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Protein undernutrition contributes to the development of various diseases in broad generations. Urinary metabolites may serve as non-invasive biomarkers of protein undernutrition; however, this requires further investigation. We aimed to identify novel urinary metabolites as biomarker candidates responsive to protein undernutrition. Adult rats were fed control (CT; 14 % casein) or isoenergetic low-protein (LP; 5 % casein) diets for 4 weeks. 1H NMR metabolomics was applied to urine, plasma and liver samples to identify metabolites responsive to protein undernutrition. Liver samples were subjected to mRNA microarray and quantitative PCR analyses to elucidate the mechanisms causing fluctuations in identified metabolites. Urinary taurine levels were significantly lower in the LP group than in the CT group at week 1 and remained constant until week 4. Hepatic taurine level and gene expression level of cysteine dioxygenase type 1 were also significantly lower in the LP group than in the CT group. Urinary trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO) levels were significantly higher in the LP group than in the CT group at week 2 and remained constant until week 4. Hepatic TMAO level and gene expression levels of flavin-containing mono-oxygenase 1 and 5 were also significantly higher in the LP group than in the CT group. In conclusion, urinary taurine and TMAO levels substantially responded to protein undernutrition. Furthermore, changes in hepatic levels of these metabolites and gene expressions associated with their metabolic pathways were also reflected in their fluctuating urinary levels. Thus, taurine and TMAO could act as non-invasive urinary biomarker candidates to detect protein undernutrition.
The redox state of plasma albumin would reflect albumin synthesis rate, and could be useful to demonstrate the presence of potential protein undernutrition. Aiming to delineate the characteristics of plasma albumin redox state as a nutritional biomarker, adult male Wistar rats were maintained on AIN-93M (14% casein, control diet) or an AIN-93M-based low protein diet (5% casein) ad libitum for 4 weeks, and the two groups were compared by examining plasma albumin redox state, plasma/serum levels of conventional biomarkers for protein nutritional status, and plasma proteome. While no significant difference was seen in body weight at the end of the experimental period, plantaris muscle mass trended lower in the low protein diet group, implicating the manifestation of moderate protein undernutrition. The redox of plasma albumin was shifted to more oxidized state in the low protein diet group, and the shift persisted during the entire experimental period. In contrast, the levels of conventional biomarkers, plasma albumin and prealbumin, were initially decreased in the low protein diet group, and the differences were then dissolved later in the experimental period. Similarly, the levels of other biomarkers, plasma transferrin and serum retinol-binding protein-4, did not differ significantly at the end of the experimental period. Plasma proteomic analysis revealed that the abundances of proteins that constitute high-density lipoprotein (HDL), apolipoprotein A-II and paraoxonase-1, were decreased in the low protein diet group, which were then validated by confirming decreases in plasma HDL level, plasma HDL-cholesterol level, and serum paraoxonase-1 activity in the low protein diet group. According to epidemiological reports, dietary protein intake is positively associated with plasma HDL-cholesterol level, and the risk factors of cardiovascular diseases, including lower HDL-cholesterol level, are closely related to frailty. Thus, it can be conceived that moderate dietary protein insufficiency would increase cardiovascular risks, such as reduction in HDL level and function (paraoxonase-1 activity), which could prime the onset of amyotropic diseases later in life, such as sarcopenia and frailty. Collectively, moderate dietary protein insufficiency would lead to decreased skeletal muscle mass, and also attenuate circulating HDL level and function, which could even aggravate the attenuation of skeletal muscle accretion; the redox state of plasma albumin would be instrumental over conventional biomarkers as an indicator of potentially protein undernourished status.
We identified a waterborne pseudo-outbreak of Mycobacterium chimaera in our stem cell transplantation center, which likely resulted from biofilm on the aerators of the handwashing machines in each patient’s room. Regular replacement of faucet parts can prevent biofilm formation and pseudo-outbreaks of M. chimaera through aerators.
