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Health system reform is considered a tough issue worldwide. Great efforts have been made toward health system building and strengthening. However, it is still unclear which health system is appropriate for different countries. This study aimed to systematically compare the characteristics of the establishment periods between eighty-eight counties of National Health Service (NHS) and Social Health Insurance (SHI).
Forty-eight NHS countries and forty SHI countries with data availability were selected. The establishment years of current health systems and other eighteen indicators in economics, society, population and health during establishment periods were collected. Comparison between NHS and SHI was conducted by descriptive analysis of every indicator.
Most NHS countries were established during the cold war, while SHI had been set up since the cold war ended. The median of gross domestic product (GDP) per capita, urbanization rate and aging rate of SHI were USD 1535 in current dollars, 58.2 percent and 9.8 percent, respectively; compared with USD 1387, 41.2 percent and 4.7 percent, respectively of NHS. NHS countries had a smaller total population, lower mortality rate and elderly dependency ratio, while the birth rate and children's dependency ratio were higher. SHI countries showed a higher life expectancy and lower mortality rate in infants and children. NHS countries spent less in total health expenditure and a lower proportion of GDP. The median health expenditure per capita of SHI and NHS were USD 188 and USD 131 in current dollars, respectively. There was little difference among maternal mortality rates, and public and private health expenditure proportions.
NHS and SHI countries had different characteristics during the health system establishment periods. NHS was established earlier than SHI overall, so that SHI revealed higher levels in economic and social development. Health outcomes of NHS countries were slightly lower than SHI ones, while health expenditure was more in SHI countries. Specific social, economic, demographic and health conditions should be considered when countries are building their own health systems.
A novel generalised successive overrelaxation (GSOR) method for solving generalised saddle point problems is proposed, based on splitting the coefficient matrix. The proposed method is shown to converge under suitable restrictions on the iteration parameters, and we present some illustrative numerical results.
The bioavailability of dietary ionised calcium is affected by intestinal basic environment. Calcium-binding peptides can form complexes with calcium to improve its absorption and bioavailability. The aim of this study was focused on isolation and characterisation of a calcium-binding peptide from whey protein hydrolysates. Whey protein was hydrolysed using Flavourzyme and Protamex with substrate to enzyme ratio of 25 : 1 (w/w) at 49 °C for 7 h. The calcium-binding peptide was isolated by DEAE anion-exchange chromatography, Sephadex G-25 gel filtration and reversed phase high-performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC). A purified peptide of molecular mass 204 Da with strong calcium binding ability was identified on chromatography/electrospray ionisation (LC/ESI) tandem mass spectrum to be Glu-Gly (EG) after analysis and alignment in database. The calcium binding capacity of EG reached 67·81 μg/mg, and the amount increased by 95% compared with whey protein hydrolysate complex. The UV and infrared spectrometer analysis demonstrated that the principal sites of calcium-binding corresponded to the carboxyl groups and carbonyl groups of glutamic acid. In addition, the amino group and peptide amino are also the related groups in the interaction between EG and calcium ion. Meanwhile, the sequestered calcium percentage experiment has proved that EG-Ca is significantly more stable than CaCl2 in human gastrointestinal tract in vitro. The findings suggest that the purified dipeptide has the potential to be used as ion-binding ingredient in dietary supplements.
Reduced graphene oxide–nickel ferrite (RGO–NiFe2O4) has been successfully synthesized by the hydrothermal method in the presence of poly(diallyldimethylammonium chloride) (PDDA). PDDA is used both as a reducing agent and as a stabilizer. The prepared RGO–NiFe2O4 nanocomposites have been thoroughly characterized by spectroscopic (Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy, Raman spectroscopy, and x-ray diffraction) and thermogravimetric analysis. Microscopy techniques (scanning electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy, and transmission electron microscopy) were used to probe the morphological structures as well as to investigate the exfoliation of RGO sheets. It is interesting to find that RGO–NiFe2O4 nanocomposites exhibited much better electrochemical capability than NiFe2O4. In addition, the as-prepared RGO–NiFe2O4 nanocomposites can effectively remove methyl orange from water under ultraviolet light irradiation, which can be used as novel photocatalysts for environmental protection.
Bi2O2CO3/ZnWO4 composite photocatalysts have been successfully synthesized by a mixed calcination method after hydrothermal process. The catalysts were characterized by powder x-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, high resolution transmission electron microscopy, x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, and UV-vis diffuse reflectance spectrum. The results showed that the hierarchical Bi2O2CO3/ZnWO4 nanocomposites were obtained by mixed grinding calcination method and Bi2O2CO3 nanospheres grow on the primary ZnWO4 particles. The Bi2O2CO3/ZnWO4 composites exhibit higher photocatalytic activities compared to pure ZnWO4 and Bi2O2CO3 particles under UV light irradiation. Furthermore, the excellent photocatalytic efficiency of the Bi2O2CO3/ZnWO4 composite was deduced closely related to Bi2O2CO3/ZnWO4 heterojunctions whose presence is generally regarded to be a favorable factor for the separation of photogenerated electrons and holes.
