WorldWideScience

Sample records for suboptimal environmental conditions

  1. Suboptimal light conditions influence source-sink metabolism during flowering

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annelies eChristiaens

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Reliance on carbohydrates during flower forcing was investigated in one early and one late flowering cultivar of azalea (Rhododendron simsii hybrids. Carbohydrate accumulation, invertase activity, and expression of a purported sucrose synthase gene (RsSUS was monitored during flower forcing under suboptimal (natural and optimal (supplemental light light conditions, after a cold treatment (7°C + dark to break flower bud dormancy. Post-production sucrose metabolism and flowering quality was also assessed. Glucose and fructose concentrations and invertase activity increased in petals during flowering, while sucrose decreased. In suboptimal light conditions RsSUS expression in leaves increased as compared to optimal light conditions, indicating that plants in suboptimal light conditions have a strong demand for carbohydrates. However, carbohydrates in leaves were markedly lower in suboptimal light conditions compared to optimal light conditions. This resulted in poor flowering of plants in suboptimal light conditions. Post-production flowering relied on the stored leaf carbon, which could be accumulated under optimal light conditions in the greenhouse. These results show that flower opening in azalea relies on carbohydrates imported from leaves and is source-limiting under suboptimal light conditions.

  2. The effect of plant-based diet and suboptimal environmental conditions on digestive function and diet-induced enteropathy in rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mosberian-Tanha, P.; Schrama, J.W.; Landsverk, T.; Mydland, L.T.; Øverland, M.

    2017-01-01

    This experiment investigated intestinal enteropathy and digestive function of rainbow trout challenged with soybean meal-based diet (SBM) at optimal or suboptimal environments created by normal or reduced water flow, respectively. Oxygen level remained above 7 mg L-1 for optimal environment and

  3. Modulation of redox homeostasis under suboptimal conditions by Arabidopsis nudix hydrolase 7

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jambunathan Niranjani

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Nudix hydrolases play a key role in maintaining cellular homeostasis by hydrolyzing various nuceloside diphosphate derivatives and capped mRNAs. Several independent studies have demonstrated that Arabidopsis nudix hydrolase 7 (AtNUDT7 hydrolyzes NADH and ADP-ribose. Loss of function Atnudt7-1 mutant plants (SALK_046441 exhibit stunted growth, higher levels of reactive oxygen species, enhanced resistance to pathogens. However, using the same T-DNA line, two other groups reported that mutant plants do not exhibit any visible phenotypes. In this study we analyze plausible factors that account for differences in the observed phenotypes in Atnudt7. Secondly, we evaluate the biochemical and molecular consequences of increased NADH levels due to loss of function of AtNUDT7 in Arabidopsis. Results We identified a novel conditional phenotype of Atnudt7-1 knockout plants that was contingent upon nutrient composition of potting mix. In nutrient-rich Metro-Mix, there were no phenotypic differences between mutant and wild-type (WT plants. In the nutrient-poor mix (12 parts vermiculite: 3 parts Redi-earth and 1 part sand, mutant plants showed the characteristic stunted phenotype. Compared with WT plants, levels of glutathione, NAD+, NADH, and in turn NADH:NAD+ ratio were higher in Atnudt7-1 plants growing in 12:3:1 potting mix. Infiltrating NADH and ADP-ribose into WT leaves was sufficient to induce AtNUDT7 protein. Constitutive over-expression of AtNudt7 did not alter NADH levels or resistance to pathogens. Transcriptome analysis identified nearly 700 genes differentially expressed in the Atnudt7-1 mutant compared to WT plants grown in 12:3:1 potting mix. In the Atnudt7-1 mutant, genes associated with defense response, proteolytic activities, and systemic acquired resistance were upregulated, while gene ontologies for transcription and phytohormone signaling were downregulated. Conclusions Based on these observations, we conclude that the

  4. Effects of mannan oligosaccharide and virginiamycin on the cecal microbial community and intestinal morphology of chickens raised under suboptimal conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pourabedin, Mohsen; Xu, Zhengxin; Baurhoo, Bushansingh; Chevaux, Eric; Zhao, Xin

    2014-05-01

    There is an increasing movement against use of antibiotic growth promoters in animal feed. Prebiotic supplementation is a potential alternative to enhance the host's natural defense through modulation of gut microbiota. In the present study, the effect of mannan oligosaccharide (MOS) and virginiamycin (VIRG) on cecal microbial ecology and intestinal morphology of broiler chickens raised under suboptimal conditions was evaluated. MOS and VIRG induced different bacterial community structures, as revealed by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis of 16S rDNA. The antibiotic treatment reduced cecal microbial diversity while the community equitability increased. A higher bacterial diversity was observed in the cecum of MOS-supplemented birds. Quantitative polymerase chain reaction results indicated that MOS changed the cecal microbiota in favor of the Firmicutes population but not the Bacteroidetes population. No difference was observed in total bacterial counts among treatments. MOS promoted the growth of Lactobacillus spp. and Bifidobacterium spp. in the cecum and increased villus height and goblet cell numbers in the ileum and jejunum. These results provide a deeper insight into the microbial ecological changes after supplementation of MOS prebiotic in poultry diets.

  5. Initial Accuracy of HIV Rapid Test Kits Stored in Suboptimal Conditions and Validity of Delayed Reading of Oral Fluid Tests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choko, Augustine T; Taegtmeyer, Miriam; MacPherson, Peter; Cocker, Derek; Khundi, McEwen; Thindwa, Deus; Sambakunsi, Rodrick S; Kumwenda, Moses K; Chiumya, Kondwani; Malema, Owen; Makombe, Simon D; Webb, Emily L; Corbett, Elizabeth L

    2016-01-01

    To evaluate the effect of storing commonly used rapid diagnostic tests above manufacturer-recommended temperature (at 37°C), and the accuracy of delayed reading of oral fluid kits with relevance to HIV self-testing programmes. A quality assurance study of OraQuick (OraSure), Determine HIV 1/2™ (Alere) and Uni-Gold™ (Recombigen®). Consecutive adults (≥18y) attending Ndirande Health Centre in urban Blantyre, Malawi in January to April 2012 underwent HIV testing with two of each of the three rapid diagnostic test kits stored for 28 days at either 18°C (optimally-stored) or at 37°C (pre-incubated). Used OraQuick test kits were stored in a laboratory for delayed day 1 and subsequent monthly re-reading was undertaken for one year. Of 378 individuals who underwent parallel testing, 5 (1.3%) were dropped from the final analysis due to discordant or missing reference standard results (optimally-stored Determine and Uni-Gold). Compared to the diagnostic reference standard, OraQuick had a sensitivity of 97.2% (95% CI: 93.6-99.6). There were 7 false negative results among all test kits stored at 37°C and three false negatives among optimally stored kits. Excellent agreement between pre-incubated tests and optimally-stored tests with Kappa values of 1.00 for Determine and Uni-Gold; and 0.97 (95% CI: 0.95; 1.00) for OraQuick were observed. There was high visual stability on re-reading of OraQuick, with only 1/375 pre-incubated and 1/371 optimally-stored OraQuick kits changing from the initial result over 12 months. Erroneous results observed during HIV testing in low income settings are likely to be due to factors other than suboptimal storage conditions. Re-reading returned OraQuick kits may offer a convenient and accurate quality assurance approach, including in HIV self-testing programmes.

  6. Identification of risk factors for sub-optimal housing conditions in Australian piggeries: Part 1. Study justification and design.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banhazi, T M; Seedorf, J; Rutley, D L; Pitchford, W S

    2008-01-01

    We undertook a literature search related to pig production facilities with two major aims: first, to review all the likely benefits that might be gained from air quality improvements; and second, to review previous research that had identified statistically significant factors affecting airborne pollutants and environmental parameters, so that these factors could be considered in a multifactorial analysis aimed at explaining variations in air pollutant concentrations. Ammonia, carbon dioxide, viable bacteria, endotoxins, and inhalable and respirable particles were identified as major airborne pollutants in the review. We found that high concentrations of airborne pollutants in livestock buildings could increase occupational health and safety risks, compromise the health, welfare, and production efficiency of animals, and affect the environment. Therefore, improving air quality could reduce environmental damage and improve animal and worker health. To achieve a reduction in pollutant concentrations, a better understanding of the factors influencing airborne pollutant concentrations in piggery buildings is required. Most of the work done previously has used simple correlation matrices to identify relationships between key factors and pollutant concentrations, without taking into consideration multifactorial effects simultaneously in a model. However, our review of this prior knowledge was the first important step toward developing a more inclusive statistical model. This review identified a number of candidate risk factors, which we then took into consideration during the development of multifactorial statistical models. We used a general linear model (GLM) to model measured internal concentrations, emissions, and environmental parameters in order to predict and potentially control the building environment.

  7. Negative effects of stress immediately before slaughter on pork quality aggravated by suboptimal transport and lairage conditions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hambrecht, E.; Eissen, J.J.; Newman, D.J.; Smits, C.H.M.; Hartog, den L.A.

    2005-01-01

    The objectives of the present experiment were 1) to study the effects of transport conditions and lairage duration on stress level, muscle glycolytic potential, and pork quality; and 2) to investigate whether the negative effects of high stress immediately preslaughter are affected by preceding

  8. Suboptimal choice in pigeons: Choice is primarily based on the value of the conditioned reinforcer rather than overall reinforcement rate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Aaron P; Zentall, Thomas R

    2016-04-01

    Pigeons have sometimes shown a preference for a signaled 50% reinforcement alternative (leading half of the time to a stimulus that signaled 100% reinforcement and otherwise to a stimulus that signaled 0% reinforcement) over a 100% reinforcement alternative. We hypothesized that pigeons may actually be indifferent between the 2 alternatives with previous inconsistent preferences resulting in part from an artifact of the use of a spatial discrimination. In the present experiments, we tested the hypothesis that pigeons would be indifferent between alternatives that provide conditioned reinforcers of equal value. In Experiment 1, we used the signaled 50% reinforcement versus 100% reinforcement procedure, but cued the alternatives with shapes that varied in their spatial location from trial to trial. Consistent with the stimulus value hypothesis, the pigeons showed indifference between the alternatives. In Experiment 2, to confirm that the pigeons could discriminate between the shapes, we removed the discriminative function from the 50% reinforcement alternative and found a clear preference for the 100% reinforcement alternative. Finally, in Experiment 3, when we returned the discriminative function to the 50% reinforcement alternative and reduced the 100% reinforcement alternative to 50% reinforcement, we found a clear preference for the discriminative stimulus alternative. These results support the hypothesis that pigeons prefer the alternative with the conditioned reinforcer that best predicts reinforcement, whereas its frequency may be relatively unimportant. (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  9. Assessing the Accuracy of High Resolution Digital Surface Models Computed by PhotoScan® and MicMac® in Sub-Optimal Survey Conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marion Jaud

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available For monitoring purposes and in the context of geomorphological research, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV appear to be a promising solution to provide multi-temporal Digital Surface Models (DSMs and orthophotographs. There are a variety of photogrammetric software tools available for UAV-based data. The objective of this study is to investigate the level of accuracy that can be achieved using two of these software tools: Agisoft PhotoScan® Pro and an open-source alternative, IGN© MicMac®, in sub-optimal survey conditions (rugged terrain, with a large variety of morphological features covering a range of roughness sizes, poor GPS reception. A set of UAV images has been taken by a hexacopter drone above the Rivière des Remparts, a river on Reunion Island. This site was chosen for its challenging survey conditions: the topography of the study area (i involved constraints on the flight plan; (ii implied errors on some GPS measurements; (iii prevented an optimal distribution of the Ground Control Points (GCPs and; (iv was very complex to reconstruct. Several image processing tests are performed with different scenarios in order to analyze the sensitivity of each software package to different parameters (image quality, numbers of GCPs, etc.. When computing the horizontal and vertical errors within a control region on a set of ground reference targets, both methods provide rather similar results. A precision up to 3–4 cm is achievable with these software packages. The DSM quality is also assessed over the entire study area comparing PhotoScan DSM and MicMac DSM with a Terrestrial Laser Scanner (TLS point cloud. PhotoScan and MicMac DSM are also compared at the scale of particular features. Both software packages provide satisfying results: PhotoScan is more straightforward to use but its source code is not open; MicMac is recommended for experimented users as it is more flexible.

  10. Dynamic photosynthesis in different environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaiser, Elias; Morales, Alejandro; Harbinson, Jeremy; Kromdijk, Johannes; Heuvelink, Ep; Marcelis, Leo F M

    2015-05-01

    Incident irradiance on plant leaves often fluctuates, causing dynamic photosynthesis. Whereas steady-state photosynthetic responses to environmental factors have been extensively studied, knowledge of dynamic modulation of photosynthesis remains scarce and scattered. This review addresses this discrepancy by summarizing available data and identifying the research questions necessary to advance our understanding of interactions between environmental factors and dynamic behaviour of photosynthesis using a mechanistic framework. Firstly, dynamic photosynthesis is separated into sub-processes related to proton and electron transport, non-photochemical quenching, control of metabolite flux through the Calvin cycle (activation states of Rubisco and RuBP regeneration, and post-illumination metabolite turnover), and control of CO₂ supply to Rubisco (stomatal and mesophyll conductance changes). Secondly, the modulation of dynamic photosynthesis and its sub-processes by environmental factors is described. Increases in ambient CO₂ concentration and temperature (up to ~35°C) enhance rates of photosynthetic induction and decrease its loss, facilitating more efficient dynamic photosynthesis. Depending on the sensitivity of stomatal conductance, dynamic photosynthesis may additionally be modulated by air humidity. Major knowledge gaps exist regarding environmental modulation of loss of photosynthetic induction, dynamic changes in mesophyll conductance, and the extent of limitations imposed by stomatal conductance for different species and environmental conditions. The study of mutants or genetic transformants for specific processes under various environmental conditions could provide significant progress in understanding the control of dynamic photosynthesis. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Experimental Biology. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  11. [Standardised environmental conditions for neurocognitive laboratories].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matamoros-Tuma, M; Alvarez-González, M

    The exploration of neurocognition in neurology departments has gone a long way from the traditional psychometric tests to the present day use of high technology methods in cognitive neurophysiology, as is the case of event related potentials. Given the increased sensitivity of these procedures, it has become absolutely essential to control the influence of environmental variables that may exert non controlled effects on the patient s response. Many neurocognitive laboratories have been set up in premises in which the spatial layout and the environmental characteristics have been determined beforehand and consequently technical staff has had to prepare these rooms in an empirical way. This gives rise to two types of drawbacks: interferences in the patient s concentration and low reproducibility of the results in other laboratories. In this paper we present a proposed set of standardised conditions for a neurocognitive laboratory from an architectural perspective, and more specifically with regard to interior design. We outline the functional design of the premises, the conditions for workplaces where VDU computers (Video Display Units) are used and where psychometric evaluation is carried out. We also discuss the criteria to be followed when placing the laboratory within a hospital, lighting parameters, air conditioning and suggestions about psychological input. Although we do not seek to establish a rigid set of norms, these conditions will raise the quality of evaluations and facilitate the comparison of results because of the reduced variability from the environment.

  12. A hypothesis linking sub-optimal seawater pCO2 conditions for cnidarian-Symbiodinium symbioses with the exceedence of the interglacial threshold (>260 ppmv

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. A. Wooldridge

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Most scleractinian corals and many other cnidarians host intracellular photosynthetic dinoflagellate symbionts ("zooxanthellae". The zooxanthellae contribute to host metabolism and skeletogenesis to such an extent that this symbiosis is well recognised for its contribution in creating the coral reef ecosystem. The stable functioning of cnidarian symbioses is however dependent upon the host's ability to maintain demographic control of its algal partner. In this review, I explain how the modern envelope of seawater conditions found within many coral reef ecosystems (characterised by elevated temperatures, rising pCO2, and enriched nutrient levels are antagonistic toward the dominant host processes that restrict excessive symbiont proliferation. Moreover, I outline a new hypothesis and initial evidence base, which support the suggestion that the additional "excess" zooxanthellae fraction permitted by seawater pCO2 levels beyond 260 ppmv significantly increases the propensity for symbiosis breakdown ("bleaching" in response to temperature and irradiance extremes. The relevance of this biological threshold is discussed in terms of historical reef extinction events, glacial-interglacial climate cycles and the modern decline of coral reef ecosystems.

  13. A hypothesis linking sub-optimal seawater pCO2 conditions for cnidarian-Symbiodinium symbioses with the exceedence of the interglacial threshold (>260 ppmv)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wooldridge, S. A.

    2012-05-01

    Most scleractinian corals and many other cnidarians host intracellular photosynthetic dinoflagellate symbionts ("zooxanthellae"). The zooxanthellae contribute to host metabolism and skeletogenesis to such an extent that this symbiosis is well recognised for its contribution in creating the coral reef ecosystem. The stable functioning of cnidarian symbioses is however dependent upon the host's ability to maintain demographic control of its algal partner. In this review, I explain how the modern envelope of seawater conditions found within many coral reef ecosystems (characterised by elevated temperatures, rising pCO2, and enriched nutrient levels) are antagonistic toward the dominant host processes that restrict excessive symbiont proliferation. Moreover, I outline a new hypothesis and initial evidence base, which support the suggestion that the additional "excess" zooxanthellae fraction permitted by seawater pCO2 levels beyond 260 ppmv significantly increases the propensity for symbiosis breakdown ("bleaching") in response to temperature and irradiance extremes. The relevance of this biological threshold is discussed in terms of historical reef extinction events, glacial-interglacial climate cycles and the modern decline of coral reef ecosystems.

  14. Benthic diatom response to changing environmental conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cibic, Tamara; Comici, Cinzia; Bussani, Andrea; Del Negro, Paola

    2012-12-01

    In the Gulf of Trieste (northern Adriatic Sea, Italy) the benthic diatom community dynamics has been studied for seven years (1999-2005) at two sublittoral stations and related to variations of temperature, salinity, nutrient concentrations, freshwater inflow and mucilage. Bin-averaged temperature versus abundance of the main genera revealed that Nitzschia and Navicula presented a positive stepped trend with increasing temperature. An increase of ca. 860 ± 150 cells per cm3 per °C was calculated for Navicula and up to 590 ± 170 cells per cm3 per °C for Nitzschia. The genus Pleurosigma revealed a negative trend with increasing temperature, with a calculated decrease of ca. 140 ± 60 cells per cm3 per °C. A negative relation between Diploneis and temperature was found only in the shallower site. A peak of the tychopelagic genus Cylindrotheca was observed in correspondence with high salinity, but no significant results between bin-averaged salinity and benthic diatom abundance were found. Significant negative relations were obtained between bin-averaged abundance of Pleurosigma and H4SiO4 and NO3- at the deeper station and between the bin-averaged abundance of Gyrosigma and NH4+ at the coastal station. In this site the abundance of Gyrosigma showed a significant increasing trend over the study period. Navicula and Nitzschia seemed to suffer from the presence of mucilage events occurred in summer 2000 and 2004 whereas Diploneis occupied the ecological niche which remained temporarily uncovered by Navicula and Nitzschia. An exceptional freshwater plume with extremely high terrigenous input in November 2000 completely covered the benthic diatom community, causing a remarkable decrease in its total abundance in late autumn and winter 2000-01. The Gulf of Trieste may be considered a natural megacosm due to its geomorphologic characteristics and therefore the benthic diatom response to changing environmental conditions observed in this site could be extended beyond the

  15. Environmental conditions in displaced communities of Khartoum ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Inadequate environmental sanitation has been recognized as a public health hazard worldwide. Nearly one quarter of all deaths and of the total disease burden and slightly more than one-third for children can be attributed to the changes and degradation of the environment. This study examined the environmental ...

  16. Historicising and Globalising the African Environmental Condition ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Nevertheless, much of these scholarly debates configure environmentalism in colonial and neocolonial terms, thereby interpreting the historical roots and environmental impact of globalisation. This article, however, argues that Africa's high population, its chronic poverty and the fact that the continent is geologically old must ...

  17. Are environmental conditions in South African classrooms conducive for learning?

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Gibberd, Jeremy T

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Environmental factors have been shown to have a significant impact on quality of education. This exploratory study investigates environmental conditions in a case study classroom at a South African secondary school. It undertakes field measurements...

  18. Dynamic photosynthesis in different environmental conditions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kaiser, M.E.; Morales, A.; Harbinson, J.; Kromdijk, J.; Heuvelink, E.; Marcelis, L.F.M.

    2015-01-01

    Incident irradiance on plant leaves often fluctuates, causing dynamic photosynthesis. Whereas steady-state photosynthetic responses to environmental factors have been extensively studied, knowledge of dynamic modulation of photosynthesis remains scarce and scattered. This review addresses this

  19. Lunar Polar Environmental Testing: Regolith Simulant Conditioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleinhenz, Julie Elise

    2014-01-01

    As ISRU system development approaches flight fidelity, there is a need to test hardware in relevant environments. Extensive laboratory and field testing have involved relevant soil (lunar regolith simulants), but the current design iterations necessitate relevant pressure and temperature conditions. Including significant quantities of lunar regolith simulant in a thermal vacuum chamber poses unique challenges. These include facility operational challenges (dust tolerant hardware) and difficulty maintaining a pre-prepared soil state during pump down (consolidation state, moisture retention).For ISRU purposes, the regolith at the lunar poles will be of most interest due to the elevated water content. To test at polar conditions, the regolith simulant must be doped with water to an appropriate percentage and then chilled to cryogenic temperatures while exposed to vacuum conditions. A 1m tall, 28cm diameter bin of simulant was developed for testing these simulant preparation and drilling operations. The bin itself was wrapped with liquid nitrogen cooling loops (100K) so that the simulant bed reached an average temperature of 140K at vacuum. Post-test sampling was used to determine desiccation of the bed due to vacuum exposure. Depth dependent moisture data is presented from frozen and thawed soil samples.Following simulant only evacuation tests, drill hardware was incorporated into the vacuum chamber to test auguring techniques in the frozen soil at thermal vacuum conditions. The focus of this testing was to produce cuttings piles for a newly developed spectrometer to evaluate. This instrument, which is part of the RESOLVE program science hardware, detects water signatures from surface regolith. The drill performance, behavior of simulant during drilling, and characteristics of the cuttings piles will be offered.

  20. A shooting approach to suboptimal control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hull, David G.; Sheen, Jyh-Jong

    1991-01-01

    The shooting method is used to solve the suboptimal control problem where the control history is assumed to be piecewise linear. Suboptimal solutions can be obtained without difficulty and can lead to accurate approximate controls and good starting multipliers for the regular shooting method by increasing the number of nodes. Optimal planar launch trajectories are presented for the advanced launch system.

  1. Indoor Environmental Conditions and Sanitary Practices in Selected ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Rapidly urbanizing cities are witnessing an increase in Day care centres (DCCs) whose environmental conditions are substandard. This scenario has negative consequences on the health of the DCC attendees and yet information on some of the indicators such as the level of sanitary practices is not adequately ...

  2. Effect of environmental conditions on radon concentration-track ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Abstract. In this work, the effect of environmental conditions viz., temperature (Т) and relative humidity (RH) on the track density-radon concentrations calibration factor (K) has been studied for CR-39 and LR-115 track detectors. The factor K was determined using a reference radon chamber in the National Institute for ...

  3. Human Q fever incidence is associated to spatiotemporal environmental conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J.P.G. Van Leuken

    2016-12-01

    We conclude that environmental conditions are correlated to human Q fever incidence rate. Similar research with data from other outbreaks would be needed to more firmly establish our findings. This could lead to better estimations of the public health risk of a C. burnetii outbreak, and to more detailed and accurate hazard maps that could be used for spatial planning of livestock operations.

  4. Social Support, Environmental Condition and Nutritional Status of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Social Support, Environmental Condition and Nutritional Status of the Elderly in Ibadan. ... The respondents depend mainly on their children for financial and social support. None of the respondents had access to water sewage system, 88.0% and 82.7% had no access to portable water and electricity respectively.

  5. The Environmental Health Condition of The New University of Port ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The Environmental Health Condition of The New University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital. B Ordinioha, W Sawyer. Abstract. Introduction: The hospital plays a significant role in modern health care delivery; while it provides an avenue for the treatment of patients, it can also encourage the transmission of several ...

  6. Suboptimal evolutionary novel environments promote singular altered gravity responses of transcriptome during Drosophila metamorphosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herranz, Raul; Larkin, Oliver J; Hill, Richard J A; Lopez-Vidriero, Irene; van Loon, Jack J W A; Medina, F Javier

    2013-06-27

    Previous experiments have shown that the reduced gravity aboard the International Space Station (ISS) causes important alterations in Drosophila gene expression. These changes were shown to be intimately linked to environmental space-flight related constraints. Here, we use an array of different techniques for ground-based simulation of microgravity effects to assess the effect of suboptimal environmental conditions on the gene expression of Drosophila in reduced gravity. A global and integrative analysis, using "gene expression dynamics inspector" (GEDI) self-organizing maps, reveals different degrees in the responses of the transcriptome when using different environmental conditions or microgravity/hypergravity simulation devices. Although the genes that are affected are different in each simulation technique, we find that the same gene ontology groups, including at least one large multigene family related with behavior, stress response or organogenesis, are over represented in each case. These results suggest that the transcriptome as a whole can be finely tuned to gravity force. In optimum environmental conditions, the alteration of gravity has only mild effects on gene expression but when environmental conditions are far from optimal, the gene expression must be tuned greatly and effects become more robust, probably linked to the lack of experience of organisms exposed to evolutionary novel environments such as a gravitational free one.

  7. The growth response of plants to elevated CO2 under non-optimal environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poorter, Hendrik; Pérez-Soba, Marta

    2001-09-01

    Under benign environmental conditions, plant growth is generally stimulated by elevated atmospheric CO2 concentrations. When environmental conditions become sub- or supra-optimal for growth, changes in the biomass enhancement ratio (BER; total plant biomass at elevated CO2 divided by plant biomass at the current CO2 level) may occur. We analysed literature sources that studied CO2×environment interactions on the growth of herbaceous species and tree seedlings during the vegetative phase. For each experiment we calculated the difference in BER for plants that were grown under 'optimal' and 'non-optimal' conditions. Assuming that interactions would be most apparent if the environmental stress strongly diminished growth, we scaled the difference in the BER values by the growth reduction due to the stress factor. In our compilation we found a large variability in CO2×environment interactions between experiments. To test the impact of experimental design, we simulated a range of analyses with a plant-to-plant variation in size common in experimental plant populations, in combination with a number of replicates generally used in CO2×environment studies. A similar variation in results was found as in the compilation of real experiments, showing the strong impact of stochasticity. We therefore caution against strong inferences derived from single experiments and suggest rather a reliance on average interactions across a range of experiments. Averaged over the literature data available, low soil nutrient supply or sub-optimal temperatures were found to reduce the proportional growth stimulation of elevated CO2. In contrast, BER increased when plants were grown at low water supply, albeit relatively modestly. Reduced irradiance or high salinity caused BER to increase in some cases and decrease in others, resulting in an average interaction with elevated CO2 that was not significant. Under high ozone concentrations, the relative growth enhancement by elevated CO2 was

  8. The behavior of Kevlar fibers under environmental-stress conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perry, Mark Charles

    There are a myriad of mechanisms by which polymers can degrade and fail. It is therefore important to understand the physical mechanics, chemistry, their interactions, and kinetics. This pursuit becomes more than just "academic" because these mechanisms might just change with service conditions (i.e. environment and loading). If one does not understand these processes from the molecular to macroscopic scale it would be exceedingly difficult to gain information from accelerated testing because the mechanisms just might change from one condition to another. The purpose of this study was to probe these processes on scales ranging from molecular to macroscopic in environmental stress conditions. This study reports the results of environmental-stress degradation of Kevlar 49 fibers. The environmental agent of focus was the ubiquitous air pollutant complex NOsb{x}. Other materials and environments were investigated to a lesser extent for purposes of comparison. Mechanical property (i.e., short-term strength, modulus, and creep lifetime) degradation was examined using single fiber, yarn, and epoxy coated yarn (composite) specimens under environmental-stress conditions. Optical and scanning electron microscopes were employed to examine and compare the appearance of fracture features resulting from the various testing conditions. Atomic force microscopy augmented these studies with detailed topographical mappings and measures of the fracture surface frictional and modulus properties. Molecular processes (i.e., chain scission and other mechanical-chemical reactions) were probed by measures of changes in viscosity average molecular weight and the infrared spectra. It was demonstrated that environmental-stress degradation effects do occur in the Kevlar-NOsb{x} gas system. Strength decay in environmentally exposed unloaded fibers was demonstrated and a synergistic response in creep reduced fiber lifetimes by three orders of magnitude at moderate loadings. That is to say, the

  9. Transcriptional Profiling of Chromera velia Under Diverse Environmental Conditions

    KAUST Repository

    Tayyrov, Annageldi

    2014-05-01

    Since its description in 2008, Chromera velia has drawn profound interest as the closest free-­‐living photosynthetic relative of apicomplexan parasites that are significant pathogens, causing enormous health and economic problems. There-­‐ fore, this newly described species holds a great potential to understand evolu-­‐ tionary basis of how photosynthetic algae evolved into the fully pathogenic Apicomplexa and how their common ancestors may have lived before they evolved into obligate parasites. Hence, the aim of this work is to understand how C. velia function and respond to different environmental conditions. This study aims to reveal how C. velia is able to respond to environmental perturbations that are applied individually and simultaneously since, studying stress factors in separation fails to elucidate complex responses to multi stress factors and un-­‐ derstanding the systemic regulation of involved genes. To extract biologically significant information and to identify genes involved in various physiological processes under variety of environmental conditions (i.e. a combination of vary-­‐ ing temperatures, iron availability, and salinity in the growth medium) we pre-­‐ pared strand specific RNA-­‐seq libraries for 83 samples in diverse environmental conditions. Here, we report the set of significantly differentially expressed genes as a re-­‐ sponse to the each condition and their combinations. Several interesting up-­‐ regulated and down-­‐regulated genes were found and their functions and in-­‐ volved pathways were studied. We showed that the profound regulation of HSP20 proteins is significant under stress conditions and hypothesized that the-­‐ se proteins might be involved in their movements.

  10. Incentives, conditionality and collective action in payment for environmental services

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John M. Kerr

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available As payment for environmental services (PES initiatives spread to collectively managed natural resources, questions arise because the incentive structures that might be appropriate for individually managed resources will not necessarily promote the collective action required to manage the commons. Theory suggests challenges for cash payments to promote collective action, and for alternative payment types to facilitate conditionality. Possible ways to reconcile this disconnect involve conceiving of PES more broadly through the use of multiple forms of payment including non-cash incentives and placing greater focus on building institutions for collective action than on strict conditionality.

  11. Can environmental conditions experienced in early life influence future generations?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burton, Tim; Metcalfe, Neil B.

    2014-01-01

    The consequences of early developmental conditions for performance in later life are now subjected to convergent interest from many different biological sub-disciplines. However, striking data, largely from the biomedical literature, show that environmental effects experienced even before conception can be transmissible to subsequent generations. Here, we review the growing evidence from natural systems for these cross-generational effects of early life conditions, showing that they can be generated by diverse environmental stressors, affect offspring in many ways and can be transmitted directly or indirectly by both parental lines for several generations. In doing so, we emphasize why early life might be so sensitive to the transmission of environmentally induced effects across generations. We also summarize recent theoretical advancements within the field of developmental plasticity, and discuss how parents might assemble different ‘internal’ and ‘external’ cues, even from the earliest stages of life, to instruct their investment decisions in offspring. In doing so, we provide a preliminary framework within the context of adaptive plasticity for understanding inter-generational phenomena that arise from early life conditions. PMID:24807254

  12. Suboptimal glycemic control in type 2 diabetes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nefs, Giesje; Pouwer, F; Denollet, J

    2012-01-01

    , clinical, lifestyle and psychological factors between 2005 and 2009. The Edinburgh Depression Scale was used to assess symptoms of depressed mood, anhedonia and anxiety. Suboptimal glycemic control was defined as HbA(1c) values ≥7%, with 29.8% of the sample (n=1718) scoring above this cut......-off. In univariate logistic regression analyses, anhedonia was significantly associated with suboptimal glycemic control (OR 1.29, 95% CI 1.09-1.52), while both depressed mood (OR 1.04, 0.88-1.22) and anxiety (OR 0.99, 0.83-1.19) were not. The association between anhedonia and glycemic control remained after...

  13. Evaluation of the Environmental Health Conditions of Qom Hotels & Inns

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. Farzinnia

    2009-02-01

    Full Text Available Background and ObjectivesTourism is one of the three major global industries with 4 percent annual economic growth. Qom with roughly 17 million tourists in 2005 was the second religious tourism center in Iran. This study was designed to determine the environmental health criteria of Qom hotels and inns in 2007.MethodsThis descriptive - cross sectional study was carried out based on a standard check list of substance of edible, drinkable, cosmetic and hygienic products law from ministry of health and medical sciences. The checklist included 73 questions which were completed by face to face interviews and sanitary inspections. After analyzing the results of each residential center, the questionnaires were classified into three categories: hygienic (over 80 score, sanitary (40-79 and unacceptable centers (less than 40. The data were presented and analyzed by descriptive and analytical statistical methods such as X 2 and Fisher exact test.ResultsThe percentages of hygienic, sanitary and unacceptable conditions of hotels and inns were 35.5, 54.8 and 9.7, respectively. There was a direct relationship between academic degree of residential managers and the validity of employees health card (P=0.042 ConclusionBased on this the research, the environmental status of Qom hotels and inns was in relatively desirable conditions. Residential places with unacceptable condition were almost located in the old region of the city (e.g. around the Holly Shrine. Due to the structural failures, architectural problems and tremendous cost for repairs, it’s better that their activities be stopped and banned by government. With regard to the high percentage of hotels with sanitary conditions, at least improvements in health conditions accompanied by training and supervision are recommended. Keywords: Environmental Health; Environment and Public Health; Hotel; Inn; Qom, Iran.

  14. Protection of chemolithoautotrophic bacteria exposed to simulated Mars environmental conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gómez, Felipe; Mateo-Martí, Eva; Prieto-Ballesteros, Olga; Martín-Gago, Jose; Amils, Ricardo

    2010-10-01

    Current surface conditions (strong oxidative atmosphere, UV radiation, low temperatures and xeric conditions) on Mars are considered extremely challenging for life. The question is whether there are any features on Mars that could exert a protective effect against the sterilizing conditions detected on its surface. Potential habitability in the subsurface would increase if the overlaying material played a protective role. With the aim of evaluating this possibility we studied the viability of two microorganisms under different conditions in a Mars simulation chamber. An acidophilic chemolithotroph isolated from Río Tinto belonging to the Acidithiobacillus genus and Deinococcus radiodurans, a radiation resistant microorganism, were exposed to simulated Mars conditions under the protection of a layer of ferric oxides and hydroxides, a Mars regolith analogue. Samples of these microorganisms were exposed to UV radiation in Mars atmospheric conditions at different time intervals under the protection of 2 and 5 mm layers of oxidized iron minerals. Viability was evaluated by inoculation on fresh media and characterization of their growth cultures. Here we report the survival capability of both bacteria to simulated Mars environmental conditions.

  15. Leaf-, panel- and latex-expressed sequenced tags from the rubber tree (Hevea brasiliensis) under cold-stressed and suboptimal growing conditions: the development of gene-targeted functional markers for stress response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silva, Carla C; Mantello, Camila C; Campos, Tatiana; Souza, Livia M; Gonçalves, Paulo S; Souza, Anete P

    2014-01-01

    Hevea brasiliensis is a native species of the Amazon Basin of South America and the primary source of natural rubber worldwide. Due to the occurrence of South American Leaf Blight disease in this area, rubber plantations have been extended to suboptimal regions. Rubber tree breeding is time-consuming and expensive, but molecular markers can serve as a tool for early evaluation, thus reducing time and costs. In this work, we constructed six different cDNA libraries with the aim of developing gene-targeted molecular markers for the rubber tree. A total of 8,263 reads were assembled, generating 5,025 unigenes that were analyzed; 912 expressed sequence tags (ESTs) represented new transcripts, and two sequences were highly up-regulated by cold stress. These unigenes were scanned for microsatellite (SSR) regions and single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). In total, 169 novel EST-SSR markers were developed; 138 loci were polymorphic in the rubber tree, and 98 % presented transferability to six other Hevea species. Locus duplication was observed in H. brasiliensis and other species. Additionally, 43 SNP markers in 13 sequences that showed similarity to proteins involved in stress response, latex biosynthesis and developmental processes were characterized. cDNA libraries are a rich source of SSR and SNP markers and enable the identification of new transcripts. The new markers developed here will be a valuable resource for linkage mapping, QTL identification and other studies in the rubber tree and can also be used to evaluate the genetic variability of other Hevea species, which are valuable assets in rubber tree breeding.

  16. Environmental water demand assessment under climate change conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarzaeim, Parisa; Bozorg-Haddad, Omid; Fallah-Mehdipour, Elahe; Loáiciga, Hugo A

    2017-07-01

    Measures taken to cope with the possible effects of climate change on water resources management are key for the successful adaptation to such change. This work assesses the environmental water demand of the Karkheh river in the reach comprising Karkheh dam to the Hoor-al-Azim wetland, Iran, under climate change during the period 2010-2059. The assessment of the environmental demand applies (1) representative concentration pathways (RCPs) and (2) downscaling methods. The first phase of this work projects temperature and rainfall in the period 2010-2059 under three RCPs and with two downscaling methods. Thus, six climatic scenarios are generated. The results showed that temperature and rainfall average would increase in the range of 1.7-5.2 and 1.9-9.2%, respectively. Subsequently, flows corresponding to the six different climatic scenarios are simulated with the unit hydrographs and component flows from rainfall, evaporation, and stream flow data (IHACRES) rainfall-runoff model and are input to the Karkheh reservoir. The simulation results indicated increases of 0.9-7.7% in the average flow under the six simulation scenarios during the period of analysis. The second phase of this paper's methodology determines the monthly minimum environmental water demands of the Karkheh river associated with the six simulation scenarios using a hydrological method. The determined environmental demands are compared with historical ones. The results show that the temporal variation of monthly environmental demand would change under climate change conditions. Furthermore, some climatic scenarios project environmental water demand larger than and some of them project less than the baseline one.

  17. Environmental conditions for SMME development in a South African province

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Darma Mahadea

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available The development of entrepreneurship is the focus of considerable policy interest in South Africa and many other countries.  This is particularly in recognition of its contribution to economic growth, poverty alleviation and employment creation. In South Africa, various new strategies and institutions have recently been created with a view to empowering formerly disadvantaged members to enter the mainstream economy as entrepreneurs rather than job seekers. While the government directs considerable efforts to advancing Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMMEs, certain environmental factors can favour or hinder the optimal development of these firms. According to the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM reports, the level of entrepreneurial activity in South Africa is rather low in relation to that in other countries at a similar level of development.  This paper uses factor analysis to examine the internal and external environmental conditions influencing the development of small ventures on the basis of a survey conducted in Pietermaritzburg, the capital of the KZN province.  The results indicate that three clusters constrain SMME development in Pietermaritzburg:  management, finance and external environmental conditions. In the external set, rising crime levels, laws and regulations, and taxation are found to be significant constraints to the development of business firms.

  18. The effect and role of environmental conditions on magnetosome synthesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristina eMoisescu

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Magnetotactic bacteria (MTB are considered the model species for the controlled biomineralization of magnetic Fe oxide (magnetite, Fe3O4 or Fe sulfide (greigite, Fe3S4 nanocrystals in living organisms. In MTB, magnetic minerals form as membrane-bound, single-magnetic domain crystals known as magnetosomes and the synthesis of magnetosomes by MTB is a highly controlled process at the genetic level. Magnetosome crystals reveal highest purity and highest quality magnetic properties and are therefore increasingly sought after as novel nanoparticulate biomaterials for industrial and medical applications. In addition, magnetofossils, have been used as both past terrestrial and potential Martian life biosignature. However, until recently, the general belief was that the morphology of mature magnetite crystals formed by MTB was largely unaffected by environmental conditions. Here we review a series of studies that showed how changes in environmental factors such as temperature, pH, external Fe concentration, external magnetic fields, static or dynamic fluid conditions, and nutrient availability or concentrations can all affect the biomineralization of magnetite magnetosomes in MTB. The resulting variations in magnetic nanocrystals characteristics can have consequence both for their commercial value but also for their use as indicators for ancient life.In this paper we will review the recent findings regarding the influence of variable chemical and physical environmental control factors on the synthesis of magnetosome by MTB, and address the role of MTB in the global biogeochemical cycling of iron.

  19. Plankton bioindicators of environmental conditions in coastal lagoons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hemraj, Deevesh A.; Hossain, Md A.; Ye, Qifeng; Qin, Jian G.; Leterme, Sophie C.

    2017-01-01

    Coastal lagoons are characterised by strong spatial gradient of environmental parameters, especially hypersalinity, and are prone to anthropogenic disturbance. The Coorong (South Australia) is an inverse estuarine coastal lagoon separated from the sea by sand dunes. It is exposed to extreme water quality changes that affect its aquatic communities. Here, we used plankton as indicators of extreme environmental fluctuations to monitor and manage the environmental health of such complex systems. We defined the relationship of different plankton communities with water quality fluctuations and determined plankton species suitable for monitoring the ecosystem health. Two distinct communities of phytoplankton and zooplankton were identified, with salinity and nutrients being the principal factors impacting species distribution. Thus, two sets of indicator species were selected based on the different communities observed. Polychaete and gastropod larvae were positive indicators, showing salinity range restriction of brackish to marine. The distribution Acartia cf. fancetti represented healthy hypersaline conditions (salinity 40-60), while Cyclophora sp. and Scrippsiella sp. were negative indicators, correlating with extreme salinity and ammonia levels. The implementation of planktonic organisms as environmental indicators provided a constructive tool for the management of ecosystem health of the Coorong and will be applicable to similar coastal lagoons.

  20. Relating parasite communities to host environmental conditions using phylogenetic tools.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cabaret, J

    2003-12-01

    There are many tools available for analysing parasite communities, either based on the proportions or presence/absence of species. These analyses rely on phylogenetic distances, and analyses of actual characters (e.g. species). The phylogenetic analysis (Wanger parsimony) was compared to a cluster analysis (UPGMA) and correspondence analyses of two real helminth communities in sheep (one farm and with repeated sampling along time) or goats (several farms, each sampled once). The cladograms obtained using Wagner parsimony provided a clearer structuring of the helminth communities than classical analyses. The homogeneous groups of parasite communities on goat farms were significantly related (Fisher' exact test) to the environmental characteristics. The evolution along time pattern of change in the sheep infection of sheep was not the same for in all the animals, and two groups of communities could be distinguished in the last lamb cohorts. Phylogenetic analyses provide an effective performing tool to for interpreting the change in evolution of helminth communities with environmental conditions.

  1. Ecological conditions favoring budding in colonial organisms under environmental disturbance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mayuko Nakamaru

    Full Text Available Dispersal is a topic of great interest in ecology. Many organisms adopt one of two distinct dispersal tactics at reproduction: the production of small offspring that can disperse over long distances (such as seeds and spawned eggs, or budding. The latter is observed in some colonial organisms, such as clonal plants, corals and ants, in which (superorganisms split their body into components of relatively large size that disperse to a short distance. Contrary to the common dispersal viewpoint, short-dispersal colonial organisms often flourish even in environments with frequent disturbances. In this paper, we investigate the conditions that favor budding over long-distance dispersal of small offspring, focusing on the life history of the colony growth and the colony division ratio. These conditions are the relatively high mortality of very small colonies, logistic growth, the ability of dispersers to peacefully seek and settle unoccupied spaces, and small spatial scale of environmental disturbance. If these conditions hold, budding is advantageous even when environmental disturbance is frequent. These results suggest that the demography or life history of the colony underlies the behaviors of the colonial organisms.

  2. Assessing environmental conditions of Antarctic footpaths to support management decisions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tejedo, Pablo; Benayas, Javier; Cajiao, Daniela; Albertos, Belén; Lara, Francisco; Pertierra, Luis R; Andrés-Abellán, Manuela; Wic, Consuelo; Luciáñez, Maria José; Enríquez, Natalia; Justel, Ana; Reck, Günther K

    2016-07-15

    Thousands of tourists visit certain Antarctic sites each year, generating a wide variety of environmental impacts. Scientific knowledge of human activities and their impacts can help in the effective design of management measures and impact mitigation. We present a case study from Barrientos Island in which a management measure was originally put in place with the goal of minimizing environmental impacts but resulted in new undesired impacts. Two alternative footpaths used by tourist groups were compared. Both affected extensive moss carpets that cover the middle part of the island and that are very vulnerable to trampling. The first path has been used by tourists and scientists since over a decade and is a marked route that is clearly visible. The second one was created more recently. Several physical and biological indicators were measured in order to assess the environmental conditions for both paths. Some physical variables related to human impact were lower for the first path (e.g. soil penetration resistance and secondary treads), while other biochemical and microbiological variables were higher for the second path (e.g. β-glucosidase and phosphatase activities, soil respiration). Moss communities located along the new path were also more diverse and sensitive to trampling. Soil biota (Collembola) was also more abundant and richer. These data indicate that the decision to adopt the second path did not lead to the reduction of environmental impacts as this path runs over a more vulnerable area with more outstanding biological features (e.g. microbiota activity, flora and soil fauna diversity). In addition, the adoption of a new route effectively doubles the human footprint on the island. We propose using only the original path that is less vulnerable to the impacts of trampling. Finally from this process, we identify several key issues that may be taken into account when carrying out impact assessment and environmental management decision-making in the

  3. Environmental conditions and Puumala virus transmission in Belgium

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leirs Herwig

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Non-vector-borne zoonoses such as Puumala hantavirus (PUUV can be transmitted directly, by physical contact between infected and susceptible hosts, or indirectly, with the environment as an intermediate. The objective of this study is to better understand the causal link between environmental features and PUUV prevalence in bank vole population in Belgium, and hence with transmission risk to humans. Our hypothesis was that environmental conditions controlling the direct and indirect transmission paths differ, such that the risk of transmission to humans is not only determined by host abundance. We explored the relationship between, on one hand, environmental variables and, on the other hand, host abundance, PUUV prevalence in the host, and human cases of nephropathia epidemica (NE. Statistical analyses were carried out on 17 field sites situated in Belgian broadleaf forests. Results Linear regressions showed that landscape attributes, particularly landscape configuration, influence the abundance of hosts in broadleaf forests. Based on logistic regressions, we show that PUUV prevalence among bank voles is more linked to variables favouring the survival of the virus in the environment, and thus the indirect transmission: low winter temperatures are strongly linked to prevalence among bank voles, and high soil moisture is linked to the number of NE cases among humans. The transmission risk to humans therefore depends on the efficiency of the indirect transmission path. Human risk behaviours, such as the propensity for people to go in forest areas that best support the virus, also influence the number of human cases. Conclusion The transmission risk to humans of non-vector-borne zoonoses such as PUUV depends on a combination of various environmental factors. To understand the complex causal pathways between the environment and disease risk, one should distinguish between environmental factors related to the abundance of hosts

  4. Multimodal cues improve prey localization under complex environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rhebergen, F; Taylor, R C; Ryan, M J; Page, R A; Halfwerk, W

    2015-09-07

    Predators often eavesdrop on sexual displays of their prey. These displays can provide multimodal cues that aid predators, but the benefits in attending to them should depend on the environmental sensory conditions under which they forage. We assessed whether bats hunting for frogs use multimodal cues to locate their prey and whether their use varies with ambient conditions. We used a robotic set-up mimicking the sexual display of a male túngara frog (Physalaemus pustulosus) to test prey assessment by fringe-lipped bats (Trachops cirrhosus). These predatory bats primarily use sound of the frog's call to find their prey, but the bats also use echolocation cues returning from the frog's dynamically moving vocal sac. In the first experiment, we show that multimodal cues affect attack behaviour: bats made narrower flank attack angles on multimodal trials compared with unimodal trials during which they could only rely on the sound of the frog. In the second experiment, we explored the bat's use of prey cues in an acoustically more complex environment. Túngara frogs often form mixed-species choruses with other frogs, including the hourglass frog (Dendropsophus ebraccatus). Using a multi-speaker set-up, we tested bat approaches and attacks on the robofrog under three different levels of acoustic complexity: no calling D. ebraccatus males, two calling D. ebraccatus males and five D. ebraccatus males. We found that bats are more directional in their approach to the robofrog when more D. ebraccatus males were calling. Thus, bats seemed to benefit more from multimodal cues when confronted with increased levels of acoustic complexity in their foraging environments. Our data have important consequences for our understanding of the evolution of multimodal sexual displays as they reveal how environmental conditions can alter the natural selection pressures acting on them. © 2015 The Author(s).

  5. Springbok behaviour as affected by environmental conditions in the Kalahari

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hein Stapelberg

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available Springbok behavioural ecology in the Kalahari was examined with the use of public questionnaires and field forms. Springbok favoured grass and forbs overall more than shrubs and trees, but diet selection was influenced by time of day and season. Feeding was the most common activity and the frequency of occurrence varied during the day and between seasons. Weather and microhabitat conditions were found to have a significant effect on the feeding behaviour. Springbok fed in direct sunlight in the mornings and moved into the shade during the afternoon. More time was spent feeding in the shade during the warmer months than during the colder months, especially under northerly to northeasterly wind directions. Natural licks were commonly utilised. Herd sizes were found to increase during the cold-dry season and decrease during the hot-wet season. Springbok and blue wildebeest appeared to avoid competition by niche separation. The study showed that springbok behaviour was significantly affected by environmental conditions. These results imply that changes in climatic conditions, such as those predicted by climate change, or changes in vegetation structure due to degradation, can negatively affect springbok behaviour.

  6. Environmental Radon Gas and Degenerative Conditions An Overview

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Groves-Kirkby, C.J. [Medical Physics Department, Northampton General Hospital, Northampton NN1 5BD (United Kingdom)]|[School of Health, University of Northampton, Northampton NN2 7AL (United Kingdom); Denman, A.R. [Medical Physics Department, Northampton General Hospital, Northampton NN1 5BD (United Kingdom); Woolridge, A.C. [School of Health, University of Northampton, Northampton NN2 7AL (United Kingdom)]|[School of Applied Sciences, University of Northampton, Northampton NN2 7AL (United Kingdom); Phillips, P.S. [School of Applied Sciences, University of Northampton, Northampton NN2 7AL (United Kingdom); Phillips, C. [School of Health, University of Northampton, Northampton NN2 7AL (United Kingdom)

    2006-07-01

    Radon, a naturally occurring radioactive gas, has variable distribution in the environment as a decay product of uranium occurring in a wide range of rocks, soils and building materials. Although radon dissipates rapidly in outdoor air, it concentrates in the built environment, and inhalation of {sup 222}Rn and its progeny {sup 218}Po and {sup 214}Po is believed to provide the majority of the radioactive dose to the respiratory system. While the connection between radon and lung cancer has long been recognised and investigated, recent studies have highlighted potential links between radon and other conditions, among them Multiple Sclerosis, Alzheimer and Parkinson Diseases, and Paget Disease of Bone. A strong case exists for clarifying the relationship between radon and these other conditions, not least since radon remediation to reduce lung cancer may conceivably have additional benefits hitherto unrecognized. The present status of the postulated links between environmental radon gas and degenerative conditions is reviewed, and recommendations for further research into levering current anti-radon campaigns are made. (authors)

  7. [Individual and environmental conditions influencing puberty in girls].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kulik-Rechberger, Beata

    2008-10-01

    Puberty is a period in a life of a child when sex characteristics occur and growth velocity accelerates. According to adopted norms, the occurrence of signs of puberty before the age of 8 is regarded as precocious. This article focused on early pubertal development, as well as increased incidence of sexual precocity, in American girls and girls who had been adopted from developing countries into Western European countries. Environmental and individual conditions that influence normal and precocious puberty have been discussed. On analysis of professional literature, no alarming advancement in timing of puberty in Polish girls was ascertained. However, taking into consideration certain threats resulting from premature puberty (early initiation of sexual life, increased risk of sexually transmitted infections, early teenage pregnancies, breast cancer, obesity with all its consequences in adulthood), it is necessary to continuously monitor this occurrence, with special attention paid to the factors which may accelerate it.

  8. Relating parasite communities to host environmental conditions using phylogenetic tools

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cabaret J.

    2003-12-01

    Full Text Available There are many tools available for analysing parasite communities, either based on the proportions or presence/absence of species. These analyses rely on phylogenetic distances, and analyses of actual characters (e.g. species. The phylogenetic analysis (Wagner parsimony was compared to a cluster analysis (UPGMA and correspondence analyses of two real helminth communities in sheep (one farm and with repeated sampling along time or goats (several farms, each sampled once. The cladograms obtained using Wagner parsimony provided a clearer structuring of the helminth communities than classical analyses. The homogeneous groups of parasite communities on goat farms were significantly related (Fisher exact lest to the environmental characteristics. The evolution along time pattern of change in the sheep infection of sheep was not the same for in all the animals, and two groups of communities could be distinguished in the last lamb cohorts. Phylogenetic analyses provide an effective performing tool to for interpreting the change in evolution of helminth communities with environmental conditions.

  9. The setting characteristics of MTA Plus in different environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Camilleri, J; Formosa, L; Damidot, D

    2013-09-01

    Characterization and assessment of the hydration reaction of mineral trioxide aggregate (MTA) Plus exposed to different environmental conditions. The specific surface area, surface morphology and characterization of un-hydrated MTA Plus (Avalon Biomed Inc. Bradenton, FL, USA) were investigated. The specific surface area was compared with that of ProRoot MTA (Dentsply International, Tulsa Dental Specialties, Johnson City, TN, USA). The reaction rate was determined using calorimetry, and the hydrated cement was assessed for setting time (determined using an indentation technique), and the set material was characterized using X-ray diffraction analysis, scanning electron microscopy and X-ray energy-dispersive analysis. Atomic ratio plots were drawn to establish the relationship of the hydration products. Three different environmental conditions namely dry or immersed in either water or Hank's balanced salt solution (HBSS) were used. Mineral trioxide aggregate Plus had a higher specific surface area than ProRoot MTA. The hydration reaction was exothermic. The setting time of MTA Plus was retarded when in contact with fluids (P hydroxide, ettringite and monosulfate phases. Bismuth was incorporated in the calcium silicate hydrate structure. The hydration of the core material was not affected by contact with the different solutions but the periphery exhibited microcracking, leaching of calcium hydroxide, partial decalcification of calcium silicate hydrate, inhibition of hydration in contact with the physiological solution. The novel MTA Plus was finer than ProRoot MTA but had a similar chemical composition. MTA Plus in direct contact with fluids exhibited partial decalcification of calcium silicate hydrate in contact with the solution, microcracking and leaching of calcium hydroxide. Interaction with a physiological solution resulted in inhibition of hydration. © 2013 International Endodontic Journal. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. Early environmental conditions shape personality types in a jumping spider

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jannis eLiedtke

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Individuals of many species across the animal kingdom are found to be less plastic than expected, even in behavioral traits. The existence of consistent behavioral differences between individuals, termed personality differences, is puzzling, since plastic behavior is considered ideal to enable animals to adaptively respond to changes in environmental conditions. In order to elucidate which mechanisms are important for the evolution of personality differences, it is crucial to understand which aspects of the environment are important for the development of personality differences. Here, we tested whether physical or social aspects of the environment during development influence individual differentiation (mean level of behavior using the jumping spider Marpissa muscosa. Furthermore, we assessed whether those behaviors were repeatable, i.e. whether personalities existed. We applied a split-brood design and raised spider siblings in three different environments: a deprived environment with no enrichment, a socially and a physically enriched environment. We focused on exploratory behavior and repeatedly assessed individual behavior in a novel environment and a novel object test. Results show that the environment during development influenced spiders’ exploratory tendencies: spiders raised in enriched environments tended to be more exploratory. Most investigated behaviors were repeatable (i.e. personalities existed across all individuals tested, whereas only few behaviors were also repeatable across individuals that had experienced the same environmental condition. Taken together, our results indicate that external stimuli can influence the development of one aspect of personality, the inter-individual variation (mean level of behavior, in a jumping spider. We also found family by environment interactions on behavioral traits potentially suggesting genetic variation in developmental plasticity.

  11. Environmental and sanitary conditions of Guanabara Bay, Rio de Janeiro

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    Giovana De Oliveira Fistarol

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Guanabara Bay is the second largest bay in the coast of Brazil, with an area of 384 km2. In its surroundings live circa 16 million inhabitants, out of which 6 million live in Rio de Janeiro city, one of the largest cities of the country, and the host of the 2016 Olympic Games. Anthropogenic interference in Guanabara Bay area started early in the XVI century, but environmental impacts escalated from 1930, when this region underwent an industrialization process. Herein we present an overview of the current environmental and sanitary conditions of Guanabara Bay, a consequence of all these decades of impacts. We will focus on microbial communities, how they may affect higher trophic levels of the aquatic community and also human health. The anthropogenic impacts in the bay are flagged by heavy eutrophication and by the emergence of pathogenic microorganisms that are either carried by domestic and/or hospital waste (e.g. virus, KPC-producing bacteria, and fecal coliforms, or that proliferate in such conditions (e.g. vibrios. Antibiotic resistance genes are commonly found in metagenomes of Guanabara Bay planktonic microorganisms. Furthermore, eutrophication results in recurrent algal blooms, with signs of a shift towards flagellated, mixotrophic groups, including several potentially harmful species. A recent large-scale fish kill episode, and a long trend decrease in fish stocks also reflects the bay’s degraded water quality. Although pollution of Guanabara Bay is not a recent problem, the hosting of the 2016 Olympic Games propelled the government to launch a series plans to restore the bay’s water quality. If all plans are fully implemented, the restoration of Guanabara Bay and its shores may be one of the best legacies of the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

  12. Degradation in perovskite solar cells stored under different environmental conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chauhan, Abhishek K.; Kumar, Pankaj

    2017-08-01

    Investigations carried out on the degradation of perovskite solar cells (PSCs) stored in different open air environmental conditions are reported here. The solar cells were stored in the open in the dark inside the laboratory (relative humidity 47  ±  5%, temperature 23  ±  4 °C), under compact fluorescent lamp (CFL) illumination (irradiance 10 mW cm2, relative humidity 47  ±  5%, temperature 23  ±  4 °C) and under natural sunlight outside the laboratory. In the outdoor storage situation the surrounding conditions varied from time to time and the environmental conditions during the day (irradiance 100 mW/cm2, relative humidity ~18%, temperature ~45 °C at noon) were entirely different from those at night (irradiance 0 mW/cm2, relative humidity ~66%, temperature ~16 °C at midnight). The photovoltaic parameters were measured from time to time inside the laboratory as per the International Summit on Organic Photovoltaic Stability (ISOS) protocols. All the photovoltaic parameters, such as short circuit current density (J sc), open circuit voltage (V oc), fill factor (FF) and power conversion efficiency (PCE), of the solar cells stored outdoors decayed more rapidly than those stored under CFL or in the dark. The solar cells stored in the dark exhibited maximum stability. While the encapsulated solar cells stored outdoors were completely dead after about 560 h, the solar cells stored under CFL illumination retained  >60% of their initial efficiency even after 1100 h. However, the solar cells stored in the dark and tested up to ~1100 h did not show any degradation in PCE but on the contrary exhibited slight improvement, and this improvement was mainly because of improvement in their V oc. Rapid degradation in the open air outside the laboratory under direct sunlight compared with the dark and CFL storage has been attributed to high temperature during the day, high humidity at night, high solar illumination intensity and the

  13. Environmental Conditions Determine the Course and Outcome of Phytoplankton Chytridiomycosis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Rohrlack

    Full Text Available Chytrid fungi are highly potent parasites of phytoplankton. They are thought to force phytoplankton organisms into an evolutionary arms race with high population diversity as the outcome. The underlying selection regime is known as Red Queen dynamics. However, our study suggests a more complex picture for chytrid parasitism in the cyanobacterium Planktothrix. Laboratory experiments identified a "cold thermal refuge", inside which Planktothrix can grow without chytrid infection. A field study in two Norwegian lakes underlined the ecological significance of this finding. The study utilized sediment DNA as a biological archive in combination with existing monitoring data. In one lake, temperature and light conditions forced Planktothrix outside the thermal refuge for most of the growing season. This probably resulted in Red Queen dynamics as suggested by a high parasitic pressure exerted by chytrids, an increase in Planktothrix genotype diversity over time, and a correlation between Planktothrix genotype diversity and duration of bloom events. In the second lake, a colder climate allowed Planktothrix to largely stay inside the thermal refuge. The parasitic pressure exerted by chytrids and Planktothrix genotype diversity remained low, indicating that Planktothrix successfully evaded the Red Queen dynamics. Episodic Planktothrix blooms were observed during spring and autumn circulation, in the metalimnion or under the ice. Interestingly, both lakes were dominated by the same or related Planktothrix genotypes. Taken together, our data suggest that, depending on environmental conditions, chytrid parasitism can impose distinct selection regimes on conspecific phytoplankton populations with similar genotype composition, causing these populations to behave and perhaps to evolve differently.

  14. Guaranteeing robustness of structural condition monitoring to environmental variability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Buren, Kendra; Reilly, Jack; Neal, Kyle; Edwards, Harry; Hemez, François

    2017-01-01

    Advances in sensor deployment and computational modeling have allowed significant strides to be recently made in the field of Structural Health Monitoring (SHM). One widely used SHM strategy is to perform a vibration analysis where a model of the structure's pristine (undamaged) condition is compared with vibration response data collected from the physical structure. Discrepancies between model predictions and monitoring data can be interpreted as structural damage. Unfortunately, multiple sources of uncertainty must also be considered in the analysis, including environmental variability, unknown model functional forms, and unknown values of model parameters. Not accounting for these sources of uncertainty can lead to false-positives or false-negatives in the structural condition assessment. To manage the uncertainty, we propose a robust SHM methodology that combines three technologies. A time series algorithm is trained using "baseline" data to predict the vibration response, compare predictions to actual measurements collected on a potentially damaged structure, and calculate a user-defined damage indicator. The second technology handles the uncertainty present in the problem. An analysis of robustness is performed to propagate this uncertainty through the time series algorithm and obtain the corresponding bounds of variation of the damage indicator. The uncertainty description and robustness analysis are both inspired by the theory of info-gap decision-making. Lastly, an appropriate "size" of the uncertainty space is determined through physical experiments performed in laboratory conditions. Our hypothesis is that examining how the uncertainty space changes throughout time might lead to superior diagnostics of structural damage as compared to only monitoring the damage indicator. This methodology is applied to a portal frame structure to assess if the strategy holds promise for robust SHM. (Publication approved for unlimited, public release on October-28

  15. Barnacles - recorders of environmental conditions with unique geochemical signatures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vinzenz Ullmann, Clemens; Gale, Andy; Korte, Christoph; Frei, Robert; Huggett, Jenny; Wray, Dave

    2017-04-01

    Barnacles are calcite-forming arthropods that occur in a wide range of habitats in modern times and are found in sedimentary successions reaching back to the Paleozoic. Despite potential use of their mostly low-Mg calcite hard parts for palaeoenvironmental reconstructions, their geochemical composition has been little studied. Here, we present the first comprehensive overview of barnacle geochemistry, with C and O isotope, as well as Mg/Ca, Sr/Ca, Mn/Ca and Fe/Ca data for multiple samples of 42 species covering the orders Sessilia, Scalpelliformes, and Lepadiformes. XRD analyses confirm calcite as the only significant carbonate mineral of the studied barnacle shell material. Apart from one species, median Mg/Ca ratios fall below 50 mmol/mol, the approximate limit for low-Mg-calcite. In the order Sessilia, the scuta and terga are on average enriched in Mg by 36 % over the unmoveable plates. Amongst the calcite-forming marine animals, barnacles have very high Sr/Ca ratios of 2.6 to 5.9 mmol/mol, amongst the highest known for calcite secreting animals. Mn/Ca and Fe/Ca ratios are commonly low and compatible with other modern shell calcite, but can be strongly enriched to > 1 mmol/mol in proximal habitats, particularly close to areas strongly affected by human activity. Carbon and oxygen isotope data indicate formation of the calcite in or near isotopic equilibrium with ambient water conditions. Apart from species showing δ18O values below 0 ‰ V-PDB, a negative correlation of oxygen isotope ratios with Sr/Ca ratios is observed, which may be related to metabolic activity. Compositional patterns in barnacle shell material, particularly high Sr concentrations and Mg distribution in shell plates of the Sessilia, point to a great potential of barnacles for high fidelity reconstruction of past seawater chemistry and environmental conditions complementary to other archives.

  16. On Suboptimal Solution of Antagonistic Matrix Games

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Goryashko Alexander

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The paper examines resource allocation games such as Colonel Blotto and Colonel Lotto games with the goal to develop tractable method for building suboptimal solution in mixed strategies of these games without solving the relevant optimization problem. The foundation of proposed method lies in the specific combinatorial properties of the partition games. It turned out that as far as distribution of resource along battlefield is concerned that pure strategies participating in ε-optimal solution possessed specific structure. Numerical experiments showed that these specific structural peculiarities can be easily reproduced utilizing previously found combinatorial properties of partition. As a result, we get ε-optimal solution of partition games and support set mixed strategies can be computed in polynomial time.

  17. Effects of Environmental Conditions on an Urban Wetland's Methane Fluxes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naor Azrieli, L.; Morin, T. H.; Bohrer, G.; Schafer, K. V.; Brooker, M.; Mitsch, W. J.

    2013-12-01

    Methane emissions from wetlands are the largest natural source of uncertainty in the global methane (CH4) budget. Wetlands are highly productive ecosystems with a large carbon sequestration potential. While wetlands are a net sink for carbon dioxide, they also release methane, a potent greenhouse gas. To effectively develop wetland management techniques, it is important to properly calculate the carbon budget of wetlands by understand the driving factors of methane fluxes. We constructed an eddy flux covariance system in the Olentangy River Wetland Research Park, a series of created and restored wetland in Columbus Ohio. Through the use of high frequency open path infrared gas analyzer (IRGA) sensors, we have continuously monitored the methane fluxes associated with the wetland since May 2011. To account for the heterogeneous landscape surrounding the tower, a footprint analysis was used to isolate data originating from within the wetland. Continuous measurements of the meteorological and environmental conditions at the wetlands coinciding with the flux measurements allow the interactions between methane fluxes and the climate and ecological forcing to be studied. The wintertime daily cycle of methane peaks around midday indicating a typical diurnal pattern in cold months. In the summer, the peak shifts to earlier in the day and also includes a daily peak occurring at approximately 10 AM. We believe this peak is associated with the onset of photosynthesis in Typha latifolia flushing methane from the plant's air filled tissue. Correlations with methane fluxes include latent heat flux, soil temperature, and incoming radiation. The connection to radiation may be further evidence of plant activity as a driver of methane fluxes. Higher methane fluxes corresponding with higher soil temperature indicates that warmer days stimulate the methanogenic consortium. Further analysis will focus on separating the methane fluxes into emissions from different terrain types within

  18. Research on how environmental conditions can affect the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    spamer

    ships between single environmental parameters and recruitment, the environmental parameter has often ... tions, and the frequency with which research ships could be deployed. In coastal upwelling systems, ...... this theory could not be adequately substantiated because of a lack of information on the distribution of eggs ...

  19. Examining environmental condition on the growth areas of Turkish ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    In this study, recent hazelnut growth areas were determined by Remote Sensing techniques for Trabzon province of Turkey. By using Geographical Information Systems (GIS) techniques, environmental data such as elevation, slope, aspect, geology, and soil data were produced and analyzed to examine environmental ...

  20. Suboptimal Criterion Learning in Static and Dynamic Environments.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elyse H Norton

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Humans often make decisions based on uncertain sensory information. Signal detection theory (SDT describes detection and discrimination decisions as a comparison of stimulus "strength" to a fixed decision criterion. However, recent research suggests that current responses depend on the recent history of stimuli and previous responses, suggesting that the decision criterion is updated trial-by-trial. The mechanisms underpinning criterion setting remain unknown. Here, we examine how observers learn to set a decision criterion in an orientation-discrimination task under both static and dynamic conditions. To investigate mechanisms underlying trial-by-trial criterion placement, we introduce a novel task in which participants explicitly set the criterion, and compare it to a more traditional discrimination task, allowing us to model this explicit indication of criterion dynamics. In each task, stimuli were ellipses with principal orientations drawn from two categories: Gaussian distributions with different means and equal variance. In the covert-criterion task, observers categorized a displayed ellipse. In the overt-criterion task, observers adjusted the orientation of a line that served as the discrimination criterion for a subsequently presented ellipse. We compared performance to the ideal Bayesian learner and several suboptimal models that varied in both computational and memory demands. Under static and dynamic conditions, we found that, in both tasks, observers used suboptimal learning rules. In most conditions, a model in which the recent history of past samples determines a belief about category means fit the data best for most observers and on average. Our results reveal dynamic adjustment of discrimination criterion, even after prolonged training, and indicate how decision criteria are updated over time.

  1. Investigating the environmental costs of deteriorating road conditions in South Africa

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Mashoko, L

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available The potential environmental impacts of deteriorating road conditions on logistics systems and the national economy have not received significant attention. This study gives an estimate of the potential environmental costs of deteriorating road...

