5,138 research outputs found

    Using bone measurements to estimate the original sizes of bluefish (Pomatomus saltatrix) from digested remains

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    The ability to estimate the original size of an ingested prey item is an important step in understanding the community and population structure of piscivorous predators (Scharf et al., 1998). More specifically, knowledge of original prey size is essential for deriving important biological information, such as predator consumption rates, biomass of the prey consumed, and selectivity of a predator towards a specific size class of prey (Hansel et al., 1988; Scharf et al., 1997; Radke et al., 2000). To accurately assess the overall “top-down” pressure a predator may exert on prey community structure, prey size is crucial. However, such information is often difficult to collect in the field (Trippel and Beamish, 1987). Stomach-content analyses are the most common methods for examining the diets of piscivorous fish, but the prey items found are often thoroughly digested and sometimes unidentifiable. As a result, obtaining a direct measurement of prey items is frequently impossible

    A New State Record for \u3ci\u3eOlixon Banksii\u3c/i\u3e (Hymenoptera: Rhopalosomatidae) in Missouri.

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    (excerpt) The cosmopolitan family Rhopalosmatidae is comprised of four genera and 37 species (Townes 1977, Goulet and Huber 1993, Fernandez and Sarmiento-M 2002, Lohrmann and Ohl 2007)

    Equity of access to adult hospice inpatient care within north-west England.

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    There is a growing debate about the question of equity of access to hospice and palliative care services. Even countries with relatively well developed palliative care systems are considered to have problems of access and inequity of provision. Despite these concerns, we still lack a relevant evidence base to serve as a guide to action. We present an analysis of access to adult hospice inpatient provision in the north-west region of England that employs Geographical Information Systems (GIS). Measures of the possible demand for, and supply of, hospice inpatient services are used to determine the potential accessibility of cancer patients, assessed at the level of small areas (electoral wards). Further, the use of deprivation scores permits an analysis of the equity of access to adult inpatient hospice care, leading to the identification of areas where additional service provision may be warranted. Our research is subject to a number of caveats�it is limited to inpatient hospice provision and does not include other kinds of inpatient and community-based palliative care services. Likewise, we recognise that not everyone with cancer will require palliative care and also that palliative care needs exist among those with nonmalignant conditions. Nevertheless, our methodology is one that can also be applied more generally

    Percutaneous Ureteric Stricture Dilation (PCUSD)

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    Ureteric stricture dilation as an interventional uroradiological technique was initiated locally in March 1991. In ureteric dilation two approaches are feasible. The retrograde cystoscopic route is undertaken by a uroradiology team in theatre, and the renal antegrade percutaneous route is undertaken in the radiology interventional suite. This study reviewed the results of percutaneous ureteric stricture dilation undertaken over the last five years. Eighteen dilations in 16 patients (10 males : 6 females) were analysed. There was an overall success rate of 61 %. We found the procedure to be safe and effective with minimal complications. No mortality resulted from the procedure. The indications for its use are fully discussed.peer-reviewe

    Sympathetic Nerve Modulation of Joint Pathology in Adjuvant-Induced Arthritis

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    Background: There is increasing data suggesting a net increase in sympathetic tone plays an important role in rheumatoid arthritis. Several studies have reported altered distribution and density of autonomic nerves in patients with rheumatoid arthritis and animal models for the disease. This provides anatomical evidence that supports a neurally-mediated drive in inflammation and joint destruction. Methods: Adult rats were injected with complete Freund’s adjuvant. At 12 days post immunization, animals were randomly placed into a drug treatment group (SH1293, which interacts with - and ß2-ARs), an adjuvant arthritic group, or a control group. These animals were sacrificed at 14, 21, 28 and 126 days. The ankles were then evaluated for changes in lymphocytes, bone area, osteoclasts, cartilage, pannus, sympathetic nerves, and bone volume. Results: At 21 days, the drug treated group showed a significant improvement in lymphocytes, cartilage and bone volume. There was also a decrease in pannus and preservation of sympathetic nerves that was not significant. At 28 days, the drug treated group did not appear to show any significance, however, there was still an improvement in lymphocytes, pannus, and sympathetic nerves. The cartilage and bone volume became significantly less. Investigation of bone area and osteoclasts revealed 2 distinct groups. Some responded favorably to the drug while some responded less favorably. At both 21 and 28 days the high responding SH1293 rats showed a significant improvement in bone area and osteoclasts. There appears to be significant correlations between the variables and a strong general trend of joint preservation with the drug’s usage. At 126 days there were continued remodeling changes noted. Conclusion: Blocking increased sympathetic activity does alter bone metabolism in adjuvant-induced arthritic rats. These effects seem to be mediated by reduced norepinephrine interaction with adrenergic receptors peripherally

