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Adolescents have been largely neglected from tuberculosis control efforts. In low- to medium burden settings much of the tuberculosis burden in this age group occurs from school outbreaks. We report on a large tuberculosis outbreak in adolescents from a boarding high school in Jiangsu Province, China. From March to June 2018, a tuberculosis outbreak occurred in a boarding high school. We conducted an outbreak investigation involving clinical diagnostic tests and molecular analysis to determine the outbreak origin. Cases were detected through symptom screening, tuberculin skin testing (TST), chest radiography, sputum smear, solid sputum culture and GeneXpert MTB/RIF. Mycobacterial interspersed repetitive-unit-variable-number tandem-repeat (MIRU-VNTR) genotyping and spoligotyping methods were performed on Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M. tuberculosis) isolates to identify the outbreak origin. A total of 845 students and 131 teachers/staff attended a TST screening for tuberculosis infection. The prevalence of elevated tuberculin reactions at ≥5, ≥10 and ≥15 mm was 12.19% (119/976), 6.35% (62/976) and 3.28% (32/976), respectively. Radiographic abnormalities were present in 5.73% (56 of 976) individuals, 40 students and 16 teachers/staff. Of these, 12 students were diagnosed with confirmed tuberculosis. In total, 14 students (two index cases and 12 confirmed cases) were diagnosed and reported in the tuberculosis outbreak, an attack rate of 1.7% (14/847) among students (two index cases and 845 screened students). Results from MIRU-VNTR typing and spoligotyping analyses demonstrated that three M. tuberculosis strains belong to the Beijing family with corresponding MIRU-VNTR alleles. This school-based tuberculosis outbreak among adolescents demonstrates that transmission among individuals in this age group is common and must be prioritised. It suggests that identifying and timely diagnosis of smear-positive cases, especially in the early phase of outbreaks, is the key to preventing further spread among close contacts.
Seasonal influenza virus epidemics have a major impact on healthcare systems. Data on population susceptibility to emerging influenza virus strains during the interepidemic period can guide planning for resource allocation of an upcoming influenza season. This study sought to assess the population susceptibility to representative emerging influenza virus strains collected during the interepidemic period. The microneutralisation antibody titers (MN titers) of a human serum panel against representative emerging influenza strains collected during the interepidemic period before the 2018/2019 winter influenza season (H1N1-inter and H3N2-inter) were compared with those against influenza strains representative of previous epidemics (H1N1-pre and H3N2-pre). A multifaceted approach, incorporating both genetic and antigenic data, was used in selecting these representative influenza virus strains for the MN assay. A significantly higher proportion of individuals had a ⩾four-fold reduction in MN titers between H1N1-inter and H1N1-pre than that between H3N2-inter and H3N2-pre (28.5% (127/445) vs. 4.9% (22/445), P < 0.001). The geometric mean titer (GMT) of H1N1-inter was significantly lower than that of H1N1-pre (381 (95% CI 339–428) vs. 713 (95% CI 641–792), P < 0.001), while there was no significant difference in the GMT between H3N2-inter and H3N2-pre. Since A(H1N1) predominated the 2018–2019 winter influenza epidemic, our results corroborated the epidemic subtype.
The present paper presents a novel method to cope with the difficulty that an N-order filter can introduce a maximum number of transmission zeros (TZs) – no more than N. The method is described by a coupling topology and realized by a regular fully canonical filter structure to increase one more TZ for an N-order filter without any filter size increase. Besides, the TZ shift property, as another advantage of the proposed topology, is investigated. The coupling topology consists of a group of fully canonical coupling nodes with the harmonic node (non-resonating node (NRN)) excited by a λ/4 resonator. Owing to the unique coupling topology and coupling node distribution as well as the inclusion of an NRN, N + 1 TZs are generated by an N-order bandpass filter, while all the TZs are close to the passband and far away from the harmonic passband resulting the highly selective passbands. For demonstration, two-, three-, and four-order filters are designed and measured with the experimental results that confirm the proposed technique.
