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Abstract

Purpose

Understanding the role of nutrition in the development of children’s physical, mental, and motor abilities.

Materials/methods

Examination of visiting nurse reports on feeding habits and perceived developmental delays in infants at 1 year of age between 2010 and 2015.

Results

Between 0 and 6 months of age the lowest number of new cases (4.4/100,000) identified by health screenings can be anticipated among the infants feeding exclusively with breastmilk. We find a similarly low number of identifiable new cases among infants nourished with breastmilk where it is mixed with other nutrients (4.7 new cases) while the most cases of delayed motor development can be anticipated among infants nourished with infant formulae (48.4 new cases).

Conclusions

The role of nutrition in infants’ motor development is vital, especially breastfeeding. Regular health status checks of infants are inevitably required for the adoption of higher-level health-policy decisions which may induce projects, programmes, and strategies aimed at the improvement of health. Thorough documentation and continuous collection of the pertinent data is likewise requisite.

Open access

Introduction

Malnutrition inhibits children from normal development and leads to irreversible consequences with respect to mental and physical performance.

Materials and methods

We analysed the aggregate data in the 2013–2015 reports of regional visiting nurses on the nutritional status of Hungarian children at the ages of 1, 3, and 5 years. In the regions of Hungary, stratum-specific proportions were calculated with 95% confidence intervals for the proportion of children with lower than a 10th percentile score.

Results

The proportions of malnutrition among children whose score was below the 10th percentile nationwide were 8.14% [8.03%–8.25%] at age 1, 6.87% [8.03%–8.25%] at age 3, and 5.68% [5.59%–5.78%] at age 5. In all three age groups, the proportion of children below the 10th percentile was significantly lower in the Central Hungarian region than in the national reference proportion and in Northern Hungary and the Southern Great Plain.

Discussion and conclusions

These results indicate that Hungary’s incidence of malnutrition is no better than the worldwide average. To improve this situation, Hungarian healthcare professionals must at least begin following a precise, standardized protocol for the compulsory assessment of nutritional status in the framework of their reporting on the primary care of children.

Open access

Phytoremediation is an approach designed to extract excessive heavy metals from contaminated soils through plant uptake. Cadmium (Cd) is among the elements most toxic to living organisms. Health hazards associated with the lethal intake of Cd include renal (kidney) damage, anaemia, hypertension and liver damage. A greenhouse experiment was carried out with Indian mustard (Brassica juncea) grown on artificially spiked soil (100 μg Cd g−1) with EDTA (2 mmol kg−1 in 5 split doses), FYM, vermicompost (VC) and microbial inoculants (MI) such as Azotobacter sp. and Pseudomonas sp. The growth of Brassica juncea L. was better in soil amended with FYM or VC as compared to unamended Cd-polluted soil. Growth was slightly suppressed in EDTA-treated soil, whereas it was better after treatment with MI. The application of FYM and VC increased the dry matter yield of Indian mustard either alone or in combination with microbial inoculants, while that of EDTA caused a significant decrease in the biomass of Indian mustard. The application of microbial inoculants increased the dry matter yield of both the roots and shoots, but not significantly, because MI shows greater sensitivity towards cadmium. The maximum cadmium concentration was observed in the EDTA +MI treatment, but Cd uptake was maximum in the VC + MI treatment. The Cd concentration in the shoots increased by 120% in CdEDTA over the Cd100 treatment, followed by CdVC (65%) and CdFYM (42%) in the absence of microbial inoculants. The corresponding values in the presence of MI were 107, 51 and 37%, respectively. A similar trend was also observed in the roots in the order CdEDTA+M > CdVC+M > CdFYM+M>Cd100+M.MI caused an increase in Cd content of 5.5% in the roots and 4.1% in the shoots in the CdEDTA+M treatment compared with the CdEDTA treatment. FYM, VC and EDTA also increased Cd uptake significantly both in the shoots and roots with and without microbial inoculants.The results indicated that Vermicompost in combination with microbial inoculants is the best treatment for the phytoremediation of Cd-contaminated soil by Indian mustard, as revealed by the Cd uptake values in the shoots: CdVC+M (2265.7 μg/pot) followed by CdEDTA+M (2251.2 μg/pot), CdFYM+M (1485.7 μg/pot) and Cd100+M (993.1 μg/pot).

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Acta Microbiologica et Immunologica Hungarica
Authors: B. Kádár, M. Szász, Katalin Kristóf, Natasa Pesti, G. Krizsán, Julianna Szentandrássy, L. Rókusz, K. Nagy, and Dóra Szabó

