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Image stitching is important for the perception and manipulation of undersea robots. In spite of a well-developed technique, it is still challenging for undersea images because of their inevitable appearance ambiguity caused by the limited light in the undersea environment, and local disturbance caused by moving objects, ocean current, etc. To get a clean and stable background panorama in the undersea environment, this paper proposes an undersea image-stitching method by introducing graph-based registration and blending procedures. Specifically, in the registration procedure, matching the features in each undersea image pair is formulated and solved by graph matching, to incorporate the structural information between features. In the blending procedure, an energy function on the indirect graph Markov random field is proposed, which takes both image consistency and neighboring consistency into consideration. Coincidentally, both graph matching and energy minimization can be mathematically formulated by integer quadratic programming problems with different constraints; the recently proposed graduated nonconvexity and concavity procedure is used to optimize both problems. Experiments on both synthetic images and real-world undersea images witness the effectiveness of the proposed method.
Chickenpox is a common acute and highly contagious disease in childhood; moreover, there is currently no targeted treatment. Carrying out an early warning on chickenpox plays an important role in taking targeted measures in advance as well as preventing the outbreak of the disease. In recent years, the infectious disease dynamic model has been widely used in the research of various infectious diseases. The logistic differential equation model can well demonstrate the epidemic characteristics of epidemic outbreaks, gives the point at which the early epidemic rate changes from slow to fast. Therefore, our study aims to use the logistic differential equation model to explore the epidemic characteristics and early-warning time of varicella. Meanwhile, the data of varicella cases were collected from first week of 2008 to 52nd week of 2017 in Changsha. Finally, our study found that the logistic model can be well fitted with varicella data, besides the model illustrated that there are two peaks of varicella at each year in Changsha City. One is the peak in summer–autumn corresponding to the 8th–38th week; the other is in winter–spring corresponding to the time from the 38th to the seventh week next year. The ‘epidemic acceleration week’ average value of summer–autumn and winter–spring are about the 16th week (ranging from the 15th to 17th week) and 45th week (ranging from the 44th to 47th week), respectively. What is more, taking warning measures during the acceleration week, the preventive effect will be delayed; thus, we recommend intervene during recommended warning weeks which are the 15th and 44th weeks instead.
Previous neuroimaging studies demonstrated that retinal detachment (RD) subjects were associated with abnormal spontaneous brain activities; however, whether the altered interhemispheric functional connectivity (FC) occurred in RD patients remains unknown. The current study tried to explore the alternations of interhemispheric FC of the whole brain in unilateral RD patients using the voxel-mirrored homotopic connectivity (VMHC) method and their connections to clinical features. Methods: We recruited 30 patients with RD (16 males and 14 females) and 30 healthy controls (HCs) (16 males and 14 females) whose age and sex were closely matched. All subjects underwent the rs-fMRI scans. The VMHC method was applied to directly assess the hemispheres’ functional interaction. The VMHC in these brain areas, which could be used as biomarkers to differentiate RD from HC, was identified by the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analyses. The relations between these patients’ clinical features and their mean VMHC signal values in multiple brain regions were calculated by Pearson correlation analysis. Results: RD patients had significantly lower VMHC values than HCs in the bilateral occipital lobe (Brodmann areas, BA 18), bilateral superior temporal gyrus (BA 39), and bilateral cuneus (BA 19). Moreover, the mean VMHC signal values of the bilateral cuneus were in positive correlation with the duration of the RD (r = 0.446, P = 0.013). Conclusion: Our results provided an evidence of disturbed interhemispheric FC in the visual area occurred in RD patients, which might provide some useful information to understand the neural mechanism of RD patients with acute vision loss. Furthermore, the VMHC values might indicate the progress of the RD.
The contribution of this paper is to propose a novel rat-race hybrid coupler of arbitrary coupling coefficient. Traditionally, the rat-race hybrid couplers are built by various loop-alike transmission-lines of multiple quarter-wavelength, and in this paper, we approach the coupler design by using a circular substrate integrated waveguide (SIW) cavity (SIWC). The employed SIWC supports two mutually orthogonal degenerate modes, and cavity field is formed by the two modes in an arbitrary weighting ratio which defines the proposed rat-race coupler's coupling coefficient. The cavity is excited by a microstrip combined coupling slot with the microstrip along a specifically chosen direction. The energy of each degenerate mode can be solely extracted by an associated subminiature version A (SMA) whose position is carefully determined. The isolation between the coupling slots is assured by their perpendicular layout, and the isolation between the SMA probes is obtained by the orthogonality of the two degenerate modes. Experiments are conducted on the 3- and 10-dB coupling coefficient samples to verify this novel rat-race coupler design. The measurements agree well with the simulations, and circuit's good performance is observed in terms of coupling precision, isolations, and small phase imbalances.
