SciCombinator

Discover the most talked about and latest scientific content & concepts.

Concept: Austria

255

Rescue excavations recovered a skeleton that resurrect the contemporary dramatic history of Austria in the 17th century as troops besieged Vienna in the second Osmanic-Habsburg war. Unique for Central Europe is the evidence of a completely preserved camel skeleton uncovered in a large refuse pit. The male individual of slender stature indicates a few but characteristic pathological changes revealing not a beast of burden but probably a valuable riding animal. Anatomical and morphometrical analyses suggest a hybrid confirmed by the ancient DNA analyses resulting in the presence of a dromedary in the maternal and a Bactrian camel in the paternal line.

Concepts: Slovakia, Germany, Austria, Hungary, Camelid, Danube, 17th century, Vienna

179

To shed more light on the processes leading to crystallization of a Slavic identity, we investigated variability of complete mitochondrial genomes belonging to haplogroups H5 and H6 (63 mtDNA genomes) from the populations of Eastern and Western Slavs, including new samples of Poles, Ukrainians and Czechs presented here. Molecular dating implies formation of H5 approximately 11.5-16 thousand years ago (kya) in the areas of southern Europe. Within ancient haplogroup H6, dated at around 15-28 kya, there is a subhaplogroup H6c, which probably survived the last glaciation in Europe and has undergone expansion only 3-4 kya, together with the ancestors of some European groups, including the Slavs, because H6c has been detected in Czechs, Poles and Slovaks. Detailed analysis of complete mtDNAs allowed us to identify a number of lineages that seem specific for Central and Eastern Europe (H5a1f, H5a2, H5a1r, H5a1s, H5b4, H5e1a, H5u1, some subbranches of H5a1a and H6a1a9). Some of them could possibly be traced back to at least ∼4 kya, which indicates that some of the ancestors of today’s Slavs (Poles, Czechs, Slovaks, Ukrainians and Russians) inhabited areas of Central and Eastern Europe much earlier than it was estimated on the basis of archaeological and historical data. We also sequenced entire mitochondrial genomes of several non-European lineages (A, C, D, G, L) found in contemporary populations of Poland and Ukraine. The analysis of these haplogroups confirms the presence of Siberian (C5c1, A8a1) and Ashkenazi-specific (L2a1l2a) mtDNA lineages in Slavic populations. Moreover, we were able to pinpoint some lineages which could possibly reflect the relatively recent contacts of Slavs with nomadic Altaic peoples (C4a1a, G2a, D5a2a1a1).

Concepts: Slovakia, Ukraine, Austria, Ethnic groups in Europe, Poland, Belarus, Slavic peoples, West Slavs

160

Piroplasmosis are among the most relevant diseases of domestic animals. Babesia is emerging as cause of tick-borne zoonosis worldwide and free-living animals are reservoir hosts of several zoonotic Babesia species. We investigated the epidemiology of Babesia spp. and Theileria spp. in wild ungulates and carnivores from Northern Italy to determine which of these apicomplexan species circulate in wildlife and their prevalence of infection.

Concepts: Disease, Apicomplexa, Switzerland, Italy, Austria, Babesia, Slovenia, Alps

51

Women’s participation in medicine and the need for gender equality in healthcare are increasingly recognised, yet little attention is paid to leadership and management positions in large publicly funded academic health centres. This study illustrates such a need, taking the case of four large European centres: Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin (Germany), Karolinska Institutet (Sweden), Medizinische Universität Wien (Austria), and Oxford Academic Health Science Centre (United Kingdom).

Concepts: European Union, United Kingdom, Europe, Germany, English language, German language, Austria, Hungary

47

25 years after the discovery in the Ötztal Italian Alps, the 5,300-year-old mummy keeps providing key information on human biological and medical conditions, aspects of everyday life and societal organization in the Copper Age. The hand axe found with the body of the Alpine Iceman is one of the rare copper objects that is firmly dated to the early Copper Age because of the radiocarbon dating of the axe wooden shaft. Here we report the measurement of the lead isotope ratios of the copper blade. The results unambiguously indicate that the source of the metal is the ore-rich area of Southern Tuscany, despite ample evidence that Alpine copper ore sources were known and exploited at the time. The experimental results are discussed within the framework of all the available coeval archaeometallurgical data in Central-Southern Europe: they show that the Alps were a neat cultural barrier separating distinct metal circuits. The direct evidence of raw metal or object movement between Central Italy and the Alps is surprising and provides a new perspective on long-distance relocation of goods and relationships between the early Copper Age cultures in the area. The result is in line with the recent investigations re-evaluating the timing and extent of copper production in Central Italy in the 4th millennium BC.

