904 research outputs found

    The Chinese Brush Stroke Experience in Bereavement Counseling

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    In the field of expressive therapies, there are different techniques to help bereaved people to better cope with their losses (e.g., Attig, 2000; Thompson, 2003; Gulledge, 2003; Rogers, 2007; Chandler, 2007). Among various expressive arts techniques, Chinese calligraphy has been used as a therapeutic intervention for behavioral, emotional, and mental health issues (Kao, 1991; Chen, 2003). However, there is no research on using Chinese brushstroke techniques in working with people who have experienced losses. This research focuses on the experience of practicing Chinese brushstroke technique as an expressive therapeutic approach to work with seniors in expressing their feelings toward the lost of a loved one. Six participants with recent loss of a loved one, aged 78 to 94, from the Hebrew Senior Life Rehabilitation Center in Boston, Massachusetts were recruited for this study. The participants attended six sessions of workshop with one and a half hour each. The workshop focused on the application of the Chinese brush stroke techniques in forms of painting and calligraphy as therapeutic intervention for coping with the loss of their loved ones. In this paper, meaning making, continuing bonds with the deceased loved one, and maintaining balance have been identified among many contributing factors to healthy bereavement coping. Practicing Chinese brush strokes techniques in forms of painting and calligraphy appeared to be helpful in promoting these factor

    An investigation into the performance interpretations of Erik Satie’s piano music through historical and contemporary recorded performances that span from 1955 to 2015

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    This study examines the performance interpretations and performance practice of Satie’s piano music through historical to recent recordings that span over the last six decades to expose how his works inspire quasi-impromptu pianism, a key term that I coined to refer to performance decisions that are not strictly informed by performance indications or conventional musical cues, but rather by pianists’ own imagination provoked by the suggestive power risen from different compositional aspects of Satie’s music in addition to the composer’s persona. The presence of quasi-impromptu pianism in some pianists’ interpretations exposes the need to identify probable causes for the unique interpretative freedom offered by his oeuvres for piano, to which this study responds. To what extent has the reduction of performance directions in Satie’s piano music free pianists to diverse interpretations? How did Satie’s notational presentation and the inclusion of in-score texts lead pianists to new performance gestures? The absence of recorded performances by Satie of his piano music or documented discussion of the interpretations of his piano works requires questioning: did the lack of Satie’s authorial voice free pianists to take on an experimental approach in the performances of his piano music? Does Satie’s defiant persona encourage pianists to be spontaneous with their interpretations of his piano music? By conducting performance analysis of recordings between 1955 and 2015, I examine closely the contrasting interpretations by these pianists in response to Satie’s musical language and the way the music is presented on notation. Satie’s original manuscripts and edited piano scores are also scrutinized critically to show how visual presentation of Satie’s piano pieces play a crucial part in stimulating imaginative performance interpretations. I also interviewed contemporary pianists to gain the rationales for their performance decisions, illuminating the factors that lead to quasi-impromptu pianism in Satie’s piano music. These findings recontextualise the existing knowledge of piano performance practice at the turn of the 20th century and re-address the influence of notational presentation on performance interpretation

    A Toxicological Study of HangAmDan-B in Mice

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    AbstractThe aim of the study was to define the toxicity of HangAmDan-B (HAD-B) in mice over the short and long term. HAD-B was studied in 1-week single and 5-week repeated oral dose toxicity tests on male Imprinting Control Region mice. Doses used in 1 week single oral dose toxicity tests were 0, 0.2, 1, 5, and 25 g/kg/day and those of repeated toxicity test were 0, 0.04, 0.2, 1, and 2 g/kg/day. Blood and urine samples were assayed and their morphology observed. Numerical data were compared using Mann-Whitney U test and analysis of variance. Significantly decreased red blood cell levels in mice from S2-HAD-B, S3-HAD-B, S4-HAD-B, and S5-HAD-B groups were observed in single oral dose toxicity tests. Hemoglobin, hematocrit, and mean cell hemoglobin values in mice from the S4-HAD-B and S5-HAD-B groups were also significantly decreased. No mortalities or significant differences in all factors were observed during the dosing period of the repeated dose toxicity test. Administering 2 g/kg/day of HAD-B in mice over a 5-week period showed no significant hematological changes. However, risk of anemia with more than 5 g/kg/ day administration of HAD-B was found. In general, HAD-B appears to be safe and nontoxic, and a no observed adverse effect level in mice was established at 2 g/kg/ day. This data serves as satisfactory preclinical evidence for the safety of HAD-B should a future clinical trial for HAD-B be launched. Further studies are required to confirm these safety results and to carry out a safety trial in humans

