253 research outputs found

    Suicides by pesticide ingestion in Pakistan and the impact of pesticide regulation

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    Introduction: Suicide is a major public health problem in Pakistan, accounting to approximately 19,331 deaths every year. Many are due to consumption of acutely toxic pesticides; however, there is a lack of national suicide data, limiting knowledge and potential for intervention. In this paper, we aimed to review the literature on pesticide self-poisoning in Pakistan to identify the most problematic pesticides in relation to national pesticide regulations. Methods: Information on the currently registered and banned pesticides was obtained from Ministry of National Food Security and Research while data on pesticide import and use was extracted from FAOSTAT. We searched the following sources for articles and research papers on poisoning in Pakistan: Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health (CINAHL), Google Scholar, Applied Social Sciences Index and Abstracts (ASSIA), Excerpta Medica (EMBASE), National Library of Medicine\u27s MEDLINE (PUBMED), PS102YCHINFO and Pakmedinet.com using the search terms \u27self-poisoning\u27, \u27deliberate self-harm\u27, \u27suicide\u27, \u27methods and means of suicide\u27, \u27organophosphate\u27, \u27wheat pill\u27, \u27aluminium phosphide\u27, \u27acute poisoning\u27, OR \u27pesticides\u27, AND \u27Pakistan\u27. Results: As of May 2021, 382 pesticide active ingredients (substances) were registered in Pakistan, of which five were WHO hazard class Ia (extremely hazardous) and 17 WHO hazard class Ib (highly hazardous). Twenty-six pesticides, four formulations, and seven non-registered pesticides had been banned, of which two were WHO class Ia and five Ib. We identified 106 hospital-level studies of poisoning conducted in Pakistan, of which 23 did not mention self-poisoning cases and one reported no suicidal poisoning cases. We found no community or forensic medicine studies. Of 52,323 poisoning cases identified in these papers, 24,546 [47%] were due to pesticides. The most commonly identified pesticide classes were organophosphorus (OP) insecticides (13,816 cases, 56%) and the fumigant aluminium phosphide (3 g 56% tablets, often termed \u27wheat pills\u27; 686 cases, 2.7%). Few studies identified the particular pesticides involved or the resulting case fatality. Conclusion: We found pesticide poisoning to be a major cause of poisoning in Pakistan, with OP insecticides and the fumigant aluminium phosphide the main pesticides identified. Withdrawal of Class I pesticides (as proposed to occur nationally in 2022) and high concentration aluminium phosphide tablets should rapidly reduce suicidal deaths by reducing the case fatality for low-intention poisoning cases. National cause of death data and forensic toxicology laboratory data identifying the pesticides responsible for deaths will be important to assess impacts of the proposed national ba

    A sweet emergency due to bitter poisoning—A case report

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    Organophosphorus compounds (OPC) are major components of pesticides and nerve gas agents. Self-harm by ingestion of OPC pesticides is one of the common problems encountered in the emergency room (ER), especially in developing countries such as India. It is recognised by the World Health Organization (WHO) as the third most prevalent means of suicide. In addition to the cholinergic effects caused by these agents, they can induce metabolic dysregulations. We present a case of a 22-year-old male patient, without previous history of diabetes, who was brought to the ER in an unresponsive state with an HbA1c of 5%. His initial laboratory investigations revealed hyperglycemia, high anion gap metabolic acidosis, ketonuria, and glycosuria. His relatives revealed intentional ingestion of OPC. He was treated for both OPC poisoning and hyperglycemic ketoacidosis. Adequate acute care was instigated though prognosis could not be gauged due to the early discharge of the patient against medical advice. This case highlights that OPC poisoning can be a possible etiological factor for hyperglycemic ketoacidosis. It can mimic diabetic ketoacidosis leading to delayed diagnosis. Thus, early identification and immediate management are crucial because of the effect of hyperglycemic ketoacidosis on the outcome of a patient with OPC poisoning

    Future Trends in Advanced Materials and Processes

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    The Special Issue “Future Trends in Advanced Materials and Processes” contains original high-quality research papers and comprehensive reviews addressing the relevant state-of-the-art topics in the area of materials focusing on relevant or innovative applications such as radiological hazard evaluations of non-metallic materials, composite materials' characterization, geopolymers, metallic biomaterials, etc

    Risk Exposure to Particles – including Legionella pneumophila – emitted during Showering with Water-Saving Showers