Concepts: Copper, Isotope, Tin, Italy, Austria, Slovenia, Alps, Axe

31

We reconstructed the radiological dose for birds observed at 300 census sites in the 50-km northwest area affected by the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant over 2011-2014. Substituting the ambient dose rate measured at the census points (from 0.16 to 31 μGy h(-1)) with the dose rate reconstructed for adult birds of each species (from 0.3 to 97 μGy h(-1)), we confirmed that the overall bird abundance at Fukushima decreased with increasing total doses. This relationship was directly consistent with exposure levels found in the literature to induce physiological disturbances in birds. Among the 57 species constituting the observed bird community, we found that 90% were likely chronically exposed at a dose rate that could potentially affect their reproductive success. We quantified a loss of 22.6% of the total number of individuals per increment of one unit log10-tansformed total dose (in Gy), over the four-year post-accident period in the explored area. We estimated that a total dose of 0.55 Gy reduced by 50% the total number of birds in the study area over 2011-2014. The data also suggest a significant positive relationship between total dose and species diversity.

Concepts: Conservation biology, Nuclear physics, Bird, Dose, Nuclear fission, Nuclear power, Austria, Lists of nuclear disasters and radioactive incidents

27

The current White paper summarizes the discussions and exchange of experiences during the first European Interdisciplinary Summit on Cell-Based ATMPs which was held in Vienna, Austria, May 02 - 03, 2013. The meeting was supported by the Research Networking Programme REMEDIC (REgenerative MEDICine) funded by the European Science Foundation, and by the British Medical Research Council. To improve the competitiveness of Europe in the field of cell-based Advanced Medicinal Therapy Products (ATMPs), the following key issues were identified during the meeting: removal of national hurdles in the European Union, harmonization of national and subnational differences in Hospital Exemption rules, improved treatment algorithms for reimbursement, better knowledge on the mode of action, predictive preclinical efficacy and safety testing, need for innovative systems for preclinical testing, appropriate product characterization, manufacturing with cost of goods in mind, and appropriate design of clinical trials.

Concepts: Medicine, European Union, United Kingdom, Europe, Council of Europe, Austria, Hungary, European integration

26

To compare the time trends of Google search interest in methamphetamine and criminal offences related to this drug.

Concepts: European Union, Crime, Summary offence, Germany, Switzerland, German language, Austria, Habsburg Monarchy

26

Scholars have long speculated about how Kanner and Asperger’s descriptions of autistic behavior appeared just 1 year apart in America and Austria even as World War II had severed communication between the two countries. Both conspiracy and serendipity have been alleged, but a simpler explanation has now emerged. Autistic knowledge crossed the Atlantic with Georg Frankl-a previously unrecognized “man in the middle” who followed his fiancé to America. The evidence presented here fills in many blanks and suggests both Kanner and Asperger benefited from Frankl’s insight. He was a guiding force for both men: unseen until now because he left very little in the way of published papers. To the end of their lives, Kanner and Asperger described their conditions as separate and distinct. Today, they are both part of the Autism Spectrum in Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (5th ed.). This article explains how and why Kanner and Asperger saw their descriptions as different. It makes the case that Georg Frankl helped both men see autism as we know it today and first saw the breadth of that continuum.

Concepts: Scientific method, Autism, Pervasive developmental disorder, Asperger syndrome, Autism spectrum, Austria, Hans Asperger, World War II

24

We present a DNA barcoding study on the insect order Orthoptera that was generated in collaboration between four barcoding projects in three countries, viz. Barcoding Fauna Bavarica (Germany), German Barcode of Life, Austrian Barcode of Life, and Swiss Barcode of Life. Our dataset includes 748 COI sequences from 127 of the 162 taxa (78.4%) recorded in the three countries involved. 93 of these 122 species (76.2%, including all Ensifera), can be reliably identified using DNA barcodes. The remaining 26 caeliferan species (families Acrididae and Tetrigidae) form ten clusters that share barcodes among up to five species, in three cases even across different genera, and in six cases even sharing individual barcodes. We discuss incomplete lineage sorting and hybridization as most likely causes of this phenomenon, as the species concerned are phylogenetically young and hybridization has been previously observed. We also highlight the problem of nuclear mitochondrial pseudogenes (numts), a known problem in the barcoding of orthopteran species, and the possibility of Wolbachia infections. Finally, we discuss the possible taxonomic implications of our barcoding results and point out future research directions. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

Concepts: DNA, Evolution, Biology, Species, DNA barcoding, Grasshopper, Austria, Orthoptera