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Previous studies have shown conflicting findings regarding the relationship between maternal vitamin D deficiency (VDD) and foetal growth restriction (FGR). We hypothesized that parathyroid hormone (PTH) may be an underlying factor relevant to this potential association. In a prospective birth cohort study, descriptive statistics were evaluated for the demographic characteristics of 3407 pregnancies in the second trimester from three antenatal clinics in Hefei, China. The association of the combined status of VD and PTH with birth weight and the risk of small for gestational age (SGA) was assessed by a multivariate linear and binary logistic regression. We found that declined status of 25(OH) D are associated with the lower birth weight (for moderate VDD : adjusted β=-49.4 g, 95% CI: -91.1, -7.8, P <0.05; for severe VDD: adjusted β=-79.8 g, 95% CI: -127.2, -32.5, P <0.01), as well as ascended levels of PTH (for elevated PTH: adjusted β=-44.5 g, 95% CI: -82.6, -6.4, P <0.05). Compared to the non-VDD group with non-elevated PTH, pregnancies with severe VDD and elevated PTH had the lowest neonatal birthweight (adjusted β=-124.7 g, 95% CI: -194.6, -54.8, P <0.001) and the highest risk of SGA (adjusted RR=3.36, 95% CI: 1.41, 8.03, P <0.01). Notably, the highest risk of less calcium supplementation were founded in severe VDD group with elevated PTH (adjusted RR=4.67, 95% CI: 2.78, 7.85, P <0.001).
In conclusion, elevated PTH induced by less calcium supplementation would further aggravate the risk of FGR in pregnancies with severe VDD through impaired maternal calcium metabolism homeostasis.
Intelligent control of friction and adhesion has attracted much attention for use in soft robotics, human-sensor interfaces, and bionics. Here we introduce a shape memory photonic crystal (SMPC) polymer that can be programmed and recovered by solvent to realize switchable surface friction. Micro sliding test show that the friction coefficient on this SMPC in the programmed and recovered state can vary by three times. We also show that the mechanism behind this switchable friction coefficient is the surface roughness related adhesion.
Little is known about the maternal-to-neonatal intrapartum transmission of COVID-19 via vaginal route. In this study, we report the adverse pregnancy outcomes in pregnant women infected with COVID-19 pneumonia and the risk of intrapartum transmission of COVID-19 via vaginal route. None of the three neonates were infected with COVID-19 delivered via natural birth. Only one neonate was delivered prematurely. No neonatal death and stillbirth were observed in pregnant women infected with COVID-19. Moreover, all of the neonates had normal birth weight, birth length, and normal Apgar score.
In the process of composing a double-differenced positioning model, it is difficult to separate different frequency signals between code division multiple access (CDMA) systems, the single-difference ambiguity of the pivot satellite and phase differential inter-system biases (PDISBs). Hence it is difficult to calibrate in advance the bias between systems in order to build an inter-system model which only needs one pivot satellite. Based on analysis of the stability of PDISB parameters for non-overlapping frequency CDMA systems, this study adopts a particle filter to estimate the fractional part of the PDISBs (F-PDISBs) between the systems and proposes a particle filter-based inter-system positioning model. Results show that the F-PDISBs and code DISBs for the baselines with the same receiver types and some with different receiver types are rather stable over time and for these baselines it is feasible to use a particle filter to estimate the F-PDISB parameters in the initial stage. Having attained the F-PDISBs, the inter-system model can be constructed to improve positioning accuracy in complex operational environments.
Interfaces play critical roles in materials and are usually both structurally and compositionally complex microstructural features. The precise characterization of their nature in three-dimensions at the atomic scale is one of the grand challenges for microscopy and microanalysis, as this information is crucial to establish structure–property relationships. Atom probe tomography is well suited to analyzing the chemistry of interfaces at the nanoscale. However, optimizing such microanalysis of interfaces requires great care in the implementation across all aspects of the technique from specimen preparation to data analysis and ultimately the interpretation of this information. This article provides critical perspectives on key aspects pertaining to spatial resolution limits and the issues with the compositional analysis that can limit the quantification of interface measurements. Here, we use the example of grain boundaries in steels; however, the results are applicable for the characterization of grain boundaries and transformation interfaces in a very wide range of industrially relevant engineering materials.
Major depressive disorder (MDD) is a prevalent mental disorder characterized by impairments in affect, behaviour and cognition. Previous studies have indicated that the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) may play an essential role in the pathophysiology of depression. In this study, we systematically identified changes in functional connectivity (FC) for ACC subdivisions that manifest in MDD and further investigated the relationship between these changes and the clinical symptoms of depression.
