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The pathogenesis of congenital diaphragmatic hernia (CDH) is largely unknown; however, vitamin A seems to play a role in diaphragmatic development. Previous, case-control studies reported that maternal dietary vitamin A intake was inversely associated with the risk of CDH. To our knowledge, however, there is no prospective evidence regarding this association. Our aim was to examine whether maternal intake of vitamin A was associated with CDH occurrence. Baseline data, from the Japan nationwide birth cohort study (2011-2014), on 89,658 mothers (mean age at delivery = 31·2 years) who delivered singleton live births, were analysed. We assessed dietary habits using a food-frequency questionnaire focused on the first trimester, and estimated the daily intakes of total vitamin A (retinol activity equivalents), retinol, provitamin A carotenoids, and vegetables. The occurrence of CDH was ascertained from medical records. A total of 40 cases of CDH were documented. The adjusted odds ratio (OR) of CDH occurrence for the high total vitamin A intake category (median = 468 μg/day) was 0·6 (95% confidence interval (CI) = 0·3, 1·2) with reference to the low intake category (230 μg/day). When we restricted to mothers with a pre-pregnancy body mass index of 18·5 to 24·9 kg/m2, vitamin A intake was inversely associated with the risk of their children being born with CDH (OR = 0·5, 95% CI = 0·2, 1·0). Even given the limited number of cases in the study, our findings provide additional evidence to link vitamin A with CDH.
Accurate measurement of the lattice misfit between the γ and γ phases in Ni-base single crystal superalloys at high temperatures has successfully been achieved using a parallel beam mode X-ray diffractometer with a high temperature specimen stage. The superalloys have γ' precipitates, an ordered FCC structure based on Ni3Al, in a γ-matrix having a disordered FCC structure (LI2). The parallel beam mode, the optics of which is made from a Ge (111) channel cut crystal, generates a superior monochromatic and parallel CuKα1 beam, which makes it possible to resolve a cluster peak in Ni-base superalloys into individual γ and γ ‘ peaks. This peak separation was almost impossible using the CuKα1+2 doublet beam from the standard type para-focusing mode, due to the very small difference in lattice parameters between the two phases.
A new type of scanning X-ray diffracto-microscope (SXDM) / X-ray powder diffractometer (XPD) which uses a converged incident beam, was designed, manufactured, and some of its basic characteristics were examined. The optical system consists of asymmetric reflection type curved crystal monochromators for both incident and reflection beams, a detector (FSPC, X-ray film, IP, nuclear plate), a translation mechanism for the specimen and also for the detector.
Current evidence suggests that the aetiology of congenital gastrointestinal (GI) tract atresia is multifactorial, and not based solely on genetic factors. However, there are no established modifiable risk factors for congenital GI tract atresia. We used data from a Japanese nationwide birth cohort study launched in 2011, and examined whether fish consumption in early pregnancy was associated with congenital GI tract atresia. We analysed data of 89 495 women (mean age at delivery=31·2 years) who delivered singleton live births without chromosomal anomalies. Based on the results of the FFQ, we estimated the daily intake of fish and n-3 PUFA consumption in early pregnancy. We defined a composite outcome (oesophageal atresia, duodenal atresia, jejunoileal atresia and/or anorectal malformation) as congenital GI tract atresia. In this population, median fish intake was 31·9 g/d, and seventy-four cases of congenital GI tract atresia were identified. Fish consumption in early pregnancy was inversely associated with the composite outcome (multivariable-adjusted OR for the high v. low consumption category=0·5, 95 % CI 0·3, 1·0). For all the specific types of atresia, decreased OR were observed in the high consumption category, although not statistically significant. Reduced atresia occurrence was observed even beyond the US Food and Drug Administration’s recommended consumption of no more than 340 g/week. Also, n-3 PUFA-rich fish and n-3 PUFA consumptions tended to be inversely associated with atresia. Fish consumption in early pregnancy may be a preventive factor for congenital GI tract atresia.
Wernicke encephalopathy (WE) is a neuropsychiatric disorder caused by thiamine deficiency. It is recognized in various stages of the cancer trajectory but has not previously been recognized during nivolumab treatment.
From a series of WE patients with cancer, we report a lung cancer patient who developed WE during treatment with nivolumab.
