Discover the most talked about and latest scientific content & concepts.

Concept: Galicia


Galicia is an Autonomous Community located in the north-west of Spain. As a starting point to implement mitigation and adaptation measures to climate change, a regional greenhouse gas (GHG) inventory is needed. So far, the only regional GHG inventories available are limited to the territorial emissions of those production activities which are expected to cause major environmental degradation. An alternative approach has been followed here to quantify all the on-site (direct) and embodied (indirect) GHG emissions related to all Galician production and consumption activities. The carbon footprint (CF) was calculated following the territorial life cycle assessment (LCA) methodology for data collection, that combines bottom-up and top-down approaches. The most up-to-date statistical data and life cycle inventories available were used to compute all GHG emissions. This case study represents a leap of scale when compared to existing studies, thus addressing the issue of double counting, which arises when considering all the production activities of a large region. The CF of the consumption activities in Galicia is 17.8 ktCO2e/year, with 88% allocated to Galician inhabitants and 12% to tourist consumption. The proposed methodology also identifies the main important contributors to GHG emissions and shows where regional reduction efforts should be made. The major contributor to the CF of inhabitants is housing (32%), followed by food consumption (29%). Within the CF of tourist consumption, the share of transport is highest (59%), followed by housing (26%). The CF of Galician production reaches 34.9 MtCO2e/y, and its major contributor is electricity production (21%), followed by food manufacturing (19%). Our results have been compared to those reported for other regions, actions aimed at reducing GHG emissions have been proposed, and data gaps and limitations identified.

Concepts: Carbon dioxide, Climate change, Spain, Natural gas, Galicia, Greenhouse gas, Life cycle assessment, Carbon footprint


The human populations of the Iberian Peninsula are the varied result of a complex mixture of cultures throughout history, and are separated by clear social, cultural, linguistic or geographic barriers. The stronger genetic differences between closely related populations occur in the northern third of Spain, a phenomenon commonly known as “micro-differentiation”. It has been argued and discussed how this form of genetic structuring can be related to both the rugged landscape and the ancient societies of Northern Iberia, but this is difficult to test in most regions due to the intense human mobility of previous centuries. Nevertheless, the Spanish autonomous community of Asturias shows a complex history which hints of a certain isolation of its population. This, joined together with a difficult terrain full of deep valleys and steep mountains, makes it suitable for performing a study of genetic structure, based on mitochondrial DNA and Y-Chromosome markers. Our analyses do not only show that there are micro-differentiation patterns inside the Asturian territory, but that these patterns are strikingly similar between both uniparental markers. The inference of barriers to gene flow also indicates that Asturian populations from the coastal north and the mountainous south seem to be relatively isolated from the rest of the territory. These findings are discussed in light of historic and geographic data and, coupled with previous evidence, show that the origin of the current genetic patterning might indeed lie in Roman and Pre-Roman sociopolitical divisions.

Concepts: DNA, Iberian Peninsula, Spain, Andalusia, Galicia, Spanish people, Iberians, Cantabria


OBJECTIVE: To describe the current situation of self-management initiatives in Spain. METHODS: We performed a descriptive study of self-management support initiatives in Spain from the perspective of the patient as expert. Three databases were searched in October 2010 (Pubmed, Scientific Electronic Library Online [SCIELO] and Indice Médico Español [IME]), using the following Keywords «paciente experto» (expert patient), «paciente activo» (active patient) and «apoyo al autocuidado» (self-management support). Web sites were also consulted, using the same key words. Of the initiatives found, we selected those with the most advanced development and continuity, using the perspective of the expert patient (in which patients have an active role) and with a systematic format and methodology. A questionnaire was designed and was sent to the heads of the selected initiatives in the last quarter of 2010. To update the information, the questionnaire was sent again between August and September, 2012. Subsequently, the web sites were visited to review their contents and presence in social networks. RESULTS: Seven initiatives were identified in the autonomous regions of Murcia, Andalusia, Galicia, Castile-La Mancha, Basque Country, and Catalonia. These initiatives used distinct methodologies, formats and assessment systems. CONCLUSIONS: In Spain, there is increasing interest in the development of self-management support programs, although their scope is limited and their impact is mostly unknown, except for patient satisfaction. There is a need for studies on results assessment to identify the impact of these initiatives in our setting, as well as for studies on their implementation to encourage the introduction of patient activation initiatives in routine clinical practice.

