22 research outputs found

    Uranium and Associated Heavy Metals in Ovis aries in a Mining Impacted Area in Northwestern New Mexico.

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    The objective of this study was to determine uranium (U) and other heavy metal (HM) concentrations (As, Cd, Pb, Mo, and Se) in tissue samples collected from sheep (Ovis aries), the primary meat staple on the Navajo reservation in northwestern New Mexico. The study setting was a prime target of U mining, where more than 1100 unreclaimed abandoned U mines and structures remain. The forage and water sources for the sheep in this study were located within 3.2 km of abandoned U mines and structures. Tissue samples from sheep (n = 3), their local forage grasses (n = 24), soil (n = 24), and drinking water (n = 14) sources were collected. The samples were analyzed using Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry. Results: In general, HMs concentrated more in the roots of forage compared to the above ground parts. The sheep forage samples fell below the National Research Council maximum tolerable concentration (5 mg/kg). The bioaccumulation factor ratio was >1 in several forage samples, ranging from 1.12 to 16.86 for Mo, Cd, and Se. The study findings showed that the concentrations of HMs were greatest in the liver and kidneys. Of the calculated human intake, Se Reference Dietary Intake and Mo Recommended Dietary Allowance were exceeded, but the tolerable upper limits for both were not exceeded. Food intake recommendations informed by research are needed for individuals especially those that may be more sensitive to HMs. Further study with larger sample sizes is needed to explore other impacted communities across the reservation

    Safer Sexual Practices and HIV Screening Behavior among Rural California American Indians

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    This paper reports on safer sexual practices and HIV screening behavior among rural California American Indians. Thirteen Indian health clinic registries formed the random household survey sampling frame (N=457). Measures included socio-demographics, safer sexual practices, HIV testing, high-risk behaviors, perception of wellness, general health status, neglect, physical and sexual abuse history. Statistical tests included chi-square and Fisher’s exact tests, as well as multiple logistic regression analysis. Respondents who practiced safer sex were younger, not married, reported lower annual income, changed sexual behavior in the last 12 months, were not in a monogamous relationship, and had a higher perception of wellness. Those who were tested for HIV were younger, had at least a high school education, consumed alcohol, had significantly higher suicide ideation and attempts, changed their sexual behavior in the last 12 months, and reported a history of sexual abuse as a child and adult. Very little is known about HIV prevention and screening behaviors in rural American Indian populations. Identifying predictors of unsafe sexual practices and non-HIV testing tendencies help to plan for measures to protect the population from this devastating disease. We make recommendations for implementing HIV prevention education and screenings at American Indian clinics

    The James Webb Space Telescope Mission

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    Twenty-six years ago a small committee report, building on earlier studies, expounded a compelling and poetic vision for the future of astronomy, calling for an infrared-optimized space telescope with an aperture of at least 4m4m. With the support of their governments in the US, Europe, and Canada, 20,000 people realized that vision as the 6.5m6.5m James Webb Space Telescope. A generation of astronomers will celebrate their accomplishments for the life of the mission, potentially as long as 20 years, and beyond. This report and the scientific discoveries that follow are extended thank-you notes to the 20,000 team members. The telescope is working perfectly, with much better image quality than expected. In this and accompanying papers, we give a brief history, describe the observatory, outline its objectives and current observing program, and discuss the inventions and people who made it possible. We cite detailed reports on the design and the measured performance on orbit.Comment: Accepted by PASP for the special issue on The James Webb Space Telescope Overview, 29 pages, 4 figure

    31st Annual Meeting and Associated Programs of the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC 2016) : part two

