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The objective of this study was to delineate the characteristics and incidence of congenital heart disease (CHD) in patients with isolated microtia and to determine whether the prevalence of CHD among patients with isolated microtia increases with the severity of microtia.
A total of 804 consecutive patients had a pre-operative colour Doppler echocardiographic examination. A retrospective study was performed with the clinical and imaging data from November, 2017 to January, 2019. The χ2 test was performed to analyse the interaction between isolated microtia and CHD.
With the colour Doppler echocardiographic examination’s data from 804 consecutive isolated microtia patients, we found CHD, including atrial septal defect, ventricular septal defect, tetralogy of Fallot, patent ductus arteriosus, and others, occurred in 52 of 804 patients (6.5%). Atrial septal defect prevalence in patients with isolated microtia was significantly higher than ventricular septal defect (24/804 versus 11/804, p < 0.05) and patent ductus arteriosus (24/804 versus 2/804, p < 0.001). Ventricular septal defect prevalence in patients with isolated microtia was significantly higher than patent ductus arteriosus (11/804 versus 2/804, p < 0.05). All four types of microtia (concha-type microtia, small concha-type microtia, lobule-type microtia, and anotia) had similar incidences of CHD with no difference in the incidences among these types (p > 0.05 respectively). Furthermore, there was no significant difference in the incidence of the atrial septal defect among the four subtypes (p > 0.05 respectively). Similarly, ventricular septal defect and patent ductus arteriosus also showed no differences (p > 0.05 respectively).
The overall incidences of CHD and three most common CHD subtypes (atrial septal defect, ventricular septal defect, and patent ductus arteriosus) in patients with isolated microtia are higher than general population. The prevalence of CHD among patients with isolated microtia does not increase with the severity of microtia. According to our experience in this study, we suggest colour Doppler echocardiographic imaging should be performed for isolated microtia patients soon after birth if possible. Furthermore, for the plastic surgeon and anaesthesiologist, it is important to take pre-operative colour Doppler echocardiographic images which can help evaluate heart function to ensure the safety of the peri-operative period. Future studies when investigating CHDs associated with isolated microtia could focus on genetic and molecular mechanisms.
The accurate prediction of turbulent mixing induced by Rayleigh–Taylor (R–T), Richtmyer–Meshkov (R–M) and Kelvin–Helmholtz (K–H) instabilities is very important in understanding natural phenomena and improving engineering applications. In applications, the prediction of mixing with the Reynolds-averaged Navier–Stokes (RANS) equation remains the most widely used method. The RANS method involves two aspects, i.e. physical modelling and model coefficients. Generally, the latter is determined empirically; thus, there is a lack of universality. In this paper, inspired by the well-known Reynolds decomposition, we propose a methodology to determine the model coefficients with the following three steps: (i) preset a set of analytical RANS solutions by fully using the knowledge of mixing evolutions; (ii) simplify the differential RANS equations to algebraic equations by imposing the preset solutions to RANS equations; (iii) solve the algebraic equations approximately to give the values of the entire model coefficients. The specific application of this methodology in the widely used K–L mixing model shows that, using the same set of model coefficients determined from the current methodology, the K–L model successfully predicts the mixing evolutions in terms of different physical quantities (e.g. temporal scalings and spatial profiles), density ratios and problems (e.g. R–T, R–M, K–H and reshocked R–M mixings). It is possible to extend this methodology to other turbulence models characterised with self-similar evolutions, such as K-
Increased intake of vegetables and fruits has been associated with reduced risk of tuberculosis infection. Vegetables and fruits exert immunoregulatory effects; however, it is not clear whether vegetables and fruits have an adjuvant treatment effect on tuberculosis. Between 2009 and 2013, a hospital-based cohort study was conducted in Linyi, Shandong Province, China. Treatment outcome was ascertained by sputum smear and chest computerised tomography, and dietary intake was assessed by a semi-quantitative FFQ. The dietary questionnaire was conducted at the end of month 2 of treatment initiation. Participants recalled their dietary intake of the previous 2 months. A total of 2309 patients were enrolled in this study. After 6 months of treatment, 2099 patients were successfully treated and 210 were uncured. In multivariate models, higher intake of total vegetables and fruits (OR 0·70; 95 % CI 0·49, 0·99), total vegetables (OR 0·68; 95 % CI 0·48, 0·97), dark-coloured vegetables (OR 0·61; 95 % CI 0·43, 0·86) and light-coloured vegetables (OR 0·67; 95 % CI 0·48, 0·95) were associated with reduced failure rate of tuberculosis treatment. No association was found between total fruit intake and reduced failure rate of tuberculosis treatment (OR 0·98; 95 % CI 0·70, 1·37). High intake of total vegetables and fruits, especially vegetables, is associated with lower risk of failure of tuberculosis treatment in pulmonary tuberculosis patients. The results provide important information for dietary guidelines during tuberculosis treatment.
