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Although maternal pre-pregnancy body mass index (BMI) and gestational weight gain (GWG) are related to fetal growth, there is a paucity of data regarding how offspring sex affects the relationship between maternal BMI in underweight mothers (pre-pregnancy BMI <18.5 kg/m2) and size for gestational age at birth. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of offspring sex on the relationships among maternal pre-pregnancy BMI, GWG and size for gestational age at birth in Japanese underweight mothers. Records of women with full-term pregnancies who underwent perinatal care at Kawasaki Municipal Hospital (Kawasaki, Japan) between January 2013 and December 2017 were retrospectively reviewed. The study cohort included underweight (n=566) and normal-weight women (18.5 kg/m2⩽pre-pregnancy BMI<25 kg/m2; n=2671). The incidence of small for gestational age (SGA) births in the underweight group was significantly higher than that in the normal-weight group (P<0.01). Additionally, SGA incidence in the underweight group was significantly higher than that in the normal-weight group (P<0.01) in female, but not male (P=0.30) neonates. In the women with female neonates, pre-pregnancy underweight was associated with a significantly increased probability of SGA (odds ratio [OR]: 1.80; P<0.01), but inadequate GWG was not (OR: 1.38; P=0.11). In contrast, in women with male neonates, inadequate GWG was associated with a significantly increased probability of SGA (OR: 1.53; P=0.03), but not with pre-pregnancy underweight (OR: 1.30; P=0.10). In conclusion, the present results suggest that pre-pregnancy underweight is associated with SGA in female offspring but not in male offspring.
It is thought that protoplanets formed in protoplanetary disks excite the orbital motion of the surrounding planetesimals, and the bow shocks caused by the highly excited planetesimals heat their icy component evaporating into gas. We have performed model calculations to study the evolution of molecular abundances of the evaporated icy component, which suggests sulfur-bearing molecules can be good tracers of icy planetesimal evaporation. Here we report the result of our ALMA observations of sulfur-bearing molecules towards protoplanetary disks. The lines were undetected but the obtained upper limits of the line fluxes and our model calculations give upper limits of the fractional abundances of x(H2S) < 10−11 and x(SO) < 10−10 in the outer disk. These results are consistent with the molecular abundances in comets in our Solar system.
Recently, rehabilitation therapists have become involved in cancer rehabilitation; however, no communication skills training that increases the ability to provide emotional support for cancer patients has been developed for rehabilitation therapists. In addition, no study has examined associations between rehabilitation therapists’ communication skills and their level of autistic-like traits (ALT), which are in-born characteristics including specific communication styles and difficulty communicating with patients. In this study, we aimed to investigate whether confidence in communicating with patients mitigates communication difficulties experienced by rehabilitation therapists who have high levels of ALT.
Rehabilitation therapists who treat patients with cancer completed self-administered postal questionnaires anonymously. Scores were obtained on the Autism-Spectrum Quotient short form, confidence in communication, and communication difficulties. We used covariance structure analyses to test hypothetical models, and confirmed that confidence in communication mediates the relationship between ALT and perceived communication difficulties.
Participants included 1,343 respondents (49.6%). Autism-Spectrum Quotient scores were positively correlated with communication difficulties (r = 0.16, p < 0.001). The correlation was mitigated by confidence in communication in the fit model. However, higher confidence in creating a supportive atmosphere was associated with more difficulty in communication (r = 0.16, p < 0.001).
Significance of results
Communication difficulty was linked to rehabilitation therapists’ ALTs. By increasing confidence in areas of communication other than creation of a supportive atmosphere, ALT-related difficulties in communication may be ameliorated. Confidence to create supportive environments correlated positively with difficulty. Communication skills training to increase confidence in communication for rehabilitation therapists should be developed with vigilance regarding ALT levels.
The association of 6.7 GHz class II methanol (CH3OH) masers with ATLASGAL/ ALMA 0.9 mm massive dense cores is presented in this work from a statistical viewpoint. 42 of the 112 cores (37.5%) detected with the Atacama Compact Array (ACA) excite 6.7 GHz CH3OH masers. ACA cores have offsets 0\rlap.″17 to 4\rlap.″79 from the methanol multibeam survey (MMB), with a median of 2.″19. Approximately 90% of the MMB-associated cores are of masses > 40 M⊙. Because all the cores show evidence of outflow activity, and only a fraction of the cores excited CH3OH masers, we suggest that outflows precede the emergence of maser emission. This first ALMA survey of massive dense cores combined with the MMB survey along with other maser specie surveys is a promising tool to trace the evolutionary sequence of high-mass stars.
