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Staphylococcus aureus has been recognised as one of the important zoonotic pathogens. However, knowledge about the epidemiology and genetic characteristics of S. aureus in rabbits was limited. The aim of this study was to determine the characteristics of 281 S. aureus isolated from dead rabbits of nine rabbit farms in Fujian Province, China. All the isolates were characterised by multi-locus sequencing typing, detection of virulence factors and antimicrobial susceptibility test. The results showed that the 281 isolates were grouped into two sequence types, ST121 (13.52%, 38/281) and ST398 (86.48%, 243/281). Surprisingly, the ST121 strains were only recovered from the lung samples from one of the nine rabbit farms studied. In the 281 isolates, the virulence genes of nuc, hla, hlb, clfA, clfB and fnbpA were positive, whereas the sea, seb, tsst, eta and etb genes were negative. Notably, the 38 ST121 isolates carried the pvl gene. All the 281 isolates were methicillin-susceptible S. aureus, and the isolates were susceptible to most of the used antibiotics, except for streptomycin, kanamycin, azithromycin and penicillin, and the resistance rates of which were 23.84%, 19.57%, 16.01% and 11.03%, respectively. This study first described the epidemiology and characteristics of S. aureus in rabbits in Fujian Province, which will help in tracking the evolution of epidemic strains and preventing the rabbit–human transmission events.
To explore whether and how group cognitive-behavioural therapy (GCBT) plus medication differs from medication alone for the treatment of generalised anxiety disorder (GAD).
Hundred and seventy patients were randomly assigned to the GCBT plus duloxetine (n=89) or duloxetine group (n=81). The primary outcomes were Hamilton Anxiety Scale (HAMA) response and remission rates. The explorative secondary measures included score reductions from baseline in the HAMA total, psychic, and somatic anxiety subscales (HAMA-PA, HAMA-SA), the Hamilton Depression Scale, the Severity Subscale of Clinical Global Impression Scale, Global Assessment of Functioning, and the 12-item Short-Form Health Survey. Assessments were conducted at baseline, 4-week, 8-week, and 3-month follow-up.
At 4 weeks, HAMA response (GCBT group 57.0% vs. control group 24.4%, p=0.000, Cohen’s d=0.90) and remission rates (GCBT group 21.5% vs. control group 6.2%, p=0.004; d=0.51), and most secondary outcomes (all p<0.05, d=0.36−0.77) showed that the combined therapy was superior. At 8 weeks, all the primary and secondary significant differences found at 4 weeks were maintained with smaller effect sizes (p<0.05, d=0.32−0.48). At 3-month follow-up, the combined therapy was only significantly superior in the HAMA total (p<0.045, d=0.43) and HAMA-PA score reductions (p<0.001, d=0.77). Logistic regression showed superiority of the combined therapy for HAMA response rates [odds ratio (OR)=2.12, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.02−4.42, p=0.04] and remission rates (OR=2.80, 95% CI 1.27−6.16, p=0.01).
Compared with duloxetine alone, GCBT plus duloxetine showed significant treatment response for GAD over a shorter period of time, particularly for psychic anxiety symptoms, which may suggest that GCBT was effective in changing cognitive style.
In order to solve joint-angle drift problem of dual redundant manipulators at acceleration-level, an acceleration-level tri-criteria optimization motion planning (ALTC-OMP) scheme is proposed, which combines the minimum acceleration norm, repetitive motion planning, and infinity-norm acceleration minimization solutions via weighting factor. This scheme can resolve the joint-angle drift problem of dual redundant manipulators which will arise in single criteria or bi-criteria scheme. In addition, the proposed scheme considers joint-velocity joint-acceleration physical limits. The proposed scheme can not only guarantee joint-velocity and joint-acceleration within their physical limits, but also ensure that final joint-velocity and joint-acceleration are near to zero. This scheme is realized by dual redundant manipulators which consist of left and right manipulators. In order to ensure the coordinated operation of manipulators, two motion planning problems are reformulated as two general quadratic program (QP) problems and further unified into one standard QP problem, which is solved by a simplified linear-variational-inequalities-based primal-dual neural network at the acceleration-level. Computer-simulation results based on dual PUMA560 redundant manipulators further demonstrate the effectiveness and feasibility of the proposed ALTC-OMP scheme to resolve joint-angle drift problem arising in the dual redundant manipulators.
