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Mental disorders, including depression, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), and schizophrenia, share a common neuropathy of disturbed large-scale coordinated brain maturation. However, high-interindividual heterogeneity hinders the identification of shared and distinct patterns of brain network abnormalities across mental disorders. This study aimed to identify shared and distinct patterns of altered structural covariance across mental disorders.
Subject-level structural covariance aberrance in patients with mental disorders was investigated using individualized differential structural covariance network. This method inferred structural covariance aberrance at the individual level by measuring the degree of structural covariance in patients deviating from matched healthy controls (HCs). T1-weighted anatomical images of 513 participants (105, 98, 190 participants with depression, OCD and schizophrenia, respectively, and 130 age- and sex-matched HCs) were acquired and analyzed.
Patients with mental disorders exhibited notable heterogeneity in terms of altered edges, which were otherwise obscured by group-level analysis. The three disorders shared high difference variability in edges attached to the frontal network and the subcortical-cerebellum network, and they also exhibited disease-specific variability distributions. Despite notable variability, patients with the same disorder shared disease-specific groups of altered edges. Specifically, depression was characterized by altered edges attached to the subcortical-cerebellum network; OCD, by altered edges linking the subcortical-cerebellum and motor networks; and schizophrenia, by altered edges related to the frontal network.
These results have potential implications for understanding heterogeneity and facilitating personalized diagnosis and interventions for mental disorders.
Understanding factors associated with post-discharge sleep quality among COVID-19 survivors is important for intervention development.
This study investigated sleep quality and its correlates among COVID-19 patients 6 months after their most recent hospital discharge.
Healthcare providers at hospitals located in five different Chinese cities contacted adult COVID-19 patients discharged between 1 February and 30 March 2020. A total of 199 eligible patients provided verbal informed consent and completed the interview. Using score on the single-item Sleep Quality Scale as the dependent variable, multiple linear regression models were fitted.
Among all participants, 10.1% reported terrible or poor sleep quality, and 26.6% reported fair sleep quality, 26.1% reported worse sleep quality when comparing their current status with the time before COVID-19, and 33.7% were bothered by a sleeping disorder in the past 2 weeks. After adjusting for significant background characteristics, factors associated with sleep quality included witnessing the suffering (adjusted B = −1.15, 95% CI = −1.70, −0.33) or death (adjusted B = −1.55, 95% CI = −2.62, −0.49) of other COVID-19 patients during hospital stay, depressive symptoms (adjusted B = −0.26, 95% CI = −0.31, −0.20), anxiety symptoms (adjusted B = −0.25, 95% CI = −0.33, −0.17), post-traumatic stress disorders (adjusted B = −0.16, 95% CI = −0.22, −0.10) and social support (adjusted B = 0.07, 95% CI = 0.04, 0.10).
COVID-19 survivors reported poor sleep quality. Interventions and support services to improve sleep quality should be provided to COVID-19 survivors during their hospital stay and after hospital discharge.
The effect of vitamin D (VD) on the risk of preeclampsia (PE) is uncertain. Few of previous studies focused on the relationship between dietary VD intake and PE risk. Therefore, we conducted this 1:1 matched case–control study to explore the association of dietary VD intake and serum VD concentrations with PE risk in Chinese pregnant women. A total of 440 pairs of participants were recruited during March 2016 to June 2019. Dietary information was obtained using a seventy-eight-item semi-quantitative FFQ. Serum concentrations of 25(OH)D2 and 25(OH)D3 were measured by liquid chromatography–tandem MS. Multivariate conditional logistic regression was used to estimate OR and 95 % CI. Restricted cubic splines (RCS) were plotted to evaluate the dose–response relationship of dietary VD intake and serum VD concentrations with PE risk. Compared with the lowest quartile, the OR of the highest quartile were 0·45 (95 % CI 0·29, 0·71, Ptrend = 0·001) for VD dietary intake and 0·26 (95 % CI 0·11, 0·60, Ptrend = 0·003) for serum levels after adjusting for confounders. In addition, the RCS analysis suggested a reverse J-shaped relationship between dietary VD intake and PE risk (P-nonlinearity = 0·02). A similar association was also found between serum concentrations of total 25(OH)D and PE risk (P-nonlinearity = 0·02). In conclusion, this study provides evidence that higher dietary intake and serum levels of VD are associated with the lower risk of PE in Chinese pregnant women.
