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Concept: Claw


For more than 70 years unusual sauropod trackways have played a pivotal role in debates about the swimming ability of sauropods. Most claims that sauropods could swim have been based on manus-only or manus-dominated trackways. However none of these incomplete trackways has been entirely convincing, and most have proved to be taphonomic artifacts, either undertracks or the result of differential depth of penetration of manus and pes tracks, but otherwise showed the typical pattern of normal walking trackways. Here we report an assemblage of unusual sauropod tracks from the Lower Cretaceous Hekou Group of Gansu Province, northern China, characterized by the preservation of only the pes claw traces, that we interpret as having been left by walking, not buoyant or swimming, individuals. They are interpreted as the result of animals moving on a soft mud-silt substrate, projecting their claws deeply to register their traces on an underlying sand layer where they gained more grip during progression. Other sauropod walking trackways on the same surface with both pes and manus traces preserved, were probably left earlier on relatively firm substrates that predated the deposition of soft mud and silt . Presently, there is no convincing evidence of swimming sauropods from their trackways, which is not to say that sauropods did not swim at all.

Concepts: Yellow River, Evidence, Swimming, Preservation, Sauropoda, Dinosaur, Claw, Gansu


Onychomycosis constitutes up to 50% of all nail disorders. Toenails are generally affected, mostly due to dermatophytes. Terbinafine is the most potent antifungal agent in vitro against dermatophytes. There are few randomised controlled trials using a non-continuous dose of terbinafine. The aim of this open-label pilot study was to reduce the total drug amount, the collateral effects and, specially, the costs; albeit maintaining the same efficacy of the standard regimens. Compare the outcomes of two different intermittent regimens with the same total amount of the medication (42 tablets in 6 months). Forty-one patients were divided into the following groups: terbinafine 250 mg day(-1) , for 7 days, monthly or terbinafine 500 mg day(-1) , once daily, for 7 days, every 2 months, both plus nail abrasion during 6 months. The efficacy was evaluated at months 6, 12 and 18 using the disease free nail criteria. Total cure = group I: eight patients (44.4%) and group II: eight patients (44.4%). Partial cure = group I: five patients (27.8%) and group II: four patients (22.2%). Treatment failure = group I: five patients (27.8%) and group II: three patients (16.7%). Recurrence = group I: zero patients (0.0%) and group II: three patients (16.7%). Two intermittent dosing regimens of terbinafine plus nail abrasion proved to be an alternative statistically effective, safe and with reduced drug costs for dermatophytes toenail onychomycosis.

Concepts: Randomized controlled trial, Effectiveness, Onychomycosis, Athlete's foot, Nail, Ketoconazole, Nail disease, Claw


Apobaetis Day, 1955 species are known for their small size and preference for sandy stream substrate. Species which possess such habitat preference commonly possess long and slender legs and claws, but, in Apobaetis, the length of the tarsal claw rarely is so long that it exceeds the length of tarsus, occurring only in two species: A. lakota McCafferty, 2000 from USA and A. hamadae Cruz, Boldrini & Salles, 2011 from Brazil. In the present study, two new species with tarsal claws that exceed the length of the tarsi are described: Apobaetis pucupi sp. nov. from southeast Brazil and Apobaetis kethepiali sp. nov. from northernmost Brazil. Additionally, a new key for nymphs of Apobaetis is proposed.