  2. China suboptimal health cohort study: rationale, design and baseline characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Youxin; Ge, Siqi; Yan, Yuxiang; Wang, Anxin; Zhao, Zhongyao; Yu, Xinwei; Qiu, Jing; Alzain, Mohamed Ali; Wang, Hao; Fang, Honghong; Gao, Qing; Song, Manshu; Zhang, Jie; Zhou, Yong; Wang, Wei

    2016-10-13

    Suboptimal health status (SHS) is a physical state between health and disease, characterized by the perception of health complaints, general weakness, chronic fatigue and low energy levels. SHS is proposed by the ancient concept of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) from the perspective of preservative, predictive and personalized (precision) medicine. We previously created the suboptimal health status questionnaire 25 (SHSQ-25), a novel instrument to measure SHS, validated in various populations. SHSQ-25 thus affords a window of opportunity for early detection and intervention, contributing to the reduction of chronic disease burdens. To investigate the causative effect of SHS in non-communicable chronic diseases (NCD), we initiated the China suboptimal health cohort study (COACS), a longitudinal study starting from 2013. Phase I of the study involved a cross-sectional survey aimed at identifying the risk/protective factors associated with SHS; and Phase II: a longitudinal yearly follow-up study investigating how SHS contributes to the incidence and pattern of NCD. (1) Cross-sectional survey: in total, 4313 participants (53.8 % women) aged from 18 to 65 years were included in the cohort. The prevalence of SHS was 9.0 % using SHS score of 35 as threshold. Women showed a significantly higher prevalence of SHS (10.6 % in the female vs. 7.2 % in the male, P differed significantly between subjects of SHS (SHS score ≥35) and those of ideal health (SHS score difference in prevalence of SHS might partly explain the gender difference of incidence of certain chronic diseases. The COACS will enable a thorough characterization of SHS and establish a cohort that will be used for longitudinal analyses of the interaction between the genetic, lifestyle and environmental factors that contribute to the onset and etiology of targeted chronic diseases. The study together with the designed prospective cohort provides a chance to characterize and evaluate the effect of SHS

  3. 40 CFR 86.161-00 - Air conditioning environmental test facility ambient requirements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 18 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Air conditioning environmental test... conditioning environmental test facility ambient requirements. The goal of an air conditioning test facility is... elements that are discussed are ambient air temperature and humidity, minimum test cell size, solar heating...

  4. Impact of environmental conditions on sub-surface storage tanks ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Cast iron made storage tanks with gasoline fluid were buried under the soil at a depth of 4 m under various environment conditions. The simulated conditions include natural rain fail, temperature and acidic, alkaline and neutral soils. A control condition of neutral sea sand as base and filling materials were also investigated.

  5. Organic Synthesis under Solvent-free Condition. An Environmentally ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    environmental pollution caused by solvents and also their academic interest in solid-solid reactions have led them in recent times to develop methodologies for solvent-free reac- tions with considerable success. The Function of a Solvent. A general assumption with regard to organic reactions is that they are performed in a ...

  6. Environmental conditions and the storage of audiovisual materials in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This article discusses environmental factors which affect audiovisual (AV) materials in east and southern Africa. Since countries in the East and Southern Africa Regional Branch of the International Council on Archives (ESARBICA) are in a tropical region, AV materials are affected by high temperatures which result in ...

  7. Marine environmental conditions in the SW Indian Ocean and ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Dry weather prevails in a NW-SE band across Madagascar and the adjacent island nations; and, - Sea surface temperatures (SST) off Angola increase well in advance. Further work is needed to compare marine environmental signals that could emerge from locally sourced fish catch data and those reported here with the ...

  8. Effect of environmental conditions on the genotypic difference in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Jane

    2011-10-03

    #, ... Selection for nitrogen (N) efficient cultivars is typically conducted under favorable field conditions with only difference in soil N availability. ..... biomass, and radiation utilization. Field Crops Res. 31: 233-252. Mackay AD ...

  9. The growth response of plants to elevated CO2 under non-optimal environmental conditions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Poorter, H.; Pérez-Soba, M.

    2001-01-01

    Under benign environmental conditions, plant growth is generally stimulated by elevated atmospheric CO2 concentrations. When environmental conditions become sub- or supra-optimal for growth, changes in the biomass enhancement ratio (BER; total plant biomass at elevated CO2 divided by plant biomass

  10. Environmental conditions regulate the impact of plants on cloud formation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, D. F.; Buchholz, A.; Tillmann, R.; Kleist, E.; Wu, C.; Rubach, F.; Kiendler-Scharr, A.; Rudich, Y.; Wildt, J.; Mentel, Th. F.

    2017-02-01

    The terrestrial vegetation emits large amounts of volatile organic compounds (VOC) into the atmosphere, which on oxidation produce secondary organic aerosol (SOA). By acting as cloud condensation nuclei (CCN), SOA influences cloud formation and climate. In a warming climate, changes in environmental factors can cause stresses to plants, inducing changes of the emitted VOC. These can modify particle size and composition. Here we report how induced emissions eventually affect CCN activity of SOA, a key parameter in cloud formation. For boreal forest tree species, insect infestation by aphids causes additional VOC emissions which modifies SOA composition thus hygroscopicity and CCN activity. Moderate heat increases the total amount of constitutive VOC, which has a minor effect on hygroscopicity, but affects CCN activity by increasing the particles' size. The coupling of plant stresses, VOC composition and CCN activity points to an important impact of induced plant emissions on cloud formation and climate.

  11. Environmental embrittlement of iron aluminides under cyclic loading conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Castagna, A.; Alven, D.A.; Stoloff, N.S. [Rensselaer Polytechnic Inst., Troy, NY (United States)

    1995-08-01

    The tensile and fatigue crack growth behavior in air in hydrogen and in oxygen of an Fe-Al-Cr-Zr alloy is described. The results are compared to data for FA-129. A detailed analysis of frequency effects on fatigue crack growth rates of FA-129, tested in the B2 condition, shows that dislocation transport of hydrogen from the surface is the rate limiting step in fatigue crack growth.

  12. Differential effects of genetic vs. environmental quality in Drosophila melanogaster suggest multiple forms of condition dependence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonduriansky, Russell; Mallet, Martin A; Arbuthnott, Devin; Pawlowsky-Glahn, Vera; Egozcue, Juan José; Rundle, Howard D

    2015-04-01

    Condition is a central concept in evolutionary ecology, but the roles of genetic and environmental quality in condition-dependent trait expression remain poorly understood. Theory suggests that condition integrates genetic, epigenetic and somatic factors, and therefore predicts alignment between the phenotypic effects of genetic and environmental quality. To test this key prediction, we manipulated both genetic (mutational) and environmental (dietary) quality in Drosophila melanogaster and examined responses in morphological and chemical (cuticular hydrocarbon, CHC) traits in both sexes. While the phenotypic effects of diet were consistent among genotypes, effects of mutation load varied in magnitude and direction. Average effects of diet and mutation were aligned for most morphological traits, but non-aligned for the male sexcombs and CHCs in both sexes. Our results suggest the existence of distinct forms of condition dependence, one integrating both genetic and environmental effects and the other purely environmental. We propose a model to account for these observations. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  13. Environmental Condition Assessment of US Military Installations Using GIS Based Spatial Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singer, Steve; Wang, Guangxing; Howard, Heidi; Anderson, Alan

    2012-08-01

    Environment functions in various aspects including soil and water conservation, biodiversity and habitats, and landscape aesthetics. Comprehensive assessment of environmental condition is thus a great challenge. The issues include how to assess individual environmental components such as landscape aesthetics and integrate them into an indicator that can comprehensively quantify environmental condition. In this study, a geographic information systems based spatial multi-criteria decision analysis was used to integrate environmental variables and create the indicator. This approach was applied to Fort Riley Military installation in which land condition and its dynamics due to military training activities were assessed. The indicator was derived by integrating soil erosion, water quality, landscape fragmentation, landscape aesthetics, and noise based on the weights from the experts by assessing and ranking the environmental variables in terms of their importance. The results showed that landscape level indicator well quantified the overall environmental condition and its dynamics, while the indicator at level of patch that is defined as a homogeneous area that is different from its surroundings detailed the spatiotemporal variability of environmental condition. The environmental condition was mostly determined by soil erosion, then landscape fragmentation, water quality, landscape aesthetics, and noise. Overall, environmental condition at both landscape and patch levels greatly varied depending on the degree of ground and canopy disturbance and their spatial patterns due to military training activities and being related to slope. It was also determined the environment itself could be recovered quickly once military training was halt or reduced. Thus, this study provided an effective tool for the army land managers to monitor environmental dynamics and plan military training activities. Its limitation lies at that the obtained values of the indicator vary and are

  14. Environmental condition assessment of US military installations using GIS based spatial multi-criteria decision analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singer, Steve; Wang, Guangxing; Howard, Heidi; Anderson, Alan

    2012-08-01

    Environment functions in various aspects including soil and water conservation, biodiversity and habitats, and landscape aesthetics. Comprehensive assessment of environmental condition is thus a great challenge. The issues include how to assess individual environmental components such as landscape aesthetics and integrate them into an indicator that can comprehensively quantify environmental condition. In this study, a geographic information systems based spatial multi-criteria decision analysis was used to integrate environmental variables and create the indicator. This approach was applied to Fort Riley Military installation in which land condition and its dynamics due to military training activities were assessed. The indicator was derived by integrating soil erosion, water quality, landscape fragmentation, landscape aesthetics, and noise based on the weights from the experts by assessing and ranking the environmental variables in terms of their importance. The results showed that landscape level indicator well quantified the overall environmental condition and its dynamics, while the indicator at level of patch that is defined as a homogeneous area that is different from its surroundings detailed the spatiotemporal variability of environmental condition. The environmental condition was mostly determined by soil erosion, then landscape fragmentation, water quality, landscape aesthetics, and noise. Overall, environmental condition at both landscape and patch levels greatly varied depending on the degree of ground and canopy disturbance and their spatial patterns due to military training activities and being related to slope. It was also determined the environment itself could be recovered quickly once military training was halt or reduced. Thus, this study provided an effective tool for the army land managers to monitor environmental dynamics and plan military training activities. Its limitation lies at that the obtained values of the indicator vary and are

  15. Moose body mass variation revisited: disentangling effects of environmental conditions and genetics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herfindal, Ivar; Haanes, Hallvard; Solberg, Erling J; Røed, Knut H; Høgda, Kjell Arild; Sæther, Bernt-Erik

    2014-02-01

    Large-scale geographical variation in phenotypic traits within species is often correlated to local environmental conditions and population density. Such phenotypic variation has recently been shown to also be influenced by genetic structuring of populations. In ungulates, large-scale geographical variation in phenotypic traits, such as body mass, has been related to environmental conditions and population density, but little is known about the genetic influences. Research on the genetic structure of moose suggests two distinct genetic lineages in Norway, structured along a north-south gradient. This corresponds with many environmental gradients, thus genetic structuring provides an additional factor affecting geographical phenotypic variation in Norwegian moose. We investigated if genetic structure explained geographical variation in body mass in Norwegian moose while accounting for environmental conditions, age and sex, and if it captured some of the variance in body mass that previously was attributed to environmental factors. Genetic structuring of moose was the most important variable in explaining the geographic variation in body mass within age and sex classes. Several environmental variables also had strong explanatory power, related to habitat diversity, environmental seasonality and winter harshness. The results suggest that environmental conditions, landscape characteristics, and genetic structure should be evaluated together when explaining large-scale patterns in phenotypic characters or life history traits. However, to better understand the role of genetic and environmental effects on phenotypic traits in moose, an extended individual-based study of variation in fitness-related characters is needed, preferably in an area of convergence between different genetic lineages.

  16. PEDOGENIC CARBONATE δ13C AND ENVIRONMENTAL PRECIPITATION CONDITIONS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcella Catoni

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Carbon isotopic analysis is a useful tool for investigating paleoenvironments, as the pedogenic carbonate δ13C is related to δ13CSOM and to the proportions of C3/C4 plants. In this work we interpreted the paleoenvironmental conditions at the time of carbonate precipitation in soils formed under different climates and during different geological ages. Samples were taken from a Bk (PR1, Holocene and from two Bkm horizons (PR2 and PR3, Pleistocene. When the mean δ13C plant values and the most plausible paleotemperatures were used in the evaluation, PR1 showed a lower percentage of C4 plants (48% than Pleistocene soils (~53%, in agreement with paleoclimate changes. When instead the δ13C values of current plants were used for PR1, C4 plants ranged from 59 (12°C to 66% (18°C, suggesting two possible interpretations: either plant species changed during the Holocene, or the plant mean values normally used in the literature are not suitable for Pleistocene reconstructions

  17. Flashover Characteristics of Silicone Rubber Sheets under Various Environmental Conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arshad

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Silicone rubber insulators are replacing the conventional ceramic and porcelain insulators rapidly in power transmission and distribution industry. Very limited field knowledge is available about the performance of silicone rubber insulators in polluted and contaminated environments and therefore need further investigation. A comprehensive analysis of silicone rubber sheets (intended for coating outdoor insulators was carried out in this paper based on experimental results. The main performance parameters analyzed were arc inception voltage and flashover voltage. Dependence of these parameters on equivalent salt deposit density (ESDD, non-soluble salt deposit density (NSDD, relative humidity, ambient temperature, fog rate, dry band formation, dry band location and number of dry bands were investigated extensively. Insulator orientation and its effect on performance were also studied. The authors believe that this paper will provide a comprehensive knowledge about the flashover characteristics of silicone rubber insulators under humid, contaminated and dry band conditions. These results could be used in the selection and design of silicone rubber insulators for polluted environments.

  18. Sub-optimal birth weight in newborns of a high socioeconomic status population

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Conceição Aparecida de Mattos Segre

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Objective: To compare sub-optimal birth weight (2,500 to 2,999 g term newborns to appropriate for gestational age (birth weight ≥ 3,000 g term newborns, regarding maternal data and newborn morbidity and mortality. Methods: Single term newborns, appropriate for gestational age from a high socioeconomic population (n = 1,242 with birth weight ranging from 2,500 to 2,999 g (Group I were compared to 4,907 newborns with birth weight ≥ than 3,000 g (Group II. Maternal and newborn characteristics were compared between the groups. The Mann-Whitney test, χ2 test and multivariate analysis were used. The significance level adopted was p < 0.05. Rresults: The frequency of sub-optimal birth weight newborns in the population studied was 20.2%. There was a significant association between sub-optimal birth weight and maternal weight before pregnancy and body mass index, maternal weight gain, height, smoking habit and hypertension. Newborns’ 1-minute Apgar score, neonatal hypoglycemia, jaundice, transient tachypnea, congenital pneumonia and hospital stay were significantly different between the groups (p < 0.05. A significant relationship could not be established with the 5-minute Apgar score and pulmonary hypertension in both groups. Neonatal mortality did not differ between the groups. Cconclusions: Socioeconomic status was not a risk factor for sub-optimal birth weight in the studied population. Genetic and environmental factors were associated to sub-optimal weight and neonatal diseases. According to these data, this group of newborns should receive special attention from the health team.

  19. [Environmental conditions and family prevalence of obesity in children].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kołodziej, Karolina; Piaseczna-Piotrowska, Anna; Strzelczyk, Janusz

    2010-03-01

    Obesity, which is a chronic systemic disease, is one the main health problems in contemporary society. Prevalence of obesity in childhood obesity and promotes the occurrence of many chronic diseases into adulthood. The aim of the study was to assess the relationship between obesity and child obesity, and lifestyle conditions in the family. The study group included 100 children aged 4-18 years, with a body mass index (BMI) above 97 centile. Respondents (44 girls and 56 boys) were selected from among children treated in the period from April 2008 to May 2009, the Department of Pediatric Surgery and Urology with general diseases, scheduled treatments not associated with obesity. In each patient, based on a prepared questionnaire, has been interviewed for dietary habits, family history in the direction of obesity and other comorbidities. The measurements of height and weight and abdominal circumference and waist were also made. The studies show that obesity is most common in children aged 9-13 years. The majority of obese children has errors habits. In the study group found the relationship between the prevalence of obesity in children and obesity occurring in the immediate family. It was observed that, in the oldest patients (14-18 years) most attempts to treat obesity. The percentage of obesity in children and their parents were similar and remained tied with overweight and obesity in the family. Therapeutic interventions are undertaken mainly in older children. In addition, children aged 9-13 years usually reach for foods with a fast food, which can negatively associated with rarely undertaken interventions aimed at weight loss.

  20. Multivariate characterisation of environmental conditions for reindeer husbandry in Sweden

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henrik Lundqvist

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Pastoralism using semi-domesticated reindeer (Rangifer t. tarandus is a traditional livelihood in northern Fennoscandia. The area used for reindeer herding in Sweden covers as much as half of the country’s area. Variation in the productivity of reindeer husbandry is clearly affected by many biotic and abiotic factors. The aim of this investigation was to identify factor combinations which describe the spatial variation in conditions that plausibly determine productivity in reindeer herding. Initially, 37 variables representing geographical location, climate, weather episodes related to ice crust formation and insect harassment, topography, vegetation, forage abundance and qualities, and fragmentation of the ranges were derived, using prior ecological knowledge and spatially explicit data. The variables were mapped in a raster of 1958 squares of 100 km2 each, covering the entire Swedish reindeer herding area. Reductions of variables were performed with multivariate analyses in steps, ultimately retaining 15 variables. The first five principal components (PCs of these variables explained 84% of the total variation. The first component, related to major western mountain/eastern lowland gradients, already accounts for 49% of the variation. The following components explained variation ranging from 10% to 5.4%, and revealed spatial patterns in summer versus winter forage, climatic conditions and ice crust formation, abundance of forests and winter forage, and northward slopes together with valuable forest areas, respectively. A tentative zone division of the Swedish reindeer herding area into seven zones was made, based upon cluster analysis and spatial distribution of component scores. Extending this approach and method seems useful also in the understanding and management of other natural resources and national parks, especially with an ongoing global climate change perspective.Abstract in Swedish / Sammandrag:Multivariat karakterisering av grundf

  1. The Presence of Nanophase Al-Si-Fe Components at Mawrth Vallis Indicate Varying Environmental Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bishop, J. L.; Rampe, E. B.

    2014-07-01

    The presence of nanophase allophane, opal and Fe-rich material at Mawrth Vallis together with multiple phyllosilicates indicate varying environmental conditions over time and also suggests regionally different aqueous environments.

  2. Species richness of both native and invasive aquatic plants influenced by environmental conditions and human activity

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Capers, Robert S; Selsky, Roslyn; Bugbee, Gregory J; White, Jason C

    2009-01-01

    ...) lakes and ponds, collecting quantitative data on abundance and frequency. We used multiple linear and logistic regression to determine which environmental conditions were correlated with species richness of invasive and native plants...

  3. Environmental Conditions in Northern Gulf of Mexico Estuaries: Before and After the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill

    Science.gov (United States)

    When conducting an environmental assessment to determine the ecological effects of the Deepwater Horizon (DWH) Oil Spill in the Gulf of Mexico (GOM), baseline environmental data is essential to establish ecosystem condition prior to the incident. EPA’s National Coastal Assessment...

  4. Development of Sub-optimal Airway Protocols for the International Space Station (ISS) by the Medical Operation Support Team (MOST)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polk, James D.; Parazynski, Scott; Kelly, Scott; Hurst, Victor, IV; Doerr, Harold K.

    2007-01-01

    Airway management techniques are necessary to establish and maintain a patent airway while treating a patient undergoing respiratory distress. There are situations where such settings are suboptimal, thus causing the caregiver to adapt to these suboptimal conditions. Such occurrences are no exception aboard the International Space Station (ISS). As a result, the NASA flight surgeon (FS) and NASA astronaut cohorts must be ready to adapt their optimal airway management techniques for suboptimal situations. Based on previous work conducted by the Medical Operation Support Team (MOST) and other investigators, the MOST had members of both the FS and astronaut cohorts evaluate two oral airway insertion techniques for the Intubating Laryngeal Mask Airway (ILMA) to determine whether either technique is sufficient to perform in suboptimal conditions within a microgravity environment. Methods All experiments were conducted in a simulated microgravity environment provided by parabolic flight aboard DC-9 aircraft. Each participant acted as a caregiver and was directed to attempt both suboptimal ILMA insertion techniques following a preflight instruction session on the day of the flight and a demonstration of the technique by an anesthesiologist physician in the simulated microgravity environment aboard the aircraft. Results Fourteen participants conducted 46 trials of the suboptimal ILMA insertion techniques. Overall, 43 of 46 trials (94%) conducted were properly performed based on criteria developed by the MOST and other investigators. Discussion The study demonstrated the use of airway management techniques in suboptimal conditions relating to space flight. Use of these techniques will provide a crew with options for using the ILMA to manage airway issues aboard the ISS. Although it is understood that the optimal method for patient care during space flight is to have both patient and caregiver restrained, these techniques provide a needed backup should conditions not present

  5. Ways to improve the environmental conditions of their buses in operation on passenger routes of cities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melnychuk S.V.

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available The results of studies on operational and environmental parameters buses used on bus routes Zhitomir city. It uses statistical methods for determining the intensity of traffic, passenger traffic and ecology in traffic. To assess the environmental chosen stop with the greatest intensity of traffic, which is the probability of accumulation of pollution transport emissions that exceed permissible limits. Calculation of environmental pollution emission route for vehicles made stops street «Str. Hundreds of Heaven» «CUM», «vul. Hlibna» on the main trunk street Kievska. Results obtained environmental field experiments compared with the data defined calculation methods, based on the proposed use appropriate operational vehicles. The conclusions that indicate the seriousness of the problem and the urgency to address it. The system of environmental safety and road safety in Zhitomir requires significant improvements due to the increased quantities bus vehicles plying city routes. Recommendations to improve the ecological condition of intersections can be developed through the optimization of traffic using buses with environmentally improved operating parameters. Keywords: environmental and operational parameters; ecological safety; environmental assessment; intensity of traffic; passenger traffic; environmental conditions; operation; bus choice; stop.

  6. Analysis of the environmental conditions at Gale Crater from MSL/REMS measurements

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Martinez, G.; Torre-Juarez, M. de la; Vicente-Retortillo, A.; Kemppinen, O.; Renno, N.; Lemmon, M.

    2016-07-01

    The environmental conditions at Gale Crater during the first 1160 sols of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) mission are assessed using measurements taken by the Rover Environmental Monitoring Station (REMS) on-board the MSL Curiosity rover. REMS is a suite of sensors developed to assess the environmental conditions along the rover traverse. In particular, REMS has been measuring atmospheric pressure, atmospheric and ground temperature, relative humidity, UV radiation flux and wind speed. Here we analyze processed data with the highest confidence possible of atmospheric pressure, atmospheric and ground temperature and relative humidity. In addition, we estimate the daily UV irradiation at the surface of Gale Crater using dust opacity values derived from the Mastcam instrument. REMS is still in operation, but it has already provided the most comprehensive coverage of surface environmental conditions recorded by a spacecraft landed on Mars. (Author)

  7. Environmental conditions of some paddy cum prawn culture fields of Cochin backwaters, southwest coast of India

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Nair, K.K.C.; Sankaranarayanan, V.N.; Gopalakrishnan, T.C.; Balasubramanian, T.; Devi, C.B.L.; Aravindakshan, P.N.; Kutty, M.K.

    ecological distortions because of its proximity to the sea. The results indicate that the fields in areas 1 and 3 have environmental conditions highly suited for prawn culture whereas in area 2 the salinity conditions are not very conducive for prawn growth...

  8. Antecedent growth conditions alter retention of environmental Escherichia coli isolates in transiently wetted porous media

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yang, H.-H.; Morrow, J. B.; Grasso, D.

    2008-01-01

    retentive capacity, may present one such approach. Eight environmental E coli isolates were selected to conduct operational retention tests (ORT) with potential biobarrier materials Pyrax or dolomite, or silica glass as control. The conditions in the ORT were chosen to simulate conditioning by manure...

  9. ADAPTIVE SUBOPTIMAL CONTROL OF INPUT CONSTRAINED PLANTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valerii Azarskov

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract. This paper deals with adaptive regulation of a discrete-time linear time-invariant plant witharbitrary bounded disturbances whose control input is constrained to lie within certain limits. The adaptivecontrol algorithm exploits the one-step-ahead control strategy and the gradient projection type estimationprocedure using the modified dead zone. The convergence property of the estimation algorithm is shown tobe ensured. The sufficient conditions guaranteeing the global asymptotical stability and simultaneously thesuboptimality of the closed-loop systems are derived. Numerical examples and simulations are presented tosupport the theoretical results.

  10. Suboptimal palliative sedation in primary care: an exploration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pype, Peter; Teuwen, Inge; Mertens, Fien; Sercu, Marij; De Sutter, An

    2017-06-05

    Palliative sedation is a therapeutic option to control refractory symptoms in terminal palliative patients. This study aims at describing the occurrence and characteristics of suboptimal palliative sedations in primary care and at exploring the way general practitioners (GPs) experience suboptimal palliative sedation in their practice. We conducted a mixed methods study with a quantitative prospective survey in primary care and qualitative semi-structured interviews with GPs. The research team defined suboptimal palliative sedation as a time interval until deep sleep >1.5 h and/ or >2 awakenings after the start of the unconsciousness. Descriptive statistics were calculated on the quantitative data. Thematic analysis was used to analyse interview transcripts. We registered 63 palliative sedations in 1181 home deaths, 27 forms were completed. Eleven palliative sedations were suboptimal: eight due to the long time span until deep sleep; three due the number of unintended awakenings. GPs' interview analysis revealed two major themes: the shifting perception of failure and the burden of responsibility. Suboptimal palliative sedation occurs frequently in primary palliative care. Efficient communication towards family members is needed to prevent them from having unrealistic expectations and to prevent putting pressure on the GP to hasten the procedure. Sharing the burden of decision-making during the procedure with other health care professionals might diminish the heavy responsibility as perceived by GPs.

  11. The Influence of Individual Variability on Zooplankton Population Dynamics under Different Environmental Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bi, R.; Liu, H.

    2016-02-01

    Understanding how biological components respond to environmental changes could be insightful to predict ecosystem trajectories under different climate scenarios. Zooplankton are key components of marine ecosystems and changes in their dynamics could have major impact on ecosystem structure. We developed an individual-based model of a common coastal calanoid copepod Acartia tonsa to examine how environmental factors affect zooplankton population dynamics and explore the role of individual variability in sustaining population under various environmental conditions consisting of temperature, food concentration and salinity. Total abundance, egg production and proportion of survival were used to measure population success. Results suggested population benefits from high level of individual variability under extreme environmental conditions including unfavorable temperature, salinity, as well as low food concentration, and selection on fast-growers becomes stronger with increasing individual variability and increasing environmental stress. Multiple regression analysis showed that temperature, food concentration, salinity and individual variability have significant effects on survival of A. tonsa population. These results suggest that environmental factors have great influence on zooplankton population, and individual variability has important implications for population survivability under unfavorable conditions. Given that marine ecosystems are at risk from drastic environmental changes, understanding how individual variability sustains populations could increase our capability to predict population dynamics in a changing environment.

  12. Effects of Suboptimal Bidding in Combinatorial Auctions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, Stefan; Shabalin, Pasha; Bichler, Martin

    Though the VCG auction assumes a central place in the mechanism design literature, there are a number of reasons for favoring iterative combinatorial auction designs. Several promising ascending auction formats have been developed throughout the past few years based on primal-dual and subgradient algorithms and linear programming theory. Prices are interpreted as a feasible dual solution and the provisional allocation is interpreted as a feasible primal solution. iBundle( 3) (Parkes and Ungar 2000), dVSV (de Vries et al. 2007) and the Ascending Proxy auction (Ausubel and Milgrom 2002) result in VCG payoffs when the coalitional value function satisfies the buyer submodularity condition and bidders bid straightforward, which is an expost Nash equilibrium in that case. iBEA and CreditDebit auctions (Mishra and Parkes 2007) do not even require the buyer submodularity condition and achieve the same properties for general valuations. In many situations, however, one cannot assume bidders to bid straightforward and it is not clear from the theory how these non-linear personalized price auctions (NLPPAs) perform in this case. Robustness of auctions with respect to different bidding behavior is therefore a critical issue for any application. We have conducted a large number of computational experiments to analyze the performance of NLPPA designs with respect to different bidding strategies and different valuation models. We compare the results of NLPPAs to those of the VCG auction and those of iterative combinatorial auctions with approximate linear prices, such as ALPS (Bichler et al. 2009) and the Combinatorial Clock auction (Porter et al. 2003).

  13. Local environmental conditions and the stability of protective layers on steel surfaces

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jensen, J.P. [Technical Univ. of Denmark, Lyngby (Denmark); Bursik, A.

    1996-12-01

    Local environmental conditions determine whether the protective layers on steel surfaces are stable. With unfavorable local environmental conditions, the protective layers may be subject to damage. Taking the cation conductivity of all plant cycle streams <0.2 {mu}S/cm for granted, an adequate feed-water and - if applicable - boiler water conditioning is required to prevent such damage. Even if the mentioned conditions are met in a bulk, the local environmental conditions may be inadequate. The reasons for this may be the disregarding of interactions among material, design, and chemistry. The paper presents many possible mechanisms of protective layer damage that are directly influenced or exacerbated by plant cycle chemistry. Two items are discussed in more detail: First, the application of all volatile treatment for boiler water conditioning of drum boiler systems operating at low pressures and, second, the chemistry in the transition zone water/steam in the low pressure turbine. The latter is of major interest for the understanding and prevention of corrosion due to high concentration of impurities in the aqueous liquid phases. This is a typical example showing that local environmental conditions may fundamentally differ from the overall bulk chemistry. (au) 19 refs.

  14. Impact of the environmental conditions and substrate pre-treatment on whey protein hydrolysis: A review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheison, Seronei Chelulei; Kulozik, Ulrich

    2017-01-22

    Proteins in solution are subject to myriad forces stemming from interactions with each other as well as with the solvent media. The role of the environmental conditions, namely pH, temperature, ionic strength remains under-estimated yet it impacts protein conformations and consequently its interaction with, and susceptibility to, the enzyme. Enzymes, being proteins are also amenable to the environmental conditions because they are either activated or denatured depending on the choice of the conditions. Furthermore, enzyme specificity is restricted to a narrow regime of optimal conditions while opportunities outside the optimum conditions remain untapped. In addition, the composition of protein substrate (whether mixed or single purified) have been underestimated in previous studies. In addition, protein pre-treatment methods like heat denaturation prior to hydrolysis is a complex phenomenon whose progression is influenced by the environmental conditions including the presence or absence of sugars like lactose, ionic strength, purity of the protein, and the molecular structure of the mixed proteins particularly presence of free thiol groups. In this review, we revisit protein hydrolysis with a focus on the impact of the hydrolysis environment and show that preference of peptide bonds and/or one protein over another during hydrolysis is driven by the environmental conditions. Likewise, heat-denaturing is a process which is dependent on not only the environment but the presence or absence of other proteins.

  15. Suboptimal Rate Adaptive Resource Allocation for Downlink OFDMA Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sanam Sadr

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper aims to study the performance of low complexity adaptive resource allocation in the downlink of OFDMA systems with fixed or variable rate requirements (with fairness consideration. Two suboptimal resource allocation algorithms are proposed using the simplifying assumption of transmit power over the entire bandwidth. The objective of the first algorithm is to maximize the total throughput while maintaining rate proportionality among the users. The proposed suboptimal algorithm prioritizes the user with the highest sensitivity to the subcarrier allocation, and the variance over the subchannel gains is used to define the sensitivity of each user. The second algorithm concerns rate adaptive resource allocation in multiuser systems with fixed rate constraints. We propose a suboptimal joint subchannel and power allocation algorithm which prioritizes the users with the highest required data rates. The main feature of this algorithm is its low complexity while achieving the rate requirements.

  16. Suboptimal care in stillbirths - a retrospective audit study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saastad, Eli; Vangen, Siri; Frøen, J Frederik

    2007-01-01

    Stillbirth rates have decreased radically over the last decades. One reason for this is improved perinatal care. The aim of this study was to explore whether sub-optimal factors in stillbirths were more frequent among non-western than western women. Population-based perinatal audit of 356 stillbirths after gestational week 23, in 2 Norwegian counties during 1998-2003 (4.2 per 1,000 deliveries); of these 31% were born to non-western women. By audit, the stillbirths were attributed to optimal or sub-optimal care factors. Multivariate methods were used to analyse the data. Sub-optimal factors were identified in 37% of the deaths. When compared to western women, non-western women had an increased risk of stillbirth (OR: 2.2; 95% CI: 1.3-3.8), and an increased risk of sub-optimal care (OR: 2.4; 95% CI: 1.5-3.9). More often, non-western women received sub-optimal obstetric care (plabour progression. A common failure in antenatal care for both groups was unidentified or inadequate management of intrauterine growth restriction or decreased fetal movements. Non-western women were less prone to attend the program for antenatal care or to take the consequences of recommendations from health professionals. Inadequate communication was documented in 47% of non-western mothers; an interpreter was used in 29% of these cases. Non-western women constituted a risk group for sub-optimal care factors in stillbirths. Possibilities for improvements include a reduction of language barriers, better identification and management of growth restriction for both origin groups, and adequate intervention in complicated vaginal births; with increased vigilance towards non-western women.

  17. Maximum Likelihood Method for Predicting Environmental Conditions from Assemblage Composition: The R Package bio.infer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lester L. Yuan

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper provides a brief introduction to the R package bio.infer, a set of scripts that facilitates the use of maximum likelihood (ML methods for predicting environmental conditions from assemblage composition. Environmental conditions can often be inferred from only biological data, and these inferences are useful when other sources of data are unavailable. ML prediction methods are statistically rigorous and applicable to a broader set of problems than more commonly used weighted averaging techniques. However, ML methods require a substantially greater investment of time to program algorithms and to perform computations. This package is designed to reduce the effort required to apply ML prediction methods.

  18. Resistance of Microorganisms to Extreme Environmental Conditions and Its Contribution to Astrobiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pabulo Henrique Rampelotto

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available In the last decades, substantial changes have occurred regarding what scientists consider the limits of habitable environmental conditions. For every extreme environmental condition investigated, a variety of microorganisms have shown that not only can they tolerate these conditions, but that they also often require these extreme conditions for survival. Microbes can return to life even after hundreds of millions of years. Furthermore, a variety of studies demonstrate that microorganisms can survive under extreme conditions, such as ultracentrifugation, hypervelocity, shock pressure, high temperature variations, vacuums, and different ultraviolet and ionizing radiation intensities, which simulate the conditions that microbes could experience during the ejection from one planet, the journey through space, as well as the impact in another planet. With these discoveries, our knowledge about the biosphere has grown and the putative boundaries of life have expanded. The present work examines the recent discoveries and the principal advances concerning the resistance of microorganisms to extreme environmental conditions, and analyzes its contributions to the development of the main themes of astrobiology: the origins of life, the search for extraterrestrial life, and the dispersion of life in the Universe.

  19. Sacral Nerve Stimulation for Constipation: Suboptimal Outcome and Adverse Events

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Maeda, Yasuko; Lundby, Lilli; Buntzen, Steen

    2010-01-01

    Sacral nerve stimulation is an emerging treatment for patients with severe constipation. There has been no substantial report to date on suboptimal outcomes and complications. We report our experience of more than 6 years by focusing on incidents and the management of reportable events....

  20. Optimal and Suboptimal Noises Enhancing Mutual Information in Threshold System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhai, Qiqing; Wang, Youguo

    2016-05-01

    In this paper, we investigate the efficacy of noise enhancing information transmission in a threshold system. At first, in the frame of stochastic resonance (SR), optimal noise (Opt N) is derived to maximize mutual information (MI) of this nonlinear system. When input signal is discrete (binary), the optimal SR noise is found to have a finite distribution. In contrast, when input signal is continuous, the optimal SR noise is a constant one. In addition, suboptimal SR noises are explored as well with optimization methods when the types of noise added into the system are predetermined. We find that for small thresholds, suboptimal noises do not exist. Only when thresholds reach some level, do suboptimal noises come into effect. Meanwhile, we have discussed the impact of tails in noise distribution on SR effect. Finally, this paper extends the single-threshold system to an array of multi-threshold devices and presents the corresponding efficacy of information transmission produced by optimal and suboptimal SR noises. These results may be beneficial to quantization and coding.

  1. Suboptimal Utilisation of Resources in Sub-Saharan African Higher ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Suboptimal Utilisation of Resources in Sub-Saharan African Higher Education Institutions: the Case of Teaching Space at Makerere University. ... This means that the institutions need to evaluate their utilization of these resources—to pinpoint their need for the resources and potential for quality assurance. This paper reports ...

  2. When animals misbehave: analogs of human biases and suboptimal choice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zentall, Thomas R

    2015-03-01

    Humans tend to value rewards more if they have had to work hard to obtain them (justification of effort). Similarly they tend to persist in a task even when they would be better off beginning a new one (sunk cost). Humans also often give greater value to objects of good quality than the same objects together with objects of lesser quality (the less is more effect). Commercial gambling (lotteries and slot machines) is another example of suboptimal choice by humans because on average the rewards are less than the investment. In another example of a systematic bias, when humans try to estimate the probability of the occurrence of a low probability event, they often give too much weight to the results of a test, in spite of the fact that the known probability of a false alarm reduces the predictive value of the test (base rate neglect). In each of these examples, we have found that pigeons show a similar tendency to choose suboptimally. When one can show comparable findings of suboptimal choice in animals it suggests that whereas culture may reinforce certain suboptimal behavior, the behavior is likely to result from the overgeneralization of basic behavioral processes or predisposed heuristics that may have been appropriate in natural environments. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: "Tribute to Tom Zentall." Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Prevalence and predictors of sub-optimal medication adherence ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    In this study, the levels of adherence, prevalence and the predictors of suboptimal adherence were assessed in a sub-Saharan African setting. Methods: Three hundred and seventy (370) respondents with diagnoses of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or severe depression were randomly enrolled and interviewed at the ...

  4. Effects of substrata and environmental conditions on ecological succession on historic shipwrecks

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Duarte, Manuel M.; Fernández-Montblanc, Tomás; Bethencourt, Manuel; Izquierdo, Alfredo

    2018-01-01

    An understanding of the interactions between biological, chemical and physical dynamics is especially important for the adequate conservation of the Underwater Cultural Heritage. However, while physical and chemical processes are relatively well-investigated, the biological communities associated with these habitats are poorly studied. We compared the sessile community developed on panels of different materials placed on two historical shipwrecks, the Fougueux and the Bucentaure, from the Battle of Trafalgar (October 1805). Six materials used at the construction of vessels at the 18th and 19th centuries were selected: copper, brass, cast iron, carbon steel, pine and oak. The sessile community developed on the panels was studied two and 15 months after their immersion at the water to determine the effects of materials and environmental conditions (sediments, waves, hydrodynamic conditions, temperature and salinity) on ecological succession and the possible implications at the conservation of historical shipwrecks. On the Fougueux, the environmental conditions more strongly influenced the biological succession than the material type, with pioneer colonisers dominating the communities in both sampling periods. On the Bucentaure, exposed to more stable environmental conditions, the sessile community showed differences between sampling periods and among materials at the end of the experiment. Under these more stable environmental conditions, the material type showed a higher influence on the sessile community. Species that produce calcareous concretions developed on metallic panels, but were absent on wood panels, where the shipworm Teredo navalis was more abundant. The relationship between environmental conditions, sessile organisms and material type can influence the conservation status of the archaeological sites.

  5. EXPERIMENTAL ANALYSIS OF THE EFFECTS OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS ON THE V-BELT SLIP

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mehmet UÇAR

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available In the performance of force-coupled V-belt pulley mechanisms, friction forces play quite important role. Surface friction coefficient affecting friction force changes as a function of the environmental conditions prevailing around the system. Because of this feature, efficiency of the mechanism depends on the environmental conditions in the working space. In this study, experiments have been conducted in various moisture and temperature conditions and at the condition presence of various material particles and dust such as chalk, cement, sand, synthetic fiber and flour. Thus, slipping of pulleys relative to each other as a function of environmental conditions have been determined. Slipping values have been shown graphically. It was seen that relative moisture of the air slightly affects total slippage and as relative moisture of the air was kept constant, slipping values increased exponentially with temperature. On the other hand, at the condition including various material particles and dust the slippage was affected by particles and dust depending on their feature and structure.

  6. The Conditions for Functional Mechanisms of Compensation and Reward for Environmental Services

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brent M. Swallow

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Mechanisms of compensation and reward for environmental services (CRES are becoming increasingly contemplated as means for managing human-environment interactions. Most of the functional mechanisms in the tropics have been developed within the last 15 years; many developing countries still have had little experience with functional mechanisms. We consider the conditions that foster the origin and implementation of functional mechanisms. Deductive and inductive approaches are combined. Eight hypotheses are derived from theories of institution and policy change. Five case studies, from Latin America, Africa, and Asia, are then reviewed according to a common framework. The results suggest the following to be important conditions for functional CRES mechanisms: (1 localized scarcity for particular environmental services, (2 influence from international environmental agreements and international organizations, (3 government policies and public attitudes favoring a mixture of regulatory and market-based instruments, and (4 security of individual and group property rights.

  7. Effect of environmental conditions on the flexural properties of wood I-beams and lumber

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gwo-Huang Chen; R.C. Tang; E.W. Price

    1989-01-01

    Flexural properties as affected by environmental conditions were evaluated for full-sized wood composite I-beams webbed with oriented strand board (OSB), randomly oriented flakeboard (RF) and 3-ply Structural I plywood (PLY). Solid-sawn southern pine 2 by 10's, ordinarily used in light-frame building construction, were also tested for comparative purposes....

  8. Java project on periodontal diseases: periodontal bone loss in relation to environmental and systemic conditions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Amaliya, A.; Laine, M.L.; Delanghe, J.R.; Loos, B.G.; van Wijk, A.J.; van der Velden, U.

    2015-01-01

    Objective To assess in a population deprived from regular dental care the relationship between alveolar bone loss (ABL) and environmental/systemic conditions. Material & Methods The study population consisted of subjects from the Purbasari tea estate on West Java, Indonesia. A full set of dental

  9. Response of the photosynthetic system to altered protein composition and changes in environmental conditions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tóth, T.

    2014-01-01

    The photosynthetic thylakoid membrane has a hierarchically ordered structure containing pigment-protein complexes that capture solar radiation and convert it into chemical energy. Its highly dynamic structure is capable to continuously respond to the altered environmental conditions, e.g., light

  10. Effects of environmental stress on forest crown condition in Europe. Part IV statistical analysis of relationships

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Klap, J.M.; Oude Voshaar, J.H.; Vries, de W.; Erisman, J.W.

    2000-01-01

    Site-specific estimates for various environmental stress factors were related with measured crown condition data at a systematic 16 x: 16 km(2) grid over Europe, according to previously stated hypotheses, using a multiple regression approach, including interactions, and lagged effects of stress

  11. The effect of environmental conditions on the seasonal dormancy pattern and germination of weed seeds

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bouwmeester, H.J.

    1990-01-01

    Weeds cause considerable losses in horticultural and agricultural crops. Weeds are still predominantly controlled with herbicides. To reduce the use of chemicals, a better understanding of the biology of weeds is required. In this thesis the effect of environmental conditions on dormancy

  12. Woodland pond salamander abundance in relation to forest management and environmental conditions in northern Wisconsin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deahn M. Donner; Christine A. Ribic; Albert J. Beck; Dale Higgins; Dan Eklund; Susan. Reinecke

    2015-01-01

    Woodland ponds are important landscape features that help sustain populations of amphibians that require this aquatic habitat for successful reproduction. Species abundance patterns often reflect site-specific differences in hydrology, physical characteristics, and surrounding vegetation. Large-scale processes such as changing land cover and environmental conditions...

  13. Greater bud outgrowth of Bromus inermis than Pascopyrum smithii under multiple environmental conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacqueline P. Ott; Jack L. Butler; Yuping Rong; Lan. Xu

    2017-01-01

    Tiller recruitment of perennial grasses in mixed-grass prairie primarily occurs from belowground buds. Environmental conditions, such as temperature, soil moisture and grazing can affect bud outgrowth of both invasive and native perennial grasses. Differential bud outgrowth responses of native and invasive species to climate change and grazing could alter...

  14. Association between Markers of Classroom Environmental Conditions and Teachers' Respiratory Health

    Science.gov (United States)

    Claudio, Luz; Rivera, Glory A.; Ramirez, Olivia F.

    2016-01-01

    Background: Studies have assessed health in schoolchildren. Less is known about the environmental and occupational health of teachers. Methods: A cross-sectional survey of teachers was conducted in 24 randomly selected public elementary schools. Questionnaire included sociodemographic information, healthcare, school conditions, and health…

  15. Mapping the Arabidopsis Metabolic Landscape by Untargeted Metabolomics at Different Environmental Conditions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wu, Si; Tohge, Takayuki; Cuadros-Inostroza, Álvaro; Tong, Hao; Tenenboim, Hezi; Kooke, Rik; Méret, Michaël; Keurentjes, Joost B.; Nikoloski, Zoran; Fernie, Alisdair Robert; Willmitzer, Lothar; Brotman, Yariv

    2018-01-01

    Metabolic genome-wide association studies (mGWAS), whereupon metabolite levels are regarded as traits, can help unravel the genetic basis of metabolic networks. A total of 309 Arabidopsis accessions were grown under two independent environmental conditions (control and stress) and subjected to

  16. Partitioning the Relative Importance of Phylogeny and Environmental Conditions on Phytoplankton Fatty Acids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galloway, Aaron W E; Winder, Monika

    2015-01-01

    Essential fatty acids (EFA), which are primarily generated by phytoplankton, limit growth and reproduction in diverse heterotrophs. The biochemical composition of phytoplankton is well-known to be governed both by phylogeny and environmental conditions. Nutrients, light, salinity, and temperature all affect both phytoplankton growth and fatty acid composition. However, the relative importance of taxonomy and environment on algal fatty acid content has yet to be comparatively quantified, thus inhibiting predictions of changes to phytoplankton food quality in response to global environmental change. We compiled 1145 published marine and freshwater phytoplankton fatty acid profiles, consisting of 208 species from six major taxonomic groups, cultured in a wide range of environmental conditions, and used a multivariate distance-based linear model to quantify the total variation explained by each variable. Our results show that taxonomic group accounts for 3-4 times more variation in phytoplankton fatty acids than the most important growth condition variables. The results underscore that environmental conditions clearly affect phytoplankton fatty acid profiles, but also show that conditions account for relatively low variation compared to phylogeny. This suggests that the underlying mechanism determining basal food quality in aquatic habitats is primarily phytoplankton community composition, and allows for prediction of environmental-scale EFA dynamics based on phytoplankton community data. We used the compiled dataset to calculate seasonal dynamics of long-chain EFA (LCEFA; ≥C20 ɷ-3 and ɷ-6 polyunsaturated fatty acid) concentrations and ɷ-3:ɷ-6 EFA ratios in Lake Washington using a multi-decadal phytoplankton community time series. These analyses quantify temporal dynamics of algal-derived LCEFA and food quality in a freshwater ecosystem that has undergone large community changes as a result of shifting resource management practices, highlighting diatoms

  17. Partitioning the Relative Importance of Phylogeny and Environmental Conditions on Phytoplankton Fatty Acids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galloway, Aaron W. E.; Winder, Monika

    2015-01-01

    Essential fatty acids (EFA), which are primarily generated by phytoplankton, limit growth and reproduction in diverse heterotrophs. The biochemical composition of phytoplankton is well-known to be governed both by phylogeny and environmental conditions. Nutrients, light, salinity, and temperature all affect both phytoplankton growth and fatty acid composition. However, the relative importance of taxonomy and environment on algal fatty acid content has yet to be comparatively quantified, thus inhibiting predictions of changes to phytoplankton food quality in response to global environmental change. We compiled 1145 published marine and freshwater phytoplankton fatty acid profiles, consisting of 208 species from six major taxonomic groups, cultured in a wide range of environmental conditions, and used a multivariate distance-based linear model to quantify the total variation explained by each variable. Our results show that taxonomic group accounts for 3-4 times more variation in phytoplankton fatty acids than the most important growth condition variables. The results underscore that environmental conditions clearly affect phytoplankton fatty acid profiles, but also show that conditions account for relatively low variation compared to phylogeny. This suggests that the underlying mechanism determining basal food quality in aquatic habitats is primarily phytoplankton community composition, and allows for prediction of environmental-scale EFA dynamics based on phytoplankton community data. We used the compiled dataset to calculate seasonal dynamics of long-chain EFA (LCEFA; ≥C20 ɷ-3 and ɷ-6 polyunsaturated fatty acid) concentrations and ɷ-3:ɷ-6 EFA ratios in Lake Washington using a multi-decadal phytoplankton community time series. These analyses quantify temporal dynamics of algal-derived LCEFA and food quality in a freshwater ecosystem that has undergone large community changes as a result of shifting resource management practices, highlighting diatoms

  18. Environmental conditions prerequisite for complete limb regeneration in the postmetamorphic adult land-phase salamander, Ambystoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, H E; Bailey, C F; Dalley, B K

    1983-07-01

    Historically, postmetamorphic adult land-phase salamanders have been shown to exhibit minimal to nonexistent limb regeneration. Hence, it has been generally accepted that these forms have lost the intrinsic capacity to regenerate a limb. Due to the experimental protocols used, an alternate explanation is also possible: that this intrinsic capacity cannot be expressed when the salamanders are maintained under adverse laboratory environmental conditions. Therefore, this study addresses two questions: 1) What are the optimal environmental conditions for long-term survival of adult land-phase salamanders; and 2) will complete limb regeneration occur in these salamanders if they are maintained under survival conditions. A mixed population of adult Ambystoma were tested under varying conditions of habitat, temperature, humidity, photoperiod, and food source. Complete limb regeneration was possible in 100% of four species of adult postmetamorphic land-phase Ambystoma salamanders given the proper environmental laboratory conditions of a peat moss and potting soil habitat with a controlled temperature of 25 degrees C +/- 5 degrees C, 70% or greater humidity, a 12/12 light/dark photoperiod, a diet including nightcrawlers released into their respective terraria, and an extended observation time of up to 370 days postamputation (dpa). Regeneration was completed during the following range periods for the adult salamanders: A. annulatum, 324 to 370 dpa; A. maculatum, 255 to 300 dpa; A. texanum, 215 to 250 dpa; and A. tigranum, 155 to 180 dpa.

  19. Jatropha curcasand Ricinus communisdisplay contrasting photosynthetic mechanisms in response to environmental conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Milton Costa Lima Neto

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Higher plants display different adaptive strategies in photosynthesis to cope with abiotic stress. In this study, photosynthetic mechanisms and water relationships displayed byJatropha curcasL. (physic nuts andRicinus communisL. (castor bean, in response to variations in environmental conditions, were assessed.R. communis showed higher CO2 assimilation, stomatal and mesophyll conductance thanJ. curcas as light intensity and intercellular CO2 pressure increased. On the other hand,R. communis was less effective in stomatal control in response to adverse environmental factors such as high temperature, water deficit and vapor pressure deficit, indicating lower water use efficiency. Conversely,J. curcas exhibited higher photosynthetic efficiency (gas exchange and photochemistry and water use efficiency under these adverse environmental conditions.R. communisdisplayed higher potential photosynthesis, but exhibited a lowerin vivo Rubisco carboxylation rate (Vcmax and maximum electron transport rate (Jmax. During the course of a typical day, in a semiarid environment, with high irradiation, high temperature and high vapor pressure deficit, but exposed to well-watered conditions, the two studied species presented similar photosynthesis. Losing potential photosynthesis, but maintaining favorable water status and increasing non-photochemical quenching to avoid photoinhibition, are important acclimation mechanisms developed byJ. curcas to cope with dry and hot conditions. We suggest thatJ. curcas is more tolerant to hot and dry environments thanR. communis but the latter species displays higher photosynthetic efficiency under well-watered and non-stressful conditions.

  20. Performance Comparison of Widely-Used Maximum Power Point Tracker Algorithms under Real Environmental Conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    DURUSU, A.

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Maximum power point trackers (MPPTs play an essential role in extracting power from photovoltaic (PV panels as they make the solar panels to operate at the maximum power point (MPP whatever the changes of environmental conditions are. For this reason, they take an important place in the increase of PV system efficiency. MPPTs are driven by MPPT algorithms and a number of MPPT algorithms are proposed in the literature. The comparison of the MPPT algorithms in literature are made by a sun simulator based test system under laboratory conditions for short durations. However, in this study, the performances of four most commonly used MPPT algorithms are compared under real environmental conditions for longer periods. A dual identical experimental setup is designed to make a comparison between two the considered MPPT algorithms as synchronized. As a result of this study, the ranking among these algorithms are presented and the results show that Incremental Conductance (IC algorithm gives the best performance.

  1. A decision-making support system to select forages according to environmental conditions in Colombia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Blanca Aurora Arce Barboza

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Low food supply is a major problem affecting a large percentage of the livestock population in Colombia and is largely associated to inappropriate choice of forage species; and thus not well adapted to the environmental conditions of a specific region. To mitigate this problem, without incurring increasing costs associated to changing environmental conditions, it is possible to match the adaptive capacity of species to the environment in which they grow. A decision support system was developed to select suitable forage species for a given environment. The system is based on the use of existing information about requirements of the species rather than specific experimentation. From the information gathered, a database was generated and implemented on ASP.NET in C # and SQL Server database. This system allows users to search and select pastures and forage species for specific soil and climatic conditions of a particular farm or region, through a user-friendly web platform.

  2. Tracking the Movement of a Single Prokaryotic Cell in Extreme Environmental Conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishiyama, Masayoshi; Arai, Yoshiyuki

    2017-01-01

    Many bacterial species move toward favorable habitats. The flagellum is one of the most important machines required for the motility in solution and is conserved across a wide range of bacteria. The motility machinery is thought to function efficiently with a similar mechanism in a variety of environmental conditions, as many cells with similar machineries have been isolated from harsh environments. To understand the common mechanism and its diversity, microscopic examination of bacterial movements is a crucial step. Here, we describe a method to characterize the swimming motility of cells in extreme environmental conditions. This microscopy system enables acquisition of high-resolution images under high-pressure conditions. The temperature and oxygen concentration can also be manipulated. In addition, we also describe a method to track the movement of swimming cells using an ImageJ plugin. This enables characterization of the swimming motility of the selected cells.

  3. Medieval Iceland, Greenland, and the New Human Condition: A case study in integrated environmental humanities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hartman, Steven; Ogilvie, A. E. J.; Ingimundarson, Jón Haukur; Dugmore, A. J.; Hambrecht, George; McGovern, T. H.

    2017-09-01

    This paper contributes to recent studies exploring the longue durée of human impacts on island landscapes, the impacts of climate and other environmental changes on human communities, and the interaction of human societies and their environments at different spatial and temporal scales. In particular, the paper addresses Iceland during the medieval period (with a secondary, comparative focus on Norse Greenland) and discusses episodes where environmental and climatic changes have appeared to cross key thresholds for agricultural productivity. The paper draws upon international, interdisciplinary research in the North Atlantic region led by the North Atlantic Biocultural Organization (NABO) and the Nordic Network for Interdisciplinary Environmental Studies (NIES) in the Circumpolar Networks program of the Integrated History and Future of People on Earth (IHOPE). By interlinking analyses of historically grounded literature with archaeological studies and environmental science, valuable new perspectives can emerge on how these past societies may have understood and coped with such impacts. As climate and other environmental changes do not operate in isolation, vulnerabilities created by socioeconomic factors also beg consideration. The paper illustrates the benefits of an integrated environmental-studies approach that draws on data, methodologies and analytical tools of environmental humanities, social sciences, and geosciences to better understand long-term human ecodynamics and changing human-landscape-environment interactions through time. One key goal is to apply previously unused data and concerted expertise to illuminate human responses to past changes; a secondary aim is to consider how lessons derived from these cases may be applicable to environmental threats and socioecological risks in the future, especially as understood in light of the New Human Condition, the concept transposed from Hannah Arendt's influential framing of the human condition that is

  4. Temporal Change of Environmental Contamination Conditions in Five Years after the Fukushima Accident

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saito, Kimiaki

    2017-09-01

    The temporal change of environmental contamination conditions after the Fukushima accident have been clarified based on large-scale environmental monitoring data repeatedly obtained in the 80 km zone. The decreasing tendency of air dose rates was confirmed to obviously depend on land uses. In human-related diverse environments the air dose rates have decreased much faster than the physical decay of radiocesium. The horizontal movement of radiocesium in undisturbed fields were found to be generally quite small, though it has gradually penetrated into the deeper parts of the ground.

  5. Temporal Change of Environmental Contamination Conditions in Five Years after the Fukushima Accident

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saito Kimiaki

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The temporal change of environmental contamination conditions after the Fukushima accident have been clarified based on large-scale environmental monitoring data repeatedly obtained in the 80 km zone. The decreasing tendency of air dose rates was confirmed to obviously depend on land uses. In human-related diverse environments the air dose rates have decreased much faster than the physical decay of radiocesium. The horizontal movement of radiocesium in undisturbed fields were found to be generally quite small, though it has gradually penetrated into the deeper parts of the ground.

  6. Metabolic and functional phenotypic profiling of Drosophila melanogaster reveals reduced sex differentiation under stressful environmental conditions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ørsted, Michael; Malmendal, Anders; Muñoz, Joaquin

    2017-01-01

    Strong sexual dimorphism is commonly observed across species and e.g. trade-offs between reproduction and maintenance are thought to explain this dimorphism. Here we test how the metabolic and functional phenotypic responses to varying types of environmental stress differ in male and female...... rearing regimes were investigated using NMR metabolomics and assessed for body mass and viability. Our results showed that environmental stress leads to reduced sexual dimorphism in both metabolic composition and body mass compared to the level of dimorphism observed at benign conditions. This reduced...

  7. Incorporating temporal heterogeneity in environmental conditions into a somatic growth model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dzul, Maria C.; Yackulic, Charles B.; Korman, Josh; Yard, Michael D.; Muehlbauer, Jeffrey D.

    2017-01-01

    Evaluating environmental effects on fish growth can be challenging because environmental conditions may vary at relatively fine temporal scales compared to sampling occasions. Here we develop a Bayesian state-space growth model to evaluate effects of monthly environmental data on growth of fish that are observed less frequently (e.g., from mark-recapture data where time between captures can range from months to years). We assess effects of temperature, turbidity duration, food availability, flow variability, and trout abundance on subadult humpback chub (Gila cypha) growth in two rivers, the Colorado River (CR) and the Little Colorado River (LCR), and we use out-of-sample prediction to rank competing models. Environmental covariates explained a high proportion of the variation in growth in both rivers; however, the best growth models were river-specific and included either positive temperature and turbidity duration effects (CR) or positive temperature and food availability effects (LCR). Our approach to analyzing environmental controls on growth should be applicable in other systems where environmental data vary over relatively short time scales compared to animal observations.

  8. Analysis Of Waste Production Management And Environmental Conditions On Coating Process Performancebefore And After The Implementation Of Environmental Management System (EMS)

    OpenAIRE

    Lestari, Yetty Dwi; Prisilia, Binar

    2012-01-01

    The phenomenon of proactive environmental management began in the 1990's where manufacturing industries were aware  the importance of corporate sustainability through sustainable environmental management. Various strategies  can be done in a proactive environmental management. This study emphasized the development of conditions environmental performance companies  in minimizing waste, especially in production process that contains a lot of waste. The company has trying to implement a standard...

  9. Oil Recovery from Water under Environmentally Relevant Conditions Using Magnetic Nanoparticles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mirshahghassemi, Seyyedali; Lead, Jamie R

    2015-10-06

    Large oil spills and oily wastewater discharges from ships and industrial activities can have serious impacts on the environment with potentially major economic impacts. Current oil remediation techniques are inefficient and may have deleterious environmental consequences. However, nanotechnology offers a new route to potentially remediate oil pollution. In this study, a cheap and facile hydrothermal method was developed to synthesize polyvinylpyrrolidone-coated magnetite nanoparticles to separate a reference MC252 oil from oil-water mixture under environmentally relevant conditions. Fluorescence and Proton nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy results showed near 100% oil removal from oil-water mixture in the ultrapure water under optimum condition. Based on gas chromatography-mass spectrometry data, approximately 100% of lower molecular mass alkanes (C9-C21) were removed within 10 min of magnetic separation and by increasing the separation time to 40 min, greater than 67% of C22-25 alkanes were removed. Moreover, nanoparticles removed near 100% oil from synthetic seawater solutions in the presence and absence of fulvic acid showing excellent oil removal capacity of the nanoparticles under different conditions. Results show that these nanoparticles can be utilized to remove oil over a short time with a high removal efficiency under environmentally relevant conditions.

  10. Thermal comfort index and infrared temperatures for lambs subjected to different environmental conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tiago do Prado Paim

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available There is an abundance of thermal indices with different input parameters and applicabilities. Infrared thermography is a promising technique for evaluating the response of animals to the environment and differentiating between genetic groups. Thus, the aim of this study was to evaluate superficial body temperatures of lambs from three genetic groups under different environmental conditions, correlating these with thermal comfort indices. Forty lambs (18 males and 22 females from three genetic groups (Santa Inês, Ile de France × Santa Inês and Dorper × Santa Inês were exposed to three climatic conditions: open air, housed and artificial heating. Infrared thermal images were taken weekly at 6h, 12h and 21h at the neck, front flank, rear flank, rump, nose, skull, trunk and eye. Four thermal comfort indices were calculated using environmental measurements including black globe temperature, air humidity and wind speed. Artificial warming, provided by infrared lamps and wind protection, conserved and increased the superficial body temperature of the lambs, thus providing lower daily thermal ranges. Artificial warming did not influence daily weight gain or mortality. Skin temperatures increased along with increases in climatic indices. Again, infrared thermography is a promising technique for evaluating thermal stress conditions and differentiating environments. However, the use of thermal imaging for understanding animal responses to environmental conditions requires further study.

  11. Social effects on foraging behavior and success depend on local environmental conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marshall, Harry H; Carter, Alecia J; Ashford, Alexandra; Rowcliffe, J Marcus; Cowlishaw, Guy

    2015-01-01

    In social groups, individuals' dominance rank, social bonds, and kinship with other group members have been shown to influence their foraging behavior. However, there is growing evidence that the particular effects of these social traits may also depend on local environmental conditions. We investigated this by comparing the foraging behavior of wild chacma baboons, Papio ursinus, under natural conditions and in a field experiment where food was spatially clumped. Data were collected from 55 animals across two troops over a 5-month period, including over 900 agonistic foraging interactions and over 600 food patch visits in each condition. In both conditions, low-ranked individuals received more agonism, but this only translated into reduced foraging performances for low-ranked individuals in the high-competition experimental conditions. Our results suggest one possible reason for this pattern may be low-ranked individuals strategically investing social effort to negotiate foraging tolerance, but the rank-offsetting effect of this investment being overwhelmed in the higher-competition experimental environment. Our results also suggest that individuals may use imbalances in their social bonds to negotiate tolerance from others under a wider range of environmental conditions, but utilize the overall strength of their social bonds in more extreme environments where feeding competition is more intense. These findings highlight that behavioral tactics such as the strategic investment of social effort may allow foragers to mitigate the costs of low rank, but that the effectiveness of these tactics is likely to be limited in certain environments. PMID:25691973

  12. Visually suboptimal bananas: How ripeness affects consumer expectation and perception.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Symmank, Claudia; Zahn, Susann; Rohm, Harald

    2017-10-07

    One reason for the significant amount of food that is wasted in developed countries is that consumers often expect visually suboptimal food as being less palatable. Using bananas as example, the objective of this study was to determine how appearance affects consumer overall liking, the rating of sensory attributes, purchase intention, and the intended use of bananas. The ripeness degree (RD) of the samples was adjusted to RD 5 (control) and RD 7 (more ripened, visually suboptimal). After preliminary experiments, a total of 233 participants were asked to judge their satisfaction with the intensity of sensory attributes that referred to flavor, taste, and texture using just-about-right scales. Subjects who received peeled samples were asked after tasting, whereas subjects who received unpeeled bananas judged expectation and, after peeling and tasting, perception. Expected overall liking and purchase intention were significantly lower for RD 7 bananas. Purchase intention was still significantly different between RD 5 and RD 7 after tasting, whereas no difference in overall liking was observed. Significant differences between RD 5 and RD 7 were observed when asking participants for their intended use of the bananas. Concerning the sensory attributes, penalty analysis revealed that only the firmness of the RD 7 bananas was still not just-about-right after tasting. The importance that consumers attribute to the shelf-life of food had a pronounced impact on purchase intention of bananas with different ripeness degree. In the case of suboptimal bananas, the results demonstrate a positive relationship between the sensory perception and overall liking and purchase intention. Convincing consumers that visually suboptimal food is still tasty is of high relevance for recommending different ways of communication. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Status report on assessment of environmentally assisted fatigue for LWR extended service conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mohanty, S. [Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States); Soppet, W. K. [Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States); Majumdar, S. [Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States); Natesan, K. [Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States)

    2014-07-09

    This report provides an update on an earlier assessment of environmentally assisted fatigue for light water reactor (LWR) materials under extended service conditions. This report is a deliverable in September 2013, under the work package for environmentally assisted fatigue in the Light Water Reactor Sustainability (LWRS) program. The overall objective of this LWRS project is to assess the degradation by environmentally assisted cracking/fatigue of LWR materials, such as various alloy base metals and their welds used in reactor coolant system piping. This effort is to support the U.S. Department of Energy LWRS program for developing tools to predict the aging/failure mechanism and to correspondingly predict the remaining life of LWR components for anticipated 60-80 year operation.

  14. The spatial module as environmental conditioning element: the Spanish pavilion by Corrales and Molezun

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Suárez

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available In the 50s a review of Modern Movement, which assimilates modular serialization and a connection with the environmental context, although with remote premises of the contemporary paradigms of sustainability arise. In this context, within national stage, stands out the Spanish pavilion at the Brussels International Exhibition in 1958 by Corrales and Molezún. This work seeks a quantitatively reveal of the environmental performance of the pavilion in its two locations and settings, in Brussels and Madrid, through simulation and analysis of energy and lighting models which reproduces the characteristic of the pavilion with the purpose of contributing to give a new critical point of view, valuing the module efficiency to adapt to different environmental conditions. The completed analysis reveals the influence of the climate, compactness and orientation, as in the difficulties associated with thermal comfort and natural light when glazing percentage are important and there are high solar radiation settings.

  15. Investigating the genetic architecture of conditional strategies using the environmental threshold model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buzatto, Bruno A; Buoro, Mathieu; Hazel, Wade N; Tomkins, Joseph L

    2015-12-22

    The threshold expression of dichotomous phenotypes that are environmentally cued or induced comprise the vast majority of phenotypic dimorphisms in colour, morphology, behaviour and life history. Modelled as conditional strategies under the framework of evolutionary game theory, the quantitative genetic basis of these traits is a challenge to estimate. The challenge exists firstly because the phenotypic expression of the trait is dichotomous and secondly because the apparent environmental cue is separate from the biological signal pathway that induces the switch between phenotypes. It is the cryptic variation underlying the translation of cue to phenotype that we address here. With a 'half-sib common environment' and a 'family-level split environment' experiment, we examine the environmental and genetic influences that underlie male dimorphism in the earwig Forficula auricularia. From the conceptual framework of the latent environmental threshold (LET) model, we use pedigree information to dissect the genetic architecture of the threshold expression of forceps length. We investigate for the first time the strength of the correlation between observable and cryptic 'proximate' cues. Furthermore, in support of the environmental threshold model, we found no evidence for a genetic correlation between cue and the threshold between phenotypes. Our results show strong correlations between observable and proximate cues and less genetic variation for thresholds than previous studies have suggested. We discuss the importance of generating better estimates of the genetic variation for thresholds when investigating the genetic architecture and heritability of threshold traits. By investigating genetic architecture by means of the LET model, our study supports several key evolutionary ideas related to conditional strategies and improves our understanding of environmentally cued decisions. © 2015 The Author(s).

  16. Microbial forensics: predicting phenotypic characteristics and environmental conditions from large-scale gene expression profiles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Minseung Kim

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available A tantalizing question in cellular physiology is whether the cellular state and environmental conditions can be inferred by the expression signature of an organism. To investigate this relationship, we created an extensive normalized gene expression compendium for the bacterium Escherichia coli that was further enriched with meta-information through an iterative learning procedure. We then constructed an ensemble method to predict environmental and cellular state, including strain, growth phase, medium, oxygen level, antibiotic and carbon source presence. Results show that gene expression is an excellent predictor of environmental structure, with multi-class ensemble models achieving balanced accuracy between 70.0% (±3.5% to 98.3% (±2.3% for the various characteristics. Interestingly, this performance can be significantly boosted when environmental and strain characteristics are simultaneously considered, as a composite classifier that captures the inter-dependencies of three characteristics (medium, phase and strain achieved 10.6% (±1.0% higher performance than any individual models. Contrary to expectations, only 59% of the top informative genes were also identified as differentially expressed under the respective conditions. Functional analysis of the respective genetic signatures implicates a wide spectrum of Gene Ontology terms and KEGG pathways with condition-specific information content, including iron transport, transferases, and enterobactin synthesis. Further experimental phenotypic-to-genotypic mapping that we conducted for knock-out mutants argues for the information content of top-ranked genes. This work demonstrates the degree at which genome-scale transcriptional information can be predictive of latent, heterogeneous and seemingly disparate phenotypic and environmental characteristics, with far-reaching applications.

  17. Local environmental context conditions the impact of Russian olive in a heterogeneous riparian ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tuttle, Graham M.; Katz, Gabrielle L.; Friedman, Jonathan M.; Norton, Andrew P.

