Background: People with cystic fibrosis (PwCF) have chronic lung disease and may be at increased risk of COVID-19-related morbidity and mortality. This study aimed to determine seroprevalence and clinical characteristics of SARS-CoV-2 infection in children with CF, and to assess antibody responses following SARS-CoV-2 infection or vaccination. Methods: Children and adolescents with CF followed at Seattle Children’s Hospital were enrolled between July 20, 2020 and February 28, 2021. SARS-CoV-2 serostatus was determined on enrollment, at 6 and 11 months (+/-2 months) for nucleocapsid and spike IgG. Participants completed intake and weekly surveys inquiring about SARS-CoV-2 exposures, viral/respiratory illnesses, and symptoms. Results: Of 125 PwCF enrolled, 14 (11%) had positive SARS-CoV-2 antibodies consistent with recent or past infection. Seropositive participants were more likely to identify as Hispanic (29% vs 8%, p=0.04) and have pulmonary exacerbations requiring oral antibiotics in the year prior (71% vs 41%, p = 0.04). Five seropositive individuals (35.7%) were asymptomatic, while six (42.9%) reported mild symptoms, primarily cough and nasal congestion. Anti-spike protein IgG levels were approximately 10-fold higher in participants following vaccination compared with participants who had natural infection alone (p < 0.0001) and resembled levels previously reported in the general population. Conclusions: A majority of PwCF have mild or no symptoms of SARS-CoV-2 making it difficult to distinguish from baseline respiratory symptoms. Hispanic PwCF may be disproportionately impacted, consistent with racial and ethnic COVID-19 disparities among the general US population. Vaccination in PwCF generated antibody responses similar to those previously reported in the general population.
With the ever-changing social environment, individual creativity is facing a severe challenge induced by stress. However, little is known about the physiological mechanisms by which acute stress affects creative cognitive processing. The current study explored the effects of neuroendocrine response on creativity under stress and its underlying cognitive flexibility mechanisms. The Enzyme-Linked Immuno Sorbent Assay was used to assess salivary cortisol, which acted as a marker of stress-induced activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. Eye blink rate (EBR) and pupil diameter were measured as respective indicators of dopamine and noradrenaline released by activation of the sympathetic-adrenal medullary (SAM) axis. The Wisconsin Card Task (WCST) measured cognitive flexibility, while the Alternative Uses Task (AUT) and the Remote Association Task (RAT) measured separately divergent and convergent thinking in creativity. Results showed higher cortisol increments following acute stress induction in the stress group compared to the control group. Ocular results showed that the stress manipulation significantly increased EBR and pupil diameter compared to controls, reflecting increased SAM activity. Further analysis revealed that stress-released cortisol impaired the originality component of the AUT by increasing perspective errors of the WCST. Serial mediation analyses showed that both EBR and pupil diameter were also associated with increased perspective errors leading to poor originality on the AUT. These findings confirm that physiological arousal under stress can impair divergent thinking through the regulation of different neuroendocrine pathways, in which the deterioration of flexible switching plays an important mediating role.
Maintaining aircraft airworthiness to ensure the fleet's safe operation and maintain its readiness is critically dependent on accurate modelling and reliable predictions of fatigue crack growth. In this process a knowledge of the representative initial discontinuity sizes that cause fatigue crack nucleation and early growth in aircraft is essential. Here the effective pre-crack size of aluminium alloy 2024, from samples of aircraft production material and tested under aircraft spectra, are considered.
Problem: Human papillomavirus infection is integral to developing invasive cervical cancer in the majority of patients. It is unclear how genetic susceptibility to HPV infection directs cervical disease development by affecting host immune response. In a recent genome-wide association study, rs9357152 and rs4243652 have been associated with seropositivity for HPV16 or HPV18, respectively. Methods: We investigate whether the two HPV susceptibility variants show association with subtype-specific cervical cancer in a genetic case-control study (rs9357152: N controls=560, N HPV16+cases= 334; rs4243652: N controls= 544, N HPV18+cases= 115). We further tested whether rs9357152 modulates gene expression of any of 36 genes at the human leukocyte antigen locus in 257 cervical tissues. Results: rs9357152 was associated with invasive HPV16+ve cancer (OR 1.30, 95% CI 1.01-1.66, P= 0.04) whereas rs4243652 was associated with HPV18+ve adenocarcinomas (OR=2.71, 95% CI=1.09-6.75, P= 0.03). rs9357152 was found to be an eQTL for HLA-DRB1 in HPV positive tissues (p ANOVA=0.0009), with the risk allele lowering mRNA levels. Conclusions: HPV seropositivity variants at chromosome 6 and 14 modulate subtype-specific cervical cancer risk. rs9357152 may exert its effect through regulating HLA-DRB1 in the presence of HPV.
