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Efficacy and safety of ultrasound-guided above-knee lateral approach for popliteal sciatic nerve block in surgeries below the knee: a randomized controlled trial.

Ann Palliat Med 2021 May 10. Epub 2021 May 10.

Department of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine, The First Affiliated Hospital with Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing, China.

Background: Ultrasound guidance has become a standard method for detection of nerve structures in regional anesthesia. During ultrasound-guided blockade, to identify anatomical structures is crucial but can be challenging. In clinical practice, we find a wide difference in the visibility score of the sciatic nerve (SN) through different approaches. Read More

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Ras GEF Mouse Models for the Analysis of Ras Biology and Signaling.

Methods Mol Biol 2021 ;2262:361-395

Centro de Investigación del Cáncer-Instituto de Biología Molecular y Celular del Cáncer (CSIC-Universidad de Salamanca) and CIBERONC, Salamanca, Spain.

Animal models have become in recent years a crucial tool to understand the physiological and pathological roles of many cellular proteins. They allow analysis of the functional consequences of [1] complete or partial (time- or organ-limited) removal of specific proteins (knockout animals), [2] the exchange of a wild-type allele for a mutant or truncated version found in human illnesses (knock-in), or [3] the effect of overexpression of a given protein in the whole body or in specific organs (transgenic mice). In this regard, the study of phenotypes in Ras GEF animal models has allowed researchers to find specific functions for otherwise very similar proteins, uncovering their role in physiological contexts such as memory formation, lymphopoiesis, photoreception, or body homeostasis. Read More

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January 2021

In vitro reconstitution reveals major differences between human and bacterial cytochrome c synthases.

Elife 2021 May 11;10. Epub 2021 May 11.

Department of Biology, Washington University in St. Louis, St. Louis, United States.

Cytochromes c are ubiquitous heme proteins in mitochondria and bacteria, all possessing a CXXCH (CysXxxXxxCysHis) motif with covalently attached heme. We describe the first in vitro reconstitution of cytochrome c biogenesis using purified mitochondrial (HCCS) and bacterial (CcsBA) cytochrome c synthases. We employ apocytochrome c and peptide analogs containing CXXCH as substrates, examining recognition determinants, thioether attachment, and subsequent release and folding of cytochrome c. Read More

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Numerical models of spinal cord trauma: The effect of cerebrospinal fluid pressure and epidural fat on the results.

J Neurotrauma 2021 May 11. Epub 2021 May 11.

Tel Aviv University, 26745, Ramat Aviv, Tel Aviv, Tel Aviv, Israel, 69978;

Spinal cord injury (SCI) is commonly caused by traumatic mechanical damage. While numerical models can help predicting the mechanics of SCI without putting the subjects in danger, previous studies did not focus on alternations in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) pressure and did not account for the presence of epidural fat. This study aims to numerically compare the mechanical behavior of human spine when subjected to contusion and burst fracture with varying CSF pressure, either normal or elevated pressure that represent intracranial hypertension. Read More

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Beyond cognitive templates: re-examining template metaphors used for animal recognition and navigation.

Integr Comp Biol 2021 May 10. Epub 2021 May 10.

Department of Biological Sciences, University of Cincinnati.

The term 'cognitive template' originated from work in human-based cognitive science to describe a literal, stored, neural representation used in recognition tasks. As the study of cognition has expanded to non-human animals, the term has diffused to describe a wider range of animal cognitive tools and strategies that guide action through the recognition of and discrimination between external states. One potential reason for this non-standardized meaning and variable employment is that researchers interested in the broad range of animal recognition tasks enjoy the simplicity of the cognitive template concept and have allowed it to become shorthand for many dissimilar or unknown neural processes without deep scrutiny of how this metaphor might comport with underlying neurophysiology. Read More

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Personal belief exemptions for school-entry vaccinations, vaccination rates, and academic achievement.

J Health Econ 2021 Apr 24;78:102464. Epub 2021 Apr 24.

Montana State University, United States; Institute for Labor Studies (IZA), Germany. Electronic address:

Nonmedical exemptions from school-entry vaccine mandates are receiving increased policy and public health scrutiny. This paper examines how expanding the availability of exemptions influences vaccination rates in early childhood and academic achievement in middle school. We leverage 2003 legislation that granted personal belief exemptions (PBE) in Texas and Arkansas, two states that previously allowed exemptions only for medical or religious regions. Read More

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Decreasing Salt in Hospital Meals Reduced Energy Intake in Elderly Japanese Inpatients.

