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Built Environment

Simon H Williams, Xiaoyu Che, Joel A Garcia, John D Klena, Bohyun Lee, Dorothy Muller, Werner Ulrich, Robert M Corrigan, Stuart Nichol, Komal Jain, W Ian Lipkin
The microbiome of wild Mus musculus (house mouse), a globally distributed invasive pest that resides in close contact with humans in urban centers, is largely unexplored. Here, we report analysis of the fecal virome of house mice in residential buildings in New York City, NY. Mice were collected at seven sites in Manhattan, Queens, Brooklyn, and the Bronx over a period of 1 year. Unbiased high-throughput sequencing of feces revealed 36 viruses from 18 families and 21 genera, including at least 6 novel viruses and 3 novel genera...
April 17, 2018: MBio
Simon H Williams, Xiaoyu Che, Ashley Paulick, Cheng Guo, Bohyun Lee, Dorothy Muller, Anne-Catrin Uhlemann, Franklin D Lowy, Robert M Corrigan, W Ian Lipkin
House mice ( Mus musculus ) thrive in large urban centers worldwide. Nonetheless, little is known about the role that they may play in contributing to environmental contamination with potentially pathogenic bacteria. Here, we describe the fecal microbiome of house mice with emphasis on detection of pathogenic bacteria and antimicrobial resistance genes by molecular methods. Four hundred sixteen mice were collected from predominantly residential buildings in seven sites across New York City over a period of 13 months...
April 17, 2018: MBio
Karandeep Singh, Chang-Won Ahn, Euihyun Paik, Jang Won Bae, Chun-Hee Lee
Artificial life (ALife) examines systems related to natural life, its processes, and its evolution, using simulations with computer models, robotics, and biochemistry. In this article, we focus on the computer modeling, or "soft," aspects of ALife and prepare a framework for scientists and modelers to be able to support such experiments. The framework is designed and built to be a parallel as well as distributed agent-based modeling environment, and does not require end users to have expertise in parallel or distributed computing...
April 17, 2018: Artificial Life
Xiaopeng Guo, Dongfang Ren, Xiaodan Guo
Recently, Chinese state environmental protection administration has brought out several PM10 reduction policies to control the coal consumption strictly and promote the adjustment of power structure. Under this new policy environment, a suitable analysis method is required to simulate the upcoming major shift of China's electric power structure. Firstly, a complete system dynamics model is built to simulate China's evolution path of power structure with constraints of PM10 reduction considering both technical and economical factors...
April 16, 2018: Environmental Science and Pollution Research International
Helen Pineo, Ketevan Glonti, Harry Rutter, Nici Zimmermann, Paul Wilkinson, Michael Davies
Urban health indicator (UHI) tools provide evidence about the health impacts of the physical urban environment which can be used in built environment policy and decision-making. Where UHI tools provide data at the neighborhood (and lower) scale they can provide valuable information about health inequalities and environmental deprivation. This review performs a census of UHI tools and explores their nature and characteristics (including how they represent, simplify or address complex systems) to increase understanding of their potential use by municipal built environment policy and decision-makers...
April 16, 2018: Journal of Urban Health: Bulletin of the New York Academy of Medicine
Frédérique Pasquali, Federica Palma, Laurent Guillier, Alex Lucchi, Alessandra De Cesare, Gerardo Manfreda
Listeria monocytogenes is a foodborne pathogen adapted to survive and persist in multiple environments. Following two previous studies on prevalence and virulence of L. monocytogenes ST121 and ST14 repeatedly collected in a the same rabbit-meat processing plant, the research questions of the present study were to: (1) assess persistence of L. monocytogenes isolates from the rabbit-plant; (2) select genes associated to physiological adaptation to the food-processing environment; (3) compare presence/absence/truncation of these genes in newly sequenced and publicly available ST121 and ST14 genomes...
2018: Frontiers in Microbiology
Cinta Gomez-Silvan, Marcus H Y Leung, Katherine A Grue, Randeep Kaur, Xinzhao Tong, Patrick K H Lee, Gary L Andersen
BACKGROUND: A majority of indoor residential microbes originate from humans, pets, and outdoor air and are not adapted to the built environment (BE). Consequently, a large portion of the microbes identified by DNA-based methods are either dead or metabolically inactive. Although many exceptions have been noted, the ribosomal RNA fraction of the sample is more likely to represent either viable or metabolically active cells. We examined methodological variations in sample processing using a defined, mock BE microbial community to better understand the scope of technique-based vs...
