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Michael Weekes

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Nick K. Jones1,2*, Lucy Rivett1,2*, Chris Workman3, Mark Ferris3, Ashley Shaw1, Cambridge COVID-19 Collaboration1,4, Paul J. Lehner1,4, Rob Howes5, Giles Wright3, Nicholas J. Matheson1,4,6¶, Michael P. Weekes1,7¶1 Cambridge University NHS Hospitals Foundation Trust, Cambridge, UK2 Clinical Microbiology & Public Health Laboratory, Public Health England, Cambridge, UK3 Occupational Health and Wellbeing, Cambridge Biomedical Campus, Cambridge, UK4 Cambridge Institute of Therapeutic Immunology & Infectious Disease, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK5 Cambridge COVID-19 Testing Centre and AstraZeneca, Anne Mclaren Building, Cambridge, UK6 NHS Blood and Transplant, Cambridge, UK7 Cambridge Institute for Medical Research, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK*Joint first authorship¶Joint last authorshipCorrespondence: [email protected] UK has initiated mass COVID-19 immunisation, with healthcare workers (HCWs) given early priority because of the potential for workplace exposure and risk of onward transmission to patients. The UK’s Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation has recommended maximising the number of people vaccinated with first doses at the expense of early booster vaccinations, based on single dose efficacy against symptomatic COVID-19 disease.1-3At the time of writing, three COVID-19 vaccines have been granted emergency use authorisation in the UK, including the BNT162b2 mRNA COVID-19 vaccine (Pfizer-BioNTech). A vital outstanding question is whether this vaccine prevents or promotes asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection, rather than symptomatic COVID-19 disease, because sub-clinical infection following vaccination could continue to drive transmission. This is especially important because many UK HCWs have received this vaccine, and nosocomial COVID-19 infection has been a persistent problem.Through the implementation of a 24 h-turnaround PCR-based comprehensive HCW screening programme at Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (CUHNFT), we previously demonstrated the frequent presence of pauci- and asymptomatic infection amongst HCWs during the UK’s first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.4 Here, we evaluate the effect of first-dose BNT162b2 vaccination on test positivity rates and cycle threshold (Ct) values in the asymptomatic arm of our programme, which now offers weekly screening to all staff.Vaccination of HCWs at CUHNFT began on 8th December 2020, with mass vaccination from 8th January 2021. Here, we analyse data from the two weeks spanning 18thto 31st January 2021, during which: (a) the prevalence of COVID-19 amongst HCWs remained approximately constant; and (b) we screened comparable numbers of vaccinated and unvaccinated HCWs. Over this period, 4,408 (week 1) and 4,411 (week 2) PCR tests were performed from individuals reporting well to work. We stratified HCWs <12 days or > 12 days post-vaccination because this was the point at which protection against symptomatic infection began to appear in phase III clinical trial.226/3,252 (0·80%) tests from unvaccinated HCWs were positive (Ct<36), compared to 13/3,535 (0·37%) from HCWs <12 days post-vaccination and 4/1,989 (0·20%) tests from HCWs ≥12 days post-vaccination (p=0·023 and p=0·004, respectively; Fisher’s exact test, Figure). This suggests a four-fold decrease in the risk of asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection amongst HCWs ≥12 days post-vaccination, compared to unvaccinated HCWs, with an intermediate effect amongst HCWs <12 days post-vaccination.A marked reduction in infections was also seen when analyses were repeated with: (a) inclusion of HCWs testing positive through both the symptomatic and asymptomatic arms of the programme (56/3,282 (1·71%) unvaccinated vs 8/1,997 (0·40%) ≥12 days post-vaccination, 4·3-fold reduction, p=0·00001); (b) inclusion of PCR tests which were positive at the limit of detection (Ct>36, 42/3,268 (1·29%) vs 15/2,000 (0·75%), 1·7-fold reduction, p=0·075); and (c) extension of the period of analysis to include six weeks from December 28th to February 7th 2021 (113/14,083 (0·80%) vs 5/4,872 (0·10%), 7·8-fold reduction, p=1x10-9). In addition, the median Ct value of positive tests showed a non-significant trend towards increase between unvaccinated HCWs and HCWs > 12 days post-vaccination (23·3 to 30·3, Figure), suggesting that samples from vaccinated individuals had lower viral loads.We therefore provide real-world evidence for a high level of protection against asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection after a single dose of BNT162b2 vaccine, at a time of predominant transmission of the UK COVID-19 variant of concern 202012/01 (lineage B.1.1.7), and amongst a population with a relatively low frequency of prior infection (7.2% antibody positive).5This work was funded by a Wellcome Senior Clinical Research Fellowship to MPW (108070/Z/15/Z), a Wellcome Principal Research Fellowship to PJL (210688/Z/18/Z), and an MRC Clinician Scientist Fellowship (MR/P008801/1) and NHSBT workpackage (WPA15-02) to NJM. Funding was also received from Addenbrooke’s Charitable Trust and the Cambridge Biomedical Research Centre. We also acknowledge contributions from all staff at CUHNFT Occupational Health and Wellbeing and the Cambridge COVID-19 Testing Centre.

