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Infectious diseases, such as Helicobacter pylori, which produce systemic inflammation may be one key factor in the onset of autoimmunity. The association between H. pylori and antinuclear antibodies (ANA), a marker of autoimmunity, has been understudied. Data from the 1999–2000 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey were used to evaluate the cross-sectional association between H. pylori seroprevalence and ANA positivity in US adults aged ≥20 years. ANA was measured in a 1:80 dilution of sera by indirect immunofluorescence using HEp-2 cells (positive ⩾3). H. pylori immunoglobulin G enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays were used to categorise individuals as seropositive or seronegative. H. pylori seropositivity and ANA positivity were common in the adult US population, with estimated prevalences of 33.3% and 9.9%, respectively. Both were associated with increasing age. H. pylori seropositivity was associated with higher odds of ANA (prevalence odds ratio = 1.89, 95% confidence interval = 1.08–3.33), adjusted for age, sex, race/ethnicity, educational attainment and body mass index. H. pylori infection may be one key factor in the loss of self-tolerance, contributing to immune dysfunction.
For decades, fructose intake has been recognised as an environmental risk for metabolic syndromes and diseases. Here we comprehensively examined the effects of fructose intake on mice liver transcriptomes. Fructose-supplemented water (34 %; w/v) was fed to both male and female C57BL/6N mice at their free will for 6 weeks, followed by hepatic transcriptomics analysis. Based on our criteria, differentially expressed genes (DEG) were selected and subjected to further computational analyses to predict key pathways and upstream regulator(s). Subsequently, predicted genes and pathways from the transcriptomics dataset were validated via quantitative RT-PCR analyses. As a result, we identified eighty-nine down-regulated and eighty-eight up-regulated mRNA in fructose-fed mice livers. These DEG were subjected to bioinformatics analysis tools in which DEG were mainly enriched in xenobiotic metabolic processes; further, in the Ingenuity Pathway Analysis software, it was suggested that the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) is an upstream regulator governing overall changes, while fructose suppresses the AhR signalling pathway. In our quantitative RT-PCR validation, we confirmed that fructose suppressed AhR signalling through modulating expressions of transcription factor (AhR nuclear translocator; Arnt) and upstream regulators (Ncor2, and Rb1). Altogether, we demonstrated that ad libitum fructose intake suppresses the canonical AhR signalling pathway in C57BL/6N mice liver. Based on our current observations, further studies are warranted, especially with regard to the effects of co-exposure to fructose on (1) other types of carcinogens and (2) inflammation-inducing agents (or even diets such as a high-fat diet), to find implications of fructose-induced AhR suppression.
The present study aimed to compare the anti-biofilm activities of four commonly available antiseptic eardrops against biofilms from methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and quinolone-resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa in vitro.
The anti-biofilm activities of 50 per cent Burow's solution, vinegar with water (1:1), 2 per cent acetic acid solution, and 4 per cent boric acid solution were evaluated using biofilm assays. Additionally, the anti-biofilm activities of the four antiseptic solutions against tympanostomy tube biofilms were compared using a scanning electron microscope.
The inhibition of biofilm formation from methicillin-resistant S aureus and quinolone-resistant P aeruginosa occurred after treatment with 4 per cent boric acid solution, 2 per cent acetic acid solution, and vinegar with water (1:1). However, 50 per cent Burow's solution did not exhibit effective anti-biofilm activity.
The results indicate that 4 per cent boric acid solution and vinegar with water (1:1) are potent inhibitors of biofilms from methicillin-resistant S aureus and quinolone-resistant P aeruginosa, and provide safe pH levels for avoiding ototoxicity.
