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The dipeptide DL-methionyl-DL-Methionine (Met-Met) has extremely low water solubility and better absorption than other methionine sources (such as DL-methionine and L-methionine) available in the market. Therefore, six diets (D1, D2, D3, D4, D5 and D6) containing 0 %, 0.07%, 0.15%, 0.21%, 0.28% and 0.38% Met-Met were formulated to investigate the effects of Met-Met on Oreochromis niloticus. The results indicated that percent weight gain and specific growth rate of fish fed with D2 and D3 diets were higher than those fed with D1, D4-D6 diets. The levels of total essential amino acid in whole body of fish fed with D3 and D4 diets were significantly higher than those fed the D1 diet. Superoxide dismutase activity and malondialdehyde content were no significant difference in fed the diet with or without Met-Met supplementation. Majority of reads derived from the fish intestines belonged to members of Fusobacteria, followed by Bacteroidetes, Proteobacteria. Diversity of intestinal microbiota and total antioxidant capacity in fish fed with D3 diet was significantly higher than that of other groups. Since due to the growth results the authors conclude the optimal proportion of Met was 0.61%, and the addition of Met-Met was 0.15% in O. niloticus.
In this study, we argue that foreign subsidiaries may benefit from the corporate strategies of multinational enterprises (MNEs) in different ways in terms of knowledge transfer and strategic flexibility. From this viewpoint, we explore the relationship between product diversification and financial performance of their subsidiaries under the condition of MNE geographic diversification. Using panel data on foreign subsidiaries in European countries from 2006 to 2011, we find a U-shaped relationship between product diversification and subsidiary performance and the joint effect of product and geographic diversification. Given the importance of transition economies in international business today, we conducted a subsample test contrasting the results based on the transitional (Central and Eastern European) versus Western European countries. The contrasting results provide important implications for other transition economies like China. We validate the relationship in several ways in our robustness tests.
Many components in diet have regulated oxidative stress, inflammatory reaction and even balance estrogen levels. Because these factors are closely associated with depressive symptoms in postmenopausal women, it is considered that dietary factors are able to prevent and control depressive symptoms. On the other hand, dietary pattern that considers the correlations and synergies between foods and nutrients, is expected to have a greater impact on disease risk. The aim of this study is to evaluate whether dietary patterns are associated with depressive symptoms in Chinese postmenopausal women.
A cross-sectional study of 2051 postmenopausal women (mean age: 58.8±7.4 years) was conducted in Tianjin, China. Dietary consumption was assessed by a valid self-administered food frequency questionnaire. Principal component analysis was used to derive three major dietary patterns: “healthy”, “sweets” and “Traditional Tianjin” from 88 food items. Depressive symptoms were assessed using the Zung Self-Rating Depression Scale, and cut-off point of 48 indicating serious depressive symptoms. The associations between quartile of dietary patterns and depressive symptoms were assessed by using multiple logistic regression analysis.
The multivariable-adjusted odds ratios (95% confidence intervals) of having depressive symptoms for increasing quartile of dietary patterns were as follows: “healthy”, 1.00, 0.79(0.49–1.28), 0.62(0.37–1.04), and 0.57(0.33–0.97); “sweets”,1.00, 0.75(0.42–1.3), 1.08(0.64–1.81) and 1.66(1.03–2.71); “Traditional Tianjin”, 1.00, 1.02(0.58–1.79), 0.96 (0.54–1.71) and 2.53(1.58–4.16), respectively.
The present study demonstrated that a healthy dietary pattern was inversely associated with depressive symptoms. On the contrary, greater adherence to sweets and Traditional Tianjin dietary patterns were associated with a higher prevalence of depressive symptoms.
