5,627 research outputs found

    The Cosmic Ray Lepton Puzzle

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    Recent measurements of cosmic ray electrons and positrons by PAMELA, ATIC, Fermi and HESS have revealed interesting excesses and features in the GeV-TeV range. Many possible explanations have been suggested, invoking one or more nearby primary sources such as pulsars and supernova remnants, or dark matter. Based on the output of the TANGO in PARIS --Testing Astroparticle with the New GeV/TeV Observations in Positrons And electRons : Identifying the Sources-- workshop held in Paris in May 2009, we review here the latest experimental results and we discuss some virtues and drawbacks of the many theoretical interpretations proposed so far.Comment: 6 pages, 3 figures, Extended version of the proceeding of the annual meeting of the French Astronomical & Astrophysical Society (sf2a

    MEC: A Mesoscale events classifier for oceanographic imagery

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    The observation of the sea through remote sensing technologies plays a fundamentalan role in understanding the state of health of marine fauna species and their behaviour. Mesoscale phenomena, such as upwelling, countercurrents, and filaments, are essential processes to be analysed because their occurrence involves, among other things, variations in the density of nutrients, which, in turn, influence the biological parameters of the habitat. Indeed, there is a connection between the biogeochemical and physical processes that occur within a biological system and the variations observed in its faunal populations. This paper concerns the proposal of an automatic classification system, namely the Mesoscale Events Classifier, dedicated to the recognition of marine mesoscale events. The proposed system is devoted to the study of these phenomena through the analysis of sea surface temperature images captured by satellite missions, such as EUMETSAT’s Metop and NASA’s Earth Observing System programmes. The classification of these images is obtained through (i) a preprocessing stage with the goal to provide a simultaneous representation of the spatial and temporal properties of the data and enhance the salient features of the sought phenomena, (ii) the extraction of temporal and spatial characteristics from the data and, finally, (iii) the application of a set of rules to discriminate between different observed scenarios. The results presented in this work were obtained by applying the proposed approach to images acquired in the southwestern region of the Iberian peninsula.info:eu-repo/semantics/publishedVersio

    Case report: long-acting oral cariprazine

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    Introduction: Cariprazine is a third-generation antipsychotic, approved for the treatment of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder and used off-label for schizoaffective disorder and treatment-resistant depression. Cariprazine is a partial agonist at dopamine receptors D2 and D3 and serotonin receptor 5HT1A and an antagonist at serotonin receptors 5HT2B and 5HT2A. It is metabolized by CYP3A4 in desmetyl-cariprazine and didesmethyl-cariprazine, both active metabolites with a half-life of 1-2 days and 2-3 weeks, respectively. Case Report: Here we show the cases of 3 outpatients diagnosed with bipolar I disorder (two patients) and schizoaffective disorder (one patients) and characterized by low adherence to treatment, satisfactory cognitive and personal functioning and average disease severity to whom we administered cariprazine as a monotherapy, on a two-times a week schedule (i.e., every 72-96 h). We evaluated response to treatment and disease remission according to conventional definitions, using rating scales BPRS, PANSS and BDI-II. Two-times a week treatment was set either after a disease relapse (one patient), after a sustained remission obtained with daily administration of cariprazine (one patient) or since our first evaluation (one patient). After 4 weeks of treatment all three patients satisfied criteria for response to treatment and remission, a result that was sustained for 8 (in one patients) and 12 months (in other two patients) and still ongoing. Discussion: Reported results support our hypothesis that long half-lives of cariprazine and its metabolites provide an adequate therapeutic response with a two-times a week administration. In selected patients, cariprazine administered as a "oral long-acting" seems effective in treating acute episodes of illness and in sustaining remission, combining advantages of oral and long-acting injectable antipsychotics concerning therapeutic alliance

    Sheep brain atlas creation. Diffusion tensor imaging and Scanning electron microscope in sheep brain analysis

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    IntroductionsAim of EDEN 2020 project is the development of a steerable catheter for CED system in glioblastoma therapy. The VET group is involved in realization and validation of the proper animal model.For surgical planning purpose a Diffusion Tensor Imaging (DTI) of white matter tracts in the sheep is necessary to identify the target points useful for the catheter introduction.The analysis of the sheep brain under a Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) is required to understand any alterations due to the catheter introduction and to fluids injection during CED administration. Materials and methodsAnimals were treated in accordance with the European Communities Council directive (86/609/EEC), to the laws and regulations on animal welfare enclosed in D.L.G.S. 26/2014A total of five 70 kg female, one year old, sheep were used for the study.All animals, under general anesthesia, underwent to Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) acquisition. MRI scanner used was Philips Ingenia 1.5 Tesla system.Once the DTI imaging were acquired the animals were euthanased, sheep brain was collected and samples of white matter tracts obtained with disposable biopsy punches of 1.5-2 mm of diameter.The samples were fixed, stained in Osmium tetroxide (OsO4) and then embedded with two different protocols (cold curing vs thermal curing) in resin for the Focused Ion Beam (FIB) SEM analyses. Results and discussionAll the DTI images were uploaded to TrackVis software and major white matter fiber tracts analysed. Corticospinal tract, visual radiation, fornix and fronto-occipital fasciculus were identified.Corticospinal tract was identified as major white matter tract in sheep brain and useful as target area for the research aims.For the SEM analysis the thermal protocol was recognised as better curing methods for the research purpose than cold curing one. ConclusionThe data acquired in this study are still submitted to analysis. AcknowledgmentThe project has received funding from the European Union’s EU Research and Innovation programme Horizon 2020 (no 688279)