Sub-regional ACC FC was estimated in 41 first-episode medication-naïve MDD patients compared to 43 healthy controls. The relationships between depressive symptom severity and aberrant FC of ACC subdivisions were investigated. In addition, we conducted a meta-analysis to generate the distributions of MDD-related abnormal regions from previously reported results and compared them to FC deficits revealed in this study.
In MDD patients, the subgenual and perigenual ACC demonstrated decreased FC with the posterior regions of the default network (DN), including the posterior inferior parietal lobule and posterior cingulate cortex. FC of these regions was negatively associated with the Automatic Thoughts Questionnaire scores and largely overlapped with previously reported abnormal regions. In addition, reduced FC between the caudal ACC and precuneus was negatively correlated with the Hamilton Anxiety Scale scores. We also found increased FC between the rostral ACC and dorsal medial prefrontal cortex.
Our findings confirmed that functional interaction changes in different ACC sub-regions are specific and associated with distinct symptoms of depression. Our findings provide new insights into the role of ACC sub-regions and DN in the pathophysiology of MDD.
This paper deals with stochastic comparisons of the largest order statistics arising from two sets of independent and heterogeneous gamma samples. It is shown that the weak supermajorization order between the vectors of scale parameters together with the weak submajorization order between the vectors of shape parameters imply the reversed hazard rate ordering between the corresponding maximum order statistics. We also establish sufficient conditions of the usual stochastic ordering in terms of the p-larger order between the vectors of scale parameters and the weak submajorization order between the vectors of shape parameters. Numerical examples and applications in auction theory and reliability engineering are provided to illustrate these results.
Evidence on the relationship between maternal Hb concentration and spontaneous abortion (SA) risk is limited and conflicting. The purpose of the study was to evaluate whether maternal preconception anaemia or high Hb concentration is associated with risk of SA.
A population-based cohort study established between 2013 and 2017.
Local maternal and child care service centres in each county.
In total, 3 971 428 women aged 20–49 years, who participated in National Free Pre-Pregnancy Checkups Project from 2013 to 2016 and successfully got pregnant before 2017 in rural China.
A total of 101 700 (2·56 %) women were recorded having SA, with highest SA rate in women with severe anaemia (4·58 %). Compared with women with Hb of 110–149 g/l, the multivariable-adjusted OR for SA was 1·52 (95 % CI: 1·25, 1·86) for women with Hb < 70 g/l, 0·92 (0·84, 1·01) for 70–99 g/l, 0·80 (0·77, 0·83) for 100–109 g/l, 1·11 (1·08, 1·15) for 150–159 g/l, 1·12 (1·04, 1·20) for 160–169 g/l and 1·02 (0·93, 1·12) for ≥ 170 g/l, respectively. An approximate U-shaped curve for the risk of SA with Hb concentrations was observed when Hb concentrations less than 145 g/l, above which the association plateaued (Pnon-linear < 0·001).
Severe anaemia and high Hb concentration before pregnancy were associated with an increased risk of SA. Women with mild anaemia prior to pregnancy had lower risk of SA. Underlying mechanisms need to be further studied.
The study investigated antioxidant effects of selenium (Se) on resilience to diquat-induced oxidative stress in nursery pigs. Thirty-five weaned pigs were individually housed and randomly assigned to one of five treatments. Pigs were 1) fed a basal diet and intraperitoneally injected with sterile saline (negative control, NC), 2) fed the basal diet and injected with diquat solution (positive control, PC), or fed the basal diet supplemented with 0.3 mg Se/kg as 3) sodium selenite (SS), 4) soybean protein chelated Se (SC) or 5) selenized yeast (SY) and intraperitoneally injected with diquat. Pigs were fed the experimental diets for 17 days and injected with diquat at 10 mg/kg BW or saline on the 11th day of the study (d 0 post-injection (PI)). Diquat exposure induced acute stress and innate immune activation (P < 0.05) at 6 h PI, and compromised (P < 0.05) plasma glutathione peroxidase activity on d 2 PI, which was accompanied by an increase in plasma malondialdehyde at 6 h and d 2 PI (P < 0.10). Organic Se, particularly SY, enhanced (P < 0.05) endogenous antioxidant activity in various aspects compared with PC group. The growth rate and feed intake from d 0 to 7 PI were significantly lower in PC, SS, and SC groups than NC group (P < 0.05). Untargeted metabolomics analysis revealed that 22 hepatic metabolites (False discovery rate < 0.15) associated with lipid and cellular antioxidants metabolism were altered by diquat. Selenized yeast restored hepatic metabolic profiles in some but not all samples.
