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The dipeptide DL-methionyl-DL-Methionine (Met-Met) has extremely low water solubility and better absorption than other methionine sources (such as DL-methionine and L-methionine) available in the market. Therefore, six diets (D1, D2, D3, D4, D5 and D6) containing 0 %, 0.07%, 0.15%, 0.21%, 0.28% and 0.38% Met-Met were formulated to investigate the effects of Met-Met on Oreochromis niloticus. The results indicated that percent weight gain and specific growth rate of fish fed with D2 and D3 diets were higher than those fed with D1, D4-D6 diets. The levels of total essential amino acid in whole body of fish fed with D3 and D4 diets were significantly higher than those fed the D1 diet. Superoxide dismutase activity and malondialdehyde content were no significant difference in fed the diet with or without Met-Met supplementation. Majority of reads derived from the fish intestines belonged to members of Fusobacteria, followed by Bacteroidetes, Proteobacteria. Diversity of intestinal microbiota and total antioxidant capacity in fish fed with D3 diet was significantly higher than that of other groups. Since due to the growth results the authors conclude the optimal proportion of Met was 0.61%, and the addition of Met-Met was 0.15% in O. niloticus.
This study analysed the epidemiological characteristics of imported cases of acute infectious diseases and compared these features by nationality in 25 border counties of Yunnan Province from 2008 to 2017 to inform prevention strategies. Surveillance data for the imported cases collected in the border counties were analysed to determine disease variety, seasonal patterns, infection site and personal demographics and these features were compared by patient nationality. A total of 12 820 imported cases were reported in the 25 border counties, with 5610 foreign cases and 7210 native cases. The disease spectrum was more diverse among foreign cases than among native cases. Both foreign and native cases were mostly imported from Myanmar. The shift in the number of foreign cases was greater than that of native cases after 2016. Ruili, a city, that shares a border with Myanmar, exhibited the greatest number of imported infections. Farmers, businessmen, women and preschool children were frequently diagnosed with infections. Multiple prevention strategies including disease screening at the border, health education before departure and health service provision to foreigners should be carried out to reduce the risk of autochthonous spreading and to avoid potential outbreaks. Furthermore, international collaboration in terms of sharing infectious disease data should be improved between China and neighbouring countries.
Maternal effects on offspring seeds are mainly caused by seed position on, and the abiotic environment of, the mother plant. Seed heteromorphism, a special form of position effect, is the production by an individual plant of morphologically distinct seed types, usually with different ecological behaviours. Seed heteromorphism is assumed to be a form of bet hedging and provides an ideal biological model to test theoretical predictions. Most studies of maternal effects on seeds have focused on abiotic environmental factors and changes in mean seed traits of offspring. Suaeda salsa is an annual halophyte that produces dimorphic seeds within the same inflorescence. We tested the hypothesis that plants grown from brown seeds of S. salsa have a higher offspring brown seed:black seed morph ratio and variance in seed size than plants from black seeds. Results from a pot experiment showed that plants grown from brown seeds had a higher brown seed:black seed ratio than plants grown from black seeds. This is the first layer of dynamic bet hedging. Brown seeds had higher size variation than black seeds, and seeds produced by plants from brown seeds also had higher seed size variation than plants grown from black seeds. This is the second layer of dynamic bet hedging. Thus, the maternal effect of seed heteromorphism is dual dynamic bet hedging. Furthermore, for seed traits we verified for the first time the theoretical prediction that an increase in offspring size variability induces an increase in the mean size of offspring.
Acts of financial misconduct in business affect firms in many negative ways. Therefore, why do certain misdemeanants repeatedly commit these acts? We suggest that financial misdemeanants with different social networks will perceive the costs and benefits of committing financial frauds differently, thereby affecting the likelihood of committing financial frauds in the future. To be specific, we suggest that politically connected misdemeanants are less likely to recommit financial frauds, while misdemeanants at interlock network center are more likely to recommit financial frauds. In addition, we propose that misdemeanants are less likely to recommit financial frauds when their partners in the interlock network community are punished for financial frauds. To test our theory, we collected panel data from Chinese listed firms from 2005 to 2014 and employed event history analysis (EHA).
