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Both short- and long-term effects of fertilizers on crops and soils are often studied only in arid or paddy soils, whereas less is known about the long-term effects in paddy-upland rotations, particularly with multiple crops and frequent tillage in subtropical areas. Therefore, an 18-year field experiment was initialized to assess the effects of different types of fertilization (no fertilizer; chemical fertilizer (CF); and manure in combination with CF (MCF)) on yield and soil chemical and microbial properties in a crop rotation involving rice (Oryza sativa L., summer), rapeseed (Brassica campestris L., winter), tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum L., the following summer), and hairy vetch (Vicia villosa Roth, the following winter). MCF caused higher yields of rapeseed grains and tobacco leaves than CF after 3 or 4 years of implementing the experiment, while rice yields varied little between MCF and CF, with one exception in 2011. Compared with the initial soil properties, providing soil with MCF increased organic matter (OM), while the opposite trend was found with CF. Higher microbial biomasses, enzyme activities, bacterial operational taxonomic units, and richness and diversity indexes of bacterial communities were found in soils receiving MCF, implying the improvement of soil microbial properties in the paddy-upland rotation system with multiple crops and frequent tillage. The experimental soils under varying fertilization were dominated by four bacterial phyla (Proteobacteria, Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, and unclassified groups), which accounted for approximately 70% of the 16S rDNA sequences. Among the top 20 predominant bacteria, 14 were commonly found in all soil samples irrespective of which fertilizer treatment was implemented. Thus, the presence of those bacteria was stable in the soil and to some extent was influenced by fertilization. Most of them were facultative anaerobic bacteria, which can adapt to both anaerobic paddy soil and aerobic drylands. The dominant bacteria at various taxonomic levels found in soils might reflect multiple soil processes such as OM turnover, nutrient cycling, physical structure formation, and xenobiotic detoxification.
In the traditional Axiomatic Design (AD) theory, the mapping from the functional domain to the physical domain is based on the designers’ own knowledge and experience, and there is no systematical approach including the design resources provided outside the designers themselves’ access. Thus, the raw materials for the design process are largely limited, which means they can hardly support the designers’ increasingly creative and innovative conceptions. To help AD theory better support the design process, this paper proposes a computer-aided approach for the mapping from the functional domain to the physical domain within a distributed design resource environment, which consists of numerous design resources offered on the Internet by the providers widely distributed in different locations, institutes, and disciplines. To prove the feasibility of this proposed approach, a software prototype is established, and a natural leisure hotel is designed as an implementation case.
Two mathematical models under so-called intensity and structure frameworks to pricing a double defaultable interest rate swap are established. The default could happen or jump to a high probability in both fixed and floating parties on the predetermined boundaries. The models lead to a new and interesting mathematical problem. As the intensity approaches infinity in designated regions, the solutions of the intensity models converge to a solution of a structure-type model which is an initial value problem of a partial differential equation coupled with two obstacles problem in their restricted regions. According to the value of the fixed rate, three cases are discussed. The free boundary that determines the swap rate and the free boundaries that determine the earlier termination of the contract (due to counterparty’s default) are analysed.
Farmer training is important to improve weed management practices in tea cultivation. To explore the group characteristics of tea growers, we interviewed 354 growers in Guizhou Province, China. Sixty-one percent of the respondents planted tea for companies or cooperative groups, and 56% managed tea gardens larger than 10 ha. Self-employed tea growers tended to be older and smallholders, and to apply herbicides and conduct weed control less frequently (P < 0.05). Approximately 87% of the respondents conducted weed control two to four times yr−1, 83% spent between $200 and $2,000 ha−1 yr−1 for weed control, and 42% thought weed control costs would decrease by 5 years from this study. Twenty-eight species were mentioned by the respondents as being the most serious. According to canonical correspondence analysis, latitude, altitude, being self-employed or a member of a cooperative, having training experience in tea-garden weed management, and frequency and cost of weed control in tea gardens had significant (P < 0.05) influence on the composition of most troublesome weed species listed by respondents. Among the respondents, 60% had had farmer’s training on weed management in tea gardens. Of these, a significant number (P < 0.05) tended to think weed control costs would decrease, and a nonsignificant number (P > 0.05) tended to conduct weed control more frequently and have lower weed management costs in their tea gardens.
