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This study aimed to describe outcomes in four women aged 28–34 years with central cytoplasmic granulation (CCG) of the oocytes who underwent in vitro fertilization/intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) using gonadotrophin-releasing hormone (GnRH) agonist to replace human chorionic gonadotrophin (hCG) as a trigger of final oocyte maturation. The initial ICSI procedure showed that all four women had CCG of the ooplasm and poor quality embryos. Subsequent ICSI used an antagonist protocol with a GnRH agonist trigger replacing the agonist protocol, plus hCG triggered ovulation. Ooplasm and embryo quality were improved in all four patients. All four became pregnant and gave birth to live infants. This study provides GnRH agonist triggering that may improve ooplasm granularity and embryo quality.
A humanoid robot developed to play multievent athletes like human has paved a way for interesting and popular robotics research. One of the great dreams is to develop a humanoid robot being able to challenge human athletes. Therefore, the challenge of humanoid robots to play archery against human is organized at Taichung, Taiwan, in HuroCup, FIRA 2018, on August 7th. The difficulties of developing humanoid robot are not just on playing archery. The humanoid robots for HuroCup must make use of the same hardware for the 10 events. In this paper, the design and implementation of the humanoid robot for archery are proposed under the trade off with other nine events. Therefore, the humanoid robot must have some special design and development on software. More specially, the humanoid robot must use professional bow to challenge human for archery competition. Therefore, in this paper, special shooting posture under constrained arm structure and motion planning of both arms for more torque to play professional bow are proposed. In addition, the further development of humanoid robot to improve archery shooting is summarized.
The condition of caregivers is important to the quality of care received by people with Parkinson’s disease (PD), especially at the late disease stages. This study addresses the distress placed on caregivers by participants’ neuropsychiatric symptoms at different stages of PD in Taiwan
This prospective study enrolled 108 people with PD. All participants were examined with the Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS), Neuropsychiatric Inventory (NPI), Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE), Cognitive Abilities Screening Instrument (CASI), and Clinical Dementia Rating (CDR) scale. Caregiver distress was measured using the Neuropsychiatric Inventory Caregiver Distress Scale (NPI-D). Statistical analysis was used to explore the PD-related factors that contribute to caregiver distress.
The mean follow-up interval in the 108 PD participants were 24.0 ± 10.2 months with no participant lost to follow-up due to death. NPI-distress (the sum of NPI caregiver distress scale across the 12 domains of the NPI) was positively correlated with NPI-sum (the total score across the 12 domains of the NPI) (r = 0.787, p < 0.001), CDR (r = 0.403, p < 0.001), UPRDS (r = 0.276, p = 0.004), and disease duration (r = 0.246, p = 0.002), but negatively correlated with CASI (r = −0.237, p = 0.043) and MMSE (r = −0.281, p < 0.001). Multiple linear regression analysis showed that only NPI-sum and disease duration were independently correlated with NPI-distress.
The disease duration and NPI-sum are independent predictors of caregiver distress in Taiwanese populations with PD. Early detection and reduction of neuropsychiatric symptoms in people with PD can help decrease caregiver distress.
We report a neonatal case of the use of alteplase for the lysis of a large aortic arch thrombus formed during extracorporeal membrane oxygenation support. Alteplase (0.1–0.15 mg/kg/hour) was infused for thrombolysis, and meanwhile, unfractionated heparin was administrated at 5–10 U/kg/hour for the anticoagulation purpose. Alteplase was successfully administered to this neonate after the repair of congenital diaphragmatic hernia on extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, and the patient survived without apparent catastrophic long-term complications. It is reasonable to consider alteplase therapy during extracorporeal membrane oxygenation support in this setting.
Accumulating evidence suggests that altered immunity contributes to the
development of major depressive disorder (MDD).
To examine whether complement factor H (CFH), a regulator of activation
of the alternative pathway of the complement cascade, confers
susceptibility to MDD.