This telescope was designed for determining the trigonometric parallaxes of faint stars. The otpical configuration is a Ritchey-Chrétien system and has only a f/10 Cassegrain focus for photographic work.
The mounting is a combination of fork and yoke frame which can reduce the flexure due to gravity. A high speed digital servo-system was adopted for controlling and driving the telescope. At present some photographs of Comet Halley have been obtained.
The 1.56m astrometric telescope (Fig. 1) is designed mainly for determining trigonometric parallaxes of faint stars.
In order to keep the design as simple as possible, the telescope has only a Ritchey-Chretien focus and will accomodate plates 200 × 200 mm. We also plan to design several pieces of auxiliary equipment such as a medium dispersion grating spectrograph, a photometer, a reducing camera, and an electrographic camera, all of which are in the second stage of engineering. The whole project consists of four parts.
The earliest fossil record of animal biomineralization occurs in the latest Ediacaran Period (c. 550 Ma). Cloudina and Sinotubulites are two important tubular taxa among these earliest skeletal fossils. The evolutionary fate of Cloudina-type fossils across the Ediacaran–Cambrian transition, however, remains poorly understood. Here we report a multi-layered tubular microfossil Feiyanella manica gen. et sp. nov. from a phosphorite interval of the lowest Cambrian Kuanchuanpu Formation, southern Shaanxi Province, South China. This newly discovered fossil is a conical tube with a ‘funnel-in-funnel’ construction, showing profound morphological similarities to Cloudina and Conotubus. On the other hand, the outer few layers, and particularly the outermost layer, of Feiyanella tubes are regularly to irregularly corrugated, a feature strikingly similar to the variably folded/wrinkled tube walls of Sinotubulites. The Feiyanella tubes additionally exhibit two orders of dichotomous branching, similar to branching structures reported occasionally in Cloudina and possibly indicative of asexual reproduction. Owing to broad similarities in tube morphology, tube wall construction and features presumably indicative of asexual reproduction, Cloudina, Conotubus, Sinotubulites and the here described Feiyanella may thus constitute a monophyletic group traversing the Ediacaran–Cambrian boundary. The tube construction and palaeoecological strategy of Feiyanella putatively indicate evolutionary continuity in morphology and palaeoecology of benthic metazoan communities across the Ediacaran–Cambrian transition.
The present study aims to evaluate the antiparasitic activity of active components from Cynanchum paniculatum against Ichthyophthirius multifiliis. The antiparasitic activities of two bioassay-guided fractionationated compounds from C. paniculatum identified as Cynatratoside-A and Cynanversicoside C, by comparing spectral data (NMR and ESI-MS) with literature values, were evaluated by in vitro assay. These showed that both could kill theronts of I. multifiliis at a concentration of 10·0 mg L−1, with the median effective concentration (EC50) values of 4·6 mg L−1 and 5·2 mg L−1 for Cynatratoside-A and Cynanversicoside C, respectively. Encysted tomonts were killed at concentrations of 8·0 mg L−1 with both compounds. In vivo experiments demonstrated that fish treated with both compounds at 15·0 mg L−1 carried significantly fewer parasites than controls (P < 0·05). There were no mortalities among treated fish group compared with 75% mortality of untreated fish. Cynatratoside-A and Cynanversicoside C are therefore potential candidate drugs for use against I. multifiliis.
In this study, the effects of HA combined with NPK fertilizer (HANPK) on root growth and leaf quality of tobacco plants were investigated in tobacco fields. Results indicated that the application of HA alone did not enhance the growth of tobacco obviously, while HANPK increased tobacco biomass by 36.9% and stimulated the growth of lateral roots significantly. The number of the second-order lateral roots was increased by 89.3% compared with the control. Furthermore, HANPK raised the ratio of root biomass in 0–20 cm soil layer over the whole soil layer and increased the proportion of fine roots over the total roots. Tobacco leaf yield, output value, and benefit of HANPK were 12.2%, 29.4% and 35.5% higher than those of the control, respectively. The above results suggest that the combined application of HA and NPK chemical fertilizer is an economical pattern for improving tobacco growth.
