogerontology in Italy.

    Odetti, Patrizio; Bergamini, Ettore


    In this paper experimental gerontology in Italy is reviewed on the basis of research developed in Academic and non Academic Centres. There are several groups across Italy working actively on basic science of aging producing high impact papers with a significant contribution to biogerontology. Some distinguished Italian scientist working abroad is also mentioned. Interesting issues on longevity and interventions on aging (including caloric restriction) and on aging brain are quoted. Relevant studies encompass the (glyco-)oxidative stress as direct damage mechanism and main process of theory of aging, other research lines include IGF-1, mitochondria DNA, obesity/sarcopenia and exercise and also an animal model for aging studies is reported. Notwithstanding financial restrictions and structure deficit the biogerontology research in Italy could be judged as good, but additional resources are necessary to keep this good rank.

  12. [A note on induced abortion in Italy].

    Cagiano De Azevedo, R


    The adoption of a recent law on abortion (1978) makes available in Italy new statistics at both the national and regional levels. Following the official source of ISTAT, the abortion rate/100 livebirths in 1979 was about 28%, about 40% in the northern part of Italy, and only 16% in Mezzogiorno. This abortion rate, as an average data at the national level, corresponds to a normal position among similar rates in western countries; closer to EEC member states. But the regional variability seems a very interesting new aspect of the Italian tryptic (north, center, south) largely presented in many demographic indicators. 3 factors are presented as a possible explication of this variability: a real different attitude of women and couples towards abortion from cultural, religious, and political points of view; the coexistence of legal and illegal abortion despite the adoption of a new liberal law; and the very important disequilibrium in the distribution of structures and medical services available to assure abortions in different parts of the country. Some other demographic points related to abortion are also presented here, particularly in connection with age structure of women and their marital status. Future trends in abortion with subsequent effects on fertility are also discussed at the end of this article. The arguments follow 2 alternatives presented in Italy by the National Committee on Population and the Committee of Demographic Studies. (author's modified)

  13. Wine tourism in Italy

    Cinelli Colombini D


    Donatella Cinelli Colombini Orcia Doc Wine Consortium, Rocca d’Orcia , Italy Abstract: This text includes the history of wine tourism in Italy since 1993, when the first edition of the event “Cantine Aperte” (Open Cellars), Wine Day, took place. The movement grew from the initial 25 wineries to the 21,000 that participate today in opening their doors to the public, while visitors grew in numbers from a couple of hundred, 20 years ago, to the current 4 to 6 milli...

  14. Gypsum karst in Italy: a review

    De Waele, Jo; Chiarini, Veronica; Columbu, Andrea; D'Angeli, Ilenia M.; Madonia, Giuliana; Parise, Mario; Piccini, Leonardo; Vattano, Marco; Vigna, Bartolomeo; Zini, Luca; Forti, Paolo


    Although outcropping only rarely in Italy, gypsum karst has been described in detail since the early XXth century (Marinelli, 1917). Gypsum caves are now known from almost all Italian regions (Madonia & Forti, 2003), but are mainly localised along the northern border of the Apennine chain (Emilia Romagna and Marche regions), Calabria, and Sicily, where the major outcrops occur. Recently, important caves have also been discovered in the underground gypsum quarries in Piedmont (Vigna et al., 2010). During the late 80s and 90s several multidisciplinary studies have been carried out in many gypsum areas. All this work converged into a comprehensive overview in 2003 (Madonia & Forti, 2003). Further detailed studies focused on the gypsum areas of Emilia Romagna (Chiesi et al., 2010; Forti & Lucci, 2010; Demaria et al., 2012; De Waele & Pasini, 2013; Ercolani et al., 2013; Columbu et al., 2015; Lucci & Piastra, 2015; Tedeschi et al., 2015) and of Sicily (Madonia & Vattano, 2011). Sinkholes related to Permo-Triassic gypsum have been studied in Friuli Venezia Giulia (Zini et al., 2015). This presentation will review the state of the art regarding different aspects of evaporite karst in Italy focusing on the main new results. References Chiesi M., et al. (2010) - Origin and evolution of a salty gypsum/anhydrite karst spring: the case of Poiano (Northern Apennines, Italy). Hydrogeology Journal, 18, pp. 1111-1124. Columbu A. et al. (2015) - Gypsum caves as indicators of climate-driven river incision and aggradation in a rapidly uplifting region. Geology, 43(6), 539-542. Demaria D. et al. (Eds.) (2012), Le Grotte Bolognesi, GSB-USB, 431 p. De Waele J., Pasini G. (2013) - Intra-messinian gypsum palaeokarst in the northern Apennines and its palaeogeographic implications. Terra Nova 25, pp. 199-205. Ercolani M., et al. (Eds.) (2013), I Gessi e la Cave i Monte Tondo. Studio multidisciplinare di un'area carsica nella Vena del Gesso Romagnola. Memorie Ist. It. Spel. II(26), 559 p

