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Glutamine synthetase (GS) and glutamate synthase (GOGAT) play a central role in plant nitrogen (N) metabolism. In order to study the effect of powdery mildew (Blumeria graminis f. sp. tritici, Bgt) on N metabolism, field experiments were carried out to evaluate GS and GOGAT activity, GS expression and grain protein content (GPC) in susceptible (Xi'nong 979) and resistant (Zhengmai 103) wheat cultivars under three treatments. The three treatments were no inoculation (CK), inoculated once with Bgt (MP) and inoculated nine times with Bgt (HP). For Xi'nong 979, the activities of GS and GOGAT in grains as well as GS activity in flag leaves increased at 10–15 days after anthesis (DAA), and decreased significantly at 15 or 20–30 DAA in HP and MP. However, GS activity in grains decreased from 20 DAA, which was later than that of flag leaves (15 DAA). At the same time, GS expression in grains was up-regulated at early stage, with GS1 at 10 DAA and GS2 at 15 DAA, followed by a continuous down-regulation. This result indicated that GS and GOGAT activity as well as GS expression were inhibited by powdery mildew, indicating that N metabolism in grains was inhibited at 20–30 DAA. The current study also found out that the yield of the susceptible cultivar decreased significantly, while its GPC increased obviously in HP. It was shown that the increase of GPC was not due to the enhancement of N metabolism, but due to the passive increase caused by yield reduction.
In this study, a new assemblage of Ediacaran metazoan fossils is reported from the basal Stáhpogieddi Formation on the Digermulen Peninsula of Arctic Norway, including Anulitubus n. gen. Moczydłowska in Moczydłowska et al., Anulitubus formosus n. gen. n. sp. Moczydłowska in Moczydłowska et al., Coniculus n. gen. Moczydłowska in Moczydłowska et al., Coniculus elegantis n. gen. n. sp. Moczydłowska in Moczydłowska et al., Fistula n. gen. Moczydłowska in Moczydłowska et al., and Fistula crenulata n. gen. n. sp. Moczydłowska in Moczydłowska et al. The specimens are three-dimensionally preserved and include tubular and conical skeletons that are morphologically distinguished by their body-wall constructions, radial symmetry, polarity, segmentation, and annulation. The skeletons are interpreted to be biomineralized by primary silica based on computed micro-tomographic, petrographic, geochemical, and spectroscopic evidence of originally rigid body wall with layers of constant thicknesses, composed of opal, microcrystalline quartz, and an admixture of carbonaceous material, which differ from the host sediment mineralogy and do not show replacement or encrustation. The fossil-bearing interval immediately overlies strata of Gaskiers age and can be bracketed within 580–541 Ma, but it is estimated to be ca. 575 Ma on the basis of averaged sedimentation rates and biostratigraphic correlations with Ediacaran biota found in up-section deposits of ca. 558–555 Ma. Future new findings of such fossils in different preservation modes and further multi-collector inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry, which shows the silicon fractionation and traces its biogenic origin versus inorganic mineralization, may corroborate the interpretation of biogenic silicification of these earliest skeletal fossils.
Previous studies have revealed associations of meteorological factors with tuberculosis (TB) cases. However, few studies have examined their lag effects on TB cases. This study was aimed to analyse nonlinear lag effects of meteorological factors on the number of TB notifications in Hong Kong. Using a 22-year consecutive surveillance data in Hong Kong, we examined the association of monthly average temperature and relative humidity with temporal dynamics of the monthly number of TB notifications using a distributed lag nonlinear models combined with a Poisson regression. The relative risks (RRs) of TB notifications were >1.15 as monthly average temperatures were between 16.3 and 17.3 °C at lagged 13–15 months, reaching the peak risk of 1.18 (95% confidence interval (CI) 1.02–1.35) when it was 16.8 °C at lagged 14 months. The RRs of TB notifications were >1.05 as relative humidities of 60.0–63.6% at lagged 9–11 months expanded to 68.0–71.0% at lagged 12–17 months, reaching the highest risk of 1.06 (95% CI 1.01–1.11) when it was 69.0% at lagged 13 months. The nonlinear and delayed effects of average temperature and relative humidity on TB epidemic were identified, which may provide a practical reference for improving the TB warning system.
