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Obestatin is a gastrointestinal peptide having wide-ranging effects on cell proliferation; however, its mechanism of action remains poorly understood. Thus, the aim of the study was to elucidate the effect of exogenous obestatin on the postnatal structural development of the small intestine. Seven-day-old piglets with an average BW of 1.56 ± 0.23 kg were divided into four groups (n = 10) that received intragastrically obestatin (2, 10 or 15 μg/kg BW) or vehicle. After a 6-day experimental period, morphological analysis of gastrointestinal tract and small intestine wall (mitosis and apoptosis indexes, histomorphometry of mucosa and muscularis layers) was performed. The study revealed a seemingly incoherent pattern of the histological structure of the small intestine among the experimental groups, suggesting that the effect of obestatin is both intestinal segment specific and dose dependent. Histomorphometric analysis of the small intestine showed that higher doses of obestatin seem to promote the structural development of the duodenum while simultaneously hindering the maturation of more distal parts of the intestine. Intragastric administration of obestatin increased the crypt mitotic index in all segments of the small intestine with the strongest pro-mitotic activity following the administration of obestatin at a dose of 10 and 15 μg/kg BW. The significant differences in the number of apoptotic cells in the intestinal villi among the groups were observed only in proximal jejunum and ileum. In conclusion, it seems that obestatin shows a broad-spectrum of activity in the gastrointestinal tract of newborn piglets, being able to accelerate its structural development. However, the varied effect depending on the intestinal segment or the concentration of exogenous obestatin causes that further research is needed to clarify the exact mechanism of this phenomenon.
Variability in antidepressant response is due to genetic and environmental factors. Among genetic factors, the ones controlling for availability of the drug at the target site are interesting candidates. Rs6295C/G SNP for 5-HT1A gene (HTR1A) has been found to effect the expression and function of HTR1A In fact rs6295C/G was in strong linkage disequilibrium with other polymorphisms of HTR1A suggesting that those functional effects could be associated with polymorphisms other than the synonymous rs6295C/G. In the present study we examine the possible association of a panel of markers in strong linkage disequilibrium of the HTR1A with SSRI/SNRI response in 137 Japanese major depression sample followed for 6 weeks. We observed the significant association of better response to antidepressant with rs10042486C/C (p<0.0001), rs6295G/G (p<0.0001) and rs1364043T/T (p=0.018) genotype carriers, that is mutant allele homozygote, independently from clinical variables. Furthermore mutant allele homozygote carriers in all these 3 SNPs was associated more solidly with treatment response by various assessment such as HAM-D score change over time (p=0.001), week 2 (p<0.0001), 4(p=0.007), and 6(p=0.048) as well as response rate (p=0.0005) and remission rate (p=0.004).
In conclusion, this is the first study that reports the significant association of antidepressant response with rs10042486C/T and rs1364043G/T variants of HTR1A and also with rs10042486-rs6295-rs1364043 combination. This finding adds an important piece of information for the pathway of detecting the genetics of antidepressant response even if results must be verified on larger samples.
To examine the 17-year clinical outcome of schizophrenia and its predictors in Bali.
Subjects were 59 consecutively admitted first-episode schizophrenia patients. Their clinical outcome was evaluated by standardized symptomatic remission criteria based on Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS) scores and operational functional remission criteria at 17-year follow-up. The standardized mortality ratio (SMR) over 17 years was also calculated as another index of clinical outcome.
Among these 59 patients, 43 (72.9%) could be followed-up, 15 (25.4%) had died, and one (1.7%) was alive but refused to participate in the study. Combined remission (i.e. symptomatic and functional remission) was achieved in 14 patients (23.7% of original sample). Duration of untreated psychosis (DUP) was a significant baseline predictor of combined remission. Mean age at death of deceased subjects was 35.7, and SMR was 4.85 (95% CI: 2.4–7.3), indicating that deaths were premature. Longer DUP was associated with excess mortality.
