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Flexibility is one of the important mechanical performance parameters of stent. The flexibility of tapered stents, especially self-expanding tapered stents, remains unknown. In this study, we developed a new selfexpanding tapered stent for tapered arteries and performed a numerical investigation of stent flexibility by using finite element method. The effect of stent design parameters, including taper and link space width, on stent flexibility was studied. The flexibility of the proposed stent was also compared with that of traditional cylindrical stents. Results show that the tapered stent is more flexible than the traditional cylindrical stent. Furthermore, the flexibility of the tapered stent increases with increasing stent taper and stent link space width. The increase in the stent link space width can contribute to the reduction in the peak stress. Therefore, tapered stents with high link space width will improve the stent flexibility. This work provides useful information for improvement of stent design and clinical selection.
The aim of this study was to develop and externally validate a simple-to-use nomogram for predicting the survival of hospitalised human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS) patients (hospitalised person living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHAs)). Hospitalised PLWHAs (n = 3724) between January 2012 and December 2014 were enrolled in the training cohort. HIV-infected inpatients (n = 1987) admitted in 2015 were included as the external-validation cohort. The least absolute shrinkage and selection operator method was used to perform data dimension reduction and select the optimal predictors. The nomogram incorporated 11 independent predictors, including occupation, antiretroviral therapy, pneumonia, tuberculosis, Talaromyces marneffei, hypertension, septicemia, anaemia, respiratory failure, hypoproteinemia and electrolyte disturbances. The Likelihood χ2 statistic of the model was 516.30 (P = 0.000). Integrated Brier Score was 0.076 and Brier scores of the nomogram at the 10-day and 20-day time points were 0.046 and 0.071, respectively. The area under the curves for receiver operating characteristic were 0.819 and 0.828, and precision-recall curves were 0.242 and 0.378 at two time points. Calibration plots and decision curve analysis in the two sets showed good performance and a high net benefit of nomogram. In conclusion, the nomogram developed in the current study has relatively high calibration and is clinically useful. It provides a convenient and useful tool for timely clinical decision-making and the risk management of hospitalised PLWHAs.
Vessel flexure can be triggered naturally by surgical operation, heart pulsation and body movement. It may affect the mechanical behavior of the stent and the existence of a stent may in turn cause vessel injury. In the present study, the finite element method is employed to study the interaction between stent and vessel during vessel flexure. Two- and four-link stents made of stainless steel 316L and magnesium alloy WE43 are considered. Results indicate that longitudinal deformation of the stent can be caused by vessel flexure, and the higher levels of stress exist in the link struts. The existence of the stent could induce significant stress concentration and straightened deformation on vessel wall in the course of vessel flexure. Stents with more links or made of harder materials show greater anti-deformation capability, thus inducing a more severe stress concentration and straightened deformation on the vessel wall. The bending direction also affects the mechanical performance of the vessel-stent system. The results obtained could provide useful information for better stent designs and clinical decisions.
Monolithic large-aperture diffraction grating tiling is desired to increase the output capability of multi-kilojoule petawatt laser facilities. However, the wavefront errors of input pulse and gratings will degrade the focal spot quality and the compressibility of the output pulse. In this work, the effects of wavefront error of input pulse, deformation and wave aberration of the grating for the large-aperture tiled-grating compressor are investigated theoretically. A series of numerical simulations are presented to discuss the changing trends of focal spot energy caused by wavefront error of input pulse and obtain the error tolerance for specific goals. The influences of coating stress and the wave aberration of holographic exposure gratings on the diffraction wavefront are also discussed. Some advice is proposed for improving the performance of large-aperture tiled-grating. This work paves the way for the design of practical large-aperture tiled-grating compressor for ultrahigh intensity laser facilities in the future.
Muons produced by the Bethe–Heitler process from laser wakefield accelerated electrons interacting with high
materials have velocities close to the laser wakefield. It is possible to accelerate those muons with laser wakefield directly. Therefore for the first time we propose an all-optical ‘Generator and Booster’ scheme to accelerate the produced muons by another laser wakefield to supply a prompt, compact, low cost and controllable muon source in laser laboratories. The trapping and acceleration of muons are analyzed by one-dimensional analytic model and verified by two-dimensional particle-in-cell (PIC) simulation. It is shown that muons can be trapped in a broad energy range and accelerated to higher energy than that of electrons for longer dephasing length. We further extrapolate the dependence of the maximum acceleration energy of muons with the laser wakefield relativistic factor
and the relevant initial energy
. It is shown that a maximum energy up to 15.2 GeV is promising with
on the existing short pulse laser facilities.
