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It has not been well established whether dietary folate intake reduces the risk of diabetes development. We aimed to clarify the prospective association between dietary folate intake and type 2 diabetes (T2D) risk among 7333 Korean adults aged 40 years or older who were included in the Multi-Rural Communities Cohort. Dietary folate intake was estimated from all 106 food items listed on a FFQ, not including folate intake from supplements. Two different measurements of dietary folate intake were used: the baseline consumption and the average consumption from baseline until just before the end of follow-up. The association between folate intake and T2D risk was determined through a modified Poisson regression model with a robust error estimator controlling for potential confounders. For 29 745 person years, 319 cases of diabetes were ascertained. In multivariable analyses, dietary folate intake was inversely associated with risk of T2D for women, not for men. For women, the incidence rate ratio of diabetes in the third tertile compared with the first tertile was 0·57 (95 % CI 0·38–0·87, Pfor trend=0·0085) in the baseline consumption model and 0·64 (95 % CI 0·43–0·95, Pfor trend=0·0244) in the average consumption model. These inverse associations was found in both normal fasting blood glucose group and impaired fasting glucose group among women. Among non-users of multinutrients and vitamin supplements, the significant inverse association remained. Thus, higher dietary intake of folate is prospectively associated with lower risk of diabetes for women.
The Antarctic Roadmap Challenges (ARC) project identified critical requirements to deliver high priority Antarctic research in the 21st century. The ARC project addressed the challenges of enabling technologies, facilitating access, providing logistics and infrastructure, and capitalizing on international co-operation. Technological requirements include: i) innovative automated in situ observing systems, sensors and interoperable platforms (including power demands), ii) realistic and holistic numerical models, iii) enhanced remote sensing and sensors, iv) expanded sample collection and retrieval technologies, and v) greater cyber-infrastructure to process ‘big data’ collection, transmission and analyses while promoting data accessibility. These technologies must be widely available, performance and reliability must be improved and technologies used elsewhere must be applied to the Antarctic. Considerable Antarctic research is field-based, making access to vital geographical targets essential. Future research will require continent- and ocean-wide environmentally responsible access to coastal and interior Antarctica and the Southern Ocean. Year-round access is indispensable. The cost of future Antarctic science is great but there are opportunities for all to participate commensurate with national resources, expertise and interests. The scope of future Antarctic research will necessitate enhanced and inventive interdisciplinary and international collaborations. The full promise of Antarctic science will only be realized if nations act together.
Obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD) has been associated with abnormal cognitive and emotional functions and these dysfunctions may be dependent on the disruption of dynamic interactions within neuronal circuits associated with emotion regulation. Although several studies have shown the aberrant cognitive–affective processing in OCD patients, little is known about how to characterize effective connectivity of the disrupted neural interactions. In the present study, we applied effective connectivity analysis using dynamic causal modeling to explore the disturbed neural interactions in OCD patients.
A total of 20 patients and 21 matched healthy controls performed a delayed-response working memory task under emotional or non-emotional distraction while undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging.
During the delay interval under negative emotional distraction, both groups showed similar patterns of activations in the amygdala. However, under negative emotional distraction, the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) and the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) exhibited significant differences between groups. Bayesian model averaging indicated that the connection from the DLPFC to the OFC was negatively modulated by negative emotional distraction in patients, when compared with healthy controls (p < 0.05, Bonferroni-corrected).
Exaggerated recruitment of the DLPFC may induce the reduction of top-down prefrontal control input over the OFC, leading to abnormal cortico-cortical interaction. This disrupted cortico-cortical interaction under negative emotional distraction may be responsible for dysfunctions of cognitive and emotional processing in OCD patients and may be a component of the pathophysiology associated with OCD.
A trend toward greater body size in dizygotic (DZ) than in monozygotic (MZ) twins has been suggested by some but not all studies, and this difference may also vary by age. We analyzed zygosity differences in mean values and variances of height and body mass index (BMI) among male and female twins from infancy to old age. Data were derived from an international database of 54 twin cohorts participating in the COllaborative project of Development of Anthropometrical measures in Twins (CODATwins), and included 842,951 height and BMI measurements from twins aged 1 to 102 years. The results showed that DZ twins were consistently taller than MZ twins, with differences of up to 2.0 cm in childhood and adolescence and up to 0.9 cm in adulthood. Similarly, a greater mean BMI of up to 0.3 kg/m2 in childhood and adolescence and up to 0.2 kg/m2 in adulthood was observed in DZ twins, although the pattern was less consistent. DZ twins presented up to 1.7% greater height and 1.9% greater BMI than MZ twins; these percentage differences were largest in middle and late childhood and decreased with age in both sexes. The variance of height was similar in MZ and DZ twins at most ages. In contrast, the variance of BMI was significantly higher in DZ than in MZ twins, particularly in childhood. In conclusion, DZ twins were generally taller and had greater BMI than MZ twins, but the differences decreased with age in both sexes.
