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Co-receptor tropism has been identified to correlate with HIV-1 transmission and the disease progression in patients. A molecular epidemiology investigation of co-receptor tropism is important for clinical practice and effective control of HIV-1. In this study, we investigated the co-receptor tropism on HIV-1 variants of 85 antiretroviral-naive patients with Geno2pheno algorithm at a false-positive rate of 10%. Our data showed that a majority of the subjects harboured the CCR5-tropic virus (81.2%, 69/85). No significant differences in gender, age, baseline CD4+ T-cell counts and transmission routes were observed between subjects infected with CXCR4-tropic or CCR5-tropic virus. The co-receptor tropism appeared to be associated with the virus genotype; a significantly more CXCR4-use was predicted in CRF01_AE infections whereas all CRF07_BC and CRF08_BC were predicted to use CCR5 co-receptor. Sequences analysis of V3 revealed a higher median net charge in the CXCR4 viruses over CCR5 viruses (4.0 vs. 3.0, P < 0.05). The predicted N-linked glycosylation site between amino acids 6 and 8 in the V3 region was conserved in CCR5 viruses, but not in CXCR4 viruses. Besides, variable crown motifs were observed in both CCR5 and CXCR4 viruses, of which the most prevalent motif GPGQ existed in both viral tropism and almost all genotypes identified in this study except subtype B. These findings may offer important implications for clinical practice and enhance our understanding of HIV-1 biology.
To investigate a Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) outbreak event involving multiple healthcare facilities in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; to characterize transmission; and to explore infection control implications.
Cases presented in 4 healthcare facilities in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: a tertiary-care hospital, a specialty pulmonary hospital, an outpatient clinic, and an outpatient dialysis unit.
Contact tracing and testing were performed following reports of cases at 2 hospitals. Laboratory results were confirmed by real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (rRT-PCR) and/or genome sequencing. We assessed exposures and determined seropositivity among available healthcare personnel (HCP) cases and HCP contacts of cases.
In total, 48 cases were identified, involving patients, HCP, and family members across 2 hospitals, an outpatient clinic, and a dialysis clinic. At each hospital, transmission was linked to a unique index case. Moreover, 4 cases were associated with superspreading events (any interaction where a case patient transmitted to ≥5 subsequent case patients). All 4 of these patients were severely ill, were initially not recognized as MERS-CoV cases, and subsequently died. Genomic sequences clustered separately, suggesting 2 distinct outbreaks. Overall, 4 (24%) of 17 HCP cases and 3 (3%) of 114 HCP contacts of cases were seropositive.
We describe 2 distinct healthcare-associated outbreaks, each initiated by a unique index case and characterized by multiple superspreading events. Delays in recognition and in subsequent implementation of control measures contributed to secondary transmission. Prompt contact tracing, repeated testing, HCP furloughing, and implementation of recommended transmission-based precautions for suspected cases ultimately halted transmission.
The present study investigated the adsorption behaviour of Direct Orange 34, a highly toxic dye used in textile industries in Tunisia, on modified kaolinite-rich clays. A kaolin from the Sidi Bader (SDB) area was activated with hydrochloric acid to create the activated clay referred to hearafter as SDBa, or treated with FeSO4•7H2O to obtain its Fe-saturated form, Fe-SDB. The adsorbents were characterized by X-ray diffraction, X-ray fluorescence, transmission electron microscopy, BET surface area and zeta-potential measurements. The equilibrium adsorption data were analysed using the Langmuir and Freundlich isotherms. The estimated adsorption capacities (qm) for the dye were improved in the Fe-loaded samples. The good fit (R2 = 0.99) with a pseudo-second order expression suggests that the adsorption process could be effective following a chemisorption mechanism. At acidic pH, the optimum dye-retention rate was achieved for SDB (83%) after 60 min. The uptake decreased at neutral pH and increased again in alkaline media. This behaviour might be explained by the formation of covalent bonds between the OH radicals on the external surface and the negatively charged dye molecules. On the other hand, Fe impregnation increased the zeta potential of kaolinite, leading to a greater adsorption capacity compared to its natural and acid-activated counterparts. In addition, the adsorption rate increased when increasing the suspension temperature from 283 to 313 K. The modified kaolinite-rich materials showed satisfactory affinity for adsorbing this reactive dye.
