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The sense of bitter taste is critical for chickens to acquire and select feeds. It is important to understand the roles and mechanisms of bitter taste transduction in chickens. Denatonium is extensively used as a bitter taste receptor agonist to activate bitter taste receptors in recent studies. The objective of this study was to investigate the physiological effects and the potential molecular mechanisms of dietary exposure to a strong bitter taste receptor agonist on the jejunal epithelial cells of yellow-feathered chickens. A total of 240 yellow-feathered chickens were divided into four treatments receiving a normal diet (Control), a low-dose denatonium treatment (Control + 5 mg/kg denatonium), a middle-dose denatonium treatment (Control + 20 mg/kg denatonium) and a high-dose denatonium treatment (Control + 100 mg/kg denatonium) for 56 days, respectively. The results showed that dietary denatonium reduced (P < 0.05) the growth performance of chickens. High-dose denatonium damaged the morphology of the jejunal epithelium and decreased (P < 0.05) the activities of Ca2+-ATPase, sucrase and maltase after 56 days of exposure. Meanwhile, high-dose denatonium increased (P < 0.05) mRNA expressions of bitter taste receptors, which resulted in enhanced apoptosis in jejunal epithelial cells after 56 days of exposure. Furthermore, middle-dose and high-dose denatonium exhibited increased (P < 0.05) mRNA level of claudin 2 and decreased (P < 0.05) mRNA level of occludin after 28 days of exposure. Only high-dose denatonium decreased (P < 0.05) mRNA level of occludin after 56 days of exposure. In conclusion, denatonium manifested deleterious effects on the jejunum of chickens in a dose–effect manner via damaging the morphology of the jejunal epithelium, and inducing apoptosis associated with bitter taste receptors. Our data suggest that bitter-tasting feed additives may have side effects on the growth and development of intestines in chickens.
In January of 2010, North Carolina (NC) USA implemented state-wide Trauma Triage Destination Plans (TTDPs) to provide standardized guidelines for Emergency Medical Services (EMS) decision making. No study exists to evaluate whether triage behavior has changed for geriatric trauma patients.
The impact of the NC TTDPs was investigated on EMS triage of geriatric trauma patients meeting physiologic criteria of serious injury, primarily based on whether these patients were transported to a trauma center.
This is a retrospective cohort study of geriatric trauma patients transported by EMS from March 1, 2009 through September 30, 2009 (pre-TTDP) and March 1, 2010 through September 30, 2010 (post-TTDP) meeting the following inclusion criteria: (1) age 50 years or older; (2) transported to a hospital by NC EMS; (3) experienced an injury; and (4) meeting one or more of the NC TTDP’s physiologic criteria for trauma (n = 5,345). Data were obtained from the Prehospital Medical Information System (PreMIS). Data collected included proportions of patients transported to a trauma center categorized by specific physiologic criteria, age category, and distance from a trauma center.
The proportion of patients transported to a trauma center pre-TTDP (24.4% [95% CI 22.7%-26.1%]; n = 604) was similar to the proportion post-TTDP (24.4% [95% CI 22.9%-26.0%]; n = 700). For patients meeting specific physiologic triage criteria, the proportions of patients transported to a trauma center were also similar pre- and post-TTDP: systolic blood pressure <90 mmHg (22.5% versus 23.5%); respiratory rate <10 or >29 (23.2% versus 22.6%); and Glascow Coma Scale (GCS) score <13 (26.0% versus 26.4%). Patients aged 80 years or older were less likely to be transported to a trauma center than younger patients in both the pre- and post-TTDP periods.
State-wide implementation of a TTDP had no discernible effect on the proportion of patients 50 years and older transported to a trauma center. Under-triage remained common and became increasingly prevalent among the oldest adults. Research to understand the uptake of guidelines and protocols into EMS practice is critical to improving care for older adults in the prehospital environment.
