The grasslands dominated by Bromus erectus and/or Brachypodium rupestre cover large areas on sandstone and marl-clay-sandstone substrata (limestone is excluded), of the Apennines and pre-Apennines between Pistoia and Arezzo provinces (Tuscany, Central Italy). Our investigation was focused on to 71 unpublished releves and 45 literature releves from Tuscany and surrounding areas, reporting the original releves of Astragalo monspessulani-Brometum erecti, Centaureo bracteatae-Brometum erecti and Ononido masquillerii-Brometum erecti. The releves were submitted to exploratory multivariate analysis, allowing to detect nine distinct groups. Their consistence was verified by mean of NMDS against Ellenberg/Pignatti indicator values, and CCA constrained against chorotypes and growth forms. Diagnostic species of the definitive groups resulting from the analysis were chosen according to species fidelity, based on the φ coefficient of association. The analysis splits the data set in two main subclusters; the first one (A) includes few releves of low altitude, thermophilous conenoses, interpreted as a transition between the submediterranean aspects of Festuco-Brometea class and other Mediterranean herbaceous and shrubby classes; the second subcluster (B) includes most of the data set and can be clearly subdivided in pioneering, mesoxerophilous communities (B1 and B2a groups) and mesophilous communities (B2b group). The releves of clusters B1 and B2a are referred to Coronillo minimae-Astragaletum monspessulanii association and to three other groups: Plantago argentea-Carex caryophyllea communities, Tragopogon samaritani-Bromus erectus communities, Festuco trachyphyllae-Brometum erecti ass. nova. The mesophilous group (B2b) includes the original Centaureo bracteatae-Brometum erecti and Ononido masquillerii-Brometum erecti releves, together with a slightly differentiated community; due to the non-relevant differences between these grassland types from floristic, ecological and chorological perspectives, we propose herewith to treat them as three subassociations of Centaureo bracteatae-Brometum erecti (typicum, ononidetosum masquillerii and linetosum cathartici). Post-cultural grasslands in human-disturbed areas were also detected. All these communities can be attributed to Polygalo mediterraneae-Bromenion erecti suballiance (Bromion alliance), even if a clear subdivision between the mesoxerophilous pioneer aspects and the more mesophilous and evolved ones can be noted.
This paper deals with the long-debated question of the origins of tree names and the methodological problems related to PIE etymologies. It aims at putting forward some basic principles of etymology, and at applying these principles to the analysis of twelve tree names. It also seeks to demonstrate the relevance of substratic pre-IE languages’ influence on the lexicon, and at isolating geographic areas corresponding to pre-Indo-European lexical stocks lying behind modern Celtic languages.
This study presents a floristic and vegetational analysis of the territory of the Onferno Nature Reserve. The site extends over about 120 hectares, and is located in central Italy, in a hilly area near the Adriatic coast. It is characterised by the presence of large gypsum blocks that have karst caves, where important colonies of bats lives. This study of the vegetation allowed the description of six main vegetation series, divided into three different geosigmeta: a geomorphological unit of gypsum substrata (Gessi di Onferno); a geomorphological unit of clay substrata (Formazione del Santerno); and a geomorphological unit of compact sandstone substrata (Formazione Montecalvo in Foglia). This floristic and vegetation studies carried out on the secondary grasslands (EC Habitat 6210) have allowed the evaluation of the grazing effects on the conservation of their biodiversity, and highlight the critical nature of this management method. Furthermore, on the basis of the vegetation studies, the list of habitats according to EC Directive 92/43/CEE has been better defined and updated.
Single sheet graphene (SG) is an innovative transparent material with high electrical and thermal conduction the use of which in transparent electrodes instead of traditional materials improves the performance of optoelectronic devices. In this study, graphene oxide (GO) has been obtained by a modified Hummer`s method followed by an advanced technique of water removal (lyophilisation). The Langmuir-Blodgett (LB) method was applied to transfer GO from suspension to substrate. To optimize the deposition process, as suspending and spreading solvents the benzene and benzene/methanol mixtures were chosen instead of previously studied water suspensions. The number of GO layers in suspension is reduced by exfoliation in order to obtain a single GO monolayer. For this purpose, sonication and centrifugation of GO sheets are carried out. Finally, the effect of variously treated glass substrate surfaces on the deposition efficiency has been studied. In the work, it is shown that ozonization of glass substrate improves the deposition outcome, while ozonization of indium tin oxide (ITO) glass substrate is necessary to perform such deposition. The obtained GO suspensions and LB thin films have been studied using a scanning electron microscope (SEM)
There is today much interest in research of neuronal substrata in metaphor processing. It has been suggested that the right hemisphere yields a key role in the comprehension of figurative language (non-literal) and, particularly, in metaphors. Figurative language is included in pragmatics, a branch of linguistics that researches the use of language, in opposition to the study of the system of language. There lingers, though, an open debate in respect to the identification of the specific aspects concerning semantics, as opposed to those dominated by pragmatics. Can studies from neuronal correlates clarify questions that relate to semantics/pragmatics representation? I shall analyze neuroscientific developments about implicit language to attempt to understand, in section 2, scientific techniques available and more suitable to the phenomenology of the act of understanding an implicit, figurative or implicated message in a certain language game. To do so, I shall start by reviewing the studies in philosophy of language, and accommodate the development of the research in pragmatics underlying metaphor, particularly, in Philosophical Investigations by Wittgenstein. Finally, I discuss the possibility of interpretative capabilities being socioculturally grounded. I expect this methodological analysis to contribute to the enlightenment of the problem of phenomenology of intersubjective pragmatics, and to its future experimental paradigms.