Clonorchis sinensis (C. sinensis) is one of the most serious food-borne parasites, which can lead to liver fibrosis or cholangiocarcinoma. Effective measures for clonorchiasis prevention are still urgently needed. Bacillus subtilis (B. subtilis) is an effective antigen delivery platform for oral vaccines. Chonorchis sinensis serpin (CsSerpin) was proved to be potential vaccine candidates. In this study, CsSerpin3 was displayed on the surface of B. subtilis spore and recombinant spores were orally administrated to BALB/C mice. CsSerpin3-specific IgA levels in faecal, bile and intestinal mucous increased at 4–8 weeks after the first administration compared with those in control groups. The mucus production and the number of goblet cells in intestinal mucosa elevated in B.s-CotC-CsSerpin3 (CotC, coat protein of B. subtilis spore) spores treated group compared to those in blank control. No significant difference in the activities of glutamic-pyruvic transaminase/ alanine aminotransferase and glutamic oxalacetic transaminase/aspartate aminotransferase were observed between groups. There was no side effect inflammation and observable pathological damage in the liver tissue of mice after administration. Moreover, collagen deposition and Ishak score were statistically reduced in B.s-CotC-CsSerpin3 spores treated mice. In conclusion, B. subtilis spores displaying CsSerpin3 could be investigated further as an oral vaccine against clonorchiasis.
In this research communication, a cell model with elevated β-CASEIN synthesis was established by stimulating bovine mammary epithelial cells with 0.6 mM methionine, and the genome-wide gene expression profiles of methionine-stimulated cells and untreated cells were investigated by RNA sequencing. A total of 458 differentially expressed genes (DEGs; 219 upregulated and 239 downregulated) were identified between the two groups. Gene Ontology (GO) analysis showed that the two highest-ranked GO terms in ‘molecular function’ category were ‘binding’ and ‘catalytic activity’, suggesting that milk protein synthesis in methionine-stimulated cells requires induction of gene expression to increase metabolic activity. Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes analysis revealed that within the ‘environmental information processing’ category, the subcategory that is most highly enriched for DEGs was ‘signal transduction’. cGMP-PKG, Rap1, calcium, cAMP, PI3K-AKT, MAPK, and JAK-STAT are the pathways with the highest number of DEGs, suggesting that these signaling pathways have potential roles in mediating methionine-induced milk protein synthesis in bovine mammary epithelial cells. This study provides valuable insights into the physiological and metabolic adaptations in cells stimulated with methionine. Understanding the regulation of this transition is essential for effective intervention in the lactation process.
We aimed to evaluate the relationship of plasma Mg with the risk of new-onset hyperuricaemia and examine any possible effect modifiers in hypertensive patients. This is a post hoc analysis of the Uric acid (UA) Sub-study of the China Stroke Primary Prevention Trial (CSPPT). A total of 1685 participants were included in the present study. The main outcome was new-onset hyperuricaemia defined as a UA concentration ≥417 μmol/l in men or ≥357 μmol/l in women. The secondary outcome was a change in UA concentration defined as UA at the exit visit minus that at baseline. During a median follow-up duration of 4·3 years, new-onset hyperuricaemia occurred in 290 (17·2 %) participants. There was a significantly inverse relation of plasma Mg with the risk of new-onset hyperuricaemia (per sd increment; OR 0·85; 95 % CI 0·74, 0·99) and change in UA levels (per sd increment; β −3·96 μmol/l; 95 % CI −7·14, −0·79). Consistently, when plasma Mg was analysed as tertiles, a significantly lower risk of new-onset hyperuricaemia (OR 0·67; 95 % CI 0·48, 0·95) and less increase in UA levels (β −8·35 μmol/l; 95 % CI −16·12, −0·58) were found among participants in tertile 3 (≥885·5 μmol/l) compared with those in tertile 1 (<818·9 μmol/l). Similar trends were found in males and females. Higher plasma Mg levels were associated with a decreased risk of new-onset hyperuricaemia in hypertensive adults.
