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Aeolian dust input exerts significant influence on oceanic biogeochemical cycles and further potentially controls atmospheric CO2 concentrations. However, the possible link between long-term aeolian dust supply and primary productivity in the western North Pacific remains poorly understood. Here, we present a comprehensive study of major and trace elements and total organic carbon (TOC) concentrations of sediments from Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP) Site U1430 in the southern Japan Sea, in order to reconstruct oceanic palaeoproductivity evolution and test its possible link to Asian dust input since 4 Ma. Palaeoproductivity proxies indicate remarkable increases in productivity at ∼3–2 Ma followed by high-frequency oscillations in productivity since 1.2 Ma. We suggest that higher dust-derived iron supply from Central Asia at 3–2 Ma, which was likely driven by the growth of the Northern Hemisphere ice sheets, could account for enhanced primary productivity and export production in the Japan Sea. Such increased oceanic palaeoproductivity could enhance organic carbon burial, which might contribute to the decrease in atmospheric CO2 concentrations, and provide a positive feedback to the global cooling. However, the Tsushima Warm Current (TSWC) intrusion via the southern Tsushima Strait, which was controlled by glacioeustatic sea level changes, has been the principal cause of the rapid changes in primary productivity and benthic redox condition since 1.2 Ma, regardless of continuously increased Asian dust input.
We reconstruct the provenance of aluminosilicate sediment deposited in Ulleung Basin, Japan Sea, over the last 12 Ma at Site U1430 drilled during Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Expedition 346. Using multivariate partitioning techniques (Q-mode factor analysis, multiple linear regressions) applied to the major, trace and rare earth element composition of the bulk sediment, we identify and quantify four aluminosilicate components (Taklimakan, Gobi, Chinese Loess and Korean Peninsula), and model their mass accumulation rates. Each of these end-members, or materials from these regions, were present in the top-performing models in all tests. Material from the Taklimakan Desert (50–60 % of aluminosilicate contribution) is the most abundant end-member through time, while Chinese Loess and Gobi Desert components increase in contribution and flux in the Plio-Pleistocene. A Korean Peninsula component is lowest in abundance when present, and its occurrence reflects the opening of the Tsushima Strait at c. 3 Ma. Variation in dust source regions appears to track step-wise Asian aridification influenced by Cenozoic global cooling and periods of uplift of the Tibetan Plateau. During early stages of the evolution of the East Asian Monsoon, the Taklimakan Desert was the major source of dust to the Pacific. Continued uplift of the Tibetan Plateau may have influenced the increase in aeolian supply from the Gobi Desert and Chinese Loess Plateau into the Pleistocene. Consistent with existing records from the Pacific Ocean, these observations of aeolian fluxes provide more detail and specificity regarding the evolution of different Asian source regions through the latest Cenozoic.
X-ray fluorescence spectrometry has been used in a broad spectrum of applications. These include elemental analysis, both qualitative and quantitative, based on wavelength dispersive (WDXRF) or energy dispersive (EDXRF) methods. In these methods the detection limit of analyte elements is mainly in the one to ten ppm range in solid samples. Therefore, improvement of these limits is desirable for many useful applications. In this context it is essential to remember that the excitation efficiency for fluorescent X-rays is very low when compared with electron or proton excitation. In the case of WDXRF, the dominant factor is the low reflectivity from the analyzing crystal.
This article reviews the semiconductor and metal-based nanohybrid-sensitized photoelectrochemical (PEC) cells for hydrogen generation from water. The nanoscale hybridization of sensitizers in the photoanode can enhance light harvesting, interfacial charge transfer, charge separation, and induce a catalytic effect in dependence on the kind of the components and interfacial junction state. Subsequent to the introduction, second and third sections present the basic structure and design of the nanohybrid-sensitized PEC cell. Fourth section deals with the effect of the interfacial bond between quantum dots and TiO2 on the electron injection process. Fifth section mainly describes the formation of heteroepitaxial junction between the components of nanohybrids. In the sixth section, the state-of-the-art nanohybrid-sensitized PEC cells are treated with a particular emphasis placed on the interface state.
