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Although higher circulating levels of oestrogen are related to postmenopausal breast cancer risk, limited information is available regarding effects of diet on endogenous oestrogen. Thus, we examined associations between macronutrient intakes and serum oestrogen with consideration of polymorphisms in oestrogen-metabolising genes. In this cross-sectional study, 784 naturally menopaused Japanese women aged 47–69 years were selected from participants of the Japan Multi-Institutional Collaborative Cohort Study. We documented dietary intakes, measured serum concentrations of oestrone (E1) and oestradiol (E2) and genotyped polymorphisms in oestrogen-metabolising CYP19A1 (rs4441215 and rs936306) and HSD17B1 (rs605059) genes. Trends and interactions were examined using linear regression models. In addition, we calculated the ratios of the oestrogen concentrations of the second to the highest quartiles (Q2–Q4) of dietary intake to those of the lowest quartiles (Q1). After adjustment for potential confounders, E2 was significantly associated with intake of carbohydrate and noodles; ratios of Q4 v. Q1 were 1·15 (95 % CI 1·04, 1·28) and 1·15 (95 % CI 1·04, 1·26), respectively. In contrast, E2 levels were inversely associated with intake of total energy, SFA and n-3 highly unsaturated fatty acids (n-3 HUFA); ratios of Q4 v. Q1 were 0·90 (95 % CI 0·82, 0·99), 0·89 (95 % CI 0·81, 0·98) and 0·91 (95 % CI 0·83, 1·00), respectively. In stratified analysis by polymorphisms, the rs605059 genotype of HSD17B1 significantly modified associations of E2 with intake of n-3 HUFA and fish; the associations were limited to those with the CC genotype. Macronutrient intakes were associated with serum E2 level, and these associations may be modified by HSD17B1 polymorphism in postmenopausal women.
Neuroimaging studies of depression considered as a stress-related disorder have shown uncoupling in regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) and regional cerebral metabolic rate for glucose (rCMRglc). We hypothesised that the mismatch change of rCBF and rCMRglc could be a stress-related phenomenon.
We exposed male rats to 15-min period of forced swim (FS), followed by the measurement of rCBF using N-isopropyl-4-[123I] iodoamphetamine (123I-IMP) and rCMRglc using 2-deoxy-2-[18F] fluoro-D-glucose (18F-FDG).
The uptake rate of 18F-FDG in the FS group showed a significant decrease in the prefrontal cortex (0.86±0.20%ID/g, p<0.01) and thalamus (0.77±0.17%ID/g, p<0.05) and tended to be lower in the hippocampus (0.58±0.13%ID/g) and cerebellum (0.59±0.13%ID/g) without overt alteration in the uptake rate of 123I-IMP.
The FS stress can cause mismatch change of rCBF and rCMRglc, which reflect a stress-related phenomenon.
The carrier transport properties in the emissive layer of phosphorescent polymer organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs) were observed by time-of-flight (TOF) mobility measurements. The hole and electron mobilities in carrier transport polymer without iridium complexes were measured with high levels, 3 × 10-4 cm2/Vs (hole) and 1 × 10-3 cm2/Vs (electron), of non-dispersive transport. The hole and/or electron transport properties were degraded when the iridium complexes were included in the phosphorescent polymers. The complexes acted as a trap in the phosphorescent polymers when the energy levels of the iridium complexes were lower than that of the carrier transport polymer.