A Pickering emulsion was prepared via synergistic stabilization of a lipase and palygorskite particles. The optimum conditions for the stabilization of the Pickering emulsion, such as the concentrations of the palygorskite particles and lipase, were explored. The morphology of emulsion droplets was examined using digital optical microscopy and polarizing optical microscopy. The palygorskite–lipase co-stabilized Pickering emulsions were investigated by determination of the adsorption rate, pH and zeta potential of the aqueous dispersion, as well as by determining the contact angle values of the lipase solution on a palygorskite disc that was immersed in toluene. The catalytic performance of the immobilized lipase in the Pickering emulsion was studied via the investigation of its thermal stability, storage stability and reusability. The immobilized lipase showed greater stability than the free lipase. The lipase immobilized by Pickering emulsion retained a high level of activity even after seven periods of recycling.
The present study investigated the effects of glutamine (GLN) pretreatment on CD4+ T cell polarisation and remote kidney injury in mice with gut-derived polymicrobial sepsis. Mice were randomly assigned to three groups: normal control fed with American Institute of Nutrition (AIN)-93G diet and two sepsis groups provided with either AIN-93G-based diet or identical components, except part of casein was replaced by GLN. Mice were given their respective diets for 2 weeks. Then, mice in the sepsis groups were performed with caecal ligation and puncture and were killed 72 h after the surgery. Blood, spleens and kidneys were collected for further examination. The results showed that sepsis resulted in decreased circulating and splenic total T lymphocyte and CD4+ T cell percentages, whereas IL-4-, and forkhead box p3 (Foxp3)-expressing CD4+ T cells percentages were up-regulated. Compared with the sepsis control group, pretreatment with GLN maintained blood T and CD4+ T cells and reduced percentages of IL-4- and Foxp3-expressing CD4+ T cells. Also, a more pronounced activation and increased anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 gene expression of splenic CD4+ T cells were observed. Concomitant with the decreased plasma IL-6, keratinocyte-derived chemokine (KC) levels, the gene expression of KC, macrophage inflammatory protein-2 and renal injury biomarker kidney injury molecule-1 (Kim-1) were down-regulated when GLN was administered. These findings suggest that antecedent of GLN administration elicit a more balanced blood T helper cell polarisation, sustained T cell populations, prevented splenic CD4+ T cell apoptosis and attenuated kidney injury at late phase of polymicrobial sepsis. GLN may have benefits in subjects at risk of abdominal infection.
This study aims to investigate the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) transmission rate in HIV serodiscordant couples, in addition to the relevant influencing factors. From January 1999 to August 2016, patients with HIV/AIDS (index cases) along with their fixed partners were registered and monitored to determine the rate of HIV transmission between couples, as well as relevant influencing factors. A total of 231 HIV-positive couples were investigated, of these, 45-negative (19.48%) partners were infected with HIV via sexual transmission prior to diagnosis of the first case detected in couples. After diagnosis, the transmission rate between spouses was 0.39 per 100 person-years (2/507.7), and the cumulative transmission rate was 1.08% (2/186), which was significantly lower than the transmission rate before diagnosis (χ2 = 35.714, P < 0.001). Among the 119 HIV/AIDS patients who received antiretroviral therapy (ART), the transmission rate was 0 (0/119), whereas the transmission rate was 2.99% (2/67) in HIV/AIDS patients who did not receive ART. In addition, HIV transmission rate in serodiscordant couples was high prior to diagnosis of the index case. However, following diagnosis, the transmission rate was reduced, and the risk of transmission in the index case with antiviral treatment was null. Therefore, a prompt intervention in HIV discordant couples with ART of index case is vital to reduce the risk of HIV transmission.