J Nutr Sci Vitaminol (Tokyo) 2021 ;67(2):105-110

Jumonji University.

Japanese salt consumption is high, about 10 g salt/d. Low salt intake reduces the risk of hypertension and cardiovascular disease. However, saltiness is an important taste in daily meals, greatly influencing eating habits. Read More

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January 2021

The Impact of Inpatient Telemedicine on Personal Protective Equipment Savings during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Cross-sectional Study.

J Med Internet Res 2021 May 1. Epub 2021 May 1.

Information Services, University of California San Diego Health, San Diego, US.

Unstructured: With the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic and shortage of adequate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), hospitals implemented inpatient telemedicine measures to ensure operational readiness and a safe working environment for clinicians. The utility and sustainability of inpatient telemedicine initiatives need to be evaluated as the number of COVID-19 inpatients is expected to continue declining. In this viewpoint, we describe the utilization of a rapidly deployed inpatient telemedicine workflow at a large academic medical center and discuss the potential impact on PPE savings. Read More

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Repulsive and attractive depletion forces mediated by nonadsorbing polyelectrolytes in the Donnan limit.

J Chem Phys 2021 Apr;154(16):164904

Laboratory of Physical Chemistry, Department of Chemical Engineering and Chemistry, Eindhoven University of Technology, P.O. Box 513, 5600 MB Eindhoven, The Netherlands.

In mixtures of colloids and nonadsorbing polyelectrolytes, a Donnan potential arises across the region between surfaces that are depleted of the polyelectrolyte and the rest of the system. This Donnan potential tends to shift the polyelectrolyte density profile toward the colloidal surface and leads to the local accumulation of polyelectrolytes. We derive a zero-field theory for the disjoining pressure between two parallel flat plates. Read More

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Sedentary Life and Reduced Mastication Impair Spatial Learning and Memory and Differentially Affect Dentate Gyrus Astrocyte Subtypes in the Aged Mice.

Front Neurosci 2021 15;15:632216. Epub 2021 Apr 15.

Laboratório de Investigações em Neurodegeneração e Infecção, Instituto de Ciências Biológicas, Hospital Universitário João de Barros Barreto, Universidade Federal do Pará, Belém, Brazil.

To explore the impact of reduced mastication and a sedentary lifestyle on spatial learning and memory in the aged mice, as well as on the morphology of astrocytes in the molecular layer of dentate gyrus (MolDG), different masticatory regimens were imposed. Control mice received a pellet-type hard diet, while the reduced masticatory activity group received a pellet diet followed by a powdered diet, and the masticatory rehabilitation group received a pellet diet, followed by powder diet and then a pellet again. To mimic sedentary or active lifestyles, mice were housed in an impoverished environment of standard cages or in an enriched environment. Read More

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Integration drives rapid phenotypic evolution in flatfishes.

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2021 May;118(18)

Department of Paleontology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109.

Evolutionary innovations are scattered throughout the tree of life, and have allowed the organisms that possess them to occupy novel adaptive zones. While the impacts of these innovations are well documented, much less is known about how these innovations arise in the first place. Patterns of covariation among traits across macroevolutionary time can offer insights into the generation of innovation. Read More

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Computer-aided search for 5-arylideneimidazolone anticancer agents able to overcome ABCB1-based multidrug resistance.

ChemMedChem 2021 Apr 30. Epub 2021 Apr 30.

Uniwersytet Jagiellonski w Krakowie Collegium Medicum, Dept. of Technology and Biotechnology of Drugs, ul. Medyczna 9, Not Available, 30-688, Cracow, POLAND.

ABCB1 modulation is an interesting strategy in search for new anticancer agents overcoming multidrug resistance (MDR). Hence,  17 new 5-arylideneimidazolones containing amine moiety, as potential ABCB1 inhibitors was designed, synthesized, and investigated. The series was tested in both, parental (PAR) and multidrug resistant (MDR) overproducing ABCB1, T-lymphoma cancer cells using cytotoxicity assay. Read More

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Effects of Different Patterns and Sources of Trace Elements on Laying Performance, Tissue Mineral Deposition, and Fecal Excretion in Laying Hens.

Animals (Basel) 2021 Apr 19;11(4). Epub 2021 Apr 19.

