5,463 research outputs found

    Molecular characterization of commensal Escherichia coli adapted to different compartments of the porcine gastrointestinal tract

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    The role of Escherichia coli as a pathogen has been the focus of considerable study, while much less is known about it as a commensal and how it adapts to and colonizes different environmental niches within the mammalian gut. In this study, we characterize Escherichia coli organisms (n=146) isolated from different regions of the intestinal tracts of eight pigs (dueodenum, ileum, colon, and feces). The isolates were typed using the method of random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) and screened for the presence of bacteriocin genes and plasmid replicon types. Molecular analysis of variance using the RAPD data showed that E. coli isolates are nonrandomly distributed among different gut regions, and that gut region accounted for 25% (

    Detecting shapes in noise: tuning characteristics of global shape mechanisms.

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    The proportion of signal elements embedded in noise needed to detect a signal is a standard tool for investigating motion perception. This paradigm was applied to the shape domain to determine how local information is pooled into a global percept. Stimulus arrays consisted of oriented Gabor elements that sampled the circumference of concentric radial frequency (RF) patterns. Individual Gabors were oriented tangentially to the shape (signal) or randomly (noise). In different conditions, signal elements were located randomly within the entire array or constrained to fall along one of the concentric contours. Coherence thresholds were measured for RF patterns with various frequencies (number of corners) and amplitudes ("sharpness" of corners). Coherence thresholds (about 10% = 15 elements) were lowest for circular shapes. Manipulating shape frequency or amplitude showed a range where thresholds remain unaffected (frequency ≤ RF4; amplitude ≤ 0.05). Increasing either parameter caused thresholds to rise. Compared to circles, thresholds increased by approximately four times for RF13 and five times for amplitudes of 0.3. Confining the signals to individual contours significantly reduced the number of elements needed to reach threshold (between 4 and 6), independent of the total number of elements on the contour or contour shape. Finally, adding external noise to the orientation of the elements had a greater effect on detection thresholds than adding noise to their position. These results provide evidence for a series of highly sensitive, shape-specific analysers which sum information globally but only from within specific annuli. These global mechanisms are tuned to position and orientation of local elements from which they pool information. The overall performance for arrays of elements can be explained by the sensitivity of multiple, independent concentric shape detectors rather than a single detector integrating information widely across space (e.g. Glass pattern detector)

    A kilobit hidden SNFS discrete logarithm computation

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    We perform a special number field sieve discrete logarithm computation in a 1024-bit prime field. To our knowledge, this is the first kilobit-sized discrete logarithm computation ever reported for prime fields. This computation took a little over two months of calendar time on an academic cluster using the open-source CADO-NFS software. Our chosen prime pp looks random, and p−−1p--1 has a 160-bit prime factor, in line with recommended parameters for the Digital Signature Algorithm. However, our p has been trapdoored in such a way that the special number field sieve can be used to compute discrete logarithms in F_p∗\mathbb{F}\_p^* , yet detecting that p has this trapdoor seems out of reach. Twenty-five years ago, there was considerable controversy around the possibility of back-doored parameters for DSA. Our computations show that trapdoored primes are entirely feasible with current computing technology. We also describe special number field sieve discrete log computations carried out for multiple weak primes found in use in the wild. As can be expected from a trapdoor mechanism which we say is hard to detect, our research did not reveal any trapdoored prime in wide use. The only way for a user to defend against a hypothetical trapdoor of this kind is to require verifiably random primes

    Cigarette Smoking and Minority Stress Across Age Cohorts in a National Sample of Sexual Minorities: Results From the Generations Study

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    BACKGROUND: Sexual minority populations in the United States have persistently higher rates of cigarette use than heterosexuals, partially driven by exposure to minority stressors (e.g., discrimination and victimization). Little is known about cigarette use across cohorts of sexual minority adults who came of age in distinctly different sociopolitical environments. PURPOSE: To examine cigarette use and minority stressors across three age cohorts of U.S. sexual minority adults. METHODS: We used data from the Generations Study, a nationally representative sample (N = 1,500) of White, Black, and Latino/a sexual minority adults in three age cohorts (younger: 18-25 years; middle: 34-41 years; and older: 52-59 years). Survey data were collected from March 2016 to March 2017. We used sex-stratified logistic regression models to estimate adjusted odds ratios (aORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for associations between age cohort, minority stressors (discrimination and victimization), and two indicators of cigarette smoking (lifetime use and current use). RESULTS: Prevalence of current cigarette use in each age cohort was high (younger: 20%; middle: 33%; and older: 29%). Relative to the younger cohort, men and women in the middle- and older-age cohorts had significantly higher odds of lifetime and current smoking (e.g., men, current, aOR [95% CI]: middle = 2.47 [1.34, 4.52], older = 2.85 [1.66, 4.93]). Minority stressors were independently associated with higher odds of current smoking; when victimization was included, the magnitude of the association between age cohort and current smoking was diminished but remained significant. CONCLUSIONS: Smoking cessation interventions must consider the role of minority stress and the unique needs of sexual minority people across the life course

    Resource use data by patient report or hospital records: Do they agree?

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    Background: Economic evaluations alongside clinical trials are becoming increasingly common. Cost data are often collected through the use of postal questionnaires; however, the accuracy of this method is uncertain. We compared postal questionnaires with hospital records for collecting data on physiotherapy service use. Methods: As part of a randomised trial of orthopaedic medicine compared with orthopaedic surgery we collected physiotherapy use data on a group of patients from retrospective postal questionnaires and from hospital records. Results: 315 patients were referred for physiotherapy. Hospital data on attendances was available for 30% (n = 96), compared with 48% (n = 150) of patients completing questionnaire data (95% Cl for difference = 10% to 24%); 19% (n = 59) had data available from both sources. The two methods produced an intraclass correlation coefficient of 0.54 (95% Cl 0.31 to 0.70). However, the two methods produced significantly different estimates of resource use with patient self report recalling a mean of 1.3 extra visits (95% Cl 0.4 to 2.2) compared with hospital records. Conclusions: Using questionnaires in this study produced data on a greater number of patients compared with examination of hospital records. However, the two data sources did differ in the quantity of physiotherapy used and this should be taken into account in any analysi

    The arithmetic of hyperelliptic curves

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    We summarise recent advances in techniques for solving Diophantine problems on hyperelliptic curves; in particular, those for finding the rank of the Jacobian, and the set of rational points on the curve

    PCV13 induced IgG responses in serum associate with serotype-specific IgG in the lung

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    Pneumococcal conjugate vaccine efficacy is lower for non-invasive pneumonia than invasive disease. In this study, participants were vaccinated with PCV13 or HepA (control). Bronchoalveolar lavage samples were taken between 2-6 months and serum at 4- and 7-weeks post vaccination. In the lung, anti-capsular IgG levels were higher in the PCV13 group compared to control for all serotypes, except 3 and 6B. Systemically, IgG levels were elevated in the PCV group at 4-weeks for all serotypes, except 3. IgG in BAL and serum positively correlated for nearly all serotypes. PCV13 shows poor immunogenicity to serotype 3, implying lack of protective efficacy. Clinical trial registration with ISRCTN: 4534043
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