Novel europium- and gadolinium-doped bismuth phosphate (Eu/BiPO4 and Gd/BiPO4) microcrystals have been synthesized by a hydrothermal route. The morphologies and optical properties of the as-prepared samples were characterized carefully. Their photocatalytic activities were determined by oxidative decomposition of methylene blue (MB) in aqueous solution. The results revealed that europium and gadolinium doping greatly improves the photocatalytic efficiency of BiPO4 microcrystals. Among these as-prepared europium and gadolinium dopant samples, 1% Eu/BiPO4 and 5% Gd/BiPO4 displayed the highest photocatalytic activity, and the degradation rates are 2 and 2.7 times greater than pure BiPO4, respectively. The photodegradation reactions of MB by Eu- and Gd-BiPO4 followed first-order kinetics. The different photocatalytic mechanisms of Eu/BiPO4 and Gd/BiPO4 photocatalysts are discussed.
The Ultra-Fast Flash Observatory (UFFO) is a space observatory for optical follow-ups of
gamma ray bursts (GRBs), aiming to explore the first 60 seconds of GRBs optical emission.
UFFO is utilized to catch early optical emissions from GRBs within few sec after trigger
using a Gimbal mirror which redirects the optical path rather than slewing entire
spacecraft. We have developed a 15 cm two-axis Gimbal mirror stage for the UFFO-Pathfinder
which is going to be on board the Lomonosov satellite which is to be launched in 2013. The
stage is designed for fast and accurate motion with given budgets of 3 kg of mass and 3
Watt of power. By employing stepping motors, the slewing mirror can rotate faster than 15
deg/sec so that objects in the UFFO coverage (60 deg × 60 deg) can be targeted in
~1 sec. The obtained targeting resolution is better 2 arcmin using a close-loop
control with high precision rotary encoder. In this presentation, we will discuss details
of design, manufacturing, space qualification tests, as well as performance tests.
The Slewing Mirror Telescope (SMT) is the UV/optical telescope of UFFO-pathfinder. The
SMT optical system is a Ritchey-Chrétien (RC) telescope of 100 mm diameter pointed by
means of a gimbal-mounted flat mirror in front of the telescope. The RC telescope has a
17 × 17arcmin2 in Field of View and 4.3 arcsec resolution (full width half
maximum of the point spread function) The beam-steering mirror enables the SMT to access a
35 × 35degree region and point and settle within 1 sec. All mirrors were fabricated to
about 0.02 wavelengths RMS in wave front error (WFE) and 84.7% average reflectivity over
200 nm ~ 650 nm. The RC telescope was aligned to 0.05 wavelengths RMS in WFE (test
wavelength 632.8 nm). In this paper, the technical details of the RC telescope and slewing
mirror system assembly, integration, and testing are given shortly, and performance tests
of the full SMT optical system are reported.
The UFFO (Ultra-Fast Flash Observatory) is a GRB detector on board the Lomonosov
satellite, to be launched in 2013. The GRB trigger is provided by an X-ray detector,
called UBAT (UFFO Burst Alarm & Trigger Telescope), which detects X-rays from the GRB
and then triggers to determine the direction of the GRB and then alerts the Slewing Mirror
Telescope (SMT) to turn in the direction of the GRB and record the optical photon fluxes.
This report details the calibration of the two components: the MAPMTs and the YSO crystals
and simulations of the UBAT. The results shows that this design can observe a GRB within a
field of view of ±35° and can trigger in a time scale as short as 0.2 – 1.0 s
after the appearance of a GRB X-ray spike.
One of the key aspects of the upcoming Ultra-Fast Flash Observatory (UFFO) pathfinder for
Gamma Ray Bursts (GRBs) identification is the UFFO Burst Alert & Trigger Telescope
(UBAT). The scientific propose of UBAT is to detect and locate as fast as possible the
GRBs in the sky. This is achieved by using a coded mask aperture camera scheme with a wide
field of view (FOV) and selecting a X-ray detector of high quantum efficiency and large
detection area. This X-ray detector of high quantum efficiency and large detection area is
called the UBAT detector. The UBAT detector consists of 48 × 48 Yttrium Oxyorthosilicate
(YSO) scintillator crystal arrays and Multi Anode Photomultiplier Tubes (MAPMTs), analog
electronics equipped with ASIC chips, digital electronics equipped with Field Programmable
Gate Array (FPGA) chips, and a mechanical structure that supports all components of the
UBAT detector. The total number of the pixels in the UBAT detector is 2304, and the total
effective detection area is 191 cm2. We will present the design and
construction, and performance of the UBAT detector including the responses of the UBAT
detector to X-ray sources.
