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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.
Immiscible displacement in porous media is common in many practical applications. Under quasi-static conditions, the process is significantly affected by disorder of the porous media and the wettability of the pore surface. Previous studies have focused on wettability effects, but the impact of the interplay between disorder and contact angle is not well understood. Here, we combine microfluidic experiments and pore-scale simulations with theoretical analysis to study the impact of disorder on the quasi-static displacement from weak imbibition to strong drainage. We define the probability of overlap to link the menisci advancements to displacement patterns, and derive a theoretical model to describe the lower and upper bounds of the cross-over zone between compact displacement and capillary fingering for porous media with arbitrary flow geometry at a given disorder. The phase diagram predicted by the theoretical model shows that the cross-over zone, in terms of contact angle range, expands as the disorder increases. The diagram further identifies four zones to elucidate that the impact of disorder depends on wettability. In zone I, increasing disorder destabilizes the patterns, and in zone II, a stabilizing effect plays a role, which is less significant than that in zone I. In the other two zones, invasion morphologies are compact and fingering, respectively, independent of both contact angle and disorder. We evaluate the proposed diagram using pore-scale simulations, experiments in this work and in the literature, confirming that the diagram can capture the effect of disorder on displacement under different wetting conditions. Our work extends the classical phase diagrams and is also of practical significance for engineering applications.
Given the non-repeatability, complexity, and unpredictability of unconventional public health emergencies, building accurate models and making effective response decisions based only on traditional prediction–response decision-making methods are difficult. To solve this problem, under the scenario–response paradigm and theories on parallel emergency management and discrete event system (DES), the parallel simulation decision-making framework (PSDF), which includes the methods of abstract modeling, simulation operation, decision-making optimization, and parallel control, is proposed for unconventional public health emergency response processes. Furthermore, with the example of the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) response process, the evolutionary scenarios that include infected patients and diagnostic processes are transformed into simulation processes. Then, the validity and operability of the DES–PSDF method proposed in this paper are verified by the results of a simulation experiment. The results demonstrated that, in the case of insufficient prior knowledge, effective parallel simulation models can be constructed and improved dynamically by multi-stage parallel controlling. Public health system bottlenecks and relevant effective response solutions can also be obtained by iterative simulation and optimizing decisions. To meet the urgent requirements of emergency response, the DES–PSDF method introduces a new response decision-making concept for unconventional public health emergencies.
This is a copy of the slides presented at the meeting but not formally written up for the volume.
Description: Epitaxial thin films of the multiferroic BiFeO3 have been grown by molecular beam epitaxy in an adsorption-controlled growth regime where substrate temperature and bismuth oxide over pressure establish phase and stoichiometry control. 30 nm thick BiFeO3 films have been deposited directly on (001) SrTiO3 and SrRuO3/(110) DyScO3, and on (0001) GaN containing a 1 nm thick TiO2 overlayer to enable the epitaxial transition between (0001) GaN and (0001) BiFeO3. Films grown on (001) SrTiO3 possess rocking curves identical to that of the underlying substrate, e.g., a full width at half maximum (FWHM) in ù of 25 arc sec in the best case. This is over 40 times narrower than the best published result for epitaxial BiFeO3 films deposited by any technique. On all of the above substrates, the BiFeO3 films exhibit rhombohedral symmetry. The in-plane epitaxial alignment observed for BiFeO3/TiO2/(0001) GaN differs by a 30° in-plane rotation from that observed in previous work for BiFeO3/SrTiO3/TiO2/(0001) GaN. Specifically, our (0001) BiFeO3/TiO2/(0001) GaN is oriented in-plane with [10-10]BiFeO3 [11-20]GaN, accompanied by a 180° in-plane rotational twin variant. The results of this work will be discussed in the context of the interfacial and crystallographic orientation dependence on the ferroelectric, antiferromagnetic, and dielectric properties of this multiferroic.
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.
Although numerous studies have used functional neuroimaging to identify executive dysfunction in patients with bipolar disorder (BD), the findings are not consistent. The aim of this meta-analysis is to identify the most reliable functional anomalies in BD patients during performance of Executive Function (EF) tasks.