Recent researches have showed that probiotics promote bone health in humans and rodents. The objective of this study was to determine if probiotics have the similar effects in laying hens. Ninety-six 60-week-old White Leghorn hens were assigned to four-hen cages based on their BW. The cages were randomly assigned to 1 of 4 treatments: a layer diet mixed with a commercial probiotic product (containing Enterococcus faecium, Pediococcus acidilactici, Bifidobacterium animalis and Lactobacillus reuteri) at 0, 0.5, 1.0 or 2.0 g/kg feed (Control, 0.5×, 1.0× and 2.0×) for 7 weeks. Cecal Bifidobacterium spp. counts were higher in all probiotic groups (P<0.001) compared with the control group. The percentage of unmarketable eggs (cracked and shell-less eggs) was decreased in both 0.5× and 2.0× groups compared with the control group (P=0.02), mainly due to the reduction of shell-less eggs (P=0.05). The increases in tibial and femoral mineral density and femoral mineral content (P=0.04, 0.03 and 0.02, respectively), with a concomitant trend of increases in humerus mineral density and tibial mineral content (P=0.07 and 0.08, respectively), occurred in the 2.0× group. However, the bone remodeling indicators of circulating osteocalcin and c-terminal telopeptide of type I collagen were similar among all groups (P>0.05). In addition, the plasma concentrations of cytokines (interleukin-1β, interleukin-6, interleukin-10, interferon-γ and tumor necrosis factor-α) and corticosterone as well as the levels of heterophil to lymphocyte ratio were similar between the 2.0× group and the control group (P>0.05). In line with these findings, no differences of cecal tonsil mRNA expressions of interleukin-1β, interleukin-6 and lipopolysaccharide-induced tumor necrosis factor-α factor were detected between these two groups (P>0.05). These results suggest that immune cytokines and corticosterone may not involve in the probiotic-induced improvement of eggshell quality and bone mineralization in laying hens. In conclusion, the dietary probiotic supplementation altered cecal microbiota composition, resulting in reduced shell-less egg production and improved bone mineralization in laying hens; and the dietary dose of the probiotic up to 2.0× did not cause negative stress reactions in laying hens.
The triplite LiFeSO4F displays both the highest potential ever reported for an Fe-based compound, as well as a comparable specific energy with that of popular LiFePO4. The synthesis is still a challenge because the present approaches are connected with long time, special equipments or organic reagents, etc. In this work, the triplite LiFeSO4F powder was synthesized through an ambient two-step solid-state route. The reaction process and phase purity were analyzed, coupled with structure refinement and electrochemical test.
OBJECTIVES/SPECIFIC AIMS: Compare effectiveness of a patient case-based, interactive teaching approach that included optional student genotyping with traditional didactic teaching strategies for increasing students’ knowledge and ability to effectively use pharmacogenomic data in clinical decision making. METHODS/STUDY POPULATION: The UF College of Pharmacy offers a required Personalized Medicine (PM) course for pharmacy students as well as an elective course, Clinical Applications of Personalized Medicine (CAPM). Students dual enrolled in the PM and elective CAPM courses comprised the intervention (INT) group, with interactive patient case-based teaching and the option to undergo personal genotyping, whereas students enrolled in PM alone comprised the control (CTR) group, which primarily used a traditional didactic teaching format and did not include personal genotyping. Both groups completed a pre- and post-course patient case-based test (15 questions/1 point each) to evaluate their knowledge and abilities to apply genotype and other patient-specific data to drug therapy recommendations. Pre- and post-course test scores for knowledge were compared between the INT and CTR groups using the Student t-test. RESULTS/ANTICIPATED RESULTS: In total, 52 students completed surveys (INT group, n=21; CTR group, n=31). Race was similar between groups, but there were fewer females in the INT compared with CTR group (8 vs. 22, p=0.02). Pre-course knowledge scores did not differ between INT and CTR groups (6.8±2.2 vs. 6.3±1.6 respectively, p=0.34), however, post-course scores were significantly higher in the INT Versus CTR group (10.0±2.3 vs. 7.5±1.7, p<0.0001). DISCUSSION/SIGNIFICANCE OF IMPACT: There have been significant advancements in the clinical applications of pharmacogenomic and genomic data, however, barriers to routine clinical adoption of genomic medicine persist. Developing education and training methods that equip practitioners to effectively translate genomic data into evidence-based clinical recommendations has been identified as a key strategy to overcome such barriers. Our data suggest that a personalized medicine course that employs patient-centered, case-based teaching strategies and includes optional personal genotyping for students compared with traditional didactic instruction improves students’ knowledge and abilities to apply pharmacogenomic data in practice-based scenarios. These results can inform future strategies for educating healthcare professionals on the clinical use of pharmacogenomic and genomic data.
