8,880 research outputs found

    On a possible EPR experiment with Bd0Bd0ˉB^{0}_{d}\bar{B^{0}_{d}} pairs

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    A very general local realistic theory of single Bd0B^{0}_{d} mesons and of correlated Bd0Bd0ˉB^{0}_{d}\bar{B^{0}_{d}} pairs is formulated. If these pairs are produced in the Υ(4S)\Upsilon (4S) decay, the local realistic asymmetry for observing pairs with like and unlike flavour at different proper times remarkably differs from the quantum mechanical prediction. Asymmetric B-factories provide a powerful tool for the study of the EPR problem since the relative detection experiments are shown to be capable of a time-dependent measurement precise enough to discriminate between local realism and quantum theory.Comment: 18 pages, 3 figure

    Effects of long term application of compost and poultry manure on soil quality of citrus orchards in Southern Italy.

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    A six-year study was carried out in an organically managed orange orchard located in Sicily (Southern Italy) to assess the effect of compost and organic fertilizers utilisation on soil quality. Adopting a randomized-block experimental design with three replicates, four treatments were carried out. In treatments 1 and 2, two different composts (C1 from distillery by products and C2 from livestock wastes) were applied. The plots of treatment 3 were fertilized using dried poultry manure. The control treatment was fertilized with mineral/synthetic fertilizers. In order to verify the hypothesis that composts and organic fertilizers improve soil fertility, soil quality was evaluated by selecting dynamic soil parameters, as indicators linked to C and N cycles. Total organic C, total N, C/N ratio, humified fraction, isoelectric focusing (IEF) of extracted organic matter, microbial biomass C, potentially mineralisable N under anaerobic conditions, potenzially mineralizable C, C mineralization quotient and metabolic quotient were determined for each sample. Furthermore, the Comunity level Physiological Profile (by Biolog tecnique) was defined, calculating derived functional biodiversity and versatility indexes. Parameters related to IEF and potentially mineralizable C showed significant differences among the treatments. Moreover, total C, total N and humification parameters tended to increase, while no differences were observed in biodiversity indexes. On these findings, it was concluded that composts and poultry manure only weakly affected soil properties, though they increased soil nutritive elements potentially available to crops

    Cognitive behavioral group therapy versus psychoeducational intervention in Parkinson's disease

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    Objective: The aim of the current study was to evaluate whether cognitive behavioral group therapy has a positive impact on psychiatric, and motor and non-motor symptoms in Parkinson’s disease (PD). Methods: We assigned 20 PD patients with a diagnosis of psychiatric disorder to either a 12-week cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) group or a psychoeducational protocol. For the neurological examination, we administered the Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale and the non-motor symptoms scale. The severity of psychiatric symptoms was assessed by means of the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale, the Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale, the Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale, and the Clinical Global Impressions. Results: Cognitive behavioral group therapy was effective in treating depression and anxiety symptoms as well as reducing the severity of non-motor symptoms in PD patients; whereas, no changes were observed in PD patients treated with the psychoeducational protocol. Conclusion: CBT offered in a group format should be considered in addition to standard drug therapy in PD patient

    Characterization of self-injected electron beams from LWFA experiments at SPARC_LAB

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    The plasma-based acceleration is an encouraging technique to overcome the limits of the accelerating gradient in the conventional RF acceleration. A plasma accelerator is able to provide accelerating fields up to hundreds of GeV/mGeV/m, paving the way to accelerate particles to several MeV over a short distance (below the millimetre range). Here the characteristics of preliminary electron beams obtained with the self-injection mechanism produced with the FLAME high-power laser at the SPARC_LAB test facility are shown. In detail, with an energy laser on focus of 1.5 J1.5\ J and a pulse temporal length (FWHM) of 40 fs40\ fs, we obtained an electron plasma density due to laser ionization of about 6×1018 cm−36 \times 10^{18}\ cm^{-3}, electron energy up to 350 MeV350\ MeV and beam charge in the range (50−100) pC(50 - 100)\ pC.Comment: 6 pages, 11 figures, conference EAAC201

    EuPRAXIA@SPARC_LAB: the high-brightness RF photo-injector layout proposal

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    At EuPRAXIA@SPARC_LAB, the unique combination of an advanced high-brightness RF injector and a plasma-based accelerator will drive a new multi-disciplinary user-facility. The facility, that is currently under study at INFN-LNF Laboratories (Frascati, Italy) in synergy with the EuPRAXIA collaboration, will operate the plasma-based accelerator in the external injection configuration. Since in this configuration the stability and reproducibility of the acceleration process in the plasma stage is strongly influenced by the RF-generated electron beam, the main challenge for the RF injector design is related to generating and handling high quality electron beams. In the last decades of R&D activity, the crucial role of high-brightness RF photo-injectors in the fields of radiation generation and advanced acceleration schemes has been largely established, making them effective candidates to drive plasma-based accelerators as pilots for user facilities. An RF injector consisting in a high-brightness S-band photo-injector followed by an advanced X-band linac has been proposed for the EuPRAXIA@SPARC_LAB project. The electron beam dynamics in the photo-injector has been explored by means of simulations, resulting in high-brightness, ultra-short bunches with up to 3 kA peak current at the entrance of the advanced X-band linac booster. The EuPRAXIA@SPARC_LAB high-brightness photo-injector is described here together with performance optimisation and sensitivity studies aiming to actual check the robustness and reliability of the desired working point.Comment: 5 pages,5 figures, EAAC201

    Frontiers of beam diagnostics in plasma accelerators: measuring the ultra-fast and ultra-cold