We conducted a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial to elucidate the effects of dietary milk fat globule membrane (MFGM) on the physical performance of community-dwelling Japanese adults. For this 24-week study, 115 middle-aged subjects (range 50–70 years old) were invited, of whom 113 (seventy-two women, forty-one men) completed the trial. Participants were then divided into either the placebo control or MFGM group. Measurements of physical performance (without undertaking any mandatory exercise) examining muscle strength, agility and balance were tested every 6 weeks until 24 weeks. Analyses were performed using the intention-to-treat method for all participants. Although the effects of MFGM on muscle strength and agility were not significant, we noted that the parameter for balance (such as the ability to stand on one leg with eyes closed for longer durations) increased in the MFGM group (mean 10·1 (95 % CI 8·25, 12·4) s) compared with the placebo (mean 7·53 (95 % CI 6·11, 9·30) s) (P = 0·046). Similarly, application of the mixed-effect model for repeated measures under unstructured covariance also revealed that the effect of MFGM was significant when compared with the placebo (10·2 (95 % CI 8·33, 12·4) v. 7·61 (95 % CI 6·17, 9·30) s) (P = 0·045). In conclusion, we demonstrated that MFGM had an effect on the physical performance of community-dwelling Japanese adults despite mandatory exercise. However, studies using larger cohorts of individuals from different demographic backgrounds are required to further elucidate the mechanisms underlying these effects and to extend the application of MFGM.
Temperature-dependent variations in electric switching and transverse resistance of phase-change [(GeTe)2(Sb2Te3)]n (n=4 and 8) chalcogenide superlattice (CSL) films were studied using conductive scanning probe microscopy (SPM). Three temperature regions with different electric transport properties were recognized in point current-voltage (I-V) spectra and the surface potential maps measured with tantalum and platinum-coated SPM cantilevers. At around 80°C the switching voltage decreased abruptly from ∼2 V to 0.5 V and the thermal coefficient of resistance changes its sign, indicating different carrier transport mechanisms. The observed changes correlated with decrease in the surface potential by ∼150 meV from 25 to 150°C. The results were ascribed to an opening of the CSL electronic band gap near the Fermi energy caused by thermal stress, which led to the transition from a Dirac-like semimetal to a narrow-gap semiconductor.
Human organoid models recapitulate many aspects of the complex composition and function of native organs. One of the main challenges in developing these models is the growth and maintenance of three-dimensional tissue structures and proper cellular organization that enable function. Biomaterials play an important role by providing a defined and tunable three-dimensional environment that is required for complex cellular organization and organoid growth in vitro or in vivo. This review summarizes organoids of the respiratory and digestive system, and the use of biomaterials to improve upon these model systems.
We demonstrate formation of allylamine (AAm) and acrylic acid (AAc)-functionalized colloidal silicon nanocrystals (Si NCs) exhibiting near-infrared (NIR) luminescence and immobilization of the NCs on substrates via covalent bond. The surface functionalization is confirmed by IR absorption spectroscopy and specific binding property of functionalized NCs. Atomic force microscope observations reveal that AAm- and AAc-functionalized Si NCs are chemically immobilized on self-assembled monolayers via covalent bonds. The functionalized Si NCs exhibit photoluminescence in a NIR region (1.5–1.6 eV), which is not significantly affected by the functionalization.
Charcoal samples from ancient human occupation sites in Australia have been subjected to a rigorous pretreatment and stepped combustion regime in order to explore the possibility that these sites may be older than previous radiocarbon dating had suggested. In one case, the Devil's Lair site in southwest Australia, the methodology has clearly removed vestiges of contamination by more modern carbon and has led to a revised radiocarbon chronology that provides evidence for human occupation of southwest Australia by at least 44 ka BP and probably by 46–47 ka BP. In contrast, charcoal from the Nauwalabila site has been so severely altered that insufficient of the original carbon remains for reliable 14C dating. Finally, where the charcoal is well preserved, such as at the Carpenter's Gap site, the new results provide reassurance that earlier 14C results of ∼40 ka BP are indeed true ages and are not simply at the limit of the 14C technique.
