234 research outputs found

    Controlling the ellipticity of attosecond pulses produced by laser irradiation of overdense plasmas

    Full text link
    The interaction of high-intensity laser pulses and solid targets provides a promising way to create compact, tunable and bright XUV attosecond sources that can become a unique tool for a variety of applications. However, it is important to control the polarization state of this XUV radiation, and to do so in the most efficient regime of generation. Using the relativistic electronic spring (RES) model and particle-in-cell (PIC) simulations, we show that the polarization state of the generated attosecond pulses can be tuned in a wide range of parameters by adjusting the polarization and angle of incidence of the laser radiation. In particular, we demonstrate the possibility of producing circularly polarized attosecond pulses in a wide variety of setups.Comment: 6 pages, 3 figure

    Virtual Reality as a Tool for Evaluation of Repetitive Rhythmic Movements in the Elderly and Parkinson's Disease Patients

    Get PDF
    This work presents an immersive Virtual Reality (VR) system to evaluate, and potentially treat, the alterations in rhythmic hand movements seen in Parkinson's disease (PD) and the elderly (EC), by comparison with healthy young controls (YC). The system integrates the subjects into a VR environment by means of a Head Mounted Display, such that subjects perceive themselves in a virtual world consisting of a table within a room. In this experiment, subjects are presented in 1st person perspective, so that the avatar reproduces finger tapping movements performed by the subjects. The task, known as the finger tapping test (FT), was performed by all three subject groups, PD, EC and YC. FT was carried out by each subject on two different days (sessions), one week apart. In each FT session all subjects performed FT in the real world (FTREAL) and in the VR (FTVR); each mode was repeated three times in randomized order. During FT both the tapping frequency and the coefficient of variation of inter-tap interval were registered. FTVR was a valid test to detect differences in rhythm formation between the three groups. Intra-class correlation coefficients (ICC) and mean difference between days for FTVR (for each group) showed reliable results. Finally, the analysis of ICC and mean difference between FTVR vs FTREAL, for each variable and group, also showed high reliability. This shows that FT evaluation in VR environments is valid as real world alternative, as VR evaluation did not distort movement execution and detects alteration in rhythm formation. These results support the use of VR as a promising tool to study alterations and the control of movement in different subject groups in unusual environments, such as during fMRI or other imaging studies

    Diapause as escape strategy to exposure to toxicants: response of Brachionus calyciforus to arsenic

    Get PDF
    Invertebrate organisms commonly respond to environmental fluctuation by entering diapause. Production of diapause in monogonont rotifers involves a previous switch from asexual to partial sexual reproduction. Although zooplankton have been used in ecotoxicological assays, often their true vulnerability to toxicants is underestimated by not incorporating the sexual phase. We experimentally analyzed traits involved in sexual reproduction and diapause in the cyclically parthenogenetic freshwater rotifer, Brachionus calyciflorus, exposed to arsenic, a metalloid naturally found in high concentrations in desert zones, focusing on the effectiveness of diapause as an escape response in the face of an adverse condition. Addition of sublethal concentrations of arsenic modified the pattern of diapause observed in the rotifer: investment in diapause with arsenic addition peaked earlier and higher than in non-toxicant conditions, which suggests that sexual investment could be enhanced in highly stressed environmental conditions by increased responsiveness to stimulation. Nevertheless, eggs produced in large amount with arsenic, were mostly low quality, and healthy-looking eggs had lower hatching success, therefore it is unclear whether this pattern is optimum in an environment with arsenic, or if rather arsenic presence in water bodies disturbs the optimal allocation of offspring entering diapause. We observed high accumulation of arsenic in organisms exposed to constant concentration after several generations, which suggests that arsenic may be accumulated transgenerationally. The sexual phase in rotifers may be more sensitive to environmental conditions than the asexual one, therefore diapause attributes should be considered in ecotoxicological assessment because of its ecological and evolutionary implications on lakes biodiversity

    Choice of the initial antiretroviral treatment for HIV-positive individuals in the era of integrase inhibitors