    2016-01-01

    Local abiotic and biotic conditions can alter the strength of exotic species impacts. To better understand the effects of exotic species on invaded ecosystems and to prioritize management efforts, it is important that exotic species impacts are put in local environmental context. We studied how differences in plant community composition, photosynthetically active radiation (PAR), and available soil N associated with Russian olive presence are conditioned by local environmental variation within a western U.S. riparian ecosystem. In four sites along the South Fork of the Republican River in Colorado, we established 200 pairs of plots (underneath and apart from Russian olive) to measure the effects of invasion across the ecosystem. We used a series of a priori mixed models to identify environmental variables that altered the effects of Russian olive. For all response variables, models that included the interaction of environmental characteristics, such as presence/absence of an existing cottonwood canopy, with the presence/absence of Russian olive canopy were stronger candidate models than those that just included Russian olive canopy presence as a factor. Compared with reference plots outside of Russian olive canopy, plots underneath Russian olive had higher relative exotic cover (exotic/total cover), lower perennial C4 grass cover, and higher perennial forb cover. These effects were reduced, however, in the presence of a cottonwood canopy. As expected, Russian olive was associated with reduced PAR and increased N, but these effects were reduced under cottonwood canopy. Our results demonstrate that local abiotic and biotic environmental factors condition the effects of Russian olive within a heterogeneous riparian ecosystem and suggest that management efforts should be focused in open areas where Russian olive impacts are strongest.

  18. Immune activity, body condition and human-associated environmental impacts in a wild marine mammal.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patrick M Brock

    Full Text Available Within individuals, immunity may compete with other life history traits for resources, such as energy and protein, and the damage caused by immunopathology can sometimes outweigh the protective benefits that immune responses confer. However, our understanding of the costs of immunity in the wild and how they relate to the myriad energetic demands on free-ranging organisms is limited. The endangered Galapagos sea lion (Zalophus wollebaeki is threatened simultaneously by disease from domestic animals and rapid changes in food availability driven by unpredictable environmental variation. We made use of this unique ecology to investigate the relationship between changes in immune activity and changes in body condition. We found that during the first three months of life, changes in antibody concentration were negatively correlated with changes in mass per unit length, skinfold thickness and serum albumin concentration, but only in a sea lion colony exposed to anthropogenic environmental impacts. It has previously been shown that changes in antibody concentration during early Galapagos sea lion development were higher in a colony exposed to anthropogenic environmental impacts than in a control colony. This study allows for the possibility that these relatively large changes in antibody concentration are associated with negative impacts on fitness through an effect on body condition. Our findings suggest that energy availability and the degree of plasticity in immune investment may influence disease risk in natural populations synergistically, through a trade-off between investment in immunity and resistance to starvation. The relative benefits of such investments may change quickly and unpredictably, which allows for the possibility that individuals fine-tune their investment strategies in response to changes in environmental conditions. In addition, our results suggest that anthropogenic environmental impacts may impose subtle energetic costs on

  19. Environmental and mental conditions predicting the experience of involuntary musical imagery: An experience sampling method study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Floridou, Georgia A; Müllensiefen, Daniel

    2015-05-01

    An experience sampling method (ESM) study on 40 volunteers was conducted to explore the environmental factors and psychological conditions related to involuntary musical imagery (INMI) in everyday life. Participants reported 6 times per day for one week on their INMI experiences, relevant contextual information and associated environmental conditions. The resulting data was modeled with Bayesian networks and led to insights into the interplay of factors related to INMI experiences. The activity that a person is engaged was found to play an important role in the experience of mind wandering, which in turn enables the experience of INMI. INMI occurrence is independent of the time of the day while the INMI trigger affects the subjective evaluation of the INMI experience. The results are compared to findings from earlier studies based on retrospective surveys and questionnaires and highlight the advantage of ESM techniques in research on spontaneous experiences like INMI. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Environmental conditions and intraspecific interference: unexpected effects of turbidity on pike (Esox lucius) foraging

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nilsson, P.A.; Jacobsen, Lene; Berg, Søren

    2009-01-01

    Interference among predators decreases per capita foraging rates and has implications for both community dynamics and top-down trophic processes. Interference originates from behavioural interactions among foragers, and these behaviours could be affected by environmental conditions. In experiment...... on community dynamics and its reduction of predation impact on top-down trophic cascades should consider potential unexpected effects of environmental conditions....... on pike foraging alone or among conspecifics in different levels of water turbidity, we expected high turbidity to decrease the perceived risk of intraspecific interactions among pike, and thereby decrease the strength of interference, as turbidity would decrease the visual contact between individuals......, indicating no effect of interference. As high turbidity enhances prey consumption for pike individuals foraging alone, but does not have this effect for pike in groups, high turbidity induces the relative interference effect. We suggest that future evaluations of the stabilizing effects of interference...

  1. Yield and quality attributes of faba bean inbred lines grown under marginal environmental conditions of Sudan

    OpenAIRE

    Gasim, Seif; Hamad, Solafa A.A.; Abdelmula, Awadalla; Mohamed Ahmed, Isam A.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Faba beans (Vicia faba L.) represent an essential source of food protein for many people in Sudan, especially those who cannot afford to buy animal meat. The demand for faba bean seeds is greatly increased in recent years, and consequently its production area was extended southward where the climate is marginally suitable. Therefore, this study was aimed to evaluate seed yield and nutritional quality of five faba bean inbred lines grown under marginal environmental conditions of Suda...

  2. Design of a leaching test framework for coal fly ash accounting for environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zandi, Mohammad; Russell, Nigel V

    2007-08-01

    Fly ash from coal combustion contains trace elements which, on disposal or utilisation, may leach out, and therefore be a potential environmental hazard. Environmental conditions have a great impact on the mobility of fly ash constituents as well as the physical and chemical properties of the fly ash. Existing standard leaching methods have been shown to be inadequate by not representing possible disposal or utilisation scenarios. These tests are often criticised on the grounds that the results estimated are not reliable as they are not able to be extrapolated to the application scenario. In order to simulate leaching behaviour of fly ash in different environmental conditions and to reduce deviation between measurements in the fields and the laboratories, it is vital to study sensitivity of the fly ash constituents of interest to major factors controlling leachability. pH, liquid-to-solid ratio, leaching time, leachant type and redox potential are parameters affecting stability of elements in the fly ash. Sensitivity of trace elements to pH and liquid to solid ratio (as two major overriding factors) has been examined. Elements have been classified on the basis of their leaching behaviour under different conditions. Results from this study have been used to identify leaching mechanisms. Also the fly ash has been examined under different standard batch leaching tests in order to evaluate and to compare these tests. A Leaching Test Framework has been devised for assessing the stability of trace elements from fly ashes in different environments. This Framework assists in designing more realistic batch leaching tests appropriate to field conditions and can support the development of regulations and protocols for the management and disposal of coal combustion by-products or other solid wastes of environmental concern.

  3. Performance Comparison of Widely-Used Maximum Power Point Tracker Algorithms under Real Environmental Conditions

    OpenAIRE

    DURUSU, A.; NAKIR, I.; AJDER, A.; Ayaz, R.; Akca, H.; Tanrioven, M.

    2014-01-01

    Maximum power point trackers (MPPTs) play an essential role in extracting power from photovoltaic (PV) panels as they make the solar panels to operate at the maximum power point (MPP) whatever the changes of environmental conditions are. For this reason, they take an important place in the increase of PV system efficiency. MPPTs are driven by MPPT algorithms and a number of MPPT algorithms are proposed in the literature. The comparison of the MPPT algorithms in literature are ...

  4. Optimization of Environmental Conditions to Maximize Carbon Dioxide Sequestration Through Algal Growth

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-03-01

    nature that C. vulgaris was investigated in this study. Lipids Production As discussed before, the chemical composition of the algae is not a constant...on CO2 fixation and biomass production by microalgae in photobioreactors.” Chemical Engineering and Processing, 48:306- 310 (January, 2009...that the alga is very robust and tolerant of a wide range of environmental conditions, including nutrient composition and water type. CO2

  5. Envilab: Measuring phytoplankton in-vivo absorption and scattering properties under tunable environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Göritz, Anna; von Hoesslin, Stefan; Hundhausen, Felix; Gege, Peter

    2017-10-16

    Optical remote sensing of phytoplankton draws on distinctive spectral features which can vary with both species and environmental conditions. Here, we present a set-up (Envilab) for growing phytoplankton under well-defined light, temperature and nutrient conditions. The custom-built light source enables creation of light with spectral composition similar to natural aquatic environments. Spectral tuning allows for light quality studies. Attenuation is monitored with a spectrometer in transmission mode. In combination with automated spectrophotometer and fluorimeter measurements, absorption and excitation-emission-fluorescence spectra are recorded. The set-up opens the door for systematic studies on phytoplankton optical properties and physiology.

  6. Environmental impacts of barley cultivation under current and future climatic conditions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dijkman, Teunis Johannes; Birkved, Morten; Saxe, Henrik

    2017-01-01

    The purpose of this work is to compare the environmental impacts of spring barley cultivation in Denmark under current (year 2010) and future (year 2050) climatic conditions. Therefore, a Life Cycle Assessment was carried out for the production of 1 kg of spring barley in Denmark, at farm gate....... Both under 2010 and 2050 climatic conditions, four subscenarios were modelled, based on a combination of two soil types and two climates. Included in the assessment were seed production, soil preparation, fertilization, pesticide application, and harvest. When processes in the life cycle resulted in co...

  7. Environmental Transmission Electron Microscopy Study of Diesel Carbon Soot Combustion under Simulated Catalytic-Reaction Conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mori, Kohsuke; Watanabe, Keitaro; Sato, Takeshi; Yamashita, Hiromi

    2015-05-18

    Environmental transmission electron microscopy (ETEM) is used to monitor the catalytic combustion of diesel carbon soot upon exposure to molecular oxygen at elevated temperatures by using a gas-injection specimen heating holder. The reaction conditions simulated in the ETEM experiments reconstruct real conditions effectively. This study demonstrated for the first time that soot combustion occurs at the soot-catalyst interface for both Ag/CeO2 and Cu/BaO/La2 O3 catalysts. © 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  8. Modelling the effects of environmental conditions on the acoustic occurrence and behaviour of Antarctic blue whales.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shabangu, Fannie W; Yemane, Dawit; Stafford, Kathleen M; Ensor, Paul; Findlay, Ken P

    2017-01-01

    Harvested to perilously low numbers by commercial whaling during the past century, the large scale response of Antarctic blue whales Balaenoptera musculus intermedia to environmental variability is poorly understood. This study uses acoustic data collected from 586 sonobuoys deployed in the austral summers of 1997 through 2009, south of 38°S, coupled with visual observations of blue whales during the IWC SOWER line-transect surveys. The characteristic Z-call and D-call of Antarctic blue whales were detected using an automated detection template and visual verification method. Using a random forest model, we showed the environmental preferences pattern, spatial occurrence and acoustic behaviour of Antarctic blue whales. Distance to the southern boundary of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current (SBACC), latitude and distance from the nearest Antarctic shores were the main geographic predictors of blue whale call occurrence. Satellite-derived sea surface height, sea surface temperature, and productivity (chlorophyll-a) were the most important environmental predictors of blue whale call occurrence. Call rates of D-calls were strongly predicted by the location of the SBACC, latitude and visually detected number of whales in an area while call rates of Z-call were predicted by the SBACC, latitude and longitude. Satellite-derived sea surface height, wind stress, wind direction, water depth, sea surface temperatures, chlorophyll-a and wind speed were important environmental predictors of blue whale call rates in the Southern Ocean. Blue whale call occurrence and call rates varied significantly in response to inter-annual and long term variability of those environmental predictors. Our results identify the response of Antarctic blue whales to inter-annual variability in environmental conditions and highlighted potential suitable habitats for this population. Such emerging knowledge about the acoustic behaviour, environmental and habitat preferences of Antarctic blue whales is

  9. Modelling the effects of environmental conditions on the acoustic occurrence and behaviour of Antarctic blue whales.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fannie W Shabangu

    Full Text Available Harvested to perilously low numbers by commercial whaling during the past century, the large scale response of Antarctic blue whales Balaenoptera musculus intermedia to environmental variability is poorly understood. This study uses acoustic data collected from 586 sonobuoys deployed in the austral summers of 1997 through 2009, south of 38°S, coupled with visual observations of blue whales during the IWC SOWER line-transect surveys. The characteristic Z-call and D-call of Antarctic blue whales were detected using an automated detection template and visual verification method. Using a random forest model, we showed the environmental preferences pattern, spatial occurrence and acoustic behaviour of Antarctic blue whales. Distance to the southern boundary of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current (SBACC, latitude and distance from the nearest Antarctic shores were the main geographic predictors of blue whale call occurrence. Satellite-derived sea surface height, sea surface temperature, and productivity (chlorophyll-a were the most important environmental predictors of blue whale call occurrence. Call rates of D-calls were strongly predicted by the location of the SBACC, latitude and visually detected number of whales in an area while call rates of Z-call were predicted by the SBACC, latitude and longitude. Satellite-derived sea surface height, wind stress, wind direction, water depth, sea surface temperatures, chlorophyll-a and wind speed were important environmental predictors of blue whale call rates in the Southern Ocean. Blue whale call occurrence and call rates varied significantly in response to inter-annual and long term variability of those environmental predictors. Our results identify the response of Antarctic blue whales to inter-annual variability in environmental conditions and highlighted potential suitable habitats for this population. Such emerging knowledge about the acoustic behaviour, environmental and habitat preferences of

  10. Plasma cortisol and faecal cortisol metabolites concentrations in stereotypic and non-stereotypic horses: do stereotypic horses cope better with poor environmental conditions?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fureix Carole

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Stereotypic behaviours, i.e. repetitive behaviours induced by frustration, repeated attempts to cope and/or brain dysfunction, are intriguing as they occur in a variety of domestic and captive species without any clear adaptive function. Among the different hypotheses, the coping hypothesis predicts that stereotypic behaviours provide a way for animals in unfavourable environmental conditions to adjust. As such, they are expected to have a lower physiological stress level (glucocorticoids than non-stereotypic animals. Attempts to link stereotypic behaviours with glucocorticoids however have yielded contradictory results. Here we investigated correlates of oral and motor stereotypic behaviours and glucocorticoid levels in two large samples of domestic horses (NStudy1 = 55, NStudy2 = 58, kept in sub-optimal conditions (e.g. confinement, social isolation, and already known to experience poor welfare states. Each horse was observed in its box using focal sampling (study 1 and instantaneous scan sampling (study 2. Plasma samples (collected in study 1 but also non-invasive faecal samples (collected in both studies were retrieved in order to assess cortisol levels. Results Results showed that 1 plasma cortisol and faecal cortisol metabolites concentrations did not differ between horses displaying stereotypic behaviours and non-stereotypic horses and 2 both oral and motor stereotypic behaviour levels did not predict plasma cortisol or faecal cortisol metabolites concentrations. Conclusions Cortisol measures, collected in two large samples of horses using both plasma sampling as well as faecal sampling (the latter method minimizing bias due to a non-invasive sampling procedure, therefore do not indicate that stereotypic horses cope better, at least in terms of adrenocortical activity.

  11. Dietary CDP-choline supplementation prevents memory impairment caused by impoverished environmental conditions in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teather, Lisa A; Wurtman, Richard J

    2005-01-01

    We previously showed that dietary cytidine (5')-diphosphocholine (CDP-choline) supplementation could protect against the development of memory deficits in aging rats. In the present study, younger rats exposed to impoverished environmental conditions and manifesting hippocampal-dependent memory impairments similar to those observed in the aging rodents were given CDP-choline, and its effects on this cognitive deficit were assessed. Male Sprague-Dawley rats reared for 3 mo in impoverished (IC) or enriched environmental (EC) conditions concurrently received either a control diet or a diet supplemented with CDP-choline (approximately 500 mg/kg/d). After 3 mo, rats were trained to perform spatial and cued versions of the Morris water maze, and their rates of acquisition and retention were compared. Impoverished rats exhibited a selective deficit in hippocampal-dependent spatial memory which could be ameliorated by feeding them CDP-choline. The CDP-choline had no memory-enhancing effect in enriched rats, nor did it prevent the memory impairment of impoverished rats if the animals consumed it for the initial or final months instead of for the entire 3-mo period. These findings indicate that long-term dietary CDP-choline supplementation can ameliorate the hippocampal-dependent memory impairment caused by impoverished environmental conditions in rats, and suggest that its actions result, in part, from a long-term effect such as enhanced membrane phosphatide synthesis, an effect shown to require long-term dietary supplementation with CDP-choline.

  12. The seed physiological potential of hybrid corn treated with insecticides and store in two environmental conditions

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    Rosane Fátima Baldiga Tonin

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Seed treatment is a widely disseminated practice in Brazilian cultural areas, which linked to other cultural practices, has contributed to the increase in productivity, cost reduction, final product improvement, environmental damage reduction as well as good seed protection in the field level and storage. The work had the objective to check the insecticide effect on the germination and vigor of the hybrid maize seeds, stored in two environmental conditions. The seeds were treated with three insecticides, identified as: Insecticide one (Thiametoxan; Insecticide two (Neonicotinoide and Insecticide three [Neonicotinoide + (Imidaclopride+thiodicarbe]. After being treated, the seeds were stored for a period of 270 days, in two different places, one with (10ºC temperature and relative humidity (60% and another under normal condition of storage. During this period evaluations were accomplished every 45 days, through germination and vigor tests. In addition to germination and cooling tests, sanitation analysis, seedling emergency and seed inoculation were carried out. After that the seeds were stored for a period of 30 days in environmental places with and without control of air condition. The results obtained allow to conclude that the maintenance of seed quality of hybrid maize, treated with insecticides, depends on the hybrid and chemical product used in their treatment and that the reduction in feasibility and vigor of seeds treated with thiametoxan is intensified due to the storage period extension.

  13. Effects of surface condition on aqueous corrosion and environmental embrittlement of iron aluminides

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Perrin, R.L.; Buchanan, R.A. [Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN (United States)

    1996-08-01

    Effects of retained high-temperature surface oxides, produced during thermomechanical processing and/or heat treatment, on the aqueous-corrosion and environmental-embrittlement characteristics of Fe{sub 3}Al-based iron aluminides (FA-84, FA-129 and FAL-Mo), a FeAl-based iron aluminide (FA-385), and a disordered low-aluminum Fe-Al alloy (FAPY) were evaluated. All tests were conducted at room temperature in a mild acid-chloride solution. In cyclic-anodic-polarization testing for aqueous-corrosion behavior, the surface conditions examined were: as-received (i.e., with the retained high-temperature oxides), mechanically cleaned and chemically cleaned. For all materials, the polarization tests showed the critical pitting potentials to be significantly lower in the as-received condition than in the mechanically-cleaned and chemically-cleaned conditions. These results indicate detrimental effects of the retained high-temperature oxides in terms of increased susceptibilities to localized corrosion. In 200-hour U-bend stress-corrosion-cracking tests for environmental-embrittlement behavior, conducted at open-circuit corrosion potentials and at a hydrogen-charging potential of {minus}1500 mV (SHE), the above materials (except FA-385) were examined with retained oxides and with mechanically cleaned surfaces. At the open-circuit corrosion potentials, none of the materials in either surface condition underwent cracking. At the hydrogen-charging potential, none of the materials with retained oxides underwent cracking, but FA-84, FA-129 and FAL-Mo in the mechanically cleaned condition did undergo cracking. These results suggest beneficial effects of the retained high-temperature oxides in terms of increased resistance to environmental hydrogen embrittlement.

  14. Degradation of the pharmaceuticals diclofenac and sulfamethoxazole and their transformation products under controlled environmental conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Poirier-Larabie, S. [Aquatic Contaminants Research Division, Science and Water Technology Directorate, Environment Canada, Montréal, Québec H2Y 2E7 (Canada); Segura, P.A. [Department of Chemistry, Université de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, Québec J1K 2R1 (Canada); Gagnon, C., E-mail: christian.gagnon@canada.ca [Aquatic Contaminants Research Division, Science and Water Technology Directorate, Environment Canada, Montréal, Québec H2Y 2E7 (Canada)

    2016-07-01

    Contamination of the aquatic environment by pharmaceuticals via urban effluents is well known. Several classes of drugs have been identified in waterways surrounding these effluents in the last 15 years. To better understand the fate of pharmaceuticals in ecosystems, degradation processes need to be investigated and transformation products must be identified. Thus, this study presents the first comparative study between three different natural environmental conditions: photolysis and biodegradation in aerobic and anaerobic conditions both in the dark of diclofenac and sulfamethoxazole, two common drugs present in significant amounts in impacted surface waters. Results indicated that degradation kinetics differed depending on the process and the type of drug and the observed transformation products also differed among these exposure conditions. Diclofenac was nearly degraded by photolysis after 4 days, while its concentration only decreased by 42% after 57 days of exposure to bacteria in aerobic media and barely 1% in anaerobic media. For sulfamethoxazole, 84% of the initial concentration was still present after 11 days of exposure to light, while biodegradation decreased its concentration by 33% after 58 days of exposure under aerobic conditions and 5% after 70 days of anaerobic exposure. In addition, several transformation products were observed and persisted over time while others degraded in turn. For diclofenac, chlorine atoms were lost primarily in the photolysis, while a redox reaction was promoted by biodegradation under aerobic conditions. For sulfamethoxazole, isomerization was favored by photolysis while a redox reaction was also favored by the biodegradation under aerobic conditions. To summarize this study points out the occurrence of different transformation products under variable degradation conditions and demonstrates that specific functional groups are involved in the tested natural attenuation processes. Given the complexity of environmental

  15. Suboptimal performance on neuropsychological tests in patients with suspected chronic toxic encephalopathy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Hout, MSE; Schmand, B; Wekking, EM; Hageman, G; Deelman, BG

    Suboptimal performance during neuropsychological testing can seriously complicate assessment in behavioral neurotoxicology. We present data on the prevalence of suboptimal performance in a group of Dutch patients with suspected chronic toxic encephalopathy (CTE) after long-term occupational exposure

  16. Suboptimal performance on neuropsychological tests in patients with suspected chronic toxic encephalopathy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Hout, Moniek S. E.; Schmand, Ben; Wekking, Ellie M.; Hageman, Gerard; Deelman, Betto G.

    2003-01-01

    Suboptimal performance during neuropsychological testing can seriously complicate assessment in behavioral neurotoxicology. We present data on the prevalence of suboptimal performance in a group of Dutch patients with suspected chronic toxic encephalopathy (CTE) after long-term occupational exposure

  17. U0{sub 2} pellets surface properties and environmental conditions effects on the wet adsorption

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Junqueira, Fabio da S.; Carnaval, Joao Paulo R., E-mail: fabiojunqueira@inb.gov.br, E-mail: joaocarnaval@inb.gov.br [Industrias Nucleares do Brasil S.A. (INB), Resende, Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil)

    2013-07-01

    Angra power plants fuels are made bye en riche uranium dioxide (UO{sub 2}) pellets which are assembled inside metal tubes. These tubes are welded and arranged in order to perform the final product, the fuel assembly. The UO{sub 2} pellets have a specified humidity tolerance designed to comply with security and performance requirements when working under operating conditions in the reactor. This work intends to verify the pellet opened porosity and the environmental conditions (relative humidity and temperature) influence on the wet adsorption by UO{sub 2} pellet. The work was done in 2 parts: Firstly, pallets groups from 3 opened porosity levels were tested under a fixed relative humidity, temperature and time. In the second part of the work, the most critical pallet group upon wet adsorption was tested under different relative humidity and temperature conditions, regarding design of experiments. The opened porosity and environmental conditions tests allowed the evolution of the wet adsorption by the UO{sub 2} pallet. (author)

  18. The influence of environmental conditions on Carum carvi L. var. annum seed quality

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    Aćimović Milica

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Field experiments were carried out during two growing seasons with annual caraway, at three localities, in order to determine the effect of different environmental conditions on the quality of seed as reproductive material. During the experiment, it was found that the quality of caraway seed was significantly lower in the hotter and drier year in comparison to the year with moderate conditions. Unfavourable weather conditions caused premature ripening and consequently thousand seed weight was low and lower amounts of essential oils were stored in the seed. By applying the linear regressions method it was established that the total variability of both thousand seed weight and the amount of essential oil per seed were due to its association with harvest index. Because of better characteristics of seed during the moderate year, the germination energy and total germination were significantly higher, and reproductive material was of good quality.

  19. Working conditions, psychosocial environmental factors, and depressive symptoms among wage workers in South Korea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sohn, Minsung; Choi, Mankyu; Jung, Minsoo

    2016-07-01

    In South Korea, the number of workers suffering from mental illnesses, such as depression, has rapidly increased. There is growing concern about depressive symptoms being associated with both working conditions and psychosocial environmental factors. To investigate potential psychosocial environmental moderators in the relationship between working conditions and occupational depressive symptoms among wage workers. Data were obtained from the wage worker respondents (n = 4,095) of the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey of 2009. First, chi-square tests confirmed the differences in working conditions and psychosocial characteristics between depressive and non-depressive groups. Second, multivariate logistic regression analysis was performed to examine the moderating effects of the psychosocial environmental factors between working conditions and depressive symptoms. After adjusting for potential covariates, the likelihood of depressive symptomatology was high among respondents who had dangerous jobs and flexible work hours compared to those who had standard jobs and fixed daytime work hours (OR = 1.66 and 1.59, respectively). Regarding psychosocial factors, respondents with high job demands, low job control, and low social support were more likely to have depressive symptoms (OR = 1.26, 1.58 and 1.61, respectively). There is a need to develop non-occupational intervention programs, which provide workers with training about workplace depression and improve social support, and the programs should provide time for employees to have active communication. Additionally, companies should provide employees with support to access mental healthcare thereby decreasing the occurrence of workplace depression.

  20. Detection of respiratory viruses in shelter dogs maintained under varying environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monteiro, Francielle Liz; Cargnelutti, Juliana Felipetto; Martins, Mathias; Anziliero, Deniz; Erhardt, Magnólia Martins; Weiblen, Rudi; Flores, Eduardo Furtado

    Three dog shelters in Rio Grande do Sul were investigated for associations between the occurrence of respiratory viruses and shelter environmental conditions. Nasal secretions randomly collected during the cold season were tested via PCR, and this data collection was followed by nucleotide sequencing of the amplicons. In shelter #1 (poor sanitary and nutritional conditions, high animal density and constant contact between dogs), 78% (58/74) of the nasal samples were positive, 35% (26/74) of which were in single infections and 44% (32/74) of which were in coinfections. Shelters #2 and #3 had satisfactory sanitary and nutritional conditions, outdoors exercise areas (#2) and animal clustering by groups (#3). In shelter #2, 9% (3/35) of the samples were positive for Canine parainfluenza virus (CPIV), and 6% (2/35) were positive for Canid herpesvirus 1 (CaHV-1). In shelter #3, 9% (7/77) of the samples were positive for Canine adenovirus type 2 (CAdV-2), and 1% (1/77) were positive for Canine distemper virus (CDV). The amplicon sequences (CPIV and CDV nucleoprotein gene; CAdV-2 E3 gene; CaHV-1 glycoprotein B gene) showed 94-100% nucleotide identity with GenBank sequences. Our results demonstrate that CPIV, CAdV-2 and CDV are common in dog shelters and that their frequencies appear to be related with environmental and nutritional conditions. These results indicate the need for control/prevention measures, including vaccination and environmental management, to minimize these infections and improve dog health. Copyright © 2016 Sociedade Brasileira de Microbiologia. Published by Elsevier Editora Ltda. All rights reserved.

  1. Detection of respiratory viruses in shelter dogs maintained under varying environmental conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francielle Liz Monteiro

    Full Text Available Abstract Three dog shelters in Rio Grande do Sul were investigated for associations between the occurrence of respiratory viruses and shelter environmental conditions. Nasal secretions randomly collected during the cold season were tested via PCR, and this data collection was followed by nucleotide sequencing of the amplicons. In shelter #1 (poor sanitary and nutritional conditions, high animal density and constant contact between dogs, 78% (58/74 of the nasal samples were positive, 35% (26/74 of which were in single infections and 44% (32/74 of which were in coinfections. Shelters #2 and #3 had satisfactory sanitary and nutritional conditions, outdoors exercise areas (#2 and animal clustering by groups (#3. In shelter #2, 9% (3/35 of the samples were positive for Canine parainfluenza virus (CPIV, and 6% (2/35 were positive for Canid herpesvirus 1 (CaHV-1. In shelter #3, 9% (7/77 of the samples were positive for Canine adenovirus type 2 (CAdV-2, and 1% (1/77 were positive for Canine distemper virus (CDV. The amplicon sequences (CPIV and CDV nucleoprotein gene; CAdV-2 E3 gene; CaHV-1 glycoprotein B gene showed 94-100% nucleotide identity with GenBank sequences. Our results demonstrate that CPIV, CAdV-2 and CDV are common in dog shelters and that their frequencies appear to be related with environmental and nutritional conditions. These results indicate the need for control/prevention measures, including vaccination and environmental management, to minimize these infections and improve dog health.

  2. Clothing insulation and temperature, layer and mass of clothing under comfortable environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kwon, JuYoun; Choi, Jeongwha

    2013-07-01

    This study was designed to investigate the relationship between the microclimate temperature and clothing insulation (Icl) under comfortable environmental conditions. In total, 20 subjects (13 women, 7 men) took part in this study. Four environmental temperatures were chosen: 14°C (to represent March/April), 25°C (May/June), 29°C (July/August), and 23°C (September/October). Wind speed (0.14ms-1) and humidity (45%) were held constant. Clothing microclimate temperatures were measured at the chest (Tchest) and on the interscapular region (Tscapular). Clothing temperature of the innermost layer (Tinnermost) was measured on this layer 30 mm above the centre of the left breast. Subjects were free to choose the clothing that offered them thermal comfort under each environmental condition. We found the following results. 1) All clothing factors except the number of lower clothing layers (Llower), showed differences between the different environmental conditions (Pclothing layers (Lupper) and total clothing mass (Mtotal) was 1.1 to 3.2 layers and 473 to 1659 g respectively. The range of Icl was 0.78 to 2.10 clo. 2) Post hoc analyses showed that analysis of Tinnermost produced the same results as for that of Icl. Likewise, the analysis of Lupper produced the same result as the analysis of the number of total layers (Ltotal) within an outfit. 3) Air temperature (ta) had positive relationships with Tchest and Tscapular and with Tinnermost but had inverse correlations with Icl, Mtotal, Lupper and Ltotal. Tchest, Tscapular, and Tinnermost increased as ta rose. 4) Icl had inverse relationships with Tchest and Tinnermost, but positive relationships with Mtotal, Lupper and Ltotal. Icl could be estimated by Mtotal, Lupper, and Tscapular using a multivariate linear regression model. 5) Lupper had positive relationships with Icl and Mtotal, but Llower did not. Subjects hardly changed Llower under environmental comfort conditions between March and October. This indicates that each

  3. Clothing insulation and temperature, layer and mass of clothing under comfortable environmental conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    This study was designed to investigate the relationship between the microclimate temperature and clothing insulation (Icl) under comfortable environmental conditions. In total, 20 subjects (13 women, 7 men) took part in this study. Four environmental temperatures were chosen: 14°C (to represent March/April), 25°C (May/June), 29°C (July/August), and 23°C (September/October). Wind speed (0.14ms-1) and humidity (45%) were held constant. Clothing microclimate temperatures were measured at the chest (Tchest) and on the interscapular region (Tscapular). Clothing temperature of the innermost layer (Tinnermost) was measured on this layer 30 mm above the centre of the left breast. Subjects were free to choose the clothing that offered them thermal comfort under each environmental condition. We found the following results. 1) All clothing factors except the number of lower clothing layers (Llower), showed differences between the different environmental conditions (Pclothing layers (Lupper) and total clothing mass (Mtotal) was 1.1 to 3.2 layers and 473 to 1659 g respectively. The range of Icl was 0.78 to 2.10 clo. 2) Post hoc analyses showed that analysis of Tinnermost produced the same results as for that of Icl. Likewise, the analysis of Lupper produced the same result as the analysis of the number of total layers (Ltotal) within an outfit. 3) Air temperature (ta) had positive relationships with Tchest and Tscapular and with Tinnermost but had inverse correlations with Icl, Mtotal, Lupper and Ltotal. Tchest, Tscapular, and Tinnermost increased as ta rose. 4) Icl had inverse relationships with Tchest and Tinnermost, but positive relationships with Mtotal, Lupper and Ltotal. Icl could be estimated by Mtotal, Lupper, and Tscapular using a multivariate linear regression model. 5) Lupper had positive relationships with Icl and Mtotal, but Llower did not. Subjects hardly changed Llower under environmental comfort conditions between March and October. This indicates that each

  4. Living under stressful conditions: Fish life history strategies across environmental gradients in estuaries

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teichert, Nils; Pasquaud, Stéphanie; Borja, Angel; Chust, Guillem; Uriarte, Ainhize; Lepage, Mario

    2017-03-01

    The life history strategies of fishes can be defined by specific combinations of demographic traits that influence species performances depending on environmental features. Hence, the constraints imposed by the local conditions restrict the range of successful strategies by excluding species poorly adapted. In the present study, we compared the demographic strategies of fish caught in 47 estuaries of the North East Atlantic coast, aiming to determine the specific attributes of resident species and test for changes in trait associations along the environmental gradients. Eight demographic traits were considered to project our findings within a conceptual triangular model, composed on three endpoint strategies: (i) periodic (large size, long generation time, high fecundity); (ii) opportunistic (small size, short generation time, high reproductive effort); and (iii) equilibrium (low fecundity, large egg size, parental care). We demonstrated that various life history strategies co-exist in estuaries, but equilibrium species were scarce and restricted to euhaline open-water. Resident species form a specialised assemblage adapted to high spatiotemporal variability of estuarine conditions, i.e. opportunistic attributes associated with parental care. Even with these singular attributes, our findings revealed changes in distribution of resident species across the estuarine gradients linked to their life history traits. Among other patterns, the diversity of life history strategies significantly decreased from euhaline to oligohaline areas and along gradient of human disturbances. These trends were associated with a convergence of species traits toward short generation times, suggesting that long-lived species with late maturation are more severely impacted by disturbance and environmental stress.

  5. Photoacclimation supports environmental tolerance of a sponge to turbid low-light conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biggerstaff, A.; Smith, D. J.; Jompa, J.; Bell, J. J.

    2015-12-01

    Changes to coral reefs are occurring worldwide, often resulting in declining environmental quality which can be in the form of higher sedimentation rates and increased turbidity. While environmental acclimation to turbid and low-light conditions has been extensively studied in corals, far less is known about other phototrophic reef invertebrates. The photosynthetic cyanobacteria containing sponge Lamellodysidea herbacea is one of the most abundant sponges in the Wakatobi Marine National Park (WMNP, Indonesia), and its abundance is greatest at highly disturbed, turbid sites. This study investigated photoacclimation of L. herbacea symbionts to turbid reef sites using in situ PAM fluorometry combined with shading and transplant experiments at environmental extremes of light availability for this species. We found in situ photoacclimation of L. herbacea to both shallow, clear, high-light environments and deep, turbid, low-light environments. Shading experiments provide some evidence that L. herbacea are dependent on nutrition from their photosymbionts as significant tissue loss was seen in shaded sponges. Symbionts within surviving shaded tissue showed evidence of photoacclimation. Lamellodysidea herbacea transplanted from high- to low-light conditions appeared to have photoacclimated within 5 d with no significant effect of the lowered light level on survival. This ability of L. herbacea to photoacclimate to rapid and extreme changes in light availability may be one of the factors contributing to their survival on more turbid reef sites in the WMNP. Our study highlights the ability of some sponge species to acclimate to changes in light levels as a result of increased turbidity.

  6. Environmental enrichment alters neuronal processing in the nucleus accumbens core during appetitive conditioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wood, David A; Rebec, George V

    2009-03-09

    Although the core region of the nucleus accumbens (NAcc) has been implicated in motor control and the acquisition of appetitive learning, these processes are altered by environmental experience. To assess how environment influences neuronal processing in NAcc core, we recorded single-unit activity during acquisition of an appetitive learning task in which rats reared in an environmentally enriched condition (EC) learned the operant response (nosepoke into a lit hole) for sucrose reinforcement faster than rats reared in an isolated condition (IC). In the first training session, even before the emergence of learning differences, core neurons were more likely to respond (increase or decrease activity) during the operant and consummatory responses in EC than IC rats. By the third training session, when learning differences emerged, EC neurons continued to be more responsive than IC neurons, but in very different ways: the response shifted to the cues that signaled trial onset (1900 Hz tone and green LED) and reward availability (4500 Hz tone and yellow LED). Cue-related responding, moreover, was dominated by neuronal excitations. In contrast, post-acquisition recordings revealed no EC-IC differences. Collectively, these results suggest that core neurons are initially more responsive to discrete, goal-directed movements in EC rats, but as learning materializes, the neuronal response shifts to the cues that predict these movements. Thus, environmental experience alters core neuronal processing of both motor- and sensory-related events but at different stages over the course of learning.

  7. Identifying the environmental conditions favouring West Nile Virus outbreaks in Europe.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matteo Marcantonio

    Full Text Available West Nile Virus (WNV is a globally important mosquito borne virus, with significant implications for human and animal health. The emergence and spread of new lineages, and increased pathogenicity, is the cause of escalating public health concern. Pinpointing the environmental conditions that favour WNV circulation and transmission to humans is challenging, due both to the complexity of its biological cycle, and the under-diagnosis and reporting of epidemiological data. Here, we used remote sensing and GIS to enable collation of multiple types of environmental data over a continental spatial scale, in order to model annual West Nile Fever (WNF incidence across Europe and neighbouring countries. Multi-model selection and inference were used to gain a consensus from multiple linear mixed models. Climate and landscape were key predictors of WNF outbreaks (specifically, high precipitation in late winter/early spring, high summer temperatures, summer drought, occurrence of irrigated croplands and highly fragmented forests. Identification of the environmental conditions associated with WNF outbreaks is key to enabling public health bodies to properly focus surveillance and mitigation of West Nile virus impact, but more work needs to be done to enable accurate predictions of WNF risk.

  8. Estimating the impact of environmental conditions on hatching results using multivariable analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    IA Nääs

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Hatching results are directly related to environmental and biological surroundings. This research study aimed at evaluating the influence of incubation environmental conditions on hatchability and one-day-old chickling quality of five production flocks using multivariable analysis tool. The experiment was carried out in a commercial hatchery located in the state of São Paulo, Brazil. Environmental variables such as dry bulb temperature, relative humidity, carbon dioxide concentration, and number of colony forming units of fungi were recorded inside a broiler multi-stage setter, a hatcher after eggs transference, and a chick-processing room. The homogeneity of parameter distribution among quadrants inside the setter, the hatcher, and the chick room was tested using the non-parametric test of Kruskal-Wallis, and the fit analysis was applied. The multivariate analysis was applied using the Main Component Technique in order to identify possible correlations between environmental and production parameters. Three different groups were identified: the first group is represented by temperature, which was positively correlated both with good hatchability and good chick quality; the second group indicates that poor chick quality was positively correlated with air velocity and relative humidity increase. The third group, represented by carbon dioxide concentration and fungi colonies forming units, presented strong positive association with embryo mortality increase.

  9. Useful model organisms, indicators, or both? Ground beetles (Coleoptera, Carabidae reflecting environmental conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matti Koivula

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Classic studies have successfully linked single-species abundances, life-history traits, assemblage structures and biomass of carabid beetles to past and present, human-caused environmental impacts and variation in ‘natural’ conditions. This evidence has led many to suggest carabids to function as ‘indicators’ − a term that bears multiple meanings. Here, a conservation-oriented definition for an indicator is used, carabid indicator potential from seven views is evaluated, and ways to proceed in indicator research are discussed. (1 Carabid species richness poorly indicates the richness and abundance of other taxa, which underlines the importance of using multiple taxa in environmental assessments. The ability of assemblage indices and specialist or functional-group abundances to reflect rare species and habitats should be examined in detail. (2 Experimental evidence suggests that carabids may potentially serve as keystone indicators. (3 Carabids are sensitive to human-altered abiotic conditions, such as pesticide use in agro-ecosystems and heavy metal contamination of soils. Carabids might thus reflect ecological sustainability and ‘ecosystem health’. (4 Carabid assemblages host abundant species characteristic of particular habitat types or successional stages, which makes them promising dominance indicators. (5 Carabids reflect variation in ‘natural’ conditions, but vegetation and structural features are more commonly adopted as condition indicators. Carabids nevertheless provide yet another, equally accurate, view on the structure of the environment. (6 Carabids may function as early-warning signalers, as suggested by recent studies linking climate and carabid distributions. (7 Carabids reflect natural and human-caused disturbances and management, but the usefulness of these responses for conservation purposes requires further research. In summary, European carabids appear useful model organisms and possibly indicators because

  10. Sub-optimal parenting is associated with schizotypic and anxiety personality traits in adulthood.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giakoumaki, S G; Roussos, P; Zouraraki, C; Spanoudakis, E; Mavrikaki, M; Tsapakis, E M; Bitsios, P

    2013-05-01

    Part of the variation in personality characteristics has been attributed to the child-parent interaction and sub-optimal parenting has been associated with psychiatric morbidity. In the present study, an extensive battery of personality scales (Trait Anxiety Inventory, Behavioural Inhibition/Activation System questionnaire, Eysenck Personality Questionnaire-Revised, Temperament and Character Inventory, Schizotypal Traits Questionnaire, Toronto Alexithymia Scale) and the Parental Bonding Instrument (PBI) were administered in 324 adult healthy males to elucidate the effects of parenting on personality configuration. Personality variables were analysed using Principal Component Analysis (PCA) and the factors "Schizotypy", "Anxiety", "Behavioural activation", "Novelty seeking" and "Reward dependence" were extracted. Associations between personality factors with PBI "care" and "overprotection" scores were examined with regression analyses. Subjects were divided into "parental style" groups and personality factors were subjected to categorical analyses. "Schizotypy" and "Anxiety" were significantly predicted by high maternal overprotection and low paternal care. In addition, the Affectionless control group (low care/high overprotection) had higher "Schizotypy" and "Anxiety" compared with the Optimal Parenting group (high care/low overprotection). These results further validate sub-optimal parenting as an important environmental exposure and extend our understanding on the mechanisms by which it increases risk for psychiatric morbidity. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  11. Environmental conditions influence the plant functional diversity effect on potential denitrification.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ariana E Sutton-Grier

    Full Text Available Global biodiversity loss has prompted research on the relationship between species diversity and ecosystem functioning. Few studies have examined how plant diversity impacts belowground processes; even fewer have examined how varying resource levels can influence the effect of plant diversity on microbial activity. In a field experiment in a restored wetland, we examined the role of plant trait diversity (or functional diversity, (FD and its interactions with natural levels of variability of soil properties, on a microbial process, denitrification potential (DNP. We demonstrated that FD significantly affected microbial DNP through its interactions with soil conditions; increasing FD led to increased DNP but mainly at higher levels of soil resources. Our results suggest that the effect of species diversity on ecosystem functioning may depend on environmental factors such as resource availability. Future biodiversity experiments should examine how natural levels of environmental variability impact the importance of biodiversity to ecosystem functioning.

  12. Influence of high gravity process conditions on the environmental impact of ethanol production from wheat straw.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janssen, Matty; Tillman, Anne-Marie; Cannella, David; Jørgensen, Henning

    2014-12-01

    Biofuel production processes at high gravity are currently under development. Most of these processes however use sugars or first generation feedstocks as substrate. This paper presents the results of a life cycle assessment (LCA) of the production of bio-ethanol at high gravity conditions from a second generation feedstock, namely, wheat straw. The LCA used lab results of a set of 36 process configurations in which dry matter content, enzyme preparation and loading, and process strategy were varied. The LCA results show that higher dry matter content leads to a higher environmental impact of the ethanol production, but this can be compensated by reducing the impact of enzyme production and use, and by polyethylene glycol addition at high dry matter content. The results also show that the renewable and non-renewable energy use resulting from the different process configurations ultimately determine their environmental impact. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Water retention of selected microorganisms and Martian soil simulants under close to Martian environmental conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jänchen, J.; Bauermeister, A.; Feyh, N.; de Vera, J.-P.; Rettberg, P.; Flemming, H.-C.; Szewzyk, U.

    2014-08-01

    Based on the latest knowledge about microorganisms resistant towards extreme conditions on Earth and results of new complex models on the development of the Martian atmosphere we quantitatively examined the water-bearing properties of selected extremophiles and simulated Martian regolith components and their interaction with water vapor under close to Martian environmental conditions. Three different species of microorganisms have been chosen and prepared for our study: Deinococcus geothermalis, Leptothrix sp. OT_B_406, and Xanthoria elegans. Further, two mineral mixtures representing the early and the late Martian surface as well as montmorillonite as a single component of phyllosilicatic minerals, typical for the Noachian period on Mars, were selected. The thermal mass loss of the minerals and bacteria-samples was measured by thermoanalysis. The hydration and dehydration properties were determined under close to Martian environmental conditions by sorption isotherm measurements using a McBain-Bakr quartz spring balance. It was possible to determine the total water content of the materials as well as the reversibly bound water fraction as function of the atmospheres humidity by means of these methods. Our results are important for the evaluation of future space mission outcomes including astrobiological aspects and can support the modeling of the atmosphere/surface interaction by showing the influence on the water inventory of the upper most layer of the Martian surface.

  14. Soil conditions drive changes in a key leaf functional trait through environmental filtering and facilitative interactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molina-Venegas, Rafael; Aparicio, Abelardo; Lavergne, Sébastien; Arroyo, Juan

    2018-01-01

    Non-random patterns in the functional structure of communities are often interpreted as evidence for different forces governing their assemblage. However, community assembly processes may act antagonistically, countering each other's signatures on the functional structure of communities, which may lead to spurious inferences on the underlying mechanisms. To illustrate this issue, we assessed the joint effects of environmental filtering and facilitative interactions on a key leaf functional trait (i.e. specific leaf area, SLA) in Mediterranean dwarf-shrub communities, using a two-scale sampling approach. Specifically, we analyzed differences in community-weighted mean SLA values (CWM-SLA) between communities (community-scale) and between guilds within communities (guild-scale, i.e. individuals sampled in understorey, overstorey and open-ground conditions) across contrasted soil environments and elevational gradients. We found that communities on harsh edaphic conditions (i.e. dolomite habitats) showed significantly lower CWM-SLA values than communities on more fertile habitats. In contrast, elevation was a poor predictor of differences in CWM-SLA between the communities. This suggests that environmental filtering may influence leaf trait variation along soil gradients irrespective of elevation. On the other hand, communities on dolomite habitats showed strong differences in CWM-SLA between understorey (higher CWM-SLA) and either open-ground and overstorey guilds (lower CWM-SLA), whereas communities on more fertile soils showed no differences between the guilds. The strong differences in CWM-SLA between understorey and non-understorey guilds in dolomite communities suggest that facilitative interactions may be particularly at stake under stressful edaphic conditions, thus partially mitigating the effect of environmental filtering (i.e. low SLA values) on communities growing in harsh soils.

  15. Individual Characteristics of Environmental Conditions of Settlement in Endemic Area of Leptospirosis in Semarang City

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tri Ramadhani

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Leptospirosis is an acute febrile illness infecting human and animal (zoonosis and caused by the bacteria leptospira. Semarang city is one endemic leptospirosis with incidence rate in 2009 of 13.27/100,000 and case fatality rate 3,5%. This study aimed to know the epidemiological characteristics of leptospirosis cases and the relationship of environmental conditions of settlement with the incidence of leptospirosis. The study was observational with cross sectional design. Data population are the people who visit the health center with clinical symptoms of leptospirosis and secondary data from the Health Department of Semarang. Sample are people who visited the health center with clinical symptoms of leptospirosis (mainly: fever (body temperature > 37C or fever accompanied by headache, muscle aches, conjunctivitis and rash. Data environmental conditions of settlement had beed observed and interviewed using, and analyzed bivariat with chi-square. The results show characteristics of respondents most of the age group 10-19 years (38.1%, male sex (56.2%, education level did not complete primary school (30.5% Distribution cases of leptospirosis attack more men (55% with mortality rate (CFR = 3.6, and in the age group 0-19 years that is as much as 32.5% (CFR=14.29. Environmental conditions associated with the occurrence of leptospirosis include kitchen wall not a wall, no plavond, open dumping and dirty house. To prevention transmission of leptospirosis, among others, hygiene sanitation,rat proofing so it does not make to nest rat.

  16. Contribution of environmental conditions in dental offices of Antioquia to the risk of mercury contamination

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jairo A. Ruiz C

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available This article is a product from the project “Environmental Management of Dental Amalgam in the State of Antioquia” which was carried out by the following research groups belonging to the University of Antioquia: Science and Biomedical Technology, Precious Materials, and Pirometallurgical and Materials Researches, as well as the private company New Stetic S. A., between February 2005 and February 2007. Objective: to describe the environmental conditions in 30 big dental offices of the State of Antioquia, Colombia. Those dental offices having more than five dental chairs in the same work place were defined as “big” for the purpose of this project. Due to the fact that these dental offices represents 85% of the population of reference, the results described in this article can be consequently considered as is they were derived from a census. The description is made bearing in mind the people who are exposed to the risk of mercury contamination due to their occupation. Materials and method: an observation tool was designed in order to be applied in each dental office. It contained aspects as floor and wall characteristics, ventilation, room temperature, storing place for mercury, elements for handling amalgam scraps, and those activities which deviate from the regular dental service in the same site. Each dental office was visited by a research engineer and an advanced engineering student on a previously defined date. The researchers were trained in advance to collect the information. Results: it was found that some big dental offices have inadequate conditions in their premises for offering their services, and do not have a good handling of the environmental conditions. That’s why immediate actions are mandatory to minimize the risk of mercury contamination.

  17. Iodine isotopes species fingerprinting environmental conditions in surface water along the northeastern Atlantic Ocean

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    He, Peng; Hou, Xiaolin; Aldahan, Ala

    2013-01-01

    Concentrations and species of iodine isotopes (127I and 129I) provide vital information about iodine geochemistry, environmental conditions and water masses exchange in oceans. Despite extensive investigations of anthropogenic 129I in the Arctic Ocean and the Nordic Seas, concentrations...... of the isotope in the Atlantic Ocean are, however, still unknown. We here present first data on 129I and 127I, and their species (iodide and iodate) in surface water transect along the northeastern Atlantic between 30° and 50°N. The results show iodate as the predominant species in the analyzed marine waters...... 129I in ocean environments and impact on climate at the ocean boundary layer....

  18. Oxidative stress in limpets exposed to different environmental conditions in the Beagle Channel.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malanga, Gabriela; Estevez, Maria Susana; Calvo, Jorge; Puntarulo, Susana

    2004-09-20

    The aim of this work was to study the oxidative profile of digestive glands of two limpets species (Nacella (Patinigera) magellanica and Nacella (Patinigera) deaurata) exposed to different environmental conditions. The intertidal population of N. (P.) magellanica is subjected to a wide variety of stresses not experienced by N. (P.) deaurata. Although a typical electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectrum of ascorbyl radical in digestive gland from both limpets was observed, neither ascorbyl radical content nor the ascorbyl radical content/ascorbate content ratio was significantly different, suggesting that the difference in the environmental conditions did not appear to be responsible for developing alterations in the oxidative status of both organisms at the hydrophilic level (e.g. cytosol). Lipid peroxidation in the digestive glands was estimated, both as the content of thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS) and as the content of lipid radicals assessed by EPR, in both organisms. TBARS and lipid radical content were 34.8 and 36.5%, respectively, lower in N. (P.) magellanica as compared to N. (P.) deaurata. On the other hand, total iron content and the rate of generation of superoxide anion were 47.9 and 51.4%, respectively, lower in N. (P.) magellanica as compared to N. (P.) deaurata. The activity of catalase and superoxide dismutase (SOD) was 35.3 and 128.6% higher in N. (P.) magellanica as compared to N. (P.) deaurata, respectively. No significant differences were determined between the digestive glands of both molluscs regarding the content of total thiols. alpha-Tocopherol and beta-carotene content were significantly lower in N. (P.) magellanica as compared to N. (P.) deaurata. A distinctive EPR signal for the adduct Fe--MGD--NO (g = 2.03 and a(N) = 12.5 G) was detected in the homogenates of digestive glands of both limpets. A significant difference in the content of the Fe-MGD-NO adduct in digestive glands from N. (P.) magellanica and N. (P

  19. Using data storage tags to link otolith macrostructure in Baltic cod Gadus morhua with environmental conditions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hüssy, Karin; Nielsen, Birgitte; Mosegaard, Henrik

    2009-01-01

    We examined otolith opacity of Baltic cod in relation to environmental conditions in order to evaluate the formation mechanisms of seasonal patterns used in age determination. Adult fish were tagged with data storage tags (DSTs) and a permanent mark was induced in the otoliths by injection...... as expected-but in non-spawning fish only. In spawners, the general trend was a decrease in opacity from pre- to post spawning. A significant - but positive - temperature effect was only found in the pre-spawning period. The negative effects during and following spawning were not significant. In spawners...

  20. Physical performance and environmental conditions: 2014 World Soccer Cup and 2016 Summer Olympics in Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veneroso, Christiano E; Ramos, Guilherme P; Mendes, Thiago T; Silami-Garcia, Emerson

    2015-01-01

    This editorial is for the special issue "Temperature sciences in Brazil" of the journal Temperature. It focuses on the physical performance and environmental conditions during the 2014 World Cup and the coming 2016 Summer Olympics. It emphasizes that a hot and humid environment imposes a great challenge to the human thermoregulation system, can lead to performance decrements, and increases the risk of developing hyperthermia. Adequate hydration, acclimatization, and body cooling strategies are effective interventions to minimize the risks associated with exercise in the heat.

  1. Oxidative stress in limpets exposed to different environmental conditions in the Beagle Channel

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Malanga, Gabriela; Estevez, Maria Susana; Calvo, Jorge; Puntarulo, Susana

    2004-09-20

    The aim of this work was to study the oxidative profile of digestive glands of two limpets species (Nacella (Patinigera) magellanica and Nacella (Patinigera) deaurata) exposed to different environmental conditions. The intertidal population of N. (P.) magellanica is subjected to a wide variety of stresses not experienced by N. (P.) deaurata. Although a typical electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectrum of ascorbyl radical in digestive gland from both limpets was observed, neither ascorbyl radical content nor the ascorbyl radical content/ascorbate content ratio was significantly different, suggesting that the difference in the environmental conditions did not appear to be responsible for developing alterations in the oxidative status of both organisms at the hydrophilic level (e.g. cytosol). Lipid peroxidation in the digestive glands was estimated, both as the content of thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS) and as the content of lipid radicals assessed by EPR, in both organisms. TBARS and lipid radical content were 34.8 and 36.5%, respectively, lower in N. (P.) magellanica as compared to N. (P.) deaurata. On the other hand, total iron content and the rate of generation of superoxide anion were 47.9 and 51.4%, respectively, lower in N. (P.) magellanica as compared to N. (P.) deaurata. The activity of catalase and superoxide dismutase (SOD) was 35.3 and 128.6% higher in N. (P.) magellanica as compared to N. (P.) deaurata, respectively. No significant differences were determined between the digestive glands of both molluscs regarding the content of total thiols. {alpha}-Tocopherol and {beta}-carotene content were significantly lower in N. (P.) magellanica as compared to N. (P.) deaurata. A distinctive EPR signal for the adduct Fe-MGD-NO (g = 2.03 and a{sub N} = 12.5 G) was detected in the homogenates of digestive glands of both limpets. A significant difference in the content of the Fe-MGD-NO adduct in digestive glands from N. (P.) magellanica and N. (P

  2. Portuguese native Artemia parthenogenetica resisting invasion by Artemia franciscana - Assessing reproductive parameters under different environmental conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinto, Pedro M.; Hontoria, Francisco; Vieira, Natividade; Bio, Ana

    2014-05-01

    There is widespread interest in the conservation of native Artemia biodiversity. In Portugal, only two known populations of native Artemia remain: one in the Rio Maior salina, the other in the Aveiro salina complex, both of the diploid Artemia parthenogenetica species. All other Portuguese hypersaline environments where Artemia can be found have been invaded by Artemia franciscana, which has eradicated the native strains. Invasiveness and resilience of, respectively, exotic and indigenous species are thought to depend on strain-specific traits and adaptation to local conditions. This work evaluates the reproductive performance of the two Portuguese native strains and the invasive species exposed to different salinities, temperatures, photoperiods and food supplies. Reproduction periods, quantity and quality of offspring varied significantly, depending on both the Artemia strain and environmental conditions. A. parthenogenetica from Rio Maior reproduced better than A. franciscana at high salinity (150) and low food supply, which may reflect an adaptation to its biotope that aids its resistance to invasion. But A. parthenogenetica form Aveiro performed much worse than its invasive competitor, under most of the conditions tested. It is unlikely that A. franciscana has not been introduced in this salina by chance alone. Other biological traits of the local A. parthenogenetica or adaptation to unstudied local factors (e.g. pollution) are probably responsible for this strain's survival. Further knowledge on specific local conditions and trait-specific tolerances to biotic and abiotic conditions are needed to understand (non-)invasion patterns and preserve the remaining native populations.

  3. Interventions via Social Influence for Emergent Suboptimal Restraint Use

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ziad KOBTI

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Although restraint use has increased primarily in developed countries, vehicle accident-related injuries and deaths continue to be a problem. Alongside lack of restraint use, studies involving suboptimal restraint use have gained recent popularity. In this study we investigate the use of social influence forinterventions to counter emerging suboptimal restraint use in groups of agents.A multi-agent simulation model is provided where dominant individuals use randomly assigned influence rates to repeatedly alter the knowledge of lessinfluential group members. Cultural influence is implemented via a cultural algorithm and used to simulate individuals affected by beliefs in the community. Objectives include investigating the emergence of patterns of restraint selection and use as well as interventions targeted at more influential agents. Results demonstrate that prominent patterns of behaviour similar to the influentialmembers of the groups do emerge. Furthermore, interventions targeted at influential group members outperform interventions targeted at a percentage of the population at large. Interventions succeed at some level both in the presence and absence of cultural influence.

  4. Optimal inference with suboptimal models: addiction and active Bayesian inference.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwartenbeck, Philipp; FitzGerald, Thomas H B; Mathys, Christoph; Dolan, Ray; Wurst, Friedrich; Kronbichler, Martin; Friston, Karl

    2015-02-01

    When casting behaviour as active (Bayesian) inference, optimal inference is defined with respect to an agent's beliefs - based on its generative model of the world. This contrasts with normative accounts of choice behaviour, in which optimal actions are considered in relation to the true structure of the environment - as opposed to the agent's beliefs about worldly states (or the task). This distinction shifts an understanding of suboptimal or pathological behaviour away from aberrant inference as such, to understanding the prior beliefs of a subject that cause them to behave less 'optimally' than our prior beliefs suggest they should behave. Put simply, suboptimal or pathological behaviour does not speak against understanding behaviour in terms of (Bayes optimal) inference, but rather calls for a more refined understanding of the subject's generative model upon which their (optimal) Bayesian inference is based. Here, we discuss this fundamental distinction and its implications for understanding optimality, bounded rationality and pathological (choice) behaviour. We illustrate our argument using addictive choice behaviour in a recently described 'limited offer' task. Our simulations of pathological choices and addictive behaviour also generate some clear hypotheses, which we hope to pursue in ongoing empirical work. Copyright © 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  5. Avian migrants adjust migration in response to environmental conditions en route

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tøttrup, Anders P; Thorup, Kasper; Rainio, Kalle

    2008-01-01

    The onset of migration in birds is assumed to be primarily under endogenous control in long-distance migrants. Recently, climate changes appear to have been driving a rapid change in breeding area arrival. However, little is known about the climatic factors affecting migratory birds during...... the migration cycle, or whether recently reported phenological changes are caused by plastic behavioural responses or evolutionary change. Here, we investigate how environmental conditions in the wintering areas as well as en route towards breeding areas affect timing of migration. Using data from 1984 to 2004...... covering the entire migration period every year from observatories located in the Middle East and northern Europe, we show that passage of the Sahara Desert is delayed and correlated with improved conditions in the wintering areas. By contrast, migrants travel more rapidly through Europe, and adjust...

  6. ANALYSIS OF THE ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS OF LANDSCAPES UNDER MINING DEVELOPMENT IN PRIOKHOTJE: ASSESSMENT METHODS AND MAPPING

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. N. Makhinov

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The paper presents landscape and geochemical characteristics, as well as identifies the sources of pollution of soil and surface watercourses in the Conder mining field, located in the extreme natural conditions. Chemical elements migration mechanisms and factors are described. Spatial heterogeneity of concentrations of chemical elements is considered as a function of element migration activity within organo-mineral complexes. The authors also analyze the state and regularities of natural and anthropogenic soil structures; show the role of natural and anthropogenic factors in the formation of water quality; investigate the conditions of the elements migration in the surface waters of different origin; formulate key principles of natural resource management, environmentally adapted to mountain specifics of northern regions of the Far East.

  7. Environmental and physiological conditions affecting Tetrahymena sp. infection in guppies, Poecilia reticulata Peters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pimenta Leibowitz, M; Ariav, R; Zilberg, D

    2005-09-01

    Parasitic infections caused by Tetrahymena sp. constitute a serious problem in guppies, Poecilia reticulata. Tetrahymena was isolated from skin lesions of naturally infected guppies in a commercial aquaculture farm, cultured in vitro and used in subsequent experimental infections. In addition to guppies, angelfish, Pterophyllum scalare, platyfish, Xiphophorus maculates, and neontetra, Paracheirodon innesi, were susceptible, whereas tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus xO. aureus) was resistant. The ciliate had a high affinity for dead fish. Skin abrasion did not affect the infection, but fish with gas bubble disease exhibited a significantly higher infection than non-affected fish. Infection was significantly higher when fish were exposed to high levels of ammonia, high organic load and low water temperatures. Under shipment conditions, infection was significantly elevated. Full recovery was achieved at a low fish density. Results suggest that poor environmental and physiological conditions enhance infection with Tetrahymena sp.

  8. Nonlinear Dielectric Properties of Yeast Cells Cultured in Different Environmental Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kawanishi, Gomon; Fukuda, Naoki; Muraji, Masafumi

    The harmonics of the electric current through yeast suspensions, the nonlinear dielectric properties of yeast cells, have particular patterns according to the biological activity of the cells and the measurement of these patterns is a technique for determining the activity of living cells. The concentration of glucose and oxygen in yeast culture medium influences the manifestation of fermentation or respiration of yeast cells. Measurements were made with yeast cells (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) cultured aerobically and anaerobically in sufficient glucose concentration, aerobic fermentation and anaerobic fermentation, and aerobically in limited glucose concentration, respiration. The results showed that the harmonics were barely apparent for yeast cells in aerobic fermentation and respiratory; however, cells in the anaerobic fermentation displayed substantial third and fifth harmonics. We can say that environmental condition affects the yeast cells' nonlinear properties, from another viewpoint, the measurements of the nonlinear properties are available to determine the activity of yeast cells adjusted to the conditions of their cultivation.

  9. The impact of environmental conditions on Campylobacter jejuni survival in broiler faeces and litter

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shaun Smith

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Campylobacter jejuni is the leading bacterial food-borne pathogen within the European Union, and poultry meat is an important vehicle for its transmission to humans. However, there is limited knowledge about how this organism persists in broiler litter and faeces. The aim of this study was to assess the impact of a number of environmental parameters, such as temperature, humidity, and oxygen, on Campylobacter survival in both broiler litter and faeces. Materials and methods: Used litter was collected from a Campylobacter-negative broiler house after final depopulation and fresh faeces were collected from transport crates. Samples were confirmed as Campylobacter negative according to modified ISO methods for veterinary samples. Both sample matrices were inoculated with 9 log10 CFU/ml C. jejuni and incubated under high (≥85% and low (≤70% relative humidity conditions at three different temperatures (20°C, 25°C, and 30°C under both aerobic and microaerophilic atmospheres. Inoculated litter samples were then tested for Campylobacter concentrations at time zero and every 2 hours for 12 hours, while faecal samples were examined at time zero and every 24 hours for 120 hours. A two-tailed t-test assuming unequal variance was used to compare mean Campylobacter concentrations in samples under the various temperature, humidity, and atmospheric conditions. Results and discussion: C. jejuni survived significantly longer (P≤0.01 in faeces, with a minimum survival time of 48 hours, compared with 4 hours in used broiler litter. C. jejuni survival was significantly enhanced at 20°C in all environmental conditions in both sample matrices tested compared with survival at 25°C and 30°C. In general, survival was greater in microaerophilic compared with aerobic conditions in both sample matrices. Humidity, at the levels examined, did not appear to significantly impact C. jejuni survival in any sample matrix. The persistence of Campylobacter

  10. Effects of nutritional and environmental conditions on Sinorhizobium meliloti biofilm formation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rinaudi, Luciana; Fujishige, Nancy A; Hirsch, Ann M; Banchio, Erika; Zorreguieta, Angeles; Giordano, Walter

    2006-11-01

    Rhizobia are non-spore-forming soil bacteria that fix atmospheric nitrogen into ammonia in a symbiosis with legume roots. However, in the absence of a legume host, rhizobia manage to survive and hence must have evolved strategies to adapt to diverse environmental conditions. The capacity to respond to variations in nutrient availability enables the persistence of rhizobial species in soil, and consequently improves their ability to colonize and to survive in the host plant. Rhizobia, like many other soil bacteria, persist in nature most likely in sessile communities known as biofilms, which are most often composed of multiple microbial species. We have been employing in vitro assays to study environmental parameters that might influence biofilm formation in the Medicago symbiont Sinorhizobium meliloti. These parameters include carbon source, amount of nitrate, phosphate, calcium and magnesium as well as the effects of osmolarity and pH. The microtiter plate assay facilitates the detection of subtle differences in rhizobial biofilms in response to these parameters, thereby providing insight into how environmental stress or nutritional status influences rhizobial survival. Nutrients such as sucrose, phosphate and calcium enhance biofilm formation as their concentrations increase, whereas extreme temperatures and pH negatively affect biofilm formation.

  11. The Influence of Environmental Conditions, Lipid Composition, and Phase Behavior on the Origin of Cell Membranes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Jacquelyn A.; Rana, F. R.

    2007-06-01

    At some point in life’s development, membranes formed, providing barriers between the environment and the interior of the ‘cell.’ This paper evaluates the research to date on the prebiotic origin of cell membranes and highlights possible areas of continuing study. A careful review of the literature uncovered unexpected factors that influence membrane evolution. The major stages in primitive membrane formation and the transition to contemporary cell membranes appear to require an exacting relationship between environmental conditions and amphiphile composition and phase behavior. Also, environmental and compositional requirements for individual stages are in some instances incompatible with one another, potentially stultifying the pathway to contemporary membranes. Previous studies in membrane evolution have noted the effects composition and environment have on membrane formation but the crucial dependence and interdependence on these two factors has not been emphasized. This review makes clear the need to focus future investigations away from proof-of-principle studies towards developing a better understanding of the roles that environmental factors and lipid composition and polymorphic phase behavior played in the origin and evolution of cell membranes.

  12. EFFECT OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS AND ACTIVITIES INTENSIFICATION OF GROWTH ON LYUBINSKY SCALED CARP TRIBAL FINGERLINGS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I. Hrytsyniak

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Purpose. To explore effect of environmental conditions, the level of development of natural food base and feeding of cultivated fodder zooplankton on tribal fingerlings Lyubinsky scaly carp growth. Methodology. The development of natural food base of nursery ponds stimulated bymaking compost from cattle at 4 t/ha and the introduction of the mother culture of Daphnia magna at 2 kg/ha. In the experimental pond in July was introduced of 60 kg/ha of zooplankton caught in the pond-cultivator which is based on daphnia magna, also in this pond Daphnia magna cultured in corf of nylon sieve, allowing fingerlings carp in July – August, was suckled by 5 kg/ha of water fleas. the growth of carp fingerlings were determined by regular check-caughting and analyzed, taking into account environmental conditions, availability of natural food and feeding characteristics. Findings. Prior to the beginning feeding carp fingerlings of average daily increments were higher by 10 % under the best of natural food base pond. In July, when feeding carp fry feed cereal, the introduction of zooplankton contributed to their highest intensity on 46,8 – 88,4 % growth, while the average daily growth rates ranged between 0,4 – 1,0 g. In August, average daily growth decreased from 0,44 – 0,57 g in the first decade to 0,17 g in the third decade. For unstable oxygen regime, which was observed when the temperature of the water and the accumulation of organic matter, the rate of growth of fingerlings decreased. Originality. First studied the growth rate of breeding fingerlings carp provided they are feeding zooplankton, as well as, the influence of environmental factors, the state of development of natural food base and feed composition on the growth of of fingerlings. Found that under favorable environmental conditions, feeding carp fingerlings on zooplankton in the amount of 2 kg/ha/day when feeding grain feed increases the absolute daily gain on 46,8 – 88,4 %, and the

  13. Species traits and environmental conditions govern the relationship between biodiversity effects across trophic levels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spooner, D.E.; Vaughn, C.C.; Galbraith, H.S.