Relativistic collisionless shock charged particle acceleration is considered as a possible origin of high-energy cosmic rays. However, it is hard to explore the nature of relativistic collisionless shock due to its low occurring frequency and remote detecting distance. Recently, there are some works attempt to solve this problem by generating relativistic collisionless shock in laboratory conditions. In laboratory, the scheme of generation of relativistic collisionless shock is that two electron–positron pair plasmas knock each other. However, in laboratory, the appropriate pair plasmas have been not generated. The 10 PW laser pulse maybe generates the pair plasmas that satisfy the formation condition of relativistic collisionless shock due to its ultrahigh intensity and energy. In this paper, we study the positron production by ultraintense laser high Z target interaction using numerical simulations, which consider quantum electrodynamics effect. The simulation results show that the forward positron beam up to 1013/kJ can be generated by 10 PW laser pulse interacting with lead target. The estimation of relativistic collisionless shock formation shows that the positron yield satisfies formation condition and the positron divergence needs to be controlled. Our results indicate that the generation of relativistic collisionless shock by 10 PW laser facilities in laboratory is possible.
Large numbers of high quality graphene transistors were fabricated by chemical vapor deposition and packaged into a standard electronics assembly, enabling the readout of graphene properties on the benchtop. After chemical functionalization, these sensors demonstrate sensitivity into the pM range to inflammation (IL6) and Zika virus (ZIKV NS1) biomarkers. Signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of graphene biosensors is over an order of magnitude greater than established diagnostic and biophysical assays, namely ELISA and BLI respectively. High precision measurements of protein kinetics captured using this technology, commercially available as the AGILE R100, are comparable to both clinical diagnostic and state-of-the-art biomolecule characterization tools. These results demonstrate that graphene-based platforms are highly attractive biological sensors for next generation diagnostics.
This paper focuses on the attitude dynamics and control of liquid filled spacecraft, and the large amplitude fuel slosh dynamics is included by using an improved moving pulsating ball model. The moving pulsating ball model is an equivalent mechanical model that is capable of imitating the whole liquid reorientation process, specifically for the occurrence of large amplitude slosh. This model is improved by incorporating a static capillary force and an effective mass factor. The improvements on this model are validated with previously published experiment results. The spacecraft attitude maneuver is implemented by the momentum transfer technique, and the feedback control strategy is designed based on Lyapunov theory. The effects of liquid viscosity, tank location and desired steady time on sloshing torque and control torque are investigated. The attitude control strategy applied in this paper is proved to be applicable for the coupled liquid filled spacecraft system. The obtained conclusions are useful to aid in liquid filled spacecraft overall design.
The genetic influences in human brain structure and function and impaired functional connectivities are the hallmarks of the schizophrenic brain. To explore how common genetic variants affect the connectivities in schizophrenia, we applied genome-wide association studies assaying the abnormal neural connectivities in schizophrenia as quantitative traits.
We recruited 161 first-onset and treatment-naive patients with schizophrenia and 150 healthy controls. All the participants underwent scanning with a 3 T-magnetic resonance imaging scanner to acquire structural and functional imaging data and genotyping using the HumanOmniZhongHua-8 BeadChip. The brain-wide association study approach was employed to account for the inherent modular nature of brain connectivities.
We found differences in four abnormal functional connectivities [left rectus to left thalamus (REC.L–THA.L), left rectus to right thalamus (REC.L–THA.R), left superior orbital cortex to left thalamus (ORBsup.L–THA.L) and left superior orbital cortex to right thalamus (ORBsup.L–THA.R)] between the two groups. Univariate single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)-based association revealed that the SNP rs6800381, located nearest to the CHRM3 (cholinergic receptor, muscarinic 3) gene, reached genomic significance (p = 1.768 × 10−8) using REC.L–THA.R as the phenotype. Multivariate gene-based association revealed that the FAM12A (family with sequence similarity 12, member A) gene nearly reached genomic significance (nominal p = 2.22 × 10–6, corrected p = 0.05).
Overall, we identified the first evidence that the CHRM3 gene plays a role in abnormal thalamo-orbital frontal cortex functional connectivity in first-episode treatment-naive patients with schizophrenia. Identification of these genetic variants using neuroimaging genetics provides insights into the causes of variability in human brain development, and may help us determine the mechanisms of dysfunction in schizophrenia.
