Placoid and polyodontode scales of stem chondrichthyans have been found in the early Lochkovian “Ditton Group” of the Brown Clee Hill district, Shropshire, England and at Talgarth, south Wales. One of the forms is assigned to a new species of Altholepis Karatajūtė-Talimaa, 1997, a genus already recognised from Lochkovian shallow marine deposits in Celtiberia, Spain and the Northwest Territories, Canada as well as the type locality in Podolia, Ukraine. Altholepis salopensis sp. nov. is based on small polyodontode scales with typically three to eight high odontodes; the scale form was previously considered to belong to acanthodian “Nostolepis” robusta (Brotzen, 1934). The structure of other scales formerly assigned to “Nostolepis” robusta has led us to erect a new genus Jolepis for this scale form, which differs from Altholepis in lacking an ordered layout of odontodes. Jolepis robusta (Brotzen, 1934), originally (and possibly still) considered to be an acanthodian, is also known from the Baltic countries, Russia, and northern Germany (ex erratic limestones). Scales of acanthodian Parexus recurvus Agassiz, 1845, and/or possibly from the stem chondrichthyan Seretolepis elegans Karatajūtė-Talimaa, 1968 (scales of these two taxa are barely distinguishable), and of stem chondrichthyan Polymerolepis whitei Karatajūtė-Talimaa, 1968 are also present. Altholepis, Jolepis gen. nov., Seretolepis Karatajūtė-Talimaa, 1968 and Polymerolepis Karatajūtė- Talimaa, 1968 are found in marine deposits elsewhere; the British occurrence of these taxa adds to the debate on the sedimentological origins of the Lower Old Red Sandstone deposits in the Welsh Borderland. The geographic range of several early sharks is now known to extend around the Old Red Sandstone continent and beyond.
Fourteen symposia on early/lower vertebrates have taken place over the last 50 years, usually at about four year intervals. An average 60 participants have taken part at these symposia, with over one hundred occasionally. The results of the symposia have been published in proceedings. The symposia started honoring E. A:son Stensiö and E. Jarvik. Honors were taken up at the 11th symposium in Uppsala again. Since the 13th symposium a Stensiö award is also given to young researchers in the field.
Material of tesseraspids (Tesseraspidiformes) is reported from the uppermost Severnaya Zemlya Formation (Lochkovian, Lower Devonian) of the Severnaya Zemlya archipelago, in the Russian Arctic, where it is associated with other vertebrate remains, including corvaspids, acanthodians, and large but rare specimens of osteostracans. The tesseraspid material is not abundant, and most often preserved as a “patchwork” of bony platelets (tesserae), except for a few partly articulated specimens. We redescribe the holotype of Tesseraspis mosaica Karatajūtė-Talimaa, 1983, whose head carapace is preserved as a flattened tube of adjacent tesserae. This material is compared to the already published tesseraspid taxa, i.e., T. tessellata Wills, 1935, T. toombsi Tarlo, 1964, T. mutabilis (Brotzen, 1934), T. oervigi Tarlo, 1964 emend. Dineley and Loeffler, 1976, T. denisoni Tarlo, 1964, and T. talimaae Tarlo, 1965. All species are based upon rare and incomplete material, as no head carapaces associated with trunk and tail are known, and so, the intraspecific variability is also unknown. Distinction between “species” is based on the detail of the superficial sculpture of the tesserae of the head carapaces, which is unsatisfactory. It is concluded that only four of the nominal species can be retained. A review of all other known tessellated pteraspidomorphs indicates that our knowledge of tessellated heterostracans is currently insufficient to support a meaningful classification.
