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From 24 January 2020 to 18 May 2020, Chaoshan took measures to limit the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), such as restricting public gatherings, wearing masks and suspending classes. We explored the effects of these measures on the pathogen spectrum of paediatric respiratory tract infections in Chaoshan. Pharyngeal swab samples were collected from 4075 children hospitalised for respiratory tract infection before (May–December 2019) and after (January–August 2020) the COVID-19 outbreak. We used liquid chip technology to analyse 14 respiratory pathogens. The data were used to explore between-group differences, age-related differences and seasonal variations in respiratory pathogens. The number of cases in the outbreak group (1222) was 42.8% of that in the pre-outbreak group (2853). Virus-detection rates were similar in the outbreak (48.3%, 590/1222) and pre-outbreak groups (51.5%, 1468/2853; χ2 = 3.446, P = 0.065), while the bacteria-detection rate was significantly lower in the outbreak group (26.2%, 320/1222) than in the pre-outbreak group (44.1%, 1258/2853; χ2 = 115.621, P < 0.05). With increasing age, the proportions of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and cytomegalovirus (CMV) infections decreased, while those of Mycoplasma pneumoniae and adenovirus infections increased. Streptococcus pneumoniae, CMV and rhinovirus infections peaked in autumn and winter, while RSV infections peaked in summer and winter. We found that the proportion of virus-only detection decreased with age, while the proportion of bacteria-only detection increased with age (Table 2). Anti-COVID-19 measures significantly reduced the number of paediatric hospitalisations for respiratory tract infections, significantly altered the pathogen spectrum of such infections and decreased the overall detection rates of 14 common respiratory pathogens. The proportion of bacterial, but not viral, infections decreased.
The aim of this study was to evaluate the therapeutic effects of osteopontin neutralization treatment on schistosome-induced liver injury in BALB/C mice. We randomly divided 100 BALB/C mice into groups A, B, C, D and group E. Mice in all groups except group A were abdominally infected with schistosomal cercariae to induce a schistosomal hepatopathological model. Mice in group C, D and group E were respectively administered with praziquantel, praziquantel plus colchicine and praziquantel plus neutralizing osteopontin antibody. We extracted mouse liver tissues at 3 and 9 weeks after the ‘stool-eggs-positive’ day, observed liver histopathological changes by haematoxylin-eosin and Masson trichrome staining and detected the expression of osteopontin, alpha-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA) and transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-β1) by immunohistochemistry, RT-PCR and Western blot. We found that praziquantel plus neutralizing osteopontin antibody treatment significantly decreased the granuloma dimension, the percentage of collagen and the expression of osteopontin, α-SMA and TGF-β1 compared to praziquantel plus colchicine treatment in both the acute and chronic stage of schistosomal liver damage (P<0·05). So we believe that the combined regimen of osteopontin immunoneutralization and anti-helminthic treatment can reduce the granulomatous response and liver fibrosis during the schistosomal hepatopathologic course.
mRNA differential display was used to analyse differences of gene expression between cross combinations, EC and CE, and their parental inbreeds, White Plymouth Rock (EE) and Silkies (CC). Three genes specifically expressed and one gene over-expressed in hybrids were found. By cloning, sequencing and BLAST analysis, one specific expression cDNA band was identified as the cytosolic isocitrate dehydrogenase gene, two were new genes of unknown function, and the over-expressed one was a proteosome subunit p112 gene. The results imply that functional and regulatory genes, expressed or over-expressed in chicken hybrids, are related to heterosis of some carcass traits.
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