85 research outputs found

    Global organizations and supply chain: new research avenues in the international human resource management

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    Purpose: This article aims at proposing a research agenda in the intersection of strategic supply chain management and logistics (SCML) of global organizations from the perspective of international human resource management (IHRM). Design/methodology/approach: To disclose the intellectual structure of research to date across both fields, the content of up to 280 articles dealing with IHRM and 174 papers addressing challenges in SCML in global organizations from a human resource management (HRM) viewpoint were analyzed. A stepwise hierarchical cluster and discriminant analysis were conducted to map a joint research agenda. Approaches from Upper Echelons theory and co-evolutionary theory of global organizations were adopted. Findings: Top management teams are crucial to manage SCML successfully in today’s global organizations. Research on this intersection should draw attention to find antecedents, consequences and the process showing how those talented people grouped in dispersed teams can be a source of competitive advantage. Six different areas of research are proposed. After discussing them, it is proposed that the mainstream should focus on the human capital, those key individuals of an organization that make things happen. In the near future, the global organization’s competitiveness will be shaped by how the organization manages its Human Capital (HC) in SCML. Methodologies such as meta-analysis are suggested to summarize the extant literature on IHRM when applied to SCML in global organizations. Research limitations/implications: The search was conducted in SSCI-ISIWoK and Scopus databases. As a limitation, some articles and other scientific contributions not abstracted there were not included. Nevertheless, both searches enabled obtaining balanced results between scope and richness of content. Originality/value: Only a marginal portion of literature reviews have been conducted by using mixed methods in the fields of IHRM and SCML. The results will be useful for scholars of both fields in their attempts to enlarge the knowledge boundaries in these areas. From a practitioner’s viewpoint, this research may provide an integrative framework for global organizations to build a competitive advantage based on managing HC and its SCML strategically

    Vulnerability of low-arsenic aquifers to municipal pumping in Bangladesh

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    Sandy aquifers deposited >12,000 years ago, some as shallow as 30 m, have provided a reliable supply of low-arsenic (As) drinking water in rural Bangladesh. This study concerns the potential risk of contaminating these aquifers in areas surrounding the city of Dhaka where hydraulic heads in aquifers >150 m deep have dropped by 70 m in a few decades due to municipal pumping. Water levels measured continuously from 2012 to 2014 in 12 deep (>150 m), 3 intermediate (90-150 m) and 6 shallow (<90 m) community wells, 1 shallow private well, and 1 river piezometer show that the resulting drawdown cone extends 15-35 km east of Dhaka. Water levels in 4 low-As community wells within the 62-147 m depth range closest to Dhaka were inaccessible by suction for up to a third of the year. Lateral hydraulic gradients in the deep aquifer system ranged from 1.7 × 10-4 to 3.7 × 10-4 indicating flow towards Dhaka throughout 2012-2014. Vertical recharge on the edge of the drawdown cone was estimated at 0.21 ± 0.06 m/yr. The data suggest that continued municipal pumping in Dhaka could eventually contaminate some relatively shallow community wells

    Physiological Induction of Regulatory Qa-1-Restricted CD8+ T Cells Triggered by Endogenous CD4+ T Cell Responses

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    T cell-dependent autoimmune diseases are characterized by the expansion of T cell clones that recognize immunodominant epitopes on the target antigen. As a consequence, for a given autoimmune disorder, pathogenic T cell clones express T cell receptors with a limited number of variable regions that define antigenic specificity. Qa-1, a MHC class I-like molecule, presents peptides from the variable region of TCRs to Qa-1-restricted CD8+ T cells. The induction of Vß-specific CD8+ T cells has been harnessed in an immunotherapeutic strategy known as the “T cell vaccination” (TCV) that comprises the injection of activated and attenuated CD4+ T cell clones so as to induce protective CD8+ T cells. We hypothesized that Qa-1-restricted CD8+ regulatory T cells could also constitute a physiologic regulatory arm of lymphocyte responses upon expansion of endogenous CD4+ T cells, in the absence of deliberate exogenous T cell vaccination. We immunized mice with two types of antigenic challenges in order to sequentially expand antigen-specific endogenous CD4+ T cells with distinct antigenic specificities but characterized by a common Vß chain in their TCR. The first immunization was performed with a non-self antigen while the second challenge was performed with a myelin-derived peptide known to drive experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), a mouse model of multiple sclerosis. We show that regulatory Vß-specific Qa-1-restricted CD8+ T cells induced during the first endogenous CD4+ T cell responses are able to control the expansion of subsequently mobilized pathogenic autoreactive CD4+ T cells. In conclusion, apart from the immunotherapeutic TCV, Qa-1-restricted specialized CD8+ regulatory T cells can also be induced during endogenous CD4+ T cell responses. At variance with other regulatory T cell subsets, the action of these Qa-1-restricted T cells seems to be restricted to the immediate re-activation of CD4+ T cells

    Consensus on circulatory shock and hemodynamic monitoring. Task force of the European Society of Intensive Care Medicine.

