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Lovelace D.,CNM
Journal of Midwifery and Women's Health | Year: 2016

Congenital uterine anomalies are more common than previously recognized. While many women will have no symptoms or problems, some women with congenital uterine anomalies have increased risks of adverse outcomes during pregnancy. This article presents a case study of a woman with a congenital uterine anomaly leading to spontaneous rupture of her unscarred uterus remote from term. The most common types of congenital uterine anomalies and their associated reproductive risks are reviewed. Evaluation of congenital uterine anomalies and management alternatives are discussed. © 2016 by the American College of Nurse-Midwives. Source

News Article
Site: http://phys.org/biology-news/

The bacterium might be transmitted by ticks. Credit: Philipp Berger/Vetmeduni Vienna Ticks can transmit various diseases to people and animals. Some well-known diseases spread by ticks include tick-borne encephalitis (TBE) and Lyme disease. Researchers at the Vetmeduni Vienna are hot on the trail of pathogens carried by ticks. The parasitologists recently discovered a new form of the bacterium Candidatus Neoehrlichia in a red fox from the Austrian state of Vorarlberg. The pathogen might also be transmittable to humans. The results were published in the journal Parasites & Vectors. Adnan Hodžić from the Institute of Parasitology at the Vetmeduni Vienna is searching for pathogens transmitted by ticks. He is especially interested in wild carnivores (foxes and wolves) which could be a possible reservoir and source of infection for humans and other animals. One special pathogen, first discovered in 1999 in Ixodes ricinus ticks, is the bacterium Candidatus Neoehrlichia mikurensis (CNM). The first case of CNM causing illness in a person was identified in the year 2010 in Sweden. Since then, the bacterium has been found several times in humans as well as in animals such as dogs, hedgehogs, shrews, bears, badgers, chamois and mouflons. In people, an infection with CNM bacteria causes fever, muscle and joint pain, and a higher risk for thrombosis and embolisms. Older and immunocompromised people are especially at risk. A second, related pathogen is Candidatus Neoehrlichia lotoris (CNL). So far, however, CNL has only been found in raccoons in the USA. Now Hodžić and his colleagues have discovered a new strain of Candidatus Neoehrlichia in a red fox from Vorarlberg, Austria. Genetically, the new find is situated somewhere between the two previously recognized forms. "Further study will be required for proper phylogenetic placement of the bacterium. What is certain, however, is that this could be a potential zoonotic pathogen, meaning that it could be transmittable to humans. But we still do not know the possible route of an infection and consequences on humans or pets," explains study leader Hans-Peter Führer. In 2014, the researchers collected 164 spleen samples from red foxes during routine hunting events in Tyrol and Vorarlberg. Genetic analysis revealed a female fox from Feldkirch as carrying the new bacterial strain. Candidatus Neoehrlichia mikurensis causes flu-like symptoms in humans and pets such as dogs. "The illness is not yet well-known among physicians, however, and therefore often remains undiagnosed," says Hodžić. "We want to raise awareness of this pathogen. Given the relevant symptoms, physicians should know what to do. An infection is best treated with the antibiotic Doxycyclin." The parasitologist Hodžić plans to conduct further research on wild animals in the future. The distribution of ticks in Europe will also require further study. "The monitoring of tick-borne diseases is becoming increasingly important," Hodžić points out. More information: Adnan Hodžić et al. Candidatus Neoehrlichia sp. in an Austrian fox is distinct from Candidatus Neoehrlichia mikurensis, but closer related to Candidatus Neoehrlichia lotoris, Parasites & Vectors (2015). DOI: 10.1186/s13071-015-1163-0

The microwave-assisted strategy works by increasing the space, and therefore decreasing the interaction, between individual layers of MoS2 nanosheets. This exposes a larger fraction of reactive sites along the edges of these surfaces where hydrogen can be produced. Atomistic first-principles calculations show that the increase in spacing between the layers changes the electronic and chemical properties of these edge sites, making them more effective in producing hydrogen. The strategy was demonstrated by a small group of researchers at the Center for Nanoscale Materials (CNM), a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science User Facility based at DOE's Argonne National Laboratory. "The microwave-assisted strategy could be a viable way to design advanced molybdenum disulfide catalysts for hydrogen production and hydrogen fuel cells," said Yugang Sun, a nanoscience scientist in Argonne's Nanoscience and Technology Division. "Microwave-synthesized nanostructured MoS2 exceeds the reactivity and stability levels of unmodified MoS2. Microwave-assisted synthesis is also a greener strategy when compared to conventional heating methods." Microwave energy is more efficient than conventional heating because it focuses its electromagnetic waves only on the material being treated and provides quicker, more even heating of a material's interior and exterior surfaces. Conventional or surface heating is slower than microwave heating and fails to achieve the desired result because it generates different temperatures in a material's interior compared with its surface area. MoS2 is a common industrial catalyst that is used as a dry lubricant and in petroleum refining. It is one of a small handful of promising, Earth-abundant materials that could provide low-cost alternatives to platinum-based catalysts. Platinum is an extremely efficient catalyst for splitting water into hydrogen and oxygen, but its high-cost and scarcity limit its widespread use for hydrogen production and in hydrogen fuel cells. This method will be extended to synthesize nanostructured MoS2 hybridized with other materials that can strongly interact with MoS2 to influence its electronic structures and reactivity, to further improve the catalytic performance for producing hydrogen. The research paper, "Edge-terminated molybdenum disulfide with a 9.04-Å interlayer spacing for electrochemical hydrogen production," was published in Nature Communications. Argonne's Minrui Gao, Maria K.Y. Chan, and Yugang Sun are co-authors. This research used several CNM capabilities including materials synthesis; electrocatalysis studies; the high-performance computing cluster Carbon; and characterization via X-ray diffraction, high-resolution transmission electron microscopy, Raman spectroscopy, and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy. More information: Min-Rui Gao et al. Edge-terminated molybdenum disulfide with a 9.4-Å interlayer spacing for electrochemical hydrogen production, Nature Communications (2015). DOI: 10.1038/ncomms8493