Expression analyses were tested in 53 unmedicated people with MDD and 55
healthy controls. A two-stage genetic association analysis was performed
in 3323 Han Chinese with or without MDD. Potential associations between
CFH single nucleotide polymorphisms and age at MDD
onset were evaluated.
CFH levels were significantly lower in the MDD group at
both protein and mRNA levels (P = 0.009 and
P = 0.014 respectively). A regulatory variant in the
CFH gene, rs1061170, showed statistically significant
genotypic and allelic differences between the MDD and control groups
(genotypic P = 0.0005, allelic P =
0.0001). Kaplan–Meier survival analysis showed that age at onset of MDD
was significantly associated with the C allele of
rs1061170 (log rank statistic χ2 = 6.82, P =
0.009). The C-allele carriers had a younger age at onset
of MDD (22.2 years, s.d. = 4.0) than those without the C
allele (23.6 years, s.d. = 4.3).
CFH is likely to play an important role in the
development of MDD. rs1061170 has an important effect on age at onset of
MDD in Han Chinese and may therefore be related to early pathogenesis of
MDD, although further study is needed.
To assess the relative validity and reproducibility of the quantitative FFQ used in the Tzu Chi Health Study (TCHS).
The reproducibility was evaluated by comparing the baseline FFQ with the 2-year follow-up FFQ. The validity was evaluated by comparing the baseline FFQ with 3 d dietary records and biomarkers (serum folate and vitamin B12). Median comparison, cross-classification and Spearman correlation with and without energy adjustment and deattenuation for day-to-day variation were assessed.
TCHS is a prospective cohort containing a high proportion of true vegetarians and part-time vegetarians (regularly consuming a vegetarian diet without completely avoiding meat).
Subsets of 103, seventy-eight and 1528 TCHS participants were included in the reproducibility, dietary record-validity and biomarker-validity studies, respectively.
Correlations assessing the reproducibility for repeat administrations of the FFQ were in the range of 0·46–0·65 for macronutrients and 0·35–0·67 for micronutrients; the average same quartile agreement was 40%. The correlation between FFQ and biomarkers was 0·41 for both vitamin B12 and folate. Moderate to good correlations between the baseline FFQ and dietary records were found for energy, protein, carbohydrate, saturated and monounsaturated fat, fibre, vitamin C, vitamin A, K, Ca, Mg, P, Fe and Zn (average crude correlation: 0·47 (range: 0·37–0·66); average energy-adjusted correlation: 0·43 (range: 0·38–0·55); average energy-adjusted deattenuated correlation: 0·50 (range: 0·44–0·66)) with same quartile agreement rate of 39% (range: 35–45%), while misclassification to the extreme quartile was rare (average: 4% (range: 0–6%)).
The FFQ is a reliable and valid tool to rank relative intake of major nutrients for TCHS participants.
We conduct a comparative study mainly on two types of nc-Si based solar cell structures, a-Si/a-SiGe/nc-Si triple-junction and a-Si/nc-Si double-junction. We have attained comparable initial efficiency for the both solar cell structures, 10.8∼11.8% initial total area efficiency (85 - 95W over an area of 0.79 m2). For better compatibility to our installed manufacturing equipment, we deposit a-Si and a-SiGe component cells with the existing deposition machines. Only nc-Si bottom component cells are prepared in separate deposition machines tailored for nc-Si process. Material properties of nc-Si and TCO films are also studied by Raman spectra, SEM, and AFM.
