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The past 20 years have seen major public health emergencies and natural disasters, including the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome outbreak caused by the SARS-associated coronavirus (SARS-CoV) in 2003; the Wenchuan earthquake in 2008; and the novel coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) of 2019, which caused mass casualties, infections, and panic. These also resulted in complex demands for medical resources and information, and a shortage of human resources for emergency responses. To address the shortage of human resources required for these emergency responses, Chinese dental professionals made useful contributions. From this work, deficiencies in emergency response training and opportunities for the expansion of rescue capabilities were identified, and relevant recommendations made.
Restless legs syndrome (RLS) is a neurological disorder characterized by an urge to move and uncomfortable sensations. Genetic studies have identified polymorphisms in up to 19 risk loci, including MEIS1 and BTBD9. Rodents deficient in either homolog show RLS-like phenotypes. However, whether MEIS1 and BTBD9 interact in vivo is unclear. Here, with C. elegans, we observed that the hyperactive egg-laying behavior caused by loss of BTBD9 homolog was counteracted by knockdown of MEIS1 homolog. This was further investigated in mutant mice with Btbd9, Meis1, or both knocked out. The double knockout mice showed an earlier onset of the motor deficit in a wheel running test but did not have increased sensitivity to heat stimuli as observed in single knock outs. Meis1 protein level was not influenced by Btbd9 deficiency, and Btbd9 transcription was not affected by Meis1 haploinsufficiency. Our results demonstrate that MEIS1 and BTBD9 do not regulate each other.
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.
The rhoptry kinase 18 of Toxoplasma gondii (TgROP18) has been identified as a key virulence factor that allows the parasite to escape from host immune defences and promotes its proliferation in host cells. Although much research is focused on the interaction between host cells and TgROP18, the development of monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against TgROP18 has not been reported till date. To produce mAbs targeting TgROP18, two hybridomas secreting mAbs against TgROP18, designated as A1 and T2, were generated using cell fusion technology. The subtypes of the A1 and T2 mAbs were identified as IgG3 λ and IgM κ, and peptide scanning revealed that the core sequences of the antigenic epitopes were 180LRAQRRRSELVFE192 and 351NYFLLMMRAEADM363, respectively. The T2 mAb specifically reacted with both T. gondii type I and Chinese I, but not with T. gondii type II, Plasmodium falciparum or Schistosoma japonicum. Finally, the sequences of heavy chain and light chain complementarity-determining regions of T2 were amplified, cloned and characterized, making the modification of the mAb feasible in the future. The development of mAbs against TgROP18 would aid the investigation of the molecular mechanisms underlying the modulation of host cellular functions by TgROP18, and in the development of strategies to diagnose and treat Toxoplasmosis.
Common seepweed [Suaeda glauca (Bunge) Bunge] is a common salt-tolerant weed species distributed across the agricultural regions of northern China. It produces dimorphic seeds with different phenotypic characteristics and seed sizes. However, there is no information regarding the germination biology of these dimorphic seeds. Studies were conducted to evaluate the effects of ecological factors such as temperature, light, pH, osmotic stress, salt concentration, and planting depth on seed germination and seedling emergence. The results showed that brown seeds were nondormant, whereas black seeds had an intermediate physiological dormancy. The germination percentage of brown seeds was more than 80% at all temperature regimes and light conditions, but the optimum germination occurred at the cold thermoperiod of 20/10 C. In contrast, less than 6% of black seeds germinated at all temperature regimes and light conditions. Eight weeks of cold stratification did not break the dormancy of black seeds, whereas low concentrations of gibberellic acid (0.1 and 1.0 mM) significantly increased seed germination. Removal of the testa of black seeds also promoted germination and produced normal seedlings. Brown seeds showed moderate tolerance to salt stress, with 16% germination percentage at a salt concentration of 600 mM NaCl. The germination of brown seeds was 38% at an osmotic potential stress of −0.8 MPa; above that, no germination was obtained. Brown seeds germinated well in a wide pH range (4 to 10), with a germination percentage higher than 95%. Seedling emergence percentage was higher than 90% at burial depths of 0 to 2 cm, while germination percentage severely decreased for brown seeds with burial depths >2 cm, indicating that shallow tillage could be an effective measure to minimize seed germination. Information gathered from this study will help to develop an effective protocols for controlling S. glauca.
