7,480 research outputs found

    EPR before EPR: a 1930 Einstein-Bohr thought experiment revisited

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    In 1930 Einstein argued against consistency of the time-energy uncertainty relation by discussing a thought experiment involving a measurement of mass of the box which emitted a photon. Bohr seemingly triumphed over Einstein by arguing that the Einstein's own general theory of relativity saves the consistency of quantum mechanics. We revisit this thought experiment from a modern point of view at a level suitable for undergraduate readership and find that neither Einstein nor Bohr was right. Instead, this thought experiment should be thought of as an early example of a system demonstrating nonlocal "EPR" quantum correlations, five years before the famous Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen paper.Comment: 11 pages, revised, accepted for publication in Eur. J. Phy

    Disinvestment in healthcare: An overview of HTA agencies and organizations activities at European level

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    Background: In an era of a growing economic pressure for all health systems, the interest for "disinvestment" in healthcare increased. In this context, evidence based approaches such as Health Technology Assessment (HTA) are needed both to invest and to disinvest in health technologies. In order to investigate the extent of application of HTA in this field, methodological projects/frameworks, case studies, dissemination initiatives on disinvestment released by HTA agencies and organizations located in Europe were searched. Methods: In July 2015, the websites of HTA agencies and organizations belonging to the European network for HTA (EUnetHTA) and the International Network of Agencies for HTA (INAHTA) were accessed and searched through the use of the term "disinvestment". Retrieved deliverables were considered eligible if they reported methodological projects/frameworks, case studies and dissemination initiatives focused on disinvestment in healthcare. Results: 62 HTA agencies/organizations were accessed and eight methodological projects/frameworks, one case study and one dissemination initiative were found starting from 2007. With respect to methodological projects/frameworks, two were delivered in Austria, one in Italy, two in Spain and three in U.K. As for the case study and the dissemination initiative, both came from U.K. The majority of deliverables were aimed at making an overview of existing disinvestment approaches and at identifying challenges in their introduction. Conclusions: Today, in a healthcare context characterized by resource scarcity and increasing service demand, "disinvestment" from low-value services and reinvestment in high-value ones is a key strategy that may be supported by HTA. The lack of evaluation of technologies in use, in particular at the end of their lifecycle, may be due to the scant availability of frameworks and guidelines for identification and assessment of obsolete technologies that was shown by our work. Although several projects were carried out in different countries, most remain constrained to the field of research. Disinvestment is a relatively new concept in HTA that could pose challenges also from a methodological point of view. To tackle these challenges, it is necessary to construct experiences at international level with the aim to develop new methodological approaches to produce and grow evidence on disinvestment policies and practices

    Effect of Xylanase on the Technological Behaviour of Wheat Flours

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    The objective of this work is to investigate the effect of enzyme xylanase on the technological behaviour of wheat flours, particularly in alveograms and bread making, using two flour qualities and two bread making methods. The enzyme used was xylanase from Bacillus subtilis which is sold for mainly for baking applications. Breads were made applying both the French and the pan bread methods. Experts scored the external and internal characteristics of breads. Increase in enzyme concentration produced a decrease in maximum pressure (P) and tensile strength/extensibility (P/L) but deformation energy (W) remained almost constant in the alveogram. This means that the water released by the hydrolysis of insoluble pentosans has reduced the tenacity of the dough. The higher the enzyme concentration, the lower the dough consistency during kneading. Besides, the greatest improvement of quality was produced when xylanase was added to low quality flour and when the French type bread making method was applied.Fil: Osella, C.. Universidad Nacional del Litoral. Facultad de Ingeniería Química. Instituto de Tecnología de Los Alimentos; ArgentinaFil: de la Torre, M. A. G.. Universidad Nacional del Litoral. Facultad de Ingeniería Química. Instituto de Tecnología de Los Alimentos; ArgentinaFil: Erben, Melina. Universidad Nacional del Litoral. Facultad de Ingeniería Química. Instituto de Tecnología de Los Alimentos; Argentina. Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas. Centro Científico Tecnológico Santa Fe; ArgentinaFil: Gallardo, A.. Universidad Nacional del Litoral. Facultad de Ingeniería Química. Instituto de Tecnología de Los Alimentos; ArgentinaFil: Sanchez, H.. Universidad Nacional del Litoral. Facultad de Ingeniería Química. Instituto de Tecnología de Los Alimentos; Argentin