In this work, atomic layer deposition (ALD), as a novel strategy, has been applied to deposit MgO on nano-sized porous Si (pSi) dendrites obtained by etching Al–Si alloy for LIBs. The reversible specific capacity of pSi@MgO electrode is 969.4 mA h/g after 100 cycles at 100 mA/g between 0.01 and 1.5 V, and it presents the discharge specific capacities of 1253.0, 885.5, 642.4, 366.2, and 101.4 mA h/g at 100, 500, 1000, 2000, and 5000 mA/g, respectively. What is more, it delivers a high reversible capacity of 765.1 mA h/g even at 500 mA/g after 200 cycles. The performance improvement can be attributed to the protection of the MgO layer and built-in space of porous Si for volume expansion upon cycling. These results illustrate that ALD derived coating is a powerful strategy to enhance electrical properties of anode materials with huge volume change for lithium-ion batteries.
Human innate immune plays an essential role in the spontaneous clearance of acute infection and therapy of HCV. We investigated whether the SNPs in retinoic acid-inducible gene I-like receptor family were associated with HCV spontaneous clearance and response to treatment. To evaluate the clinical value of DDX58 rs3824456, rs10813831 and rs10738889 genotypes on HCV spontaneous clearance and treatment response in Chinese Han population, we genotyped 1001 HCV persistent infectors, 599 participants with HCV natural clearance and 354 patients with PEGylated interferon-α and ribavirin (PEG IFN-α/RBV) treatment. People carrying rs10813831-G allele genotype were more liable to achieve spontaneous clearance than the carriage of the T allele (dominant model: adjusted OR 1.35, 95% CI 1.08–1.71, P = 0.008). In rs10738889, the rate of persistent infection was significantly lower in patients with the TC genotype compared to those with TT genotype (dominant model: adjusted OR 1.36, 95% CI 1.06–1.74, P = 0.015). Multivariate stepwise analysis indicated that rs10738889, age, alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and aspartate aminotransferase (AST) were independent predictors for HCV spontaneous clearance. However, there were no significant differences in the three selection SNPs between the non-SVR group and the SVR group. These results suggest the DDX58 rs10813831 and rs10738889 are associated with spontaneous clearance of HCV, which may be identified as a predictive marker in the Chinese Han population of HCV.
Force-feeding was considered as a traditional high-efficiency approach to improve growth performance and accelerate fat deposition of Pekin ducks. However, force-feeding is a serious violation of international advocacy on animal welfare, because it can induce serious injuries to animals, such as damages to the digestive tract, effects on immunity and even severe oxidative stress. Therefore, it is urgent to stop force-feeding. The aim of this study was to determine the effects of force feeding on immune function, digestive function and oxidative stress in the mucosa of duodenum and jejunum of Pekin ducks. A total of 500 ducks were randomly divided into two groups. The control group was allowed to feed freely on a basal diet. The experimental group was force-fed by inserting a plastic feeding tube 8 to 10 inches long down the esophagus for 6 days. Compared with the control group, there was a significant (P<0.05) increase in serum diamine oxidase, d-lactic acid, endotoxin and corticosterone levels in the force-feeding group. The crypt depth in duodenum and jejunum showed significant differences (P<0.05) between the two groups and the intestinal villus epithelium cell was severely damaged in force-feeding group. Similarly, the activities of digestive enzymes as well as the levels of immune function in the duodenal and jejunal mucosa in the force-feeding group were significantly higher than the control group (P<0.05). However, there was a significant decrease in the superoxide dismutase, glutathione peroxidase and catalase levels with a marked increase in malondialdehyde level in duodenal and jejunal mucosa (P<0.05). In summary, at the end of the fattening period with force-feeding for 6 days, Pekin ducks experienced an adverse effect on the integrity of their duodenal and jejunal mucosa epithelium cell as well as their immune function and antioxidant capacity of Pekin ducks but also had improvement in digestive enzyme activities.
