To send content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about sending content to .
To send content items to your Kindle, first ensure firstname.lastname@example.org
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
We aimed to describe the clinical features in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases. We studied 134 critically ill COVID-19 cases from 30 December 2019 to 20 February 2020 in an intensive care unit (ICU) at Wuhan Jinyintan Hospital. Demographics, underlying diseases, therapy strategies and test results were collected and analysed from patients on admission, admission to the ICU and 48 h before death. The non-survivors were older (65.46 (s.d. 9.74) vs. 46.45 (s.d. 11.09)) and were more likely to have underlying diseases. The blood group distribution of the COVID-19 cases differed from that of the Han population in Wuhan, with type A being 43.85%; type B, 26.92%; type AB, 10% and type O, 19.23%. Non-survivors tend to develop more severe lymphopaenia, with higher C-reactive protein, interleukin-6, procalcitonin, D-dimer levels and gradually increased with time. The clinical manifestations were non-specific. Compared with survivors, non-survivors more likely to have organ function injury, and to receive mechanical ventilation, either invasively or noninvasively. Multiple organ failure and secondary bacterial infection in the later period is worthy of attention.
Neuroimaging characteristics have demonstrated disrupted functional organization in schizophrenia (SZ), involving large-scale networks within grey matter (GM). However, previous studies have ignored the role of white matter (WM) in supporting brain function.
Using resting-state functional MRI and graph theoretical approaches, we investigated global topological disruptions of large-scale WM and GM networks in 93 SZ patients and 122 controls. Six global properties [clustering coefficient (Cp), shortest path length (Lp), local efficiency (Eloc), small-worldness (σ), hierarchy (β) and synchronization (S) and three nodal metrics [nodal degree (Knodal), nodal efficiency (Enodal) and nodal betweenness (Bnodal)] were utilized to quantify the topological organization in both WM and GM networks.
At the network level, both WM and GM networks exhibited reductions in Eloc, Cp and S in SZ. The SZ group showed reduced σ and β only for the WM network. Furthermore, the Cp, Eloc and S of the WM network were negatively correlated with negative symptoms in SZ. At the nodal level, the SZ showed nodal disturbances in the corpus callosum, optic radiation, posterior corona radiata and tempo-occipital WM tracts. For GM, the SZ manifested increased nodal centralities in frontoparietal regions and decreased nodal centralities in temporal regions.
These findings provide the first evidence for abnormal global topological properties in SZ from the perspective of a substantial whole brain, including GM and WM. Nodal centralities enhance GM areas, along with a reduction in adjacent WM, suggest that WM functional alterations may be compensated for adjacent GM impairments in SZ.
During previous pandemic outbreaks, medical staff have reported high levels of psychological distress. The aim of the current study was to report a snapshot of the psychological impact of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and its correlated factors on medical staff in Guangdong, China.
On the 2nd and 3rd February 2020, soon after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, we surveyed medical staff at four hospitals in Guangdong, China, to collect demographic characteristics, Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS), Perceived Stress Scale (PSS-14), and Insomnia Severity Index (ISI) scores.
Complete responses were received from 1045 medical staff. Respondents were divided into high- and low-risk groups according to their working environment of contacting with potential or confirmed COVID-19 cases. The proportion of staff with anxiety (55.4% v. 43.0%, p < 0.001) or depression (43.6% v. 36.8%, p = 0.028) was significantly higher in the high-risk group than the low-risk group. The percentage of staff with severe anxiety was similar in the two groups. Doctors were more susceptible to moderate-to-severe depressive symptoms. The high-risk group had higher levels of clinical insomnia (13.5% v. 8.5%, p = 0.011) and were more likely to be in the upper quartile for stress symptoms (24.7% v. 19.3%, p = 0.037) than the low-risk group. Additionally, work experience negatively correlated with insomnia symptoms.
It is important for hospitals and authorities to protect both the physical and psychological health of medical staff during times of pandemic, even those with a low exposure risk.
