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Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have consistently revealed that a variant of microRNA 137 (MIR137) shows a quite significant association with schizophrenia. Identifying the network of genes regulated by MIR137 could provide insights into the biological processes underlying schizophrenia. In addition, DLPFC functional connectivity, a robust correlate of MIR137, may provide plausible endophenotypes. However, the regulatory role of the MIR137 gene network in the disrupted functional connectivity remains unclear. Here, we tested the effects of the MIR137 regulated genes on the risk for schizophrenia and DLPFC functional connectivity.
To evaluate the additive effects of the MIR137 regulated genes (N = 1274), we calculated a MIR137 polygenic risk score (PRS) for schizophrenia and tested its association with the risk for schizophrenia in the genomic data of a Han Chinese population that included schizophrenia patients (N = 589) and normal controls (N = 575). We then investigated the association between MIR137 PRS and DLPFC functional connectivity in two independent young healthy cohorts (N = 356 and N = 314).
We found that the MIR137 PRS successfully captured the differences in genetic structure between the patients and controls, but the single gene MIR137 did not. We then consistently found that a higher MIR137 PRS was correlated with lower functional connectivities between the DLPFC and both the superior parietal cortex and the inferior temporal cortex in two independent cohorts.
The findings suggested that these two functional connectivities of the DLPFC could be important endophenotypes linking the MIR137-regulated genetic structure to schizophrenia.
Energy chirp compensation of the electron bunch (e-bunch) in a laser wakefield accelerator, which is caused by the phase space rotation in the gradient wakefield, has been applied in many schemes for low energy spread e-bunch generation. We report the experimental observation of energy chirp compensation of the e-bunch in a nonlinear laser wakefield accelerator with a negligible beam loading effect. By adjusting the acceleration length using a wedge-roof block, the chirp compensation of the accelerated e-bunch was observed via an electron spectrometer. Apart from this, some significant parameters for the compensation process, such as the longitudinal dispersion and wakefield slope at the bunch position, were also estimated. A detailed comparison between experiment and simulation shows good agreement of the wakefield and bunch parameters. These results give a clear demonstration of the longitudinal characteristics of the wakefield in a plasma and the bunch dynamics, which are important for better control of a compact laser wakefield accelerator.
This study investigated the effect of pre-exercise α-lactalbumin ingestion on subsequent endurance exercise performance, muscle pain and mood states. In a two-stage cross-over counterbalance design, eleven male endurance runners (age: 31 (se 2) years, height: 169·5 (se 4·4) cm, weight: 63·6 (se 5·1) kg, V̇O2max: 58·8 (se 6·3) ml/kg per min) consumed two solutions (carbohydrate+α-lactalbumin, CA; carbohydrate+whey protein isolate, CW) 2 h before a self-paced 21-km run. Creatine kinase, IL-6, muscle pain, pressure pain threshold (PPT) and mood states were assessed 2 h before exercise, immediately before exercise (Pre-ex0) and immediately after exercise (Post-ex0). No difference was found in 21-km running performance between two trials (CA v. CW: 115·85 (se 5·20) v. 118·85 (se 5·51) min, P=0·48). Compared with CW, CA led to higher PPT at Pre-ex0 (41·77 (se 2·27) v. 35·56 (se 2·10) N/cm2, P<0·01) and Post-ex0 (38·76 (se 3·23) v. 35·30 (se 3·55) N/cm2, P=0·047). Compared with CW, CA reduced the feeling of fatigue at Post-ex0 (P<0·01); CA also reduced salivary cortisol levels at Post-ex0 (0·72 (se 0·07) v. 0·83 (se 0·13) ng/ml, P<0·01). In conclusion, the ingestion of α-lactalbumin did not improve the 21-km time-trial performance. However, compared with the pre-exercise ingestion of whey protein, that of α-lactalbumin led to superior results during similar levels of endurance exercise: it elevated PPT and reduced the feeling of fatigue and the cortisol levels.