Studies on the intake of different types of carbohydrates and long-term mortality are sparse. We examined the association of starch, total and each type of sugar and free sugars with the risk of total and cause-specific mortality in a cohort of the general population in Japan. Study subjects were 29 079 residents from the Takayama Study, Japan, who responded to a self-administered questionnaire in 1992. Diet was assessed by a validated FFQ at the baseline. Mortality was ascertained during 16 years of follow-up. We noted 2901 deaths (974 cancer related and 775 cardiovascular related) in men and 2438 death (646 cancer related and 903 cardiovascular related) in women. In men, intake of starch was inversely associated with total mortality after controlling for covariates (hazard ratio (HR) for the highest quartile v. lowest quartile: 0·71; 95 % CI 0·60, 0·84; Ptrend < 0·001). Intakes of total sugars, glucose, fructose, sucrose, maltose and free and naturally occurring sugars were significantly positively associated with total mortality in men (HR for the highest v. lowest quartile of total sugar: 1·27; 95 % CI 1·12, 1·45; Ptrend < 0·0001). Similar relations were observed for cardiovascular mortality and non-cancer, non-cardiovascular mortality in men. In women, there was no significant association between any type of carbohydrates and mortality except that intake of free sugars was significantly positively associated with total and non-cancer, non-cardiovascular mortality. Data suggest that the high intake of starch reduces mortality, whereas the high intake of sugars, including glucose, fructose and sucrose, increases mortality in Japanese men.
We present a numerical analysis of the rheology of a suspension of red blood cells (RBCs) in a wall-bounded shear flow. The flow is assumed as almost inertialess. The suspension of RBCs, modelled as biconcave capsules whose membrane follows the Skalak constitutive law, is simulated for a wide range of viscosity ratios between the cytoplasm and plasma,
–10, for volume fractions up to
and for different capillary numbers (
). Our numerical results show that an RBC at low
tends to orient to the shear plane and exhibits so-called rolling motion, a stable mode with higher intrinsic viscosity than the so-called tumbling motion. As
increases, the mode shifts from the rolling to the swinging motion. Hydrodynamic interactions (higher volume fraction) also allow RBCs to exhibit tumbling or swinging motions resulting in a drop of the intrinsic viscosity for dilute and semi-dilute suspensions. Because of this mode change, conventional ways of modelling the relative viscosity as a polynomial function of
cannot be simply applied in suspensions of RBCs at low volume fractions. The relative viscosity for high volume fractions, however, can be well described as a function of an effective volume fraction, defined by the volume of spheres of radius equal to the semi-middle axis of a deformed RBC. We find that the relative viscosity successfully collapses on a single nonlinear curve independently of
except for the case with
, where the fit works only in the case of low/moderate volume fraction, and fails in the case of a fully dense suspension.
Epidemiological studies suggest that coffee consumption is inversely associated with all-cause and cause-specific mortality. Evidence from studies targeting non-white, non-Western populations is still sparse, although coffee is popular and widely consumed in Asian countries.
Population-based, prospective cohort study. We used Cox proportional hazards models with adjustment for dietary and lifestyle factors to estimate associations between coffee consumption and all-cause and cause-specific mortality. Dietary intake including coffee consumption was assessed only at baseline using a validated FFQ.
A Japanese city.
Individuals aged 35 years or older without cancer, CHD and stroke at baseline (n 29 079) and followed from 1992 to 2008.
From 410 352 person-years, 5339 deaths were identified (mean follow-up = 14·1 years). Coffee consumption was inversely associated with mortality from all causes and CVD among all participants, but not from cancer. Compared with the category of ‘none’, the multivariate hazard ratio (95 % CI) for all-cause mortality was 0·93 (0·86, 1·00) for <1 cup/d, 0·84 (0·76, 0·93) for 1 cup/d and 0·81 (0·71, 0·92) for 2–3 cups/d. The multivariate hazard ratio (95 % CI) for cardiovascular mortality were 0·87 (0·77, 0·99) for <1 cup/d, 0·76 (0·63, 0·92) for 1 cup/d and 0·67 (0·50, 0·89) for 2–3 cups/d. Inverse associations were also observed for mortality from other causes, specifically infectious and digestive diseases.