The Lower Devonian ‘Placoderm Sandstone’ in the Holy Cross Mountains (HCM) is filled with abundant impressions of disarticulated vertebrate remains. The only acanthodian macroremains named to date are fin spines of Machaeracanthus polonicus Gürich. Fin spine impressions in slabs from the Winna Formation (Emsian) at Podłazie Hill (near Daleszyce) in the southern HCM, and also the Barcza Formation (?Lochkovian) at Barcza Quarry, Miedziana Góra Conglomerate (?Lochkovian), Gruchawka, and Zagórze Formation (middle–upper Emsian) at Bukowa Mountain in the northern HCM, reposited in the University of Warsaw, Polish Geological Institute-National Research Institute, Warsaw, and Natural History Museum, London collections, have been cast and studied in order to better document this poorly known taxon. As noted in other Machaeracanthus species, we have found that M. polonicus has two different morphotypes of spines, which abut lengthwise to form a pair of spines. Our investigations show that the fin spine assemblage includes Onchus overathensis as well as M. polonicus, and probably another undetermined acanthodian. The affinities of O. overathensis are reassessed. It is here considered to be a diplacanthiform, and reassigned to the genus Striacanthus, as S. overathensis. Acanthodian scapulocoracoids have also been identified, as well as tightly spiralled toothwhorls which could be from an acanthodian.
Mineral deposits are such type of assets, the valuation of which can be carried out in a very diverse manner. Methods and procedures for such a valuation are most often applied to mineral deposits with mineral reserves (according to the CRIRSCO classification), much less frequently and usually only using a comparative approach for undeveloped, initially recognized mineral deposits (with mineral resources). In Poland, a significant portion of mineral deposits, mainly of energy, metal and chemical minerals, are covered by the so-called mining property of the Treasury. At the moment, there is a lack of consistent and thoughtful management of these deposits. The appropriate methodology for valuing these deposits, which are at various stages of recognition (sometimes also of development), should be one of the key elements of such management. The State Treasury usually disposes of mining rights by “establishing” mining usufruct in the form of a contract, with the determination of remuneration for this establishment. The rules for determining remuneration for the establishment of mining usufruct are determined on the basis of an internal informal document of the Ministry of the Environment with very simplified rules for determining this remuneration, to a very limited extent related to the actual value of the deposit, which is also variable over time. This fee should be in close relation to the value of the mineral deposit valued at a given moment, taking the current conditions, including technological, environmental, formal and legal, and – in particular – market conditions into account. The valuation of mineral deposits covered by mining property, except for current needs in determining the basis for remuneration for mining usufruct establishing, should also be used to determine the value of these deposits annually as part of the State Treasury property and to present its results as part of the State Treasury Property Status Report. It is an open matter whether the methodology of valuation of the discussed mineral deposits should be based on accepted and widely used solutions for the valuation of mineral deposits for the purposes of business transactions or based on methodology of valuation of deposits as part of the planned system of Integrated Environmental and Economic National Account (up to date poorly developed). The paper presents the most important elements of both methodological approaches. It seems that the use of selected elements of each of these approaches would be advisable in this case.
Ischnacanthus gracilis (Egerton, 1861), the only ischnacanthiform acanthodian from the Lochkovian Lower Old Red Sandstone of Scotland, is known from hundreds of specimens in institutional collections worldwide. Despite this relative abundance, morphology and histology of its skeletal elements have rarely been investigated. Surface details of spines, dental elements, and scales are often not visible in specimens because they are usually split through the middle. We have examined a broad size range of fish, from 35 mm to 250 mm long. Several intact (not split) specimens have been collected in recent years and acid-prepared to show fine details of the dermal and dental elements. We have also used scanning electron microscopy of scales, jaws and dental elements, denticles and fin spines, and serial thin sectioning of articulated specimens, to document their structure. Some of our notable observations include: identification of ventral lateral lines, double-layered subtessellate calcified cartilage forming the jaws, and the probable occurrence of extraoral tricuspid denticles on the jaws of most fish. Examination of the size range, body proportions and dentition of institutional specimens gives no support for recognising more than one species in the Midland Valley localities.
This study investigated changes in the real-time measured levels of milk β-hydroxybutyrate according milk yield, lactation number and status of reproduction in dairy cows. A total of 378 cows were selected. According to their reproductive status the cows were classified as belonging to the following groups: Fresh (1 – 44 days after calving. n=43). Open (45 – 65 days after calving. n=78), Inseminated (1 – 35 days after insemination. n=133). Pregnant (35 – 60 days after insemination and pregnant (relatively pregnant) (n=124). The cows were milked with DeLaval milking robot (DeLaval Inc., Tumba, Sweden) in combination with a Herd Navigator (Lattec I/S. Hillerød. Denmark) analyser. We observed that milk β-hydroxybutyrate (BHB) had a tendency of increasing with an increase of lactation number. The average BHB in multiparous cows was 11.111% higher in comparison with primiparous cows (p<0.001). We found higher BHB concentration in the multiparous cows in all reproduction status groups (p<0.001). A strong positive statistically significant (p<0.001) relationship has been found between BHB and the average milk yield within all groups of primiparous cows although we found a statistically unreliable coefficient of correlation (from -0.202 to 0.057) between highest milk yield and BHB in primiparous and multiparous cows.