In recent years, outbreaks of hand–foot–mouth disease (HFMD) in China, Singapore and other Western Pacific Region, involving millions of children, have become a big threat to public health. This study aimed to quantitatively assess all qualified studies and identify the risk factors for HFMD death. A systematic search of the databases PubMed, Medline, Embase and the Cochrane Library was performed. Study heterogeneity and publication bias were estimated. Seven case–control studies involving 1641 participants (634 died and 1007 survived) were included in the meta-analysis. Human enterovirus 71 infection, male, age ⩽3 years, vomiting, cyanosis, convulsion, duration of fever ⩾3 days, atypical rashes and abdominal distention were not significantly related to HFMD death (P ⩽ 0.05). Lethargy (odds ratio (OR) = 6.62; 95% CI 3.61–12.14; I2 = 0%; P < 0.0001), pneumonoedema/pneumorrhagia (OR = 4.09; 95% CI 2.44–6.87; I2 = 0%; P < 0.0001), seizures (OR = 6.85; 95% CI 2.37–19.74; I2 = 0%; P = 0.0004), dyspnoea (OR = 8.24; 95% CI 2.05–33.19; I2 = 83%; P = 0.003) and coma (OR = 3.76; 95% CI 1.85–7.67; I2 = 0%; P = 0.0003) were significantly associated with HFMD death, which were risk factors for HFMD death.
The study of the petrogenesis of some magmatic rocks with special geochemical attributes provides effective information for us to explore the deep geodynamic background of their formation. A series of granitic porphyry dykes have been found in the mélange zone of the Asa region in southern Tibet, whose genesis may be closely related to the evolution of the Meso-Tethyan Ocean. Regional geodynamic evolution is investigated by whole-rock geochemical analysis, zircon U–Pb dating and Lu–Hf isotopic analysis of two porphyritic granites. The Asa porphyritic granites have high SiO2 (74.29–78.65 wt %) and alkalis (Na2O + K2O = 6.51–9.35 wt %) contents, and low Al2O3 (11.60–14.51 wt %), CaO (0.04–0.19 wt MgO (0.01–0.10 wt %) contents. They are enriched in Zr, Nb, Ce, Y and Hf and depleted in Ti, Ba, Sr and P, consistent with A-type granites. The samples are relatively rich in LREEs, with LREE/HREE ratios of 1.73–3.04. They display negative Eu anomalies (Eu/Eu* = 0.24–0.28) and obvious Ce anomalies in some samples. Zircon U–Pb analyses show that the porphyritic granites formed in late Early Cretaceous time, 107.4 to 105.5 Ma. Zircon εHf(t) values are in the range of 6.9 to 12.0. These data indicate that the porphyritic granites were sourced from interaction between mantle-derived and juvenile lower crust-derived melts, with the addition of oceanic sediment-derived melts. This occurred when the subducting Bangong–Nujiang oceanic crust split to create a slab window. Rising asthenosphere triggered re-melting of lower crust basalts, resulting in the formation of the late Early Cretaceous A-type granites around Asa.
The aim of this study was to investigate the combined effect of n-3 fatty acids (EPA and DHA, at an EPA:DHA ratio of 150:500) and phytosterol esters (PS) on non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) patients. We conducted a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Ninety-six NAFLD subjects were randomly assigned to the following groups: the PS group (receiving 3·3 g/d PS); the FO group (receiving 450 mg EPA + 1500 mg DHA/d); the PS + FO combination group (receiving 3·3 g/d PS and 450 mg EPA + 1500 mg DHA/d) and the PO group (a placebo group). The baseline clinical characteristics of the four groups were similar. The primary outcome was liver:spleen attenuation ratio (L:S ratio). The percentage increase in liver–spleen attenuation (≤1) in the PS + FO group was 36 % (P = 0·083), higher than those in the other three groups (PS group, 11 %, P = 0·519; FO group, 18 %, P = 0·071; PO group, 15 %, P = 0·436). Compared with baseline, transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) was significantly decreased in the three study groups at the end of the trial (PS, P = 0·000; FO, P = 0·002; PS + FO, P = 0·001) and TNF-α was significantly decreased in the FO group (P = 0·036), PS + FO group (P = 0·005) and PO group (P = 0·032) at the end of the intervention. Notably, TGF-β was reduced significantly more in the PS + FO group than in the PO group (P = 0·032). The TAG and total cholesterol levels of the PS + FO group were reduced by 11·57 and 9·55 %, respectively. In conclusion, co-supplementation of PS and EPA + DHA could increase the effectiveness of treatment for hepatic steatosis.