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    OBJECTIVE: Circulatory shock is a life-threatening syndrome resulting in multiorgan failure and a high mortality rate. The aim of this consensus is to provide support to the bedside clinician regarding the diagnosis, management and monitoring of shock. METHODS: The European Society of Intensive Care Medicine invited 12 experts to form a Task Force to update a previous consensus (Antonelli et al.: Intensive Care Med 33:575-590, 2007). The same five questions addressed in the earlier consensus were used as the outline for the literature search and review, with the aim of the Task Force to produce statements based on the available literature and evidence. These questions were: (1) What are the epidemiologic and pathophysiologic features of shock in the intensive care unit ? (2) Should we monitor preload and fluid responsiveness in shock ? (3) How and when should we monitor stroke volume or cardiac output in shock ? (4) What markers of the regional and microcirculation can be monitored, and how can cellular function be assessed in shock ? (5) What is the evidence for using hemodynamic monitoring to direct therapy in shock ? Four types of statements were used: definition, recommendation, best practice and statement of fact. RESULTS: Forty-four statements were made. The main new statements include: (1) statements on individualizing blood pressure targets; (2) statements on the assessment and prediction of fluid responsiveness; (3) statements on the use of echocardiography and hemodynamic monitoring. CONCLUSIONS: This consensus provides 44 statements that can be used at the bedside to diagnose, treat and monitor patients with shock

    Treatment delay of bone tumours, compilation of a sociodemographic risk profile: A retrospective study

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    <p>Abstract</p> <p>Background</p> <p>Bone tumours are comparatively rare tumours and delays in diagnosis and treatment are common. The purpose of this study was to analyse sociodemographic risk factors for bone tumour patients in order to identify those at risk of prolonged patients delay (time span from first symptoms to consultation), professional delay (from consultation to treatment) or symptom interval (from first symptoms to treatment). Understanding these relationships might enable us to shorten time to diagnosis and therapy.</p> <p>Methods</p> <p>We carried out a retrospective analysis of 265 patients with bone tumours documenting sociodemographic factors, patient delay, professional delay and symptom interval. A multivariate explorative Cox model was performed for each delay.</p> <p>Results</p> <p>Female gender was associated with a prolonged patient delay. Age under 30 years and rural living predisposes to a prolonged professional delay and symptom interval.</p> <p>Conclusion</p> <p>Early diagnosis and prompt treatment are required for successful management of most bone tumour patients. We succeeded in identifying the histology independent risk factors of age under 30 years and rural habitation for treatment delay in bone tumour patients. Knowing about the existence of these risk groups age under 30 years and female gender could help the physician to diagnose bone tumours earlier. The causes for the treatment delays of patients living in a rural area have to be investigated further. If the delay initiates in the lower education of rural general physicians, further training about bone tumours might advance early detection. Hence the outcome of patients with bone tumours could be improved.</p

    Phytolith Analysis for Differentiating between Foxtail Millet (Setaria italica) and Green Foxtail (Setaria viridis)

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    Foxtail millet (Setaria italica) is one of the oldest domesticated cereal crops in Eurasia, but identifying foxtail millets, especially in charred grains, and differentiating it from its wild ancestor, green foxtail (Setaria viridis), in the archaeobotanical remains, is still problematic. Phytolithic analysis provides a meaningful method for identifying this important crop. In this paper, the silicon structure patterns in the glumes, lemmas, and paleas from inflorescence bracts in 16 modern plants of foxtail millet and green foxtail from China and Europe are examined using light microscopy with phase-contrast and a microscopic interferometer. Our research shows that the silicon structure of ΩIII from upper lemmas and paleas in foxtail millet and green foxtail can be correspondingly divided into two groups. The size of ΩIII type phytolith of foxtail millet is bigger than that from green foxtail. Discriminant function analysis reveals that 78.4% of data on foxtail millet and 76.9% of data on green foxtail are correctly classified. This means certain morphotypes of phytoliths are relatively reliable tools for distinguishing foxtail millet from green foxtail. Our results also revealed that the husk phytolith morphologies of foxtail millets from China and Eastern Europe are markedly different from those from Western Europe. Our research gives a meaningful method of separating foxtail millet and green foxtail. The implications of these findings for understanding the history of foxtail millet domestication and cultivation in ancient civilizations are significant