    2012-01-01

    Changing environments can have divergent effects on biodiversity-ecosystem function relationships at alternating trophic levels. Freshwater mussels fertilize stream foodwebs through nutrient excretion, and mussel species-specific excretion rates depend on environmental conditions. We asked how differences in mussel diversity in varying environments influence the dynamics between primary producers and consumers. We conducted field experiments manipulating mussel richness under summer (low flow, high temperature) and fall (moderate flow and temperature) conditions, measured nutrient limitation, algal biomass and grazing chironomid abundance, and analyzed the data with non-transgressive overyielding and tripartite biodiversity partitioning analyses. Algal biomass and chironomid abundance were best explained by trait-independent complementarity among mussel species, but the relationship between biodiversity effects across trophic levels (algae and grazers) depended on seasonal differences in mussel species' trait expression (nutrient excretion and activity level). Both species identity and overall diversity effects were related to the magnitude of nutrient limitation. Our results demonstrate that biodiversity of a resource-provisioning (nutrients and habitat) group of species influences foodweb dynamics and that understanding species traits and environmental context are important for interpreting biodiversity experiments. ?? 2011 Springer-Verlag.

  14. IMPACT OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS ON THE LIFE CYCLE OF EDITIONS OF BOOKS KEPT IN ARCHIVES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natalia Onici

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available A library is a collection of sources, resources, and services, and the structure in which it is housed; it is organized foruse and maintained by a public body, an institution, or a private individual. In the more traditional sense, a library is acollection of books.This paper presents studies about the importance of environmental conditions on the life cycle of editions of books keptin archives and libraries. Under which it was established that environmental conditions do not meet current standards,which led to the development of microorganisms on the surface both editions of books and libraries as reviewed.Manuscripts and printed books are the part of national and universal cultural heritage, along with other spiritualvalues that define spirituality of a nation.Library policy scope has evolved and continues to develop within the meaning of complication because of a range offactors: social, economic, political, etc.. Governmental strategies and decisions of public authorities are deeplydetermined by convergence, globalization and cooperation undoubtedly lead to regrouping library institutions invarious areas: computerization, trade, digitization, etc.

  15. Environmental and Geometrical Conditions to Sustain Crevice Corrosion in Alloy 22

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Carranza, R M; Rodr?guez, M A; Rebak, R B

    2006-11-10

    Alloy 22 (N06022) is highly resistant to localized corrosion. Under aggressive environmental conditions Alloy 22 may be susceptible to crevice corrosion in hot chloride (Cl{sup -}) solutions. The objective of the present work was to explore the environmental and geometrical conditions for crevice corrosion to occur. Electrochemical tests were performed using PCA and prismatic mill annealed Alloy 22 specimens in chloride solutions. Crevice corrosion current density was found to be a function of applied potential. i{sub CREV} values ranged from 40 {micro}A/cm{sup 2} to 20 mA/cm{sup 2}. Such low values of current density explained the absence of pitting corrosion in Alloy 22 at any potential. Decreasing of the effective diffusion distance in a propagating crevice is thought to cause crevice corrosion stifling or repassivation after long anodic polarization. Crevice corrosion breakdown potential is expected to decrease with potential scan rate, approaching repassivation potential for low scan rates. The lowest corrosion potential of Alloy 22 in hydrochloric acid solutions at which active corrosion exists was proposed as the lowest possible repassivation potential for crevice corrosion.

  16. Physico-chemical characterization of steel slag. Study of its behavior under simulated environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Navarro, Carla; Díaz, Mario; Villa-García, María A

    2010-07-15

    The chemical and mineralogical composition of steel slag produced in two ArcelorMittal steel plants located in the North of Spain, as well as the study of the influence of simulated environmental conditions on the properties of the slag stored in disposal areas, was carried out by elemental chemical analysis, XRF, X-ray diffraction, thermal analysis, and scanning electron microscopy with EDS analyzer. Spectroscopic characterization of the slag was also performed by using FTIR spectroscopy. Due to the potential uses of the slag as low cost adsorbent for water treatment and pollutants removal, its detailed textural characterization was carried out by nitrogen adsorption-desorption at 77 K and mercury intrusion porosimetry. The results show that the slag is a crystalline heterogeneous material whose main components are iron oxides, calcium (magnesium) compounds (hydroxide, oxide, silicates, and carbonate), elemental iron, and quartz. The slags are porous materials with specific surface area of 11 m(2)g(-1), containing both mesopores and macropores. Slag exposure to simulated environmental conditions lead to the formation of carbonate phases. Carbonation reduces the leaching of alkaline earth elements as well as the release of the harmful trace elements Cr (VI) and V. Steel slags with high contents of portlandite and calcium silicates are potential raw materials for CO(2) long-term storage.

  17. Environmental conditions associated with lesions in introduced free-ranging sheep in Hawai‘i

    Science.gov (United States)

    Powers, Jenny G.; Duncan, Colleen G.; Spraker, Terry R.; Schuler, Bridget A.; Hess, Steven C.; Faford, Jonathan K.J.; Sin, Hans

    2014-01-01

    Wildlife species which have been translocated between temperate and tropical regions of the world provide unique opportunities to understand how disease processes may be affected by environmental conditions. European mouflon sheep (Ovis gmelini musimon) from the Mediterranean Islands were introduced to the Hawaiian Islands for sport hunting beginning in 1954 and were subsequently hybridized with feral domestic sheep (O. aries), which had been introduced in 1793. Three isolated mouflon populations have become established in the Hawaiian Islands but diseases in these populations have been little studied. The objective of this study was to evaluate and compare gross and histologic lesions in respiratory, renal, and hepatic systems of free-ranging sheep in two isolated volcanic environments on Hawai‘i Island. Tissue and fecal samples were collected in conjunction with population reductions during February 2011. We found gross or histologic evidence of lungworm infection in 44/49 sheep from Mauna Loa which were exposed to gaseous emissions from Kīlauea Volcano. In contrast, only 7/50 sheep from Mauna Kea had lesions consistent with lungworm, but Mauna Kea sheep had significantly more upper respiratory tract inflammation and hyperplasia consistent with chronic antigenic stimulation, possibly associated with exposure to fine airborne particulates during extended drought conditions. We hypothesize that gasses from Kīlauea Volcano contributed to severity of respiratory disease principally associated with chronic lungworm infections at Mauna Loa; however, there were numerous other potentially confounding environmental factors and interactions that merit further investigation.

  18. The role of abiotic environmental conditions and herbivory in shaping bacterial community composition in floral nectar.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michal Samuni-Blank

    Full Text Available Identifying the processes that drive community assembly has long been a central theme in ecology. For microorganisms, a traditional prevailing hypothesis states that "everything is everywhere, but the environment selects". Although the bacterial community in floral nectar may be affected by both atmosphere (air-borne bacteria and animals as dispersal vectors, the environmental and geographic factors that shape microbial communities in floral nectar are unknown. We studied culturable bacterial communities in Asphodelus aestivus floral nectar and in its typical herbivorous bug Capsodes infuscatus, along an aridity gradient. Bacteria were sampled from floral nectar and bugs at four sites, spanning a geographical range of 200 km from Mediterranean to semi-arid conditions, under open and bagged flower treatments. In agreement with the niche assembly hypothesis, the differences in bacterial community compositions were explained by differences in abiotic environmental conditions. These results suggest that microbial model systems are useful for addressing macro-ecological questions. In addition, similar bacterial communities were found in the nectar and on the surface of the bugs that were documented visiting the flowers. These similarities imply that floral nectar bacteria dispersal is shaped not only by air borne bacteria and nectar consumers as previously reported, but also by visiting vectors like the mirid bugs.

  19. Temperature effect on rose downy mildew development under environmental controlled conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan José Filgueira D.

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The rose downy mildew disease, caused by Peronospora sparsa Berkeley, is one of the most important that affect rose crops in Colombia. To manage this disease, flower growers must deal with high-costs due to the excessive application of fungicides, but without good results. Studies on P. sparsa behavior have shown its narrow relationship with environmental conditions. In this study, the temperature effect was evaluated during the infection and sporulation of P. sparsa in Charlotte leaflets, a susceptible commercial variety, through an environmental controlled conditions system. Infection and sporulation were observed at different temperatures in a range of from 4 to 40°C. Infection with the absence of or very low sporulation was observed at 4°C. The most favorable pathogen responses were between 15 and 18°C in terms of inoculum concentration and sporulation percentage. There was no infection or leaflet change above 35°C. According to the results, sporulation can occur from 4 to 33°C, confirming the fact that P. sparsa is able to reproduce throughout a wide temperature range.

  20. Environmental conditions and human drivers for changes to north Ethiopian mountain landscapes over 145 years.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nyssen, Jan; Frankl, Amaury; Haile, Mitiku; Hurni, Hans; Descheemaeker, Katrien; Crummey, Donald; Ritler, Alfons; Portner, Brigitte; Nievergelt, Bernhard; Moeyersons, Jan; Munro, Neil; Deckers, Jozef; Billi, Paolo; Poesen, Jean

    2014-07-01

    As quantitative or spatially distributed studies of environmental change over truly long-term periods of more than 100 years are extremely rare, we re-photographed 361 landscapes that appear on historical photographs (1868-1994) within a 40,000 km(2) study area in northern Ethiopia. Visible evidence of environmental changes apparent from the paired photographs was analyzed using an expert rating system. The conditions of the woody vegetation, soil and water conservation structures and land management were worse in the earlier periods compared to their present conditions. The cover by indigenous trees is a notable exception: it peaked in the 1930s, declined afterwards and then achieved a second peak in the early 21st century. Particularly in areas with greater population densities, there has been a significant increase in woody vegetation and soil and water conservation structures over the course of the study period. We conclude that except for an apparent upward movement of the upper tree limit, the direct human impacts on the environment are overriding the effects of climate change in the north Ethiopian highlands and that the northern Ethiopian highlands are currently greener than at any other time in the last 145 years. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Using Magnetically Responsive Tea Waste to Remove Lead in Waters under Environmentally Relevant Conditions

    KAUST Repository

    Yeo, Siang Yee

    2013-06-20

    We report the use of a simple yet highly effective magnetite-waste tea composite to remove lead(II) (Pb2+) ions from water. Magnetite-waste tea composites were dispersed in four different types of water–deionized (DI), artificial rainwater, artificial groundwater and artificial freshwater–that mimic actual environmental conditions. The water samples had varying initial concentrations (0.16–5.55 ppm) of Pb2+ ions and were mixed with the magnetite-waste tea composite for at least 24 hours to allow adsorption of the Pb2+ ions to reach equilibrium. The magnetite-waste tea composites were stable in all the water samples for at least 3 months and could be easily removed from the aqueous media via the use of permanent magnets. We detected no significant leaching of iron (Fe) ions into the water from the magnetite-waste tea composites. The percentage of Pb adsorbed onto the magnetite-waste tea composite ranged from ~70% to 100%; the composites were as effective as activated carbon (AC) in removing the Pb2+ ions from water, depending on the initial Pb concentration. Our prepared magnetite-waste tea composites show promise as a green, inexpensive and highly effective sorbent for removal of Pb in water under environmentally realistic conditions.

  2. Experimental evidence of population differences in reproductive investment conditional on environmental stochasticity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gauthey, Zoé [INRA, UMR 1224, Ecologie Comportementale et Biologie des Populations de Poissons, Aquapôle, quartier Ibarron, 64310 Saint-Pée sur Nivelle (France); Univ Pau & Pays Adour, UMR 1224, Ecologie Comportementale et Biologie des Populations de Poissons, UFR Sciences et Techniques de la Côte Basque, Allée du parc Montaury, 64600 Anglet (France); Panserat, Stéphane [INRA, UR 107, Nutrition Metabolism Aquaculture, Aquapôle, 64310 Saint Pée sur Nivelle (France); Elosegi, Arturo [Faculty of Science and Technology, University of the Basque Country UPV/EHU, 48080 Bilbao (Spain); Herman, Alexandre [INRA, UR 107, Nutrition Metabolism Aquaculture, Aquapôle, 64310 Saint Pée sur Nivelle (France); Tentelier, Cédric [INRA, UMR 1224, Ecologie Comportementale et Biologie des Populations de Poissons, Aquapôle, quartier Ibarron, 64310 Saint-Pée sur Nivelle (France); Univ Pau & Pays Adour, UMR 1224, Ecologie Comportementale et Biologie des Populations de Poissons, UFR Sciences et Techniques de la Côte Basque, Allée du parc Montaury, 64600 Anglet (France); and others

    2016-01-15

    Environmental stochasticity is expected to shape life histories of species, wherein organisms subjected to strong environmental variation should display adaptive response by being able to tune their reproductive investment. For riverine ecosystems, climate models forecast an increase in the frequency and intensity of extreme events such as floods and droughts. The speed and the mechanisms by which organisms may adapt their reproductive investment are therefore of primary importance to understand how species will cope with such radical environmental changes. In the present study, we sampled spawners from two different populations of wild brown trout, originating from two environments with contrasting levels of flow stochasticity. We placed them in sympatry within an experimental channel during reproductive season. In one modality, water flow was maintained constant, whereas in another modality, water flow was highly variable. Reproductive investment of all individuals was monitored using weight and energetic plasma metabolite variation throughout the reproductive season. Only the populations originating from the most variable environment showed a plastic response to experimental manipulation of water flow, the females being able to reduce their weight variation (from 19.2% to 13.1%) and metabolites variations (from 84.2% to 18.6% for triglycerides for instance) under variable flow conditions. These results imply that mechanisms to cope with environmental stochasticity can differ between populations of the same species, where some populations can be plastic whereas other cannot. - Highlights: • We place two populations of brown trout under contrasting water flow for reproduction. • Energetic metabolite variation is used as a cue of reproductive investment. • In constant flow, both populations show the same reproductive investment. • In variable flow, only one of the populations modifies its reproductive investment. • Divergent evolution of reproductive

  3. A comparison of cytokine responses during prolonged cycling in normal and hot environmental conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ludmila M Cosio-Lima

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Ludmila M Cosio-Lima, Bhargav V Desai, Petra B Schuler, Lesley Keck, Logan ScheelerDepartment of Health, Leisure, and Exercise Science, University of West Florida, Pensacola, FL, USAPurpose: Components of immune function are affected by physical activity in an adverse environment. The purpose of this study was to compare plasma differences in inflammatory cytokines including tumor necrosis factor α (TNF-α and interleukin 6 (IL-6, in addition to the stress hormone cortisol, during prolonged cycling under normal and hot environmental conditions in elite cyclists.Methods and design: Six trained elite male cyclists (27 ± 8 years; 75.5 ± 4 kg; maximum oxygen uptake [VO2max] = 66 ± 6 mL/kg/min, mean ± SD. The cyclists biked for 2.5 h at their prescribed 60% maximum exercise workload (Wmax or 75% VO2max either in an environmental chamber set at 15°C and 40% relative humidity (NEUTRAL or at 35°C and 40% relative humidity (HOT. The cyclists were given 4 mL of water/kg body weight every 15 min under both conditions.Results: Total cortisol concentrations were elevated (P < 0.05 immediately postexercise and 12 h postexercise in both the NEUTRAL and HOT conditions. TNF-α concentrations were only significantly (P = 0.045 elevated postexercise in HOT conditions. During the HOT conditions, a significant (P = 0.006 and 0.007, respectively difference in IL-6 was seen immediately after and 12 h postexercise. During the NEUTRAL condition, IL-6 was only significantly elevated postexercise (P < 0.05.Conclusions: Heat exposure during a long bout of exercise is sufficient to elicit stress response in elite cyclists. However, the degree of release of anti-inflammatory and proinflammatory cytokines might be related to several factors that include the athlete’s fitness level, hydration status, exercise intensity, and length of exposure to hot environments.Keywords: cytokines, inflammation, heat, exercise, performance 

  4. Suboptimal Larval Habitats Modulate Oviposition of the Malaria Vector Mosquito Anopheles coluzzii.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eunho Suh

    Full Text Available Selection of oviposition sites by gravid females is a critical behavioral step in the reproductive cycle of Anopheles coluzzii, which is one of the principal Afrotropical malaria vector mosquitoes. Several studies suggest this decision is mediated by semiochemicals associated with potential oviposition sites. To better understand the chemosensory basis of this behavior and identify compounds that can modulate oviposition, we examined the generally held hypothesis that suboptimal larval habitats give rise to semiochemicals that negatively influence the oviposition preference of gravid females. Dual-choice bioassays indicated that oviposition sites conditioned in this manner do indeed foster significant and concentration dependent aversive effects on the oviposition site selection of gravid females. Headspace analyses derived from aversive habitats consistently noted the presence of dimethyl disulfide (DMDS, dimethyl trisulfide (DMTS and 6-methyl-5-hepten-2-one (sulcatone each of which unitarily affected An. coluzzii oviposition preference. Electrophysiological assays across the antennae, maxillary palp, and labellum of gravid An. coluzzii revealed differential responses to these semiochemicals. Taken together, these findings validate the hypothesis in question and suggest that suboptimal environments for An. coluzzii larval development results in the release of DMDS, DMTS and sulcatone that impact the response valence of gravid females.

  5. Evaluation of Environmental Conditions on the Curing Of Commercial Fixative and Intumescent Coatings

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nicholson, J. C. [Savannah River Site (SRS), Aiken, SC (United States). Savannah River National Lab. (SRNL)

    2017-01-10

    Performance metrics for evaluating commercial fixatives are often not readily available for important parameters that must be considered per the facility safety basis and the facility Basis for Interim Operations (BIO). One such parameter is the behavior of such materials in varied, “non-ideal” conditions where ideal is defined as 75 °F, 40% RH. Coupled with the inherent flammable nature of the fixative materials that can act to propagate flame along surfaces that are otherwise fireproof (concrete, sheet metal), much is left unknown when considering the safety basis implications for introducing these materials into nuclear facilities. Through SRNL’s efforts, three (3) fixatives, one (1) decontamination gel, and six (6) intumescent coatings were examined for their responses to environmental conditions to determine whether these materials were impervious to non-nominal temperatures and humidities that may be found in nuclear facilities. Characteristics that were examined included set-to-touch time, dust free time, and adhesion testing of the fully cured compounds. Of these ten materials, three were two-part epoxy materials while the other seven consisted of only one constituent. The results show that the epoxies tested are unable to cure in sub-freezing temperatures, with the low temperatures inhibiting crosslinking to a very significant degree. These efforts show significant inhibiting of performance for non-nominal environmental conditions, something that must be addressed both in the decision process for a fixative material to apply and per the safety basis to ensure the accurate flammability and material at risk is calculated.

  6. Evaluation of Environmental Conditions on the Curing Of Commercial Fixative and Intumescent Coatings

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nicholson, J. C. [Savannah River Site (SRS), Aiken, SC (United States). Savannah River National Lab. (SRNL)

    2016-09-26

    Performance metrics for evaluating commercial fixatives are often not readily available for important parameters that must be considered per the facility safety basis and the facility Basis for Interim Operations (BIO). One such parameter is the behavior of such materials in varied, “non-ideal” conditions where ideal is defined as 75 °F, 40% RH. Coupled with the inherent flammable nature of the fixative materials that can act to propagate flame along surfaces that are otherwise fireproof (concrete, sheet metal), much is left unknown when considering the safety basis implications for introducing these materials into nuclear facilities. Through SRNL’s efforts, three (3) fixatives, one (1) decontamination gel, and six (6) intumescent coatings were examined for their responses to environmental conditions to determine whether these materials were impervious to non-nominal temperatures and humidities that may be found in nuclear facilities. Characteristics that were examined included set-to-touch time, dust free time, and adhesion testing of the fully cured compounds. Of these ten materials, three were two-part epoxy materials while the other seven consisted of only one constituent. The results show that the epoxies tested are unable to cure in sub-freezing temperatures, with the low temperatures inhibiting crosslinking to a very significant degree. These efforts show significant inhibiting of performance for non-nominal environmental conditions, something that must be addressed both in the decision process for a fixative material to apply and per the safety basis to ensure the accurate flammability and material at risk is calculated.

  7. Feature-preserving surface mesh smoothing via suboptimal Delaunay triangulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Zhanheng; Yu, Zeyun; Holst, Michael

    2013-01-01

    A method of triangular surface mesh smoothing is presented to improve angle quality by extending the original optimal Delaunay triangulation (ODT) to surface meshes. The mesh quality is improved by solving a quadratic optimization problem that minimizes the approximated interpolation error between a parabolic function and its piecewise linear interpolation defined on the mesh. A suboptimal problem is derived to guarantee a unique, analytic solution that is significantly faster with little loss in accuracy as compared to the optimal one. In addition to the quality-improving capability, the proposed method has been adapted to remove noise while faithfully preserving sharp features such as edges and corners of a mesh. Numerous experiments are included to demonstrate the performance of the method.

  8. Risk of Suboptimal Iodine Intake in Pregnant Norwegian Women

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Helle Margrete Meltzer

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Pregnant women and infants are exceptionally vulnerable to iodine deficiency. The aims of the present study were to estimate iodine intake, to investigate sources of iodine, to identify predictors of low or suboptimal iodine intake (defined as intakes below 100 μg/day and 150 μg/day in a large population of pregnant Norwegian women and to evaluate iodine status in a sub-population. Iodine intake was calculated based on a validated Food Frequency Questionnaire in the Norwegian Mother and Child Cohort. The median iodine intake was 141 μg/day from food and 166 μg/day from food and supplements. Use of iodine-containing supplements was reported by 31.6%. The main source of iodine from food was dairy products, contributing 67% and 43% in non-supplement and iodine-supplement users, respectively. Of 61,904 women, 16.1% had iodine intake below 100 μg/day, 42.0% had iodine intake below 150 μg/day and only 21.7% reached the WHO/UNICEF/ICCIDD recommendation of 250 μg/day. Dietary behaviors associated with increased risk of low and suboptimal iodine intake were: no use of iodine-containing supplements and low intake of milk/yogurt, seafood and eggs. The median urinary iodine concentration measured in 119 participants (69 μg/L confirmed insufficient iodine intake. Public health strategies are needed to improve and secure the iodine status of pregnant women in Norway.

  9. Three Global Land Cover and Use Stage considering Environmental Condition and Economic Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, W. K.; Song, C.; Moon, J.; Ryu, D.

    2016-12-01

    The Mid-Latitude zone can be broadly defined as part of the hemisphere between around 30° - 60° latitude. This zone is a home to over more than 50% of the world population and encompasses about 36 countries throughout the principal regions which host most of the global problems related to development and poverty. Mid-Latitude region and its ecotone demands in-depth analysis, however, latitudinal approach has not been widely recognized, considering that many of natural resources and environment indicators, as well as social and economic indicators are based on administrative basis or by country and regional boundaries. This study sets the land cover change and use stage based on environmental condition and economic development. Because various land cover and use among the regions, form vegetated parts of East Asia and Mediterranean to deserted parts of Central Asia, the forest area was varied between countries. In addition, some nations such as North Korea, Afghanistan, Pakistan showed decreasing trends in forest area whereas some nations showed increasing trends in forest area. The economic capacity for environmental activities and policies for restoration were different among countries. By adopting the standard from IMF or World Bank, developing and developed counties were classified. Based on the classification, this study suggested the land cover and use stages as degradation, restoration, and sustainability. As the degradation stage, the nations which had decreasing forest area with less environmental restoration capacity based on economic size were selected. As the restoration stage, the nation which had increasing forest area or restoration capacity were selected. In the case of the sustainability, the nation which had enough restoration capacity with increasing forest area or small ratio in forest area decreasing were selected. In reviewing some of the past and current major environmental challenges that regions of Mid-Latitudes are facing, grouping by

  10. Hydrolysis of terbufos using simulated environmental conditions: rates, mechanisms, and product analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hong, F; Win, K Y; Pehkonen, S O

    2001-12-01

    This study focuses on the hydrolysis of terbufos, an organophosphorus pesticide. Combining GC-MS and wet chemistry methods, di-tert-butyl disulfide and formaldehyde were identified and quantified as major degradation products. Diethyl dithiophosphate was also indirectly identified as a degradation product under alkaline conditions. Hydrolysis rate constants of terbufos under homogeneous conditions were comparable to those of phorate and show relative insensitivity to pH under slightly acidic to neutral pH conditions, as the observed rate constants varied only in the range of (4.5-5.0) x 10(-6) s(-1) between pH 5.7 and 9.4; neutral hydrolysis is thus the most dominant hydrolysis pathway of terbufos in ambient waters. The mechanisms for terbufos hydrolysis and the formation of the major products and their temporal profiles are discussed. To assess the environmental impact of degradation products of this widely used pesticide, Microtox was used to analyze the toxicity of terbufos and two of its degradation products: diethyl dithiophosphate and di-tert-butyl disulfide; the EC(50) of terbufos was found to be >17 microM, whereas the EC(50) of di-tert-butyl disulfide was 1.3 microM.

  11. INFLUENCE OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS ON PROPERTIES OF IONOMERIC AND RESIN SEALANT MATERIALS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kantovitz, Kamila Rosamilia; Pascon, Fernanda Miori; Correr, Gisele Maria; Alonso, Roberta Caroline Bruschi; Rodrigues, Lidiany Karla Azevedo; Alves, Marcelo Correa; Puppin-Rontani, Regina Maria

    2009-01-01

    Objectives: The aim of this study was to determine the effect of environmental conditions on the degradation of ionomeric and resin sealant materials. Material and Methods: FluroShield, Vitremer, and Ketac Molar disc-shaped specimens (n=18/material) were prepared, polished, subjected to initial hardness and roughness readings. Six discs of each material were randomly assigned to one of three different storage solutions: 0.3% citric acid (CA), demineralization solution (DE), and remineralization solution (RE). The specimens were individually immersed in 3 mL of the test solutions, which were daily changed. After 15 days of storage, new surface roughness and hardness readings were done. Fluoride release in the solutions was measured within 15 days. Data were analyzed by ANOVA and Tukey's and Contrast tests (α=0.05). Results: The storage in CA increased the roughness of Vitremer and Ketac Molar. A significant reduction in hardness was observed for all materials after storage in all solutions. For all materials, the greatest amounts of fluoride release occurred during the 1st day. FluroShield presented the same patterns of fluoride release in all solutions. Ketac Molar and Vitremer released the highest amounts of fluoride in the CA solution. Conclusions: Ionomeric materials are more susceptible to degradation than resin-based materials under acidic conditions. Acidic conditions lead to a higher fluoride release from ionomeric materials. PMID:19668988

  12. Influence of environmental conditions on properties of ionomeric and resin sealant materials

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kamila Rosamilia Kantovitz

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVES: The aim of this study was to determine the effect of environmental conditions on the degradation of ionomeric and resin sealant materials. MATERIAL AND METHODS: FluroShield, Vitremer, and Ketac Molar disc-shaped specimens (n=18/material were prepared, polished, subjected to initial hardness and roughness readings. Six discs of each material were randomly assigned to one of three different storage solutions: 0.3% citric acid (CA, demineralization solution (DE, and remineralization solution (RE. The specimens were individually immersed in 3 mL of the test solutions, which were daily changed. After 15 days of storage, new surface roughness and hardness readings were done. Fluoride release in the solutions was measured within 15 days. Data were analyzed by ANOVA and Tukey's and Contrast tests (α=0.05. RESULTS: The storage in CA increased the roughness of Vitremer and Ketac Molar. A significant reduction in hardness was observed for all materials after storage in all solutions. For all materials, the greatest amounts of fluoride release occurred during the 1st day. FluroShield presented the same patterns of fluoride release in all solutions. Ketac Molar and Vitremer released the highest amounts of fluoride in the CA solution. CONCLUSIONS: Ionomeric materials are more susceptible to degradation than resin-based materials under acidic conditions. Acidic conditions lead to a higher fluoride release from ionomeric materials.

  13. Production of native arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi inoculum under different environmental conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yamir Torres-Arias

    Full Text Available Abstract In order to obtain an arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF native inoculum from Sierra de Moa and determine the most appropriate conditions for its big scale production, four light and temperature combinations were tested in three plant species (Calophyllum antillanum, Talipariti elatum and Paspalum notatum. Growth and development parameters, as well as the mycorrhizal functioning of the seedlings were evaluated. The natural light treatment under high temperatures (L-H was the most suitable for the growth and development of the three plant species, showing the highest total biomass values, mainly of root, and a positive root-shoot ratio balance. This treatment also promoted higher values of root mycorrhizal colonization, external mycelium and AMF spore density. A total of 38 AMF species were identified among the plants and environmental conditions tested. Archaeospora sp.1, Glomus sp.5, Glomus brohultii and G. glomerulatum were observed in all the treatments. The L-H condition can be recommended for native inoculum production, as it promotes a better expression of the AM symbiosis and an elevated production of mycorrhizal propagules.

  14. Imprint of past and present environmental conditions on microbiology and biogeochemistry of coastal Quaternary sediments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Beck

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available To date, North Sea tidal-flat sediments have been intensively studied down to a depth of 5 m below seafloor (mbsf. However, little is known about the biogeochemistry, microbial abundance, and activity of sulfate reducers as well as methanogens in deeper layers. In this study, two 20 m-long cores were retrieved from the tidal-flat area of Spiekeroog Island, NW Germany. The drill sites were selected with a close distance of 900 m allowing to compare two depositional settings: first, a paleo-channel filled with Holocene sediments and second, a mainly Pleistocene sedimentary succession. Analyzing these cores, we wanted to test to which degree the paleo-environmental imprint is superimposed by present processes.

    In general, the numbers of bacterial 16S rRNA genes are one to two orders of magnitude higher than those of Archaea. The abundances of key genes for sulfate reduction and methanogenesis (dsrA and mcrA correspond to the sulfate and methane profiles. A co-variance of these key genes at sulfate-methane interfaces and enhanced ex situ AOM rates suggest that anaerobic oxidation of methane may occur in these layers. Microbial and biogeochemical profiles are vertically stretched relative to 5 m-deep cores from shallower sediments in the same study area, but still appear compressed compared to deep sea sediments. Our interdisciplinary analysis shows that the microbial abundances and metabolic rates are elevated in the Holocene compared to Pleistocene sediments. However, this is mainly due to present environmental conditions such as pore water flow and organic matter availability. The paleo-environmental imprint is still visible but superimposed by these processes.

  15. Environmental conditions affect the color, taste, and antioxidant capacity of 11 pomegranate accessions' fruits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwartz, Elinor; Tzulker, Revital; Glazer, Ira; Bar-Ya'akov, Irit; Wiesman, Zeev; Tripler, Effi; Bar-Ilan, Igal; Fromm, Hillel; Borochov-Neori, Hamutal; Holland, Doron; Amir, Rachel

    2009-10-14

    The well-established health beneficial value of pomegranate juice is leading to increased demand for pomegranate products and to the expansion of pomegranate orchards worldwide. The current study describes differences in the chemical composition of major ingredients of the arils and peels of 11 accessions grown in Mediterranean and desert climates in Israel. In most of the accessions, the levels of antioxidant activity and content of total phenolics, total anthocyanins, total soluble solids, glucose, fructose, and acidity were higher in the aril juice of fruit grown in the Mediterranean climate compared to those grown in the desert climate. However, the peels of fruit grown in the desert climate exhibited higher antioxidant activity, and the levels of total phenolics, including the two hydrolyzable tannins, punicalagin and punicalin, were higher compared to those in the peels of fruit grown in the Mediterranean climate. The results indicate that environmental conditions significantly affect pomegranate fruit quality and health beneficial compounds.

  16. Effects of Ionizing Irradiation on Mushrooms as Influenced by Physiological and Environmental Conditions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Skou, Jens-Peder; Bech, K.; Lundsten, K.

    1974-01-01

    The effects of irradiation with β (10 MeV fast electrons)- and γ-rays were studied on several characters in strains of the cultured mushroom under different physiological and environmental conditions, including uncut and cut mushrooms, tightness of packing, and relative humidity. Weight loss...... was greatest in the non-irradiated mushrooms owing to evaporation from an increased surface area resulting from expansion and ripening which were greatly retarded in the irradiated samples. Twenty-five krads of β- or γ-rays had a significant, but transitory, effect on the veil opening. The inhibition became...... opening rates. Expansion and elongation were retarded significantly by 100 krads. The effect improved further with increasing dose. Irradiation improved the skin colour when the mushrooms were stored uncovered or in boxes with perforated PVC-foil. The opposite was the case when the boxes were sealed...

  17. Soil Physical and Environmental Conditions Controlling Patterned-Ground Variability at a Continuous Permafrost Site, Svalbard

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Watanabe, Tatsuya; Matsuoka, Norikazu; Christiansen, Hanne Hvidtfeldt

    2017-01-01

    This study examines soil physical and environmental conditions controlling patterned-ground variability on an alluvial fan in a continuous permafrost landscape, at Adventdalen, Svalbard. On-site monitoring of ground temperature, soil moisture and snow depth, laboratory analyses of soil physical...... properties and principal component analysis indicate that the distribution of patterned ground depends primarily on soil texture, soil moisture and the winter ground thermal regime associated with snow cover. Mudboils and composite patterns (mudboils surrounded by small polygons) occupy well-drained areas...... composed of clay-rich aeolian sediments. Compared to mudboils, composite patterns show a sharper contrast in soil texture between barren centres and vegetated rims. Hummocks filled with organic materials develop on poorly drained lowlands associated with a shallow water table. Ice-wedge polygons...

  18. Effects of ecological interactions and environmental conditions on community dynamics in an estuarine ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, H.; Minello, T.; Sutton, G.

    2016-02-01

    Coastal marine ecosystems are both productive and vulnerable to human and natural stressors. Examining the relative importance of fishing, environmental variability, and habitat alteration on ecosystem dynamics is challenging. Intensive harvest and habitat loss have resulted in widespread concerns related to declines in fisheries production, but causal mechanisms are rarely clear. In this study, we modeled trophic dynamics in Galveston Bay, Texas, using fishery-independent catch data for blue crab, shrimp, red drum, Atlantic croaker and spotted seatrout along with habitat information collected by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department during 1984 - 2014. We developed a multispecies state-space model to examine ecological interactions and partition the relative effects of trophic interactions and environmental conditions on the community dynamics. Preliminary results showed the importance of salinity, density-dependence, and trophic interactions. We are continuing to explore these results from a perspective of fish community compensatory responses to exploitation, reflecting both direct and indirect effects of harvesting under the influence of climate variability.

  19. Can contrasting environmental conditions of mangroves induce morphological variability in Aratus pisonii (Crustacea: Brachyura: Sesarmidae?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beatriz López-Sánchez

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Aratus pisonii is one of the most common crab species in Neotropical mangroves. It shows great plasticity in its life history traits, which makes it an interesting subject for comparative studies. This study evaluated the morphometric variability in five populations of A. pisonii inhabiting mangroves with different degrees of structural development under contrasting environmental conditions. Mangrove forests located on the northwest coast of Venezuela were studied during the rainy season in 2006. The results showed morphometric differences and interaction between sampling sites and sex (PERMANOVA, P=0.0001, as well as the presence of five morphological groups in males and four in females. The findings support the existence of sexual dimorphism. Females from the dwarf hypersaline mangrove showed a wide variability associated with the chelipeds. The differences in crab morphology between sites seem to be related to a combination of environmental factors that is unique for each habitat, leading to the formation of different morphological groups, in which the mangrove structural development (resource availability and salinity (which compromises the energy budget play an important role. The presence of more robust chelipeds in females from the dwarf hypersaline mangrove seems to reflect an adaptation to the biomechanical properties of the leaves (sclerophylly.

  20. The impact of different environmental conditions on cognitive function: a focused review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lee eTaylor

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Cognitive function defines performance in objective tasks that require conscious mental effort. Extreme environments, namely heat, hypoxia, and cold can all alter human cognitive function due to a variety of psychological and/or biological processes. The aims of this Focused Review were to discuss; 1 the current state of knowledge on the effects of heat, hypoxic and cold stress on cognitive function, 2 the potential mechanisms underpinning these alterations, and 3 plausible interventions that may maintain cognitive function upon exposure to each of these environmental stressors. The available evidence suggests that the effects of heat, hypoxia and cold stress on cognitive function are both task and severity dependent. Complex tasks are particularly vulnerable to extreme heat stress, whereas both simple and complex task performance appear to be vulnerable at even at moderate altitudes. Cold stress also appears to negatively impact both simple and complex task performance, however, the research in this area is sparse in comparison to heat and hypoxia. In summary, this focused review provides updated knowledge regarding the effects of extreme environmental stressors on cognitive function and their biological underpinnings. Tyrosine supplementation may help individuals maintain cognitive function in very hot, hypoxic, and/or cold conditions. However, more research is needed to clarify these and other postulated interventions.

  1. The influence of ionic strength on the interaction of viruses with charged surfaces under environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaldach, C M; Bourcier, William L; Shaw, Henry F; Viani, Brian E; Wilson, W D

    2006-02-01

    The influence of ionic strength on the electrostatic interaction of viruses with environmentally relevant surfaces was determined for three viruses, MS2, Q beta, and Norwalk. The virus is modeled as a particle comprised of ionizable amino acid residues in a shell surrounding a spherical RNA core of negative charge, these charges being compensated for by a Coulomb screening due to intercalated ions. A second model of the virus involving surface charges only is included for comparison. Surface potential calculations for each of the viruses show excellent agreement with electrophoretic mobility and zeta potential measurements as a function of pH. The environmental surface is modeled as a homogeneous plane held at constant potential with and without a finite region (patch) of opposite potential. The results indicate that the electrostatic interaction between the virus and the oppositely charged patch is significantly influenced by the conditions of ionic strength, pH and size of the patch. Specifically, at pH 7, the Norwalk virus interacts more strongly with the patch than MS2 (approximately 51 vs approximately 9kT) but at pH 5, the Norwalk-surface interaction is negligible while that of MS2 is approximately 5.9kT. The resulting ramifications for the use of MS2 as a surrogate for Norwalk are discussed.

  2. Plant response to environmental conditions: assessing potential production, water demand and negative effects of water deficit

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francois eTardieu

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available This paper reviews methods for analyzing plant performance and its genetic variability under a range of environmental conditions. Biomass accumulation is linked every day to available light in the PAR domain, multiplied by the proportion of light intercepted by plants and by the radiation use efficiency. Total biomass is cumulated over the duration of the considered phase (e.g. plant cycle or vegetative phase. These durations are essentially constant for a given genotype provided that time is corrected for temperature (thermal time. Several ways of expressing thermal time are reviewed. Two alternative equations are presented, based either on the effect of transpiration, or on yield components. Their comparative interests and drawbacks are discussed. The genetic variability of each term of considered equations affects yield under water deficit, via mechanisms at different scales of plant organisation and time. The effect of any physiological mechanism on yield of stressed plants acts via one of these terms, although the link is not always straightforward. Finally, I propose practical ways to compare of the productivity of genotypes in field environments, and a ‘minimum dataset’ of environmental data and traits that should be recorded for that.

  3. Application of molluscan analyses to the reconstruction of past environmental conditions in estuaries: Chapter 15

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wingard, G. Lynn; Surge, Donna

    2017-01-01

    Molluscs possess a number of attributes that make them an excellent source of past environmental conditions in estuaries: they are common in estuarine environments; they typically have hard shells and are usually well preserved in sediments; they are relatively easy to detect in the environment; they have limited mobility as adults; they grow by incremental addition of layers to their shells; and they are found in all the major environments surrounding estuaries—terrestrial, freshwater, brackish, and marine waters. Analysis of molluscan assemblages can contribute information about past changes in sea level, climate, land use patterns, anthropogenic alterations, salinity, and other parameters of the benthic habitat and water chemistry within the estuary. High-resolution (from less than a day to annual) records of changes in environmental parameters can be obtained by analyzing the incremental growth layers in mollusc shells (sclerochronology). The shell layers retain information on changes in water temperature, salinity, seasonality, climate, river discharge, productivity, pollution and human activity. Isotopic analyses of mollusc shell growth layers can be problematic in estuaries where water temperatures and isotopic ratios can vary simultaneously; however, methods are being developed to overcome these problems. In addition to sclerochronology, molluscs are important to Holocene and Pleistocene estuarine palaeoenvironmental studies because of their use in the development of age models through radiocarbon dating, amino acid racemization, uranium-thorium series dating, and electron spin resonance (ESR) dating.

  4. Quantifying Preferences and Responsiveness of Marine Zooplankton to Changing Environmental Conditions using Microfluidics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nirupama Ramanathan

    Full Text Available Global environmental change significantly affects marine species composition. However, analyzing the impact of these changes on marine zooplankton communities was so far mostly limited to assessing lethal doses through mortality assays and hence did not allow a direct assessment of the preferred conditions, or preferendum. Here, we use a microfluidic device to characterize individual behavior of actively swimming zooplankton, and to quantitatively determine their ecological preferendum. For the annelid zooplankton model Platynereis dumerilii we observe a broader pH preferendum than for the copepod Euterpina acutifrons, and reveal previously unrecognized sub-populations with different pH preferenda. For Platynereis, the minimum concentration difference required to elicit a response (responsiveness is ~1 μM for H+ and ~13.7 mM for NaCl. Furthermore, using laser ablations we show that olfactomedin-expressing sensory cells mediate chemical responsiveness in the Platynereis foregut. Taken together, our microfluidic approach allows precise assessment and functional understanding of environmental perception on planktonic behaviour.

  5. Environmental conditions and prey-switching by a seabird predator impact juvenile salmon survival

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wells, Brian K.; Santora, Jarrod A.; Henderson, Mark J.; Warzybok, Pete; Jahncke, Jaime; Bradley, Russell W.; Huff, David D.; Schroeder, Isaac D.; Nelson, Peter; Field, John C.; Ainley, David G.

    2017-01-01

    Due to spatio-temporal variability of lower trophic-level productivity along the California Current Ecosystem (CCE), predators must be capable of switching prey or foraging areas in response to changes in environmental conditions and available forage. The Gulf of the Farallones in central California represents a biodiversity hotspot and contains the largest common murre (Uria aalge) colonies along the CCE. During spring, one of the West Coast's most important Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) populations out-migrates into the Gulf of the Farallones. We quantify the effect of predation on juvenile Chinook salmon associated with ecosystem-level variability by integrating long-term time series of environmental conditions (upwelling, river discharge), forage species abundance within central CCE, and population size, at-sea distribution, and diet of the common murre. Our results demonstrate common murres typically forage in the vicinity of their offshore breeding sites, but in years in which their primary prey, pelagic young-of-year rockfish (Sebastesspp.), are less available they forage for adult northern anchovies (Engraulis mordax) nearshore. Incidentally, while foraging inshore, common murre consumption of out-migrating juvenile Chinook salmon, which are collocated with northern anchovy, increases and population survival of the salmon is significantly reduced. Results support earlier findings that show timing and strength of upwelling, and the resultant forage fish assemblage, is related to Chinook salmon recruitment variability in the CCE, but we extend those results by demonstrating the significance of top-down impacts associated with these bottom-up dynamics. Our results demonstrate the complexity of ecosystem interactions and impacts between higher trophic-level predators and their prey, complexities necessary to quantify in order to parameterize ecosystem models and evaluate likely outcomes of ecosystem management options.

  6. Adaptations of the Secretome of Candida albicans in Response to Host-Related Environmental Conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klis, Frans M; Brul, Stanley

    2015-12-01

    The wall proteome and the secretome of the fungal pathogen Candida albicans help it to thrive in multiple niches of the human body. Mass spectrometry has allowed researchers to study the dynamics of both subproteomes. Here, we discuss some major responses of the secretome to host-related environmental conditions. Three β-1,3-glucan-modifying enzymes, Mp65, Sun41, and Tos1, are consistently found in large amounts in culture supernatants, suggesting that they are needed for construction and expansion of the cell wall β-1,3-glucan layer and thus correlate with growth and might serve as diagnostic biomarkers. The genes ENG1, CHT3, and SCW11, which encode an endoglucanase, the major chitinase, and a β-1,3-glucan-modifying enzyme, respectively, are periodically expressed and peak in M/G1. The corresponding protein abundances in the medium correlate with the degree of cell separation during single-yeast-cell, pseudohyphal, and hyphal growth. We also discuss the observation that cells treated with fluconazole, or other agents causing cell surface stress, form pseudohyphal aggregates. Fluconazole-treated cells secrete abundant amounts of the transglucosylase Phr1, which is involved in the accumulation of β-1,3-glucan in biofilms, raising the question whether this is a general response to cell surface stress. Other abundant secretome proteins also contribute to biofilm formation, emphasizing the important role of secretome proteins in this mode of growth. Finally, we discuss the relevance of these observations to therapeutic intervention. Together, these data illustrate that C. albicans actively adapts its secretome to environmental conditions, thus promoting its survival in widely divergent niches of the human body. Copyright © 2015 Klis and Brul.

  7. Environmental conditions and prey-switching by a seabird predator impact juvenile salmon survival

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wells, Brian K.; Santora, Jarrod A.; Henderson, Mark J.; Warzybok, Pete; Jahncke, Jaime; Bradley, Russell W.; Huff, David D.; Schroeder, Isaac D.; Nelson, Peter; Field, John C.; Ainley, David G.

    2017-10-01

    Due to spatio-temporal variability of lower trophic-level productivity along the California Current Ecosystem (CCE), predators must be capable of switching prey or foraging areas in response to changes in environmental conditions and available forage. The Gulf of the Farallones in central California represents a biodiversity hotspot and contains the largest common murre (Uria aalge) colonies along the CCE. During spring, one of the West Coast's most important Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) populations out-migrates into the Gulf of the Farallones. We quantify the effect of predation on juvenile Chinook salmon associated with ecosystem-level variability by integrating long-term time series of environmental conditions (upwelling, river discharge), forage species abundance within central CCE, and population size, at-sea distribution, and diet of the common murre. Our results demonstrate common murres typically forage in the vicinity of their offshore breeding sites, but in years in which their primary prey, pelagic young-of-year rockfish (Sebastes spp.), are less available they forage for adult northern anchovies (Engraulis mordax) nearshore. Incidentally, while foraging inshore, common murre consumption of out-migrating juvenile Chinook salmon, which are collocated with northern anchovy, increases and population survival of the salmon is significantly reduced. Results support earlier findings that show timing and strength of upwelling, and the resultant forage fish assemblage, is related to Chinook salmon recruitment variability in the CCE, but we extend those results by demonstrating the significance of top-down impacts associated with these bottom-up dynamics. Our results demonstrate the complexity of ecosystem interactions and impacts between higher trophic-level predators and their prey, complexities necessary to quantify in order to parameterize ecosystem models and evaluate likely outcomes of ecosystem management options.

  8. Dependency of seed dormancy types on embryo traits and environmental conditions in Ribes species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattana, E; Stuppy, W H; Fraser, R; Waller, J; Pritchard, H W

    2014-07-01

    The hypothesis that seed dormancy may be dependent on environmental conditions and seed morphological traits was tested for six Ribes species, across an altitudinal gradient of 1300 m and a longitudinal separation of 120°. Embryo measurements and seed germination experiments were conducted for R. alpinum L., R. hudsonianum Richardson var. petiolare (Douglas) Jancz., R. nevadaense Kellogg, R. roezlii Regel var. cruentum (Greene) Rehder and R. speciosum Pursh, and data taken from the literature for R. multiflorum Kit. ex Schult. ssp. sandalioticum Arrigoni. Germination was compared with seed viability to reveal proportional seed dormancy, which was then correlated to seed/embryo morphological traits and these traits related to the seed provenance environment. The embryos of all the investigated species are linear underdeveloped and all had a morphological component of seed dormancy (MD). Seeds of R. roezlii, R. hudsonianum and R. nevadaense required a temperature and/or hormone pre-treatment in order to germinate, highlighting morphophysiological seed dormancy (MPD). Seed dormancy was found to be strongly negatively correlated with embryo length, but not with embryo to seed (E:S) ratio or seed mass. Initial embryo length was positively related to mean annual temperature. Seed dormancy in the investigated Ribes species could be quantified and predicted by the interaction of embryo traits and environmental conditions. This approach may be helpful in assessing and predicting seed dormancy in the Ribes genus and in other genera and families with underdeveloped embryos. © 2013 German Botanical Society and The Royal Botanical Society of the Netherlands.

  9. Toward an integrated understanding of perceived biodiversity values and environmental conditions in a national park

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Riper, Carena J.; Kyle, Gerard T.; Sherrouse, Ben C.; Bagstad, Kenneth J.; Sutton, Stephen G.

    2016-01-01

    In spatial planning and management of protected areas, increased priority is being given to research that integrates social and ecological data. However, public viewpoints of the benefits provided by ecosystems are not easily quantified and often implicitly folded into natural resource management decisions. Drawing on a spatially explicit participatory mapping exercise and a Social Values for Ecosystem Services (SolVES) analysis tool, the present study empirically examined and integrated social values for ecosystem services and environmental conditions within Channel Islands National Park, California. Specifically, a social value indicator of perceived biodiversity was examined using on-site survey data collected from a sample of people who visited the park. This information was modeled alongside eight environmental conditions including faunal species richness for six taxa, vegetation density, categories of marine and terrestrial land cover, and distance to features relevant for decision-makers. Results showed that biodiversity value points assigned to places by the pooled sample of respondents were widely and unevenly mapped, which reflected the belief that biodiversity was embodied to varying degrees by multiple locations in the park. Models generated for two survey subgroups defined by their self-reported knowledge of the Channels Islands revealed distinct spatial patterns of these perceived values. Specifically, respondents with high knowledge valued large spaces that were publicly inaccessible and unlikely to contain on-ground biodiversity, whereas respondents with low knowledge valued places that were experienced first-hand. Accessibility and infrastructure were also important considerations for anticipating how and where people valued the protected land and seascapes of Channel Islands National Park.

  10. Male-killing endosymbionts: influence of environmental conditions on persistence of host metapopulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hovestadt Thomas

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Male killing endosymbionts manipulate their arthropod host reproduction by only allowing female embryos to develop into infected females and killing all male offspring. Because of the reproductive manipulation, we expect them to have an effect on the evolution of host dispersal rates. In addition, male killing endosymbionts are expected to approach fixation when fitness of infected individuals is larger than that of uninfected ones and when transmission from mother to offspring is nearly perfect. They then vanish as the host population crashes. High observed infection rates and among-population variation in natural systems can consequently not be explained if defense mechanisms are absent and when transmission efficiency is perfect. Results By simulating the host-endosymbiont dynamics in an individual-based metapopulation model we show that male killing endosymbionts increase host dispersal rates. No fitness compensations were built into the model for male killing endosymbionts, but they spread as a group beneficial trait. Host and parasite populations face extinction under panmictic conditions, i.e. conditions that favor the evolution of high dispersal in hosts. On the other hand, deterministic 'curing' (only parasite goes extinct can occur under conditions of low dispersal, e.g. under low environmental stochasticity and high dispersal mortality. However, high and stable infection rates can be maintained in metapopulations over a considerable spectrum of conditions favoring intermediate levels of dispersal in the host. Conclusion Male killing endosymbionts without explicit fitness compensation spread as a group selected trait into a metapopulation. Emergent feedbacks through increased evolutionary stable dispersal rates provide an alternative explanation for both, the high male-killing endosymbiont infection rates and the high among-population variation in local infection rates reported for some natural systems.

  11. The persistence of Salmonella following desiccation under feed processing environmental conditions: a subject of relevance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Habimana, O; Nesse, L L; Møretrø, T; Berg, K; Heir, E; Vestby, L K; Langsrud, S

    2014-11-01

    Although Salmonella persistence has been predominantly linked to biofilm formation, the physiological state of Salmonella should also be considered as a possible pathway for persistence and survival in the feed industry. Hence, the purpose of this study was to assess the extent of viability of Salmonella cells through long-term desiccation periods under conditions typically found in feed processing environments, and whether these same cells could resuscitate and cause salmonellosis in vivo. We showed that upon desiccation, Salmonella Agona, a representative feed industry isolate and Salmonella Typhimurium ATCC 14028, a laboratory strain, were induced into a nonculturable state at 35 and 85% relative humidity conditions, at defined temperatures of 30 and 12°C, respectively. Although the reduction in culturable cells was more than 6 log10 , metabolic activity was found in more than 1% of the population. Desiccation-induced nonculturable Salm. Typhimurium could not be revived and were nonvirulent in a mouse model following infection through oral gavage. These results suggest that the specific conditions for reviving nonculturable Salmonella after long periods of desiccation are yet to be fully identified. The need for mapping key factors involved in the persistence of Salmonella would help better detect it and improve feed safety measures. While Salmonella has been shown to persist for years in feed processing environments, it is still unknown how temperature and humidity affect the persistence of Salmonella cells over time in terms of their metabolic states and cultivability. Here, we show that long-term exposure to feed processing environmental conditions induces Salmonella into a nonculturable state even though about 1% of the population remains metabolically active. This has significant implications when monitoring Salmonella from the environment which could yield false-negative results using conventional pre-enrichment detection methods. © 2014 The Society

  12. Biocontrol agents promote growth of potato pathogens, depending on environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cray, Jonathan A; Connor, Mairéad C; Stevenson, Andrew; Houghton, Jonathan D R; Rangel, Drauzio E N; Cooke, Louise R; Hallsworth, John E

    2016-05-01

    There is a pressing need to understand and optimize biological control so as to avoid over-reliance on the synthetic chemical pesticides that can damage environmental and human health. This study focused on interactions between a novel biocontrol-strain, Bacillus sp. JC12GB43, and potato-pathogenic Phytophthora and Fusarium species. In assays carried out in vitro and on the potato tuber, the bacterium was capable of near-complete inhibition of pathogens. This Bacillus was sufficiently xerotolerant (water activity limit for growth = 0.928) to out-perform Phytophthora infestans (~0.960) and challenge Fusarium coeruleum (~0.847) and Fusarium sambucinum (~0.860) towards the lower limits of their growth windows. Under some conditions, however, strain JC12GB43 stimulated proliferation of the pathogens: for instance, Fusarium coeruleum growth-rate was increased under chaotropic conditions in vitro (132 mM urea) by >100% and on tubers (2-M glycerol) by up to 570%. Culture-based assays involving macromolecule-stabilizing (kosmotropic) compatible solutes provided proof-of-principle that the Bacillus may provide kosmotropic metabolites to the plant pathogen under conditions that destabilize macromolecular systems of the fungal cell. Whilst unprecedented, this finding is consistent with earlier reports that fungi can utilize metabolites derived from bacterial cells. Unless the antimicrobial activities of candidate biocontrol strains are assayed over a full range of field-relevant parameters, biocontrol agents may promote plant pathogen infections and thereby reduce crop yields. These findings indicate that biocontrol activity, therefore, ought to be regarded as a mode-of-behaviour (dependent on prevailing conditions) rather than an inherent property of a bacterial strain. © 2016 The Authors. Microbial Biotechnology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd and Society for Applied Microbiology.

  13. What are extreme environmental conditions and how do organisms cope with them?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John C. WINGFIELD, J. Patrick KELLEY, Frédéric ANGELIER

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Severe environmental conditions affect organisms in two major ways. The environment may be predictably severe such as in deserts, polar and alpine regions, or individuals may be exposed to temporarily extreme conditions through weather, presence of predators, lack of food, social status etc. Existence in an extreme environment may be possible, but then to breed or molt in addition can present major bottlenecks that have resulted in the evolution of hormone-behavior adaptations to cope with unpredictable events. Examples of hormone-behavior adaptations in extreme conditions include attenuated testosterone secretion because territoriality and excess courtship may be too costly when there is one opportunity to reproduce. The individual may even become insensitive to testosterone when target areas of the brain regulating reproductive behavior no longer respond to the hormone. A second example is reduced sensitivity to glucocorticoids following acute stress during the breeding season or molt that allows successful reproduction and/or a vital renewal of the integument to endure extreme conditions during the rest of the year. Reduced sensitivity could involve: (a modulated response of the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal axis, (b reduced sensitivity to high glucocorticoid levels, or (c a combination of (a and (b. Moreover, corticosteroid binding proteins (CBP buffer responses to stress by reducing the movement of glucocorticoids into target cells. Finally, intracellular enzymes (11b-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase and variants can deactivate glucocorticoids entering cells thus reducing interaction with receptors. These mechanisms have important implications for climate change and increasing extremes of weather [Current Zoology 57 (3: 363–374, 2011].

  14. Functional traits of selected mangrove species in Brazil as biological indicators of different environmental conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Arrivabene, Hiulana Pereira [Universidade Federal do Espírito Santo, Centro de Ciências Humanas e Naturais, Departamento de Ciências Biológicas, 29075-910 Vitória, Espírito Santo (Brazil); Souza, Iara [Universidade Federal de São Carlos, Centro de Ciências Biológicas e da Saúde, Departamento de Ciências Fisiológicas, 13565-905 São Carlos (Brazil); Có, Walter Luiz Oliveira [Associação Educational de Vitória, Departamento de Biologia, 29053-360 Vitória (Brazil); Rodella, Roberto Antônio [Universidade Estadual Paulista Júlio de Mesquita Filho, Campus de Botucatu, Instituto de Biociências, Departamento de Botânica, C. Postal 510, 18618-000 Botucatu, São Paulo (Brazil); Wunderlin, Daniel Alberto, E-mail: dwunder@fcq.unc.edu.ar [Instituto de Ciencia y Tecnología de Alimentos Córdoba (ICYTAC), CONICET, Dpto. Qca. Orgánica, Fac. Cs. Químicas, Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Ciudad Universitaria, 5000, Córdoba (Argentina); and others

    2014-04-01

    Ecological studies on phenotypic plasticity illustrate the relevance of this phenomenon in nature. Conditions of biota reflect environmental changes, highlighting the adaptability of resident species that can be used as bioindicators of such changes. We report the morpho-anatomical plasticity of leaves of Avicennia schaueriana Stapf and Leechm. ex Moldenke, Laguncularia racemosa (L.) C.F.Gaertn. and Rhizophora mangle L., evaluated in three estuaries (Vitória bay, Santa Cruz and Itaúnas River; state of Espírito Santo, Brazil), considering five areas of mangrove ecosystems with diverse environmental issues. Two sampling sites are part of the Ecological Station Lameirão Island in Vitória bay, close to a harbor. A third sampling site in Cariacica (Vitória bay) is inside the Vitória harbor and also is influenced by domestic sewage. The fourth studied area (Santa Cruz) is part of Piraquê Mangrove Ecological Reservation, while the fifth (Itaúnas River) is a small mangrove, with sandy sediment and greater photosynthetically active radiation, also not strongly influenced by anthropic activity. Results pointed out the morpho-anatomical plasticity in studied species, showing that A. schaueriana and L. racemosa might be considered the most appropriate bioindicators to indicate different settings and environmental conditions. Particularly, the dry mass per leaf area (LMA) of A. schaueriana was the main biomarker measured. In our study, LMA of A. schaueriana was positively correlated with salinity (Spearman 0.71), Mn content (0.81) and pH (0.82) but negatively correlated with phosphorus content (− 0.63). Thus, the evaluation of modification in LMA of A. schaueriana pointed out changes among five studied sites, suggesting its use to reflect changes in the environment, which could be also useful in the future to evaluate the climate change. - Highlights: • We investigated adaptive modifications in plants in response to differences among three estuaries. • We used

  15. The Formation of Frost and Liquid Brines on Spacecraft Materials at Mars Environmental Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fischer, Erik; Martinez, German; Neamati, Daniel; Renno, Nilton O.

    2017-10-01

    There is evidence that frost formed on the camera calibration target of the Opportunity Rover [1], and that frozen brine splashed on the struts of the Phoenix lander during landing melted, producing droplets of liquid brine [2]. Moreover, there is evidence that tiny amounts of frost might have formed at the MSL landing site, early in the morning during the coldest winter sols [3].The Michigan Mars Environmental Chamber (MMEC) is capable of simulating temperatures ranging from ~90 to 500 K, atmospheric pressures ranging from ~10-3 to 105 Pa, and relative humidity ranging from less than 1% to 100%. The MMEC is also capable of simulating the diurnal and seasonal cycles of the Mars polar, mid-latitudes, and equatorial regions (including Mars Special Regions). Moreover, the MMEC is equipped with instruments to study the formation of frost and liquid brines [4,5].We use the MMEC to study the formation of frost and brine droplets on spacecraft materials. Our laboratory experiments indicate that frost forms on spacecraft materials at Mars environmental conditions. They also indicate that small amounts of liquid brine could form on spacecraft surfaces if salts are present (e.g., deposited with dust aerosols or splashed during landing) when frost forms. These results have important implications for planetary protection.Our main goal is to identify the spacecraft materials on which frost and liquid brines are most likely and least likely to form at the environmental conditions created by a Mars lander. This will improve our understanding of forward contamination so that standards for spacecraft fabrication and operations can be refined in order to minimize planetary contamination.References:[1] Landis, G. A. (2007). Lunar Planet. Sci. Conference 38, 2423.[2] Rennó, N. O., et al. (2009). J. Geophys. Res.: Planets (1991-2012), 114(E1).[3] Martínez, G. M., et al. (2016). Icarus, 280, 93-102.[4] Fischer, E., et al. (2014). Geophys. Res. Lett. 41(13), 4456-4462.[5] Fischer, E

  16. Ten-year variability in fluxes, meteorology, and environmental conditions at a Colorado subalpine forest site

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burns, S. P.; Turnipseed, A.; Bowling, D. R.; Hu, J.; Monson, R. K.

    2009-12-01

    Changing meteorological and environmental conditions affect fluxes; model analysis has shown that environmental variability directly accounts for about half the interannual variability in net ecosystem exchange (NEE) of CO2 whereas the other 50% is due to biotic responses to these changing variables (Richardson et al. 2007). In our study, ten years (1998-2008) of turbulent flux measurements of heat, water vapor, and CO2 at the Niwot Ridge AmeriFlux site (Monson et al. 2002) are examined with respect to meteorological conditions (atmospheric temperature, stability, precipitation, and cloudiness) as well as changes in environmental conditions, such as snow depth and soil moisture. The typical yearly cycle and an estimate of the magnitude of year-to-year variability in the diurnal fluxes and other variables for a high-elevation subalpine forest ecosystem are presented. Wintertime ecosystem respiration has an average 30-min NEE of 0.62 μmol m-2 s-1 with an interannual range between 0.5-1 μmol m-2 s-1. Uptake of CO2 in late summer has an average NEE of -0.71 μmol m-2 s-1 with an interannual range between -0.1 to -1.5 μmol m-2 s-1. Previous studies at the Niwot Ridge AmeriFlux site have described the importance of photosynthetic photon flux density (PPFD) (Monson et al. 2002) and also growing season length (Hu et al. 2009) on NEE. Water isotope ratios analyzed by Hu et al. (2009) have shown that trees at the site primarily rely on water from snowmelt to sustain them throughout the summer; combining this result with the SIPNET model, Hu et al. conclude that there is a limited connection between summer precipitation and the cumulative annual gross primary production (GPP). We have tested this conclusion more explicitly by examining the response of NEE to specific precipitation events and the effect of extended dry periods on the diel cycle of the fluxes, CO2 mole fraction, sap flow, and other meteorological and soil variables. Additionally, we examine the connection

  17. Broad-Scale Environmental Conditions Responsible for Post-Fire Vegetation Dynamics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stuart E. Marsh

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Ecosystem response to disturbance is influenced by environmental conditions at a number of scales. Changes in climate have altered fire regimes across the western United States, and have also likely altered spatio-temporal patterns of post-fire vegetation regeneration. Fire occurrence data and a vegetation index (NDVI derived from the NOAA Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR were used to monitor post-fire vegetation from 1989 to 2007. We first investigated differences in post-fire rates of vegetation regeneration between ecoregions. We then related precipitation, temperature, and elevation records at four temporal scales to rates of post-fire vegetation regeneration to ascertain the influence of climate on post-fire vegetation dynamics. We found that broad-scale climate factors are an important influence on post-fire vegetation regeneration. Most notably, higher rates of post-fire regeneration occurred with warmer minimum temperatures. Increases in precipitation also resulted in higher rates of post-fire vegetation growth. While explanatory power was slight, multiple statistical approaches provided evidence for real ecological drivers of post-fire regeneration that should be investigated further at finer scales. The sensitivity of post-disturbance vegetation dynamics to climatic drivers has important ramifications for the management of ecosystems under changing climatic conditions. Shifts in temperature and precipitation regimes are likely to result in changes in post-disturbance dynamics, which could represent important feedbacks into the global climate system.

  18. Absolute gravity measurements at three sites characterized by different environmental conditions using two portable ballistic gravimeters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greco, Filippo; Biolcati, Emanuele; Pistorio, Antonio; D'Agostino, Giancarlo; Germak, Alessandro; Origlia, Claudio; Del Negro, Ciro

    2015-03-01

    The performances of two absolute gravimeters at three different sites in Italy between 2009 and 2011 is presented. The measurements of the gravity acceleration g were performed using the absolute gravimeters Micro-g LaCoste FG5#238 and the INRiM prototype IMGC-02, which represent the state of the art in ballistic gravimeter technology (relative uncertainty of a few parts in 109). For the comparison, the measured g values were reported at the same height by means of the vertical gravity gradient estimated at each site with relative gravimeters. The consistency and reliability of the gravity observations, as well as the performance and efficiency of the instruments, were assessed by measurements made in sites characterized by different logistics and environmental conditions. Furthermore, the various factors affecting the measurements and their uncertainty were thoroughly investigated. The measurements showed good agreement, with the minimum and maximum differences being 4.0 and 8.3 μGal. The normalized errors are very much lower than 1, ranging between 0.06 and 0.45, confirming the compatibility between the results. This excellent agreement can be attributed to several factors, including the good working order of gravimeters and the correct setup and use of the instruments in different conditions. These results can contribute to the standardization of absolute gravity surveys largely for applications in geophysics, volcanology and other branches of geosciences, allowing achieving a good trade-off between uncertainty and efficiency of gravity measurements.

  19. Impact of sand mining activities on the environmental condition of the Komering river, South Sumatera

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lusiagustin, V.; Kusratmoko, E.

    2017-07-01

    Sand mining activities in the Komering river, South Sumatera, has been existed around a long time and continues to grow along with the increase of development that occurred in the district of East Ogan Komering Ulu (East OKU). The purpose of this study is to examine the impact of sand mining activities to environmental conditions of the Komering river. Field studies have been conducted during the period of April-June 2016 for observing the condition of the river channel, water quality measurement and mining activities. Analysis of the results of field studies combined with GIS and Remote sensing analysis was conducted to measure the impact of mining activities both spatially and temporally. The results showed that the sand mining activities on the Komering river have led not only to the degradation of water quality but also damage of the river channel. In this paper, we also discussed the relationship between the distribution of water quality and channel damage with the mining activities in the spatial perspective.

  20. Calcification intensity in planktonic Foraminifera reflects ambient conditions irrespective of environmental stress

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weinkauf, M. F. G.; Moller, T.; Koch, M. C.; Kučera, M.

    2013-10-01

    Planktonic Foraminifera are important marine calcifiers, and the ongoing change in the oceanic carbon system makes it essential to understand the influence of environmental factors on the biomineralization of their shells. The amount of calcite deposited by planktonic Foraminifera during calcification has been hypothesized to reflect a range of environmental factors. However, it has never been assessed whether their calcification only passively responds to the conditions of the ambient seawater or whether it reflects changes in resource allocation due to physiological stress. To disentangle these two end-member scenarios, an experiment is required where the two processes are separated. A natural analogue to such an experiment occurred during the deposition of the Mediterranean sapropels, where large changes in surface water composition and stratification at the onset of the sapropel deposition were decoupled from local extinctions of planktonic Foraminifera species. We took advantage of this natural experiment and investigated the reaction of calcification intensity, expressed as mean area density (MAD), of four species of planktonic Foraminifera to changing conditions during the onset of Sapropel S5 (126-121 ka) in a sediment core from the Levantine Basin. We observed a significant relationship between MAD and surface water properties, as reflected by stable isotopes in the calcite of Foraminifera shells, but we failed to observe any reaction of calcification intensity on ecological stress during times of decreasing abundance culminating in local extinction. The reaction of calcification intensity to surface water perturbation at the onset of the sapropel was observed only in surface-dwelling species, but all species calcified more strongly prior to the sapropel deposition and less strongly within the sapropel than at similar conditions during the present-day. These results indicate that the high-salinity environment of the glacial Mediterranean Sea prior to

  1. Calcification intensity in planktonic Foraminifera reflects ambient conditions irrespective of environmental stress

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. F. G. Weinkauf

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Planktonic Foraminifera are important marine calcifiers, and the ongoing change in the oceanic carbon system makes it essential to understand the influence of environmental factors on the biomineralization of their shells. The amount of calcite deposited by planktonic Foraminifera during calcification has been hypothesized to reflect a range of environmental factors. However, it has never been assessed whether their calcification only passively responds to the conditions of the ambient seawater or whether it reflects changes in resource allocation due to physiological stress. To disentangle these two end-member scenarios, an experiment is required where the two processes are separated. A natural analogue to such an experiment occurred during the deposition of the Mediterranean sapropels, where large changes in surface water composition and stratification at the onset of the sapropel deposition were decoupled from local extinctions of planktonic Foraminifera species. We took advantage of this natural experiment and investigated the reaction of calcification intensity, expressed as mean area density (MAD, of four species of planktonic Foraminifera to changing conditions during the onset of Sapropel S5 (126–121 ka in a sediment core from the Levantine Basin. We observed a significant relationship between MAD and surface water properties, as reflected by stable isotopes in the calcite of Foraminifera shells, but we failed to observe any reaction of calcification intensity on ecological stress during times of decreasing abundance culminating in local extinction. The reaction of calcification intensity to surface water perturbation at the onset of the sapropel was observed only in surface-dwelling species, but all species calcified more strongly prior to the sapropel deposition and less strongly within the sapropel than at similar conditions during the present-day. These results indicate that the high-salinity environment of the glacial

  2. Influence of environmental conditions on the regenerative capacity and the survivability of Elodea nuttallii fragments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Markus A. Hoffmann

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The presented study was conducted to determine which environmental factors and conditions can affect the regenerative capacity and survivability of Elodea nuttallii [o1] and therefore the efficiency of mechanical management methods like cutting and harvesting. The influence of water temperature, light intensity and nutrient concentration in the sediment on the survivability and regenerative capacity of the invasive species E. nuttallii was determined in three laboratory and one field experiments. E. nuttallii fragments with one to four nodes were stored in aquaria under constant temperature and/or light conditions. To examine the influence of water temperature, four aquaria were kept at a constant water temperature of either 15°C or 20°C. The influence of light intensity was studied by shading the aquaria with different types of mesh. The fragments were stored at constant light intensities of 215, 161, 86 and 31 µmol photons m–2 s–1. Fragments in aquaria filled with sediment with 20 µg P2O5-P g–1 soil, 150 µg P2O5-P g–1 soil or without sediment were studied to determine the influence of the sediment. The results of the laboratory experiments showed how the mechanical management methods are most efficient during periods with low water temperatures, high turbidity or low global irradiation and nutrient poor waters. The field experiment was designed to study the influence of the nutrient compositions in the sediment on the growth and regenerative capacity of rooted E. nuttallii. E. nuttallii fragments were planted in compartments treated with PO43-- and/or NH4+-fertiliser and were trimmed after six weeks. The experiment revealed that the growth before a harvest and the growth after a harvest (regenerative capacity differ significantly, depending on the nutrient composition in the substrate. An increase of the PO43- concentration in the sediment, for example, reduced the growth of E. nuttallii before the harvest, but increased the

  3. Effect of environmental conditions and lesion age on sporulation of Phytophthora ramorum on California bay laurel, rhododendron, and camellia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steve Tjosvold; David Chambers; Sylvia Mori

    2013-01-01

    The objective of our research was to determine the environmental conditions and lesion age favorable for Phytophthora ramorum sporulation under field conditions. For 2 years, new camellia, rhododendron, and California bay laurel (Umbellaria californica (Hook. & Arn.) Nutt.) nursery stock were seasonally inoculated (every 3 months) on foliage....