A web-based search was performed on publication databases to identify functional magnetic resonance imaging studies of BD patients performing EF tasks and a voxel-based meta-analytic method known as anisotropic Effect Size Signed Differential Mapping (ES-SDM) was used to identify brain regions which showed anomalous activity in BD patients compared with healthy controls (HC).
Twenty datasets consisting of 463 BD patients and 484 HC were included. Compared with HC, BD patients showed significant hypo-activation or failure of activation in the left striatum (p = 0.00007), supplementary motor area (BA 6, p = 0.00037), precentral gyrus (BA 6, p = 0.0014) and cerebellum (BA 37, p = 0.0019), and hyper-activation in the left gyrus rectus (BA 11, p ≈ 0) and right middle temporal gyrus (BA 22, p = 0.00031) during performance of EF tasks. Sensitivity and subgroup analyses showed that the anomaly of left striatum is consistent across studies and present in both euthymic and BD I patients.
Patients with BD consistently showed abnormal activation in the cortico-striatal system during performance of EF tasks compared with HC. Failure of activation of the striatum may be a reliable marker for impairment in performance of especially inhibition tasks by patients with BD.
Although it is crucial to improve the treatment status of people with severe mental illness (SMI), it is still unknown whether and how socioeconomic development influences their treatment status.
To explore the change in treatment status in people with SMI from 1994 to 2015 in rural China and to examine the factors influencing treatment status in those with SMI.
Two mental health surveys using identical methods and ICD-10 were conducted in 1994 and 2015 (population ≥15 years old, n = 152 776) in the same six townships of Xinjin County, Chengdu, China.
Compared with 1994, individuals with SMI in 2015 had significantly higher rates of poor family economic status, fewer family caregivers, longer duration of illness, later age at first onset and poor mental status. Participants in 2015 had significantly higher rates of never being treated, taking antipsychotic drugs and ever being admitted to hospital, and lower rates of using traditional Chinese medicine or being treated by traditional/spiritual healers. The factors strongly associated with never being treated included worse mental status (symptoms/social functioning), older age, having no family caregivers and poor family economic status.
Socioeconomic development influences the treatment status of people with SMI in contemporary rural China. Relative poverty, having no family caregivers and older age are important factors associated with a worse treatment status. Culture-specific, community-based interventions and targeted poverty-alleviation programmes should be developed to improve the early identification, treatment and recovery of individuals with SMI in rural China.
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.
Conotruncal heart defects are considered to be one of the most common types of birth defect worldwide. Genetic disturbances in folate metabolism such as Thymidylate synthase may increase risk for conotruncal heart defects. We evaluated two common Thymidylate synthase polymorphisms, including the 28 bp tandem repeat in the promoter enhancer region of the 5′-untranslated region and the 6 bp deletion in the 3′-untranslated region, as risk factors of conotruncal heart defects including various subtypes of malformations, in a total of 193 mothers with conotruncal heart defect in offspring and 234 healthy controls in the Chinese population. Logistic regression analyses revealed that mothers who were homozygotes with deletion (−/−) had a 1.8-fold (odds ratio: 1.8; 95% confidence interval: 1.0–3.0, p = 0.040) increased risk for conotruncal heart defect in offspring, respectively, when compared with mothers carrying the wild type (+/+) genotype. Consistently, individuals carrying the genotype −/− of the Thymidylate synthase 6 bp deletion also had higher plasma homocysteine levels compared to the mothers carrying the genotype +/+ in the control and conotruncal heart defect groups (p = 0.006 and p = 0.004, respectively). However, our results showed that Thymidylate synthase 28 bp tandem repeat polymorphism was not associated with risk for conotruncal heart defect and plasma homocysteine level. In conclusion, our data suggest that the maternal Thymidylate synthase 6 bp deletion polymorphism might be associated with plasma homocysteine level and risk for conotruncal heart defect in offspring.