Chinese sprangletop [Leptochloa chinensis (L.) Nees] is one grass weed severely affecting rice (Oryza sativa L.) growth in paddies in China. Cyhalofop-butyl is the main herbicide used to control grass weeds in Chinese paddy fields, especially for controlling L. chinensis; however, L. chinensis has evolved resistance to cyhalofop-butyl due to continuous and extensive application. To investigate cyhalofop-butyl resistance levels and mechanisms in L. chinensis in some of the Chinese rice areas, 66 field populations were collected and treated with cyhalofop-butyl. Of these tested populations, 10 showed a high level of resistance to cyhalofop-butyl; the 50% effective dose ranged within 108.4 to 1,443.5 g ai ha−1 with resistance index values of 9.1 to 121.8 when compared with the susceptible population. Acetyl-coenzyme A carboxylase genes (ACCase) of susceptible and all 10 resistant populations were amplified and sequenced. Among them, Ile-1781-Leu, Trp-2027-Cys, Trp-2027-Ser, and Ile-2041-Asn mutations were found in five resistant populations. No known resistance-related mutations were found in the other five resistant populations, indicating that resistance to cyhalofop-butyl in these populations was likely to be endowed by non–target site resistance mechanisms. Notably, the Ile-1781-Leu and Trp-2027-Cys substitutions have previously been reported, but this is the first report of Trp-2027-Ser and Ile-2041-Asn mutations in L. chinensis. Furthermore, three derived cleaved amplified polymorphic sequence methods were developed to rapidly detect these mutations in L. chinensis.
A new fast-growing mycobacterium, designated strain QGD101T, was isolated from the sputum of an 84-year-old man suspected of tuberculosis in Wuhan Medical Treatment Center, Hubei, China. This strain was a gram-staining-negative, aerobic, non-spore-forming and catalase-positive bacterium, which was further identified as the NTM by PNB and TCH tests. The moxifloxacin and levofloxacin exhibited strong suppressing function against QGD101T with MIC values of 0.06 and 0.125 µg/ml after drug susceptibility testing of six main antimicrobial agents on mycobacteria. Based on the sequence analysis of 16S rRNA, rpoB, hsp65 and 16S-23S rRNA internal transcribed spacer, the strain QGD101T could not be identified to a species level. Mycobacterium moriokaense ATCC43059T that shared the highest 16S rRNA gene sequence similarity (98%) with strain QGD101T was actually different in genomes average nucleotide identity (78.74%). In addition, the major cellular fatty acids of QGD101T were determined as C18:1ω9c, C16:0 and C18:2ω6c. The DNA G + C content was 64.9% measured by high performance liquid chromatography. Therefore, the phenotypic and genotypic characterisation of this strain led us to the conclusion that it represents a novel species of mycobacteria, for which the name Mycobacterium hubeiense sp. nov. (type strain QGD101T = CCTCCAA 2017003T = KCTC39927T) was proposed. Thus, the results of this study are very significant for the clinical diagnosis of tuberculosis and future personalised medicine.
Heat shock proteins (HSPs) consist of highly preserved stress proteins that are expressed in response to stress. Two studies were carried out to investigate whether HSP genes in hair follicles from beef calves can be suggested as indicators of heat stress (HS). In study 1, hair follicles were harvested from three male Hanwoo calves (aged 172.2 ± 7.20 days) on six dates over the period of 10 April to 9 August 2017. These days provided varying temperature–humidity indices (THIs). In study 2, 16 Hanwoo male calves (aged 169.6 ± 4.60 days, with a BW of 136.9 ± 6.23 kg) were maintained (4 calves per experiment) in environmentally controlled chambers. A completely randomized design with a 2 × 4 factorial arrangement involving two periods (thermoneutral: TN; HS) and four THI treatment groups (threshold: THI = 68 to 70; mild: THI = 74 to 76; moderate THI = 81 to 83; severe: THI = 88 to 90). The calves in the different group were subjected to ambient temperature (22°C) for 7 days (TN) and subsequently to the temperature and humidity corresponding to the target THI level for 21 days (HS). Every three days (at 1400 h) during both the TN and HS periods, the heart rate (HR) and rectal temperature (RT) of each individual were measured, and hair follicles were subsequently collected from the tails of each individual. In study 1, the high variation (P < 0.0001) in THI indicated that the external environment influenced the HS to different extents. The expression levels of the HSP70 and HSP90 genes at the high-THI level were higher (P = 0.0120, P = 0.0002) than those at the low-THI level. In study 2, no differences in the THI (P = 0.2638), HR (P = 0.2181) or RT (P = 0.3846) were found among the groups during the TN period, whereas differences in these indices (P < 0.0001, P < 0.0001 and P < 0.0001, respectively) were observed during the HS period. The expression levels of the HSP70 (P = 0.0010, moderate; P = 0.0065, severe) and HSP90 (P = 0.0040, severe) genes were increased after rapid exposure to heat-stress conditions (moderate and severe levels). We conclude that HSP gene expression in hair follicles provides precise and accurate data for evaluating HS and can be considered a novel indicator of HS in Hanwoo calves maintained in both external and climatic chambers.
