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Environmental health

Prithvi Simha, Cecilia Lalander, Anooj Ramanathan, C Vijayalakshmi, Jennifer R McConville, Björn Vinnerås, M Ganesapillai
Sanitation systems based on source separation and valorisation of human urine can improve the environmental sustainability of wastewater management. Yet, the social acceptability of such new, resource-oriented sanitation practices have not been assessed systematically. We attempt to address this research gap by reporting the findings of a survey conducted at a South Indian university that evaluated support for urine recycling among 1252 Indian consumers. We place our findings in the context of the Theory of Planned Behaviour, quantify consumer attitude to urine recycling through an exploratory numerical approach, and identify explanatory factors that shape consumer beliefs and perceptions...
July 4, 2018: Water Research
James C Stegen, Eric M Bottos, Janet K Jansson
Microbiomes impact nearly all systems on Earth, and despite vast differences among systems, we contend that it is possible and highly beneficial to develop a unified conceptual framework for understanding microbiome dynamics that is applicable across systems. The ability to robustly predict and control environmental and human microbiomes would provide impactful opportunities to sustain and improve the health of ecosystems and humans alike. Doing so requires understanding the processes governing microbiome temporal dynamics, which currently presents an enormous challenge...
July 11, 2018: Current Opinion in Microbiology
Jia Xue, Kevin Caton, Samendra Sherchan
Naegleria fowleri in recreational waters is a serious health threat. A rapid and accurate method to determine this pathogen in water is vital to develop effective control strategies. In this study, we compared two molecular methods: droplet digital polymerase chain reaction (ddPCR) and quantitative PCR (qPCR) assays in identifying N. fowleri from clinical and environmental samples. Strong agreement between ddPCR and qPCR methods over clinical DNA samples was observed. The limit of detection (LOD) for ddPCR and qPCR assays were 2...
July 14, 2018: Letters in Applied Microbiology
Katherine E Bathgate, James R Bagley, Edward Jo, Robert J Talmadge, Irene S Tobias, Lee E Brown, Jared W Coburn, Jose A Arevalo, Nancy L Segal, Andrew J Galpin
INTRODUCTION: Physical health and function depend upon both genetic inheritance and environmental factors (e.g., exercise training). PURPOSE: To enhance the understanding of heritability/adaptability, we explored the skeletal muscle health and physiological performance of monozygotic (MZ) twins with > 30 years of chronic endurance training vs. no specific/consistent exercise. METHODS: One pair of male MZ twins (age = 52 years; Trained Twin, TT; Untrained Twin, UT) underwent analyses of: (1) anthropometric characteristics and blood profiles, (2) markers of cardiovascular and pulmonary health, and (3) skeletal muscle size, strength, and power and molecular markers of muscle health...
July 14, 2018: European Journal of Applied Physiology
Jeanne A Pierzynski, Yuanqing Ye, Scott M Lippman, Maria A Rodriguez, Xifeng Wu, Michelle A T Hildebrandt
Patient reported health-related quality of life (QOL) is a major component of the overall well-being of cancer patients, with links to prognosis. In 6,420 lung cancer patients, we identified patient characteristics and genetic determinants of QOL. Patient responses from the SF-12 questionnaire was used to calculate normalized Physical Component Summary (PCS) and Mental Component Summary (MCS) scores. Further, we analyzed 218 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in the p38 MAPK signaling pathway, a key mediator of response to cellular and environmental stress, as genetic determinants of QOL in a subset of the study population (N = 641)...
July 13, 2018: Scientific Reports
Derek Rothenheber, Stephen Jones
Fecal pollution at coastal beaches requires management efforts to address public health and economic concerns. Fecal-borne bacterial concentrations are influenced by different fecal sources, environmental conditions, and ecosystem reservoirs, making their public health significance convoluted. In this study, we sought to delineate the influences of these factors on enterococci concentrations in southern Maine coastal recreational waters. Weekly water samples and water quality measurements were conducted at freshwater, estuarine, and marine beach sites from June through September 2016...