Laboratory experiments are conducted to investigate the mechanism controlling the formation of stable and unstable acoustic fountains at the free surface of a quiescent body of water. Fountains are induced by focused ultrasonic, a new modality that allows for better spatiotemporal control of water flow. Particle image velocimetry was used to characterize the induced flow field in the vicinity of the ultrasonic focal spot. We used two types of ultrasonic transducers with distinct wave frequencies. We examined three fountain formation regimes by varying the pressure level of the transducers, namely weak, intermediate (stable) and highly forced fountains (explosive). Between different regimes, the fountain height underwent a step-change in response to the increase in acoustic pressure. A force estimation obtained from the flow field shows that the magnitude of axial momentum flux is orders of magnitude lower than that of gravity and surface tension, indicating that the dominant driving force for the fountain generation is the acoustic radiation force (Nightingale et al., Ultrasound Med. Biol., vol. 28, 2002, pp. 227–235). We propose a simple model to estimate the shape of a stable fountain; it accounts for the applied acoustic pressure, gravity, surface tension and axial momentum. The model neglects viscous force, which precludes capturing the intermediate fountain surface curvature. However, the model successfully predicts the geometry of the weak and intermediate fountains.
Despite the numerous challenges of ageing in a foreign land, many older immigrants are fairly resilient and report experiencing good wellbeing. The key question that the present paper addresses is how this is achieved. Drawing on frameworks from cross-cultural and social identity literatures, the present study proposes and tests a model of serial multiple mediation that identifies possible mechanisms supporting the wellbeing of older immigrants who have resided in the host country for some time. In this model, it is predicted that new group memberships acquired post-migration enable access to social support that in turn provides the basis for perceived integration, which enhances wellbeing. This model was tested in a survey study with 102 older people, whose mean age was 80.3 years and who had migrated to Australia from Asian, European, and Central and South American countries on average 36 years previously. The survey assessed cultural identity, social group memberships acquired post-migration, perceived social support, perceived integration and wellbeing. Results supported the hypothesised model, indicating that joining new heritage culture and wider groups in Australia post-migration provided a platform for social support and integration, which enhanced life satisfaction and reduced loneliness. The implications of these findings for theory and adapting successfully to both migration and ageing are discussed.
The Chinese culture of filial piety has historically emphasised children's responsibility for their ageing parents. Little is understood regarding the inverse: parents’ responsibility and care for their adult children. This paper uses interviews with 50 families living in rural China's Anhui Province to understand intergenerational support in rural China. Findings indicate that parents in rural China take on large financial burdens in order to sustain patrilineal traditions by providing housing and child care for their adult sons. These expectations lead some rural elders to become migrant workers in order to support their adult sons while others provide live-in grandchild-care, moving into their children's urban homes or bringing grandchildren into their own homes. As the oldest rural generations begin to require ageing care of their own, migrant children are unable to provide the sustained care and support expected within the cultural tradition of xiao. This paper adds to the small body of literature that examines the downward transfer of support from parents to their adult children in rural China. The authors argue that there is an emerging cultural rupture in the practice of filial piety – while the older generation is fulfilling their obligations of upbringing and paying for adult children's housing and child care; these adult children are not necessarily available or committed to the return of care for their ageing parents. The authors reveal cultural and structural lags that leave millions of rural ageing adults vulnerable in the process of urbanisation in rural China.
Families facing end-stage nonmalignant chronic diseases (NMCDs) are presented with similar symptom burdens and need for psycho-social–spiritual support as their counterparts with advanced cancers. However, NMCD patients tend to face more variable disease trajectories, and thus may require different anticipatory supports, delivered in familiar environments. The Life Rainbow Programme (LRP) provides holistic, transdisciplinary, community-based end-of-life care for patients with NMCDs and their caregivers. This paper reports on the 3-month outcomes using a single-group, pre–post comparison.