News Article
Site: http://phys.org/chemistry-news/

These small assemblies of organic molecules have parts that are hydrophobic, or water-fearing, while other parts are hydrophilic, or water-loving. Because of their schizoid nature, micelles organize themselves into spheres that have their hydrophilic parts turned out while their hydrophobic parts are shielded inside. A new study from the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE's) Argonne National Laboratory has shown water can serve another previously undiscovered role as these micelles coalesce to spontaneously form long fibers. In a study led by Argonne nanoscientist Subramanian Sankaranarayanan and chemist Christopher Fry, both of Argonne's Center for Nanoscale Materials, supercomputer simulations and as well as lab-based experiments showed that water serves as an invisible cage for the growth of the micelle fiber. The study could help scientists to understand how light-harvesting molecules are incorporated into the micelle fiber as it assembles, which would be a key step to understanding some forms of artificial photosynthesis. "Until now, trying to understand where the light-harvesting molecules bind has been like trying to see how a square peg can fit in a round hole," said Sankaranarayanan. "By seeing the way in which the micelle fiber self-assembles, we can get a better understanding of how these kinds of light-harvesting systems are formed." Though micelles can be composed of several different types of organic molecules, the Argonne study specifically looked at those made of chains of amino acids. When micelles form, the water near the micelles becomes "strongly ordered," which means that the water molecules are all oriented in the same manner. This strong ordering causes the formation of beta sheets, which are planar protein regions along which the micelle fiber grows. In the experimental part of the study, Argonne chemist Christopher Fry used Sankaranarayanan's computational findings to examine how a certain class of light-harvesting molecules known as zinc porphyrins could possibly become incorporated into the fiber. "The results that came out of the simulations informed the areas I focused on in the lab," Fry said. "I was able to probe some of the effects that water has on the overall self-assembly process, and that was something that we didn't focus on in the lab before." "The water around the micelle stabilizes the structure, which enables the beta sheets to provide the platform for growth," Sankaranarayanan added. "The more ordered the water becomes, the more stable the fiber becomes." To effectively simulate the growth of the micelles and micelle fibers, Sankaranarayanan and his colleagues at the Argonne Leadership Computing Facility (ALCF) used two approaches to modeling on Mira, Argonne's 10-petaflop supercomputer. They ran both coarse-grained simulations, which showed more general dynamics over relatively long periods of time, as well as atomistic simulations, which showed the motion of individual water molecules over very brief stretches. "You need both of these views, and to be able to switch back and forth very quickly between them, in order to truly understand how the micelle fiber forms," Sankaranarayanan said. According to Fry, the next step of the research would involve using a template to assemble the fiber and the light-harvesting molecules simultaneously in such a way that they become naturally embedded in the fiber matrix. If successful, this advance could underlie improvements to organic components of some solar cells. "Can we make a material that would form part of a more efficient solar cell, that's the question," Fry said. "It's all about being able to use a small peptide to tune the efficiency." Both the CNM and ALCF are DOE Office of Science user facilities. A paper based on the study, "Water ordering controls the dynamic equilibrium of micelle-fiber formation in self-assembly of peptide amphiphiles," appeared in the August 24 edition of Nature Communications. Explore further: Researchers produce new photoactive micelles with potential applications in photofunctional dyes and sensors More information: Sanket A. Deshmukh et al, Water ordering controls the dynamic equilibrium of micelle–fibre formation in self-assembly of peptide amphiphiles, Nature Communications (2016). DOI: 10.1038/ncomms12367

Audette C.,CNM | Waterman J.,CNM
Journal of Midwifery and Women's Health | Year: 2010

Each year in the United States, approximately 80,000 women are diagnosed with gynecologic cancers. Cancer in the female reproductive organs affects sexual functioning in an estimated 50% of women with these cancers. Sexuality issues may persist for more than 10 years after diagnosis, making awareness of these issues an important factor in efforts to improve the quality of life for these women. This article reviews how sexuality is affected and provides recommendations for effective communication, assessment, and management strategies related to sexual dysfunction in gynecologic cancer survivors. © 2010 American College of Nurse-Midwives. Source

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