  4. Energy expenditures & physical activity in rats with chronic suboptimal nutrition

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    Lifshitz Fima

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Sub-optimally nourished rats show reduced growth, biochemical and physiological changes. However, no one has assessed metabolic rate adaptations in rats subjected to chronic suboptimal nutrition (CSN. In this study energy expenditure (EE; kcal/100 g body weight and physical activity (PA; oscillations in weight/min/kg body weight were assessed in rats subjected to three levels of CSN. Results Body weight gain was diminished (76.7 ± 12.0 and 61.6 ± 11.0 g in rats fed 70 and 60% of the ad-libitum fed controls which gained more weight (148.5 ± 32.3 g. The rats fed 80% gained weight similarly to controls (136.3 ± 10.5 g. Percent Fat-free body mass was reduced (143.8 ± 8.7 and 142.0 ± 7.6 g in rats fed 70 and 60% of ad-libitum, but not in those fed 80% (200.8 ± 17.5 g as compared with controls (201.6 ± 33.4 g. Body fat (g decreased in rats fed 80% (19.7 ± 5.3, 70% (15.3 ± 3.5 and 60% (9.6 ± 2.7 of ad-libitum in comparison to controls (26.0 ± 6.7. EE and PA were also altered by CSN. The control rats increased their EE and PA during the dark periods by 1.4 ± 0.8 and 1.7 ± 1.1 respectively, as compared with light the period; whereas CSN rats fed 80 and 70% of ad-libitum energy intake had reduced EE and PA during the dark periods as compared with the light period EE(7.5 ± 1.4 and 7.8 ± 0.6 vs. 9.0 ± 1.2 and 9.7 ± 0.8; p Conclusion CSN rats adapt to mild energy restriction by reducing body fat, EE and PA mainly during the dark period while growth proceeds and lean body mass is preserved. At higher levels of energy restrictions there is decreased growth, body fat and lean mass. Moreover EE and PA are also reduced during both light and dark periods.

  5. Thermal biology of flight in a butterfly: genotype, flight metabolism, and environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattila, Anniina L K

    2015-12-01

    Knowledge of the effects of thermal conditions on animal movement and dispersal is necessary for a mechanistic understanding of the consequences of climate change and habitat fragmentation. In particular, the flight of ectothermic insects such as small butterflies is greatly influenced by ambient temperature. Here, variation in body temperature during flight is investigated in an ecological model species, the Glanville fritillary butterfly (Melitaea cinxia). Attention is paid on the effects of flight metabolism, genotypes at candidate loci, and environmental conditions. Measurements were made under a natural range of conditions using infrared thermal imaging. Heating of flight muscles by flight metabolism has been presumed to be negligible in small butterflies. However, the results demonstrate that Glanville fritillary males with high flight metabolic rate maintain elevated body temperature better during flight than males with a low rate of flight metabolism. This effect is likely to have a significant influence on the dispersal performance and fitness of butterflies and demonstrates the possible importance of intraspecific physiological variation on dispersal in other similar ectothermic insects. The results also suggest that individuals having an advantage in low ambient temperatures can be susceptible to overheating at high temperatures. Further, tolerance of high temperatures may be important for flight performance, as indicated by an association of heat-shock protein (Hsp70) genotype with flight metabolic rate and body temperature at takeoff. The dynamics of body temperature at flight and factors affecting it also differed significantly between female and male butterflies, indicating that thermal dynamics are governed by different mechanisms in the two sexes. This study contributes to knowledge about factors affecting intraspecific variation in dispersal-related thermal performance in butterflies and other insects. Such information is needed for predictive

  6. Correlating bilayer tablet delamination tendencies to micro-environmental thermodynamic conditions during pan coating.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zacour, Brian M; Pandey, Preetanshu; Subramanian, Ganeshkumar; Gao, Julia Z; Nikfar, Faranak

    2014-06-01

    The objective of this study was to determine the impact that the micro-environment, as measured by PyroButton data loggers, experienced by tablets during the pan coating unit operation had on the layer adhesion of bilayer tablets in open storage conditions. A full factorial design of experiments (DOE) with three center points was conducted to study the impact of final tablet hardness, film coating spray rate and film coating exhaust temperature on the delamination tendencies of bilayer tablets. PyroButton data loggers were placed (fixed) at various locations in a pan coater and were also allowed to freely move with the tablet bed to measure the micro-environmental temperature and humidity conditions of the tablet bed. The variance in the measured micro-environment via PyroButton data loggers accounted for 75% of the variance in the delamination tendencies of bilayer tablets on storage (R(2 )= 0.75). A survival analysis suggested that tablet hardness and coating spray rate significantly impacted the delamination tendencies of the bilayer tablets under open storage conditions. The coating exhaust temperature did not show good correlation with the tablets' propensity to crack indicating that it was not representative of the coating micro-environment. Models created using data obtained from the PyroButton data loggers outperformed models created using primary DOE factors in the prediction of bilayer tablet strength, especially upon equipment or scale transfers. The coating micro-environment experienced by tablets during the pan coating unit operation significantly impacts the strength of the bilayer interface of tablets on storage.

  7. Automobile air-conditioning its energy and environmental impact; La climatisation automobile impact energetique et environnemental

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Barbusse, St.; Gagnepain, L.

    2003-05-01

    Over the last three decades, automobile manufacturers have made a lot of progress in specific fuel consumption and engine emissions of pollutants. Yet the impact of these improvements on vehicle consumption has been limited by increased dynamic performances (maxi-mum speed, torque), increased safety (power steering and power brakes) and increased comfort (noise and vibration reduction, electric windows and thermal comfort). Because of this, the real CO{sub 2}-emission levels in vehicles is still high in a context where road transport is a major factor in the balance sheet of greenhouse gas emissions, thus in complying with the inter-national climate convention. Although European, Japanese and Korean manufacturers signed an important agreement with the European Commission for voluntarily reducing CO{sub 2} emissions from their vehicles, with a weighted average emission goal by sales of 140 grams per km on the MVEG approval cycle by 2008, it has to be noted that the European procedures for measuring fuel consumption and CO{sub 2} emissions do not take accessories into account, especially air-condition ng (A/C). The big dissemination of this equipment recognized as a big energy consumer and as using a refrigerant with a high global warming potential ed ADEME to implement a set of assessments of A/C's energy and environmental impact. In particular these assessments include studies of vehicle equipment rates, analyses of impact on fuel consumption as well as regulated pollutant emissions in the exhaust, a characterization of the refrigerant leakage levels and an estimate of greenhouse gas emissions for all air-conditioned vehicles. This leaflet summarizes the results of these actions. All of these studies and additional data are presented in greater detail in the document,-'Automobile Air-conditioning' (ADEME reference no. 4985). (author)

  8. Environmental conditions and soils of natural oases in the Alashan Gobi Desert, Mongolia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pankova, E. I.

    2008-08-01

    Environmental conditions and soils of nine natural oases in the Alashan Gobi Desert of Mongolia are characterized. All these oases are allocated to the zones of tectonic faults, where the discharge of slightly saline groundwater takes place. The absolute heights are about 1500 m a.s.l. The oases are found on piedmont plains or in hilly areas occupied by true deserts with fragments of extremely arid deserts. With respect to geomorphological conditions, four types of oases can be distinguished: isolated (isle-type) oases, oases in large mesodepressions, oases formed in naturally ponded areas, and oases within terraced valleys. Each of these types is characterized by specific soil cover patterns controlled by the geomorphological features of the territory, the character of parent materials, and the groundwater depth. At the same time, some common soil properties are typical of all the oases. Hydromorphic soils—peat meadow-swampy soils, dark-colored nonsaline meadow soils, oasis solonchaks that developed in areas with shallow nonsaline groundwater, solonchaks with different degrees of hydromorphism that developed from mottled-colored salt-bearing Cretaceous and Paleogene deposits, and soddy alluvial (floodplain) soils—predominate in the central parts of the oases. Under conditions of deep groundwater, takyric and sandy desert soils are formed. The oases are encircled by desert ecosystems with gray-brown desert and extremely arid soils and with poorly developed stony soils that formed on the low residual mounts. In the period of the study (1991), irrigated farming was only developed within one of the studied oases. The main part of the land was used for pasturing. In some cases, the high grazing pressure led to degradation (desertification) of oasis ecosystems. A comparison of the oases studied in the Alashan Gobi with the Ekhiin-Gol oasis in the Transaltai Gobi attests to the similarity of their nature.

  9. Deterioration pattern of six biodegradable, potentially low-environmental impact mulches in field conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreno, Marta M; González-Mora, Sara; Villena, Jaime; Campos, Juan A; Moreno, Carmen

    2017-09-15

    Polyethylene plastic mulches are widely used in agriculture due to the countless advantages they have. However, the environmental problems associated with their use have led us to look for alternative mulch materials which degrade naturally and quickly, impact the environment less and function satisfactorily. To this end, biodegradable plastics and paper mulches are being used, but aspects related to their degradation should be studied more in-depth. This work provides the deterioration pattern of six biodegradable mulch materials (i.e. vegetable starch, polylactic acid plastic films or paper mulches) in horticultural crop in the edaphoclimatic conditions of Central Spain in two situations: over the lifetime of the mulches and after being incorporated into the soil. In the first situation, the deterioration levels were evaluated by recording the puncture resistance, weight and area covered in the above-soil and the in-soil part, and after soil incorporation by the number of fragments, their surfaces and weight. In the above-soil part, biodegradable plastics experienced further deterioration, particularly with no crop, while the paper mulch remained practically intact. However, the in-soil paper experienced complete and rapid degradation. At 200 days after soil incorporation, mulch residues were scarce, with the environmental effects it entails. These findings offer practical implications regarding the type of crop. The measurement of the surface covered, rather than the weight, was shown to be a more reliable indicator of the degradation of mulches. Furthermore, visual estimation was found to underestimate the functionality of mulches in comparison to that of the measurement of the surface covered. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Treatment of KPC-producing Enterobacteriaceae: suboptimal efficacy of polymyxins.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Oliveira, M S; de Assis, D B; Freire, M P; Boas do Prado, G V; Machado, A S; Abdala, E; Pierrotti, L C; Mangini, C; Campos, L; Caiaffa Filho, H H; Levin, A S

    2015-02-01

    Treatment of Klebsiella pneumoniae carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae infections (KPC-EI) remains a challenge. Combined therapy has been proposed as the best choice, but there are no clear data showing which combination therapy is superior. Our aim was to evaluate the effectiveness of antimicrobial regimens for treating KPC-EI. This was a retrospective cohort study of KPC-EI nosocomial infections (based on CDC criteria) between October 2009 and June 2013 at three tertiary Brazilian hospitals. The primary outcomes were the 30-day mortality for all infections and the 30-day mortality for patients with bacteraemia. Risk factors for mortality were evaluated by comparing clinical variables of survivors and nonsurvivors. In this study, 118 patients were included, of whom 78 had bacteraemia. Catheter-related bloodstream infections were the most frequent (43%), followed by urinary tract infections (n = 27, 23%). Monotherapy was used in 57 patients and combined treatment in 61 patients. The most common therapeutic combination was polymyxin plus carbapenem 20 (33%). Multivariate analysis for all infections (n = 118) and for bacteremic infections (n = 78) revealed that renal failure at the end of treatment, use of polymyxin and older age were prognostic factors for mortality. In conclusion, polymyxins showed suboptimal efficacy and combination therapy was not superior to monotherapy. Copyright © 2014 European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Robust Adaptive LCMV Beamformer Based On An Iterative Suboptimal Solution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiansheng Guo

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The main drawback of closed-form solution of linearly constrained minimum variance (CF-LCMV beamformer is the dilemma of acquiring long observation time for stable covariance matrix estimates and short observation time to track dynamic behavior of targets, leading to poor performance including low signal-noise-ratio (SNR, low jammer-to-noise ratios (JNRs and small number of snapshots. Additionally, CF-LCMV suffers from heavy computational burden which mainly comes from two matrix inverse operations for computing the optimal weight vector. In this paper, we derive a low-complexity Robust Adaptive LCMV beamformer based on an Iterative Suboptimal solution (RAIS-LCMV using conjugate gradient (CG optimization method. The merit of our proposed method is threefold. Firstly, RAIS-LCMV beamformer can reduce the complexity of CF-LCMV remarkably. Secondly, RAIS-LCMV beamformer can adjust output adaptively based on measurement and its convergence speed is comparable. Finally, RAIS-LCMV algorithm has robust performance against low SNR, JNRs, and small number of snapshots. Simulation results demonstrate the superiority of our proposed algorithms.

  12. Predictors of Suboptimal Follow-up in Pediatric Cancer Survivors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    May, Leana; Schwartz, David D; Frugé, Ernest; Laufman, Larry; Holm, Suzanne; Kamdar, Kala; Harris, Lynnette; Brackett, Julienne; Unal, Sule; Tanyildiz, Gulsah; Bryant, Rosalind; Suzawa, Hilary; Dreyer, Zoann; Okcu, M Fatih

    2017-04-01

    Attendance to follow-up care after completion of cancer treatment is an understudied area. We examined demographic, clinical, and socioeconomic predictors of follow-up by pediatric cancer patients at a large center in 442 newly diagnosed patients using multivariable logistic regression analyses. Patients who did not return to clinic for at least 1000 days were considered lost to follow-up. Two hundred forty-two (54.8%) patients were lost. In multivariable analyses, the following variables were independent predictors of being lost to follow-up: treatment with surgery alone (odds ratio [OR]=6.7; 95% confidence interval [CI], 3.1-14.9), older age at diagnosis (reference, 0 to 4; ages, 5 to 9: OR=1.8, 95% CI, 1.1-3; ages, 10 to 14: OR=3.3; CI, 1.8-6.1; and ages, 15 and above: OR=4.8; CI, 2.1-11.7), lack of history of stem cell transplantation (OR=2, 95% CI, 1.04-3.7) and lack of insurance (OR=3.4; CI, 1.2-9.2). Hispanic patients had the best follow-up rates (53.7%) compared to whites and blacks (P=0.03). Attendance to long-term follow-up care is suboptimal in childhood cancer survivors. Predictors that were associated with nonattendance can be used to design targeted interventions to improve follow-up care for survivors of pediatric cancer.

  13. Adaptive suboptimal second-order sliding mode control for microgrids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Incremona, Gian Paolo; Cucuzzella, Michele; Ferrara, Antonella

    2016-09-01

    This paper deals with the design of adaptive suboptimal second-order sliding mode (ASSOSM) control laws for grid-connected microgrids. Due to the presence of the inverter, of unpredicted load changes, of switching among different renewable energy sources, and of electrical parameters variations, the microgrid model is usually affected by uncertain terms which are bounded, but with unknown upper bounds. To theoretically frame the control problem, the class of second-order systems in Brunovsky canonical form, characterised by the presence of matched uncertain terms with unknown bounds, is first considered. Four adaptive strategies are designed, analysed and compared to select the most effective ones to be applied to the microgrid case study. In the first two strategies, the control amplitude is continuously adjusted, so as to arrive at dominating the effect of the uncertainty on the controlled system. When a suitable control amplitude is attained, the origin of the state space of the auxiliary system becomes attractive. In the other two strategies, a suitable blend between two components, one mainly working during the reaching phase, the other being the predominant one in a vicinity of the sliding manifold, is generated, so as to reduce the control amplitude in steady state. The microgrid system in a grid-connected operation mode, controlled via the selected ASSOSM control strategies, exhibits appreciable stability properties, as proved theoretically and shown in simulation.

  14. Climatic and environmental conditions favoring the crossing of the Carpathians by early Neolithic populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perşoiu, Ioana; Perşoiu, Aurel

    2015-04-01

    The study of the origin and spread of Neolithic has been the subject of heated debate since the early studies of Childe (1942). To what extent the dispersal process was influenced by environmental factors is still debated, one of the issues being whether climatic conditions influencing agricultural practices, could have influenced the dispersal route, "blocking" some of the Neolithic societies in front of ecological barriers. Data from Neolithic sites in SE Europe shows that a continuous stream of people and cultures flowed through the Danube's Iron Gates towards Central Europe, while in the eastern part of Europe this process was delayed, people and cultures "moving" around the Carpathians and crossing them with a delay of ca. 1000 years. One of the possible avenues for this crossing is the floodplain of Someşu Mic River (Transylvanian depression), home to the oldest (~8500 cal. BP) Neolithic settlement in Romania. In this paper, we review the climatic and environmental changes that affected the region at the time of Neolithic dispersal. Pollen and stable isotopes in cave ice indicate an early Holocene rapid warming during summer months, peaking around 7 ka cal. BP; and a delayed warming for autumn and winter months, peaking at 5 ka cal. BP, both followed by a continuous cooling trend towards the present. Someşu Mic River developed and maintained a narrow sinuous channel during the Holocene, with local development of meanders and anabranches, in response to both climatic and geologic controlling factors. Archaeological finds in the floodplain and the lower terraces suggest that human societies in the region responded in sensitive manner to these climatic and environmental changes. During warm and dry periods, with low fluvial activity, the number of settlements increased in the floodplain's perimeter, while during the short cold and humid periods, the number of settlements rapidly increased on the lower terraces and on the valley slopes, disappearing from the

  15. Voluntary agreements as a way to stimulate industrial environmental management and their conditions for success

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bressers, Johannes T.A.; de Bruijn, Theo; Franco Garcia, Maria Maria; Lulofs, Kristiaan R.D.; Xue, Yifei; Xue, Yanyan

    2013-01-01

    Numerous governments have adopted innovative policy instruments to deal with important environmental policy challenges. Various forms of negotiated instruments may offer the potential to improve on environmental performance beyond what regulation alone can accomplish. Dutch covenants, which

  16. The influence of environmental conditions on kinetics of arsenite oxidation by manganese-oxides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fischel, Matthew H H; Fischel, Jason S; Lafferty, Brandon J; Sparks, Donald L

    2015-01-01

    Manganese-oxides are one of the most important minerals in soil due to their widespread distribution and high reactivity. Despite their invaluable role in cycling many redox sensitive elements, numerous unknowns remain about the reactivity of different manganese-oxide minerals under varying conditions in natural systems. By altering temperature, pH, and concentration of arsenite we were able to determine how manganese-oxide reactivity changes with simulated environmental conditions. The interaction between manganese-oxides and arsenic is particularly important because manganese can oxidize mobile and toxic arsenite into more easily sorbed and less toxic arsenate. This redox reaction is essential in understanding how to address the global issue of arsenic contamination in drinking water. The reactivity of manganese-oxides in ascending order is random stacked birnessite, hexagonal birnessite, biogenic manganese-oxide, acid birnessite, and δ-MnO2. Increasing temperature raised the rate of oxidation. pH had a variable effect on the production of arsenate and mainly impacted the sorption of arsenate on δ-MnO2, which decreased with increasing pH. Acid birnessite oxidized the most arsenic at alkaline and acidic pHs, with decreased reactivity towards neutral pH. The δ-MnO2 showed a decline in reactivity with increasing arsenite concentration, while the acid birnessite had greater oxidation capacity under higher concentrations of arsenite. The batch reactions used in this study quantify the impact of environmental variances on different manganese-oxides' reactivity and provide insight to their roles in governing chemical cycles in the Critical Zone. The reactivity of manganese-oxides investigated was closely linked to each mineral's crystallinity, surface area, and presence of vacancy sites. δ-MnO2 and acid birnessite are thought to be synthetic representatives of naturally occurring biogenic manganese-oxides; however, the biogenic manganese-oxide exhibited a lag time

  17. Exertional Heat Illnesses and Environmental Conditions During High School Football Practices.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tripp, Brady L; Eberman, Lindsey E; Smith, Michael Seth

    2015-10-01

    Guidelines for preventing exertional heat illnesses (EHIs) during extreme heat stress should be specific to regional environments, age, and sport and should be based on evidence of reducing the risk. Each year in the United States, over 1 million high school football players practice in the August heat; however, no published data describe the incidence of EHIs in these athletes. To describe the environmental conditions and incidence of EHIs during high school football practices over a 3-month period. Descriptive epidemiology study. For a 3-month period (August-October), athletic trainers at 12 high schools in North Central Florida recorded the practice time and length, environmental conditions (wet-bulb globe temperature), and incidences of EHIs in varsity football athletes. Athletes suffered 57 total EHIs during 29,759 athlete-exposures (AEs) for the 3-month data collection period (rate = 1.92/1000 AEs). August accounted for the majority of all EHIs, with 82.5% (47/57) and the highest rate (4.35/1000 AEs). Of total heat illnesses, heat cramps accounted for 70.2% (40/57), heat exhaustion 22.8% (13/57), and heat syncope 7.0% (4/57). The odds ratio indicated that athletes in August practices that lasted longer than the recommended 3 hours were 9.84 times more likely to suffer a heat illness than those in practices lasting ≤3 hours. The highest rate of EHIs was during August. Practices in August that exceeded the recommended 3 hours were associated with a greater risk of heat illnesses. The overall rate of EHIs was lower for the high school football athletes observed in the study compared with that reported for collegiate football athletes in the region. The low rates of EHIs recorded suggest that the prevention guidelines employed by sports medicine teams are appropriate for the region and population. Team physicians and athletic trainers should employ evidence-based, region- and population-specific EHI prevention guidelines. Sports medicine teams, coaches, and

  18. Genetic background and environmental conditions drive metabolic variation in wild type and transgenic soybean (Glycine max) seeds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, Hagai; Shir, Ofer M; Yu, Yang; Hou, Wensheng; Sun, Shi; Han, Tianfu; Amir, Rachel

    2016-08-01

    The metabolic profiles and composition of storage reserves of agricultural crop seeds are strongly regulated by heritable and environmental factors. Yet, very little is known about the genetic and environmental determinants of adaptive metabolic variation amongst wild type as well as transgenic seed populations derived from the same genetic background, grown under natural field conditions. The goal of the current study was to investigate the effects of natural environmental conditions on wild type and transgenic soybean seeds expressing a feedback-insensitive form of cystathionine γ-synthase, a methionine main regulatory enzyme. The seeds were grown in four geographically distinct habitats in China and then assayed for primary metabolic profiles using gas chromatography mass spectrometry, morphological traits and storage reserve accumulation. The analyses revealed changes in the levels of primary metabolites which evidently exhibited high correlation to methionine regardless of changes in environmental conditions. The environment, however, constituted a major determinant of metabolic profiles amongst seeds, as much more metabolites were observed to be affected by this variable, particularly along the north-to-south latitudinal gradient. The observations suggest that metabolic variation amongst seeds grown under natural field conditions depends upon the complex relationships existing amongst their genetic background and the environmental conditions characterizing their cultivation areas. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  19. Environmental Conditions Affect Exhalation of H3N2 Seasonal and Variant Influenza Viruses and Respiratory Droplet Transmission in Ferrets.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kortney M Gustin

    Full Text Available The seasonality of influenza virus infections in temperate climates and the role of environmental conditions like temperature and humidity in the transmission of influenza virus through the air are not well understood. Using ferrets housed at four different environmental conditions, we evaluated the respiratory droplet transmission of two influenza viruses (a seasonal H3N2 virus and an H3N2 variant virus, the etiologic virus of a swine to human summertime infection and concurrently characterized the aerosol shedding profiles of infected animals. Comparisons were made among the different temperature and humidity conditions and between the two viruses to determine if the H3N2 variant virus exhibited enhanced capabilities that may have contributed to the infections occurring in the summer. We report here that although increased levels of H3N2 variant virus were found in ferret nasal wash and exhaled aerosol samples compared to the seasonal H3N2 virus, enhanced respiratory droplet transmission was not observed under any of the environmental settings. However, overall environmental conditions were shown to modulate the frequency of influenza virus transmission through the air. Transmission occurred most frequently at 23°C/30%RH, while the levels of infectious virus in aerosols exhaled by infected ferrets agree with these results. Improving our understanding of how environmental conditions affect influenza virus infectivity and transmission may reveal ways to better protect the public against influenza virus infections.

  20. Biological responses of the marine diatom Chaetoceros socialis to changing environmental conditions: A laboratory experiment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xuefeng; Roevros, Nathalie; Dehairs, Frank; Chou, Lei

    2017-01-01

    Diatoms constitute a major group of phytoplankton, accounting for ~20% of the world's primary production. It has been shown that iron (Fe) can be the limiting factor for phytoplankton growth, in particular, in the HNLC (High Nutrient Low Chlorophyll) regions. Iron plays thus an essential role in governing the marine primary productivity and the efficiency of biological carbon pump. Oceanic systems are undergoing continuous modifications at varying rates and magnitudes as a result of changing climate. The objective of our research is to evaluate how changing environmental conditions (dust deposition, ocean warming and acidification) can affect marine Fe biogeochemistry and diatom growth. Laboratory culture experiments using a marine diatom Chaetoceros socialis were conducted at two temperatures (13°C and 18°C) and under two pCO2 (carbon dioxide partial pressure) (400 μatm and 800 μatm) conditions. The present study clearly highlights the effect of ocean acidification on enhancing the release of Fe upon dust deposition. Our results also confirm that being a potential source of Fe, dust provides in addition a readily utilizable source of macronutrients such as dissolved phosphate (PO4) and silicate (DSi). However, elevated atmospheric CO2 concentrations may also have an adverse impact on diatom growth, causing a decrease in cell size and possible further changes in phytoplankton composition. Meanwhile, ocean warming may lead to the reduction of diatom production and cell size, inducing poleward shifts in the biogeographic distribution of diatoms. The changing climate has thus a significant implication for ocean phytoplankton growth, cell size and primary productivity, phytoplankton distribution and community composition, and carbon (C), nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), silicon (Si) and Fe biogeochemical cycles in various ways.

  1. Biological responses of the marine diatom Chaetoceros socialis to changing environmental conditions: A laboratory experiment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xuefeng Li

    Full Text Available Diatoms constitute a major group of phytoplankton, accounting for ~20% of the world's primary production. It has been shown that iron (Fe can be the limiting factor for phytoplankton growth, in particular, in the HNLC (High Nutrient Low Chlorophyll regions. Iron plays thus an essential role in governing the marine primary productivity and the efficiency of biological carbon pump. Oceanic systems are undergoing continuous modifications at varying rates and magnitudes as a result of changing climate. The objective of our research is to evaluate how changing environmental conditions (dust deposition, ocean warming and acidification can affect marine Fe biogeochemistry and diatom growth. Laboratory culture experiments using a marine diatom Chaetoceros socialis were conducted at two temperatures (13°C and 18°C and under two pCO2 (carbon dioxide partial pressure (400 μatm and 800 μatm conditions. The present study clearly highlights the effect of ocean acidification on enhancing the release of Fe upon dust deposition. Our results also confirm that being a potential source of Fe, dust provides in addition a readily utilizable source of macronutrients such as dissolved phosphate (PO4 and silicate (DSi. However, elevated atmospheric CO2 concentrations may also have an adverse impact on diatom growth, causing a decrease in cell size and possible further changes in phytoplankton composition. Meanwhile, ocean warming may lead to the reduction of diatom production and cell size, inducing poleward shifts in the biogeographic distribution of diatoms. The changing climate has thus a significant implication for ocean phytoplankton growth, cell size and primary productivity, phytoplankton distribution and community composition, and carbon (C, nitrogen (N, phosphorus (P, silicon (Si and Fe biogeochemical cycles in various ways.

  2. Microbial diversity during cellulose decomposition in different forest stands: I. microbial communities and environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kubartová, Ariana; Moukoumi, Judicaël; Béguiristain, Thierry; Ranger, Jacques; Berthelin, Jacques

    2007-10-01

    We studied the effect of forest tree species on a community of decomposers that colonize cellulose strips. Both fungal and bacterial communities were targeted in a native forest dominated by beech and oak and 30-year-old beech and spruce plantations, growing in similar ecological conditions in the Breuil-Chenue experimental forest site in Morvan (France). Microbial ingrowths from the 3rd to 10th month of strip decomposition (May to December 2004) were studied. Community composition was assessed using temperature gradient gel electrophoresis with universal fungal (ITS1F, ITS2) and bacterial (1401r, 968f) primers. Soil temperature and moisture as well as fungal biomass were also measured to give additional information on decomposition processes. Changing the dominant tree species had no significant influence in the number of decomposer species. However, decomposer community composition was clearly different. If compared to the native forest, where community composition highly differed, young monocultures displayed similar species structure for fungi and bacteria. Both species numbers and community composition evolved during the decay process. Time effect was found to be more important than tree species. Nevertheless, the actual environmental conditions and seasonal effect seemed to be even more determining factors for the development of microbial communities. The course and correlations of the explored variables often differed between tree species, although certain general trends were identified. Fungal biomass was high in summer, despite that species richness (SR) decreased and conversely, that high SR did not necessarily mean high biomass values. It can be concluded that the growth and development of the microbiological communities that colonized a model material in situ depended on the combination of physical and biological factors acting collectively and interdependently at the forest soil microsite.

  3. Simulation of the environmental climate conditions on martian surface and its effect on Deinococcus radiodurans

    Science.gov (United States)

    de la Vega, U. Pogoda; Rettberg, P.; Reitz, G.

    The resistance of terrestrial microorganisms under the thermo-physical conditions of Mars (diurnal temperature variations, UV climate, atmospheric pressure and gas composition) at mid-latitudes was studied for the understanding and assessment of potential life processes on Mars. In order to accomplish a targeted search for life on other planets, e.g. Mars, it is necessary to know the limiting physical and chemical parameters of terrestrial life. Therefore the polyextremophile bacterium Deinococcus radiodurans was chosen as test organism for these investigations. For the simulation studies at the Planetary and Space Simulation Facilities (PSI) at DLR, Cologne, Germany, conditions that are present during the southern summer at latitude of 60° on Mars were applied. We could simulate several environmental parameters of Mars in one single experiment: vacuum/low pressure, anoxic atmosphere and diurnal cycles in temperature and relative humidity, energy-rich ultraviolet (UV) radiation as well as shielding by different martian soil analogue materials. These parameters have been applied both single and in different combinations in laboratory experiments. Astonishingly the diurnal Mars-like cycles in temperature and relative humidity affected the viability of D. radiodurans cells quite severely. But the martian UV climate turned out to be the most deleterious factor, though D. radiodurans is red-pigmented due to carotenoids incorporated in its cell wall, which have been assigned not only a possible role as free radical scavenger but also as a UV-protectant. An additional UV-protection was accomplished by mixing the bacteria with nano-sized hematite.

  4. Release behavior of uranium in uranium mill tailings under environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Bo; Peng, Tongjiang; Sun, Hongjuan; Yue, Huanjuan

    2017-05-01

    Uranium contamination is observed in sedimentary geochemical environments, but the geochemical and mineralogical processes that control uranium release from sediment are not fully appreciated. Identification of how sediments and water influence the release and migration of uranium is critical to improve the prevention of uranium contamination in soil and groundwater. To understand the process of uranium release and migration from uranium mill tailings under water chemistry conditions, uranium mill tailing samples from northwest China were investigated with batch leaching experiments. Results showed that water played an important role in uranium release from the tailing minerals. The uranium release was clearly influenced by contact time, liquid-solid ratio, particle size, and pH under water chemistry conditions. Longer contact time, higher liquid content, and extreme pH were all not conducive to the stabilization of uranium and accelerated the uranium release from the tailing mineral to the solution. The values of pH were found to significantly influence the extent and mechanisms of uranium release from minerals to water. Uranium release was monitored by a number of interactive processes, including dissolution of uranium-bearing minerals, uranium desorption from mineral surfaces, and formation of aqueous uranium complexes. Considering the impact of contact time, liquid-solid ratio, particle size, and pH on uranium release from uranium mill tailings, reducing the water content, decreasing the porosity of tailing dumps and controlling the pH of tailings were the key factors for prevention and management of environmental pollution in areas near uranium mines. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Innovative monitoring campaign of the environmental conditions of the Stibbert museum in Florence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angelini, E.; Civita, F.; Corbellini, S.; Fulginiti, D.; Giovagnoli, A.; Grassini, S.; Parvis, M.

    2016-02-01

    Conservation of ancient metallic artefact displayed inside museums is a complex problem due to the large number of constraints mainly related to the artefacts fruition by people. The development of a simple procedure for monitoring the artefact conservation state promptly highlighting risky conditions without impacting on the normal museum operations could be of interest in the cultural heritage world. This paper describes the interesting results obtained by using a highly sensitive and innovative methodology for evaluating the safety level of the museum indoor areas, and more specifically of the interior of the showcases, with respect to the metallic artefacts. The methodology is based on the use of an innovative smart sensors network and of copper reference samples. The smart sensors network was employed for the continuous monitoring of temperature and relative humidity close to the artefacts, i.e. inside the display showcases. The reference specimens were Cu coated with a 100 nm Cu nanostructured layer put for 1 year in the exhibition rooms inside and outside the showcases and characterised by means of normal imaging, colorimetric and FESEM techniques at regular intervals. The results of the monitoring activity evidenced the higher reactivity to the environmental aggressivity of the nanocoated copper specimen with respect to bulk artefacts and therefore the possibility to use them as alerts to possible corrosion phenomena that may occur to the real artefacts. A proper temperature and relative humidity monitoring inside the showcases and close to each group of artefacts is a powerful though economic and non-invasive way to highlight most of the possible critical display conditions.

  6. Evaluation of Environmental Impact of Biodiesel Vehicles in Real Traffic Conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sato, Susumu; Mizushima, Norifumi [National Traffic Safety and Environment Laboratory (NTSEL) (Japan); Saito, Akira; Takada, Yutaka [Organization for the Promotion of Low Emission Vehicles (LEVO)(Japan

    2012-01-15

    This report focuses on the comparison of the real-world emissions between the case of using diesel oil and BDF (biodiesel fuel) for fuel. For this purpose, the on-road driving tests were made, by applying BDF, with the latest diesel vehicles complying with the latest emission regulations while avoiding any particular modification to them. For measurement, a PEMS (Portable Emission Measurement System) was used. Note that the heavy diesel vehicles complying with the latest emission gas regulations of Japan also meet the heavy vehicle fuel economy regulations introduced by Japan ahead of other countries of the world. Since application of BDF presents problems not only for the emission gas, but also has non-negligible influence on the fuel economy, the survey was also made for the real-world fuel economy. This report has been produced as the final version deliverable from the International Energy Agency’s (IEA’s) Advanced Motor Fuels (AMF) Implementing Agreement (Annex XXXVIII - Evaluation of Environmental Impact of Biodiesel Vehicle in Real Traffic Conditions).

  7. Yield and quality attributes of faba bean inbred lines grown under marginal environmental conditions of Sudan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gasim, Seif; Hamad, Solafa A A; Abdelmula, Awadalla; Mohamed Ahmed, Isam A

    2015-11-01

    Faba beans (Vicia faba L.) represent an essential source of food protein for many people in Sudan, especially those who cannot afford to buy animal meat. The demand for faba bean seeds is greatly increased in recent years, and consequently its production area was extended southward where the climate is marginally suitable. Therefore, this study was aimed to evaluate seed yield and nutritional quality of five faba bean inbred lines grown under marginal environmental conditions of Sudan. The inbred lines have considerable (P ≤ 0.05) variability in yield and yield components, and seed chemical composition. The mean carbohydrate content was very high (501.1 g kg(-1)) and negatively correlated with seed yield, whereas the average protein content was relatively high (253.1 g kg(-1)) and positively correlated with seed yield. Globulin was the significant fraction (613.5 g kg(-1)protein) followed by albumin (200.2 g kg(-1)protein). Biplot analysis indicates that inbred lines Hudeiba/93-S5 and Ed-damar-S5 outscore other lines in terms of seed yield and nutritional quality. This study demonstrates that Hudeiba/93-S5 and Ed-damar-S5 are useful candidates in faba bean breeding program to terminate the protein deficiency malnutrition and provide healthy and nutritious meal for people living in subtropical areas.

  8. A design proposal of real-time monitoring stations: implementation and performance in contrasting environmental conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jose González

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available With the aim of creating a real-time monitoring network for both oceanographic and meteorological data, a monitoring station conceptual design was developed. A common framework for software and electronics was adapted to different environmental conditions using two buoy approaches: one intended for oceanic waters, to be moored up to 30-40 m depth, where waves are the critical design factor, and one for continental waters (rivers, lakes and the inner part of estuaries, where currents are the critical design factor. When structures such as bridges are present in the area, the monitoring station can be installed on these structures, thus reducing its impact and increasing safety. In this paper, the design, implementation, operation and performance of these stations are described. A reliability index is calculated for the longest time series of the three related deployment options on the Galician coast: Cíes (oceanic buoy in front of the Ría de Vigo, Catoira (continental buoy in the Ulla river and Cortegada (installation in a bed in the Ría de Arousa.

  9. Biofilm formation by Streptococcus agalactiae: influence of environmental conditions and implicated virulence factors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Imma eMargarit

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Streptococcus agalactiae (Group B Streptococcus, GBS is an important human pathogen that colonizes the urogenital and/or the lower gastro-intestinal tract of up to 40% of healthy women of reproductive age and is a leading cause of sepsis and meningitis in the neonates. GBS can also infect the elderly and immuno-compromised adults, and is responsible for mastitis in bovines. Like other Gram-positive bacteria, GBS can form biofilm-like three-dimensional structures that could enhance its ability to colonize and persist in the host. Biofilm formation by GBS has been investigated in vitro and appears tightly controlled by environmental conditions. Several adhesins have been shown to play a role in the formation of GBS biofilm-like structures, among which are the protein components of pili protruding outside the bacterial surface. Remarkably, antibodies directed against pilus proteins can prevent the formation of biofilms. The implications of biofilm formation in the context of GBS asymptomatic colonization and dissemination to cause invasive disease remain to be investigated in detail.

  10. Modeling Time-Dependent Behavior of Concrete Affected by Alkali Silica Reaction in Variable Environmental Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alnaggar, Mohammed; Di Luzio, Giovanni; Cusatis, Gianluca

    2017-01-01

    Alkali Silica Reaction (ASR) is known to be a serious problem for concrete worldwide, especially in high humidity and high temperature regions. ASR is a slow process that develops over years to decades and it is influenced by changes in environmental and loading conditions of the structure. The problem becomes even more complicated if one recognizes that other phenomena like creep and shrinkage are coupled with ASR. This results in synergistic mechanisms that can not be easily understood without a comprehensive computational model. In this paper, coupling between creep, shrinkage and ASR is modeled within the Lattice Discrete Particle Model (LDPM) framework. In order to achieve this, a multi-physics formulation is used to compute the evolution of temperature, humidity, cement hydration, and ASR in both space and time, which is then used within physics-based formulations of cracking, creep and shrinkage. The overall model is calibrated and validated on the basis of experimental data available in the literature. Results show that even during free expansions (zero macroscopic stress), a significant degree of coupling exists because ASR induced expansions are relaxed by meso-scale creep driven by self-equilibriated stresses at the meso-scale. This explains and highlights the importance of considering ASR and other time dependent aging and deterioration phenomena at an appropriate length scale in coupled modeling approaches. PMID:28772829

  11. Developing the Framework for an Early Warning System for Ebola based on Environmental Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dartevelle, Sebastien; Nguy-Robertson, Anthony; Bell, Jesse; Chretien, Jean-Paul

    2017-04-01

    The 2014-2016 Ebola outbreak in West Africa indicated that this lethal disease can become a National Security issue as it crossed boarders and taxed regional health care systems. Ebola symptoms are also similar to other endemic diseases. Thus, forewarning of its possible presence can alert local public health facilities and populations, and may thereby reduce response time. Early work by our group has identified local climate (e.g. temperature, precipitation) and vegetation health (e.g. remote sensing using normalized difference vegetation index, NDVI) variables as leading indicators to known historical Ebola outbreaks. The environmental stress placed on the system as it reaches a climatic tipping point provides optimal conditions for spillover of Ebola virus from the reservoir host (which is unknown but suspected to be bats) to humans. This work outlines a framework for an approach to provide early warning maps based on the present state of the environment. Time series data from Climate Forecast System ver. 2 and AVHRR and MODIS satellite sensors are the basis for the early warning models used. These maps can provide policy makers and local health care professionals timely information for disease surveillance and preparation for future Ebola outbreaks.

  12. Effect of Material Composition and Environmental Condition on Thermal Characteristics of Conductive Asphalt Concrete.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Pan; Wu, Shaopeng; Hu, Xiaodi; Liu, Gang; Li, Bo

    2017-02-23

    Conductive asphalt concrete with high thermal conductivity has been proposed to improve the solar energy collection and snow melting efficiencies of asphalt solar collector (ASC). This paper aims to provide some insight into choosing the basic materials for preparation of conductive asphalt concrete, as well as determining the evolution of thermal characteristics affected by environmental factors. The thermal properties of conductive asphalt concrete were studied by the Thermal Constants Analyzer. Experimental results showed that aggregate and conductive filler have a significant effect on the thermal properties of asphalt concrete, while the effect of asphalt binder was not evident due to its low proportion. Utilization of mineral aggregate and conductive filler with higher thermal conductivity is an efficient method to prepare conductive asphalt concrete. Moreover, change in thermal properties of asphalt concrete under different temperature and moisture conditions should be taken into account to determine the actual thermal properties of asphalt concrete. There was no noticeable difference in thermal properties of asphalt concrete before and after aging. Furthermore, freezing-thawing cycles strongly affect the thermal properties of conductive asphalt concrete, due to volume expansion and bonding degradation.

  13. Environmental risk assessment of GE plants under low-exposure conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, Andrew; Devos, Yann; Raybould, Alan; Bigelow, Patrick; Gray, Alan

    2014-12-01

    The requirement for environmental risk assessment (ERA) of genetically engineered (GE) plants prior to large scale or commercial introduction into the environment is well established in national laws and regulations, as well as in international agreements. Since the first introductions of GE plants in commercial agriculture in the 1990s, a nearly universal paradigm has emerged for conducting these assessments based on a few guiding principles. These include the concept of case-by-case assessment, the use of comparative assessments, and a focus of the ERA on characteristics of the plant, the introduced trait, and the receiving environment as well as the intended use. In practice, however, ERAs for GE plants have frequently focused on achieving highly detailed characterizations of potential hazards at the expense of consideration of the relevant levels of exposure. This emphasis on exhaustive hazard characterization can lead to great difficulties when applied to ERA for GE plants under low-exposure conditions. This paper presents some relevant considerations for conducting an ERA for a GE plant in a low-exposure scenario in the context of the generalized ERA paradigm, building on discussions and case studies presented during a session at ISBGMO 12.

  14. Environmental Conditions Associated with Elevated Vibrio parahaemolyticus Concentrations in Great Bay Estuary, New Hampshire.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erin A Urquhart

    Full Text Available Reports from state health departments and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate that the annual number of reported human vibriosis cases in New England has increased in the past decade. Concurrently, there has been a shift in both the spatial distribution and seasonal detection of Vibrio spp. throughout the region based on limited monitoring data. To determine environmental factors that may underlie these emerging conditions, this study focuses on a long-term database of Vibrio parahaemolyticus concentrations in oyster samples generated from data collected from the Great Bay Estuary, New Hampshire over a period of seven consecutive years. Oyster samples from two distinct sites were analyzed for V. parahaemolyticus abundance, noting significant relationships with various biotic and abiotic factors measured during the same period of study. We developed a predictive modeling tool capable of estimating the likelihood of V. parahaemolyticus presence in coastal New Hampshire oysters. Results show that the inclusion of chlorophyll a concentration to an empirical model otherwise employing only temperature and salinity variables, offers improved predictive capability for modeling the likelihood of V. parahaemolyticus in the Great Bay Estuary.

  15. Hydrogen gas sensing feature of polyaniline/titania (rutile) nanocomposite at environmental conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Milani Moghaddam, Hossain, E-mail: hossainmilani@yahoo.com [Solid State Physics Department, University of Mazandaran, Babolsar (Iran, Islamic Republic of); Nasirian, Shahruz [Solid State Physics Department, University of Mazandaran, Babolsar (Iran, Islamic Republic of); Basic Sciences Department, Mazandaran University of Science and Technology, Babol (Iran, Islamic Republic of)

    2014-10-30

    Graphical abstract: - Highlights: • Polyaniline/titania (rutile) nanocomposite (TPNC) was synthesized by a chemical oxidative polymerization method. • Surface morphology and titania (rutile) wt% in TPNC sensors were significant factors for H{sub 2} gas sensing. • TPNC sensors could be used for H{sub 2} gas sensing at different R.H. humidity. • TPNC Sensors exhibited considerable sensitive, reversible and repeatable response to H{sub 2} gas at environmental conditions. - Abstract: The resistance-based sensors of polyaniline/titania (rutile) nanocomposite (TPNC) were prepared by spin coating technique onto an epoxy glass substrate with Cu-interdigited electrodes to study their hydrogen (H{sub 2}) gas sensing features. Our findings are that the change of the surface morphology, porosity and wt% of titania in TPNCs have a significant effect on H{sub 2} gas sensing of sensors. All of the sensors had a reproducibility response toward 0.8 vol% H{sub 2} gas at room temperature, air pressure and 50% relative humidity. A sensor with 40 wt% of titania nanoparticles had better response/recovery time and the response than other sensors. Moreover, H{sub 2} gas sensing mechanism of TPNC sensors based contact areas and the correlation of energy levels between PANI chains and the titania grains were studied.

  16. Interplay between heritability of smoking and environmental conditions? A comparison of two birth cohorts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vink Jacqueline M

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Attitudes and policy towards smoking changed over the past years in many countries including the Netherlands. Generally, this led to a decrease in smoking prevalence. As demonstrated in twin and family studies, individual differences in smoking behavior are partly influenced by genetic factors. We explore whether the current change in environmental conditions has influenced the genetic architecture of smoking. This would constitute evidence for Gene × Environment (G×E interaction. Methods Data on smoking were available from 2 cohorts of young adult twins (18-25 year registered with the Netherlands Twin Register. The first cohort completed a survey in 1993-1995 (n = 2669 and the second in 2009-2010 (n = 2339. Prevalence and genetic architecture of smoking were compared across cohorts using structural equation models in MX. Results Smoking prevalence decreased from 40-51% to 22-23% between 1993-1995 and 2009-2010. Genetic analyses, making use of the different genetic resemblance in monozygotic and dizygotic twins, showed that the heritability was the same in both cohorts. Conclusions The change in policy and smoking attitudes that led to a decrease in prevalence of smoking did not change the heritability of smoking and thus no evidence was found for GxE interaction.

  17. Scottish Passive House: Insights into Environmental Conditions in Monitored Passive Houses

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    Janice Foster

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Climate change and sustainability legislation in recent years has led to significant changes in construction approaches in the UK housing sector. This has resulted in the adoption of new building typologies, including the German Passivhaus (Passive House standard. This standard aims to improve occupant comfort and energy efficiency, potentially changing the ways in which homes operate and how occupants interact with them. With increasing construction of low energy dwellings, there is an emerging gap in knowledge in relation to occupant health and wellbeing, thermal comfort, and indoor air quality (IAQ. Using data collected from a two year Building Performance Evaluation (BPE study funded by Innovate UK, the environmental data (temperature, relative humidity and carbon dioxide concentrations from five Certified Passive House homes in Scotland was compared. The results demonstrate problems with overheating with peak temperatures exceeding 30 °C. Imbalanced mechanical ventilation with heat recovery (MVHR systems were identified in 80% of the dwellings and inadequate IAQ was found due to poor ventilation. Only one of the Passive Houses studied exhibited thermal conditions and IAQ which were, on the whole within Passive House parameters. This paper outlines the insights and the main issues of Scottish Passive House in the broader context of sustainability.

  18. IGF-1 Release Kinetics from Chitosan Microparticles Fabricated Using Environmentally Benign Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mantripragada, Venkata P.; Jayasuriya, Ambalangodage C.

    2014-01-01

    The main objective of this study is to maximize growth factor encapsulation efficiency into microparticles. The novelty of this study is to maximize the encapsulated growth factors into microparticles by minimizing the use of organic solvents and using relatively low temperatures. The microparticles were fabricated using chitosan biopolymer as a base polymer and cross-linked with tripolyphosphate (TPP). Insulin like-growth factor-1 (IGF-1) was encapsulated into microparticles to study release kinetics and bioactivity. In order to authenticate the harms of using organic solvents like hexane and acetone during microparticle preparation, IGF-1 encapsulated microparticles prepared by the emulsification and coacervation methods were compared. The microparticles fabricated by emulsification method have shown a significant decrease (pmicroparticles and the bioactivity of the released IGF-1 were determined in vitro by live/dead viability assay. The mineralization data observed with Von Kossa assay, was supported by mRNA expression levels of osterix and runx2, which are transcription factors necessary for osteoblasts differentiation. Real time RT-PCR data showed an increased expression of runx 2 and a decreased expression of osterix over time, indicating differentiating osteoblasts. Chitosan microparticles prepared in optimum environmental conditions are a promising controlled delivery system for cells to attach, proliferate, differentiate and mineralize, thereby acting as a suitable bone repairing material. PMID:25063148

  19. Conditional Order-m Efficiency of Wastewater Treatment Plants: The Role of Environmental Factors

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    Ramón Fuentes

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The growing economic and environmental importance of managing water resources at a global level also entails greater efforts and interest in improving the functioning and efficiency of the increasingly more numerous wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs. In this context, this study analyzes the efficiency of a uniform sample of plants of this type located in the region of Valencia (Spain. The type of efficiency measure used for this (conditional order-m efficiency allows continuous and discrete contextual variables to be directly involved in the analysis and enables the assessment of their statistical significance and effect (positive or negative. The main findings of the study showed that the quality of the influent water and also the size and age of the plants had a significant influence on their efficiency levels. In particular, as regards the effect of such variables, the findings pointed to the existence of an inverse relationship between the quality of the influent water and the efficiency of the WWTPs. Also, a lower annual volume of treated water and more modern installations showed a positive influence. Additionally, the average efficiency levels observed turned out to be higher than those reported in previous studies.

  20. Modelling stream-fish functional traits in reference conditions: regional and local environmental correlates.

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    João M Oliveira

    Full Text Available Identifying the environmental gradients that control the functional structure of biological assemblages in reference conditions is fundamental to help river management and predict the consequences of anthropogenic stressors. Fish metrics (density of ecological guilds, and species richness from 117 least disturbed stream reaches in several western Iberia river basins were modelled with generalized linear models in order to investigate the importance of regional- and local-scale abiotic gradients to variation in functional structure of fish assemblages. Functional patterns were primarily associated with regional features, such as catchment elevation and slope, rainfall, and drainage area. Spatial variations of fish guilds were thus associated with broad geographic gradients, showing (1 pronounced latitudinal patterns, affected mainly by climatic factors and topography, or (2 at the basin level, strong upstream-downstream patterns related to stream position in the longitudinal gradient. Maximum native species richness was observed in midsize streams in accordance with the river continuum concept. The findings of our study emphasized the need to use a multi-scale approach in order to fully assess the factors that govern the functional organization of biotic assemblages in 'natural' streams, as well as to improve biomonitoring and restoration of fluvial ecosystems.

  1. Toxicity of pentachlorophenol to aquatic organisms under naturally varying and controlled environmental conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hedtke, S.F.; West, C.W.; Allen, K.N.; Norberg-King, T.J.; Mount, D.I.

    1986-06-01

    The toxicity of pentachlorophenol (PCP) was determined in the laboratory for 11 aquatic species. Tests were conducted seasonally in ambient Mississippi River water and under controlled conditions in Lake Superior water. Fifty-one acute toxicity tests were conducted, with LC50 values ranging from 85 micrograms/L for the white sucker Catastomus commersoni during the summer to greater than 7770 micrograms/L for the isopod Asellus racovitzai during the winter. The effect of PCP on growth and/or reproduction was determined for seven species. The most sensitive chronically exposed organisms were the cladoceran Ceriodaphnia reticulata and the snail Physa gyrina. The greatest variation in toxicity was due to species sensitivity. Within a given, season there was as much as a 40-fold difference in LC50 values between species. For any one species, the maximum variation in LC50 between seasons was approximately 14-fold. There were also substantial differences in acute-chronic relationships, with acute/chronic ratios ranging from greater than 37 for C. reticulata to 1 for Simocephalus vetulus. It is suggested that the composition of the aquatic community should be the most important consideration in estimating the potential environmental effects of PCP.

  2. ASSESSMENT OF IMPACT OF COHERENT LIGHT ON RESISTANCE OF PLANTS GROWING IN UNFAVOURABLE ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS

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    Małgorzata Śliwka

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The results of experiments on the effect of the coherent light emitted by lasers on plant material show that properly selected laser stimulation parameters, such as: wavelength, power, time and type of exposure, allow to obtain a greater growth of plant biomass, changes in the content of elements in the biomass and increasing plant resistance to unfavorable environmental conditions. The aim of this study was to determine the effect of laser stimulation on selected plant species (Iris pseudoacorus L., Lemna minor L. to increase their resistance to low temperatures and the ability to adapt to an environment polluted by mining activities (Phelum pratense L.. Plants from experimental groups (Iris pseudoacorus L., Phelum pratense L., Lemna minor L. were stimulated with coherent light with specific characteristics. To irradiate plants from experimental groups different algorithms of stimulation parameters, differentiating the method and time of exposure were used. Plants group without the stimulation, were the reference group. The article discusses the results of preliminary experiments carried out on a laboratory scale and pot experiments.

  3. Effect of Material Composition and Environmental Condition on Thermal Characteristics of Conductive Asphalt Concrete

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    Pan Pan

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Conductive asphalt concrete with high thermal conductivity has been proposed to improve the solar energy collection and snow melting efficiencies of asphalt solar collector (ASC. This paper aims to provide some insight into choosing the basic materials for preparation of conductive asphalt concrete, as well as determining the evolution of thermal characteristics affected by environmental factors. The thermal properties of conductive asphalt concrete were studied by the Thermal Constants Analyzer. Experimental results showed that aggregate and conductive filler have a significant effect on the thermal properties of asphalt concrete, while the effect of asphalt binder was not evident due to its low proportion. Utilization of mineral aggregate and conductive filler with higher thermal conductivity is an efficient method to prepare conductive asphalt concrete. Moreover, change in thermal properties of asphalt concrete under different temperature and moisture conditions should be taken into account to determine the actual thermal properties of asphalt concrete. There was no noticeable difference in thermal properties of asphalt concrete before and after aging. Furthermore, freezing–thawing cycles strongly affect the thermal properties of conductive asphalt concrete, due to volume expansion and bonding degradation.

  4. Control of Greenhouse Environmental Conditions with IOT Based Monitoring and Analysis System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ali Çaylı

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Wireless sensor networks applications and inter-machine communication (M2M, called the Internet of Things, help decision-makers to control complex systems thanks to the low data-rate and cost-effective data collection and analysis. These technologies offer new possibilities to monitor environmental management and agricultural policies, and to improve agricultural production, especially in low-income rural areas. In this study, IoT is proposed with a low cost, flexible and scalable data collection and analysis system. For this purpose, open source hardware microprocessor cards and sensors are stored in the greenhouse computer database using the IEEE 802.15.4 Zigbee wireless communication protocol. The data can be analyzed by greenhouse computer analysis software, which is developed with the PHP programming language. It is possible to monitor the real time data from the greenhouse computer. Also alert rules definitions can be made and the system was tested in greenhouse conditions. It has been observed that it performs operations steadily such as data transfer, sensor measurements and data processing. The proposed system may be useful for monitoring indoor climate and controlling ventilation, irrigation and heating systems, especially for small enterprises due to the modular structure.

  5. Impact of tidal power dams upon tides and environmental conditions in the Sea of Okhotsk

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nekrasov, A. V.; Romanenkov, D. A.

    2010-04-01

    The transformation of natural tidal sea-level and currents is studied resulting from large-scale tidal power plant (TPP) dams in bays of the Sea of Okhotsk (SO). Some effects due to this transformation are estimated based on predictive modelling and a number of expected changes in amplitudes and phases, and spectral composition of tidal oscillations are described. Changes of morphometric properties of basins change the character of tidal motions even on significant distance from a dam. That is why, it is impossible to estimate this impact as usual boundary-value problems. The problem is solved based on "impedance" conditions on the open boundary of the model area, allowing to take into account the radiation of the additional perturbations induced by both waves reflected from the dam and nonlinear effects inside the area. In general, the transformation effects are proportional to the dam size and depend essentially on the dam location, the creation of which can change dissipative and resonance properties of the bays. The changes in tidal energetics of SO due to the dam construction are also considered to show noticeable reconstruction of horizontal energy fluxes and changes in the energy dissipation. Possible environmental consequences are related mainly to the transformation of tidal currents.

  6. Does prolactin mediate parental and life-history decisions in response to environmental conditions in birds? A review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angelier, Frédéric; Wingfield, John C; Tartu, Sabrina; Chastel, Olivier

    2016-01-01

    This article is part of a Special Issue "Parental Care". In vertebrates, adjustments of physiology and behavior to environmental changes are often mediated by central physiological mechanisms, and more specifically by hormonal mechanisms. As a consequence, these mechanisms are thought to orchestrate life-history decisions in wild vertebrates. For instance, investigating the hormonal regulation of parental behavior is relevant to evaluate how parents modulate their effort according to specific environmental conditions. Surprisingly and despite being classically known as the 'parental hormone', prolactin has been overlooked in birds relative to this context. Our aim is to review evidence that changes in prolactin levels can mediate, at least to some extent, the response of breeding birds to environmental conditions. To do so, we first examine current evidence and limits for the role of prolactin in mediating parental behavior in birds. Second, we emphasize the influence of environmental conditions and stressors on circulating prolactin levels. In addition, we review to what extent prolactin levels are a reliable predictor of breeding success in wild birds. By linking environmental conditions, prolactin regulation, parental behavior, and breeding success, we highlight the potential role of this hormone in mediating parental decisions in birds. Finally, we also review the potential role of prolactin in mediating other life history decisions such as clutch size, re-nesting, and the timing of molt. By evaluating the influence of stressors on circulating prolactin levels during these other life-history decisions, we also raise new hypotheses regarding the potential of the prolactin stress response to regulate the orchestration of the annual cycle when environmental changes occur. To sum up, we show in this review that prolactin regulation has a strong potential to allow ecological physiologists to better understand how individuals adjust their life-history decisions

  7. Effect of adverse environmental conditions and protective clothing on temperature rise in a human body exposed to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Stephen M; McIntosh, Robert L; Iskra, Steve; Lajevardipour, Alireza; Wood, Andrew W

    2017-07-01

    This study considers the computationally determined thermal profile of a finely discretized, heterogeneous human body model, simulating a radiofrequency electromagnetic field (RF-EMF) worker wearing protective clothing subject to RF-EMF exposure, and subject to various environmental conditions including high ambient temperature and high humidity, with full thermoregulatory mechanisms in place. How the human body responds in various scenarios was investigated, and the information was used to consider safety limits in current international RF-EMF safety guidelines and standards. It was found that different environmental conditions had minimal impact on the magnitude of the thermal response due to RF-EMF exposure, and that the current safety factor of 10 applied in international RF-EMF safety guidelines and standards for RF-EMF workers is generally conservative, though it is only narrowly so when workers are subjected to the most adverse environmental conditions. Bioelectromagnetics. 38:356-363, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  8. Environmental factors and habitat use influence body condition of individuals in a species at risk, the grizzly bear.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourbonnais, Mathieu L; Nelson, Trisalyn A; Cattet, Marc R L; Darimont, Chris T; Stenhouse, Gordon B; Janz, David M

    2014-01-01

    Metrics used to quantify the condition or physiological states of individuals provide proactive mechanisms for understanding population dynamics in the context of environmental factors. Our study examined how anthropogenic disturbance, habitat characteristics and hair cortisol concentrations interpreted as a sex-specific indicator of potential habitat net-energy demand affect the body condition of grizzly bears (n = 163) in a threatened population in Alberta, Canada. We quantified environmental variables by modelling spatial patterns of individual habitat use based on global positioning system telemetry data. After controlling for gender, age and capture effects, we assessed the influence of biological and environmental variables on body condition using linear mixed-effects models in an information theoretical approach. Our strongest model suggested that body condition was improved when patterns of habitat use included greater vegetation productivity, increased influence of forest harvest blocks and oil and gas well sites, and a higher percentage of regenerating and coniferous forest. However, body condition was negatively affected by habitat use in close proximity to roads and in areas where potential energetic demands were high. Poor body condition was also associated with increased selection of parks and protected areas and greater seasonal vegetation productivity. Adult females, females with cubs-of-year, juvenile females and juvenile males were in poorer body condition compared with adult males, suggesting that intra-specific competition and differences in habitat use based on gender and age may influence body condition dynamics. Habitat net-energy demand also tended to be higher in areas used by females which, combined with observed trends in body condition, could affect reproductive success in this threatened population. Our results highlight the importance of considering spatiotemporal variability in environmental factors and habitat use when assessing

  9. Biofilm formation and exopolysaccharide (EPS) production by Cronobacter sakazakii depending on environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jung, Jin-Ho; Choi, Na-Young; Lee, Sun-Young

    2013-05-01

    Biofilm matrices are formed largely of extracellular polymeric substance (EPS). This study was conducted to investigate biofilm formation and EPS production by Cronobacter sakazakii under various conditions (media, nutrition, and relative humidity (RH)) by quantification of EPS and cell populations, Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscope (FE-SEM), and colony observation. Various agar media conditions (TSA without dextrose (W/D), M9 minimum salt medium (MSM) agar, and M9 MSM agar with 3% glucose, 3% NaCl, 3% Tween 80, 3% sucrose, and adjusted to pH 5 with HCl) were prepared. C. sakazakii biofilm formed on the surface of stainless steel coupons (SSCs) immersed in TSB W/D and M9 MSM with or without 0, 1, 3, and 5% sucrose and subsequently exposed to various RH levels (23, 43, 68, 85, and 100%). EPS production by C. sakazakii on TSA W/D was significantly higher than that on other media after 1 and 2 days. However, C. sakazakii ATCC 12868 produced the highest levels of EPS (209.18 ± 16.13 and 207.22 ± 4.14 μg/mL after 1 and 2 days, respectively) on M9 MSM agar with 3% sucrose. Regarding C. sakazakii ATCC 12868 biofilm formed on the surface of SSCs immersed in M9 MSM with 0, 1, 3, and 5% sucrose and subsequently exposed to various RHs, populations were significantly different among the various RHs and sucrose concentrations, and EPS production was significantly higher (4.69 mg/L) compared to other sucrose concentrations (0%:0.71 mg/L and 1%:0.98 mg/L), except for M9 MSM with 3% sucrose (2.97 mg/L) (P ≤ 0.05). From these results, biofilm formation and EPS production by C. sakazakii differed depending on the nutrient or environmental conditions provided to the cells. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Feasibility of Fiber Bragg Grating and Long-Period Fiber Grating Sensors under Different Environmental Conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jian-Neng Wang

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the feasibility of utilizing fiber Bragg grating (FBG and long-period fiber grating (LPFG sensors for nondestructive evaluation (NDE of infrastructures using Portland cement concretes and asphalt mixtures for temperature, strain, and liquid-level monitoring. The use of hybrid FBG and LPFG sensors is aimed at utilizing the advantages of two kinds of fiber grating to implement NDE for monitoring strains or displacements, temperatures, and water-levels of infrastructures such as bridges, pavements, or reservoirs for under different environmental conditions. Temperature fluctuation and stability tests were examined using FBG and LPFG sensors bonded on the surface of asphalt and concrete specimens. Random walk coefficient (RWC and bias stability (BS were used for the first time to indicate the stability performance of fiber grating sensors. The random walk coefficients of temperature variations between FBG (or LPFG sensor and a thermocouple were found in the range of −0.7499 °C/ to −1.3548 °C/. In addition, the bias stability for temperature variations, during the fluctuation and stability tests with FBG (or LPFG sensors were within the range of 0.01 °C/h with a 15–18 h time cluster to 0.09 °C/h with a 3–4 h time cluster. This shows that the performance of FBG or LPFG sensors is comparable with that of conventional high-resolution thermocouple sensors under rugged conditions. The strain measurement for infrastructure materials was conducted using a packaged FBG sensor bonded on the surface of an asphalt specimen under indirect tensile loading conditions. A finite element modeling (FEM was applied to compare experimental results of indirect tensile FBG strain measurements. For a comparative analysis between experiment and simulation, the FEM numerical results agreed with those from FBG strain measurements. The results of the liquid-level sensing tests show the LPFG-based sensor could discriminate five stationary liquid

  11. Determinants of suboptimal breast-feeding practices in Pakistan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hazir, Tabish; Akram, Dure-Samin; Nisar, Yasir Bin; Kazmi, Narjis; Agho, Kingsley E; Abbasi, Saleem; Khan, Amira M; Dibley, Michael J

    2013-04-01

    Exclusive breast-feeding is estimated to reduce infant mortality in low-income countries by up to 13 %. The aim of the present study was to determine the risk factors associated with suboptimal breast-feeding practices in Pakistan. A cross-sectional study using data extracted from the multistage cluster sample survey of the Pakistan Demographic and Health Survey 2006-2007. A nationally representative sample of households. Last-born alive children aged 0-23 months (total weighted sample size 3103). The prevalences of timely initiation of breast-feeding, bottle-feeding in children aged 0-23 months, exclusive breast-feeding and predominant breast-feeding in infants aged 0-5 months were 27·3 %, 32·1 %, 37·1 % and 18·7 %, respectively. Multivariate analysis indicated that working mothers (OR = 1·48, 95 % CI 1·16, 1·87; P = 0·001) and mothers who delivered by Caesarean section (OR = 1·95, 95 % CI 1·30, 2·90; P = 0·001) had significantly higher odds for no timely initiation of breast-feeding. Mothers from North West Frontier Province were significantly less likely (OR = 0·37, 95 % CI 0·23, 0·59; P feed their babies exclusively. Mothers delivered by traditional birth attendants had significantly higher odds to predominantly breast-feed their babies (OR = 1·96, 95 % CI 1·18, 3·24; P = 0·009). The odds of being bottle-fed was significantly higher in infants whose mothers had four or more antenatal clinic visits (OR = 1·93, 95 % CI 1·46, 2·55; P feeding practices. To gain the full benefits of breast-feeding for child health and nutrition, there is an urgent need to develop interventions to improve the rates of exclusive breast-feeding.

  12. Genotypic Variation in the Response to Suboptimal Temperature at Different Plant Densities in Cut Chrysanthemum

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ploeg, van der A.; Carvalho, S.M.P.; Heuvelink, E.