    Clinical, Epidemiologic, Histopathologic and Molecular Features of an Unexplained Dermopathy

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    BACKGROUND: Morgellons is a poorly characterized constellation of symptoms, with the primary manifestations involving the skin. We conducted an investigation of this unexplained dermopathy to characterize the clinical and epidemiologic features and explore potential etiologies. METHODS: A descriptive study was conducted among persons at least 13 years of age and enrolled in Kaiser Permanente Northern California (KPNC) during 2006-2008. A case was defined as the self-reported emergence of fibers or materials from the skin accompanied by skin lesions and/or disturbing skin sensations. We collected detailed epidemiologic data, performed clinical evaluations and geospatial analyses and analyzed materials collected from participants' skin. RESULTS: We identified 115 case-patients. The prevalence was 3.65 (95% CI = 2.98, 4.40) cases per 100,000 enrollees. There was no clustering of cases within the 13-county KPNC catchment area (p = .113). Case-patients had a median age of 52 years (range: 17-93) and were primarily female (77%) and Caucasian (77%). Multi-system complaints were common; 70% reported chronic fatigue and 54% rated their overall health as fair or poor with mean Physical Component Scores and Mental Component Scores of 36.63 (SD = 12.9) and 35.45 (SD = 12.89), respectively. Cognitive deficits were detected in 59% of case-patients and 63% had evidence of clinically significant somatic complaints; 50% had drugs detected in hair samples and 78% reported exposure to solvents. Solar elastosis was the most common histopathologic abnormality (51% of biopsies); skin lesions were most consistent with arthropod bites or chronic excoriations. No parasites or mycobacteria were detected. Most materials collected from participants' skin were composed of cellulose, likely of cotton origin. CONCLUSIONS: This unexplained dermopathy was rare among this population of Northern California residents, but associated with significantly reduced health-related quality of life. No common underlying medical condition or infectious source was identified, similar to more commonly recognized conditions such as delusional infestation

    Trees on networks: resolving statistical patterns of phylogenetic similarities among interacting proteins

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    <p>Abstract</p> <p>Background</p> <p>Phylogenies capture the evolutionary ancestry linking extant species. Correlations and similarities among a set of species are mediated by and need to be understood in terms of the phylogenic tree. In a similar way it has been argued that biological networks also induce correlations among sets of interacting genes or their protein products.</p> <p>Results</p> <p>We develop suitable statistical resampling schemes that can incorporate these two potential sources of correlation into a single inferential framework. To illustrate our approach we apply it to protein interaction data in yeast and investigate whether the phylogenetic trees of interacting proteins in a panel of yeast species are more similar than would be expected by chance.</p> <p>Conclusions</p> <p>While we find only negligible evidence for such increased levels of similarities, our statistical approach allows us to resolve the previously reported contradictory results on the levels of co-evolution induced by protein-protein interactions. We conclude with a discussion as to how we may employ the statistical framework developed here in further functional and evolutionary analyses of biological networks and systems.</p


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    Oncogene–induced DNA damage elicits genomic instability in epithelial cancer cells, but apoptosis is blocked through inactivation of the tumor suppressor p53. In hematological cancers, the relevance of ongoing DNA damage and mechanisms by which apoptosis is suppressed are largely unknown. We found pervasive DNA damage in hematologic malignancies including multiple myeloma, lymphoma and leukemia, which leads to activation of a p53–independent, pro-apoptotic network centered on nuclear relocalization of ABL1 kinase. Although nuclear ABL1 triggers cell death through its interaction with the Hippo pathway co–activator YAP1 in normal cells, we show that low YAP1 levels prevent nuclear ABL1–induced apoptosis in these hematologic malignancies. YAP1 is under the control of a serine–threonine kinase, STK4. Importantly, genetic inactivation of STK4 restores YAP1 levels, triggering cell death in vitro and in vivo. Our data therefore identify a novel synthetic–lethal strategy to selectively target cancer cells presenting with endogenous DNA damage and low YAP1 levels
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