The paper presents an experimental investigation on the flow-induced vibrations of two tandem circular cylinders for spacing ratio
and reduced velocity
is the cylinder centre-to-centre spacing and
is the cylinder diameter. Both cylinders are allowed to vibrate only laterally. Extensive measurements are conducted to capture the cylinder vibration and frequency responses, surface pressures, shedding frequencies and flow fields using laser vibrometer, hotwire, pressure scanner and PIV techniques. Four vibration regimes are identified based on the characteristics and generation mechanisms of the cylinder galloping vibrations. Several findings are made on the mechanisms of vibration generation and sustainability. First, the initial states (vibrating or fixed) of a cylinder may have a pronounced impact on the vibration of the other. Second, alternating reattachment, detachment, rolling up and shedding of the upper and lower gap shear layers all contribute to the vibrations. Third, the gap vortices around the base surface of the upstream cylinder produce positive work on the cylinder, sustaining the upstream cylinder vibration. Fourth, reattachment, detachment and switching of the gap shear layers result in largely positive work on the downstream cylinder, playing an important role in sustaining its vibration.
In this study, we investigate a new simple scheme using a planar undulator (PU) together with a properly dispersed electron beam (
beam) with a large energy spread (
) to enhance the free-electron laser (FEL) gain. For a dispersed
beam in a PU, the resonant condition is satisfied for the center electrons, while the frequency detuning increases for the off-center electrons, inhibiting the growth of the radiation. The PU can act as a filter for selecting the electrons near the beam center to achieve the radiation. Although only the center electrons contribute, the radiation can be enhanced significantly owing to the high-peak current of the beam. Theoretical analysis and simulation results indicate that this method can be used for the improvement of the radiation performance, which has great significance for short-wavelength FEL applications.
In order to improve the dispersibility of halloysite nanotubes (HNTs) in polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE), the modification of HNT surfaces was studied with three types of modifiers (polymethyl methacrylate [PMMA], sodium dodecyl sulfate [SDS] and carboxylic acid). The modified HNTs were characterized by Fourier-transform infrared (FTIR) spectrometry, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and contact angle measurements. The HNTs were used to reinforce the mechanical properties of PTFE. The mechanical results indicated that the tensile strength of the modified HNT-filled PTFE nanocomposites (F-HNT/PTFE) improved to an acceptable degree and Young's modulus increased significantly. The tribological results showed that the wear rate of F-HNT/PTFE decreased by 21–82 and 9–40 times compared to pure PTFE and the pristine F-HNT/PTFE, respectively.
Evidence on the association between maternal Hb concentration and preterm birth (PTB) risk is inconclusive. This paper aimed to explore whether women with anaemia or high Hb level before pregnancy would be at higher risk of PTB. We conducted a population-based cohort study with 2 722 274 women aged 20–49 years, who participated in National Free Pre-Pregnancy Checkups Project between 2013 and 2015 and delivered a singleton before 2016 in rural China. Logistic models were used to estimate OR and 95 % CI after adjusting for confounding variables. Restricted cubic spline models were applied to evaluate the dose–response relationships. A total of 192 819 (7·08 %) women had preterm deliveries. Compared with women with Hb of 110–149 g/l, the multivariable-adjusted OR for PTB was 1·19 (95 % CI 0·98, 1·44) for women with Hb<70 g/l, 1·01 (95 % CI 0·97, 1·03) for 70–99 g/l, 0·96 (95 % CI 0·95, 0·98) for 100–109 g/l, 1·04 (95 % CI 1·01, 1·06) for 150–159 g/l, 1·11 (95 % CI 1·05, 1·17) for 160–169 g/l and 1·19 (95 % CI 1·11, 1·27) for ≥170 g/l, respectively. The multivariable-adjusted OR for very PTB (VPTB) was 1·07 (95 % CI 1·03, 1·12) and 1·06 (95 % CI 1·01, 1·12) for women with Hb <110 and ≥150 g/l, compared with those with Hb of 110–149 g/l, respectively. Our study identified a U-shaped relationship between maternal preconception Hb concentration and PTB risk. Both preconception anaemia and high Hb level can significantly increase VPTB risk. Appropriate intervention for women with abnormal Hb levels before pregnancy is very necessary.
