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Drilling and sampling are the most direct and effective methods available to study Antarctic subglacial lakes. Based on the Philberth probe, a Recoverable Autonomous Sonde (RECAS) allows for in situ lake water measurement and sampling, through the addition of an upper thermal tip and a cable recoiling mechanism. RECAS-200, a prototype of RECAS, has a drilling depth of 200 m, a surface supply voltage of 800 VAC and a downhole power of ~9.6 kW during drilling. In this study, a heating control system for RECAS-200 was designed. The system avoids the need for high-power step-down converters, by separating heating power from control power, thereby reducing the overall weight of the probe and avoiding the need to increase cable diameter. We also introduce a self-developed, small, solid-state, 800 VAC power regulator and a fuzzy PID temperature control algorithm. Their purpose was to manage the power adjustment of each heating element and to provide closed-loop temperature control of certain heating elements which can easily burn out due to overheating. Test results indicated that the proposed RECAS-200 heating control system met all our design specifications and could be easily assembled into the RECAS-200 probe.
Anaemia is a global public health problem affecting women worldwide, and reproductive-age women are at increased risk. We conducted a population-based cross-sectional study analysing the prevalence of overall anaemia and anaemia according to severity in Chinese pre-pregnant women to update current knowledge on anaemia epidemiology. Based on the National Free Preconception Check-up Projects supported by the Chinese government, 5 679 782 women participating in this project in 2017 were included in the present study. The cyanmethemoglobin method was applied to assess Hb concentrations. Univariate and multivariate logistic regressions were applied for associated factors. The prevalence of anaemia among Chinese pre-pregnant women was 21·64 % (mild: 14·10 %, moderate: 7·17 % and severe : 0·37 %). The prevalence of overall and severe anaemia was the highest in Tibet and the lowest in Beijing among thirty-one provinces. Women’s age, region, ethnic origin, educational level, occupation and pregnancy history were all correlated with anaemia. Women with B blood type (adjusted OR (aOR) = 0·89), higher BMI (overweight: aOR = 0·84; obesity: aOR = 0·70) and alcohol consumption (aOR = 0·69) were less likely to have anaemia, while those with rhesus negative blood type (aOR = 1·10), history of anaemia (aOR = 2·60), older age at menarche (aOR = 1·19), heavy menstrual blood loss (aOR = 1·39), longer menstrual period (aOR = 1·09) and shorter menstrual cycle (aOR = 1·08) were more likely to suffer from anaemia. Meat or egg eaters were not significantly associated with severe anaemia. Anaemia is of moderate public health significance among Chinese pre-pregnant women. Interventions should be considered to prevent anaemia to the greatest extent possible to avoid potential harm in this population.
Subglacial lake exploration is of great interest to the science community. RECoverable Autonomous Sonde (RECAS) provides an exploration tool to measure and sample subglacial lake environments while the subglacial lake remains isolated from the glacier surface and atmosphere. This paper presents an electronic control system design of 200 m prototype of RECAS. The proposed electronic control system consists of a surface system, a downhole control system, and a power transfer and communication system. The downhole control system is the core element of RECAS, and is responsible for sonde status monitoring, sonde motion control, subglacial water sampling and in situ analysis. A custom RS485 temperature sensor was developed to cater for the limited size and depth requirements of the system. We adopted a humidity-based measurement to monitor for a housing leak. This condition is because standard leak detection monitoring of water conductivity may be inapplicable to pure ice in Antarctica. A water sampler control board was designed to control the samplers and monitor the on/off state. A high-definition camera system with built-in storage and self-heating ability was designed to perform the video recording in the subglacial lake. The proposed electronic control system is proven effective after a series of tests.
Much progress has been made in understanding the environmental and hormonal systems regulating winter diapause. However, transcriptional regulation of summer diapause is still largely unknown, making it difficult to understand an all-around regulation profile of seasonal adaptation. To bridge this gap, comparison RNA-seq to profile the transcriptome and to examine differential gene expression profiles between non-diapause, summer diapause, and winter diapause groups were performed. A total number of 113 million reads were generated and assembled into 79,117 unigenes, with 37,492 unigenes categorized into 58 functional gene ontology groups, 25 clusters of orthologous group categories, and 256 Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathways. KEGG analysis mapped 2108 differentially expressed genes to 48 and 67 pathways for summer and winter diapauses, respectively. Enrichment statistics showed that 11 identical pathways similarly overlapped in the top 20 enriched functional groups both related to summer and winter diapauses. We also identified 35 key candidate genes for universal and differential functions related to summer and winter diapause preparation. Furthermore, we identified some genes involved in the signaling and metabolic pathways that may be the key drivers to integrate environmental signals into the summer and winter diapause preparation. The current study provided valuable insights into global molecular mechanisms underpinning diapause preparation.