Depression is common after acute coronary syndrome (ACS) with adverse effects on prognosis. There is little evidence on whether depression treatment improves quality of life (QoL) in ACS patients. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of co-morbid depression and its treatment on QoL in ACS.
In total, 1152 patients were recruited at baseline, 2–14 weeks after a confirmed ACS episode, and 828 were followed 1 year thereafter. Of 446 baseline participants with co-morbid depressive disorders, 300 were randomized to a 24-week double blind trial of escitalopram or placebo, while the remaining 146 received medical treatment only (MTO). QoL was measured by the World Health Organization Quality of Life –Abbreviated form (WHOQOL-BREF).
At baseline, QoL was significantly lower in patients with co-morbid depressive disorder than those without. QoL improvement was significantly greater in those receiving escitalopram than those receiving placebo over the 24-week treatment period. In the 1-year follow-up, the better outcomes associated with escitalopram remained evident against both placebo and MTO.
Depression was significantly associated with worse QoL even in patients with recently developed ACS. Depression treatment was associated with QoL improvement in ACS patients in the 24-week treatment period, the effects of which extended to 1 year.
The Arabidopsis gene AVP1 encodes a vacuolar H+-translocating inorganic pyrophosphatase (enzyme classification (EC) 18.104.22.168) that functions as an electronic proton pump in the vacuolar membrane and affects growth development and the stress response in plants. The current study was conducted to evaluate the molecular properties of the Arabidopsis thaliana vacuolar H+-pyrophosphatase (AVP1) gene in rice (Oryza sativa L.). Incorporation and expression of the transgene was confirmed by semi-quantitative reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and quantitative real-time PCR. Expression of the AVP1 gene in transgenic rice plants (TRP1 and TRP2) resulted in a significantly enhanced tolerance to 5·8 g/l NaCl under greenhouse conditions when compared with the control wild-type (WT) rice plants. Augmented AVP1 expression in the transgenic rice plants (TRP) also affected total biomass and improved ion homoeostasis through increased accumulation of Na+ ions in whole tissues when compared with control WT rice plants under high salinity conditions. The photochemical yield (Fv/Fm) values of TRP were higher than those of the WT rice plants, even though the values decreased over time in both the WT and transgenic (TRP1 to TRP8) rice plants. Furthermore, rice grain yield and biomass of the TRP were at least 15% higher based on culm and root weights, and panicle and spikelet numbers when compared with those of the WT rice plants during the 2010 and 2010 growing seasons in South Korea. Thus, these results suggest that ectopic AVP1 expression conferred tolerance and stress resistance to genetically modified transgenic crop plants by improving cellular ion homoeostasis in response to saline conditions, which enhanced rice yield and biomass under natural conditions in paddy fields.
The objectives of this study were to investigate the muscle fiber characteristics of the pectoralis major muscle, and its relation to growth performance in the random bred control (RBC) and heavy weight (HW) Japanese quail lines at 42 days of age. The HW line had greater body (232.0 v. 100.2 g, P < 0.001) and pectoralis major muscle (19.0 v. 6.2 g, P < 0.001) weights than the RBC line. Color differences were observed between the superficial and deep regions of the pectoralis major muscle, with the superficial region showing a higher value of lightness than the deep region of the RBC or HW lines (P < 0.001). The percentage of the superficial region in the pectoralis major muscle was higher in the HW line compared with the RBC line (46.2% v. 38.0%, P = 0.017). There were no significant differences in the total fiber number in the superficial and deep regions between the two quail lines (P = 0.718). The HW quail line showed a larger mean fiber cross-sectional area (CSA; 375.5 v. 176.6 μm2, P < 0.001) and type IIA fiber CSA (243.7 v. 131.9 μm2, P < 0.001) than the RBC quail line. The HW line also had greater CSA percentage (60.2% v. 34.2%, P < 0.001) and number percentage (41.6% v. 14.2%, P < 0.001) of type IIB fibers, although there were no significant differences in type IIB fiber CSA between the RBC and HW lines (P = 0.219). Therefore, greater body and muscle weights of the HW line are caused by differences in muscle fiber characteristics, especially the proportion of type IIB fiber and the CSA of type IIA fiber, compared with the RBC line. The results of this study suggest that muscle fiber hypertrophy has more impact on body and muscle weights of the different quail lines than muscle fiber hyperplasia.
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.