The long-term outcome of schizophrenia in Bali was heterogeneous, demonstrating that a quarter achieved combined remission, half were in nonremission, and a quarter had died at 17-year follow-up. DUP was a significant predictor both for combined remission and mortality.
Catatonia is a complication of bipolar disorder, which is a constellation of symptoms such as catalepsy, mutism, and stupor. Standard therapy for catatonia contains benzodiazepines and electroconvulsive therapy. An uncomplicated catatonia is usually a benign condition. On the other hand, malignant catatonia is a life-threatening condition that is complicated with fever, autonomic instability, delirium, and rigidity. The syndrome is typically fulminant and progresses rapidly within a few days without appropriate intervention. Several previous reports suggested that some catatonia are associated with the overstimulation of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor, and that amantadine may have an effectiveness for catatonia, as a NMDA receptor antagonist. We report a case of successful treatment for malignant catatonia refractory to benzodiazepines, by using amantadine.
Materials and methods/case
A 64-year-old Japanese woman with bipolar disorder was referred to our hospital because of 8-week prolonged fever. On admission, she was in febrile and stuporous states. Severe rigidity was observed in her extremities. Blood tests, lumbar puncture, and blood cultures were all negative. Brain MRI was normal. Consequently, we reached a diagnosis of malignant catatonia, and thus we gave additional benzodiazepines for her catatonic symptoms. However, there was no improvement, and we finally add a 50 mg/day amantadine for her malignant catatonic state.
Her fever resolved in a few days. Gradual dose-titration of amantadine led her clinical manifestation to completely disappeared.
Amantadine can be a potential option as one of the pharmacological therapies for refractory malignant catatonia.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
The area of dry-season rice (Oryza sativa L.) has rapidly increased in Cambodia owing to the large-scale development of irrigation infrastructure. But little is known of potential productivity and adaptive crop management. The objective of our study was to evaluate potential yield and nutrient requirements of dry-season rice in Cambodia, and the economic feasibility of soil-specific management recommended by the government. Field experiments were conducted on four soil types (Bakan, equivalent to Alfisol; Krakor, Inceptisol; Prateah Lang, Plinthustalfs; and Toul Samroung, Endoaqualfs) in four provinces (Battambang, Kampong Thom, Pursat, and Siem Reap) during the 2016 and 2017 dry seasons to compare 14 (2016) and 8 (2017) N-P-K combinations. Grain yield ranged from 1.0 to 5.5 t ha−1 in 2016 and from 1.3 to 6.7 t ha−1 in 2017. Potential yield from the experiments was 6–7 t ha−1 on Toul Samroung soil, 5–6 t ha−1 on Bakan soil, and 3–5 t ha−1 on Prateah Lang and Krakor soils. A rate of 140-60-60 kg ha−1 of N-P2O5-K2O was more than enough to achieve the best yields on any soil group. On the other hand, modest application rates in soil-specific management (44–78 kg ha−1 of N, 23–28 kg ha−1 of P2O5, 0–30 kg ha−1 of K2O) proved reasonable for resource-poor farmers in Cambodia, since the treatment always provided >75 % of the highest economic profit in high-input plots.
Rice is widely grown in rainfed lowlands during the wet season in the Mekong region. Limited nutrient availability is a common constraint on crop yield, and the optimal rate of fertilizer application depends on the soil type. The objective of our study was to evaluate rice productivity and the economic feasibility of various nutrient management regimes in Cambodia. We conducted field experiments on three soil types (Prey Khmer, Prateah Lang, and Toul Samroung, equivalent to Psamments, Plinthustalfs, and Endoaqualfs, respectively) in four provinces (Battambang, Kampong Thom, Pursat, and Siem Reap) during the 2016 and 2017 wet seasons to compare nine (2016) and seven (2017) N–P–K combinations. Grain yield ranged from 0.9 to 4.8 t ha−1 in 2016 and from 1.0 to 5.2 t ha−1 in 2017, depending on soil type and nutrient management. The Prey Khmer soil contained around 80% sand, and rice yield responded most weakly to nutrient management. The moderate fertilizer input in the current soil-specific recommendation was effective on this soil type. However, on more fertile soils with a higher clay content and a higher cation-exchange capacity (Toul Samroung and Prateah Lang), an additional 20 kg N ha−1 combined with adding 15 kg ha−1 of P2O5 or 20 kg ha−1 of K2O significantly increased yield and economic return. Although P and K use during Cambodia’s wet season is uncommon, our results demonstrate the importance of these nutrients in improving the country’s rice production.
