This study aims to examine, through stakeholders consultation, the widely used definitions of four terms related to plastics sustainability: ‘bio-based plastics', ‘bioplastics’, ‘biodegradable plastics’ and ‘plastics recycling’ and to mitigate their potential ambiguity for diverse scientific communities and sectors of activity. For the three terms ‘bio-based plastics', ‘biodegradable’ and ‘recycling’, consolidated definitions were elaborated based on the feedback of online survey and analysis of the pro and con arguments given by face-to-face interviews with 18 experts followed by an online survey of 122 stakeholders. Acceptance of the consolidated definitions was higher than the official ones with an increase of acceptance from 43% to 81% for bio-based plastics, from 47% to 61% for biodegradable plastics, and from 28% to 60% for plastics recycling. The terms ‘biodegradable’ and ‘recycling’ remain ambiguous even after consolidation of the definition. This highlights that more discussions are necessary to achieve a consensual and fair definition of such complex properties and mechanisms. In the term ‘Bioplastics’ the prefix ‘bio’, referring either to the origin of the resources or the end of life of the material, remains difficult to understand and we prefer to advise against its use, especially with non-expert people (e.g. consumers and the public at large), in favour of the use of ‘bio-based plastics’ or ‘biodegradable plastics’. The issue of this study is to help consolidate wider efforts to develop new strategies for replacing oil-based plastics and improving end-of-life options.
β-Cu2V2O7 nanoparticles were prepared using a solution-combustion method using two different fuels, which are: Urea and Glycine. The as-prepared catalysts were characterized using X-ray difraction, Fourier transform infrared spectra, scanning electron microscopy, Brunauer–Emmett–Teller Method, and UV–Vis diffusive refectance spectroscopy. The photocatalytic activity of copper vanadate was investigated by degradation of cationic dye crystal violet in an aqueous solution under UV and visible light irradiation. The effect of selected parameters such as catalyst mass, dye concentration, and solution pH on the catalytic performances has been discussed. On the other hand, the reuse tests of β-Cu2V2O7 displayed high-performance stability after five cycles.
X-ray photodesorption yields of ¹⁵ N 2 and ¹³ CO are derived as a function of the incident photon energy near the N (~ 400 eV) and O K-edge (~ 500 eV) for pure ¹⁵ N 2 ice and mixed ¹³ CO: ¹⁵ N 2 ices. The photodesorption spectra from the mixed ices reveal an indirect desorption mechanism for which the desorption of ¹⁵ N 2 and ¹³ CO is triggered by the photo-absorption of respectively ¹³ CO and ¹⁵ N 2 . This mechanism is confirmed by the X-ray photodesorption of ¹³ CO from a layered ¹³ CO/ ¹⁵ N 2 ice irradiated at 401 eV, on the N 1s -> π* transition of ¹⁵ N 2 . This latter experiment enables to quantify the relevant depth involved in the indirect desorption process, which is found to be 30 - 40 ML in that case. This value is further related to the energy transport of Auger electrons emitted from the photo-absorbing ¹⁵ N 2 molecules that scatter towards the ice surface, inducing the desorption of ¹³ CO. The photodesorption yields corrected from the energy that can participate to the desorption process (expressed in molecules desorbed by eV deposited) do not depend on the photon energy hence neither on the photo-absorbing molecule nor on its state after Auger decay. This demonstrates that X-ray induced electron stimulated desorption (XESD), mediated by Auger scattering, is the dominant process explaining the desorption of ¹⁵ N 2 and ¹³ CO from the ices studied in this work.