Alzheimer’s Disease (AD), characterized by deficits in memory and cognition and by behavioral impairment, is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder that influences more than 47 million people worldwide. Currently, no available drug is able to stop AD progression. Therefore, novel therapeutic strategies need to be investigated.
We analyzed the RNA sequencing data (RNA-seq) derived from the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO) database to identify the differentially expressed mRNAs in AD. The AD mouse model Tg2576 was used to verify the effects of IGF-2. The Morris Water Maze was administered to test the role of IGF-2 in memory consolidation. In addition, we quantified cell apoptosis by the TUNEL assay. The levels of amyloid plaques and the levels of Aβ40 and Aβ42 in the hippocampus were also determined by immunohistochemistry and ELISA, respectively.
RNA-seq analysis revealed that IGF-2 was remarkably reduced in AD. The expression of the upstream genes PI3K and AKT and the downstream gene CREB in the PI3K signaling pathway was significantly increased in the hippocampus of Tg2576 mice cells treated with IGF-2. The Morris water maze test showed that IGF-2 improved memory consolidation in Tg2576 mice. The activity of caspase-3 was decreased in Tg2576 mice treated with IGF-2. Amyloid plaques in the hippocampus were reduced, and the levels of Aβ40 and Aβ42 were decreased. The above effects of IGF-2 on AD were blocked when the PI3K signaling pathway inhibitor wortmannin was added.
IGF-2 attenuates memory decline, oxidative stress, cell apoptosis and amyloid plaques in the AD mouse model Tg2576 by activating the PI3K/AKT/CREB signaling pathway.
Dongxiang common wild rice (Oryza rufipogon Griff., DXWR) is an important genetic resource for the improvement of cultivated rice. For the past three decades, great achievements have been made in the field of molecular marker development. Although structural variations (SVs) had been studied between DXWR and Nipponbare (Oryza sativa L. ssp. japonica), the development and application of SV markers in DXWR has not been reported. In this study, based on the genome-wide SV loci, we developed and synthesized a total of 195 SV markers that were evenly distributed across the 12 rice chromosomes. Then, these markers were tested for their stabilities and polymorphisms. Of these 195 markers, 147 (75.4%) were successfully amplified and displayed abundant polymorphisms between DXWR and Nipponbare. Meanwhile, through the genotyping of 20 rice varieties from 13 countries and areas, we concluded that these SV markers have a wide application prospect in the analysis of cultivated rice. Therefore, these molecular markers greatly enrich the number of markers available for DXWR, which will facilitate genomic research and molecular breeding for this important and endangered germplasm resource.
Magnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (MIONPs) are particularly attractive in biosensor, antibacterial activity, targeted drug delivery, cell separation, magnetic resonance imaging tumor magnetic hyperthermia, and so on because of their particular properties including superparamagnetic behavior, low toxicity, biocompatibility, etc. Although many methods had been developed to produce MIONPs, some challenges such as severe agglomeration, serious oxidation, and irregular size are still faced in the synthesis of MIONPs. Thus, various strategies had been developed for the surface modification of MIONPs to improve the characteristics of them and obtain multifunctional MIONPs, which will widen the applicational scopes of them. Therefore, the processes, mechanisms, advances, advantages, and disadvantages of six main approaches for the synthesis of MIONPs; surface modification of MIONPs with inorganic materials, organic molecules, and polymer molecules; applications of MIONPs or modified MIONPs; the technical challenges of synthesizing MIONPs; and their limitations in biomedical applications were described in this review to provide the theoretical and technological guidance for their future applications.