The purpose of the present study was to evaluate the impact of a lifestyle intervention programme, combined with a daily low-glycaemic index meal replacement, on body-weight and glycaemic control in subjects with impaired glucose regulation (IGR). Subjects with IGR were randomly assigned to an intervention group (n 46) and a control group (n 42). Both groups received health counselling at baseline. The intervention group also received a daily meal replacement and intensive lifestyle intervention to promote healthy eating habits during the first 3 months of the study, and follow-up visits performed monthly until the end of the 1-year study. Outcome measurements included changes in plasma glucose, glycated Hb (HbA1c), plasma lipids, body weight, blood pressure and body composition (such as body fat mass and visceral fat area). The results showed that body-weight loss after 1 year was significant in the intervention group compared with the control group ( − 1·8 (sem 0·35) v.− 0·6 (sem 0·40) 2·5 kg, P< 0·05). The 2 h plasma glucose concentration decreased 1·24 mmol/l in the intervention group and increased 0·85 mmol/l in the control group (P< 0·05) compared with their baseline, respectively. A 5 kg body-weight loss at 1 year was associated with a decrease of 1·49 mmol/l in 2 h plasma glucose (P< 0·01). The incidence of normal glucose regulation (NGR) in the two groups was significantly different (P= 0·001). In conclusion, the combination of regular contact, lifestyle advice and meal replacement is beneficial in promoting IGR to NGR.
Sn/Ni–8.0 at.%V (Ni–7.0 wt%V) couples are prepared and the interfacial reactions at 210 and 250 °C are examined. In the early stage of reaction at 250 °C, a T phase is formed as a result of fast diffusion of Sn into the Ni–8.0 at.%V substrate. With a longer reaction, the outer region of the T phase transforms to a Ni-depletion layer, which has not been observed previously. Both the T phase and the Ni-depletion layer are analyzed using transmission electronic microscopy. This newly found Ni-depletion layer is composed of Sn and nanosize “VSn2(V2Sn3)” particulates. The solid/solid reaction paths in the Sn/Ni–8.0 at.%V couples evolve from Sn/T/Ni–V, Sn/Ni3Sn4/T/Ni–V to Sn/Ni3Sn4/VSn2(V2Sn3). During the liquid/solid reactions, the paths are liquid/T/Ni–V, liquid/liquid + Ni3Sn4/T/Ni–V, liquid/liquid + Ni3Sn4/liquid + VSn2(V2Sn3)/T/Ni–V, and liquid/liquid + Ni3Sn4/liquid + VSn2(V2Sn3).
We conducted an intensive survey of the Vulnerable eastern hoolock gibbon Hoolock leuconedys along the west bank of the Salween River in southern China, covering all known hoolock gibbon populations in China. We found 40–43 groups, with a mean group size of 3.9, and five solitary individuals. We estimated the total population to be < 200. In the nine groups for which we recorded composition, seven comprised one adult pair and 0–3 offspring and the other two groups both comprised one adult male and two adult females. The population is severely fragmented, in 17 locations, with the largest subpopulation containing only five family groups. Compared with the population in 1985 and 1994 five subpopulations have declined and gibbons have been extirpated from nine localities, although we discovered two previously unknown subpopulations. Commercial logging, illegal hunting, agricultural encroachment and population fragmentation pose serious threats to the future of H. leuconedys in China. An integrated conservation plan, including nature reserve establishment/expansion, enforcement of existing laws, conservation education, translocation and conservation-oriented research are needed to ensure the survival of H. leuconedys in China.
Bacillus cereus can produce α-amylase, which has important industrial production value and can endure high temperatures. The enzymatic characteristics of two α-amylases from B. cereus (B905 and B904) were studied. The results showed that both preserved their activity at 90–100°C. Their thermal stability and enzymatic activity did not depend on Ca2+. However, their protein molecular weights were obviously different. The structural genes of amy905 and amy904 were cloned successfully using the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and expressed in Escherichia coli. The amy904 and amy905 genes were 1362 bp and 1761 bp long and their protein molecular weights were about 55 kDa and 68 kDa, respectively.
To investigate a nosocomial outbreak of infection with multidrug-resistant (MDR) Acinetobacter baumannii in the intensive care units at China Medical University Hospital in Taiwan.
Prospective outbreak investigation.
Three intensive care units in a 2,000-bed university hospital in Taichung, Taiwan.