Introduction Interpersonal skills, encompassing communication and empathy, are key components of effective medical consultations. Although many organisations have implemented structured training programmes, limited evidence exists on their effectiveness in improving physician interpersonal skills. This study aims to evaluate the effectiveness of a standardised, multifaceted, interpersonal skills development programme for hospital physicians. Methods and analysis This study is a prospective, randomised (with a 1:1 allocation ratio), controlled, open-label, two parallel arm, superiority trial conducted at a single university hospital. Physicians will be randomised to receive either a multifaceted training programme or no intervention. The experimental intervention combines two 4-hour training sessions, dissemination of interactive educational materials, review of video-recorded consultations and individual feedback. The primary outcome measure is the overall 4-Habits Coding Scheme score assessed by two independent raters blinded to the study arm, based on video-recorded consultations, before and after intervention. The secondary outcomes include patient satisfaction, therapeutic alliance, physician self-actualisation and the length of medical consultation. Ethics and dissemination The study protocol was approved on 21 October 2020 by the CECIC Rhône-Alpes Auvergne, Clermont-Ferrand, France (IRB 5891). All participants will provide written informed consent. Efforts will be made to release the primary results within 6 to 9 months of study completion, regardless of whether they confirm or deny the research hypothesis. Trial registration number NCT04703816 .
Rationale: Although the cysteine protease cathepsin S has been implicated in the pathogenesis of several inflammatory lung diseases, its role has not been examined in the context of acute respiratory distress syndrome, a condition that still lacks specific and effective pharmacological treatments. Objectives: Characterize the status of cathepsin S in acute lung inflammation and examine the role of cathepsin S in disease pathogenesis. Methods: Human and mouse model bronchoalveolar lavage fluid samples were analyzed for the presence and activity of cathepsin S and its endogenous inhibitors. Recombinant cathepsin S was instilled directly into the lungs of mice. The effects of cathepsin S knockout and pharmacological inhibition were examined in two models of acute lung injury. Protease-activated receptor-1 antagonism was used to test a possible mechanism for cathepsin S-mediated inflammation. Measurements and main results: Pulmonary cathepsin S levels and activity were elevated in acute respiratory distress syndrome, a phenotype possibly exacerbated by the loss of the endogenous antiprotease, cystatin SN. Direct cathepsin S instillation into the lungs induced key pathologies of acute respiratory distress syndrome including neutrophilia and alveolar leakage. Conversely, in murine models of acute lung injury, genetic knockdown and prophylactic or therapeutic inhibition of cathepsin S reduced neutrophil recruitment and protein leakage. Cathepsin S may partly mediate its pathogenic effects via protease-activated receptor-1, as antagonism of this receptor abrogated cathepsin S-induced airway inflammation. Conclusions: Cathepsin S contributes to acute lung injury and may represent a novel therapeutic target for acute respiratory distress syndrome.
We study the focusing stochastic nonlinear Schrödinger equation in one spatial dimension with multiplicative noise, driven by a Wiener process white in time and colored in space, in the \(L^2\)-critical and supercritical cases. The mass (\(L^2\)-norm) is conserved due to the multiplicative noise defined via the Stratonovich integral, the energy (Hamiltonian) is not preserved. We first investigate both theoretically and numerically how the energy is affected by various spatially correlated random perturbations and its dependence on the discretization parameters and the schemes. We then perform numerical investigation of the noise influence on the global dynamics measuring the probability of blow-up versus scattering behavior depending on parameters of correlation kernels. Finally, we study numerically the effect of the spatially correlated noise on the blow-up behavior, and conclude that such random perturbations do not influence the blow-up dynamics, except for shifting of the blow-up center location. This is similar to what we observed for a space-time white driving noise in Millet et al. (Numerical study of solutions behavior to the 1d stochastic \(L^2\)-critical and supercritical nonlinear Schrödinger equation, 2020. arXiv:2006.10695).
The aim of this paper is to develop and validate a consumer-based food label equity scale. The paper is based on a literature review of brand equity and food labels, one qualitative study, and three quantitative studies. Partial least squares analysis is used to clarify the hierarchical structure of the proposed food label equity scale. The proposed scale has seven first-order facets, namely Design, Relevance, Credibility, Honesty, Visibility, Awareness, and Clarity. The first-order facets then combine formatively into 3 s-order constructs, namely Trust, Informational Value, and Label Familiarity, and, ultimately, into a third-order construct of global food label equity associations.