There is a large body of literature asserting that household asset holdings play a critical role in prospects of economic and social well-being. This study examines asset-poverty rates in China using the 2013 survey data from the Chinese Household Income Project (CHIP). The results indicate that asset-poverty rates in urban China were lower than those of developed countries, whereas rural and migrant households experienced more serious asset poverty than their counterparts in urban China. In addition, the asset-poverty rates were at least twice the income-poverty rates in China according to the different poverty lines used in the study. Several demographic characteristics were found associated with asset poverty. To assist the Chinese government in reaching its goal of eradicating absolute poverty by 2020 through targeted poverty alleviation, this study suggests including assets in the description and alleviation of poverty.
Primary fluid recovery from a porous medium is driven by the volumetric expansion of the in situ fluid. For production from a petroleum reservoir, primary recovery accounts for more than half of the total amount of recovered hydrocarbon. The primary recovery process is studied here at the pore scale and the macroscopic scale. The pore-scale flow is first analysed using the compressible Navier–Stokes equations and the mathematical theory for low-Mach-number flow developed by Klainerman & Majda (Commun. Pure Appl. Maths, vol. 34 (4), 1981, pp. 481–524; vol. 35 (5), 1982, pp. 629–651). An asymptotic analysis shows that the pore-scale flow is governed by the self-diffusion of the fluid and it exhibits a slip-like mass flow rate, even though the velocity satisfies the no-slip condition on the pore wall. The pore-scale density equation is then upscaled to a macroscopic diffusion equation for the density which possesses a diffusion coefficient proportional to the fluid’s kinematic viscosity. Darcy’s law is shown to be inapplicable to primary fluid recovery and it should be replaced by a new mass flux equation which depends on the porosity but not on the permeability. This is in stark contrast to the classical result and it can have important implications for hydrocarbon recovery as well as other applications.
The prevalence of sexually transmitted infection (STI) pathogens in Beijing, China, is rarely reported. In this study, 34 911 symptomatic outpatients with suspected genital infections who attended outpatient clinics in a tertiary care hospital were included to investigate the updated prevalence of Ureaplasma urealyticum (UU), Chlamydia trachomatis (CT), Neisseria gonorrhoeae (NG) and herpes simplex virus (HSV) from 1 January 2013 to 31 December 2016 in Beijing, China. Results indicated that a decrease trend (UU, CT, NG and HSV) in male and an increase trend (UU, CT and NG) in female were observed during the period. Patients aged 20–39 years old were mostly affected by these pathogens, while the prevalence in patients aged 20–29 years old was the highest, The prevalence of UU in male was significantly lower than in female (31.5% vs. 49.3%, P < 0.05), while the prevalence of NG in male was significantly higher than in female (2.5% vs. 0.8%, P < 0.05). In patients with co-infections, 60.6% of male and 71.4% of female were co-infected by UU + CT. In total, 11.9% and 88.1% of patients with HSV infections were confirmed to be infected by HSV-1 and HSV-2. This study could contribute to a better understanding of the current epidemiological features of UU, NG, CT and HSV among symptomatic patients attending an outpatient clinic in Beijing, China, and thus facilitate to develop more effective intervention, prevention and treatment of STI.