July 13, 2018: Applied and Environmental Microbiology
Peter Day, Richard M Green, Melanie Gross, Lennart Weltje, James R Wheeler
The ongoing debate concerning the regulation of endocrine disruptors, has increasingly led to questions concerning the current testing of chemicals and whether this is adequate for the assessment of potential endocrine disrupting effects. This paper describes the current testing approaches for plant protection product (PPP) active substances in the European Union and the United States and how they relate to the assessment of endocrine disrupting properties for human and environmental health. This includes a discussion of whether the current testing approaches cover modalities other than the estrogen, androgen, thyroid and steroidogenesis (EATS) pathways, sensitive windows of exposure, adequate assessment of human endocrine disorders and wildlife species, and the determination of thresholds for endocrine disruption...
July 10, 2018: Toxicology Letters
F J Castañeda-Montes, M Avitia, O Sepúlveda-Robles, V Cruz-Sánchez, L Kameyama, G Guarneros, A E Escalante
Pseudomonas aeruginosa is one of the most important pathogens worldwide. Population genetics studies have shown that the P. aeruginosa population has an epidemic structure with highly conserved clonal complexes. Nonetheless, epidemiological studies of P. aeruginosa have been historically absent or infrequent in developing countries, in which different medical treatments, conditions and infrastructure may have an impact in population dynamics and evolutionary outcomes, including antibiotic resistance profiles...
July 10, 2018: Infection, Genetics and Evolution
Lars Bossen, Alessio Gerussi, Vasiliki Lygoura, George F Mells, Marco Carbone, Pietro Invernizzi
Autoimmune liver diseases (AILDs) are complex conditions, which arise from the interaction between a genetic susceptibility and unknown environmental triggers. They represent a relevant cause of liver failure and liver transplantation worldwide. As a testimony of our progress in understanding the biology of AILDs and the disease progression is the overall median survival which has increased over the last decade. However, there are still major challenges such as the lack of therapies and surveillance strategies in primary sclerosing cholangitis (PSC), the management and treatment of non-responders to first-line therapies in primary biliary cholangitis (PBC) and the need for tailoring immunosuppressive drugs in autoimmune hepatitis (AIH)...
July 10, 2018: Autoimmunity Reviews
Mohamed Amine Hachani, Amel Dhib, Afef Fathalli, Boutheina Ziadi, Souad Turki, Lotfi Aleya
The spatio-temporal distribution of epiphytic and planktonic microalgae coupled with environmental factors was investigated for a one-year period in the Gulf of Tunis (northeastern Tunisia). Harmful microalgae assemblages were dominated by three toxic epiphytic dinoflagellates: Ostreopsis sp., Prorocentrum lima and Coolia monotis. They were observed, both on macrophytes (1.03 × 105 cells g-1 FW ; 1.3 × 104 cells g-1 FW and 865 cells g-1 FW, respectively) and in the water column (2.35 × 104 cells L-1 ; 3...
July 2018: Harmful Algae
Katie Thomson, Frances Hillier-Brown, Adam Todd, Courtney McNamara, Tim Huijts, Clare Bambra
BACKGROUND: Socio-economic inequalities are associated with unequal exposure to social, economic and environmental risk factors, which in turn contribute to health inequalities. Understanding the impact of specific public health policy interventions will help to establish causality in terms of the effects on health inequalities. METHODS: Systematic review methodology was used to identify systematic reviews from high-income countries that describe the health equity effects of upstream public health interventions...
July 13, 2018: BMC Public Health
Xinli Liu, Yuzhen Wang, Yujun Song
Heavy metal ions monitoring in water is practically significant for the environment and the human health. In this work, a lab-on-a-chip biosensor was developed for multiplexed quantitation of heavy metal ions by the integration of triple-channel volumetric bar-chart chip with DNA-nanoparticle probes. This method possesses the capability for rapid detection of Cu2+ , Pb2+ and Hg2+ simultaneously with high sensitivity, selectivity and accuracy. Due to the highly catalase-like activity of the urchin-like platinum nanoparticles, this sensor exhibits high sensitivity with the detection limits of 1...
June 25, 2018: Biosensors & Bioelectronics
Nora Braak, Rebecca Neve, Andrew K Jones, Melanie Gibbs, Casper J Breuker
Pesticides, in particular insecticides, can be very beneficial but have also been found to have harmful side effects on non-target insects. Butterflies play an important role in ecosystems, are well monitored and are recognised as good indicators of environmental health. The amount of information already known about butterfly ecology and the increased availability of genomes make them a very valuable model for the study of non-target effects of pesticide usage. The effects of pesticides are not simply linear, but complex through their interactions with a large variety of biotic and abiotic factors...