Drinking coffee, even 1 cup/d, was inversely associated with all-cause mortality and mortality from cardiovascular, infectious and digestive diseases.
Children are a vulnerable population in disasters. However, there were few pediatricians, neonatologists, and obstetricians in the Japan Disaster Medical Assistance Team (DMAT), so disaster medical headquarters had limited knowledge to solve these problems. Pediatric and perinatal disaster liaison coordinators were trained to improve disaster medical management for children and pregnant women since the 2016 Kumamoto earthquake.
To analyze and report the activity of PPDML during these years in Osaka, Japan.
The records of PPDML in major disasters and disaster drills from 2017 to 2018 were reviewed.
The DMAT had disaster drills twice a year in Osaka, and PPDML participated in the drill for the first time in July 2017. In the drill, PPDML coordinated the pediatric and perinatal issues with DMAT and Japan Ground Self-Defense Force (JGSDF) in disaster headquarters. In June 20184. months after the drill, PPDML participated for the second time in February 2018 when the North Osaka Earthquake occurred. PPDML coordinated transport of 22 children and babies with congenital heart disease from the damaged National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center Hospital. The operation was finished within 5 hours after requested transportation.
To protect children and pregnant women, cooperation between the disaster medical network and the pediatric and perinatal network is absolutely important for any phase in disaster. Because PPDML had attended in disaster drills before, the experience could make PPDML achieve good performance in a real disaster in North Osaka Earthquake. It can be concluded that cooperation between disaster medical network and PPDML is very useful to manage the disaster issues for children and pregnant women, and the most important thing is to cooperate not only in disaster but also in ordinary days.
We have succeeded in synthesizing organics, ‘Quenched Nitrogen-included Carbonaceous Composite (QNCC)’, via plasma chemical vapor deposition (CVD) method, whose infrared spectral properties reproduce the characteristics of the unidentified infrared (UIR) bands observed around classical novae. Past studies have shown that the UIR bands observed around novae appear somewhat differently from those observed in other astrophysical environment and are predominantly characterized by the presence of a broad 8μm feature. The remarkable similarity between the infrared properties of QNCC and the UIR bands in novae indicates that QNCC should be considered as a strong candidate of the carriers of the UIR bands in novae. Finally, we have started a space exposure experiment of QNCC aiming to explore the evolutional link between the QNCC and the insoluble organic molecule (IOM) in carbonaceous condrite and, thus, to infer the origins of organics in our solar system.
Although moving from institutional to home-like long-term care (LTC) settings can promote and sustain the health and wellbeing of older adults, there has been little research examining how home is perceived by older adults when moving between care settings. A qualitative study was conducted over a two-year period during the relocation of residents and staff from an institutional LTC home to a purpose-built LTC home in Western Canada. The study explored perceptions of home amongst residents, family members and staff. Accordingly, 210 semi-structured interviews were conducted at five time-points with 35 residents, 23 family members and 81 staff. Thematic analyses generated four superordinate themes that are suggestive of how to create and enhance a sense of home in LTC settings: (a) physical environment features; (b) privacy and personalisation; (c) autonomy, choice and flexibility; and (d) connectedness and togetherness. The findings reveal that the physical environment features are foundational for the emergence of social and personal meanings associated with a sense of home, and highlight the impact of care practices on the sense of home when the workplace becomes a home. In addition, tension that arises between providing care and creating a home-like environment in LTC settings is discussed.