  15. War and Comics (Italy)

    Bianchi, Roberto


    Comics played a very important role in the total mobilization in Italy. Firstly in the cities and then in the trenches, they were a new propaganda tool and explanation of the war for children and soldiers with low literacy. At the same time, the war changed the history of comics and the magazine market for children and youth

  16. Italy. [CME Country Reports].

    Council of Europe, Strasbourg (France). Documentation Center for Education in Europe.

    Ever since 1946, increased emigration in Italy has been paralleled by a slow but steady increase in educational activity. In 1971, Law No. 153 was adopted which provides for special educational arrangements to be made for migrant workers and their spouses adopted by the Italian Government are based on the need for Italian children to: (1) be…

  17. Personal Identity in Italy

    Crocetti, Elisabetta; Rabaglietti, Emanuela; Sica, Luigia Simona


    This chapter discusses specifics of identity formation in Italian adolescents and emerging adults. We review consistent evidence illustrating that, in Italy, a progressive deferral of transition to adulthood strongly impacts youth identity development by stimulating identity exploration and postponement of identity commitments. We also consider…

  18. Italy 2000 - 2011

    Stefania Onesti


    Full Text Available This section of the review includes Italian dance books from 2000 till now. Texts has been selected following the scientific approach of the review, in order to outline the contemporary panorama of dance studies in Italy. Titles has been organized in two ways by subject, as an indication, and year of publication.

  19. Collection for Italy

    Fabiola Gianotti, Director-General, and Ghislain Roy, President of the Staff Association


    Following the earthquake of 24 August in central Italy, many of you have expressed your solidarity. The collection to support the victims raised a total of 10 000 CHF, which was transferred in its entirety to Italy’s civil protection through the Italian delegation to the CERN Council. The CERN Directorate and the CERN Staff Association sincerely thank you for your generosity.

  20. Personal Identity in Italy

    Crocetti, Elisabetta; Rabaglietti, Emanuela; Sica, Luigia Simona


    This chapter discusses specifics of identity formation in Italian adolescents and emerging adults. We review consistent evidence illustrating that, in Italy, a progressive deferral of transition to adulthood strongly impacts youth identity development by stimulating identity exploration and postponement of identity commitments. We also consider…

  1. Seasonal changes of trophic niche overlap in the stone marten (Martes foina and the red fox (Vulpes vulpes in a mountainous area of the Northern Apennines (N-Italy

    Anna Brangi


    Full Text Available Abstract Between 1989 and 1991, 284 scats of stone marten (Martes foina and 642 scats of red fox (Vulpes vulpes were collected in a 280 km² mountainous area in the northern Apennines. The scats were analyzed to identify differences between the two species' diets. The prey were grouped in 6 food categories: Fruits, Other Vegetables, Small Mammals, Other Vertebrates, Invertebrates and Garbage. Annual trophic niche was wider in the Red fox (0.62 than in the stone marten (0.53. We also found a large overlap between the two species with some small differences: Other Vertebrates, Small Mammals and Other Vegetables were more used by the Red fox, while Fruits were more used by the stone marten. Riassunto Variazioni stagionali della sovrapposizione di nicchia trofica della faina (Martes foina e della volpe (Vulpes vulpes in un'area montana degli Appennini settentrionali - Tra il 1989 e il 1991 sono state raccolte 284 feci di faina (Martes foina e 642 feci di volpe (Vulpes vulpes in un'area montuosa di 280 km² situata nell'Appennino settentrionale. Le feci sono state analizzate per evidenziare le eventuali differenze nella dieta delle due specie. Le singole prede sono state raggruppate in 6 categorie alimentari: Frutta, Altri Vegetali, Micromammiferi, Altri Vertebrati, Invertebrati, Rifiuti. L'ampiezza annuale della dieta è risultata maggiore nella Volpe (0,62 che non nella Faina (0,53. È stata trovata inoltre una larga sovrapposizione tra le due specie con alcune differenze nell'uso degli Altri Vertebrati, dei Micromammiferi e degli Altri Vegetali che è maggiore nella Volpe e della Frutta, maggiore nella Faina.

