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N-acetylaspartate (NAA) levels and serum brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) levels in patients with first-episode schizophrenia psychosis and age- and sex-matched healthy control subjects were investigated. In addition, plasma levels of homovanillic acid (HVA) and 3-methoxy-4-hydroxyphenylglycol (MHPG) were compared between the two groups.
Eighteen patients (nine males, nine females; age range: 13–52 years) were enrolled in the study, and 18 volunteers (nine males, nine females; age range: 15–49 years) with no current or past psychiatric history were also studied by magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) as sex- and age-matched controls.
Levels of NAA/Cr in the left basal ganglia (p = 0.0065) and parieto-occipital lobe (p = 0.00498), but not in the frontal lobe, were significantly lower in patients with first-episode schizophrenia psychosis than in control subjects. No difference was observed between the serum BDNF levels of patients with first-episode schizophrenia psychosis and control subjects. In regard to the plasma levels of catecholamine metabolites, plasma MHPG, but not HVA, was significantly lower in the patients with first-episode psychosis than in control subjects. In addition, a significantly positive correlation was observed between the levels of NAA/Cr of the left basal ganglia and plasma MHPG in all subjects.
These results suggest that brain NAA levels in the left basal ganglia and plasma MHPG levels were significantly reduced at the first episode of schizophrenia psychosis, indicating that neurodegeneration via noradrenergic neurons might be associated with the initial progression of the disease.
Astronomy in Japan has long history and has its own “light”. The foresight of leaders in the early 20th century helped Japan to become a founding member of the International Astronomical Union. In this paper, a brief description will show the growth in its more recent history with particular emphasis on two important issues: large research facilities and women participation. On the ground or above, the large observational facilities are nowadays outside of the land of Japan, not only in terms of physical presence but also the community they serve. Domestic membership of the Astronomical Society of Japan at the same time is expanding, thanks to the increased opportunities for women. Continuing global cooperation with more diverse composition of members are the keys for sustaining the growth to carry the astronomy in Japan with IAU into the next century, and hopefully to another planet.
As the IAU heads towards its second century, many changes have simultaneously transformed Astronomy and the human condition world-wide. Amid the amazing recent discoveries of exoplanets, primeval galaxies, and gravitational radiation, the human condition on Earth has become blazingly interconnected, yet beset with ever-increasing problems of over-population, pollution, and never-ending wars. Fossil-fueled global climate change has begun to yield perilous consequences. And the displacement of people from war-torn nations has reached levels not seen since World War II.
Enhancement of the quality of laser wake-field accelerated (LWFA) electron beams implies the improvement and controllability of the properties of the wake waves generated by ultra-short pulse lasers in underdense plasmas. In this work we present a compendium of useful formulas giving relations between the laser and plasma target parameters allowing one to obtain basic dependences, e.g. the energy scaling of the electrons accelerated by the wake field excited in inhomogeneous media including multi-stage LWFA accelerators. Consideration of the effects of using the chirped laser pulse driver allows us to find the regimes where the chirp enhances the wake field amplitude. We present an analysis of the three-dimensional effects on the electron beam loading and on the unlimited LWFA acceleration in inhomogeneous plasmas. Using the conditions of electron trapping to the wake-field acceleration phase we analyse the multi-equal stage and multiuneven stage LWFA configurations. In the first configuration the energy of fast electrons is a linear function of the number of stages, and in the second case, the accelerated electron energy grows exponentially with the number of stages. The results of the two-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations presented here show the high quality electron acceleration in the triple stage injection–acceleration configuration.