Exosomes derived from hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) cells are nanovesicles and are involved in the occurrence and development of HCC, they also serve as important carriers and drug targets of nanodrug delivery systems. The external shape and internal structure of exosomes are important indexes of identification, and isolated intact morphology is crucial to biological function integrity. However, given their susceptibility to various influencing factors, the external shape and internal structure of exosomes derived from HCC cells remain incompletely studied. In this study, exosomes purified from HCC cells were isolated at different centrifugation speeds and examined via multiple electron microscopy (EM) techniques. The results demonstrate that exosomes possess a nearly spherical shape and bilipid membranous vesicle with a concave cavity structure containing electron-dense and coated vesicles, suggesting the possible existence of subpopulations of exosomes with specific functions. The exosomes isolated at ultracentrifugation (UC) speed (≥110,000×g) presented irregular and diverse external morphologies, indicating the effect on the integrity of the exosomes. Transforming growth factor signaling bioactive substances (TGF-β1, S100A8, and S100A9) can be found in exosomes by performing Western blotting, showing that the internal content is associated with metastasis of HCC. These findings show that EMelectron microscopy and UC speed can affect exosome characteristics, including external shape, internal structure, and content of bioactive substances. The electron-dense and coated vesicles that had been discovered in exosomes might become new additional morphological features, which could help to improve the interpretation of experimental results and widen our understanding of exosome morphology.
Health system reform is considered a tough issue worldwide. Great efforts have been made toward health system building and strengthening. However, it is still unclear which health system is appropriate for different countries. This study aimed to systematically compare the characteristics of the establishment periods between eighty-eight counties of National Health Service (NHS) and Social Health Insurance (SHI).
Forty-eight NHS countries and forty SHI countries with data availability were selected. The establishment years of current health systems and other eighteen indicators in economics, society, population and health during establishment periods were collected. Comparison between NHS and SHI was conducted by descriptive analysis of every indicator.
Most NHS countries were established during the cold war, while SHI had been set up since the cold war ended. The median of gross domestic product (GDP) per capita, urbanization rate and aging rate of SHI were USD 1535 in current dollars, 58.2 percent and 9.8 percent, respectively; compared with USD 1387, 41.2 percent and 4.7 percent, respectively of NHS. NHS countries had a smaller total population, lower mortality rate and elderly dependency ratio, while the birth rate and children's dependency ratio were higher. SHI countries showed a higher life expectancy and lower mortality rate in infants and children. NHS countries spent less in total health expenditure and a lower proportion of GDP. The median health expenditure per capita of SHI and NHS were USD 188 and USD 131 in current dollars, respectively. There was little difference among maternal mortality rates, and public and private health expenditure proportions.
NHS and SHI countries had different characteristics during the health system establishment periods. NHS was established earlier than SHI overall, so that SHI revealed higher levels in economic and social development. Health outcomes of NHS countries were slightly lower than SHI ones, while health expenditure was more in SHI countries. Specific social, economic, demographic and health conditions should be considered when countries are building their own health systems.
It is well known that the energy for solar eruptions comes from magnetic fields in solar active regions. Magnetic energy storage and dissipation are regarded as important physical processes in the solar corona. With incomplete theoretical modeling for eruptions in the solar atmosphere, activity forecasting is mainly supported with statistical models. Solar observations with high temporal and spatial resolution continuously from space well describe the evolution of activities in the solar atmosphere, and combined with three dimensional reconstruction of solar magnetic fields, makes numerical short-term (within hours to days) solar activity forecasting possible. In the current report, we propose the erupting frequency and main attack direction of solar eruptions as new forecasts and present the prospects for numerical short-term solar activity forecasting based on the magnetic topological framework in solar active regions.