Orthogonal frequency division multiplex (OFDM) system is a special cognitive radio system that is widely used in military and civilian applications. As a crucial aspect of spectrum monitoring and electronic countermeasures reconnaissance, it is important to identify the OFDM signal. An identification method based on fractal box dimension and pseudo-inverse spectrum (PIS) has been proposed in this paper for the recognition problem of OFDM signal under multipath channel. Firstly, by theoretically analyzing the fractal box dimension of OFDM signal and single carrier (SC) signal, it can be concluded that the fractal box dimension of OFDM signal and SC signal has obvious differences. Thus, the fractal box dimension of the two types of signal is used to discriminate OFDM signal and SC signal. Then, the PIS of an OFDM signal is constructed according to the characteristics of the OFDM signal. Through theoretical analysis and the experimental simulation, it illustrates that the classification feature could be extracted by detecting the periodical peak of the PIS of OFDM signal and used for identifying OFDM signal in the Gaussian noise. Simulation results demonstrate that the proposed algorithm has better performance than the conventional algorithm based on autocorrelation.
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.
Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), an effective antidepressive treatment, is frequently accompanied by cognitive impairment (predominantly memory), usually transient and self-limited. The hippocampus is a key region involved in memory and emotion processing, and in particular, the anterior-posterior hippocampal subregions has been shown to be associated with emotion and memory. However, less is known about the relationship between hippocampal-subregion alterations following ECT and antidepressant effects or cognitive impairments.
Resting-state functional connectivity (RSFC) based on the seeds of hippocampal subregions were investigated in 45 pre- and post-ECT depressed patients. Structural connectivity between hippocampal subregions and corresponding functionally abnormal regions was also conducted using probabilistic tractography. Antidepressant effects and cognitive impairments were measured by the Hamilton Depressive Rating Scale (HDRS) and the Category Verbal Fluency Test (CVFT), respectively. Their relationships with hippocampal-subregions alterations were examined.
After ECT, patients showed increased RSFC in the hippocampal emotional subregion (HIPe) with the left middle occipital gyrus (LMOG) and right medial temporal gyrus (RMTG). Decreased HDRS was associated with increased HIPe-RMTG RSFC (r = −0.316, p = 0.035) significantly and increased HIPe-LMOG RSFC at trend level (r = −0.283, p = 0.060). In contrast, the hippocampal cognitive subregion showed decreased RSFC with the bilateral angular gyrus, and was correlated with decreased CVFT (r = 0.418, p = 0.015 for left; r = 0.356, p = 0.042 for right). No significant changes were found in structural connectivity.
The hippocampal-subregions functional alterations may be specially associated with the antidepressant and cognitive effects of ECT.
'Missing wedge' problem exists in some kind of CT imaging situations, such as electron microscopy, x-ray nano-CT image, etc. Method such as iterative reconstruction algorithms, total variation based method were applied to improve the reconstruction quality, but the 'missing wedge' artifacts are still inevitable. In this paper, a method based on image processing technique was proposed to locate the 'missing wedge' artifacts in CT reconstruction. The result showed good performance on locating the artifacts, which also showed the potential in CT reconstruction and image analysis in nano-CT.
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.
This study aimed to determine the effects of supplementing the diet of adult Nile tilapia Oreochromis niloticus with phosphatidylcholine (PC) on growth performance, body composition, fatty acid composition and gene expression. Genetically Improved Farmed Tilapia fish with an initial body weight of 83·1 (sd 2·9) g were divided into six groups. Each group was hand-fed a semi-purified diet containing 1·7 (control diet), 4·0, 6·5, 11·5, 21·3 or 41·0 g PC/kg diet for 68 d. Supplemental PC improved the feed efficiency rate, which was highest in the 11·5 g PC/kg diet. Weight gain and specific growth rate were unaffected. Dietary PC increased PC content in the liver and decreased crude fat content in the liver, viscera and body. SFA and MUFA increased and PUFA decreased in muscle with increasing dietary PC. Cytoplasmic phospholipase A2 and secreted phospholipase A2 mRNA expression were up-regulated in the brain and heart in PC-supplemented fish. PC reduced fatty acid synthase mRNA expression in the liver and visceral tissue but increased expression in muscle. Hormone-sensitive lipase and lipoprotein lipase expression increased in the liver with increasing dietary PC. Growth hormone mRNA expression was reduced in the brain and insulin-like growth factor-1 mRNA expression in liver reduced with PC above 6·5 g/kg. Our results demonstrate that dietary supplementation with PC improves feed efficiency and reduces liver fat in adult Nile tilapia, without increasing weight gain, representing a novel dietary approach to reduce feed requirements and improve the health of Nile tilapia.