Guangming Wang

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Tam Hunt

and 1 more

Tam Hunt [1], Jonathan SchoolerUniversity of California Santa Barbara Synchronization, harmonization, vibrations, or simply resonance in its most general sense seems to have an integral relationship with consciousness itself. One of the possible “neural correlates of consciousness” in mammalian brains is a combination of gamma, beta and theta synchrony. More broadly, we see similar kinds of resonance patterns in living and non-living structures of many types. What clues can resonance provide about the nature of consciousness more generally? This paper provides an overview of resonating structures in the fields of neuroscience, biology and physics and attempts to coalesce these data into a solution to what we see as the “easy part” of the Hard Problem, which is generally known as the “combination problem” or the “binding problem.” The combination problem asks: how do micro-conscious entities combine into a higher-level macro-consciousness? The proposed solution in the context of mammalian consciousness suggests that a shared resonance is what allows different parts of the brain to achieve a phase transition in the speed and bandwidth of information flows between the constituent parts. This phase transition allows for richer varieties of consciousness to arise, with the character and content of that consciousness in each moment determined by the particular set of constituent neurons. We also offer more general insights into the ontology of consciousness and suggest that consciousness manifests as a relatively smooth continuum of increasing richness in all physical processes, distinguishing our view from emergentist materialism. We refer to this approach as a (general) resonance theory of consciousness and offer some responses to Chalmers’ questions about the different kinds of “combination problem.”  At the heart of the universe is a steady, insistent beat: the sound of cycles in sync…. [T]hese feats of synchrony occur spontaneously, almost as if nature has an eerie yearning for order. Steven Strogatz, Sync: How Order Emerges From Chaos in the Universe, Nature and Daily Life (2003) If you want to find the secrets of the universe, think in terms of energy, frequency and vibration.Nikola Tesla (1942) I.               Introduction Is there an “easy part” and a “hard part” to the Hard Problem of consciousness? In this paper, we suggest that there is. The harder part is arriving at a philosophical position with respect to the relationship of matter and mind. This paper is about the “easy part” of the Hard Problem but we address the “hard part” briefly in this introduction.  We have both arrived, after much deliberation, at the position of panpsychism or panexperientialism (all matter has at least some associated mind/experience and vice versa). This is the view that all things and processes have both mental and physical aspects. Matter and mind are two sides of the same coin.  Panpsychism is one of many possible approaches that addresses the “hard part” of the Hard Problem. We adopt this position for all the reasons various authors have listed (Chalmers 1996, Griffin 1997, Hunt 2011, Goff 2017). This first step is particularly powerful if we adopt the Whiteheadian version of panpsychism (Whitehead 1929).  Reaching a position on this fundamental question of how mind relates to matter must be based on a “weight of plausibility” approach, rather than on definitive evidence, because establishing definitive evidence with respect to the presence of mind/experience is difficult. We must generally rely on examining various “behavioral correlates of consciousness” in judging whether entities other than ourselves are conscious – even with respect to other humans—since the only consciousness we can know with certainty is our own. Positing that matter and mind are two sides of the same coin explains the problem of consciousness insofar as it avoids the problems of emergence because under this approach consciousness doesn’t emerge. Consciousness is, rather, always present, at some level, even in the simplest of processes, but it “complexifies” as matter complexifies, and vice versa. Consciousness starts very simple and becomes more complex and rich under the right conditions, which in our proposed framework rely on resonance mechanisms. Matter and mind are two sides of the coin. Neither is primary; they are coequal.  We acknowledge the challenges of adopting this perspective, but encourage readers to consider the many compelling reasons to consider it that are reviewed elsewhere (Chalmers 1996, Griffin 1998, Hunt 2011, Goff 2017, Schooler, Schooler, & Hunt, 2011; Schooler, 2015).  