Background:ATP8A2 mutations have only recently been associated with human disease. We present the clinical features from the largest cohort of patients with this disorder reported to date. Methods: An observational study of 9 unreported and 2 previously reported patients with biallelic ATP8A2 mutations was carried out at multiple centres. Results: The mean age of the cohort was 9.4 years old (range: 2.5-28 yrs). All patients demonstrated developmental delay, severe hypotonia and movement disorders: chorea/choreoathetosis (100%), dystonia (27%) or facial dyskinesia (18%). Hypotonia was apparent at birth (70%) or before 6 months old (100%). Optic atrophy was observed in 75% of patients who had a funduscopic examination. MRI of the brain was normal for most patients with a small proportion showing mild cortical atrophy (30%), delayed myelination (20%) and/or hypoplastic optic nerves (20%). Epilepsy was seen in two older patients. Conclusions:ATP8A2 gene mutations have emerged as a cause of a novel phenotype characterized by developmental delay, severe hypotonia and hyperkinetic movement disorders. Optic atrophy is common and may only become apparent in the first few years of life, necessitating repeat ophthalmologic evaluation. Early recognition of the cardinal features of this condition will facilitate diagnosis of this disorder.
We examined the cross-sectional relationship between environmental tobacco smoke exposure, continuous performance test (CPT) measures, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or learning disability symptoms in school-aged children.
In total, 989 children (526 boys, mean age 9.1 ± 0.7 years), recruited from five South Korean cities participated in this study. We used urine cotinine as a biomarker for environmental tobacco smoke exposure, and obtained the children's scores on a CPT. Parents completed the Korean versions of the ADHD Rating Scale – IV (ADHD-RS) and Learning Disability Evaluation Scale (LDES). Using generalized linear mixed model (GLMM), we assessed the associations between urine cotinine concentrations, neuropsychological variables, and symptoms of ADHD and learning disabilities. Additionally, we conducted structural equation models to explore the effects' pathways.
After adjusting for a range of relevant covariates, GLMM showed urinary cotinine levels were significantly and positively associated with CPT scores on omission errors, commission errors, response time, and response time variability, and with parent- and teacher-rated ADHD-RS scores. In addition, urine cotinine levels were negatively associated with LDES scores on spelling and mathematical calculations. The structural equation model revealed that CPT variables mediated the association between urine cotinine levels and parental reports of symptoms of ADHD and learning disabilities.
Our data indicate that environmental exposure to tobacco smoke is associated with ADHD and learning disabilities in children, and that impairments in attention and inhibitory control probably mediate the effect.
We describe the concept of a 3D self-folding package (SFP) for sensors and electronic devices. The strategy is based on a self-assembly strategy wherein 2D panels interconnected with hinges spontaneously fold-up when they are released from the substrate; self-folding can be triggered by temperature or selected chemicals. The strategy enables packaging of devices in porous polyhedral geometries that can either be untethered or substrate-bound. Self-folding can enable packaging of devices in small 3D form factors and may enable efficient cooling due to porosity. The utilization of this self-folding platform to enable 3D packaging of cantilever sensors and magnetic field sensitive strain gauges is summarized.
The impact of interfacial oxygen content on the band offsets of GaAs:HfO2 interfaces was investigated using the density functional theory (DFT) method. Reference potential method was used to determine the band offsets. Moreover, GW correction was utilized to find more accurate value of the valence band edge of HfO2 and hence obtain more accurate band offsets. With gradually decreasing the interfacial O content from 100% to 30% (by changing O chemical potential corresponding to varying the growth condition), the valence band offset increases from 1.06 to 3.34 eV. It is found that this increase of the valence band offsets is inversely proportional to the charge loss of interfacial Ga atoms. Specifically, less charge loss of interfacial Ga induces less charge transfer from GaAs to HfO2 side. Consequently, the less charge loss of interfacial Ga essentially leads to an increase of the valence band offsets.
Haemangiomas do not develop as commonly in the sinonasal cavity, compared with other head and neck sites. The clinical characteristics of sinonasal cavity haemangiomas and the results for endoscopic resection have been addressed in the literature only briefly. Thus, this study aimed to evaluate these points.
Materials and methods:
A retrospective chart review was undertaken of 22 patients who had undergone endoscopic excision of sinonasal cavity haemangiomas, in order to define clinical characteristics and tumour control rates.
Results and analysis:
The most common presenting symptom was epistaxis. The most prevalent site was the inferior turbinate (45.5 per cent), followed by the maxillary sinus (18.2 per cent). No recurrence was observed in any patient.
Although past studies have described external approach sinonasal surgery as the mainstay of treatment, our results imply that endoscopic excision of sinonasal haemangiomas yields excellent outcomes in terms of tumour control and safety.