In a recent communication on carbon isotope chemostratigraphy of the uppermost Cambrian strata, it was claimed that the Top of Cambrian Excursion (TOCE) is (1) an undocumented negative δ13Ccarb excursion; (2) ambiguously defined; (3) deliberately fictitious or, in the authors’ words, a ‘nihilartikel’; and (4) not synonymous with the Hellnmaria–Red Tops Boundary (HERB) Event. As the authors who have been involved in much of the discussion surrounding the TOCE since its introduction and in subsequent clarification, we wish to emphasize that the recent communication overlooks the fact that the TOCE is in fact a well-documented and clearly defined negative δ13Ccarb excursion, and that the term ‘HERB Event’ was originally used informally, without definition or reference data, for a negative δ13Ccarb peak, a peak later shown to occur within the TOCE excursion. Nearly a decade after the TOCE was named, the concept of the HERB Event was modified from a negative δ13Ccarb peak to a negative δ13Ccarb excursion, making it conceptually synonymous with the TOCE excursion. The recently published commentary is misleading and replete with misconceptions, as we discuss here.
A recently developed pneumonia caused by SARS-CoV-2 has quickly spread across the world. Unfortunately, a simplified risk score that could easily be used in primary care or general practice settings has not been developed. The objective of this study is to identify a simplified risk score that could easily be used to quickly triage severe COVID-19 patients. All severe and critical adult patients with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 on the West campus of Union Hospital, Wuhan, China, from 28 January 2020 to 29 February 2020 were included in this study. Clinical data and laboratory results were obtained. CURB-65 pneumonia score was calculated. Univariate logistic regressions were applied to explore risk factors associated with in-hospital death. We used the receiver operating characteristic curve and multivariate COX-PH model to analyse risk factors for in-hospital death. A total of 74 patients (31 died, 43 survived) were finally included in the study. We observed that compared with survivors, non-survivors were older and illustrated higher respiratory rate, neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio, D-dimer and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), but lower SpO2 as well as impaired liver function, especially synthesis function. CURB-65 showed good performance for predicting in-hospital death (area under curve 0.81, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.71–0.91). CURB-65 ⩾ 2 may serve as a cut-off value for prediction of in-hospital death in severe patients with COVID-19 (sensitivity 68%, specificity 81%, F1 score 0.7). CURB-65 (hazard ratio (HR) 1.61; 95% CI 1.05–2.46), LDH (HR 1.003; 95% CI 1.001–1.004) and albumin (HR 0.9; 95% CI 0.81–1) were risk factors for in-hospital death in severe patients with COVID-19. Our study indicates CURB-65 may serve as a useful prognostic marker in COVID-19 patients, which could be used to quickly triage severe patients in primary care or general practice settings.
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 oxidation behavior of the selective laser melting (SLM)–fabricated Inconel 718 was investigated through isothermal oxidation testing at 650 °C for 500 h and compared with that of the as-cast and as-forged specimens at the same testing conditions. The effect of microstructure and surface roughness on the oxidation behavior of the SLM-fabricated, as-cast, and as-forged Inconel 718 specimens was examined. The result shows that Inconel 718 fabricated by SLM with the unique layer structure exhibited a better resistance to the 500 h oxidation at 650 °C compared with as-cast and as-forged 718 with coarse dendritic structure and uniform equiaxed grain microstructure, respectively. The influence of the surface roughness on the long-time oxidation resistance of SLM specimens is not pronounced compared with that of as-cast and as-forged specimens. The tiny dendrites instead of grain boundaries are a major influencing factor for the oxidation process of SLM specimens. The surface roughness has more evident influence on the oxidation resistance of as-forged specimens than that of the as-cast ones subjected to the 500 h oxidation at 650 °C.