Water deficit is an environmental factor that constrains crops to express their ecophysiological potential and causes crop yield reduction. Eruca vesicaria has been reported to be one of the most drought-tolerant species in Cruciferae. In this study, polyethylene glycol-simulated drought tolerance was evaluated in one line of Brassica carinata, one line of Brassica napus and 249 Eruca lines based on the principal component analysis (PCA) and unweighted pair-group arithmetic average (UPGMA) cluster analysis. The PCA based on eight drought tolerance indices indicated that the first three components accounted for 85.46% of the total variation, with principal component (PC) 1 accounting for 43.89%, PC2 for 27.85% and PC3 for 13.73% of the total variation. The UPGMA cluster analysis indicated that B. napus cultivar Zhongshuang 9 and Eruca lines could be clustered into five major groups, with group 1 being, in general, drought sensitive, group 2 being slightly–medium drought tolerant, group 3 being drought tolerant, group 4 being highly drought sensitive and group 5 being highly drought tolerant. B. carinata cultivar XB1, as an outstander, showed high drought sensitivity. The UPGMA cluster dendrogram provides a good representation of the similarity matrix (r= 0.68). The drought-tolerant Eruca materials obtained in this study will be valuable for genetic improvement not only in Eruca itself, but also in Brassica crops since they are drought-tolerant lines from a drought-tolerant species.
The aim of this study was to evaluate the therapeutic effects of osteopontin neutralization treatment on schistosome-induced liver injury in BALB/C mice. We randomly divided 100 BALB/C mice into groups A, B, C, D and group E. Mice in all groups except group A were abdominally infected with schistosomal cercariae to induce a schistosomal hepatopathological model. Mice in group C, D and group E were respectively administered with praziquantel, praziquantel plus colchicine and praziquantel plus neutralizing osteopontin antibody. We extracted mouse liver tissues at 3 and 9 weeks after the ‘stool-eggs-positive’ day, observed liver histopathological changes by haematoxylin-eosin and Masson trichrome staining and detected the expression of osteopontin, alpha-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA) and transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-β1) by immunohistochemistry, RT-PCR and Western blot. We found that praziquantel plus neutralizing osteopontin antibody treatment significantly decreased the granuloma dimension, the percentage of collagen and the expression of osteopontin, α-SMA and TGF-β1 compared to praziquantel plus colchicine treatment in both the acute and chronic stage of schistosomal liver damage (P<0·05). So we believe that the combined regimen of osteopontin immunoneutralization and anti-helminthic treatment can reduce the granulomatous response and liver fibrosis during the schistosomal hepatopathologic course.
This study describes the fabrication of hybrid micro- and nanostructures of semiconductor nanocrystals arranged in microscopic lines inside of a borosilicate glass doped with CdSxSe1-x. This was performed using a two step process of (1) ultrafast laser modification and (2) heat treatment. The glass was photomodified using focused sub-picosecond infra-red pulses with 1 MHz repetition rate to create linear domains with local compositional variations. Heat treating the sample at temperatures near glass transition preferentially precipitated semiconductor in the modified regions, as evidenced by confocal fluorescence microscopy. The optical properties of the precipitated nanocrystals varied with heat treatment duration.
Genetic diversity and genetic variation of 240 adult plants of four tea populations in Hunan – Camellia sinensis var. sinensis, C. sinensis var. assamica cv. Duntsa, C. ptilophylla and C. sinensis var. assamica cv. Jianghua – were studied by rapid amplification of polymorphic DNA (RAPD) markers. The results showed 226 loci using 21 random primers (10 bp), of which 201 (88.9%) were polymorphic. The genetic diversity analysis indicated that Shannon's index was 0.43; 74.7% of which was within-population genetic diversity while 25.3% was among-population variation. The gene diversity indexes of total populations (HT), within populations (HS) and among populations (HST) were, respectively, 0.37, 0.28 and 0.09. The coefficient of gene differentiation (GST) among populations was 0.23, indicating a 76.7% variation within populations and 23.3% among populations. These results displayed a rich within-population genetic variation, as in Shannon's diversity index. Interpopulation gene flow (Nm) was 0.74, which indicates the limited genetic exchange between populations.
