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Resistant starch (RS) has received increased attention due to its potential health benefits. This study was aimed to investigate the effects of dietary corn RS on immunological characteristics of broilers. A total of 320 broiler chicks were randomly allocated to five dietary treatments: normal corn–soyabean (NC) diet group, corn starch diet group, 4 %, 8 % and 12 % RS diet groups. This trial lasted for 42 d. The relative weights of spleen, thymus and bursa, the concentrations of nitric oxide (NO) and IL-4 in plasma at 21 d of age, as well as the activities of total nitric oxide synthase (TNOS) and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) in plasma at 21 and 42 d of age showed positive linear responses (P < 0·05) to the increasing dietary RS level. Meanwhile, compared with the birds from the NC group at 21 d of age, birds fed 4 % RS, 8 % RS and 12 % RS diets exhibited higher (P < 0·05) relative weight of bursa and concentrations of NO and interferon-γ in plasma. Birds fed 4 % RS and 8 % RS diets showed higher (P < 0·05) number of IgA-producing cells in the jejunum. While compared with birds from the NC group at 42 d of age, birds fed 12 % RS diet showed higher (P < 0·05) relative weight of spleen and activities of TNOS and iNOS in plasma. These findings suggested that dietary corn RS supplementation can improve immune function in broilers.
The 4.2 ka event is widely presumed to be a globally widespread aridity event and has been linked to several episodes of societal changes across the globe. Whether this climate event impacted the cultural development in south-central China remains uncertain due to a lack of regional paleorainfall records. We present here stalagmite stable carbon isotope and trace element–based reconstruction of hydroclimatic conditions from south-central China. Our data reveal a sub–millennial scale (~5.6 to 4.3 ka) drying trend in the region followed by a gradual transition to wetter conditions during the 4.2 ka event (4.3–3.9 ka). Together with the existing archaeological evidence, our data suggest that the drier climate before 4.3 ka may have promoted the Shijiahe culture, while the pluvial conditions during the 4.2 ka event may have adversely affected its settlements in low-lying areas. While military conflicts with the Wangwan III culture may have accelerated the collapse of Shijiahe culture, we suggest that the joint effects of climate and the region's topography also played important causal roles in its demise.
Using a new trademark-based product market competition measure and a novel trademark-merger data set over the period 1983–2016, we show that companies facing greater product market competition are more likely to be acquirers. We further show that postmerger, compared to their nonacquiring peers, acquirers consolidate their product offerings by discontinuing more existing product lines and developing fewer new product lines. Using a quasi-experiment based on bids withdrawn due to exogenous reasons helps us establish the causal effect of deal completion on product-market consolidation. We conclude that acquisitions create product market synergies by cutting overlapping product offerings to achieve cost efficiency.
Prospective cohort studies linking organ meat consumption and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) are limited, especially in Asian populations. This study aimed to prospectively investigate the association between organ meat consumption and risk of NAFLD in a general Chinese adult population. This prospective cohort study included a total of 15,568 adults who were free of liver disease, cardiovascular disease, and cancer at baseline. Dietary information was collected at baseline using a validated food frequency questionnaire. NAFLD was diagnosed by abdominal ultrasound after excluding other causes related to chronic liver disease. Cox proportional regression models were used to assess the association between organ meat consumption and risk of NAFLD. During a median of 4.2 years of follow-up, we identified 3,604 incident NAFLD cases. After adjusting for demographic characteristics, lifestyle factors, vegetable, fruit, soft drink, seafood, and red meat consumption, the multivariable hazard ratios (95% confidence intervals) for incident NAFLD across consumption of organ meat were 1.00 (reference) for almost never, 1.04 (0.94, 1.15) for tertile 1, 1.08 (0.99, 1.19) for tertile 2, and 1.11 (1.01, 1.22) for tertile 3, respectively (P for trend <0.05). Such association did not differ substantially in the sensitivity analysis. Our study indicates that organ meat consumption was related to a modestly higher risk of NAFLD among Chinese adults. Further investigations are needed to confirm this finding.
We investigated the drug resistance of Mycobacterium tuberculosis isolates from patients with tuberculosis (TB) and HIV, and those diagnosed with only TB in Sichuan, China. TB isolates were obtained from January 2018 to December 2020 and subjected to drug susceptibility testing (DST) to 11 anti-TB drugs and to GeneXpert MTB/RIF testing. The overall proportion of drug-resistant TB (DR-TB) isolates was 32.1% (n = 10 946). HIV testing was not universally available for outpatient TB cases, only 29.5% (3227/10 946) cases had HIV testing results. The observed proportion of multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) isolates was almost double than that of the national level, with approximately 1.5% and 0.1% of the isolates being extensively drug resistant and universally drug resistant, respectively. The proportions of resistant isolates were generally higher in 2018 and 2019 than in 2020. Furthermore, the sensitivities of GeneXpert during 2018–2020 demonstrated a downward trend (80.9, 95% confidence intervals (CI) 76.8–85.0; 80.2, 95% CI 76.4–84.1 and 75.4, 95% CI 70.7–80.2, respectively). Approximately 69.0% (7557/10 946) of the TB cases with DST results were subjected to GeneXpert detection. Overall, the DR-TB status and the use of GeneXpert in Sichuan have improved, but DR-TB challenges remain. HIV testing for all TB cases is recommended.
