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Echinococcus shiquicus is currently limited to the Qinghai–Tibet plateau, a large mountainous region in China. Although the zoonotic potential remains unknown, progress is being made on the distribution and intermediate host range. In this study, we report E. shiquicus within Gansu and Qinghai provinces in regions located not only around the central areas but also the southeast edge of the plateau and describe their genetic relationship with previous isolates from the plateau. From 1879 plateau pikas examined, 2.39% (95% CI 1.79–3.18) were infected with E. shiquicus. The highest prevalence of 10.26% (4.06–23.58) was recorded in Makehe town, Qinghai province. Overall the prevalence was marginally higher in Qinghai (2.5%, CI 1.82–3.43) than in Gansu (2%, CI 1.02–3.89). The cox1 and nad1 genes demonstrated high and low haplotype and nucleotide diversities, respectively. The median-joining network constructed by the cox1–nad1 gene sequences demonstrated a star-like configuration with a median vector (unsampled haplotype) occupying the centre of the network. No peculiar distinction or common haplotype was observed in isolates originating from the different provinces. The presence of E. shiquicus in regions of the southeast and northeast edges of the Qinghai–Tibet plateau and high genetic variation warrants more investigation into the haplotype distribution and genetic polymorphism by exploring more informative DNA regions of the mitochondrial genome to provide epidemiologically useful insight into the population structure of E. shiquicus across the plateau and its axis.
The aim of this study was to assess the current status of disease-related knowledge and to analyze the relationship among the general condition, illness perception, and psychological status of patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
A hospital-based cross-sectional study was conducted on 118 patients using convenience sampling. The general questionnaire, disease-related knowledge questionnaire of COVID-19, Illness Perception Questionnaire (IPQ), and Profile of Mood States (POMS) were used to measure the current status of participants.
The overall average score of the disease-related knowledge of patients with COVID-19 was (79.19 ± 14.25), the self-care situation was positively correlated with knowledge of prevention and control (r = 0.265; P = 0.004) and total score of disease-related knowledge (r = 0.206; P = 0.025); the degree of anxiety was negatively correlated with the knowledge of diagnosis and treatment (r = −0.182; P = 0.049). The score of disease-related knowledge was negatively correlated with negative cognition (volatility, consequences, emotional statements) and negative emotions (tension, fatigue, depression) (P < 0.05); positively correlated with positive cognition (disease coherence) and positive emotion (self-esteem) (P < 0.05).
It was recommended that we should pay more attention to the elderly and low-income groups, and increase the knowledge about diagnosis and treatment of COVID-19 and self-care in the future health education for patients.
To estimate the prevalence of thinness, overweight and obesity among Tibetan adolescents aged 12-17 years.
Shigatse city of Tibet municipality, with an average altitude of more than 4000 m.
Study participants included 2,642 adolescents aged 12-17 years selected from 6 schools using a convenient cluster sampling method.
The prevalence of thinness/overweight/obesity among Tibetan adolescents was 9.4%/5.4%/1.4% (China definition), 14.7%/4.4%/0.7% (IOTF definition), and 2.8%/5.7%/0.9% (WHO definition). The prevalence of thinness and overweight was significantly different between both sexes based on each of three BMI classification criteria (P <0.001). There was no significant difference in the prevalence of obesity between both sexes according to each of three BMI criteria. There was no clear trend in the prevalence of thinness across ages according to the China or IOTF definition (both P >0.05), whereas an upward trend was observed for thinness in boys according to the IOTF definition (P for trend <0.05). In contrast, the prevalence of thinness tended to decrease with increasing age in girls according to the IOTF definition, and in total sample according to the WHO definition (P for trend <0.05).
Among Tibetan adolescents, the prevalence of overweight and obesity is relatively low, while the prevalence of thinness is high, especially in boys. These data suggest urgent attention is needed to control adolescent thinness in Tibet.
The microstructure and texture evolution of Ni-5 at%W (Ni5W) alloy substrates were investigated by in situ tensile testing along the rolling direction (RD), transverse direction (TD), and at 45° to the RD (45°-RD), as well as by electron backscatter diffraction characterization. The tensile stress direction had a significant influence on the texture evolution. The cubic texture in the Ni-5 at%W alloy exhibited severe degradation when the tensile angle was 45°-RD. In contrast, the cubic texture was relatively stable under high deformation along the RD or TD. It was found that the slip line system in the 45°-RD specimen was the key to the contrasting behavior. The effect of the tensile testing angle on the cubic texture evolution for Ni–W substrates was investigated, and the corresponding effect on the superconducting properties of coated materials was studied.