In the 2015 review paper ‘Petawatt Class Lasers Worldwide’ a comprehensive overview of the current status of high-power facilities of
was presented. This was largely based on facility specifications, with some description of their uses, for instance in fundamental ultra-high-intensity interactions, secondary source generation, and inertial confinement fusion (ICF). With the 2018 Nobel Prize in Physics being awarded to Professors Donna Strickland and Gerard Mourou for the development of the technique of chirped pulse amplification (CPA), which made these lasers possible, we celebrate by providing a comprehensive update of the current status of ultra-high-power lasers and demonstrate how the technology has developed. We are now in the era of multi-petawatt facilities coming online, with 100 PW lasers being proposed and even under construction. In addition to this there is a pull towards development of industrial and multi-disciplinary applications, which demands much higher repetition rates, delivering high-average powers with higher efficiencies and the use of alternative wavelengths: mid-IR facilities. So apart from a comprehensive update of the current global status, we want to look at what technologies are to be deployed to get to these new regimes, and some of the critical issues facing their development.
More than 10 Sub1 rice varieties carrying the submergence-tolerance gene have been released for flood-prone environments in tropical Asia. Improved management practices have been shown to enhance yields of these varieties. The objective of this study was to dissect the growth response of IR64-Sub1 to integrated crop management in a flash flood at the late vegetative stage. Field experiments were conducted at the International Rice Research Institute, Philippines in the dry and wet seasons of 2013. Complete submergence was imposed for 14 days starting at 37 days after transplanting. Integrated management practice (IMP) consisting of: (i) application of fertilizer (compared with no fertilizer use in conventional practice), (ii) use of lower seeding rate (400 vs. 800 kg ha−1) in the nursery bed, (iii) use of slightly older seedling for transplanting (30 vs. 18 day-old), and (iv) higher planting density (33.3 vs. 25.0 hills m−2) gave yields higher by 8–87% compared with the conventional practice (1.3–2.4 t ha−1) in both seasons. This was attributable to higher shoot biomass after water recession, more tillers m−2, greater leaf area expansion and shoot biomass accumulation during the recovery period, and higher filled-grain percentage at maturity. The improved management had no positive effect on panicle formation, spikelets panicle−1, and harvest index since stress was imposed at the transition period between vegetative and reproductive phases. Our results suggest the appropriate nursery management, for submergence-resilient seedlings to further alleviate damage caused by flash floods and increase the yield of Sub1 varieties in flood-prone rainfed lowlands.