Taking a position on the overarching ontology is the first step in addressing the Hard Problem. But this leads to the related questions: at what level of organization does consciousness reside in any particular process? Is a rock conscious? A chair? An ant? A bacterium? Or are only the smaller constituents, such as atoms or molecules, of these entities conscious? And if there is some degree of consciousness even in atoms and molecules, as panpsychism suggests (albeit of a very rudimentary nature, an important point to remember), how do these micro-conscious entities combine into the higher-level and obvious consciousness we witness in entities like humans and other mammals?  This set of questions is known as the “combination problem,” another now-classic problem in the philosophy of mind, and is what we describe here as the “easy part” of the Hard Problem. Our characterization of this part of the problem as “easy”[2] is, of course, more than a little tongue in cheek. The authors have discussed frequently with each other what part of the Hard Problem should be labeled the easier part and which the harder part. Regardless of the labels we choose, however, this paper focuses on our suggested solution to the combination problem.  Various solutions to the combination problem have been proposed but none have gained widespread acceptance. This paper further elaborates a proposed solution to the combination problem that we first described in Hunt 2011 and Schooler, Hunt, and Schooler 2011. The proposed solution rests on the idea of resonance, a shared vibratory frequency, which can also be called synchrony or field coherence. We will generally use resonance and “sync,” short for synchrony, interchangeably in this paper. We describe the approach as a general resonance theory of consciousness or just “general resonance theory” (GRT). GRT is a field theory of consciousness wherein the various specific fields associated with matter and energy are the seat of conscious awareness.  A summary of our approach appears in Appendix 1.  All things in our universe are constantly in motion, in process. Even objects that appear to be stationary are in fact vibrating, oscillating, resonating, at specific frequencies. So all things are actually processes. Resonance is a specific type of motion, characterized by synchronized oscillation between two states.  An interesting phenomenon occurs when different vibrating processes come into proximity: they will often start vibrating together at the same frequency. They “sync up,” sometimes in ways that can seem mysterious, and allow for richer and faster information and energy flows (Figure 1 offers a schematic). Examining this phenomenon leads to potentially deep insights about the nature of consciousness in both the human/mammalian context but also at a deeper ontological level.

Susanne Schilling*^

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Jessica mead

and 6 more

The construct of wellbeing has been criticised as a neoliberal construction of western individualism that ignores wider systemic issues including increasing burden of chronic disease, widening inequality, concerns over environmental degradation and anthropogenic climate change. While these criticisms overlook recent developments, there remains a need for biopsychosocial models that extend theoretical grounding beyond individual wellbeing, incorporating overlapping contextual issues relating to community and environment. Our first GENIAL model \cite{Kemp_2017} provided a more expansive view of pathways to longevity in the context of individual health and wellbeing, emphasising bidirectional links to positive social ties and the impact of sociocultural factors. In this paper, we build on these ideas and propose GENIAL 2.0, focusing on intersecting individual-community-environmental contributions to health and wellbeing, and laying an evidence-based, theoretical framework on which future research and innovative therapeutic innovations could be based. We suggest that our transdisciplinary model of wellbeing - focusing on individual, community and environmental contributions to personal wellbeing - will help to move the research field forward. In reconceptualising wellbeing, GENIAL 2.0 bridges the gap between psychological science and population health health systems, and presents opportunities for enhancing the health and wellbeing of people living with chronic conditions. Implications for future generations including the very survival of our species are discussed.  