Concepts: Spain, Andalusia, Galicia, Autonomous communities of Spain, Basque Country, Provinces of Spain, Catalonia, Castile-La Mancha


To assess whether the present-day geographical variability of Spanish surnames mirrors historical phenomena occurred at the times of their introduction (13th-16th century), and to infer the possible effect of foreign immigration (about 11% of present-day) on the observed patterns of diversity, we have analyzed the frequency distribution of 33,753 unique surnames (tokens) occurring 51,419,788 times, according to the list of Spanish residents of the year 2008. Isonymy measures and surname distances have been computed for, and between, the 47 mainland Spanish provinces and compared to a numerical classification of corresponding language varieties spoken in Spain. The comparison of the two bootstrap consensus trees, representing surname and linguistic variability, suggests a similar picture; major clusters are located in the east (Aragón, Cataluña, Valencia), and in the north of the country (Asturias, Galicia, León). Remaining regions appear to be considerably homogeneous. We interpret this pattern as the long-lasting effect of the surname and linguistic normalization actively led by the Christian kingdoms of the north (Reigns of Castilla y León and Aragón) during and after the southwards reconquest (Reconquista) of the territories ruled by the Arabs from the 8th century to the late 15th century, that is when surnames became transmitted in a fixed way and when Castilian linguistic varieties became increasingly prestigious and spread out. The geography of contemporary surname and linguistic variability in Spain corresponds to the political geography at the end of the Middle-Ages. The synchronicity between surname adoption and the political and cultural effects of the Reconquista have permanently forged a Spanish identity that subsequent migrations, internal or external, did not deface.

Concepts: Middle Ages, Spanish language, Al-Andalus, Spain, Andalusia, Galicia, Asturias, Castile


The objective of this study was to investigate the knowledge and capabilities of dentists and dental students in their last year of study in regard to risk factors of medication-related osteonecrosis of the jaw (MRONJ) in Spain.

Concepts: Spain, Galicia, Autonomous communities of Spain, Provinces of Spain, Asturias, Asturian language, Oviedo, Gijón


Strains V113T, V92 and V120 have been isolated from sand samples taken at the Atlantic intertidal shore in Galicia, Spain, after the Prestige oil spill. A preliminary analysis of the 16S rRNA and the partial rpoD gene sequences indicated that these strains belonged to the Pseudomonas genus, but they were distinct from any known Pseudomonas species. They were extensively characterized by a polyphasic taxonomic approach and phylogenetic data that confirmed that these strains belonged to the Pseudomonas pertucinogena group. Phylogenetic analysis of 16S rRNA, gyrB and rpoD gene sequences showed that the three strains were 99% similar and were closely related to members of the P. pertucinogena group, with less than 94% similarity to strains of established species; Pseudomonas pachastrellae was the closest relative. The Average Nucleotide Index based on blast values was 89.0% between V113T and the P. pachastrellae type strain, below the accepted species level (95%). The predominant cellular fatty acid contents and whole cell protein profiles determined by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry also differentiated the studied strains from known Pseudomonas species. We therefore conclude that strains V113T, V92 and V120 represent a novel species of Pseudomonas, for which the name Pseudomonas gallaeciensis is proposed; the type strain is V113T (=CCUG 67583T=LMG 29038T).