A study was conducted to identify whether composted manure and straw amendments (replacement of a portion of chemical fertilizer [50% of the total nitrogen application] with composted pig manure, and straw return [all straw from the previous rice crop] combined with chemical fertilizer) compared with no fertilization and chemical fertilizer only would change the dominant species of wheat-associated weeds as well as influence their growth and seed yield in a rice (Oryza sativa L.)–wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) rotation system. The study was initiated in 2010, and the treatment effects on the species, density, plant height, shoot biomass, seed yield of dominant weeds, and wheat yields were assessed in 2017 and 2018. Fertilization significantly increased the height, density, and yield of wheat, as well as the shoot biomass of wheat-associated weeds, but decreased the weed species number. A total of 17 and 14 weed species were recorded in the experimental wheat fields in 2017 and 2018, respectively. The most dominant weed species were American sloughgrass [Beckmannia syzigachne (Steud.) Fernald] and catchweed bedstraw (Galium aparine L.), which made up more than 64% of the weed community in all treatments. When the chemical fertilizer application was amended with pig manure compost and straw return, the relative abundance of B. syzigachne significantly decreased, while the relative abundance of G. aparine significantly increased. The application of the chemical fertilizer-only treatment resulted in increases in the density, shoot biomass, and seed yield of B. syzigachne, while the composted manure and straw amendments applied together with chemical fertilizer led to significant increases in the density, shoot biomass, and seed yield of G. aparine. Consequently, further research on ways to promote greater cropping system diversity will be needed to prevent the selection of weed species that are adapted to a limited suite of crop management practices.
We aimed to examine whether baseline neutrophil counts affected the risk of new-onset proteinuria in hypertensive patients, and, if so, whether folic acid treatment is particularly effective in proteinuria prevention in such a setting. A total of 8208 eligible participants without proteinuria at baseline were analysed from the renal substudy of the China Stroke Primary Prevention Trial. Participants were randomised to receive a double-blind daily treatment of 10 mg of enalapril and 0·8 mg of folic acid (n 4101) or 10 mg of enalapril only (n 4107). The primary outcome was new-onset proteinuria, defined as a urine dipstick reading of ≥1+ at the exit visit. The mean age of the participants was 59·5 (sd, 7·4) years, 3088 (37·6 %) of the participants were male. The median treatment duration was 4·4 years. In the enalapril-only group, a significantly higher risk of new-onset proteinuria was found among participants with higher neutrophil counts (quintile 5; ≥4·8 × 109/l, OR 1·44; 95 % CI 1·00, 2·06), compared with those in quintiles 1–4. For those with enalapril and folic acid treatment, compared with the enalapril-only group, the new-onset proteinuria risk was reduced from 5·2 to 2·8 % (OR 0·49; 95 % CI 0·29, 0·82) among participants with higher neutrophil counts (≥4·8 × 109/l), whereas there was no significant effect among those with neutrophil counts <4·8 × 109/l. In summary, among hypertensive patients, those with higher neutrophil counts had increased risk of new-onset proteinuria, and this risk was reduced by 51 % with folic acid treatment.
Hydatid cyst is a serious parasitic infection in endemic areas. Cardiac hydatid cyst is not a common presentation, and primary pericardial hydatid cyst is rare. Echocardiography, CT, and MRI are important in diagnosing and locating cardiac echinococcosis. Herein, we present the case of an asymptomatic butcher with primary pericardial hydatid cyst and its successful treatment.
Reintroductions aim to re-establish a viable population within the indigenous range of living organisms, especially of threatened species. The population of the Asian Crested Ibis Nipponia nippon, a well-known ‘Endangered’ bird species, has increased over 100 times since wild populations were rediscovered in 1981, and several reintroduction projects were subsequently carried out in its former range. An experimental release of the Asian Crested Ibis was conducted in Qianhu National Wetland Park located in the southern part of the Loess Plateau, China. It is vitally important to monitor released birds (at least their survival and breeding), to inform subsequent releases in other suitable sites. During extensive post-release monitoring, data on capture-recapture and reproductive status were obtained using banding, radiotelemetry, and field observations. Using the Cormack-Jolly-Seber (C-J-S) model, the average annual survival rates were estimated to be 0.569 (95% CI: 0.353–0.762) for released individuals and 0.643 (95% CI: 0.038–0.987) for all individuals. From 2014 to 2018, a total of 14 breeding pairs produced 28 eggs and 10 fledglings with successful reproduction of the second generation. The mean clutch size was 2.07 ± 0.25 (n = 29), and the breeding success was 34.5%. Predation and poor habitat quality have been shown to be the main factors affecting the reintroduced population at establishment stage. Some management suggestions at the metapopulation and ecosystem levels, including further release, predator control and habitat improvement, have been proposed.