Concepts: Present, Tarsus, Claw, Baetidae, Mayflies


Patients with onychomycosis may mask infected nails with polish. Tavaborole topical solution, 5% is a boron-based, small-molecule pharmaceutical approved for the treatment of toenail onychomycosis caused by Trichophyton rubrum and Trichophyton mentagrophytes; efinaconazole topical solution, 10% is approved for the same indication. Nail polish appearance after application of tavaborole (dropper) or efinaconazole (brush); respective applicator appearance; presence of color transfer from respective applicators; and color transfer to remaining solutions after dosing of polished nails were evaluated.
METHODS: Twelve ex vivo human cadaver fingernails were cleaned, polished with two coats of L'Oréal® Nail Color, Devil Wears Red #420, and mounted on floral foam. Nails were treated with tavaborole or efinaconazole solutions once daily for 7 days. Dropper and brush applicators were applied to white watercolor paper immediately after dosing to evaluate color transfer from polished nails. On day 7, remaining solutions were transferred to clear glass vials to evaluate color transfer from applicators to solutions. Nails, applicators, and papers were photographed daily following application; remaining solutions were photographed after 7 days of dosing.
RESULTS: Tavaborole-treated polished nails showed no polish discoloration, and tavaborole applicators did not change in appearance during treatment. No color transfer from polished nails was evident to applicator, paper, or remaining solution. Efinaconazole-treated polished nails showed substantial polish changes after the first day of treatment, with polish appearance and discoloration progressively worsening over 7 days of treatment. Color transfer from nails was evident to applicator, paper, and remaining solution.
CONCLUSIONS: Daily dropper application of tavaborole to ex vivo polished nails did not alter polish appearance. Brush application of efinaconazole produced visible changes in polish appearance and color transfer to applicators, paper, and remaining solution. Tavaborole topical solution, 5% may not alter nail polish appearance; the impact of nail polish on tavaborole clinical efficacy has not been evaluated.

J Drugs Dermatol. 2016;15(1):89-94.

Concepts: Protein, Topical, Photography, Onychomycosis, Nail, Nail disease, Claw, Manicure


Scratches on bones have routinely been attributed to tooth marks (a predominantly untested speculation), ignoring the effects of claws, perhaps because of the general assumption that claws are too soft to damage bone. However, some pathologies appears to be more compatible with claw rather than tooth impacts. Therefore, it is critical to determine if the claws of any animal are capable of scratching into the surface of any bone - a test and proof of concept. A tiger enrichment program was used to document actual bone damage unequivocally caused by claws, by assuring that the tiger had access to bones only by using its paws (claws). The spectrum of mechanisms causing bone damage was expanded by evidentiary analysis of claw-induced pathology. While static studies suggested that nails/claws could not disrupt bone, specific tiger enrichment activities documented that bones were susceptible to damage from the kinetic energy effect of the striking claw. This documents an expanded differential consideration for scratch marks on bone and evidences the power of the claw.

Concepts: Energy, Kinetic energy, Keratin, Document, Claw, Paw, Scratching, Scratch


There has been little research into brachycephalism and associated disorders in cats. A questionnaire aimed at cat owners was used to determine the relationship between feline facial conformation and owner-reported cat management requirements and respiratory abnormalities. Owner-submitted photographs of cats were used to develop novel measures of skull conformation. One thousand valid questionnaires were received. Within these there were 373 valid photographs that allowed measurement of muzzle ratio (M%) and 494 that allowed nose position ratio (NP%). The data included 239 cats for which both measurements were available. Owners reported lifestyle factors (e.g. feeding type, grooming routine, activity level), physical characteristics (e.g. hair length) and other health characteristics of their cat (e.g. tear staining, body condition score). A composite respiratory score (RS) was calculated for each cat using their owner’s assessment of respiratory noise whilst their cat was asleep and then breathing difficulty following activity. Multivariate analyses were carried out using linear models to explore the relationship between RS and facial conformation, and lifestyle risk factors. The results showed that reductions in NP% and M% were significantly associated with RS (P < 0.001 and P = 0.026, respectively) and that the relationship was significantly negatively correlated (r = -0.56, P < 0.001 for both). Respiratory score was also significantly associated with increased presence of tear staining (P < 0.001) and a sedentary lifestyle (P = 0.01). This study improves current knowledge concerning cats with breeding-related alterations in skull confirmation and indicates that brachycephalism may have negative respiratory implications for cat health and welfare, as has been previously shown in dogs.