A 78-year-old woman with lung cancer was referred to our psycho-oncology clinic because of depressed mood. Psychiatric examination revealed disorientation to time, date, and place, which had not been recognized 1 month previously. Her symptoms fulfilled the diagnostic criteria for delirium. No laboratory findings or drugs explaining her delirium were identified. WE was suspected as she experienced a loss of appetite lasting 4 weeks. This diagnosis was supported by abnormal serum thiamine and the disappearance of delirium after intravenous thiamine administration.
Significance of results
We found WE in an advanced lung cancer patient receiving treatment with nivolumab. Further study revealed the association between nivolumab and thiamine deficiency. Oncologists should consider thiamine deficiency when a patient experiences a loss of appetite of more than 2 weeks regardless of the presence or absence of delirium.
We aimed to elucidate the accuracy and optimal cut-off point of the self-diagnosis of influenza and the associated clinical symptoms of children by their guardians, compared with those of the rapid influenza diagnostic test (RIDT).
Seasonal influenza is a common outpatient problem during the winter season. A paediatric influenza epidemic has socio-economic impacts like temporary school closure, school event cancellations, and unscheduled work absences among parents. Hence, early identification and assessment of influenza to prevent its spread is important from a societal perspective.
We performed a cross-sectional observational study in a rural clinic in Japan every winter season from December 2013 to March 2016. We retrospectively extracted information from the medical records and pre-examination checklists of 24 patients aged <12 years (mean age, 5.4 years; men, 54.2%). The data extracted from the medical records and pre-examination checklist included the baseline characteristics (age, sex and past medical history of influenza), clinical signs and symptoms, diagnosis by guardians (%) and RIDT results.
The optimal cut-off point of the self-diagnosis of influenza by guardians was 80%, with a sensitivity and specificity of 63.6% (95% confidence interval: 30.8–89.1) and 92.3% (64.0–99.8). At a 50% cut-off point, the sensitivity and specificity were 90.9% (58.7–99.8) and 53.8% (25.1−80.8). The accuracy of feeling severely sick, as estimated by the guardians showed a sensitivity and specificity of 90.9% (58.7–99.8) and 69.2% (38.6–90.9). Our study indicates that the diagnosis of seasonal influenza by guardians to their children would be useful in the establishment of both confirmatory diagnoses when it has high probability above the optimal cut-off point (80%), and exclusion diagnosis when it has low probability (50%). Not feeling severely sick, estimated by the guardians might be a useful indicator for the exclusion of paediatric influenza.
In this proceeding paper, we introduce the recent results of Galactic maser astrometry by mainly focusing on those obtained with Japanese VLBI array VERA. So far we have obtained parallaxes for 86 sources including preliminary results, and combination with the data obtained with VLBA/BeSSeL provides astrometric results for 159 sources. With these most updated results we conduct preliminary determinations of Galactic fundamental parameters, obtaining R0 = 8.16 ± 0.26 kpc and Θ0 = 237 ± 8 km/s. We also derive the rotation curve of the Milky Way Galaxy and confirm the previous results that the rotation curve is fairly flat between 5 kpc and 16 kpc, while a remarkable deviation is seen toward the Galactic center region. In addition to the results on the Galactic structure, we also present brief overviews on other science topics related to masers conducted with VERA, and also discuss the future prospect of the project.
We have detected [C I] 3P1–3P0 emissions in the gaseous debris disks of 49 Ceti and β Pictoris with the 10 m telescope of the Atacama Submillimeter Telescope Experiment, which is the first detection of such emissions. The line profiles of [C I] are found to resemble those of CO(J=3–2) observed with the same telescope and the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array. This result suggests that atomic carbon (C) coexists with CO in the debris disks, and is likely formed by the photodissociation of CO. Assuming an optically thin [C I] emission with the excitation temperature ranging from 30 to 100 K, the column density of C is evaluated to be (2.2 ± 0.2) × 1017 and (2.5 ± 0.7) × 1016 cm−2 for 49 Ceti and β Pictoris, respectively. The C/CO column density ratio is thus derived to be 54 ± 19 and 69 ± 42 for 49 Ceti and β Pictoris, respectively. These ratios are higher than those of molecular clouds and diffuse clouds by an order of magnitude. The unusually high ratios of C to CO are likely attributed to a lack of H2 molecules needed to reproduce CO molecules efficiently from C. This result implies a small number of H2 molecules in the gas disk; i.e., there is an appreciable contribution of secondary gas from dust grains.