Eight bryozoan species are described from the Hanchiatien Formation (lower Silurian, Telychian) of southern Chongqing, South China. Four species are new: the trepostomes Asperopora sinensis n. sp., Trematopora jiebeiensis n. sp., and Trematopora tenuis n. sp., and the fenestrate Moorephylloporina parvula n. sp. One species, the cystoporate Hennigopora sp. indet., is described in open nomenclature. Moorephylloporina parvula n. sp. is eurytopic, occurring in all types of facies within the bioherms. Erect Moorephylloporina Bassler, 1952, Trematopora Hall, 1852, and Leioclema Ulrich, 1882 formed pioneering communities on weakly cemented substrata, whereas encrusting Fistulipora M‘Coy, 1849, Hennigopora Bassler, 1952, and Asperopora Owen, 1969 occurred on hardgrounds and formed densely compact framestones. Robust branched Trematopora and Leioclema tend to occur out of the reef core (framework) where they could have formed reef-flank thickets in more agitated conditions. The generic composition of the studied fauna correlates with other localities in South China, and they show general paleobiogeographic relations to Siberia and Indiana, USA.
Teenagers are important carriers of Neisseria meningitidis, which is a leading cause of invasive meningococcal disease. In China, the carriage rate and risk factors among teenagers are unclear. The present study presents a retrospective analysis of epidemiological data for N. meningitidis carriage from 2013 to 2017 in Suizhou city, China. The carriage rates were 3.26%, 2.22%, 3.33%, 3.53% and 9.88% for 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017, respectively. From 2014 to 2017, the carriage rate in the 15- to 19-year-old age group (teenagers) was the highest and significantly higher than that in remain age groups. Subsequently, a larger scale survey (December 2017) for carriage rate and relative risk factors (population density, time spent in the classroom, gender and antibiotics use) were investigated on the teenagers (15- to 19-year-old age) at the same school. The carriage rate was still high at 33.48% (223/663) and varied greatly from 6.56% to 52.94% in a different class. Population density of the classroom was found to be a significant risk factor for carriage, and 1.4 persons/m2 is recommended as the maximum classroom density. Further, higher male gender ratio and more time spent in the classroom were also significantly associated with higher carriage. Finally, antibiotic use was associated with a significantly lower carriage rate. All the results imply that attention should be paid to the teenagers and various measures can be taken to reduce the N. meningitidis carriage, to prevent and control the outbreak of IMD.
No studies have reported on how to relieve distress or relax in medical health workers while wearing medical protective equipment in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. The study aimed to establish which relaxation technique, among six, is the most feasible in first-line medical health workers wearing medical protective equipment.
This was a two-step study collecting data with online surveys. Step 1: 15 first-line medical health workers were trained to use six different relaxation techniques and reported the two most feasible techniques while wearing medical protective equipment. Step 2: the most two feasible relaxation techniques revealed by step 1 were quantitatively tested in a sample of 65 medical health workers in terms of efficacy, no space limitation, no time limitation, no body position requirement, no environment limitation to be done, easiness to learn, simplicity, convenience, practicality, and acceptance.
Kegel exercise and autogenic relaxation were the most feasible techniques according to step 1. In step 2, Kegel exercise outperformed autogenic relaxation on all the 10 dimensions among the 65 participants while wearing medical protective equipment (efficacy: 24 v. 15, no space limitation: 30 v. 4, no time limitation: 31 v. 4, no body position requirement: 26 v. 4, no environment limitation: 30 v. 11, easiness to learn: 28 v. 5, simplicity: 29 v. 7, convenience: 29 v. 4, practicality: 30 v. 14, acceptance: 32 v. 6).
Kegel exercise seems a promising self-relaxation technique for first-line medical health workers while wearing medical protective equipment among COVID-19 pandemic.