Sperm-mediated gene transfer (SMGT) is based on the ability of spermatozoa to bind exoge- nous DNA and transfer it into oocytes by fertilization. However, SMGT is still undergoing opti- mization to improve its efficiency to produce transgenic animals. The acrosome reaction is neces- sary for spermatozoa to carry the exogenous DNA into oocytes. In this study, the effect of the acrosome reaction on the efficiency of spermatozoa carrying exogenous DNA was evalua- ted. The results showed that the efficiency of the acrosome reaction was significantly higher (p<0.05) after incubation with 50 μmol/L progesterone compared to incubation without proges- terone. It was significantly higher (p<0.05) in the 20, 40, and 60 min of progesterone treatment groups than in the 0 min treatment group. The spermatozoa were further incubated with cyanine dye Cy5 labeled DNA (Cy5-DNA) for 30 min at 37°C, and positive fluorescence signals were detected after the acrosome reaction was induced by progesterone at concentrations of 0 and 50 μmol/L for 40 min. The percentage of positive Cy5-DNA signals in spermatozoa was 96.61±2.06% and 97.51±2.03% following exposure to 0 and 50 μmol/L progesterone, respective- ly. The percentage of partial spermatozoa heads observed following combination with Cy5-DNA was 39.73±3.03% and 56.88±3.12% following exposure to 0 and 50 μmol/L progesterone, respec- tively. The ratio of positively stained spermatozoa combined with exogenous DNA showed no reduction after the acrosome reaction. These results suggest that the acrosome reaction might not be the key factor affecting the efficiency of SMGT.
Due to the unrecognized effect of tigecycline (TIG) on CD4+ and CD8+ T cells, the present study has been undertaken in order to determine whether the drug can affect these cells in respect of their counts, and the production of IFN-γ, IL-17 (pro-inflammatory and immune-protective cytokines), IL-4 (anti-inflammatory and immune-protective cytokine), IL-10 and TGF-β (anti-inflammatory and immune-suppressive cytokines). Murine lymphocytes were treated with TIG for 48 and 96 h at concentrations reflecting its plasma levels obtained in vivo at therapeutic doses, and at 10-fold lower concentrations. It was found that TIG neither affected substantially the percentage and absolute counts of entire CD4+ and CD8+ T cell populations nor influenced the Foxp3+CD25+CD4+ regulatory/suppressive T cell subset. Furthermore, the percentages of IL-4-, IL-10-, IL-17- and TGF-β-producing CD4+ T cells were not altered following the exposure to TIG. Similarly, TIG did not influence IFN-γ production by CD8+ T cells. Thus, with respect to the parameters evaluated, TIG does not seem to exert immune-suppressive and anti-inflammatory effects.
The aim of this study was to establish reference values for 2D and M-mode measurements in Dachshunds. Basic echocardiographic data, including M-mode, 2D and spectral Doppler measurements, was collected, analyzed and compared between 41 healthy Dachshunds and 50 other healthy dogs of similar weight. Echocardiographic reference intervals were prepared for Dachshunds. Dachshunds had a smaller left ventricular diameter in diastole and systole and a thicker septum than other dog breeds. Male Dachshunds had larger diastolic and systolic left ventricular diameter than females. Reference intervals for 2D and M-mode measurements in healthy Dachshunds differ from other dogs of similar weight and should be used for this breed to assess chamber enlargement.