Patients with end-stage NMCDs were screened for eligibility by a medical team before being referred to the LRP. Patients were assessed at baseline (T0), 1 month (T1), and 3 months (T2) using the Integrated Palliative Outcome Scale (IPOS). Their hospital use in the previous month was also measured by presentations at accident and emergency services, admissions to intensive care units, and number of hospital bed-days. Caregivers were assessed at T0 and T2 using the Chinese version of the Modified Caregiver Strain Index, and self-reported health, psychological, spiritual, and overall well-being. Over-time changes in outcomes for patients, and caregivers, were tested using paired-sample t-tests, Wilcoxon-signed rank tests, and chi-square tests.
Seventy-four patients and 36 caregivers participated in this research study. Patients reported significant improvements in all IPOS domains at both 1 and 3 months [ranging from Cohen's d = 0.495 (nausea) to 1.793 (depression and information needs fulfilled)]. Average hospital bed-days in the previous month fell from 3.50 to 1.68, comparing baseline and 1 month (p < 0.05). At 3 months, caregiver strain was significantly reduced (r = 0.332), while spiritual well-being was enhanced (r = 0.333).
After receiving 3 month's LRP services, patients with end-stage NMCDs and their caregivers experienced significant improvements in the quality of life and well-being, and their hospital bed-days were reduced.
This article uses data gathered from a survey that probed the career orientations and values of more than 1,000 law students in Beijing, Hong Kong and Taipei to examine the legal professionalism of future lawyers being trained under different legal education systems in Greater China. Our findings suggest that these future lawyers have a “materialistic” career orientation, although those studying in a system whose legal education goal is to train professional lawyers are more inclined to pursue professional legal ideals, and those trained in a system that emphasizes legal ethics are more likely to pursue public interest issues. On the basis of the findings, we argue that legal education systems in Greater China, while different in their traditions, share the same need to strengthen legal professionalism by according greater emphasis to legal ethics in their respective law school curricula.
Gravitational waves from coalescing neutron stars encode information about nuclear matter at extreme densities, inaccessible by laboratory experiments. The late inspiral is influenced by the presence of tides, which depend on the neutron star equation of state. Neutron star mergers are expected to often produce rapidly rotating remnant neutron stars that emit gravitational waves. These will provide clues to the extremely hot post-merger environment. This signature of nuclear matter in gravitational waves contains most information in the 2–4 kHz frequency band, which is outside of the most sensitive band of current detectors. We present the design concept and science case for a Neutron Star Extreme Matter Observatory (NEMO): a gravitational-wave interferometer optimised to study nuclear physics with merging neutron stars. The concept uses high-circulating laser power, quantum squeezing, and a detector topology specifically designed to achieve the high-frequency sensitivity necessary to probe nuclear matter using gravitational waves. Above 1 kHz, the proposed strain sensitivity is comparable to full third-generation detectors at a fraction of the cost. Such sensitivity changes expected event rates for detection of post-merger remnants from approximately one per few decades with two A+ detectors to a few per year and potentially allow for the first gravitational-wave observations of supernovae, isolated neutron stars, and other exotica.
Early life stress has been associated with emotional dysregulations and altered architecture of limbic-prefrontal brain systems engaged in emotional processing. Serotonin regulates both, developmental and experience-dependent neuroplasticity in these circuits. Central serotonergic biosynthesis rates are regulated by Tryptophan hydroxylase 2 (TPH2) and transgenic animal models suggest that TPH2-gene associated differences in serotonergic signaling mediate the impact of aversive early life experiences on a phenotype characterized by anxious avoidance.
The present study employed an imaging genetics approach that capitalized on individual differences in a TPH2 polymorphism (703G/T; rs4570625) to determine whether differences in serotonergic signaling modulate the effects of early life stress on brain structure and function and punishment sensitivity in humans (n = 252).