The Ultra-Fast Flash Observatory (UFFO) aims to detect the earliest moment of Gamma-Ray
Bursts (GRBs) which is not well known, resulting into the enhancement of GRB mechanism
understanding. The pathfinder mission was proposed to be a scaled-down version of UFFO,
and only contains the UFFO Burst Alert & Trigger Telescope (UBAT) measuring the
X-ray/gamma-ray with the wide-field of view and the Slewing Mirror Telescope (SMT) with a
rapid-response for the UV/optical photons. Once the UBAT detects a GRB candidate with the
position accuracy of 10 arcmin, the SMT steers the UV/optical photons from the candidate
to the telescope by the fast rotatable mirror and provides the early UV/optical photons
measurements with 4 arcsec accuracy. The SMT has a modified Ritchey-Chrètien telescope
with the aperture size of 10 cm diameter including the rotatable mirror and the image
readout by the intensified charge-coupled device. There is a key board called the UFFO
Data Acquisition system (UDAQ) that manages the communication of each telescope and also
of the satellite and the UFFO overall operation. This pathfinder is designed and built
within the limited size and weight of ~20 kg and the low power consumption up to
~30 W. We will discuss the design and performance of the UFFO-pathfinder, and its
integration to the Lomonosov satellite.
The Ultra-Fast Flash Observatory (UFFO), which will be launched onboard the
Lomonosov spacecraft, contains two crucial instruments: UFFO Burst
Alert & Trigger Telescope (UBAT) for detection and localization of Gamma-Ray Bursts
(GRBs) and the fast-response Slewing Mirror Telescope (SMT) designed for the observation
of the prompt optical/UV counterparts. Here we discuss the in-space calibrations of the
UBAT detector and SMT telescope. After the launch, the observations of the standard X-ray
sources such as pulsar in Crab nebula will provide data for necessary calibrations of
UBAT. Several standard stars will be used for the photometric calibration of SMT. The
celestial X-ray sources, e.g. X-ray binaries with bright optical sources
in their close angular vicinity will serve for the cross-calibration of UBAT and SMT.
The Ultra-Fast Flash Observatory (UFFO) Pathfinder for Gamma-Ray Bursts (GRBs) consists
of two telescopes. The UFFO Burst Alert & Trigger Telescope (UBAT) handles the
detection and localization of GRBs, and the Slewing Mirror Telescope (SMT) conducts the
measurement of the UV/optical afterglow. UBAT is equipped with an X-ray detector, analog
and digital signal readout electronics that detects X-rays from GRBs and determines the
location. SMT is equipped with a stepping motor and the associated electronics to rotate
the slewing mirror targeting the GRBs identified by UBAT. First the slewing mirror points
to a GRB, then SMT obtains the optical image of the GRB using the intensified CCD and its
readout electronics. The UFFO Data Acquisition system (UDAQ) is responsible for the
overall function and operation of the observatory and the communication with the satellite
main processor. In this paper we present the design and implementation of the electronics
of UBAT and SMT as well as the architecture and implementation of UDAQ.
One of the unexplored domains in the study of gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) is the early time
phase of the optical light curve. We have proposed Ultra-Fast Flash Observatory (UFFO) to
address this question through extraordinary opportunities presented by a series of small
space missions. The UFFO is equipped with a fast-response Slewing Mirror Telescope that
uses a rapidly moving mirror or mirror array to redirect the optical beam rather than
slewing the entire spacecraft or telescope to aim the optical instrument at the GRB
position. The UFFO will probe the early optical rise of GRBs with sub-second response, for
the first time, opening a completely new frontier in GRB and transient studies. Its fast
response measurements of the optical emission of dozens of GRB each year will provide
unique probes of the burst mechanism and test the prospect of GRB as a new standard
candle, potentially opening up the z > 10 universe. We describe the current limit in
early photon measurements, the aspects of early photon physics, our soon-to-be-launched
UFFO-pathfinder mission, and our next planned mission, the UFFO-100.