The aim of our study was to determine the influence of L-carnitine (L-CAR) on the cellular parameters of hen erythrocytes during a 48 hour exposure to L-CAR at concentrations of 25, 50 and 100 mg/mL in nutrient-deficient medium. Cell morphology, haemolysis, caspase 3/7 activity and glucose uptake (GU) were determined. The results showed a lower percentage of apoptotic cells and decreased haemolysis of erythrocytes treated for 48 hours at all the concentrations of L-CAR. The amino acid at 50 mg/mL inhibited the activity of proapoptotic caspase 3/7; however, it increased GU. In contrast, caspase 3/7 level was increased but GU was decreased in erythrocytes treated with 100 mg/mL of L-CAR when compared to the control. It may be hypothesized that reduction of apoptotic changes in hen erythrocytes may result from increased GU.
The reliable and rapid diagnosis of infectious animal diseases presents an exceptionally im- portant aspect when considering their control and prevention. The paper describes the compara- tive evaluation of two rapid isothermal amplification methods for diagnosis of African swine fever (ASF). The robustness of loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) and the cross-priming amplification (CPA) were compared using samples obtained from ASF confirmed animals. Both assays were evaluated in order to define their diagnostic capabilities in terms of ASF diagnosis and reproducibility of the results. Investigations showed no cross-reactivity for other pig patho- gens and no significant differences in the specificity of both assays. The sensitivity of LAMP reached 90%, while that of CPA was 70%. In conclusion, both methods are suitable for imple- mentation in preliminary ASF diagnosis but further improvements are required to enhance their diagnostic sensitivity.
This study analysed the influence of montelukast (MON; 10-8 - 10-4 M), a cysteinyl leukotriene receptor 1 (CysLTR1) antagonist, on the contractility of the porcine uterine smooth muscle in the luteal phase of the oesterous cycle (n=8) and in early pregnancy (n=8). Stimulation of uterine strips in the luteal phase with MON has been shown to significantly reduce the amplitude of con- tractions, but not to affect the tension or frequency of contractions. A statistically significant tension increase and decrease in the frequency and amplitude of contractions was observed in pigs in early pregnancy. This suggests that MON has a different effect on the parameters under study in cyclic and pregnant pigs.
Blastocystis is a common enteric protozoan of humans and various species of animals. Culture and microscopic examination of fecal samples is the conventional method for identifying four major forms of Blastocystis (vacuolar, granular, non-vacuolar or cystic). In this article, we compared eight liquid media for cultivation of Blastocystis spp. Study material included fecal samples from clinically healthy pigs. Significant differences in the growth of Blastocystis on individual media were observed.
Disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC) is a complex, dynamic and hemostatic disorder which develops secondarily to a disease characterized with an imbalance in the pro-coagulant and anti-coagulant components of hemostasis. The aim of the study is to evaluate hemostatic dysfunc- tion and the DIC syndrome in cattle with displaced abomasum (DA), with using the hematologic analyses and an extensive coagulation profile in the 96 hour-period including before and after surgery. The animal material of the study consisted of 12 dairy cows diagnosed with displaced abomasum (9 LDA and 3 RDA without volvulus) in the 2-4 week period after parturation and with no other post-partum disease. In dairy cows diagnosed with DA, hematological, coagulomet- ric (PT, APTT, Fibrinogen) and coagulation factor analyses [D-Dimer, TAT (thrombin-anti- thrombin complex), ATIII (antithrombin III), PAI-1 (plazminogen activator inhibitor-1] were performed in blood samples obtained before the operation as well as 30 minutes, 60 minutes and 2, 5, 10, 24, 48, 72 and 96 hours after the operation. In the DA cases, abnormalities were found in 6 of the 8 coagulation parameters. In the LDA and RDA groups, prolonged PT (sec), PT (INR) and APTT, hypofibrinogenemia, an increase in serum D-Dimer concentration at 72 and 96 hours after the operation and an increase in serum ATIII concentrations before and 30, 60 minutes and 2, 5, 72 and 96 hours after the operation was found (p<0.05). Hemostatic dysfunction and the risk of DIC developing in DA cases and continuing in the post-operative period was determined.
In this study, we propose a possible way of obtaining reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) free offspring from genetically valuable lines of Přeštice black-pied boars com- ming from PRRSV-positive pig breeding herds with the use of artificial insemination (AI). The ejaculates were collected from 4 different lines of boars. Samples of fresh semen were not detected with the virus and 12 sows were inseminated. Blood samples of sows and their offspring were repeatedly tested for the virus but the results were negative. We managed in this way to maintain the endangered population of this breed and obtain PRRSV-free offspring.