Lynch's Crater in northeastern Australia provides a long, continuous record of environmental change within the Late Quaternary. Here, we present newly determined radiocarbon ages, using acid-base-acid stepped combustion (ABA-SC) and acid-base-wet oxidation stepped combustion (ABOX-SC) pretreatment strategies. The new results largely confirm the original untreated radiocarbon results for the uppermost 9 m of sediments, (ca. 35 ka BP). Below this depth, results from both pretreatment methods are in stratigraphic agreement and extend the dating of the record from 38 ka BP to about 48 ka BP, although an apparent increased sedimentation rate below 12 m is questionable. The scarcity of “charcoal” in several of the samples raises questions regarding the application of ABOX-SC to lake or swamp sediments, with evidence for contributions from younger, chemically resistant bacterial carbon along with fine “charcoal” in some samples. However, the extent to which this phenomenon is significant to the final age estimate appears to be sample specific, and is probably dependent upon the length of the wet oxidation step in the pretreatment.
We measured radiocarbon ages of planktic foraminifera in 4 sediment cores from the northwestern Pacific region off northern Japan in order to estimate marine reservoir ages during the B⊘lling-Aller⊘d period. The ages of deglacial tephra markers from 2 Japanese source volcanoes identified in these sediment cores had been previously estimated from 14C ages of terrestrial charcoal and buried forests. By comparing the foraminiferal and tephra ages, we estimated the surface water reservoir age during the B⊘lling-Aller⊘d period to be ∼1000 yr or more in the region off northern Japan. The deglacial reservoir ages were more than 200 yr higher than the Holocene values of ∼800 yr. The older deglacial ages may have been caused by active upwelling of deep water during the last deglaciation and the consequent mixing of “older” deep water with “younger” surface waters.
Topological (GeTe)/(Sb2Te3) superlattices (SL) are of
practical interest for memory applications because of different mechanism of
electric conductance switching in the crystalline phase. In the work, electrical
switching behavior of individual SL grains was examined employing a multimode
scanning probe microscope (MSPM) in a lithography mode at room temperature.
Using programmed bias voltage with different amplitude and pulse duration, we
observed the position-dependent variations of the switching voltage and the
current injection delay for [(GeTe)2
(Sb2Te3)]4 SLs on Si(100). The results shed
a light on the role of electric field and hot-electron injection on the SL
Shiga-toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) infections usually cause haemolytic uraemic syndrome (HUS) equally in male and female children. This study investigated the localization of globotriaosylceramide (Gb3) in human brain and kidney tissues removed from forensic autopsy cases in Japan. A fatal case was used as a positive control in an outbreak of diarrhoeal disease caused by STEC O157:H7 in a kindergarten in Urawa in 1990. Positive immunodetection of Gb3 was significantly more frequent in female than in male distal and collecting renal tubules. To correlate this finding with a clinical outcome, a retrospective analysis of the predictors of renal failure in the 162 patients of two outbreaks in Japan was performed: one in Tochigi in 2002 and the other in Kagawa Prefecture in 2005. This study concludes renal failure, including HUS, was significantly associated with female sex, and the odds ratio was 4·06 compared to male patients in the two outbreaks. From 2006 to 2009 in Japan, the risk factor of HUS associated with STEC infection was analysed. The number of males and females and the proportion of females who developed HUS were calculated by age and year from 2006 to 2009. In 2006, 2007 and 2009 in adults aged >20 years, adult women were significantly more at risk of developing HUS in Japan.
The present study aimed to investigate the correlation between mothers’ and children’s vegetable intake and whether children are conscious about their vegetable intake.
Cross-sectional study. Self-administered questionnaires for mothers and children, consisting of items regarding diet history, were distributed to children via homeroom teachers. We created dummy exposure variables for each quartile of mothers’ vegetable intake. Multiple regression analysis was performed with children’s vegetable intake as the outcome variable.
Two public elementary schools in a residential district of Tokyo, Japan.
Study participants were upper-grade children (aged 10–12 years) and their mothers (332 pairs of mothers and children).
The mean vegetable intake in mothers and children was 310 (sd 145) g/d and 276 (sd 105) g/d, respectively. A positive linear relationship was found between mothers’ and children’s vegetable intake even after adjustment for considerable covariates (P<0·001). When stratified by children’s consciousness, the positive linear relationship was more pronounced in children who were conscious of eating all their vegetables (P<0·001 for interaction with children’s consciousness).
Mothers’ vegetable intake was significantly correlated with children’s vegetable intake. However, this correlation was stronger in children who were conscious of eating all their vegetables. Our findings suggest that enhancing mother’s vegetable intake and health consciousness of children are indispensable prerequisites for increasing vegetable intake among children.