The aim of the study was to investigate the biofilm-production of 60 Pseudomonas aeruginosa strains isolated from clinical samples and to examine the effect of different antimicrobials and their combinations with clarithromycin on biofilm-formation.The minimal inhibitory concentrations (MICs), minimal biofilm inhibitory concentrations (MBICs), and antibiotic synergy by calculating the fractional inhibitory concentration (FIC) index were determined for the following antibiotics: ceftazidime, cefepime, piperacillin/tazobactam, imipenem, meropenem, levofloxacin, ciprofloxacin, gentamicin, amikacin, tobramycin, netilmicin and clarithromycin.A total of 14 (23.3%) isolates out of 60 isolates of P. aeruginosa were biofilm positive. Cefepime, imipenem and meropenem had the lowest MIC90 values. Piperacillin/tazobactam and clarithromycin had the highest MIC90 values. Imipenem, meropenem, piperacillin/tazobactam and clarithromycin had the lowest MBIC90 values.For biofilm-forming P. aeruginosa strains 2-fold to 128-fold higher MBIC values than MIC values were obtained for ceftazidime, cefepime, imipenem, amikacin and netilmicin. The MBIC was 2-fold to 512-fold lower then the MIC values in the case of piperacillin/tazobactam, ciprofloxacin, levofloxacin and clarithromycin.Synergy was generally demonstrated for clarithromycin in combination with aminoglycosides, fluoroquinolones or ceftazidime. However, surprisingly it was found that combinations of clarithromycin with carbapenems or cefepime led to an antagonistic interaction: combination of clarithromycin with imipenem, meropenem or ertapenem showed antagonism in 37.5%, 50% and 62.5% of the strains tested whereas its combination with cefepime expressed antagonism in 75% of the strains, respectively. To the best of our knowledge no one has previously described this phenomenon so far.

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Community Ecology
Authors: F. Samu, F. Kádár, G. Ónodi, M. Kertész, A. Szirányi, É. Szita, K. Fetykó, D. Neidert, E. Botos, and V. Altbäcker

Recent environmental and land use changes have made wildfires more frequent in natural habitats of the Kiskunság Sand Ridge on the Hungarian Plain. In a study initiated 2.5 years after an extensive fire that destroyed half of the area of a sand grassland — juniper, poplar forest steppe habitat, we assessed the effects of fire on two generalist arthropod groups: spiders and carabid beetles, as well as on the vegetation. Utilizing the natural experiment situation, samples were taken by pitfalls and suction sampling during a 1.5 years period in four 1 ha blocks, two of which were on the burnt part of the habitat, and two in the unburnt control. At the time of the investigation, in the burnt area the vegetation in the grass layer showed a quick but not complete recovery, while the canopy layer of the juniper bushes burnt down with no sign of regeneration. Carabid beetles and spiders showed differences in recovery after fire. In the carabid assemblages of the burnt parts — compared to the unburnt control — there were over three times more beetles, out of which significantly more represented the macropterous life form and granivorous feeding strategy. There was a higher ratio of pioneer species and a simplified assemblage structure in the burnt area, which meant that the conservation value of the carabid assemblage became lower there. In contrast, for the spider assemblage quantitative changes in abundance and species numbers were not significant, and the differences in species composition did not lead to a decrease in conservation value. Spider species in the burnt plots could not be described as pioneer species, rather they had ecological characteristics that suited the changed vegetation structure. Comparing the two groups, to repopulate the burnt areas, dispersal abilities proved to be more limiting for carabids. However, in both groups a strong assemblage level adaptation could be observed to the postfire conditions. In spiders, species with a stratum preference for the grass layer prevailed, while in carabids individuals with granivore strategy gained dominance. Thus, despite the differences in their speed, basically both assemblages tracked vegetation changes. The effect of future fires will depend on their scale, as well as land-use practices, such as grazing, that interact with fire frequency and recovery. If extensive fires in the future permanently change the vegetation, then it would also lead to a fundamental change in the arthropod fauna.

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Acta Veterinaria Hungarica
Authors: A. Bersényi, S. Fekete, I. Hullár, I. Kádár, M. Szilágyi, R. Glávits, Margit Kulcsár, M. Mézes, and L. Zöldág

Carrots were grown on soils polluted by heavy metal salts. Each particular microelement reached a high concentration [molybdenum (Mo) 39.00, cadmium (Cd) 2.30, lead (Pb) 4.01, mercury (Hg) 30.00, and selenium (Se) 36.20 mg/kg dry matter] in the carrot. In a metabolic balance trial conducted with 15 male and 15 female New Zealand White rabbits, the control animals (n = 5) were fed ad libitum with concentrate as basal diet, while the other rabbits received the basal diet and carrots containing the particular microelement. Blood samples were taken to determine the activity of serum enzymes. To investigate the metabolism of Mo, Cd, Pb, Hg and Se, samples were taken from the heart, liver, lungs, kidneys, spleen, ovaries/testicles, entire digestive tract, adipose tissue, femur, hair, faeces and urine. Carrot had significantly higher digestibility for all nutrients than the rabbit concentrate. Carrot samples of high Pb content had the lowest digestibility of crude protein. The microelements differed in their rate of accumulation in the organs examined: Mo and Cd accumulated in the kidneys, Pb in the kidneys, liver, bones and lungs, Hg in the kidneys and liver, while Se in the liver, kidneys and heart. The proportions of microelements eliminated from the body either via the faeces and urine (Mo 80.18% and Se 47.41%) or via the faeces (Cd 37.86%, Pb 66.39%, Hg 64.65%) were determined. Pathohistological examination revealed that the rate of spermatogenesis was reduced in the Mo, Cd, Pb and Hg groups compared to the control. Lead, Cd and Hg intake resulted in a considerable decrease in gamma-glutamyltransferase (GGT) and in an increase of alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity because of damages to the kidneys and bones. All experimental treatments decreased the activity of cholinesterase (CHE) because of lesions in the liver.

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