Litter size has a great impact on the profit of swine producers. Uterine development is an important determinant of reproduction efficiency and could hence affect litter size. Chinese Erhualian pig is one of the most prolific breeds in the world, even though large phenotypic variation in litter size was observed within Erhualian sows. To dissect the genetic basis of the phenotypic variation, we herein conducted genome-wide association studies for total number born and number born alive (NBA) of Erhualian sows. In total, one significant single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) (P<1.78e−06) and 11 suggestive SNPs (P<3.57e−05) were identified on 10 chromosomes, confirming seven previously reported quantitative trait loci (QTL) and uncovering six QTL for litter size or uterus length. One locus on Sus scrofa chromosome (SSC) 13 (79.28 to 90.43 Mb) harbored a cluster of suggestive SNPs associated with multiparous NBA. The SNP (rs81447100) within this region was confirmed to be significantly (P<0.05) associated with litter size in Erhualian (n=313), Sutai (n=173) and Yorkshire (n=488) populations. Retinol binding protein 2 and retinol binding protein 1 functionally related to the development of uterus were located in a region of 2 Mb around rs81447100. Moreover, four genes related to embryo implantation and development were also detected around other significant SNPs. Taken together, our findings provide a potential marker (rs81447100) for the genetic improvement of litter size not only in Chinese Erhualian pigs but also in European commercial pig breeds like Yorkshire, and would facilitate the final identification of causative variant(s) underlying the effect of SSC13 QTL on litter size.
Enterovirus A-71 (EV-A71) may be fatal, but the natural history, symptoms, and signs are poorly understood. This study aimed to examine the natural history of fatal EV-A71 infection and to identify the symptoms and signs of early warning of deterioration. This was a clinical observational study of fatal cases of EV-A71 infection treated at five Chinese hospitals between 1 January 2010 and 31 December 2012. We recorded and analysed 91 manifestations of EV-A71 infection in order to identify early prognosis indicators. There were 54 fatal cases. Median age was 21.5 months (Q1−Q3: 12–36). The median duration from onset to death was 78.5 h (range, 6 to 432). The multilayer perceptron analysis showed that ataxia respiratory, ultrahyperpyrexia, excessive tachycardia, refractory shock, absent pharyngeal reflex, irregular respiratory rhythm, hyperventilation, deep coma, pulmonary oedema and/or haemorrhage, excessive hypertension, tachycardia, somnolence, CRT extension, fatigue or sleepiness and age were associated with death. Autopsy findings (n = 2) showed neuronal necrosis, softening, perivascular cuffing, colloid and neuronophagia phenomenon in the brainstem. The fatal cases of enterovirus A71 had neurologic involvement, even at the early stage. Direct virus invasion through the neural pathway and subsequent brainstem damage might explain the rapid progression to death.
Lymphatic filariasis is a neglected tropical disease caused by roundworm parasites such as Brugia malayi that spread via a mosquito vector. In vitro culture of these parasites provides controlled conditions to understand parasite biology and provides a cheaper way to screen potential micro- and macrofilaricides. Published studies have used a wide array of approaches and metrics regarding in vitro cultures of B. malayi; as a result, drawing comparisons and identifying the reasons why inability to reproduce outcomes are difficult. This study sought to determine conditions that ensure reproducible outcomes and used evaluation metrics that are easily measured and can be automated to ensure objectivity. We found culturing B. malayi third-stage larvae (L3) in endothelial basal media supplemented with 20% fetal bovine serum and 75 µm ascorbic acid in a temperature- and humidity-controlled incubator produced better survival and molting rates as well as longer and more motile parasites than previously reported. The benefit of ascorbic acid seemed to be unique to L3 parasites, as the addition of ascorbic acid to adult parasites had no significant impact on survival or motility. The methods reported in this study will help in designing experiments for both parasite behaviour studies and drug screening applications for disease eradication.
The transient impact hypothesis was extended, and the oblique collision model was established by considering the tangential slip. In order to solve this problem, the oblique-impact equations for cam-follower were transformed into a linear complementarity problem. Impulsive control method was employed to control or anti-control the nonlinear responses. The simulation results show that the cam-follower system performs very complex nonlinear characteristics, such as period, quasi-period and chaos responses. Using the impulsive control method, the nonlinear responses of the cam-follower system can be controlled to P(n, n) and P(∞, n) or anti-controlled to chaos.