    Do Low Preoperative Vitamin D Levels Reduce the Accuracy of Quick Parathyroid Hormone in Predicting Postthyroidectomy Hypocalcemia?

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    BACKGROUND: Although some studies have suggested that low preoperative 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25-OHD) levels may increase the risk of hypocalcemia and decrease the accuracy of single quick parathyroid hormone in predicting hypocalcemia after total thyroidectomy, the literature remains scarce and inconsistent. Our study aimed to address these issues. METHODS: Of the 281 consecutive patients who underwent a total/completion total thyroidectomy, 244 (86.8 %) did not require any oral calcium and/or calcitriol supplements (group 1), while 37 (13.2 %) did (group 2) at hospital discharge. 25-OHD level was checked 1 day before surgery, and postoperative quick parathyroid hormone (PTH) was checked at skin closure (PTH-SC). Postoperative serum calcium was checked regularly. Hypocalcemia was defined by the presence of symptoms or adjusted calcium of <1.90 mmol/L. Significant factors for hypocalcemia were determined by univariate and multivariate analyses. The accuracy of PTH-SC in predicting hypocalcemia was measured by area under a receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC), and the AUC of PTH-SC was compared between patients with preoperative 25-OHD <15 and ≥15 ng/mL via bootstrapping. RESULTS: Preoperative 25-OHD level was not significantly different between groups 1 and 2 (13.1 vs. 12.5 ng/mL, p = 0.175). After adjusting for other significant factors, PTH-SC (odds ratio 2.49, 95 % confidence interval 1.52–4.07, p < 0.001) and parathyroid autotransplantation (odds ratio 3.23, 95 % confidence interval 1.22–8.60, p = 0.019) were the two independent factors for hypocalcemia. The AUC of PTH-SC was similar between those with 25-OHD <15 and ≥15 ng/mL (0.880 vs. 0.850, p = 0.61) CONCLUSIONS: Low 25-OHD was not a significant factor for hypocalcemia and did not lower the accuracy of quick PTH in predicting postthyroidectomy hypocalcemia

    Draft Genome of Bugula neritina, a Colonial Animal Packing Powerful Symbionts and Potential Medicines

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    Many animal phyla have no representatives within the catalog of whole metazoan genome sequences. This dataset fills in one gap in the genome knowledge of animal phyla with a draft genome of Bugula neritina (phylum Bryozoa). Interest in this species spans ecology and biomedical sciences because B. neritina is the natural source of bioactive compounds called bryostatins. Here we present a draft assembly of the B. neritina genome obtained from PacBio and Illumina HiSeq data, as well as genes and proteins predicted de novo and verified using transcriptome data, along with the functional annotation. These sequences will permit a better understanding of host-symbiont interactions at the genomic level, and also contribute additional phylogenomic markers to evaluate Lophophorate or Lophotrochozoa phylogenetic relationships. The effort also fits well with plans to ultimately sequence all orders of the Metazoa

    Transportation Planning, Policy, and Electric Micro-Mobilities: A Knowledge Synthesis of Recent Publications

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    This SSHRC-funded (Grant #972-2020-1009) scoping review synthesizes existing research (2010-2021) related to both private and shared electric micro-mobilities (i.e. e-bikes, e-scooters, e-unicycles, e-skateboards). It considers themes such as: rider demographics, usage, and motivations; mobility justice; benefits of and barriers to EMM use; safety and injuries; modal shift among forms of transportation; rider satisfaction with mode choice; environmental impact; conflict and controversy; EMM pilot programs; and EMM integration, legislation, and policy recommendations. Aside from scholarship, media reports are also included, in order to speak to the environment in which the research takes place