Previous studies have shown conflicting findings regarding the relationship between maternal vitamin D deficiency (VDD) and fetal growth restriction (FGR). We hypothesised that parathyroid hormone (PTH) may be an underlying factor relevant to this potential association. In a prospective birth cohort study, descriptive statistics were evaluated for the demographic characteristics of 3407 pregnancies in the second trimester from three antenatal clinics in Hefei, China. The association of the combined status of vitamin D and PTH with birth weight and the risk of small for gestational age (SGA) was assessed by a multivariate linear and binary logistic regression. We found that declined status of 25-hydroxyvitamin D is associated with lower birth weight (for moderate VDD: adjusted β = −49·4 g, 95 % CI −91·1, −7·8, P < 0·05; for severe VDD: adjusted β = −79·8 g, 95 % CI −127·2, −32·5, P < 0·01), as well as ascended levels of PTH (for elevated PTH: adjusted β = −44·5 g, 95 % CI −82·6, −6·4, P < 0·05). Compared with the non-VDD group with non-elevated PTH, pregnancies with severe VDD and elevated PTH had the lowest neonatal birth weight (adjusted β = −124·7 g, 95 % CI −194·6, −54·8, P < 0·001) and the highest risk of SGA (adjusted risk ratio (RR) = 3·36, 95 % CI 1·41, 8·03, P < 0·01). Notably, the highest risk of less Ca supplementation was founded in severe VDD group with elevated PTH (adjusted RR = 4·67, 95 % CI 2·78, 7·85, P < 0·001). In conclusion, elevated PTH induced by less Ca supplementation would further aggravate the risk of FGR in pregnancies with severe VDD through impaired maternal Ca metabolism homoeostasis.
Major depressive disorder (MDD) is a prevalent mental disorder characterized by impairments in affect, behaviour and cognition. Previous studies have indicated that the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) may play an essential role in the pathophysiology of depression. In this study, we systematically identified changes in functional connectivity (FC) for ACC subdivisions that manifest in MDD and further investigated the relationship between these changes and the clinical symptoms of depression.
Sub-regional ACC FC was estimated in 41 first-episode medication-naïve MDD patients compared to 43 healthy controls. The relationships between depressive symptom severity and aberrant FC of ACC subdivisions were investigated. In addition, we conducted a meta-analysis to generate the distributions of MDD-related abnormal regions from previously reported results and compared them to FC deficits revealed in this study.
In MDD patients, the subgenual and perigenual ACC demonstrated decreased FC with the posterior regions of the default network (DN), including the posterior inferior parietal lobule and posterior cingulate cortex. FC of these regions was negatively associated with the Automatic Thoughts Questionnaire scores and largely overlapped with previously reported abnormal regions. In addition, reduced FC between the caudal ACC and precuneus was negatively correlated with the Hamilton Anxiety Scale scores. We also found increased FC between the rostral ACC and dorsal medial prefrontal cortex.
Our findings confirmed that functional interaction changes in different ACC sub-regions are specific and associated with distinct symptoms of depression. Our findings provide new insights into the role of ACC sub-regions and DN in the pathophysiology of MDD.
The present study aimed to investigate whether dietary choline can regulate lipid metabolism and suppress NFκB activation and, consequently, attenuate inflammation induced by a high-fat diet in black sea bream (Acanthopagrus schlegelii). An 8-week feeding trial was conducted on fish with an initial weight of 8·16 ± 0·01 g. Five diets were formulated: control, low-fat diet (11 %); HFD, high-fat diet (17 %); and HFD supplemented with graded levels of choline (3, 6 or 12 g/kg) termed HFD + C1, HFD + C2 and HFD + C3, respectively. Dietary choline decreased lipid content in whole body and tissues. Highest TAG and cholesterol concentrations in serum and liver were recorded in fish fed the HFD. Similarly, compared with fish fed the HFD, dietary choline reduced vacuolar fat drops and ameliorated HFD-induced pathological changes in liver. Expression of genes of lipolysis pathways were up-regulated, and genes of lipogenesis down-regulated, by dietary choline compared with fish fed the HFD. Expression of nfκb and pro-inflammatory cytokines in liver and intestine was suppressed by choline supplementation, whereas expression of anti-inflammatory cytokines was promoted in fish fed choline-supplemented diets. In fish that received lipopolysaccharide to stimulate inflammatory responses, the expression of nfκb and pro-inflammatory cytokines in liver, intestine and kidney were all down-regulated by dietary choline compared with the HFD. Overall, the present study indicated that dietary choline had a lipid-lowering effect, which could protect the liver by regulating intrahepatic lipid metabolism, reducing lipid droplet accumulation and suppressing NFκB activation, consequently attenuating HFD-induced inflammation in A. schlegelii.
Alzheimer’s Disease (AD), characterized by deficits in memory and cognition and by behavioral impairment, is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder that influences more than 47 million people worldwide. Currently, no available drug is able to stop AD progression. Therefore, novel therapeutic strategies need to be investigated.
We analyzed the RNA sequencing data (RNA-seq) derived from the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO) database to identify the differentially expressed mRNAs in AD. The AD mouse model Tg2576 was used to verify the effects of IGF-2. The Morris Water Maze was administered to test the role of IGF-2 in memory consolidation. In addition, we quantified cell apoptosis by the TUNEL assay. The levels of amyloid plaques and the levels of Aβ40 and Aβ42 in the hippocampus were also determined by immunohistochemistry and ELISA, respectively.
