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Towards the Automatic Merging of Lexical Resources: Automatic Mapping

  • Padró, Muntsa
  • Bel Rafecas, Núria
  • Necşulescu, Silvia
Lexical Resources are a critical component for Natural Language Processing applications. However, the high cost of comparing and merging different resources has been a bottleneck to have richer resources with a broad range of potential uses for a significant number of languages.With the objective of reducing cost by/neliminating human intervention, we present a new method for automating the merging of resources,with special emphasis in what we call the mapping step. This mapping step, which converts the resources into a common format that allows latter the merging, is usually performed with huge manual effort and thus makes the whole process very costly. Thus, we propose a method to perform this mapping fully automatically. To test our method, we have addressed the merging of two verb subcategorization frame lexica for Spanish, The results/nachieved, that almost replicate human work, demonstrate the feasibility of the approach.
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Contagion and efficiency in gross and net interbank payment systems

  • Freixas, Xavier
  • Parigi, Bruno M.
The increased fragility of the banking industry has generated growing concern about the risks associated with the payment systems. Although in most industrial countries different interbank payment systems coexist, little is really known about their propierties in terms of risk and efficiency. We tackle this question by comparing the two main types of payment systems, gross and net, in a framework where uncertainty arises from several sources: the time of consumption, the location of consumption and the return on investment. Payments across locations can be made either by directly transferrring liquidity or by transferring claims against the bank in the other location. The two mechanism are interpreted as the gross and net settlement systems in interbank payments. We characterize the equilibria in the two systems and identify the trade-off in terms of safety and efficiency.
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An experimental analysis of two-person reciprocity games

  • Prisbrey, Jeffrey E.
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'I believe they felt attacked': discursive representation and construction of interculturality in Spanish news television

  • Pineda Cachero, Antonio
  • García-Jiménez, Leonarda
  • Rodrigo Alsina, Miquel, 1955-
This article discusses the representation of interculturality in the media. Interculturality, the interaction between two different cultures, has taken on greater importance in the social and human sciences. However, in the field of media communications the representation of interculturality has not received much attention. Thus, we are interested in analysing the media representation of interculturality in Spanish television news. We analyse the discursive construction of interculturality in news programs, and we go into depth as to how the conflictual kind of interculturality is represented. To achieve this, critical discourse analysis is used, applying the concepts of lexicalisation, propositional structures, topics, polarisation and focus. Results indicate that in public and private stations alike, interculturality is shown as a polarised interaction between a dominant in-group and a minority out-group, and it is defined by the status quo. However, Spanish television portrays a conflictual interculturality that is not limited to disagreement., This work was supported by a grant from the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation (Ministerio de Ciencia e InnovaciÓn) for the research project ‘Analysis of Audiovisual Narratives on Civilizations and Cultures. Representations and interpretations of television news narratives’ [grant number CSO2011-23786]
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Crisis and interest: the political economy of think tanks during the great recession

  • Parrilla i Guix, Ricard
  • Almiron, Núria, 1967-
  • Xifra, Jordi
This article analyzes the inputs and constituencies (funding, founders, trustees, and experts) of the most influential group of think tanks in Spain during the great recession (2008-2015) in order to assess how far these think tanks were connected to other interest groups providing support for neoliberal policies. The aim of the article is to advance knowledge on think tank theory and it addresses three research goals: (a) assessing how far Spanish think tanks are affected by political clientelism and financialization, (b) identifying those actors who direct Spanish think tanks and collaborate with them, and (c) assessing the think tanks’ connections with international lobbying networks. Our results show that the think tanks studied are consistently related to three types of actor—political, economic, and academic—while also maintaining strong ties with the media. In this regard, their main traits are a pluralism biased toward right and center-left stances, state and party clientelism, the financial and political instrumentalization of party tanks, and the superior ability of conservative tanks to build network coalitions., The authors disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: This work was supported by the Spanish Ministry for Economy and Innovation under Grant ECO2012-34490 (a 3-year R+D project for 2013-2016).
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Exposure to bisphenol A and phthalates during pregnancy and ultrasound measures of fetal growth in the INMA-Sabadell cohort.