    Swan-plant interactions in a chalk river catchment

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    Plants are of fundamental importance to the structure, functioning and service provision of many ecosystems. However, herbivores can have negative ecological and socioeconomic effects on plant communities through consumption, trampling and alteration of nutrient cycles. In this thesis I address a particular herbivore-plant interaction: the grazing of plants in chalk river catchments, principally the submerged macrophyte water crowfoot (Ranunculus penicillatus ssp. pseudofluitans (Syne) S.D. Webster) and terrestrial pasture grass species, by flocks of non-breeding mute swans (Cygnus olor Gmelin, 1789). This research was carried out over two years in the River Frome catchment (Dorset, UK). Based on a meta-analysis of previous waterfowl grazing studies I show that waterfowl biomass density (kg ha-1) rather than individual density (ind. ha-1) is a better predictor of reductions in plant standing crop. Most studies to date have analysed such reductions using only individual densities, despite large between-taxa variation in waterfowl body mass, diet and intake rates. I quantified the abundance, species richness, evenness, flowering and dominance of the chalk river aquatic plant community in relation to biotic and abiotic factors during the growth-, peak-, and recession-phases of the growth cycle. The relative importance of herbivory, riparian shading, water temperature and distance downstream varied between different phases of the plant growth cycle, highlighting the importance of seasonal patterns in regulation of plant community structure. The River Frome swan population varied seasonally, being highest in the winter. The population was dominated by non-breeding adults and juveniles that lived in flocks. These flocks exhibited strong seasonal habitat switches between terrestrial pasture in winter and spring, and river in summer and autumn. I provided evidence that this switch was linked to the seasonal decrease in water velocity between spring and summer, which reduced the metabolic costs of river feeding and increased the relative profitability of aquatic food resources. I used a mathematical population model and an individual-based behavioural model respectively to explore two management options for the alleviation of the swan grazing conflict in chalk rivers: population control and habitat alterations. Population control measures, such as clutch manipulations, fertility control, culling or translocations, were predicted to be unsuccessful except at impractically high levels of management effort, due to the effects of immigration and high survival rates in offsetting removed eggs or individuals. Habitat alterations, in particular the narrowing of river channels to cause a local increase in water velocity and thus swan foraging costs, are more promising management options as they require lower management effort, are less ethically controversial, and address the fundamental reason why swans select their food resources, the rate of net energy gain (‘profitability’)

    Laser anemometer measurements in a transonic axial-flow fan rotor

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    Laser anemometer surveys were made of the 3-D flow field in NASA rotor 67, a low aspect ratio transonic axial-flow fan rotor. The test rotor has a tip relative Mach number of 1.38. The flowfield was surveyed at design speed at near peak efficiency and near stall operating conditions. Data is presented in the form of relative Mach number and relative flow angle distributions on surfaces of revolution at nine spanwise locations evenly spaced from hub to tip. At each spanwise location, data was acquired upstream, within, and downstream of the rotor. Aerodynamic performance measurements and detailed rotor blade and annulus geometry are also presented so that the experimental results can be used as a test case for 3-D turbomachinery flow analysis codes

    Danse du Ventre: A Fresh Appraisal

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    Every few years there is a resurgence of interest in what has come to be known as danse du ventre¹ or, less elegantly, belly dancing. By whatever name it may be called, however, this dance has inevitably elicited an exaggerated response from those not accustomed to the social background to which it belongs. In the past a climate of disapproval has hampered any attempt at serious evaluation of this dance form; at the present time the situation has reversed to a point where the enthusiasm of its protagonists has become the chief hindrance to an objective assessment. A dance whose enduring charm has managed to survive not only a body of disparaging commentary, but the spurious and tawdry aura surrounding so many of its practitioners, seems deserving of a fresh appraisal

    Our place in the Asian century: Southeast Asia as ‘The Third Way’

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    The report, for Asialink at the University of Melbourne, reports the findings of the Asialink Commission, which examined Australia\u27s relations with Southeast Asia. It argues that, at a time of shifting power relations in the Asia-Pacific region, Australia take a more multilateral approach by orienting its foreign and trade policies towards Southeast Asia. By committing more attention to the Southeast Asia region, Australia will enhance its relationships with the region\u27s two principal powers, the United States and China