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Cover page of Understanding and Modeling the Impacts of CoVID-19 on Freight Trucking Activity

Understanding and Modeling the Impacts of CoVID-19 on Freight Trucking Activity


Restrictions on travel and in-person commercial activities in many countries (e.g. the U.S., China, European Countries, etc.) due to the global outbreak and rapid spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) have severely impacted the global supply chain and subsequently affected freight transportation and logistics. This chapter summarizes the findings from the analysis of truck axle and weight data from existing highway detector infrastructure to investigate the impacts of COVID-19 on the freight truck activity. Three aspects of COVID-19 truck impacts were explored: drayage, long and short-haul movements, and payload characteristics. This analysis revealed disparate impacts of this pandemic on freight truck activity because of local and foreign policies, supply chain bottlenecks, and the dynamic changes in consumer behavior. Due to the ongoing effects of COVID-19, it is not yet possible to distinguish between transient and long-term impacts on freight trucking activity. Nonetheless, a future expansion of the study area and the incorporation of other complementary data sources may provide further insights of the pandemic’s impacts on freight movement.

Cover page of Refugee Women's Receptiveness for Virtual Engagement on Reproductive Health During the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Refugee Women's Receptiveness for Virtual Engagement on Reproductive Health During the COVID-19 Pandemic.



Refugee women who leave their country due to persecution and violence have multiple barriers to sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services. The COVID-19 pandemic added an additional barrier to in-person reproductive health education, dialogue, and clinical care. This study aimed to assess the potential of using virtual group meetings as a forum for refugee women to learn about and discuss reproductive health concerns such as cervical cancer screening, family planning, childbirth, and postpartum care.


We conducted semi-structured interviews with 36 refugee women and stakeholders to assess factors that impact refugee women's receptiveness for virtual platforms to obtain information and engage in discussions on reproductive health. Thematic analysis was conducted using the software Dedoose.


Openness to engage in virtual platforms varied by refugee community, women's demographic, and life experience. The women's involvement with local refugee groups facilitated their engagement with virtual platforms. Furthermore, individuals' family structure and marital relationship, along with literacy and English proficiency, and access to and familiarity with technology impacted engagement. Virtual groups needed to mirror confidentiality and women expressed a strong preference that groups were all-women.


Refugee women are receptive to virtual groups on SRH when they are offered in a culturally appropriate manner that considers the living situations and access to technology after arrival to the USA. Findings from this study provide a framework to develop and tailor effective virtual or hybrid virtual-in-person programs for women in refugee communities.

Cover page of Two-pore domain potassium channels (K<sub>2P</sub>) in GtoPdb v.2023.1

Two-pore domain potassium channels (K2P) in GtoPdb v.2023.1


The 4TM family of K channels mediate many of the background potassium currents observed in native cells. They are open across the physiological voltage-range and are regulated by a wide array of neurotransmitters and biochemical mediators. The pore-forming α-subunit contains two pore loop (P) domains and two subunits assemble to form one ion conduction pathway lined by four P domains. It is important to note that single channels do not have two pores but that each subunit has two P domains in its primary sequence; hence the name two-pore domain, or K2P channels (and not two-pore channels). Some of the K2P subunits can form heterodimers across subfamilies (e.g. K2P3.1 with K2P9.1). The nomenclature of 4TM K channels in the literature is still a mixture of IUPHAR and common names. The suggested division into subfamilies, described in the More detailed introduction, is based on similarities in both structural and functional properties within subfamilies and this explains the "common abbreviation" nomenclature in the tables below.