Using paradata from a prior survey that is linked to a new survey can help a survey organization develop more effective sampling strategies. One example of this type of linkage or subsampling is between the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) and the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS). MEPS is a nationally representative sample of the U.S. civilian, noninstitutionalized population based on a complex multi-stage sample design. Each year a new sample is drawn as a subsample of households from the prior year’s NHIS. The main objective of this article is to examine how paradata from a prior survey can be used in developing a sampling scheme in a subsequent survey. A framework for optimal allocation of the sample in substrata formed for this purpose is presented and evaluated for the relative effectiveness of alternative substratification schemes. The framework is applied, using real MEPS data, to illustrate how utilizing paradata from the linked survey offers the possibility of making improvements to the sampling scheme for the subsequent survey. The improvements aim to reduce the data collection costs while maintaining or increasing effective responding sample sizes and response rates for a harder to reach population.
Water scarcity poses a major threat to food security and human health in Central America and is increasingly recognized as a pressing regional issues caused primarily by deforestation and population pressure. Tools that can reliably simulate the major components of the water balance with the limited data available and needed to drive management decision and protect water supplies in this region. Four adjacent forested headwater catchments in La Tigra National Park, Honduras, ranging in size from 70 to 635 ha were instrumented and discharge measured over a one year period. A semi-distributed water balance model was developed to characterize the bio-hydrology of the four catchments, one of which is primarily cloud forest cover. The water balance model simulated daily stream discharges well, with Nash Sutcliffe model efficiency (E) values ranging from 0.67 to 0.90. Analysis of calibrated model parameters showed that despite all watersheds having similar geologic substrata, the bio-hydrological response the cloud forest indicated less plantavailable water in the root zone and greater groundwater recharge than the non cloud forest cover catchments. This resulted in watershed discharge on a per area basis four times greater from the cloud forest than the other watersheds despite only relatively minor differences in annual rainfall. These results highlight the importance of biological factors (cloud forests in this case) for sustained provision of clean, potable water, and the need to protect the cloud forest areas from destruction, particularly in the populated areas of Central America.
Bifidobacteria are one of the most important probiotics in dairy products. They have positive effects on human health. Nutritional benefits of bifidobacteria are genetically determined and can be promoted with addition of prebiotics. The aim of the present study was to examine the properties of Bifidobacterium lactis in dairy products. Pasteurised milk, freeze-dried starter culture Bb-12 (Bifidobacterium lactis, Chr. Hansen, Denmark), syrup of lactulose (Duphalac®, the Netherlands), and inulin (“Raftiline®HP”, ORAFI, Belgium) were used in the experiments. The optimal concentrations of lactulose (2%) and inulin (4%) were established in preliminary studies, based on quality indices and nutritional value of fermented dairy products (Beitane, 2008). Amino acids, carbohydrates, such as lactose, lactulose and inulin, as well as cholesterol were determined during the study using appropriate analytical procedures. The enzymatic activity of bifidobacteria determines nutritional value of the fermented dairy products. Addition of 2% lactulose resulted in significant increase of some amino acid concentrations, such as leucine, phenylalanine, lysine and arginine concentrations (P < 0.05), compared with those in other treatments. The presence of prebiotics caused a decrease of cholesterol level by 35% and lactose content by 31% in fermented milk samples. The enzymatic activity of bifidobacteria should be promoted with addition of lactulose and inulin to increase nutritional value of functional dairy products.
Extracts for agricultural use were prepared using cavitation method at 45 oC and at 95 oC from peat and earthworm biohumus. Samples of all studied extracts had similar dry-matter content. Peat humic substances and earthworm biohumus extracts were analysed using UV-Vis, FT-IR, and fluorescence spectrometry. Trace element analysis was performed with atomic absorption spectrometry. Extracts were tested for acidity, conductivity, humic acid concentration, and carboxyl group concentration. Hydrophobicity was assessed using a water-polyethylene glycol twophase system and calculation of the partition coefficient. Total nitrogen and phosphorus concentration was determined. Concentration of the humic substances slightly changed during the heating process. Significant changes in total phosphorus concentration was observed both in earthworm humus and peat extract. Thermal treatment caused decrease of hydrophobicity and lower concentration of organic matter in extracts, while carboxyl group concentrations in isolated humic substances practically did not change. The calculated ratio from UV-Vis spectra showed significant difference in humification degree of samples.