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Concept: Hungary


The intensification of agriculture is often associated with declining mobility and bone strength through time, although women often exhibit less pronounced trends than men. For example, previous studies of prehistoric Central European agriculturalists (~5300 calibrated years BC to 850 AD) demonstrated a significant reduction in tibial rigidity among men, whereas women were characterized by low tibial rigidity, little temporal change, and high variability. Because of the potential for sex-specific skeletal responses to mechanical loading and a lack of modern comparative data, women’s activity in prehistory remains difficult to interpret. This study compares humeral and tibial cross-sectional rigidity, shape, and interlimb loading among prehistoric Central European women agriculturalists and living European women of known behavior (athletes and controls). Prehistoric female tibial rigidity at all time periods was highly variable, but differed little from living sedentary women on average, and was significantly lower than that of living runners and football players. However, humeral rigidity exceeded that of living athletes for the first ~5500 years of farming, with loading intensity biased heavily toward the upper limb. Interlimb strength proportions among Neolithic, Bronze Age, and Iron Age women were most similar to those of living semi-elite rowers. These results suggest that, in contrast to men, rigorous manual labor was a more important component of prehistoric women’s behavior than was terrestrial mobility through thousands of years of European agriculture, at levels far exceeding those of modern women.

Concepts: Europe, Slovakia, Germany, Stone Age, Hungary, Bronze Age, Synoptic table of the principal old world prehistoric cultures, Three-age system


Rescue excavations recovered a skeleton that resurrect the contemporary dramatic history of Austria in the 17th century as troops besieged Vienna in the second Osmanic-Habsburg war. Unique for Central Europe is the evidence of a completely preserved camel skeleton uncovered in a large refuse pit. The male individual of slender stature indicates a few but characteristic pathological changes revealing not a beast of burden but probably a valuable riding animal. Anatomical and morphometrical analyses suggest a hybrid confirmed by the ancient DNA analyses resulting in the presence of a dromedary in the maternal and a Bactrian camel in the paternal line.

Concepts: Slovakia, Germany, Austria, Hungary, Camelid, Danube, 17th century, Vienna


Behcet’s disease is a multisystem autoimmune disease with variable clinial manifestations. The diagnosis may pose a difficult challenge for the clinician, who has to be familiar with the wide spectrum and combination of the symptoms of Behcet’s disease. It is considered a rare disease in Hungary, and there are only few reports on Behcet’s disease in the Hungarian literature. However, the past history of Hungary, the worldwide growing incidence of the disease, and the authors' experience raise the possibility that the occurrence of the disease is higher than previously thought. In this review the authors present and discuss literature data on the pathogenesis and pathomechanism, as well as their own experience concerning the symptomatology of Behcet’s disease in order to promote diagnosis and offer adequate therapy for the patients. The authors presume that the importance of the disease is underestimated in Hungary due to a considerable number of unrecognized cases and they propose to establish a national registry for Behcets disease. Orv. Hetil., 2013, 154, 93-101.

Concepts: Epidemiology, Medical terms, Autoimmune diseases, Prevalence, Hungary, Behçet's disease, Hungarian language, Kingdom of Hungary


The Mongol invasion of Eastern Europe, and especially its sudden withdrawal from Hungary in 1242 CE, has generated much speculation and an array of controversial theories. None of them, however, considered multifaceted environmental drivers and the coupled analysis of historical reports and natural archives. Here we investigate annually resolved, absolutely dated and spatially explicit paleoclimatic evidence between 1230 and 1250 CE. Documentary sources and tree-ring chronologies reveal warm and dry summers from 1238-1241, followed by cold and wet conditions in early-1242. Marshy terrain across the Hungarian plain most likely reduced pastureland and decreased mobility, as well as the military effectiveness of the Mongol cavalry, while despoliation and depopulation ostensibly contributed to widespread famine. These circumstances arguably contributed to the determination of the Mongols to abandon Hungary and return to Russia. While overcoming deterministic and reductionist arguments, our ‘environmental hypothesis’ demonstrates the importance of minor climatic fluctuations on major historical events.

Concepts: Greek loanwords, History, Military, Hungary, Mongol Empire, Romania, Mongols, Genghis Khan


We conducted a multi-isotope study of five fifth-century AD cemeteries in modern-day Hungary to determine relationships between nomadic-pastoralist incomers-the historically documented Huns and other nomadic groups-and the sedentary agricultural population of the late Roman province of Pannonia. Contemporary historical sources describe this relationship as adversarial and destructive for the late Roman population, but archaeological evidence indicates high levels of hybridity between different groups. We undertook carbon, nitrogen, strontium and oxygen isotope analyses of bone collagen, dentine and tooth enamel at Keszthely-Fenékpuszta, Hács-Béndekpuszta, Győr-Széchenyi Square, Mözs and Szolnok-Szanda to examine these relationships through past subsistence practices. The patterns at all sites indicate medium to high animal protein consumption with little evidence for a significant contribution of aquatic resources. All populations relied to a great extent on C4 plants, most likely millet. Within each population, diet was heterogeneous, with significant variations in terms of animal protein and C3 and C4 plant consumption. High levels of intra-population and individual variability suggest that populations made use of a range of subsistence strategies, with many individuals exhibiting significant changes over their lifetimes. Rather than being characterised only by violence, the historically-documented influx of nomadic populations appears to have led to widespread changes in subsistence strategies of populations in the Carpathian basin. Nomadic-pastoralist groups may have switched to smaller herds and more farming, and, conversely, local populations may have integrated with a new economic system based on animal herding.