Escherichia albertii is a newly emerging enteric pathogen that has been associated with gastroenteritis in humans. Recently, E. albertii has also been detected in healthy and sick birds, animals, chicken meat and water. In the present study, the prevalence and characteristics of the eae-positive, lactose non-fermenting E. albertii strains in retail raw meat in China were evaluated. Thirty isolates of such strains of E. albertii were identified from 446 (6·73%) samples, including duck intestines (21·43%, 6/28), duck meat (9·52%, 2/21), chicken intestines (8·99%, 17/189), chicken meat (5·66%, 3/53), mutton meat (4·55%, 1/22) and pork meat (2·44%, 1/41). None was isolated from 92 samples of raw beef meat. Strains were identified as E. albertii by phenotypic properties, diagnostic PCR, sequence analysis of the 16S rRNA gene, and housekeeping genes. Five intimin subtypes were harboured by these strains. All strains possessed the II/III/V subtype group of the cdtB gene, with two strains carrying another copy of the I/IV subtype group. Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis showed high genetic diversity of E. albertii in raw meats. Our findings indicate that E. albertii can contaminate various raw meats, posing a potential threat to public health.
The soft scales (Hemiptera: Coccoidea: Coccidae) are a group of sap-sucking plant parasites, many of which are notorious agricultural pests. The quarantine and economic importance of soft scales necessitates rapid and reliable identification of these taxa. Nucleotide sequences of the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) gene (barcoding region) and 28S rDNA were generated from 340 individuals of 36 common soft scales in China. Distance-based [(best match, Automated Barcode Gap Discovery (ABGD)], tree-based (neighbor-joining, Bayesian inference), Klee diagrams, and general mixed Yule coalescent (GMYC) models were used to evaluate barcoding success rates in the data set. Best match showed that COI and 28S sequences could provide 100 and 95.52% correct identification, respectively. The average interspecific divergences were 19.81% for COI data and 20.38% for 28S data, and mean intraspecific divergences were 0.56 and 0.07%, respectively. For COI data, multiple methods (ABGD, Klee, and tree-based methods) resulted in general congruence with morphological identifications. However, GMYC analysis tended to provide more molecular operational taxonomic units (MOTUs). Twelve MOTUs derived from five morphospecies (Rhodococcus sariuoni, Pulvinaria vitis, Pulvinaria aurantii, Parasaissetia nigra, and Ceroplastes rubens) were observed using the GMYC approach. In addition, tree-based methods showed that 28S sequences could be used for species-level identification (except for Ceroplastes ceriferus – Ceroplastes pseudoceriferus), even with low genetic variation (<1%). This report demonstrates the robustness of DNA barcoding for species discrimination of soft scales with two molecular markers (COI and 28S) and provides a reliable barcode library and rapid diagnostic tool for common soft scales in China.
This study was conducted to determine the effects on intestinal function, anti-inflammatory role and possible mechanism of polyethylene glycosylated (PEGylated) porcine glucagon-like peptide-2 (pGLP-2), a long-acting form of pGLP-2, in weaning piglets challenged with Escherichia coli lipopolysaccharide (LPS). We divided 18 weaned piglets on day 21 into three groups (control, LPS and LPS+PEG-pGLP-2; n=6). The piglets from the LPS+PEG-pGLP-2 group were injected with PEG-pGLP-2 at 10 nmol/kg BW from 5 to 7 days of the trials daily. On 8th day, the piglets in the LPS and LPS+PEG-pGLP-2 groups were intraperitoneally administered with 100 µg LPS/kg. The control group was administered with the same volume of saline solution. The piglets were then sacrificed on day 28. Afterwards, serum, duodenum, jejunum and ileum samples were collected for analysis of structural and functional endpoints. LPS+PEG-pGLP-2 treatment increased (P<0.05) lactase activities in the duodenum and the jejunum compared with LPS treatment. LPS+PEG-pGLP-2 treatment also significantly increased sucrase activity in the jejunum compared with LPS treatment. Furthermore, LPS treatment increased (P<0.05) the mRNA expression levels of interleukin (IL)-8, tumour necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and IL-10 in the ileum compared with the control treatment. By contrast, LPS+PEG-pGLP-2 treatment decreased (P<0.05) the mRNA expression levels of IL-8, IL-10 and TNF-α in the ileum compared with the LPS treatment. LPS treatment also increased (P<0.05) the mRNA expression level of GLP-2 receptor (GLP-2R) and the percentage of GLP-2R-positive cells in the ileum; by comparison, these results were (P<0.05) reduced by LPS+PEG-pGLP-2 treatment. Moreover, LPS+PEG-pGLP-2 treatment increased (P<0.05) the content of serum keratinocyte growth factor compared with the control group and the LPS group. The protective effects of PEG-pGLP-2 on intestinal digestive function were associated with the release of GLP-2R mediator (keratinocyte growth factor) and the decrease in the expressions of intestinal pro-inflammatory cytokines.