    Functional assessment of cancer therapy questionnaire for breast cancer (FACT-B+4): Italian version validation

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    BACKGROUND: Improvements in breast cancer diagnosis and treatment led to an increased incidence of survivors' rate. The healthcare system has to face new problems related not only to the treatment of the disease, but also to the management of the quality of life after the diagnosis. The aim of this study was to validate the Italian version of the Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy - Breast (FACT-B+4) questionnaire and to evaluate its reliability. METHODS: The questionnaire was administered twice, with an interval of three days between each administration, to a cohort of women of the Breast Surgical Unit, PoliclincoUmberto I. Cronbach's alpha was used as a measure of the internal consistency of the Italian version. RESULTS: The Italian version of the tool was administered to 55 subjects. The Cronbach's alpha for most scores registered values >0.7, both at baseline and at the follow-up analysis, therefore the subscale showed good internal consistency. CONCLUSIONS: The Italian version of FACT-B+4 demonstrated acceptable reliability properties in the Breast Unit patients. The use of this questionnaire seemed to be effective and in line with the results derived from the English and Spanishversions. Internal consistency and validity had similar performance results

    Olive Oil Phenolic Compounds’ Activity against Age-Associated Cognitive Decline: Clinical and Experimental Evidence

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    Epidemiological studies have shown that consuming olive oil rich in phenolic bioactive compounds is associated with a lower risk of neurodegenerative diseases and better cognitive performance in aged populations. Since oxidative stress is a common hallmark of age-related cognitive decline, incorporating exogenous antioxidants could have beneficial effects on brain aging. In this review, we firstly summarize and critically discuss the current preclinical evidence and the potential neuroprotective mechanisms. Existing studies indicate that olive oil phenolic compounds can modulate and counteract oxidative stress and neuroinflammation, two relevant pathways linked to the onset and progression of neurodegenerative processes. Secondly, we summarize the current clinical evidence. In contrast to preclinical studies, there is no direct evidence in humans of the bioactivity of olive oil phenolic compounds. Instead, we have summarized current findings regarding nutritional interventions supplemented with olive oil on cognition. A growing body of research indicates that high consumption of olive oil phenolic compounds is associated with better preservation of cognitive performance, conferring an additional benefit, independent of the dietary pattern. In conclusion, the consumption of olive oil rich in phenolic bioactive compounds has potential neuroprotective effects. Further research is needed to understand the underlying mechanisms and potential clinical applications

    Association between work related stress and health related quality of life: the impact of socio-demographic variables. A cross sectional study in a region of central Italy

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    The aim of this work is investigate relationship between health-related quality of life and work-related stress and the impact of gender, education level, and age on this relationship. A cross-sectional study was conducted among workers of various setting in Rome and Frosinone. Work-related stress was measured with a demand-control questionnaire and health-related functioning by SF (short form)-12 health survey. There were 611 participants. Men reported high mental composite summary (MCS) and physical composite summary (PCS). In multivariate analysis age, gender (p < 0.001) and job demand (0.045) predicted low PCS. Low MCS predicted poor PCS. Job demand and educational level resulted negatively associated with MCS. In an analysis stratified for age, gender, and educational level, gender and age resulted effect modifier for MCS, gender and education level for PCS. In women increase of decision latitude predict (p = 0.001) an increase in MCS; a low job demand predict high MCS in male (p ‚ȧ 0.001). In younger workers, a lower level of job demand predicted high MCS (<0.001). For PCS, gender and education level resulted effect modifier. In women, high decision latitude predicted higher PCS (p = 0.001) and lower level of job demand results in higher PCS (p ‚ȧ 0.001). Higher educational level resulted predictor of low PCS. Management of risk about work-related stress should consider socio-demographic factors