The galactopoietic effect of growth hormone (GH) in lactating ruminants is well established; however the mechanisms that mediate these effects are not well understood. The first objective of this study was to determine the effect of GH on the synthesis of the major casein and whey proteins. The second objective was to identify the genes and pathways that may be involved in mediating the effect of GH on milk synthesis. A single subcutaneous injection of a commercially available slow release formulation of GH (Lactatropin®), or physiological saline solution (control) was administered to non-pregnant dairy cows (n=4/group) in mid-late lactation. Milk samples were collected for composition analysis and mammary lobulo-alveolar tissue was collected postmortem 6 days post injection. Gene expression profiles were evaluated using either a 22 000 bovine complementary DNA microarray or quantitative PCR (qPCR), and microarrays were validated by qPCR. The yield of all the major casein and whey proteins was increased 32% to 41% in GH-treated cows, with the exception of α-lactalbumin yield which was elevated by 70% relative to controls. Treatment with GH treatment tended to increase the concentration of α-lactalbumin but had no effect on the concentration of any of the major milk proteins. Messenger RNA (mRNA) abundance of the major whey and casein genes, with the exception of α-s2-casein, was increased in response to GH compared with controls, which is consistent with the positive effect of GH on milk production. Treatment with GH treatment influenced the mRNA abundance of genes involved in cell growth and proliferation, transcriptional and translational regulation, actin cytoskeleton signalling, lipid metabolism and cell death. This study has provided new insights into the cell signalling that may be involved in mediating the effect of GH on milk production in the mammary gland of lactating dairy cows.
The redshift interval z = 2–3 is known as the cosmic noon that is the most active era of star formation across the Universe (Hopkins & Beacom 2006). In the past decade, many authors have investigated global properties of star-forming (SF) galaxies in this turbulent era, such as gas fractions and gaseous metallicities (e.g. Erb et al. 2006). With those achievements, we are going on to the next stage to understand more details i.e. those physical parameters in star-forming regions. Recent advent of near-infrared instruments typified by MOSFIRE on the Keck telescope, enable us with identifying the physical parameters of Hii regions in ‘typical’ SF galaxies individually (Steidel et al. 2014). Recent highlights suggest higher electron densities, higher ionization parameters, and harder UV radiation fields may be common.
In order to know how galaxy evolution physically correlates with the natures of their star-forming regions, we have explored relationships between the electron density (ne) of ionized gas from the oxygen line ratio and other physical properties, based on the deep spectra of Hα emitters at z = 2.5 by the MOSFIRE. MOSFIRE for the first time provides ne of the galaxies at high-z with a high level of confidence. The result shows the specific star formation rate (sSFR) and the SFR surface density (ΣSFR) are correlated with ne (Shimakawa et al. 2015). The ne-ΣSFR relation could be linked to the star formation law in Hii regions if we assume that hydrogen in Hii regions is fully-ionized. Otherwise, more active star formation per unit area (higher ΣSFRs), may cause higher ionization states. However, we need some specific concerns that obtained physical parameters should depend on the scale dependence, since typical size of Hii region is only <100 pc despite that we study physical states of entire galaxies. Thus we obtain surface-brightness-weighted and ensemble averaged line fluxes for the entire galaxy or the part that falls into the slit width (a few kpc scale size). The thirty meter telescope (TMT) is a powerful instrument to resolve such a difficulty, since its spatial resolution reaches <100 pc on the physical scale at z ~ 2 by AO assistance.
We have conducted 1.1 mm ALMA observations of a contiguous 105” × 50” or 1.5 arcmin2 window in the SXDF-UDS-CANDELS. We achieved a 5σ sensitivity of 0.28 mJy, giving a flat sensus of dusty star-forming galaxies with LIR ~6×1011L⊙ (if Tdust=40K) up to z ~ 10 thanks to the negative K-correction at this wavelength. We detected 5 brightest sources (S/N>6) and 18 low-significant sources (5>S/N>4; they may contain spurious detections, though). One of the 5 brightest ALMA sources (S1.1mm = 0.84 ± 0.09 mJy) is extremely faint in the WFC3 and VLT/HAWK-I images, demonstrating that a contiguous ALMA imaging survey uncovers a faint dust-obscured population invisible in the deep optical/near-infrared surveys. We find a possible [CII]-line emitter at z=5.955 or a low-z CO emitting galaxy within the field, allowing us to constrain the [CII] and/or CO luminosity functions across the history of the universe.