The chemical extraction of soil organic carbon (SOC) fractions from soils often does not produce satisfactory results for radiocarbon dating. In this study, a sequential pyrolysis technique was investigated. The soil was pyrolyzed at temperatures of 200, 400, 600, and 800 °C to partition organic carbon into pyrolytic volatile (Py-V) and pyrolytic residue (Py-R) fractions. The preliminary results show that the 14C dates of both fractions become progressively older as the pyrolysis temperature is increased. In addition, the ages of the Py-V fractions are consistently younger than the corresponding Py-R fractions extracted at the same temperature. Experimental results of known-age paleosol samples indicate that the Py-V fractions obtained between 600 and 800 °C yield the most reliable ages. This technique provides a new approach to improve the accuracy of 14C dating of loess-paleosol sequences.
In this paper, we deal with the relation between the characteristic functions of meromorphic functions that share three values CM. As applications of our main results, we shall affirmatively settle two conjectures proposed by Mues and Osgood-Yang.
In this study, the effects of Sm on the microstructure and corrosion resistance of hot-extruded AZ61 magnesium alloys were investigated by optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, and transmission electron microscopy. The results showed that uniformly dispersed Al2Sm particles with size of ∼2 μm were discovered in the hot-extruded AZ61 magnesium alloy sample modified with 1.0 wt% Sm, which promoted dynamic recrystallization grain growth during the hot-extruded process, gradually increasing the grain of the alloy as Sm content increased. The morphology of the corroded surface and the corrosion rate of the hot-extruded AZ61 magnesium alloy both were significantly improved after Sm addition. The alloy sample modified with 2.0 wt% Sm after immersion in 3.5 wt% NaCl solution for 12 h showed minimum corrosion rate value, 3.1 mg/cm2 day, which is only 3.7% of the corrosion rate of unmodified alloy (82 mg/cm2 day).
The selection of young stellar objects (YSOs) based on excess emission in the infrared is easily contaminated by post-main-sequence stars and various types of emission line stars with similar properties. We define in this paper stringent criteria for an efficient selection and classification of stellar sources with infrared excess emission based on combined Two Micron All Sky Survey (2MASS) and AKARI colors.
Few studies have explored the relationship between dietary patterns and the risk of gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM). Evidence from non-Western areas is particularly lacking. In the present study, we aimed to examine the associations between dietary patterns and the risk of GDM in a Chinese population. A total of 3063 pregnant Chinese women from an ongoing prospective cohort study were included. Data on dietary intake were collected using a FFQ at 24–27 weeks of gestation. GDM was diagnosed using a 75 g, 2 h oral glucose tolerance test. Dietary patterns were determined by principal components factor analysis. A log-binomial regression model was used to examine the associations between dietary pattern and the risk of GDM. The analysis identified four dietary patterns: vegetable pattern; protein-rich pattern; prudent pattern; sweets and seafood pattern. Multivariate analysis showed that the highest tertile of the vegetable pattern was associated with a decreased risk of GDM (relative risk (RR) 0·79, 95 % CI 0·64, 0·97), compared with the lowest tertile, whereas the highest tertile of the sweets and seafood pattern was associated with an increased risk of GDM (RR 1·23, 95 % CI 1·02, 1·49). No significant association was found for either the protein-rich or the prudent pattern. The protective effect of a high vegetable pattern score was more evident among women who had a family history of diabetes (P for interaction = 0·022). These findings suggest that the vegetable pattern was associated with a decreased risk of GDM, while the sweets and seafood pattern was associated with an increased risk of GDM. These findings may be useful in dietary counselling during pregnancy.
The laser cladding Co–Cr–W coating has coarse dendritic and network carbides, which can lead to crack and exfoliation easily, limiting the application of Co–Cr–W coating. In this work, friction stir processing (FSP) was carried out on a laser cladding Co–Cr–W alloy coating to modify its microstructure. FSP transforms the laser clad coarse dendritic grains (grain size: 2–4 μm) into nanograins (grain size: 50–200 nm) and crushes the network carbides into nanoparticles dispersed in Co-base solution. The microstructure and thickness of plastic surface layer are controllable by the condition of FSP. Moreover, a WCx reinforced Co–Cr–W thin layer was formed because the WC particles of stir tool were squeezed into the Co–Cr–W coating surface layer. More interestingly, when the FSP rotary speed was 1500 rpm, an interlocking bonding between Co–Cr–W coating and steel substrate was formed, which was favorable for the connection with substrate. The surface nanocrystallization significantly strengthened the laser clad Co–Cr–W alloy after FSP.
