3,044 research outputs found

    The electroretinogram:a useful tool for evaluating age-related macular disease?

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    With an ageing population, the number of age-related macular disease (ARMD) cases will inevitably rise. This gives greater impetus for the need to identify the disease earlier and assess treatments to slow disease progression. Differing electroretinogram (ERG) modalities have been reviewed in relation to the objective assessment of retinal function in ARMD and for monitoring the effectiveness of clinical interventions. Conflicting results have been found with regard to the efficacy of ERG findings in the investigation of ARMD in previous years. The newer multifocal ERG paradigm provides spatial topographical information about retinal function in ARMD. It has shown promising results in monitoring effectiveness of clinical interventions and studies are continuing in this area. Better knowledge of retinal function in ARMD may lead to enhanced treatments at each phase of the disease

    Assessing the potential outcomes of achieving the World Health Organization global non-communicable diseases targets for risk factors by 2025: is there also an economic dividend?

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    International audienceOBJECTIVES:This study assesses the change in premature mortality and in morbidity under the scenario of meeting the World Health Organization (WHO) global targets for non-communicable disease (NCD) risk factors (RFs) by 2025 in France. It also estimates medical expenditure savings because of the reduction of NCD burden.STUDY DESIGN:A microsimulation model is used to predict the future health and economic outcomes in France.METHODS:A 'RF targets' scenario, assuming the achievement of the six targets on RFs by 2025, is compared to a counterfactual scenario with respect to disability-adjusted life years and healthcare costs differences.RESULTS:The achievement of the RFs targets by 2025 would save about 25,300 (and 75,500) life years in good health in the population aged 25-64 (respectively 65+) years on average every year and would help to reduce healthcare costs by about €660 million on average per year, which represents 0.35% of the current annual healthcare spending in France. Such a reduction in RFs (net of the natural decreasing trend in mortality) would contribute to achieving about half of the 2030 NCD premature mortality target in France.CONCLUSIONS:The achievement of the RF targets would lead France to save life years and life years in good health in both working-age and retired people and would modestly reduce healthcare expenditures. To achieve RFs targets and to curb the growing burden of NCDs, France has to strengthen existing and implement new policy interventions

    Release Note -- Vbfnlo-2.6.0

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    Vbfnlo is a flexible parton level Monte Carlo program for the simulation of vector boson fusion (VBF), double and triple vector boson (plus jet) production in hadronic collisions at next-to-leading order (NLO) in the strong coupling constant, as well as Higgs boson plus two jet production via gluon fusion at the one-loop level. This note briefly describes the main additional features and processes that have been added in the new release -- Vbfnlo Version 2.6.0. At NLO QCD diboson production (W\gamma, WZ, ZZ, Z\gamma and \gamma\gamma), same-sign W pair production via vector boson fusion and the process W\gamma\gamma j have been implemented (for which one-loop tensor integrals up to six-point functions are included). In addition, gluon induced diboson production can be studied separately at the leading order (one-loop) level. The diboson processes WW, WZ and W\gamma can be run with anomalous gauge boson couplings, and anomalous couplings between a Higgs and a pair of gauge bosons is included in WW, ZZ, Z\gamma and \gamma\gamma diboson production. The code has also been extended to include anomalous gauge boson couplings for single vector boson production via VBF, and a spin-2 model has been implemented for diboson pair production via vector boson fusion.Comment: 14 pages, 6 tables; new code available at http://www-itp.particle.uni-karlsruhe.de/vbfnlo

    Human Female Genital Tract Infection by the Obligate Intracellular Bacterium Chlamydia trachomatis Elicits Robust Type 2 Immunity

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    While Chlamydia trachomatis infections are frequently asymptomatic, mechanisms that regulate host response to this intracellular Gram-negative bacterium remain undefined. This investigation thus used peripheral blood mononuclear cells and endometrial tissue from women with or without Chlamydia genital tract infection to better define this response. Initial genome-wide microarray analysis revealed highly elevated expression of matrix metalloproteinase 10 and other molecules characteristic of Type 2 immunity (e.g., fibrosis and wound repair) in Chlamydia-infected tissue. This result was corroborated in flow cytometry and immunohistochemistry studies that showed extant upper genital tract Chlamydia infection was associated with increased co-expression of CD200 receptor and CD206 (markers of alternative macrophage activation) by endometrial macrophages as well as increased expression of GATA-3 (the transcription factor regulating TH2 differentiation) by endometrial CD4+ T cells. Also among women with genital tract Chlamydia infection, peripheral CD3+ CD4+ and CD3+ CD4- cells that proliferated in response to ex vivo stimulation with inactivated chlamydial antigen secreted significantly more interleukin (IL)-4 than tumor necrosis factor, interferon-γ, or IL-17; findings that repeated in T cells isolated from these same women 1 and 4 months after infection had been eradicated. Our results thus newly reveal that genital infection by an obligate intracellular bacterium induces polarization towards Type 2 immunity, including Chlamydia-specific TH2 development. Based on these findings, we now speculate that Type 2 immunity was selected by evolution as the host response to C. trachomatis in the human female genital tract to control infection and minimize immunopathological damage to vital reproductive structures. © 2013 Vicetti Miguel et al