College of Animal Science and Technology, Hunan Agricultural University, No. 1 Nongda Road, Furong District, Changsha 410128, China.

This study was conducted to investigate the effects of different patterns and sources of Zn, Fe, Cu, Mn, and Se on performance, mineral deposition (liver, kidney, pancreas, spleen, pectorals muscle, and tibia), and excretion of laying hens, then to find an optimal dietary supplemental pattern of trace elements in laying hens. A total of 864 healthy laying hens with similar laying rate (Roman, 26-week-old) were randomly divided into nine treatments, with six replications of 16 birds per replication, including a control treatment and four patterns with different element sources (inorganic or organic): (1) Control treatment (basic diet without added extra trace minerals, CT); pattern 1, NRC (1994) recommended level (NRC-L): (2) inorganic minerals of NRC-L pattern (IN), (3) organic minerals of NRC-L pattern (ON); pattern 2, NY/T 33-2004 recommended level (NY/T-L): (4) inorganic minerals of NY/T-L pattern (IY), (5) organic minerals of NY/T-L pattern (OY); pattern 3, 50% NRC (1994) recommended level (50% NRC-L): (6) inorganic minerals of 50% NRC-L pattern (IHN), (7) organic minerals of 50% NRC-L pattern (OHN); pattern 4, the ratio of minerals in blood of laying hens was taken as the supplement proportion of trace elements, and Zn was supplemented depended on NRC recommended level (TLB): (8) inorganic minerals of TLB pattern (IB), (9) organic minerals of TLB pattern (OB). Two weeks were allowed for adjustment to the conditions and then measurements were made over eight weeks. Read More

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Toward a Comparison of Classical and New Privacy Mechanism.

Entropy (Basel) 2021 Apr 15;23(4). Epub 2021 Apr 15.

Engineering Department, Universidad del Pacífico, Lima 15076, Peru.

In the last decades, the development of interconnectivity, pervasive systems, citizen sensors, and Big Data technologies allowed us to gather many data from different sources worldwide. This phenomenon has raised privacy concerns around the globe, compelling states to enforce data protection laws. In parallel, privacy-enhancing techniques have emerged to meet regulation requirements allowing companies and researchers to exploit individual data in a privacy-aware way. Read More

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QuoVidi: An open-source web application for the organization of large-scale biological treasure hunts.

Ecol Evol 2021 Apr 28;11(8):3516-3526. Epub 2020 Dec 28.

Louvain Institute of Biomolecular Science and Technology School of Biology UCLouvain Louvain-la-Neuve Belgium.

Learning biology, and in particular systematics, requires learning a substantial amount of specific vocabulary, both for botanical and zoological studies. While crucial, the precise identification of structures serving as evolutionary traits and systematic criteria is not per se a highly motivating task for students. Teaching this in a traditional teaching setting is quite challenging especially with a large crowd of students to be kept engaged. Read More

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Rare iatrogenic iliac artery injury during lumbar disc surgery - a case report.

Pol Merkur Lekarski 2021 Apr;49(290):150-152

Department of Neurosurgery, Institute of Psychiatry and Neurology, Warsaw, Poland.

Damage to large abdominal vessels during lumbar discectomy surgery is a rare but life-threatening complication.

A Case Report: The authors present the case of a 57-year-old patient who received surgery for critical degenerative lumbal spinal stenosis on the L4-L5 level. The diagnosis was based on strong right sciatica and neurogenic claudication. Read More

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Could diagnostic and therapeutic delay affect the prognosis of gastrointestinal primary malignancies in the COVID-19 pandemic era? A literature review.

Minerva Surg 2021 Apr 23. Epub 2021 Apr 23.

General Surgery, San Giovanni Battista Hospital, USL Umbria 2, Foligno, Perugia, Italy -

Background: Emergency situations, as the Covid-19 pandemic that is striking the world nowadays, stress the national health systems which are forced to rapidly reorganizing their sources. Therefore, many elective diagnostic and surgical procedures are being suspended or significantly delayed. Moreover, patients might find it difficult to refer to physicians and delay the diagnostic and even the therapeutic procedures because of emotional or logistic problems. Read More

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Type 2 diabetes in general practice - a focus-group study.

Tidsskr Nor Laegeforen 2021 Apr 7;141(6). Epub 2021 Apr 7.