Undesired oscillation components appear in active and reactive powers, electromagnetic torque and DC-link voltage of doubly fed induction generators (DFIGs) connected to unbalanced grid voltage. These components oscillate at double source frequency as a result of negative sequence components in voltage and current. Different direct power control (DPC) techniques were studied in literatures to damp these oscillations. However, these techniques require sequence decomposition process, axes transformation of stator voltage/current and estimation of different power components which complicate the overall control system. This paper presents a simplified DPC of DFIGs in stationary reference frame under normal and unbalanced grid voltage. Decomposition process, axes transformation and compensation power terms are totally eliminated. Vector proportional- integral (VPI) controllers are designed to regulate stator active and reactive powers. The performance of the proposed DPC scheme using VPI and proportional-integral-resonant (PIR) controllers is analyzed and compared under different operating conditions. Bode diagram of open loop and closed loop control using VPI and PIR are studied to illustrate stability, steady state and transient response of the two controllers. Also, the performance of proposed technique and previous DPCs designed in synchronous reference frame is compared to prove the validity of proposed one. The results show that proposed DPC using VPI has superior performance in steady state and transient conditions with simple implementation.
Introduction:Malaria infects humans through the bite of the Anopheles mosquito that transmits the Plasmodium parasite. There are five species of plasmodium: falciparum, vivax, ovale , Malariae and Knowlesi. Some Authors have suggested that Malarial splenic complications are associated with plasmodium vivax infection Malaria infection alone has the greatest impact on global health, affecting more than 500 million individuals with more than 2.5 million deaths every year. It can manifest as an acute febrile illness, but it can lead to severe complications such as shock, respiratory distress, severe anemia, convulsions, intra-abdominal organ inflammation, and bleeding caused by spontaneous splenic rupture  According to the WHO, malaria is endemic in Sudan, and over 1.8 million cases have been reported in 2019, representing 12.4% of all diseases surveyed by the health sector with a mortality rate of 13 per 10,000. . Malarial infection incidence in Sudan was estimated to be 9 million cases per year in 2007 with 44,000 deaths related to malaria complications. The spleen plays an important role in immunity against malaria by producing antibodies against malaria parasites, this can lead to splenic enlargement making it more susceptible to complications such as hematoma formation and rupture .
Introduction : Pulsed field ablation (PFA) is a non-thermal ablative strategy that achieves cell death via electroporation. Herein, we investigated the preclinical safety and efficacy of PFA using two novel 8-French, 16-electrode spiral PFA/mapping catheters (ElePulse, CRC EP, Inc). M ethods : Bipolar PFA (>1.8 kV) was performed using 30 sec, single-shot, QRS-gated applications. Altogether, 94 atrial structures were ablated in 23 swine, 1 canine, and 1 ovine, including right and left atria and atrial appendages, pulmonary veins, and superior and inferior (IVC) vena cavae. We also examined the impact of PFA on phrenic nerve (14 swine) and on a deviated esophagus after delivery of PFA from inside the IVC (5 swine). Results: All applications were single-shot without catheter repositioning. Minimal microbubbling was observed without significant skeletal muscle twitching/activation (mean acceleration: 0.05 m/s 2). There was marked reduction in post- versus pre-PFA atrial electrogram amplitude (0.17±0.21 mV vs. 1.18±1.08 mV; P<0.0001). Durable conduction block was demonstrated up to 3 months in all targeted tissues. Lesions were contiguous and transmural, measuring 25±9 mm x 21±7 mm without any thermal effects. Magnetic resonance, gross, and histologic examinations of the brain, rete mirabile, and kidneys revealed no thromboembolism. No acute/long-term phrenic nerve dysfunction was encountered. Though within 2 hours of ablation, histologic examinations of the esophagus revealed acute PFA-related changes in the muscular layer, these completely resolved by 21±5 days. Conclusion : A novel, single-shot, spiral PFA system is capable of safely creating large, durable atrial lesions without significant adverse effects on the phrenic nerve or the esophagus.