July 4, 2018: Environmental Pollution
E M Symonds, Karena H Nguyen, V J Harwood, M Breitbart
An enteric virus surrogate and reliable domestic wastewater tracer is needed to manage microbial quality of food and water as (waste)water reuse becomes more prevalent in response to population growth, urbanization, and climate change. Pepper mild mottle virus (PMMoV), a plant pathogen found at high concentrations in domestic wastewater, is a promising surrogate for enteric viruses that has been incorporated into over 29 water- and food-related microbial quality and technology investigations around the world...
June 30, 2018: Water Research
Neal Fann, Kirk R Baker, Elizabeth A W Chan, Alison Eyth, Alexander Macpherson, Elizabeth Miller, Jennifer Snyder
Incomplete information regarding emissions from oil and natural gas production has historically made it challenging to characterize the air quality or air pollution-related health impacts for this sector in the United States. Using an emissions inventory for the oil and natural gas sector that reflects information regarding the level and distribution of PM2.5 and ozone precursor emissions, we simulate annual mean PM2.5 and summer season average daily 8 h maximum ozone concentrations with the Comprehensive Air-Quality Model with extensions (CAMx)...
July 13, 2018: Environmental Science & Technology
Michal Stat, Jeffrey John, Joseph D DiBattista, Stephen J Newman, Michael Bunce, Euan S Harvey
Monitoring communities of fish is important for the management and health of fisheries and marine ecosystems. Baited remote underwater video systems (BRUVs) are one of the most effective non-destructive techniques for sampling bony fishes and elasmobranchs (sharks, rays, and skates). However, while BRUVs can sample visually conspicuous biota, some taxa are under-sampled or not recorded at all. Here, we compared the diversity of fishes characterised using BRUVs with metabarcoding of environmental DNA (eDNA) extracted from seawater...
July 13, 2018: Conservation Biology: the Journal of the Society for Conservation Biology
Mona Loraine M Barabad, Wonseok Jung, Michael E Versoza, Yong-Il Lee, Kyomin Choi, Duckshin Park
Vinyl samples were burned in a controlled environment to determine the characteristics of particulate matter (PM) and volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions during the combustion process. Open burning of plastic or vinyl products poses several environmental and health risks in developed and developing countries, due to the release of high concentrations of harmful pollutants. The production of fine and ultrafine particles was significant. At a heat flux of 25 kW/m², the production of PM of 0.35 μm in size was highest at 63...
July 2, 2018: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Habiba Lais, Premesh S Lowe, Tat-Hean Gan, Luiz C Wrobel, Jamil Kanfoud
The accumulation of fouling within a structure is a well-known and costly problem across many industries. The build-up is dependent on the environmental conditions surrounding the fouled structure. Many attempts have been made to detect fouling accumulation in critical engineering structures and to optimize the application of power ultrasonic fouling removal procedures, i.e., flow monitoring, ultrasonic guided waves and thermal imaging. In recent years, the use of ultrasonic guided waves has been identified as a promising technology to detect fouling deposition/growth...
July 2, 2018: Sensors
Aleksandra Ratajczak, Karol Ratajczak, Wojciech Feleszko
Environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) exposure is considered an important public health issue in pediatric population. In this study, we aimed to investigate parents' knowledge on side effects of passive smoking and counseling for parental smoking among pediatricians and family practitioners. Participants were biological parents of pediatric patients up to the age of 18 years old who attended Pediatric Hospital of Medical University of Warsaw. The questionnaire included 28 questions and queries on environmental tobacco smoke in children's environment...
July 2, 2018: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Delphine Kawecki, Paul Scheeder, Bernd Nowack
The omnipresence of plastics in our lives and their ever increasing application range continuously raise the re-quirements for the monitoring of environmental and health impacts related to both plastics and their additives. In this work we present a static probabilistic material flow analysis of seven polymers through the European and Swiss anthropospheres to provide a strong basis for exposure assessments of polymer-related impacts, which ne-cessitates that the plastic flows from production to use and finally to waste management are well understood...
July 13, 2018: Environmental Science & Technology
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