Cascades of temperature and entropy fluctuations are studied by numerical simulations of stationary three-dimensional compressible turbulence with a heat source. The fluctuation spectra of velocity, compressible velocity component, density and pressure exhibit the
scaling in an inertial range. The strong acoustic equilibrium relation between spectra of the compressible velocity component and pressure is observed. The
scaling behaviour is also identified for the fluctuation spectra of temperature and entropy, with the Obukhov–Corrsin constants close to that of a passive scalar spectrum. It is shown by Kovasznay decomposition that the dynamics of the temperature field is dominated by the entropic mode. The average subgrid-scale (SGS) fluxes of temperature and entropy normalized by the total dissipation rates are close to 1 in the inertial range. The cascade of temperature is dominated by the compressible mode of the velocity field, indicating that the theory of a passive scalar in incompressible turbulence is not suitable to describe the inter-scale transfer of temperature in compressible turbulence. In contrast, the cascade of entropy is dominated by the solenoidal mode of the velocity field. The different behaviours of cascades of temperature and entropy are partly explained by the geometrical properties of SGS fluxes. Moreover, the different effects of local compressibility on the SGS fluxes of temperature and entropy are investigated by conditional averaging with respect to the filtered dilatation, demonstrating that the effect of compressibility on the cascade of temperature is much stronger than on the cascade of entropy.
Imaging studies have shown that the subcallosal region (SCR) volume was decreased in patients with major depressive disorder (MDD). However, whether the volumetric reductions in the SCR are due to thinning of the cortex or a loss of surface area (SA) remains unclear. In addition, the relationship between cortical measurements of the SCR and age through the adult life span in MDD remains unclear.
We used a cross-sectional design from 114 individuals with MDD and 112 matched healthy control (HC) individuals across the adult life span (range: 18–74 years). The mean cortical volume (CV), SA and cortical thickness (CT) of the SCR were computed using cortical parcellation based on FreeSurfer software. Multivariate analyses of covariance models were performed to compare differences between the MDD and HC groups on cortical measurements of the SCR. Multiple linear regression models were used to test age-by-group interaction effects on these cortical measurements of the SCR.
The MDD had significant reductions in the CV and SA of the left SCR compared with HC individuals after controlling of other variables. The left SCR CV and SA reductions compared with matched controls were observed only in early adulthood patients. We also found a significant age-related CT reduction in the SCR both in the MDD and HC participants.
The SCR volume reduction was mainly driven by SA in MDD. The different trajectories between the CT and SA of the SCR with age may provide valuable information to distinguish pathological processes and normal ageing in MDD.
Camellia oleifera is an important woody plant producing healthy edible oils. People need a large number of molecular markers, especially microsatellite, in breeding of C. oleifera. In this study, we sequenced the root transcriptomes of C. oleifera, and then designed a novel set of microsatellite markers based on the root-expressed genes. We assembled a total of 57,121 unigenes with a length of 42.63 Mb, which harboured 15,902 microsatellites. Among these microsatellites, di-nucleotide repeat motifs were the most abundant group (56.45%), then followed by tri- (25.20%), mono- (12.12%), hexa- (3.21%), penta- (2.18%) and quad-nucleotide ones (0.84%). In total, 6738 primer pairs were designed successfully to amplify the microsatellite loci. To test these microsatellite markers, 48 primer pairs were randomly selected and synthesized and validated in C. oleifera and its eight relatives. Up to 75% of the primer pairs amplified in C. oleifera and its relatives, and 62.5% displayed polymorphism. The transferability and diverse alleles across its eight relatives were detected for each polymorphic primer pair. The novel set of microsatellites derived from the root transcriptomes here provided a useful resource for future molecular genetics improvement of C. oleifera and its relatives.
To improve detection performance of passive location system based on troposcatter, we propose a blind signal detection algorithm. According to our algorithm, complementary ensemble empirical mode decomposition decomposes the received signal into several intrinsic mode functions (IMFs). To reconstruct the signal and background noises, difference between the entropy of adjacent IMFs is utilized as a standard. Different IMFs are utilized to estimate threshold of energy detection algorithm and energy level of received signal. Simulation examples indicate that the proposed algorithm can blindly and effectively detect the signal.