    2009-01-01

    Energy efficiency of greenhouse cut chrysanthemum (Chrysanthemum morifolium Ramat.) may be increased by breeding. In addition to breeding for cultivars with a shorter reaction time at suboptimal temperatures, an alternative approach would be to develop cultivars that are heavier at suboptimal

  13. Spatio-temporal patterns and environmental controls of small pelagic fish body condition from contrasted Mediterranean areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brosset, Pablo; Fromentin, Jean-Marc; Van Beveren, Elisabeth; Lloret, Josep; Marques, Virginie; Basilone, Gualtiero; Bonanno, Angelo; Carpi, Piera; Donato, Fortunata; Čikeš Keč, Vanja; De Felice, Andrea; Ferreri, Rosalia; Gašparević, Denis; Giráldez, Ana; Gücü, Ali; Iglesias, Magdalena; Leonori, Iole; Palomera, Isabel; Somarakis, Stylianos; Tičina, Vjekoslav; Torres, Pedro; Ventero, Ana; Zorica, Barbara; Ménard, Frédéric; Saraux, Claire

    2017-02-01

    Small pelagic fish are among the most ecologically and economically important marine fish species and are characterized by large fluctuations all over the world. In the Mediterranean Sea, low catches and biomass of anchovies and sardines have been described in some areas during the last decade, resulting in important fisheries crises. Therefore, we studied anchovy and sardine body condition variability, a key index of population health and its response to environmental and anthropogenic changes. Wide temporal and spatial patterns were investigated by analyzing separately data from scientific surveys and fisheries in eight Mediterranean areas between 1975 and 2015. Results showed that anchovy and sardine body condition as well as maximum size in some areas sharply decreased in most Mediterranean areas along years (except in the Northern Alboran Sea). Despite this general pattern, well-marked environmental differences between sub-regions were highlighted by several analyses and variations in body condition were not found to be homogeneous over all the Mediterranean Sea. Further, other analyses revealed that except for the Adriatic where major changes towards a lower body condition were concomitant with a decrease in river runoffs and chl-a concentration, no concomitant environmental regime shift was detected in other areas. Together, these analyses highlighted the current poor body condition of almost all small pelagic fish populations in the Mediterranean. Yet, global environmental indices could not explain the observed changes and the general decrease in condition might more likely come from regional environmental and/or anthropogenic (fishing) effects. A prolonged state of poor fish body condition, together with an observed reduced size and early age-at-maturity may have strong ecological, economic and social consequences all around the Mediterranean Sea.

  14. CONSIDERATIONS REGARDING THE BAIA MARE AREA METEOROLOGICAL CONDITIONS IN THE LAST 5 YEARS WITH HELP OF ENVIRONMENTAL INFORMATICS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. Cioruţa

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Ever since “the environment” gained its place in the public international agenda (environmental legislation, sustainable development or disaster and hazard management it has been bundled with data, information, knowledge and information systems. Environmental Monitoring Systems (EMSs, Environmental Monitoring and Analyzing Systems (EMASs and especially Environmental Information Systems (EISs are integrated part of what we call Environmental Informatics (EI platform.In this context, as we speak, the are of EI is becoming more complex due to the current context and trend of making the EISs available to the public and end-users access; this phenomena is based on the assumption that public and environmental information end-users awareness, participation and acting is improved by the rate of access to the environmental information to solve the complex problematic covered by the research, engineering and environmental protection fields. The aim of the present paper is to introduce and describe an innovative possibilities of forecasting and monitoring the environment meteorological specific conditions in Baia Mare urban area using a specialized EISs software.

  15. An Analysis of Environmental Law in Pakistan-policy and Conditions of Implementation

    OpenAIRE

    Muhammad Tayyab Sohail; Huang Delin; Muhammad Afnan Talib; Xie Xiaoqing; Malik Muhammad Akhtar

    2014-01-01

    We have human-environment relations inseparable since the creation of mankind. Being a developing country, Pakistan is striving to make developments in all the respective fields which alleviate our hot raising socio-economic issues. But beside the infrastructural and economic growth our environment is also getting polluted leaving behind several drastic and severe environmental crises and one of the adverse repercussions is environmental pollution. The extreme effects of environmental polluti...

  16. Degradation kinetics of a potent antifouling agent, butenolide, under various environmental conditions

    KAUST Repository

    Chen, Lianguo

    2015-01-01

    © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. Here, we investigated the degradation kinetics of butenolide, a promising antifouling compound, under various environmental conditions. The active ingredient of the commercial antifoulant SeaNine 211, 4,5-dichloro-2-n-octyl-4-isothiazolin-3-one (DCOIT), was used as positive control. The results showed that the degradation rate increased with increasing temperature. Half-lives of butenolide at 4. °C, 25. °C and 40. °C were. >64. d, 30.5. d and 3.9. d, respectively. Similar half-lives were recorded for DCOIT: >64. d at 4. °C, 27.9. d at 25. °C and 4.5. d at 40. °C. Exposure to sunlight accelerated the degradation of both butenolide and DCOIT. The photolysis half-lives of butenolide and DCOIT were 5.7. d and 6.8. d, respectively, compared with 9.7. d and 14.4. d for the dark control. Biodegradation led to the fastest rate of butenolide removal from natural seawater, with a half-life of 0.5. d, while no obvious degradation was observed for DCOIT after incubation for 4. d. The biodegradative ability of natural seawater for butenolide was attributed mainly to marine bacteria. During the degradation of butenolide and DCOIT, a gradual decrease in antifouling activity was observed, as indicated by the increased settlement percentage of cypris larvae from barnacle Balanus amphitrite. Besides, increased cell growth of marine diatom Skeletonema costatum demonstrated that the toxicity of seawater decreased gradually without generation of more toxic by-products. Overall, rapid degradation of butenolide in natural seawater supported its claim as a promising candidate for commercial antifouling industry.

  17. Growth conditions and environmental factors impact aerosolization but not virulence of Francisella tularensis infection in mice.

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    Seth eFaith

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available In refining methodology to develop a mouse model for inhalation of Francisella tularensis, it was noted that both relative humidity and growth media impacted the aerosol concentration of the live vaccine strain (LVS of F. tularensis. A relative humidity of less than 55% had a negative impact on the spray factor, the ratio between the concentration of LVS in the aerosol and the nebulizer. The spray factor was significantly higher for LVS grown in brain heart infusion (BHI broth than LVS grown in Mueller-Hinton broth (MHb or Chamberlain’s Chemically Defined Medium (CCDM. The variability between aerosol exposures was also considerably less with BHI. LVS grown in BHI survived desiccation far longer than MHb-grown or CCDM-grown LVS (~70% at 20 minutes for BHI compared to <50% for MHb and CCDM. Removal of the capsule by hypertonic treatment impacted the spray factor for CCDM-grown LVS or MHb-grown LVS but not BHI-grown LVS, suggesting the choice of culture media altered the adherence of the capsule to the cell membrane. The choice of growth media did not impact the LD50 of LVS but the LD99 of BHI-grown LVS was 1 log lower than that for MHb-grown LVS or CCDM-grown LVS. Splenomegaly was prominent in mice that succumbed to MHb- and BHI-grown LVS but not CCDM-grown LVS. Environmental factors and growth conditions should be evaluated when developing new animal models for aerosol infection, particularly for vegetative bacterial pathogens.

  18. Role of Environmental Conditions on the Fate and Transport of Engineered Nanomaterials in the Subsurface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, S. L.; Chowdhury, I.

    2011-12-01

    Industrial processes and consumer products based on nanotechnology are a fast-rising component of the current economy, predicted to be $1 trillion industry by 2015. As most of the industries are embracing nanotechnology in their production for novel properties and higher efficiency, nanomaterial-based products will capture the significant portion of the consumer market in near future. Hence, nanomaterial-based products will be ubiquitous and the byproducts of the production will be released in the environment, demanding the investigation of fate, transport and toxicity of these novel materials. Therefore, in this study the fate and transport of nanoparticles in aquatic environments have been investigated. Titanium dioxide (TiO2) has been used as model nanoparticles, as it is one of most widely used nanoparticles in consumer products and industry. The project was developed to identify the fundamental mechanisms involved in the transport of nano-TiO2 and the contribution of various environmental parameters including solution chemistry (pH, ionic strength, and ion valence), hydrodynamic effects, and the presence of natural organic matter (NOM) and bacteria. Extensive physicochemical characterization of the nanoparticles was conducted under various solution condition including electrokinetic characterization, hydrodynamic diameter, and stability of nanoparticles. Transport studies have been conducted in both macroscopic (packed-bed column) and microscopic (parallel plate flow cell) systems. The combination of these transport and characterization tools has demonstrated the critical role that pH, ionic strength and valence, NOM, bacteria, primary nanoparticle size and aggregation state play in the transport. Results from both transport systems, as well as bacterial and particle characterization will be presented, as well as the proposed transport and retention mechanisms observed.

  19. Nitrogen fertilizer influence on wheat yield and use efficiency under different environmental conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Violeta Mandic

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Managing N inputs in wheat production systems is an important issue in order to achieve máximum profitable production, and minimum negative environmental impact. The aim of this investigation carried out in dry land farming in the Vojvodina province (Serbia was to estimate the effects of different N fertilization levels (0, 75, and 150 kg N ha-1 on some quantitative traits, rain-use efficiency (RUE, N agronomic efficiency (NAE, and N use efficiency (NUE in two Serbian winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L. cultivars 'Pobeda' and 'Renesansa'. 'Pobeda' had higher grain yield (4437 kg ha-1 and RUE (8.32 kg ha-1 mm-1 than 'Renesansa' (4265 kg ha-1 and 8 kg ha-1 mm-1, respectively. Grain yield (4652 kg ha-1 and NUE (31.46 kg kg-1 N were higher in the 2010-2011 season (favorable weather conditions than in the 2011-2012 (4050 kg ha-1 and 27.59 kg kg-1 N, respectively. The highly significant effect on grain yield (4396 and 4494 kg ha-1, RUE (8.24 and 8.45 kg ha-1 mm-1, NAE (3.11 and 2.21 kg kg-1 N and NUE (58.62 and 29.96 kg kg-1 N had levels of 75 and 150 kg N ha-1. NAE and NUE declined at high N rates. Based on the results of this study, farmers should be advised that the use of large amounts of N increases production costs and reduce the economic benefits. The increase in wheat production is possible by selecting adapted genotypes with improved NUE.

  20. Concrete Durability in Harsh Environmental Conditions Exposed to Freeze Thaw Cycles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamze, Youssef

    Under line Pathology of Materials; one of the environmental causes of damage effects on concrete is freeze thaw cycles, which deteriorate the concrete exposed to water in cold weather. An example of old concrete is a dam project that was built in Canada, in the early 1909-1913. This project was reconstructed in 1932, 1934 and 1972, and required renovation due to the ice abrasion with the freeze/thaw cycles. Before completing any renovation, it is required to analyze the structural stability and the concrete failures of this dam. An investigation was conducted to determine the quality of the concrete in the Piers and in the Bridge Deck Slab. It was also required to determine the basic materials' properties that constitute this project. This will improve the analysis of its stability [10]. Core samples were examined and used as test samples, for the Alkali-Silica reactivity test samples, as well as the compressive strength test, the Chloride Ion test, and the freeze thaw testing which was performed on two sets of 12 concrete core samples that were taken from different locations in the project. These locations are the representations of the age of the concrete. Thus, the age difference between the samples' two sets is four decades. Testing was performed on prisms cut from cores. ASTM C-666 procedure (A) was applied using an automatic test system [6]. It was suggested that a plan for renovation of this project should be performed after the analysis is undertaken to assess the conditions estimating the remaining life of the concrete in this project [15].

  1. Infrared spectroscopy of pollen identifies plant species and genus as well as environmental conditions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Boris Zimmermann

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: It is imperative to have reliable and timely methodologies for analysis and monitoring of seed plants in order to determine climate-related plant processes. Moreover, impact of environment on plant fitness is predominantly based on studies of female functions, while the contribution of male gametophytes is mostly ignored due to missing data on pollen quality. We explored the use of infrared spectroscopy of pollen for an inexpensive and rapid characterization of plants. METHODOLOGY: The study was based on measurement of pollen samples by two Fourier transform infrared techniques: single reflectance attenuated total reflectance and transmission measurement of sample pellets. The experimental set, with a total of 813 samples, included five pollination seasons and 300 different plant species belonging to all principal spermatophyte clades (conifers, monocotyledons, eudicots, and magnoliids. RESULTS: The spectroscopic-based methodology enables detection of phylogenetic variations, including the separation of confamiliar and congeneric species. Furthermore, the methodology enables measurement of phenotypic plasticity by the detection of inter-annual variations within the populations. The spectral differences related to environment and taxonomy are interpreted biochemically, specifically variations of pollen lipids, proteins, carbohydrates, and sporopollenins. The study shows large variations of absolute content of nutrients for congenital species pollinating in the same environmental conditions. Moreover, clear correlation between carbohydrate-to-protein ratio and pollination strategy has been detected. Infrared spectral database with respect to biochemical variation among the range of species, climate and biogeography will significantly improve comprehension of plant-environment interactions, including impact of global climate change on plant communities.

  2. Weeks Island brine diffuser site study: baseline conditions and environmental assessment technical report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    None

    1980-12-12

    This technical report presents the results of a study conducted at two alternative brine diffuser sites (A and B) proposed for the Weeks Island salt dome, together with an analysis of the potential physical, chemical, and biological effects of brine disposal for this area of the Gulf of Mexico. Brine would result from either the leaching of salt domes to form or enlarge oil storage caverns, or the subsequent use of these caverns for crude oil storage in the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) program. Brine leached from the Weeks Island salt dome would be transported through a pipeline which would extend from the salt dome either 27 nautical miles (32 statute miles) for Site A, or 41 nautical miles (47 statute miles) for Site B, into Gulf waters. The brine would be discharged at these sites through an offshore diffuser at a sustained peak rate of 39 ft/sup 3//sec. The disposal of large quantities of brine in the Gulf could have a significant impact on the biology and water quality of the area. Physical and chemical measurements of the marine environment at Sites A and B were taken between September 1977 and July 1978 to correlate the existing environmental conditions with the estimated physical extent of tthe brine discharge as predicted by the MIT model (US Dept. of Commerce, 1977a). Measurements of wind, tide, waves, currents, and stratification (water column structure) were also obtained since the diffusion and dispersion of the brine plume are a function of the local circulation regime. These data were used to calculate both near- and far-field concentrations of brine, and may also be used in the design criteria for diffuser port configuration and verification of the plume model. Biological samples were taken to characterize the sites and to predict potential areas of impact with regard to the discharge. This sampling focused on benthic organisms and demersal fish. (DMC)

  3. The effects of trace elements, cations, and environmental conditions on protocatechuate 3,4-dioxygenase activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andréa Scaramal da Silva

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Phenanthracene is a highly toxic organic compound capable of contaminating water and soils, and biodegradation is an important tool for remediating polluted environments. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of trace elements, cations, and environmental conditions on the activity of the protocatechol 3,4-dioxygenase (P3,4O enzyme produced by the isolate Leifsonia sp. in cell-free and immobilized extracts. The isolate was grown in Luria Bertani broth medium (LB amended with 250 mg L-1 of phenanthrene. Various levels of pH (4.0-9.0, temperature (5-80 °C, time (0-90 min, trace elements (Cu2+, Hg2+ and Fe3+, and cations (Mg2+, Mn2+, K+ and NH4+ were tested to determine which conditions optimized enzyme activity. In general, the immobilized extract exhibited higher enzyme activity than the cell-free extract in the presence of trace elements and cations. Adding iron yielded the highest relative activity for both cell-free and immobilized extracts, with values of 16 and 99 %, respectively. Copper also increased enzyme activity for both cell-free and immobilized extracts, with values of 8 and 44 %, respectively. Enzyme activity in the phosphate buffer was high across a wide range of pH, reaching 80 % in the pH range between 6.5 and 8.0. The optimum temperatures for enzyme activity differed for cell-free and immobilized extracts, with maximum enzyme activity observed at 35 ºC for the cell-free extract and at 55 ºC for the immobilized extract. The cell-free extract of the P3,4O enzyme exhibited high activity only during the first 3 min of incubation, when it showed 50 % relative activity, and dropped to 0 % after 60 min of incubation. By contrast, activity in the immobilized extract was maintained during 90 min of incubation. This isolate has important characteristics for phenanthrene biodegradation, producing high quantities of the P3,4O enzyme that forms part of the most important pathway for PAH biodegradation.

  4. Factors associated with suboptimal adherence to antiretroviral therapy in Asia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Awachana Jiamsakul

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Adherence to antiretroviral therapy (ART plays an important role in treatment outcomes. It is crucial to identify factors influencing adherence in order to optimize treatment responses. The aim of this study was to assess the rates of, and factors associated with, suboptimal adherence (SubAdh in the first 24 months of ART in an Asian HIV cohort. Methods: As part of a prospective resistance monitoring study, the TREAT Asia Studies to Evaluate Resistance Monitoring Study (TASER-M collected patients’ adherence based on the World Health Organization-validated Adherence Visual Analogue Scale. SubAdh was defined in two ways: (i 14 days. Time was divided into four intervals: 0–6, 6–12, 12–18 and 18–24 months. Factors associated with SubAdh were analysed using generalized estimating equations. Results: Out of 1316 patients, 32% ever reported 2 assessments per patient per year had an odds ratio (OR=0.7 (95% confidence interval (CI (0.55 to 0.90, p=0.006, compared to sites with ≤2 assessments per patient per year. Compared to heterosexual exposure, SubAdh was higher in injecting drug users (IDUs (OR=1.92, 95% CI (1.23 to 3.00, p=0.004 and lower in homosexual exposure (OR=0.52, 95% CI (0.38 to 0.71, p<0.001. Patients taking a nucleoside transcriptase inhibitor and protease inhibitor (NRTI+PI combination were less likely to report adherence <100% (OR=0.36, 95% CI (0.20 to 0.67, p=0.001 compared to patients taking an NRTI and non-nucleoside transcriptase inhibitor (NRTI+NNRTI combination. SubAdh decreased with increasing time on ART (all p<0.001. Similar associations were found with adherence <95% as the outcome. Conclusions: We found that SubAdh, defined as either <100% and <95%, was associated with mode of HIV exposure, ART regimen, time on ART and frequency of adherence measurement. The more frequently sites assessed patients, the lower the SubAdh, possibly reflecting site resourcing for patient counselling. Although social

  5. Over-the-counter suboptimal dispensing of antibiotics in Uganda

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mukonzo JK

    2013-08-01

    : In Uganda, at least four in every ten individuals that visit a health-care facility are treated with an antibiotic. Antibiotics are largely given as over-the-counter drugs at community pharmacies. The number of antibiotic prescribed daily doses/1,000 antibiotic clients does not significantly differ between categories of health-care facilities except at community pharmacies, where lower doses are dispensed compared to other health-care facilities. Keywords: antibiotic, over-the-counter dispensing, suboptimal dosing, Uganda

  6. A system analysis of a suboptimal surgical experience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richards Michael

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background System analyses of incidents that occur in the process of health care delivery are rare. A case study of a series of incidents that one of the authors experienced after routine urologic surgery is presented. We interpret the sequence of events as a case of cascading incidents that resulted in outcomes that were suboptimal, although fortunately not fatal. Methods A system dynamics approach was employed to develop illustrative models (flow diagrams of the dynamics of the patient's interaction with surgery and emergency departments. The flow diagrams were constructed based upon the experience of the patient, chart review, discussion with the involved physicians as well as several physician colleagues, comparison of our diagrams with those developed by the hospital of interest for internal planning purposes, and an iterative process with one of the co-authors who is a system dynamics expert. A dynamic hypothesis was developed using insights gained by building the flow diagrams. Results The incidents originated in design flaws and many small innocuous system changes that have occurred incrementally over time, which by themselves may have no consequence but in conjunction with some system randomness can have serious consequences. In the patient's case, the incidents that occurred in preoperative assessment and surgery originated in communication and procedural failures. System delays, communication failures, and capacity issues contributed largely to the subsequent incidents. Some of these issues were controllable by the physicians and staff of the institution, whereas others were less controllable. To the system's credit, some of the more controllable issues were addressed, but systemic problems like overcrowding are unlikely to be addressed in the near future. Conclusion This is first instance that we are aware of in the literature where a system dynamics approach has been used to analyze a patient safety experience. The

  7. A system analysis of a suboptimal surgical experience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Robert C; Cooke, David L; Richards, Michael

    2009-01-06

    System analyses of incidents that occur in the process of health care delivery are rare. A case study of a series of incidents that one of the authors experienced after routine urologic surgery is presented. We interpret the sequence of events as a case of cascading incidents that resulted in outcomes that were suboptimal, although fortunately not fatal. A system dynamics approach was employed to develop illustrative models (flow diagrams) of the dynamics of the patient's interaction with surgery and emergency departments. The flow diagrams were constructed based upon the experience of the patient, chart review, discussion with the involved physicians as well as several physician colleagues, comparison of our diagrams with those developed by the hospital of interest for internal planning purposes, and an iterative process with one of the co-authors who is a system dynamics expert. A dynamic hypothesis was developed using insights gained by building the flow diagrams. The incidents originated in design flaws and many small innocuous system changes that have occurred incrementally over time, which by themselves may have no consequence but in conjunction with some system randomness can have serious consequences. In the patient's case, the incidents that occurred in preoperative assessment and surgery originated in communication and procedural failures. System delays, communication failures, and capacity issues contributed largely to the subsequent incidents. Some of these issues were controllable by the physicians and staff of the institution, whereas others were less controllable. To the system's credit, some of the more controllable issues were addressed, but systemic problems like overcrowding are unlikely to be addressed in the near future. This is first instance that we are aware of in the literature where a system dynamics approach has been used to analyze a patient safety experience. The qualitative system dynamics analysis was useful in understanding the

  8. Factors associated with suboptimal adherence to antiretroviral therapy in Asia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiamsakul, Awachana; Kumarasamy, Nagalingeswaran; Ditangco, Rossana; Li, Patrick CK; Phanuphak, Praphan; Sirisanthana, Thira; Sungkanuparph, Somnuek; Kantipong, Pacharee; Lee, Christopher KC; Mustafa, Mahiran; Merati, Tuti; Kamarulzaman, Adeeba; Singtoroj, Thida; Law, Matthew

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Adherence to antiretroviral therapy (ART) plays an important role in treatment outcomes. It is crucial to identify factors influencing adherence in order to optimize treatment responses. The aim of this study was to assess the rates of, and factors associated with, suboptimal adherence (SubAdh) in the first 24 months of ART in an Asian HIV cohort. Methods As part of a prospective resistance monitoring study, the TREAT Asia Studies to Evaluate Resistance Monitoring Study (TASER-M) collected patients’ adherence based on the World Health Organization-validated Adherence Visual Analogue Scale. SubAdh was defined in two ways: (i) 14 days. Time was divided into four intervals: 0–6, 6–12, 12–18 and 18–24 months. Factors associated with SubAdh were analysed using generalized estimating equations. Results Out of 1316 patients, 32% ever reported 2 assessments per patient per year had an odds ratio (OR)=0.7 (95% confidence interval (CI) (0.55 to 0.90), p=0.006), compared to sites with ≤2 assessments per patient per year. Compared to heterosexual exposure, SubAdh was higher in injecting drug users (IDUs) (OR=1.92, 95% CI (1.23 to 3.00), p=0.004) and lower in homosexual exposure (OR=0.52, 95% CI (0.38 to 0.71), p<0.001). Patients taking a nucleoside transcriptase inhibitor and protease inhibitor (NRTI+PI) combination were less likely to report adherence <100% (OR=0.36, 95% CI (0.20 to 0.67), p=0.001) compared to patients taking an NRTI and non-nucleoside transcriptase inhibitor (NRTI+NNRTI) combination. SubAdh decreased with increasing time on ART (all p<0.001). Similar associations were found with adherence <95% as the outcome. Conclusions We found that SubAdh, defined as either <100% and <95%, was associated with mode of HIV exposure, ART regimen, time on ART and frequency of adherence measurement. The more frequently sites assessed patients, the lower the SubAdh, possibly reflecting site resourcing for patient counselling. Although social

  9. Chloroform in indoor swimming-pool air: monitoring and modeling coupled with the effects of environmental conditions and occupant activities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsu, H T; Chen, M J; Lin, C H; Chou, W S; Chen, J H

    2009-08-01

    Human exposure to chloroform in indoor swimming pools has been recognized as a potential health concern. Although environmental monitoring is a useful technique to investigate chloroform concentrations in indoor swimming-pool air, in practice, the interpretations of measured data would inevitably run into difficulties due to the complex interactions among the numerous variables, including environmental conditions and occupant activities. Considering of the relevant variables of environmental conditions and occupant activities, a mathematical model was first proposed to predict the chloroform concentration in indoor swimming-pool air. The developed model provides a straightforward, conceptually simple way to predict the indoor air chloroform concentration by calculating the mass flux, J, and the Péclet number, Pe, and by using a heuristic value of the indoor airflow recycle ratio, R. The good agreement between model simulation and measured data demonstrates the feasibility of using the presented model for indoor air quality management, operational guidelines and health-related risk assessment.

  10. Environmental

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sawsan M. Aboul Ezz

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Rotifers are one of the most common, abundant components of plankton in the coastal waters of the Mediterranean Sea, which means that they can be used as bio-indicators and provide useful information on the long-term dynamics of the El-Mex Bay ecosystem. Rotifera species were quantitatively and qualitatively assessed in the El-Mex Bay, west of Alexandria at eight stations to study spatial, temporal, dominance, and abundance of the rotifer community and their relation with changes in environmental conditions. Samples were collected seasonally from autumn 2011 to autumn 2012. Ecological parameters were determined and correlated with total rotifers abundance to gain information about the forces that structure the rotifer community in this dynamic environment. A total of 38 rotifer species were identified belonging to 16 genera within 12 families and 3 orders under one class and contributed about 12.1% of the total zooplankton in the study area with an average of 1077 specimens/m3. Maximum density was observed in summer 2012 with an average of 1445 specimens/m3. During autumn 2011 rotifers appeared in low density (434 specimens/m3. The predominant species Ascomorpha saltans, Brachionus urceolaris, Synchaeta oblonga, Synchaeta okai, Synchaeta pectinata and Synchaeta tremula were recorded in all study stations of the bay. Salinity, temperature, depth, and chlorophyll-a concentration were the most important environmental factors co-related with the abundance of rotifers in the El-Mex Bay. A significant positive correlation between the total rotifer abundance and chlorophyll-a was observed during winter 2012 and summer 2012 (r = 0.763 and r = 0.694, respectively, at p ⩽ 0.05.

  11. Effect of environmental conditions on the mechanical properties and fungal degradation of polycaprolactone/microcrystalline cellulose/wood flour composites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ronald Sabo; Liwei Jin; Nicole Stark; Rebecca E. Ibach

    2013-01-01

    Polycaprolactone (PCL) filled with microcrystalline cellulose (MCC), wood flour (WF), or both were characterized before and after exposure to various environmental conditions for 60 days. PCL/WF composites had the greatest tensile strength and modulus compared to neat PCL or PCL composites containing MCC. Electron microscopy indicated better adhesion between WF...

  12. Seeking Balance: The Importance of Environmental Conditions in Men and Women Faculty's Well-Being

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCoy, Shannon K.; Newell, Ellen E.; Gardner, Susan K.

    2013-01-01

    Faculty retention is of increasing importance in the current economic climate. We examined the role of an institution's environmental conditions (e.g., climate, collegiality, and administration) in faculty well-being (i.e., job satisfaction, intent to leave, emotional and physical health). Women reported significantly lower well-being and a…

  13. Casein films: effects of formulation, environmental conditions, and addition of citric pectin on the structure and mechanical properties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thin casein films for food packaging applications reportedly possess good strength and low oxygen permeability, but low water-resistance and elasticity. Modifying and customizing the mechanical properties of the films to target specific behaviors depending on environmental conditions would enable a...

  14. Spatial distribution of intact polar lipids in North Sea surface waters: Relationship with environmental conditions and microbial community composition

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brandsma, J.; Hopmans, E.C.; Brussaard, C.P.D.; Witte, H.J.; Schouten, S.; Sinninghe Damsté, J.S.

    2012-01-01

    We characterized and quantified the intact polar lipid (IPL) composition of the surface waters of the North Sea and investigated its relationships with environmental conditions, microbial abundances, and community composition. The total IPL pool comprised at least 600 different IPL species in seven

  15. Achieving compliance with environmental health-related land use planning conditions in Hong Kong: perspectives from traditional motivation theories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Man, Rita Li Yi

    2009-11-01

    Environmental health-related land use planning conditions can enhance the environment in Hong Kong. Previous research by others has shown, however, that a lack of compliance with planning conditions often occurs. And as no direct enforcement of planning conditions exists in Hong Kong, it is of interest to understand possible ways in which to increase the motivation of land developers and property owners to comply with planning conditions. The author looked at motivation from the perspective of three traditional motivation theories: Theory X, Theory Y, and incentive theory. While the majority of this article focuses on the enforcement and the legal tests in land use planning conditions, it also presents the results of the first study of the motivations behind Hong Kong land developers to comply with land use planning conditions.

  16. Suboptimal cytoreduction in ovarian carcinoma is associated with molecular pathways characteristic of increased stromal activation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Zhenqiu; Beach, Jessica A; Agadjanian, Hasmik; Jia, Dongyu; Aspuria, Paul-Joseph; Karlan, Beth Y; Orsulic, Sandra

    2015-12-01

    Suboptimal cytoreductive surgery in advanced epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) is associated with poor survival but it is unknown if poor outcome is due to the intrinsic biology of unresectable tumors or insufficient surgical effort resulting in residual tumor-sustaining clones. Our objective was to identify the potential molecular pathway(s) and cell type(s) that may be responsible for suboptimal surgical resection. By comparing gene expression in optimally and suboptimally cytoreduced patients, we identified a gene network associated with suboptimal cytoreduction and explored the biological processes and cell types associated with this gene network. We show that primary tumors from suboptimally cytoreduced patients express molecular signatures that are typically present in a distinct molecular subtype of EOC characterized by increased stromal activation and lymphovascular invasion. Similar molecular pathways are present in EOC metastases, suggesting that primary tumors in suboptimally cytoreduced patients are biologically similar to metastatic tumors. We demonstrate that the suboptimal cytoreduction network genes are enriched in reactive tumor stroma cells rather than malignant tumor cells. Our data suggest that the success of cytoreductive surgery is dictated by tumor biology, such as extensive stromal reaction and increased invasiveness, which may hinder surgical resection and ultimately lead to poor survival. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  17. Sensitive and selective culture medium for detection of environmental Clostridium difficile isolates without requirement for anaerobic culture conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cadnum, Jennifer L; Hurless, Kelly N; Deshpande, Abhishek; Nerandzic, Michelle M; Kundrapu, Sirisha; Donskey, Curtis J

    2014-09-01

    Effective and easy-to-use methods for detecting Clostridium difficile spore contamination would be useful for identifying environmental reservoirs and monitoring the effectiveness of room disinfection. Culture-based detection methods are sensitive for detecting C. difficile, but their utility is limited due to the requirement of anaerobic culture conditions and microbiological expertise. We developed a low-cost selective broth medium containing thioglycolic acid and l-cystine, termed C. difficile brucella broth with thioglycolic acid and l-cystine (CDBB-TC), for the detection of C. difficile from environmental specimens under aerobic culture conditions. The sensitivity and specificity of CDBB-TC (under aerobic culture conditions) were compared to those of CDBB (under anaerobic culture conditions) for the recovery of C. difficile from swabs collected from hospital room surfaces. CDBB-TC was significantly more sensitive than CDBB for recovering environmental C. difficile (36/41 [88%] versus 21/41 [51%], respectively; P = 0.006). C. difficile latex agglutination, an enzyme immunoassay for toxins A and B or glutamate dehydrogenase, and a PCR for toxin B genes were all effective as confirmatory tests. For 477 total environmental cultures, the specificity of CDBB-TC versus that of CDBB based upon false-positive yellow-color development of the medium without recovery of C. difficile was 100% (0 false-positive results) versus 96% (18 false-positive results), respectively. False-positive cultures for CDBB were attributable to the growth of anaerobic non-C. difficile organisms that did not grow in CDBB-TC. Our results suggest that CDBB-TC provides a sensitive and selective medium for the recovery of C. difficile organisms from environmental samples, without the need for anaerobic culture conditions. Copyright © 2014, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  18. 33 CFR 148.710 - What environmental conditions must be satisfied?

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... to prevent or minimize adverse impacts on the marine environment (33 U.S.C. 1503(c)(3), 1504(f) and..., environmental quality, protection from the threat of terrorist attack and other subversive activity against...

  19. 77 FR 56253 - 60th Meeting: RTCA Special Committee 135, Environmental Conditions and Test Procedures for...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-09-12

    .... ADDRESSES: The meeting will be held at FAA Aircraft Certification Office, 2601 Meacham Blvd., Ft. Worth, TX... rotorcraft DO-160 environmental qualification of equipment Review open proposal's for User's Guide's Review...

  20. Prediction of Hydrolysis Products of Organic Chemicals under Environmental pH Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheminformatics-based software tools can predict the molecular structure of transformation products using a library of transformation reaction schemes. This paper presents the development of such a library for abiotic hydrolysis of organic chemicals under environmentally relevant...

  1. Effects of Environmental Conditions on Activity, Feeding, and Body Weight in Male and Female Adolescent Rats

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Tomchesson, Joshua L

    2006-01-01

    .... Responses to environmental enrichment included: body weight (BW), Body Mass Index score (BMI), Lee Index score (LI), consumption of standard rat chow, Oreo cookies, and Lays potato chips, and physical activity...

  2. Studies on the environmental conditions of tidal ponds in the Ramanthuruth Island (Cochin)

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Sankaranarayanan, V.N.; Kumaran, S.; Balasubramanian, T.; Stephen, R.; Panampunnayil, S.U.

    Environmental characteristics of certain enclosures and tidal ponds in Ramanthuruth Island, Kerala, India where prawns grow in abundance were studied. Various parameters such as temperature, salinity, pH, Eh, dissolved oxygen, nutrients, chlorophyll...

  3. Governing environmental conflicts in China : Under what conditions do local governments compromise?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Li, Yanwei; Koppenjan, Joop; Verweij, Stefan

    2016-01-01

    In recent years, governing environmental conflicts concerning the planning, construction, and operation of urban facilities has increasingly become a challenge for Chinese local governments. Chinese governments seek adequate responses to deal with these conflicts, for instance by ignoring criticism

  4. Governing environmental conflicts in China: Under what conditions do local government compromise?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Y. Li (Yanwei); J.F.M. Koppenjan (Joop); S. Verweij (Stefan)

    2016-01-01

    markdownabstractIn recent years, governing environmental conflicts concerning the planning, construction, and operation of urban facilities has increasingly become a challenge for Chinese local governments. Chinese governments seek adequate responses to deal with these conflicts, for instance by

  5. Effects of Lead Exposure, Environmental Conditions, and Metapopulation Processes on Population Dynamics of Spectacled Eiders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flint, Paul L.; Grand, James B.; Petersen, Margaret; Rockwell, Robert F.

    2016-01-01

    Spectacled eider Somateria fischeri numbers have declined and they are considered threatened in accordance with the US Endangered Species Act throughout their range. We synthesized the available information for spectacled eiders to construct deterministic, stochastic, and metapopulation models for this species that incorporated current estimates of vital rates such as nest success, adult survival, and the impact of lead poisoning on survival. Elasticities of our deterministic models suggested that the populations would respond most dramatically to changes in adult female survival and that the reductions in adult female survival related to lead poisoning were locally important. We also examined the sensitivity of the population to changes in lead exposure rates. With the knowledge that some vital rates vary with environmental conditions, we cast stochastic models that mimicked observed variation in productivity. We also used the stochastic model to examine the probability that a specific population will persist for periods of up to 50 y. Elasticity analysis of these models was consistent with that for the deterministic models, with perturbations to adult female survival having the greatest effect on population projections. When used in single population models, demographic data for some localities predicted rapid declines that were inconsistent with our observations in the field. Thus, we constructed a metapopulation model and examined the predictions for local subpopulations and the metapopulation over a wide range of dispersal rates. Using the metapopulation model, we were able to simulate the observed stability of local subpopulations as well as that of the metapopulation. Finally, we developed a global metapopulation model that simulates periodic winter habitat limitation, similar to that which might be experienced in years of heavy sea ice in the core wintering area of spectacled eiders in the central Bering Sea. Our metapopulation analyses suggested that no

  6. Interaction of ribonucleotides with oxide and silicate minerals under varying environmental conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feuillie, C.; Sverjensky, D. A.; Hazen, R. M.

    2013-12-01

    Large quantities of nucleic acids are found in natural environments, released after the death of an organism and subsequent cell lysis [1]. Nucleic acids are known to adsorb on mineral surfaces [2, 3, 4], which protect them from degradation, whether enzymatic [5, 6] or UV-mediated [7]. It may then contribute to the extracellular genetic pool available in soils to microorganisms for horizontal gene transfers [8]. In order to better understand the behaviour of extracellular nucleic acids in soils, we have investigated the interactions between nucleotides, 5'-GMP, 5'-CMP, 5'-AMP and 5'-UMP, and α-alumina as a model compound for Al in six-fold coordination in soil minerals. We carried out batch adsorption experiments over a wide range of pH, ionic strength and surface loading. Alumina adsorbs high amounts of nucleotides > 2 μmol/m2. In similar environmental conditions, swelling clays such as nontronite and montmorillonite adsorb less than 0.1 μmol/m2 if the total surface area is taken under consideration. However, if only the edges of clay particles are considered, the amount of nucleotides adsorbed reaches values between 1.2 and 2 μmol/m2 [9], similar to the alumina and consistent with ';oxide-like' surface sites on the edges of the clay particles. Surface complexation modeling enabled us to predict the speciation of the surface species on the alumina, as well as the stoichiometry and thermodynamic equilibrium constants for the adsorption of nucleotides. We used the extended triple-layer model (ETLM), that takes into account the electrical work linked to the desorption of chemisorbed water molecules during the formation of inner-sphere complexes. Two surface species are thought to form on the surface of corundum: a monodentate inner-sphere complex, dominant at pH Journal of Astrobiology 3(1), 17-19 [8] Levy-Booth et al. (2007), Soil Biol. Biochem. 39, 2977-2991. [9] Feuillie et al. (2013), Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta (in press)

  7. Fatigue Crack Growth Analysis Under Spectrum Loading in Various Environmental Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mikheevskiy, S.; Glinka, G.; Lee, E.

    2013-03-01

    model. The method can be also used to predict fatigue crack growth under constant amplitude and spectrum loading in various environmental conditions such as vacuum, air, and corrosive environment providing that appropriate limited constant amplitude fatigue crack growth data obtained in the same environment are available. The proposed methodology is equally suitable for fatigue analysis of smooth, notched, and cracked components.

  8. Suboptimal care and maternal mortality among foreign-born women in Sweden

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Esscher, Annika; Binder-Finnema, Pauline; Bødker, Birgit

    2014-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Several European countries report differences in risk of maternal mortality between immigrants from low- and middle-income countries and host country women. The present study identified suboptimal factors related to care-seeking, accessibility, and quality of care for maternal deaths...... language and suboptimal interpreter system or usage. Inadequate care occurred more often among the foreign-born (p = 0.04), whereas delays in consultation/referral and miscommunication between health care providers where equally common between the two groups. CONCLUSIONS: Suboptimal care factors, major...

  9. Environmental limitation on fitness: Reproduction of laboratory mice in benign and stressful ("tropical") conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beilharz, R G; Mitpaiboon, K

    1994-01-12

    In general, the environment limits the fitness of individual animals, and environmental limitation leads to selection for "optimal", intermediate values for all traits that matter, whether imposed by natural or artificial selection. We compared the reproduction of laboratory mice in a normal and a hot, humid environment to test this claim. Thirty males and 150 females from a non-inbred line adapted to normal conditions were mated twice (the second time after rerandomisation) to produce the experimental animals. Individual experimental mice from each litter were allocated from weaning (3 weeks) either to the normal or hot environment. At 9 to 12 weeks of age these mice were paired, 1 male with 1 female, until the female had a chance to have 2 litters. 354 pairs in the normal and 362 pairs in the hot environment were mated. All living progeny were weaned at 3 weeks. Average values of reproductive traits, phenotypic correlations between traits, and heritability estimates for many traits were found in each environment. Negative correlations (trade-offs) between litter number and weight of individual progeny in both environments demonstrated clearly that fitness was limited even in the normal laboratory situation. All quantitative measures of reproduction were lower in the hot room showing that it was more stressful. Yet size of individual young and their survival was not reduced. This may be an adaptive mechanism restricted to housemice. Lower heritability estimates in first than in second parities for quantitative measures of litter size show that while the mouse is still growing she has fewer resources available for reproduction, making her more susceptible to environmental stress. This challenges accepted wisdom that animal breeders should select their animals when they are young. They are least likely to respond then. We believe that natural selection causes animals always to push their fitness (reproduction and survival of the progeny) against a limit set by their

  10. Diversity and composition of Trichoptera (Insecta larvae assemblages in streams with different environmental conditions at Serra da Bocaina, Southeastern Brazil

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    Ana Lucia Henriques-Oliveira

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract: Aim The goal of this study is to examine the composition and richness of caddisfly assemblages in streams at the Serra da Bocaina Mountains, Southeastern Brazil, and to identify the main environmental variables, affecting caddisfly assemblages at the streams with different conditions of land use. Methods The sampling was conducted in 19 streams during September and October 2007. All sites were characterized physiographically by application of environmental assessment protocol to Atlantic Forest streams and by some physical and chemical parameters. Of the 19 streams sampled, six were classified as reference, six streams as intermediate (moderate anthropic impact and seven streams as poor (strong anthropic impact. In each site, a multi-habitat sampling was taken with a kick sampler net. The sample was composed by 20 units, each one corresponded to 1 m2 of collected substrate, corresponding 20 m2 of sampling area. The material was placed in a plastic container (500 µm of mesh, washed, homogenized and sub-sampled. For each stream, 6 subsamples were randomly sorted. Results Were collected 2,113 caddisfly larvae, belonging to 12 families and 28 genera. Hydropsychidae and Leptoceridae were the most abundant families, and Smicridea was the most abundant genus. Sorensen’s index results showed that the streams studied were grouped according to environmental integrity. The Indicator Species Analysis showed only characteristic taxa to reference streams. Canonical Correspondence Analysis showed that caddisfly assemblage was strongly influenced by nitrate concentration, pH and condition of riparian vegetation. Multiple regression analysis indicated significant correlations to five genera with some environmental parameters, besides total abundance of Trichoptera. Conclusions Ours results showed that degree of environmental impact, mainly the nitrate concentration, pH, and condition of cover vegetation acted as a major factor in determining the

  11. Patterns of marijuana and tobacco use associated with suboptimal self-rated health among US adult ever users of marijuana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James Tsai

    2017-06-01

    In conclusion, among adult ever users of marijuana, current tobacco use is high and strongly associated with suboptimal SRH; regular marijuana smoking with or without current tobacco use is significantly associated with suboptimal SRH.

  12. conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Venkatesulu

    1996-01-01

    Full Text Available Solutions of initial value problems associated with a pair of ordinary differential systems (L1,L2 defined on two adjacent intervals I1 and I2 and satisfying certain interface-spatial conditions at the common end (interface point are studied.

  13. Clinical, cardiopulmonary and haemocytological effects of xylazine in goats after acute exposure to different environmental temperature and humidity conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E.G.M. Mogoa

    2000-07-01

    Full Text Available This study was carried out to assess the influence of xylazine administration on clinical, cardiopulmonary and haemocytological variables after acute exposure to different environmental conditions. Xylazine hydrochloride was administered intravenously at 0.1 mg/kg body mass to 6 clinically healthy, castrated male goats. All animals were exposed for 60 min to 3 sets of climatic conditions: 14 °C, 33% relative humidity; 24 °C, 55% RH, and 34 °C, 65% RH. The variables that were measured for a period of 60 min after xylazine administration were sedation, analgesia, salivation, urination, ventilation rate, heart-rate, mean arterial blood pressure, oesophageal temperature, haematocrit, mean corpuscular volume and mean corpuscular haemoglobin concentration. Xylazine induced sedation, analgesia, salivation and urination independently of the 3 environmental conditions. Environment had no influence on the onset, duration and recovery from sedation. In the 14 °C environment, xylazine resulted in a significant decrease in ventilation and heart-rate from baseline values. Significant changes in mean arterial blood pressure, haemoglobin concentration, mean corpuscular volume, haematocrit and red cell count were observed in the 3 environments. Total plasma protein was significantly altered at 24 °C and 34 °C. Acute exposure of goats to different environmental conditions had no significant influence on the clinical, cardiopulmonary and haemocytological variables. Physiological changes induced by xylazine were therefore independent of the environment.

  14. Are yolk androgens adjusted to environmental conditions? A test in two seabirds that lay single-egg clutches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Addison, BriAnne; Benowitz-Fredericks, Z Morgan; Hipfner, J Mark; Kitaysky, Alexander S

    2008-08-01

    It is widely believed that female birds strategically allocate androgens to yolk in the manner that best equips offspring for feeding conditions during their development. Because most avian studies have focused on multi-egg clutch species, and interpreted results within the framework of sibling competition, we still know little about how yolk androgens might be allocated in direct response to environmental conditions. Most oceanic birds are long-lived and lay single-egg clutches, and their breeding success is tightly linked to highly variable marine production. That combination: a variable breeding environment, long lives, and single-egg clutches, makes oceanic birds good subjects to test hypotheses about yolk androgen allocation strategies. We measured concentrations of two yolk androgens, androstenedione (A4) and testosterone (T), in the single-egg clutches laid by early-laying Cassin's (Ptychoramphus aleuticus) and rhinoceros (Cerorhinca monocerata) auklets at Triangle Island, British Columbia, Canada, in 2002-2004. Environmental conditions including sea-surface temperatures and the timing and intensity of marine primary production varied over the 3 years, and in response, both the timing and success of seabird breeding varied. As in other avian species, concentrations of A4 and T varied markedly among individual eggs in both species (by factors of 3-8), yet contrary to expectation, little of the variation could be attributed to year effects. The high interindividual variation and the lack of interannual variation suggest a non-adaptive explanation for yolk androgen deposition relative to environmental conditions in these species.

  15. Effects of fire frequency on litter decomposition as mediated by changes to litter chemistry and soil environmental conditions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cari D Ficken

    Full Text Available Litter quality and soil environmental conditions are well-studied drivers influencing decomposition rates, but the role played by disturbance legacy, such as fire history, in mediating these drivers is not well understood. Fire history may impact decomposition directly, through changes in soil conditions that impact microbial function, or indirectly, through shifts in plant community composition and litter chemistry. Here, we compared early-stage decomposition rates across longleaf pine forest blocks managed with varying fire frequencies (annual burns, triennial burns, fire-suppression. Using a reciprocal transplant design, we examined how litter chemistry and soil characteristics independently and jointly influenced litter decomposition. We found that both litter chemistry and soil environmental conditions influenced decomposition rates, but only the former was affected by historical fire frequency. Litter from annually burned sites had higher nitrogen content than litter from triennially burned and fire suppression sites, but this was correlated with only a modest increase in decomposition rates. Soil environmental conditions had a larger impact on decomposition than litter chemistry. Across the landscape, decomposition differed more along soil moisture gradients than across fire management regimes. These findings suggest that fire frequency has a limited effect on litter decomposition in this ecosystem, and encourage extending current decomposition frameworks into disturbed systems. However, litter from different species lost different masses due to fire, suggesting that fire may impact decomposition through the preferential combustion of some litter types. Overall, our findings also emphasize the important role of spatial variability in soil environmental conditions, which may be tied to fire frequency across large spatial scales, in driving decomposition rates in this system.

  16. Use of response surface methodology to optimise environmental stress conditions on Penicillium glabrum, a food spoilage mould.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nevarez, Laurent; Vasseur, Valérie; Debaets, Stella; Barbier, Georges

    2010-01-01

    Fungi are ubiquitous microorganisms often associated with spoilage and biodeterioration of a large variety of foods and feedstuffs. Their growth may be influenced by temporary changes in intrinsic or environmental factors such as temperature, water activity, pH, preservatives, atmosphere composition, all of which may represent potential sources of stress. Molecular-based analyses of their physiological responses to environmental conditions would help to better manage the risk of alteration and potential toxicity of food products. However, before investigating molecular stress responses, appropriate experimental stress conditions must be precisely defined. Penicillium glabrum is a filamentous fungus widely present in the environment and frequently isolated in the food processing industry as a contaminant of numerous products. Using response surface methodology, the present study evaluated the influence of two environmental factors (temperature and pH) on P. glabrum growth to determine 'optimised' environmental stress conditions. For thermal and pH shocks, a large range of conditions was applied by varying factor intensity and exposure time according to a two-factorial central composite design. Temperature and exposure duration varied from 30 to 50 °C and from 10 min to 230 min, respectively. The effects of interaction between both variables were observed on fungal growth. For pH, the duration of exposure, from 10 to 230 min, had no significant effect on fungal growth. Experiments were thus carried out on a range of pH from 0.15 to 12.50 for a single exposure time of 240 min. Based on fungal growth results, a thermal shock of 120 min at 40 °C or a pH shock of 240 min at 1.50 or 9.00 may therefore be useful to investigate stress responses to non-optimal conditions. Copyright © 2010 The British Mycological Society. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Spaceflight-related suboptimal conditions can accentuate the altered gravity response of Drosophila transcriptome

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Herranz, R.; Benguría, A.; Laván, D.A.; López-Vidriero, I.; Gasset, G.; Javier Medina, F.; van Loon, J.J.W.A.; Marco, R.

    2010-01-01

    Genome-wide transcriptional profiling shows that reducing gravity levels during Drosophila metamorphosis in the International Space Station (ISS) causes important alterations in gene expression: a large set of differentially expressed genes (DEGs) are observed compared to 1g controls. However, the

  18. Autofluorescence of atmospheric bioaerosols - Biological standard particles and the influence of environmental conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pöhlker, Christopher; Huffman, J. Alex; Förster, Jan-David; Pöschl, Ulrich

    2013-04-01

    standard bioparticles (pollen, fungal spores, and bacteria) as well as atmospherically relevant chemical substances. We addressed the sensitivity and selectivity of autofluorescence based online techniques. Moreover, we investigated the influence of environmental conditions, such as relative humidity and oxidizing agents in the atmosphere, on the autofluorescence signature of standard bioparticles. Our results will support the molecular understanding and quantitative interpretation of data obtained by real-time FBAP instrumentation [5,6]. [1] Elbert, W., Taylor, P. E., Andreae, M. O., & Pöschl, U. (2007). Atmos. Chem. Phys., 7, 4569-4588. [2] Huffman, J. A., Treutlein, B., & Pöschl, U. (2010). Atmos. Chem. Phys., 10, 3215-3233. [3] Pöschl, U., et al. (2010). Science, 329, 1513-1516. [4] Lakowicz, J., Principles of fluorescence spectroscopy, Plenum publishers, New York, 1999. [5] Pöhlker, C., Huffman, J. A., & Pöschl, U., (2012). Atmos. Meas. Tech., 5, 37-71. [6] Pöhlker, C., Huffman, J. A., Förster J.-D., & Pöschl, U., (2012) in preparation.

  19. Functional ecology of saltglands in shorebirds: flexible responses to variable environmental conditions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gutiérrez, J.S.; Dietz, M.W.; Masero, J.A.; Gill, R.E.; Dekinga, A.; Battley, P.F.; Sánchez-Guzmán, J.M.; Piersma, T.

    2012-01-01

    1. Birds of marine environments have specialized glands to excrete salt, the saltglands. Located on the skull between the eyes, the size of these organs is expected to reflect their demand, which will vary with water turnover rates as a function of environmental (heat load, salinity of prey and

  20. Functional ecology of saltglands in shorebirds : flexible responses to variable environmental conditions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gutierrez, Jorge S.; Dietz, Maurine W.; Masero, Jose A.; Gill, Robert E.; Dekinga, Anne; Battley, Phil F.; Sanchez-Guzman, Juan M.; Piersma, Theunis; Dawson, Alistair

    1. Birds of marine environments have specialized glands to excrete salt, the saltglands. Located on the skull between the eyes, the size of these organs is expected to reflect their demand, which will vary with water turnover rates as a function of environmental (heat load, salinity of prey and

  1. Environmental conditions and human drivers for changes to North Ethiopian mountain landscapes over 145 years

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nyssen, J.; Frankl, A.; Haile, M.; Hurni, H.; Descheemaeker, K.K.E.; Crummey, D.; Ritler, A.; Portner, B.; Nievergelt, B.; Moeyersons, J.; Munro, N.; Deckers, J.; Billi, P.; Poesen, J.

    2014-01-01

    As quantitative or spatially distributed studies of environmental change over truly long-term periods of more than 100 years are extremely rare, we re-photographed 361 landscapes that appear on historical photographs (1868–1994) within a 40,000 km2 study area in northern Ethiopia. Visible evidence

  2. Characteristics of fruiting of Catalpa bignonioides under conditions of environmental pollution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    М. V. Leppik

    2007-04-01

    Full Text Available Influence of the industrial air pollution on traits of Catalpa bignonioides Walt. fruiting has been studied. The fruiting quality of C. bignonioides plantsbecame worse under environmental contamination by emissions of pipe factory and motor transport. The coefficient of fruiting was reduced owing to diminution of the fruits quantity. Moreover the dimensions and form of fruits changed.

  3. Characteristics of fruiting of Catalpa bignonioides under conditions of environmental pollution

    OpenAIRE

    М. V. Leppik

    2007-01-01

    Influence of the industrial air pollution on traits of Catalpa bignonioides Walt. fruiting has been studied. The fruiting quality of C. bignonioides plants became worse under environmental contamination by emissions of pipe factory and motor transport. The coefficient of fruiting was reduced owing to diminution of the fruits quantity. Moreover the dimensions and form of fruits changed.

  4. How to improve housing conditions of laboratory animals: The possibilities of environmental refinement

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Baumans, V.; Loo, P.L.P. van

    2013-01-01

    Housing systems for captive animals have often been designed on the basis of economic and ergonomic considerations, such as equipment, costs, space, workload, ability to observe the animals and to maintain a certain degree of hygiene, with little or no consideration for animal welfare. Environmental

  5. ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS IN NORTHERN GULF OF MEXICO COASTAL WATERS FOLLOWING HURRICANE KATRINA

    Science.gov (United States)

    On the morning of August 29, 2005 Hurricane Katrina struck the coast of Louisiana, between New Orleans and Biloxi, Mississippi, as a strong category three hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale. The massive winds and flooding had the potential for a tremendous environmental impac...

  6. The effect of environmental conditions on extracellular protease activity in controlled fermentations of Aspergillus niger

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Braaksma, M.; Smilde, A.K.; Werf, M.J. van der; Punt, P.J.

    2009-01-01

    Proteolytic degradation by host proteases is one of the key issues in the application of filamentous fungi for non-fungal protein production. In this study the influence of several environmental factors on the production of extracellular proteases of Aspergillus niger was investigated systematically

  7. Sustainability and environmental assessment of fertigation in an intensive olive grove under Mediterranean conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Over application of water and nitrogen is a major concern for intensive olive groves in South of Portugal. In this study, field experimental measurements were integrated with a system model, Root Zone Water Quality Model (RZWQM) to assess the sustainability and environmental impact of fertigation in...

  8. Effect of Using Suboptimal Alignments in Template-Based Protein Structure Prediction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Hao; Kihara, Daisuke

    2010-01-01

    Computational protein structure prediction remains a challenging task in protein bioinformatics. In the recent years, the importance of template-based structure prediction is increasing due to the growing number of protein structures solved by the structural genomics projects. To capitalize the significant efforts and investments paid on the structural genomics projects, it is urgent to establish effective ways to use the solved structures as templates by developing methods for exploiting remotely related proteins that cannot be simply identified by homology. In this work, we examine the effect of employing suboptimal alignments in template-based protein structure prediction. We showed that suboptimal alignments are often more accurate than the optimal one, and such accurate suboptimal alignments can occur even at a very low rank of the alignment score. Suboptimal alignments contain a significant number of correct amino acid residue contacts. Moreover, suboptimal alignments can improve template-based models when used as input to Modeller. Finally, we employ suboptimal alignments for handling a contact potential in a probabilistic way in a threading program, SUPRB. The probabilistic contacts strategy outperforms the partly thawed approach which only uses the optimal alignment in defining residue contacts and also the reranking strategy, which uses the contact potential in reranking alignments. The comparison with existing methods in the template-recognition test shows that SUPRB is very competitive and outperform existing methods. PMID:21058297

  9. MULTIVARIATE ANALYSIS OF THE DISPLACEMENTS OF A CONCRETE DAM WITH RESPECT TO THE ACTION OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sheila Regina Oro

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available A review of the concrete dam’s structural performance is a complex issue comprised of many dimensions. This article proposes a method to assist in monitoring the displacements of structures and foundations of dams, considering the action of environmental conditions. Multivariate techniques are used to analyze the data pendulums, extensometer bases and multiple rods extensometer, along with environmental variables of the concrete surface temperature, ambient temperature and the reservoir water level. Specifically applies to Canonical Correlation Analysis to evaluate the influence of environmental variables in the displacement of structures and foundations. Factor Analysis identifies the factors inherent to the variability of the data. This technique makes it possible to order the variables considering the action of factors. This applies also to Cluster Analysis on the data of dates of measurements, according to the similarities present in the observations. Then, Discriminant Analysis evaluates the formed groups for uniformity. The results demonstrate that the method can distinguish the dam responses and identify the effects of variations in environmental conditions over the displacements of structures and foundations.

  10. Tuber melanosporum spread within sub-optimal climatic zones is controlled by fruiting triggers and not mycorrhiza survival

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul W. Thomas

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Tuber melanosporum is the most valuable of all cultivatable truffle species. Farming of this species spans every continent with the exception of Antarctica. Tuber aestivum (syn. T. uncinatum and Tuber brumale are truffle species that have similar host plant preference and a similar affinity for calcareous soils as T. melanosporum, but occur over a broader geographic zone. The geographic limit of T. melanosporum is thought to be climatically dictated but it is not known whether this is due to an impact on mycorrhizal survival or climatically-derived fruiting triggers. Here, data is compiled from five cultivated research sites in the climatically sub-optimal conditions of the UK in order to address this question. Here we show: (iTuber melanosporum mycorrhiza can survive and grow in sub-optimal climatic conditions. (iiIt is climatically-derived fruiting triggers and not ectomycorrhiza survival that dictate the climatic preferences and geographic spread of T. melanosporum. (iiiImportant climatic parameters for potential fruiting triggers are sunshine hours, summer rainfall and summer temperatures.   The data presented here not only aid our understanding of the ecological parameters of T. melanosporum but also have a practical application for truffle cultivators in choosing suitable locations for a plantation.

  11. Variation in phenology, growth, and wood anatomy of Toona sinensis and Toona ciliata in relation to different environmental conditions

    OpenAIRE

    Heinrich, Ingo; Banks, John Charles Gripper

    2006-01-01

    Tree-ring proxy data from subtropical to tropical Australasia are valuable though rare sources for climate reconstructions. Toona sinensis (A. Juss.) M. Roem. and Toona ciliata M. Roem. occurring naturally in this region are among the most promising tree species for future tree-ring research. However, little is known about their phenological behaviors and the influence of environmental conditions on their intraseasonal growth and wood anatomical properties. Growth experiments were conducted o...

  12. Measuring health outcomes of a multidisciplinary care approach in individuals with chronic environmental conditions using an abbreviated symptoms questionnaire

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roy Fox

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available Roy Fox1, Tara Sampalli1, Jonathan Fox11Nova Scotia Environmental Health Centre, Fall River, NS, CanadaAbstract: The Nova Scotia Environmental Health Centre is a treatment facility for individuals with chronic environmental conditions such as multiple chemical sensitivity, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, chronic respiratory conditions and in some cases chronic pain. The premise of care is to provide a patient-centred multidisciplinary care approach leading to self-management strategies. In order to measure the outcome of the treatment in these complex problems, with overlapping diagnoses, symptoms in many body systems and suspected environmental triggers, a detailed symptoms questionnaire was developed specifically for this patient population and validated. Results from a pilot study in which an abbreviated symptoms questionnaire based on the top reported symptoms captured in previous research was used to measure the efficacy of a multidisciplinary care approach in individuals with multiple chemical sensitivity are presented in this paper. The purpose of this study was to examine the extent, type and patterns of changes over time in the top reported symptoms with treatment measured using the abbreviated symptoms questionnaire. A total of 183 active and 109 discharged patients participated in the study where the health status was measured at different time periods of follow up since the commencement of treatment at the Centre. The findings from this study were successful in generating an initial picture of the nature and type of changes in these symptoms. For instance, symptoms such as difficulty concentrating, sinus conditions and tiredness showed early improvement, within the first 6 months of being in treatment, while others, such as fatigue, hoarseness or loss of voice, took longer while others showed inconsistent changes warranting further enquiry. A controlled longitudinal study is planned to confirm the findings of the pilot study

  13. Accelerated Degradation Test and Predictive Failure Analysis of B10 Copper-Nickel Alloy under Marine Environmental Conditions

    OpenAIRE

    Bo Sun; Tianyuan Ye; Qiang Feng; Jinghua Yao; Mumeng Wei

    2015-01-01

    This paper studies the corrosion behavior of B10 copper-nickel alloy in marine environment. Accelerated degradation test under marine environmental conditions was designed and performed based on the accelerated testing principle and the corrosion degradation mechanism. With the prolongation of marine corrosion time, the thickness of Cu2O film increased gradually. Its corrosion product was Cu2(OH)3Cl, which increased in quantity over time. Cl− was the major factor responsible for the marine c...

  14. Survival of Moss Reproductive Structures under Simulated Martian Environmental Conditions and Extreme Thermal Stress: Vibrational Spectroscopic Study and Astrobiological Implications

    OpenAIRE

    Gómez Gómez, José María; Estébanez, Belén; Sanz-Arranz, Aurelio; Mateo-Martí, Eva; Medina, Jesús; Rull, Fernando

    2016-01-01

    The principal goal of astrobiology is the search for extraterrestrial life forms. A key aspect is the study of the ability of different kinds of terrestrial organisms to support simulated extraterrestrial environmental conditions. Mosses are multicellular green plants, poorly studied from an astrobiological perspective. In this paper, we report experimental results obtained using two species of moss, which demonstrate that both the spores of the moss Funaria hygrometrica as well a...

  15. Conditions for addressing environmental determinants of health behavior in intersectoral policy networks: A fuzzy set Qualitative Comparative Analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peters, D T J M; Verweij, S; Grêaux, K; Stronks, K; Harting, J

    2017-12-01

    Improving health requires changes in the social, physical, economic and political determinants of health behavior. For the realization of policies that address these environmental determinants, intersectoral policy networks are considered necessary for the pooling of resources to implement different policy instruments. However, such network diversity may increase network complexity and therefore hamper network performance. Network complexity may be reduced by network management and the provision of financial resources. This study examined whether network diversity - amidst the other conditions - is indeed needed to address environmental determinants of health behavior. We included 25 intersectoral policy networks in Dutch municipalities aimed at reducing overweight, smoking, and alcohol/drugs abuse. For our fuzzy set Qualitative Comparative Analysis we used data from three web-based surveys among (a) project leaders regarding network diversity and size (n = 38); (b) project leaders and project partners regarding management (n = 278); and (c) implementation professionals regarding types of environmental determinants addressed (n = 137). Data on budgets were retrieved from project application forms. Contrary to their intentions, most policy networks typically addressed personal determinants. If the environment was addressed too, it was mostly the social environment. To address environmental determinants of health behavior, network diversity (>50% of the actors are non-public health) was necessary in networks that were either small (network diversity, environmental determinants also were addressed by small networks with large budgets, and by large networks with small budgets, when both provided network management. We conclude that network diversity is important - although not necessary - for resource pooling to address environmental determinants of health behavior, but only effective in the presence of network management. Our findings may support intersectoral

  16. Assessment of the risk of failure of high voltage substations due to environmental conditions and pollution on insulators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castillo Sierra, Rafael; Oviedo-Trespalacios, Oscar; Candelo, John E; Soto, Jose D

    2015-07-01

    Pollution on electrical insulators is one of the greatest causes of failure of substations subjected to high levels of salinity and environmental pollution. Considering leakage current as the main indicator of pollution on insulators, this paper focuses on establishing the effect of the environmental conditions on the risk of failure due to pollution on insulators and determining the significant change in the magnitude of the pollution on the insulators during dry and humid periods. Hierarchical segmentation analysis was used to establish the effect of environmental conditions on the risk of failure due to pollution on insulators. The Kruskal-Wallis test was utilized to determine the significant changes in the magnitude of the pollution due to climate periods. An important result was the discovery that leakage current was more common on insulators during dry periods than humid ones. There was also a higher risk of failure due to pollution during dry periods. During the humid period, various temperatures and wind directions produced a small change in the risk of failure. As a technical result, operators of electrical substations can now identify the cause of an increase in risk of failure due to pollution in the area. The research provides a contribution towards the behaviour of the leakage current under conditions similar to those of the Colombian Caribbean coast and how they affect the risk of failure of the substation due to pollution.

  17. Neonatal antigen-presenting cells are functionally more quiescent in children born under traditional compared with modern environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lisciandro, Joanne G; Prescott, Susan L; Nadal-Sims, Marie G; Devitt, Catherine J; Richmond, Peter C; Pomat, William; Siba, Peter M; Holt, Patrick G; Strickland, Deborah H; van den Biggelaar, Anita H J

    2012-11-01

    One explanation for the high burden of allergic and autoimmune diseases in industrialized countries is inappropriate immune development under modern environmental conditions. There is increasing evidence that the process of immune deviation already begins in utero, but the underlying immunologic mechanisms are not clear. We sought to identify differences in the function of neonatal antigen-presenting cells (APCs) in children born in settings that are more traditional versus those of modern societies. Cord blood mononuclear cells were collected from newborns from Papua New Guinea (PNG; traditional) and Australia (modern) and compared for differences in APCs and T-cell phenotype and function. Australian cord naive T cells (CD4(+)CD25(-)CD127(+) cells) showed an enhanced and more rapid proliferative response in an autologous, APC-dependent culture system, a result of differences in neonatal APCs rather than T-cell function. This included an increased capacity to process antigen and to upregulate activation markers after stimulation. In contrast, resting PNG APCs exhibited higher baseline levels of activation and inhibitory markers and were less responsive or nonresponsive to stimulation in vitro. This study supports the hypothesis that prenatal environments can influence the developing immune system in utero. Children born under modern environmental conditions exhibit increased APC reactivity at birth compared with children born under traditional environmental conditions. The functionally more quiescent nature of PNG neonatal APCs might protect against the development of harmful inflammatory responses in early life. Copyright © 2012 American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. Published by Mosby, Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Suboptimal maximum likelihood detection of on-off keying for a wireless optical communication system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Ruijie; Ding, Shengli; Dang, Anhong

    2017-05-01

    This paper investigates a detection scheme without channel state information for wireless optical communication systems. Employing conventional on-off keying signals, we supposed that conditional probability density function P(r|0) is much bigger than P(r|1) when r<0. Under this assumption, the suboptimal maximum likelihood scheme is obtained by utilizing the probability density function without channel information. Theoretical analysis shows the performance of the proposed scheme is close to the maximum likelihood symbol-by-symbol detection. Compared with the maximum likelihood symbol by symbol detection, Monte Carlo simulations show that the performance of the proposed scheme is about 0.62 dB loss for a gamma-gamma channel with a Rytov variance of 1 at the signal-to-noise ratio of 2 dB, but the efficient algorithm makes the real-time implementation of detection based on maximum likelihood feasible. Besides, the experiment is set up under 2 Gbps, and the experimental results match well with that of the theory and simulation.

  19. Testing a new multigroup inference approach to reconstructing past environmental conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria RIERADEVALL

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available A new, quantitative, inference model for environmental reconstruction (transfer function, based for the first time on the simultaneous analysis of multigroup species, has been developed. Quantitative reconstructions based on palaeoecological transfer functions provide a powerful tool for addressing questions of environmental change in a wide range of environments, from oceans to mountain lakes, and over a range of timescales, from decades to millions of years. Much progress has been made in the development of inferences based on multiple proxies but usually these have been considered separately, and the different numeric reconstructions compared and reconciled post-hoc. This paper presents a new method to combine information from multiple biological groups at the reconstruction stage. The aim of the multigroup work was to test the potential of the new approach to making improved inferences of past environmental change by improving upon current reconstruction methodologies. The taxonomic groups analysed include diatoms, chironomids and chrysophyte cysts. We test the new methodology using two cold-environment training-sets, namely mountain lakes from the Pyrenees and the Alps. The use of multiple groups, as opposed to single groupings, was only found to increase the reconstruction skill slightly, as measured by the root mean square error of prediction (leave-one-out cross-validation, in the case of alkalinity, dissolved inorganic carbon and altitude (a surrogate for air-temperature, but not for pH or dissolved CO2. Reasons why the improvement was less than might have been anticipated are discussed. These can include the different life-forms, environmental responses and reaction times of the groups under study.

  20. Species Diversity Improves the Efficiency of Mercury-Reducing Biofilms under Changing Environmental Conditions

    OpenAIRE

    von Canstein, Harald; Kelly, Sven; Li, Ying; Wagner-Döbler, Irene

    2002-01-01

    Six mercury-resistant environmental proteobacterial isolates and one genetically modified mercury-resistant Pseudomonas putida strain were analyzed for physiological traits of adaptive relevance in an environment of packed-bed bioreactors designed for the decontamination of mercury-polluted chlor-alkali wastewater. The strains displayed characteristic differences in each trait (i.e., biofilm formation capability, growth rate in mercury contaminated wastewaters, and mercury reduction efficienc...