Male and female Schistosoma japonicum worms have dissimilar appearances in their final host. In this study, a morphometric and morphological assessment of whole worms derived from unisexual and mixed infections in mice was conducted using confocal laser scanning microscopy. Worms from mixed infections showed significant morphological changes between 15 and 25 days post-infection (PI). On the fifteenth day PI, 33% of males had formed the conspicuous gynecophoric canal, but only 8% of them had testicular lobes containing a few germinative cells; 13% of females had incipient ovaries with a few immature ovarian cells inside. On the twentieth day PI, the testicular lobes contained more germinative cells in all male worms, while female worms presented vitelline glands. On the twenty-fifth day PI, more germinative cells were observed in the male testicular lobes, and differentiated cells were present in the female ovaries. All worms had fully developed reproductive organs from 30 days PI onwards. Morphometric analysis showed significant differences between mixed and unisexual infections at 35 days PI. Ovaries of worms from unisexual infections contained cells in one stage of maturation and vitelline glands had undifferentiated cells. Our study of S. japonicum provides a detailed comparison of different morphological traits from worms of mixed and unisexual infections throughout development.
The Ultra-Fast Flash Observatory (UFFO) is a space mission to detect the early moments of an explosion from Gamma-ray bursts (GRBs), thus enhancing our understanding of the GRB mechanism. It consists of the UFFO Burst & Trigger telescope (UBAT) for the recognition of GRB positions using hard X-ray from GRBs. It also contains the Slewing Mirror Telescope (SMT) for the fast detection of UV-optical photons from GRBs. It is designed to begin the UV-optical observations in less than a few seconds after the trigger. The UBAT is based on a coded-mask X-ray camera with a wide field of view (FOV) and is composed of the coded mask, a hopper and a detector module. The SMT has a fast rotatable mirror which allows a fast UV-optical detection after the trigger. The telescope is a modified Ritchey-Chrétien telescope with the aperture size of 10 cm diameter, and an image intensifier readout by CCD. The UFFO pathfinder is scheduled to launch into orbit on 2012 June by the Lomonosov spacecraft. It is a scaled-down version of UFFO in order to make the first systematic study of early UV/optical light curves, including the rise phase of GRBs. We expect UBAT to trigger ~44 GRBs/yr and expect SMT to detect ~10 GRBs/yr.
Glacial deposits are present at the head of the Ürümqi River valley, Tianshan, Central Asia. 10Be surface exposure ages of 15 boulders from three sites along a 12 km valley transect range from 9 to 21 ka suggesting emplacement by glacial retreat and advance commencing at the global last glacial maximum (LGM) and most likely abating in the early Holocene. Although the age spread for a given locality is not small, perhaps indicating post-depositional reworking, maximum ages per site are either coeval with or are post-LGM and inconsistent with previous pre-LGM electron spin resonance ages.
Cosmogenic 10Be and 26Al measurements from bedrock exposures in East Antarctica provide indications of how long the rock surface has been free from glacial cover. Samples from the crests of Zakharoff Ridge and Mount Harding, two typical nunataks in the Grove Mountains, show minimum 10Be ages of 2.00 ± 0.22 and 2.30 ± 0.26 Ma, respectively. These ages suggest that the crests were above the ice sheet at least since the Plio–Pleistocene boundary. Adopting a ‘reasonable’ erosion rate of 5–10 cm Ma-1 increases the exposure ages of these two samples to extend into the mid-Pliocene. The bedrock exposure ages steadily decrease with decreasing elevation on the two nunataks, which indicates ~200 m decrease of the ice sheet in the Grove Mountains since mid-Pliocene time. Seven higher elevation samples exhibit a simple exposure history, which indicates that the ice sheet in the Grove Mountains decreased only ~100 m over a period as long as 1–2 Ma. This suggests that the East Antarctic Ice Sheet (EAIS) was relatively stable during the Pliocene warm interval. Five lower elevation samples suggest a complex exposure history, and indicate that the maximum subsequent increase of the EAIS was only 100 m higher than the present ice surface. Considering the uncertainties, their total initial exposure and subsequent burial time could be later than mid-Pliocene, which may not conflict with the stable mid-Pliocene scenario.
Genomic RNA was extracted from the subcutaneous adipose tissue of piglets (Duroc×Landrace×Tai-hu) at 1, 14, 28, 42 and 56 days of age, and obese gene (ob) mRNA was amplified using reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). A DNA fragment of about 504 bp was obtained and the PCR product was cloned into a pGEM-T vector. The ob gene was isolated and sequenced from the positive clones screened. Sequence analysis suggested that this fragment was a partial sequence of ob cDNA, coding 167 amino acid residues, which constituted the major part of leptin mature protein. The gene homology of the fragment obtained in this study compared to the reported ob cDNA sequence in adipocytes of pig was 99.405%, and amino acid homology was 98.94%. Based on the ob gene clone, we successfully constructed an optimal semi-quantitative RT-PCR method. Using β-actin as the internal control, we investigated the difference of ob gene expression at different ages of piglets. Results showed that ob mRNA levels increased steadily at postnatal days 1–28 (preweaning), peaked at postnatal day 28, when piglets were weaned, and decreased from day 28 to 56.
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