Nowadays, automated essay evaluation (AEE) systems play an important role in evaluating essays and have been successfully used in large-scale writing assessments. However, existing AEE systems mostly focus on grammar or shallow content measurements rather than higher-order traits such as ideas. This paper proposes a new formulation of graph-based features for concept maps using word embeddings to evaluate the quality of ideas for Chinese compositions. The concept map derived from the student’s composition is composed of the concepts appearing in the essay and the co-occurrence relationship between the concepts. By utilizing real compositions written by eighth-grade students from a large-scale assessment, the scoring accuracy of the computer evaluation system (named AECC-I: Automated Evaluation for Chinese Compositions—Ideas) is higher than the baselines. The results indicate that the proposed method deepens the construct-relevant coverage of automatic ideas evaluation in compositions and that it can provide constructive feedback for students.
Social cognition has not previously been assessed in treatment-naive patients with chronic schizophrenia, in patients over 60 years of age, or in patients with less than 5 years of schooling.
We revised a commonly used measure of social cognition, the Reading the Mind in the Eyes Test (RMET), by expanding the instructions, using both self-completion and interviewer-completion versions (for illiterate respondents), and classifying each test administration as ‘successfully completed’ or ‘incomplete’. The revised instrument (RMET-CV-R) was administered to 233 treatment-naive patients with chronic schizophrenia (UT), 154 treated controls with chronic schizophrenia (TC), and 259 healthy controls (HC) from rural communities in China.
In bivariate and multivariate analyses, successful completion rates and RMET-CV-R scores (percent correct judgments about emotion exhibited in 70 presented slides) were highest in HC, intermediate in TC, and lowest in UT (adjusted completion rates, 97.0, 72.4, and 49.9%, respectively; adjusted RMET-CV-R scores, 45.4, 38.5, and 34.6%, respectively; all p < 0.02). Stratified analyses by the method of administration (self-completed v. interviewer-completed) and by education and age (‘educated-younger’ v. ‘undereducated-older’) show the same relationship between groups (i.e. NC>TC>UT), though not all differences remain statistically significant.
We find poorer social cognition in treatment-naive than in treated patients with chronic schizophrenia. The discriminant validity of RMET-CV-R in undereducated, older patients demonstrates the feasibility of administering revised versions of RMET to patients who may otherwise be considered ineligible due to education or age by changing the method of test administration and carefully assessing respondents' ability to complete the task successfully.
A southern population (S) from Xiushui County (29°1′N, 114°4′E) and a northern population (N) from Shenyang city (41°48′N, 123°23′E) of the cabbage beetle, Colaphellus bowringi vary greatly in their life-history traits, and may serve as an excellent model with which to study the inheritance of life-history traits. In the present study, we performed intraspecific hybridization using the two populations, comparing the key life-history traits (fecundity, development time, body weight, growth rate, and sexual size dimorphism (SDD)) between the two populations (S♀ × S♂ and N♀ × N♂) and their two hybrid populations (S♀ × N♂ and N♀ × S♂ populations) at 19, 22, 25, and 28°C. Our results showed that there were significant differences in life-history traits between the two parental populations, with the S population having a significantly higher fecundity, shorter larval development time, larger body weight, higher growth rate, and greater weight loss during metamorphosis than the N population at almost all temperatures. However, these life-history traits in the two hybrid populations were intermediate between those of their parents. The life-history traits in the S × N and N × S populations more closely resembled those of the maternal S population and N population, respectively, showing maternal effects. Weight loss for both sexes was highest in the S population, followed by the S × N, N × S, and N populations at all temperatures, suggesting that larger pupae lost more weight during metamorphosis. The changes in SSD with temperature were similar between the S and the S × N populations and between the N and the N × S populations, also suggesting a maternal effect. Overall, our results showed no drastic effect of hybridization on C. bowringi, being neither negative (hybrid inferiority) nor positive (heterosis). Rather, the phenotypes of hybrids were intermediate between the phenotypes of their parents.