  2. Dietary glycemic load and gastric cancer risk in Italy

    Bertuccio, P.; Praud, D; Chatenoud, L.; Lucenteforte, E.; Bosetti, C.; Pelucchi, C; Rossi, M.; Negri, E; La Vecchia, C


    We investigated gastric cancer risk in relation to dietary glycemic index (GI) and glycemic load (GL), which represent indirect measures of carbohydrate absorption and consequently of dietary insulin demand, in a case-control study conducted in northern Italy between 1997 and 2007, including 230 patients with the incident, histologically confirmed gastric cancer and 547 frequency matched controls, admitted to the same hospitals as cases with acute non-neoplastic conditions. We used conditiona...

  3. Conscientious objection in Italy.

    Minerva, Francesca


    The law regulating abortion in Italy gives healthcare practitioners the option to make a conscientious objection to activities that are specific and necessary to an abortive intervention. Conscientious objectors among Italian gynaecologists amount to about 70%. This means that only a few doctors are available to perform abortions, and therefore access to abortion is subject to constraints. In 2012 the International Planned Parenthood Federation European Network (IPPF EN) lodged a complaint against Italy to the European Committee of Social Rights, claiming that the inadequate protection of the right to access abortion implies a violation of the right to health. In this paper I will discuss the Italian situation with respect to conscientious objection to abortion and I will suggest possible solutions to the problem.

  4. Mt. Vesuvius, Italy


    This ASTER image of Mt. Vesuvius Italy was acquired September 26, 2000, and covers an area of 36 by 45 km. Vesuvius overlooks the city of Naples and the Bay of Naples in central Italy. In 79 AD, Vesuvius erupted cataclysmically, burying all of the surrounding cites with up to 30 m of ash. The towns of Pompeii and Herculanaeum were rediscovered in the 18th century, and excavated in the 20th century. They provide a snapshot of Roman life from 2000 years ago: perfectly preserved are wooden objects, food items, and the casts of hundreds of victims. Vesuvius is intensively monitored for potential signs of unrest that could signal the beginning of another eruption. The image is centered at 40.8 degrees north latitude, 14.4 degrees east longitude. The U.S. science team is located at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. The Terra mission is part of NASA's Science Mission Directorate.

  5. Mount Vesuvius, Italy


    This Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) image of Mt. Vesuvius, Italy was acquired September 26, 2000. The full-size false-color image covers an area of 36 by 45 km. Vesuvius overlooks the city of Naples and the Bay of Naples in central Italy. (Popocatepetl and Mount Fuji are other volcanos surrounded by dense urban areas.) In 79 AD, Vesuvius erupted cataclysmically, burying all of the surrounding cites with up to 30 m of ash. The towns of Pompeii and Herculanaeum were rediscovered in the 18th century, and excavated in the 20th century. They provide a snapshot of Roman life from 2000 years ago: perfectly preserved are wooden objects, food items, and the casts of hundreds of victims. Vesuvius is intensively monitored for potential signs of unrest that could signal the beginning of another eruption. Image courtesy NASA/GSFC/MITI/ERSDAC/JAROS, and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team

  6. Mount Vesuvius, Italy


    This Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) image of Mt. Vesuvius, Italy was acquired September 26, 2000. The full-size false-color image covers an area of 36 by 45 km. Vesuvius overlooks the city of Naples and the Bay of Naples in central Italy. (Popocatepetl and Mount Fuji are other volcanos surrounded by dense urban areas.) In 79 AD, Vesuvius erupted cataclysmically, burying all of the surrounding cites with up to 30 m of ash. The towns of Pompeii and Herculanaeum were rediscovered in the 18th century, and excavated in the 20th century. They provide a snapshot of Roman life from 2000 years ago: perfectly preserved are wooden objects, food items, and the casts of hundreds of victims. Vesuvius is intensively monitored for potential signs of unrest that could signal the beginning of another eruption. Image courtesy NASA/GSFC/MITI/ERSDAC/JAROS, and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team

  7. Migration discourses in Italy

    Benelli, Elena


    In the last thirty years, Italy has undergone an anthropological revolution: from a country of emigration that exported millions of emigrants around the world, it has reversed its vocation and has become a country of immigration. The presence of the newcomers on the Italian territory has not always been welcomed and integration has been problematical on diverse levels. In this article I explore how the rhetoric of the State, its laws and the media have portrayed the newcomers under the negati...