    Expression of telomeric repeat binding factor-1 in astroglial brain tumors

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    OBJECTIVE: In human somatic cells, telomeres shorten with successive cell divisions, resulting in progressive genomic instability, altered gene expression, and cell death. Recently, telomere-specific deoxyribonucleic acid-binding proteins, such as telomeric repeat binding factor-1 (TRF1), have been proposed as candidates for the role of molecules regulating telomerase activity, and they have been suggested to play key roles in the maintenance of telomere function. The present study was designed to assess TRF1 expression in human astroglial brain tumors and to speculate on the clinical implications of its expression. METHODS: Twenty flash-frozen surgical specimens obtained from adult patients who underwent craniotomy for microsurgical tumor resection, histologically verified as World Health Organization Grade II to IV astrocytomas, were used. Expression of TRF1 in astrocytomas of different grades was studied by means of both immunohistochemical and Western blotting analysis. The correlation between the extent of TRF1 expression and histological grading, performance status, and length of survival of patients underwent statistical analyses. RESULTS: TRF1 was expressed in all tumor samples. The level of its expression was variable, decreasing from low-grade through high-grade astrocytomas (P 0.0032). TRF1 expression correlated with the patient’s length of survival (P 0.001) and performance status (P 0.001) and proved to be an independent indicator of length of survival. CONCLUSION: Our findings suggest that the loss of TRF1 expression capability, as a result of down-regulation of TRF1 expression in malignant gliomas cells, may play a role in the malignant progression of astroglial brain tumors

    Momentum-resolved lattice dynamics of parent and electron-doped Sr2_{2}IrO4_{4}

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    The mixing of orbital and spin character in the wave functions of the 5d5d iridates has led to predictions of strong couplings among their lattice, electronic and magnetic degrees of freedom. As well as realizing a novel spin-orbit assisted Mott-insulating ground state, the perovskite iridate Sr2_{2}IrO4_{4} has strong similarities with the cuprate La2_{2}CuO4_{4}, which on doping hosts a charge-density wave that appears intimately connected to high-temperature superconductivity. These phenomena can be sensitively probed through momentum-resolved measurements of the lattice dynamics, made possible by meV-resolution inelastic x-ray scattering. Here we report the first such measurements for both parent and electron-doped Sr2_{2}IrO4_{4}. We find that the low-energy phonon dispersions and intensities in both compounds are well described by the same nonmagnetic density functional theory calculation. In the parent compound, no changes of the phonons on magnetic ordering are discernible within the experimental resolution, and in the doped compound no anomalies are apparent due to charge-density waves. These measurements extend our knowledge of the lattice properties of (Sr1‚ąíx_{1-x}Lax_{x})2_{2}IrO4_{4} and constrain the couplings of the phonons to magnetic and charge order.Comment: 8 pages, 6 figures (+ 12 pages, 6 figures of supplemental material

    On two-dimensional superpotentials: from classical Hamilton-Jacobi theory to 2D supersymmetric quantum mechanics

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    Superpotentials in N=2{\cal N}=2 supersymmetric classical mechanics are no more than the Hamilton characteristic function of the Hamilton-Jacobi theory for the associated purely bosonic dynamical system. Modulo a global sign, there are several superpotentials ruling Hamilton-Jacobi separable supersymmetric systems, with a number of degrees of freedom greater than one. Here, we explore how supersymmetry and separability are entangled in the quantum version of this kind of system. We also show that the planar anisotropic harmonic oscillator and the two-Newtonian centers of force problem admit two non-equivalent supersymmetric extensions with different ground states and Yukawa couplings.Comment: 14 pages, 2 figures, version to appear in J. Phys. A: Math. Ge
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