RNA-seq analysis revealed that IGF-2 was remarkably reduced in AD. The expression of the upstream genes PI3K and AKT and the downstream gene CREB in the PI3K signaling pathway was significantly increased in the hippocampus of Tg2576 mice cells treated with IGF-2. The Morris water maze test showed that IGF-2 improved memory consolidation in Tg2576 mice. The activity of caspase-3 was decreased in Tg2576 mice treated with IGF-2. Amyloid plaques in the hippocampus were reduced, and the levels of Aβ40 and Aβ42 were decreased. The above effects of IGF-2 on AD were blocked when the PI3K signaling pathway inhibitor wortmannin was added.
IGF-2 attenuates memory decline, oxidative stress, cell apoptosis and amyloid plaques in the AD mouse model Tg2576 by activating the PI3K/AKT/CREB signaling pathway.
Underground Nuclear Astrophysics in China (JUNA) will take the advantage of the ultra-low background in Jinping underground lab. High current accelerator with an ECR source and detectors were commissioned. JUNA plans to study directly a number of nuclear reactions important to hydrostatic stellar evolution at their relevant stellar energies. At the first period, JUNA aims at the direct measurements of 25Mg(p,γ)26 Al, 19F(p,α) 16 O, 13C(α, n) 16O and 12C(α,γ) 16O near the Gamow window. The current progress of JUNA will be given.
Brain structural connectome comprise of a minority of efficiently interconnected rich club nodes that are regarded as ‘high-order regions’. The remission of major depressive disorder (MDD) in response to selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) treatment could be investigated by the hierarchical structural connectomes’ alterations of subnetworks.
Fifty-five MDD patients who achieved remission underwent diffusion tensors imaging (DTI) scanning from 3 cohorts before and after 8-weeks antidepressant treatment. Five hierarchical subnetworks namely, rich, local, feeder, rich-feeder and feeder-local, were constructed according to the different combinations of connections and nodes as defined by rich club architecture. The critical treatment-related subnetwork pattern was explored by multivariate pattern analysis with support vector machine to differ the pre-/post-treatment patients. Then, relationships between graph metrics of discriminative subnetworks/ nodes and clinical variables were further explored.
The feeder-local subnetwork presented the most discriminative power in differing pre-/post- treatment patients, while the rich-feeder subnetwork had the highest discriminative power when comparing pre-treatment patients and controls. Furthermore, based on the feeder connection, which indicates the information transmission between the core and non-core architectures of brain networks, its topological measures were found to be significantly correlated with the reduction rate of 17-item Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression.
Although pathological lesion on MDD relied on abnormal core organization, disease remission was association with the compensation from non-core organization. These results suggested that the dysfunctions arising from hierarchical subnetworks are compensated by increased information interactions between core brain regions and functionally diverse regions.
There is emerging evidence that glycaemic variability (GV) plays an important role in the development of diabetic complications. The current study aimed to compare the effects of lifestyle intervention (LI) with and without partial meal replacement (MR) on GV. A total of 123 patients with newly diagnosed and untreated type 2 diabetes (T2D) were randomised to receive either LI together with breakfast replacement with a liquid formula (LI+MR) (n 62) or LI alone (n 61) for 4 weeks and completed the study. Each participant was instructed to have three main meals per d and underwent 72-h continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) both before and after intervention. Measures of GV assessed by CGM included the incremental AUC of postprandial blood glucose (AUCpp), standard deviation of blood glucose (SDBG), glucose CV and mean amplitude of glycaemic excursions (MAGE). After a 4-week intervention, the improvements in systolic blood pressure (P=0·046) and time in range (P=0·033) were more pronounced in the LI+MR group than in the LI group. Furthermore, LI+MR caused significantly greater improvements in all GV metrics including SDBG (P=0·005), CV (P=0·002), MAGE (P=0·016) and AUCpp (P<0·001) than did LI. LI+MR (v. LI) was independently associated with improvements in GV after adjustment of covariates (all P<0·05). Our study showed that LI+MR led to significantly greater improvements in GV compared with LI, suggesting that LI+MR could be an effective treatment to alleviate glucose excursions.