Outbreaks of norovirus-associated gastroenteritis have been reported in schools in recent decades in China. For early warning and response to infectious disease outbreaks, the Shanghai Infectious Diseases Bud Event Surveillance System (IDBESS) was established in 2016. Bud event is a term used for the early sign of a potential infectious disease outbreak in public settings when the first few cases appear. This study aimed to describe the epidemiological characteristics of Norovirus-associated gastroenteritis bud events from June 2016 to December 2017 and to understand factors influencing the severity of events. Data were extracted from the IDBESS, supplemented by field investigations and school absence surveillance. In total, 189 bud events of Norovirus-associated gastroenteritis were reported in schools and kindergartens, affecting 3827 individuals and 52.38% happened in primary schools. The attack rate of Norovirus-associated gastroenteritis was 3.82% on average in students in the affected schools. In each event, case numbers varied between 5 and 148, with a median of 16. The duration of bud events lasted for 2 days on average. School absence happened in 47.93% (1797/3749) of affected students and the average duration of absence was 3.07 days. It was found that a longer delay before reporting was associated with a longer-lasting duration of bud event (OR = 2.25, 95% CI: 1.65, 3.07). In conclusion, ascribed to the sensitive threshold for alerting and the timely field investigation, the surveillance of bud events of Norovirus-associated gastroenteritis is effective in the control of Norovirus infection among preschool children and students in Shanghai.
Protein content (PC) and oil content (OC) are important breeding traits of soybean [Glycine max (L.) Merr.]. Quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping for PC and OC is important for molecular breeding in soybean; however, the negative correlation between PC and OC influences the accuracy of QTL mapping. In the current study, a four-way recombinant inbred lines (FW-RILs) population comprising 160 lines derived from the cross (Kenfeng14 × Kenfeng15) × (Heinong48 × Kenfeng19) was planted in eight different environments and PC and OC measured. Conditional and unconditional QTL analyses were carried out by interval mapping (IM) and inclusive complete IM based on linkage maps of 275 simple sequences repeat markers in a FW-RILs population. This analysis revealed 59 unconditional QTLs and 52 conditional QTLs among the FW-RILs. An analysis of additive effects indicated that the effects of 13 protein QTLs were not related to OC, whereas OC affected the expression of 13 and eight QTLs either partially or completely, respectively. Eight QTLs affecting OC were not influenced by PC, whereas six and 26 QTLs were partially and fully affected by PC, respectively. Among the QTLs detected in the current study, two protein QTLs and five oil QTLs had not been previously reported. These findings will facilitate marker-assisted selection and molecular breeding of soybean.
Reduced graphene oxide supported titanium dioxide (GO/TiO2) heterojunction composites as highly active photocatalysts were synthesized via simple ultrasonic mixing and hydrothermal reaction using TiCl3 and GO as precursors. Their structure and morphology were characterized by X-ray diffraction, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, Raman spectra, UV-vis spectroscopy, and thermogravimetic analysis. The GO/TiO2 heterojunction composites were used to degrade methyl orange (MO). The adsorption and photocatalytic degradation rate of the prepared GO/TiO2 composites increased by nearly three times compared with that of pristine TiO2 or GO, which reached up 90%, to degrade MO after 4 h, which provides a simple method to obtain photocatalytic materials.