Concepts: DNA, Protein, Gene, Mass spectrometry, Biology, Organism, Pseudomonas, Galicia


The concentrations of PCDD/Fs (2,3,7,8-chlorosubstituted) and three dioxin-like PCBs (PCB 77, PCB 126 and PCB169) were analyzed in bivalve mollusk collected in several Galician Rías between 2006 and 2014. Levels of Total PCDD/Fs ranged from 0.03 to 0.62 pg WHO-TEQ g-1wet weight. Total dl-PCBs values were higher than Total PCDD/Fs and ranged from 0.01 to 2.11 pg WHO-TEQ g-1wet weight. These concentrations were below those considered safe for human consumption. The PCDD/Fs profile was dominated by 2,3,4,7,8-PeCDF and 2,3,7,8-TCDF with a percentage of 24.95 and 23.87 of the Total PCDD/Fs, respectively. In relation to Total dl-PCBs, CB126 was the priority congener with the highest TEF value (0.1). Principal component analysis (PCAs) indicated a clear separation between the northern (Rías de Ferrol and Coruña) and southern Rías (Ría de Pontevedra and Vigo). The northern Rías were the highest contaminated one. Temporal trends showed important reduction rates suggesting that the regulations on dioxin like contaminants have been effective for quality waters in Galician Rías.

Concepts: Principal component analysis, Spain, Persistent organic pollutant, Polychlorinated biphenyl, Galicia, Biphenyl, Polychlorinated dibenzodioxins, Chloracne


On a previous study, the carbon footprint (CF) of all production and consumption activities of Galicia, an Autonomous Community located in the north-west of Spain, was determined and the results were used to devise strategies aimed at the reduction and mitigation of the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The territorial LCA methodology was used there to perform the calculations. However, that methodology was initially designed to compute the emissions of all types of polluting substances to the environment (several thousands of substances considered in the life cycle inventories), aimed at performing complete LCA studies. This requirement implies the use of specific modelling approaches and databases that in turn raised some difficulties, i.e., need of large amounts of data (which increased gathering times), low temporal, geographical and technological representativeness of the study, lack of data, and presence of double counting issues when trying to combine the sectorial CF results into those of the total economy. In view of these of difficulties, and considering the need to focus only on GHG emissions, it seems important to improve the robustness of the CF computation while proposing a simplified methodology. This study is the result of those efforts to improve the aforementioned methodology. In addition to the territorial LCA approach, several Input-Output (IO) based alternatives have been used here to compute direct and indirect GHG emissions of all Galician production and consumption activities. The results of the different alternatives were compared and evaluated under a multi-criteria approach considering reliability, completeness, temporal and geographical correlation, applicability and consistency. Based on that, an improved and simplified methodology was proposed to determine the CF of the Galician consumption and production activities from a total responsibility perspective. This methodology adequately reflects the current characteristics of the Galician economy, thus increasing the representativeness of the results, and can be applied to any region in which IO tables and environmental vectors are available. This methodology could thus provide useful information in decision making processes to reduce and prevent GHG emissions.

Concepts: Carbon dioxide, Decision making, Spain, Methane, Galicia, Greenhouse gas, Ecological footprint, Life cycle assessment


Present work describes the radiation quality and dosimetric characterization performed on the micromachining station of the femtosecond STELA (Santiago TErawattLAser) of the University of Santiago de Compostela (Spain). For this aim, ionisation chambers, solid state detectors and radiochromic films were used. The results show the emission of pulsed X-ray produced by laser-accelerated electrons from the ablated material exhibiting both bremsstrahlung and characteristic radiation. Although this radiation was produced unintentionally, a high superficial dose rate can be achieved. Fortunately, this radiation can be stopped using small shielding to protect the personnel from its effects. Following the recommendations of this article, the yearly dose equivalent after installing the shielding were negligible.

Concepts: Electron, X-ray, Laser, Spain, Galicia, Santiago de Compostela, Santiago de los Caballeros, University of Santiago de Compostela


After publication of the article [1], it was brought to our attention that the author E. López-Díez is missing their second affiliation. The author would also like to indicate an affiliation to “Universidade de Vigo, Pontevedra, Spain”.

Concepts: HPV vaccine, Galicia, Vigo, University of Vigo, Pontevedra