105 research outputs found

    Mid-infrared Fourier-domain optical coherence tomography with a pyroelectric linear array

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    Optical technology in the mid-infrared wavelength range is currently a rapidly developing field initiated by the availability of novel high-power and spatially coherent sources. Non-destructive testing techniques based on these sources are very promising for industrial and medical applications. However, there are still many engineering problems due to the technical challenges and high prices of the optical elements suitable for the mid-infrared region. In this paper, we report the development and performances of the first mid-infrared Fourier-domain optical coherence tomography based on a supercontinuum source and low-cost pyroelectric detector. The system is designed to operate in the spectral region around 4?m. Experimental results are demonstrated for detections of embedded microstructures in ceramic materials and subsurface oil paint layers

    Effect of oral beta-blocker on short and long-term mortality in patients with acute respiratory failure: results from the BASEL-II-ICU study

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    Acute respiratory failure (ARF) is responsible for about one-third of intensive care unit (ICU) admissions and is associated with adverse outcomes. Predictors of short- and long-term outcomes in unselected ICU-patients with ARF are ill-defined. The purpose of this analysis was to determine predictors of in-hospital and one-year mortality and assess the effects of oral beta-blockers in unselected ICU patients with ARF included in the BASEL-II-ICU study. The BASEL II-ICU study was a prospective, multicenter, randomized, single-blinded, controlled trial of 314 (mean age 70 (62 to 79) years) ICU patients with ARF evaluating impact of a B-type natriuretic peptide- (BNP) guided management strategy on short-term outcomes. In-hospital mortality was 16% (51 patients) and one-year mortality 41% (128 patients). Multivariate analysis assessed that oral beta-blockers at admission were associated with a lower risk of both in-hospital (HR 0.33 (0.14 to 0.74) P = 0.007) and one-year mortality (HR 0.29 (0.16 to 0.51) P = 0.0003). Kaplan-Meier analysis confirmed the lower mortality in ARF patients when admitted with oral beta-blocker and further shows that the beneficial effect of oral beta-blockers at admission holds true in the two subgroups of patients with ARF related to cardiac or non-cardiac causes. Kaplan-Meier analysis also shows that administration of oral beta-blockers before hospital discharge gives striking additional beneficial effects on one-year mortality. Established beta-blocker therapy appears to be associated with a reduced mortality in ICU patients with acute respiratory failure. Cessation of established therapy appears to be hazardous. Initiation of therapy prior to discharge appears to confer benefit. This finding was seen regardless of the cardiac or non-cardiac etiology of respiratory failure. ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT00130559

    Position paper on the use of mandibular advancement devices in adults with sleep-related breathing disorders: A position paper of the German Society of Dental Sleep Medicine (Deutsche Gesellschaft Zahnaerztliche Schlafmedizin, DGZS)

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    Custom-made mandibular advancement devices are an effective treatment option for snoring, upper airway resistance syndrome, and obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Evidence-based data indicates their efficacy, and international sleep societies recommend oral appliance (OA) therapy for patients with sleep-related breathing disorders. The following position paper by the German Society of Dental Sleep Medicine (DGZS) is to guide the interdisciplinary team (sleep physician and sleep disorder dentist) in detail when to prescribe oral appliances. This position paper supports the responsible use of OA as an effective treatment option for patients with sleep-related breathing disorders. The paper advises of proper indication regarding OSA severity, body mass index (BMI), and dentition. It emphasizes the interdisciplinary approach of oral appliance therapy and suggests treatment under the guidance of dentists trained in dental sleep medicine

    Biology of a widespread uncultivated archaeon that contributes to carbon fixation in the subsurface