Ten leading varieties of winter wheat released during 1950–2009 in North China were tested in a free-air temperature increase (FATI) facility. The FATI facility mimicked the local air temperature pattern well, with an increase of 1·1 °C in the daily mean temperature. For all the tested varieties, warming caused a significant reduction in the total length of wheat growth period by 5 days and especially in the pre-anthesis period, where it was reduced by 9 days. However, warming increased wheat biomass production and grain yield by 8·4 and 11·4%, respectively, on an average of all the tested varieties. There was no significant difference in the warming-led reduction in the entire growth period among the tested varieties. Interestingly, the warming-led increments in biomass production and grain yield increased along with the variety release year. Significantly higher warming-led increases in post-anthesis biomass production and 1000-grain weight were found in the new varieties compared to the old ones. Meanwhile, a significant improvement in plant productivity was noted due to wheat breeding during the past six decades, while no significant difference in the length of entire growth period was found among the varieties released in different eras. The results demonstrate that historical wheat breeding might have enhanced winter wheat productivity and adaptability through exploiting the positive effects rather than mitigating the negative impacts of warming on wheat growth in North China.
Chitotriosidase, secreted by activated macrophages, is a biomarker of activated macrophages. In this study, we explored whether chitotriosidase could be adopted as a biomarker to evaluate the curative effect on tuberculosis (TB). Five counties were randomly selected out of 122 counties/cities/districts in Hunan Province, China. Our cases were all TB patients who were newly diagnosed or had been receiving treatment at the Centers for Disease Control (CDCs) of these five counties between April and August in 2009. Healthy controls were selected from a community health facility in the Kaifu district of Changsha City after frequency-matching of gender and age with the cases. Chitotriosidase activity was evaluated by a fluorometric assay. Categorical variables were analysed with the χ2 test. Measurement data in multiple groups were tested with analysis of variance and least significant difference (LSD). Correlation between chitotriosidase activity and the degree of radiological extent (DRE) was examined by Spearman's rank correlation test. The average chitotriosidase activity levels of new TB cases, TB cases with different periods of treatment (<3, 3–6, >6 months) and the control group were 54·47, 34·77, 21·54, 12·73 and 10·53 nmol/h.ml, respectively. Chitotriosidase activity in TB patients declined along with the continuity of treatment. The chitotriosidase activity of both smear-positive and the smear-negative pulmonary TB patients decreased after 6 months' treatment to normal levels (P < 0·05). Moreover, chitotriosidase activity was positively correlated with DRE (r = 0·607, P < 0·001). Our results indicate that chitotriosidase might be a marker of TB treatment effects. However, further follow-up study of TB patients is needed in the future.
Despite substantial research, uncertainty remains about the clinical and etiological heterogeneity of major depression (MD). Can meaningful and valid subtypes be identified and would they be stable cross-culturally?
Symptoms at their lifetime worst depressive episode were assessed at structured psychiatric interview in 6008 women of Han Chinese descent, age ⩾30 years, with recurrent DSM-IV MD. Latent class analysis (LCA) was performed in Mplus.
Using the nine DSM-IV MD symptomatic A criteria, the 14 disaggregated DSM-IV criteria and all independently assessed depressive symptoms (n = 27), the best LCA model identified respectively three, four and six classes. A severe and non-suicidal class was seen in all solutions, as was a mild/moderate subtype. An atypical class emerged once bidirectional neurovegetative symptoms were included. The non-suicidal class demonstrated low levels of worthlessness/guilt and hopelessness. Patterns of co-morbidity, family history, personality, environmental precipitants, recurrence and body mass index (BMI) differed meaningfully across subtypes, with the atypical class standing out as particularly distinct.
MD is a clinically complex syndrome with several detectable subtypes with distinct clinical and demographic correlates. Three subtypes were most consistently identified in our analyses: severe, atypical and non-suicidal. Severe and atypical MD have been identified in multiple prior studies in samples of European ethnicity. Our non-suicidal subtype, with low levels of guilt and hopelessness, may represent a pathoplastic variant reflecting Chinese cultural influences.
The survival behaviour of Vibrio cholerae in cholera epidemics, together with its attributes of virulence-associated genes and molecular fingerprints, are significant for managing cholera epidemics. Here, we selected five strains representative of V. cholerae O1 and O139 involved in cholera events, examined their survival capacity in large volumes of water sampled from epidemic sites of a 2005 cholera outbreak, and determined virulence-associated genes and molecular subtype changes of the surviving isolates recovered. The five strains exhibited different survival capacities varying from 17 to 38 days. The virulence-associated genes of the surviving isolates remained unchanged, while their pulsotypes underwent slight variation. In particular, one waterway-isolated strain maintained virulence-associated genes and evolved to share the same pulsotype as patient strains, highlighting its role in the cholera outbreak. The strong survival capacity and molecular attributes of V. cholerae might account for its persistence in environmental waters and the long duration of the cholera outbreak, allowing effective control measures.