Mark Ferris

and 14 more

IntroductionConsistent with World Health Organization (WHO) advice [1], UK Infection Protection Control guidance recommends that healthcare workers (HCWs) caring for patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) should use fluid resistant surgical masks type IIR (FRSMs) as respiratory protective equipment (RPE), unless aerosol generating procedures (AGPs) are being undertaken or are likely, when a filtering face piece 3 (FFP3) respirator should be used [2]. In a recent update, an FFP3 respirator is recommended if “an unacceptable risk of transmission remains following rigorous application of the hierarchy of control” [3]. Conversely, guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that HCWs caring for patients with COVID-19 should use an N95 or higher level respirator [4]. WHO guidance suggests that a respirator, such as FFP3, may be used for HCWs in the absence of AGPs if availability or cost is not an issue [1].A recent systematic review undertaken for PHE concluded that: “patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection who are breathing, talking or coughing generate both respiratory droplets and aerosols, but FRSM (and where required, eye protection) are considered to provide adequate staff protection” [5]. Nevertheless, FFP3 respirators are more effective in preventing aerosol transmission than FRSMs, and observational data suggests that they may improve protection for HCWs [6]. It has therefore been suggested that respirators should be considered as a means of affording the best available protection [7], and some organisations have decided to provide FFP3 (or equivalent) respirators to HCWs caring for COVID-19 patients, despite a lack of mandate from local or national guidelines [8].Data from the HCW testing programme at Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (CUHNFT) during the first wave of the UK severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic indicated a higher incidence of infection amongst HCWs caring for patients with COVID-19, compared with those who did not [9]. Subsequent studies have confirmed this observation [10, 11]. This disparity persisted at CUHNFT in December 2020, despite control measures consistent with PHE guidance and audits indicating good compliance. The CUHNFT infection control committee therefore implemented a change of RPE for staff on “red” (COVID-19) wards from FRSMs to FFP3 respirators. In this study, we analyse the incidence of SARS-CoV-2 infection in HCWs before and after this transition.

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Robert Amaro

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Additively manufactured (AM) IN718, created by use of laser-powder bed fusion (L-PBF), is one of several candidate materials being pursued for introduction as components into flight hardware. In an attempt to certify an AM IN718 component for flight worthiness, a Qualified Metallurgical Plan, substantially similar to NASA’s MSFC-SPEC-3717[1](#fn-0002), was implemented to create materials and components exhibiting both inter-build and intra-build consistencies. As a function of this work, specimens were created and tested in monotonic loading, strain-controlled low cycle fatigue, and force-controlled low cycle fatigue. Data was created by use of specimens in both machined and as-built conditions and at temperatures up to 400°C. Additionally, test results from specimens having prismatic gage sections were compared to those having a sharp notch (Kt=3). The test data was subsequently used to create non-linear combined kinematic and isotropic constitutive models to aid in the prediction of material deformation response resulting from hypersonic flight loading conditions (generally thermo-mechanical fatigue and/or creep-fatigue). Furthermore, a physics-based life model originally created for single crystal nickel-based superalloys experiencing thermo-mechanical fatigue was calibrated for the additively manufactured IN718 material studied here. Validation and verification tests of specimens experiencing multiple variations of typical “low-speed” hypersonic flight loading conditions and boundary conditions indicate that the calibrated life model predicts the effects of surface finish (machined versus as-built), geometric discontinuities, varying temperatures, and varying loads well. The constitutive models were then combined with a finite element solid model in ABAQUS to aid in the life prediction of flight hardware created as part of this work.