  1. Introducing a conditional 'Willingness to Pay' index as a quantifier for environmental impact assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Batzias, Fragiskos; Kopsidas, Odysseas

    2012-12-01

    The optimal concentration Copt of a pollutant in the environment can be determined as an equilibrium point in the trade off between (i) environmental cost, due to impact on man/ecosystem/economy, and (ii) economic cost for environmental protection, as it can be expressed by Pigouvian tax. These two conflict variables are internalized within the same techno-economic objective function of total cost, which is minimized. In this work, the first conflict variable is represented by a Willingness To Pay (WTP) index. A methodology is developed for the estimation of this index by using fuzzy sets to count for uncertainty. Implementation of this methodology is presented, concerning odor pollution of air round an olive pomace oil mill. The ASTM E544-99 (2004) 'Standard Practice for Referencing Suprathreshold Odor Intensity' has been modified to serve as a basis for testing, while a network of the quality standards, required for the realization/application of this 'Practice', is also presented. Last, sensitivity analysis of Copt as regards the impact of (i) the increase of environmental information/sensitization and (ii) the decrease of interest rate reveals a shifting of Copt to lower and higher values, respectively; certain positive and negative implications (i.e., shifting of Copt to lower and higher values, respectively) caused by socio-economic parameters are also discussed.

  2. Condition-Based Maintenance Strategy for Production Systems Generating Environmental Damage

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Tlili

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available We consider production systems which generate damage to environment as they get older and degrade. The system is submitted to inspections to assess the generated environmental damage. The inspections can be periodic or nonperiodic. In case an inspection reveals that the environmental degradation level has exceeded the critical level U, the system is considered in an advanced deterioration state and will have generated significant environmental damage. A corrective maintenance action is then performed to renew the system and clean the environment and a penalty has to be paid. In order to prevent such an undesirable situation, a lower threshold level L is considered to trigger a preventive maintenance action to bring back the system to a state as good as new at a lower cost and without paying the penalty. Two inspection policies are considered (periodic and nonperiodic. For each one of them, a mathematical model and a numerical procedure are developed to determine simultaneously the preventive maintenance (PM threshold L∗ and the inspection sequence which minimize the average long-run cost per time unit. Numerical calculations are performed to illustrate the proposed maintenance policies and highlight their main characteristics with respect to relevant input parameters.

  3. Environmental management zoning for coal mining in mainland China based on ecological and resources conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geng, Haiqing; Chen, Fan; Wang, Zhiyuan; Liu, Jie; Xu, Weihua

    2017-05-01

    The purpose of this research is to establish an environmental management zoning for coal mining industry which is served as a basis for making environmental management policies. Based on the specific impacts of coal mining and regional characteristics of environment and resources, the ecological impact, water resources impact, and arable land impact are chose as the zoning indexes to construct the index system. The ecological sensitivity is graded into three levels of low, medium, and high according to analytical hierarchy processes and gray fixed weight clustering analysis, and the water resources sensitivity is divided into five levels of lower, low, medium, high, and higher according to the weighted sum of sub-indexes, while only the arable land sensitive zone was extracted on the basis of the ratio of arable land to the county or city. By combining the ecological sensitivity zoning and the water resources sensitive zoning and then overlapping the arable-sensitive areas, the mainland China is classified into six types of environmental management zones for coal mining except to the forbidden exploitation areas.

  4. UV reflectance is associated with environmental conditions in Palaearctic Pieris napi (Lepidoptera: Pieridae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stella, David; Pecháček, Pavel; Meyer-Rochow, Victor Benno; Kleisner, Karel

    2016-12-12

    The subject of our investigation was the visual features of wing color with special focus on the UV reflectance in the green-veined white butterfly (Pieris napi). Previous studies had concluded that UV reflectance on dorsal wing surfaces is found only in the female P. napi. Based on UV sensitive photography, we analyzed a correlation between 12 geographic and environmental factors and UV reflectance patterns on 3 patches on the forewings of 407 P. napi specimens from the Palaearctic region. Results had shown that females significantly differ from males: they exhibit a 25% higher UV reflectance. To investigate whether and how UV reflectance levels on the forewings and hindwings of both sexes are influenced by the environment, we performed a principal component analysis (PCA) with several environmental variables. For several variables (in particular, latitude and longitude, mean annual temperature and precipitation, and temperature annual range and altitude), the generalized linear model (GLM) model revealed a significant correlation in both sexes. This suggests a link between UV reflectance levels and the environment and distribution of P. napi. We found that stronger UV reflectance is associated with generally more hostile environments and concluded that large-scale environmental factors influence the UV reflectance on the forewings of both male and female green-veined white butterflies. © 2016 Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  5. Individual consistency and phenotypic plasticity in rockhopper penguins: female but not male body mass links environmental conditions to reproductive investment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dehnhard, Nina; Eens, Marcel; Demongin, Laurent; Quillfeldt, Petra; Poisbleau, Maud

    2015-01-01

    In marine habitats, increasing ocean temperatures due to global climate change may distinctly reduce nutrient and consequently food availability for seabirds. Food availability is a known driver of body mass and reproductive investment in birds, but these traits may also depend on individual effects. Penguins show extreme intra-annual body mass variation and rely on accumulated body reserves for successful breeding. However, no study so far has tested individual consistency and phenotypic responses in body mass and reproductive investment in this taxon. Using a unique dataset on individually marked female and male southern rockhopper penguins (Eudyptes chrysocome chrysocome) across six years, we investigated 1) the individual consistency in body mass (measured at egg laying), body condition and reproductive investment across years, subsequently 2) identified the best-explanatory temperature-related environmental variables for female and male body mass, and 3) tested the effect of female and male body mass on reproductive investment. Body mass, body condition and reproductive investment were all highly repeatable. As body condition should control for the structural size of the birds, the similarly high repeatability estimates for body mass and body condition suggested that the consistent between-individual body mass differences were independent of structural size. This supported the use of body mass for the subsequent analyses. Body mass was higher under colder environmental conditions (positive Southern Annular Mode), but the overall phenotypic response appeared limited. Reproductive investment increased with female but not male body mass. While environmental effects on body mass in our study period were rather small, one can expect that ongoing global climate change will lead to a deterioration of food availability and we might therefore in the long-term expect a phenotypical decline in body mass and reproductive investment.

  6. Impact Damage Localisation with Piezoelectric Sensors under Operational and Environmental Conditions

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Mohammad Saleh Salmanpour; Zahra Sharif Khodaei; M H Ferri Aliabadi

    2017-01-01

    Guided-wave structural health monitoring (SHM) systems with piezoelectric sensors are investigated for localisation of barely visible impact damage in CFRP plates under vibration and different thermal conditions...

  7. Multiple long-term trends and trend reversals dominate environmental conditions in a man-made freshwater reservoir.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Znachor, Petr; Nedoma, Jiří; Hejzlar, Josef; Seďa, Jaromír; Kopáček, Jiří; Boukal, David; Mrkvička, Tomáš

    2017-12-12

    Man-made reservoirs are common across the world and provide a wide range of ecological services. Environmental conditions in riverine reservoirs are affected by the changing climate, catchment-wide processes and manipulations with the water level, and water abstraction from the reservoir. Long-term trends of environmental conditions in reservoirs thus reflect a wider range of drivers in comparison to lakes, which makes the understanding of reservoir dynamics more challenging. We analysed a 32-year time series of 36 environmental variables characterising weather, land use in the catchment, reservoir hydrochemistry, hydrology and light availability in the small, canyon-shaped Římov Reservoir in the Czech Republic to detect underlying trends, trend reversals and regime shifts. To do so, we fitted linear and piecewise linear regression and a regime shift model to the time series of mean annual values of each variable and to principal components produced by Principal Component Analysis. Models were weighted and ranked using Akaike information criterion and the model selection approach. Most environmental variables exhibited temporal changes that included time-varying trends and trend reversals. For instance, dissolved organic carbon showed a linear increasing trend while nitrate concentration or conductivity exemplified trend reversal. All trend reversals and cessations of temporal trends in reservoir hydrochemistry (except total phosphorus concentrations) occurred in the late 1980s and during 1990s as a consequence of dramatic socioeconomic changes. After a series of heavy rains in the late 1990s, an administrative decision to increase the flood-retention volume of the reservoir resulted in a significant regime shift in reservoir hydraulic conditions in 1999. Our analyses also highlight the utility of the model selection framework, based on relatively simple extensions of linear regression, to describe temporal trends in reservoir characteristics. This approach can

  8. Cytoplasmic continuity revisited: closure of septa of the filamentous fungus Schizophyllum commune in response to environmental conditions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arend F van Peer

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Mycelia of higher fungi consist of interconnected hyphae that are compartmentalized by septa. These septa contain large pores that allow streaming of cytoplasm and even organelles. The cytoplasm of such mycelia is therefore considered to be continuous. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here, we show by laser dissection that septa of Schizophyllum commune can be closed depending on the environmental conditions. The most apical septum of growing hyphae was open when this basidiomycete was grown in minimal medium with glucose as a carbon source. In contrast, the second and the third septum were closed in more than 50% and 90% of the cases, respectively. Interestingly, only 24 and 37% of these septa were closed when hyphae were growing in the absence of glucose. Whether a septum was open or closed also depended on physical conditions of the environment or the presence of toxic agents. The first septum closed when hyphae were exposed to high temperature, to hypertonic conditions, or to the antibiotic nourseothricin. In the case of high temperature, septa opened again when the mycelium was placed back to the normal growth temperature. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Taken together, it is concluded that the septal pores of S. commune are dynamic structures that open or close depending on the environmental conditions. Our findings imply that the cytoplasm in the mycelium of a higher fungus is not continuous per se.

  9. Suboptimal asthma care for immigrant children: results of an audit study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Klazinga Niek S

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Little is known on the scope and nature of ethnic inequalities in suboptimal asthma care for children. This study aimed to assess (1 ethnic differences in suboptimal asthma care for children with an asthma exacerbation who consulted a physician, and (2 ethnic differences in the nature of suboptimal care. Methods All children aged 6–16 years who during a period of six months consulted the paediatric department of the Academic Medical Centre-University of Amsterdam or one of the six regional primary care centres with an asthma exacerbation were included. Clinical guidelines were systematically converted to review criteria following the strategy as proposed by the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research. Based upon these review criteria and their experience experts of two multidisciplinary panels retrospectively assessed the quality of care and its (possible failure to prevent the occurrence of asthma exacerbation. Results Only a small number of children (n = 35 were included in the analysis as a result of which the ethnic differences in suboptimal care were not significant. However, the results do indicate immigrant children, in particular 'other non-Western' children (n = 11, more frequently to receive suboptimal care related to the asthma exacerbation when compared to ethnic Dutch children. Furthermore, we found the nature of suboptimal care to differ with under-prescribing in the 'other non-Western' group (n = 11, lack of information exchange between physicians in the Surinamese/Antillean group (n = 12 and lack of education, and counselling of patients and parents in the ethnic Dutch (n = 12 as the most relevant factor. Conclusion Ethnic inequalities in the scope and nature of suboptimal asthma care for children in the Netherlands seem to exist. For the non-western immigrant groups the results indicate the importance of the prescription behaviour of the medical doctor, as well as the supervision by one health care

  10. Seasonal variations of phytoplankton dynamics in Nunatsiavut fjords (Labrador, Canada) and their relationships with environmental conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simo-Matchim, Armelle-Galine; Gosselin, Michel; Blais, Marjolaine; Gratton, Yves; Tremblay, Jean-Éric

    2016-04-01

    We assessed phytoplankton dynamics and its environmental control in four Labrador fjords (Nachvak, Saglek, Okak, and Anaktalak) during summer, early fall and late fall. Primary production and chlorophyll a (chl a) biomass were measured at seven optical depths, including the depth of subsurface chl a maximum (SCM). Phytoplankton abundance, size structure and taxonomy were determined at the SCM. Principal component analysis and non-metric multidimensional scaling were used to analyze relationships between production, biomass and community composition in relation to environmental variables. We observed a marked seasonal variability, with significant differences in phytoplankton structure and function between summer and fall. Surprisingly, primary production and chl a biomass were not significantly different from one fjord to another. The highest values of primary production (1730 mg C m- 2 day- 1) and chl a biomass (96 mg chl a m- 2) were measured during the summer bloom, and those high values indicate that Labrador fjords are highly productive ecosystems. The summer community showed relatively high abundance of nanophytoplankton (2-20 μm) while the fall community was characterized by low primary production and chl a biomass as well as relatively high abundance of picophytoplankton (diatoms and flagellates in summer, whereas the fall community was largely dominated by flagellates. Seasonal variations in phytoplankton dynamics were mainly controlled by the strength of the vertical stratification and by the large differences in day length due to the northerly location of Labrador fjords. This study documents for the very first time phytoplankton structure and function in Labrador fjords, and provides an essential foundation for further research and for monitoring environmental changes in arctic and subarctic coastal areas.

  11. Basic Principles for Calculating Heat Exchanger Characteristics under Conditions of Environmental Heat Losses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. A. Bayrashevsky

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available The paper considers two most characteristic models of heat exchange mechanisms in heaters with due account of environmental heat losses. As a result of executed investigations a list of corresponding engineering formulae has been developed which can be used for determination of heat engineering characteristics of heat exchangers and calculation of heating modes of their operation.Authors of the paper have elaborated a special «Heat Exchanger» programming file that corroborates reliability of the executed analysis and makes it possible to carry out a number of the required calculations.

  12. Effect of Environmental Conditions on the Degradation of Florasulam in Typical Soils of Northern China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Wangcang; Xu, Hongle; Hao, Hongdan; Wu, Renhai; Wang, Hengliang; Lu, Chuantao

    2017-05-01

    The widespread use of florasulam in China makes residues from this herbicide in soil a serious concern due to their potential to pollute the soil environment and groundwater. Accelerating the degradation of these residues will reduce their pollution potential. In this study, we investigated the degradation and adsorption of florasulam in four typical soils in northern China and examined the degradation of florasulam in Inceptisols at different temperatures, soil moisture contents, and pH values, as well as the influence of microorganisms and the use of organic matter and biogas slurry as soil amendments. The half-lives of florasulam in the four soils were 13.6 d (Ultisols), 13.9 d (Vertisols), 15.1 d (Alfisols), and 19.3 d (Inceptisols), and the adsorption ability of the four soils followed the order Inceptisols > Alfisols > Vertisols > Ultisols. Florasulam degradation rates increased as temperature and soil moisture increased and as soil pH decreased (from 8.0 to 6.0). Adding a small amount of organic matter to the soil increased the florasulam degradation rates. The use of biogas slurry also increased the degradation rates. Florasulam half-life in unsterilized soil ( = 19.3 d) was significantly shorter than in sterilized soil ( = 113.4 d). These results provide agricultural producers and environmental managers useful information for reducing the environmental risk associated with florasulam use. Copyright © by the American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil Science Society of America, Inc.

  13. Proper housing conditions in experimental stroke studies—special emphasis on environmental enrichment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mering, Satu; Jolkkonen, Jukka

    2015-01-01

    Environmental enrichment provides laboratory animals with novelty and extra space, allowing different forms of multisensory stimulation ranging from social grouping to enhanced motor activity. At the extreme end of the spectrum, one can have a super-enriched environment. Environmental enrichment is believed to result in improved cognitive and sensorimotor functions both in naïve rodents and in animals with brain lesions such as those occurring after a stroke. Robust behavioral effects in animals which have suffered a stroke are probably related not only to neuronal plasticity in the perilesional cortex but also in remote brain areas. There is emerging evidence to suggest that testing restorative therapies in an enriched environment can maximize treatment effects, e.g., the perilesional milieu seems to be more receptive to concomitant pharmacotherapy and/or cell therapy. This review provides an updated overview on the effect of an enriched environment in stroke animals from the practical points to be considered when planning experiments to the mechanisms explaining why combined therapies can contribute to behavioral improvement in a synergistic manner. PMID:25870536

  14. Changing environmental conditions and applying organic fertilizers in Origanum vulgare L.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murillo-Amador, Bernardo; Morales-Prado, Luis E.; Troyo-Diéguez, Enrique; Córdoba-Matson, Miguel V.; Hernández-Montiel, Luis G.; Rueda-Puente, Edgar O.; Nieto-Garibay, Alejandra

    2015-01-01

    Any improvement in agricultural systems that results in higher production should also reduce negative environmental impacts and enhance sustainability. The aim of this research was to investigate the effect of two different production systems, one open-field and the other shade-enclosure with four bocashi doses, in order to find the best environmental option in terms of yield, physiological and morphometric characteristics in one oregano (Origanum vulgare L.) cultivar. In this study a completely randomized block design was used with four replications and evaluated for photosynthetic and transpiration rate, stomatal conductance, chlorophyll, leaf area and temperature, aerial and roots fresh and dry biomass, fresh and dry yield. The results showed that oregano adapted best to the shade-enclosure with increase yield of fresh and dry leaf weight of 165% and 118%, respectively, when compared to open-field. Also, higher doses of bocashi improved yield in both environments but more so in shade-enclosure. Soil moisture retention was higher in shade-enclosure which was reflected in physiological variables for soil matric potential, transpiration, stomatal conductivity, photosynthesis being significantly higher in shade-enclosure compared to open-field, thus improving yield. It seems that oregano plants can be grown and perform better under shade-enclosure than open-field and bocashi is a suitable organic fertilizer. PMID:26257756

  15. Proper housing conditions in experimental stroke studies – special emphasis on environmental enrichment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Satu eMering

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Environmental enrichment provides laboratory animals with novelty and extra space, allowing different forms of multisensory stimulation ranging from social grouping to enhanced motor activity. At the extreme end of the spectrum, one can have a super-enriched environment. Environmental enrichment is believed to result in improved cognitive and sensorimotor functions both in naïve rodents and in animals with brain lesions such as those occurring after a stroke. Robust behavioral effects in animals which have suffered a stroke are probably related not only to neuronal plasticity in the perilesional cortex but also in remote brain areas. There is emerging evidence to suggest that testing restorative therapies in an enriched environment can maximize treatment effects, e.g., the perilesional milieu seems to be more receptive to concomitant pharmacotherapy and/or cell therapy. This review provides an updated overview on the effect of an enriched environment in stroke animals from the practical points to be considered when planning experiments to the mechanisms explaining why combined therapies can contribute to behavioral improvement in a synergistic manner.

  16. An Evolutionary Model of the Environmental Conditions that Shape the Development of Prosociality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel Tumminelli O'Brien

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The current review presents a model for how prosocial development is driven by sociocognitive mechanisms that have been shaped by natural selection to translate critical environmental factors into locally adaptive levels of prosociality. This is done through a synthesis of two existing literatures. Evolutionary developmental psychologists have demonstrated a biological basis for the emergence of prosocial behavior early in youth, and work based on social learning theory has explored how social experiences can influence prosociality across development. The model forwarded organizes this latter literature in a way that is specific to how the biological mechanisms underpinning prosociality have evolved. This consists of two main psychological mechanisms. 1 A domain-specific program that is responsive to environmental factors that determine the relative success of different levels of prosociality. It uses the local prevalence of prosocial others (i.e., support and expectations for prosocial behavior (i.e., structure to guide prosocial development. 2 The domain-general process of cultural learning, by which youth adopt local social norms based on the examples of others. Implications and hypotheses are articulated for both the sociocognitive structure of the individual and the role of social contexts.

  17. Changing environmental conditions and applying organic fertilizers in Origanum vulgare L.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bernardo eMurillo-Amador

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Any improvement in agricultural systems that results in higher production should also reduce negative environmental impacts and enhance sustainability. The aim of this research was to investigate the effect of two different production systems, one open-field and the other shade-enclosure with four bocashi doses, in order to find the best environmental option in terms of yield, physiological and morphometric characteristics in one oregano (Origanum vulgare L. cultivar. In this study a completely randomized block design was used with four replications and evaluated for photosynthetic and transpiration rate, stomatal conductance, chlorophyll, leaf area and temperature, aerial and roots fresh and dry biomass, fresh and dry yield. The results showed that oregano adapted best to the shade-enclosure with increase yield of fresh and dry leaf weight of 165% and 118%, respectively, when compared to open-field. Also, higher doses of bocashi improved yield in both environments but more so in shade-enclosure. Soil moisture retention was higher in shade-enclosure which was reflected in physiological variables for soil matric potential, transpiration, stomatal conductivity, photosynthesis being significantly higher in shade-enclosure compared to open-field, thus improving yield. It seems that oregano plants can be grown and perform better under shade-enclosure than open-field and bocashi is a suitable organic fertilizer.

  18. Changing environmental conditions and applying organic fertilizers in Origanum vulgare L.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murillo-Amador, Bernardo; Morales-Prado, Luis E; Troyo-Diéguez, Enrique; Córdoba-Matson, Miguel V; Hernández-Montiel, Luis G; Rueda-Puente, Edgar O; Nieto-Garibay, Alejandra

    2015-01-01

    Any improvement in agricultural systems that results in higher production should also reduce negative environmental impacts and enhance sustainability. The aim of this research was to investigate the effect of two different production systems, one open-field and the other shade-enclosure with four bocashi doses, in order to find the best environmental option in terms of yield, physiological and morphometric characteristics in one oregano (Origanum vulgare L.) cultivar. In this study a completely randomized block design was used with four replications and evaluated for photosynthetic and transpiration rate, stomatal conductance, chlorophyll, leaf area and temperature, aerial and roots fresh and dry biomass, fresh and dry yield. The results showed that oregano adapted best to the shade-enclosure with increase yield of fresh and dry leaf weight of 165% and 118%, respectively, when compared to open-field. Also, higher doses of bocashi improved yield in both environments but more so in shade-enclosure. Soil moisture retention was higher in shade-enclosure which was reflected in physiological variables for soil matric potential, transpiration, stomatal conductivity, photosynthesis being significantly higher in shade-enclosure compared to open-field, thus improving yield. It seems that oregano plants can be grown and perform better under shade-enclosure than open-field and bocashi is a suitable organic fertilizer.

  19. Predicting plant performance under simultaneously changing environmental conditions – the interplay between temperature, light and internode growth

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katrin eKahlen

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Plant performance is significantly influenced by prevailing light and temperature conditions during plant growth and development. For plants exposed to natural fluctuations in abiotic environmental conditions it is however laborious and cumbersome to experimentally assign any contribution of individual environmental factors to plant responses. This study aimed at analyzing the interplay between light, temperature and internode growth based on model approaches. We extended the light-sensitive virtual plant model L-Cucumber by implementing a common Arrhenius function for appearance rates, growth rates and growth durations. For two greenhouse experiments, the temperature-sensitive model approach resulted in a precise prediction of cucumber mean internode lengths and number of internodes, as well as in accurately predicted patterns of individual internode lengths along the main stem. In addition, a system’s analysis revealed that environmental data averaged over the experimental period were not necessarily related to internode performance. Finally, the need for a species-specific parameterization of the temperature response function and related aspects in modelling temperature effects on plant development and growth is discussed.

  20. Technical Note: Particulate reactive oxygen species concentrations and their association with environmental conditions in an urban, subtropical climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khurshid, S. S.; Siegel, J. A.; Kinney, K. A.

    2014-07-01

    Reactions between hydrocarbons and ozone or hydroxyl radicals lead to the formation of oxidized species, including reactive oxygen species (ROS), and secondary organic aerosol (SOA) in the troposphere. ROS can be carried deep into the lungs by small aerodynamic particles where they can cause oxidative stress and cell damage. While environmental studies have focused on ROS in the gas phase and rainwater, it is also important to determine concentrations of ROS on respirable particles. Samples of PM2.5 collected over 3 h at midday on 40 days during November 2011 and September 2012 show that the particulate ROS concentration in Austin, Texas, ranged from a minimum value of 0.02 nmoles H2O2 m-3 air in December to 3.81 nmoles H2O2 m-3 air in September. Results from correlation tests and linear regression analysis on particulate ROS concentrations and environmental conditions (which included ozone and PM2.5 concentrations, temperature, relative humidity, precipitation and solar radiation) indicate that ambient particulate ROS is significantly influenced by the ambient ozone concentration, temperature and incident solar radiation. Particulate ROS concentrations measured in this study were in the range reported by other studies in the US, Taiwan and Singapore. This study is one of the first to assess seasonal variations in particulate ROS concentrations and helps explain the influence of environmental conditions on particulate ROS concentrations.

  1. Discovery, screening and evaluation of a plasma biomarker panel for subjects with psychological suboptimal health state using 1H-NMR-based metabolomics profiles

    OpenAIRE

    Jun-sheng Tian; Xiao-tao Xia; Yan-fei Wu; Lei Zhao; Huan Xiang; Guan-hua Du; Xiang Zhang; Xue-mei Qin

    2016-01-01

    Individuals in the state of psychological suboptimal health keep increasing, only scales and questionnaires were used to diagnose in clinic under current conditions, and symptoms of high reliability and accuracy are destitute. Therefore, the noninvasive and precise laboratory diagnostic methods are needed. This study aimed to develop an objective method through screen potential biomarkers or a biomarker panel to facilitate the diagnosis in clinic using plasma metabolomics. Profiles were based...

  2. Accelerated aging of AP/HTPB propellants and the influence of various environmental aging conditions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Keizers, H.L.J.

    1995-01-01

    Preliminary resuits on accelerated aging of lab-scale produced AP/HTPB propellant and propellants from dissectioned rocket motors are discussed, including aging logic, storage conditions, test techniques and resuits on mechanical, ballistic and safety testing. The mam aging effect observed was

  3. The effect of in-vitro environmental conditions on some sugarcane ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... and then, transferred in light. Maximum shoot regeneration and number of shoots per culture could be recorded under 16 h photoperiod of 4000 lux light intensity at a growth room temperature of 25 ± 2°C in both varieties of sugarcane. Key words: Callus culture, shoot regeneration, in-vitro growth condition, sugarcane.

  4. Arsenic incorporation into pyrite at ambient environmental conditions: a continuous-flow experiment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wolthers, M.; Butler, I.B.; Rickard, D.; Mason, P.R.D.

    2005-01-01

    Pyrite was synthesized in the presence of arsenite, As(III), at concentrations approaching those in ambient environments, under controlled, monitored, anoxic conditions in a continuous-flow reaction system at pH 6 and 25°C. During the continuous pyrite growth in these experiments, a continued

  5. Abiotic environmental conditions for germination and development of gametophytes of Cyathea phalerata Mart. (Cyatheaceae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Catiuscia Marcon

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT In order to successfully establish themselves in their natural environment, ferns need habitats with abiotic conditions that are suitable for spore germination and gametophyte development. The objective of this study was to assess the influence of abiotic factors on the initial development of Cyathea phalerata cultivated in vitro. Spore germination and gametophyte development were assessed under varying conditions of surface sterilization, pH, temperature and photoperiod. Exogenous contamination was eliminated by sterilizing spores with 2.5 % NaClO for 15 min and sowing them into a culture medium supplemented with nystatin. Spores germinated at all pHs tested. Gametophytic development was faster in acidic pHs. Cultures at 25 °C exhibited the highest percentages of germination and laminar gametophytes. The species produced its highest percentages of gametophytes in cultures with photoperiods between 6 and 18 h. The optimal abiotic conditions found here for in vitro development of C. phalerata are similar to those found in its natural habitat. The southern limit of this species to north of the 30th parallel in Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, may be because further south spores do not encounter the ideal combined conditions of temperature, pH and photoperiod determined in the laboratory.

  6. Challenges for Physical Characterization of Silver Nanoparticles Under Pristine and Environmentally Relevant Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    The reported size distribution of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) is strongly affected by the underlying measurement method, agglomeration state, and dispersion conditions. A selection of AgNP materials with vendor-reported diameters ranging from 1 nm to 100 nm, various size distrib...

  7. Accelerated Degradation Test and Predictive Failure Analysis of B10 Copper-Nickel Alloy under Marine Environmental Conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Bo; Ye, Tianyuan; Feng, Qiang; Yao, Jinghua; Wei, Mumeng

    2015-09-10

    This paper studies the corrosion behavior of B10 copper-nickel alloy in marine environment. Accelerated degradation test under marine environmental conditions was designed and performed based on the accelerated testing principle and the corrosion degradation mechanism. With the prolongation of marine corrosion time, the thickness of Cu₂O film increased gradually. Its corrosion product was Cu₂(OH)₃Cl, which increased in quantity over time. Cl(-) was the major factor responsible for the marine corrosion of copper and copper alloy. Through the nonlinear fitting of corrosion rate and corrosion quantity (corrosion weight loss), degradation data of different corrosion cycles, the quantitative effects of two major factors, i.e., dissolved oxygen (DO) and corrosion medium temperature, on corrosion behavior of copper alloy were analyzed. The corrosion failure prediction models under different ambient conditions were built. One-day corrosion weight loss under oxygenated stirring conditions was equivalent to 1.31-day weight loss under stationary conditions, and the corrosion rate under oxygenated conditions was 1.31 times higher than that under stationary conditions. In addition, corrosion medium temperature had a significant effect on the corrosion of B10 copper sheet.

  8. Accelerated Degradation Test and Predictive Failure Analysis of B10 Copper-Nickel Alloy under Marine Environmental Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Bo; Ye, Tianyuan; Feng, Qiang; Yao, Jinghua; Wei, Mumeng

    2015-01-01

    This paper studies the corrosion behavior of B10 copper-nickel alloy in marine environment. Accelerated degradation test under marine environmental conditions was designed and performed based on the accelerated testing principle and the corrosion degradation mechanism. With the prolongation of marine corrosion time, the thickness of Cu2O film increased gradually. Its corrosion product was Cu2(OH)3Cl, which increased in quantity over time. Cl− was the major factor responsible for the marine corrosion of copper and copper alloy. Through the nonlinear fitting of corrosion rate and corrosion quantity (corrosion weight loss), degradation data of different corrosion cycles, the quantitative effects of two major factors, i.e., dissolved oxygen (DO) and corrosion medium temperature, on corrosion behavior of copper alloy were analyzed. The corrosion failure prediction models under different ambient conditions were built. One-day corrosion weight loss under oxygenated stirring conditions was equivalent to 1.31-day weight loss under stationary conditions, and the corrosion rate under oxygenated conditions was 1.31 times higher than that under stationary conditions. In addition, corrosion medium temperature had a significant effect on the corrosion of B10 copper sheet. PMID:28793549

  9. Accelerated Degradation Test and Predictive Failure Analysis of B10 Copper-Nickel Alloy under Marine Environmental Conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bo Sun

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available This paper studies the corrosion behavior of B10 copper-nickel alloy in marine environment. Accelerated degradation test under marine environmental conditions was designed and performed based on the accelerated testing principle and the corrosion degradation mechanism. With the prolongation of marine corrosion time, the thickness of Cu2O film increased gradually. Its corrosion product was Cu2(OH3Cl, which increased in quantity over time. Cl− was the major factor responsible for the marine corrosion of copper and copper alloy. Through the nonlinear fitting of corrosion rate and corrosion quantity (corrosion weight loss, degradation data of different corrosion cycles, the quantitative effects of two major factors, i.e., dissolved oxygen (DO and corrosion medium temperature, on corrosion behavior of copper alloy were analyzed. The corrosion failure prediction models under different ambient conditions were built. One-day corrosion weight loss under oxygenated stirring conditions was equivalent to 1.31-day weight loss under stationary conditions, and the corrosion rate under oxygenated conditions was 1.31 times higher than that under stationary conditions. In addition, corrosion medium temperature had a significant effect on the corrosion of B10 copper sheet.

  10. Suboptimal maternal and paternal mental health are associated with child bullying perpetration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shetgiri, Rashmi; Lin, Hua; Flores, Glenn

    2015-06-01

    This study examines associations between maternal and paternal mental health and child bullying perpetration among school-age children, and whether having one or both parents with suboptimal mental health is associated with bullying. The 2007 National Survey of Children's Health, a nationally-representative, random-digit-dial survey, was analyzed, using a parent-reported bullying measure. Suboptimal mental health was defined as fair/poor (vs. good/very good/excellent) parental self-reported mental and emotional health. Of the 61,613 parents surveyed, more than half were parents of boys and were white, 20% were Latino, 15% African American, and 7% other race/ethnicity. Suboptimal maternal (OR 1.4; 95% CI 1.1-1.8) and paternal (OR 1.5; 95% CI 1.1-2.2) mental health are associated with bullying. Compared with children with no parents with suboptimal mental health, children with only one or both parents with suboptimal mental health have higher bullying odds. Addressing the mental health of both parents may prove beneficial in preventing bullying.

  11. Cadmium toxicity investigated at the physiological and biophysical levels under environmentally relevant conditions using the aquatic model plant Ceratophyllum demersum

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andresen, Elisa; Kappel, Sophie; Stärk, Hans-Joachim

    2016-01-01

    Cadmium (Cd) is an important environmental pollutant and is poisonous to most organisms. We aimed to unravel the mechanisms of Cd toxicity in the model water plant Ceratophyllum demersum exposed to low (nM) concentrations of Cd as are present in nature. Experiments were conducted under...... environmentally relevant conditions, including nature-like light and temperature cycles, and a low biomass to water ratio. We measured chlorophyll (Chl) fluorescence kinetics, oxygen exchange, the concentrations of reactive oxygen species and pigments, metal binding to proteins, and the accumulation of starch...... and metals. The inhibition threshold concentration for most parameters was 20 nM. Below this concentration, hardly any stress symptoms were observed. The first site of inhibition was photosynthetic light reactions (the maximal quantum yield of photosystem II (PSII) reaction centre measured as Fv /Fm , light...

  12. Biofouling community composition across a range of environmental conditions and geographical locations suitable for floating marine renewable energy generation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macleod, Adrian K; Stanley, Michele S; Day, John G; Cook, Elizabeth J

    2016-01-01

    Knowledge of biofouling typical of marine structures is essential for engineers to define appropriate loading criteria in addition to informing other stakeholders about the ecological implications of creating novel artificial environments. There is a lack of information regarding biofouling community composition (including weight and density characteristics) on floating structures associated with future marine renewable energy generation technologies. A network of navigation buoys were identified across a range of geographical areas, environmental conditions (tidal flow speed, temperature and salinity), and deployment durations suitable for future developments. Despite the perceived importance of environmental and temporal factors, geographical location explained the greatest proportion of the observed variation in community composition, emphasising the importance of considering geography when assessing the impact of biofouling on device functioning and associated ecology. The principal taxa associated with variation in biofouling community composition were mussels (Mytilus edulis), which were also important when determining loading criteria.

  13. Characterization of clay-modified thermoset polymers under various environmental conditions for the use in high-voltage power pylons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kliem, Mathias; Høgsberg, Jan Becker; Wang, Qian

    2017-01-01

    The effect of nanoclay on various material properties like damping and strength of typical thermoset polymers, such as epoxy and vinyl ester, was investigated. Different environmental conditions typical for high-voltage transmission pylons made of composite materials were taken into account. Resin...... samples were prepared with various clay weight fractions ranging from 0% to 3%. Scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction and rheological analysis were used to study the morphology and the structure of the nanocomposites. For all nanoclay-modified thermoset polymers......, the morphology was found to be of exfoliated structure mainly. Static, uniaxial tensile tests showed that the addition of nanoclay to thermoset polymers led to a beneficial effect on the stiffness, whereas the tensile strength and ductility significantly decreased. When exposed to different environmental...

  14. Analysis of economic and environmental benefits of a new heat pump air conditioning system with a heat recovery device

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, lingxue

    2017-08-01

    The paper designs a new wind-water cooling and heating water conditioner system, connects cooling tower with heat recovery device, which uses cooling water to completely remove the heat that does not need heat recollection, in order to ensure that the system can work efficiently with higher performance coefficient. After the test actual engineering operation, the system’s maximum cooling coefficient of performance can reach 3.5. Its maximum comprehensive coefficient of performance can reach 6.5. After the analysis of its economic and environmental, we conclude that the new system can save 89822 kw per year. It reflects energy-saving and environmental benefits of the cold and hot water air conditioning system.

  15. Linking shoreline displacement to environmental conditions in the Wax Lake Delta, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geleynse, N.; Hiatt, M. R.; Sangireddy, H.; Passalacqua, P.

    2013-12-01

    The dynamics of river deltas are not well-understood in part because of scarcity of historical data that document the growth or retreat of their channel networks, islands and shorelines. In particular, the mapping of deltaic shorelines is not trivial, however recent developments allow for their extraction from satellite and aerial imagery. Here, we present an analysis of environmental data and Landsat imagery of the Wax Lake Delta, a naturally-developing river delta in the shallow Atchafalaya Basin, Gulf of Mexico, USA. The image-based shoreline corresponds to the hydrodynamic shoreline, that is, the boundary of the subaerial and subaqueous portions of the delta, however, can be related to a morphodynamically-relevant shoreline by application of our method [Geleynse et al., 2012] to bathymetric-topographic data. Moreover, the effect of tides, river floods, wind, and vegetation cover on the extracted shorelines of the Wax Lake Delta can be identified.

  16. Impact of environmental conditions on biomass yield, quality, and bio-mitigation capacity of Saccharina latissima

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bruhn, Annette; Tørring, Ditte Bruunshøj; Thomsen, Marianne

    2016-01-01

    Seaweeds are attractive as a sustainable aquaculture crop for food, feed, bioenergy and biomolecules. Further, the non-value ecosystem services of seaweed cultivation (i.e. nutrient recapture) are gaining interest as an instrument towards sustainable aquaculture and for fulfilling the aims...... of the EU Marine Strategy Framework Directive. Environmental factors determine the yield and quality of the cultivated seaweed biomass and, in return, the seaweed aquaculture affects the marine environment by nutrient assimilation. Consequently, site selection is critical for obtaining optimal biomass yield...... and quality and for successful bio-mitigation. In this study, 5 sites for cultivation of Saccharina latissima were selected within a eutrophic water body to guide site selection for future kelp cultivation activities. Results were coupled to marine monitoring data to explore the relationship between...

  17. Male germplasm in relation to environmental conditions: synoptic focus on DNA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jenkins, Jill A.; Tiersch, Terrence R.; Green, Christopher C.

    2011-01-01

    Wild animals are generally more sensitive than humans to environmental stressors, thus they act as sentinels for resource degradation. Sublethal stress is generally manifested first at the sub-organismal level, where immune systems are compromised, reproductive success is reduced, and genetic integrity is altered. Biomarkers - variables quantifiably responsive to changes in the environment - provide useful information to resource managers and regulatory agencies. Biomarkers of sperm quality are proving useful in this capacity, as well as in artificial breeding. Cellular and molecular bioassays can help to determine mechanisms of action of deleterious agents, predict fertility and reproductive potential, and model population-wide and community level effects. A sequence of biomarker assays can be tailored to fit species of concern, to study physiological effects responsive to known contamination events, and can be selectively applied to fresh, thawed, and fixed samples, as well as those shipped to the laboratory from field sites.

  18. Lifetime of Poly(triaryl amine) Based Organic Field Effect Transistors under Different Environmental Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lau, Tobias; Lorenz, Enno; Koyuncu, Metin

    2013-04-01

    Characterization of reliability and lifetime is a key issue on the way to commercialization of products based on organic electronics. Prediction of the lifetime requires the understanding of failure mechanisms and the circumstances leading to failure. In this work the stability of poly(triaryl amine) (PTAA) based organic field effect transistors (OFETs) on a poly(ethylene naphthalate) (PEN) substrate is investigated under environmental stressing. PTAA is known to form amorphous thin films after spin coating and to be air stable for extended periods of time. This inherent air stability makes it a good candidate for testing of environmental influences. The samples were electrically characterized regularly between storage cycles at 85 °C and 85 °C/85% relative humidity (RH). Samples stored under dry atmosphere and inert gas were used as reference. More than 1700 OFETs were produced in multiple batches and measured using an automated measurement system to collect statistically significant data. Circuit-relevant OFET parameters such as on- and off-current, mobility, threshold voltage and gate leakage current were extracted applying a thin film transistor (TFT) device model to the measured transfer and output curves. The threshold voltage is found to be the most sensitive parameter especially for the samples stored at 85 °C. The effect of storage under 85 °C/85%RH is observed to be comparably small. Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) measurements of the aged OFET samples indicate a correlation between the shift of the electrical parameters and the appearance of carbonyl groups in the dielectric layer of the devices. Possible degradation mechanisms are discussed based on this observation.

  19. Environmental Growing Conditions in Five Production Systems Induce Stress Response and Affect Chemical Composition of Cocoa (Theobroma cacao L.) Beans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niether, Wiebke; Smit, Inga; Armengot, Laura; Schneider, Monika; Gerold, Gerhard; Pawelzik, Elke

    2017-11-29

    Cocoa beans are produced all across the humid tropics under different environmental conditions provided by the region but also by the season and the type of production system. Agroforestry systems compared to monocultures buffer climate extremes and therefore provide a less stressful environment for the understory cocoa, especially under seasonally varying conditions. We measured the element concentration as well as abiotic stress indicators (polyamines and total phenolic content) in beans derived from five different production systems comparing monocultures and agroforestry systems and from two harvesting seasons. Concentrations of N, Mg, S, Fe, Mn, Na, and Zn were higher in beans produced in agroforestry systems with high stem density and leaf area index. In the dry season, the N, Fe, and Cu concentration of the beans increased. The total phenolic content increased with proceeding of the dry season while other abiotic stress indicators like spermine decreased, implying an effect of the water availability on the chemical composition of the beans. Agroforestry systems did not buffer the variability of stress indicators over the seasons compared to monocultures. The effect of environmental growing conditions on bean chemical composition was not strong but can contribute to variations in cocoa bean quality.

  20. Robust Vehicle Detection under Various Environmental Conditions Using an Infrared Thermal Camera and Its Application to Road Traffic Flow Monitoring

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Toshiyuki Nakamiya

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available We have already proposed a method for detecting vehicle positions and their movements (henceforth referred to as “our previous method” using thermal images taken with an infrared thermal camera. Our experiments have shown that our previous method detects vehicles robustly under four different environmental conditions which involve poor visibility conditions in snow and thick fog. Our previous method uses the windshield and its surroundings as the target of the Viola-Jones detector. Some experiments in winter show that the vehicle detection accuracy decreases because the temperatures of many windshields approximate those of the exterior of the windshields. In this paper, we propose a new vehicle detection method (henceforth referred to as “our new method”. Our new method detects vehicles based on tires’ thermal energy reflection. We have done experiments using three series of thermal images for which the vehicle detection accuracies of our previous method are low. Our new method detects 1,417 vehicles (92.8% out of 1,527 vehicles, and the number of false detection is 52 in total. Therefore, by combining our two methods, high vehicle detection accuracies are maintained under various environmental conditions. Finally, we apply the traffic information obtained by our two methods to traffic flow automatic monitoring, and show the effectiveness of our proposal.

  1. Robust vehicle detection under various environmental conditions using an infrared thermal camera and its application to road traffic flow monitoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iwasaki, Yoichiro; Misumi, Masato; Nakamiya, Toshiyuki

    2013-06-17

    We have already proposed a method for detecting vehicle positions and their movements (henceforth referred to as "our previous method") using thermal images taken with an infrared thermal camera. Our experiments have shown that our previous method detects vehicles robustly under four different environmental conditions which involve poor visibility conditions in snow and thick fog. Our previous method uses the windshield and its surroundings as the target of the Viola-Jones detector. Some experiments in winter show that the vehicle detection accuracy decreases because the temperatures of many windshields approximate those of the exterior of the windshields. In this paper, we propose a new vehicle detection method (henceforth referred to as "our new method"). Our new method detects vehicles based on tires' thermal energy reflection. We have done experiments using three series of thermal images for which the vehicle detection accuracies of our previous method are low. Our new method detects 1,417 vehicles (92.8%) out of 1,527 vehicles, and the number of false detection is 52 in total. Therefore, by combining our two methods, high vehicle detection accuracies are maintained under various environmental conditions. Finally, we apply the traffic information obtained by our two methods to traffic flow automatic monitoring, and show the effectiveness of our proposal.

  2. Effect of environmental condition on ventilation rate of special standard bars

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miao Qian

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Standard bar of ventilation is the equipment extensively used in the tobacco industry to calibrate the variety of testing machines. The bar’s performance that is usually affected by ambient conditions is numerically studied in this paper. Firstly, the geometry of standard bar is obtained by an optical microscopic 3-D measurement. Then, Solidworks is used to build the 3-D model of standard bar and Gambit is used to mesh the model. Finally, the performance of standard bar under variant ambient conditions is analyzed by Fluent. Compared with the experimental data, the numerical results are found to be quite accurate, and it is found that the ventilation rate increases linearly as temperature rise and decreases non-linearly with the growth of pressure.

  3. Adsorption of diclofenac onto organoclays: Effects of surfactant and environmental (pH and temperature) conditions

    OpenAIRE

    Oliveira, Tiago; Guégan, Régis; Thiebault, Thomas; Le Milbeau, Claude; Muller, Fabrice; Teixeira, Vinicius; Giovanela, Marcelo; Boussafir, Mohammed

    2017-01-01

    Accepted Manuscript; International audience; Among pharmaceutical products (PPs) recalcitrant to water treatments, diclofenac shows a high toxicity and remains at high concentration in natural aquatic environments. The aim of this study concerns the understanding of the adsorption mechanism of this anionic PP onto two organoclays prepared with two long-alkyl chains cationic surfactants showing different chemical nature for various experimental pH and temperature conditions. The experimental d...

  4. [Fundamentals of socio-hygienic monitoring of environmental conditions for students of higher education schools].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blinova, E G; Kuchma, V R

    2012-01-01

    Socioeconomic transformations and the poor environment of an industrial megalopolis negatively affected quality of life and morbidity rates in students (n = 2160). Academic intensity contributed to an increase in overall morbidity and morbidity from nervous system involvement. The regional sociohygienic monitoring of high-school training conditions within the framework of the surveillance system substantiates programs to prevent worse health and life quality in high school students.

  5. Monitoring and prevention of anemia relying on nutrition and environmental conditions in sports.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sacirović, Selim; Asotic, Jasminka; Maksimovic, Radmila; Radevic, Borislav; Muric, Benin; Mekic, Hasim; Biocanin, Rade

    2013-01-01

    none declared. Anemia is a blood disorder characterized by abnormally low levels of healthy red blood cells or reduced hemoglobin, the iron-bearing protein in red blood cells that delivers oxygen to tissues throughout the body. The most common symptoms of this disorder are fatigue, weakness and, in extreme cases, shortness of breath or palpitations, or you may have no symptoms at all. Sports anemia is a term loosely applied to a least three different conditions: hemodilution, iron deficiency anemia and foot-strike anemia. Not exclusive to athletes, iron deficiency anemia occurs most often among women who may lose more iron each month when they menstruate than they take in. Therefore, we examined its effect on the physical condition of female athletes. Several years (since 2010th until 2012th), we studied how anemia among girls (pioneers, juniors and seniors categories) that are involved in sports (women's soccer, volleyball and handball) in Rasina's district (Serbia), affecting their physical fitness. When their trainers approach to us, complaining that they have players who are great, so extraordinary talents, but by no means able to withstand more than twenty minutes in the game, we suggest them to perform laboratory tests. It was tested 134th female athletes. Anemia was observed in 43. (9. pioneers, 19. juniors and 15. seniors). So, laboratory results showed that in these girls anemia causes poor sport condition. After that, the girls enhanced nutrition. Their diet consisted of iron supplements and vitamins. Altitude training was organized for them, also. After all these treatments, condition significantly improved. It was first time that trainers in Rasina's district realizing significance of laboratory tests.

  6. Comparison of methodologies in determining bone marrow fat percentage under different environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murden, David; Hunnam, Jaimie; De Groef, Bert; Rawlin, Grant; McCowan, Christina

    2017-01-01

    The use of bone marrow fat percentage has been recommended in assessing body condition at the time of death in wild and domestic ruminants, but few studies have looked at the effects of time and exposure on animal bone marrow. We investigated the utility of bone marrow fat extraction as a tool for establishing antemortem body condition in postmortem specimens from sheep and cattle, particularly after exposure to high heat, and compared different techniques of fat extraction for this purpose. Femora were collected from healthy and "skinny" sheep and cattle. The bones were either frozen or subjected to 40°C heat; heated bones were either wrapped in plastic to minimize desiccation or were left unwrapped. Marrow fat percentage was determined at different time intervals by oven-drying, or by solvent extraction using hexane in manual equipment or a Soxhlet apparatus. Extraction was performed, where possible, on both wet and dried tissue. Multiple samples were tested from each bone. Bone marrow fat analysis using a manual, hexane-based extraction technique was found to be a moderately sensitive method of assessing antemortem body condition of cattle up to 6 d after death. Multiple replicates should be analyzed where possible. Samples from "skinny" sheep showed a different response to heat from those of "healthy" sheep; "skinny" samples were so reduced in quantity by day 6 (the first sampling day) that no individual testing could be performed. Further work is required to understand the response of sheep marrow.

  7. Working conditions and environmental exposures among electronic waste workers in Ghana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akormedi, Matthew; Asampong, Emmanuel; Fobil, Julius N

    2013-01-01

    To investigate and describe informal e-waste recycling and working conditions at Agbogbloshie, Accra, Ghana. We conducted in-depth interviews which were qualitatively analysed from a grounded theory perspective. Workers obtained e-waste from the various residential areas in Accra, then dismantled and burned them in open air to recover copper, aluminum, steel, and other products for sale to customers on-site or at the nearby Agbogbloshie market. The processers worked under unhealthy conditions often surrounded by refuse and human excreta without any form of protective gear and were thus exposed to frequent burns, cuts, and inhalation of highly contaminated fumes. We observed no form of social security/support system for the workers, who formed informal associations to support one another in times of difficulty. e-waste recycling working conditions were very challenging and presented serious hazards to worker health and wellbeing. Formalizing the e-waste processing activities requires developing a framework of sustainable financial and social security for the e-waste workers, including adoption of low-cost, socially acceptable, easy-to-operate, and cleaner technologies that would safeguard the health of the workers and the general public.

  8. Adaptations in rod outer segment disc membranes in response to environmental lighting conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rakshit, Tatini; Senapati, Subhadip; Parmar, Vipul M; Sahu, Bhubanananda; Maeda, Akiko; Park, Paul S-H

    2017-10-01

    The light-sensing rod photoreceptor cell exhibits several adaptations in response to the lighting environment. While adaptations to short-term changes in lighting conditions have been examined in depth, adaptations to long-term changes in lighting conditions are less understood. Atomic force microscopy was used to characterize the structure of rod outer segment disc membranes, the site of photon absorption by the pigment rhodopsin, to better understand how photoreceptor cells respond to long-term lighting changes. Structural properties of the disc membrane changed in response to housing mice in constant dark or light conditions and these adaptive changes required output from the phototransduction cascade initiated by rhodopsin. Among these were changes in the packing density of rhodopsin in the membrane, which was independent of rhodopsin synthesis and specifically affected scotopic visual function as assessed by electroretinography. Studies here support the concept of photostasis, which maintains optimal photoreceptor cell function with implications in retinal degenerations. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Bacterial epimerization as a route for deoxynivalenol detoxification: the influence of growth and environmental conditions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jian Wei eHe

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Deoxynivalenol (DON is a toxic secondary metabolite produced by several Fusarium species that infest wheat and corn. Food and feed contaminated with DON pose a health risk to both humans and livestock and form a major barrier for international trade. Microbial detoxification represents an alternative approach to the physical and chemical detoxification methods of DON-contaminated grains. The present study details the characterization of a novel bacterium, Devosia mutans 17-2-E-8, that is capable of transforming DON to a non-toxic stereoisomer, 3-epi-deoxynivalenol under aerobic conditions, mild temperature (25-30 oC, and neutral pH. The biotransformation takes place in the presence of rich sources of organic nitrogen and carbon without the need of DON to be the sole carbon source. The process is enzymatic in nature and endures a high detoxification capacity (3 µg DON/h/108 cells. The above conditions collectively suggest the possibility of utilizing the isolated bacterium as a feed treatment to address DON contamination under empirical field conditions.

  10. Non conformance in fittings for critical environmental conditions; Conexoes nao conformes para trabalho em meios criticos

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sgarbi, Mauricio [Promon Engenharia, Sao Paulo, SP (Brazil); Zeemann, Annelise [Tecmetal, Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil)

    2012-07-01

    Carbon steel fittings ASTM A105 and ASTM A234 WPB are widely applied for refinery piping and equipment and the detection, by a construction company, of a fitting manufacturing non conformance (NC) showed to be an unexpected problem of enormous dimension, since part of the plant was in startup conditions, with the NC fittings already welded, hydrostatically tested, painted and, in several lines, already thermally insulated. The challenge of treating the NC in a quick way with 100% confidence was even more difficult due to the metallurgical nature of the problem, not in the expertise of a construction company, which analyzed and decided about changing or accepting about 11,251 fittings of small diameter. This decision could impact directly in the refinery schedule for urgently running the unity. This work shows how the NC was detected, the extension of the problem that required field chemistry and hardness analysis of 7.425 parts, the metallurgical nature of the NC and the adopted treatment, considering that this unity presents aggressive environments and critical conditions like H2S. After a complex metallurgical study it was possible to change only 30% of the NC fittings, although some additional heat treatments were required to assure favorable conditions for piping use. (author)

  11. Droplets spectrum of air-assisted boom sprayers under different environmental and operational conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robson S. Sasaki

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT During pesticide spraying, the psychrometric conditions of the air may cause evaporation of the droplets along their trajectory from the nozzle to the target. Thus, this study aimed to evaluate the effect of air psychrometric conditions and operating pressure on the droplet spectrum of air-assisted boom sprayers. The test was performed using a prototype equipped with an axial fan, a flow homogenizer, temperature and relative air humidity sensors, a spray nozzle and a gas-heating system to warm up the airflow. With the assembled system and the aid of a particle analyser, the JSF 11002 spray nozzle was evaluated with respect to droplet spectrum in four air psychrometric conditions (7, 14, 21 and 28 hPa and at four operating pressures (200, 300, 400 and 500 kPa. At the end, evaporation losses were observed during the sprayings. For a given operating pressure and for each increment of 1 hPa in vapor pressure deficit, there was a diameter reduction of approximately 0.0759, 0.518 and 1.514 μm for the parameters DV0.1, DV0.5 and DV0.9, respectively. The diameter of the droplets decreased as the operating pressure increased.

  12. Fluid balance, carbohydrate ingestion, and body temperature during men's stage-race cycling in temperate environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ross, Megan L; Stephens, Brian; Abbiss, Chris R; Martin, David T; Laursen, Paul B; Burke, Louise M

    2014-05-01

    To observe voluntary fluid and carbohydrate intakes and thermoregulatory characteristics of road cyclists during 2 multiday, multiple-stage races in temperate conditions. Ten internationally competitive male cyclists competed in 2 stage races (2009 Tour of Gippsland, T1, n = 5; 2010 Tour of Geelong, T2, n = 5) in temperate conditions (13.2-15.8°C; 54-80% relative humidity). Body mass (BM) was recorded immediately before and after each stage. Peak gastrointestinal temperature (TGI peak) was recorded throughout each stage. Cyclists recalled the types and volumes of fluid and food consumed throughout each stage. Although fluid intake varied according to the race format, there were strong correlations between fluid intake and distance across all formats of racing, in both tours (r = .82, r = .92). Within a stage, the relationship between finishing time and fluid intake was trivial. Mean BM change over a stage was 1.3%, with losses >2% BM occurring on 5 out of 43 measured occasions and the fastest competitors incurring lower BM changes. Most subjects consumed carbohydrate at rates that met the new guidelines (30-60 g/h for 2-3 h, ~90 g/h for >3 h), based on event duration. There were consistent observations of TGI peak >39°C during stages of T1 (67%) and T2 (73%) despite temperate environmental conditions. This study captured novel effects of high-intensity stage racing in temperate environmental conditions. In these conditions, cyclists were generally able to find opportunities to consume fluid and carbohydrate to meet current guidelines. We consistently observed high TGI peak, which merits further investigation.

  13. The effect of environmental conditions and soil physicochemistry on phosphate stabilisation of Pb in shooting range soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanderson, Peter; Naidu, Ravi; Bolan, Nanthi

    2016-04-01

    The stabilisation of Pb in the soil by phosphate is influenced by environmental conditions and physicochemical properties of the soils to which it is applied. Stabilisation of Pb by phosphate was examined in four soils under different environmental conditions. The effect of soil moisture and temperature on stabilisation of Pb by phosphate was examined by measurement of water extractable and bioaccessible Pb, sequential fractionation and X-ray absorption spectroscopy. The addition of humic acid, ammonium nitrate and chloride was also examined for inhibition or improvement of Pb stability with phosphate treatment. The effect of moisture level varied between soils. In soil MB and DA a soil moisture level of 50% water holding capacity was sufficient to maximise stabilisation of Pb, but in soil TV and PE reduction in bioaccessible Pb was inhibited at this moisture level. Providing moisture at twice the soil water holding capacity did not enhance the effect of phosphate on Pb stabilisation. The difference of Pb stability as a result of incubating phosphate treated soils at 18 °C and 37 °C was relatively small. However wet-dry cycles decreased the effectiveness of phosphate treatment. The reduction in bioaccessible Pb obtained was between 20 and 40% with the most optimal treatment conditions. The reduction in water extractable Pb by phosphate was substantial regardless of incubation conditions and the effect of different temperature and soil moisture regimes was not significant. Selective sequential extraction showed phosphate treatment converted Pb in fraction 1 (exchangeable, acid and water soluble) to fraction 2 (reducible). There were small difference in fraction 4 (residual) Pb and fraction 1 as a result of treatment conditions. X-ray absorption spectroscopy of stabilised PE soil revealed small differences in Pb speciation under varying soil moisture and temperature treatments. The addition of humic acid and chloride produced the greatest effect on Pb speciation in

  14. Impact of different environmental conditions on the aggregation of biogenic U(IV) nanoparticles synthesized by Desulfovibrio alaskensis G20

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Şengör, S. Sevinç; Singh, Gursharan; Dohnalkova, Alice; Spycher, Nicolas; Ginn, Timothy R.; Peyton, Brent M.; Sani, Rajesh K.

    2016-09-13

    This study investigates the impact of specific environmental conditions on the formation of colloidal U(IV) nanoparticles by the sulfate reducing bacteria (SRB, Desulfovibrio alaskensis G20). The reduction of soluble U(VI) to less soluble U(IV) was quantitatively investigated under growth and non-growth conditions in bicarbonate or 1,4-piperazinediethanesulfonic acid (PIPES) buffered environments. The results showed that under non-growth conditions, the majority of the reduced U nanoparticles aggregated and precipitated out of solution. High resolution transmission electron microscopy revealed that only a very small fraction of cells had reduced U precipitates in the periplasmic spaces in the presence of PIPES buffer, whereas in the presence of bicarbonate buffer, reduced U was also observed in the cytoplasm with greater aggregation of biogenic U(IV) particles at higher initial U(VI) concentrations. The same experiments were repeated under growth conditions using two different electron donors (lactate and pyruvate) and three electron acceptors (sulfate, fumarate, and thiosulfate). In contrast to the results of the non-growth experiments, even after 0.2 m filtration, the majority of biogenic U(IV) remained in the aqueous phase resulting in potentially mobile biogenic U(IV) nanoparticles. Size fractionation results showed that U(IV) aggregates were between 18 and 200 nm in diameter, and thus could be very mobile. The findings of this study are helpful to assess the size and potential mobility of reduced U nanoparticles under different environmental conditions, and would provide insights on their potential impact affecting U(VI) bioremediation efforts at subsurface contaminated sites.

  15. Malate as a key carbon source of leaf dark-respired CO2 across different environmental conditions in potato plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehmann, Marco M.; Rinne, Katja T.; Blessing, Carola; Siegwolf, Rolf T. W.; Buchmann, Nina; Werner, Roland A.

    2015-01-01

    Dissimilation of carbon sources during plant respiration in support of metabolic processes results in the continuous release of CO2. The carbon isotopic composition of leaf dark-respired CO2 (i.e. δ 13 C R) shows daily enrichments up to 14.8‰ under different environmental conditions. However, the reasons for this 13C enrichment in leaf dark-respired CO2 are not fully understood, since daily changes in δ13C of putative leaf respiratory carbon sources (δ 13 C RS) are not yet clear. Thus, we exposed potato plants (Solanum tuberosum) to different temperature and soil moisture treatments. We determined δ 13 C R with an in-tube incubation technique and δ 13 C RS with compound-specific isotope analysis during a daily cycle. The highest δ 13 C RS values were found in the organic acid malate under different environmental conditions, showing less negative values compared to δ 13 C R (up to 5.2‰) and compared to δ 13 C RS of soluble carbohydrates, citrate and starch (up to 8.8‰). Moreover, linear relationships between δ 13 C R and δ 13 C RS among different putative carbon sources were strongest for malate during daytime (r2=0.69, P≤0.001) and nighttime (r2=0.36, P≤0.001) under all environmental conditions. A multiple linear regression analysis revealed δ 13 C RS of malate as the most important carbon source influencing δ 13 C R. Thus, our results strongly indicate malate as a key carbon source of 13C enriched dark-respired CO2 in potato plants, probably driven by an anapleurotic flux replenishing intermediates of the Krebs cycle. PMID:26139821

  16. An Outbreak of Aspergillus Species in Response to Environmental Conditions in Serbia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jelena Lević

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The frequency and incidence of A. flavus and A. niger on barley, maize, soybean, sunflowerand wheat grain, the abundance of European corn borer (Ostrinia nubilalis mothsand their interaction depending on weather conditions in the 2008-2012 period were studied.Under the agroecological conditions of Serbia, the species A. niger is more frequentthan A. flavus, and concerning the crop species, its frequency is highest in kernels of sunflower,than soybean, maize, barley and wheat. A. flavus was extremely dominant on allplant species in 2012 regarding its frequency: 100% on soybean, 95.3% on maize, 65.2% onbarley, 57.1% on sunflower and 45.8% on wheat. Furthermore, the incidence of A. flavus washigher in 2012 than in previous years. The uncommonly high frequency and incidence of A.flavus infestation of maize grain in 2012 were caused by extremely stressful agrometeorologicalconditions, high temperatures and drought over the period from flowering to waxymaturity of maize. The precipitation factor (Pf = precipitation sum / average monthly temperatureshowed that 2012 was extremely arid in June (Pf = 0.57, July (Pf = 1.45, August (Pf= 0.15 and September (Pf = 1.42. European corn borer (ECB was a second factor causingintensive occurrence of A. flavus on maize grain in 2012. The maximum flight of ECB mothswas recorded as early as in July (5,149 and, as a result of this, high damage and numerousinjuries were detected at harvest. Those injuries were covered by visible olive-green powderycolonies typical of A. flavus. In the chronology of A. flavus occurrence, these are thefirst data on its very high frequency and incidence under the agroecological conditions ofSerbia. As intensive infections with A. flavus were rare in the past 50 years, the level of aflatoxinsin maize grain was low.

  17. Environmental conditions enhance toxicant effects in larvae of the ground beetle Pterostichus oblongopunctatus (Coleoptera: Carabidae)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bednarska, Agnieszka J., E-mail: a.bednarska@uj.edu.p [Institute of Environmental Sciences, Jagiellonian University, Gronostajowa 7, 30-387 Krakow (Poland); Laskowski, Ryszard, E-mail: ryszard.laskowski@uj.edu.p [Institute of Environmental Sciences, Jagiellonian University, Gronostajowa 7, 30-387 Krakow (Poland)

    2009-05-15

    The wide geographical distribution of ground beetles Pterostichus oblongopunctatus makes them very likely to be exposed to several environmental stressors at the same time. These could include both climatic stress and exposure to chemicals. Our previous studies demonstrated that the combined effect of nickel (Ni) and chlorpyrifos (CHP) was temperature (T)-dependent in adult P. oblongopunctatus. Frequently the different developmental stages of an organism are differently sensitive to single stressors, and for a number of reasons, such as differences in exposure routes, their interactions may also take different forms. Because of this, we studied the effects of the same factors on the beetle larvae. The results showed that all factors, as well as their interactions, influenced larvae survival. The synergistic effect of Ni and CPF was temperature-dependent and the effect of Ni x T interaction on the proportion of emerged imagines indicated stronger toxicity of Ni at 25 deg. C than at 10 deg. C. - Combined negative effects of nickel and chlorpyrifos on carabid beetles depend on ambient temperature.

  18. Some Properties of Emulsified Asphalt Paving Mixture at Iraqi Environmental Conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shakir.A.Al-Mishhadani* Hasan.H.Al-Baid

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Cold emulsified asphalt mixture is generally a mix made of emulsified asphalt withaggregate. Emulsified asphalt is manufactured from base asphalt, emulsifier agent and waterwith approximate percentage of 40% to 75% asphalt, 0.1% to 2.5% emulsifier and 25% to60% water plus some minor components. This study aims to use the cold emulsified asphaltmixtures for road construction and maintenance in Iraq as an alternative to the hot asphaltmixtures, due to its economical, practical and environmental advantages. This studyfocusedto test and evaluates the emulsified asphalt material properties to be used as paving mixture.The tested properties of emulsified asphalt mixture were bulk density, air voids, dry Marshallstability, wet Marshall stability, retained Marshall stability, flow tests and compared with thecommon used specification.The results indicate that the emulsified asphalt type cationic slowsetting low viscosity (CSS-1 is very suitable with quartz type of aggregate from Al-Nibaayquarry. From many trial mixes it is found that the best percentages of initial residual bitumencontent to produced adequateresults for coating test ,mixing ,compaction ,curing and Marshallstability were ranged from (2.5%, 3%,3.5%,4% and 4.5%, andthe optimum percentage is(3.5%.Finally it can be conducted that the emulsified asphalt mixture is a suitable alternativemixture to the hot asphalt mixture for road construction and maintenance in Iraq.  

  19. Environmental profile analysis of MDF panels production: study in a brazilian technological condition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cassiano Moro Piekarski

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available The main goal of this study was to analyze the environmental profile of MDF panel manufacturing in the Brazilian industry in terms of energy, emissions and dependence on renewable sources. The study was conducted by using the methodology of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA, specifically through the development of the first Life Cycle Inventory (LCI of MDF in a Brazilian industry. The life cycle inventory and the production processes analysis were constructed using Umberto® v.5.6 software and following the ISO 14040 series. The study covers the life cycle of MDF production from gate-to-gate perspective, involving the on-site manufacturing system. The functional unit was defined in 1 m3 of MDF. About 76% of energy required to produce MDF is thermal (52.8% of thermal energy is required for the drying process of wood fiber. CO2 is a major emission during the MDF production, where natural gas contributes to 96.7% of total CO2 fossils. It was observed a low dependence of non-renewable source (19.2% compared with the literature.

  20. Some Properties of Emulsified Asphalt Paving Mixture at Iraqi Environmental Conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shakir.A.Al-Mishhadani

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Cold emulsified asphalt mixture is generally a mix made of emulsified asphalt withaggregate. Emulsified asphalt is manufactured from base asphalt, emulsifier agent and waterwith approximate percentage of 40% to 75% asphalt, 0.1% to 2.5% emulsifier and 25% to60% water plus some minor components. This study aims to use the cold emulsified asphaltmixtures for road construction and maintenance in Iraq as an alternative to the hot asphaltmixtures, due to its economical, practical and environmental advantages. This studyfocusedto test and evaluates the emulsified asphalt material properties to be used as paving mixture.The tested properties of emulsified asphalt mixture were bulk density, air voids, dry Marshallstability, wet Marshall stability, retained Marshall stability, flow tests and compared with thecommon used specification.The results indicate that the emulsified asphalt type cationic slowsetting low viscosity (CSS-1 is very suitable with quartz type of aggregate from Al-Nibaayquarry. From many trial mixes it is found that the best percentages of initial residual bitumencontent to produced adequateresults for coating test ,mixing ,compaction ,curing and Marshallstability were ranged from (2.5%, 3%,3.5%,4% and 4.5%, andthe optimum percentage is(3.5%.Finally it can be conducted that the emulsified asphalt mixture is a suitable alternativemixture to the hot asphalt mixture for road construction and maintenance in Iraq.

  1. Carotenoids in the Gulf of Gdansk sediments- useful markers of environmental conditions in the past

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krajewska, Magdalena; Szymczak-Żyła, Małgorzata; Kowalewska, Grażyna

    2017-04-01

    Carotenoids are a large group of natural compounds widespread in the aquatic environment. Most of carotenoids in sediments originate from phytoplankton, macroalgae, vascular plants and bacteria. Carotenoids undergo different reactions in water column and after deposition in sediments. Concentration and relative composition of pigments in sediments depend on such factors like primary production, phytoplankton taxonomy, sedimentation and accumulation rate, hydrological and post-depositional conditions. Because some pigments are unstable and can be degraded both by abiotic and biotic factors - in the presence of light, oxygen, herbivores or microorganisms activity, they provide information about conditions in water column and in sediments. They differ in stability and, due to that, carotenoids in marine sediments are indicators, not only of organic matter sources but also of pre- and post-depositional conditions. This work presents a concentration and distribution of selected carotenoids in recent (6 cores 0-20 cm) and deep (1 core, up to 400 cm) sediments of the Gulf of Gdansk- a highly eutrophic area of high primary production and high sedimentation rate. The sediments were collected during two cruises and analysed in framework of CLISED ('Climate Change Impact on Ecosystem Health- Marine Sediment Indicators') Polish- Norwegian research Project, grant no. 196128. Just after collection, the samples were frozen and kept in such a state until analysis in land laboratory. There, after extraction, carotenoids were analysed using high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC-DAD). Sediment age has been defined using C-14 dating. Sediments contained parent carotenoids, markers of the main phytoplankton groups occurring in the Baltic, e.g. diatoms, green algae and cyanobacteria. B-carotene in sediments is a better, averaged, marker of primary production than chlorophyll- a and similarly stable one as sum of chloropigments-a. Presentation will focus on cyanobacteria and their

  2. Influence of high gravity process conditions on the environmental impact of ethanol production from wheat straw

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Janssen, Matty; Tillman, Anne-Marie; Cannella, David

    2014-01-01

    Biofuel production processes at high gravity are currently under development. Most of these processes however use sugars or first generation feedstocks as substrate. This paper presents the results of a life cycle assessment (LCA) of the production of bio-ethanol at high gravity conditions from...... of the ethanol production, but this can be compensated by reducing the impact of enzyme production and use, and by polyethylene glycol addition at high dry matter content. The results also show that the renewable and non-renewable energy use resulting from the different process configurations ultimately...