Concepts: Photosynthesis, Oxygen, Agriculture, Collagen, Hungary, Pannonian Plain, Herding, Pannonia


Women’s participation in medicine and the need for gender equality in healthcare are increasingly recognised, yet little attention is paid to leadership and management positions in large publicly funded academic health centres. This study illustrates such a need, taking the case of four large European centres: Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin (Germany), Karolinska Institutet (Sweden), Medizinische Universität Wien (Austria), and Oxford Academic Health Science Centre (United Kingdom).

Concepts: European Union, United Kingdom, Europe, Germany, English language, German language, Austria, Hungary


The transition from hunting and gathering to farming involved profound cultural and technological changes. In Western and Central Europe, these changes occurred rapidly and synchronously after the arrival of early farmers of Anatolian origin [1-3], who largely replaced the local Mesolithic hunter-gatherers [1, 4-6]. Further east, in the Baltic region, the transition was gradual, with little or no genetic input from incoming farmers [7]. Here we use ancient DNA to investigate the relationship between hunter-gatherers and farmers in the Lower Danube basin, a geographically intermediate area that is characterized by a rapid Neolithic transition but also by the presence of archaeological evidence that points to cultural exchange, and thus possible admixture, between hunter-gatherers and farmers. We recovered four human paleogenomes (1.1× to 4.1× coverage) from Romania spanning a time transect between 8.8 thousand years ago (kya) and 5.4 kya and supplemented them with two Mesolithic genomes (1.7× and 5.3×) from Spain to provide further context on the genetic background of Mesolithic Europe. Our results show major Western hunter-gatherer (WHG) ancestry in a Romanian Eneolithic sample with a minor, but sizeable, contribution from Anatolian farmers, suggesting multiple admixture events between hunter-gatherers and farmers. Dietary stable-isotope analysis of this sample suggests a mixed terrestrial/aquatic diet. Our results provide support for complex interactions among hunter-gatherers and farmers in the Danube basin, demonstrating that in some regions, demic and cultural diffusion were not mutually exclusive, but merely the ends of a continuum for the process of Neolithization.

Concepts: Germany, Serbia, Neolithic, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Danube, Moldova


To assess prevalence and causes of blindness and vision impairment in high-income regions and in Central/Eastern Europe in 1990 and 2010.

Concepts: Europe, Eastern Europe, Visual impairment, Central Europe, Blindness, Low vision, Vision loss, Hungary


BACKGROUND: Landscape ethnoecology focuses on the ecological features of the landscape, how the landscape is perceived, and used by people who live in it. Though studying folk classifications of species has a long history, the comparative study of habitat classifications is just beginning. I studied the habitat classification of herders in a Hungarian steppe, and compared it to classifications of botanists and laymen. METHODS: For a quantitative analysis the picture sort method was used. Twenty-three pictures of 7-11 habitat types were sorted by 25 herders. ‘Density’ of pictures along the habitat gradient of the Hortobagy salt steppe was set as equal as possible, but pictures differed in their dominant species, wetness, season, etc. Before sorts, herders were asked to describe pictures to assure proper recognition of habitats. RESULTS: Herders classified the images into three main (and 6 smaller) groups: (1) fertile habitats at the higher parts of the habitat gradient (partos, lit. on the shore); (2) saline habitats (szik, lit. salt or saline place), and (3) meadows and marshes (lapos, lit. flooded) at the lower end of the habitat gradient. Sharpness of delimitation changed along the gradient. Saline habitats were the most isolated from the rest. Botanists identified 6 groups. Laymen grouped habitats in a less coherent way. As opposed to my expectations, botanical classification was not more structured than that done by herders. I expected and found high correspondence between the classifications by herders, botanists and laymen. All tended to recognize similar main groups: wetlands, “good grass” and dry/saline habitats. Two main factors could have been responsible for similar classifications: salient features correlated (e.g. salinity recognizable by herders and botanists but not by laymen correlated with the density of grasslands or height of vegetation recognizable also for laymen), or the same salient features were used as a basis for sorting (wetness, and abiotic stress). CONCLUSIONS: Despite all the difficulties of studying habitat classifications (more implicit, more variable knowledge than knowledge on species), conducting landscape ethnoecological research will inevitably reveal a deeper human understanding of biological organization at a supraspecific level, where natural discontinuities are less sharp than at the species or population level.

Concepts: Biology, Species, Botany, Vegetation, Grassland, Biological classification, Hungary, Habitat fragmentation


The current White paper summarizes the discussions and exchange of experiences during the first European Interdisciplinary Summit on Cell-Based ATMPs which was held in Vienna, Austria, May 02 - 03, 2013. The meeting was supported by the Research Networking Programme REMEDIC (REgenerative MEDICine) funded by the European Science Foundation, and by the British Medical Research Council. To improve the competitiveness of Europe in the field of cell-based Advanced Medicinal Therapy Products (ATMPs), the following key issues were identified during the meeting: removal of national hurdles in the European Union, harmonization of national and subnational differences in Hospital Exemption rules, improved treatment algorithms for reimbursement, better knowledge on the mode of action, predictive preclinical efficacy and safety testing, need for innovative systems for preclinical testing, appropriate product characterization, manufacturing with cost of goods in mind, and appropriate design of clinical trials.

Concepts: Medicine, European Union, United Kingdom, Europe, Council of Europe, Austria, Hungary, European integration