l-Carnitine is essential for mitochondrial β-oxidation and has been used as a lipid-lowering feed additive in humans and farmed animals. d-Carnitine is an optical isomer of l-carnitine and dl-carnitine has been widely used in animal feeds. However, the functional differences between l- and d-carnitine are difficult to study because of the endogenous l-carnitine background. In the present study, we developed a low-carnitine Nile tilapia model by treating fish with a carnitine synthesis inhibitor, and used this model to investigate the functional differences between l- and d-carnitine in nutrient metabolism in fish. l- or d-carnitine (0·4 g/kg diet) was fed to the low-carnitine tilapia for 6 weeks. l-Carnitine feeding increased the acyl-carnitine concentration from 3522 to 10 822 ng/g and alleviated the lipid deposition from 15·89 to 11·97 % in the liver of low-carnitine tilapia. However, as compared with l-carnitine group, d-carnitine feeding reduced the acyl-carnitine concentration from 10 822 to 5482 ng/g, and increased lipid deposition from 11·97 to 20·21 % and the mRNA expression of the genes involved in β-oxidation and detoxification in the liver. d-Carnitine feeding also induced hepatic inflammation, oxidative stress and apoptosis. A metabolomic investigation further showed that d-carnitine feeding increased glycolysis, protein metabolism and activity of the tricarboxylic acid cycle and oxidative phosphorylation. Thus, l-carnitine can be physiologically utilised in fish, whereas d-carnitine is metabolised as a xenobiotic and induces lipotoxicity. d-Carnitine-fed fish demonstrates increases in peroxisomal β-oxidation, glycolysis and amino acid degradation to maintain energy homeostasis. Therefore, d-carnitine is not recommended for use in farmed animals.
Fatigue properties of Mo/W multilayers with individual layer thickness (λ) of 5, 20, 50 and 100 nm on flexible polyimide substrates were investigated. The experimental results show that the fatigue resistance increases with decreasing λ from 100 nm to 20 nm, and reaches the maximum at λ=20 nm, and then decreases when further decreasing λ. Fatigue cracks of Mo/W multilayers with different λ were found to propagate along columnar grain boundary in the out-of-plane direction and along the boundary of cluster structures. The enhanced fatigue resistance is attributed to the larger cluster inclination angles and the more tortuous in-plane cracking paths.
Northeastern China is a region of high tick abundance, multiple tick-borne pathogens and likely human infections. The spectrum of diseases caused by tick-borne pathogens has not been objectively evaluated in this region for clinical management and for comparison with other regions globally where tick-transmitted diseases are common. Based on clinical symptoms, PCR, indirect immunofluorescent assay and (or) blood smear, we identified and described tick-borne diseases from patients with recent tick bite seen at Mudanjiang Forestry Central Hospital. From May 2010 to September 2011, 42% (75/180) of patients were diagnosed with a specific tick-borne disease, including Lyme borreliosis, tick-borne encephalitis, human granulocytic anaplasmosis, human babesiosis and spotted fever group rickettsiosis. When we compared clinical and laboratory features to identify factors that might discriminate tick-transmitted infections from those lacking that evidence, we revealed that erythema migrans and neurological manifestations were statistically significantly differently presented between those with and without documented aetiologies (P < 0.001, P = 0.003). Twelve patients (6.7%, 12/180) were co-infected with two tick-borne pathogens. We demonstrated the poor ability of clinicians to identify the specific tick-borne disease. In addition, it is necessary to develop specific laboratory assays for optimal diagnosis of tick-borne diseases.
Kawasaki disease, which is characterised by systemic vasculitides accompanied by acute fever, is regularly treated by intravenous immunoglobulin to avoid lesion formation in the coronary artery; however, the mechanism of intravenous immunoglobulin therapy is unclear. Hence, we aimed to analyse the global expression profile of serum exosomal proteins before and after administering intravenous immunoglobulin.
Two-dimensional electrophoresis coupled with mass spectrometry analysis was used to identify the differentially expressed proteome of serum exosomes in patients with Kawasaki disease before and after intravenous immunoglobulin therapy.
Our analysis revealed 69 differential protein spots in the Kawasaki disease group with changes larger than 1.5-fold and 59 differential ones in patients after intravenous immunoglobulin therapy compared with the control group. Gene ontology analysis revealed that the acute-phase response disappeared, the functions of the complement system and innate immune response were enhanced, and the antibacterial humoral response pathway of corticosteroids and cardioprotection emerged after administration of intravenous immunoglobulin. Further, we showed that complement C3 and apolipoprotein A-IV levels increased before and decreased after intravenous immunoglobulin therapy and that the insulin-like growth factor-binding protein complex acid labile subunit displayed reverse alteration before and after intravenous immunoglobulin therapy. These observations might be potential indicators of intravenous immunoglobulin function.