Q fever (caused by Coxiella burnetii) is thought to have an almost world-wide distribution, but few countries have conducted national serosurveys. We measured Q fever seroprevalence using residual sera from diagnostic laboratories across Australia. Individuals aged 1–79 years in 2012–2013 were sampled to be proportional to the population distribution by region, distance from metropolitan areas and gender. A 1/50 serum dilution was tested for the Phase II IgG antibody against C. burnetii by indirect immunofluorescence. We calculated crude seroprevalence estimates by age group and gender, as well as age standardised national and metropolitan/non-metropolitan seroprevalence estimates. Of 2785 sera, 99 tested positive. Age standardised seroprevalence was 5.6% (95% confidence interval (CI 4.5%–6.8%), and similar in metropolitan (5.5%; 95% CI 4.1%–6.9%) and non-metropolitan regions (6.0%; 95%CI 4.0%–8.0%). More males were seropositive (6.9%; 95% CI 5.2%–8.6%) than females (4.2%; 95% CI 2.9%–5.5%) with peak seroprevalence at 50–59 years (9.2%; 95% CI 5.2%–13.3%). Q fever seroprevalence for Australia was higher than expected (especially in metropolitan regions) and higher than estimates from the Netherlands (2.4%; pre-outbreak) and US (3.1%), but lower than for Northern Ireland (12.8%). Robust country-specific seroprevalence estimates, with detailed exposure data, are required to better understand who is at risk and the need for preventive measures.
SmTaO4 ceramics have excellent high-temperature phase stabilities and mechanical properties and show great potential for use as next-generation thermal barrier coating (TBC) materials. CeO2–SmTaO4 ceramics are prepared via high-temperature solid–state reaction. It retains a single monoclinic phase structure. Ce4+ was reduced to Ce3+ by high-temperature deoxidation, and the Ce3+ ions substitute for an equal number of Sm3+ ions. The CeO2–SmTaO4 ceramics had lower thermal conductivities [1.09–2.75 W/(m K)] than yttria-stabilized zirconia (YSZ) [2.1–2.7 W/(m K)] at 100–800 °C, which decreased dramatically with increasing temperature. SmTaO4 doped with 2% CeO2 had lower thermal conductivity [1.09 W/(m K), 800 °C] than SmTaO4 [1.42 W/(m K), 800 °C] and 2% ZrO2-doped SmTaO4 ceramics [1.22 W/(m K), 800 °C]. The low thermal conductivity is attributed to Ce3+ substitution for an equal number of Sm3+ ions, and because Ce3+ ions are the strongest phonon scattering centers, they can decrease the phonon mean free path effectively. The thermal expansion coefficient of 8% CeO2–SmTaO4 ceramics is approximately 10.3 × 10−6 K−1 at 1200 °C, which is slightly higher than that of both YSZ (10.0 × 10−6 K−1) and SmTaO4 (9.58 × 10−6 K−1). The outstanding thermophysical properties indicate that CeO2–SmTaO4 ceramics are potential TBC materials.
A dual-arm space robot has large potentials in on-orbit servicing. However, there exist multiple dynamic coupling effects between the two arms, each arm, and the base, bringing great challenges to the trajectory planning and dynamic control of the dual-arm space robotic system. In this paper, we propose a dynamic coupling modeling and analysis method for a dual-arm space robot. Firstly, according to the conservation principle of the linear and angular momentum, the dynamic coupling between the base and each manipulator is deduced. The dynamic coupling factor is then defined to evaluate the dynamic coupling degree. Secondly, the dynamic coupling equations between the two arms, each arm, and the base are deduced, respectively. The dynamic coupling factor is suitable not only for single-arm space robots but also for multi-arm space robot systems. Finally, the multiple coupling effects of the dual-arm space robotic system are analyzed in detail through typical cases. Simulation results verified the proposed method.