Although an increasing number of investigations have been made into the evolution of alien species once introduced, few studies have identified the invasion routes of these introduced species. Because multiple introductions are common in invasive species, failing to take into account the introduced lineages can be misleading when studying evolutionary change in alien species after they begin to extend their ranges. In Japan, diverse lineages of ryegrasses (Lolium spp.) were introduced as forage crops and contaminants in trading grain and have expanded to sandy coasts. We studied the expansion route of populations established along the coasts of three geographic regions within Japan by comparing variations in morphology and nuclear microsatellite and chloroplast DNA in the two habitats where ryegrasses were first introduced: croplands and international seaports. Chloroplast DNA haplotypes did not differ significantly among habitats and regions, but the coastal and seaport populations displayed similar microsatellite genetic compositions and morphological characteristics. Our results revealed that coastal populations originated from seaport populations derived from contaminants. Selective forces from the past, including domestication and naturalization, may have assisted the introduced lineages in colonizing new habitats.
We have detected [C I] 3P1–3P0 emissions in the gaseous debris disks of 49 Ceti and β Pictoris with the 10 m telescope of the Atacama Submillimeter Telescope Experiment, which is the first detection of such emissions. The line profiles of [C I] are found to resemble those of CO(J=3–2) observed with the same telescope and the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array. This result suggests that atomic carbon (C) coexists with CO in the debris disks, and is likely formed by the photodissociation of CO. Assuming an optically thin [C I] emission with the excitation temperature ranging from 30 to 100 K, the column density of C is evaluated to be (2.2 ± 0.2) × 1017 and (2.5 ± 0.7) × 1016 cm−2 for 49 Ceti and β Pictoris, respectively. The C/CO column density ratio is thus derived to be 54 ± 19 and 69 ± 42 for 49 Ceti and β Pictoris, respectively. These ratios are higher than those of molecular clouds and diffuse clouds by an order of magnitude. The unusually high ratios of C to CO are likely attributed to a lack of H2 molecules needed to reproduce CO molecules efficiently from C. This result implies a small number of H2 molecules in the gas disk; i.e., there is an appreciable contribution of secondary gas from dust grains.
We fabricated ferroelectric (Pb,La)(Zr,Ti)O3 (PLZT) capacitors with
Sn:In2O3 (ITO) or Pt top electrodes and investigated
the ferroelectric properties of these PLZT capacitors. The shape of
polarization–voltage hysteresis loops was essentially unchanged and
the decrease in the remnant polarization of the ITO/PLZT/Pt capacitors was
smaller than that of the Pt/PLZT/Pt capacitors after annealing with 3%
D2 (in N2) at 200°C and 1 Torr
(i.e., FGAD). Time of flight
secondary mass spectrometry revealed that the D atoms were incorporated into the
PLZT film of the Pt/PLZT/Pt capacitors after 3% D2 annealing,
resulting in a decrease in the ferroelectric properties. In comparison, no D ion
signal was detected in the PLZT film after FGAD for ITO/PLZT/Pt
Plasmonic waveguides can transport light while still confining it beyond the diffraction limit. Recently, crossing plasmonic waveguides have been suggested for the implementation of higher-density optical networks. However, suppressing undesirable scattering at their crossing point is still a challenging task because waveguides in these structures are physically connected. Here, we present an experimental demonstration of surface plasmon propagation on an overcrossing metallic waveguide fabricated by a pick-and-place method. By spatially separating the waveguides, the undesirable interaction at the interconnection can be suppressed. Our approach could be a powerful platform to achieve high-density integration of optical waveguides.
We fabricated ferroelectric (Pb,La)(Zr,Ti)O3 (PLZT) capacitors with Sn:In2O3 (ITO) top electrodes using chemical solution deposition. Then, the effects of a thin conductive ITO buffer layer between the Pt bottom electrode and PLZT thin film were investigated in combination with top electrode (ITO/PLZT/ITO/Pt). The H2 degradation resistance of ITO/PLZT/ITO/Pt capacitors with a 3- and 28-nm-thick buffer layer was improved to 78 and 85%, respectively, from 60% without a buffer layer. The time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry profiles indicated the intensity of H ion increased after 45 min forming gas (3% H2/balance N2) annealing.
In 2011 the Black-faced Spoonbill Platalea minor census recorded a 22% drop in numbers from 2010, particularly at the known large coastal wintering sites. During this period, we discovered two new inland wintering sites for the species using satellite telemetry data, one located in China, where the individual followed the Yangtze river as far as Wuhan (500 km inland), and the other across the Vietnam-Cambodia border (70–200 km inland). Long periods of concentrated use of various freshwater habitats were in evidence for these two tagged individuals (China: 79 days, Vietnam/Cambodia: 91 Days) and in the latter case visual confirmation indicated a larger group of at least five individuals. The importance and potential of inland freshwater environments is highlighted towards the further conservation of the recovering population.