Cover page of Views from the trenches: California family physicians’ challenges and resilience factors while providing patient care during the initial wave of COVID-19

Views from the trenches: California family physicians’ challenges and resilience factors while providing patient care during the initial wave of COVID-19


This study examined challenges and factors promoting resilience among 20 California family physicians (FPs) during the first six months of the COVID-19 pandemic. A subset of academic, community, and resident FPs who responded to an online survey also participated in a semi-structured interview that explored concerns, moral distress, burnout, resource needs, support systems, coping strategies, and motivation to continue caring for patients. Thematic analysis was used to identify common themes in participant interviews. Interviewees demonstrated adaptability, resilience, and grit (i.e., commitment to completing a valued goal in the face of setbacks and adversity) despite challenges disrupting patient care, fears for family and self, and frustration due to the politicization of the pandemic. Factors promoting well-being and perseverance included professional and personal support, strong coping skills, and focusing on the meaning derived from practicing medicine. A service orientation that permeates family medicine philosophy and values motivated practitioners to continue to provide patient care while dealing with overwhelming personal and structural challenges. FPs drew strength from their internal coping skills, core family medicine values, and external support, notwithstanding demoralizing effects of mixed messages and politicization of the pandemic. FPs demonstrated resilience and grit in the face of challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic. Ensuring adequate resources to promote a physically and psychologically healthy workforce while increasing access to care for all patients is crucial to prepare for the next healthcare crisis.

Cover page of Abnormal [<sup>18</sup> F]NIFENE binding in transgenic 5xFAD mouse model of Alzheimer's disease: In vivo PET/CT imaging studies of α4β2* nicotinic acetylcholinergic receptors and in vitro correlations with Aβ plaques.

Abnormal [18 F]NIFENE binding in transgenic 5xFAD mouse model of Alzheimer's disease: In vivo PET/CT imaging studies of α4β2* nicotinic acetylcholinergic receptors and in vitro correlations with Aβ plaques.


Since cholinergic dysfunction has been implicated in Alzheimer's disease (AD), the effects of Aβ plaques on nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) α4β2* subtype were studied using the transgenic 5xFAD mouse model of AD. Using the PET radiotracer [18 F]nifene for α4β2* nAChRs, in vitro autoradiography and in vivo PET/CT studies in 5xFAD mice were carried out and compared with wild-type (C57BL/6) mice. Ratios of [18 F]nifene binding in brain regions versus cerebellum (CB) in 5xFAD mice brains were for thalamus (TH) = 17, hippocampus-subiculum = 7, frontal cortex (FC) = 5.5, and striatum = 4.7. [125 I]IBETA and immunohistochemistry (IHC) in 5xFAD brain slices confirmed Aβ plaques. Nicotine and acetylcholine displaced [18 F]nifene in 5xFAD mice (IC50 nicotine = 31-73 nM; ACh = 38-83 nM) and C57BL/6 (IC50 nicotine = 16-18 nM; ACh = 34-55 nM). Average [18 F]nifene SUVR (CB as reference) in 5xFAD mice was significantly higher in FC = 3.04 compared to C57BL/6 mice FC = 1.92 (p = .001), whereas TH difference between 5xFAD mice (SUVR = 2.58) and C57BL/6 mice (SUVR = 2.38) was not significant. Nicotine-induced dissociation half life (t1/2 ) of [18 F]nifene for TH were 37 min for 5xFAD mice and 26 min for C57BL/6 mice. Dissociation half life  for FC in C57BL/6 mice was 77 min , while no dissociation of [18 F]nifene occurred in the medial prefrontal cortex (mFC) of 5xFAD mice. Coregistration of [18 F]nifene PET with MR suggested that the mPFC, and anterior cingulate (AC) regions exhibited high uptake in 5xFAD mice compared to C57BL/6 mice. Ex vivo [18 F]nifene and in vitro [125 I]IBETA Aβ plaque autoradiography after in vivo PET/CT scan of 5xFAD mouse brain were moderately correlated (r2 = 0.68). In conclusion, 5xFAD mice showed increased non-displaceable [18 F]nifene binding in mPFC.

Cover page of Exploration of California School Nurse perspectives on the impact of COVID-19.

Exploration of California School Nurse perspectives on the impact of COVID-19.



To explore in a sample of school nurses (SN) in California the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on school nurse health services, how school nurses mitigated the impact of COVID-19, and moral distress levels among school nurses.