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    The increase in legionellosis incidence in the general population in recent years calls for a better characterization of the sources of infection, such as showering. Water-efficient shower systems that use water atomization technology may emit slightly more inhalable bacteria-sized particles than traditional systems, which may increase the risk of users inhaling contaminants associated with these water droplets. To evaluate the risk, the number and mass of inhalable water droplets emitted by twelve showerheads—eight using water-atomization technology and four using continuous-flow technology— were monitored in a shower stall. The water-atomizing showers tested not only had lower flow rates, but also larger spray angles, less nozzles, and larger nozzle diameters than those of the continuous-flow showerheads. A difference in the behavior of inhalable water droplets between the two technologies was observed, both unobstructed or in the presence of a mannequin. The evaporation of inhalable water droplets emitted by the water-atomization showers favored a homogenous distribution in the shower stall. In the presence of the mannequin, the number and mass of inhalable droplets increased for the continuous-flow showerheads and decreased for the water-atomization showerheads. The water-atomization showerheads emitted less inhalable water mass than the continuous-flow showerheads did per unit of time; however, they generally emitted a slightly higher number of inhalable droplets—only one model performed as well as the continuous-flow showerheads in this regard. To specifically assess the aerosolisation rate of bacteria, in particular of the opportunistic water pathogen Legionella pneumophila, during showering controlled experiments were run with one atomization showerhead and one continuous-flow, first inside a glove box, second inside a shower stall. The bioaerosols were sampled with a Coriolis® air sampler and the total number of viable (cultivable and noncultivable) bacteria was determined by flow cytometry and culture. We found that the rate of viable and cultivable Legionella aerosolized from the water jet was similar between the two showerheads: the viable fraction represents 0.02% of the overall bacteria present in water, while the cultivable fraction corresponds to only 0.0005%. The two showerhead models emitted a similar ratio of airborne Legionella viable and cultivable per volume of water used. Similar results were obtained with naturally contaminated hoses tested in shower stall. Therefore, the risk of exposure to Legionella is not expected to increase significantly with the new generation of water-efficient showerheads

    Paraoxonase in Nervous System

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    The paraoxonase (PON) family consists of—PON1, PON2 and PON3 which are anti-oxidative, any dysfunction in their action, has been suggested to play a role in the pathobiology of diseases having a chronic inflammatory component. PON1 is the most studied which has paraoxonase, arylesterase, thiolactonase, and anti-oxidant actions. Studies have shown the association between lowered PON1 activity and increased incidence of ischemic stroke, dementia, Parkinson disease, multiple sclerosis, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. It may occur due to increased oxidative stress and/or prolonged exposure to organophosphates, and reduced capacity of the body to counter these stresses due to reduced PON1 function. PON2 has arylesterase, lactonase, and antioxidant properties. Under-expression of PON2 is associated with Parkinson Disease and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, and over-expression with tumors with glioblastoma. Various mechanisms have been proposed for the role of PON2 in the pathobiology of the said diseases. PON3 is least studied. The PON family, to some extent, interacts with acetylcholine esterase (AChE), as both share the same locus, and PONs degrade the inhibitors of AChE, especially the organophosphates. This could probably have significant role in the development of Parkinson disease and the prognosis of the treatment of Alzheimer disease by AChE inhibitors

    3D Bioprinted Engineered Living Materials for Continuous Organophosphorus Compound Detoxification

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    Engineered living materials (ELMs) are a rapidly emerging class of materials, demonstrating a wide range of functionalities, including responsive morphing, self-healing, and bio-catalysis. 3D bioprinted hydrogels have been used for the fabrication of high resolution, compartmentalised, and load-bearing structures suitable for hosting microbial metabolism, and accordingly represent an ideal environment for ELMs. The interactions between material frameworks, such as hydrogels, and encapsulated life are now beginning to be investigated.Herein, by 3D printing a hydrogel-encapsulated population of Escherichia coli, a chemically inducible, metabolically active, microbial ELM was fabricated. The material was characterised using a wide range of techniques, including fluorescence microscopy and cryogenic electron microscopy. Toxic organophosphorus compound (OPC) detoxifying capabilities were conveyed to the material through inducible expression of Agrobacterium radiobacter phosphotriesterase (arPTE). The reaction diffusion process occurring at the interface of the OPC detoxifying ELM was investigated using continuous fluorescence imaging of Coumaphos hydrolysis.. Principal component analysis was then used to uncover spatial and temporal features within this data, with relevance for future optimisation of catalytic microbial ELMstructures. To further demonstrate the applicability of this 3D printable microbial ELM, the material was incorporated into an entirely 3D printed flow reactor, demonstrating effective, cyclical detoxification of an OPC solution at high flow rate.Looking towards the future of ELM design, a novel, 3D printable, contractile-thermosensitive,double-network hydrogel was used to create thermo-responsive OPC degrading bioreactors, capable of autonomously controlling their performance

    Sustainable Environmental Solutions

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    This book collects research activities focused on the development of new processes to replace obsolete practices that are often highly invasive, unsustainable, and socially unacceptable.Taking inspiration from real problems and the need to face real cases of contamination or prevent potentially harmful situations, the development and optimization of ‘smart’ solutions, i.e., sustainable not only from an environmental point of view but also economically, are discussed in order to encourage, as much as possible, their actual implementation

