2,862 research outputs found

    Process feasibility study in support of silicon material task 1

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    Results for process system properties, chemical engineering and economic analyses of the new technologies and processes being developed for the production of lower cost silicon for solar cells are presented. Analyses of process system properties are important for chemical materials involved in the several processes under consideration for semiconductor and solar cell grade silicon production. Major physical, thermodynamic and transport property data are reported for silicon source and processing chemical materials

    'Mindless markers of the nation': The routine flagging of nationhood across the visual environment

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    The visual environment has increasingly been used as a lens with which to understand wider processes of social and economic change with studies employing in-depth qualitative approaches to focus on, for example, gentrification or trans-national networks. This exploratory paper offers an alternative perspective by using a novel method, quantitative photo mapping, to examine the extent to which a particular socio-cultural marker, the nation, is ‘flagged’ across three contrasting sites in Britain. As a multi-national state with an increasingly diverse population, Britain offers a particularly fruitful case study, drawing in debates around devolution, European integration and Commonwealth migration. In contributing to wider debates around banal nationalism, the paper notes the extent to which nations are increasingly articulated through commerce, consumption and market exchange and the overall significance of everyday markers (signs, objects, infrastructure) in naturalising a national view of the world

    Factors Limiting the Spread of the Protective Symbiont \u3cem\u3eHamiltonella defensa\u3c/em\u3e in \u3cem\u3eAphis craccivora\u3c/em\u3e Aphids

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    Many insects are associated with heritable symbionts that mediate ecological interactions, including host protection against natural enemies. The cowpea aphid, Aphis craccivora, is a polyphagous pest that harbors Hamiltonella defensa, which defends against parasitic wasps. Despite this protective benefit, this symbiont occurs only at intermediate frequencies in field populations. To identify factors constraining H. defensa invasion in Ap. craccivora, we estimated symbiont transmission rates, performed fitness assays, and measured infection dynamics in population cages to evaluate effects of infection. Similar to results with the pea aphid, Acyrthosiphon pisum, we found no consistent costs to infection using component fitness assays, but we did identify clear costs to infection in population cages when no enemies were present. Maternal transmission rates of H. defensa in Ap. craccivora were high (ca. 99%) but not perfect. Transmission failures and infection costs likely limit the spread of protective H. defensa in Ap. craccivora. We also characterized several parameters of H. defensa infection potentially relevant to the protective phenotype. We confirmed the presence of H. defensa in aphid hemolymph, where it potentially interacts with endoparasites, and performed real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR) to estimate symbiont and phage abundance during aphid development. We also examined strain variation of H. defensa and its bacteriophage at multiple loci, and despite our lines being collected in different regions of North America, they were infected with a nearly identical strains of H. defensa and APSE4 phage. The limited strain diversity observed for these defensive elements may result in relatively static protection profile for this defensive symbiosis

    Disulfonated tetraphenyl chlorin (TPCS2a)–induced photochemical internalisation of bleomycin in patients with solid malignancies: A first-in-man phase I dose escalation clinical trial

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    BACKGROUND: Photochemical internalisation, a novel minimally invasive treatment, has shown promising preclinical results in enhancing and site-directing the effect of anticancer drugs by illumination, which initiates localised chemotherapy release. We assessed the safety and tolerability of a newly developed photosensitiser, disulfonated tetraphenyl chlorin (TPCS2a), in mediating photochemical internalisation of bleomycin in patients with advanced and recurrent solid malignancies. METHODS: In this phase 1, dose-escalation, first-in-man trial, we recruited patients (aged ≥18 to <85 years) with local recurrent, advanced, or metastatic cutaneous or subcutaneous malignancies who were clinically assessed as eligible for bleomycin chemotherapy from a single centre in the UK. Patients were given TPCS2a on day 0 by slow intravenous injection, followed by a fixed dose of 15 000 IU/m2 bleomycin by intravenous infusion on day 4. After 3 h, the surface of the target tumour was illuminated with 652 nm laser light (fixed at 60 J/cm2). The TPCS2a starting dose was 0·25 mg/kg and was then escalated in successive dose cohorts of three patients (0·5, 1·0, and 1·5 mg/kg). The primary endpoints were safety and tolerability of TPCS2a; other co-primary endpoints were dose-limiting toxicity and maximum tolerated dose. The primary analysis was per protocol. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT00993512, and has been completed. FINDINGS: Between Oct 3, 2009, and Jan 14, 2014, we recruited 22 patients into the trial. 12 patients completed the 3-month follow-up period. Adverse events related to photochemical internalisation were either local, resulting from the local inflammatory process, or systemic, mostly as a result of the skin-photosensitising effect of TPCS2a. The most common grade 3 or worse adverse events were unexpected higher transient pain response (grade 3) localised to the treatment site recorded in nine patients, and respiratory failure (grade 4) noted in two patients. One dose-limiting toxicity was reported in the 1·0 mg/kg cohort (skin photosensitivity [grade 2]). Dose-limiting toxicities were reported in two of three patients at a TPCS2a dose of 1·5 mg/kg (skin photosensitivity [grade 3] and wound infection [grade 3]); thus, the maximum tolerated dose of TPCS2a was 1·0 mg/kg. Administration of TPCS2a was found to be safe and tolerable by all patients. No deaths related to photochemical internalisation treatment occurred. INTERPRETATION: TPCS2a-mediated photochemical internalisation of bleomycin is safe and tolerable. We identified TPCS2a 0·25 mg/kg as the recommended treatment dose for future trials. FUNDING: PCI Biotech

    Cytomegalovirus, Epstein–Barr virus and risk of breast cancer before age 40 years: a case–control study

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    We investigated whether there is an association between cytomegalovirus (CMV) and Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) IgG levels and risk of breast cancer before age 40 years. CMV and EBV IgG levels were measured in stored plasma from 208 women with breast cancer and 169 controls who participated in the Australian Breast Cancer Family Study (ABCFS), a population-based case-control study. CMV and EBV IgG values were measured in units of optical density (OD). Cases and controls did not differ in seropositivity for CMV (59 and 57% respectively; P=0.8) or EBV (97 and 96% respectively; P=0.7). In seropositive women, mean IgG values were higher in cases than controls for CMV (1.20 vs 0.98 OD, P=0.005) but not for EBV (2.65 vs 2.57 OD, P=0.5). The adjusted odds ratios per OD unit were 1.46 (95% CI 1.06-2.03) for CMV IgG and 1.11 (0.93-1.33) for EBV IgG. The higher mean CMV IgG levels found in women with breast cancer could be the result of a more recent infection with CMV, and may mean that late exposure to CMV is a risk factor for breast cancer
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