Since 2010, Jankowski’s Bunting Emberiza jankowskii has been listed as ‘Endangered’ on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. However, because no comprehensive surveys had been conducted, it was not known whether undiscovered populations existed elsewhere, so the population status of the species could not be assessed accurately. The aim of this study was to assess the breeding distribution and population size of Jankowski’s Bunting in China. Fifty sites in Inner Mongolia, and Jilin, Heilongjiang, Liaoning and Hebei Provinces were surveyed to locate suitable habitat and breeding populations of Jankowski’s Bunting. The surveyed sites included historical breeding distribution areas, wintering sites, and regions adjacent to historical breeding distribution areas. We confirmed that Jankowski’s Bunting has disappeared from most of its former breeding distributions, with the exceptions of Dagang, Xiergen and Tumiji. Additionally, 13 new breeding sites were discovered in Inner Mongolia. All currently known populations breed in Mongolian steppe-vegetation zones, with shrubs dominated by the natural Siberian apricot Prunus sibirica, indicating that this type of habitat is crucial for the survival of the species. Based on remote sensing, the suitable breeding habitat for Jankowski’s Bunting is estimated to be approximately 280 km2. The population size of Jankowski’s Bunting could range between 9,800 and 12,500 individuals, which is much higher than the numbers estimated in previous reports that were based on partial surveys. The suitable habitat remaining in Inner Mongolia would highly benefit from the implementation of the National Key Public Forest Protection Project. The population size of Jankowski’s Bunting is larger than previously estimated, but it is still threatened by habitat degradation and fragmentation, and our survey results reinforce the need for more research. The status of Jankowski’s Bunting in China still meets the IUCN criteria B2ab for an ‘Endangered’ species.
Heteroatom-doped carbon materials have attracted immense interest as advanced supercapacitor electrode materials due to their unique properties. A carbon cloth-supported, nitrogen-doped carbon “spider web” network full of macropores and mesopores is developed via the pyrolysis of polyaniline nanofibers in ammonia atmosphere. The presence of mesopores and macropores can provide ion-buffering reservoirs to shorten the ion diffusion distance to the interior part of the carbon network. Carbonization in ammonia introduced N heteroatoms through gas phase chemical reactions between ammonia and the oxygen functionalities on the carbon surface. The enhanced ion-accessible surface area and improved charge transfer rate can be achieved. The N-doped carbon “spider web” exhibited a high specific capacitance of 266 F/g at a scan rate of 2 mV/s. Even when the scan rate was increased to 500 mV/s, 61% of its capacitance could still be retained, evidencing its excellent rate performance. The demonstrated strategy is anticipated to be generally effective for preparing heteroatom-doped carbon electrodes with other polymers.
Halloysite nanotubes (HNTs)/polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) nanocomposites were prepared by the cold compression moulding method. The effects of addition of HNTs (HNTs ‘filling’) on the performances of PTFE were explored using X-ray diffraction, Fourier Transform infrared spectroscopy, scanning electron microscopy and thermogravimetric analysis which showed that HNTs were well dispersed in the PTFE matrix by means of physical mixing at lower contents of 2–5 wt.%; the introduction of HNTs into PTFE could improve the heat stability of the PTFE. Furthermore, the mechanical and tribological performances of the nanocomposites were measured to examine the filling effect. The tensile strength of the HNTs/PTFE nanocomposites at 2–5 wt.% HNTs content increased by ~3.5% while their wear rates decreased by 55–90% relative to pure PTFE, clear proof of the filling effect of HNTs with a high aspect ratio.
This paper presents a systematic study of the cross-flow-induced vibration on a spring-supported circular cylinder of diameter
placed in the wake of a fixed cylinder of smaller diameter
. The ratios
are varied from 0.2 to 1.0 and from 1.0 to 5.5, respectively, where
is the distance between the centre of the upstream cylinder to the forward stagnation point of the downstream cylinder. Extensive measurements are conducted to capture the cylinder vibration and frequency responses, surface pressure, shedding frequencies and flow fields using laser vibrometer, hot-wire, pressure scanner and particle image velocimetry techniques. Six distinct flow regimes are identified. It has been found that a violent vibration may erupt for the spring-supported cylinder, and its dependence on
is documented. A careful examination and analysis of the flow structure, along with the simultaneously captured pressure distribution around and vibration of the downstream cylinder, cast light upon the mechanisms behind this vibration and its sustainability. The roles of added mass, flow-induced damping and physical aspects in the process of initiating the vibration are discussed in detail.