Objectives: Low educational attainment is a risk factor for more rapid cognitive aging, but there is substantial variability in cognitive trajectories within educational groups. The aim of this study was to determine the factors that confer resilience to memory decline within educational strata. Methods: We selected 2573 initially nondemented White, African American, and Hispanic participants from the longitudinal community-based Washington Heights/Inwood Columbia Aging Project who had at least two visits. We estimated initial memory (intercept) and the rate of memory decline (slope) using up to five occasions of measurement. We classified groups according to the educational attainment groups as low (≤5 years), medium (6–11 years), and high (≥12 years). We used a multiple-group latent growth model to identify the baseline predictors of initial memory performance and rate of memory decline across groups. The model specification considered the influence of demographic, socioeconomic, biomedical, and cognitive variables on the intercept and the slope of memory trajectory. Results: Our results indicated that the three educational groups do not benefit from the same factors. When allowed to differ across groups, the predictors were related to cognitive outcomes in the highly educated group, but we found no unique predictor of cognition for the low educated older adults. Conclusions: These findings highlight that memory-protective factors may differ across older adults with distinct educational backgrounds, and the need to evaluate a broader range of potential resilience factors for older adults with few years of school.
While assessing the environmental impact of nuclear power plants, researchers have focused their attention on radiocarbon (14C) owing to its high mobility in the environment and important radiological impact on human beings. The 10 MW high-temperature gas-cooled reactor (HTR-10) is the first pebble-bed gas-cooled test reactor in China that adopted helium as primary coolant and graphite spheres containing tristructural-isotropic (TRISO) coated particles as fuel elements. A series of experiments on the 14C source terms in HTR-10 was conducted: (1) measurement of the specific activity and distribution of typical nuclides in the irradiated graphite spheres from the core, (2) measurement of the activity concentration of 14C in the primary coolant, and (3) measurement of the amount of 14C discharged in the effluent from the stack. All experimental data on 14C available for HTR-10 were summarized and analyzed using theoretical calculations. A sensitivity study on the total porosity, open porosity, and percentage of closed pores that became open after irradiating the matrix graphite was performed to illustrate their effects on the activity concentration of 14C in the primary coolant and activity amount of 14C in various deduction routes.
The very high temperature reactor (VHTR) is a development of the high-temperature gas-cooled reactors (HTGRs) and one of the six proposed Generation IV reactor concept candidates. The 10 MW high temperature gas-cooled reactor (HTR-10) is the first pebble-bed gas-cooled test reactor in China. A sampling system for the measurement of carbon-14 (14C) was established in the helium purification system of the HTR-10 primary loop, which could sample 14C from the coolant at three locations. The results showed that activity concentration of 14C in the HTR-10 primary coolant was 1.2(1) × 102 Bq/m3 (STP). The production mechanisms, distribution characteristics, reduction routes, and release types of 14C in HTR-10 were analyzed and discussed. A theoretical model was built to calculate the amount of 14C in the core of HTR-10 and its concentration in the primary coolant. The activation reaction of 13C has been identified to be the dominant 14C source in the core, whereas in the primary coolant, it is the activation of 14N. These results can supplement important information for the source term analysis of 14C in HTR-10 and promote the study of 14C in HTGRs.
The progenitors of many core-collapse supernovae (CCSNe) are expected to be in binary systems. By performing a series of three-dimensional hydrodynamical simulations, we investigate how CCSN explosions affect their binary companion. We find that the amount of removed stellar mass, the resulting impact velocity, and the chemical contamination of the companion that results from the impact of the SN ejecta, strongly increases with decreasing binary separation and increasing explosion energy. Also, it is foud that the impact effects of CCSN ejecta on the structure of main-sequence (MS) companions, and thus their long term post-explosion evolution, are in general not dramatic.
Assertive Community Treatment (ACT) is an evidence-based treatment program for people with severe mental illness developed in high-income countries. We report the first randomized controlled trial of ACT in mainland China.
Sixty outpatients with schizophrenia with severe functional impairments or frequent hospitalizations were randomly assigned to ACT (n = 30) or standard community treatment (n = 30). The severity of symptoms and level of social functioning were assessed at baseline and every 3 months during the 1-year study. The primary outcome was the duration of hospital readmission. Secondary outcomes included a pre-post change in symptom severity, the rates of symptom relapse and gainful employment, social and occupational functioning, and quality of life of family caregivers.