We have investigated an influence of positive polarization charges generated at an interface between GaN barrier/p-AlGaN EB (Electron Blocking) layer in a blue-LED. Simulation results suggested that such polarization charges caused an electron overflow from QWs. The simulation results also indicated that sufficient acceptor doping at the interface could neutralize the positive polarization charges and suppress the electron overflow. We then demonstrated the electron overflow caused by the positive polarization charges and its suppression with sufficient Mg doping at the interface by monitoring emissions from an additional second QW inserted between the p-EB layer and the p-GaN layer. Finally we conclude that the contribution of the electron overflow is not significant for the efficiency droop in blue-LEDs.
In the present study, the sub-gap states of amorphous In-Ga-Zn-O (a-IGZO) thin films treated with various process conditions have been evaluated by means of capacitance-voltage (C-V) characteristics and isothermal capacitance transient spectroscopy (ICTS). It was found that the space-charge densities of the a-IGZO decreased as the oxygen partial pressure was increased during the sputtering of a-IGZO thin films. The ICTS spectra for the 4, 8, and 12 % samples were similar and the peak positions were found to be around 1 × 10-2 s at 180 K. On the other hand, the peak position for the 20 % sample shifted to a longer time regime and was located at around 2 × 10-1 s at 180 K. The total densities of the traps for the 4, 8, and 12 % samples were calculated to be 5−6 × 1016 cm-3, while that for 20 % was one order of magnitude lower than the others. From Thermal desorption spectrometer, it was found that desorption of Zn atoms started at a temperature higher than 300 °C for the 4 % sample, while desorption of Zn was not observed for the 20 % sample. The introduction of the sub-gap states could be attributed to oxygen-rich and/or Zn-deficient defects in the a-IGZO thin films formed during thermal annealing.
It is shown that various spectroscopic methods based on measurements of X-ray spectra radiated from cluster targets can be used for estimation of the destruction degree of clusters by laser prepulses. These methods allow insight to be gained regarding the important issue of preservation of the dense cluster core at the moment of the arrival of the main laser pulse. In addition, they can be used for quantitative estimation of the size of the undestroyed parts of the clusters and also for measuring the temperature and density of the preplasmas produced by the laser prepulses.
The current trends in stimulated Brillouin scattering and optical phase conjugation are overviewed. This report is formed by the selected papers presented in the “Fifth International Workshop on stimulated Brillouin scattering and phase conjugation 2010” in Japan. The nonlinear properties of phase conjugation based on stimulated Brillouin scattering and photo-refraction can compensate phase distortions in the high power laser systems, and they will also open up potentially novel laser technologies, e.g., phase stabilization, beam combination, pulse compression, ultrafast pulse shaping, and arbitrary waveform generation.
Supracricoid laryngectomy with cricohyoidoepiglottopexy is an organ-preserving procedure used to treat laryngeal cancer. However, the post-operative neoglottis tends to be variable in form and difficult to predict.
We retrospectively analysed three-dimensional images reconstructed from multidetector-row computed tomography data for 21 patients, assessing arytenoid motion and minimum neoglottic gap cross-sectional area.
While mean transverse and coronal motion was similar for bilateral and unilateral arytenoids, movement along the sagittal axis was greater for unilateral than bilateral arytenoids. The neoglottic gap during respiration was wider in patients with bilateral arytenoids, but both groups had a similar neoglottic gap during phonation.
Anterior shifting of the unilateral arytenoid plays an important role in compensating for the inability to achieve neoglottic closure. These two results demonstrate that the unilateral arytenoid alone is capable of achieving sufficient neoglottic narrowing to compensate for the resected arytenoid. Three-dimensional analysis was useful to evaluate the physiological status of the neoglottis after supracricoid laryngectomy with cricohyoidoepiglottopexy.