In this paper, we propose an effective method to compensate for the performance degradation of optically addressed spatial light modulators (OASLMs). The thermal deposition problem usually leads to the on-off ratio reduction of amplitude OASLM, so it is difficult to achieve better results in high-power laser systems. Through the analysis of the laser-induced temperature rise model and the liquid crystal layer voltage model, it is found that reducing the driving voltage of the liquid crystal light valve and increasing the driving current of the optical writing module can compensate for the decrease of on–off ratio caused by temperature rise. This is the result of effectively utilizing the photoconductive effect of Bi12SiO20 (BSO) crystal. The experimental results verify the feasibility of the proposed method and increase the laser withstand power of amplitude-only OASLM by about a factor of 2.5.
Different from developed countries, there is a paucity of research examining how the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) and Mediterranean diets relate to lipids in less-developed ethnic minority regions (LEMR). A total of 83 081 participants from seven ethnic groups were retrieved from the baseline data of the China Multi-Ethnic Cohort study, which was conducted in less-developed Southwest China between May 2018 and September 2019. Multivariable linear regression models were then used to examine the associations of the DASH and alternative Mediterranean diet (AMED) scores, assessed by modified DASH score and AMED, as well as their components with total cholesterol (TC), LDL-cholesterol, HDL-cholesterol, TAG and TC/HDL-cholesterol. The DASH scores were negatively associated with TC, HDL-cholesterol and TAG. Comparing the highest quintiles with the lowest DASH scores, TC decreased 0·0708 (95 % CI −0·0923, −0·0493) mmol/l, HDL-cholesterol decreased 0·0380 (95 % CI −0·0462, −0·0299) mmol/l and TAG decreased 0·0668 (95 % CI −0·0994, −0·0341) mmol/l. The AMED scores were negatively associated with TC, LDL-cholesterol and HDL-cholesterol. Comparing the highest quintiles with the lowest AMED scores, TC decreased 0·0816 (95 % CI −0·1035, −0·0597) mmol/l, LDL-cholesterol decreased 0·0297 (95 % CI −0·0477, −0·0118) mmol/l and HDL-cholesterol decreased 0·0275 (95 % CI −0·0358, −0·0192) mmol/l. Although both the DASH diet and the Mediterranean diet were negatively associated with blood lipids, those associations showed different patterns in LEMR, particularly for TAG and HDL-cholesterol.
High dietary fibre intake has been associated with a lower risk of diabetes, but the association of dietary fibre with prediabetes is only speculative, especially in China, where the supportive data from prospective studies are lacking. This study aimed to examine the association between dietary fibre intake and risk of incident prediabetes among Chinese adults. We performed a prospective analysis in 18 085 participants of the Tianjin Chronic Low-grade Systemic Inflammation and Health cohort study who were free of diabetes, prediabetes, cancer and CVD at baseline. Dietary data were collected using a validated 100-item FFQ. Prediabetes was defined based on the American Diabetes Association diagnostic criteria. Cox proportional hazard models were used to estimate hazard ratios (HR) and 95 % CI. During 63 175 person-years of follow-up, 4139 cases of incident prediabetes occurred. The multivariable HR of prediabetes for the highest v. lowest quartiles were 0·85 (95 % CI 0·75, 0·98) (P for trend = 0·02) for total dietary fibre, 0·84 (95 % CI 0·74, 0·95) (P for trend < 0·01) for soluble fibre and 1·05 (95 % CI 0·93, 1·19) (P for trend = 0·38) for insoluble fibre. Fibre from fruits but not from cereals, beans and vegetables was inversely associated with prediabetes. Our results indicate that intakes of total dietary fibre, soluble fibre and fibre derived from fruit sources were associated with a lower risk of prediabetes.