1. INTRODUCTIONOsteochondromas (OC) are benign tumors that account for 20-50% of benign and 10% of all bone tumors. The incidence rate of OC in males is twice that of females and its peak is usually in the second decade of life (1). These lesions are inherited in an autosomal dominant manner and cause the formation of isolated lesions or multiple exostoses during the development of bones in the process of enchondral ossification in the long bones (2). Also, OC is associated with the mutation of some tumor suppressor genes, including EXT1 or EXT2 genes. OC have a periosteal origin and are formed in the active parts of bones, including the metaphysis of long bones and the cartilage at their ends. Studies show that OC can be caused after surgery/radiation-induced injury and hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (3).Osteocartilaginous exostosis is mainly detected in childhood and in the form of palpable masses, with chronic pain and sometimes with edema (4). The presence of misplaced bone masses in the joint capsule and sometimes with cartilaginous coating in radiographic images is one of its common manifestations. The most common joints involved in OC are the hip and knee joints. Patellar OC is rare and mostly affects the patellar bursa. Moraes et al. (2014) reported a patellar OC measuring 8 × 6 × 3 cm anterior to the patella in a 60-year-old man who was painless and without limitation of flexion-extension in the knee joint (5). In the present case, rare retro-patellar OC was observed in the area of the patellar ligament.
Reproductive isolation plays an important role in maintaining the species integrity of sympatric close relatives. For sympatric Arisaema species, interspecific gene flow is expected to be effectively prevented by pre-pollination barriers, particularly strong pollinator isolation mediated by fungus gnats. However, due to the lack of quantitative studies combining multiple pre- and post-pollination barriers, it is not known whether pre-pollination isolation is complete, and whether post-pollination barriers also contribute to reproductive isolation among some Arisaema species. We studied five pre- and post-pollination barriers (geographic isolation, phenological isolation, pollinator isolation, hybrid fruit production, and hybrid seed formation) among three sympatric Arisaema species (A. bockii, A. lobatum, and A. erubescens). The strength of individual barriers and their contribution to total isolation were quantified.The habitat elevations of the three Arisaema species mostly overlapped. Although phenological isolation and pollinator isolation reduced the frequencies of interspecific pollen transfer among these species, the partial overlap of flowering times and pollinator assemblages resulted in pre-pollination isolation that does not adequately prevent interspecific hybridization. Post-pollination barriers also contributed to reproductive isolation at the hybrid fruit and seed formation stages.We propose that, although pre-pollination barriers are expected to contribute more to total isolation than post-pollination barriers in Arisaema, pre-pollination barriers may not completely prevent interspecific pollen transfer among some Arisaema species. Post-pollination barriers, which are generally ignored, may also have contributed significantly to reproductive isolation in Arisaema.
The Mississippi River channel from New Orleans to the Gulf of Mexico (GOM) is a key deep draft navigation channel and an active deltaic lobe. Natural and engineered lateral exits from this reach into adjacent receiving basins historically has provided mineral sediment for wetland accretion in the face of rising relative sea level and supported estuarine-coastal food webs. However, our analysis indicates water losses from the channel have increased by 25% since 2004 due to (1) bank failures during large floods since 2012 that have created several large exit channels downriver of the flood protection levee, and (2) the opening of an engineered diversion at West Bay in 2004. This has resulted in a 60-80% loss in stream power in the lowermost navigation channel that is accompanied by net shoaling between 2012 and 2022 and an increased dredging need. Our 2022 survey in the GOM exit passes indicates that only 20% of the freshwater, 5% of the total suspended sediment (2% of the sand) at New Orleans now reaches the GOM: this supports previous research indicating the delta front is retreating after centuries of progradation. Together these results indicate that (1) river containment and the sustainability of the navigation channel is threatened, (2) sediment load reaching the seaward end of the delta may be insufficient to avoid major degradation, and (3) the increased freshwater flux into adjacent shallow coastal water bodies has unknown implications for coastal hypoxia and food webs, including commercial species (e.g., oysters) and marine mammals. Future acceleration in sea level rise rates and tropical storm frequency/intensity likely will worsen these trends.