    Inventions in the Area of Nanomaterials and Nanotechnologies. Part III

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    Introduction. Advanced technologies inspire people by demonstrating the latest achievements (materials, methods, systems, technologies, devices etc.) that dramatically change the world. This, first of all, concerns nanotechnological inventions designed by scientists, engineers and specialists from different countries. Main part. The article provides an abstract overview of inventions of scientists, engineers and specialists from different countries: Russia, USA, Turkmenistan, Japan et al. The results of the creative activity of scientists, engineers and specialists, including inventions in the field of nanotechnology and nanomaterials allow, when introduced to industry, achieving a significant effect in construction, housing and communal services, and related sectors of the economy. For example, the invention «Modifying additive» is related to the road construction and can be applied in production of asphalt-concrete, including that with utilizing of nanotechnologies. To improve performance characteristics of bitumen and asphalt concrete one can use modifying additive which comprises a mix of carbon nanomaterials. The aim of the invention is to solve the task of creating new technology which could provide obtaining of asphalt concrete with enhanced performance characteristics. The following inventions in the field of nanotechnology can also be interesting for specialists: a method to obtain multi-layered nanocomposite coating; a method of laser surface treatment for steel products; a device to obtain graphene-containing suspension; a method to obtain nanocrystal silicon powder; a self-cleaning material with chemical and biological protection properties; a method of obtaining nanostructured composite material on the basis of aluminum; a device control system with the shape memory effect to manipulate micro- and nanoobjects; a method to form plasmon nanostructures on the object surfaces to provide non-destructive analysis of low concentrations of chemical compounds by Raman spectroscopy et al. Conclusion. One of the most challenging tasks the economy of every country face is to increase industrial competitiveness through technological upgrade. From the side of the state and companies the principal object to control in this process are the people and enterprises dealing with introduction of inventions and new technologies

    Molecular-level understanding of highly selective heavy rare earth element uptake by organophosphorus modified MIL-101(Cr)

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    Selective separation of rare earth elements (REEs) from solutions of mixed heavy and light metals by solid adsorbents is an important challenge in the fields of water treatment and metal recovery. The main challenge is water instability of many adsorbents, specifically metal–organic frameworks (MOFs), and their low selectivity. Grafting particular organophosphorus compounds (OPCs) on the MIL-101(Cr) MOF can provide both stability and selectivity. When the tributyl phosphate (TBP), bis(2-ethylhexyl) hydrogen phosphate (D2EHPA or HDEHP) and bis(2,4,4-trimethylpentyl) phosphinic acid (Cyanex®-272) OPCs are grafted and applied to mixed-metal aqueous solutions containing Co2+, Ni2+, Cu2+, Zn2+, Nd3+, Gd3+ and Er3+, MIL-101(Cr) offers high selectivity towards the Nd3+, Gd3+ and Er3+ REEs (with stronger affinity towards Er3+). However, the underlying chemistry is unknown and the factors leading to the selectivity remain poorly understood. To uncover the key molecular-level factors, we performed state-of-the-art computational simulations using a combination of high-level density functional theory (DFT), semi-empirical calculations, and configurational sampling of the metal ion-MOF binding modes in aqueous solutions. Our simulation study reproduced the available experimental results, in addition to determining the contributing intermolecular interactions, uptake modes and the most significant structural features for improving selectivity towards the REEs. Therefore, our most important result is rationalization of the mechanism of REE separation by OPC-grafted MOFs using quantum mechanical and electrostatic principles. The results provide guidelines for synthesis of OPC-grafted MIL-101(Cr) structures with enhanced selectivity and stability. Moreover, an efficient computational framework is proposed to facilitate comprehensive modeling of similar systems.ChemE/Catalysis Engineerin

    Organophosphorus Poisoning with Homicidal Intention in a Neonate

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    Organophosphorus Compounds (OPC) are widely used as pesticides, and poisoning due to OPC is very rare in neonates. A 12-dayold female neonate was admitted with gasping respiration, excessive oral secretions and cold extremities. She had frothing from mouth and nose with an offensive odour, was hypothermic, hypotonic, cyanosed and was in mild stupor. Pupils were pin pointed, capillary refill time was 4-5 sec and had bilateral crepitations of lungs on auscultation. The baby was intubated, given 0.1 mg of atropine followed by 0.9% saline bolus and gastric lavage. She was treated with empirical antibiotics, atropine, Pralidoxime (PAM) and respiratory support. The baby responded well to treatment and was discharged on 10th day of admission. This could be the second case of Organophosphorus (OP) poisoning with homicidal intention reported in neonates
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