The timing of the Holocene summer monsoon maximum (HSMM) in northeastern China has been much debated and more quantitative precipitation records are needed to resolve the issue. In the present study, Holocene precipitation and temperature changes were quantitatively reconstructed from a pollen record from the sediments of Tianchi Crater Lake in northeastern China using a plant functional type-modern analogue technique (PFT-MAT). The reconstructed precipitation record indicates a gradual increase during the early to mid-Holocene and a HSMM at ~5500–3100 cal yr BP, while the temperature record exhibits a divergent pattern with a marked rise in the early Holocene and a decline thereafter. The trend of reconstructed precipitation is consistent with that from other pollen records in northeastern China, confirming the relatively late occurrence of the HSMM in the region. However, differences in the onset of the HSMM within northeastern China are also evident. No single factor appears to be responsible for the late occurrence of the HSMM in northeastern China, pointing to a potentially complex forcing mechanism of regional rainfall in the East Asian monsoon region. We suggest that further studies are needed to understand the spatiotemporal pattern of the HSMM in the region.
Seed germination, the first and critical step of the plant's life cycle, is affected by salt stress. However, the underlying mechanism of salt tolerance during early seed germination remains elusive. Here, a comparative RNA-seq analysis was performed using early germinating seeds either under normal conditions or in 100 and 150 mM sodium chloride. A total of 575 genes were up-regulated and 913 genes were down-regulated in the presence of 100 mM NaCl. Under the 150 mM NaCl treatment 1921 genes were up-regulated and 3501 genes were down-regulated. A total of 379 or 863 genes were up-regulated or down-regulated in both 100 and 150mM NaCl. These co-regulated genes were further analysed by GO enrichment. Genes in the categories abscisic acid signaling and synthesis and nutrient reservoir activity were significantly enriched in the up-regulated genes. Transcription factors responsive to gibberellin and auxin were significantly down-regulated by salinity stress. Genes related to anti-oxidant activity were significantly enriched in the down-regulated gene clusters by NaCl treatment. Our results suggest that salt stress inhibits seed germination by activating ABA synthesis and signalling, and depressing GA and auxin signalling, while preserving nutrition and down-regulated anti-oxidant activity. Our study provides more insight into the molecular mechanism of salt tolerance during early seed germination.
From a coopetition perspective, we differentiate between a multinational enterprise's product-similar subsidiary network and product-different subsidiary network in a host country. We argue that the product-similar network will have a curvilinear (inverted U-shaped) effect on foreign subsidiary performance, whereas the product-different network will produce a monotonic (positive) effect. Moreover, we introduce host-country economic advantage and intangible resource of the subsidiary as moderators into the relationship between subsidiary network and performance. Using longitudinal panel data of foreign subsidiaries, we find evidence that when host-country economic advantage is large, and the level of intangible asset intensity is high, the inverted U-shaped effect of product-similar subsidiary network is less pronounced. Moreover, host-country economic advantage and intangible asset intensity both enhance the positive effect of product-different subsidiary network. However, the moderating effect of intangible asset intensity is opposite to our prediction.
Diffusion barrier materials play an important role in both structure reliability and performance stability of thermoelectric (TE) modules. Preferred barrier materials are screened out from various candidates by comparing the interdiffusion at the barrier material/TE substrate interfaces. Traditionally, for each barrier material candidate, complicated fabrication processing of TE elements (electrode/barrier material/TE material) must be finished to obtain relative interfaces, which makes the screening costly and time consuming. In this article, using a high-throughput strategy, we developed a high-efficiency screening method of barrier materials. By cosintering the mixture of TE substrate material and various barrier material candidates simply following the TE material’s sintering parameters, various microinterfaces were integrated to one single sample. This enables parallel aging and microstructure characterization of different interfaces, and preferred barrier materials can be swiftly screened out. As a result, it makes the design and optimization of TE modules much more efficient and economical.