Background: The National Diabetes Plan 2017-21 has implemented measures to improve diagnosis and follow-up of persons with type 2 diabetes by the primary health services. The objective of this study was to explore the experiences and thoughts of Norwegian general practitioners (GPs) with regard to diagnosis and follow-up of this patient group.

Material And Method: In this qualitative study, three focus-group interviews were conducted with a total of 17 GPs. Read More

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A Method to Pre-Screen Rat Mammary Gland Whole-Mounts Prior To RNAscope.

J Mammary Gland Biol Neoplasia 2021 Apr 17. Epub 2021 Apr 17.

Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Genetics, University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, KY, USA.

RNAscope is a quantitative in situ gene expression measurement technique that preserves the spatial aspect of intact tissue; thus, allowing for comparison of specific cell populations and morphologies. Reliable and accurate measurement of gene expression in tissue is dependent on preserving RNA integrity and the quantitative nature of RNAscope. The purpose of this study was to determine if the quantitative nature of RNAscope was retained following processing and carmine staining of mammary gland whole-mounts, which are commonly used to identify lesions, such as hyperplasia and ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS). Read More

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Smoothing the transition of adolescents with CF from pediatric to adult care: Pre-transfer needs.

Arch Pediatr 2021 May 15;28(4):257-263. Epub 2021 Apr 15.

Filière muco CFTR 165, Hospices Civils de Lyon, chemin du Grand-Revoyet, 69310 Pierre-Bénite, France; Unité Transversale en Éducation Thérapeutique du Patient, University Grenoble-Alpes ThEMAS TIMC-IMAG (UMR CNRS 5525), Communaute d'Universités et Établissements Université Grenoble Alpes, 38400 Saint-Martin-d'Hères, France; CRCM pédiatrique UTEP, filière muco CFTR, Communaute d'Universités et Établissements Université Grenoble Alpes, CHU Grenoble Alpes UTEP BP 217, 38043 Grenoble, France.

Introduction: In France, the cystic fibrosis (CF) care pathway is performed in 45 CF centers, the life expectancy of patients has steadily increased, but to date there are no national recommendations for the transition from pediatric to adult care. The transition to an adult CF center still raises questions about the relevance of its organizational arrangements. The "SAFETIM need" study aimed to identify the organizational needs both of patients and of parents before the transfer to an adult CF center. Read More

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Plastic systemic inhibition controls amplitude while allowing phase pattern in a stochastic neural field model.

Phys Rev E 2021 Mar;103(3-1):032311

Department of Psychology and Djavad Mowafaghian Centre for Brain Health, 2136 West Mall, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada V6T 1Z4.

We investigate oscillatory phase pattern formation and amplitude control for a linearized stochastic neuron field model by simulating Mexican-hat-coupled stochastic processes. We find, for several choices of parameters, that spatial pattern formation in the temporal phases of the coupled processes occurs if and only if their amplitudes are allowed to grow unrealistically large. Stimulated by recent work on homeostatic inhibitory plasticity, we introduce static and plastic (adaptive) systemic inhibitory mechanisms to keep the amplitudes stochastically bounded. Read More

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The effect of eviction moratoria on the transmission of SARS-CoV-2.

Nat Commun 2021 04 15;12(1):2274. Epub 2021 Apr 15.

Program for Evolutionary Dynamics, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, USA.

Massive unemployment during the COVID-19 pandemic could result in an eviction crisis in US cities. Here we model the effect of evictions on SARS-CoV-2 epidemics, simulating viral transmission within and among households in a theoretical metropolitan area. We recreate a range of urban epidemic trajectories and project the course of the epidemic under two counterfactual scenarios, one in which a strict moratorium on evictions is in place and enforced, and another in which evictions are allowed to resume at baseline or increased rates. Read More

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Biculturalism, linguistic distance, and bilingual profile effects on the bilingual influence on cognition: A comprehensive multipopulation approach.

J Exp Psychol Gen 2021 Apr 15. Epub 2021 Apr 15.

South East European Research Center.

The idea that being bilingual benefits one's cognitive development and performance has been greatly challenged over the last years. If such an effect exists, as some studies continue to show, it might actually be restricted to particular contexts and bilingual profiles; not unlikely, considering the enormous diversity in the latter across the world. In this study, we assessed 4 different bilingual populations (N = 201) and 2 monolingual populations (N = 105), in the Balkan region. Read More

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Integration of Transformative Platforms for the Discovery of Causative Genes in Cardiovascular Diseases.