We report the chemical synthesis of Fe-core/Au-shell nanoparticles (Fe/Au) by a reverse micelle method, and the investigation of their growth mechanisms and oxidation-resistant characteristics. The core-shell structure and the presence of the Fe and Au phases have been confirmed by transmission electron microscopy, energy dispersive spectroscopy, x-ray diffraction, Mössbauer spectroscopy, and inductively coupled plasma techniques. Additionally, atomic-resolution Z-contrast imaging and electron energy loss spectroscopy in a scanning transmission electron microscope have been used to study details of the growth processes. The Au-shells grow by nucleating on the Fe-core surfaces before coalescing. First-order reversal curves, along with the major hysteresis loops of the Fe/Au nanoparticles have been measured as a function of time in order to investigate the evolution of their magnetic properties. The magnetic moments of such nanoparticles, in the loose powder form, decrease over time due to oxidation. The less than ideal oxidation-resistance of the Au shell may have been caused by the rough Au surfaces. In a small fraction of the particles, off-centered Fe cores have been observed, which are more susceptible to oxidation. However, in the pressed pellet form, electrical transport measurements show that the particles are fairly stable, as the resistance and magnetoresistance of the pellet do not change appreciably over time. Our results demonstrate the complexity involved in the synthesis and properties of these heterostructured nanoparticles.
The composition of yeast communities in the rumen of cattle was investigated using comparative DNA sequence analysis of yeast 26S rDNA genes. 26S rDNA libraries were constructed from rumen fluid (FF), rumen solid (FS) and rumen epithelium (FE). A total of 97 clones, containing a partial 26S rDNA sequence of 0·6 kb length, were sequenced and subjected to an on-line similarity search.
The 41 FF clones could be divided into five classes. The largest class was affiliated with Pezizomycotina class (85·4% of clones), and the remaining classes were related with the Urediniomycotina (2·4%), Hymenomycetes (4·9%), Ustilaginomycetes (4·9%) and Saccharomycotina (2·4%) classes. The 26 FE clones could be divided into three classes and the Saccharomycetes class (92·4% of clones) was the largest group. The remaining classes were related with either Pezizomycotina (3·8%) or Ustilaginomycetes (3·8%). The 30 FS clones were all affiliated with Saccharomycotina. Saccharomycotina were predominant in rumen epithelium and rumen solid while Pezizomycotina were predominant in rumen fluid. Yeast belonging to the Saccharomycotina class was predominant in the rumen as a whole (57%). One clone (FF34) had less than 90% similarity to any sequence in the database and was thus apparently unrelated to any previously described yeast.
Optimization of GaN channel conductivity in AlGaN/GaN Heterojunction Field Effect Transistor (HFET) structures was performed using High Resistivity (HR) GaN templates grown by Metal-organic Vapor Phase Epitaxy (MOVPE). The GaN sheet resistance was tuned using final nucleation layer (NL) annealing temperature. Using an annealing temperature of 1033°C, GaN with sheet resistance of 10 Ω/sq was achieved, comparable to that of Fe-doped GaN. X-Ray Diffraction (XRD) and Photoluminescence (PL) analysis show that the high resistance GaN is achieved due to compensating acceptor levels introduced through edge-type threading dislocations. XRD analysis also shows optimization of annealing temperature provided a means to maximize GaN sheet resistance without significantly degrading material quality. AlGaN/GaN HFET layers grown using HR GaN templates gave surface and interface roughness of 14 and 7 Å, respectively. The 2DEG Hall mobility and sheet charge of HFETs grown using HR GaN templates was comparable to similar layers grown using unintentionally doped (UID) GaN templates.
Although silicon is known as a poor emitter of light, recent work has demonstrated silicon light emission efficiencies in the range normally associated with III-V semiconductors. The present paper explores the light emission efficiency potential of silicon as well as the scope for implementing silicon optical functions into high density integrated circuits.