Chinese tallowtree [Triadica sebifera (L.) Small] has reached unprecedented prevalence in coastal landscapes in the Gulf of Mexico, especially along edge habitat with low competition and abundant resource (e.g., light) availability. This study investigated the spatiotemporal patterns and mechanisms of T. sebifera spread along roadways and fire lines. Triadica sebifera individuals and landscape and community features were surveyed in equally spaced, spatially mapped plots. All T. sebifera individuals were felled to determine tree age and status (seed trees or non-seed bearing trees), and T. sebifera seed and seedling (≤2 yr old) densities and community and landscape features (over- and understory conditions, distance to seed trees) were measured. A zero-inflated negative binomial model was used to evaluate factors affecting T. sebifera seed dispersal and seedling recruitment contributing to the observed spatiotemporal patterns. Introduced into the Grand Bay National Wildlife Refuge around 30 yr ago, T. sebifera trees distribute in clustered patterns along roadways and fire lines and exhibit an exponential growth in density. High T. sebifera seed and seedling densities mainly occurred in sites that are ≤250 m from seed trees or have sparse overstory and high understory grass/herb coverage. With respect to the avian seed dispersal mechanism, the spatiotemporal patterns of T. sebifera spread along roadways and fire lines could be simply characterized by using landscape and community features that influence avian behaviors, including distance to seed trees, overstory tree density, and ground grass/herb coverage.
The antennal sensilla of female Quadrastichus mendeli Kim & La Salle (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae: Tetrastichinae) were observed with scanning and transmission electron microscopy in this study. The antenna of Q. mendeli was geniculate, and the flagellum was composed of seven subsegments. Six distinct types of sensory receptors were observed, including sensilla basiconic capitate peg, sensilla böhm, sensilla chaetica, sensilla campaniformia, sensilla placodea and sensilla trichodea. Sensilla basiconic capitate pegs were found on the flagellomeres, and Böhm sensilla were found on the basal part of scape and the pedicel. Two morphological subtypes of sensilla chaetica were found on the antennae, and sensilla campaniformia were only found on the pedicel. Sensilla placodea were divided into two morphological subtypes that were found on the flagellomeres. Sensilla trichodea were found on the 2nd–6th flagellomere. By comparison to existing antennal sensilla, it was found that sensilla basiconic capitate peg, sensilla chaetica, sensilla placodea and sensilla trichodea were the most common sensilla of the parasitoids of Eulophidae. The external and internal morphology, types, number, distribution, length, and width of these sensilla were described, and their possible functions are discussed in conjunction with the host-detection behavior. Future studies on the host location mechanisms in Q. mendeli will be facilitated by these observations.
The three-dimensional microstructures of two conventional 316L stainless steels and a grain boundary (GB)-engineered version of the same steel have been characterized by using serial sectioning and electron backscatter diffraction mapping. The morphologies, area fractions, and number fractions of twin boundaries (TBs) were measured and compared, and the random boundary connectivity was evaluated. Although two-dimensional observations suggest that TBs are planar, occluded twin-grains and tunnel-shaped TBs were also observed. In addition, some large and morphologically complex TBs were observed in the GB-engineered sample, and these TBs were responsible for the increase in the twin area fraction that has been reported in past studies. While GB engineering increased the boundary area fraction, the TB number fraction was almost unchanged. Because the GB engineering process changed only the area fraction and not the number fraction, the connectivity of random boundaries was not disrupted.
Previous studies have indicated that some food items and nutrients are associated with uric acid metabolism in humans. However, little is known about the role of dietary patterns in hyperuricaemia. We designed this case–control study to evaluate the associations between dietary patterns and newly diagnosed hyperuricaemia in Chinese adults. A total of 1422 cases and 1422 controls were generated from 14 538 participants using the 1:1 ratio propensity score matching methods. Dietary intake was assessed using a validated self-administered FFQ. Dietary patterns were derived by factor analysis. Hyperuricaemia was defined as concentrations of serum uric acid higher than 7 mg/dl (416·5 μmol/l) for men and 6 mg/dl (357 μmol/l) for women. Three dietary patterns were derived by factor analysis: sweet pattern; vegetable pattern; animal foods pattern. The animal foods pattern characterised by higher intake of an animal organ, seafood and processed meat products was associated with higher prevalence of newly diagnosed hyperuricaemia (Pfor trend<0·01) after adjustment. Compared with the participants in the lowest quartile of the animal foods pattern, the OR of newly diagnosed hyperuricaemia in the highest quartile was 1·50 (95 % CI 1·20, 1·87). The other two dietary patterns were not associated with the prevalence of newly diagnosed hyperuricaemia after adjustment. In conclusion, a diet rich in animal organ, seafood and processed meat products is associated with higher prevalence of newly diagnosed hyperuricaemia in a Chinese population. Further cohort studies and randomised controlled trials are required to clarify these findings.