Mingyan Wu

and 8 more

Climate change exacerbates the imbalance of water resources allocation in the basin, and vegetation has an important impact on the regulation of water resources. The analysis of regulation mechanism of climate and vegetation changes on blue-green water resources could enhance water resources management within watersheds. Therefore, this study assessed the spatial and temporal characteristics of blue-green water resources by employing the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) in the Jialing River Basin (JLRB), and explored the mechanisms of climate and vegetation changes on blue and green water resources in the basin thought correlation analysis and structural equation model. Draw conclusions as follows: (1) the whole basin showed a warming and humidifying trend from 1982 to 2020, under which the vegetation generally was getting green. (2) The basin had less blue-green water in the northwest and more in the southeast. There was a decreasing trend in both blue and green water from 1982 to 2000, and an increasing trend from 2000 to 2020. (3) The spatial distribution of blue-green water was uneven, and the annual average blue and green water was 369.03mm and 566.46mm, respectively. (4) In the context of basin warming and humidification, the change of blue-green water in the basin is mainly affected by precipitation. The regulation of blue and green water by vegetation greening could only weaken the impacts brought by climate change. The results of the study provide a solid scientific basis for water resource management in the basin.

Afework Tadele

and 2 more

Introduction: Every year, millions of induced abortions, stillbirths, and preterm births occur worldwide. Ethiopia has high rates of stillbirths and unsafe abortions contribute to maternal deaths. Preterm births are the leading cause of death among children under five. Despite interventions, adverse pregnancy outcomes remain prevalent, especially in low-income and middle-income countries. The life course perspective is vital for understanding the impact of social factors on pregnancy outcomes, including early life exposure to famine. This study aims to explore these relationships in in Kersa, Eastern Ethiopia to mitigate the burden of adverse pregnancy outcomes. Methods: An accelerated cohort design utilized to capture all reproductive age mothers in Kersa, Eastern Ethiopia. A total 7,286 pregnant women with 13,299 complete observations from Kersa Health and Demographic Surveillance System (HDSS) dataset were analyzed. The generalized linear mixed-effects model was conducted using STATA version 17.0, specifying the family as binomial and the link function as logit. Result: Adverse pregnancy outcomes varied significantly among three distinct birth cohorts, indicating the impact of early-life famine exposure throughout the maternal life course. Women who experienced the famine at birth (Adjusted Odds Ratio [AOR] = 1.50, 95%, C.I [1.27, 1.77]), who experienced the famine throughout childhood (AOR = 1.84, 95% C.I [1.40, 2.43]), women who had never attended formal education (AOR = 1.57, 95% C.I [1.30, 1.90]), those who gave birth before age of 18 (AOR = 1.44, 95% C.I [1.26, 1.66]), mid-upper arm circumference less than 21cm (AOR = 2.49, 95% C.I [2.01, 3.09]), those 21-23cm (AOR = 1.54, 95% C.I [1.32, 1.79]), compared to greater than 23cm. Conclusion: Adverse pregnancy outcomes varied significantly among three birth cohorts, indicating the impact of early-life famine exposure. Factors such as famine at birth or throughout childhood, lack of formal education, giving birth before age 18, and low mid-upper arm circumference were associated with higher odds of adverse outcomes. Addressing these factors is crucial for improving pregnancy outcomes.