    Urine Parameters in Patients with COVID-19 Infection

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    ABSTRACT A urine test permits the measure of several urinary markers. This is a non-invasive method for early monitoring of potential kidney damage. In COVID-19 patients, alterations of urinary markers were observed. This review aims to evaluate the utility of urinalysis in predicting the severity of COVID-19. A total of 68 articles obtained from PubMed studies reported that (i) the severity of disease was related to haematuria and proteinuria and that (ii) typical alterations of the urinary sediment were noticed in COVID-19-associated AKI patients. This review emphasizes that urinalysis and microscopic examination support clinicians in diagnosing and predicting COVID-19 severity

    SARS-CoV-2 infection serology: a useful tool to overcome lockdown?

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    The outbreak of 2019 novel coronavirus disease (Covid-19) caused by SARS-CoV-2 has spread rapidly, inducing a progressive growth in infected patients number. Social isolation (lockdown) has been assessed to prevent and control virus diffusion, leading to a worldwide financial and political crisis. Currently, SARS-CoV-2 RNA detection in nasopharyngeal swab takes place by real-time PCR (RT-qPCR). However, molecular tests can give some false-negative results. In this context, serological assays can be useful to detect IgG/IgM antibodies, to assess the degree of immunization, to trace the contacts, and to support the decision to re-admit people at work. A lot of serological diagnostic kits have been proposed on the market but validation studies have not been published for many of them. The aim of our work was to compare and to evaluate different assays analytical performances (two different immunochromatographic cards, an immunofluorescence chromatographic card, and a chemiluminescence-automated immunoassay) on 43 positive samples with RT-qPCR-confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection and 40 negative control subjects. Our data display excellent IgG/IgM specificities for all the immunocromatographic card tests (100% IgG and 100% IgM) and for the chemiluminescence-automated assay (100% IgG and 94% IgM); IgG/IgM sensitivities are moderately lower for all methods, probably due to the assay viral antigen's nature and/or to the detection time of nasopharyngeal swab RT-qPCR, with respect to symptoms onset. Given that sensitivities (around 94% and 84% for IgG and IgM, respectively) implicate false-negative cases and given the lack of effective vaccines or treatments, the only currently available procedure to reduce SARS-CoV-2 transmission is to identify and isolate persons who are contagious. For this reason, we would like to submit a flowchart in which serological tests, integrated with nasopharyngeal swab RT-qPCR, are included to help social and work activities implementation after the pandemic acute phase and to overcome lockdown

    An experimental and modeling combined approach in preparative Hydrophobic Interaction Chromatography

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    Chromatography is a technique widely used in the purification of biopharmaceuticals, and gener-ally consists of several chromatographic steps. In this work, Hydrophobic Interaction Chroma-tography (HIC) is investigated as a polishing step for the purification of therapeutic proteins. Ad-sorption mechanisms in hydrophobic interaction chromatography are still not completely clear and a limited amount of published data is available. In addition to new data on adsorption isotherms for some proteins (obtained both by high-throughput and frontal analysis method), and a comparison of different models proposed in the literature, two different approaches are compared in this work to investigate HIC. The predictive approach exploits an in-house code that simulates the behavior of the component in the column using the model parameters found from the fitting of experimental data. The estimation approach, on the other hand, exploits commercial software in which the model parameters are found by the fitting of a few experimental chromatograms. The two approaches are validated on some bind-elute runs: the predictive approach is very informative, but the experi-mental effort needed is high; the estimation approach is more effective, but the knowledge gained is lower. The second approach is also applied to an in-development industrial purification process and successfully resulted in predicting the behavior of the system, allowing for optimization with a reduction in the time and amount of sample needed

    Low Vitamin D Status at Admission as a Risk Factor for Poor Survival in Hospitalized Patients With COVID-19: An Italian Retrospective Study

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    Preliminary findings suggest a relationship between lower serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D] levels and incidence and severity of COVID-19. The aim of this study was to evaluate the relationship between vitamin D status at admission and different markers of inflammation, coagulation, and sepsis in hospitalized patients with COVID-19
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