Rutile grains occur extensively in host phases of biotite and quartz-feldspar aggregate in high-temperature paragneisses of the Mogok metamorphic belt of Myanmar. They occur as an isolated phase and sometimes show intergrowth texture with ilmenite. Most rutile grains contain up to 3.7 wt.% Nb2O5, which shows positive correlations with Fe and trivalent elements. Niobium substitutes for Ti by a coupled substitution with the trivalent cations (M3+) of Nb5+M3+Ti4+-2. Fine-grained rutile grains included in ilmenite are distinctly poor in Nb (<0.1 wt.% as Nb2O5) and contain Fe of 1.7–3.2 wt.% as Fe2O3, suggesting vacancybearing substitution of Fe3+4 Ti4+-3□–1, where □ indicates a vacancy. The rutile grains in the felsic phases contain high Zr contents of up to 4200 ppm, suggesting equilibrium temperatures over 800°C using the Ti-in-rutile geothermometer. These high-temperature conditions are consistent with those estimated by conventional methods reported in the literature and suggest widespread occurrences of the upperamphibolite and granulite facies metamorphic rocks in the middle segment of the Mogok metamorphic belt. In contrast, the Zr contents of rutile grains in biotite are usually <1000 ppm, implying equilibrium temperatures lower than 750°C. Most of the rutile grains poorer in Zr might have been included in biotite and were isolated from the zircon-bearing system during an early stage of prograde metamorphism. Some other rutile grains poorer in Zr might have been an exsolved phase from Ti-rich biotite during retrograde metamorphism, which was furthered by the infiltration of metamorphic fluid under lower-amphibolite facies conditions.
The Global Muon Detector Network (GMDN) is composed by four ground cosmic ray detectors distributed around the Earth: Nagoya (Japan), Hobart (Australia), Sao Martinho da Serra (Brazil) and Kuwait city (Kuwait). The network has operated since March 2006. It has been upgraded a few times, increasing its detection area. Each detector is sensitive to muons produced by the interactions of ~50 GeV Galactic Cosmic Rays (GCR) with the Earth′s atmosphere. At these energies, GCR are known to be affected by interplanetary disturbances in the vicinity of the earth. Of special interest are the interplanetary counterparts of coronal mass ejections (ICMEs) and their driven shocks because they are known to be the main origins of geomagnetic storms. It has been observed that these ICMEs produce changes in the cosmic ray gradient, which can be measured by GMDN observations. In terms of applications for space weather, some attempts have been made to use GMDN for forecasting ICME arrival at the earth with lead times of the order of few hours. Scientific space weather studies benefit the most from the GMDN network. As an example, studies have been able to determine ICME orientation at the earth using cosmic ray gradient. Such determinations are of crucial importance for southward interplanetary magnetic field estimates, as well as ICME rotation.
We report on the formation of shallow junctions with high activation in both n+/p and p+/n Ge junctions using ion implantation and Flash Lamp Annealing (FLA). The shallowest junction depths (Xj) formed for the n+/p and p+/n junctions were 7.6 nm and 6.1 nm with sheet resistances (Rs) of 860 ohms/sq. and 704 ohms/sq., respectively. By reducing knocked-on oxygen during ion implantation in the n+/p junctions, Rs was decreased by between 5% and 15%. The lowest Rs observed was 235 ohms/sq. with a junction depth of 21.5 nm. Hall measurements clearly revealed that knocked-on oxygen degraded phosphorus activation (carrier concentration). In the p+/n Ge junctions, we show that ion implantation damage induced high boron activation. Using this technique, Rs can be reduced from 475 ohms/sq. to 349 ohms/sq. These results indicate that the potential for forming ultra-shallow n+/p and p+/n junctions in the nanometer range in Ge devices using FLA is very high, leading to realistic monolithically-integrated Ge CMOS devices that can take us beyond Si technology.
The overview of the recent results for discovery and investigations of a very exotic phenomenon – optical mirage in the X-ray spectral range – is presented. It was found that the mirage could be created in the form of coherent virtual point source, emerging in the vicinity of the second plasma in two-stage oscillator-amplifier X-ray laser. The X-ray source-mirage, rigidly phased with the initial radiation of generator, occurs only when amplification takes place in the amplifier plasma and leads to the appearance of the interference pattern in the form of concentric rings in the spatial profile of the output X-ray laser beam. The equation describing the emergence of X-ray mirage was found, numerical solution of which shows that its formation is similar to that of the optical mirages observed at propagation of light rays through an inhomogeneously heated air. Obtained results have already demonstrated novel comprehension into the physical nature of amplification of X-ray radiation, opening additional opportunities for X-ray interferometry, holography, and other applications, which require multiple rigidly phased sources of coherent radiation.