April 16, 2018: Microbiome
Claudio R Nigg, Eve Kutchman, Katie Amato, Christine A Schaefer, Guangxiang Zhang, Md Mahabub Ul Anwar, Peter Anthamatten, Raymond C Browning, Lois Brink, James Hill
Understanding the impacts of the built environment on physical activity (PA) is essential to promoting children's PA. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of schoolyard renovations and a PA recess curriculum alone and in combination on children's PA. This was a 2 (learning landscape [LL] vs. non-LL) × 2 (curriculum intervention vs. no curriculum intervention) factorial design with random assignment to the curriculum intervention, and six elementary schools per condition. PA outcomes were assessed preprogram, mid-program, immediate postprogram, and one year postprogram...
April 10, 2018: Translational Behavioral Medicine
Edward R Duranty, Timothy J Roosendaal, Stan G Pitman, Joseph C Tucker, Stanley L Owsley, Jonathan D Suter, Kyle James Alvine
High pressure hydrogen gas is known to adversely affect metallic components of compressors, valves, hoses, and actuators. However, relatively little is known about the effects of high pressure hydrogen on the polymer sealing and barrier materials also found within these components. More study is required in order to determine the compatibility of common polymer materials found in the components of the hydrogen fuel delivery infrastructure with high pressure hydrogen. As a result, it is important to consider the changes in physical properties such as friction and wear in situ while the polymer is exposed to high pressure hydrogen...
March 31, 2018: Journal of Visualized Experiments: JoVE
Jakub Łuczak, Bogdan R Bulka
We consider a model of two interacting always-on, exchange-only qubits for which
 controlled phase (CPHASE), controlled NOT (CNOT),
 quantum Fourier transform (QFT) and SWAP operations can be implemented only in a
 few electrical pulses in a nanosecond time scale. Each qubit is built of
 three quantum dots (TQD) in a triangular geometry with three electron spins which are
 always kept coupled by exchange interactions only.
 The qubit states are encoded in a doublet subspace and are
 fully electrically controlled by a voltage applied to gate
April 16, 2018: Journal of Physics. Condensed Matter: An Institute of Physics Journal
Ilaria Laudadio, Valerio Fulci, Francesca Palone, Laura Stronati, Salvatore Cucchiara, Claudia Carissimi
The analysis of microbiota composition in humans, animals, and built environments is important because of emerging roles and applications in a broad range of disease and ecological phenotypes. Next Generation Sequencing is the current method of choice to characterize microbial community composition. The taxonomic profile of a microbial community can be obtained either by shotgun analysis of random DNA fragments or through 16S ribosomal RNA gene (rDNA) amplicon sequencing. It has been previously shown that the 16S rDNA amplicon sequencing approach yields quantitatively and qualitatively different results compared to shotgun metagenomics when the two techniques are used to assess microbial community composition on the same samples...
April 2018: Omics: a Journal of Integrative Biology
John E Cobb, Jean Leblond, Frédéric S Dumont, Luc Noreau
BACKGROUND: Various types of limitations on community participation are experienced by people with spinal cord injury (SCI). OBJECTIVES: To determine: 1) the perceived influence of six intrinsic/extrinsic factors (i.e. physical impairment, emotional condition, thinking skills, environment, lack of assistance, discrimination) on participation in 26 life activities, 2) if this influence varied based on extent of participation, and 3) if personal or environmental characteristics influenced perceptions...
April 3, 2018: Disability and Health Journal
Preston Ohta, Luis Valle, Jonathan King, Kevin Low, Jaehyun Yi, Christopher G Atkeson, Yong-Lae Park
As robots begin to interact with humans and operate in human environments, safety becomes a major concern. Conventional robots, although reliable and consistent, can cause injury to anyone within its range of motion. Soft robotics, wherein systems are made to be soft and mechanically compliant, are thus a promising alternative due to their lightweight nature and ability to cushion impacts, but current designs often sacrifice accuracy and usefulness for safety. We, therefore, have developed a bioinspired robotic arm combining elements of rigid and soft robotics such that it exhibits the positive qualities of both, namely compliance and accuracy, while maintaining a low weight...