  3. Overwintering growth and development of larval Euphausia superba: an interannual comparison under varying environmental conditions west of the Antarctic Peninsula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daly, Kendra L.

    2004-08-01

    Growth, molting, and development of larval Antarctic krill were investigated near Marguerite Bay during four cruises in austral autumn and winter 2001 and 2002, as part of the US Southern Ocean GLOBEC program. Overwintering survival of larvae has been linked to annual sea-ice formation and extent, as sea-ice biota may provide food when other sources are scarce in the water column. During autumn 2001, larvae were very abundant (1-19 individuals m -3), with younger stages dominant offshelf and older stages dominant on-shelf. On-shelf larvae were in better condition than offshore larvae. During autumn 2002, larvae again were abundant offshelf (0.01-110 m -3), whereas all stages were scarce on-shelf. Declining diatom and radiolarian blooms were present during autumn in both years. Average chlorophyll concentrations were low (0.10 vs. 0.22 μg l -1) in autumn and an order of magnitude lower in winter. Carbon content of larvae during autumn 2001 and 2002 (41% vs. 38% C of DW) suggested that lipid storage was moderate. The median autumn larval growth rate (0.027 mm d -1) was lower and the intermolt period (19 d) longer than reported summer values. During winter, larvae appeared to be food-limited based on the following observations: (1) the median growth rate decreased (0.00 mm d -1) and the intermolt period increased (40 d), (2) larval length-specific dry weight (DW) and % carbon and nitrogen of DW decreased, and (3) 88% of furcilia 6 did not develop to the juvenile stage, but remained at the same stage after molting. Experimental results demonstrated that some larvae could survive starvation for a month by combusting body reserves (ca. 1% decrease in DW and body C and N d -1), implying that a portion of the population was resilient to the suboptimal food supply. Although sea ice formed up to 2 months earlier in 2002, ice algae at the ice-water interface, where it is accessible to krill, was not an abundant food source in either year (0.05 vs. 0.07 μg chl l -1). In

  4. Environmental conditions differentially affect neurobehavioral outcomes in a mouse model of sepsis-associated encephalopathy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ji, Mu-Huo; Tang, Hui; Luo, Dan; Qiu, Li-Li; Jia, Min; Yuan, Hong-Mei; Feng, Shan-Wu; Yang, Jian-Jun

    2017-01-01

    Brain dysfunction remains a common complication after sepsis development and is an independent risk factor for a poorer prognosis and an increased mortality. Here we tested the hypothesis that the behavioral outcomes after lipopolysaccharides (LPS) administration are exacerbated by an impoverished environment (IE) and alleviated by an enriched environment (EE), respectively. Mice were randomly allocated in a standard environment (SE), an EE, or an IE for 4 weeks after LPS or normal saline (NS) administration. Neurobehavioral alternations were assessed by the open field, novel objective recognition, and fear conditioning tests. The expressions of proinflammatory cytokines (tumor necrosis factor (TNF-α), interleukin-1β (IL-1β), IL-6, IL-10), ionized calcium-binding adaptor molecule-1 (IBA1)-positive cells as well as glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP)-positive cells, brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), 5-bromo-2-deoxyuridine-labeled cells in the dentate gyrus of the hippocampus, and the number of dendritic spines in the hippocampal CA1 were determined. Our results showed that the some of the neurocognitive abnormalities induced by LPS administration can be aggravated by stressful conditions such as IE but alleviated by EE. These neurocognitive alternations were accompanied by significant changes in biomarkers of immune response and hippocampal synaptic plasticity. In summary, our study confirmed the negative impact of IE and the positive effects of EE on the cognitive function after LPS administration, with potential implications to the basis of sepsis-related cognitive impairments in the critically ill patients. PMID:29137271

  5. Transcriptional Response of Desulfovibrio vulgaris Hildenborough to Oxidative Stress Mimicking Environmental Conditions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pereira, Patricia M.; He, Qiang; Xavier, Antonio V.; Zhou, Jizhong; Pereira, Ines A.C.; Louro, Ricardo O.

    2008-03-12

    Sulphate-reducing bacteria are anaerobes readily found in oxic-anoxic interfaces. Multiple defence pathways against oxidative conditions were identified in these organisms and proposed to be differentially expressed under different concentrations of oxygen, contributing to their ability to survive oxic conditions. In this study, Desulfovibrio vulgaris Hildenborough cells were exposed to the highest concentration of oxygen that sulphate-reducing bacteria are likely to encounter in natural habitats, and the global transcriptomic response was determined. 307 genes were responsive, with cellular roles in energy metabolism, protein fate, cell envelope and regulatory functions, including multiple genes encoding heat shock proteins, peptidases and proteins with heat shock promoters. Of the oxygen reducing mechanisms of D. vulgaris only the periplasmic hydrogen-dependent mechanism is up-regulated, involving the [NiFeSe]hydrogenase, formate dehydrogenase(s) and the Hmc membrane complex. The oxidative defence response concentrates on damage repair by metal-free enzymes. These data, together with the down regulation of the Fur operon, which restricts the availability of iron, and the lack of response of the PerR operon, suggest that a major effect of this oxygen stress is the inactivation and/or degradation of multiple metalloproteins present in D. vulgaris as a consequence of oxidative damage to their metal clusters.

  6. The effects of maternal education on child nutritional status depend on socio-environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reed, B A; Habicht, J P; Niameogo, C

    1996-06-01

    Previous studies have shown an inconsistency in the association between maternal education and child nutritional status across socioeconomic levels. This may be because the beneficial effects of education are only significant when resources are sufficient but not abundant. Associations were examined for differences across socioeconomic levels using data collected from 41 rural communities of Benin for 435 children aged 13-36 months. Village level indicators of household wealth were used together with child z-scores to partition the sample into three levels of socio-environment relative to conditions more or less conducive to child growth. Using an interactive linear regression model it was shown that for the population of children of women who had no more than 4 years of formal schooling, the association of maternal education and child weight differed significantly across the socio-environment. The relationship was flat and non-significant in the lowest socio-environment, positive and significant (P best socio-environment conditions. Among children of mothers attaining higher levels of education, an unexpected negative association was found. It could be that maternal education had enabled women to participate in activities outside the home without simultaneously ensuring adequate child care.

  7. Effects of Burn Severity and Environmental Conditions on Post-Fire Regeneration in Siberian Larch Forest

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thuan Chu

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Post-fire forest regeneration is strongly influenced by abiotic and biotic heterogeneity in the pre- and post-fire environments, including fire regimes, species characteristics, landforms, hydrology, regional climate, and soil properties. Assessing these drivers is key to understanding the long-term effects of fire disturbances on forest succession. We evaluated multiple factors influencing patterns of variability in a post-fire boreal Larch (Larix sibirica forest in Siberia. A time-series of remote sensing images was analyzed to estimate post-fire recovery as a response variable across the burned area in 1996. Our results suggested that burn severity and water content were primary controllers of both Larch forest recruitment and green vegetation cover as defined by the forest recovery index (FRI and the fractional vegetation cover (FVC, respectively. We found a high rate of Larch forest recruitment in sites of moderate burn severity, while a more severe burn was the preferable condition for quick occupation by vegetation that included early seral communities of shrubs, grasses, conifers and broadleaf trees. Sites close to water and that received higher solar energy during the summer months showed a higher rate of both recovery types, defined by the FRI and FVC, dependent on burn severity. In addition to these factors, topographic variables and pre-fire condition were important predictors of post-fire forest patterns. These results have direct implications for the post-fire forest management in the Siberian boreal Larch region.

  8. Fine powder flow under humid environmental conditions from the perspective of surface energy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karde, Vikram; Ghoroi, Chinmay

    2015-05-15

    The influence of humidity on surface energetics and flow behavior of fine pharmaceutical powders was investigated. Amorphous and crystalline fine powders with hydrophilic (Corn starch and Avicel PH105) and hydrophobic (ibuprofen) nature were considered for this study. The surface energy was determined using surface energy analyzer and flow behavior was measured in terms of unconfined yield stress (UYS) using a shear tester. The study showed that unlike hydrophobic ibuprofen powder, surface energy and flow of hydrophilic excipient powders were affected by relative humidity (RH). The Lifshitz-van der Waals dispersive (γ(LW)) component of surface energy barely changed with varying RH for all pharmaceutical powders. For hydrophilic excipients, the specific component of surface energy (γ(SP)) was found to increase with increasing RH. Furthermore, for these excipients, flow deterioration at elevated RH was observed due to increased capillary bridge formation. Detailed analysis showed that γ(SP) component of surface energy can be an effective indicator for flow behavior of fine powders under varying humid conditions. The present study also brought out the existence of different regimes of probable interparticle forces which dictate the bulk flow behavior of fine hydrophilic powder under humid conditions. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Beyond mental health: an evolutionary analysis of development under risky and supportive environmental conditions: an introduction to the special section.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellis, Bruce J; Bjorklund, David F

    2012-05-01

    Evolutionary approaches to behavior have increasingly captured the attention and imagination of academics and laypeople alike. One part of this trend has been the increasing influence of evolutionary theory in developmental science. The articles in this special section of Developmental Psychology attempt to demonstrate why an evolutionary analysis is needed to more fully understand the contexts and contingencies of development. The 3 theoretical articles articulate the core evolutionary logic underlying conditional adaptation (and maladaptation) to both stressful and supportive environmental conditions over development. These theoretical articles are then followed by 9 empirical articles that test these evolutionary-developmental theories and hypotheses. Finally, 6 commentaries evaluate the prospects, pitfalls, and implications of this body of work.

  10. Not Noisy, Just Wrong: The Role of Suboptimal Inference in Behavioral Variability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beck, Jeffrey M.; Ma, Wei Ji; Pitkow, Xaq; Latham, Peter E.; Pouget, Alexandre

    2015-01-01

    Behavior varies from trial to trial even when the stimulus is maintained as constant as possible. In many models, this variability is attributed to noise in the brain. Here, we propose that there is another major source of variability: suboptimal inference. Importantly, we argue that in most tasks of interest, and particularly complex ones, suboptimal inference is likely to be the dominant component of behavioral variability. This perspective explains a variety of intriguing observations, including why variability appears to be larger on the sensory than on the motor side, and why our sensors are sometimes surprisingly unreliable. PMID:22500627

  11. Frequency and predictors of suboptimal glycemic control in an African diabetic population

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kibirige D

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Davis Kibirige,1 George Patrick Akabwai,2 Leaticia Kampiire,3 Daniel Ssekikubo Kiggundu,4 William Lumu5 1Department of Medicine/Diabetic and Hypertension Clinics, Our Lady of Consolota Hospital, Kisubi, 2Baylor College of Medicine, Children’s Foundation, 3Infectious Diseases Research Collaboration, Kampala, 4Nephrology Unit, Mulago National Referral and Teaching Hospital, Kampala, 5Department of Medicine and Diabetes/Endocrine Unit, Mengo Hospital, Mengo, Uganda Background: Persistent suboptimal glycemic control is invariably associated with onset and progression of acute and chronic diabetic complications in diabetic patients. In Uganda, studies documenting the magnitude and predictors of suboptimal glycemic control in adult ambulatory diabetic patients are limited. This study aimed at determining the frequency and predictors of suboptimal glycemic control in adult diabetic patients attending three urban outpatient diabetic clinics in Uganda. Methods: In this hospital-based cross-sectional study, eligible ambulatory adult diabetic patients attending outpatient diabetic clinics of three urban hospitals were consecutively enrolled over 11 months. Suboptimal glycemic control was defined as glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c level ≥7%. Multivariable analysis was applied to determine the predictors. Results: The mean age of the study participants was 52.2±14.4 years, and the majority of them were females (283, 66.9%. The median (interquartile range HbA1c level was 9% (6.8%–12.4%. Suboptimal glycemic control was noted in 311 study participants, accounting for 73.52% of the participants. HbA1c levels of 7%–8%, 8.1%–9.9%, and ≥10% were noted in 56 (13.24%, 76 (17.97%, and 179 (42.32% study participants, respectively. The documented predictors of suboptimal glycemic control were metformin monotherapy (odds ratio: 0.36, 95% confidence interval: 0.21–0.63, p<0.005 and insulin therapy (odds ratio: 2.41, 95% confidence interval: 1.41–4.12, p=0

  12. Environmental education as preparation people for life in conditions of global changes imbalanced Nature

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dabrowska, A. E.

    2013-12-01

    The Regional Teacher Training Centre in Skierniewice is one of 49 public, accredited institutions in Poland. It is responsible for organizing of support of schools, institutions, networks of teachers and school managers for cooperation and self education, organizing and conducting forms of in-service training, giving methodological councils and disseminating examples of good practice. I present one example of how Environmental Education has been imparted to school students and their teachers through outdoor activities as part of the learning process. An Environmental Education Program, 'On Bolimov Nature Preserve Trails' has been organized regularly since 2001. The Bolimov Nature Preserve is a protected area in central Poland, situated between two agglomerations: capital city Warsaw to the East and industrial city Lodz to the West. It was established to protect an unique ecosystem on the Rawka River banks from human activity and harmful external factors. Pine tree forests, small streams, wetlands, glades are another elements of the park scenery. Walks on the park's trails are a great opportunity to see unique species of flora (more than 40 protected species and many endangered species on verge of extinction) and fauna. For teachers and students the Bolimov Nature Preserve offers educational lessons and events. The main activity is participation of students and teachers in group walk along trails of the park using various tools of orientation: maps, compasses and GPS. Along the paths they learn recognition of forms of terrain, identification of living species (using flora&fauna guides, magnifying glasses), measuring components of weather (using weather atlases, thermometers, anemometers) as well as preparation of soil profile. A survey is conducted after each such program. A statistical analysis of the survey data reveals that each year more and more students representing all levels of education from primary to upper secondary levels and their teachers are involved

  13. Elements of metacommunity structure in Amazonian Zygoptera among streams under different spatial scales and environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brasil, Leandro Schlemmer; Vieira, Thiago Bernardi; de Oliveira-Junior, José Max Barbosa; Dias-Silva, Karina; Juen, Leandro

    2017-05-01

    An important aspect of conservation is to understand the founding elements and characteristics of metacommunities in natural environments, and the consequences of anthropogenic disturbance on these patterns. In natural Amazonian environments, the interfluves of the major rivers play an important role in the formation of areas of endemism through the historical isolation of species and the speciation process. We evaluated elements of metacommunity structure for Zygoptera (Insecta: Odonata) sampled in 93 Amazonian streams distributed in two distinct biogeographic regions (areas of endemism). Of sampled streams, 43 were considered to have experienced negligible anthropogenic impacts, and 50 were considered impacted by anthropogenic activities. Our hypothesis was that preserved ("negligible impact") streams would present a Clementsian pattern, forming clusters of distinct species, reflecting the biogeographic pattern of the two regions, and that anthropogenic streams would present random patterns of metacommunity, due to the loss of more sensitive species and dominance of more tolerant species, which have higher dispersal ability and environmental tolerance. In negligible impact streams, the Clementsian pattern reflected a strong biogeographic pattern, which we discuss considering the areas of endemism of Amazonian rivers. As for communities in human-impacted streams, a biotic homogenization was evident, in which rare species were suppressed and the most common species had become hyper-dominant. Understanding the mechanisms that trigger changes in metacommunities is an important issue for conservation, because they can help create mitigation measures for the impacts of anthropogenic activities on biological communities, and so should be expanded to studies using other taxonomic groups in both tropical and temperate systems, and, wherever possible, at multiple spatial scales.

  14. Incubation of solid state C60 fullerene under UV irradiation mimicking environmentally relevant conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carboni, Andrea; Helmus, Rick; Parsons, John R; Kalbitz, Karsten; de Voogt, Pim

    2017-05-01

    Carbon-based nanomaterials, such as C60 fullerenes, are expected to accumulate in soil due to direct release and deposition from the atmosphere. However, little is known about the environmental fate of these nanoparticles which may be susceptible to photochemical and microbial degradation. In the present work, C60 was incubated for a period of 28 days and irradiated with UVA light. Three experiments were carried out where the fullerenes were either spiked onto a glass surface or added to quartz sand or sandy soil samples. At specific time intervals the samples were extracted and analysed by liquid chromatography coupled to UV or high resolution mass spectrometric (HRMS) detection. The fullerenes were degraded in all the treatments and the decay followed a pseudo-first-order rate law. In absence of a solid matrix, the half-life (t1⁄2) of the C60 was 13.1 days, with an overall degradation of 45.1% that was accompanied by the formation of functionalized C60-like structures. Furthermore, mass spectrometric analysis highlighted the presence of a large number of transformation products that were not directly related to the irradiation and presented opened cage and oxidized structures. When C60 was spiked into solid matrices the degradation occurred at a faster rate (t1⁄2 of 4.5 and 0.8 days for quartz sand and sandy soil, respectively). Minor but consistent losses were found in the non-irradiated samples, presumably due to biotic or chemical processes occurring in these samples. The results of this study suggest that light-mediated transformation of the fullerenes will occur in the environment. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. The effect of environmental conditions on biofilm formation of Burkholderia pseudomallei clinical isolates.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nur Siti K Ramli

    Full Text Available Burkholderia pseudomallei, a Gram-negative saprophytic bacterium, is the causative agent of the potentially fatal melioidosis disease in humans. In this study, environmental parameters including temperature, nutrient content, pH and the presence of glucose were shown to play a role in in vitro biofilm formation by 28 B. pseudomallei clinical isolates, including four isolates with large colony variants (LCVs and small colony variants (SCVs morphotypes. Enhanced biofilm formation was observed when the isolates were tested in LB medium, at 30 °C, at pH 7.2, and in the presence of as little as 2 mM glucose respectively. It was also shown that all SVCs displayed significantly greater capacity to form biofilms than the corresponding LCVs when cultured in LB at 37 °C. In addition, octanoyl-homoserine lactone (C(8-HSL, a quorum sensing molecule, was identified by mass spectrometry analysis in bacterial isolates referred to as LCV CTH, LCV VIT, SCV TOM, SCV CTH, 1 and 3, and the presence of other AHL's with higher masses; decanoyl-homoserine lactone (C(10-HSL and dodecanoyl-homoserine lactone (C(12-HSL were also found in all tested strain in this study. Last but not least, we had successfully acquired two Bacillus sp. soil isolates, termed KW and SA respectively, which possessed strong AHLs degradation activity. Biofilm formation of B. pseudomallei isolates was significantly decreased after treated with culture supernatants of KW and SA strains, demonstrating that AHLs may play a role in B. pseudomallei biofilm formation.

  16. The effect of environmental conditions on expression of Bacteroides fragilis and Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron C10 protease genes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thornton, Roibeard F; Murphy, Elizabeth C; Kagawa, Todd F; O'Toole, Paul W; Cooney, Jakki C

    2012-09-03

    Bacteroides fragilis and Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron are members of the normal human intestinal microbiota. However, both organisms are capable of causing opportunistic infections, during which the environmental conditions to which the bacteria are exposed change dramatically. To further explore their potential for contributing to infection, we have characterized the expression in B. thetaiotaomicron of four homologues of the gene encoding the C10 cysteine protease SpeB, a potent extracellular virulence factor produced by Streptococcus pyogenes. We identified a paralogous set of genes (btp genes) in the B. thetaiotaomicron genome, that were related to C10 protease genes we recently identified in B. fragilis. Similar to C10 proteases found in B. fragilis, three of the B. thetaiotaomicron homologues were transcriptionally coupled to genes encoding small proteins that are similar in structural architecture to Staphostatins, protease inhibitors associated with Staphopains in Staphylococcus aureus. The expression of genes for these C10 proteases in both B. fragilis and B. thetaiotaomicron was found to be regulated by environmental stimuli, in particular by exposure to oxygen, which may be important for their contribution to the development of opportunistic infections. Genes encoding C10 proteases are increasingly identified in operons which also contain genes encoding proteins homologous to protease inhibitors. The Bacteroides C10 protease gene expression levels are responsive to different environmental stimuli suggesting they may have distinct roles in the bacterial-host interaction.

  17. The effect of environmental conditions on expression of Bacteroides fragilis and Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron C10 protease genes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thornton Roibeard F

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Bacteroides fragilis and Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron are members of the normal human intestinal microbiota. However, both organisms are capable of causing opportunistic infections, during which the environmental conditions to which the bacteria are exposed change dramatically. To further explore their potential for contributing to infection, we have characterized the expression in B. thetaiotaomicron of four homologues of the gene encoding the C10 cysteine protease SpeB, a potent extracellular virulence factor produced by Streptococcus pyogenes. Results We identified a paralogous set of genes (btp genes in the B. thetaiotaomicron genome, that were related to C10 protease genes we recently identified in B. fragilis. Similar to C10 proteases found in B. fragilis, three of the B. thetaiotaomicron homologues were transcriptionally coupled to genes encoding small proteins that are similar in structural architecture to Staphostatins, protease inhibitors associated with Staphopains in Staphylococcus aureus. The expression of genes for these C10 proteases in both B. fragilis and B. thetaiotaomicron was found to be regulated by environmental stimuli, in particular by exposure to oxygen, which may be important for their contribution to the development of opportunistic infections. Conclusions Genes encoding C10 proteases are increasingly identified in operons which also contain genes encoding proteins homologous to protease inhibitors. The Bacteroides C10 protease gene expression levels are responsive to different environmental stimuli suggesting they may have distinct roles in the bacterial-host interaction.

  18. Integrated measures for preservation, restoration and improvement of the environmental conditions of the Lagoon Olho d'Agua basin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Florencio, L; Kato, M T; de Lima, E S

    2001-06-01

    The Lagoon Olho d'Agua in Pernambuco State, Northeast Brazil has received increasing environmental concern due to significant stress from pollution in the catchment. The existing environmental problems are the result of great pressure from a broad range of human activities, especially in the last 10 years. Serious pollution exists mainly from some industrial and urban activities, which increased intensively after the eighties. There is a strong social and economical pressure for housing and construction near the lagoon, due to the available land nearby beaches and estuarine zone, and recently by growing tourism activities. Uncontrolled land use by low-income communities and the pressure for construction by developers have led to landfilling and to deterioration of water quality in the lagoon catchment. Improvement of the environmental conditions in the catchment needs integrated measures. Guidelines and some specific actions involving several institutions have been established and refer to sanitation and urban infrastructure as the main priorities. A main target is the construction of low-cost sewage system with smaller and decentralised treatment plants.

  19. Environmental risk of climate change and groundwater abstraction on stream ecological conditions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Seaby, Lauren Paige; Bøgh, Eva; Jensen, Niels H.

    climate from 11 ENSEMBLES climate models are first bias corrected with a distribution based scaling method and then used to force hydrological simulations of stream discharge, groundwater recharge, and nitrate leaching from the root zone. Hydrological modelling utilises a sequential coupling methodology......A doubling of groundwater abstraction rates has been proposed in selected areas of Denmark to meet water resource demands. Combined with projected climate change, which is characterised by increased annual temperature, precipitation, and evapotranspiration rates for the country, the impacts to low...... flows and groundwater levels are of interest, as they relate to aquatic habitat and nitrate leaching, respectively. This study evaluates the risk to stream ecological conditions for a lowland Danish catchment under multiple scenarios of climate change and groundwater abstraction. Projections of future...

  20. Approaching on Colorimetric Change of Porous Calcareous Rocks Exposed in Urban Environmental Conditions from Iasi - Romania

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pelin, V.; Rusu, O.; Sandu, I.; Vasilache, V.; Gurlui, S.; Sandu, A. V.; Cazacu, M. M.; Sandu, I. G.

    2017-06-01

    According to the scientific literature, the pollution phenomenon is strongly related by the urban activity from the last decades, with direct effects on the state of conservation of the stone constructions also. This paper presents a preliminary study on the colorimetric evolution of the lithic surfaces exposed under strongly traffic influence from the urban microclimate conditions. The analysed lithic surfaces are similar with the building stone from the structure of an historical monument (from 19th century), such as the Stone Bridge in Iasi-Romania, located in the immediate vicinity of the roadside loop with the same name. The colour change monitoring for the above-mentioned geomaterials aims at anticipating the effects of postponing the decongestion of car traffic and implicitly initiating the assessment of the effects of pollution over this historic monument, which is in an advanced state of deterioration and degradation.

  1. Study on seasonal IR signature change of a ship by considering seasonal marine environmental conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Do-Hwi; Han, Kuk-Il; Choi, Jun-Hyuk; Kim, Tae-Kuk

    2017-05-01

    Infrared (IR) signal emitted from objects over 0 degree Kelvin has been used to detect and recognize the characteristics of those objects. Recently more delicate IR sensors have been applied for various guided missiles and they affect a crucial influence on object's survivability. Especially, in marine environment it is more vulnerable to be attacked by IR guided missiles since there are nearly no objects for concealment. To increase the survivability of object, the IR signal of the object needs to be analyzed properly by considering various marine environments. IR signature of a naval ship consists of the emitted energy from ship surface and the reflected energy by external sources. Surface property such as the emissivity and the absorptivity on the naval ship varies with different paints applied on the surface and the reflected IR signal is also affected by the surface radiative property, the sensor's geometric position and various climatic conditions in marine environment. Since the direct measurement of IR signal using IR camera is costly and time consuming job, computer simulation methods are developing rapidly to replace those experimental tasks. In this study, we are demonstrate a way of analyzing the IR signal characteristics by using the measured background IR signals using an IR camera and the estimated target IR signals from the computer simulation to find the seasonal trends of IR threats of a naval ship. Through this process, measured weather data are used to analyze more accurate IR signal conditions for the naval ship. The seasonal change of IR signal contrast between the naval ship and the marine background shows that the highest contrast radiant intensity (CRI) value is appeared in early summer.

  2. The environmental conditionings of the location of primeval settlements in the Wieprz River valley

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kozieł, Marcin; Kozieł, Wojciech

    2012-01-01

    The Wieprz River along the section currently occupied by the Nadwieprzański Landscape Park (NLP) constituted a convenient place of human settlement from the moment of retreat of the last ice sheet. Depending on the types of economy preferred by representatives of individual archaeological cultures, the river valley from Spiczyn to Dorohucza offered continuous access to water. This obviously gained additional importance from the moment of appearance of Neolithic cultures, particularly the Globular Amphora culture and Corded Ware culture with semi-nomadic style of life, dealing with breeding. Neolithic hunters-gatherers exploited the animal resources available in the river and its vicinity. The further role of fishing, i.e. providing a diet element or supplementation already in the conditions of agricultural-breeding economy, seems to be evidenced by findings of fishing hooks at Lusatian and Wielbark sites. Another factor affecting the location of settlements in NLP was also its close vicinity to the crops of the Rejowiec flint. According to archaeologists, this is particularly obvious in the case of the Late Palaeolithic and the turn of the Neolithic and Bronze Age. The communication function of the river could also be of importance: in the case of seasonal animal migrations of animals and hunters (Late Palaeolithic); livestock and shepherds (Globular Amphora culture and Corded Ware culture); or people alone (migration of the population of the Wielbark culture to the Red Sea). The fact that a commercial trail fragment was located along the Wieprz River is probably evidenced by the abundance of import from various parts of Europe at site 53 in Spiczyn. Fertile soils (black soils, silt-peat soils) prevailing in the valley also favoured the settlement of cultures with an agricultural-breeding model of economy, providing good conditions for horticulture. Meadows near the river could be used as pastures.

  3. Environmental conditions during the Frasnian-Fammenian mass extinction inferred from chlorophyll-derived porphyrin biomarkers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uveges, B. T.; Junium, C. K.; Cohen, P. A.; Boyer, D.

    2014-12-01

    The widespread mass extinction that occurred across the Frasnian- Fammenian (F-F) boundary was one of the largest losses of biodiversity in Earth's history. The F-F extinction interval is expressed in western New York State by two organic rich black shale intervals known as the Upper and Lower Kellwasser events. These shale intervals are well preserved, thermally immature, and are well constrained in age by conodont biostratigraphy, and thus provide an exceptional opportunity to study the organic material originating from the F-F boundary. In order to test hypotheses about the cause(s) and consequences of the FF biotic crisis, a broader knowledge of the organic carbon sources is needed, and a characterization of the marine primary producer communities will assist in this endeavor. One such avenue is through the study of chlorophyll-derived biomarkers (porphyrins). The organic extracts of powdered shale samples from the Kellwasser horizons were analyzed using HPLC/LC-MSn and diode array UV-Vis spectroscopy. Preliminary data from the Kellwasser intervals reveal only one porphyrin, with a mass (M+H) of 600. The UV-Vis absorbance spectrum (Soret = 405nm, α = 533nm, β = 570nm) of the metallated compound is consistent with that of a vanadyl porphyrin with a free-base (M+H) of 535. Collision-induced mass spectra displays mass losses of 43 and 57 daltons, which are consistent with an extended alkyl chain at the C-8 position. Extended alkyl chains at C-8 are exclusively associated with porphyrins derived from bacteriochlorophyll c, d or e. The presence of bacterioporphyrins is congruous with the episodic presence of anoxic and sulfidic conditions in the photic zone. What is surprising is that a bacteriochlorophyll- derived porphyrin is the most abundant in these sequences, and their study may help to elucidate the conditions surrounding the F-F mass extinction, and further constrain the fluctuations in marine oxygen content in the Upper Devonian Appalachian Basin.

  4. Random Forest-Based Approach for Maximum Power Point Tracking of Photovoltaic Systems Operating under Actual Environmental Conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shareef, Hussain; Mutlag, Ammar Hussein; Mohamed, Azah

    2017-01-01

    Many maximum power point tracking (MPPT) algorithms have been developed in recent years to maximize the produced PV energy. These algorithms are not sufficiently robust because of fast-changing environmental conditions, efficiency, accuracy at steady-state value, and dynamics of the tracking algorithm. Thus, this paper proposes a new random forest (RF) model to improve MPPT performance. The RF model has the ability to capture the nonlinear association of patterns between predictors, such as irradiance and temperature, to determine accurate maximum power point. A RF-based tracker is designed for 25 SolarTIFSTF-120P6 PV modules, with the capacity of 3 kW peak using two high-speed sensors. For this purpose, a complete PV system is modeled using 300,000 data samples and simulated using the MATLAB/SIMULINK package. The proposed RF-based MPPT is then tested under actual environmental conditions for 24 days to validate the accuracy and dynamic response. The response of the RF-based MPPT model is also compared with that of the artificial neural network and adaptive neurofuzzy inference system algorithms for further validation. The results show that the proposed MPPT technique gives significant improvement compared with that of other techniques. In addition, the RF model passes the Bland-Altman test, with more than 95 percent acceptability.

  5. The relationships between environmental and physiological heat stress indices in Muslim women under the controlled thermal conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peymaneh Habibi

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Aims: The aim of this study was to evaluate the relationship between environmental and physiological heat stress indices based on heart rate (HR, oral temperature for the estimation of heat strain, in veiled women in hot-dry condition in the climate chamber. Materials and Methods: The experimental study was carried out on 36 healthy Muslim women in hot-dry climatic conditions (wet bulb globe temperature (WBGT = 22-32°C in low workload for 2 h. The HR, oral temperature and WBGT index were measured. The obtained data were analyzed using descriptive statistics and Pearson correlation tests. Results: The results of the Pearson test indicated that physiological strain index was a high correlation (r = 0.975 with WBGT index (P < 0.05. Also, there was a good correlation among WBGT and HR (r = 0.779 and oral temperature (r = 0.981. Conclusion: The findings of this study illustrated that there is a good correlation between environmental and physiological heat stress indices in veiled women with Islamic clothing at the low workload over the action limit (WBGT = 31°C. So that it can be concluded that the WBGT 22-32°C is a good indicator of the heat strain in veiled women with Islamic clothing.

  6. Phyllopshere Bacterial Community Structure of Spinach (Spinacia oleracea as Affected by Cultivar and Environmental Conditions at Time of Harvest

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joseph O. Falkinham III

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Modern molecular ecology techniques were used to demonstrate the effects of plant genotype and environmental conditions prior to harvest on the spinach epiphytic bacterial community. Three cultivars of spinach with different leaf topographies were collected at three different periods during the fall growing season. Leaf surface topography had an effect on diversity and number of culturable bacteria on the phylloepiphtyic community of spinach. Savoy cultivars, which had larger surface area and more stomata and glandular trichomes, where bacterial aggregates were observed, featured more diverse communities with increased richness and larger bacterial populations compared to flat-leaved cultivars. Bacterial community richness was compared using denaturant gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE, while abundance was quantified using 16s rRNA primers for major phyla. The most diverse communities, both in richness and abundance, were observed during the first sampling period, immediately following a period of rapid spinach growth. Exposure to lower air and soil temperatures and decreased precipitation resulted in significantly reduced bacterial population size and bacterial community richness in November and December. This study describes the effect of the plant characteristics and environmental conditions that affect spinach microbiota population size and diversity, which might have implications in the survival of food and plant bacterial pathogens.

  7. Calculated characters of leaves are independent on environmental conditions in Salix herbacea (Salicaceae and Betula nana (Betulaceae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katarzyna Marcysiak

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available The goal of the study was to check if the shape-describing characters, calculated as ratios of the morphological measured traits are more stable, compared to the latter, and can be treated as independent on environmental conditions. The test was based on the example of leaves of Salix herbacea and Betula nana. The individuals of the two populations of S. herbacea from Tatra Mts. were divided into two groups: with bigger and smaller leaves. The two populations of B. nana came from different substrata: the first one, collected from the mire on the lower altitude, had bigger leaves, and the second, collected from the granite plateau and higher altitude, had smaller leaves. For both species, the measured traits were generally more variable than the ratios calculated on their basis, as expressed by the variation coefficients. The results of Students' t-test analyses showed statistically significant differences between the two groups of S. herbacea and the two populations of B. nana with respect to almost all the measured characters, and no such differences for the calculated traits, reflecting the leaf shape. As the differentiation of the leaf size was probably bound to the environmental factors, the lack of the dependence of the leaf shape on the leaf size could lead to a conclusion of independence of the leaf shape on the environment conditions.

  8. Seasonal variation of shallow-to-deep convection transition and its link to the environmental conditions over the Central Amazon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhuang, Yizhou; Fu, Rong; Marengo, José A.; Wang, Hongqing

    2017-03-01

    This study aims to characterize the seasonal variation of the shallow-to-deep convection transition and understand how environmental conditions impact the behavior of this transition using data collected from the Observations and Modeling of the Green Ocean Amazon (GOAmazon) field campaign in the Central Amazon (Manaus). The diurnal cycle of the rain/cloud fraction shows that the wet season has more extensive shallow convection before the transition to deep convection with larger fractional coverage and rainfall; deep convection in the transition season is more intense and has higher vertical extension and a stronger updraft. Surface meteorology, atmospheric moisture, instability, and wind shear are contrasted for the shallow/congestus convection (SC) cases and the locally formed shallow-to-deep convection transition (LD) cases. The comparisons suggest that occurrence of the LD is generally promoted under the conditions of high atmospheric moisture and instability but has a weaker dependence on wind shear. The relative importance of these environmental controls also varies in different seasons: The dry and transition seasons require a deeper moist layer from the boundary layer to midtroposphere than the wet season; convective available potential energy (CAPE) is higher during the transition season, but it is a less important factor for shallow-to-deep convection transition than in other seasons; LD only has significantly larger wind shears than SC during the dry season.

  9. Analysis of Major Nutritional Components of Pleurotus pulmonarius During the Cultivation in Different Indoor Environmental Conditions on Sawdust

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tariqul Islam

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Pleurotus pulmonarius was cultivated in three different environmental conditions, in ambient indoor environment (System 1, in humidifying without ventilation (System 2 and in humidifying with ventilation (System 3 to analyse the major nutritional contents. Sawdust was the main substrate for all the cultivation systems. The lowest temperature and the highest optimal humidity were found in System 3. The temperature and humidity had shown statistically significant among the three cultivation Systems. The highest numbers of flushes was found both in System 2 and System 3 but System 1 was produced mushrooms till 3rd flush. About 29.5%, 28.3%, 28.5% protein; 59.0%, 55.8%, 54.3% carbohydrate and 3.8%, 3.5%, 3.3% lipid were found in System 1, System 2 and System 3 respectively. The protein, carbohydrate, and lipid contents were shown statistically insignificant among the cultivation systems. The highest value of protein, carbohydrate and lipid were found for the sample of 1st flush in all the cultivation systems but the values were started to decrease with the increased numbers of flushes significantly. So, this study shown that, although the environmental conditions of the three cultivation systems were varied significantly but the protein, carbohydrate and lipid contents were existed their normal values in all cases but the values were decreased by the increased numbers of flushes.

  10. Random Forest-Based Approach for Maximum Power Point Tracking of Photovoltaic Systems Operating under Actual Environmental Conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hussain Shareef

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Many maximum power point tracking (MPPT algorithms have been developed in recent years to maximize the produced PV energy. These algorithms are not sufficiently robust because of fast-changing environmental conditions, efficiency, accuracy at steady-state value, and dynamics of the tracking algorithm. Thus, this paper proposes a new random forest (RF model to improve MPPT performance. The RF model has the ability to capture the nonlinear association of patterns between predictors, such as irradiance and temperature, to determine accurate maximum power point. A RF-based tracker is designed for 25 SolarTIFSTF-120P6 PV modules, with the capacity of 3 kW peak using two high-speed sensors. For this purpose, a complete PV system is modeled using 300,000 data samples and simulated using the MATLAB/SIMULINK package. The proposed RF-based MPPT is then tested under actual environmental conditions for 24 days to validate the accuracy and dynamic response. The response of the RF-based MPPT model is also compared with that of the artificial neural network and adaptive neurofuzzy inference system algorithms for further validation. The results show that the proposed MPPT technique gives significant improvement compared with that of other techniques. In addition, the RF model passes the Bland–Altman test, with more than 95 percent acceptability.

  11. Static and dynamic mooring analysis – Stability of floating production storage and offloading (FPSO risers for extreme environmental conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yu-Ho Rho

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Floating production storage and offloading (FPSO facilities are used at most of the offshore oil fields worldwide. FPSO usage is expected to grow as oil fields move to deeper water, thus requiring the reliability and stability of mooring wires and risers in extreme environmental conditions. Except for the case of predictable attack angles of external loadings, FPSO facilities with turret single point mooring (SPM systems are in general use. There are two types of turret systems: permanent systems and disconnectable turret mooring systems. Extreme environment criteria for permanent moorings are usually based on a 100-year return period event. It is common to use two or three environments including the 100-year wave with associated wind and current, and the 100-year wind with associated waves and current. When fitted with a disconnectable turret mooring system, FPSOs can be used in areas where it is desirable to remove the production unit from the field temporarily to prevent exposure to extreme events such as cyclones or large icebergs. Static and dynamic mooring analyses were performed to evaluate the stability of a spider buoy after disconnection from a turret during cyclone environmental conditions.

  12. Functional ecology of saltglands in shorebirds: Flexible responses to variable environmental conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gutierrez, J.S.; Dietz, M.W.; Masero, J.A.; Gill, R.E.; Dekinga, Anne; Battley, Phil F.; Sanchez-Guzman, J. M.; Piersma, Theunis

    2012-01-01

    Birds of marine environments have specialized glands to excrete salt, the saltglands. Located on the skull between the eyes, the size of these organs is expected to reflect their demand, which will vary with water turnover rates as a function of environmental (heat load, salinity of prey and drinking water) and organismal (energy demand, physiological state) factors. On the basis of inter- and intraspecific comparisons of saltgland mass (m sg) in 29 species of shorebird (suborder Charadrii) from saline, fresh and mixed water habitats, we assessed the relative roles of organism and environment in determining measured m sg species. The allometric exponent, scaling dry m sg to shorebird total body mass (m b), was significantly higher for coastal marine species (0??88, N=19) than for nonmarine species (0??43, N=14). Within the marine species, those ingesting bivalves intact had significantly higher m sg than species eating soft-bodied invertebrates, indicating that seawater contained within the shells added to the salt load. In red knots (Calidris canutus), dry m sg varied with monthly averaged ambient temperature in a U-shaped way, with the lowest mass at 12??5??C. This probably reflects increased energy demand for thermoregulation at low temperatures and elevated respiratory water loss at high temperatures. In fuelling bar-tailed godwits (Limosa lapponica), dry m sg was positively correlated with intestine mass, an indicator of relative food intake rates. These findings suggest once more that saltgland masses vary within species (and presumably individuals) in relation to salt load, that is a function of energy turnover (thermoregulation and fuelling) and evaporative water needs. Our results support the notion that m sg is strongly influenced by habitat salinity, and also by factors influencing salt load and demand for osmotically free water including ambient temperature, prey type and energy intake rates. Saltglands are evidently highly flexible organs. The small

  13. [The environmental conditions of the Kavkazskie Mineralnye Vody (Caucasian Mineral Waters) health resort region, methods for their monitoring and improvement].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evseeva, M M; Rud', N Iu; Pershin, I M

    2012-01-01

    This paper describes the unique environmental conditions of the Kavkazskie Mineralnye Vody (Caucasian Mineral Waters) health resort region with special reference to its paramount importance for the national interests of Russia. It is emphasized, however, that the environmental conditions in the region under consideration are far from being satisfactory. In connection with this, the authors point out to the necessity of expanding areas of protective forest stands and prohibition of the implementation of new building projects in the frontal mountain sanitary zones; they draw special attention to the potential danger of degradation of mineral water springs under the influence of changes in the distribution of vertical hydraulic gradients in the upper part of the lithosphere leading to the deterioration of their composition and the contamination of ground and surface waters with municipal and domestic effluents. Special attention is given to the harm and impermissibility of illegal extraction of mineral waters from producing wells. An original method for water quality control and estimation of the optimal production rate is proposed. The authors hypothesize the possible causes behind the discontinuation of mud formation at the Tambukan deposits and substantiate the necessity of using the resource-saving technologies for processing raw materials and urgent measures to eliminate the factors responsible for desalination and pollution of this mineral mud lake. It is concluded that strict state control should be exercised in the region by means of the introduction of the multilevel automated information system for round-the-clock environmental monitoring. The authors believe that only joint efforts of scientists, legislative and executive authorities can preserve Kavkazskie Mineralnye Vody health resort region for the future generations.

  14. Assessing the Environmental Conditions of Higher Education: In a Theoretical Approach Using Porter’s Five Forces Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oya TAMTEKİN AYDIN

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Increased demand for higher education and the change and competition it has brought have been a subject for many studies. In Porter’s five forces model, forces termed as the threat of new entrants, threat of substitute products, bargaining power of suppliers, bargaining power of customers, and established rivals between the companies are used to understand the threats and opportunities posed by the industry’s environmental circumstances. The five forces model has been extensively used as an analytical tool to determine the intensity of rivalry and levels of profitability. Thus, managers can develop strategies and discover ways to defend their companies against competitive forces. Although there have been numerous studies conducted with this model for various sectors, the studies implementing this theory to higher education are very scarce due to uncertainty about whether higher education could be regarded as an industry together with its profitability and rivalry components. Specifically, in Turkey, with the idea of considering higher education to be an industry being disputable compared with western countries and even regarded as unmannerly and disloyal to academia explains the lack of studies on this subject. In this study, within the scope of the related literature, the five forces model will be discussed in conjunction with higher education. Subsequently, the factors and evaluations that are shown within this scope will be associated with the external environmental conditions of Turkish higher education. Since there is a lack of well-written sources and sufficient data, the association with Turkish higher education will not be deeply detailed. To perceive the threats and opportunities to higher education from external environmental conditions, an overall approach will be achieved. The theoretical substructure introduced by this study will bring a different viewpoint to politicians, university directors and academicians, along with being

  15. Time trends, environmental factors and genetic basis of semen traits collected in Holstein bulls under commercial conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karoui, Sofiene; Díaz, Clara; Serrano, Magdalena; Cue, Roger; Celorrio, Idoia; Carabaño, María J

    2011-03-01

    The fact that results of artificial insemination (AI) are declining in highly selected dairy cattle populations has added a renewed interest to the evaluation of male fertility. Data from 42,348 ejaculates collected from 1990 to 2007 on 502 Holstein bulls were analysed in a Bayesian framework to provide estimates of the evolution of semen traits routinely collected in AI centres throughout the last decades of intense selection for production traits and estimate genetic parameters. The traits under consideration were volume (VOL), concentration (CONC), number of spermatozoa per ejaculate (NESPZ), mass motility score (MM), individual motility (IM), and post-thawing motility (PTM). The environmental factors studied were year-season and week of collection, which account for changes in environmental and technical conditions along time, age at collection, ejaculate order, time from previous collection (TPC) and time between collection and freezing (TCF) (only for PTM). Bull's inbreeding coefficient (Fi), bull's permanent environmental and additive genetic effects were also considered. The use of reduced models was evaluated using the Bayes factor. For all the systematic effects tested, strong or very strong evidence in favour of including the effect in the model was obtained, except for Fi for motility traits and TCF for PTM. No systematic time trends for environment or bull effects were observed, except for PTM, which showed an increasing environmental trend, associated with improvements in freezing-thawing protocols. Heritability estimates were moderate (0.16-0.22), except for IM, which presented a low value (0.07). Genetic correlations among motilities and between motilities and CONC were large and positive [0.38-0.87], VOL showed a negative correlation with CONC (-0.13) but with ample HPD 95%. The magnitude of heritabilities would allow an efficient selection if required and grants the use of these traits as indicators of the sperm viability component of bulls

  16. Adsorption of diclofenac onto organoclays: Effects of surfactant and environmental (pH and temperature) conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Oliveira, Tiago; Guégan, Régis; Thiebault, Thomas; Milbeau, Claude Le; Muller, Fabrice; Teixeira, Vinicius; Giovanela, Marcelo; Boussafir, Mohammed

    2017-02-05

    Among pharmaceutical products (PPs) recalcitrant to water treatments, diclofenac shows a high toxicity and remains at high concentration in natural aquatic environments. The aim of this study concerns the understanding of the adsorption mechanism of this anionic PP onto two organoclays prepared with two long-alkyl chains cationic surfactants showing different chemical nature for various experimental pH and temperature conditions. The experimental data obtained by a set of complementary techniques (X-ray diffraction, elemental analyses, gas chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry, and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy) and the use of Langmuir, Freundlich and Dubinin-Radushkevish equation models, reveal that organoclays show a good affinity to diclofenac which is enhanced as the temperature is under 35°C and for pH above 4.5 (i.e. >pKa of diclofenac) while the chemical nature of surfactant appears to play a minor role. The thermodynamic parameters derived from the fitting procedure point out the strong electrostatic interaction with organic cations adsorbed within the interlayer space in the organoclays for the adsorption of diclofenac. This study stress out the application of organoclays for the adsorption of a recalcitrant PPs in numerous aquatic compartments that can be used as a complement with activated carbon for waste water treatment. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Migratory management and environmental conditions affect lifespan and oxidative stress in honey bees

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simone-Finstrom, Michael; Li-Byarlay, Hongmei; Huang, Ming H.; Strand, Micheline K.; Rueppell, Olav; Tarpy, David R.

    2016-01-01

    Most pollination in large-scale agriculture is dependent on managed colonies of a single species, the honey bee Apis mellifera. More than 1 million hives are transported to California each year just to pollinate the almonds, and bees are trucked across the country for various cropping systems. Concerns have been raised about whether such “migratory management” causes bees undue stress; however to date there have been no longer-term studies rigorously addressing whether migratory management is detrimental to bee health. To address this issue, we conducted field experiments comparing bees from commercial and experimental migratory beekeeping operations to those from stationary colonies to quantify effects on lifespan, colony health and productivity, and levels of oxidative damage for individual bees. We detected a significant decrease in lifespan of migratory adult bees relative to stationary bees. We also found that migration affected oxidative stress levels in honey bees, but that food scarcity had an even larger impact; some detrimental effects of migration may be alleviated by a greater abundance of forage. In addition, rearing conditions affect levels of oxidative damage incurred as adults. This is the first comprehensive study on impacts of migratory management on the health and oxidative stress of honey bees. PMID:27554200

  18. Effectiveness of low concentration electrolyzed water to inactivate foodborne pathogens under different environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rahman, S M E; Ding, Tian; Oh, Deog-Hwan

    2010-05-15

    Strong acid electrolyzed water (SAEW) has a very limited application due to its low pH value (4.0, 5.0, 6.0 and 9.0) and temperatures (4, 15, 23, 35 and 50 degrees C) were determined. Reductions of bacterial populations of 1.7 to 6.6 log(10) CFU/mL in various treated conditions in cell suspensions were observed after treatment with LcEW and SAEW, compared to the untreated control. Dip washing (1 min at 35 degrees C) of lettuce leaves in both electrolyzed water resulted in 2.5 to 4.0 log(10) CFU/g compared to the unwashed control. Strong inactivation effects were observed in LcEW, and no significant difference (p>0.05) was observed between LcEW and SAEW. The effective form of chlorine compounds in LcEW was almost exclusively hypochlorous acid (HOCl), which has strong antimicrobial activity and leaves no residuals due to the low concentration of residual chlorine. Thus, LcEW could be widely applied as a new sanitizer in the food industry. 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Effects of environmental conditions on growth and survival of Salmonella in pasteurized whole egg

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jakociune, Dziuginta; Bisgaard, Magne; Hervé, Gaëlle

    2014-01-01

    This study investigated the influence of three parameters (time, temperature and NaCl concentration) on survival and four parameters (temperature, NaCl and lysozyme concentrations and pH) on growth of Salmonella enterica serovar Enteritidis (S. Enteritidis) in pasteurized whole egg (PWE). Doehlert...... times between 30 and 210s and a model for prediction of growth rate of S. Enteritidis in PWE in the temperature range of 1-25°C, NaCl concentration of 0-12%, pH between 5 and 9, and lysozyme concentrations of 107-1007 U/mg proteins were developed. The maximum reduction condition was 58°C, 0% of Na......Cl at a fixed heating time of 120s, while maximum growth rate was estimated at 25°C and 0% of NaCl. pH and lysozyme concentration were shown not to influence growth performance significantly in the range of values studied. Results inform industry of the optimal pasteurization and storage parameters for liquid...

  20. Rainfall thresholds for the activation of shallow landslides in the Italian Alps: the role of environmental conditioning factors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palladino, M. R.; Viero, A.; Turconi, L.; Brunetti, M. T.; Peruccacci, S.; Melillo, M.; Luino, F.; Deganutti, A. M.; Guzzetti, F.

    2018-02-01

    The aim of the present work is to investigate the role exerted by selected environmental factors in the activation of rainfall-triggered shallow landslides and to identify site-specific rainfall thresholds. The study concerns the Italian Alps. The region is exposed to widespread slope instability phenomena due to its geological, morphological and climatic features. Furthermore, the high level of anthropization that characterizes wide portions of the territory increases the associated risk. Hence, the analysis of potential predisposing factors influencing landslides triggering is worthwhile to improve the current prediction skills and to enhance the preparedness and the response to these natural hazards. During the last years, the Italian National Research Council's Research Institute for Hydro-geological Protection (CNR-IRPI) has contributed to the analysis of triggering conditions for rainfall-induced landslides in the framework of a national project. The project, funded by the National Department for Civil Protection (DPC), focuses on the identification of the empirical rainfall thresholds for the activation of shallow landslides in Italy. The first outcomes of the project reveal a certain variability of the pluviometric conditions responsible for the mass movements activation, when different environmental settings are compared. This variability is probably related to the action of local environmental factors, such as lithology, climatic regime or soil characteristics. Based on this hypothesis, the present study aims to identify separated domains within the Italian Alps, where different triggering conditions exist and different countermeasures are needed for risk prevention. For this purpose, we collected information concerning 511 landslides activated in the period 2000-2012 and reconstructed 453 rainfall events supposed to be responsible for the activations. Then, we selected a set of thematic maps to represent the hypothesised landslide conditioning factors

  1. Laboratory test methods to determine the degradation of plastics in marine environmental conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maurizio eTosin

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available In this technology report, three test methods were developed to characterize the degradation of plastic in marine environment. The aim was to outline a test methodology to measure the physical and biological degradation in different habitats where plastic waste can deposit when littered in the sea. Previously, research has focused mainly on the conditions encountered by plastic items when floating in the sea water (pelagic domain. However, this is just one of the possible habitats that plastic waste can be exposed to. Waves and tides tend to wash up plastic waste on the shoreline, which is also a relevant habitat to be studied. Therefore, the degradation of plastic items buried under sand kept wet with sea water has been followed by verifying the disintegration (visual disappearing as a simulation of the tidal zone. Most biodegradable plastics have higher densities than water and also as a consequence of fouling, they tend to sink and lay on the sea floor. Therefore, the fate of plastic items lying on the sediment has been followed by monitoring the oxygen consumption (biodegradation. Also the effect of a prolonged exposure to the sea water, to simulate the pelagic domain, has been tested by measuring the decay of mechanical properties. The test material (Mater-Bi was shown to degrade (total disintegration achieved in less than 9 months when buried in wet sand (simulation test of the tidal zone, to lose mechanical properties but still maintain integrity (tensile strength at break = -66% in 2 years when exposed to sea water in an aquarium (simulation of pelagic domain, and substantially biodegrade (69% in 236 days; biodegradation relative to paper: 88% when located at the sediment/sea water interface (simulation of benthic domain. This study is not conclusive as the methodological approach must be completed by also determining degradation occurring in the supralittoral zone, on the deep sea floor, and in the anoxic sediment.

  2. Growth kinetics and energetics of a deep-sea hyperthermophilic methanogen under varying environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ver Eecke, Helene C; Akerman, Nancy H; Huber, Julie A; Butterfield, David A; Holden, James F

    2013-10-01

    A hyperthermophilic deep-sea methanogen, Methanocaldococcus strain JH146, was isolated from 26°C hydrothermal fluid at Axial Volcano to model high temperature methanogenesis in the subseafloor. Emphasis was placed on defining growth kinetics, cell yields and growth energy demand (GE) across a range of conditions. The organism uses H2 and CO2 as its sole carbon and energy sources. At various temperatures, pHs, and chlorinities, its growth rates and cell yields co-varied while GE remained uniform at 1.69 × 10(-11) J cell(-1)s(-1) ± 0.68 × 10(-11) J cell(-1)s(-1) (s.d., n = 23). An exception was at superoptimal growth temperatures where GE increased to 7.25 × 10(-11) J cell(-1)s(-1) presumably due to heat shock. GE also increased from 5.1 × 10(-12) J cell(-1)s(-1) to 7.61 × 10(-11) J cell(-1)s(-1) as NH4 (+) concentrations decreased from 9.4 mM to 0.14 mM. JH146 did not fix N2 or assimilate NO3 (-), lacked the N2-fixing (cluster II) nifH gene, and became nitrogen limited below 0.14 mM NH4Cl. Nitrogen availability may impact growth in situ since ammonia concentrations at Axial Volcano are < 18 μM. Our approach contributes to refining bioenergetic and carbon flux models for methanogens and other organisms in hydrothermal vents and other environments. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd and Society for Applied Microbiology.

  3. Impact of Environmental Conditions on the Form and Function of Candida albicans Biofilms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daniels, Karla J.; Park, Yang-Nim; Srikantha, Thyagarajan; Pujol, Claude

    2013-01-01

    Candida albicans, like other pathogens, can form complex biofilms on a variety of substrates. However, as the number of studies of gene regulation, architecture, and pathogenic traits of C. albicans biofilms has increased, so have differences in results. This suggests that depending upon the conditions employed, biofilms may vary widely, thus hampering attempts at a uniform description. Gene expression studies suggest that this may be the case. To explore this hypothesis further, we compared the architectures and traits of biofilms formed in RPMI 1640 and Spider media at 37°C in air. Biofilms formed by a/α cells in the two media differed to various degrees in cellular architecture, matrix deposition, penetrability by leukocytes, fluconazole susceptibility, and the facilitation of mating. Similar comparisons of a/a cells in the two media, however, were made difficult given that in air, although a/a cells form traditional biofilms in RPMI medium, they form polylayers composed primarily of yeast cells in Spider medium. These polylayers lack an upper hyphal/matrix region, are readily penetrated by leukocytes, are highly fluconazole susceptible, and do not facilitate mating. If, however, air is replaced with 20% CO2, a/a cells make a biofilm in Spider medium similar architecturally to that of a/α cells, which facilitates mating. A second, more cursory comparison is made between the disparate cellular architectures of a/a biofilms formed in air in RPMI and Lee's media. The results demonstrate that C. albicans forms very different types of biofilms depending upon the composition of the medium, level of CO2 in the atmosphere, and configuration of the MTL locus. PMID:23954841

  4. Phytoplankton communities of polar regions--Diversity depending on environmental conditions and chemical anthropopressure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kosek, Klaudia; Polkowska, Żaneta; Żyszka, Beata; Lipok, Jacek

    2016-04-15

    The polar regions (Arctic and Antarctic) constitute up to 14% of the biosphere and offer some of the coldest and most arid Earth's environments. Nevertheless several oxygenic phototrophs including some higher plants, mosses, lichens, various algal groups and cyanobacteria, survive that harsh climate and create the base of the trophic relationships in fragile ecosystems of polar environments. Ecosystems in polar regions are characterized by low primary productivity and slow growth rates, therefore they are more vulnerable to disturbance, than those in temperate regions. From this reason, chemical contaminants influencing the growth of photoautotrophic producers might induce serious disorders in the integrity of polar ecosystems. However, for a long time these areas were believed to be free of chemical contamination, and relatively protected from widespread anthropogenic pressure, due their remoteness and extreme climate conditions. Nowadays, there is a growing amount of data that prove that xenobiotics are transported thousands of kilometers by the air and ocean currents and then they are deposed in colder regions and accumulate in many environments, including the habitats of marine and freshwater cyanobacteria. Cyanobacteria (blue green algae), as a natural part of phytoplankton assemblages, are globally distributed, but in high polar ecosystems they represent the dominant primary producers. These microorganisms are continuously exposed to various concentration levels of the compounds that are present in their habitats and act as nourishment or the factors influencing the growth and development of cyanobacteria in other way. The most common group of contaminants in Arctic and Antarctic are persistent organic pollutants (POPs), characterized by durability and resistance to degradation. It is important to determine their concentrations in all phytoplankton species cells and in their environment to get to know the possibility of contaminants to transfer to higher

  5. Effect of calibration and environmental condition on the performance of direct-reading organic vapor monitors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coffey, Christopher; LeBouf, Ryan; Lee, Larry; Slaven, James; Martin, Stephen

    2012-01-01

    The performance of three MIRAN SapphIRe Portable Infrared Ambient Air Analyzers and three Century Portable Toxic Vapor Analyzers equipped with photoionization (PID) and flame ionization (FID) detectors was compared with charcoal tube sampling. Relationships were investigated using two different calibration methods at four cyclohexane concentrations, three temperatures, and four relative humidities. For the first method, the TVA monitors were calibrated with a single concentration of methane for the FID, and isobutylene for the PID. The SapphIRe monitors were zeroed and the monitor's manufacturer-supplied library was used. For the second method, a five-point cyclohexane calibration curve was created for each monitor. Comparison of the monitor results of each calibration method (pooled data) indicated a significant difference between methods (t-test, p PID and FID monitor groups performed better using the first calibration method. The PID monitor group's performance was affected only at the 90% relative humidity (RH) condition. Using the first method, the monitor readings were compared with the charcoal tube average using mixed linear model analyses of variance (ANOVAs) and regression. The ANOVA results showed there was a statistically significant difference among readings from all monitor types (p PID monitor group had a similar correlation when 90% RH was excluded (r² = 0.94) but had a weaker correlation when it was included (r² = 0.58). The operator should take care when using these monitors at high concentrations and the PID monitors at high humidities, consider the variability between units of the same monitor, and conduct performance verification of the monitor being used.

  6. Casein Films: The Effects of Formulation, Environmental Conditions and the Addition of Citric Pectin on the Structure and Mechanical Properties

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laetitia M. Bonnaillie

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Thin casein films for food packaging applications reportedly possess good strength and low oxygen permeability, but low elasticity and high sensitivity to moisture. Modifying the films to target specific behaviors depending on environmental conditions can enable a variety of commercial applications for casein-based films. The mechanical properties of solvent-cast (15% solids calcium-caseinate/glycerol films (CaCas:Gly ratio of 3:1 were characterized as a function of processing and environmental conditions, including film thickness, solution formulation and ambient humidity (from 22% to 70% relative humidity (RH at ~20 °C. At constant RH, the elongation at break (EAB had a strong positive dependence on the film thickness. When RH increased, the tensile strength (TS and modulus (E decreased approximately linearly, while EAB increased. From 0.05% to 1% (w/w of citric pectin (CP was then incorporated into CaCas/Gly films following seven different formulations (mixing sequences, to alter the protein network and to evaluate the effects of CP on the tensile properties of CaCas/Gly/CP films. At constant film thickness and ~60% RH, the addition of 0.1% or 1.0% CP to the films considerably increased or decreased EAB, TS and E in different directions and to different extents, depending on the formulation, while optical micrographs also showed vastly differing network configurations, suggesting complex formulation- and stoichiometry-dependent casein-pectin interactions within the dried films. Depending on the desired film properties and utilization conditions, pectin may be a useful addition to casein film formulations for food packaging applications.

  7. Analysis of the Effect of Environmental Conditions in Conducting Amphibious Assaults Using a Ship Simulator/Vessel-Response Model Proof-of-Concept Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-05-01

    ER D C/ CH L TR -1 7- 4 Analysis of the Effect of Environmental Conditions in Conducting Amphibious Assaults Using a Ship Simulator...unlimited. The U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC) solves the nation’s toughest engineering and environmental challenges...ERDC develops innovative solutions in civil and military engineering, geospatial sciences, water resources, and environmental sciences for the Army

  8. Are theoretical perspectives useful to explain nurses' tolerance of suboptimal care?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Price, Lesley; Duffy, Kathleen; McCallum, Jacqueline; Ness, Valerie

    2015-10-01

    This paper explores two theoretical perspectives that may help nurse managers understand why staff tolerate suboptimal standards of care. Standards of care have been questioned in relation to adverse events and errors for some years in health care across the western world. More recently, the focus has shifted to inadequate nursing standards with regard to care and compassion, and a culture of tolerance by staff to these inadequate standards. The theories of conformity and cognitive dissonance are analysed to investigate their potential for helping nurse managers to understand why staff tolerate suboptimal standards of care. The literature suggests that nurses appear to adopt behaviours consistent with the theory of conformity and that they may accept suboptimal care to reduce their cognitive dissonance. Nurses may conform to be accepted by the team. This may be confounded by nurses rationalising their care to reduce the cognitive dissonance they feel. The investigation into the Mid Staffordshire National Health Service called for a change in culture towards transparency, candidness and openness. Providing insights as to why some nursing staff tolerate suboptimal care may provide a springboard to allow nurse managers to consider the complexities surrounding this required transformation. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  9. Influence of sub-optimal temperature on tomato growth and yield : a review

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ploeg, van der A.; Heuvelink, E.

    2005-01-01

    The effects of temperature on growth, development and yield of tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum) are reviewed with special emphasis on cultivar differences. The focus is on sub-optimal temperatures, above the level where chilling injury occurs. Temperature has a large effect on all aspects of

  10. Suboptimal decision making by children with ADHD in the face of risk

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sørensen, Lin; Sonuga-Barke, Edmund; Eichele, Heike

    2017-01-01

    Objective: Suboptimal decision making in the face of risk (DMR) in children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) may be mediated by deficits in a number of different neuropsychological processes. We investigated DMR in children with ADHD using the Cambridge Gambling Task (CGT...

  11. High Current CD4+ T Cell Count Predicts Suboptimal Adherence to Antiretroviral Therapy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pasternak, Alexander O.; de Bruin, Marijn; Bakker, Margreet; Berkhout, Ben; Prins, Jan M.

    2015-01-01

    High levels of adherence to antiretroviral therapy (ART) are necessary for achieving and maintaining optimal virological suppression, as suboptimal adherence leads to therapy failure and disease progression. It is well known that adherence to ART predicts therapy response, but it is unclear whether

  12. Indicators of suboptimal performance embedded in the Wechsler Memory Scale : Fourth Edition (WMS-IV)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bouman, Z.; Hendriks, M.P.H.; Schmand, B.A.; Kessels, R.P.C.; Aldenkamp, A.P.

    2016-01-01

    INTRODUCTION: Recognition and visual working memory tasks from the Wechsler Memory Scale-Fourth Edition (WMS-IV) have previously been documented as useful indicators for suboptimal performance. The present study examined the clinical utility of the Dutch version of the WMS-IV (WMS-IV-NL) for the

  13. High current CD4+ T cell count predicts suboptimal adherence to antiretroviral therapy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pasternak, A.O.; de Bruin, M.; Bakker, M.; Berkhout, B.; Prins, J.M.

    2015-01-01

    High levels of adherence to antiretroviral therapy (ART) are necessary for achieving and maintaining optimal virological suppression, as suboptimal adherence leads to therapy failure and disease progression. It is well known that adherence to ART predicts therapy response, but it is unclear whether

  14. State Space Formulas for a Solution of the Suboptimal Nehari Problem on the Unit Disc

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Curtain, Ruth F.; Opmeer, Mark R.

    We give state space formulas for a ("central") solution of the suboptimal Nehari problem for functions defined on the unit disc and taking values in the space of bounded operators in separable Hilbert spaces. Instead of assuming exponential stability, we assume a weaker stability concept (the

  15. Efficiency of different sanitation methods on Listeria monocytogenes biofilms formed under various environmental conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belessi, Charalambia-Eirini A; Gounadaki, Antonia S; Psomas, Antonios N; Skandamis, Panagiotis N

    2011-03-01

    The resistance of Listeria monocytogenes biofilms formed under food processing conditions, against various sanitizing agents and disinfection procedures was evaluated in the present study. The first sanitation procedure included biofilm formation on stainless steel coupons (SS) placed in tryptic soy broth supplemented with 0.6% yeast extract (TSBYE) of various concentrations of NaCl (0.5, 7.5 and 9.5%) at different temperatures (5 and 20 °C). The biofilms formed were exposed to warm (60 °C) water for 20 min, or to peroxyacetic acid (2% PAA) for 1, 2, 3 and 6 min. Treatment with warm water caused no significant (P ≥ 0.05) reductions in the attached populations. Conversely, surviving bacteria on SS coupons decreased as the exposure time to 2% PAA increased and could not be detected by culture after 6 min of exposure. Biofilms formed at 20°C were more resistant to PAA than biofilms formed at 5 °C. Salt concentration in the growth medium had no marked impact on the resistance to PAA. The second sanitation procedure included biofilm formation of nonadapted (NA) and acid-adapted (AA) cells in TSBYE of pH 5.0 and 7.0 (i.e., NA-5.0, NA-7.0 and AA-5.0, AA-7.0) at 4 °C. Coupons bearing attached cells of L. monocytogenes were periodically exposed to chlorine (0.465% Cl(-)), quaternary ammonium compound (1% QAC) and 2% PAA. The resistance of attached cells to QAC, PAA and Cl(-) followed the order: AA-5.0>NA-7.0 ≥ AA-7.0>NA-5.0. The most effective sanitizer was QAC followed by PAA and Cl(-). The results can lead to the development of efficient sanitation strategies in order to eliminate L. monocytogenes from the processing environment. Furthermore, such results may explain the presence of L. monocytogenes after sanitation as a result of cell attachment history. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Tracking Biological and Ecosystem Responses to Changing Environmental Conditions in the Pacific Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grebmeier, J. M.; Cooper, L. W.; Frey, K. E.; Moore, S. E.

    2014-12-01

    Changing seasonal sea ice conditions and seawater temperatures strongly influence biological processes and marine ecosystems at high latitudes. In the Pacific Arctic, persistent regions termed "hotspots", are localized areas with high benthic macroinfaunal biomass that have been documented over four decades (see Figure). These regions are now being more formally tracked to relate physical forcing and ecosystem response as an Arctic Distributed Biological Observatory (DBO) supported by the US National Ocean Policy Implementation Plan and international partners. These hotspots are important foraging areas for upper trophic level benthic feeders, such as marine mammals and seabirds. South of St. Lawrence Island (SLI) in the northern Bering Sea, benthic feeding spectacled eiders, bearded seals and walruses are important winter consumers of infauna, such as bivalves and polychaetes. Gray whales have historically been a major summer consumer of benthic amphipods in the Chirikov Basin to the north of SLI, although summertime sightings of gray whales declined in the Chirikov from the 1980s up until at least 2002. The SE Chukchi Sea hotspot, as are the other hotspots, is maintained by export of high chlorophyll a that is produced locally as well as advected by water masses transiting northward through the system. Both walrus and gray whales are known to forage in this hotspot seasonally on high biomass levels of benthic prey. Notably the center of the highest benthic biomass regions has shifted northward in three of the DBO hotspots in recent years. This has coincided with changing sediment grain size, an indicator of current speed, and is also likely a response to changes in primary production in the region. Studies of these broad biological responses to changing physical drivers have been facilitated through development of the DBO cooperative effort by both US and international scientists. The DBO includes a series of coordinated, multi-trophic level observations that