The aim of the study was to develop new laparoscopic technique for repeated recovery of sheep oocytes. Oocytes were aspirated with specifically designed catheter. It allowed to recover oocytes without ovary damage and to preserve very good quality of recovered oocytes. Fifteen ewes were oocytes donors. Oocytes were collected: one time (group I, n=15), two times (group II, n=15), three times (group III, n=10), four times (group IV, n=5). The endoscope was inserted into the abdominal cavity. Two trockars for putting the manipulators were inserted 15 cm cranial from the udder. Oocytes were collected by aspiration of the follicular fluid from the ovarian follicles. The observed clinical complications were: ovary bleeding and cicatrix at place of needle insertion, the fragmentary adhesion of infundibulum and ovary, adhesions of omentum and peri- toneum near the place where the grasping forceps were inserted and adhesion of ovary and uterus. Ovarian follicles (n=204) were aspirated, 130 (63.8%) oocytes were obtained. Out of 130 obtained oocytes, 112 were qualified for in vitro maturation. The remaining 18 oocytes (13.8%) were rejected due to cytoplasmic changes. The proposed technique allows for the collecting oocytes of good quality that can be used for IMV/IVF techniques and cloning.
Several human studies have reported that capsaicin has anti-pruritic effects. Moreover, sever- al concentrations of topical capsaicin have been used to alleviate itch. The aim of this study was to investigate the anti-pruritic effect of capsaicin against histamine-induced pruritus compared with that of topical steroid or vehicle in 15 healthy beagles. Fifteen dogs were divided into three groups (n = 5 each), and treated topically with one of the following on the left side of the neck: capsaicin, positive control (steroid), or negative control (vehicle). Each treatment was performed twice daily for 8 days. All dogs were injected with histamine intradermally before treatment and on the 2nd, 4th, 6th, and 8th days of the treatment to evoke itch. Pruritus, wheal, and erythema intensity were assessed at each evaluation; cutaneous temperature was also recorded. On the final day, skin biopsy was conducted for histopathological evaluation for all dogs. The severity of pruritus was lesser in the capsaicin-treated group compared with the negative control group on day 8 (p<0.05). In the capsaicin and steroid groups, wheal size, erythema index, and cutaneous temperature also decreased compared with pretreatment. Histopathological evaluation showed that the capsaicin-treated group had a higher number of inflammatory cells in the dermis com- pared to the vehicle control group; however, the steroid-treated group showed less severe inflam- matory reactions than the vehicle control group. These results suggest that capsaicin cannot reduce inflammation but may play a helpful role in reducing pruritus in dogs.
Four and a half years of African Swine Fever (ASF) in population of free-ranging wild boars and domestic pigs revealed a number of novel insights into the disease epidemiology. Until November 20th, 2018, in total 3048 cases in wild boars and 213 outbreaks in domestic pigs have been confirmed. In spite of low contagiosity as well as low rate of ASF spread in wild boars the disease has an enormous socio-economical impact on the production of pigs in Poland. One of the most important aspects which directly influences the dynamics of ASF spread is the unpredictable hu- man activity. Another important factor responsible for continuous ASF spread is fast recovery of wild boar population in spite of efforts taken by hunters. Assuming our scientific opinion ASF seems to be present in wildlife for the incoming few or several years. Therefore, extraordinary measures should be prepared and undertaken to limit the risk of the occurrence of future out- breaks in domestic pigs. One of the most crucial issues is implementation of strict biosecurity measures in all domestic pigs holdings.
A clinical trial was performed to evaluate the therapeutic efficacy of osaterone acetate (OSA) in the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) in dogs. Osaterone acetate (Ypozane, Virbac) was administered orally at a dose of 0.25 mg/kg body weight once a day for seven days to 23 dogs with BPH. During the 28-day trial, the dogs were monitored five times for their clinical signs and prostate volume. The OSA treatment promoted rapid reduction of clinical scores to 73.2% on day 7 and to 5.9% on day 28 (p<0.05). Osaterone acetate induced the complete clinical remission in approximately 83.0% of the dogs on day 28. The prostate volume regressed to 64.3% of the pretreatment volume after two weeks of the treatment (p<0.05) and to 54.7% at the end of the trial (p<0.05). In conclusion, OSA quickly reduced clinical signs and volume of the prostate glands in dogs with BPH.