The water and energy sectors of an economy are inextricably linked. Energy is required in water production, distribution, and recycling, while water is often used for energy generation. In many geographical locations, the energy-water nexus is exacerbated by the shortage of both fresh water resources and energy generation infrastructure. New materials, including metamaterials, are now emerging to address the challenges of providing renewable energy and fresh water, especially to off-the-grid communities struggling with water shortages. Novel nanomaterials have fueled recent technology breakthroughs in solar water desalination, fog and dew collection, and cloud seeding. Materials for passive thermal management of buildings and individuals offer promising strategies to reduce the use of energy and water for heating and cooling. While many challenges remain, emerging materials and technologies improve sustainable management of water and energy resources.
Multi-functions devices attract much attention due to their great potential and large demands in wearable electronics. Besides some studies of integrated different functional devices as one, there is a novel strategy to fabricate multi-functions devices, that using one device to achieve two or more functions. Herein, we report the temperature sensing and energy storage multi-functions device based on graphene supercapacitor. By measuring the change of leakage current of supercapacitor, the obtained device could detect the environmental temperature. Integrating the planar-structure supercapacitor on one flexible printed circuit board with electronic components together, the obtain device presents perfect mechanical stability that no noticeable difference of both capacitance and leakage current under any bending status. Importantly, the temperature sensing function exhibits a high accuracy of 1 °C with a high resolution of 0.0588 °C. This work demonstrates the feasibility of the strategy of one device achieve two functions: using one supercapacitor to achieve temperature sensing and energy storage dual function simultaneously.
Discounting rate refers to people’s tendency to reduce the rate of subjective value from delayed benefit over time. The current study investigates the relationship among belief in a just world (BJW), sense of control, and discounting rate, especially the mediating effect of sense of control between BJW and discounting rate. The study recruited 412 undergraduates to complete a BJW scale, Sense of Control scale, and the Monetary Choice Questionnaire. The results show that (1) BJW positively predicted sense of control, (2) BJW and sense of control were negatively correlated with discounting rate, and (3) sense of control completely mediated the associations between BJW and discounting rate. These findings extend those of prior studies and indicate that a sense of control underlies the association between BJW and discounting rate.
Gut microbes, especially those in the large intestine, are actively involved in nutrient metabolism; however, their impact on host nitrogen (N) metabolism remains largely unknown. This study was designed to investigate the effects of feeding a cocktail of antibiotics (AGM) (ampicillin, gentamycin and metronidazole) on intestinal microbiota, N utilization efficiency, and amino acid (AA) digestibility in cannulated pigs, with the aim of exploring the impact of gut microbiota on host N metabolism. In total, 16 piglets were surgically fitted with a simple distal ileal T-cannula and a jugular venous catheter. The pigs were fed a basal diet without antibiotics (control; CON) or with antibiotics (antibiotic; ANTI), for 2 weeks. The results showed that feeding AGM did not affect weight gain or digestive enzyme activity. The antibiotics increased the concentration of urea N (P<0.05). However, they reduced N utilization, and the total tract apparent digestibility of isoleucine, methionine, valine, tyrosine and total AA (P<0.05). Furthermore, the antibiotics increased the terminal ileum apparent digestibility of CP, phenylalanine, valine, alanine, tyrosine and total AA (P<0.05). AGM markedly altered the composition of the microbiota in the ileum and feces, with a reduction in populations of Bifidobacterium, Lactobacillus and Ruminococcus, and an increase in the abundance of Escherichia coli (P<0.05). The antibiotics also significantly increased the concentration of cadaverine and ammonia, both in ileal digesta and feces (P<0.05), suggesting a marked impact on N metabolism in the intestine. The analyses indicated that the alteration of gut microbiota was correlated with the apparent digestibility of CP and AA in the intestine. These findings suggest that the AGM-induced alteration of gut microbiota may contribute to the change in intestinal N metabolism, and consequently, N excretion from the body. These results also suggest that antibiotics could have a significant effect on host N metabolism. The present study contributes to our understanding of the effects of antibiotics and provides a rational scientific basis for diet formulation during AGM use.
Al–12.6Si was annealed at both 500 and 560 °C for different lengths of time in this study. Additionally, the effects of annealing treatment on the spheroidization of eutectic Si and the mechanical properties of the Al–Si alloy have been investigated. The morphology of these particles was described using surface shape factor (φ), and it was found that the optimal annealing time of Al–12.6Si at 500 and 560 °C is seven hours and five hours, respectively. The average size of the Si particles in the Al–Si alloy annealed at 500 °C is less than that of the particles at 560 °C. The roundness of the Si particles within the Al–Si alloy annealed at 500 °C is slightly better than that at 560 °C. The elongation of the alloy apparently increases, while the tensile strength of the Al–Si alloy decreases. The tensile strength and elongation of the eutectic Al–Si alloy annealed at 500 °C is higher than that at 560 °C.