Thirty-eight stable patients in 3 intensive care units, all of whom had undergone an invasive procedure, were enrolled in our study. Ninety-four A. baumannii strains were isolated from the patients or the environment in the 3 intensive care units, during the period from January 1 through December 31, 2006. We characterized A. baumannii isolates by use of repetitive extragenic palindromic–polymerase chain reaction (REP-PCR) and random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) fingerprinting. The clinical characteristics of the source patients and the environment were noted.
All of the clinical isolates were determined to belong to the same epidemic strain of MDR A. baumannii by the use of antimicrobial susceptibility tests, REP-PCR, and RAPD fingerprinting. All patients involved in the infection outbreak had undergone an invasive procedure. The outbreak strain was also isolated from the environment and the equipment in the intensive care units. Moreover, an environmental survey of one of the intensive care units found that both the patients and the environment harbored the same outbreak strain.
The outbreak strain of A. baumannii might have been transmitted among medical staff and administration equipment. Routine and aggressive environmental and equipment disinfection is essential for preventing recurrent outbreaks of nosocomial infection with MDR A. baumannii.
The fabrication of surface nano-roughened zinc oxide (ZnO) is demonstrated by using a zinc/air fuel cell based chemical reactor. The chemical reaction creates the hydroxyl near the Zn and randomizes the pores with accumulated hydroxyls, which causes Zn to be oxidized to form thick and nano-roughened ZnO upon Zn anode or to be transformed into a soluble complex zincate ion in the excess electrolyte. Furthermore, controlling the quantity of (Zn(OH)2) and [Zn(OH)4]2− can significantly decrease the defect-related emission and blue-shift PL spectra to the UV range.
We compare the turn-on voltage, P-I, and EL responses between the MISLEDs made by Si-rich SiNx and SiOx films. Active layer thickness enlarged from 120 to 360 nm is achieved by lengthening deposition time from 10 to 30 min, which inevitably increases the forward turn-on voltage from 3 to 41 V. We observe that the forward turn-on voltage of SiNx based MISLED is only 10.43 V and that of SiOx based one is 69 V with the same film thickness of 100 nm. The tunneling-based carrier transport mechanism is dominated due to the exponential like V-I behavior, while the tunneling probability is strongly dependent on the height of the barriers between metal/dielectric and dielectric/nc-Si matrices. The P-I slope of SiNx and SiOx based MISLEDs are 1.6 and 115.2 mW/A, respectively. The SiNx MISLED reveals threshold current and voltage of only 4 A and 12 V due to lower barrier height of both ITO/SiNx and SiNx/nc-Si, whereas the threshold current and voltage of SiOx based MISLED are 400 A and 78 V, respectively. In comparison, the higher tunneling current through the SiNx MISLED fails to promote the larger external quantum efficiency of the MISLED, indicating that such lower barriers are not beneficial to the confinement of tunneling carriers and the enhancement of light-emission efficiency.
Si quantum dot (Si-QD) based multi-color metal oxide semiconductor lighting emission diodes (MOSLEDs) made on Si-rich SiOx grown by detuning RF plasma power in a plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) system are demonstrated. With the RF plasma powers increasing from 50 to 70 W at 10 W increment, the turn-on voltage and maximum electroluminescence (EL) power red-, green- and blue-color MOSLEDs increase from 70, 90 and 99 V and 7, 26 and 55 nW, respectively. The power-current slope of 0.51, 3.24 and 53.82 mW/A are obtained for these MOSLEDs with corresponding power conversion ratio (PCR) of 5.13×10-6, 2.52×10-5 and 2.47×10-4. Both the turn-on voltage and power slope linearly increase with enhancing thickness of the Si-QD based MOSLED.
Si-rich SiOX strip-loaded waveguide with silicon (Si) nanocrystals contributed amplified spontaneous emission at 750-850 nm with associated spectral linewidth of 140 nm is characterized. By using variable stripe length (VSL) method we demonstrate the optical gain and loss coefficients of 65 and 5 cm−1, respectively, for such a waveguide amplifier. The optical gain and loss coefficients are observed by fitting the one dimensional amplifier equation. The small-signal power gain of 18.4 dB at wavelength of 805 nm under He-Cd laser pumping of 40 mW at 325 nm is obtained from the SiO2/SiOX/SiO2 waveguide amplifier with length of 1 cm.