In this paper, a compact dual-band bandpass filter (DB-BPF) using new dual-mode resonator-loaded resonators (DM-RLRs) is presented and investigated to simultaneously achieve controllable return loss (RL), bandwidth (BW) and transmission zeros (TZs), and the simple strategy for this type of filter design is proposed. The DB-BPF consists of two high-flexibility DM-RLRs with separated electric and magnetic coupling (SEMC). Specifically, the proposed DM-RLR provides the DB-BPF with center frequency control as well as RL control, and SEMC is utilized for the BW and TZ control. To facilitate the design, a simple optimization-based design strategy is proposed and employed, resulting in an example layout. Finally, the example filter, with center frequencies of 1.57 GHz (channel 1 for GPS) and 3.5 GHz (channel 2 for WiMAX), is fabricated and measured. The measurement insertion loss and RL are 0.9/0.9 and 17/20 dB. The fabricated DB-BPF also exhibits a compact size of 0.12λg × 0.08λg at 1.57 GHz.
The majority of improvements to LIB technology have come through the development of new novel cathode materials. One promising cathode material is Li2FeSiO4 (LFS), desirable for its low cost and high theoretical capacity. However, the ionic conduction and transport mechanisms within this material are still not well understood, and require further investigation to improve upon cycling rate performance. To this end combined measurements of XRD & XANES have been performed in operando on LFS during electrochemical cycling, i.e. at selected electrochemical states of charge during the formation cycle the crystalline structure and the transition metal oxidation state as well as the site symmetry were characterized via the two aforementioned techniques. These in operando measurements expose once more a charging rate-dependent phase evolution during the formation cycle, which can be well characterized using a simplified equivalent circuit analogue.
Poor insight is prevalent in patients with schizophrenia and has been associated with acute illness severity, medication non-adherence and poor treatment outcomes. Paradoxically, high insight has been associated with various undesirable outcomes, including low self-esteem, depression and low subjective quality of life (QoL) in patients with schizophrenia. Despite the growing body of studies conducted in Western countries supporting the pernicious effects of improved insight in psychosis, which bases on the level of self-stigma, the effects are unclear in non-Western societies. The current study examined the role of self-stigma in the relationship between insight and psychosocial outcomes in a Chinese population.
A total of 170 outpatients with schizophrenia spectrum disorders were recruited from two general university hospitals. Sociodemographic data and clinical variables were recorded and self-report scales were employed to measure self-stigma, depression, insight, self-esteem and subjective QoL. Structural equation modelling (SEM) was used to analyse the cross-sectional data.
High levels of self-stigma were reported by 39% of the participants (n = 67). The influences of insight, self-stigma, self-esteem and depression on subjective QoL were confirmed by the SEM results. Our model with the closest fit to the data (χ2 = 33.28; df = 20; p = 0.03; χ2/df = 1.66; CFI = 0.98; TLI = 0.97; RMSEA = 0.06) demonstrated that self-stigma might fully mediate the association of insight with low self-esteem, depression and poor subjective QoL. High insight into illness contributed to self-stigma, which caused low self-esteem and depression and, consequently, low QoL. Notably, insight did not directly affect self-esteem, depression or QoL. Furthermore, the association of insight with poor psychosocial outcomes was not moderated by self-stigma.
Our findings support the mediating model of insight relevant to the poor psychosocial outcomes of individuals diagnosed with schizophrenia in non-Western societies, in which self-stigma plays a pivotal role. These findings elucidate the direct and indirect effects of insight on psychosocial outcomes and imply that identifying and correcting self-stigma in people with schizophrenia could be beneficial. Additional studies are required to identify whether several other neurocognitive or psychosocial variables mediate or moderate the association of insight with self-esteem, depression and QoL in patients with schizophrenia. Studies with detailed longitudinal assessments are necessary to confirm our findings.
We summarize work on the central parsec of the Galactic center based on imaging and spectroscopic observations at the Keck and Gemini telescopes. These observations include stellar positions in two dimension and the velocity in three dimensions. Spectroscopic observations also enables measurements of the physical properties of individual stars, such as the spectral type and in some cases the effective temperature, metallicity, and surface gravity. These observations show a complex stellar population with a young (4-6 Myr) compact star cluster in the central 0.5 pc embedded in in an older and much more massive nuclear star cluster. Surprisingly, the old late-type giants do not show a cusp profile as long been expected from theoretical work. The majority of the stars have higher than solar metallicity, with only about 6% of the stars having [M/Fe] < −0.5, which is consistent with an origin from the MW disk.