SiGe/Si n-type modulation doped field effect structures and transistors (n-MODFETs) have been fabricated on r-plane sapphire substrates. The structures were deposited using molecular beam epitaxy, and antimony dopants were incorporated via a delta doping process. Secondary ion mass spectroscopy (SIMS) indicates that the peak antimony concentration was approximately 4×1019 cm−3. The electron mobility was over 1,200 and 13,000 cm2/V-sec at room temperature and 0.25 K, respectively. At these two temperatures, the electron carrier densities were 1.6 and 1.33×1012 cm−2, thus demonstrating that carrier confinement was excellent. Shubnikov-de Haas oscillations were observed at 0.25 K, thus confirming the two-dimensional nature of the carriers. Transistors, with gate lengths varying from 1 micron to 5 microns, were fabricated using these structures and dc characterization was performed at room temperature. The saturated drain current region extended over a wide source-to-drain voltage (VDS) range, with VDS knee voltages of approximately 0.5 V and increased leakage starting at voltages slightly higher than 4 V.
This paper discusses the techniques that are available for characterising circuit materials at microwave and millimetre wave frequencies. In particular, the paper focuses on a new technique for measuring the loss tangent of substrates at mm-wave frequencies using a circular resonant cavity. The benefits of the new technique are that it is simple, low cost, capable of good accuracy and has the potential to work at high mm-wave frequencies.
High-density MOS capacitors have been fabricated with ∼ 30 nF/mm2 specific capacitance on highly-doped Si-wafers with arrays of macropores with ∼ 2 μm diameter. Using the Bosch process  these pores were dry-etched to depths of ∼ 30 μm or more. The enlarged Si-surface thus obtained serves as a substrate for capacitors fabricated by fully MOS-compatible processing.
Wafers were fabricated with a top electrode of poly-Si and Al and ‘ONO’ (i.e. oxide / nitride / oxide) dielectric stacks showing 7–10 MV/cm electrical breakdown field and leakage < 1 nA/mm2 @ 20 V. These wafers were thinned to 380 μm and sawn into dies, representing 40 nF capacitors. Typically low loss factors such as ESR < 50 mΩ and ESL < 20 pH and resonance frequencies of ∼ 0.1 GHz were found for 40 nF capacitor dies. Next, 40 nF dies were mounted by wire bonding on Al2O3 or laminate substrate as supply-line decoupling capacitors in complete GSM power amplifier test modules. RF decoupling and transmission were measured and compared to identical test modules with conventional discrete ceramic capacitors. The MOS capacitors showed very efficient decoupling, resulting in superior signal stability as measured in the 0 – 1 GHz range (less noisy, free from oscillations).
The new capacitor is very suitable for integrated decoupling purposes, e.g. supply-line decoupling in RF wireless communication and analog and mixed-signal systems.
The research about the structural stability of bone, as a composite material, compromises a complete understanding of the interaction between the mineral and organic phases. The thermal stability of human bone and type I collagen extracted from human bone by different methods was studied in order to understand the interactions between the mineral and organic phases when is affected by a degradation/combustion process. The experimental techniques employed were calorimetry and infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) techniques. The extracted type I collagens result to have a bigger thermal stability with a Tmax at 500 and 530 Celsius degrees compared with the collagen present in bone with Tmax at 350 Celsius degrees. The enthalpy value for the complete degradation/combustion process were similar for all the samples, being 8.4 +- 0.11 kJ/g for recent bones diminishing with the antiquity, while for extracted collagens were 8.9 +- 0.07 and 7.9 +-1.01 kJ/g. These findings demonstrate that the stability loss of type I collagen is due to its interactions with the mineral phase, namely carbonate hydroxyapatite. This cause a change in the molecular properties of the collagen during mineralization, specifically in its cross-links and other chemical interactions, which have a global effect over the fibers elasticity, but gaining tensile strength in bone as a whole tissue. We are applying this characterization to analyze the diagenetic process of bones with archaeological interest in order to identify how the environmental factors affect the molecular structure of type I collagen. In bone samples that proceed from an specific region with the same environmental conditions, the enthalpy value per unit mass was found to diminish exponentially with respect to the bone antiquity.
We treat a class of functionals which satisfy the Cauchy–Schwarz inequality. This appears to be a natural unifying concept and subsumes inter alia isotonic linear functional and sublinear positive isotonic functionals. Striking superadditivity and monotonicity properties are derived.