Our results show the differential proteomic profile of serum exosomes of patients with Kawasaki disease before and after intravenous immunoglobulin therapy, such as complement C3, apolipoprotein A-IV, and insulin-like growth factor-binding protein complex acid labile subunit. These results may be useful in the identification of markers for monitoring intravenous immunoglobulin therapy in patients with Kawasaki disease.
Previous studies have supported the theory that there is a positive association between ferritin and carotid atherosclerosis in Western people. Diet plays an important role in determining serum ferritin concentration. Asian dietary patterns are different from Western dietary patterns, implying that there may be a difference in the association of ferritin with carotid atherosclerosis between Asian and Western people. However, few studies focus on the association between ferritin and carotid atherosclerosis among Asians. The aim of this study was to investigate how serum ferritin levels are associated with carotid atherosclerosis in an Asian adult population. A cross-sectional assessment was performed in 8302 adults in Tianjin, China. Carotid intima-media thickness (IMT) and plaques were assessed using ultrasonography, and serum ferritin was measured using the protein chip-chemiluminescence method. Multiple logistic regression analysis was used to examine the association between quartiles of serum ferritin concentration and carotid atherosclerosis. In the present study, the overall prevalence of IMT and carotid plaques in participants is 29·2 and 22·7 %, respectively. In women, after adjustments for potentially confounding factors, the OR of IMT and carotid plaques by increasing serum ferritin quartiles were 1·00, 1·39 (95 % CI 0·98–1·99), 1·39 (95 % CI 0·99–1·97), 1·81 (95 % CI 1·30–2·55) (Pfor trend<0·001) and 1·00, 1·24 (95 % CI 0·89–1·73), 1·18 (95 % CI 0·85–1·65), 1·59 (95 % CI 1·15–2·20) (Pfor trend<0·01), respectively. However, no association was found between serum ferritin and carotid atherosclerosis in men. The study demonstrated that increased serum ferritin levels are independently associated with IMT and carotid plaques in Asian women but not in Asian men.
Polymannuronic acid (PM), one of numerous alginates isolated from brown seaweeds, is known to possess antioxidant activities. In this study, we examined its potential role in reducing body weight gain and attenuating inflammation induced by a high-fat and high-sucrose diet (HFD) as well as its effect on modulating the gut microbiome in mice. A 30-d PM treatment significantly reduced the diet-induced body weight gain and blood TAG levels (P<0·05) and improved glucose tolerance in male C57BL/6J mice. PM decreased lipopolysaccharides in blood and ameliorated local inflammation in the colon and the epididymal adipose tissue. Compared with low-fat and low-sucrose diet (LFD), HFD significantly reduced the mean number of species-level operational taxonomic units (OTU) per sample as well as species richness (P<0·05) but did not appear to affect other microbial diversity indices. Moreover, compared with LFD, HFD altered the abundance of approximately 23 % of the OTU detected (log10 linear discriminant analysis (LDA) score>2·0). PM also had a profound impact on the microbial composition in the gut microbiome and resulted in a distinct microbiome structure. For example, PM significantly increased the abundance of a probiotic bacterium, Lactobacillus reuteri (log10 LDA score>2·0). Together, our results suggest that PM may exert its immunoregulatory effects by enhancing proliferation of several species with probiotic activities while repressing the abundance of the microbial taxa that harbor potential pathogens. Our findings should facilitate mechanistic studies on PM as a potential bioactive compound to alleviate obesity and the metabolic syndrome.