  8. Group Psychotherapy in Italy.

    Giannone, Francesca; Giordano, Cecilia; Di Blasi, Maria


    This article describes the history and the prevailing orientations of group psychotherapy in Italy (psychoanalytically oriented, psychodrama, CBT groups) and particularly group analysis. Provided free of charge by the Italian health system, group psychotherapy is growing, but its expansion is patchy. The main pathways of Italian training in the different group psychotherapy orientations are also presented. Clinical-theoretical elaboration on self development, psychopathology related to group experiences, and the methodological attention paid to objectives and methods in different clinical groups are issues related to group therapy in Italy. Difficulties in the relationship between research and clinical practice are discussed, as well as the empirical research network that tries to bridge the gap between research and clinical work in group psychotherapy. The economic crisis in Italy has led to massive cuts in health care and to an increasing demand for some forms of psychological treatment. For these reasons, and because of its positive cost-benefit ratio, group psychotherapy is now considered an important tool in the national health care system to expand the clinical response to different forms of psychological distress.

  9. Geological evidence of pre-2012 seismic events, Emilia-Romagna, Italy

    Riccardo Caputo


    Full Text Available In May 2012, two moderate (-to-strong earthquakes that were associated with a noticeable aftershock sequence affected the eastern sector of the Po Plain, Italy, in correspondence with a buried portion of the Apennines thrust belt. The Provinces of Ferrara, Modena and Bologna (Emilia Romagna Region, Mantua (Lombardy Region, and Rovigo (Veneto Region were affected to different extents. The first shock (Ml 5.9 according to the Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia (INGV; National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology, and Mw 6.1 according to the US Geological Service occurred on May 20, 2012, at 2:03 a.m. (GMT; this was the strongest of the sequence, and it was followed by several aftershocks (up to Ml 5.1. This first event produced secondary ground deformation effects, which were mainly associated with liquefaction phenomena that were spread across the broader epicentral region, and particularly in the western sector of the Ferrara Province [Papathanassiou et al. 2012, this volume]. A few weeks after the earthquake, a paleoseismological trench was excavated south of San Carlo village, where earthquake-induced effects were widely documented. This report presents the preliminary results of the paleoseismological investigation and documents the occurrence in the same area of paleo-events older than the May 2012 earthquakes. […


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  11. [Social cooperatives in Italy].

    Villotti, P; Zaniboni, S; Fraccaroli, F


    This paper describes the role of social cooperatives in Italy as a type of economic, non-profit organization and their role in contributing to the economic and social growth of the country. The purpose of this paper is to learn more about the experience of the Italian social cooperatives in promoting the work integration process of disadvantaged workers, especially those suffering from mental disorders, from a theoretical and an empirical point of view. Social enterprise is the most popular and consolidated legal and organizational model for social enterprises in Italy, introduced by Law 381/91. Developed during the early 1980s, and formally recognized by law in the early 1990s, social cooperatives aim at pursuing the general interest of the community to promote the human needs and social inclusion of citizens. They are orientated towards aims that go beyond the interest of the business owners, the primary beneficiary of their activities is the community, or groups of disadvantaged people. In Italy, Law 381/91 distinguishes between two categories of social cooperatives, those producing goods of social utility, such as culture, welfare and educational services (A-type), and those providing economic activities for the integration of disadvantaged people into employment (B-type). The main purpose of B-type social cooperatives is to integrate disadvantaged people into the open labour market. This goal is reached after a period of training and working experience inside the firm, during which the staff works to improve both the social and professional abilities of disadvantaged people. During the years, B-type social co-ops acquired a particular relevance in the care of people with mental disorders by offering them with job opportunities. Having a job is central in the recovery process of people suffering from mental diseases, meaning that B-type social co-ops in Italy play an important rehabilitative and integrative role for this vulnerable population of workers. The

  12. Italy at CERN


    From 23 to 26 June, Italian industry went on display at CERN for the ninth time. Twenty-four Italian firms working closely with CERN showed off the latest high-energy physics technology developed by them. Guido Possa, Vice-Minister for Education, Universities and Research, inaugurated the exhibition on 24 June. He took the opportunity afforded by his visit to tour Building SM18, where LHC magnets are tested and assembled, before inspecting the assembly hall for ATLAS detector components. Guido Possa, Italian Vice-Minister for Education, Universities and Research, is seen visiting one of the "Italy at CERN" exhibition stands.

  13. The Bologna Process in Italy

    Ballarino, Gabriele; Perotti, Loris


    Italy was among the promoters of the Bologna Process and the early adopters of the reform. If one looks at its impact on the formal structure of curricula and study programmes, the reform undertaken under the Bo