The indoor built environment plays a critical role in our overall well-being, both due to the amount of time we spend indoors (~90%) and the ability of buildings to positively or negatively influence our health. The advent of sustainable design or green building strategies reinvigorated questions regarding the specific factors in buildings that lead to optimized conditions for health and productivity.
In urban ecosystems, socioeconomics contribute to patterns of biodiversity. The ‘luxury effect’, in which wealthier neighbourhoods are more biologically diverse, has been observed for plants, birds, bats and lizards. Here, we used data from a survey of indoor arthropod diversity (defined throughout as family-level richness) from 50 urban houses and found that house size, surrounding vegetation, as well as mean neighbourhood income best predict the number of kinds of arthropods found indoors. Our finding, that homes in wealthier neighbourhoods host higher indoor arthropod diversity (consisting of primarily non-pest species), shows that the luxury effect can extend to the indoor environment. The effect of mean neighbourhood income on indoor arthropod diversity was particularly strong for individual houses that lacked high surrounding vegetation ground cover, suggesting that neighbourhood dynamics can compensate for local choices of homeowners. Our work suggests that the management of neighbourhoods and cities can have effects on biodiversity that can extend from trees and birds all the way to the arthropod life in bedrooms and basements.
The indoor biome is a novel habitat which recent studies have shown exhibit not only high microbial diversity, but also high arthropod diversity. Here, we analyze findings from a survey of 50 houses (southeastern USA) within the context of additional survey data concerning house and room features, along with resident behavior, to explore how arthropod diversity and community composition are influenced by physical aspects of rooms and their usage, as well as the lifestyles of human residents. We found that indoor arthropod diversity is strongly influenced by access to the outdoors and carpeted rooms hosted more types of arthropods than non-carpeted rooms. Arthropod communities were similar across most room types, but basements exhibited more unique community compositions. Resident behavior such as house tidiness, pesticide usage, and pet ownership showed no significant influence on arthropod community composition. Arthropod communities across all rooms in houses exhibit trophic structure-with both generalized predators and scavengers included in the most frequently found groups. These findings suggest that indoor arthropods serve as a connection to the outdoors, and that there is still much yet to be discovered about their impact on indoor health and the unique ecological dynamics within our homes.
A long held view about the occupation of southern proto-Jê pit house villages of the southern Brazilian highlands is that these sites represent cycles of long-term abandonment and reoccupation. However, this assumption is based on an insufficient number of radiocarbon dates for individual pit houses. To address this problem, we conducted a programme of comprehensive AMS radiocarbon dating and Bayesian modelling at the deeply stratified oversized pit House 1, Baggio I site (Cal. A.D. 1395-1650), Campo Belo do Sul, Santa Catarina state, Brazil. The stratigraphy of House 1 revealed an unparalleled sequence of twelve well preserved floors evidencing a major change in occupation dynamics including five completely burnt collapsed roofs. The results of the radiocarbon dating allowed us to understand for the first time the occupation dynamics of an oversized pit house in the southern Brazilian highlands. The Bayesian model demonstrates that House 1 was occupied for over two centuries with no evidence of major periods of abandonment, calling into question previous models of long-term abandonment. In addition, the House 1 sequence allowed us to tie transformations in ceramic style and lithic technology to an absolute chronology. Finally, we can provide new evidence that the emergence of oversized domestic structures is a relatively recent phenomenon among the southern proto-Jê. As monumental pit houses start to be built, small pit houses continue to be inhabited, evidencing emerging disparities in domestic architecture after AD 1000. Our research shows the importance of programmes of intensive dating of individual structures to understand occupation dynamics and site permanence, and challenges long held assumptions that the southern Brazilian highlands were home to marginal cultures in the context of lowland South America.
To contribute evidence towards heterogeneity in risk factors for single and recurrent falls.
- The American journal of forensic medicine and pathology
- Published about 4 years ago
Death due to lightning strikes is infrequent, above all indoors. Some cases may take on a medical legal interest due to the unusual and uncommon circumstances in which they occur. The authors report an extremely rare case of electrocution occurred inside a house in a rural area. A 53-year-old man was reached by an electrical discharge originating from lightning while he was doing renovation work on a cottage. In this case, the correct interpretation of the autopsy and histological aspects and the attentive analysis of the circumstantial and environmental data led to the correct diagnosis of death and to the reconstruction of the dynamics with which it occurred. It was in fact possible to reconstruct that during a violent thunderstorm, lightning, discharging from the bottom upward formed an electric arc. The victim, who was close to metal objects (sawhorses), was struck on the left foot and the current exited from the right hand passing through the heart causing immediate death.
Allergen immunotherapy is a treatment modality which can be applied using different vaccines. The aim of this study was to quantify and compare the allergen content of different house dust mites' sublingual treatments and to review the evidence on their efficacy.
The detailed indoor radon survey was conducted during a year (from September 2012 to August 2013) quarterly in Bonghwa county, one of the provisional radon-prone areas in Korea. The surveyed area was selected on the basis of previously conducted nationwide radon survey results. In order to minimise statistical and environmental uncertainties, ∼3 % of the entire dwellings were carefully selected based on the statistical annual report of Bonghwa county. The measurement is carried out by using solid-state nuclear track detector. The range of indoor radon concentration in each dwelling was 4.36-858 Bq m(-3) and that of annual effective dose due to inhaled radon of the resident in each dwelling was 0.19-23.5 mSv y(-1). Each dwelling was determined for geology criterion using one-way Analysis of Variance for the purpose of comparing indoor radon distribution with geology. Geographical distribution of indoor radon is closely related to the geological characteristics of basement rocks. In addition, the comparison between geographical distribution of indoor radon and terrestrial gamma radiation was done.
Socially disadvantaged people experience greater risk for illnesses that may contribute to premature death. This study aimed to evaluate the impact of treatable illnesses on mortality among adults living in precarious housing.
TV series such as “House MD”, “Grey´s Anatomy” or “Emergency Room” are well perceived by medical students. Seminars featuring medical TV series such as “House MD” might serve as door-opener to attract medical students to learn more about rare diseases. The TV series “House MD” is troublesome for the main character Dr. House is an excellent diagnostician but at the same time a rather misanthropic person. Therefore, lecturing medicine with the help of “House MD” requires constant evaluation. From 2008 to 2016 we are using the well-known TV series “House MD” continuously to attract medical students and teach them about rare diseases as well as diagnostic strategies. We collected from 213 students a detailed questionnaire assessing their learning experience. 76.6% of our students (n = 157) reported to watching medical dramas on a regular basis. The Dr. House seminar was compared to traditional seminars and our students reported an improved learning effect (69.9%), better concentration (89.7%), higher motivation to participate (88.7%), and more fun (86.7%) (all p<0.001). The students see Dr. House's behavior quite critically. Likert assessment on a 5-point scale identified strong disagreement with Dr. House´s interpersonal skills in dealing with his colleagues (median = 1) and patients (median = 1). At the same time, the students strongly agreed with his outstanding diagnostic (median = 5) and therapeutic capabilities (median = 4). Medical students visiting a Dr. House teaching seminar are highly motivated to learn more about rare diseases. They were positively influenced by TV series such as Dr. House to improve their diagnostic and clinical skills. At the same time, they are critical enough not to see Dr. House as a role model for their own personality. Well performed medical TV shows such as Dr. House can successfully be used in an educational setting to motivate medical students to come into seminars to learn more about rare diseases.