The S-layer protein CTC surface display system of Bacillus thuringiensis was used to test the possibility of displaying H5N1 Avian influenza virus (AIV) haemagglutinin HA1 on the cell surface of B. thuringiensis. Two recombinant plasmids, pCTC-HA1P and pCSHA1P, were constructed by replacing the central part below the surface anchor sequence slh of S-layer protein gene ctc with part ha1 gene (ha1p). pCTC-HA1P harboured the fusion gene ctc-ha1p and pCSHA1P the fusion gene csa-ctc-ha1p, csa representing the csaAB operon (very important in anchoring S-layer protein on the bacterial cell surface). Two recombinant B. thuringiensis strains were constructed by electrotransferring recombinant plasmids to B. thuringiensis plasmid-free derivative strain BMB171. Strains obtained were CH (bearing pCSHA1P) and BCCH (bearing pCTC-HA1P as well as the csaAB operon-carrying plasmid pMIL-CSA). The vegetative cells of CH and BCCH were used as antigens in haemagglutination (HA) and haemagglutination inhibition (HI) assays. HA assay showed recombinant HA1 proteins successfully displayed on the cell surface of CH and BCCH. HI assay showed that these recombinant HA1 proteins were specific to standard positive HI (haemagglutination inhibition test) serum of subtype H5 AIV. After immunization of mice with vegetative cells, both CH and BCCH elicited a humoral response to HA1 and exhibited immunogenicity as indicated by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). ELISA also showed that CH exhibited a higher immunogenicity than BCCH. The strategy developed in this study suggests the possibility of generating a heat-stable and oral veterinary vaccine against AIV with the B. thuringiensis S-layer protein CTC surface display system.
To rapidly establish a temporary isolation ward to handle an unexpected sudden outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and to evaluate the implementation of exposure control measures by healthcare workers (HCWs) for SARS patients.
Rapid creation of 60 relatively negative pressure isolation rooms for 196 suspected SARS patients transferred from 19 hospitals and daily temperature recordings of 180 volunteer HCWs from 6 medical centers.
A military hospital.
Of the 196 patients, 34 (17.3%) met the World Health Organization criteria for probable SARS with positive results of serologic testing for SARS-associated coronavirus (SARS-CoV), reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) from nasopharyngeal or throat swabs for SARS-CoV, or both. Seventy-four patients had suspected SARS based on unprotected exposure to SARS patients; three of them had positive results on RT-PCR but negative serologic results. The remaining 88 patients did not meet the criteria for a probable or suspected SARS diagnosis. Of the 34 patients with probable SARS, 13 were transferred to medical centers to receive mechanical ventilation due to rapid deterioration of chest x-ray results, and three patients died of SARS despite intensive therapy in medical centers. During the study period, one nurse developed probable SARS due to violation of infection control measures, but there was no evidence of cross-transmission to other HCWs.
Despite the use of full personal protection equipment, the facility failed to totally prevent exposures of HCWs to SARS but minimized the risk of nosocomial transmission. Better training and improvements in infection control infrastructure may limit the impact of SARS.
The Chinese giant salamander Andrias davidianus is the largest living amphibian. Most wild populations are threatened and some are already extinct. The Chinese government has declared the species a Class II Protected Species, and it is listed as Critically Endangered in the Chinese Red Book of Amphibians and Reptiles and as Data Deficient on the IUCN Red List. Populations of the species have declined sharply in both range and number since the 1950s because of habitat loss and fragmentation, and hunting for the commercial luxury food trade. Remaining populations appear to be distributed in 12 areas across 17 provinces in the mountainous areas of the middle Yangtze, Yellow and Pearl Rivers. Since the 1980s, 14 nature reserves, with a total area of more than 355,000 ha, have been established for the conservation of the Chinese giant salamander. We carried out habitat and questionnaire surveys for the species in 13 locations, and based on the results and on the little amount of published information, most of it in Chinese, we assess the current status of the species and make recommendations for its conservation management. Conservation of the Chinese giant salamander should be given a high priority and considered an important part of wetland management.
Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this to your organisation's collection.