This paper investigates the dynamics of a model of two chemostats connected by Fickian diffusion with bounded random fluctuations. We prove the existence and uniqueness of non-negative global solution as well as the existence of compact absorbing and attracting sets for the solutions of the corresponding random system. After that, we study the internal structure of the attracting set to obtain more detailed information about the long-time behavior of the state variables. In such a way, we provide conditions under which the extinction of the species cannot be avoided and conditions to ensure the persistence of the species, which is often the main goal pursued by practitioners. In addition, we illustrate the theoretical results with several numerical simulations.
This article focuses on the problem of leader-following consensus of second-order Multi-Agent Systems (MAS) with switching topology and partial aperiodic sampled data. MAS are subject to various constraints related to information exchange among the agents. It is considered that each agent in the network is able to measure its position only and cannot measure either its velocity or acceleration (input). Moreover, the position information is sent to the neighbors at aperiodic and asynchronous sampling rates. At last, a switching communication topology among the agents is considered. An observer-based control protocol is proposed to achieve leader-following consensus for MAS with above mentioned constraints. Using an Average Dwell Time (ADT) approach, sufficient conditions are derived through Lyapunov-based stability analysis to ensure the leader-following consensus. Numerical examples are also included to show the effectiveness of the proposed scheme.
Introduction During spring 2020, four regions of France faced a surge of severe COVID-19 patients which threatened to overflow local intensive care units (ICU) capacities. As an emergency response, between 13 March 2020 and 10 April 2020, an estimated 661 patients were transferred from overcrowded ICUs to eight other French regions and four neighbouring countries. The intensity, geographical spread and the diversity of vectors used are unprecedented. The study aims at assessing the impact of these inter-ICU transfers on the short-term and medium-term physical and psychological outcomes in this population of severe COVID-19 patients. Methods and analysis The TRANSCOV cohort is a multicentre observational retrospective study. All transferred patients between ICUs outside the origin region will be invited to take part. For each transfer, up to four control patients will be selected among those admitted in the same ICU during the same period (±4 days of transfer date). Clinical data will be extracted from medical records and will include haemodynamic and respiratory parameters, as well as clinical severity scores before, during and after transfer. Data linkage with medicoadministrative data will enrich the clinical database and allow follow-up up to 1 year after initial admission. Ethics and dissemination The study has been approved by the French Ethics and Scientific Committee on the 16 July 2020 (file no. 2046524). The results will be disseminated via publication of scientific articles and communications in national and international conferences. Trial registration number 20 CO 015 CZ.
Expanding the chemical space for designing novel anionic redox materials from oxides to sulfides has enabled to better apprehend fundamental aspects dealing with cationic-anionic relative band positioning. Pursuing with chalcogenides, but deviating from cationic substitution, we here present another twist to our band positioning strategy that relies on mixed ligands with the synthesis of the Li2TiS3-xSex solid solution series. Through the series the electrochemical activity displays a bell shape variation that peaks at 260 mAh/g for the composition x = 0.6 with barely no capacity for the x = 0 and x = 3 end members. We show that this capacity results from cumulated anionic (Se2−/Sen−) and (S2−/Sn−) and cationic Ti3+/Ti4+ redox processes and provide evidence for a metal-ligand charge transfer by temperature-driven electron localization. Moreover, DFT calculations reveal that an anionic redox process cannot take place without the dynamic involvement of the transition metal electronic states. These insights can guide the rational synthesis of other Li-rich chalcogenides that are of interest for the development of solid-state batteries. Activation of anionic redox in battery materials promises great benefits for battery materials, but remains an elusive phenomenon. Here, the authors present anion-doping as a novel strategy to unlock electrochemical activity in the cobalt/nickel free cathode material, Li2TiS3-xSex.
This paper presents two novel models: the neural Embedded Dirichlet Process and its hierarchical version, the neural Embedded Hierarchical Dirichlet Process. Both methods extend the Embedded Topic Model (ETM) to nonparametric settings, thus simultaneously learning the number of topics, latent representations of documents, and topic and word embeddings from data. To achieve this, we replace ETM’s logistic normal prior over a Gaussian with a Dirichlet Process and a Hierarchical Dirichlet Process in a variational autoencoding inference setting. We test our models on the 20 Newsgroups and on the Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief datasets. Our models present the advantage of maintaining low perplexity while providing analysts with meaningful document, topic and word representations that outperform other state of the art methods, while avoiding costly reruns on large datasets, even in a multilingual context.