Concepts: Cat, Felidae, Cat health, Theobromine poisoning, Felis, Cats, Claw


After the phase-out of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), the use of alternative flame retardants (AFRs), such as FireMaster 550, and of organophosphate esters (OPEs) has increased. However, little is known about human exposure to these chemicals. This lack of biomonitoring studies is partially due to the absence of reliable noninvasive biomarkers of exposure. Human hair and nails can provide integrated exposure measurements, and as such, these matrices can potentially be used as noninvasive biomarkers of exposure to these flame retardants. Paired human hair, fingernail, toenail, and serum samples obtained from 50 adult participants recruited at Indiana University Bloomington campus were analyzed by gas chromatographic mass spectrometry for 36 PBDEs, 9 AFRs, and 12 OPEs. BDE-47, BDE-99, 2-ethylhexyl-2,3,4,5-tetrabromobenzoate (TBB), di(2-ethylhexyl) tetrabromophthalate (TBPH), tris(1,3-dichloro-2-propyl)phosphate (TDCIPP), and triphenyl phosphate (TPHP) were the most abundant compounds detected in almost all hair, fingernail, and toenail samples. The concentrations followed the order OPEs > TBB+TBPH > Σpenta-BDE. PBDE levels in the hair and nail samples were significantly correlated with their levels in serum (P < 0.05), suggesting that human hair and nails can be used as biomarkers to assess human exposure to PBDEs.

Concepts: Protein, Human anatomy, Keratin, Polybrominated diphenyl ethers, Nail, Flame retardants, Claw, Bloomington, Indiana


To contribute to have a better understanding of the symbolic or not use of certain items by Neanderthals, this work presents new evidence of the deliberate removal of raptor claws occurred in Mediterranean Europe during the recent phases of the Mousterian. Rio Secco Cave in the north-east of Italy and Mandrin Cave in the Middle Rhône valley have recently produced two golden eagle pedal phalanges from contexts not younger than 49.1-48.0 ky cal BP at Rio Secco and dated around 50.0 ky cal BP at Mandrin. The bones show cut-marks located on the proximal end ascribable to the cutting of the tendons and the incision of the cortical organic tissues. Also supported by an experimental removal of large raptor claws, our reconstruction explains that the deliberate detachment occurred without damaging the claw, in a way comparable at a general level with other Mousterian contexts across Europe. After excluding that these specimens met the nutritional requirements for human subsistence, we discuss the possible implications these findings perform in our current knowledge of the European Middle Palaeolithic context.

Concepts: Italy, Neanderthal, Paleolithic, The Symbolic, Claw, Bald Eagle, Mousterian, Middle Paleolithic


Guidelines rationale: Cats are among the most commonly kept domestic pets, and coexist with humans in a variety of different circumstances. Cats are sentient beings and, as such, humans have a responsibility for cat welfare where humans and cats coexist. Because cats reproduce efficiently, measures to control populations are frequently needed, but these should be based on ethical and humane approaches. Framework: These consensus guidelines from the International Society of Feline Medicine’s Welfare Advisory Panel provide a framework for the approach to welfare and population control measures, primarily among unowned cats and those going through a homing programme.

Concepts: Mammal, Cat, Gestation, Felidae, Felis, Cats, Claw


To quantify alcohol use, objective, specific and sensitive long-term alcohol markers are necessary. Ethyl glucuronide (EtG), a direct metabolite of alcohol, accumulates in keratinous matrices such as hair and nails, and is a specific and sensitive long-term biomarker for the detection of chronic alcohol consumption. So far, research has primarily focused on the detection of EtG in hair, and studies on its measurement in nails are scarce. In this article, we assessed EtG concentrations in hair, finger- and toenails from the same individuals in order to evaluate the direct correlation between the matrices. To this end, a total amount of 45 hair, 41 fingernail, and 13 toenail samples were collected from patients treated for alcohol use disorders at two psychiatric centers in Belgium. Samples were analyzed by gas chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry. Hair EtG concentrations ranged from 123pg/mg for chronic excessive alcohol consumption, 59-123pg/mg for moderate alcohol consumption, and <59pg/mg for alcohol abstinence. In light of these results, nails may be a useful alternative to hair samples for monitoring of long-term alcohol consumption, e.g., in cases where hair is not available. Further studies are needed to establish cut-off values for EtG levels in nails.

Concepts: Protein, Keratin, Finger, Nail, Claw, Hoof