With the recent discovery of a dozen dusty star-forming galaxies and around 30 quasars at z > 5 that are hyper-luminous in the infrared (μ LIR > 1013 L⊙, where μ is a lensing magnification factor), the possibility has opened up for SPICA, the proposed ESA M5 mid-/far-infrared mission, to extend its spectroscopic studies toward the epoch of reionisation and beyond. In this paper, we examine the feasibility and scientific potential of such observations with SPICA’s far-infrared spectrometer SAFARI, which will probe a spectral range (35–230 μm) that will be unexplored by ALMA and JWST. Our simulations show that SAFARI is capable of delivering good-quality spectra for hyper-luminous infrared galaxies at z = 5 − 10, allowing us to sample spectral features in the rest-frame mid-infrared and to investigate a host of key scientific issues, such as the relative importance of star formation versus AGN, the hardness of the radiation field, the level of chemical enrichment, and the properties of the molecular gas. From a broader perspective, SAFARI offers the potential to open up a new frontier in the study of the early Universe, providing access to uniquely powerful spectral features for probing first-generation objects, such as the key cooling lines of low-metallicity or metal-free forming galaxies (fine-structure and H2 lines) and emission features of solid compounds freshly synthesised by Population III supernovae. Ultimately, SAFARI’s ability to explore the high-redshift Universe will be determined by the availability of sufficiently bright targets (whether intrinsically luminous or gravitationally lensed). With its launch expected around 2030, SPICA is ideally positioned to take full advantage of upcoming wide-field surveys such as LSST, SKA, Euclid, and WFIRST, which are likely to provide extraordinary targets for SAFARI.
Miconia (Miconia calvescens DC) was introduced to the East Maui Watershed (EMW) a half-century ago with more than 25 yr of management recorded. Using a historical spatiotemporal data set, we constructed a leptokurtic dispersal kernel with 99% of progeny confined to within 549 m of the nearest maternal source and the remaining 1% dispersed out to 1,636 m. Seedbank persistence, based on postdated recruitment, displayed an exponential decay projecting extinction beyond 20 yr. These parameters are highly congruent to independent interpretations of M. calvescens in Australia and Tahiti. In a simulated stage matrix model, we projected management efforts to locally eradicate a small incipient propagule bank wherein optimal management was achieved with an annual harvest rate that eliminated all juvenile recruits before reaching maturity, until extinction. Based on current pricing for helicopter herbicide ballistic technology (HBT) operations, the optimal, variable cost to locally eradicate this incipient propagule bank was estimated to be less than US$42,000, with ~90% of the effort searching for the most distant 1% of the progeny expended within the first 9 yr after the mature discovery. This variable cost was sensitive to seedbank size, recruitment rate, and dispersal range, but was most sensitive to harvest rates between suboptimal and excess. In a scenario prioritizing the upper region of EMW, we retroactively analyzed past HBT efforts eliminating satellite M. calvescens and determined that 27% of the total effort resulted in 87% of the total protection to this priority asset, with every US$1 invested potentially avoiding US$184 in future costs. Management outside the priority area was less economical, with returns in protection diminishing with distance from the priority upper region. Miconia calvescens is currently not eradicable in the EMW, and full containment of the invasion would require a substantial increase in stable, long-term funding. With limited resources, local eradication of satellite M. calvescens could be the most cost-effective alternative to protecting uninvaded areas prioritized for critical ecosystem functions.
We collected peat sediments (sediment core ADK13083002) from Haven Lake on the north side of Adak Island (central Aleutian Islands, Alaska) to determine whether the vegetation has changed. We confirmed the presence of six tephra layers, including Forty Years (0.3 cal ka BP), T2, YBO (3.3 cal ka BP), Intermediate (6.4 cal ka BP), Main (9.5 cal ka BP), and T6. We identified four major pollen assemblage zones (HL-1 to HL-4, in descending order) in the cored sediment. HL-1 was dominated by Ranunculaceae and Empetrum pollen; H-2 was dominated by Poaceae, Ranunculaceae, and Empetrum pollen; HL-3 was dominated by Poaceae and Empetrum pollen; and HL-4 was dominated by Poaceae, Cyperaceae, Lycopodiaceae, and Empetrum pollen. Small charcoal particles, likely transported from a distance, were found at low frequencies until 6.4 cal ka BP. The total cross-sectional area of charcoal particles increased to 1500 μm2 or more by 6.4 cal ka BP, implying that the large charcoal particles originated from nearby Aleut settlements, which were established around the same time.