Isolated gametes can be used to investigate fertilization mechanisms, and probe distant hybridization between different species. Pollen grains of wheat and Setaria viridis are tricellular, containing sperm cells at anthesis. Sperm from these plants were isolated by breaking open pollen grains in a osmotic solution. Wheat ovules were digested in an enzyme solution for 20 min, and then transferred to an isolation solution without enzymes to separate egg cells from ovules. The fusion of wheat egg cells with wheat and S. viridis sperm was conducted using an electro-fusion apparatus. Under suitable osmotic pressure (10% mannitol), calcium concentration of 0.001% (CaCl2·2H2O), and a 30–35 V alternating electric field for 15 s, egg cells and sperm adhered to each other and became arranged in a line. Electroporation of the plasma membrane of egg cells and sperm using a 300–500 V direct-current electric field (45 µs amplitude pulse) caused them to fuse.
We present conditions for a set of matrices satisfying a permutation identity to be simultaneously triangularizable. As applications of our results, we generalize Radjavi’s result on triangularization of matrices with permutable trace and results by Yan and Tang on linear triangularization of polynomial maps.
Maternal one-carbon metabolism during pregnancy is crucial for fetal development and programming by DNA methylation. However, evidence on one-carbon biomarkers other than folate is lacking. We, therefore, investigated whether maternal plasma methyl donors, that is, choline, betaine and methionine, are associated with birth outcomes. Blood samples were obtained from 115 women during gestation (median 26·3 weeks, 90 % range 22·7–33·0 weeks). Plasma choline, betaine, methionine and dimethylglycine were measured using HPLC-tandem MS. Multivariate linear and logistic regression models were used to estimate the association between plasma biomarkers and birth weight, birth length, the risk of small-for-gestational-age and large-for-gestational-age (LGA). Higher level of maternal betaine was associated with lower birth weight (–130·3 (95 % CI –244·8, –15·9) per 1 sd increment for log-transformed betaine). Higher maternal methionine was associated with lower risk of LGA, and adjusted OR, with 95 % CI for 1 sd increase in methionine concentration was 0·44 (95 % CI 0·21, 0·89). Stratified analyses according to infant sex or maternal plasma homocysteine status showed that reduction in birth weight in relation to maternal betaine was only limited to male infants or to who had higher maternal homocysteine status (≥5·1 µmol/l). Higher maternal betaine status was associated with reduced birth weight. Maternal methionine was inversely associated with LGA risk. These findings are needed to be replicated in future larger studies.
A high energy electron density modulator from a high-intensity laser standing wave field is studied herein by investigating the ultrafast motion of electrons in the field. Electrons converge at the electric field antinodes, and the discrete electron density peaks modulated by the field located at the corresponding laser phases of kx = nπ, (n = 0, 1, 2, …), that is, the modulation period is 1/2 the wavelength of the individual laser. We also discussed the influence of the laser parameters such as laser intensity and waist size on the beam modulator. It is shown that a long interaction length (waist) or sufficiently high field intensity is essential for relativistic electron density modulation.
Major depressive disorder (MDD) is a leading cause of disability worldwide and influenced by both environmental and genetic factors. Genetic studies of MDD have focused on common variants and have been constrained by the heterogeneity of clinical symptoms.
We sequenced the exome of 77 cases and 245 controls of Han Chinese ancestry and scanned their brain. Burden tests of rare variants were performed first to explore the association between genes/pathways and MDD. Secondly, parallel Independent Component Analysis was conducted to investigate genetic underpinnings of gray matter volume (GMV) changes of MDD.
Two genes (CSMD1, p = 5.32×10−6; CNTNAP5, p = 1.32×10−6) and one pathway (Neuroactive Ligand Receptor Interactive, p = 1.29×10−5) achieved significance in burden test. In addition, we identified one pair of imaging-genetic components of significant correlation (r = 0.38, p = 9.92×10−6). The imaging component reflected decreased GMV in cases and correlated with intelligence quotient (IQ). IQ mediated the effects of GMV on MDD. The genetic component enriched in two gene sets, namely Singling by G-protein coupled receptors [false discovery rate (FDR) q = 3.23×10−4) and Alzheimer Disease Up (FDR q = 6.12×10−4).