The evolution of an
layer surrounded by air is experimentally studied in a semi-annular convergent shock tube by high-speed schlieren photography. The gas layer with a sinusoidal outer interface and a circular inner interface is realized by the soap-film technique such that the initial condition is well controlled. Results show that the thicker the gas layer, the weaker the interface–coupling effect and the slower the evolution of the outer interface. Induced by the distorted transmitted shock and the interface coupling, the inner interface exhibits a slow perturbation growth which can be largely suppressed by reducing the layer thickness. After the reshock, the inner perturbation increases linearly at a growth rate independent of the initial layer thickness as well as of the outer perturbation amplitude and wavelength, and the growth rate can be well predicted by the model of Mikaelian (Physica D, vol. 36, 1989, pp. 343–357) with an empirical coefficient of 0.31. After the linear stage, the growth rate decreases continuously, and finally the perturbation freezes at a constant amplitude caused by the successive stagnation of spikes and bubbles. The convergent geometry constraint as well as the very weak compressibility at late stages are responsible for this instability freeze-out.
Nonuniform dispersion and weak interfacial bonding between carbon nanotubes (CNTs) and Cu matrix are two critical issues for achieving high strength and good ductility of CNT/Cu composites. Here, acid-treated CNTs precoated with Ni coatings were used to enhance the dispersion uniformity of CNTs and interfacial bonding between CNTs and Cu matrix in the CNT/Cu composites fabricated through spark plasma sintering and subsequently cold rolling. Scanning electron microscopy analysis revealed the homogeneous dispersion of Ni-coated CNTs (Ni-CNTs) in the composite compared with uncoated CNTs. Transmission electron microscope observation indicated that Cu2O nanoparticles were in situ formed at the interface in Ni-CNT/Cu composite, where CNTs were uncovered by Ni coatings. After rolling, the distribution of Ni-CNTs transformed into ribbons aligning along the rolling direction. The ultimate tensile strength (UTS) of 261 MPa was achieved in rolled 1 vol% Ni-CNT/Cu composite, which was 24.3% higher than that before rolling. The UTS of 2 vol% Ni-CNT/Cu composite obviously decreased, which could be attributed to the agglomeration of Ni-CNTs in the Cu matrix due to the increased volume content.
Oxide inclusions such as gray spots are the main defects caused by rail flash butt welding (FBW). An appropriate temperature field and upsetting process are essential for the extrusion of joint impurities. This study constructed a thermomechanical coupling model for the solid-state upsetting process of rail FBW through a combination of finite element simulation and experiment. Subsequently, the effects of different temperature fields and upsetting parameters on the extrusion behavior of impurities were studied. The results show that when the lateral deformation of the joint is not considered, selecting the appropriate upsetting length and increasing the width of the high-temperature plastic zone are beneficial for the extrusion of harmful impurities. Moreover, using variable speed upsetting or increasing the speed of the early upsetting facilitates the extrusion of impurities. However, the impurities in the deeper areas of the rail are difficult to move, and they easily form gray spot defects if the oxide inclusions remain.
In this paper, a finite difference scheme on non-uniform staggered grids is proposed for wormhole propagation with the Darcy–Brinkman–Forchheimer framework in porous media by introducing an auxiliary flux variable to guarantee full mass conservation. Error estimates for the pressure, velocity, porosity, concentration and auxiliary flux with second-order superconvergence in different discrete norms are established rigorously and carefully on non-uniform grids. We also obtain second-order superconvergence for some terms of the
norm of the velocity on non-uniform grids. Finally, some numerical experiments are presented to verify the theoretical analysis and effectiveness of the proposed scheme.
Associations have been shown between father’s absence and menarcheal age, but most studies have focused on absence resulting from divorce, abandonment or death. Little research has been conducted to evaluate the effect on menarcheal age of paternal absence through migrant work. In a sample of 400 middle school students, this study examined the association between paternal migrant work and menarcheal age against a backdrop of extensive rural-to-urban migration in China. Data were collected through a self-reported questionnaire, including social-demographic characteristics, aspects of family relationships, information about father’s migrant work and age at menarche. After adjusting for BMI, parent marital status and perceived relationship with mother, lower self-perceived quality of father–daughter relationship (both ‘father present, relationship poor’ and ‘father absent, relationship poor’) and lower frequency of contact with the father were associated with higher odds for early menarche. These findings suggest that the assumption that father’s absence for work influences the timing of menarche needs to be examined in the context of the quality of the father–daughter relationship and paternal care, which appear to play a critical role in the timing of menarche. These findings also emphasize the importance of enhancing paternal involvement and improving father–daughter relationships in the development of appropriate reproductive strategy in daughters.