Postprandial energy metabolism, including postprandial hyperglycaemia, hyperinsulinaemia and hyperlipidaemia, is related to the risk for developing obesity and CVD. In the present study, we examined the effects of polyphenols purified from coffee (coffee polyphenols (CPP)) on postprandial carbohydrate and lipid metabolism, and whole-body substrate oxidation in C57BL/6J mice. In mice that co-ingested CPP with a lipid–carbohydrate (sucrose or starch)-mixed emulsion, the respiratory quotient determined by indirect calorimetry was significantly lower than that in control mice, whereas there was no difference in VO2 (energy expenditure), indicating that CPP modulates postprandial energy partitioning. CPP also suppressed postprandial increases in plasma glucose, insulin, glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide and TAG levels. Inhibition experiments on digestive enzymes revealed that CPP inhibits maltase and sucrase, and, to a lesser extent, pancreatic lipase in a concentration-dependent manner. Among the nine kinds of polyphenols (caffeoyl quinic acids (CQA), di-CQA, feruloyl quinic acids (FQA)) contained in CPP, di-CQA showed more potent inhibitory activity than CQA or FQA on these digestive enzymes, suggesting a predominant role of di-CQA in the regulation of postprandial energy metabolism. These results suggest that CPP modulates whole-body substrate oxidation by suppressing postprandial hyperglycaemia and hyperinsulinaemia, and these effects are mediated by inhibiting digestive enzymes.
Organic thin-film transistors (OTFTs) using cross-linked olefin polymer as a gate insulator were fabricated on a plastic film. An olefin polymer layer was formed by spin-coating and baking at temperatures below 150°C. Pentacene was used as an organic semiconductor layer. The fabricated OTFTs with a short 5-μm-long channel showed a mobility of 0.1-0.2 cm2/Vs and a current ON/OFF ratio of 107. These OTFTs also exhibited good stable performance in the atmosphere. On the basis of the results, we fabricated a 5 inches OTFT-driven flexible active-matrix organic light emitting diode (AMOLED) display. The gate insulator, some metal wirings and electrodes on the OTFT backplane were formed on the plastic film by photolithography. After fabrication of the OTFT backplane, OLED layers were formed by vacuum deposition through a shadow-mask. Clear color moving images were observed on the flexible display even when it was bent.
To identify neuropsychological and psychosocial factors predictive of amnestic Mild Cognitive Impairment (aMCI) among a group of 94 nondemented older adults, we employed a novel nonlinear multivariate classification statistical method called Optimal Data Analysis (ODA) in a dataset collected annually for 3 years. Performance on measures of memory and visuomotor processing speed or symptoms of depression in year 1 predicted aMCI status by year 2. Performance on a measure of learning at year 1 predicted aMCI status at year 3. No other measures significantly predicted incidence of aMCI at years 2 and 3. Results support the utility of multiple neuropsychological and psychosocial measures in the diagnosis of aMCI, and the present model may serve as a testable hypothesis for prospective investigations of the development of aMCI. (JINS, 2010, 16, 721–729.)
Micro-texture dependence of both the mechanical and electrical properties of electroplated copper thin films was discussed experimentally considering the change of their micro texture caused by thermal history after the electroplating. Both the static and fatigue strength of the films changed drastically depending on the micro texture and it was found that there were two fatigue fracture modes in the films. One was a typical ductile intragranular fracture and the other was brittle intergranular one. The reason for the variation of the strength of the electroplated copper thin films was attributed to the variation of the average grain size and the characteristics of grain boundaries. In addition, the electrical reliability of the electroplated copper interconnections was discussed under electromigration tests. Though abrupt fracture mode due to the local fusion appeared in the as-electroplated films, the life of the interconnections was improved significantly after the annealing at temperatures high than 200°C. Typical change of the surface morphology of the film, i.e., the formation of voids and hillocks were observed on their surfaces after the annealing. This was also caused by the change of the micro texture from fine grains with porous grain boundaries to coarsened columnar grains with rigid grain boundaries. However, the stress-induced migration appeared in the annealed narrow interconnections, in particular. This was because of high tensile residual stress occurred in the film due to the constraint of the shrinkage of the films by rigid oxide around them. These results clearly indicated that the control of both the micro-texture and residual stress is indispensable for improving the reliability of the interconnectins.