We reported the aqueous chemical method to fabricate the well-aligned ZnO/Al2O3 core-shell nanorod arrays (NRAs). The shell is composed of α-Al2O3 nanocrystals in amorphous Al2O3 layers. The photoluminescence (PL) measurements showed that the enhancement of near-band-edge emission in ZnO NRAs arrays due to the addition of Al2O3 shell was observed. The Al2O3 shell layer resulting in flatband effect near ZnO surface leads to a stronger overlap of the wavefunctions of electrons and holes in the ZnO core, further enhancing the NBE emission.
Photoluminescence (PL) intensity and wavelength control of Si-rich SiOx film and Si-rich SiOx based MOSLED achieved by detuning plasma power (RF power) during plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD) growth is investigated. The peak of PL spectrum blue-shifts from 780 to 400 nm by modifying the RF power form 20 to 70 W during PECVD growth. The average sizes of Si nanocluster under RF power of 60 and 70W are 2.61 and 1.83 nm, respectively. The EL color of Si nanocrystal (nc-Si) based MOSLEDs can be tunable among orange-red, green and blue colors by growing the SiOx films with PECVD under different RF power. Under RF power from 50 to 70W, the turn-on voltage of nc-Si based MOSLEDs increases from 26 to 60 V, the optical power also increases from 1.6 W/cm2 to 9.7 W/cm2 and the power-current slope are 0.51, 3.24 and 62.92 mW/A, respectively.
The memory effect of MOS diodes made on Si substrate with Si nanocrystals (NC-Si) and interfacial Si nano-pyramids deposited by PECVD at different ICP powers is characterized. TEM analysis on the NC-Si reveals that the NC-Si average size are around 3.9±1.1 nm and 4.7±0.7 nmwhen grown at ICP power of 20 W and 30 W, respectively. The interfacial Si nano-pyramids can only be observed by growing at 30 W or larger. The density of NC-Si of 4.4 × 1018 and 5.6 × 1018 cm−3 are relatively in good agreement with the corresponding PL intensities of 45 and 73 count/nm, respectively, for 20 and 30-W grown SiOx samples.. The C–V curves of the NC-Si embedded MOSLEDs show flat-band voltage shift of 0.74 and 18.46 Vfor 20 and 30-W samples, respectively. The C-V hysteresis width also increases by enlarging the range of sweeping voltage. A strong correlation between the size/density of Si nanocrystals and the flatband voltage difference has been concluded. In the case of the C–t measurement, the charging and discharging behaviors were found to depend on charging conditions. Finally, the relationship of the electron/hole charge density with the retention time is analyzed. Our data shows the charge loss rate of 1.3 % for electron is better at 20-Wsample, but the charge loss rate of 0.23 % for hole is better at 30-Wsample with Si NCs embedded in MOSLED after 102 s.
We have demonstrated the blue and yellow electroluminescence of MOSLEDs made on Si-rich SiOx film with buried Si nanoclusters of different sizes. The situation of dehydrogenation of Si nanocrystals within the SiOx film becomes more pronounced then the re-growth of SiO2 matrix along with the prolongation of annealing time period. A linear variation on the O/Si composition ratio of the Si-rich SiOx film related to the deposition recipe is reported, giving rise to the precipitation of Si nanocrystals with different size. With such synthesis conditions, the SiOx films result in relatively strong photoluminescence at blue and yellow colors. From the comparison of the I–V curves we can conclude that there is a linear decrease on the threshold voltage of the SiOx based MOSLEDs by decreasing the thickness of the SiOx layer. According to EL pattern, we could demonstrate that the yellow- and blue-light pattern can be observed at 5.5 and 7.25 MV/cm, respectively.