In order to apportion the dust sources of mountain glaciers in western China, the Sr-Nd isotopic compositions of insoluble particles were determined in snow samples collected from 13 sites. The combined plot of 87Sr/86Sr and εNd(0) demonstrates a distinctive geographic pattern over western China, which can be classified into three regions from north to south. Samples from the Altai mountains show the lowest 87Sr/86Sr ratio and the highest εNd(0) value, similar to the data of deserts in the north of China such as the Gurbantunggut desert. Samples from the southern Tibetan Plateau (TP) and Himalaya show the highest 87Sr/86Sr and lowest εNd(0) values, resembling the local and regional dust sources found in the southern TP and Himalaya-India region. Samples from the Tien Shan and northern Tibetan Plateau exhibit intermediate 87Sr/86Sr and εNd(0) values, similar to the data reported for the northern margin of the TP (NM_TP). However, three sampling sites, JMYZ (Jiemayangzong) located in the Himalaya and ZD (Zadang) and YL (Yulong) located in the southeast TP, presented distinctive Sr-Nd isotopic signatures typical of the NM_TP, suggesting potential long-range and high-altitude dust transport across the TP.
In this work, the hybrid carbon nanofibers (Cu2O/CNFs) containing cuprous oxide (Cu2O) nanoparticles were prepared by a convenient electrospinning method and following a carbonization treatment. The morphology, composition, and microstructure of the Cu2O/CNFs were characterized by scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, and X-ray diffractometer. The as-prepared Cu2O/CNFs exhibited a stronger absorption in the range of 250–700 nm. The band gap energy of the Cu2O/CNFs was estimated to be 2.0 eV. Due to the synergistic effect between photocatalytic activity of Cu2O and excellent adsorption capacity of CNFs, the obtained Cu2O/CNFs exhibited excellent photocatalytic activity for degradation of rhodamine B (RhB) and phenol. The possible mechanism for degradation of RhB and phenol degradation were also discussed. The resultant hybrid carbon composites offer the significant advantages, such as low dosage, high catalytic activity, easy recycling, and excellent stability. We hope that the resultant hybrid composite Cu2O/CNFs could be applied as catalytic materials for further application in the future.
Toxoplasmosis is a serious zoonoses disease and opportunistic, and can be life-threatening. Dexamethasone (DEX) is widely used in the clinic for treatment of inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. However, long-term use of DEX is often easy to lead to acute toxoplasmosis in patients, and the potential molecular mechanism is still not very clear. The aims of this study were to investigate the effect of DEX on proliferation of Toxoplasma and its molecular mechanisms, and to establish the corresponding control measures. All the results showed that dexamethasone could enhance the proliferation of Toxoplasma gondii tachyzoites. After 72 h of DEX treatment, 566 (±7) tachyzoites were found in 100 host cells, while only 86 (±8) tachyzoites were counted from the non-treated control cells (P < 0·01). Gas chromatography (GC) analysis showed changes in level and composition of fatty acids in DEX-treated host cells, and T. gondii. Fish oil was added as a modulator of lipid metabolism in experimental mice. It was found that mice fed with fish oil did not develop the disease after infection with T. gondii, and the structure of fatty acids in plasma changed significantly. The metabolism of fatty acid in the parasites was limited, and the desaturase gene expression was downregulated. These results indicate that the molecular mechanism of dexamethasone to promote the proliferation of T. gondii may be that dexamethasone induces the change of fatty acids composition of tachyzoites and host cells. Therefore, we recommend supplementation of fatty acid in immunosuppressive and immunocompromised patients in order to inhibit toxoplasmosis.
It has been reported that up to 42% of the population aged over 60 are affected by mild cognitive impairment (MCI) worldwide. This study aims to investigate the prevalence and progression of MCI through a meta-analysis.
We searched Embase and PubMed for relevant literature. Stable disease rate (SR), reversion rate (RR), dementia rate (DR), and Alzheimer's disease rate (AR) were used to evaluate the progression of MCI. The prevalence and progression rates were both obtained by reported percentile and indirect data analysis. Additionally, we carried out sensitivity analysis of each index by excluding some studies due to influence analysis with the most publication bias.
Effect size (ES) was used to present adjusted overall prevalence (16%) and progression rates including SR (45%), RR (15%), DR (34%), and AR (28%) of MCI. Compared with clinic-based outcomes, MCI prevalence, SR, and RR are significantly higher in community, while DR and AR are lower. Despite significant heterogeneity found among the studies, no publication bias was observed.
Age and gender were observed to be associated with MCI, in which age was considered as an impact factor for DR. The strong heterogeneity may result from variations in study design and baselines. Standardized MCI criteria were suggested to systematically evaluate MCI in the future.