The multipath effect and Non-Line-Of-Sight (NLOS) reception of Global Positioning System (GPS) signals both serve to degrade performance, particularly in urban areas. Although receiver design continues to evolve, residual multipath errors and NLOS signals remain a challenge in built-up areas. It is therefore desirable to identify direct, multipath-affected and NLOS GPS measurements in order improve ranging-based position solutions. The traditional signal strength-based methods to achieve this, however, use a single variable (for example, Signal to Noise Ratio (C/N0)) as the classifier. As this single variable does not completely represent the multipath and NLOS characteristics of the signals, the traditional methods are not robust in the classification of signals received. This paper uses a set of variables derived from the raw GPS measurements together with an algorithm based on an Adaptive Neuro Fuzzy Inference System (ANFIS) to classify direct, multipath-affected and NLOS measurements from GPS. Results from real data show that the proposed method could achieve rates of correct classification of 100%, 91% and 84%, respectively, for LOS, Multipath and NLOS based on a static test with special conditions. These results are superior to the other three state-of-the-art signal reception classification methods.
This paper studies the allocation of active redundancies to coherent systems on the context that the base and redundancy components have mutual independent lifetimes. For systems with two symmetric components and systems with one component's minimal cut sets (minimal path sets) covering those of another, we derive sufficient conditions to compare the resultant system lifetimes. Some numerical examples are also presented to illustrate the theoretical results.
This paper is concerned with two frequency-dependent susceptible–infected–susceptible epidemic reaction–diffusion models in heterogeneous environment, with a cross-diffusion term modelling the effect that susceptible individuals tend to move away from higher concentration of infected individuals. It is first shown that the corresponding Neumann initial-boundary value problem in an n-dimensional bounded smooth domain possesses a unique global classical solution which is uniformly in-time bounded regardless of the strength of the cross-diffusion and the spatial dimension n. It is further shown that, even in the presence of cross-diffusion, the models still admit threshold-type dynamics in terms of the basic reproduction number
– i.e. the unique disease-free equilibrium is globally stable if
, while if
, the disease is uniformly persistent and there is an endemic equilibrium (EE), which is globally stable in some special cases with weak chemotactic sensitivity. Our results on the asymptotic profiles of EE illustrate that restricting the motility of susceptible population may eliminate the infectious disease entirely for the first model with constant total population but fails for the second model with varying total population. In particular, this implies that such cross-diffusion does not contribute to the elimination of the infectious disease modelled by the second one.
Sterol regulatory element binding protein 1 (SREBP1) has a central regulatory effect on milk fat synthesis. Lipopolysaccharides (LPS) can induce mastitis and cause milk fat depression in cows. SREBP1 is also known to be associated with inflammatory regulation. Thus, in the current study, we hypothesized that LPS-induced milk fat depression in dairy cow mammary epithelial cells (DCMECs) operates via decreased SREBP1 expression and activity. To examine the hypothesis, DCMECs were isolated and purified from dairy cow mammary tissue and treated with LPS (10 µg/ml). LPS treatment of DCMECs suppressed lipid-metabolism-related transcription factor SREBP1 mRNA expression, nuclear translocation and protein expression, leading to reduced triglyceride content. The transcription levels of acetyl-CoA carboxylase-1 and fatty acid synthetase were significantly down-regulated in DCMECs after LPS treatment, suggesting that acetyl-CoA carboxylase-1 and fatty acid synthetase involved in de novo milk fat synthesis was regulated by SREBP1. In summary, these results suggest that LPS induces milk fat depression in dairy cow mammary epithelial cells via decreased expression of SREBP1 in a time-dependent manner.
In this work, corrosion-resistant fluoridated Ca–Mg–P composite coatings were prepared on magnesium alloys via a hydrothermal assisted sol–gel process. All these coatings derived from Coating Sols with different F− concentrations are composed of fluoridated hydroxyapatite, magnesium hydroxide, and dittmarite. When F− concentration of Coating Sol is 0.03 M, the coating exhibited uniform and dense surface, and its thickness reached 32 μm, thus possessing a high charge transfer resistance of 312 ± 12.69 kΩ cm2 in simulated body fluid (SBF). Immersion test in SBF showed that this coating could quickly induce the formation of the mineralized layer, implying relatively high bioactivity. After 49 days of immersion, the original composite coating and newly formed mineralized layer reached 60 μm in thickness, providing effective long-term protection for magnesium alloys. These attractive results indicate that this fluoridated Ca–Mg–P composite coating is a promising protective coating on biodegradable magnesium and magnesium alloy implants for orthopaedic applications.