    Get PDF
    BACKGROUND: We aimed to describe the most frequently prescribed initial antiretroviral therapy (ART) regimens in recent years in HIV-positive persons in the Cohort of the Spanish HIV/AIDS Research Network (CoRIS) and to investigate factors associated with the choice of each regimen. METHODS: We analyzed initial ART regimens prescribed in adults participating in CoRIS from 2014 to 2017. Only regimens prescribed in >5% of patients were considered. We used multivariable multinomial regression to estimate Relative Risk Ratios (RRRs) for the association between sociodemographic and clinical characteristics and the choice of the initial regimen. RESULTS: Among 2874 participants, abacavir(ABC)/lamivudine(3TC)/dolutegavir(DTG) was the most frequently prescribed regimen (32.1%), followed by tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF)/emtricitabine (FTC)/elvitegravir(EVG)/cobicistat(COBI) (14.9%), TDF/FTC/rilpivirine (RPV) (14.0%), tenofovir alafenamide (TAF)/FTC/EVG/COBI (13.7%), TDF/FTC+DTG (10.0%), TDF/FTC+darunavir/ritonavir or darunavir/cobicistat (bDRV) (9.8%) and TDF/FTC+raltegravir (RAL) (5.6%). Compared with ABC/3TC/DTG, starting TDF/FTC/RPV was less likely in patients with CD4100.000 copies/mL. TDF/FTC+DTG was more frequent in those with CD4100.000 copies/mL. TDF/FTC+RAL and TDF/FTC+bDRV were also more frequent among patients with CD4<200 cells//muL and with transmission categories other than men who have sex with men. Compared with ABC/3TC/DTG, the prescription of other initial ART regimens decreased from 2014-2015 to 2016-2017 with the exception of TDF/FTC+DTG. Differences in the choice of the initial ART regimen were observed by hospitals' location. CONCLUSIONS: The choice of initial ART regimens is consistent with Spanish guidelines' recommendations, but is also clearly influenced by physician's perception based on patient's clinical and sociodemographic variables and by the prescribing hospital location

    Why Are Outcomes Different for Registry Patients Enrolled Prospectively and Retrospectively? Insights from the Global Anticoagulant Registry in the FIELD-Atrial Fibrillation (GARFIELD-AF).

    Get PDF
    Background: Retrospective and prospective observational studies are designed to reflect real-world evidence on clinical practice, but can yield conflicting results. The GARFIELD-AF Registry includes both methods of enrolment and allows analysis of differences in patient characteristics and outcomes that may result. Methods and Results: Patients with atrial fibrillation (AF) and ≄1 risk factor for stroke at diagnosis of AF were recruited either retrospectively (n = 5069) or prospectively (n = 5501) from 19 countries and then followed prospectively. The retrospectively enrolled cohort comprised patients with established AF (for a least 6, and up to 24 months before enrolment), who were identified retrospectively (and baseline and partial follow-up data were collected from the emedical records) and then followed prospectively between 0-18 months (such that the total time of follow-up was 24 months; data collection Dec-2009 and Oct-2010). In the prospectively enrolled cohort, patients with newly diagnosed AF (≀6 weeks after diagnosis) were recruited between Mar-2010 and Oct-2011 and were followed for 24 months after enrolment. Differences between the cohorts were observed in clinical characteristics, including type of AF, stroke prevention strategies, and event rates. More patients in the retrospectively identified cohort received vitamin K antagonists (62.1% vs. 53.2%) and fewer received non-vitamin K oral anticoagulants (1.8% vs . 4.2%). All-cause mortality rates per 100 person-years during the prospective follow-up (starting the first study visit up to 1 year) were significantly lower in the retrospective than prospectively identified cohort (3.04 [95% CI 2.51 to 3.67] vs . 4.05 [95% CI 3.53 to 4.63]; p = 0.016). Conclusions: Interpretations of data from registries that aim to evaluate the characteristics and outcomes of patients with AF must take account of differences in registry design and the impact of recall bias and survivorship bias that is incurred with retrospective enrolment. Clinical Trial Registration: - URL: http://www.clinicaltrials.gov . Unique identifier for GARFIELD-AF (NCT01090362)

    Improved risk stratification of patients with atrial fibrillation: an integrated GARFIELD-AF tool for the prediction of mortality, stroke and bleed in patients with and without anticoagulation.