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    Background The immunological escape of tumors represents one of the main ob- stacles to the treatment of malignancies. The blockade of PD-1 or CTLA-4 receptors represented a milestone in the history of immunotherapy. However, immune checkpoint inhibitors seem to be effective in specific cohorts of patients. It has been proposed that their efficacy relies on the presence of an immunological response. Thus, we hypothesized that disruption of the PD-L1/PD-1 axis would synergize with our oncolytic vaccine platform PeptiCRAd. Methods We used murine B16OVA in vivo tumor models and flow cytometry analysis to investigate the immunological background. Results First, we found that high-burden B16OVA tumors were refractory to combination immunotherapy. However, with a more aggressive schedule, tumors with a lower burden were more susceptible to the combination of PeptiCRAd and PD-L1 blockade. The therapy signifi- cantly increased the median survival of mice (Fig. 7). Interestingly, the reduced growth of contralaterally injected B16F10 cells sug- gested the presence of a long lasting immunological memory also against non-targeted antigens. Concerning the functional state of tumor infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs), we found that all the immune therapies would enhance the percentage of activated (PD-1pos TIM- 3neg) T lymphocytes and reduce the amount of exhausted (PD-1pos TIM-3pos) cells compared to placebo. As expected, we found that PeptiCRAd monotherapy could increase the number of antigen spe- cific CD8+ T cells compared to other treatments. However, only the combination with PD-L1 blockade could significantly increase the ra- tio between activated and exhausted pentamer positive cells (p= 0.0058), suggesting that by disrupting the PD-1/PD-L1 axis we could decrease the amount of dysfunctional antigen specific T cells. We ob- served that the anatomical location deeply influenced the state of CD4+ and CD8+ T lymphocytes. In fact, TIM-3 expression was in- creased by 2 fold on TILs compared to splenic and lymphoid T cells. In the CD8+ compartment, the expression of PD-1 on the surface seemed to be restricted to the tumor micro-environment, while CD4 + T cells had a high expression of PD-1 also in lymphoid organs. Interestingly, we found that the levels of PD-1 were significantly higher on CD8+ T cells than on CD4+ T cells into the tumor micro- environment (p < 0.0001). Conclusions In conclusion, we demonstrated that the efficacy of immune check- point inhibitors might be strongly enhanced by their combination with cancer vaccines. PeptiCRAd was able to increase the number of antigen-specific T cells and PD-L1 blockade prevented their exhaus- tion, resulting in long-lasting immunological memory and increased median survival

    Predictors of Wellness and American Indians

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    Occurrence and Risk of Metal(loid)s in Thelesperma megapotamicum Tea Plant.

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    This study reports on the harvesting, ingestion, and contamination of American Indian tea Thelesperma megapotamicum grown on the Navajo Reservation in New Mexico. Uranium (U) and co-metal(loid)s (As, Cd, Cs, Mo, Pb, Se, Th, and V) have contaminated local soil and plants. Tea plants were gathered for analysis near U mining impacted areas. The study collected samples of wild tea plants (n = 14), roots (n = 14), and soil (n = 12) that were analyzed with inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. Tea harvesting activities, behavior, and ingestion information were collected via questionnaires. Harvesting took place in community fields and near roadways. Results indicate edible foliage concentration levels for Cd exceeded the World Health Organization (WHO) raw medicinal plant permissible level guidelines. Tea samples collected near high traffic areas had significantly greater Cd and Mo concentrations than those collected near low traffic areas (p &lt; 0.001). Tea sample metal(loid) concentration levels ranged from 0.019-7.916 mg/kg. When compared to established food guidelines including the WHO provisional tolerable weekly intake (PTWI), reference dietary intake, recommended dietary allowance, and the tolerable upper limit (UL), Cd exceeded the WHO guidelines but none exceeded the PTWI nor the UL. These findings warrant improved standardization and establishment of universal guidelines for metal(loid) intake in food

    Uranium and Associated Heavy Metals in Ovis aries in a Mining Impacted Area in Northwestern New Mexico

    No full text
    The objective of this study was to determine uranium (U) and other heavy metal (HM) concentrations (As, Cd, Pb, Mo, and Se) in tissue samples collected from sheep (Ovis aries), the primary meat staple on the Navajo reservation in northwestern New Mexico. The study setting was a prime target of U mining, where more than 1100 unreclaimed abandoned U mines and structures remain. The forage and water sources for the sheep in this study were located within 3.2 km of abandoned U mines and structures. Tissue samples from sheep (n = 3), their local forage grasses (n = 24), soil (n = 24), and drinking water (n = 14) sources were collected. The samples were analyzed using Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry. Results: In general, HMs concentrated more in the roots of forage compared to the above ground parts. The sheep forage samples fell below the National Research Council maximum tolerable concentration (5 mg/kg). The bioaccumulation factor ratio was &gt;1 in several forage samples, ranging from 1.12 to 16.86 for Mo, Cd, and Se. The study findings showed that the concentrations of HMs were greatest in the liver and kidneys. Of the calculated human intake, Se Reference Dietary Intake and Mo Recommended Dietary Allowance were exceeded, but the tolerable upper limits for both were not exceeded. Food intake recommendations informed by research are needed for individuals especially those that may be more sensitive to HMs. Further study with larger sample sizes is needed to explore other impacted communities across the reservation
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