In 2010, the concept of data lake emerged as an alternative to data warehouses for big data management. Data lakes follow a schema-on-read approach to provide rich and flexible analyses. However, although trendy in both the industry and academia, the concept of data lake is still maturing, and there are still few methodological approaches to data lake design. Thus, we introduce a new approach to design a data lake and propose an extensive metadata system to activate richer features than those usually supported in data lake approaches. We implement our approach in the AUDAL data lake, where we jointly exploit both textual documents and tabular data, in contrast with structured and/or semi-structured data typically processed in data lakes from the literature. Furthermore, we also innovate by leveraging metadata to activate both data retrieval and content analysis, including Text-OLAP and SQL querying. Finally, we show the feasibility of our approach using a real-word use case on the one hand, and a benchmark on the other hand.
Background: Gender diversity in health teams is associated with better productivity. As women's participation in surgery has been growing, it is important to improve knowledge about the elements that guide their professional development. Objectives: The aim of this study was to outline the demographic and professional features of female vascular surgeons in Brazil. Methods: A cross-sectional study was designed, in which a questionnaire was made available online for 60 days. Invitations to participate were distributed by institutional e-mail sent from the Brazilian Society of Angiology and Vascular Surgery (SBACV) to associate women surgeons. Results are presented as numbers and percentages. Odds ratios and chi-square tests were used for analysis. Results: From a total of 810 invitations sent out, 281 questionnaires were completed. The most prevalent age groups were 25-35 years (n = 115) and 36-45 years (n = 114). Among those who worked exclusively in the private sector, 79.8% had at least one board certification (OR: 0.76, 95% CI: 0.65-0.89; p = 0.001). Regarding workload distribution, 64.4% and 34.2% reported that they spend more time in the clinic and hospital, respectively. Respondents with more years of experience reported a predominance of office practice (p = 0.002). Although 67.3% (n = 189) had published scientific papers, 68% (n = 191) had never held leadership roles. Conclusions: The study respondents consisted of highly qualified women surgeons with respect to training, certification, and scientific engagement, but they remain underrepresented in professional management positions. Surgical societies and health institutions should act to promote inclusive and diverse leadership.
The emergence of the Argan tree as an agricultural, pastoral, cultural, economic and ecological keystone species in Southern Morocco is considered to be linked to the settlement of agropastoral communities that favored its expansion. Nevertheless, the use and exploitation of Argan tree is documented by both few medieval written sources and archaeobotanical studies, from a single location, Îgîlîz (Toughmart, Morocco), a famous medieval site of the Anti-Atlas Mountains. Therefore, data remain scarce regarding the type of Argan communities exploited at this period. In order to document this question, a quantitative eco-anatomical approach aiming to understand variations of wood characters involved in sap conduction and reserve storage, is developed from modern samples collected in the area of Îgîlîz. Results show that diameter of branches and environmental factors are the major parameters explaining plasticity of wood anatomical characters. Quantitative eco-anatomical features of Argan archaeological charcoal confronted to two statistical models, allow assessing both the diameter of the branches from which it derives and the agro-ecological conditions of tree growth and development. This preliminary study may be considered as a relevant and pioneering work for the understanding of the eco-history of the Argan tree, and of its use and exploitation during the past. https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-021-90286-4
In vitro digestion studies often use animal digestive enzyme extracts as substitutes of human gastric and pancreatic secretions. Pancreatin from porcine origin is thus commonly used to provide relevant pancreatic enzymes such as proteases, amylase and lipase. Rabbit gastric extracts (RGE) have been recently introduced to provide gastric lipase in addition to pepsin. Before preparing simulated gastric and pancreatic extracts with targeted enzyme activities as described in in vitro digestion protocols, it is important to determine the activities of enzyme preparations using validated methods. The purpose of this inter-laboratory study within the INFOGEST network was to test the repeatability and reproducibility of lipase assays using the pH-stat technique for measuring the activities of gastric and pancreatic lipases from various sources. Twenty-one laboratories having different pH-stat devices received the same protocol with identical batches of RGE and two pancreatin sources. Lipase assays were performed using tributyrin as a substrate and three different amounts (50, 100 and 200 µg) of each enzyme preparation. The repeatability results within individual laboratories were satisfactory with coefficients of variation (CVs) ranging from 4 to 8% regardless of the enzyme amount tested. However, the inter-laboratory variability was high (CV > 15%) compared to existing standards for bioanalytical assays. We identified and weighted the contributions to inter-laboratory variability of several parameters associated with the various pH-stat equipment used in this study (e.g. reaction vessel volume and shape, stirring mode and rate, burette volume for the automated delivery of sodium hydroxide). Based on this, we established recommendations for improving the reproducibility of lipase assays using the pH-stat technique. Defining accurate and complete recommendations on how to correctly quantify activity levels of enzyme preparations is a gateway to promising comparison of in vitro data obtained from different laboratories following the same in vitro digestion protocol.