Based on a modified intention-to-treat analysis, the outcomes for ACT were significantly better than those of standard community treatment. ACT patients were less likely to be readmitted [3.3% (1/30) v. 25.0% (7/28), Fisher's exact test p = 0.023], had a shorter mean readmission time [2.4 (13.3) v. 30.7 (66.9) days], were less likely to relapse [6.7% (2/30) v. 28.6% (8/28), Fisher's exact test p = 0.038], and had shorter mean time in relapse [3.5 (14.6) v. 34.4 (70.6) days]. The ACT group also had significantly longer times re-employed and greater symptomatic improvement and their caregivers experienced a greater improvement in their quality of life.
Our results show that culturally adapted ACT is both feasible and effective for individuals with severe schizophrenia in urban China. Replication studies with larger samples and longer duration of follow up are warranted.
Projected changes to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) diagnostic criteria in the upcoming International Classification of Diseases (ICD)-11 may affect the prevalence and severity of identified cases. This study examined differences in rates, severity, and overlap of diagnoses using ICD-10 and ICD-11 PTSD diagnostic criteria during consecutive assessments of recent survivors of traumatic events.
The study sample comprised 3863 survivors of traumatic events, evaluated in 11 longitudinal studies of PTSD. ICD-10 and ICD-11 diagnostic rules were applied to the Clinician-Administered PTSD Scale (CAPS) to derive ICD-10 and ICD-11 diagnoses at different time intervals between trauma occurrence and 15 months.
The ICD-11 criteria identified fewer cases than the ICD-10 across assessment intervals (range −47.09% to −57.14%). Over 97% of ICD-11 PTSD cases met concurrent ICD-10 PTSD criteria. PTSD symptom severity of individuals identified by the ICD-11 criteria (CAPS total scores) was 31.38–36.49% higher than those identified by ICD-10 criteria alone. The latter, however, had CAPS scores indicative of moderate PTSD. ICD-11 was associated with similar or higher rates of comorbid mood and anxiety disorders. Individuals identified by either ICD-10 or ICD-11 shortly after traumatic events had similar longitudinal course.
This study indicates that significantly fewer individuals would be diagnosed with PTSD using the proposed ICD-11 criteria. Though ICD-11 criteria identify more severe cases, those meeting ICD-10 but not ICD-11 criteria remain in the moderate range of PTSD symptoms. Use of ICD-11 criteria will have critical implications for case identification in clinical practice, national reporting, and research.
Low-density, highly porous graphene/graphene oxide (GO) based-foams have shown high performance in energy absorption applications, even under high compressive deformations. In general, foams are very effective as energy dissipative materials and have been widely used in many areas such as automotive, aerospace and biomedical industries. In the case of graphene-based foams, the good mechanical properties are mainly attributed to the intrinsic graphene and/or GO electronic and mechanical properties. Despite the attractive physical properties of graphene/GO based-foams, their structural and thermal stabilities are still a problem for some applications. For instance, they are easily degraded when placed in flowing solutions, either by the collapsing of their layers or just by structural disintegration into small pieces. Recently, a new and scalable synthetic approach to produce low-density 3D macroscopic GO structure interconnected with polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) polymeric chains (pGO) was proposed. A controlled amount of PDMS is infused into the freeze-dried foam resulting into a very rigid structure with improved mechanical properties, such as tensile plasticity and toughness. The PDMS wets the graphene oxide sheets and acts like a glue bonding PDMS and GO sheets. In order to obtain further insights on mechanisms behind the enhanced mechanical pGO response we carried out fully atomistic molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. Based on MD results, we build up a structural model that can explain the experimentally observed mechanical behavior.