To investigate the protein-sparing effect of α-lipoic acid (LA), experimental fish (initial body weight: 18·99 (sd 1·82) g) were fed on a 0, 600 or 1200 mg/kg α-LA diet for 56 d, and hepatocytes were treated with 20 μm compound C, the inhibitor of AMP kinase α (AMPKα), treated for 30 min before α-LA treatment for 24 h. LA significantly decreased lipid content of the whole body and other tissues (P<0·05), and it also promoted protein deposition in vivo (P<0·05). Further, dietary LA significantly decreased the TAG content of serum and increased the NEFA content of serum (P<0·05); however, there were no significant differences among all groups in the hepatopancreas and muscle (P>0·05). Consistent with results from the experiment in vitro, LA activated phosphorylation of AMPKα and notably increased the protein content of adipose TAG lipase in intraperitoneal fat, hepatopancreas and muscle in vivo (P<0·05). Meanwhile, LA significantly up-regulated the mRNA expression of genes involved in fatty acid β-oxidation in the same three areas, and LA also obviously down-regulated the mRNA expression of genes involved in amino acid catabolism in muscle (P<0·05). Besides, it was observed that LA significantly activated the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) pathway in muscle of experimental fish (P<0·05). LA could promote lipolysis and fatty acid β-oxidation via increasing energy supply from lipid catabolism, and then, it could economise on the protein from energy production to increase protein deposition in grass carp. Besides, LA might directly promote protein synthesis through activating the mTOR pathway.
Dilated Cardiomyopathy is a serious heart disorder that may induce sudden cardiac death and heart failure. Significant progress has been made in understanding the molecular basis of dilated cardiomyopathy. In previous studies, mutations in more than fifty genes have been identified in dilated cardiomyopathy patients. The purpose of this study was to detect the genetic lesion in a family from the central south of China affected by severe dilated cardiomyopathy.
Whole-exome sequencing combined with cardiomyopathy-related genes list were used to analyse the mutations of the proband. Co-segregation analysis was performed by Sanger sequencing.
Results and conclusions
Two novel heterozygous mutations – Myosin Binding Protein C: p.L1014RfsX6 and Titin: p.R9793X – were identified in the proband. The deletion mutation c.3041delT/p.L1014RfsX6 caused a premature stop codon at position 1020 in exon 28 of the Myosin Binding Protein C. The nonsense mutation, c.29377 C>T/ p. R9793X, of Titin was located in the highly evolutionarily conserved domain, resulting in truncation of the Titin protein as well. Co-segregation analysis further revealed that the Myosin Binding Protein C mutation came from his mother and the Titin mutation came from his father. Both mutations are reported in dilated cardiomyopathy patients for the first time. Our study not only provides a unique example of the genes and molecular mechanisms involved in dilated cardiomyopathy but also expands the spectrum of Myosin Binding Protein C and Titin mutations and contributes to the genetic diagnosis and counselling of dilated cardiomyopathy patients.
Several epidemiological studies have investigated that Na or K intakes might be associated with the metabolic syndrome (MetS). However, little evidence has evaluated the association between Na:K ratio and the MetS. In this study, we assessed the association between the dietary Na:K ratio and the MetS. The cross-sectional study was conducted among adults aged 18 years and older in Nanjing, using a multi-stage random sampling method, which resulted in a sample size of 1993 participants. Dietary Na and K intakes were assessed by 3 consecutive days of dietary recollection combined with condiments weighing method. Health-related data were obtained by standardised questionnaires, as well as physical examinations and laboratory assessments. The prevalence rate of the MetS was 36·5 % (728/1993). After adjusting for various lifestyle and dietary factors of the MetS, participants in the highest quartile of dietary Na:K ratio were at a higher risk of developing MetS (OR=1·602; 95 % CI 1·090, 2·353) compared with those in the lowest quartile. Each 1-sd increase in dietary Na:K ratio was associated with a higher risk of prevalent MetS (OR=1·166; 95 % CI: 1·018, 1·336). Among the components of the MetS, dietary Na:K ratio was positively associated with high blood pressure (quartile 3 v. quartile 1: OR=1·656; 95 % CI 1·228, 2·256) and hypertriacylglycerolaemia (quartile 4 v. quartile1: OR=1·305; 95 % CI 1·029, 1·655) in multivariate analysis. These results revealed that higher dietary Na:K ratio significantly increased the risk of the MetS in Chinese adults. Further studies are needed to verify this association.