    Anthropogenic and natural ground deformation in the Hengill geothermal area, Iceland

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    We investigate crustal deformation due to the extraction of water and steam from a high-enthalpy geothermal reservoir; a common occurrence, yet not well understood. The cause of this deformation can be a change in pressure or in temperature in the reservoir, both of which can be caused by extraction or injection of geothermal fluids. Our study area, the Hengill mountains in SW Iceland, is an active volcanic center and a plate triple junction that hosts two power plants producing geothermal energy. This combination of natural and anthropogenic processes causes a complex displacement field at the surface. We analyze geodetic data—Global Navigation Satellite System and Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar—to obtain the surface velocity field, which we then simulate using an inverse modeling approach. We focus on the deformation around the geothermal power plants but need to model the regional tectonic and volcanic deformation as well, because the signals are overlapping. We find that plate motion and a deep contracting body can explain the broad scale signal in the area. Local deformation near the two power plants, Hellisheidi and Nesjavellir, can be explained by extraction of geothermal fluids. We estimate reservoirs extending from 0.6 to 3.0 km depth at Hellisheidi, and 1.0 to 3.0 km depth at Nesjavellir for observed pressure decrease rates of 0.25 MPa/yr and 0.1 MPa/yr, respectively. We find that the main cause for the subsidence in the geothermal area is the observed pressure drawdown

    Personhood, consciousness, and god : how to be a proper pantheist

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    © Springer Nature B.V. 2018In this paper I develop a theory of personhood which leaves open the possibility of construing the universe as a person. If successful, it removes one bar to endorsing pantheism. I do this by examining a rising school of thought on personhood, on which persons, or selves, are understood as identical to episodes of consciousness. Through a critique of this experiential approach to personhood, I develop a theory of self as constituted of qualitative mental contents, but where these contents are also capable of unconscious existence. On this theory, though we can be conscious of our selves, consciousness turns out to be inessential to personhood. This move, I then argue, provides resources for responding to the pantheist’s problem of God’s person.Peer reviewedFinal Accepted Versio

    Structural relaxation of E' gamma centers in amorphous silica

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    We report experimental evidence of the existence of two variants of the E' gamma centers induced in silica by gamma rays at room temperature. The two variants are distinguishable by the fine features of their line shapes in paramagnetic resonance spectra. These features suggest that the two E' gamma differ for their topology. We find a thermally induced interconversion between the centers with an activation energy of about 34 meV. Hints are also found for the existence of a structural configuration of minimum energy and of a metastable state.Comment: 4 pages, 2 figures, submitted to Phys. Rev. Let

    HV/HR-CMOS sensors for the ATLAS upgrade—concepts and test chip results

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    In order to extend its discovery potential, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) will have a major upgrade (Phase II Upgrade) scheduled for 2022. The LHC after the upgrade, called High-Luminosity LHC (HL-LHC), will operate at a nominal leveled instantaneous luminosity of 5× 1034 cm−2 s−1, more than twice the expected Phase I . The new Inner Tracker needs to cope with this extremely high luminosity. Therefore it requires higher granularity, reduced material budget and increased radiation hardness of all components. A new pixel detector based on High Voltage CMOS (HVCMOS) technology targeting the upgraded ATLAS pixel detector is under study. The main advantages of the HVCMOS technology are its potential for low material budget, use of possible cheaper interconnection technologies, reduced pixel size and lower cost with respect to traditional hybrid pixel detector. Several first prototypes were produced and characterized within ATLAS upgrade R&D effort, to explore the performance and radiation hardness of this technology. In this paper, an overview of the HVCMOS sensor concepts is given. Laboratory tests and irradiation tests of two technologies, HVCMOS AMS and HVCMOS GF, are also given
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