Measurements in the infrared wavelength domain allow direct assessment of the physical state and energy balance of cool matter in space, enabling the detailed study of the processes that govern the formation and evolution of stars and planetary systems in galaxies over cosmic time. Previous infrared missions revealed a great deal about the obscured Universe, but were hampered by limited sensitivity.
SPICA takes the next step in infrared observational capability by combining a large 2.5-meter diameter telescope, cooled to below 8 K, with instruments employing ultra-sensitive detectors. A combination of passive cooling and mechanical coolers will be used to cool both the telescope and the instruments. With mechanical coolers the mission lifetime is not limited by the supply of cryogen. With the combination of low telescope background and instruments with state-of-the-art detectors SPICA provides a huge advance on the capabilities of previous missions.
SPICA instruments offer spectral resolving power ranging from R ~50 through 11 000 in the 17–230 μm domain and R ~28.000 spectroscopy between 12 and 18 μm. SPICA will provide efficient 30–37 μm broad band mapping, and small field spectroscopic and polarimetric imaging at 100, 200 and 350 μm. SPICA will provide infrared spectroscopy with an unprecedented sensitivity of ~5 × 10−20 W m−2 (5σ/1 h)—over two orders of magnitude improvement over what earlier missions. This exceptional performance leap, will open entirely new domains in infrared astronomy; galaxy evolution and metal production over cosmic time, dust formation and evolution from very early epochs onwards, the formation history of planetary systems.
In the collapsing phase of a molecular cloud, the molecular gas temperature is a key to understand the evolutionary process from a dense molecular cloud to stars. In order to know this, mapping observations in NH3 lines are required. Therefore, we made them based on the FUGIN (FOREST Unbiased Galactic plane Imaging survey with Nobeyama 45m telescope). The 6 maps were observed in NH3 (J,K) = (1,1), (2,2), (3,3) and H2O maser lines and obtained temperature maps; some show temperature gradient in a cloud. Additionally 72 cores were observed. These candidates were called as KAGONMA or KAG objects as abbreviation of KAgoshima Galactic Object survey with Nobeyama 45-M telescope in Ammonia lines. We show the results of two regions in W33 and discuss their astrophysical properties.
The unidentified infrared (UIR) bands have been ubiquitously observed in various astrophysical environments and consist of a series of emission features arising from aromatic and/or aliphatic C-C and C-H bonds . Therefore, their carriers are thought to be related to interstellar organics. However, our knowledge on the true carriers of the UIR bands is still limited. Recently  has proposed Mixed Aromatic Aliphatic Organic Nanoparticles, which contains hetero atoms in addition to conventional hydrocarbon models, as a more realistic interpretation of the band carriers. The challenges toward identifying the carriers of the UIR bands are still ongoing. Past studies have shown that the UIR bands observed around classical novae, which characterized by the presence of broad feature around 8μm, are somewhat different from those observed in other astrophysical environment. Here we report the success of experimentally synthesizing the organics called Nitrogen-included Carbonaceous Compounds (NCC; ) whose infrared properties can reproduce the UIR bands observed in classical novae.
The electrochemical catalytic effects of the NiO islands and layer on n-type GaN were investigated. The NiO islands covered some parts of the GaN surface and were seen to improve photoanodic current and prevent photoanodic corrosion. However, the NiO layer was found to worsen the photoanodic current. Hole transportation is thought to occur from the GaN valence band edge to the NiO valence band edge in their surface plane direction due to the band alignment. In addition, the electron capture for water oxidation is expected to be the valence band edge of the NiO instead of the intermediate state.