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Abstract

The research aimed to use chemical, geochemical, and ecotoxicity indices to assess the heavy metals content in soils with different degrees of exposure to human pressure. The research was conducted in southern Poland, in the Malopolska (Little Poland) province. All metal contents exceeded geochemical background levels. The highest values of the Igeo index were found for cadmium and were 10.05 (grasslands), 9.31 (forest), and 5.54 (arable lands), indicating extreme soil pollution (class 6) with this metal. Mean integrated pollution index (IPI) values, depending on the kind of use, amounted to 3.4 for arable lands, 4.9 for forests, and 6.6 for grasslands. These values are indicative of a high level of soil pollution in arable lands and an extremely high level of soil pollution in grasslands and forests. Depending on the type of soil use, Vibrio fischeri luminescence inhibition was from -33 to 59% (arable lands), from -48 to 78% (grasslands), and from 0 to 88% (forest). Significantly the highest toxicity was found in soils collected from forest grounds.
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Abstract

This paper presents the use of multi-criteria analysis as a tool that helps choosing an adequate technology for a household wastewater treatment plant. In the process of selection the criteria of sustainable development were taken into account. Five municipal mechanical-biological treatment plants were chosen for the comparative multi-criteria analysis. Different treatment technologies, such as sand filter, activated sludge, trickling filter, a hybrid system - activated sludge/trickling filter and a hybrid constructed wetland system VF-HF type (vertical and horizontal fl ow) were taken into account. The plants’ capacities were 1 m3∙d-1 (PE=8) and they all meet the environmental regulations. Additionally, a solution with a drainage system was included into the analysis. On the basis of multi-criteria analysis it was found that the preferred wastewater treatment technologies, consistent with the principles of sustainable development, were a sand filter and a hybrid constructed wetland type VF-HF. A drainage system was chosen as the best solution due to the economic criteria, however, taking into consideration the primary (ecological) criterion, employment of such systems on a larger scale disagree with the principles of sustainable development. It was found that activated sludge is the least favourable technology. The analysis showed that this technology is not compatible with the principles of sustainable development, due to a lack of proper technological stability and low reliability.
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Abstract

Developing the empathic attitude is one of the tasks of medical education as it aff ects the quality of therapeutic contact in the relationship between the doctor and the patient, conditioning the treatment process. According to Davis’s concept, empathy is defi ned as an aff ective-cognitive reaction in the context of the other person’s experience. Aim: Analysis of profi les of empathic sensitivity in students of medicine. Group: Male and female students of the fi ft h year of medicine who agreed to participate in an anonymous study (n = 153; M = 57, F = 96; mean age: 23 years). Tools: Th e Empathetic Sensitivity Scale (EES), which is the Polish tool for Davis’s Interpersonal Reactivity Index (IRI) was used. Th e ESS includes three sub-scales: Empathic Care (EC), Personal Distress (PD) and Adopting Perspective (AP). Results: The raw results were converted into sten scores and for sten scores for all three dimensions of empathetic sensitivity no diff erences were found between male and female students. Th ree clusters (1: n = 33%, 2: n = 39%, 3: n = 28%), which diff er in terms of each distinguished indicator, were identifi ed. Conclusions: Th e first cluster characterizes empathetic people, both in the aff ective and cognitive spheres, and those dealing well with unpleasant emotions in situations diffi cult to others. Th e second cluster characterizes participants with the ability to recognize the needs of others and to take into account their perspectives; the third cluster includes participants with a tendency to focus on their own experiences emerging in response to other people’s suff ering but with the ability to understand a situation and show empathic concern for the other person. The most favourable profi le — for a future doctor as well as for his patients — is the fi rst cluster because the doctor, with his empathic sensitivity directed towards the other man, can deal with his own unpleasant emotions.
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Abstract

The study examined tyrosol glucosyltransferase activity and the efficiency of salidroside production in natural and transformed root cultures of Rhodiola kirilowii (Regel) Regel et Maximowicz. Neither enzyme activity nor salidroside accumulation were detected in natural and transformed root cultures maintained in media without tyrosol. To induce TGase activity in biotransformation reactions, tyrosol was added to natural and transformed root cultures on the day of inoculation. The first peak of TGase activity (0.23 U/μg) was detected on day 9 in natural root culture, accompanied by the highest salidroside content (15.79 mg/g d.w.), but TGase activity was highest (0.27 U/μg) on day 15. In transformed root culture, day 18 showed the highest TGase activity (0.15 U/μg), which coincided with the highest salidroside content (2.4 mg/g d.w.). Based on these results, tyrosol was added to the medium on the days of highest previously detected activity of TGase: day 15 for natural root cultures and day 18 for transformed root cultures. This strategy gave significantly higher yields of salidroside than in the cultures supplemented with tyrosol on the day of inoculation. In natural root culture, salidroside production reached 21.89 mg/g d.w., while precursor feeding in transformed root cultures caused a significant increase in salidroside accumulation to 7.55 mg/g d.w. In all treatments, salidroside production was lower in transformed than in natural root cultures.
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