Mauricio Hernandez

and 4 more

Genome-resolved metagenomics, based on shotgun sequencing, has become a powerful strategy for investigating animal-associated microbiomes, due its heightened capability for delivering detailed taxonomic, phylogenetic, and functional insights compared to amplicon sequencing-based approaches. While genome-resolved metagenomics holds promise across various non-lethal sample types, their effectiveness in yielding high-quality metagenome-assembled genomes (MAGs) remains largely unexplored. Our investigation of fecal and cloacal microbiota of the mesquite lizards (Sceloporus grammicus) using genome-resolved metagenomics revealed that fecal samples contributed 97% of the 127 reconstructed bacterial genomes, whereas only 3% were recovered from cloacal swabs, which were largely enriched with host DNA. Taxonomic, phylogenetic and functional alpha microbial diversity was greater in fecal samples than in cloacal swabs. We also observed significant differences in microbial community composition between sampling methods, and higher inter-individual variation in cloacal swabs. Bacteroides, Phocaeicola and Parabacteroides (all Bacteroidota) were more abundant in the feces, whereas Hafnia and Salmonella (both Pseudomonadota) increased in the cloaca. Functional analyses showed that metabolic capacities of the microbiota to degrade polysaccharides, sugars and nitrogen compounds were enriched in fecal samples, likely reflecting the role of the microbiota in nutrient metabolism. Overall, our results indicate that fecal samples outperform cloacal swabs in characterizing microbial assemblages within lizards using genome-resolved metagenomics.

Liangxiang Lu

and 6 more

Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD), which is marked by impaired kidney function, is recognized as a significant public health issue, and individuals with this condition are at a heightened risk of experiencing cognitive problems simultaneously. This research evaluated the functional importance of the β-catenin signaling pathway in cognitive function in mice with chronic renal disease caused by adenine. The study also aimed to determine the relevance of the influence of the β-catenin signaling system on cognitive function and its underlying processes. Firstly, a mouse model of CKD was created. Subsequently, the cognitive capacity of mice with CKD was assessed using a water maze. Following that, immunofluorescence labeling and protein blot analysis were used to quantify the levels of β-catenin and Dickkopf-related protein -1 (DKK1) expression in the brain and kidney of mice with CKD. This study aims to investigate the role of β-catenin in cognitive impairment in CKD mice. CKD mice exhibited neuronal injury and cognitive impairment, which correlated with a significant decrease in the number of nuclei in the frontal lobe. These nuclei had pale staining, blurred boundaries, a hazy appearance, and, in some cases, swelling or disintegration. Furthermore, it was proven that DKK1 exacerbates cognitive impairment in mice with CKD by blocking the β-catenin/Wnt signaling pathway. To summarize, the study revealed that the β-catenin signaling pathway impacts cognitive function in mice with CKD induced by adenine. Additionally, it was observed that increased levels of DKK1 resulted in neuronal damage in the brain tissue of mice with CKD.

Muhammad Jawad

and 1 more

The Cattaneo-Christov flux model is applied to conduct a theoretical investigation into the effect of the Biot number and magnetohydrodynamic field on the traditional Sakiadis and Blasius flows of heat transfer across a sheet. In recent years, research has focused on a variety of technical activities having thermal expansion and hydromagnetic fluxes in porous media including nuclear reactor cooling, fusion control, liquid metal filtration, compact heat exchangers, and casting. The boundary of the sheet contains a radiative heat source, a magnetic field in the uniform case, and connective conditions acting perpendicular to the sheet. The controlling nonlinear PDEs have been transformed to their ODEs form using the proper similarity transformations. A solution that considers the variable behaviours of concentrations, flow speed, temperature, and gradient of these parameters at the boundary owing to parametric variation is produced by harnessing HAM. Numerical results are produced to illustrate the impact of controlling physical factors on Sherwood number, temperature, skin factor, concentration, Nusselt number, and velocity. The most prime results of work are the decrease in boundary layer flow velocity in the Blasius and Sakiadis due to an improvement in the intensity of the magnetic field. Additionally, the temperature was directly impacted by the Biot number, thermophoresis parameter, and radiation parameter; although the reverse influence of thermal relaxation of the temperature profile was seen. An outstanding comparison of the current findings with those from earlier research demonstrates the convergence of the numerical approach for optimal meshing and verifies the veracity of the outcomes that were provided.