Radiocarbon (14C) activity in groundwater can be used to determine subsurface residence time up to ∼40 kyr, providing crucial information on dynamic properties of groundwater and on paleoclimate. However, commonly applied sampling methods for dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC-14C) are prone to low level of modern atmospheric contamination, resulting in underestimation of groundwater ages that cluster around 30–40 kyr. We extract CO2 gas from groundwater using a device originally developed for studies of noble gas radionuclides. Carbon is collected in the gas phase, eliminating the possibility of fostering microbial activities and aqueous chemical reactions during sample storage. This method collects CO2-14C and radiokrypton (81Kr and 85Kr) samples simultaneously. The presence of any shorter-lived 85Kr is used to evaluate the degree of atmospheric contamination during sampling or mixing of young groundwater. Most groundwater samples showed lower CO2-14C activities than those of DIC-14C, presumably due to the absence of atmospheric contamination. Samples with 81Kr age exceeding 150 kyr have no detectable CO2-14C except where mixing sources of young groundwater is suspected. These field data serve as confirmations for the reliability of the newly presented sample collection and CO2-14C method, and for the outstanding roles of radiokrypton isotopes in characterizing old groundwater.
Children acquiring sociolinguistic knowledge in transnational migration settings must learn to evaluate multiple languages and dialects in a fluid, multifaceted social landscape. This study examines the sociolinguistic development of local and expatriate children in Singapore and investigates the extent to which they share sociolinguistic knowledge and norms. One hundred fourteen children ages five to nineteen completed a region identification task and an occupation judgment task, focusing on their perception of four regional English varieties: Australian English, Northern-China-accented English, Filipino English, and Singapore English. While all groups performed well on the region identification task, expatriate children outperformed locals within the youngest age group. Singaporean and expatriate children attending local schools showed greater familiarity with local norms than international school students in their occupation ratings. Participants mapped speakers to occupations by general prestige level, suggesting that children rely on indirect knowledge of social status rather than direct experience with speakers in their development of sociolinguistic evaluation. (Children's sociolinguistic development, transnational migration, language attitudes)*
The Management and Organization Review (MOR) special issue on ‘Doing Qualitative Research in Emerging Markets’ aims to advance the quality, diversity, and understanding of qualitative research methods in management in the context of emerging markets. The value of qualitative research is increasingly embraced by management scholars thanks to its merits for building new theories and testing existing ones, as well as exemplifying new phenomena by surfacing contextual idiosyncrasies (Bansal & Corley, 2011; Birkinshaw, Brannen, & Tang, 2011; Eisenhardt & Graebner, 2007; Rynes, 2007; Welch, Piekkari, Plakoyiannaki, & Paavilainen-Mantymaki, 2011). As Bansal and Corley (2011: 234) suggest ‘The beauty of qualitative research is that it accommodates different paradigms and different styles of research and research reporting. Although there are merits to having norms emerge for the style of qualitative research manuscripts, we do not want to stifle creativity’.
A “RE-free” and I-phase-containing Mg–8Sn-based alloy system was developed and successfully fabricated through the equal channel angular pressing (ECAP) process. The influence of the Zn/Al mass ratio on the microstructures and mechanical properties of the as-ECAPed Mg–8Sn–(5,6,7)Zn–2(wt%)Al alloys was investigated using an optical microscope, an X-ray diffractometer, a scanning electron microscope, a transmission electron microscope, and a universal testing machine. Grain size, dynamic recrystallization behavior, and texture were found to be greatly affected by the Zn/Al mass ratio. Furthermore, the ultimate tensile strength (250 MPa) and elongation (14.5%) of the alloy with a Zn/Al mass ratio of 3 were considerably increased compared to those of the as-ECAPed alloys with Zn/Al ratios of 2.5 and 3.5 (ultimate tensile strength and elongation of 215 MPa and 13% and 184 MPa and 10%, respectively). This significant enhancement was attributed to extensive grain boundary strengthening, precipitation strengthening, and higher work hardening capacity as well as texture randomization. The strength and ductility of the as-ECAPed alloys are also discussed in terms of the I-phase and Mg2Sn formation.