The present study was conducted to evaluate the impact of dietary fully oxidised β-carotene (OxBC, C40H60O15) supplementation during the perinatal period on immune status and productivity in a sow model. At day 85 of pregnancy, 150 sows were allocated to one of three dietary treatments with fifty sows per treatment. The three experimental diets were supplemented with 0, 4 or 8 mg/kg OxBC in the basal diet. The feeding trial was conducted from gestation day 85 until day 21 of lactation. Dietary OxBC supplementation greatly enhanced colostrum IgM, IgA and IgG levels, and the IgM and IgG content of 14-d milk. Dietary OxBC supplementation decreased the TNF-α and IL-8 levels in colostrum, as well as the TNF-α and IL-18 levels in 14-d milk. There was also a tendency towards an increase in the soluble CD14 level in 14-d milk. Although dietary treatments did not affect average daily feed intake nor backfat thickness loss during lactation, dietary OxBC supplementation tended to enhance litter weight and individual piglet weight at weaning. There was a trend towards increased lactose concentration in 14-d milk with increasing dietary OxBC. It is concluded that dietary supplementation with OxBC during the perinatal period enhances the lactose concentration of sow milk and the immune status of sows, which is reflected by improved cytokine status and immunoglobulin concentrations in colostrum and milk, and thus tending to increase litter weight and individual piglet weight at weaning. The results also provide a scientific nutritional reference for perinatal mothers due to the biological similarity between pigs and humans.
To investigate the cumulative effects of maternal supplementation with nucleotides in the form of uridine (UR) on fatty acid and amino acid constituents of neonatal piglets, fifty-two sows in late gestation were assigned randomly into the control (CON) group (fed a basal diet) or UR group (fed a basal diet with 150 g/t UR). Samples of neonates were collected during farrowing. Results showed that supplementing with UR in sows’ diet significantly decreased the birth mortality of pigs (P = 0·05), and increased serum total cholesterol, HDL and LDL of neonatal piglets (P < 0·05). Moreover, the amino acid profile of serum and liver of neonatal piglets was affected by the addition of UR in sows’ diets (P < 0·05). Furthermore, an up-regulation of mRNA expression of energy metabolism-related genes, including fatty acid elongase 5, fatty acid desaturase 1, hormone-sensitive lipase and cholesterol-7a-hydroxylase, was observed in the liver of neonates from the UR group. Additionally, a decrease in placental gene expression of excitatory amino acid transporters 2, excitatory amino acid transporter 3 and neutral AA transporter 1 in the UR group was concurrently observed (P < 0·05), and higher protein expression of phosphorylated protein kinase B, raptor, PPARα and PPARγ in placenta from the UR group was also observed (P < 0·05). Together, these results showed that maternal UR supplementation could regulate placental nutrient transport, largely in response to an alteration of mTORC1–PPAR signalling, thus regulating the nutrition metabolism of neonatal piglets and improving reproductive performance.
The present study investigated the association between fibre degradation and the concentration of dissolved molecular hydrogen (H2) in the rumen. Napier grass (NG) silage and corn stover (CS) silage were compared as forages with contrasting structures and degradation patterns. In the first experiment, CS silage had greater 48-h DM, neutral-detergent fibre (NDF) and acid-detergent fibre degradation, and total gas and methane (CH4) volumes, and lower 48-h H2 volume than NG silage in 48-h in vitro incubations. In the second experiment, twenty-four growing beef bulls were fed diets including 55 % (DM basis) NG or CS silages. Bulls fed the CS diet had greater DM intake (DMI), average daily gain, total-tract digestibility of OM and NDF, ruminal dissolved methane (dCH4) concentration and gene copies of protozoa, methanogens, Ruminococcus albus and R. flavefaciens, and had lower ruminal dH2 concentration, and molar proportions of valerate and isovalerate, in comparison with those fed the NG diet. There was a negative correlation between dH2 concentration and NDF digestibility in bulls fed the CS diet, and a lack of relationship between dH2 concentration and NDF digestibility with the NG diet. In summary, the fibre of CS silage was more easily degraded by rumen microorganisms than that of NG silage. Increased dCH4 concentration with the CS diet presumably led to the decreased ruminal dH2 concentration, which may be helpful for fibre degradation and growth of fibrolytic micro-organisms in the rumen.