Atopic dermatitis (AD) is a common skin condition that has a significant impact on patients’ quality of life. Inadequate compliance with therapy often leads to treatment failure; therefore, therapeutic education is fundamental for AD management. However, conflicting strategies among caregivers, including pharmacists, lead to confusion and therapeutic nonadherence.
OBJECTIVE. The purpose of this multicenter retrospective study was to assess the MRCP features of Caroli disease (CD). MATERIALS AND METHODS. Sixty-six patients were identified from 2000 to 2019. The inclusion criteria were diagnosis of diffuse or localized CD mentioned in an imaging report, presence of intrahepatic bile duct (IHBD) dilatation, and having undergone an MRCP examination. The exclusion criteria included presence of obstructive proximal biliary stricture and having undergone hepatobiliary surgery other than cholecystectomy. Histopathology records were available for 53 of the 66 (80%) patients. Diffuse and localized diseases were compared by chi-square and t tests and Kaplan-Meier model. RESULTS. Forty-five patients had diffuse bilobar CD ((five pediatric patients [three girls and two boys] with a mean [± SD] age of 8 ± 5 years [range, 1-15 years] and 40 adult patients [26 men and 14 women] with a mean age of 35 ± 11 years [range, 20-62 years]) and 21 patients had localized disease (12 men and 9 women; mean age, 54 ± 14 years). Congenital hepatic fibrosis was found only in patients with diffuse CD (35/45 [78%]), as was a "central dot" sign (15/35 [43%]). IHBD dilatation with both saccular and fusiform features was found in 43 (96%) and the peripheral "funnel-shaped" sign in 41 (91%) of the 45 patients with diffuse CD but in none of the patients with localized disease (p < .001). Intrahepatic biliary calculi were found in all patients with localized disease but in only 16 of the 45 (36%) patients with diffuse CD (p < .001). Left liver atrophy was found in 18 of the 21 (86%) patients with localized disease and in none of the patients with diffuse CD (p < .001). The overall survival rate among patients with diffuse CD was significantly lower than that among patients with localized disease (p = .03). CONCLUSION. Diffuse IHBD dilatation with both saccular and fusiform features associated with the peripheral funnel-shaped sign can be used for the diagnosis of CD on MRCP. Localized IHBD dilatation seems to be mainly related to primary intrahepatic lithiasis.
Aryl‐ and hetaryl‐substituted acetylenes undergo regio‐ and stereoselective silylzincation by reaction with [(Me3Si)3Si]2Zn in the presence of Et2Zn (10–110 mol%) as additive. The distinctive feature of this addition across the C–C triple bond is its trans stereoselectivity. The radical nature of the silylzincation process is supported by diagnostic experiments and DFT calculations, which also corroborate the role played by steric effects to obtain that stereoselectivity. The procedure can be combined in one‐pot with the copper(I)‐mediated electrophilic substitution of the C(sp2)–Zn bond, with retention of the double bond geometry. This makes it valuable for the synthesis of stereodefined di‐ and trisubstituted vinylsilanes.
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