We have demonstrated a 5-inch flexible color liquid crystal display (LCD) and organic light emitting display (OLED) driven by low-voltage operation organic TFT. In order to achieve high-quality and high-resolution moving images, OTFTs with high performances such as a high mobility, high ON/OFF ratio, low sub-threshold slope (SS) and low operating voltage, are developed. We fabricated pentacene-based low-voltage operation OTFT with a Ta2O5 gate dielectric prepared at a low temperature process. The resulting OTFT array showed a high mobility of 0.3-0.4 cm2/Vs, ON/OFF ratio over 107, VTH=2.7V, and low SS=0.3 V/decade. OTFTs with solution-processable materials such as fluoropolymer gate dielectric and liquid-crystalline semiconducting polymers, PBTTT, were also investigated. Electrical characteristics and stabilities of these devices will be discussed. In the final section, we will demonstrate OTFT-driven flexible displays. Both of the flexible LC device and the OLED device were successfully integrated on the pentacene-based OTFT arrays. Printing and lamination techniques were introduced to assemble the flexible LC device. Phosphorescent polymer materials, which can be patterned by ink-jet printing, were used for emitting layer of OLED. Color moving images were successively shown on the resulting 5-inch displays using an active-matrix driving technique of the OTFT at a low driving voltage of 15V.
Previous studies have reported the association between advanced paternal
age at birth and the risk of autistic-spectrum disorder in offspring,
including offspring with intellectual disability.
To test whether an association between advanced paternal age at birth is
found in offspring with high-functioning autistic-spectrum disorder (i.e.
offspring without intellectual disability).
A case–control study was conducted in Japan. The participants consisted
of individuals with full-scale IQ ⩾ 70, with a DSM–IV autistic disorder
or related diagnosis. Unrelated healthy volunteers were recruited as
controls. Parental ages were divided into tertiles (i.e. three age
classes). Odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals were estimated using
logistic regression analyses, with an adjustment for age, gender and
Eighty-four individuals with autistic-spectrum disorder but without
intellectual disability and 208 healthy controls were enrolled. Increased
paternal, but not maternal, age was associated with an elevated risk of
high-functioning autistic-spectrum disorder. A one-level advance in
paternal age class corresponded to a 1.8-fold increase in risk, after
adjustment for covariates.
Advanced paternal age is associated with an increased risk for
high-functioning autistic-spectrum disorder.
Immune dysfunction has been proposed as a mechanism for the pathophysiology
of autistic-spectrum disorders. The selectin family of adhesion molecules
plays a prominent role in immune/inflammatory responses. We determined the
serum levels of three types of soluble-form selectin (sP, sL and sE) in 15
men with high-functioning autism and 22 age-matched healthy controls by
enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Levels of sP-selectin and sL-selectin
were significantly lower in patients than in controls. Furthermore,
sP-selectin levels were negatively correlated with impaired social
development during early childhood.
The effect of strain and intrinsic defects on both electronic and structural characteristics of HfO2-x used for sub-100-nm semiconductor devices was analyzed by a quantum chemical molecular dynamics analysis. The magnitude of the band gap of HfO2 decreases by about 10% under the applied strain. The stable crystallographic structure of the monoclinic HfO2 changes to a cubic-like structure under the strain. The magnitude of the band gap of the HfO2-x decreases drastically from 5.7 eV to about 1.0 eV due to the formation of an electronic state within the band gap when an oxygen vacancy is introduced to the perfect HfO2. In the HfO2-x film, oxygen atoms near the oxygen vacancy can move drastically at temperatures higher than 800 K. Therefore, it is very important to control the chemical composition of the hafnium oxide film and to optimize the annealing condition to maintain both the high reliability and performance of the gate oxide film.