Pancreatic cancer is currently one of the most lethal tumors because of delayed diagnosis and treatment. Aminopeptidase N (CD13/APN), expressed in pancreatic cancer cells, is closely related to the malignant biological behavior, for instance, angiogenesis formation, tumor proliferation, and metastasis. In this study, asparagine–glycine–arginine (Asn–Gly–Arg, NGR), selectively binding to CD13 receptor, was modified to construct a novel contrast agent of QDs@Gd3+-NGR for targeted diagnosis and treatment of pancreatic cancer. It consists of QDs-unit for fluorescence imaging, Gd3+-unit for magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and NGR for binding to CD13 receptor. PANC-1 cells labeled by QDs@Gd3+-NGR showed significant red fluorescence and high intensity on fluorescence and MR imaging, respectively. Besides, it was confirmed that QDs@Gd3+-NGR could inhibit theproliferation, metastasis, and invasion of PANC-1 cells, and increase reactive oxygen species production and death rate in vitro. Reasonably, we believe the targeted contrast agent of QDs@Gd3+-NGR can sensitively detect pancreatic cancer via MR-fluorescence dual-modality imaging, and plays an active role in inhibition of tumor progression. The promising results in this study provide integration of diagnostic and therapeutic strategy for the management of pancreatic cancer in future.
This article presents a brief review of our case studies of data-driven Integrated Computational Materials Engineering (ICME) for intelligently discovering advanced structural metal materials, including light-weight materials (Ti, Mg, and Al alloys), refractory high-entropy alloys, and superalloys. The basic bonding in terms of topology and electronic structures is recommended to be considered as the building blocks/units constructing the microstructures of advanced materials. It is highlighted that the bonding charge density could not only provide an atomic and electronic insight into the physical nature of chemical bond of materials but also reveal the fundamental strengthening/embrittlement mechanisms and the local phase transformations of planar defects, paving a path in accelerating the development of advanced metal materials via interfacial engineering. Perspectives on the knowledge-based modeling/simulations, machine-learning knowledge base, platform, and next-generation workforce for sustainable ecosystem of ICME are highlighted, thus to call for more duty on the developments of advanced structural metal materials and enhancement of research productivity and collaboration.
In order to improve the training efficiency and establish a multi-person cooperative training simulation system, including “virtual human,” in the process of virtual reality-based astronaut training, it is necessary to plan the velocity at which astronauts carry the target object. A velocity planning algorithm, combining a traditional six-stage acceleration/deceleration algorithm, based on a time-discrete model with high-order dynamic constraints, considering the elastic damping torque of the space suit, is proposed. The described algorithm is verified on MATLAB to prove its feasibility. Compared to other algorithms, the planning time of the proposed algorithm is significantly reduced.
We aimed to investigate the association between plasma retinol and incident cancer among Chinese hypertensive adults. We conducted a nested case–control study, including 231 patients with incident cancer and 231 matched controls during a median 4·5-year follow-up of the China Stroke Primary Prevention Trial. There was a significant, inverse association between retinol levels and digestive system cancer (per 10 μg/dl increases: OR 0·79; 95 % CI 0·69, 0·91). When compared with participants in the first quartile of retinol (< 52·3 μg/dl), a significantly lower cancer risk was found in participants in quartile 2–4 ( ≥ 52·3 μg/dl: OR 0·31; 95 % CI 0·13, 0·71). However, there was a U-shaped association between retinol levels and non-digestive system cancers where the risk of cancers decreased (although not significantly) with each increment of plasma retinol (per 10 μg/dl increases: OR 0·89; 95 % CI 0·60, 1·31) in participants with retinol < 68·2 μg/dl, and then increased significantly with retinol (per 10 μg/dl increase: OR 1·65; 95 % CI 1·12, 2·44) in participants with retinol ≥ 68·2 μg/dl. In conclusion, there was a significant inverse dose–response association between plasma retinol and the risk of digestive system cancers. However, a U-shaped association was observed between plasma retinol and the risk of non-digestive cancers (with a turning point approximately 68·2 μg/dl).
Differences in pipe wall microstructure at various positions throughout the wall thickness of high strength aluminum alloy thick-wall pipes produced by reverse hot extrusion were investigated. The microstructures of the inner wall (IW), outer wall (OW), and half wall (HW) were compared. Further, heterogeneity in the mechanical properties of the pipe throughout the wall thickness was also investigated. Results revealed that the volume fraction of precipitation was highest at the HW position because of the higher Zn and Mg contents. Further, approximately 26% of grains were recrystallized in the OW position due to the greater strain during extrusion, while the recrystallization fractions of the IW and HW positions were 13% and 21%, respectively. The effects of precipitation strengthening and deformation strengthening contribute to the highest ultimate tensile strength and Vickers hardness of the HW position, and to the higher elongation of the IW and OW positions.