Methylphenidate and atomoxetine are commonly prescribed for treating attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). However, their therapeutic neural mechanisms remain unclear.
After baseline evaluation including cognitive testing of the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery (CANTAB), drug-naive children with ADHD (n = 46), aged 7–17 years, were randomly assigned to a 12-week treatment with methylphenidate (n = 22) or atomoxetine (n = 24). Intrinsic brain activity, including the fractional amplitude of low-frequency fluctuations (fALFF) and regional homogeneity (ReHo), was quantified via resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging at baseline and week 12.
Reductions in inattentive symptoms were related to increased fALFF in the left superior temporal gyrus and left inferior parietal lobule for ADHD children treated with methylphenidate, and in the left lingual gyrus and left inferior occipital gyrus for ADHD children treated with atomoxetine. Hyperactivity/impulsivity symptom reductions were differentially related to increased fALFF in the methylphenidate group and to decreased fALFF in the atomoxetine group in bilateral precentral and postcentral gyri. Prediction analyses in the atomoxetine group revealed negative correlations between pre-treatment CANTAB simple reaction time and fALFF change in the left lingual gyrus and left inferior occipital gyrus, and positive correlations between pre-treatment CANTAB simple movement time and fALFF change in bilateral precentral and postcentral gyri and left precuneus, with a negative correlation between movement time and the fALFF change in the left lingual gyrus and the inferior occipital gyrus.
Our findings suggest differential neurophysiological mechanisms for the treatment effects of methylphenidate and atomoxetine in children with ADHD.
A field experiment was conducted to quantify changes in soil aggregation and aggregate-associated soil organic carbon (SOC) concentration 1, 3, 5 and 10 years after abandoned, salinized land in the Manasi River Basin was reclaimed for cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.). Results showed that reclamation significantly increased SOC concentrations and SOC stocks. Specifically, 10 years of cotton production increased SOC concentrations by 45% in the 0–60 cm depth and SOC stocks by 35%. The SOC concentrations and stocks decreased as soil depth increased. Reclamation time, season and soil depth had significant interaction effects on SOC. The SOC concentrations were significantly and positively correlated with available soil nitrogen and available soil phosphorus. Compared with abandoned farmland, macro-aggregate-associated (>250 µm) SOC concentrations in the 0–60 cm depth increased by 47% after 5 years of cotton production and by 53% after 10 years of cotton production. The contribution of macro-aggregate-associated SOC to total SOC in the 0–60 cm depth increased by 87% after 5 years of cotton production and by 69% after 10 years of cotton production. The findings indicate that soil aggregates were more stable after abandoned, salinized farmland was reclaimed for cotton production. Furthermore, cotton production can increase SOC concentrations and sequester C in this arid area.
The objective of this study was to determine if a moderate or high reduction of dietary CP, supplemented with indispensable amino acids (IAA), would affect growth, intestinal morphology and immunological parameters of pigs. A total of 40 barrows (initial BW=13.50±0.50 kg, 45±2 day of age) were used in a completely randomized block design, and allocated to four dietary treatments containing CP levels at 20.00%, 17.16%, 15.30% and 13.90%, respectively. Industrial AA were added to meet the IAA requirements of pigs. After 4-week feeding, blood and tissue samples were obtained from pigs. The results showed that reducing dietary CP level decreased average daily gain, plasma urea nitrogen concentration and relative organ weights of liver and pancreas (P<0.01), and increased feed conversion ratio (P<0.01). Pigs fed the 13.90% CP diet had significantly lower growth performance than that of pigs fed higher CP at 20.00%, 17.16% or 15.30%. Moreover, reducing dietary CP level decreased villous height in duodenum (P<0.01) and crypt depth in duodenum, jejunum and ileum (P<0.01). The reduction in the dietary CP level increased plasma concentrations of methionine, alanine (P<0.01) and lysine (P<0.05), and decreased arginine (P<0.05). Intriguingly, reducing dietary CP level from 20.00% to 13.90% resulted in a significant decrease in plasma concentration of IgG (P<0.05), percentage of CD3+T cells of the peripheral blood (P<0.01), also down-regulated the mRNA abundance of innate immunity-related genes on toll-like receptor 4, myeloid differentiation factor 88 (P<0.01) and nuclear factor kappa B (P<0.05) in the ileum. These results indicate that reducing dietary CP level from 20.00% to 15.30%, supplemented with IAA, had no significant effect on growth performance and had a limited effect on immunological parameters. However, a further reduction of dietary CP level up to 13.90% would lead to poor growth performance and organ development, associated with the modifications of intestinal morphology and immune function.
Enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC) is a type of pathogenic bacteria that cause diarrhea in piglets through colonizing pig small intestine epithelial cells by their surface fimbriae. Different fimbriae type of ETEC including F4, F18, K99 and F41 have been isolated from diarrheal pigs. In this study, we performed a genome-wide association study to map the loci associated with the susceptibility of pigs to ETEC F41 using 39454 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 667 F2 pigs from a White Duroc×Erhualian F2 cross. The most significant SNP (ALGA0022658, P=5.59×10−13) located at 6.95 Mb on chromosome 4. ALGA0022658 was in high linkage disequilibrium (r2>0.5) with surrounding SNPs that span a 1.21 Mb interval. Within this 1.21 Mb region, we investigated ZFAT as a positional candidate gene. We re-sequenced cDNA of ZFAT in four pigs with different susceptibility phenotypes, and identified seven coding variants. We genotyped these seven variants in 287 unrelated pigs from 15 diverse breeds that were measured with ETEC F41 susceptibility phenotype. Five variants showed nominal significant association (P<0.05) with ETEC F41 susceptibility phenotype in International commercial pigs. This study provided refined region associated with susceptibility of pigs to ETEC F41 than that reported previously. Further works are needed to uncover the underlying causal mutation(s).
Using first-principles full-field electromagnetic simulations, we demonstrate that near-perfect above-band-gap solar absorption can be achieved in nanostructured, ultra-thin-film iron oxide photoanodes for photoelectrochemical (PEC) water splitting. In our designed core-shell nanocone structures, all regions of hematite (α-iron oxide) are away from the interface between hematite and water by a minimum distance of less than the hole diffusion length in hematite, which is assumed to be no greater than 20nm. The optical absorption in our structure corresponds to a photocurrent density of 12.5mA/cm2 if one assumes an air mass 1.5 solar spectrum and a unity absorbed photon-to-current efficiency (APCE) for all wavelengths in that spectrum. Our photon management strategy eliminates the trade-off between optical absorption and carrier collection as commonly found in conventional designs of PEC cells, and variants of the strategy are generally applicable to other material systems.
Pre-storage drying-transfer operations and early stage storage expose cladding to higher temperatures and much higher pressure-induced tensile hoop stresses relative to normal operation in-reactor and pool storage under these conditions. Radial hydrides precipitate during cooling and could provide an additional embrittlement mechanism as the cladding temperature decreases below the ductile-to-brittle transition temperature. To simulate this behavior, unirradiated Zircaloy-4 samples were hydrided by a gas charging method to levels that encompass the range of hydrogen concentrations observed in current used fuel. Mechanical testing was carried out by the ring compression test (RCT) method at various temperatures to evaluate the sample’s ductility for both as-hydrided and post-hydride reorientation treated specimens. As-hydrided samples with higher hydrogen concentration (>800 ppm) resulted in lower strain before fracture and reduced maximum load. Increasing RCT temperatures resulted in increased ductility of the as-hydrided cladding. A systematic radial hydride treatment was conducted at various pressures and temperatures for the hydrided samples with H content around 200 ppm. Following the radial hydride treatment, RCTs on the hydride reoriented samples were conducted and exhibited lower ductility compared to as-hydrided samples.
Effusion measurements of hydrogen and implanted helium are reported for (undoped) amorphous and crystalline Si:H and related materials. Effusion of helium observed at temperatures > 600°C is attributed to isolated voids present in the material from the preparation process. While rather high void densities are detected for amorphous silicon films prepared by such deposition techniques like vacuum evaporation or sputtering, much smaller densities are found for plasma grown hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a-Si:H). For device-grade a-Si:H, the density of cavities which can trap helium is estimated to be about 2x1018/cm3at most, suggesting that crystalline silicon type divacancies are not the major hydrogen incorporation site.