The standard paradigm of structure formation in the universe, the cold dark matter cosmology, contains several crucial unsolved problems such as “cusp-core problem” and “too-big-to-fail problem”. To solve these problems, we study about the dynamical response of a virialized system with a central cusp to the energy feedback driven by periodic supernova feedback using collisionless N-body simulations with the Nested-Particle-Mesh code. The resonance between dark matter particles and the density wave excited by the oscillating potential plays a significant role in the cusp-core transition of dark matter halos. Furthermore, we show that the cusp-core transition with periodic supernova feedback can solve the too-big-to-fail problem.
We studied GeTe structures in topological switching random access memories (TRAMs) with a [GeTe/Sb2Te3] superlattice by using X-ray diffraction (XRD) analysis. We examined the electrical characteristics of the TRAMs deposited at different temperatures. We found that XRD spectra differed between the films deposited at 200 and 240°C and that the differences corresponded to the differences in the GeTe sequences in the films.
This paper describes an overview of our recent discovery – clear
demonstration that LiF crystals can be efficiently used as a high-performance neutron
imaging detector based on optically stimulated luminescence of color centers
generated by neutron irradiation. It is shown that the neutron images we have
obtained are almost free from granular noise, have a spatial resolution of
and a linear response with a dynamic range of at least
. The high contrast and good sensitivity of LiF crystals allow us to
distinguish two holes with less than 2% transmittance difference. We propose to use
such detectors in areas where high spatial resolution with high image gradation
resolution is needed, including diagnostics of different plasma sources such as laser
and z-pinch produced plasmas.
We report three-dimensional fluid-attenuated inversion recovery magnetic resonance imaging findings in a patient with relapsing polychondritis.
A 76-year-old woman initially presented with bilateral auricular swelling together with dyspnoea. Three months later, she experienced left hearing loss and recurrent vertigo. A biopsy of the auricle was performed and relapsing polychondritis was diagnosed. The patient underwent three-dimensional fluid-attenuated inversion recovery magnetic resonance imaging 4 hours after intravenous injection of a standard dose of gadolinium. Gadolinium enhancement was visible throughout the vestibule and the endolymphatic space could not be visualised, suggesting breakdown of the blood–labyrinth barrier.
This is the first radiological report to demonstrate breakdown of the blood–labyrinth barrier in a case of relapsing polychondritis with inner ear impairment.
The effects of N2O gas addition on the properties of zinc oxide films grown on a-plane (11-20) sapphire (a-Al2O3) substrates were investigated, using a chemical vapor deposition method based on the reaction between dimethylzinc and high-energy H2O produced by a Pt-catalyzed H2-O2 reaction. By employing an optimal N2O gas pressure, both the film crystallinity and crystal orientation were improved. Subsequent to treatment with N2O, the electron mobility of films at room temperature increased from 207 to 234 cm2/Vs while the electron concentration decreased at low temperatures. In addition, the photoluminescence peak intensity of the nearband-edge emission was increased.
A novel and fundamental method was reported to judge states of lithium ion batteries (LIBs) using the capacitance and the voltage of the cells that were estimated from the real-time currents and voltage characteristics of the cells. We measured the differential capacitance, that is, dQ/dV or delta Q/ delta V that is equal to the currents (I) divided by differential voltages (dV/dt) calculated from the current and the voltage characteristics of the cell during the charging/ discharging, where Q is the charge that flows through the cell, V is the voltage of the cell and t is time. It is thought that the capacitance decrease with the degradation of the cell because the effective area of the electrodes is decreasing due to formation of undesirable compounds. The differential capacitance in some specific voltage range for the LIBs was approximately directly proportional to the state of the degradation of the cell. Therefore, it is concluded that the novel method is very useful to judge the state of the LIBs.