An Al–3% B master alloy has been subjected to equal channel angular pressing (ECAP). The grain refining performance and fading resistance of an Al–3% B master alloy on a commercial purity Al (CPA) have been evaluated. The effect of the number of ECAP passes on the size and the distribution of the AlB2 particles, the grain size of CPA ingots with and without adding the Al–3% B master alloy subjected to ECAP have been investigated. The mean size of AlB2 particles was significantly reduced from ∼34 to ∼12 μm after four ECAP passes. Fine blocky AlB2 particles were uniformly distributed in the Al matrix. It has been revealed that when it was inoculated by the Al–B master alloy subjected to ECAP, the grain size of α-Al was decreased from ∼1200 to ∼180 μm after four ECAP passes, beyond that, the grain size tends to be saturated. It has been proved that grain refinement efficiency and fading resistance of the Al–3% B master alloy subjected to ECAP in CPA ingots was enhanced.
The influences of non-Oberbeck–Boussinesq (NOB) effects on flow instabilities and bifurcation characteristics of Rayleigh–Bénard convection are examined. The working fluid is air with reference Prandtl number
and contained in two-dimensional rigid cavities of finite aspect ratios. The fluid flow is governed by the low-Mach-number equations, accounting for the NOB effects due to large temperature difference involving flow compressibility and variations of fluid viscosity and thermal conductivity with temperature. The intensity of NOB effects is measured by the dimensionless temperature differential
. Linear stability analysis of the thermal conduction state is performed. An
scaling of the leading-order corrections of critical Rayleigh number
and disturbance growth rate
due to NOB effects is identified, which is a consequence of an intrinsic symmetry of the system. The influences of weak NOB effects on flow instabilities are further studied by perturbation expansion of linear stability equations with regard to
, and then the influence of aspect ratio
is investigated in detail. NOB effects are found to enhance (weaken) flow stability in large (narrow) cavities. Detailed contributions of compressibility, viscosity and buoyancy actions on disturbance kinetic energy growth are identified quantitatively by energy analysis. Besides, a weakly nonlinear theory is developed based on centre-manifold reduction to investigate the NOB influences on bifurcation characteristics near convection onset, and amplitude equations are constructed for both codimension-one and -two cases. Rich bifurcation regimes are observed based on amplitude equations and also confirmed by direct numerical simulation. Weakly nonlinear analysis is useful for organizing and understanding these simulation results.
In high power laser facility for inertial confinement fusion research, final optics assembly (FOA) plays a critical role in the frequency conversion, beam focusing, color separation, beam sampling and debris shielding. The design and performance of FOA in SG-II Upgrade laser facility are mainly introduced here. Due to the limited space and short focal length, a coaxial aspheric wedged focus lens is designed and applied in the FOA configuration. Then the ghost image analysis, the focus characteristic analysis, the B integral control design and the optomechanical design are carried out in the FOA design phase. In order to ensure the FOA performance, two key technologies are developed including measurement and adjustment technique of the wedged focus lens and the stray light management technique based on ground glass. Experimental results show that the design specifications including laser fluence, frequency conversion efficiency and perforation efficiency of the focus spot have been achieved, which meet the requirements of physical experiments well.