In this paper, we use finite element analysis (FEA) to study the linear viscoelastic response of polyurea, a type of hard–soft block copolymer. A Niblack's algorithm-based technique employed on atomic force microscopy images provides geometry inputs for the FEA model, while the viscoelastic master curves of the soft matrix are obtained via a combination of dynamic mechanical analysis data and molecular dynamic (MD) estimations. In this microstructural image-based FEA framework, we introduce an interphase area of altered properties between the hard and soft domains. Both spatial and property distributions of this interphase area affect the viscoelastic response of the copolymer system. To quantitatively investigate the impact of structural and property features of the interphase on the energy storage and dissipation of a system during linear perturbation, we develop a statistical descriptor representation of the interphase region related to physical parameters. Utilizing decision-tree and random forest concepts from machine learning, we apply a ranking algorithm to identify the most significant features for four different mechanical response descriptors. Results show that the total interphase volume fraction and shifting factor distributions in the interphase area dominate the magnitude of the tan δ peak, whereas the magnitudes of the shifting factors primarily affect the tan δ peak location in frequency space. This method allows us to readily identify the dominant features impacting individual properties and paves the way for material design of hard–soft block copolymer systems.
This article reviews a selected sample of 70 empirical studies in journal articles and doctoral dissertations on language assessment in China between 2011 and 2018. Following a brief introduction to the history and current state of language assessment in China, the article presents a critical review of language assessment research on six themes that have aroused the greatest interest from researchers in the country, including (1) test reliability and validity; (2) factors affecting test performance; (3) rating and rating scales; (4) technology and language testing; (5) test washback; and (6) classroom-based assessment. In addition to situating the commentary on the studies within the social, cultural and historical contexts of China, this article outlines the scholarly contributions of these studies to the wider international field of language learning, teaching and assessment. It concludes with recommendations on areas in need of further development over the coming decades.
In this research communication we describe the DGAT1 sequence and promoter region in dairy cows and buffalo and compare the activities of DGAT1 between the two species in order to increase knowledge of the cause of milk fat variation. pGL-3 basic vectors were used to construct the reporter gene. Based on the predicted promoter region, 4 truncated plasmid vectors were constructed in cow-DGAT1 and 3 plasmid vectors in buffalo-DGAT1. Each reporter plasmid was transfected into the bovine mammary epithelial cell (BMEC), 293T cell, and CHO cells to analyze the activity using Dual-Luciferase Reporter Assay System. The results show that the region between −93 to −556 bp was essential for cow promoter activity while −84 to −590 bp was essential for buffalo promoter activity revealing these regions contain core promoter. The buffalo has higher promoter activity than cow yet it was not statistically significant. Comparison of candidate mutation K232A between cow and buffalo population revealed the presence of both the allelic population in dairy cows (lysine and alanine) however, only K (lysine) allelic amino acid was found in buffalo population. The absence of the alanine allelic population from buffalo explains the higher fat content of buffalo milk.
The current study compares the effects of two types of pronunciation instruction (segmental- and suprasegmental-based) on the development of second-year Chinese undergraduate students’ English pronunciation as against a group with no specific pronunciation (NSP) instruction. The participants were 90 university-level students in the Chinese mainland, from three intact classes. One class was taught with a segmental focus (N = 30) and the second with a suprasegmental focus (N = 31), while the third received NSP instruction (N = 29). The results showed that after an 18-week period of instruction, both the segmental and suprasegmental groups made statistically significant progress in pronunciation, as measured by comprehensibility on a sentence-reading task; however, only the suprasegmental group made statistically significant progress in comprehensibility at the spontaneous level, and it was also the only group that maintained these spontaneous gains on the delayed posttest. The positive effects of explicit pronunciation instruction in general and of suprasegmental instruction in particular account for the findings.
Advanced Ni8W/Ni12W/Ni8W alloy composite substrates used in YBCO-coated conductors with a strong cube texture and high yield strength have been fabricated, and a CeO2 buffer layer film was successfully deposited on the composite substrates. Through in situ tensile testing coupled with electron backscattered diffraction (EBSD) analysis, the stability of the cube texture of Ni8W/Ni12W/Ni8W alloy composite substrates has been investigated. The stress–strain curve shows that the yield strength (at 0.2% strain) of the composite substrates exceeds 250 Mpa. The orientation of grains and boundaries on the surface of the substrates was almost unchanged, while the strain exceeds 0.2%, which indicated that the composite substrates are adequate for depositing buffer layers and YBCO layers by the reel-to-reel process.