Previously studied for its role in processing olfactory information in the antennal lobe, GABA also may shape development of the olfactory pathway, acting either through or on glial cells. Early in development, the dendrites of GABAergic neurons extend to the glial border that surrounds the nascent olfactory lobe neuropil. These neuropil glia express both GABAA and GABAB receptors, about half of the glia in acute cultures responded to GABA with small outward currents, and about a third responded with small transient increases in intracellular calcium. The neuronal classes that express GABA in vivo, the local interneurons and a subset of projection neurons, also do so in culture. Exposure to GABA in culture increased the size and complexity of local interneurons, but had no effect on glial morphology. The presence of glia alone did not affect neuronal morphology, but in the presence of both glia and GABA, the growth-enhancing effects of GABA on cultured antennal lobe neurons were eliminated. Contact between the glial cells and the neurons was not necessary. Operating in vivo, these antagonistic effects, one direct and one glia mediated, could help to sculpt the densely branched, tufted arbors that are characteristic of neurons innervating olfactory glomeruli.
Utilization of Hot Burnt Gas for Better Control of Combustion and Emissions
Recirculated hot burned gas has long been used to stabilize flames in continuous flow combustion systems, such as furnaces, boilers, gas turbines, and afterburners in jet engines . The recirculation is created by employing swirl vanes, bluff bodies, or baffle plates. The heat and radicals in the hot combustion products act as the ignition source for fresh mixtures of fuel and air flowing into the flame-stabilization region.
In the late 20th Century, air pollution by combustion-generated smoke, partially burned hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide, and nitric oxides, NOx, became a public concern. With the increasing stringency of the regulations for NOx emissions, recirculation of combustion products or exhaust-gas came to be used as one of the measures for controlling NOx formation. Exhaust-gas recirculation (EGR), for example, is extensively used in reciprocating engines for automobiles , where the engine exhaust gas is recirculated into the intake manifold in order to mix with fresh air. Another example is recirculation of combustion products in furnaces and boilers, which is sometimes called internal EGR. Most of the reduction of NOx emissions achieved by EGR is attributed to reduced peak flame temperatures that are due to increased specific heat capacity of the diluted mixtures, though some of the reduction is attributed to resulting slower NO formation that are due to reduced oxygen concentrations and increased carbon dioxide and water vapor concentrations.
Supracricoid laryngectomy with cricohyoidoepiglottopexy is an organ-preserving surgical technique used to treat laryngeal cancer. This procedure resects the vocal folds; however, it is unclear how the sound source and airway morphology are involved in phonation through the post-operative neoglottis.
Multidetector helical computed tomography scanning was performed on two patients who had undergone supracricoid laryngectomy with cricohyoidoepiglottopexy. The cricoid and arytenoid cartilages and the airway were visualised using three-dimensional images.
The mobility of the arytenoid cartilages was well preserved in the one patient with bilateral arytenoids, and in the other patient with only one arytenoid remaining. Two types of airway configuration were observed during phonation: one patient had a single stream airway, while the other had a combination of several streams.
In the patient with only one arytenoid remaining, the preserved arytenoid tended to be rotated excessively inward. Therefore, phonation may have also occurred in various airways followed by mucosal vibration, which may be a sound source.
Silicon-based films have gained much interest as protective coatings for transparent polymeric materials. In this study, SiOC(–H) thin films were deposited on polycarbonate (PC) or Si substrates from trimethylsilane (TrMS) gas diluted with He gas by atmospheric pressure plasma enhanced CVD (AP-PECVD) method with varying substrate temperature, and transparency and hardness of the films were investigated. The films exhibited a good optical transparency with an optical transmittance of about 90% irrespective of the substrate temperature, and the hardness increased from 0.6 to 1.3 GPa as the substrate temperature increased from 60 to 140°C. The results are discussed in terms of chemical structural changes in the films according to the substrate temperature.
The effect of Nb addition on phase equilibria among Ni (A1), Ni3Al (L12) and Ni3V (D022) phases was investigated in the Ni-rich Ni-Al-V ternary system. The addition of Nb to the Ni-Al-V ternary system shifts the three-phase coexisting region of A1 + L12 + D022 towards the Ni-rich side at 950 ºC. Nb is partitioned into the D022 phase more strongly than the A1 and L12 phases. These results suggest that the addition of Nb stabilizes the D022 phase against the A1 and L12 phases in the systems. The alloying element raises the temperature of a eutectoid-like reaction (A1→L12+D022) by ~30 ºC in the vertical section of Ni-Al-V ternary system at 75 at. % Ni.