Design and methods

Nineteen (N = 19) school nurses who work in K-12 schools in California, USA participated in a mixed-methods approach involving qualitative descriptive design, inductive content analysis, and descriptive statistics. Interviews were conducted in August and September 2021.


Five themes emerged: (1) role of the SN during the COVID-19 pandemic, (2) coordination with school administration, (3) COVID-19 related challenges and disruptions to care, (4) moral distress, and (5) coping during the pandemic.


The pandemic had a profound impact on school nurses. This study provides school nurse perspectives of the impact of COVID-19 on services they delivered, the unique skills of school nurses essential to mitigation strategies, and moral distress school nurses encountered during the pandemic. Understanding the important role school nurses had during the pandemic is paramount to fully contextualize the contributions they made within public health nursing practice and inform preparedness for future pandemics.

Wood traits explain microbial but not termite-driven decay in Australian tropical rainforest and savanna


Variation in decay rates across woody species is a key uncertainty in predicting the fate of carbon stored in deadwood, especially in the tropics. Quantifying the relative contributions of biotic decay agents, particularly microbes and termites, under different climates and across species with diverse wood traits could help explain this variation. To fill this knowledge gap, we deployed woody stems from 16 plant species native to either rainforest (n = 10) or savanna (n = 6) in northeast Australia, with and without termite access. For comparison, we also deployed standardized, non-native pine blocks at both sites. We hypothesized that termites would increase rates of deadwood decay under conditions that limit microbial activity. Specifically, termite contributions to wood decay should be greater under dry conditions and in wood species with traits that constrain microbial decomposers. Termite discovery of stems was surprisingly low with only 17.6% and 22.6% of accessible native stems discovered in the rainforest and savanna respectively. Contrary to our hypothesis, stems discovered by termites decomposed faster only in the rainforest. Termites discovered and decayed pine blocks at higher rates than native stems in both the rainforest and savanna. We found significant variation in termite discovery and microbial decay rates across native wood species within the same site. Although wood traits explained 85% of the variation in microbial decay, they did not explain termite-driven decay. For stems undiscovered by termites, decay rates were greater in species with higher wood nutrient concentrations and syringyl:guiacyl lignin ratios but lower carbon concentrations and wood densities. Synthesis. Ecosystem-scale predictions of deadwood turnover and carbon storage should account for the impact of wood traits on decomposer communities. In tropical Australia, termite-driven decay was lower than expected for native wood on the ground. Even if termites are present, they may not always increase decomposition rates of fallen native wood in tropical forests. Our study shows how the drivers of wood decay differ between Australian tropical rainforest and savanna; further research should test whether such differences apply world-wide.

Aerobic exercise and scaffolds with hierarchical porosity synergistically promote functional recovery post volumetric muscle loss.


Volumetric muscle loss (VML), which refers to a composite skeletal muscle defect, most commonly heals by scarring and minimal muscle regeneration but substantial fibrosis. Current surgical interventions and physical therapy techniques are limited in restoring muscle function following VML. Novel tissue engineering strategies may offer an option to promote functional muscle recovery. The present study evaluates a colloidal scaffold with hierarchical porosity and controlled mechanical properties for the treatment of VML. In addition, as VML results in an acute decrease in insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1), a myogenic factor, the scaffold was designed to slowly release IGF-1 following implantation. The foam-like scaffold is directly crosslinked onto remnant muscle without the need for suturing. In situ 3D printing of IGF-1-releasing porous muscle scaffold onto VML injuries resulted in robust tissue ingrowth, improved muscle repair, and increased muscle strength in a murine VML model. Histological analysis confirmed regeneration of new muscle in the engineered scaffolds. In addition, the scaffolds significantly reduced fibrosis and increased the expression of neuromuscular junctions in the newly regenerated tissue. Exercise training, when combined with the engineered scaffolds, augmented the treatment outcome in a synergistic fashion. These data suggest highly porous scaffolds and exercise therapy, in combination, may be a treatment option following VML.