6,439 research outputs found

    DELPHES 3, A modular framework for fast simulation of a generic collider experiment

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    The version 3.0 of the DELPHES fast-simulation is presented. The goal of DELPHES is to allow the simulation of a multipurpose detector for phenomenological studies. The simulation includes a track propagation system embedded in a magnetic field, electromagnetic and hadron calorimeters, and a muon identification system. Physics objects that can be used for data analysis are then reconstructed from the simulated detector response. These include tracks and calorimeter deposits and high level objects such as isolated electrons, jets, taus, and missing energy. The new modular approach allows for greater flexibility in the design of the simulation and reconstruction sequence. New features such as the particle-flow reconstruction approach, crucial in the first years of the LHC, and pile-up simulation and mitigation, which is needed for the simulation of the LHC detectors in the near future, have also been implemented. The DELPHES framework is not meant to be used for advanced detector studies, for which more accurate tools are needed. Although some aspects of DELPHES are hadron collider specific, it is flexible enough to be adapted to the needs of electron-positron collider experiments.Comment: JHEP 1402 (2014

    Cluster of legionnaires’ disease in an Italian prison

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    Background: Legionella pneumophila (Lp) is the most common etiologic agent causing Legionnaires’ Disease (LD). Water systems offer the best growth conditions for Lp and support its spread by producing aerosols. From 2015 to 2017, the Regional Reference Laboratory of Clinical and Environmental Surveillance of Legionellosis of Palermo monitored the presence of Lp in nine prisons in Western Sicily. During this investigation, we compared Lp isolates from environmental samples in a prison located in Palermo with isolates from two prisoners in the same prison. Methods: We collected 93 water samples from nine Sicilian prisons and the bronchoalveolar lavages (BALs) of two prisoners considered cases of LD. These samples were processed following the procedures described in the Italian Guidelines for the Prevention and Control of Legionellosis of 2015. Then, genotyping was performed on 19 Lp colonies (17 from water samples and 2 from clinical samples) using the Sequence-Based Typing (SBT) method, according to European Study Group for Legionella Infections (ESGLI) protocols. Results: Lp serogroup (sg) 6 was the most prevalent serogroup isolated from the prisons analyzed (40%), followed by Lp sg 1 (16%). Most of all, in four penitentiary institutions, we detected a high concentration of Lp >104 Colony Forming Unit/Liter (CFU/L). The environmental molecular investigation found the following Sequence Types (STs) in Lp sg 6: ST 93, ST 292, ST 461, ST 728, ST 1317 and ST 1362, while most of the isolates in sg 1 belonged to ST 1. We also found a new ST that has since been assigned the number 2451 in the ESGLI-SBT database. From the several Lp sg 1 colonies isolated from the two BALs, we identified ST 2451. Conclusions: In this article, we described the results obtained from environmental and epidemiological investigations of Lp isolated from prisons in Western Sicily. Furthermore, we reported the first cluster of Legionnaires’ in an Italian prison and the molecular typing of Lp sg 1 from one prison’s water system and two BALs, identified the source of the contamination, and discovered a new ST

    Knowledge, attitudes and self-reported practices of food service staff in nursing homes and long-term care facilities

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    The aim of this study was to investigate knowledge, attitudes and practices of food service staff in nursing homes and long-term care facilities for the elderly in Sicily, Italy. Association with some demographic and work-related variables was also investigated. This survey provides information and outlines many complex questions concerning the basics of food hygiene. Education level, length of service in the employment and attending courses on food hygiene influenced the knowledge, attitudes and practices of food service staff. This study has evidenced the need for continuous training among food service staff regarding food safety in LTCF and nursing homes

    The microbiota of the bilio-pancreatic system: A cohort, STROBE-compliant study

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    Background: The gut microbiota play an essential role in protecting the host against pathogenic microorganisms by modulating immunity and regulating metabolic processes. In response to environmental factors, microbes can hugely alter their metabolism. These factors can substantially impact the host and have potential pathologic implications. Particularly pathogenic microorganisms colonizing pancreas and biliary tract tissues may be involved in chronic inflammation and cancer evolution. Purpose: To evaluate the effect of bile microbiota on survival in patients with pancreas and biliary tract disease (PBD). Patients and Methods: We investigated 152 Italian patients with cholelithiasis (CHL), cholangitis (CHA), cholangiocarcinoma (CCA), gallbladder carcinoma (GBC), pancreas head carcinoma (PHC), ampullary carcinoma (ACA), and chronic pancreatitis (CHP). Demographics, bile cultures, therapy, and survival rates were analyzed in cohorts (T1 death <6 months; T2 death <12 months; T3 death <18 months, T3S alive at 18 months). Results: The most common bacteria in T1 were E. coli, K. pneumoniae, andP. aeruginosa. In T2, the most common bacteria were E. coli and P. aeruginosa. InT3, there were no significant bacteria isolated, while in T3S the most common bacteria were like those found in T1. E. coli and K. pneumoniae were positive predictors of survival for PHC and ACA, respectively. E. coli, K. pneumoniae, andP. aeruginosa showed a high percentage of resistant bacteria to 3CGS, aminoglycosides class, and quinolone group especially at T1 and T2 in cancer patients. Conclusions: An unprecedented increase of E. coli in bile leads to a decrease in survival. We suggest that some strains isolated in bile samples may be considered within the group of risk factors in carcinogenesis and/or progression of hepato-biliary malignancy. A better understanding of bile microbiota in patients with PBD should lead to a multifaceted approach to rapidly detect and treat pathogens before patients enter the surgical setting in tandem with the implementation of the infection control policy