The present study aimed to explore the association between dietary patterns in abdominal obesity obtained by reduced-rank regression (RRR) with visceral fat index (VFI) as a dependent variable and dyslipidemia in rural adults in Henan, China. A total of 29538 people aged 18–79 were selected from the Henan Rural Cohort Study. RRR analysis was used to identify dietary patterns; logistic regression analysis and restricted cubic spline regression models were applied to analyze the association between dietary patterns in abdominal obesity and dyslipidemia. VFI was used as a mediator to estimate the mediation effect. The dietary pattern in abdominal obesity was characterized by high carbohydrate and red meat intake and low consumption of fresh fruits, vegetables, milk, etc. After full adjustment, the highest quartile of dietary pattern scores was significantly associated with an increased risk of dyslipidemia (OR: 1·33, 95 % CI 1·23–1·44, Ptrend < 0·001), there was a non-linear dose–response relationship between them (Poverall-association < 0·001, Pnon-lin-association = 0·022). The result was similar in dose-response between the dietary pattern scores and VFI. The indirect effect partially mediated by VFI was significant (OR: 1·07, 95 % CI 1·06–1·08). VIF explained approximately 53·3 % of odds of dyslipidemia related to the dietary pattern. Abdominal obesity dietary pattern scores positively affected VFI and dyslipidemia; there was a dose-response in both relationships. Dyslipidemia progression increased with higher abdominal obesity dietary pattern scores. In addition, VFI played a partial mediating role in relationship between abdominal obesity dietary pattern and dyslipidemia.
After fitting a topic model to 40,927 COVID-19–related paragraphs in 3,581 earnings calls over the period Jan. 22–Apr. 30, 2020, we obtain firm-level measures of exposure and response related to COVID-19 for 2,894 U.S. firms. We show that despite the large negative impact of COVID-19 on their operations, firms with a strong corporate culture outperform their peers without a strong culture. Moreover, these firms are more likely to support their community, embrace digital transformation, and develop new products than those peers. We conclude that corporate culture is an intangible asset designed to meet unforeseen contingencies as they arise.
Inspired by gecko’s adhesive feet, a wheeled wall climbing robot is designed in this paper with the synchronized gears and belt system acting as the wheels by considering both motion efficiency and adhesive capability. Adhesion of wheels is obtained by the bio-inspired adhesive material wrapping on the outer surface of wheels. A ducted fan mounted on the back of the robot supplies thrust force for the adhesive material to generate normal and shear adhesion force whilemoving on vertical surfaces. Experimental verification of robot climbing on vertical flat surface was carried out. The stability and the effect of structure design parameters were analyzed.
Seaweeds have numerous biologically active ingredients, such as polysaccharides, polyphenols and carotenoids, that are beneficial to human health. Although these benefits might be related to the synthesis, secretion or reabsorption of uric acid, no studies have explored the relationship between seaweeds consumption and hyperuricaemia (HUA) in the general population. The aim of this study was to investigate whether seaweeds consumption is related to HUA in a large-scale adult population. A cross-sectional study was conducted with 32 365 adults (17 328 men and 15 037 women) in Tianjin, People’s Republic of China. Frequency of seaweeds consumption was assessed by a validated self-administered FFQ. HUA was defined as serum uric acid levels >420 μmol/L in men and >350 μmol/L in women. The association between seaweeds consumption and HUA was assessed by multiple logistic regression analysis. Restricted cubic spline functions were used for non-linearity tests. The prevalence of HUA in men and women was 21·17 % and 5·93 %, respectively. After adjustments for potential confounding factors, the OR (95 % CI) for HUA across seaweed consumption (g/1000 kcal per d) were 1·00 (reference) for level 1, 0·91 (95 % CI 0·81, 1·02) for level 2; 0·90 (95 % CI 0·81, 1·01) for level 3; 0·86 (95 % CI 0·78, 0·97) for level 4 in men and 0·90 (95 % CI 0·73, 1·10) for level 2; 0·82 (95 % CI 0·67, 1·00) for level 3; 0·84 (95 % CI 0·68, 1·03) for level 4 in women, respectively. A negative correlation between seaweeds consumption and HUA in males but not in females was observed. Further studies are needed to explore the causal relationship.
The Dayao Paleolithic site, located in Inner Mongolia on the eastern margin of China's vast northwestern drylands, was a lithic quarry-workshop utilized by Pleistocene human migrants through the region. Determining the age of this activity has previously yielded controversial results. Our magnetostratigraphic and OSL dating results suggest the two artifact-bearing paleosols are correlated with MIS 5 and 7, respectively. Correlating paleoclimatic data with marine δ18O records leads us to conclude that two sandy gravel layers containing many artifacts in the lower part of the Dayao sequence were formed during MIS 9 and 11, if not earlier. Our results reveal that the earliest human occupation at the Dayao site occurred before ca. 400 ka during a relatively warm and moist interglacial period, similar to several subsequent occupations, documenting the earliest and northernmost archaeological assemblage yet reported in China's arid northwest. We conclude that the northward and southward displacements of the East Asian summer monsoon rain belt during past interglacial-glacial cycles were responsible for the discontinuous human occupation detected at the Dayao site. The penetration of this precipitation regime into dryland ecologies via the Huanghe (Yellow River) Valley effectively created a corridor for hominin migration into China's arid northwest.