It is well known that ingestion of a protein source is effective in stimulating muscle protein synthesis after exercise. In addition, there are numerous reports on the impact of leucine and leucine-rich whey protein on muscle protein synthesis and mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) signalling. However, there is only limited information on the effects of whey protein hydrolysates (WPH) on muscle protein synthesis and mTOR signalling. The aim of the present study was to compare the effects of WPH and amino acids on muscle protein synthesis and the initiation of translation in skeletal muscle during the post-exercise phase. Male Sprague–Dawley rats swam for 2 h to depress muscle protein synthesis. Immediately after exercise, the animals were administered either carbohydrate (CHO), CHO plus an amino acid mixture (AA) or CHO plus WPH. At 1 h after exercise, the supplements containing whey-based protein (AA and WPH) caused a significant increase in the fractional rate of protein synthesis (FSR) compared with CHO. WPH also caused a significant increase in FSR compared with AA. Post-exercise ingestion of WPH caused a significant increase in the phosphorylation of mTOR levels compared with AA or CHO. In addition, WPH caused greater phosphorylation of ribosomal protein S6 kinase and eukaryotic initiation factor 4E-binding protein 1 than AA and CHO. In contrast, there was no difference in plasma amino acid levels following supplementation with either AA or WPH. These results indicate that WPH may include active components that are superior to amino acids for stimulating muscle protein synthesis and initiating translation.
An iodine-immobilizing cement solidification process using calcium aluminate cement with gypsum additive was developed. Powdered cement solid was repeatedly immersed in ion-exchanged water with varying liquid-to-solid ratios (L/S) in accelerated dissolution tests simulating interaction with groundwater at waste disposal sites. The measured concentrations of iodine in the water were on the order of 10−5 to 10−3 mol⋅dm−3 in the entire L/S range. These concentration levels are extremely low compared with those in the case of ordinary Portland cement. Calculations with a solution equilibrium model for the cement immersed in ion-exchanged water showed that the observed iodine release profile versus integrated L/S ratio from the immersion test was explained by a dissolution model of minerals in the cement.
Previous studies have demonstrated that meeting the dietary recommendations for macronutrients was significantly associated with higher cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) levels in adults. However, the relation between the status of micronutrient intake and CRF still remains unclear. This study examined the association between micronutrient intake status (based on adherence to the dietary reference intakes (DRI)) and CRF in Japanese men. The study comprised 373 Japanese men aged 30–69 years. Dietary intake was assessed with a self-administered diet history questionnaire. Overall micronutrient intake status was quantified using an overall nutrient adequacy score (ONAS) for thirteen selected micronutrients. ONAS was calculated based on adherence to the DRI for Japanese. CRF was defined as O2max during a maximal incremental test on a bicycle ergometer. Physical activity was measured using accelerometer-based activity monitors for seven consecutive days. We observed a significant inverse trend for the prevalence of inadequacy for the intake of vitamin A and Ca across incremental CRF categories (P < 0·05). In a multivariate model, the ONAS was positively associated with absolute (β = 0·10, P = 0·02) and relative O2max (β = 0·09, P = 0·04), independent of physical activity. The OR for being unfit (the lowest 25 % of the age-specific distribution of O2max) in the third ONAS tertile compared with the first ONAS tertile was 0·52 (95 % CI 0·28, 0·96). These results demonstrated that the intake of several individual micronutrients and overall micronutrient intake status are independently and positively associated with CRF in Japanese men.
Dietary manipulation is one promising approach to reducing methane (CH4) emissions from forage-fed ruminants. Studies were conducted to evaluate the effects of feeding two concentrations of tannins from Mimosa spp. on rumen fermentation, methanogenesis and energy partitioning in goats. Adult male goats were used in three trials where three diets with increasing concentrations of tannins (control, low-tannin and high-tannin) were fed in a switch-over design. The control diet consisted of 0·65 timothy hay, 0·20 crushed maize and 0·15 soybean meal; low- and high-tannin diets contained 0·975 and 0·950 of the control diet, respectively, mixed with 0·025 and 0·050 of a commercial compound containing tannins with mean crude protein (CP) of 147 g/kg dry matter (DM) and gross energy (GE) 19 MJ/kg DM, respectively. Total contents (DM basis) of tannins (hydrolysable and condensed) in the control, low- and high-tannin diets were 0, 2·8 and 5·6 g/kg DM, respectively. The tannin source contained 37 and 76 g/kg DM of condensed and hydrolysable tannins, respectively (DM basis). The DM (664 g/d) and GE intakes (19·0 MJ/d) were similar among diet groups. Digestibilities of all dietary components in the high-tannin diet were lower (P < 0·05) than low-tannin and control diets. The faecal energy (MJ/d) output was lowest in the control diet (3·49) and increased (P < 0·05) in tannin-fed goats (3·80; 4·87) resulting in a corresponding decrease in digestible energy (DE). Methane emission, expressed both on absolute and per unit of feed intake basis, decreased (P < 0·05) with increasing concentration of tannins in the diet. For example, CH4 energy excretion was 0·98, 0·87 and 0·76 MJ/d for goats on control, low- and high-tannin diets, respectively, whereas their corresponding values for CH4 conversion ratio were 0·079, 0·069 and 0·060 of GE intake. These results suggest that natural tannins, even at a low concentration (2·8 g/kg DM of the diet), reduce CH4 emissions, and tree leaves containing appreciable amounts of tannins may potentially be exploited as natural feed additives in ruminants.