A well-preserved fossil priapulid worm, Xiaoheiqingella sp., is reported from the early Cambrian Guanshan Lagerstätte (Cambrian Series II, Stage 4) near Kunming City, Yunnan Province, SW China. The body of the animal consists of four sections: a swollen introvert, a constricted neck, a finely annulated trunk and a caudal appendage. The body configuration exhibits a close resemblance to that of the crown group priapulid Xiaoheiqingella peculiaris from the early Cambrian Chengjiang Lagerstätte. The new discovery provides another striking example of crown group priapulids, representing the third occurrence of crown group fossil priapulids after the Chengjiang Lagerstätte (Cambrian Series II, Stage 3) and the Mazon Creek Lagerstätte (late Moscovian Stage, Pennsylvanian). The discovery also sheds new light on the early diversity and evolution of priapulid worms.
We investigated the boron isotopic composition in loess–paleosol sequences in five different profiles in the Chinese Loess Plateau. Three possible boron sources are identified: atmospheric input, carbonates, and weathered silicate rocks. Variations of [Sr], [B], δ11B and the magnetic susceptibility correlate well with the pedogenetic intensity in three out of the five studied profiles, where pedogenesis under a cold–dry climate indicates lower δ11B, lower [B], lower magnetic susceptibility and higher [Sr] values. Exceptions to the variations between the δ11B and other known proxies were observed in arenaceous soils and the Red Clay sequence: the former suggested that vertical redistribution probably occurred with the boron migration, and the latter indicated an unknown mechanism of susceptibility enhancement. A better correlation between the δ11B and magnetic susceptibility and the quantitative estimation of boron budget from each source confirms the influence of paleoenvironmental changes on boron geochemical cycle. Significant positive correlations in Sr/Ca vs. B/Ca and Mg/Ca vs. B/Ca reflect consistent enrichment behavior of those mobile elements into calcium carbonate. The preliminary results imply that boron isotopic compositions in soils can be a potential geochemical proxy to reconstruct the paleoenvironmental changes in loess–paleosol sequences.
While oral antidepressants reach efficacy after weeks, single-dose intravenous (i.v.) ketamine has rapid, yet time-limited antidepressant effects. We aimed to determine the efficacy and safety of single-dose i.v. ketamine augmentation of escitalopram in major depressive disorder (MDD).
Thirty outpatients with severe MDD (17-item Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression total score ⩾24) were randomized to 4 weeks double-blind treatment with escitalopram 10 mg/day+single-dose i.v. ketamine (0.5 mg/kg over 40 min) or escitalopram 10 mg/day + placebo (0.9% i.v. saline). Depressive symptoms were measured using the Montgomery–Asberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS) and the Quick Inventory of Depressive Symptomatology – Self-Report (QIDS-SR). Suicidal ideation was evaluated with the QIDS-SR item 12. Adverse psychopathological effects were measured with the Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale (BPRS)-positive symptoms, Young Mania Rating Scale (YMRS) and Clinician Administered Dissociative States Scale (CADSS). Patients were assessed at baseline, 1, 2, 4, 24 and 72 h and 7, 14, 21 and 28 days. Time to response (⩾50% MADRS score reduction) was the primary outcome.
By 4 weeks, more escitalopram + ketamine-treated than escitalopram + placebo-treated patients responded (92.3% v. 57.1%, p = 0.04) and remitted (76.9% v. 14.3%, p = 0.001), with significantly shorter time to response [hazard ratio (HR) 0.04, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.01–0.22, p < 0.001] and remission (HR 0.11, 95% CI 0.02–0.63, p = 0.01). Compared to escitalopram + placebo, escitalopram + ketamine was associated with significantly lower MADRS scores from 2 h to 2 weeks [(peak = 3 days–2 weeks; effect size (ES) = 1.08–1.18)], QIDS-SR scores from 2 h to 2 weeks (maximum ES = 1.27), and QIDS-SR suicidality from 2 to 72 h (maximum ES = 2.24). Only YMRS scores increased significantly with ketamine augmentation (1 and 2 h), without significant BPRS or CADSS elevation.
Single-dose i.v. ketamine augmentation of escitalopram was safe and effective in severe MDD, holding promise for speeding up early oral antidepressant efficacy.