Schizophrenia is a complex mental disorder with high heritability and polygenic inheritance. Multimodal neuroimaging studies have also indicated that abnormalities of brain structure and function are a plausible neurobiological characterisation of schizophrenia. However, the polygenic effects of schizophrenia on these imaging endophenotypes have not yet been fully elucidated.
To investigate the effects of polygenic risk for schizophrenia on the brain grey matter volume and functional connectivity, which are disrupted in schizophrenia.
Genomic and neuroimaging data from a large sample of Han Chinese patients with schizophrenia (N = 509) and healthy controls (N = 502) were included in this study. We examined grey matter volume and functional connectivity via structural and functional magnetic resonance imaging, respectively. Using the data from a recent meta-analysis of a genome-wide association study that comprised a large number of Chinese people, we calculated a polygenic risk score (PGRS) for each participant.
The imaging genetic analysis revealed that the individual PGRS showed a significantly negative correlation with the hippocampal grey matter volume and hippocampus–medial prefrontal cortex functional connectivity, both of which were lower in the people with schizophrenia than in the controls. We also found that the observed neuroimaging measures showed weak but similar changes in unaffected first-degree relatives of patients with schizophrenia.
These findings suggested that genetically influenced brain grey matter volume and functional connectivity may provide important clues for understanding the pathological mechanisms of schizophrenia and for the early diagnosis of schizophrenia.
GH3536 alloy is one of the high-temperature nickel-based alloys and widely applied in aviation and aerospace industries. In this study, a combination of experiment and simulation is proposed to study the effect of processing parameters on the selective laser melting (SLM) of GH3536 powder. It is concluded that the relationship between density and laser input energy during SLM complies with a quadratic function and presents an inverted U-shaped distribution. By fitting density and input power to a quadratic polynomial, the optimal laser input energy during SLM of GH3536 alloy can be obtained. The result shows that using 275 W laser power and 960 mm/s scanning speed, the SLM GH3536 specimens can reach the maximum density. This experimental result is consistent with the simulation result obtained by analyzing molten pool dimension. Furthermore, a full process energy prediction diagram for SLM GH3536 alloy based on the simulated molten pool depth and width is proposed. The result shows that it provides an innovative and efficient method for the selection of processing parameters during SLM of GH3536 powder.
In this study, a thermal–elastic–plastic finite element model is proposed to investigate the effect of volume energy density on the temperature field, molten pool size, and residual stress distribution in the selective laser melting (SLM) process of Inconel 718 alloy. A temperature-dependent thermal–mechanical property of materials is considered, as well as the properties conversion between powder layer and solidified alloy. Within the scope of the study parameters, the simulated molten pool size increases with increasing volume energy density and exhibits linear growth relationship, which are validated by the experimental results and show a good agreement. In addition, five scanning strategies are adopted to study the effect of these scanning strategies on the residual stress distribution in this research. The results show that the residual stress distribution of SLM Inconel 718 specimen largely depends on the scanning strategy. Finally, to reveal the mechanism of residual stress formation, the restraint bar model is used to further analyze the formation mechanism of residual stress during the SLM process.
In this research communication we used digital gene expression (DGE) analysis to identify differences in gene expression in the mammary glands of dairy cows between early lactation and the mid-dry period. A total of 741 genes were identified as being differentially expressed by DGE analysis. Compared with their expression in dry cows, 214 genes were up-regulated and 527 genes were down-regulated in lactating cow mammary glands. Gene Ontology analysis showed that lactation was supported by increased gene expression related to metabolic processes and nutrient transport and was associated with decreased gene expression related to cell proliferation. Pathway mapping using the Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes showed that 579 differentially expressed genes had pathway annotations related to 204 pathways. Metabolic pathway-related genes were the most significantly enriched. Genes and pathways identified by the present study provide insights into molecular events that occur in the mammary gland between early lactation and mid-dry period, which can be used to facilitate further investigation of the mechanisms underlying lactation and mammary tissue remodeling in dairy cows.