  • Casas Sanahuja, Maribel
  • Valvi, Damaskini, 1983-
  • Ballesteros-Gomez, Ana
  • Gascon Merlos, Mireia, 1984-
  • Fernandez, Mariana F.
  • García Esteban, Raquel
  • Iñiguez, Carmen
  • Martínez Muriano, David
  • Murcia, Mario
  • Monfort Mercader, Núria, 1983-
  • Luque, Noelia
  • Rubio, Soledad
  • Ventura Alemany, Rosa
  • Sunyer Deu, Jordi
  • Vrijheid, Martine
BACKGROUND: Prenatal exposure to bisphenol A (BPA) and phthalates may affect fetal growth; however, previous findings are inconsistent and based on few studies. OBJECTIVES: We assessed whether prenatal exposure to BPA and phthalates was associated with fetal growth in a Spanish birth cohort of 488 mother-child pairs. METHODS: We measured BPA and eight phthalates [four di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate metabolites (DEHPm), mono-benzyl phthalate (MBzP), and three low-molecular-weight phthalate metabolites (LMWPm)] in two spot-urine samples collected during the first and third trimester of pregnancy. We estimated growth curves for femur length (FL), head circumference (HC), abdominal circumference (AC), biparietal diameter (BPD), and estimated fetal weight (EFW) during pregnancy (weeks 12-20 and 20-34), and for birth weight, birth length, head circumference at birth, and placental weight. RESULTS: Overall, results did not support associations of exposure to BPA or DEHPm during pregnancy with fetal growth parameters. Prenatal MBzP exposure was positively associated with FL at 20-34 weeks, resulting in an increase of 3.70% of the average FL (95% CI: 0.75, 6.63%) per doubling of MBzP concentration. MBzP was positively associated with birth weight among boys (48 g; 95% CI: 6, 90) but not in girls (-27 g; 95% CI: -79, 25) (interaction p-value = 0.04). The LMWPm mono-n-butyl phthalate (MnBP) was negatively associated with HC at 12-20 pregnancy weeks [-4.88% of HC average (95% CI: -8.36, -1.36%)]. CONCLUSIONS: This study, one of the first to combine repeat exposure biomarker measurements and multiple growth measures during pregnancy, finds little evidence of associations of BPA or phthalate exposures with fetal growth. Phthalate metabolites MBzP and MnBP were associated with some fetal growth parameters, but these findings require replication., This study was funded by grants from RecerCaixa (2010ACUP 00349), Instituto de Salud Carlos III (Red INMA G03/176, CB06/02/0041, postdoctoral grant CD12/00563), Spanish Ministry of Health (FIS-PI041436, FIS-PI081151), Generalitat de Catalunya-CIRIT (Comissió Interdepartamental de Recerca i Innovació Tecnològica) (1999SGR00241), and Fundación Roger Torné.
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Traffic pollution exposure is associated with altered brain connectivity in school children.

  • Pujol Martí, Jesús, 1981-
  • Martínez-Vilavella, Gerard
  • Macià, Dídac
  • Fenoll, Raquel
  • Álvarez Pedrerol, Mar
  • Rivas, Ioar
  • Forns i Guzman, Joan, 1981-
  • Blanco Hinojo, Laura, 1981-
  • Capellades Font, Jaume
  • Querol, Xavier
  • Deus, Joan
  • Sunyer Deu, Jordi
Children are more vulnerable to the effects of environmental elements due to their active developmental processes. Exposure to urban air pollution has been associated with poorer cognitive performance, which is thought to be a result of direct interference with brain maturation. We aimed to assess the extent of such potential effects of urban pollution on child brain maturation using general indicators of vehicle exhaust measured in the school environment and a comprehensive imaging evaluation. A group of 263 children, aged 8 to 12years, underwent MRI to quantify regional brain volumes, tissue composition, myelination, cortical thickness, neural tract architecture, membrane metabolites, functional connectivity in major neural networks and activation/deactivation dynamics during a sensory task. A combined measurement of elemental carbon and NO2 was used as a putative marker of vehicle exhaust. Air pollution exposure was associated with brain changes of a functional nature, with no evident effect on brain anatomy, structure or membrane metabolites. Specifically, a higher content of pollutants was associated with lower functional integration and segregation in key brain networks relevant to both inner mental processes (the default mode network) and stimulus-driven mental operations. Age and performance (motor response speed) both showed the opposite effect to that of pollution, thus indicating that higher exposure is associated with slower brain maturation. In conclusion, urban air pollution appears to adversely affect brain maturation in a critical age with changes specifically concerning the functional domain., This work was supported by the European Research Council under the ERC [grant number 268479]—the BREATHE project. The Agency of University and Research Funding Management of the Catalonia Government participated in the context of Research Group SGR2014-1673.
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Natural Killer Cell-Based Immunotherapy in Acute Myeloid Leukemia: Lessons for the Future.