    Current and future trends in the laboratory diagnosis of sexually transmitted infections

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    Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) continue to exert a considerable public health and social burden globally, particularly for developing countries. Due to the high prevalence of asymptomatic infections and the limitations of symptom-based (syndromic) diagnosis, confirmation of infection using laboratory tools is essential to choose the most appropriate course of treatment and to screen at-risk groups. Numerous laboratory tests and platforms have been developed for gonorrhea, chlamydia, syphilis, trichomoniasis, genital mycoplasmas, herpesviruses, and human papillomavirus. Point-of-care testing is now a possibility, and microfluidic and high-throughput omics technologies promise to revolutionize the diagnosis of STIs. The scope of this paper is to provide an updated overview of the current laboratory diagnostic tools for these infections, highlighting their advantages, limitations, and point-of-care adaptability. The diagnostic applicability of the latest molecular and biochemical approaches is also discussed

    Towards portable muography with small-area, gas-tight glass Resistive Plate Chambers

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    Imaging techniques that use atmospheric muons, collectively named under the neologism "muography", have seen a tremendous growth in recent times, mainly due to their diverse range of applications. The most well-known ones include but are not limited to: volcanology, archaeology, civil engineering, nuclear reactor monitoring, nuclear waste characterization, underground mapping, etc. These methods are based on the attenuation or deviation of muons to image large and/or dense objects where conventional techniques cannot work or their use becomes challenging. In this context, we have constructed a muography telescope based on "mini glass-RPC planes" following a design similar to the glass-RPC detectors developed by the CALICE Collaboration and used by the TOMUVOL experiment in the context of volcano radiography, but with smaller active area (16 Ă—\times 16 cm2^{2}). The compact size makes it an attractive choice with respect to other detectors previously employed for imaging on similar scales. An important innovation in this design is that the detectors are sealed. This makes the detector more portable and solves the usual safety and logistic issues for gas detectors operated underground and/or inside small rooms. This paper provides an overview on our guiding principles, the detector development and our operational experiences. Drawing on the lessons learnt from the first prototype, we also discuss our future direction for an improved second prototype, focusing primarily on a recently adopted serigraphy technique for the resistive coating of the glass plates.Comment: 8 pages, 7 figures, XV Workshop on Resistive Plate Chambers and Related Detectors (RPC2020

    New long-lived particle searches in heavy-ion collisions at the LHC

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    We show that heavy-ion collisions at the LHC provide a promising environment to search for signatures with displaced vertices in well-motivated new physics scenarios. Compared to proton collisions, they offer several advantages: (i) the number of parton level interactions per collision is larger, (ii) there is no pileup, (iii) the lower instantaneous luminosity compared to proton collisions allows one to operate the LHC experiments with very loose triggers, and (iv) there are new production mechanisms that are absent in proton collisions We focus on the third point and show that the modification of the triggers alone can increase the number of observable events by orders of magnitude if the long-lived particles are predominantly produced with low transverse momentum. Our results show that collisions of ions lighter than lead are well motivated from the viewpoint of searches for new physics. We illustrate this for the example of heavy neutrinos in the Neutrino Minimal Standard Model

    Cocirculation of Hajj and non-Hajj strains among serogroup W meningococci in Italy, 2000 to 2016

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    In Italy, B and C are the predominant serogroups among meningococci causing invasive diseases. Nevertheless, in the period from 2013 to 2016, an increase in serogroup W Neisseria meningitidis (MenW) was observed. This study intends to define the main characteristics of 63 MenW isolates responsible of invasive meningococcal disease (IMD) in Italy from 2000 to 2016. We performed whole genome sequencing on bacterial isolates or single gene sequencing on culturenegative samples to evaluate molecular heterogeneity. Our main finding was the cocirculation of the Hajj and the South American sublineages belonging to MenW/ clonal complex (cc)11, which gradually surpassed the MenW/cc22 in Italy. All MenW/cc11 isolates were fully susceptible to cefotaxime, ceftriaxone, ciprofloxacin, penicillin G and rifampicin. We identified the fulllength NadA protein variant 2/3, present in all the MenW/cc11. We also identified the fHbp variant 1, which we found exclusively in the MenW/cc11/Hajj sublineage. Concern about the epidemic potential of MenW/cc11 has increased worldwide since the year 2000. Continued surveillance, supported by genomic characterisation, allows high-resolution tracking of pathogen dissemination and the detection of epidemicassociated strains

    Modeling sand slides by a mechanics-based degenerate parabolic equation

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    Avalanching plays a crucial role in granular materials dynamics, in particular in the evolution of the shape of the leeward side of sand dunes. This paper presents a physically-based mathematical model capable of reproducing the kinematic evolution of the surface of sand piles and to obtain eventually the stationary configurations, in the presence of external sources as well. Simulation results with different boundary conditions and geometries are reported in order to show the high flexibility of the model. The model is also validated by means of comparison with the experimental results of different authors
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