An inductor in standard CMOS process having an inductance of 52 nH and a quality factor of 1.5 at frequency equal to 80 Mhz was fabricated. The polymer passivation layer of the standard CMOS inductor was etched out. The silicon substrate under the inductor, having a thickness of 280 μm was also etched out by deep reactive ion etching (DRIE). Ferrite material ZnFe2O4 and amorphous material Fe4.7Co70.3Si15B10 was then sputtered on top of the inductor sequentially. The same sputtering procedure was also performed into the bottom of the inductor. The result is an inductor that is sandwiched by multiple ferromagnetic layers. The inductance of the new ferromagnetic inductor has increased by 15% from 52 nH to 60 nH. The quality factor has also increased by 20% from 1.5 to 1.8.
An ancient iron sword (ca 2,000 year old) excavated from Ohtake-nishi archaeological site in Osaka Prefecture, is one of the oldest cast iron swords in Japan. Because of a good state of preservation, such as the sharply-defined “Shinogi” (the longitudinal ridge) on the surface, we studied relationship between the burial environment and corrosion behavior. As environmental conditions, we investigated groundwater chemistry and corrosion rate with iron probe monitor, etc. Regarding corrosion state, we analyzed corrosion depths with an X-ray computed tomography and corrosion products with a portable X-ray diffractometer equipped with X-ray fluorescence spectrometer. As results, we found that the redox potential and dissolved oxygen level as environmental conditions were very low, and that the corrosion rate (7.5×10-4 mm/y) evaluated from measured corrosion depths was smaller than the probe corrosion rate (3.2–5.2×10-2 mm/y) by two orders of magnitude. The results suggested that the corrosion layer of siderite formed on the iron sword surface inhibited corrosion reaction.
The effects of the anti-methanogenic compound, bromochloromethane (BCM), on rumen microbial fermentation and ecology were examined in vivo. Japanese goats were fed a diet of 50 % Timothy grass and 50 % concentrate and then sequentially adapted to low, mid and high doses of BCM. The goats were placed into the respiration chambers for analysis of rumen microbial function and methane and H2 production. The levels of methane production were reduced by 5, 71 and 91 %, and H2 production was estimated at 545, 2941 and 3496 mmol/head per d, in response to low, mid and high doses of BCM, respectively, with no effect on maintenance feed intake and digestibility. Real-time PCR quantification of microbial groups showed a significant decrease relative to controls in abundance of methanogens and rumen fungi, whereas there were increases in Prevotella spp. and Fibrobacter succinogenes, a decrease in Ruminococcus albus and R. flavefaciens was unchanged. The numbers of protozoa were also unaffected. Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis and quantitative PCR analysis revealed that several Prevotella spp. were the bacteria that increased most in response to BCM treatment. It is concluded that the methane-inhibited rumen adapts to high hydrogen levels by shifting fermentation to propionate via Prevotella spp., but the majority of metabolic hydrogen is expelled as H2 gas.
The elemental composition and microscopic-level shape of inclusions inside industrial materials are considered important factors in fracture analytical studies. In this work, a three-dimensional (3D) microscopic elemental analysis system based on a serial sectioning technique was developed to observe the internal structure of such materials. This 3D elemental mapping system included an X-ray fluorescence analyzer and a high-precision milling machine. Control signals for the X-ray observation process were automatically sent from a data I/O system synchronized with the precision positioning on the milling machine. Composite specimens were used to confirm the resolution and the accuracy of 3D models generated from this system. Each of the two specimens was composed of three metal wires of 0.5 mm diameter braided into a single twisted wire that was placed inside a metal pipe; the pipe was then filled with either epoxy resin or Sn. The milling machine was used to create a mirror-finish cross-sectional surface on these specimens, and elemental analyses were performed. The twisted wire structure was clearly observed in the resulting 3D models. This system enables automated investigation of the 3D internal structure of materials as well as the identification of their elemental components.