The use of biomass in the energy industry is the consequence of ongoing efforts to replace Energy from fossil fuels with energy from renewable sources. However, due to the diversity of the biomass, its use as a solid fuel generates waste with diverse and unstable chemical composition. Waste from biomass combustion is a raw material with a very diverse composition, even in the case of using only one type of biomass. The content of individual elements in fly ash from the combustion of biomass ranges from zero to tens of percent. This makes it difficult to determine the optimal recovery methods. The ashes from the combustion of biomass are most commonly used in the production of building materials and agriculture. This article presents the elemental composition of the most commonly used biomass fuels. The results of the analysis of elemental composition of fly ashes from the combustion of forest and agricultural biomass in fluidized bed boilers used in the commercial power industry were presented. These ashes are characterized by a high content of calcium (12.3–19.4%), silicon (1.2–8.3%), potassium (0.05–1.46%), chlorine (1.1–6.1%), and iron (0.8–6.5%). The discussed ashes contained no sodium. Aluminum was found only in one of the five ashes. Manganese, chromium, copper, nickel, lead, zinc, sulfur, bismuth, titanium and zirconium were found in all of the examined ashes. The analysis of elemental composition may allow for a preliminary assessment of the recovery potential of a given ash.
The functioning of European economies and societies requires a stable and sustainable supply of mineral resources. For 10 years now EU has been developing raw materials initiative to secure European minerals supply. In many cases, areas with known or hypothetic mineral resources, are not sufficiently valued by society and authorities, remain unprotected and face competing land uses with the risk of becoming sterilized. MINATURA 2020 project was born out of a need to develop a harmonised framework which allow a common way of identifying “mineral deposits of public importance” (MDoPI) and their safeguarding via land use planning. The project has left a useful set of guidelines and proposals how to advance on the creation of a European network of MDoPIs to avoid sterilization of “deposits worth safeguarding”. In Poland, the need for legal protection of mineral deposits has been discussed intensively in recent years. Various proposals aimed at better system of mineral deposits safeguarding, especially those which should be recognized as of public importance, have been proposed. However, until now only a few coal deposits were recognized as strategic. Currently, the Polish National Mineral Policy is under preparation. Its overriding objective is to provide access to the necessary minerals, also in the longterm perspective. It assumes among others activities aimed at protection of mineral deposits regarding land use planning system. Paper presents scope and general results of MINATURA2020 project, with details on MINATURA2020 methodology implementation in Poland, Project of the Polish National Mineral Policy with its objectives and key pillars, position of MDoPIs in this Project, and – finally – expected future steps related to MDoPI safeguarding in EU and in Poland.
Overseas mining investment generally faces considerable risk due to a variety of complex risk factors. Therefore, indexes are often based on conditions of uncertainty and cannot be fully quantified. Guided by set pair analysis (SPA) theory, this study constructs a risk evaluation index system based on an analysis of the risk factors of overseas mining investment and determines the weights of factors using entropy weighting methods. In addition, this study constructs an identity-discrepancycontrary risk assessment model based on the 5-element connection number. Both the certainty and uncertainty of the various risks are treated uniformly in this model and it is possible to mathematically describe and quantitatively express complex system decisions to evaluate projects. Overseas mining investment risk and its changing trends are synthetically evaluated by calculating the adjacent connection number and analyzing the set pair potential. Using an actual overseas mining investment project as an example, the risk of overseas mining investment can be separated into five categories according to the risk field, and then the evaluation model is quantified and specific risk assessment results are obtained. Compared to the field investigation, the practicability and effectiveness of the evaluation method are illustrated. This new model combines static and dynamic factors and qualitative and quantitative information, which improves the reliability and accuracy of risk evaluation. Furthermore, this evaluation method can also be applied to other similar evaluations and has a certain scalability.