With the consideration of the flexoelectric effect, the dispersion feature of plane waves propagating in infinite piezoelectric medium and the reflection amplitude ratio at a mechanically traction-free and dielectrically charge-free surface of semi-infinite piezoelectric half-space are studied in this paper. The flexoelectric effect is essentially the microstructure effect of heterogeneous piezoelectric medium. Besides, the strain gradient effect and the micro-inertial effect are also introduced to reflect the influences of the microstructure. Different from the classical piezoelectric medium, there are five kinds of coupled elastic waves in the microstructured piezoelectric medium. The influences of the flexoelectric effect, the strain gradient effect and the micro-inertial effect upon the dispersion feature of the coupled elastic waves and the reflection amplitude ratio are studied numerically. The numerical results are shown graphically and are validated by the energy conservation law. It is found that these microstructure effects have obvious influences upon the dispersion feature of the coupled elastic waves and therefore also affect the reflection energy partition at the mechanically free surface. Especially, the micro-inertial effect has fundamental influences on the dispersion properties of the coupled elastic waves.
The CMP challenges for advanced technology nodes are discussed. Global and local uniformity challenges and their cumulative effects are presented. Uniformity improvements for advanced node integration were achieved through slurry, pad and platen optimization, innovative integration schemes, the reduction of incoming variation and the reduction of cumulative effects. We discuss reduction of typical CMP defect types. Defects resulting from simple mechanisms (foreign material, polish residues) and those resulting from chemical and physical interactions (corrosion, chemical attack, scratches, physical migration) and strategies for control are studied. Defectivity reduction measures include new post-CMP clean chemicals, new slurries and pads and reduction of incoming defectivity. Finally we discuss an observed tradeoff between good defectivity and good uniformity.
To examine the incidence of asthma in adult patients with major depressive disorder (MDD).
From the National Health Insurance database of Taiwan, we identified 30 169 adult patients who were newly diagnosed with MDD between 2000 and 2010. Individuals without depression were randomly selected four times and frequency matched for sex, age and year of diagnosis. Both cohorts were followed-up for the occurrence of asthma up to the end of 2011. Adjusted hazard ratios (aHRs) of asthma were estimated using the Cox proportional hazards method.
The overall incidence of asthma was 1.91-fold higher in the MDD cohort than in the non-depression cohort (7.55 v. 3.96 per 1000 person-years), with an aHR of 1.66 (95% confidence interval (CI) 1.55–1.78). In both cohorts, the incidence of asthma was higher in patients and controls who were female, aged, with comorbidities and users of aspirin or beta-adrenergic receptor blockers. No significant difference was observed in the occurrence of asthma between patients with MDD treated with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and those treated with non-SSRIs (SSRIs to non-SSRIs aHR = 1.03, 95% CI 0.91–1.17).
Adult patients with MDD are at a higher risk of asthma than those without depression are.
Toxocariasis is a very prevalent zoonotic disease worldwide. Recently, investigators have focused more on Toxocara spp. seroprevalence in humans. Information regarding Toxocara seroprevalence in people from different ethnic backgrounds in China is limited. For this study, blood samples were collected from a total of 802 Han, 520 Korean, 303 Manchu, and 217 Mongol subjects from Jilin and Shandong provinces. The overall Toxocara seroprevalence was 16·07% (14·21% Han, 20·58% Korean, 11·22% Manchu, 18·89% Mongol). Living in suburban or rural areas, having dogs at home, exposure to soil, and consumption of raw/undercooked meat were risk factors for Toxocara infection. Exposure to soil was identified as the major risk factor for Toxocara seropositivity in all of the tested ethnicities. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report concerning Toxocara infection in Manchus and Mongols in China. The present study provided baseline data for effective prevention strategies of toxocariasis in northeast China and recommends improvements in personal hygiene standards to achieve this goal.
Although acknowledged to be variable and subjective, manual annotation of cryo-electron tomography data is commonly used to answer structural questions and to create a “ground truth” for evaluation of automated segmentation algorithms. Validation of such annotation is lacking, but is critical for understanding the reproducibility of manual annotations. Here, we used voxel-based similarity scores for a variety of specimens, ranging in complexity and segmented by several annotators, to quantify the variation among their annotations. In addition, we have identified procedures for merging annotations to reduce variability, thereby increasing the reliability of manual annotation. Based on our analyses, we find that it is necessary to combine multiple manual annotations to increase the confidence level for answering structural questions. We also make recommendations to guide algorithm development for automated annotation of features of interest.