We formulate and conduct the time-integration of time evolution equation for the giant molecular cloud mass function (GMCMF) including the cloud-cloud collision (CCC) effect. Our results show that the CCC effect is only limited in the massive-end of the GMCMF and indicate that future high resolution and sensitivity radio observations may constrain giant molecular cloud (GMC) timescales by observing the GMCMF slope in the lower mass regime.
We propose a new method to verify that a higher-order, tree-processing functional program conforms to an input/output specification. Our method reduces the verification problem to multiple verification problems for higher-order multi-tree transducers, which are then transformed into higher-order recursion schemes and model-checked. Unlike previous methods, our new method can deal with arbitrary higher-order functional programs manipulating algebraic data structures, as long as certain invariants on intermediate data structures are provided by a programmer. We have proved the soundness of the method and implemented a prototype verifier.
We consider a two-dimensional reflecting random walk on the non-negative integer quadrant. It is assumed that this reflecting random walk has skip-free transitions. We are concerned with its time-reversed process assuming that the stationary distribution exists. In general, the time-reversed process may not be a reflecting random walk. In this paper, we derive necessary and sufficient conditions for the time-reversed process also to be a reflecting random walk. These conditions are different from but closely related to the product form of the stationary distribution.
The 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake caused major disruptions in the provision of health care, including that for patients with sleep-disordered breathing (SDB) using a nasal continuous positive airway pressure (nCPAP) device. This study investigated the ability of SDB patients to continue using the nCPAP device in the weeks immediately following the earthquake, whether inability to use the nCPAP device led to symptom relapse, and measures that should be taken to prevent disruptions in nCPAP therapy during future disasters.
If nCPAP devices cannot be used during disasters, SDB patients’ health will be affected negatively.
Within 14 days of the disaster, 1,047 SDB patients completed a questionnaire that collected data regarding ability to use, duration of inability to use, and reasons for inability to use the nCPAP device; symptom relapse while unable to use the nCPAP device; ability to use the nCPAP device use at evacuation sites; and recommendations for improvement of the nCPAP device.
Of the 1,047 patients, 966 (92.3%) had been unable to use the nCPAP device in the days immediately following the earthquake. The most common reason for inability to use the nCPAP device was power failure, followed by anxiety about sleeping at night due to fear of aftershocks, involvement in disaster-relief activities, loss of the nasal CPAP device, and fear of being unable to wake up in case of an emergency. Among the 966 patients, 242 (25.1%) had experienced relapse of symptoms, the most common of which was excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS), followed by insomnia, headache, irritability, and chest pain.
Developing strategies for the continuation of nCPAP therapy during disasters is important for providing healthy sleeping environments for SDB patients in emergency situations.
MitoF, NishijimaT, SakuraiS, KizawaT, HosokawaK, TakahashiS, SuwabeA, AkasakaH, KobayashiS. Effects of CPAP Treatment Interruption Due to Disasters: Patients with Sleep-disordered Breathing in the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Area. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2013;28(6):547-555.
Crystal structure change with an applied electric field was investigated by Raman spectroscopy and X-ray diffraction (XRD) for the 1 μm-thick (100)/(001) one-axis oriented tetragonal Pb(Zr0.3Ti0.7)O3 films prepared on Pt-covered (100) Si substrates by chemical solution deposition technique. As-deposited films were under the strained condition in good agreement with the estimation from the thermal strain applied under the cooling process after the deposition from the Curie temperature to the room temperature. This strain was ascertained to be relaxed by an applied electric field in accompanying with the dramatic increase of the volume fraction of (001) orientation. These results demonstrate the importance of the crystal structure measurement not only as-deposited films, but also after applied electric field, such as after poling.
We present a distance measurement to the semi-regular variable star RX Bootis (RX Boo). Using the VLBI Exploration of Radio Astrometry (VERA) telescope, we conducted astrometric observations of a water maser spot associated with RX Boo, as well as of the continuum reference source J1419+2706. Based on monitoring observations covering a full year, the annual parallax of RX Boo was measured at 7.31 ± 0.50 mas, corresponding to a distance of 136+10−9 pc. This distance uncertainty is smaller by a factor of two than those previously published, allowing us to determine the object's stellar properties more accurately. Using our distance, we can determine the absolute magnitude and discuss more precisely the locus of RX Boo on the period–luminosity (PL) relation. RX Boo exhibits two simultaneous pulsation periods and is located on the fundamental and first overtone Mira sequences of the PL relation. In addition, we calculated the radius and mass of the star.