We previously reported four heterozygous missense mutations of MYH7, KCNQ1, MYLK2, and TMEM70 in a single three-generation Chinese family with dual Long QT and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy phenotypes for the first time. However, the clinical course among the family members was various, and the potential myocardial dysfunction has not been investigated.
The objective of this study was to investigate the echocardiographic and electrocardiographic characteristics in a genetic positive Chinese family with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy and further to explore the association between myocardial dysfunction and electric activity, and the identified mutations.
A comprehensive echocardiogram – standard two-dimensional Doppler echocardiography and three-dimensional speckle tracking echocardiography – and electrocardiogram were obtained for members in this family.
As previously reported, four missense mutations – MYH7-H1717Q, KCNQ1-R190W, MYLK2-K324E, and TMEM70-I147T – were identified in this family. The MYH7-H1717Q mutation carriers had significantly increased left ventricular mass indices, elevated E/e’ ratio, deteriorated global longitudinal stain, but enhanced global circumferential and radial strain compared with those in non-mutation patients (all p<0.05). The KCNQ1-R190W carriers showed significantly prolonged QTc intervals, and the MYLK2-K324E mutation carriers showed inverted T-waves (both p<0.05). However, the TMEM70-I147T mutation carriers had similar echocardiography and electrocardiographic data as non-mutation patients.
Three of the identified four mutations had potential pathogenic effects in this family: MYH7-H1717Q was associated with increased left ventricular thickness, elevated left ventricular filling pressure, and altered myocardial deformation; KCNQ1-R190W and MYLK2-K324E mutations were correlated with electrocardiographic abnormalities reflected in long QT phenotype and inverted T-waves, respectively.
Specific adipokines, such as adiponectin and resistin, are secreted from adipose tissue and are associated with the development of obesity. Supplementation of dietary SCFA can prevent and reverse high-fat-diet (HFD)-induced obesity. However, it is not clear whether SCFA ameliorate abnormal expression of adiponectin and resistin in the obese state. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of SCFA on adiponectin and resistin’s expressions in diet-induced obese mice, as well as the potential mechanisms associated with DNA methylation. C57BL/6J male mice were fed for 16 weeks with five types of HFD (34·9 % fat by wt., 60 % kJ) – a control HFD and four HFD with acetate (HFD-A), propionate (HFD-P), butyrate (HFD-B) and their admixture (HFD-SCFA). Meanwhile, a low-fat diet (4·3 % fat by wt., 10 % kJ) was used as the control group. The reduced mRNA levels of adiponectin and resistin in the adipose tissue of the HFD-fed mice were significantly reversed by dietary supplementation of acetate, propionate, butyrate or their admixture to the HFD. Moreover, the expressional changes of adiponectin and resistin induced by SCFA were associated with alterations in DNA methylation at their promoters, which was mediated by reducing the expressions of enzyme-catalysed DNA methyltransferase (DNMT1, 3a, 3b) and the methyl-CpG-binding domain protein 2 (MBD2) and suppressing the binding of these enzymes to the promoters of adiponectin and resistin. Our results indicate that SCFA may correct aberrant expressions of adiponectin and resistin in obesity by epigenetic regulation.
Organic carbon (OC) radiocarbon (14C) signatures in marine surface sediments are highly variable and the causes of this heterogeneity remain ambiguous. Here, we present results from a detailed 14C-based investigation of an Arabian Sea sediment, including measurements on organic matter (OM) in bulk sediment, specific grain size fractions, and OC decomposition products from ramped-pyrolysis-oxidation (RPO). Our results show that 14C ages of OM increase with increasing grain size, suggesting that grain size is an important factor controlling the 14C heterogeneity in marine sediments. Analysis of RPO decomposition products from different grain size fractions reveals an overall increase in age of corresponding thermal fractions from finer to coarser fractions. We suggest that hydrodynamic properties of sediment grains exert the important control on the 14C age distribution of OM among grain size fractions. We propose a conceptual model to account for this dimensionality in 14C variability that invokes two predominant modes of OM preservation within different grain size fractions of Arabian Sea sediment: finer (<63 µm) fractions are influenced by OM-mineral grain aggregation processes, giving rise to relatively uniform 14C ages, whereas OM preserved in coarser (>63 µm) fractions includes materials encapsulated within microfossils and/or entrained fossil (14C-depleted) OC hosted in detrital mineral grains. Our findings highlight the value of RPO for assessment of 14C age variability in sedimentary OC, and for assessing mechanisms of OM preservation in aquatic sediments.