April 2018: Soft Robotics
Leah H Schinasi, Amy H Auchincloss, Christopher B Forrest, Ana V Diez Roux
PURPOSE: We conducted a systematic review of literature published on January 2000-May 2017 that spatially linked electronic health record (EHR) data with environmental information for population health research. METHODS: We abstracted information on the environmental and health outcome variables and the methods and data sources used. RESULTS: The automated search yielded 669 articles; 128 articles are included in the full review. The number of articles increased by publication year; the majority (80%) were from the United States, and the mean sample size was approximately 160,000...
March 21, 2018: Annals of Epidemiology
Margaux Sanchez, Albert Ambros, Carles Milà, Maëlle Salmon, Kalpana Balakrishnan, Sankar Sambandam, V Sreekanth, Julian D Marshall, Cathryn Tonne
Land-use regression (LUR) has been used to model local spatial variability of particulate matter in cities of high-income countries. Performance of LUR models is unknown in less urbanized areas of low-/middle-income countries (LMICs) experiencing complex sources of ambient air pollution and which typically have limited land use data. To address these concerns, we developed LUR models using satellite imagery (e.g., vegetation, urbanicity) and manually-collected data from a comprehensive built-environment survey (e...
April 4, 2018: Science of the Total Environment
Cheryl Kerfeld, Tracy Jirikowic, Katheryn J Allyn, Murray E Maitland
BACKGROUND: Through play, children develop motor, cognitive, social, and other life skills. Play barriers can impede physical and psychosocial benefits. OBJECTIVES: We describe participation in active play, fundamental movement skills, play environment characteristics, and potential play barriers for school-aged children (6-12 years) who use lower extremity prostheses. STUDY DESIGN: Cross-sectional questionnaire study. METHODS: A questionnaire was developed and administered online to parents of children 6-12 years who use lower extremity prostheses...
April 1, 2018: Prosthetics and Orthotics International
Sulaiman A Alshammari, Yousif S Alamri, Fatimah S Rabhan, Aljoharah A Alabdullah, Noura A Alsanie, Fatma A Almarshad, Amal N Alhaqbani
There is high public health alert in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia concerning Zika virus infection. So far, there is no reported outbreak. So are we at risk of this disease? Reviewing the literature of recent outbreaks of other infectious diseases in Saudi Arabia may clarify the situation. It is evident that there is some similarity between Zika and dengue regarding vector ( Aedes aegypti ) which is available in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Furthermore, they have similar transmission process and the required environment for infection...
January 2018: International Journal of Health Sciences
Guang-Hui Chen, Zhi Luo, Chuan-Chuan Wei, Dan-Dan Li, Ya-Xiong Pan
Excessive Zn in the aquatic environment can be toxic and causes dysfunction in Zn homeostasis for fish, which ultimately influences the function of various biological processes. Zn homeostasis is controlled by Zn transporters. This study cloned and characterized the full-length cDNA sequences of six Zn transport-relevant genes (ZnT1, ZnT5, ZnT7, ZIP4, ZIP5 and MTF-1) from yellow catfish Pelteobagrus fulvidraco. The six genes share similar domains to their corresponding members of mammals. Their mRNA amounts were widely existent across eight tissues (intestine, liver, brain, heart, gill, muscle, spleen and mesenteric fat), but relatively predominant in the liver and intestine...
April 4, 2018: Biometals: An International Journal on the Role of Metal Ions in Biology, Biochemistry, and Medicine
Xiaozheng Mou, Han Wang
This paper proposes a wide-baseline stereo-based static obstacle mapping approach for unmanned surface vehicles (USVs). The proposed approach eliminates the complicated calibration work and the bulky rig in our previous binocular stereo system, and raises the ranging ability from 500 to 1000 m with a even larger baseline obtained from the motion of USVs. Integrating a monocular camera with GPS and compass information in this proposed system, the world locations of the detected static obstacles are reconstructed while the USV is traveling, and an obstacle map is then built...
April 4, 2018: Sensors
Heidi L Lujan, Stephen E DiCarlo
Spirometers are used globally to diagnose respiratory diseases, and most commercially available spirometers "correct" for race. "Race correction" is built into the software of spirometers. To evaluate pulmonary function and to make recordings, the operator must enter the subject's race. In fact, the Joint Working Party of the American Thoracic Society/European Respiratory Society recommends the use of race- and ethnic-specific reference values. In the United States, spirometers apply correction factors of 10-15% for individuals labeled "Black" and 4-6% for people labeled "Asian...
June 1, 2018: Advances in Physiology Education
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