In 2011 February, a burst of the 22 GHz H2O maser in Orion KL was reported. In order to identify the bursting maser features, we have been carrying out observations of the 22 GHz H2O maser in Orion KL with VERA, a Japanese VLBI network dedicated for astrometry. The bursting maser turns out to consist of two spatially different features at 7.58 and 6.95 km s−1. We determine their absolute positions and find that they are coincident with the shocked molecular gas called the Orion Compact Ridge. We tentatively detect the absolute proper motions of the bursting features toward the southwest direction, perpendicular to the elongation of the maser features. It is most likely that the outflow from the radio source I or another young stellar object interacting with Compact Ridge is a possible origin of the H2O maser burst. We will also carry out observations with ALMA in the cycle 0 period to monitor the submillimeter H2O maser lines in the Orion Compact Ridge region. These follow-up observations will provide novel information on the physical and chemical properties of the mastering region.
Plasmodium falciparum has for some time been developing resistance against known anti-malarial drugs, and therefore a new drug is urgently needed. Selenium (Se), an essential trace element, in the form of inorganic Se, selenite (SeO32−), has been reported to have an anti-plasmodial effect, but its mechanism is still unclear. In the present study, we evaluated the anti-plasmodial effect of several Se compounds against P. falciparum in vitro. The anti-plasmodial effect of several Se compounds was analysed and their apoptosis-inducing activity was evaluated by morphological observation, DNA fragmentation assay and mitochondrial function analysis. SeO32−, methylseleninic acid, selenomethionine and selenocystine have anti-plasmodial effects with 50% inhibition concentration at 9, 10, 45, and 65 μm, respectively, while selenate and methylselenocysteine up to 100 μm have no effect on parasite growth. The effective Se compounds caused the parasites to become shrunken and pyknotic and significantly increased mitochondrial damage against P. falciparum compared to the untreated control. In conclusion, SeO32−, methylseleninic acid, selenomethionine and selenocystine have anti-plasmodial activities that induce apoptosis-like cell death in P. falciparum, and the anti-plasmodial effects of Se seem to be based on its chemical forms. The apoptosis-like cell-death mechanism in P. falciparum can be beneficial to respond to the growing problem of drug resistance.
Current research estimates that the proportion of the population aged 75 and older in developed countries will increase to approximately 40 percent by 2050 . This is the result of the full provision of public health, improved medical care, and adequate nutrition. People have shown a remarkable increase in median life expectancy and, in fully developed countries, life expectancy now approaches 80 years . On the other hand, no matter how much the maximum survival (life span) may be prolonged, the span will not exceed 125 years, as no one has surpassed 122 years and five months (the age of Jeanne Calment in France when she died ). Although it has been estimated that if cancer and atherosclerosis were eliminated as causes of death, about ten years would be added to the average life span, there would still be no change in the maximum life span . This may indicate that the current life span of humans has reached its plateau.
Aging is not itself a disease, but it accompanies the decline of organ and body functions and indicates a correspondingly increasing susceptibility to diseases such as infection, autoimmunity, and cancer . Recent estimates from the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) Program of the National Cancer Institute reveal that the median age of patients with cancer in the United States is around 70, and that death rates from cancer, for almost any site, increase with each additional decade of age .
This paper describes a new technique to fabricate two-dimensional microstructures assembled with nano-sized particles. The nano-sized particles attract a lot of attention because of their unique properties compared to bulk materials. Micro- and nano- structures assembled with nano-sized particles have potential applications in electronic, optical and biochemical fields. The Self-Assembled Monolayer (SAM) film patterning is one of the methods to assemble the nano-sized particles. We have proposed a new method to assemble nano-sized particles on a substrate using an electric field generated by an electrified pattern. In this study, following our methods titanium oxide (TiO2, diam.=21nm) particles were patterned on an n-type (100) silicon substrate having an oxidized layer. The particle deposition on the substrates was carried out using a colloidal suspension process and an aerosol process.