The incidence and severity of Clostridium difficile infections (CDI) have increased in Western countries. However, there are limited data regarding the epidemiology of CDI in Eastern countries. This nationwide study was conducted in 17 hospitals to determine temporal trends in CDI incidence (from 2004 to 2008) in South Korea. The total incidence of CDI in Korea was 1·7 cases/1000 adult admissions in 2004, and 2·7/1000 cases in 2008 (P = 0·028). When analysing the clinical features of 1367 CDI patients diagnosed in 2008, oral metronidazole was effective as a first-line treatment for CDI (61·9%). Relapse rate was 8·9% and complicated CDI was only observed in 3·6%. The incidence of CDI increased significantly in Korea from 2004 to 2008. Although the clinical features were milder than in Western countries, the increasing burden of CDI needs ongoing surveillance systems.
Composites of single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) and polyaniline (PAni) were synthesized using different approaches. SWNT/PAni nanocomposite with controlled core/shell morphology was achieved. Our chemical sensing tests showed that such core/shell morphology resulted in superior sensor performance, with an increased sensitivity to acetone vapors, and a reversible detection of hydrazine vapors. The reversible detection of parts-per-billion concentrations of hydrazine offers promise for a portable solid-state detector that has potential application in aerospace.
We present comparative studies of optical properties of GaN nanowires (NWs) obtained by two different self-formation techniques: Plasma-Assisted Molecular Beam Epitaxy (PAMBE) growth; and plasma etching of GaN layers deposited by Metal-Organic Vapor Phase Epitaxy (MOVPE). The effects of the coalescence process on grown NW and plasma-induced defects in etched NWs have been studied by photoluminescence (PL) and Raman scattering. In MBE grown NWs, the coalescence-associated defects are extended toward the NW top for intermediate Ga flux. Using High Resolution Electron Microscopy of reactive plasma etching (RIE) NWs, it was found that NWs obtained with an optimal combination of inductive (ICP) and capacitive (RF) plasma are free of extended structural defects. The PL efficiency is strongly increased in plasma etched NWs. However, plasma-induced point defects have to be taken into account for explaining the changes of the PL spectra. Less plasma-induced degradation is observed for high ICP/RF power ratios.
SiGe nanowires of different Ge atomic fractions up to 15% were grown and ex-situ n-type doped by diffusion from a solid source in contact with the sample. The phenomenon of dielectrophoresis was used to locate single nanowires between pairs of electrodes in order to carry out electrical measurements. The measured resistance of the as-grown nanowires is very high, but it decreases more than three orders of magnitude upon doping, indicating that the doping procedure used has been effective.
Silicon and Germanium nanowires (NWs) have shown a strong ability to enhance both the absorption and scattering of light. Tailoring the optical properties of Si or Ge NWs can be obtained by adjusting the nanowire diameter. Another parameter that can be used is the chemical composition of silicon-germanium (Si1-xGex-NWs) alloys. In this work, we perform a numerical study on the optical properties of single Si1-xGex-NWs based on the Lorenz-Mie theory. The effects of Ge composition, light polarization and angle of incidence on the nanowire optical properties are investigated.
The use of semiconductor nanowires as new material building blocks for developing original devices is conditioned by the controllability of their growth. An important challenge is to form nanowires which include heterostructures of predictable dimensions. This objective requires a precise knowledge of the growth kinetics which appears much more complex for nanowires than for standard two-dimensional layers. Here, we present a method which provides detailed information on nanowire formation. The method is implemented with InP1-xAsx nanowires grown by Au-catalyzed molecular beam epitaxy. Controlled and periodic modulations of the incident vapor phase are generated. Due to these modulations, the nanowires show small and short oscillations of composition along their growth axis. These oscillations furnish a time scale which is recorded in the nanowire solid phase. The instantaneous growth rate and the total length of individual nanowires at any time of the growth are accessible. Moreover, the distribution of the oscillation lengths contains the nucleation statistics. This statistics is shown to be strongly sub-Poissonian, which indicates that some regulation mechanism operates. The rapid depletion of group V atoms in the catalyst drop which follows the growth of each ML could explain the self-regulation of nucleation events.
Metal-assisted chemical etching is a simple and low-cost silicon nanowire fabrication method which allows control of nanowire diameter, length, shape and orientation. In this work, we fabricated well-ordered silicon nanowire array by patterning gold thin film by nanosphere lithography and etching single crystalline silicon wafer by metal-assisted chemical etching technique. We investigated relation between etched solution concentration and nanowire morphology, wafer crystal orientation, etching rate. This well-ordered silicon nanowires arrays have the potential applications in many fields but especially next generation energy related applications from solar cells to lithium-ion batteries.