We present constraints on the variability and binarity of young stars in the central 10 arcseconds (~ 0.4 pc) of the Milky Way Galactic Center (GC) using Keck Adaptive Optics data over a 12 year baseline. Given our experiment’s photometric uncertainties, at least 36% of our sample’s known early-type stars are variable. We identified eclipsing binary systems by searching for periodic variability. In our sample of spectroscopically confirmed and likely early-type stars, we detected the two previously discovered GC eclipsing binary systems. We derived the likely binary fraction of main sequence, early-type stars at the GC via Monte Carlo simulations of eclipsing binary systems, and find that it is at least 32% with 90% confidence.
The Central Molecular Zone (CMZ), usually referring to the inner 500 pc of the Galaxy, contains a dozen of massive (~105M⊙) molecular clouds. Are these clouds going to actively form stars like Sgr B2? How are they affected by the extreme physical conditions in the CMZ, such as strong turbulence? Here we present a first step towards answering these questions. Using high-sensitivity, high angular resolution radio and (sub)millimeter observations, we studied deeply embedded star formation in six massive clouds in the CMZ, including the 20 and 50 km s−1 clouds, Sgr B1 off (as known as dust ridge clouds e/f), Sgr C, Sgr D, and G0.253 – 0.016. The VLA water maser observations suggest a population of deeply embedded protostellar candidates, many of which are new detections. The SMA 1.3 mm continuum observations reveal peaks in dust emission associated with the masers, suggesting the existence of dense cores. While our findings confirm that clouds such as G0.253 – 0.016 lack internal compact substructures and are quiescent in terms of star formation, two clouds (the 20 km s−1 cloud and Sgr C) stand out with clusters of water masers with associated dense cores which may suggest a population of deeply embedded protostars at early evolutionary phases. Follow-up observations with VLA and ALMA are necessary to confirm their protostellar nature.
The inner few hundred parsecs of the Milky Way, the Central Molecular Zone (CMZ), is our closest laboratory for understanding star formation in the extreme environments (hot, dense, turbulent gas) that once dominated the universe. We present an update on the first large-area survey to expose the sites of star formation across the CMZ at high-resolution in submillimeter wavelengths: the CMZoom survey with the Submillimeter Array (SMA). We identify the locations of dense cores and search for signatures of embedded star formation. CMZoom is a three-year survey in its final year and is mapping out the highest column density regions of the CMZ in dust continuum and a variety of spectral lines around 1.3 mm. CMZoom combines SMA compact and subcompact configurations with single-dish data from BGPS and the APEX telescope, achieving an angular resolution of about 4″ (0.2 pc) and good image fidelity up to large spatial scales.
The late-type stellar population in the Galactic Center was first predicted to reside in a dynamically relaxed cusp (power law slope ranging from 3/2 to 7/4). However, other works - which rely on models to correct for projection effects - have suggested a flat distribution instead. The need for this correction is due to the lack of information regarding the line-of-sight distances. With a two decade long baseline in astrometric measurements, we are now able to measure significant projected radial accelerations, six of which are newly reported here, which directly constrain line-of-sight distances. Here we present a statistical approach to take advantage of this information and more accurately constrain the shape of the radial density profile of the late-type stellar population in the Galactic Center.
The compact radio and near-infrared (NIR) source Sagittarius A* has been observed in the context of two NIR triggered global VLT and VLBA campaigns at 43 GHz (7 mm) on May 16-18 2012 and October 4 2014. While on October 4 2014 Sgr A* remained in a quiescent state, a NIR flare on May 17 2012 is accompanied by an increase in flux density of 0.22 Jy at 7 mm delayed by 4.5±0.5 h. Additionally, Sgr A* seems to develop a weak secondary radio off-core component of 0.02 Jy at a position angle of 140° and an angular distance of 1.5 mas shortly before the peak of the flare. This spatial extension and the time delay are in the range of expected values for events casually connected by adiabatic expansion.
We report mid-infrared images of several luminous infrared galaxies (LIGs) taken with ISOCAM on the Infrared Space Observatory (ISO). These LIGs were chosen to represent different phases of a merger sequence of galaxy-galaxy interaction with special emphasis on early/intermediate stages of merging. The molecular gas distribution of these LIGs has also been mapped at high spatial resolution (see contribution by Gao et al., this volume). The goal is to do a synoptic study of the evolution of physical conditions in these LIGs along the merger sequence.