Higher maltreatment exposure before the age of 16 was associated with increased gray matter volumes in a circuitry spanning thalamic-limbic-prefrontal regions and decreased intrinsic communication in limbic-prefrontal circuits selectively in TT carriers. In an independent replication sample, associations between higher early life stress and increased frontal volumes in TT carriers were confirmed. On the phenotype level, the genotype moderated the association between higher early life stress exposure and higher punishment sensitivity. In TT carriers, the association between higher early life stress exposure and punishment sensitivity was critically mediated by increased thalamic-limbic-prefrontal volumes.
The present findings suggest that early life stress shapes the neural organization of the limbic-prefrontal circuits in interaction with individual variations in the TPH2 gene to promote a phenotype characterized by facilitated threat avoidance, thus promoting early adaptation to an adverse environment.
Ammonia can supplement hydrogen gas as a clean fuel to combat climate change. It overcomes hindrances that currently impede the realization of the full potential of hydrogen gas, including economical storage, political commitment, and safety concerns.
This study aimed to investigate the benefit of Bonebridge devices in patients with single-sided deafness.
Five patients with single-sided deafness who were implanted with Bonebridge devices were recruited in a single-centre study. Participants’ speech perception and horizontal sound localisation abilities were assessed at 6 and 12 months post-operatively. Speech intelligibility in noisy environments was measured in three different testing conditions (speech and noise presented from the front, speech and noise presented from the front and contralateral (normal ear) side separately, and speech presented from the ipsilateral (implanted Bonebridge) side and noise from the contralateral side). Sound localisation was evaluated in Bonebridge-aided and Bonebridge-unaided conditions at different stimuli levels (65, 70 and 75 dB SPL).
All participants showed a better capacity for speech intelligibility in quiet environments with the Bonebridge device. The speech recognition threshold with the Bonebridge device was significantly decreased at both short- and long-term follow up in the speech presented from the ipsilateral (implanted Bonebridge) side and noise from the contralateral side condition (p < 0.05). Additionally, participants maintained similar levels of sound localisation between the Bonebridge-aided and unaided conditions (p > 0.05). However, the accuracy of localisation showed some improvement at 70 dB SPL and 75 dB SPL post-operatively.
The Bonebridge device provides the benefit of improved speech perception performance in patients with single-sided deafness. Sound localisation abilities were neither improved nor worsened with Bonebridge implantation at the follow-up assessments.
Population ageing, together with urbanisation, has become one of the greatest challenges throughout the world in the 21st century. Approximately one million people turn 60 each month worldwide. By 2050, more than 20 per cent of the global population is predicted to be 60 years old or above. Thus, an increasing need is evident for age-friendly communities, services and structures. Numerous studies on age-friendly cities and communities (AFCCs) have been conducted over the past decade. The large volume literature makes it necessary to figure out key areas and the evolution trends of studies on AFCCs. Therefore, this paper aims to provide a comprehensive review of existing literature pertaining to AFCCs. A total of 231 collected publications are analysed and visualised by CiteSpace. According to the keywords and document co-citation networks that are generated, the foundation, hot topics and domains of AFCC research are grouped. Three major themes, namely the characteristics of AFCCs, the application of the World Health Organization's framework in urban and rural areas worldwide, and the measurement of cities’ and communities’ age-friendliness, are identified. In addition, a roadmap of AFCC research is developed. The results of this research will therefore benefit researchers and practitioners.