Cardiovasc Drugs Ther 2021 Jun 15;35(3):637-654. Epub 2021 Apr 15.

Department of Internal Medicine, University of Michigan Medical Center, 2800 Plymouth Rd, Ann Arbor, MI, 48109-2800, USA.

Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) are powerful epidemiological tools to find genes and variants associated with cardiovascular diseases while follow-up biological studies allow to better understand the etiology and mechanisms of disease and assign causality. Improved methodologies and reduced costs have allowed wider use of bulk and single-cell RNA sequencing, human-induced pluripotent stem cells, organoids, metabolomics, epigenomics, and novel animal models in conjunction with GWAS. Read More

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The impact of identity by descent on fitness and disease in dogs.

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2021 Apr;118(16)

Department of Human Genetics, University of California, Los Angeles, CA 90095;

Domestic dogs have experienced population bottlenecks, recent inbreeding, and strong artificial selection. These processes have simplified the genetic architecture of complex traits, allowed deleterious variation to persist, and increased both identity-by-descent (IBD) segments and runs of homozygosity (ROH). As such, dogs provide an excellent model for examining how these evolutionary processes influence disease. Read More

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Profiling single-cell histone modifications using indexing chromatin immunocleavage sequencing.

Genome Res 2021 Apr 14. Epub 2021 Apr 14.

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, NIH

Recently, multiple single-cell assays were developed for detecting histone marks at the single-cell levels. These techniques are either limited by the low cell throughput or sparse reads which limit their applications. To address these problems, we introduce indexing single-cell immunocleavage sequencing (iscChIC-seq), a multiplex indexing method based on TdT terminal transferase and T4 DNA ligase mediated barcoding strategy and single-cell ChIC-seq, which is capable of readily analyzing histone modifications across tens of thousands of single cells in one experiment. Read More

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[Review and update of the criteria for objective cognitive impairment and its involvement in mild cognitive impairment and dementia].

Rev Neurol 2021 Apr;72(8):288-295

Universidad Miguel Hernández, Elche, España.

Introduction: The increase in the incidence and prevalence of dementia has changed the research focus towards its early identification. Several constructs have been developed in order to identify individuals with a high risk of developing dementia, with Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) being the term most commonly used in the last decades. However, diagnostic criteria for objective cognitive impairment have been modified using different methods and algorithms. Read More

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Developing a non-destructive metabarcoding protocol for detection of pest insects in bulk trap catches.

Sci Rep 2021 Apr 12;11(1):7946. Epub 2021 Apr 12.

Agriculture Victoria, AgriBio, Centre for AgriBioscience, 5 Ring Road, Bundoora, VIC, 3083, Australia.

Metabarcoding has the potential to revolutionise insect surveillance by providing high-throughput and cost-effective species identification of all specimens within mixed trap catches. Nevertheless, incorporation of metabarcoding into insect diagnostic laboratories will first require the development and evaluation of protocols that adhere to the specialised regulatory requirements of invasive species surveillance. In this study, we develop a multi-locus non-destructive metabarcoding protocol that allows sensitive detection of agricultural pests, and subsequent confirmation using traditional diagnostic techniques. Read More

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New laboratory criteria of the autoimmune inflammation in pulmonary sarcoidosis and tuberculosis.

Clin Immunol 2021 Apr 15:108724. Epub 2021 Apr 15.

St. Petersburg State University, St. Petersburg, Russia; Zabludowicz Center for Autoimmune Diseases, Sheba Medical Center, Tel HaShomer, Israel; Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel-Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel.

Sarcoidosis and tuberculosis have many clinical and laboratory similarities, which allowed researchers to assume the presence of common pathogenetic mechanisms in the development of both diseases. Recently, much attention has been paid to investigate the autoimmune origins in these pathologies. The aim of this study is to find out the characteristics of the autoinflammatory immune response in sarcoidosis and tuberculosis. Read More

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An integer programming model to assign patients based on mental health impact for tele-psychotherapy intervention during the Covid-19 emergency.

Health Care Manag Sci 2021 Apr 11. Epub 2021 Apr 11.

Human Cognitive Neuroscience, Psychology, The University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, United Kingdom.

The Covid-19 pandemic challenges healthcare systems worldwide while severely impacting mental health. As a result, the rising demand for psychological assistance during crisis times requires early and effective intervention. This contributes to the well-being of the public and front-line workers and prevents mental health disorders. Read More

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