The Chinese Spectral Radioheliograph (CSRH) is under construction in Mingantu station of NAOC in China. Now, CSRH-I which includes antenna, receiver and correlator in decimetric wave range has been established. This paper introduced calibration on CSRH and present some results of data processing.
Thin‑film silicon solar cells based on hydrogenated amorphous silicon (a‑Si:H) and hydrogenated microcrystalline silicon (μc‑Si:H) absorber layers are typically deposited using static plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) processes. It has been found that the use of very‑high frequencies (VHF) is beneficial for the material quality at high deposition rates when compared to radio-frequency (RF) processes. In the present work a dynamic VHF‑PECVD technique using linear plasma sources is developed. The linear plasma sources facilitate the use of very-high excitation frequencies on large electrode areas without compromising on the homogeneity of the deposition process. It is shown that state-of-the-art a‑Si:H and μc‑Si:H single-junction solar cells can be deposited incorporating intrinsic layers grown dynamically by VHF-PECVD at 0.35 nm/s and 0.95 nm/s, respectively.
Background: This study examined the use of low doses of antipsychotic medications (300 mg/day CPZeq or less) in older Asian patients with schizophrenia and its demographic and clinical correlates.
Methods: Information on hospitalized patients with schizophrenia, aged 55 years or older, was extracted from the database of the Research on Asian Psychotropic Prescription Patterns (REAP) study (2001–2009). Data on 1,452 patients in eight Asian countries and territories including China, Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, India, and Malaysia were analyzed. Sociodemographic and clinical characteristics and antipsychotic prescriptions were recorded using a standardized protocol and data collection procedure.
Results: The prescription frequency for low doses of antipsychotic medications was 40.9% in the pooled sample. Multiple logistic regression analysis of the whole sample showed that patients on low doses of antipsychotic medications were more likely to be female, have an older age, a shorter length of illness, and less positive symptoms. Of patients in the six countries and territories that participated in all the surveys between 2001 and 2009, those in Japan were less likely to receive low doses of antipsychotics.
Conclusion: Low doses of antipsychotic medications were only applied in less than half of older Asian patients with schizophrenia.
Rose geranium (Pelargonium graveolens, Geraniaceae) has anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory properties, and promotes wound healing. Similarly, Ganoderma tsugae (Ganodermataceae), Codonopsis pilosula (Campanulaceae) and Angelica sinensis (Apiaceae) are traditional Chinese herbs associated with immunomodulatory functions. In the present study, a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled study was conducted to examine whether the Chinese medicinal herb complex, RG-CMH, which represents a mixture of rose geranium and extracts of G. tsugae, C. pilosula and A. sinensis, can improve the immune cell count of cancer patients receiving chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy to prevent leucopenia and immune impairment that usually occurs during cancer therapy. A total of fifty-eight breast cancer patients who received chemotherapy or radiotherapy were enrolled. Immune cell levels in patient serum were determined before, and following, 6 weeks of cancer treatment for patients receiving either an RG-CMH or a placebo. Administration of RG-CMH was associated with a significant reduction in levels of leucocytes from 31·5 % for the placebo group to 13·4 % for the RG-CMH group. Similarly, levels of neutrophils significantly decreased from 35·6 % for the placebo group to 11·0 % for the RG-CMH group. RG-CMH intervention was also associated with a decrease in levels of T cells, helper T cells, cytotoxic T cells and natural killer cells compared with the placebo group. However, these differences between the two groups were not statistically significant. In conclusion, administration of RG-CMH to patients receiving chemotherapy/radiotherapy may have the capacity to delay, or ease, the reduction in levels of leucocytes and neutrophils that are experienced by patients during cancer treatment.
A novel setup for Raman measurements under small angles of incidence during the parallel plate plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition of μc-Si:H films is described. The possible influence of disturbances introduced by the setup on growing films is studied. The substrate heating by the probe beam is investigated and reduced as far as possible. It is shown that with optimized experimental parameters the influence of the in-situ measurements on a growing film can be neglected. With optimized settings, in-situ Raman measurements on the intrinsic layer of a microcrystalline silicon solar cell are carried out with a time resolution of about 40 s corresponding to 20 nm of deposited material during each measurement.