Several epidemiological studies have investigated that Na or K intakes might be associated with the metabolic syndrome (MetS). However, little evidence has evaluated the association between Na:K ratio and the MetS. In this study, we assessed the association between the dietary Na:K ratio and the MetS. The cross-sectional study was conducted among adults aged 18 years and older in Nanjing, using a multi-stage random sampling method, which resulted in a sample size of 1993 participants. Dietary Na and K intakes were assessed by 3 consecutive days of dietary recollection combined with condiments weighing method. Health-related data were obtained by standardised questionnaires, as well as physical examinations and laboratory assessments. The prevalence rate of the MetS was 36·5 % (728/1993). After adjusting for various lifestyle and dietary factors of the MetS, participants in the highest quartile of dietary Na:K ratio were at a higher risk of developing MetS (OR=1·602; 95 % CI 1·090, 2·353) compared with those in the lowest quartile. Each 1-sd increase in dietary Na:K ratio was associated with a higher risk of prevalent MetS (OR=1·166; 95 % CI: 1·018, 1·336). Among the components of the MetS, dietary Na:K ratio was positively associated with high blood pressure (quartile 3 v. quartile 1: OR=1·656; 95 % CI 1·228, 2·256) and hypertriacylglycerolaemia (quartile 4 v. quartile1: OR=1·305; 95 % CI 1·029, 1·655) in multivariate analysis. These results revealed that higher dietary Na:K ratio significantly increased the risk of the MetS in Chinese adults. Further studies are needed to verify this association.
Are firms more resilient to systemic banking crises in economies with higher levels of social trust? Using firm-level data in 34 countries from 1990 through 2011, we find that liquidity-dependent firms in high-trust countries obtain more trade credit and suffer smaller drops in profits and employment during banking crises than similar firms in low-trust economies. The results are consistent with the view that when banking crises block the normal bank-lending channel, greater social trust facilitates access to informal finance, cushioning the effects of these crises on corporate profits and employment.
Uniformly dispersed ultra-small hollow Co9S8 nanoparticles (<10 nm) (H-Co9S8@C) and solid Co9S8 nanoparticles (S-Co9S8@C) in porous carbon were fabricated separately by solvothermal and sulfur powder sulphurisation using Co-MOF-74 as the template. Owing to significant structural stability and uniform hollow structure of carbon-encapsulated Co9S8, the as-prepared H-Co9S8@C exhibited excellent lithium ion storage performance as an anode material. Worked in the voltage of 0.01–3.0 V, H-Co9S8@C revealed outstanding rate capability (850, 670, 613, 552, 457, and 347 mA h/g at 0.1, 0.2, 0.5, 1, 2, and 3 A/g, respectively), and high reversible capacity (after 250 cycles with a remained capacity of 900.5 mA h/g). Compared with S-Co9S8@C, over 50 cycles, the discharge specific capacity of H-Co9S8@C was still maintained at 655 mA h/g at a current density of 0.5 A/g, whereas the capacity of S-Co9S8@C declined rapidly to 160.4 mA h/g. The results showed that superior capacity, excellent rate performance, and highly stable cycle performance depended mainly on the hollow characteristic of Co9S8.
Four complete platysiagid fish specimens are described from the Luoping Biota, Anisian (Middle Triassic), Yunnan Province, southwest China. They are small fishes with bones and scales covered with ganoine. All characters observed, such as nasals meeting in the midline, a keystone-like dermosphenotic, absence of post-rostral bone, two infraorbitals between dermosphenotic and jugal, large antorbital, and two postcleithra, suggest that the new materials belong to a single, new Platysiagum species, P. sinensis sp. nov. Three genera are ascribed to Platysiagidae: Platysiagum, Helmolepis and Caelatichthys. However, most specimens of the first two genera are imprints or fragmentary. The new, well-preserved specimens from the Luoping Biota provide more detailed anatomical information than before, and thus help amend the concept of the Platysiagidae. The Family Platysiagidae was previously classed in the Perleidiformes. Phylogenetic analysis indicates that the Platysiagidae is a member of basal Neopterygii, and its origin seems to predate that of Perleidiformes. Moreover, platysiagid fishes are known from the Middle Triassic of the western Tethys region. The newly found specimens of platysiagids from Luoping provide additional evidence that both eastern and western sides of the Tethys Ocean were biogeographically more connected than previously thought.