  • Muntasell i Castellví, Aura, 1972-
  • López-Botet, Miguel
The report by Curti et al. highlightsthe potential of NK cell-based adoptive cellular immunotherapy in oncology,currently boosted by advances in the knowledge on NK cell biology and in their ex-vivo GMP manipulation.Several issues deserve attention to fully achieve the translation of these advances to the clinic.
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Airborne copper exposure in school environments associated with poorer motor performance and altered basal ganglia.

  • Pujol Martí, Jesús, 1981-
  • Fenoll, Raquel
  • Macià, Dídac
  • Martínez-Vilavella, Gerard
  • Álvarez Pedrerol, Mar
  • Rivas, Ioar
  • Forns i Guzman, Joan, 1981-
  • Deus, Joan
  • Blanco Hinojo, Laura, 1981-
  • Querol, Xavier
  • Sunyer Deu, Jordi
INTRODUCTION: Children are more vulnerable to the effects of environmental elements. A variety of air pollutants are among the identified factors causing neural damage at toxic concentrations. It is not obvious, however, to what extent the tolerated high levels of air pollutants are able to alter brain development. We have specifically investigated the neurotoxic effects of airborne copper exposure in school environments. METHODS: Speed and consistency of motor response were assessed in 2836 children aged from 8 to 12 years. Anatomical MRI, diffusion tensor imaging, and functional MRI were used to directly test the brain repercussions in a subgroup of 263 children. RESULTS: Higher copper exposure was associated with poorer motor performance and altered structure of the basal ganglia. Specifically, the architecture of the caudate nucleus region was less complete in terms of both tissue composition and neural track water diffusion. Functional MRI consistently showed a reciprocal connectivity reduction between the caudate nucleus and the frontal cortex./nCONCLUSIONS: The results establish an association between environmental copper exposure in children and alterations of basal ganglia structure and function., This work was supported by the European Research Council under the ERC (grant number 268479)—the BREATHE project. The Agency of University and Research Funding Management of the Catalonia Government participated in the context of Research Group SGR2014-1673.
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Polycomb regulates mesoderm cell fate-specification in embryonic stem cells through activation and repression mechanisms

  • Morey Ramonell, Lluís
  • Santanach Buxaderas, Alexandra, 1988-
  • Blanco, Enrique
  • Aloia, Luigi
  • Nora, Elphège P.
  • Bruneau, Benoit G.
  • Di Croce, Luciano
Polycomb complexes (PRC1 and PRC2) are essential regulators of epigenetic gene silencing in embryonic and adult stem cells. Emerging evidence suggests that the core subunit composition regulates distinct biological processes, yet little is known about the mechanistic underpinnings of how differently composed Polycomb complexes instruct and maintain cell fate. Here we find that Mel18, also known as Pcgf2 and one of six Pcgf paralogs, uniquely regulates PRC1 to specify mesoderm cell fate in embryonic stem cells. Mechanistically, Mel18 functions as a classical Polycomb protein during early cardiac mesoderm differentiation by repressing pluripotency, lineage specification, late cardiac differentiation, and negative regulators of the BMP pathway. However, Mel18 also positively regulates expression of key mesoderm transcription factors, revealing an unexpected function of Mel18 in gene activation during cardiac differentiation. Taken together, our findings reveal that Mel18 is required to specify PRC1 function in both a context- and stage-specific manner., This work was supported by grants from the Spanish “Ministerio de Educación y Ciencia” (SAF2013-48926-P), from AGAUR, from Fundació “La Marató de TV3”, and from the European Commission’s 7th Framework Program 4DCellFate (277899)
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