We performed a quantum chemical molecular dynamics analysis for SiO2-x structure under strain to make clear the effect of the strain and intrinsic defects on both electronic and structural characteristics of SiO2-x. The SiO2-x showed a large change of the structure during the simulation. This is mainly because that the Si-O bonds near an oxygen vacancy were broken and a free silicon monoxide molecule was generated in the SiO2-x structure. The magnitude of the band gap of the SiO2-x decreased drastically due to the formation of the free monoxide. In addition, the band gap decreased further under large tensile strain of about 10%. We can conclude therefore, that both the existence of oxygen vacancies and tensile strain in SiO2-x films deteriorate the electronic reliability of the oxide film seriously.
We have studied the early stages of GaN growth to realize the growth mechanism of GaN thin films on mis-oriented sapphire substrates which affects the surface and crystal quality of GaN thin films. As the result, it was found that the larger mis-orientation angle helps the growth of the larger grain of GaN and leads to the earlier shift of growth mode from 3D to 2D. The AFM observation of closed-coalesced GaN thin films revealed the difference in the micro-step structures by the mis-orientation angle of sapphire substrate. The result of x-ray rocking curve as a function of mis-orientation angle well matched with the microstructure of GaN surface, indicating that the larger mis-orientation angle helps the column ordering of GaN crystals.
The electrophoretic deposition of single-crystalline α-alumina particles dispersed in aqueous media was performed in a strong magnetic field of 10 T. The α-alumina particles in the stable suspension were aligned due to their anisotropic diamagnetic susceptibility and then deposited on a cathodic substrate. The orientation of the α-alumina crystallites was confirmed by x-ray diffraction of the sintered specimen.
A monoclonal antibody (6964M) was generated against the envelope component gp69/64 of Xenopus laevis eggs. On indirect immunofluorescence using this antibody, the positive reaction was seen on the surface of both vitelline envelope (VE) and coelomic envelope (CE). On immunoelectron microscopy, gp69/64 was preferentially distributed on the thick bundles forming the edge of the tunnel openings on CE, and this distribution pattern was fundamentally inherited by VE. Counting the number of immunogold particles indicated that VE has about twice as many particles as CE, with a 3-4 times higher density at the animal pole than vegetal pole. The number of sperm bound to CE was small, being approximately one-twentieth of the number of sperm bound to VE. An extremely small number of sperm (< 2 per animal hemisphere) was found to bind to VE* of activated eggs as a background. The sperm binding to CE was inhibited by pretreatment of the envelopes with 6964M or in the presence of purified gp69/64 from VE on insemination, confirming that sperm binding is mediated by gp69/64 exposed on the CE surface. In spite of at most a 2-fold increase in the amount of exposed gp69/64, the sperm binding increased about 20-fold upon CE-to-VE conversion, suggesting that the increase in the amount of exposed gp69/64 is itself insufficient to explain the increase in the number of bound sperm.
Whole-genome scans have identified Dmo1 as a major quantitative trait locus (QTL) for obesity
and dyslipidaemia in the Otsuka Long Evans Tokushima Fatty (OLETF) rat. We have produced
congenic rats for the Dmo1 locus, using marker-assisted speed congenic protocols, enforced by
selective removal of other QTL regions (QTL-marker-assisted counterselection), to efficiently
transfer chromosomal segments from non-diabetic Fischer 344 (F344) rats into the OLETF
background. In the third generation of congenic animals, we observed a substantial therapeutic
effect of the Dmo1 locus on lipid metabolism, obesity control and plasma glucose homeostasis. We
conclude that single-allele correction of an impaired genetic pathway can generate a substantial
therapeutic effect, despite the complex polygenic nature of type II diabetic syndromes.
This paper presents a prototype development of a robot arm to assist walking of elderly people. For effective use in Japanese houses, a robot arm mounted on a rail was designed. Force sensors were used to provide an easy-to-use interface. Thresholds of forces were determined to detect the user's intention to walk as well as for safety considerations. Applying a step by step motion, the arm could follow the rhythmical walking of the subject. We examined an interface method using force sensors and concluded that it can detect the user's motion at the beginning of a walk.