The grain-size distribution (GSD) of sediments provides information on sediment provenance, transport processes, and the sedimentary environment. Although a wide range of statistical parameters have been applied to summarize GSDs, most are directed at only parts of the distribution, which limits the amount of environmental information that can be retrieved. Endmember modeling provides a flexible method for unmixing GSDs; however, the calculation of the exact number of endmembers and geologically meaningful endmember spectra remain unresolved using existing modeling methods. Here we present the methodology hierarchical clustering endmember modeling analysis (CEMMA) for unmixing the GSDs of sediments. Within the CEMMA framework, the number of endmembers can be inferred from agglomeration coefficients, and the grain-size spectra of endmembers are defined on the basis of the average distance between the samples in the clusters. After objectively defining grain-size endmembers, we use a least squares algorithm to calculate the fractions of each GSD endmember that contributes to individual samples. To test the CEMMA method, we use a grain-size data set from a sediment core from Wulungu Lake in the Junggar Basin in China, and find that application of the CEMMA methodology yields geologically and mathematically meaningful results. We conclude that CEMMA is a rapid and flexible approach for analyzing the GSDs of sediments.
Flow records of meltwater runoff provide information about the movement of water through the ice and about glacial ablation. This study indicates that the lag time required for a maximum correlation between daily discharge and air temperature, and the sensitivity of meltwater response to air temperature, changes during the ablation period for different proportions of the base flow. To examine how glaciers respond to climatic changes and the hydrological characteristics of the large glaciers in the Tuomuer mountain area, western China, observations have been undertaken in this region since June 2003. By means of correlation and cross-spectral analysis, the relationship between air temperature and meltwater runoff in different months of the ablation period (May–September) on Keqikaer glacier in 2004 has been evaluated. Data have been selected from the 1st to the 30th for every month, and the calculated hourly discharges of the meltwater runoff for each day were utilized. From these data we conclude that for Keqikaer glacier the meltwater runoff has a greater sensitivity to air temperature in May, July and August than in June and September; however, the lag time is shorter in June, July and August than it is in May and September.
This study aimed to evaluate the effect of different starch types on liver nutrient metabolism of finishing pigs. In all ninety barrows were randomly allocated to three diets with five replicates of six pigs, containing purified waxy maize starch (WMS), non-waxy maize starch (NMS) and pea starch (PS) (the amylose to amylopectin ratios were 0·07, 0·19 and 0·28, respectively). After 28 d of treatments, two per pen (close to the average body weight of the pen) were weighed individually, slaughtered and liver samples were collected. Compared with the WMS diet, the PS diet decreased the activities of glycogen phosphorylase, phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase and the expression of phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase 1 in liver (P<0·05). Moreover, the lipid contents, the concentrations of acetyl-CoA carboxylase, fatty acid synthetase and the expression of sterol regulatory element binding protein-1c in liver of PS and NMS diets were lower than those of WMS diet (P<0·05). However, no effect was observed in the activity of hepatic lipase, the expressions of carbohydrate-responsive element-binding protein, liver X receptor and PPARα (P>0·05). Compared with the WMS diet, the PS diet reduced the expressions of glutamate dehydrogenase and carbamoyl phosphate synthetase 1 in liver (P<0·05). PS diet decreased the expression of the insulin receptor, and increased the expressions of mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 and ribosomal protein S6 kinase β-1 in liver compared with the WMS diet (P<0·05). These findings indicated that the diet with higher amylose content could down-regulate gluconeogenesis, and cause less fat deposition and more protein deposition by affecting the insulin/PI3K/protein kinase B signalling pathway in liver of finishing pigs.
This work designed a facile preparation for an SiO2/C composite as the anode material for lithium ion battery. Both SiO2 and carbon are amorphous. SiO2 and carbon are mixed uniformly. The SiO2/C composite shows high specific capacity, cycle stability, and rate capability in lithium ion battery charge–discharge test. A stable reversible capacity of 1024 mA h/g at the current density of 100 mA/g is reached. The capacity retains 83% after 100 cycles. The uniform mixture of SiO2 and carbon leads to reduced volume change during the lithiation and delithiation of SiO2, together with the amorphous nature of SiO2 explains the high cycling stability. The carbon coating is a key factor for the high capacity and stability due to the increased electrical conductivity and reduced volume change. The resistance of the solid electrolyte interface film and charge transfer resistance of the SiO2/C composite are much smaller than those of pure carbon, which is a direct proof of the improved conductivity of the material by the carbon coating.