Both rare variants analysis and imaging–genetic analysis found evidence corresponding with the neuroinflammation and synaptic plasticity hypotheses of MDD. The mediation of IQ indicates that genetic component may act on MDD through GMV alteration and cognitive impairment.
In this paper, a dynamic model of a seven-joints manipulator operated in a zero-g simulation system is established. The errors of the friction, the suspension force, and the flexible deformation of arms are considered. Furthermore, the unloading ratio, which can evaluate the performance of the simulation system, is presented. It can reflect the level of similarity between the system and the space environment directly and effectively. The results of experimental and theoretical analyses verify the correctness of the model. It helps us to get the joint torques when the actual space manipulator without the torque sensor operates in this system and guarantees the safety of the experiments.
In this paper, we reported both the experimental demonstration and theoretical analysis of a Raman fiber laser based on a master oscillator–power amplifier configuration. The Raman fiber laser adopted the dual-wavelength bidirectional pumping configuration, utilizing 976 nm laser diodes and 1018 nm fiber lasers as the pump sources. A 60-m-long
ytterbium-doped fiber was used to convert the power from 1070 to 1124 nm, realizing a maximum power output of 3.7 kW with a 3 dB spectral width of 6.8 nm. Moreover, we developed a multi-frequency model taking into consideration the Raman gain spectrum and amplified spontaneous emission. The calculated spectral broadening of both the forward and backward laser was in good agreement with the experimental results. Finally, a 1.5 kW, 1183 nm second-order Raman fiber laser was further experimentally demonstrated by the addition of a 70-m-long germanium-doped passive fiber.
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.
There is a dearth of data on the iodine balance studies of Chinese population. In the present study, we aimed to explore the appropriate recommended nutrient intake (RNI) of iodine based on healthy Chinese women. A 4-week study was conducted in twenty-five Chinese euthyroid women. Uniform diets with different iodine contents were provided in two different periods, in which non-iodised salt was given in the first 3 weeks, followed by 1 week of iodised salt administration. The total iodine intake from diet, water and air as well as the total iodine excretion through urine, faeces and respiration were monitored and determined. The sweat iodine loss was also considered. Moreover, the regression curve model was established between the 24 h iodine intake and 24 h iodine excretion. The 24 h iodine intake in the two periods was 194·8 (sd 62·9) and 487·1 (sd 177·3) μg/d, respectively. The 24 h iodine excretion was 130·9 (sd 39·5) and 265·4 (sd 71·8) μg/d, respectively. Both 24 h iodine intake and 24 h iodine excretion of the two periods were significantly different (all P<0·05). The iodised salt contributed approximately 62·7 % of the total daily iodine intake. Moreover, 92·3 % (277/300) of samples were in positive balance, while twenty-three cases were in negative balance. Our data show that the estimated average requirement for iodine was 110·5 μg/d. Therefore, the RNI for iodine to non-pregnant, non-lactating Chinese women was 154·7 μg/d.
In inertial confinement fusion experiments that involve short-laser pulses such as fast ignition (FI), diagnosis of neutrons is usually very challenging because high-intensity γ rays generated by short-laser pulses would mask the much weaker neutron signal. In this paper, fast-response scintillators with low afterglow and gated microchannel plate photomultiplier tubes are combined to build neutron time-of-flight (nTOF) spectrometers for such experiments. Direct-drive implosion experiments of deuterium-gas-filled capsules were performed at the Shenguang-II Upgrade (SG-II-UP) laser facility to study the compressed fuel areal density (〈ρR〉) and evaluate the performance of such nTOF diagnostics. Two newly developed quenched liquid scintillator detectors and a gated ultrafast plastic scintillator detector were used to measure the secondary DT neutrons and primary DD neutrons, respectively. The secondary neutron signals were clearly discriminated from the γ rays from (n, γ) reactions, and the compressed fuel areal density obtained with the yield-ratio method agrees well with the simulations. Additionally, a small scintillator decay tail and a clear DD neutron signal were observed in an integrated FI experiment as a result of the low afterglow of the oxygen-quenched liquid scintillator.