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    Advanced diagnostics are essential tools in the development of plasma-based accelerators. The accurate measurement of the quality of beams at the exit of the plasma channel is crucial to optimize the parameters of the plasma accelerator. 6D electron beam diagnostics will be reviewed with emphasis on emittance measurement, which is particularly complex due to large energy spread and divergence of the emerging beams, and on femtosecond bunch length measurements

    Gene variants with suicidal risk in a sample of subjects with chronic migraine and affective temperamental dysregulation

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    BACKGROUND: Risk factors for suicide are at least partially heritable and functional polymorphisms of targeted genes have been suggested to be implicated in the pathogenesis of this phenomenon. However, other studies examining the association between specific gene variants and suicide revealed inconsistent findings. We aims to evaluate the possible association between MAO-A3, CYP1A2*1F and GNB3 gene variants, hopelessness and suicidal risk in a sample of subjects with chronic migraine and affective temperamental dysregulation. METHODS: 56 women were genotyped for MAO-A3, CYP1A2*1F and GNB3 gene variants. Participants were also assessed using Beck Hopelessness Scale (BHS), the Temperament Evaluation of the Memphis, Pisa, Paris and San Diego-Autoquestionnaire (TEMPS-A), and the Suicidal History Self-Rating Screening Scale (SHSS). RESULTS: Patients with higher total scores on affective dysregulated temperaments are more likely to have higher BHS (11.27 +/- 5.54 vs. 5.73 +/- 3.81; t19.20 = -3.57; p = 9 indicating high levels of hopelessness. No association was found between MAO-A3, CYP1A2*1F and GNB3 gene variants and suicidal risk as assessed by BHS and SHSS. CONCLUSIONS: This study did not sustain the association between MAO-A3, CYP1A2*1F and GNB3 gene variants and increased suicidal risk in patients with chronic migraine and affective temperamental dysregulation. Further studies investigating the gene-environment interaction or focusing on other genetic risk factors involved in suicidal behaviour are needed

    Involvement of pro-inflammatory cytokines and growth factors in the pathogenesis of Dupuytren's contracture: a novel target for a possible future therapeutic strategy?

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    Dupuytren's contracture (DC) is a benign fibro-proliferative disease of the hand causing fibrotic nodules and fascial cords which determine debilitating contracture and deformities of fingers and hands. The present study was designed to characterize pro-inflammatory cytokines and growth factors involved in the pathogenesis, progression and recurrence of this disease, in order to find novel targets for alternative therapies and strategies in controlling DC. The expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines and of growth factors was detected by immunohistochemistry in fibrotic nodules and normal palmar fascia resected respectively from patients affected by DC and carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS; as negative controls). Reverse transcription (RT)-PCR analysis and immunofluorescence were performed to quantify the expression of transforming growth factor (TGF)-β1, interleukin (IL)-1β and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) by primary cultures of myofibroblasts and fibroblasts isolated from Dupuytren's nodules. Histological analysis showed high cellularity and high proliferation rate in Dupuytren's tissue, together with the presence of myofibroblastic isotypes; immunohistochemical staining for macrophages was completely negative. In addition, a strong expression of TGF-β1, IL-1β and VEGF was evident in the extracellular matrix and in the cytoplasm of fibroblasts and myofibroblasts in Dupuytren's nodular tissues, as compared with control tissues. These results were confirmed by RT-PCR and by immunofluorescence in pathological and normal primary cell cultures. These preliminary observations suggest that TGF-β1, IL-1β and VEGF may be considered potential therapeutic targets in the treatment of Dupuytren's disease (DD)

    Two Algorithms for Orthogonal Nonnegative Matrix Factorization with Application to Clustering

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    Approximate matrix factorization techniques with both nonnegativity and orthogonality constraints, referred to as orthogonal nonnegative matrix factorization (ONMF), have been recently introduced and shown to work remarkably well for clustering tasks such as document classification. In this paper, we introduce two new methods to solve ONMF. First, we show athematical equivalence between ONMF and a weighted variant of spherical k-means, from which we derive our first method, a simple EM-like algorithm. This also allows us to determine when ONMF should be preferred to k-means and spherical k-means. Our second method is based on an augmented Lagrangian approach. Standard ONMF algorithms typically enforce nonnegativity for their iterates while trying to achieve orthogonality at the limit (e.g., using a proper penalization term or a suitably chosen search direction). Our method works the opposite way: orthogonality is strictly imposed at each step while nonnegativity is asymptotically obtained, using a quadratic penalty. Finally, we show that the two proposed approaches compare favorably with standard ONMF algorithms on synthetic, text and image data sets.Comment: 17 pages, 8 figures. New numerical experiments (document and synthetic data sets

    Conceptual design of electron beam diagnostics for high brightness plasma accelerator

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    A design study of the diagnostics of a high brightness linac, based on X-band structures, and a plasma accelerator stage, has been delivered in the framework of the EuPRAXIA@SPARC_LAB project. In this paper, we present a conceptual design of the proposed diagnostics, using state of the art systems and new and under development devices. Single shot measurements are preferable for plasma accelerated beams, including emittance, while μ\mum level and fs scale beam size and bunch length respectively are requested. The needed to separate the driver pulse (both laser or beam) from the witness accelerated bunch imposes additional constrains for the diagnostics. We plan to use betatron radiation for the emittance measurement just at the end of the plasma booster, while other single-shot methods must be proven before to be implemented. Longitudinal measurements, being in any case not trivial for the fs level bunch length, seem to have already a wider range of possibilities
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