This article contends that prior research on the behaviour of Chinese local cadres pays limited attention to their motivation for avoiding blame. Using qualitative data from three field studies conducted in Guangdong province, the study focuses on blame avoidance in the cadre responsibility system, which is recognized as an important instrument for state capacity building. Our analysis uncovers three major discursive strategies used by grassroots cadres to manage blame either before or after it is apportioned: de-legitimating performance standards, re-attributing blame and transferring blame risk. We find that local cadres have a role as blame makers in shifting blame and accusations. This finding challenges the conventional view, which typically sees local officials as blame takers. The article concludes by elaborating on the wider implications of this finding and proposing avenues for future research.
A multidisciplinary fieldwork and research project was recently begun at the Yangshang site (220–140 ka), a late Early Paleolithic locale in the western Chinese Loess Plateau. 1696 lithic artifacts and 337 faunal remains were recovered during the excavation. Sedimentological and paleoenvironmental investigations indicate the site preserves a relatively long and minimally disturbed archaeological sequence associated with paleoenvironmental changes during MIS 7–6. A detailed techno-typological analysis of Yangshang's lithic assemblages was undertaken to examine the influence of glacial cycles on late Middle Pleistocene hominin technological strategies in the western Chinese Loess Plateau. The results show that while the Yangshang site is dominated by quartz-based core/flake assemblages typical of most Early Paleolithic sites in North China, the lithic assemblages provide evidence that different provisioning systems existed during the penultimate glaciation. We argue that these shifts reflect changes in land use and mobility that were tied to climate change. Our results suggest that theoretically informed statistical analyses of so-called unchanging and crude lithic technology can yield meaningful evidence for behavioral shifts.
We aimed to investigate whether dietary patterns were associated with the risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) or pre-diabetes in adults of rural area in Henan.
Cross-sectional study. Principal component analysis was used to identify dietary patterns, while multivariate logistic regression analysis and restricted cubic spline regression models were used to analyse the association between dietary patterns and both pre-diabetes and T2DM.
Rural area of Henan province, China.
A total of 38 779 adults aged 18–79 years were recruited from the Henan rural cohort study as the subjects.
The prevalence of pre-diabetes and T2DM in rural Henan was 6·8 % and 9·4 %, respectively. A total of three dietary patterns were assessed in the present study. Dietary pattern I with a high intake of red meat and white meat; dietary pattern II with a high intake of grains, nuts, milk and eggs and dietary pattern III with a high intake of vegetables, staple food and fruits. The highest quintile (Q5) of pattern III could reduce 32·7 % risk of pre-diabetes. The Q5 of pattern II showed a 15·5 % decreased risk of T2DM, in a U-shaped dose–response manner; meanwhile, the Q5 of pattern III was significantly associated with reduced risks of T2DM (OR: 0·582, 95 % CI (0·497, 0·682)).
Pattern III is beneficial for reducing risk of pre-diabetes or T2DM. Though a higher consumption of ‘grains-nuts-egg’ may associate with a reduced risk of T2DM, excessive intakes should be avoided. This study may provide a reference for the prevention of diabetes on dietary precautions.
Early identification of patients with novel corona virus disease 2019 (COVID-19) who may be at high mortality risk is of great importance.
In this retrospective study, we included all patients with COVID-19 at Huanggang Central Hospital from January 23 to March 5, 2020. Data on clinical characteristics and outcomes were compared between survivors and nonsurvivors. Univariable and multivariable logistic regression were used to explore risk factors associated with in-hospital death. A nomogram was established based on the risk factors selected by multivariable analysis.
A total of 150 patients were enrolled, including 31 nonsurvivors and 119 survivors. The multivariable logistic analysis indicated that increasing the odds of in-hospital death associated with higher Sequential Organ Failure Assessment score (odds ratio [OR], 3.077; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.848-5.122; P < 0.001), diabetes (OR, 10.474; 95% CI: 1.554-70.617; P = 0.016), and lactate dehydrogenase greater than 245 U/L (OR, 13.169; 95% CI: 2.934-59.105; P = 0.001) on admission. A nomogram was established based on the results of the multivariable analysis. The AUC of the nomogram was 0.970 (95% CI: 0.947-0.992), showing good accuracy in predicting the risk of in-hospital death.
This finding would facilitate the early identification of patients with COVID-19 who have a high-risk for fatal outcome.