    Performance evaluation of a low-cost, novel vanadium nitride xerogel (VNXG) as a platinum-free electrocatalyst for dye-sensitized solar cells

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    A vanadium nitride xerogel (VNXG) was synthesised by a simple and effective method of ammonialising a vanadium pentoxide xerogel at a higher temperature. Xerogel-structured materials possess salient features such as high surface area, tunable porosity and pore size that result in enhancing the catalytic activity by a fast electron-transport pathway and increase electrolyte diffusion channels. Metal nitrides are reported as promising alternate low-cost counter electrodes to replace the conventional and expensive platinum (Pt) counter electrode. Though few studies are reported on aerogel-based CEs for DSSCs, the present work is the first attempt to synthesize and evaluate the performance of xerogel-structured metal nitrides as counter electrode materials for dye-sensitized solar cells. The synthesized material was well characterized for its structural and morphological characteristics and chemical constituents by photoelectron spectroscopy. Finally, the VNXG was tested for its electrocatalytic performance as a choice of counter electrodes for dye-sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). The photo-current studies were performed under standard 1 SUN, class AAA-simulated illumination with AM1.5G. The consolidated results revealed that the vanadium nitride xerogel exhibited good photocatalytic activity and low charge transfer resistance. This identified it as a promising low-cost counter electrode (CE) material for dye-sensitized solar cells. The photo-current conversion efficiency of the vanadium nitride xerogel CE-based DSSC reached 5.94% comparable to that of the conventional thermal decomposed Pt CE-based DSSC, 7.38% with the same iodide/triiodide electrolyte system. Moreover, the 28 days stability study of VNXG CE DSSCs provided an appreciably stable performance with 37% decrement in the PCE under the same test condition

    Cu based Metal Organic Framework (Cu-MOF) for electrocatalytic hydrogen evolution reaction

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    Hydrogen production using novel catalysts is regarded as one of the most needed technology for the future economic needs and water splitting to give H2 gas, which is a challenging task for large-scale production. This work reports the synthesis of Meso-Cu-BTC metal organic framework and further used for understanding its role in electrochemical hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) in 1 M NaOH solution. Meso-Cu-BTC electrocatalyst showed a less overpotential of 89.32 mV and an onset potential of 25 mV with an appreciable current density. Results show a low Tafel slope of 33.41 mVdec−1 and long-term durability. Thus, the overall results show that Meso-Cu-BTC acted as a good candidate for electrocatalysis towards hydrogen evolution

    The prevalence and experience of Australian naturopaths and Western herbalists working within community pharmacies

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    <p>Abstract</p> <p>Background</p> <p>Naturopaths and Western herbal medicine (WHM) practitioners were surveyed to identify their extent, experience and roles within the community pharmacy setting and to explore their attitudes to integration of complementary medicine (CM) practitioners within the pharmacy setting.</p> <p>Method</p> <p>Practising naturopaths and WHM practitioners were invited to participate in an anonymous, self-administered, on-line survey. Participants were recruited using the mailing lists and websites of CM manufacturers and professional associations.</p> <p>Results</p> <p>479 practitioners participated. 24% of respondents (n = 111) reported they had worked in community pharmacy, three-quarters for less than 5 years. Whilst in this role 74% conducted specialist CMs sales, 62% short customer consultations, 52% long consultations in a private room and 51% staff education. This was generally described as a positive learning experience and many appreciated the opportunity to utilise their specialist knowledge in the service of both customers and pharmacy staff. 14% (n = 15) did not enjoy the experience of working in pharmacy at all and suggested pharmacist attitude largely influenced whether the experience was positive or not. Few practitioners were satisfied with the remuneration received. 44% of the total sample provided comment on the issue of integration into pharmacy, with the main concern being the perceived incommensurate paradigms of practice between pharmacy and naturopathy. Of the total sample, 38% reported that they would consider working as a practitioner in retail pharmacy in future.</p> <p>Conclusions</p> <p>The level of integration of CM into pharmacy is extending beyond the mere stocking of supplements. Naturopaths and Western Herbalists are becoming utilised in pharmacies</p
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