Our research group demonstrated that vitamin A restriction affected meat quality of Angus cross and Simmental steers. Therefore, the aim of this study is to highlight the genotype variations in response to dietary vitamin A levels. Commercial Angus and Simmental steers (n = 32 per breed; initial BW = 337.2 ± 5.9 kg; ~8 months of age) were fed a low-vitamin A (LVA) (1017 IU/kg DM) backgrounding diet for 95 days to reduce hepatic vitamin A stores. During finishing, steers were randomly assigned to treatments in a 2 × 2 factorial arrangement of genotype × dietary vitamin A concentration. The LVA treatment was a finishing diet with no supplemental vitamin A (723 IU vitamin A/kg DM); the control (CON) was the LVA diet plus supplementation with 2200 IU vitamin A/kg DM. Blood samples were collected at three time points throughout the study to analyze serum retinol concentration. At the completion of finishing, steers were slaughtered at a commercial abattoir. Meat characteristics assessed were intramuscular fat concentration, color, Warner-Bratzler shear force, cook loss and pH. Camera image analysis was used for determination of marbling, 12th rib back fat and longissimus muscle area (LMA). The LVA steers had lower (P < 0.001) serum retinol concentration than CON steers. The LVA treatment resulted in greater (P = 0.03) average daily gain than the CON treatment, 1.52 and 1.44 ± 0.03 kg/day, respectively; however, there was no effect of treatment on final BW, DM intake or feed efficiency. Cooking loss and yield grade were greater and LMA was smaller in LVA steers (P < 0.05). There was an interaction between breed and treatment for marbling score (P = 0.01) and percentage of carcasses grading United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Prime (P = 0.02). For Angus steers, LVA treatment resulted in a 16% greater marbling score than CON (683 and 570 ± 40, respectively) and 27% of LVA Angus steers graded USDA Prime compared with 0% for CON. Conversely, there was no difference in marbling score or USDA Quality Grades between LVA and CON for Simmental steers. In conclusion, feeding a LVA diet during finishing increased marbling in Angus but not in Simmental steers. Reducing the vitamin A level of finishing diets fed to cattle with a high propensity to marble, such as Angus, has the potential to increase economically important traits such as marbling and quality grade without negatively impacting gain : feed or yield grade.
Introduction: Physicians who practice emergency medicine (EM) often perform procedural interventions, which can occasionally result in unintended patient harm. Our study's objective was to identify and describe the interventions and contributing factors associated with medico-legal (ML) cases involving emergency physicians performing procedural interventions. Methods: The Canadian Medical Protective Association (CMPA) is a not-for-profit, ML organization which represented over 99,000 physicians at the time of this study. We extracted five years (2014-2018) of CMPA data describing closed ML cases involving procedural interventions (e.g. suturing, reducing a dislocated joint) and excluding interventions related to pharmacotherapy (e.g. injection of local anesthetic), diagnosis (electrocardiograms) and physical assessments (e.g. ear exams), performed by physicians practicing EM. We then applied an internal contributing factor framework to identify themes. We analysed the data using descriptive statistics. Results: We identified 145 cases describing 145 patients who had 205 procedures performed in the course of their EM care. The three most common interventions were orthopedic injury management (47/145, 32.4%), wound management (43/145, 29.7%), and Advanced Cardiac Life Support (24/145, 16.6%). Out of 145 patients, 93.8% (136/145) experienced a patient safety event, and 55.9% (76/136) suffered an avoidable harmful incident. One quarter of patients suffered mild harm (34/76, 25.0%), 18.4% of patients died, 14.5% suffered severe harm, and 13.2% moderate harm. Peer experts were critical of 86/145 cases (59.3%) where the following provider contributing factors were found: a lack of situational awareness (20/68, 29.4%), and deficient physician clinical decision-making (54/68, 79.7%). Clinical decision-making issues included a lack of thoroughness of assessment (33/54, 61.1%), failure to perform tests or interventions (21/54, 38.9%), and a delay or failure to seek help from another physician (17/54, 31.2%). Peer experts were also critical of 48.8% of cases containing team factors (42/86) due to deficient medical record keeping (26/42, 61.9%), and communication breakdown with patients or other team members (25/42, 59.5%). Conclusion: Both provider and team factors contributed to ML cases involving EM physicians performing procedural interventions. Addressing these factors may improve patient safety and reduce ML risk for physicians.
This report is on the synthesis by electrospinning of multiferroic core-shell nanofibers of strontium hexaferrite and lead zirconate titanate or barium titanate and studies on magneto-electric (ME) coupling. Fibers with well-defined core–shell structures showed the order parameters in agreement with values for nanostructures. The strength of ME coupling measured by the magnetic field-induced polarization showed the fractional change in the remnant polarization as high as 21%. The ME voltage coefficient in H-assembled films showed the strong ME response for the zero magnetic bias field. Follow-up studies and potential avenues for enhancing the strength of ME coupling in the core–shell nanofibers are discussed.