Phosphatidylinositol-3 kinases (PI3K)-Protein kinase B (Akt)-mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) pathway plays an important role in the synthesis and secretion of triacylglycerol. However, the mechanism of PI3K-Akt-mTOR pathway in regulating lipid metabolism of goose liver was poorly understood. The purpose of this study was to determine how PI3K-Akt-mTOR pathway regulating lipid metabolic homeostasis in goose hepatocytes. Goose primary hepatocytes were treated with different PI3K-Akt-mTOR signal inhibitors (LY294002, rapamycin and NVP-BEZ235) for 24 h. The results showed that these inhibitors evidently inhibited PI3K-Akt-mTOR downstream signaling. Meanwhile, these PI3K-Akt-mTOR inhibitors reduced intracellular lipid accumulation, decreased the mRNA expression and protein content of genes involved in the de novo fatty acid synthesis, while increased the transcriptional and protein level of key factors involved in fatty acid oxidation and very low density lipoprotein (VLDL) assembly and secretion. Conclusion: These findings suggested that the reduction of lipids accumulation induced-by inhibiting PI3K-Akt-mTOR pathway was closely linked to the decrease of lipogenesis, the increase of fatty acids oxidation, and the increase of VLDL assembly and secretion in goose hepatocytes.
A cross-sectional study was conducted from June 2013 to August 2015 to determine the seroprevalence and possible risk factors for human Toxoplasma gondii infection in Korean, Manchu, Mongol and Han ethnic groups in eastern and northeastern China. A total of 1842 serum samples, including Han (n = 802), Korean (n = 520), Manchu (n = 303) and Mongol (n = 217) groups, were analysed using enzyme-linked immunoassays to detect IgG and IgM T. gondii antibodies. The overall T. gondii IgG and IgM seroprevalences were 13·79% and 1·25%, respectively. Of these groups, Mongol ethnicity had the highest T. gondii seroprevalence (20·74%, 45/217), followed by Korean ethnicity (16·54%, 86/520), Manchu ethnicity (13·86%, 42/303) and Han ethnicity (11·35%, 98/802). Multiple analysis showed that the consumption of raw vegetables and fruits, the consumption of raw/undercooked meat and the source of drinking water were significantly associated with T. gondii infection in the Han group. Likewise, having a cat at home was identified as being associated with T. gondii infection in the Korean, Manchu and Mongol groups. Moreover, the consumption of raw/undercooked meat was identified as another predictor of T. gondii seropositivity in the Mongol group. The results of this survey indicate that T. gondii infection is prevalent in Korean, Manchu, Mongol and Han ethnic groups in the study region. Therefore, it is essential to implement integrated strategies with efficient management measures to prevent and control T. gondii infection in this region of China. Moreover, this is the first report of T. gondii infection in Korean, Manchu, and Mongol ethnic groups in eastern and northeastern China.
Among several potential animal models that can be used for adipogenic studies, Wagyu cattle is the one that presents unique molecular mechanisms underlying the deposit of substantial amounts of intramuscular fat. As such, this review is focused on current knowledge of such mechanisms related to adipose tissue deposition using Wagyu cattle as model. So abundant is the lipid accumulation in the skeletal muscles of these animals that in many cases, the muscle cross-sectional area appears more white (adipose tissue) than red (muscle fibers). This enhanced marbling accumulation is morphologically similar to that seen in numerous skeletal muscle dysfunctions, disease states and myopathies; this might indicate cross-similar mechanisms between such dysfunctions and fat deposition in Wagyu breed. Animal models can be used not only for a better understanding of fat deposition in livestock, but also as models to an increased comprehension on molecular mechanisms behind human conditions. This revision underlies some of the complex molecular processes of fat deposition in animals.