A 5G new radio cellular system is characterized by three main usage scenarios of enhanced mobile broadband (eMBB), ultra-reliable and low latency communications (URLLC), and massive machine type communications, which require improved throughput, latency, and reliability compared with a 4G system. This overview paper discusses key characteristics of 5G channel coding schemes which are mainly designed for the eMBB scenario as well as for partial support of the URLLC scenario focusing on low latency. Two capacity-achieving channel coding schemes of low-density parity-check (LDPC) codes and polar codes have been adopted for 5G where the former is for user data and the latter is for control information. As a coding scheme for data, 5G LDPC codes are designed to support high throughput, a variable code rate and length and hybrid automatic repeat request in addition to good error correcting capability. 5G polar codes, as a coding scheme for control, are designed to perform well with short block length while addressing a latency issue of successive cancellation decoding.
The evolution of fatigue performance and surface mechanical properties of AISI 304 stainless steel induced by the electropulsing-assisted ultrasonic surface rolling process (EP-USRP) was systematically investigated by integrating instrumented indentation, scanning electron microscopy with electron backscatter diffraction, and transmission electron microscopy. The results indicate that higher hardness, greater strength, finer ultra-refined grains, and higher residual compressive stress are formed within the strengthened layer compared with the original ultrasonic surface rolling process (USRP). EP-USRP with the optimized experimental parameters can produce a higher average rotating bending fatigue strength for AISI 304 stainless steel than USRP. Anomalously and noteworthily, all fatigue specimens treated by EP-USRP showed an incomplete fracture, revealing a higher reservation of safety in practical engineering applications. The further modified structure strengthening and stress strengthening induced by EP-USRP are likely the primary intrinsic reasons for the observed phenomena. Furthermore, the influence mechanism of EP-USRP was discussed scrupulously.
In this work, corrosion-resistant fluoridated Ca–Mg–P composite coatings were prepared on magnesium alloys via a hydrothermal assisted sol–gel process. All these coatings derived from Coating Sols with different F− concentrations are composed of fluoridated hydroxyapatite, magnesium hydroxide, and dittmarite. When F− concentration of Coating Sol is 0.03 M, the coating exhibited uniform and dense surface, and its thickness reached 32 μm, thus possessing a high charge transfer resistance of 312 ± 12.69 kΩ cm2 in simulated body fluid (SBF). Immersion test in SBF showed that this coating could quickly induce the formation of the mineralized layer, implying relatively high bioactivity. After 49 days of immersion, the original composite coating and newly formed mineralized layer reached 60 μm in thickness, providing effective long-term protection for magnesium alloys. These attractive results indicate that this fluoridated Ca–Mg–P composite coating is a promising protective coating on biodegradable magnesium and magnesium alloy implants for orthopaedic applications.
Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is one of the leading causes of death and morbidity associated with liver disease. Risk factors identified for the transmission of HCV include contaminated blood products, intravenous drug use, body piercing, an infected mother at birth, sexual activity, and dental therapy, among others. However, the exact diversity of the HCV genotype and genetic variation among patients with low-risk factors is still unknown. In this study, we briefly described and analysed the genotype distribution and genetic variation of HCV infections with low-risk factors using molecular biology techniques. The results suggested that genotype 1b was predominant, followed by genotypes 2a and 1a. Genetic variations in the 5′ UTR sequences of HCV were identified, including point mutations, deletions, and insertions. The frequency of genetic variations in 1b was higher than in 2a. This study provides considerable value for the prevention and treatment of liver disease caused by HCV among patients with low-risk factors and for the development of HCV diagnostic reagents and vaccines.
In this study, we present clay mineral records from a late Pleistocene loess-paleosol sequence in the Ili Basin, Central Asia, and assess their significance for paleoclimatic reconstruction. The results show that the clay minerals are mainly illite (average 60%) and chlorite (28%), with minor kaolinite (9%) and smectite (3%). Illite was of detrital origin with no obvious modification to its crystal structure. Increases in illite content in the loess are ascribed to wind intensity rather than pedogenesis. High proportions of illite in the clay fraction, and of muscovite in the bulk samples of the paleosol units, may lead to an overestimation of the weathering intensity. Kaolinite was likely inherited from the sedimentary rocks, while chlorite might have been inherited from both sedimentary and metamorphic rocks. The paleoclimatic signals of kaolinite and chlorite were unclear, due to reworking by both fluvial and eolian systems. Smectite was more likely formed by the transformation of biotite and illite, and its variation in the loess sequence was also controlled by wind intensity; this was largely due to aggregation and is unlikely to reflect moisture changes. Although the interpretation of paleoclimate evolution may contain some uncertainties, clay mineralogy does provide the possibility of tracing dust provenance.