This study aimed to explore whether the presence of a Y chromosome azoospermia factor (AZF) microdeletion confers any adverse effect on embryonic development and clinical outcomes after intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) treatment. Fifty-seven patients with AZF microdeletion were included in the present study and 114 oligozoospermia and azoospermia patients without AZF microdeletion were recruited as controls. Both AZF and control groups were further divided into subgroups based upon the methods of semen collection: the AZF-testicular sperm extraction subgroup (AZF-TESE, n = 14), the AZF-ejaculation subgroup (AZF-EJA, n = 43), the control-TESE subgroup (n = 28) and the control-EJA subgroup (n = 86). Clinical data were analyzed in the two groups and four subgroups respectively. A retrospective case–control study was performed. A significantly lower fertilization rate (69.27 versus 75.70%, P = 0.000) and cleavage rate (89.55 versus 94.39%, P = 0.000) was found in AZF group compared with the control group. Furthermore, in AZF-TESE subgroup, the fertilization rate (67.54 versus 74.25%, P = 0.037) and cleavage rate (88.96 versus 94.79%, P = 0.022) were significantly lower than in the control-TESE subgroup; similarly, the fertilization rate (69.85 versus 75.85%, P = 0.004) and cleavage rate (89.36 versus 94.26%, P = 0.002) in AZF-EJA subgroup were significantly lower than in the control-EJA subgroup; however, the fertilization rate and cleavage rate in AZF-TESE (control-TESE) subgroup was similar to that in the AZF-EJA (control-EJA) subgroup. The other clinical outcomes were comparable between four subgroups (P > 0.05). Therefore, sperm from patients with AZF microdeletion, obtained either by ejaculation or TESE, may have lower fertilization and cleavage rates, but seem to have comparable clinical outcomes to those from patients without AZF microdeletion.
Low-temperature stress is an important limiting factor to tobacco growth in early spring of south China. In this study, a low-temperature-resistant agent (LTRA) was employed to examine its ameliorating effect on the inhibition of tobacco growth triggered by low-temperature stress. Results indicated that low-temperature stress of 12 °C for 6 days reduced root number and biomass of tobacco seedling by 27.4% and 24.1%, while treatment with LTRA could recover the inhibitory effect of low-temperature stress on tobacco growth significantly. The content of ascorbic acid and the activities of superoxide dismutase and catalase at low-temperature stress were 65.2%, 53.5% and 32.1% of those at normal temperature condition (26 °C), while the corresponding values with LTRA treatment were 89.2%, 88.9% and 74.2%, suggesting that LTRA treatment could enhance the activity of antioxidant enzyme and the synthesis of antioxidant compounds. Low-temperature stress increased the membrane permeability by 84.8%, while LTRA treatment recovered it by 77.4%. Furthermore, LTRA treatment contributed to increase chlorophyll synthesis and maintain the integrity of tobacco leaf structure. Effective component analysis indicated that the complex of ammonium calcium nitrate and glycine betaine was the main effective component of LTRA in maintaining membrane integrity. Its effective concentration was 1.0 g L−1. The above results suggested that LTRA could enhance the synthesis of chlorophyll, activate the activity of antioxidant enzyme, maintain the integrity of cell membrane, and thus elevate the tolerance of tobacco seedlings to low-temperature stress.
The present study aimed to compare the effects of a general dietary intervention and an intervention with low glycaemic load (GL) on glycaemic control, blood lipid metabolism and pregnancy outcomes in women with gestational diabetes mellitus.
Participants were randomly assigned to two groups, receiving either an individualized general dietary intervention (Control group) or an intensive low-GL intervention (Low-GL group) every two weeks, from 24–26 weeks of gestation to delivery.
The Center of Maternal Primary Care in Guangdong General Hospital, China.
Ninety-five women with gestational diabetes mellitus were enrolled from June 2008 to July 2009.
After the intervention, both groups significantly decreased their dietary intakes of energy, fat and carbohydrate. The Low-GL group had significantly lower values for GL (122 v. 136) and glycaemic index (50 v. 54) but greater dietary fibre intake (33 v. 29 g/d) than did the Control group (all P<0·01). Significantly greater decreases in fasting plasma glucose (−0·33 v. −0·02 mmol/l, P<0·01) and 2 h postprandial glucose (−2·98 v. −2·51 mmol/l, P<0·01), significantly lower increases in total cholesterol (0·12 v. 0·23 mmol/l) and TAG (0·41 v. 0·56 mmol/l) and a significantly lower decrease in HDL cholesterol (−0·01 v. −0·11 mmol/l) were also observed in the Low-GL group compared with the Control group (all P<0·05). There were no significant differences in body weight gain, birth weight or other maternal–fetal perinatal outcomes between the two groups.
The low-GL targeted dietary intervention outperformed the general dietary intervention in glycaemic control and the improvement of blood lipid levels in women with gestational diabetes mellitus.