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Abstract

Six Sigma as the continuation of comprehensive quality management TQM is of interest to many enterprises. Unfortunately, not everybody successfully implements quality improvement projects using Six Sigma tools. This approach requires proper preparation in many areas of the company’s operation, including: organization of processes, establishing measures, employee engagement and creating conditions for continuous improvement. The goal of the article is to present on the case study the idea of using the organizational maturity model for production management to assess a readiness of organization to implement Six Sigma. The case study presents a company maturity level diagnosis and a successful project of quality and productivity improvement using the Six Sigma concept, confirming that the organization’s maturity model is the appropriate tool for assessing multi-faceted preparation for successful implementation of Six Sigma projects.
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Abstract

Concentrations of four trace elements, copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), manganese (Mn) and seleni- um (Se), have thus far proven to be affected by lentiviral infections in people and rhesus monkeys. As small ruminant lentivirus (SRLV) infection is responsible for one of the most important goat diseases, caprine arthritis-encephalitis (CAE), we evaluated serum and liver concentrations of Cu, Zn, Mn, Se in goats severely affected by symptomatic CAE and compared them with litera- ture reference intervals. Serum and liver samples of dairy goats euthanized due to severe clinical form of CAE were collected and screened for the concentration of Cu, Zn, Mn (54 serum sam- ples, 22 liver samples), and Se (36 serum samples, 22 liver samples) using flame atomic absorption spectrometry for Cu, Zn, Mn and graphite furnace atomic absorption spectroscopy for Se. In both serum and liver samples concentration of Zn was the highest, followed by Cu concentration, and then by Mn and Se. There was no relationship between serum and liver concentrations of trace elements. Liver concentrations of all four trace elements and serum Cu concentration fell within literature reference intervals, although liver Se concentration was mainly in the lower marginal range (between 0.4 and 1.0 mg/L). Serum Zn concentration was elevated (>1.2 mg/L) in all goats, serum Mn concentration was elevated (>0.04 mg/L) in 42 (78%) goats and serum Se concentra- tion was elevated (>1.6 mg/L) in 13 (36%) goats. Concluding, severe symptomatic CAE does not appear to be associated with the level of any of the four trace elements.
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