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Urbanization modifies ecosystem conditions and evolutionary processes. This includes air pollution, mostly as tropospheric ozone (O3), which contributes to the decline of urban and peri-urban forests. A notable case are fir(Abies religiosa) forests in the peripheral mountains southwest of Mexico City, which have been severely affected by O3 pollution since the 1970s. Interestingly, some young individuals exhibiting minimal O3—related damage have been observed within a zone of significant O3 exposure. Using this setting as a natural experiment, we compared asymptomatic and symptomatic individuals of similar age (≤15 years old; n = 10) using histological, metabolomic and transcriptomic approaches. Plants were sampled during days of high (170 ppb) and moderate (87 ppb) O3 concentration. Given that there have been reforestation efforts in the region, with plants from different source populations, we first confirmed that all analysed individuals clustered within the local genetic group when compared to a species-wide panel (Admixture analysis with ~1.5K SNPs). We observed thicker epidermis and more collapsed cells in the palisade parenchyma of needles from symptomatic individuals than from their asymptomatic counterparts, with differences increasing with needle age. Furthermore, symptomatic individuals exhibited lower concentrations of various terpenes (ß-pinene, ß-caryophylene oxide, α-caryophylene and ß-α-cubebene) than asymptomatic trees, as evidenced through GC-MS. Finally, transcriptomic analyses revealed differential expression for thirteen genes related to carbohydrate metabolism, plant defense, and gene regulation. Our results indicate a rapid and contrasting phenotypic response among trees, likely influenced by standing genetic variation and/or plastic mechanisms. They open the door to future evolutionary studies for understanding how O3 tolerance develops in urban environments, and how this knowledge could contribute to forest restoration.

Mohammad Rowshan

and 4 more

Channel coding plays a pivotal role in ensuring reliable communication over wireless channels. With the growing need for ultra-reliable communication in emerging wireless use cases, the significance of channel coding has amplified. Furthermore, minimizing decoding latency is crucial for critical-mission applications, while optimizing energy efficiency is paramount for mobile and the Internet of Things (IoT) communications. As the fifth generation (5G) of mobile communications is currently in operation and 5G-advanced is on the horizon, the objective of this paper is to assess prominent channel coding schemes in the context of recent advancements and the anticipated requirements for the sixth generation (6G). In this paper, after considering the potential impact of channel coding on key performance indicators (KPIs) of wireless networks, we review the evolution of mobile communication standards and the organizations involved in the standardization, from the first generation (1G) to the current 5G, highlighting the technologies integral to achieving targeted KPIs such as reliability, data rate, latency, energy efficiency, spectral efficiency, connection density, and traffic capacity. Following this, we delve into the anticipated requirements for potential use cases in 6G. The subsequent sections of the paper focus on a comprehensive review of three primary coding schemes utilized in past generations and their recent advancements: lowdensity parity-check (LDPC) codes, turbo codes (including convolutional codes), and polar codes (alongside Reed-Muller codes). Additionally, we examine alternative coding schemes like Fountain codes (also known as rate-less codes), sparse regression codes, among others. Our evaluation includes a comparative analysis of error correction performance and the performance of hardware implementation for these coding schemes, providing insights into their potential and suitability for the upcoming 6G era. Lastly, we will briefly explore considerations such as higher-order modulations and waveform design, examining their contributions to enhancing key performance indicators in conjunction with channel coding schemes.
The involvement of users in the product development process can significantly enhance product quality. The relationship between user experience and knowledge in product design contributes to product efficiency during the development phase. Users often struggle to align their perceptions, leading to extended product usage times and an inability to react to potential performance variations. Product manufacturers also face challenges in identifying suitable features that can positively impact product success and marketability. User experience in product interactions, encompassing both aesthetic and functional aspects, plays a pivotal role in influencing user evaluations and distinguishing characteristics crucial for achieving product success. Determining user knowledge’s influence on product success characteristics can provide valuable insights for the new product development process. This study conducted a survey to gather user experiences and knowledge, aiming to enhance the understanding of how users perceive products. This understanding is crucial for identifying product success characteristics, encompassing aspects such as specifications, sustainability, and recognition, which are instrumental in achieving overall product success. The results of the survey indicate that user knowledge, emotional experiences, and product attribute knowledge can assist product designers and manufacturers in identifying key characteristics for success during the early stages of the new product development process.

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