Background: Students’ academic achievement is regarded as the scholastic standing of students at the end of a given study period that is expressed in terms of grades. The key to bridging the attainment gap at the end of their study period is through their cumulative grade points over the duration of the study. Predictive validity study on students first-year GPA as a predictor of their final-year CGPA was carried out to predict the students’ academic performance in Chemical, Civil, Electrical, and Mechanical Engineering. Purpose/Hypothesis: This study examined the relationship between first-year GPA and final-year CGPA, as well as the relationship between Age, Gender and Geopolitical zones on first-year GPA and CGPA of Engineering students in the Faculty of Engineering students University of Abuja, Nigeria. The data obtained from the four Departments; Chemical, Civil, Electrical and Mechanical were analyzed. Two hypotheses were formulated to guide the study. Design/Method: An ex-post factor research approach was adopted, and Pearson’s correlation and Regression Analysis were fitted with the data using Minitab software. Results: The results of the study highlighted that first-year GPA had a strong positive relationship with final-year CGPA. Age, Gender and Geopolitical zones have no correlation with students’ final-year CGPA. The regression equations can be used to predict students’ CGPA to bridge the attainment gap at the end of their studies. Conclusions: Finally, the study emphasized the need to admit more female students in Engineering studies as they constitute 12.9% of the population.
This study explores the development and testing of a social resilience psychometric scale, through physical and social unrest during the COVID-19 pandemic. Qualitative interviews (N = 40) were aggregated to define social resilience measured statements. When tested in quantitative analysis respondents (N = 901) “see myself as a monster” when evaluating others and are “scared to let people know the real me” fearing loss of relationships. Anxiety is heightened through a perception through the measure “could have done better.” When testing for “want to be liked even when disagree on issues” Black respondents are significantly different than White, Asian and those expressing other races. Liberals and moderate conservatives are significantly different in perception of social resilience, as are those exemplifying feminine versus masculine traits. Logistic regression testing for “comfortable with who I am in society” indicates narcissism (65% more likely) and negative social resilience (56% more likely) are key adapters. Human wellbeing, the act of perceiving self as a healthy or unhealthy actor in society, has been influenced through groupthink and polarization of the “other.” This study suggests the construct of self-esteem has been pushed into reactive mode. Research that explicates the psychological dimensions of modern resilience, is warranted.
In vascular dementia (VD), memory impairment caused by the damage of synaptic plasticity is the most prominent feature that afflicts patients and their families. Treadmill exercise has proven beneficial for memory by enhancing synaptic plasticity in animal models including stroke, dementia, and mental disorders. The aim of this study was to examine the effects of treadmill exercise on recognition memory, and structural synaptic plasticity in VD rat model. Here, our study demonstrated that VD rat exhibited significantly recognition impairment, while treadmill exercise improved recognition memory in VD rat. To further investigate potential mechanisms for the treadmill exercise-induced improvement of recognition memory, we examined hippocampal structural synaptic plasticity by means of transmission electron microscopy and golgi staining in VD rat that had undergone 4 weeks of treadmill exercise. The results demonstrated that VD rat causes the damage of structural synaptic plasticity. However, treadmill exercise led to increases in synapse numbers and the number of dendritic spines in VD rat. Together, the improvement of VD-associated recognition memory by treadmill exercises is associated with enhanced structural synaptic plasticity in VD rat model.
Working memory (WM) is one of the fundamental cognitive functions associated with the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC). However, we still know little about the neurochemical mechanisms of WM in the DLPFC. Here, we investigated WM-related dynamic neurometabolite and hemodynamic responses in the DLPFC. We measured Glx (glutamate+glutamine) and GABA alterations as well as blood-oxygen-level-dependent (BOLD) signal changes during a WM task combining functional magnetic resonance spectroscopy and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). In the DLPFC, we found that a 2-back task increased Glx concentrations and larger BOLD signal changes, and that these task-modulated Glx increases were positively correlated with task-induced regional activity. Importantly, task induced Glx changes in the DLPFC were associated with individual WM performance. Higher Glx increases were associated with increased DLPFC activation and lower WM task performance in the individuals. There were no changes in DLPFC GABA levels during WM processing. Our findings suggest that glutamatergic modulation in the DLPFC may play a critical role in WM processing and its performance.