Fertilization in higher plants induces many structural and physiological changes in the fertilized egg, and represents the transition from the haploid female gamete to the diploid zygote, the first cell of a sporophyte. Some changes are induced extremely rapidly following fusion with sperm cells and are the preclusions of egg activation. This review focuses on the early changes that occur in the egg after fusion with sperm cells, but before nuclear fusion. Reported changes include cell shrinkage, cell wall formation, polarity change, oscillation in Ca2+ concentration, and DNA synthesis. In addition, the current understanding of egg activation is summarized and the possible functional relevance of the changes is explored.
The study of chaotic vibration for multidimensional PDEs due to nonlinear boundary conditions is challenging. In this paper, we mainly investigate the chaotic oscillation of a two-dimensional non-strictly hyperbolic equation due to an energy-injecting boundary condition and a distributed self-regulating boundary condition. By using the method of characteristics, we give a rigorous proof of the onset of the chaotic vibration phenomenon of the zD non-strictly hyperbolic equation. We have also found a regime of the parameters when the chaotic vibration phenomenon occurs. Numerical simulations are also provided.
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.
A compact dual-wideband (DWB) bandpass filter utilizing open-shorted coupled lines (OSCL) is proposed in this paper. The introduction of the folded structure not only reduces the overall size but also contribute to the split of the transmission zero (TZ), which improves the selectivity effectively. Six transmission poles and five TZs are realized utilizing the shorted-circuit stub and OSCL. The characteristic of the flexible adjustment method of TZs guarantees an independently wide adjustable range of the bandwidth. For demonstration, a DWB filter (3 dB bandwidth 120 and 28%, respectively) is designed and fabricated. The filter is compact and has the characteristics of extraordinary wide bandwidth, low insertion loss, as well as high selectivity.
To investigate the protein-sparing effect of α-lipoic acid (LA), experimental fish (initial body weight: 18·99 (sd 1·82) g) were fed on a 0, 600 or 1200 mg/kg α-LA diet for 56 d, and hepatocytes were treated with 20 μm compound C, the inhibitor of AMP kinase α (AMPKα), treated for 30 min before α-LA treatment for 24 h. LA significantly decreased lipid content of the whole body and other tissues (P<0·05), and it also promoted protein deposition in vivo (P<0·05). Further, dietary LA significantly decreased the TAG content of serum and increased the NEFA content of serum (P<0·05); however, there were no significant differences among all groups in the hepatopancreas and muscle (P>0·05). Consistent with results from the experiment in vitro, LA activated phosphorylation of AMPKα and notably increased the protein content of adipose TAG lipase in intraperitoneal fat, hepatopancreas and muscle in vivo (P<0·05). Meanwhile, LA significantly up-regulated the mRNA expression of genes involved in fatty acid β-oxidation in the same three areas, and LA also obviously down-regulated the mRNA expression of genes involved in amino acid catabolism in muscle (P<0·05). Besides, it was observed that LA significantly activated the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) pathway in muscle of experimental fish (P<0·05). LA could promote lipolysis and fatty acid β-oxidation via increasing energy supply from lipid catabolism, and then, it could economise on the protein from energy production to increase protein deposition in grass carp. Besides, LA might directly promote protein synthesis through activating the mTOR pathway.
A new unambiguous tracking technique based on combined correlation functions for sine Binary Offset Carrier (BOC) signals is proposed in this paper. The key to this method is to exploit two types of local reference signals: the BOC signal and a linear combination of a series of BOC signals with different delays. They are both correlated with the received signals. Then, a correlation function without any positive side peaks is obtained by multiplying the two correlation results to make tracking completely unambiguous. Theoretical analysis and simulation in the tracking stage show that the proposed method has the best code tracking accuracy among the method tracking BOC signals like Binary Phase-Shift Keying signals (BPSK-LIKE), the Pseudo correlation function based Unambiguous Delay Lock Loop (PUDLL), Symmetrical Pulse Ambiguity Removing (SPAR) technique, the method proposed by Shen Feng (SF) and the two methods proposed by Yan Tao (YT-V1 and YT-V2). In multipath environments, the proposed method has the best anti-multipath performance of all the tracking methods mentioned above. In conclusion, the proposed method can completely eliminate ambiguity and has significant performance advantages compared with the methods mentioned above.