Failure of metallic materials due to plastic and/or creep deformation occur by the emergence of necking, microvoids, and cracks at heterogeneities in the material microstructure. While many traditional deformation modeling approaches have difficulty capturing these emergent phenomena, the discrete element method (DEM) has proven effective for the simulation of materials whose properties and response vary over multiple spatial scales, e.g., bulk granular materials. The DEM framework inherently provides a mesoscale simulation approach that can be used to model macroscopic response of a microscopically diverse system. DEM naturally captures the heterogeneity and geometric frustration inherent to deformation processes. While DEM has recently been adapted successfully for modeling the fracture of brittle solids, to date it has not been used for simulating metal deformation. In this paper, we present our progress in reformulating DEM to model the key elastic and plastic deformation characteristics of FCC polycrystals to create an entirely new crystal plasticity modeling methodology well-suited for the incorporation of heterogeneities and simulation of emergent phenomena.
In this paper, field effect transistors (FET) based on different kinds of non-graphene materials are introduced, which are MoS2, WSe2 and black phosphorus (BP). Those devices have their unique features in fabrication process compared with conventional FETs. Among them, MoS2 FET shows better electrical characteristics by applying a SiO2 protective layer; WSe2 FET is fabricated based on a new low pressure chemical vapor deposition (LPCVD) method; BP FET acquires high on/off ratio and high hole mobility by using a simple dry transfer method. Those novel non-graphene materials inspire new design and fabrication process of basic logic device.
Auditory verbal hallucinations (AVHs) have been associated with deficits
in auditory and speech-related networks. However, the resting-state
cerebral blood flow (CBF) alterations specific to AVHs in schizophrenia
To explore AVH-related CBF alterations in individuals with
In total, 35 individuals with schizophrenia with AVHs, 41 individuals
with schizophrenia without AVHs and 50 controls underwent arterial spin
labelling magnetic resonance imaging. The CBF differences were voxel-wise
compared across the three groups.
We found AVH-specific CBF increase in the right superior temporal gyrus
and caudate, and AVH-specific CBF decrease in the bilateral occipital and
left parietal cortices. We also observed consistent CBF changes in both
schizophrenia subgroups (i.e. those with and without AVHs) including
decreased CBF in the bilateral occipital regions, the left lateral
prefrontal and insular cortices, and the right anterior cingulate cortex
and increased CBF in the bilateral lateral temporal regions and putamen,
the left middle cingulate cortex and the right thalamus.
The AVH-specific CBF increases in the auditory and striatal areas and CBF
reductions in the visual and parietal areas suggest that there exists a
CBF redistribution associated with AVHs.
The novel Three-dimensional rambutan-like NiCo2O4 microspheres have been successfully coated onto surface of carbon nanofibers (CNFs) to form NiCo2O4–CNFs hybrids. The composition and microstructure of NiCo2O4–CNFs were characterized by the field-emission scanning electronmicroscopy, x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, transmission electron microscopy, and x-ray diffractometer. The obtained NiCo2O4–CNFs exhibited a specific capacity of 160 mAh/g at 1 mA/cm2 in 2 M potassium hydroxide aqueous solution. The specific capacity gradually increases with the increasing of cycles; and after 3000 cycles, the specific capacity still can be remained over 90%.
We investigate a degenerate parabolic variational inequality arising from optimal continuous exercise perpetual executive stock options. It is also shown in Qin et al. (Continuous-Exercise Model for American Call Options with Hedging Constraints, working paper, available at SSRN: http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2757541) that to make this problem non-trivial the stock's growth rate must be no smaller than the discount rate. Well-posedness of the problem is established in Lai et al. (2015, Mathematical analysis of a variational inequality modeling perpetual executive stock options, Euro. J. Appl. Math., 26 (2015), 193–213), Qin et al. (2015, Regularity free boundary arising from optimal continuous exercise perpetual executive stock options, Interfaces and Free Boundaries, 17 (2015), 69–92), Song & Yu (2011, A parabolic variational inequality related to the perpetual American executive stock options, Nonlinear Analysis, 74 (2011), 6583-6600) for the case when the underlying stock's expected return rate is smaller than the discount rate. In this paper, we consider the remaining case: the discount rate is bigger than the growth rate but no bigger than the return rate. The existence of a unique classical solution as well as a continuous and strictly decreasing free boundary is proved.