There seems to be geographical differences in decisions about breast conserving surgery (BCS) in breast cancer patients. This study was to evaluate patients’ attitude to BCS and to assess the factors affecting cancer practice in West China.
A structured questionnaire was distributed to 184 patients, eliciting information about the patients’ characteristics, occupation, education, family life, recognition of illness, knowledge about BCS, the main means of gaining surgery information, selecting surgery approaches, preferences to breast reservation.
In all, 163 patients completed the questionnaire. The results indicated that only 7.4% of patients received BCS and 23% of the remaining patients desired to have BCS and the affecting factors were significantly associated with their family life, recognition of illness and the main means of gaining surgery information (P < 0.05). No associations were between BCS selecting and the other variables studied. The most frequent reasons for selecting BCS were keeping the female shape and improving quality of life (71%), the second most were postoperative recovery, minimal influence of physical function (47%) and patients’ knowledge about BCS (42%). The most frequent reasons for not selecting BCS were uncertainty about BCS results and worry about recurrence (81%), the second most was the elderly age unnecessary for BCS (40%).
The findings indicate that breast cancer patients in West China do not take BCS as the first choice as the best treatment method. It is warranted that further study of more patients, attitude of patients’ partners and physicians to BCS.
Effectiveness of medication treatment is determined by three components: treatment efficacy (symptom reduction), tolerability/safety, and adherence. Compared with efficacy and safety, research into adherence has been lacking. Nevertheless, medication non-adherence is a risk factor for relapse and for aggressive behavior in association with substance abuse in schizophrenia patients. Non-adherence has been estimated to cause approximately 40% of relapses in patients with schizophrenia. High rates of treatment discontinuation in all arms of the CATIE study illustrate the widespread nature of non-adherence. Most of previous research has defined non-adherence as a complete discontinuation of medication. However, many schizophrenia patients show partial adherence: they do not completely discontinue their medication, but they do not take all that has been prescribed. Partial adherence is more difficult to define and study than complete non-adherence.
e had the opportunity to study partial adherence in the context of a randomized, double-blind, 8-week, fixed-dose study comparing olanzapine 10mg/d, 20 mg/d and 40 mg/d for patients with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder (N=599). Medication non-adherence was measured by pill counts. Baseline characteristics including demographics, illness history and symptom severity were investigated as potential risk factors for treatment non-adherence.
Results and conclusion
Approximately 1/3 of patients were non-adherent with their medication at least once during the 8-week study. These non-adherent patients had significantly less improvement compared to adherent patients. Adherent patients had greater weight gain than the non-adherent ones. Among the available baseline measures, greater baseline depression severity appeared to be a significant risk factor for non-adherence.
Previous studies have shown that African American youth are over-represented in the Criminal Justice System (CJS). Substance use problems are common among those with CJS involvement. However, less is known regarding racial disparities, among youth with CJS involvement, in receiving substance use treatment services.
To examine racial disparities with regard to receiving treatment services for substance use related problems, among youth with (CJS) involvement.
Data were obtained from the 2006–2008 United States National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) in USA. Among White and African American adolescents (Ages 12–17) with recent CJS involvement and who met criteria for alcohol or illicit drug abuse or dependence (N = 602), racial differences in receiving treatment services for substance use problems were examined. Multiple logistic regression analyses were performed to identify predictors of service access among the adolescents, to see if the racial disparity could be explained by individual-level, family-level, and criminal justice system involvement factors.
While 31.2% of White adolescent substance abusers with CJS involvement had received treatment for substance use related problems, only 11.6% of their African American counterparts had received such treatment (P = 0.0005). Multiple logistic regression analyses showed that access to treatment services can be predicted by substance use related delinquent behaviors, but that racial disparities in treatment still exist after adjusting for these factors (AOR = 0.24, 95%CI = (0.09,0.59), P = 0.0027).
There is an urgent need to reduce racial disparities in receiving substance use treatment among U.S. youth with CJS involvement.