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    Subsurface microbial life contributes significantly to biogeochemical cycling, yet it remains largely uncharacterized, especially its archaeal members. This 'microbial dark matter' has been explored by recent studies that were, however, mostly based on DNA sequence information only. Here, we use diverse techniques including ultrastuctural analyses to link genomics to biology for the SM1 Euryarchaeon lineage, an uncultivated group of subsurface archaea. Phylogenomic analyses reveal this lineage to belong to a widespread group of archaea that we propose to classify as a new euryarchaeal order ('Candidatus Altiarchaeales'). The representative, double-membraned species 'Candidatus Altiarchaeum hamiconexum' has an autotrophic metabolism that uses a not-yet-reported Factor(420)-free reductive acetyl-CoA pathway, confirmed by stable carbon isotopic measurements of archaeal lipids. Our results indicate that this lineage has evolved specific metabolic and structural features like nano-grappling hooks empowering this widely distributed archaeon to predominate anaerobic groundwater, where it may represent an important carbon dioxide sink

    Intravenously Administered Alphavirus Vector VA7 Eradicates Orthotopic Human Glioma Xenografts in Nude Mice

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    VA7 is a neurotropic alphavirus vector based on an attenuated strain of Semliki Forest virus. We have previously shown that VA7 exhibits oncolytic activity against human melanoma xenografts in immunodeficient mice. The purpose of this study was to determine if intravenously administered VA7 would be effective against human glioma.In vitro, U87, U251, and A172 human glioma cells were infected and killed by VA7-EGFP. In vivo, antiglioma activity of VA7 was tested in Balb/c nude mice using U87 cells stably expressing firefly luciferase in subcutaneous and orthotopic tumor models. Intravenously administered VA7-EGFP completely eradicated 100% of small and 50% of large subcutaneous U87Fluc tumors. A single intravenous injection of either VA7-EGFP or VA7 expressing Renilla luciferase (VA7-Rluc) into mice bearing orthotopic U87Fluc tumors caused a complete quenching of intracranial firefly bioluminescence and long-term survival in total 16 of 17 animals. In tumor-bearing mice injected with VA7-Rluc, transient intracranial and peripheral Renilla bioluminescence was observed. Virus was well tolerated and no damage to heart, liver, spleen, or brain was observed upon pathological assessment at three and ninety days post injection, despite detectable virus titers in these organs during the earlier time point.VA7 vector is apathogenic and can enter and destroy brain tumors in nude mice when administered systemically. This study warrants further elucidation of the mechanism of tumor destruction and attenuation of the VA7 virus

    Predation on an Upper Trophic Marine Predator, the Steller Sea Lion: Evaluating High Juvenile Mortality in a Density Dependent Conceptual Framework

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    The endangered western stock of the Steller sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus) – the largest of the eared seals – has declined by 80% from population levels encountered four decades ago. Current overall trends from the Gulf of Alaska to the Aleutian Islands appear neutral with strong regional heterogeneities. A published inferential model has been used to hypothesize a continuous decline in natality and depressed juvenile survival during the height of the decline in the mid-late 1980's, followed by the recent recovery of juvenile survival to pre-decline rates. However, these hypotheses have not been tested by direct means, and causes underlying past and present population trajectories remain unresolved and controversial. We determined post-weaning juvenile survival and causes of mortality using data received post-mortem via satellite from telemetry transmitters implanted into 36 juvenile Steller sea lions from 2005 through 2011. Data show high post-weaning mortality by predation in the eastern Gulf of Alaska region. To evaluate the impact of such high levels of predation, we developed a conceptual framework to integrate density dependent with density independent effects on vital rates and population trajectories. Our data and model do not support the hypothesized recent recovery of juvenile survival rates and reduced natality. Instead, our data demonstrate continued low juvenile survival in the Prince William Sound and Kenai Fjords region of the Gulf of Alaska. Our results on contemporary predation rates combined with the density dependent conceptual framework suggest predation on juvenile sea lions as the largest impediment to recovery of the species in the eastern Gulf of Alaska region. The framework also highlights the necessity for demographic models based on age-structured census data to incorporate the differential impact of predation on multiple vital rates